Medford’s Riverside Plaza Provides Residents with Gathering Spot

Ed Greable Blogger September 9, 2018

Riverside Plaza in Medford Square is proving to be a wonderful addition to the city of Medford. Officially opened in July, the plaza features seating, tables, bike racks, a stage, chess tables and other amenities for residents and visitors to the city to enjoy.

A Plaza in the Making

The development of Riverside Plaza was no small undertaking. In fact, the city broke ground on the project more than one year ago. Up until that point, the space had been home to an unused bus shelter. All of the efforts finally paid off when the official ribbon-cutting ceremony took place on July 19. More tan 100 residents, politicians, businesses and community members came out for the celebration, which included music and vendors.

The project, which was initially supposed to be completed in April, was made possible in part from a $250,000 grant from the state. In addition to bringing more people to the businesses in Medford Square, the city hopes Riverside Plaza will serve as a community meeting space with events offered throughout the year. At the ribbon-cutting ceremony, local family band The Flying Cattaneos and bluegrass group The Bagboys performed. Xtreme Ninja, which is a martial arts center in the Square, also provided martial arts demonstrations at the event.

Hosting Community Events

In addition to the ribbon-cutting ceremony and celebrations, Riverside Plaza also served as a central point for the Circle the Square summer event. For this event, local businesses and organizations lined Riverside Avenue and River Street. Silvertree Healing Arts offered free chair massages while CB Scoops offered cookies, cannolis and slush. Other tables at the event include local glassblower Hugh Naggar, Borealis Yoga and Friends of Medford Public Library.

Riverside Plaza Nights was also launched last month, with one more performance taking place on September 13th. The concert series invites attendees to purchase takeout meals from local Medford Square restaurants before heading to the plaza to enjoy music from local artists. Attendees are also welcome to bring lawn chairs or to utilize the many seats and tables that are available at the new plaza.

Featured artists in the event included Lydia Harrell and Lisa Bastoni & Sean Staples. This Thursday, September 13th, Intra Element will perform at the plaza from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. Mayor Stephanie M. Burke also anticipates having additional concerts in the near future, with programming ideas already in the works. Burke has also indicated that the plaza will host additional programming this fall.

Located just 3.2 miles northwest of downtown Boston, the city of Medford offers a convenient location outside of Boston. Residents of Medford often identify as being part of one of the following neighborhoods:

  • Brook Estate
  • Fulton Heights/The Heights (North Medford)
  • The Hillside
  • Lawrence Estates
  • Sputh Medford
  • Station Landing
  • Wellington/Glenwood
  • West Medford

Regardless of the neighborhood that one associates with, however, the Riverside Plaza serves as a great new meeting spot for residents to enjoy local talent and to create a sense of community without having to travel to Boston.

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