The Heartbeat of Haverhill

Good News from A Great City Haverhill, MA

Splash Around in Haverhill

‘Summer in the City’ brings to mind images of kids running through the spray of open fire hydrants, while others clamber out onto fire escapes of multi deckers just trying to catch a breeze. But our city, Haverhill, is unlike most others…we have all sorts of waterways within our large geographic area and enough hydro activities to keep everyone soggy.

In 2016, the first day of summer was also the first weekday of vacation since Haverhill Public Schools let out on Friday. Mother Nature obligingly  turned up the heat and the sunshine for a near 90-degree day. The Heartbeat of Haverhill noted that everyone seemed to gather at the water’s edges. In fact Haverhill has so many ways to engage with water that maybe in summer the city should be nicknamed ‘Water World’

(NOTES:  CLICK ON PHOTOS TO ENLARGE. If you are interested in purchasing any of these copyrighted photographs, please contact me through this email address:

IMG_1659 Haverhill Plug Pond Summer 2016

PERSONAL WATERCRAFT on THE MERRIMACK RIVER and other Haverhill bodies of water

The public boat ramp near Crescent Yacht Club boasts a lovely little playground to store your kiddies as you unload your boat. It also provides access to a long and exciting ride for jet skis and wave runners. The Heartbeat of Haverhill barely had a chance to say ‘hi’ to a group of daring young men in their personal watercraft before they zipped away in an all encompassing wake enroute to Salisbury. They had never made the trip before and didn’t know how long it would take, but it seemed like a thrilling adventure.

The river thrives with a multitude of watercraft from Stand Up Paddle boards to kayaks and canoes as well as motor boats. One of the busiest times on the river takes place behind the Tap restaurant at the public docks and the surrounding areas. It is the annual is Team Haverhill’s River Ruckus that is to be held on Sept. 24 in 2016.   Just make sure you comply with the rules of the waterways on which you travel and wear an appropriate life vest.



The following outlines boating usage allowances for the waterways of Haverhill. Source City of Haverhill website

The City of Haverhill offers many opportunities for residents and visitors to enjoy its lakes, ponds, and rivers:


Chadwick Pond Yes Electric Only Yes RT – Barker St
Crystal Lake No boats of any kind are allowed (including Rubber Rafts & Tubes)
Millvale Reservoir Yes Electric Only Yes RT – Millvale Road
Plug Pond (Lake Saltonstall) Yes Electric Only Yes R(2) – Mill St & Sanders Road
Round Pond (Lake Pentucket) Yes Electric Only Yes R – Stanley Dr RT – Concord Street
Winnekenni Basin No boats of any kind are allowed (including Rubber Rafts & Tubes)
Kenoza Lake No boats of any kind are allowed (including Rubber Rafts & Tubes)
East Meadow River Yes Electric Only Yes RT – Millvale Road
Little River Yes Yes Yes None at this time
Merrimack River Yes Yes Yes R – South River Street, adjacent to yacht club

R – Ramp                      RT – Roof Top Carry In

For information on boat registration, contact the Massachusetts Environmental Police at (617) 626-1610 or

For information on local boating regulations, contact the Haverhill Harbor Master at (978) 372-8477.


The Merrimack River in Haverhill offers two places to keep your boat: the decidedly unstuffy Crescent Yacht Club 30 Ferry St on the Bradford side of the river and Kazmiera Marina 72 Coffin Ave on the Groveland edge of the river. Or if you are lucky enough, many of the private residences along the river.

IMG_4102 Haverhill public boat launch at Crescent Yacht Club

Public boat ramp with Crescent Yacht Club docks behind it

A newly marked channel makes Haverhill’s portion of the Merrimack River accessible for larger boats that can head from the downtown restaurant (and ice cream) district out to Newburyport.  Or as many people with boats enjoy doing – just sitting onboard and watching the world and your cares float by.





Plug Pond AKA Lake Saltonstall is a Residents Only beach that is surrounded by trails and scenic bike paths that lead all the way to Winnekenni Park. The rate to park at Plug Pond is family friendly. Plug Pond has new features this year:  an extended sand beach with a designated shallow wading area (with lots of little fishes scurrying about) for our youngest residents. And this year there are three lifeguard chairs –   the standard look out and two actually in the water for faster response times. Other places to swim or take swimming lessons for varying costs include:   Haverhill’s YMCACedardale Sports and Fitness Club, and Bradford Swim Club



On a stifling summer afternoon, Swasey Field Splash Pad at 59 Blaisdell Street is an urban oasis that is monitored  by onsite staff and police for safety. It is busy and well loved play area for children and the adults who fail to keep up with the youngsters darting into the refreshing spritzers. The surrounding park offers walking trails baseball and little league diamonds and basketball courts, along with a sizable playground.



Fish Haverhill’s trout stocked lakes, ponds and rivers or cast a line into our tidal impacted Merrimack River. The thrill of the catch will make you forget all about the temperature. Did you know Haverhill’s 7 lakes and ponds include: Lake Pentucket/Round Pond, Lake Saltonstall/Plug Pond, Crystal Lake, Kenoza Lake, Millvale Reservoir, Chadwick Pond, Winnekenni Basin. Of these Plug Pond. Millvale Reservoir and Pentucket Lake are stocked with trout by the State of Massachusetts. Only Kenoza Lake prohibits fishing. The following chart is from

Stocking Date Waterbody Town Species District
5/17/2016 Lake Pentucket HAVERHILL Rainbow Trout Northeast
5/17/2016 Lake Saltonstall HAVERHILL Rainbow Trout Northeast
4/28/2016 Lake Saltonstall HAVERHILL Rainbow Trout Northeast
4/20/2016 Lake Pentucket HAVERHILL Eastern Brook Trout Northeast
4/20/2016 Millvale Reservoir HAVERHILL Eastern Brook Trout Northeast
4/11/2016 Little River (Haverhill) HAVERHILL Brown Trout Northeast
4/11/2016 East Meadow Brook HAVERHILL Brown Trout Northeast
3/16/2016 Millvale Reservoir HAVERHILL Rainbow Trout Northeast
3/15/2016 Lake Pentucket HAVERHILL Rainbow Trout Northeast
3/8/2016 Lake Saltonstall HAVERHILL Brown Trout Northeast



The near proximity of water can calm and cool us down. Take a hike on one of our many waterside trails.Click on the photos for the name of the trail and address pictured.


To learn more about the vast trail network in Haverhill you can purchase the Haverhill Trails Committee ‘Comprehensive  Guide to Exploring Haverhill Trails” available at the Haverhill Public Library Friends Gift Shop  or  connect with the Haverhill Trails Committee .

IMG_5114 Haverhill Trails Committee Trail Guide

When you consider that adult bodies are made up  of up to 60% water and “According to H.H. Mitchell, Journal of Biological Chemistry 158, the brain and heart are composed of 73% water…”*,  is it any wonder that we are so drawn to the water in summer? Everyone stay safe out there.


(c)Alison Colby-Campbell

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Alison Colby-Campbell



Full-brain user demonstrating a healthy(?) obsession with marketing, promotion, writing, photography, house rabbits, the natural world, tennis, big and small problem solving, reading, hiking, HGTV and the flotsam & jetsam of everyday life. My three blogs Brain4Rent, The Heartbeat of Haverhill, Alison Colby-Campbell Photography are Wordpress based.

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