Former Northampton State Hospital Grounds

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Park Rule: Unknown
Restroom: No
Park Size: Large
Small Dog Area: Unknown
Fee: None
Services: Dog Walking
Description
Located on the grounds that once held the Northampton State Hospital, you and your pup can find an unofficial dog park, what the community has affectionately named the "Northampton Dog Park." The hospital once served patients deemed insane by medical professionals, but the institution fell into questionable practices that came to media attention in the late 20th century. When an investigation determined the conditions in the hospital were not suitable for the treatment of ill individuals, a lawsuit ensued. The hospital was closed in 1986, and the last building, Old Main, was torn down in 2006, leaving these sprawling grounds empty.


While a large part of the grounds are farmed by the Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School, the area has become a haven for dogs and their owners to enjoy. As an unofficial dog park, access to the Former Northampton State Hospital Grounds is open to the public at no cost, and found right off of Burts Pit Road.


The 280 acres here consists of wide open grass areas and meadows, and wooded sections. The property is home to many hiking trails, as well an 18-hole disc golf course. Areas on the Mill River provide some water fun for dogs who love to splash in the shallow places. This land is a pupular spot for dog walkers who gather daily for social time and some physical activity for their beloved pooches. Since there are no official rules for the area, many owners let their dogs run off leash, so be aware. To ensure the continued safety of all pets, it is best for all dogs to be fully vaccinated and in possession of a city dog license.

As a closed hospital facility, there are no on-site amenities provided, so be sure to bring any essentials for a day of outdoor fun, including water to share, and clean-up bags. 

To learn more about an interesting piece of Massachusetts history and make some new canine pals in the process, plan a visit to the Former Northampton State Hospital Grounds! 

Address
53 Burts Pit Rd
Northampton, MA 01060
Hours
Mon Open 24 Hours
Tue Open 24 Hours
Wed Open 24 Hours
Thu Open 24 Hours
Fri Open 24 Hours
Sat Open 24 Hours
Sun Open 24 Hours
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Address
53 Burts Pit Rd
Northampton, MA 01060
Hours
Mon Open 24 Hours
Tue Open 24 Hours
Wed Open 24 Hours
Thu Open 24 Hours
Fri Open 24 Hours
Sat Open 24 Hours
Sun Open 24 Hours