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Worcester, Massachusetts

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Worcester in Massachusetts.

 

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Worcester is a city and the county seat of Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. Named after Worcester, England, as of the 2010 Census the city's population was 181,045, making it the second largest city in New England after Boston. Worcester is located approximately 40 miles (64 km) west of Boston, and 38 miles (61 km) northeast of Springfield. Due to its location in central Massachusetts, amidst Massachusetts' major metropolitan regions, Worcester is known as the "Heart of the Commonwealth."

Culture

Museums and cultural centers

Worcester is home to several noteworthy libraries and museums, including:

the American Antiquarian Society, a national library;
the Worcester Art Museum, whose highlights include works by El Greco, Rembrandt, Matisse, Renoir, Gauguin, Kandinsky, Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, Franz Kline, and Jackson Pollock;
the Higgins Armory Museum, housed in a steel Art Deco Building, the sole museum in the Western Hemisphere devoted to arms and armour;
the EcoTarium, a science museum.

Performing arts centers and arenas are abundant in the city. They include:

Mechanics Hall, a Renaissance Revival concert hall on the National Register of Historic Places;
Tuckerman Hall, designed by Josephine Wright Chapman, one of this country's earliest woman architects, and home of the Massachusetts Symphony Orchestra;
DCU Center, Arena and Convention Center, home of the Worcester Sharks and host of concerts, family events, sporting events, conventions, trade shows, banquets, and special events, opened in 1982 and was joined by the attached Convention Center in 1997;
the Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts, Worcester's venue for Broadway shows, concerts, and nationally recognized performers, located at the site of the old Poli Palace Theatre on Main Street;
the Worcester Palladium, on Main Street, a venue attracting many musicians and performers from around the world;

The Worcester County Poetry Association fosters the poetic tradition by sponsoring readings by national and local poets, celebrating Bloomsday, and holding conferences and literary tours of Worcester. Local poets have competed successfully in the National Poetry Slam.

The Worcester Center for Crafts, founded in 1856 as the Worcester Employment Society, provides professional-level craft studies to the Worcester community. The Craft Center's original purpose was to foster economic empowerment by teaching immigrants the skills needed to create and sell crafts. Today, the Worcester Center for Crafts offers craft education in weaving, metalwork, woodwork, enameling, jewelry-making, and other crafts, and seeks to promote an appreciation for fine craft.

Annual events

The Worcester Music Festival is the oldest music festival in the United States. This festival is presented by Music Worcester, Inc., which also presents the Mass Jazz Festival.
stART on the Street is a large street art festival celebrating local art and culture which takes place on the 3rd Sunday in September in the Main South neighborhood". This is hosted by the Central MA Arts Assembly.
The Asian Festival of Worcester is a large annual festival which takes place on the last Sunday in June each year from 12:00pm to 6:00pm. This event is hosted by the South East Asian Coalition of Central Massachusetts and is a collaboration of performances, food, and cultural tables from the diverse Asian communities located all over Massachusetts.
The New England Metal and Hardcore Festival is usually held in April at the Palladium. It has run annually since 1999.
Rock and Shock, a horror convention and heavy metal concert, is held at the Palladium and DCU Center Convention Center each October.
Canal Fest occurs every fall in the City's Canal District.
Worcester First Night is the name of the city's New Years Eve celebration.
Worcester County St. Patrick's Parade - one of Massachusetts largest parades. Worcester is also the home of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Div. 36, located on Temple Street, right by the Blackstone Canal.
The New England Summer Nationals is a large motorcycle and muscle car event held in Worcester.

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