Out and About May 2022
Springing Back to Life!
LGBTQ+ Friendly Adventures in Worcester as the Weather Warms Up!
After another long, frigid winter marked with record-high COVID numbers, things are finally looking up as we get into the warmer months. Spring is one of my favorite times of the year, with long, sunny days, and plenty of hot summer nights in our near future. Everyone knows about Polar Park and the Public Market, and although I’ll definitely be paying visits to some of the city’s more high-traffic venues, I thought I’d highlight some of my favorite things to do, indoors and out, that are, of course, LGBTQ+ friendly and tons of fun.
Bacon, Brews, Burgers and Biscotti
Worcester’s acclaimed “Restaurant Row” has long been known for its great restaurants, specializing in Italian food, pizza joints, and some of the city’s best diners. I’ve really gotten to love some of the newer additions Shrewsbury Street has welcomed over the past few years. Let’s say it’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon, maybe you grab breakfast at the Parkway or the Boulevard (more on her later!), and take a stroll up to East Park. Next, I’d head up to Redemption Rock Brewing Co. for a few beers. They usually have a food truck on the weekends too! The patio is fantastic and the whole place is big and airy. Just a great place to spend the afternoon and it’s totally not a bro-ish, sporty, intimidating brewery atmosphere. For dinner or maybe a pick-me-up espresso Martini to keep it rolling, I’d head up to The Woo Bar & Grill. They have some really great, cozy outdoor seating, you’ll feel right at home. For dessert, on the way back hit up Meraki, a new dessert bar serving delicious cakes and pastries as well as coffee and cocktails.
Nature Walks and Meatballs
One of my favorite places to get outside in the city is Broadmeadow Brook. It’s a perfect spot for a hike without having to leave town. You just might forget you’re still in Worcester, but conveniently — you are! If you’re like me and need a reward after a hike, you’re on the east side of town, which means you need a meatball sandwich from Vincent’s. As a musician it’s one of my home-away-from-home bars. In addition to the late-night fun, they have an awesome backyard seating area, and their famous sandwiches are served up in the afternoons as well.
For a fun night out that begins with a great dinner, start at deadhorse hill on Main Street. Always a beautiful, locally-sourced but internationally-inspired menu from head chef Jared Forman. Ask Julia to help you with the wine pairing — she never disappoints. (in my
opinion, also the city’s best spot for brunch — after which you can head to Sweet Jane’s Boutique across the street for some big league consignment deals). To continue the downtown journey, my friends and I usually end up at the MB Lounge dancing the night away. I usually try to sneak out before the lights turn on and beat the crowd to the Boulevard Diner. I know I mentioned it for breakfast, but the real magic of this place happens after midnight. Their appropriately-vast menu appeals to even the most intoxicatedly voracious appetite, and the people watching is second to none.
Whatever you get up to this spring and summer, stay safe, and have fun. Worcester is much more walkable than many folks realize, and you really interact with the culture of the town in a different way when you’re on foot. Hope to see you out and about soon!
Giuliano D’Orazio (he/him) is a Worcester native, musician, music educator, member of the queer community, and a board member of Love Your Labels.