TOWN SPOTLIGHT: Newton, Massachusetts

Mar 13, 2019

A picturesque, safe town seven miles west of Boston, with great access into the city and lots to do.

The 88,000 people who reside in Newton, MA truly have it all. The community has great public schools, a noteworthy food scene, and it’s super easy and affordable to get around. If you’re looking to live close to the city, one of the various villages in town – like Waban, Newton Highlands, Newton Centre, or West Newton – all have something fun and different to offer.

Let’s Head to Boston

One of the many perks of Newton’s location is the access into downtown Boston. The subway train (as Bostonians call it, “the T”) runs through Newton, making it easy to get downtown for just a few dollars. For daily commuters, there is also a faster commuter train with set departure times and comfortable seats. Multiple bus lines run through Newton on their way into Boston, such as the 554 bus. The town is right by interstate 90, making it quick and easy to travel by car as well.

Let’s Hit the Books

Many families move to Newton for one single reason – the public-school system. Newton has top-notch public schools with caring teachers, extracurricular activities, and a very involved parent community. There are 15 elementary schools, four middle schools, and two high schools (Newton North and Newton South). Both North and South send students to Ivy League universities year after year. Newton is also known for being a school district that provides ample support for students with special needs.

You can view which elementary school your new neighborhood would zone into here: Newton Elementary School Zones. Every elementary school provides a small, neighborhood feel despite Newton being a large town. Tuesdays are half days in Newton, and all of the town centers are bustling at lunchtime with plenty of students and their families. Newtonville’s diner, pizza places and other eateries are filled with Newton North High Schoolers who can go off campus during their free periods.

If private schools are what you are after, there are many in town as well. These include: Newton Country Day School, Jackson Walnut Park School, and Solomon Schechter Day School. People feel lucky to have so many wonderful educational options all within Newton. Having Boston College and Lasell College in town offers a multitude of cultural opportunities, sporting events and babysitter options. There are lots of active and vibrant temple and church communities in Newton as well. They are all great resources that add to the local flavor.

Summer Fun

In the summer, kids get involved in local sports like tennis lessons at The Neighborhood Club or Newton Centre, and many families get a membership to Crystal Lake. The passes are only sold to Newton residents, so the beach never gets too overcrowded. Kids can take swimming lessons here, and/or relax with their family in the sun or shade.

There are also lots of summer camps in Newton. The Parks and Recreation department through the town offers lots of options as well as private camps. There are way too many to list, but they include sports camps, arts camps and loads of other specialty camps. Some of the biggest ones include the YMCA and JCC and their many respective programs. Private schools like Fessenden, Beaver and Chestnut Hill also provide camps using their facilities.

Let’s Eat and Shop

Pasta, burgers, sushi, and more! Newton is home to a wide array of delicious dining, from casual to upscale. A town favorite is the Station Diner, which is a cozy spot nestled in the train station at Newton Centre. Newton Centre is bustling with an independent bookstore, boutique shopping, salons, eateries, and a little something sweet at Galit’s treats. For a fancy night out, Sycamore is the place to be with an intimate atmosphere and elevated menu. Central is another great place for a night out, and they are now a cafe by day.

The villages each have their hidden gems, like Walnut Market for specialty foods in Newton Highlands, or Hopsters in Newton Corner to try craft beer and bar bites. The Newton Centre green features festivals, concerts and craft fairs throughout the year. And there’s no shortage of shopping at the Chestnut Hill Mall, Chestnut Hill Square, and The Street at Chestnut Hill.

Newton is a beautiful town with a warm, community feel. The Boston Marathon route passes through the town, by famous “heartbreak hill”, and Newton residents come together to cheer on the runners together. Living on the marathon route in Newton also provides lots of running all year round. The local library on Homer Street is always filled with babies for its free story time, and the farmer’s market is home to friendly people and beautiful produce. If you choose to live in Newton, you will certainly feel at home and always have somewhere to explore.

There are hundreds of towns to choose from. How do you figure it all out? You simply don’t, without getting a Suburban Jungle Strategist to help you through it all. Schedule here for your strategy session with our innovative suburbs strategy team. All services are completely free.

Images: Barbara Hirsch, Sarah Fogelman

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