The Hopedale Town Park
Built - 1906
Hopedale is a small residential town in the southeastern corner of Worcester County. Its beginnings were quietly ushered in around 1841 when the Reverend Adin Ballow and his followers settled there sharing a farmhouse and chores and their ideals of social reform and abolitionism and naming their community "The Dale of Hope." At that time, the area was all farmland and part of Milford. The Reverend and his utopian experiment slowed down in the beginning of the 1850s when it was obvious that his ideas were not economically sound and his community failed in 1856. However, the community quickly rebounded and developed into a cotton loom-making capital during the Industrial Revolution when the Draper family moved in and when Ebenezer Draper built the first Draper shop. From that point on, the community became a representation of a community's growth and development when a New England town became a mill town. In its prime, the Draper Corporation employed over 3,000 people until its doors closed in the mid-seventies. Today the town unfortunately has almost 50 acres of buildings that are abandoned and of which still dominates the town.
The Hopedale Bandstand was built in 1906 which was the same year that the Hopedale Brass Band was formed which leads to believe that the structure was built for them by the Dillon Brothers of Milford under the supervision of the Park Commission in a Craftsman style and designed by Chapman and Fraser of Boston. It includes which was originally a locker room below but now used by the Department as storage for their summer children's programs.
Years ago, most everyone in town would attend the band concerts on Wednesday evenings during the summer months with concerts sponsored by the American Legion and the Worcester Brass Band but now are sponsored by the Cultural Council still on Wednesday with different local bands each week for the 6 weeks of programs and still drawing large crowds.
This bandstand is the town's second structure with the first one located behind the town hall which was torn down when this one was built in 1906 and was probably just a platform and had little use up to its demise.
INFORMATION SUPPLIED BY:
Dan Malloy, Town Offices