Esplanade Association and DCR to Hold Groundbreaking Ceremony for Eliot Memorial

On Tuesday, Sept. 10, at 4:30 p.m., The Esplanade Association (TEA) and the state’s the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) will hold a ceremonial groundbreaking at the Charles Eliot Memorial, adjacent to the Community Boating Docks.

The groundbreaking is the result of over two years of fundraising and advocacy efforts to revitalize this historical memorial. The event will celebrate not only the work of Charles Eliot, but the future of the Charles River Esplanade.

Charles Eliot was a prominent landscape architect, and is recognized as the founder of today’s Charles River Esplanade. Eliot advocated for parks as active places where urban culture could thrive. He apprenticed for Frederick Law Olmsted. In 1886, Eliot started his own firm. Eliot founded the Trustees of Reservations and with Sylvester Baxter led the campaign for the Boston Metropolitan Parks Commission, established in 1893. As the commission’s landscape architect, he acquired over 7,000 acres of parkland. After Eliot’s sudden death in 1897, his projects were passed on to Arthur Shurcliff. Shurcliff later designed the site’s memorial to his mentor, Eliot.

The revitalization of the Charles Eliot Memorial will transform the decaying site into an inviting gathering spot for Esplanade visitors by offering new seating, improved views and enhanced plantings. This project has been made possible through the generous support of TEA donors and in partnership with DCR.

For event details and to purchase tickets, visit

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