Take time to explore the arts and culture in Gloucester’s historic downtown:  jam-packed with working waterfront, vessels, museums, studios, galleries, bookstores, antique shops, venues, restaurants, attractions and festivals. Here's a few highlights listed below:
Harbor. Working Harbor. Main Street. Middle Street. Residents.

Day into Night, year round programming.

Over 30 annual special festivals and events.

City Hall with the oldest extant municipal archives and significant New Deal, WPA-era murals.

Outstanding American art museum collections, archives and programming at the Cape Ann Museum.

Literary and cultural center of our City, Gloucester Lyceum & Sawyer Free Public Library with fantastic community programming.

HarborWalk, free self guided walking tour of story moments and public space throughout downtown designed with interactive new and traditional media and space for programming. Numerous free, family friendly activities and links to creative arts.

Maritime Gloucester a working waterfront museum, a marine and maritime educator, and a dynamite destination for programming (music, art lessons, lectures)

Cape Ann Community Cinema, art house cinema offering film festivals and premiere programming.

Rose Baker Senior Center with inter-generational arts workshops and lectures.

Cape Ann Art Haven and the Hive providing art workspace and classes youth and all ages, all media (ceramics, photography, painting, sculpture) also pop up venues festivals
Sargent House Museum
20+ art galleries
Artists, film and video production, writer, photographer, and landscape arts work space and studios throughout proposed district

Not 1, but 2 Historic Districts right inside the Downtown Cultural District-- and Middle Street, with key assets: Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church, St. John's, the YMCA, Temple Ahavat Achim, and the Sargent House Museum. All have outstanding programs.

National Historic Places (some include shipwrecks in our harbor).

2 National Historic Landmarks in Gloucester, both programming and partnering with the district; Schooner Adventure with historic walking tours.

Public Art memorials, sculpture, integrated works, and murals.

Places of interest such as over 40 painted views downtown by artist Edward Hopper (over 100 in Gloucester) and many other downtown scenes documented by other artists then/now.

37 restaurants (sit down); 1 brew pub; 4 specialty bakeries; wine and cheese; artisan olive oil; 2 candy; 2 coffee/tea; plus ... Diverse mix unique stores and businesses: 2 book stores; several antique shops; independent mainstays such as Common Crow,  Mystery Train, Gloucester Music, Bananas; and whale watch/vessel charters, plus...

Many of the restaurants and other businesses feature alternative exhibition and performance space for music, arts, dance, lectures and performances.


Henry Allen's North Shore Folklore Theatre Company presents local and touring theatrical and musical stage production and workshops for all ages.

Walking tours.

Bird and bloom walks.

Working harbor; Historic Registry items include unique harbor (i.e., not land) locales such as 2
shipwrecks and Ten Pound Island (Winslow Homer); restaurants that display or exhibit arts, or partner with artists; art
of nature from fish markets to downtown's designation as an IBA to decades of whale watches,
research, and conservation; after-hours shopping, dining, and performance venues; sailing,
dory , vessels-- often with programming, too; pop-up stores and galleries (seasonally or weekend)
such as Present, Gauthier and as of Nov. 2013 Ken Riaf Law and Water; mainstays such as YMCA,
Mystery Train, Action, Bananas, Gloucester Music, Common Crow; artful well-being,and fitness
businesses; Nadine's dance studio; ceramics; creative film venues,inside and outdoors; and
temporary arts taken to the streets.