Park Info

Stark Park occupies a 30 acre tract that was once the site of the Stark Family farm in Manchester’s north end. The park was dedicated in 1893 and along with Derryfield Park, became one of the first public parks in Manchester and a source of great pride for the City. Much of that pride stemmed from an appreciation of the role of General John Stark in the American Revolution.

The park is open from sunrise to sunset. 

For directions, click on the picture to your left. 

General John Stark, born in Londonderry in 1728, was New Hampshire’s foremost Revolutionary War hero and author of New Hampshire’s motto 

“Live free or Die. Death is not the worst of evils.”

General Stark died at the age of 94 in 1822 and is buried in the Stark Family Gravesite, along with his beloved wife “Molly” and other members of his family, in Stark Park in Manchester, NH.

Learn more about General John Stark.

Notable Park Improvements


Several additional objectives established in the Master Plan have been accomplished, including the erection of a bandstand in 2009. The bandstand was paid for entirely with private funds. This project was chosen in order to re-create a similar, but much smaller structure, present in the park’s original design. It was felt that a bandstand would bring people back to the park. This vision was confirmed by a generous memorial matching gift honoring Fred Hecker, the leader of Hecker’s Singing Orchestra of bygone days, and Alfred Hastings, a lover of music. FSP named the bandstand the Hecker*Hastings Bandstand, fulfilling the donor’s wishes.


A second project, completed in August of 2010, was the restoration and repair of the Stark statue and the unveiling of a plaque honoring General Stark. The Norwin S. and Elizabeth Bean Foundation awarded FSP a generous grant to fund all new signage in the park. The restoration was completed thanks to grant from the State of New Hampshire and the Ann DeNicola Trust, as well as tireless fundraising by the Friends.


In 2012, the Friends of Stark Park chose the restoration of the Stark Family Gravesite as their next big project. We had already completed the construction of our wonderful Hecker*Hastings bandstand in 2009 and the repair and restoration of the General Stark equestrian statue, finished in 2010.  Since Stark Park is on the State and National Registers of historic Places, we were mindful that anything we did had to be in keeping with the historic nature of the site. None of the graves were disturbed in any way. We restored and replicated the periphery of the gravesite only, with restored corner posts, replacing the urn lost to vandalism long ago on the Stark Family Monument and the restoration and repair of the cast iron fencing. An impressive cobblestone-like apron was also installed in front of the gravesite. The project was done in total cooperation with the City of Manchester and the State of New Hampshire. 


In 2018, ten steel benches with granite slab foundations were installed in Stark Park.  This project was made possible by the generous donations to the Friends of Stark Park and a matching $10,000 grant from the Norwin S. and Elizabeth N. Bean Foundation.


A Walk in the Woods is created thanks to generous assistance from Manchester Moves, an organization dedicated to developing and expanding access to nature trails, and with the support of Manchester Parks & Recreation. This trail connects to the Heritage Trail network, building upon and expanding what is already in place.These western lower 15 acres of Stark Park have been turned into a wonderful nature preserve for all to safely enjoy!

Stark Farm Community Garden is established.


Hillside Restoration Project: On the back side of the Stark Family gravesite, across the road from the community gardens, is an area characterized by a steep bluff, that was severely damaged by overgrowth of invasive species, fallen trees, debris, and at risk of erosion. This entire area was opened up allowing views from the gravesite down through the Walk in the Woods. This progress was made possible through a generous $20,000 donation and an additional $10,000 matching funds from our members. 


Dawn Redwood Groove tree planting