Bone Ride

Top 20 Best To Worst Plowed Towns In Worcester County, Part 1

Top 20 Best To Worst Plowed Towns In Worcester County, Part 1

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We do a lot of complaining at Turtleboy Sports, particularly when it comes to the craptacular job that the City of Worcester does plowing, sanding, and treating the roads. But is Worcester really that bad, or are we just being dramatic? To find out we had to conduct a scientific study by doing a tour de turtle done ride through 20 different towns and cities in Worcester County, taking pictures and documenting how each town and/or city did clearing their roads for drivers. Obviously we can’t get to every town in one bone ride, so we have to divide it up into a northern/western bone ride (which we did yesterday) and an eastern/southern bone ride (which we’re gonna do the next time God buries us in white shit) . We apologize in advance if we can’t document your town, and on this ride we just missed getting to places like Templeton, Lunenburg, Ashburnham, Winchendon, New Braintree, and West Brookfield.

Anyway, we went to the following 20 towns and cities on this ride: Worcester, Auburn, Leciester, Spencer, East Brookfield, Brookfield, North Brookfield, Oakham, Barre, Hubbardston, Gardner, Westminster, Fitchburg, Leominster, Sterling, West Boylston, Holden, Paxton, Rutland, Princeton. 

Let’s see how they rank….


1. West Boylston

Easily the best plowed town on the bone ride. Not even close. Nothing but sweet, glorious pavement. Everywhere from that place by the Wachusett Reservoir where your wife made you take engagement photos because that old church glimmers in the fall foliage


To the backroads and side streets





And when you did see snow on the ground, there always seemed to be a plow cleaning it up.

What a novel concept!! Good for you WB.


2. Brookfield

We entered and exited this town into and from two death traps, so anything would look in comparison. But altogether the town of Brookfield did a surprisingly good job making their roads drivable for the 50-60 people every day who feel the need to travel to Brookfield. Sure, it wasn’t perfect, but the mere fact that you were able to see so much pavement easily puts this town at the top of the list.









3. Westminster

If you’re hankering for some crackers or you need to go to Vincent’s Country Store for their world famous pickles, you’re in luck, because the town of Westminster does a really good job with their roads. Some of the side roads left something to be desired, but the main roads were in tip-top condition, and the plows were out and about scooping up the leftovers.





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4. Holden

As you can see from the pictures, Holden was one of the first places we hit up. They were at a distinct disadvantage because the sun hadn’t come out to play (the turtle never rests), which meant nothing had a chance to melt, and the morning commute didn’t have a chance to get rid of the snow its own yet. Wachusett Street was a death trap


But everything else was smooth sailing.

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5. Fitchburg

This is not a mistake. This is real life. Fitchburg is #5. I would’ve bet my biscuits that the Burg would be hovering around 18 or 19 on this list, which is where they were ranked a couple years ago when we did this. But they actually did a pretty good job. Sure, there were some areas that looked like a bootleg ski resort.




But Fitchburg is an extremely hilly place, and they’ve got lots of side streets they have to cover. The main roads looked great, and you could see actual pavement on several side streets. The same can’t be said for some of the towns that ranked below them. I guess this is what happens when you get rid of that tyrant Lisa Wong.













6. Gardner

The main roads in the overpriced furniture city were fine and dandy.

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For the most part.


Other streets left something to be desired.


But altogether there were many, many places that were much bigger death traps than Gardner.


7. Auburn

Was expecting better. Auburn was ranked #2 when we did this list a couple years ago. They’re well known for having pristine, gorgeous roads that you could eat a meal off of. And some did indeed look excellent.


But then they gradually got worse


And worse


And worse


And worse


And worse


And worse


But despite the way that street looks, it gets a lot worse the more you scroll down on this list.



8. Sterling

Not much pavement to see in Sterling. But, as we will see in other towns, there is a huge difference between compressed snow and chunks of snow. Sterling had snow on the ground, that’s basically a result of being run over a lot, and the blade of the plows not completely touching the ground. This makes it a little slippery, but at least your Prius isn’t gonna get stuck in 8 inches of chunky slushy gray shit.







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9. Paxton

No complaints about the main roads in Paxton. They were excellent.






But Paxton was a town we got to after we were three or four bones deep into our ride. By then the main roads SHOULD be clear. They get more traffic, and obviously towns are gonna prioritize the main roads. But the side roads in Paxton were a slushy abortion sandwich.









10. East Brookfield

The first thing we saw after we crossed the town line from Spencer into East Brookfield was this:


Warning: East Brookfield is NOT a safe space for Prius drivers. It will eat up your Coexist bumper sticker and steal all your granola bars. There is a section of East Brookfield called Podunk. I swear to God – Podunk. And the streets look like it too. Everything except for Route 9 is basically covered in a packed down layer of Podunk white shit, but at least they keep the chunks to a minimum.










11. Oakham

Similar to East Brookfield. There’s nary a pavement siting in town, which will happen when five people travel through your town on a day to day basis. But as you will see, it gets a lot worse than Oakham on this bone ride.













12. Barre

The main roads in Barre were in great condition, because people actually travel through Barre.



But pretty much everything except for Route 32 and 122 looks like your typical Bosnian village after a NATO airstrike.






13. Princeton

This was also one of the last towns we visited after we ran out of stuff and had to call Diego for the re-up. There are not many roads in Princeton. There are pretty much no cul de sac neighborhoods that connect to anything. Princeton is all double yellow roads that you use to travel to real towns. They have no excuse for looking this terrible this late in the day. The only road that looked somewhat normal was Brooks Station Road.


But Princeton borders the towns that are ranked 3-4 on this list, and the difference was obvious.






14. Leicester

What a shitshow Leicester was. We did a bone ride through Leicester last March and noted how pretty much everyone in Cherry Valley had a plow in their driveway. Apparently they all must be employed in Brookfield or Holden. Stafford Street looked aight, which it should because it gets a lot of traffic from Rochdale and Charlton into Worcester.


Route 9 was fine


But Route 9 was also fine in Spencer, Brookfield, and East Brookfield. It’s easily the most trafficked road in town.

However, everything else was either covered in a layer of compressed white shit.





Or chunky brown shit that looked like it hadn’t even been touched by the blade of a plow.





15. Leominster

Leominster hasn’t lost to Fitchburg in anything since Will Early was ripping the Blue Devils a new asshole every Thanksgiving. But make no doubt about it – Mayor Dean Mazerella the battle of the dagos to Mayor Steve DiNatale. Leominster is a city of 40,000 people that gets lots of traffic on a daily basis. Yet the roads were covered in chunky white shit as far as the eye could see. The pictures speak for themselves.











16. Rutland

I was shocked to see Rutland this low. They were ranked pretty high last time around. But apparently the Rutland DPW was on strike, because everything outside of Rt. 122A and 56 looked like Khione the Greek Goddess of snow took a massive dump and forgot to flush.

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17. Worcester

This is improvement people. I would’ve bet Turtleboy Jr’s allowance we’d be 19 or 20 on this list. But we beat three different towns!! Yay Worcester!! Then again, we’ve been putting so much pressure on Ed Augustus and he knew we were coming, so it looks like pulled the ol’ “let’s try to clean it up for Turtleboy” trick. But yea, it still looked like shit. The main roads were a joke.

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Lovell Street looked like someone at Lakeside Apartments put Pinky and the Brain in a blender and dumped their remains around Columbus Park Elementary School.



Cut through streets like Coolidge Road and Haviland Street were still covered in compressed snow, but at least they were wide enough to drive through and the chunks were kept to a minimum.



Baby steps people. Baby steps.


18. Hubbardston

Five seconds after crossing the border from Barre we saw this:


Don’t worry, the dog was fine. But it was a sign of what was to come in the death trap known as Hubbardston.

Route 68 is the primary throughway that brings people in Hubbardston to civilization. And as we’ve seen in all these other towns, the busiest roads are always generally cleared. Not in Hubbardston though.


This picture was taken about 100 feet from the town’s elementary school, and about a quarter mile from the center of town.


If they’re not gonna bother clearing the one part of town where people actually have a reason to travel to, imagine what the rest of Hubbardston looked like.





19. Spencer

I mean, is anyone surprised? It’s Spencahhh. This is Route 31, which after Route 9 is easily the busiest road in town:


The speed limit is 40, which isn’t recommended unless you wanna destroy your shocks. The Allies had an easier time invading Germany than Spencerites do traveling into Charlton. It’s the worst road I’ve ever seen. And the only way to make it worse is to cover in in 12 inches of snow and then forget to plow it.









And that’s a main road. The side streets were even worse than Superintendent Tracy Crowe’s leadership ability.





20. North Brookfield

What else? Everyone knows North Brookfield is a death trap. It’s what realtors warn you about before buying a home there. You cannot live in this town if you don’t have four wheel drive. It’a a great way to keep social justice warriors out. The crime rate is low and vagrants generally stay far away. But the downside is that the DPW hasn’t worked since the Truman administration. White shit, brown shit, gray shit. North Brookfield is covered in all of it. It’s one gigantic slip n’ slide for residents, and only residents. Because unless you live there, or you’re on a Turtleboy bone ride, you have absolutely no reason to ever travel through North Brookfield.













You agree with our list? And who do you think is gonna get last place on the next bone ride. We’re pretty sure we’re gonna try to hit up 20 of these 25 towns:

Oxford, Charlton, Sturbridge, Southbridge, Dudley, Webster, Douglas, Uxbridge, Northbridge, Sutton, Millbury, Grafton, Upton, Hopkinton, Westboro, Northboro, Shrewsbury, Boylston, Berlin, Clinton, Lancaster, Lunenburg, Bolton, Ayer, Shirley.


We urge you to support the Turtleboy Sponsors by doing business with them. Without them none of this is possible. Click on any of them to check out their sites or Facebook pages.


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24 Comment(s)
  • Buster
    March 31, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    You don’t know what you’re talking about. Most photos of Gardner, Westminster and Hubbardston show a numbered state highway. Rt. 68, Rt. 2A, Rt. 140 etc are the responsibility of the state. You’ll notice those roads are much better than whatever Gardner DPW plows. Likewise, that mess in Hubbardston is the fault of the state contractor.

  • Jodi
    February 13, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    There’s no excuse for poorly plowed or salted/sanded roads. People certainly pay enough in taxes for this not to happen! Auburn used to have some of the best plowed roads but that changed years ago. I think part of the problem is that “people in charge” ASSUME that everyone drives either a pick up truck or 4/all wheel drive of some sort. That’s NOT the case. Not everyone can afford to drive a 4/all wheel drive vehicle but they still need to get around also! Maybe dept heads should drive through the town,(in a car without 4/all wheel drive) including back roads, to see just how bad they really are!

  • February 13, 2017 at 9:25 am

    Ashburnham Mass should be #1 worse…!

  • Linda-Linda-Linda
    February 12, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    North Brookfield does the worst job ever, that is indisputable. Must be a coincidence that our roads look great today. Wonder what caused that to happen? Selectmen get extra phone calls from turtleriders?

    Whatever the cause, thanks.

  • D
    February 12, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    140 and 12 in West Boylston are state roads but are town DPW maintained and hands down West Boylston has the best DPW. Way to go WEBO!

  • But...
    February 12, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Main roads are typically state roads, and plowed by state. The side roads are indicator of DPW competence, and most want to ride that overtime as far as it takes them…

  • Ron
    February 12, 2017 at 11:47 am

    What you didn’t take into consideration is most of the numbered routes and main roads that go thru these towns are taken care of by the state rather than the towns. Thats why most of the major routes were down to pavement.The state is out 3 hours before it snows and 6 hours after it snows and they have a bigger budget that the towns.

  • Tracy
    February 12, 2017 at 11:34 am

    You forgot templeton. Main road street are ok but side roads can be awful. I have personally seen plows drive without plows down and without laying sand ( when back of truck full of sand)

  • Brian
    February 12, 2017 at 2:01 am

    You should have traveled to Athol, the roads weren’t even plowed And some of the side roads are still all snow and we have another foot of snow coming

  • BobnMic
    February 12, 2017 at 12:24 am

    Ya right ok. So the snow comes down. Big time. The weather nerds tell us this right? On the fucking news everywhere? So you plow monkeys put the fucking plow down, grab a six pack, and go fucking plow right? On time maybe? Or no I dunno. What the fuck in all globally known flying fucks is the problem with this idea hey? Jeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeze…………


  • JTC
    February 11, 2017 at 11:24 pm

    You can’t even consider 122 or 122A. Those are state roads, not town. I think the time of day has something to do with it, as well as which roads the sun hits more. Not sure I agree with your rankings, but oh well. All the main roads are ok. The side roads always suck. Anyway…I’d rather live in a town than Worcester. Been there…done that….moved away.

  • Stu Pidazzo
    February 11, 2017 at 9:49 pm

    How were the sidewalks on Cedar Street in Fitchburg? I hear they have a problem with home owners not shovelling their sidwalks.

      February 11, 2017 at 10:49 pm

      You MOTHERFUCKER! I’ll have you know my boyfriend is a ex-parks and rec employee. He does the snowblowing for me if you get my drift.

  • Justin
    February 11, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    Very scientific! Good job factoring in Town Road vs State Road. Time Of Day. Total accumulation etc. Good job driving high too.

  • Hubbardston Rules
    February 11, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    People who live out in the boonies actually ask the town not to plow the roads.

    Their theory is they won’t have stoners from Worcester aimlessly driving around their town in used Nissan Maximas and giving the town a bad name.

  • Bill
    February 11, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    Dude, as one who drives through North Brookfield everyday, you are dead on. Worst DPW around, except for . . . Templeton. You missed the best of the worst. They see no blacktop in Templeton until April, except for 202 which the state does. Worst town BY FAR!

  • Diane Woods emerson
    February 11, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    Brook station is still pretty busy with busy bodies trying to figure out where the murder was. Buty theory for westminster and princeton is if they dont plow peoe will go slower on rt 140 and mountain road. Not so much but its only a theory. And if you were to look at the town line between the two on rt 140 there is a very specific section that no one plows. They cant decide who should do it. It has been that way for yrs. i live on rt 140 in westminster and this is the first storm that no cars have ended up in my yard or hitting the trees or stone wall in front of my house. Maybe they were expecting the turtle and wanted to make a good impression becuz i didnt expect it to get a good review. But maybe more people will come and support Vincents and the pickles , because since Brian can still sell smokes , the beer and pickles make it that much better of a place.

  • Jen L
    February 11, 2017 at 6:56 pm

    Go to Millbury on Monday after the Sunday storm tomorrow. Worst roads in town. But they actually like having snow on the road because it fills in all the potholes and makes for a smoother ride.

  • Heather
    February 11, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    You should check out Cutler Rd in Warren. What a joke

  • Edward Lyle
    Mr. Peabody
    February 11, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Hell, North Brookfield looked that bad after those 2 and 3 inch storms a month ago. They definitely don’t give a fuck this winter.

  • Chris From Georgia
    February 11, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    Living down south we hardly get any snow so I very much enjoyed looking a the bucolic scenery of New England after a snow storm.

  • Turd Burglestein
    February 11, 2017 at 5:35 pm


  • Alex
    February 11, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Beating three towns is a lame consolation price. When you factor in population, and traffic you realize that Worcester doesn’t give a flying f—k.

  • Mr Butthurt
    February 11, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    East Brookfield does a terrible job each and every year. They have a guy with a F250 come and do a sweep in and out and about 4-5 hours later a huge dumb truck WITH NO PLOW ON IT drops sand only on the way in. So basically most of the time the “sander” is dropping sand on snow.

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