Appalachian Mountain Club. This is a helpful first stop for anyone with questions about the great outdoors. The club's bookstore has maps and guides about hiking and other active pursuits in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. The club also runs workshops and organized hiking, paddling, biking, and skiing trips throughout New England. Programs fill up fast, so advance reservations are essential. Fees are higher for nonmembers. A one-year individual membership starts at $50; discounted family, youth, and senior memberships are available. The club office is open weekdays 9 to 5. 5 Joy St., Beacon Hill, Boston, MA, 02108. 617/523–0655. www.outdoors.org. Park St.
Department of Conservation & Recreation. Most public recreational facilities, including skating rinks and tennis courts, are operated by the Department of Conservation & Recreation. The DCR provides information about recreational activities in its facilities and promotes the conservation of Massachusetts parks and wilderness areas. 251 Causeway St., Suite 600, North End, Boston, MA, 02114. 617/626–1250. www.mass.gov/dcr.