Press Release

Cape Cod Rail Trail Marker

Hiking Across Massachusetts From Williamstown to Provincetown

Amherst Resident Crosses Last Segment of State

Cape Cod by Foot

Amherst, MA There was a question, a desire to lose weight, and a Senate stalwart that led an Amherst resident to embark on a journey to hike more than 300 miles from Williamstown to Provincetown to discover what it means to be a New Englander today.

Sectional hiker Ken Johnston says there’s no one answer to what it means to be a New Englander today because it means different things to different people.

To some, it means being open minded, independent and educated, or simply a Red Sox fan. To others, it means valuing freedom, public education, hating the cold but willing to put up with it. And then there are those to whom it’s about the food: Lobsta, Cod, Boston baked beans, Green Briar Jam Kitchen Wild Beach Plum Jelly,  Deans Coffee Syrup, Maine Blueberries, and Marshmallow Fluff.

“I’ve been a 9-5er most of my life and over the past few years, I’ve felt a strong desire to find movement, and new dreams beyond the computer desk; I wanted to do something that would invigorate my mind and body with wholesome, nutritious movement. I was thinking about that for a while when, in August 2009, I was very moved by tributes paid to the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy. His love of Massachusetts inspired me to make this journey from the Berkshire Hills to the Cape Cod sea coast to experience some of what he admired about Massachusetts. It took time to get the project going but it’s been an incredible experience and, I hope, just the beginning of a lifelong pursuit. Sectional hiking – a large goal broken down into small components – is something anyone can do. I hope to be a role model for other people looking for this kind of personal growth.”

Ken will be walking through towns in your newspaper’s coverage area this Saturday and Sunday, September 9-10, 2017. Along the way he’ll be asking people about what being a New Englander means to them. He’d be delighted to meet and talk with your community or a staff writer from your organization about his MassWalk.

For more information, or to arrange an interview, contact Ken Johnston at