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The Town of Wakefield is situated in Middlesex County in eastern Massachusetts, approximately ten miles north of the City of Boston. It is bordered on the north by Reading and Lynnfield, on the west by parts of Reading and Stoneham, on the south by Melrose and on the east by Saugus and Lynnfield again. Originally settled in 1639, this area was known as the First or South Parish of Reading until the year 1812 at which time it was incorporated as the Town of South Reading. It remained as South Reading until 1868 when the name was changed to Wakefield in honor of one of its leading citizens, Cyrus Wakefield, who built the first rattan factory in the world. Today, Wakefield is a desirable suburban residential community governed by a public spirited, well-informed citizenry interested in maintaining both the natural beauty of the town and in providing a high quality of services and facilities at a level adequate to the needs of health and safety. The town has diversification of industry and employment and the level of wages and employment is high. Manufacturing is the largest source of employment; next in importance finance, insurance and real estate followed by the wholesale and retail trade industry. The Central Business District along Main Street consists of banks, public buildings, specialty shops, and professional offices. Town residents confidently assert that Wakefield is a well managed community. Adding to the town's attractiveness are its two lakes: Crystal Lake, a water supply source, and Lake Quannapowitt, a center for water sports. Lake Quannapowitt provides year-round recreational opportunities; swimming, boating and fishing in the summer and ice fishing, ice boating, hockey and ice skating in the winter. This three mile lake is a popular area for jogging and walking.
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