Suggested Events for May 31st – June 6th, 2014

Discover fun and educational events happening this week in western Massachusetts, along with announcements, upcoming events, links, resources and the HFVS podcast.

SUGGEST AN EVENT

“Seeing Hilltown Families on the internet when we were in Providence gave us the reassurance and confidence that the area we were thinking of moving to was going to be full of quality activities that resonated with our lifestyle. – We found that to be not only true about the schools, parent centers, and child-centered activities, but that the people as well! What a great resource Hilltown Families has been to connect us all, bring forward great seasonal ideas, inspiration, and activities – helping to enrich where we are by bringing to the surface all these wonderful treasures of families to connect with!” – Angie Gregory (Northampton, MA)

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program or service opportunity for youth/families happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our “Suggest An Event” bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness and costs before attending.

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families… help us help you! Click HERE to find out more.

SUMMER CAMPS IN WESTERN MA

Summer Camps in  Massachusetts

“Hilltown Families continues to be my go-to place for family events. I really appreciated the organized list of summer camps!”

Over 50 Summer Camps to choose from! Now is the time to start signing up for summer camp! Check out our featured post, 2014 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a comprehensive list of over 50 summer camps & programs in the region! Summer opportunities featured range from music, art, farming, theater, dance, science, nature, sports, speaking, yoga, rock ‘n roll… to traditional summer day or overnight camps/programs! There’s something for all ages, toddlers to teens! Check it out and start making your summer plans! — Do you have a summer camp or program you’d like to have included in our comprehensive list? Find out how you can submit your listing HERE.

BULLETIN BOARD

Jun 7

Grab your favorite stuffed animal and go wild at The Carle’s 9th Annual Children’s Book Festival! On Saturday, June 7th from 10 am – 4 pm, join the Museum for a fun-filled celebration of creatures big and small. Meet authors Nick Bruel and Peter McCarty, get a picture of your favorite stuffed animal drawn by local artists, and go on an animal scavenger hunt. Create stuffed animal houses and make your own animal ears! Meet Bright Spot Therapy Dogs and amazing live animals from the Hitchcock Center for the Environment. Each attending child will receive a FREE copy of What’s Your Favorite Animal?, a new book by Eric Carle & Friends while supplies last. All events are free with Museum Admission. For more information, visit www.carlemuseum.org

Jun 8

The Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts, will host an afternoon of gardening activities for all ages on Sunday, June 8 from 1-4 p.m. during the Museum’s annual Garden Days. Featured events include a children’s garden tour at 1:30 pm and a historic landscape tour at 2:30 pm with historian Marta McDowell. McDowell will sign copies of her new book, Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life. Under the craft tent, visitors may start their own herbarium, just as Dickinson did as a young girl, and ask gardening questions at the “Ask a Master Gardener” table! For details and complete schedule, visit www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org/gardendays. With questions, email edmprograms@emilydickinsonmuseum.org or call 413-542-2034.

Jun 23-Aug 15

The Bement School offers summer programs for children from 4 to 15 years old. Children have the opportunity to enjoy the fun of a traditional day camp and help create their own schedule by choosing from our wide range of unique activities. The Junior Camp provides a safe, nurturing camp experience for our youngest campers. The Adventure Day Camp offers activity choices that include Chinese, cooking, rocketry, sports, nature, arts and crafts, and swimming. The Counselor-in-Training program gives young teenagers experience working with children and developing valuable job skills while still enjoying the fun of summer camp. Summer programs run from June 23 to August 15. Visit their website or email summer@bement.org for more information!

Featured Ad: Sweet RootsSweet Roots Gardens offers kids yoga programs, a kids CSA program and garden installation services. Learn and play in the garden this season! Big Kids Yoga at Second Chances, Fridays May 23- June 13 (sign up for single sessions or all 4). Children learn body awareness, mindful breathing and have fun through movement. Kids CSA at Sweet Roots Gardens in South Deerfield, July 8-August 5. Engaging garden and art activities for little ones and a snack share of veggies to take home. Free art activities for kids at Sweet Roots stand at Wednesday Kendrick Park farmers market in Amherst, 2-6. Sweet Roots also provides help with your home garden too! Grow a garden with your children this season and get the help you need to continue on your own. Contact saracoblyn@gmail.com; www.sweetrootsgardens.com.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer program, school, community event, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter, reaching thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our enhanced publicity packages and options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Hilltown Families & The Art Garden present, “We ❤ the Deerfield River,” the final community-service through art event in a series of five free family community service nights! Engaging your family in community service teaches kids positive values while opening up channels of communication between parent and child, and can increase their participation as future volunteers. At this event we will be focusing on what we love about the Deerfield River Watershed and preparing for the annual Deerfield RiverFest’s Frog and Flower parade on June 7. Be a part of creating large cardboard fish, frogs and flowers for the parade, as well as individual processional artworks. All ages can participate! Materials provided. Takes place on Friday, June 6th from 4-7pm at The Art Garden in Shelburne Falls, MA!

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! We are continuing to offer tickets to Dean’s Beans Music from Around the World monthly concert series at the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, MA. For June we have two pairs of tickets to giveaway to see Zvuloon Dub System, Israel’s leading World-Reggae band, at the Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, MA on Wednesday, June 11th at 8:30pm. Win a pair of tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. These concerts are also a great opportunity to expose older children with audience skills to music from around the world!

Become a Contributing WriterJOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to info@hilltownfamilies.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
May 31st-June 6th, 2014

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets

Berkshire Family Fun

Events Happening in the Hilltowns | ♦ On-going Events

Saturday, May 31st, 2014

Hilltown Family Variety Show9-10am – HILLTOWN FAMILY VARIETY SHOW: Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org Bear & Furry Animal Episode with Guest DJ, Suzi Shelton! Encore of Saturday’s broadcast airs Sunday morning from 7-8am and podcast is posted here on Hilltown Families immediately following Sunday’s broadcast. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcasts anytime. Click here to choose from 7 years!

Saturday, May 31, TBA – LOCAL HISTORY/ARCHAEOLOGY: The Emily Dickinson Museum has asked UMass Amherst Archaeological Services to help excavate the site of Emily Dickinson’s conservatory, which was built in 1855, and help reconstruct it. This conservatory was small but important to the poet, who loved plants and spending time in the greenhouse. The reconstructed conservatory will expand visitors’ understanding of Dickinson’s home life, values, and sources of inspiration. The public is invited to come watch the excavations taking place from May 31-June 2. 413-542-8161. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 31, ALL DAY – BIRDING: Join the Berkshire Natural Resources Council for a relaxed day of birding at Hollow Fields. Celebrate summer and look for interesting birds while relaxing with friends. Best for teens and adults. 413-499-0596. Perry’s Peak Road. Richmond, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 7am-3pm – TAG SALE: The Northampton Parents Center’s Annual Tag Sale and Bake Sale is on May 31 on the lawn of the Unitarian Society in Northampton. Come by for clothing, household items, and more. Proceeds benefit the Parents Center and leftover items are donated to local charities. Donations are currently being accepted. 413-582-2636. 220 Main Street. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 9am-11am – PLANT STUDIES: Discover some of the many interesting ferns we have growing right here in the Pioneer Valley at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary with Mass Audubon and Anne Lombard. Arcadia contains roughly 30 different fern species that occupy several different habitat types. You can learn about fern identification, features, and natural history, and then take a walk around the Sanctuary in search of these interesting plants. Be prepared to see ferns like hay-scented, cinnamon, interrupted, royal, and many others. This event would be interesting to older teens and adults who like plants and want to learn more about how to identify plants in this particular group. Registration is required. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. $$ [CANCELED]

Saturday, May 31, 9am-11am – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Help get Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area ready for summer at the Annual Cleanup on May 31. Pull garlic mustard, dig lesser celandine, and remove multiflora rose around the paths. No prior experience is necessary, so anyone can come help out, learn to identify these invasive species, and gain experience volunteering. North Farms Road. Northampton, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Saturday, May 31, 9am-1pm – TAG SALE/FUNDRAISER: Community Action! is holding a tag sale at Edwards Church in Northampton to raise money for their Heat Up! Campaign to help lower-income community members stay warm this upcoming winter by providing fuel assistance. There will be furniture, antiques, small appliances, kitchenware, jewelry, linens, art, tools, and more. This is a great place to find used items you might need, while supporting a great cause. 413-582-4230. Main Street & State Street. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 9:30am-5pm – HISTORY/MEDICINE: “A Pound of Cure: Health Care in the 19th Century” is a special day-long event at Old Sturbridge Village, all about what health and medicine was like in the past. Some of the day’s activities and events include costumed interpreters depicting medical professionals of the time, a medicinal plants walk, a talk on remedies, a chance to meet a phrenologist and dentist, and more, including OSV’s regular daily activities. There is something for all ages to learn at this event! 800-733-1830. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. $$

Saturday, May 31, 10am – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: Learn about orienteering at a special event at Northfield Mountain with the New England Orienteering Club! Orienteering is navigating through the woods with a map and compass only. The goal is to find a series of checkpoints and then return to the finish. All ages and skill levels will enjoy learning this interesting sport, spending time outdoors, and improving their navigation skills. There will be several courses offered (based on difficulty) of different lengths. Please call for more information about the event. 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA. $-$$

Saturday, May 31, 10am – PARENT WORKSHOP: Dakin Pioneer Valley Humane Society is offering a workshop for parents and dog owners titled, “Dogs and Storks: Preparing Families with Dogs for Life with Baby.” The workshop focuses on preparing your dog before the baby arrives, introducing dog and baby, reading dog’s body language and stress signs, and ensuring that everyone is safe and happy. Please register. 413-781-4000. 171 Union Street. Springfield, MA. $$

Saturday, May 31, 10am-12noon – SAFETY/COMMUNITY BUILDING: Learn about how your local fire and police stations operate at an Open House sponsored by the Williamsburg Public Safety Complex Committee. The Williamsburg Fire Station and the Haydenville Police/Fire Station will be open for community members to see and ask any questions. The event is in anticipation of the next Town Hall meeting and is meant to demonstrate the conditions of the fire and police stations. Older students interested in public safety or local government, or those who may be considering careers as firefighters or police officers would enjoy this event. 413-268-8400. Williamsburg & Haydenville, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 10am-1pm – LOCAL HISTORY: The Mill River Flood of 1874 happened 140 years ago this May. Learn about the flood at the Wistariahurst Museum’s Skinnerville Tour – a tour that takes you from the Museum to Williamsburg, the site of the flood, and where William Skinner used to live. The tour will be led by Ralmon Black of the Williamsburg Historical Society, and will focus on the early history and land use of the Pioneer Valley and the transition from farming to industry that was underway when Skinner arrived in the area in the mid-19th Century. Landmarks will be pointed out along the way, and then you can see where Skinner lived in the 1800s and see the site of the Williamsburg Reservoir Dam, which failed and caused the flood in 1874. This event would be best for older students and adults interested in local history and in learning more about this important disaster that happened 140 years ago. Reservations are required. 413-322-5660. 238 Cabot Street. Holyoke, MA. $$$

Saturday, May 31, 10am-2pm – HISTORY: The Trustees of the Reservations present, “Home Sweet Home: Open House Day at Our Historic Homes.” On May 31, you can tour many of the Trustees’ historic homes, including Naumkeag, Ashley House, Mission House, the Folly at Field Farm, William Cullen Bryant Homestead, the Old Manse, Stevens Coolidge Place, the Paine House at Greenwood Farm, and the Great House at Castle Hill. This is a great chance to explore Trustees properties and discover these unique historic homes. All ages will enjoy this free event, which takes place all over Massachusetts. More information can be found in our featured post, Home Sweet Home Opens Doors to Historical Learning. 978-356-4351 x4049. Massachusetts

Saturday, May 31, 10am-4pm – HISTORY/CULINARY ARTS: Experience life in an early New England kitchen at Historic Deerfield‘s Open Hearth Cooking demonstrations! Learn about preserved foods and the meaning of the term “bottom of the barrel.” These cooking demonstrations allow visitors of all ages to see what life was like in the past and the types of chores and activities they would do had they lived several hundred years ago! Free with admission. 413-774-5581. 84B Old Main Street. Deerfield, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 10am-5pm – CULTURAL STUDIES/FESTIVAL: The Cultural Survival Bazaar comes to the Amherst Town Common on May 31 and June 1. This cultural festival gives Indigenous artists, cooperative, and representatives from all over the world a chance to sell their goods directly to the American public. Items for sale include crafts, artwork, jewelry, clothing, rugs, and more. There will also be performances, demonstrations, food, and other activities. 617-441-5400. Downtown. Amherst, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 10am-5pm – INSECT STUDIES: The Berkshire Museum‘s newest exhibition, Butterflies, opens on May 31 and runs until September 1. The exhibit features a live “butterfly pavilion” filled with native and exotic butterfly species. There will also be a photography exhibit by Samuel Jaffe showing the transformation of the butterfly. Families can learn all about these unique insects and even get a chance to meet them at this fascinating exhibition. Read our post, The Art and Science of Butterflies at Berkshire Museum, for more information. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 11am-12noon – SWORDS: Phoenix Swords will demonstrate the history of swordsmanship at the Central Library! Come see long swords, daggers, lances, and more, enjoy descriptions of fighting, and ask questions. Phoenix Swords focuses on historical sword techniques in Europe from 1300-1700. Teens interested in swords and history will enjoy this program. 413-263-6828. 220 State Street. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 11am-12noon – CHEMISTRY: Be a mad scientist at the Berkshire Museum! Along with the help of the museum’s very own crazy chemist, kids can learn how to do exciting and surprising (and safe!) experiments with regular household materials. Kitchen Kaboom! is totally kid-safe, but adults must accompany participating scientists. Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 11am-3pm – COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: The Springfield Community Music School presents “Musical Roots and Traditions” at the Springfield Armory Museum. This outdoor celebration features music, food, face painting, and activities for the whole family. Come have fun with family and community members at this great outdoor event! 413-732-8428. Armory Street. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 12noon-4pm – CELEBRATION: Celebrate opening day at Bascom Lodge with a Native American teepee raising, drumming, mountain blessing, and music. This family-friendly event is a great way to kick off summer! 413-743-1591. 30 Rockwell Road. Lanesborough, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 1:30pm-2:30pm – SWORDS: Phoenix Swords will demonstrate the history of swordsmanship at the Forest Park Branch Library! Come see long swords, daggers, lances, and more, enjoy descriptions of fighting, and ask questions. Phoenix Swords focuses on historical sword techniques in Europe from 1300-1700. Teens interested in swords and history will enjoy this program. 413-263-6843. 380 Belmont Avenue. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 2pm – DANCE: See ballet performances by dancers of all ages at Pioneer Valley Ballet’s End-of-Year Performance at the Academy of Music. Over 100 ballet and dance students from all experience levels will perform dance pieces onstage. Students interested in dance will enjoy seeing dancers of all ages showcase what they have learned. Tickets available in advance. 413-584-9032 x105. 274 Main Street. Northampton, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 2pm – MOVIE: The Westfield Athenaeum is screening a movie for teens today at the library. Come enjoy snacks and an entertaining movie (rated PG). Registration is required. 413-568-7833. 6 Elm Street. Westfield, MA.

Saturday, May 31, 2pm & 7:30pm – THEATER: Amherst LSSE presents the Youth on Broadway Musical Theater Revue at Amherst Regional Middle School on May 31 and June 1. Come local students perform parts from famous Broadway plays like Annie, Oliver, Wicked, The Little Mermaid, and many more! All ages will enjoy seeing these well-known plays come to life on a local stage. Tickets available in advance. 413-259-3065. 170 Chestnut Street. Amherst, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 2pm & 7:30pm – THEATER: The Pittsfield High School drama department, Proteus, presents a production of Cats, based on the Broadway play of the same name and T.S. Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats. The musical is about a tribe of cats called the Jellicles. This play is the second longest-running show in Broadway history, and audience members will enjoy seeing it performed by talented local students. Ticket reservations can be made in advance. 413-499-9535 x1102. 300 East Street. Pittsfield, MA. $

Saturday, May 31, 2:30pm – HISTORY: Immediately following The Trustees of Reservations‘ “Home Sweet Home” open house event at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead, UMass Afro-American Studies Professor Manisha Sinha will present a lecture titled, “Did the Abolitionists Cause the Civil War?” Students of all ages can learn about the importance of the anti-slavery movement, who some of the most prominent abolitionists were, and how the work they did led to the official abolishment of slavery. 413-532-1631 x10. 207 Bryant Road. Cummington, MA. >$

Saturday, May 31, 3pm-6pm – CRAFTS/SKILL SHARING: Hadley Creates: An Afternoon of Learning and Making with Local Artisans is an event at Stone Soup Farm that features workshops on glass beadmaking, textured metal jewelry, hand papermaking, and upcycling fused plastic. Four local artists will lead the workshops, which teach participants the basics of each craft and will give them a chance to get creative making things and learning new skills. Hadley Creates is best for kids ages 8 and up. Space is limited, so register ASAP. 81 Rocky Hill Road. Hadley, MA. $-$$

Saturday, May 31, DUSK-11pm – ASTRONOMY: Learn about the night sky with members of Arunah Hill Natural Science Center and The Trustees of Reservations at Notchview on May 31. Use telescopes to search the night sky for stars, galaxies, planets, meteors, and more. Compare what you can see with a telescope with what you can see with the naked eye! This event teaches about astronomy but is also a good way to learn about telescopes. Families can have fun spending time together and learning about stars and skywatching at this event. 413-532-1631 x10. Route 9. Windsor, MA. (FREE)

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Sunday, June 1st, 2014

Hilltown Family Variety Show7-8am – FAMILY RADIO: Valley Free Radio (WXOJ-LP 103.3FM Northampton, MA) airs encores the Hilltown Family Variety Show every Sunday morning. commercial-free family radio. Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcast anytime. Click here to see 7 years of archived shows.

Sunday, June 1, TBA – LOCAL HISTORY/ARCHAEOLOGY: The Emily Dickinson Museum has asked UMass Amherst Archaeological Services to help excavate the site of Emily Dickinson’s conservatory, which was built in 1855, and help reconstruct it. This conservatory was small but important to the poet, who loved plants and spending time in the greenhouse. The reconstructed conservatory will expand visitors’ understanding of Dickinson’s home life, values, and sources of inspiration. The public is invited to come watch the excavations taking place from May 31-June 2. 413-542-8161. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, June 1, 9am-12noon – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Help The Trustees of Reservations clean up Little Tom Trail at the David Sigelman Memorial Workday on June 1. This workday honors longtime Holyoke benefactor Dr. David Sigelman and focuses on upgrading some sections of the trail by installing signs and controlling invasive plants. Workdays are a great opportunity to get older students interested in conservation and volunteering. This event is free but registration is required. 413-532-1631 x21. Mountain Park Road. Holyoke, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Sunday, June 1, 9am-5pm – ANIMAL STUDIES: During the spring, anadromous fish (those who live in rivers but spawn in the ocean) make their way to their Atlantic breeding grounds – watch them make their way down the Connecticut River at the Turners Falls Fishway! The fishway offers kids a chance to see directly into the river through a special viewing window, an experience that can serve as the foundation for building an understanding of the life cycle of fish and/or river ecosystems. The Fishway is open Wednesday-Sunday through June 15. 800-859-2960. First Street. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, June 1, 10am-4pm – LOCAL FOOD/FESTIVAL: Celebrate spring and asparagus season at WGBY’s Asparagus Festival on the Hadley Town Common! The day kicks off with a yoga fundraiser and the Festival includes tons of activities for all ages, including art and craft vendors, delicious local food, entertainment for kids, movement classes, music, and more. The Festival celebrates some of the great local food we have right here in the Pioneer Valley. Hadley, MA.

Sunday, June 1, 10am-5pm – CULTURAL STUDIES/FESTIVAL: The Cultural Survival Bazaar comes to the Amherst Town Common on May 31 and June 1. This cultural festival gives Indigenous artists, cooperative, and representatives from all over the world a chance to sell their goods directly to the American public. Items for sale include crafts, artwork, jewelry, clothing, rugs, and more. There will also be performances, demonstrations, food, and other activities. 617-441-5400. Downtown. Amherst, MA.

Sunday, June 1, 10:30am-11:30am – STEM: The Community Network for Children is offering a Preschool STEM Exploration at the Wendell Free Library. Parents and their children (ages 3-5) can experiment with science, technology, engineering, and math in a fun hands-on way, and parents can learn more about how to promote STEM learning at home. Please call to RSVP. 978-544-5157. 7 Wendell Depot Road. Wendell, MA.

Sunday, June 1, 1:30pm – VETERINARY STUDIES: Veterinarian Dr. Dorsie Kovacs will be at the Keep Homestead Museum to discuss home remedies for pets. Dr. Kovacs has been working as a vet in Monson for over 30 years and has taken classes and studied natural approaches that could be used as effective treatments for animals. Come learn about some of the different home treatment options for pets, including how to fight fleas, dry skin, anxiety, ear infections, and more. Older students and adults interested in veterinary studies, or those who want to learn how to better care for their pets, would benefit from this talk. 413-267-4137. 35 Ely Road. Monson, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, June 1, 2pm – STORYWALK: Kestrel Land Trust presents a StoryWalk at Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area, that will be open from June until September. On June 1, there will be an opening celebration for the StoryWalk, featuring face painting, live storytelling, refreshments, and a raffle for books signed by local author Jane Yolen. The StoryWalk is for the book Over in the Forest: Come and Take a Peek by Marianne Berkes and illustrated by Jill Dubin. Kids will love reading this story and spending time exploring this wonderful local conservation area! 413-549-1097. North Farms Road. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, June 1, 2pm – THEATER: Amherst LSSE presents the Youth on Broadway Musical Theater Revue at Amherst Regional Middle School on May 31 and June 1. Come local students perform parts from famous Broadway plays like Annie, Oliver, Wicked, The Little Mermaid, and many more! All ages will enjoy seeing these well-known plays come to life on a local stage. Tickets available in advance. 413-259-3065. 170 Chestnut Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Monday, June 2nd, 2014

Monday, June 2, REGISTRATION DEADLINE – LOCAL HISTORY: Join the Pioneer Valley Institute for “Greenfield: A Town with an Innovative Past, Present, and Future” on June 7 at 9am. Explore Greenfield by trolley at this event, and learn about the town’s architecture, industries, and agriculture. The tour will take you from the center of Greenfield, where you will explore buildings and architecture, to the Museum of Our Industrial Heritage, where you can learn about the city’s early use of waterpower. After lunch at one of Greenfield’s restaurants, you will learn about the future of Greenfield and the potential for sustainable infrastructure. The tour concludes at Just Roots, Greenfield’s community farm. Older students and adults who are interested in local history, industry, sustainability, architecture, or urban planning would enjoy this event! Registration is required by June 2. Read our featured post, Greenfield: A Town with an Innovative Past, Present and Future, for more info. 413-774-5038. Greenfield, MA. $$

Monday, June 2, TBA – LOCAL HISTORY/ARCHAEOLOGY: The Emily Dickinson Museum has asked UMass Amherst Archaeological Services to help excavate the site of Emily Dickinson’s conservatory, which was built in 1855, and help reconstruct it. This conservatory was small but important to the poet, who loved plants and spending time in the greenhouse. The reconstructed conservatory will expand visitors’ understanding of Dickinson’s home life, values, and sources of inspiration. The public is invited to come watch the excavations taking place from May 31-June 2. 413-542-8161. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Monday, June 2, 10am-11am – STEM: Cushman Library is offering a preschool storyhour with the theme of “Technology for Toddlers: Magnets, Magnifying Glasses, and Measurement.” There will be stories, STEM activities, and a snack, and participants can take home a STEM kit to continue learning about science, technology, engineering, and math at home. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA.

Monday, June 2, 7pm – FILM/MUSIC: Join Amherst Cinema for a screening of Jim Hall: A Life in Progess (1999; not rated), a documentary that shows vintage performance footage of Jim Hall, interviews, and explores the creation of his 1998 album By Arrangement. This screening will have commentary by NEPR “Jazz a la Mode” host Tom Reney. Older students interested in jazz will enjoy this screening. Tickets available in advance. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. $

Monday, June 2, 7pm-9pm – COMMUNITY SERVICE/SEWING: Help get Tuesday Market’s new bag share program going by attending a Bag Share Making Party! 100 bags have already been collected but the goal is 500 bags. Come help sew bags or do other tasks. Want to help out but can’t make it to the party? You can donate reusable bags or make your own at home! 413-262-5489. 18 Chestnut Avenue. Leeds, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

ONGOING FOR MONDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: CHP Family Network offers a “gym fun” playgroup at West Stockbridge Town Hall. 413-464-5095. 21 State Line Road. West Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by Otis Town Hall for playgroup every Monday! 413-464-5095. 1 North Main Road. Otis, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn Group at the Williamstown Youth Center for kids walking-age up to age five. Includes puzzles, play dough, riding toys, balls, books, and more. 413-663-6593. 66 School Street. Williamstown, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for babies 2 and under and their parents at the East Longmeadow Library. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MOVEMENT: “Music for Little Ones” at the Pelham Library features a half hour of music and movement for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Meekins Library on the first and third Monday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: MotherWoman is returning to the Hilltowns for a weekly drop-in group for mothers of young children. The group offers a supportive environment for mothers to discuss motherhood and all aspects of raising young children. Takes place at the St. John’s Corner House Mission. 413-625-6948. 469 Main Street. Ashfield, MA.
  • 3:15pm-4:15pm – CHESS: Kids in grade 2 and up are invited to the Storrs Library for their weekly drop-in chess program. Come play with other kids and improve your chess skills! 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7:30pm – SPORTS: Kids and adults 12 and up can come play pickup soccer at Pettingill Park in Cummington. All experience levels welcome. Runs all summer. Cummington, MA. (FREE)
  • 7:30pm-9:30pm – MUSIC: Every second and fourth Monday, the Montague Retreat Center holds a Community Singing Night. Come express yourself and your music at these intergenerational, community-oriented singing events. 413-824-0855. 177 Ripley Road. Montague, MA.

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Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

Tuesday, June 3, 6:30pm – LAWN CONCERT: Musical Moments at Amelia’s Garden, the Amelia Park Ice Arena summer concert series, presents acoustic rock duo CO2. This concert is fun for the whole family – bring lawn chairs, pack a picnic dinner, and enjoy the sunset while listening to great music. 413-568-2503. 21 South Broad Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, June 3, 6:30pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Bill Corbett presents a workshop for parents, “How to Raise a Cooperative and Resilient Child or Teen,” at the Whately Public Library on June 3. This workshop, focused on the behavior of children and teens, will help parents understand why children can be so resistant. Parents will leave this fun and interactive workshop with a set of tools to help them understand their children’s behavior. 413-665-2170. 202 Chestnut Plain Road. Whately, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR TUESDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The CHP Family Center is holding a “Toddler Steps” playgroup for kids 18 months to three years. Takes place at CHP Family Services Building every Tuesday and Thursday. 413-464-5095. Great Barrington, MA (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Come by the Goodwin Memorial Library for “Lunatunes!” a dynamic storytime with songs, movement, stories, and original art. For babies through age 5. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Storytime for toddlers at the Berkshire Athenaeum. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Sunderland Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Every Tuesday and Friday. Old Amherst Road. Sunderland, MA.
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Join the Greenfield Public Library for a weekly storytime! This event includes stories, songs, fingerplays, and crafts for kids age five and under. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for pre-K kids with educational games and hands-on activities. Takes place at Haskins Center. 413-663-6593. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10:30am-11:30am – NATURE STUDIES: Children ages 3-6 and their parents are invited to the Great Falls Discovery Center’s Kidleidoscope event! Kidleidoscope focuses on teaching young children about the natural world using the theme “we share our home.” Activities include stories, interactive games, and crafts. Kidleidoscope runs every Tuesday through October 7. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12noon – CULINARY ARTS: Community Health Programs is offering “Kids’ Kitchen,” a cooking class for kids ages 2.5-5 that focuses on healthy food choices. This class teaches kids the importance of healthy eating at an early age and gets them interested in cooking. 413-528-0457 x1154. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA.
  • 11am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Every Tuesday is toddler storytime at the Lenox Library! Come by for interactive board books, stories, songs, and fingerplays. For kids 18 months to 3 years. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:30pm – STORYTIME: Weekly story time, snack and get-together for preK kids and their caregivers. Becket-Washington Library. 413-623-5483. 3367 Main Street. Becket, MA (FREE)
  • 2pm – FILM: Amherst Cinema offers weekly matinees on Tuesdays especially for people with babies! This is a great chance to get out and see a movie without having to worry about finding a sitter. Check their website to see what’s playing each week. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. >$
  • 2pm-4:30pm – LIBRARY: Kids ages 10 and up are invited to the Hatfield Public Library for Teen Tuesdays. Each meeting features a fun activity. Takes place the first and third Tuesdays of each month. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 3-5pm – TEENS: The Lilly Library hosts a weekly, drop in teen program for ages 12-17yo. Activities include games, crafts, book chat, movies, snacks. 413-587-1500. 19 Meadow Street. Florence, MA (FREE)
  • 3pm – LEGOS: Lego Club is every Tuesday at the Bushnell-Sage Library! Come to the library and make new friends while creating Lego masterpieces. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: Lego Club meets at the Adams Library the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. For kids 4-8. Please call to sign up. 413-664-4821. 92 Park Street. Adams, MA.
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LIBRARY TIME: Kids of all ages can come to the Millers Falls Library for Library Club! This includes games, activities, crafts, and snacks. 413-659-3801. 23 Bridge Street. Millers Falls, MA.
  • 4pm-5pm – LEGOS: Kids ages 7-12 can join the Indian Orchard Branch Library‘s Lego Questers group! Come have fun with Legos each week at the library. Space is limited; call to sign up. 413-263-6846. 44 Oak Street. Indian Orchard, MA.
  • 5:30pm & 6:30pm – KARATE: Free shotokan karate classes are offered every Tuesday and Thursday at Northfield Elementary School. There are two classes – one for 7-10 year olds (5:30pm-6:15pm) and one for teens and adults (6:30pm-7:30pm). More info available here. 802-451-0303. 104 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Come to Gabriel Abbott Memorial School Gym for a gym group for kids up to age 8. The group is all about indoor active play, but also includes an art project, circle time, and a snack. Siblings welcome. 413-663-6593. 56 N Country Road. Florida, MA.
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: It’s Pajama Storytime at the Monson Free Library! Wear your pajamas and enjoy stories and fun. Happens the second Tuesday of each month. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA.
  • 7:30pm – MUSIC: The M.N. Spear Memorial Library is holding a Ukulele Sing Along the first Tuesday of each month. Come to the library with your ukulele (or other instruments) and have fun playing music with community members of all ages. Ukuleles available at the library. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road. Shutesbury, MA.

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Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

Wednesday, June 4, TBA – CARNIVAL: The annual Dalton Carnival, organized by the Dalton Community Recreation Association, features games, rides, food, and more! This is fun for the whole family and is an opportunity to get out and socialize with others in the community. 413-684-0260. 258 North Street. Dalton, MA.

Wednesday, June 4, 9am-5pm – ANIMAL STUDIES: During the spring, anadromous fish (those who live in rivers but spawn in the ocean) make their way to their Atlantic breeding grounds – watch them make their way down the Connecticut River at the Turners Falls Fishway! The fishway offers kids a chance to see directly into the river through a special viewing window, an experience that can serve as the foundation for building an understanding of the life cycle of fish and/or river ecosystems. The Fishway is open Wednesday-Sunday through June 15. 800-859-2960. First Street. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, June 4, 10am-11am – PLANT STUDIES: South Berkshire Kids is offering a series of programs for kids ages 3-5 at the Berkshire Botanical Garden on June 4, 11, and 18. The programs focus on plants, seeds, pollination, and other plant-related topics. Space is limited; register ASAP. 413-644-0104 x1160. 5 Massachusetts 183. Stockbridge, MA.

Wednesday, June 4, 4pm-5pm – AGRICULTURE: Grow Food Amherst will have a special event for kids each week at the Amherst Wednesday Market in Kendrick Park. This week, the Common School will teach kids about soil and planting. While parents shop for local foods, kids can learn about some of the science behind farming. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, June 4, 6pm – STEM: The Westfield Athenaeum is offering a STEM series for kids ages 3-5. There will be stories, hands-on activities, and more, all related to the topic of engineering. Registration is required. 413-568-7833. 6 Elm Street. Westfield, MA.

Wednesday, June 4, 6:30pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: South Berkshire Kids is offering a workshop for parents entitled, “Understanding Your Child: Tips and Tools for a Constructive Summer.” This workshop will teach parents to see how simple shifts in perspective can help their children be more cooperative, satisfied, and have more meaningful fun. Takes place at Community Health Programs, Inc. campus. Please pre-register; childcare is available. 413-464-5095. 444 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, June 4, 7pm-9pm – COMMUNITY SERVICE/SEWING: Help get Tuesday Market’s new bag share program going by attending a Bag Share Making Party! 100 bags have already been collected but the goal is 500 bags. Come help sew bags or do other tasks. Want to help out but can’t make it to the party? You can donate reusable bags or make your own at home! 413-262-5489. 18 Chestnut Avenue. Leeds, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

ONGOING FOR WEDNESDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s infant/toddler group runs every Wednesday. Kids age 2 and under can explore age-appropriate toys and the playroom, and enjoy a snack and circle time. Please no children or siblings over age 2. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids from birth to age five and their caregivers can come to the First Congregational Church of Hatfield for playgroup, including snacks, stories, and songs. 413-586-4998 x102. 41 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Cummington Family Center for playgroup for kids 5 and under! There will be stories, arts and crafts, songs, and playtime. Takes place at Community House. Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: There will be a loosely structured playgroup at the Clapp Memorial Library every Wednesday for kids from birth to age five. 413-323-0417. 19 South Main Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: There will be playgroup every Wednesday at the Lenox Community Center. 413-464-5095. 65 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime at the Holyoke Public Library. 413-322-5640. 335 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Come by the Westhampton Library for playgroup the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Features games, arts and crafts, and storytime. For kids 8 and under. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA.
  • 10:15am-11:15am – STORYTIME: Kids of all ages and their families are invited to the Carnegie Public Library for a weekly storytime, complete with crafts, stories, activities, and snacks. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Edwards Library on the first and third Wednesday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 30 East Street. Southampton, MA
  • 10am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime at the New Marlborough Library. 413-464-5095. 1 Mill River-Great Barrington Road. New Marlborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Erving Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. Northfield Road. Erving, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Wendell Free Library for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 7 Wendell Depot Road. Wendell, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly Tales and Tunes playgroup at the Leverett Library for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup at the Gateway Family Center every Wednesday and Friday. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: It’s storytime at the Monson Free Library for kids ages 2-5! Come by for stories, snacks, crafts, and fun. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA.
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Come to the Mason Square Branch Library for storytime, songs, and crafts. For ages 3-8. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Weekly story hour at the Tilton Library. 413-665-4683. 75 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Join the Dickinson Memorial Library for storytime every Wednesday. There will be movement, stories, music, crafts, and a snack. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Preschoolers and their caregivers can come to storytime at the Dickinson Memorial Library every Wednesday for stories, music, movement, and crafts. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 1pm-2:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Every Wednesday, the Salasin Center is holding a “Parents Supporting Parents” support group. Parents and grandparents can come connect and discuss parenting in this safe environment. Free childcare is available. Please call for more info or to sign up for childcare. 413-774-4307. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 3pm – CHESS: Chess Club is every Wednesday at the Bushnell-Sage Library! Come to the library and make new friends while improving your chess skills. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 3:30pm – LEGOS: Have fun with LEGOs the second Wednesday of each month at the Lanesborough Public Library! 413-442-0222. 83 Main Street. Lanesborough, MA.
  • 4pm-5pm – LEGOS: The Berkshire Athenaeum hosts LEGO Club on the third Wednesday of each month. Kids can use LEGOs to experiment with basic principles of architecture, physics, and design. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm – CHESS: Kids from kindergarten to 8th grade can drop by the East Longmeadow Public Library for chess! This weekly program is open to kids of all skill levels, from beginner to chess pro. Come make new friends and improve your chess skills. 413-525-5400 x4. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – WRITING: Forbes Library holds a writing group for children and young adults the third Wednesday of each month. Come do some free writing, story workshopping, and do exercises to beat writer’s block. All ages welcome. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: Pajama storytime for kids ages 3-6 at the East Longmeadow Library. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA.
  • 7:30pm-10:30pm – DANCE: Beginners and people of all skill levels can come dance the night away at Downtown Amherst Contra! This is a great way to have fun and meet new people in a low-pressure environment. Beginners can show up at 7 for a learning session. Best for older students and adults. Every Wednesday except the second Wednesday of each month. 99 Main Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Thursday, June 5th, 2014

Thursday, June 5, TBA – CARNIVAL: The annual Dalton Carnival, organized by the Dalton Community Recreation Association, features games, rides, food, and more! This is fun for the whole family and is an opportunity to get out and socialize with others in the community. 413-684-0260. 258 North Street. Dalton, MA.

Thursday, June 5, 1pm-6pm – FARMERS’ MARKET: The South Hadley Farmers’ Market kicks off it’s 2014 season on June 5 at the Town Common! Stop by the market for local fruits, vegetables, jams, breads, and more. Farmers’ markets are a great place to spend time with community members and find locally grown or made healthy foods. The market runs through October. 978-844-2522. South Hadley, MA.

Thursday, June 5, 4pm-6:30pm – PICNIC: Join the Northampton Parents Center for their End of Year Picnic at Look Park! This picnic is a potluck for NPC families and community members – bring a dish to share and enjoy spending time with friends. There will be a special guest and each family can take home a STEM kit. 413-582-2636. 300 North Main Street. Florence, MA.

Thursday, June 5, 5pm-8pm – PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: The fourth season of Culture and Cocktails continues on June 5 at the Springfield Museums! This month’s event is “Modern Art & Mojitos,” and features a performance by Jamie Kent and the Options and a chance to see the new exhibit American Moderns, 1910-1960: From O’Keeffe to Rockwell. You must be 21 or older to attend this event. 800-625-7738. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. $

Thursday, June 5, 5-6:30pm – HISTORY/MUSIC STUDIES: Stamell Stringed Instruments is hosting a Violin and Viola Exhibit, Guadagnini’s Galore!, by contemporary violin maker, Douglas Cox, through June 28. The instruments are all copies of the famous 18th century Italian violinmaker G.B. Guadagnini, and will represent the span of Guadagnini’s career as he moved around Italy. An opening will be held on Thursday, and all of the instruments will be offered for trial and playing in house. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to see a contemporary maker’s interpretation of the work G.B. Guadagnini, all in one room, examples which will be featured will include: the “Franzetti” Guadagnini 1742 violin, the “Hobart” Guadagnini 1743 violin, the “Burmester” Guadagnini 1758 violin, the “Kripps” Guadagnini 1760 violin, the Guadagnini violin 1779, and the “Nebel” Guadagnini 1785 violin. 413-256 0936. 18 Kellogg Avenue. Amherst, MA (FREE)

Thursday, June 5, 6:30pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Early childhood specialist Erika Frank will be at Hadley Elementary School for a special parent workshop – “Kids Don’t Come with Instructions!” Parents can come together and discuss the challenges of raising preschoolers. 413-584-1471. 21 River Drive. Hadley, MA.

ONGOING FOR THURSDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The CHP Family Center is holding a “Toddler Steps” playgroup for kids 18 months to three years. Takes place at CHP Family Services Building every Tuesday and Thursday. 413-464-5095. Great Barrington, MA (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:45am-10:45am – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Amelia Park Children’s Museum offers weekly arts and crafts activities for kids. The theme changes each week, but the activity is always fun, educational, and often connected to other things at the museum. 413-572-4014. 29 South Broad Street. Westfield, MA.
  • 10am – MOVEMENT: The Music and Movement program with Laurie and Tom will be at the Carnegie Library every Thursday. Young children and their caregivers are invited to this fun, free program. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.
  • 10am-11am – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: New parents and their infants from birth to one year are invited to a support group at the Greenwood Children’s Center. Come share stories about the new little one in your life. 413-565-4163. 231 Maple Road. Longmeadow, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – ROLLERSKATING: Kids age 6 and under can come to Interskate 91 North for skating, roller racers, games, music, and more! Admission for kids includes snack and skate rental. More info here. 413-586-8344. 367 Russell Street (Inside of Hampshire Mall). Hadley, MA. >$
  • 10am-12noon – STORYTIME: The Dalton Free Public Library offers a weekly storytime, which includes stories, short films, and crafts, all designed to help kids with social and literacy skills. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA.
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn group at the Berkshire Athenaeum every Thursday includes stories, songs, and games. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Stop by the New Salem Library every Thursday for nursery rhymes, tales, and tunes. 978-544-6334. 23 S Main Street. New Salem, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Sponsored by the Community Health Program (CHP), Bushnell-Sage Library is hosting a Sing-A-Song playgroup for kids 0-5 and their caregivers. Runs every Thursday. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PARENT WORKSHOP: MotherWoman is returning to the Hilltowns for a monthly drop-in group for mothers of young children. The group offers a supportive environment for mothers to discuss motherhood and all aspects of raising young children. Takes place at the Cummington Family Center on the second Thursday of each month. 413-634-8853. 33 Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: The Hatfield Public Library holds a storytime for kids 5 and under every Thursday! Come to the library for stories and fun. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Story hour: stories, songs, finger plays, crafts and more for preschool-age children; siblings welcome. Hatfield Library. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Join the Emily Williston Memorial Library for storytime every Thursday! There will be snacks, stories, and crafts. 413-529-1605. 9 Park Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 11am-11:45am – STORYTIME: Come by the Lenox Library for preschool storycraft. Kids ages 3-5 can hear stories, sing songs, and do a related craft activity. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-5pm – CHESS: Every second and fourth Thursday, kids are invited to the Mason Library for chess. There will no instruction provided, so this event is best for kids who already have an understanding of the game. This is a great place to come play with peers, make new friends, and improve your chess skills in a relaxed and supportive environment. 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street. Great Barrington, MA.
  • 3:30pm-6:30pm – FAMILY FUN: The Salasin Center will be open for family time every Thursday. Come by for activities to do with the whole family. 413-774-4307 x4. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 4:30-6pm – COMMUNITY MEAL/MOVIE: The Amherst Survival Center serves a free community meal every Thursday and screens a film for the community to enjoy together. Bring your family and come enjoy an evening with your community while learning about the work of the ASC! 413-549-3968. 138 Sunderland Road. North Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm & 6:30pm – KARATE: Free shotokan karate classes are offered every Tuesday and Thursday at Northfield Elementary School. There are two classes – one for 7-10 year olds (5:30pm-6:15pm) and one for teens and adults (6:30pm-7:30pm). More info available here. 802-451-0303. 104 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, June 6th, 2014

Friday, June 6, TBA – CARNIVAL: The annual Dalton Carnival, organized by the Dalton Community Recreation Association, features games, rides, food, and more! This is fun for the whole family and is an opportunity to get out and socialize with others in the community. 413-684-0260. 258 North Street. Dalton, MA.

Friday, June 6, 7:45am – BIRD STUDIES: Discover the birds of Williamstown with the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation and Leslie Reed-Evans at Mountain Meadow. This walk will teach bird identification, wildflower identification, and general ecology. People of all ages and skill levels who want to learn about birds and nature are welcome to attend this walk. 413-458-2494. Benedict Road. Williamstown, MA.

Friday, June 6, 3pm-6pm – FARMERS’ MARKET: The Sheffield Farmers’ Market opens today and runs until October 10. Come by for local fruits, vegetables, meats, honey, dairy, crafts, and more. Takes place at Old Parish Church parking lot. 125 South Main Street. Sheffield, MA.

Friday, June 6, 4pm-7pm – PICNIC: Celebrate Spring with the Easthampton Family Center at their annual picnic at Nonotuck Park. There will be a bounce house, games, crafts, music, a StoryWalk, and more – fun for the whole family! Please bring a food item to share. There will be hot dogs, hamburgers, and refreshments provided by EFC. 413-527-5496. Easthampton, MA.

Hilltown Families & The Art Garden present, “We ❤ the Deerfield River,” the final community-service through art event in a series of five free family community service nights! Engaging your family in community service teaches kids positive values while opening up channels of communication between parent and child, and can increase their participation as future volunteers. At this event we will be focusing on what we love about the Deerfield River Watershed and preparing for the annual Deerfield RiverFest’s Frog and Flower parade on June 7. Be a part of creating large cardboard fish, frogs and flowers for the parade, as well as individual processional artworks. All ages can participate! Materials provided. Takes place on Friday, June 6th from 4-7pm at The Art Garden in Shelburne Falls, MA!

 

Friday, June 6, 4:30pm-8pm – ARTS & CRAFTS/CULTURAL STUDIES: La Noche de San Juan is an annual celebration of Puerto Rican arts, culture, dance, and food that takes place each year in Holyoke Heritage State Park on June 21. Beautiful paper lanterns are an important part of this celebration, and you can learn to make them at a workshop hosted by the Holyoke Winter Carnival, the South Holyoke Safe Neighborhood Initiative, and the Care Center on June 6 at the Morgan School. Families and community members can create handmade illuminated lanterns to carry in the La Noche de San Juan Lantern Parade. More information is available here. 413-322-5643. 596 Bridge Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Friday, June 6, 6pm – LAWN CONCERT: Pack a picnic blanket and chairs and enjoy a concert by Beeline Ramblers at the North Adams Public Library! This is part of the library’s Music at the Mansion summer lawn concert series. 413-662-3133. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Friday, June 6, 7pm – MUSIC/HISTORY: The Buckland Historical Society presents their Annual Program/Pie Social with American Harmony at the Mary Lyon Church. This chorus of musical reenactors will perform songs from early America, as well as popular secular and sacred songs from the late-18th and early-19th Centuries. The concert will be followed by a pie social. Students interested in music, history, and American traditions will enjoy this program. 413-625-9763. Upper Street. Buckland, MA. >$

ONGOING FOR FRIDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

11:30am-12:30pm – PRENATAL YOGA: Open to all trimesters and all levels of yoga experience. No registration necessary. For info visit HRYMCA website or call Courtney at 413-303-1246. Hampshire Regional YMCA, 286 Prospect Street. Northampton, MA ($10 for non-members, free for HRYMCA members)

  • 9am-12oon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Cummington Family Center for playgroup for kids 5 and under! There will be stories, arts and crafts, songs, and playtime. Takes place at Community House. Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Shutesbury Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 23 West Pelham Road. Shutesbury, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn group for young kids at Sunderland Elementary. 1 Swampfield Drive. Sunderland, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 0-5 and their caregivers can stop by Whole Children for playgroup, featuring snacks and playtime. 37 Russell Street. Hadley, MA.
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Come watch preschool videos at the Berkshire Athenaeum every Friday! 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Preschool-aged kids can come to the Stockbridge Library for StoryCraft, a storytime and craft time with Miss Vicky! Siblings are welcome. 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Sunderland Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Every Tuesday and Friday. Old Amherst Road. Sunderland, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup at the Gateway Family Center every Wednesday and Friday. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PARENT WORKSHOP: The Gateway Family Center is offering a weekly workshop for parents and infants 0-12 months titled “Nurturing Your Baby.” Learn infant massage, learn about infant development, meet other parents and babies, and more. This is a great workshop for parents and their young children to do together. Childcare for older children is available. Please register. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Weekly “Skip and Dip” playgroup at Berkshire South RCC. 413-464-5095. 15 Crissey Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Chesterfield Community Center on the first and third Friday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. Chesterfield, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for little ones at the Pelham Library! 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly fitWIC playgroup at CHP Family Services Building. 413-464-5095. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime for preschoolers at the Sunderland Public Library. Features stories, songs, and crafts. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA.
  • 11am-11:30am – STORYTIME: The Berkshire Museum’s weekly Museum Adventures program features stories, songs, dancing, play time, scavenger hunts, and more, and is open to kids 18 months to 3 years. It’s a great way for young kids to explore some of what the museum has to offer! Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $
  • 11am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn Group at Lanesborough Town Hall, featuring educational playthings, snack, art project, and circle time. For kids walking-age to five years. 413-663-6593. 83 N Main Street. Lanesborough, MA.
  • 12:30pm-2pm – PARENT/CHILD WORKSHOP: The Storrs Library‘s Pathway for Parents is a program for families with their first baby (0-15 months). Learn about the importance of reading, music, and interactive play, and how these can benefit your new baby. Please call to sign up. 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA.
  • 2:15pm-4pm – LEGOS: The Dickinson Memorial Library’s LEGO Club meets the second Friday of each month. Come make friends and build with LEGOs. Best for kids in grade 3 and up. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 5:30pm – BOOK CLUB: Kids in grades 2-4 can come to the Hatfield Public Library for book club! Book clubs are a great way for kids to read for fun and then discuss books with their peers. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 8pm – ASTRONOMY: The Milham Planetarium at Williams College will be open to the public for a planetarium every Friday evening (except 3/24 and 4/4). You can learn about the motions of the planets, the phases of the moon, comets, and much more! Reservations recommended. 413-597-2188. 829 Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Hilltown Families’ list of Weekly Suggested Events is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Buckland, Cummington, Deerfield, Goshen, Plainfield, Shelburne and Westhampton Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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