Suggested Events for August 16th-22nd, 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

“Hilltown Families is always my Saturday morning “go to.” I have a 4 year old and over the last few years we have gone to many weekend events and a lot of them have begun at the site. From street fairs to live performances to farmers’ markets and such-countless adventures have started here at www.hilltownfamilies.org.” – Mark Donovan (Easthampton, 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.

BULLETIN BOARD

Aug 13-16

Welcome to the Jungle! PaintBox Theatre closes its summer season with Tarzan at the Three County Fairgrounds in Northampton. Directed by Tom McCabe, it’s the classic Tarzan story, with PaintBox twists, audience participation, and our most interesting theatre yet. Imagine we’re at school and our teacher announces the field trip of a lifetime—to the deepest darkest jungle. Have no fear: when there’s trouble, Tarzan swings in to save the day. The show is under the Grandstand roof at the Three County Fairgrounds: plenty of shade, rain protection, and free parking. Performances are Wed., Aug. 13 – Sat., Aug. 16, 10:30am and 1pm daily. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets.com. Group discounts: call 413-320-0517. www.paintboxtheatre.com.

Aug 16

Get Ready for Kindergarten! This Saturday, August 16 from 10am-3pm, enjoy a fun-filled day at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art’s Countdown to Kindergarten featuring storytimes and activities geared to support children as they get ready for their first day of kindergarten. The KidStage Acting Company (Boston Children’s Museum) will perform D.W. Counts Down to Kindergarten!, a 30-minute play with audience participation. Caregivers will receive helpful handouts and activity ideas to try back at home. Plus enjoy films, art making and three wonderful galleries of picture book art. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is located at 125 West Bay Road in Amherst, MA. For more info, visit www.carlemuseum.org or call 413-658-1100.

Aug 16

MumBett Day: Celebrating Freedom Fighters takes place Saturday, Aug 16 from12-4pm at the Ashley House,117 Cooper Hill Road, in Ashley Fall/Sheffield, MA. Learn about activist and hero Elizabeth “MumBett” Freeman, who successfully sued for her freedom from slavery in 1781. Activities includes Civil War re-enactors of the African American 54th Infantry Regiment with storytelling, and demonstrations; living history performances of MumBett and Sojourner Truth; a short play by the Town Players of Pittsfield; tours of Ashley House; children’s activities, plus books and MumBett dolls for sale. Hike Bart’s Cobble next door. Bring a picnic and stay the day! Suggested donation $5-$10; Children FREE. More info: westregion@ttor.org 413-532-1631 x10

Aug 19 & 21

Graphic design classes for kids and tweens in Easthampton! Introduce your art loving kid to graphic design in these two-hours courses taught by Leslie Tane at Eastworks. Intro to Graphic Design for 8-12 year olds will be held from 1-3pm on Tues., August 12; the class for 12-15 year olds is from 1-3pm on Thurs., August 14. What is Graphic Design? is from 1-3pm on Tues., August 19; the class for 12-15 year olds is from 1-3pm on Thurs., August 21. Your kids will learn about graphic design: what it is, where to find it, and the beginnings of how to make it. Supplies are provided. $25/student per class. www.tadashow.com/workshops

Aug 23

Open House at Pioneer Valley Ballet on August 23, 11:00am-1:00pm. Discover the region’s premier ballet training program. PVB offers classical ballet training for children ages 4.5 through adults using a unique Listen, Think, & Move philosophy to create determined, strong, and supple dancers who possess poise, confidence, and self-respect. Known for its opulent performances at the Academy of Music in Northampton (auditions for The Nutcracker on September 13!), PVB’s Open House includes free classes along with the opportunity to observe Advanced Dancers. Meet the trainers and tour the studio. PVB is located in the Eastworks building, 116 Pleasant St., Easthampton. For more information, call 413-527-6363 or visit www.pioneervalleyballet.org

Sep 28

On Sunday, Sept. 28th, you can pedal toward a hunger-free community at The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts 4th annual Will Bike 4 Food (WB4F) charity cycling event. There’s still time to take advantage of the early bird special. If you register by Aug. 29, you’ll receive $75 off your fundraising minimum ($175 instead of $250 per person). Start a team or ride as an individual. With multiple courses to choose from—a 10, 25, 50 or 100 mile loop—riders of any level can take part. Don’t miss the post-race celebration with complimentary food, beer from Berkshire Brewing Company, and family activities. To register, or to learn more about WB4F, visit their website at www.foodbankwma.org/events/bike

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your fall program, after school class, 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.

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

August 16th-22nd, 2014

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

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Events Happening in the Hilltowns | ♦ On-going Events

Saturday, August 16th, 2014

Ongoing Saturday Events

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. The Hilltown Family Variety Show presents Guest DJ Debbie Lan, from the award winning band Grenadilla,(pronounced “gren-a-dill-a”, the South African name for passion fruit) this week. Debbie is also a Teaching Artist in a school, enjoying singing and making music with children in parent/child classes through 4th grade. This week, Debbie will share some of her student’s favorite songs. 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, August 16, REGISTRATION DEADLINE: The 32nd annual Connecticut River Valley Astronomers’ Conjunction is on August 22 and 23 at Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center, but you must register by August 16. The conjunction includes guest speakers, observing, and much more! Learn all about astronomy and telescopes, meet local experts, and become familiar with identifying astronomical features. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA. $

Saturday, August 16, 8am-9am – ANIMAL STUDIES: Have you ever wondered what certain zoo animals like to eat? The Zoo in Forest Park is holding a “Breakfast With the Animals” event, where you can come enjoy a light breakfast provided by the zoo, then watch some animals eat and even get a chance to feed them! 413-733-2251. 302 Sumner Avenue. Springfield, MA. $

Saturday, August 16, 8am-10pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The Heath Fair continues today with exhibits, animal shows, food vendors, games, activities, live music, educational workshops, and more. The fair runs from August 15 to August 17. A full schedule can be found here. 9 Hosmer Road. Heath, MA. $

Saturday, August 16, 8am-10pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The 87th Westfield Fair continues today! There will be live music, kids’ activities, animal shows, exhibits, a craft barn, and much more! 413-222-4067. Russellville Road. Westfield, MA. >$

Saturday, August 16, 9am – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The Berkshire County Youth Fair is a one-day agricultural fair run by youth for youth and is open to kids ages 5-18. There will be exhibits, food, games, horses, live entertainment, and more! Takes place at Berkshire County 4-H Fairgrounds. 413-448-8285. Utility Drive. Pittsfield, MA.

Saturday, August 16, 9am-10pm – HORSE SHOW: Come to the Eastern States Exposition’s Coliseum for the Massachusetts Morgan Horse Show. More than 400 Morgan horses will compete in a variety of athletic events, including English and Western pleasure, pleasure driving, carriage driving, dressage, and more. 413-246-8757. 1305 Memorial Avenue. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 9am-1pm – NATURE STUDIES/LOCAL HISTORY: Go for a ghost town hike through Tamarack Hollow and Windsor State Forest. Learn about local history by exploring 18th Century cellar holes, stone walls, an old dairy and maple sugar farm, and more. Best for older students and adults. Registration required. 413-584-3009. 1515 Savoy Hollow Road. Windsor, MA. $$

Saturday, August 16, 10am-3pm – KINDERGARTEN READINESS: The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art presents Countdown to Kindergarten, a fun-filled day of storytimes and activities to get kids excited and ready for kindergarten. KidStage Acting Company will perform D.W. Counts Down to Kindergarten!, a play with audience participation that stars characters from Arthur. There will also be a special storytime and book signing with Lita Judge (2pm), author of Flight School. This event will help both kids and parents prepare for the transition to kindergarten with fun activities and information. Free with museum admission. 413-658-1100. 125 West Bay Road. Amherst, MA. $

Saturday, August 16, 10am-3pm – HISTORY: The Sheffield Historical Society has the Milt Barnum All American Tool Exhibit on display through August 17 at the Old Stone Store. Come see and learn about historic tools used for a variety of trades at this fascinating exhibit. 413-229-2694. Main Street. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 10am-4pm – FAIR: The third Saturday of June, July, August, and September, attend the Country Fair at Herman Melville’s Arrowhead. There will be crafters, food, activities, and music. 413-442-1793. 780 Holmes Road. Pittsfield, MA.

Saturday, August 16, 10:30am & 1pm – THEATER: Paintbox Theatre presents a performance of Tarzan at the Three County Fairgrounds on August 13, 14, 15, and 16. All ages will enjoy this fun, interactive, and educational performance! Tickets available in advance. 413-210-1898. Fair Street. Northampton, MA. $$

Saturday, August 16, 11am – SPORTS: Gain experience playing tennis at the Hilltop Tennis Jamboree at the Chesterfield Tennis Courts. This is a fun tennis competition for all skill levels open to adults and older teens – everyone will play five games with a random partner. Email dianabiag@me.com for more information or to sign up by Friday evening. Chesterfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 11am – CHILDREN’S PERFORMANCE: Children’s Summer Theater, presented by 22 News, takes place every Saturday at the Eastfield Mall. This week, come enjoy a performance by the Toe Jam Band. Those who attend will receive food court coupons and will be entered to win a gift card to the mall. 1655 Boston Road. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, August 16, 11am-4pm – TOUCH A TRUCK: The MassMutual Center is holding a Touch a Truck event for families on August 16. Kids can come get up close to tons of different types of vehicles – police cars, fire trucks, ambulances, buses, and more! Kids and adults can meet and talk to the drivers of these vehicles to learn more about how they work and what they are used for. There will also be activities, a bouncy house, a presentation by The Zoo in Forest Park, storytime, and more. 413-787-6610. 1277 Main Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 11am-8pm – CULTURAL FESTIVAL: Celebrate Greek culture with St. George Greek Orthodox Church at Greek Fest 2014! There will be Greek food and pastries, music, dancing, raffles, a church tour, and more. 73 Bradford Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 12noon-4pm – CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES: The Play Workshop is offering a free Pop Up Adventure Playground at the Maine’s Field. Here kids can engage in creative free play with different materials and have a ton of fun with their peers. 413-588-2208. Riverside Drive. Florence, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 12noon-4pm – AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES/LOCAL HISTORY: Join The Trustees of Reservations as they commemorate the 233rd anniversary of Elizabeth “Mum Bett” Freeman’s famous “freedom suit,” a case she won with the ruling that slavery was illegal. At this event, Tammy Denease will perform a living history performance about Freeman, the Peter Brace Bridge of the Massachusetts 54th Colored Troops Company will present demonstrations and drills, the Town Players of Pittsfield will present “MumBett’s Minute,” there will be a conservation between Freeman and Sojourner Truth, a reading of the Sheffield Resolve, Ashley House tours, and more. MumBett Day is a great chance to recognize this important historical figure and learn about her life and legacy. 413-298-3239 x3013. 117 Cooper Hill Road. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 1pm – NATURE STUDIES: Join the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation for an interpretive hike at Pine Cobble. Learn about the natural history of the site, as well as the geology, plants, and animals of the surrounding area. This hike is free and open to all ages. Meet at Sheep Hill. 413-458-2494. 671 Cold Spring Road. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 1pm – HISTORY: Learn about the Springfield Armory‘s historic weapons at a Blank Firing Demonstration. Visitors can see the weapons, hear the rifles blasting, and smell the burning gunpowder at this demonstration. Seeing the firing demonstration can teach students of all ages about historic weapons and what the Springfield Armory was used for in the past. 413-734-8551. 1 Armory Square. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, August 16, 1pm-5pm – REPAIR CAFE: Do you want to learn more about fixing things? Or do you have a broken item that you would like someone else to fix? Then come to the Pittsfield Repair Cafe, which takes place in the basement of St. Stephen’s Church. Repair Cafes encourage people to repair what they already own, instead of tossing it in the trash and buying a new one, therefore supporting sustainability. They also encourage collaborative consumption, in which people share their skills and services with one another to teach, help, etc. 67 East Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 1:30pm-3:30pm – ARTS & CRAFTS/UPCYCLING: Make a recycled robot with the Belding Memorial Library at the Ashfield Transfer Station! Use materials like metal cans, nuts, bolts, fiber, and more to make cool robots. There will also be a StoryWalk for younger kids. Call or stop by the library to sign up. 413-628-4414. Route 112. Ashfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, August 16, 2pm – HISTORY: Learn about and commemorate Fort Massachusetts at Western Gateway Heritage State Park on August 16. Best for older students interested in history. 413-663-6312. 115 State Street. North Adams, MA.

Saturday, August 16, 2pm – THEATER: The Barrington Stage Company is offering a sensory-friendly performance of Dancing Lessons, a romantic comedy about a young man with Asperger’s and his relationship with an injured Broadway dancer. This sensory-friendly performance is designed to be accessible to individuals on the autism spectrum or to those with sensory sensitivities. This performance is appropriate for ages 16 and up. See the Barrington Stage Company website for more information on the performance and tickets. 413-236-8888. 30 Union Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Saturday, August 16, 2pm & 7pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Theatre Group presents Seussical at the Colonial Theatre. This is the 9th annual production of the play, which combines Dr. Seuss’ most beloved stories into one fun musical starring local actors of all ages. Fans of the Cat in the Hat, Horton the Elephant, the Whos of Whoville, Gertrude McFuzz, and others will enjoy this unique and exciting performance. Tickets available in advance. 413-997-4444. 111 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Saturday, August 16, 2:30pm & 3:30pm – CONCERT: Join the Porter-Phelps Huntington House Museum for A Perfect Spot of Tea, their summer tea and music series based on the colonial tradition. Sit on the museum’s back veranda and enjoy tea, pastries, and live music. This week, 22 Srutis will perform world music on cello and sitar. 413-584-4699. 130 River Drive. Hadley, MA. $

Saturday, August 16, 7pm – THEATER: The Country Players present their first-ever youth production, “Suds and Soliloquies,” this August in the Frontier Regional School auditorium. Kids ages 8-12 will perform Old Fashioned Soap Operas and then teens ages 13-18 will perform Super Short Shakespeare Parodies. Call for reservations. 413-768-9126. 133 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA. $

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Sunday, August 17th, 2014

Ongoing Sunday Events

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, August 17, 8am-5pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The Heath Fair continues today with exhibits, animal shows, food vendors, games, activities, live music, educational workshops, a parade, and more. The fair runs from August 15 to August 17. A full schedule can be found here. 9 Hosmer Road. Heath, MA. $

Sunday, August 17, 8am-5pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The 87th Westfield Fair continues today! There will be live music, kids’ activities, animal shows, exhibits, a craft barn, and much more! 413-222-4067. Russellville Road. Westfield, MA. >$

Sunday, August 17, 9am-3pm – FESTIVAL: Celebrate summer at Outlook Farm‘s annual Peach Festival! There will be a community craft and tag sale (9am-3pm), a pig roast and barbecue (12noon-3pm), and live music (1pm-3pm). This is a fun community celebration for all ages! 413-529-9388. Route 66. Westhampton, MA.

Sunday, August 17, 10am-3pm – HISTORY: The Sheffield Historical Society has the Milt Barnum All American Tool Exhibit on display through August 17 at the Old Stone Store. Come see and learn about historic tools used for a variety of trades at this fascinating exhibit. 413-229-2694. Main Street. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, August 17, 1pm-4pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Learn about the history of water-powered mills in Colrain at the Colrain Historical Society. This informative exhibit will be open to the public in the Pitt House Barn and would be interesting to older students who want to learn more about local and/or industrial history. Main Street. Colrain, MA.

Sunday, August 17, 1pm-4pm – LOCAL HISTORY: The Huntington Historical Society is holding an open house at the Norwich Bridge Schoolhouse Museum. Come learn about what life was like for children 200 years ago and how schools have changed during that time. This is also a great chance to see some cool local artifacts on display at the Museum. Students interested in local history will like touring the Museum and learning about life in the past. Route 112 & Littleville Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, August 17, 2pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Theatre Group presents Seussical at the Colonial Theatre. This is the 9th annual production of the play, which combines Dr. Seuss’ most beloved stories into one fun musical starring local actors of all ages. Fans of the Cat in the Hat, Horton the Elephant, the Whos of Whoville, Gertrude McFuzz, and others will enjoy this unique and exciting performance. Tickets available in advance. 413-997-4444. 111 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Sunday, August 17, 2pm – STORYTIME: Local author Eric Bennett will read from his new book, Noodles and Albie, at White Square Books. The story features beautiful watercolors by Liz Bannish and is about a young penguin’s first adventure at sea and the fish he meets along the way. More information on the book can be found here. 413-203-1717. 86 Cottage Street. Easthampton, MA.

Sunday, August 17, 2pm – FILM: Join Amherst Cinema for Big Screen Classics, where they screen a classic film each Sunday and following Wednesday. This week, see Chinatown (1974; rated R), a 1970s take on film noir. This is a great way for older teens and adults to experience classic films on the big screen! 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. $

Sunday, August 17, 2pm-4pm – HULA HOOPING: Join Hoop Joy Amherst for a Hoop Jam in Kendrick Park! Get outdoors and enjoy hula hooping with community members in the park. Amherst, MA.

Sunday, August 17, 3pm – THEATER: Nutshell Playhouse will perform at Bascom Lodge on August 17. Kids will enjoy this fun puppet performance featuring original music, puppets, clownerie, and more. Rockwell Road. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, August 17, 4:30pm-6:30pm – COMMUNITY MEAL: Celebrate local food and community at the 10th Annual Free Harvest Supper on the Greenfield Town Common. There will be a delicious meal prepared with local foods, children’s activities, educational displays, a home produce marketplace, and more. This annual intergenerational community meal is a great chance to enjoy delicious food and make new friends in your community! Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, August 17, 6pm – CONCERT: Enjoy a performance by Moonshine Holler at Bascom Lodge. They will perform American southern roots music on fiddle, banjo, ukulele, harmonica, Hawaiian guitar, and other instruments. Rockwell Road. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)

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Monday, August 18th, 2014

Monday, August 18, 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is holding several Summer Park Play Dates at Safety Village this summer. Every Monday June 2-June 23 and August 11-25. 413-582-2636. North Maple Street. Florence, MA.

Monday, August 18, 10am-5pm – AVIATION/STEM: The New England Air Museum is offering fun, educational activities for kids every day this summer! From August 18-August 22, museum visitors can design and build their own straw gliders and then test how well they fly. This is a great way to get involved in a fun and creative engineering project. 860-623-3305. 36 Perimeter Road. Windsor Locks, CT. $

Monday, August 18, 5pm-7pm – LOCAL FOOD/CULINARY ARTS: Join Food For All and the Hitchcock Center for the Environment for the final program in their Community Food Systems and Social Justice Mini Series. “Local Food and Resilience: Preserving the Bounty” is a hands-on workshop that teaches canning, fermentation, and skills for local food system resilience. Older teens and adults interested in these topics would enjoy the workshop. Takes place at Not Bread Alone Soup Kitchen. Space is limited; registration is required. 413-256-6006. 165 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Monday, August 18, 6pm-7:30pm – LAWN CONCERT: Pack a picnic and head to the S. White Dickinson Memorial Library for an outdoor performance by TJ and the Peepers. 413-665-2170. 202 Chestnut Plain Road. Whately, MA.

Monday, August 18, 7pm – LOCAL HISTORY: You may know about Edith Wharton’s home, The Mount, but did you know that it’s considered to be haunted? Come see for yourself on one of The Mount’s ghost tours. The tour will take you through the stables and the main house, where you will learn about and even witness the property’s haunted creaks and footsteps. Not recommended for children under 12. Tickets must be purchased in advance. 413-551-5100. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. $$

Monday, August 18, 7pm – FOOD/AGRICULTURE: Join Berkshire Grown at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center for “Beyond Farm to Table: The Future of Food” with Dan Barber and Elizabeth Kolbert. These two authors will discuss the future of food in America and what it means for agriculture, society, and our diets. Tickets available in advance. 413-528-0100. 14 Castle Street. Great Barrington, MA. $$

ONGOING FOR MONDAYS (We are building up our summer ongoing list! To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 10am – STORYTIME: Young children can attend Tales and Tunes storytime at the M.N. Spear Memorial Library every Monday in July and August. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road. Shutesbury, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-5pm – HISTORY: Join the Trustees of Reservations every day for tours of Naumkeag’s Mansion House, a 44-room Gilded Age summer home. The Mansion has all the original artwork and furniture from the time period. Visitors can also tour the Fletcher Steele-designed gardens and kids can participate in a garden adventure quest! 413-298-3239 x3013. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 11am – HISTORY: Kids can experience a day in the life of a Shaker child on one of Hancock Shaker Village’s Young Shaker’s Tour, which take place every day at 11am this summer. Kids, accompanied by an adult, can learn about school for Shaker children, meet the barn animals, and do a hands-on activity. Check with your local library to see if you can get a museum pass to HSV! Young Shaker’s Tour is not included in cost of admission. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. $-$$
  • 11am-11:30am – CHILDREN’S PROGRAM: Every Monday at 11am, Moo-Licious Farm will offer an educational show for kids. Call for more info. 413-569-1700. 258 Feeding Hills Road. Southwick, MA.
  • 11am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Young kids can come to tummy time at the Forbes Library every Monday. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 1pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: Teens can do a fun arts and crafts project/experiment at the Emily Williston Memorial Library every Monday as part of the teen summer reading program. 413-529-1605. 9 Park Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:30pm-2:30pm – LITERACY: Every Monday in July and August, the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art offers a Summer Reading Buddies program with dogs from Bright Spot Therapy Dogs. Kids ages 4-11 can practice their reading skills by reading aloud to one of these trained therapy dogs, who offer nonjudgmental support and make a great audience. Free with museum admission. Call to sign up for a time slot. 413-658-1100. 125 West Bay Road. Amherst, MA. $
  • 2pm-3pm – INSECT STUDIES: Every Monday in July and August, study the caterpillars in the Berkshire Museum‘s “Butterflies” exhibition and learn about their life stages at a “Caterpillar Chat.” Discover some of their amazing adaptations at this program. Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $
  • 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, August 19th, 2014

Tuesday, August 19, ALL DAY – LOCAL FOOD: Support local agriculture and business at CISA’s Local Hero Restaurant Days event on August 19 and 20. Participating Local Hero restaurants will highlight dishes featuring local ingredients. Dine out with family and friends at any of the 54 participating restaurants in Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire counties. For a full list of restaurants, please see the CISA website. 413-665-7100. Western Massachusetts

Tuesday, August 19, 10am-5pm – AVIATION: Celebrate National Aviation Day at the New England Air Museum on August 19. Visitors can board the museum’s newest aircraft, the HU-25 Coast Guard Falcon; design straw gliders; tour the Restoration Hangar; meet an Orville Wright reenactor; fly the original Wright simulator; see the play Paper Airplanes; and more. Learn about aviation and its history at this fun event! 860-623-3305. 36 Perimeter Road. Windsor Locks, CT. $

Tuesday, August 19, 1:30pm – BOOKS: The Family Resource Center Summer Book Mobile will be at Monroe Town Hall today. Kids can stop by for a free new or lightly used book. Families can discover new-to-them books at this great event. 413-664-4821. Monroe, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, August 19, 2:30pm – BOOKS: The Family Resource Center Summer Book Mobile will be at the Gabriel Abbott Memorial School today. Kids can stop by for a free new or lightly used book. Families can discover new-to-them books at this great event. 413-664-4821. Florida, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, August 19, 3pm – ARTS AND CRAFTS/LANGUAGE ARTS: Join Odyssey Bookshop for Camp Odyssey! This once-a-week camp features a weekly book and activities to go along with it. Recommended for kids age 5 and up, this week’s book/activity is “Glitter Calm Down Jars.” Registration is required by August 17. 514-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA. >$ [POSTPONED UNTIL TUESDAY, AUGUST 24TH AT 3PM.]

Tuesday, August 19, 3pm-4:30pm – NATURE STUDIES: Explore Bartholomew’s Cobble with the Bushnell-Sage Library on August 19. Kids in grades 1-5 can come explore nature and learn about plants and animals. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, August 19, 6pm – LAWN CONCERT: Musical Moments at Amelia’s Garden, the Amelia Park Ice Arena summer concert series, presents soft rock music by the Charlie Galvin Band. 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, August 19, 6:30pm – HISTORY: The Noble and Cooley Center for Historic Preservation presents “A Stone Mason’s Tool Chest” by Dennis Picard, director of the Storrowton Village Museum. Picard will present and discuss his collection of period tools and will describe the techniques used by stone masons to make tombstones, wells, and fence posts. Older students interested in history and trade/industry will enjoy this presentation. 413-357-6321. 42 Water Street. Granville, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR TUESDAYS (We are building up our summer ongoing list! To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12:30pm – TRAIL WORK: Do trail work at Notchview with The Trustees of Reservations the second and fourth Tuesday of each month, July through October. They need help repairing several trails on the property. Best for teens and adults. 413-532-1631 x10. Route 9. Windsor, MA. (VOLUNTEER)
  • 10am-11am – ARTS & CRAFTS: Kids can do a fun arts and crafts project/experiment at theEmily Williston Memorial Library every Tuesday as part of the youth summer reading program. 413-529-1605. 9 Park Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – ART: Kids ages 7 and up can draw and paint at the Norman Rockwell Museum‘s Summer Sketch Club every Tuesday this summer. Bring a sketchbook or drawing pad. 413-298-4100. 9 Route 183 Stockbridge, MA. >$
  • 10am-5pm – HISTORY: Join the Trustees of Reservations every day for tours of Naumkeag’s Mansion House, a 44-room Gilded Age summer home. The Mansion has all the original artwork and furniture from the time period. Visitors can also tour the Fletcher Steele-designed gardens and kids can participate in a garden adventure quest! 413-298-3239 x3013. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Come to the Goodwin Memorial Library every Tuesday for storytime! Runs all year. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA.
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Storytime for toddlers at the Berkshire Athenaeum. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 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 – CHILDREN’S CONCERT: Every Tuesday at 11am, Terry A La Berry and Friends will perform in the Roche Reading Park at the Lenox Library. Kids will love these fun interactive concerts! 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – HISTORY: Kids can experience a day in the life of a Shaker child on one of Hancock Shaker Village’s Young Shaker’s Tour, which take place every day at 11am this summer. Kids, accompanied by an adult, can learn about school for Shaker children, meet the barn animals, and do a hands-on activity. Check with your local library to see if you can get a museum pass to HSV! Young Shaker’s Tour is not included in cost of admission. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. $-$$
  • 1:30pm-3pm – KNITTING: Spend time knitting with others and improving your knitting skills at the Emily Williston Memorial Library‘s knitting group. Runs every Tuesday. 413-529-1605. 9 Park Street. Easthampton, 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. >$
  • 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)
  • 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.

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Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Wednesday, August 20, ALL DAY – LOCAL FOOD: Support local agriculture and business at CISA’s Local Hero Restaurant Days event on August 19 and 20. Participating Local Hero restaurants will highlight dishes featuring local ingredients. Dine out with family and friends at any of the 54 participating restaurants in Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire counties. For a full list of restaurants, please see the CISA website. 413-665-7100. Western Massachusetts

Wednesday, August 20, 9am-1pm – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: Join the Berkshire Natural Resources Council for a canoe/kayak trip in Ashmere Lake! You can bring your own boat and personal flotation device or use one that belongs to the BNRC or to Berkshire Community College (RSVP required if borrowing a boat). This is a great chance to explore this beautiful lake! Meet to carpool. Call or email mleavitt@bnrc.net for more information or to RSVP. 413-499-0596. 484 West Housatonic Street. Dalton, MA.

Wednesday, August 20, 1pm-2pm – WRITING: Kids ages 7-10 can attend a writer’s workshop at the Dalton Free Public Library every Wednesday from July 16 through August 20. Here kids can explore the joy of fiction writing, narratives, poetry, and more. This is a great environment for kids to practice and discuss writing – the workshop is led by Sarah DiFazio, a 2nd-grade teacher and speech and language pathologist. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, August 20, 3pm – BOOK CLUB: Odyssey Bookshop is hosting a Summer Fun Book Club for kids ages 8-14 this summer, from July 2 until August 20. This week, come discuss Rebecca Stead’s Liar and Spy. Keep kids interested in reading this summer with this fun book club! Registration is required by August 18. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA.

Wednesday, August 20, 3:30pm-4:30pm – ANIMAL STUDIES: Meet and learn about some interesting reptiles and amphibians with Teaching Creatures at the Library Express at Pine Point. All ages will have fun seeing these animals up close! 413-263-6855. 204 Boston Road. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, August 20, 6pm – CONCERT: Enjoy a performance by Bruce Mandel at Bascom Lodge. He will perform contemporary folk and Americana music. Rockwell Road. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, August 20, 6:30pm-7:30pm – ANIMAL STUDIES: Meet and learn about some interesting reptiles and amphibians with Teaching Creatures at the East Forest Park Branch Library. All ages will have fun seeing these animals up close! 413-263-6836. 122 Island Pond Road. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, August 20, 6:30pm-8:30pm – CULINARY ARTS: Do you like sauerkraut? You can learn how to make it at the Ramsdell Library on August 20! Michelle Kaplan will demonstrate basic pickling and preserving techniques to help get you started. Best for older students and adults. Registration is required. 413-274-3738. 1087 Main Street. Housatonic, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, August 20, 7:30pm – FILM: Join Amherst Cinema for Big Screen Classics, where they screen a classic film each Sunday and following Wednesday. This week, see Chinatown (1974; rated R), a 1970s take on film noir. This is a great way for older teens and adults to experience classic films on the big screen! 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. $

ONGOING FOR WEDNESDAYS (We are building up our summer ongoing list! To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 10am-11:30am – ART: The Norman Rockwell Museum hosts, “Creating Together: A Parent-Child Experience,” an art workshop featuring a gallery tour and hands-on art making. Each week brings a new theme and art style to explore. 413-298-4100. 9 Route 183 Stockbridge, MA. ($)
  • 10am – FAMILY MOVIE: Looking for a way to cool down or get out of the rain this summer? Cinemark’s Summer Movie Clubhouse screens a kids movie (rated G or PG) every Wednesday at 10am at their three Western Mass locations – Hadley (367 Russell Street), Springfield (1655 Boston Road), and West Springfield (864 Riverdale Street). Come see great movies at a great price! Western Massachusetts. >$
  • 10am-5pm – HISTORY: Join the Trustees of Reservations every day for tours of Naumkeag’s Mansion House, a 44-room Gilded Age summer home. The Mansion has all the original artwork and furniture from the time period. Visitors can also tour the Fletcher Steele-designed gardens and kids can participate in a garden adventure quest! 413-298-3239 x3013. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Kids can attend a fun storytime at the Leverett Library every Wednesday in July and August. 413-548-9220. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA. (FREE)
  • 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.
  • 11am – HISTORY: Kids can experience a day in the life of a Shaker child on one of Hancock Shaker Village’s Young Shaker’s Tour, which take place every day at 11am this summer. Kids, accompanied by an adult, can learn about school for Shaker children, meet the barn animals, and do a hands-on activity. Check with your local library to see if you can get a museum pass to HSV! Young Shaker’s Tour is not included in cost of admission. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. $-$$
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Every Wednesday at 11am, head to the Dickinson Memorial Library for story hour. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Toddlers can have fun at the Forbes Library every Wednesday at their toddler time program. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 12noon-4pm – GAMES: All ages can come to the Dalton Free Public Library for games every Wednesday from July 9 until August 27. Board games, puzzles, card games, and more. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:30pm-4:30pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Learn about some fascinating local history at the Swift River Valley Historical Society every Wednesday and Sunday from 1:30pm-4:30pm through September 28. Tour the building, see interesting exhibits, and learn about the Quabbin Reservoir and the towns that were flooded for its creation. 978-544-6882. 40 Elm Street. New Salem, MA.
  • 3pm – ARTS & CRAFTS/NATURE STUDIES: Every Wednesday at 3pm, head to the Dickinson Memorial Library for a nature craft. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Tour the outside of Emily Dickinson’s Homestead and The Evergreens every Wednesday this summer with the Emily Dickinson Museum. These tours teach not only about the poet, but also about historic New England architecture. Some of Dickinson’s house-related poems will also be read on the tours. 413-542-8161. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. $
  • 5pm-6pm – LANGUAGE ARTS/HISTORY: Enjoy summer afternoons on The Mount‘s terrace and hear Edith Wharton’s short stories read aloud by professional actors. Runs through August. 413-551-5111. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. (>$)
  • 6:15pm – DANCE: Come to Jacob’s Pillow for their Inside/Out Performances – free, outdoor performances by different dancers, showcasing the talent of the Festival’s many dancers and choreographers. Students of all ages who enjoy dance would love these performances, which take place every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday until August 23. 413-243-9919. 358 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)
  • 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, August 21st, 2014

Thursday, August 21, 8am-8pm – HORSE SHOW: Come to the Big E Coliseum for the Northeast Reining Horse Show. Come learn about horses and reining and see this exciting competition in person. Reining is when horses are led through precise patterns like circles, spins, and stops. 603-553-5803. 1305 Memorial Avenue. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 11:30am-12:30pm – SWIMMING: Families can join the Family Resource Center for a beach day at Windsor Lake. Come have fun in the sun with friends! Tell the attendant that you are with the FRC and the parking fee will be waived. 413-664-4821. 10 Main Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 2pm – THEATER: The Clark Art Institute presents a screening of National Theatre Live’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, based on the bestselling book by Mark Haddon. The play is about a teenage boy who is accused of killing a neighbor’s dog, who then does detective work to find the true killer. Older teens and adults will enjoy this fascinating mystery story. Tickets available in advance. 413-458-0524. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. $$

Thursday, August 21, 3pm-4:30pm – STEM/CELEBRATION: Celebrate the end of summer reading with a kitchen chemistry pizza party Bushnell-Sage Library. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 4pm-9:30pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The 146th Cummington Fair begins today and runs through August 24. $10 wristband to ride the midway until 9:30pm. Come to the fair this weekend for exhibits, animal demonstrations, truck pulls, live music and other performances, car shows, a demolition derby, kids’ activities, community meals, and so much more! 413-634-5091. 97 Fairgrounds Road. Cummington, MA. $

Thursday, August 21, 5pm-8pm – COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: Upstreet Pittsfield’s family friendly street festival, 3rd.Thursdays, happens every third Thursday until October! This Thursday’s theme is “Art + Industry.” Come celebrate and explore Pittsfield while participating in fun activities, watching theater performances, and eating great food. 413-499-9348. Pittsfield, MA (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 6pm-8pm – LAWN CONCERT: Coop Concerts Summer Concert Series takes place weekly at Greenfield Energy Park. This week’s show features Sue Kranz, Charlie Conant and Friends, and Daniel Hales and the Frost Heaves. Bring a blanket and enjoy a picnic dinner with family and friends while listening to exciting live music. 50 Miles Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 6:30pm – PLANT STUDIES: Naturalist John Root will lead an edible wild plants walk at Holiday Brook Farm on August 21. All ages are welcome to come learn about some of the edible plants that grow wild in the area. 100 Holiday Cottage Road. Dalton, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, August 21, 6:30pm-8pm – LAWN CONCERT: Music on the Porch is back this summer at the Florence Civic Center! Pack a picnic and enjoy music by Drunk Stuntmen. 90 Park Street. Florence, MA.

ONGOING FOR THURSDAYS (We are building up our summer ongoing list! To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is holding a Summer Park Play Date at Look Park’s little playground every Thursday until August 28. 413-582-2636. 300 North Main Street. Florence, MA.
  • 10am-5pm – HISTORY: Join the Trustees of Reservations every day for tours of Naumkeag’s Mansion House, a 44-room Gilded Age summer home. The Mansion has all the original artwork and furniture from the time period. Visitors can also tour the Fletcher Steele-designed gardens. 413-298-3239 x3013. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 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.
  • 11am – HISTORY: Kids can experience a day in the life of a Shaker child on one of Hancock Shaker Village’s Young Shaker’s Tour, which take place every day at 11am this summer. Kids, accompanied by an adult, can learn about school for Shaker children, meet the barn animals, and do a hands-on activity. Check with your local library to see if you can get a museum pass to HSV! Young Shaker’s Tour is not included in cost of admission. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. $-$$
  • 1pm-3pm – PLAYGROUP: Babies can have fun and make friends at the Forbes Library‘s weekly baby playgroup. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 2pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: Kids can do an art project inspired by the Berkshire Museum‘s Butterflies exhibition every Thursday in July and August. Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $
  • 2pm – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Learn about art at Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum‘s “It’s Cool at the Mead” series of free gallery talks, every Thursday at 2pm and Friday at 11am from June 19-August 22. The gallery talks cover a different topic each time, so take a break from the summer heat and come learn about the Museum’s wonderful collection. 413-542-2335. 41 Quadrangle Drive. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 2pm-5pm – HISTORY: Kids can discover Naumkeag every Thursday this summer! Take a special children’s tour of the Gilded Age Cottage, play Edwardian-era lawn games, and spend time in the gardens. This is a great chance to get kids interested in history! 413-298-8138. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 2:30pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Join the Norman Rockwell Museum for Historic Property Walks every Thursday this summer. Explore the Museum’s 36-acre site and many historic buildings. Free with museum admission. 413-298-4100. 9 Route 183 Stockbridge, MA. $$
  • 4pm – HISTORY: Learn about the roles, relationships, living conditions, and working expectations of the 20 servants who staffed The Mount and its property each summer on a Backstairs Tour. Those who are interested in history and want to know more about class dynamics in the late 1800s and early 1900s will enjoy this tour. 413-551-5111. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. $$
  • 4pm-8pm – GAMES/LEGOS: Families can have fun every Thursday atGaylord Memorial Library‘s game and LEGO night! Stop by for board games, puzzles, LEGOs, and more. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, 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)
  • 6pm – KNITTING: Every Thursday at 6pm, the Dickinson Memorial Library will hold a knitting and crocheting group for experts, beginners, all skill levels. Come improve your skills, share tips, and learn from others. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm – PLAYGROUP: Kindergarteners can attend a playgroup at the Haskins Center’s playground from June 19 until August 28! Kids can come enjoy playing, hearing stories, having fun, and making friends. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:15pm – DANCE: Come to Jacob’s Pillow for their Inside/Out Performances – free, outdoor performances by different dancers, showcasing the talent of the Festival’s many dancers and choreographers. Students of all ages who enjoy dance would love these performances, which take place every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday until August 23. 413-243-9919. 358 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)
  • 8pm – ASTRONOMY: The Milham Planetarium at Williams College will be open to the public for a planetarium viewing every Tuesday and Thursday from June 17 until August 14. 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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Friday, August 22nd, 2014

Friday, August 22, 8am-8pm – HORSE SHOW: Come to the Big E Coliseum for the Northeast Reining Horse Show. Come learn about horses and reining and see this exciting competition in person. Reining is when horses are led through precise patterns like circles, spins, and stops. 603-553-5803. 1305 Memorial Avenue. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 10am-11am – KINDERGARTEN READINESS: Families can come to an “I Rode the Bus” event at the Haskins Community Center. Incoming kindergarteners can ride a bus, learn school bus manners, participate in circle time, listen to a story about school, and do an art project. This is a great program to help get kids ready for kindergarten. Space is limited; call to sign up. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 10am-5pm – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Learn about the life and legacy of Emily Dickinson at the Emily Dickinson Museum‘s Free Fun Friday event! Thanks to the Highland Street Foundation, families can visit the museum for free on August 22. Tour the Homestead, the Evergreens, and the grounds and participate in special programs and activities. This is a rare opportunity to explore this museum for free. 413-542-8161. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 10am-5pm – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: The Berkshire Museum is offering free admission on August 22 as part of the Highland Street Foundation’s Free Fun Friday series. Come explore the museum, see their exhibitions, do fun activities, and more. This is a great chance for families to experience the museum for free! 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 10:30am – PRESCHOOL & KINDERGARTEN READINESS: Kids entering preschool and kindergarten this fall can come to the Gaylord Memorial Library for a school readiness program! Enjoy stories, songs, and crafts and learn all about what it will be like to go to school. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA.

Friday, August 22, 11am – STORYTIME: Join the Sunderland Public Library for a series of story hours with Julie Stepanek and her ukulele. Julie will lead the audience in song and movement and will bring a few of her favorite children’s books to read. For children ages 0-5 and their caregivers. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 11am – ANIMAL STUDIES: Professor Tom Tyning of the Berkshire Community College Environmental Science Department will present a program on the “Fabulous Snakes of Berkshire County” at the Berkshire Botanical Garden. Professor Tyning will teach all about snakes – their biology, how to identify them, their behaviors, their defense mechanisms, and more. There will even be a live snake or two for audience members to see! Free with Garden admission. 413-298-3926. 5 West Stockbridge Road. Stockbridge, MA. $

Friday, August 22, 11am & 2pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Museum presents a production of Snow White by Berkshire Children’s Theater, starring young performers from the area. This musical version of the classic tale will delight all ages! 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Friday, August 22, 11am-2pm – HISTORY/SCHOOL: Learn about what school was like for kids in the past at Storrowton Village. “Back to School: 19th Century Style” is a fun day of period school activities, like writing with a quill, taking notes with chalk and slates, fun recess activities, reciting in front of the class, and more. Kids of all ages can try their hand at these 19th-century activities and compare them to the activities of today! 413-205-5051. 1305 Memorial Avenue. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, August 22, 4pm-9:30pm – AGRICULTURAL FAIR: The 146th Cummington Fair runs through August 24. Friday night is “Childrens Night” with reduce rates for the midway! Come to the fair this weekend for exhibits, animal demonstrations, truck pulls, live music and other performances, car shows, a demolition derby, kids’ activities, community meals, and so much more! 413-634-5091. 97 Fairgrounds Road. Cummington, MA. $

Friday, August 22, 6pm – LAWN CONCERT: Pack a picnic blanket and chairs and enjoy a concert by Bernice Lewis 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, August 22, 6:30pm-8pm – LAWN CONCERT: Easthampton’s summer concert series, Arts in the Park, takes place in Millside Park every Friday night. This week, hear the Dan Kane Singers perform classic songs from past decades. Bring a picnic blanket and the whole family and enjoy the show! 2 Ferry Street. Easthampton, MA.

Friday, August 22, 7pm – THEATER: The Country Players present their first-ever youth production, “Suds and Soliloquies,” this August in the Frontier Regional School auditorium. Kids ages 8-12 will perform Old Fashioned Soap Operas and then teens ages 13-18 will perform Super Short Shakespeare Parodies. Call for reservations. 413-768-9126. 133 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA. $

ONGOING FOR FRIDAYS (We are building up our summer ongoing list! 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)

  • 10am-5pm – HISTORY: Join the Trustees of Reservations every day for tours of Naumkeag’s Mansion House, a 44-room Gilded Age summer home. The Mansion has all the original artwork and furniture from the time period. Visitors can also tour the Fletcher Steele-designed gardens. 413-298-3239 x3013. 5 Prospect Hill Road. Stockbridge, MA. $
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Families can attend the “Family Frolic Storytime” every Friday this summer at Gaylord Memorial Library! Enjoy stories, musical plays, and crafts. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA.
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STEM: South Berkshire Kids is hosting a science, technology, engineering, and math program every Friday at the Mason Library for kids ages 3-5. 413-464-5095. 231 Main Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – HISTORY: Kids can experience a day in the life of a Shaker child on one of Hancock Shaker Village’s Young Shaker’s Tour, which take place every day at 11am this summer. Kids, accompanied by an adult, can learn about school for Shaker children, meet the barn animals, and do a hands-on activity. Check with your local library to see if you can get a museum pass to HSV! Young Shaker’s Tour is not included in cost of admission. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. $-$$
  • 11am – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Learn about art at Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum‘s “It’s Cool at the Mead” series of free gallery talks, every Thursday at 2pm and Friday at 11am from June 19-August 22. The gallery talks cover a different topic each time, so take a break from the summer heat and come learn about the Museum’s wonderful collection. 413-542-2335. 41 Quadrangle Drive. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm-8pm – LAWN CONCERT: Enjoy a free outdoor concert after hours at The Mount every Friday this summer. 413-551-5100. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm – DANCE: Join Jacob’s Pillow Dance for a free PillowTalk every Friday and Saturday until August 23. Hear choreographers, writers, filmmakers, and cultural experts give behind-the-scenes insight into the Festival and the world of professional dance. Free and open to the public. 413-243-9919. 258 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:15pm – DANCE: Come to Jacob’s Pillow for their Inside/Out Performances – free, outdoor performances by different dancers, showcasing the talent of the Festival’s many dancers and choreographers. Students of all ages who enjoy dance would love these performances, which take place every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday until August 23. 413-243-9919. 358 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – LAWN CONCERT: The Chesterfest Americana Music Series runs every Friday until August 29. Bring lawn chairs and a blanket and enjoy live bluegrass, folk, and country music on the West Porch of Chesterwood. Snacks and beverages will be available for purchase. Kids get in free. 413-298-3579 x25210. 4 Williamsville Road. Stockbridge, MA. $

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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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