39 Community Highlights: Bark to Bulbs. Hairspray to Godspell.
Peruse our list below and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play!
Featured community highlight this week: Students in grades 3-12 who are interested in sustainability can attend Greening Greenfield’s 4th annual Science and Sustainability Expo at Greenfield Community College on Saturday, March 7 from 9am-3:30pm. There will be tons of interesting exhibits and activities for those interested in science – over 40 exhibits, a showcase of projects relating to science and sustainability, chemistry demonstrations by the UMass Chemistry Club, the KidWind wind turbine projects and competition, a tour of GCC’s green energy features, and so much more. This is a super fun (and free!) way for science buffs of all ages to spend a Saturday! Call 413-259-1658 for more information. 1 College Drive. Greenfield, MA (FREE)
Women’s History ♦ STEM ♦ Animal Studies ♦ College Sampler ♦ Plant Studies ♦ Music Studies ♦ Spring Musicals ♦ History ♦ Storytelling ♦ Outdoor Adventures ♦ Film Studies/Sci Fi ♦ Parent Workshops ♦ Community Meals
Learn Local. Play Local. is sponsored in part by:
Families can take part in a community celebration of International Women’s Day at Women’s Voices Worldwide, Inc.’s third annual Celebration of Speech on Saturday, March 7, 12noon-8pm. The Celebration of Speech will include historic reenactments, musical performances, and speeches all centered around the importance of including women’s voices in the global conversation. Original speeches will be given by local women of all ages, as well. The event celebrates important women’s voices from history, while encouraging today’s women to use their own voices today. While the event is long, it is divided into multiple sessions, and families can peruse the event program in order to decide which portions of the event to attend. First Churches of Northampton. Northampton, MA (FREE)
In the 20th Century, the role of women during times of war was much different than it is today. “Women Ordnance Workers: From the Factory to the Frontlines” takes place at the Springfield Armory on Saturday, March 7 at 2pm. This illustrated presentation discusses the history of WOWs at the Springfield Armory – women were recruited and employed beginning in World War I, and then again during World War II. Learn about the tasks performed by the WOWs, ranging from clerical to manufacturing work, and how this work challenged gender stereotypes and paved the way for women to enter a male-dominated workforce. Students interested in history, industry, or gender studies would enjoy learning about this important piece of United States and local history at this free program. Call the Armory at 413-734-8551 for more information. The Armory is located at 1 Armory Square in Springfield, MA. (FREE)
Students in grades 3-12 who are interested in sustainability can attend Greening Greenfield’s 4th annual Science and Sustainability Expo at Greenfield Community College on Saturday, March 7 from 9am-3:30pm. There will be tons of interesting exhibits and activities for those interested in science – over 40 exhibits, a showcase of projects relating to science and sustainability, chemistry demonstrations by the UMass Chemistry Club, the KidWind wind turbine projects and competition, a tour of GCC’s green energy features, and so much more. This is a super fun (and free!) way for science buffs of all ages to spend a Saturday! Call 413-259-1658 for more information. 1 College Drive. Greenfield, MA (FREE)
Preschool-aged children can have fun with LEGOs and Duplos at the Erving Public Library as part of a series of programs focusing on science, technology, engineering, art, and math on Saturday, March 7, 11am-12noon. This is a great chance to introduce young kids to STEAM topics! Call to register. 413-423-3348. 17 Moore Street. Erving, MA. (FREE)
Each spring, spotted salamanders make their way across Amherst’s Henry Street to a vernal pool to mate and lay eggs. They travel across the street via a tunnel under the road that was built in 1987, to allow them to cross safely. The Hitchcock Center for the Environment needs help preparing the tunnels for the migration – they get clogged with debris during the winter and need to be spruced up each spring. Volunteers can come to the tunnels to help clear sediment from the tunnel entrances, repair and install fences, and do some general spring cleaning. Students can learn about the salamanders and can gain experience doing hands-on volunteer work at this event. Salamander tunnel maintenance day takes place sometime in March and is dependent on weather and salamander activity. Call the Center at 413-256-6006 to be put on their call list for the event.
Birds of Prey program takes place this Sunday, March 8, at 12:15pm during Family Fun Day in Northampton. Learn about live birds of prey up close, including a golden eagle, red-tailed hawk, turkey vulture, owl and more. What do they eat? Where do they live? How can be protect them? Come curious! Please pre-register. 413-587-4900. Florence, MA. ($)
Are you looking for a fun, educational way to spend a chilly Saturday in March? Then check out Smith Splash! Students in grades 6-12 can attend workshops and classes taught by Smith College students on Saturday, March 7 starting at 9am. There are a ton of great workshops available, with topics like dancing, writing parody songs, crocheting, comic books, psychology, politics, pop culture, games, words, public speaking, cryptography, and many others. This is a great opportunity for tweens and teens to choose a topic that interests them and explore it more in depth with the help of knowledgeable Smith students. A full list of classes, as well as registration information, can be found on the Smith Splash website. The event is low-cost ($, includes lunch) and financial aid is available. Register ASAP. Smith Splash takes place in Seelye Hall. 2 Seelye Drive. Northampton, MA. (>$)
Preschool aged kids and their families can learn all about seeds at the Buckland Public Library on Saturday, March 7, 10am-11am. Hear a story about seeds and then explore many different kinds of seeds by touching, tasting, sorting, and observing. Kids will also help set up a long-term see experiment that will stay at the library for visitors to see. 413-625-9412. 30 Upper Street. Buckland, MA. (FREE)
The Mt. Holyoke College Spring Flower Show kicks off on Saturday, March 7, 10am-4pm, in the Talcott Greenhouse and runs through March 22. Stop by the greenhouse to see hundreds of spring-blooming bulbs and plants. 413-538-2116. South Hadley, MA.
Join Grow Food Amherst for a workshop on cultivating mushrooms in the home garden at the Amherst Winter Farmers’ Market on Saturday, March 7, 12noon-1pm. Willie Crosby of Fungi Ally will present this workshop. 170 Chestnut Street. Amherst, MA.
Learn about sustainable forestry and oxen logging with the Hilltown Land Trust and forester Tom Jenkens at Jackson Swamp on Saturday, March 7, 12:30pm-2:30pm. Jenkens will discuss sustainable forestry practices and benefits, and will demonstrate oxen logging. Learn how these amazing animals can work to weed the forest and help trees grow. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Free for kids under age 18. Please RSVP. 413-628-4485 x4. Ring Road. Chesterfield, MA. (>$)
In the winter time and early spring, how can you best identify trees? By their bark, of course! Learn about trees and how to identify them with Kestrel Land Trust and Michael Wojtech, author of BARK, on Sunday, March 8, 1pm-3pm. Explore East Leverett and learn how to identify trees by their bark – a useful skill during the winter months! Call to sign up ASAP. 413-549-1097. Leverett, MA. (SUGGESTED DONATION >$)
The Springfield Chapter of the American Guild of Organists will host “Pedals, Pipes, and Pizza: Introducing Young People to the Organ” at the United Church of Bernardston on Saturday, March 7, 10am-12noon. Kids ages 8 and up can come learn about the pipe organ, practice playing it, and see the inside of one and how it works. Kids who are interested in music and instruments can have fun learning about this amazing instrument. Piano students are encourage to attend and to bring music they are working on. 413-648-9306. 58 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)
The Jones Library presents a concert by the Grammy Award-winning Parker String Quartet at the library on Saturday, March 7, 2pm-3pm. This family-friendly concert is a great opportunity to introduce children of all ages to classical music. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
The Smith College Choirs’ Spring Oratorio takes place on Saturday, March 7, 8pm. They, along with the Pennsylvania State University’s Men’s Glee Club and several soloists, will perform Mendelssohn’s Elijah. Students with audience skills and an interest in classical music will enjoy this concert, which features many talented vocalists. Takes place in John M. Greene Hall. 413-585-3150. 70 Elm Street. Northampton, MA. (>$)
As part of their Fast Forward Film Series, Historic Northampton presents, “Oral Histories and Audiovisual Archives,” featuring excerpts from films by Abraham Ravett and Joel Saxe on Sunday, March 8, 3pm. Ravett and Saxe will discuss and present their films, which are about music. Older students interested in film and music can learn from this screening. 413-584-6011. 46 Bridge Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
The Smith College Music Department presents, “Concert Conversations,” a presentation about the evolution of cello music. On Sunday, March 8, 4pm, Jennifer Morsches will present “Refractions of the Baroque Cello,” which highlights composers who made a mark on the cello. Takes place in Earle Recital Hall in Smith College’s Sage Hall. 413-585-3222. Green Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
Amherst Leisure Service Community Theater and Missoula Children’s Theatre present a performance of their musical, Aladdin, on Saturday, March 7, 1:30pm & 4pm in the Amherst Middle School Cafeteria. Two professional actors and directors will cast and stage this full-scale musical production in just one week! The play stars 50-60 local students and is a fun chance to see the performance and all that can be accomplished in a single week! 413-461-6722. 170 Chestnut Street. Amherst, MA. ($)
The Amherst Regional High School Performing Arts department presents a performance of Hairspray! Thursday, March 5- Saturday, March 7 at 7:30pm & Saturday, March 7 at 2pm at the school. Enjoy this fun musical based on the John Waters movie of the same name. Email email@example.com for tickets. 170 Chestnut Street. Amherst, MA.
Students at the Anne T. Dunphy School present a production of Seussical Jr. on Friday, March 6 at 7pm & Saturday, March 7 at 3pm. All ages will love this musical celebration of all things Dr. Seuss! Call for tickets. 413-268-8421. Williamsburg, MA. ($)
Mohawk Trail Regional High School presents a production of Seussical the Musical on Friday, March 6 & 7, 7pm and Sunday, March 8 at 2pm. The musical weaves together 15 famous works by Dr. Seuss – Seuss fans of all ages will love seeing these stories and characters come to life onstage! Call for reservations. 413-625-9811 x1364. Buckland, MA. ($)
The Springfield Jewish Community Center’s J-Art young adult theater presents a production of Seussical the Musical. Dr. Seuss fans of all ages can come see this fun performance! Performance days/time include: Thursday, March 5, Sunday, March 8 & Thursday, March 12 at 5:30, and Saturday, March 7, Saturday, March 14 at 8:30pm, and Sunday, March 15 at 3pm. Call for tickets. 413-739-4715. 1160 Dickinson Street. Springfield, MA. ($$)
Hampshire Regional High School presents a production of Little Shop of Horrors, Friday, March 13 & Saturday, March 14 at 7:30pm, and Sunday, March 15 at 2pm Come see this fun musical featuring awesome rock music. 413-527-7680. 19 Stage Road. Westhampton, MA. ($)
Northampton High School theater will perform a production of the musical Godspell on March 12, 13, 14 at 7pm and Saturday, March 14 at 2pm. Tickets available in advance or at the door. 380 Elm Street. Northampton, MA. ($$)
When walking around the Quabbin Reservoir, do you ever wonder, “what was here before the Quabbin?” See side-by-side photos comparing the Swift River Valley pre-Quabbin with the same area today at Dale Monette’s free presentation, “Visions of the Past,” at the Great Falls Discovery Center on Saturday, March 7 at 1pm. Monette’s presentation, which is held in conjunction with the exhibition, “What’s in a Name? Villages, Hamlets, and Hollows of the Swift River Valley,” teaches about the history of the Quabbin and the Swift River Valley through the use of historic photos taken by the Metropolitan District Water Supply Commission in the early 1930s. Seeing photos of these specific sites can help students better understand the magnitude of the Quabbin Reservoir project and how it affected communities in the area. Call the Discovery Center at 413-863-3221 for more information. The Center is located at 2 Avenue A in Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)
Historic Northampton presents a talk by historian Carl Walter, “The History of the Hampshire and Hampden Canal,” on Saturday, March 7, 2pm. Walter will discuss the history of the canal, including why and when it was built, where it was located, how it was constructed, and why it was important to surrounding towns. This talk would be great for older students interested in local history. 413-584-6011. 46 Bridge Street. Northampton, MA.
Learn about the connections between quilts and the Underground Railroad at a roundtable discussion at A Notion to Quilt on Sunday, March 8, 2pm-4pm. Learn about and discuss the Underground Railroad and the importance of quilts at this engaging event. Best for older students interested in history and quilting. 413-625-9644. 623 Mohawk Trail. Shelburne, MA.
Come to the Chesterfield Community Center for An Afternoon of Music, Story, and Song with Daniel Plane, Tatiana Berindei, Rochelle Wildfong, and Jack Barry on Sunday, March 8, 2pm. Hear a story and music on cello, guitar, fiddle, washboard, and clawhammer banjo. Fun for the whole family! 413-296-4007. 400 Main Road. Chesterfield, MA. (FREE/DONATIONS ACCEPTED)
Ed the Wizard will present “Reading is Magic” at the RH Conwell Community Education Center on Thursday, March 12, 2pm. This interactive magic performance emphasizes the importance and power of reading to get kids excited about literacy and reading comprehension. 413-238-5856. 147 Huntington Road. Worthington, MA.
Explore Windsor on snowshoes with Mass Audubon and Aimee Gelinas of Tamarack Hollow Nature and Cultural Center on Saturday, March 7, 10am-1pm. Learn how to identify trees and the tracks and sign of animals on this 2-mile hike. Call to register. 413-584-3009. Savoy Hollow Road. Windsor, MA. ($$)
Explore the fields and forest of the Bullitt Reservation and learn about winter wildlife on a guided trek with The Trustees of Reservations on Saturday, March 7, 10am-12noon. Learn about animal tracking and enjoy spending time outdoors in winter. Snowshoe rentals available. Free for children under 12. Pre-registration is required. 413-532-1631 x10. Bullitt Road. Ashfield, MA. (>$)
The West Springfield Environmental Committee is leading a snowshoe hike at Bear Hole on Sunday, March 8, 2pm-4pm. Ages 10 and up can come on this hike with Robert Gubala, which will be about two hours on some moderate terrain. Participants must bring their own snowshoes. Well-behaved dogs welcome. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register. Space is limited. Quarry Road. West Springfield, MA.
Pothole Pictures will screen the Steven Spielberg classic, Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977; rated PG), on Saturday, March 7, 7:30pm. Enjoy seeing this sci-fi classic on the big screen. Come at 7pm to hear music by Beach Honey. 413-625-2896. 51 Bridge Street. Shelburne Falls, MA. (>$)
As part of their Classic Series, Images Cinema will screen 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968; rated G) on Monday, March 9, 7pm. This classic sci-fi film, directed by Stanley Kubrick, is about humans and computers. The film series is a rare chance to catch these classic movies on the big screen! 413-458-5612. 50 Spring Street. Williamstown, MA. ($)
Valuing Our Children will offer a Brain Building workshop for parents of kids ages 0-5 on Tuesday, March 10, 10am-11am. Learn how your child’s brain develops, how you can help with development, and learn about brain building activities. Parents will each take home a kit to continue brain building at home. Childcare is available. Call to register. 978-249-8467 x22. 217 Walnut Street. Athol, MA. (FREE)
The Northampton Parent Cafe Series continues at Sunnyside Childcare on Thursday, March 12, 5pm-7:15pm. This month the topic is “Being a Great Parent is Part Natural & Part Learned.” Come share information and ideas to care for yourself as a parent while building strong relationships with your kids to raise children who thrive. Talk with other parents about the challenges of parenting and build the resilience needed to be a good parent. Childcare and dinner provided. Open to all parents with young children. RSVP. 413-587-1471. 557 Easthampton Road. Northampton, MA (FREE)
The Collaborative for Educational Services is offering a workshop for parents as part of the Puzzle of Parenting series – “Two Parents, Two Parenting Styles” on Thursday, March 12, 6pm-8pm. This workshop is great for parents who sometimes feel at odds with one another or who disagree about things like discipline. Discuss different child rearing approaches and identify positive parenting styles at this workshop. Takes place at the South Hadley Family Center. Childcare is available and registration is required. 413-586-4998 x102. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
Skip making dinner and head to the Buckland Public Library for a soup social and get to know community members at an intergenerational social event on Tuesday, March 10, 5pm-6:30pm. 413-625-9412. 30 Upper Street. Buckland, MA. (FREE)
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a traditional Irish meal at the Pulaski Club in Easthampton on Friday, March 13, 6pm. Come enjoy corn beef and cabbage, a St. Paddy’s traditional meal, with community members of all ages… and save on doing the dishes! Tickets must be purchased in advance. 413-527-9847. 79 Maple Street. Easthampton, MA. ($$)
[Photo credit: (cc) U.S. Department of Agriculture]
Learn Local. Play Local. is supported in part by a grant from the Buckland, Colrain, Cummington, Deerfield, Hadley, Longmeadow, Montgomery, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne, Sunderland, Westhampton, and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.