Suggested Events for April 11th-17th, 2015

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

“As each weekend approaches, I immediately look to Hilltown Families to see if there are events & happenings that might interest us. We have often found really fun things to do that we may not have heard of otherwise and many times events are free which is an added bonus! I have recommended the Hilltown Families site to countless families that have moved to the area and are looking for fun things to do. Thank you Hilltown Families–you are a fabulous resource!” – Sara Cahillane (Whately, 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

Check out our featured post, 2015 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a comprehensive list of 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.

Hilltown Families Events

Apr 18

Hilltown Families and the Flywheel Arts Collective are continuing the beloved ‘Saturday Morning Music Party’ series for another year with a breakfast bash featuring food, dancing and diversions for kids with the second in our series happening on Saturday, April 18 from 10am-12noon. Mark your calendars and make plans to ome enjoy a breakfast bash featuring free pancakes and an awesome dance party for all ages! Takes place at Flywheel in the old town in Easthampton, MA. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA (FUNDRAISER)

Apr 18

The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts & Hilltown Families present Family Volunteer Days! Each month, families are invited to attend a monthly volunteer session to help sort food, take part in educational activities, and learn how to take actions to help fight hunger. This is an opportunity for Hilltown Families participating families to volunteer together with their community, engaged in service-based learning while supporting an important local cause! Family Volunteer Days are held once a month and are open to everyone. Our next Family Volunteer Day takes place on Saturday, April 18th, 9-11:30am, celebrating National Volunteer Month. Families may stay for all or some of the event. Space is limited. Pre-registration required. Click here to sign up! Hatfield, MA (VOLUNTEER) (Sponsored by Hilltown Tree & Garden)

Bulletin Board

Apr 11

Saturday, April 11th, 11am-12:30pm — Girls in Science! The Hilltown Land Trust is bringing local author Jeannine Atkins to Williamsburg to read from and discuss her children’s book Girls Who Looked Under Rocks: The Lives of Six Pioneering Naturalists. Following the reading, there will be a guided exploratory hike up Petticoat Hill, where kids will have the opportunity to uncover the natural world—perhaps it will be waiting for you under a rock! Signed books will be available for sale. RSVP with Nicole Rhodes at hltlandsteward@ttor.org or 413-628-4485 x4. For more information: www.hilltown-land-trust.org. Location: Meekins Library and Petticoat Hill Reservation, Williamsburg, MA (FREE).

Apr 11

Odyssey Bookshop: Middle Grade Mash-up! Saturday, April 11th at 4pm. Baseball feats to witches treats and twinkie pies to record highs, this middle grade mash-up has something for everyone! Celebrate Odyssey’s first middle grade mash-up! Odyssey brings you four middle grade authors, Howard Bryant from ESPN, Natasha Lowe, Kat Yeh and Molly Burnham. Whether you’re a baseball fan or love a silly story, believe in witches or like to cook we have something for you. See author info and book synopsis at www.odysseybks.com. For ages 7-12. Odyssey Bookshop, 9 College Street, South Hadley, MA. RSVP at rsvp@odysseybks.com

Apr 11 & 12

Do you sleep under a quilt every night? Have you ever thought about who made that quilt? The Hands All Around Quilt Show, April 11 & 12, at the UMass Amherst Campus Center, will surprise and amaze you – modern quilts, pictorial quilts, and yes, great traditional quilts too. Introduce your child to the wonderful world of homemade quilts! Many quilters will be on hand to discuss and explain their wonderful craft. Something for everyone – 300+ quilts, quilting demonstrations, kids activities, a modern quilt exhibit, a mini-quilt sale, and much more. April 11 & 12, UMass Amherst Campus Center, don’t miss this quilt show. www.handsacrossthevalley.org

Apr 14

More than a Story Hour! Parents and caregivers with their children ages 5 and under are welcome to attend a story hour on Tuesday, April 14 at 9am in the library of The Bement School in Deerfield, MA. The story hour features the book Coyote: A Trickster Tale from the American Southwest. After reading the story, there will be a craft activity and light refreshments. Stay for a performance of Coyote performed by Bement’s kindergarten. The event is free, but please RSVP so the may plan accordingly: 413-774-4209. Directions and more information can be found at Bement.org.

Apr 15

Amherst Montessori School has openings for children ages 15 months through 5 years for Fall 2015! Open House on Wednesday, April 15, 9-10:30 AM. Amherst Montessori School nurtures the child’s spirit, curiosity, confidence, and leadership, building the foundation for a lifelong love of learning. AMS programs feature thoughtfully-prepared classrooms to support the child’s development, and a curriculum that integrates music, art, practical life, outdoor time, PE, Spanish and more. Young Toddler through Sixth Grade. To register for the Open House, call 413-253-3101 or email Laura Miller, Director of Admissions, at lmiller@amherstmontessori.org. www.amherstmontessori.org

School Vac

New England Air Museum will hold April Vacation Break Programs April 20th- 24th. The Museum’s Flight Sim Spot will be open each of these days between 11am and 4pm. The Flight Sim Spot allows visitors to use state-of-the-art simulators with real cockpit controls. Monday, April 20th– Wednesday, April 22nd- Open Cockpits & Museum Tours; Thursday, April 23rd– Great LEGO Race; Friday, April 24th- Straw Rocket Competition. Activities are included with the price of admission on the day of your visit unless noted. Each day docents will be on hand to provide information and to interact with the visitors. NEAM is located in Windsor Locks, CT. For more info call 860-623-3305 or visit www.neam.org.

School Vac

Vortex Dance Fitness Studio is having a Kids Cabaret Dance Program during school vacation week, running 2-3:30pm on Monday April 20, Wednesday April 22, and Friday April 24, and 9:30-11am on Tuesday April 21 and Thursday April 23. There will be a performance for family and friends from 3:30-4pm on Friday, April 24, the last day. Cabaret Style dance is a mix of jazz, ballet, lyrical, and hip-hop which uses props such as hats and canes. Cost: $100/per student. Ages 8-12. Dancing is a fun way to exercise and make new friends. Vortex Dance Fitness Studio is located on the 2nd floor of the Eastworks Building, 116 Pleasant Street, Suite 251, in Easthampton. Sign up today by email: fontaineangela7@gmail.com or through www.vortexdancestudio.com.

School Vac

Vacation Break camps at SHOW are a great place for kids to express themselves creatively and to be a part of a community steeped in circus culture and traditions. Campers 6-12yo have the opportunity to try a variety of circus skills, including aerial and ground work, and then choose their favorite activities to focus on for the final performance. Each week has a different theme for the final circus show and campers are challenged to incorporate the theme into their circus act, making each session and final show unique! Spring Break Camp (Apr 20-24) and 5 Weeks of Summer Camp (Jul 13-Aug 14) available in Easthampton. Mon-Fri, 9-3pm. For more information and registration visit www.showcircusstudio.com, or email/call: info@showcircusstudio.com; 413-527-6901.

May 3 – Jun 7

Biocitizen School presents Drawing on Nature: Art in the Woods: a class devoted to nurturing biophilia (love of life) and the skills of transporting nature’s beauty to the sketchbook with pencils, paints & clay—that includes hikes and plein aire activities, tracking and capturing nature’s emergencies through high Spring. Introductory concepts of composition, line, form, value, texture, color and pattern are used to inspire students’ imagination and expression. Students are provided with a notebook and a travel watercolor set that they get to take home. Tuition: $250 for 24 hours instruction & all materials. Dates: Classes are Sundays, 10am–2pm, from May 3-Jun 7. Age range: 9-12. Contact: 413-695-7994. info@biocitizen.org. www.biocitizen.org

Open House: May 9

Ashfield Community Preschool invites families to their annual open house on Saturday, May 9 from 9:30am-Noon. This event is for families with young children ages 15mo-5yo who are looking for quality care & small class sizes in the rural Hilltown of Ashfield (103 Baptist Corner Rd). Children who attend the preschool participate in a hands-on gardening program, growing a sunflower house & pumpkin patch. Their developmentally appropriate curriculum is inspired by the natural world. In this pastoral setting the preschool offers a 6 week summer program with walking trips to visit local Ashfield artists. Open House on May 9. Tour their facility & grounds and register for summer & fall sessions. 413-628-3248. New Toddler Program Opening Fall 2015

The Harold Grinspoon Foundation is happy to announce that it will provide $4000 per year to qualifying younger students and $5000 to high school students who attend one of the region’s Jewish day schools. Ensuring small classes, excellent teachers and a nurturing environment, Jewish day schools can provide your child with a superb secular and Jewish education. Participating schools include: Heritage Academy, Longmeadow; Lubavitcher Yeshiva Academy, Longmeadow; Lander-Grinspoon Academy, Northampton; and Hebrew High School of New England, West Hartford. For more information, visit www.hgf.org/TIP

Jul 6-10

Journey Camp returns to Cummington for Hilltown families this summer. The supportive staff makes it easy to find new friends while exploring nature, theater, games, music. Inclusiveness and peace building are hallmarks of Journey Camp. Founder and Director, Sarah Pirtle, has numerous awards for her books and music for children. Session One, boys & girls ages 7-12,June 29-July 3, 8:45-4, Woolman Hill, Deerfield. Hilltown Journey Camp, boys & girls, 7-12, July 6-10, 8:45-4, Taproot Common Farm, Cummington. Moonseed Teen Leadership for Girls, 11-18, July 27-July 30, two overnights & campfires, Woolman Hill. Girls Week, 7-13, Aug. 3-7 & Aug. 10-14, 8:45-4, Woolman Hill. www.sarahpirtle.com. Contact: 413-588-6399, marsha.journey@gmail.com.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer camp, class, community event, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, program, after school class, 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 advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.mps and Programs in Western MA. Find out more about this targeted marketing opportunity HERE.

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LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
April 11th-17th, 2015

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Events Happening in the Hilltowns

Saturday, April 11th, 2015

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. 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 over 7 years!

Saturday, April 11, 7:30am-10am – BIRD STUDIES: The Hitchcock Center for the Environment is offering a Youth Birding series for ages 8-13. Join local birder Dan Ziomek at a different site each week (April 11, 18, 25, and May 2, 9, & 16) to learn about migratory birds and how to identify. This program is a great chance to get kids interested in birding, or for kids who already love birds to learn more. Registration is required. 413-256-6006. 525 South Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. ($$$)

Saturday, April 11, 8am-4pm – REUSE/RECYCLE: All-4-Kids Easthampton will be having their semi-annual sale this weekend at the Williston Northampton School’s Lossone Hockey Rink. The sale features a wide variety of quality used children’s clothes and shoes ranging from infant through young teens as well as games, toys, DVD’s, sports equipment, and maternity clothes. 22 Greenwood Court. Easthampton, MA. (SALE)

Saturday, April 11, 8:30am-5pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Westfield Athenaeum will have a craft table at the library today, open to kids of all ages. Come make a craft at the library or to take home and complete. 413-568-7833. 6 Elm Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 9am-2pm – BOOK SALE: The Westfield Athenaeum’s annual Book Sale takes place April 9-11. Come browse used books of varying prices and discover some great new reads! Donations accepted April 4 through 8. 413-568-7833. 6 Elm Street. Westfield, MA. (FUNDRAISER)

Saturday, April 11, 9am-4pm – LEGOS: The Northampton Parks and Recreation Department is holding a Play-Well LEGO Workshop at JFK Middle School on April 11. Come explore concepts in physics, engineering, and architecture while playing with LEGOs. Kids in grades K-2 can come from 9am-12noon, and those in grades 3-5 from 1pm-4pm. Register in advance. 413-587-1040. Florence, MA. ($$)

Saturday, April 11, 9:30am-11am – LEGOS: The Lenox Library is holding a LEGO Build-a-thon for ages 5-14. Kids can bring their own LEGOs to the library and create “Things That Go” with them. Participants should be able to explain and demonstrate how their model moves – a great way to engage kids with STEM while they’re having fun building with LEGOs! Registration is required. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 9:30am-12:30pm – HISTORY/RESTORATION: The Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation and the Williamstown Historical Museum are working together to restore an antique horse-drawn worksled. Older students can assist with the restoration and can learn about the sled and what it was used for in the past. 413-458-2494. 671 Cold Spring Road. Williamstown, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Saturday, April 11, 10am – FAMILY MOVIE: Families can spend a Saturday morning at the movies at Amherst Cinema‘s screening of The King And The Mockingbird (1979; not rated). Kids and adults alike will love seeing this Hans Christian Andersen story on the big screen. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (>$)

Saturday, April 11, 10am – LOCAL HISTORY: “The Structures of Utopia: Walking Tour of the Northampton Association’s Sites and Documents” begins at the Sojourner Truth Memorial Statue. Learn about Northampton abolitionists and the work done by the Northampton Association on this educational walking tour, which takes you to several historic Northampton Association dwelling houses. Best for students interested in local history. Park Street. Florence, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 10am-11am – CULINARY ARTS: Visitors to the Berkshire Museum can learn to make their own cheese at the Learner’s Lab! Suzy Konecky of Cricket Creek Farm will teach you how to make ricotta cheese. Best for older students interested in culinary arts. Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-12noon – FAMILY CELEBRATION: Celebrate the Week of the Young Child at Jackson Street School’s cafeteria on April 11! There will be fun brain-building games and art activities for kids and their families, and you can also visit a fire truck, school bus, dump truck, and police car. 413-587-1471. 120 Jackson Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-12noon – VERNAL POOLS: Come get muddy and learn about vernal pools with The Trustees of Reservations at Bartholomew’s Cobble! April is when vernal pools come alive, and they are home to many unique plants and animals. Discover some of the amphibians that live here, and search for wood frog and salamander egg masses, fairy shrimp, and fingernail clams. This program is for kids and adults. Please pre-register. 413-229-8600. 105 Weatogue Road. Sheffield, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-1pm – STEM: Frontier Regional CFCE is hosting a Free STEM Science Festival at Sunderland Elementary School on April 11. There will be a bunch of fun, hands-on science activities for kids ages 12 and under, as well as small animals, an ambulance tour, and a lesson on fire safety. 413-665-8928. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-3pm – FOOD STUDIES: Bard College at Simon’s Rock Center for Food Studies and The Nutrition Center present the ThinkFOOD Conference on April 11 in Kellogg Music Center. This year’s theme is “The Future of Food Activism: Issues and Answers to Hunger in the Berkshires,” and there will be two panel presentations and keynote address by Andrew Morehouse, director of the Food Bank of Western MA. Older students who are interested in food studies and accessibility can attend this conference and learn about food security issues that affect community members right here in western Massachusetts. Register in advance. 413-528-7247. 84 Alford Road. Great Barrington, MA. ($$)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-4pm – HISTORY/ANIMAL STUDIES: Hancock Shaker Village opens for the season on April 11! Visitors can explore the historic Village and meet the new baby animals – lambs, piglets, calves, goats, chicks, and ducklings. Learn about farm chores, crafts, gardening, and more at this fun event. Baby Animals runs daily through May 3. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 10am-4pm – FIBER ARTS: The Hands All Around Quilt Show happens this weekend at the UMass Amherst Campus Center. Introduce your child to the wonderful world of homemade quilts! Many quilters will be on hand to discuss and explain their wonderful craft. Something for everyone – 300+ quilts, quilting demonstrations, kids activities, a modern quilt exhibit, a mini-quilt sale, and much more. UMass Amherst Campus Center. Amherst, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 10am-8pm – BOOKS: Easthampton City Arts+ presents BookFest on April 11. There will be a community read, workshops, author readings, performances, events, marketplaces, and more at this event, which highlights the literary culture of the Pioneer Valley. In conjunction with BookFest, Pioneer Valley Zine Fest will take place at Flywheel. These wonderful book-related events take place around Easthampton all day, and there is something for all book lovers to enjoy! Easthampton, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 10:30am – PUPPETRY: Community members are invited to a free puppet play, “Little Rabbit Finds Spring,” in the GBRSS Early Childhood building as part of the Rudolf Steiner School’s free puppet play series. 413-528-4015. 35 West Plain Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 10:30am-12noon – OPEN HOUSE: The Montessori School of Northampton is holding a family open house on April 11. Families of toddler, preschool, and elementary students who are interested in learning about fall 2015 admission should attend this event. You can tour the school, meet teachers, participate in an art project and music circle, and speak with the Director of Admissions and the Head of School. This is a great chance for families to learn about the school and what it has to offer. 413-586-4538. 51 Bates Street. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 11am – STORYTELLING: The Jones Library is hosting a special storytime with John Porcino on April 11. He will present “Kind Mind,” which focuses on kindness and anti-bullying. Best for ages 5-8. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 11am-12noon – STEAM: 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. This is a great chance to introduce young kids to STEAM topics! Call to register. 413-423-3348. 17 Moore Street. Erving, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 11am-12noon – BIRD STUDIES: Learn about birds of prey at a presentation by Tom Ricardi at the Westhampton Public Library. All ages will love learning about these fascinating birds and seeing them up close! 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 11am-12:30pm – AUTHOR TALK/NATURE STUDIES: Author Jeannine Atkins will read from her book Girls Who Looked Under Rocks: The Lives of Six Pioneering Naturalists at the Meekins Library on April 11. Learn about Atkins’ book and writing style and how she uncovers stories about real people for her nonfiction books. Following the talk, the Hilltown Land Trust will lead a hike up Petticoat Hill. This talk is geared towards students in elementary and middle school. 413-628-4485 x2. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 12noon-12midnight – ARTS & CRAFTS/COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: The Art Garden is hosting the Hilltown Draw-Around on April 11 at Cowell Gymnasium. This event is a community art event and pay-what-you-can fundraiser to support the afterschool ARTeens program at the Art Garden – come to the gym and make art all afternoon and night! There will be different drawing stations and activities, so all are welcome to come get creative. 413-625-2782. 54 Maple Street. Shelburne Falls, MA. (FUNDRAISER)

Saturday, April 11, 1-2pm – EGG HUNT: Head to Look Memorial Park for the EGGstravaganza Egg Hunt, which features over 10,000 eggs that contain either candy or a small toy. There will be two special eggs that contain “golden tickets,” which can be redeemed for prizes. The event is split up for different age groups – 2 and under (1pm), ages 3 and 4 (1:15pm), ages 5 and 6 (1:30pm), ages 7 and 8 (1:45pm), and ages 9 and 10 (2pm). Bring a basket and arrive early to have some egg-hunting fun! 413-587-4900. 300 North Main Street. Florence, MA (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 1pm-3pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: The Heart and Soul Center for the Healing Arts is offering a workshop for parents titled, “Beyond Praise and Punishment: How to Teach Children Self-Esteem and Self-Control.” Learn the pros and cons of time-outs, consequences, and other punishments, learn how you can help improve your child’s behavior, and more. 413-268-3181. 18 North Farms Road. Haydenville, MA. ($$$)

Saturday, April 11, 1pm-3pm – VERNAL POOLS: Join Kestrel Land Trust for their April Outing with educator Brandon Abbott – “Exploring Vernal Pools.” Families can come learn all about vernal pools and can look at fairy shrimp and other unique species up close. This event would be great for families who want to learn about vernal pools and seasonal change in New England. Call ASAP to register; space is limited. Meeting place given upon registration. 413-549-1097. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 1pm-3:30pm – SEWING/COMMUNITY SERVICE: The Storrs Library needs helping sewing bags for their bagshare program! The Library’s bagshare program has been around for four years, and in that time they have kept over 6,000 disposable plastic bags out of the environment. Come learn to sew and get creative making fun new bags for the bagshare program. Call to sign up. 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Saturday, April 11, 1:30pm – PUPPETRY: The Ware Family Center presents a performance of Sleeping Beauty by the Tanglewood Marionettes. Families will enjoy seeing this fairy tale acted out by beautifully-crafted marionettes. There will also be a craft activity (>$). 413-967-8127. 49 Church Street. Ware, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 4pm – CHILDREN’S BOOKS: The Odyssey Bookshop’s Middle Grade Mash Up is a super fun event for middle grade readers (ages 7-12) taking place on April 11. Come enjoy and learn about four new middle grade books about baseball, record-breaking, witches, and cooking. Check out the Odyssey Books website for more info on the books. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA.

Saturday, April 11, 5pm-8pm – ART WALK: Explore Easthampton’s local art scene at this month’s Art Walk. This is a fun evening out that lets you see work by talented local artists and experience some of the great art-related opportunities Easthampton has to offer! There will also be tons of great activities around town. More information can be found on the Art Walk Easthampton website. 413-527-8278. Downtown. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 5:30pm-8:30pm – NATURE STUDIES: April 11 is “The Big Night” at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary. Families can go on guided tours of the forest and meet costumed characters from vernal pools, such as spotted salamanders, wood frogs, and fairy shrimp. There will be short, funny skits to teach families about these interesting creatures. Pre-registration is required. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 6:30pm-8pm – BIRD STUDIES: Woodcocks return north to forest and farmland in the early spring, where males perform their mating displays at dusk. You can listen and watch for this distinctive and fascinating display at Guyette Farm with Franklin Land Trust on April 11 (originally scheduled for Apr 4). Catching sight of these interesting breeding displays can teach you a lot about woodcocks – how the males attract mates, what their ideal habitat is, which mating displays seem most effective, and how females react to the displays. This program allows people to have the opportunity to enter ideal woodcock habitat in search of these birds, while learning about their behavior and habitat from a Franklin Land Trust expert. Call or email jmorse@franklinlandtrust.org ASAP register. 413-625-9151. Guyette Farm. Plainfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, 7pm – THEATER: Black Cat Theater presents a performance of High School Musical at South Hadley High School. Come see this modern Disney musical performed live onstage. Call for ticket reservations. Active and retired military personnel will get free admission, and Boy/Girl Scouts in uniform can also attend for free with the donation of a non-perishable food item. Proceeds go toward a scholarship fund for local students going to college for the arts. 413-563-6023. 153 Newton Street. South Hadley, MA. ($$)

Saturday, April 11, 7pm – THEATER: The Gateway Regional High School Drama Club presents a performance of And Then There Were None this April at the Gateway Performing Arts Center. The play is based on the Agatha Christie novel of the same name. 413-685-1000. 12 Littleville Road. Huntington, MA. ($)

Saturday, April 11, 7pm – ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES/FILM: Project Native’s Environmental Film Festival kicks off on April 11 at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center with a screening of Just Eat It: A Food Waste Story (2014; not rated), a documentary about how much food goes to waste in America. Filmmakers Jen Rustemeyer and Grant Baldwin will be present to answer questions after the screening. Tickets can be reserved in advance. 413-528-0100. 14 Castle Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, April 11, DUSK – ASTRONOMY: Want to learn about astronomy first-hand? Join the Trustees of Reservations and the Arunah Hill Natural Science Center for an evening of stargazing and searching for moons, planets, galaxies, and more at Notchview! Please call to pre-register. 413-532-1631 x10. Route 9. Windsor, MA. (FREE)

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Sunday, April 12th, 2015

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, April 12, 10am-11:45am – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Young kids can get in the giving spirit with Lander-Grinspoon’s PJ Pals at their event, “Small Hands, Big Difference: Children and Tzedakah.” Kids ages 3-5 can come create mitzvah bags and deliver them to the Northampton Survival Center. There will also be songs, stories, a craft, and tumble time. Please bring a nonperishable food item to donate. 413-584-6622. 257 Prospect Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 10am-3pm – REUSE/RECYCLE: All-4-Kids Easthampton will be having their semi-annual sale this weekend at the Williston Northampton School’s Lossone Hockey Rink. The sale features a wide variety of quality used children’s clothes and shoes ranging from infant through young teens as well as games, toys, DVD’s, sports equipment, and maternity clothes. Half-price on April 12! 22 Greenwood Court. Easthampton, MA. (SALE)

Sunday, April 12, 10am-4pm – FIBER ARTS: The Hands All Around Quilt Show happens this weekend at the UMass Amherst Campus Center. Introduce your child to the wonderful world of homemade quilts! Many quilters will be on hand to discuss and explain their wonderful craft. Something for everyone – 300+ quilts, quilting demonstrations, kids activities, a modern quilt exhibit, a mini-quilt sale, and much more. UMass Amherst Campus Center. Amherst, MA.

Sunday, April 12, 10am-8pm – ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES/FILM: Project Native’s Environmental Film Festival continues on April 12 at the Triplex Cinema. Award-winning documentaries about a variety of current environmental issues will be screened all day at the theater, and older students and adults interested in these topics will enjoy learning about the issues and seeing these fascinating films. The first two films of the day are Deepo: A Fish Story and Watermelon Magic, which will be screened in 3D and are appropriate for children and families. A full list of films can be found on Project Native’s website, which is linked to above. Seating is limited. 413-274-3433. 70 Railroad Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 10:30am-12noon – STORYWALK/NATURE STUDIES: Families can attend a StoryWalk at the Leverett Public Library on April 12. Read Jane Yolen’s Owl Moon and learn about nature with Dawn Marvin Ward. Listen for bids, look for animal tracks and sign, and enjoy exploring the outdoors on a spring day. 978-544-5157. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 1pm-4pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Mass Audubon is offering a program for parents and educators on “Teaching Nature to Young Children.” Learn how you can help your children or students (ages 3-10) engage with the natural world and learn some great outdoor activities for doing so. Call to pre-register. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. ($)

Sunday, April 12, 1:30pm-4pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Jones Library and Multi-Arts are hosting a special afternoon at the library on April 12. Families can come work on collaborative projects together, including masks, sculptures, 3D art pieces, and more. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 2pm – FILM/FOOD STUDIES: The Berkshire Museum is screening A Place at the Table (2012; rated PG) on April 12. This documentary is about food insecurity in the United States and what can be done to solve the issue forever. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion. This film would best for older students who are interested in food availability and security in the US. Please bring a nonperishable food item to donate. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 2pm – THEATER: Black Cat Theater presents a performance of High School Musical at South Hadley High School. Come see this modern Disney musical performed live onstage. Call for ticket reservations. Active and retired military personnel will get free admission, and Boy/Girl Scouts in uniform can also attend for free with the donation of a non-perishable food item. Proceeds go toward a scholarship fund for local students going to college for the arts. 413-563-6023. 153 Newton Street. South Hadley, MA. ($$)

Sunday, April 12, 2pm-4pm – SOCIAL JUSTICE: Learn about how you can help stop human trafficking at Grow Food Amherst‘s Sustainability Sunday workshop. Baristas from Freedom Cafe of Amherst will teach about human trafficking, coffee, and how you can make a difference. Best for older students interested in social justice. This workshop takes place at All Things Local Cooperative Market. Registration is required. 413-259-3149. 104 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 3pm – MUSIC: The South Berkshire Concert Series presents Frederic Chiu performing a solo piano recital at McConnell Theater in the Daniel Arts Center on the Bard College at Simon’s Rock campus. Chiu will perform “Classical Smackdown: Claude Debussy vs. Sergei Prokofiev,” which allows audience members to voice their opinions on which composer would win if they faced off head-to-head. Students with audience skills who are interested in classical music will enjoy this unique performance. 413-644-4400. 84 Alford Road. Great Barrington, MA.

Sunday, April 12, 4pm – MUSIC STUDIES: The Smith College Music Department presents, “Concert Conversations,” a presentation about classical music. On April 12, Professor Peter Bloom will present “Schubert’s Death and the Maiden and Crumb’s Black Angels.” Takes place in Earle Recital Hall in Smith College’s Sage Hall. 413-585-3222. Green Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 4pm-6pm – CRAFTS: In conjunction with their “Weaving Up and Down” exhibition, the Deerfield Arts Bank will have a weaving demo on April 12. Janet Austin will present this hands-on demonstration, which would appeal to older students interested in learning how to weave. Call for more information. 413-665-0123. 3 Sugarloaf Street. South Deerfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, April 12, 7:30pm-9pm – BIRD STUDIES: All ages can come learn about the American Woodcock with Mass Audubon at Laughing Brook Wildlife Sanctuary. Come watch the fields and listen for the Woodcock and the male’s special mating dance at this program. Call to register. 413-584-3009. Main Street. Hampden, MA. ($)

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Monday, April 13th, 2015

Monday, April 13, 4:30pm – GOVERNMENT: Smith College presents a lecture by Professor Dennis Yasutomo. He will present, “Proactive Pacifism: The Rise of Japan, Part Trois?” Takes place in Seelye Hall 106 on the Smith College campus. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Monday, April 13, 6pm – STORYTIME: The Westfield Athenaeum is hosting a pajama storytime for kids ages 2-4. Kids should come dressed in pajamas and can even bring along a favorite stuffed animal. Please register in advance. 413-568-7833. 6 Elm Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Monday, April 13, 6pm – LOCAL HISTORY/CULTURAL STUDIES: The Wistariahurst Museum’s spring lecture series, “Immigrant Communities in the Pioneer Valley,” continues on April 13 with a talk by Jane Kaufman, who will present, “Our Stories: The Jews of Western Massachusetts.” This talk would be great for students who are interested in learning more about local immigrant communities, those who are descended from immigrants to the area, or those want to learn about the immigrant experience in the Pioneer Valley. 413-322-5660. 238 Cabot Street. Holyoke, MA. ($)

Monday, April 13, 7pm – FILM STUDIES/CULTURAL STUDIES: Williams College presents the South Asian Film Series: Highlights of Indian Cinema 1955-2013. Film fans can come see key films from the past six decades at this series. On April 13, see Pather Panchali, which tells the story of a poor family in Bengal. Older students will enjoy this film series, and can learn about both the history of film and Indian culture through the screenings. Takes place in Paresky Center Auditorium. 413-597-3131. 39 Chapin Hall Drive. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR MONDAYS (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center is open every Monday through Friday, 9am-12noon. Drop in for playgroups and activities for young children (ages 0-5) and caregivers. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 5 and under can attend a weekly playgroup every Monday at Buckland Shelburne Elementary School. Come play, read, learn, and have a snack. 413-625-6194. 75 Mechanic Street. Shelburne Falls, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and young children can attend a gym fun group at West Stockbridge Town Hall, held by South Berkshire Kids. This playgroup focuses on social and physical play and meets every Monday through July 2015. 413-464-5095. 21 State Line Road. West Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can come to the South Hadley Family Center every Monday-Thursday for playgroup, music, crafts, circle and more. The Center follows the South Hadley Schools’ calendar. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Children ages 8 and under can attend a playgroup at the Meekins Library the first and third Monday of each month. Enjoy stories, games, crafts, and more at this fun playgroup. 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – KNITTING: The Sunderland Public Library has a knitting group on Mondays. The group is open to knitters of all levels and ages. Great intergenerational activity to do with young homeschoolers. Runs most Mondays. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-10:45am – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Holyoke Public Library every Monday and Wednesday at 10am for stories with Nathan! 413-420-8105. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Join the Pittsfield CFCE for “Fun on the Farm” every Monday at Herman Melville’s Arrowhead. 413-499-4809. 780 Holmes Road. Pittsfield, MA.
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Join the Greenfield Public Library for a weekly storytime for all ages. Features interactive songs and stories. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group every Monday at the Williamstown Youth Center. 413-664-4821. School Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – ROCK CLIMBING: Central Rock Gym offers a Homeschool Climbing Group every Monday. Students can come to the gym and learn how to rock climb, learn how to belay, play games, do team-building activities, learn about climbing technique, and more. Call the gym to confirm. If it’s your first time, email karaocon@yahoo.com. Cost includes gear rental. 413-584-7625. 165 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. ($)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Come to Books and Babies at the East Longmeadow Public Library every Monday. Kids ages 2 and under can hear stories, see fingerplays, and have fun together. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA.
  • 10:30am – MUSIC: Infants, toddlers, and preschoolers can attend Music for Little Ones at the Pelham Library every Monday. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Forbes Library for a fun storytime every Monday. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Storrs Library offers a drop-in playgroup for kids ages 3 and under every Monday morning. Come hear a story, sing songs, and enjoy free play. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon – MOTHERS GROUP: The Nursing Mothers’ Council is hosting a monthly gathering on the second Monday of each month at the Amherst Family Center. Women and children can come to the meetings to meet one another, support each other, and discuss breastfeeding. 413-336-1616. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Smead Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-781-2599. 1780 Roosevelt Avenue. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 11am-12:30pm – PARENT GROUP: Mothers of infants and young children, as well as expectant moms, can come to the Hilltown Village Mothers’ Group every Monday at St. John’s Corner House. Come talk about motherhood and share your experiences in this supportive group environment. Childcare is available for kids up to age 4; infants in arms are welcome. The group follows the Mohawk Trail school schedule. 413-522-9732. 469 Main Street. Ashfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 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. (FREE)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Fitzpatrick Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-532-2929. 575 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)
  • 2pm-4pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Collins/Moylan Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-772-6891. 41 Barr Avenue. Greenfield, MA. (>$)
  • 3pm-5pm – CHESS: Kids ages 7 and up can stop by the Forest Park Branch Library every Monday to practice chess or learn to play. 413-263-6843. 380 Belmont Avenue. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:15pm-4:15pm – CHESS: Students in grades 2 and up can come to an afterschool chess club every Monday at the Storrs Library. All levels are welcome to come learn new strategies and have fun playing with peers. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – TEEN TIME: Teens can hang out at the Springfield Central Library‘s Teen Time, which gives teens a chance to talk about their interests with their peers and do activities. Every Monday. 413-263-6828 x471. 220 State Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-7pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: Come to the Holyoke Public Library every Monday evening for a drop-in craft activity! 413-420-8105. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – KNITTING: All skill levels can attend a knitting group at the Westhampton Public Library every Monday evening. Come learn and share tips and tricks with knitters of all ages and levels. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Gym Group for ages walking to 8yr every Monday at the Haskins Center. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-7pm – STORYTIME: Kids can unwind at the end of the day at the Montague Center Library‘s weekly evening storytime. Kids are welcome to come to the storytime in their pajamas. 413-367-2852. 17 Center Street. Montague, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-8pm – POETRY: The Good Purpose Gallery hosts an evening of spoken word poetry the first Monday of each month. Come hear poetry, spoken word, and storytelling, or sign up to share your work! 413-394-5045. 40 Main Street. Lee, MA. (SUGGESTED DONATION >$)

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Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

Tuesday, April 14, 9am-10:30am – STORYTIME: The Bement School will have a special story hour with crafts, snacks, and a performance. Come hear Coyote: A Trickster Tale from the American Southwest by Gerald McDermott and then see Bement’s kindergarten class perform the book! Takes place in the Bement library. Call to RSVP. 413-774-4209. 94 Old Main Street. Deerfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 12:30pm – MUSIC STUDIES: Take the opportunity to relax and enjoy live music at Smith College’s Music in the Noon Hour event. Smith faculty artists and friends will perform half-hour recitals of classical music. This week, Karen Smith-Emerson and Judith Gordon will perform vocals and piano. Takes place at Sweeney Concert Hall. 413-585-3222. 122 Green Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 1:30pm-2:30pm – MUSIC: Homeschool students who are interested in music can attend a drumming class with Otha Day in Pittsfield. No experience is necessary, and this is a great opportunity for students to learn from a skilled drummer. Email berksierra@aol.com for more information. Pittsfield, MA.

Tuesday, April 14, 3:30pm – SURVIVAL SKILLS: Learn some basic survival skills with naturalist Matt from Animal World Experience at the Westhampton Public Library. Ages 10 and up can learn about shelter construction, water purification, camouflage, building fires, and creating snares. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 3:30pm-4:30pm – BOOK CLUB: 6th, 7th, and 8th graders can attend a middle school book group at the West Springfield Public Library on April 14. Read this month’s book then come discuss it with peers and do a related craft. 413-736-4561. 511 Main Street. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 4:30pm-5:30pm – BOOK CLUB: 5th and 6th graders can attend the Stacks and Snacks Book Club at the Monson Free Library! Come discuss books at this fun book group. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 6pm – HISTORY: Join Storrowton Village for an interactive tour, Storrowton and the Civil War, that gives you a look into the past at what life was like for New Englanders during the Civil War. You can sit in on a recruitment meeting, speak with a blacksmith about the increase of manufacturing during the war, hear from women about sewing and making clothes, learn about how the war affected families, and what the impact on local industries was. This event is appropriate for older teens and adults only. Registration is required. 413-205-5051. 1305 Memorial Avenue. West Springfield, MA. ($)

Tuesday, April 14, 7pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Bay Path University is hosting a workshop for parents of high school juniors, titled “Helping Your Child Find the Right College,” on April 14. Susan Schatz, the founder of Schatz College Consulting, and Stephanie King and Dawn Bryden of Bay Path University will present this free workshop which focuses on identifying how your child learns best and what they are hoping to achieve from their college experience. Time will also be spent discussing financial aid and scholarships and how these factor into choosing a college. Pre-registration is recommended. Takes place in Breck Suite in Wright Hall on the Bay Path campus. 413-565-1066. 588 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, April 14, 7:30pm – CULINARY ARTS/FOOD HISTORY: Anne Willan will present, “The Cookbook Tree of Life: An Overview of the History of Cookbooks Through Four Centuries and Half a Dozen Languages,” at Williams College’s Griffin Hall, room 7 on April 14. Willian has experience as a teacher, cookbook author, culinary historian, and food columnist, and her talk would appeal to older students interested in food studies, culinary arts, books, and food history. 413-597-4277. 844 Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR TUESDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 8:45am-10:15am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children will hold a playgroup at the Swift River School every Tuesday. 978-544-5157. 201 Wendell Road. New Salem, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open Tuesday-Friday from 9am-12noon for drop-in activities for infants, preschoolers, and their caregivers. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center is open every Monday through Friday, 9am-12noon. Drop in for playgroups and activities for young children (ages 0-5) and caregivers. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12midnight – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum is open late – until 12midnight – every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday during the College’s academic year. Avoid the crowds and check out the museum’s exhibitions, gift shop, and cafe during these special late hours. 413-542-2335. 41 Quadrangle Drive. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Join the Pittsfield CFCE every Tuesday for a playgroup at Egremont Elementary School. 413-499-4809. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for young kids ages birth-preK at the Dickinson Memorial Library with Deb Wood features fun toys and more! Every Tuesday. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can come to the South Hadley Family Center every Monday-Thursday for playgroup, music, crafts, circle and more. The Center follows the South Hadley Schools’ calendar. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Come to the Goodwin Memorial Library every Tuesday for storytime! Runs all year. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 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. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group every Tuesday at the Haskins Center. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Westhampton Public Library will have a playgroup for toddlers and preschoolers every Tuesday. Kids can come play with toys, do a craft, read a book, and make new friends at this fun playgroup. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – LITERACY: Kids ages 2-5 can attend a literacy group at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Westfield. Come with a parent or caregiver and practice reading skills! Runs every Tuesday. 413-568-5242. 28 West Silver Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and young children can attend a weekly playgroup every Tuesday through June 2015 at Otis Town Hall, held by South Berkshire Kids. 413-464-5095. 1 North Main Road. Otis, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Music and movement storytime at the Forest Park Branch Library for ages 1-3 and their parents/caregivers. Come for rhymes, songs, and stories. Runs every Tuesday from February 3-April 28. Call to pre-register. 413-263-6843. 380 Belmont Avenue. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Preschoolers can attend a fun storytime at the Chicopee Public Library the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. Come for songs, finger plays, movement, stories, activities, and crafts. 413-594-1800 x107. 449 Front Street. Chicopee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11am – MUSIC: The Hubbard Library is offering a music program for preschoolers every Tuesday. Come for singing, clapping, and dancing. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: South Berkshire Kids is offering a Brain Builder Play and Learn Group at the Mason Library every Tuesday. Kids ages birth to age 5 can come read, sing, play, and talk, with a focus on STEM concepts and early literacy. 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-2:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Fitzpatrick Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-532-2929. 575 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)
  • 10:45am-12:45pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Smead Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-781-2599. 1780 Roosevelt Avenue. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 11am-11:30am – STORYTIME: The Lenox Library is offering a storytime for toddlers ages 18 months to 3 years every Tuesday. This storytime follows the school district schedule. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Westhampton Public Library is holding a baby and toddler playtime every Tuesday. Come to the library and meet other kids and parents. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, 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-4pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Collins/Moylan Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-772-6891. 41 Barr Avenue. Greenfield, MA. (>$)
  • 3pm-4:30pm – VIDEO GAMES: Teens and tweens can drop into the Brightwood Library‘s video games event. Come play Wii games with friends and enjoy snacks. 413-263-6805. 359 Plainfield Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: The Family Resource Center is offering a LEGO group for ages 4-8 the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. 413-664-4821. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-5:30pm – LIBRARY GROUP: Teens can come to the Lilly Library‘s Teen Scene every Tuesday for games, projects, crafts, movies, and more. Stop by for fun activities and friends! 413-587-1500. 19 Meadow Street. Florence, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – LEGO: Kids ages 7-12 can have fun and get creative with LEGOs at the Indian Orchard Branch Library every Tuesday. Call to sign up. 413-263-6846. 44 Oak Street. Indian Orchard, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm – KARATE: Free shotokan karate classes are offered every Tuesday and Thursday at Northfield Elementary School for all ages. More info available here. 802-451-0303. 104 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group every Tuesday evening at the Greylock Apartments’ Community Room for children walking age to age 5. 413-664-4821. Angeli Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: It’s Pajama Storytime at the Monson Free Library! Wear your pajamas and enjoy stories and fun. Happens the 2nd Tuesday of each month. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Holyoke Public Library every Tuesday evening for storytime with Jason. This program includes stories, songs, fingerplays, and more. 413-420-8105. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

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Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

Wednesday, April 15, 9am-12noon – SWAP: Berkshire homeschoolers are having a curriculum swap at the First Baptist Church of Cheshire on April 15. Donate educational materials you no longer need and find pre-owned curriculum materials for next year. Swap for books, unused workbooks, teacher’s manuals, educational games, DVDs, and more. 32 North Street. Cheshire, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 9-10:30am – OPEN HOUSE: Amherst Montessori School has openings for children ages 15 months through 5 years for Fall 2015. Come to their open house to learn about their programs. 413-253-3101. 27 Pomeroy Lane. Amherst, MA (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 10am – CHILDREN’S PERFORMANCE: The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center presents a performance of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Other Eric Carle Favorites, by Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia. Kids in preschool through grade 3 will enjoy this performance, which brings Carle’s classic stories to life. Call for more information on this and other school-time field trip performances at Mahaiwe. 413-644-9040 x105. 14 Castle Street. Great Barrington, MA. (>$)

Wednesday, April 15, 11:30am-12:15pm – MUSIC/MOVEMENT: Families can attend a Music and Movement class at the Belchertown Family Center this April and May. Come for music, movement, and fun! Drop-in. 413-835-5201. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 4:30pm-5:30pm – LITERACY: Students in grades K-3 can improve their reading skills at the Monson Free Library. Come read to Ben the Dog, who will listen attentively as kids read aloud. Call to register. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 6:30pm-8pm – GARDENING/WELLNESS: Learn how to grow your own medicinal plants at a workshop by Jade Alicandro Mace of Milk and Honey Herbs at River Valley Market on April 15. “Growing the Home Medicine Garden” will teach about useful plants and their medicinal uses. Those who attend will sow their own seeds to take home. Pre-registration is required. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 6:30pm-8pm – POETRY: The Meekins Library will have an open mic event to celebrate National Poetry Month. All are welcome to come share their poems and listen to others read theirs aloud. This is a great event for students of all ages who are interested in poetry. 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, April 15, 7pm-8pm – ANIMAL STUDIES: Join the Great Falls Discovery Center for a program on shortnose sturgeon with Dr. Boyd Kynard. Learn about these special fish, which were around during the time of the dinosaurs, and the history of their presence in the Connecticut River at this fascinating talk. Best for older students interested in animals and hydrology. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR WEDNESDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Collaborative for Educational Services is offering a parent-child playgroup every Wednesday at the First Congregational Church of Hatfield. Come play and learn together at this fun playgroup! 413-586-4998. 41 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open Tuesday-Friday from 9am-12noon for drop-in activities for infants, preschoolers, and their caregivers. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center is open every Monday through Friday, 9am-12noon. Drop in for playgroups and activities for young children (ages 0-5) and caregivers. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-4:30pm – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: Get outside this winter at Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center! The trails are open most Wednesdays through Sundays during the winter months for snowshoeing and cross country skiing. 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA.
  • 9am-12midnight – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum is open late – until 12midnight – every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday during the College’s academic year. Avoid the crowds and check out the museum’s exhibitions, gift shop, and cafe during these special late hours. 413-542-2335. 41 Quadrangle Drive. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can come to the South Hadley Family Center every Monday-Thursday for playgroup, music, crafts, circle and more. The Center follows the South Hadley Schools’ calendar. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: There will be playgroup at the Cummington Family Center every Wednesday and Friday through May. The playgroups are parent-run, which means that the first parent to arrive can set up toys and make coffee/tea. 33 Main Street. Cummington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Parents and their preschoolers can come to the Westhampton Public Library for coffee and storytime every Wednesday. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Westhampton Public Library on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA.
  • 10am-10:45am – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Holyoke Public Library every Monday and Wednesday at 10am for stories with Nathan! 413-420-8105. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group for toddlers at the Haskins Center. For ages 1-2.5. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: South Berkshire Kids is offering a playgroup every Wednesday at the Lenox Community Center. Come for play, crafts, activities, stories, and more. 413-464-5095. 65 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children will hold a playgroup at the Wendell Library every Wednesday. 978-544-5157. 7 Wendell Depot Road. Wendell, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children will hold a playgroup at the Erving Public Library every Wednesday. 978-544-5157. 17 Moore Street. Erving, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:15am – STORYTIME: The Wilbraham Public Library holds a weekly storytime for ages 2-3 ½ every Wednesday OR Thursday. There will be fun stories and crafts. 413-596-6141. 25 Crane Park Drive. Wilbraham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Meekins Library librarian, Rochelle Wildfong, will host a story time in the children’s department every Wednesday, all year round. Fingerplays, songs, picture books, and circle games for pre-schoolers and their caregivers. After story hour, take the kids sledding behind the school, then head down to Bread Euphoria for a warm something to eat & drink! A delightful way to spend a Wednesday morning in the Hilltowns with your preK kids! 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA (FREE)
  • 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.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for ages 3-8 at the Mason Square Branch Library. Come every Wednesday for stories, songs, and crafts. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, 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. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11am – STEM: The Berkshire Museum is offering a Parent/Child STEM Session the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Come explore science, technology, engineering, and math through books, hands-on activities, and play. Registration is required. 413-443-7171 x21. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: The Community Network for Children offers a story hour every Wednesday at the Leverett Library. Children ages 5 and under can come for music, movement, books, and hands-on activities. 978-544-5157. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Smead Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-781-2599. 1780 Roosevelt Avenue. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 11am-12noon – STORYTIME: Preschool storyhour every Wednesday at the Dickinson Memorial Library with Ruthanne Paulson includes stories, music, movement, crafts, and a snack. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 12noon-1:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Every Wednesday there will be a support group for pregnant and postpartum mothers of children ages 0-5 at Square One’s Family Square, facilitated by MotherWoman. This group is a great place to talk about motherhood in a safe and confidential space. Childcare provided. 413-858-3122. 1095 Main Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 12noon-2pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Collins/Moylan Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-772-6891. 41 Barr Avenue. Greenfield, MA. (>$)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Fitzpatrick Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-532-2929. 575 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)
  • 1pm-2:30pm – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Wednesday at Midwifery Care of Holyoke. Expectant mothers and moms of babies under age 1 can come discuss all aspects of motherhood. 413-534-2700. 230 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-2:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Parents, caregivers, and grandparents are invited to attend a Parents Supporting Parents Support Group every Wednesday at the Salasin Center. 413-775-0010. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:15pm – STEM: Homeschool students of all ages can learn about science at the Carnegie Public Library every Wednesday. Kids will enjoy learning about science at this hands-on program. Runs through May 13. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.
  • 1:30pm – NATURE STUDIES: Preschool-aged kids can attend Kidleidoscope every Wednesday at Natural Bridge State Park. This weekly program features forest-themed educational activities. 413-663-6392. McCauley Road. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-4pm – MANGA/COMICS: Teens who love anime, manga, and comics can come to the Forest Park Branch Library for discussions, activities, games, and more. Repeats the third Wednesday of each month. 413-263-6843. 380 Belmont Avenue. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5:30pm – MAKER SPACE: Every Wednesday, Amherst Media hosts a drop-in group for makers of all ages and experience levels. Whether you’re working on computer programming, tech projects, knitting, other projects, or are just curious, stop by and check it out! 413-259-3300. 246 College Street. Amherst, MA.
  • 4pm – STORYTIME: All ages can enjoy stories and a craft at the Cushman Library‘s weekly story hour. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, 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. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-7:30pm – KNITTING: The Cushman Library‘s knitting group runs every Wednesday night. Come hang out with knitters of all ages and share knitting advice. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm – KNITTING: Come to the Goodwin Memorial Library every Wednesday evening for knitting group. All levels are welcome, making this is a great chance to share knitting tips and tricks with other knitters of all ages. Runs all year. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7:30pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: Teens ages 12-18 can come to the Goodwin Memorial Library every other “odd” Wednesday for craft night. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7:30pm – GAMES: Teens ages 12-18 can come to the Goodwin Memorial Library every other “even” Wednesday for game night. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: Pajama storytime for kids ages 3-6 at the East Longmeadow Library. Runs every Wednesday evening. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm-9pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group the fourth Wednesday of each month in Conference Room D at Cooley Dickinson Hospital. This is a bereavement group for infant and pregnancy loss. Please contact emptyarmsbereavement@gmail.com for more information. 413-387-0703. 30 Locust Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 7pm-9pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group the second Wednesday of each month in the Owl and Raven Community Space. The group is for mothers and partners who have experience the loss of a baby through miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. Please email lexi.walters@gmail.com for more information. 413-387-0703. 2 Conz Street, Unit 42. Northampton, 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 teens and adults. Every Wednesday except the second Wednesday of each month. 99 Main Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Thursday, April 16th, 2015

Thursday, April 16, 12:15pm – LOCAL HISTORY: This week’s Museums a la Carte lecture at the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts is, “Winslow Homer as a Maker of Modern Art in the Later 1870s,” with Marc Simpson. He will discuss Homer’s paintings of women, which were modern in theme and style and differed greatly from his other works. Best for older students. 800-625-7738. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (>$)

Thursday, April 16, 3:30pm – BOOK CLUB: Kids in grades 2 and 3 are invited to the West Springfield Public Library for Ready Readers book club! Read this month’s book then come to the library to do a related craft and discuss the book with your peers. 413-736-4561. 511 Main Street. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, April 16, 3:30pm-5:30pm – EDUCATOR WORKSHOP: Chemistry instructors can attend “A Natural Approach to Chemistry” with Dr. Deborah Carlisle at Amherst Regional High School on April 16. This workshop focuses on making chemistry more accessible, relevant, and engaging for all students. Register here. 21 Matoon Street. Amherst, MA.

Thursday, April 16, 4pm-5pm – STEM: Kids ages 6 and older are invited to come to the Greenfield Public Library for this month’s session of “Fun with Science,” an activity using science in a craft or experiment, with educator Corissa Tripp. This free program is made possible by the Friends of the Greenfield Public Library. This community-based STEM program happens on the third Thursday of each month through June 2015. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, April 16, 4:30pm-10pm – COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: April 16 is Third Thursday in Turners Falls! This month’s theme is “A Night of Conversation About the Arts,” and there will be arts activities, live music, art shows, and more all around Turners Falls. ArtSalon also takes place on the 16th, and artists and designers of all mediums will present their work in the Pecha Kucha format (20 slides, 20 seconds per slide). Art-lovers will have a blast at this community event. 413-230-9910. Turners Falls, MA.

Thursday, April 16, 6pm-8pm – MUSIC/AUCTION: New Hingham Regional Elementary School’s Art and Music Night is on April 16. Students will play music, and guests can bid on student art pieces to raise money for the school. 30 Smith Road. Chesterfield, MA. (AUCTION/FUNDRAISER)

Thursday, April 16, 7pm-8pm – BIRD STUDIES: Join the Great Falls Discovery Center for a program on swallows with Mara Silver. Learn about barn and cliff swallows and why their populations are declining in Massachusetts. Older students interested in birds will enjoy this presentation. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, April 16, 7:30pm – THEATER: The Williston Northampton School presents a performance of As You Like It this April. Theater fans will like seeing this Shakespeare comedy live. Tickets available in advance. 413-529-3000. 19 Payson Avenue. Easthampton, MA. ($)

ONGOING FOR THURSDAYS (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open Tuesday-Friday from 9am-12noon for drop-in activities for infants, preschoolers, and their caregivers. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center is open every Monday through Friday, 9am-12noon. Drop in for playgroups and activities for young children (ages 0-5) and caregivers. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-4:30pm – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: Get outside this winter at Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center! The trails are open most Wednesdays through Sundays during the winter months for snowshoeing and cross country skiing. 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA.
  • 9am-12midnight – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Amherst College’s Mead Art Museum is open late – until 12midnight – every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday during the College’s academic year. Avoid the crowds and check out the museum’s exhibitions, gift shop, and cafe during these special late hours. 413-542-2335. 41 Quadrangle Drive. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: South Berkshire Kids is offering a weekly playgroup at the Richmond Consolidated School. 413-464-5095. 1831 State Road. Richmond, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and kids ages 18 months to 3 years can attend a Toddler Steps program at the CHP Family Services Building, held by South Berkshire Kids. The program features circle time, stories, songs, crafts, and play, and runs every Thursday through June 2015. 413-464-5095. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can come to the South Hadley Family Center every Monday-Thursday for playgroup, music, crafts, circle and more. The Center follows the South Hadley Schools’ calendar. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – MUSIC: The Goodwin Memorial Library will have a Lunatunes program every Thursday for babies and toddlers. Young kids and their parents/caregivers can come to the library for music, songs, and fingerplays. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Gateway Family Center is offering a drop-in “Baby Steps” program for infants 0-1 years, as well as their siblings and caregivers. Runs every Thursday. 413-667-2203 x3. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Join the Pittsfield CFCE at the Berkshire Athenaeum for a weekly Play and Learn group. 413-499-4809. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:15am – STORYTIME: The Wilbraham Public Library holds a weekly storytime for ages 2-3 ½ every Wednesday OR Thursday. There will be fun stories and crafts. 413-596-6141. 25 Crane Park Drive. Wilbraham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:15am – STORYTIME: Storytime for toddlers (ages 2-5) every Thursday at the Ramsdell Library. 413-274-3738. 1087 Main Street. Housatonic, 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. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MUSIC: The Jones Library will offer a preschool storytime every Thursday. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, 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. (FREE)
  • 10:45am-12:45pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Smead Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-781-2599. 1780 Roosevelt Avenue. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 11am-11:45am – STORYTIME/ARTS & CRAFTS: The Lenox Library is offering Story Craft for kids ages 3-5, with stories and crafts. This program follows the school district schedule. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:15am – STORYTIME: The Wilbraham Public Library holds a weekly storytime for ages 3 ½-5 every Thursday. There will be fun stories and crafts. 413-596-6141. 25 Crane Park Drive. Wilbraham, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Gym Group for ages walking to 5 every Thursday at the Haskins Center. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Fitzpatrick Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-532-2929. 575 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every third Thursday at Scantic Valley YMCA. Mothers of babies 12 months and under can come talk about motherhood at this monthly program. 413-583-3527. 45 Post Office Park. Wilbraham, MA. (FREE)
  • 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. (FREE)
  • 1:30pm-2:30pm – STORYTIME/BILINGUAL: Little ones can come to the Brightwood Library every Thursday for a bilingual story club (English and Spanish). Come sing, dance, play, hear stories in English and Spanish, and meet new friends. 413-263-6805. 359 Plainfield Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 2pm-4pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Collins/Moylan Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-772-6891. 41 Barr Avenue. Greenfield, MA. (>$)
  • 2:30pm-4:30pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Hatfield Public Library holds a weekly Crafting Club for ages 5 and up every Thursday! Come to the library and get creative at this fun program. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-4:45pm – MINECRAFT: Tweens and teens can attend Minecraft Club at the Indian Orchard Branch Library every Thursday. Come make new friends and trade Minecraft tips and tricks! 413-263-6846. 44 Oak Street. Indian Orchard, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-5pm – CHESS: Every second and fourth Thursday, kids are invited to the Mason Library for chess. There will be 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. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – STORYTIME: The Hubbard Library is offering a storytime for students ages 5-8. Every Thursday. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-8pm – GAMES/LEGOS: Families can have fun every Thursday at Gaylord 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. (FREE)
  • 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)
  • 5pm-6:30pm – LEGO: Kids ages 6 and up can have fun and get creative with LEGOs at the Mason Square Branch Library‘s LEGO Club every Thursday. Call to sign up. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm – SKILLSHARE/CRAFT GROUP: The Haberdashery holds a Chat ‘n Do every Thursday at 5:30pm. Bring a project you are working on and chat with others, hash out ideas, ask advice, offer tips, and more. This is a good opportunity for intergenerational skill sharing! 413-527-1638. 52 Union Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm – KARATE: Free shotokan karate classes are offered every Tuesday and Thursday at Northfield Elementary School for all ages. More info available here. 802-451-0303. 104 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-8pm – KNITTING: Spruce up your knitting skills and spend time with community members of all ages at the Dickinson Memorial Library‘s knitting group every Thursday evening. All skill levels are welcome. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm-7:30pm – STORYTIME: The Hubbard Library will have a “Tuck Me In” storytime for ages 3-7 the first Thursday of each month. Kids can come to the library in pajamas and enjoy this bedtime-themed storytime. Registration is required. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, April 17th, 2015

Friday, April 17, 8am-10am – BIRD STUDIES: Learn about birds and search the skies for different migrant species with Mass Audubon at Canoe Meadows. Come every week to see how the species change as spring progresses! 413-637-0320. Holmes Road. Pittsfield, MA. (>$)

Friday, April 17, 10am – THEATER: Homeschool students can attend a performance of Hamlet at Shakespeare and Company on April 17. This is a great chance to see Shakespeare’s famous tragedy at an affordable price. Call for more information and tickets. 413-637-1199 x131. 70 Kemble Street. Lenox, MA. ($)

Friday, April 17, 5:15pm-5:45pm – SHABBAT: Beit Ahavah is hosting a “Tot Shabbat” event for ages 0-6. Families can come for this fun, musical event and enjoy a potluck Shabbat dinner. 413-587-3770. 130 Pine Street. Florence, MA.

Friday, April 17, 7pm – THEATER: The Williston Northampton School presents a performance of As You Like It this April. Theater fans will like seeing this Shakespeare comedy live. Tickets available in advance. 413-529-3000. 19 Payson Avenue. Easthampton, MA. ($)

Friday, April 17, 7pm – STEM: The UMass Amherst Chemistry Department presents the “Have a Blast” Chemical Demonstration Show on April 17. Students of all ages will enjoy this amazing demonstration, which features tons of cool chemical reactions and hands-on chemistry activities. Takes place in Room 135 of the Integrated Sciences Building on the UMass campus. Email rkittilstved@chem.umass.edu to RSVP. 661 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR FRIDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)
9:30am-3:30pm – GIRLS’ EMPOWERMENT: Full Moon Girls, nature mentoring takes place on Fridays, Feb 6-May 29, for girls ages 9-15. A spot is open for you! 413-367-6191. Brook’s Bend Farm. Montague, MA (Sliding scale $50-78/day)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center is open every Monday through Friday, 9am-12noon. Drop in for playgroups and activities for young children (ages 0-5) and caregivers. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-4:30pm – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: Get outside this winter at Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center! The trails are open most Wednesdays through Sundays during the winter months for snowshoeing and cross country skiing. 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA.
  • 9:30am – WRITING: The Edwards Public Library‘s Writing Group meets every Friday. Older students with a passion for writing of any style can attend this supportive intergenerational group. 413-527-9480. 30 East Street. Southampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: There will be playgroup at the Cummington Family Center every Wednesday and Friday through May. The playgroups are parent-run, which means that the first parent to arrive can set up toys and make coffee/tea. 33 Main Street. Cummington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents’ Center is holding a weekly playgroup in Hadley every Friday at Whole Children. 413-582-2636. 41 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:45am-11:15am – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Friday at the UMass Amherst Family Center. Expectant mothers and moms of infants through preschoolers can attend this group to discuss all aspects of motherhood. Childcare provided for ages 4 and under. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – 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. 400 Main Road. Chesterfield, MA.
  • 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. 2 Depot Street. Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group every Friday at Lanesborough Town Hall. 413-664-4821. 83 North Main Street. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am & 2pm – GEOLOGY: Learn about the fascinating geology of Natural Bridge State Park at their Marvelous Marble Tour every Friday at 10am & 2pm. Join a park interpreter for an easy walk around the park exploring its geologic history and the remains of the 19th- and 20th-century marble quarry that once operated on the grounds. All ages will enjoy exploring the park and learning some interesting local geology. 413-663-6392. McCauley Road. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: The Hubbard Library is offering a storytime for young children to help them learn the letters of the alphabet using stories, flash cards, and fun activities. Please register for each week individually. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a free baby group for babies and caretakers at the Williamstown Youth Center the first Friday of every month. 413-663-6593. School Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: The Family Resource Center is offering a Play and Learn Group for ages walking to 5 every Friday at the Adams Youth Center. 413-664-4821. East Street. Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Friday at the Community Action Family Center. Expectant mothers and moms of infants can attend this group to discuss adjustment to motherhood. Childcare provided; babies in arms welcome. 413-387-0703. 220 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Friday at the MotherWoman Office. Expectant mothers and moms of infants through preschoolers can attend this group to discuss all aspects of motherhood. Childcare provided for ages 4 and under. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – COMPUTER TECH: Learn about computers and get help with basic programs at the Carnegie Library on Fridays. Call the library to sign up for a 30-minute time slot. 413-863-3214. 1 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and young children can attend Skip and Dip at the Berkshire South Regional Community Center, held by South Berkshire Kids. This group consists of splash pool and gym time and runs every Friday through June 2015. 413-464-5095. 15 Crissey Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Every Friday is Bounce and Rhyme Storytime at the Monson Free Library! Kids 2 ½ and younger can come enjoy stories, songs, and rhymes. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MOVEMENT: The Chicopee Public Library holds a weekly Music and Movement program for kids ages 5 and under every Friday. Come have fun moving, singing, and dancing. 413-594-1800. 449 Front Street. Chicopee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and young children can attend an art and nature playgroup at the CHP Campus, held by South Berkshire Kids. Runs every Friday through June 2015. 413-464-5095. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Young kids can attend a weekly storyhour at the Pelham Library every Friday. Come enjoy stories and crafts. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Smead Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-781-2599. 1780 Roosevelt Avenue. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 10:30am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Kids in kindergarten and younger can attend a free playgroup every Friday through May 2015 at the Granby Free Public Library. 413-467-3320. 297 East State Street. Granby, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Preschoolers can attend storytime every Friday at Griswold Memorial Library. Come for stories, crafts, and a snack. 413-624-3619. 12 Main Road. Colrain, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-11:45am – STORYTIME: Join the Greenfield Public Library for “Mother Goose on the Loose,” a program for ages 3 and under that features hands-on fun with songs, rhymes, and activities. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-1:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Parents/caregivers and their babies, ages 0-15 months, can come to “Welcome Baby” every Friday at the Storrs Library. This program, run by Pathways for Parents, is all about the importance of reading, music, and interactive play. Call to sign up. 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 12noon-1pm – CLOTH DIAPERS: Simple Diaper and Linen is offering a Cloth Diaper 101 workshop at Life Works Studio. Come learn the ins and outs of cloth diapering and get information on Simple Diaper and Linen’s new diaper service in Southern Berkshire County. 413-749-6232. 50 Castle Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Families can attend the “Family Frolic Storytime” every Friday at Gaylord Memorial Library! Enjoy stories, musical plays, and crafts. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Kids ages 3-6 can come to the Sunderland Public Library for stories, songs, finger plays, and crafts every Friday morning. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 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. ($)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Fitzpatrick Skating Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-532-2929. 575 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)
  • 1:30pm-5:30pm – FARMERS’ MARKET: The Easthampton Winter Farmers’ Market will be in the Eastworks Building every Friday all winter. Come by for local veggies, meat, apples, yarn, baked goods, syrup, skin care products, and more. 116 Pleasant Street. Easthampton, MA. (MARKET)
  • 2pm-4pm – ICE SKATING: Public skate at the Collins/Moylan Arena. Come improve your ice skating skills! Rentals available – first come, first served. 413-772-6891. 41 Barr Avenue. Greenfield, MA. (>$)
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – MINECRAFT: The Storrs Library has a Minecraft Club for kids in grades 3 and up every Friday. Call to sign up. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – BOOK GROUP: 2nd and 3rd graders who love reading can attend the Hatfield Public Library‘s Kid Book Club every Friday. Kids can hang out together, recommend books to one another, do book-related activities, and enjoy a pizza dinner. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – BOOK GROUP: Tweens in grades 4-6 can attend the Hatfield Public Library‘s B-Tween the Lines Book Club every Friday. Kids can hang out together, recommend books to one another, do book-related activities, write reviews, interview authors, and enjoy a pizza dinner. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-9pm – MUSIC/ARTS & CRAFTS: ArtALIVE will host Concerts, Crafts, and Conversation every Friday night. Local musicians will perform and there will be open crafts. 413-222-5366. 35 South Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. ($)
  • 7:30pm – ASTRONOMY: The Springfield Science Museum and the Stars Club host a public observing program in the Tolman Auditorium at the Museum on the first Friday of each month (not held Jun-Aug.). See a slide show, view the night sky in their large rooftop observatory, ask questions, and learn about the night sky. 800-625-7738. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (>$)
  • 8pm – ASTRONOMY: The Milham Planetarium at Williams College will be open to the public for a planetarium show every Friday through May 1 (except 3/20, 3/27, and 4/3). 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 Amherst, Ashfield, Bernardston, Chesterfield, Conway, Erving, Goshen, Heath, Holyoke, Leyden, Pelham, Shutesbury, South Hadley, Warwick, Williamsburg and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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