Hilltown Families Pop-Up Open House

Stop by our first ever Pop-Up Open House taking place during the Amherst Sustainability Festival this Saturday, April 16 from 10am-4pm.  Come meet some of our board members, staff and volunteers and learn about the work of Hilltown Families and how you can get involvedLook for our tent on the Amherst Town Common while perusing all of the family fun activities this annual sustainability festival has to offer.

Hilltown Families believes in creating resilient and sustainable communities by developing and strengthening a sense of place in our children and citizens through community based education and engagement.  We work to accomplish this by highlighting the embedded learning that is found everywhere in our communities, making the information accessible to families, and giving parents/educators access to opportunities that supports their children’s interests and education while encouraging community engagement. We do this by connecting, collaborating, and creating community building events, community based educational opportunities, and community service learning experiences.

Now a decade old, Hilltown Families is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, serving thousands of families living throughout western Massachusetts. Through an online grassroots communication network, Hilltown Families connects people and organizations in the widespread communities of western Massachusetts by helping area residents share ideas, organize activities, support their children’s education and increase participation in community life.

See this TEDx Talk, Supporting Education Through Community Engagement, where Hilltown Families founder, Sienna Wildfield, shares the story behind the vision and mission of Hilltown Families. 


About the Amherst Sustainability Festival

The festival is a family friendly event with over 100 vendors of renewable energy, energy efficiency product suppliers, advocacy groups as well as sustainable crafts and artisans and is being held on Saturday, April 16th from 10am– 4pm on the Amherst Town Common.

This year’s schedule of events as follows:

Stage Performers

  • 10 AM – Piti Theatre Company – “Innocenzo” 11 AM – Valley Women Drummers
  • 12 PM – Incus
  • 1 PM – Carrie Ferguson
  • 2 PM – Chris Scanlon
  • 3 PM – The Connotations

Central Demonstration Areas

  • 10 AM – “Beekeeping: Getting Started” – Henry Wilhelm
  • 11 AM – “Constructing Your Own Solar Oven” – Scully Wilhelm
  • 12 PM – “Growing, Sprouting and Saving Bean Seeds” – David Lovler
  • 1 PM – “Making Natural Deodorant & Biochar Facemasks” – Erica Clark-Tramantozzi & Mariana Lachiusa
  • 2 PM – “Gardening with Mushrooms” – Willie of Fungi Ally
  • 3 PM –“Vermi-composting” – Brandon Curtin

The UMASS Stockbridge School of Agricultural Leadership and Community Education program will feature three “Skills to Build a Sustainable Future” workshops.

  • 12 PM  – “Gluten & Dairy-Free Living” with Ayana LaSalle (conducted at the booth)
  • 1 PM – “Biochar Face-mask Workshop” with Mariana Lachiusa (demo area)
  • 1:30 PM – “Natural Deodorant Making” with Erica Clark-Tramontozzi (demo area)

Live animals will be on display throughout the day at the Goat Girls and 4-H booth locations. In addition, Cyndee Boehmer will provide free face painting at her booth space from noon – 3 PM. HENRY the JUGGLER will demonstrate his skills as a juggler and stilt walker by performing around the Common between 11 AM-1PM.

Back again this year is the Recycling Drive sponsored by the Amherst Recycling and Refuse Management Committee. Bring pellet bags, large Styrofoam chunks & unwanted clean/dry clothing, linens and rags for recycling. The collection truck and bin will be located on Boltwood Avenue across from the Lord Jeff Inn.

For more information go to the festival website: www.amherstma.gov/sustainabilityfestival.

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