Suggested Events for January 14th – 20th, 2017

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

Join us for our 9th Annual Handmade Valentine Swap! Here’s what one of our participants had to say last year about the swap: “I participated in this swap last year for the first time. I LOVED making the Valentine’s for my list of folks. I am not usually very excited about the mail but this event made me excited for the mail to come. This is such an uplifting way to celebrate a day that can be lonely sometimes. Thank you for this activity. Count me in again!” – Carla D. (Chicopee)

Join us for our 9th Annual Handmade Valentine Swap! Here’s what one of our participants had to say last year about the swap: “I participated in this swap last year for the first time. I LOVED making the Valentine’s for my list of folks. I am not usually very excited about the mail but this event made me excited for the mail to come. This is such an uplifting way to celebrate a day that can be lonely sometimes. Thank you for this activity. Count me in again!” – Carla D. (Chicopee)

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! Click HERE to find out more.

Hilltown Families 9th Annual
Handmade Valentine Swap

It’s that time of the year again for the Hilltown Families Annual Handmade Valentine Swap! For the past nine years Hilltown Families has coordinated a community Handmade Valentine Swap — and we’re doing it again! Making handmade valentines is a great way to push against the commercialization of yet another holiday, while being creative with your family and friends. JOIN US! It’s free to sign up and open to all families in western Massachusetts! Last year our community generated over 1,550 handmade valentines! Let’s do it again!

Bulletin Board

Jan 13

Montessori Comes to Forbes Library: On Friday, January 13, at 11am, bring your child to a visit with Montessori School of Northampton educator Laura Frogameni. The hour will include time to explore Montessori materials, circle time and a story. The Forbes Library is located at 20 West Street in Northampton. Free; all families of children 0-6 are invited to attend. For more information, call Laura at 413-586-4538 x103 or visit

Jan & Feb

Start the weekend off right with Amherst Cinema’s $5 Family Films Series on Saturday mornings in January and February! The diverse lineup—including animated, live action, documentary, musical, and foreign films—is sure to delight kids big and small. Travel to Neverland with Hook, visit an enchanted forest in The Secret of Kells, escape vicious farmers with Fantastic Mr. Fox, and make new friends with My Neighbor Totoro. Go on an adventure with Buttercup and Westly in The Princess Bride, laugh along with Buster Keaton in The General, and meet classic cartoon characters in The Looney Tunes Revue. Take flight with Winged Migration and sing from the mountaintops with The Sound of Music. For more information, visit

Open House: Jan 21

Open House! Nonotuck Community School. Jan. 21, Sat. 10am-12:30pm. Come learn about Nonotuck’s early childhood program for children 15 months-5 years. Tours for grown-ups and activities for children. Applications are being accepted for summer/September. Nonotuck has well-appointed classrooms, daily access to indoor and outdoor play spaces, an art studio, yoga instruction, gardening & more. Curriculum is play-based and inspired by progressive early childhood education theory. Open 7:30am–5:30pm. Find out why Nonotuck has been serving the Northampton community for 40 years! Conveniently located at 221 Riverside Dr., Florence in Northampton. For more information visit or contact them at 413-586-5996 or

Jan 21

Makerspace at The Hartsbrook School − Learn a new skill or craft! Make a design in 3D software (TinkerCAD) and print your creations, or experiment with Ozobots, Little Bits electronics and Sphero. Create a chain mail craft, learn to knit or take a fine arts class. Children and adults are welcome. This event is also an open house where interested families can learn more about the school, the academics, the practical arts and the land stewardship program. Experience Hartsbrook’s rich, hands-on teaching firsthand and imagine the possibilities for your child. Saturday, January 21st, 10am to 12noon. 193 Bay Road, Hadley, 413-586-1908,

Accepting applications for fall 2017. The Bement School founded in 1925 and located in Deerfield is a co-educational junior boarding and day school serving 210 students in kindergarten through grade 9. Bement’s rich, traditional curriculum motivates and challenges students with strong academics, a renowned fine arts program, and a diverse athletic program. Students participate in athletics and fine arts every day. The pervasive atmosphere at Bement is that of a family, learning and living together. Bement actively seeks an academically diverse, international, and multi-cultural student body. For information on how to apply, financial aid, or to arrange a visit to campus, call 413-774-4209

Open House: Jan 29

Sunday, January 29th: Open House from 2-3:30pm at Smith College Center for Early Childhood Education (Fort Hill). Visit welcoming classroom environments, chat with teachers, and find out more about the Reggio Emilia-inspired curriculum. Providing engaging, intentional early experiences that support children in becoming lifelong learners, joyful investigators, and thoughtful citizens of the world. Fort Hill has dedicated visual arts and music teachers and studios, an emphasis on natural materials, and classroom experiences that nurture joy, curiosity, deep thinking, and imagination. Consider joining the Fort Hill family! Actively accepting applications for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers for 2017-2018. Contact for information.

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January 14th – 20th, 2017


Suggest an EventCultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Events Happening in the Hilltowns

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Hilltown Family Variety Show9-10am – HILLTOWN FAMILY VARIETY SHOW: Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at This week, Guest DJ Priscilla brings you Children Songs from Around the World! An 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 9 years!

Saturday, January 14, 10am
Peter Pan was originally unveiled as a play in 1904. Later it was presented a novel and picture book, and eventually several films. The 1991 Spielberg movie, Hook (rated PG), tells the story of Peter Pan as a middle-aged lawyer. Peter must return to the magical Neverland when his young children are kidnapped by his nemesis, Captain Hook. Introduce your children to the Peter Pan saga by attending this special screening at Amherst Cinema. This screening is part of a family film series with morning movie showings at a discounted price. 413- 253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (<$)

Saturday, January 14, 10am
Pablo Picasso believed that: “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist.” Whether your child is the world’s next Picasso or not, arts and crafts are a fun and relaxing way to engage their creative side. With the growing popularity of adult coloring books, parents should feel encouraged to join in the fun. Three to six-year-olds and their parents are invited to the Clark Art Institute for a gallery talk and art-making activities designed specifically for this age group. Wear art-appropriate clothing. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 10am-11am
Have you ever heard the term “scute?” This biological term refers to an external bodily “plate,” such as a turtle’s shell, crocodile skin, and bird feet. Children and their parents are invited to learn about “Scutes and Scales” at this biologically themed nature event at the Hitchcock Center. This program is part of an ongoing Saturday Science series for children and their parents to explore natural topics through scientific activities. These events will take pace on the second Saturday of the month, through June. Call ahead to reserve your spot. 413-256-6006. 845 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 10am-12pm
 Forestry and logging are two career areas great for people who love to spend time outdoors. People of all ages are invited to come learn about sustainable forestry techniques, view oxen logging, and ask questions at this sustainable forestry demonstration and talk. Whether your teen wants to explore this career path, or your young child wants to see live animals, this is a great way to get outdoors and learn. The event will take place at a private residence. To register: email Tamsin Flanders at or call 413-628-4485, ext 4 and leave a message with your name, phone number, email address, and the number in your party. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 10am-2pm
What kinds of vegetables can you buy fresh in the cold months? Find out by shopping and connecting with local farmers at Berkshire Grown’s Holiday Farmers’ Market! Bring along your children to teach them about the changing of the seasons through food. Local meats, cheeses, and vegetables will be available, as well as craft items. There will also be live music and activities for kids. 413-528-0041. Monument Valley Middle School. 313 Monument Valley Road. Great Barrington, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, January 14, 10am-4pm
Have you ever wondered what the inside of a cockpit looks like? At New England Air Museum’s Open Cockpit Day you’ll see aircraft, including helicopters and a jet fighter, from the inside out. Visitors of all ages can also entertain the idea of piloting careers by taking flying lessons with a high tech simulator or participating in hands-on build and fly challenges. Visitors can also engage their historic interests by exploring historic aircrafts. 860-623-3305. 36 Perimeter Road. Windsor Locks, CT. (Adults; $ Ages 4-11 <$; Children under 3 FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 10:30am
Reading aloud is an essential step in the process of learning to read. This can be somewhat stressful for children who feel self-conscious about mistakes. Libraries across America have been enlisting therapy dogs as nonjudgmental listeners for children learning to read. Children of all ages are invited to bring a favorite book from home or choose one from the library and spend a short time reading to a certified therapy dog at the North Adams Public Library. 413-662-3133. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 10:30am and 5:30pm
Shakespearean style acting is an art form in its own right, requiring actors to master strange dialogue involving rhyme, meter, and unusual words. Can young people handle this acting challenge? Yes! Come see actors between the ages of eight and eighteen, members of The Young Shakespeare Players-East, perform Richard II. This play tells the story of a bad King who becomes a memorable victim. The Young Shakespeare Players-East is a non-profit theater group which gives local youth the opportunity to strengthen their performative skills by learning full length Shakespearean works. Performances of Richard II will take place January 11, 13, 14 and 15 at The Sloan Theater. Greenfield Community College. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 11am
Music Discoveries, is a ten week class taught by local musician and educator Evan Curran, at the Northampton Community Music Center. Young students ages five through eight are invited to take a free demonstration class to explore the possibilities of their musical potential. This class aims to enrich the young imagination through music as well as movement, song, and play. You’re never too young or too old to learn to play music, which has amazing benefits for the brain and can calm the emotions. 413-585-0001. 139 South Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 1pm-2pm
Come make your voice heard and share what you would like to find at the Jones Library. Library patrons between the ages of 12 and 18 are invited to join the Teen Advisory Board. Participants will help brainstorm programming, make suggestions for the collection, and help design the new Teen Space! Joining a Teen Advisory Board is a fun way to make friends while boosting your resume and experience for jobs and college applications. Participating on a Teen Advisory Board is considered community service and, therefore, a great resume booster. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 1pm-4pm
Have you ever visited the Hosmer Gallery at the Forbes Library? This library provides a lot more than a quiet community space and reading materials. Come to the library for an opening reception of the gallery’s latest exhibition, Miriam Wells and Patricia Dorr Parker: Paintings and Drawings Janice Doppler: Sculptures. Explore the paintings, drawings, and sculptures made by three local artists. Miriam Wells is a carpenter and historian as well as an artist. Patricia Dorr Parker’s paintings are inspired in part by her walks around the pioneer valley. Janice Doppler’s bird carvings are similarly inspired by nature. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 2:00pm
This January will be the 230th anniversary of Shay’s Rebellion, the armed uprising in western Massachusetts following the American Revolution. In conjunction with the anniversary celebration, curator Alex Mackenzie will be presenting “Behind the Storage Door,” highlighting firearms of the American Revolution. The weapons shown during this presentation will highlight the tactics and weapons used in Shay’s Rebellion, which peaked with an attack on the Springfield Arsenal on January 25, 1787. MacKenzie will explain the history and details of each firearm, enabling visitors to learn more about the rich collections of Springfield Armory National Historic Site. 413-734-8551. One Armory Square. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 3:30pm
In the late 1800s the motorcar caused a great disturbance in the rural way of life in Lenox. Cornelia Brooke Gilder, author of the forthcoming Edith Wharton’s Lenox will explore this entertaining story with you, followed by a Victorian tea. Ms. Gilder’s earlier works are Houses of the Berkshires (with Richard S. Jackson Jr.) and Hawthorne’s Lenox (with Julia Conklin Peters). Gilder and the late historian Joan Olshansky co-authored A History of Ventfort Hall. Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited. For reservations call 413-637-3206. For more information, visit the Ventfort Hall website. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. ($$).

Saturday, January 14, 6pm-8pm
Whole Children provides social and recreation programs for kids and teens of all abilities, particularly those with special needs. You can get to know the community at Whole Children by attending their free Pajama Party & Movie Night for children ages five through twelve. Whole Children will be playing Disney Pixar’s 2012 movie, Brave (rated PG). This film follows the journey of Merida, a strong-willed young woman who stands up for what she believes in, and brings change to the customs of her country of medieval Scotland. Please bring a nut-free snack to share. 413-585-8010. 41 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, January 14, 7pm
 Dances are a great way to get exercise, learn about rhythm, and gain better balance and movement skills. Contra dancing is a folk dance, dating back to to 17th century France, involving long lines of couples. The Pipeline Awareness Network for the Northeast is hosting a contra dance event as a fundraiser to protect Otis State Forst/Sandisfield from a potential pipeline. There is a suggested donation of twenty five dollars, but all amounts are welcome. The event will be held at the West Cummington Parish House. 27 W Main Street. Cummington, MA. (DONATION)

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Sunday, January 15, 2017

Hilltown Family Variety Show7-8am – FAMILY RADIO: Valley Free Radio (WXOJ-LP 103.3FM Northampton, MA) airs encores of 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, to hear a rebroadcast of a favorite Doo-Wop Episode with Guest DJs, Michael & Tony Napolitano of Preschool of Rock. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcast anytime – click here to see over 9 years of archived shows.

Sunday, January 15, 10:-10:45am; 10:45-11:15am
Are your children interested in music? Do you want to teach them about Martin Luther King, Jr. and the legacy of the Civil Rights Movement? PJ Preschool Pals at Lander-Grinspoon Academy presents Music for a Better World, a joyful celebration of Martin Luther King for young children with musician Katryna Nields. Music Class runs from 10:00-10:45, followed by Tumble Time from 10:45-11:15.Questions? Contact 257 Prospect St. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)

Sunday, January 15, 10:30am and 5:30pm
Shakespearean style acting is an art form in its own right, requiring actors to master strange dialogue involving rhyme, meter, and unusual words. Can young people handle this acting challenge? Yes! Come see actors between the ages of eight and eighteen, members of The Young Shakespeare Players-East, perform Richard II. This play tells the story of a bad King who becomes a memorable victim. The Young Shakespeare Players-East is a non-profit theater group which gives local youth the opportunity to strengthen their performative skills by learning full length Shakespearean works. Performances of Richard II will take place January 11, 13, 14 and 15 at The Sloan Theater. Greenfield Community College. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, January 15, 12pm-2pm
Card games challenge your logical reasoning abilities, sometimes also involving mathematics and various social skills. Playing games in general is a great way to connect with your kids in a low-tech way, without screen technology. Do you or your kids like to collect card games? Kids and parents are invited to Make It Springfield to meet and play collectible card games. Challenge your brain by learning a new game, while meeting new families with shared interests. 168 Worthington Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, January 15. 1pm-3:30pm
Playing music is a physical as well as mental which encourages careful listening and focus. Reading musical scores requires you to train your brain to recognize patterns and decode information. You can get your children started exploring sound, building instruments, and creating music at the Clark Art Institute’s Music Day. In conjunction with I/O Fest this day of musical exploration will also feature performances brought to you by the Williams College Department of Music. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (Adults $; Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID FREE)

Sunday, January 15, 1:30pm-3:30pm
Have you ever wanted to design your own card game? Some artists like make personal designs for decks of playing cards or Tarot cards. In this workshop at Knack: The Art of Clever Reuse, participants will make their own Memory game using imagery from vintage international postage stamps and colorful scrap paper. This is the perfect activity for mixed-media or collage artists looking for a new project. All materials are included and the cards are pre cut. If you would like to attend, please RSVP on Facebook or via Facebook messenger. Payment will be required at least one week before the workshop, via PayPal to Knack’s PayPal address:, or you may drop by the store. Workshop is limited to eight participants. 413-529-0126. 116 Pleasant Street. Easthampton, MA. ($$)

Sunday, January 15, 2pm
Pamela Chatterton-Purdy’s new exhibition at the Springfield Museums combines historical learning with art studies. Her work, Icons of the Civil Rights Movement, uses wooden panels and painted portraits to depict dynamic leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr., Emmett Till, Rosa Parks, Ralph David Abernathy, Julian Bond, Fannie Lou Hamer, Harry Belafonte and Jeffrey Brace. In time for Martin Luther King Day, you can think about the influence of these civil rights activists while exploring contemporary artwork. On Sunday, January 15, the artist will be providing a lecture. Bring your curiosity and your questions. The lecture is free with museum admission. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Sunday, January 15, 6pm-8pm
Nordic skiing is a beloved activity which connects community members to place through an appreciation for the changing seasons. Bread Euphoria invited you to an all-you-can-eat pizza and salad night, as a fundraiser to benefit the Mohawk Nordic Ski Team. Proceeds will help buy new uniforms and offset travel expenses for team members. In addition to a delicious meal there will be a raffle, and by John Bye and Peg Cowen! 413-268-7757. 206 Main Street. Haydenville, MA. (Adult $; Students and children <$)

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: East Longmeadow, Pelham & Whately

Monday, January 16, 9am-7pm
Berkshire Community College hosts a day of service to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with different community projects for volunteers to choose from, such as cooking and serving a community meal, volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, or assisting staff at a community center to run activities for kids. Volunteering at the Harvest Table is a good match for families with children. 55 Fenn St. Pittsfield, MA (VOLUNTEER)

Monday, January 16, 9am-7pm
This year, on American Friends Service Committee’s 33rd Annual Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., AFSC will sponsor a series of events over the course of the day – from the Sojourner Truth Walking Tour and a Children’s Program (run by Dr. Ousmane Power-Greene) – to the traditional convocation at Edwards Church – to a series of workshops and trainings in various spaces in downtown Northampton by local activists and activist groups. For schedule and more details, visit 413-584-8975. Florence & Northampton (FREE)

Monday, January 16, 10am-1pm
Greenfield Community College invites the community to celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. with a day of activities and programs for families. To volunteer and/or RSVP, click here or call 413-775-1819. Greenfield, MA (VOLUNTEER)

Monday, January 16, 10am-3:30pm
Residents of Holyoke: does your teen want to become more involved in the community? Maybe he or she wishes there were some recreational opportunity which doesn’t currently exist. Holyoke teens are invited to a youth community conversation, to discuss issues such as employment, safety, engagement, and recreational activities in the area. Discussions will be recorded and compiled into a 10 year youth vision plan for the City of Holyoke. The Holyoke Youth Commission will present the plan to Elected Officials and a permanent recording will be housed at the Holyoke Public Library. Holyoke Council on Aging and Senior Center. Lunch and snacks will be provided. 291 Pine Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Monday, January 16, 12:30pm
One way to teach your kids about the legacy of Martin Luther King Junior is to encourage their participation in community service tasks. People of all ages are invited to MCLA’s Church Street Center to engage in service tasks such as painting, cleaning, organizing, building, winterizing, simple sewing, or making kits. The free luncheon and celebration begins at 12:30pm. Registration begins at 8:30am along with coffee and pastries. For more information call 413-664-4006 or visit the Northern Berkshire Community Action Coalition website. Church Street. North Adams, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Monday, January 16, 11am-1pm
An understanding of social justice history and knowledge of how citizens of this country have fought for change in the past can inform acts of resistance in the present. Baptist minister Martin Luther King Junior sparked change locally and nationally by articulating the injustices felt by marginalized groups. His actions involved extreme personal sacrifices as he was jailed 29 times during his campaign against racial segregation. This year, the MLK Day celebration at Mass Mutual Center will explore the theme of “Lifting the Spirit of Healing & Unity in our Beloved Community.” The event will feature performances musicians from the Sonido Musica School Partnership programs; the Springfield Community Chorale, CMSS Martin Luther King Festival Orchestra; a performance by D.R.E.A.M STUDIO; an oratorical selection by Wesley Days Jr and much more. 1277 Main Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Monday, January 16, 1:30pm-7pm
Viewing educational films is a great way to learn while being entertained. Foreign films can help you connect with a language and culture other than your own. The 2015 documentary, Seasons (not rated), follows travelers Jacques Perrin and Jacques Cluzaud throughout Europe in search of brown bears, wild horses, wolves and other animals in their natural habitat. You can view this film, in French with English subtitles, at the Berkshire Museum’s Little Cinema. Learn about animals and earth science while brushing up on your French knowledge. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Route 7. Pittsfield, MA. (<$)

Monday, January 16, 2pm-6pm
Learning to tune up and repair your own bike can save you time and money while teaching you about engineering and problem solving. Bring your bike or just your questions to Make It Springfield, and have your repairs taken care of by RadSpringfield. Stop in anytime during these drop in hours. All ages are welcome. There is a suggested donation up to twenty five dollars or more, depending on the repair. You can also bring by your old, unused bikes to donate. 168 Worthington Street. Springfield, MA. (DONATION)

Monday, January 16, 5pm-6pm
The Berkshire South Regional Community Center hosts a community supper prepared by some of the best chefs in the Berkshires every Monday. Join your neighbors and make new friends. Donations are accepted as well as contributions of non-perishable food items for local food banks encouraged. No reservations required. 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: Agawam, Amherst, Belchertown, Cheshire, Easthampton, Florence, Gill, Great Barrington, Greenfield, Hatfiled, Huntington, Lanesborough, Lee, Ludlow, New Salem, North Adams, Sheffield, Sunderland, Turners Falls, Ware & West Springfield.

Tuesday, January 17, 2pm
Join Kristen Oehlrich, assistant director of the Clark Art Institute’s Research and Academic Program, for a talk focusing on the work of female photographers Julia Margaret Cameron, Anna Atkins, and Gertrude Käsebier, whose work is featured in the special exhibition Photography and Discovery. Photography and Discovery, on view through February 5, is the first extensive exhibition of the Clark’s collection of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century photography. For more information, call 413 458 2303. The gallery talk is free with paid admission. 225 South Street, Williamstown, MA. (Adults $; Clark members, children 18 and younger, and students with valid ID FREE)

Tuesday, January 17, 5:30pm-8pm
People have long been a popular subject for paintings. Since the invention of photography, photographic portraits have grown into a thriving industry all over the world. You can learn the basics of photographic portraits by attending a free, interactive seminar at the Lee Library. Photographer Thad Kubis will discuss technical decisions about lighting, depth of field, and selecting the correct focal length. He will also discuss techniques used for candid, studio, and street portraits. 413-243-0385. 100 Main Street. Lee, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, January 17, 6pm-8pm
Small businesses are a key component to any thriving community. Small businesses allow community members to support each other and connect with where there products come from. If you have ever thought about opening your own business, you can learn tips for becoming a successful business owner at this free, interactive workshop. Learn about all of the free community resources which already exist to help small and emerging businesses. Space is limited for this event. Please register on eventbrite. The event will take place in the Make-it-Springfield Space space at 168 Worthington Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, January 17, 6:30pm-8:30pm
Coloring isn’t just for kids! The Cushman Library invites you to an intergenerational evening of coloring, for adults and teens (ages twelve and up). Coloring is a fun and creative way to destress. Come alone, or connect with your teen through a shared interest in art. The library will supply beautiful images for you to color, in varying levels of detail, as well as colored pencils. You are also welcome to bring your own if you’d prefer. Come for the entire session, or drop in when you can. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)

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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: Amherst, Athol, Becket, Belchertown, Bernardston, Cummington, Deerfield, East Longmeadow, Erving, Granby, Greenfield, Huntington, Leverett, Monson, New Marlborough, North Adams, Northampton, Sheffield, Shelburne Falls, South Deerfield, Springfield, Turners Falls, Wendell, West Springfield, and Williamsburg.

Wednesday, January 18, 2:30pm-3:30pm
A solid network of friends can be a huge help during the tumultuous teenage years. The Southwick Public Library invites anyone in grades seven through twelve to socialize at their Teen Winter Hangout. The library will provide activities such as 3D doodling with a 3D printing pen, as well as games on the Wii system. At this month’s hangout the group will be playing with LEGOs. For more information, call 413- 569-1221 ex3. 95 Feeding Hills Road. Southwick, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, January 18, 6:30pm-8pm
Ghee is a high heat, lactose-free cooking oil made from clarified butter. Ghee has been used for centuries to relieve digestive disorders and promote general health. Join Hannah Jacobson-Hardy, community herbalist, and Daniel Rainwater, health coach, during a ghee making demonstration at River Valley Co Op. After transforming butter into ghee, participants will infuse the ghee with herbs and spices to make a medicinal form of Ghee often used in Ayurveda. There will be taste tests and handouts! Registration is required. Call 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, January 18, 7pm
Many people are fascinated by the CIA, the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States, due to their work with classified information. You can learn about American history from the Cold war to Vietnam to the Middle East, through this local theatre performance. Travels with a Masked Man tells the story of the son of a CIA agent, and all the unanswered questions this child faces about his father’s work. This play, written and performed by John Hadden, is based on his book Conversations with a Masked Man: My Father, the CIA, and Me. In addition to exploring national and political themes, it is also the personal story of father and son. See it performed at Austen Riggs Theatre 37. For more information, call 413-931-5338. 37 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA. ($)

Wednesday, January 18, 7:30pm
The Markham-Nathan Fund is a fundraising group, organizing to support small, social justice organizations in Western Massachusetts. You can support the Markham-Nathan Fund, and by extension many social justice causes in your community, by attending the Watermelon Wednesday Benefit Concert! Hear a range of musical genres including folk, classical, rhythm & blues, funk, jazz, be-bop, and more. Performers include Chris Brashear and Ben Demerath, The Wisteria String Quartet, Mister Sun, Charles Neville Quartet, and The Valley Jazz Divas. Support local musicians and local causes at the same time, at the Academy of Music Theatre. 413-584-9032. 274 Main Street. Northampton, MA. ($$)


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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: Agawam, Amherst, Athol, Belchertown, East Longmeadow, Florence, Gill, Greenfield, Hatfield, Huntington, Lee, Lenox, Millers Falls, Montague, Northampton, Sheffield, South Hadley, and Turners Falls.

Thursday, January 19, 9:30am-11:15am
Picking a preschool for your child is a tough decision. At the Northampton Parents Center Preschool Fair you can meet representatives and ask specific questions about your child’s needs. There will be representatives from Northampton and Hadley area preschools present to provide information. Toys will be available for children to play with and a snack will be served. Snow date is January 26th. Northampton Parents Center is located in the lower level of Edwards Church at the corner of State and Main Streets in Northampton. Please use the back door and public parking. Email with questions. 297 Main Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, January 19, 11am
Hatha yoga is an ancient, meditative exercise which has been practiced since the 11th century. People gravitate toward the many benefits of yoga which include increased strength, flexibility, concentration, and relaxation. You can explore this beneficial practice by joining a four-part hatha yoga class, focused on loving kindness meditation, at the Clark Art Institute. Classes will be held on Thursdays from January 19 through February 9 at 11 am in the Michael Conforti Pavilion. Participants are invited welcome to attend all four classes or drop in on one. Register on the Clark website. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (Single Class $; Package $$)

Thursday, January 19, 12pm
Now through April 2nd, you can learn about the art of Japanese woodblook printing at the Clark Art Institute’s exhibition, Japanese Impressions. Art lovers are also invited to take a closer look at an object from the Clark’s collection: Utagawa Hiroshige’s Plum Estate, Kameido from One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.Collector and donor Adele Rodbell will run this discussion. Tickets include admission to the galleries as well as a lunch. Register online or over the phone. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. ($)

Thursday, January 19, 12:15pm-1pm
The Republican Heritage Series was created to educate people on the ethnic heritages and cultural contributions of the people of Western Massachusetts. Learn more about the Pioneer Valley by exploring the personal histories of people who reside here. The Springfield Museums will be providing a lunchtime lecture with three authors of this series. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Thursday, January 19, 7pm
Political change is often sparked on a community level, through discussion and action among neighbors. Come to the Jones Library for a screening of the TED talk: We Need to Talk about an Injustice by Bryan Stevenson. Stevenson shares some hard truths about America with candor, insight, and persuasiveness. He is the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative, fighting poverty and racial discrimination in the criminal justice system, with significant success. He is also the author of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption. The video will be followed by a brief discussion and then an opportunity to continue work on some local anti-racism action projects. For more information, see the Coming Together website, or contact Janet Ryan at 413-259-3223. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, January 20, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: Amherst, Belchertown, Cummington, East Longmeadow, Easthampton, Florence, Granby, Great Barrington, Greenfield, Hadley, Housatonic, Longmeadow, Monson, Northampton, Pelham, Shutesbury, South Hadley, Stockbridge, and Sunderland.

Friday, January 20, 10:30am-11:30am
Simple toys such as blocks help kids build fine motor skills and their understanding of cause and effect, through creative free play. Parents can bring their children between the ages of three months to five years old, to the Family Center to play with balls, blocks, beads, and books! Parents will fill out an “Ages and Stages” questionnaire about their child’s development with the help of professional staff, while their children play. Please call The Family Center at 413-664-4821 to register. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Friday, January 20, 10:30am-11:30am
Do your kids love animals? You can help nurture your child’s love of animals into a love of scientific learning. Youth ages three to six are invited to animal focused “Kidleidoscope” programs at Great Falls Discovery Center. Siblings and friends are welcome. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Participants will learn about bears, who share our home in the Connecticut River Valley. The January 6 program will focus on winter birds. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Friday, January 20, 7pm-9pm
One of the Oxford English Dictionary 2016 finalists for “word of the year” includes “hygge,” a word of Danish origin which translates to: “A quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being” (Oxford English Dictionary). Hygge may be a key explanation as to why the citizens of Denmark rank number one on the World Happiness Report in spite of the frigid winters in their country. In addition to fuzzy blankets and mugs of hot chocolate, a sense of belonging to your community can be another way to achieve “hygge.” Connect with your community this winter by attending a community concert! All are welcome to the Williston Northampton School’s concert which will involve singing groups, instrumental groups, and solo musicians. Phillips Stevens Chapel. 19 Payson Ave. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

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Hilltown Families’ list of Weekly Suggested Events is supported, in part, by a grant from the Ashfield, Chester, Chesterfield, Conway, Erving, Pelham, and Russell Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.






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