Suggested Events for July 14th – 20th, 2018
If you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity 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.
Serving 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.
After-School Classes & Enrichment Programs
Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space. Our community is rich in after-school learning opportunities to supplement the interests of our children, teens, and life-long learners. We are putting together a directory of after-school & weekend classes and enrichment programs happening across Western Massachusetts to be published on our web site later this month and featured throughout the school year. If you have a class or program you would like to have included in our directory, contact us at email@example.com to learn about our advertising options and sponsorship packages.
The New England Air Museum’s Soar into Summer Fun programming has begun! Enjoy eight weeks of interactive activities for children, families, and aviation enthusiasts of all ages. Daily programs include climb-aboard experiences in real aircraft; hands-on Build & Fly Challenges; interactive Flight Science Demonstrations; virtual flight simulators; and more. The Museum, located in Windsor Locks, CT, is open daily from 10am-5pm. Admission is $15 for ages 15+, $14 for seniors 65+ and $10 for ages 4-14. Museum members and children under 3 are admitted free; discounted admission is available for veterans and active duty military personnel. For more information about specific activities and program schedules, visit www.neam.org or call (860) 623-3305.
The 2018 KO FESTIVAL OF PERFORMANCE has been curated on the theme of “RADICAL ACTS.” It’s all original work, created by the artists who come to Ko. From July 6 – Aug. 5, you can meet a group of 60s radicals, hear a true tale of going AWOL on a shamanic trip in the Amazonian jungle, witness a call to action by a woman whose encounters with bears – both real & mythic, help her discover links between her ill health & the environment — and we close with a show about the courage to create. Post-show discussions follow the shows & we’d like them to be intergenerational. Teens, Adults, Seniors – JOIN US! Tix for shows + our STORY SLAM & WORKSHOPS are available online at kofest.com & at the Box Office 413-542-3750. Special prices for SNAP/EBT cardholders.
PaintBox Theatre—the Valley’s theatre of imagination and improvisation—presents Pirates! They swash. They buckle. They crack very bad jokes. Last summer’s cast of corsairs will bring even more silliness and pirate antics to the shores of the PaintBox stage. Be prepared to sing, dance, and roll your arrrrs like a pirate. Captain Braidbeard says, “Mateys, dress on up and sail on down to PaintBox Theatre.” Join us for Pirate Day on Sun. July 22 after the 10:30am show! Shows are Sat. July 21, 10:30am & 1pm, Sun. July 22, 10:30am at Easthampton’s Williston Theatre and Wed. July 25, 10:30am at the Easthampton Band Shell. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets. Season Tickets: $24. Group discounts (12+): $7. firstname.lastname@example.org, paintboxtheatre.org.
This summer, enjoy the beautiful outdoors at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA. Bobbie’s Meadow is a new space that invites guests to connect and be inspired by art and nature. Read with Bright Spot Therapy Dogs! Get moving with Little Kids Yoga, or join Creative Movement with the Center Dance Studio. Plus special storytimes, art making and a new outdoor scavenger hunt. Bobbie’s Meadow, a new space to explore, relax and enjoy. The museum is open Mondays in July and August; see carlemuseum.org for days, times and sign up information. All activities are free with Museum Admission. Become a Member and come for free every day!
Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space.Our community is rich in after-school learning opportunities to supplement the interests of our children, teens, and life-long learners. We are putting together a directory of after-school & weekend classes and enrichment programs happening across Western Massachusetts to be published on our web site later this month and featured throughout the school year.If you have a class or program you would like to have included in our directory, contact us at email@example.com to learn about our advertising options and sponsorship packages.
Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.
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, 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 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
JOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community-building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish, and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to email@example.com.
LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 14th – 20th, 2018
Saturday, July 14th, 2018
9-10am – HILLTOWN FAMILY VARIETY SHOW: Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org. Guest DJ Jason Didner invites you for an hour of “Fun in the Sun” themed music by today’s great children’s musicians and a few well renowned classic rock and reggae acts. You’ll get to know more about the “Jersey Shore Sound” that Jason and band are proud to call an influence. You’ll catch the beach party spirit that’s on full display from Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, an energy that also shows up in tracks by Brady Rymer and Yosi. You’ll enjoy the feel-good sounds of Jimmy Cliff, Suzi Shelton, Miss Nina and more. Whether you’re headed for the beach, the lake or the pool, this episode can be your summer soundtrack! 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 select from over 10 years of archived shows!
Saturday, July 14, 9am-4pm
The daylily is one of the most beautiful wildflowers that grows in our areas. It’s bright orange color and large blossoms make it a welcome addition to any garden. In the language of flowers, daylily is associated with cheerfulness and filial devotion. In China the flower is known as “Wong Yu,” which means “forgetting worries.” It is commonly worn by mothers, as it represents the love of the child for its mother. Some species of daylily are also edible and can be found in traditional preparations of hot and sour soup. Come celebrate this charming plant at the Daylily and Arts Festival, this Saturday. Silver Garden Daylilies in Greenfield is home to 1300 different varieties of Daylilies and will be welcoming local artists and vendors. Silver Garden Daylilies. Greenfield, MA (FREE)
Saturday, July 14, 10am
AMERICAN HISTORY/FRANCOPHONE STUDIES
Did you know that French is the most commonly spoken language after English in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine? Primarily in New England and Louisiana, Franco-American culture continues to thrive, despite being largely forgotten by American society at large. People of Francophone descent form the fifth largest ethnic group in the country and their cultural legacy remains present in literary, musical, and culinary traditions from around the country. Author Jonathan Gosnell will be discussing the history of Francophone communities in the United States and exploring the evolution of Franco-American cultural identity in this talk, drawn from his new book Franco-America in the Making: The Creole Nation Within. Holyoke Public Library. 250 Chestnut Street, Holyoke, MA (FREE)
Saturday, July 14, 10am
Beekeeping has been practiced by human beings for thousands of years! Archeological records show that humans were constructing beehives out of straw and clay in Palestine more than four thousand years ago. In many parts of the Middle East and North Africa, clay beehives are still being used today. In early American history, apiarists used sections of hollowed out trees as beehives until as late as the 20th century. The first beehives that resemble the ones most of us are familiar with were developed in the 18th and 19th century, when sliding frames came into use. If you are an amateur apiarist, or just curious about this fascinating and ecologically significant hobby, come check out the beehives at the Massachusetts State Apiary. This is a great opportunity to learn all about the different kinds of beehives that apiarists are using today. Don’t forget to bring your veils, jackets, and gloves! 911 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA (FREE)
Saturday, July 14, 10-11:30am
HEALTH AND WELLNESS/LYME DISEASE
Here in Western Massachusetts, Lyme disease is something we unfortunately have to deal with. Whether it’s playing in the backyard or hiking in the forest, it’s important to be aware of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. The key thing to remember is that there are steps we can take to protect ourselves while we enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Herbalist Bonnie Bloom will be discussing Lyme disease treatment and prevention, with a special emphasis on how herbs can be used to help us deal with tick-borne illness. Get the facts so you can freely enjoy your time out in nature, without being worried. Sawmill Herb Farm. 140 Meadow Street, Florence, MA ($)
Saturday, July 14, 1-4pm
Imagination is perhaps our richest gift, and one that is unquestionably strongest in children. Venture into the realm of imagination at the Emily Dickinson Museum’s annual 19th Century Children’s Circus! Inspired by the backyard circus, which Emily Dickinson’s niece and nephews performed at the homestead, this event features 19th century literary history, storytelling, dances, and a parade. For more information and a complete list of activities, please visit Creatures of Bliss and Mystery: A Children’s Circus. Emily Dickinson Museum. 280 Main Street, Amherst, MA ($)
Saturday, July 14, 5:30-7:30pm
ART STUDIES/EXHIBITION OPENING
American Neoclassical painter Maxfield Parrish was a key figure in the so-called “Golden Age of Illustration,” producing hundreds of paintings, posters, calendars, magazine covers, and greeting cards. Parrish’s work is immediately recognizable for its striking saturated hues and romantic, imaginative imagery. His signature vibrant colors were developed during a bout of tuberculosis, when Parrish had time to experiment with combining different kinds of glazes and oils. The Norman Rockwell Museum’s new exhibit “Keepers of the Flame: Parrish, Wyeth, Rockwell and the Narrative Tradition” celebrates the works of these three monumental figures in 20th century American narrative art. The Norman Rockwell Museum. 9 Glendale Road, Stockbridge, MA ($)
Saturday, July 14, 5:30-7:30pm
Renowned glass artist Josh Simpson is perhaps most famous for his glass planets, incredibly detailed, colorful glass sculptures, depicting landmasses, oceans, and even clouds. These planets range in size from paper weights to the massive 107 pound “Megaplanet.” Simpson’s recent work continues to be inspired by astrophysics and his latest show “Galactic Landscapes” opens this Saturday at the Berkshire Museum. Blending Simpson’s innovative glass blowing techniques with concepts and visions of the cosmos, this show is not to be missed! Berkshire Museum. 39 South Street, Pittsfield, MA ($)
Sunday, July 15th, 2018
7-8am – 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 www.valleyfreeradio.org. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcast anytime – click here to select from over 10 years of archived shows!
Sunday, July 15, 11am-12:30pm
Laurel Park in Northampton is a unique community with a long, rich history. Originally created as a Methodist camp in 1872, Laurel Park was meant to be a tent community of over 900 tents surrounding a central open air tabernacle. As the tents were quickly found to be uncomfortable, small cottages were built, 100 of which remain to this day. In the late-19th century, as many as 8,000 worshipers would arrive by train on any given day, coming from Springfield and Hartford. In 1968, the park ownership was transferred to the Laurel Park Association, which continues to own the land and manage the property. Learn all about the history of this special place, at this presentation, featuring historical photographs. Parker Memorial Chapel. Northampton, MA (FREE)
Sunday, July 15, 12-4pm
It’s time again for the Hilltown Farmers Market in lovely Colrain! Come enjoy the best produce the Hilltown farms have to offer and celebrate our community with more than a dozen local vendors, live music, and delicious food. Summer in the Hilltowns is such a special time so come on out, meet new people, and enjoy the fresh air. And don’t forget to check out Hilltown Farmer Market, every third Sunday of the month. 1 Coombs Hill Road, Colrain, MA (FREE)
Sunday, July 15, 1-3pm
HISTORY/ARTS AND CRAFTS
Human history is full of fascinating traditional arts and crafts, highlighting the incredible ingenuity and adaptability of human being. Sniggling, for example, is the traditional art of catching eels by inserting a large hook, attached to a ten foot hazel wand, into the muddy holes and crannies where eels lurk. And scrimshaw is the 18th century craft of engraving whale bones and walrus tusks. You probably won’t learn about sniggling and scrimshaw at Family Craft Day at the Shelburne Historical Society Museum, but you will learn about lots of other traditional crafts, including quilting, weaving, and spinning. All ages welcome. Light refreshments provided. Shelburne Historical Society. Corner of Church and Maple Street, Shelburne Falls, MA (FREE)
Sunday, July 15, 1:30pm
Ayahuasca, or yage, is a trance-inducing, highly psychoactive traditional spiritual medicine, used by communities throughout the Amazon river basin. Used for thousands of years in ritual context, ayahuasca became known to the industrialized world in the mid-20th century when figures from the American and European counter-culture, such as William Burroughs and Terence McKenna, began to seek it out as a vehicle for spiritual enlightenment. In recent years, interest in ayahuasca in the United States and Europe has grown significantly, although as ayahuasca use dramatically increases around the world, indigenous communities in the Amazon are becoming concerned over the commercialization and cultural appropriation of what has traditionally been a form of sacramental medicine. In his new play “The Oven,” celebrated academic, translator, and author Ilan Stavans describes his own experiences with ayahuasca deep in the Amazon rainforest and explores the age-old confrontation between rational skepticism and a universe that undeniably functions according to rules that we cannot possibly understand. Part of the Ko Theater Festival. Amherst, MA ($)
Sunday, July 15, 2-8pm
RELIGIOUS STUDIES/MUSIC STUDIES
Referred to by Mahatma Gandhi as his “spiritual dictionary,” the Bhagavad Gita is a 700 verse Hindu scripture, which presents an ethical and metaphysical dialogue between Arjuna, prince of the Pandavas, and Krishna, the god of compassion, who serves as Arjuna’s charioteer in a terrible war that divided families and communities. As Arjuna sets foot upon the battlefield, he realizes that all the enemies who stand before him are his own kinsmen, friends and relatives. Arjuna refuses to fight any longer and turns to Krishna for guidance. The conversation that follows comprises one of the richest and most profound spiritual and philosophical documents in history. The Bhagavad Gita became on of the key scriptures of the 15th century Bhakti movement in India, which can be in part understood as a move towards a more personal relationship with the divine, rather than an experience that is inherently mediated through ritual. In this way, the Bhakti movement can be likened to the Protestant revolution in Europe. Part of the Bhakti tradition that remains to this day is the custom of kirtan. This call-and-response form of devotional music recites myths and legends, prayers, and names of the gods. Set to music, often played on a harmonium and tabla drums, kirtan creates a musical, spiritual experience that is unlike any other. Come learn all about this amazing tradition at the Summer Kirtan Festival this Sunday! In addition to kirtan performances, the festival will also feature puppet shows, raffle, and dinner. 374 Old Montague Road, Amherst, MA (FREE)
Monday, July 16, 2018
Monday, July 16, 4-5pm
Technology moves fast. Since 3D printing first emerged just a few short years ago, the technology has progressed faster than many people could ever imagine. Now, people have successfully 3D printed all kinds of things, from an entire, livable house to synthetic human skin, which could someday be used to 3D print human organs. Come learn all about the possible applications for this fascinating technology and try your hand at designing and printing an object! To register for this free workshop, visit Maker Space Workshop. This event is appropriate for children ages 7 and above. East Longmeadow Public Library. 60 Center Square, East Longmeadow, MA (FREE)
July 1 through August 31
Do you love exploring and learning about our rivers? If so, Quest2018 is for you! The Connecticut River Conservancy’s Quest2018! Back by popular demand, CRC’s Quest2018 will take you on a brand new river adventure with your health and well-being in mind. It’s an interactive, online and smartphone-based scavenger hunt that will help you explore the entire four-state length of our great Connecticut River basin by searching for clues. From July 1 through August 31, CRC invites you to join in the fun. Sign up, get all the details on how to play, and see the list of great prizes at their website. Connecticut River Valley (FREE)
Tuesday, July 17th, 2018
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, July 17, 10:30am
HEALTH AND WELLNESS/YOGA
The tremendous physical and mental benefits of yoga can be enjoyed by people of all ages! Being exposed to yoga at an early age is a great way to instill a lifelong love of this amazing form of meditative exercise. For many children, yoga poses may be a natural extension of their own games. Yoga can also be a great way to help children learn focus, concentration, and patience. Children between the ages of 3 and 5 and their adult caregivers are invited to participate in this special Little Kids Yoga class! Class will be held outside in the meadow at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art and will feature sun salutations, breathing exercises, and movements inspired by nature. Registration required. Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 125 West Bay Road, Amherst, MA ($)
Tuesday, July 17, 6-8pm
The word “fiddle” is thought to be derived from the Roman goddess of joy Vitula. Anyone who has heard fiddle playing can see why this association makes sense. The frenetic, buoyant sound of the fiddle just makes you want to get up and dance! This Tuesday, the Clark Art Institute continues its series of free summer concerts with a performance by champion fiddler Kimber Ludiker. Ludiker, a fifth-generation fiddle player, has won three National Fiddle Championships and been nominated for a Grammy Award. Clark Art Institute. 225 South Street, Williamstown, MA (FREE)
Tuesday, July 17, 6-8pm
Florence’s burgeoning food scene is drawing attention for foodies from all over the area. From traditional southern Chinese fare to the areas first pie bar, Florence’s restaurants really highlight the creativity and diversity of our community. At the Little Taste of Florence you can sample tasty offerings from many of the town’s most popular restaurants and celebrate the place we call home. Downtown Florence. Florence, MA ($)
Wednesday, July 18th, 2018
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, July 18, 11am-12pm
Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore once wrote: “The sea surges up with laughter, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.” It’s no surprise that we are called to the sea, especially in the summer. The waves, sun, and sand have a unique beauty and serenity. Local singer and storyteller Tim Van Egmond will be performing songs and stories about the sea, beach, and summer on the patio at River Valley Co-op this wednesday. Don’t miss this special summer picnic show! River Valley Co-op. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA (FREE)
Wednesday, July 18, 8pm
The Double Edge Theatre is one of the areas most unique cultural treasures. This one-of-a-kind theater invites the audience to wander through farm and forest in a truly immersive theater experience, designed to create a living culture that is deeply engaged with land and community. The land itself is a vital character in all the shows at the Double Edge Theatre, as it is brought to life through art and music. This summer, the Double Edge Theatre will be performing “We The People,” a fantastical musical odyssey through the history and psyche of America, featuring a cast of knights, farmers, immigrants, and suffragists. This is an experience you will never forget! The Double Edge Theatre. The Farm. Ashfield, MA ($$)
Thursday, July 19th, 2018
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, July 19, 3-7pm
Many gardeners, farmers, and children are well aware that something magical happens when you spend a day with your hands in the dirt. Even when it’s hot and the sweat is stinging your eyes, you are glad to be out there. Well, it turns out that scientists are increasingly confirming this feeling of well-being that comes from working in the dirt. Researchers have determined that one of the most common forms of bacteria that populates our backyards can reduce stress and inflammation and may even be able to cure certain diseases. This event at Abundance Farm in Northampton invites community members to come volunteer on the farm for a couple hours and there share a potluck meal together. Make new friends, work with the land, and share delicious food! Abundance Farm. 257 Prospect Street, Northampton, MA (FREE)
Thursday, July 19, 5:30-8pm
Mexican folk dancing traditions date back thousands of years. Among the Aztecs there were particular dances performed by priests in ritual contexts as well as popular folk dances. When the Spanish conquered Central America, they outlawed the pagan religious dances but were unable to completely stamp out local folk dances. As with many indigenous cultural practices, Christian missionaries realized they could not succeed in eradicating these folk dances so they instead adapted the dances to reflect explicitly Christian themes and morals. Over time, these folk dance traditions also developed Afro-Caribbean influences. Today, folk dance makes up an important part of Mexican cultural identity and has become one of the few ways that indigenous practices are preserved. However, many indigenous groups resist what they feel is the government’s attempts to assimilate and appropriate their cultural traditions. Pittsfield will be celebrating their regular 3rd Thursday street festival with performances by the Calpulli Mexican Dance Company, in addition to food and craft vendors, and live music. Also don’t forget to stop by Berkshire Museum for Third Thursday, all Berkshire County residents are welcome to visit the museum for free. Downtown Pittsfield. Pittsfield, MA (FREE)
Friday, July 20th, 2018
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, July 20, 5:30-7:30pm
MUSEUM ADVENTURES/ART STUDIES
Many of the greatest artists in history began creating art when they were very young. When Michelangelo was only 12 years old he painted the masterpiece, “The Torment of Saint Anthony.” It’s hard to imagine ever being able to create something so beautiful, let alone at such a young age. But this shows that children are just as able to make beautiful art as anyone else and there is no age that’s too young to begin to make art. Who knows, maybe your kiddo will end up being the next Michelangelo! This family-friendly art event will provide light refreshments and all the art supplies you’ll need to create a masterpiece. Berkshire Museum. 39 South Street, Pittsfield, MA ($)
Hilltown Families’ list of Suggested Events is supported in part by a grant from the Belchertown, Buckland, Chicopee, Plainfield, Shelburne, Westhampton, and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.