Weekly Suggested Events for October 29-November 4, 2022

Home > Suggested Events > Weekly Suggested Events for October 29-November 4, 2022
Our list of events this week is packed with Halloween happenings and community activities taking place around western MA this weekend!

Are you looking for things to do in western Massachusetts? Seeking place-based learning ideas? Are you a self-directed, life-long, and/or experiential learner? Are you curious or wanting to support the interests of your family? Our weekly Suggested Events list includes suggested learning ideas, resources, and fun events for all ages, each week!

Scroll down to discover featured events, learning opportunities, and educational videos to support learning from home. And be sure to subscribe to our free weekly eNewsletter so you never miss out!

It is MICAfest time! Tickets are on sale now. Catch three days of live performances of dance, music, poetry, comedy, theater, and more! See local favorites Rythea Lee, Lisa Bastoni, Happier Valley Comedy, Christa Joy, Sherine Khatoun, and Rebirth. 40+ artistic mothers performing and showcasing visual artwork by artists such as Angela Zammarelli, Loretta Kane, and Procheta Olsen. Celebrating the creativity of mothers and primary parents, this year’s inaugural MICAfest takes place at Northampton Center for the Arts at 33 Hawley from October 28-30, 2022. Plus! All proceeds from ticket sales go directly to pay artist stipends and fund future programs to support amazing mom-artists. Get your tickets now! Questions? Email hello@experiencemica.org

Pajama Night returns to Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, MA, on Friday, November 4, from 5:30-7:30pm! Authors, artists, educators, and community members share stories at this FREE National Family Literacy Month celebration. Children and their families are invited to listen as adults, and kids read aloud, go for a story walk, and choose a free book to take home. Pajama Night is sponsored by Greylock Federal Credit Union. Berkshire Museum. 413-443-7171. 39 South St, Pittsfield, MA.

Hilltown Sleddogs is home to a team of Alaskan Husky Sled Dogs in Western MA. The past three winters, they lived in Alaska, mushing the 750-mile Serum Run Expedition in 2020, 300-mile Summit Quest Race 2021, and winter camping on the Skwetna River & Denali Highway in 2022. Marla BB has stories to share at School, After School & Homeschool ProgramsDemonstrations, and Festivals! She wrote a storybook about her travels w/her team. Sign up for Vacation Day & Summer Sled Dog Camps now. Each child gets their own sled dog & each dog gets their own kid! Dog Yard Tours & Rig Rides are available Fall & Spring. Clinics on “How to Mush” are offered with your dog or theirs. Learn to Cani-cross, Bikejor, Scooter & Skijor. They do Birthday Parties too!

Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, MA, celebrates the opening of Winter Festival: Solstice Celebration! from Nov 12-Jan 8, featuring a performance by award-winning musician Paul Winter on Saturday, November 12. The concert begins at 5:30pm in the Berkshire Museum’s Little Cinema. Premium tickets include reserved theater seating in prime locations. General admission tickets include access to available theater seats upon arrival. Doors open at 5pm. Following the concert, join others in the second-floor galleries in the Winter Festival exhibits for a reception. See Santa Classics by Philadelphia-based artist Ed Wheeler and Hoots Holiday: A Solstice Tale! Reserve your tickets online at berkshiremuseum.org.

Imagine a school that values and encourages the unique qualities of your child: The Hartsbrook School provides just that, with warmth and attentiveness. Beautiful outdoor classrooms, storytelling, music, and creative problem-solving all lay the foundations for future learning and deep social connection. Children’s imagination and empathy are awakened through the rich curriculum. Walking in the woods, visiting the school’s farm animals, and tending the gardens develop an awareness of, and care for, the natural world. Begin your exploration with a tour to learn more about their early childhood program.
Preschool ♦ Ages 2.9-6yrs
For more information: admissions@hartsbrook.org; 413-586-1908 x116; www.hartsbrook.org.

Campus School of Smith College will hold an open house on Thursday, November 3, from 8:30-10:30am. At the lab school of Smith College, hands-on learning sparks intellectual engagement, research findings inform modern methods, and transformative relationships enrich masterful teaching. Campus School of Smith College is a kindergarten through sixth-grade elementary school located in the heart of Northampton, MA. Affordable tuition and financial aid are available. RSVP 413-585-3270 or call to schedule a visit. Learn more at campus-school.smith.edu.

It’s harvest season! Come to CISA’s Making Food Fun event on Saturday, November 5, 10am-12pm at Forest Park, where learning, food, and fun intersect in an event for all ages. CISA is teaming up with the Winter Farmers’ Market at Forest Park to offer fall treats at the season’s opening. Enter the park from Sumner Ave., Springfield, and follow market signs to the Bright Nights’ storage building. Personal chef & cooking instructor, Bella Foodie, will be on hand to show children how to assemble harvest ingredients into a tasty snack. Red Fire Farm will offer apple tasting, where families can use a worksheet to track data on multiple kinds of apples. There will be a station for kids to decorate & take home small pie pumpkins from Red Fire Farm.

Nikki Gardner Photography is offering a 1-day Pop-Up fundraiser event—featuring fun 15-minute Holiday Family Sessions. Think family portraits full of personality and connection photographed on a snow-white background. Check family portraits and holiday gifts off your list now. When: Saturday, November 12, 9am-4pm, 15-minute sessions Where: Anne T. Dunphy School (inside the school gym), 1 Petticoat Hill Road, Williamsburg, MA. Cost: $175 and include five digital files: A non-refundable deposit of $50 saves your session date/time, and $125 is due at the session.
To book your session, visit 
www.nikkigardnerphotography.com/holiday-family-session-pop-up, or email 
nikki@nikkigardnerphotography.com
with questions.

FEATURED SCHOOL
The Bement School
Deerfield, MA

The Bement School

The Bement School, founded in 1925 and located in Deerfield, is a day and boarding school serving 220 students in kindergarten through grade 9. Applications for fall 2023 are being accepted now. Attend an open house to learn more about the school! Contact the admission office at admit@bement.org with questions or schedule a campus tour.

FEATURED EVENTS
River Valley Co-Op
Northampton & Easthampton

The Common School

River Valley Co-op is offering a wide range of FREE community workshops and classes this Fall. Most of these will take place virtually, but they will hold a number in person at one of their locations in the Pioneer Valley. Hosted by various western MA teachers, business owners, authors, and community leaders, classes cover a range of topics such as time management, fermenting your own veggies, soil ecology, yoga, and much more! There are even workshops and classes designed specifically for families with young children – yoga for kids, pumpkin seed savings, natural dyes, and more. To see the complete list of workshops and to register, visit www.rivervalley.coop.

FEATURED COUPLES THERAPY
Couples Therapy, Inc.
Cummington, MA

Couples Therapy
Marriage Retreats: In-person & Online

We are living in historically stressful times. Unfortunately, many families and marriages have struggled to navigate these difficult times. But did you know that science-based couples therapy is 70-92% effective for most motivated couplesDaniel Dashnaw is a Marriage and Family therapist AND one of the founders of www.couplestherapyinc.com, the most extensive science-based couples therapy practice in the United States. Daniel has been a Hilltown resident for over 20 years. Couples from around the world visit his secluded sanctuary in the deep woods of Cummington to roll up their sleeves and turn their marriages around. We live in tough times. Intimacy is hard. Can science-based couples therapy help your marriage? Email Daniel at daniel@couplestherapyinc.com to learn more. 

Founded in 1975, Oak Meadow is a trusted education option for homeschooling and distance learning that supports your child and follows them wherever their heart leads. 

See Your Ad Here

Partner with HIlltown Families!

Partner with Hilltown Families in your online advertising! Delivering your message each week to over 35,000 subscribers, web visitors, and social media followers each week, Hilltown Families can bring your message to thousands of families in Western Massachusetts. Serving the region since 2005, Hilltown Families is an award-winning, online communication network, recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” A trusted partner in your online marketing! To find out how we can partner together in your online marketing and outreach, contact us for info on our affordable options and packages: swildfield@hilltownfamilies.org. Have an event, resource, or opportunity you’re ready to promote? Click HERE to submit your information.

2022 Class Directory

Class Directory

Discover virtual & adapted programming in our Class Directory for Western MA

2022 Preschool & Daycare Directory

Preschool Directory

Find what you’re looking for in our Preschool & Daycare Directory for Western MA

List of Weekly Suggested Events

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2022

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 7:30am-1:30pm. Amherst Farmers’ Market – Town Common. Amherst, MA.

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 8am-12:30pm. Greenfield Farmers’ Market – Since 1975, the Greenfield Farmers’ Market has provided fresh, locally grown produce, animal products, artisanal goods, and handcrafted items. Court Square. Greenfield, MA.

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 8am-1pm. Northampton Farmers’ Market – Gothic Street. Northampton, MA.

FAMILY RADIO: 9-10am. Hilltown Family Variety Show. WXOJ 103.3FM Northampton, MA. (Radio)

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 9am-1pm.Ashfield Farmers’ Market – Fresh produce, meat, bread, and plants on the Town Common. Ashfield, MA.

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 9am-1pm. Great Barrington Farmers’ Market – Lots of vendors. Freshly grown and produced foods, ready to eat or take home, flowers, plants, and more! 18 Church Street. Great Barrington, MA. 

CORN MAZE/ HERITAGE. 9am-5pm. Mike’s Maze at Warner Farm with activities, games, and amusements to entertain the entire family. Ride on a horse-drawn wagon, fire the mighty potato cannons, pick out your own Halloween pumpkin, and stay for lunch at the Corn Cafe, serving farm-fresh food all day. 23 South Main Street. Sunderland, MA.

🥧 FOOD HISTORY/ PIES. 9:30am-4pm. Open Hearth Cooking Demonstration: Pies – Autumn is a great time to bake pies. Seasonal ingredients like pumpkin, squash, and apples are readily available. Pies were a highlight of the season; a common dish served as part of the meal. They were savory or sweet—sometimes with surprising flavor combinations. See them baked without the convenience of a modern oven, learning about history through the lens of food at the Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA. 

🎃 HALLOWEEN. 10am-2pm. Halloween Party – Pumpkin decorating & apple tasting, Halloween candy, crafts, and games for all ages. A special treat for coming in costume! (Rain date: 10/30) Tilton Library. 413-665-4683. 75 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA. 

🎃 HALLOWEEN. 10am-3pm. Halloween at Hancock – Witches, ghosts, and goblins will roam the Hancock Shaker Village. Learn how the Shakers spent Halloween. Get spooked by ghost stories, including some tied directly to the Village! Have your fortune told and trick or treat in costume. Spirits of all ages are welcome. Hancock Shaker Village. 413-443-0188. 1843 W Housatonic St, Pittsfield, MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 10am-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

🪡 HISTORIC TRADES. 10am-4pm. Historic Trade Demonstration: Stitcher Saturday – Demonstrations in dressmaking, shoemaking, and tailoring with Henry Cooke. Takes place at the Flynt Center of Early New England Life at Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN. 10am-4pm. Spooky Safari – Dress in costume and enjoy family-friendly Halloween fun complete with a trick-or-treat trail for kids ages 12 & under and on-site activities such as crafts, a DJ, face painting, read-along, and special appearances. The Zoo in Forest Park & Education Center. 413-733-2251. 293 Sumner Ave. Springfield, MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-5pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

CORN MAZE. 10am-5pm. Get lost in a corn maze, a classic New England tradition! Hicks Family Farm. 1299 Route 2 E. Charlemont MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art – A museum devoted to the art of picture books, especially children’s books. The Carle’s picture-book exhibitions showcase various artists, themes, and styles. Their three galleries host six original shows a year, so there is always something new! In addition to exploring art in the galleries, drop into the art studio to experience the creative joy of making art; explore new picture books, and rediscover old ones in their library. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 413-559-6300. 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

🎃 LITERACY/ HALLOWEEN. 11am. Mr. Dave Herrera & Percy the Dragon – A spooky literacy event for families featuring music by Mr. Dave Herrera & Percy the Dragon. Meet at the fire pit/tent at Pine Hill Orchards. Stick around after the show to carve community pumpkins to display at the Ooky Spooky Bridge on Halloween! 248 Greenfield Rd., Colrain, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

🎃 AGRICULTURE/ CELEBRATION. 11am-5:30pm. Pumpkinfest – Whitney’s Farm Market & Garden Center. 413-442-4749. 1775 S State Rd, Cheshire, MA.

🪡 TEXTILE ARTS/ HISTORY. 12-4:30pm. Weaving Wonder: The Art and Craft of Making Cloth – Families are invited to visit Historic Deerfield’s History Workshop and have fun with weaving: use their small floor loom to learn the basic steps of making a piece of cloth or craft a bright and beautiful woven wall hanging to take home. Everyone can become a weaver! Apply your new knowledge and skills to explore woven textiles in their collection! Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

🌽 HISTORY/ AGRICULTURE. 1-4pm. History & Harvest – Learn about the history of New England’s storied harvest season. See the Clark Blacksmith, make candles and tin sconces, tour the historic gardens and decorate a gourd, and hear the history of the modern Jack-o-Lantern. Discover how children helped during this critical time and how their school year looked different. Storrowton Village Museum. 413-205-5051. 1305 Memorial Avenue, West Springfield, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 1-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

🎹 MUSIC STUDIES/ CLASSICAL PIANO. 2pm. Classical Concert: Gabriel Quenneville-Bélair – The brilliant Montreal-based pianist Gabriel Quenneville-Bélair performs a solo concert. This program of nineteenth- and twentieth-century music selected from canonical composers like Maurice Ravel, Frédéric Chopin, Franz Schubert, and Ludwig van Beethoven also features the premiere of three concert études by local composer Stephen Dankner. Clark Art Institute. 413-458-2303. 225 South St., Williamstown, MA.

🏈 SPORTS/ COLLEGE FOOTBALL. 3:30pm. UMass Football Game – McGuirk Alumni Stadium. 413-545-2439. Stadium Dr, Amherst, MA. 

ICE SKATING. 4pm. Public Ice Skate – Ice skating sessions for the public at UMass Mullins Center. Skate rentals are provided. Great opportunity to get moving on cold New England days! UMass Mullins Center. 413-545-3040. 200 Commonwealth Ave. Amherst, MA.

🎃 MUSEUM ADVENTURES/ HALLOWEEN. 4-6pm.Families with Children at the Mansion – As a special offering, families with children are invited to visit the mansion for free. The house’s first floor will be open, with a Halloween-themed scavenger hunt for kids with a prize at the end. Enjoy this extra opportunity to wear your Halloween costume and have the perfect photo opportunity to create memories for years to come! Light refreshments will be provided on the back veranda, weather permitting. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRUNK OR TREAT. 4:30-6:30pm. Trunk or Treat – Hampshire Regional YMCA. 413-584-7086. 286 Prospect St, Northampton, MA.

🚂 HALLOWEEN/ TRAIN RIDE. 5-9pm. Haunted Train Ride and Lights Display at Look Park – The ride is designed for children five and up. The first hour has the calmest rides, and the ghosts, ghouls, and zombies do not chase after the train. This time is best suited for kids who may most likely be scared. As the night progresses and it gets dark, the creatures begin to run after the train and pop out of the dark! Look Memorial Park. 413-584-5457. 300 N Main St, Florence, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ JACK-O-LANTERNS. 5:30-7:30pm. Pumpkin Walk – Stroll outside the Adams Visitor Center while enjoying an outdoor display of jack-o-lanterns and free apple cider & donuts. Adams Visitors Center. 413-743-8358. 3 Hoosac St, Adams, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRUNK OR TREAT.5:30-7:30pm. Trunk-or-Treat – Christ Community Church 413-253-0292. 1255 Federal St. Belchertown, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRUNK OR TREAT. 5:30-7pm. Downtown Lenox Businesses. Lenox, MA.

🐮 HALLOWEEN FARM PARTY. 5:30-8pm. Meet The Count & Countess Duckula at Red Gate Farm! Their annual Halloween party is the perfect event for your youngsters who want to dress up and have fun. They have a grand collection of fun and traditional games and activities set up outside around the farm and a not-so-scary animal tour. There is something for everyone, from ring toss to visiting the animals and yummy snacks. It’s a perfect evening for the whole family! Red Gate Farm. 413-625-9503. 4 Norman Road, Ashfield, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRUNK OR TREAT. 6-7:30pm. “Not So Scary’ Trunk or Treat & Haunted House – East Longmeadow Recreation Department sponsors the event at the Pleasant View Senior Center. 328 N Main St, East Longmeadow, MA.

👻 LITERACY/ HALLOWEEN. 6:30pm. Giggling Ghost Stories and Songs – Lenox Library. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA.

🎶 HALLOWEEN/ MUSIC STUDIES. 8-10pm. Monsters Ball – Mount Holyoke College’s annual Halloween dance party! This year’s theme is that of animals, both fantastical and real. On the program, they have Disney’s Lion King, Marvel’s Black Panther, and Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of Animals, including the beautiful Swan featuring a solo cello. Come dressed in your favorite costume and join in the dance.Chapin Auditorium. 413-538-2000. 50 College Street. South Hadley, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Halloween Candy/Manufacturing

Halloween candy is an excellent catalyst for learning about the history and manufacturing of candy! Families can learn why M&M’s “melt in your mouth, not in your hands,” how a candy factory supports a local economy, the history and difference between red and black licorice, and how Halloween’s most popular candy is manufactured!

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SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30, 2022

FAMILY RADIO: 7-8am. Hilltown Family Variety Show. WXOJ 103.3FM Northampton, MA. (Radio)

CORN MAZE/ HERITAGE. 9am-5pm. Mike’s Maze at Warner Farm with activities, games, and amusements to entertain the entire family. Ride on a horse-drawn wagon, fire the mighty potato cannons, pick out your own Halloween pumpkin, and stay for lunch at the Corn Cafe, serving farm-fresh food all day. 23 South Main Street. Sunderland, MA.

🪦 CEMETERY/ LIVING HISTORY. 10am. A Walking Tour of Bridge Street Cemetery – Get to know your historical neighbors in a walking tour of Bridge Street Cemetery. “Meet” past Northampton residents, including: Revolutionary War patriot Joseph Hawley; Samuel Bartlett of witchcraft accusation fame; Indigenous spinner and weaver Sally Maminash; Sylvia Church, a woman who was enslaved in Northampton; and a family who were all killed in the Mill River Flood. Along the way, examine changing artisanry and symbolism of gravestone design. Historic Northampton. 413-584-6011. 46 Bridge Street. Northampton, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

ENTOMOLOGY/ BUTTERFLIES. 10am-4:30pm. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory – An 8000 square-foot tropical conservatory with nearly 4000 free-flying tropical and native butterflies from all over the world. Learn about butterflies along with exotic reptiles, frogs, fish, birds, and insects! Ask about their guided tours. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. 413-665-2805. 281 Greenfield Road. South Deerfield, MA.

LITERATURE/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Emily Dickinson Museum – The collection at the Museum contains more than 8,000 artifacts, including family objects such as artwork, textiles, furniture, dinnerware, and other household items. Comprised of two historic houses in the center of Amherst, the Museum is associated with the poet Emily Dickinson and family members during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Through primary source material, support an interest in this local author, sparking a deeper understanding of her life and landscape. Emily Dickinson Museum. 413-542-8161. 280 Main St, Amherst, MA.

CORN MAZE. 10am-5pm. Get lost in a corn maze, a classic New England tradition! Hicks Family Farm. 1299 Route 2 E. Charlemont MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-5pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN. 11am-3pm. Boo Bash –  Join United Way of Pioneer Valley for an afternoon of family fun with live music, glitter tattoos, pumpkin decorating, food trucks, community tabling, trick or treating, and more! Local food trucks will also be on-site for food and beverage. Tower Square Park. 413-693-0238. 1477 Main Street. Springfield, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 11am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

🎃 AGRICULTURE/ CELEBRATION. 11am-5:30pm. Pumpkinfest – Whitney’s Farm Market & Garden Center. 413-442-4749. 1775 S State Rd, Cheshire, MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 12-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

🪡 TEXTILE ARTS/ HISTORY. 12-4:30pm. Weaving Wonder: The Art and Craft of Making Cloth – Families are invited to visit Historic Deerfield’s History Workshop and have fun with weaving: use their small floor loom to learn the basic steps of making a piece of cloth or craft a bright and beautiful woven wall hanging to take home. Everyone can become a weaver! Apply your new knowledge and skills to explore woven textiles in their collection! Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 12-5pm. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art – A museum devoted to the art of picture books, especially children’s books. The Carle’s picture-book exhibitions showcase various artists, themes, and styles. Their three galleries host six original shows a year, so there is always something new! In addition to exploring art in the galleries, drop into the art studio to experience the creative joy of making art; explore new picture books, and rediscover old ones in their library. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 413-559-6300. 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA.

🪡  HALLOWEEN/ FIBER ART. 1-2:30pm. Haunted Fiber Art  – In this one-day workshop, participants ages 8+ will learn how to use various felting techniques to make Halloween decorations. Artspace Community Arts Center. 413-772-6811. 15 Mill St., Greenfield, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 1-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

ART STUDIES/ GALLERY. 2-5pm. Hampshire College Art Gallery – The Hampshire College Art Gallery is a dynamic space for contemporary art and collections-based exhibitions, uniting innovative curatorial approaches with a focus on teaching and learning. Families can visit the gallery to check out traditional exhibitions, along with more interactive programs. Many objects in their small, eclectic permanent collection were donated when founders first built the college, so there are among them some quintessentially “’60s” artworks, alongside fine art photography. The gallery is located in the Harold F. Johnson Library Building, Ground Floor, on the campus of Hampshire College. 893 West Street. Amherst, MA.

🎃 MUSEUM ADVENTURES/ HALLOWEEN. 4-6pm.Families with Children at the Mansion – As a special offering, families with children are invited to visit the mansion for free. The house’s first floor will be open, with a Halloween-themed scavenger hunt for kids with a prize at the end. Enjoy this extra opportunity to wear your Halloween costume and have the perfect photo opportunity to create memories for years to come! Light refreshments will be provided on the back veranda, weather permitting. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRUNK OR TREAT. 5pm. Trunk or Treat & Rag Shag Parade – Annual Rag Shag parade kicks off with a Trunk or Treat. The Halloween Costume Parade starts at 6pm and marches to Vet’s Field where a special sweet treat awaits adults and kids alike! Vet’s Field. 1 Care Dr, Erving, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ RAG SHAG PARADE. 5-7:30pm. Rag Shag Costume Parade and Halloween Party – Costume party, face painting, music, games, and more. Ages 11 and under. Parade begins at Hopkins Academy, followed by Halloween Party at The Hadley American Legion Post 271. Hadley, MA.

🚂 HALLOWEEN/ TRAIN RIDE. 5-9pm. Haunted Train Ride and Lights Display at Look Park – The ride is designed for children five and up. The first hour has the calmest rides, and the ghosts, ghouls, and zombies do not chase after the train. This time is best suited for kids who may most likely be scared. As the night progresses and it gets dark, the creatures begin to run after the train and pop out of the dark! Look Memorial Park. 413-584-5457. 300 N Main St, Florence, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ JACK-O-LANTERNS. 5:30-7:30pm. Pumpkin Walk – Stroll outside the Adams Visitor Center while enjoying an outdoor display of jack-o-lanterns and free apple cider & donuts. Adams Visitors Center. 413-743-8358. 3 Hoosac St, Adams, MA.

🎃 TRICK-OR-TREAT. 5:30-7pm. Pittsfield Parks Recreation announces trick-or-treating in Pittsfield, MA.

🎃 TRICK-OR-TREAT. 5:30-7:30pm. Westhampton Trick or Treat – Beginning at the high school parking lot, a rag shag parade led by the fire department will kick off trick or treating for ages up to 14yo. Westhampton, MA.

👻 HALLOWEEN/ TRICK OR TREAT. 6-7:30pm. Ghost Town at Sundown – Pop-up “trick or treat” village with hayrides, storytelling, shadow play theater, and more. (Rain date: 10/31). Takes place on the Wendell Common. Wendell, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Thin Places

Among the ancient pre-Christian communities of the British Isles, there was a term for special places where the veil between our world and the other was particularly thin. These so-called “thin places” were often sites of sublime natural beauty, islands, for example, or rocky mountain peaks. These are places where the individual soul is able to slip free from the historical and the contingent and enter the stream of the undying and eternal. Writers have used many words to describe this transcendent experience. For some, thin places are sites where the individual can truly be at peace. For others, it’s where we learn important things about ourselves. One thing is for certain, everybody has their own thin places. What’s yours? A particular bookstore or art gallery? Under a specific tree by the riverside or nearby park? A mysterious moss-covered boulder deep in the forest? A specific bench on Main Street? A cafe that illuminates your senses? The ways that these places work upon us are genuinely mysterious. We may never know why a particular place profoundly moves us.

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MONDAY, OCTOBER 31, 2022

PLAYGROUP. Northampton Parents Center.

PLAYGROUPS. Family Centers & Playgroups in Hilltowns & Pioneer Valley   

PLAYGROUPS. Family Center & Playgroups in Franklin County   

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in south Berkshire County   

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in north Berkshire County 

BOTANY. 9am-4pm. There is much to see at the Smith College Botanic Garden. You can spend many hours exploring the Lyman Plant House exhibitions, the Lyman Conservatory plant collections, the Campus Arboretum, and Campus Gardens. The Botanic Garden of Smith College. 413-585-2740. 16 College Lane. Northampton MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ LIBRARY PARADE. 10am. Halloween Parade – Beginning in the Children’s Library, children 6 and under will trick-or-treat throughout the library, ending with a craft. Berkshire Athenaeum. 1 Wendell Ave, Pittsfield, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10-11am. For ages 0-5 at the Meekins Library. Call to register: 413-345-6015. 2 Williams St, Williamsburg, MA. 

PLAYGROUP. 10am. Pick-up playgroup at the Dow Pavillion playground. Great for kids ages 2-5 to meet up with other families and to make new friends. Look Memorial Park. 413-584-5457. 300 N Main St, Florence, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

ART STUDIES/ GALLERY. 10:30am-4:30pm. Hampshire College Art Gallery – The Hampshire College Art Gallery is a dynamic space for contemporary art and collections-based exhibitions, uniting innovative curatorial approaches with a focus on teaching and learning. Families can visit the gallery to check out traditional exhibitions, along with more interactive programs. Many objects in their small, eclectic permanent collection were donated when founders first built the college, so there are among them some quintessentially “’60s” artworks, alongside fine art photography. The gallery is located in the Harold F. Johnson Library Building, Ground Floor, on the campus of Hampshire College. 893 West Street. Amherst, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ DANCE PARTY. 11am. Monster Mash and Music with Tom Knight – Celebrate Halloween with Tom Knight. Dance, sing, and have a lot of fun. Children/adults are welcome to wear costumes. SHFC will be open from 9:30-11am for open play. Music class from 11-11:30am.South Hadley Family Center. 413-283-7594. 7 Woodbridge St, South Hadley, MA. 

🎃 TRICK-OR-TREAT. 3-6pm. Downtown Trick or Treat – Join the Downtown Northampton Association for their annual Downtown Trick-or-Treat. Bring your best costumes, your little ones, and a trick-or-treat bag, and look for orange or teal posters in shop windows to indicate participating merchants! (*orange = candy; teal = allergy-friendly treats*) Downtown Northampton, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN. 4-6:30pm. Halloween in Downtown Greenfield – Celebrate Halloween in Downtown Greenfield with Trick or Treating at downtown businesses, a free showing of It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown at Garden Cinema, Rag Shag Parade, and Costume Contest. Downtown Greenfield, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ TRICK OR TREAT. 4-9pm. Annual Pumpkin Patch Trick-or-Treat Village – All are welcome to ‘The Patch,’ a little island neighborhood nestled between the canal and the Connecticut River. They are a family-oriented community, and they’re going all out to make this Halloween extra special! They are transforming their neighborhood into a Halloween-themed Village, with almost every home participating in the handing out of candy! Plus, local businesses will participate by passing out candy from their decorated shanties. There will also be live music, a kids’ activities tent, arts & crafts vendors, live performers, food, and an Enchanted Forest Walk. The Patch, G Street  Turners Falls, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ RAG SHAG PARADE. 5pm. Annual Rag Shag Parade in Florence on Halloween Night – Costume contest & goody bags. The parade steps off at Trinity Row Park at 6pm and heads towards Florence Civic Center. Florence, MA.

🎃 HALLOWEEN/ RAG SHAG PARADE. 6pm. Annual parade in Shelburne Falls, begins at The Blue Rock Restaurant. 1 Ashfield St, Shelburne Falls, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Halloween-Based Learning

Halloween, like most celebrations, holds an abundance of learning opportunities for the curious-minded. Self-directed learners can explore the history of Halloween through the tradition of trick-or-treating and by learning about local haunted places. Interests in arts and crafts can guide learning by making Halloween pinatas, origami ghosts, and even costume design. Halloween also offers a learning lens through community service, hands-on science, language arts, food science, culinary arts, mythology, osteology, and so much more! Let this “spooky” celebration grab your curiosity and lead your learning this season!

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TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2022

PLAYGROUPS. Family Centers & Playgroups in Hilltowns & Pioneer Valley

PLAYGROUP. Northampton Parents Center 

PLAYGROUPS. Family Center & Playgroups in Franklin County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in south Berkshire County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in north Berkshire County

BOTANY. 9am-4pm. There is much to see at the Smith College Botanic Garden. You can spend many hours exploring the Lyman Plant House exhibitions, the Lyman Conservatory plant collections, the Campus Arboretum, and Campus Gardens. The Botanic Garden of Smith College. 413-585-2740. 16 College Lane. Northampton MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 9am-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 9:30-11:30am. School-readiness program for ages 3-4yo + caregiver. Engagement with young children is modeled through songs, books, circle time, literacy activities, StoryWalks, crafts, STEM activities, free play, cooperative games, take-home activities, and outdoor play. Hilltown Family Center. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA

PLAYGROUP. 10am Pick-up playgroup at Kendrick Park. Great for kids ages 2-5 to meet up with other families and to make new friends. Kendrick Park. E Pleasant St, Amherst, MA. 

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-3pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-4pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

ENTOMOLOGY/ BUTTERFLIES. 10am-4:30pm. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory – An 8000 square-foot tropical conservatory with nearly 4000 free-flying tropical and native butterflies from all over the world. Learn about butterflies along with exotic reptiles, frogs, fish, birds, and insects! Ask about their guided tours. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. 413-665-2805. 281 Greenfield Road. South Deerfield, MA.

LITERATURE/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Emily Dickinson Museum – The collection at the Museum contains more than 8,000 artifacts, including family objects such as artwork, textiles, furniture, dinnerware, and other household items. Comprised of two historic houses in the center of Amherst, the Museum is associated with the poet Emily Dickinson and family members during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Through primary source material, support an interest in this local author, sparking a deeper understanding of her life and landscape. Emily Dickinson Museum. 413-542-8161. 280 Main St, Amherst, MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10:30am. For ages 0-5 at the Edwards Public Library. Call to register: 413-345-6015. 30 East Street, Southampton, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 11am-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

STE(A)M/ PreK. 1pm. Pre-School STEAM Program. Learn how to inspire your kids to engineer, create, design, explore, and build at home. Becket Athenaeum. 413-623-5483. 3367 Main St, Becket, MA.

LOCAL FOOD/ AGRICULTURE. 1:30-6:30pm. Grow Food Northampton Tuesday Market – Held behind Thorne’s Marketplace, next to the parking garage. 99 Armory Street. Northampton, MA. 

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Day of the Dead

Diá de los Muertos is rich in history and traditions and can inspire learning through traditional celebrations and the making of alters that honor ancestry! Food traditions, including sugar skulls and Pan de Muerto (bread), can support an interest in confection arts and pastry arts. An interest in arts and crafts is supported by learning how to make paper marigolds, costumes, and make-up artistry.

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WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2022

PLAYGROUPS. Family Centers & Playgroups in Hilltowns & Pioneer Valley

PLAYGROUP. Northampton Parents Center  

PLAYGROUPSSouth Berkshire County. 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in north Berkshire County.

PLAYGROUP. 10-11am. For ages 0-5 at St. Philip’s Church Parish Hall. Call to register: 413-345-6015. 126 Main St., Easthampton, MA.

BOTANY. 9am-4pm. There is much to see at the Smith College Botanic Garden. You can spend many hours exploring the Lyman Plant House exhibitions, the Lyman Conservatory plant collections, the Campus Arboretum, and Campus Gardens. The Botanic Garden of Smith College. 413-585-2740. 16 College Lane. Northampton MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 9am-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

NEW ENGLAND HISTORY. 9:30am-4:30pm. Historic Deerfield – Founded in 1952, Historic Deerfield is an outdoor museum that interprets the history and culture of early New England and the Connecticut River Valley. Visitors can tour twelve carefully-preserved antique houses dating from 1730 to 1850 and explore world-class collections of regional furniture, silver, textiles, and other decorative arts on display in the authentic period houses; as well as the Flynt Center of Early New England Life, a state-of-the-art museum facility featuring exhibitions and a visible storage area. Support interests in history through the lens of architecture, New England antiques, arts and crafts needlework, ironware and basketry, cooking and baking, gardening, textiles, fashion, furniture, and much more! Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10am. Pick-up playgroup at Stanley Park’s sandbox area. Make not only sandcastles but also new friends at this weekly self-directed playgroup. Stanley Park. 413-568-9312. 400 Western Ave, Westfield, MA. 

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art – A museum devoted to the art of picture books, especially children’s books. The Carle’s picture-book exhibitions showcase various artists, themes, and styles. Their three galleries host six original shows a year, so there is always something new! In addition to exploring art in the galleries, drop into the art studio to experience the creative joy of making art; explore new picture books, and rediscover old ones in their library. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 413-559-6300. 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-4pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

ENTOMOLOGY/ BUTTERFLIES. 10am-4:30pm. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory – An 8000 square-foot tropical conservatory with nearly 4000 free-flying tropical and native butterflies from all over the world. Learn about butterflies along with exotic reptiles, frogs, fish, birds, and insects! Ask about their guided tours. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. 413-665-2805. 281 Greenfield Road. South Deerfield, MA.

LITERATURE/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Emily Dickinson Museum – The collection at the Museum contains more than 8,000 artifacts, including family objects such as artwork, textiles, furniture, dinnerware, and other household items. Comprised of two historic houses in the center of Amherst, the Museum is associated with the poet Emily Dickinson and family members during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Through primary source material, support an interest in this local author, sparking a deeper understanding of her life and landscape. Emily Dickinson Museum. 413-542-8161. 280 Main St, Amherst, MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

NEW PARENT GROUP. 10:30am & 1pm. Beyond Birth groups meet weekly. New babies birth-6mos are at 1pm and older babies 6mos-1 yr are at 10:30am. Amherst, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 11am-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 3:30-4:30pm. For ages 0-5 at Goshen Town Hall. Call to register: 413-345-6015. 42 Main St., Goshen, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Candy Chemistry

Use Halloween candy for mad science experiments in your home kitchen! Families can use Skittles to examine density, M&M’s are great for chromatography experiments, certain Lifesavers include a chemical combination that can produce sparks. Families can use a variety of other candies to explore scientific topics like density, melting points, and states of matter. The website Candy Experiments offers directions for lots of easy experiments, and kids can invent some of their own, too!

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THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2022

Campus School of Smith College will hold an open house on Thursday, November 3, from 8:30-10:30am. At the lab school of Smith College, hands-on learning sparks intellectual engagement, research findings inform modern methods, and transformative relationships enrich masterful teaching. Campus School of Smith College is a kindergarten through sixth-grade elementary school located in the heart of Northampton, MA. Affordable tuition and financial aid are available. RSVP 413-585-3270 or call to schedule a visit. Learn more at campus-school.smith.edu.

PLAYGROUPS. Family Centers & Playgroups in Hilltowns & Pioneer Valley

PLAYGROUP. Northampton Parents Center  

PLAYGROUPS. Family Center & Playgroups in Franklin County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in south Berkshire County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in north Berkshire County 

BOTANY. 9am-4pm. There is much to see at the Smith College Botanic Garden. You can spend many hours exploring the Lyman Plant House exhibitions, the Lyman Conservatory plant collections, the Campus Arboretum, and Campus Gardens. The Botanic Garden of Smith College. 413-585-2740. 16 College Lane. Northampton MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 9am-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

NEW ENGLAND HISTORY. 9:30am-4:30pm. Historic Deerfield – Founded in 1952, Historic Deerfield is an outdoor museum that interprets the history and culture of early New England and the Connecticut River Valley. Visitors can tour twelve carefully-preserved antique houses dating from 1730 to 1850 and explore world-class collections of regional furniture, silver, textiles, and other decorative arts on display in the authentic period houses; as well as the Flynt Center of Early New England Life, a state-of-the-art museum facility featuring exhibitions and a visible storage area. Support interests in history through the lens of architecture, New England antiques, arts and crafts needlework, ironware and basketry, cooking and baking, gardening, textiles, fashion, furniture, and much more! Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10am. For ages 0-5 at St. Philip’s Church Parish Hall. Call to register: 413-345-6015. 126 Main St., Easthampton, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10am Pick-up playgroup at Kendrick Park. Great for kids ages 2-5 to meet up with other families and to make new friends. Kendrick Park. E Pleasant St, Amherst, MA. 

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-4pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art – A museum devoted to the art of picture books, especially children’s books. The Carle’s picture-book exhibitions showcase various artists, themes, and styles. Their three galleries host six original shows a year, so there is always something new! In addition to exploring art in the galleries, drop into the art studio to experience the creative joy of making art; explore new picture books, and rediscover old ones in their library. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 413-559-6300. 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA.

ENTOMOLOGY/ BUTTERFLIES. 10am-4:30pm. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory – An 8000 square-foot tropical conservatory with nearly 4000 free-flying tropical and native butterflies from all over the world. Learn about butterflies along with exotic reptiles, frogs, fish, birds, and insects! Ask about their guided tours. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. 413-665-2805. 281 Greenfield Road. South Deerfield, MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

LITERATURE/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Emily Dickinson Museum – The collection at the Museum contains more than 8,000 artifacts, including family objects such as artwork, textiles, furniture, dinnerware, and other household items. Comprised of two historic houses in the center of Amherst, the Museum is associated with the poet Emily Dickinson and family members during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Through primary source material, support an interest in this local author, sparking a deeper understanding of her life and landscape. Emily Dickinson Museum. 413-542-8161. 280 Main St, Amherst, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA. 

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

NEW PARENT GROUP. 10:30am & 1pm. Beyond Birth groups meet weekly in both Northampton (Thurs) and Amherst (Wed)! New babies birth-6 mos are at 1pm and older babies 6 mos to 1 year are at 10:30am. Northampton & Amherst, MA.  

ARTS & CRAFTS. 11am & 2pm. Crafts at Amelia Park Children’s Museum. 413-572-4014. 29 S Broad St, Westfield, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 11am-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

ROLLER SKATING. 7-9:30pm. Interskate 91. 413-586-8344. 367 Russell Street, Hampshire Mall, Hadley, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Apple & Pumpkin Butters

November is the time of year for the slow rendering of both apple butter and pumpkin butter in your home kitchen. Gathering locally grown apples and pumpkins from nearby orchards, farm stores, and co-ops, lessons in the kitchen await self-directed learners! Discover the history of apple butter, how to make pumpkin butter, and the difference between apple pie and pumpkin pie spices. Get curious and research where these spices are naturally grown, their history and impact of culture, and other foods made to taste better with their introduction to different recipes.

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FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2022

PLAYGROUPS. Family Centers & Playgroups in Hilltowns & Pioneer Valley 

PLAYGROUPS. Family Center & Playgroups in Franklin County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in south Berkshire County 

PLAYGROUPSFamily Center & Playgroups in north Berkshire County

BOTANY. 9am-4pm. There is much to see at the Smith College Botanic Garden. You can spend many hours exploring the Lyman Plant House exhibitions, the Lyman Conservatory plant collections, the Campus Arboretum, and Campus Gardens. The Botanic Garden of Smith College. 413-585-2740. 16 College Lane. Northampton MA.

CREATIVE FREE-PLAY/ INTERACTIVE MUSEUM. 9am-4pm.  The Children’s Museum – Dedicated to enhancing children’s educational and cultural awareness through the arts, sciences, and the world around them. The Museum’s participatory exhibits and educational programming invite children and adults to interact and enjoy learning and self-discovery while at play. Young children almost always want to start on the Curvy Climber. And then, throughout the Museum, there are several other activities that older children might spend more time with, including the Legos Table, The Magna Tile Table, Maxi Rollways, and the Imagination Playground. There is also a state-of-the-art World of Motion room that stimulates children and adults’ curious minds. This room is STEM-based and encourages learning and play. Discover more at The Children’s Museum at Holyoke. 413-536-7048. 444 Dwight St, Holyoke, MA.

NEW ENGLAND HISTORY. 9:30am-4:30pm. Historic Deerfield – Founded in 1952, Historic Deerfield is an outdoor museum that interprets the history and culture of early New England and the Connecticut River Valley. Visitors can tour twelve carefully-preserved antique houses dating from 1730 to 1850 and explore world-class collections of regional furniture, silver, textiles, and other decorative arts on display in the authentic period houses; as well as the Flynt Center of Early New England Life, a state-of-the-art museum facility featuring exhibitions and a visible storage area. Support interests in history through the lens of architecture, New England antiques, arts and crafts needlework, ironware and basketry, cooking and baking, gardening, textiles, fashion, furniture, and much more! Historic Deerfield. 413-774-5581. 84 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA.

PLAYGROUP. 10am. Pick-up playgroup at Stanley Park’s sandbox area. Make not only sandcastles but also new friends at this weekly self-directed playgroup. Stanley Park. 413-568-9312. 400 Western Ave, Westfield, MA. 

FIBER ARTS/KNITTING. 10am. Knitting Club at Old Creamery Co-op. 413-634-5560. 445 Berkshire Trail, Cummington, MA.

MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum –  Ventfort Hall is an imposing Jacobean Revival-style mansion built in 1893 for Sarah Morgan, the sister of J. P. Morgan. It was one of the approximately seventy-five so-called “Cottages” built in Lenox in the late 19th century when the village became a popular Gilded Age resort. The museum can support interests in history and architecture, photography, film, art, and botany. Photography and film students can test their skills in the house, finding interesting areas to photograph. Art students are welcome to find a spot they enjoy and sketch, paint, and/or interpret the site as it fits their interests and studies. History classes may compare and contrast the architectural elements of Ventfort Hall with observations in their community. Botany students can investigate and identify trees and plants on the property that are of the era. And much more! Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA.

JEWISH CULTURE/ HISTORY. 10am-4pm. Yiddish Book Center – Learning about Jewish culture and history often leads parents and children to conversations about their family’s history, culture, and traditions. Part of The Center’s mission is to offer engaging learning opportunities for curious visitors of all ages who come to the expansive, sunny museum designed to resemble a shtetl (Eastern European Jewish small town), which sits in an apple orchard adjacent to the Hampshire College campus. Visitors don’t need to be able to read or speak Yiddish to enjoy the Center—although, by the visit’s end, they’ll realize they probably knew more Yiddish words than they thought (noshschmooze, and shlep are all Yiddish words commonly used in English), and leave knowing even more. Yiddish Book Center. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

NATURAL HISTORY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: 10am-4pm. The Beneski Museum of Natural History – One of New England’s largest natural history museums, featuring three floors of exhibits with more than 1,700 specimens on display. Step inside the museum, and you’ll find: Dramatic displays of fossil skeletons, from fish to dinosaurs to Ice Age megafauna, an extraordinary collection of local dinosaur footprints, geological specimens and immersive exhibits that tell the history of the local landscape through geologic time, including when dinosaurs inhabited the area, and dazzling mineral specimens from around the world and meteorites from beyond Earth. Beneski Museum of Natural History. 413-542-2165. Amherst College. 11 Barrett Hill Dr, Amherst, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-4pm. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art – A museum devoted to the art of picture books, especially children’s books. The Carle’s picture-book exhibitions showcase various artists, themes, and styles. Their three galleries host six original shows a year, so there is always something new! In addition to exploring art in the galleries, drop into the art studio to experience the creative joy of making art; explore new picture books, and rediscover old ones in their library. The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. 413-559-6300. 125 W Bay Rd, Amherst, MA.

ENTOMOLOGY/ BUTTERFLIES. 10am-4:30pm. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory – An 8000 square-foot tropical conservatory with nearly 4000 free-flying tropical and native butterflies from all over the world. Learn about butterflies along with exotic reptiles, frogs, fish, birds, and insects! Ask about their guided tours. Magic Wings Butterfly Conservatory. 413-665-2805. 281 Greenfield Road. South Deerfield, MA.

MUSEUMS ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. Springfield Museums – The Springfield Museums uses art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss to explore our shared connections and unique perspectives to promote engagement, literacy, and learning. Located in the heart of downtown Springfield, the Springfield Museums offer access to five world-class museums, including the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum and the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden, all under a single admission. The museums are community-based educational resources that can support interests and education in art studies, natural history, STEM, astronomy, zoology, geology, paleontology, ecology, history, and, of course, Dr. Seuss. Springfield Museums. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA.

LITERATURE/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-5pm. The Emily Dickinson Museum – The collection at the Museum contains more than 8,000 artifacts, including family objects such as artwork, textiles, furniture, dinnerware, and other household items. Comprised of two historic houses in the center of Amherst, the Museum is associated with the poet Emily Dickinson and family members during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Through primary source material, support an interest in this local author, sparking a deeper understanding of her life and landscape. Emily Dickinson Museum. 413-542-8161. 280 Main St, Amherst, MA.

AGRICULTURE/ SCULPTURE. 10am-6pm. Art in the Orchard – Easthampton is home to “Art in the Orchard,” an orchard-based gallery of outdoor sculptures and installation art to peruse with family. Bringing “Culture into Horticulture,” the orchard features the work of artists whose work is brought to life amongst the apple trees and changing landscape as we move from summer to fall. The trail is an excellent destination for a family visit. Walking in the good air, high-minded sculpture, exceptional views, pick-your-own apples. Many people make an afternoon of it, bringing a picnic basket and lounging among the trees. Park Hill Orchard. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 10am-6pm. The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) – One of the world’s liveliest centers for making and enjoying today’s most evocative art. With vast galleries and a stunning collection of indoor and outdoor performing arts venues, MASS MoCA embraces all forms of art: music, sculpture, dance, film, painting, photography, theater, and new, boundary-crossing works of art that defy easy classification. MASS MoCA offers various participatory learning opportunities, including hands-on art-making classes and docent-guided tours. A must-visit for families is Kidspace, a child-centered art gallery and hands-on studio that offers in-depth art education. Visit the ArtBar, a hands-on studio space in Kidspace, to make art or take a project home with you. MASS MoCA. 413-662-2111.1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams, MA.

🎶 MUSIC CLASS. 10:30am. Caregiver & Child Music Class at the Meekins Library. 413-268-7472. 2 Williams St, Williamsburg, MA.

ART STUDIES. 11am-4pm. Smith College Museum of Art (SCMA) – SCMA is recognized as a leading academic museum. Their collection comprises 27,000+ objects, representing the diversity of art and material culture across periods and geographies. Visitors can discover artworks from across periods and geographies in their permanent collection galleries and temporary exhibitions, engaging people with first-hand experiences of art, artists, and museum practice. The museum’s collection ranges from ancient Greek vases to contemporary video art. The works in their permanent collection galleries are regularly rotated, so there’s something new to see each time you visit. Special exhibitions highlight a dynamic range of artworks and artists. Smith College Museum of Art. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace. Northampton, MA.

CORN MAZE/ HERITAGE. 11am-5pm. Mike’s Maze at Warner Farm with activities, games, and amusements to entertain the entire family. Ride on a horse-drawn wagon, fire the mighty potato cannons, pick out your own Halloween pumpkin, and stay for lunch at the Corn Cafe, serving farm-fresh food all day. 23 South Main Street. Sunderland, MA.

ART STUDIES/ MUSEUM ADVENTURES. 11am-5pm. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum – Located on the Mount Holyoke College campus, this Museum is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country, dedicated to providing firsthand experience with works of significant aesthetic and cultural value. The Museum offers pre- and post-visit educational materials designed for kids of all ages to maximize their learning potential while exploring the galleries and connecting art with their personal experiences, including walking and activity guides and educator resources. Mount Holyoke College Art Museum. 413-538-2245. 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA.

GRANDPARENTING SUPPORT. 1pm. Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Tea Time, every 1st & 3rd Friday of the month, with Community Action’s Family Center. 413-475-1555. 90 Federal Street, Greenfield, MA.

MUSIC STUDIES/ DRUMMING. 6:45pm. The Hilltown Intergenerational Drum Circle – All ages and beginners are welcome to this biweekly drum circle, led by Rosie Fanale. Call to confirm before heading over. Shelburne Senior Center. 413-625-8470. Shelburne Falls, MA.

🌿 NATIVE AMERICAN MEDICINE. 7:30pm. “Walk With the Indian Doctress: Restorative Approaches to Interpreting Native American Medicine” with Margaret M. Bruchac – In this talk, Bruchac will discuss her research on Native medicine. In the 19th century New England, many Indigenous people worked as “Indian Doctors,” treating their Native and non-Native neighbors alike. Residents of Indian Hollow, Massachusetts, turned to Indian Doctress Rhoda Rhoades (Mohican), who “had a good knowledge of roots and herbs and their medicinal properties, and a good degree of skill in the use of them.” Deerfield residents consulted with Indian Doctor Louis Watso (Abenaki), who utilized such plants as wild ginger, which is “useful in the low stages of fevers, nervous affections, and palpitations.” These healers practiced what we would recognize today as herbalism, chiropractic, physiotherapy, and even spiritual healing. But over time, as New Englanders moved increasingly towards modern medicine, these gifted Indigenous healers were forgotten and their knowledge exploited by patent medicine makers. Bruchac will also discuss the restorative research approach deployed in her living history performances in the character of “Molly Geet, the Indian Doctress,” at Old Sturbridge Village museum. Carroll Room at the Smith College Campus Center. Smith College. Northampton, MA.

🎶 PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT/ MUSIC STUDIES. 8pm. Squirrel Nut Zippers and The Dirty Dozen Brass Band – Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center. 413-528-0100. 14 Castle St. Great Barrington, MA.

MORE EVENTS: Discover more events on Hilltown Families’ Facebook page.

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Self-Directed Learning: Cave Art

Thirty thousand years ago, during the Aurignacian period, early modern human beings in Europe experienced a period of rapid cultural growth. The earliest known examples of cave art were created around this time, as well as the oldest discovered musical instrument. Moreover, some of the examples of cave art suggest the first evidence of religion. There is no finer site for Aurignacian art and culture than the Chauvet cave in southern France. The walls of this ancient cave are covered with detailed drawings of horses, mammoths, lions, bears, and hyenas, made in black and red ochre. Most intriguing by far is the strange and mysterious image of a woman with the head of a buffalo. Surrounded by peculiar markings and unidentified bird-like creatures, this haunting image has led archeologists to speculate that this was an important ritual site.

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Online and in-person events and resources shared above are done so as a courtesy and not as an endorsement. While we do our best to share accurate and up-to-date information, please take the time to confirm information, age appropriateness, registration requirements, safety protocols, and associated costs.

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Hilltown Families’ list of Suggested Events is supported in part by grants from the Agawam, Amherst, Becket, Bernardston, Buckland, Chester, Chicopee, Colrain, Cummington, Easthampton, Goshen, Granby, Greenfield, Hadley, Hatfield, Heath, Hinsdale/Peru, Huntington, Leyden, Montgomery, Mount Washington, Northern Berkshire, Orange, Otis, Palmer, Pelham, Rowe, Shelburne, Shutesbury, South Hadley, Tolland, Tyringham, Westhampton, Windsor, and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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