Hilltown Families


Each year, Earth Day takes place on April 22nd. Known as the birth of the modern environmental movement, Earth Day was first celebrated in 1970 and continues as a way to demonstrate support for environmental protection. Western Massachusetts is host to many secular celebrations, and festivals that honor the commitment to sustainable and resilient living, giving the community many ways to come together to engage on Earth Day through service-based learning opportunities, eco-workshops, and local gatherings. Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for upcoming events that support sustainable living and connection to place. And since National Poetry Month and Earth Day share the same season and month, it seems appropriate to feature Ecopoetry, a movement of poetry with a strong environmental ethic that acknowledges the relationship between humans and nature.

6 Community Resources and Annual Events for Sustainable Living

Held for the first time this year, the Earth Day River Festival encourages communities to rally around the Housatonic! Including opportunities to explore, learn, and care for the environment, the event celebrates all that the Housatonic offers to the Berkshires and encourages responsible, conservation-minded treatment of the local environment.

The Amherst Farmers’ Market and Sustainability Festival takes place this Saturday, April 26th, on the Town Common. Pick up your starter plants and locally grown foods from the Market, and then head to the Common for a fabulous family-friendly festival featuring all things sustainable… including Hilltown Families! Stop by our tent where kids can plant seeds to take home with them while parents can learn about the mission of Hilltown Families.

Unidentified keys, trophies from the early 80’s & broken crayons… these three things can clutter up your junk drawer, attics and art supplies. Here are three unique recycling programs that recycle all three of these items for good causes. Gather items together with your kids, ask your neighbors if they have any to contribute too, then package up and ship off. These teaching moments can spark conversations with your kids about the importance of recycling and helping others.

Our list of Weekly Suggested Events is up, your go-to resource for educational, community building and cultural events happening throughout western Massachusetts! Check our comprehensive list of events for Easter, Earth Day and April Vacation Week…

Earth Day to Volunteer Week. Beaver Ponds to Raising Chickens. Wild Flower Walks to Textile Drives… These are just a few of the learning highlights we’re featuring this week! Get out into your community and learn while you play! And be sure to check our list of supporting book titles to supplement the learning on the different topics highlighted each week. Purchase them for your family library, or check them out from… Read More

Reuse & Recycling Rally Offers 3 Ways to Practice the 3 R’s! The Northampton Department of Public Works is sponsoring another reuse & recycling rally on Saturday, April 20th, 2013 at the Smith Vocational High School from 9am-12pm, in cooperation with the City’s ReUse Committee, the Salvation Army & ProShred of Wilbraham.  This is the third in a series of events in 2013 to promote waste reduction, reuse and recycling of unusual… Read More

Park Clean Ups & Community Service Activities for Families this Spring in Western MA As spring warms the landscape across western Massachusetts, opportunities for outdoor adventures increase exponentially. What would have been a snowshoe trek and bark inspection a month ago has become a woods hike where families can identify plants, trees, and wildlife of all shapes and sizes. However, as the ground awakes from its snow-covered slumber, trails and parks are… Read More

Earth Day Weekend 2012 Earth Day is this weekend and there are several ways families can be eco and community minded this weekend and next. COMMUNITY SERVICE Volunteering in their community can help kids learn to appreciate the resources available to them, and spring clean-ups are a great way to get involved. Here are five community service clean-ups which families can take part in: In Plainfield the Historical Society will be planting… Read More

Discover fun and educational events happening this week in Western Mass, along with announcements, upcoming events, links, resources and the HFVS podcast. SUGGEST AN EVENT If you have a family friendly event or educational program happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, post your event on our “Suggest An Event” page. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening,… Read More

Textile Drives for Earth Week in the Berkshires & Pioneer Valley What does your family do with outgrown clothes when they’ve already been handed down as many times as possible?  How about participating in a textile drive! Center for EcoTechnology will be partnering with Goodwill in Pittsfield on Saturday, April 14th for a textile donation drive! Families can also bring documents for shredding, courtesy of Valley Green Shredding, and donate computer and… Read More

Amherst Sustainability Festival on the Town Common Saturday, April 21st, 2012 Stephanie Ciccarello, Amherst Sustainability Festival Coordinator, writes: The 3rd Annual Amherst Sustainability Festival is being held on Saturday, April 21st from 10am-4pm on the Amherst Town Common.  There’s something for everyone!  Learn how you can save money via energy efficiency in your home and/or business, learn about tree care, participate in an Eco-Hero scavenger hunt and see live entertainment, hula hoops,… Read More

Discover fun and educational events happening this week in Western Mass, along with announcements, upcoming events, links, resources and the HFVS podcast. SUGGEST AN EVENT If you have a family friendly event or educational program happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, post your event on our “Suggest An Event” page. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening,… Read More

Earth Day Eco-Tips from Western MA Families “Egg cartons make great seed starters! Windows sills are wonderful places to grow the tiny seeds! Kids love to watch life happen inside and outside their world!” – Elizabeth Jensen (Leeds, MA) “Toilet paper rolls become trumpets in our house.” – Jessica Morris (Northampton, MA) “My daughter Kacia, age 8, is fanatical about litter. We recently went to the Energy Park clean up and Kacia… Read More

Northampton Public Schools Join Together to Make a Giant Earth Day Ball! Charlotte Causton on Northampton, MA writes: All Northampton Public Schools will work together in April to make the largest ball ever made entirely of single-use plastic shopping bags. The event will culminate on April 23rd at Northampton’s Earth Day celebration in Pulaski Park when the ball will be rolled down the streets of Northampton and into the park. In a… Read More

Three Great Media Giveaways In Honor of Earth Day This year commemorates the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day, and Western Mass is filled with events that raise awareness and honor the planet.  In celebration of Earth Day’s 40th Birthday, here on Hilltown Families we have a fantastic media collection to giveaway to one very lucky family.  Deadline to enter to win is Wednesday, 04/28/10 @ 7pm. Details below. Here’s what being offered… Read More

40th Anniversary of Earth Day April 22nd, 2010 marks the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day. This month we have many opportunities to work towards building a healthy community as local organizations, community members, museums, and schools all over Western Massachusetts are offering up ways to participate and join together to create a clean environment and sustainable economy.  Movies are being screened and songs are being sung; classes on gardening and sustainability are… Read More

Marketing Earth Day (and Other Stuff) to Children By Susan Linn and Josh Golin Have you done your Earth Day shopping yet? Between greeting cards, jewelry, mugs, and teddy bears commemorating the day, its roots in environmental activism have all but been forgotten. Now corporations use Earth Day to sell us on the belief that we can buy our way into ecological sustainability. We can’t. Reducing consumption is essential to preserving the… Read More

EARTH DAY Earth Day is this Wednesday.  Included below are events happening on and for Earth Day for families.  Check out the side bar for links to on-line resources for Earth Day too. EVENTS FOR SCHOOL VACATION. ETC. This week’s list of suggested events will include the weekends of April 18th/19th and April 25th/26th, along with event links for Earth Day.  Be sure to check out our  “Suggest an Event” page for… Read More

Brittni Reilly of Amherst, MA writes: This year, UMass Amherst is hoping to join together the larger Pioneer Valley Community to celebrate Earth Day (April 22nd, 2009) with festivities, workshops, information sessions, a keynote speaker, and community building. We are hoping to recruit people engaged in progressive, environmentally responsible projects working towards the greater goal of sustainability in the Pioneer Valley. We are having a preliminary meeting this Friday  (March 27th, 2009)… Read More

Earth Day on BrainPop Earth Day falls on April 22 this year, but BrainPop is celebrating our home planet all month with a free mini-site showcasing movies about the environment and environmental issues. Featured movies cover everything from global warming, pollution and fossil fuels to natural resources, the atmosphere and recycling.

Listen to Podcast: Earth Day 2007 Episode Hilltown Family Variety Show WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM Northampton, MA Tuesdays at 7pm April 17th, 2007 New Podcasts ♦ Archived Podcasts ♦ Subscribe to Podcast Radio ♦ Facebook ♦ Twitter Playlist Pete Seeger – “Oh Sacred World” Dave Carter & Tracy Grammer – “Gentle Arms of Eden” Malvina Reynolds – “Little Boxes” Dr. Seuss – “The Lorax” Pete Seeger – “50/50 Chance” Pete Seeger – “One… Read More

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