Many family-friendly New Year’s celebrations offer a range of opportunities to not only celebrate, but also to explore by inviting families to visit many locations or landmarks in their local communities. These celebrations includes performances, art shows, hands-on activities, ceremonies and sometimes food! Such events encourage Western Massachusetts residents to engage their local community and experience it from new perspectives. The exploratory aspect of such events provides a place-based element to the cultural learning that New Year’s celebrations foster. Participants can solidify their sense of place as they learn about and become a part of a local culture, tradition and heritage. Moving through the local landscape offers insight and understanding of home, place and the meaning of local identity and culture.
The New Year is often seen as a moment of reflection and intention-setting. While on your first hike, consider taking your journal with you. Nature can be inspiring and provides a place for contemplation and meditation. A few writing prompts to help you get started:
What is a new skill you would like to learn this year?
Describe one of your favorite memories from last year.
Make a list of the favorite places you visited in your community last year.
Make a list of places you would like to explore further this year.
What is a new skill that you learned last year?