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Remembering the “lost towns,” villages and hamlets that gave way to the Quabbin Reservoir, a new exhibit allows us to imagine what the daily lives of people in these towns were like. It’s a great reflection on the power of connection in a community that turns up in the names given to villages and town. The very poignant exhibit: “What’s in a Name? Villages, Hamlets and Hollows of the Swift River Valley,” opens at the Great Falls Discovery Center on Feb 7th, offering primary source images that explores local history.

If you look closely at our local landscape here in western MA, there is almost always a hidden story that tells the historical tale of life long ago. One such story is about the Hampshire and Hampden Canal, built in the early 1800’s to connect New Haven with Northampton, defunct by the 1940’s. In an upcoming exhibit at Historic Northampton, the story about the Canal will be told through photographs, images, artifacts and documents and will open your eyes and curiosity about features in the landscape as it relates to local history of transportation and commerce here in the Pioneer Valley. This exhibition is a great way to link an interest in landscape studies with local history, photography, and issues pertaining to American industrialism. Read on…

Two remarkable photo exhibits start next week, capturing everyday life and scenes in the respective regions of the photographers: Serbia, Bosnia, and Croatia, and Northampton, MA. There’s nothing more captivating than a photographer pressing a scene’s pause button and capturing timeless essence for us to enjoy and reflect upon.

Exhibits such as these provide an inspiring community-based educational opportunity for children to learn so much from. Challenge them to photograph a scene on a regular basis and for them to evaluate the power of documentation and storytelling. A great place to start is by attending the exhibits of the two multi-talented photographers living in our own region here in western Massachusetts.

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