The winter solstice is an introspective celebration for reconnecting with nature and community. As we begin to stay indoors more and spend time with families and friends, the winter season is an opportunity to disconnect from technology and reconnect with neighbors and family. Storytelling fosters this connection through intergenerational dialogue and shared experiences.
Annual community celebrations for the Winter Solstice spotlight storytelling as part of their event, giving guests the opportunity to both listen and tell. Get your stories ready for these annual solstice community events!
‘Tis the season for stories. And what better way to share a story than snuggling up with your favorite kids and turning the pages of a beloved holiday book. Here are twenty suggestions for Solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa!
Originally broadcasted out of Northampton, MA on WXOJ-LP 103.3FM (Valley Free Radio) for the holidays, we’ve gathered eight holiday episodes of the Hilltown Family Variety Show from over the years to share with your family as we celebrate the season. Enjoy these hour long, commercial-free podcasts that celebrate Chanukah, Christmas, Winter Solstice, Kwanzaa, the New Year and the spirit of peace and giving.
Holiday events happening across the region. We’ll be adding to this list each week, so check back!
Learning Ahead: Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts is a bimonthly publication produced by Hilltown Families that sheds light on embedded learning opportunities found in cultural resources that exist within the geography, history, and cultural traditions of Western Massachusetts.
With these downloadable seasonal itineraries, self-directed teens, lifelong learners, and families are encouraged to engage together in cultural opportunities that support similar interests, resulting in a shared history, strengthening sense of place.
Looking through a seasonal lens, our Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts for November and December includes…
Find out about family holiday events in Western MA with our comprehensive list of non-commercial holiday events!
Find out about family holiday events in Western MA! We’ll be adding to this list as the month progresses, so be sure to check back each week! — Remember to mark your calendars and get ready to support Hilltown Families on Valley Gives Day: December 10th!
We’ve curated a collection of holiday episodes of the Hilltown Family Variety Show for your listening enjoyment! Listen any time to these hour-long commercial-free podcasts, originally broadcasted on 103.3FM WXOJ, celebrating Chanukah, Christmas, Winter Solstice, Kwanzaa, the New Year and the spirit of peace and giving!
Welcome Yule: A Midwinter Celebration features the Swedish tradition of Santa Lucia day this year. Delightful music, dance, songs and stories celebrating the return of the light. 29th anniversary show for all ages at The Shea Theater in Turners Falls this holiday season…
We’re building a comprehensive list of family holiday events happening in Western MA, including Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and the Winter Solstice. Arranged according to date, county or type of event, families are sure to find the perfect holiday event for the season to share with the kids or to take visiting relatives to. Find out about community tree lighting events, visits by Santa, holiday strolls, places to MYO gifts, caroling and choral music and more!
Looking for 2013 Winter Solstice Events? Click here. Winter Solstice Community Celebrations in Western MA, 2012 Communities in Western MA gather this time of year to celebrate the longest night and the shortest day, welcoming the return of the light. Many celebrations consist of bonfire, storytelling, sharing of community intentions and singing. Below are a list of upcoming community Winter Solstice events. If you enjoy storytelling at home, check out Cheli’s list… Read More
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year It’s the Winter Solstice! This year on December 22nd. The actual blessed event is three minutes after midnight on the 22nd, so we are celebrating it like the purists we are! The evening begins at Elmer’s in Ashfield, MA with dinner starting at 5pm, if you’d like to come to that part. We line up all the tables in a long, family style line…. Read More
Winter Solstice Community Celebrations in Western MA, 2011 Communities in Western MA gather this time of year to celebrate the longest night and the shortest day, welcoming the return of the light. Many celebrations consist of bonfire, storytelling, sharing of community intentions and singing. Below are a list of community Winter Solstice events beginning this weekend. If you enjoy storytelling at home, check out Cheli’s list of recommended children’s picture books for… Read More
Holiday Books ‘Tis the season for stories. And what better way to share a story than snuggling up with your favorite kids and turning the pages of a beloved holiday book. Here are twenty suggestions for Solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. Some are brand new books and some are not-so-new favorites, but all are sure to get you and your kids into the holiday spirit. The Polar Express written and illustrated by… Read More
Welcome Yule: A Midwinter Celebration Shea Theater in Turners Falls, MA In many different cultures, it is traditional to gather together and celebrate around the darkest time of the year. Celebrations of holidays in many different religions and cultures all take place around the winter solstice- it’s a time of year when a strong sense of community is desired and cultivated as a way of tolerating the season together. Your family can… Read More
Question and Answer Does your family celebrate the Winter Solstice? How do you mark the shortest day of the year? Alisa Blanchard writes: “We’re watching the lunar eclipse and having friends over for a lighting of the candles and ringing of the bells. I can’t wait!” Leslie Lynn Lucio writes: “Hoping for us to make it out to the solstice celebration at Arcadia…” Susan Loring-Wells writes: “Celebrate Winter Solstice with a… 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
Happy Winter Solstice, Chanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and all other seasonal celebrations! 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. Suggest an Event | Local Forecast | Get Directions | Free Museum Passes | School Closings and Delays | Family Centers (Ages 0-4) | Facebook Events Happening in… Read More
One my favorite movies to watch during the holidays is The Snowman by Raymond Briggs, a 23 minute pencil-drawn animation. It’s the purity of The Snowman that I enjoy the most.
Being a grocer is hard. You have to anticipate and plan and order things weeks in advance. You have to see into the future. You have to know that if there is a half moon on a Thursday, and the temperature is less than 25 degrees and the humidity is over 65 percent, there will be a rush on curried salsa even if you’ve never sold a jar of the stuff. I’m not kidding, folks.
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES THIS WINTER IN THE HILLTOWNS What a snow storm! Think about all the fun outdoor adventures your kids will have this weekend either skiing, sledding or snowshoeing. Which reminds me to remind you about the upcoming afternoon program this winter, Outdoor Adventures for Kids in the Hilltowns. Hilltown Families (that’s us!) has collaborated with Tekoa Mountain Outdoors to offer a ten week Monday afternoon (4pm-5pm) adventure program for kids ages… Read More