HFVS Weather Episode with Guest DJ, Alison Faith Levy (Radio Show/Podcast)

 

Hilltown Family Variety Show

WEATHER EPISODE
GUEST DJ, ALISON FAITH LEVY

Listen to Podcast:

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
July 19th & 20th, 2014

WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: “World of Wonder,” the title track from Alison Faith Levy’s debut album for children World of Wondera paean to the natural world and all its mystery. Animated by filmmaker Danny Plotnick. – www.alisonfaithlevy.com


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PLAYLIST

  • Electric Light Orchestra – “Mr. Blue Sky” – [Out of the Blue]
  • Grateful Dead – “Box of Rain” [American Beauty]
  • Allen Clapp – “Scattered Showers” [One Hundred Percent Chance of Rain]
  • Alison Faith Levy – “I Love the Rain” [World of Wonder]
  • The Velvet Underground – “Who Loves the Sun” [Loaded]
  • The Hollies – “Everything is Sunshine” [The Hollies: Epic Anthology]
  • XTC – “Ballet for a Rainy Day” [Skylarking]
  • Jimi Hendrix – “The Wind Cries Mary” [The Ultimate Experience]
  • Beach Boys – “Wind Chimes” [Smile Sessions]
  • Allen Clapp & His Orchestra – “If the Wind is Right” [Mixed Greens]
  • The Three O’Clock – “When Lightning Starts” [Sixteen Tambourines]
  • Led Zeppelin – “The Rain Song” [Houses of the Holy]
  • Neko Case – “This Tornado Loves You” [Middle Cyclone]
  • Alison Faith Levy – “Eye of the Tornado” [World of Wonder]
  • Etta James – “Stormy Weather” [At Last]
  • The Beatles – “Good Day Sunshine” [Revolver]
  • The Beatles – “Here Comes the Sun” [Abbey Road]
  • The Beatles – “Sun King” [Abbey Road]
  • Autumn Leaves – “Stars in the Snow” [The Twilight Hours of the Autumn Leaves]
  • The Sippy Cups – “Drinking from the Sky” [Electric Storyland]
  • The Jayhawks – “Save It For a Rainy Day” [Rainy Day Music]
  • The Kinks – “Waterloo Sunset” [Something Else by The Kinks]

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Win Tickets to see Josh Ritter & the Royal City Band

Josh Ritter and the Royal City Band
Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA
Thursday, May 9th, 2013 at 8pm

Josh Ritter and the Royal City Band plus The Felice Brothers

Enter for your chance to win! You pay for the sitter and we’ll pay for the tickets!

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! You pay for the sitter, we’ll pay for the tickets!

For May we are pleased to offer a chance to win a pair of tickets to see  Josh Ritter and the Royal City Band plus The Felice Brothers at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Thursday, May 9th, 2013.

Win tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is Monday, 05/06/13 by 11:59pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT JOSH RITTER

The Beast In Its Tracks, the sixth album from renowned singer-songwriter Josh Ritter, was released past March.  The new album follows Ritter’s 2010 release, So Runs The World Away, of which Bob Boilen from NPR Music declared, “I’ve come to expect good records from him…but this one took my breath away,” while the Boston Globe praised, “quite sensational…marks the finest music he has made.” In 2011, Ritter made is debut as a published author with his New York Times Best-selling novel, Bright’s Passage. Of the work, Stephen King writes in The New York Times Book Review, “Shines with a compressed lyricism that recalls Ray Bradbury in his prime . . . This is the work of a gifted novelist.” – www.joshritter.com

ABOUT THE FELICE BROTHERS

What separates The Felices mud-stomping folk from that of their peers is their no-winking honesty the sense that these songs and the places and people they’re singing about aren’t literary devices but actual people doing their damnedest to rage against the growing darkness. – www.thefelicebrothers.com

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a pair of tickets to see Josh Ritter and the Royal City Band plus The Felice Brothers at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Thursday, May 9th, 2013, is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)! To win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK & TWITTER by selecting from the icons below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY  THROUGHOUT THE REGION  below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Monday, 05/06/13 by 11:59pm (EST)

If you don’t win you should still go. Tickets are available at the Northampton Box office, online at IHEG.com, or by calling 413-586-8686.

HFVS Weather Episode with Guest DJ, Alison Faith Levy (Radio Show/Podcast)

Listen to Podcast:

WEATHER EPISODE
GUEST DJ, ALISON FAITH LEVY

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: “World of Wonder,” the title track from Alison Faith Levy’s debut album for children World of Wondera paean to the natural world and all its mystery. Animated by filmmaker Danny Plotnick.


New Podcasts ♦ Archived Podcasts Subscribe to Podcast
Radio  Facebook Twitter

PLAYLIST

  • Electric Light Orchestra – “Mr. Blue Sky” – [Out of the Blue]
  • Grateful Dead – “Box of Rain” [American Beauty]
  • Allen Clapp – “Scattered Showers” [One Hundred Percent Chance of Rain]
  • Alison Faith Levy – “I Love the Rain” [World of Wonder]
  • The Velvet Underground – “Who Loves the Sun” [Loaded]
  • The Hollies – “Everything is Sunshine” [The Hollies: Epic Anthology]
  • XTC – “Ballet for a Rainy Day” [Skylarking]
  • Jimi Hendrix – “The Wind Cries Mary” [The Ultimate Experience]
  • Beach Boys – “Wind Chimes” [Smile Sessions]
  • Allen Clapp & His Orchestra – “If the Wind is Right” [Mixed Greens]
  • The Three O’Clock – “When Lightning Starts” [Sixteen Tambourines]
  • Led Zeppelin – “The Rain Song” [Houses of the Holy]
  • Neko Case – “This Tornado Loves You” [Middle Cyclone]
  • Alison Faith Levy – “Eye of the Tornado” [World of Wonder]
  • Etta James – “Stormy Weather” [At Last]
  • The Beatles – “Good Day Sunshine” [Revolver]
  • The Beatles – “Here Comes the Sun” [Abbey Road]
  • The Beatles – “Sun King” [Abbey Road]
  • Autumn Leaves – “Stars in the Snow” [The Twilight Hours of the Autumn Leaves]
  • The Sippy Cups – “Drinking from the Sky” [Electric Storyland]
  • The Jayhawks – “Save It For a Rainy Day” [Rainy Day Music]
  • The Kinks – “Waterloo Sunset” [Something Else by The Kinks]

ABOUT ALISON FAITH LEVY

Alison Faith Levy

Alison Faith Levy, the songwriter behind such Sippy Cups hits as “Magic Toast,” “The Jellyfish,” “Move Your Pants” and “One Day Soon,” returns to making music for kids with a stunning solo album, World of Wonder.

After spending five years criss-crossing the country with the psychedelic rock n’ roll circus for kids that was The Sippy Cups, performing in such venues such as Symphony Space in NYC, Lollapalooza, House of Blues, Central Park Summerstage and Austin City Limits, Alison Faith Levy took a break from performing for children and found success with her “grown-up” Americana band, McCabe & Mrs. Miller, with songwriting partner Victor Krummenacher (of Camper Van Beethoven). They performed with the likes of Rosanne Cash, Cracker, and Built to Spill, and released an acclaimed album  Time for Leaving.

Alison missed performing for children, however, and started up a music time at a local bookstore. She began writing new songs for the kids, and word spread quickly. Within a few months the place was packed to the rafters every week and she started putting a band together and booking performances at libraries, museums, music venues and outdoor festivals.  She enlisted the help of her friend, songwriter and bandleader of lush indie popsters The Orange Peels — producer Allen Clapp. Together they took the new batch of songs and crafted their perfect pop album, playing practically every instrument on the album themselves and mining their collective encyclopedic knowledge of pop music for production touchstones. – www.alisonfaithlevy.com

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Win Tickets to see Carolina Chocolate Drops plus David Wax Museum at the Calvin Theater

Carolina Chocolate Drops plus David Wax Museum
Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA
Saturday, April 13th, 2013 at 8pm

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! You pay for the sitter, we’ll pay for the tickets!

For April we are pleased to offer a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Carolina Chocolate Drops plus David Wax Museum at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Saturday, April 13th, 2013.

Win tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is Tuesday, 04/09/13 by 11:59pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT CAROLINA CHOCOLATE DROPS

Carolina Chocolate Drops’ members met at the 2005 Black Banjo Gathering in Boone, N.C., and have spent the years since revitalizing and refreshing a glorious tradition of African-American string-band music. But this is no mere trio of nostalgia-miners: Members Dom Flemons, Rhiannon Giddens and Justin Robinson are as likely to work with a progressive orchestra, or to reinvent Blu Cantrell’s R&B hit “Hit ‘Em Up Style,” as they are to draw on old-time jug-band favorites. — www.carolinachocolatedrops.com

ABOUT DAVID WAX MUSEUM

Anointed as Bostons Americana Artist of the Year (2010 Boston Music Awards), the David Wax Museum has been called pure, irresistible joy (Bob Boilen, NPR) and hailed by TIME.com for its virtuosic musical skill and virtuous harmonies. It is no surprise that its acclaimed performance at the 2010 Newport Folk Festival was hailed as one of highlights of the entire weekend by NPR. The Museum fuses traditional Mexican folk with American roots and indie rock to create an utterly unique Mexo- Americana aesthetic. Combining Latin rhythms, call-and-response hollering, and donkey jawbone rattling, they have electrified audiences across the country and are kicking up a cloud of excitement with their high-energy border-crossing sensibility (The New Yorker). — www.davidwaxmuseum.com

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a pair of tickets to see Carolina Chocolate Drops plus David Wax Museum at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Saturday, April 13th, 2013, is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)! To win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK & TWITTER by selecting from the icons below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY  THROUGHOUT THE REGION  below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Tuesday, 04/09/13 by 11:59pm (EST).

If you don’t win you should still go. Tickets are available at the Northampton Box office, online at IHEG.com, or by calling 413-586-8686.

Win a Family 4-Pack of Tickets to Imago: ZooZoo at UMass

Imago: ZooZoo
Thursday, April 11th at 7:30pm
UMass Fine Arts Center in Amherst

“Theater like this opens the eyes to the possibilities of exploration in the vast 
realm of imagination.”  – New York Times

Hilltown Families and the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall at University of Massachusetts in Amherst have partnered up to offer two family 4-packs of tickets to two lucky families to see Imago: ZooZoo on Thursday, April 11th at 7:30pm, at UMass Fine Arts Center Concert Hall in Amherst, MA!

Deadline to enter to win: 4/8/13 by 11:59pm (EST).  More details below.

ABOUT IMAGO: ZOOZOO

Imago Theatre’s shows have been described as Cirque Du Soleil-evoking acrobatics mixed with Mummenschanz-like mime, set in a unique yet accessible French-
influenced avant-garde playground. Imagine all of that with
 penguins playing musical chairs, a cat trapped in a giant paper bag, hippos with
 insomnia, anteaters as waiters, and a madcap revue of illusion. That’s ZooZoo, the 
critically acclaimed mix of dance, design, circus, music, text and illusion that has inspired
audiences nationwide.

This is an Arts Give back event for Feline
Friends. Tickets holders are asked to bring an item from the Feline Friends’ wish list
available at www.felinefriendsinc.org.

ABOUT IMAGO THEATER

Carol Triffle and Jerry Mouawad, the creators of Imago, have been called alchemists, magicians, theatrical animators, and physical comedians.  Defying classification, they have populated the stage with characters and beings such as comedic amphibians, acrobatic larvae, circus boulders, and metamorphosing humans in works which tantalize the senses, the intellect, and the passions. From adaptations of classics to excursions into vaudevillian existentialism, Imago’s repertoire is as vast as the forms they shape. With commissions for stage, film, and television, Imago blurs the lines of the expected to break new ground, exploding performance boundaries yet maintaining humor and humanity.

Imago Theatre tours internationally while also producing a season at its home base in Portland, Oregon. The company’s critically acclaimed productions FROGZ and ZooZoo have played at the prestigious New Victory Theatre on Broadway. www.imagotheatre.com

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win one of two free family 4-pack of tickets to Imago: ZooZoo on Thursday, April 11th at 7:30pm, at UMass Fine Arts Center Concert Hall in Amherst is easy & simple! To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY  THROUGHOUT THE REGION  below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline to enter to win: 4/8/13 by 11:59pm (EST)

Tickets for Imago: ZooZoo at the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall are $30, $25,
$15; Five College, GCC, STCC students and youth 17 and under are $10. For tickets 
call the Box Office at 413- 545-2511, toll-free at 800-999-UMAS, or purchase online at 
fineartscenter.com. Imago: ZooZoo is sponsored by Baystate Medical Practices and the
Daily Hampshire Gazette.

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Win Tickets to see Gaelic Storm at the Calvin Theater

Gaelic Storm at the Calvin Theater
Northampton, MA
Friday, March 22nd, 2013 at 8pm

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! You pay for the sitter, we’ll pay for the tickets!

For this spring we are pleased to offer a chance to win a pair of tickets to see Gaelic Storm at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Saturday, March 22nd, 2013.

Win tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is Tuesday, 03/19/13 by 11:59pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT GAELIC STORM

Celtic-rock group Gaelic Storm’s dazzling new #1 Billboard World Album Chicken Boxer is a heavyweight record that comes out swinging with a mix of empowering anthems and traditional ballads. Gaelic Storm has earned a reputation as one of the world-music scene’s preeminent Celtic bands. With catalog sales of more than 1 million, the group has now had three albums debut at #1 on the Billboard World Albums Chart, 2008’s What’s the Rumpus?, 2010’s Cabbage, which remained parked in the top slot for three consecutive weeks, and now, 2012’s Chicken Boxer. The group’s ability to deftly incorporate a rock sensibility into their sound affords them rare crossover appeal. In recent years, they’ve performed on the same bill with acts ranging from Zac Brown Band and the Goo Goo Dolls to Emmylou Harris and Lyle Lovett, at events as varied as the Telluride Bluegrass Festival and Milwaukee’s Summerfest. Chicken Boxer, and Gaelic Storm live, deliver a titanic knock out.

Discover more about Gaelic Storm at www.gaelicstorm.com.

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a pair of tickets to see Gaelic Storm at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Saturday, March 22nd, 2013., is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)! To win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK & TWITTER by selecting from the icons below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY  THROUGHOUT THE REGION  below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Tuesday, 03/19/13 by 11:59pm (EST).

If you don’t win you should still go. Tickets are available at the Northampton Box office, online at IHEG.com, or by calling 413-586-8686.

One-Minute VidFest Welcomes Youth Participants

REACH One-Minute VidFest

Do you have a tween/teen who likes to make short videos? There is a current call to artists of all ages for video submissions for the REACH One-Minute VidFest, and tween/teens are welcomed to participate. All videos must be no more than one minute and received by March 4, 2013.

The REACH One-Minute VidFest will be screened on April 13, 2013 at Popcorn Noir Movie Theatre in Easthampton, MA, in conjunction with REACH—a festival of over 25 exhibitions of works by contemporary practitioners located in multiple venues throughout Easthampton and Holyoke, MA. There is a submission fee of $5 per video.  For more information & guidelines, visit www.reachfest.com or email REACH at reachfest@gmail.com.

Ticket Giveaway: Family 4-Pack of Tickets to “The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater” at The Colonial Theatre

The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater
February 19th, 2013
The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA

Enter for a chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets for a fun show and visit with The Eleanor Sonsini Animal Shelter and the Berkshire Humane Society who will be in attendance too, helping raise awareness about animal adoption! Deadline to enter to win: 02/12/13 by 11:59pm (EST). More details below.

Hilltown Families and the Berkshire Theatre Group have partnered up to offer a free family 4-pack of tickets to one lucky family to The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater on Tuesday, February 19th at 2pm, at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA!

The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater will delight audiences of all ages with amazing circus skills and extraordinarily talented and rescued pets.  Enter for a chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets for a fun show and visit with The Eleanor Sonsini Animal Shelter and the Berkshire Humane Society who will be in attendance too, helping raise awareness about animal adoption! Deadline to enter to win: 02/12/13 by 11:59pm (EST).  More details below.

ABOUT THE POPOVICH COMEDY PET THEATER

The World Famous Popovich Comedy Pet Theater is a perennial favorite featuring Gregory Popovich and his cast of jugglers, clowns, 15 house cats, 10 dogs, 4 geese, 8 white doves, and 2 parrots. Each of the show’s 15 cats and 10 dogs were once strays, rescued from animal shelters.

Gregory grew up in a unique environment, as the child of Russian circus performers Alex and Tamara Popovich. In addition to their juggling and performing skills, Gregory’s parents were dog trainers. From a very young age, Gregory formed a special bond with animals. Eventually, the connection he formed with his mother’s showdogs led to his participation onstage, assisting with Tamara’s dog act. At the age of six, Gregory began to learn the art of juggling. Eight years later, he prepared his first solo act – juggling on a free standing ladder. After the public debut of this feat, Gregory became a member of the renowned Moscow Circus at the age of 17.

The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater is a family-oriented blend of the unique comedy and juggling skills of Gregory Popovich, and the extraordinary talents of his performing pets. They love to show off onstage – performing a variety of stunts and skits! Audiences will be delighted to see this extravaganza of European-style clowning, amazing juggling and balancing acts, and of course, very talented performing pets. Debuting in The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater’s 2013/14 season are the following new vignettes: Funny Winner Dog, Trained Geese, Dog Football, Dr. Doolittle, Brave Parrots, and Pet Fire Marshalls.

The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater has performed in more than 20 countries, and is currently in its 4th season at the Planet Hollywood Resort/Casino in Las Vegas. Mr. Popovich and his Pets have been featured on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with David Letterman, and as a finalist on NBC’s America’s Got Talent. Feature stories have appeared in People, The New Yorker and USA TODAY. Most recently Gregory wrote a book about cats entitled, You CAN Train Your Cats.

Find out more about Gregory Popovich and his world famous Popovich Comedy Pet Theater at www.comedypet.com.

ABOUT THE COLONIAL THEATRE & BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP

The Colonial Theatre, founded in 1903, and Berkshire Theatre Festival, founded in 1928, are two of the oldest cultural organizations in the Berkshires.  Having united in November of 2010 under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire, these two institutions are providing the Berkshires and beyond with the finest in live theatre, music, dance and the visual arts on five stages in Berkshire County, including The Colonial Theatre. The Colonial in Pittsfield (780 seats) re-opened in August of 2006, following a $21 million restoration, and boasts pristine acoustics, classic gilded age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. For more information on BTF call 413-298-5536 or go online to www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org.  The Colonial Theatre is located at 111 South Street in Pittsfield, MA.  For schedule and ticket information visit www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org or call 413-997-4444.

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a free family 4-pack of tickets to The Popovich Comedy Pet Theater on Tuesday, February 19th at 2pm, at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA (valued at $60) is easy & simple! To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY  THROUGHOUT THE REGION  below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline to enter to win: 02/12/13 by 11:59pm (EST)

Ticket Giveaway: Family 4-Pack to “A Christmas Carol” at The Colonial Theatre

Berkshire Theatre Group’s
7th Annual Community Production of
A Christmas Carol
The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA

From December 15-30, 2012, Berkshire Theatre Group presents its annual community production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, adapted by Eric Hill and presented for the second time at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA. – Enter for your chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets to their final performance on Sunday, Dec. 30th at 2pm!

Hilltown Families and the Berkshire Theatre Group have partnered up to offer a free family 4-pack of tickets to one lucky family to see BTG’s 7th annual community production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA!

This community production runs Dec. 15th-30th, and we are giving away a family 4-pack of tickets to see their final performance on Sunday, Dec. 30th at 2pm. Win tickets and surprise your family on Christmas Day with the gift of community theater!  Deadline to enter to win: Monday, Dec. 24th, 2012 by 12noon (EST). More details below.

ABOUT THE PERFORMANCE

Revel in the joy and redemptive power of Christmas as told in the timeless tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, the infamous miser who is reformed and shown the error of his ways by four spirits. Journey back to Victorian England and experience Charles Dickens’ classic story filled with terrific turns and infused with holiday music.

“In 2006, we introduced Berkshire audiences to our production of A Christmas Carol at our Unicorn Theatre,” says BTG Artistic Director, Kate Maguire. “The production instantly became an annual favorite. Last year—we moved to The Colonial Theatre where A Christmas Carol has found a wonderful new home. The Colonial is a perfect setting for this timeless tale about goodness and greed.”

A Christmas Carol runs December 15–30, 2012 at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield with 7:30pm performances Thurs.-Sat., and 2pm performances on Sat. & Sun. (excluding opening night). Before each performance families are invited to arrive early and be treated to a performance by BTG’s Children’s Chorus of holiday music and sing-a-longs in The Garage.

The Colonial Theatre is located at 111 South Street in Pittsfield, MA.  For schedule and ticket information visit www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org or call 413-997-4444.

ABOUT THE COLONIAL THEATRE & BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP

The Colonial Theatre, founded in 1903, and Berkshire Theatre Festival, founded in 1928, are two of the oldest cultural organizations in the Berkshires.  Having united in November of 2010 under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire, these two institutions are providing the Berkshires and beyond with the finest in live theatre, music, dance and the visual arts on five stages in Berkshire County, including The Colonial Theatre. The Colonial in Pittsfield (780 seats) re-opened in August of 2006, following a $21 million restoration, and boasts pristine acoustics, classic gilded age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. For more information on BTF call 413-298-5536 or go online to www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org.

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets to see Berkshire Theatre Group’s 7th annual community production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, at The Colonial Theatre on Sunday, Dec. 30th at 2pm in Pittsfield, MA (valued at $100) is easy & simple! To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY   below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Monday, Dec. 24, 2012 at 12noon (EST).

Berkshire Lyric: 50 Years of Creating Culture in the Cold Months

Do You Want to Know a Secret?
1963 was Big for the Beatles … and Berkshire Lyric

By Jaclyn Stevenson

The Blafield Children’s Chorus. (Photo credit: Jaclyn Stevenson)

2013 will be a banner year for golden anniversaries. Among many other cultural milestones, the Beatles’ debut album Please Please Me will mark 50 years in existence. Recorded in one session, it seems the album struck a chord; three months after its release, the term ‘Beatlemania’ was coined…and the rest is history.

Also in 1963, Berkshire Lyric – one of the area’s longest running community arts organizations – was beginning its own musical legacy and creating a new resource for music education in western Massachusetts along the way. The multi-generational choral group is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a full season of performances, and will perform a wide array of musical selections by composers such as Handel, Mozart and Stravinsky – as well as Lennon, McCartney, Harrison, and Starr.

A Berkshire Lyric program from 1969 – then known as the Berkshire Lyric Theatre, the group performed musicals in various venues across the county.

In the last half-century, Berkshire Lyric has evolved from a lyric theater troupe staging musicals – Hansel and Gretel and The Most Happy Fella among them – into a choral performance powerhouse with four separate choruses and singers spanning five generations.

Under the direction of Artistic Director Jack Brown of Stockbridge, who serves as choral director at Simon’s Rock College in Great Barrington, the choruses present complex classical works such as Requiem by contemporary British composer Karl Jenkins and Rachmaninoff’s Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. Music education programs including the Young Singers Competition, the Berkshire Lyric Choral Scholars Program, and the annual Blafield Summer Choral Camps named for Berkshire Lyric’s founder, Robert Blafield.  These programs complement performances throughout the year and are supervised by Brown and Telly award-winning pianist Joe Rose, music director for St. Charles Church in Pittsfield and the choruses’ accompanist.

Berkshire Lyric leaves no genre behind; its repertoire also offers well-timed slices of popular culture each season to lighten the mood. Concerts in the past have offered island-inspired performances and traditional Irish medleys, for instance, and that diverse, all-inclusive approach to music is one thing that has never changed. It grew, Brown says, from a need in the Berkshires to “create culture for the cold months,” and in turn to offer year-round residents opportunities to study or simply enjoy choral music.

Fifty years later, it seems that stalwart Yankee gumption has stayed strong. In the upcoming season, Berkshire Lyric’s ‘Kick the Winter Blues’ concert theme will be a nod to the year it all started with a 1963 Revival. As the Beatles cemented their place in international history, Berkshire Lyric was creating its own legacy in the woods – one that continues to grow.

Berkshire Lyric’s Upcoming Season

The Berkshire Singers, the teenage chorus of Berkshire Lyric, will be featured in a special concert at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012, at 11am. The chorus is led by Joe Rose and will be performing as part of the museum’s annual Festival of Trees Family Day celebration. Admission is free with a paid admission to the museum.

Deck the Halls, The Christmas Concert takes place on Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012, at 3pm at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in downtown Pittsfield. Featuring the Monument Mountain High School Chorus and the Spartones, both directed by Julie Bickford, and Gaudeamus, a select a cappella chorus of 10 young men from Simon’s Rock College in Great Barrington. Tickets are $20 for adults and free for students and children.

Berkshire Lyric will present Handel’s Messiah as a community sing on Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012, at 3pm at the First United Methodist Church in Pittsfield. The audience is invited to be the chorus and vocal scores will be sold at the door. The concert will be conducted by Jack Brown with accompaniment on the church’s great Austin organ by Joe Rose. A professional string quartet will be augmented by local young string players. Four past winners of Berkshire Lyric’s Young Singers Competition will be the vocal soloists: Felicia Coppola-Pavao, Elaina Pullano, Miles Herr, and Timothy Passetto. Admission is by donation. The free will offering will be sponsored by the Pittsfield Area Council of Congregations, and all proceeds will directly benefit the Pittsfield Area Fuel Assistance Program.

The 50th Anniversary season will culminate in a gala concert at Tanglewood’s Seiji Ozawa Hall on June 9, 2013, with all of the choruses and special appearances by founder Robert Blafield and Berkshire Lyric protégé and world renowned soprano Maureen O’Flynn.

Event and season tickets may be purchased online at www.BerkshireLyricInfo.org


About the Author:

Jaclyn Stevenson

Jaclyn is a freelance writer and photographer and works in the field of public relations for a creative agency in the Berkshires. writerjax.net

Ticket Giveaway: Family 4-Pack to “A Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar” at The Colonial Theatre

A Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar:
Treasured Stories by Eric Carle
The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA
Sunday, October 28th @ 2pm

Enter to win a family 4-pack of tickets to  A Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar at the Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA on Sunday, Oct. 28th at 2pm. Deadline to enter: 10/23/12.

Hilltown Families and the Berkshire Theatre Group have partnered up to offer a free family 4-pack of tickets to one lucky family to see the much-anticipated new production from Mermaid TheatreA Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar!

This new production brings together three of Eric Carle’s most beloved tales. The Very Hungry Caterpillar is joined by a whimsical cast of adventurous animals drawn from the pages of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, and a young girl on an unusual quest from the poignant story, Papa, Please Get The Moon For Me. Evocative music, stunning visual effects and innovative puppetry entertain and educate.

This production in Berkshire County is on Sunday, October 28th at 2pm at the Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA. Win a 4-pack of tickets and take your family for a delightful Sunday afternoon performance! Deadline to enter to win: Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012 at 11:59pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT THE COLONIAL THEATRE & BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP

The Colonial Theatre, founded in 1903, and Berkshire Theatre Festival, founded in 1928, are two of the oldest cultural organizations in the Berkshires.  Having united in November of 2010 under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire, these two institutions are providing the Berkshires and beyond with the finest in live theatre, music, dance and the visual arts on five stages in Berkshire County, including The Colonial Theatre. The Colonial in Pittsfield (780 seats) re-opened in August of 2006, following a $21 million restoration, and boasts pristine acoustics, classic gilded age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. For more information on BTF call 413-298-5536 or go online to www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org.

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a family 4-pack of tickets to see Mermaid Theatre’s production of A Brown Bear, a Moon, and a Caterpillar: Treasured Stories by Eric Carle at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA Sunday, October 28th @ 2pm (valued at $60) is easy & simple! To enter to win simply:

  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below
  • TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES KEEPS YOU CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY   below (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012 at 11:59pm (EST).

Read the rest of this entry »

Ticket Giveaway: Parents’ Night Out to See FOUND at The Colonial Theatre

FOUND
The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA
Friday, September 21st @ 8pm

We’re giving away two pairs of tickets to see FOUND, a new musical comedy by Hunter Bell, arriving at the Berkshire Theatre Groups’s Colonial Theatre on Sept 21 & 22 in Pittsfield. Enter to win one of two pairs of tickets to the Friday night performance.  Deadline to enter to win: 9/18.

Continuing our Parents’ Night Out promotions, Hilltown Families has two pairs of tickets to giveaway to see the new musical comedy, FOUND, on opening night to be performed at Berkshire Theatre Group’s Colonial Theatre on Friday, Sept. 21 at 8pm and Saturday, Sept. 22 at 2pm & 8pm- a night out in the heart of the Berkshires!

Win tickets to the Friday night production and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is Tuesday, 9/18/12 @ 7pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT FOUND

Based on Davy Rothbart’s popular Found books, magazines, tours and appearances on This American Life comes a new musical comedy about the things we’ve lost and the ways they bring us together. Hunter Bell joins composer/lyricist Eli Bolin, director Lee Overtree, and indie-comedy favorite the Story Pirates troupe in a semi-autobiographical account of Davy’s life and loves as he performs around the country, set against a backdrop of the hilarious and heart-breaking real notes and letters from the pages of Found magazine, as they come to life on stage.

Davy has built a touring show sharing notes, letters, any scraps of paper with words, lost by others. With him on his journey, are his best friends Mikey D. (his lovable, bearish tour manager) and Denise (his dry, caught in the friend zone, merch-seller extraordinaire). When Davy meets and falls for Kate, a schoolteacher, the fate of the tour and the trio’s lives change dramatically, forcing Davy to choose between a life on the road or a life with Kate. Painted over the backdrop of hilarious and heartbreaking actual found ephemera, Found explores not just the things, but the people we find in life and proves we all have stories worth telling. Sometimes those stories are big. Sometimes they’re on a post-it note.

From the award-winning team of  Victoria Lang (SILENCE! The Musical, Johnny Guitar, Matt & Ben), Jamie Salka (Dazzle, The Goat), Eva Price (Peter & the Starcatcher, The Addams Family, Voca People), David Gallo (The Drowsy Chaperone, Blue Man Group) and Hunter Bell ( [title of show], SILENCE! The Musical ) comes the next exciting new multi-media theatrical experience.

Adult Audiences Only.

ABOUT THE COLONIAL THEATRE & BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP

The Colonial Theatre, founded in 1903, and Berkshire Theatre Festival, founded in 1928, are two of the oldest cultural organizations in the Berkshires.  Having united in November of 2010 under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire, these two institutions are providing the Berkshires and beyond with the finest in live theatre, music, dance and the visual arts on five stages in Berkshire County, including The Colonial Theatre. The Colonial in Pittsfield (780 seats) re-opened in August of 2006, following a $21 million restoration, and boasts pristine acoustics, classic gilded age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. For more information on BTF call 413-298-5536 or go online to www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org.

HOW TO WIN

We’re putting together a BUCKET LIST of things to do and places to see in Western MA with the family in the fall (Sept-Dec). Recommend your favorite attraction, must see or must do family autumn activity in Western MA, and be entered to win a pair of tickets to see FOUND at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA on Friday, Sept. 21st at 8pm. To win simply:

  • POST YOUR RECOMMENDATION AS OUTLINED ABOVE IN THE FIELDS BELOW (one entry Ticket Giveaway: Parents’ Night Out to See FOUND at The Colonial Theatreper household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below.
  • We’ll randomly draw two winners and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Tuesday, 9/18/12 @ 7pm (EST)

Read the rest of this entry »

Ticket Giveaway: Family 4-Pack to Story Pirates at The Colonial Theatre

Story Pirates
The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA
Saturday, September 15th @ 2pm

Described as “Monty Python meets Schoolhouse Rock,” Story Pirates is different every time, and includes a story that’s improvised onstage based on suggestions from the kids in the audience. Enter to win a family 4-pack of tickets to see them at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield on Saturday, Sept. 15th at 2pm. Details on how to enter to win are below.

Story Pirates, a nationally respected education and media organization and creators of the pre-Broadway workshop, FOUND, perform a hilarious and kid friendly show presented by the Berkshire Theatre Group at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA on September 15th, 2012 at 2pm… and Hilltown Families has a family 4-pack of tickets to giveaway!  Win a pack of tickets and take your family for a delightful Saturday afternoon performance! Deadline to enter to win: Wednesday, Sept. 12th, 2012 at 7pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT STORY PIRATES

While many children’s theater troupes tell stories to kids, the Story Pirates believe that every child has a story to tell!  The process begins by collecting stories from local kids — whether it’s a world where cats can fly or a rock opera about fuzzy alien tickle monsters, the Pirates will turn any short story into a hilarious sketch comedy musical!  Described as “Monty Python meets Schoolhouse Rock,” this show is different every time, and includes a story that’s improvised onstage based on suggestions from the kids in the audience. Story Pirates is pitched perfectly to grown-ups and kids alike!

Story Pirates was founded in 2003 by a group of people seeking to bring quality education programs to under-resourced New York City public schools. The Pirates approach was to show kids everywhere that their ideas, their words, and their stories are important. They made kids’ own stories the basis for a big, loud, outrageous, musical sketch comedy show; because they believe kids’ imaginations are worth cultivating and ought to be celebrated.  Story Pirates now operates branches in both New York and Los Angeles, and serves to over two hundred and fifty schools and community-based organizations annually around the country.  Find out more about Story Pirates at www.storypirates.org.

ABOUT THE COLONIAL THEATRE & BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP

The Colonial Theatre, founded in 1903, and Berkshire Theatre Festival, founded in 1928, are two of the oldest cultural organizations in the Berkshires.  Having united in November of 2010 under the leadership of Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire, these two institutions are providing the Berkshires and beyond with the finest in live theatre, music, dance and the visual arts on five stages in Berkshire County, including The Colonial Theatre. The Colonial in Pittsfield (780 seats) re-opened in August of 2006, following a $21 million restoration, and boasts pristine acoustics, classic gilded age architecture and state-of-the-art technical systems. For more information on BTF call 413-298-5536 or go online to www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org.

HOW TO WIN

We’re putting together a BUCKET LIST of things to do and places to see in Western MA with the family in the fall (Sept-Dec). Recommend your favorite attraction, must see or must do family autumn activity, and be entered to win a 4-pack of tickets to see Story Pirates at The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, MA on Saturday, Sept. 15th at 2pm. To win simply:

  • POST YOUR RECOMMENDATION AS OUTLINED ABOVE  (one entry per household) and be sure to tell us your
  • FULL NAME (first/last) and where you
  • LIVE (TOWN/STATE) must include your town to be eligible.
  • ACCURATE EMAIL (we never share your email address).
  • CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below.
  • We’ll randomly draw two winners and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Tuesday, 9/11/12 @ 7pm (EST)

Read the rest of this entry »

8 Featured Music CDs for Your Summer Family Road Trip

Summer Roadtrip Music

Listeners to Hilltown Families’ weekly radio show/podcast Hilltown Family Variety Show (HFVS) know all too well about the great independent kids musicians we’ve featured on the show over the past five years.  For this summer we’re reviewing a collection of CD’s to entertain the family while traveling in the car to far off beaches, or your favorite swimming hole here in Western MA, featuring several musicians who have also been our guest DJs.

While not an exhaustive list of the great music recently released or coming out this summer, here are 8 great CDs your family can enjoy this summer:

Alison Faith Levy ♦ World of Wonder

Alison Faith Levy, formerly “Sippy Alison” from the kindie band, The Sippy Cups, has released her debut album this spring, World of Wonder.  In early May this year, Alison guest DJed the Hilltown Family Variety Show, putting together an excellent show about all things weather, including two cuts from this new album, “I Love the Rain” and “Eye of the Tornado.” Get a taste of the fabulous music off her new CD by listening to the podcast and check out the video we featured of the title track off this fabulous new album.

Recess Monkey ♦ In Tents

Load up the car pretend the family is running away to the circus with Recess Monkey’s newest CD, In Tents. This circus inspired CD brings in the voices of stellar guest musicians who have guest DJed the Hilltown Family Variety Show over the years, including Dean Jones and Sugar Free Allstars. And the 32-page story book, illustrated by Western MA’s very own children’s author/illustrator, Jarrett Krosoczka, will entertain the kids in the back seat while heading out on your big adventure. In late June, Jack, Daron and Drew will guest DJ the Hilltown Family Variety Show again this summer. Check back on June 23rd for the podcast and a peak at In Tents.

Orange Sherbet ♦ Delicious!

Delicious! celebrates the delights of eating seasonal locally grown foods during all seasons of the year.  Orange Sherbet’s songs off of this new album celebrate farmers’ markets, gardening, the four seasons, and rice & beans… among many other celebratory songs about local food and the seasons.  In late March this year Orange Sherbet guest DJed the Hilltown Family Variety Show, spinning tunes off this new album, including “Waffle Day,” “Garden Song,” “Springtime,” and the title track, “Delicious.”  Give the podcast a listen for a taste of this new CD, and check out their featured video.

Hope Harris ♦ Picasso, That’s Who!

Winner of the Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award for her previous album, Cousins Jamboree, Hope’s newest CD, Picasso, That’s Who! is a celebration of visual artists from the 19th & 20th century. The CD is a lovely way for families to receive musical mini-lessons in art appreciation. Kids can discover many great artists, including Romare Bearden, Jackson Pollock, Paul Klee, David Hockney, Pablo Picasso, Grandma Moses, Alexander Calder, Henri Matisse, Claude Money and Georgia O’Keeffe.

Mo Phillips ♦ Monster Suit

The family will love Mo Phillips fiery blend of Americana, soul and blues in his newest CD, Monster Suit, an album filled with music sometimes reminiscent of Western MA musical legends Woody and Arlo Gutherie.  Mo plays classic acoustic rock ‘n’ roll influence by Neil Young and The Rolling Stones, on topics most families can identify with, like bad hair days and surprising facts about ducks.

Maestro Classics ♦ Casey at the Bat

Stephen Simon and Bonnie Ward Simon, the husband-and-wife team behind Maestro Classics, guest DJed the Hilltown Family Variety Show in early March this year, calling their show “Classical Music Comes Alive.”  Listen to the podcast and get the kids excited with their enthusiasm for sharing classical music with families.  Their series of CDs began in 2004 as an outgrowth of their sold-out family concert series at The Kennedy Center with the Washington Chamber Symphony, for which Stephen served as music director and Bonnie as executive director. Casey at the Bat is a CD from the series that families can enjoy together while exploring classical music in similar fashion as the classic Peter and the Wolf.

The Broadway Lullaby Project ♦ Over the Moon

When the littlest one has fallen asleep on your family road trip, or it’s time for driving into the night, Over the Moon, a compilation of lullabies crafted together by a stellar cast of vocalists, Broadway composers, lyricists and producer, will speak eloquently to all listeners in the car. With piano and/or guitar, songs on this CD are about the love between parents and their kids, and the unique ways this love gets expressed.

Katherine Dines ♦ Hunk-Ta-Bunk-Ta

A pioneer of the “kindie” music genre, Katherine Dines newest CD, Hunk-Ta-Bunk-Ta, is a collection of her most requested songs over the past twenty years drawn from the eleven CD’s she’s released since 1992. Katherine’s songs tend to find the fun in everyday family life, along with softer inspirational songs. At the end of March this year, Katherine guest DJed the Hilltown Family Variety Show, sharing her life journey in song. The show gives listeners a glimpse into Katherine’s experiences, and features songs from this new album, including “In the Backseat,” “Goosebumps,” and “Imagination.” She also shared the video for her song, “All the Way Around the World,” which you can check out along with the podcast.

 

Ticket Giveaway: First Annual Hilltown Bluegrass Festival

Enter to win a 4-pack of tickets to see…

First Annual Hilltown Bluegrass Festival
Three Sisters Sanctuary in Goshen
Sunday, June 10th from 2-7pm

First Annual Hilltown Bluegrass Festival at  Three Sisters Sanctuary in Goshen on Sunday, June 10th from 2-7pm. Enter to win a 4-pack of tickets! Deadline to enter to win is Friday, 06/08/12 @ 7pm (EST). Details below.

The First Annual Hilltown Bluegrass Festival will take place at the Three Sisters Sanctuary in Goshen, MA on Sunday, June 10, 2012 from 2-7pm… and Hilltown Families has a 4-pack of ticket to giveaway to one lucky family!

Win the tickets and take your family and friends to a fun new music festival in the Hilltowns! Deadline to enter to win is Friday, 06/08/12 @ 7pm (EST). Details below.

ABOUT FIRST ANNUAL HILLTOWN BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL

The festival is a fundraiser to benefit the Hilltown Community Development Corporation (CDC). It will feature live bluegrass and old-time music by New England bands.  Headlining the festival is Western Mass-based ‘Appalachian Still‘, a bluegrass and old-time band formed in 2005. While rooted in bluegrass and old-time traditions, Appalachian Still draws significant influence from classic rock, blues, folk, and country. They have two albums to their credit, “Lost and Found” released in 2007 and “Feelin’ Alive” in 2010. Joining Appalachian Still is ‘Acoustic Brew‘, playing what they affectionately refer to as “Brewgrass – a bluegrass-infused blend of original compositions, traditional songs, and old school country and blues, generously seasoned with covers of classic tunes from bands like the Grateful Dead, Rolling Stones, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, The Band, Fred Eaglesmith and more.” Also joining the line-up are bands Sweetheart Mountain and Rocky Hill.

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a 4-pack of tickets to the First Annual Hilltown Bluegrass Festival at the Three Sisters Sanctuary in Goshen, MA on Sunday, June 10th from 2-7pm is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)!

To enter to win simply:

  1. CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below;
  2. TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES HAS CONNECTED YOU TO THE HILLTOWNS OVER THE YEARS below (one entry per household); and be sure to tell us your
  3. FULL NAME and where you
  4. LIVE (TOWN/STATE), Must include your town to be eligible.
  5. ACCURATE EMAIL IN THE EMAIL FIELD BELOW (we never share your email address with a third party).
  6. We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Friday, 06/08/12 @ 7pm (EST)

Tickets for the show are $15 per person with kids 12 and under free. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.appalachianstill.com. The Three Sisters Sanctuary is an outdoor event space located at 188 Cape Street, Route 112, in Goshen.

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Michael Franti and Spearhead at the Calvin Theatre in Northampton

Enter to win a pair of tickets to see…

Michael Franti and Spearhead
Calvin Theatre in Northampton
Thursday, May 31st at 8pm

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! You pay for the sitter, we’ll pay for the tickets!

This month we are pleased to offer a chance to win a pairs of tickets to see Michael Franti and Spearhead at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Thursday, May 31st, 2012. Opening act, Zach Heckendorf.

Win the tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is Monday, 05/28/12 @ 7pm (EST). More details below.

ABOUT MICHAEL FRANTI AND SPEARHEAD

For over two decades, the Bay Area born Michael Franti has been bringing our world exceptionally powerful, deeply felt music. Franti first formed the punk band The Beatnigs while studying at the University of San Francisco, and later the far more hip hop-inflected The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy. In the mid-Nineties, Franti created Spearhead. Frantis music has always reflected his status as a musical citizen of the world. The Sound Of Sunshine — the inspired and inspiring new album by Michael Franti  Spearhead — is a kind of musical sun shower, a bright, beautiful and often buoyant song cycle created to bring all kinds of listeners a sense of hope during rough and rainy times for so many in our world. Arguably the most cohesive, romantic and life-affirming album that Franti and Spearhead have ever made, The Sound Of Sunshine reflects the fact that, as Franti puts it, with time, you get a better sense who you are and how to put together all your musical passions into your own sound. – michaelfranti.com

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a pairs of tickets to see the Michael Franti and Spearhead at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA at 8pm on Thursday, May 31st, 2012, is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)!

To enter to win simply:

  1. CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below;
  2. TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES HAS CONNECTED  YOU WITH YOUR COMMUNITY OVER THE YEARS  below (one entry per household); and be sure to tell us your
  3. FULL NAME and where you
  4. LIVE (TOWN/STATE), Must include your town to be eligible.
  5. ACCURATE EMAIL IN THE EMAIL FIELD BELOW (we never share your email address with a third party).
  6. We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Monday, 05/28/12 @ 7pm (EST).

If you don’t win, tickets can be purchased at the Northampton Box Office, 76 Main Street, by phone at 413-586-8686 and online at IHEG.com.

PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Fab Faux at the Calvin Theatre in Northampton

Enter to win a pair of tickets to see…

The Fab Faux: A Mixed Bag of Beatles Favorites
Calvin Theatre in Northampton
Saturday, April 28th at 8pm

This is the band to see if you want to know what it might be like if the Beatles toured today. Not like any other The Fab Faux are committed to the accurate reproduction of The Beatles’ repertoire. If you want to hear songs recreated that were written, arranged, and performed with a genius rarely heard in today’s music scene; if you’re too young to know what all the fuss is about; or you just want to see one of the best live rock bands around today—here’s your chance.

Hilltown Families and Iron Horse Entertainment Group have partnered up to offer a chance to win free tickets to see adult venues in the Pioneer Valley for a PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT! You pay for the sitter, we’ll pay for the tickets!

This spring  we have a pair of tickets to giveaway to see The Fab Faux: A Mixed Bag of Beatles Favorites at the Calvin Theatre in Northampton, MA on Saturday, April 28th at 8pm! Win the tickets and take your spouse, partner or good friend for a night out. Deadline to enter to win is 04/25/12 @ 7pm (EST). Details below.

ABOUT THE FAB FAUX

Formed in 1998, The Fab Faux treat the seminal music of the Beatles with unwavering respect through painstaking recreations of the songs (with emphasis on the later works never performed live by the Beatles). Far beyond a cover band, they play the music of The Beatles so impeccably that one must experience it to believe it. Calling them, the greatest Beatles cover band  without the wigs, Rolling Stone senior editor David Fricke wrote, the Faux invigorate the artistry of even the Beatles most intricate studio masterpieces with top chops and Beatlemaniac glee. Approaching the songs with the intent of playing them live as accurately in musical reading and in spirit as possible, The Fauxs breathtaking performances tend to dispel all concertgoers previous notions of a Beatles tribute act.

Calling them, “the greatest Beatles cover band – without the wigs,” Rolling Stone senior editor David Fricke wrote, “the Faux invigorate the artistry of even the Beatles’ most intricate studio masterpieces with top chops and Beatlemaniac glee.” Approaching the songs with the intent of playing them live as accurately in musical reading and in spirit as possible, The Faux’s breathtaking performances tend to dispel all concertgoers’ previous notions of a Beatles tribute act. “The Fab Faux have the hardest job in the history of R & R and they pull it off damn well. All rock bands want to be like the Beatles; these guys have the nerve to BE the Beatles. Amazingly, they’re so good at it you learn new things about the originals” – Dave Marsh, legendary Rock Critic and Sirius Radio Host. – www.thefabfaux.com

HOW TO WIN

Your chance to win a pairs of tickets to see the The Fab Faux: A Mixed Bag of Beatles Favorites at the Calvin Theatre in Northampton on Saturday, April 28th at 8pm, is as easy as 1-2-3 (4)!

To enter to win simply:

  1. CONSIDER SHARING ON FACEBOOK by selecting the Facebook icon below;
  2. TELL US HOW HILLTOWN FAMILIES AS CONNECTED  YOU WITH YOUR COMMUNITY OVER THE YEARS  below (one entry per household); and be sure to tell us your
  3. FULL NAME and where you
  4. LIVE (TOWN/STATE), Must include your town to be eligible.
  5. ACCURATE EMAIL IN THE EMAIL FIELD BELOW (we never share your email address with a third party).
  6. We’ll randomly draw a winner and will share the results below.

IT’S THAT SIMPLE! — Deadline is Wednesday, 04/25/12 @ 7pm (EST).

If you don’t win, tickets can be purchased at the Northampton Box Office, 76 Main Street, by phone at 413-586-8686 and online at IHEG.com.

6 More Reasons to Spend Your Saturday at the Hilltown Spring Festival!

An Eclectic Mix of Dancing, Creating and Workshops
at the 5th Annual Hilltown Spring Festival
Saturday, May 14th at Cummington Fairgrounds

The Hilltown Spring Festival already sounds so wonderful, right? With it’s 3 stages of music, including a family stage, educational opportunities mixed into the fun, frolic, solar power and delicious local food with an international flare… who would need another excuse to go? We’ll there are plenty! Plenty! Including a hot air balloon launch in the evening, Morris dancers through the day, sustainability vendors, kids-made craft bazaar, solar powered stage, music giveaway, artisans, blacksmith demo, horse trainer, petting zoo… my goodness, someone stop me!  Too late… look what else you can find at this year’s Hilltown Spring Festival:

EarthSpirit of Worthington leads the Maypole dance again this year at the Hilltown Spring Festival. Join them at 12:30pm on Saturday, May 14th at the Cummington Fairgrounds to celebrate spring and community! (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

12:30pm ❁ MAYPOLE & MAYPOLE DANCE

Maypole and a maypole dance return to the festival this year, lead by EarthSpirit of Worthington, MA. Dancing the maypole is a traditional way of welcoming in the spring throughout northern Europe. At the time of the Earth’s greatest fertility, winding the ribbons around the pole is a way of connecting with the community as it emerges from the cold of winter, and of celebrating the coming together of Earth and sky to create new life. The colors and flowers of a maypole are expressions of gratitude for the warmth and joy of springtime. On the lawn at 12:3pm, followed by Morris Dancing!

1:15pm & 2:15pm ❁ DRUMMING WORKSHOPS

At 1:15pm percussionist Tony Vacca will offer a hands-on percussion workshop! In this “hands-on” session, Tony will apply over two decades of experience as a drummer/composer, and over a dozen trips to West Africa, to create and teach a percussion composition. He’ll use djembe drums, gongs, rattles, an orchestra of tuned bells, and a wide variety of other percussion instruments, involving combinations of rhythms that connect African, Caribbean and American traditions.  Tony is an innovative American percussionist with Jazz and World Music roots going back to 1972 and has created a unique blend of rhythm, word, and drum that has come to be the signature of his workshops.

Then at 2:15pm join Gaia Roots co-founder and drummer/singer Aimee Gelinas and dancer Marie Georgefils in an intergenerational and interactive Afro-Caribbean drum, song and dance workshop featuring music from Cuba, Haiti and Puerto Rico.

11:30am & 1:15pm ❁ INTERGENERATIONAL YOGA

Prakasa Yoga Studio of Goshen, MA will offer an interactive intergenerational yoga demo of Anusara Yoga, an integrated yoga system that invites you to joyfully inhabit our body. At Spring Festival they invite all to come stretch and play in postures that are accessible to everyone, of any age. Fun partner yoga and group poses will encourage an intergenerational participation in yoga. On the lawn at 11:30am and 1:15pm.

2:30pm ❁ RIVER POETRY WORKSHOP

Write! Draw! Make a Show with Piti Theatre Company at 2:30pm. Shelburne’s Piti Theatre Co. is getting ready for a community-powered performance at Riverfest in Shelburne Falls on June 11. Drop into their river poetry workshop to write/illustrate river-inspired poems and build props for the show. You can even sign up to be a dancer/actor! All poetry will also be displayed by Hilltown CDC and at Riverfest. For ages 5 – 105.

4pm ❁ KIDS SONGWRITING WORKSHOP

Family musician, Mister G, will offer a songwriting workshop, Who Writes Songs? You Do! at 4pm. Mister G empowers students to write their own songs and demystifies the writing process. Using examples from his albums, Mister G illustrates how great songs, like stories, follow a narrative form with a beginning, middle, and end. Employing basic concepts in literacy, students brainstorm specific imaginative details to create compelling characters and events, and then translate these ideas into lyrics. Using this student-generated material, Mister G demonstrates how a range of musical styles – including funk, rock, reggae, bluegrass, and jazz –can be paired with lyrics to invent a fully-formed new song.

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Hilltown Spring Festival is Fun & Educational

Learn About Our Solar System, Discover Musical Instruments, Identify Wildlife, Recycling Activities and More at the Hilltown Spring Festival

Saturday, May 14th from 10am-7pm at the Cummington Fairgrounds

Arunah Hill astronomers will lead a scale model solar system walk at the Hilltown Spring Festival, demonstrating how large our solar system is, and how very small we are! Come learn, explore and have a great time: Saturday, May 14th from 10am-7pm at the Cummington Fairgrounds

Not only will families have a fabulous time being entertain by great music on 3 stages during the 5th Annual Hilltown Spring Festival, they will also have several educational opportunities throughout the day!  Here are just a few highlights:

SOLAR OBSERVANCES

Arunah Hill Natural Science Center, an educational facility for astronomy, science, and nature located in Cummington, will be at the 5th Annual Hilltown Spring Festival with telescopes and a meteorite display!  Astronomers will be on-site with solar-filtered telescopes for fair-goers to safely view sunspots and solar prominences under the guidance of experienced solar observers. The Arunah Hill staff will also be displaying a collection of meteorites, including a 120 pound iron-nickel meteorite that fell to earth more than 5,000 years ago. — arunah.org

MUSICAL PETTING ZOO

Josh Watchtel from Radio Free Earth will be visiting the Grasshoppa Arts Initiative booth from 1-4pm with a “Musical Petting Zoo.” Josh will have a display of a variety of instruments, including a mountain dulcimer, Turkish choombush, Moroccan bongoes, guitar, space crickets, melodica, one-stringed plastic bottle plucker, and a few other instruments.  He will be sharing their history and showing kids how to make music on each one.  Families are encouraged to stop in to learn about these instruments and get a hands-on experience. — grasshoppaarts.org

SOLAR SYSTEM WALK

Arunah Hill astronomers will lead a walk to create a scale model of the solar system. Starting with the Sun scaled down to the size of a volleyball, the walk will place appropriately sized planets at the correct “scale” distance from the sun. Earth will be the size of a peppercorn, some 26 paces away from the Sun. How far away will Pluto be? The Scale Model Solar System Walk will demonstrate how large our solar system is! It is appropriate for all ages, for anyone capable of walking across the solar system. The Solar System Walks will take place at 11:45am and 2:15pm.  — arunah.org

NATURE ART & OBSERVANCES

Earthwork programs of Williamsburg will be offering several educational opportunities during the festival. Learn the art of fibers and make a hand crafted gift, experience the lost art of firemaking with hands-on demo, and increase your awareness of wild life. Check their schedule when you arrive for several activities, including: Native Crafts and Skills Working with Fibers; The Art of Making Fire; The Art of Fox Walking and Owl Vision; and The New Bird Watching and Storytelling. — earthworkprograms.com

IDENTIFYING & LIVING WITH WILDLIFE

Judy Pasko from Cummington Wildlife invites families to stop by her booth for wildlife games and learning.  She will be offering two games, one involving “match the pawprints to the animal” and a wildlife trivia question game for all age ranges. The primary mission of Cummington Wildlife is to give treatment to orphaned, injured, or ill wildlife with the goal of releasing the animal back into the wild. Families can stop by throughout the day to learn about communities living with wildlife. — cummingtonwildlife.com

LITERACY

Hampshire Regional’s Coordinated Family & Community Engagement Outreach booth will be promoting literacy by offering free books for kids and a springtime art activity for them to “make and take.” Balloon sculptor from Ed Popielarczyk’s Magical Moments will be there to entertain the kids while they pick out a book and make art. — In addition to supporting early and family literacy, families can find out about local resources that assist in accessing a variety of services, including vouchers to help pay for child care, contact information for area child care providers and medical professionals, and referral information for Early Intervention programs, along with a free Parent Resource Manual that highlight many area services for children and families.

RECYCLING THROUGH CRAFTS

The RH Conwell Community Education Center invites families to stop in to make crafts out of recycled materials, a simple opportunity for kids to learn about recycling while celebrating their inner artist. — For 70 years this hilltown school located in Worthington, has thrived on a combination of widespread community support and a strong belief that it takes an entire community to raise and educate children.  The genesis of this view stems from the teachings of Russell H. Conwell, the founder of Temple University, who was born in Worthington in 1843. — www.conwellcec.org

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The FTC Criticize Marketers of Violet Music, Movies and Video Games

FTC Renews Call to Entertainment Industry to Curb Marketing of Violent Entertainment to Children

Marketers of violent music, movies, and video games can do more to restrict the promotion of these products to children, according to the seventh in a series of Federal Trade Commission reports on marketing violent entertainment to children.

“The Commission has been reviewing and reporting on the movie, music, and video game industries’ advertising and marketing practices relating to violent entertainment for 10 years now,” noted FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz in a separate statement accompanying the report. “Despite considerable improvements, the self-regulatory systems are far from perfect.” He also emphasized that “in the future, it will be particularly important to address the challenges presented by emerging technologies – such as mobile gaming – that are quickly changing the ways that children access entertainment.”

The FTC’s report states that the music industry still has not adopted objective marketing standards limiting ad placement for explicit-content music. As a result, the industry still advertises music labeled with a Parental Advisory Label (PAL) on television shows viewed by a substantial number of children. Music retailers routinely sell labeled music to unaccompanied teens.

The report also finds that movie studios intentionally market PG-13 movies to children under 13, and the movie industry does not have explicit standards in place to restrict this practice. The growing practice of releasing unrated DVDs undermines the rating system, and confuses parents.

Both the video game and movie industries can do more to limit ad placement on Web sites that disproportionately attract children and teens, according to the report.

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Good German Food!

Notes From Nan
BY HF Contributing Writer, Nan Parati

(c) Hilltown FamiliesGreet God!

It is not yet Oktober, it is but now Fall und we have indeed FallFood in the Heads!

I write this as if I it in German writing were, therewith you the full Effect of Germany have can!

So! (You know, that Germans frequently with Exclamation Points speak!) We have yes for you (plural) this week German Food!

Unfortunately have we still not Beer by Elmer, and so that must you yourself bring! We have however very good Food that you of Germany und Oktoberfest remember will!

(Photo: Sunflowers in Plainfield, MA) Read the rest of this entry »

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