Weekdays in Western MA: July 16th – 20th, 2018

Weekdays in Western MA: July 16th – 20th, 2018

Weekday community-based educational opportunities can be found throughout the four counties of Western MA all week long! Each weekday we feature community-based educational opportunities that can be selected to support the interests and education of self-directed teens, homeschoolers and life-long learners.

Select the day of the week and find events that support your interests through community engagement!

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for our comprehensive list, including ongoing learning and play opportunities for younger children and intergenerational community events.


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HFVS Summer Family Fun Episode with Guest DJ, Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

Summer Family Fun Episode with Guest DJ, Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam

Guest DJ Jason Didner invites you for an hour of “fun in the sun” themed music by today’s great children’s musicians and a few well renowned classic rock and reggae acts. You’ll get to know more about the “Jersey Shore Sound” that Jason and band are proud to call an influence. You’ll catch the beach party spirit that’s on full display from Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, an energy that also shows up in tracks by Brady Rymer and Yosi. You’ll enjoy the feel-good sounds of Jimmy Cliff, Suzi Shelton, Miss Nina and more. Whether you’re headed for the beach, the lake or the pool, this episode can be your summer soundtrack! — junglegymjam.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
July 14 & 15, 2018
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: The sun is out and Jessi and Squeaks are ready to perform all kinds of fun outdoor science experiments! Let’s take a look at some of the fun activities they’ve done before, like making a kite, building a solar tower, blowing bubbles, and of course, making ice cream!” – SciShow Kids


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Brady Rymer and the Little Band That Could – “Get This Party Started” [Just Say Hi]
  • Justin Roberts – “Kickboard Baby, Yeah” [Pop Fly]
  • Suzi Shelton – “It’s a Beautiful Day” [Smile in my Heart]
  • Jimmy Cliff – “I Can See Clearly Now”” [We All Are One…The Best of Jimmy Cliff]
  • Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam – “Day at the Beach” [Lollipop Motel]
  • Baze and His Silly Friends – “Silly Sandy Shark’s Swinging Summer Surf Song” [Best Day Ever]
  • Yosi and the Superdads – “B-E-A-C-H” [Super Kids Rock]
  • Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes – “Havin’ a Party” [The Best of Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes]
  • Princess Katie & Racer Steve “Surf Radio” [Tiny Cool]
  • Princess Katie & Racer Steve “Sand in my Sandwich” [Tiny Cool]
  • Miss Nina and the Jumping Jacks “Sunshine Blue Skies” [Every Day’s Your Birthday]
  • Chicago, “Saturday in the Park” [Chicago V]
  • Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam, “Stay in the Pool” [Everyone’s Invited!]
  • Hullabaloo, “Waterfront” [I Chew]
  • Rolie Polie Guacamole, “Swim Like the Dolphin” [Time for Hummus]
  • Darlene Graham and the Shades of Green Band, “I’m Going to the Beach” [Big Hugs from Mama.”
  • Laurie Berkner Band, “Under a Shady Tree” [The Best of the Laurie Berkner Band]

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Recap Map: Western MA Weekend Summary & Family Guide for July 14th & 15th, 2018

Here’s a recap of news and information posted on Hilltown Families this past week, along with a map for finding out what’s happening this weekend and next week throughout Western MA!

MAP

Peruse our list of Suggested Events for July 14th – 20th, 2018 for a comprehensive list of events happening throughout the four counties of Western MA, including Bulletin Board Announcements, Ongoing Story Hours & Playgroups and the Hilltown Family Variety Show.

Also, check our monthly column, Berkshire Family Fun, for a list of premier educational, cultural highlights in Berkshire County for families.

After-School Classes & Enrichment Programs

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space.

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space. Our community is rich in after-school learning opportunities to supplement the interests of our children, teens, and life-long learners. We are putting together a directory of after-school & weekend classes and enrichment programs happening across Western Massachusetts to be published on our web site later this month and featured throughout the school year. If you have a class or program you would like to have included in our directory, contact us at sales@hilltownfamilies.org to learn about our advertising options and sponsorship packages.

 

advertise with Hilltown Families

LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 14th – 20th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

RECAP

FIVE FROM THE ARCHIVES

  1. Time to Talk: Summer Language Stimulation
  2. Q&A: Are Your Kids Still in Diapers? What Do They Swim In?
  3. Literary Guide for Lisa Campbell Ernst’s “Sam Johnson and the Blue Ribbon Quilt”
  4. Local Agricultural Fairs Showcase Rich Local Heritage
  5. Oak & Acorn: Basil Pesto & Peas

RECAP MAP SPONSOR

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Suggested Events for July 14th – 20th, 2018

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

To find out about more event, be sure to visit our Suggest an Event Bulletin Board to see what our readers have recently shared! Have an event to share? Feel encouraged to self-post community events here at any time!

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our Suggest An Event bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness, and costs before attending.

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools, and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Click HERE to find out more.

We’re Spreading Wellness Across Western MA!

Are you in the business of improving people’s physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual health and well-being? Hilltown Families is offering service providers a chance to spread the word about your services with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. We are connecting Western MA families with the health and wellness resources we need, while also supporting the businesses that make our local economy thrive. If you, or someone you know, would like to be included in this directory, click HERE to find more information or to fill out our easy sign-up form. You can also reach out to our helpful Program Manager, Courtney Supple-Benoit, with any questions. We encourage our burgeoning entrepreneurs, small business-owners, non-profit managers, and even our large institutional neighbors to reach out and get connected with us – and families throughout Western MA!

After-School Classes & Enrichment Programs

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space.

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space. Our community is rich in after-school learning opportunities to supplement the interests of our children, teens, and life-long learners. We are putting together a directory of after-school & weekend classes and enrichment programs happening across Western Massachusetts to be published on our web site later this month and featured throughout the school year. If you have a class or program you would like to have included in our directory, contact us at sales@hilltownfamilies.org to learn about our advertising options and sponsorship packages.

Bulletin Board

The New England Air Museum’s Soar into Summer Fun programming has begun! Enjoy eight weeks of interactive activities for children, families, and aviation enthusiasts of all ages. Daily programs include climb-aboard experiences in real aircraft; hands-on Build & Fly Challenges; interactive Flight Science Demonstrations; virtual flight simulators; and more. The Museum, located in Windsor Locks, CT, is open daily from 10am-5pm. Admission is $15 for ages 15+, $14 for seniors 65+ and $10 for ages 4-14. Museum members and children under 3 are admitted free; discounted admission is available for veterans and active duty military personnel. For more information about specific activities and program schedules, visit www.neam.org or call (860) 623-3305.

July 6 – Aug 5

The 2018 KO FESTIVAL OF PERFORMANCE has been curated on the theme of “RADICAL ACTS.” It’s all original work, created by the artists who come to Ko. From July 6 – Aug. 5, you can meet a group of 60s radicals, hear a true tale of going AWOL on a shamanic trip in the Amazonian jungle, witness a call to action by a woman whose encounters with bears – both real & mythic, help her discover links between her ill health & the environment — and we close with a show about the courage to create. Post-show discussions follow the shows & we’d like them to be intergenerational. Teens, Adults, Seniors – JOIN US! Tix for shows + our STORY SLAM & WORKSHOPS are available online at kofest.com & at the Box Office 413-542-3750. Special prices for SNAP/EBT cardholders.

July 21, 22, 25

PaintBox Theatre—the Valley’s theatre of imagination and improvisation—presents Pirates! They swash. They buckle. They crack very bad jokes. Last summer’s cast of corsairs will bring even more silliness and pirate antics to the shores of the PaintBox stage. Be prepared to sing, dance, and roll your arrrrs like a pirate. Captain Braidbeard says, “Mateys, dress on up and sail on down to PaintBox Theatre.” Join us for Pirate Day on Sun. July 22 after the 10:30am show! Shows are Sat. July 21, 10:30am & 1pm, Sun. July 22, 10:30am at Easthampton’s Williston Theatre and Wed. July 25, 10:30am at the Easthampton Band Shell. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets. Season Tickets: $24. Group discounts (12+): $7. paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

This summer, enjoy the beautiful outdoors at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA. Bobbie’s Meadow is a new space that invites guests to connect and be inspired by art and nature. Read with Bright Spot Therapy Dogs! Get moving with Little Kids Yoga, or join Creative Movement with the Center Dance Studio. Plus special storytimes, art making and a new outdoor scavenger hunt. Bobbie’s Meadow, a new space to explore, relax and enjoy. The museum is open Mondays in July and August; see carlemuseum.org for days, times and sign up information. All activities are free with Museum Admission. Become a Member and come for free every day!

Add your camp

advertise with Hilltown FamiliesOur summer camp guide is up! Check out our featured post, 2018 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a list that will wow and dazzle you! Summer opportunities featured range from music, art, farming, theater, dance, science, nature, sports, speaking, yoga, rock ‘n roll… to traditional summer day or overnight camps/programs! There’s something for all ages, toddlers to teens! Check it out and start making your summer plans! — Do you have a summer camp or program you’d like to have included in our comprehensive list? Find out how you can submit your listing HERE.

Add your school

Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer camp, class, community event, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, after-school class, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter, reaching thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at at sales@hilltownfamilies.org.

Become a Contributing WriterJOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community-building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish, and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to info@hilltownfamilies.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 14th – 20th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Read the rest of this entry »

Literature in Context: A Community-Based Education Guide to Julia Alvarez’s Return to Sender

Literature in Context: A Community-Based Education Guide to Julia Alvarez’s Return to Sender

Download the Learning Map, which links this book to local opportunities for community-based learning.

Tyler has grown up in rural Vermont on his family’s dairy farm – like many New England fairy farms, the Paquette family has been farming their land for generations. The farm struggles with the same challenges that every small New England dairy encounters, but the real challenge comes when Tyler’s father is seriously injured in a tractor accident and is unable to work. Without the help of his late grandfather to run the farm, Tyler’s family finds itself in a difficult position: hire migrant workers to keep the farm running, or lose the farm – and their family history with it. Read the rest of this entry »

Weekdays in Western MA: July 9th – 13th, 2018

Weekdays in Western MA:
July 9th – 13th, 2018

Weekday community-based educational opportunities can be found throughout the four counties of Western MA all week long! Each weekday we feature community-based educational opportunities that can be selected to support the interests and education of self-directed teens, homeschoolers and life-long learners.

Select the day of the week and find events that support your interests through community engagement!

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for our comprehensive list, including ongoing learning and play opportunities for younger children and intergenerational community events.


See your banner here! Sponsor Weekdays in Western MA!

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HFVS Songwriting Episode with Guest DJ, Joanie Leeds (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

Songwriting Episode with Guest DJ, Joanie Leeds

As multi-award winning singer/songwriter Joanie Leeds hosts The Hilltown Family Variety Show for the third time, she challenged herself by finding the “Songs That Make You Go Hmmmm, curating The Songwriting Show.”  While writing tunes for her band, Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights, Joanie has always been drawn to “play on word” songs. In her songwriting themed show, Joanie picked tunes that concentrate on “idioms,” “creative word play,” and songs about songwriting hoping listeners will be inspired to create songs of their own. — www.joanieleeds.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
July 7 & 8, 2018
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: “Is songwriting really that complicated? Children’s rock performer Ralph Covert shares 4 simple steps to being a songwriter. To show how easy it can be, he creates one live on stage with the audience’s participation.” – 4 simple steps to writing a song | Ralph Covert | TEDxNaperville


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights – “Happy As A Clam” (What A Zoo)
  • Dog on Fleas – “Palindrome” (Buy One Get One Flea)
  • Billy Jonas Band – “What Kind of Bear are You”  (Build it Back Again)
  • Trout Fishing in America – “18 Wheels on the Big Rig” (Family Music Party)
  • The Merry Macs – “Mairzy Doats” (Classic Years of the Merry Macs)
  • Cat Doorman – “So Many Words” (Kick Out the Jammies!)
  • They Might Be Giants – “I C U” (Here Come the ABCs)
  • Randy Kaplan – “Hockey Puck” (Jam on Rye)
  • Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights – “The World is Your Oyster” (Good Egg)
  • Steve Songs – “Song without a Rhyme”  (Orangutan Van)
  • The Bazillions – “Similes and Metaphors”  (Heads or Tales)
  • The Verve Pipe – “You Can Write a Song”  (Are We There Yet)
  • Lori Henriques – “Vocabulary”  (The World is a Curious Place to Live)
  • Key Wilde & Mister Clarke – “Animal Alphabet”  (Pleased to Meet You)
  • Hullabaloo – “Dad upside Down”  (Raise a Ruckus)
  • Miss Nina & The Jumping Jacks– Colors of You (Everyday’s Your Birthday)
  • Joanie Leeds & The Nightlights – “Hello, Goodbye, Shalom” (Meshugana)

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Recap Map: Western MA Weekend Summary & Family Guide for July 7th & 8th, 2018

Here’s a recap of news and information posted on Hilltown Families this past week, along with a map for finding out what’s happening this weekend and next week throughout Western MA!

MAP

Peruse our list of Suggested Events for July 7th – 13th, 2018 for a comprehensive list of events happening throughout the four counties of Western MA, including Bulletin Board Announcements, Ongoing Story Hours & Playgroups and the Hilltown Family Variety Show.

Also, check our monthly column, Berkshire Family Fun, for a list of premier educational, cultural highlights in Berkshire County for families. Plus, our bi-weekly column, Learn Local. Play Local., is out this week! It provides you with 11 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Singularity to Anthropocene. Puppets to Drums. and more!

NEW MARKETING OPPORTUNITY

In an effort to connect families with health and wellness resources in the region, weʼre offering service providers a chance to partner with Hilltown Families in your marketing with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. Click HERE to learn how you can share your business with thousands of families throughout Western MA!

advertise with Hilltown Families

LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 7th – 13th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

RECAP

FIVE FROM THE ARCHIVES

  1. Hand Clapping Games: Summer & Schoolyard Creative Free Play that Supports Learning
  2. Thunderstorms: Those Rumbling Science Shows
  3. Sing About Science and Math
  4. The Dinner Table: Letting Go of Perfect!
  5. Literary Guide for Mildred Pitts Walter’s “Alec’s Primer”

RECAP MAP SPONSOR

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Find out how you can be a sponsor too!

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11 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Singularity to Anthropocene. Puppets to Drums…

Owls are featured heavily in mythology and folklore from around the world. Ancient peoples had many, often contradictory, views on these mysterious creatures.

Literature in translation to Rube Goldberg Machines. Singularity to Anthropocene. Puppets to drums. These are just a few of the community-based learning highlights we’re featuring this week!

Peruse our list below and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play!

Featured community highlight this week:

THE WORLD OF OWLS
In ancient Greece, the owl was sacred to the goddess of wisdom Athene, who favored the bird after it chased away the mischievous crow. Among the ancient Celtic people of the British Isles, the owl was known as “cailleach,” or “old woman.” Associated with the Crone figure from the Celtic Triple Goddess, the owl was seen as a psychopomp, or guide to the land of the dead. In “The World of Owls,” on Monday, July 9, 6:30-7:30pm, learn all about the natural and cultural history of the owl, including some of the ways that this bird has been misunderstood. This presentation is appropriate for children ages 6 and above. Westhampton Public Library. 1 North Road, Westhampton, MA (FREE)

Read the rest of this entry »

Suggested Events for July 7th – 13th, 2018

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

To find out about more event, be sure to visit our Suggest an Event Bulletin Board to see what our readers have recently shared! Have an event to share? Feel encouraged to self-post community events here at any time!

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our Suggest An Event bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness, and costs before attending.

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools, and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Click HERE to find out more.

After-School Classes & Enrichment Programs

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2017-2018 directory! Reserve your space.

Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2018-2019 directory! Reserve your space. Our community is rich in after-school learning opportunities to supplement the interests of our children, teens, and life-long learners. We are putting together a directory of after-school & weekend classes and enrichment programs happening across Western Massachusetts to be published on our web site later this month and featured throughout the school year. If you have a class or program you would like to have included in our directory, contact us at sales@hilltownfamilies.org to learn about our advertising options and sponsorship packages.

Bulletin Board

The New England Air Museum’s Soar into Summer Fun programming has begun! Enjoy eight weeks of interactive activities for children, families, and aviation enthusiasts of all ages. Daily programs include climb-aboard experiences in real aircraft; hands-on Build & Fly Challenges; interactive Flight Science Demonstrations; virtual flight simulators; and more. The Museum, located in Windsor Locks, CT, is open daily from 10am-5pm. Admission is $15 for ages 15+, $14 for seniors 65+ and $10 for ages 4-14. Museum members and children under 3 are admitted free; discounted admission is available for veterans and active duty military personnel. For more information about specific activities and program schedules, visit www.neam.org or call (860) 623-3305.

July 6 – Aug 5

The 2018 KO FESTIVAL OF PERFORMANCE has been curated on the theme of “RADICAL ACTS.” It’s all original work, created by the artists who come to Ko. From July 6 – Aug. 5, you can meet a group of 60s radicals, hear a true tale of going AWOL on a shamanic trip in the Amazonian jungle, witness a call to action by a woman whose encounters with bears – both real & mythic, help her discover links between her ill health & the environment — and we close with a show about the courage to create. Post-show discussions follow the shows & we’d like them to be intergenerational. Teens, Adults, Seniors – JOIN US! Tix for shows + our STORY SLAM & WORKSHOPS are available online at kofest.com & at the Box Office 413-542-3750. Special prices for SNAP/EBT cardholders.

July 7, 8, 11

PaintBox Theatre—the Valley’s theatre of imagination and improvisation—presents Tarzan! Renowned researcher Jane—assisted by an audience of scientists—is searching for the mysterious, elusive Tarzan. Is he really the king of the jungle? Not even close. Tarzan is a friend of all the wild beast youngsters, teaching the little ones how to swim, climb, and avoid danger. When Tarzan wants to brag, shout, and fly through the jungle, the older ones just play along. Shows are Sat. & Sun. July 7 & 8, 10:30am & 1pm at Easthampton’s Williston Theatre and Wed. July 11, 10:30am at the Easthampton Band Shell. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets. Season Tickets: $24. Group discounts (12+): $7. paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

July 13-15

Western Massachusetts’ most family friendly music festival happens at Greenfield Community College July 13-15 in Greenfield, MA. Kids 10 and under are always free. In addition to an incredible lineup of music for adults featuring Michael Franti & Spearhead, Old Crow Medicine Show, Dr. Dog, Josh Ritter, Lucy Dacus, Femi Kuti, and I’m With Her, Green River Festival is packed with activities for children and families. Come hang out with Curious George or Big Nazo’s hilarious larger than life characters. There is also music for the entire family on the Art Garden stage, Flying High Frisbee Dogs, crafts at The Art Garden tent, a Mardi Gras Parade, tethered hot air balloon rides, a swimming shuttle, and carnival games at The Art Garden Arcade.

Add your camp

advertise with Hilltown FamiliesOur summer camp guide is up! Check out our featured post, 2018 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a list that will wow and dazzle you! Summer opportunities featured range from music, art, farming, theater, dance, science, nature, sports, speaking, yoga, rock ‘n roll… to traditional summer day or overnight camps/programs! There’s something for all ages, toddlers to teens! Check it out and start making your summer plans! — Do you have a summer camp or program you’d like to have included in our comprehensive list? Find out how you can submit your listing HERE.

Add your school

Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer camp, class, community event, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, after-school class, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter, reaching thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at at sales@hilltownfamilies.org.

Become a Contributing WriterJOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community-building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish, and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to info@hilltownfamilies.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 7th – 13th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Read the rest of this entry »

Moving, Sending, and Settling Energy: Family Exercises

Moving, Sending, and Settling Family Energy

Have you ever noticed that some individuals are grumpy and some are joyful? Is it mood or energy? Energy is ever-present, all around us, but the question is: how do we direct it? That’s what matters most. Pouring our attention into positive thoughts and actions creates powerfully important increases in energy and lifts many people around us. Charismatic people are enthusiastic and energetic. Enthusiasm is contagious and powerful, plus it heals! Our words and actions impact one another. What we do and what we say is where our control and magic lie.

That’s not to say we all have to be perfect, but rather to raise our awareness and pour our attention into positive thoughts and actions. None of my suggestions in this column are meant to replace medicine, therapy, or basic science. Energy medicine is a complementary method intended to enhance other approaches. My personal goal is to show all people the value of their hearts, and raise their awareness about what they already have to offer of themselves in the form energy, touch, compassion, and positivity. Read the rest of this entry »

Off the Mat: Fear Itself

Fear Itself

He’s hit 54 inches, or close enough for Six Flags safety standards. With his extra effort to stand tall – viola! – he’s cleared to ride Superman. As the train climbs and climbs that first hill, I gaze down at the beautiful, absolutely unobstructed view of the river 200 feet far below.

My stomach clenches. Hands clamp. Breath catches. Until I reminded myself – this is supposed to be fun. We pay for this fear! I exhale and enjoy the ride. Read the rest of this entry »

Weekdays in Western MA: July 2nd – 6th, 2018

Weekdays in Western MA:
July 2nd – 6th, 2018

Weekday community-based educational opportunities can be found throughout the four counties of Western MA all week long! Each weekday we feature community-based educational opportunities that can be selected to support the interests and education of self-directed teens, homeschoolers and life-long learners.

Select the day of the week and find events that support your interests through community engagement!

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for our comprehensive list, including ongoing learning and play opportunities for younger children and intergenerational community events.


See your banner here! Sponsor Weekdays in Western MA!

Save

Save

Save

Berkshire Family Fun: July 2018

Berkshire County Highlights for Families:
July 2018

Find out about community events and learning opportunities happening throughout Berkshire County for the month of July. We’ll be adding to this list as the month progresses, so be sure to check back each week.

If you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our Suggest An Event bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness, and costs before attending.

To find out what’s happening throughout the four counties of Western MA, check our comprehensive list of Weekly Suggested Events, published every Thursday! There you will also find our list of ongoing weekday playgroups, story hours and events both in Berkshire County and throughout the region.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at sales@hilltownfamilies.org.


Berkshire Family Fun, a project of Hilltown Families, is sponsored in part by MASS MoCA:

Berkshire Family Fun is also supported in part by grants from the Hinsdale/Peru, Mount Washington, Sandisfield, Washington, and Windsor Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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HFVS Songs About America Episode with Guest DJ, Rocknoceros (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Songs About America Episode with Guest DJ, Rocknoceros

Rocknoceros joins us as our Guest DJ with a Songs About America Episode. The musical trio explores their record collections to find tunes that celebrate, illustrate, and even criticize the Land of the Free.  Starting with the Chuck Berry-inspired rock ‘n roll of the 1950s, the selections quickly span the decades that followed and the various styles that continue to thrive today. Join in the fun as the band members discuss the people and places that help make American music what it is, with a few asides about lemonade stands and Irving Berlin. — rocknoceros.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 30 & July 1, 2018
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: This TEDx Talk, “How banning the African drum gave birth to American music” by Chris Johnson (TEDxHudson) explores how can we understand a culture if its very means of communication have been banned? Chris Johnson examines the role of the drum in African American Culture and American History.


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

Rocknoceros – “United States of America” [Rocknoceros]
Otis Redding – “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” [The Essentials: Otis Redding]
Ramones – “Rockaway Beach (Live)” [It’s Alive (Live)]
Recess Monkey – “Lemonade” [In Tents]
Chuck Berry – “Sweet Little Sixteen” [20th Century Masters – The Millenium Collection: The Best of Chuck Berry]
The Beach Boys – “Surfin’ U.S.A.” [Surfin’ USA]
Van Halen – “Dancing In the Street” [Diver Down]
Bruce Springsteen – “Born In the U.S.A.” [Born In the U.S.A.]
Rocknoceros – “Squeakers” [Plymouth Rockers]
Elton John – “Philadelphia Freedom” [Greatest Hits 1970-2002]
Grateful Dead – “U.S. Blues” [From the Mars Hotel]
Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer – “I’m My Own Grandpa (feat. Riders In the Sky)” [Dancin’ In the Kitchen]
Dwight Yoakam – “The Late Great Golden State” [21st Century Hits: Best of 2000-2012]
David Bowie – “Young Americans” [Young Americans]
Rocknoceros – “God Bless America” [Plymouth Rockers]

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Recap Map: Western MA Weekend Summary & Family Guide for June 30th & July 1st, 2018

Here’s a recap of news and information posted on Hilltown Families this past week, along with a map for finding out what’s happening this weekend and next week throughout Western MA!

MAP

Peruse our list of Suggested Events for June 30th – July 6th, 2018 for a comprehensive list of events happening throughout the four counties of Western MA, including Bulletin Board Announcements, Ongoing Story Hours & Playgroups, and the Hilltown Family Variety Show.

Also, check our monthly column, Berkshire Family Fun, for a list of premier educational, cultural highlights in Berkshire County for families.

We’re Spreading Health Across Western MA!

In an effort to connect families with health and wellness resources in the region, weʼre offering service providers a chance to partner with Hilltown Families in your marketing with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. Click HERE to learn how you can share your business with thousands of families throughout Western MA!

advertise with Hilltown Families

LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS

June 30th – July 6th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

RECAP

FIVE FROM THE ARCHIVES

  1. Time to Talk: 11 Apps to Support Children’s Language Skills
  2. Pressing Plants and Flowers Supports Summer Learning & Memories
  3. Literary Guide for Lois Lowry’s “Gathering Blue”
  4. Under the Hat: Counting and Key Changes
  5. Hindsight Parenting: The Bumpy Inconsistent Emotional Journey of Parenthood

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Suggested Events for June 30th – July 6th, 2018

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

To find out about more event, be sure to visit our Suggest an Event Bulletin Board to see what our readers have recently shared! Have an event to share? Feel encouraged to self-post community events here at any time!

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our Suggest An Event bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness, and costs before attending.

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools, and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Click HERE to find out more.

We’re Spreading Wellness Across Western MA!

Are you in the business of improving people’s physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual health and well-being? Hilltown Families is offering service providers a chance to spread the word about your services with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. We are connecting Western MA families with the health and wellness resources we need, while also supporting the businesses that make our local economy thrive. If you, or someone you know, would like to be included in this list, click HERE to find more information or to fill out our easy sign-up form. You can also reach out to our helpful Program Manager, Courtney Supple-Benoit, with any questions. We encourage our burgeoning entrepreneurs, small business-owners, non-profit managers, and even our large institutional neighbors to reach out and get connected with us – and families throughout Western MA!

Bulletin Board

July 7, 8, 11

PaintBox Theatre—the Valley’s theatre of imagination and improvisation—presents Tarzan! Renowned researcher Jane—assisted by an audience of scientists—is searching for the mysterious, elusive Tarzan. Is he really the king of the jungle? Not even close. Tarzan is a friend of all the wild beast youngsters, teaching the little ones how to swim, climb, and avoid danger. When Tarzan wants to brag, shout, and fly through the jungle, the older ones just play along. Shows are Sat. & Sun. July 7 & 8, 10:30am & 1pm at Easthampton’s Williston Theatre and Wed. July 11, 10:30am at the Easthampton Band Shell. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets. Season Tickets: $24. Group discounts (12+): $7. paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

July 13-15

Western Massachusetts’ most family friendly music festival happens at Greenfield Community College July 13-15 in Greenfield, MA. Kids 10 and under are always free. In addition to an incredible lineup of music for adults featuring Michael Franti & Spearhead, Old Crow Medicine Show, Dr. Dog, Josh Ritter, Lucy Dacus, Femi Kuti, and I’m With Her, Green River Festival is packed with activities for children and families. Come hang out with Curious George or Big Nazo’s hilarious larger than life characters. There is also music for the entire family on the Art Garden stage, Flying High Frisbee Dogs, crafts at The Art Garden tent, a Mardi Gras Parade, tethered hot air balloon rides, a swimming shuttle, and carnival games at The Art Garden Arcade.

July 30 – Aug 10

Learn, play & unplug at Storrowton Village’s Early American Summer Days for ages 7-12. Their unique hands-on approach to history will help 21st century children learn what it was like to be a kid in the 1800s. This year will feature two different sessions, each with fun and educational themed activities, making it possible for children to attend and enjoy both weeks. Register online or stop into the Museum Office to register in person. Invention Week runs from 7/30-8/3; Toys & Games Week from 8/6-8/10. For more information, visit storrowtonvillage.com/summer-days.

Add your camp

advertise with Hilltown FamiliesOur summer camp guide is up! Check out our featured post, 2018 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a list that will wow and dazzle you! Summer opportunities featured range from music, art, farming, theater, dance, science, nature, sports, speaking, yoga, rock ‘n roll… to traditional summer day or overnight camps/programs! There’s something for all ages, toddlers to teens! Check it out and start making your summer plans! — Do you have a summer camp or program you’d like to have included in our comprehensive list? Find out how you can submit your listing HERE.

Add your school

Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer camp, class, community event, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, after-school class, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter, reaching thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at at sales@hilltownfamilies.org.

Become a Contributing WriterJOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community-building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish, and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to info@hilltownfamilies.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS

June 30th – July 6th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Read the rest of this entry »

2018 Fourth of July Celebrations & Fireworks in Western Massachusetts

4th of July Celebrations & Fireworks in Western MA for 2018

From the state where the American Revolution began, families can take part in the multitude of Fourth of July celebrations happening in Western MA! Be sure to check out the Hilltown Families list of Weekly Suggested Events for a comprehensive list of family and community events happening in Western MA.

Below is our comprehensive list of events, parades, and fireworks celebrating Independence Day throughout Western MA for 2018. Please take the time to confirm events you wish to attend, including time, place, age appropriateness, location, and costs before attending.

Be sure to check out the Hilltown Families list of Weekly Suggested Events every Thursday for a comprehensive list of family and community events happening in Western MA. Subscribe to our free eNewsletter and have an update sent to your inbox every Thursday!

Click here to find firework displays & parades!

Hilltown Families on Mass Appeal: Community-Based Learning for Zoology

Hilltown Families on Mass Appeal:
Community-Based Learning for Zoology

Hilltown Families and Mass Appeal (a weekday, hour-long lifestyle program on NBC) have teamed up to offer a live monthly segment on WWLP 22News!  Each month, community-based education specialist and Hilltown Families’ Founder, Sienna Wildfield, joins Mass Appeal hosts to talk about ways to engage in your community while supporting the interests and education of your children (and yourselves!).

This monthly segment continued on Monday, June 25, 2018 with Sienna and Danny talked about how to support your children’s expressed interest in ecology, biology, or zoology with community-based resources.

Click on video to view.

For more information and links to resources mentioned in this segment, check out our recent post, Summer Critters & Local Resources Support Learning and a Sense of Place.


Mass Appeal is a live weekday program that airs at 11am on 22News (Springfield, MA).

Our next visit to the Mass Appeal studios will be Monday, August 27th, 2018!

Berkshire Mountains: Learning through the Lens of the Season

 

 

 

 


Who am I? Where am I? These are the fundamental questions proposed by the humanities. Inquiries related to local history, literature, and education, inspire us to think deeply about the places where we live and how our identity fits into the context of our community and the seasons.

Learning Ahead: Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts is a new 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 a sense of place.

Summer Critters & Local Resources Support Learning and a Sense of Place

Support an Interest in Zoology While Strengthening a Sense of Place with Community-Based Resources

The summer months are ripe with community-based education opportunities that can support an interest in biology, zoology, and ecology. Whether it’s catching tadpoles at the local pond or fireflies in a nearby meadow at night, the warmer months offer seasonal opportunities to experience local species and the different ecosystems in which they live.

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Taxonomy, the scientific grouping of biological organisms, is complex. Classes of animal species often encompass their own branch of biology. Kids who collect bugs are budding entomologists, while bird watchers are junior ornithologists. And the great thing about animal studies is that it also strengthens a sense of place, connecting us with animals and habitat that surround us every day.

In addition to self-directed nature-based learning opportunities, Western MA is rich in community-based resources that can support learning about native animals, insects, and other living creatures any time of the year. Visiting natural history museums, volunteering at animal shelters, stopping by a local farm, and seeking out experiences in community spaces can open us a world of learning.

Here are a few community-based resources to support interest and education in zoology, biology, and ecology:  Read the rest of this entry »

Weekdays in Western MA: June 25th – 29th, 2018

Weekdays in Western MA:
June 25 – 29, 2018

Weekday community-based educational opportunities can be found throughout the four counties of Western MA all week long! Each weekday we feature community-based educational opportunities that can be selected to support the interests and education of self-directed teens, homeschoolers and life-long learners.

Select the day of the week and find events that support your interests through community engagement!

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for our comprehensive list, including ongoing learning and play opportunities for younger children and intergenerational community events.


See your banner here! Sponsor Weekdays in Western MA!

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HFVS Rock and Keep Rolling Episode with Guest DJ, Tim Seston (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Rock and Keep Rolling Episode with Guest DJ, Tim Seston

Exploring a single word through music can uncover the many ways we use language on an everyday basis. In Rock and Keep Rolling the word “roll” is used to describe the movement of waves, wheat fields, and a manatee.  It describes the fun of rolling down a hill to the more sophisticated meaning of letting something roll off you back.  A roll can be a food item, or a drum sequence, or quite simply the partner of rock. – www.frompagetoplay.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
June 15th & 16th, 2018
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: Tim Seston – “Here to Play”


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

Tim Seston – “Bring on the Thunder” [On a Roll]
Doobee Brothers – “Black Water” [Best of the Doobees]
Fran Friedman – “The Colors of the Earth” [Dreams for Tomorrow]
Justin Roberts – “Rolling Down the Hill” [Lemonade]
Tim Seston – “Rolling in the Mud” [Here to Play]
Little Richard – “On Top of Spaghetti” [A Child’s Celebration of Silliest Songs]
Karen K & the Jitterbugs – “Slow Roll” [Blue Bike Chronicles]
Dorothy Cresswell – “Mary Manatee” [More Songs for Curious Kids]
Keith Boynton – “Be Like a Duck” [Philadelphia Chickens]
Tim Seston – “Jelly and Coral” [On a Roll]
Andy Z – “This Land is Your Land” [Classic Songs & Traditional Tunes]
Ratboy Jr. – “Bill” [Champions of the Universe]
Wayne Potash – “Seven Nights to Rock” [Don’t Forget the Donut!]
Liz Buchanan – “Rockin in the Rabbit Hole” [Once Upon a Tune]
Uncle Devin – “Drum Roll Call” [Drum Tales!]
Tim Seston – “On a Roll” [On a Roll]

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Recap Map: Western MA Weekend Summary & Family Guide for June 23rd & 24th, 2018

Here’s a recap of news and information posted on Hilltown Families this past week, along with a map for finding out what’s happening this weekend and next week throughout Western MA!

MAP

Peruse our list of Suggested Events for June 23rd – 29th, 2018 for a comprehensive list of events happening throughout the four counties of Western MA, including Bulletin Board Announcements, Ongoing Story Hours & Playgroups, and the Hilltown Family Variety Show.

Also, check our weekly column, Learn Local. Play Local. for 10 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Moon Phases to Goat Yoga. Bubbles to Fireflies., and our monthly column, Berkshire Family Fun, for a list of premier educational, cultural highlights in Berkshire County for families.

We’re Spreading Health Across Western MA!

In an effort to connect families with health and wellness resources in the region, weʼre offering service providers a chance to partner with Hilltown Families in your marketing with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. Click HERE to learn how you can share your business with thousands of families throughout Western MA!

advertise with Hilltown Families

LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
June 23rd – 29th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

RECAP

FIVE FROM THE ARCHIVES

  1. Fibonacci Sequence & Golden Ratio Drive Nature Based Education
  2. The Garden Plot: Tending Gardens & Family Learning Opportunities
  3. Let Them Grow: Creating Child Friendly Food Experience
  4. HFVS All Kinds of Families Episode with Guest DJ, Alastair Moock (Radio Show/Podcast)
  5. Picky Eaters, Part 1: The Root

RECAP MAP SPONSOR

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Find out how you can be a sponsor too!

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10 Community-Based Educational Highlights: Moon Phases to Goat Yoga. Bubbles to Fireflies.

This summer, engage and learn with your kids through bubble blowing!

This week, we have two words for you: Goat Yoga. Need we say more? Well, just in case stretching with Capra aegagrus hircus isn’t your thing, you could explore the phases of the moon, learn how to use regular household items to conduct kitchen science experiments, take part in an artistic interpretation of the game “telephone” with James Taylor’s daughter, Sally, learn about fireflies and run through a field reveling in their luminescence, or enjoy early 4th of July fireworks displays.

Whatever your interests, Western MA has learning opportunities for you. Check out our list of Weekly Suggested Events and let Hilltown Families show you what’s out there and how to make the most of it. We’re the place where you and your family’s interests and values intersect with the adundant resources in Western MA. Read the rest of this entry »

Suggested Events for June 23rd – 29th, 2018

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

To find out about more event, be sure to visit our Suggest an Event Bulletin Board to see what our readers have recently shared! Have an event to share? Feel encouraged to self-post community events here at any time!

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, self-post your event at any time on our Suggest An Event bulletin board. The events below are “suggested.” Please take the time to confirm that these events are happening, along with time, place, age appropriateness, and costs before attending.

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools, and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Click HERE to find out more.

We’re Spreading Wellness Across Western MA!

Are you in the business of improving people’s physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual health and well-being? Hilltown Families is offering service providers a chance to spread the word about your services with a brand new online resource: Western MA Health & Wellness Directory. We are connecting Western MA families with the health and wellness resources we need, while also supporting the businesses that make our local economy thrive. If you, or someone you know, would like to be included in this list, click HERE to find more information or to fill out our easy sign-up form. You can also reach out to our helpful Program Manager, Courtney Supple-Benoit, with any questions. We encourage our burgeoning entrepreneurs, small business-owners, non-profit managers, and even our large institutional neighbors to reach out and get connected with us – and families throughout Western MA!

Bulletin Board

The Hoosac Valley Train Ride is a great experience for families, groups, and couples. Travel on a one-hour narrated train trip through the Hoosac Valley countryside. The volunteer staff are knowledgeable, friendly and excited to share this railroad experience with you. Summer train rides run Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays Memorial Day through Labor Day. Cost is $12/adult, $10/seniors or military, $8/child (4-14 yrs). Adults-only Cabaret Trains with live music and BYOB run select Saturdays June through September. Cost is $20 per each. Purchase pre-sale tickets to guarantee your seats or come 30 minutes before ride to purchase tickets at the counter. See www.berkshiretrains.org or contact info@berkshirescenicrailroad.org.

Tu-Sa 6/19-8/18

Storrowton Village tours are available Tuesday – Saturday, 6/19 – 8/18. Guided tours, available for individuals and small groups, take place Tuesdays through Saturdays, from 11am to 3pm. $7/person, under 6 free. Hands-on activities for $1/person per activity. Costumed docents will guide your group through the Village on a tour of restored shops and houses, sharing stories about the buildings, artifacts, and the people who occupied these buildings and their way of life in the 19th century. Kids camps & bus tours welcome! For more information, visit storrowtonvillage.com

July 30 – Aug 10

Learn, play & unplug at Storrowton Village’s Early American Summer Days for ages 7-12. Their unique hands-on approach to history will help 21st century children learn what it was like to be a kid in the 1800s. This year will feature two different sessions, each with fun and educational themed activities, making it possible for children to attend and enjoy both weeks. Register online or stop into the Museum Office to register in person. Invention Week runs from 7/30-8/3; Toys & Games Week from 8/6-8/10. For more information, visit storrowtonvillage.com/summer-days.

Add your camp

advertise with Hilltown FamiliesOur summer camp guide is up! Check out our featured post, 2018 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a list that will wow and dazzle you! Summer opportunities featured range from music, art, farming, theater, dance, science, nature, sports, speaking, yoga, rock ‘n roll… to traditional summer day or overnight camps/programs! There’s something for all ages, toddlers to teens! Check it out and start making your summer plans! — Do you have a summer camp or program you’d like to have included in our comprehensive list? Find out how you can submit your listing HERE.

Add your school

Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See your summer camp, class, community event, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, after-school class, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter, reaching thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Find out more about our advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at at sales@hilltownfamilies.org.

Become a Contributing WriterJOIN OUR TEAM OF CONTRIBUTING WRITERS: Interested in becoming a Contributing or Guest Writer for Hilltown Families? We welcome writings that reflect the community-building and educational efforts parents, teens, teachers, artists, activists and community leaders work towards and accomplish, and how that affects, supports and empowers our families. All writing styles welcomed, including local reviews, DIY posts, seasonal cooking/local food, and community-based educational & community service learning opportunities/resources. Send your query to info@hilltownfamilies.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
June 23rd – 29th, 2018

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Cultural Itineraries | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Storyhour & Playgroups| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Read the rest of this entry »

Summer Trails: Learning through the Lens of the Season

 

 

 

 


Who am I? Where am I? These are the fundamental questions proposed by the humanities. Inquiries related to local history, literature, and education, inspire us to think deeply about the places where we live and how our identity fits into the context of our community and the seasons.

Learning Ahead: Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts is a new 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 a sense of place.

Summer Suggestions: Things to Do & Places to See in Western MA

Summer Bucket List & Reader Recommendations for Western MA

The Cummington Fair is a gem of an agricultural fair that happens every August in the heart of the Hilltowns. Mark Melhorn, Arjuna Greist and Piet Slaghekke all picked “The Biggest and Best Little Fair in the Country” for our Summer Bucket List! (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

With it’s natural beauty, local food, family attractions and community festivals and fairs, Western Massachusetts is a haven for family fun. Whether you’re visiting the area, or are fortunate enough to live here year round, the region in the summer is an engaging place to vacation or staycation! We asked our readers to recommend their favorite attractions, day trips, must see or must do family activities, and we received 75 great tips. While not an exhaustive list (nor in any order) of the fun and adventure families can have in Western MA, it’s a great place to start.

If you have a recommendation to add to this list, please do! Post your suggestion below.

  1. “The (free!) spray park at the Beachgrounds Park in South Hadley.” — Sandra Dias (Holyoke, MA)
  2. “We love to go blueberry picking at [Sobieski’s] River Valley Farm in Whately!” — Laura Muller (Amherst, MA)
  3. “I like to pick up sandwiches and Polish treats from BBA Deli Market in South Deerfield, then hike up Mount Sugarloaf State Reservation for a picnic with a view.” — April Genung (Sunderland, MA)
  4. Musante Beach is a relaxing and inexpensive way to spend the afternoons reading, swimming and picnicking.” — Keith Lepine (Northampton, MA)
  5. “I love to take a picnic to Greenfield Energy Park with my daughter and enjoy the music. She loves the music, play structure, and trains. Buckland Recreation also has movies out by the pool at night during the summer. Next best thing to the old drive-ins! (Northfield Drive-In is also a great summer activity….)” — H Loomis
  6. “We love to go to Chapel Brook; a beautiful land near Ashfield protected by the Trustees of the Reservation. On one side of the road there’s is a lovely hike where beginning rock climbers can practice their skills. On the other side of the road is a series of cascading waterfalls, one even safe & gentle enough to slide down (with caution!). The water is deliciously icy-cold even on the warmest of summer days.” — Christy Winslow (Northampton, MA)
  7. Mass MoCA combined with Natural Bridge State Park (North Adams, MA) is always a good day trip. More locally, the Mill River offers countless great spots to bath–many of which are along our excellent bike paths.” — Ruth von Goeler (Northampton, MA)
  8. “Frisbee in Child’s Park in Northampton. This park seems to be the most under utilized resource in the area. This well manicured gem harkens back to another time.” — Glenn Sullivan (Holyoke, MA)
  9. “Walking on the Quabbin Dam (Belchertown, MA). It is a great place to take pictures of the kids.” — Matthew Galman (Shutesbury, MA)
  10. “The Eric Carle Museum (Amherst, MA) is a great place to spend some time.” — Eugenie Wu (Shutesbury, MA)
  11. “Any way you can float down the Deerfield River. It is sheer joy. It’s great 3 seasons, but late spring is very special – beautiful and exciting!” — Laurie Goddard
  12. “The Upper Valley Music Festival in Turners Falls. It’s a noon to midnight event that takes place at multiple venues (including Great Hall at Great Falls Discovery Center) in downtown Turners. Celtic music, singer-songwriters, rock n’ roll, contra dancing, you name it. The days events (including lots of opportunities to dance) are family friendly. And all proceeds benefits the American Cancer Society to boot. Check it out. ” — Chris Scanlon
  13. “Our favorite event is Yankee Doodle Days in Charlemont they have great fireworks and a demo Derby! Favorite everyday activities are the bike trails (i.e. Norwottuck and the Turners Falls one)” — Jen Knight (Bernardston, MA)
  14. “We always make sure to go to the 3 County Fairgrounds (Northampton, MA) to catch a horse show, preferably the sliders – it is truly amazing.” — Heather Polson (Northampton, MA)
  15. “Visit the Peace Pagoda in Leverett.” — Marion Hohn (Amherst, MA)
  16. Conway Station. Hike in and swim in that crystal clear water!” —Marissa Potter (Shelburne Falls, MA)
  17. “We love to go to the Heath Fair! It’s the perfect family day trip. Be sure to watch the herding dogs, eat lots of good food and jump into the cross cut saw competition!!” — Zoe Johnson (Ashfield, MA)
  18. “I second the Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out stage. Also weekends at Camp Norwich (Huntington, MA) for members of the Northampton YMCA.” — Amy Meltzer (Northamtpon, MA)
  19. “Summer isn’t complete without canoeing or kayaking (lots of places, but especially the DAR during blueberry season), blueberry picking at Fox Run, a summer hike at Graves Farms, soft serve from Village Green Greenhouse and Ice Cream (Williamsburg, MA) . . .” — Sara Barry (Haydenville, MA)
  20. “We would go to Puffer’s Pond (Amherst, MA) every day if we could!” — Karen Bayne (Northampton, MA)
  21. “On of our favorite summertime activities is playing Poohsticks on the bridge at the Mill River Recreation Area, and then walking on the trail to the Puffer’s waterfall.” —Melissa Miller (Amherst, MA)
  22. “Swimming at Ashfield Lake and then eating on the deck at the Ashfield Lake House!” — Rona Leventhal
  23. “Hot summer days mean heading to Flayvors of Cook Farm in Hadley for great ice cream and finding a spot to fish on a local river and if it has a rope swing~ bonus!” —Glenda Datsko (Greenfield, MA)
  24. “The Cummington Fair in late August is fun for the whole family.” — Arjuna Greist (Greenfield, MA)  Read the rest of this entry »

Dear Sarah: Chores

 

Dear Sarah,

What do you think is a good age at which to start giving children chores? Should chores be a requirement for getting an allowance?

Signed,

Uncertain in Belchertown

Dear Uncertain,

Ah, chores! This is a hot topic among many of the parents in my practice and one that I have struggled with myself, over the years. I am a big fan of chores for several reasons:

  1. Chores teach children to be contributing members of their families, which is the beginning of learning to contribute to their teams, workplaces, and communities.
  2. Chores provide an opportunity to teach children to do a task on time, thoroughly, and without complaining. These are important skills for holding down a job someday.
  3. Requiring our children to help in meaningful ways protects them from the overwhelm, exhaustion and resentment that their parents feel when parents try to do it all alone.
  4. Learning new tasks and mastering challenging jobs help children to build confidence and competence.

If you ask three different parenting consultants you will probably get three different answers, but I will share with you what works for me at my house. My 14 year old daughter, who is not a big fan of chores, might not agree that my approach “works” for her! As I say to her, “That’s ok, I don’t like all of my chores either. You don’t have to like them, you just have to do them.”  Read the rest of this entry »

Weekdays in Western MA: June 18th – 22nd, 2018

Weekdays in Western MA:
June 18th – 22nd, 2018

Weekday community-based educational opportunities can be found throughout the four counties of Western MA all week long! Each weekday we feature community-based educational opportunities that can be selected to support the interests and education of self-directed teens, homeschoolers and life-long learners.

Select the day of the week and find events that support your interests through community engagement!

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for our comprehensive list, including ongoing learning and play opportunities for younger children and intergenerational community events.


See your banner here! Sponsor Weekdays in Western MA!

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