Berkshire County Highlights for Families:
January 12th-25th, 2013
We’re nearly a month into winter with a healthy layer of snow on the ground, a great excuse to get outdoors and enjoying the beauty of the Berkshires! There are several opportunities to dust off and put your snowshoes to good use over the next couple of weeks! So strap on your snowshoes and select your choice destination for winter fun, including snowshoe race at Constitution Hill in Lanesborough, the Haskins Center’s Cabin Fever Festival in North Adams, Mountain Meadow Preserve in Williamstown, Notchview in Windsor, the Becket Quarry in Becket, Winter Trail Days at Hilltop Orchard in Richmond, and Bartholomew’s Cobble in Sheffield!
Find out about these events and other community events and learning opportunities happening throughout Berkshire County through January 25th, 2013:
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, storyhours and events both in Berkshire County and throughout the region.
Constitution Hill — 413-499-0596.
Saturday, January 12th at 9:45am: Test your snowshoeing skills in a snowshoe race at Constitution Hill! Hosted by the Berkshires Natural Resources Council, the Western Massachusetts Athletic Club, and Dion Showshoes, the race will include lots of great views and tons of fun. Registration begins at 9:45am. (<$)
Downtown North Adams — 413-662-3000. Main Street.
Mark Your Calendars: North Adams’ 16th Annual WinterFest happens February 23rd this year!
Haskins Center — 413-664-4821. 210 State Street.
Saturday, January 12th from 10:30-11:30am : Got cabin fever? Get cured at the Haskins Center’s Cabin Fever Festival! The event will include indoor versions of fun winter activities – there will be indoor ice fishing, a snowshoe trek, a snowball toss, and circle time with songs and stories. Registration required. (FREE)
Monday, January 14th from 10am-12noon: Trying to budget better in the new year? Take part in a two-part workshop series on budgeting and saving at the Haskins Center! Parents will learn the basics of financial planning, as well as some tricks and tips to help save money while shopping for a family. Registration required, childcare available. (FREE)
Friday, January 25th from 11am-12noon: The Haskins Center is hosting a Baby-and-Me Movement Class – parents with infants or small children (up to age 2) are invited to attend. The upbeat class is designed to include lots of movement that parents can do with their children, making for lots of fun exercise and bonding! (FREE)
Mass MoCA — 413-662-2111. Mass MoCA Way.
Sunday, January 13th from 2-3pm: Mass MoCA screens, “Brave New Voices,” a film about young people using spoken word to show that personal experiences are political. The film is sponsored by Williams College’s Davis Center and is part of the college’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Day events.
Mark Your Calendars: Free day at MASS MoCA on Saturday, February 9th!
Western Gateway Heritage State Park — 413-663-6312. 115 State Street, Building 4.
Saturday, January 12th at 3pm: Visit Western Gateway Heritage State Park for a space-themed workshop titled, “Empire of the Sun,” – it’s part of the park’s space-themed January programs, and pairs perfectly with a visit to the exhibit, “Journey to the Stars: To the Solar System, and Beyond!” (FREE, fee for parking)
Saturday, January 19th at 3pm:: Learn all about Mars atWestern Gateway Heritage State Park! Today’s program celebrates the 50th anniversary of the release of Mars Attacks. (FREE, fee for parking)
First Congregational Church — Main Street.
Sunday, January 13th from 3-8pm: Explore a labyrinth used for walking meditation at the First Congregational Church! The labyrinth is an ancient technique used by non-sectarian groups to encourage mindfulness. Sponsored by Williams College. (FREE)
The Clark — 413-458-2303. 225 South Street.
Saturday, January 12th at 10am: The Clark is hosting a special gallery adventure for preschool kids today! Visit the museum for a tour, art-making, and a talk on using art to tell a story. Dress for messy art-making! (FREE with museum admission)
Sunday, January 13th at 3pm: Broadway comes to the Berkshires – The Clark is screening Barrymore, featuring Academy Award winner Christopher Plummer. The show, set in 1942, tells the story of legendary Shakesperian actor John Barrymore’s career. 413-458-0524. ($$)
Sunday, January 20th at 3pm: A new four-part lecture series, “A Feast for the Eyes: Food, Porcelain, Silver, and Luxury Fabrics” opens at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. Darra Goldstein, professor of Russian at Williams College, will present the lecture “Artful Dining: The Orchestration of the Meal.” Goldstein will explore feasts, from the ribald gatherings of the European Middle Ages through the opulent banquets of the Renaissance and on to the excesses of America’s Gilded Age. Older students can get a unique view into European history. 413-458-2303. ($$)
Images Cinema — 413-458-1039. 50 Spring Street.
Saturday, January 19th at 10:30am & 1pm: Images Cinema’s International Family Film Series screens, “Little Fugitive,” a film 1953 about a 7-year-olds runaway journey from Brooklyn to Coney Island. The story in the film is told from a child’s perspective, and is about family relationships, what it means to be a sibling, and the complicated logic of children. Entertaining for kids and adults alike! ($)
Mt. Greylock Stony Ledge – Hopper Rd.
Wednesday, January 23rd from 10am-3pm: Explore the west side of Mt. Greylock on a hike to Stony Ledge with the Berkshire Natural Resources Council! The hike will follow the Haley Farm Trail, and then will move back down the mountain through the Hopper. The hike is best for families with older kids, and will cover 2.5 miles of strenuous terrain both ways. Dress for the weather! (FREE)
Mountain Meadow Preserve – 413-532-1613 x10. Benedict Rd. (VT)
Saturday, January 19th at 10am: Strap on your snowshoes for a trek at the Mountain Meadow Preserve. The network of gentle trails is perfect for cross country skiing or snowshoeing. The trek will include visiting an overlook for a great view of the Greylock range. Approximately two-hour outing. Best for families with older children. Call to confirm conditions. (FREE)
Williams College — 413-597-2188. 829 Main Street.
Monday, January 14th from 9am-12noon: Williams College presents a special media presentation all about Martin Luther King, Jr. There will be a screening of Citizen King, a film focusing on King’s leadership, as well as a slideshow of important scholars and activists heading other movements. Takes place in Baxter Hall. 413-597-3131. (FREE)
Williamstown Historical Museum — Milne Public Library. 1095 Main Street. 413-458-2160
Saturday, January 19th at 11am: Learn about the history of the Mount Greylock Ski Club today at the Williamstown Historical Society! Club member Mary Merselis (who joined in 1965) will share nearly 75 years worth of local history, including the club’s role in building Greylock’s Thunderbolt Trail and in creating the National Ski Patrol. The historical society is located in the Milne Library. (FREE)
Notchview —413-684-0148. Old Route 9.
Saturday, January 12th from 10am-3pm: Try out winter sports at Notchview’s Winter Trails Day! Families can try out cross country skiing and snow shoeing, and can explore the many trails of Notchview. There will be cross country skiing lessons at 10:30am and 1:30pm, as well as a ski waxing workshop (covering both wax and no-wax skis) at 11am. Experienced snowshoers can go on a 1.5-mile snowshoe hike at 11:30am. Showshoes will be available or rental. outdoors and enjoy the fresh snow! ($)
Becket Quarry — 413-623-2100. Quarry Road.
Wednesday, January 16th from 10am-1pm: Explore the 300 acre forest at the old Becket quarry with the Berkshire Natural Resources Council! Bring snowshoes or crampons if you wish, and learn about the history of the quarry and the beautiful forest surrounding it. (FREE)
Lee Library — 413-243-0385. 100 Main Street.
Lenox Community Center — 413-637-5530. 65 Walker Street.
Saturday, January 19th from 7-11:30pm: Go contra dancing tonight! Dances are a great way to get exercise, learn about rhythm, and gain better balance and movement skills. Contra dancing provides a friendly intergenerational environment in which people of all ages can contribute and participate equally. Potluck takes place from 7-8pm, and dancing begins at 8. ($)
Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary — 413-637-0320. 472 West Mountain Road.
Saturday, January 12th from 10am-2pm: Kids can learn firsthand about bird banding at Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary! Visitors can watch as birds are caught in mist nets, then banded in order to be tracked and used for data collection. Participants will also be able to help record data, and learn what the information collected from banded birds is used for! (<$)
Berkshire Athenaeum — 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue.
Wednesday, January 16th from 3:30-4:30pm: Kids can build LEGO creations this afternoon at the Berkshire Athenaeum’s LEGO Club! This week’s theme is rocket ships and outer space – make something totally out of this world! Kids can experiment with a variety of blocks, and can collaborate with other LEGO designers, too. (FREE)
Berkshire Community College — 1350 West St.
Tuesday, January 22nd from 5:30-7:30pm: Child Care of the Berkshire presents an 8 week parenting series at the Berkshire Community College. “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk” is free for Pittsfield area families with children ages 6yo and under. Learn simple effective communication techniques that really work. Parents will learn ways to: Gain your child’s cooperation; Set limits and maintain goodwill; Use alternatives to punishment; and Resolve family conflicts peacefully. Free meal for parents and children. Free on-site child care and transportation available. Call to register at 413-664-4821. (FREE)
Berkshire Museum — 413-443-7171. 39 South Street, Rte. 7.
Wednesday, January 16th from 7-8pm: The Berkshire Museum hosts author Bob Reiss, who will share a multimedia presentation about his travels and work studying the Shell oil company’s efforts to drill in Alaska. Older students can learn about the controversy over Alaskan oil drilling from all sides – Reiss has worked with Eskimo groups, the military, scientists, politicians, and hunters in order to gather information, and the viewpoints on each side will be shared. (<$)
Saturday, January 19th from 1-7pm: The Berkshire Museum is coming alive with creatures of the night with Bats: Creatures of the Night – the museum’s newest exhibit is all about bats, and it open today! There will be fun family activities from 1-3pm, including a scavenger hunt, echolocation experiments, and wing-making. At 4pm, the museum is offering a lecture on bats – great for older students with audience skills. Finally, from 5-7pm, families can enjoy bat-themed treats and take tours of the new exhibit (plus, admission is free after 5pm)! ($)
Berkshire Music School – 413-442-1411. 30 Wendell Ave.
Saturday, January 12th from 10am-12noon: The Berkshire Music School hosts an open house for families to come tryout music classes and to check out an instrument petting zoo. Refreshments will be served and the faculty will meet & greet. (FREE)
Stephen’s Church — 67 East St.
Saturday, January 19th from 1-5pm: The Pittsfield Resilience Circle is organizing the Berkshires’ first ever Repair Café. Various repair persons will be available to fix small appliances, clothing and other fabric items, bicycles, toys, small furniture items, computers, and so on. Volunteers needed too; anyone with experience in any kind of repair craft or who would like to provide general help. 413-212-8589. (FREE)
Hilltop Orchard — 413-281-2028. 508 Canaan Road.
Saturday, January 12th from 10am-3pm: Celebrate Winter Trails Day at Hilltop Orchards! The trails are open for the season, and there will be 30-minute workshops on cross-country skiing and snowshoeing throughout the day (skiing at 11am and 2pm, snowshoeing at 10am, 1pm, and 3pm). Learn a new activity that will help your family spend more time outside this winter! Registration required. (FREE)
Norman Rockwell Museum — 413-298-4100. 9 Route 183.
Saturday, January 12th from 10am-4pm: Learn about creative ways to connect comics to curriculum at the Norman Rockwell Museum! Participants will learn a bit about the history of comic book art, as well as many ideas for using comics as learning material alongside common curriculum topics. This special workshop is being held in conjunction with the museum’s exhibit, “Heroes and Villains: The Comic Book Art of Alex Ross.” Registration required. ($$)
Sunday, January 20th at 2:30pm: Learn about the powerful images that Norman Rockwell created during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Norman Rockwell Museum’s Curator of Education Tom Daly will share the stories behind the creation of such paintings as “The Problem We All Live With,” “Murder in Mississippi,” and “New Kids in the Neighborhood,” and Rockwell’s dedication to civil rights throughout his career. (FREE with museum admission)
Stockbridge Library — 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street.
Friday, January 25th at 6pm: Artist, educator and author of “Cellblock Visions: Prison Art in America,” Phyllis Kornfeld, will present a slide talk on the art of inmates at the Stockbridge Library. This presentation will be paired with a discussion of their work, common types of art produced, and its place amongst mainstream American artwork. Older students can attend the event to learn about prison culture, the universality of human artistic expression, art in America, and other topics related to art, psychology, and criminal justice. (FREE)
Berkshire Co-op — 413-528-9697. 42 Bridge Street.
Saturday, January 19th at 1oam: Kids Can Cook Class. Youth can learn how to make pumpkin whole wheat cinnamon rolls from scratch, an healthier option to traditional cinnamon rolls! (FREE)
Monday, January 21st at 4pm: DIY KIDS: Winter Natural Tie Dying. Using natural dyes made out of fruits & veggies, kids can learn to tie-dye napkins to back and be reused in the school lunch boxes! (FREE)
Berkshire South Regional Community Center — 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road.
Monday, January 14th from 5-6pm: Jack Hurley, chef at the Berkshire Co-op, is guest chef tonight at the Berkshire South Community Center’s community dinner! On the menu is chicken marbella with rice pilaf and veggies!(FREE)
First Congregational Church – 251 Main Street
Monday, January 21st at 12noon: 14th Annual Interfaith Celebration of the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Holiday takes place at the First Congregational Church (Parish Hall). There will be interfaith prayers, readings, music, and singing, featuring youth from local community groups, including Greenagers, Multicultural BRIDGE Youth Corps, and Railroad Street Youth Project. Please bring an item of nonperishable food for local food pantries and community meals. (FREE)
Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center — 413-528-0100. 14 Castle Street.
Sunday, January 20th at 4pm: Screening of The Pink Panther (1963 Release). Best for families with older kids.($)
Mason Library — 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street.
Friday, January 25th at 6:15pm: The library will be screening, “The Pirates! Band of Misfits.” Come in your jammies!
Ramsdell Library — 413-274-3738. 1087 Main Street.
Saturday, January 12th at 11am: Clay workshop for kids. Sign up. (FREE)
Wednesday, January 16th & 23rd from 3:30-4:30pm: Learn some basic Spanish at the Ramsdell Library! The class is designed just for kids, and will teach some basic vocabulary. (<$)
Friday, January 18th from 6:15-7:45pm: Learn all about constellations, then take a good look at them through a powerful telescope at the Ramsdell Library during Family Astronomy Night! Astronomer Rick Costello will teach families the basics of identifying things seen in the night sky, and families can sign up for telescope viewings. There will be hot chocolate, too! Registration required. (FREE)
Saturday, January 19th from 11am-12noon: Is your mama a llama? Does your llama- mama wear red pajamas? Youth are invited to come meet a llama in the library! All ages welcomed. (FREE)
Bartholomew’s Cobble — 413-229-8600. Weatogue Road.
Saturday, January 12th from 9am-4:30pm – Explore Bartholomew’s Cobble with the Trustees of Reservations’ yearly Hot Chocolate Saturdays series! Visitors can hike, snowshoe, and/or ski at the Cobble (weather depending, of course), and end their excursion with a cup of cocoa in the visitor center. Families can practice looking for signs of birds and mammals, and can explore the changes that have taken place to the landscape since winter set in. (FREE with admission)
[Photo credit: (ccl) T-Bone Sandwich]