Suggested Events for May 10th-16th, 2014

Discover fun and educational events happening this week in western Massachusetts, along with announcements, upcoming events, links, resources and the HFVS podcast.

SUGGEST AN EVENT

“Hilltown Families continually excites and amazes me with all of the listings of events happening in or around the hilltowns. It has opened up my hilltown world in many ways. I wish that all new mothers were given the web address or Facebook page during prenatal visits to the doctor. So many mothers feel isolated and alone until their child enters school. I think that your eNewsletter would help remedy that problem!” – Debbie Carnes (Worthington, MA)

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program or service opportunity for youth/families 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… help us help you! Click HERE to find out more.

SUMMER CAMPS IN WESTERN MA

Summer Camps in  Massachusetts

“Hilltown Families continues to be my go-to place for family events. I really appreciated the organized list of summer camps!”

Over 50 Summer Camps to choose from! Now is the time to start signing up for summer camp! Check out our featured post, 2014 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a comprehensive list of over 50 summer camps & programs in the region! 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.

BULLETIN BOARD

May 11-26

Joyful learning starts with Oak Meadow! Save from Mother’s Day to Memorial Day. Enjoy 15% off Oak Meadow’s engaging, experiential homeschooling curriculum for kindergarten to grade 12, and 5% off enrollment in their fully accredited distance learning school. Oak Meadow helps you set a natural rhythm of learning for your family through their creative and challenging curriculum. Their compassionate, child-centered approach encourages critical thinking and intellectual development through hands-on activities, interdisciplinary projects, and thoughtful reading and writing practice. This May treat Mom to great savings, and treat the family to a great home learning experience! Offer runs from May 11 through May 26.

May 15

Cooley Dickinson/Massachusetts General Hospital Lecture Series. Concussions in Sports: Help for Parents. As media attention on concussions in sports rises, parents are in need of common sense, research- supported information. This presentation is designed to help parents understand what they need to know about concussions and how to best support and protect their child athletes as they participate in sports. Speakers include, Richard Ginsburg, PhD, Clinical Psychologist, Massachusetts General Hospital and Jonathan Schwab, MD, Pediatrician, Northampton, Family Practice. Thursday, May 15th 6-7pm at the Hadley Farms Meeting House, 41 Russell St., Hadley, MA. Registration is required, www.cooley-dickinson.org/classes or by calling 888-554-4234.

May 18

Abundance Farm Work Party and Celebration! Abundance Farm is an emerging Food Justice Farm and Outdoor Classroom on 253 Prospect Street in Northampton. This partnership between Congregation B’nai Israel, Northampton Survival Center and Lander-Grinspoon Academy will support local food security and serve as a unique, learning environment. Help launch the Farm on Sunday, May 18th. From 10-12 volunteers will create garden beds and plant an orchard. Delicious lunch for volunteers from 12-1. Celebrate from 1-3 with live music and activities for all ages including sports, cob oven baking, seed bomb workshop and bike blending! Come dressed to work and bring tools if you have them. For more info info@abundancefarm.org or visit www.abundancefarm.org.

May 22

Amherst Montessori School is holding a Toddler Open House on May 22, 3:30-5:30 PM. Meet the Toddler faculty and learn about their Montessori programs for children ages 12 months – 3 years. Enrolling now for the 2014-2015 year in full-and part-time programs. Inquire about their Spanish-English bilingual classroom, La Casita! Join them in a joyful, beautiful classroom that is prepared for the child’s emerging independence. The Toddler program includes music, art, practical life, grace and courtesy, language, outdoor play, and more in a child-centered and respectful setting. To learn more, contact Laura Miller, Director of Admission, at lmiller@amherstmontessori.org, or go to www.amherstmontessori.org.

ADVERTISE HERE: Reach thousands of families in Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! See afterschool class, community event, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business 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 enhanced publicity packages and options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by emailing us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com.

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 hilltownfamilies@gmail.com.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
May 10th-16th, 2014

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an Event | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets

Berkshire Family Fun

Events Happening in the Hilltowns | ♦ On-going Events

Saturday, May 10th, 2014

Hilltown Family Variety Show9-10am – HILLTOWN FAMILY VARIETY SHOW: Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org. Check out our Science & Education Episode with Guest DJ, Danny Weinkauf of They Might Be Giants. Danny demonstrates though song examples and commentary how his love of science and education has influenced his favorite songs and personal writing style.  Encore of Saturday’s broadcast airs Sunday morning from 7-8am and podcast is posted here on Hilltown Families immediately following Sunday’s broadcast. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcasts anytime. Click here to choose from 7 years

Saturday, May 10, TBA – LOCAL HISTORY: Join the Mill River Greenway Initiative for a “Riverwalk” in Downtown Northampton. Walk from Old South Street to Hockanum Road, discovering the history of Northampton and the Mill River along the way. This walk would be best for older students interested in local history. Pre-registration required – email info@millrivergreenway.org to register; space is limited. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 8am-11am – COMMUNITY MEAL: Celebrate Springfield’s May 13, 1636 founding at the World’s Largest Pancake Breakfast, held in the Eastfield Mall parking lot. This event features delicious pancakes and fun entertainment, and allows families to meet and spend time with community members of all ages. 1655 Boston Road. Springfield, MA. >$

Saturday, May 10, 8am-12noon – FUNDRAISER/COMMUNITY SALE: The 7th Annual Family 2 Family Sale takes place May 10 at the All Saints’ Episcopal Church in South Hadley. The sale features clothing, toys, gear, and supplies for kids of all ages.  Buy used goods instead of new while supporting the South Hadley Family Center! 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (SALE/FUNDRAISER)

Saturday, May 10, 9am – COMMUNITY SERVICE/NATURE STUDIES: Learn how you can help protect your local watershed and become a steward for the Westfield River at “Walkin’ the Watershed,” an event that is part of Wild and Scenic Westfield River’s Wild and Scenic Saturdays programs. Students can learn how to help care for sections of the River and how to conduct a visual survey. Meet at Buckley Dunton Lake. Call to register. 413-623-2070. Becket, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am – GEOLOGY: Discover the geologic history and ecology of the Greenfield Community College campus at a walk and talk event held by the Pioneer Valley Institute. Local geologists and naturalists Richard Little, Dave Small, and Nancy Goodman will present a short introduction, then lead participants on a walk around the GCC campus in search of interesting geologic formations, flora, and fauna. Learn about glacial Lake Hitchcock and how it has impacted (and continues to impact) the region’s geology and ecology. The walk is followed by a discussion, and then, after lunch, a second walk will take place off-campus and will take you by car to many other fascinating geologic sites in the area. Meet at the Sloan Theater on the GCC campus. You may attend one or both parts of this event. 413-775-1671. 1 College Drive. Greenfield, MA. (SUGGESTED DONATION $)

Saturday, May 10, 9am-11am – FISHING: Kids ages 14 and under can participate in the annual William Gray Memorial Fishing Derby, held by Ashfield Rod and Gun Club. Come have fun outdoors and spend time with family and friends. Takes place at Gray’s Sugar House. 413-628-4400. 38 Barnes Road. Shelburne Falls, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am-12noon – COMMUNITY SERVICE: Teachers from Gateway Regional School District have paired with the Hilltown Land Trust to offer a workday for the campus’ Nature Trail. Students, parents, and community members are invited to help revitalize the nature trail by removing saplings and overgrown brush. Community members of all ages can gain experience doing community service at this event, which will create opportunities for Gateway students to use the trail for outdoor study and ecology classes. 413-628-4485 x4. 12 Littleville Road. Huntington, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Saturday, May 10, 9am-12noon – PLANT SALE: Get your garden growing this Spring by buying plants the Greenfield Public Library‘s annual Plant and Book Sale. Find unique locally sourced plants for your garden and interesting reads for the summer. All proceeds benefit the Library’s programs. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (SALE/FIUNDRAISER)

Saturday, May 10, 9am-1pm – PLANT SALE: Celebrate Spring and gardening season at Gardening the Community‘s Annual Plant Sale and Gardeners Gathering! Here you can find flowers for Mother’s Day, plants for the garden, and information relating to gardening. Kids can get interested in gardening and learn how to grow their own food by attending plant sales, purchasing plants, and learning each step of starting their very own garden. 256 Hancock Street. Springfield, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am-1pm – PLANT SALE: Support Northampton’s public schools at the Support Our Schools Plant and Garden Sale on May 10 at Smith Vocational High School! Here you can find tons of different plants for your garden, and kids can pick out plants to get their own gardens started. 80 Locust Street. Northampton, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am-1pm – FARMERS’ MARKET: After a successful first season in 2013, the Downtown Pittsfield Farmers’ Market kicks off again on May 10! Come by for local veggies, fruits, eggs, meat, dairy, breads, flowers, and other goods, as well as live music, activities, and more. First Street. Pittsfield, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am-2pm – PLANT SALE:  Find everything from flower and vegetable starts to trucks, tools, and toys at the Red Gate Farm’s Annual Plant and Tag Sale. Families can come to the Farm to shop for the garden or vegetable patch, participate in fun activities, meet baby animals, and more. Kids can learn about farming and gardening by interacting with the animals, seeing farm tools and equipment, and seeing what sorts of vegetables are for sale – get a veggie start for your child and let them plant it, care for it, and watch it grow. This gives kids a sense of accomplishment and teaches them how to grow their own food. 4 Norman Road. Buckland, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9am-2pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Discover Belchertown’s history at the Stone House Museum‘s opening day! There will be tours of the house and grounds, a chance to buy plants for your garden, craft booths by local artisans, and more. Learn about local history and celebrate springtime! 413-323-6573. 20 Maple Street. Belchertown, MA. >$

Saturday, May 10, 9am-5pm – PLANT SALE: The Berkshire Botanical Garden is holding their 37th Annual Plant Sale on May 9th and 10th. Come by to check out their amazing selection of plants for sale, shop from vendors, participate in a silent auction, and go to the container design station. Plant-lovers of all ages will enjoy this event, which is a fun way to find interesting plants for your garden. 413-298-3926. 5 West Stockbridge Road. Stockbridge, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 9:30am-12:30pm – NATURE STUDIES: The Trustees of Reservations and Earthwork Programs are collaborating to offer “The Art of Bird Language and Seeing More Wildlife.” This workshop will help nature-lovers of all ages learn how to interpret and understand nature better. More information on the program and on registration can be found on the Trustees website. This event takes place at Bullitt Reservation. 413-340-1161. Bullitt Road. Ashfield, MA. $$$

Saturday, May 10, 10am – LOCAL HISTORY: The Plainfield Historical Society and Dario Coletta, Plainfield landscape historian, are leading “Exploring Plainfield’s History Through Hidden Landmarks,” a walk that will take you to little-known historical sites, including an animal pound, cemeteries, and a stone cave from the 19th century. Discover Plainfield’s fascinating hidden history and learn about what the town was like in the past on this fun and informative tour. Meet behind Plainfield Congregational Church. Church Lane. Plainfield, MA. (SUGGESTED DONATION $)

Saturday, May 10, 10am-12noon – PLANT STUDIES: Explore Quonquont Farm and learn about the history and impact of invasive species in our area with Quonquont Farm conservation manager Allison Bell and Franklin Land Trust. You can tour the Farm’s orchards and wild areas and learn about invasive plants and how to stop them. Invasive species are a big problem in this area, and this event will teach families the importance of being able to identify them and how to get rid of them. Please RSVP ASAP. 413-625-9151. 9 North Street. Whately, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 10am-1pm – HIKING: Come see the location of the Berkshire Natural Resources Council‘s newest trail at Alford Springs! A new trail will be built on the property this summer, and you can learn about the process of trail planning, mapping, and building while on this hike. This moderate hike is off-trail and would therefore be best for older teens and adults. 413-499-0596. Mountain Road. Alford, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 10am-2pm – FAMILY CELEBRATION: Families are invited to the North Quabbin Healthy Smiles Family Fun Day! This event features free dental screenings, a tricycle rodeo, family programs, arts and crafts, face painting, and more. Takes place at Athol Orange Elks Lodge. 413-249-3703. 92 New Athol Road. Orange, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 10am-4pm – HISTORY/CULINARY ARTS: Experience life in an early New England kitchen at Historic Deerfield‘s Open Hearth Cooking demonstrations! Learn about preserved foods and the meaning of the term “bottom of the barrel.” These cooking demonstrations allow visitors of all ages to see what life was like in the past and the types of chores and activities they would do had they lived several hundred years ago! Free with admission. 413-774-5581. 84B Old Main Street. Deerfield, MA. $

Saturday, May 10, 10:30am – STORYTIME/ARTS & CRAFTS: Kids ages 4 and up can hear a story and create a dream catcher at the Gaylord Memorial Library‘s Saturday Spectacular Story and Craft! 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 10:30am-11:30am – ARTS & CRAFTS: Come to the Carnegie Library for a special Spring craft activity – card-making! Children of all ages can have fun making creative and colorful cards. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 11am – STORYTIME/ARTS & CRAFTS: Celebrate moms at Odyssey Bookshop with a special Mother’s Day storytime and craft activity. Kids ages 2 and up can come hear two stories about moms and then make beautiful handcrafted Mother’s Day cards! Please RSVP. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 12noon – FIBER ARTS/KNITTING: Kids can come to the Monson Free Library to learn how to knit or improve their knitting skills! Library staff will be there to teach the basics, including casting-on, knitting, purling, and binding off. If possible, please bring US size #8 straight needles. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 12noon-3pm – DANCE STUDIES: Come see many different types of dance at the Amherst Regional High School Dance Department’s Court Jam Dance Festival, held at the Wildwood Elementary School basketball courts. There will be workshops on Zumba, yoga, and more, and demonstrations of hip-hop, Irish step, ballet, modern, Cape Verdean dance, Bomba, and other styles. Anyone interested in dance will love this event! 813 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 2pm – PERFORMANCE: Community members are invited to a free live performance of The Brain Show at Images Cinema. This comedic one-woman show, starring Suzy Polucci, is all about the brain and how it develops, and the negative lasting impacts of drugs, alcohol, and trauma. This show could act as a useful platform for teens and parents to have a meaningful discussion about drugs and alcohol. 413-458-5612. 50 Spring Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 2pm-3pm – BICYCLES/SKILL SHARE: The Sunderland Public Library is offering a Bike Maintenance Workshop for teens and tweens with a mechanic from Laughing Dog Bicycles. Students in grades 5-12 who want to learn the basics of bike repair and maintenance will love this workshop. Registration is required. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 3:30pm – DIY CRAFTS: DIY Kids: Plastic Bottle Flowers at Berkshire Co-op. Learn how to make flowers that mom can keep forever! In this workshop, we will be cutting up plastic bottles, making them into flowers and then painting them. Upcycle old soda bottles and make a gift for mothers day. Dress to get messy! 413-528-9697. 42 Bridge Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 3pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: Kids ages 6-10 can come to the Jones Library for LEGO Club! Get creative and work on your architecture skills with friends. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 3:30pm-5:30pm – MOTHER’S DAY/DANCE: Mothers, grandmothers, children, and grandchildren are invited to Ventfort Hall for a special Mother’s Day Pink Tea and Ballet event. The American Dance Institute Ensemble of Pittsfield, the Albany Berkshire Junior Ballet Company, and the Cantarella School of Dance will perform excerpts from classical ballet. In addition to the ballet and pink tea, Ventfort Hall’s exhibits and gift shop will be open. This event is a lovely way for mothers or grandmothers to celebrate this important holiday with their children or grandchildren. Please make reservations in advance. 413-637-3206. 104 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. $$

Saturday, May 10, 4pm – LITERACY/LIBRARY ADVENTURES: Kids can come to the Greenfield Public Library for “Experience the Book Party: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.” Get your Golden Ticket and explore the world of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at this fun event. Meet Charlie, Willy Wonka, Oompa Loompas, and other book characters all around the library. Registration is required. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 5pm – DANCE: The Stoneleigh-Burnham School Community Dance Program presents “Native American Folktales Told in Movement,” featuring thirty local children, older students, and adults. The groups will perform dances with themes based in American Indian mythology. All ages will enjoy seeing these folktales come to life through dance and movement. 413-774-2711. 574 Bernardston Road. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, May 10, 5pm-8pm – ART WALK: This month’s Art Walk Easthampton features the 7th Annual Easthampton High School Arts Festival at Old Town Hall! Many different styles of work by local students will be on display, and you can see work by some of the area’s most talented young artists. Students learned to mat, frame, and exhibit their own work for this event. All ages will enjoy seeing works by these gifted young artists, and there will also be other activities around town. 413-527-8278. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.

Saturday, May 10, 7pm – BENEFIT CONCERT: Help raise money for the food security programs of Grow Food Northampton, Just Roots, and Pleasant St. Community Garden at a concert by the Amandla Chorus at Helen Hills Hills Chapel. The Chorus will perform both ancient and modern songs from South Africa to France to Vietnam. Support local food security and celebrate the lives of Nelson Mandela and Pete Seeger at this concert. 123 Elm Street. Northampton, MA. $$

Saturday, May 10, 8pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Community College Players present a performance of Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein. Based on the comedy film of the same name, this play is about Frederick Frankenstein, the grandson of the infamous Victor Frankenstein, who inherits his family’s estate in Transylvania and brings a creature back to life. Teens and adults will love this hilarious performance, and fans of the movie will enjoy seeing it brought to life on stage. Takes place in Boland Theatre. Tickets are available in advance. 413-499-0886. 1350 West Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

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Sunday, May 11th, 2014

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!

Hilltown Family Variety Show7-8am – FAMILY RADIO: Valley Free Radio (WXOJ-LP 103.3FM Northampton, MA) airs encores the Hilltown Family Variety Show every Sunday morning. commercial-free family radio. Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org. Listen to the Hilltown Family Variety Show podcast anytime. Click here to see 7 years of archived shows.

Sunday, May 11, 8am-9:30pm – BIRD STUDIES: Discover local birds on a bird walk with Forbes Library. The walk will take you through the Smith College campus and up to Paradise Pond in search of birds. This walk is great for beginner birders who want to learn more about bird identification, bird calls, and what some good birding spots in the area are. Free and open to the public. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, May 11, 9:30am-5pm – MOTHER’S DAY/HISTORY: Celebrate Mother’s Day and learn about colonial New England at Old Sturbridge Village on May 11! Families can spend time together learning about historic New England trades, families, chores, games, and activities, and can do a craft and see a performance. There will also be a moms vs. kids tug of war! Moms get in free on this special day. 800-733-1830. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. >$

Sunday, May 11, 10am – MOTHER’S DAY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Celebrate Mother’s Day at the Yiddish Book Center with fun and educational events for the whole family. You can tour the museum (11am & 1pm), participate in a workshop about the Wexler Oral History Project (11am), and a musical tribute to Molly Picon (2pm), a star of the Yiddish Theatre. All ages can explore the museum and celebrate Mother’s Day at some or all of these programs. 413-256-4900. 1021 West Street. Amherst, MA.

Sunday, May 11, 10am-12noon – MOTHER’S DAY/PLANT STUDIES: Celebrate Mother’s Day with a guided wildflower walk at Bartholomew’s Cobble. All ages can stroll around the grounds looking for wild columbine and other native wildflowers. Families can even learn about how to grow these flowers at home to attract butterflies and other creatures! Please register in advance. 413-229-8600. 105 Weatogue Road. Sheffield, MA. $

Sunday, May 11, 10am-5pm – MOTHER’S DAY/MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Moms and kids can spend the day together at the Norman Rockwell Museum! The Museum is offering free admission to moms (with one paying ticket) on this special day, so bring the kids and discover all this Berkshire museum has to offer. There will also be gallery talks about family themes in art. 413-298-4100. 9 Route 183. Stockbridge, MA. $

Sunday, May 11, 11am – VOLUNTEER: Be a “blanketeer” at Wilbraham Public Library by making blankets for Project Linus. The organization provides new, handmade blankets to children who are ill or who have experienced trauma. Teens can gain hands-on experience in quilting, knitting, crocheting, sewing, etc. and learn about the importance of helping others at this event. 413-596-6141. 25 Crane Park Drive. Wilbraham, MA.

Sunday, May 11, 1pm-3pm – PLANT STUDIES: Discover beautiful Spring wildflowers at Little Tom Mountain with The Trustees of Reservations and Aimee Gelinas of Tamarack Hollow Nature and Cultural Center. This fun Mother’s Day hike gives families a chance to spend time together in the great outdoors! 413-532-1631. 125 Reservation Road. Holyoke, MA. $

Sunday, May 11, 1pm-4pm – MUSEUM ADVENTURES: Kids can explore the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art‘s special exhibition by Bernard Waber and then make paper hats inspired by Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile’s mom in the art studio! Celebrate Mother’s Day with this fun craft activity. Free with museum admission. 413-658-1100. 125 West Bay Road. Amherst, MA $

Sunday, May 11, 2pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Community College Players present a performance of Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein. Based on the comedy film of the same name, this play is about Frederick Frankenstein, the grandson of the infamous Victor Frankenstein, who inherits his family’s estate in Transylvania and brings a creature back to life. Teens and adults will love this hilarious performance, and fans of the movie will enjoy seeing it brought to life on stage. Takes place in Boland Theatre. Tickets are available in advance. 413-499-0886. 1350 West Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Sunday, May 11, 3pm-4pm – FILM: Historic Northampton’s Fast Forward Film Series presents, “Against the Mainstream: The Animations of Lutz Dammbeck” on May 11. The screening presents Dammbeck’s animated films, which were made in the former East Germany in the 1970s and ’80s. Barton Byg, Professor of Film and German Studies at UMass Amherst, will discuss the films and answer questions. Older students interested in film, animation, and German studies will enjoy this program. 413-584-6011. 46 Bridge Street. Northampton, MA.

Sunday, May 11, 5:30pm-8pm – COMMUNITY SING & DINNER: Earthdance is holding a community sing (5:30pm) and potluck (7pm) tonight! Penny Schultz, Earthdance co-founder, brings community members together through song. This intergenerational event is open to all ages, engaging children in music and singing in an intergenerational environment. 413-634-5678. 252 Prospect Street. Plainfield, MA. >$/SUGGESTED DONATION

Sunday, May 11, 7pm – FILM/MUSIC: Join Amherst Cinema for a screening of Pete Seeger: Power of Song (2007; rated PG) on May 11 at 7pm. The film, directed by Jim Brown, documents the life of Pete Seeger and features archival footage and personal films. Musicians Peter Blood and Annie Patterson, creators of Rise Up Singing, will present and introduction and lead the audience in song before the screening. Older students who interested in learning more about Seeger and his life and work as an artist and activist will enjoy this screening. Tickets available in advance. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Monday, May 12th, 2014

Monday, May 12, 10am – LITERACY: The Berkshire Athenaeum presents “Fun With Math and Science,” an event for children and their parents that is part of the Every Child Ready to Read series of programs. This event will teach parents how to help their children develop early literacy skills and foster in them a love of reading. 413-499-4809. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA.

Monday, May 12, 4pm-5pm – BOOK GROUP: Kids in grades 1-3 can come to a book group at the Forbes Library. Read Kenny and the Dragon by local author Tony DiTerlizzi and discuss it with peers, do a craft activity, have snacks, and decide on the next book. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.

Monday, May 12, 5:30pm-7:30pm – VOLUNTEER: Teens and adults can gain experience volunteering by helping Kestrel Land Trust build bird nest boxes. This work party is the first Land Stewards Corps event of the season, and materials, tools, and instructions will be provided. Since this volunteer opportunity requires the use of tools, it is best for older teens and adults. Email jack@kestreltrust.org or call to register. 413-549-1097. 20 Beston Street. Amherst, MA.

Monday, May 12, 6pm-7pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Tzivia Gover presents, “Made in the Happy Valley – Nautilus I & II” at the Wistariahurst Museum. Gover will discuss early suffragist Elizabeth Towne’s legacy as a publisher of the journal “The Nautilus” as well as other New Thought books. Towne operated from her home and business right down the street from Wistariahurst! Older students interested in local history and publishing will enjoy this talk. 413-322-5660. 238 Cabot Street. Holyoke, MA. $

Monday, May 12, 7pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Parents are invited to Northampton High School for a special lecture by Rachel Simmons, titled “Girls and Social Media.” Simmons has written several books and co-founded the Girls Leadership Institute, which teaches girls skills for “assertive self-expression, emotional intelligence, and authentic relationships.” This talk will focus on how girls interact with social media, what potential problems could arise, and how to teach healthy social media use. Takes place in Fayette Congdon Auditorium. 380 Elm Street. Northampton, MA.

ONGOING FOR MONDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your ongoing event/activity here, email us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: CHP Family Network offers a “gym fun” playgroup at West Stockbridge Town Hall. 413-464-5095. 21 State Line Road. West Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by Otis Town Hall for playgroup every Monday! 413-464-5095. 1 North Main Road. Otis, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn Group at the Williamstown Youth Center for kids walking-age up to age five. Includes puzzles, play dough, riding toys, balls, books, and more. 413-663-6593. 66 School Street. Williamstown, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for babies 2 and under and their parents at the East Longmeadow Library. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MOVEMENT: “Music for Little Ones” at the Pelham Library features a half hour of music and movement for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Meekins Library on the first and third Monday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: MotherWoman is returning to the Hilltowns for a weekly drop-in group for mothers of young children. The group offers a supportive environment for mothers to discuss motherhood and all aspects of raising young children. Takes place at the St. John’s Corner House Mission. 413-625-6948. 469 Main Street. Ashfield, MA.
  • 3:15pm-4:15pm – CHESS: Kids in grade 2 and up are invited to the Storrs Library for their weekly drop-in chess program. Come play with other kids and improve your chess skills! 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7:30pm – SPORTS: Kids and adults 12 and up can come play pickup soccer at Pettingill Park in Cummington. All experience levels welcome. Runs all summer. Cummington, MA. (FREE)

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Tuesday, May 13th, 2014

Tuesday, May 13, 3:30pm-4:30pm – STUDENT WORKSHOP: Teens, are you looking for a summer job? Come to the Forbes Library and work with a career counselor to look for jobs, improve your resume, and ask any questions you might have. 413-587-1010. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.

Tuesday, May 13, 3:30pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: Kids can have fun with LEGOs and practice their building skills at the Haskins Center with Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc.! 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA.

Tuesday, May 13, 6pm-7:30pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Parents are invited to a Parent Cafe at the Bridge Street School! Come share information and ideas and discuss the challenges of parenting with other local parents. Parents cafes give parents an opportunity to address parenting concerns, get advice, and learn how to become the best parents they can. Childcare is provided. Please call or email bblack@northampton-k12.us. 413-587-1471. 2 Parsons Street. Northampton, MA.

Tuesday, May 13, 6:30pm – COMMUNITY MEAL/LOCAL HISTORY: Join the Williamsburg Historical Society for an intergenerational potluck supper (6:30pm), followed by “Water Mills of Williamsburg: Where, When, Who Built Them, and the Technology They Embraced,” an illustrated talk (7:30pm) presented by local historians Bob Barker, Ralmond Black, and Eric Weber. Learn about the industrial history of Northampton’s Mill River and where some of the area’s first water mills were located and why. Older students interested in local history will enjoy learning about Williamsburg’s old mills and the town’s industrial history. Takes place at the First Congregational Church of Williamsburg. 4 North Main Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE/DONATIONS ACCEPTED

Tuesday, May 13, 7pm-8:30pm – DANCE: The Funk Box Studio and Gaia Roots World Music present an Afro-Cuban Dance Class with Miguel Periche from Holguin, Cuba, with live folkloric drumming by Aimee Gelinas. Periche will teach dances like the social rumba, sacred Orisa, and hip hop. This program would be best for older students. Email aimee@gaiaroots.com to register. 137 North Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

Tuesday, May 13, 7pm – FILM/PHOTOGRAPHY: Learn about photographer Saul Leiter, his life, and his work at Amherst Cinema on May 13. In No Great Hurry (2014; not rated), directed by Thomas Leach, tells the story of Leiter and his work as a color photographer and member of The New York School, his rise to fame in his 80s, and his task of cleaning out his apartment. Older students who are interested in photography and documentary film will enjoy this screening. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. $

ONGOING FOR TUESDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your ongoing event/activity here, email us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com)

  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The CHP Family Center is holding a “Toddler Steps” playgroup for kids 18 months to three years. Takes place at CHP Family Services Building every Tuesday and Thursday. 413-464-5095. Great Barrington, MA (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:30am-12noon – PARENT/CHILD GROUP: Gateway Family Center offers a parent-child school readiness group every Tuesday from until June. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Come by the Goodwin Memorial Library for “Lunatunes!” a dynamic storytime with songs, movement, stories, and original art. For babies through age 5. 413-584-7451. Route 47 & Route 9. Hadley, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Storytime for toddlers at the Berkshire Athenaeum. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Sunderland Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Every Tuesday and Friday. Old Amherst Road. Sunderland, MA.
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Join the Greenfield Public Library for a weekly storytime! This event includes stories, songs, fingerplays, and crafts for kids age five and under. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for pre-K kids with educational games and hands-on activities. Takes place at Haskins Center. 413-663-6593. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10:30am – MUSIC: Every Tuesday until May 6, the Jones Library will hold “Sing With Your Baby,” an program for preschool-aged children and their parents. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA.
  • 11am-12noon – CULINARY ARTS: Community Health Programs is offering “Kids’ Kitchen,” a cooking class for kids ages 2.5-5 that focuses on healthy food choices. This class teaches kids the importance of healthy eating at an early age and gets them interested in cooking. 413-528-0457 x1154. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA.
  • 11am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Every Tuesday is toddler storytime at the Lenox Library! Come by for interactive board books, stories, songs, and fingerplays. For kids 18 months to 3 years. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:30pm – STORYTIME: Weekly story time, snack and get-together for preK kids and their caregivers. Becket-Washington Library. 413-623-5483. 3367 Main Street. Becket, MA (FREE)
  • 2pm – FILM: Amherst Cinema offers weekly matinees on Tuesdays especially for people with babies! This is a great chance to get out and see a movie without having to worry about finding a sitter. Check their website to see what’s playing each week. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. >$
  • 2pm-4:30pm – LIBRARY: Kids ages 10 and up are invited to the Hatfield Public Library for Teen Tuesdays. Each meeting features a fun activity. Takes place the first and third Tuesdays of each month. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 3-5pm – TEENS: The Lilly Library hosts a weekly, drop in teen program for ages 12-17yo. Activities include games, crafts, book chat, movies, snacks. 413-587-1500. 19 Meadow Street. Florence, MA (FREE)
  • 3pm – LEGOS: Lego Club is every Tuesday at the Bushnell-Sage Library! Come to the library and make new friends while creating Lego masterpieces. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: Lego Club meets at the Adams Library the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. For kids 4-8. Please call to sign up. 413-664-4821. 92 Park Street. Adams, MA.
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LIBRARY TIME: Kids of all ages can come to the Millers Falls Library for Library Club! This includes games, activities, crafts, and snacks. 413-659-3801. 23 Bridge Street. Millers Falls, MA.
  • 4pm-5pm – LEGOS: Kids ages 7-12 can join the Indian Orchard Branch Library‘s Lego Questers group! Come have fun with Legos each week at the library. Space is limited; call to sign up. 413-263-6846. 44 Oak Street. Indian Orchard, MA.
  • 5:30pm-6:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Come to Gabriel Abbott Memorial School Gym for a gym group for kids up to age 8. The group is all about indoor active play, but also includes an art project, circle time, and a snack. Siblings welcome. 413-663-6593. 56 N Country Road. Florida, MA.
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: It’s Pajama Storytime at the Monson Free Library! Wear your pajamas and enjoy stories and fun. Happens the second Tuesday of each month. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA.
  • 7:30pm – MUSIC: The M.N. Spear Memorial Library is holding a Ukulele Sing Along the first Tuesday of each month. Come to the library with your ukulele (or other instruments) and have fun playing music with community members of all ages. Ukuleles available at the library. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road. Shutesbury, MA.

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Wednesday, 14th, 2014

Wednesday, May 14, 4pm – LOCAL HISTORY: Early suffragist and publisher of The Nautilus, Elizabeth Towne, placed a time capsule under her home and office in Holyoke over 100 years ago. You can join the Wistariahurst Museum is revisiting this time capsule and learning about Towne’s life and Holyoke in the 1900s. 413-322-5660. 238 Cabot Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, May 14, 4pm-5pm – BOOK GROUP: Young adults can come to a book group at the Forbes Library. Read The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood and discuss it with your peers. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.

Wednesday, May 14, 6:30pm-8:30pm – PLANT STUDIES: Learn about tree identification at the Dickinson Memorial Library with Michael Wojtech, author of Bark: A Field Guide to Trees of the Northeast, as part of the Northfield’s Woodlands series of programs. This is the first in a two-part program with Wojtech – part one is an animated lecture on tree identification in New England, and part two, which takes place from on May 17 9am-11am, is an outdoor workshop focused on identifying trees and learning about their bark. Older students interested in plants and ecology will enjoy this program. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.

ONGOING FOR WEDNESDAYS (Always double check events before heading out. To add your ongoing event/activity here, email us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com)

  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s infant/toddler group runs every Wednesday. Kids age 2 and under can explore age-appropriate toys and the playroom, and enjoy a snack and circle time. Please no children or siblings over age 2. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids from birth to age five and their caregivers can come to the First Congregational Church of Hatfield for playgroup, including snacks, stories, and songs. 413-586-4998 x102. 41 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Cummington Family Center for playgroup for kids 5 and under! There will be stories, arts and crafts, songs, and playtime. Takes place at Community House. Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: There will be a loosely structured playgroup at the Clapp Memorial Library every Wednesday for kids from birth to age five. 413-323-0417. 19 South Main Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: There will be playgroup every Wednesday at the Lenox Community Center. 413-464-5095. 65 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime at the Holyoke Public Library. 413-322-5640. 335 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Come by the Westhampton Library for playgroup the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Features games, arts and crafts, and storytime. For kids 8 and under. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA.
  • 10:15am-11:15am – STORYTIME: Kids of all ages and their families are invited to the Carnegie Public Library for a weekly storytime, complete with crafts, stories, activities, and snacks. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Edwards Library on the first and third Wednesday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 30 East Street. Southampton, MA
  • 10am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime at the New Marlborough Library. 413-464-5095. 1 Mill River-Great Barrington Road. New Marlborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Erving Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. Northfield Road. Erving, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Wendell Free Library for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 7 Wendell Depot Road. Wendell, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly Tales and Tunes playgroup at the Leverett Library for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup at the Gateway Family Center every Wednesday and Friday. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: It’s storytime at the Monson Free Library for kids ages 2-5! Come by for stories, snacks, crafts, and fun. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA.
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Come to the Mason Square Branch Library for storytime, songs, and crafts. For ages 3-8. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Weekly story hour at the Tilton Library. 413-665-4683. 75 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Join the Dickinson Memorial Library for storytime every Wednesday. There will be movement, stories, music, crafts, and a snack. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Preschoolers and their caregivers can come to storytime at the Dickinson Memorial Library every Wednesday for stories, music, movement, and crafts. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 1pm-2:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Every Wednesday, the Salasin Center is holding a “Parents Supporting Parents” support group. Parents and grandparents can come connect and discuss parenting in this safe environment. Free childcare is available. Please call for more info or to sign up for childcare. 413-774-4307. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 3pm – CHESS: Chess Club is every Wednesday at the Bushnell-Sage Library! Come to the library and make new friends while improving your chess skills. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 3:30pm – LEGOS: Have fun with LEGOs the second Wednesday of each month at the Lanesborough Public Library! 413-442-0222. 83 Main Street. Lanesborough, MA.
  • 4pm-5pm – LEGOS: The Berkshire Athenaeum hosts LEGO Club on the third Wednesday of each month. Kids can use LEGOs to experiment with basic principles of architecture, physics, and design. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm – CHESS: Kids from kindergarten to 8th grade can drop by the East Longmeadow Public Library for chess! This weekly program is open to kids of all skill levels, from beginner to chess pro. Come make new friends and improve your chess skills. 413-525-5400 x4. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – WRITING: Forbes Library holds a writing group for children and young adults the third Wednesday of each month. Come do some free writing, story workshopping, and do exercises to beat writer’s block. All ages welcome. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 6:30pm – STORYTIME: Pajama storytime for kids ages 3-6 at the East Longmeadow Library. 413-525-5400 x1506. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA.
  • 7:30pm-10:30pm – DANCE: Beginners and people of all skill levels can come dance the night away at Downtown Amherst Contra! This is a great way to have fun and meet new people in a low-pressure environment. Beginners can show up at 7 for a learning session. Best for older students and adults. Every Wednesday except the second Wednesday of each month. 99 Main Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Thursday, May 15th, 2014

Thursday, May 15, TBA – THEATER: Northampton High School Theater presents a production of The Odd Couple, a comedy written by Neil Simon that premiered on Broadway in 1965. This performance takes place in the Black Box Theater. 380 Elm Street. Northampton, MA.

Thursday, May 15, 12noon-10pm – FOOD FESTIVAL: The World Kielbasa Festival is returning to Chicopee for the first time since 1997! Don’t miss this world-famous celebration of all things Polish, including Polish music, dancing, pierogies, and of course, kielbasa. There will also be live music, a carnival, competitions, presentations, and more. Please see the Kielbasa Festival website for more information and a history of the event. The Festival runs from May 15-May 18 at Szot Park. Chicopee, MA. $

Thursday, May 15, 12:15pm – ART: This week’s Museums a la Carte lecture at the Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts is, “How to Buy Fine Art Without a Spare Million in Pocket Change,” with Leonard D. DeMaio. He will discuss art collecting, where to look, what to buy, and what not to buy. Older students interested in art will enjoy this talk. 800-625-7738. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. >$

Thursday, May 15, 5pm – COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: May 15 is Third Thursday in Turners Falls! This month’s theme is “The Nature of Things,” and the evening includes tons of events relating to the river, including workshops, science demonstrations, wildlife exhibitions, performances, installations, and more. There is something for all ages at this fun event, which highlights some of the awesome things Turners Falls has to offer. 413-230-9910. Turners Falls, MA.

Thursday, May 15, 6pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Dakin Pioneer Valley Humane Society is offering a workshop for parents and dog owners titled, “The Dog and Baby Connection.” The workshop aims to teach parents how to set dogs up for success and keep children safe as the family grows. Dogs can sometimes have a hard time with new additions to the family and changes in the family dynamic, and this workshop is designed to help parents and caregivers learn how to include dogs in family activities, identify realistic expectations, and learn about proper supervision and safety measures that can be taken in order to ensure that every member of the family is happy and safe. Please register. 413-781-4000. 171 Union Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, May 15, 6pm-7pm – PARENT WORKSHOP: Drs. Richard Ginsburg and Jonathan Schwab present, “Kids and Concussions: What Parents Should Know,” at the Hadley Farms Meeting House. This workshop is meant to help parents understand the dangers of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), how to prevent them, and how to safely encourage and support their children as they participate in sports. Registration is required. 888-554-4234. Route 9. Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, May 15, 6:30pm-8:30pm – PHOTOGRAPHY/NATURE STUDIES: As part of Turners Falls’ Third Thursday event, Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center is offering a photography walk with Beth Reynolds. Bring along a camera (and tripod if you have one) and learn how to take high-quality nature shots while packing light. Naturalist Beth Bazler will also be at this event to teach about the nature and geography of the area. Students ages 10 and up who are interested in nature or landscape photography will enjoy this educational workshop. Call to register and to receive directions. 800-859-2960. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, May 15, 7pm – OUTDOOR ADVENTURE: John and Derek Barber will be at the Westhampton Public Library to discuss their adventures backpacking in the Grand Canyon. They will share photos and stories from their trip, and will answer any questions you may have. People of all ages who are interested in the outdoor or taking their own backpacking trip will enjoy this talk. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA.

Thursday, May 15, 7:30pm – HISTORY: Author and Amherst College history professor Kevin Sweeney presents, “Guns in Early America: Busting the Myth of Colonial Sharpshooters,” with the Hatfield Historical Society at the Hatfield Congregational Church. Professor Sweeney will discuss the history of guns in colonial America and the image of the well-armed colonists who were skilled firearms users. Is this a myth, or is it reality? What types of guns did most colonists own, and were they actually skilled marksmen? Find out at this informative talk! Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)

ONGOING FOR THURSDAYS (To add your ongoing event/activity here, email us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com)

  • 9am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The CHP Family Center is holding a “Toddler Steps” playgroup for kids 18 months to three years. Takes place at CHP Family Services Building every Tuesday and Thursday. 413-464-5095. Great Barrington, MA (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, stories, snacks, and circle time. For pre-K children and their siblings. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, lower level. Northampton, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The South Hadley Family Center offers playgroups every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am at All Saints Episcopal Church. Stop by for open play, crafts, stories, music, and more. 413-533-7096. 7 Woodbridge Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Belchertown Family Center is open every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 9:30am-12noon for drop-in playgroup. 413-283-7594. 720 Franklin Street. Belchertown, MA.
  • 9:45am-10:45am – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Amelia Park Children’s Museum offers weekly arts and crafts activities for kids. The theme changes each week, but the activity is always fun, educational, and often connected to other things at the museum. 413-572-4014. 29 South Broad Street. Westfield, MA.
  • 10am – MOVEMENT: The Music and Movement program with Laurie and Tom will be at the Carnegie Library every Thursday. Young children and their caregivers are invited to this fun, free program. 413-863-3214. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA.
  • 10am-11am – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: New parents and their infants from birth to one year are invited to a support group at the Greenwood Children’s Center. Come share stories about the new little one in your life. 413-565-4163. 231 Maple Road. Longmeadow, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – ROLLERSKATING: Kids age 6 and under can come to Interskate 91 North for skating, roller racers, games, music, and more! Admission for kids includes snack and skate rental. More info here. 413-586-8344. 367 Russell Street (Inside of Hampshire Mall). Hadley, MA. >$
  • 10am-12noon – STORYTIME: The Dalton Free Public Library offers a weekly storytime, which includes stories, short films, and crafts, all designed to help kids with social and literacy skills. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA.
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn group at the Berkshire Athenaeum every Thursday includes stories, songs, and games. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Stop by the New Salem Library every Thursday for nursery rhymes, tales, and tunes. 978-544-6334. 23 S Main Street. New Salem, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Sponsored by the Community Health Program (CHP), Bushnell-Sage Library is hosting a Sing-A-Song playgroup for kids 0-5 and their caregivers. Runs every Thursday. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PARENT WORKSHOP: MotherWoman is returning to the Hilltowns for a monthly drop-in group for mothers of young children. The group offers a supportive environment for mothers to discuss motherhood and all aspects of raising young children. Takes place at the Cummington Family Center on the second Thursday of each month. 413-634-8853. 33 Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: The Hatfield Public Library holds a storytime for kids 5 and under every Thursday! Come to the library for stories and fun. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Story hour: stories, songs, finger plays, crafts and more for preschool-age children; siblings welcome. Hatfield Library. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME: Join the Emily Williston Memorial Library for storytime every Thursday! There will be snacks, stories, and crafts. 413-529-1605. 9 Park Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 11am-11:45am – STORYTIME: Come by the Lenox Library for preschool storycraft. Kids ages 3-5 can hear stories, sing songs, and do a related craft activity. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-5pm – CHESS: Every second and fourth Thursday, kids are invited to the Mason Library for chess. There will no instruction provided, so this event is best for kids who already have an understanding of the game. This is a great place to come play with peers, make new friends, and improve your chess skills in a relaxed and supportive environment. 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street. Great Barrington, MA.
  • 3:30pm-6:30pm – FAMILY FUN: The Salasin Center will be open for family time every Thursday. Come by for activities to do with the whole family. 413-774-4307 x4. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA.
  • 4:30-6pm – COMMUNITY MEAL/MOVIE: The Amherst Survival Center serves a free community meal every Thursday and screens a film for the community to enjoy together. Bring your family and come enjoy an evening with your community while learning about the work of the ASC! 413-549-3968. 138 Sunderland Road. North Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, May 16th, 2014

Friday, May 16, TBA – THEATER: Northampton High School Theater presents a production of The Odd Couple, a comedy written by Neil Simon that premiered on Broadway in 1965. This performance takes place in the Black Box Theater. 380 Elm Street. Northampton, MA.

Friday, May 16, 7:45am – BIRD STUDIES: Discover the birds of Williamstown with the Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation and Leslie Reed-Evans at the Mt. Greylock Trails. This walk will teach bird identification, wildflower identification, and general ecology. People of all ages and skill levels who want to learn about birds and nature are welcome to attend this walk. 413-458-2494. Hopper Road. Williamstown, MA.

Friday, May 16, 12noon-10pm – FOOD FESTIVAL: The World Kielbasa Festival is returning to Chicopee for the first time since 1997! Don’t miss this world-famous celebration of all things Polish, including Polish music, dancing, pierogies, and of course, kielbasa. There will also be live music, a carnival, competitions, presentations, and more. Please see the Kielbasa Festival website for more information and a history of the event. The Festival runs from May 15-May 18 at Szot Park. Chicopee, MA. $

Friday, May 16, 3:30pm-4:30pm – CRAFTS/PLANT STUDIES: Kids can make self-watering planters and grass heads at the Forbes Library on May 16. Celebrate Spring with this fun craft activity. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.

Friday, May 16, 5pm-6pm – KNITTING: Are your kids interested in knitting? The Sunderland Public Library is offering a knitting event for teens and tweens in grades 5-12. Come work on a project or learn to knit for the first time! 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA.

Friday, May 16, 7pm – THEATER: Starlight’s Youth Theatre presents a production of Bye Bye Birdie at the Academy of Music. This classic ’50s musical comedy tells the story of Conrad Birdie, an Elvis Presley-like rockstar who is about to be inducted into the Army. But, before he leaves, he must kiss an ordinary American teen goodbye on the Ed Sullivan Show. The play tells of the drama that unfolds as teens go wild with the excitement of having Birdie in town. All ages will enjoy this fun musical comedy that stars nearly 70 local teens! Tickets can be purchased in advance. Performances Friday & Saturday at 7pm, and Saturday & Sunday at 2pm. 413-584-9032 x105. 274 Main Street. Northampton, MA. $$

Friday, May 16, 8pm – THEATER: The Berkshire Community College Players present a performance of Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein. Based on the comedy film of the same name, this play is about Frederick Frankenstein, the grandson of the infamous Victor Frankenstein, who inherits his family’s estate in Transylvania and brings a creature back to life. Teens and adults will love this hilarious performance, and fans of the movie will enjoy seeing it brought to life on stage. Takes place in Boland Theatre. Tickets are available in advance. 413-499-0886. 1350 West Street. Pittsfield, MA. $$

ONGOING FOR FRIDAYS (To add your ongoing event/activity here, email us at hilltownfamilies@gmail.com)

11:30am-12:30pm – PRENATAL YOGA: Open to all trimesters and all levels of yoga experience. No registration necessary. For info visit HRYMCA website or call Courtney at 413-303-1246. Hampshire Regional YMCA, 286 Prospect Street. Northampton, MA ($10 for non-members, free for HRYMCA members)

  • 9am-12oon – PLAYGROUP: The Amherst Family Center has drop-in playgroups Monday-Friday, including snacks, circle time, activities, and more. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. North Amherst, MA
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Cummington Family Center for playgroup for kids 5 and under! There will be stories, arts and crafts, songs, and playtime. Takes place at Community House. Main Street. Cummington, MA.
  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Shutesbury Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Sponsored by Community Network for Children. 978-544-5157. 23 West Pelham Road. Shutesbury, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn group for young kids at Sunderland Elementary. 1 Swampfield Drive. Sunderland, MA.
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Kids ages 0-5 and their caregivers can stop by Whole Children for playgroup, featuring snacks and playtime. 37 Russell Street. Hadley, MA.
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Come watch preschool videos at the Berkshire Athenaeum every Friday! 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Palmer Monson Family Network’s drop-in playgroup runs every Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and is open to families with young children. Creative play, snack time, and circle time. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Preschool-aged kids can come to the Stockbridge Library for StoryCraft, a storytime and craft time with Miss Vicky! Siblings are welcome. 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly playgroup at Sunderland Elementary School for kids 5 and under. Every Tuesday and Friday. Old Amherst Road. Sunderland, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup at the Gateway Family Center every Wednesday and Friday. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 10am-12noon. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PARENT WORKSHOP: The Gateway Family Center is offering a weekly workshop for parents and infants 0-12 months titled “Nurturing Your Baby.” Learn infant massage, learn about infant development, meet other parents and babies, and more. This is a great workshop for parents and their young children to do together. Childcare for older children is available. Please register. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA.
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Weekly “Skip and Dip” playgroup at Berkshire South RCC. 413-464-5095. 15 Crissey Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Chesterfield Community Center on the first and third Friday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. Chesterfield, MA.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for little ones at the Pelham Library! 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Weekly fitWIC playgroup at CHP Family Services Building. 413-464-5095. 442 Stockbridge Road. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – STORYTIME: Weekly storytime for preschoolers at the Sunderland Public Library. Features stories, songs, and crafts. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA.
  • 11am-11:30am – STORYTIME: The Berkshire Museum’s weekly Museum Adventures program features stories, songs, dancing, play time, scavenger hunts, and more, and is open to kids 18 months to 3 years. It’s a great way for young kids to explore some of what the museum has to offer! Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. $
  • 11am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Play and Learn Group at Lanesborough Town Hall, featuring educational playthings, snack, art project, and circle time. For kids walking-age to five years. 413-663-6593. 83 N Main Street. Lanesborough, MA.
  • 12:30pm-2pm – PARENT/CHILD WORKSHOP: The Storrs Library‘s Pathway for Parents is a program for families with their first baby (0-15 months). Learn about the importance of reading, music, and interactive play, and how these can benefit your new baby. Please call to sign up. 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA.
  • 2:15pm-4pm – LEGOS: The Dickinson Memorial Library’s LEGO Club meets the second Friday of each month. Come make friends and build with LEGOs. Best for kids in grade 3 and up. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA.
  • 5:30pm – BOOK CLUB: Kids in grades 2-4 can come to the Hatfield Public Library for book club! Book clubs are a great way for kids to read for fun and then discuss books with their peers. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA.
  • 8pm – ASTRONOMY: The Milham Planetarium at Williams College will be open to the public for a planetarium every Friday evening (except 3/24 and 4/4). You can learn about the motions of the planets, the phases of the moon, comets, and much more! Reservations recommended. 413-597-2188. 829 Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Hilltown Families’ list of Weekly Suggested Events is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Buckland, Cummington, Deerfield, Goshen, Plainfield, Shelburne and Westhampton Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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