31 Community Highlights: Cultural Chaos to Outdoor Sculptures. Edwardian Fashions to Bookbinding.

On Sunday, June 14 at 1pm, the Julia Poppins School of Cooking is offering a free workshop at Red Fire Farm on “Keeping Your Bounty Fresh.” Learn how to plan meals using fresh farm produce and how to store and use your farm produce. Adults and older students interested in local food and cooking can learn from this engaging and educational workshop! 7 Carver Street. Granby, MA. (FREE)

Old Mines to Historic Neighborhoods. Cultural Chaos to Outdoor Sculptures. Edwardian Fashions to Bookbinding… 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: SculptureNow and The Mount’s new outdoor exhibition opens on June 13, and there will be a free guided tour on Saturday, June 13 from 3pm-7pm. 26x28x50 features 26 sculptures by 28 regional and national artists, displayed over 50 acres on The Mount’s beautiful grounds and gardens. The exhibition features many unique sculptures made from a variety of materials, both natural and human-made. The artist-led guided tour is a wonderful opportunity to stroll the grounds of the property and learn about the large-scale sculptures – what materials were used, how they were made, how they were transported, how long it took to make them, and more. Students interested in sculpture can attend the free tour to see the works and ask questions about them. Call The Mount at 413-551-5100 for more information. The Mount. 413-551-5100. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)


Garden-Based LearningGuided Walks & ToursBook ArtsCommunity CelebrationsFamily MusicContemporary ArtParent WorkshopCulinary Arts  ♦ Fashion HistoryCommunity SingLocal HistoryLibrary AdventuresCitizen ScientistParents’ Night Out


Learn Local. Play Local. is sponsored in part by the Springfield Museums:


Garden-Based Learning

Saturday, June 13, 10am-3pm – Garden Tour: Discover some of Northampton’s most beautiful residential gardens on the Friends of Forbes Library’s 22nd Annual Garden Tour! Six unique gardens will be on display for you to explore while learning about the art of gardening. Those who love gardening or who want some garden inspiration can come on the tour and ask questions about each garden. This is a great chance to learn about interesting plants and landscape design options that are possible in New England. By transplanting an interest in gardening into your community, you can expand your learning experience by integrating a wide variety of indirectly related interests, like history, food security, and even math and science.  Tickets available in advance. 413-587-1011. Northampton, MA. ($$)

Monday, June 15, 6pm-8pm – Plant SwapGardening and local food are two interests that can connect children to the seasons, their local environment and with their community, and plant swaps are a terrific community-based resource that support collaborative consumption and learning! Valley Time Trade holds a monthly plant swap at Forbes Library. Come trade plants, tools, and other garden-related items. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Discover local events and resources that make connects and support garden-based learning in our post, Learning through the Lens of Gardens.

Guided Walks & Hikes

Saturday, June 13, 11am – Cemetery Tour: Northampton’s Bridge Street Cemetery has a rich history and offers a fascinating look into the town’s past. The cemetery was established in 1663 and offers a look back 350 years into the past! Discover the oldest parts of the cemetery on a free tour organized by Historic Northampton and the Ward Three Neighborhood Association, and led by local author Susan Stinson, on June 13 at 11am. There is a plan in the works to restore the cemetery and inform residents about its interesting history, and this tour is a great starting point for anyone who wants to learn more about the oldest parts of the cemetery and Northampton’s early history. Call Historic Northampton at 413-584-6011 for more information. Meet at the cemetery entrance on Parsons Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, June 13, 10am-12noon – Old Mill Trail: Are you looking for an opportunity to get outdoors with the family? The Housatonic Valley Association is leading a free hike for families on the Old Mill Trail in Hinsdale on June 13 from 10am-12noon. This guided hike will teach families about the ecology and natural history of the Housatonic River, and kids can participate in a fun nature scavenger hunt. This hike is a great chance for families with kids of all ages, even young children, to get outdoors and explore nature together. Call 413-394-9796 to register and find out meeting location. Hinsdale, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, June 13, 12noon-3pm – Brewer Road Neighborhood: Take a tour of the Brewer Road neighborhood with the Pelham Historical Society. The 19th-century neighborhood was once home to one of Pelham’s wealthiest families, but is now mostly cellar holes and stone walls. Older students interested in learning more about this unique historic neighborhood will enjoy the walking tour. Meet at the Historical Complex and please call to sign up. 413-253-1601. 351 Amherst Road. Pelham, MA.

Sunday, June 14, 10am-11:30am – Turners Falls Canal: The Great Falls Discovery Center is hosting a canal-side nature and history walk. Participants can gain a deeper understanding of local history and ecology by exploring the Turners Falls Canal and learning about plants, animals, and mill history. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, June 14, 1pm-4pm – Loudville Lead Mine: The Loudville Lead Mine is a large local mine that was first worked over 300 years ago, and was worked on-and-off through the 1800s, up until 1865. Learn about the history of the mine and its present-day status on a history walk with the Pioneer Valley Institute and Wayne Perrea. Perrea, who grew up near the mine, will share stories from past centuries and his childhood, which was spent exploring the mine. He will also discuss the mine’s specific operations, who worked there, what it was like for the workers, and the mine’s geological significance. This walk is open to all who are interested, and those who want to learn more about local history will have a blast exploring the mine and learning about its impact on the community when it was active. Email rdlittle2000@aol.com or call 413-527-8536 for the meeting location. Children can attend for free with a paying adult. Westhampton, MA. (>$)

Sunday, June 14, 2pm – Bradley Farm Trail: Celebrate Lanesborough’s 250th anniversary on a hike at the Bradley Farm Trail at Mt. Greylock. Learn about the landscape and the town’s prominent founding family. Best for students interested in local history and who enjoy hiking. Meet at the visitor’s center. Call for more info. 413-499-4262. 30 Rockwell Road. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)

Book Arts

Saturday, June 13, 10am – Bookbinding: Learn about bookbinding at the Berkshire Museum‘s Learner’s Lab. Local artist Michael Vincent Bushy will present several different bookbinding techniques that can be done at home. Older students interested in books, bookmaking, and crafts would enjoy this program. Free with museum admission. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. ($)

Community Celebrations

Saturday, June 13, 10am-3pm – Becket Musical Jamboree: In honor of Becket’s 250th anniversary, the Becket Musical Jamboree festival will take place at Jacob’s Pillow. Many talented musicians will perform at this celebratory, intergenerational event, and there will also be kids’ activities and Jacob’s Pillow’s regular activities. Celebrate 250 years of Becket at this fun day-long celebration! 413-243-9919. 358 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, June 13, 12noon-7pm – Cultural Chaos: On June 13, come to Cultural Chaos, a street festival featuring tons of great live music, a makers market, open studios, food, hands-on activities, and a variety of performances and other events. A full list of events and activities can be found on the Cultural Chaos website. There’s something for all ages at this day-long street festival, which is a great way to celebrate Easthampton. 413-527-8278. Cottage Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, June 18, 5pm-8pm – 3rd Thursday in Pittsfield: Upstreet Pittsfield’s family friendly street festival, 3rd Thursdays, happens every third Thursday through October! Come celebrate and explore Pittsfield while participating in fun activities, watching performances, and eating great food. 413-499-9348. Pittsfield, MA (FREE)

Thursday, June 18, 5pm-9pm – Third Thursday in Turners Falls: June 18th is Third Thursday in Turners Falls! This month’s theme is “Creature Feature” and there will be art to look at, live music by Home Body, crafts projects, 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. (FREE)

Thursday, June 18, 5pm-9pm; Friday, June 19, 5pm-10pm – Taste of Amherst: The Annual Taste of Amherst festival runs from June 18-21 on the Amherst Town Common. Come try some of the Valley’s best food from restaurants, stores, stands, and more, and enjoy live entertainment, kids’ activities, games, and food demonstrations. Taste of Amherst is a fun chance to explore the many delicious foods available in town while supporting local businesses and spending time with community members. Downtown. Amherst, MA.

Family Music

Saturday, June 13, 11:30am – The Pop Ups: The Pop Ups will perform their “electro-acoustic kindie pop” music at MASS MoCA, giving more than just a concert — it’s an educational adventure chock-full of art, handmade puppets, surprise costume changes, silly dances, and lots of laughter.  413-662-2111. 1040 MASS MoCA Way. North Adams, MA. ($)

Check out this archived episode of the Hilltown Family Variety Show with guest DJ, Jacob Stein of The Pop Ups:

Contemporary Art

Saturday, June 13, 3pm-7pm – Guided Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit: SculptureNow and The Mount’s new outdoor exhibition opens on June 13, and there will be a free guided tour from 3pm-7pm. 26x28x50 features 26 sculptures by 28 regional and national artists, displayed over 50 acres on The Mount’s beautiful grounds and gardens. The exhibition features many unique sculptures made from a variety of materials, both natural and human-made. The artist-led guided tour is a wonderful opportunity to stroll the grounds of the property and learn about the large-scale sculptures – what materials were used, how they were made, how they were transported, how long it took to make them, and more. Students interested in sculpture can attend the free tour to see the works and ask questions about them. Call The Mount at 413-551-5100 for more information. The Mount. 413-551-5100. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Parent Workshop

Saturday, June 13, 10am-12noon – Screen Time: The Gill-Montague CFCE is offering a free parent workshop – “Screen Time: What’s Right For Your Child?” at Hillcrest Elementary School. Parents/caregivers of young children can come learn how to make sure their children are getting the right kinds of stimulation at the right developmental stages, and why screen time is not recommended for children under age 2. The workshop focuses on how to enrich a child’s brain. Call to reserve a spot ASAP. Childcare and a snack provided. 413-863-9526. 30 Griswold Street. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, June 17, 6:30pm-8:30pm – Anxiety: Psychotherapist Lynn Lyons will lead a free parent-teacher workshop at Northampton High School titled “Anxious Kids, Anxious Parents.” Parents/caregivers and teachers of children and teens can attend this workshop to learn how to handle and prevent anxiety. 413-584-1344. 380 Elm Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Culinary Arts

Sunday, June 14, 1pm – Fresh Farm Produce: The Julia Poppins School of Cooking is offering a free workshop at Red Fire Farm on “Keeping Your Bounty Fresh.” Learn how to plan meals using fresh farm produce and how to store and use your farm produce. Adults and older students interested in local food and cooking can learn from this engaging and educational workshop! 7 Carver Street. Granby, MA. (FREE)

Fashion History

Sunday, June 14, 2pm – Fashion/Edwardian Lady: Performer Kandie Carle will perform “The Edwardian Lady, Dressing from Corset to Gloves” at the Noble and Cooley Center for Historic Preservation. Ages 8 and up can attend this show to learn about the Edwardian period and historical fashion. 413-357-6321. 42 Water Street. Granville, MA. ($)

Learning about our local history through the lens of silk can help shed some light on understanding our regions industrial past, how local architecture relates to this past, and help us connect more with the history of our local landscape. Through self-guided walking tours, museum visits, tree identification and special hands-on learning opportunities, families can explore the world of silk right here in the Pioneer Valley! Read more in our post, Exploring Local History Through Textiles.

Community Sing

Sunday, June 14, 5:30pm-8pm – Intergenerational Sing: Earthdance is holding a community sing (5:30pm) and potluck (7pm) tonight! Penny Schultz, Earthdance co-founder, brings community members together through song. This 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)

Local History

Sunday, June 14, 6pm – Storytelling: Bascom Lodge presents a Berkshire Trails and Tails program with historical storyteller Shirley Sutton. Learn about lost treasure, Native Americans, strange deaths, and other mysterious happenings in the Berkshires at this exciting talk. 413-743-1591. 3 Summit Road. Adams, MA. (FREE)

Library Adventures

Saturday, June 13, 1pm – Bushnell-Sage Library: The Bushnell-Sage Library will have a performance by Galileo the Magician on June 13! Kids will love this fun magic show! 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Monday, June 15, 6pm – Tilton Library: Say hello to summer at the Tilton Library’s Summer Kick-Off event on June 15! There will be hot dogs, ice cream, and live music for all. 413-665-4683. 75 North Main Street. South Deerfield, MA. (FREE)

Monday, June 15, 6pm – Sunderland Library: Jungle Jim will teach kids what it takes to be a superhero at the Sunderland Public Library on June 15. Kids will love this fun performance! 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, June 18, 12noon-2pm – Monson Library: Kick off summer reading at Monson Free Library on June 18. There will be superhero PJ storytime, anime, mythology, intro to meditation for ages 15 and up, and more. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)

Citizen Scientist

Friday, June 19, 12noon-10pm: Bioblitz/Ecology: Families can spend Friday, June 19 from 12noon-10pm and Saturday, June 20 from 8am-12noon at Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary (Holmes Road, Pittsfield, MA) participating in the 6th Annual Berkshire BioBlitz. The BioBlitz, which takes place over a full 24-hour period, invites the public, biologists, naturalists, and environmentalists to come together with the goal of identifying and cataloging all living species within Canoe Meadows. There will be experts on hand to assist with identification and teach about the different species found in the sanctuary, and there will be walks, talks, demonstrations, and more to engage participants and teach about local ecology and natural history. This is a unique and exciting free citizen science opportunity for the entire family – all ages can help look for plants, animals, and fungi and learn how to identify them. The BioBlitz will get the whole family interested in and excited about science, nature, and conservation. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Parents’ Night Out

Tuesday, June 16, 6:30pm – Lawn Concert: Musical Moments at Amelia’s Garden, the Amelia Park Ice Arena summer concert series, continues with a performance by the Westfield High School Jazz Band. This concert is fun for the whole family – bring lawn chairs, pack a picnic dinner, and enjoy the sunset while listening to great music. 413-568-2503. 21 South Broad Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, June 17, 6:30pm – Folk Music: Enjoy an evening of folk music at one of the Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum‘s Wednesday Folk Traditions concerts. This week features Layaali Arabic Music Ensemble. 413-584-4699. 130 River Drive. Hadley, MA. ($)

Thursday, June 18, 7:30pm – Shakespeare: The Hampshire Shakespeare Company will perform Romeo and Juliet at the UMass Center for Renaissance Studies. Theater fans can enjoy seeing Shakespeare’s famous tragedy outdoors this summer. Performances June 17-21 and 24-28. Tickets available in advance. 650 East Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. ($$)

Friday, June 19, 7pm-9:30pm – Jazz Music: Django in June is a yearly event that takes place at the Academy of Music and celebrates the musical genre associated with French Gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt. Also known as “gypsy jazz,” “hot jazz,” or “jazz manouche,” this unique genre features percussive rhythm and other distinguishing characteristics. RP Quartet, Tim Kliphuis, and Joscho Stephan will perform their own take on the genre at the Academy of Music on June 19. Older students interested in music and jazz will love this unique concert. Tickets available in advance. 413-584-9032. 274 Main Street. Northampton, MA. ($$$)


Learn Local. Play Local. is supported in part by a grant from the Buckland, Colrain, Cummington, Deerfield, Hadley, Longmeadow, Montgomery, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne, Sunderland, Westhampton, and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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