Suggested Events for March 26th-April 1st, 2016

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

“Thank you for your newsletter. I love reading it, and find it so supportive and informative for our family.” – Katie Keach

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

Nearly 55 summer camps & programs, in and around western MA, to choose from with new camps added every week!

Check out our featured post, 2016 Summer Camps and Programs in Western MA for a comprehensive list of summer camps & programs in the region! Summer opportunities featured range from music, arts & crafts, wilderness adventures, dance, performance art, farming, rock climbing, STEM, pre-college, sports, theater… to good old 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

Mar 29

Montessori School of Northampton (MSN) and Amherst Montessori School (AMS) present the film Most Likely to Succeed, the documentary that has been inspiring conversation about a model of education that prepares students for the 21st century, on Tuesday, March 29 at 6:30pm at Amherst College‘s Pruyne Auditorium, Fayerweather Hall. The film is free and open to the public. Corey Hadden, MSN’s middle school teacher, observes, “What the film reveals as new about what motivates students–opportunities to act on their curiosity, find a deep connection with their work, and work with their peers–has been at the heart of a Montessori education for over a hundred years.” Seating is limited. Tickets can be reserved at info@northamptonmontessori.org.

Apr 18-22

Spend some time outside during spring break! There are a few spaces left in the Hartsbrook April Farm Camp. Spring is here and baby goats, sheep, chicks, pigs will soon join the new calf on their farm. Spend the April break tending the animals, learning crafts and exploring the land on their beautiful campus. Enjoy some fresh air, purposeful work and the fun of working with fellow campers. Their spring vacation camp is for children 6-12 years old. April 18-22, 8:45am to 3pm. Registration at hartsbrook.org. Questions? Call 413-586-1908 x116

Apr 2

Valley Vegfest happens Saturday, April 2nd from 10am-4pm at JFK Middle School, Bridge Road, Northampton. Featuring passionate speakers, vegan food vendors, veg-friendly products, and non-profit organizations dedicated to healthy living, animal welfare, and the environment. Learn about and sample delicious healthy new foods. Enjoy entertainment and activities for kids. Speakers include: Jasmin Singer, co-host of Our Hen House; Ginny Messina, dietitian and author of Vegan for Her; psychologist and author Dr. Casey Taft; and Sarah Swingle of the Humane Society of the United States. There will also be discussions and demonstrations. Admission is free — donations are welcomed. Details at www.valleyveg.org.

Summer Weekly Art & Swim Workshops at Meadowedge for ages 5-11 . Sign up now for sessions June 20-August 8: Stone Carving, Paper Mache Sea Creatures, Treasure Pouches/Hunt and more! Some space still available for Spring Art Classes, ages 4-11. Adult Carve and Print Workshop on Thursday, March 21, 6:30pm. Text or call Cynthia: 413-219-7807; cfulton@meadowedgeart.com. Visit www.meadowedgeart.org for more information.

Apr 24 – May 22

Biocitizen’s Drawing on Nature is an environmental art class that nurtures biophilia & the skills of transporting nature into the sketchbook with pencils & paints & into sculpture with clay—& features hikes & plein aire activities. Introductory concepts of composition, line, form, value, texture, color and pattern are used to inspire students’ imaginations & expressions. The rigor of botanical illustration is balanced with the fun of loose gesture drawings & experiments in clay. Students get a notebook & a travel watercolor set that they take home. Tuition is $230.00 for 20 hours instruction & all materials. Classes are Sundays, 10am–2pm, from Apr 24-May 22, 2016. Ages: 9-12 Contact: 413-320-0522 ♦ info@biocitizen.orgwww.biocitizen.org

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

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


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
March 26-April 1, 2016

SaturdaySunday
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Suggest an Event | Forecast | Museum Passes | Weekly eNewsletter | Farmers’ Markets | Libraries| Berkshire Family Fun | Advertise/Sponsorship | en Español

Donate Now Events Happening in the Hilltowns

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Ongoing Saturday Events

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. This week, guest DJ Liz DeRoche (a.k.a. The Singing Lizard) takes our listeners on a musical adventure exploring diversity in music. Liz showcases a wide variety of genres that are as unique and diverse as we are.  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 over 8 years!

Saturday, March 26, various times
EXHIBIT: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY
International Women’s Day has a rich history since its inception in 1909. It began as a socialist event, celebrating working women. It has since broadened its scope to include all women, with new themes every year. Past themes have included “women in decision-making,” “women and HIV/AIDS,” and “equality for women is progress for all.” You can explore the history of this celebratory day through an exhibit of historic International Women’s Day posters. These posters will be on display at the Holyoke Public Library (Monday-Thursday 8:30am-8:30pm; Friday and Saturday 8:30am-4pm; 250 Chestnut Street) and the Holyoke Heritage State Park visitor center (Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 4pm; 221 Appleton Street) until March 29. 413 534 1723. Holyoke MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 9am-11am
SERVICE-BASED LEARNING/FOOD SECURITY

Thank you to our premier sponsor, Hilltown Tree & Garden!

Celebrate National Nutrition Month at this Hilltown Families Family Volunteer Day with The Food Bank of Western MA. Volunteering together teaches children positive values, like kindness, empathy and tolerance, and opens up channels of communication between parent and child. Engaging children in community service can increase their participation as future volunteers, helping to create more resilient and sustainable communities. There will be a number of educational and hands-on activities for children and their caregivers at this event. Register by calling 413-247-9738 x135. 97 North Hatfield Road. Hatfield, MA (VOLUNTEER)

Saturday, March 26, 9:30am and 11:00am
COMMUNITY MEAL/EASTER BREAKFAST
Families can enjoy breakfast with the Easter Bunny at Look Park. Reservations are required. 413-584-5457. 300 N Main St. Florence, MA. (>$)

Saturday, March 26, 9:30-11:30
SPRING CELEBRATION/INTERGENERATIONAL
Enjoy a community meal, decorate eggs, and make butterfly gardens at Community Action Family Center. All participants will receive a free book! There will also be a playroom open for children to engage in unstructured play. The Community Action Family Center provides intergenerational programming and support for families and youth. 413-475-1555. 90 Federal Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 9:30am-12:30pm
SERVICE-BASED LEARNING/NATURE PROTECTION TRAINING
Individuals on Kestrel Land Trust’s “Stew Crew” work as volunteers monitoring one or more of the Land Trust’s conservation properties. These volunteers help ensure that their communities can continue to enjoy preserved natural spaces. These natural spaces allow communities to thrive by connecting to the area where they live, by educating themselves on local wildlife or simply enjoying the land. Current volunteers are invited to this training session to keep their skills sharp. If you are not already involved but are interested in becoming a volunteer, attend this session to learn conservation skills and find out what being a member of the “Stew Crew” entails. There will be two training sessions, one on Saturday March 26th in Easthampton and one on Saturday April 16th in Pelham. Please only attend one session as the content will be similar. Arrive early for coffee,refreshments, and conversation. Registration is required. For more information and to register please email brittany@kestreltrust.org or call 413-549-1097. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 9:30am-4pm
MAPLE SUGARING/LIVING HISTORY
Maple sugaring is a centuries-old tradition in New England, and the seasonal industry remains an important part of the foundation upon which local agricultural is built. The production of maple syrup is historically important in part because it is one of few North American agricultural processes that is not a European colonial import. The sugar season is weather dependent since the sap needs to thaw in order for it to be harvested. Sugaring, therefore, is not only a historic tradition and a thriving part of industry; sugar harvesting signals the start of Spring! Come to Old Sturbridge Village on a Maple Day (starting Saturday March 26, Sunday March 27 9:30am-4pm) in March to witness maple harvesting techniques, including Native American methods, early 19th-century New England techniques, 20th century metal buckets, and contemporary tubing. 800-733-1830. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. ($)

Saturday, March 26, 9:45am
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
Children ages 7 years and younger are invited to search for over 7,000 eggs at Mittineague Park. Between 9:45 and 10:30am, attendees will have a chance to meet the Easter Bunny and receive a candy treat. Bring your camera for pictures. The egg hunt will begin promptly at 10:30am and children will be divided into sections of color-coded age groups: yellow for 2 years and under, pink for 3 to 4 years and purple for 5 to 7 years old. Please do not bring dogs. 413-781-3020. 1695 Westfield St. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 10am
FILM SCREENING/NATURE STUDIES/MUSIC
Through The Woods is a story of natural exploration, musical composition, and community. Parents’ Choice Award winning musicians, The Okee Dokee Brothers, set out to hike the Appalachian Trail, learn the music of the land and make a documentary at the same time. This family film provides an opportunity to talk to your children about the ways in which culture affects art, and how to learn from the people you meet on life’s journey. This special screening at Amherst Cinema also includes a live performance of Shiprock and Anchordog, a multimedia performance about traveling dogs. All ages welcome. 413-253-2547 x110. 28 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (>$)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-11:30am
CARPENTRY/LOCAL WILDLIFE
By putting a bat house on your property, you can help bats who may not have a safe place to live due to deforestation. Attracting bats near your home also allows you to observe them. In this workshop at the Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary you will be taught how to build a bat box and where to put it in order to attract bats.You will also learn about various species in your area and their natural history. Ages five and up. Call 413-637-0320 to register. Lenox, MA. (Adult $$. Child FREE.)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-12pm
CULINARY ARTS/KNIFE SKILLS
How do you prepare your vegetables? Do you use a specific slicing technique or do you just chop away? Lynn, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, can teach you how to julienne and chiffonade your vegetables, and explain the best technique for each vegetable and dish. The event will take place at RH Conwell Community Education Center. Knives will be provided. Lynn will also teach you how take care of your knives. Make dinnertime more fun and show off your new skills for friends and family. Contact Molly Smith at 413-238-5373 for more information. Please register in person or over the phone at the Worthington Library: 413- 238-5565. 147 Huntington Rd, Worthington, MA. ($$$)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-12:30pm
LITERACY/ANIMALS
Do you know a book lover who also loves dogs? How about a dog lover who struggles with reading? Young readers are invited to the Storrs Library to meet their next reading buddy, a friendly dog! Programs like this have become wildly popular because they allow children to practice reading to a furry, non-judgmental, non-threatening friend. Kids love it! Reading is a fundamental skill necessary for learning across myriad subjects and professions. A love for reading will also bring a great deal of joy to your child’s life. Please call 413 565-4182 to register your child for a ten minute reading block between 2:00 and 3:30 p.m. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-1pm
GUIDED HIKE/LOCAL HISTORY
The Keystone Arches, part of a railroad bridge over the Westfield river, are not only a beautiful structure but in fact changed the landscape and transportation far beyond Western Massachusetts. Without this bridge we would not have what is currently the longest and highest railroad in the world, the Western Pacific Railroad. To learn more about the history of the structure, meet at the Chester Train Station for a narrated hike around the Keystone Arch Trail. To register, call the Southern Hilltowns Adult Education Center at 413-685-1052 or email them at southernhilltownsaec@gmail.com. 10 Prospect Street, Chester, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-1:30pm
LITERACY/COMMUNITY SUPPORT
Access to free books through your local library is an amazingly helpful educational tool for individuals and families. Sometimes, though, it’s nice to own your own copy so you can lend your book out to friends, or write notes in the margins. At the Greenfield Public Library March Madness Book Sale you can purchase interesting books, and support the library at the same time! 4413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA (Various >$ – $$)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-4pm
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
At Holyoke’s Easter celebration children can hunt for eggs at Heritage State Park and afterwards, ride on the Merry Go Round! The egg hunt is from 10am-12pm. The Merry Go Round will be open from 10am-4pm. Dress in your nice Easter clothes or wear bunny ears and whiskers for a 1/2 price ticket! Appleton Street, Holyoke, MA. (>$)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-4pm
FAMILY MUSIC/BOOK EVENT
This years’ Meltdown: Family Book and Music Fest at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School will feature live performances from Grammy-winning musicians, book readings from award-winning authors, as well as crafts, vendors, puppets, storytellers and a petting farm. Dance with friends and family, and learn about great books. In the barn, you can meet all the animals and learn about what it’s like to be a farmer. There will also be a photo booth. All ages welcome. 80 Locust Street, Northampton, MA. (FREE admission. Vendors $-$$)

Saturday, March 26, 10am-2pm
FARMERS’ MARKET
Explore wonderful, local delights such as honey, breads, pastries, cheeses, jewelry, and more at the Amherst Winter Farmers’ Market, which runs most Saturdays through April 2, 2016. SNAP accepted throughout the market. Amherst Regional Middle School, 170 Chestnut Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 10:30am-11:30am
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
Kids nine and younger can hunt for eggs at Morningside Community School. 10:30am for 9 year olds, 10:40am for 7 & 8 year olds, 10:55am for 5 & 6 year olds, 11:10am for 4 year olds, 11:25am for 2 & 3 year olds. Look for the lucky golden eggs! 413-448-9690. 100 Burbank St. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 10:30am-12pm
PARENTING/NUTRITION
Children often dislike bitter tasting foods, making it difficult to convince them to eat vegetables. This can partly be explained on a biological level, since bitter foods register as more likely poisonous to humans than sweet foods. However, another reason behind picky eating in children is that they are exerting their independence. Come to the Southampton Library to learn more about picky eating and strategies for getting your children to eat their vegetables. The group will discuss how much, and in what ways, you should push your child to try new foods. Participants will also talk about portion control. Call 413-527-9480 to register. 30 East Street, Southampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
Come to the Hubbard Library for an all ages egg hunt. This is a highly inclusive event with designated areas for different age groups. Everyone will find eggs and children with food allergies can swap out their finds for non-candy prizes. Bring your own basket or bag. In case of rain, the event will be re-scheduled to April 2nd. Please call 413-583-3408 x3 with any questions. Ludlow, MA (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am
CREATIVE-FREE PLAY/ARTS & CRAFTS
Have you or your child ever crafted with perler beads? They are small, tube shaped beads that you place into formations. Then you apply heat to make them meld together. This type of bead allows for a great deal of creative, out-of-the-box thinking as kids get to make choices about color and shape. For this Hatfield Public Library workshop, participants will be able to make either simple or complex jewelry, or character art. Children ages 4 through teen are welcome. Younger children will need assistance. Please call 413-247-9097 to register. 39 Main St, Hatfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am
NUTRITION
It can be difficult to navigate the world of processed foods while trying to maintain a healthy diet. Sugar, for example, can hide under dozens of different names on food labels. In celebration of National Nutrition Month, the Whately Library is holding a discussion group and healthy food tasting. Swap healthy recipes and strategies for avoiding over-processed foods and unhealthy ingredients. 413-665-2170. 202 Chestnut Plain Road. Whately, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am
COMMUNITY EASTER CELEBRATION
Bring your baskets and cameras for the Easter egg hunt and pictures with the Easter Bunny at Lilac Park. If it is raining/snowing, the Easter Egg Hunt will be held at the Lenox Community Center. Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am
COMMUNITY EASTER CELEBRATION
Make sure to wear your craziest, most festive Easter hat for the hat parade at Buttery Brook Park. Prizes will be awarded to wearers of the best hats! The Easter egg hunt will begin at 11:30. 413-538-5039. 123 Willimansett Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11am-1pm
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT/CANDY FREE
Your child can enjoy an egg hunt without all the sugar, at Blue Rider Stables. There will be refreshments, a hay bale maze, pony rides, and face painting for a fee. Any money you spend will support horse care and the scholarship fund. 413 528-5299. 15 Farm Lane, South Egremont, MA. (>$ – $$)

Saturday, March 26, 11am-1pm
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT/ANIMAL STUDIES
It’s the perfect time for your family to visit The Zoo in Forest Park. Meet animals, learn about wildlife and today only, participate in an egg hunt! Meeting the animals at this zoo helps kids get interested in protecting animals and their habitats. You can use this resource and Spring celebration event to learn about bunnies. 413-733-2251. 293 Sumner Ave. Springfield, MA ($)

Saturday, March 26, 11:30am
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
There will be an Easter egg hunt at Whitney Park. Please call the Parks and Recreation Department to register. 413-583-8856. Ludlow, Ma. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 11:30pm-1:30pm
CREATIVE-FREE PLAY/UPCYCLING
Come to the Meekins Library for a loosely structured play activity. Children and their caregivers will be making boats out of juice boxes! First, drink the juice in the box, then remove the straw so the box will float. Kids can try to race their boats across the water. Bring the boat home to play with it in the tub. Teach your young children about reusing and repurposing objects and not being wasteful. Ages four and up. 2 Williams St, Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 1pm-2pm
COMMUNITY EGG HUNT
Children ten and under are invited to Look Park to hunt for over 10,000 eggs! This egg hunt has staggered start times for different age groups: 1:00pm ages 2 & under, 1:15pm ages 3 & 4, 1:30pm ages 5 & 6, 1:45pm ages 7 & 8 and 2:00pm ages 9 & 10. The 2 and younger age group will receive a snack after their egg hunt, rather than candy. In each group there will be two eggs with special prizes and lots with toys. Please arrive early and bring your own basket or bag. Florence, MA. (FREE. $ to park.)

Saturday, March 26, 2pm
BOOK DISCUSSION: AGING
Dr. Atul Gawande’s critically acclaimed, best-selling book, Being Mortal, is an insightful book for anyone, but it is particularly helpful for people dealing with the passing of a loved one. This book discussion at the Sunderland Public Library will be moderated by medical professionals from Cooley Dickinson Hospital. Come with questions. These medical professionals will be using Being Mortal and this discussion to form goals for the end-of-life care they provide at the hospital. Your participation and advice could have a significant impact on the hospital experience of countless families in the future. 20 School Street, Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, March 26, 3pm-4pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/CLOTHING SWAP
Have you ever thrown a clothing swap with your friends? It feels great to give your clothes away, get new clothes in return, and minimize your wardrobe so that your closet isn’t full of items you never wear. You can participate in a community-wide clothing swap at The Haberdashery by providing no more than 15 items of Spring or Summer clothing or accessories. Drop your items off sometime before the event, during the Haberdashery’s hours of operation (Tues, Mar 22 through Fri, Mar 25, 10am – 5pm, or Sat Mar 26, 10am-1pm). Add some community connection to your Spring cleaning, and check out this local resource for Do It Yourself. products and classes. More details can be found on the Haberdashery Facebook Page. Register online. 413-527-1638. 52 Union Street, Easthampton, MA. (>$)

Saturday, March 26, 7pm
MUSIC STUDIES/MULTI GENRE
The Franklin County Musicians Cooperative is a not for profit organization bringing together solo and group musicians of folk, rock, country, Celtic, jazz and swing. These established and emerging artists bring communities together in Franklin County and beyond, through their original compositions, and covers of classic songs. Come to the Great Falls Discovery Center to hear several musical genres and groups perform live. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A, Turners Falls, MA. (DONATION)

Saturday, March 26, 7pm
FILM SCREENING/HISTORY
Acts of space exploration, including exploration of the moon, are among some of the greatest human accomplishments. But what does landing on the moon feel like? What kind of effect does the job of astronaut have on a person, and on that person’s family? The 2014 documentary, The Last Man on the Moon (not rated) tells the story of Apollo astronaut Eugene Cernan from a deeply personal perspective. Going to outer space, especially in the early years of space exploration, is dangerous. You and your family cannot be certain you will return. Come to The Little Cinema inside The Berkshire Museum to witness this personal and historical account. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (>$)

Saturday, March 26, 8pm
THEATER STUDIES/EXPERIMENTAL/COLLEGE THEATER
Pitcher Robin Fulton is down in the minor leagues, leading the Chattanooga Lookouts to victory in spite of the unpredictable actions of his teammates and their low-down manager. As he struggles to find his place on the team, adversity threatens his pursuit of a dream and his love of the game. Send Him Home, written by Daphne Thompson ’16, is a dramatic comedy which draws inspiration from real-life diaries chronicling a 15-year professional baseball career. This Amherst College performance gives audiences an opportunity to see the developing talents of young students and graduates as they showcase their work in all aspects of theater art, including acting, playwriting, and design. The performance will be held at the Holden Experimental Theater in Webster Hall at Amherst College. Reservations are recommended. 413-542-2277. 220 South Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Ongoing Sunday Events

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 over 8 years of archived shows.

Sunday, March 27, various times
EXHIBIT: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY
International Women’s Day has a rich history since its inception in 1909. It began as a socialist event, celebrating working women. It has since broadened its scope to include all women, with new themes every year. Past themes have included “women in decision-making,” “women and HIV/AIDS,” and “equality for women is progress for all.” You can explore the history of this celebratory day through an exhibit of historic International Women’s Day posters. These posters will be on display at the Holyoke Public Library (Monday-Thursday 8:30am-8:30pm; Friday and Saturday 8:30am-4pm; 250 Chestnut Street) and the Holyoke Heritage State Park visitor center (Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 4pm; 221 Appleton Street) until March 29. 413 534 1723. Holyoke MA. (FREE)

Sunday, March 27, 10am-4pm
EASTER BUNNY PHOTOS
Want a photo with the Easter Bunny? Bring your children to the Holyoke Merry Go Round to meet the Easter Bunny and go for a ride. Bring a camera to capture a happy day. Dress in your nice Easter clothes or wear bunny ears and whiskers for a 1/2 price ticket! 221 Appleton Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)

Sunday, March 27, 3pm
POETRY READING/LITERATURE IN TRANSLATION
Jubilat is a literary magazine which has been publishing poetry and artwork since the Spring of 2000. In 2001, Jubilat began conducting annual readings in partnership with the Jones Library. Come be a part of a local tradition supporting writers, and hear readings from two distinct voices. Michelle Gil-Montero and Sawako Nakayasu are both translators as well as poets. Gil-Montero translates contemporary Latin American literature. Nakayasu’s poems are influenced by her extensive travels, having been born in Japan, raised in the United States, and also lived in France and China. Travel the world through poetry at this free reading. Goodwin Room. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity St, Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, March 27, 7pm
FILM SCREENING/HISTORY
Acts of space exploration, including exploration of the moon, are among some of the greatest human accomplishments. But what does landing on the moon feel like? What kind of effect does the job of astronaut have on a person, and on that person’s family? The 2014 documentary, The Last Man on the Moon (not rated) tells the story of Apollo astronaut Eugene Cernan from a deeply personal perspective. Going to outer space, especially in the early years of space exploration, is dangerous. You and your family cannot be certain you will return. Come to The Little Cinema inside The Berkshire Museum to witness this personal and historical account. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (>$)

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Monday, March 28, 2016

Monday, March 28, various times
EXHIBIT: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY
International Women’s Day has a rich history since its inception in 1909. It began as a socialist event, celebrating working women. It has since broadened its scope to include all women, with new themes every year. Past themes have included “women in decision-making,” “women and HIV/AIDS,” and “equality for women is progress for all.” You can explore the history of this celebratory day through an exhibit of historic International Women’s Day posters. These posters will be on display at the Holyoke Public Library (Monday-Thursday 8:30am-8:30pm; Friday and Saturday 8:30am-4pm; 250 Chestnut Street) and the Holyoke Heritage State Parkvisitor center (Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 4pm; 221 Appleton Street) until March 29. 413 534 1723. Holyoke MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 1:30pm and 7pm
FILM SCREENING/HISTORY
Acts of space exploration, including exploration of the moon, are among some of the greatest human accomplishments. But what does landing on the moon feel like? What kind of effect does the job of astronaut have on a person, and on that person’s family? The 2014 documentary, The Last Man on the Moon (not rated) tells the story of Apollo astronaut Eugene Cernan from a deeply personal perspective. Going to outer space, especially in the early years of space exploration, is dangerous You and your family cannot be certain you will return. Come to The Little Cinema inside The Berkshire Museum to witness this personal and historical account. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (>$)

Monday, March 28, 4pm-6pm
GENEALOGY
Come to the final meeting of the genealogy workshop at Holyoke Public Library. Today will be an open session for participants to continue the work they have started. But if you missed the first three sessions, don’t fret! Research expert Dave Robinson (creator of Old Bones Genealogy of New England will help you get started with the basics. Please bring your library card. 413-420-8101. 250 Chestnut St. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 5:30pm-7pm
EARLY LITERACY
There are tons of ways to get your young children comfortable with reading and ultimately help them grow to love books. Creating safe, encouraging spaces where they can learn to read and providing them with books to choose from are two good steps. This four part (March 14, 21, 28, April 4) parent-child reading workshop at Pelham Elementary School will provide you with many more tips and activities, as well as a book to take home each week! Please bring your child with you for this night of talking, playing, singing and sharing books. This workshop is for parents of children from birth to age five. This Collaborative For Educational Services program is part of a larger series, “The Puzzle of Parenting.” Look for similar events in the future. 413-586-4900-Option 3. 45 Amherst Rd. Pelham, MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 6pm
LANGUAGE ARTS/POETRY
This film screening, reading, and discussion is the perfect transition into April, which is National Poetry Month. Come to the Dalton Public Library and honor the work of William Jay Smith, America’s 19th Poet Laureate. The library will present a mixed media program in which you will hear five of his poems. This project was a collaboration between Smith, composer Alice Spatz and filmmaker Eric Shepherd. Shepard and Spatz will tell the story behind this project. This performance may get participants thinking about writing poetry themselves or beginning an artistic collaboration with others. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 6pm
PLANT STUDIES/MEDICINE
How do plants defend themselves against herbivores? Since plants cannot run or hide (although sensitive plants such as mimosa pudica can move slightly) they typically protect themselves with chemicals. Not all chemicals produced by plants are dangerous to humans, however, and plants have a multitude of medicinal uses. Come to the Sci Tech Cafe’s presentation, “Engineering Plant Defenses to Fight Cancer,” to learn more about plants that produce human health agents. Professor Susan Roberts, head of the chemical engineering department at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, will discuss how scientists can exploit plants to supply anticancer agents. All ages welcome. Union Station. 125 Pleasant St, Northampton, MA. (DONATION)

Monday, March 28, 6pm-7:30pm
ORAL HISTORY/WORKSHOP
Do you have a favorite family story? Personal oral histories can shed light on where we came from and what life was like for the generations who came before us. Oral history projects can take important stories and capture them in recorded form, possibly combining many voices from a particular time or place. At this oral history workshop, Assistant Professor Sam Redman will teach you the basic principles of conducting an oral history interview and managing an oral history project. If you want to find out more beforehand, check out the Oral History Association website for information on best practices, as well as examples of projects for inspiration. Reserve your workshop spot online at the Wistariahurst Museum website. 238 Cabot Street. Holyoke, MA. (>$)

Monday, March 28, 6pm-8pm
WOMEN’S HISTORY/MUSIC
Politically driven art has the power to set real change in motion. Books, movies, and songs have historically had the power to draw attention to political issues, often by lending a personal perspective on a far-reaching societal problem. In this presentation, Lawrence Watson of Berklee College of Music will highlight stories of women musicians who have made history. This talk is entitled: “Still on the Journey: A Celebration of women in the civil and human rights struggle from Mary to Ida to Beyonce.” Come to the Owl’s Nest at Westfield State University to reflect on the political changes women have fought for, and the fighting that is still going on. 577 Western Ave, Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 6:30pm
MUSIC STUDIES/UKULELE
The ukulele is one of the simplest instruments to play, with only three chords needed to play most songs. Join Julie Stepanek for a Ukulele Strum at the M.N. Spear Memorial Library. Bring your uke, or other instrument, or just come to sing along. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road, Shutesbury, MA. (FREE)

Monday, March 28, 7pm
MUSIC STUDIES/CLASSICAL AND CONTEMPORARY
Wu Man, of the group Wu Man and the Shanghai Quartet, plays both contemporary and classical music of Eastern and Western traditions. Anyone interested in music is invited to attend this screening and talk in which Wu Man will discuss her film: Discovering a Musical Heartland: Wu Man in China. The screening will take place in the UMass Amherst Fine Arts Center lobby. Tuesday, March 29 at 7:30pm the Quartet will perform in the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall. 151 Presidents Drive, Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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ONGOING FOR MONDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9:30am-10:30am — PLAYGROUP : Weekly playgroup at Crosby Elementary School sponsored by Pittsfield CFCE. 413-441-0974. 517 West Street, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11am – STORYTIME & MUSIC: Families with young children are invited to the Spear Memorial Library every Monday for a “Tales & Tunes” program with Katie Tolles, sponsored by the Community Network for Children. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road, Shutesbury, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP/MUSIC: Parent-child playgroup at the Pelham Library offers a story, snack, music, and fingerplays. “Music for Little Ones,” with Wendy Plummer, follows at 10:30am. Ages birth-5 years. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road, Pelham, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Children ages 3-5 and their caregivers can join the Play N Learn playgroup each Monday morning, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. Advance registration required. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – KNITTING: The Sunderland Public Library has a knitting group that runs every Monday. The group is open to knitters of all levels and ages. Great intergenerational activity to do with young homeschoolers. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – LITERACY: Young children can have fun with books and reading at Wee Read at the Worthington Library every Monday. 413-238-5565. 1 Huntington Road. Worthington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for ages walking to 5 years every Monday at the Williamstown Youth Center. 413-458-5925. 66 School Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12pm – PLAYGROUP: Young children and their caregivers are invited to Gym Fun, a playgroup that incorporates lots of movement. This group meets on Mondays and is sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. Town Hall, 21 State Line Rd., West Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Forbes Library for a fun storytime every Monday. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Storrs Library offers a drop-in playgroup for kids ages 3 and under every Monday morning, ongoing. Come hear a story, sing songs, and enjoy free play. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am —KNITTING INSTRUCTION/SKILLSHARE
    Don’t know how to knit? Learn! Already know how to knit? Teach! Every second Tuesday of the month, you can trade knitting techniques at theWhately Library. This is a relaxing and engaging activity that allows you to be creative and end up with a useful product. 413-665-2170. 202 Chestnut Plain Rd. Whately, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12noon — PARENTING SUPPORT: Get out of the house and socialize with other moms and dads at the Baby and Me Group at Family Center of Northern Berkshire County every second Monday of the month. Share experiences, thoughts, and ideas. Each child receives a new board book on the first visit. For parents with children from infant to walking. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street, North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:30pm – PLAYGROUP: Young kids can come to tummy time at the Forbes Library every Monday. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – 4pm – STEM: The Berkshire Museum’s Spark!Lab is open for drop in play. In Spark!Lab, everyone is an inventor! Spark!Lab is a hands-on, creative laboratory that engages children and families in the process of innovation: try the variety of activities, from creating a wheeled vehicle to experimenting with percussion to assembling safe electrical circuits. Visitors of all ages can work together to combine skills and ideas to create inventions with real-world applications. 413-443-7171. Berkshire Museum, 39 South St., Pittsfield, MA. (FREE with museum admission)
  • 1pm-2:30pm – KINSHIP SUPPORT: Are you helping raise your grandchildren, nieces & nephews, or other family members? Join others who are doing so at a parenting support group every third Monday of the month at the Williamsburg Senior Center. Childcare available if you call in advance. 413-563-1981. 141 Main Street, Haydenville, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-4pm — CREATIVE FREE PLAY/TEENS:
    Hang out with your friends and color some cool designs at Mandala Mondays at the Lee Library. Coloring lets you put your worries aside and focus on creating something beautiful. 413-243-0385. 100 Main Street, Lee, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5pm – ART: Do you know a teen who loves to draw? The Hubbard Library offers “Sketchy Ato,” a drop-in session in which all genres are welcome – manga, comics, western, or anything else. Artists can share their work (if they want) with fellow art maniacs! For middle & high schoolers. Every two weeks. 413-583-3408. 24 Center St., Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:15pm-4:15pm — CHESS: Drop in to Storrs Library to learn and play chess every Monday. Taught and led by Longmeadow High School students. All ages; beginners welcome. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm — STORYTIME/SINGING/PUPPETRY: Kids of all ages are invited to the Greenfield Public Library every Monday for Afterschool Read-Aloud. Enjoy picture books, folk tales, or passages from favorite chapter books, along with sing-along songs and puppetry. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street, Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5:30pm — PARENTING SUPPORT: Grandparents Raising Grandchildren group meets Monday evenings at The Bridge Family Resource Center. Meet with others in a safe place to talk and be heard. Dinner served. No registration required. Childcare provided. 413-549-0297. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 4:30pm-6pm — POETRY/TEENS: Bring your stories, share your truth, and discover your voice in a weekly Teen Poetry Workshop facilitated by local writer and artist Jorrell Watkins at The Bridge Family Resource Center. For ages 13-18. No registration required. 413-549-0297. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm-6pm — COMMUNITY MEAL: The Berkshire South Regional Community Center hosts a community supper prepared by some of the best chefs in the Berkshires every Monday. Join your neighbors and make new friends. Donations accepted and contributions of non-perishable food items for local food banks encouraged. No reservations required. 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30-6:30pm – GYM GROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a Gym Group at the Haskins Center for ages walking to 8 years old. 413-664-4821. 210 State St., North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm — WOMEN’S STUDIES/BOOK CLUB: Book club focusing on media literacy and gender-based violence meets the last Monday of every month at the Sunderland Public Library to discuss how popular media, such as books, portray sexual/domestic violence and how those portrayals impact our culture. Best suited for mature teens and adults. Learn more here. Pre-registration requested. 413-665 2642. Lane Reading Room, 20 School Street, Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – KNITTING: All skill levels can attend a knitting group at the Westhampton Public Library every Monday evening. Come learn and share tips and tricks with knitters of all ages and levels. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-7pm – STORYTIME: Kids can unwind at the end of the day at the Montague Center Library‘s ongoing weekly evening storytime. Kids are welcome to come to the storytime in their pajamas. 413-367-2852. 17 Center Street. Montague, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-8pm — BOOK CLUB: The Emily Williston Memorial Library invites you to Monday Night Book Club, which meets the fourth Monday of each month (except in May). For adults and/or young adults who are mature readers. 413-527-1031. Emily Williston Memorial Library, 9 Park St., Easthampton, MA (FREE)
  • 6:45pm-7:45pm — PERFORMING: Come offer your creative ideas and talents to support your library at Storrs Library‘s Spirit Squad, meeting every Monday through 5/16. Help plan and perform a dance or skit for the Volunteer Appreciation Dinner on 4/14, and promote the library at Long Meddowe Days in May. For students in grades 6 and up. 413-565-4182. 693 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm – POETRY: Forbes Library holds a poetry discussion group every Monday in the Coolidge Museum. Come discuss the works of famous poets with community members of all backgrounds – lifelong poets and those who are new to reading poetry. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm – COMMUNITY SING: Join friends and neighbors at the Westhampton Public Library for a monthly get together of people who love to play music and sing! Bring your instrument(s) and copies of songs you would like to share with the group. Meets the first Monday of the month. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road, Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm-9pm — SKETCHING: A Figure Drawing Collective meets every Monday night at Makers’ Mill. 413-749-2073. 73 Main Street, North Adams, MA.(<$)

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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Tuesday, March 29, various times
EXHIBIT: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY
International Women’s Day has a rich history since its inception in 1909. It began as a socialist event, celebrating working women. It has since broadened its scope to include all women, with new themes every year. Past themes have included “women in decision-making,” “women and HIV/AIDS,” and “equality for women is progress for all.” You can explore the history of this celebratory day through an exhibit of historic International Women’s Day posters. These posters will be on display at the Holyoke Public Library (Monday-Thursday 8:30am-8:30pm; Friday and Saturday 8:30am-4pm; 250 Chestnut Street) and the Holyoke Heritage State Parkvisitor center (Tuesday-Sunday, noon to 4pm; 221 Appleton Street) until March 29. 413 534 1723. Holyoke MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 6pm-7:30pm
PARENTING SUPPORT/EMOTIONAL HEALTH
Managing emotions and communicating effectively are lifelong skills we use every day. All young children struggle with regulating their emotions. Children feel frustrated with their lack of freedom and their limited (yet constantly growing!) abilities. In this workshop series, Certified Holistic Health Counselor Sarah Patton will provide strategies to help parents help their children emotionally. This is the second of six workshops taking place at Erving Elementary School in March and April: on March, 15, 22, 29, April, 5,12,26. This class promises to instill greater competence and confidence in your children and help them follow directions more effectively. These are complex issues and there is no magic solution. Unlike one-time parenting events, over the course of this workshop you can test new strategies, provide feedback, and ask questions over the course of several weeks. 28 Northfield Rd. Erving, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 6:30pm
NATURE-BASED RESOURCES
While the Pioneer Valley is full of well-known spots for nature exploration, many beautiful natural sites are not heavily advertised and are mostly found by word of mouth or stumbling upon them by chance. Gather with other nature enthusiasts at the Dickinson Memorial Library as they share with you the hidden gems they have found in the Pioneer Valley and across New England. Afterwards, you will have many new sites to explore for hiking, swimming, picnicking and just relaxing outdoors. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street, Northfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 6:30pm
EDUCATION/FILM
Montessori School of Northampton and Amherst Montessori School present the film Most Likely to Succeed, the documentary that has been inspiring conversation about a model of education that prepares students for the 21st century. Seating is limited. Screening takes place at Amherst College‘s Pruyne Auditorium, Fayerweather Hall. Open to the public. Tickets can be reserved at info@northamptonmontessori.org. Amherst, MA (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 7pm-8:30pm
SIGN LANGUAGE/DEAF CULTURE/POETRY
American Sign Language was created by Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, a minister, in the early 1800s. Prior to ASL there were other forms of visual communication utilized by deaf individuals in America. Learning a language is crucial to understanding the culture of people who speak it. American Sign Language is no exception. To learn about the vibrant culture of deaf Americans, come to Bay Path University for this screening of Deaf Jam, a 2011 documentary (not rated) about a deaf teenager’s decision to perform slam poetry entirely in ASL. This is an inspiring story of friendship, community, self-expression and art. Mills theater, Carr hall. 588 Longmeadow St, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 7:30pm
POETRY READING
National Poetry Month is right around the corner, and it’s not too early to celebrate! Come to Smith College for a reading from Kirby Jambon. Jambon’s writing is influenced by his Louisiana upbringing and his Cajun heritage. He is a recipient of the Henri de Régnier prize in Paris and has worked as a teacher, activist, actor, and storyteller. How has your upbringing influenced your hobbies and work? This reading will take place in the Poetry Center in Wright Hall. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 7:30pm
DOCUMENTARY THEATER
“Verbatim theater” is a type of documentary performance which draws upon exact quotes as dialogue for the stage. Graduating Smith College senior Hannah Sachs utilized this form in the creation of her new play, “Krása.” The script for this play is composed entirely of direct quotes gleaned from 11 in-depth interviews conducted in the Czech Republic. Among those interviewed are religious leaders, artists, Communists, and academics. Come to Smith College to witness the culmination of this student’s work, view an innovative form of theater in action, and learn about the history and culture of the Czech republic. Theatre 100, Mendenhall CPA. Green Street, Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, March 29, 7:30pm
MUSIC STUDIES/CLASSICAL/CONTEMPORARY
Explore the musical traditions and contemporary trends of the East and the West in this performance by Wu Man and the Shanghai Quartet. You will hear Mozart’s K. 499, compositions by contemporary Chinese composers, and traditional Chinese folk songs. Travel through time and place at this concert at the UMass Amherst Fine Arts Center Concert Hall. Attendees are invited to stay for a post-performance discussion. 151 Presidents Drive, Amherst, MA. ($$. Five College Students, GCC Students and Youth 17 & under >$)

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ONGOING FOR TUESDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 8:45am-10:15am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children hosts a playgroup for newborns through preschool-aged children with their caregivers at the Swift River School every Tuesday through June 30, 2016. It may not run on school holidays and in inclement weather; please call ahead to check. 978-544-5157. 201 Wendell Road, New Salem, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-10am — PLAYGROUP : Weekly playgroup at Egremont Elementary School sponsored by Pittsfield CFCE. 413-441-0974. 84 Egremont Avenue, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Every Tuesday, Community Health Programs of Berkshire County hosts Toddler Steps, a playgroup for children ages 18 months- 3 years with their caregivers. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for young kids ages birth-preK at the Dickinson Memorial Library with Deb Wood features fun toys and more! Every Tuesday. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Frontier Regional CFCE is offering a playgroup for kids ages 5 and under every Tuesday and Friday at Sunderland Elementary School through June 10, 2016. Follows Sunderland school schedule. 413-665-8928. 1 Swampfield Drive. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – SCHOOL READINESS: There will be a school readiness program every Tuesday at the Hilltown Family Center. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Young children and their caregivers are invited to participate in the Explore & Play playgroup, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County, which meets Tuesday mornings. 413-644-0104. 1 North Main Road, Otis, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12pm — PLAYGROUP: Children ages 0-5 and their parents are invited to a playgroup at the Belchertown Family Center every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning. 413-835-5201. 720 Franklin Street, Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PARENT GROUP: Nursing Families group every Tuesday at the Haskins Center. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STEAM: Preschool-age children can learn about science, technology, engineering, art, and math at the Dalton Free Public Library every Tuesday! There will be a story, a lesson, and a STEAM project. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Join the Greenfield Public Library for a weekly storytime year-round! This event includes stories, songs, fingerplays, and crafts for kids age five and under. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30pm – PLAYGROUP: The Westhampton Public Library will have a baby and toddler play time every Tuesday at 11am. They also offer a playgroup for children ages 0-5 and their caregivers on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month which begins at 10am. Kids can come play with toys, do a craft, read a book, and make new friends at this fun playgroup, year-round. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – LITERACY: Kids ages 2-5 can attend a literacy group at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Westfield. Come with a parent or caregiver and practice reading skills! Runs every Tuesday. 413-568-5242. 28 West Silver Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: It Takes a Village Mother’s Circle runs every Tuesday at St. John’s Corner House. Come talk about motherhood with others in a supportive and caring environment. Expectant mothers welcome, and infants can attend, and there is childcare for older children. Follows the Mohawk Trail school schedule. 413-650-3640. 469 Main Street. Ashfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-5pm – WOODWORKING:The Shakers are known for their beautiful and simple handcrafted utilitarian objects. Visit the Hancock Shaker Village any Tuesday to watch master woodworkers create oval boxes using traditional tools and techniques. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE for members and children 12 and under; $)
  • 10:15am-11:45am – CRAFTING: What better way to prepare for a cozy New England winter than to complete those knitting projects? Knitting alongside others also builds community and increases skills. The Storrs Library in Longmeadow offers a Novel Knitters drop-in program for adults where you can bring your own projects and supplies or participate in ongoing community projects. All levels of expertise are welcome. 413- 565-4182. Storrs Library, 693 Longmeadow St., Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30 – STORYTIME/SINGING: children ages 6 through 18 months are invited to the Berkshire Museum every Tuesday for storytime, singing, language learning and play. Caregivers are encouraged to use this time to socialize and discuss parenting experiences. There will be physical activities for the children as well. Cost is included with regular museum admission. 413-443-7171 x21. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. ($ Adults. >$ Children)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Preschoolers can attend a fun storytime at the Chicopee Public Library the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. Come for songs, finger plays, movement, stories, activities, and crafts. 413-594-1800 x107. 449 Front Street. Chicopee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime and music for ages 1-3 every Tuesday at the North Adams Public Library. 413-662-3133. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am — STORYTIME: Books and Babies, for children from birth to age 2, meets at the East Longmeadow Public Library every Monday. 413-525-5400, ext. 1511. 60 Center Square, East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Preschool storytime every Tuesday at the Granby Free Public Library. Nurture your child’s love of books by engaging in stories and crafts. Ages 2 ½ to 5 years old. Drop in! 413-467-3320. 297 East State Street, Granby, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11am – MUSIC: The Hubbard Library is offering a music program for preschoolers every Tuesday. Come for singing, clapping, and dancing. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STEM & LITERACY PLAYGROUP: The Mason Library invites children ages 0-5 with their caregivers to its Brain Builders Play & Learn Playgroup every Tuesday. Activities will include reading, singing, playing, circle time, and engaging table-time activities that focus on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) themes! 413-528-1720. 231 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am — MUSIC: Wendy Plummer leads “Sing with Your Baby” at the Jones Library every Tuesday. Babies, toddlers, and their caregivers can sing along and play with musical instruments. 413-259-3090. Woodbury Room, 43 Amity Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am – PLAYGROUP: Childcare of the Berkshires, Inc. holds a playgroup every Tuesday at the Adams Youth Center. 413-664-4821. 20 East Street Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: The Westhampton Public Library is holding a baby and toddler playtime every Tuesday. Come to the library and meet other kids and parents. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:00am – 12:00pm – PLAYGROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a playgroup at Adams Youth Center for infants to 5 year olds. 413-664-4821. 20 East St., Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:00am – 12:00pm – SUPPORT GROUP Grandparents of all backgrounds and parenting styles are invited to the Amherst Family Center to discuss their experiences related to raising grandchildren, or supporting their own children in their parenting. Childcare provided up to age 4. This group will not meet when public schools are closed or delayed. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12pm – PLAYGROUP: Facilitator MaryBeth leads Baby Steps, a playgroup that meets Tuesdays. This playgroup is sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-1pm – KINSHIP SUPPORT GROUP: Grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and other relatives who are raising their young relatives can attend a support group every second and fourth Tuesday in Turners Falls. Come to the group to learn about resources, meet others, share experiences, and seek support. Run by United Arc. 413-563-1981. 294 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)
  • 12:30pm-2pm – TECHNOLOGY SUPPORT: The Storrs Library’s Tech Tuesday ongoing, drop-in sessions allow folks to receive coaching in various skills with which they’ve been needing support. Learn how to use your new computer, send email, operate an e-reader, and more. Bring your phone, e-reader, or other relevant device. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-2pm – BREASTFEEDING SUPPORT: Are you or your partner facing breastfeeding challenges? Is nursing not what you thought it would be? Stop in to MaryBeth’s breastfeeding support group, which meets Tuesday afternoons, for advice, techniques, and emotional support. Babies and children welcome, of course! This group is sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-3pm — KNITTING: Bring your needles and yarn to the Knitting Club at Lilly Library every Tuesday. All levels of experience welcome and lessons available. 413-587-1500. 19 Meadow Street, Florence, MA. (FREE)
  • 2pm – FILM: Amherst Cinema offers weekly matinees every Tuesday, 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-2:45pm — STORYTIME/MUSIC/CRAFTS:
    Afternoon Preschool Storytime at the Jones Library is open to all kids from birth to age 5 but especially designed for kids who attend morning programs or school sessions. Listen to stories, sing songs, learn rhymes, and do a simple craft every Tuesday. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm – KNITTING: On the second and fourth Tuesday of each month, the Stockbridge Library hosts a Sit & Knit group. All levels of knitters and crocheters can come spend time knitting with others. 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-4pm — LEGO CLUB Come build remote control devices and other cool stuff with LEGOs at the Bushnell-Sage Library. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street, Sheffield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5pm – GAMES: Kids can play Magic the Gathering every Tuesday at Comics N’ More. A great chance for kids to make new friends with similar interests and learn how to play this fun card game! 413-529-0800. 31 Union Street. Easthampton, MA.
  • 3pm-5pm — TEENS: Afterschool Cafe every Tuesday at the Goodwin Memorial Library. Teens can be teens in their own space — a great place to work on homework, read, play games, hang with friends and chill out. Refreshments provided. 413-584-7451. 50 Middle Street (Corner of Routes 47 and 9), Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm — LEGOS: Kids ages 6-8 can make their “LEGO Creations” every Tuesday at the West Springfield Public Library
    413-736-4561. 511 Main Street, West Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-4:30pm – LEGOS: The Family Resource Center is offering a LEGO group for ages 4-8 the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. 413-664-4821. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:45pm-4:45pm — BOOK CLUB: Kids in grades 4-6 are invited to join the MCBA Book Club that meets the second and fourth Tuesday of the month through March at Mason Library. Participants will discuss the nominee books for the 2015-16 Massachusetts Children’s Book Award and do related fun activities. Students may take the bus directly to the library after school. 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA, (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm — READING: Toby the reading dog loves to listen to stories. Come read to him every Tuesday in the Children’s Room at the Lee Library. 413-243-0385. 100 Main Street, Lee, MA. (FREE)
  • 4:30pm – AFTERSCHOOL & YO-YO: Not many toys can boast over 2,500 years of use worldwide, but the yo-yo has enjoyed consistent use in hundreds of cultures for nearly three millennia. The popular Northampton education-based store A to Z hosts Yo-Yo School three times a week inside their store, and their teachers are true masters. Open to all ages, although older elementary children often have the motor skills and coordination needed for it to be a bit easier to learn. Read more about Yo-Yo school on Hilltown Families. Call 413-586-1611. 57 King St., Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:15pm-6:45pm – KINSHIP SUPPORT GROUP: Grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and others who are raising young relatives can attend a support group every first Tuesday Come to the group to learn about resources, meet others, share experiences, and seek support. Run by United Arc. 413-563-1981. 90 Federal Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-8pm – FILM STUDIES: The Red Gate Farm Film Club meets on the third Tuesday of every month to watch and discuss films in the farm’s program building. A homemade dinner is served, with an optional small donation to cover food costs. All ages welcome, but parents should know that PG and PG-13 movies are shown. Anyone in 3rd grade or younger must be accompanied by a parent or guardian, and participants under 17 must have a signed parental/guardian consent form in order to attend. 413-625-9503. 4 Norman Road, Buckland, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm – LITERACY/GAMES: Meet up with other community members at the Monson Library each Tuesday for a game of Scrabble! 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm – PARENTING & CLIMATE CHANGE: Mothers Out Front is a group of “mothers and others” who are concerned about climate change and passionate about creating a cleaner energy future for future generations. Learn more about the group’s work and meet other parents with whom to share your stories, hopes, and fears at their monthly climate support gatherings, held every 2nd Tuesday and 4th Thursday of the month. RSVP via the MOF site. Sunderland, MA (Tuesdays) and Florence, MA (Thursdays). (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm – WRITING: The Sunderland Public Library hosts a Teen and Tween Writing Club the last Tuesday of each month. Students can come practice writing from prompts and doing activities and exercises – this is a great way to make friends and improve writing skills! Please sign up in advance. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE: Is the health of our Earth on your mind? Gather with others who are contemplating the same topic at the Environmental Awareness Discussion Group, which meets on the last Tuesday of the month at the Dickinson Memorial Library. Members of the group use both non-fiction and fiction books and films as launching off points for meaningful conversations about the environment. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street, Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-8pm — MUSIC STUDIES/UKULELE: Kids and adults ages 13 and up can join the Berkshire Ukulele Band (BUB) and learn to play the ukulele with multi-instrumentalist, teacher, and performer Rob Sanzone at the Berkshire South Regional Community Center. Ukulele technique, chord progressions, and songs from various musical genres will be taught. Limited number of ukuleles available for use. Beginners encouraged; reading music not required. Opportunities to perform at community events. Registration requested. Drop-ins encouraged, but call ahead, as the group sometimes performs off-site during class time. 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE for members and guests)

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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Wednesday March 30, 11am
MUSIC STUDIES/UKULELE
The ukulele is one of the simplest instruments to play, with only three chords needed to play most songs. Join Julie Stepanek for a Ukulele Strum at the Field Memorial Library. All ages are welcome, beginners and experienced players. Julie will teach everyone how to tune their ukuleles and strum a few chords. Registrations are required. You can reserve a ukulele or bring your own if you have one. 413-369-4646. 1 Elm Street Conway, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, March 30, 11am-12:30pm
GRANDPARENTS’ GROUP
Grandparents face their own challenges, separate from parenting. The purpose of this group is to provide grandparents a space to connect and share their experiences. A lunch will be provided for participants as well as children in childcare during the event. Whether you are a new grandparent or have several grandchildren, this is a great way to make new friends while becoming more familiar with the resources at the Palmer Monson Family Network. 413-283-6246. 4 Springfield Street.Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, March 30, 12:30-1:30
WELLNESS/WORKSHOP
Do you have goals for improvement of your health? You may be focused on exercise, or nutrition, mental health, or some combination of these factors. Since the mind and body are intricately connected, even one seemingly small change in lifestyle can have a far-reaching impact on your overall sense of well-being. Berkshire Health Systems will be holding a four week workshop series on healthy eating, exercise, stress reduction and more. Participants will receive a wellness screening. Each participant will identify his or her own personal goals and hear strategies for taking small steps in the direction of a healthier lifestyle. Join others interested in making these changes, at the Adams Visitor Center. 3 Hoosac Street. Adams, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, March 30, 5pm
LECTURE: SOCIAL MEDIA/TECHNOLOGY
The term “filter bubble” was coined by scholar Eli Pariser to refer to the phenomenon of personalized search results. Search results are personalized when a website’s algorithm prioritizes the results the user is most likely to want, based on previous web activity. The filter bubble effects Google, Facebook and other sites. On the one hand, this makes searching more convenient. On the other hand, it may make it less likely for people to see information they don’t agree with, therefore making it less likely that people will find their beliefs being challenges. Social media scholar Dahna Boyd will be discussing the intersection of society and technology in her lecture, “Living in a Culture of Algorithms.” Come to this Smith College lecture to learn more about how website algorithms influence the information you see, and don’t see. Boyd is the author of It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens. Weinstein Auditorium, Wright Hall. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, March 30, 5:30-7:30pm
STEM/CODING/SKILLSHARE
Come to a Holyoke Codes lab night and work on any project you want while meeting people and getting inspired by their projects. You’re welcome to play with a LEGO Mindstorms EV3 or WeDo robotics kit, work in Scratch, get help learning HTML, Javascript, or another programming language, learn how to create your own Minecraft mods, or write mobile apps for Android with App Inventor. The possibilities are nearly endless. Many of the Holyoke coders have been working with Raspberry Pi and are interested in getting started with gemma wearable computing projects. All ages and abilities welcome. Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center 100 Bigelow St. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, March 30, 7:30-9pm
NEUROSCIENCE/SUBSTANCE USE
Jodi Gilman, neuroscientist and Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School will be discussing the long and short term effects of marijuana use in this talk, “Marijuana: What We Know and Don’t Know.” Come to Mount Holyoke College’s Hooker Auditorium to learn more about this topic from an expert in neuroscience. Open to the public. 50 College St, South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

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ONGOING FOR WEDNESDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 8am-10am – COMMUNITY BREAKFAST: Whether you are seeking a nutritious meal to start your day, hoping to make new connections in the community–or both!–everyone is welcome to attend a community breakfast each Wednesday, hosted by Craig’s Doors, in partnership with the Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst. 413-437-0776. Willie Eaton Social Hall, Unitarian Meetinghouse, 121 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 9am-12pm – TRACKING CLUB The Berkshire Environmental Action Team invites you to join their monthly tracking club, running from March to August every first Wednesday and third Saturday of the month. You will learn tracking skills and general naturalist skills, and use this ability to gather data on local wildlife. Check the website BEAT for details and locations. 413-429-6416. Various locations. ($)
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Young kids can play, learn, and discover at a weekly program every Wednesday at Kittredge Elementary School. 413-655-0146. Maple Street. Hinsdale, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Cummington Family Center is holding a playgroup every Wednesday and Friday through May 2016. Young kids can come play and make friends. Takes place in old Berkshire Trail Elementary School. 2 Main Street. Cummington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: You and your young children are welcome to join other kids and caregivers each Wednesday at the Lenox Community Center’s weekly playgroup, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. 65 Walker Street, Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Children ages 3-5 years old and their caregivers can join Kim each Wednesday for Play N Learn, a playgroup sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. Advance registration required. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12pm — PLAYGROUP: Children ages 0-5 and their parents are invited to a playgroup at the Belchertown Family Center every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning. 413-835-5201. 720 Franklin Street, Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – STORYTIME: Parents and their preschoolers can come to the Westhampton Public Library for coffee and storytime every Wednesday. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Stop by the Westhampton Public Library on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month for playgroup. Storytime, games, and arts and crafts are featured. For kids 8 and under. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA.
  • 10am – COMMUNITY: The Westhampton Public Library‘s weekly Coffee and Chat runs every Wednesday at 10am. Come together with community members to share stories, news, and to stay connected. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-10:45am – STORYTIME: Kids can come to the Holyoke Public Library every Monday and Wednesday at 10am for stories with Nathan! 413-420-8105. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup every Wednesday at the Lanesborough Town Hall’s Community Room. For ages walking to 5 years. Run by The Family Center. 413-664-4821. 83 North Main Street. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc.is offering a toddler playgroup at Haskins Center for ages 1 to 2.5 years. 413-664-4821. 210 State St., North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – 11:30am – MUSIC AND LITERACY: Young children and their caregivers can visit the Wendell Free Library on Wednesdays through June 30, 2016 for Tunes and Tales with Sylvia Wetherby, organized by the Community Network for Children. This group may not run on school holidays and in inclement weather; please call ahead to check. 978-544-3559. 7 Wendell Depot Road, Wendell, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children hosts a playgroup for newborns through preschool-aged children with their caregivers at the Erving Elementary school every Wednesday through June 30, 2016. It may not run on school holidays and in inclement weather; please call ahead to check. 413-423-3326. 28 Northfield Road, Erving, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: There will be a playgroup every Wednesday and Friday at the Hilltown Family Center. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12pm – STORYTIME: Enjoy a morning of stories at the New Marlborough Library’s weekly storytime, held each Wednesday. This storytime series is sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. 1 Mill River-Great Barrington Road, New Marlborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12pm – GRANDFAMILIES SUPPORT GROUPThe term “grandfamilies” refers to families that are created when a relative or friend raises other relatives children. There are many reasons for grandfamilies to emerge, and each grandfamily experiences its own joys as well as difficulties. This support group for grandfamilies meets every fourth Wednesday of the month at the Hilltown Family Center. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Rd. Huntington, MA (FREE)
  • 10:15am-11:45am – KINSHIP SUPPORT GROUP: Grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and others who are raising their young relatives can attend a support group every fourth Wednesday in Huntington. Come to the group to learn about resources, meet others, share experiences, and seek support. Run by United Arc. 413-563-1981. Hilltown Family Center, 9 Russell Street (Route 9), Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Meekins Library librarian, Rochelle Wildfong, will host a story time in the children’s department every Wednesday, all year round. Fingerplays, songs, picture books, and circle games for pre-schoolers and their caregivers. After story hour, take the kids sledding behind the school, then head down to Bread Euphoria for a warm something to eat & drink! A delightful way to spend a Wednesday morning in the Hilltowns with your preK kids! 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: There is a storytime for preschool-age kids every Wednesday at the Monson Free Library! Come for stories and fun. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am — OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/HIKING: Come on a weekly, kid-led hike at the Hitchcock Center’s Larch Hill Conservation Area. “Toddle & Waddle It Baby!” is for caregivers and kids in carriers or with “walking legs.” Meet at the picnic tables near the boardwalk. 301-906-4700. 525 South Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime and crafts for ages 3-6 every Wednesday at the North Adams Public Library. 413-662-3133. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 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.
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Storytime for ages 3-8 at the Mason Square Branch Library. Come every Wednesday for stories, songs, and crafts. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11am – STEM: The Berkshire Museum is offering a Parent/Child STEM Session the second and fourth Wednesday of each month. Come explore science, technology, engineering, and math through books, hands-on activities, and play. Registration is required. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 413-443-7171 x21. 39 South Street. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12pm – STORYTIME: The Community Network for Children offers a story hour every Wednesday at the Leverett Library. Children ages 5 and under can come for music, movement, books, and hands-on activities. Runs through June 30, 2016. May not run on holidays or in inclement weather; please call ahead to check. 978-544-5157. 75 Montague Road. Leverett, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am & 2pm – FIBER ARTS:The Shakers are known for their beautiful and simple fiber crafts. Visit the Hancock Shaker Village any Wednesday to watch flax-processing and felted bead-making demonstrations by talented artisans who use traditional tools and techniques. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE for members and children 12 and under; $)
  • 11:00am-11:30am – STORYTIME Toddlers and their caregivers can come to the Forbes Library for Toddler Time, which includes stories, bubbles and songs with friends every Wednesday. 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12pm – STORYTIME: Preschool storyhour every Wednesday at the Dickinson Memorial Library with Ruthanne Paulson includes stories, music, movement, crafts, and a snack. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-12:30pm – GYM GROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a Gym Group at Haskins Center for ages walking to 5 years old. 413-664-4821. 210 State St., North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 12pm-1:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Every Wednesday there will be a support group for pregnant and postpartum mothers of children ages 0-5 at Square One’s Family Square, facilitated by MotherWoman. This group is a great place to talk about motherhood in a safe and confidential space. Childcare provided. 413-858-3122. 1095 Main Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 12:30pm-2pm – KINSHIP SUPPORT GROUP: Grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, and others who are raising young relatives can attend a support group every third Wednesday Come to the group to learn about resources, meet others, share experiences, and seek support. Run by United Arc. 413-563-1981. 90 Federal Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-2:30pm – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Wednesday at Midwifery Care of Holyoke. Expectant mothers and moms of babies under age 1 can come discuss all aspects of motherhood. 413-534-2700. 230 Maple Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-2:30pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: Parents, caregivers, and grandparents are invited to attend a Parents Supporting Parents Support Group every Wednesday at the Salasin Center. 413-775-0010. 474 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:30pm – NATURE STUDIES: Preschool-aged kids can attend Kidleidoscope every Wednesday at Natural Bridge State Park. This weekly program features forest-themed educational activities. 413-663-6392. McCauley Road. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:30pm-2:30pm – STORYTIME/BILINGUAL: Little ones can come to the Brightwood Library every Wednesday for a bilingual story club (English and Spanish). Come sing, dance, play, hear stories in English and Spanish, and meet new friends. 413-263-6805. 359 Plainfield Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-4pm — CHESS CLUB: Come to the Bushnell-Sage Library to play chess with your friends and neighbors, and our chessmaster,Stephen Greenspan. Any level of experience, all ages, and beginners are welcome. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street, Sheffield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-4pm — CHESS/TEENS: Come play chess with your friends (and maybe make some new ones) at Teen Chess Wednesdays at the Lee Library. 413-243-0385. 100 Main Street, Lee, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5:30pm – MAKER SPACE: Every Wednesday, Amherst Media hosts a drop-in group for makers of all ages and experience levels. Whether you’re working on computer programming, tech projects, knitting, other projects, or are just curious, stop by and check it out! 413-259-3300. 246 College Street. Amherst, MA.
  • 3:30pm-5pm CHESS : Come to the Chess Club at the East Longmeadow Public Library. Instruction and free play with our amazing instructor, Michael Gray. For Kindergarten-8th grade. Best for those with some chess knowledge. 413-525-5400, ext. 1511. 60 Center Square, East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-7:30pm — ARTISAN SKILLS/WEAVING: Help weave a blanket for the Youth Department at Emily Williston Memorial Library every Wednesday. The loom is set up, and kids can add to it anytime. 413-527-1031. 9 Park Street, Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – STORY/CRAFT: Join the Cushman Library during the school year for thematic picture book/craft activities, snacks and opportunity to meet other parents while the kids get crafty together. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm — STEM: Wednesday Wizards meets the third Thursday of every month at the Greenfield Public Library. A guest presenter introduces a science concept with a book and activity to inspire creativity. 413-772-1544. LeVanway Room, 402 Main Street, Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm — YOUNG WRITERS: Tweens and young teens who have stories to tell can practice and get tips from author and teacher Nell Wright on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month during the school year at the Greenfield Public Library. Come sharpen your writing skills and get feedback on your work. Limited to eight participants; pre-registration required. For ages 10-14. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5:30pm — COOKING: Learn to make simple, healthy, delicious recipes every Wednesday at The Bridge Family Resource Center. For all ages. 413-549-0297. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-7pm — PARENTING SKILLS: Fatherhood…the toughest job you’ll ever love! Come to Nurturing Fathers, a weekly group for all male caregivers sponsored by The Bridge Family Resource Center. Dinner and childcare provided. Registration required. 413-549-0297, ext. 6512. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-7:45pm — CHESS Chess requires complex planning skills, visual reasoning and memory. The social aspect of the game adds another level of fun. Join us at the Greenfield Public Library for chess club every Wednesday. The last Wednesday of each month will feature a speed chess tournament. 413-772-1544 x5. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-8pm — KNITTING: Come to the Bushnell-Sage Library to Sit and Knit! All levels welcome. 413-229-7004. 48 Main Street, Sheffield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-8pm — CRAFTING: Sheep & Shawl yarn and fiber arts shop in South Deerfield offers Knit/Crochet/Spin Circles every Wednesday night. 413-397-3680. 265 Greenfield Rd., South Deerfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-7:15pm — STORYTIME: Kids ages 3-6 can listen to stories in their PJs at East Longmeadow Public Library‘s play-filled Pajama Storytime every Wednesday. 413-525-5400, ext. 1511. 60 Center Square, East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:45pm-8:15pm — MUSIC STUDIES/SINGING: Kids and adults ages 13 and up can join Berkshire Sings! and learn to sing under the instruction of musician and teacher Robert Kelly at the Berkshire South Regional Community Center. Exercises in breathing, relaxation, and listening will be practiced. Songs include pop, folk, jazz standards, and show tunes. Opportunities to perform at community events. No auditions; everyone welcome. Registration requested. Drop-ins encouraged, but call ahead, as the group sometimes performs off-site during class time. 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE for members and guests)
  • 7pm – WRITING/STORYTELLING: Adults and older students are invited to the Forbes Library‘s reading series, “The Modern Real and Surreal: Writers and Artists on Our Age,” which meets on the first Wednesday of each month. This series invites the community to examine the relationships among story, art, empathy, and insight in our modern age. 413-587-1014. Coolidge Museum, 20 West Street, Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm — MUSIC/OPEN MIC:
    Come to the Palmer Historical & Cultural Center the first and second Wednesday of the month for Triple Creek Coffeehouse Open-Mic Night. All ages and levels of talent welcome in a friendly, supportive environment. 413-289-9295. 2072 Main Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE-WILL DONATION)
  • 7pm-8:30pm — MUSIC:
    Every second Thursday of the month, you’re invited to join other local community members in a drum circle. With a myriad of instruments we will draw on the rhythms of Brazilian, West African, and Latin American music. No experience necessary. Instruments provided but guests are welcome to bring any instruments they enjoy playing. Workshop 13. 13 Church Street, Ware, MA. ($)
  • 7pm-9pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group the fourth Wednesday of each month in Conference Room D at Cooley Dickinson Hospital. This is a bereavement group for infant and pregnancy loss. Please contact emptyarmsbereavement@gmail.com for more information. 413-387-0703. 30 Locust Street. Northampton, MA.
  • 7pm-9pm – PARENT SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group the second Wednesday of each month in the Owl and Raven Community Space. The group is for mothers and partners who have experienced the loss of a baby through miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. Please email lexi.walters@gmail.com for more information. 413-387-0703. 2 Conz Street, Unit 42. Northampton, MA.
  • 7pm-9pm – PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: The Creacion Latin Big Band has open practice sessions every first and third Wednesdays. Enjoy salsa, cha cha, mambo, and more, and enjoy food and drink from the beer garden, too. Audience members are invited to dance to their hearts’ content! 413-650-2670. Gateway City Arts, 92-114 Race Street, Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 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 teens and adults. Every Wednesday except the second Wednesday of each month. 99 Main Street. Amherst, MA. $

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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Thursday, March 31, 3pm-5pm
FIBER ART/WEAVING
Fiber arts such as weaving are ancient art forms, with tapestries dating back as far as 300 BC. Tapestries, artfully designed wall hangings, often served multiple purposes. They were originally made of heavy fabrics and provided insulation as well as decoration in homes. 4th–8th graders and their caregivers are invited to The Clark for an introduction to fiber art. You will be able to take home your own woven wall hanging. 413-458-2303. 225 South St, Williamstown, MA. (Adults $. Under 18 FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 4pm-4:45pm
LITERACY/HISTORY
Elizabeth Raum’s book Orphan Trains: An Interactive History Adventure teaches young readers about a welfare program in the late 1800s and early 1900s, wherein orphaned and homeless children were sent West on trains to be placed in foster homes. Raum takes an innovative approach to this topic, utilizing the form of a “choose your own adventure” book in which readers can pick where they want the story to go. This personal approach to history may help children connect to these events by empathizing with the real children who experienced the Orphan Train Movement. At the Westfield Athenaeum children in grades 3 through 5 will discuss this book and play games related to this historical period. The first 10 people to register get free copies of the book to keep. Call 413-568-7833 to register. 6 Elm St, Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 4pm-5pm
COMIC BOOK CLUB
Does your 3rd-5th grader like comic books? Does she draw? This week, the comic book club at the Jones library will be discussing the books Hilo, by Judd Winick, and Fairy Tale Comics. The group will also work on their own comic book! Comic book writing can give your child a visually creative outlet while also encouraging linguistic development. Bring your imagination and be ready to share ideas. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 4pm-6pm
PASTRY ARTS/SKILLSHARE
Bread is a staple of so many diets, and such an important food, that it has become synonymous with wealth in the English language. Words like “breadwinner” drive home the necessity of bread. The word “dough” has been a slang term for money for centuries. Join members of your community at the Pioneer Valley Breadhouse and learn how to make this famously valued food. There will be plenty of time to connect, relax, and talk while waiting for the dough to rise and the loaves to bake. Five College Women’s Studies Research Center on the Mount Holyoke College Campus. 83 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 7pm
JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL
Thursday, March 31 kicks off the 11th annual Pioneer Valley Jewish Film Festival with a screening of the 2015 film Dough. Now through April 14th, films will be screened across the pioneer valley in Amherst, Chicopee, Easthampton, Greenfield, Longmeadow, Northampton, Shelburne Falls, Springfield and West Springfield. Find a venue near you and celebrate Jewish history and culture through film. The festival will include award-winning, independent, feature films and documentaries. Visit the festival website for the full calendar of screenings. Various

Thursday, March 31, 5pm-7:30pm
PARENTING/SOCIAL MEDIA
Parents of sixth grade students are invited to JFK Middle School for a parent cafe. Attendees will explore the topic of social media as it relates to their children. Social media, a new phenomenon which parents did not have growing up, affects children in many ways. Some tweens and teens have trouble disconnecting from technology to focus on homework. Some are bullied or witness bullying online. Others may have trouble sleeping, if they spend too much time looking at screens before bed. And yet, there are also positive aspects to social media, bringing people together and informing them about community events. Come to this parent cafe to share insights, strategies and concerns with other parents to gain new perspectives on this complex subject. 100 Bridge Rd, Florence, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 5:30pm-7:30pm
PARENT CAFE
At this casual parenting event participants will discuss great ways to play and read with your children. Reading to and with your child is one of the simplest and most enjoyable ways to set your child on a path for success. Adults and children both benefit from reading as a relaxing activity before bed. Each parent who attends this event will receive four new children’s books! Enjoy a meal and conversation with other parents. Free on-site child care and transportation is available. Call 413-664-4821 to reserve, space is limited. Haskins Center Gym, 210 State Street, North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 6pm
WOMEN’S HISTORY/WRITING
Old Sturbridge Village will be celebrating Women’s History Month with talks from four female authors of historical fiction and non-fiction. Women’s History Month is not just a time to celebrate the achievements and events in the lives of historical women, it is also an apt time to think about how women today engage with history. You will hear from novelists and journalists on a wide range of historical topics. This talk will also include information on conducting historical research, how to interview eyewitnesses, and advice on getting your work own published. Anyone interested in writing, publishing, and women’s history will gain something from this lively discussion panel. 413-347-5056. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. ($)

Thursday, March 31, 6:30pm
BOOK DISCUSSION: AGING
Dr. Atul Gawande’s critically acclaimed, best-selling book, Being Mortal, is an insightful book for anyone, but it is particularly helpful for people dealing with the passing of a loved one. This book discussion at the Pelham Public Librarywill be moderated by medical professionals from Cooley Dickinson Hospital. Come with questions. These medical professionals will be using Being Mortal and this discussion to form goals for the end-of-life care they provide at the hospital. 413-253-0657. 2 S Valley Rd, Pelham, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, March 31, 6:30pm
MINDFULNESS
People who practice mindfulness often claim that the practice helps them relax, keeps them more focused, and generally makes life more enjoyable. With that kind of description, who wouldn’t want to at least give it a try? Mindfulness is remarkably simple. Being mindful means being aware, taking a moment to notice your thoughts, feelings, and senses. You can do this anytime, even during the high-stress moments of your day. Join Tzivia Gover, author of Joy in Every Moment at the Holyoke Public Library and she will offer several simple exercises for mindfulness which can help you alter your day-to-day perspective. 413-420-8101. 250 Chestnut Street, Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

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ONGOING FOR THURSDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9:30am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: Children ages 18 months through 3 years and their caregivers may participate in the Toddler Steps playgroup which meets on Thursdays, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-10:30am – STORYTIME: On Thursdays, young children and their caregivers can enjoy building early literacy skills at Richmond Reads, a weekly group sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. Richmond Library, 1831 State Road, Richmond, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Northampton Parents Center will be open Monday-Thursday from 9:30am-11:30am for playgroup, toys, books, activities, and more. Kids ages 5 and under and their caregivers can drop in to meet and play with others. 413-582-2636. 297 Main Street, Lower Level. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)
  • 9:30am-12pm — PLAYGROUP: Children ages 0-5 and their parents are invited to a playgroup at the Belchertown Family Center every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning. 413-835-5201. 720 Franklin Street, Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – STORYTIME: Storytime every Thursday at the Dalton Free Public Library. There will be stories, snacks, and a craft. 413-684-6112. 462 Main Street. Dalton, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a support group for parents with infants every Thursday Hilltown Family Center. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup every Thursday in Goshen Town Hall. There will be storytime, crafts, projects, and more. 42 Main Street. Goshen, MA.
  • 10am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP Add some playtime, socializing, and song to your morning at Sing N Play each Thursday. Open to young children and their caregivers, and sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104. Bushnell-Sage Library, 48 Main Street, Sheffield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MUSIC: The Jones Library will offer a preschool storytime every Thursday. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: No child is too young to benefit from having a story read to him or her! Listening to a read-aloud story allows children to encounter new sounds and vocabulary, teaches them how to use a book, and introduces ideas about how stories are created. Share the joy of reading with your child at the Lenox Library‘s storytime every Thursday morning. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street, Lenox, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:15am – STORYTIME: Storytime for toddlers (ages 2-5) every Thursday at the Ramsdell Library. 413-274-3738. 1087 Main Street. Housatonic, 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. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11am — STORYTIME: The Lee Library offers a parent/child program for children ages 2 ½ -5 every Thursday. 413-243-0385. Children’s Room, 100 Main Street, Lee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am — STEM: South Berkshire Kids
    celebrates Science! Technology! Engineering! and Math! through stories, demonstrations, songs, and tabletop activities at the Lee Library the first Thursday of each month. For ages 2-5. 413-464-5095. Children’s Room, 100 Main Street, Lee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12:30pm – PLAY GROUP: Children birth – 5 years old are welcome to attend a neighborhood playgroup at Sixteen Acres Library. Enjoy stories, fingerplays, a craft and playtime. Adult must accompany and consistently supervise children, siblings welcome. 413-263-6858. 1187 Parker Street, Springfield MA. (FREE)
  • 10:45am-11:45am – PARENTING SKILLS/SUPPORT: Would you like to meet other parents in the area and share your parenting triumphs and challenges? Would you enjoy learning sound parenting advice from a trusted source? Check out Sips & Tips, a parenting group that meets on Thursdays, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. Childcare is provided. 413-644-0104. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:45am-12pm – NUTRITION & CULINARY ARTS: Children ages 2.5-5 years and their caregivers are invited to Kids’ Kitchen, a fun cooking group that meets on Thursdays. Children who participate in meal preparation often show greater tolerance for a variety of foods and healthier eating habits than children who do not. The focus will be on learning basic food prep techniques and making healthy choices for everyday meals. Sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. 413-644-0104 x 1159. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12pm – PARENTING SUPPORT: Mothers, fathers, grandparents, and all others providing care for a child age 0-9 months are invited to Welcome Baby, a support group that meets on Thursdays, sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. Learn how to address the needs of infants and yourself, and address feeding concerns and other topics. Childcare is provided. 413-644-0104 x 1159. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-12:30pm – GYM GROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a Gym Group at the Haskins Center for ages walking to 5 years old. 413-664-4821. 210 State St., North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm & 5pm – INTERGENERATIONAL SKILL SHARING: Dottie’s Coffee Lounge hosts two knitting groups most Thursdays. The 3pm group is open to all levels, and is led by Kay, who spins her own wool. The 5pm group, led by Caitlin, focuses on teaching and practicing the fundamentals of knitting, but all levels and projects are welcome. 413-443-1792. 444 North Street, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:30am-1:30pm – JOB SKILLS: Do you need help finding a job? Do you need assistance in creating or revising a resume and/or with interview skills? The Amherst Survival Center provides support during weekly sessions. And you can also join for lunch between 12pm and 1pm! You can ride the #33 bus right to the door. The Amherst Survival Center, 138 Sunderland Rd., North Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 12:15pm – FINE ARTS: Visit the Springfield Museums‘ Michele and Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts for their popular Thursday Museums a la Carte lectures, featuring presentations on a variety of fine art-related topics! Visitors are welcome to bring a lunch; coffee and cookies will be provided. Intended for older students and adults. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 800-625-7738. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA. (< $)
  • 12:30pm-2:30pm – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every third Thursday at Scantic Valley YMCA. Mothers of babies 12 months and under can come talk about motherhood at this monthly program. 413-583-3527. 45 Post Office Park. Wilbraham, MA. (FREE)
  • 1:00pm-3:00pm – PLAYGROUP: Too old for tummy time? Too young for toddler time? Drop into this fun social time for babies at Forbes Library! 413-587-1011. Community Room, Forbes Library, 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 2pm-4pm – KNITTING: Knitting provides an excellent base for intergenerational skill sharing every Thursday. Bring your current project or one you’ve been meaning to start! All levels of knitters are welcome at this Thursday knitting circle, hosted at Dottie’s Coffee Lounge. 413-443-1792. 444 North Street, Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 2:30pm-4:30pm – ARTS & CRAFTS: The Hatfield Public Library holds a weekly Crafting Club for ages 5 and up every Thursday! Come to the library and get creative at this fun program. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5pm – STEAM: Kids can attend a STEAM program at the Greenfield Public Library on the third Thursday of each month. A guest presenter will cover either science, technology, engineering, art, or math using a book. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm — LEGOS: Kids ages 9-15 can use their creativity and engineering skills during LEGO Club every Thursday at the West Springfield Public Library. 413-736-4561. 511 Main Street, West Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-4:45pm – MINECRAFT: Tweens and teens can attend Minecraft Club at the Indian Orchard Branch Library every Thursday. Come make new friends and trade Minecraft tips and tricks! 413-263-6846. 44 Oak Street. Indian Orchard, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:30pm-5pm – CHESS: Every second and fourth Thursday, kids are invited to the Mason Library for chess. There will be 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. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5pm – STORYTIME: The Hubbard Library is offering a storytime for students ages 5-8. Every Thursday. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5:30pm — SERVICE LEARNING/SOCIAL JUSTICE//TEENS: At PeaceJam, teens can join their peers to study the work of 13 Nobel Peace Laureates then develop service learning projects that address the issues they care about. The group meets every Thursday at The Bridge Family Resource Center. For ages 14 and up. 413-549-0297, ext. 6512. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-8pm – GAMES/LEGOS: Families can have fun every Thursday at Gaylord Memorial Library‘s game and LEGO night! Stop by for board games, puzzles, LEGOs, and more. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 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)
  • 4:30pm – AFTERSCHOOL & YO-YO: Not many toys can boast over 2,500 years of use worldwide, but the yo-yo has enjoyed consistent use in hundreds of cultures for nearly three millenia. The popular Northampton education-based store A to Z hosts Yo-Yo School three times a week inside their store, and their teachers are true masters. Open to all ages, although older elementary children often have the motor skills and coordination needed for it to be a bit easier to learn. Read more about Yo-Yo school on Hilltown Families. Call 413-586-1611. 57 King St., Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm-6:30pm – LEGO: Kids ages 6 and up can have fun and get creative with LEGOs at the Mason Square Branch Library‘s LEGO Club every Thursday. Call to sign up. 413-263-6853. 765 State Street. Springfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm-8pm — MUSEUM ADVENTURES/ART: The Williams College Museum of Art
    is open late every Thursday. Bring the family for some after-work adventures! 413-597-2429. 15 Lawrence Hall Drive, Suite 2, Williamstown, MA. (FREE)
  • 5:30pm-7pm — PARENTING SUPPORT GROUP: Get together with other parents for the “Parent Self Care Club,” and discuss ways to take care of yourself in the midst of stressful responsibilities. Every Thursday at the Bridge Family Resource Center. Dinner will be served and childcare is available. Please call ahead to reserve child care. 413-549-0297 x 6512. 100 University Drive Suite A3. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm – PARENTING & CLIMATE CHANGE: Mothers Out Front is a group of “mothers and others” who are concerned about climate change and passionate about creating a cleaner energy future for future generations. Learn more about the group’s work and meet other parents with whom to share your stories, hopes, and fears at their monthly climate support gatherings, held every 2nd Tuesday and 4th Thursday of the month. RSVP via the MOF site. Sunderland, MA (Tuesdays) and Florence, MA (Thursdays). (FREE)
  • 6pm-7pm – LEGOS: The Family Resource Center is offering a LEGO group for ages 4-12 the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. 413-664-4821. North Adams Library, 4th Floor. 74 Church Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-8pm – KNITTING: Spruce up your knitting skills and spend time with community members of all ages at the Dickinson Memorial Library‘s knitting group every Thursday evening. All skill levels are welcome. 413-498-2455. 115 Main Street. Northfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm – GAMES: There will be a family game night the third Thursday of each month at Montague Common Hall. Spend quality time playing games with family and friends. 34 Main Street. Montague, MA. (FREE/DONATION)
  • 6:30pm-8:00pm – PARENTING: Parents of transgender, gender nonconforming, or questioning children, teenagers, or adults are invited to participate in TransformingParents, a support group that meets on the first Thursday of every month (except Labor Day). 413-695-7686. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)
  • 6:30pm-8:30pm – TRIVIA: Display your trivia knowledge the first Thursday of each month at the Jones Library‘s trivia night! There will be two rounds of 15 questions and you can either come with a team or form one at the library (teams must be smaller than 5). There will also be prizes and refreshments. Intended for older students and adults. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (DONATION $)
  • 7pm-7:30pm – STORYTIME: The Hubbard Library will have a “Tuck Me In” storytime for ages 3-7 the first Thursday of each month. Kids can come to the library in pajamas and enjoy this bedtime-themed storytime. Registration is required. 413-583-5646. 24 Center Street. Ludlow, MA. (FREE)
  • 7pm-9pm — KNITTING: Knitting Night happens at Makers’ Mill every Thursday. Free needles and hooks available for check out and discounted yarn. Bring a work in progress or start something new while making new friends. Open to all. 413-749-2073. 73 Main Street, North Adams, MA.(FREE)

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Friday, April 1, 2016

Friday, April 1, 8am-10am
ORNITHOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE WALK
One way you can tell Spring is in the air, besides changes in temperature, is the sound. Suddenly, you can hear more birds chirping. At night, there is a chorus of crickets and other noisy bugs. Join Pleasant Valley Caretaker Jonathan Pierce at the Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary and learn how to spot migrating birds. What do these new visitors look like? What do they sound like? Bring binoculars. Beginners are welcome. This event is best suited for adults. Holmes Rd, Pittsfield, MA. (>$)

Friday, April 1, 11am-12:30pm
GRANDPARENTS’ GROUP
Grandparents face their own challenges, separate from parenting. The purpose of this group is to provide grandparents with a space to connect and share their experiences. A lunch will be provided for participants as well as children (in childcare) during the event. Whether you are a new grandparent or have several grandchildren, this is a great way to make new friends, and become familiar with the resources at the Ware Family Center. 413-967-8127. 49 Church Street, Ware, MA. (FREE)

Friday, April 1, 3pm-4:30pm
APRIL FOOLS
April Fool’s Day may seem silly or even potentially harmful if taken too far. Yet, when executed within reason, April Fools Day pranks provide an excellent opportunity for us to sharpen our awareness of reliable information sources. People constantly peddle misinformation online. Being able to detect inconsistencies and subtle clues that an information source is dubious helps children and adults navigate the world of information. Plus, harmless April Fools Day jokes can be a lot of fun! Give your children a chance to be mischievous and funny with their friends at the Westfield Athenaeum. 413-568-7833. Ages 13-18. 6 Elm St, Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, April 1, 4:15pm
THEATER/CLIMATE CHANGE/HISTORY
How long have scientists known about climate change? In the early 19th century, scientists identified the greenhouse effect and some began to suggest that human activity could impact the climate. In 1960, Dr. Charles Keeling demonstrated that CO2 levels in the atmosphere were rising. This play, Dr. Keeling’s Curve, will shed light on this historical discovery while providing an in-depth look into the life of Dr. Keeling. Neilson Library Browsing Room at Smith College. 7 Neilson Drive, Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Friday, April 1, 5:15pm-6:30pm
INCLUSION/MUSIC/COMMUNITY MEAL
Join other families with kids ages 0-6 to welcome the Sabbath at Tot Shabbat, offered by Beit Ahavah Reform Synagogue. The kids will enjoy music and activities led by Marlene Rachelle and Rabbi Riqi Kosovske, then share a veggie potluck dinner. Adults can socialize and relax. Interfaith and GLBTQ families, nursing moms, babies and siblings of all ages, grandparents, new members, first-timers, and friends are all welcome! 413-587-3770. 130 Pine Street, Florence, MA. (FREE)

Friday, April 1, 7pm
NEW ENGLAND HISTORY/FRENCH
For over 25 years Jeanne Douillard has probed the history of the French in New England. In researching her own genealogy she discovered she had Québecois, Acadien, Native American and English roots. Her passion to learn more led her to delve into conflicting historiographies. English, French and American historians offered up irreconcilable views of La Nouvelle France. Make sure you pre-register online . 413-775-1661. GCC Downtown, 270 Main Street, Greenfield, MA ($)

Friday, April 1, 7pm
MUSIC STUDIES/IRISH BAGPIPE
Have you heard of uilleann pipes? This form of bagpipe is pumped by the elbow, producing a sweeter and quieter tone than other types. This bagpipe also has a wider octave range than others. Paddy Keenan’s use of uilleann pipes as a solo musician has extended his popularity beyond traditional Irish music circles and into the mainstream. Come to The Clark Art Museum to celebrate Irish music. Local folk band Long Journey will open. Food and drink will be available for purchase. 413-458-2303. 225 South St, Williamstown, MA. ($$)

Friday, April 1, 8pm
MULTIMEDIA PERFORMANCE
Did you know that some colleges, including Berkeley College of Music, now offer a degree in electronic music? Computers and other electronic devices have been utilized by a variety of musical groups and individuals for years now. Some rely entirely on electronics, while others blend new and traditional, electronic and acoustic instruments. The Mount Holyoke Symphony Orchestra will be playing music for orchestra and electronics, while also combining film, dance and interactive video in this multimedia performance. Local artists and Mount Holyoke College students will join together in this exploration of technology through art. For further details, please contact Eileen O’Grady by email at ograd22e@mtholyoke.edu. To order tickets online, visit: brown paper tickets. Chapin Auditorium, Mount Holyoke College Campus. 50 College St, South Hadley, MA. ($$. Students >$)

Friday, April 1, 9:30pm
JAPANESE CULTURE/FILM STUDIES
Every Friday in April, Amherst Cinema will be celebrating Japanese culture with a different movie. This week they will show the 2013 film, Jellyfish Eyes (not rated) a science/fiction fantasy story of a boy who befriends a fantastical creature that the grown ups cannot see. Director Takashi Murakami is an internationally renowned Japanese artist. In this film, he brings his experience in the fine arts of painting and sculpture to a new medium, making for a visually stunning viewing experience. This live action film involves the use of computer generated characters. Come to Amherst Cinema to witness a film which has clearly been influenced by a background in other artistic forms. 413-253-2547. 28 Amity Street, Amherst, MA. ($)

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ONGOING FOR FRIDAY (To add your free ongoing event/activity here, email us at info@hilltownfamilies.org)

  • 9am-10:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Community Network for Children hosts a playgroup for newborns through preschool-aged children with their caregivers at the Shutesbury Elementary School every Friday through June 30, 2016. It may not run on school holidays and in inclement weather; please call ahead to check. 413-259-1212. 23 West Pelham Road, Shutesbury, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am – WRITING: The Edwards Public Library‘s Writing Group meets every Friday. Older students with a passion for writing of any style can attend this supportive intergenerational group. 413-527-9480. 30 East Street. Southampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Young kids can play, learn, and discover at a weekly program every Friday at the Becket Washington School. 413-655-0146. 12 Maple Street. Becket, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Easthampton Family Center is open every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday through May 2016 for drop-in playgroup and activities for kids ages 5 and under. The Family Center follows the Easthampton Public Schools schedule. 413-527-5496. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: The Cummington Family Center is holding a playgroup every Wednesday and Friday through May 2016. Young kids can come play and make friends. Takes place in old Berkshire Trail Elementary School. 2 Main Street. Cummington, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: Frontier Regional CFCE is offering a playgroup for kids ages 5 and under every Tuesday and Friday at Sunderland Elementary School through June 10, 2016. Follows Sunderland school schedule. 413-665-8928. 1 Swampfield Drive. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-11:30am – PLAYGROUP: There will be a weekly playgroup every Friday at Whole Children for children ages 5 and under. 413-585-8010. 41 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 9:30am-12pm — PLAYGROUP: Children ages 0-5 and their parents are invited to a playgroup at the Belchertown Family Center every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning. 413-835-5201. 720 Franklin Street, Belchertown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup/storytime every Friday at Anne T. Dunphy School. 1 Petticoat Hill Road. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am – PLAYGROUP: Childcare of the Berkshires, Inc. holds a playgroup every Friday at the playground on Narragansett Avenue. 413-664-4821. Narragansett Avenue. Lanesborough, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am & 2pm – GEOLOGY: Learn about the fascinating geology of Natural Bridge State Park at their Marvelous Marble Tour every Friday at 10am & 2pm. Join a park interpreter for an easy walk around the park exploring its geologic history and the remains of the 19th- and 20th-century marble quarry that once operated on the grounds. All ages will enjoy exploring the park and learning some interesting local geology. 413-663-6392. McCauley Road. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PLAYGROUP: Child Care of the Berkshires, Inc. is offering a free baby group for babies and caretakers at the Williamstown Youth Center the first Friday of every month. 413-663-6593. School Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am – PRENATAL SUPPORT: Exercise and emotional support are both important components of a healthy pregnancy. Get some of both at a walk and talk group that allows pregnant women to gather, support each other, and learn together. Each session begins with a walk and ends with a sit-down talk about topics such as nutrition, health, and infant care. This group is sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. Childcare is provided. 413-644-0104 x 1159. 442 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-11am — BABY & ME/PLAYGROUP Pittsfield CFCE hosts an interactive Baby & Me Playgroup for parents with babies ages 1 and under each Friday. Explore and connect with others, and learn from guest speakers. Pre-registration required. 413-441-0974. 480 West Street. Pittsfield, MA (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Drop-in time at the Haskins Center every Friday. Come play and make friends every week. 413-664-4821. 210 State Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Friday at the Community Action Family Center. Expectant mothers and moms of infants can attend this group to discuss adjustment to motherhood. Childcare provided; babies in arms welcome. 413-387-0703. 220 Russell Street. Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: There will be a playgroup every Friday at the Hilltown Family Center. 413-667-2203. 9 Russell Road. Huntington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – MOTHER SUPPORT GROUP: There will be a MotherWoman support group every Friday at the MotherWoman Office. Expectant mothers and moms of infants through preschoolers can attend this group to discuss all aspects of motherhood. Childcare provided for ages 4 and under. 413-256-1145. 1200 North Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12noon – PLAYGROUP: Playgroup for preschool-age Hilltown children at the Chesterfield Community Center the first and third Friday of each month with free play, toys, songs, stories, crafts, and a free book. 413-296-9201. Chesterfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 10am-12pm – PLAYGROUP: Incorporate much-needed physical activity into your child’s day by participating in Skip & Dip, a high-energy playgroup sponsored by Community Health Programs of Berkshire County. This group, which meets on Fridays, starts with an hour of playtime in the gym with assorted toys and equipment, followed by an hour of swimming in the pool. 413-644-0104. Berkshire South Regional Community Center, 15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Every Friday is Bounce and Rhyme Storytime at the Monson Free Library! Kids 2 ½ and younger can come enjoy stories, songs, and rhymes. 413-267-3866. 2 High Street. Monson, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – MOVEMENT: The Chicopee Public Library holds a weekly Music and Movement program for kids ages 5 and under every Friday. Come have fun moving, singing, and dancing. 413-594-1800. 449 Front Street. Chicopee, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am – STORYTIME: Families can attend the “Family Frolic Storytime” every Friday at Gaylord Memorial Library! Enjoy stories, musical plays, and crafts. 413-538-5047. 47 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – MUSIC & PLAYGROUP: Children ages 2-5 with their caregivers are invited to the Mason Library‘s Sing N Play group every Friday. Please register in advance for one 4-week session. New sessions begin each month. 413-528-2403. 231 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-11:30am – STORYTIME/ART/MUSIC Toddlers ages 2-5 with their caregivers are invited to the Ramsdell Library every Friday for the “Time for Tots” group. This hour of fun will include stories, songs, art, and movement. 413-274-3738. 1087 Main Street, Housatonic, MA. (FREE)
  • 10:30am-12noon — PLAYGROUP: Socialize with other parents while your child plays at the Infant & Toddler Playgroup at The Bridge Family Resource Center every Friday. Light breakfast served. For kids ages 0-3 and their caregivers. 413-549-0297. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12pm – STORYTIME: Preschool Story Time on the first Friday of every month through the end of June 2016 at the Cushman Library. Stories, coloring, crafts, songs, activities, snacks, and more. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)
  • 11:00am – STORYTIME: The Sunderland Public Library’s Head of Youth Services, Kelly Daniels Baker, invites children ages 3-5 and their families to a preschool storytime. Includes stories, songs, finger plays, and crafts. Sunderland Public Library, 20 School St., Sunderland, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-11:30am – MUSEUM-BASED PLAY: Visit the Berkshire Museum for WeeMuse Adventures, a weekly program every Friday that will feature songs, stories, scavenger hunts, playtime, and more. Intended audience is children 18 months – 3 years with a caregiver; siblings welcome. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street, Pittsfield, MA. ($)
  • 11am-12pm – STEM STORYTIME The third Friday of every month the Cushman Library will be running a STEM themed storytime for preschoolers. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Come see how we relate these topics to everyday concepts which preschools understand and find entertaining. 28 Church St, Bernardston, MA. (FREE)
  • 11am-12:50pm – ICE SKATING: Want to teach a child how to ice skate but find it difficult to navigate the ice when it is so crowded? The Mullins Center on the UMass Amherst Campus offers a “just for families” skate (no college students) every Friday throughout the school year. You can borrow ice skates or bring your own. Skate rental is free with paid admission. Parents and caregivers skate free when accompanying children. Call to confirm: 413-545-2791, Mullins Center. 200 Commonwealth Ave., University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Amherst, MA (<$)
  • 12am-2pm – WRITING Do you want writing prompts? Support and feedback from other writers? Every Friday at the Greenfield Public Library writers get together for discussion, exercises and to share their work. Every other weekday at the library you are also welcome to drop into the writer’s lunch for self-directed writing time with other writers. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 12:30pm-2pm — PLAYGROUP/PARENTING SUPPORT: First-time parents with children ages 0-15 months are invited to the Welcome Baby drop-in group every Friday at Storrs Library. Enjoy reading, music, and interactive play provided by Pathways for Parents. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 1pm-3pm — CRAFTING: Sheep & Shawl yarn and fiber arts shop in South Deerfield, MA offers Knit/Crochet/Spin Circles every Friday afternoon. 413-397-3680. 265 Greenfield Rd., South Deerfield, MA. (FREE)
  • 3pm-5pm — TEENS: Get together with other teens at the Teen Lounge at Jones Library every Friday. 413-259-3091. 43 Amity Street, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 3:15pm-4:15pm — MINECRAFT
    Kids in grades 2 and up can play Minecraft at the Storrs Library every Firday. Light snack served. Pre-registration requested. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street, Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5:30pm — FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT: Celebrate the end of the week with a movie that the whole family can enjoy at Family Movie NIght at The Bridge Family Resource Center every Friday. For all ages. 413-549-0297. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 4pm-5:30pm — INCLUSION/GLBTTQQIA:
    The Bridge Family Resource Center offers a safe space for young people to be who they are, regardless of sexual orientation, gender expression, or gender identity, every Friday at its GLBTTQQIA Youth Drop-In Time. 413-549-0297, ext. 6510. 101 University Drive Suite A3, Amherst, MA. (FREE)
  • 4-8pm — ART/ART STUDIES: Experience hands-on art-making for all ages as part of Free Second Fridays at the Smith College Museum of Art. Come with Open Eyes and join a guided gallery conversation exploring a different art object each month. Light refreshments. 413-585-2760. 20 Elm Street at Bedford Terrace, Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 5pm-8pm – COMMUNITY CELEBRATION: The first Friday of each month, First Friday Greenfield takes place downtown. Stores and restaurants will be open late, and there will be music, activities, art shows, and more. Support local businesses and explore everything Greenfield has to offer at this fun monthly event. Downtown. Greenfield, MA.
  • 5pm-8pm — OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/TUBING: No sledding hill nearby? Enjoy tubing at Ski Butternut‘s eight-lane tubing park every Friday night. Ticket covers use of a tube and the tubing lift for two hours. One person per tube. 413-528-2000. 380 State Road, Great Barrington, MA. ($)
  • 5:30pm-8pm – GAMES: Game night happens at A2Z Science and Learning Store. Stop by on a Friday night to meet up with others and try out new games. Suitable for older children and teens. Ongoing. 413-586-1611. 57 King Street, Northampton, MA. (FREE)
  • 6pm-8:30pm – PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Parents/caregivers can drop off kids ages 3-12 at Berkshire South Regional Community Center while you enjoy date night every Friday! Kids will enjoy swimming, activities, pizza, and stories. Cost includes pizza dinner. Reservations required at least 48 hours in advance. 413-528-2810. 15 Crissey Road. Great Barrington, MA. ($)
  • 7pm-9pm — COMMUNITY CELEBRATION/DRUM CIRCLE: Join your neighbors for a musical celebration of life, love, and community at the One Love Community Drum Circle at Berkcirque the second Friday of each month. Bring your hand drums, percussion instruments, hula hoops, coin skirts, and dance shoes, if you have them. There will be an hour of drumming and dancing, followed by a short prayer and sharing, then more drumming. A drug- and alcohol-free event. 115 Gas House Lane, Great Barrington, MA. (SUGGESTED DONATION <$)
  • 7:30pm – ASTRONOMY: Have you ever learned about an eclipse, comet, meteor shower, or other celestial event after it happened? Don’t miss out on another one! The “Stars over Springfield” observatory series invites the public to learn about and enjoy the night sky with the help of the Springfield Science Museum‘s large rooftop telescope on the first Friday of every month. There will be a short talk on an astronomy-related topic, followed by opportunities to view celestial objects of interest. These programs are best suited for families with children ages 8 and up, although younger children are also welcome. In case of clouds or rain, a planetarium show will replace the outdoor viewing. Borrow a free museum pass from the library. 413-263-6800 x 318. 21 Edwards Street, Springfield, MA. (< $)
  • 8pm – TALENT SHOW: The first Friday of every month, the Valley Talent Showcase takes place at Gateway City Arts. Come watch local bands, musicians, dancers, and more perform on stage, or sign up to participate and gain experience performing onstage for an audience. This is a great chance to see some talented local groups perform or to get your name out there. 413-650-2670. 92-114 Race Street. Holyoke, MA. (< $)

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Hilltown Families’ list of Weekly Suggested Events is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Belchertown, Buckland, Chicopee, Colrain, Cummington, Deerfield, Goshen, Hadley, Heath, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne, Southampton, Sunderland, Westhampton and Worthington Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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