Suggested Events for July 23rd-29th, 2016

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

“As someone new to the area, Hilltown Families has been a great source of information…I appreciate the balance of fun, community-service, and educational events discussed and promoted on the site. It is great to have a one-stop shop for this information!” – Laura Draucker (Amherst, MA)

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

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Bulletin Board

Exploring educational options for your family? Check out Oak Meadow’s flexible, creative homeschooling curriculum for kindergarten to grade 12, or enrollment in their teacher-supported distance learning school. The K-8 curriculum is child-centered, experiential, playful, and nature-based. High School offers challenging courses, exciting options for earning credit, and college counseling for teens who wish to pursue their passions and interests while earning their diploma. And for parents new to homeschooling, Oak Meadow offers a new online teacher training program, Foundations in Independent Learning. Ready to make a change this fall? Visit Oak Meadow’s website to learn more: www.oakmeadow.com.

Fridays Jul 15 – Aug 16

Shabbat Shabloom! Fridays at 10 am on Abundance Farm in Northampton. End the week with a joyful morning of music and movement with Felicia Sloin and Amy Meltzer – especially for ages 0-5. Tour the farm, sample what’s in season, and take flowers home for Shabbat. Every Friday morning at 10 am until the end of August. First visit free, suggested donation of $5/family thereafter. All are welcome. Abundance Farm is located at Congregation B’nai Israel, 253 Prospect Street in Northampton, across the street from the YMCA. For more information, contact Amy@abundancefarm.org or join the Shabbat Shabloom! facebook group.

Jul 23 & 30

Join Enchanted Circle Theater and The Trustees at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead in Cummington for a unique living history experience! A Fiery and Still Voice: William Cullen Bryant at Home is a site-based history play where past and present converge to bring the Homestead to life! This is a play about love, passion and social justice. Performances are at 11am, 12pm and 1pm on Saturday, July 23rd and Saturday July 30th rain or shine. Please wear comfortable walking shoes as the audience travels through several rooms in the house as well as outdoors. Nineteen shows are scheduled throughout the summer and early fall. Tickets are limited, so be sure to reserve in advance at www.thetrustees.org.

July 26

Meet The Cat in the Hat and Things 1 and 2 at the Springfield Museums’ “Celebrate Seuss Day” on Tuesday July 26 (10am-2pm)! The many FREE activities scheduled that day include balloon sculpting, face painting, plus performances by the Boston Circus Guild. The Cat is coming to make a major announcement at 10am that Seuss fans won’t want to miss! It’s all part of the Summer Spectacular Family Series, with great family entertainment, live animal demos, and fun art and science activities every weekday through August 12th. For more information, visit www.springfieldmuseums.org.

Jul 30

The Fab Faux returns to The Mahaiwe Performing Art Center in Great Barrington on Saturday, July 30 at 8pm! With a commitment to the accurate reproduction of Beatles`classics, The Fab Faux are known for their painstaking recreations of the songs – with emphasis on the later works never performed live by the Beatles. Imagine hearing complex material like “Strawberry Fields Forever” or “I Am the Walrus” performed in complete part-perfect renditions; or such harmony-driven songs as “Nowhere Man”, and “Paperback Writer”, reproduced only note-for-note! For tickets, call the box office at 413-528-0100 or go online at www.mahaiwe.org/TheFabFaux.

Jul 30

Connecticut Trolley Museum will hold a Fire Truck Show on Saturday, July 30th. This is your opportunity to get up close and personal with all aspects of the firefighting industry including over twenty fire trucks to view. During your visit you will also learn more about the Fire Truck Museum collection along with local Fire Departments equipment & vehicles. Don’t miss your opportunity to sit in a real fire trucks, try on fireman’s turnout gear, watch fire hose demonstrations, maneuver through a kid’s maze using a fire hose and take home a souvenir fire hat. For the convenience of all, food and refreshments will be available for purchase. CTM is located in East Windsor, CT. For more info visit ct-trolley.org or call 860-627-6540.

Sep 25

The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts’ annual Will Bike 4 Food charity cycling event is returning for its sixth year on Sunday, Sept. 25 in Hatfield. You can pedal towards a hunger free community by riding in this fun event as an individual or forming a team with your friends, family and coworkers. With 4 routes to choose from (10, 25, 50 or 100 miles), riders of all ages can get involved. There’ll be music, food, beverages, games and more. Last year’s event raised $100,000 to help feed our neighbors in need. You can make this year’s event even more successful. Early bird registration ends Aug. 31. To register, or to learn more about WB4F, visit their website at willbike4food.org.

Jul 9 – Aug 13

Summer Entertainment Series at the South Hadley Village Commons: Saturdays at 10:30am, July 9th-August 13th. For a lively Saturday morning full of music, magic, and lots of fun, visit the Village Commons in South Hadley! Performances run throughout the summer, beginning July 9th, and include Tom Ricardi and his birds of prey, Trevor the Games Man, music from Roger Tincknell and Dorothy Cresswell, and magic by Ed the Wizard and Ed Popielarczyk! These hour-long events are free and held outdoors in the courtyard in front of the Odyssey Bookshop. In case of rain, entertainment will be held inside the bookstore. For a detailed schedule, call the Odyssey at 413-534-7307, or visit their website, odysseybks.com!

Jul 22-24 & 29-30

It’s the greatest sports story of all time! Welcome to The International Raceway. Our contestants: The Tortoise—PaintBox Theatre newcomer Michael King vs. The Hare—PaintBox favorite and Valley icon Kelsey Flynn. Yes, Kelsey’s coming out of retirement! She is dusting off her rabbit ears and hopping into the race. We promise lots of cheering and excitement as we present this folktale dash for glory. Performances are Fri. July 22, 7pm, Sat.-Sun. July 23 and 24, 10:30am & 1pm at the Williston Theatre in Easthampton, and Fri. July 29, 7pm, Sat. July 30, 10:30am & 1pm at the Shea Theater in Turners Falls. Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets.com. Group discounts: call 413-923-7159. PaintBoxTheatre.com.

Jul 26

Camp Odyssey on Tuesday, July 26th at 3pm: Improv Workshop with Lisa Papademetriou, Molly B. Burnham, and Heidi Hass. For lots of laughs and plenty of fun, join local authors Lisa Papademetriou and Molly B. Burnham and improv extraordinaire Heidi Hass for a workshop that will make you a master of improv! A nonrefundable $5 supply fee per child or the purchase of related book (for up to 2 children) is required, as well as pre-registration at least 2 days prior to event. Events last for approximately (but not always) one hour. Minimum age is 6 years old. Younger children accepted if parents stay to assist. Odyssey Bookshop, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA. Call 413-534-7307 or email kids@odysseybks.com to sign up!

Jul 30

Celebrate the eighth Harry Potter book with a Hogwarts Reunion and Midnight Book Release Party at Odyssey Bookshop, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA! On Saturday, July 30th, at 10pm, The Odyssey Bookshop, seller of fine wizarding books and wares, is delighted to welcome all wizard- and muggle-folk for a special reunion and Midnight celebration of the latest book about the life of one of Hogwarts’s most famous alumnus, Harry Potter class of ’98! Enjoy participating in a costume contest, browse wands at Ollivander’s, pose at the photobooth, sample some of Harry’s birthday cake (he’s turning 36), and much more! RSVPs are required! Visit http://bit.ly/1sJ8fDb to register, preorder the book, and view an activity list!

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LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 23-29, 2016

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

Donate Now Events Happening in the Hilltowns

Saturday, July 23, 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. Novelty Music Episode with Guest DJ, Jack Forman of Recess Monkey. Recess Monkey whisks listeners of the Hilltown Family Variety Show off on a trip to the Novelty Shop for a madcap hour of truly strange musical oddities! The band’s bassist frontman Jack Forman guides us through a collection of dust-covered rarities and instant classics, each guaranteed to out-weird the last! 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 9 years!

Saturday, July 23, 9:30am-4:30pm
CULINARY ARTS/NEW ENGLAND HISTORY
Learn about New England history in a participatory way, and learn practical skills for your own life, through open hearth cooking demonstrations at Historic Deerfield. Experts will demonstrate how to make cooling beverages and foods, such as pickles, jam, and lemonade, through techniques used in early New England. 413-774-5581. 80 Old Main Street. Deerfield, MA. (Adults $. Ages 6-17 <$. 6 and under, Deerfield residents, and museum members FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 10am
BOTANY/PTERIDOLOGY
Fiddleheads, that delicious early spring delicacy, is a young fern frond before is unfurls into a beautiful green fan that waves in the shady forest breeze in the summer months. One of the oldest surviving plants, dating back to over 300 million years, ferns are one of the most diverse plant groups with a unique reproduction adaptation. Join the Pioneer Valley Fern Society for a guided fern walk to learn more about pteridology (the study of ferns) and the ferns that with which we share our local habitat. Come curious to learn and be prepared to identify a dozen or more common ferns that call western MA home. Bring your camera and sketchbook and ready to learn about botany, ecology and local habitats that host New England ferns. This will be an outdoor discovery event for all ages. Meet in the parking lot across from 153 Montague Road. Shutesbury, MA (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 10am-12pm
CREATIVE-FREE PLAY/FAIRY HOUSES
Building fairy houses is a fun activity which gets kids engaging in citizen science, and creative free play. Children ages 4 and up, and their caregivers, can enjoy a morning of outdoor fairy-themed activities at Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center. Families will play games, build fairy houses, launch fairy boats, and read fairy stories. This outdoor activity intersects with literacy and creativity. To read more about the embedded learning involved in building fairy houses, read our post: Building Fairy Houses Promotes Learning, Creative-Free Play & Citizen Science. Register by calling 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA. (<$).

Saturday, July 23, 10:30am
FAMILY THEATER
Frog and Toad is a classic story of friendship which has remained relatively popular for children since its publication in 1970. The tales from the Frog and Toad books have been adapted for screen and stage, and soon the production, A Year With Frog and Toad, will be coming to New Century Theater. This musical adaptation will feature a score by Robert Reale. Call the box office for tickets: 413-585-3220.122 Green Street. Northampton, MA. (call for pricing)

Saturday, July 23, 10:30am
COOPERATIVE PLAY/GAMES
Games of all kinds help kids understand sets of rules. Trevor the Games Man will encourage co-operative play in his game-based show at the Odyssey Bookshop. This family-friendly performance will involve ribbon dancing, stilts, and aerial tricks. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 10:30am-11:45am
YOGA
The potential benefits of yoga, including pain relief, relaxation, strength, and flexibility, attract people from many walks of life. This yoga class, running on Saturdays through August 20th, will have the added benefit of supporting placemaking and local history learning- as it will take place in the garden at the Emily Dickinson Museum. Visit the museum website for more information including a full price breakdown. In the event of inclement weather, class will be cancelled. Cancellations will be posted on the EDM Facebook page by 9am on the day of class. 413-542-2947. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (Drop in class $)

Saturday, July 23, 10:30am-12:30pm
MAKERSPACE/3D PRINTING
The innovative manufacturing technology of 3D printers is frequently utilized by libraries who want to boost the creative power of their makerspace clubs and events. The Sunderland Public Library will be hosting a Makerspace Party for ages eight through fourteen. There will be demonstrations and participants will have the chance to use a 3D printer to create models, toys, bracelets, and more. Space is limited. Please call 413-665-2642 to register. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 10am-5pm
POTTERY/PLACEMAKING
Pottery has been a part of human civilizations around the world ever since the Neolithic era – which was over 10,000 years ago! Much more than just a means of making dishes, pottery serves as a creative outlet for many artists, and the slow development of the art and technology surrounding pottery speaks volumes to the changes that human civilization has undergone, both long ago and more recently. The 10th annual Hilltown Six Pottery Tour offers families the opportunity to visit potters’ studios, see their work, learn about the process of creating pottery, and ask questions. Visit nine studios across Western Massachusetts. Go to the website for a map and full schedule of events on this self-guided tour. Hampshire, Franklin, and Berkshire county, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 11am, 12noon & 1pm
LIVING HISTORY
Join Enchanted Circle Theater and The Trustees at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead for a unique living history experience! A Fiery and Still Voice: William Cullen Bryant at Home is a site-based history play where past and present converge to bring the Homestead to life! This is a play about love, passion and social justice. Audience travels through several rooms in the house as well as outdoors. Tickets are limited, so be sure to reserve in advance. 413-532-1631 x 3110. 207 Bryant Road. Cummington, MA ($)

Saturday, July 23, 11am-5pm
TRANSPORTATION HISTORY
How did people work, live and travel in the early 1900’s? Step back in time at the Shelburne Falls Trolley Museum as they celebrate their annual TrolleyFest! TrolleyFest will host hands-on activities like cider pressing, butter making, weaving, and toolmaking. There will also be blacksmithing demonstrations, Trolley Era reenactors, live music trolley rides, and more. Families can learn about local history and the American Trolley Era while experiencing some aspects of day-to-day life of this time period. 413-625-9443. 14 Depot St. Shelburne Falls, MA (>$)

Saturday, July 23, 1pm
LANGUAGE ARTS/WRITING
Writing is a great way for teens and preteens to express their emotions, open up their creative side, and share their ideas with others in an articulate manner. Local author Joan Embree will be running this workshop at the Stockbridge Library. She will offer inspiring ideas for budding writers in grades five and up. Registration is recommended by calling 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 1:30am and 1pm
YOUTH THEATER/AESOP’S FABLES
The 2016 season of PaintBox includes one of Aesop’s age old fables. In The Great Race of the Tortoise and the Hare, children will learn the concepts of persistence, the important moral lesson about goals and actions, and how “slow and steady” really can win the race. Welcome to The International Raceway where this competition between the Tortoise and the Hare is taking place. There will surely be lots of cheering and excitement from the audience as they witness one of the greatest races of all time! Performances will be held at The Williston Theater at The Williston School. 18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA. ($)

Saturday, July 23, 12pm-6pm
PLACEMAKING/AFRICAN AMERICAN
Come help celebrate African American culture at the 43rd annual “Gather-In,” in Durant Park, a free neighborhood festival. Organized by the Berkshire County chapter of the NAACP, this free, fun-filled community event for all ages celebrates the rich cultural traditions and deep roots of the African-American community in Berkshire County and is open to everyone. There will be games, activities, music, food, and a free children’s raffle for bikes. The second annual Jahda Classic Basketball Tournament will be held during the Gather-In. For more information call 413-464-9060. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE admission. MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, July 23, 2pm & 5pm
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/VOLUNTEERING
Did you know that the Appalachian Trail runs through the Berkshires, starting in Georgia and ending in Maine. Come celebrate Great Barrington’s connection with the Appalachian Trail. Volunteer, hike, and picnic with A.T. maintainers and hikers during their Community Celebration: Hikes & Community Picnic. Great Barrington, MA (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 2pm-4pm
THEATER/SHAKESPEARE
Acting in a play is a fun way for young people to develop confidence, public speaking skills, collaborative experience, and in some cases, literary or historical knowledge. Pelham Players, the Pelham Library’s resident youth summer theater, a group of actors between the ages of five and fifteen, will perform A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Pelham Elementary School. All are welcome to attend. 413-253-0657. 45 Amherst Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 3pm and 7:30pm
DANCE/CHOREOGRAPHY
Paul Taylor is a dance choreographer whose work includes Duet (1952) and Aureole (1962). Paul Taylor continues to shape the American art of modern dance. The Paul Taylor dance company will be performing at Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center on Friday, July 22 and Saturday, July 23. For tickets, call the box office at 413-528-0100 or purchase them online on the Mahaiwe website. 14 Castle Street. Great Barrington, MA. ($)

Saturday, July 23, 3pm and 8pm
WORLD PREMIERE/SCI-FI COMEDY THRILLER
Obie Award-winner James Macdonald directs The Chinese Room, a sci-fi comedy thriller by Irish playwright Michael West. A visionary in the field of artificial intelligence, Frank has built a humandroid to preserve his wife Lily’s memory – because she is losing hers. But when he is ousted from the company he founded, he must race to save his life’s work. As Frank scrambles to protect his property, his legacy and the technology he invented, The Chinese Room
encourages audiences to examine how far we will go to preserve what we love. Performances will be held on the Nikos Stage at the ’62 Center for Theatre and Dance. 413-597-3400. 1000 Main Street, Williamstown, MA. ($$$)

Saturday, July 23, 6:15pm
DANCE STUDIES/CHOREOGRAPHY
Dance and choreography can be a hobby, an interest, or a career. People of all ages can enjoy a dance performance or engage in dance themselves. Jacob’s Pillow Dance hosts, free “Inside/Out” performances on an outdoor stage, the Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space, providing families with the chance to see professional choreography. Saturdays, July 23, and 30th, you can witness performances by dancers in the Contemporary Program of The School at Jacob’s Pillow. These will be contemporary variations coached by program director Milton Myers and esteemed faculty member and Colombo-Belgian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. In case of rain the performance will be moved indoors. All ages are invited. 413-243-9919. 358 George Carter Road. Becket, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, July 23, 8pm
THEATER/PUPPETRY
The performance, When I Put on Your Glove, explores themes of belonging, childhood, and fear of loss, all through the use of puppetry. The show has traveled around the world and been performed in three languages, by Eric Bass. Now, he passes his legacy on to his daughter, Shoshanna Bass. Shoshana is an interdisciplinary performing artist, with a background in physical theater, dance and circus. See the performance as it takes on new meanings through a new performer. For more information, check the Ko Festival of Performance website. Holden Theater. Amherst College. 220 South Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. ($$)

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Sunday, July 23, 2016

Ongoing Sunday Events

Hilltown Family Variety Show7-8am – FAMILY RADIO: Valley Free Radio (WXOJ-LP 103.3FM Northampton, MA) airs encores of 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 9 years of archived shows.

Sunday, July 23, 9am-3pm
LOCAL HISTORY/WOMEN’S HISTORY
Motorcycle manufacturing and riding is part of Springfield history. This history will be celebrated at the 7th Annual Indian Motorcycle Day at the Springfield Museums. You will see classic Springfield-built Indians, browse vendor booths, and mingle with motorcycle fans from around the country. This year’s Indian Day will pay tribute to Augusta and Adeline Van Buren in honor of the 100th anniversary of their historic cross-country ride. The celebration is free with museum admission. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Sunday, July 23, 10am-5pm
POTTERY/PLACEMAKING
Pottery has been a part of human civilizations around the world ever since the Neolithic era – which was over 10,000 years ago! Much more than just a means of making dishes, pottery serves as a creative outlet for many artists, and the slow development of the art and technology surrounding pottery speaks volumes to the changes that human civilization has undergone, both long ago and more recently. The 10th annual Hilltown Six Pottery Tour offers families the opportunity to visit potters’ studios, see their work, learn about the process of creating pottery, and ask questions. Visit nine studios across Western Massachusetts. Go to the website for a map and full schedule of events on this self-guided tour. Hampshire, Franklin, and Berkshire county, MA

Sunday, July 23, 1pm
YOUTH THEATER/AESOP’S FABLES
The 2016 season of PaintBox includes one of Aesop’s age old fables. In The Great Race of the Tortoise and the Hare, children will learn the concepts of persistence, the important moral lesson about goals and actions, and how “slow and steady” really can win the race. Welcome to The International Raceway where this competition between the Tortoise and the Hare is taking place. There will surely be lots of cheering and excitement from the audience as they witness one of the greatest races of all time! Performances will be held at The Williston Theater at The Williston School. 18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA. ($)

Sunday, July 24, 1pm-4pm
CULTURE STUDIES/MUSIC STUDIES
Learn about Spanish culture through a performance of classical and flamenco guitar. In conjunction with the Clark Art Institute’s current exhibition, Splendor, Myth, and Vision: Nudes from the Prado, the museum is hosting educational events for families on Sundays in July and August 2016. On July 24th you can attend this performance by Jason and Elysa Hochman, the elite musical couple behind Rumba Flamenca and co-founders of the New York Guitar Academy for free with museum admission. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. ($. Under 18, students with valid ID, and museum members, FREE)

Sunday, July 24, 2pm-4pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Historical societies draw people together who have an interest in preservation of the past. This Buckland Historical Society open house will offer tours of the Museum and the Wilder Homestead. The Museum is a former school house which now houses three floors of artifacts and town records. The Wilder Homestead is a furnished 1775 saltbox with five fireplaces, a 1779 English barn with antique barn loom, and a shoemaker shop (Rt. 112). 413-625-9763. 20 Upper Street. Buckland Center, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, July 24, 2pm-4pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Video games? Television? View-Masters? No. Not yet. Take a step back in time to the late 1800s at the Westhampton Museum & Blacksmith Shop to see some really basic entertainment. Stereoscope viewers were all the rage and those fortunate enough to own them planned parties around showing their newly arrived images. The ruins of Athens and Scottish castles were very popular themes, but local images such as those taken of the aftermath of the 1874 Mill River Flood also quickly made their way to the western Mass. marketplace. After a few weeks, friends, cousins and neighbors would swap collections for some variety. Come to the museum and see what you can see through their stereoscope viewer! 413-527-3209. 5 Stage Rd. Westhampton, MA (FREE)

Sunday, July 24, 4pm
THEATER/PUPPETRY
The performance, When I Put on Your Glove, explores themes of belonging, childhood, and fear of loss, all through the use of puppetry. The show has traveled around the world and been performed in three languages, by Eric Bass. Now, he passes his legacy on to his daughter, Shoshanna Bass. Shoshana is an interdisciplinary performing artist, with a background in physical theater, dance and circus. See the performance as it takes on new meanings through a new performer. For more information, check the Ko Festival of Performance website. Holden Theater. Amherst College. 220 South Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. ($$)

Sunday, July 24, 6pm
LAWN CONCERT/PLACEMAKING
Ellis plays original compositions of music which are part folk, part country, part pop. You can hear her perform in Energy Park. Rain location is The Arts Block. Bring a lawn chair, or a blanket and a picnic! 413-772-1553, 50 Miles Street. Greenfield, MA. (DONATION)

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Monday, July 25, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Monday, July 25, 10:30am-11:30am
NATURE STUDIES/OUTDOOR ADVENTURES
Do your kids love exploring the backyard? You can help them explore beyond their close surroundings and encourage an interest in nature studies. Young naturalists ages 8-11 are invited to become Junior Rangers at the Great Falls Discovery Center. This four-part nature education workshop, running July 25-August 15th, will teach children about their local habitat. Kids will become experts on the Connecticut River Watershed, and have the chance to earn a Junior Ranger Patch from Mass Parks. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Monday, July 25, 11am
NATURE STUDIES/CRAFTS
Nature is a beautiful inspiration for artistic creation. In this program at the Cushman Library, participants will walk around Cushman Park, gathering bits of nature to use in the creation of sun prints. These blue, “cameraless photos” are made by placing objects on special paper and exposing the paper to sunlight. Sun prints are also part of photographic history, and creating them could potentially spark an interest in this history. 413-648-5402. 28 Church Street. Bernardston, MA. (FREE)

Monday, July 25, 1:30-2:30pm
LITERACY
All across the country in libraries, schools, museums and other spaces, educators have been bringing in therapy dogs to help children with literacy skills. Children are invited to read to the dogs, providing a stress free reading experience so that reading is purely fun! Children ages 4-11 are invited to do so at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. Call 413-559-6307 to register. Space is limited. This program is free with museum admission. 125 West Bay Road. Amherst, MA. (<$)

Monday, July 25, 5:30pm-6:30pm
STEM/PROGRAMMING
ScratchJr is a great tool for getting even young children involved in coding. With Scratch, kids can make their own games and stories by controlling how characters move, jump, dance, and sing! In this Holyoke Codes program, children ages five through seven will learn how to make a simple game. Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center. 413- 552-4900. 100 Bigelow Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Monday, July 25, 6pm
BELLY DANCING
Exercise is an integral part of holistic health, and it is easier to exercise once you find an activity you enjoy for its own sake. A Middle East folk dance and a performance art, belly dancing has it’s roots as a social dance. Join the Crescent Dancers for a lesson of belly dancing at the East Longmeadow Public Library. All ages are welcome and no experience is required. Belly dancing could become part of your exercise routine! 413-525-5432. 60 Center Square. East Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Monday, July 25, 6:30pm-7:30pm
ARCHAEOLOGY/DINOSAURS
Western Massachusetts’ natural history is one of epic proportions – dinosaurs loved our local landscape! And lots of kids find dinosaurs fascinating because of their extinction, their unusual appearance, and their massive size. Youth ages five and up are invited to the M.N. Spear Memorial Library to help excavate dinosaur fossils! Learn about fossils and their relationship to the study of dinosaurs and other species. 413-259-1213. 10 Cooleyville Road. Shutesbury, MA. (FREE)

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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Tuesday, July 26, 10am-2pm
LITERACY/LOCAL HISTORY
Best known for his invented words, imaginary animals, and silly yet thought provoking plots, Dr. Seuss is one of the most well-known children’s authors of all time. Two of his books rank amongst the 20 best-selling children’s books ever. A native of western Massachusetts, Dr. Seuss drew upon his surroundings in order to create images for his stories. “Celebrate Dr. Seuss Day” at the Springfield Museums with feature musical performances, a meet and greet with characters, acrobatics by the Boston Circus Guild, face painting and more. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (Museum admission $. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Tuesday, July 26, 11am-12pm
ORNITHOLOGY/BIRDS OF PREY
Often, in Western Massachusetts, you can glance up at the sky and find a red-tailed hawk soaring above. Hawks and other raptors live throughout the Pioneer Valley, but face threats due to human activities. Come to the the Hatfield Public Library to learn more about predatory birds at this presentation by internationally renowned raptor rehabilitator Tom Ricardi. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, July 26, 3pm
STEM/ELECTRONICS
Have your children ever experimented with “LittleBits?” LittleBits are easy-to-use electronic building blocks. They are a great, fun tool for getting kids to think inventively. Lots of things can be created with LittleBits, including a remote controlled car! No soldering or wiring is required. This program is for youth ages five and up. Erving Public Library. 413-423-3348. 17 Moore Street. Erving, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, July 26, 3pm
IMPROV COMEDY
Improvised performances require collaboration and creativity. Improvisers must think on their feet and successful performances can boost self esteem. As part of Camp Odyssey at the Odyssey Bookshop, youth ages six and up are invited to an improv workshop with local authors Lisa Papademetriou and Molly B. Burnham. Registration is required at least two days prior to the event. 413-534-7307. 9 College Street. South Hadley, MA. (<$)

Tuesday, July 26, 6pm
LAWN CONCERT/PLACEMAKING
Singer-songwriter Bernice Lewis plays folk music for people of all ages. She has performed festivals, concert halls, coffeehouses, colleges, and house concerts and released half a dozen albums, in addition to being featured on NPR. You can see her perform live as part of the Summer Concert series at the Clark Art Institute. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, July 26, 6:30pm-8pm
NUTRITION
Fresh fruits and vegetables are an integral part of any healthy diet. Unfortunately, fruits and vegetables spoil quickly. This workshop at the River Valley Co Op will teach participants techniques for canning and preserving their fruits and vegetables. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, July 26, 8pm
ASTRONOMY
An interest in studying astronomy can develop from an interest in mathematical calculation, or a simple appreciation for the beauty of the sky. Observing the stars can be an act of scientific or spiritual curiosity, or both. Once again, the Old Hopkins Observatory at Williams College is opening for the summer and offering free shows for the public. The Hopkins Observatory, built in 1836-38 by the first professor of astronomy at Williams College, Albert Hopkins, is the oldest extant observatory in the United States. Shows will take place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 8 p.m: 26, 28; and August 2 and 4. Reservations are recommended. Call 597-2188. 829 Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Wednesday, July 27, 11am
CIRCUS ARTS
For families, circus arts can become an intergenerationally shared interest. Performing as part of a group encourages a sense of community and collaboration. You can get inspired to learn circus arts by attending Ed Popielarczyk’s “Flea Circus” at the Chesterfield Public Library. His whimsical act is an entire circus, in miniature! This performance is a great opportunity for young children, and their caregivers, who are interested in circus arts. 413-96-4735. 408 Main Road. Chesterfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 2pm-3:20pm
ANIMAL STUDIES/FILM STUDIES
It is widely known that chimpanzees are humans’ closest living relatives, and that they are highly intelligent beings. You and your child can learn about our closest relative at a screening of the Disneynature film, Chimpanzee. This screening at the Springfield Museums is part of the ongoing Summer Spectacular Family Series and is free with museum admission. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 2:30pm-4pm
ART STUDIES/FIGURE DRAWING
Figure drawing is a fundamental skill for artists. This type of drawing can be intimidating for beginners, and it is easier to execute with a real model for reference. The Clark Art Institute will be offering the rare opportunity of casual, drop in, figure drawing sessions, to take place on Wednesday afternoons, through August 31. All skill levels are invited to try it out and gather inspiration from the work on view: “Splendor, Myth, and Vision: Nudes from the Prado.” 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. ($. Under 18 and museum members FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 3pm-4pm
MAKERSPACE/CRAFT
A lot of teens love decorating their rooms and other household spaces. Decorating your room can be an enjoyable form of self-expression which you get to see every day. This program at the Hatfield Public Library will provide materials and instruction to make decor, with dowels, feathers, and yarn. Get creative and inspire each other. 413-247-9097. 39 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 5:30pm-7:30pm
STEM/ROBOTICS
Robotics is a fascinating branch of engineering and computer science which applies these skills in order to create robots. These robots can be made purely for fun, for some practical purpose, and even for artistic purposes. Wednesdays in July, Holyoke Codes will be running a Robotics Lab, creating Artbots. Artbots are robots that involve artistic design or sculptures that include interactive parts. Learn about cause and effect, computer science, engineering, and flex your creativity. This workshop will take place at the Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center. 413- 552-4900. 100 Bigelow Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 6pm
CEMETERY STUDIES/HISTORY
Studying the evolution of gravestones over the centuries can provide insight into changes which have been made in industry and production techniques. Bob Drinkwater, local anthropologist, will present “Pioneer Valley Gravestones: Circa 1650-Present” at the Greenfield Public Library. His talk will focus on the time when gravestones were locally produced from local materials. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 6pm
MUSIC STUDIES/COWBOY MUSIC
You can learn about history through music at the Whately Library! Sugarloaf Stringband is a five piece, acoustic group who will be playing cowboy music from the 1800 and 1900’s on a variety of instruments. Learn about music history and hear some songs which have influenced the genre of country music. 413-665-2170. 202 Chestnut Plain Road. Whately, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 6pm-8pm
CREATIVE FREE PLAY
Pop-up playground adventures encourage not only creative free play but collaborating among young people. Provided with huge cardboard boxes, tubes, fabric, string, bales of hay, and other items, children will design their own playground and direct their play within it. This event encourages children to get outside and shows them that their creativity can be implemented to turn an ordinary stretch of grass into a playground! The most engaged age range for this program is roughly ages three through eleven. For more information, check The Play Workshop website. 413-588-2208. Maine’s Field. 550 Riverside Drive. Florence, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, July 27, 8pm
FILM STUDIES/TEAMWORK
The 1992 film A League of Their Own (rated PG) tells the fictional story of an all women’s baseball team. Based on the 1940s All-American Girls League, this 1992 film demonstrates the strength of teamwork often associated with sports. Families can view this film as part of Cinema Northampton’s outdoor summer film series. 550 Riverside Drive. Florence, MA. (FREE)

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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Thursday, July 28, 11:30am-3pm
ART STUDIES/MUSEUM ADVENTURES
Collaborative artwork is a tool for inspiration and growth among individual artists. This pop up outdoor art museum at the Springfield Museums invites anyone and everyone to contribute their creative vision. Come check out the artistic styles of friends, neighbors, and community members and draw inspiration from what you see at the museum. This program is included in the cost of admission. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 3pm-4pm
STEM/3D PRINTING
3D printing, a type of industrial robot which can synthesize three dimensional objects for a variety of purposes, is one of the most exciting technological, scientific, and creative innovations of recent years. Patrons ages 12-18 can come to the Berkshire Athenaeum to learn how to use a 3D printer. They will be printing the logos of their favorite sports team, in conjunction with the fitness themed summer reading program. 413-499-9480. 1 Wendell Avenue. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 5:30pm-8pm
LAWN CONCERT/PLACEMAKING
Come to Kendrick Park to hear two local music groups. Carinae will play their original rock while Spirit Ghost will play their ballads and surf pop music. Check the Amherst BID website for more information. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 6pm-8:30pm
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/SERVICE-BASED LEARNING
Invasive species grow and spread across habitats at an extremely fast rate and pose a threat to other species. Help save the biodiversity of the Connecticut River by volunteering to hand pull water chestnut with staff from Northfield Mountain and the Connecticut River Watershed Council. This educational volunteer opportunity will also involve paddling on the river. Meet at the Barton Cove Canoe and Kayak Rental Area. Register by calling 1-800-859-2960. Gill, MA. (VOLUNTEER)

Thursday, July 28, 6:30pm
YO YO/PHYSICS
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. Seemingly moved by magic, the yo-yo is little more than a well-designed tool to demonstrate basic principles of physics. Eric Koloski, 2008 National Yo-Yo Champion, will do a yo-yo demonstration and class at the Pelham Library. You can learn tricks with this classic toy. 413-253-0657. 2 South Valley Road. Pelham, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 6:30-7:30pm
MUSIC STUDIES/UKULELE
Ukuleles are a great introductory instrument. They are relatively simple, with only four strings, and they are light and portable. This makes it easy to get a practice session going. Anyone interested in learning to play the ukulele is invited to the Erving Public Library
If you do not own a ukulele, register early to reserve a ukulele to play during the lesson. There is a limited number. 413-423-3348. 17 Moore Street. Erving, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 6:30pm-8pm
CHEMISTRY
Dry ice, the solid form of carbon dioxide, has practical, aesthetic, and educational uses. Dry ice has an unusual appearance which can spark an interest in learning the chemistry behind the substance. Changes in matter are an important, basic concept for chemistry learning. Youth are invited to the Westhampton Public Library to learn about chemistry and dry ice through storytelling. 413-527-5386. 1 North Road. Westhampton, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, July 28, 8pm
ASTRONOMY
An interest in studying astronomy can develop from an interest in mathematical calculation, or a simple appreciation for the beauty of the sky. Observing the stars can be an act of scientific or spiritual curiosity, or both. Once again, the Old Hopkins Observatory at Williams College is opening for the summer and offering free shows for the public. The Hopkins Observatory, built in 1836-38 by the first professor of astronomy at Williams College, Albert Hopkins, is the oldest extant observatory in the United States. Shows will take place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 8 p.m.: July 28; and August 2 and 4. Reservations are recommended. Call 597-2188. 829 Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, July 29, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Friday, July 29, 10am
PLACEMAKING/CULTURE STUDIES
Celebrate Jewish culture at a “Shabbat Shabloom” gathering! Fridays until late August, at Abundance Farm, families will gather for music. Felicia Sloin and Amy Meltzer lead a musical performance especially for young children, encouraging participation and movement. Families are invited to tour the farm, sample what is in season, and take home flowers. 253 Prospect Street. Northampton, MA. (DONATION)

Friday, July 29, 10am-11am
MUSIC/NATURE STUDIES
“Annie and the Natural Wonder Band” plays children’s music which explores various educational topics. This performance, “On Safari,” will take kids on a nature studies adventure where they will encounter tons of exotic animals. This event in Stanley Park combines music, dance, animal studies, and placemaking into one! This show is especially appropriate for children between the ages of three and seven. 413-568-9312. 400 Western Avenue. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 10:30am
FUSED GLASS/JEWELRY MAKING
‘Fused glass’ is glass that has been fired or heat-processed in a kiln, allowing it to be altered for artistic purposes. Deenie Pacik will be at the Holyoke Public Library teaching young adults how to create Dichroic fused glass pendants. 413-420-8101. 250 Chestnut Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 11am
FAIRY TALES/MARIONETTES
Watch the Tanglewood Marionettes bring the story of Cinderella to life through a highly skilled performance, hand crafted puppets, and a colorful set in the shape of a storybook. This show hosted by the Springfield Museums. This could be a great introduction to the classical story of Cinderella. For those who already know the story, Tanglewood Marionettes are sure to provide an interesting new representation of the characters. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. ($. Ages 3-17 <$. Children under two FREE)

Friday, July 29, 5pm
WATER SKIING/PHYSICS
Even just balancing on two skis in the water is impressive. But the Oxbow Water Ski Show Team can do much more than that, with pyramids 3-4 people high, flips through the air and other tricks. Come see what they, and other teams, can do at this Eastern regional water ski show. In addition to being dazzled and entertained, integrate the excitement into learning about physics by thinking deeply about water skiing and certain concepts of physics, including Newtown’s Third Law of Motion, Reynolds number, and gravity. The competition will take place on July 29th, 30th, and 31st. 413-626-1913. Oxbow Marina. 180 Island Road. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 5pm-7pm
PLACEMAKING/LOCAL HISTORY
Looking at local landmarks through a lens of literary history allows you to see how much has, and has not, changed. The Emily Dickinson Museum is a local resource for understanding Dickinson’s poetry, and the history of Amherst. The museum invites you to a free picnic under the oak tree, where you will hear music performed by 18-year-old Conor Ritchie-Dunham. Employees from The Center will be present and available to discuss their offerings. 413-542-2947. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 5:30pm
PLACEMAKING/LAWN CONCERT
Chesterwood is a National Historic Landmark and museum of Daniel Chester’s work. Daniel Chester is considered America’s foremost sculptor of public monuments and best known for the seated figure of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial. You can make a full day trip to Chesterwood to see the museum, and hear live music! If you just wish to come for the music, the grounds open at 5pm and performances start at 6pm. Bring a lawn chair or a blanket and listen to country rock music by Moot Davis. Rain or shine. 413-298-3579. 4 Williamsville Road. Stockbridge, MA. (<$ for concert)

Friday, July 29, 5:30pm-6:30pm
STAND UP COMEDY/SOCIOLOGY
Kelsey Flynn is a stand up comedian and improvisor. Her comedic performance, “Put Down The Phone, Pick Up Your Power,” will explore the challenges of living in a constantly plugged-in, digital world. As a parent, Flynn discusses these matters as they relate to balancing work and time spent with her kids. All are welcome to attend this program at the Forbes Library 413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 6pm-7pm
GUIDED WALK
The new Mutter’s Field Accessible Trail provides outdoor recreation access for people of all abilities! Join Marty Klein from the Pascommuck Conservation Trust for a walking tour and conversation about the new Mutter’s Field Accessible Trail. Wear your walking shoes and meet us at the trail opening. Call the Easthampton Public Library at 413-527-1031 for more information. East Green Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Friday, July 29, 7pm
YOUTH THEATER/AESOP’S FABLES
The 2016 season of PaintBox includes one of Aesop’s age old fables. In The Great Race of the Tortoise and the Hare, children will learn the concepts of persistence, an important moral lesson about goals and actions, and how “slow and steady” really can win the race. Welcome to The International Raceway where this competition between the Tortoise and the Hare is taking place. There will surely be lots of cheering and excitement from the audience as they witness one of the greatest races of all time! Performances will be held at The Williston Theater at The Williston School. 18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA. ($)

Friday, July 29, 8pm
THEATER
Post-show discussions and small-venue theater performances allow audiences to learn a lot about what goes into a show, from writing and stage direction, to casting, directing and performing. Everett Company’s performance of Freedom Project will feature a post-show “Freedom Cafe,” offering the opportunity to discuss the crisis of mass incarceration. Freedom Project is a multimedia physical theater piece that interweaves gripping personal stories, evocative imagery, and athletic choreography in an examination of mass incarceration in America. For more information, check the Ko Festival of Performance website. Holden Theater. Amherst College. 220 South Pleasant Street. Amherst, 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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1 Comment

  1. homeshuling said,

    July 25, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    This week Shabbat Shabloom welcomes special guest Mister G, who will be singing a song from his album “The Mitzvah Bus”

    Like


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