Suggested Events for October 1st-7th, 2016

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

“My family recently relocated to Western MA. Hilltown Families has been an invaluable resource for learning about our new community and introducing it’s rich culture to us… Hilltown Families is a wonderful resource and my family is extremely grateful as it has made a huge difference in helping us to establish our new roots.” – Adam Brisben (Northampton, MA)

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

Enhanced PublicityServing Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families supports development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, individuals, schools and non-profits are encouraged to partner with Hilltown Families through sponsorship and advertising. Let us help get the word out about your after-school/homeschool class, event, camp, workshop, fundraiser, business/school, service, open house, volunteer opportunity or general announcement. Deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA while supporting the community development work of Hilltown Families! Click HERE to find out more.

Featured Fall Classes in Western MA

What are your child’s interests? What are your interests? This fall there are a number of after-school, homeschool, evening, and weekend classes to choose from to supplement and support the interests of your family! Check out our growing list of classes, programs, open houses and even auditions for this fall in our dedicated post, 2016 Fall Classes, Auditions & Open Houses in Western MA, and find the perfect activity for your child, teen, and even lifelong learners! — Have a class you’d like to add to this list? Click here to find out how to have your class, lessons, program, auditions, and open house included.

Bulletin Board

Oct 1

Harvest Day Open House at The Hartsbrook School, Saturday, October 1, 10am-12noon. Join the festivities and learn more about The Hartsbrook School, and the Land Stewardship Program. Take a workshop in beekeeping, seed saving and fiber arts. Meet the animals that live on the farm. Explore the gardens, woods, streams and fields that the students care for, work on and learn about. This event is for current families and those wishing to learn more about the school. A bountiful, locally grown snack will be served! Experience Hartsbrook’s rich, hands-on curriculum firsthand and imagine the possibilities for your child. The Hartsbrook School is located at 193 Bay Rd. in Hadley. For more info call 413-586-1908 or visit online at www.hartsbrook.org.

Oct 7

Connecticut Trolley Museum will hold their Pumpkin Patch event starting Oct 7 and will run the rest of the month every Fri, Sat & Sun including Monday, Oct 10 for Columbus Day. Pumpkin Patch is a family fun filled adventure where you ride on a trolley car out to the pumpkin patch and each child can pick out a free pumpkin. Additionally, when you return back to the Museum you can decorate the pumpkins, get your face painted & enjoy the outside play area with spooktacular Halloween activities. Don’t forget you can take as many Trolley rides as you would like. Visit www.ct-trolley.org for hours of operation. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors, $8 for youth (ages 2-12) and $3 for child (under age 2). East Windsor, CT.

Oct 2

The 55th Annual Conway Festival of the Hills is on Sunday, October 2 from 10am-4pm, rain or shine. Enjoy live music, the famed “skillet toss,” craft fair, parade, log splitting contest, art, blacksmithing, weaving, local products, and of course, yummy food, freshly pressed cider and fried dough with maple cream! For the kids, a hay maze, hill slide, children’s book signing, and lots of free activities. Sign up for the Covered Bridge Classic or Kids Fun Run! The festival is located in historic Conway center, Route 116, 8 minutes from Route 91 in Deerfield. Admission, parking, and almost all activities are free. See www.festivalofthehills.com for details.

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, 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.

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
October 1-7, 2016

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

Donate Now Events Happening in the Hilltowns

Saturday, October 1, 2016

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. Explore the joys of autumn with guest DJ Lucy Kalantari. With music spanning decades from the 1930s to the present she includes the voices of Ella Fitzgerald, Earth, Wind & Fire, The White Stripes, Joanie Leeds, Mister G, and many more. Everyone has something to say about autumn. 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, October 1,
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/GUIDED NATURE WALKS
This September and October, Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more! Paddling trips, self-guided tours, and craft projects will allow people of all ages to connect with their community through a greater sense of place. Visit the Housatonic Heritage website for more information. Registration is required. Email berkshires@massaudubon.org or call 413-637-0320. Lenox and Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 8am
FITNESS/PLACEMAKING
Competitive running events don’t have to be about competition. Sometimes they can just be a way to exercise as a family, or as a community, and to explore new terrain. The first-ever 5K Trailblazer Run at the Clark Art Institute is a great way to explore the Clark’s campus trails and the interconnected trails maintained by the town of Williamstown. This event is open to runners and walkers of all ages and abilities. This event is also a way to take a closer look at Stone Hill, the focus of the Clark’s current exhibition: Sensing Place: Reflecting on Stone Hill, open through October 10, 2016. To register call Berkshire Running Center at 413 344 4472. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. ($$; ages ten and under FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 9am-12pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/SALE & SWAP
The Northampton Reuse Committee’s Autumn Community Tag Sale and Swap brings together a large number of community members who are interested in selling their goods. The entire community is welcome to browse, and purchase during the event. Clothes, toys, school supplies, furniture, accessories- all types of items will be available to browse in the Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School rear parking lot. The rain date for the event is October 8. 80 Locust Street. Northampton, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 9am-1pm
FARMERS’ MARKET
Farmers’ markets offer a consistent, simple way for local farmers and food producers to connect with the community. This special North Adams Farmers Market invites you to bring your dog to the market! Vendors will include animal rescue agencies and animal-themed products. Call 413-664-6180 for more information. To support more local makers, you can also stop by the Fall Foliage Craft Fair on Main Street from 9am-3pm. The farmers’ market will be set up in the St. Anthony Municipal Parking Lot. Intersection of Route 88/Marshall Street/Saint Anthony Drive. North Adams, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, October 1, 9am-2pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/BOOK SALE
Fans of public libraries know the joy of sharing knowledge in the form of free, borrowed books. Sometimes, though, it can be nice to own a book. You may want to lend it to friends, annotate it, or read it again years later. You can purchase books, and other items, to own while still supporting your public library.You can help support the Field Memorial Library by purchasing books and media at their book sale. 413- 369-4646. 16 Elm Street. Conway, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, October 1, 9:30am-12:30pm
DENDROLOGY/GEOLOGY
What do rocks and trees have to do with each other? Find out on a three mile hike of Mount Holyoke. You will learn how rocks affect trees, and how you can tell by looking at the trees what kind of rocks you might find near them. This program is appropriate for ages twelve and up. Please bring water, bug spray, and sunscreen and wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Meet at the Notch Visitor Center of Mount Holyoke Range State Park.. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 9:30am-5pm
NEW ENGLAND HISTORY
Attending an “Apple Day” at Old Sturbridge Village can teach you about local and New England history through food culture. Participants will be able to make cider and see the ox-powered Cider Mill in operation. You can learn about how varieties of apples are created, taste some nearly forgotten heirloom apple varieties, and pick your own! 800-733-1830. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. (Adult $$; 3-17 $; children age 2 and under FREE )

Saturday, October 1, 10am-11:30am
PARENT WORKSHOP/STEM
Children are natural scientists, constantly asking questions and exploring the world around them. As a parent, you can help foster this natural inquisitiveness with fun, scientific activities. This Collaborative for Educational Services workshop will have lots of things for you and your child/scientist to explore together. Child care will be available during the parent learning session, which will be followed by fun parent-child activities. Registration is required via the Collaborative website. Session will be held at the Our Lady’s Child Care Center. 413-586-4900. 51 Schoolhouse Drive. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-11:30am
ECOLOGY/LOCAL HISTORY
Western Massachusetts’ landscape is filled with rivers. Through explorations of local rivers, families can discover local ecology, connect with local history, and deepen their sense of place. Florence’s inaugural RiverWalk will teach participants about industrial activity and the abolitionist movement. The walk will be a mile and a half long, but participants are welcome to attend just for the first half mile and then return to their car. The RiverWalk will also mark the reveal of the new Florence Self-Guided Tour Brochure. The tour is limited to 20 participants. Email info@millrivergreenway.org to register. Florence, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-12pm
HARVEST CELEBRATION
Join the festivities and learn more about The Hartsbrook School, and the Land Stewardship Program. Take a workshop in beekeeping, seed saving and fiber arts. Meet the animals that live on the farm. Explore the gardens, woods, streams and fields that the students care for, work on and learn about. This event is for current families and those wishing to learn more about the school. A bountiful, locally grown snack will be served! Experience Hartsbrook’s rich, hands-on curriculum firsthand and imagine the possibilities for your child. The Hartsbrook School is located at 193 Bay Rd. in Hadley. For more info call 413-586-1908 or visit online at www.hartsbrook.org.

Saturday, October 1, 10am-12pm
GUIDED NATURE HIKE/NATURAL HISTORY
Guided hikes are a great way to learn about local, natural history while taking in the scenery and getting exercise. Basin Pond, which is a beaver pond and wetland area, has a sad history. In 1886 and 1968, attempts to dam the pond led to loss of life and significant property damage. A guide from the Berkshire Natural Resources Council will teach you about the history on this interpretive hike. Wear sturdy footwear and bring drink/snack. From the intersection of Rt 102 & Rt 20 in Lee (at exit 2 of the Mass Pike), drive east on Rt 20 for 4 miles, turn left on Becket Rd (across from LuJohn’s Auction Gallery). Drive uphill 0.3 mile to the BNRC sign/parking area for Basin Pond, on the left; or a little further up the road is a bigger parking area. Call 413-499-0596 to register. Lee, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-12pm
NATURAL SCIENCES
Understanding the basics of the scientific method opens up a world of self-directed learning. Families with children ages 6-12 are invited to Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary to explore the steps of the scientific method with lots of hands-on activities. Participants will build miniature volcanoes, create miniature dams, and do other activities while observing patterns. This program is messy; wear clothes that can get muddy! Registration is required. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-12pm
STEM/MAKERSPACE
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. Learning how to use a 3D printer is one way to support interests in engineering, technology, and even artistic creativity. This makerspace workshop at the Greenfield Public Library will feature a 3D Printer, a CNC Router, and opportunities to use many materials. This program is designed for ages 8-12. Registration is required. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-1pm
PLACEMAKING/KIDS FARMERS’ MARKET
Children’s Farmers’ Markets can teach kids financial and social skills they will use for a lifetime. The Sunderland Public Library’s Farmy Fresh and Fun Fair will include a children’s farmers’ market and a 6th grade bake sale. There will also be various activities for kids including carnival games and a bounce house. Food will be available for purchase. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-1pm
PLACEMAKING/ART STUDIES
The Clark Art Institute’s summer exhibition, Sensing Place: Reflecting on Stone Hill, honors the natural beauty of the land surrounding the museum. Now, a symposium at the museum will provide further opportunity to consider the connection between artwork and a strong connection to place. Keynote speaker Michael Goven, CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), will discuss the role of place in art, literature, philosophy, cultural geography, and environmentalism. Speakers from various disciplines and backgrounds will discuss the topic. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-1:30pm
LOCAL HISTORY/ENGINEERING
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, you can participate in a guided hike led by David Pierce. Call 413-354-7752 to register. Chester Railway Museum. 10 Prospect Street. Chester, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-1:45pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/BOOK SALE
As the seasons change, people swap out items of clothing and sometimes get rid of unwanted goods by donating them or having tag sales. Similarly, libraries often hold book sales at the beginning of Spring or Fall, selling books donated by community members. You can support th Montague Public Libraries, as well as a culture of exchange and recycling within your community, by purchasing items at the book sale. Thousands of books are available for $1 or less each. DVDs, CDs, and audiobooks are also available for $1 each. Proceeds go to the Friends, who support library programs and enhancements. Carnegie Library Branch. 201 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-2pm
MYCOLOGY
If you have not studied or thought much about fungi, you might be surprised to learn about their incredible numbers, diversity of forms, functions, usefulness and connections to human life. Mycologist Dianna Smith will be presenting a talk, and leading a guided mushroom identification walk at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary. Dianna will teach participants how to find fungi, and explain how mushrooms interact with their environment. This program is for adults. Registration is required. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. ($$)

Saturday, October 1, 10am-6pm
PLACEMAKING/LOCAL FOOD CULTURE
As the weather gets colder, it’s time to start thinking about warm recipes which provide comfort in fall and winter. The annual potato festival in Sunderland is an opportunity to support local farms and purchase fresh ingredients for your fall cooking. Meet other community members and exchange recipes as you celebrate a beloved local crop. Smiarowski Farmstand And Creamery. 413-665-3830. 320 River Road. Sunderland, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, October 1, 10:45am
HALLOWEEN/CRAFTS
It’s not too early to prepare for Halloween! Children ages four and up are invited to the Granby Library to make spooky crafts for Halloween. Use them to decorate for trick or treaters. There will be eerie music! Please register by stopping by the library or calling during open hours. 413-467-3320. 297 East State Street. Granby, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 11am-1pm
FAMILY THEATER
Theater performances can be a nice break from the ordinary for families looking for entertainment. Nutshellapalooza at Spectrum Playhouse, part of the Families First performance series, is a show which features original music, puppets and clownerie! Some memorable characters include , the Ductionary (the duck who knows every word in the English language) and the Snoof (the detective who can find anything, even if it isn’t there!) 413-394-5023. 20 Franklin Street. Lee MA. (DONATION)

Saturday, October 1, 11am-2pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/KID GEAR
As the seasons change, people often go through their wardrobes, and pick through their attic and basements, pulling out seasonal items and sometimes deciding what to donate. This open house at It Takes A Village will feature lots of free items, available to anyone in the Western Massachusetts community, including clothes newborn through kids size 8, strollers, car-seats, baby swings, diapers (cloth and disposable), sheets and blankets, shoes, toys, books, and seasonal items for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and more! 2 Main Street. Cummington, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 11am-5pm
LIVING HISTORY/WAR REENACTMENT
War reenactments are a highly engaging form of living history. For families interested in history, learning about the role citizens of your town played in various wars is one way of engaging with national history on a local level. You and your family can learn about the Civil War by attending a reenactment in Look Park. You can also hear from Shades of Gray, a civil war era camp band. 413-584-5457. 300 North Main Street. Florence, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 11:30am-12:30pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Tanglewood is an historic music venue, as well as the location for the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer academy for advanced musical study. As such, it has a rich musical history. You can join a BSO guide for a tour of the Tanglewood campus, the Koussevitzky Music Shed, and Ozawa Hall. This half mile tour will take approximately one hour. Call 617-638-9390 to register. 297 West Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 11:30am and 3:30pm
STORYTELLING
Children often enjoy the pastime of having stories told or read to them. This practice, however, also can benefit adults. We tell stories all the time as a way of sharing lessons, emotions, interests, and aspects of our personalities. You can attend storytelling sessions, for adults and children, in Park Hill Orchard. children’s storyteller and librarian from Windsor, Connecticut, Linda Marchisio will be telling stories at 11: 30 am, and Gail N. Herman will be telling for children with musical instruments and puppets at 3:30 pm. 82 Park Hill Road. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 12am-11pm
DANCE/CULTURE STUDIES
You can celebrate diversity through dance, performance, art, cuisine and more at the Harvest of Hope festival and dance party! One goal of this event is to create a greater sense of unity through the catalyst of creativity. Community members will come together to share and enjoy storytelling, collective art creation, theater arts, spoken and musical performances, a planetary puppet procession, live civic workshops, and tables held by partnering organizations and sponsors on social, economic, and environmental topics. Events will take place on The Common and at The Whitney Center for the Arts.. 413-841-0298. Pittsfield, MA. (DONATION)

Saturday, October 1, 12am-3pm
PLACEMAKING/FALL FESTIVAL
Fall festivals are a local tradition which can connect you to your town as well as New England history. The Williamstown Fall Festival will feature educational, hands-on activities including traditional shake-splitting and a cross-cut saw competition. The event, held at the 2600 acre Hopkins Forest, will also have music, apple butter and cider production, refreshments, a canopy walkway, an active honey bee hive, and children’s activities including a crafts table. For more information call 413-597-4353. Hopkins Forest. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 12pm-6pm
PLACEMAKING/PARENT’S DAY OUT
Brewing beer is a culinary art. Locally made craft beers are often unique to a particular area. The 9th Annual Berktoberfest is an opportunity to support local businesses by trying local craft beers. This event also supports local charitable organizations, Elizabeth Freeman Center and Moments House. McKay Street Lot. Downtown. Pittsfield, MA. ($$)

Saturday, October 1, 1pm
ART STUDIES
Sculptor Nancy Schön, is known for her sculptures inspired by children’s literature. You may have seen her sculpted depiction of Robert McCloskey’s Make Way for Ducklings in the Boston Public Garden or characters from A. A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh at Newton Free Library (Newton, MA). You can meet Nancy and learn about her various public art projects, which includes Boston’s first public skate park, at this lecture at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. This program is free with museum admission. 413-658-1100. 125 West Bay Road. Amherst, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 1pm-3pm
LOCAL HISTORY/RELIGIOUS STUDIES
The Shaker Trail in Hancock Massachusetts is a spiritual “feast ground” for the Shaker community, and a resource for historical learning about both the town and the Shakers. You can participate in a moderately difficult hike of significant sites including remains of mill sites, the North Family dwelling site (active from 1821-1867), and the summit of the mountain, where the Shakers held special celebratory services in the mid-19th century. Call 413-443-0188 x-0 to register. Meet at the Hancock Shaker Village Visitor Center/ticket desk. 413-443-0188. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 1pm-3:30pm and 6pm to 8pm
EN PLEIN AIR PAINTING/PLACEMAKING
Celebrate local landscapes through brand new artwork! Plein air painters are invited to depict outdoor scenes, painting from 1pm-3:30pm at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead (Cummington), Notchview (Windsor), and The Chesterfield Gorge (Chesterfield). Then, from 6pm-8pm, all artwork created will be displayed in an art show at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead. All are welcome to paint, watch the painting, or witness the final product displayed in the evening art show. A hike will also be offered for those who do not wish to paint. For more information, call the Trustees at 413-628-4485 x3. 207 Bryant Road. Cummington, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 1:30pm
NATURE STUDIES
For children, spending adequate time outdoors can be a time for exercise, imaginative play, and even appreciation of the importance of nature. Martin LeBlanc is cofounder of the Children and Nature Network and senior advisor of CN&N’s Natural Leaders network. He works to reconnect children and nature. You can hear him speak about the importance of teaching our youth to become “Natural Leaders” and stewards of the earth. The event is hosted by Oak Meadow Independent Learning, following their annual Open House, which will take place from 11am to 1pm. Both programs are free and open to the public. Brooks House. 132 Main Street. Brattleboro, VT. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 2pm
HISTORY/WAR
Opened as an arsenal to support George Washington’s troops during the Revolutionary War, the Springfield Armory served as a major arms manufacturing center for over two centuries. The Armory closed in 1968, becoming a National Historic Site which now provides opportunities to explore the intersection of local and national history. You are invited to the Springfield Armory National Historic Site to learn about the Vietnam War from a local perspective, discovering what kinds of weapons were used and seeing weapons produced by the armory. Some weapons highlighted will include: the M79 grenade launcher, the M60 machine gun, the “minigun” as well as the Eugene Stoner designed Stoner 63 (in both belt and magazine fed configurations). 413-734-8551. One Armory Square. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 2pm-3pm
LOCAL HISTORY
The Lenox Historical Commission was formed to protect historic documents and educate community members about their historical heritage. Lucy Kennedy of the commission will be teaching citizens about their heritage through highlighting historic buildings. Join her on a one mile walk and learn about the historic development of the town. Email lenoxhistory@gmail.com to register. Meet at Lenox Town Hall, 6 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 3pm-3:30pm
ZOOLOGY
What can you learn from the bones of an animal? Find out at the “Speaking with Skulls” program where you will examine the skulls of species which thrive in our local habitat. This program is approximately 20 minutes long and appropriate for all ages. Meet at the Notch Visitor Center of Mount Holyoke Range State Park.. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 4pm
HISTORY/GUIDED WALK
Accompanying fall’s spook-filled Halloween celebrations come opportunities to explore and learn about cemeteries and graveyards across western Massachusetts. Filled with stone markers that chronicle a community’s history, local cemeteries can provide visitors with a look deep into the past. The Stockbridge Library will be leading this cemetery walk, “Stories of Church Street: Home to Both Famous and Memorable.” Learn about local history through a personal lens of known and unknown local figures. 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, October 1, 4pm-8pm
PLACEMAKING/CULINARY ARTS
Cider pressing is a fun seasonal activity which connects families to local food culture and New England history. You can visit the the 100-year- old apple orchard at Naumkeag and make your own fresh batch of cider, while also enjoying live music and activities for all ages. For more information, call 413.298.3239 x3008. 5 Prospect Hill. Stockbridge, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 5pm
COMMUNITY MEAL
The First Congregational Church of Hatfield is holding their annual Chicken Barbecue! Community meals such as this are a great way to meet individuals and families who live in your area. Meals such as this bring people together around the universal need for food. The meal features authentic, wood-fired barbecue chicken and more. 413-247-9540. 41 Main Street. Hatfield, MA. ($)

Saturday, October 1, 6pm-7pm
MUSEUM ADVENTURES
There are dozens upon dozens of phobias, ranging from the common to the rare, the general to the highly specific. The Berkshire Museum’s exhibit, “Something Scary,” explores fears through artwork of various mediums. The museum provides a family friendly, somewhat wacky exploration of fears and phobias. Adding to the excitement, the museum is offering this flashlight scavenger hunt, an after-hours adventure in the dark museum with the Something Scary exhibition. Add a ticket for the Little Cinema screening of The Goonies at 7 pm. Get ready for the spooky season of autumn with this full night of spooky adventures. 413-443-7171. 39 South Street. Route 7. Pittsfield, MA. (<$)

Saturday, October 1, 7pm-9pm
STEM/ASTRONOMY
One great thing about the earlier sunsets of fall and winter is that those longer nights means more time for exploring the night sky. Amateur astronomer Rick Costello will be at the Lenox Library with his 16 inch reflecting telescope. Attendees are invited to an informative lecture, “Our place in the stars,” in the Welles Gallery, followed by an outdoor participatory viewing. Check for planets, stars, and the Orion Nebula. All ages are welcome. 413-637-0197. 18 Main Street. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

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Sunday, October 2, 2016

 

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, October 2,
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/GUIDED NATURE WALKS
This September and October, Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more! Paddling trips, self-guided tours, and craft projects will allow people of all ages to connect with their community through a greater sense of place. Visit the Housatonic Heritage website for more information. Registration is required. Email berkshires@massaudubon.org or call 413-637-0320. Lenox and Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 9am-12pm
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES
Paddling along a river gives you a different view of your environment. While paddling you move at a different speed and see from a different vantage point. Families are invited to Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary to look for signs of beavers and other wildlife while enjoying a morning paddle along the Mill Rider. You can watch for birds or just observe the fall foliage. This program is suitable for children ages 9-16. 413-584-3009. 127 Combs Road. Easthampton, MA. ($)

Sunday, October 2, 9:30am-5pm
NEW ENGLAND HISTORY
Attending an “Apple Day” at Old Sturbridge Village can teach you about local and New England history through food culture. Participants will be able to make cider and see the ox-powered Cider Mill in operation. You can learn about how varieties of apples are created, taste some nearly forgotten heirloom apple varieties, and pick your own! 800-733-1830. 1 Old Sturbridge Village Road. Sturbridge, MA. (Adult $$; 3-17 $; children age 2 and under FREE )

Sunday, October 2, 10am
ARCHAEOLOGY
It’s Massachusetts Archaeology Month! The Emily Dickinson Museum invites you to learn about archaeology, local history, and poetry through a presentation and walking tour at the museum. Learn about the work the University of Massachusetts Amherst archaeological field school has done and what they have uncovered on the grounds of the museum. No registration is required. 413-542-2947. 280 Main Street. Amherst, MA. (Members FREE; Non members <$)

Sunday, October 2, 10am-3pm
COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION/BOOK SALE
Fans of public libraries know the joy of sharing knowledge in the form of free, borrowed books. Sometimes, though, it can be nice to own a book. You may want to lend it to friends, annotate it, or read it again years later. You can purchase books, and other items, to own while still supporting your public library.You can help support the Field Memorial Library by purchasing books and media at their book sale. 413- 369-4646. 16 Elm Street. Conway, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Sunday, October 2, 10am-4pm
PLACEMAKING/AUTUMN FESTIVAL
Autumn is a time for festivals, bringing people together in celebration of beautiful weather and a bountiful fall harvest. Festival of the Hills is a family-friendly gathering featuring live music, the famed “skillet toss,” craft fair, parade, log splitting contest, art, blacksmithing, weaving, local products and food. Kids’ activities include hay maze, hill slide, children’s book signing, and more. The event will take place rain or shine. Historic Conway Center, Route 116. Conway, MA. (FREE admission and parking)

Sunday, October 2, 10am-4pm
LOCAL HISTORY/HISTORIC SCHOOLHOUSE
Historic schoolhouses allow visitors to step back in time, learning about local history as well as the evolution of education in our country. During the Festival of the Hills The Boyden Schoolhouse will be open for touring. The schoolhouse was built in 1881 and was used as a school until 1922. Later, it was used for storage, and housed a family during the Great Depression. Learn about national events through a local lens by visiting the schoolhouse and learning more. Call 413-369-4709 for more information. 24 Fournier Road. Conway, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 10am
ORNITHOLOGY/OWLS
Do your kids enjoy watching or identifying birds? You and your children can learn about the owl species that inhabit our region, then play detective and figure out what an owl ate! This program is broken into two 20 minute segments. Feel free to come for either or both. This program is appropriate for ages eight and up. Meet at the Notch Visitor Center of Mount Holyoke Range State Park.. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 11am-2pm
MUSEUM ADVENTURES
The Clark Art Institute Family Day invites people of all ages to come appreciate artwork on display, as well as making artwork of their own. Family Day offers tons of free activities in addition to touring the collection and current exhibit, Sensing Place: Reflecting on Stone Hill. There will also be poetry readings, eco art-making projects, dancing, and music. The event also marks the return of Kite Day, a Williamstown tradition. Bring a kite to fly on Stone Hill. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 12pm-6pm
LITERACY
Local writing takes many forms, not only in books, but in zines, chapbooks, minicomics, screenprints, letterpress prints. The second Northampton Print and Book fair will feature all of those forms, plus photographs, digital prints, shirts, records, and tapes, bringing people together who share an interest in the written, printed, and recorded forms. Artists, publishers, labels, editors, and distros are invited to display and sell their work at A.P.E. Gallery at 126 Main Street. For a live printmaking demonstration, BIG INK will print large­ scale woodcuts by eight artists using their one­of­a­kind giant mobile etching press in the parking lot behind Thornes Marketplace. Come learn about local writers, makers, and publishers. Northampton, MA. (MARKET/SALE

Sunday, October 2, 1pm
PARADE/PLACEMAKING
The Northern Berkshire Fall Foliage Parade is a celebration of changing seasons, fall harvest, and community. Attending the parade is a chance to appreciate the natural beauty of New England and the Berkshires. The parade is entering its 61st year. All past grand marshals are welcome to join in the parade. The parade will commence at the Ocean State Job Lots parking lot, and conclude on Ashland Street after passing through downtown via Main Street. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 1pm-2pm
STORY WALK
You and your family can celebrate fall with a StoryWalk all about apples! Dawn Marvin Ward will lead this StoryWalk of Apples A-Z at New Salem Preserves. Dress appropriately (closed toe, comfortable shoes; long pants) for adventure in the fields. StoryWalks offer a unique reading experience combined with exercise, fresh air, and socializing. Apply and bring sun/insect repellent for seasonal bugs. Contact the Community Network for Children office to register 978-544-5157. 67 South Main Street. New Salem, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 1:30pm-3pm
GUIDED NATURE WALK/LOCAL HISTORY
Historic House museums provide people with both historic objects and documents, as well as informational texts to put the objects in a personal context. Viewing history through a personalized, biographical lens, can make the information more interesting and memorable. You are invited on a guided walk of the grounds at the Keep Homestead Museum. Naturalist and educator Kevin Kopchynsk will share his knowledge of science and ecology. Afterwards you can tour the Keep Homestead Museum, exploring the antique objects and furniture collected by the Keep family who lived there for over 150 years. 413-267-4137. 35 Ely Road. Monson, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 2pm
LOCAL HISTORY/CEMETERY STUDIES
Have you ever wondered what the gravestone art in the Palmer’s cemeteries mean? This program at the Palmer Historical and Cultural Center will take you on a virtual tour of Palmer’s cemeteries through a photography exhibition by artist Terry McMaster and an illustrated lecture by popular cemetery educators The Gravestone Girls. Learn the stories behind some of the cemetery’s oldest graves. 413-289-9295. 2072 Main Street. Three Rivers, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 2pm
LAWN CONCERT/PLACEMAKING
Placemaking is a practice and a philosophy. It is an approach to both the creation and use of public spaces, aiming to promote the health and well-being of individuals and communities. Lawn concerts are one type of event which supports placemaking, by drawing people together and strengthening a connection to neighbors via community spaces. The North Adams Music Series will be running through October 16, with free live music every Sunday. Check the Levitt Foundation website for a schedule of musicians. On October 2nd, singer/songwriter Caitlin Canty will perform. Colgrove Park. 151 Kemp Avenue. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, October 2, 2pm-4pm
GUIDED NATURE WALK/ZOOLOGY
Spending time outdoors can connect us with our senses as we watch and listen to animals, and take in the smells and sensations of being in nature. Animals, too, use their senses to find food and survive. Kids ages six and up, and their caregivers, are invited to a guided hike to learn about local animals and their survival techniques. Children must be accompanied by an adult. This hike is about 2 ½ miles long, and covers easy terrain. Please bring water, bug spray, and sunscreen, and wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Meet at the Notch Visitor Center of Mount Holyoke Range State Park.. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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Monday, October 3, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Monday, October 3, 5:30pm-7:30pn
STEM/ROBOTICS
Robotics is a fascinating branch of engineering and computer science. Robots can be made purely for fun, for some practical purpose, and even for artistic purposes. This Holyoke Codes Robotics Lab, offers participants the opportunity to create robots with LEGO EV3 MINDSTORMS kits. Learn about cause and effect, computer science, and engineering while practicing your creativity. Novices are invited to come learn all about robotics, while experts are equally welcome to come and share their knowledge. Ages seven and up. 413- 552-4900. Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center. 100 Bigelow Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Monday, October 3, 6:30pm-8pm
LOCAL HISTORY/CEMETERY STUDIES
Studying cemeteries provides insight into local history, as well as broader cultural trends. The subject even intersects with an interest in art, through the practice of gravestone rubbing. The Gravestone Girls are cemetery educators, who will be presenting a virtual tour, called “Welcome to the Graveyard”, centered on Agawam’s seven local cemeteries. The presentation at the Agawam Public Library will display photographs recently taken in the burying places around Agawam, and chart the evolution of cemeteries and gravestones from the colonial era into the 21 st century. 413-789-1550. 750 Cooper Street. Agawam, MA. (FREE)

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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Tuesday, October 4, 9am-10am
ORNITHOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE WALK
You don’t have to venture far into the woods to learn about birds. Birds are everywhere! Individuals and families with children ages 6 and older are invited to Holyoke Heritage State Park for a guided walk wherein attendees will look for, and identify, various birds. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Meet in front of the visitors’ center. 413-534-1723. 221 Appleton Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, October 4, 9:30am-12pm
GEOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE HIKE
Throughout Mount Holyoke there is geological evidence about the natural history of the Pioneer Valley. Nature enthusiasts ages twelve and up are invited on a guided hike to see these pieces of history and learn how the shape of the Pioneer Valley came to be what we know today. Children must be accompanied by an adult. This hike is approximately 2.5 miles over moderate to steep terrain. Bring water, bug spray, and sunscreen and wear appropriate clothing and footwear. Meet at the summit house deck at Skinner State Park. 413-586-0350. 20 Skinner State Park Road. Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, October 4, 5:30pm
ART STUDIES/LEGAL STUDIES
Art history encompasses many sub topics, including the issue of provenance, meaning the artwork’s place of origin. Art historians trace artworks’ geographic histories and various ways in which they make their way from one owner to the next. In addition to ownership, art history covers issues of authorship. Martha Buskirk will be discussing these topics in her lecture, “The Convenient Fiction of Authorship (On the Interwined Fortunes of Art and Copyright),” at the Clark Art Institute. The lecture will be held in the Michael Conforti Pavilion.413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Wednesday, October 5, 9:30am-11am
NATURE STUDIES/PLAYGROUP
It’s never too early to get your kids out and enjoying nature! In this nature playgroup at Bartholomew’s Cobble, children ages 2.5 and up, and their caregivers, will learn about exciting changes happening all around us this fall season. Kids and their parents will get up and moving around the cobble as they learn. This playgroup is not stroller friendly and requires walking on uneven paths in all weather conditions. Snacks are provided. Families must register the week before by emailing cpetrikhuff@thetrustees.org. This ongoing group will take place through November 9th, so participants will be able to take in autumn as the environment changes. 413-229-8600. 117 Cooper Hill Road. Sheffield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 4pm-7:30pm
ART STUDIES/PLACEMAKING
Buskers bring music directly to audience members who may or may not be familiar with their music, by playing at unannounced times and locations on city streets. Art Stop(s), a downtown street art event in Springfield, will feature many buskers as well as artist talks and pop up gallery experiences. There will also be film screenings. Meet lots of performers, creators, artists, and musicians local to the area. For more information,visit the Springfield Culture website, or call 413-454-1195. Downtown. Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 5pm-6pm
PUMPKIN PAINTING
Does your teenager love Halloween? While trick or treating is primarily a young child’s activity, the allure of dressing as your favorite character, celebrating the beauty of fall, and engaging in spooky crafts transcends age. Teens are invited to the Sunderland Public Library to paint pumpkins! Use them to decorate your house in the spirit of autumn. 413-665-2642. 20 School Street. Sunderland, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 5pm-6:30pm
ECOLOGY/BEAVERS
From afar, a beaver dam looks like a big pile of sticks, but a closer examination reveals careful construction and cool inner architecture! Through the creation of dams, beavers have had profound effects on plant, animal, and microbial communities across the country. Learn more about our country’s largest rodent and their relationship within our ecosystem by visiting the beaver ponds at Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary. This program is suitable for ages three and up. 413-637-0320. 472 West Mountain Road. Lenox, MA. (<$)

Wednesday, October 5, 6pm
POLITICAL SCIENCE
In order to become actively engaged with politics and possibly even make a political impact, you first have to gain an understanding of how government and the political process functions. This presentation at the Greenfield Public Library can help you gain a better understanding of the current state of politics in this coutnry. Patrick Barron, will be presenting his talk, “Defining the Machine: Why Our Government is Broken and How to Fix It.” Barron ran for Congress in the Massachusetts 3rd Congressional district as an Independent against 7 term incumbent James McGovern (D) in 2010. He will share what he learned from that experience as well as his general knowledge of our election system and more. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 6:30pm
MUSIC STUDIES
Have you ever wanted to learn a music instrument? Or, if you already know how to play one, would you like to expand your knowledge to a new instrument? Julie Stepanek will be offering ukulele classes for beginners at the Storrs Library on October 5, November 16, and December 14. You can attend one lesson or all three. Loaner ukuleles will be available on a first-come first-served basis. Arrive early if you would like to borrow one. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 7pm
FITNESS/HISTORY
Sports writing is an exciting field which combines a creative interest in writing, with a love of sports! Dr. Bass is a professor of History as well as a political analyst and a freelance sports writer. She will be at Westfield State University sharing her experiences of attending nine Olympic games! Dr. Bass published three books: Not the Triumph but the Struggle: The 1968 Olympic Games and the Making of the Black Athlete, In the Game: Race, Identity, and Sports in the Twentieth Century, and Those About Him Remained Silent: the Battle over W.E.B. Du Bois. For more information, contact Dr. Morin at emorin@westfield.ma.edu. 413-572-5300. 577 Western Avenue. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, October 5, 7pm
FILM STUDIES/CULTURE STUDIES
The 3rd Annual Spanish/Portuguese film festival at Holyoke Community College invites the entire community to learn about Spanish and Portuguese culture through contemporary films, with screenings every Wednesday through October 26. This week, come to a screening of the 2013 film, I Am From Chile, a coming of age immigration story about a boy who moves to London from Chile to study English and travel around Europe. The film will be in Spanish with English subtitles. This screening is open to the public. 303 Homestead Avenue. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

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Thursday, Ocdtober 6, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Thursday, October 6, 10am-11am
PARENTING/CULTURAL STUDIES
Early childhood is the best time to introduce languages to your child. As part of their Puzzle of Parenting series, the Collaborative for Educational Services is providing a bilingual story, music, and games session for families. Participants will engage their children with both English and Spanish, and learn about Spanish and Latin American culture. This could be a great way to connect your child to their own heritage, or to introduce other cultures for a more global understanding. This program is intended for children ages birth to five years, and their caregivers. Register on the Collaborative for Educational Services website. This session will take place at the Amherst Family Center. For more information, call the Collaborative at 413-586-4900. 1200 N Pleasant Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, October 6, 10:30am-11:30am
NATURAL HISTORY/LOCAL HISTORY
Get out in nature while learning about the industrial history of your community! Individuals and families with children ages 8 and older (siblings welcome) are invited to tour Holyoke’s upper and second level canals. In this walk you will learn about the canals’ history, how they were built, how they were harnessed to power paper and textile mills, and how they are used today. Meet at the visitors’ center at Holyoke Heritage State Park. Children must be accompanied by an adult. 413-534-1723. 221 Appleton Street. Holyoke, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, October 6, 12:15pm-1pm
ART STUDIES
Even if you are not an art scholar, you have most likely seen the iconic paintings of Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1526-1593), a European artist who used images of fruits, vegetables, and flowers to create allegorical portraits of emperors. Art historians and those interested in learning about art history are invited to the Springfield Museums to view a documentary film about this artist’s life and work.The audience is invited to bring a lunch to enjoy during the program. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (<$)

Thursday, October 6, 1:30pm-2:45
WELLNESS/SLEEP SCIENCE
Lots of people suffer from insomnia at various stages of their lives. Trouble falling asleep or staying asleep can be a good reason to re-focus energy on mindfulness and relaxation as much as possible. Measures which can improve sleep include avoiding work or stressful activities in the bedroom, avoiding screens (television, computer, phone etc.) for an hour or two prior to sleeping, and tons of relaxation techniques. The Forbes Library is offering an ongoing workshop, on Thursdays through December 8, to help people promote better sleep through mindful and creative journaling. Bring a Journal or sketchbook, pens, colored pencils, watercolor paints or your favorite art supplies. Creative journaling doesn’t require any previous art making experience.413-587-1011. 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, October 6, 2pm
ART HISTORY
In 1916, Norman Rockwell painted his first cover for the Saturday Evening Post, the magazine considered by the artist to be the “greatest show window in America.” For the next 47 years, millions of Americans welcomed Rockwell’s art into their homes, enjoying the artist’s iconic cover and interior art.The exhibit, Build a Better Baby Carriage at the Norman Rockwell Museum features original three-dimensional artworks inspired by Rockwell’s first Post cover, Boy with Baby Carriage. The exhibit is on view through October 30, 2016. Adult visitors are invited to explore the historic property of the museum, while enjoying a guided talk about this outdoor exhibit. The event is free for museum members, or included with museum admission. 413-931-2278. 9 Glendale Road (Rt. 183). Stockbridge, MA. ($. College students with ID <$)

Thursday, October 6, 4pm
PUBLIC HEALTH/MEDICINE
What do you think of when you think of “medicine?” Perhaps you think of chemical compounds, pills or vials, plants or herbs. What about exercise? Daniel Lieberman of Harvard University will be discussing the concept of exercise as medicine in this lecture at UMass Amherst. In his talk he will take an evolutionary perspective as he explains the power of exercise to prevent illness and promote health. Commonwealth Honors College. Room 160 East. 157 Commonwealth Avenue. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, October 6, 5pm-8pm
PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT
You may know that Theodor Geisel (a.k.a Dr. Seuss), lived in Springfield. Did you know that his grandfather co-founded one of Springfield’s earliest breweries? The company was called Kalmbach and Geisel, nicknamed “Comeback and Guzzle” by locals. In celebration of the forthcoming Dr. Seuss Museum, the Springfield Museums can attend an Oktoberfest beer tasting which includes a new brew inspired by this local history. The event will feature samples from 20 different home-brewers as well as commercial breweries.Tastings are included in the price of admission 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (Members <$; Non members $)

Thursday, October 6, 5:30pm-7pm
YOGA
Yantra yoga is a yoga practice that is over a thousand years old. It originated in Tibet and has made its way West, impacting yoga practices across the globe. Martina Kacurova will be teaching a Yantra yoga class every Thursday through November 3rd. Beginners are welcome to this course from the Shang Shung Institue of America. 413-369-4928. Classes take place at the Upstairs Studio. 25 Main Street. Northampton, MA. ($)

Thursday, October 6, 6pm-7:30pm
LITERACY
Talking, playing, sharing books and even singing with your children can help them grow into avid readers. In this four-session workshop at the South Hadley Public Library you will learn why these things are important. There will be lots of time to do fun activities with your child. Each session starts with a light supper. Childcare is provided during parent learning times. (Please plan to bring your child.) You’ll receive a book at each session to take home. Sessions take place on October 6, 13, 21, and 27. Register for this workshop series on the Collaborative for Educational Services website. For more information, call the Collaborative at 413-586-4900. 2 Canal Street. South Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, October 6, 6:30pm-8pm
PARENTING
The support of understanding parents can make a world of difference in a transgender or gender non-conforming child’s life! Join other parents of transgender and gender non-conforming children, teenagers, and adults for discussion and support. This group, TransformingParents, meets on the first Thursday of every month. Please contact transformingparents@gmail.com for more information. Northampton, MA.

Thursday, October 6, 7pm
CHILDREN’S MUSICAL
Based on the beloved Walt Disney classic of the same name, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of an arrogant young prince and his castle’s servants who fall under the spell of a wicked enchantress, who turns him into the hideous Beast. The only way the spell can be broken is if he learns to love and be loved in return. The story truly begins when the spirited, headstrong village girl Belle enters the Beast’s castle after he imprisons her father Maurice. With the help of his enchanted servants, including the matronly Mrs. Potts and the playful teacup named Chip, Belle begins to draw the cold-hearted Beast out of his isolation. Through the art of song and dance, this timeless tale highlights the importance of remaining true to ourselves and reminds us that real beauty comes from within. The production is presented by the Arena Civic Theatre and performances will be held at The Ruth B. Smith Auditorium in the Orange Town Hall. 6 Prospect Street, Orange, MA. ($$)

Thursday, October 6, 7pm-8:30pm
TRIVIA/INTERGENERATIONAL
Each individual has vastly different knowledge. Trivia can be an opportunity to show off what you know, and learn interesting facts about all sorts of topics. Maybe you know a lot about history and sports, but your kids know about music and science. The Jones Library invites you to bring friends and family to their trivia night, or come alone and meet new people to form a team. There will be two rounds of 15 questions each, and there will be prizes for the top team. Doors open at 6:45 pm, and the event starts promptly at 7 pm. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (DONATION)

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Friday, October 7, 2016

Storyhour & Playgroups

Friday, October 7, 10am-11am
NATURE STUDIES
Your children between the ages of three to six can learn about biology, ecology, and animal studies through interactive programs at weekly “Kidleidoscope” Mount Holyoke Range State Park. Through a story, an art project, and activity, kids will learn about local plants and animals. On October 7, participants will learn about hawks! Meet at the Notch Visitor Center. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 12:15pm
LOCAL HISTORY/LIBRARY SCIENCE
Learning about the history of your town can strengthen your connection to place, as you situate local history within a wider national context. The Amherst Historical Society and Museum’s History Bites Lunchtime Lecture Series will do just that by teaching attendees about the historically impactful events which have taken place in Amherst and surrounding towns. On October 7, postcard collector Greg Wilson will deliver the lecture, “Postcards of Amherst and Northampton.” If time permits, he will be happy to discuss and appraise individual postcards from the audience. Simeon Strong House. 67 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 2pm-3pm
GUIDED NATURE WALK
Walking in the woods is a relaxing and mind-clearing exercise. With a guide, you can add education to this healthy activity. People of all ages are invited to Wild Woods Walk at Mount Holyoke Range State Park.. A park interpreter will teach you about the plants and animals that call the park home. You will learn how to recognize some of them by sight and sound. Meet at the Notch Visitor Center. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 2:30pm
ART STUDIES/HISTORY
Personal accounts of significant events are primary sources, providing a uniquely personal insight into events that may be of interest. Art historians and fans of Norman Rockwell’s paintings may be interested in this opportunity to meet some of Rockwell’s former models at the Norman Rockwell Museum. They will share their personal experiences and audiences will find out what it was like to pose for America’s favorite illustrator. Free for Museum members, or included with Museum admission.413-298-4100. 9 MA-183. Stockbridge, MA. ($. College students with ID <$; Ages 6-18 <$; Under 5 FREE)

Friday, October 7, 3pm-3:30pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Aerial tramways, which transport people up mountains, were an exciting and possibly frightening invention when they were new. Riding one for the first time can be somewhat intimidating, especially for those who are unfamiliar with how they work. People ages twelve and up, and their caregivers, are invited to Skinner State Park to learn about the history of the tramway and the mix of feelings of 19th century visitors had when riding it. Meet at the summit house. 413-586-0350. 20 Skinner State Park Road. Hadley, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 3:30pm
AGRICULTURE/COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
4-H is an organization which encourages positive youth development. The program often offers opportunities in agriculture, camping, and other physical activities which encourage leadership and positive peer relationships. The West Springfield Public Library will be hosting this 4H open house, providing families with information on how their children could benefit from participating. 413-736-4561. 200 Park Street. West Springfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 5:45pm and 7pm
PARANORMAL/HISTORY
Besides dressing up in costume, carving pumpkins and eating sweets, there are lots of ways to celebrate Halloween. Some celebrations may even be educational, as well as entertaining. “Ghost tours” can be combined with real historic learning. The Mount, once a home to writers such as Edith Whatron, as well as actors, wealthy families, hardworking servants, and teenage girls, will be providing ghost tours on Fridays in October, as well as Saturdays October 22 and 29, and on the night of Halloween (Monday October 31). The 90-minute ghost tour starts at the Stable and ends at the Main House. Please arrive 15 minutes early. Please note that this tour is not suitable for wheelchairs and includes about a half-mile walk with some steep areas. Tickets must be purchased in advance. 413-551-5111. 2 Plunkett Street. Lenox, MA. ($)

Friday, October 7, 6pm-8pm
ART STUDIES/FIBER ARTS
Dawn Allen is a local fiber artist, creatively innovating the world of quilts. She created a new technique of inserting wire in-between the layers of her quilts to create three-dimensional flowers. You can see her work in person by visiting the exhibit, “Dawn Allen’s Secret Garden,”on view through October 22 at the Shoppe/Gallery in the Rinnova Building. Visit the Westfield Creative Arts for more information. The public is invited to attend this reception for her work. 413-579- 5967. 105 Elm Street. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 7:30pm
THEATER
Amazingly, Shakespeare’s poetry and plays from the 16th and 17th century are still read and analyzed regularly, and appear on required reading lists in high school and beyond. The world seems to agree that he is one of the greatest writers of all time. You can get a crash course in the plots of Shakespeare’s plays by attending Silverstone Theater Comany’s performance of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged). This play is a comedic take on Shakespeare’s work, representing all 37 of Shakespeare’s works (poems included) in one evening’s entertainment. The performance will take place at The Arts Block. Reserve over the phone at 413-768-7514. 289 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. ($)

Friday, October 7, 7:30pm-9:30pm
ASTRONOMY
An interest in studying astronomy can develop from an interest in mathematical calculation, or a simple appreciation for the beauty of the sky. Families can share their interest in astronomy with one another by attending a Stars Over Springfield night at the Springfield Museums. These programs are are best suited for families with children ages 8 and older, however younger children are also welcome. If it is cloudy, a planetarium show will be presented in place of telescope viewing. For more astronomy learning, check out our post, Astronomy Learning this Leading Up to the Autumnal Equinox… and Beyond!. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (<$)

Friday, October 7, 8pm
ASTRONOMY
While some people lament the shorter days of fall and winter, longer nights provide more chances to learn about astronomy through observations of the night sky! The Old Hopkins Observatory and planetarium at Williams College are rich resources for learning about astronomy, as well as the history of the topic. 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. Astronomy students at the College will host this free show, open to the public. Attendees will learn about topics such as retrograde motions of the planets, phases of the moon, the varying temperatures/colors of stars, locations of neighboring galaxies, and more. 413-597-2188. Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Friday, October 7, 8pm
CHILDREN’S MUSICAL
Based on the beloved Walt Disney classic of the same name, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of an arrogant young prince and his castle’s servants who fall under the spell of a wicked enchantress, who turns him into the hideous Beast. The only way the spell can be broken is if he learns to love and be loved in return. The story truly begins when the spirited, headstrong village girl Belle enters the Beast’s castle after he imprisons her father Maurice. With the help of his enchanted servants, including the matronly Mrs. Potts and the playful teacup named Chip, Belle begins to draw the cold-hearted Beast out of his isolation. Through the art of song and dance, this timeless tale highlights the importance of remaining true to ourselves and reminds us that real beauty comes from within. The production is presented by the Arena Civic Theatre and performances will be held at The Ruth B. Smith Auditorium in the Orange Town Hall. 6 Prospect Street, Orange, 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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