Suggested Events for September 16th-22nd, 2017

Hilltown Families List of Weekly Suggested Events

To find out about more event, be sure to visit our Suggest an Event Bulletin Board to see what our readers have recently shared! Have an event to share? Feel encouraged to self-post community events here at any time!

Suggest EventIf you have a community event, educational program, or service-learning opportunity 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.

Bulletin Board

Learn in Motion gets kids playing and learning through enrichment programming for schools, libraries and museums, educational introductory sports classes, and special events. Programs get children off screens, active, learning and having a ball. They encourage children to socialize and practice important life skills such as sharing, listening, following directions, working as a team, and overcoming obstacles. Through their programming, Learn in Motion also teaches traditional academic content such as letters, numbers, shapes, colors and more. For more information about their schedule, programs and offerings, visit www.learninmotionma.com, email learninmotionma@gmail.com or call 413-244-2073.

Trial Class Sept 20

A delightful music class for children age 0-5 and their grown-ups, created and taught by national recording artist, Katryna Nields. All songs are hand-selected by Katryna and Nerissa Nields. In HooteNanny, participants sing, play, and dance and make wonderful friendships. Come spend playful, enriching, connected time with your child and be part of the wonderful HooteNanny community. Fall session begins September 27/28, 2017. Free trial class on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 10am. For more information go to www.hootenannyfamily.com or write to hootenannymusicclass@gmail.com.

Sep 23 & 24

The 19th Annual North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival is September 23 & 24 from 10am-5pm in Orange MA. There’s something for everyone at this fabulous family destination. Over 100 booths are vibrant with local artists, farmers, fabulous food, chef demos and skills for local living. Enjoy amazing music, performance, spoken word and dance on three stages. New! ‘The World We Love,’ a giant handcrafted globe in the kid’s activity tent- add your vision and join the celebratory parade at the end of each festival day. Plus hula-hooping, horse-drawn hayrides, and garlic games all weekend. Only $5.00 adults, Kids 12 & under are free! More for travel/parking info and program visit www.garlicandarts.org; Follow festival updates daily on Facebook.

Sep 25

Monday, September 25, 2017, 10am-3pm: Soar into spring with Homeschool Day at the New England Air Museum in Windsor Locks, CT. Open exclusively for homeschoolers and their families, and featured activities include: hands-on build & fly challenge activities, interactive flight science demonstrations, open cockpit experiences in historic aircraft, aircraft quests, fight simulators, and more! Virtual Flight Center access available for additional $5 per person. Tickets available for purchase on the day of your visit on a first come first served basis. Pre-registration required. Children ages 3 and under admitted free. www.neam.org for an online registration form. Please call 860-623-3305 x313 for questions.

Add your class

Hilltown Families has put together an After-School Classes & Enrichment Programs Directory of classes and programs happening across Western Massachusetts throughout the school year.  Our community is rich in learning opportunities to supplement the interests of children, teens, and life-long learners and our directory makes it easier to find these gems while connecting families with resources that support their interests and education. — Have a class or program you’d like to include in our directory? Click here to find out how to have it added. New and updated opportunities are added throughout the year.

Add your school

Hilltown Families Preschool Directory: Are you looking for a preschool that fits your child’s personality and reflects your family’s values? Check out our growing Preschool Directory, covering all four counties in Western Massachusetts, and find the perfect place for your young one! — Have a school you’d like to include in this list? Click here to find out how to have it added.

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 at sales@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
September 16th-22nd, 2017

SaturdaySunday
MondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFriday

Suggest an EventCultural 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, September 16, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Hilltown Family Variety Show9-10am – HILLTOWN FAMILY VARIETY SHOW: Tune in on your FM dial, or listen live via streaming audio at www.valleyfreeradio.org. This week, Andrés and Christina from 123 Andrés share the things that inspire them. Friends, travel, and dreams fill this episode, along with music from different artists… including a zombie! — www.123andres.com 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 select from over 10 years of archived shows!

Saturday, September 16, 6am-9pm
POETRY
For citizens of Amherst and beyond, Emily Dickinson’s life in Western Mass is a point of pride and a launching point for education. Learning about Emily Dickinson’s life in Amherst can strengthen your connection to place through a broadening of your historical knowledge. The annual Amherst Poetry Festival brings poets and fans of poetry together in a celebration of local history and contemporary writing. On Saturday, September 16 there will be readings, workshops, and other events all day long to connect people with historic and contemporary poetry. The day kicks off with the beginning of the Emily Dickinson Poetry marathon, a tradition which takes approximately fourteen hours to complete. All of Emily Dickinson’s 1,789 poems are read out loud in the home and landscape where she wrote them. Visit the Emily Dickinson Museum website for a full schedule of events to take place during the festival. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 7am-4pm
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES/GUIDED NATURE WALKS
Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more through their annual, guided nature walk series. Visit their website and choose between several walks ranging from tours of historic buildings, cemeteries, and town centers, hikes on the Appalachian Trail, walks through industrial heritage sites and ruins, walks and bike rides on old country roads that have a history, behind-the-scenes tours at various performing arts venues, and strolls through formal gardens and estate. Walks take place in the Berkshires and beyond. (FREE- $$)

Saturday, September 16, 8am-10pm
AGRICULTURAL FAIR
Do you know the location of the largest agricultural event on the eastern seaboard? Do you know the location of the 5th largest fair in the U.S.? The answer to both of these questions is the same: The Pioneer Valley! The “Big E,” or the Eastern States Exposition has been running since 1916 and represents all New England states: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Filled with culture, history, animals, food, rides, performances and so much more. One of the biggest attractions is the “Avenue of States,” life-size replicas of the six original New England statehouses that contain samples of the culture, food and traditions of that state. The Big E will runs from September 15 through October first. Visit The Big E website for full details. Eastern States Exposition. 413-737-2443 . 1305 Memorial Ave. West Springfield, MA. ($)

Saturday, September 16, 9am
ASTRONOMY
Astronomy is a fascinating branch of science for those who enjoy mathematical computations, or simply like to look up at the sky! The 35th annual Connecticut River Valley Astronomers Conjunction invites you to socialize at the Swap Table, where astronomical items and treasures are bought and sold. At 10am, Richard Sanderson will moderate the talk, “Eclipse Adventures: A Look Back at the Great American Eclipse,” where participants can share stories and images of the August 21 total solar eclipse. In the evening, bring your telescope for observation sessions at “Fuller’s Pasture,” a dark sky viewing site near Northfield Mountain Recreation and Environmental Center. Visit the event website for a full schedule. 800-859-2960. 99 Millers Falls Road. Northfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 9am-2pm
ECOLOGY
Rivers are everywhere, and the best way to learn about local rivers is to visit them, walk along the edge, and dive in whenever possible. At the 4th annual Watershed Blitz, participants will walk segments of the East Branch Trail at the Chesterfield Gorge, talking with river specialists, naturalists, and other river stewards. For more details, contact Meredyth at 413-623-2070 or volunteer@wildscenicwestfieldriver.org. River Road. West Chesterfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 9:30am-11:30am
HUMANITIES/GUIDED NATURE WALKS
Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more through their annual, guided nature walk series. On September 16, you can join John Dickson of the Berkshire County Historical Society, for a tour of the urban mills of 1800s Pittsfield. The walk will take place along the Housatonic River and it’s tributary, Onota Brook, passing by the buildings and remnants of 7 “major and once thriving” mills. Meet at the Pontoosuc Lake boat ramp on Hancock Road. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 10am-1:30pm
LITERACY/COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION
Libraries are fantastic institutions which help provide equal, free access to information, including but not limited to books. Still, owning a copy of a book can be convenient- you have it forever, you can make notes in it, you can lend it to a friend. Luckily, there is a way to purchase books and other items while still supporting the library. Come to the Friends of the Library Book Sale at the Greenfield Public Library to buy your next round of books. 413-772-1544. 402 Main Street. Greenfield, MA. (MARKET/SALE)

Saturday, September 16, 10am-12pm
ECOLOGY/HISTORY
The landscape of the Berkshires has undergone massive changes, largely due to human activity. Come to the program, “From Iron Ore to Orioles,” to learn about how 18th and 19th century charcoal, lime, glass, and iron industries impacting the land. Educators will explain the impact these industries had on forests and wildlife. Participants will will travel by van to lime and charcoal making sites at a nearby part of Mass Audubon’s Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary and then to the Lenox Historical Society’s iron ore sites in downtown Lenox. Registration is required. Meet at Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary. 413-637-0320. 472 West Mountain Road. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 10am-6pm
PLACEMAKING/INTERGENERATIONAL
The Second Annual Jackson Street School PTO Community Carnival allows families to get together, after the start of the school year, for an enjoyable all ages event. The carnival features more than twenty handmade midway-style games, a dunk tank, an inflatable obstacle course, classic carnival treats and thousands of prizes. Refreshments available for purchase, and game tickets are available at the event. All proceeds go to support the Jackson Street School students. 120 Jackson Street. Northampton, MA. (<$)

Saturday, September 16, 10:30am-12pm
STEAM/ENTOMOLOGY
Bees do a lot more than just make honey! You’re invited to the Meekins Library to engage in bee-themed crafts and learn about the role of local bees. Participants will learn about planting pollinators at home to attract bees. 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 11am-12:30pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Wistariahurst Bicycle Tours of Holyoke will get you exercising outdoors while you learn about local history- seeing it firsthand with architectural examples. The first tour will visit The Mansions of Holyoke. Cycle around homes built by the Holyoke industrialists of the 19th and 20th centuries, through highlands and the Fairfield Avenue Historic District with their grand Victorian houses. Learn about the families, architects and builders of these magnificent homes. This route will begin at Kennedy Park and tour around Fairfield Avenue, Lexington Avenue, Madison Avenue and River Terrace. Call 413-322-5660 for more information. Holyoke, MA. ($)

Saturday, September 16, 11am-11pm
NATURE STUDIES
Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more through their annual, guided nature walk series. On September 16 you can join the Berkshire Natural Resources Council staff and experts in the natural sciences for a Bioblitz. The Bioblitz is an opportunity for the general public to engage with biologists, naturalists and environmentalists to survey as many species as possible in a given area within a 24-hour period. You will see firsthand the importance of a healthy, active ecosystem in your own community. Berkshire Bioblitz offers a variety of family-friendly, interactive, nature-oriented nature walks and talks taking place throughout the day. Visit the Housatonic Heritage website for full details. Thomas & Palmer Brook Reserve. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 1pm-3pm
ART STUDIES/ECOLOGY
A new art exhibition at the Great Falls Discovery Center has been forging a connection between art and ecology. The reception for The Power of Water / The Power of Words will foster community dialogues around policy-making as it relates to the health and recreational use of the Connecticut River. Sponsored by the and Art & Dialogue. The reception includes a brief talk on dam relicensing efforts and the Connecticut River Conservancy. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 2:30pm
LITERATURE/FILM STUDIES
2017 marks the 200th anniversary of the death of Jane Austen, one of the world’s most beloved authors. Many of Austen’s works have been adapted for the screen. The Jones Library will be hosting a film series to celebrate Austen’s life and work. On September 16, the library will screen the 1940 film Pride and Prejudice (not rated), based on the book which was published in 1813. This film tells the story of the five Bennet sisters living in early 19th century England. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Saturday, September 16, 7:45pm-11pm
DANCE STUDIES/INTERGENERATIONAL
Contra dance is a group folk dancing style with multiple European origins. It consists of lines of couples. Whether you are a seasoned contra dancer looking for a new venue, or you want to try it for the first time, you can come to a contra dancing night at the Lenox Community Center. The ballroom is handicap accessible and has a beautiful wood floor. Dances begin with a beginner introduction at 7:45. Contra dancing takes place every third Saturday of the month. 413-528-4007. 65 Walker Street. Lenox, MA. ($)

Saturday, September 16, 8pm
THEATER/OPERA
Newton Arvin was a renowned literature professor at Smith College in 1960. He was arrested and disgraced for receiving erotic images of men through the mail. A new opera from award-winning biographer Barry Werth and composer Eric Sawyer draws connections from this event and the novel The Scarlet Letter to tell the unfolding drama of Arvin’s arrest and trial. Lovers of contemporary theater and local history can see a performances of The Scarlet Professor at Theater 14. Smith College. Northampton, MA. ($)

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Sunday, September 17, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming 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 select from over 10 years of archived shows!

Sunday, September 17, 8am-12pm
NATURE STUDIES
Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more through their annual, guided nature walk series. On September 17 you can join the Berkshire Natural Resources Council staff and experts in the natural sciences for the continuation of their Bioblitz which begins on September 16. The Bioblitz is an opportunity for the general public to engage with biologists, naturalists and environmentalists to survey as many species as possible in a given area within a 24-hour period. You will see firsthand the importance of a healthy, active ecosystem in your own community. Berkshire Bioblitz offers a variety of family-friendly, interactive, nature-oriented nature walks and talks taking place throughout the day. Visit the Housatonic Heritage website for full details. Thomas & Palmer Brook Reserve. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 8:30am-11:30am
CANOE/ECOLOGY
Anyone with an interest in ecology and zoology may be interested in participating in a naturalist guided canoe trip through the ecologically rich Housatonic Valley Wildlife Management Area in Lenox. Participants will watch for swallows, herons, kingfishers, muskrats, and signs of beavers along the scenic and meandering Housatonic River and learn about why the waterway is the natural heart of the Berkshires. Registration is required. New Lenox Road. Lenox, MA. ($)

Sunday, September 17, 9am-1pm
Housatonic Heritage will be offering several opportunities to learn about local history, natural history, infrastructure, architecture, ecology, and more through their annual, guided nature walk series. On September 17, join author of “50 Hikes in the Berkshires” book, Lauren Stevens, for a hike to the Hancock Shakers’ Holy Sites. Participants will follow Shaker Brook past their old water system remains, pass by foundation remains and up Shaker Mountain, the Hancock community’s holy site, then travel back down into the valley and up Holy Mount, which belonged to the New Lebanon Shaker community. Stonewalls and some other artifacts will be visible. Bring lunch & drink and wear sturdy shoes/boots. Meet at the parking lot of Hancock Shaker Village. 1843 West Housatonic Street. Pittsfield MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 10am-11am
ECOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE WALK
The Housatonic River Walk is a local resource for environmental learning. Educator Elia Del Molino will be offering a guided, interpretive walk at DuBois River Garden Park. Tour this National Recreation Trail to discover its historic, cultural and ecological significance. Email info@gbtrails.org to register. Church Street and River Street. Great Barrington, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 9:30am-10am
GEOLOGY
What do people mean when they refer to “geologic time?” The geologic time scale is a system of dating used by geologists, paleontologists, and other Earth scientists. This system conceptualizes time in relation to geological events in the Earth’s history. Adults and families with children ages ten and older are invited to travel through geologic time as it relates to the local landscape, in the program “Making the Connecticut River Valley,” at Mount Holyoke Range State Park. See our home transform between ocean, mountains, lava, and ice. The talk will end with trail recommendations for exploring the geology on your own. Meet at the picnic table behind the kiosk. In case of rain, meet in Visitors Center. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 10:30am-11:30am
BOTANY
You may want to learn how to identify plants because of their possible nutritional value, their medicinal properties, their beauty, or to avoid the dangers of poisonous plants. The “Big Picture Botany” program at the Great Falls Discovery Center appeals to all of these reasons. Participants will deal more with visual patterns than Latin names, to spark your own connection to plant identification. Participants can attend one or all sessions on 17 and October 1. 413-863-3221. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 11am-12:30pm
LOCAL HISTORY
Wistariahurst Bicycle Tours of Holyoke will get you exercising outdoors while you learn about local history- seeing it firsthand with architectural examples. The Mills of Holyoke tour will focus on the history of the nationally recognized historic district around the canals and nearby mills. Learn about the city’s industrial history and canal landscapes while seeing how the landscape is evolving and the mills are being reused in the city today. The tour route will begin and end at Holyoke Heritage State Park and will include stops on Race Street, Bridge Street and Lyman Street. Call 413-322-5660 for more information. Holyoke, MA. ($)

Sunday, September 17, 1:30pm-2:30pm
CARILLON
A carillon is a musical instrument involving at least twenty-three bells, typically played by striking a keyboard. Automated music can also be played on certain carillons, similar to a player piano. You can hear these bells played by a carilloneur in Stanley Park. All are welcome. 413-568-9312. 400 Western Avenue. Westfield, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 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 Road. Westhampton, MA (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 3pm
POETRY
For citizens of Amherst and beyond, Emily Dickinson’s life in Western Mass is a point of pride and a launching point for education. Learning about Emily Dickinson’s life in Amherst can strengthen your connection to place through a broadening of your historical knowledge. The annual Amherst Poetry Festival brings poets and fans of poetry together in a celebration of local history and contemporary writing. On Sunday the festival winds to a close with a jubilat (literary magazine) reading featuring poets Caryl Pagel, Kevin González, and Emily Pettit. Visit the Emily Dickinson Museum website for a full schedule of events to take place during the festival. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Sunday, September 17, 5:30pm-7pm
MUSIC STUDIES
Singing releases both endorphins and oxytocin, leaving the singer more relaxed. Oxytocin also causes a feeling of bonding with others. Combine singing with a sense of community and you are bound to experience a strong sense of belonging. Come to a community singing event at Earthdance, followed by a potluck supper, to experience the benefits of music and community involvement. 413-634-5678. 252 Prospect Street. Plainfield, MA. (DONATION)

Sunday, September 17, 8pm
THEATER/OPERA
Newton Arvin was a renowned literature professor at Smith College in 1960. He was arrested and disgraced for receiving erotic images of men through the mail. A new opera from award-winning biographer Barry Werth and composer Eric Sawyer draws connections from this event and the novel The Scarlet Letter to tell the unfolding drama of Arvin’s arrest and trial. Lovers of contemporary theater and local history can see a performances of The Scarlet Professor at Theater 14. Smith College. Northampton, MA. ($)

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Monday, September 18, 2017

Storyhour & Playgroups: East Longmeadow, Pelham & Whately

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Monday, September 18, 10am-11am
GUIDED NATURE HIKE
For young children, spending time out in the woods can help them burn off some energy. Young children and their caregivers are invited on guided Preschool Parade hikes at Mount Holyoke Range State Park. Meet in Visitors Center. Wear sturdy boots or shoes and bring water and insect deterrents. In case of rain, call to confirm. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Monday, September 18, 5:30pm-6:30pm
YOGA/INTERGENERATIONAL
Want to take a yoga class with your child? Children ages ten and up are welcome to yoga classes in Stanley Park! A certified instructor will lead participants of all levels through foundational yoga poses and breathing exercises. Yoga In The Park will take place weekly through October 16. Bring your own mat and any props as needed, wear comfortable and stretchy clothes. You may sign up by emailing gdelmastro@stanleypark.org or call 413-568-9312 ext. 112 or register at the park at your first class where registration forms will be available. 400 Western Avenue. Westfield, MA. (<$)

Monday, September 18, 2pm
ART STUDIES/LIFELONG LEARNING
People with dementia or Alzheimer’s and their caregivers are welcome to attend a special gallery talk at the Clark Art Institute. “Meet Me at the Clark” takes place when the museum is closed to the public in order to create a private, calm atmosphere, and consists of a viewing and discussion about the art. This gallery talk is great for both the person with dementia and the caregiver – both can enjoy seeing and experiencing art and spending time together in a meaningful way. Call to register. 413-458-2303. 225 South Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

Monday, September 18, 6pm-7pm
LITERACY
A special Sensory Storytime at the Agawam Public Library is an ideal storytime for children with autism spectrum disorders, or sensory integration challenges. The program engages children through movement, music, stories and sensory activity play, helping children both improve their sensory integration skills and develop a love of reading at the same time.
Registration is suggested so that the storytime leader can tailor this program to your child’s needs. Call 413-789-1550 or email pweingart@agawamlibrary.org. 750 Cooper Street. Agawam, MA. (FREE)

Monday, September 18, 7pm-8pm
MEDITATION/MINDFULNESS
Whether you want to try meditation for the first time, or you want to strengthen your practice, you can participate in a free mindfulness intro class at Amherst Mindfulness. PArticipants with learn through a combination of instruction, experience, and sharing. Instructor Michele Miller recently transitioned from her career of thirteen years as a real estate developer and property manager to pursue work as a mindfulness teacher. She completed the MBSR practicum at UMass Medical Center’s Center for Mindfulness, and is currently receiving mentorship from Diane Reibel through the UC San Diego Center for Mindfulness. 413-222-8067. 17 Kellogg Avenue. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Storyhour & Playgroups: Agawam, Amherst, Belchertown, Cheshire, Easthampton, Florence, Gill, Great Barrington, Greenfield, Hatfiled, Huntington, Lanesborough, Lee, Ludlow, New Salem, North Adams, Sheffield, Sunderland, Turners Falls, Ware & West Springfield.

Tuesday, September 19, 1pm-2pm
LITERACY
Therapy dogs can help their owners deal with mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. These dogs have also been utilized as a calming presence to help children as they learn how to read aloud. Bring your child, with a book, to the Meekins Library for the chance to read to a ceritifed therapy dog. Ages five and up. Registration is required. 413-268-7472. 2 Williams Street. Williamsburg, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, September 19, 5pm-7:30pm
PARENTING/SUPPORT
Grandparents raising grandchildren can benefit from meeting others in the same position, in a supportive environment. The Family Place is offering a workshop on this topic, inviting grandparents and kinship caregivers to meet. guest speaker will talk about Grief and Loss for Kinship Families. A light dinner and dessert will be provided. Child care can be available for those who register ahead of time. To register, contact Colleen Pritoni at colleen.pritoni@state.ma.us. 413-663-7588. 61 Main Street, Suite 218. North Adams, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, September 19, 6:30pm
LITERATURE/CULTURE STUDIES
World literature, whether historic or contemporary, provides insight into different cultures and experiences. A new world literature book club at the Storrs Library offers the chance to discuss masterpieces of literature from across the globe and through historical eras. Bay Path Professor Lisa Ruch, Ph.D will run the discussions. The first book discussed will be The Epic of Gilgamesh. It is available through the library. Register online. 413-565-4181. 693 Longmeadow Street. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, September 19, 7pm
LITERATURE/FILM STUDIES
2017 marks the 200th anniversary of the death of Jane Austen, one of the world’s most beloved authors. Many of Austen’s works have been adapted for the screen. The Jones Library will be hosting a film series to celebrate Austen’s life and work. On September 19, the library will screen the 1995 film Sense and Sensibility (PG), based on the book which was published in 1811. This films tells of the Dashwood sisters, sensible Elinor and passionate Marianne, whose chances at marriage seem doomed by their family’s sudden loss of fortune. 413-259-3090. 43 Amity Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Tuesday, September 19, 7pm-9pm
POLITICAL SCIENCE
Terms like “radicalization” and “extremism” have dominated the global conversation recently, brought to the forefront by the harrowing events in Charlottesville and Barcelona. How is militancy cultivated, drawing one to operate within an extremist group? Perhaps the best way to learn about what this journey looks like is to hear from someone who directly experienced it. Mr. Mubin Shaikh is former Muslim extremist who later became an undercover operative for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and currently advises U.S. national security agencies on deradicalization and counterterrorism. Mr. Shaikh will speak about his work in the field and personal path away from extremism to rediscover his faith, at the Flywheel Arts Collective. 43 Main Street. Easthampton, MA. (FREE)

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Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Storyhour & Playgroups: Amherst, Athol, Becket, Belchertown, Bernardston, Cummington, Deerfield, East Longmeadow, Erving, Granby, Greenfield, Huntington, Leverett, Monson, New Marlborough, North Adams, Northampton, Sheffield, Shelburne Falls, South Deerfield, Springfield, Turners Falls, Wendell, West Springfield, and Williamsburg.

Wednesday, September 20, 8am-10am
ORNITHOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE WALK
Fall is a great time to learn about ornithology by observing migratory birds. Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary’s caretaker will lead adults on a weekly, guided bird walk past beaver wetlands and through woodlands looking for warblers, tanagers, orioles, and more. Bring binoculars; beginners are welcome. 413-637-0320. 472 West Mountain Road. Lenox, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, September 20, 10am
TRIAL MUSIC CLASS
A delightful music class for children age 0-5 and their grown-ups, created and taught by national recording artist, Katryna Nields. All songs are hand-selected by Katryna and Nerissa Nields. In HooteNanny, participants sing, play, and dance and make wonderful friendships. Come spend playful, enriching, connected time with your child and be part of the wonderful HooteNanny community. Fall session begins September 27/28, 2017. Free trial class on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 10am. For more information go to www.hootenannyfamily.com or write to hootenannymusicclass@gmail.com. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Wednesday, September 20, 6pm-7:30pm
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. Wear long pants, long sleeves, and a hat. Bring binoculars if you have them. Registration suggested but not required. 413-637-0320. 472 West Mountain Road. Lenox, MA. (<$)

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Thursday, September 21, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Storyhour & Playgroups: Agawam, Amherst, Athol, Belchertown, East Longmeadow, Florence, Gill, Greenfield, Hatfield, Huntington, Lee, Lenox, Millers Falls, Montague, Northampton, Sheffield, South Hadley, and Turners Falls.

Thursday, September 21, 9:30-12noon
ROSH HASHANAH
Lander-Grinspoon Academy hosts a musical alternative service for all ages from 9:30-11am and a children’s service with puppeteer, Anna Sobel (K-4th). Open to everyone. Gan Keshet. 253 Prospect St. Northampton, MA (FREE)

Thursday, September 21, 12pm-1pm
HEALTH
For anyone caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease, community support can go a long way. Caregivers Support Group is a new program for both professionals and family members who are assisting someone with Alzheimer’s disease or another type of dementia. The group is designed to provide participants with an opportunity to learn more about dementia and to understand their individual feelings about the life-changes associated with it. The program is free but reservations are required by calling 413-355-5905. 24 Tabor Crossing. Longmeadow, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, September 21, 12:15pm-1pm
HISTORY
Historically, how did people of various backgrounds react to the tragedy of slavery? After living for seven years among Texas Indians in the 16th century, explorer Cabeza de Vaca was horrified to discover his Spanish countrymen hunted Indians and forced them into slavery. In 1542, Vaca published La Relación, an account of his travels, in which he advocated using kindness and fairness rather than force in dealing with the native people of the New World. Learn more about his life and work at a Springfield Museums lunchtime lecture. 413-263-6800. 21 Edwards Street. Springfield, MA. (<$)

Thursday, September 21, 2pm
ART STUDIES
In addition to learning about the life and work of Norman Rockwell, a visit to the Norman Rockwell Museum can also connect participants with architecture, sculpture, and history. Interested adults are invited to participate in Historic Property Walks of the museum’s bucolic 36-acre campus. Free for Museum members, or included with Museum admission. 413-298-4100. 9 Glendale Road. Stockbridge, MA. ($. College students with ID <$)

Thursday, September 21, 3:30pm-4pm
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 suitable for all ages. Meet at the picnic table behind the kiosk in Mount Holyoke Range State Park. In case of rain, meet in Visitors Center. 413-253-2883. 1500 West Street. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Thursday, September 21, 5pm-7pm
LOCAL HISTORY
A guided nature walk at the Great Falls Discovery Center will teach visitors about local history through the lens of industry. Participants will take a stroll with local historian Ed Gregory, DCR’s Janel Nockleby, and Northfield Mountain’s Kim Noyes, along the Canalside Rail Trail. Canal Drawdown and Powertown History Stroll. Wear walking shoes and meet at the entrance of the Center for this two mile walk on flat terrain. Register at: 800-859-2960. 2 Avenue A. Turners Falls, MA. (FREE)

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Friday, September 22, 2017

Click HERE to discover classes. Click HERE to find out about other community events. Click HERE to leave a comment about upcoming events.

Storyhour & Playgroups: Amherst, Belchertown, Cummington, East Longmeadow, Easthampton, Florence, Granby, Great Barrington, Greenfield, Hadley, Housatonic, Longmeadow, Monson, Northampton, Pelham, Shutesbury, South Hadley, Stockbridge, and Sunderland.

Friday, September 22, 8am-10am
ORNITHOLOGY/GUIDED NATURE WALK
Fall is a great time to learn about ornithology by observing migratory birds. At Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary, bird watchers can find wood-warblers, orioles, thrushes and more as they observe wetlands, walk through meadows and woodlands. A guided bird walk at Canoe Meadows is offered weekly such that adults can observe changes in bird species over time. Bring binoculars; beginners are welcome. 413-637-0320. Holmes Road. Pittsfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, September 22, 9:30am-11am
ORNITHOLOGY
Hawks falcons, eagles, osprey, harriers, and vultures are migrating birds. In autumn, thousands can be seen traveling overhead in our region, especially from good viewing sites such as mountains. J. A. Skinner State Park’s Summit House deck is one of several great places in the valley to view these birds as they migrate south to their winter homes. Join a Park Interpreter as participants keep a sharp eye out for passing raptors and to identify them. If you have binoculars, please bring them. A scope will be available for shared use. Meet on the Summit House deck. For adults and families with children ages 6 and older. In case of rain, call 413-586- 0350 to confirm. 20 Skinner State Park Road. Hadley, MA. (Parking <$)

Friday, September 22, 11am-12pm
ROSH HASHANAH
Celebrate the World’s Birthday on Abundance Farm with Amy Meltzer (especially for ages 0-5 and their grownups). Open to everyone. Cancelled in the event of inclement weather. Abundance Farm. 253 Prospect St. Northampton, MA. (FREE)

Friday, September 22, 2pm-4pm
PHOTOGRAPHY
Retired teachers Carol Pike and Martha Tenney traveled to central Cuba in May 2016 with a “people-to-people” tour group through the Grand Circle Foundation. The photographs Pike took document their journey from Camagüey to Havana. Along the way, they met people from all walks of life, learning about their culture, history and everyday concerns. UMass Amherst Libraries will host an exhibition of photos, “¡Hola Cuba!: Travel Photography by Carol Pike,” offering the opportunity to learn about photography as well as the natural landscape, culture, and people of modern day Cuba. 154 Hicks Way. Amherst, MA. (FREE)

Friday, September 22, 4pm
AGRICULTURE/PLACEMAKING
This year marks the 160th anniversary of the Belchertown Fair! The fair kicks off on September 22 with a parade and will feature an exhibit hall, a petting zoo, a police dog show, a great pumpkin weigh in, kids’ games, and lots of entertainment for all ages. The long-standing New England tradition of agricultural fairs gives community members a chance to gather and celebrate agricultural traditions and skills. Visit the Belchertown Fair website for a full schedule and details. Belchertown, MA. ($)

Friday, September 22, 5pm-8pm
CREATIVE FREE PLAY
Pop Up Adventure Playgrounds are joyful sessions of child-directed play with scores of loose parts, such as cardboard boxes, tubes, rope, and fabric. Kids are free to make a beautiful mess and discover, or remember, the simple joys of creative, old-school play with other children and on their own. The Play Workshop will be providing one such adventurous session of play at Beacon Field. Greenfield, MA. (FREE)

Friday, September 22, 6pm
MUSIC STUDIES/CHAMBER MUSIC
The Stockbridge Library is hosting a new chamber music series beginning on September 22 with the Berkshire Chamber Players. The program will include Suite for Cello and Harp by Lou Harrison; Passacaglia for Violin and Viola -by Handel/arranged Halvorsen ; Terzetto in C, Op. 74 for 2 Violins and Viola by Dvorak ; Fantaisie for Violin and Harp by Saint-Saens; String Quartet No. 12 in F, Op. 96 “American Quartet” by Dvorak. 413-298-5501. 46 Main Street. Stockbridge, MA. ($)

Friday, September 22, 8pm
ASTRONOMY
Studies of outer space can be intriguing to young minds – particularly due to the mysterious nature of the sky. In plain sight all day and all night, the sky is filled with fascinating things both big and bright that are impossible to touch and nearly impossible to experience. An interest in this topic can branch off into other scientific and mathematical areas of inquiry. You can support an interest in astronomy by taking your child to the Milham Planetarium, in the Old Hopkins Observatory at Williams College, for a planetarium show run by astronomy students. The observatory’s high precision Zeiss Skymaster is capable of demonstrating phenomena including: retrograde motions of the planets, phases of the moon, the varying temperatures/colors of stars, locations of neighboring galaxies, the mythological figures and zodiacal signs ascribed to constellations, the Southern Hemisphere’s sky, comets, artificial satellites, and much more. 413-597-2188. Main Street. Williamstown, MA. (FREE)

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Hilltown Families’ list of Weekly Suggested Events is supported in part by a grant from the Amherst, Ashfield, Bernardston, Chester, Chesterfield, Conway, Erving, Heath, Holyoke, Ludlow, Montague, Montgomery, Pelham, Rowe, Russell, Shutesbury, South Hadley, Springfield, Ware, and Warwick Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

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