Berkshire Museum in 2008

Berkshire Museum to Present Public Programs at Lichtenstein Center, the YMCA, and the Berkshire Community College While Closed for Renovations in January & February

The Berkshire Museum will be closed for construction from January 1 through March 28, 2008. During this time Phase II of the renovation project, which includes the long-awaited installation of a climate control (HVAC) system, will be completed. During the construction period, the Berkshire Museum will present several public programs at other locations in Pittsfield, including an exhibition devoted to the Mohican people at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts.

Suggested Events 12/22/07 – 12/28/07

The Snowman

One my favorite films to watch during the holidays is The Snowman by Raymond Briggs, a 23 minute pencil-drawn animation. It’s the purity of The Snowman that I enjoy the most. The film is without words and set to the composition “Walking in the Air” by Howard Blake and performed by Peter Auty. With his wonderful illustrations and a timeless musical composition, Briggs brilliantly captures the innocence of a young boy’s imagination during the holiday season.

Somehow we’ve misplaced our copy of The Snowman and have had to get our holiday movie classic quota from outside sources … BUT, I was happy to find the video for view on-line. So if you’re looking for something to do with the kids, grab them and enjoy the magic of Raymond Briggs:

To add this video to your movie collection, click here to buy it from Amazon.

Thank you to this week’s Suggested Events Sponsor, Spirit of the Heart. Nancy has a couple of weekend classes for families available. Check them out and get the kids active!

  • Become a Sponsor

  • To find out how you or your business can help support Hilltown Families by becoming a sponsor, drop us an email or give us a call at 413.296.0096 for more information. We’re offering very reasonable rates throughout the holiday season. By having individuals in our community and area businesses become sponsors, Hilltown Families can continue to offer a weekly list of suggested events, a weekly podcast, updated resources, articles and much more.

    • Submit an Event

    If you have a family-friendly event or educational program happening in Western Massachusetts that you’d like to let us know about, or would like to submit your event to the Hilltown Families calendar of Suggested Events, email Sienna at Comments are warmly welcomed!

    Local forecast | Get directions | Free Museum Passes | School Closings & Delays

    Events Happening in the Hilltowns

    Saturday – 12/22


    8am – FAMILY RADIO – (Air Waves) While traveling around town, tune-in to WXOJ 103.3 FM in Northampton, MA, from 8-10am to hear fabulous family-friendly music on Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child. [All ages] (Free)

    Noon – SPORTS – (Amherst) Take the family to see the “big girls” play basketball at UMass (vs. Buffalo) in the Mullins Center. 413.545.0810 [Families] ($$)

    2pm – THEATER – (Stockbridge) The Berkshire Theatre Festival will be presenting Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol at the Unicorn Theatre. 413.298.5536 x33. [Families] ($$)

    2:30pm – FAMILY MUSIC – (Greenfield) Join the rocking kids music group The Pop Rockets at Barts Ice Cream for a family fun holiday show. They’ll be serving up new music and hot cocoa, along with a sing-a-long to traditional holiday music. [Families] (Free)

    4:30pm – HOLIDAY CAROLING – (Cummington) The CFC invites families to go caroling down Main Street, followed by hot chocolate and a potluck dinner. Caroling begins at the Cummington Community House. [Families] (Free)

    5pm-8pm – HOLIDAY HAYRIDES – (Florence) Look Park is offering a tour of their holiday lights display on a horse drawn hayride. [Families] (>$)

    5:30pm-8:30pm – SOLSTICE CELEBRATION – (Easthampton) Arcadia Nature Center & Wildlife Sanctuary will be hosting a Winter Solstice Celebration with candles, readings, music, bonfire & hot cider. 413.584.3009 [Famileis] (Free)

    6pm – HOLIDAY DISPLAY – (Florence) Join the community for the annual Luminaria Display in the Village of Florence. There will be a public display, holiday reception at the Civic Center and free hayrides. 413.320.2306 [Families] (Free, Benefit)

    6pm-8:30pm – SOLSTICE CELEBRATION – (Westhampton) A Full Moon Howl and Solstice Celebration will be held at Parsonage Field. There will be refreshments, bonfire, singing, sledding, and marshmallow roast. 413.527.1731 [Families] (Free)

    6:30pm-8:30pm – SOLSTICE CELEBRATION – (Ashfield) On the town green join other families for a Winter Solstice Celebration with candles, a bonfire, singing, story tellingand Morris Dancers. [Families] (Free)

    7:30pm – SPORTS – (Amherst) Take the family to see the “big boys” play basketball at UMass (vs. CCSU) in the Mullins Center. 413.545.0810 [Families] ($$)

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    Going Retro in Pittsfield

    Kids Stuff: Great Toys From Our Childhood

    A Retro Party to celebrate the exhibition Kid Stuff: Great Toys from Our Childhood at the Berkshire Museum in downtown Pittsfield, MA, will take place tonight (07/12/07) at 5pm.

    Kid Stuff highlights more than 40 of the most popular toys and games of the last 50 years. The exhibition was organized by the Berkshire Museum in 1999 and has been seen by more than 1 million people at museums across North America, and will be at the Berkshire Museum through September 3rd.

    Tonights party will feature a menu that combines casual picnic atmosphere with retro party fare.  Retro food that reflects the 1950s and 60s will be offered (read “unhealthy”), along crudite and fresh fruit (read “healthy”).

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    Hilltown Families Celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Birthday

    African-American Soul Food for Martin Luther Kig, Jr. birthday at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, MA. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

    Hilltown families enjoyed African-American soul food during the “I Have a Dream” community celebration at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, MA, on Monday, January 16th, honoring Martin Luther King, Jr.

    The “I Have A Dream” celebration was kicked off at 1 p.m. with a reading from King’s famous speech, followed by a performance by the popular Pittsfield step dance troupe, Youth Alive. Youth Alive is a troupe of young dancers from Pittsfield, who perform Hip-Hop, African, and Modern dances using their bodies as musical instruments to create a mix of sounds through feet stomping, hand clapping, and body movement.

    Making "I Have a Dream" posters. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

    A sampling of African-American soul food was offered to visitors following the performance. Children and parents enjoyed free samples of cornbread, collard greens seasoned with pork, and sweet potato pie.

    Children sat around tables and on the floors in the upstairs gallery to make “I Have A Dream” posters to be displayed around the gallery for the day or to take and hang at home. Statements like “Use your own mind and listen to yourself,” and “Speak up when you know you should,” were written along with illustrations. Wise words for such young minds!


    Kids marvel at the Savage Ancient Seas exhibit. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

    Currently on view at the museum is the exhibit Savage Ancient Seas, which presents the many gigantic forms of life that populated the prehistoric waters at the same time dinosaurs roamed the earth. The gallery is lit in hues of blue and green, creating an underwater ambience.

    Exploring undersea world of the late Cretaceous Period at Berkshire Museum. (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

    The exhibition explores the undersea world of the late Cretaceous Period, filled with huge carnivorous marine reptiles with double-hinged jaws and teeth in the middle of their palates, gigantic flesh-eating fish big enough to swallow an adult human whole, and more. With voracious appetites, incredible teeth, and gaping jaws, these creatures are unlike anything known in today’s world. Highlights include an Elasmosaur with a 30-foot long neck, the toothy scowl of a giant carnivorous fish (Xiphactinus), and the jaws of a Megalodon, or giant shark, along with other skeletons, fossils, and life replicas.

    Little Mermaid

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