Discover Fine Art: Legendary & Local

Legendary Artists Spark Interests in Local Art in Western MA

Gustav Klimt is one of the most significant figures of the Symbolist movement and created some of the most recognizable paintings of the fin de siecle in Central Europe, especially his sumptuous golden 1907 piece “The Kiss.” Something of an eccentric, Klimt wore nothing but long, flowing robes when he worked and his studio was filled with cats. In an ill-advised experiment, Klimt covered his sketchbook with cat urine, believing that it would act as a fixative. It did not, and the stinking sketchbook was literally and figuratively “consigned to the dustbin of history.” Want to learn more about Gustav Klimt? Here is a brief introduction to Gustav Klimt’s life and some of his paintings:

Want to learn more about fine art and amazing artists via local resources? Check out our post, Local Resources Support Community-Based Studies of Art, for opportunities to support your interests and education in art!

Learn Local. Play Local.: Block Party to Poetry Festival. Chili Peppers to Pollinators.

Community-Based Education Highlights
for Western Massachusetts

Hispanic Heritage MonthPuerto Rican ParadeMardi Gras ParadeRural HeritageHarvest FestivalAgricultural FairLocal HeritageGuided ToursHistorical MuseumTextile HistoryIndustrial HistoryFashion HistoryCooking for TeensColonial CookingFarm FestivalRosh HashanahApple PickingCorn MazeChili PeppersHawk MigrationMonarch ButterfliesTagging ButterfliesBioblitzSilk WormsPollinatorsDinosaursCitizen ScienceBiologyAstronomyTextilesCommunity GatheringBlock PartyCommunity MealCreative Free-PlaySafetyLanguage ArtsRural Public ArtExperiential ArtPop CulturePoetryDate NightParenting WorkshopFilm StudiesMusic StudiesFamily PodcastCajun MusicGrassroots MusicKirtanCanoeing

These are just a few of the community-based education (CBEdu) highlights we featured this week in our eNewsletter for the week, September 14-20, 2019. Click through, peruse our list, and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play! ♥ Want to have our highlights and spotlights delivered to your inbox every Thursday? Click here to subscribe!


Learn Local. Play Local. is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Buckland, Deerfield, Gill, Hadley, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne Southampton, Tolland, and Westhampton Cultural Councils, local agencies that are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: September 14-27, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Western Massachusetts is rich in learning opportunities to supplement the interests of children, teens, and lifelong learners! Hilltown Families Class Directory features classes, lessons, enrichment programs, and membership opportunities across the region and throughout the year. Our Class Directory makes it easier to find these gems while connecting families with resources that support their interests and education, including theater, music, dance, art, and much more. — Have a class, private lesson, or program you’d like to include in our directory?
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Play School

The Bloom Family Center is a unique childcare and early education environment in Northampton, MA. Their inclusive Play School program provides working parents flexible drop-in childcare for all ages. Bloom’s approach includes low child to caregiver ratios and a gentle play-to-learn model that reflects Montessori, Waldorf, and attachment parenting styles, integrating a natural learning curriculum designed to encourage and support skill-building, cooperation, and empathy across all age tiers. To schedule a tour or claim a free day pass, call 413-341-2184 or email familycenter@thebloomcommunity.org. For more information, visit online at www.thebloomcommunity.org. All September 2019 signups get 30% off their first month’s membership fees!

Field Trips

Expand your classroom at the Springfield Museums. With 5 museums to mine for information and activities, the Springfield Museums does what few others can—combine art, history, science, and Dr. Seuss into fun-filled, engaging experiences that reinforce critical thinking & observation skills through inquiry-based learning. The Museums offer a broad range of school programs for all grades and interest levels, and all programs link directly to the MA State Curriculum Frameworks and help students prepare for standardized testing. Learn more at SpringfieldMuseums.org/groups/school. Fall Field Trip Discount: Visit between Oct 1 & Dec 31 for $1 off per student when booking 2+ programs. Contact 413-263-6800 x322 or fieldtrips@springfieldmuseums.org.

Nonotuck Community School is accepting applications for children 15 mos. to 5 years for a September start date in their 12-month program. Open from 7:30am-5:30pm and located in Northampton, Nonotuck has well-appointed classrooms, daily access to indoor and outdoor play spaces an art studio, yoga instruction, Kaboom! Imagination Play equipment, gardening & more. The curriculum is play-based and impaired by progressive early childhood education theory. A parent cooperative, Nonotuck emphasizes community, emotional intelligence, and resilience, and provides ample opportunities for cognitive, artistic, social, emotional, and physical development throughout the school day. Contact info@nonotuck.org, 413-586-5996, or online at www.nonotuck.org.

Fall Sales

Shop local and smart! Stock up and save at River Valley Co-op this Fall at their amazing sale events. Get huge deals on full case discounts and more. September 4 -17, Stock Up & Save with Co-Op Basics: 10% off over 300 everyday items and savings on cases. September 18-October 1, Squirrel Away Savings: Great deals on items perfect for the pantry or freezer. Stock up and enjoy them for months to come! For information on these amazing sales and more, visit River Valley Co-op online at www.rivervalley.coop or call 413-584-2665. Or better yet, stop by! Open from 8am-10pm. River Valley Co-op is located at 330 North King St. in Northampton.

Sep 14

The Hitchcock Center for the Environment invites the community to Pollinator Celebration Day on Saturday, Sept 14, 10am-2pm in Amherst. Family activities include face painting, a pollinator scavenger hunt, and a monarch migration obstacle course. See live butterflies from Magic Wings. Learn how to tag monarchs, as a citizen scientist. Make pennants and streamers, or bring your own pollinator costume for marching in the pollinator parade! Learn from Western Mass Pollinator Network how to make gardens friendly to pollinators and take home milkweed seeds! Bring a picnic, buy a Crooked Stick pop, and stay for the whole event. Rain or shine. For schedule & tickets, visit www.hitchcockcenter.org or call 413-256-6006. Sponsored by Shumway Services.

Sep 14 & 15

The Pioneer Valley’s hottest farm festival is back! Kitchen Garden Farm’s annual Chilifest is a celebration of hot peppers and all things spicy on Saturday, September 14th & Sunday, September 15th from 12noon-5pm at Mike’s Maze in Sunderland, MA. Enjoy great live music, local brews, and spicy food all weekend long! Try some of the world’s hottest peppers grown right here in Sunderland. Taste and vote in the Chili Cook-Off Saturday and Hot Sauce Competition Suhttps://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48624620286_4653d3cfc4_m.jpgnday, and check out the new Hot Sauce Alley featuring local hot sauce makers. Plus, chef demos, DIY pickles and button making, chili crowns and pepper pops, and fun for all ages. Tickets and the full schedule of events at kitchengardenfarm.com/chilifest.

Sep 19

The 8th Annual Celebrate Amherst Block Party returns to downtown Amherst on Thursday, September 19 from 5-9pm. This free, fun street party features something for young & old. Two stages of music, acrobats on the high wire, demonstrations, and fun activities presented by downtown businesses & community groups, including the Poetry Vending Machine at the Emily Dickinson Museum table. Shoot hoops with athletes from UMass and Amherst College Basketball Teams. Marvel at the incredible acrobats in the air and on the ground. Sample delicious food from downtown restaurants & cafes set up along the street. The Amherst Block Party is a great event for the whole family to enjoy while welcoming in the fall. For more info, visit www.amherstdowntown.com.

Sep 19-22

Discover the fun of poetry during the 7th Annual Amherst Poetry Festival! The Festival features family-friendly readings and workshops around Amherst from September 19-22. Workshops include “Drawing Poems and Writing Pictures: A Workshop for Children and Adults” and “Calling All Poets!” a workshop for writers of all ages who wish to spend an afternoon writing poetry in Emily Dickinson’s garden. Advance registration for some of these events is strongly suggested. Visit their website for more information and to register for these and other events: www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org.

Sep 28

The second annual Arcadia Folk Festival returns on September 28th with Dar Williams, Anaïs Mitchell, Martin Sexton, and many more! This outdoor fall musical event will bring the community together around music in the heart of the Pioneer Valley to celebrate 75 years of Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary. Little Roots and The Mammals will perform music for the entire family. There will be nature activities, nature arts and craft projects, and a nature walk just for kids. The festival will also feature the best in local food vendors and Makers Market craft vendors making work inspired by nature or environmentally friendly / up-cycled art. Kids 10 and under are free! Tickets: www.arcadiafolkfest.com.

CyclePottery Wheel Throwing and Handbuilding Classes. Florence, MA ♦ Kids, Teens, and Adults! Join new friends and neighbors this Fall for Wheel Throwing and Hand Building classes at CyclePottery, beginning the second week in September. Fall/Winter session starts in late October. All levels of instruction are offered. Holiday & Vacation Workshops, Weekend Workshops, Private Lessons, Birthday Parties, Friends’ Night Out, and Cycle Sampler Classes are all offered throughout the year and upon request. For more information, visit their website or on Instagram: @CyclePottery. For questions and inquiries, send an email to cyclepottery01062@gmail.com. 413-333-8893. www.cyclepottery.com.

Barrington Stage Company. Pittsfield, MA. ♦ The Barrington Stage Company Education Department mission is to awaken the minds, imaginations, and creative power of children, teenagers, and young adults by providing opportunities to experience the joy of live theatre as performers, writers, technicians, and audience members. KidsAct! & TeensAct! are summer camps for ages 7–14 to create new musical plays. KidsAct! Jr. is in the fall and spring for ages 4–6. Auditions for Youth Theatre are in January, which extends the professionalism of an Equity production to local youth, 13-19, with performances in summer. The renowned Playwright Mentoring Project starts in October, for local young people, 13–19, to create plays based on their lives. More info: barringtonstageco.org/education-bsc

Experience the very best with a YMCA in Greenfield Family Membership. When you and your family become members of the YMCA in Greenfield, you become part of Y family; full of caring members and dedicated, supportive staff. Your membership represents an investment in your family, as well as the mission of our Y; as they Y seeks to serve both members and the community, by enhancing the quality of life in Franklin County. Find your healthy – find your community – find yourself – at your YMCA in Greenfield. Free ChildWatch for ages 8 week-7 years. Free Game Room fun for children ages 6+. Fun Family events on Friday nights and Sunday afternoons at no extra cost. Free Dodgeball & Floor Hockey for ages 6-10. Discounts on summer camps, classes, and more! 413-773-3646. info@ymcaingreenfield.org. ymcaingreenfield.org.


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
September 14-27, 2019

Saturday, Sept 14Sunday, Sept 15
Monday, Sept 16Tuesday, Sept 17Wednesday, Sept 18
Thursday, Sept 19Friday, Sept 20

Saturday, Sept 21Sunday, Sept 22
Monday, Sept 23Tuesday, Sept 24Wednesday, Sept 25
Thursday, Sept 26Friday, Sept 27

Subscribe to Our Weekly eNewsletterAdvertising & Partnership Opportunities
Class DirectoryPreschool DirectoryBirthday Party Venue Directory
Cultural ItinerariesMuseum PassesFarmers’ MarketsStoryhour & Playgroups
Suggest an Eventen Español

Read the rest of this entry »

Annual Event: Berkshire Bioblitz

Annual Event Support Interests in Ecology, Zoology, Biology, and More!

Calling all amateur biologists: Mid-September is the time for the annual Berkshire Bioblitz! During a 24 hour period, teams of participants accompanied by an expert scientist will explore Springside Park, the largest municipal park in Pittsfield, MA, and see how many species they can find from a list. This is a great way to learn about local biology and get hands-on experience assisting with real scientific research. You’ll be amazed how much wildlife there is right under your nose. All ages welcome. Springside Park Conservancy. 413-499-7505. 58 Oak Hill Road. Pittsfield, MA.

Want to host your very own bioblitz? Resources for blitz-planning are available on the National Geographic website – the organization has provided everything from instructions for early planning to a suggested materials list!  A bioblitz can offer students a unique hands-on learning experience that will make them more aware of the amount of biodiversity in their neighborhood and will teach them to identify new species. Communities will benefit from the events as well – neighbors can gain a greater awareness of what’s in their backyards, and perhaps even become better connected to the natural world that surrounds them! For Western MA teachers, educators, and parents who are interested in learning more about using the outdoors as a living classroom, check out the Berkshire Museums Living Landscapes curriculum. Living Landscapes focuses on natural science but also includes connections to math, language arts, and visual arts, and is a terrific local resource.

Conversation Highlights: The Sunday Evening Edition, September 8, 2019

Learn Local. Play Local.: Art Festival to Guided Hikes. Apple Picking to Corn Maze.

Community-Based Education Highlights
for Western Massachusetts

PlacemakingSense Of PlaceCreative PlacemakingMardi Gras ParadeCommunity CelebrationLawn ConcertOutdoor FilmCommunity MealArt FestivalChalk FestivalStreet FestivalLocal HeritageHistory MuseumMuseum AdventuresBlacksmithGuided ToursAgricultural FairCounty FairKids ConcertPuppetryPuppet ShowYo-YoComputer ScienceRobotsSTEMArchitecturePerennial GardeningCanalsCivicsGeologyAstronomyButterfliesBeekeepingWoolley BearsLobsterChickensApple PickingCulture StudiesPaganismGreek CultureMusic StudiesSymphonyVan GoghPicture Book ArtsChalk ArtArt InstallationBotanical IllustratingFigure DrawingHat Design

These are just a few of the community-based education (CBEdu) highlights we featured this week in our eNewsletter for the week, September 7-13, 2019. Click through, peruse our list, and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play! ♥ Want to have our highlights and spotlights delivered to your inbox every Thursday? Click here to subscribe!


Learn Local. Play Local. is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Buckland, Deerfield, Gill, Hadley, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne Southampton, Tolland, and Westhampton Cultural Councils, local agencies that are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: September 7-20, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Western Massachusetts is rich in learning opportunities to supplement the interests of children, teens, and lifelong learners! Hilltown Families Class Directory features classes, lessons, enrichment programs, and membership opportunities across the region and throughout the year. Our Class Directory makes it easier to find these gems while connecting families with resources that support their interests and education, including theater, music, dance, art, and much more. — Have a class, private lesson, or program you’d like to include in our directory? More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Auditions Sep 13 – 15

Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater (ALSCT) announces auditions for Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical! Auditions will take place September 13-15 at the Bangs Community Center in Amherst, MA. For an audition appointment, call LSSE at 413-259-3065. This Tony Award-winning musical, based on the novel by the “brilliantly batty” Roald Dahl, will be presented with lavish sets and costumes, a full live orchestra, and enthusiastic audiences to fill the 600-seat UMass Bowker Auditorium for 9 performances in January 2020. Actors, singers, and dancers ages 7-107 are encouraged to audition! For more info about auditions, including character descriptions and audition music and readings, visit www.alsct.org/auditions or contact producer@alsct.org.

Play School

The Bloom Family Center is a unique childcare and early education environment in Northampton, MA. Their inclusive Play School program provides working parents flexible drop-in childcare for all ages. Bloom’s approach includes low child to caregiver ratios and a gentle play-to-learn model that reflects Montessori, Waldorf, and attachment parenting styles, integrating a natural learning curriculum designed to encourage and support skill-building, cooperation, and empathy across all age tiers. To schedule a tour or claim a free day pass, call 413-341-2184 or email familycenter@thebloomcommunity.org. For more information, visit online at www.thebloomcommunity.org. All September 2019 signups get 30% off their first month’s membership fees!

Fall Sales

Shop local and smart! Stock up and save at River Valley Co-op this Fall at their amazing sale events. Get huge deals on full case discounts and more. September 4 -17, Stock Up & Save with Co-Op Basics: 10% off over 300 everyday items and savings on cases. September 18-October 1, Squirrel Away Savings: Great deals on items perfect for the pantry or freezer. Stock up and enjoy them for months to come! For information on these amazing sales and more, visit River Valley Co-op online at www.rivervalley.coop or call 413-584-2665. Or better yet, stop by! Open from 8am-10pm. River Valley Co-op is located at 330 North King St. in Northampton.

Sep 7 & 8

September brings a great line up at events at The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA. Mister G, the bilingual rock star, will get you dancing and share and sign his new book, Señorita Mariposa, on Saturday, September 7 at 11am. Reservations are recommended. On Sunday, September 8 at 1pm join their book party with Mac Barnett and Greg Pizzoli who will showcase their new early reader series, Hi Jack! Young readers will love Barnett’s snappy text, while aspiring artists will enjoy Pizzoli’s ‘How to Draw’ segments at the end of each book. Book signing to follow. Plus, enjoy artmaking, scavenger hunts, storytimes and three galleries of exceptional picturebook art. For more information, please visit www.carlemuseum.org.

Sep 14

The Hitchcock Center for the Environment invites the community to Pollinator Celebration Day on Saturday, Sept 14, 10am-2pm in Amherst. Family activities include face painting, a pollinator scavenger hunt, and a monarch migration obstacle course. See live butterflies from Magic Wings. Learn how to tag monarchs, as a citizen scientist. Make pennants and streamers, or bring your own pollinator costume for marching in the pollinator parade! Learn from Western Mass Pollinator Network how to make gardens friendly to pollinators and take home milkweed seeds! Bring a picnic, buy a Crooked Stick pop, and stay for the whole event. Rain or shine. For schedule & tickets, visit www.hitchcockcenter.org or call 413-256-6006. Sponsored by Shumway Services.

Sep 14 & 15

The Pioneer Valley’s hottest farm festival is back! Kitchen Garden Farm’s annual Chilifest is a celebration of hot peppers and all things spicy on Saturday, September 14th & Sunday, September 15th from 12noon-5pm at Mike’s Maze in Sunderland, MA. Enjoy great live music, local brews, and spicy food all weekend long! Try some of the world’s hottest peppers grown right here in Sunderland. Taste and vote in the Chili Cook-Off Saturday and Hot Sauce Competition Suhttps://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48624620286_4653d3cfc4_m.jpgnday, and check out the new Hot Sauce Alley featuring local hot sauce makers. Plus, chef demos, DIY pickles and button making, chili crowns and pepper pops, and fun for all ages. Tickets and the full schedule of events at kitchengardenfarm.com/chilifest.

Sep 19

The 8th Annual Celebrate Amherst Block Party returns to downtown Amherst on Thursday, September 19 from 5-9pm. This free, fun street party features something for young & old. Two stages of music, acrobats on the high wire, demonstrations, and fun activities presented by downtown businesses & community groups, including the Poetry Vending Machine at the Emily Dickinson Museum table. Shoot hoops with athletes from UMass and Amherst College Basketball Teams. Marvel at the incredible acrobats in the air and on the ground. Sample delicious food from downtown restaurants & cafes set up along the street. The Amherst Block Party is a great event for the whole family to enjoy while welcoming in the fall. For more info, visit www.amherstdowntown.com.

Sep 28

The second annual Arcadia Folk Festival returns on September 28th with Dar Williams, Anaïs Mitchell, Martin Sexton, and many more! This outdoor fall musical event will bring the community together around music in the heart of the Pioneer Valley to celebrate 75 years of Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary. Little Roots and The Mammals will perform music for the entire family. There will be nature activities, nature arts and craft projects, and a nature walk just for kids. The festival will also feature the best in local food vendors and Makers Market craft vendors making work inspired by nature or environmentally friendly / up-cycled art. Kids 10 and under are free! Tickets: www.arcadiafolkfest.com.

Start – ing Sep 17

Nerissa Nields Local Chorus. Northampton, MA ♦ Nerissa Nields runs a Local Chorus for ages 5-13, a performance group in 3-part harmony. Rehearsals are Tuesdays from 4-4:45pm at The Montessori School of Northampton starting September 17, 2019, and running for 15 weeks through MLK day (no meetings on school holidays). Cost: $225. For older kids who want a challenge, Nerissa offers Focus Chorus, a four-part harmony group for ages 11-16. Meetings are Tuesday evenings from 7:15-8:15pm in Little Blue Studio in Northampton. Cost is $265 for 15 weeks, starting September 17, 2019. nerissanields.com

CyclePottery Wheel Throwing and Handbuilding Classes. Florence, MA ♦ Kids, Teens, and Adults! Join new friends and neighbors this Fall for Wheel Throwing and Hand Building classes at CyclePottery, beginning the second week in September. Fall/Winter session starts in late October. All levels of instruction are offered. Holiday & Vacation Workshops, Weekend Workshops, Private Lessons, Birthday Parties, Friends’ Night Out, and Cycle Sampler Classes are all offered throughout the year and upon request. For more information, visit their website or on Instagram: @CyclePottery. For questions and inquiries, send an email to cyclepottery01062@gmail.com. 413-333-8893. www.cyclepottery.com.

Barrington Stage Company. Pittsfield, MA. ♦ The Barrington Stage Company Education Department mission is to awaken the minds, imaginations, and creative power of children, teenagers, and young adults by providing opportunities to experience the joy of live theatre as performers, writers, technicians, and audience members. KidsAct! & TeensAct! are summer camps for ages 7–14 to create new musical plays. KidsAct! Jr. is in the fall and spring for ages 4–6. Auditions for Youth Theatre are in January, which extends the professionalism of an Equity production to local youth, 13-19, with performances in summer. The renowned Playwright Mentoring Project starts in October, for local young people, 13–19, to create plays based on their lives. More info: barringtonstageco.org/education-bsc

Celtic Heels & Devine Dance in Greenfield, MA. Celtic Heels offers more than just a dance class. Their goal is to foster a love of both dance and life. They offer empowerment, optimism, and confidence in their growing dancers. They are a performance school with a focus on teamwork where each student is allowed to progress at their own comfort level while being challenged along the way. Their class offerings in Irish Dance, Ballet, and Tap set a solid foundation for rhythm, balance, extension, and strength that can be applicable in many other activities. Classes offered on Tuesdays & Thursdays in Greenfield. Information and registration: 413-475-3353; celticheels@gmail.com; www.CelticHeelsDance.com.

Nonotuck Community School is accepting applications for children 15 mos. to 5 years for a September start date in their 12-month program. Open from 7:30am-5:30pm and located in Northampton, Nonotuck has well-appointed classrooms, daily access to indoor and outdoor play spaces an art studio, yoga instruction, Kaboom! Imagination Play equipment, gardening & more. The curriculum is play-based and impaired by progressive early childhood education theory. A parent cooperative, Nonotuck emphasizes community, emotional intelligence, and resilience, and provides ample opportunities for cognitive, artistic, social, emotional, and physical development throughout the school day. Contact info@nonotuck.org, 413-586-5996, or online at www.nonotuck.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
September 7-20, 2019

Saturday, Sept 7Sunday, Sept 8
Monday, Sept 9Tuesday, Sept 10Wednesday, Sept 11
Thursday, Sept 12Friday, Sept 13

Saturday, Sept 14Sunday, Sept 15
Monday, Sept 16Tuesday, Sept 17Wednesday, Sept 18
Thursday, Sept 19Friday, Sept 20

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Hilltown Families Class Directory Debut: 2019/2020

Change of Seasons Bring Nature, Art & STEM Discoveries

Creativity & Learning with Autumn Leaves!

Leaf collecting can alert children to the presence of many types of trees in their neighborhood, and provides them with some beautiful and all-natural materials with which to craft and create nature art!

With the end of summer comes back-to-school season, a time when notebooks, crayons, and homework planners can take over the place that flowers, tall grass, and vegetable gardens hold in our daily routines during the summer. As lush green plants change hues, it can be easy to let the change of seasons happen without engaging with the new exterior design that Mother Nature provides. The change of colors and landscape is, though, the perfect reason not to let early fall pass by unnoticed…

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100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: August 31-September 13, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Reserve your spot today!

It’s time to reserve your spot in Hilltown Families’ annual Class Directory! Advertise your class, enrichment program, or private lesson in the region’s go-to, online resource for community-based educational opportunities in Western Massachusetts! Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2019-2020 Class Directory which will featured classes, enrichment programs, and private lessons happening across Western Massachusetts for children, teens, and lifelong learners. Add your listing at any time.
Take advantage of our special advertising package (pdf)!
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Fall Sales

Shop local and smart! Stock up and save at River Valley Co-op this Fall at their three sale events. Get huge deals on full case discounts and more. August 21-September 3, Back to School Sale: Everything you need for back-to-school for you or your little ones. September 4 -17, Stock Up & Save with Co-Op Basics: 10% off over 300 everyday items and savings on cases. September 18-October 1, Squirrel Away Savings: Great deals on items perfect for the pantry or freezer. Stock up and enjoy them for months to come! For information on these amazing sales and more, visit River Valley Co-op online at www.rivervalley.coop or call 413-584-2665. Or better yet, stop by! Open from 8am-10pm. River Valley Co-op is located at 330 North King St. in Northampton.

Open House: Sep 4

Join Pioneer Valley Ballet for its 2019-2020 Season. PVB offers 11-week pre-professional ballet training sessions in the fall, winter, and spring, plus community dance classes for toddlers, children, teens, and adults. FALL KICKOFF: Fall Session begins September 9. Get to know PVB at its Open House on September 4. Then get excited for The Nutcracker at the “In a Nutshell” party on September 7. Join the cast: Nutcracker Community Auditions (ages 5-10) will also be held September 7, for performances December 13-15. No dance experience necessary. Pioneer Valley Ballet is located in the Eastworks Building at 116 Pleasant Street in Easthampton, MA. Visit them online to explore classes and events and to register. 413-527-6363 ♦ www.pioneervalleyballet.org

Start – ing Sep 17

Nerissa Nields Local Chorus. Northampton, MA ♦ Nerissa Nields runs a Local Chorus for ages 5-13, a performance group in 3-part harmony. Rehearsals are Tuesdays from 4-4:45pm at The Montessori School of Northampton starting September 17, 2019, and running for 15 weeks through MLK day (no meetings on school holidays). Cost: $225. For older kids who want a challenge, Nerissa offers Focus Chorus, a four-part harmony group for ages 11-16. Meetings are Tuesday evenings from 7:15-8:15pm in Little Blue Studio in Northampton. Cost is $265 for 15 weeks, starting September 17, 2019. nerissanields.com

Miss Leticia Music School. Amherst, MA Ukulele, Guitar, Bass, Drums, a Capella, and Voice lessons, all in one location for all ages. Beginning Groups include Beginning Ukulele I & II, Beginning Guitar, Beginning Rock Band, and Girls Rock Band. Intermediate/Advanced Groups include Ukulele, Guitar/Ukulele, Intermediate Boys Rock, Adv Girls Rock Band. Adult classes include Beginning & Intermediate Guitar, Beginning & Intermediate Ukulele, and Rock Band. Many more private and group lessons available. Teachers include Leticia Davies (Guitar/Ukulele, Voice); Rusty Daniels (Rock Guitar, Bass, Drums); Gruff Davies (Rock Band); Rhys Davies (Rock Band). After school, evening, and weekend classes. For complete schedule & to register: www.missleticia.commissleticiamusic@gmail.com

Celtic Heels & Devine Dance in Greenfield, MA. Celtic Heels offers more than just a dance class. Their goal is to foster a love of both dance and life. They offer empowerment, optimism, and confidence in their growing dancers. They are a performance school with a focus on teamwork where each student is allowed to progress at their own comfort level while being challenged along the way. Their class offerings in Irish Dance, Ballet, and Tap set a solid foundation for rhythm, balance, extension, and strength that can be applicable in many other activities. Classes offered on Tuesdays & Thursdays in Greenfield. Information and registration: 413-475-3353; celticheels@gmail.com; www.CelticHeelsDance.com.

The School for Contemporary Dance and Thought Youth Dance Program in Northampton is an all-inclusive movement program designed to ignite creativity, curiosity, and individuality in children and teens through a mutual love of moving our bodies! This program is intended to bring together students of all backgrounds in a safe space in which they can learn together and from another while doing what our bodies were made to do…move! Classes are offered for different ages and interests, and provide a structured platform for age-appropriate technique, improvisation, composition and play! SCDT Youth Dance is an ideal place for students of all levels interested in developing their knowledge of dance and movement, while having a whole lot of fun doing so. Learn more and enroll at www.scdtnoho.com.

Nonotuck Community School is accepting applications for children 15 mos. to 5 years for a September start date in their 12-month program. Open from 7:30am-5:30pm and located in Northampton, Nonotuck has well-appointed classrooms, daily access to indoor and outdoor play spaces an art studio, yoga instruction, Kaboom! Imagination Play equipment, gardening & more. The curriculum is play-based and impaired by progressive early childhood education theory. A parent cooperative, Nonotuck emphasizes community, emotional intelligence, and resilience, and provides ample opportunities for cognitive, artistic, social, emotional, and physical development throughout the school day. Contact info@nonotuck.org, 413-586-5996, or online at www.nonotuck.org.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
August 31-September 13, 2019

Saturday, Aug 31Sunday, Sept 1
Monday, Sept 2Tuesday, Sept 3Wednesday, Sept 4
Thursday, Sept 5Friday, Sept 6

Saturday, Sept 7Sunday, Sept 8
Monday, Sept 9Tuesday, Sept 10Wednesday, Sept 11
Thursday, Sept 12Friday, Sept 13

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Community-Meals: The Sunday BBQ!

Strengthening a Sense of Place through Community Barbeques

Throughout history, community has been built through the sharing of food. Shared throughout the world as a universal human need, food provides a common thread through which all people can be woven together. Community meals offer much to families regarding learning opportunities, supporting intergenerational engagement, storytelling, and establishing a shared history. An additional benefit of community meals is that the theme of food serves as a common interest for all those involved, providing a foundation upon which for further connections to be built. During the late summer, community harvest meals are great intergenerational opportunities to sit down with neighbors of all ages, making connections and nurturing relationships across the generations. Participating in a community meal does more than filling your belly… it strengthens the social fabric of the community by developing a sense of place in our children!

There are a few annual community harvest meals to check out in the late summer include the Plainfield Volunteer Fire Department annual community chicken barbecue. On the Sunday before Labor Day, dinner is served starting at 1pm and includes a 1⁄2 barbecued chicken, locally grown baked potato, corn on the cob, homemade cole slaw, dinner roll, slice of watermelon and a beverage. Behind the Shaw Memorial Library. Main Street. Plainfield, MA.

Mid-September is the annual Florence Public Chicken Barbecue Community! From 12-3pm, hosted by the Florence Civic and Business Association. 90 Park Street, Florence, MA.

If a public BBQ has you motivated to heat up the barbeque at home, here’s a bit of culinary inspiration to get you in the kitchen with your kids to help prep a delicious meal:

CBEdu Resource: Bees and Flowers

Native Species: Community-Based Educational Resources

Human beings have been harvesting honey and keeping hives for around nine thousand years. Traditional cultures in Africa, Northern Europe, Asia, and the Mediterranean have worshiped bee goddesses as a way of venerating these amazing creatures. In Lithuania, for instance, the traditional bee goddess is known as Austeja. It is said that in traditional Lithuanian communities, it is forbidden to argue or quarrel in the presence of a bee, and if one comes upon a dead bee, it is buried ceremonially. Closer to home, the custom of “telling the bees” was practiced as a tradition in early America, a custom brought over from Europe. After a death in the family, the beekeeper would “tell the bees” so they too could enter proper mourning. It was thought that otherwise the bees might not produce honey or leave the hive to pollinate our crops. — And why is it that bees are so revered across cultures and time? Could it be that their contributions towards pollination is vital to the survival of 80% of the world’s plant species? Bees and flowers have an amazingly close relationship. Flowers need bees to reproduce, and bees need flowers to feed their colonies. Take away one, and the other would disappear too. It begs the question: When it comes to evolution, which came first, the bees or the flowers?” Find out in this video by It’s Okay to Be Smart:

“Over the past 15 years, numerous colonies of bees have been decimated throughout the world, but the causes of this disaster remain unknown. Depending on the world region, 50% to 90% of all local bees have disappeared, and this epidemic is still spreading from beehive to beehive – all over the planet. Everywhere, the same scenario is repeated: billions of bees leave their hives, never to return. No bodies are found in the immediate surroundings, and no visible predators can be located.” Want to learn more? Check out a copy of More Than Honey from your local library, a documentary that explores the effects of colony collapse disorder, the phenomenon responsible for bees’ recent scarcity.

 

Rowan Jacobson wrote a book, published in 2008, called Fruitless Fall. He identifies multiple causes of stress to the bees, showing how they all work together to contribute to colony collapse. He also interviewed several beekeepers (some local to him in Vermont) who are having success at building stronger and more resilient colonies. Superb book, very readable and informative about bees in general, and groundbreaking in its approach to colony collapse.

Other resources to check out from your library include these titles: The Life and Times of the Honeybee [Ages 5+]; Honey Bees: Letters from the Hive [Ages 11+]; and The Backyard Beekeeper – Revised and Updated: An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden.


“Bee Song” written by Lui Collins, music by Lui Collins and Anand Nayak,
©2009 Lui Collins, Molly Gamblin Music/BMI and Dizzy Dog Music/ASCAP

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: August 24-September 6, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Reserve your spot today!

It’s time to reserve your spot in Hilltown Families’ annual Class Directory! Advertise your class, enrichment program, or private lesson in the region’s go-to, online resource for community-based educational opportunities in Western Massachusetts! Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2019-2020 Class Directory which will featured classes, enrichment programs, and private lessons happening across Western Massachusetts for children, teens, and lifelong learners. Add your listing at any time.
Take advantage of our special advertising package (pdf)!
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Fall Sales

Shop local and smart! Stock up and save at River Valley Co-op this Fall at their three sale events. Get huge deals on full case discounts and more. August 21-September 3, Back to School Sale: Everything you need for back-to-school for you or your little ones. September 4 -17, Stock Up & Save with Co-Op Basics: 10% off over 300 everyday items and savings on cases. September 18-October 1, Squirrel Away Savings: Great deals on items perfect for the pantry or freezer. Stock up and enjoy them for months to come! For information on these amazing sales and more, visit River Valley Co-op online at www.rivervalley.coop or call 413-584-2665. Or better yet, stop by! Open from 8am-10pm. River Valley Co-op is located at 330 North King St. in Northampton.

Aug 24

Ice Cream, Hot dogs, Tacos OH MY! The Look Park Food Truck Festival is back for it’s 3rd year on Saturday August 24th from 12pm to 6pm. 20+ Food trucks, music and more! Grab the kids and enjoy some of your favorite snacks or try something new! Entrance to Food Truck Festival is FREE! Vehicle entrance fee does apply. Visit www.lookpark.org or call 413-584-5457 for details.

Open House: Sep 4

Join Pioneer Valley Ballet for its 2019-2020 Season. PVB offers 11-week pre-professional ballet training sessions in the fall, winter, and spring, plus community dance classes for toddlers, children, teens, and adults. FALL KICKOFF: Fall Session begins September 9. Get to know PVB at its Open House on September 4. Then get excited for The Nutcracker at the “In a Nutshell” party on September 7. Join the cast: Nutcracker Community Auditions (ages 5-10) will also be held September 7, for performances December 13-15. No dance experience necessary. Pioneer Valley Ballet is located in the Eastworks Building at 116 Pleasant Street in Easthampton, MA. Visit them online to explore classes and events and to register. 413-527-6363 ♦ www.pioneervalleyballet.org

Miss Leticia Music School. Amherst, MA Ukulele, Guitar, Bass, Drums, a Capella, and Voice lessons, all in one location for all ages. Beginning Groups include Beginning Ukulele I & II, Beginning Guitar, Beginning Rock Band, and Girls Rock Band. Intermediate/Advanced Groups include Ukulele, Guitar/Ukulele, Intermediate Boys Rock, Adv Girls Rock Band. Adult classes include Beginning & Intermediate Guitar, Beginning & Intermediate Ukulele, and Rock Band. Many more private and group lessons available. Teachers include Leticia Davies (Guitar/Ukulele, Voice); Rusty Daniels (Rock Guitar, Bass, Drums); Gruff Davies (Rock Band); Rhys Davies (Rock Band). After school, evening, and weekend classes. For complete schedule & to register: www.missleticia.commissleticiamusic@gmail.com

The School for Contemporary Dance and Thought Youth Dance Program in Northampton is an all-inclusive movement program designed to ignite creativity, curiosity, and individuality in children and teens through a mutual love of moving our bodies! This program is intended to bring together students of all backgrounds in a safe space in which they can learn together and from another while doing what our bodies were made to do…move! Classes are offered for different ages and interests, and provide a structured platform for age-appropriate technique, improvisation, composition and play! SCDT Youth Dance is an ideal place for students of all levels interested in developing their knowledge of dance and movement, while having a whole lot of fun doing so. Learn more and enroll at www.scdtnoho.com.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
August 24-September 6, 2019

Saturday, Aug 24Sunday, Aug 25
Monday, Aug 26Tuesday, Aug 27Wednesday, Aug 28
Thursday, Aug 29Friday, Aug 30

Saturday, Aug 31Sunday, Sept 1
Monday, Sept 2Tuesday, Sept 3Wednesday, Sept 4
Thursday, Sept 5Friday, Sept 6

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Supporting Seasonal Learning in the Late Summer with Community-Based Educational Resources & Opportunities

Late Summer Resources & Opportunities that Support Seasonal Learning Through Community-Based Education

Photo credit: (c) Sienna Wildfield

For many, Labor Day marks the end of the summer, but warm days extend well beyond the first Monday in September. Take advantage of the full summer season by engaging in community-based resources that support your interests, education, and community values before the cold weather sets in.

Resources like conservation organizations, local waterways, harvest meals, and even cornfields are just a few resources that can support both self-directed and facilitated learning during these last few weeks of summer.

Read the rest of this entry »

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: August 17-30, 2019


Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Reserve your spot today!

It’s time to reserve your spot in Hilltown Families’ annual Class Directory! Advertise your class, enrichment program, or private lesson in the region’s go-to, online resource for community-based educational opportunities in Western Massachusetts! Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2019-2020 Class Directory which will featured classes, enrichment programs, and private lessons happening across Western Massachusetts for children, teens, and lifelong learners. Add your listing at any time.
Take advantage of our special advertising package (pdf)!
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Ice Cream, Hot dogs, Tacos OH MY! The Look Park Food Truck Festival is back for it’s 3rd year on Saturday August 24th from 12pm to 6pm. 20+ Food trucks, music and more! Grab the kids and enjoy some of your favorite snacks or try something new! Entrance to Food Truck Festival is FREE! Vehicle entrance fee does apply. Visit www.lookpark.org or call 413-584-5457 for details. 300 N Main St, Florence, MA.

Enjoy an hour of free kid-friendly fun with your lunch this August at River Valley Co-op in Northampton on their deck from 11am-12noon. Performances from different local organizations and performers include, Angora Bunnies! with Laurel Ledge Farm Fiber on August 21. Stop by, grab your favorite lunch from the deli, and come out to their deck for a delightful hour of music, art, literature, history, or nature. River Valley Co-op. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA.

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

Register now for Will Bike 4 Food, a cycling event to benefit The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The 9th annual event will start at the Lion’s Club Pavilion on Sunday, September 29, 2019. This event is a special opportunity for riders of all ages and riding abilities to enjoy a fun-filled day with other cyclists while helping to feed our neighbors in need. Choose the 10, 25, 50, or 100-mile route through the scenic Pioneer Valley. You can choose to ride as an individual or form a team. Participating cyclists are invited to stay for an After-Party at the finish line. Enjoy a cookout and craft beer, music, games, and more. Register now for the lowest fundraising minimum and to guarantee your free t-shirt. To register or donate, visit willbike4food.org.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories



LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
August 17-30, 2019

Saturday, Aug 17Sunday, Aug 18
Monday, Aug 19Tuesday, Aug 20Wednesday, Aug 21
Thursday, Aug 22Friday, Aug 23

Saturday, Aug 24Sunday, Aug 25
Monday, Aug 26Tuesday, Aug 27Wednesday, Aug 28
Thursday, Aug 29Friday, Aug 30

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Sing About Science and Math

University of Washington’s Sing About Science and Math Project: Songs for Teaching, Learning & Fun

For many young learners, rhythm and repetition can be a very effective way of learning new words and remembering the names of things. Children easily learn commonly sung songs with lyrics of all kinds, and we use their ability to learn lyrics as a way to share information. Take the ABC’s for example – it’s a song that we use to teach the letters of the English alphabet, it’s fun and easy to sing, and matching the names of letters to different parts of the rhythm helps to support children in remembering the order that the go in.

Songs don’t just have to be used to convey basic ideas to the youngest of learners, though – there are educational songs for kids of all ages and about all kinds of things! The University of Washington’s Sing About Science and Math Project offers an online database of over 7,000 songs that cover an immense variety of topics in technology, biology, environmental science, physics, chemistry, math, engineering, and medicine. The database, which has been growing since 2004, includes tunes for kids of all ages – meaning there are songs about the periodic table for kindergarteners, high school sophomores, graduate students, and grandparents, too, like this one by They Might Be Giants:

The site’s search function allows for parents and educators (and older students) to search by more than just topic… Read the rest of this entry »

Conversation Highlights: The Sunday Evening Edition, August 11, 2019

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: August 10-23, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Dead-line: Aug 30

Reserve your spot today!

It’s time to reserve your spot in Hilltown Families’ annual Class Directory! Advertise your class, enrichment program, or private lesson in the region’s go-to, online resource for community-based educational opportunities in Western Massachusetts! Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2019-2020 Class Directory which will featured classes, enrichment programs, and private lessons happening across Western Massachusetts for children, teens, and lifelong learners. Add your listing at any time.
Take advantage of our special advertising package (pdf)!
Deadline to register: August 30th.
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Wed in Aug

Enjoy an hour of free kid-friendly fun with your lunch this August at River Valley Co-op in Northampton on their deck from 11am-12noon. Performances from different local organizations and performers include: “Animal Tales from Around the World” songs and stories with folksinger & storyteller Tim Van Egmond on August 7; “Modern YoYoing with Team A2Z Science” Eric Koloski, world champion yoyoist on August 14 and LIVE ANIMALS! Angora Bunnies! with Laurel Ledge Farm Fiber on August 21. Stop by, grab your favorite lunch from the deli, and come out to their deck for a delightful hour of music, art, literature, history, or nature. River Valley Co-op. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

Sep 29

Register now for Will Bike 4 Food, a cycling event to benefit The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The 9th annual event will start at the Lion’s Club Pavilion on Sunday, September 29, 2019. This event is a special opportunity for riders of all ages and riding abilities to enjoy a fun-filled day with other cyclists while helping to feed our neighbors in need. Choose the 10, 25, 50, or 100-mile route through the scenic Pioneer Valley. You can choose to ride as an individual or form a team. Participating cyclists are invited to stay for an After-Party at the finish line. Enjoy a cookout and craft beer, music, games, and more. Register now for the lowest fundraising minimum and to guarantee your free t-shirt. To register or donate, visit willbike4food.org.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
August 10-23, 2019

Saturday, Aug 10Sunday, Aug 11
Monday, Aug 12Tuesday, Aug 13Wednesday, Aug 14
Thursday, Aug 15Friday, Aug 16

Saturday, Aug 17Sunday, Aug 18
Monday, Aug 19Tuesday, Aug 20Wednesday, Aug 21
Thursday, Aug 22Friday, Aug 23

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

Read the rest of this entry »

People-Watching! Supporting Language Arts, Theater & Community Awareness

Late-Summer People-Watching as Inspiration for Young Writers and Thespians

A fun way to learn about a local culture, people-watching can serve as a great tool for young writers and thespians too! The observations made in a particular context can help inspire or contribute to the development or portrayal of a character. Visit some of our suggested people-watching locations!

Inspiration can come in many forms for young writers and creators, and the sparks that ignite the creative process can sometimes come from unexpected places. Often, inspiration can come from experience, allowing works to be created as a result of personal experience, but other times, inspiration needs to come from external sources. A great (and always accessible) source of inspiration is people-watching – an activity that can lead to everything from laughter to critical and reflective observations about human nature.

People-watching is especially useful for young writers and thespians, as close observation of human behavior can help with character development in writing, and can help actors, directors, and costume designers draw from experience when portraying characters from a story. Best when done in a situation in which you are not directly involved, people-watching can allow those to participate to gather useful information about how people move and talk, as well as the choices that they make, the clothes that they wear, and the people who they associate with. People-watching can feel a bit like judging people, but when observations are made through careful, critical thought, they are much more useful than the snap judgments that are sometimes made at first glance, and an excellent way to develop an appreciation and acceptance of the wonderful diversity found in our communities. Read the rest of this entry »

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: August 3-16, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Class Directory

Dead-line: Aug 30

Reserve your spot today!

It’s time to reserve your spot in Hilltown Families’ annual Class Directory! Advertise your class, enrichment program, or private lesson in the region’s go-to, online resource for community-based educational opportunities in Western Massachusetts! Reach thousands of families in the region with our 2019-2020 Class Directory which will featured classes, enrichment programs, and private lessons happening across Western Massachusetts for children, teens, and lifelong learners. Add your listing at any time.
Take advantage of our special advertising package (pdf)!
Deadline to register: August 30th.
More Information. | Reserve a spot. | Submit your listing.

Bulletin Board

Aug 3-4

The Massachusetts Renaissance Faire is returning to the Cummington Fairgrounds on Aug 3 & 4. Enjoy all-day entertainment! Cheer for your favorite knight at the joust, watch as dancers flirt with fire, laugh with fairies, enjoy Renaissance music and much more. There are plenty of activities for children and adults to create memories together. Test your strength against a knight, listen to stories by an Auld Celt, shoot a real bow and arrow, and shop over 50 mystical vendors. Stay late on Saturday for their Adult-Only shows. Sunday, Aug 4 is Pet Day! They would love to see your well-behaved buddies at their faire. More info, including for overnight camping, at MassRenFaire.com.

Aug 3, 4, 6

Voted “Best Summer Theater,” PaintBox Theatre closes out its Sweet 16th Season by asking a prehistorically puzzling question, How Do Dinosaurs Go To School? Beloved Author Jane Yolen asks, “How Do Dinosaurs Go To School?” in her beloved children’s book. They’ve tasked themselves to try and answer that very question. PaintBox takes this ‘tail’ and twists it PaintBox style. Callum LaFrance tackles this feat, short arms, long neck, and all. Shows are: Aug 3, 10:30am & 1pm, Aug 4, 10:30am & 1pm, and Aug 6, 10:30am & 1pm at Williston Theater (18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA.) Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets (children under 2 are free.) paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

Wed in Aug

Enjoy an hour of free kid-friendly fun with your lunch this August at River Valley Co-op in Northampton on their deck from 11am-12noon. Performances from different local organizations and performers include: “Animal Tales from Around the World” songs and stories with folksinger & storyteller Tim Van Egmond on August 7; “Modern YoYoing with Team A2Z Science” Eric Koloski, world champion yoyoist on August 14 and LIVE ANIMALS! Angora Bunnies! with Laurel Ledge Farm Fiber on August 21. Stop by, grab your favorite lunch from the deli, and come out to their deck for a delightful hour of music, art, literature, history, or nature. River Valley Co-op. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

Sep 29

Register now for Will Bike 4 Food, a cycling event to benefit The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The 9th annual event will start at the Lion’s Club Pavilion on Sunday, September 29, 2019. This event is a special opportunity for riders of all ages and riding abilities to enjoy a fun-filled day with other cyclists while helping to feed our neighbors in need. Choose the 10, 25, 50, or 100-mile route through the scenic Pioneer Valley. You can choose to ride as an individual or form a team. Participating cyclists are invited to stay for an After-Party at the finish line. Enjoy a cookout and craft beer, music, games, and more. Register now for the lowest fundraising minimum and to guarantee your free t-shirt. To register or donate, visit willbike4food.org.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
August 3-16, 2019

Saturday, Aug 3Sunday, Aug 4
Monday, Aug 5Tuesday, Aug 6Wednesday, Aug 7
Thursday, Aug 8Friday, Aug 9

Saturday, Aug 10Sunday, Aug 11
Monday, Aug 12Tuesday, Aug 13Wednesday, Aug 14
Thursday, Aug 15Friday, Aug 16

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Summer Camping Adventures Promote Nature-Based Play and Learning

Summer Camping Adventures Promote Nature-Based Play and Learning

Camping is one of the most classic outdoor adventures of childhood, and thanks to the wealth of state parks and forests found locally, there are endless camping adventures to be had in western Massachusetts! From exposing young campers to sleeping outside to allowing children to experience all aspects of the local landscape, camping trips are full of meaningful experiences.

The long days and warm nights of summer provide the perfect conditions for family camping, a tradition that serves as one of childhood’s most classic summer adventures. Camping trips not only allow children to learn how to live outside of their homes, but provide them with the opportunity to engage in experiential learning about their surroundings during all hours of the day (and perhaps the night, too). From afternoon playtime in the woods to an evening of fireflies and campfires to the misty early morning hours that bring endless bird songs, camping trips offer ceaseless exposure to the sights, sounds, and smells of the world. As an added bonus, children who connect with their surroundings are many times more likely to practice environmentally friendly and conservation-minded behaviors as adults. Read the rest of this entry »

Fibonacci Sequence & Golden Ratio Drive Nature-Based Education

Nature’s Patterns Reveals Mathematical Reasoning

The Fibonacci sequence describes the pattern in which flowers fit the most seeds possible into their centers.

Nature is filled with patterns – spirals, in particular, are especially noticeable in species of plants and animals. Sunflowers, for example, seem to spiral their seeds from their centers in some sort of mathematical pattern. Snail shells, too, show growth rings that become gradually larger as they spiral away from the shell’s center. Evergreen cones, heads of broccoli and cauliflower, and tree branches all display noticeable iterations of this spiraling pattern, too.

The spirals that appear all around us are no accident of nature – while they’re beautiful to look at, their purpose is much more important than vanity alone. Beneath the aesthetically pleasing shapes of petals, seeds, and branches are two fascinating mathematical concepts that explain nature’s tendency to expand in spirals. Read the rest of this entry »

HFVS Rock and Keep Rolling Episode with Guest DJ, Tim Seston (Podcast/Radio Show)

Hilltown Family Variety Show

Listen to Podcast:

HFVS Rock and Keep Rolling Episode with Guest DJ, Tim Seston

Exploring a single word through music can uncover the many ways we use language on an everyday basis. In this episode of the HFVS, the word “roll” in Rock and Keep Rolling is used to describe the movement of waves, wheat fields, and a manatee.  It describes the fun of rolling down a hill to the more sophisticated meaning of letting something roll off you back.  A roll can be a food item, or a drum sequence, or quite simply the partner of rock. – www.frompagetoplay.com

Saturday from 9-10am & Sunday from 7-8am
July 27th & 28th 2019
WXOJ LP – 103.3 FM – Valley Free Radio
Northampton, MA

Featured Video: Tim Seston – “Here to Play”


 Archived Podcasts Radio  Facebook Twitter

Listen to Podcast:

PLAYLIST

  • Tim Seston – “Bring on the Thunder” [On a Roll]
  • Doobee Brothers – “Black Water” [Best of the Doobees]
  • Fran Friedman – “The Colors of the Earth” [Dreams for Tomorrow]
  • Justin Roberts – “Rolling Down the Hill” [Lemonade]
  • Tim Seston – “Rolling in the Mud” [Here to Play]
  • Little Richard – “On Top of Spaghetti” [A Child’s Celebration of Silliest Songs]
  • Karen K & the Jitterbugs – “Slow Roll” [Blue Bike Chronicles]
  • Dorothy Cresswell – “Mary Manatee” [More Songs for Curious Kids]
  • Keith Boynton – “Be Like a Duck” [Philadelphia Chickens]
  • Tim Seston – “Jelly and Coral” [On a Roll]
  • Andy Z – “This Land is Your Land” [Classic Songs & Traditional Tunes]
  • Ratboy Jr. – “Bill” [Champions of the Universe]
  • Wayne Potash – “Seven Nights to Rock” [Don’t Forget the Donut!]
  • Liz Buchanan – “Rockin in the Rabbit Hole” [Once Upon a Tune]
  • Uncle Devin – “Drum Roll Call” [Drum Tales!]
  • Tim Seston – “On a Roll” [On a Roll]

Original broadcast: June 15th & 16th, 2018

Save

Save

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Learn Local. Play Local.: Motorcycles to Skateboarding. Youth Theater to Family Concert.

Community-Based Education Highlights
for Western Massachusetts

Folk TraditionsSkillsharingPreserving FruitPotteryFarmingTextile ArtsAgricultural HistoryLocal HistoryTransportation HistoryAviationBucklandDeerfieldSpringfieldMiddle AgesRenaissance FairGather In FestivalBlock PartyArt WalkMusic FestivalFamily Outdoor ConcertLawn ConcertJazzKlezmer MusicMusical InstrumentsBotanyEcologyFernsBirdsNative SpeciesStargazingSolar SystemTheater StudiesAutobiographicalMusicalYouth TheaterClowningPuppet TheaterMarionettesGhostsLiterature in TranslationContemporary DanceReading to DogsCanoeingLabyrinthSkateboardingBaseballMotorcyclesJetsChessKnitting

These are just a few of the community-based education (CBEdu) highlights we featured this week in our eNewsletter for the week, July 27-Aug 2, 2019. Click through, peruse our list, and make plans to get out into your community and learn while you play! ♥ Want to have our highlights and spotlights delivered to your inbox every Thursday? Click here to subscribe!


Learn Local. Play Local. is supported in part by a grant from the Agawam, Buckland, Deerfield, Gill, Hadley, New Salem, Plainfield, Shelburne Southampton, Tolland, and Westhampton Cultural Councils, local agencies that are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: July 27-August 9, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Bulletin Board

Jul 27-28 & Aug 3-4


The Massachusetts Renaissance Faire is coming to the Cummington Fairgrounds July 27 & 28 and Aug 3 & 4. Enjoy all-day entertainment! Cheer for your favorite knight at the joust, watch as dancers flirt with fire, laugh with fairies, enjoy Renaissance music and much more. There are plenty of activities for children and adults to create memories together. Test your strength against a knight, listen to stories by an Auld Celt, shoot a real bow and arrow, and shop over 50 mystical vendors. Stay late on Saturday for their Adult-Only shows. Sunday, July 28 is Hilltown Day! Hilltown Kids (0-15) are FREE with purchase of an adult ticket (Limit 2 children/adult pass. Adult ID required). More info, including for overnight camping, at MassRenFaire.com.

Aug 1

On Thursday, August 1, from 5:30-7:30pm, get set for two amazing bands with an international fan-base that call the Pioneer Valley home! Latin Grammy winner Mister G travels internationally with the message of protecting our planet, integrating blues, soul, and roots to his repertoire for a foot-stompin’ good time. In The Nick of Time is a group of talented musicians for all ages, described as “Jack Black meets Dr. Seuss.” This annual family concert is always a packed show. Come out and enjoy a new location of Amherst Downtown’s historic town common. Bart’s Ice Cream Cart will be on hand with delicious samples to purchase. Go to amherstdowntown.com and follow the tab for Free Summer Concert. Check the weather and website.

Aug 3, 4, 6

Voted “Best Summer Theater,” PaintBox Theatre closes out its Sweet 16th Season by asking a prehistorically puzzling question, How Do Dinosaurs Go To School? Beloved Author Jane Yolen asks, “How Do Dinosaurs Go To School?” in her beloved children’s book. They’ve tasked themselves to try and answer that very question. PaintBox takes this ‘tail’ and twists it PaintBox style. Callum LaFrance tackles this feat, short arms, long neck, and all. Shows are: Aug 3, 10:30am & 1pm, Aug 4, 10:30am & 1pm, and Aug 6, 10:30am & 1pm at Williston Theater (18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA.) Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets (children under 2 are free.) paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 27-August 9, 2019

Saturday, July 27Sunday, July 28
Monday, July 29Tuesday, July 30Wednesday, July 31
Thursday, Aug 1Friday, Aug 2

Saturday, Aug 3Sunday, Aug 4
Monday, Aug 5Tuesday, Aug 6Wednesday, Aug 7
Thursday, Aug 8Friday, Aug 9

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

Read the rest of this entry »

Monarch Butterflies: The Life & Science

Monarch Butterflies: Migratory Patterns & Citizen Scientists Opportunities

Tagged Monarch Butterfly

What to organize a Monarch Butterfly tagging effort? Monarch Watch has instructions and kits with tags for tracking.

Monarch butterflies make perhaps the most epic of all migratory journeys. Though their long trek can sometimes take up to four generations to complete, it spans an almost unbelievably large portion of North America. The butterflies begin high in the mountains of southwestern Mexico, and, come springtime, gradually work their way as far north as Saskatchewan, Canada and as far east as Maine and the southernmost parts of New Brunswick. The distinctive black-and-orange butterflies lay their eggs along the way, and depend on the availability of milkweed-filled habitat throughout their journey. While no one butterfly makes the round trip from Mexico to Maine and back again, the pattern of monarch movement across the continent is incredibly sophisticated and, at times, beautiful.

Because the monarch needs such specific habitat – young monarch caterpillars eat only milkweed – the opportunity to stop and lay eggs has become much more limited than it once was. Due to human development of land and genetically engineered farming techniques, meadows with milkweed can be rare, and the butterflies must try much harder in order to complete the full cycle of their journey. In order to track the changes in population and the preferred landing grounds of monarchs, a number of Citizen Scientist initiatives have been developed. All around the United States (with the exception of states west of the Rockies), butterflies are being tracked and studied – and your family can help as a citizen scientist…

Read the rest of this entry »

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: July 20-August 2, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With nearly 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Bulletin Board

July 20 & 21

Blast into the Past: Live a Day in 1805 at the William Cullen Bryant Homestead on Saturday, July 20 and Sunday, July 21 from 10am-4pm. Experience rural living, home life, and community in Western MA from the 19th century as the Homestead recreates a 19th-century farm community for families to discover and explore. Participate in a barter economy and learn about the various skills and trades of the early 1800’s. Meet different 19th-century craftspeople, tradespeople, and farm workers as they demonstrate historic skills such as blacksmithing, shoemaking, straw braiding, cooking, timber framing, and more! William Cullen Bryant Homestead. 413-634-2244. 207 Bryant Road, Cummington, MA.

Jul 20

Did you know Dickinson wrote around 100 poems about bees? Join us at the Emily Dickinson Museum(280 Main St., Amherst, MA) on July 20 for “Buccaneers of Buzz,” their annual Children’s Circus! This family-friendly event celebrates the important role pollinators played in Dickinson’s poetry and in our lives today. Learn more about the continued significance of pollinators from educators from Book & Plow Farm, crafts, games, and an interactive, musical puppet show with Tom Knight at 1:30pm. Perfect for children ages 3 to 10, this event is $5 for families or free for Friends of the Museum. Stop by between 12 and 3:30pm to see what all the buzz is about! For more information, email EDMprograms@emilydickinsonmuseum.org or visit their website.

Jul 20, 21, Aug 7

Voted “Best Summer Theater,” PaintBox Theatre celebrates its Sweet 16th Season by hitting the high seas with their favorite band of pirates, Everybody Wants To Be A Pirate! They areeeeeeee back with more jokes, more treasure, and more shenanigINs-and-OUTs. Kelsey Flynn, Troy Mercier, and Myka Plunkett will be holding strong this summer on deck with all new jokes. You’re always welcome to join the crew for the third installment of the saga that is PaintBox PIRATES! Shows are: July 20, 10:30am & 1pm, July 21, 10:30am & 1pm, and again on Wed., Aug 7, 10:30am & 1pm at Williston Theater (18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA.) Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets (children under 2 are free.) paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

Jul 23, Jul 30, & Aug 6

Join us at Look Park every Tuesday starting on June 25th until August 6th for the Franklin King Children’s Series! Shows start at 10am and are $5 per person. Steve Corning will get you jazzed to start the day on July 23rd with his juggling act. On July 30th, Bowey the Clown will have everyone laughing and on August 6th, Ed the Magician will be back to dazzle families once again! For more information visit: www.lookpark.org or call 413-584-5457.

Jul 24 – Aug 10

Barrington Stage Company: Ragtag Theater’s Hansel and Gretel. Book by Sam Lafrage; Music and Lyrics by Lewis Flinn and Sam Lafrage. For ages 3 to 103, Ragtag Theatre Company (creators of the smash hits Cinderella and Rapunzel) is creating a hilarious, interactive, fractured musical version of the well-known fairy tale Hansel and Gretel, featuring Barrington Stage Company’s Youth Theatre Company in Pittsfield, MA. This slap-happy, reimagined romp through this beloved fairy tale is guaranteed to be a great time for all! Dates: July 24–August 10. Tickets: 413-236-8888. barringtonstageco.org

Aug 4

Join The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts on August 4 from 5-8:30pm for a special Cider Pairing Dinner fundraising event! Dine al fresco while enjoying the breathtaking views at Apex Orchards in Shelburne, MA, with dinner prepared by Wheelhouse paired with locally made hard cider by Artifact Cider Project and Headwater Cider. Tractor tours of the orchard and grounds included! Visit foodbankwma.org/cider-pairing-dinner for tickets and more information.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 20-August 2, 2019

Saturday, July 20Sunday, July 21
Monday, July 22Tuesday, July 23Wednesday, July 24
Thursday, July 25Friday, July 26

Saturday, July 27Sunday, July 28
Monday, July 29Tuesday, July 30Wednesday, July 31
Thursday, Aug 1Friday, Aug 2

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

Read the rest of this entry »

100+ Suggested Events in Western MA: July 13-26, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With nearly 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Featured Events

Jul 12 – 14

Green River Festival, Western Massachusetts’ most family-friendly music festival, happens at Greenfield Community College on July 12-14 in Greenfield, MA. Kids 10 and under are always free! In addition to an incredible lineup of music for adults featuring Lucinda Williams, The Wood Brothers, The Devil Makes Three, Rhiannon Giddens, and Angelique Kidjo, Green River Festival is packed with activities for children and families. Enjoy crafts and music at The Art Garden tent and stage, A-Z’s Yo-Yo Team, a family sing, and drum circle, Curious George, PaintBox Theater, the yearly Mardi Gras Parade tradition, tethered hot air balloon rides, an instrument petting zoo, and more. For a full lineup of music and activities visit www.greenriverfestival.com.

Bulletin Board

Jul 5 – Aug 4

The 2019 Ko Festival of Performance (July 5 – August 4) has been curated on the theme of “HABITAT” – the humankind. It’s a season for Teens/Adults/Seniors about displaced persons, the effects of sudden habitat change, and endangered & vanished cultures — all original, professional work, created by the artists who come to Ko. Performers range from Samite and his extraordinary African music & personal stories to a Rat (a puppet) in love with a deported Berlin cabaret star. And for all ages, The Mettawee River Theater Company returns with an Indian tale, “The Ring Dove.” Tickets for Shows, Story Slam & Workshops (jumpstart your creativity!) are available at kofest.com and at the Box Office 413-542-3750. Special prices for SNAP/EBT cardholders.

Wed in Jul

Enjoy an hour of free kid-friendly fun with your lunch this July at River Valley Co-op in Northampton on their deck from 11am-12noon. Performances from different local organizations and performers include: “Summer, Seashore, Ocean” songs and stories with folksinger & storyteller Tim Van Egmond on July 10; Living Statue with Linda Peck on July 17; “Dragonflies of the Connecticut Valley” with Dave Small, president of Athol Bird & Nature Club, on July 24; and “Bouncy Jazz & Klezmer Tunes” with Brian Bender and friend on July 31. Stop by, grab your favorite lunch from the deli, and come out to their deck for a delightful hour of music, art, literature, history, or nature. River Valley Co-Op. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA.

Jul 12

The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington, MA presents a FREE show with the Acrobats of Cirque-tacular on Friday, July 12th at 10am. The Acrobats of Cirque-tacular features one dazzling circus feat after another in a high-energy family-friendly flurry of fun! Indulge your curiosity and celebrate your senses as our troupe of acrobats, aerialists, and circus specialty artists bend, twist, flip, and fly into your hearts and minds! Sponsored by Highland Street Foundation, this event is part of the Mahaiwe’s ongoing Free Fun Friday tradition. All ages welcome, general admission — first-come, first-serve. 14 Castle Street, Great Barrington, MA. 413-528-0100. mahaiwe.org.

Jul 20

Did you know Dickinson wrote around 100 poems about bees? Join us at the Emily Dickinson Museum(280 Main St., Amherst, MA) on July 20 for “Buccaneers of Buzz,” their annual Children’s Circus! This family-friendly event celebrates the important role pollinators played in Dickinson’s poetry and in our lives today. Learn more about the continued significance of pollinators from educators from Book & Plow Farm, crafts, games, and an interactive, musical puppet show with Tom Knight at 1:30pm. Perfect for children ages 3 to 10, this event is $5 for families or free for Friends of the Museum. Stop by between 12 and 3:30pm to see what all the buzz is about! For more information, email EDMprograms@emilydickinsonmuseum.org or visit their website.

Jul 20, 21, Aug 7

Voted “Best Summer Theater,” PaintBox Theatre celebrates its Sweet 16th Season by hitting the high seas with their favorite band of pirates, Everybody Wants To Be A Pirate! They areeeeeeee back with more jokes, more treasure, and more shenanigINs-and-OUTs. Kelsey Flynn, Troy Mercier, and Myka Plunkett will be holding strong this summer on deck with all new jokes. You’re always welcome to join the crew for the third installment of the saga that is PaintBox PIRATES! Shows are: July 20, 10:30am & 1pm, July 21, 10:30am & 1pm, and again on Wed., Aug 7, 10:30am & 1pm at Williston Theater (18 Payson Avenue, Easthampton, MA.) Tickets: $10 at the door or at BrownPaperTickets (children under 2 are free.) paintboxtheatre@gmail.com, paintboxtheatre.org.

Jul 23, Jul 30, & Aug 6

Join us at Look Park every Tuesday starting on June 25th until August 6th for the Franklin King Children’s Series! Shows start at 10am and are $5 per person. Steve Corning will get you jazzed to start the day on July 23rd with his juggling act. On July 30th, Bowey the Clown will have everyone laughing and on August 6th, Ed the Magician will be back to dazzle families once again! For more information visit: www.lookpark.org or call 413-584-5457.

Jul 24 – Aug 10

Barrington Stage Company: Ragtag Theater’s Hansel and Gretel. Book by Sam Lafrage; Music and Lyrics by Lewis Flinn and Sam Lafrage. For ages 3 to 103, Ragtag Theatre Company (creators of the smash hits Cinderella and Rapunzel) is creating a hilarious, interactive, fractured musical version of the well-known fairy tale Hansel and Gretel, featuring Barrington Stage Company’s Youth Theatre Company in Pittsfield, MA. This slap-happy, reimagined romp through this beloved fairy tale is guaranteed to be a great time for all! Dates: July 24–August 10. Tickets: 413-236-8888. barringtonstageco.org

Aug 4

Join The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts on August 4 from 5-8:30pm for a special Cider Pairing Dinner fundraising event! Dine al fresco while enjoying the breathtaking views at Apex Orchards in Shelburne, MA, with dinner prepared by Wheelhouse paired with locally made hard cider by Artifact Cider Project and Headwater Cider. Tractor tours of the orchard and grounds included! Visit foodbankwma.org/cider-pairing-dinner for tickets and more information.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and to make music with other young musicians? The Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic & supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle & high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and also collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sun, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thurs, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

ADVERTISE HERE: Want to reach thousands of families living across Western MA? See your community event, after-school program, summer camp, class, school, open house, audition, homeschool program, workshop, volunteer opportunity, wellness program, local business, fundraiser, or non-profit featured here in the Bulletin Board section of our list of Weekly Suggested Events and in our weekly eNewsletter! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org.

Featured Directories


LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 13-26, 2019

Saturday, July 13Sunday, July 14
Monday, July 15Tuesday, July 16Wednesday, July 17
Thursday, July 18Friday, July 19

Saturday, July 20Sunday, July 21
Monday, July 22Tuesday, July 23Wednesday, July 24
Thursday, July 25Friday, July 26

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

Read the rest of this entry »

16 Books for Summer Reading

100 Suggested Events in Western MA: July 6-19, 2019

Awarded the “Essential Agent of Change Award” by the MDPH’s Massachusetts Essentials for Childhood, Hilltown Families is recognized as a leading family strengthening initiative in the region, promoting “positive parenting through the social norm of community social connectedness.” Serving Western Massachusetts since 2005, Hilltown Families continues to support the development and enhancement of our local economy and community. Local businesses, farms, individuals, schools, and non-profit organizations are invited to collaborate with Hilltown Families in their community outreach. With nearly 9,000 opt-in subscribers and 2.5+ million visits to our web site alone, Hilltown Families can deliver your message to thousands of families living throughout the four counties of Western MA! Find out about our affordable advertising options and how you can partner with Hilltown Families in your online marketing by contacting us at info@hilltownfamilies.org… and scroll down to discover community-based educational events and community building opportunities happening this weekend and next week in Western MA!

SUBSCRIBE to our eNewsletter to stay up-to-date!


Featured Event

Jul 12 – 14

Green River Festival, Western Massachusetts’ most family-friendly music festival, happens at Greenfield Community College on July 12-14 in Greenfield, MA. Kids 10 and under are always free! In addition to an incredible lineup of music for adults featuring Lucinda Williams, The Wood Brothers, The Devil Makes Three, Rhiannon Giddens, and Angelique Kidjo, Green River Festival is packed with activities for children and families. Enjoy crafts and music at The Art Garden tent and stage, A-Z’s Yo-Yo Team, a family sing, and drum circle, Curious George, PaintBox Theater, the yearly Mardi Gras Parade tradition, tethered hot air balloon rides, an instrument petting zoo, and more. For a full lineup of music and activities visit www.greenriverfestival.com.

Bulletin Board

Jul 5 – Aug 4

The 2019 Ko Festival of Performance (July 5 – August 4) has been curated on the theme of “HABITAT” – the humankind. It’s a season for Teens/Adults/Seniors about displaced persons, the effects of sudden habitat change, and endangered & vanished cultures — all original, professional work, created by the artists who come to Ko. Performers range from Samite and his extraordinary African music & personal stories to a Rat (a puppet) in love with a deported Berlin cabaret star. And for all ages, The Mettawee River Theater Company returns with an Indian tale, “The Ring Dove.” Tickets for Shows, Story Slam & Workshops (jumpstart your creativity!) are available at kofest.com and at the Box Office 413-542-3750. Special prices for SNAP/EBT cardholders.

Jul 9 & Jul 16

Join us at Look Park every Tuesday starting on June 25th until August 6th for the Franklin King Children’s Series! Shows start at 10am and are $5 per person. Get ready for lots of laughs on July 9th with Alex the Jester. Bob Bloom is bringing a cargo of colorful and lovable drums for your heart and hands to enjoy on July 16th. Everyone drumrollicks with Bob as he launches legendary songs with enticing melodies and captivating energy. For more information visit: www.lookpark.org or call 413-584-5457.

Wed in Jul

Enjoy an hour of free kid-friendly fun with your lunch this July at River Valley Co-op in Northampton on their deck from 11am-12noon. Performances from different local organizations and performers include: “Summer, Seashore, Ocean” songs and stories with folksinger & storyteller Tim Van Egmond on July 10; Living Statue with Linda Peck on July 17; “Dragonflies of the Connecticut Valley” with Dave Small, president of Athol Bird & Nature Club, on July 24; and “Bouncy Jazz & Klezmer Tunes” with Brian Bender and friend on July 31. Stop by, grab your favorite lunch from the deli, and come out to their deck for a delightful hour of music, art, literature, history, or nature. River Valley Co-Op. 413-584-2665. 330 North King Street, Northampton, MA.

Aug 25 & 29

Do you know children who are talented instrumentalists? Are they motivated to practice and for talented musicians in middle and high school to make music with other young musicians? Pioneer Valley Symphony Youth Orchestra offers a dynamic and supportive ensemble environment for talented musicians in middle and high school. Directed by Steven Bathory-Peeler, the PVSYO performs in 2 standalone concerts and collaborates with the Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra. Chamber ensemble opportunities are also offered. The PVSYO rehearses at Greenfield High School on Sundays from 5:30-7:30pm during the school year. AUDITIONS FOR ALL INSTRUMENTS will be held in Greenfield on Sunday, Aug 25, 3-5pm & Thursday, Aug 29, 6-8pm. Visit www.pvsoc.org/youth-orchestra to learn more or register for an audition.

Sep 29

Register now for Will Bike 4 Food, a cycling event to benefit The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The 9th annual event will start at the Lion’s Club Pavilion on Sunday, September 29, 2019. This event is a special opportunity for riders of all ages and riding abilities to enjoy a fun-filled day with other cyclists while helping to feed our neighbors in need. Choose the 10, 25, 50, or 100-mile route through the scenic Pioneer Valley. You can choose to ride as an individual or form a team. Participating cyclists are invited to stay for an After-Party at the finish line. Enjoy a cookout and craft beer, music, games, and more. Register now for the lowest fundraising minimum and to guarantee your free t-shirt. To register or donate, visit willbike4food.org.

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LIST OF WEEKLY SUGGESTED EVENTS
July 6-19, 2019

Saturday, July 6Sunday, July 7
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