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Love Where You Live Franklin County: Greenfield Massachusetts

greenfield massachusetts franklin county Greenfield, the county seat of Franklin County is a hub of arts, culture, and impressive cuisine. With a classic New England downtown area set amongst the rolling hills of Western Mass, Greenfield is home to a vibrant community with many small, locally-owned businesses. Conveniently located at the intersection of Interstate 91 and Route 2/The Mohawk Trail, residents of Greenfield love the town because it has a variety of restaurants, shops, markets, professional businesses, and yet still offers ways to get outside and enjoy nature.

Food & Dining

Right in downtown Greenfield, you’ll find Green Fields Market, part of the Franklin Community Coop, which offers healthy ready-made foods and locally-sourced grocery items. The Greenfield Farmers’ Market is another easy way to find local, fresh groceries every Saturday morning May through October. For affordable groceries anytime, Foster’s Supermarket is a family owned and operated grocery store within easy walking/driving distance to downtown Greenfield. For an evening out, there is a long list of great places to eat, such as Hope & Olive, a sibling-owned restaurant with creative cocktails, and The People’s Pint, a craft brewery with creative pub options. 

Arts & Culture

Greenfield is rich in arts and music, with many artists, galleries, music venues, and more. The Geissler Gallery at Stoneleigh-Burnham School, promotes successful and professional women artists to its students. The gallery offers four different exhibits throughout the year, and includes gallery talks when the artist speaks about her work and her career.

Ten Forward is a music venue which books diverse, eclectic, experimental, and world-class artists. Along with musical performances, they also host theater and dance events, film screenings, DJ nights, comedy, fundraisers and more. Another great spot to catch a live music show is Hawks and Reed Performing Arts Center. Located in a beautiful historic building, Hawks and Reed has three performance halls and presents performing artists from around the world.

Get Outside

The Energy Park, an urban greenspace in downtown Greenfield is the town’s newest park. The park has sustainable energy exhibits such as solar panels, herb and native plant gardens, and a Boston and Maine railroad caboose with an exhibit inside. Plus, a bandstand is used for weekly concerts and other special functions.

To get the best view of the town, hike up to Poet’s Seat Tower, a sandstone observation tower on Rocky Mountain. The tower was given its name in honor of the long tradition of poets being drawn to that spot. There are a variety of trails to explore which offer views of the surrounding hills, the countryside, and the Connecticut River.

Griswold/GTD Conservation Area is also a great place to explore outside, with hiking trails, wetlands, grasslands, and open space.

Thinking of moving to Greenfield?

Check out available commercial and residential listings in Greenfield, Mass here.

Plus, there are only 2 available units left at Green River Commons, beautiful single level, sustainable, comfortable and net zero ready townhome condominiums. View them here!

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If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here

United Way of Franklin County 20th Annual Arts and Leisure Auction

united way franklin county auction fundraiserThis year, you can still take part in United Way of Franklin County’s Auction Fundraiser from your home! The auction has been moved online to keep everyone safe while still raising money for our community’s education, health, and financial stability. Although we’ll miss the in-person interactions, we’ll still be able to enjoy the fun and humor of the auction through a livestream video feed of the hosts John Howland and David Howe. The auction, which is themed Casino Royale, will include live music, online live and silent auction bidding, and raffle drawings. 

Online bidding opens up Wednesday, May 27 and will close with the virtual event on Saturday, May 30 at 5:30 pm EST. So keep checking back on the items you want because there’s even more time to outbid others. Visit the auction website where you can already start browsing the auction items, which includes a variety of art, household items, gift cards to local attractions, local services, and more! This year’s live auction includes some very exciting getaway packages and a year of desserts by Timberly Grout, baker extraordinaire. You can also start buying raffle tickets for restaurant gift cards and home-cooked meals! 

To start bidding, you’ll need to create an account. It’s easy! Just go to the event page here, select “Click here to register,” fill out your details, and then start bidding on the silent auction. Then on Saturday, tune in to the live event to bid on the live auction and enjoy the show!

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If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here

Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail: The Show Must Go ON-Line!

Steve Earp potter western Massachusetts The Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail is an annual event in Western Mass, which draws pottery lovers from around the region and even the country to experience firsthand where and how the potters craft their one-of-a-kind pieces. Trail-goers are welcomed to grab a map and guide themselves door to door to 9 different studios where the artists and their guest artists are ready to proudly demonstrate their techniques and offer sales on their pieces of work. 

This year’s Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail has a new slogan: The show must go on...line! Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, unfortunately the potters cannot open their doors to the public this year. However, the artists did what they do best - they used their creativity to create something new, different, and wonderful! They have brought the pottery trail to the public through virtual tours and online shopping. 

While some of the artists already had existing online stores, many had to create new ones to cope with these times of social distancing. All of the potters have been working hard to boost up their online stores in time for the new Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail online event. From May 30 at noon to May 31 at midnight, the 9 artists and their guest potters will offer sales through their online stores. So you can still purchase locally, handcrafted pottery straight from the makers. The potters are accustomed to shipping their fragile products, so they can safely send you your purchases. If you are local, some may be able to leave your package on their front step for curbside pickup.

Molly cantor Shelburne falls pottery Massachusetts To make up for the studio tours, the team of potters have recorded 9 different videos of the 9 studios, so you can see the spaces where the creativity happens and demonstrations of how the products are made. Check them out on their Facebook page

In past years, there has been a mug giveaway for one person who visits 7 or more of the studios. Instead, this year anyone who purchases a piece from Lucy Fagella during the event, will have their name entered into a drawing for a free mug. 

The Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail normally draws in thousands of dollars to these potters, who count on this boost in sales once a year. Other local businesses usually benefit from this event as well through all of the visitors who come from near and far and usually spend the weekend shopping, going out to eat, and staying at local accommodations. Let’s all support the potters this year through this adaptive online event so that they may continue their craft and reopen their doors to us all again next year. 

Visit asparagusvalleypotterytrail.com for more information!

Asparagus valley pottery trail western Massachusetts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here

Sign Up Now For a Summer Farm Share in Franklin County Massachusetts

Fresh vegetables csa farm share western mass The Connecticut River Valley has some of the richest and most fertile soils around, which makes us fortunate to have plenty of wonderful farms in our own backyards. Take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy delicious fresh produce all summer long. Now is the time to sign up for a summer CSA/Farm Share. Here’s a list of some Franklin County farms and how you can get fresh veggies from their fields to your kitchen table, as well as other delightful prepared foods. 

 

Sweet Morning Farm, Leyden, MA

Sweet Morning Farm was on the fence about whether or not they would be offering farm shares this summer, with so much uncertainty due to the virus. However, they recently announced that yes, they will! Of course, they will be taking measures to ensure everyone’s safety around pick-ups. All shares will be pre-bagged and there is a delivery option available. Sign up on their website, sweet-morning-farm.blogspot.com, where they also post weekly what you will find in your share.

 

Red Fire Farm, Montague, MA

Red Fire Farm is still accepting sign-ups for their farm shares in Montague, Granby, Northampton, and Springfield. Their regular summer share, early June through October, is great for households which cook 3 times a week and comes with full pick-your-own privileges. You can also add on baked goods to your share. Sign up is easy on their website, www.redfirefarm.com. 

 

Just Roots, Greenfield, MA

Just Roots is a nonprofit community organization located in Greenfield, Massachusetts, consisting of local people who seek to promote vegetable gardening and grow food on municipal land. They grow their produce on the Greenfield Community Farm which was sold to the Town of Greenfield in 1849 by Justin Root - hence the name Just Roots. You can still sign up for their summer CSA share which runs for 20 weeks from June through October. Each share provides a weekly array of fresh veggies to choose from plus access to the pick-your-own garden. Learn more about Just Roots and sign up for the summer farm share on their website, justroots.org

 

Atlas Farm Store, South Deerfield, MA

Located on the rich, fertile soils of South Deerfield in the Connecticut River Valley, Atlas Farm offers their own certified organic produce, as well as other regional, sustainable farm products. They have made it super easy and safe for customers to make purchases through their online store, with curbside pickup available Monday through Friday 9 am to 5 pm. Any order made before 2 pm, can be available within 2-3 hours on the same day! Visit their website, atlasfarm.com, to view their long list of offerings and complete an order. 

 

Natural Roots Farm, Conway, MA

Natural Roots is a horse-powered farm in Conway whose aim is to “raise every plant and animal on the farm in optimal health and vitality.” Although they are sold out of farm shares for the 2020 season, you can still stop by their farm store to purchase a long list of either theirs or other products made locally. They also offer part-time shares, so if you’re only in need of a share for part of the season or a smaller quantity of vegetables than what the share provides, then contact Natural Roots to sign up. Visit their website, naturalroots.com, for more information.

 

Diemand Farm, Wendell, MA

Anne Diemand Bucci has found herself very busy lately with a huge demand for Diemand Farm’s turkey pot pies. In addition to their popular pot pies, the farm store offers a variety of other prepared foods using their meat such as soups, meat loafs, burritos and more. Some options can even be made gluten-free! They also have vegetarian options and a list of delicious desserts available for purchase. All of their products are made using local ingredients. Visit their website, thediemandfarm.com, to find out what they offer. You can stop by their farm store Monday through Saturday 9 am to 4 pm. They are also offering curbside service or scheduled deliveries by request. 

Connecticut river valley farm land agriculture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore  Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here

Photo Credit: Sarah Heminger

Berkshire East Connects Ski Goggle Donors to Medical Workers Fighting COVID-19

Goggles for docs Berkshire East Covid-19During these times, it’s tough to know how to help. However, our local ski resort’s owner, Jon Schaefer, found a simple thing that many people and companies can do to help the doctors and medical professionals who are taking care of sick patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. To date, Berkshire East’s Goggles for Docs have connected 41,788 pairs of ski and snowboard goggles from goggle donors to hospitals and medical centers in need of protective equipment. 

Ski and snowboard goggles are an effective personal protection while fighting COVID-19 because they create a strong seal around the edges, generally don’t fog up easily and are reusable. Even if the goggles are tinted, doctors would still prefer them over exposure to the Coronavirus. Photos of gratitude have been sent back to donors showing medical professionals wearing the donated ski goggles on the job. 

Goggles for docs western Massachusetts franklin countyAccording to their website, gogglesfordocs.com, 1,178 pairs are currently still needed. If you have a pair of new or used ski goggles that you would like to donate, visit their website, and you can select a hospital to donate to, as well as instructions on how to safely prepare your goggles to be shipped. If you don’t have any ski goggles to donate, you can make a monetary donation, become a drop-off spot, or a regional volunteer. 

I am so proud of this local business for stepping up and helping our medical community near and far, as well as our locals for participating in this effort.  

If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here


 

Greenfield Farmers' Market Opens With COVID-19 Safety Protocols

Start Saturdays Fresh!

The Greenfield Farmers’ Market is opening in a different way this year. In order to keep the community safe while still offering local and fresh products, the Market has created important rules and guidelines for market goers. They feel that the measures they have put in place are above and beyond what other shopping options have installed. Right now, it is so important that everyone stay safe. However, people still need to purchase food and agricultural products and the GFM has worked hard to cater to both. 

Located next to the Greenfield Commons, The Greenfield Farmers’ Market plans to make things as safe as possible. They have mapped out the entry and exit points for market goers. At the entrance, customers will pass through a hand washing station. All customers will be required to wear masks. They will then be guided through the market, always maintaining 6 feet from vendors and other customers. Volunteers will be stationed throughout the market to instruct customers and ensure everyone is following the protocols correctly. A menu of all the items for sale will be available for customers to ease the flow through the market.

While this is not the usual way we shop at farmers’ markets, the Greenfield Farmers’ Market is providing the opportunity for local vendors to earn money and move their products, and for shoppers to still find their favorite local items, all while keeping the community safe. Now more than ever, we need to support our community and shop local. 

Visit the Greenfield Farmers’ Market every Saturday now through October at Court’s Square in downtown Greenfield from 8 am to 12:30 pm.

Greenfield farmers market western Massachusetts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a list of vendors and safety protocols, go to greenfieldfarmersmarket.com.

If you are interested in learning more about the area and what each town has to offer click here to explore Franklin County or search for homes for sale by checking out Wanda's search page here

 

The Sweetest Time of Year: It's Sugaring Season!

Maple syrup sugar house MassachusettsSunrise Farms, Colrain

Sugaring season is in full swing in Western Mass and all the sugar houses in Franklin County are busy! The first boil for most sugar houses happens in early February so by now, the local sugar houses have already had a few boils. This year, the Lively Family at Sunrise Farms in Colrain is doing things a little bit differently. Rather than using the traditional wood-fired maple syrup evaporator as they have for the past 5 generations, this year they are using their new fully solar-powered electric evaporator also known as “eco vap.” Instead of using a wood or gas-fired evaporator, the eco vap uses electricity to create steam, which is then captured and compressed to heat the sap to its boiling point. While this new machine cost about $85,000, the Lively’s feel it is a worthwhile investment since it is eco-friendly and runs more efficiently and at a lower cost than their old method. The machine produces approximately 15 gallons of syrup an hour and has an estimated operating cost of $3 to $4 an hour. Visit Sunrise Farms on Facebook for more information.

Davenport Maple Farm, Shelburne

Meanwhile, Davenport Maple Farm on Tower Rd in Shelburne, MA is also well into the sugaring season. Their breakfast/brunch restaurant has been open for a few weeks now, where they serve up hot items like French toast, pancakes, bacon, and more, all which can be covered in their delicious maple syrup. Davenport is a family-owned maple farm which is open for 6 weekends only (Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 3 pm), starting the first weekend in March. So you better get over there for breakfast before sugaring season is over! Visit them on Facebook.

Maple syrup greenfield mass North Hadley Sugar Shack, Hadley

North Hadley Sugar Shack is now open until April 12th. Visit their sugarhouse located on 181 River Drive in Hadley and learn how to make delicious syrups. They also have a wonderful breakfast menu. For more information visit their website, at NorthHadleySugarShack.com.

Red Bucket Sugar Shack, Worthington

The Red Bucket Sugar Shack opened for the 2020 season on March 7th. Located on Kinne Brook Road in Worthington, Red Bucket is a family-owned and operated traditional New England Sugar Shack. Go there for breakfast on Saturdays 8 am to 2 pm and Sundays 8 am to 3 pm. Visit them on Facebook for more information and upcoming specials!

For a complete list of sugar houses and maple producers visit The Massachusetts Maple Producers Association’s website.

Source: https://www.recorder.com/solar-powered-sugaring-32793139

The Franklin County Gift Card Is the Perfect Gift For Any Occasion!

New this year, the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce has created the Franklin County Gift Card! This one gift card allows cardholders to make purchases at various participating businesses around the county. So with one purchase you could give someone the gift of an adventure in Charlemont, art from Shelburne Falls, a massage in Greenfield, or more!

Here is the list of businesses participating in the Franklin County Gift Card so far:

Franklin county gift card Massachusetts Andy's and The Oak Shoppe
Baker Office Supply
Beth Stadnicki, Licensed Massage Therapist
Berkshire Brewing Company Tap Room
Berkshire East Mountain Resort
Centennial House Bed & Breakfast
Ciesluk's Market
Crumpin-Fox Golf Course
Damn Yankees BBQ
ENJOY.
Floral Affairs
Greenfield Community College Bookstore and Bursar's Office
Greenfield Farmer's Cooperative Exchange
Greenfield Games
Hamel's Creative Catering
Institute for Wilderness & Emergency Medicine
Ja'Duke Theater
Loot found + made
Mesa Verde
Northfield Golf Course
Richie Richardson FAB
Ryan & Casey Liquors
Thai Blue Ginger
Upper Bend Cafe & Bruncheonette
Zoar Outdoor

 

Gift cards can be purchased at:

Franklin County Chamber of Commerce, 395 Main Street, Greenfield
Ciesluk's Market, 55 North Main Street, South Deerfield
ENJOY. 4 Deerfield Avenue, Shelburne Falls
Greenfield Savings Bank branches: Greenfield, Shelburne Falls, Turners Falls, Conway, South Deerfield, Northampton-King Street

More locations to purchase coming soon!

To check your gift card balance, please call 888-494-9760 and choose option #1

Franklin county gift card Shelburne falls Massachusetts shopping

You Are Here: A Juried Community Art Exhibit at Great Falls Discovery Center

Exploded View Turners Falls Art ExhibitFrom now through the end of February, check out a community art exhibit at the Great Falls Discovery Center, curated by Exploded View. The exhibit includes work by regional artists in multiple media exploring maps, the significance of place, and movement across boundaries. It asks questions such as: Where do you live? Where are you from? Where do you dream? How do you find your way? Where are your borders? Do maps lie? 

During these two months, you may also come upon members of Exploded View working in various corners of the building. Exploded View is a dynamic group of women artists and writers working together to create original performance and exhibition. 

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Montague Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

The Great Falls Discovery Center is located at 2 Avenue A in Turners Falls. For directions, hours, and more information about the Discovery Center, visit greatfallsdiscoverycenter.org.

Community Highlight: The Buzz in Greenfield, Mass

With the announcement of the closing of Wilson’s Department Store in downtown Greenfield, it feels like the end of an era for the town. Wilson’s has been a landmark business for about a century and in recent times has drawn in customers to shop at one of the last old-time department stores in the region. While the closing of the store is a sad loss to the community, it also represents a shift in the downtown businesses and the opportunity for something new in this space.

Business West recently published an article about the “Distinct Buzz in Downtown Greenfield.” The article highlights the following list of positive things happening in Greenfield: 

Downtown Greenfield Massachusetts“• New businesses such as the Rise Above coffee shop, and established businesses under new ownership, such as the Greenfield Garden Cinema, another downtown anchor;

• A refocused Greenfield Business Assoc. (GBA), now under the leadership of coordinator Rachel Roberts;

• A burgeoning cultural economy headlined by the Hawks & Reed Performing Arts Center in the heart of downtown, but also a growing number of arts-related ventures;

• Co-working spaces — such as Greenspace, located above Hawks and Reed, as well as Another Castle, a facility that has attracted a number of video-game-related businesses — that are attracting young professionals and bringing more vibrancy to the downtown;

GCET, the municipal provider of reliable high-speed internet, a service that that has made those co-work spaces possible;

The Hive, a makers space now under development on Main Street, just a block or so down from Wilson’s;

• Rail service, specifically in the form of the Yankee Flyer, which brings two trains a day to the city, and enables one to travel to New York and back the same day;

A new town library, which is expected to bring more vibrancy — and another co-working space — to downtown; and

• A noticeable tightening of the housing market, a tell-tale sign of progress.”

What all of these points amount to is that Greenfield is growing even more so into a community where people have access to important resources. The reliable internet, arts and culture, learning and career opportunities, and a thriving downtown area create environments where people love going to work and can own their own successful businesses. Several companies have already moved their office spaces to Greenspace, above Hawks and Reed because they wanted their employees to be happy in their workspace and enjoy coming to work. 

The housing market in Greenfield is also moving fast these days. Inventory is moving so fast that some report looking at homes which are sold before they even have an opportunity to place an offer. 

As a celebration of the collaboration happening now in Greenfield and the noticeable buzz in the community, the downtown area will soon be populated with giant bees. Many local artists are decorating these bees which will comprise this collaborative art installation and draw even more visitors to the area. The bees are expected to be installed in May or June. 

To read the entire Business West article about the buzz in Greenfield, click here.

And check out current homes for sale by Wanda in Greenfield, like the one pictured below here

Home for sale Greenfield Massachusetts





 

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