Hilltowns

Completely Renovated Colonial For Sale in Ashfield

Serenity surrounds this completely renovated 1817 Colonial that combines period details of yesteryear with the modern conveniences of today. State of the art green technology features a geothermal heating/cooling system, solar array, high rated foam insulation and Pella Low-E Argon windows while attractive woodwork, restored mantels, original wood floors and exposed posts and beams enhance the interior. There is a gorgeous kitchen w/soapstone countertop, fabulous great room with cathedral ceiling & gas fireplace, dining room, formal living room with original fireplace, first floor bedroom & full bath. Three additional bedrooms and a luxurious bathroom with slate and soapstone open shower & custom built vanity are upstairs. In addition, there are 3 outbuildings, 2-3 car attached garage, screened-in porch and a deck with views of the pond, stream and hills beyond. A nature lover's oasis, the private 11.8 acres is mostly open, perfect for gardening & animals. Less than 30 min to Northampton/Greenfield.

                

Click here to view the full listing.

Contact Wanda Mooney today for a tour! 
Wanda@Wandamooney.com or 413-768-9848

It's That Time of Year for Festivals and Fairs!

As summer winds down, fairs and festivals are popping up all over Western Mass. Last weekend, hundreds came out for the 101st Heath Fair. This coming weekend marks the 150th Cummington Fair in Cummington, MA. The Fair was started in 1868 but was initiated in 1883 as the Hillside Agricultural Society. Today, the Cummington Fair remains true to its agricultural roots with events based around livestock and tractors, such as the livestock shows, horse draws, and antique engine and tractor shows.

But that’s not the only reason to go to the Cummington Fair. This year’s 4-day event will include a bike stunt show, fireworks, a craft barn, demolition derby and more. The stages will fill with live entertainers such as Zoe Darrow, Presley and Taylor, Jose Duddy, and others. Plus, there will be all sorts of vendors selling food, crafts, and other items. The Cummington Fair starts Thursday, August 23 and runs through Sunday, August 26. Purchase tickets online and get more information at cummingtonfair.com.

Here are some other great festivals and fairs coming up soon:

 

The Heath Fair Returns for a Weekend of Community, Food, Music, and Agriculture

The Heath Fair is one of the few country fairs still around that stays true to its agricultural roots. For over 100 years, it has offered events such as the ox draw, sheep shows, and various trade demonstrations to teach the community about agriculture in an engaging way. Every year the residents of Heath and visitors from surrounding towns look forward to this end of summer event. This year, the 101st Heath Fair will take place this weekend, Friday, August 17th to Sunday, August 19th.

It is truly incredible to see how a large event like this with a variety of activities comes together in such an organized way. It is because of the commitment of volunteers who run each of the events that the Heath Fair is so successful. This year’s lineup of events include the antique tractor pull, rabbit show, goat show, horse draw, truck pull, and sheep show. Bring the kids because there will be so much for them to do too like the zucchini races, wagon rides, demonstrations, and the parade!

Make sure you come hungry because there will be plenty to eat! Join the organized meals such as the Church Ladies Ham and Bean Supper on Friday, the Heath Firefighters Association BBQ on both Saturday and Sunday, or the Blueberry Pancake Breakfast on Sunday. There will also be a great group of vendors selling food, including Lucia’s Latin Kitchen, Kailash Kitchen, and of course Hager’s Farm Market’s fried dough and maple cream.

A country fair needs music and this year’s artist lineup is spectacular. On Friday night, check out Upstate Rubdown and then join in on the square dancing, led by Doug Wilkins. On Saturday, the music starts at 11 am with The Uncles of the Pioneers and continues through the day with The Green Sisters, Li’l BeeDee & The Doo-Rites, and The Whiskey Treaty Road Show. On Sunday, the Ageless Waves of Rhythm will kick off the day with their drumming, followed by the Shelburne Falls Military Band, and Banish Misfortune.

For the full schedule of events, visit heathfair.org. The Heath Fair is presented by the Heath Agricultural Society. Admission is only $8 or $6 for seniors and free for children 9 and under. See you at the Heath Fair!

 

Celebrate Shelburne's 250th Anniversary this Weekend!

Celebrate with Shelburne as it turns 250 years old! There is a full weekend of events planned including dinner, dancing, farm tours, a parade, food and craft vendors, live bands, square dancing, children’s games, militia re-enactment, fireworks, book sale, and more. It is sure to be a great time for family, community members, and anyone else who wants to join in the celebration of this wonderful town.

Shelburne is located in Franklin County, west of Greenfield along the Mohawk Trail (State Route 2). It was first settled in 1756 as part of Deerfield, MA and was later incorporated as a town in 1775. Much of the history of Shelburne is based in the vicinity of Shelburne Falls, a small village composed of part of Buckland and part of Shelburne. Shelburne has been largely an agricultural town. However, the manufacturing industry thrived in Shelburne Falls due to the railroad through town and the existence of Lamson and Goodnow, a cutlery manufacturing company. Today, Shelburne Falls is geared more towards the tourism industry with a variety of shops, galleries, and eateries. The rest of Shelburne remains beautifully natural, with dairy farms, sugarhouses, orchards, and majestic rolling hills.

Don’t miss the chance to celebrate this milestone for Shelburne this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Here is the full schedule for the weekend:

Friday, June 22

5:15 p.m. Opening Ceremony, Baptist Corner Lot, Main Street

6-10:30 p.m. Reception dinner and dancing at the Shelburne-Buckland Community Center, tickets $25

Saturday, June 23

All day - self-guided tours of 100-year old farms

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. - crafts & skill from yesteryear on display, plus quilt show at First Congregational Church

1 p.m. - militia camp set-up at Shelburne Historical Society

3 p.m. Parade starting at Cricket Field and ending at Buckland Elementary School

4 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Food & craft vendors, children's games, square dancing, live bands at Buckland Shelburne Elementary School

9:30 p.m. Fireworks

Sunday, June 24 (rain date for Saturday events)

10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Militia re-enactment - 10th MA Volunteer Infantry Militia Company C

11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Open House at Historical Society

Click here for the event flyer.

 

Register Now for the 2018 Hilltown Youth Theatre Summer Workshop

The Pioneer Valley is a hub for the creative arts. It’s a place where many musicians, artists, performers, and creatives come to gain inspiration for their work and to find an artistic community where they can thrive. This is not only true for adults, but for children and teens as well. There are many opportunities in the Valley for kids to follow their artistic intuitions and to gain experience working as a team to create something wonderful. One opportunity in particular is right here in Franklin County, specifically in Charlemont. Since 2010, the Hilltown Youth Performing Arts Programs has been running their Hilltown Youth Theatre Summer Workshop. Their mission is to build a supportive community for youth to develop personally and artistically and to train and collaborate on theatrical productions at a high level, therefore giving them an appreciation for hilltown life and a passion for the arts.

This program, for youth aged 10-18 years old, is an intensive arts experience for aspiring actors, musicians, dancers, and set designers. Guest artists and master teachers, direct participants to create performances which incorporate movement, puppets, mask making, voice work, circus arts, and work on large apparatus such as stilts, aerial fabrics, spools, flying trapeze, and more. At the end of the workshop, the performance takes to the streets, or rather the mountains for audiences to enjoy. This year’s production of Avatar: The Last Airbender will be hosted by Berkshire East Mountain Resort in Charlemont.

The 2018 Summer Workshop runs from July 16 to August 8, Monday through Friday, 9 am to 4 pm. Registration is open now and financial assistance is available. No previous experience is necessary but the ideal candidates will be artists, musicians, athletes, or any other active creative types. For more information, visit their website here.

Come to an Open House This Saturday for 94 S Deerfield Road in Conway MA

You’re invited to view this charming antique Farmhouse this Saturday, June 2 from 12-2 pm.  Admire the recently completed renovations. Well-known Integrity Builders rebuilt one end of the home and constructed a fabulous second floor bonus room that features a beautiful staircase, wood floors, cathedral ceiling and westerly views. This wonderful space is bright and cheery and perfect for a studio, bedroom, or home office. In addition a 1 car attached garage was added with new entry including a laundry area and tile floors. The main house has a large eat-in kitchen with Ashfield stone countertops, vintage sink, and new appliances. Dining room with built-in cabinet, 3 bedrooms one with walk-in closet, 1 ½ baths, wood floors, updated electrical panel, Buderus heating system and Comcast internet. It has a picturesque back yard, surrounded by nice landscape and lovely flowers. Conveniently located near downtown, library, park, bank, town swimming pool and less than 20 min to I-91 and Shelburne Falls.

View the full listing!

Contact Wanda today at 413-768-9848 or Wanda@WandaMooney.com

 

Northfield Drive-In Celebrates 70 Years

As a lifelong resident of Franklin County, I always appreciate seeing older businesses that are still running strong. One in particular is the Northfield Drive-In, located on the Northfield, MA/Hinsdale, NH line. In August of 1948, the Northfield Drive-In began showing their “movies under the stars.” Now, they will celebrate 70 years of business with their opening for the 2018 season. This Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, May 25th, 26th, and 27th, Northfield Drive-In will be showing Solo at 8:50 pm and Avengers: Infinity War at 10:50 pm.

This drive-in is 1 of only 20 drive-in theaters still in operation in New England, and the only one remaining of the 15 that the original owner, Carl Nilman, owned. Although the original screen was damaged by a hurricane in 1951, the second screen built kept the same dimensions and is still the one that exists today. In 1967, Northfield Drive-In changed ownership to the Shakour family, who still operate it today. They pride themselves in having a family-run business, where even the children would lend a hand at the snack stand and ticket booth on summer nights.

So take a drive out this weekend to the Northfield Drive-In and support this locally-owned gem. They are located in a beautiful scenic area and have a variety of delights at their snack bar. Plus, the rates are much lower than any indoor movie theater. Tickets are only $12 for adults and $7 for children (cash only). Visit their website for more information and to see what other films they will feature throughout the season.

 

Bridge of Flowers Annual Plant Sale This Saturday

Franklin County is home to Shelburne Falls, a tiny village on the banks of the Deerfield River, composed of parts of the towns of Buckland and Shelburne. There, you can walk across the world famous Bridge of Flowers, an old trolley bridge turned garden. A wide variety of plants and flowers bloom there, planted and cared for by volunteers. Walking across the bridge is a magical experience, seeing all of the brilliant flowers and the views of the Deerfield River.

The Bridge of Flowers Committee, initiated by the Shelburne Falls Area Women’s Club, manages and fundraises for the bridge. This Saturday, May 19, the Bridge of Flowers Committee will host their annual plant sale. From 9 am to noon, stop by the Village Green at the corner of Water and Main Streets in Shelburne Falls and browse the annuals and perennials for sale. There will also be other local vendors. All of the proceeds benefit the Bridge of Flowers. So come out and support this beautiful landmark of Shelburne Falls.

Visit the Bridge of Flowers website and like them on Facebook!

Wood-Smoked BBQ on the Scenic Mohawk Trail Now Open for the Season

Now that the weather is finally feeling like spring (and even summer!), I think all of us New Englanders are excited about warm summer days sitting outside enjoying some delicious food, especially BBQ. One of my personal favorite spots to eat homemade BBQ is at locally-owned Smoky Bro’s BBQ. Smoky Bro’s is now open for the season so you can head over there and enjoy their mouth-watering BBQ.

Try one of their wood-smoked meats such as pork spare ribs or chopped chicken accompanied with classic sides like mac-n-cheese or coleslaw. Order it as a sandwich or try a rack of ribs. All of their meat is slow-smoked with 100% apple wood, hickory, and oak - they never use gas or electric. Plus, whenever possible, they use local produce for their sides and sauces.

The owner, Brolin “Smoky Bro,” started the business in 2010. With the help of a friend, he designed and built his own massive, commercial-grade smoker. After getting married, him and his wife decided to open their own BBQ business and have been a hit ever since!

Smoky Bro’s BBQ is conveniently located on the Mohawk Trail in Shelburne. You can order from the counter and take it to go or sit at one of their picnic tables and enjoy the beautiful scenery while you eat. Smoky Bro’s BBQ is open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays and holiday Mondays from May through October.

Check out their website for the full menu and like them on Facebook to see updates throughout the summer.

 

Attend the Auction, Support Your Local Businesses!

As a former board member of the Greater Shelburne Falls Area Business Association (GSFABA) and a resident of the hilltowns, I love to support this association. The work they do benefits the hilltowns of West Franklin County, by boosting tourism, exposing businesses, and working together with the towns to make it a great place to live.

That is why I am excited that this Saturday, April 7, GSFABA will host their 22nd Annual Auction. Attend the auction and bid on exciting items donated by local businesses such as getaways, glass by Josh Simpson, and bike passes to Berkshire East’s Thunder Mountain Park. There will also be a variety of local food and beverage gift baskets and restaurant gift certificates.

The evening starts at 6 pm at the Shelburne-Buckland Community Center with a silent auction, followed by an exciting live auction. Plus, enjoy live music and local food, beer and wine while you bid.

Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. The proceeds from the auction will go towards GSFABA’s non-profit subsidiary, West County Arts & Culture, which supports the region’s creative economy. Contact Angela Varilly at 413-775-8281 for more information or visit shelburnefalls.com.