Arts & Life

The night that changed Deerfield forever: New book gives a comprehensive look at the infamous Deerfield Massacre of 1704

02-29-2024 2:26 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

If you’re from the region, you’ve probably come across the story of the 1704 attack on Deerfield, or, at least one of the many monuments placed around the county commemorating the English colonists.But how much do you really know of this time period,...


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Greening our brains and our thumbs: The many opportunities in the Valley to increase your garden knowledge and skills

02-29-2024 2:22 PM

By PAT JAMES

After moving from the city into a rural home with land 25 years ago, I was excited that the property was mostly bare ground that I could bend to my will and create beautiful gardens over time. As a kid, I’d helped in the garden a lot, so how hard...


Chalk Talk: When kids turn work in late: Navigating the tricky balance of deadlines and support for students

02-29-2024 2:20 PM

By NICOLE GODDARD

It’s March again, which means that in many high schools a new semester is well underway. At the end of every grading period, the same conversation starts making the rounds in teaching circles, on social media, in the teacher’s lounge, all sharing a...


Arts Briefs: BIPOC poets and racy love letters in Northampton, music inspired by T.S. Eliot in Holyoke, and more

02-29-2024 2:19 PM

Poetry night celebrates BIPOC writers and organizing workNORTHAMPTON — Franny Choi, the new poet laureate of Northampton, will do a reading tonight (Friday, March 1) at 6 p.m. at the Northampton Center for the Arts, where they’ll be joined by a number...


Around and About with Richard McCarthy: Turn on, tune in, drop out: Exploring Timothy Leary’s Pioneer Valley roots

02-29-2024 2:18 PM

By RICHARD MCCARTHY

I suspect a fair number of readers are aware who Timothy Leary was, and more still have heard his name as part of the lexicon of popular culture. For those who do not know, he was one of the more famous (or infamous, depending on your perspective)...


Speaking of Nature: From rare to regular: The Carolina Wren may soon become a regular backyard bird for all of us

02-27-2024 2:53 PM

By BILL DANIELSON

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), 2023 was the warmest year ever recorded. I remember it being hot in the summertime, but I think the effect of this heat was most noticed by me in the autumn. The Thinking Chair...


Best Bites: Ordering off the kid’s menu: 9-year-old budding food critic shares his top 15 places to eat

02-23-2024 2:23 PM

By AZAI DUGGER and ROBIN GOLDSTEIN

Note from Robin Goldstein: For this column, I asked my 9-year-old nephew and co-author Azai Dugger to choose his favorite restaurants and briefly describe each one — the same task as I undertook for my last Gazette column.With great difficulty and...


Valley Bounty: Empowering our local food system: River Valley Co-op invests in regional farms and the interests of community

02-23-2024 2:22 PM

By JACOB NELSON

In just 15 years, River Valley Co-op has grown into an indispensable part of the local food economy. For local farms, food businesses and community members who want easy access to local food, their continued growth is something to celebrate.“River...


The ABCs of children’s books: ‘Alphabet Soup’ at the Eric Carle Museum looks at how picture books come to life

02-23-2024 2:22 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art has no shortage of material to draw on for exhibits.Aside from highlighting work from traveling exhibits, or showcasing illustrations of specific artists drawn from various sources, the Amherst museum can...


There is a Season with Molly Parr: Inspired by an old favorite: Mushroom Infinity is delicious, vegan and can be gluten-free

02-23-2024 2:21 PM

By MOLLY PARR

Not quite 30 years ago, I studied in Manhattan. I had my first computer and went online for the first time. Back then I still found most of my news from actual newspapers, and social media didn’t exist. Even though the “Seinfeld Diner” was practically...


Weekly Food Photo Contest: This week’s winner: Robert D. Shycon of Northampton

02-23-2024 2:20 PM

‘Buns both naked and glazed,” writes winning photographer Robert D. Shycon of Northampton. “My wife, Linda Dell, makes these cinnamon buns with sourdough starter she began in the Great Sourdough Start-up of 2020.”How to enter: Snap a pic of something...


Book Bag: ‘What’s New, Daniel?’ by Micha Archer; ‘Monkeyface’ by Judith Podell

02-23-2024 2:18 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

What’s New, Daniel?Written and illustrated by Micha ArcherPenguin/Random HouseIn the last several years, Leverett illustrator and children’s book author Micha Archer has been gaining increasing attention for her eye-catching art and for stories that...


A league of their own: Division Q, a new basketball league created by and for queer players, hopes to grow after successful first season

02-22-2024 1:52 PM

By HANNAH BEVIS

Every Sunday morning from November to early February, dozens of people rolled up to Easthampton Mountain View school to play basketball.Games started at 10 a.m., but players always showed up early to shoot around and warm up (some sleepier than...


New year, new look: Bombyx Center adds more varied arts programming to its lineup while making infrastructure improvements

02-22-2024 1:30 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

What a difference a year makes.Late last May, the Northampton Fire Department abruptly shut down virtually all music performances at the Bombyx Center for Arts & Equity in Florence, citing inadequate fire prevention measures at the venue.The move...


The Beat Goes On: The Back Porch Festival is just three weeks away, and the Iron Horse announces its opening lineup

02-22-2024 12:25 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

If you’re like me, counting the days to spring, it’s a little over three weeks to the official first day, March 19.Yet that’s just a date on the calendar, and the weather in mid-March can still spell winter. But one antidote to that is to hit the Back...


Literary musing and gatherings: Amherst College host its ninth annual LitFest this weekend

02-22-2024 12:20 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Amherst College has sent many a successful writer into the world, or brought them in to teach: David Foster Wallace, Robert Frost, Richard Wilbur, Robert Stone, Lauren Groff, Chris Bohjalian, Charles Mann and many others.That legacy will be celebrated...


Speaking of Nature: Midnight wail — The call of the Red Fox

02-20-2024 9:22 AM

By BILL DANIELSON

It was early in the morning.  I had a fresh cup of coffee and a little something to nibble on as I sat down at my computer and tried to make a decision.  What was I going to write about this week?  There were two ideas rattling around in my head but...


Valley Bounty: CSA season gets jump on growing season next week

02-16-2024 4:07 PM

By LISA GOODRICH

Though more weeks of winter lie ahead, National Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) week — Feb. 19-25 — marks the symbolic start of the CSA cycle, when member sign-ups start rolling in and participating farmers begin planning for the coming growing...


From Holland with love: Julia van IJken takes up more of the reins with Young@Heart Chorus

02-16-2024 3:59 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

In the early days of the COVID-19 lockdown, Julia van IJken was at her parents’ home in the Netherlands, unable to travel back to England, where she’d been working on a master’s program in art and communication at the Royal College of Art in...


Music festivals small and large: Jazz Shares mini-fest and a new outdoor indie rock festival are headed to Northampton

02-16-2024 3:54 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

It’s still winter, but music festivals, small and large, are in the works. Here’s a look at some coming events, one that’s imminent and one further down the road.First off, Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares is offering a mini-fest next weekend, Feb. 22-25,...



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