Upcoming Events In Western Mass
We strive to post the most current and accurate event information but changes and cancellations do occur so please check the official event website to confirm all details.
When you think back to some of your favorite childhood moments, very few of them probably happened when you were sitting at home watching TV. Instead, your most poignant memories probably revolve around that time you ended up with the home run ball at a baseball game, and the crowd cheered and you felt like a rock star, or at least like Babe Ruth.
Or maybe it was that time your family attended The Big E together and your dad bought you cotton candy and let you get all sticky-faced, and you watched your mom beat the midway games, and you felt like your heart was going to overflow with contentment and happiness.
In Western Massachusetts, events bring us together to celebrate our successes and recollect on our heritage. We’ve put together a list of some of the top yearly events in Massachusetts, things we and our local friends love doing to feel connected to our area and our community.
Top Yearly Western Massachusetts Events
Because of the beautiful area where we live, there are distinct Western Massachusetts-specific events that take place in each and every season. From leaf peeping in the fall to river rafting in the spring to skiing in the winter, you can find a wide range of things to do throughout the year, and some of our local events reflect the joyous beauty of our seasons.
Top Western Massachusetts Events for Spring
Springfield Annual Pancake Breakfast
Does anything scream “neighborly get-together more than a pancake breakfast? If your mouth is already watering over the thought of fluffy, buttery, syrupy goodness, you’re not going to want to miss the Springfield Annual Pancake Breakfast, typically hosted in May in downtown Springfield.
Bring your appetite, because it’s billed as the World’s Largest Pancake Breakfast, and be ready to feast on both good food and friendly conversation.
Paradise City Arts Festival (Northampton)
This Paradise City Arts Festival is ranked among the best in the country, and includes exhibits from more than 250 artists in all mediums. Artists flock to Western Massachusetts from around the country to be part of this visually dazzling display.
Come out to enjoy the weather that’s not quite summer, not quite spring, and stay to buy way too much from the vast selection of contemporary art pieces on display.
Brimfield Outdoor Antique Show
With spring in the air, you’ll want to get out and enjoy the largest outdoor antique and collectible show in the country. The Brimfield Outdoor Antique Show features over 5000 dealers throughout the quaint country town of Brimfield. And once is never enough – they do this in July and September, too!
Top Western Massachusetts Events for Summer
Baseball Season Opening Night
Baseball is the quintessential American pastime, and there’s really nothing that can top the nostalgia of being present on opening night.
The Westfield Starfires and Valley Blue Sox will kick off their seasons right at the start of the summer, and both promise to bring plenty of excitement to the community. Be sure you arrive ahead of gametime to root, root, root for the home team.
Yankee Candle Christmas in July
We love the unforgettable scents of the holiday season. Fir and balsam, spicy gingerbread, warm apple cider – the list could go on and on.
So naturally, Christmas in July is a must. At the flagship Yankee Candle Village, you can enjoy the holiday season, snap selfies with Santa (who might have traded in his traditional red velvet for a more relaxed Hawaiian shirt vibe) and enjoy crafting with Mrs. Claus.
It’s just what you need to get a little dose of holiday spirit and deal with the fact that you probably won’t be decorating your tree for at least a couple more months.
Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement
Meet Basketball’s best in the birthplace of the sport! Each summer, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame enshrines the best in the sport in Springfield. Rub elbows with the greatest to play the game and save time for a tour of the Hoop Hall.
Top Western Massachusetts Events for Fall
The Big E
Would this even be a reliable listing of Western Massachusetts events if The Big E weren’t included? The community gathering, more formally known as the Eastern States Exposition, is the biggest and best county fair you could imagine.
Every fall, The Big E brings together amazing food, parades, musical entertainment, agricultural exhibitions, car shows and more. There’s so much to see, do and taste – you’ll need more than one day to fully enjoy all The Big E has to offer.
Six Flags New England’s Fright Fest
Each autumn, Six Flags New England transforms into a fright-filled funzone for teens and adults. You’ll find scary shows, walk-through attractions and thrill rides that make the most of the season.
Top Western Massachusetts Events for Winter
Springfield, Parade of the Big Balloons
Can’t quite make it to New York City for the Thanksgiving parade? We’ve got you covered, with the Parade of the Big Balloons in downtown Springfield.
Enjoy bands, community gatherings and balloons that represent the best Western Mass has to offer – our favorite is definitely the 75-foot Cat in the Hat balloon.
Bright Nights at Forest Park
Holiday memories are made at Bright Nights at Forest Park. It’s just not the holiday season until you’ve driven through this holiday lighting extravaganza! Look for Santa’s Magical Forest, Dinosaur World and Seuss Land – it’ll become an annual tradition after the first mile.
Holyoke St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Run, walk or float over to the Holyoke St. Patrick’s Day Parade. This celebration of Irish heritage brings more than 400,000 guests to the community for a parade, music, food and fun.
It also includes traditional performances by the Holyoke Caledonian Pipe Band and the Road Race, Western New England’s largest race (featuring a 10k, a 2 mile walk and a Kids Fun Run).
Community events help us to celebrate what we have in common – a love of the arts, of sport, of nature. The human connection these events create is so important to both mental and physical well-being.
If you’d like to learn more about these community events and dozens of others coming up in Western Mass, or about the top yearly events in Massachusetts, check out our Events listings and customize a schedule just for you. Or, contact us, and let our team of knowledgeable locals help you prepare for a fun and unforgettable Western Mass adventure.
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Elms College, Polish Film Festival
September 29, 2019 @ 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm EDT
In this, the 75th anniversary year of the Warsaw Uprising, New England Chapter of the Kosciuszko Foundation and Elms College are sponsoring the 18th Polish Film Festival. The Warsaw Uprising was the single-largest military effort taken by any European resistant movement during World War II.
The Man Who Killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot, written and directed by Pioneer Valley resident Robert D. Krzykowski, is a critical exploration of the toxic nature of ideas and how they can spread virally beyond the person that created them. “The movie speaks in parables and rhymes, so where Hitler is spreading a plague of ideas in World War II, we have The Bigfoot carrying a literal plague in 1987 — threatening life as we know it once again,” he said.
The film will be screened Sept. 29 at 2 p.m. at Alumnae Theater at Elms College. A discussion with Krzykowski will follow.
There is no admission charge for the films, but a free-will offering will be welcomed. Seating is limited.
The rest of the film series features:
Oct. 2, 7 p.m., Warsaw 44 — This story takes place in Nazi-occupied Warsaw in 1944 as the Home Army plans the uprising. Young Poles reach adulthood under brutal occupation and are committed to free Poland. They remain hungry for life, passionate and impatient and live as if every day were their last, not because they’re reckless, but because when death lurks around every corner, it’s the only way to live.
Oct. 9, 7 p.m., The Butler — The film tells the true story of the Prussian family von Krauss living in the Puck area, as well as the love between the Kashubian boy Mateusz and the German aristocrat Marita and is set between 1900 and 1945. The script depicts the complicated fate of three nations inhabiting the former Polish-German borderland in northern Kashubia, where the line of the border in Versailles after the World War I divided not only the land but also the people. Through four decades hostility and hatred increase among the Kashubs, Poles and Germans. When World War II breaks out, the Nazis murder civilians in the Piaśnica Forest.
Oct. 16, 7 p.m., Squadron 303 Heroes of the Battle of Britain — In the summer of 1940 the RAF hastily assembles the 303 squadron made up of exclusively Polish airmen who have made their way across the English Channel following the Nazi invasion of their homeland. Their bravery and fearless flying make them the envy of the British airmen.
Oct. 23, 7 p.m., Cold War — Nominated for three Academy Awards, Cold War is an epic romance between two people of different backgrounds and temperaments set against the backdrop of the Cold War in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s. As performing musicians forced to play into the Soviet propaganda machine, they dream of escaping to the creative freedom of the West. But one day, as they spot their chance to make a break for Paris, both make a decision that will mark their lives forever.
For more information about The New England Chapter of the Kosciuszko Foundation go to thekf.org