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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Northampton, Forbes Library Talk

July 15 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm EDT

The Civil Rights Movement — The Right to Vote: Past, Present, Future

The Right to Vote: Past, Present, Future is a series of four events, each starting with a presentation by a panel of speakers, followed by group discussion.

The second event explores the Civil Rights movement and historical background, from the 1890’s Mississippi plan through Jim Crow, poll taxes, Voting Rights Act of 1965, to present-day challenges.

Four speakers will present historical context and guide discussion. The presenters are:

Dr. John H. Bracey, Jr., Professor of Afro-American Studies at UMass Amherst; Dr. Traci Parker, Assistant Professor of Afro-American Studies at UMass Amherst; Dr. Jesse Rhodes, Professor of Political Science at UMass Amherst; Dr. Kathleen Banks Nutter, historian, independent scholar (Moderator).

PLEASE PREREGISTER and we will send you the Zoom link.

Browse our online programs by selecting the category “Virtual” in our online calendar.

About the Library
Forbes Library was designed by architect William C. Brocklesby of Hartford, Conn. in a style known as Richardsonian Romanesque, named after the work of Henry Hobson Richardson, the designer of Trinity Church in Boston. This style is characterized by the use of contrasting light and dark color stones (granite and sandstone), massive rounded arches resting on short, squat columns and complex roof systems. The library was dedicated on October 23, 1894.

According to the First Annual Report of the Trustees in 1895:
“After January 1, 1891, and a visit to many large libraries the trustees proceeded to erect the building. It is built of Milford granite with Longmeadow sandstone trimming, is estimated to accommodate 400,000 volumes, is unusually well adapted for library purposes, is an ornament to the city and praised by all visitors. Its cost was $113, 993.48…”

Guastavino Arches
One unique feature of the Forbes Library is the use of Guastavino arches, which had also beenused in the Boston Public Library. These brick arches, which support the first and second floors, from modular units or bays, of 17 x 14.8 feet. Judge Forbes had mandated in his will that the building be fireproof. The Guastavino arches are part of this safety design and are constructed of brick covered with white clay tile.

“The crowning glory of inflammability was the roof.” Erected by the Berlin Iron Bridge Company, it was constructed entirely of steel girders covered with slate roofing tiles. Each separate slate was tied through with a nail by the roofer on the outside and was then twisted around a support rod by a worker inside the roof structure.

Judge Forbes had also insisted that the building be set aside from all other buildings so that there was no danger of it catching fire from a nearby structure. Thus, the building stands alone on a lovely, raised, park-like lot, and was called by many residents of Northampton “the castle on the hill.”

Details

Date:
July 15
Time:
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Venue

Forbes Library
20 West Street
Northampton, MA 01060
+ Google Map
Phone:
(413) 587-1016
Website:
www.forbeslibrary.org