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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Zoar Outdoor, Opens for the Season
June 13 - June 30
We’re all looking forward to a much-anticipated adventure this summer, and we can’t think of a more exciting activity to do right now than whitewater rafting! You and your group can go on a private guided trip on the Deerfield River where you’ll feel the warm breeze on your face, touch the cool, refreshing water, and have some fun on the rushing rapids!
We have a rafting trip for all abilities. Book your next adventure today and get free cancellation insurance for any future trip. Zoar Outdoor’s whitewater rafting tours are officially kicking off on June 13th, and we’d love to have you join us on the ultimate whitewater rafting expedition.
Take your family, office, church, or scout group rafting on the Deerfield River’s most popular rafting section, Zoar Gap. With a minimum age of 7, these Class II whitewater rapids with one Class III rapid are ideal for beginner rafters.
Our full day ten-mile white water rafting trip on Zoar Gap begins at Fife Brook Dam in Florida, Massachusetts. Rapids such as Microwave, Freight Train, and Pinball allow crews to hone their skills in preparation for the exciting class III whitewater of Zoar Gap. Below the Gap, we pull over in a state forest for a delicious picnic-style lunch with homemade salads, sandwiches, and cookies. After lunch there are opportunities to swim or simply relax as we raft back to our basecamp where hot showers and a slide show of the day’s adventure await.
The 12:30 Half-Day Gap trip runs just the beautiful upper Fife Brook section ending with the class III Zoar Gap. This trip pairs perfectly with a morning zip trip for a full day of adventure. This trip does not include food.
Zoar Gap Rafting
Kayaking down Massachusetts’ Deerfield River is a great way to see the Berkshires and spend a warm summer day outside and active! These boats are easy to paddle and very stable, making them a great way to get a taste of whitewater kayaking with minimal instruction.
While these trips are not instructional clinics, they are a wonderful way to explore the Deerfield River with a guide close by to offer support, paddling suggestions and insight into the natural and cultural history of the area.
Featuring both Class I and II rapids, as well as opportunities to swim and splash in the waters of the Deerfield, this trip provides a wonderful afternoon adventure for families, schools, scout and camp groups. We meet at 1:45 pm each day and the trip takes about 3 to 3 1/2 hours, including registration, outfitting and transportation to the river.
Browse our activities and find your ideal trip today. No matter when your adventure is, we guarantee it will be a fun experience in the great outdoors!
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