The Berkshires is a region that experiences four distinct seasons. Each of those seasons offers sensory treasures to travelers.
New England fall is, of course, the stuff of legends, and here in the Berkshires, the mountains that make us great are lit afire with the vivid palette of fall leaf colors. There’s also plenty of time for hiking before the frostiness of winter sets in, and the weather is perfect for strolling, shopping, and more.
Winter offers its own gifts. Downhill and cross-country skiing, tubing, and other outdoor winter sports will keep you busy, and world-class restaurants will warm your belly. Museums, galleries and shops feed your soul when you aren’t on the slopes.
In the spring, the trees awaken from slumber and the hills come alive once again. The strong farm-to-table cuisine scene readies to serve you the freshest food available, while farmers are busy planting the local food that will delight you come summertime.
Ah yes, summertime.
Here are a few recommendations for feeding your senses as we enter this second half of the summer:
Tanglewood. Tanglewood is a legendary destination for so many reasons. Located right here in Lenox MA, for 75 years Tanglewood has attracted world-class talent, presenting world-class music throughout the summer. Tickets to excellent shows are still available through the
summer, but seats do fill, so it’s best to get your tickets in advance – and arrive early! Musical styles are diverse – Tanglewood is not just about classical music anymore. Harry Connick Jr. is among the upcoming acts that will take the Tanglewood stage later this season. This is a quintessential Berkshires experience that you should not miss.
Farmers’ Markets. Browse any of the several local markets for a taste of summer, straight from the tree, the vine, or the earth. Lenox’s Farmers’ Market is just a short walk from Hampton Terrace.
Dinner On The Patio. Outdoor dining – it’s what to do in the summertime. Café Lucia, here in Lenox, has a lovely outdoor garden for your fine dining enjoyment, and they intergrate local organic produce into their menu. Alta Wine Bar is another great place to enjoy the summer air and a delicious wine, while you dine. Check out their excellent reviews on Trip Advisor.
Trails and Views. Don’t leave the Berkshires without seeking out a spectacular view and soaking it in. Berkshires.org provides some suggested hikes of varying levels. Descriptions of these hikes also include suggestions as to which ones include a great view.
It’s not too late to book your late summer accommodations. Call or email us anytime with questions. We are happy to provide a personal rate quote guaranteed for 30 days.
Photo above, courtesy of the Cafe Lucia website.
Last week here at Hampton Terrace, we welcomed Academy Award-winning theatre and film composer Alan Menken.
Menken was visiting Lenox as part of Broadway In the Berkshires, a glamorous charity evening to support Shakespeare & Company’s training and education programs.
We had the pleasure of hosting the VIP after-party for the event, here at Hampton Terrace. Exceptional chocolates from Joshua Needleman of Chocolate Springs, champagne and an impromptu sing-along with Menken extended an already sparkling evening, late into the night.
Alan played at least 10 of his many hits on our storied Steinway, with the Broadway In The Berkshires crowd singing at the top of their lungs.
The Academy is not the only institution that has honored his fine work with their recognition. Mencken is also a Golden Globe, Grammy, Tony and Drama Desk Awards winner, many times over. His career began in the late 70’s but really began to take hold in the early 80’s with his Drama Desk win for Little Shop of Horrors. Since then he has been a staple in the theatre and film industries – culminating (thus far) in his 20 years of compositions for the Walt Disney Pictures. An entire generation of children and families have loved classic Disney films including The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and many more.
What a delight to have him join us – and leave this behind:
The name Rockwell looms large in the American consciousness as an icon of American illustration, but Norman Rockwell was just one member of a family of artists. His wife also experimented with sculpture, drew, and painted, his son Peter became a sculptor - and his son Jarvis has forged his own path of contemporary conceptual work. It is Jarvis’ work that is featured until October 20 at the Normal Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA.
“Jarvis Rockwell: Maya, Illusion and Us” (http://www.nrm.org/2013/07/norman-rockwell-museum-presents-jarvis-rockwell-maya-illusion-and-us/) is a culmination of this Rockwell son’s life’s work so far, incorporating his fondness for concept, and his obsession with toys. Drawings and paintings from his early years are featured along with more recent constructed pieces. He will also work throughout the exhibit, on a drawing-in-progress, which will give visitors a chance to observe him at work.
Though his father was known for realism, the younger Rockwell says that reality is precisely what is explored through his own work, too – and that his father’s work was also, in its own way, a constructed reality.
An artist talk with Rockwell himself is set for August 15 at 5:30 at the Norman Rockwell Museum. His wife, Nova Rockwell, is an artist and educator and will lead a day of art exploration for children in conjunction with the exhibit, Monday through Friday, July 22 through 26, 10am to 3pm, for ages 7 to 12. Jarvis Rockwell will also be present for this event.
This is a unique chance to experience not only the work of Norman Rockwell, but also one facet the artistic legacy that he left behind.
A peek at the 2013 performance schedule for Shakespeare & Co. reveals a cornucopia-bursting bounty of classic riches. Shakespeare himself is well-represented, but he is in very, very good company indeed, in this dense, luxurious season of theatre.
Love’s Labour’s Lost, Richard II, and a Midsummer Night’s Dream are joined by Mother Courage And Her Children (Bertolt Brecht), The Beauty Queen of Leenane (Martin McDonagh), and Moliere’s Les Faux Pas. The majority of these performances take place just a 9-minute walk from Hampton Terrace, at Shakespeare & Co.’s home base.
The setting for Shakespeare & Co’s production of Love’s Labors Lost has been updated, for this production from Shakespeare’s time, to the 1940’s. According to the Berkshire Eagle, director Lisa Wolpe has crafted, with her cast, a fresh production that takes pains to use the language, rather than rely solely upon physical comedy for laughs. This classic battle of the sexes runs until September 1.
Richard II is a far more serious play, full of politics, war, and shifting alliances, as a king seals his own fate. In an interview with the Boston Globe, director Timothy Douglas says “Richard was the first king in his family who practiced diplomacy first before going to war . . . so I consider him a visionary.” He also invites the audience to draw their own conclusions about who, in this broiling tale of succession, is right, and who is wrong. This show has a limited run, until July 21.
Another season highlight, and one that puts the “& Company” in Shakespeare & Company: Moliere’s Les Faux Pas. As is the case with all things Moliere, this show should be uproarious, clever and fun. According to Broadway World Boston, “With a recipe that includes pirates, clowns, sword fights, food fights, and hilariously-failed schemes, there is something for everyone in this madcap jaunt.” This saucy comedy runs through August 24.
For more information about these shows, and the rest of the S&C season, call the Box Office at (413) 637-3353 or visit www.Shakespeare.org.
Photo via the Shakespeare & Co. website...
For the art-enthusiast traveler, there is a current exhibit at the Clark Museum in Williamstown, MA, that is an absolute must-see experience. Winslow Homer: Making Art, Making History, features one of the best American artists of the 19th century.
Homer, a Massachusetts native was unique in his embrace and mastery of multiple genres of art, including illustration, watercolor painting, printmaking and oil painting. He inherited his mother’s artistic talent and at the young age of 19, began his artistic career as an apprentice for a lithographer. His career took him from printmaking, to magazine illustration of the Civil War (for which he spent time on the front lines, sketching battle scenes), to recognition as a painter – and indeed, one of the most prolific and respected artists of his century (despite the critics he encountered in his lifetime). He specialized in depicting scenes from everyday life, whether or not it was the fashion at the time.
This particular exhibit is culled from the extensive Homer collection created by Clark Museum Founder Sterling Robert Clark. Clark, successfully retired from a US Army career in 1910, had picked up a habit from his parents, of collecting art. When he married his wife Francine, they grew their collection together, and in 1915, the Clark’s acquired their first Homer. They continued to collect Homer until 1955, acquiring over 200 pieces.
The Clark displays some part of their Homer collection every year – this year’s exhibit also includes some works on loan, including some rarely-seen work from a private collection. The exhibit showcases the versatility of Homer, with pieces reflecting his mastery in a variety of media.
This exhibit will remain on display at the Clark until September 8,2013.
For more information, here is a review from the Boston Globe.
For more information from The Clark, about the exhibit, visit the Clark website.
For more information about great rooms at Hampton Terrace, a great place to stay in the Berkshires while you absorb the works of significant American artists? Check out our rooms and rates!
The work of art depicted in the photo above and the reproduction thereof are in the public domain worldwide. The reproduction is part of a collection of reproductions compiled by The Yorck Project. The compilation copyright is held by Zenodot Verlagsgesellschaft mbH and licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License
Our friends at Tanglewood sure do know how to plan a party. They recently announced the lineup for Labor Day weekend and it looks like it’s going to be a great weekend. On Saturday, there are two great shows: jazz and classical composer and improviser Donal Fox at 1 p.m. and piano-man Harry Connick, Jr. at 7 p.m. Then, on Sunday, the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra will close out the season at 2:30 p.m.
Tickets are available for both concerts individually. You may also purchase an all-day lawn pass for $40, which is good for admission to the lawn for both performances. Lawn pass holders will be permitted to remain on the grounds between the shows.
We’re going to up the ante by offering an either/or special: book a three-night stay and receive a 20 percent discount. If you prefer a shorter stay, we’ll waive the traditional three-night holiday minimum and reserve a two-night weekend stay as long as your stay includes Saturday night.
Donal Fox performs his Scarlatti Jazz Suite Project at Ozawa Hall on August 31. Mr. Fox creates music that bends the boundaries of genre, fusing jazz, classical, Latin and original music in ways that, according to Downbeat Magazine confound “the genre police.” He takes the stage at 1 p.m. on Saturday, August 31.
Fox was the first African-American composer-in-residence with the St. Louis Symphony. In 2008, he was awarded the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Letters Academy Award in Music. The annual prize is awarded to composers of "exceptional accomplishment" and "outstanding artistic achievement." From 2009-2011, Fox was Martin Luther King, Jr. Visiting Scholar at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Multi-award winning performer, composer, and philanthropist Harry Connick Jr. plays the Shed at Tanglewood at 7 p.m. on August 31 (talk about a day packed with amazing music). Connick and his band will play this performance in support of his current album Every Man Should Know, an album that explores life and love. Exclusive VIP meet-and-greet packages are available for this performance. The VIP package includes a post-concert reception and the opportunity to meet Harry Connick Jr.
For tickets to these special performances, and for more information about the VIP reception package for the Harry Connick Jr. show, call SymphonyCharge at 617-266-1200 or 888-266-1200 (Mon-Fri, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sat 12 noon to 6 p.m.) or visit www.tanglewood.org for tickets.
They’ve got the music and we’ve got your rooms – ready upon arrival – for your Labor Day Weekend vacation.
*Photo via the Tanglewood website.
Just minutes from Hampton Terrace, a first Friday tradition lets you enjoy the summer air and enjoy the arts all at once: The First Friday Artswalks in neighboring Pittsfield.
First Friday Artswalks fall on the first Friday of each month on North St. Pittsfield, in the Upstreet Cultural District. These Artswalks feature gallery exhibits, work from individual artists, and displays by the hospitality businesses along the corridor as well. You will find art everywhere – in galleries, bars, restaurants, even medical centers and real estate offices.
The monthly Artswalk kicks off the month’s exhibits for the participating venues, and each month the exhibits change.
This sample program from the June event gives you an idea of the layout, the diversity of the destinations, and the density of the offerings. The July program will be posted shortly on the event site.
A variety of artistic media are represented each month – photography, sculpture, paintings, and more await your discovery. Live music is also featured as part of the Artswalk experience, depending on the month. Both local/regional artists and artists from further abroad are invited to show their work.
For more information about the First Friday Artswalks, visit the event website or call 413-499-9348. First Friday Artswalks also has a Facebook page.