Local historical societies open their doors for a day-long event in the hills

Posted: 2022-08-07 21:36:19

Modified: 08/07/2022 21:33:02

“If you don’t have the current story prequel, you don’t understand how things work today,” said Stacy Koncrabecky.

Koncrabecky is the organizer of the Hilltown History Trail, which runs Saturday, August 13 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. During this day, historical societies in the area will be open at the same time, allowing visitors to drive to each location and explore them. everything.

“Most museums have limited hours and rely on volunteers, so if people want to visit them, it takes several days and a lot of planning,” Koncrabecky said.

This is the first year of the program and six companies are participating. Koncrabecky explained that this is a medium-sized program, with room to expand to other museums in the region next year.

“Anyone who spends time in the tiny museums nestled in the hills of western Franklin County will have their eyes opened to some amazing relationships,” said Michael McCusker, president of the Buckland Historical Society.

The Massachusetts Cultural Council provided this event with a festival grant of $1,500. This money was used for a graphic designer, marketing materials and flyers for the event.

“We’re always looking for new ways to get people to see our great collection. It’s a great way to do that,” said Carla Ness, president of the Cummington Historical Society.

At each location there will be a “treasure hunt”. Participants will receive a sheet of paper with questions that can be answered by finding artifacts in each location. It will be family fun, for children and adults alike, according to the organizers.

Koncrabecky highlighted that there is a garden and farm tour, a textile tour and a pottery tour in the area. A visit to the historical society can just be added to the list of attractions that already exist in West County and attract people from all over the region and beyond.

Many volunteers from the various museums noted that there was a real intimacy in these small museums in the hills. Compared to larger institutions, people feel they are connecting and engaging with more material, even though these smaller museums are operating on a “minimum” budget.

Cummington will open his 1800s Tavern for the day. Plainfield will display a doctor’s office dating back to 1824. The Buckland Historical Society will show the possessions of James Avery, the man who raised the largest oxen in the world in the late 1800s, and the other historical societies will show many other artifacts that give new meaning to the region.

“It’s about creating a place, what makes a place attractive isn’t all you find there now with shops and galleries, it’s also the story of what came before,” said Koncrabecky.

Today’s map and more information can be found on their HilltownHistoryTrail.org website.

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