Weekend in (Western) New England

New England @ 1 Arc Second

New England @ 1 Arc Second (Photo credit: Kevin M. Gill)

Or: what to do here when you’ve got 72 hours and some disposable income.

I guess I’ll have to divide this up by season since what’s fun to do in this area really depends on what season you visit in.

Winter:

Well skiing, of course.  I live about 20 minutes from  of one of the oldest ski areas in the region   – The Blandford Ski Area (grew up in Blandford, in fact)  We’re 90 minutes from Mt Snow in Vermont, and about 45 mins from several ski resorts in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains.  Unfortunately, this past season was a bust with such a warm winter but I’d be willing to bet we’ll make up for it next year.  Shopping:  The largest mall in the Northeast is a 15 minute drive away from me – the Holyoke Mall at Ingleside.

Holyoke Mall at Ingleside

Holyoke Mall at Ingleside (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sports:  The Basketball Hall of Fame is located in downtown Springfield MA and there’s a nice hotel right next door and good food just a walk down the block,  & provided you go during the day – you’ll be relatively safe.  There’s also the Springfield Falcons Hockey Team that plays at the MassMutual  Center. Or you can take a trip out to Boston and see the Bruins or the Celtics play.  A 40 minute drive north  from  me will bring you to the Yankee Candle Flagship Store.  The Bavarian Castle there is always a treat to see – and you can make your own candles if you want.

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Basketball Hall of Fame (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Spring:  Get here in late winter and you can visit the local maple sugar farms and see how its done!  You can even get a great breakfast at them if you are hungry.  Ripley’s Farm in Blandford is a nice place to go for this, and they make great breakfasts during sugar season.  When I lived in Blandford, The Ripley’s tapped our maple trees to make some of their syrup.  Local area parks to visit as the weather warms include Westfield’s own Stanley Park & Look Park in Northampton.

Summer:  Four Words – Six Flags New England, baby!  Ok, that was five – but you get my drift! ;)  Literally, one town away from me. We don’t go as often as the kids would like, but my husband won free season passes for this coming summer and the girls got them as Christmas presents – Woo Hoo!!!!  Fenway Park and a Sox Game are always good, provided you don’t mind paying THROUGH the nose for the nosebleed seats.  Go see a game at the “Great Green Church of Baseball”.  Definitely worth every penny.

Français : Galerie de la presse au Fenway Park...

Fenway Park press box, Boston, Massachusetts, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mystic Aquarium is a 2 hour drive down to CT.  Mystic Seaport is also a lot of fun!  We’re only a couple of hours away from the Northeast’s Premiere Beaches  and of course Cape Cod!   Take a Yankee Fleet Boat out of Gloucester and do a Whale Watch!  Visit Rockport, take a drive up to Hampton Beach NH and brave the chilly waves there.  It’s really all within reach.  If you want to stay more local then consider getting tickets to a concert at Tanglewood in Lenox MA.  I highly recommend James Taylor – if you can snag tickets – don’t pass them up!

Fall:  New England is definitely THE place to be at this time of year.  Go apple picking in Granville MA and be sure to buy some Granville Cheese.  Fabulous.  Take a drive up to Route 2 and see the Mohawk Trail.

The "Hail to the Sunrise" statue at ...

The "Hail to the Sunrise" statue at Mohawk Park, along the Mohawk Trail in Charlemont, Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Leaf Peeping – it’s what we do in October. Visit Deerfield MA and go to the fall craft show there, and stroll through Old Deerfield while you are at it.  Colonial New England at its finest.  Go see the Patriots play at Gillette Stadium. If football  is your thing you won’t see it played better anywhere else. Lastly, be sure to go to Salem MA  at Halloween time.  There are no words, just go…. you’ll thank me later.

While you’re at it, stop by and see me. I can probably be talked into going with you on your adventure!    Jussayin…..  ;)