{short description of image} 1st Traveler's Choice

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The Berkshires

of Western Massachusetts

Things to See and Do in the Berkshires
Lenox, Richmond, Stockbridge, & Becket

Edith Wharton's The Mount







Calendar of Events

Museums & Galleries

Architectural Wonders


Armstrong Chamber Concerts
Lenox Town Hall, Lenox (413) 637-3646

Using world-renowned musicians, the Armstrong group offers their unique programs of musical enrichment. The Armstrong Chamber Concerts season runs traditionally from October through June.
Becket Arts Center
Route 8, Becket (413) 528-5471

Located in an historic 1850's Greek Revival School, the center features 8 revolving exhibitions of Berkshire artists and 20 different art workshops taught by local artists. Topics from basket making, to writing, to painting and more. Children's workshops for ages 6 to 12 too.
Berkshire Botanical Garden
Rtes 102 & 183, Stockbridge (413) 298-3926

Founded in 1934, the garden is one of the oldest horticultural centers in the U.S. featuring over 200 varieties of day lilies, spring daffodils, and flowering crab apples. Its greenhouses are filled with succulents, and there's a gorgeous primrose walkway and an assortment of rock gardens.
Berkshire Theater Festival
Main Street, Stockbridge (413) 298-5536

This festival boasts the 2nd-oldest summer theater in America. Originally known as the Berkshire Playhouse, first opened its doors in 1928. Since then, many of America's most noted thespians have graced the stage to perform everything from Wilder to Helllman to Williams. The theater's cumulative cast has included the likes of James Cagney, Lionel Barrymore, Lilian Gish, Kathryn Hepburn, Michael Keaton, Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman, and Al Pacino.
4 Williamsville Road (off Rte. 183), Stockbridge (413) 298-3579

The 122-acre Chesterwood, located just minutes from downtown Stockbridge, is where sculptor Daniel Chester French (1850-1931) spent his summers in the 1920's. French is most noted for having sculpted the Lincoln Memorial statue. French also sculpted the famous Minute Man statue in Concord, and the working models he used for the Minute Man and the Lincoln Memorial are both on display at Chesterwood, his combination vacation home and studio.
Edith Wharton's The Mount
2 Plunkett Street, Lenox (413) 637-1899

Novelist Edith Wharton loved architecture as much as she did writing, and that shows in every detail of her summer home, which she affectionately named "The Mount."

The Mount is fashioned after a 17th-century English estate, but features a French courtyard and an Italianate terrace. The garden's resplendent colors and seamless design once prompted the author to proclaim, ""Decidedly, I'm a better landscape gardener than novelist." The Mount is open to the public from May through October and will celebrate its 100th birthday during the summer of 2002.

Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival
George Carter Road, Becket, MA (413) 243-0745.

Pre-festival hours (May 15 to June 17): Monday to Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Festival hours (June 18 to August 27): Mondays and Tuesdays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Wednesdays to Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., and Sundays from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

The oldest dance festival in America, The Pillow (the name given to the festival's outdoor performance venue) was designed by Joseph Franz, the renowned architect responsible for designing the Boston Symphony Orchestra's Tanglewood Shed. the Pillow attracts elite artists from the United States, France, Japan, Ireland, Africa, Sweden, Brazil, Spain, Canada, and The Netherlands. Each summer the Pillow showcases everything from ballet to Flamenco to contemporary gyrations set to hip-hop.
Merwin House
14 Main Street, Stockbridge (413) 298-4703

This late Federal-era brick house was built in 1825, just above the Housatonic River in one of the most picturesque spots in Massachusetts. The William and Elizabeth Doane family purchased the home in 1875 and proceeded to turn it into one of Stockbridge's more charming summer homes. The home is now the property of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities. It is open for seasonal tours.
Mission House
Main Street, Stockbridge (413) 298-32339

John Sergeant, the first missionary to the Stockbridge Indians, built this simple frame house for his bride, Abigail, in 1739. The home's period furnishings include a bookcase and chairs belonging to Sergeant. Herbs and bright perennials grow in the colonial garden, and visitors are welcomed to the house by a striking Connecticut doorway that, according to legend, had to be hauled to Stockbridge by a team of oxen.
Naumkeag House and Gardens
Prospect Hill Road, Stockbridge, MA (413) 298-3239

This 26-room gabled mansion offers visitors an insightful peak into the gilded age and features a collection of gardens that rank amongst America's most beautiful. The home was designed in 1886 by noted architect Stanford White. Landscape architect Fletcher Steel helped create the gardens. Joseph Hodges Choate, a noted attorney and an ambassador to England, turned Naumkeag into his summer home towards the end of the 19th century, and the rooms today remain graciously appointed with relics from the Choate family's affluent lifestyle.
Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary
West Mountain Road, Lenox (413) 637-0320

The 1,500-acre sanctuary features 7 miles of scenic trails and a museum open from May to October and The forest, brooks, beaver ponds, meadows, and slopes of beautiful Lenox Mountain all complement one another in creating a well-balanced ecosystem. The sanctuary's vast landscape also features a hemlock gorge, a limestone cobble, and a hummingbird garden.
Richmond Performance Series
Route 41, Richmond (413) 298-2837

Mark Ludwig, a violist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, serves as artistic director of this performance series, which involves providing opportunities for music students to share the stage with professionals. Ludwig's BSO colleagues often perform as featured artists.
Ventfort Hall
104 Walker Street, Lenox

This 1893 Elizabethan Revival mansion was designed by Rotch and Tilden for Sarah Spencer Morgan and her husband, George Hale Morgan. An exterior of brick and Longmeadow redstone creates a somber and formidable look befitting the Bostonian aristocracy that flocked to the Berkshires in the late 19th century to build mansions that they referred to as their "summer cottages."

More Attractions in the Berkshires:
Pittsfield, Hancock, North Adams & Williamstown
Great Barrington, Ashley Falls, & Sheffield

Great Barrington
Mount Washington
New Marlborough
North Adams
West Stockbridge
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