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Life & Times

"Hummingbirds" teacher Cailey Bloomgarden-Bredin shows Elizabeth Hoffman, 5, a water creature found in Fire Pond during a summer camp session for 5-year-olds at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary in Easthampton. 
Kevin Gutting photo/Adam Orth illustration

Learning naturally: Nature programs take the classroom outside

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

As he crested a densely wooded, moss-covered hill in the middle of Conway’s pine forest, Edwin Anderson, 13, of Greenfield yelled, “Wow, come and look at this!” At his call, a half-dozen other kids scrambled up the hill. Some dropped to their knees as they examined a huge brown mushroom protruding from the pine needles on the forest floor. Moments later, Frank Grindrod of Conway knelt in the middle of the group and began to inspect the fungal wonder. “See how it’s all shaggy on top and on the stipe? This is called ‘The Old Man of the Woods.’” he said. “Oh, and look at … 0

Hooked: Reporter David Rainville reels in a good time on the Quabbin Reservoir

Friday, August 22, 2014

The first rule of fishing in a rented boat on the Quabbin Reservoir is simple: get there early. Gate 31 off Route 122 in New Salem opens at 6 a.m. and that could already be too late depending on the day and the number of cars already in line when the lock comes … 0

What you need to know if you want to go fishing on the Quabbin Reservoir

Friday, August 22, 2014

NEW SALEM — If you want to rent a boat at the Quabbin Reservoir and spend the day on the water, you’ll need two things: cash and an alarm clock. Rentals start at 6 a.m. and it’s best to show up before the gate opens. Even on a weekday, it’s not unusual to see cars lining up before 5:30 a.m., since boats are … 0

Between the Rows: master gardeners

Friday, August 29, 2014

Over 200 master gardeners are volunteering their knowledge and energy up and down the Pioneer Valley. You might have called upon them to test your soil at local farmers markets, or found them answering questions at the Big … 0

BetweenTheRows: Weeds in my garden

Friday, August 22, 2014

Weeds. The weeds are thriving in my garden. In the middle of August when we are getting ready for the Heath Fair there is no longer even a pretense that I am keeping up with the weeds. This … 0

Speaking of Nature: West Basin birds

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I had been so mesmerized by the loon that I completely forgot about my camera bag. It was only when I turned back to look for it that I realized how far I had walked. The bag was … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in our area

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Northfield Mountain 99 Millers Falls Road (Route 63), Northfield. 413-659-3714 or 800-859-2960. Owned and operated by FirstLight Power Resources. www.firstlightpower.com ∎ Ahoy, Matey! Kids Cruise on Board the Quinnetukut. Saturday, Sept. 6, from 11 to 11:40 a.m. or … 0

Savoring the Seasons: Corn, conversations and cookbooks!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

By MARY MCCLINTOCK Thanks to a kind invitation by Zenaida Diaz, Activities Director at Poet’s Seat Health Care Center in Greenfield, I spent a LOVELY hour last Friday chatting and enjoying locally grown treats with Poet’s Seat residents. We sat around a big table, munching on cherry tomatoes … 0

‘Days and Moments’ like a good story told by a neighbor

Friday, August 22, 2014

Reading “Days and Moments, Moments and Days” is like sitting on a friendly neighbor’s porch listening to stories of, and musings on, days gone by. The book collects prose and poetry by the Well Done Writers. The members … 0

Poets of Franklin County: The houses that Emily Dickinson built

Friday, August 15, 2014

Walk or drive down Silver Street near Greenfield High School and you’ll see that three new houses have cropped up on what used to be a wide, grassy lawn. No, it’s not a sudden housing boom but an … 0

Between the Rows: Sunny flowers for August

Friday, August 15, 2014

I am an August baby, born under the sign of Leo, and I am in love with the sun and the golden rays of summer-blooming flowers. In fact, many summer flowers like black-eyed Susans, sunflowers and heleniums do … 0

The Newbie: What, wonders our reporter, will happen when she hits the rapids?

Friday, August 8, 2014

Editor’s Note: This is the first in a series of occasional features in which staff reporter Kathleen McKiernan writes about her experiences learning new skills; hence its name: “The Newbie.” The dark black waves sucked me forward. I … 0

Blue Plate Special: Cooking with heart at Shelburne Falls’ Hearty Eats

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

By TINKY WEISBLAT Special to The Recorder A few years ago, Andrea Beaudoin was all business. Today, her business — Hearty Eats on Bridge Street in Shelburne Falls — has a lot of heart. The 30-year-old Conway resident … 0