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Life & Times

A maple tree puts on a show of its fall colors in New Salem on South Main Street. In the distance is the Quabbin Reservoir.
Recorder/Paul Franz

Paul Franz, Franklin County's photographer

Friday, July 25, 2014

One recent morning when senior Recorder photographer Paul Franz was driving his daughter to school, he saw a man riding a bicycle in the pouring rain, one hand on the handlebars, the other holding an enormous umbrella the size of a patio umbrella over his head as he pedaled through the deluge. Franz shakes his head. “It seems like I … 0

Dining with History: Always up for a good potluck, Heath residents also serve up tasty stories

Friday, July 18, 2014

The Heath Historical Society has been going strong since 1900. It owns and maintains four historical sites in town. Its membership roll numbers more than 200. Its all-volunteer staff maintains three buildings with archives that include letters, diaries and numerous artifacts. Early in 2013, board members of the society came up with a … 0

‘Regent’s Punch’

Friday, July 18, 2014

Occasionally, the organizers of Dining with History like to feature food of past days. Kara Leistyna prepared this punch for one evening; she adapted it from “Saveur.” Ingredients: 1 cup sugar 1 cup cubed pineapple 2 lemons 2 oranges 2 green tea bags 1 cup brandy 1/4 cup dark rum 2 bottles Brut … 0

Savoring the Seasons: Cooking as art with found objects

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

By MARY MCCLINTOCK When I think about Hope & Olive chef Maggie Zaccara’s work just before the Free Harvest Supper, I think about “art with found objects.” Before the supper, Maggie has some idea of what she’s going to create to feed 1,000 people, but she doesn’t know … 0

Trail Mix: nature activities in our area

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Northfield hike Sunday NORTHFIELD —Northfield Area Hikes will host a moderately paced hike in the woods Sunday. (Editor’s note: The printed version of Trail Mix that ran Thursday, July 17, had the incorrect day.) Hikers will meet behind the Northfield Town Hall at 1 p.m. for car-pooling to … 0

Speaking of Nature: The American robin

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Whether it’s dawn, or dusk, there is always one prominent song in the world of birds; that of the American robin (Turdus migratorius). Bright and clear, this song carries quite some distance and brings with it the positive, … 0

Voice of Audubon: Western Massachusetts bird sightings

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Here are some of this week’s bird sightings from the Voice of Audubon for western Massachusetts. An Acadian flycatcher was found inside Gate 22 of the Quabbin Reservoir. Two adult and three young orchard orioles were reported in Northampton. A peregrine falcon was seen near their nesting site … 0

Between the Rows: Mary Lyon Church Garden Tour

Friday, July 11, 2014

Garden tour season continues! The Mary Lyon Church garden tour is scheduled for Saturday, July 19, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and includes seven gardens in Buckland and two gardens in West Hawley. I had the good fortune to visit Shirley Scott and Joe Giard’s garden ahead … 0

‘Thunder on the Mountain’: Monadnock Speedway is like Daytona, but smaller

Friday, July 11, 2014

Moonshiners hauling whiskey during the Roaring Twenties laid claim to beginning the age of motor racing. “They put more time, energy, thought and love into their cars than any racer ever will,” said Junior Johnson, a legendary stock … 0

Speaking of Nature: Green Herons

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The phone call came on the afternoon of July 3. It was not at all unusual for the phone to ring because of the long list of telemarketers that somehow seem to get my number. No, what made … 0

Voice of Audubon: bird sightings in our area

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Here are this week’s bird sightings from the Western Voice of Audubon. A red crossbill was heard calling as it flew over the southern end of the Quabbin Reservoir. A black vulture was seen in Belchertown. Black-billed cuckoos were heard calling in Pittsfield and Southwick Two soras and … 0

Between the Rows: Dioecious plants

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Editor’s note: Pat Leuchtman also writes online. You can find her at www.commonweeder.com. The Annual Rose Viewing was a success, but it was the hardy kiwi vine on our shed that also got a lot of attention. Of … 0

Savoring the Seasons: Cherries and chatting

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

By MARY MCCLINTOCK It’s the time of year when I get treats at the Greenfield Farmers Market to share with friends at the weekly peace vigil on the Common next to the market. With snap peas, strawberries, or cherry tomatoes, we stand on the Common and munch. Last … 0