New Salem Old Home Day set for Saturday

  • June Baril, then 4, front, and Vincent Spooner, 4, play with wind chimes made by Spoon River Jewelry during the New Salem Old Home Day celebration in 2018. Staff File Photo/Dan Little

  • Then 7-year-old Ethan Day of South Hadley celebrates victory following a pie eating contest at New Salem’s Old Home Day in 2017. At left sits fellow competitor Solomon Burke, 8, of New Salem. Staff File Photo/Shelby Ashline

  • Then 19-year-old Henry Frost (at right) of New Salem and 18-year-old Levi Baruch of Orange participate in the cross-cut saw contest as part of New Salem’s Old Home Day in 2017. Staff File Photo/Shelby Ashline

  • Vendors line the common during the New Salem Old Home Day celebration in 2018. Staff File Photo/Dan Little

  • The Tequila Amigos perform during the New Salem Old Home Day celebration in 2018. Staff File Photo/Dan Little

  • The Tequila Amigos perform during New Salem’s Old Home Day in 2017. Staff File Photo/Shelby Ashline

Staff Writer
Published: 7/18/2019 6:25:21 PM
Modified: 7/18/2019 6:25:11 PM

NEW SALEM — Everything from pony rides to a book sale, from a crafts market to a “parade of flags,” will be at the annual community event known as “Old Home Day.”

This year’s Old Home Day is Saturday on the Town Common from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 100 volunteers are facilitating the event, which will include musical performances, activities, games and meals.

This year’s event was originally to be a celebration of the 1794 Meetinghouse’s 25 years of musical performances. The 1794 Meetinghouse is a nonprofit founded in 1987 as a performance art center. However, a performance by Mad Agnes at the meetinghouse on Saturday, as well as a subsequent show by Peter Blanchette on Sunday, have been canceled due to projected hot weather and lack of air conditioning.

The Mad Agnes concert was rescheduled to Saturday, Sept. 28, and Peter Blanchette’s show was moved to Sunday, Sept. 22.

Other events will still take place at the meetinghouse, however, and the Old Home Day Committee released a statement on the “iconic” building’s importance.

“This year’s festival will highlight the history of the transformation of the town’s iconic 220-year-old meetinghouse into a vibrant rural performance center,” the statement reads. “A determined group of volunteers started the meetinghouse restoration in 1987, and began to offer a wide range of performances in 1994.”

The New Salem Old Home Day is made possible by grants from the New Salem Cultural Council and the Massachusetts Cultural Council, as well as support from Hannaford’s and Market Basket grocery stores, Herrick’s Tavern and the Mahar Key Club.

Schedule

■7 a.m. to 10 a.m. — Firemen’s breakfast at the Fire Station.

■9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. — Historic “Quabbin Drive/Walk to Millington.” Meet behind the old Town Hall.

■10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. — Police K-9 demonstration behind the old Town Hall.

■10 a.m. to 11 a.m. — Info session on grants/scholarships at the old academy building.

■10 a.m. to 3 p.m. — Local product/arts/crafts market and book sale on the Town Common; Childrens’ tie-dye and face painting.

■10 a.m. to noon — Free pony rides.

■10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. — Circa-1840 organ performance and talk at the Congregational Church.

■10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. — Trike races.

■11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. — Inside/Out dance performance and Jumptown skydivers dropping in behind old Town Hall.

■11 a.m. to 1 p.m. — Old New Salem Academy tours.

■11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. — Lunch at the Fire Station.

■Noon — Parade of flags.

■12:30 p.m. — Pie eating contest.

■12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. — Reprobate Blues Band performance.

■12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. — Cross-cut saw contest.

■1 p.m. to 2 p.m. — Cake Walk.

■1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. — New Salem Academy reunion at the 1794 Meetinghouse.

■1:45 p.m. — Musical chairs.

■2 p.m. to 3 p.m. — Forest tree walk with Bruce Spencer. Meet by the library.

■2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. — Tequila Amigos performance.

Reach David McLellan at dmclellan@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 268.


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