Merry Month of May

The Merry Month of May is a great time to visit the Berkshires.  First of all, guests of Brook Farm Inn, your Lenox, MA bed and breakfast, who arrive in May will receive a complimentary bottle of Prosecco or non-alcoholic sparkling beverage. It’s our Sparkling Spring Special.

Winter Special

Sparkling Spring Special

Here’s your guideline to what’s happening in the Berkshires in May.

May 3 – Meet Rockwell’s Models

At the Norman Rockwell Museum, people who posed for the famous illustrator will tell about their experiences.

 

May 10 and 17 – Music at the Dream Away Lodge

This restaurant has been a Berkshires legend for over 90 years.Featuring great food, a funky atmosphere and live music, it’s located in Becket. On May 10, enjoy the music of Bernice Lewis.  On May 17th, Podunk Throwbacks will perform.

 

May 2, 3, 4 – TheatreFest@Saint James Place

Enjoy 8 works by 7 local playwrights. Be among the first to see original plays, works in progress and emerging artists.  This is a new way to experience the exciting Berkshires cultural scene. It’s in Great Barrington, MA.

May 5 – Close Encounters With Music

The Luncheon Musicale  features phenom cellist Hayden Idson. Celebrate in the Salon in the Gilded Age elegance of the Lenox Club, a venerable Berkshire presence since 1864!. Savor a superb lunch and support Close Encounters With Music. La vie est belle!!!

 

May 22 – June 8 – Barrington Stage Co.

“Hold These Truths ” is about unsung American hero, Gordon Hirabayashi.  He refused to go to a relocation cam with other Japanese Americans during WW II.  Journeying from college to courtroom to the Presidential Medal of Freedom, he’s the subject of this award winning play.

 

May 23 – July 14 – Shakespeare & Co.

Starting in the Merry Month of May, our local Lenox theater offers “The Waverly Gallery.” It was a Pulitzer Prize finalist, and tells of a NYC family matriarch. She was a lawyer and ran a gallery for decades, but now faces memory and hearing loss. It’s a touching play about how family roles are re-fashioned over time.

 

May 23 – June 2 – Mac-Haydn Theatre

This is a  theater in the round, known for producing wonderful musicals. Starting Memorial Day Weekend, you  can enjoy the classic “Camelot.” It’s the legendary show about King Arthur, Guinevere and Sir Lancelot.

 

May 24 – June 15 – Berkshire Theatre Group

At BTG’s Unicorn Theatre,  see Edward Albee’s “The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?” This play won many awards and has been labeled “provocative,” “daring,” and “controversial.”

 

So you mustn’t lose the opportunity to visit the Berkshires in May, or any time, to experience the great cultural offerings.  Hope to see you soon!

Merry Month of May

 

 

 

 

Your Guide to the Best West Stockbridge, MA Attractions

Just 15 minutes away from Lenox, MA and Brook Farm Inn lies the town of West Stockbridge, MA. In this “Western Gateway to the Berkshires,” you will discover cultural and historic attractions along with some great dining and shopping. There are many different activities to participate in during your visit to West Stockbridge, MA. Most involve discovering the unique art and cultures of the Berkshires. Here are just a few of our favorites that will guarantee a great time during your vacation stay!

Find out more about all of the great hubs near Brook Farm Inn when you download our free Vacation Guide. It’s full of the best recommendations for nearby towns to visit and explore, such as West Stockbridge, MA!

Top Things to Do in West Stockbridge, MA

Olivia’s Overlook

There are some great hiking destinations among the majestic Berkshires. Olivia’s Overlook is one of them. You will find an absolutely incredible view at this scenic overlook, especially as the fall colors seep into the vast array of foliage. You can hike or bike the short loop to this overlook. Be sure to bring your camera for a stunning photograph!

Inner Vision Studio

Discover a taste of the local arts scene at Inner Vision Studio in West Stockbridge, MA. Watercolor painter and photographer Karen J. Andrews displays some of her enthralling works at this quaint studio. Combining art techniques in unusual ways, Andrews expresses a certain magic of the visual world through capturing movement. Enjoy subject matter such as nature, the human form, and everyday places and things.

Charles H. Baldwin & Sons

Among the attractions of West Stockbridge, MA, you will discover Charles H. Baldwin & Sons. This historic vanilla bean extraction company was founded in 1888 and became a tried and true family company. Baldwin’s son inherited the company and developed a delicious syrup in the 1920s before other flavors were created. The main floor of the store currently sells all Baldwin products, from the Proper Bloody Mary Mix to the old-fashioned Bay Rum Aftershave. You will also find retro candies, greeting cards, and other country store items here.

Hoffman Pottery

Art abounds in West Stockbridge, MA. Proving that sentiment correct is Hoffman Pottery, a local collection of contemporary ceramics by Elaine Hoffman. She has many magical and whimsical creations among her wide range of pottery. These include frog sculptures for the garden, cosmic-inspired vases and mugs, bright bowls and plates, and quirky teapots.

Pythagoras Theatre Works

Stop in for a riveting production at Pythagoras Theatre Works in West Stockbridge, MA. This small, professional theatre company creates vibrant performances in a historical venue. Its mission is to celebrate the cultural and literary history of the Berkshires through its productions. Past seasons have included adaptations from some of Edith Wharton’s short stories.

Rouge Restaurant & Bistro

For a delectable dinner in West Stockbridge, MA, you can’t go wrong with Rouge Restaurant & Bistro. Open for dinner Wednesday through Sunday, Rouge features some locally crafted fare that will entice your palate. Appetizers include a Scottish smoked salmon plate, grilled breads, and a tapas trio. Mouthwatering entrees then include a parmesan encrusted rack of lamb, braised free range duck, and oven roasted lemon chicken.

Shaker Dam Coffeehouse

Art and coffee combine at the Shaker Dam Coffeehouse, which doubles as the Stanmeyer Gallery. Here, you will discover the photographic work of National Geographic contributor John Stanmeyer. His hand-printed photographs are on display and for purchase, making a great authentic souvenir to remember your trip. In addition to some great pictures, you will also discover a delicious cup of coffee or tea here!

Stay at Brook Farm Inn

While exploring the cultural hub of West Stockbridge, MA, make Brook Farm Inn your homebase. Our charming bed and breakfast retreat in Lenox, MA, features luxurious yet quaint accommodations, spa services, and a delicious breakfast each morning of your stay. Book your retreat to the Berkshires today for a peaceful getaway!

What You’ll See at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge

Just over 10 minutes away from Lenox, MA, in Stockbridge, there lies a museum in commemoration of one of the greatest American painters of our time. The Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge features the famous illustrator’s original paintings, his studio, and transitioning American Illustration exhibits. When you visit the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, you will get an insight into both the life and work of this master. History and art coalesce into a variety of collections and exhibitions. You will learn from and appreciate them simultaneously. Here are just a few things you should know and a few things that you will see during your visit to the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge.

Visiting the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge

If you plan on visiting the Norman Rockwell Museum during your stay at Brook Farm Inn, here are some things you should know. The museum is open from May until October from 10am to 5pm daily. It is also open until 7pm on Thursdays in July and August. From November until April, the museum is open from 10am to 4pm during weekdays and from 10am to 5pm on weekends and holidays. However, the museum is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. The Norman Rockwell Museum admission fee is $18 for adults, $17 for seniors, $16 for veterans, $10 for students with a college ID, $6 for children 6-18, and free for children 5 and under.

Group Tours

Once you’ve arrived at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge and paid admission, you can opt to participate in a group tour. The museum welcomes groups of 15 or more at a discounted admission rate. Guided group tours can then be arranged at an added cost. These prices depend on the size of the tour group you are with and range from an audio and digital guide for just $5 per person to curator-led tours featuring behind-the-scene knowledge for $20 a person in groups of over 10 people.

You can also embark upon the Highlights of the Collection Tour, a one-hour adventure led by a museum guide that will investigate key pieces and inspire interactive discussion. The Side Walk & Talk Tour is a seasonal option that includes the Norman Rockwell Museum grounds , including the Peter Rockwell sculpture walk and the exterior of the Linwood Mansion. The Plein Air Art Experience will allow guests to create their own artwork on the 36-acre site, while you can also Meet Rockwell’s Models on the first Fridays of most months. During this tour, you will see what it was like to pose for America’s most beloved illustrator.

Exhibits

The Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge holds the largest and most significant collection of Norman Rockwell’s original artwork. There are enduring favorites from the Saturday Evening Post and the enthralling, powerful Four Freedoms paintings. In addition to Rockwell’s art, there are also special exhibits of works by past and present American illustrators that are constantly changing. Inside the museum, you will discover 10 large galleries, a gift shop, and a gorgeous 36-acre property that also features Rockwell’s artwork, along with sculptures by his son, Peter. Though the Norman Rockwell paintings are the main feature, there is also a library with archives and image resources available.

After Touring the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge

After your visit to the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, head back to Brook Farm Inn for a relaxing vacation getaway in the Berkshires. Enjoy our stress-relieving massage services, charming guest rooms, and gourmet breakfasts. For more local attractions, you can download our vacation guide, which offers inside information about the area.

Why You Need to Check Out the Frelinghuysen Morris House

The Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio features a collection of American and European Cubist Art on a 46-acre estate in Lenox, MA. It is a wonderful artistic destination during your stay at local bed and breakfast, Brook Farm Inn. Offering frescoes, sculpture, paintings, and more, the Frelinghuysen Morris House is a cultural gem in the Berkshires. Explore a unique style of art while admiring the historic grounds. Here are just a few reasons that you should check out the Frelinghuysen Morris House during your vacation!

Frelinghuysen Morris House History

The history of the Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio lies with George L.K. Morris and Suzy Frelinghuysen. These two abstract artists since the late 1930s were an edgy couple in both the national and international art scene. They were collectors and intellectuals, creating a Berkshire home to reflect their personal aesthetic. The Frelinghuysen Morris House is a piece of their world, preserved as it was when they created it. Morris was influenced by the white stucco of Paris, while Frelinghuysen was influenced by the indigenous buildings of Arizona and New Mexico. Together, with both inspirations and a Modern take, they created an estate that served as home and studio. The Frelinghuysen Morris House used marble and leather flooring, and Morris created the frescoes in the living room while Frelinghuysen constructed her designs in the dining room. Modern furniture completed the aesthetic with a balance of art, architecture, and design.

Visiting the Frelinghuysen Morris House

The Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio opened for visitation in 1998, a decade after Frelinghuysen’s death. The original furnishings and artwork don the space, along with some works of colleagues and contemporaries. These include Picasso, Braque, Leger, and Gris. Early 20th-century art survives and thrives in this unique estate. Visitors can schedule a tour throughout the year. Admission is $15 for adults, $14 for seniors, and $7.50 for grounds only or students with a valid ID. The surrounding 10-minute woodland walk to the house and studio is quite lovely and a piece of art in itself. The house and studio is open at different times throughout the year, which you can discover on the website.

The Berkshires and Brook Farm Inn

After you are finished browsing the artwork and touring the grounds at the Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio, continue your Lenox explorations. There is so much to do in the Berkshires, such as go apple picking, zip lining, or hiking! There are a variety of exciting and fun outdoor activities that will keep your adventurous heart happy. There are also restaurants and shops to enjoy as well. Indulge in that delicious vacation dinner and find the perfect souvenir to bring back home to remember your trip. Then, once your day of fun is over, settle in at Brook Farm Inn for a great night’s sleep. Wake up to a delicious breakfast, spa amenities, and more! Download our free vacation guide for additional ideas on what to do in the area.

 

Chesterwood in Stockbridge is a Sight You Need to See


If you’re looking for an attraction in the Berkshires, consider a visit to Chesterwood in Stockbridge, the former home of American sculptor Daniel Chester French. Most famed for the Lincoln Memorial, French split his time between New York and this beautiful summer estate in Massachusetts. Art, culture, and nature coalesce to create the modern museum, which is available for not only tours but also weddings and other events.

History of Chesterwood in Stockbridge

Chesterwood in Stockbridge was once the summer mansion and studio of sculptor Daniel Chester French (1850-1931). Back in 1896, the estate was purchased by French, who at the time was already renowned for his bronze Minute Man statue at the Old North Bridge in Concord, Massachusetts. A studio nearby the farmhouse was created on the property by French’s friend Henry Bacon, and here, the sculptor would create his artwork during his working career.

French & Chesterwood

French is most well-known for his giant sculpture of Abraham Lincoln that sits at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. The carving was designed at Chesterwood in Stockbridge and then carved in DC. After French’s death, Chesterwood mansion was inherited by daughter Margaret French Cresson, who formed the Daniel Chester French Foundation to help manage most of the property until it was donated. Most of the original 150-acre estate is now owned by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, who utilizes the property as a museum and sculpture garden. Chesterwood in Stockbridge is now a National and Massachusetts Historic Landmark.

Make a Visit

Chesterwood opens on Memorial Day Weekend 2016 to visitors, parallel to when French would travel from his permanent home and studio in New York to his summer estate for the warm months. The residence, gardens, exhibit gallery, museum shop, picnic area, and walking trails are all available at this time for your perusing. Group tours are available through the rehabilitated studio, nine-bedroom estate, and surrounding woodlands. You can bring a picnic, order lunch, or request a private wine and cheese party on the studio’s pizza overlooking Monument Mountain.

Exhibits

The permanent exhibit at Chesterwood in Stockbridge displays French’s most renowned works, including the Minute Man, Lincoln Memorial, The Continents, and Samuel F. Dupont Memorial. This exhibit features his creative process, style, and the social context of his work. Other collections vary throughout the year.

Weddings

You can plan your wedding at Chesterwood in Stockbridge! A memorable venue with gorgeous Berkshires scenery as your backdrop will convey an aura of elegance and the peacefulness that comes with mountain views. The Italianate garden contrasts well with the rural landscape to provide an atmosphere fitting for a ceremony, reception, or dinner party from intimate gatherings to 500 guests.

Specials

There is a special price available for the American Icons ticket program, which includes tours of Chesterwood in Stockbridge, the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, the Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield, and The Mount in Lenox. With this package, you can receive $3 each additional location after purchasing your first full-price ticket.

Stay at Brook Farm

Stay close to The Mount, a member of the American Icons specials package, and book at Brook Farm. For more history to explore and things to do in Lenox and around Massachusetts, download our free vacation guide!