The Mary Flynn Trail in Stockbridge will play host to one of over 60 Housatonic Heritage walks set to take place in Berkshire and Litchfield counties in September. Photo: Diane Cote

Bits & Bytes: Housatonic Heritage walks; Sheffield Fair; Outstanding in the Field; ‘Cross-Section’ at Eclipse Mill Gallery; adult education classes

This year’s Sheffield Fair will feature animal showmanship and fitting competitions, barrel racing, a vintage Studebaker car show, local vendors and food, a zip line from the Sheffield Police Department, and more.

Housatonic Heritage to offer four weekends of guided tours

Salisbury, Conn. — The Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area has announced that its 17th annual Housatonic Heritage Walks will take place on Saturdays and Sundays beginning Saturday, Sept. 8, through Sunday, Sept. 30. More than 60 guided, interpretive tours will be offered throughout Berkshire County, Massachusetts, as well as Litchfield County in Connecticut.

The public is invited and encouraged to participate in the informative, family-oriented walks, which are offered in partnership with the region’s historic, cultural and nature organizations. Historians, naturalists and environmentalists will lead participants on explorations through historic estate gardens and town districts, behind-the-scenes cultural site tours, nature walks, trail hikes, and tours of many of the industrial-site ruins that were once huge, thriving local industries. Also included are Native-American history walks, canoe-paddling trips on the Housatonic River and Buckley Dunton Lake, and bike rides on scenic country roads along the river and on the Massachusetts sections of the Western New England Greenway.

For more information and a complete list of walks, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Housatonic Heritage at


*     *     *

The Southern Berkshire Whistlepunks woodsman team trains a new generation at the 2017 Sheffield Fair. Photo courtesy Sheffield Fair

Sheffield Association to present 18th annual Sheffield Fair

Sheffield — The Sheffield Association will present the 18th annual Sheffield Fair Saturday, Sept. 8, from noon to 5 p.m. at the Sheffield Town Park off Miller Avenue.

This year’s fair will feature animal showmanship and fitting competitions, barrel racing, animals to pet, children’s activities, constant entertainment and music, Bowey the Clown, a vintage Studebaker car show, hay wagon rides, artists, crafters, nonprofit organizations, local vendors and food, a zip line from the Sheffield Police Department, fire trucks, and more.

Admission, activities and parking are all free. The fair is fully accessible. Shuttle rides will be available to provide people of all abilities assistance in getting from their parking spots to the pavilion. For more information, contact Jayne Smith at (413) 229-2572 or


*     *     *

The fields of Woven Roots Farm in Tyringham. Photo courtesy Woven Roots Farm

Outstanding in the Field to visit Woven Roots Farm

Tyringham — On Sunday, Sept. 9, at 3 p.m. after a one-year hiatus, the Outstanding in the Field bus will arrive in the Berkshires at the 10-acre, no-till, bio-intensive Woven Roots Farm. Using strict regenerative agricultural practices to supply its seasonal CSA membership and local wholesale markets within 15 miles, Woven Roots is one of the few farms in western Massachusetts working the soil completely by hand, and has been doing so for almost 15 years.

Brian Alberg. Photo courtesy Main Street Hospitality Group

The event will begin with hors d’oeuvres and a farm tour of Pete and Jen Salinetti’s vegetable and flower fields and their laying hens before guests are invited to sit at the communal dinner table to enjoy an artfully crafted multicourse meal complete with wine pairings. During the meal, the local producers who provided the ingredients for the menu will talk about their respective crafts and guests will be encouraged to engage with them and ask questions. Executive chef Brian Alberg and his crew from Main Street Catering and the Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge will be orchestrating the field kitchen and long table, presenting a five-course meal to 175 guests, one of the biggest dinners of OITF’s season.

“From the moment Pete and I started working this land, we knew that this was a place that was meant to be shared,” said Jen Salinetti. “We take pride in our growing practices that work in relationship with the soil and allow us to provide nutrient-dense and beautiful produce to our community.”

Tickets are $255. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar.


*     *     *

Eclipse Mill Gallery to host ‘Cross-Section’ fiber arts exhibit

‘Borromean Rings’ quilt by Beth Davis. Image courtesy Eclipse Mill Galler

North Adams — ‘Cross-Section,’ the inaugural exhibition from the newly formed North Adams Fiber Artists group, will open at the Eclipse Mill Gallery with a reception Friday, Sept. 7, from 5 to 8 p.m. and run through Monday, Oct. 8.

The exhibition presents a diverse survey of NAFA members’ work in fiber. Knitted, crocheted, woven, felted, spun, hand-dyed, quilted, stitched, wrapped, knotted and hooked, the fiber arts embrace many construction techniques and include approaches that date to the earliest stages of civilization. “Cross-Section” includes work from Eva Camacho-Sanchez, Kathline Carr, Sharon Costello, Beth Davis, Arthur De Bow, Pat Frik, Randee Laikind, Kichung Lizee, Fern Leslie, Deborah MacDonald, Jeanne Marklin, Linda O’Brien, Brenda Osborn, Eve Pearce, Ann C. Scott, Lee Sproull and Betty Vera. The exhibition has been designed by Arthur De Bow, curator at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts’ Gallery 51.

The exhibition and reception are free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Elcipse Mill Gallery at


*     *     *

William Stickney Pittsfield Adult Learning Center to hold registration for classes

Pittsfield — All new and returning students who wish to prepare for the GED or HiSET exams, earn an Adult Diploma, or are interested in learning or improving English as a Second Language at the William Stickney Pittsfield Adult Learning Center, 441 North St., must register, in person, on one of four days: Thursday, Sept. 6, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. or 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.; Friday, Sept. 7, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Monday, Sept. 10, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; or Tuesday, Sept. 11, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. After those dates, registration will only be done by appointment.

The William Stickney Pittsfield Adult Learning Center has been offering free adult basic education and ESL classes to individuals ages 16 and older since 1976. The center also provides individualized attention, education and career advising, workplace readiness skills, and flexible hours through distance learning. For more information, call (413) 499-9530.