ADAMS, Mass. — The Greylock Ramble turns 50 this Columbus Day weekend with Ramblefest returning Sunday and the hike up Mount Greylock on Monday.
Back in 1965, a group of residents covertly named Operation Wonderful Town, chaired by Adams resident, businessman and champion Thunderbolt skier Bill Linscott, formed with the charge of organizing an annual hike to the summit of Mount Greylock.
And 50 years later, ProAdams has taken over where Operation Wonderful Town left off and hundreds still make the trek every Columbus Day.
"These events are important to Adams," ProAdams member Ray Gargan said. "Not only do they provide unique activities for the residents of North Berkshire, but they also attract visitors to Adams from far afield."
Gargan said little has changed over the years and hikers will journey three miles up the Cheshire Harbor Trail, with a total vertical gain of 2,100 feet from which hikers can view the foliage from the vantage point of the summit.
Gargan said the magical theme will continue this year, since the summit of Mount Greylock is the home of the fictional Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry — the North American school in J.K. Rowling's popular "Harry Potter" book and movie series.
"Fans of the Wizarding World of J.K. Rowling are invited to make the hike to Ilvermorny in costume," he said. "We will have a table at the top where they can sign the Ilvermorny Guest Registry for a chance to win prizes from Pottermore.com."
The ramble starts at 8 a.m. and runs until 4 p.m.
Gargan said events like the Greylock Ramble put Adams on the map.
"I spoke with some Ramblers from the United Kingdom at the summit last year and these events have helped to put Adams on the tourism map," he said. "We promote and market the events throughout New England and New York. It is important to ProAdams to show Adams as the creative, vibrant and active community that it is."
Ramblefest also returns Sunday starting at 11 a.m. at the visitors center. The festival was established a few years to extend the Ramble weekend and provide activities outside of the hike.
Admission is free for an afternoon of live music, food and various vendors. Music will be provided by Quarter Life Crisis and License to Groove. There will also be activities for kids.
The festival's half-marathon road race on the Ashwillticook Rail Trail and Hoosac Street to Winter Street will be shut down to traffic while the runners race on Sunday. Adams Police Department noted that traffic will be congested and drivers may need to find alternative routes to find parking.
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Woodlands Partnership Towns Gets $260K in State Funding
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The newly established Mohawk Trail Woodland Partnership's grant program has received $260,000 in funding from the state to support forest stewardship, nature-based tourism and climate education.
The funds were announced last week by Gov. Charlie Baker and will build on the shared stewardship agreement signed last November between the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service, the 10 of the participating municipalities and the Franklin Regional Council of Governments.
Each community will receive $20,000 toward projects and programming and the FRCOG is getting $60,000 for a regional tourism assessment.
"Improving the stewardship of our forests makes them more resilient to the impacts of climate change, strengthens local economies by encouraging nature-based tourism, and benefits rural communities," Baker said in the announcement. "These grants are a terrific example of the collaborative spirit we've worked to foster here in the commonwealth, and we are proud to partner with these communities to preserve our forests and natural resources for generations to come."
The newly established Mohawk Trail Woodland Partnership's grant program has received $260,000 in funding from the state to support forest stewardship, nature-based tourism and climate education.
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One of the last hurdles was obtaining both permanent and temporary easements and also the taking of small portions of land from abuttors to accommodate the bike lane and slightly larger sidewalks.
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