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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Adams Allocates Additional Funds To Progress Glen Outdoor Center Solar
Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
ADAMS, Mass. — The selectmen unanimously voted to transfer $25,000 from the capital reserve fund to pay for a geotechnical survey needed to install solar panels on the Greylock Glens Outdoor Center campus.
Town Administrator Jay Green told the selectmen Wednesday, Feb. 21, that although state funding has covered much of the actual construction of the Outdoor Center, there are still some ancillary costs the town has to sort out, including the installation of solar panels to make the building a net-zero-energy building.
"Once the funding came through the state it was enough to put up four walls and a roof, but there are some other components of the building including the solar," Green said. "It had never been fully fleshed out and it was hard to predict when we would strike gold and get the funding."
In 2022, the state committed $6.5 million to fund the construction of the Greylock Glen Outdoor Center. Since then, the town has gathered additional funding for the $8.3 million project The outdoor center is expected to open later this year, and the camping facility within the next couple of years. The town is developing about 50 acres of the 1,000-acre glen as a recreational and educational hub.
Green said, working with the architects, it was agreed that it would be best to place solar panels on the to-be-built carports, and the town partnered with the company Soltec to explore implementation.
Greylock Glen Outdoor Center Director Michael Wynn said normally Soltec would completely fund the design, implementation, and operation of the solar carports. Ultimately, the town would purchase the solar electricity from Soltec once everything was up and running.
However, Soltec can only expend money after an agreement between the company and the town is passed by a town meeting, which would normally take place in the summer.
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