Smithsonian Coming to Sheffield

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SHEFFIELD, Mass. The Smithsonian's Museum on Main Street, in cooperation with Mass Humanities, is coming to the Bushnell-Sage Library.
 
Through a partnership with the world's largest museum complex, Mass Humanities announced that Bushnell-Sage Library will join five other local Massachusetts organizations to host "Crossroads: Changes in Rural America," a traveling exhibit produced by the Smithsonian Institution's Museum on Main Street program. 
 
"The town of Sheffield, including our host site of Bushnell-Sage Library and partners including the Sheffield Historical Society, the Sheffield Senior Center, Dewey Memorial Hall, Housatonic Heritage, and many other organizations, are thrilled to welcome the Museum on Main Street (MoMs) Smithsonian tour Crossroads: Change in Rural America," said Deena Caswell, Library Director at the Bushnell-Sage Library. "We hope that Berkshire County, Western Massachusetts, and the rest of the state will join us as we showcase the rich history of Sheffield and explore the resiliency of this rural farm community."
 
"Crossroads" explores how rural American communities changed in the 20th century.
 
The vast majority of the United States landscape remains rural with only 3.5 percent of the landmass considered urban. Since 1900, the percentage of Americans living in rural areas dropped from 60 percent to 17 percent. The exhibition offers small towns a chance to look at their own paths to highlight the changes that affected their fortunes over the past century.
 
"It's an honor to partner with the Smithsonian and our friends at Bushnell-Sage Library," said Brian Boyles, Executive Director of Mass Humanities. "Rural Massachusetts is a complex, changing landscape, and residents in our small towns deserve to be heard as we build a more equitable commonwealth." 
 
Bushnell-Sage Library will receive training from the staff of the Smithsonian along with a $10,000 grant from Mass Humanities to develop public events during the exhibit, which will be on display for six weeks in each community. Organizations located in towns with populations of 12,000 or less were eligible to apply.  Mass Humanities receives major support from Mass Cultural Council (MCC), the state agency for arts and the humanities. 
 
"Mass Cultural Council celebrates the power of culture in every Commonwealth community -- whether big or small, east or west, rural, suburban, or urban," said Michael J. Bobbitt, Executive Director, Mass Cultural Council.  "We are pleased to partner with Mass Humanities to support the Smithsonian's Museum on Main Street program and shine a spotlight on these rural stories that make Massachusetts so special." 
 
For further information, contact Jen Atwood at jatwood@masshumanities.org.
 
These institutions will host the exhibit during the tour:
  • Essex Historical Society and Shipbuilding Museum, Essex: 9/10/2022 - 10/22/2022
  • The Hull Lifesaving Museum, Hull: 10/30/2022 - 12/10/2022
  • Rutland Free Public Library, Rutland: 12/18/2022 - 1/28/2023
  • Great Falls Discovery Center, Turners Falls: 2/5/2023 - 3/18/2023
  • Bushnell-Sage Library, Sheffield: 3/26/2023 - 5/6/2023
  • Athol Public Library, Athol: 5/14/2023 - 6/24/2023
 
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Berkshire Art Association Extends Application Deadline for Festival

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Art Association is seeking donations of original artwork for our annual 10x10 RAP (Real Art Party) show and fundraiser raffle.
 
In collaboration with the Berkshire Museum and the city of Pittsfield's 10x10 Festival in February, the BAA welcomes submissions from artists from the Berkshires and beyond. All artwork will be included in a raffle to benefit art students of Berkshire County. The raffle and Real Art Party (RAP) will be a free, live and in-person event hosted by the Berkshire Museum on ​Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. 
 
A $25 ticket purchase guarantees a 10x10 work of art. 
 
All visitors to Berkshire Museum 18 years and older, must show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination accompanied by photo ID. Acceptable forms of proof include a photo or hard copy of an official immunization record of a vaccine administered from within or outside the U.S. Digital forms of state or federally issued proof of vaccination such as the NY Excelsior Pass are also acceptable. Masks are required for everyone over two years of age while indoors.
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