Clark Art Participates in Williamstown's Holiday Walk Weekend

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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Clark Art Institute joins in the community-wide celebration of the holidays during Williamstown's 40th Annual Holiday Walk weekend, held the first weekend in December. 
 
The Clark kicks off the festivities on Dec. 1 with a live concert by Johnny Irion and U.S. Elevator. On Dec. 2, the Clark hosts art-making activities and horse-drawn carriage rides. The Institute's popular First Sundays Free program continues on Sunday, Dec. 3. Offering free admission to the galleries and special exhibitions from 10 am–5 pm, the day also features a series of light-themed special activities from 1–4 pm, and a special production by Williamstown Theatre Festival (WTF) at 3 pm.
 
FRIDAY, Dec. 1 ACTIVITIES
Williamstown's Holiday Walk Weekend kicks off with a lively performance by troubadour rocker and Berkshire County treasure Johnny Irion and U.S. Elevator. The concert takes place on Friday, Dec. 1 at 6 pm in the Clark's auditorium, located in the Manton Research Center.
 
Tickets $10 ($8 members, $7 students, $5 children 15 and under). Advance registration required; capacity is limited. For more information and to register, visit clarkart.edu/events.
 
SATURDAY, Dec. 2 ACTIVITIES
Enjoy a full day of free holiday festivities all along Williamstown's Spring Street. Engage in art-making activities and enjoy horse-drawn carriage rides on Spring Street, both sponsored by the Clark.
 
For details on Williamstown's Holiday Walk weekend, visit DestinationWilliamstown.org.
 
SUNDAY, Dec. 3 ACTIVITIES
It's First Sunday Free at the Clark, welcoming everyone with free admission and all sorts of things to do. Prepare to ring in the new year by making your own disco ball or designing a lantern decorated with images from the Clark's collection. The fun continues as light and a bit of theater are combined to help create shadow puppets with MusicArtPuppetSound (MAPS), a Berkshire/New York-based arts nonprofit. MAPS leads children in an exploration of shadow play, inventing and performing with both larger-than-life and teeny-tiny shadow puppets. A pop-up installation of Clark images focused on sunlight and shadows is on view in the Manton Study Center for Works on Paper from 11 am–1 pm.
 
The Clark's newest exhibition, 50 Years and Forward: British Prints and Drawings Acquisitions, is on view in the Manton Research Center, the home of the Clark's noted works on paper collection. This exhibition places a special focus on British prints, drawings, and watercolors in the collection, with a rich selection of works by artists including Thomas Rowlandson, J.M.W Turner, John Constable, Evelyn de Morgan, and Anna Alma-Tadema. Elizabeth Atterbury: Oracle Bones, a special installation in public areas at the Clark, is also on view.
 
At 3 pm, the Clark hosts a free performance presented by Williamstown Theatre Festival, SAMMIE AND DAN: Singing and Holiday Cheer with Samantha Williams and Dan Rudin. The show brings a Festival favorite back to Williamstown to celebrate the season. Samantha Williams (Caroline, Or Change and Dear Evan Hansen) dazzled as a guest star in WTF's summer 2023 cabaret and now she returns to Williamstown with her best pal, Dan Rudin (pianist at MJ and Caroline, Or Change), and a whole act featuring favorite holiday tunes. This next generation Broadway star is sure to brighten up your Sunday afternoon with classic songs and warm spirits—more delicious and less filling than eggnog.
 
Free. Space is limited and advance reservations are strongly encouraged. Secure tickets for the concert through the Williamstown Theatre Festival Box Office at wtfestival.org.
 
For more information on First Sunday Free, visit clarkart.edu/events. Family programs are supported by Allen & Company.
 

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Williamstown Decides to Clear Out Water Street Lot

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires Staff
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — A long-time de facto parking lot on Water Street will be closed to vehicles as of March 1, the town has announced.
 
The 1.27-acre dirt lot that was most recently the site of the town garage has been used to park cars for decades. But the town has never formally considered it a parking lot, and it is not paved, lined or regulated in any way.
 
The town manager Thursday said that concerns about liability at the site led to a decision to place barriers around the lot to block cars this winter and for the foreseeable future.
 
"Over the fall, we kept an eye on it, and what we were seeing was upward of 160 or 170 cars on any given day," Bob Menicocci said. "It got to the point where, because of its unregulated nature, the Police Department was getting calls for service saying, ‘I'm blocked in. Can you tow this car?' that kind of thing.
 
"It was becoming an untenable situation."
 
The town's observation of the lot found a high percentage of the cars belonged to people connected to Williams College, mainly students who used it for overnight parking. That conclusion is borne out by the way the lot tends to be a lot emptier during college breaks.
 
In the fall, the school's student newspaper ran an article describing the lot as, "a perfectly legal spot to stash a car, and thus, [where] it seems that College students have lucked into a free, convenient parking lot."
 
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