Lee’s 19th annual heritage celebration, the Founders’ Day Weekend, is three days of family fun with a parade, live music, food tastings, sidewalk sales, crafts and much, much more.
August 29th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards
August 14th, 2013 by Katie Pate
Summers are meant to be spent near the water, if you ask me. We have a lovely pool at the Inn for swimming and lounging, however it can be fun to experience some fresh water while you are in the Berkshires as well.
Laurel Lake is only five minutes up the road from Applegate Inn Bed & Breakfast, where you can swim from a sandy beach with a lifeguard standing by. There are also changing rooms, restrooms, a boat ramp and fishing is permitted.
This is a great place to spend the afternoon with a nice book and relax in the shade (or the sun, if you are working on a tan!) Pack a picnic, play some cards or lawn games and then head back to the B&B to freshen up for a delightful dinner at one of our recommended restaurants in the area.
Other Swimming Spots in the Berkshires Area
Lulu Brook in Pittsfield State Forest: An easy five minute hike brings you to an eight-foot cascade into a beautiful pool below.
Card Lake in West Stockbirdge: Enjoy the cool, crisp and clear waters of this local lake.
Center Pond at Becket Town Beach in Becket: This small town swim spot offers free lessons every morning of the week.
Lake Mansfield in Great Barrington: Swimmers will find clear waters and a lifeguard-managed sandy beach area. Lifeguard on duty from 11:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. during summer months.
Onota Lake at Burbank Park in Pittsfield: Located on the eastern shore of Onota Lake, Burbank Park is open year-round. The public park is about 150 acres and offers a fishing pier and free public boat launch, picnic groves with grills, a public swimming beach with lifeguards during July and August and a walking path along the lake.
July 17th, 2013 by Katie Pate
The Housatonic River starts from four sources in the Berkshire mountains near the city of Pittsfield. It flows 149 miles southward through Massachusetts and Connecticut before emptying into the Long Island Sound.
Fishing is a major activity along the entire length of the river. Trout, bass, and perch are the most common catches. Enjoy some of the best fly fishing in southwestern Massachusetts. Fly fishing on the river has been compared with many western rivers and boasts some of the finest trophy trout fishing in the eastern US.
One of the most popular spots for fishing the Housatonic River is between the Falls Village Dam and the town of Cornwall Bridge in Litchfield County Connecticut, about an hour north of the Bed and Breakfast. However, there are local waters where excellent trout fishing takes place.
In Berkshire’s waters find large and small mouth bass, northern pike, white and yellow perch and trout of all varieties in abundance. Numerous brooks, rivers, ponds, and lakes are stocked with trout each year. Here are some of our favorite Berkshires fishing spots:
In Lee ~
- Beartown Brook (west branch)
- Hop Brook
- Goose Pond
- Greenwater Brook
- Laurel Lake
- Washington Mountain Brook
In Lenox ~
- Sawmill Brook
- Marsh Brook
- Yokum Brook
- Laurel Lake
In Stockbridge ~
- Marsh Brook
- Stockbridge Bowl
An essential ingredient for any fishing trip is a free pamphlet containing abstracts of the Massachusetts Fish and Wildlife Laws, available at local sporting goods shops. This pamphlet carefully outlines the rules and regulations of Massachusetts fishing and hunting. Also essential is a license, which can be obtained through either city or town clerks or through many local sporting goods stores.
Lodging for your Weekend in the Berkshires
Whether it is our lovely scenery and natural resources that draw you to the Berkshires, or our heady cultural and historical offerings, make Applegate Inn Bed and Breakfast your starting point for exploring the Berkshires.
June 29th, 2013 by Katie Pate
If you have an interest in American history or architecture, make sure to leave a little time during your Berkshires vacation to visit the Lee Library. A beautiful, quiet and historic place, stop in to browse the shelves or enjoy a quiet place to read for a while.
The Lee Library is the only remaining Carnegie library building in the Berkshires. Because of this, it is not only beautiful but also historically significant.
The present building is on the Peter Wilcox homestead. The Wilcox one-story, one-room log house was the location of Lee’s first town meeting held in December 1777.
The remaining original part of the building was constructed in 1907.
The total cost of the building, including the lot and furnishings, was $35,500. Andrew Carnegie donated $12,000, the town appropriated $18,300, and the remainder was donated by citizens. Lee Marble Works quarried and cut the marble used in the construction of the building. The original section of the building is Corinthian in style, with interior woodwork of polished birch.
The library was expanded in 1977. Again, Lee Marble was used in the construction. The new wing tripled the size of the library to to 7,500 square feet. The addition includes the Betty Dennis Children’s Room, stacks, a reading room, and the Gallery.
What is a Carnegie Library?
Scottish-American businessman and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie donated money to build a total of 2,509 libraries between 1883 and 1929, including some belonging to public and university library systems. 1,689 were built in the United States, 660 in Britain and Ireland, 125 in Canada, and others in Australia, New Zealand, Serbia, the Caribbean, Mauritius and Fiji.
Very few towns that requested a grant – and agreed to his terms – were refused. The last grant was made in 1919 and there were 3,500 libraries in the United States; nearly half of them built with construction grants paid by Carnegie.
Lodging for your Berkshires Vacation
Whether you are visiting the Berkshires to take in modern American art at Tanglewood or Jacob’s Pillow, natural beauty or history, the Berkshires has something for everyone. We would love to be your hosts at our Bed and Breakfast in Lee, the gateway to the Berkshires.
June 14th, 2013 by Katie Pate
Would you like to see some of the most beautiful places in the Berkshire communities of Lee and Becket? Join us for a very special tour called “Gardens, Grounds and Properties of Lee.” Taking place on Sunday, June 23rd from noon to 4 p.m. this tour will lead you to six unique Lee and Becket properties. You will be provided with a map which directs you to delightful surprises: music, literature, family farms and even a former brothel. A dairy farm with frozen yogurt will be a refreshing treat and beautiful gardens are certainly on the itinerary.
Tickets are $15 per person or $25 per couple. Get yours at Karen Keenan Gifts on Main Street in Lee or at the Lee Chamber of Commerce booth on Park Place. You can also call 413.243.0852 for more information and to purchase tickets.
Other Special Places to Visit near the B&B
There are so many unique and beautiful attractions in the Berkshires, they are much too numerous for one blog post. However, we will give you a run down of some of the most popular sites in our area:
- Norman Rockwell Museum
- Tanglewood Jazz Festival, summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
- Jacob’ Pillow Dance Studio and Festival
- Clark Institute
- Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art
- Greenock Country Club for golf and tennis (across the street from our Inn)
- Lee Premium Outlet Mall
- the beach at Laurel Lake
- Mahaiwe Theater in Great Barrington
- Colonial Theater in Pittsfield
- Butternut Ski Area
Amenities at the Inn
You don’t have to leave our grounds to have a great day. Well, you will need to get dinner…but other than that, Applegate Inn has park-like grounds with a heated pool, lounge furniture and even hammocks. We provide an excellent environment for rest and relaxation.
May 29th, 2013 by Katie Pate
Looking to take in some culture while visiting the Berkshires? We have a few suggestions for fun and interesting art galleries to visit in the small town of Lee, where our bed and breakfast is located.
The Good Purpose Art Gallery, 40 Main Street: The Good Purpose Art Gallery features the work of professional artists who are in the College Internship Program, a comprehensive post-secondary program for young adults with Asperger’s, ADHD and other Learning Differences.
The St. Francis Gallery, 1370 Pleasant Street: The St. Francis Gallery, opened in August, 2012, is a not-for-profit organization founded by Dr. Philip Pryjma. All proceeds from the St. Francis Gallery benefit the Sawa Sawa foundation, which works to build and strengthen communities in impoverished nations. The gallery features contemporary work in different media by local artists.
Animagic Museum of Animation, Special Effects and Art, 135 Main Street: The slogan at Animagic is “for kids from 5 to 95,” so you know going in, this space is lighthearted and fun. When you arrive, observe ceramics and other works by Irina Borisova, a multi-talented artist and co-owner of Animagic.
After that, you can take a guided tour of Animagic, showcasing the surprisingly rich special effects history of the Berkshires. See original models used in famous movies and a genuine Academy Award won by Eugene Mamut, a co-owner of Animagic. Learn about modern technologies that made such blockbuster movies as The Matrix, X-Men and Chicken Run possible. The tour is free and takes about 20 minutes. A variety of hands-on activities are also available.
This is just a small sample of what we have to offer, and look how diverse the selection! If you would like to see something in particular, do not hesitate to ask your innkeepers – they have extensive knowledge about the area and its attractions. We hope to see you in the Berkshires this summer!
May 8th, 2013 by Katie Pate
You can get a walking tour map from the Lee visitor information center at the Chamber of Commerce, a 2 Park Place. Here are some of our favorite stops on the tour:
Congregational Church. (25 Park Place) The 150-foot steeple makes this church the tallest structure in town. It is an unusually fine example of Romanesque style of architecture and it is the dominant feature of the green on which it stands. It was burned down in the Main Street fire of 1857 and rebuilt. Afterwards, it became a favorite item of gossip in other Congregational churches in the Berkshires because it was too ornate and fancy. From June through October tours are given every Saturday morning from 11 am to 1 pm.
Lee Library. (100 Main St.) The original part of the Lee Library was built in 1907 and is the only remaining “Carnegie library” building in the Berkshires. Lee Marble Works quarried and cut the local marble used in the construction.
Memorial Hall. (32 Main St.) Built in 1874, the town offices and Lee Police Station are housed here. The entire structure is a Civil War Memorial. Etched on tablets inside the building read the names of 38 Lee men killed in the War Between the States.
St. George Episcopal Church. (20 Franklin St) The Church was built in 1858. In 1861, it was burned to the ground. After another fire in 1879, several improvements were made to the building. Most notable among them were two beautiful stained glass windows. One, entitled “The Light of the World”, was installed in the nave of the church. The window pictures Jesus knocking at a door with no outside latch, bringing the message that hearts, like the door, should be open.
Visiting the Berkshires this Summer?
Come and stay with us at the Applegate Inn Bed and Breakfast. Between our expansive grounds, pool and luxurious guestrooms, you will be thrilled with your choice!
April 26th, 2013 by Katie Pate
Looking to plan a get together with the girls this spring? Why not take a weekend or overnight trip to the Berkshires and shop to your heart’s content at the Lee Premium Outlets? With 60 outlet stores, you are sure to find something (well, maybe a few things) you can’t live without, along with a perfect gift for Mother’s Day. Find impressive savings at Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, BCBG Max Azria, Brooks Brothers, Cole Haan, Gap Outlet, J.Crew, Lacoste, Nike, Polo Ralph Lauren, Talbots and more. See the full listing on shops on the Outlet mall website.
Catch a quick lunch at one of their eateries. Don’t forget summer is around the corner! Hit up the Sunglasses Hut, Michael Kors or Coach and get yourself some shades.
Mother’s Day Getaway?
Maybe taking your mother (and sister and their best friends) to the Berkshires could be a great way to celebrate Mother’s Day this year!
Go shopping together and enjoy staying at our beautiful bed and breakfast. We have 10 luxuriant guestrooms or select our carriage house suite, an independent cottage separated from the main house, with two bedrooms. Start your day right with one of our delicious home made breakfasts.
Along with beautiful rooms, the grounds at Applegate Inn will be a pleasant addition. Relax on the porch near the pool in wicker furniture with comfortable cushions, perfect for starting a good book or chatting with friends.
Get some sun in the lounge chairs at the pool’s edge. Lounge chairs can easily be moved under one of our two apple trees that flank the pool if you need some shade later in the afternoon. Two comfortable hammocks are also located near the pool.
Come and see us this spring!
April 11th, 2013 by Katie Pate
The Appalachian National Scenic Trail (AT) is a hiking path that runs 2175 miles from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mount Katahdin in Maine. Ninety miles of this long-distance trail are in Massachusetts, running along the tops of the ridges and through the valleys of Berkshire County.
The Appalachian Trail in Massachusetts provides diverse hiking opportunities for long-distance backpackers. However, there are also beautiful and accessible routes for the day hiker. The AT travels over Mount Everett in the south, Mount Greylock in the north and and through the Housatonic and Hoosac Valley’s small towns.
Appalachian Trail Day Hikes
These are some of the hikes closest to our Berkshires Inn, in Lee.
Cobble Hill. This a 3.4 mile round trip hike that starts at Main Road in Lee, 5 miles Southeast of US 20. There is limited parking along the roadside. Head South on the trail; after .1 miles, cross the Hop Brook bridge. At mile 0.8, pass through a hemlock grove and cross a small stream. 0.3 miles later, cross Jerusalem Road, which puts you in the Tyringham Cobble Reservation. Another 0.3 miles from the road crossing, reach a side trail (the 0.3 miles) to the top of Cobble Hill for a rewarding view. Retrace your steps to complete the hike.
Warner Hill. This is an easy 1.4 mile round trip hike originating in Pittsfield. Reach the trail by following Blotz Road 6 miles east out of Pittsfield or for 1.3 miles west from Massachusetts 8. From Blotz Rd. head South on the trail and climb .7 miles through a dense evergreen forest to the top of Warner Hill. A cairn that sits a few feet to the left of the Trail marks the summit. Retrace your steps to complete the hike.
Rest Your Feet On Our Hearth!
After a day of exploring the Appalachian Trail and the natural beauty of the Berkshires, head back to our bed and breakfast for a comfortable room with fireplace to warm your feet. Or perhaps a deep soaking tub is what you’d prefer. Either way, we have what you need!
March 25th, 2013 by Katie Pate
While you may feel like it is still winter, the Spring has arrived and summer will be just around the corner!
One of the biggest events of the Berkshire summer is the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. This is the longest-running dance festival in the nation; Jacob’s Pillow plays host to more than 50 dance companies. There will be over 350 free and ticketed performances, talks, exhibits, films, classes, tours, and community events. The festival takes place over 10 weeks (mostly weekends) of the summer, starting with the Opening Gala on Saturday June 15th and ending the last weekend of August.
Jacob’s Pillow is offering a variety of different ways to get to the front of the line when ordering tickets for the performances you want to see the most.
By becoming a member (minimum $60 donation) a subscriber (purchase tickets to 5 or more events) you can purchase your tickets before April 8, when they go on sale to the public.
If you are unsure which performances you would like to attend when becoming a subscriber, Jacob’s Pillow has grouped shows together based on themes: Around the World, Ballet Lovers, Music Lovers, American Artists and the Variety Package.
2103 Festival Highlights
Here are a couple of the performances already slated for early this summer:
DANCE THEATER OF HARLEM (June 19-23) The preeminent American dance company opens the Festival with The Lark Ascending by Alvin Ailey, George Balanchine’s masterwork Agon, and more.
COMPAGNIE KÄFIG (June 26-30) The sold-out hip-hop show of 2012 returns! Experience the virtuosity, humor, and irresistible energy of this unique production from Brazil and France.
Lodging in Lee, MA
Our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast is located in the quaint town of Lee, about 20 minutes away from Jacob’s Pillow. We are business partners with the dance company and one of the most convenient accommodations to the festival.