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
Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art
Greenock Country Club for golf and tennis (across the street from our 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.
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 lovely St. Francis Gallery
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!
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.
The Historic Lee Library
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!
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!
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.
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.
Click on the image for a PDF of the Appalachian Trail in Massachusetts.
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!
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.
One of America’s consummate satirists is coming to the Berkshires! It is not too early to buy your ticket for David Sedaris’ show in Great Barrington on April 6. A quick 20 minute drive from our Berkshires bed and breakfast in Lee brings you to the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, at 14 Castle St. where Sedaris will be speaking.
With sardonic wit and incisive social critiques, David Sedaris is established as one of America’s dominant humor writers. With great skill, Sedaris cuts through through cultural euphemisms and political correctness, showing Sedaris as master of satire and one of the most observant writers addressing the human condition today.
“Mr. Sedaris tells the first fable from the point of view of a curious owl that asks questions of the more interesting prey. This owl is on a quest to be more than just his appetites and drive to hunt. If the prey has an interesting story, the owl releases it only to watch his parasitic (and hilariously stupid) family show up to eat the poor creatures anyway. The tales are told in a matter of fact style that is both absurd and surreal. I have yet to shake the image of the owl’s passive aggressive mother arriving as he is about to snack on an unfortunate rabbit.
Good storytellers reveal the world more than tell the listener or reader something new. There are a multitude of facts on this planet but Sedaris crafts the story behind them and puts a kaleidoscope spin on even scientific facts. As part of the owl fable, there is something revealed about leeches and hippos that could have been a gross out moment. I took away a new attitude about leeches and a new respect for gerbils.”
If you are a Sedaris fan, this is a night well worth the $45 – $65 ticket price.
10×10 New Play Festival at Barrington Stage Company
Running through March 3rd at the Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center. 36 Linden Street, Pittsfield MA.
Thurs-Fri-Sat at 7:30 p.m.; Sat-Sun at 3 p.m.
$20 Thursday evenings and Sat-Sun matinees; $25 Friday and Saturday evenings
Head to Pittsfield, about 20 minutes north of our Berkshire Inn, to the St. Germain Stage for an evening of ten 10-minute plays by 10 different playwrights, featuring seven talented actors as part of the 2013 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival. Fortunately for you, the show is running for an extended three week period!
The Lair by Shakespeare & Company in Lenox
The Liar by Shakespeare & Company in Lenox MA.
Running through March 24th at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theater. 70 Kemble Street, Lenox MA.
Fri-Sat at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
$22-$42 for Friday and Saturdays; $15-$25 for Sunday matinees
A tangled web of lies, misdirected advances and the unmistakable confusion of love, The Liar has all of the ingredients that make for a great French farce.
The truth will set most people free, but for Dorante, the disingenuous hero, a sequence of fibs may pave a convoluted road to happiness. A hilarious farce about mistaken identity, The Liar was originally penned by the classic 17th-century French playwright Pierre Corneille, in 1664. This adaptation by award-winning American playwright David Ives merges the iambic humor of classic verse with a contemporary twist.
Let Us Be Your Berkshires Lodging!
Whatever brings you to the Berkshires, theater or Tanglewood, Skiing or sketching, we would love to host you in our elegant and spacious inn, located in Lee, MA.
Ski Butternut is regarded by many as the number one Massachusetts ski resort. Located on the East Mountain, ski Butternut provides 110 acres of skiing, spread across 22 trails. All of the trails are also supplemented with man-made snow as necessary.
Butternut is a friendly resort that also has many family – oriented ski areas, ideal for youngsters just learning to ski or snowboard. Ski Butternut is also affordable, offering bargain ski lift tickets and downright cheap season passes. Of course, they also offer ski and snowboard lessons and rental skis or snowboard packages.
Last post, we talked about places to cross country ski near the inn. For this post, we target those that live for the thrill and speed of alpine skiing!
Typically, our area of the Berkshires doesn’t get as much snow as the New England coast, but the snow stays longer. The first flakes fall before Thanksgiving and gets heavier in mid-December. By January the snow is building up as temperatures drop. A thaw at the end of January cleans the palate for the February storms. In March there are often early signs of spring, but the white stuff usually lingers into April.
That adds up to a four month ski season, give or take a few weeks. But that’s just the natural stuff.