Red Chair has arrived in the Berkshires!
What, you may be asking, is the ‘Red Chair?’ Well, here is a description from the Red Chair Travels website that will clarify:
“The Red Chair is a symbol, a movement, a phenomenon, a happening. Not just a simple wooden chair, this bright red vintage object is moving from place to beautiful place, exploring the best of New England all this year.
Move aside Flat Stanley, lie down garden gnome, hang yourself out to dry traveling pants… the Red Chair has arrived and captured the hearts and minds of America. This humble desk accoutrement, crimson paint peeling and wooden legs wobbling, will journey around New England building connections, meeting innkeepers and generally exploring some of the most beautiful corners of our country.”
Sounds fun, right? The Red Chair’s visit to our Berkshires bed and breakfast was a great way for us to share with travelers all that the Berkshires has to offer as well as our thriving little community of Lee. Here are the places we brought the Red Chair:
1. Jacob’s Pillow Dance
The first stop was Jacob’s Pillow in Becket, where Red Chair took center stage. Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival is a National Historic Landmark and National Medal of Arts recipient. Jacob’s Pillow was recently called “the dance center of the nation” by The New York Times. The Pillow brings together dance, music, art and culture with more than 300 events year-round, including free outdoor performances, photography and art exhibits, free talks and discussions, onsite dining, and much more. Dance companies from around the world and across the United States perform in two theatres and an outdoor stage throughout the summer. Jacob’s Pillow is a touchstone for a vast network of audience members, dance lovers, performers, students and others.
2. Massachusetts Leg of Appalachian Trail
On the way back to Lee we stopped at the Appalachian Trail crossing on Route 20 and Len took Red Chair for a short hike.
3. Christmas Shopping at Lee Premium Outlets
4. Walking Tour of Historic Downtown Lee
Red Chair visited the First Congregational Church of Lee. The cornerstone of the Church was laid in the summer of 1857. The wooden frame steeple is reputed to be the tallest in New England.
5. Good Purpose Art Gallery
The Good Purpose Art Gallery features the work of professional artists who are supportive and embrace the mission of the College Internship Program, a comprehensive post-secondary program for young adults with Asperger’s, ADHD and other Learning Differences.
6. The Lee Library
The Lee Library, built in 1907 of marble quarried just outside of town, was a quiet resting spot for Red Chair. She daydreamed under the carvings of an open book and construction date that reside above the front door.
Day One Ends at our Berkshire Bed and Breakfast
We brought Red Chair back to Applegate to relax and warm up. Red Chair enjoyed hanging out by the Christmas tree and regaling the other guests with stories of her adventures in Lee as they all sat in front of the fire and enjoyed wine and cheese.
The next morning Red Chair enjoyed breakfast in the dining room at Applegate Inn. This is a special time of year, when the dining room is decorated with our collection of unique Menorahs. Joining our family’s traditional and whimsical Menorahs are museum quality pieces, many that were gifts to us by family, friends and former guests. Red Chair put on the Menorah hat and tried to blend in!
7. Housatonic River
This was a more relaxed day for Red Chair. She stopped at the Housatonic River and quickly understood what Oliver Wendell Holmes meant when he said, “There’s no tonic like the Housatonic”.
8. Laurel Lake
On day two we brought Red Chair to Laurel Lake. Red Chair sat wistfully next to the lone canoe sitting on the rack next to the lake. She was imagining floating on the lake on a breezy summer day in the canoe.
9. High Lawn Farm
High Lawn Farm was next on the agenda for Red Chair. Sadly, Farm’s signage was blown away by Hurricane Sandy, but the barns themselves made a stunning backdrop for her visit.
High Lawn Farm has been in continuous operation for over 100 years. The proprietorship was assumed by Colonel H. G. Wilde and Mrs. Marjorie Field Wilde in 1935 from Mrs. Wilde’s family, and today it continues under the ownership and guidance of the next generation. It is the last remaining, complete dairy farm in the Berkshires – producing, bottling and delivering its own milk – representing over 100 years in the same family. What a special place!
10. Dining at Chez Nous
Red Chair was welcomed to Chez Nous by Rachel Portnoy. Rachel and her husband, Franck Tessier, are the chef- owners of Chez Nous. Myself, Len and Red Chair enjoyed a delicious, relaxed and gluten-free dining experience.
Finishing Another Day of Bershires Travel at the Applegate Inn
After a day spent taking in the natural beauty of the Berkshires, Red Chair relaxed once again in front of a crackling fire in the living room at Applegate. She tried to imagine what it would be like to visit in the summer…to lounge outdoors by the pool at Applegate or to attend a concert at Tanglewood. We hope she will come back and visit us again!