Arts, Family, Food, History, Outdoors, Travel

20-20 Hindsight

Canceled, postponed and streaming: UpCountry cultural venues are missed, not forgotten

Compiled by Jack Lyons and Christopher Parker

Change does not come easy in New England. We, as a people, take pride in our traditions, our celebrations and our festivals. Our weather might change at the drop of a hat, but a true New Englander knows what season is upon them by what events and festivities are taking place. We look forward to our traditions; marking time by counting down the days to the start of a festival or the opening of a show. They are part of the fabric that makes up our communities. 

In UpCountry — the Berkshires and Southern Vermont — the summer season is a magical time; full of creativity and culture. Here, we offer something for everyone — music, dance, art, theater, outdoor recreation and more. Unfortunately, in this time of uncertainty caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic and in an abundance of caution for the safety of their guests and staff, many of our cultural venues have shut their doors for the entire season. 

Sadly, no heifers strolled down the streets of Brattleboro this year and picnics will not take place at Tanglewood as the Boston Symphony Orchestra plays. The stages of Williamstown, Oldcastle, Chester, Weston and Dorset will remain dark; Shakespeare will not be heard in Lenox or in the woods of Manchester. Festivals celebrating blueberries, faeries, garlic and the Potterverse have been canceled and agricultural fairgrounds will remain empty this season. 

And while many of these cultural organizations have found a way, virtually, to stay connected to their patrons, their absence, physically, leaves noticeable holes in our communities. So, here, we pay homage to 40 of those closed (or partially closed) cultural organizations and venues that we dearly miss and cannot wait to visit again.


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