Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A little about our Barnside Luxury Suites, Suite 201

Our elegant and romantic "Barnside" Luxury Suites never fail to elicit a "WOW!" response! They were created to anticipate your every need and to provide a unique and exceptional lodging option in Williamstown. Quite grand and appointed in six unique period styles, the refined fabrics & the individually chosen appointments will pamper your desire for something extraordinary and unique.

A full country candlelight breakfast is provided, and complimentary wireless internet is available in each guest room, on the porch, and in the breakfast room. The "Barnside" Luxury Inn is a 3-Diamond AAA rated property!

All six suites have a ground floor entrance from an exterior wicker-filled country porch. They each provide one grand room, (many with 10 foot ceilings, 48 feet deep), with a king size bed, dining area, large living area, and a mantled gas fireplace. The romantic beds are all pillow topped, and most have canopies or 4 posts. There is a large dressing room that opens up to a spacious bathroom complete with showers and dual whirlpool tubs.

Each luxury suite has a different "period" personality and is furnished with many hand chosen antiques. All suites are equipped with 27" cable TV's and DVD/CD players, 2-line telephones with data ports, coffee makers, irons and boards, terry robes, triple sheeted pressed white bed linens, and fine bathing amenities.

We have a solution for special circumstances: Suite 201 offers a kitchenette. Although all of the suites accommodate 2 persons, Suites 202 and 205 are equipped with a queen sofa bed which may, at additional rate, sleep up to 4 persons of the same family over the age of fourteen.

A full country candlelight breakfast is provided. With advance notice, we are happy to accommodate special dietary restrictions such as "low carb", "low fat", vegetarian", etc. and of course any food allergies.

Suite 201, Early American Suite 1600-1775

Formal & Handsome. Colonial Antiques & Decor. Draped King Canopy Bed, Whirlpool Bath for 2, Gas Fireplace in BR, 2 TV's, Dressing Room, Equipped Kitchenette, Dining Table, Living Area. DVD/CD, 2-line phone, WIFI, iron/board. Full candlelight breakfast.

You've just checked in. You are impressed by all the theatres, museums, and cultural activities there are in the area. As you walk over the flower-laden footbridge to your suite, you notice a couple enjoying a picnic by the brook shore. Upon entering your suite, you just know you've entered another era.

The oversize wing chairs, the camelback loveseat, the draped tester king bed, the crewel-like spread and handmade patchwork quilt take you back to our earliest Colonial period. Oriental carpets and Asian porcelain pieces suggest the influence of the export trade of that time. The elongated room seems to extend forever, and then turns to display your dressing room and bath.

Not only is there a television in the living area, the armoire in the bedroom opens to reveal a second television and DVD/CD player. Instead of unpacking, your wife is already nestled in a bedside wing chair, flipping through her favorite periodical by the fireplace! She mentions that in the coming days with this convenient kitchenette and so many things to see, it may save time to have lunch right here in our very own private dining space. You sense that she has really settled in and has planned a packed itinerary. You decide to extend your stay!

Don't Forget! August Special:
Summer Weekends Last Hurrah!

20% off all room rates Labor Day Weekend 
(Friday, Saturday & Sunday).
Must mention this special.  Not applicable to current reservations, and not valid with other offers.
Call 888-999-1896, or mention online when booking!

1896 House Inn & Country Lodgings
Bed and Breakfast  ~ Country Inn ~ Country Motels
Route 7 ~ 910 Cold Spring Road, Williamstown, Massachusetts  (MA) 01267
Telephone: 413-458-1896   ~   Toll Free:  888-999-1896
Lodging Website:  ~   '6 House Pub Website

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Crane and Company Old Stone Mill Rag Room

A great place to take a midweek tour into a slice (or a page) right out of history.

The Papermaking Museum at Crane's Old Stone Mill
40 Pioneer Street, Dalton, Massachusetts (about 1/2 hour for the 1896 House)
(413) 684-7780

This structure represents the oldest paper factory (c. 1844) in continuous operation at one site, and outstandingly documents the early development of the American paper industry through the 19th and into the 20th century.

The museum, first opened in the autumn of 1930, it is on the National Register of Historic Places, National Register Number: 83004376. The one-story building is situated on the banks of the Housatonic River, which supplied the water to wash the rags and drive the machinery of the early Crane mills.

The museum is open Monday through Friday from 1 to 5 p.m., free of charge, from early June through mid-October. 

Some interesting facts about Crane & Co.
Crane and Co. has been making fine paper for over 200 years and is now in its seventh generation of being owned and operated by the Crane family.

Papers made by Stephen Crane were used to print patriotic newspapers and broadsides leading up to and during the war, and were even engraved for Colonial Currency by Paul Revere. Revere even pastured his horses at the Liberty Paper Mill, just in case he needed to make a midnight ride…

Franklin and Eleanor conducted the affairs of a nation on Crane paper.

The Queen Mum announced the celebration of her 100th birthday on Crane paper.

Paul Revere engraved banknotes for the Colony of Massachusetts Bay on Crane paper to help finance the American Revolution.

As early as 1806, local and regional banks began printing currency on Zenas Crane's fine cotton papers. This was quickly followed by official government proclamations, permanent public records and stocks and bonds.

In the mid 1800s. Crane’s began making 100% cotton stationary. Soon after that, it was discovered that trees could be made into paper. Crane stayed with what they thought and currently still use what they think the best material to make paper out of; cotton.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bella Terra Festival this weekend and ideas for some things to do during the week

Bella Terra Festival, Stephentown, New York (less then 30 minutes from the 1896 Inn)
August 16th – 19th, 2012
Bella Terra Festival is an outdoor music and arts festival that occurs over multiple days and nights and features several stages of performances, artists and other programming. Gardner’s Farm in Stephentown, New York will be home to the third annual Bella Terra Festival, located between Albany, New York and The Berkshires in western Massachusetts.

Bella Terra celebrates a positive and progressive outlook and lifestyle, grassroots organization and activism, consciousness and creativity, self expression through artistic mediums, and the pursuit of a holistic existence that balances body, mind & spirit. Music and art can be a great platform to promote awareness, consciousness and sustainability and unite a people to affect societal progress. Bella Terra Festival uses this platform to call attention to the need to reestablish a spiritual connection between mankind and the Earth and perpetuate an ideology of global unification.

Bella Terra Festival recognizes that changing one’s own life for the better goes hand in hand with improving the world around us. This is why Bella Terra advocates that each person pursue his or her own dreams, open their minds and realize their maximum potential. To help meet these ends at Bella Terra Festival, many classes, workshops, and lectures in music, art, nature, politics and beyond are offered, in addition to a host of other programs and entertainment to help deliver our message.

Sun, Mon, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat until August 18, 2012
Impressions of New England
Bennington Center for the Arts & Museum of the Covered Bridge
Bennington, VT
This annual exhibition will include over 60 scenes captured in paint and bronze. Seashores, rolling hills, foliage and New England wildlife will be depicted in over seventy fine works of art.

Ghost Tours At The Mount, Edith Wharton’s Home
Lenox, MA
For over a century, The Mount has been home to writers, actors, wealthy families, hard-working servants, and teenage girls. Tour the most haunted parts of the estate to find out what spirits might still be lurking. Tours begin at 7:30pm, last 90 minutes and not recommended for visitors 12 years and younger due to mature content.  Reservations are highly recommended as most tours sell out. See website for more details.

Mondays until August 28, 2012
Monday Lecture Series at The Mount, Edith Wharton’s Home
Lenox, MA
The 20th season of the Lecture Series promises to be one to remember! This year they are proud to offer an exciting mix of historians and biographers who will take you from the Romanov Dynasty, to the Gilded Age, to Paris and the Roaring Twenties. Lectures begin at 4 pm and are followed by a tea and book signing. For schedule visit the website. Seating is limited and early ticket purchase is highly recommended. $18 members, $20 non-members.

Weekly on Tuesday until October 3, 2012
Tyke Hike
North Adams
For children ages 8 and under with their parents/guardians. Take a short hike with the Park Interpreter to explore the nature around us. A great opportunity to introduce children to the outdoors. Wear sturdy shoes, bug spray and bring water bottle. Programs are free and start at the Natural Bridge Visitor Center with a $2.00 parking fee. 1:00 pm & 3:00 pm.

Wednesdays until October 4, 2012
Healthy Heart Walk at Natural Bridge State Park
Location: North Adams, MA
Easy 3/8 mile fitness walk on Healthy Heart woodland trail with Park Interpreter at 1pm. Bring sturdy shoes and water bottle. Programs are free and start at the Natural Bridge Visitor Center with a $2.00 parking fee.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Now is a great time to go berry and apple picking picking!

Right now is the perfect time of year to go fruit picking in the Berkshires! A great way to spend quality time with the family, stock up the pantry and get ready time bake up a storm or just enjoy them fresh with a little whipped cream.

The area abounds with farms and PYO farms, a lovely mouthwatering way to take home a taste of the Berkshires not far from the 1896House and great Saturday or Sunday bit of fun in the sun.

A great tip to hold your fresh berries and keep them fresh a little longer. Mix 1 tea. white vinegar with 1 cup fresh water, rinse the berries briefly and pat dry. Store in the refrigerator in a glass container. The berries don’t pick up the vinegar flavor but kill the mold spores on the berries.

The Apple Barn & Country Bake Shop (20 minutes from the Inn)
Strawberries, blueberries, Fall red raspberries
Rt 7 South, Bennington, VT 05201.
Pick Your Own, Weather Permitting; Everbearing Strawberries - Mid June until October; Blueberries - Early July - Early August; Red Raspberries - Mid August to late September. Open: Call for PYO hours and availability.

Lakeview Orchard (25 minutes from the Inn)
Sweet and Tart Cherries, Apples, plums, raspberries (Spring, red), raspberries (Autumn, red), raspberries (black), Honey from hives on the farm, Cider mill (fresh apple cider made on the premises)
94 Old Cheshire Road, Lanesboro, MA 01237.
Early July to October 31; Tuesday through Sunday 9 am to 5:30 pm; Columbus Day Monday.

Mountain View Farm (25 minutes from the Inn)
Blueberries, strawberries
90 Old Cheshire Road, Lanesboro, MA 01225.
Open: Monday to Friday, from 8am to 6pm; Saturday and Sunday, from 8am to 4pm.

Bartlett's Orchard (45 minutes from the Inn)
Apples, raspberries and flowers 575 Swamp Road, Richmond, MA
PYO, call for hours; Stand open 8-5pm, 7 days a week

Hilltop Orchard / Furnace Brook Winery (45 minutes from the Inn)
Open: Wed to Sunday, 9am to 5pm Labor Day until Columbus Day for PYO
Containers provided, children welcome, picnicking and free hayrides on weekends.  View cider mill and offer hard cider.  Year round stand and bakery

Kirchner's Farm (45 minutes from the Inn)
Blueberries and raspberries
131 Churchill Street, Pittsfield, MA.
Open: Mid July thru early September Call for appointment.

The Maple Connection/the Harvest Pride (45 minutes from the Inn)
Apples, maple syrup
Route 143, PO 565, Hinsdale, MA 01235
Crops are usually available in February, March, April, September, October, November. Open: year round please call ahead for times and crop we are picking and or boiling maple syrup; Please call ahead for PYO

Strawberry Acres Farm (45 minutes from the Inn)
370 Pittsfield Road, Hinsdale, MA 01235. Phone: 413-655-2672
Open: 9am to 5pm daily.