MONDAY, MAY 20, 2019 - Welcome to STOCKBRIDGE, Massachusetts.
Check into the FAIRFIELD INN (Great Barrington) for a two-night stay. Your LOCAL GUIDE will meet you at your hotel. DINNER is included this evening at the HISTORIC RED LION INN. Built in 1773 as a stage-coach stop, the inn's emblem is a bright Red Lion with a green tip on his tail. The green symbolizes rebellion against the crown! Take time to stroll the inn, see the antique furniture and admire the famous "teapot collection" (hundreds of teapots from all over the world).
TUESDAY, MAY 21, 2019 - BREAKFAST is included this morning at your hotel. Meet your LOCAL GUIDE for a full day of touring. Your day begins with a BERKSHIRE COTTAGES TOUR. On this driving tour you will hear stories about the characters and explore the era of the "Gilded Age". The Berkshires are known as the Inland Newport and display mansions built during the turn of the century before the days of income tax. These estates, also called cottages, were the homes of Andrew Carnegie, Harley Proctor of Proctor and Gamble Co., George Westinghouse, the Vanderbilt's and many others who formed the American Aristocracy. See the exteriors of these fine homes. (This tour includes many Bed and Breakfast, Historic Inns, that used to be Berkshire Cottages) This tour includes an INSIDER'S TOUR of TRINITY CHURCH in LENOX, which was the Church of the Cottagers.
Next, is a tour of CHESTERWOOD, the home of Daniel Chester French, sculptor of the seated Lincoln of the Memorial in Washington DC and the Minuteman in Concord, MA. See several statues of Lincoln and hear how French developed an idea into one of our nation's most well- known monuments. When speaking of his time at Chesterwood, Mr. French told his many friends that he spent six months of the year in heaven and the rest of the time in New York. You will see French's home, studio with all his equipment and gallery, also the shortest railroad in the world.
Your guide will conduct a tour of STOCKBRIDGE. Stories are told about the founders of the town and others who have had an impact on its growth. See the former Norman Rockwell Museum at the Old Corner House. You will see the First Church, the Children's Chimes Chapel, the village cemetery, where the first slave to be legally freed in the U.S. is buried, and many other points of interest. This is a light and informative tour with history, humor and facts. Enjoy some free time in STOCKBRIDGE for lunch and shopping on your own. This is where Norman Rockwell lived and worked. You will enjoy a variety of small restaurants to choose from in this quaint, "picture postcard" town.
This afternoon you will tour the MOUNT, which was the home of Edith Wharton, the first woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize - for her work "The Age of Innocence". (1920) Edith Wharton oversaw the design, construction and furnishing of The Mount and its gardens. A National Historic Landmark, the tour reveals the history of The Mount from its building to its restoration, and chronicles Wharton's life, her remarkable achievements and her literary legacy. The house tour features three floors of elegant formal and private rooms. Highlights include Wharton's library, her newly restored bedroom suite, and back of the house areas, including the old kitchen. Tours appeal to lovers of architecture, restoration, history, and literature; and can be customized to emphasize a particular area of interest. One of our skilled guides will lead your group on an hour-long exploration of Edith Wharton's gracious s
DINNER is included this evening at APPLE TREE INN. From the Gilded ages to the last and largest Alice's Restaurant, Apple Tree Inn is filled with history and wonderful stores. The Inn is set on a hilltop directly across from Tanglewood.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 22, 2019 - BREAKFAST is included this morning at your hotel. Check out and depart. Visit the NORMAN ROCKWELL MUSEUM in Stockbridge. See many of the illustrator's works in the original oil paintings at your own pace. Learn about this beloved artist and his iconic paintings of small-town Americana. The Museum presents the world's largest collection of original Norman Rockwell art, including beloved paintings from The Saturday Evening Post and the Four Freedoms.
Travel to DEERFIELD. LUNCH at the HISTORIC DEERFIELD INN. After lunch visit the HISTORIC DEERFIELD MUSEUM. You will start with an ORIENTATION VIDEO and your docent will then present an overview of Historic Deerfield. She will then share some "MYSTERY OBJECTS" with you, for you to learn what they are and about life in the village. There will be a COOKING DEMONSTRATION at a fireside hearth. You will then tour the STEBBINS HOUSE.
Travel to STURBRIDGE. Check in for a two-night stay at the brand new TILLYER HOUSE at the PUBLICK HOUSE INN. DINNER is included at the Inn.
THURSDAY, MAY 23, 2019 - BREAKFAST is included this morning at your Inn. Your day begins with admission to OLD STURBRIDGE VILLAGE. (One hour docent tour and one hour on own) The village is an authentic recreation of a rural New England Community in the transformative years between 1790 and 1840. Each historic building has been carefully restored and the costumed villagers go about daily life just as their New England ancestors did. At the Village, everyone has the unique opportunity to see, hear, feel, smell, taste and experience early American history up close. Lunch will be on your own at the village.
Travel to Spencer for a stop at the OAKWOOD FARM CHRISTMAS BARN – an old fashion Christmas shop that will put you in the spirit of the season any time of year! This 160-year old barn features a dazzling display of ornaments, nativities, Santa's and carolers. The vintage decorations on display will bring back memories of Christmas past.
Travel to West Brookfield to the HISTORIC SALEM CROSS INN. Your LOCAL GUIDE will step on board for a driving tour that delves into the intriguing history of how and why the QUABBIN RESERVOIR was built during the Depression. Four of the towns in the Swift River Valley were flooded to create a drinking supply for Boston and surrounding towns. It was a controversial move at the time, but it gave people struggling to find work a government-funded job. Though the project uprooted many families and homes, the end result is a majestic, pristine, protected area for wildlife, and a park for people to enjoy, in addition to being Boston's water supply.
Back at the Inn you are welcome to take a WAGON RIDE around the grounds. Settle in as the baker prepares a deep-dish apple pie from scratch right before your eyes using the freshest ingredients available and apples picked from the trees in our local orchards. Help peel the apples with an antique apple peeler and corer. Learn some of the secrets to rolling out a perfect crust and making a mouth-watering dessert. Then we'll top it with fresh whipped cream. Let the FIREPLACE FEAST begin! Relax by the fieldstone fireplace as the crackling fire roasts your prime rib "to a turn" by rotating it slowly over a crackling fire of wild cherry logs. This jack is the only known 1700's antique roasting jack that was used to roast fowl and beef in New England that is still in use. The flavor of the fireplace roasted prime rib is unsurpassed. Beware the brimming bowl of freshly whipped cream – the perfect complement to New England's Best Apple Pie served from an antique wooden bowl. After a full day return to your lodging.
FRIDAY, MAY 24, 2019 - BREAKFAST is included this morning at your Inn. Travel home.
This itinerary is approximate. The exact times, days and destinations may vary due to unforeseen circumstances.