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Culture to Do: Dec. 6, 2023

Springfield Symphony Orchestra's Jolly Holiday concert will be performed at Symphony Hall on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 4 p.m.

All Creatures Great & Small New Season Preview
South Hadley Public Library Community Room
Tuesday, Dec. 12 at 6 p.m.
Return to the breathtaking Yorkshire Dales for drama, hijinks, love, friendship, and heart-warming humor. "All Creatures Great & Small" season 4 promises to deliver everything you love about seasons 1-3, plus new faces, new paws, new hoofs, and new hopes and dreams.

Holiday Stomp with The Hot Sardines
Bowker Auditorium, UMass
Thursday, Dec. 7 at 7:30 p.m.
New York’s Hot Sardines have been pulling audience members out of their seats with their distinctive lighthearted and lively mix of hot jazz, swing, and stride since 2007. Formed by pianist Evan Palazzo and vocalist Elizabeth Bougerol, the Hot Sardines are united by a love of early twentieth century jazz forms and fueled by a belief that classic jazz feeds the heart and soul. This performance will find the band putting their signature swinging sound to a selection of holiday favorites.

Pioneer Valley Ballet Presents the Nutcracker
Academy of Music, Northampton
Friday, Dec 8 – Sunday, Dec 10
Pioneer Valley Ballet’s Nutcracker is reinvented by Artistic Directors Maryanne Kodzis and Thomas Vacanti, celebrating the history of the company and the tradition of Clara’s magical story. In addition to their own PVB dancers and members of the local community, this production welcomes guest artists from Carolina Ballet.

Art Gallery Open House
Northampton Center for the Arts
Friday, Dec. 8 from 5:30 – 7 p.m.
I went to a dance recital at the Northampton Center for the Arts last summer. It was the very last event before it temporarily closed for renovations. Fast forward to now, and we’re invited to an open house to check out the brand-new dedicated Art Gallery. There will be time for refreshments and mingling, as well as a chance to hear about the evolution of the gallery, how to have an exhibit, and what to expect in 2024.

Wilbraham Community Chorus Winter Concert
First Church of Christ, Longmeadow
Saturday, Dec. 9 at 2 p.m.
The Wilbraham Community Chorus presents its annual winter concert, conducted by Raymond Drury and accompanied by Marcia Jackson and Todd Rovelli. Thet will perform an intriguing program consisting of choral masterpieces from yesterday and today, folksongs, pop tunes, Broadway classics and seasonal numbers from composers such as Vivaldi, Forrest, Gjeilo, Bernon, Beck, Blake, Berlin and others. This concert is open to the public and free.

Springfield Symphony Orchestra: Jolly Holiday
Symphony Hall
Saturday, Dec. 9 at 4 p.m.
Festive pre-concert activities start at 2:30 p.m.
Guest conducted by William Waldrop and featuring American Idol star Michael Lynche, this family-friendly concert will be filled with beautiful and heartwarming music — from Michael Lynche’s soulful versions of Christmas classics to beautiful Hannukah melodies, to the orchestral magic of Tchaikovsky; from the incredible brass of a Sousa-inspired march, to choristers raising their voices in timeless carols.

Northampton Santacon
Saturday, Dec. 9 from 7 p.m. – 2 a.m.
This is a fabulous fundraiser for Toys for Tots and more. Here’s how it works: Head to downtown Northampton dressed as Santa or the holiday character of your choosing. Meet at Pulaski Park for a big group photo before dispersing to various participating bars and pubs where you can deliver unwrapped toys. You get a raffle ticket for each gift (or you can purchase raffle tickets for $5). The raffle winner will be pulled on Sunday Dec. 10. That lucky person will win the raffle basket of $25 gift cards from each bar on the crawl. Proceeds go to Northampton’s Manna Kitchen.

Mother Tongue
by the Performance Project's First Generation Ensemble
Bombyx, Florence
Saturday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m.
Mother Tongue is an original multilingual physical theater performance, created by the Performace Project’s First Generation Ensemble. Mother Tongue is inspired by the experiences of the ensemble members, their families and communities who are from Congo/Tanzania, Bhutan/Nepal, South Sudan/Darfur, Puerto Rico, Holyoke, and Springfield. The performance weaves together movement, music, dance, and stories in Arabic, Swahili, Nepali, Spanish, and English.

Maxine Lyle
Step Show: The Musical Co-Presented with Jacob’s Pillow
MASS MoCA, North Adams
Saturday, Dec. 9 at 8 p.m.
Initially developed at MASS MoCA in 2021, Maxine Lyle’s new work Step Show: The Musical is a two-act theatrical production, currently in progress, that showcases African American step dance and its role in Black college life. Infusing body percussion with hip-hop, R&B, and soul, this intergenerational coming-of-age story takes a riveting ride through the world of step dance and its imprint on Black culture.

Mutts Gone Nuts: Santa Paws
The Colonial Theatre, Pittsfield
Sunday, Dec. 10 at 2 and 5 p.m.
Experience holiday delight with Mutts Gone Nuts: Santa Paws, a heartwarming and action-packed dog spectacular featuring eight world class stunt dogs. From humble shelter beginnings to showbiz stardom, these amazing mutts will unleash havoc and hilarity on stage, leaving the audience howling for more. This family-friendly show is a festive frenzy of fur, fun and fabulous entertainment, complete with classic holiday music and an abundance of good cheer.

The Hoosac Valley Train Tinseliner
Departs from the Adams Station at 4 Hoosac Street, Adams
Saturdays and Sundays, Dec. 9 – 17
Here’s a super fun Berkshire County excursion for train lovers. Santa will be visiting the Berkshires again this year and will hop onboard the vintage Hoosac Valley Train Tinseliner for Christmas carols and good cheer.

Pop-up shops

Greenfield Holiday Pop-up Market
The Pushkin Gallery, Greenfield
Friday, Dec. 8 from 4 – 8 p.m.
Saturday Dec. 9 from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sun Dec. 10 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Immerse yourself in the holiday spirit with over 30 talented crafters showcasing unique treasures. Enjoy the festive vibes with live music as you find one-of-a-kind gifts and support our community.

Northampton Market Walk
Various Locations throughout Downtown Northampton
Saturday, Dec. 9

Here’s your chance to go to the first ever Northampton Holiday Market Walk. There are four different craft fairs participating this year, all highlighting local artisans. Attendees that visit all four will receive a fun surprise.

Western Mass Makers Market
Northampton Center for the Arts from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Curated Craft
The Dirty Truth, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Lowbrow Craft Fair
First Churches from 1q a.m. – 5 p.m.

Queer Winter Makers Market
The Majestic Saloon from 12 p.m.– 5 p.m.

The Plant Connector Pittsfield Pop-up Shop
64 North Street, Pittsfield
Wednesdays – Saturdays from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sundays from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
The Plant Connector’s main store is in North Adams. This season, Plant Connector co-owners Bonnie Marks and Emilee Yawn decided to send some green love down to Pittsfield. The pop-up shop largely replicates their much-loved North County store with an assortment of plants, home decor, and events. The pop-up shop will be open through Dec. 30.

Holiday Pop-up Shop
Tower Square, Springfield
Tuesdays through Thursdays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Work in downtown Springfield? Reserve some time during your lunch break to go to this lovely and conveniently located pop-up. The presenters are excited about their lineup of vendors including Mama Life Oils and Wellness, Bev's Patchwork, Outside The Box, Jewelry by Patricia Turshmann, Bear Butter, Gourd Birdhouses by Terry, The Proud Peacock and many others.