Posts Tagged ‘Massachusetts’

Photopost: North River Wildlife Sanctuary

On Sunday, as a pre-birthday activity, my family & I visited the North River Wildlife Sanctuary in Marshfield, MA.  While the kids weren’t so into out (excepting the nature play area which was a lot of fun), the scenery was quite beautiful on a mid-Autumn afternoon. There were two loops to walk: one through Woodlands and one that circled a meadow and lead throught the phragmites to the North River itself.  Here’s a sampling of my best photographs from the outing.

Photopost: Connors Farm

This weekend we visited Connors Farm in Danvers. It wasn’t quite what expected, less farm and more amusement park with a loud band, a chainsaw artist, and massive crowds. The line for tickets wound through the farm stand and was quite confusing (NOTE: if anyone from Connors Farm reads this, consider setting up admissions sales tables/tents in the parking lot on busy days to make it easier to get the wristbands and easier to shop for farm products).

Once we settled in, it was a lot of fun.  Even the band, Psychedelic Relic, sounded pretty good. We tried to make our way through the corn maze but got really lost. Or not so much lost, as we kept circling back to the beginning and could not figure out how to advance further into the maze. The kids got frustrated and we decided to take a break, but we never made it back. No matter. We had a great time seeing the barnyard animals, watching the pig race, and playing on the horse swings, jumping pillows, and pedal carts among other things.  Then we picked two massive pumpkins to bring home.

Here are some nice photos of our day of autumnal pleasantries.

Beer Review: Cambridge Brewing Bo-Steam-Ian Lager

Beer: Bo-Steam-ian Lager
Brewer: Cambridge Brewing Company
Source: Draft
Rating: *** (7.6 of 10)
Comments: An interesting blend of beers bringing together the Czech pilsner with the California-style steam beer.  The beer has a rich golden color with a bit of haziness, but not much head. The aroma is an earthy bread crust.  The taste is reminiscent of sweet pasty but with a spicy, fruity tang. There’s just enough hops bitterness for balance, but not enough to overwhelm the beer. The beer has a medium mouthfeel and leaves behind a light lacing.  This is a well-crafted and tasty experiment.

Beer Review: Berkshire Hoosac Tunnel Amber

Beer: Hoosac Tunnel Amber
Brewer: Berkshire Brewing Company
Source: Draft
Rating: *** (7.1 of 10)

This amber ale is a comforting cloudy copper brown. The aromas include a biscuit scent with hints of fruit.  The taste is bready with a peppery finish and a sweet caramel aftertaste.  It’s a well-balanced brew that fills the mouth with flavor.  My kind of beer.

Beer Review: Night Shift Belafonte

Beer: Belafonte
BrewerNight Shift Brewing
Source: Draft
Rating: *** (7 of 10)
Comments: A hazy orange beer, with very little head.  The aroma is citrus fruit with a bit of earthy yeast.  The taste is tangy with spiciness and pepper flavor, balanced with sweet toffee.  The mouthfeel is light.  Overall this beer has a nice farmhouse aura to it.

Beer Review: Jack’s Abby Leisure Time

Beer: Leisure Time Lager
Brewer: Jack’s Abby Brewing
Source: 12 oz. bottle
Rating: ** (6.8 of 10)
Comments: This beer poured out is golden in color with a cloud hanging in the upper part of the glass resembling a jellyfish.  The aroma is a strong lemon citrus.   Flavor is a mix of bready sweetness, lemon, and spice.  The flavors are subtly bordering on bland.  It’s a pretty beer, good but basic.

From the same brewery:


Photopost: Green River Festival

Last weekend, the whole family headed west to Greenfield where we joined Susan’s cousins Bill & Kathleen for the Green River Festival.  Susan and I last attended this festival in 2003 and always intended to go back, because it is nice festival in a lovely setting.  Seeing a festival with kids is a big change as one goes from parking a blanket in front of the stage to listen intently to music, to running around with kids and maybe hearing a good band in the background.

Nevertheless, we did enjoy some great sets by the following artists:

  • Polaris, the band who provided the soundtrack to one of the best tv shows of the 1990s, The Adventures of Pete and Pete.
  • The Milk Carton Kids, a folk-pop duo in suits whose harmonies are reminiscent of the Everley Brothers and Simon & Garfunkel.
  • An amazing set by the versatile Booker T. Jones who played not only his own tunes like “Green Onions” but great covers of songs made famous by other artists ranging from Aretha Franklin to Prince.
  • Finished off the night with the bombastic tUnE-yArDs.  Kay danced and collected high fives from passersby.

The other great thing about the Green River Festival is that it has balloon rides.  At dusk, we took the kids down for a close-up view of the balloons as they were filled up with fans, heated up with a burner, and launched into the sky.

We spent the rest of the weekend at Kathleen and Bill’s house in Vermont where we played in the West River.


This great video shows the highlights of Saturday at the festival:

And this video gives one a virtual ride in a hot air balloon!


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