Photo by Salt Water New England

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Reader Question for the Community: What is in South Hadley besides Mount Holyoke College?


Reader question for the community:
What is in South Hadley besides Mount Holyoke College? My daughter will be attending this fall and I would like to learn about the area, thank you!


29 comments:

  1. Jesse LivbermoreMay 17, 2020 at 5:23 PM

    From what I'm told, besides the beautiful and important college, there's no there, there.

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    1. I enjoy the pictures, of course and I enjoy reading comments on them and the answers to some of the questions posed but I do really love the little nuggets posted occasionally and this is certainly one. Thanks

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    2. Well then, perhaps I don’t have to worry about distractions...

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    3. Unless you like colleges (Amherst, Hampshire, Smith, and UMass), and asparagus.

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  2. An amazing independent bookstore, The Odyssey.

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  3. Why would anybody want more than Mount Holyoke?

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    1. That’s what all the alumna say!

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  4. A bit north and west of South Hadley is worth a trip to the Esselon Cafe in Hadley for coffee, breakfast and (after the shut downs end) dinner. And there are wonderful places in Northampton for nearly everything: shopping, restaurants, the Smith College Museum and Lyman Arboretum Forbes Library and much more.

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    1. Thank you, I love a great independent coffee shop!

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  5. The Smith College Museum.

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    1. Yes, that collection is astounding!

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  6. shuttles to all the colleges in that area. they're pretty diverse. UMass gets larger events, concerts, Amherst College has a good archaeology museum and interesting restaurants, for example. A lot of great state parks and forests in that area if she likes the outdoors, good but hilly cycling. Also farms and farmers' markets.

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    1. We will take advantage of the hiking trails and farmers markets!

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  7. As both my daughter and I are Hampshire alums I can unequivocally say that there is a lot of there there.

    All five colleges offer museums of some sort. They also offer concerts, theater and dance performances. There are several notable bookstores in the Five College area. The Pioneer Valley boasts some decent restaurants. Amherst is the home of Emily Dickinson. There are abundant nature trails and parks in the area. The bus system is free for students with multiple stops at the five schools. Most importantly, let’s not forget that students can take classes at all five of the colleges.

    There’s a lot more there than just apples and asparagus.

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    1. Thank you very much, I appreciate your points!

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  8. My daughter graduated from UMass/College of Nursing. She had a wonderful time and got a great education which she is using today (as you might imagine). Amherst has many wonderful attractions including the Emily Dickinson house. My daughter did all the typical campus activities (football games, clubs, volunteer organizations) and we (her family) would take her to visit organic farms, go hiking, browse all the wonderful shops and eat at many excellent restaurants. The area is VERY RURAL but has a reliable bus system. Besides UMass and Holyoke, there are Hampshire, Smith and Amherst in the vicinity and if you are a student at any of them you can take classes at any of the colleges. The only downside is all of the colleges seem to have graduations on the same weekend in May which means the traffic is insane and you MUST reserve a hotel room at least one year in advance.

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    1. Please approach with caution. You would be hard-pressed to find a Pioneer Valley rĂ©sident who considers their neighborhood “VERY RURAL.”

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    2. We live in a small town in Massachusetts and love small town life, so rural, or very rural is what we enjoy, and we loved the campus and area when we visited. This is one of the reasons my daughter chose MHC, because she feels at home there. Small shops and good restaurants which are a short drive make a visit all the more fun! Thank you both so much!

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  9. Eric Carle Museum, Smith College Art Museum, Smith College garden and greenhouse tours, Adkins Farm, the town of Northampton is a busy, vibrant walking shopping center for all the 5 colleges, with non-franchise, hip stores, they do have a Starbucks though. Enjoy! It is beautiful and lots of alumni love it!

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  10. One of my favorite places in the world is the Historic Deerfield Museum..similar to Old Sturbridge--but less commercial and more rural with hauntingly beautiful late 17th and early 18th century houses. Also in the middle of the Historic Village is the charming Deerfield Inn. The Village is about thirty or so miles north on I-91 from South Hadley. Perhaps a place for an outing with visiting parents. Check its web page https://www.historic-deerfield.org

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    1. What a wonderful suggestion, thank you very much!

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    2. Deerfield is magical. A charming step back in time. It’s like the Brigadoon of Massachusetts. My husband and I took our daughter there during a Parents Weekend.

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  11. There are some great hidden gem restaurants in the Pioneer River Valley / Rt. 2 corridor. All of these places are a bit north of the Hadley / Amherst region, but absolutely worth the ride... especially as small rural restaurants will need all the support they can get when they reopen.

    Take a look at The Blue Heron in Sunderland, The Gill Tavern in Gill (my favorite - in the former general store on what must be one of the smallest town greens in New England), The Five Eyed Fox in Turners Falls, and Hope & Olive in Greenfield... and slightly more corporate, but as an alternative to the overwhelming Yankee Candle store and restaurant, the Farm Table at Kringle Candle Co in Bernardston. All special, cultivated local spots supporting local farms / breweries with great food and drink... and very much in keeping w/ SWNE pursuit of authenticity and quality.

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    1. Thank you so very much for all the restaurant suggestions, I can’t wait until we can check them out! I went to The Blue Heron quite a few years ago, and had a wonderful brunch there with my children, so thanks for the reminder! And I used to drive through Gill on my way back to New York to visit family upstate, so I will have to stop there as well as Turners Falls.

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  12. Be aware that many of the college consortium related suggestions here may not be available this coming fall. My son is a grad and works at Amherst and so much is still up in the air.

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    1. Yes, as an entering first year, she will be on campus, and I am just praying that everything will be normal with no remote learning. She has already lost so much being a graduating senior, that all she wants is to be on that campus in August for the pre-season! She hopes to take a few courses in the Consortium down the road! Thank you

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  13. Amherst, at least, intends to make their plans for the coming academic year known in June.

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