Julia & Billy

May 5, 2018

We are lucky enough to be getting married in Great Barrington, MA, in the heart of the Berkshires - an area that is world famous for its natural beauty, historic sites, cultural attractions, spectacular restaurants and shopping. A great getaway for both couples and families, we encourage anyone coming from out of town to make a weekend of it and experience everything the area has to offer. Below, we have highlighted a few of the attractions that draw in tourists from around the world - but this list only scratches the surface.

Please check out Berkshires.org for more info.

Arts, History and Culture

+ MassMOCA

Located about 30 minutes north of Great Barrington, in North Adams, MA, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MassMOCA) is a great museum featuring a stellar permanent collection of contemporary art as well as some amazing site-specific temporary installations. The Sol LeWitt exhibition is a personal favorite. Highly recommended.

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+ The Clark

Located in Williamstown, MA, about an hour north of Great Barrington, the Clark art museum features European and American paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, photographs, and decorative arts from the Renaissance to the early twentieth century. The collection is especially rich in French Impressionist and Academic paintings, British oil sketches, drawings, and silver, and the work of American artists Winslow Homer, George Inness, and John Singer Sargent.

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+ Norman Rockwell Museum

Founded in 1969 with the help of Norman and Molly Rockwell, the Norman Rockwell Museum is dedicated to the enjoyment and study of Rockwell’s work and his contributions to society, popular culture, and social commentary. The Museum houses the world’s largest and most significant collection of Rockwell’s work, including 998 original paintings and drawings.

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+ The Ashley House

The Ashley House tells the intertwined stories of the Ashleys and the enslaved African Americans who lived here in the 18th century.

Col. John Ashley built the house in 1735, and spent the next decades accumulating wealth and land. By the time of his death in 1802, Ashley owned more than 3,000 acres – including the land that is now The Trustees’ Bartholomew’s Cobble. Ashley supported the American Revolution, heading a committee that wrote the fiery Sheffield Resolves, a petition against British tyranny and manifesto for individual rights, in 1773. His financial success was based in part on the labor of five enslaved African Americans.

Inspired by Revolutionary-era rhetoric and her own desire for freedom, Mum Bett, who was enslaved in the Ashley House, helped end slavery in Massachusetts. In 1781, she sued Col. Ashley for her freedom – and won. Mum Bett was and remains an inspiration to all who learn her story.

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+ Hancock Shaker Village

Hancock Shaker Village is one of America’s finest and most authentic living-history museums and Shaker sites. Set on 750 acres of preserved farm, meadow and woodland in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, the museum’s 20 historic buildings, including the iconic Round Stone Barn, are located within a walkable 10-acre Village setting. HSV houses an impressive collection of original Shaker furniture, art, objects, tools, textiles and other artifacts.

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+ The Mount

The Mount is a National Historic Landmark and cultural center that celebrates the intellectual, artistic, and humanitarian legacy of Edith Wharton. It engages a diverse audience by providing context to Wharton’s life and achievements through its interpretive and public programs, and preservation of her historic estate.

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+ Naumkeag

Naumkeag is the former country estate of noted New York City lawyer Joseph Hodges Choate. The estate's centerpiece is a 44-room, Shingle Style country house designed principally by Stanford White of McKim, Mead & White, and constructed in 1886 and 1887.

The estate is noted for its large gardens, which were designed in the mid-20th century by noted landscape designer Fletcher Steele in conjunction with Choate's daughter Mabel.

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+ W.E.B. Du Bois National Historical Site

Born in Great Barrington, W.E.B. Du Bois was a great American humanist and visionary, one of the most influential and provocative voices in the 20th century. As a founder and leader of the NAACP and Pan African Congress, Du Bois dedicated his life to making a better future for all people.

Presently, visitors can experience a self-guided interpretive trail at the W.E.B. Du Bois Homesite in a rural setting two miles from downtown Great Barrington. The interpretive trail highlights Du Bois’s journey from Great Barrington to the world stage, information from ongoing archaeological excavations, as well as the Homesite dedication in 1969.

Visitors can also explore Du Bois’s legacy in the landscape of downtown Great Barrington. Take the W.E.B Du Bois in Great Barrington Walking Tour to learn about places and people important to Du Bois.

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Natural Attractions/Hiking

+ Monument Mountain

Ascend this popular peak, which once drew 19th-century literary giants, and from its summit gaze across the spectacular landscapes of the Housatonic River Valley.

Monument Mountain offers memorable views of the southern Berkshires and the broad Housatonic River Valley. Its geology is remarkable: the mountain is composed predominantly of pale quartzite, rising abruptly above the Housatonic wetlands and river valley.

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+ Mount Greylock

About 45 minutes north of Great Barrington, near the Vermont border, Mt. Greylock is the tallest peak in Massachusetts. There are miles and miles of hiking trails to choose from, and, at the peak, a spectacular view spanning 90 miles on a clear day.

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+Bartholomew's Cobble

Created by geologic upheavals when the Taconic and Berkshire ranges were formed, this hundred-foot-high bedrock outcropping introduces visitors to a rugged and exotic landscape that also supports 800 species of plants while offering terrific mountain vistas.

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Dining, Shopping and Entertainment

+ Barrington Brewery

The perfect place to grab a pub lunch or dinner, featuring the best beer around. Also the site of the wedding!

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+ Cafe Adam

A more upscale option, Cafe Adam has a new American menu featuring seasonal produce for an excellent night out. Located in the same plaza as Barrington Brewery.

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+ Marketplace Kitchen Table

Located across from the Fairfield Inn, it features an all day cafe with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Stop in for a coffee and pastry or sit down for an entire meal.

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+ Chez Nous

One of bride's family's favorite restaurants in the area, Chez Nous is a classic French bistro with amazing desserts and a great wine list that is worth the trip out of town.

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+ The Prairie Whale

If you're feeling homesick for Brooklyn, this is the spot for you. A hip New American bar and restaurant.

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+ Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center

The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington offers an exciting night out in the Berkshires. The beautiful historic theater offers music, dance, theater, opera, movies and family programs. Check the calendar for upcoming events.

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+ Triplex Cinema

4-screen movie house featuring independent films & first-run Hollywood hits, plus community events.

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+ Shopping

The area is well known for a variety of shops from small independent designers and craftsmen to contemporary art galleries to a plethora of antique and secondhand stores. There is a wonderful, walkable downtown in Great Barrington that makes for an excellent afternoon of shopping.