by Darcie Sosa
They say that creativity fills the soul, and with so many cultural and creative spaces in the Berkshires, there is plenty of creativity on display. But what if instead of watching, you want to be the one creating? Luckily for you, the Berkshires provides residents and visitors not only the opportunity to view different creative arts but to actually learn and participate in them. Year-round there is a host of great classes being offered to fit everyone’s taste and budget.
IS183 is a local non-profit community art school that encourages people of all ages, means and skill levels to enrich their lives through hands-on experience in the visual arts. This fall they are offering classes from Williamstown to Stockbridge including Easy Intro to Painting, Intro to Screenprinting, The Potter’s Wheel (where both new and experienced potters will learn everything from basic wheel usage to multiple glazing techniques.) and Multi-Media Sculpture where students will construct of 3D objects, figurative or abstract, using materials and tools like wire, wood, wax, cardboard, fabric, tin, and there will even be the option of working with plaster. All of IS183’s classes are open to the public at all skill levels and available for children and adults, which means everyone can get in on the fun!
The Berkshire Museum, located in downtown Pittsfield, hosts a creative class on select Saturday mornings, each month, year-round called Learner’s Lab. For the price of admission to the museum, you can take classes include such diverse topics as knife skills, beekeeping and maple sugaring, beer making and coffee brewing, holiday baking, Halloween makeup applications and even how to book bind. It doesn’t get much more creatively diverse than that.
If you want to move, then look into the Families Dance Together program offered by Jacob’s Pillow starting in July. A fun chance to learn dance and spend time together.
Are you looking to take a class but also want to have a fun night out? Look no further than Berkshire Paint and Sip in Pittsfield. Classes are held most days other than Monday and Tuesday and are open to the public. You can also book private parties for you and your friends. The cost of admission includes all paint and supplies, but make sure to bring your favorite wine with you!
If you’re a community-minded, down-to-earth type of person, the Berkshire Co-Op Market in Great Barrington offers a wide-range of classes for both adults and children. Kids cooking classes take place nearly every Saturday morning, and they also offer a range of DIY Kids classes throughout the year. Be sure to also look into their Shopper’s Workshops on topics including home canning, vertical farming, home heating efficiency and healthy shopping. Learn more by visiting their event calendar.
Whatever your skill set and whatever your taste, all over the Berkshires there are continuous classes and programs that can help you to develop a new skill or hobby and keep your creative brain happy. Just one of the many reasons life is calling in the Berkshires.
Darcie Sosa is a Berkshire marketing/PR professional, who when isn’t working loves being outside hiking with her dogs, going to live music and theatre shows, networking, trying new restaurants and volunteering for local nonprofits. She is an alumni of Berkshire Community College, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, and University of Massachusetts, Amherst.