Easthampton ready for second WinterFest Saturday to benefit Nashawannuck Pond

Last modified: Thursday, February 19, 2015

EASTHAMPTON — WinterFest will bring a host of activities and demonstrations to Easthampton on Saturday to raise awareness and support for Nashawannuck Pond.

For its second year, the festival will deliver 14 events to nine venues across the city, including a pancake breakfast at Trinity Lutheran Church at 2 Clark St. from 8 to 11 a.m., crafts for children at the Easthampton Council on Aging, ice demonstrations, a chili cook-off fundraiser and the screening of an educational movie about the pond.

Families can get outside together in any of the three nature walks scheduled at the Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary at 127 Combs Road. Departing at 10:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., the 45-minute hikes will guide participants in looking for signs of wildlife, identify plans and take a look at a Native American toothbrush.

Liz Provo, a member of the Nashawannuck Pond Steering Committee and one of the organizers of the event said another highlight is the chili-cook off. This year, Puza’s Pure Foods Market of Southampton will be defending its title of best chili, decided last year by a group of about 150 people. At Eastworks Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., people can purchase a ballot for $5 and taste-test chili made by Pure Foods, Riff’s Joint, Glendale Grill, Silver Spoon and Nini’s Ristorante.

“People take their chili very seriously in Easthampton,” Provo remarked.

Also at Eastworks at 116 Pleasant St., Historian Dennis Picard will demonstrate ice-harvesting using historical tools. Provo said that at one point Massachusetts, and specifically Easthampton, were an important part of the forgotten industry.

“He’s a man that’s not afraid of being out in the cold in the winter,” Provo said of Picard.

The day will conclude with a bonfire tended by former mayor Michael Tautznik at 3:45 p.m. in the Municipal Building parking lot at 50 Payson Ave. Provo said the baton will be passed to Easthampton City Arts+ for its Fire and Ice Art Walk at 5 p.m., when fire performers will show their tricks to the crowd.

For a complete listing of events and times visit www.nashawannuckpond.org.

Chris Lindahl can be reached at clindahl@gazettenet.com.


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