Interesting Ways to Spend the Break

Most of us are eagerly looking forward to the rest and relaxation we hope to enjoy over fall break. But for students who are not going home over the long weekend, those anticipated days of freedom can turn into long hours of boredom. To preempt this unfortunate turn of events, we are providing you with a list of exciting activities taking place in the town of Amherst over the long weekend.

On Saturday, come support our local scholars at the annual ABC (A Better Chance) Fall Foliage Walk! ABC is a program that draws students out of underserved public schools and brings them to great public and private high schools (like Amherst Regional High School) around the country. Their Fall Foliage Walk is the most significant fundraiser they have all year — you can get involved by signing up to walk or run, or else just stop by to participate in some fun activities and see some awesome performances. The Walk takes place in Amherst Common and lasts all day. While you’re at Amherst Common, don’t forget to stop by the weekly Farmer’s market (from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.) for some delicious local treats.

On Sunday, you can drop by The Black Sheep to grab some lunch and listen to the Gypsy Wranglers. This group puts a special twist on jazz, blending the music of the Gypsy Jazz, Cowboy Swing, French Musette, Big Band and New Orleans Jazz traditions. The Gypsy Wranglers will be playing from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m..

Get back into your academic mindset on Monday by attending a keynote address at UMass on biochar. The keynote will be delivered by Frances Moore Lappé, an environmentalist and author of 18 books including the popular Diet for a Small Planet. Lappé will be discussing the soil conditioner “biochar” and its role as a local carbon negative energy source. There will also be a delicious dinner available, featuring local ingredients. The dinner and keynote take place from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Student Union Ballroom and the Campus Center Auditorium, respectively.

Treat yourself to a relaxing Tuesday before heading back to class with a visit to the Mead Art Museum. The museum has recently expanded, placing many pieces on view for the first time, including an ancient Roman sarcophagus, prints by Dürer, Delacroix and Hopper and contemporary pieces by Will Barnet, Vik Muniz and Michael Huey. The Mead special exhibition “To Be at the Farther Edge: Photographs Along the New England Trail,” by Barbara Bosworth, is still on display, as well! The Mead’s hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., so you have plenty of chances to stop by.

Enjoy your break everyone!