Fourth Annual Faerie Festival
Best So Far for North Adams Event
By: Charles Giuliano - Jun 16, 2019
Arriving mid afternoon we had to find a place to park.
Now in its fourth season the annual Berkshire Mountains Faerie Festival, on Saturday, June 15, was a huge success. The event held on the North Adams Fair Grounds entailed many activities for kids of all ages. There were numerous crafts vendors as well as a varied menu for fun food. Under the shed people gathered for a full schedule of performances.
There was a dance floor in front of the stage. We enjoyed watching toddlers inventively moving to the beat of a percussion duo. One little guy was charging about with great energy. He would trip and come crashing down now and then. With remarkable energy and resilience he bounded back up and kept on grooving.
One little girl seemed daunted by it all. She mostly stood and watched while another girl about the same age kept stealing her magic wand. An attentive mother kept jumping in to sort out any potential bad feelings.
An older girl, with a tall pointed hat, was remarkably inventive. Her movement, entailing elaborate twirls, evoked a future dancer and choreographer. There was the breathtaking sense that a star was born before our eyes.
The arts are so important to our lives and it is essential that they start with toddlers. This, gloriously, was just such an occasion.
We wandered about noting the many activities. Rolling small balls of clay kids were pressing them into the rough bark of the wishing tree. There was a variety of hand made stamps to press into them. These icons evoked a vast range of magical spells.
Kids gathered for story telling or to sit with the queen holding court.
This time the activities tents were spread about rather than all bunched up. That encouraged circulation. There were games and treasure hunts that encouraged this sense of exploring and adventure.
One tent was super busy with kids decorating faerie wings. At just five dollars they were selling like hot cakes. We enjoyed the spectacle of lots and lots of little faeries and elves. Most were small and adorable but we also interacted with some adult faeries and elves.
In some instances the costumes were quite elaborate. We spoke with an exotic bluebird. She explained that the handmade outfit, with a lot of intriguing detail, gets more elaborate each year.
It was comforting yet again to encounter the usual suspects, our friends and neighbors, creating this wonderful event. Planning goes on year round and gets real intense leading up to the day.
One unpredictable variable is keeping an eye on the weather. On this occasion it was cloudy and in the mid 70’s. It rained during the week but the beat up field was reasonably dry. During setup wind was an issue. By showtime all was well.
With great enthusiasm a suitably attired Faerie organizer told us that for the first time there was a line and packed parking lot when the fanciful gate opened at 10 AM. Events continued until 10 PM with more adult oriented entertainment. By then most of the little faeries and elves were fast asleep. No doubt utterly pooped.
We departed around 5 PM. We would have stayed for more of the performances but there was an art opening in Pittsfield at the Whitney Center for our artist friends Dawn Nelson and Melanie Mowinski “The Art of Nonfigurative Narrative.” It;s quit wonderful so check it out.
During the summer season you need seven league boots and faerie wings to keep up with all of the events.
One is amazed by the dedication and stamina of the organizers. There are the days of setup and then a twelve hour shift to keep the show running smoothly. Many volunteers make that possible.
Our friend the elf is recovering from a bad back. He had a sit down job driving around on a golf cart. Today is Father’s Day and I asked how he will be celebrating.
Not really was the reply. “We have to start breaking down and storing things for next year.” Not long from now planning for the charitable event will begin again.
Asked is he were pleased with this year’s turnout he nodded a weary head. Then scooted off to tend to business.
The best fun is imagining all those little toddlers slipping off to dream land with vivid dreams of faeries and elves. When you wish upon a star wonderful things do indeed come true.