Think historic homes are just for the grown-ups? Think again. The Trustees, MA’s largest conservation and preservation non-profit, opens the doors of its historic homes for free on one special day each year, called Home Sweet Home. This open house day is filled with programming geared towards the littles, their parents and all the way up their grands and greats!
This year, that day is Saturday, May 19th, and the theme is ‘The Art of the Garden: Inspiration Grows Here,’ so expect the day to be filled with garden-related crafts, programs and activities, from a children’s gardening and planting activities to seed crafts, author and horticulturalist tours and talks, both inside the homes and out on their grounds.
The Trustees has completed extension restorations to their public gardens at properties statewide over the past several years, providing a setting of beautiful, designed and natural gardens and landscapes for parents and other grown-ups to enjoy, while offering tons of room for the kids to run, or toddle! The historic homes range from the Colonial era to the Modern Movement, and many are the former homes of notable figures in regional and national history, like the Cranes, the Emersons and the Hawthornes, to name but a few.
A little more on what parents can expect on Home Sweet Home day:
Home Sweet Home Day at Fruitlands Museum in Harvard will offer historic games, a scavenger hunt, Shaker seed packet crafts, gallery talks, guided hikes, and more. Castle Hill on the Crane Estate in Ipswich will have a garden eye spy, a children’s flower arranging station, artists painting in the gardens, house and garden tours and the public opening of a (kid-friendly) outdoor, site-specific contemporary art installation from renowned artist Alicja Kwade, the third installation in The Trustees Art & the Landscape initiative. The Stevens-Coolidge Place in North Andover will have kite-making, house and garden tours and the launch weekend of the Traveling Biergarten with Salem’s Notch Brewing, a family friendly pop-up beer garden series that will take place at Trustees parks, farms and cultural sites this spring through fall, with a roster of over 30 events for the year. The William Cullen Bryant Homestead in Cummington will host a 19th-century style children’s garden launch and tours of the 1840’s barn and house. The Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate in Canton is home to Ruby the llama, will offer crafts for kids and, for their garden-enthusiast parents, a talk by renowned author and artist, Andrew Keys Pepper, at 10:30AM featuring “Top 10 Underused Plants for Spring Gardens in the Northeast.” Pepper will discuss his top picks in beautiful but underused spring plants for our region, revisiting some old favorites that have fallen out of fashion, as well as touching on newer introductions that deserve attention.
The Mission House in Stockbridge and The Ashley House in Sheffield.
Home Sweet Home is free to all and takes place Saturday, May 19 from 10AM-4PM at 10 Trustees historic sites. Visit www.thetrustees.org/homesweethome for more details.