My parents took me out to Stockbridge, Mass yesterday to have lunch at the Red Lion Inn and to see the Norman Rockwell Museum. The Red Lion is kind of a landmark around here; it’s been a vacation spot for a long time and is actually featured in some of Rockwell’s paintings. It’s a large old white building in the middle of Stockbridge that looks more like a huge house than a hotel.
My picture here is more of my parents than it is of the building, so use your imagination. There are rocking chairs on the porch and rickety screen doors leading to the carpeted inside where there is a sitting room in the lobby filled with old sofas and other ornate furniture. We ate in the Tavern rather than the main dining room so as not to be so fancy. Lunch was still pretty upscale considering most of the time for lunch I eat tuna fish and crackers in my cubicle at work. I had a delicious Pilgrim Sandwich which is homemade wheat bread piled high with turkey breast, stuffing and a cranberry mayonnaise. My mom had a Field Greens Salad with cranberries and walnuts and my dad had a Chicken Caesar with lemon and anchovies dressing (not whole fish, just the flavor).
We headed off to the Norman Rockwell Museum after that which is about a mile and a half down the road. The picture here is of his studio which they actually cut in half and moved to the site where the museum is. Rockwell lived around Vermont and Massachusetts in his later life (he was born in New York City) and a lot of the people and scenes he paints are from my neck of the woods. Rockwell was employed with the Saturday Evening Post for a long period of time and pained over 300 covers for them. They had a whole room dedicated to his magazine covers which were fun to look at. He also painted the Four Freedoms after a speech by President Roosevelt, which famously depicts Freedom of Speech, Freedom to Worship, Freedom from Want and Freedom from Fear. Rockwell tried to give these paintings to the government, and when they turned him down the Post ran them inside the magazine. People all over called the Post asking for prints and the government decided to take Rockwell up on his offer after all. These paintings were seen all across the country and with the purchase of a War Bond you got a free set of prints; Rockwell helped raise over a million dollars for the war effort. Stockbridge itself is a very charming little town and as we walked along the sidewalk my mom pointed out all of the charm oozing from each quaint New England house. For those of you who know about the song Alice’s Restaurant by Arlo Guthrie, it is an actual restaurant in this town, but now it’s called Theresa’s.
Today is Saturday and to wrap up the week the family is getting together for my mom’s final concert with the Pioneer Valley Orchestra for the season; they will start up again in September. It should be a really nice way to end the week here at home. Until next time America. ~Sarah