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The Berkshires

From Academic Kids

The Berkshires are a branch of the Appalachian Mountains in Western Massachusetts. often referred to as the "Berkshire Hills," although Massachusetts residents frequently refer to them as mountains.

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Geology

Over half a billion years ago Africa collided with North America, pushing up the Appalachian Mountains and forming the Taconic bedrock of the Berkshires. Erosion over hundreds of mllions of years wore these mountains down to the hills that we see today. See also: Taconic orogeny.

Ecology

Today efforts are being made on behalf of many organizations to preserve these mountains for human enjoyment. The Housatonic River is a popular area for trout fishing, and the area's relative pristineness contributes to the popularity of nature walks in the region.

Sightseeing

The Berkshires are a popular tourist attraction and vacation getaway, serving the same function in relation to the Commonwealth that the Catskills do in New York and the Poconos for Pennsylvania. With numerous trails, including part of the Appalachian Trail, large tracts of wilderness, and the non-profit Berkshire Botanical Garden and Hebert Arboretum the Berkshires are very popular with nature lovers.

The Chapin Library offers a wide selection of rare books and documents for display. The Norman Rockwell Museum, Clark Art Institute, Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MassMoCA), and Williams College Museum of Art (WCMA) comprise the region's diverse selection of art museums. The area is also home to numerous summer stock theatre festivals, such as the Williamstown Theatre Festival (Williamstown), Berkshire Theatre Festival (Stockbridge), Shakespeare and Company (Lenox), and also hosts a regional dance company, Jacob's Pillow.

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The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Capital:

Boston

Regions:

The Berkshires | Greater Boston | Cape Cod | North Shore | Pioneer Valley | South Shore | Western Massachusetts

Cities:

Attleboro | Boston | Brockton | Cambridge | Chicopee | Fall River | Fitchburg | Gardner | Holyoke | Lawrence | Lowell | New Bedford | Northampton | Pittsfield | Salem | Springfield | Taunton | Westfield | Worcester

Towns:

Abington | Acton | Acushnet | Adams | Alford | Amherst | Andover | Aquinnah | Arlington | Ashburnham | Ashby | Ashfield | Ashland | Athol | Auburn | Avon | Ayer | Barre | Becket | Bedford | Belchertown | Bellingham | Belmont | Berkley | Berlin | Bernardston | Billerica | Blackstone | Blandford | Bolton | Bourne | Boxboro | Boxford | Boylston | Braintree | Brewster | Bridgewater | Brimfield | Brookfield | Brookline | Buckland | Burlington | Canton | Carver | Chilmark | Cohasset | Cummington | Dartmouth | Dedham | Dighton | Dover | Duxbury | East Bridgewater | Easton | Edgartown | Fairhaven | Florida | Foxborough | Freetown | Halifax | Hanover | Hanson | Hingham | Holbrook | Hopedale | Hull | Kingston | Lakeville | Mansfield | Marion | Marshfield | Mattapoisett | Medfield | Medway | Mendon | Middleborough | Milford | Millis | Millville | Milton | Needham | Norfolk | North Attleborough | Norton | Norwell | Norwood | Oak Bluffs | Pembroke | Peru | Plainville | Plymouth | Plympton | Randolph | Raynham | Rehoboth | Rochester | Rockland | Scituate | Seekonk | Sharon | Somerset | Stoughton | Swansea | Tisbury | Walpole | Wareham | Wellesley | West Bridgewater | West Tisbury | Westport | Westwood | Weymouth | Whitman | Wrentham |

Counties:

Barnstable | Berkshire | Bristol | Dukes | Essex | Franklin | Hampden | Hampshire | Middlesex | Nantucket | Norfolk | Plymouth | Suffolk | Worcester

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