October 2016

Not So Empty

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It seems to me that Andy Sauer’s typically perceptive Suffield Observations column suffered in September from a lack of familiarity with what really happens on the Suffield Town Green. He said that except for the Farmers’ Market and Suffield on the Green, the place is “mostly a flourish of the Suffield landscape.” Andy did admit to “the occasional event.”

My daily activities regularly take me past the green, and I think that “occasional events” are more frequent than he implies. When someone wants to schedule a happening, large or small, the green is often the location of choice – especially the bandstand, which is an easily described specific spot to gather. Summer concerts by the Parks & Rec Department and the Around Town Singers have attracted large crowds. I’ve observed or attended vigils, balloon releases, and Easter egg hunts. Events have been sponsored by the churches that face the green, such as the blessing of the animals by the First Church and frolics by young children from the pre-schools in both churches.

A group of long-distance cyclists depart from the green each year for the Pan-Mass Challenge, and a well-attended walk in support of a brain cancer survivor has started and ended twice there now. I’m sure there are many other events in addition to the casual walkers and those who come to review the names on the Soldier’s Monument, to use the water fountain, or just to sit on one of the benches and rest a moment.

Of course there could be more community events on the green, but it is certainly not, for most of the year “just another landmark for people driving through town.”


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