Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
1000 West Columbus Avenue, Springfield, MA (413) 781-6500 www.hoophall.com
One of the world’s most beloved sports is lovingly enshrined at the 80,000 sq. ft. Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Fans of the sport can see its history come alive with a series of interactive exhibits and rare artifacts. Springfield native Dr. James Naismith’s first concept of the sport involved a peach basket, and its subsequent evolution is detailed, step-by-step. Guests can shoot baskets, play virtual reality and video games, try their hand at being a sportscaster, test their trivia knowledge and so much more.
Yankee Candle Company
Routes 5 & 10, South Deerfield, MA (413) 665-2929 / (877) 636-7707 www.yankeecandle.com
More than 2 million people visit Yankee Candle Company’s flagship store in South Deerfield each year. The Scenter of New England will delight candle lovers everywhere with more than 160 scents to choose from in their Sampler Emporium. New additions include Wax Works, an interactive feature where guests can make their own jar candles, wax hand sculptures and more, the Perscentality board, which allows visitors to see which scents are bound to appeal to them, based on their personality traits, and the Fragrance Mixology section, where shoppers learn how to create their own custom wax blend.
The whole family will also enjoy the magic of the Bavarian Christmas Village, which includes the Black Forest, the Village Square with its quaint shops, the Nutcracker Castle and Santa’s Toy Factory. Other delights include Kringle Market, the animatronic Candle Mountain Boys at the Candle Mountain Lodge and the Candlemaking Museum. Fine dining is just steps away at Chandler’s Restaurant, “New England’s Most Fulfilling Dining Experience” (New York Post), for award-winning cuisine and unequaled New England hospitality.
Six Flags New England
1623 Main Street, Agawam, MA (877) 4-SIX FLAGS www.sixflags.com
Six Flags New England launched its 11th coaster this season with the debut of the tallest inverted boomerang coaster in the world – Goliath. A coaster of epic proportions, Goliath is the “must ride” experience of the summer. Located in the Crack Axle Canyon of the park across from the all-new JB’s Smokehouse Barbeque restaurant, Goliath has forever changed the landscape of Six Flags New England.
The Big E / Eastern States Exposition
1305 Memorial Avenue, West Springfield, MA 413-737-2443 www.thebige.com
The Big E, New England’s largest Fair, takes place every autumn on the grounds of West Springfield’s Eastern States Exposition. For 17 days, attendees stroll the 175-acre grounds and enjoy world-class performers, agricultural exhibitions and competitions, horse shows, an authentic Mardi Gras parade, a big-top circus, a wide array of foods and shopping options, and so much more. When the Fair leaves town, the grounds host more than 100 annual shows including craft, collectibles, horse, dog, hobby, home, sporting, and trade, drawing more than 800,000 people. Storrowton Village Museum is open for public tours from June through August and offers, tours and programs for school groups.
CityStage / Symphony Hall
One Columbus Center / Court Street, Springfield, MA Business Office: (413) 788-7646 / Box Office: (413) 788-7033 www.citystage.symphonyhall.com
Pioneer Valley residents can enjoy Broadway-style theater, top concerts and performances and internationally-recognized speakers at CityStage and Symphony Hall. Together, both venues make Springfield shine as a destination for live theater. The 2,611-seat Symphony Hall was built in the early 1900s and recently underwent an extensive renovation. CityStage, Springfield’s professional, not-for-profit theater, presents off-Broadway comedies, dramas and musicals from October through April in the intimate, 487-seat Blake Theatre; while the 70-seat Winifred Arms Theatre is host to numerous community events, performances and meetings.