Closed Easter Sunday
Apr 21 all-day
Ghost Hunt – A Spirited Evening
Apr 27 @ 7:00 pm – 11:45 pm

Join David Raby for a paranormal investigation of the historic and haunted Ventfort Hall.  A non-fiction author and paranormal investigator, Raby has always been intrigued by history. He undauntedly enters haunted locations that would terrify others with hopes of contacting lingering spirits to discover why they remain.

Raby is the author of four published books and countless online articles. With his passion for the paranormal field, he has accumulated over a decade of experience, founded a paranormal group and has helped many people (and spirits) that ranged between the curious and those seeking urgent advice.

His interest in the paranormal was shaped by the fact that spirits seem to be attracted to his compassion and openness. He has a knack for storytelling that fuels his intensive historical research and fact finding.

He believes that by bringing people’s stories out of the shadows and into the light of our awareness, they may find eternal rest and peace.

Before the investigation, he will give a brief history of the lives that once graced the hallways – and possibly still reside within. He will also share some of his favorite evidence from previous investigations and will be happy to answer any questions about paranormal investigations. This event is perfect for everyone; from someone who has never been on a paranormal investigation to the seasoned investigator.

The event will begin at 7:00 p.m. and concludes at midnight. Tickets for this exciting event are $35 per person. All of the proceeds from ticket sales will go towards the preservation and restoration of Ventfort Hall. Call us at (413) 637-3206 for reservations.

Closing at noon today for a private event.
May 11 @ 12:00 pm

Closing at noon today for a private event.

Ye Olde Ventfort Tag Sale
May 25 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Saturday, May 25th from 10 am to 3 pm
Come to our giant one-day Tag Sale, organized and donated solely by members of the program committee, volunteers and board of directors of Ventfort Hall. What could be more appropriate than a one-day tag sale of cast-offs that could become valued treasures for you, you and you! “Rich the treasure, Sweet the pleasure” John Dryden (1631 – 1700).  Only at historic Ventfort Hall — the Berkshires other sweet pleasure!

Nejaime’s Wine Tasting
Jun 1 @ 5:30 pm

A Spring Journey in Loire Valley, Burgundy and Rhone

French wine specialist, Christian Dalbavie of Kobrand, will take you on a journey around three major French wine regions to tease you with nine different wines to discover or rediscover.

First Flight: the Roses:
Bouvet rose, Loire Valley
Jadot rose 2018, Burgundy
La Nerthe rose 2017, Rhone Valley

Second Flight: the Whites:
Redde Pouilly Fume 2016, Loire Valley
Jadot Bourgogne Blanc 2017, Burgundy
La Nerthe Chateuneuf du Pape White 2016, Rhone Valley

Third Flight: the Reds:
Jadot Pinot Noir 2015, Burgundy
La Nerthe Cote du Rhone Village 2015, Rhone Valley
La Nerthe  Chateuneuf du Pape red 2015, Rhone Valley

Gourmet charcuterie, cheese and bread will be included in the tasting. Cost to attend is $35 per person. Optional tour of Ventfort Hall for $15 before wine event; 4:30pm start. Call Nejaime’s for reservations at 413-637-2221.

Closed All Day Today for a Private Event
Jun 2 all-day
Drop in Yoga at the Mansion Saturday Mornings at 8am
Jun 8 @ 8:00 am – 9:00 am

Join Susan Shook, a yoga practitioner, at an all level yoga class here at the mansion on Saturday mornings beginning June 8. The class will be held on our south veranda and, weather permitting, south lawn. Greet the day with the birdsong, warming sun, and yoga!

Susan has been a yoga practitioner for over 16 years, culminating in 2018 with certification as a yoga instructor, graduating from the Yoga Institute Of The Berkshires. She is also member of the Yoga Alliance.

Susan’s practice and classes are focused on linking purposeful movement with intention and breath. Her classes incorporate the restorative sounds and scents of nature and center on playful, safe and grounded guidance with instruction for all levels of yogis. Susan encourages friends and students to appreciate themselves by sharing time on the mat, motion, and breath.  At the close of her classes, experience the calm and rest of Shavasana.

When not on the mat: teaching or practicing yoga, you will find Susan beautifying a client’s landscape, running or hiking in the woods with her  loving Labradors Buddha & Elvis. She is a native of the Berkshires, a business owner/partner, avid yogi practitioner and teacher, sharing her practice and teaching at Lenox Yoga and Ventfort Hall.

Cost to attend is $15.00 a session, cash or check payable that day. Part of the cost is a donation to Ventfort Hall.

Tea & Talk – “Chateau Higginson: Social Life in Boston’s Back Bay, 1870 – 1920”
Jun 11 @ 4:00 pm

Former Boston Globe reporter and Pittsfield native Margo Miller will kick off our Summer 2019 series of Tea & Talks on Tuesdays with the subject of her new book Chateau Higginson: Social Life in Boston’s Back Bay, 1870 – 1920.  She will make her visual presentation on Tuesday, June 11 at 4:00 pm followed by a Victorian tea.

Miller will center on Henry Lee Higginson (1834- 1919), founder of the Boston Symphony Orchestra in 1881 and creator of the Hotel Agassiz in 1874, “America’s first real apartment building,” among other major accomplishments.  Family members, friends, the tastes, culture, economics, architecture, society, public health and early transportation issues, recreations, sports and entertainments of the day create a full picture of the times. Insights into the planning of the Back Bay area and even its geological aspects are given the author’s attention.

Hotel Agassiz, inspired by upper-class apartment living in Europe, sometimes called “French flats,” was also known as “Chateau Higginson.” His partner in its development and his brother-in-law was Alexander Agassiz, the prominent scientist and engineer.

Miller has tied Higginson to each chapter in a city that held to its old-guard, close-knit relationships, including chapters on “Entertainment,” “Horses” and “Outdoors.” Higginson was an equestrian who hated the appearance of bicycles, while Frank W. Weston, the architect who designed the Hotel Agassiz, is known as “the father of American bicycling.”

A footnote: The author resides at Hotel Agassiz on Commonwealth Avenue, a multi-floor building possessing condominiums.

The Summer 2019 series of fourteen Tea & Talks are sponsored by Ventfort Hall board member Lucille Landa and William Landa.

Cost to attend the Miller talk are $28 for advance reservations and $32 day of the event.  Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited.  For reservations call us at 413-637-3206.

Tea & Talk – “Egyptomania”
Jun 18 @ 4:00 pm

Our summer series of Tea & Talks continue with Dr. Bob Brier (“Mr. Mummy”), recognized as a foremost Egyptologist, who will examine the fascination with the ancient world along the Nile River.  He will cover the events that fanned the flames of “Egytomania” during the last two centuries in his visual presentation on Tuesday, June 18 at 4:00 pm.  A Victorian tea will follow his talk.

What were these events? There were Napoleon’s Egyptian campaign that led to a new decorative arts trend, the Suez Canal Big Dig and the carting of gigantic obelisks to Paris, London and New York. Brier states perhaps the greatest boost to Egyptomania was Howard Carter’s discovery and opening of Tutankhamen’s intact tomb. Later, in the 1970s, traveling exhibitions of the boy-king’s treasures kept the momentum going.

Brier will also discuss why Victorians were especially interested in ancient Egypt and will present many images of the collectibles that the fasciation inspired, from a beautiful Wedgwood Egyptian tea service to mechanical lead pencils in the shapes of mummies and coffins.

As Senior Research Fellow at the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, Brier conducts pioneering research in mummification practices and has investigated some of the world’s most famous mummies, including King Tut, Vladimir Lenin, Ramses the Great, Eva Peron and the Medici family of Renaissance Italy.

In 1994, Brier became the first person in 2,000 years to mummify a human cadaver using the exact techniques of the ancient Egyptians.  This research was the subject of a National Geographic TV special titled “Mr. Mummy.”

The speaker was the host of several award-winning television specials, including “Pyramids, Mummies & Tombs” and “Mummy Detective.” National Geographic TV presented his research in a documentary called “Secret of the Great Pyramid,” discussing a new theory of how the Great Pyramid of Giza was built.  His research has been featured on such media venues as CNN, 60 Minutes and in the The New York Times.  His most recent book is Cleopatra’s Needles: The Lost Obelisks of Egypt. (Bloomsbury, 2016).

The Summer 2019 series of fourteen Tea & Talks are sponsored by Ventfort Hall board member Lucille Landa and William Landa.

Cost to attend the Brier’s talk are $28 for advance reservations and $32 day of the event.  Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited.  For reservations call us at 413-637-3206.

Tea & Talk – “The Tragic Story of the Majestic Normandie Ocean Liner”
Jun 25 @ 4:00 pm

Author Richard René Silvin returns to the mansion to present a Tea & Talk on the subject of his latest book, Normandie, the Tragic Story of the Most Majestic Ocean Liner. He will make his visual presentation on Tuesday, June 25 at 4:00 pm.  Following will be a Victorian tea during which the speaker will autograph copies of his book.

His father was French and his mother was American. With lasting memories of crossing the Atlantic as a child accompanying his parents on such splendid ocean liners as Ile de France, the Queen Elizabeth and even the last completed crossing of the Andrea Doria, Silvin focuses on the French Line’s most glorious and glamorous flagship that first set sail from Le Havre on May 29, 1935.  Normandie died an inglorious death by fire at a New York dock on the Hudson River on February 10, 1942, two months after Pearl Harbor and with war ravaging in Europe.

Silvin introduces us to his book by stating, “The story of Normandie’s demise affected me deeply as a young child. I read as much as I could about her life and death. I studied her deck plans and craved hearing anyone’s stories about their crossing aboard her…I used to boast that, even though I had never set foot on Normandie, I could give tours of all her astonishing public rooms and many of her private suites.”

Silvin, who resides in Palm Beach, Florida, maintains a particularly active interest in historic preservation as vice-chairman of the Palm Beach Landmarks Preservation Commission.  He is the author of Noblesse Oblige, the Duchess of Windsor as I Knew Her, the subject of his lecture at Ventfort Hall last year.  He is also the author of I Survived Swiss Boarding Schools: An Arc to Triumph and Villa Mizner: The House That Changed Palm Beach.

The summer 2019 series of fourteen Tea & Talks are sponsored by Ventfort Hall board member Lucille Landa and William Landa.

Cost to attend the Silvin talk are $28 for advance reservations and $32 day of the event.  Reservations are highly recommended as seating is limited.  For reservations call us at 413-637-3206.