Happy Birthday, Hadley

This year is my hometown’s 350th anniversary, and today is the HUGE celebratory parade. It promises to be the hugest parade Hadley has ever had with 18 bands, 26 floats, and an $80,000 budget. I’m stuck at work, and feeling kind of grateful for an excuse to opt out. I kind of loathe militaristic parades from my days in the high school marching band. I satisfied my curiosity by altering my commute this morning. At T-minus 1.5 hrs, Route 9 was lined with lawn chairs, balloon and snack vendors, signs for residential parking fees (two bros were charging $10/car!), and stray band kids, presumably walking to Burger King for breakfast. I wish Hadley would have used $80,000 for something a little less lame…

Hey, I’m trying to stay positive, this community raised me. So here are some of my favorite things about Hadley:

– Hadley “Grass” (asparagus) and sweet corn – abundant in the summer
– The Montgomery Rose Greenhouses – lit to an orange-y glow at night, spectacular in the wintertime
The Porter-Phelps-Huntington House Museum – supposedly haunted; The sunken garden is where I want to get married if I decide to get married
The Norwottuck Rail Trail – especially the lattice truss bridge over the Connecticut River where “EB U R THE 1 4 ME” is tagged
The Hadley Salvation Army store – impressive size, selection, and organization
– Frequent hot air balloon sightings – once one landed in our backyard! I was at soccer practice
– Mt. Warner pond – I fell asleep to the sound of crickets and bullfrogs
The Food Bank Farm – amazing cutting flower garden, great cause
Flayvors of Cook Farm and The North Hadley Sugar Shack – local maple syrup (get Grade B! I learned my lesson) and maple syrup ice cream
Moody Bridge Road – protected as conservation area under the leadership of Keith’s boss
Hadley Garden Center – Indeed, “Everything You Need To Make Your Garden Grow”
Lakeside PYO Strawberries – one of the fields borders on our property, and my sister still sneaks out for berries after dark


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