Berkshire Grown supports farms and local food across the county with resources for local farmers, orchards, farm stands and farm-to-table restaurants, and its own farmers markets in the fall and winter in Great Barrington and Williamstown.

They bring a holiday farmers market every year, in November and December, when the harvest is in and the fields are ploughed under. I often play with the contradance jam at the Williamstown market, and I launching into a high note while kids run around a circle of chairs and their parents trade off to look for ingredients for their holiday meal.

A small boy is dancing to East Tennessee Blues and the Reel de San Antoine on a ripping fiddle. The accordian player slides into another key, and the group follows him grinning into another Quebeçois dance tune. He is also a beekeeper — more than one of this group have grown their own harvest, and they are playing among local cheeses, maple syrup, winter squashes and locally roasted coffee.

I remember the long room filled end to end with winter greens and sweet potatoes, honey and hot cider. This is the time of year when the farmers markets swing from weekly to monthly, and many of them quiet down until spring — but the the Downtown Pittsfield Farmers Market, North Adams Farmers Market and Bennington Farmers’ Market hang in there.

When the days get dark by tea-time, there’s something friendly and welcome in a room full of people who grow what they grow here, and make what they make here, and people who want to know about them — or feel like a hot cup of coffee to the tune of the Ice House and Cold Frosty Morning.

BTW Berkshires