Amherst Community Information

Local Education

Amherst's youth population is served by the schools of Amherst Regional Public Schools. Currently, approximately 4,000 students are enrolled in the district, which includes three elementary schools located within town limits, as well as one middle school and one high school. An additional elementary school is located in the town of Pelham. The town of Amherst is also the home of Amherst College, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Hampshire College. Other local colleges that are around a 25 mile radius from the heart of Amherst include Smith College, Mount Holyoke College, Western New England College, Springfield College, and Westfield State College.

Local Economy

According to the town's Open Space and Recreation Plan (2009), over half of the labor force in Amherst is employed by Amherst College, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Hampshire College. Other industries that serve as economic mainstays in Amherst include food and accommodation; retail services; and entertainment. In addition to the colleges, Big Y Supermarket, Center for Extended Care at Amherst, and Atkins Country Farm Market, among others, are some of the town's other major employers.

Areas of Interest

In addition to being a politically active town, Amherst is also considered a highly literary town. Several authors, playwrights, poets and humorists have called Amherst home, including Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Noah Webster, Helen Hunt Jackson, and Robert Francis, to name a few. Naturally, a few sites of interest in town include museums and libraries that are either named after or are focused on some of Amherst's writers, such as the Dickinson Homesteads, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, The Jones Library, and the National Yiddish Book Center. For those who would like to pay their respects to Emily Dickinson, the famed American poet is buried at West Cemetery on Triangle Street. Other areas of interest include the Amherst Cinema Arts Center, Amherst College Museum of Natural History, Theodore Baird Residence, The Horse Caves at Mount Norwottuck in Mount Holyoke Range State Park, and Amherst's own downtown district.

Parks and Recreation

Here in Amherst, land conservation is one of the town's number one priorities to ensure a better future for the town, the land, and for residents. Through a number of concerted efforts and on-going projects, the town has been able to make upgrades to the community's' parks and recreational areas with little to no disruption to the land. As a result, residents and visitors can now enjoy the many amenities available at the Orchard Arboretum Conservation Area, Larch Hill Conservation Area, Kendrick Park, Groff Park, Kiwanis Park, Mill River Recreation Area, and Plum Brook Recreation Area. Several accessible trails are located throughout Amherst as well: the Kevin Flood Trail, Puffers Path, Kevin Chase Dimock Trail, and the Orchard Arboretum Trail. Golfers can enjoy a round or two of their favorite game at Amherst's own Cherry Hill Golf Course. Billed as "a course for everyone", Cherry Hill Golf Course is wonderful for both duffers and semi-pros and features fantastic views of the local scenery.

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