Springfield is located at the juncture of the east-west Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) and north-south I-91.
Bradley International (tel. 203/627-3000; airport code BDL), in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, is the nearest major airport, about 20 miles to the south. Rent a car here from any of the major companies, or catch a bus, cab, or limo into Springfield. Major airlines serving Bradley include American (tel. 800/433-7300), Continental (tel. 800/525-3273), Delta (tel. 800/221-1212), Northwest (tel. 800/225-2525), United (tel. 800/864-8331), and US Airways (tel. 800/428-4322).
Three lines of Amtrak (tel. 800/USA-RAIL; www.amtrak.com) trains stop in Springfield: the Lake Shore Limited running between Boston and Chicago; the Regional between Boston and Washington, D.C.; and the Vermonter between St. Albans, Vermont (where there are connecting buses from Montreal), and D.C.
The Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau (tel. 800/723-1548; www.valleyvisitor.com) has downloadable maps of Springfield and other nearby cities at its website. There are visitor centers downtown, at 1441 Main St., Springfield, MA 01103 (tel. 413/787-1548), and near the Basketball Hall of Fame, at 1200 W. Columbus Ave. (tel. 413/750-2980). They offer brochures, maps, and discount tickets to local attractions.
During the last 2 weeks in September, "The Big E" -- the Eastern States Exposition (tel. 413/737-2443; www.thebige.com) is held on a fairground on the opposite side of the Connecticut River in West Springfield. It's a huge old-fashioned agricultural fair with a 4-H horse show, ox pulling, carnival food such as deep-fried cheesecake, games, a midway, and entertainment from the likes of Joan Jett and Josh Turner. Also on the grounds is Storrowton Village, an authentic re-creation of a 19th-century village. It's open from late June through Labor Day, Tuesday through Saturday 11am to 3pm.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.