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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

BHS Doctor Honored As 2017 Community Clinician of the Year
10:49PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

WALTHAM, Mass. — Berkshire Health Systems physician Dr. Linda F. Smothers has been honored by her physician peers of the Berkshire District Medical Society as the district’s 2017 Community Clinician of the Year, an award recognizing her professionalism and contributions as a physician. She received the award at the district’s annual meeting last month at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Pittsfield.

Board-certified in adult psychiatry, Dr. Smothers is the medical director of Acute Care Services of Berkshire Health Systems and The Brien Center for Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, a community-based, non-profit agency providing care for children, adolescents, adults and


BCC Phi Theta Kappa Scholars Honored at State House Ceremony
09:55PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

BOSTON, Mass. ─ Two Berkshire Community College students were honored by the Massachusetts Community Colleges Executive Office at a ceremony at the Massachusetts State House on March  30.

Cheryl Bassett and Mary Mick were among a small group of scholars honored as the highest academic achievers of the community colleges system and were presented with medallions and certificates for being named to Phi Theta Kappa’s All-Massachusetts Academic Team.

Every year, MCCEO hosts this event at the State House in Boston to showcase the best and brightest of the 15 college system. The event is co-sponsored by Phi Theta Kappa, the international honor society for community colleges, the

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Inauguration 2016
by Soapbox 02:00PM / Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Kids 4 Harmony Provided The Music At The Inauguration Reception
by Soapbox 08:38PM / Monday, January 06, 2014

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow
by Soapbox 04:10PM / Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Cultural Pittsfield This Week: April 14-20
09:38PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017


April 14 - April 20,


The Independent Investor: Tense Times in Trumpland
By Bill Schmick,
04:56PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017
The geopolitical landscape is heating up. U.S. relations with Syria, North Korea, China and Russia are in turmoil as the Trump administration flexes its military muscle. None of it bodes well for the stock market.   War cries and wealth are like water and oil. They don't mix well. For investors, there are far too many unknowns, especially when U.S. warships are steaming toward the Korean Peninsula. In Syria, American troops were spotted alongside Jordanian Special Forces troops along the border, despite our president's assurances that boots on the ground are out of the question. Actually, that isn't quite true, since U.S. Special Forces have been operating alongside our


Pittsfield City Council Supports Capitol Marquee Restoration
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:30PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council is supportive of efforts to restore the historic Capitol marquee outside of the Senior Center.    The 1928 marquee is structurally failing and Barry Architects has estimated it will take $142,030 to fully restore it. The city is considering allocating $50,000 from federal Community Development Block Grant funds and funding the rest through the capital budget.    "It is dangerous," said Ward 4 Councilor Christopher Connell. "It isn't just throwing up some light bulbs and some tar on top of the roof. The whole thing is deteriorating structurally."    A City Council subcommittee strongly urged


Easter Events Around Berkshire County
02:12PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

Hippity, hoppety, Easter is on the way - and so are plenty of holiday events around Berkshire County.

Got more to add to this list? Just email us at


Saturday, April 8

* Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum, Walker Street, Lenox, 10 a.m-noon and 1-3 p.m.: The mansion will present its annual Slavic Easter egg decorating demonstrations and instructional workshops. Lenox resident Tjasa Sprague, who will again lead the workshop, learned the technique many years ago from her Czechoslovakian mother, Maria Krofta. The fee for each workshop, which includes all materials, is $35. Children should be at least 12 years of age.


Sunday, April 9

* Adams Youth


Holiday Hours: Patriots Day
12:07PM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

Monday, April 17, is Patriots Day, a state holiday marking the anniversary of the Battle of Lexington and Concord that began the American Revolution. The day has been celebrated on the third Monday in April since 1969.

It was on the morning of April 20, 1775, that Paul Revere and other riders began the alert across and beyond Massachusetts Colony that troops were planning to advance from Boston to the towns of Lexington and Concord. They were to seize a cache of gunpowder and arms and capture revolutionaries Sam Adams and John Hancock.

(Local legend claims that Israel Bissell, later of Hinsdale, rode all the way to Philadelphia, but most historians dismiss it.)

Previous attempts to


Pittsfield Residents Oppose School Budget Cuts at Public Hearing
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:59AM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

Ava Mungin got roaring applause for her comments in defense of the work the paraprofessionals do for the students. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Ava Mungin is who children come to when they need help.   When they are hungry, they go to Mungin. When they are sick, they go to Mungin. When they want to get off drugs, they go to Mungin.    "I've given them hope I've given them a sense of self-worth and confidence.I do this every day," Mungin said.   She is a special education paraprofessional at Pittsfield High School and most recently she's been working with a student who can't speak, but is able to walk and use crosswalks because of


Berkshire Athenaeum Honors Retired Director Ron Latham
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:25AM / Thursday, April 13, 2017

The portrait was unveiled by Trustee Chairman John Murphy, Latham, and Friends of the Berkshire Athenaeum President Amy Chin. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Libraries have changed a lot in 24 years.    They have gone from having large card catalogs to find the book with the information the patron needs, later adding desktop computers, to now being able to check out wireless hotspot times, iPads, hands-on learning tools for children, a telescope, to a 3D printer.   You can even eat and drink in one portion of the library. But, shhh! You still have to keep your voice down.   At the Berkshire Athenaeum, all of that transition was made under the leadership of Ronald Latham,

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Haas Foundation Grants 10K For Manufacturing Scholarships at Taconic
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:37PM / Wednesday, April 12, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Taconic High School manufacturing students will now have an easier time pursuing careers thanks to the Gene Haas Foundation.   The Haas Foundation is granting the program $10,000 to provide scholarships to graduates. The foundation was started with a $20 million donation by the owner of Haas Automation, a company that builds manufacturing machines.   "We make anything that makes something else. If it cuts metal, wood, plastic, glass, ceramic, our machines can handle it. Our machines are used very widely in the workforce, which is perfect for schools. It gives schools the ability to teach what an actual shop environment is," said sales advocate


Pittsfield Councilor Suggests Shrinking Size Of City Council
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:33PM / Wednesday, April 12, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — In the 1960s and 1970s, the city had close to 60,000 residents. It's now closer to 40,000.   That's led Ward 4 Councilor Christopher Connell to toss out the idea of shrinking the size of the City Council. Connell filed a petition asking to start a process to reduce two of the four at-large seats on the council. He says that could save the city some $50,000 and still provide adequate representation.    "We would still have a ward council representing each area of the city and two backup councilors at large," Connell said.   The council would be composed of the seven ward seats and two at-large councilors. Between the stipends of

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Don't Get Swayed by These Investment 'Myths'
Submitted by Edward Jones,
12:00PM / Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Over time, you will run into various suggestions for investing successfully. Yet upon closer inspection, many of these ideas turn out to be "myths" – which could cause you trouble if you treat them as solid advice.

Here are five of these myths, along with some reasons for ignoring them:

* You can find the next "big thing." All of us probably wish we could have "gotten in on the ground floor" of Apple or Microsoft or some other tremendously profitable company. And who knows? There may indeed be a similar other business out there, waiting to take off. But it's almost impossible for anyone to identify these potential "blockbusters."


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