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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Tickets Go On Sale May 20 For 'Full Tilt Boogie'
02:01PM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015

POWNAL, Vt. — "The Full Tilt Boogie" will kick off in rockin’ style as the first event this summer at Green Mountain Live on Saturday, Aug. 22.

Tickets go on sale May 20 at 9 a.m. through Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000 or online.

Legendary Texas rockers ZZ Top and contemporary blues rock guitar slinger Gary Clark Jr. co-headline the festival, which also includes world-renowned and emerging artists Buddy Guy, Blackberry Smoke, The Marshall Tucker Band, Trigger Hippy, The Wood Brothers, Albert Lee, Girls Guns & Glory and many more.

Produced by TTM, UMT PRESENTS and Green Mountain Live, The Full Tilt Boogie is one full day and night of great artists sharing their

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Berkshire Festival of Women Writers Offering Weekend Memoir Retreat for Women Writers
01:31PM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015

LENOX, Mass. — The Berkshire Festival of Women Writers is hosting “Writing the Journey of Your Life” from June 5-7 at the Rookwood Inn.  

The weekend retreat, with commuter and residency options, is the first of a series of three writing retreats for women planned at Rookwood Inn.

Led by Jennifer Browdy, Ph.D., founding director of the BFWW, professor of literature and writing at Bard College at Simon’s Rock and a memoirist herself, the retreat will provide structure and support for the woman memoirist in any stage of her writing journey, from working with the initial concept to fine-tuning the details and narrative arc. There will be opportunities for both

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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

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Miss Hallís School Presents 'The Government Inspector'
11:12AM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Miss Hall's School in Pittsfield will present 'The Government Inspector' this weekend.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Miss Hall’s School Theater Ensemble will present Nicolai Gogol’s satirical Russian comedy "The Government Inspector" in performances at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, May 15, 8 p.m. on Saturday, May 16, and a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, May 17.

In Gogol’s tale, the governor and corrupt local officials of a small Russian community plan to cover up their misdeeds before the anticipated arrival of a government inspector, who will most likely arrive in disguise. When they learn that a mysterious stranger has already arrived in

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Nobody Wants To Serve On Lanesborough School Committee
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
10:25AM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Apparently only Chairwoman Regina DiLego is willing to serve on the School Committee.   The two other seats with her on the committee are up for election but no one took out nomination papers. The nominations to be placed on the annual election ballot were due Tuesday, leaving those seats to be filled by write-ins or future appointments.   Robert Barton, whose term doesn't expire until 2016,  said he is resigning from the committee and Jim Moriarty said he will not seek re-election. Whoever is appointed or elected via write-ins for Barton's seat will finish out the final year in his term before being back up for election. The other seat is

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Lanesborough Selectmen Vote To Short Mount Greylock Budget Request
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:41AM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015
School Committee members Richard Cohen and Carolyn Greene tried to convince the Board of Selectmen to fund the entire request. LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Board of Selectmen will not support Mount Greylock Regional School District's decision to add $42,100 back into the budget for late buses and team meetings.   The Selectmen voted to recommend an appropriation of $2,710,155, which is just short of $16,000 from the school's request. The assessment is $86,974, or 3.32 percent, over last year and is the figure Town Administrator Paul Sieloff built his budget around when presented at the public hearing.   The budget process started with Sieloff telling school

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Pittsfield Council Wants Detailed Expenses For 100 North Move
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:18AM / Wednesday, May 13, 2015
The City Council wants to know the financial impacts of moving the inspections departments to 100 North St., a move the mayor did administratively and without consulting the council last year. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Moving the inspection services to 100 North St. had to come with some one-time costs, and Councilor at Large Barry Clairmont wants an itemized list of them for future budgeting.   The City Council was unanimous in calling on Mayor Daniel Bianchi to provide written accounts of all expenditures relating to the move.   With the final bills just now being tallied and budget season coming up, now is the perfect time for the council to know where that money came

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Sorrell Takes Over As Lanesborough's Acting Police Chief
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
09:56PM / Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Timothy Sorrell was appointed acting police chief on Monday night. LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Timothy Sorrell will take over police operations Wednesday.   On Monday night, the Board of Selectmen appointed Sorrell the acting chief as of midnight Tuesday night.   Current Chief Mark Bashara will use vacation time and stay on payroll until Friday, May 29, and then enter retirement.   "Today's Mark [Bashara's] last day," said Town Administrator Paul Sieloff. "He'll still be on the payroll but the day-to-day operations will be in the hands of Tim Sorrell."   Sieloff said Bashara was willing to part with the job as soon as the Board of

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Pittsfield Police Honor Fallen Officers at Annual Ceremony
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:22PM / Monday, May 11, 2015
The annual ceremony was held Monday morning. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Hattiesburg, Miss., Police Officers Benjamin Deen and Liquori Tate were shot and killed during a traffic stop on Saturday night.   They are the most recent of more than 20,000 law enforcement officers who have died or were killed while on duty.    While Mississippi is far from Pittsfield, the Berkshires are not immune to loss.   Five officers related to Pittsfield have paid the "ultimate sacrifice": Capt. Michael Leonard, in 1898; Jailer James Fuller, 1901; Secret Service Operative William Craig, 1902; Officer Leo Sullivan, 1956; and Officer Timothy Shepard,

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Alzheimer's Education Series Returns to Elder Services on May 12
12:28PM / Monday, May 11, 2015

PITTSFIELD, Mass. - Elder Services of Berkshire County, in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association, will present a six-part caregiver education series on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.  

The dates are May 12, 19, and 26, and June 2, 9, and 16.  All sessions are from 2 to 4 p.m.  

Sessions 1, 2, 4 and 6 will be facilitated by Marcia McKenzie, M. Ed., Manager, Western Massachusetts Alzheimer’s Association, and Roberta “Bobbi” Orsi, MS, RN, CCP.  These sessions include:

1.“The Basics of Dementia,” addressing normal aging vs. dementia, related disorders, how to obtain a diagnosis and how to talk to your

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Fire Destroys Pittsfield Storage Shed
Staff Reports,
12:03PM / Monday, May 11, 2015
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A storage shed was destroyed Sunday after a refuse fire was left unattended.   According to Deputy Fire Chief Steven Peaslee, a 25-foot by 12-foot storage shed is a total loss at 275 Highland Ave. The shed stored a lawn mower, bicycle, outboard motor, construction materials and other household items and will cost an estimated $50,000 to replace, according to fire officials.

A smaller storage shed at 275 Highland and a garage next door at 279 Highland Ave. were damaged somewhat from exposure to the intense heat from the fire.

The cause is undetermined and the investigation is ongoing, according to Peaslee, however, the "probable cause is an unattended,

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Bianchi To Submit 2016 Pittsfield Budget By End of Month
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:28AM / Monday, May 11, 2015
Mayor Daniel Bianchi at a recent speaking event. He plans to submit his fiscal 2016 spending plan to the City Council before the end of May. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Mayor Daniel Bianchi is expecting to submit his $150 million fiscal 2016 spending plan by the end the month.   The mayor is suggesting a 1.9 percent increase in city operating expenses and a 3.5 percent increase to the schools. In total, the budget raises the city side by $1.4 million and the school by some $1.9 million for about a $3.4 million increase in total spending.   "It is the continuation of debt service and contractual obligations," Bianchi said on Friday.    The biggest drivers,

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Friends Group Formed To Improve Public Lands & Forests
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:21AM / Monday, May 11, 2015
Ryan Aylesworth formed a new non-profit organization to improve access to parks and open spaces in the Berkshires.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — There have been plenty of studies and press conferences touting the economic impact of local cultural institutions, all with the backdrop of the beautiful Berkshires.

But why can't the "beautiful Berkshires" be an economic driver as well?   Companies and politicians all see the benefits of investing in culture but some say not nearly the same level of emphasis is placed on open spaces, hiking trails, natural beauty, and outdoor recreation.   Ryan Aylesworth is hoping to change that.   The former president and CEO of

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