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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

The Independent Investor: One For The Little Guy
By Bill Schmick,
01:16PM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016

The retirement world is changing. A long-sought-after regulation by the Department of Labor was released in April. It goes a long way toward protecting retirement savers from brokers and insurance agents. Here is what you need to know.

The new ruling insists that those who advise investors on appropriate investments for their IRAs, 401(k)s and other tax-deferred savings plans must put the client’s interest above their own and the company they work for. In short, they must act as a “fiduciary” rather than simply recommend “appropriate” investments.

You see, an “appropriate” investment for someone with little investment experience might be an


The Classical 'High Season' Bursts On The Scene
By Stephen Dankner, Special to
12:15PM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016

It’s well known that the Berkshires and environs are a musical mecca for classical music lovers. With the upcoming tourist high season – from mid-June through October – concert activity increases exponentially, offering listeners a cornucopia of music to suit every taste.

Here’s a listing of three of the best-known series in the region and what to expect to hear, so you can make plans to experience the great music soon to be resounding within our resplendent hills and dales.

Tanglewood Music Festival

Tanglewood in Lenox, the world’s grandest and best outdoor summer music festival, is the summer home of the Boston Symphony. It offers performances from Friday,


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

Don’t Keep Family in the Dark About Your Plans
Submitted by Edward Jones,
11:00AM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016

You might work diligently at building a financial roadmap for your retirement years and a comprehensive estate plan. But you can’t just create these strategies – you also have to communicate them. Specifically, you need to inform your spouse and your grown children what you have in mind for the future – because the more they know, the fewer the surprises that await them down the road.

Let’s start with your spouse. Ideally, of course, you and your spouse should have already communicated about your respective ideas for retirement and have come to an agreement on the big issues, such as when you both plan to retire, where you’ll live during retirement, and what


Be Safe and Have Fun on Your Motorcycle
Sponsored Content,
10:43AM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Summer is finally arriving in the Berkshires, and with it come motorists on vehicles with fewer than four wheels.

Two- and three-wheeled motorcycles share the road with cars and trucks in the warmer months, and that means safety is the number one priority. All motorists are reminded to safely "share the road" with motorcycles and to be extra alert to help keep motorcyclists safe. And motorcyclists are reminded to make themselves visible to other motorists.

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration says motorcyclists have all the same rights and privileges as any motor vehicle driver on the roadway. During Motorcycle Safety Awareness


Developer Proposes Scaled Down Solar Project On Churchill Street
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:28AM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016

The Community Development Board added conditions to each solar project on Tuesday should each be approved by the Zoning Board of Appeals. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The developers of a recently denied solar array on Churchill Street have returned with a new concept, which they say is some 25 percent smaller.   Aegis Renewable Energy had proposed a 2.6 megawatt array on a portion of the 60-plus acre property on Churchill Street early this year.   But neighbors fought it, claiming such a commercial use would be detrimental to the residential area. The Zoning Board of Appeals agreed and denied the plan in a 3-2 vote.   Now Aegis has returned with a second application,


Flood Seeking Seat on Lanesborough Finance Committee
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
12:52AM / Wednesday, June 08, 2016
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Brodie Mountain Road resident Rebecca Flood feels it is time to give back to the community.   Flood is challenging two incumbents for a seat on the Finance Committee. She is a current financial analyst at General Dynamics in Pittsfield with a history of bank experience and she feels those skills will help with the town's finances.   "I just want to dig into the numbers and be realistic about things," Flood said. "What do we need and what don't we need?"   Flood's family was originally from Lanesborough but had moved to Pittsfield, where she was raised. Her family has all moved back and she and her husband built a


Pittsfield Moves Closer to Residency Requirement Ordinance
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
12:44AM / Tuesday, June 07, 2016

City Solicitor Richard Dohoney crafted an ordinance for a residency requirement and was willing to redraft it to conform with specific requests from the subcommittee.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A City Council subcommittee came close to recommending a residency requirement for all boards and commissions.

But, then the members voted to hold off for another month before taking a vote on the issue.

The Ordinance and Rules Committee debated the issue for an hour with the majority of the group in favor of such a requirement.   However, the language crafted by City Solicitor Richard Dohoney wasn't clear on whether the Pittsfield Economic Development Agency board would be


Soccer Domain Academy Offers Clinics, Tryouts
09:17PM / Monday, June 06, 2016
PITTSFIELD, Mass. - Soccer Domain Academy will hold free tryouts and clinics for all players aged between 3 and 18 to compete on its travel teams.   SDA, which competes in the New England Premiership, has been coaching in the Berkshires since 2005 and offers the chance for elite players to play in an academy.    After a successful spring season, SDA is increasing its academy teams and offering new players the chance to take part in free kickers (3-5) and juniors u5-7) clinics. The clinics start from June 7 and the tryouts from June 10.   To register for the programs and view the full schedule for the tryouts and clinics visit the Soccer Domain Academy website,


'Hoffmann Hackers' Golf Tournament Set for June 24
01:15PM / Monday, June 06, 2016

LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Hoffmann Bird Club of Western Massachusetts will host its fourth annual “Hoffmann Hackers Golf Classic,” which could otherwise be known as “The Longest Bird,” at the Donnybrook Country Club, 775 Williamstown Road on Friday, June 24, with a “shotgun start” at 4 p.m.

The public is welcome to participate.  The 9-hole golf tournament is a fundraiser for Berkshire County’s premier Ornithological Society.  There will be a rain date of July 1.

The entry fee for the event will be $40 per head, which includes placement on a team, 9 holes of golf, with carts included, and a barbeque/cook-out following the event.


NAMI Berkshire County Accepting Award Nominations
01:07PM / Monday, June 06, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Berkshire County is seeking award nominations for the 2016 Eunice Zorobo Awards, which will be presented during the organization’s annual meeting in September.

Following are the 2016 Euince Zorbo Award categories:

Member of the Year
This award recognizes a member as someone who contributes enthusiastically to NAMI Berkshire County’s activities in support of its mission to help families whose lives are affected by mental illness.

Citizen of the Year
This award is given to someone who has shown an understanding of mental illnesses and advocates for improvement in treatment of those who live with mental


Biz Briefs: Fairfield Inn & Suites Honored for Performance
12:13PM / Monday, June 06, 2016

What a performance: The Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott in Great Barrington has been presented with the Performance Award.

Receiving the Silver award the Fairfield Inn & Suites/Great Barrington is thrilled to share this remarkable achievement with the Marriott International and Fairfield Inn & Suites community as well as all of Great Barrington.

“Our dedicated team is making a difference by consistently putting the guests’ needs first, enabling them to make the most of their time in the Berkshires. We are very proud that the associates create an atmosphere that our visitors can call home,” said Patty Jordan, general manager.

In addition to the Silver


Berkshires Beat: Local Students Compete in Science Fair
11:58AM / Monday, June 06, 2016

Good job: Several middle schoolers from Berkshire County placed at the State Science and Engineering Fair at Worcester Technical High School on Saturday.

Noah Pereault from St. Agnes won a second place for his project, "The Sugar Situation."

Sydni Jamros, Nick Alibozek and Emily Godfrey from Hoosac got an honorable mention for "Hoverboard," as did BaRT student Fransisco Alicandri for "Which Alloy Conductors Conduct the Best?" and St. Agnes student Emma Kotelnick for "Do You See What I See?"

The Massachusetts Middle School Science & Engineering Fair is a forum for students in grades six through eight to explore "real world" science


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