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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

The Independent Investor: If You Are Laid Off, Read This
By Bill Schmick,
06:39PM / Thursday, April 30, 2020
As of the end of April, more than 30 million Americans have joined the ranks of the unemployed. Companies have closed, while the pandemic has forced many employees to remain at home. If you are one of the jobless victims of this pandemic, here is some advice on your next steps you might take.   First off, do not panic. If there was ever a time for this to happen, it is now. The federal government has provided you with a list of additional benefits that can help you through this unfortunate period. But the first things you want to know is will there be a severance package? If there is, the amount of  money you receive will most likely be determined on your length of employment. It

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May Is Mental Health Month; Time to Maintain 'Connection' During Pandemic
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:30PM / Thursday, April 30, 2020
BOSTON — You do not hear much about the up side of a global pandemic, but Gov. Charlie Baker on Thursday was able to inject a note of levity into his daily COVID-19 update.   "I've tried for years to get my three kids to read books — wildly unsuccessfully," Baker said. "My daughter and a friend of hers [recently] decided to start a book club because it would give the two of them plus a number of their friends a reason to chat every night, something to talk about.   "They have now been reading books for a couple of weeks, talking every single night about what they're reading in the books they've got. They even asked me what I would

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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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Cultural Pittsfield This Week: April 30-May 7
05:20PM / Thursday, April 30, 2020

 

While we all do what we can to stop the spread of Covid-19, Cultural Pittsfield will offer weekly guides featuring online events and information. If you are a Pittsfield business and would like your event listed, please email cultural@pittsfieldch.com. Thank you and be well!  

  RESOURCES   Please visit the City of Pittsfield's COVID-19 webpage for updates and helpful resources. 1Berkshire has also compiled a list of online sites where you can find information on a number of topics. Plus... NEW Council on Aging Brown

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'Sullivan's Travels': Goes First Class
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
04:19PM / Thursday, April 30, 2020

I wish that I were reviewing one of the half-dozen movies certain to be made when this pox upon our house is no more. But until that glorious return to normality has us resuming all the simple joys of life we take for granted, like going to the movies, I'll be retro-reviewing and thereby sharing with you the films that I've come to treasure over the years, most of which can probably be retrieved from one of the movie streaming services. It is my fondest hope that I've barely put a dent into this trove when they let the likes of me back into the

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Big Y Appoints Sheffield Woman as New Marketing Leader
12:09PM / Thursday, April 30, 2020

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Big Y Foods has appointed Sarah Steven of Sheffield as senior director of marketing. 

In this new capacity, Steven will oversee all aspects of marketing across the company’s brands of Big Y World Class Markets, Big Y Express Gas and Convenience, Fresh Acres specialty market and Table & Vine wines and spirits. As such, she will lead the marketing team to further develop the brand's digital initiatives, including programming to support the launch of e-commerce. Her work on the brand will ensure that Big Y continues to grow its customer base within existing markets as it expands to new regions in Massachusetts and Connecticut.

"I am excited

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Barrington Stage Postpones Part of 2020 Summer Season
11:27AM / Thursday, April 30, 2020

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Barrington Stage is postponing its previously announced 2020 season until the summer of 2021 but is moving forward with late-summer and fall productions with new procedures in place.

"We think there is a strong need to do an alternate season that honors live theater, that allows us to assemble safely and reminds us we are not alone in this self-isolated world we find ourselves in," Artistic Director Julianne Boyd said in an email to supporters. "We want to give you a safe place where you can experience wonderful stories and music and for a few short hours transport you to a different world."

In the Boyd-Quinson Mainstage theater, Barrington

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Pittsfield Accepts TIF Agreement With John's Building Supply
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
01:18AM / Thursday, April 30, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council has accepted a tax incentive agreement with Johns Building Supply, which wants to expand its business.   After some months of volleying the item between committees, the council took action Tuesday and accepted the tax incremental financing agreement that will aid the Crane Avenue building supply company to construct a new building.   "The TIF looked great. These are local business owners who are dedicated to the city and who want to improve their business," Councilor at Large Earl Persip said.    With the proposed Ashuwillticook Rail Trail extension into Pittsfield, the 70-year-old company plans to move its office from

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Polito, Baker Discuss How 'Reopening' Board Will Function
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:33PM / Wednesday, April 29, 2020
BOSTON — One day after naming an advisory board to develop a phased approach for reopening the commonwealth, state officials provided some insight into how they see that board operating.   At Wednesday's press availability, Gov. Charlie Baker was asked whether he was concerned that the 17-person panel chaired by Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito might not have a wide enough cross section of the commonwealth's economy.   Polito explained that the members of the advisory board will be conduits for information.   "For instance, if you are a restaurant owner, you would navigate to the representative on the board who has that experience level," Polito said. "We

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Community Preservation Funds Approved for Housing Relief
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
10:23AM / Wednesday, April 29, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Community Preservation Committee on Monday approved the use of more than $100,000 to help bolster emergency home security funds.   The Community Preservation Act, adopted by the city several years ago, allows the collection of a property tax surcharge that is partially matched by the state for preservation, recreation and housing needs.  The committee has voted to set aside $110,000 to help support households during the COVID-19 pandemic that may be just over the median income.   "I am glad the CPA has this capability," Chairman John Dickson said. "Certainly at this time when everyone is talking about different approaches if we can

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Pittsfield City Council Approve COVID-19 CDBG Funding
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
04:01AM / Wednesday, April 29, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The City Council on Tuesday amended its Community Development Block Grant to turn funds toward COVID-19 relief and recovery pursuits.   The amendment would allocate $789,382 in CDBG funds through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act toward the city’s $1.1 million relief and recovery fund.    "I believe the city's economic recovery is a crucial element of our COVID-19 response," Ward 5 Councilor Patrick Kavey said. "The administration has put together this package and what we are approving tonight is the first component."    This $789,382 will be apportioned into four different

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Greylock Federal Has Made $23 Million in Payroll Protection Loans
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
04:28PM / Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Bryan and Teresa Cadran, who now own the company started by his father, were able to bring back two laid-off workers and will be able hire a third for an open position.  PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Repro Systems has been making signs and graphics for commercial and personal use for 40 years. But when the pandemic hit, the family business saw its workflow drop by 75 percent.    "I think it was like the domino effect," said Bryan Cadran, who runs the business with his wife, Teresa, and a few employees. "First the building community and then the graphics, so as some businesses closed or stayed at home, our production just dropped — just like a light

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Baker Extends Non-Essential Business Closure Order through May 18
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
12:39PM / Tuesday, April 28, 2020
BOSTON — Gov. Charlie Baker announced on Tuesday that he is extending the order to close non-essential businesses in the commonwealth through at least May 18 and creating an advisory panel to develop plans for a phased reopening of the commonwealth's economy.   Baker also extended to May 18 the ban on public gatherings of 10 or more people, which, like the non-essential business order, was to have ended next Monday.   Although the commonwealth has seen a plateau in the metrics used to study the COVID-19 pandemic, it has not seen a decrease in those measures, Baker said. And until those numbers start to come down, it is not appropriate to talk

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