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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Berkshires Beat: OLLI Opens Spring Classes
12:58PM / Monday, January 16, 2017

Lifelong learning: OLLI, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Berkshire Community College, kicks off its winter semester of classes this month in Pittsfield and Great Barrington. OLLI is a membership organization that offers over 80 classes, talks, workshops, events and trips a year, designed especially by and for people 50 years old and up.

There is no educational requirement for joining OLLI, just a love of learning for the sake of learning. The classes have no tests, no grades and no required homework.

Winter OLLI classes in Pittsfield include "International Folk Dance," "Ancient Writing Systems," "The Many Faces of Addictions," "Today’s


Bruins Bag Banner With OT Win in Kittredge Tourney
By Stephen Dravis, Sports
10:03PM / Sunday, January 15, 2017

PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- Caleb Kollmer capped the 46th Gib Kittredge Hockey Tournament in style.

The Berkshire Bruins defenseman Sunday scored midway through the second overtime to give the hosts a 4-3, come-from-behind victory over Avon, Conn., in the Bantam Division title game.

Seamus Hayes scored with just less than three minutes left in regulation to complete the Bruins’ comeback from a 3-1 deficit, and Nate Haley made two saves in the last 10 seconds of regulation to send the game to OT.

“Whenever you win the Kittredge, you get to look at the banner for a couple more years,” Bruins’ coach Rob Abel said. “A lot of these guys, this is their last

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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

Multiple Towns Battle Blaze in Pittsfield Apartment Building
By Andy McKeever,
08:45AM / Sunday, January 15, 2017

Lenox, Adams, and Williamstown sent ladder trucks to the scene. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Multiple towns joined Pittsfield Fire early Sunday morning to combat a blaze in a multi-family building on Dalton Avenue.   Fire Chief Robert Czerwinski said a family of five was taken to Berkshire Medical Center for smoke inhalation during the blaze which completely destroyed the apartment building.   The chief said the department received the call to respond to 8 Dalton Avenue at 3:30 in the morning as flames shot out of the building.   "On arrival fire was showing and people were evacuated from the building. We believe everyone is out of the building and safe. Some of the


BCC Enters Home Stretch Of Renovation Project
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:23AM / Sunday, January 15, 2017

The classroom spaces have have much more natural light with the renovations. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The state's oldest community college is starting to look more like the newest.   Berkshire Community College is wrapping up renovations to two academic buildings. The $30 million renovations have been under way since the spring 2015.   The renovated Hawthorne Hall was opened on June 1 and construction workers are putting the final touches and equipment is being moved into Melville Hall in anticipation for an opening later this month.   "We're looking late spring or early summer," Director of Facilities David Moran said of the entire project, which


Lanesborough Neighbors Opposing Day Care On Residential Street
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:24AM / Saturday, January 14, 2017
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Should a day-care center operate in a residential neighborhood?   That is a question facing officials in Lanesborough as a day-care center opened in a Sunrise Street home and the neighbors are worried about the effect it will have on the neighborhood. Those opposing the child care operation say it is operating as a business and needs to be treated as such — and therefore isn't allowed by zoning laws.   But the building inspector has ruled that it is not a business but rather is an "accessory use" and a home occupation.   The town allows home occupations and zoning says nothing more than a sign can be evident of the business. The


Pittsfield Council Questions Snow Plowing Operation
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:13PM / Friday, January 13, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Cars on the road, sidewalks being plowed in, and speeding are all continual concerns for the City Council when it comes to the city's management of snow storms.   The council on Tuesday called on Commissioner of Public Services David Turocy to discuss the snow plowing procedures. Turocy outlined the process and answered questions regarding issues relating to the efforts to clean up the roads during a storm.   "We have 20 contractors, 40 vehicles, so several of them have a couple vehicles and some are just one pickup on their own," Turocy said. "We don't call all of them for every storm depending on the conditions and how much we did

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@theMarket: Quarterly Earnings Will Dictate Market's Direction Next Week
By Bill Schmick,
04:12PM / Friday, January 13, 2017

Fourth-quarter earnings results for the nation's corporations kicked-off this week. Investors will focus on those numbers as they wait for the really big show at the end of next week.

Our president-to-be will be inaugurated next Friday with all the usual fanfare. Investors and the markets usually ignore these displays of pomp and ceremony, but not this time. Whether it is the mercurial nature of our new president, or the fact that a lot is riding on how successful he will be out of the gate, the stock market is hanging on every word (or tweet) he makes.

Consider his press conference this week. To many, he did not say enough about his corporate tax cutting or spending plans. Traders


'La La Land': On the One Hand, and Then on the Other
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
02:43PM / Friday, January 13, 2017

I already knew I was somewhat of a dreamer, but my generally warm and starry-eyed acceptance of wunderkind writer-director Damien Chazelle's "La La Land," a throwback/homage to the nascent movie musicals of the 1930s, also confirms that I am a hopeless romantic. The curious idea to have Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling play the sort of aspiring showbiz kids Ruby Keeler and Dick Powell portrayed in vehicles like "42nd Street" (1933) won me over despite the film's unrealistic plotting and a minor litany of incongruities.

But then again, this is the movies, and just how much suspension of disbelief one is willing to assume is always in direct proportion to how much


Acitivities Planned for King Day of Service on Monday
01:53PM / Friday, January 13, 2017

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Martin Luther King Jr. Day this Monday will feature events and volunteer efforts across the county.

In North Adams, the Martin Luther King Day Committee welcomes volunteers for its 24th annual Day of Service and celebratory lunch.

The day begins with registration at 8:30 a.m. at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts' Church Street Center. There will be projects on-site and at more than 10 other sites around the area such as Goodwill and the Northern Berkshire Family YMCA beginning at 9 a.m. Service tasks are suitable for all ages and abilities and include tasks such as painting, cleaning, organizing, building, winterizing, or sewing.

The free luncheon and


Berkshire Bank Appoints New SVP Regional Operations Leader
01:17PM / Friday, January 13, 2017

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Bank has announced the appointment of Jeannine Cimino to senior vice president, regional operations leader, for the Mid- Atlantic Region.
Cimino brings more than 20 years of industry experience, the last six of which have been dedicated to her role of director of marketing and sales for First Choice Bank. Through the recent acquisition of First Choice Bank, Berkshire Bank appointed Cimino to her new position.
As SVP, regional operations leader, Cimino will be responsible for branch leadership and guiding a team of Private Bankers and My Banker, Relationship Managers in the Mid-Atlantic Region to assist in attaining desired profitability


William Pitt Sotheby's International Realty Welcomes Lenox Agent
01:11PM / Friday, January 13, 2017

LENOX, Mass. — William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty has announced that Tonia L. Scalise, a top Broker in Pittsfield and surrounding areas, has joined the company and will be based in the firm'’s new Lenox brokerage.

Scalise is a recognized leader in real estate sales, nearing 30 years in the industry. Her high energy and passion for real estate have made her a favorite among long-standing clients and brokers throughout the Berkshires. After running her own brokerage firm for almost 10 years, Scalise will join William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty, where she will offer  market exposure with a vast global reach and consistent advertising in


Superior Court Briefs: Jan. 9 - Jan. 12
Staff Reports,
12:57PM / Friday, January 13, 2017
Cases heard before Judge John Agostini on Monday, Jan. 9.   John Smith, 52, of Hinsdale pleaded guilty to three counts of larceny of a firearm, and single counts of unarmed burglary, breaking and entering in the nighttime, larceny over $250, and conspiracy to commit a crime.   He was ordered to serve 18 months of a two and a half year sentence at the Berkshire County House of Correction on all charges except for unarmed burglary. He was placed on three years probation on that charge.   The charges stem from a housebreak in Pittsfield on May 28, 2012.   Richard Martel, 27, of Pittsfield pleaded guilty to a single count of aggravated assault and battery by means of a


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