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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Berkshire Tidbits: Mother's Day
By Judith Lerner, Special to iBerkshires
06:15PM / Thursday, May 05, 2016

Chez Nous Bistro, 150 Main St. in Lee, 413 243-6397, has reopened and they are still having fun for the next few weeks with their Thursday night Manger! Boire!/Eat! Drink! cooking demo and wine pairing tasting dinners at 6:30.

They start them about November until end-of-year holidays, pick them up again when the new year begins through the middle of February when they take their much needed vacation, then add another month and half of demos after they return in April.

If you remember from previous Tidbit columns, the two chef-owners, Franck Tessier and his wife Rachel Portnoy who is the pastry chef, present a small themed cooking lesson, share the evening's recipes, serve a full meal


Second of Three Approvals Granted For Solar Project at Hancock Shaker
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:13PM / Thursday, May 05, 2016
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Community Development Board on Tuesday gave the OK for a new solar array at Hancock Shaker Village.   Syncarpha Hancock III, a partnership between Renewable Energy Massachusetts LLC and Syncarpha Capital, is developing the project in Pittsfield and in Hancock. The Conservation Commission had already approved the project and, with the Community Development Board's approval of the site plan, only the Zoning Board of Appeals is left to issue a special permit.   The group is looking to construct three photovoltaic arrays — two in Hancock and one in Pittsfield — for a total of 5 megawatts of electricity. The Pittsfield project is on about


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

Pittsfield Residents Brainstorm Ways to Fight Crime Wave
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:31PM / Thursday, May 05, 2016

Residents gathered to air concerns and discuss solutions to stopping the crime wave. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A Pomeroy Avenue resident said he often sees drug activity outside of his house. He's called the police but nothing seems to happen, so he just stopped trying.   "I don't call up because it is a waste of time. We have a lot of drug activity and we call and nothing came of it," he said.   On Sunday afternoon, a shooting took place right at the end of his driveway. He tries to do what he can but feels nothing ever happens.   On Reed Street, a resident sees the same type of drug activity outside of the home where he raises his son. A Bartlett


Canning Announces State Senate Candidacy on Republican Ticket
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:38AM / Thursday, May 05, 2016

The announcement was made before the Veterans of Foreign Wars held its meeting. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Christine Canning describes herself as a "pit bull with lipstick" who will go to Boston and fight for Berkshire County.   The Lanesborough resident and educational consultant announced her candidacy for state Senate at the American Legion in Pittsfield Wednesday evening.   Canning is running as a Republican and will take on the winner of the Democratic primary, which features Adam Hinds, Andrea Harrington and Rinaldo Del Gallo. The Berkshire's seat is open because Sen. Benjamin Downing has opted not to run for


Senate Candidate Hinds Opens Pittsfield Headquarters
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
07:48PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

More than two dozen supporters stopped by to check out the new office space. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Senate Candidate Adam Hinds opened a downtown office on Tuesday.   Hinds is running against Andrea Harrington for the Democratic nomination for the Berkshire state Senate seat being left vacant by Benjamin Downing, who opted not to run for re-election.   Rindaldo Del Gallo has said he plans to run but has not yet jumped into the race.    The Northern Berkshire Community Coalition Executive Director Hinds held an open house at his new office on South Street — in the plaza at the Crowne Plaza — which had previously been used as the headquarters for the


Hotel on North & Architect Honored with Preservation Awards
04:02PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Hotel on North and its architect, Karen T. Hunt, are each being recognized by statewide organizations this spring for the project's preservation efforts.

Hotel on North was the recipient of a 2016 Massachusetts Historical Commission Preservation Award in the category of Adaptive Reuse for the yearlong rehabilitation and restoration of the Burns Block and New Burns Block. The Massachusetts Historical Commission awarded state historic tax credits to the hotel project in 2015. The hotel will be honored at an awards ceremony on May 19 at the Massachusetts Archives Building.

"Pittsfield has so many beautiful historic structures and stunning architecture, and


Pittsfield Police: Reports Of Luring Attempts At Reid Proved False
Staff Reports,
03:58PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Reports that someone had been trying to lure Reid Middle School students into a van in March have proved to be false.   Police released a statement on Wednesday saying one of the alleged victims admitted the story was fake and no attempt had occurred.   On March 23, two girls reported that a man in a blue van attempted to lure them into it as they walked to school. The investigation "brought to light several inconsistencies in the victim's statements," police said.    "When confronted with the contradictory evidence, one victim's family declined to participate in the investigation any further, and the other female declined


SVMC Health Blog: Good News, Gone Bad
Sponsored Content,
03:15PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

One day several years ago, a national news broadcast reporter covered a scientific study that revealed the beneficial components of chocolate. "It's good for your heart," she proclaimed. "Eat more chocolate."

The 90-second news broadcast oversimplified the findings, and so did every other news source reporting the story in the wildfire of coverage that ensued. The "good news" of dark chocolate is still making headlines now, years later. Meanwhile millions are over-consuming chocolate and other foods that — while they may have some beneficial properties — have a lot of calories. Those calories are actually doing more harm than good.

So let's


Mixture of Results for Soccer Doman Academy
02:29PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- A miserable day in Massachusetts saw a variety of results for different age groups with the Soccer Domain Academy U11 Boys, U14 Boys and U13 Girls all in action on the road and looking to continue impressive starts to their seasons.

U11 Boys

After a late start to the season for the U11 Boys, they traveled on May 1 for their second game of the campaign, after a very convincing 6-2 victory the week before, hopes were high to continue the current form.

The first half kicked off, and FC Stars started extremely quickly creating plenty of chances, with a lot of soccer played in the SDA half of the field. A very physical and quick FC Star’ team made it hard for the


Baseball Exhibit to Go Up at Country Club of Pittsfield Sports,
01:53PM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- “Baseball in the Berkshires: A County’s Common Bond” will continue its 2016 season later this month at the Country Club of Pittsfield.

The historic exhibition that traces the game from its earliest beginnings through the career of contemporary local collegians was created last year and had its initial residence at Herman Melville’s Arrowhead.

It returned to the Holmes Road site this spring for a brief stay with plans to take it on the road to various sites around the county.

The first stop will be at the CC of Pittsfield from May 16 to 20.

No admission will be charged at the exhibit, which will be displayed Monday, May 16, from noon to 4 p.m.


State Senator Downing Presented With Downing Award
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:47AM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016

State Sen. Benjamin Downing said he was humbled to receive the award. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Saturday mornings bright and early, the late District Attorney Gerard D. Downing would get dressed, head down to the Catholic Youth Center on Melville Street, descend the stairs to the mini gym and start working.   His work had nothing to do with the district attorney's office. It had to do with teaching a group of  5-year-olds how to dribble and shoot basketball. It was about becoming a mentor and inspiration for area youth.    "My father must be the only individual under 5-foot-7 in the history of the United States who fancied himself to have a good hook shot,


Pittsfield Public Safety Advisory Group Resurges
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:06AM / Wednesday, May 04, 2016
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Public Safety Advisory Committee is awaiting direction from the mayor as to what its role will be.   The committee was resurrected in 2012 as the Police Advisory Committee; last year, the City Council approved an amendment that expanded its purview for all public safety issues.   The last time the group was in the month before Linda Tyer won election in November. Many on the committee had been supporters of former Mayor Daniel Bianchi, who appointed them, and resigned. The committee was reduced to nearly nothing.   Early this year, Tyer appointed new members and the revived group met for the first time Monday to craft the new course.   The


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