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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Smart Investing Can Help You Race Toward Your Goals
Submitted by Edward Jones,
12:05PM / Wednesday, May 03, 2017

It's Kentucky Derby time again. Even if you're not much of a horse racing fan, you might appreciate all the Derby's pageantry – the mint juleps, the women's beautiful hats, the singing of "My Old Kentucky Home," and so on.

But if you look beyond the hoopla, you'll realize just how much work it takes to put on such an event. And the efforts of one group in particular – the jockeys – may be able to provide you with some lessons in life – and in investing.

For starters, consider the stamina the jockeys show as they steer 1,000-pound thoroughbreds around the track at Churchill Downs. Riding a racehorse is difficult, demanding and


Economic Development Sec. Ash Holds Summit On Workforce Development
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
07:22PM / Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash is one of three state secretaries involved in the Workforce Skills Cabinet project. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The state has brought together local leaders to develop a "blueprint" for regional workforce development.   Representatives from business, education, and community organizations met with Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash on Tuesday for a four-hour planning session.   The session is part of seven Workforce Skills Cabinet meetings across the state with the hope to better align the education, the workforce, and economic development.    "We are here to help advanced the


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

Pignatelli Secures Funds for County Initiatives, MassPike Study
05:48PM / Tuesday, May 02, 2017
BOSTON — State Rep. William "Smitty" Pignatelli, D-Lenox, secured funding and language for the 4th Berkshire District in the House of Representatives' version of the fiscal 2018 state budget was passed last week.   It includes language that would require the state Department of Transportation to study the feasibility of building a new exit between Exits 2 and 3 of the Massachusetts Turnpike and report back to the Legislature by next January. There are 29 miles between those two exits — Lee in Berkshire County and Westfield in Hampden County.    "The distance between Exits 2 and 3 of the turnpike is the longest on the state highway,"


Mark Named Legislator of the Year by Mass Children's Alliance
03:39PM / Tuesday, May 02, 2017
BOSTON — State Rep. Paul Mark, D-Peru, was awarded Legislator of the Year by the Massachusetts Children's Alliance on April 26.   Northwestern District Attorney David Sullivan presented the award to Mark at a ceremony during Child Advocacy Center Awareness Day at the State House.   "Rep. Paul Mark has been a champion for children and families," said Sullivan. "His strong advocacy on behalf of abused and neglected children has been unwavering."   Mark was joined at the ceremony by MACA Executive Director Tom King, and by staff and board members from the CACs in his district.    "I am honored to receive this award from MACA, an

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Lanesborough FinCom Approves Budget, Cuts Health Insurance Lines
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:53AM / Tuesday, May 02, 2017
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Finance Committee approved its version of the budget on Monday, but that board's decision to cut close to $50,000 from health insurance lines has the town manager concerned.   "I really am concerned about the amount of money being cut out of health insurance," Town Manager Paul Sieloff said. "It is an unnecessary risk."   Sieloff had proposed an $11.4 million budget and the Board of Selectmen had already had its crack at it, cutting a few thousand from the proposal. The plan would raise taxes by 3 percent, the majority of which is for the Mount Greylock Regional School renovation and build.    On Monday, the Finance

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Berkshires Beat: Adams Native Stars in ‘Peppa Pig’ Stage Show
10:54PM / Monday, May 01, 2017

Pigging out: Adams native Evan M. Pinsonnault is an actor with Peppa Pig's first-ever U.S. theatrical tour, "Peppa Pig's Big Splash." The show splashes down in Springfield for the final performance in its spring 2017 tour ( The show will be at Symphony Hall on Sunday, May 7, at 2 p.m.

Pinsonnault, stage name Evan Michael, plays the roles of Daddy Pig, Mr. Bull and Danny Dog in the live show. Springfield is one of more than 30 cities in the United States and Canada on the spring tour. Pinsonnault also played the roles of Daddy Pig, Mr. Bull and Danny Dog in the 2015-2016 tour, which visited more than 90 cities.

Pinsonnault is a 2001 graduate of Hoosac


Pittsfield Police Field 4th Report of Groping
Staff Reports,
03:09PM / Monday, May 01, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Police are launching extra patrols in the downtown area after yet another report of a woman being "groped" while out walking.   Police say on Thursday at about 9:27 a.m. a 19-year-old woman said she was groped by a man while she was walking on South Street near the Colonial Theatre. The woman describes the man as being a "white male, dark brown colored hair, clean shaven, with a scrawny thin build."   "This incident is the fourth reported assault in recent weeks. The Pittsfield Police Department asks residents and visitors to be vigilant while walking alone and to immediately contact police if they suspect they are being followed.


Biz Briefs: Lee Outlets Join In 'More Than Pink' Movement
03:07PM / Monday, May 01, 2017

Thinking pink: Simon Malls and Simon Premium Outlets across New England, including the Lee Premium Outlets, is holding its Spring 2017 More Than Pink movement in support of Susan G. Komen and the fight against breast cancer. As part of its pledge to donate $1 million each year in 2017 and 2018, more than 180 participating Simon Malls, The Mills and Premium Outlets nationwide will be participating in a range of activities throughout the month of May.

Visitors to Simon Malls and Simon Premium Outlets will notice the pink theme carried throughout the shopping centers with features such as pink-lit entrances, pink flowers on display, pink ribbon parking and more. Staff will also be donning


AAA, RMV Partnership Expands Into Pittsfield
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:17PM / Monday, May 01, 2017

State Sen. Adam Hinds read a proclamation recognizing the partnership. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Renewing a driver's license or registration just got easier.   The state Department of Transportation and AAA have teamed up locally to expand convenience of Registry of Motor Vehicle services. AAA members can now access all of those services from the organization's Pittsfield branch instead of having to go to the RMV.   "We want to make it easy and convenient to obtain registry services," said Mary Tibma, said RMV deputy registrar for external affairs.   State and AAA officials cut a ribbon at the AAA branch on Merrill Road on Monday, which becomes the


MCLA Names Recipients of Berkshire County Educator Recognition
01:06PM / Monday, May 01, 2017

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts has announced the recipients of the seventh annual Berkshire County Educator Recognition Award. This award, given by MCLA in collaboration with Berkshire County K-12 superintendents and Berkshire Community College, was created to honor the region’s exceptional teachers.

This year's recipients will be recognized on Thursday, May 4, at 5:30 p.m. in Murdock Hall room 218, on the MCLA campus. The event is free and open to the public.

The recipients are Lisa Kelly Kane (Early Childhood – Community Setting), director of St. Paul's Children Center of Stockbridge; Robin Poirot (PreK-Grade 2), a kindergarten


Local Economic Specialists See Mall Site As An 'Opportunity'
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:50AM / Monday, May 01, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Nathaniel Karns posed a question to David Curtis: Does the county have a place for a manufacturer to construct a 150,000 to 200,000 square-foot facility?   "Yes until you impact the environmental issues that surround the parcels which make it unusable. So the answer is no," Cutis, the economic development specialist with 1Berkshire, responded.   Berkshire Regional Planning Commission's executive director prefaced the question by saying most of the county's homegrown manufacturing companies expanded 10 to 15 years ago. The next step would be to double again but there is no industrially zoned and developable land available in the


Habitat For Humanity Kicks Off Expanded Women Build
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:33AM / Monday, May 01, 2017

The wood used for construction will feature handwritten notes. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Norma Delsonno's five children had never built a snowman.   The family lived in apartment buildings with little yard space and neighborhood kids would likely knock it over anyway. This winter though, she was approved to become a homeowner through Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity. After a snowstorm hit, she and her husband drove the children up to a vacant lot on Clarendon Street where next winter she'll move into her new home — and have plenty of room for snowmen.   "They're in the community and they are doing great work. They are lovely people. She is


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