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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Mount Greylock Grad Wins Iron Division at Pedal & Plod
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
10:03AM / Tuesday, August 01, 2017
ADAMS, Mass. -- If competitive high school cycling was a thing in this neck of the woods, Evan Arthur might have found the sport sooner.   And he probably would have done quite well for himself.   Instead, all he did in four years at Mount Greylock was help continue the school’s runs of eight straight Western Mass cross country titles and seven straight state Nordic ski crowns.   And in the spring of his senior year, the recent high school graduate found a new athletic pursuit. On Sunday, he joined more than 100 competitors at the 34th annual Pedal & Plod, putting himself to the test against a 4.4-mile running course followed by a 22-mile bike race, all in the hills

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Lanesborough Raises Questions On School Regionalization Vote
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:33AM / Tuesday, August 01, 2017
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The long-discussed vote on regionalization of the Lanesborough-Williamstown schools goes to the voters on Nov. 14.   The Board of Selectmen set that date for a special town meeting to handle the question of whether or not Williamstown and Lanesborough should join together with Mount Greylock Regional as a single K-12 regional school district. School officials have been talking about taking such a step for years and it is eyed to save both towns money and improve efficiency.   "Even though we have regionalization at the high school and the shared superintendency, we still have three separate school districts," Chris Dodig, a Lanesborough

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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

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by Soapbox 04:10PM / Tuesday, December 10, 2013

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Former Coach, Minor Leaguer to Appear at Baseball and the Berkshires Exhibit
09:01PM / Monday, July 31, 2017
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. -- "Baseball and the Berkshires: A County's Common Bond" continues its summer offerings on Saturday with a special appearance from former Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts assistant coach and former Babe Ruth Baseball coach Tom Rizzo.   The former Atlanta Braves farmhand will be on hand from 2 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 5, to talk baseball, give tips and sign autographs.   The Baseball and the Berkshires exhibit at the Berkshire Mall is open Fridays from 2 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 6.

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Mosquito Control Spraying Planned in Pittsfield
03:45PM / Monday, July 31, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The state Department of Public Health has confirmed the presence of West Nile virus in a sample of mosquitoes collected in the city. The Berkshire County Mosquito Control Project regularly monitors the larval and adult mosquito population and tests for mosquitoes carrying the West Nile virus or Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus.    To reduce the mosquito population and potential for infection, truck-mounted mosquito spray application is scheduled for 10 p.m. to midnight Thursday, Aug. 3, on roads within a one-mile radius of Route 41and Route 20 intersection (Route 41 to Richmond line; Route 20 to and including Callahan Drive, Cloverdale and Branch

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Letter: A Nursing Strike at BMC Not in Patients' Interest
Letters to the Editor,
03:00PM / Monday, July 31, 2017

To the Editor:

Berkshire Medical Center has been my employer for 23 years. I work in a non-management, staff recruitment role. My mother is a retired registered nurse and my father was a member of two labor unions during his career. I grew up influenced by nursing and labor.

Health care is a difficult and complex business. Whether one works in a clinical function, or in another role that supports the operation of a hospital, the work is hard. Financial viability is a constant struggle and dollars are ever shrinking. Given the goals of the current federal administration even tougher times may lie ahead. BMC is a not-for-profit hospital. "Profits" become additional services,

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Berkshires Beat: Williamstown Residents Riding in Pan-Mass Challenge
02:16PM / Monday, July 31, 2017

Quite a challenge: On Aug. 5 and 6, three riders from Williamstown will cycle up to 192 miles in the Pan-Mass Challenge with the goal of raising $48 million for critical research and cancer care at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. During PMC weekend, Laurie Thomsen, Kris Herman and Sam Smith from Williamstown will join the more than 6,200 cyclists from more than 40 states and eight countries who will participate in the PMC, choosing from 12 routes of varying mileage that run through 46 towns. Cyclists are anywhere between 15 and 84 years old and range from seasoned triathletes to weekend warriors who trained for this event alone and everything in between.

Many riders participate in the PMC

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A Year Later, J.B. Paper Warehouse Remains a Pile of Rubble
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:14AM / Monday, July 31, 2017

Shortly after the fire, the city went in and knocked down the walls of the gutted building, and secured the site with a fence. Later a lien was placed on the property for the work. But, 11 months later, a pile of rubble still remains.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — It has been 11 months since one of the biggest fires the city has seen in decades.

The sky was lit up for miles. Fire companies from all over the county descended on the scene to douse the flames towering high from the former J.B. Paper warehouse.

And today, the remains of that night are still piled high. In 11 months, there has been little to no progress toward cleaning up the mess left behind and the cause of the fire

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McCann School's District Towns Getting Some Funds Back
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
01:52AM / Monday, July 31, 2017
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Some towns in the Northern Berkshire Regional School District are going to see a little bit of relief in their assessments, and others will get turnbacks of transportation funds.   Superintendent James Brosnan told the McCann School Committee on Thursday that now that the state budget has passed, he has firmer numbers that will be relayed to the towns.   "Chapter 70 increased so I reduced the amount of money that we have in tuition so those two balance out because we cannot change the budget bottom line, it is how we get to it," he said. "So up in Chapter 70, down in tuition but up in the municipal minimum."     The

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State Senate Approves Expanding Veterans Tax Write Off Program
Staff Reports,
03:18PM / Sunday, July 30, 2017
BOSTON, Mass. — The state Senate wants to give veterans the ability to "work off" more of their tax bills through community service.   The Senate on Thursday passed a bill to increase the amount veterans can work off from $1,000 to $1,500 in work-off programs.    "Currently, senior citizens who perform volunteer services in the communities that participate in the senior work off program are eligible to receive a $1,500 reduction in their property tax bill," state Sen. Adam Hinds said in a statement.     "My amendment aligns the amount veterans can also expect to see discounted from their property taxes for the same types of community

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Tomkiewicz, Jones Record Hat Tricks for Berkshire Attack
03:03PM / Saturday, July 29, 2017
MOUNT HERMON, Mass. -- The Berkshire Attack girls lacrosse team recently dropped a 13-9 loss to Catamount Lacrosse at Northfield Mount Hermon School.   Hoosac Valley Regional High School's Sarah Tomkiewicz and Mount Greylock's Carolyn Jones each scored three goals for the Attack.   Wahconah's Maddie Nief and Mount Greylock's Brooke Phelps anchored the Berkshire defense, which got 15 saves from Hoosac Valley's Abi Disbrow.

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Little Bellas Mentors Young Girls Through Mountain Biking
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:22AM / Saturday, July 29, 2017

The program was so well liked in the first year that nearly all of the girls returned. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — There is nothing else Mary Parkman would want to do instead of going mountain biking with her friends.   It gives her confidence, camaraderie, and is a lot of fun. Now she is passing on what has been such a big part of her life to young girls. Parkman runs Little Bellas summer camp. The weeklong program connects young girls with mentors, and together they mountain bike.    "It has been a big part of my life and my friendships. And we're passing it on to the girls," Parkman said.   The program started last year as a local chapter of the

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Berkshire Force 12U Team Wins County Title
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
08:56PM / Friday, July 28, 2017
PITTSFIELD, MASS. -- The Berkshire Force 12-and-under softball team jumped out to a five-run lead after two innings and held off Dalton for an 9-3 win in the Berkshire County Championship at the Doyle Complex.   Maddie Ladowski scattered six hits and struck out five to earn the win in the circle, and Abby Lummus went 2-for-4 with a triple and four runs scored as the Force won a four-team tournament that got under way on Wednesday.   The big blow came from Mia Alfonso, who delivered a bases clearing three-run single to make it 5-0 in the bottom of the second. But the Force got at least one hit from seven different players.   “This team, we’re really

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