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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

@theMarket: Markets Held Hostage by Trade & Machines
By Bill Schmick,
03:19PM / Friday, May 24, 2019
If it were not for computer-driven trading, it might actually be funny. Financial markets are careening up and down on a daily basis based on the next tweet or comment from the Trump administration or its counterparts in China. We could see more of the same next week.   Rhyme or reason has truly left the station. Day by day, the trade war of words is accelerating. This week, the U.S. banned China's largest technology company, Huawei, from doing business with American companies. The president accused the company of espionage. The Chinese responded by threatening to drop trade negotiations. Markets collapsed, led by semi-conductor and technology stocks.   A day later, the


'John Wick: Chapter 3 Parabellum': How Can I Kill Thee? Let me Count the Ways
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
01:27PM / Friday, May 24, 2019
There are two things in this world that really confound me. Nope, it's not wondering what the secret of life is. I've got that figured. It's to get a Ferrari. And it isn't how many angels can you fit on the head of a pin, either. Fifty-six, I reckon, same as DiMaggio's hitting streak.    No, the first of my dual quandary is, how anyone in America isn't repulsed by the administration currently besmirching the sanctity of democracy down in Foggy Bottom? The second dilemma that really has me scratching my head is why on Earth someone would want to see director Chad Stahelski's "John Wick: Chapter 3 Parabellum?"    I concur with Hesh


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

Greylock Names New Senior Vice President
12:00PM / Friday, May 24, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Greylock Federal Credit Union has promoted Rebecca Riordan to senior vice president, human resources.

"Rebecca's positive impact on our organization and culture is undeniable," President and Chief Executive Officer John L. Bissell said. "She has proven to be a transformational leader who brings her boundless expertise, energy and joy to Greylock employees every day. She understands that hiring, training and developing the best employees is the key to Greylock's continued success."

Riordan joined Greylock in 2017 as the vice president of human resources, where she continues to direct all HR and training functions of Greylock's


BFAIR Hires Director of ABI/MFP, Director of Homecare Services
11:48AM / Friday, May 24, 2019

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Berkshire Family and Individual Resources has hired people to fill two key agency vacancies; sirector of Acquired Brain Injury/Moving Forward Plan (ABI/MFP) and director of Homecare Services.

Both positions are filled by veterans in the human services industry with more than 20 years of experience in the field. The first was filled by an internal promotion of Deanna Davila and the second was filled by Tim Brelsford, who came from Berkshire Farm Center and Services for Youth.

Davila holds a bachelor's degree in human services and joined BFAIR in April 2017 as a house manager in Northampton in the Acquired Brain Injury program. She assisted in opening a new


Big Y's Real Estate and Development Group Names Senior Manager
11:36AM / Friday, May 24, 2019

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Big Y Foods has announced the appointment of Colin M. D'Amour as a senior manager of procurement within Big Y's Real Estate and Development team.

In this role, he is responsible for managing all aspects of purchasing and equipment buying for the company's 80 plus locations. As part of their Real Estate Committee, he is involved in evaluating viable expansion opportunities across all operating formats, including Big Y World Class Markets, Fresh Acres, Table & Vine and Big Y Express divisions. He is also project manager for the expansion of Big Y's Distribution Center current expansion project.

In addition, he oversees multiple programs and


St. Agnes Academy Names New Principal
10:49AM / Friday, May 24, 2019

DALTON, Mass. — St. Agnes Academy has announced the appointment of Fadia Rostom Makdisi of Pittsfield as principal, replacing long-time educator James Stankiewicz, effective July 1.

The Rev. Christopher Malatesta, pastor of St. Agnes Church, made the appointment while also reaffirming his unwavering commitment to the academy. He also announced the formation of an Executive Leadership Council, a group of experienced educators charged with the goal of growing the academy while maintaining high academic expectations and Catholic values and traditions.

A search committee selected Makdisi from a field of highly competitive candidates in a regional search.

"We are confident we have


Cultural Pittsfield This Week: May 24-30
10:29AM / Friday, May 24, 2019
SATURDAY Food Truck Feastival at Wahconah Park The 3rd annual Food Truck Feastival returns to Wahconah Park from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. This is a public event featuring food trucks and vendors from all around Berkshire County! Free admission. $3 for parking.   MUSIC & NIGHTLIFE SUN The Suitcase Junket at Hancock Shaker


Pittsfield, Habitat Cuts Ribbon on New Police Substation
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:07AM / Friday, May 24, 2019

Police were unable to attend because of an emergency situation but Office Friendly made an appearance.  PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The new police outreach center on Columbus Avenue is now open.   The center, or substation, dubbed the Community Outreach Post (COP) is aimed to bring the police more closely in line with the community in the West Side neighborhoods.   It was developed after a strong push from the community in the wake of murder on Robbins Avenue when a community meeting was held to discuss safety.   One of the main themes from that meeting was that residents wanted to see a stronger police presence and Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Carolyn


The Independent Investor: Don't Take Loans From Your Tax-Deferred Accounts
By Bill Schmick,
04:49PM / Thursday, May 23, 2019
It sounds too good to be true. Why borrow from a bank when you can take a loan out from your 401(k) or 403(b) and pay yourself back in both interest and principal? If that sounds like a great deal, it's not.   Money purchase plans, profit-sharing plans, 457(b) plans and both 401(k) and 403(b) plans may offer loans, but IRAs, SEP IRAs, and SIMPLE IRAs do not. The IRS does have some restrictions on the borrowing. It limits how much you can borrow at any one time. In general, you are limited to the smaller of 50 percent of your vested account balance, or $50,000. However, there is one exception (hardship) that allows you to borrow up to $10,000 even if it exceeds 50 percent of the


Pittsfield Firefighters Battling Stubborn Building Blaze
By Andy McKeever,
04:24PM / Thursday, May 23, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Firefighters are battling a stubborn fire in a four-family home on Tyler Street on Thursday afternoon. 

  Fire Chief Robert Czerwinski said at about 4 p.m. that he expected to be on the scene for at least the next few hours if not all night.    "We've got a very stubborn fire in the attic right now, we're not sure where exactly that fire started," said Czerwinski, an hour or so after the call came in. "It looks like it may have been rolling on the front porch when we arrived and extended up into the attic."    Crews were moving a second aerial truck into the back yard to bring more water to bear on the


Pittsfield Firefighters Snuff Back-to-Back House Fires
By Andy McKeever,
09:14PM / Wednesday, May 22, 2019

A police officer talks with children at the Wahconah Street fire.  PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Firefighters quickly snuffed out two back-to-back minor fires on Wednesday night -- but they were serious enough displace a dozen people.    The first was a dryer fire on South Onota Street that displaced two families, a total of eight people.   "It looked like it was just overheated," said Deputy Chief Tom Sammons. "Now again, that got out of the dryer and started a little bit of the surroundings on fire. ... So we pulled an inch and three-quarter line there, knock down the fire that was coming out of the dryer, removed the dryer from the structure. And that


Memorial Day Events 2019
By Staff Reports,
05:00PM / Wednesday, May 22, 2019

The parade will step off at 10 a.m. from the former Adams Memorial Building and conclude with the traditional ceremony at the Maple Street Cemetery. The usual route will be followed: Columbia Street to Hoosac Street, Hoosac Street to Summer Street, Center Street to Park Street. This is the parade's centennial. 

The American Legion Post 160 Honor Guard will participate. Music will be provided by the Hoosac Valley High School band and the Berkshire Highlanders. In the event of rain, the ceremony will be held in the Adams Fire Station.

Adams American Legion Post 160 will make its 87th pilgrimage to the Mount Greylock Veterans Memorial on Sunday May 26, 9 a.m. There will be


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