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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

The Retired Investor: Key to America's Future Lies in Its Past
By Bill Schmick,
04:11PM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
This is year three of a 15-year period where change will occur throughout America. It won't be an easy time for any of us. Stress, conflict, dissatisfaction, economic and political turmoil. It all lies ahead, but there is a silver lining.   In the case of regime change fueled by populism, American history may not repeat itself, but it does come damn close. Throughout our history, we have seen the pendulum swing from right to left and back again as discontent and bad times (the absence of fairness, equality, and equity) alternated with boom times and capitalism (winner-take-all mentality).   The only time the pendulum broke down was during the Civil War and it could again if

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Berkshire Athenaeum Summer Reading Program
02:58PM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Athenaeum launches its Read, Renew, Repeat summer reading program on Monday, June 24, 2024.    During the next seven weeks, the library will host a range of free activities for children, teens, and adults to foster and celebrate a love of reading. Participants can win prizes for participating and attend programs to learn about the summer reading theme of conservation and recycling.   "We've planned an exciting program for youth this summer. We have events planned at the library, in local parks, and in partnership with community groups to make summer reading a great opportunity to read, learn, and discover," said Youth

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Sturgeon Named Grand Marshal For Pittsfield Parade
01:31PM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — William P. "Bill" Sturgeon is the latest honoree chosen by the Pittsfield Parade Committee to be the grand marshal of the Pittsfield Fourth of July Parade.   He joins a list of  local people to be so honored including retired city police and fire chiefs Michael Wynn and Robert Czerwinski, respectively, as well as Julianne Boyd, the artistic director for Barrington Stage Company.   "I'm blown away," Sturgeon said when asked about his reaction to his selection. There are so many deserving people," he said, adding, "It's such an honor. It's the one non-family event I missed the most when I was in the

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MassDEP Air Quality Advisory Continues
08:24AM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Due to elevated levels of ozone expected Thursday, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has issued an air quality alert effective 11 a.m. through 11 p.m. on June 20, 2024, in nine counties across Massachusetts.    This includes Berkshire County.   Air quality is expected to be unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include people with heart or lung disease, such as asthma, older adults, children, teenagers, and people who are active outdoors. People with either lung disease or heart disease are at greater risk from exposure to air pollution.   MassDEP advises people in sensitive groups to reduce prolonged

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Former Pittsfield Mayor Honored With Housing Public Service Award
08:00AM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Linda Clairmont, former mayor of Pittsfield, has received the Canon Brian S. Kelley Public Service Award from the Massachusetts Housing & Shelter Alliance.   Clairmont accepted the award at MHSA's annual Home for Good fundraiser and award ceremony on May 16 in Boston.   She joined fellow award winners Quincy Mayor Thomas Koch and Brockton Mayor Robert Sullivan. The three were recognized for being "steadfast in their commitment to ending homelessness."   During her eight-year tenure as mayor, Clairmont sought to find effective ways to support those experiencing chronic homelessness, often partnering with social services agencies in

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'Striking Out Cancer' Event Returns June 29 in Pittsfield
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
06:00AM / Thursday, June 20, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. – Four years in and still swinging for the fences, the Striking out Cancer in the Berkshires fund-raiser returns on Saturday, June 29, at Clapp Park.   The all-day baseball and women’s softball games are the brainchild of city resident Joe DiCicco, who conceived the event as a way to raise money to support the Jimmy Fund for cancer research and patient care at Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.   For $10, any player of any ability is welcome to join in the fun. Every participant receives a T-shirt commemorating the event.   The action gets under way at 9 a.m. with a ceremonial first pitch by a child who benefited from the Jimmy

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Dunham Mall Project Passes First Fundraising Milestone
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:47AM / Thursday, June 20, 2024

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Planners reimagining Dunham Mall have pivoted to a phased approach and have surpassed their first fundraising goal.

In a couple of months, the effort has raised $8,400 — over the first milestone of $7,500 that will bring basic enhancements to the corridor. Some cafe lights have already been installed. 

"We're going to move away from the concepts that you've seen before and rather have the amount that we can fund raise help determine what we can accomplish in the space," Nicholas Russo of the Pittsfield Community Design Center reported in a social media announcement last month.

"When we reach the goal of $7,500, we can

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Lanesborough Adds New Police Advisory Member
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
05:45AM / Thursday, June 20, 2024

LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — A seasoned criminal justice professional will join the infrequent Police Advisory Review Commission.

Last month, the Select Board nominated Melody Hood for the vacant seat on the panel. The commission, which has met twice over the last two years, is tasked with coordinating with the chief for the search and interview process of law enforcement, making recommendations to the board, and advising on issues relative to the department.

PARC's first iteration is said to date back to at least the 1970s. The committee has not met regularly since 2021.

"I recently moved to Lanesborough, and I absolutely love it here," Hood said. "This is the

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Lanesborough Search for Lewis Lent Evidence Comes Up Dry
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
08:09PM / Wednesday, June 19, 2024
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Massachusetts and New York law enforcement officers searched for evidence linked to serial killer Lewis Lent Jr. at a local property on Tuesday.     Nothing was found.   According to the Berkshire County District Attorney's Office, the town property has previously been searched in connection with the same case.    "No additional evidence was recovered during yesterday's search," DA spokesperson Julia Sabourin said.   Lent, 74, is serving a life sentence for the 1990 murder of 12-year-old Jimmy Bernardo of Pittsfield and the later killing of Sara Ann Wood in Herkimer, N.Y.  Over a decade ago, he confessed

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Kids 4 Harmony Returns to Ozawa Hall
04:00PM / Wednesday, June 19, 2024
LENOX, Mass. — 18 Degrees will host their Kids 4 Harmony Summer Gala Concert on June 25, 5:30 PM, at Seiji Ozawa Hall, Tanglewood.
The evening will begin with a reception followed by performances starting at 7:00 PM. Over 50 Kids 4 Harmony students will be involved, and there will be a special piece featuring Boston Symphony Orchestra Cellist Owen Young.  
Carolyn and Eli Newberger will be honored for their dedication to the program, in addition to the  commitment they have made to child welfare and the power of music. The evening's program includes pieces by Bohm, Meyer, Price, and Couperin, as well as an original composition by one of the K4H student

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Williamstown Man Pleads Guilty To Child Sexual Abuse Charges
04:00PM / Wednesday, June 19, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — On Monday, June 17, Tom Nelson, 38 of Williamstown, pled guilty in Berkshire Superior Court to three charges related to child sexual abuse: Posing/Exhibiting a Child in the Nude Posing/Exhibiting a Child in a Sexual Act Dissemination of Matter Harmful to Minors, Second Offense According to a report from the District Attorney's Office, in 2021 the defendant utilized Omegle to make contact with an 11-year-old child. Through the connection on the Omegle, the defendant used predatory tactics to obtain graphic sexual content, on more than one platform, targeting an 11-year-old child. This is the second time the defendant has exhibited such predatory

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Dalton Library Getting a New Website
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
03:17PM / Wednesday, June 19, 2024
DALTON, Mass. — The Dalton Free Public Library is getting a new website in the near future.    The Library Director Janet Forest has been redesigning the website since April using Squarespace and hopes to launch it sometime in July.    The new website will have a page that showcases the library's events and programming. Forest would also like to have a separate page on the site for the Friends of the Library so patrons can make donations.   The website also runs through the Central and Western Massachusetts Automated Resource Sharing (CW-MARS) library consortium, so patrons can easily see the books available.    The current website is run through

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