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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

'Born in China': Animal Magnetism
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
12:01PM / Friday, April 28, 2017

One of the key joys of seeing "Born in China," a splendidly picturesque documentary about snow leopard Dawa and her two cubs; Tao Tao, a young snub-nosed monkey; and a giant panda

Ya Ya and her daughter, Mei Mei, was worth listening to the kids in the audience emoting. Normally, I would rail at the ragamuffins' commentary with an agitation worthy of the great W.C. Fields. But this was different. For many of the seemingly delighted and relatively polite tykes, this was their first movie experience. Respect must be paid.

Here was the nascence of what might become a lifelong love of that to which I have attributed everything from a zeal for adventure to the development of


Williamstown Elementary Talks Use Fees, School Calendar
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:44AM / Friday, April 28, 2017

School Committee member John Skavlem was acknowledged at his final meeting. Skavlem is not seeking a third three-year term in May's town election.  WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown School Committee began discussing on Wednesday how it can more equitably charge fees to outside groups for use of the school's building and grounds.   "For as long as this building has been with us, we have been wonderful members of the community," Chairman Joe Bergeron said. "Many groups in the community and from outside the community have used the facility.   "There are questions as to whether or not we're committing more of ourselves to that


Feeding the hungry
by buddy 04:12PM / Friday, February 21, 2014

Williamstown Community Preschool Installs New Signage
by Billsville 02:46PM / Tuesday, February 26, 2013

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Community Preschool began sprucing up its new home by hiring local sign maker Lindsay Neathawk,

Williamstown Youth Center Thanks Bedard Bros.
by Billsville 02:13PM / Friday, June 22, 2012
Bedard Brothers Chevrolet, through the Chevrolet Youth Soccer Program, has helped sponsor the Williamstown Youth Center's Soccer Program for the 2012 season. In addition to soccer equipment, this

The Independent Investor: World's Bread Basket No More
By Bill Schmick,
06:03PM / Thursday, April 27, 2017
The recent controversy over dairy trade policies between the Trump administration and Canada is only the tip of the iceberg. While Trump is selectively picking on one particular product, the truth is that the United States is losing its competitive advantage in many areas of agriculture.   Government subsidies to the agriculture industry worldwide have always been a thorn in the American side. That's not to say that our farmers have gone without. We, too, subsidize our farmers. Taxpayers are expected to pay at least $87 billion to help farmers over the next dozen years. And for decades, we have been spending billions each year to protect them from lost income and crop


Mount Greylock Building Project May Take on Parking Lot
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:34AM / Thursday, April 27, 2017
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Mount Greylock Regional School Committee learned Tuesday that it may have a major capital expenditure taken off its plate.   The chairman of the district's School Building Committee reported that because of cost savings realized to date in the $65 million addition/renovation project, he is hopeful that the building project will be able to add a badly needed parking lot resurfacing project back into the project.   Mark Schiek told the School Committee that he expects the SBC at next week's meeting to put the parking lot work out as an add/alternate.   That does not necessarily mean that the building project will cover the cost of the


Berkshire County Rx Round Up Set for April 29
01:43PM / Wednesday, April 26, 2017

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Community coalitions from across the county have joined forces to host a Rx Round Up at three locations on April 29 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This event is free and open to the public. Anyone with unused, unwanted and expired prescription, over-the-counter and controlled medications may stop by to dispose of them safely. Personal needles will also be accepted in puncture-proof plastic containers. The process of dropping off medication is anonymous, takes only a minute, is better for the environment, and could end up saving lives.

The Rx Round Up will take place at the following locations: North Adams Police Station, 11 Summer St.; 510 North Street in Pittsfield,


Can You Free Yourself of Some Investment-related Taxes?
Submitted by Edward Jones,
11:31AM / Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Tax Freedom Day generally falls around this time each year. This is the day when the nation as a whole has earned enough money to pay off its total tax bill for the year, according to the calculations made by the Tax Foundation. So you may want to use Tax Freedom Day to think about ways you can liberate yourself from some of the investment-related taxes you may incur.

Of course, Tax Freedom Day is something of a fiction, in practical terms, because most people pay their taxes throughout the year via payroll deductions. Also, you may not mind paying your share of taxes, because your tax dollars are used in many ways – law enforcement, food safety, road maintenance, public education,


Richardello, Gaspardi-Febles Honored With Quinn Award
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
10:47AM / Wednesday, April 26, 2017

MountainOne's Vice President for Business Insurance Linda Gaspardi-Febles was given her award from Award Committee Chairman Mick Callahan. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — When Esther Quinn died in 1998, the local business community lost someone who, after working a full day, would put in countless volunteer hours.    But others are following in her footsteps. This year 1Berkshire honored both Linda Gaspardi-Febles of MountainOne and Denise Richardello of the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts with the 18th annual Esther Quinn Award, recognizing those same type of efforts.   "Esther Quinn was a pioneer and as passionate advocate for causes that she believed in. She

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Cages Baseball Club Offers Youth Camps
08:29AM / Wednesday, April 26, 2017
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- The Cages at the Mill collegiate baseball team will hold four summer baseball camps in Williamstown and Bennington, Vt., this summer.   The morning camps are open to players ages 6 to 13 and will be taught by members of the Cages' under-22 collegiate team.   The fundamentals of the game will be covered, including throwing, hitting, fielding and bunting. Age groups will be split up during the camp for certain activities.   The dates are: July 3, 5 and 7 at the Bennington Little League Complex; July 17, 19 and 21 at the Williamstown Youth Center; July 31, Aug. 2 and 4 at the Bennington Little League Complex; and Aug. 14, 16 and 18 at the Williamstown


Williamstown Planning Board Candidates Participate in Forum
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
11:35AM / Tuesday, April 25, 2017
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The two candidates in the only contested race on May 9's town election ballot made their case to the voters last week in a forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters.   Incumbent Chris Winters is being challenged by newcomer Karen L. Shepard for his five-year seat on the Planning Board.   Shepard, a Williams College alumna and senior lecturer in the English department, and Winters, an associate provost at the college, each talked about the role of the Planning Board and the priorities that each candidate saw for the town going forward.   Winters asked voters to let him continue to help the board work for positive changes to move the town


Mount Greylock School Looking For Regionalization Vote This Fall
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:20AM / Tuesday, April 25, 2017
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Full regionalization of the Mount Greylock Regional School District is expected to go to a vote the fall.   Considerations of fully regionalizing the district have been ongoing since 2013 and are eyed to bring efficiency to the administration of the three separate school districts. Currently, Williamstown Elementary and Lanesborough Elementary make up a superintendency union that with Mount Greylock Regional School, are all separate entities sharing administration. The move would bring both elementary schools into the Mount Greylock district, creating a pre-K-12 district.   "Now we have this very cumbersome structure of shared services with


BCC Students to be Inducted Into National Honor Society
01:42PM / Monday, April 24, 2017

PITTSFIELD, Mass. mdash; Berkshire Community College will hold an induction ceremony for students joining the Xi Alpha Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa on Thursday, April 27, at 12:30 p.m. in the Boland Theatre of the Koussevitzky Arts Center on the college's main campus in Pittsfield.

Phi Theta Kappa is the national honor society of junior and community colleges in the United States. The purpose of the society is to recognize and encourage scholarship among students.

To be eligible for membership, students with freshman standing (12 to 29 credits) must have achieved a cumulative grade point average of 3.8 or better. Students with a sophomore standing (30 or more credits) must have


Local Schools Receive Olmsted Awards from Williams College
01:17PM / Monday, April 24, 2017

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Williams College has announced its 2017 Bicentennial Olmsted Awards for Faculty Development to Adams-Cheshire, Berkshire Arts and Technology (BART), Lanesborough Elementary, McCann Technical, Mount Greylock Regional, North Adams and Williamstown Elementary. Each district will receive $5,000 for professional and curricular development projects.

Adams-Cheshire will continue last year's efforts to transform C. T. Plunkett Elementary School into a full-service school, using the Olmsted Award to hire two consultants who will assist with the process. Citing Eric Jenson's book "Teaching with Poverty in Mind" as a guiding influence, the school will


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