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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

Hike in County's COVID-19 Positivity Rate Drives Mount Greylock District to Remote Learning
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
09:29PM / Thursday, December 03, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Two days after Mount Greylock regional middle-high school went fully remote, the entire PreK-12 district followed suit.   Mount Greylock Regional School District Superintendent Jason McCandless on Thursday notified families that Lanesborough Elementary and Williamstown Elementary will be going remote because of an increase in the county's COVID-19 positivity rate.   On Thursday, the commonwealth reported that the county's rate was 3.01 percent in the Weekly COVID-19 Public Health Report.   "This summer we negotiated for a 3 percent test positivity rate in Berkshire County as a component in our metrics to determine a move to remote

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Storm System Could Bring Region's First Nor'easter of Season
04:30PM / Thursday, December 03, 2020
The dusting of snow the Berkshires got on Wednesday — after enjoying temperatures in the high 50s the days before —may have been a warning of things to come.    The National Weather Service in Albany, N.Y., has posted a winter storm watch for the Berkshires this weekend and some forecasters say this could be the first Nor'easter of the season.    "It looks like as we go forward we are going to see a strengthening storm coming up the Eastern Seaboard, but the forecasting dilemma, and it always is, is the exact track of the storm," AccuWeather Chief Broadcast Meteorologist Bernie Rayno said on Thursday.   NWS is warning of heavy snow and

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The Retired Investor: Bitcoin Is Back
By Bill Schmick,
04:17PM / Thursday, December 03, 2020
After a three-year hiatus, cryptocurrencies have returned and are attracting the attention of investors. Will this time be any different?   Readers may recall the Bitcoin craze that sent the largest digital currency to an all-time high of $20,000 in 2017 and spawned numerous copy-cat cryptos like Ethereum and Litecoin.   You may also remember that all of them came crashing back to earth and ignominy where they have languished, unloved, until this year.   This week, Bitcoin hit a new three-year record of $19, 857. If that is news to you, there is a reason for that. After the last buying frenzy and subsequent crash, the financial media has taken a more cautious approach in

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Williamstown Nonprofit Seeks CPA Funds for Agricultural Restriction
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:34AM / Thursday, December 03, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Rural Lands Foundation plans to ask the town for Community Preservation Act funds to support an Agricultural Preservation Restriction for a property on Green River Road.   WRLF Executive Director David McGowan was before the Agricultural Commission last week to ask that body for a letter of support for the application he plans to bring to the Community Preservation Committee next month.   Rural Lands is working with the owners of Fairfield Dairy Farm to secure an APR from the Massachusetts Department of Agriculture for "approximately 20 acres" McGowan told the commission, which voted unanimously to support the

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Williamstown Planning Board Hosts Wednesday Panel Discussion on Cannabis
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:12AM / Wednesday, December 02, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The town's effort to reach a consensus on regulations for cannabis production continues Wednesday evening with a panel discussion hosted by the Planning Board.   As part of the board's yearlong effort to develop a zoning bylaw amendment that might pass at this spring's annual town meeting, it has scheduled a virtual event titled "Marijuana Cultivation: Issues and Opportunities," for 7:30 p.m. on the Zoom virtual meeting platform.   The chair of the Planning Board in Sheffield will join two attorneys from KP Law and the CEO of EOS Farm, a large cannabis cultivator in Pittsfield, to talk about some of the considerations that

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CSX Acquiring Pan Am Railways
Staff Reports,
05:21PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — CSX Corp. says it has signed an agreement to acquire North Billerica-headquartered Pan Am Railways Inc.    Pan Am is considered the largest regional railroad with a 1,700-mile rail network in New England and New York and a partial interest in the more than 600-mile Pan Am Southern system. Its tracks run through the Hoosac Tunnel.    "Pan Am is pleased to reach this agreement with CSX, a North American leader in rail-based freight transportation," Pan Am President David A. Fink said in a statement announcing the deal. "This is great news for New England shippers and the national freight network overall."   Pan Am,

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Second Positive Test Sends Mount Greylock to Remote Learning
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com
02:13PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- After a second positive COVID-19 test in a Mount Greylock Regional School student in as many days, the middle-high school is switching to remote learning through Wednesday, Dec. 9.   Principal Jacob Schutz notified the school community of the move in an email Tuesday afternoon. The announcement was repeated on school's home page.   Schutz said said the move was being made "out of an abundance of caution."   "This short hiatus of in-person learning provides time and space for us to validate our current safety practices and procedures and further improve our confidence that there was no transmission within the building," Schutz

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Baker: COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout to Begin This Month
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:37PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
BOSTON — Widespread access to COVID-19 vaccines probably won't occur until late spring, Gov. Charlie Baker said at his pandemic update on Tuesday.    The governor said he anticipated that the focus would be on high-risk individuals as the vaccines are rolled out in December and the first part of the year.   "The focus is going to be on the people we are all the most worried about, right, either because of what they do for work or because of their age, or because of their physical condition," he said.   Federal officials on a call Monday told governors that the vaccine distribution is expected to begin in mid-December and through March, Baker said. The

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Lever Seeks Applicants for Mohawk Trail Entrepreneur Challenge
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:03AM / Monday, November 30, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Entrepreneurs have about two weeks to apply for a grant program that looks to support sustainable, woodland-related businesses.   Lever Inc. in North Adams is hosting the Mohawk Trail Entrepreneur Challenge, which offers a prize of $25,000 to the winner and guidance in developing a business plan to all who apply.   It is the latest in a series of challenges organized by Lever, which has helped launch 46 new companies in the Berkshire regions since its inception in 2014.   This time around, Lever is partnering with the Mohawk Trail Woodlands Partnership, a collaboration of 16 municipalities in Franklin and Berkshire County's Mohawk Trail (Route

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In Lanesborough, Williamstown Schools, 'We Over Me' Ethic Promotes Safety
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:54AM / Sunday, November 29, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — In the Old Testament it says, "a little child shall lead them."   In the Mount Greylock Regional School District, the kids are up to that leadership role.   "As [Lanesborough Elementary School Principal Nolan Pratt] said, our students are probably the number one reason why we are actually maintaining safety," Williamstown Elementary Principal Kristen Thompson told the School Committee on Monday night. "They are maintaining their social distancing, they're sanitizing, and you should see how quickly they're able to come into the building now. They know if they're on the list or they're not on the list, and they

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Williamstown Community Preschool Installs New Signage
by Billsville
02:46PM / Tuesday, February 26, 2013
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Community Preschool began sprucing up its new home by hiring local sign maker Lindsay Neathawk, owner of Neathawk Signs and Design, to create a 3D sign for the business.

Neathawk installed the sign late Monday afternoon that features multicolored hand prints from the children as the leaves of a tree poking out of the top. Underneath the name and address "a place to grow" is written. The children's hand prints were taken at the school and Neathawk then scanned them into her design programs to create the sign.

The

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Grand Tradition Concert 2011
by Billsville
02:30PM / Monday, December 19, 2011
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WilliNet has posted this year's Grand Tradition Concert, recorded on Dec. 11, at the Williamstown Elementary School. You can also find it on the WilliNet schedule here.

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