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  1. patakeith said,

    November 13, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    Grandfamilies News
    Grandparents/Aunts/Uncles/friends – Raising others Children – Support Groups

    Williamsburg- 3rd Monday, 1-2:30 pm, 141 Main St., Haydenville- November 16th: a special art activity with Marie Westburg, Williamsburg Senior Center Director. Supplies will be provided to use and to take home. A similar art activity will be available for children that attend. Please call to reserve childcare.

    Huntington- 4th Wednesday, 10:15-11:45 am, Hilltown Family Center, 9 Russell Road (Route 20), Huntington. Childcare provided. Please note: Nov. mtg. changed to: Wed. 18th at 10 am.

    You may ask, just what are Grandfamilies? Grandfamilies is the name used to describe families that are created when a relative or friend rises to care for other relatives children. This happens for a multitude of reasons, with the occurrence on the rise. There are even great grandparents parenting again! Along with the satisfaction of helping and the joy, there are many difficulties that also surface. Among them, grief for the child, the parents and yourself, financial strain on your budget, lost independence for you and your family and perhaps the need to change or leave your employment. We at the United Arc believe that this is often too hard to navigate on your own. To help alleviate your difficulties and added stress we offer support groups where you are welcome to come, to learn about resources, to share and be heard. Talking with others that are in the same position and possibly experiencing similar problems can provide great relief. Our groups are relaxed, friendly and supportive. We invite you to join us at any one or all of the groups listed below. If you are unable to attend a group but would like someone to talk to we can meet or speak on the phone.

    Greenfield- 1st Tuesday, 5:15-6:45 pm & 3rd Wednesday, 12:30-2 pm, 90 Federal St., Greenfield. Childcare provided.
    Turners Falls- 2nd & 4th Tuesdays 11:30-1 pm, 294 Avenue A, Turners Falls. Please call to reserve childcare.

    Self care is very important and too often the last to make time for. You are important, even more so now with your added responsibilities. Make this a priority for you and join us! Just drop in. Refreshments served.
    For additional information, please call or email Pat Keith, Grandfamilies Program Coordinator, United Arc., 413-563-1981


  2. October 19, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    Preschool aged children and their families/ caregivers are invited to The Bement School in historic Deerfield on Thursday, October 29 from 9:00-10:30 a.m. Our guests will enjoy a story hour, make crafts, have a snack, and then enjoy a play performance by our first grade class. For more information:


  3. anne said,

    October 8, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    Clapp Memorial Library Book Sale BELCHERTOWN
    Oct 12-Oct 17, 2015


  4. September 21, 2015 at 4:19 pm

    The Berkshire Museum has joined Museums for All, a signature access program of the Association of Children’s Museums (ACM) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to encourage families of all backgrounds to visit museums regularly and build lifelong museum habits. The program will enable low-income families (two adults and two children) to visit the Berkshire Museum free with the presentation of an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card. Families can also visit any participating museum year-round for a minimal fee. Museums for All is part of the Berkshire Museum’s broad commitment to seek, include, and welcome all.


  5. September 11, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Chicopee Downtown Block Party is happening Saturday, September 12th, 2015 from 12:00 pm until 11:00 pm… food/drink, live entertainment and LOTS OF FAMILY FUN!
    The mission of this event is ” to promote the downtown as a public space with many functions and envision a bustling future for its streetscape” Free admission, and plenty of parking.
    We at the Chicopee Cultural Council will be there too, asking for opinions on what types of programs you as our community members would like to see funded by the generous grants we regrant locally from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
    For more information please visit


  6. Ed Kaler said,

    September 10, 2015 at 3:02 pm

    First Child in the Woods: Caregiver and Infant/Toddler Walk
    Sat, Sep 26, 2015 10:00 am – 11:00 am
    Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary, 127 Combs Rd., Easthampton

    Family (suitable for children 0 – 5 years)

    Members: Adult $5.00, Child free
    Nonmembers: Adult $7.00, Child free

    Join us for the perfect introduction to nature. This one-hour hike will allow your child or children, birth to 5 years old, to gently discover the natural world around them, and give you skills to confidently lead explorations of your own. This is an opportunity to explore the changing nature and beauty of Arcadia with your youngster each month. Feel free to stay longer to play in the nature play area or have a picnic lunch.

    Please dress for the weather, we will be outdoors the whole time.
    Registration is required.
    Call 413-584-3009 to register by phone.


  7. Community Acttion's Parent-Child Development Center said,

    September 9, 2015 at 11:32 am


    The Parent -Child Development Center is proud to now offer additional programs for Infants and Toddlers and pregnant women.

    *New Early Head Start Infant/Toddler full-day, full-year classrooms in Turners Falls

    *New Early Head Start home-visiting program for pregnant women and children 0-3 in Western Hampden County

    *New Early Head Start Toddler full-day (7 hour) classroom) in Westfield

    We continue to offer FREE Head Start half-day preschool programs and FREE Early Head Start and Head Start home-visiting programs as well as state-subsidized, sliding scale options for your full-day childcare needs. Limited transportation available.

    Apply now for our new program options!
    Franklin County 413- 475-1405
    Hampshire County 413-387-1250
    Western Hampden County 413-654-1770.

    For more information visit:

    Find us on Facebook!:


  8. Shelly Bathe Lenn said,

    September 3, 2015 at 9:48 am

    New Session Opens at The Garden

    Northampton, MA – The Garden: A Center for Grieving Children and Teens opens October 18, 2015 for new and returning bereaved families. All families with children ages 5-18 who have experienced the death of a close family member are invited to be a part of this support group free of charge.

    “Bringing my kids to The Garden helps us to make our first baby steps to mend our hearts and go on.” a Garden participant told us. Young people meet in small groups participating in projects; games and activities meant to facilitate their grieving process and led by trained and supervised adult volunteers. Adult family members meet separately with other caregivers to talk about how to support their children, who may or may not outwardly show their grief.

    The Garden will provide bereavement support at no cost to grieving families with young children from throughout Western Massachusetts beginning October 18. All groups are held at Cooley Dickinson VNA & Hospice at 168 Industrial Dr. in Northampton on Sunday afternoons.

    Families are encouraged to call now to schedule an intake interview or obtain more information. Contact Shelly Bathe Lenn at 413 582 5312 or via email


  9. Ed Kaler said,

    August 25, 2015 at 2:38 pm

    Labor Day Canoe
    Mon, Sep 07, 2015 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
    Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary, Easthampton, 127 Combs Rd.

    Family (suitable for children 8 – 16 years)
    Adult $15.00, Child $15.00
    Adult $20.00, Child $20.00

    Enjoy a late summer paddle down the Mill River. We’ll keep an eye out for beaver as well as several bird species.
    Instructions and Directions:
    Dress to be on the water, possible, water shoes and a hat are recommended. Please bring water.

    For all programs below:
    Registration is required.
    Call 413-584-3009 to register by phone.


  10. Shelly Bathe Lenn said,

    August 24, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    Northampton, MA (August 24, 2015)—The Garden: A Center for Grieving Children and Teens—a program of Cooley-Dickinson VNA & Hospice supports grieving young people and their families at no charge, announces a Call for Artists. The Garden seeks local artists to participate in an inaugural fundraising silent-auction as part of the Garden Party scheduled for October 4th. The Garden Party will take place in the Healing Garden at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton, MA

    We look forward to an incredible silent-auction!

    Artists are invited to submit a uniquely designed, 3-d watering can. The artist may paint, sculpt, transform, or adorn a watering can using mosaic, mirrors, tiles, or other media. The watering can may range in size from 12”-24”. Upon request an aluminum watering can to be provided by The Garden. All materials required for designing the watering can are the responsibility of the artist.

    All artist-designed watering cans and supplemental materials must be completed by October 1. Please contact Shelly Bathe Lenn with any questions at or 413 582 5312.

    Thank you.


  11. Kate said,

    August 13, 2015 at 3:13 pm

    Join us at Bug Hill Farm for…
    Odessa Piper loves Seasonal Pies!
    …Grand finale summer event on the farm…
    Sunday, August 22nd – 12:30 to 3:30 p.m.
    Full event: $55, Luncheon only: $25, Workshop only: $30

    Register here or call the farm 413-628-3980

    Since our last luncheon & workshop, Tastes of Summer, was such a success, we’ve invited Chef Odessa Piper back to demonstrate her recipes for sweet and savory pies at an extra, grand finale summer event on the farm!

    James Beard Award-winning Chef Odessa Piper has discovered delicious combinations of seasonal ingredients encased in pies and tarts. Following a beautiful farm luncheon featuring Odessa’s recipes, she will share and demonstrate her secrets for these fabulous dishes.

    Perfect preparation for Thanksgiving and the winter holidays!
    Wow your friends and family with deliciously flakey crusts and exciting, new fillings.

    Luncheon Menu & Workshop
    Luncheon served at 12:45
    Herbed Phyllo canapés with Bug Hill Farm Za’atar and Roast Tomatoes
    Parmesan Cups filled with salad of whole leaf herbs, autumn raspberries, creamy French Feta, and Bug Hill Farm Berry Shrub Vinaigrette
    Peach caramel Hickorynut Tarts

    Farm tour at 1:45
    Experience Bug Hill’s gardens, perennial plantings, and farm store. Participants will have the opportunity to sample from the variety of products we make on the farm.

    Workshop demonstrations at 2:15
    Odessa will share how dishes from the luncheon menu were made, providing recipes for delicious ways to encase fruits, herbs, and vegetables of the season in a variety of pies.

    She will cover tricks to tame difficult phyllo pastry into a reliable dough for canapés and tarts. Participants will also make serving cups out of parmesan cheese with a crisp, salty casing to compliment an entree salad of herbs and berries.
    We hope to see you there!


  12. Andrew Grant-Thomas said,

    July 31, 2015 at 10:19 pm

    Hey folks – in November my partner, Melissa, and I will launch a project called EmbraceRace. We’d very much welcome the participation of members from the Hilltown Families community.

    The idea is to pull together an online community of discussion and practice around caring for and socializing young kids in the context of race. We’ll have a web site, podcast, Facebook page, and other platforms, all forming an interactive community ofsupport for those of us – parents, teachers, counselors, grandparents, day careproviders, aunts and uncles – trying to raise kids with healthy racial sensibilities. Kid bloggers are more than welcome too!

    Please note that EmbraceRace is not only for parents! It’s for anyone who has a role in the lives of children and/or anyone who might have useful information, insight, questions, concerns, or experiences to share w/those who do – about race, for example. It’s for a great many of us!

    The heart and soul of the initiative will be the thoughts and ideas and questions and experiences that folks bring to the community table, often in the form of blog posts. Here’re some things to consider if you – or someone you know – might want to blog for EmbraceRace.

    1. If you’re a parent, teacher, other caretaker, you don’t have to focus on your interaction with your kid(s) about race. EmbraceRace is largely about how adults engage with race and making ourselves more informed and thoughtful about it. Thinking of it that way really opens up the blogging possibilities.

    2. Write (or record audio or video or …) about something you care about and want to engage. We hope people see this as an opportunity.

    3. Don’t be afraid to make a little ‘project’ out of this. It can be just you, your thoughts, and your computer. It can also be you interviewing your kids. Or interviewing your parents about that race-related thing that happened in 8th grade. It could be a series of response posts between you and whomever. Or… who knows? Have fun with this!

    4. Frequency and regularity of posting are up to you. We can very probably make whatever works for you work for EmbraceRace.

    5. Be as thoughtful and honest as possible. Hey – none of us is likely to lay bare everything we think and feel around race (and family, friends, etc.) on a blog site. But being as honest and thoughtful as you can about your experiences and thinking – not relying on cliches or standby family narratives – will probably be most helpful to you and your audience. If you want anonymity, you can post under your first name or initials.

    6. You don’t need to be an ‘authority’ on raising children or race, much less both, to post. In fact, our main premise is that very few of us can or would claim authority at that very challenging intersection. Engage anyway. Speak your mind, your experiences, insights, convictions, doubts, concerns… speak them anyway.

    7. 300-1000 words sounds about right. We probably won’t be too strict about length; folks should take the space to say what they want to say. That said, we think people generally will prefer to read 800 words than 1600 words, so we would prefer the former as well.

    If interested, please contact me at or Melissa at And if you know folks you think would be interested, please share this note with them.


    Liked by 1 person

  13. Kate said,

    July 27, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    Join us at Bug Hill Farm for…

    Tastes of Summer Farm-To-Table Luncheon & Workshop
    with guest chef Didi Emmons and food writer Odessa Piper

    12:30 to 3:30 on Saturday, August 1st
    rain date: August 2nd

    $55 for luncheon & workshop; $45 workshop; $15 luncheon
    Register online here or call the farm at 413-628-3980!

    A delicious luncheon meal inspired by local cultivated and wild foods from the region, followed bycooking demonstrations with culinary herb expert and author of Wild Flavors, Didi Emmons, and local foods pioneer and chef of the farm-to-table restaurant L’Etoile, Odessa Piper.

    The meal will feature Bug Hill’s fruits, as well as ingredients from local farms. Copies of Didi’s cookbook as well as Odessa’s booklet, “The Market Kitchen,” will be available for purchase. Stay after the workshop for pick-your-own berries, culinary herbs, and cutting flowers, plus a tour of the farm!

    Appetizer: farm-grown Za’atar and Hummus by farm intern Miriam
    Salad: Baby Arugula greens with purslane, currants, & anise hyssop flowers, dressed in spicy smoked lime dressing
    Soup: Ajo Blanco Gazpacho with rhubarb, raspberries, anise hyssop, & almonds
    Palette cleanser: Black Currant Sorbet made from Bug Hill berries and leaves by Fortini Gelato
    Entrée: Grilled Lavash Sandwiches with roasted squash, eggplant, and kale, gooseberries and currants, goat cheese, & thai basil pesto
    Dessert: Bumble berry tart with anise hyssop flower buds
    Drinks: Sparkling water flavored with Kiss of Cassis, Elderflower Power, & Black & Blue shrub

    We hope to see you there!


  14. Darcie Sosa said,

    July 20, 2015 at 1:08 pm

    Teen Outreach Nutrition Exercise (TONE) program aims to improve the health and well-being of teens ages 13 to 18. As teens progress through the program, they’ll earn free memberships and TONE gear along the way. Each teen must receive a quick physical assessment and fitness room orientation from one of our personal trainers prior to starting. Enrollment is free and on a rolling basis. Participation provides access to the Norris Aquatics Center, the Fitzpatrick Fitness Center, Beinecke Gymnasium and all of our free to member fitness and aquatics classes.

    TONE Perks:
    • FREE Trial Membership (to complete requirements; see below)
    • Personalized Wellness Plan
    • Exclusive TONE T-shirts for signing up
    • Earn Community Service Credits
    • Exclusive TONE Nutrition/Cooking Workshops
    • Earn a FREE Youth Membership (upon meeting requirements)

    Tone 1 Requirements: Receive a free 3 month trial membership while you complete the following:
    • 30 Workout Hours
    • 3 Hours Community Service (either at the Center or in the Community)
    • 2 Workshops
    • 1 Fitness Class (includes Aquatics Classes)
    Complete these requirements and earn a FREE 6 month membership, TONE water bottle, and access to TONE 2.

    Tone 2 Requirements: Receive a free 6 month trial membership while you complete the following:
    • 40 Workout Hours
    • 4 Hours of Community Service (either at the Center or in the Community)
    • 2 Workshops
    • 2 Fitness Classes (includes Aquatics Classes)
    • Refer 1 friend to the program
    Complete these requirements and earn a FREE 6 month membership and TONE gym bag.

    TONE logoTo enroll, pick up a packet at the front desk or in the fitness office. For more information, please contact our Youth Intervention/Prevention Curriculum (YIPC) Coordinator at (413) 528-2810 ext. 30 or email


  15. July 12, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Double Edge Theatre presents Once a Blue Moon (Cada Luna Azul)
    July 29 – August 23 on Wednesdays – Sundays at 8 p.m.
    948 Conway Road in Ashfield

    Once a Blue Moon (Cada Luna Azul) is the first Latin American based spectacle in the company’s history, taking its story from the magic realism of Isabel Allende, Bioy Casares, and Jodorowski, as well as the popular theatre that Double Edge co-artistic director and actor Carlos Uriona created in his 20 years of work in his native Argentina. Joining us this Summer to compose the music will be Micaela Farias Gomez from Santadiabla and Manuel Uriona from Santadiabla and La Bersuit, visiting from Argentina; and Michal Kuriata from Poland who is creating the puppetry. the highly visual and imaginative performance will lead the audience alongside the hills, pastures, river, and gardens of Double Edge’s Farm, and will include sets created in collaboration with local and international visual artists and craftspeople, and the excitement of the Latin American carnival.

    Double Edge Theatre offers discounted ticket packages for families, as well as discounted tickets for groups of 8 or up. The Spectacle performances are family-friendly and we often have children from age 4 and up in attendance.

    For more information, visit


  16. Kerry said,

    July 7, 2015 at 3:51 pm

    Hello! Cultural Care Au Pair is currently seeking a Local Childcare Consultant (LCC) for the Northampton area.

    You are an organizer, a mediator, a diplomat, a marketer and an advocate. You will find that working closely with host families and au pairs and marketing the Cultural Care Au Pair program are some of the most exciting and rewarding aspects of the local childcare coordinator role.

    Become a local childcare consultant (LCC) in your community!

    Cultural Care Au Pair provides flexible, affordable childcare for American families, and we rely on our local childcare consultants (LCCs) to provide on-the-ground support for host parents and au pairs during their year together. As an LCC, you are an independent contractor working out of your home office and have access to the main office as needed throughout the year.

    As an LCC, you’ll have the opportunity to:
    Provide local families with a much-needed customer service
    Develop friendships with au pairs from all over the world
    Become the local expert on au pair childcare in your community
    Earn commission and other incentives based on your success
    Qualify for domestic and international incentive trips
    Network and learn with like-minded colleagues at local and national meetings
    Have fun!

    Interested? Learn more about the local childcare coordinator position or submit your qualifications today!


  17. July 2, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    Free fun outdoor yoga in Southwick, Wednesday evenings in July. July 8, 15, 22 and 29, from 7:00 to 8:15. BYOM (Bring your own mat).


  18. Eve Rosenfeld said,

    June 29, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    Hi Everyone!

    I’m a research assistant at Harvard, working on a research study to understand typically developing children’s social and emotional development. We have a study for kids ages 8-13 and their parents, in order to better understand what factors lead to the development of social problems in kids. We’re recruiting families to participate this summer. We try to keep the study FUN for the kids (they receive prizes and gift cards) and parents are reimbursed as well for their time. It’s a great way to get involved and be a part of science!

    The study information is below, if you are interested!

    Thanks for your consideration! Please let me know if you have ANY questions!

    Eve Rosenfeld

    Healthy Kids Study:
    The Social Neuroscience and Psychopathology lab at Harvard University is enrolling children ages 8-13 in a study exploring how the brain processes social situations and how this relates to children’s experiences of the world around them and their social relationships.
    Your child may be eligible to participate if she or he:
    1) Is between the ages of 8-13
    2) Has no history of mental illness (e.g. anxiety, depression, psychosis)
    3) Has no history of neurological problems

    The study involves 2 parts:
    1) A 3-4 hour behavioral session that includes questionnaires and interviews with a researcher. ($10/hour for the family)
    2) A one-hour long brain scan during which your child will be asked to do some simple tasks ($25/hour for the family)

    Additionally, your child will have a choice of receiving a gift card at the end of each part of the study.
    To learn more about participating please call Sarah Hope Lincoln at 559-904-4431 or email


  19. June 16, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    COMMUNITY-BASED RESOURCES FOR HILLTOWN TEENS AND FAMILIES: Compiled by the Southern Hilltowns Domestic Violence Task Force, this handy guide can help families living in the hilltowns find the services they need.


  20. June 10, 2015 at 1:22 pm

    MASS MoCA is looking to hire individuals to work part time in Kidspace. Two positions are open: Kidspace ArtBar Assistant (part time; weekend hours required) & Art Ninjas Camp Counselors (seasonal part-time). See

    Camp Counselors work with the Camp Director to run the Art Ninjas Camp. Each camp day revolves around a weekly theme and daily mission, and will include art projects, outdoor play, yoga/meditation, exploration in the MASS MoCA galleries, and free time. Each week includes a day-long hike. Campers range from ages 5-12; there are 20 campers per camp session. You may read more about the specifics of each camp here [].


     Provide a safe and healthy environment for all campers

     Assist with leading art projects

     Effectively monitor campers’ behaviors

     Set up and clean up art activities and maintain cleanliness of camp space

     Serve as a positive role model for the campers

     Problem-solve through situations and seek assistance when necessary

     Maintain open communication with all camp staff

     Guide campers in participating successfully in all camp activities

     Participate in staff meetings (Monday and Friday afternoons)


     18 years or older

     Experience working with children

     Ability to work and communicate with a variety of age and skill levels

     Ability to think quickly and effectively on your feet

     Energetic, responsible, dependable, and adaptable


     Art-making experience

     Camp counselor or art teaching experience

     CPR/First Aid certified

    $10/hour. Hours are 8:15am-5pm, Monday-Fridays, from August 10-28. One training day is required on Wednesday, August 5, from 9am-5pm. If you are not already certified, there will be a mandatory CPR and First Aid training (date to be determined). We will be doing a CORI (background) check for all accepted applicants.

    Please email your resume and application (found at to Museum Educator and Camp Director Hilary Knecht at


  21. June 10, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    MASS MoCA is looking to hire individuals to work part time in Kidspace. Two positions are open: Kidspace ArtBar Assistant (part time; weekend hours required) & Art Ninjas Camp Counselors (seasonal part-time). See

    ArtBar assistants oversee public hours in the Kidspace gallery, facilitating drop-in art-making experiences for families. The ArtBar offers dynamic art activities that are thematically connected to current MASS MoCA exhibitions, especially the Kidspace exhibition, Walk in My Shoes. Assistants would fill in part-time, as needed. Responsibilities include preparing and tidying the gallery, welcoming visitors and answering questions, and supporting art-making by explaining and distributing art projects and materials. Successful candidates should be friendly, outgoing, and interested in the arts, and have flexible schedules.

    $10/hour. Shifts are from 10am-7pm on Thursdays-Saturdays and 10am-6pm on Sundays-Wednesdays. Position would have occasional hours in July and move to 30+ hours per week from August 10 – September 7 (subject to availability). Preferably, the candidate would be available to stay on to work occasional weekend hours as-needed throughout the school year. Must be 18 years or older to apply.

    Please email your resume and cover letter to Museum Educator Hilary Knecht at


  22. Timothy L. said,

    June 10, 2015 at 11:29 am


    The Amherst Business improvement District in collaboration with Tim Anderson, director of the UMass Minuteman marching band, is thrilled to announce the launch of three Amherst Community Band Concerts this summer. The concerts are scheduled for June 12, July 17, and August 14 from 6:00pm to 7:30pm in Sweetser Park in downtown Amherst.

    The first Amherst Community band concert on June 12th kicks off the Amherst BID’s ‘Downtown Beats’, a series of musical events, aimed to bring more music and people into downtown Amherst during the summer. Another component of Downtown Beats is the Kendrick Park Summer Concert series, comprised of four concerts scheduled for July 16, 23, 30 and August 6 from 5:30-8:00pm. The Kendrick Park series will have musical acts from a variety of genres.

    All concerts during Amherst BID’s Downtown Beats are free and open to the public. Food will not be sold at the concerts. Attendees are encouraged to purchase food and drinks at the many delicious restaurants surrounding both concert venues.

    For more information about the Amherst BID and upcoming events, visit


  23. Sarah said,

    May 20, 2015 at 12:24 pm

    Parents Invited to Nominate Children; Sweepstakes Honors Star Students with Once-in-a-Lifetime In-Game Opportunities at Each Home Game throughout 2015 Season

    What: In celebration of its commitment to education and the successful start to the New England Revolution’s 2015 season, Santander Bank, N.A. has announced the launch of its second consecutive Santander Soccer Scholars program. The program gives New England youth the chance to win a unique VIP Match Day experience with the Revolution in recognition of their academic achievement.

    To participate in the Santander Soccer Scholars program, parents are invited to submit up to 100 words highlighting their child’s finest academic accomplishments from the 2014-2015 school year (, between April 7 and October 1, 2015.

    *Sweepstakes open only to individual legal residents of the six (6) New England states (CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, VT) who have attained the age of majority in their state of residence as of the date of entry. Participants in the Revolution clinic must be between the ages of six and 17. This Sweepstakes begins at 9:00 a.m. (ET) on April 7, 2015 and ends at 5:00 p.m. (ET) on October 1, 2015 (the “Sweepstakes Period”).

    Who: New England parents and their children, ages six through 17

    When: Scholars selected at random from entries on a rolling basis; one winner per each New England Revolution home game
    Now through October 1, 2015

    Where: Matches held at: Gillette Stadium, 1 Patriot Pl, Foxborough, MA 02035

    Enter online:


  24. May 4, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    Gator Grins returns to the Gateway Complex

    Huntington – Gator Grins—the school-based dental services program in the Gateway Regional School District—is returning from Chester Elementary school and will begin clinic hours on Tuesday, May 12 with students at Gateway complex and Littleville elementary.

    Once staff are back on the Gateway campus, the program will operate Tuesdays and Thursdays until the end of the school year and start up again in September. Gator Grins will be serving students attending Littleville Elementary School, Gateway Regional Middle School, and the Jr./Sr. High School.

    Both Gator Grins and the Gateway School-Based Health Center are operated by Hilltown Community Health Centers, Inc.

    Gator Grins provides comprehensive dental exams, x-rays, dental cleaning, fluoride varnishes, dental sealants, amalgam (silver-colored) and composite (white) fillings and emergency dental care. Students who need more extensive treatment are referred to Huntington or Worthington Health Center where they would be accompanied by their parents/caregivers. Services are funded through grants and insurance billing; no student is denied dental care because of an inability to pay. Under the direction of HCHC’s Dental Department Director, Dr. MaryLou Stuart, Gator Grins Director Dr. Emily Bowden, registered dental hygienists Liz Spooner and Lori Paquette, dental assistant Susan Hedges, coordinator Kristen Brakey and Program Manager Kiirsten Cooper.

    Over its first few years, the program has grown to serve over 400 Gateway students. In addition, as more students receive routine and preventative dental care on a regular basis, the resources required for restorative (fillings) work has decreased substantially.

    In addition to providing comprehensive dental care, staff from Gator Grins is also available to do classroom educational demonstrations if requested by teachers.

    Parents who wish to enroll their child(ren) into Gator Grins need to complete a permission form and medical history, which are available on the Gateway website (, under the Parents & Students drop-down menu > forms) or the website or by contacting the people listed below. If your child has an existing treatment plan that needs to be signed, please do so as soon as possible. Gator Grins cannot begin treatment on any student without permission.

    Please contact Kristen Brakey, Gator Grins program coordinator (413) 667-3009, ext. 239 or Kirsten Cooper at (413) 667-1042 ext. 103 if you have questions.


  25. April 24, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    The Hitchcock Center is breaking ground! Amherst, MA

    On May 1, 2015, the Hitchcock Center for the Environment will break ground for a world-class environmental center designed and constructed to the world’s toughest standards for sustainable development. The 9000 square-foot Center will be New England’s first public environmental education facility to join the Living Building Challenge™, 20 performance standards that require buildings to be self-sufficient for energy and water and to meet strict requirements for green materials and for the quality of its indoor environment. Worldwide, fewer than ten buildings have been fully certified as living buildings. Speakers include Senator Stanley Rosenberg, Representative Ellen Story, Acting Commissioner Dan Burgess of the MA Department of Energy Resources, Jonathan Lash, President of Hampshire College and other community representatives. Read more here. Please join us on May 1, 2015 at 4:30pm. RSVP via email or by calling 413-256-6006. Parking provided at the Red Barn at Hampshire College.


  26. April 17, 2015 at 3:57 pm

    Northampton Mayor’s Youth Commission Announces BenchWalk 2015
    An event aimed at bringing art to the downtown area and celebrating Northampton

    Today, the Northampton Mayor’s Youth Commission announced BenchWalk 2015, The Summer Festival, a celebration of art and public space. BenchWalk is a public art project funded by local businesses, organizations, and residents. Artists and Northampton schools will be invited to create unique and imaginative paintings on the benches of downtown Northampton later this spring. Awards will be given to the artists for originality and creativity.

    The Youth Commission, through donations from local businesses, will be paying selected artists to paint the benches of downtown Northampton. Each artist will be paid a stipend of $200-$450. Artists will have a period to submit proposals before they are judged by a jury and narrowed down to the best designs. During May, there will be a time period for artists to paint the benches.

    BenchWalk was inspired by a similar project discussed in 2005 by the Youth Commission. Additionally, the recent challenges facing Northampton’s downtown area helped reignite the Youth Commission’s determination to create BenchWalk and celebrate public space.

    The Youth Commission has worked closely with the Northampton Arts Council, Department of Public Works, and Mayor’s Office in designing and launching BenchWalk. Additionally, the Youth Commission has worked with local artist David Teeple, who has played an important role as a mentor and an art expert. He has been an advisor for budgeting, choosing paint, and event logistics.

    Northampton City Council President and Youth Commission Liaison, William H. Dwight strongly endorsed the Youth Commission’s initiative.

    BenchWalk and the Youth Commission’s recent sponsorship and vote in support of the Northampton plastic bag ban join a growing list of initiatives the Youth Commission has worked on to improve their community.

    For artists interested in submitting a proposal and people interested in donating, please visit or email


    The Northampton Youth Commission serves to create a means of communication between city leaders and young people in Northampton. The Northampton Youth Commission is a group of people between the ages of 13 – 18 who are interested in working to improve the lives of young people in the community by discussing issues of concern and working to provide solutions. We are always open to new ideas and suggestions to involve youth in the community.

    For more information contact: or for the Youth Commission and others involved in BenchWalk:
    Jonathan Goldman- or 413-695-8773
    Mariel Lutz-
    Bill Dwight- or 413-262-6710


  27. April 7, 2015 at 11:35 am


    The Franklin Regional Council of Governments’ (FRCOG) Citizen Corps Program will hold a training for medical and non-medical personnel who want to volunteer in times of disaster on
    Saturday, April 25th
    from 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM
    at the Hawlemont Regional School,
    10 School Street, Charlemont, MA 01339.

    Medical Reserve Corps volunteers assist in medical emergencies such as disasters, catastrophic incidents, mass vaccinations and prophylaxis for potential epidemics. Roles are assigned depending on the volunteer’s license, qualifications and training. Medical personnel from all areas are needed but even those without licenses can help in numerous ways.

    There are a set of required classes and then an expectation that the volunteer will keep up with necessary trainings in the future. The MRC holds occasional drills, an annual meeting, and short monthly meetings.
    All volunteers must complete a CORI check, a Personal and Family Preparedness Plan, two Incident Command classes and CPR/First Aid certification (if not already certified) within one year of joining the MRC.

    Registration is required. Questions can be directed to the MRC Coordinator at 413-774-3167 X137 or emailed to


  28. Adam Cohen said,

    March 23, 2015 at 6:52 am

    The Myth of the Perfect Parent:
    How the Buddha’s Teachings on Perception Helps Us See Through This Myth
    Sunday, March 29, 2015, 6:00-7:30pm
    A meditation and discussion with Adi Bemak

    Insight Meditation Center of Pioneer Valley
    Eastworks, 2nd Floor
    116 Pleasant Street
    Suite 242
    Easthampton, MA 01027-2755
    $5-10 optional donation for Insight PV; opportunity to donate to the teacher
    No pre-registration required. Drop-ins welcome.

    Adi Bemak will kick off a five-week series focused on the “Myth of the Perfect Parent”, hosted by the Insight PV parent meditation group. You are welcome to attend any and all weeks.

    The weeks in April will be facilitated by members of the Insight PV parent group, exploring such topics as:
    What does it mean to be a “good enough” parent?
    Reconciling work/life priorities as a parent
    What expectations do we have at different development stages? (pregnancy, birth, baby, pre-school, adolescent, adult)
    How to accept ourselves as we are, while at the same time being open to change?

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Monica Moran said,

    March 3, 2015 at 11:38 am

    The pizza party fundraiser for Hilltown Safety at Home will be from 6-9pm at the VFW in Russell this Friday, March 6th. It is sponsored by Friends of Hilltown Safety at Home. For more information call Phil at 413-977-1234 or email


  30. Monica Moran said,

    March 3, 2015 at 11:34 am

    Come to a family friendly pizza party fundraiser this Friday at the VFW in Russell! There will be music and lots and lots of raffles. There will be pizza, veggies, salad, and desserts! Kids under 5 come for free. Others pay $10 per person or $25 for a family. All money raised will go to Hilltown Safety at Home, which funds a domestic violence advocate in the hilltowns.


  31. February 27, 2015 at 11:04 am


    Please come to one of the following registration sessions:

    Wednesday March 4 from 9:00 am – 12:00 noon
    Thursday March 5 from 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
    Saturday March 7 from 10 am – 12:00 noon

    All Sessions to be held at: JFK Middle School’s Community Room, 100 Bridge Road, Florence, MA.

    Family-friendly activities from 10:00 a.m. to noon March 7 to coincide with kindergarten registration. Activities include a local storyteller, story time, other fun activities, and a chance to practice getting on and off a school bus.

    Save Time: Download Registration Forms online: http://northampton-

    Required Documents: child’s original birth certificate, proof of residency (1 of the following: utility bill, mortgage/tax payment, signed lease, bank/credit card statement, pay stub), child’s health record: BOTH immunizations and proof of a physical exam, parent’s photo id.

    General Questions? Ball Barbara Black, Early Childhood Coordinator at (413) 587-1471. Registration Questions? Call Jennifer Towler, Registrar at (413) 587-1328


  32. writerjax said,

    February 24, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    The Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts Scholarship Committee announces scholarship applications are now available online at Applications will also be available through guidance departments at high schools in Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin Counties, or by contacting the Ad Club at 413-736-2582.

    Western Massachusetts seniors who plan to attend an accredited college or technical school to study advertising, communications, marketing or graphics arts and will be attending in September 2015 are encouraged to apply. The scholarship must be applied against tuition and fees at the school. Candidates will be judged on academic performance, extracurricular activities, community service and/or work experience, a demonstrated interest in advertising, communications, marketing or graphic design, personal recommendations, and a letter of introduction outlining future plans.

    In 2015, one $1000 scholarship will be awarded. Completed scholarship applications and all support materials must be submitted to the Ad Club and postmarked by Friday, February 27, 2015. Scholarship decisions are made by the Scholarship Committee of Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts, and are considered final. The scholarship will be awarded at the Ad Club’s Creative Awards show in May.


  33. February 22, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    30th Annual Maple Fest and Craft Fair

    Chester, Massachusetts, a small town in the foothills of the Berkshires, is celebrating the beginning of spring with a Festival. March is the month that heralds the start of the sugaring season, as days warm and lengthen, and the first signs of spring become visible .You are invited to visit Chester Center to experience old time sugaring first hand and relive simpler times.

    Come to the hills to cure your cabin fever and spend a day in the country, on Saturday, March 21, 2015, as the Chester Hill Association sponsors its 30th Annual Maple Fest, from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M., on the Skyline Trail in old Chester Center.

    Begin your day with a traditional Country Breakfast consisting of pancakes, scrambled eggs, ham, juice, coffee and featuring local maple syrup. Breakfast will be served continuously from 9:00 A.M. ‘til noon at the First Congregational Church. The cost for adults is $8.00 and $5.00 for children under 10. After breakfast, visit local artisans and craftspeople, at the old schoolhouse across the road.

    Begin the afternoon listening to the sound of the Pioneer Valley Fiddlers, scheduled to play at the church at noon. Enjoy farm animals, check out a working fire truck and marvel at furniture made from tree branches. All day long, wagons pulled by tractors will carry guests back and forth to High Meadows Sugar House to observe the production of maple syrup. This year we will again offer wagon rides powered by a team of draft horses. In addition, the children will be able to ride through the snowy fields on sleds pulled by snowmobiles.

    Latecomers to the Maple Fest may purchase coffee, soft drinks, hot dogs, hamburgers, fries and the famous Chester Chili from the food cart throughout the day. Also, be sure to purchase your raffle tickets- the prizes feature unique local products, gift certificates and a large basket of Chester Hill products.

    The Chester Hill Association, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the history and traditions of the area, is the sponsor for this event. The Chester Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, partially funds the Maple Fest.


  34. Toni said,

    February 10, 2015 at 2:09 pm

    Hilltown Community Development Corporation is now accepting applications for an affordable housing lottery.

    Apartments are located in Haydenville, Williamsburg, and Chesterfield, and include all newly renovated and affordable studio, 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroom sized units.

    There are mobility and sensory adapted units available. Income restrictions apply; this is an equal housing opportunity.

    Units will become available between April 1, 2015-Feb. 2016.

    Applications can be mailed or emailed, or found at local town offices and libraries. Tenants will be chosen through a lottery in June 2015. The application deadline is Friday, May 8, 2015.

    Please contact Teri at 413-296-4536 x110 or for more information, or visit for an application.


  35. February 3, 2015 at 12:31 pm

    The Gateway Regional Guidance Department invites area eighth grade students and their parents/guardians to an informative presentation on the transition from junior high school to Gateway Regional High School.

    This event will be held on Thursday, February 26 from 6:30-8:00 p.m. Students, parents and guardians will meet the high school guidance counselors, learn about the course scheduling process and graduation requirements, and discover high school clubs and activities. Current high school students will also serve on a Question and Answer panel, and will answer student and parent questions about the high school experience. Guided tours of the building will take place at the end of the presentation.

    Students who are applying to area vocational schools are also encouraged to attend the information session, although students applying to a vocational school for the fall MUST have their application materials into the guidance office by March 2nd in order to be eligible..

    If you are planning to attend, please RSVP for the February 26th event by calling the high school guidance office at (413) 685-1107 or emailing


  36. January 29, 2015 at 12:39 pm

    6th Grade Openings!
    The Hilltown Cooperative Charter Public School, now located in Easthampton, is expanding its 6th grade class and has a number of openings in that grade this year in addition to the usual Kindergarten spaces.
    The lottery is February 5, so applications need to be turned in by Feb. 4. You can find them and more information about the school at: .


  37. January 23, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    Archery Classes in Florence

    From: [] On Behalf Of Kyle Bissell
    Sent: Wednesday, January 21, 2015 12:02 PM
    Subject: Winter Archery: Instructor Cert. Course, New Sessions, Winter Camp.
    ***Hello Archers!

    1). Level I USA Archery Instructor Certification course. 9AM-5PM, Saturday, February 7 at our Florence range. $100 plus $25 for educational materials. E-mail Kyle to register or for more information. For people 15 years of age and older.

    2). New Winter Sessions begin the week of February 10. Reserve your space online. Held at our indoor heated 221 Pine Street location, Florence.

    3). February Vacation Archery Camp is filling up! Check it out and reserve your space soon. Mon-Fri., Feb 16-20. 8:30-3:00. Ages 7 – up.

    I hope you are all well!


    Kyle Forbes Bissell, M.Ed., Level III USA Archery Coach
    Amherst Archery Academy, LLC.
    (774) 261 – 3399
    Like us on Facebook


  38. January 22, 2015 at 11:37 am

    Homeschool Ice Skating tomorrow FRIDAY Jan 23 2015 UMASS Mullins Ctr in Amherst for families


    Date: Tuesday, 20 January 2015, 9:05 am
    Cost $5.00 per child, this includes ice skates no extra cost.
    Adults are FREE, this included ice skates no extra cost.
    According to the web site
    Cost is $5.00 per child
    Fri, Jan 23, 2015 11:00 AM – 12:50 PM
    Fri, Jan 30, 2015 11:00 AM – 12:50 PM
    BRING COINS for the meters nickels, dimes and quarters. Quarters will give you 15 minutes of time.
    Bring cash. However, Brad will accept check too.
    Don’t go near the Zamboni PLEASE. OFF Limits to non employees. Do not take out AHA buckets. You may bring your own CLEAN buckets. Buckets are good for new ice skaters to learn. Sorry.
    NO street shoes on the ice. Dirt, stones, rocks and salt ruins the ice.
    Check the PVHG WEB SITE in case of changes.
    New beginners might wear snow pants. It makes falling less painful and more fun to fall. Wear mittens or gloves to protect them. Your welcome to wear a bike helmet or hockey helmet. Optional.
    NO LAYING DOWN on the ice. Kids can get hurt from the blades.
    Bring your own water and snacks. Vending machines do not always work. I think they take quarters and dollars.
    Put your name on your stuff with phone number (it helps). Check lost and found if you come often.
    Parking at meters only in front and back of building.


  39. Jill Wheat said,

    January 15, 2015 at 10:56 am

    Preschool/Toddler Music Group Update: This group has switched from Thursday to SUNDAY afternoons from 3:30PM-4:30PM with about 30-45min’s of lead music/movement activity & about 30-15min’s of free play. Starts 1/18

    This is a parent/child group meaning that parents actively participate in singing/moving activities with the child they bring. Free play happens for a short time afterwards but not during the guided music time. It works best with children at least 2 years old up to 5 years but other ages are welcome with parent adaptations. 5 Sundays starting 1/18 at 215 Richview Ave, North Adams in the downstairs studio room. 3 children will make this happen. Please spread the word………Hope you can make it!

    Pre-Registration required please by 1/16 so that we know if the group will run & planning can happen. Email Jill to pre-register & for more info or go to the website link.


  40. Monica Moran said,

    January 13, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    Do you know where to get help if you or someone you know is being hurt by a partner? 74% of hilltowners do!! Help us raise that to 100%! Tell your friends and family members about these confidential resources in the hilltowns:

    Hilltown Safety at Home: cell 413-559-8039 or office 413-685-3911
    (domestic violence advocate who can meet at a safe place in the hilltowns)
    Safe Passage: 888-345-5282 (24/7 hotline) and services in Northampton
    Center for Women and Comm: 888-337-0800 (24/7 hotline) and services in Amherst and Huntington
    GLBTQ Domestic Violence Project: 800-832-1901
    Moving Forward (for offenders): 888-636-9050

    Thank you!
    Monica Moran for the Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force
    Visit us on Facebook at Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force or email us at


  41. January 12, 2015 at 3:12 pm

    Parents of students living in the Gateway Regional School District are advised that applications are now available for students interested in applying to Smith Vocational or Westfield Vocational High Schools for the 2015-16 school year. Applications are available in the Jr. High School Guidance Office for 8th student. Current high school students who wish to apply for a vocational school next year may contact the high school guidance office (413) 685-1107.


  42. Diane said,

    January 6, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    PARENTS: Are you looking for something constructive for your kids to do?

    KIDS: Bored? Want someone to hang out with and have fun?

    The Youth Mentoring Program of CCB is looking to match school-age children with a mature, caring adult to spend time at a community organization once a week. For more information please contact Diane Morris at or 413-663-6593 ext. 39. You can also download an application at We hope to hear from you soon!


  43. Hilltown CDC said,

    December 26, 2014 at 8:05 am

    Public Hearing
    Monday January 12, 2015, 6:00 pm
    For the planning of the FY15 CDBG grant.
    Participating communities: Chesterfield, Cummington, Goshen, Peru,
    Plainfield, Williamsburg and Worthington
    Where: Town of Chesterfield Selectboard Meeting Room

    Come share your input on proposed projects:
    – Housing Rehabilitation
    – Hilltown Elder Network
    – Health Outreach Program for Elders
    – Hilltown Food Pantry
    – Childcare Subsidy Program

    Your participation and input on these programs is greatly appreciated! If you cannot make the hearing, but would like to provide input, please contact Bea by Friday January 9th at 413-296-4536, ext. 115 or


  44. December 15, 2014 at 2:51 pm

    The Gateway Family Center in Huntington, MA, receives many requests during the holidays for socks, sized from infant through adult. That’s why Meghan Crane and Grace LeBarron, 8th are heading up a sock drive for the Gateway Family Center. From now through January 12, new socks may be donated at collection boxes throughout the Gateway hilltowns. All donated socks will be distributed through the Gateway Family Center.

    Donations boxes are located at Gateway Regional High School, Littleville Elementary School, Chester Elementary School, and Porter Memorial Library in Blandford. If you have any questions, please email


  45. Sheri Levson said,

    November 13, 2014 at 10:35 am

    AUDITIONS FOR FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, Dec 7 at 3:30pm and Dec 10 at 7pm – Open auditions for anyone age 9 and older. Males, ages 14 – 35 who can learn to dance, are especially encouraged to audition! Please prepare a song that is NOT from Fiddler! An accompanist will be provided. Bring sheet music and wear comfortable clothes and shoes. Auditions, rehearsals, and performances will be at Sinai Temple, 1100 Dickinson St., Springfield, MA

    Performance dates are March 26-29, 2015. For more information contact Sheri Levson 413-736-3619 or

    Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Broadway premier!


  46. November 7, 2014 at 3:18 pm

    The Northern Berkshire Neighbors program of the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition is seeking community-minded individuals to take part in a free Community Outreach and Civic Engagement training program. Ideal participants must be committed to making positive change in the Northern Berkshires and learning how to assist residents in accessing available services.

    The training will take place over a 6-month period and meet every Thursday from 5:30pm to 8pm beginning February 19, 2015. As part of the training, participants will learn of the many health and human service providers and community organizations in the northern Berkshire region. In addition, participants will engage in workshops and training on topics such as different styles of leadership, accessing local government, public speaking, community organizing, conflict management, how to create a neighborhood association and other related topics. In addition to the training, participants will be broken into groups to complete a community project of their choosing, aimed at meeting and/or addressing a community need.

    A letter of interest is required to register for the training. Please send a letter of interest and your full contact information to 61 Main Street, Suite 218, North Adams, MA 01247 or email no later than January 20, 2015. For more information, call Jess or Annie at 413-663-7588.


  47. November 3, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    GREAT BARRINGTON, MASS., November 3, 2014—Nearly fifty years after becoming America’s first early college, Bard College at Simon’s Rock will establish the nation’s first ninth and tenth grade program that enables both boarding and day students to receive their associate of arts degree in just four years.
    Bard Academy at Simon’s Rock, located in Great Barrington, Mass., will welcome its first ninth-grade class in the fall of 2015, according to Leon Botstein, president of Bard College. Upon completing the tenth grade, Academy students begin full-time college study at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, earning their AA after two years and, in the case of over half the college’s students, their bachelor of arts degree after two more.
    In 1979, Bard joined with Simon’s Rock Early College, founded in Great Barrington in 1966 by pioneering educator Elizabeth Blodgett Hall for students who wanted to start college in their junior year of high school. Today, Bard College at Simon’s Rock enrolls 350 students. Most Simon’s Rock graduates proceed to earn graduate degrees at highly selective universities. Alumni include seven Fulbright Fellows, one Rhodes Scholar, a MacArthur Fellow and six alumni on the Forbes 30 under 30. The Princeton Review recently rated Simon’s Rock higher than Harvard, Yale or Princeton for academics.
    Bard Academy at Simon’s Rock will be modeled in part after the Bard High School Early Colleges (BHSEC), alternative public schools in New York City, Newark, and Cleveland, where students complete both high school and the associate of arts degree in four years. In 2012-13, BHSEC Manhattan was ranked as one of highest performing public high schools in New York City, with an A grade, from the New York City Department of Education.
    “Bard Academy at Simon’s Rock is a reflection of the tremendous success experienced by the BHSECs, which, in turn, owe their existence to the achievements of Simon’s Rock,” said President Botstein, who is also a professor of arts and humanities at Bard and music director of the American Symphony Orchestra. “The addition of the ninth and tenth grades completes Simon’s Rock’s standing as the senior and flagship protagonist of the early college movement.”
    The dean of Bard Academy will be Ian Bickford, a Bard College at Simon’s Rock graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of California at Berkeley, a master’s degree at Stanford University, and his doctorate at the City University of New York.

    Dr. Bickford, a former professor of English at Bard College at Simon’s Rock and BSHEC Queens, points out that the Academy will better prepare students to enter and thrive in college after just two years of high school. The Academy program will capitalize on the intellectual strengths of the College: seminar-style classes that offer authentic exchange among students; a curriculum that embraces clear writing as both a means to and a reflection of clear thinking; a commitment to interdisciplinary inquiry; and opportunities for sustained, independent research by students.
    “The traditional high school structure can be drawn out and wasteful, with the last two years devoted to students preparing for standardized testing, filling out college applications, and taking courses merely to enhance their admission prospects,” he says. “We’re looking for students who want to take control of their education, who are intellectually ambitious and curious, who feel frustrated at being told to wait, students who would be better served interacting with teachers who are experts in their fields.”
    While the new academy will share the college’s philosophy, faculty, and state-of-the-art facilities on a bucolic 275-acre campus, its students will reside in a separate dormitory with a dedicated residential staff and study their own liberal arts and sciences curriculum. Academy students will be assigned a faculty advisor, while students in the College will serve as role models and mentors, providing academic tutoring and advice.
    Dr. Bickford notes that all members of the Academy and the College are taught by faculty who have earned the highest degrees in their fields. “Who better, after all, to help students prepare for college than their future college professors?” he notes.
    Peter Laipson, Provost of Bard College at Simon’s Rock said in summation, “The new entry point to Simon’s Rock offered by the Academy enriches our longstanding mission to provide students the opportunity to begin college at a younger age in the company of intellectual and social peers. Elizabeth Blodgett Hall founded Simon’s Rock because she believed that the educational path most students followed was a waste of their time and talents. She realized that they were eager to do much more sophisticated work than was asked or expected of them, especially in the last two years of high school. She was right, and both Simon’s Rock and the institutions it has inspired and helped lead – the BHSECs – demonstrate convincingly that we have a better model. We take younger students seriously as thinkers and provide them opportunities to engage with challenging ideas and questions. In turn, they demonstrate a truly remarkable capacity for deep, rigorous, and independent thought.”

    Prospective Academy students and parents are invited to visit the school’s Web page at, call 1-800-235-7186 or email for more information or to schedule a visit. An information session and reception will be held at the campus on 84 Alford Road in Great Barrington, MA on November 10 from 4p.m.-6p.m. and is open to educators, community members and the general public. Attendees are asked to RSVP to


    Kimberly Rock
    Director of Communications
    Bard College at Simon’s Rock
    (413) 528-7229


  48. October 9, 2014 at 8:18 am

    Tidying the East Branch Trail Workday
    Join us Saturday October 11th 9am. – 1pm.
    Bring your gloves, shovels & sense of humor
    Meet at the TTOR Chesterfield Gorge parking area
    Sign up by calling 413 623-2070


  49. Rachel Jones said,

    September 30, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    Good Morning,

    My name is Rachel Jones and I am the Director of the Gateway to College Program at Springfield Technical Community College. This is a scholarship program for Springfield students, ages 16-20, who have dropped out of school or at-risk of not completing high school, but have a desire to get back on track and earn a diploma and go to college. What makes Gateway to College truly unique is that our students will not only have a chance to earn a high school diploma, but Gateway participants will also be earning college credits toward an associate’s degree or certificate here at STCC.

    Gateway to College at STCC is an educational alternative for young motivated people who may not have had success in other learning environments. Gateway to College students, can expect to be challenged, just as any high school or college student would be. Our philosophy as a program and as a staff is that all students have the ability to achieve academic success and deserve the highest quality of education. We just ask that students are willing to focus and work hard.

    Students selected to participate in the Gateway to College Scholarship program will have no out of pocket expenses for their tuition, fees, or books while participating in the program. In addition to academic and financial assistance, students will have an Academic Counselor dedicated to their success. The Academic Counselor guides students through the college experience as an advisor, instructor and a mentor. They will assist students with different facets of the college experience -everything from teaching students about careers and time management to providing referrals to community resources.

    We encourage you to pass along this information and the attached brochure to any young person who may be a good fit for this terrific opportunity and please feel free to contact us for more
    information at 413-755-4581, stop by our office on campus in building 16 (Garvey Hall) room 285 or

    If you’d like for me to come to speak with potential students and/or your staff, please let me know. Also, we’d love if you were able to include our program information on your website as another resource for young people.


    Rachel Jones

    Director, Gateway to College


  50. September 16, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    WILLIAMSBURG CULTURAL COUNCIL The Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.


    The Williamsburg CC has set an October 15 postmark deadline for organizations, schools and individuals to apply for grants that support cultural activities in the community. These grants can support a variety of artistic projects and activities in Williamsburg.

    For specific guidelines and complete information on the Williamsburg Cultural Council, contact the Council at: Application forms and more information about the Local Cultural Council Program are available online at Application forms are also available at Meekins Library and the Town Clerk’s office.


  51. September 11, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Great Job opportunity for sharing your enthusiasm for health and food. Flexibility on hours, days. Qualities sought: Cook/ teacher/ food coop organizer/ gardener/ health & nutrition coach. Mainly Cook, able to feed 30+ efficiently, familiar with commercial kitchen equipment, good at meats as well as vegetarian dishes. Passed CORI check & ServSafe. Good at independent initiative.
    Where: Middlefield Ma (Western Mass), beautiful country location with dining hall and community kitchen of a nonprofit members’ organization (Blossom Center), plus employee wellness program for 20-person businesses ( & Abyss Distribution). See for place.
    Call Marin (Tamarin) at AzureGreen 413-623-2155 x111 for info or interview.


  52. September 4, 2014 at 8:34 pm

    The Garden: A Center for Grieving Children and Teens opens October 19, 2014 for new and returning bereaved families. All families with children ages 5-18 who have experienced the death of a close family member are invited to be a part of this support group free of charge.

    Children meet in small groups participating in projects; games and activities meant to facilitate their grieving process and led by trained and supervised adult volunteers. Adult family members meet separately with other caregivers to talk about how to support their children, who may or may not outwardly show their grief.

    The Garden will provide bereavement support at no cost to families with young children from throughout the Hampshire and Franklin counties All groups are held at the Hampshire Regional YMCA in Northampton on Sunday afternoons.

    Families are encouraged to call immediately to schedule an intake interview or obtain more information. Contact Shelly Bathe Lenn at 413 584 7086 or via email


  53. Lezlie Densmore said,

    September 1, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Every year, volunteers from La Leche League organize a Nursing Mothers’ Booth at the Big E in West Springfield, MA.The fair runs from Sept 12 – 28 this year. Typically 1600 people will use this space over the 17 day fair. We also hand out breastfeeding information sheets and contact info for Leaders in MA, RI, CT, and VT.
    We need volunteers to help staff the booth. I’ve got some of the schedule filled in with last year’s volunteers, but we need more help. Please consider volunteering for a 4 hour shift. I have free tickets and parking passes for the volunteers and you’re welcome to explore the fair the rest of the day. If you have a small child and can only cover 2 hours, that’s fine as well.
    All that’s required is to greet mothers, hand out LLL information, keep an eye on the booth. We want mothers and their families to feel welcome. If you know someone that might be interested, please give them my email address.

    Lezlie Densmore
    LLL Big E coordinator


  54. August 12, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    Parent-Child Home Program
    Free Books! Free Toys! Fun Activities!
    We can enhance the skills you already give your child.

    Help your child get ready for school by reading and playing with them! The Parent-Child Home
    Program can show you how, through half-hour home visits scheduled at your convenience. A trained home visitor can work with you and your child on skills to support their success in school. Best of all, you get to keep the high-quality books and toys they bring, completely free! Eligible children are between 16 and 36 months. Now enrolling for the new program year beginning in September!!
    Space is limited; call Chiara at 413-664-4821.


  55. August 12, 2014 at 3:23 pm

    Please help, Mrs. Cimini (me) get her classroom ready for school… Consider donating to We’ve Got the Right Stuff a DONORS CHOOSE Classroom Project!
    I am 4th grade teacher at Craneville Elementary School in the Central Berkshire Regional School District who needs your help! To learn more about the details of this project, please read below or follow the provided project link: (you can also copy and paste the link into your web browser)… Thank you!
    What is your fondest memory of school? My hopes and dreams are for ALL my students to remember wanting to come to school ready to learn each day, knowing that they were cared for, trusted, believed in, and greeted each day where they are socially, emotionally, academically, and physically.
    My students take on the roles of a Reading and Writing Workshop Model, Responsive Classroom. They are the creators, drivers, and believers behind how our classroom looks like, feels like, and sounds like throughout our day, every day! They are the facilitators in their learning and I am their guide in their success and growth. A Growth mindset! I not only challenge myself, but also my students to stop thinking about each school subject, content area as segregated learning, instead we will be challenged to see how each subject is relevant to one another and to the real world. Our reading block is not just reading the way we remember it, instead it is a cross curricular LITERACY block, learning across the genres, including Social Studies/History, Science/Engineering, Mathematics, and English Language Arts. We are a blended classroom – traditional, digital; built and based on rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher-order thinking skills!
    Imagine taking the ultimate United States of America field trip. In our classroom students will do just this. The following is a description of variety of materials I am requesting and how students will use them in the classroom. It begins with book boxes that will be able to hold 60 nonfiction textbooks, picture books, National Geographic books, DK Eyewitness books on US states, national parks, national landmarks, symbols, and our democracy. Students will explore North America with the requested atlases, puzzles, games, activities, flashcards, coloring books, and more. Now imagine science without any experiments. Not in this room! I’ve requested science station kits where students will become weather and climate experts, build weather stations, listen to and record live meteorologist broadcasts on iPads with the new earbuds/mics I have added to our cart; science kits so students can build and understand electrical and magnetic circuits and generate light, sound, and heat energy.
    In addition to content coverage, students will systematically acquire knowledge in literature and other disciplines through reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Students will be college and career ready by focusing on complex texts outside of literature, this will also ensure students are being prepared to read, write, and research across the curriculum, including history and science. « hide
    My students need a digital and print library, and resources for an integrated, multi-sensory E.L.A., Math, Social Studies/History and Science/Engineering Curriculum!

    Project: Link:


  56. August 6, 2014 at 5:04 pm

    to raise funds & awareness for Autism in Western Massachusetts
    benefiting Community Resources for People with Autism

    Saturday, August 16th

    Start location: East Longmeadow Senior Center

    End location: Millside Park, 2 Ferry Street, Easthampton (behind the American Legion)

    Registration Motorcycle Ride (East Longmeadow) 9:30am – 11:00am
    Motorcycle Ride (East Longmeadow to Easthampton) 11:30am – 1:00pm
    BBQ & Family Fun Day (Easthampton): 12 noon – 3pm

    Get your motors running! And raise funds and awareness for Autism in Western Mass! Community Resources for People with Autism is benefiting from the American Legion Riders’ Ride For Autism. The motorcycle ride starts with Registration, coffee and donuts at the East Longmeadow Senior Center. Kickstands go up at 11:30 a.m. and the whole thing ends in Easthampton in Millside Park. Millside Park is behind the American Legion Hall on Pleasant Street and snuggled between the Manhan Rail Bike Path and Easthampton’s Lower Mill Pond, making it easy for families to get to walking, biking, by car, or even canoe!

    Participating in the ride is $30 (including BBQ & Family Fun Day). Tickets are also available for the BBQ alone and are $15 for adults and $10 for kids (12 & under). The Family Fun Day with music, crafts, and bounce castle is free for everyone! The Ride for Autism’s Family Fun Day is a fun way to raise money and awareness for individuals with autism in western Mass Everyone is invited to join for music, barbeque, a bounce castle, raffle prizes from area businesses, and crafts!

    All proceeds will go to Community Resources for People with Autism programming. Community Resources for People with Autism provides support, practical help, information, and advocacy to over 1,600 families in all four counties of western Massachusetts.

    Register online today by visiting


  57. farmerbsm said,

    August 3, 2014 at 4:42 pm

    Red Gate Farm is using Kickstarter to raise money for Buckland-Sheburne Elementary students to participate in a overnight school visit next spring. We are looking for pledges and help spreading the word! Check it out!


  58. July 23, 2014 at 4:49 pm

    Teen volunteer opportunities!

    Eastern States Exposition’s Storrowton Village Museum is extending an invitation to individuals ages 14 and up to volunteer as costumed guides in our classic 1800s village during The Big E.

    Volunteers are needed to act as hosts, conducting guided tours of the Village’s historic buildings and to work in the Village Gift Shop during this year’s Big E, Sept. 12 – 28, 2014. Training sessions for prospective volunteers begin Wednesday, August 20. To participate, volunteers must complete a Volunteer Interest Form and schedule an in-person interview with a Storrowton Village staff member. Selected volunteers must be available to attend all three training sessions which take place August 20, August 27, and September 3 at 1pm and 6pm.

    Village volunteers dress in Early American-inspired apparel to give fairgoers a glimpse of New England’s past. Interpreting the roles of 19th century New Englanders, volunteers will gain a wealth of knowledge about crafts, food and daily life of the era while participating in the excitement of The Big E.

    Costumes, parking and admission for volunteers on-duty will be provided by The Big E as well as a 25 percent discount on items purchased at the gift shops operated by Storrowton Village. Volunteers will also have the opportunity to attend the staff field trip, picnic and the annual Big E staff party.

    Volunteering at Storrowton Village is a rewarding experience. Past volunteers have said that the interaction with the public and other Village volunteers and the friendships they make is the most memorable part of their commitment to the Village.

    For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Storrowton Village Museum before August 15, 2014 at 413-205-5051, weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.


  59. July 10, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    Become a Parent Aide! For over 31 years, the PAVE program has been providing home-based support to Hampshire Cty. parents who are stressed & often isolated from a supportive community. The program’s goal is to strengthen & empower parents by giving them new tools to help them in their parenting journey. Compassion, common sense & the ability to listen to a parent are required. Berkshire Children & Families will provide the training & supervision. Volunteer 3-5 hours per week. Sept. training now forming. No commitment required until after you have completed the training. For more information, call Lydia at Berkshire Children & Families 413-584-5690 Ext. 144 or email


  60. July 9, 2014 at 10:57 am

    Senate Passes Bill to Assist Individuals with Autism

    The Massachusetts Senate on Tuesday, July 8, 2014, unanimously passed a bill to expand treatment and support for individuals with autism or a developmental disability across the Commonwealth, State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D- Pittsfield) announced.

    The bill creates a 35-member commission on autism within the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to make recommendations about how to improve the services for individuals with autism spectrum disorders and to monitor the implementation of policies impacting individuals with autism spectrum disorders.

    It requires MassHealth to cover medically necessary treatments for individuals who are diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, including services for applied behavior analysis.

    The bill expands the types of services that are available through the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) to an individual with a developmental disability, as well as requires DDS and the Department of Mental Health to collaborate to ensure that the needs of individuals with both a developmental disability and a mental illness are met.

    Additionally, the bill requires programs that provide residential or day care services and treatment for persons with a developmental disability to obtain a license from DDS. It also requires DDS to provide transportation for education, day care or treatment as part of the department’s community developmental disability services.

    To help support a successful learning environment, the bill requires administrators and teachers to have training in strategies for effective inclusive schooling for children with autism. Additionally, the bill creates an endorsement in autism through the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education for licensed special education teachers who complete the necessary coursework and field experiences in order to address the specific educational needs of students with autism. It also authorizes the Board to issue an autism endorsement to current special education teachers who work with students with autism and effectively demonstrate the knowledge, skills and competencies to fulfill this authorization.

    The Senate and House of Representatives will now form a conference committee to produce a compromise bill for final passage and consideration of the Governor.


  61. July 6, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    Historical Museum
    Edwin Smith Historical Museum

    The Edwin Smith Historical Museum is a treasure trove of Westfield history dating back to Westfield ‘s colonial settlement in the 1600s. Opened in 1927 and named in honor of Edwin Smith, the co-founder of the H.B. Smith Company.

    Some of the Westfield History Museum treasures include:

    Original documents from General George Washington and John Hancock
    The 1634 Pulpit Bible used by Reverend Edward Taylor, First Pastor of the Church of Westfield
    Westfield maps
    Historical toys
    Buggy whips made in Westfield

    Hours: Wednesdays 4:00 pm-7:00 pm and Saturdays 12:00 pm-4:00 pm. or by appointment

    Visit Westfield History Digital Collection:

    Closed on all library holidays. To schedule a tour of the Historical Museum, please call Kate Deviny at 413-562-0716.



  62. June 30, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    Today is the last day to tell your State Senator not to take away local zoning boards’ ability to regulate antenna placement in our communities!

    The MA Senate is scheduled to vote on its Economic Bill Tuesday July 1.

    The MA House version passed already, with a pro-industry provision that strips communities of local zoning rights.

    The Senate has a stand-alone version S2183. Link to letter from Massachusetts Municipal Association to Senate:

    Please email MA Senators today and re-iterate the MMA recommendation:

    “Please oppose any attempt to pass S. 2183 or any amendment to the Senate’s economic development bill that would strip cities and towns of the ability to regulate wireless antennas. The Legislature should wait until the FCC makes its final ruling on national standards.”;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

    Jonathan Mirin and Godeliève Richard
    Directors, Piti Théâtre Company
    413 625 6569

    ​EMF Resources:
    Bee Week: Springfield, July 7 – 12 –


  63. June 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm

    The Hilltown Community Health Centers’ Family Support program and the Prison Birth Project (Amherst, MA) were the recipients of a generous gift from Network Health of sixty breastpumps. Magaly Colon, Senior Community Relations Representative for Network Health, personally delivered the breastpumps to the Gateway Family Center on Tuesday, June 24th. Hilltown Community Health Centers’ Family Support Director Kim Savery and Prison Birth Project Leadership Circle member Eli Stark (also of the Hilltown Community Health Centers Chesterfield office) gratefully received them. These breastpumps are for families in the hilltowns as well as incarcerated and formerly incarcerated mothers.

    Hilltown Community Health Centers’ Family Support Program offers free services to new and expectant mothers, including Childbirth Education, The Happiest Baby on the Block classes, Brazleton Newborn Behavioral Observations, Home Visiting and Support, Ages and Stages Developmental Questionnaires, Parent and Family Education and support groups. In addition, the Gateway Family Center offers Parent Child Playgroups, School Readiness, Family and Community Education and social supports. For more information, please contact Kim Savery at 667-2203 or

    The Prison Birth Project (PBP) is an organization that works within a reproductive justice framework to provide support, education, advocacy, and leadership training with people at the intersection of the criminal justice system and motherhood. PBP’s programs include The Doula Project, which provides Doula care to women who are incarcerated at Western Mass Regional Women’s Correctional Center, and Mothers Among Us, a support group that explores the effects of oppression in women’s lives and more. PBP is grateful for the breastpumps which will be given to breastfeeding moms on the inside as well as our members who have come home. For more information visit


  64. June 9, 2014 at 8:14 pm


    This is a friendly reminder that free registration for the 2014 season of ACTh Summer Arts program ends on May 30th.

    There are still a few spaces available in each session and scholarship money is available for families in need of assistance.

    Avoid $10 registration fee and sign up your young artist now!
    Find out our complete program details and register online at:

    Thank you and I hope all are well,

    Rachel Silverman,
    Admin Director
    Ashfield Community Theater
    Summer Arts Program

    A Full Day Visual & Performing Arts Education – Our core mission is to guide creative exploration and growth in a safe and fun environment, enriching the lives of children in the Hilltowns and beyond.



  65. June 5, 2014 at 10:19 am

    Communities That Care Coalition to Present at White House

    The Communities That Care Coalition (CTC) will present at the White House next week at a one-day summit on prevention in education. The summit, on Tuesday June 10th, is being co-hosted by the Federal Department of Education and the Office of National Drug Control Policy, and brings together approximately 30 of the top policy-makers in education and in youth substance abuse prevention.

    The day’s agenda begins with several top policy-makers providing opening remarks, then several prominent researchers will make the case for the importance of prioritizing prevention in education. Next, Kat Allen (FRCOG Partnership for Youth Co-Coordinator and Co-Chair of the Coalition since 2004) will represent the Coalition in a panel of four “successful programs”. The other successful programs are a recovery high school, a school-linked juvenile justice reform program, and a school implementing Brief Screening and Intervention (SBIRT). The rest of the day is dedicated to question and answer with the panelists and open discussion among the group as to how to best integrate prevention into education. The summit organizers have said that they expect this summit will catalyze the prevention platform for the country for the coming years.

    The Communities That Care Coalition is a collaborative of dozens of Franklin County and North Quabbin agencies (including schools, human-service agencies, law enforcement, town government, businesses, faith-based-organizations, the hospital, and more) that works to reduce youth substance use and promote positive youth development. In 2003 the Coalition set out to decrease the following four measures by 10% by 2009: (1) alcohol use in the past 30 days among 8th graders, (2) marijuana use in the past 30 days among 8th graders, (3) tobacco use in the past 30 days among 8th graders, and (4) binge drinking in the past 2 weeks among 12th graders.  These goals were surpassed within the first 3 years of work – largely due to the integration of evidence-based prevention education into schools – and 2013 teen health survey data show that over the course of the decade of the coalition’s work these measures decreased 47%, 48%, 43%, and 46% respectively. These outcomes have caught the attention of the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, the Stanford Social Innovation Review, and most recently the Office of National Drug Control Policy, which led to the White House invitation.

    According to Allen, despite these successes, the coalition recognizes that there is still much work to be done in youth substance abuse prevention in the area, as the current opioid crisis demonstrates: “I am hopeful that next week’s presentation will not only provide the opportunity to give input on national policy, but will also help bring attention and resources to all of the important and effective substance abuse prevention work that is being done in our region and beyond”.


  66. June 5, 2014 at 10:12 am

    SEEKING apartment in the $700 range that allows 1 dog (boxer mix) and 2 cats. Single 26 year old male with great rental history. Can be reached by email


  67. June 4, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    Today, State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D- Pittsfield) and State Representative Stephen Kulik (D- Worthington) presented the new, official Plainfield town flag to the Superintendent of the Bureau of the State House, Tammy Kraus at a ceremony in the Great Hall of Flags in the Massachusetts State House.

    Once properly cataloged by the Bureau, Plainfield’s flag will be added to the impressive array of municipal flags in the Great Hall of Flags to be admired by all State House visitors.

    The Great Hall of Flags serves as the largest function room in the Massachusetts State House. Two decades ago the Bureau began collecting flags from the 351 Commonwealth communities to display them throughout the Great Hall, thereby improving the acoustics of the room. Officials are seeking to complete the collection this year, in time for the 20th anniversary of the program.

    Since 2009 Downing and Kulik have periodically written to Boards of Selectmen in the communities not currently represented in the Great Hall, inviting them to submit a flag. Prior to today Downing has proudly sponsored flag presentation ceremonies for Egremont, Monterey, Mount Washington, New Marlborough, Otis, Pittsfield, Stockbridge, Tyringham and Worthington.

    The adoption of Plainfield’s new flag was driven by the late Jim Pilgrim. In February 2011 he learned Downing was sponsoring a flag design contest with the City of Pittsfield and contacted the Senator to inquire whether Plainfield had a flag. Upon learning his community was not represented in the Great Hall Mr. Pilgrim requested that the Select Board hold a contest to design a town flag.

    Following his request, the Select Board announced a flag design contest, during which several designs were submitted by Plainfield residents. After much deliberation a winning design submitted by Alfred (Jim) Feeley was chosen by the Select Board. The colors and patterns used by Mr. Feeley in his flag design represent Plainfield’s beautiful landscape and history in agriculture:

    Background of green hills: symbolize that Plainfield is one of the “hilltowns” of western Massachusetts;
    Blue wavy lines: symbolic of Plainfield’s many rivers and streams;
    Blue sky with wavy white lines: symbolic of Plainfield’s open rural skies;
    Ring of grain: symbolize Plainfield’s agricultural zoning and open fields for produce; and
    Rooster: An exact copy of the original weathervane on top of the original town hall, also symbolic of the “Right to Farm”.

    Paula King, Plainfield’s Administrative Secretary notes that a wooden cut-out of this rooster is currently on display by the Plainfield Historical Society at the Shaw-Hudson House.

    There are ten remaining towns in Downing’s Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin & Hampden district without a flag in the Great Hall: Alford, Hawley, Middlefield, New Ashford, Savoy, Westhampton, West Stockbridge, Williamsburg, Williamstown and Windsor. Additionally, Kulik’s 1st Franklin district is missing flags from Montague and Whately. In total, there are 25 missing town flags from communities statewide that if presented, would complete the Great Hall’s collection.

    Downing and Kulik are together renewing their call to these twelve communities to submit a flag to State House officials.

    Susan Greendyke Lachevre, Art Collections Manager for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Art Commission advises that flags prepared for display in the Great Hall should meet the following specifications:

    Flags should measure 4 x 6’ and have a 3” pole sleeve (not grommets) at the hoist end of the flag for threading onto a 1” diameter pole;
    Nylon or cotton muslin flags are preferred, although flags may be constructed of any strong material, either single or double faced;
    Flags may be handmade or commercially produced, and printed or decorated in any stable, permanent fashion;
    Images may be one-sided, but two-sided decoration is encouraged; and
    Fringe is optional.

    Residents or officials seeking information on creating a flag are encouraged to contact Downing’s or Kulik’s State House office.


  68. Jill Wheat said,

    May 23, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    CALL FOR SINGERS: Anyone want to do a little singing in the northern Berkshires? Adults of all ages & kids grade 4 or over who will concentrate on learning music are welcome. All voice parts needed! Charles Marshall of All Saint’s Church is accompanying with Jill Wheat directing/singing. Dates: 6/22, 6/29 & 7/6 from 2-4, dress rehearsal Wed 7/9 at 7PM & performance Friday 7/11 at 7:30PM. Rehearsals at 215 Richview Ave., North Adams. Singers contribute $15 to help pay for sheet music. Potential music includes: For the Beauty of the Earth, Draw the Circle Wide, Blue Waters of the North, Out on the Mira, The Ash Grove, Ride the Chariot & 2 more TBA. The concert will be free. Donations will be collected toward production costs & to be donated to local charities. Email Jill Wheat to join in the music making at


  69. May 13, 2014 at 9:00 am

    The Child Learning and Development (CLAD) Lab at Amherst College seeks volunteers to participate in a study about how children learn from others. We are looking for children ages 0-7. Parental consent will be obtained, and the one-time visit will take no more than 30 minutes. Our lab is open Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm, but we can also try to accommodate weekend or evening times. If you are interested or would like more information, please call our lab at (413) 542-5670 or email us at You can also find us on Facebook at! We look forward to hearing from you!


  70. bobbijogirroir said,

    May 12, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    Holyoke Credit Union is Offering a FREE to the Public Home Buyer Information Session
    WHEN: Thursday, 5/22/14 at 6:00
    WHERE: Holyoke Credit Union, 490 Westfield St, Holyoke, MA
    RSVP to Hold your Spot(s) @ 413-519-5636

    The seminar is open to anyone wanting to learn more about the home buying process to avoid pitfalls, save time and money. The presenters will include Loan Specialists from Holyoke Credit Union, Attorney Sam Bilotti of Murphy McCoubrey of Chicopee and Realtors from First Choice Real Estate.

    The seminar is intended to help inform and educate new homebuyers (or homeowners who are looking to sell and buy who want to know of lending guideline changes). Topics will include advice on buying a home, how to pre-qualify and the various steps through the mortgage application process, equity of home ownership and the benefits of owning vs. renting.

    All sponsors are offering special incentives to seminar participants attending if purchasing in 2014. Door prize, give-aways and light refreshments will be available. For more information about the seminar or to register contact Bobbi-Jo Girroir, Realtor at 413-519-5636 or Christine Chouinard, Realtor at 413-363-8333.


  71. Barbara Goodchild said,

    May 8, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    Shelburne Falls Farmers Market will be starting May 23rd and continuing on each Friday until October 24th on Friday afternoons, from 2 – 6:30pm, at the Baptist Corner Lot, at the corner of Main and Water Streets in Shelburne Falls. The Shelburne Falls Farmers Market features fresh produce, local meat, maple syrup, pickles, jams, jellies, marmalades, jewelry, wood crafts, seated body work, herbal products, mushrooms, fresh baked goods, wool, wool products, hand woven items, strawberries, fresh eggs, plant starts, flowers, soap, silk screened clothing, children’s activities, and more. It is a beautiful place to get your local products, visit with neighbors, let the kids play, relax on the green, and meet new friends.
    New this year, the market is hosting “3rd Friday Picnics” during market hours. People are asked to bring a picnic dish to share & a chair. Vendors will have fresh salad fixings for sale with free salad dressings offered by the market.
    The Market is looking for a new market manager, musicians to play, and vendors selling cheese, ready-to-eat foods or drinks, and honey. If you can offer any of these please contact Chris Dwight, Shelburne Falls Market Manager 413-773-5666.


  72. April 30, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    Great Barrington Waldorf High School: Trip to Cuba
    A group of students and faculty from a small Berkshire high school recently returned from a place not too far away, but largely unknown to a majority of Americans.
    Sonia Cintrón was among a group of five students and three teachers from the Great Barrington Waldorf High School in Stockbridge who spent 15 days in Cuba.
    “She asked me last summer, ‘How would you like to go to Cuba?” Cintrón recalled. “My reply was when do I go?”
    Cintrón, a Spanish teacher and native of Puerto Rico, was approached by Andrea Panaritis about a potential trip to the island nation. Panaritis is the executive director of the Christopher Reynolds Foundation, an agency aimed at strengthening U.S.-Cuba relations.
    “I think that what the average American thinks about Cuba is probably still related frankly to the Cuban Revolution, maybe Fidel [Castro], cigars, and some bygone era of casinos and bars,” said Panaritis.
    Panaritis says the U.S. trade and visiting embargo on its neighbor 90 miles to the south restricts American access to things like vaccines created in Cuba used around the globe, not to mention the cultural and economic opportunities developing there after decades of communism.
    “Some folks say that the embargo on Cuba is bad for Cubans, it’s also on some levels bad for us,” said Panaritis.
    Panaritis’ son Kosta Koufis was one of the students on the trip. The junior says he wanted to learn more about Cuba’s changing political scene.
    “It’s a country in a changing state,” Koufis said. “I wanted to go because I thought it would be interesting to see how the people are reacting and using socialism and capitalism to live their lives.”
    Traveling across the island’s northwestern and southwestern provinces, the group visited historical places like the site of the infamous U.S.-led Bay of Pigs Invasion in 1961. Koufis says what he learned is quite different than what he’s read in U.S. history books.
    “They have a lot of anti-American propaganda at the Bay of Pigs so it’s definitely a drastic change from what is taught here,” said Koufis.
    Cintrón says it was important for her students to learn both sides of the story.
    “I wanted my students to hear that side of the encounter of the Bay of Pigs,” Cintrón said.I happened to be alive when it happened and I remember that very well. So for me personally it was a great experience to see their side of the story.”
    The trip was allowed as part of a person-to-person educational exchange. The group stayed with Cuban families while visiting an orphanage, creating art with people with Down’s syndrome and working with peers on community projects. Sophomore Annabelle O’Neill says she wanted a chance to do what most in the U.S. can’t.
    “They are just like us,” O’Neill said. “They are just trying to find where they want to go in life.”
    Koufis says interacting with people his age made the trip that much more enjoyable, especially over a game of baseball.
    “I don’t know, I felt like I kept up with them, but on a whole they definitely kicked our butts,” said Koufis.
    Faculty chair Stephen Sagarin says the Cuban journey and additional trips to Peru, Columbia and Germany support the school’s slogan: “Small School, Big World.”
    “If we want to make the world more peaceful and just, one of the ways we can do that is through cultural exchange and getting to know people in different parts of the world separate from political and economic differences,” said Sagarin.
    As for picking up any slang Spanish words or strengthening their skills with the foreign language…O’Neill explains.
    “I think I am understanding Spanish a lot better,” O’Neill said. “I don’t know how much better I’m getting at speaking it.”
    The community is welcome to join to the group May 9th at Waldorf High School at 7 p.m. to view pictures and discuss the trip.



  73. Hilltown CDC said,

    April 30, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Notice of Public Hearing
    The Chesterfield Selectboard will hold a public hearing regarding the implementation of the CDBG FY13 Program administered by the Hilltown CDC. The hearing will take place Tuesday May 20, at 5:00 in the Select Board room in the Town Office Building, 422 Main Rd, Chesterfield. Building is accessible to persons with disabilities.

    A review of the following programs will be conducted: Housing Rehabilitation, Hilltown Elder Network, Health Outreach Program for Elders, Families Together, Childcare Subsidy and Hilltown Food Pantry.

    Anyone interested in sharing ideas or comments regarding these programs is welcome and encouraged to attend. If you are unable to attend but would still like to provide feedback, please send an email to or mail your comments to Hilltown CDC, PO Box 17, Chesterfield, MA 01012


  74. April 29, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SERVICES AVAILABLE IN THE HILLTOWNS: Hilltown Safety at Home (HS@H) provides a part-time domestic violence Advocate to hilltown residents who call 413-559-8039. The Advocate can help with safety planning, with understanding people who abuse, with understanding the court system, with transportation to court if needed, and with accessing critical support services. The Advocate can work with people on the phone or in person, and can also help friends and family members who are trying to support a loved one who is being abused. If you need help in an emergency, call 911 or the Safe Passage hotline at 1-888-345-5282.


  75. April 25, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    Call for Artists
    La Noche de San Juan Lantern Parade

    The Holyoke Winter Carnival is seeking individual artists and art-related organizations from across the Pioneer Valley and Western Mass. interested in creating hand-made illuminated lanterns to show in its first La Noche de San Juan Lantern Parade on Saturday June 21, 2014.

    The summer solstice celebration will take place at Holyoke Heritage State Park beginning at dusk. The procession will begin at the Merry-Go-Round and follow paths around the Canal and into the Park. All are invited to be a part of this collaborative community project, whether you are an experienced artisan or just someone who would like to learn how to make lanterns and is willing to devote Community groups and families will be encouraged to make lanterns at home and bring them to the parade or they can attend planned lantern making workshops leading up to the event.

    Artists interested in making more elaborate 3-D lanterns or other sculptural figures are encouraged to participate. This is a first time event for Holyoke and we want it to be silly, festive, whimsical, and delightful for all. The La Noche de San Juan Lantern Parade is free and open to residents of all communities. Artists deadline for expressing interest in participating is Saturday.

    For more information, contact Ken Johnston, Holyoke Winter Carnival, at, or phone (413) 244-6766.


  76. April 25, 2014 at 6:38 am

    From Anny Jean-Jacques Domercant, Director Governor’s Office of Community Affairs:

    Governor Deval Patrick has prioritized ending youth violence in our communities, and as part of a multi-facet strategy created the Governor’s Statewide Youth Council to incorporate youth voices into the policy-making process. The Youth Council serves as a critical resource in advising the Governor in making decisions and setting policy to improve the lives of young people throughout the Commonwealth.

    The Governor’s Office will be selecting 28 new Youth Council members to represent Massachusetts’ 14 counties, two Council members per county. Members serve for 2 years. We are now aggressively seeking to contact and recruit potential candidates throughout the state to apply for membership in the Youth Council.

    Youth Council applicants should be passionate, motivated and emerging leaders between the ages of 14 and 20. Their responsibilities will include: attending bimonthly meetings and conference calls, advocating for youth issues and incorporating the ideas of other youth and young adults into the creation of effective policy.

    The Youth Council has advocated on various issues in the Patrick Administration; including the historic anti-bullying legislation that Governor Patrick signed in May 2010. To learn more about activities, initiatives and trainings that the Youth Council has participated in please visit or contact Anny Jean-Jacques Domercant at the Governor’s Office of Community Affairs (617-725-4020).

    Please forward this along with the attached application and flyer, to your network including any interested youth. Please note that the application deadline is May 29, 2014. Thank you for your support and attention to this matter!

    Anny Jean-Jacques Domercant
    Governor’s Office of Community Affairs
    State House, Room 271-M
    Boston, Ma 02133


  77. April 17, 2014 at 12:36 pm


    State grant allows University of Massachusetts researchers to offer free tick testing in 32 communities, including 10 in Franklin County:


  78. April 4, 2014 at 3:00 pm

    I am sixty-three year old female and in all those years I’ve only had
    two absolutely honest mechanics I trusted completely, that is, until

    I was given an estimate of $1,200 by a dealership to fix my car. I
    was told that the repairs were so serious they needed to be done
    immediately. I took my car to the Worthington Garage, Tim, Owner, 58
    Huntington Rd., Worthington, MA (413) 238-5967. He put my car on the
    lift and explained in detail each of the “needed” repairs and assured
    me there were some problems that would be needing fixing in the future
    but even then, certain parts did not need to be completely replaced
    and could be fixed for much less money. He refused to take anything
    for his inspection.

    I want to publicly commend Tim for his honesty and integrity, which is
    in such scarcity today. He could have agreed with what the dealer told
    me but instead, chose to be upfront about what was truly warranted.

    After meeting Tim, the third most absolutely honest mechanic ever in
    my life, I’m going to make sure to keep up my AAA Plus membership as,
    if my car needs repairs it will be towed from Easthampton (where I
    live) to Tim’s Worthington Garage. I also plan to tell everyone I know
    about him.

    Andrea Tangredi, Easthampton, MA


  79. April 3, 2014 at 2:27 pm

    Hilltown Families is hiring an Online Content Assistant (part-time). Job description posted on Idealist:


  80. March 30, 2014 at 8:32 pm

    RH Conwell Community Education Center Launches Campaign
    to Keep Community School Open for 2014-2015 School Year

    Worthington, MA, March 26, 2014: The R.H. Conwell Community Education Center (RHCCEC), a private school that serves the families of the Hilltowns, has launched a fundraising campaign to raise $300,000 so that it can remain open for another year. The school, which was opened in 2010 in response to the closing the town’s public school and which accepts all children regardless of ability to pay, has been supported by private donations for the last four school years. Since there is pending legislation that will, if passed by the Massachusetts Senate, enable the town to reopen a public school in 2015, RHCCEC only needs to operate for one more year. The community is being asked to support the school to ensure that its children will not be displaced for the coming school year, and can seamlessly transition from the private school to the public one.

    The R.H. Conwell public school was a public school until 2010, when it was closed by the Gateway Regional School District. Parents, friends and community members came together who had organized before the closing to find an alternative to closure (including fundraising and a charter school application), banded together to re-open Conwell as a private school, funded almost exclusively by donations. It has received no federal, state, or town funding and charges a very minimal tuition. No child is ever turned away because of an inability to pay. Unfortunately, its largest benefactors find themselves unable to sustain the level of commitment, and the school must turn to the larger community for support.

    In addition to opening a private school, Worthington’s community has, against all odds and with exceptionally broad support among residents, pursued withdrawal from Gateway Regional School District. The decision to close the elementary school was against all the community’s input and support. In order to withdraw, a home rule petition was filed by town legislators as a result of an overwhelmingly supportive vote at the Annual Town Meeting. The bill, H3574, has passed the House of Representatives, and the town is now waiting for the Senate to pass the bill. Once the bill passes, Worthington can withdraw from Gateway, and open RH Conwell as a public school again in September 2015, this time under town control. Worthington will then enter into a contract with Hampshire Regional School District to ensure the education of students grades 7-12, and for superintendency and other administrative services.

    In order to provide an education in the community in the interim, RHCCEC must raise enough money to be able to open its doors again this fall. Parents, teachers, and community members are working together to raise money, and are taking donations of all sizes. Donations can be sent directly to the school, made through the schools website at, or donors can visit the campaign’s website at

    RHCCEC’s goal is to secure the majority of the funds before the end of May, so that it can assure school staff and parents that the school will remain open for its final year.

    # # #


  81. March 21, 2014 at 6:38 am

    MotherWoman writes: Calling all moms and dads! Do you have a story to tell about how the lack of supportive family policies (such as maternity/paternity leave (paid or unpaid), lack of paid sick time, etc… has affected your experience of motherhood/parenthood? MotherWoman would love to interview you for an upcoming video.

    We are looking for 5-8 stories from families from diverse backgrounds. At the video shoot, the amazing and well sought after family photographer (Sarah Prall Photography) will take a beautiful portrait of you with your child for our video, and you will receive this portrait as an invaluable gift and a ‘thank you’ from us!

    The video/photo shoot is scheduled for March 29/30 in Belchertown, MA (you must be able to travel to location). To express your interest about this opportunity, email


  82. March 20, 2014 at 9:22 am

    The newly revitalized Easthampton Prevention Coalition (name to change too) is meeting on the fourth Thurs. of the month. Come March 27 from 4-5:30 pm at 50 Payson Ave, 2nd Floor. Anyone interested in promoting healthy behaviors among Easthampton youth and preventing underage drinking and drug use is welcome to attend! We focus on community level change and have representation from all sectors of Easthampton. Any questions or to find out more, contact Coalition Coordinator Ruth Ever at (413) 207-5725 or email at or check our website:


  83. Barbara Goodchild said,

    March 20, 2014 at 8:12 am

    The 3rd “Music Fills the Pantry Variety Show”, featuring local talent will be held Sat. Apr. 5, 2014 (snow date Sun. Apr. 6), from 5 to 8 pm at Fellowship Hall, Little Mohawk Rd, Shelburne, MA. If you or your child would like to perform, we are looking for more, 1 – 10 minute acts. Sing, dance, stories, jokes, skits, etc are all welcome for this family friendly event. Performers choose the hour they would like to perform in (so you don’t have to stay the whole time). The Variety Show benefits the Hilltown Churches Food Pantry in Ashfield and the Good Neighbors Food Pantry in Charlemont. For more info. or to request a signup form, please contact: Barbara Goodchild –


  84. March 6, 2014 at 10:59 am

    Did you know that financial fraud is the fastest growing form of elder abuse? One in every five Americans age 65 or older has been abused financially. To learn more, please make plans to join JFS Elder Care Program at a workshop about Preventing Financial Fraud on Tuesday, March 18, 10-11:30am in Jewish Family Service’s Community Room, 1160 Dickinson Street, Springfield, MA. Tim Roberts, Assistant Vice President for Financial Crimes and Fraud Management at TD Bank will cover key topics that include: what is elder fraud; common types of scams; identity theft; ways to protect yourself.

    This program is free and open to the public. It is specifically designed to help older adults, their families and/or caregivers learn about financial exploitation and how to better protect themselves and their loved one from being victims of fraud. After this workshop, you will be better informed able to recognize and avoid a scam. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged as space is limited: 413-737-2601;


  85. cotswold293 said,

    March 4, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    HOST FAMILIES are needed for international exchange students for the
    2014/2015 academic year. The students will arrive in early August and will
    stay with the host family until the end of the high school year. They are in need of caring families (with or without children) to provide a home and share with them this unique experience. The host family will provide a bed, meals, as well as friendship, understanding, and a genuine desire to share the American way of life with a youngster from overseas. The students speak English, are covered by medical insurance and have spending money for their personal expenses. The SHARE! High School Exchange Program is sponsored by Educational Resource Development Trust, a global educational non-profit foundation. For more information, please contact Heather Baylis at or 413 623 0136.


  86. February 23, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Free Film Series: “Are Your Kids Sext Up?”

    Zonta Club of Northampton Area has put together a free film series, “Are Your Kids Sext Up?” This series will build awareness and open up community discussions about the very real challenges girls and young women face locally. Included topics will be teen dating violence; rape culture on college campuses; the commonplace teen culture of taking naked photos and sending them out into the world via text, Facebook, SnapChat, or email; and the sexualization and marginalization of young girls and women in video games, music videos, movies, and other media. Parents and educators will walk away with a better understanding of the daily struggles kids face and empowered with ideas for discussing and tackling these important issues.

    Screenings take place Feb 26, Mar 26 & Apr 30 at the Unitarian Society Social Room (220 Main St., Northampton) from 6-7:30pm.


  87. Rachel Jones said,

    February 21, 2014 at 11:38 am

    My name is Rachel Jones and I am the Director of the Gateway to College Program at Springfield Technical Community College. This is a scholarship program for Springfield students, ages 16-20, who have dropped out of school or at-risk of not completing high school, but have a desire to get back on track and earn a diploma and go to college. What makes Gateway to College truly unique is that our students will not only have a chance to earn a high school diploma, but Gateway participants will also be earning college credits toward an associate’s degree or certificate here at STCC.

    Gateway to College at STCC is an educational alternative for young motivated people who may not have had success in other learning environments. Gateway to College students, can expect to be challenged, just as any high school or college student would be. Our philosophy as a program and as a staff is that all students have the ability to achieve academic success and deserve the highest quality of education. We just ask that students are willing to focus and work hard.

    Students selected to participate in the Gateway to College Scholarship program will have no out of pocket expenses for their tuition, fees, or books while participating in the program. In addition to academic and financial assistance, students will have an Academic Counselor dedicated to their success. The Academic Counselor guides students through the college experience as an advisor, instructor and a mentor. They will assist students with different facets of the college experience -everything from teaching students about careers and time management to providing referrals to community resources.

    We encourage you to pass along this information and the attached brochure to any young person who may be a good fit for this terrific opportunity and please feel free to contact us for more
    information at 413-755-4581, stop by our office on campus in building 16 (Garvey Hall) room 285 or

    If you’d like for me to come to speak with potential students, please let me know. Also, we’d love if you were able to include our program information on your website as another resource for young people.


    Rachel Jones


  88. February 7, 2014 at 11:05 am

    From Northern Berkshire Community Coalition:

    Youth-Led Conference Empowers Youth to Take Initiative in Their Lives

    The eighth annual 411 in the 413, the only youth-led conference in the county, will take place on Wednesday April 16th, 2014. The mission of the “411 in the 413” Conference is to empower youth to take initiative in their lives and in the future. The event has been coordinated by a group of youth and their supervisors from the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition, Railroad Street Youth Project of Great Barrington, and Pittsfield Prevention Partnership.

    This year’s theme is #GetConnected. The day will provide participants an opportunity to discover new things about themselves, others, new activities, and the outdoors. The conference takes place at the Becket-Chimney Corners YMCA in Becket, MA and offers youth a chance to share their ideas and make their voices heard!

    In preparation for the event, we are seeking creative, dynamic speakers and interactive workshop facilitators. The focus of this year’s conference is to make connections with other teens, with new interests, and with nature. For more info, contact Stephanie Bosley at (413) 663-7588 or To submit a proposal online, visit or for hard copy.


  89. February 7, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Biocitizen Our Place Summercamp Scholarship Program 2014

    Thanks to the generosity of the Hilltown 6 potters, and of the camper parents and supporters who attended our Flavors of Nonotuck fundraiser last July at the Lone Wolf Cafe in Amherst, we are able this year to offer 10 scholarships, which fully cover the $300.00 camp tuition.

    To learn about Our Place, please explore this description:

    If you would like to apply for the Our Place Scholarship, we ask you to send us (via emailed Word document to

    —Your contact information

    —Your child’s name, age and school

    —A statement of interest and of need: that places your request for assistance in the context of these Hampshire County Census figures:

    Median Income for 2010:

    family of 2 67K
    family of 3 83K
    family of 4 102K
    family of 5 105K

    Applications must be received by Saturday, February 22, 2014. Decisions will be announced one week later, on March 1, 2014.


  90. Gina Beavers said,

    February 6, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Community Music School of Springfield is excited to launch our “Sonido Musica” program. This is a new Latin instrumental outreach program made possible by a generous grant from MassMutual. But we need your help, too! We’re looking for violins, violas and cellos in good condition for our middle school participants. CMSS is a 501(C)3 and
    all donations are tax deductible and greatly appreciated! Visit us at or on Facebook. Thank you!


  91. Zoey said,

    February 6, 2014 at 10:49 am

    I am honored and thrilled to offer a local woman a full day of pampering through my business Style by Zoey in collaboration with Ode boutique of Northampton, Changes hair salon and Dani fine photography. Hurry and nominate yourself or a friend. Two weeks left to snag these amazing prices. Follow the link to apply:


  92. Katy Eiseman said,

    February 2, 2014 at 11:40 am

    Please sign this petition to support Berkshire Trail Elementary School, which serves Cummington and Windsor. Some of you may have heard about the ongoing tension between Berkshire Trail and certain members of the regional school committee, who are seeking further cuts to the school. The sixth grade has already been cut, and several administrative and teaching positions have been reduced. Meanwhile, last school year, the school partnered with Expeditionary Learning Schools and began an innovative, comprehensive program that I believe is taking the school in the right direction.

    Here’s the link to the petition:

    For anyone interested in helping support the school in other ways, letters to the School Committee are helpful, and here is schedule of upcoming meetings (parental/community support at these meetings is important):

    Finance Subcommittee Meetings.
    Monday, Feb 3 at Nessacus Middle School (Dalton)
    Thursday, Feb 6 at Nessacus Middle School (Dalton)

    Voting on the budget takes place at the School Committee Meetings. They are scheduled for:
    Thursday, Feb 13 at 7:00 at Berkshire Trail (tentative budget adoption)
    Thursday, Feb. 27 at 7:00 at Nessacus (public hearing on budget)
    Thursday, March 13 at 7:00 at Nessacus (budget adoption)


  93. January 14, 2014 at 10:57 am

    The Hilltown Village is actively seeking families to serve. They have several volunteers waiting to be matched with families with newborns. Let your friends and neighbors living in the Western halves of Franklin and Hampshire county know about this grassroots, FREE postpartum support program: they provide: Home Visits; Resource Kits; Food calendars; Mothers’ groups; access to the Village Closet (free hand-me-down maternity, baby and little kid clothes and gear). Learn more at


  94. January 13, 2014 at 9:03 am

    The Academy at Charlemont’s board of trustees has announced that Dr. Brian Bloomfield will serve as Head of School, beginning July 1, 2014. Visit for the full text of this announcement.


  95. Monica Moran said,

    January 7, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force

    We want to thank the 326 hilltown residents who took our survey and we want to share this press release below with information from survey results. For the full report you can visit us on Facebook at Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force or email us at




    In a survey taken by 326 hilltown residents, 96% of respondents agreed “It is possible to abuse someone without using physical violence.” However, only 66% of those surveyed believe other hilltown residents would agree with this statement.

    Eighty-five percent of hilltown residents agreed that “Abuse is never the fault of the person being abused,’ but only 54% thought others in the community would agree with this statement.

    The Task Force believes it is critical to correct theses misperceptions. Research shows that perception gaps like these are common, and affect what people think and how they act. When misperceptions are corrected, attitudes and behaviors often shift.

    The Task Force wants to make sure that people who are abusive know the community does not support or accept their behavior – even if their abuse is not physical. Studies show that perpetrators of abuse both over-estimate the percent of people who share their attitudes, and rely on their false beliefs to justify their behavior.

    The Task Force also hopes that when people who are abused realize few people blame them, they will feel more comfortable asking for help, and will be less likely to remain silent for fear of being blamed.

    Among the non-physical behaviors identified as abusive by at least 90% of survey respondents were ‘controlling where you go and what you do’, ‘a pattern of name calling and put downs’, ‘extreme jealousy or possessiveness’, ‘isolating you from family or friends’, ‘threatening you, your loved ones, or your pets’, ‘threatening to take the children away’, ‘threatening you by referring to weapons in the home’, ‘making jobs impossible to keep’, and ‘controlling all the money’. These behaviors are often used together over time to exert power and control over a partner.
    The survey also asked about the behavior of those who see abuse or ‘bystanders’. Most respondents reported that they did or said something if someone they know was abused (69%) or someone they know was abusive (51%). To help those who are abused, the Task Force recommends listening without judging, reminding people that the abuse is not their fault, and referring people to local resources. If someone is abusive, the Task Force recommends making sure you are safe before doing anything. Then, interventions can include pointing out specific behaviors that are abusive, referring people to batterer intervention groups, or calling the police.

    Most also believe the police would be helpful if they called because of abuse, and 67% said they would call the police if they or someone they cared about was being abused.

    The Task Force is encouraged that 74% of hilltown residents surveyed know of at least one agency they can go to for help if they are someone they know is abused. These agencies include Safe Passage (413-586-5066), Hilltown Safety at Home (413-559-8039), Center for Women and Community (413-658-4756) , YWCA New Beginnings (413-667-8784), the GLBTQ DV Project (800-832-1901) and for people who are abusive, Moving Forward (888-636-9050).

    The survey was distributed throughout the community from April through August 2013. Surveys were distributed at libraries, town halls, community agencies, community fairs and picnics, and through mailings, various websites, Facebook and senior citizen groups. A $200 raffle prize was used to encourage residents to take the survey.

    The Task Force plans to use survey findings to conduct an outreach and education campaign beginning next month.


  96. January 3, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    Part IV – Items of General Interest
    Lactation Expenses as Medical Expenses

    Announcement 2011-14
    The Internal Revenue Service has concluded that breast pumps and supplies that assist lactation are medical care under § 213(d) of the Internal Revenue Code because, like obstetric care, they are for the purpose of affecting a structure or function of the body of the lactating woman. Therefore, if the remaining requirements of § 213(a) are met (for example, the taxpayer’s total medical expenses exceed 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income), expenses paid for breast pumps and supplies that assist lactation are deductible medical expenses. Amounts reimbursed for these expenses under flexible spending arrangements, Archer medical savings accounts, health reimbursement arrangements, or health savings accounts are not income to the taxpayer.

    The Service will revise Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses, to include this information.

    For additional information concerning this announcement, contact Amy S. Wei of the Office of Associate Chief Counsel (Income Tax and Accounting) at (202) 622-7900 (not a toll-free call).



  97. December 4, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Volunteers in Northampton Schools (VINS): Are you interested in being a community volunteer? Do you have just 1-2 hours a week of time to give local schools? VINS is recruiting volunteers for library assistance, individual and small group tutoring, Math Club activity guides, and classroom/resource assistance. If you are available to volunteer please contact VINS. 413.587.1332


  98. November 20, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    Hilltown residents will be reviewing their town’s “to-do” lists at their upcoming Community Development Strategy meetings, to be held in each respective town during the months of November and December.

    Residents are invited to participate in this process to review last year’s goals and recommend new community improvement projects for the coming year. These important planning sessions are facilitated by the Hilltown Community Development Corporation.

    The strategy sessions will be held in the Selectboard meeting rooms in each town at the following times:

    — Worthington Town Offices, Tuesday, November 26, at 7:30pm,
    — Peru Town Offices, Monday November 25, at 7:00pm,
    — Goshen Town Hall, Tuesday, December 9, at 7:00pm,

    If your family lives in any of the aforementioned towns, please consider attending the meeting in your town to provide input. To participate in the Community Development Block Grant Program, each town must complete an annual Community Development Strategy document, which includes an outline of the town’s goals and a priority list of community projects. After each public meeting, selectmen in the towns will review public input and edit the Community Development Strategies to reflect the Town’s goals and projects that may be eligible for federal block grant funding. For information about the review process or to request a copy of your town’s CDS document, contact Christopolis at the Hilltown CDC at or 413-296-4536.


  99. November 19, 2013 at 7:25 am

    Gateway High School’s Student Council is collecting non-perishable food items from November 13 through November 22, 2013, to help area families have a better Thanksgiving. Students will receive a spirit point for each item they bring in, with double points awarded on November 20. Items may be brought to Ms. Lavigueur in room 154 or to The Swamp after school. Donations will be given to the Huntington Food Pantry.


  100. November 18, 2013 at 8:44 am

    Cozy Coats for the Community

    This year, the Gateway Regional Junior High School Blue-and-Gold Committee will sponsor a coat drive from November 21st to December 5th. This group will be collecting washed, gently used coats for adults and children in the local area.

    This is the second year of the coat drive. The community was very generous last year in donating a total of eighty-five coats.
    The drop-off locations will be at;

    The Littleville Elementary School Lobby (during normal school hours)

    The Gateway Regional High School lobby (during normal school hours)
    Holy Family Church on Route 20 in Russell (anytime—box will be located outside)

    The Hilltown Community Health Centers in both Huntington and Worthington (during normal business hours)

    The Gateway Community Center/Hilltown Social Services Building Route 20 in Huntington (across from the fire station) (anytime—located outside)

    Coats will be collected and available for Hilltown families from December 6th through December 13th at the Gateway Community Center/Hilltown Social Services Building in Huntington.


  101. Bea said,

    November 12, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Community Development Strategy Meetings are scheduled!

    Residents in the towns of Worthington, Peru and Goshen are encouraged to attend a meeting to review their towns goals, priorities and accomplishments which are outlined in each town Community Development Strategy (CDS) and to gather new ideas for future projects. After the meeting, each town Selectboard will review the public input and revise the CDS to reflect the town goals and projects that may be eligible for federal block grant funding. Citizen participation is a vital component of this process and is encouraged!

    Peru: Monday. Nov. 25th at 7pm at the Town Offices
    Worthington: Tuesday, Nov. 26th at 7:30 pm at the Town Hall
    Goshen: Monday, Dec. 9th at 7pm at the Town Hall

    For more information, contact Dave Christopolis, Hilltown CDC Executive Director at or 296-4536, ext. 118


  102. November 7, 2013 at 11:22 am

    State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D- Pittsfield) announces today that his next Coffee & Conversation event will take place on Monday, November 18th from 2:00pm-4:00pm at Cummington Town Hall (located at 33 Main Street).

    In order to be accessible to all his constituents, no matter where they live, Senator Downing hosts 10 Coffee & Conversation open forums in rotating towns across his Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin & Hampden district.

    All are welcome to join the Senator and his district staff to pose a question, submit a comment or pitch an idea regarding state government. Downing provides free coffee and refreshments for those who attend.

    For more details on the Senator’s Coffee & Conversation program, please visit Downing’s online office at and click on “Upcoming Events.”


  103. October 29, 2013 at 8:10 am

    The Gateway News Network (GNN) is holding a fundraiser for new equipment and other needs. They are converting home videos and educational videos from VHS to DVD. GNN produces weekly broadcasts on events taking place throughout the district. The broadcasts are put together during a video production class. Valley Communications has donated equipment to the News Network, but they need funding for new things like camera updates and equipment for the Broadcasting Program. It is $10 for the first conversion, and additional DVDs of the same item are just $5. Television shows and movies that have been taped cannot be converted under copyright laws. Educators’ school videos are free (with a 5 video limit ). Converting a VHS to DVD should take approximately 1 – 2 weeks, unless more than 10 tapes have been submitted — that could take up to 4 weeks. VHS tapes should be left for Donna Morrissey in the Gateway Regional High School Office in Huntington, MA. For more information, contact the Gateway News Network by emailing


  104. October 18, 2013 at 1:28 pm

    “Operation Santa” Application Now Available

    Applications are currently being accepted for the “Operation Santa” program that is sponsored by the W.S. Park & Recreation Department. This program distributes food baskets and toys to needy families in West Springfield. The toys and gifts are available to children ages 15 and younger in families where the Christmas Season might be less joyful without this assistance. Townspeople, along with business and community groups are among those who contribute to this program. Applications, with income guidelines, are available for pick up at the West Springfield Boys and Girls Club, West Springfield Senior Center, Lutheran Services, Principal’s Office of all public schools, St. Thomas School, the Municipal Office Building Reception Area, HeadStart Program, located behind Immaculate Conception Church, the Park & Recreation Department Office and the Community Development Office, located on the corner of Main and Russell Streets.

    This year, the food baskets and gifts will be delivered on Saturday, December 14th, using the services of Townspeople and High School Students. Deadline to submit an application is November 8, 2013.

    Those people to whom gifts will be distributed must have a responsible adult home at the address shown on the application on Saturday morning, December 14, 2013, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 12:00 noon.


  105. October 17, 2013 at 9:37 am

    Franklin County Pumpkinfest is looking for recycling volunteers this Saturday, October 19th, 2013, from 2-9pm in Turners Falls. High School groups and clubs welcome and encouraged to volunteer! Recycling volunteers will: help set up lightweight recycle bins next to trash cans; collect recyclables from designated bins; process materials; have fun and enjoy the festival while protecting our environment! Shift times are: 2-6 and 6-10, with a generous shift break in the middle. Help is also really needed for cleanup starting at 9PM. Chris Tobey is the PumpkinFest Recycling Coordinator, his cell # is 413-522-2807, and his email is: (call him if you can’t find him at the event.) To sign up: Email or call Chris Tobey, contact info above. Or email Amy Donovan, Program Director, Franklin County Solid Waste Management District;, or (M-F only) call 413-772-2438.


  106. October 16, 2013 at 8:33 am

    Berkshire County Rx Round Up
    Saturday, October 26, 2013, from 10am – 2pm

    Do you have unused, unwanted or expired medications around your home? Help protect your family, community and the environment by safely disposing of them at the following locations:

    North Berkshire County:
    Adams- Adams Police Station (4 School St.)
    North Adams- Police Dept. (11 Summer Street)
    Williamstown- Police Dept. (31 North Street)

    Central Berkshire County:
    Lenox- Lenox Town Hall (6 Walker Street)
    Pittsfield- CHP Neighborhood Health Center (510 North St.)
    Dalton- Dalton CRA (400 Main Street)

    South Berkshire County:
    Great Barrington- Police Station (465 Main Street)drop box only
    Sheffield- Police Station (10 Main St.)
    Stockbridge- Police Station/Town Hall (50 Main St.)
    West Stockbridge -Police Station (21 State Line Rd.)

    24/7 LOCK BOX LOCATIONS: Don’t forget – You can drop off Rx meds any day, at any time at police stations in these towns: Great Barrington, Sheffield, Pittsfield, North Adams and Williamstown.


  107. October 16, 2013 at 8:23 am

    Interested in volunteering to donate prepared food for the Amherst Survival Center Community Thanksgiving Meal? The Center invites all community member to join them for the meal on Nov 27th from 1-2:3opm at the Immanuel Lutheran Church (North Pleasant Street, Amherst) and relies on volunteers to donate prepared food. All are welcome. If you’re interested in preparing a food item, contact Tracey Levy, Program Director, at 413-549-3968 x102 or


  108. October 16, 2013 at 7:59 am

    VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY: Sign up with the Amherst Survival Center to be a donor and buy a holiday gift for a child in your community. The ASC will share the child’s age, gender, and a specific gift they’ll enjoy at a value of $25-$50. Interested donors can sign up by contacting Tim Kennedy, Free Store Coordinator (413-549-3968 x101 or It’s so easy: register with the ASC, then bring your gifts to the Center by December 9 (138 Sunderland Road, North Amherst) or bring them to the Immanuel Lutheran Church on December 10 (867 N Pleasant Street, Amherst). Gifts will be distributed to all children on December 11. Families are already signing up their children for this program. Workplaces, student groups, sports teams, and families are also starting to sign up to be Gift Givers!


  109. October 16, 2013 at 7:43 am

    During November, the Amherst Survival Center will provide Thanksgiving Food Boxes to families in their Emergency Food Pantry. Please help them fill these boxes by donating containers of non-perishable items that help make a holiday meal such as stuffing mix, canned cranberry sauce, canned pumpkin and other pie fillings, corned bread mix, canned corn and green beans, ten dollar gift certificates to area grocery stores so people can buy their own supplies, and frozen turkeys and frozen hams. Please deliver your non-perishable donations to the ASC Food Pantry starting October 17th. Questions about holding a holiday food drive for the Pantry? Contact their Pantry Coordinator, Shelly Beck at 413-549-3968 x104 or e-mail

    Check out our list of 19 Children’s Books on Food Security/Scarcity to share with your children to help further you conversation of hunger and how families can help their community


  110. October 12, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    Amherst Historical Museum Annual Amherst House Tour: Six unique and historic houses can be toured on November 2nd, from 10 am to 4 pm. Tickets purchased in advance are $20.00 and the day of are $25.00. Proceeds from this event help preserve the Simeon Strong House and its collection. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling 413-256-0678.


  111. Melody said,

    October 2, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    The Haberdashery: Goods & Guidance for Crafty Homesteaders is coming soon to Easthampton! It will be a supply shop and educational center for homesteading skills, carrying locally produced and hard-to-find materials and tools. The co-founders, local seamstress & baker, Melody & Chris, are fund-raising to make this dream a reality. Please help us grow and nourish our community with this project. Every little bit helps! Learn more and contribute at


  112. September 5, 2013 at 10:46 am

    Amherst Montessori School would like to find a few students in grades 4,5 & 6 who would be interested in taking band instrument lessons and being a part of our band. The lessons are offered on Tuesdays after school at 27 Pomeroy Lane, Amherst and cost $30 per week. Instruments offered are: flute, clarinet, sax, trumpet, trombone, snare/bass drum/drum set We have a small elementary program and need a few more students to make it possible for us to offer band. Please call for more information: Molly Reynolds 253-3101


  113. September 3, 2013 at 11:40 am

    State Senator Benjamin B. Downing (D- Pittsfield) announces today that his next Coffee & Conversation event will take place on Monday, September 16th from 2:00pm-4:00pm at Westhampton Town Hall (located at One South Road).

    In order to be accessible to all his constituents, no matter where they live, Senator Downing hosts 10 Coffee & Conversation open forums in rotating towns across his district throughout the year. Westhampton is located on the far-eastern boundary of Downing’s Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin & Hampden district.

    All are welcome to join the Senator and his district staff to pose a question, submit a comment or pitch an idea regarding state government. Downing provides free coffee and refreshments for those who attend.

    For more details on the Senator’s Coffee & Conversation program, please visit Downing’s online office at and click on “Upcoming Events.”


  114. September 2, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts and the Berkshire Athenaeum in Pittsfield, MA are partnering up to help educate the community about SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), which replaces the program formerly known as Food Stamps. This collaborative effort to bring about community awareness of this program to support food security is focusing on senior citizens, many of whom may not know they are eligible, but this outreach effort is also connecting to all community members who may have questions or want to know more.

    A representative from The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts will be at the Berkshire Athenaeum’s Main Reading Room from 10am-1pm on the following dates to answer questions, provide information, and pre-screen people for SNAP eligibility:

    • Wednesday, September 25, 2013
    • Wednesday, October 30, 2013
    • Wednesday, November 20, 2013

    If you think your family is eligible, come for help with your applications. If there is an elder in your community who could use assistance, please share this opportunity with them. It is requested that time is reserved by calling 800-247-9632. Eligibility and application information can be found here. The Berkshire Athenaeum is located at 1 Wendell Avenue in Pittsfield, MA.


  115. August 25, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    TEDxShelburneFalls 2013
    Conference Sat. Oct. 12
    Theme: A Sense of Place.

    Ticket sales open on Thursday, August 29th at 12am

    What place are you from? What defines a place? What is the history and nature of the places you most love and most dislike? What can you do to make the places you live, work and play better? Attend 2013 TEDxShelburneFalls conference, themed A Sense of Place, on Saturday October 12, 2013 to talk about and hear how your neighbors are answering these questions. A day of dialog, exploration and action awaits. Over a dozen speakers will deliver their ideas in short presentations of 18 minutes or less.

    Tickets for the live event in Memorial Hall will be available for sale online starting at 12 am, Thursday August 29. Your full-conference ticket includes entry to both sessions and the post-party, as well as one optional pre-conference AM Adventure and longer Sunday Adventures. General seating. $41.

    Free admission to the livestream simulcast at the nearby Shelburne Senior Center/Masons Hall and Mocha Mayas is also available as an alternative, but does not include Adventures. No registration is required for the simulcast and is first come, first serve.

    New this year for full-conference attendees are optional pre & post conference Adventures. Concurrent AM Adventures include tours of the Lamson & Goodnow cutlery factory, Ashfield Stone, an American chestnut breeding orchard in Ashfield, an interpretive tour of the High Ledges Sanctuary by MA Audubon a botanical tour of the Bridge of Flowers by their head gardener, plus various other options. Sunday Adventure are longer hikes or activities in the greater Shelburne Falls area and include hikes to the Massasmett Firetower & High Ledges, free admission to the Buckland Historical Society’s Wilder Homestead Colonial Day, etc. Registering early ensures your best choice for attendance at your preferred Adventure as space is very limited for these outings.

    Read speaker & Adventure details at

    Saturday Oct. 12
    9:00 -11:00 am, Pre-Conference AM Adventures
    Noon – 2:00 pm, Speaker Session 1
    Lunch break, on your own
    4:30 pm -6:30 pm, Speaker Session 2
    7:00 pm – 8:30 pm, Afterparty at the Shelburne Historical Society museum

    Sunday Oct. 13
    Various start times, Post-Conference Sunday Adventures

    The Gist
    TEDxShelburneFalls 2013 A Sense of Place conference is happening Saturday October 12, 2013
    Register online for the full conference pass at starting at 12 am on Thursday September 29, 2013

    Live simulcast of the speaker sessions is free to attend at the Shelburne Senior Center/Masons Hall & Mocha Mayas in the village center.
    No registration is required for the simulcast sites.

    Stacy Kontrabecki, Curator & Producer
    (413) 625-9203

    PS: Volunteers are still needed for several positions on the day of the conference and prior to. Let me know if you’d like to help out!


  116. August 24, 2013 at 7:10 am

    From Lilly Lombard, On behalf of Grow Food Northampton:

    Dear Community,

    We wish to take a moment to respond to Mayor Narkewicz’ decision to allow an application of Roundup herbicide to the Florence Fields Recreation Area that abuts Grow Food Northampton’s farmland and the Mill River. First and foremost, we wish to thank the many citizens who have expressed concern for this issue, and encourage you to continue advocating to your elected officials for the safest possible management methods at Florence Fields. Please see and share our petition that is intended to voice support for organic management of the site going forward.

    While we are disappointed with the Mayor’s decision to approve the broad application of Roundup herbicide at Florence Fields at this time, we acknowledge the higher level of safeguard to our farm that he is specifying for this chemical application than would have occurred prior to our activism. We also thank the Mayor for asking the Department of Public Works to study organic turf management going forward, and to reach out to other municipalities successfully using organic methods on their public fields. We sincerely hope that improved land policies and practices at Florence Fields and beyond will emerge from this experience.

    As guardians of the Northampton Community Farm—which includes our natural resources, wildlife, farmers, gardeners and consumers–Grow Food Northampton continues to believe that organic land care at Florence Fields will best safeguard our public and environmental health, support our organic farmers and gardeners, and enhance the national admiration of the Bean/Allard Preservation Project of which Florence Fields, the Mill River Greenway, and the Northampton Community Farm are all part. We will continue to work collaboratively with the City of Northampton to protect this treasured resource.

    Thank you,

    Lilly Lombard
    On behalf of Grow Food Northampton


  117. Bea v H said,

    August 20, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Westhampton Woods Senior Housing Phase II
    Information Session

    An information session regarding the Westhampton Woods Senior Housing Phase II project will be held at the Westhampton Woods Senior Housing Community Room, 13 Main Road, Unit F, Westhampton, at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, September 4th, 2013. This is an opportunity to see and learn about the design of the eight single story, one bedroom, handicap accessible/adaptable affordable rental units being developed by Hilltown Community Development Corporation for seniors age 62 and over. Typical rents will be $700-$730, utilities included except for phone, cable and internet. Income restrictions apply. There will be two project based Section 8 units.

    Tenants will be chosen through a lottery held in October. Applications are due no later than September 30 for inclusion in the lottery.

    Please contact Bea at 296-4536, ext 115 or if you would like more information or to request an application.


  118. Tim May said,

    August 16, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Organized adult pickup soccer game is being held every Monday evening @ 6pm until 730 pm @ Pettingill Park, Main Street, Cummington. All skill levels welcome, friendly relaxed game with breaks for water. Mostly adults but skilled older kids welcome. Bring light and dark t-shirt. Contact Tim with questions: No fee. Will play even in wet weather unless pouring/thundering at kickoff. Many parents bring younger kids to play on nearby playground during games, however adult supervision there is not provided. Pass it on!


  119. July 26, 2013 at 6:34 pm


    Eastern States Exposition’s Storrowton Village Museum is extending an invitation to individuals ages 14 and up to volunteer as costumed guides in a classic 1800s village during The Big E.

    Volunteers are needed to act as hosts, conducting guided tours of the Village’s historic buildings and to work in the Village Gift Shop during this year’s Big E, Sept. 13 – 29. Training sessions for prospective volunteers begin Wednesday, August 21. To participate, volunteers must complete a Volunteer Interest Form and schedule an in-person interview with a Storrowton Village staff member. Selected volunteers must be available to attend all three training sessions which take place August 21, August 28, and September 4 at 1pm and 6pm.

    Village volunteers dress in Early American-inspired apparel to give fairgoers a glimpse of New England’s past. Interpreting the roles of 19th century New Englanders, volunteers will gain a wealth of knowledge about crafts, food and daily life of the era while participating in the excitement of The Big E.

    Costumes, parking and admission for volunteers on-duty will be provided by The Big E as well as a 25 percent discount on items purchased at the gift shops operated by Storrowton Village. Volunteers will also have the opportunity to attend the staff field trip, picnic and the annual Big E staff party. A recognition luncheon will be held for those who have donated more than 75 hours of service during the year.

    Volunteering at Storrowton Village is a rewarding experience. Past volunteers have said that the interaction with the public and other Village volunteers and the friendships they make is the most memorable part of their commitment to the Village.

    For more information or to schedule an interview, contact Storrowton Village Museum before August 15 at 413-205-5051, weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

    Storrowton Village Museum, an educational arm of Eastern States Exposition and located on its grounds in West Springfield, Mass., presents hands-on school programs and guided tours of its historic buildings throughout the year as well as seasonal 19th century-themed events.


  120. July 25, 2013 at 10:14 am

    If you are looking for something to do Saturday. Come help the Steer family & the town if Worthington celebrate the life of Dan Steer (Bandana Dan) at Liston’s Bar in Worthington, MA from 12:00-Closing time. There will be $1 beers, a barbaque & silent auction. Tickets are $25 at the door & all proceeds go to The Bandana Dan Memorial Music Scholarship Fund. Come have some fun & help raise money for inspiring musicians. Hope to see you there!!/events/461357933946785/


  121. Monica Moran said,

    June 17, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Please help the Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force by taking a five to ten minute survey on-line at @, and by sending this link to others in the Hilltowns. Survey respondents may be eligible to enter a raffle for $200 cash. The Task Force designed the survey to get a better understanding of how Hilltown residents view and respond to domestic abuse, and to find out if community members know where to get help. The Task Force will use survey results as the foundation for a community education and outreach campaign later this year. For more information about the survey or the Task Force, email


  122. June 17, 2013 at 8:32 am

    The 66th Annual Chesterfield Parade will be held on Thursday, July 4th, 2013 with the theme of “Children Are Our Future.” We invite YOU to help continue our tradition of 4th of July Fun by participating! All entries are welcome, with musical units especially encouraged. Please note that commercial vehicles must be decorated in patriotic colors or the parade theme to participate in the Parade.

    We’re pre-registering participants this year, so please email by June 20th with your information. This will help us plan parade route traffic and allow confirmation of your division assignment. In appreciation for your pre-registration, we’ll email you two free parking passes. You will have the option of updating Float details on parade day! Contact me if you have any questions.

    The Parade starts promptly at 10:30 AM from just south of the corner of South and Bryant Streets and travels north on South Street, then west on Main Road/Route 143 to Bagg Road, a total of about 1/2 mile. Parade entrants must be in place by 9:45 AM, to be guaranteed an announcement as they pass the reviewing stand.

    South Street from the center of town will be closed to traffic at 9 AM. Line-up is on South Street with access from Bisbee or Stage Roads to East Street, and signs on the left side designating Divisions. We are pushing the line-up back on South Street this year to leave the intersection free for emergencies. Also, livestock and horses must line up in the “Bancroft Field” near 54 South Street where there will be room for parking trailers. Regular parking will be available in the field off Bryant Street via Bagg Road for a $5 suggested donation (free if you remember your passes).

    Float and animal displays will be judged based on the use of the “Children Are Our Future” theme; thought and effort; visual appeal; and inclusion of activity. Prizes range from 1st at $75, to 5th at $15. Children’s categories will be: Most Beautiful; Storybook; Most Original; Funniest; and Bicycles, with ribbon prizes given in each category. Awards and Citations will be made in the line-up area, and announcements of prize winners will be made from the reviewing stand.

    For safety reasons, throwing of candy or other items into the crowd is prohibited!

    We will be updating our Facebook page with participant commitments at ‘Chesterfield 4th of July Parade’ so feel free to ‘like’ us there. Further details and the parade lineup are available at our website:

    Jennifer Peotter, Parade Participant Contact
    409 Main Road, Chesterfield, MA 01012; (413) 296-4422


  123. June 11, 2013 at 7:37 am

    Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
    Massachusetts Department of Public Health, 305 South Street, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130

    What is pertussis?
    Pertussis, also called “whooping cough,” is a disease caused by bacteria (germs) that is easily spread from person to
    person. Pertussis is usually mild in older children and adults, but it often causes serious problems in very young

    What are the symptoms of pertussis?
    Pertussis symptoms have three stages. The first stage begins like a cold with a runny nose, sneezing and cough.
    The cough lasts for a week or two then slowly gets worse. The second stage is marked by uncontrolled coughing
    spells, vomiting after coughing, and sometimes a whooping noise that you can hear when the person breathes in.
    During severe coughing spells or spasms, a person may stop breathing or become blue in the face from lack of air.
    Between spells, the person often appears to be well. This stage lasts for about 2 to 6 weeks. The final stage is when
    the symptoms begin to gradually lessen. The person still may have coughing spells, but is beginning to get better.
    The duration of classic pertussis is about 6 to 10 weeks. Adults, teens and vaccinated children often have milder
    symptoms that can be like bronchitis or some other cough illness.

    How is pertussis spread?
    The germs that cause pertussis live in the nose, mouth and throat, and are sprayed into the air when an infected
    person sneezes, coughs or talks. Other people nearby can then breathe in the germs. Touching a tissue or sharing a
    cup used by someone with pertussis can also spread the disease. The first symptoms appear about 7 to 10 days after
    a person is exposed. People with pertussis can spread the disease starting up to 2 weeks before until 3 weeks after
    the cough starts, or until they have finished 5 days of an appropriate antibiotic treatment.

    Who gets pertussis?
    In Massachusetts, pertussis is most common among people over 10 years old who have lost the protection they got
    from childhood vaccines. Infants are also very likely to get the disease since they are often too young to have full
    protection from the vaccine. However, anyone can catch pertussis and it can be hard to diagnose because
    symptoms may resemble a cold, followed by a nagging cough that lasts for weeks or months.

    Is pertussis dangerous?
    It can be, especially for infants. Pertussis can cause breathing problems, pneumonia, and swelling of the brain
    (encephalitis), which can lead to seizures and brain damage. Pertussis can also cause death, especially in very
    young infants, but this is rare. In older children, teens and adults, the disease is milder but may last for weeks or

    How is pertussis diagnosed?
    Pertussis can be very hard to diagnose. A doctor may think a patient has pertussis because of the symptoms, but a
    laboratory test is the only way to be sure. Pertussis is often diagnosed using a swab taken from the back of the nose.
    A blood test can also be done in some adolescents and adults.

    How is pertussis treated?
    The main treatment is plenty of rest and fluids, and antibiotics. Oxygen, medicine to help the patient breathe and
    mild sedatives are sometimes needed to help control severe coughing spells. Antibiotics can make the disease
    milder and the person less able to spread the disease if they are started early enough. Anyone who has been
    exposed to pertussis should see a doctor for antibiotics to prevent the disease, even if they were vaccinated.

    If I had pertussis in the past, can I get it again?
    Although pertussis disease is likely to provide immunity against pertussis, the duration of such immunity decreases
    over time. For this reason, people exposed to pertussis should see their doctor for antibiotics, even if they had the
    disease in the past. Children younger than 7 years old should have their immunization record reviewed by their
    doctor, in case they need more DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus and acellular pertussis) shots. Older children and adults
    who have never received a single dose of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis) vaccine should talk to
    their doctor about getting a Tdap shot.

    Can pertussis be prevented?
    Vaccination is the best way to protect against pertussis. Pertussis vaccine is given with diphtheria and tetanus
    vaccines in the same shot. The shot that is currently used for children less than 7 years old is called DTaP
    (diphtheria, tetanus, acellular pertussis). Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis) is a vaccine for children 7
    years of age and older, adolescents and adults. Currently only 1 dose of Tdap is recommended. Before the Tdap
    vaccine was available, adolescents and adults did not have a good way to prevent pertussis because immunity to
    pertussis from childhood vaccines decreases over time.

    What are the risks from these vaccines?
    All vaccines, like other medicines, can cause side effects in some people. The DTaP vaccine can cause redness,
    swelling where the shot was given, fever, drowsiness, or fretfulness. More serious reactions, including seizures and
    persistent crying lasting for more than 3 hours, are very rare. Getting the DTaP vaccine is much safer than getting
    pertussis, and most people do not have any problems with the vaccine. Many more young children will get
    pertussis if parents stop getting them vaccinated.
    The Tdap vaccine can cause pain, redness, swelling where the shot was given, fever, headache, nausea, vomiting,
    diarrhea and other mild problems. More serious reactions are very rare. Getting the Tdap vaccine is much safer
    than getting pertussis, and most people do not have any problems with the vaccine.

    Who should get DTaP vaccine?
    All children younger than 7 years old should get this vaccine unless they have a history of seizures or other brain
    problem or had a serious health problem after getting DTaP before. If not, your child should get DTaP when he or
    she is: 2 months old, 4 months old, 6 months old, 12–15 months old, and 4–6 years old.

    Who should get Tdap vaccine?
    Older children and adults should get one shot of Tdap instead of a regular tetanus shot (Td). Adolescents usually
    get the Tdap shot at their 11-12 year old visit. It is especially important for adults in contact with young infants,
    such as parents, grandparents, health care workers and child care providers, to get a single Tdap shot. Children 7 to
    10 years of age can get a dose of Tdap if they have not received all of their doses of DTaP and are not fully
    protected against pertussis.


  124. Phoebe said,

    May 9, 2013 at 11:37 pm

    I would like to thank Sienna and the HF community for rocking good advice re: ear piercing. My daughter and I visited PENELOPE at Haven Body Arts in Northampton last weekend. It was pretty intense, for both of us, but good all around.


  125. Monica Moran said,

    May 7, 2013 at 2:29 pm

    If you have a few minutes and live in the hilltowns can you help the Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force by taking a quick survey for us? You can find it on-line at @ Survey respondents may be eligible to enter a raffle for $200 cash. We are hoping to get 300 surveys done, and have about 100 so far. We think it will really help us with outreach and education if we can get enough responses. Thanks!! Monica Moran


  126. April 30, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    Well, it is little, and it is a library, and, yes, it is free… so it must be a Little Free Library.

    The first Little Free Library appeared in Hudson, Wisconsin in 2009 and now they can be found in every state and at least thirty-two countries. This one on Pomeroy Street in Wilbraham is the creation of Steve Fratoni in honor of his former neighbors Ted and Jane Gebeau. Ted and Jane started living on Pomeroy Street in 1947 when it was still just a dirt road through a field of strawberries and asparagus. Ted was instrumental in the founding of the Atheneum Society of Wilbraham and Jane was a librarian at the Town’s Library for over thirty years. Both were forced to move away in 2012 for health reasons. This Little Free Library represents their continued service to the Town and to their neighbors.

    On a broad scale these Libraries are a way of promoting literacy and exchanging reading material. However they quickly become more than that. They provide a neighborhood with a way to share common interests and a place for ideas and people to meet.

    Another aspect of community is the use of recycled building materials for the project. This library uses plywood scraps from a neighbor’s kitchen remodeling, wood from tornado broken trees, and lengths of ripped-up invasive Bittersweet vines.

    So how does it work? If you see a book inside that interests you, take it, read it, and enjoy it. When your done return it to this library, or pass it on to a friend, or place it in any other Little Free Library. If you own a book that you have finished and think that others would like to read add that to the Library, too. Even better, write a few notes to tell others what you liked about the book.

    As for what kind of books are in this Little Free Library, that you will have to find out for yourself. It is something that changes from day to day and maybe even minute to minute. Since this Library opened during National Poetry Month, its first patrons will find poetry books ranging from a picture book of Hand Rhymes for children to the Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson among other fiction and non-fiction titles.

    So don’t be frighten by this Little Free Library on Pomeroy Street, after all it is not really a house swept up in a tornado. Plus it is open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, to everyone who walks by.


  127. April 25, 2013 at 11:19 am

    You are invited to the Hilltown CDC Annual Meeting

    Tuesday, May 21st, 6 – 8 PM at the Hilltown CDC
    387 Main Street, Chesterfield, MA 01012

    6 – 6:45: snacks, drinks, social
    6:45 – 7:45: Welcome & Introductions of Board Members
    Update of Hilltown CDC’s current programs (Executive Director, Dave Christopolis)
    7:45 – 8:00: Election of Hilltown CDC Board Members and Westhampton Senior Housing Board Members

    The Annual Meeting is open to everyone ~ the facility is handicapped accessible.

    Please RSVP to Hilltown CDC by May 14 at 413-296-4536 ext. 118 or


  128. April 25, 2013 at 11:17 am

    The City of Pittsfield Recreation Program has teamed up with the Donald Gleason North Little League to host a free Major League Baseball Pitch, Hit & Run Competition for area youth.

    Date: Saturday, May 11, 2013
    9:00 – 11:00 a.m. for 7/8 year olds
    11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. for the 9/10 year olds
    2:00 – 5:00 p.m. for the 11/12 year olds
    Location: North Little League Field on Springside Ave.

    Pitch, Hit & Run™ is the official skills competition of Major League Baseball®. This grassroots program is designed to provide youngsters with an opportunity to compete, free of charge, in a competition that recognizes individual excellence in core baseball skills.

    Boys are divided into three age divisions: 7/8, 9/10, 11/12 and have the chance to advance through four levels of competition, including Team Championships at Major League ballparks and the National Finals at the 2013 MLB™ All-Star Game®.

    The individual Pitching, Hitting and Running Champions, along with the All-Around Champion in each age and gender group at the Local Competition will be awarded and advance to the Sectional Level of Competition.

    All participants must bring a copy of their birth certificate and have their parent or guardian fill out a registration/waiver form prior to the start of the competition. For questions concerning the competition, please contact Pittsfield’s Recreation Activities Coordinator, Rebecca Tefft at 413-499-9370.


  129. April 22, 2013 at 10:22 am


    Hard Rock Hotel & Casino New England will hold a community open house for members of the West Springfield community to ask questions and become more familiar with the proposed plan. Presentations will range from traffic and job creation to project design and philanthropy. A question and answer session will be held immediately following the presentations.

    April 24, 2013 – 7 – 9pm
    West Springfield Middle School 31 Middle School Drive West Springfield, Massachusetts


  130. April 19, 2013 at 11:17 am

    Valley Light Opera will soon be holding auditions for its fall production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s beloved operetta H.M.S. Pinafore. Audition times and dates are as follows:

    Saturday, April 27, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Helen Hills Hills Chapel, Smith College
    Saturday, May 4, First Congregational Church of Hadley, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
    Sunday, May 5, First Congregational Church of Hadley, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

    Auditions are free and open to those high school age and older. However, there is one role in this production–the “Midshipmite” (junior officer)–for someone as young as 10 or so.

    Pinafore will be performed on the second and third weekends of November at the Academy of Music in Northampton. Rehearsals begin in September. More info at

    H.M.S. Pinafore, or The Lass That Loved a Sailor, has been popular with audiences ever since its first performance in England in 1878. Gilbert and Sullivan had worked together before, but Pinafore was their first “blockbuster.” The infectious music and well-constructed libretto enabled the show to reach genuine fad status in America as well as England.


  131. April 14, 2013 at 9:18 am


    Producing Director Danny Eaton has announced the audition schedule for the Majestic Children’s Theater summer lineup of plays, which includes “Alice in Wonderland,” “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” and “Tiny Thumbelina.”

    Open auditions will take place on Saturday April 20 from 12 noon – 4:00 p.m. and on Sunday, April 21 from 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. High school-aged actors should prepare a short monologue and a song with CD accompaniment if interested in a musical role, and be ready for a cold reading. The Majestic is also seeking female actors ages 9 – 13 for the part of Alice in “Alice in Wonderland.”

    All auditions will be held at the Majestic Theater in West Springfield and must be booked in advance by calling (413) 747-7797. All performers are asked to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to their audition time to complete paperwork.

    Three shows are performed in rep for young audiences. Actors make a small stipend for the eight-week schedule. The first rehearsal takes place in late June (at a date to be announced later) and the final play performance is August 14.

    The Theater Project is a non-profit company that Eaton founded in 1991. Since March 1997 it has been in residence in West Springfield’s historic Majestic Theater, a century-old venue that was recently named “Best Place to See Theater” in a reader’s poll conducted by The Valley Advocate. The Theater Project was also named “Best Live Theatre Company” by readers of The Republican. In addition, Eaton’s work at the Majestic was awarded with a Regional Award for Outstanding Achievement in the American Theatre by the New England Theatre Conference. For additional information, visit


  132. April 5, 2013 at 10:19 am

    The Mahaiwe will present a conversation about children, families, and the future, celebrating the 40th anniversary of Free to Be…You and Me with Marlo Thomas, Alan Alda, and Letty Cottin Pogrebin on Sunday, August 18 at 7:00pm. A project of the Ms. Foundation for Women, Free to Be… You and Me, conceived by Marlo Thomas, is a CD, illustrated book, DVD, and theater piece, first released as a record album and illustrated book and then as an Emmy Award-winning ABC television special. This iconic family entertainment features many acclaimed personalities, including actors Alan Alda, Marlo Thomas, Carol Channing, and Cicely Tyson, football star Rosey Grier, and singers Michael Jackson and Diana Ross. Its message challenges gender stereotypes by emphasizing strong positive values such as personal aspiration, individuality, cooperation, self-esteem, tolerance, and comfort with one’s identity. From its beloved songs and stories, three generations of children have learned that anyone-girls and boys, women and men -can achieve anything, and everyone has the right to pursue their dreams. Tickets are $35 to $200 (preferred seating and post-show reception with the artists). Proceeds will benefit the Free To Be Foundation and Mahaiwe Education programs.

    Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center — 413-528-0100. 14 Castle Street. Great Barrington


  133. April 3, 2013 at 4:05 pm



    Berkshire Theatre Group seeks child and adult actors, musicians, backstage crew, technical support, usher staff and parent volunteers to participate in its upcoming community production, to be announced at a later date. The roles and positions are open to members of the Berkshire community, third grade through adults.
    Berkshire Theatre Group’s 8th Annual Children’s Theatre Production is directed by Travis G. Daly, with music direction by Mark Gionfriddo

    For the Children’s Theatre Production, rehearsals will begin Sunday, June 23, and run Monday-Friday 6pm-10pm and Saturdays 10am-4pm. Please note rehearsals will take place in Pittsfield, MA.

    The Children’s Theatre Production performances are August 8-12 and August 15-18 at The Colonial Theatre located at 111 South St. in Pittsfield, MA.

    Proceeds from the Children’s Theatre Production will benefit BTG PLAYS!, Berkshire Theatre Group’s Year-Round Education Program. Funding provided by BTG sponsors will cover the theatre’s direct production costs.


    Berkshire Theatre Group seeks child and adult actors to participate in its upcoming production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!. The roles and positions are open to members of the Berkshire community, third grade through adults.

    Oklahoma! is directed by Eric Hill, choreographed by Gerry McIntyre, with music direction by Steven Freeman

    Oklahoma! rehearsals begin on June 9. Please note rehearsals will take place in Stockbridge, MA.

    Oklahoma! performances are July 1-July 20 at The Colonial Theatre located at 111 South St. in Pittsfield, MA.


    Auditions times:

    Wednesday, April 24 from 6-10p
    Tuesday, April 30th from 6-10p
    Wednesday, May 1 from 6-10p

    All auditions will take place at:
    At The Colonial Theatre
    111 South St.
    Pittsfield, MA 01201

    Student auditions will be held during the first three hours of each session and the last hour will be for adults. Adults should be prepared to sing only 16 bars of a song and bring the accompanying sheet music that is in the key in which they prefer to sing. Only one song need be prepared to audition for both productions. Students will learn a song at the audition. Callbacks will take place as needed.

    Appointments are necessary to audition.
    To schedule an audition time slot or for further information, please call
    413-448-8084 x23.

    Questions? (413) 997-4444


  134. April 2, 2013 at 6:46 am

    Hilltown Families is accepting applications for our Fellowship Program. The Fellowship will afford the opportunity to identify the place-based educational value of local events and the importance of community engagement while gaining a better understanding of how community based resources and local organizations can work together to create a network that promotes learning and sustainability of local resources. The program is a two year position open to students or graduates living in Western Massachusetts with an ability to attend weekly meetings in Northampton, MA.
    Hours per week 10-15.
    Stipend/Wage: $100/week
    More info here:


  135. Pandora R said,

    March 19, 2013 at 12:45 pm


    When: Now until March 17th
    What: Please check out and support our new farm kitchen for school groups!

    Red Gate Farm is a farm education center in Buckland. We have been offering educational day programs for 10 years and are moving into multi-day school group visits. Kids will get days instead of hours to be immersed in farm life and work.

    Please help us buy a stove for our new farm kitchen to feed these soon arriving kids! Check out our Kickstarter campaign, donate if you can and help pass the word. This is an all or nothing drive, if we don’t make our goal by March 17th, we lose it all!



  136. Monica Moran said,

    March 18, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    You can help the Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force and possibly enter a $200 raffle by taking a survey at this link We will use survey results for an outreach and education campaign to help end domestic violence. The survey takes 5-10 minutes. Thank you for helping! For questions, email


  137. March 16, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Through a grant from MA Department of Early Education and Care, Pittsfield Public Schools and Pittsfield’s Coordinated Family and Community Engagement (CFCE) and Pittsfield’s Wee Read will be presenting evidence based early literacy programming for families in and around Pittsfield.

    The programming is Every Child Ready to Read @ your library and will be held at Pittsfield’s public library, the Berkshire Athenaeum. There will be a series of 1 hour sessions offered in various locations throughout Pittsfield. All sessions are free of charge.

    Every Child Ready to Read @ your Library happens at the Berkshire Athenaeum, Pittsfield’s Public Library.

    • Help your child develop early literacy skills.
    • Engage in the 5 early literacy practices: Talking Singing, Reading Writing, Playing
    • How to create an early literacy learning home
    • Developing early literacy skills can be FUN!
    • Learn about your library’s resources

    Wednesday, March 27 Parent Workshop (Children will have separate programming)

    Tuesday evenings 5:30-6:30pm:
    Tuesday, May 7 Fun with Letters for Parents and Children
    Tuesday, May 14 Fun with Words for Parents and Children
    Tuesday, June 4 Fun with Science and Math for Parents and Children
    Tuesday, June 25 Parent Workshop (Children will have separate programming)

    Saturdays 10:30-11:30am:
    Saturday, April 6 Fun For Parents and Children
    Saturday, May 11 Fun with Letters for Parents and Children
    Saturday, June 8 Fun with science and Math for Parents and Children

    Call the children’s department @ 413-499-9480 ex 203 to save a seat!!!

    Funded by MA Department of Early Education and Care through the Coordinated Family and Community Engagement grant through Pittsfield Public Schools.

    An additional session is scheduled for: Saturday, April 6 Fun For Parents and Children @ TreeHouse, 305 North St. RSVP 413-344-4435


  138. March 12, 2013 at 11:53 am

    Yoga teacher available to teach free classes.

    I’m a recently certified yoga teacher looking to provide a volunteer yoga class series locally for an underserved population. Ideally, you would recruit participants, have space and even mats for the yoga class to take place. I am looking to teach two separate volunteer gigs- one for adults and one for children. I am volunteering because I would like to use my yoga training to do some service in the community. If this sounds like something you might be interested in, please contact me to discuss.



  139. Maria Curtin-McKenna said,

    March 11, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Maria Curtin-McKenna is a Smith School for Social Work graduate student who is looking for mothers who have a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD to be part of her research study for her MSW thesis about the challenges, coping strategies and support received during the first year after the baby’s birth. Interviews are audio-taped and confidential. They will last no more than 1 hour and take place at a time and place convenient to the mother. A $15 gift card to Target is offered as a thank you. To be eligible to participate, the mother must be 18 years or older, have a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD, have given birth to a child who is age 2-60 months at the time of the interview, and be able to speak and read English. Participation closes as of April 15, 2013. Maria has worked with parents and babies in western Mass for nearly 30 years as an educator and support group facilitator. Contact Maria at 413-362-4053 or to be part of the study.


  140. February 20, 2013 at 10:21 am

    The Research and Academic Program at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute presents a slate of eight free lectures and public conversations over the next two months. All are held at 5:30 pm and are open to the public.

    · February 26: Bachelor Japanism, a lecture by Christopher Reed, Professor of English and Visual Culture at the Pennsylvania State University. Reed’s current project examines the ways Japanese aesthetics have been used to define non-normative forms of masculinity in the West.

    · March 5: Inside and Outside the Cave: Plato and Visual Politics, a lecture by political theorist Mark Reinhardt, Professor of American Civilization at Williams College. Rheinhardt’s current project draws on art history, theory, and practice, as well as the broader field of visual studies, to bring visuality more fully into political science.

    · March 16: Art History and Materiality, a public conversation that concludes a colloquium endeavoring to reveal the material underpinnings of art historical thought, both in its past traditions and in its current practices. The colloquium is convened by Jennifer Jane Marshall, Assistant Professor of North American Art at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities and Kate Mondloch, Associate Professor of Contemporary Art and Theory at the University of Oregon.

    · April 2: Re-skilling, Repurposing, and Research in Contemporary Art, a lecture by Claire Bishop, Associate Professor in the PhD Program in Art History at CUNY Graduate Center, New York. Bishop’s publications include Installation Art: A Critical History (2005) and the edited anthology Participation (2006).

    · April 6: This Is a Portrait if I Say So, a public conversation that concludes a curatorial roundtable sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery is currently developing an exhibition, scheduled to open in 2015, that will examine the rise and evolution of symbolic, abstract, and conceptual portraiture in American art. This preparatory event will help form the intellectual framework for an exhibition that hopes to reassess the theoretical underpinnings of portraiture as a genre, practice, and social activity over the course of the past century. This event is convened by Jonathan Frederick Walz, Curator, Cornell Fine Arts Museum; Kathleen Merrill Campagnolo, Independent Curator and Scholar; and Anne Collins Goodyear, Associate Curator of Prints and Drawings, National Portrait Gallery.

    · April 16: Colored Photographs and White Weddings—A Study of Reception in South Africa, a lecture by John Peffer, a specialist in modern African art and photography and Associate Professor of Art History at Ramapo College. Peffer’s current project examines the vernacular uses of photography in South Africa with special emphasis on hand-colored wedding photographs in Soweto from the 1950s.

    · April 20: Conditions of Visibility in Greek and Roman Art, a public conversation that concludes a Clark/Oakley Colloquium. The colloquium is convened Jas’ Elsner, Corpus Christi College; Guy Hedreen, Williams College; Richard Neer, University of Chicago; and Verity Platt, Cornell University. In this conversation, the panel will address the following questions: What were the conditions of visibility for “them” (the Greek and Romans), and what are the conditions for “us” (the modern public)? What were, and what are, the necessary and sufficient conditions for an image to be visible in the way art history needs it to be?

    · April 30: Beyond the Skin of Appearance, a lecture by Beat Wyss, Kress Fellow in the Literature of Art and Professor of Art History and Media Theory at Karlsruhe University for Arts and Design. Wyss, a member of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences, is currently working on a project that traces the Platonic legacy in occidental aesthetics.


  141. Tiffany said,

    February 18, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    Hi, looking for a homeschool group in the Westfield area……desperately need to connect with other local homeschoolers.


  142. February 18, 2013 at 8:41 am


    Auditions will be held for the Missoula Children’s Theatre (MCT) musical production of SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS Monday, February 25th at the Amherst Middle School Cafeteria from 4:15pm to 6:15pm. All those auditioning should arrive at 4:00 and plan to stay for the full two hours. Some of those cast in the show will be asked to stay for a rehearsal immediately following the auditions.

    If you’ve loved the classic story, you’ll be delighted by this fresh and cheerful new production! Among the roles to be cast are Snow White, Queen, seven Dwarfs, her Forest Friends, Black Forest Creatures, a Magic Mirror, Bats, Henchmen and the King. Students from Kindergarten age to 12th grade are encouraged to audition. No advance preparation is necessary. Assistant Directors will also be cast to aid in rehearsals throughout the week, and to take on essential backstage responsibilities. There are 50-60 roles available, with parts in every age group. This is a group audition, and no advance preparation is necessary–though a smile always helps! There is a $5 Registration Fee for all those who are cast (waivers available).

    The Missoula Children’s Theatre touring productions are complete with costumes, scenery, props and makeup. The MCT Tour Actor/Directors will conduct rehearsals throughout the week from 4:00-8:30 Monday, February 25th – Friday, March 1st. Not everyone will need to be present at every rehearsal.

    SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS will be presented on Saturday, March 2nd at 1:30 pm and 4:00 pm in the Amherst Middle School Auditorium. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students under 18 and seniors.

    For more information, go to “Children’s Theatre” at, or call Susan at 413-461-6722. SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS—Join us for a magical time in the forest!


  143. Marie said,

    February 14, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    PeopleLink, a non-profit that specializes in homestay programs is currently looking for families to host Japanese students or teachers from March 22-28th!
    Please contact or call 413 230 1121 for more informatoin!


  144. Kira Jewett said,

    February 11, 2013 at 7:57 pm

    The keys have found their owner!!! Hooray!


  145. Kira Jewett said,

    February 11, 2013 at 5:22 am

    FOUND: at Northampton Hospital Hill sledding area Sunday afternoon 2/10. Set of keys. Mazda black plastic key with electronic lock, another round metal key, and blue East Heaven keychain. Call 413-582-0346


  146. February 8, 2013 at 1:19 pm


    Jacob’s Pillow Dance and MASS MoCA co-present world-renowned contemporary ballet ensemble Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal March 2-3 at MASS MoCA’s Hunter Center for the Performing Arts. The Montréal-based dance company blends a variety of dance styles, influences, and music in three diverse works by prominent, international choreographers: Wen Wei Wang of Canada, Spain’s Cayetano Soto, and Israeli-American dancemaker Barak Marshall. This co-presentation coincides with the final month of MASS MoCA’s Oh, Canada exhibit, the largest survey of Canadian contemporary art ever produced outside of Canada.

    Under the artistic direction of Louis Robitaille, the dancers of Ballets Jazz successfully bridge contemporary innovation with classical training and technique. With sleek, highly-skilled performers and a wide-ranging repertory, the company is known for its distinctive, theatrical style that engages a broad audience. Founded in 1973, Ballets Jazz is celebrating its 40th anniversary season. This engagement marks the company’s first return visit to western Massachusetts since its appearance at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in 2010.

    Jacob’s Pillow Executive and Artistic Director Ella Baff comments, “It’s a perfect match for the Pillow and MASS MoCA to bring a major dance company, Les Ballets Jazz de Montreal, to complement an unprecedented exhibit, Oh, Canada. I think audiences will be very excited to see dance and visual art from our neighbor to the north. And did I mention that the dancers are sensational?”

    The program includes three diverse works by acclaimed international choreographers. Choreographer Wen Wei Wang was born in China and now resides and works in Canada. His high-voltage, provocative work, Night Box, combines contemporary ballet with street dance to express the love, loss, sensuality, and joy of urban nightlife. Michael Crabb of The National Post calls the work a “fascinating imaginary world of burgeoning manhood and confused desire…It’s all brilliantly theatrical, in turns witty, poignant.” Set to a score by composer Philip Glass, Spanish choreographer Cayetano Soto’s powerful duet Zero In On creates a fresh take on the traditional pas de deux form and ”subverts beauty to convey something else” (Rebecca Ritzel of The Washington Post). Harry, a work by Israeli-born, Los Angeles-based choreographer Barak Marshall, concludes the program. This theatrical, energetic take on the complexities of human dynamics and conflict features an eclectic score ranging from Israeli folk songs to Balkan Beatbox to The Andrews Sisters. Marshall served as house choreographer for Batsheva Dance Ensemble in Israel from 1999 to 2001. His company made its U.S. debut at Jacob’s Pillow with his full-evening MONGER at the 2010 Festival.

    The related MASS MoCA exhibit, Oh Canada, features works by more than 60 Canadian artists who hail from every province and nearly every territory in the country, spanning multiple generations and working in all media. MASS MoCA curator Denise Markonish spent three years traveling across Canada to view hundreds of exhibitions in museums and galleries, visiting over 400 artists’ studios, and making connections with a full range of artists working today. Visitors who see both the Les Ballets Jazz performance and Oh, Canada exhibit can expect to walk away with a wide-ranging snapshot of the Canadian contemporary performing and visual arts landscapes.

    Audiences can continue their exploration of Canadian dance companies during the 2013 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. From July 17-21, Ballet BC, one of today’s leading contemporary ballet companies from Vancouver, British Columbia, performs a program of contemporary works set to the music of Mozart, Puccini, Rodgers & Hart, and John Zorn. From August 7-11, Montréal-based O Vertigo Danse performs La Vie Qui Bat, a powerful, award-winning work danced to Steve Reich’s “Drumming,” performed live by the Quebec Contemporary Music Society. From August 14-18, La Otra Orilla of Montréal will present an evening of contemporary flamenco dance, video art, and evocative live music.

    Through the financial support of the Irene Hunter Fund for Dance, Jacob’s Pillow Dance and MASS MoCA have co-presented performing arts programming since the museum was founded in 1999. In the spirit of deep collaboration, this partnership creates opportunities for visual and performing artists by encouraging cross-disciplinary experimentation; cultivates new dance audiences in the Berkshires by presenting innovative, high-quality performances; and expands the public’s understanding of the creative process. Past co-presentations include Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, STREB, MOMIX, DanceBrazil, Stephen Petronio Company, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, Armitage Gone! Dance, Cuba’s Los Muñequitos de Matanzas, and Chunky Move.

    Performance and Ticket Information:
    413.662.2111 or

    MASS MoCA is located at 87 Marshall Street, North Adams, MA 01247.
    For additional information on Jacob’s Pillow and its 81st season, visit


  147. February 8, 2013 at 12:40 pm


    Beginning this month, Williams College will sponsor “Power, Freedom, and Madness: Contemporary Francophone Caribbean Film Festival.” Organized by Professors Katarzyna Pieprzak and Neil Roberts, the festival will feature three films that examine the ideas of historical and fictitious representations of leadership, power, and freedom in the French-speaking Caribbean and the contemporary significance in the region, France, and global politics. All films will be screened at Images Cinema. The first film, “Toussaint L’Ouverture,” will be shown on Monday, Feb. 18 in two parts, the first starting at 5:30pm and the second at 7:30pm. The second film, “Aliker,” will be screened at 7 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 25, and the third film, “Moloch Tropical,” will be shown at 7 p.m. on Monday, March 4. The events are free and open to the public.

    “Toussaint L’Ouverture” (2012) is an action-packed film that chronicles the life of the Haitian leader. L’Ouverture led the world’s first successful slave revolt as he defeated Napoleon Bonaparte and won independence for Haiti from France. L’Ouverture established Haiti as the first black nation in the western hemisphere and the first black free nation. The success of the Haitian Revolution had strong consequences for slavery throughout the Americas.

    “Aliker” (2009) narrates the story of André Aliker, the Martinican journalist who was assassinated in 1934. Aliker was a communist militant who was known as a champion of journalism as a form of free expression and as the means for pursuing truth in colonial Martinique in the 1930s. The film is directed by Guy Deslauriers and based on a script by Martinican novelist Patrick Chamoiseau. The film stars the Cape Verde-born hip-hop artist Stomy Bugsy.

    “Moloch Tropical” (2010) is a psychological drama about the final moments of a fictional Caribbean president as a violent revolution erupts. On a day he set aside for a national holiday, the democratically elected ruler of a small tropical nation finds that the people have taken to the streets in chaotic protests against him. The ruler tries to hold on to his power during the revolutionary unrest. Haitian-born director Raoul directs the film, which stars Jimmy Jean-Louis.

    The event is sponsored by the departments of Romance Languages, Political Science, and the Center for Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Generous support came from Leadership Studies, Africana Studies, the Department of History, the Davis Center, and the
    W. Ford Schumann Fund ’50 Program in Democratic Studies. For more information, or


  148. February 4, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Berkshire Museum, SABIC, and Pittsfield Public Schools host
    The Third Annual Science and Innovation Fair
    February 12, 2013

    On Tuesday, February 12, 2013, Berkshire Museum, in collaboration with SABIC and Pittsfield Public Schools, will host the third annual Science and Innovation Fair, featuring the Taconic High School Science and Engineering Academy and the Pittsfield High School Quark Science Club.

    Approximately 170 Pittsfield Public High School students will exhibit more than 80 projects that demonstrate skills and concepts across a range of engineering and science disciplines; the participating student-scientists and student-engineers have conducted scientific research and completed engineering projects under the guidance of their faculty advisors from Taconic and Pittsfield High Schools.

    On February 12, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., admission to the Museum will be free for all, thanks to the generosity of SABIC; visitors will see the Science Fair projects as well as the Museum’s exhibitions and galleries.

    “Scientific research and the application of knowledge in engineering and technology are critical drivers of the twenty-first century global economy,” says Van Shields, executive director of the Berkshire Museum. “The Museum is enthusiastic about partnering with our schools to host the Science and Innovation Fair and other programs that stimulate student interest in science, technology, engineering and math.”

    SABIC will provide the prizes as well as lunch and snacks for all participating student-scientists. Students with winning projects will advance to the Region 1 Science Fair at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in March and then on to the state Science Fair at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    On the day of the Science and Innovation Fair, the participating students will have their projects set up and ready for viewing by visitors to the Museum by 10 a.m. Between 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., all fifth-grade students in the Pittsfield Public Schools will visit the Science Fair, and will be able to ask questions and be inspired by the entries. School groups in Pittsfield enjoy free visits to the museum thanks to the generosity of James and Margaret Beauregard.

    A prestigious group of approximately sixty judges representing leading local businesses and educational institutions will evaluate the exhibits between 5 and 6:30 p.m., interviewing the participants about their work, and then convening to determine award winners.

    Two awards ceremonies will be held, one for each school. The first begins at 7:30 p.m., and the second at 8:30, with awards presented by Kristen Pearson, Science Fair coordinator at Taconic High School, Scott Eldridge, Science Fair coordinator at Pittsfield High School, Brenda Manarchik of SABIC; and Van W. Shields, executive director of Berkshire Museum.

    The snow date is February 13.

    Science and Innovation Fair Schedule
    10 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Free admission for all to the Museum courtesy SABIC
    10 a. m. to 1:30 p.m.: All Pittsfield Public School fifth grade students will visit the Science Fair courtesy the Beauregard Family
    5 to 6:30 p.m.: Judging
    6:30 to 7:30 p.m.: Family, friends and public visit projects; admission is free during evening hours
    7:30 to 8 p.m.: Award Ceremony
    8:30 to 9 p.m.: Award Ceremony


  149. February 4, 2013 at 10:27 am

    Montessori School of the Berkshires — Free Parent-Child Playgroups from 9:00 to 11:00 am, on Saturdays (February 9, March 2, April 6, and May 4). Come experience the wonder of the Toddler Room (age 16 months+) and Children’s House (age 3–5 years old). You and your child can explore the hands-on learning materials, create art, prepare snack, enjoy music and stories, and delight in playtime. Please register at or call 413-637-3662.


  150. January 29, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Feedback wanted from Pittsfield area residents, schools, businesses & organizations:


    Monday, February 11, 2013
    6:00 PM
    Morningside Community School
    Community Room
    100 Burbank Street, Pittsfield, MA


    Monday, February 25, 2013
    5:30 PM
    Conte Community School
    Community Room
    200 West Union Street, Pittsfield, MA

    We want to hear your comments about the issues that affect your life such as:


    These public input sessions are being sponsored by the Pittsfield Department of Community Development to assist in the preparation of the City’s fiscal year 2014 Annual Action Plan, regarding the use of Pittsfield’s community development resources.

    If you are unable to attend the public input session, you can submit your written or oral thoughts by contacting the Department of Community Development, City Hall, 70 Allen Street, Room 205, Pittsfield, MA. Call (413) 499-9368 or TTY (413) 499-9340. Persons with special needs should contact the Department of Community Development and every effort will be made to accommodate your request.

    The FY 2014 Annual Action Plan will address the needs of low and moderate-income persons and households as required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program.

    Please share and forward this to others who may be interested.


  151. January 29, 2013 at 9:05 am

    Kindergarten registration for all Pittsfield Public Elementary Schools for the 2013-2014 school year will take place at the School Administration Center (basement level), 269 First Street in Pittsfield according to the following schedule:

    If child’s last name begins with:

    A-F Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – February 25, 26, 27
    G-L Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – March 4, 5, 6
    M-Q Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – March 11, 12, 13
    R-Z Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – March 18, 19, 20

    Mondays: 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
    Tuesdays: 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m.
    Wednesdays: 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

    All children entering kindergarten in September 2013 must be 5 years old by December 1, 2013, born on or before December 1, 2008. Parents or guardians must bring the following documents to register their children: the child’s birth certificate, proof of address (a utility bill with service address or a purchase or rental/lease agreement), and child’s immunization records (including the most recent physical).


  152. January 27, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    REACH, a multi-city exhibition of contemporary practitioners, seeks assistance of volunteers for art installation, exhibition guards, and event preparations. This unique volunteer-run exhibition planned for April and May 2013, looks to increase awareness of intermedia art to the neighboring cities of Easthampton and Holyoke. Volunteers may be interested in arts administration, art installation, collaboration, and community building.

    Whatever your skill set or interests are, don’t be shy, reach out and ask what’s involved. There are many shifts to choose from starting in April 2013 and running through May. Please sign-up on the reach website at and REACH organizers will be in touch. Be part of this exciting event!

    This program is supported in part by a grant from the Easthampton Cultural Council, a local agency that is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

    REACH invites local and national artists to show in a multi-city exhibition of contemporary practitioners working in a variety of non-traditional formats including installation, interactive sculpture, found media, performance, and future-media. REACH promotes visibility, aims to bridge the arts and spaces in Easthampton and Holyoke, MA, encourages collaborative experimentation, and invites community members to participate in experiencing an array of contemporary art practices that are exhibited in a variety of traditional, nontraditional, and underutilized spaces throughout participating cities. REACH Fest 2013 partners include Wistariahurst Museum, ECA+ Gallery, Eastworks, The City of Holyoke, MGHPCC, and Popcorn Noir.


  153. Tina Acker said,

    January 21, 2013 at 5:45 pm

    Winterfest Amherst
    Saturday February 9 1:00 – 6:30pm
    Admission: $5 Kids, $8 Adults, Family of 3+ $20

    An afternoon of fun in the snow (if there’s no snow we make some!)

    Activities include: Superpipe Sledding Hill;Chili Tasting Contest; Muddy Brook Farm Wagon Rides; Frosty Fun Kids Carnival; Hoola Hoop Extravaganza; Orange Ball Long Drive Contest; Family Ice Sculpture Contest; Wildcat O’Halloran Band; ARHS Nordic Ski Team Lessons and Demo; Closest to Pin Golf Contest; Frisbee Long Toss and Putting Contest; Face Painting ; Best in Snow Dog Show; Cardboard Classic Sled Race; Pineapple Dance’s Elektrik Boyz; Cider Donut Eating ; ZumbaFest

    And the best part!!!! FIREWORKS

    For full schedule and information, updates etc. visit us on Facebook at Winterfest Amherst


  154. January 21, 2013 at 3:54 pm


    The town of Lee is holding it’s second-annual Cabin Fever Festival February 15th-22, 2013. This weeklong festival takes place during school vacation week and offers fun, free events every day for all ages.

    Event highlights include a “Strut Your Stuff” bathing suit dash down Main Street followed by awards, downtown merchant festivities, ice sculpting, and a snow-sculpting competition for kids. Other entertainment ithorughout the week includes a dog fashion show, Improv comedy night, Tap and Blues, Open Microphone, Story Hour, short film festival and Taste of Lee restaurant night, and more…

    The mission of the festival is to help Berkshire residents to break out of the mid-winter blues. To show their support, Lee businesses have the opportunity to sponsor the festival and/or offer deals or specials, valid all week as an incentive for residents to bundle up and make their way downtown.

    Lee is taking a creative, low-cost approach to a fun community festival, turning the historically slow week in February into a unique fun-filled week benefiting shopkeepers and residents alike.

    For more information visit


  155. January 21, 2013 at 3:47 pm

    2013 WinklePicker Festival to celebrate Mardi Gras food, music & culture.

    Music from Steve Riley & The Mamou Playboys, Eilen Jewell, The Primate Fiasco, Charles Neville, Salvation Alley String Band

    New Orleans Cooking Workshop, authentic New Orleans Dinners, Gospel Brunch, Kids Mardi Gras Ball & more

    February 15-17, 2013 in Ashfield, Mass.

    Italy & Brazil have Carnivale. Germany has Fasching. New Orleans has Mardi Gras. Ashfield, Massachusetts has WinklePicker — When New Englanders Go Barnyard Crazy. February 15, 16, & 17, 2013.

    Advance tickets are now available for the second annual WinklePicker Festival which will once again bring the music, food and culture of New Orleans to the streets of Ashfield, Massachusetts, February 15-17, 2013. WinklePicker is a weekend of the best food, music, cooking instruction, conversation and masquerading – New Orleans-style. This year’s event will kick off Friday night, February 15 with an authentic New Orleans dinner at Elmer’s store by chef Carlos Neville. The longtime New Orleans chef and culinary school pastry and baking tutor will then teach a special WinklePicker cooking class focused on New Orleans cuisine Saturday morning at Elmer’s Store. Things really start moving Saturday afternoon at the kids Mardi Gras ball with The Primate Fiasco, known for their high-energy mix of old timey Dixie Jazz, modern groove/funk/improv music. Saturday night it’s the grown-ups’ turn with a Mardi Gras Ball hosted by multi-Grammy nominee Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys who work up the crowd with a hot two-step, then turn on a dime and deliver an a cappella ballad, then play something that sounds like Howlin’ Wolf fell in lust with a Creole girl. Sunday WinklePicker events include a Gospel Brunch at the Ashfield Congregational Church, an afternoon concert and conversation with Charles Neville, and a grande finale show with Valley favorite Eilen Jewell, who has already earned comparison to Lucinda Williams, Peggy Lee and Gillian Welch, plus special guests The Salvation Alley String Band. Both balls and the Sunday concerts will be at the Ashfield Town Hall – site of last year’s sold out Buckwheat Zydeco WinklePicker ball. Complete WinklePicker event details and ticketing information is available at

    WinklePicker :: Weekend Schedule Summary (February 15-17, 2013)
    All events takes place in Ashfield, Massachusetts.
    Doors open 30 minutes before showtime for all ticketed events.

    Friday, February 15th
    5:00 pm
    New Orleans Dinner at Elmer’s with Chef Carlos Neville
    Elmer’s Store, 396 Main Street, Ashfield, MA
    Reservations required: (413) 628-4003
    Saturday, February 16th
    10:30 am – 12 noon
    “Cooking New Orleans”
    Our Annual Cooking Class with Chef Carlos Neville
    Upstairs @ Elmer’s Store (396 Main Street, Ashfield, MA)
    Tickets: $65 available online and in-person at Elmer’s Store (413) 628-4003
    2:00 – 3:30 pm
    Kids Mardi Gras Ball
    with music by The Primate Fiasco
    Ashfield Town Hall (412 Main St., Ashfield, MA)
    Tickets at the door: $5 child / $10 adult / $20 family of 4
    8:00 pm
    Grown Folks Mardi Gras Ball
    with music by Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys
    with special guests The Primate Fiasco
    Ashfield Town Hall (412 Main St., Ashfield, MA)
    Tickets: $25adv/$30dos, available online & in-person at Elmer’s Store (413) 628-4003
    After the Ball / 10:00 pm
    The After Party continues at Elmer’s
    with music by The Primate Fiasco
    Elmer’s Store (396 Main Street, Ashfield, MA) (413) 628-4003
    Admission free with Mardi Gras Ball ticket.
    Sunday, February 17th
    10:00 am – 1:00 pm
    Elmer’s Gospel Brunch
    Ashfield Congregational Church (Main St., Ashfield, MA)
    Reservations required: (413) 628-4003
    2:30 – 4:30 pm
    An Afternoon with Charles Neville
    The legendary Charles Neville plays his music and talks about his life as a musician – from the Rabbitsfoot Minstrel show to the Neville Brothers – an extremely interesting event!
    Ashfield Town Hall (412 Main St., Ashfield, MA)
    Tickets: $10adv/$15dos, available online & in-person at Elmer’s Store (413) 628-4003
    8:00 pm
    The Grand Finale
    Eilen Jewell
    With special guests The Salvation Alley String Band
    Sit down, stand up; dance, listen, groove. It’s a long weekend. You can rest later.
    Ashfield Town Hall (412 Main St., Ashfield, MA)
    Tickets: $20adv/$25dos, available online & in-person at Elmer’s Store (413) 628-4003


  156. January 19, 2013 at 8:14 am

    This year to celebrate Valentine’s Day, Images Cinema wants you to declare your love from the Big Screen! Using a template (Casablanca, Princess Bride, or Breakfast and Tiffany’s-themed), or an image of your own choosing, we’ll create a Big Screen Valentine for that special someone. Each Big Screen Valentine will show at Images Cinema as part of its preshow for two weeks, February 1 through February 14. The deadline for placing your order is January 28. The cost is $10, and Images Cinema is a 501(c)3 organization and your donation may be tax deductible. Images Cinema is located at 50 Spring Street, Williamstown, MA.

    Order forms can be picked up at the Images Cinema box office, on the Images Cinema website, or mailed to you by request (call 413-458-1039 ).

    Find the order form for Big Screen Valentines at


  157. January 18, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    The 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival in Pittsfield, Mass. is one month away, but there are plenty of ways to become a participant in Berkshire County’s second annual winter contemporary arts festival. From a smartphone film festival and a call for PechaKucha presenters to calls for up-and-coming singer-songwriters and 10”x10” artworks, this is an arts festival with many opportunities to join in.

    “The 10X10 festival was a huge success last year in part because there were so many opportunities for local artists, performers and filmmakers to participate,” noted Megan Whilden, Director of Cultural Development for the City of Pittsfield. “Over 120 new works were created for the festival and over 40 events were held. We’re expecting to see even more involvement and creativity this year!”


    The Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF) and the Beacon Cinema team up once again to present the Smartphone Film Festival—a fun take on the film festival scene. The BIFF is looking for submissions of films—10 minutes or less in length—shot using the iPhone, iPad and other versions of smartphones, including various alternative cinematic ‘apps’ to create a desired look or effect. Experimental, action, drama and even music videos are just some of the genres that will be considered. Films must be submitted to Lauren Ferin at by February 1, 2013. Selections will be announced in early February and will be screened at the Beacon Cinema during the 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival. Sponsored by Mad Macs in Pittsfield, Mass., prizes will be awarded to the top three local submissions as chosen by their audiences. For more information on the Smartphone Film Festival, click here.


    Berkshire Museum is seeking 10 presenters who want to change the world, shamelessly self-promote, share their passion or anything that will intrigue an audience as part of its popular international networking event PechaKucha. Loosely translating to “chit-chat” or “blah-blah” in Japanese, PechaKucha nights consist of a series of PowerPoint presentations, each six minutes and 40 seconds. The catch is that each presentation comprises of 20 slides, each projected for only 20 seconds, that progress automatically. The fifth installment of PechaKucha, titled (10+10) × (10+10), takes place on February 19 at 7pm as part of the 10X10 Upstreet Winter Arts Festival. Presentations begin at 7:20pm. To sign up, email Craig Langlois at, including your name, the title of your presentation and a brief description on what you want to present of three sentences or less. Please confirm your presentation by January 30. PowerPoint’s are due February 15. To sample past PechaKucha presentations, click here.


    The Marketplace Café is seeking 10 young singer-songwriters to perform in one of two special performances. Potential performers can be male or female. They must be under 30 years of age and be prepared to play 20 minutes of original music. Performances are scheduled to take place on Thursday & Friday, February 21-22 from 6:30pm-8:30pm, featuring five singer-songwriters each night. Each interested performer should submit a proposal including a bio, performance history and a sample of his or her music to by Friday, February 1, 2013. You may also drop a proposal off in person at The Marketplace Café at 53 North Street in Pittsfield, Mass. For more information on submitting a proposal for consideration for The Marketplace Café’s young artists’ showcase as part of the 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival, click here or call 413-358-4777.


    The Berkshire Art Association is seeking 10 inch by 10 inch original artworks to be donated for the 10×10 RAP (Real Art Party), created in collaboration with Storefront Artist Project and Berkshire Museum, a fundraiser benefiting Berkshire County art students that will be held February 20th at the Berkshire Museum. Artists get a free ticket to PechaKucha and will be listed on the Artist Registry at All artwork must measure 10 inches by 10 inches prepared for hanging or display. Artwork may be in any medium and should reflect the quality of your usual work. Artists may submit up to three pieces. To sign up, please submit your name, email address, website URL and title and medium for each piece to Artwork should be dropped off at the Berkshire Museum on February 10th or 11th between 1pm and 4pm. For more information on how to participate in 10×10 RAP, click here.

    The 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival is a collaborative effort spearheaded by Barrington Stage Company and the City of Pittsfield and coordinated through a steering committee that includes the Beacon Cinema, Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF), Berkshire Museum, Lichtenstein Center for the Arts and the City of Pittsfield, Mission Bar + Tapas and yBar. Formerly 10×10 on North, the 2013 festival expands in size and geography to include more programming in venues throughout the city’s newly designated Upstreet Cultural District, including North and South Streets in Downtown Pittsfield. Berkshire Gas is the lead sponsor of the 2013 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival. Additional support is generously provided by the following sponsors: Massachusetts Cultural Council, Berkshire Magazine, The Berkshire Eagle, Lamar Advertising, Barrington Stage Company, and the City of Pittsfield. 2013 festival partners also include Alchemy Initiative, Barrington Stage Company, Berkshire Art Association, Berkshires Jazz, Berkshire Museum, Gallery 25, Hancock Shaker Village, the Royal Berkshire Improv Troupe, WAM Theatre, and WordXWord, as well as a comedy show presented by Thomas Attila Lewis. This year, the 2013 festival will also include a family arts component, as the festival takes place during February school break. Family programming participants include Berkshire Museum, Bisque, Beads & Beyond, Hancock Shaker Village and Miss Hall’s School.

    Visit×10 or find 10×10 Upstreet on Facebook for more information about tickets and the schedule of events or contact the City of Pittsfield Office of Cultural Development at 413-499-9348 or


  158. January 14, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    Berkshire Arts Center:

    The Westfield River Wild & Scenic Advisory Committee and the Becket Arts Center invite artists to submit work for TRAVEL THE WATERSHED. Six artists will be selected by jury to paint the display cases for Travel the Watershed program sponsored by WRWSAC. Please go to the the BAC website for more details and the full application:

    The Travel the Watershed display cases will be displayed throughout the summer at BAC for our Summer Solstice Bash, then at the ARTS ALIVE events in Worthington in July and Huntington’s North Hall in August before rotating throughout the watershed regional libraries.

    Members of the WRWSAC, BAC, Arts Alive and North Hall will participate in the selection of participating artists. Each artists receiving a stipend for their work as well as the chance to be seen throughout the area.

    We are proud to present this program as the first BAC Hilltowns Engaging ART program.

    TO fill out the online application you will need the following:

    Personal contact information
    Statement of your own interest in the Westfield River Wild & Scenic (250 words)
    Resume (optional)
    Images of your artwork – 4 required with 2 additional – 1MB per image – 1 image may be a proposed sketch for the project.

    Deadline is midnight, March 1st, 2013 – announcements and cases distributed March 23rd. Finished work to be delivered to BAC by May 31.


  159. January 14, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity is looking for working low-income families who are interested in learning more about Habitat homeownership opportunities in Easthampton and Turners Falls. An information session will be held on Saturday, February 9th, 10 – 12 noon at the Greenfield Savings Bank, 325A King Street in Northampton.

    During that meeting, potential applicants will learn about Habitat’s selection criteria and how to prepare to be successful in the application process. The selection criteria include need, ability to make modest mortgage payments, and willingness to partner with Habitat, such as participating in the construction of the home. To prepare for making an application, those interested will be encouraged to take such steps as attending a first-time homebuyer’s course and checking their credit standing.

    Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity (PVH) serves Hampshire and Franklin Counties; they seek to eliminate homelessness and substandard housing by making decent affordable shelter a matter of conscience and action for all people. PVH builds homes with volunteer labor and donations of material, supplies, land, and services. PVH then sells each home with a no-interest mortgage to a low-income family. The family becomes an active Habitat partner contributing many hours of sweat equity during the construction of their home. Pioneer Valley Habitat for Humanity has helped more than 34 families since their founding in 1989.

    For information about becoming a Habitat homeowner, donating, or volunteering please visit our website at or call the Pioneer Valley Habitat office at 413-586-5430.


  160. January 13, 2013 at 10:24 am

    Pancake Breakfast Set to Kick Off 2013 Relay
    American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Hampshire County to be held on Feb. 9

    NORTHAMPTON – The kick-off breakfast for this year’s annual American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Hampshire County will take place on Saturday, Feb. 9 at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish Hall, at 10 Hawley St., from 9:30 a.m. to noon.

    The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost and fight back against the disease.

    At this year’s Relay in Hampshire County, which will be held from 3 p.m. June 14 through 3 p.m. June 15 at Look Memorial Park in Florence, teams of participants take turns walking on a make-shift track to raise money for cancer research and programs that benefit cancer patients and their families.

    Last year’s Relay raised $262,913 for the American Cancer Society; 230 cancer survivors participated, and there were 24 new teams and 104 new individual walkers.

    The February kick-off is free and open to the public. An information fair at the event will highlight programs and services for cancer survivors and caregivers. Teams can register to participate in the Relay, and table space will be available so team members can begin fundraising for this year’s Relay.

    Registration is preferred by Feb. 4 but walk-ins are welcome; to register, contact Karen O’Brien at (413) 493-2113.

    For more information about the Relay For Life, go to


  161. Catherine Wolkowicz said,

    December 25, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    Sandy Hook First Grade Survivors Fund

    A hilltown family has a personal connection to the tragedy in Sandy Hook. I have a connection. My sister, her first grade son and husband live there. They were lucky. If there is such a thing for any child who attends Sandy Hook Elementary School.

    My nephew is a first grader whose life is forever changed. A first grader who knew all 20 children. Some of them were on his baseball team this summer. At his birthday party. Too many funerals attended last week to keep track. The story is powerful; the details too hard to put to paper. This family had a few bumps and bruises along the road of life before December 14. Things families all over the country push through in a recession. Loss of a job, balancing skyrocketing health insurance costs on a single family income.

    Now they have something new to worry about. A level of grief and suffering that money can’t fix.

    My sister’s Sandy Hook family, and the others like them, shouldn’t have to think about how to pay the mortgage right now. We can’t all be there every day to hold the hand of the child, or hug the mom or the dad. But we can help provide funds to reduce the other daily stresses tough economic times can bring. A fund has been created for the present and future needs of the first grade children (and their families) that survived. So that these families can have time to focus on grieving, supporting their children, maybe even taking leave from work to spend that extra time with family the way they always talked about. So that they can be supported as they grieve with the parents who have just lost the unimaginable.

    An account has been established at Florence Savings bank. Gifts can be sent to the Sandy Hook First Grade Survivors Fund, PO Box 28, Whately, MA 01093, or may also be left at the any Florence Savings Bank branch. The fund will be administered by volunteers and all funds collected will go to families of Sandy Hook first grade students.

    This fund is not (yet sponsored by) a charitable organization, and funds are not tax deductable. Tax deductible gifts can be made to the United Way of Western Connecticut at


  162. Myrna Flynn said,

    December 20, 2012 at 10:28 am

    Contact: Myrna Flynn —
    WGBY to Air Special Programming in Light of Newtown Tragedy

    Social and political issues are explored in depth through local and national effort.
    Springfield, MA — December 20, 2012 — WGBY will preempt some of its regularly scheduled programming this weekend in order to broadcast special content in the wake of last Friday’s school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. On Friday, December 21, Gwen Ifill hosts After Newtown, a PBS prime-time special produced by WNET, with contributions from FRONTLINE, NOVA, PBS NewsHour and Washington Week, from 8-9pm. The show provides an overview of issues, both social and political, that have re-emerged in the past week since the tragedy occurred.

    On Saturday, viewers can learn additional information about those issues as they are more closely examined in What Next After Newtown: What Our Country and Communities Can Do. This three-hour special will include both national and local programming divided into the following six half-hour segments: The Mind of a Killer, Public Policy and Mental Illness, School Security, Talking to Children/Finding a Path to Healing, Violence in the Media and Accessibility of Weapons. What Next After Newtown airs from 3-6pm on WGBY.

    WGBY’s Connecting Point will re-broadcast three of this week’s segments within that time period: Watch to see host Carrie Saldo’s conversation with a psychologist about societal factors he believes cultivate this type of horrific behavior; her interview with Chicopee School Superintendent Richard Rege that covered student safety within the district; and Saldo’s talk with a local psychiatrist who suggested ways to talk with young children who may be afraid and reluctant to go to school.

    Viewers are encouraged to share their comments and ideas on WGBY’s Facebook page during and after each program. As part of its commitment to improving local communities through lifelong learning, WGBY plans to initiate a long-term effort, both on-air and off, to improve child safety in our region.

    About WGBY
    WGBY (, a community-supported public broadcasting organization, connects the people of Western New England to events, ideas and each other through national PBS programming and locally produced series and specials. With four digital television channels, video on demand, podcasting and streaming video, WGBY is one of the region’s most accessible community institutions, providing lifelong learning opportunities for all. WGBY is available over the air on digital channel 57-1 and on cable throughout western Massachusetts and northwestern Connecticut and can be seen in high definition in western Massachusetts at Comcast 857, Time Warner 1807, Charter 782 and over the air on channel 57.


  163. Esther Melnik said,

    December 14, 2012 at 9:05 am

    Sorry, some points I should have mentioned:

    The lost cat was found in Williamsburg near Old Goshen Rd. last night. We think he’s been out on his own for a little while but not too long. He is hanging out on our front porch now and he seems to love everyone and everything. We have a female cat that does not play well with others so he is outside in a shelter we made for him until we can set up something separate in the house. We would love to find his family so please ask around!

    If you have any questions please email me at


  164. Esther Melnik said,

    December 13, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    Found! Beautiful grey striped cat. He is extremely friendly. I don’t think he’s more than a year old, if that. If he sounds familiar please email me. Thanks.


  165. Liz Smith said,

    December 4, 2012 at 7:14 am

    NCCHP Museum Participating in “Valley Gives” Day

    The Noble & Cooley Center for Historic Preservation (NCCHP) museum is one of 268 nonprofit organizations in Western Mass to benefit from Valley Gives Day on 12.12.12
    Valley Gives Day is a one-of-a-kind 24 hour e-philanthropy event hosted by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts with the support of eight funding organization partners: Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts, Jewish Endowment Foundation, Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts, United Way of Hampden County, United Way of Hampshire County, United Way of Franklin County, Irene E. and George A. Davis Foundation and the Beveridge Family Foundation.

    The goal of the Valley Gives Day is to raise $1 million on December 12th between 12:00 am and 11:59 pm. $150,000 in unrestricted cash prizes and bonus matches will be given out to participating nonprofits thanks to the organizers and other sponsors.

    The goal of NCCHP on 12.12.12 is to raise $15,000 in donations from members and friends of the museum and to get enough new individual $12 donations to secure one of the top prizes for donor participation ($15,000, $10,000 and $5,000).

    The NCCHP museum at the Drum Shop in Granville opened in 2007 to preserve and present the rich history of manufacturing, agricultural pursuits and rural crafts in Granville and the surrounding hill towns. “Keeping The Drumbeat of History” alive is the mission of the museum. Teaching successive generations about how their ancestors lived, worked and spent their leisure time in the hill towns is vital to preserving the rich history of the area.

    NCCHP is looking to preserve and grow the museum with your support during the Valley Gives Day event. Please visit today to learn more about the museum and schedule a tax deductible donation. Encourage everyone you know via phone, e-mail, Facebook and Twitter to also make a minimum $12 gift to NCCHP. Then join us at the museum at 42 Water Street in Granville on 12.12.12 for a fun evening of watching NCCHP’s progress on the Valley Gives tote board. It promises to be a very interesting night at the museum!


  166. Gigi Kaeser said,

    November 25, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    WE HAVE FAITH: LGBT Clergy and People of Faith Speak Out is a traveling exhibit that can go to your house of worship, library or community anywhere in the world.
    PLEASE GO TO and watch the video and PLEASE POST this on your Face Book page.
    THIS IS A 30 day KICKSTARTER fundraising campaign which will make it possible to show this exhibit at little or no cost to any one who wants to fight bigotry and bullying in thier community.



  167. October 20, 2012 at 8:04 am

    10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival is seeking submissions for the 2013 festival which will be held February 14-24. The inaugural festival – named 10X10 On North – was held in downtown Pittsfield in February 2012 and was Pittsfield’s first-ever winter contemporary arts festival. Now in its second year, the festival is expanding in size and geography to include more programming in venues throughout the city’s newly designated Upstreet Cultural District and has been renamed the 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival.

    Last winter’s inaugural 10X10 festival creatively enlivened downtown Pittsfield for 11 days from February 16-26, 2012 with 44 performances featuring more than 120 new works including plays, songwriters, poets, visual art, film and dance and attracted more than 3,000 visitors. 10X10 2013 will feature signature programming such as the 10X10 New Play Festival at Barrington Stage Company, the Ten Spot art show at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, a short film festival at the Beacon Cinema, and more. The committee is also looking for new and out-of-the-box programming and partners.

    10X10 Upstreet has issued a call for submissions to encourage artists, performers and cultural organizations to propose programming for inclusion in the festival. All programming must occur within the Upstreet Cultural District during the festival dates and must relate to the festival’s theme of “ten.” The deadline for submission is Friday, November 16.

    For more information on submitting a proposal for consideration for the 2013 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival, visit or call 413-499-9348.

    About 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival
    The festival is a collaborative effort spearheaded by Barrington Stage Company and the City of Pittsfield and coordinated through a steering committee that includes the Beacon Cinema, Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF), Berkshire Museum, Ferrin Gallery, Lichtenstein Center for the Arts and the City of Pittsfield, Mission Bar + Tapas and y bar. 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival is generously sponsored by Berkshire Gas, the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the Berkshire Eagle. For more information call 413-499-9348 or visit×10


  168. October 18, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Help us reduce youth substance use. The Northampton Prevention Coalition is actively seeking parents and members of the business community for our steering committee. We meet on the first Friday of every month from 9:30-11:00 AM at Smith Vocational. We’ll work together to make Northampton a safer place for everyone.

    For more info, contact:
    Glenn Johnson
    Northampton Prevention Coalition
    Florence Community Center
    140 Pine St., Room 22
    Florence, MA 01062
    Phone: 413-587-1157


  169. Shelley Kirkwood said,

    October 13, 2012 at 8:47 am

    forgot to list my contact


  170. Shelley Kirkwood said,

    October 11, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    Looking for a new home to love! : Local  family seeks  3-4BR home! Are you considering selling yours?
    After months of MLS browsing, I am trying to reach out more directly to the community in our home search. We are looking in:Leverett, Florence, Montague, Northampton, Amherst, Pelham, Hadley, Sunderland and Deerfield. We are seeing a home with some character.
    We cook and would prefer an open, integrated kitchen and a floor plan where MB is on the Same floor as other bedrooms… Ideally a floor plan that is open or open-able. Willing to renovate or looking for quality renovations. thank you!


  171. October 2, 2012 at 11:19 am

    The Gateway Regional School District is partnering with Berkshire Children and Families to offer a free program for parents/guardians of 9-14 year olds. The curriculum, Guiding Good Choices, is a prevention program designed to teach parents how to reduce the risk of drug and alcohol abuse by their children. The five-session program was developed by Dr. David Hawkins and Dr. Richard Catalano, both of the University of Washington. It is based on a review of over thirty years of research into factors that increase problem behaviors in young people.
    Both parents and children are encouraged to attend each of the five 2 1⁄2 hour workshops, which include a shared meal each night. During four of the five sessions, while children participate in their own activities, parents learn skills that they will then practice at home. One of the sessions called “Avoiding Trouble,” is designed for parents and children together.
    Workshop topics include preventing drug use in the family, developing health beliefs and standards, helping children avoid trouble with drugs and alcohol, managing conflict, and strengthening family bonds through children’s participation in family meetings and activities. A handout with more information has gone home with students.
    The dates of these sessions will be determined as soon as parents rsvp and share the evenings that work best for them. If you would like to sign up or have any questions, please feel free to call Linda Dugas @ 685-1203, Wendy Long @ 685-1003, or Marylou Spaulding @ 584-5690 x102.


  172. September 26, 2012 at 7:36 am

    Berkshire County Rx Round Up
    Saturday, September 29, 2012
    10am – 2pm

    Do you have unused, unwanted or expired medications around your home? Help protect your family, community and the environment by safely disposing of them at the following locations:

    North Berkshire County:
    Adams- Adams Police Station (4 School St.)
    Lanesborough- Berkshire Mall Food Court
    North Adams-Spitzer Senior Center (116 Ashland St.)
    Williamstown- Transfer Station (667 Simonds Rd./Rt.7)

    Central Berkshire County:
    Dalton- Community Recreation Association (400 Main St.)
    Lee- Lee Ambulance (177 Main St.)
    Lenox-Lenox Town Hall (6 Walker Street)
    Pittsfield- CHP Neighborhood Health Center (510 North St.)

    South Berkshire County:
    Egremont- Police Station/Town Hall (171 Egremont Plain Rd.)
    Great Barrington- Police Station (465 Main Street)
    Sheffield- Sheffield Senior Center (25 Cook Rd.)
    Stockbridge- Police Station/Town Hall (50 Main St.)
    West Stockbridge -Police Station (21 State Line Rd.)


    Can’t get to the Sept. 29th Rx Round Up? You can drop off Rx meds any day at any time at police stations in these towns:
    Great Barrington, Pittsfield, North Adams and Williamstown.

    Source: South Berkshire Community Coalition


  173. September 24, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Through a generous grant from the Alice Saver Foundation, Williamstown, MA the Milne Public Library in Williamstown upgraded their computer lab. The grant paid for 6 new computers that replace PC’s that were almost 10 years old, plus new wide screen monitors. The new lab has faster speed and greater access to new applications and software. The patrons are all remarking on the incredible improvements to a highly used service.

    In addition the library has added computer training on the website The online service is called Atomic Training and provides access to online, on-demand video training tutorials on the most popular software. Users can improve job skills by learning specific software training tutorials, it helps users of all ages become more proficient on basic computer applications and it’s paced to use when time allows. Some of the training tutorials include: Twitter, Skype, iPad, Word, Excel, Photoshop and many more to help with new technology.

    The Library is highly dependent on fundraising and grants to provide the vital library that we have and to maintain the second highest circulation for a library in Berkshire County. You can anticipate that many users will enjoy sharing this up-to-date computer service to anyone who visits the Milne Library.

    The Milne Public Library is located on Route 2 across from the Williams Inn. The hours of the Library are 10:5:30, Wednesday 10-8 and Saturday 10-4.


  174. September 20, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Artsbucks to Stimulate Arts Purchases at October 5th Artswalk & Beyond

    Berkshire Money Management today announced an innovative new initiative to spur attendance and art purchases at downtown Pittsfield’s October First Fridays Artswalk exhibitions. Called Artsbucks, they will underwrite $100 towards purchases of original art over $200 during the month of October from Artswalk partners.

    Allen Harris, president of Berkshire Money Management, noted “We love taking an active role in supporting efforts that we sponsor. I believe the arts are great for business – and as any businessperson can tell you – a little incentive for the consumer can go a long way. But most of all, this is fun. I hope everyone will take their Artsbucks and maybe buy that one incredible piece they may not have otherwise. That’s what this is all about.”

    $100 Artsbucks will be available at Artswalk downtown business partners and will also be distributed at the September 3rd. Thursdays event. If someone makes a purchase of an original piece of art for over $200 from one of the Artswalk partners or exhibiting artists, the customer can send in the Artsbuck with a copy of the signed receipt and receive a $100 check from Berkshire Money Management. Only one purchase per person may be submitted. Full instructions on redeeming the Artsbucks are printed on the back.

    Mary McGinnis, the Chair of Artwalk, stated “We are incredibly grateful for Berkshire Money Management’s ongoing and very innovative support of First Fridays Artswalk and especially of the artists and galleries that share such beautiful creations with us each month. I expect Artsbucks will be drawing a lot of new faces to Artswalk next month too!”

    The $100 Artsbuck features an image of the famous portrait of Mona Lisa in the center, in place of the traditional Benjamin Franklin portrait. A world renowned art icon over 500 years old, the Mona Lisa by Leonardo da Vinci is also “the best known, the most visited, the most written about, the most sung about, the most parodied work of art in the world,” according to the Independent. The surrealist artist Marcel Duchamp famously put a moustache and goatee on a depiction of Mona Lisa and Nat King Cole sang her praises. A larger than life Artsbuck and Mona Lisa herself will be out at 3rd.Thursdays handing out Artsbucks (and posing for photos.)

    First Fridays Artwalk is a monthly series of free visual art exhibitions, openings and events throughout downtown Pittsfield held on the first Friday of the month all year round. Over thirty galleries, restaurants and shops are partners. Berkshire Money Management is a lead sponsor of First Fridays Artswalk, along with Gallery 25, the Massachusetts Cultural Council/Cultural Pittsfield, and Berkshire Art Association. Other sponsors include Berkshire Bank Foundation, Berkshire Heath Systems, Berkshire Theatre Group, and Downtown Pittsfield, Inc.

    Downtown Artswalk partners include Empty Set Projects, Miller Supply, Berkshire Museum, Crowne Plaza, Brix Wine Bar, Marketplace Café, Downtown Pittsfield, Inc., the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Pateez Boutique, Brenda & Co, Bagels Too, Berkshire Carousel Gallery, Steven Valenti Clothing for Men, Berkshire Community College Intermodal Gallery, Paul Rich & Sons, Spice Dragon, Alchemy Initiative, Art.On.No, Treehouse, Gallery 25, Mad Macs, BINGO!, Wild Sage, Aerus Electrolux, Y Bar, Ferrin Gallery, Circa, the Lantern, West Side Clock Shop and the Berkshire Medical Center.

    Berkshire Money Management is a full service money management firm with a professional investment team that monitors and manages clients’ full investment portfolios. Located in a recently renovated property at 392 Merrill Road in Pittsfield, Berkshire Money Management is committed to the financial success and prosperity of its clients. Berkshire Money Management is also dedicated to supporting the prosperity of the Berkshires, the firm’s chosen location.

    For more information on downtown Pittsfield’s First Fridays Artwalk, visit or email For more information on Berkshire Money Management, visit or call 888.232.6072.


  175. Charles Dudek said,

    September 18, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    Williamsburg Cultural Council Taking Applications for 2013 Grants

    The Williamsburg Cultural Council is accepting applications for 2013 Local Cultural Council grants. Grant applications must be postmarked no later than October 15, 2012.

    The Williamsburg Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

    The Williamsburg Cultural Council has been allocated a total of $3,870 from the Massachusetts Cultural Council for grants to individuals or organizations for cultural projects that benefit the community. Projects may be in the arts, humanities, or interpretive sciences. In making grant decisions, the council gives priority to applicants from Williamsburg and projects that relate to the town’s character or history, and bring residents together in community activities. Applicants must secure a venue or a local organization as sponsor.

    Application forms and instructions are posted on bulletin boards around town, including at Town Hall, the Williamsburg and Haydenville Post Offices, Meekins Library, Florence Savings Bank, Berkshire Bank, Bread Euphoria, and the Williamsburg Pharmacy & Hardware. Applications are also available online at

    For more information about the Williamsburg Cultural Council or to obtain a grant application, visit the council’s web site at or write to


  176. September 5, 2012 at 3:56 pm

    Donna E. Moyer, Interim Superintendent writes:

    As you already know, we are closed at the [Hadley Elementary School] school tomorrow. This morning the staff arrived at school and found the water running very dirty and some electrical problems in the building. Some of the outlets were not working and many smoke detectors were flashing and needing to be reset. Jeff Udall and his staff worked quickly to contact an electrician, the alarm system company and to have a “waterless day.” Late this afternoon the alarm system technician arrived and reset the detectors but also discovered that the fire alarm system in parts of the building was out. We believe we were possibly hit by lightning causing the electrical problems. As soon as we had knowledge of the electrical issues, we contacted the Fire Department and the Chief placed the building under watch – meaning a firefighter is in the building at all times it is occupied. We insisted upon the water being tested before children or staff drink it again.

    We will get the results of the water testing during the day tomorrow and there is a meeting of all the pertinent departments in town to assess how to proceed. Please watch the PTO and district websites for updates. Please also feel free to contact me via email at or by phone at 1-413-586-0895.

    We initially made the decision to close the elementary school on Thursday erring on the side of utmost caution for the students entrusted to us. We will continue to be vigilant.


  177. West Cummington Community Church said,

    September 5, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    The West Cummington Church is a small and lively hilltown congregation looking for child care workers to care for children ages birth to 5 on Sundays from 9:15 am to 11:15 am. Experience is necessary and references are required, as is a CORI check. Applicants must be 18 or over.

    Send resume and cover letter to West Cummington Church, Box 148 Cummington, MA, 01026. Attention: Tom


  178. Cindy Tarail said,

    August 31, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    The 2012 Montague Soapbox Derby will be held on Sunday, September 16, 2012, at 12:00 high noon, RAIN OR SHINE on the 
Unity Park hill, 1st Street, Turners Falls, MA. Accepting racer applications for $25.Three age brackets:
 8-12 yrs old; 13-19 yrs old; 20+ yrs old. Home made carts, minimum three wheels, one rider. No motors or any form of propulsion. This event is a fundraiser for Montague Community Cable, Inc./MCTV Channel 17 in Montague, MA. Gold Sponsors: Bear Country Radio 95.3 FM, Greenfield Savings Bank, Hillside Plastics, Judd Wire, Kostanski Funeral Home, Montague WebWorks, Northeast Solar Design, and Silverscreen Design. Rules, forms and more information at Contact: Race Director: Mik Muller (413) 320-5336 or Coordinator Cindy Tarail at MCTV, 863-9200.


  179. August 27, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    September waste oil paint and used motor oil waste collections set:

    On Saturdays, September 8th and September 29th, 2012 the South Berkshire Household Hazardous Waste Collaborative will hold two paint and oil collections for the 16 participating towns. The Center for EcoTechnology (CET) will coordinate these collections.

    The towns in the South Berkshire Household Hazardous Waste Collaborative sponsor this program. The participating towns are Alford, Becket, Egremont, Great Barrington, Lee, Lenox, Monterey, Mount Washington, New Marlborough, Otis, Richmond, Sandisfield, Sheffield, Stockbridge, Tyringham and West Stockbridge.

    Saturday, September 8th, 9 AM – 11:00 AM | Lenox Highway Dept.
    275 Main Street, Lenox

    Saturday, September 29th, 9 AM – 11:30 AM | Great Barrington Recycling Center (601 Stockbridge Road, Across from Monument Mountain High School)

    Acceptable materials are oil-based paint, stains, paint thinners, spray paint and turpentine, as well as waste motor oil.

    Latex paint will not be accepted at this event. Empty cans can be recycled with scrap metal. Dried-up cans of latex paint can be disposed with the regular trash. Empty cans of oil-based paint, stains and solvents can be disposed with the regular trash as well. Usable paint can be given away through or some non-profits.

    To register online or for information about what can be brought to these collections, visit or email Or call CET at 888-577-8448 ext. 10 or 30. Residents from communities that are not participating should call their City or Town Hall for information about hazardous household product collections.


  180. August 22, 2012 at 12:32 pm

    Hilltown Families Social Media Intern/Volunteer

    Hilltown Families is an online grassroots communication network serving thousands of families in the four counties of Western MA.

    Through a dynamic web site/blog, social networking, listserv, podcast, online bulletin boards, and collaborations with civic and nonprofit groups, Hilltown Families connects people and organizations in the widespread communities of Western MA by helping area residents share ideas, organize activities, support their children’s education and increase participation in community life.

    Hilltown Families aim is to reflect the positive work and educational efforts activists, families, teachers, artists and civic leaders work towards and accomplish in the region, and how that affects, supports and empowers families/community.

    Hilltown Families is currently hiring a social media intern/volunteer to work 5 to 7 hours per week starting September 2012. The intern/volunteer will help increase our website’s effectiveness and capacity. The intern/volunteer will gain experience in maintaining and creating content for a highly trafficked website (nearly a quarter of a million unique visitors in 2011 alone) that serves thousands of Western Massachusetts families. Intern/volunteer will receive supervision and support but should also be comfortable working independently and must have own computer.

    The qualified candidate will display:

    – A working knowledge of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Gmail and Google Docs. Knowledge of WordPress and html a plus.
    – An interest in community based education and community development.
    – An eye for detail and a willingness to tackle mundane tasks
    – Excellent writing and grammar skills
    – Summarize news and events

    Essential Duties:

    – Craft and schedule posts for Hilltown Families social media platforms
    – Create, design and proof blog posts in partnership with Hilltown Families Staff
    – Assist with general website administration and maintenance tasks
    – Maintain accurate and updated list of resources
    Applicants should email a cover letter explaining their interest in the internship/volunteer position, a resume detailing relevant experience/abilities, and hours of availability. Applications may be emailed to


  181. Jean Potter said,

    August 15, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    I am a Birth and Postpartum Doula working for free/very reduced rates while completing certification.

    For more information, please contact Jean Potter at (312)952-2691 or



  182. August 2, 2012 at 7:41 pm

    Made in the Berkshires Casting Call

    Berkshire Theatre Group’s festival of new works, Made in the Berkshires is seeking actors for the 2012 festival.

    Made in the Berkshires will run Columbus Day weekend, October 5, 6 and 7, 2012 at the Colonial Theatre, Pittsfield and the Unicorn Theatre, Stockbridge.

    Made in the Berkshires is casting men and women aged 14 to 60 and one young girl able to play 7 years of age and one young boy able to play 13 years of age for roles in full length and short plays and for readings of short stories and poetry.

    Auditions will occur at the Unicorn Theatre at 6 East St. in Stockbridge on Aug 12 and 13 from 12pm to 4pm. Please bring a headshot and resume and have a 2 minute monologue prepared and a song if applicable. No appointments necessary.

    For more information, please visit our website at


  183. Katie said,

    July 16, 2012 at 6:51 pm

    Seeking Single Mothers By Choice! Two women, one a single mother, one a soon-to-be single mother, both of whom deliberately chose motherhood in spite of being single, are looking to connect with others in the area. If you’re considering becoming a parent on your own, are in the process of making the parenthood dream a reality, or are already a single parent by choice (or at least were when you started!), we’d love to be in touch. We’re hoping to host an informal get-together towards the end of the summer/early fall. If you’d also like to connect, please email Katie at (Don’t worry, this really is a real email address!)


  184. July 3, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    Great family fun can be had by spending the night camping in the antique wooden caboose at Chester Railway Museum.

    It sleeps four adults on the wooden bunks. Air mattresses are needed; it’s camping, not a motel. Many more can fit if on the floor. Scout troops are welcome. Includes spacious lawn suitable for a number of ancillary tents, a grill, and firewood. Electricity is available. Showers may be used at Walker Island Campground.

    Spend the day hiking, fishing and swimming along the nearby Keystone Arch Trail, or visit the Becket Land Trust abandoned quarry, both only two miles away. Chester Theatre Co. and a couple eateries are within walking distance. Visit and for more information. Or call 413.354.7878


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