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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

Whiplash Weather in Store for the Berkshires
01:32PM / Friday, December 06, 2019
Mother Nature is making sure there's a snowy background for Friday night's tree lightings in North Adams and Pittsfield. The National Weather Service is predicting a few inches and up to 5 inches in the higher elevations, with steady snowfall until 10 p.m.    Motorists should beware of slippery roads and low visibility, especially Friday night.   A number of school districts have canceled after-school programs for Friday: Hoosac Valley Regional; Berkshire Arts & Technology Public Charter; Mount Greylock Regional School District; Drury High; and Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union (early dismissal, too).   But wait, this is the Berkshires so you know the

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The Independent Investor: Truth About NATO & Defense Spending
By Bill Schmick,
04:19PM / Thursday, December 05, 2019
While it would appear that President Donald Trump left the London NATO Summit this week empty-handed, the truth is he has already achieved what several presidents before him could not. Unfortunately, it is a shallow victory at best.   Just a week ago, in preparation for President Trump's visit, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization announced a change in the funding of its budget. It agreed to reduce the United States' contribution to the alliance (now 22 percent) and redistribute the costs to other members. As a result, the U.S. and Germany will now pay the same amount. Each will contribute 16 percent of NATO's central budget.   The problem is that NATO's central

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MCLA Gallery 51 Annual Holiday Art Show Opens Thursday
10:31AM / Thursday, December 05, 2019
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts' Gallery 51 opens its Made by Hand Holiday Art Show will on Thursday, Dec. 5, just in time for the holiday season.    All art will be priced below $100 and will be available for purchase that evening through Dec. 28.   The public is invited to attend the show's official opening from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday at Gallery 51 on Main Street. There will gifts choices from more than 40 local makers and artisans.   The holiday art show celebrates the artwork of local and regional artists and includes sculpture, ceramics, watercolors, jewelry, paintings, cards, collages, fiber, book arts, photography, and

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Sommer Center for Music & Art to Open Former Adams Church
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
03:59AM / Thursday, December 05, 2019

Members of the Adams-Anthony Center and local officials at the former St. Mark's Church for the announcement of the academy. ADAMS, Mass. — The Olga C. Sommer Center for Music & Art will open in the former St. Mark's Episcopal Church and host the Berkshires Academy for Advanced Musical Studies.   A group of New York-based musicians look to breath new life into the former church on Commercial Street. On Wednesday, residents and town leaders were asked to imagine what the Berkshires Academy for Advanced Musical Studies (BAAMS) could bring to Adams and the greater region.   "I like to say that every one of us have little candles in our heads that

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Mass MoCA Launches Winter Season With Free Admission
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:05AM / Thursday, December 05, 2019

Mass MoCA spokeswoman Jodi Joseph welcomes the gathering of museum employees and volunteers to the winter season update. NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art is offering an early Christmas present to Berkshire County residents: Free admission to the galleries from Dec. 6 through Dec. 22.    "We do this once a year. We do it as a pop up," said Jodi Joseph, director of communications. "We delight in throwing open the doors to bring our friends and neighbors from all over the county here."    Art, she said, edifies and enriches us in these uncertain times. "It comforts, it nourishes, teaches, it inspires,

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Berkshire Family YMCA Appoints New CEO
02:06PM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Family YMCA's board of directors has appointed Jessica Rumlow as CEO and executive director for the organization.

Rumlow was appointed interim CEO and executive director in May after Randy Kinnas, the nonprofit's CEO for the last 19 years, moved on as director of Member Advancement for the Alliance of Massachusetts YMCAs.

"We're thrilled to work with Jess as the Y's new leader. Transition in leadership can pose several challenges; however, this has been seamless given her vast Y experience and understanding of the needs of the Berkshire County community," said Peter Moore, board president of the Berkshire Family YMCA.

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Northern Berkshire United Way, Williamstown Community Chest Holding Diaper Drive
12:52PM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Northern Berkshire United Way and Williamstown Community Chest are holding a collaborative Diaper Drive.

The drive will kick off on Giving Tuesday, Dec. 3, and end on Tuesday, Dec. 17. All of the diapers and wipes collected will go to the Berkshire Community Diaper Project, which will distribute the diapers to agencies in Northern Berkshire.

BCDP raises funds and collects diaper donations to provide these essential items for parents/guardians and caregivers who struggle to afford them for their children. In Berkshire Country, 2,000 children qualify for one of three WIC Programs located in Berkshire County.

"Food and financial insecurity usually goes along with diaper need. Both

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PRP: New Treatment for Osteoarthritis
By Dr. Ivette Guttmann,
11:45AM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

For years, treatment options for osteoarthritis (OA) were rather limited: exercise, anti-inflammatory drugs, cortisone injections, physical therapy and, in extreme cases, joint replacement. But a new treatment option is showing great promise and offering much-needed relief to some sufferers.

Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP for short, has been found effective for reducing pain and increasing function in joints affected by osteoarthritis. Best of all, it uses your body's own resources and healing powers to create change.

In short, PRP therapy involves taking some of a patient's blood and running it through a high-tech centrifuge to extract platelets and plasma. The resulting mixture

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Invest in Your Family and Community
11:16AM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Why do you invest? For many people, here's the answer: "I invest because I want to enjoy a comfortable retirement." And that's certainly a great reason, because all of us should regularly put money away for when we're retired. But you can also benefit by investing in your family and your community.

Let's start with your family members, particularly the younger ones. How can you invest in their future? One of the best ways is to help send them to college. A college degree is still a pretty good investment: The average lifetime earnings of a college graduate are nearly $1 million higher than those of someone with a high school degree, according to a study by the

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Holiday Events and Tree Lightings 2019
11:15AM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

'Tis the season to be merry and bright. Planning a holiday event? Let us know at iBerkshires.com. (Visit our Holiday Bazaars and Craft Fairs list for holiday craft fairs.( And see below for a guide to Christmas tree lightings in towns across the Berkshires.

 

Holiday Events Thursday, Dec. 5

North Adams: Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts’ Gallery 51 will host an opening reception for its “Made By Hand Holiday Art Show,” which celebrates the artwork of local and regional artists and includes sculpture, ceramics, watercolors, jewelry, paintings, cards, collages, fiber, book arts, photography, and printmaking, from 5 to 7 p.m. The show will run at

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Village Closet Close to Finding New Home for Children's Clothing and Gear
11:11AM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

CUMMINGTON, Mass. — When the Village Closet, a Cummington-based donation center for infant and children's clothing and gear, lost its space in September, hundreds of families in western Massachusetts were left without access to free kids clothing and diapers that were desperately needed.

"Many families have come to rely on the Village Closet as a way to make ends meet," said Lisa Goding, program director at It Take a Village, the nonprofit organization which manages the Village Closet. In 2019 alone, the Village Closet distributed more than $130,000 worth of free baby clothing, diapers and gear to 1,500 families from 84 different towns throughout western

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Harvest Festivals and Craft Fairs 2019
10:20AM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Fall has arrived, bringing with it many craft fairs and harvest festivals around the Berkshires. This list will be updated as we get more information. Have an event to add? Email us at info@iberkshires.com.

 

Saturday, Dec. 7

Dalton: Roots Rising’s Handmade Holiday Festival, a Berkshire winter tradition and curated holiday marketplace, will be held at The Stationery Factory at 63 Flansburg Ave. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with over 60 artisans, farmers, and food producers. All proceeds from the $2 entrance fee will support Roots Rising's mission to empower youth and build community through food and farming. From pottery and jewelry to gourmet food items and body care products,

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