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Berkshires Beat: Kids Place Hosts Annual Jimmy Bernardo Memorial Ride
02:13PM / Monday, July 09, 2018
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The Bernardo family is seen at the 2016 memorial run.

Remembering Jimmy

The 23rd annual Jimmy's Ride to benefit victims of child abuse will be held on Saturday, July 28. This annual event is held in memory of Pittsfield native Jimmy Bernardo. Jimmy was born August 13, 1978, and was abducted from a local movie theater on October 20, 1990. A month later, his body was found in Ithaca, N.Y. Three and a half years later, the Bernardo family was able to find peace after the Pittsfield Police captured a suspect when he tried to abduct another young girl in Pittsfield. The suspect subsequently pled guilty to murdering Jimmy and is serving life in prison.

Jimmy's Ride will start at Berkshire County Kids Place once again this year. Register in advance online or the day of the event registration will begin at 9 a.m. at the lot across from Berkshire County Kids Place, located at 63 Wendell Ave. The ride will leave Kids Place at 11 a.m. and end at Bousquet Ski Area for the post ride event from noon until 6 p.m. with food, music, drink and fun. It is open to the public for a cover charge of $5 per person/$20 for family (up to two adults and four kids). This is a family-friendly event and kids are welcome.

Musical Entertainment will be provided by four local favorites: Red Handed at 12:15 followed by Hot Shot Hillbillies, "2 Broke Beths" Acoustic Duo and Shyne closes out the day at 4:45 p.m. A portion of the proceeds from the food and drink sold will benefit the event.

Berkshire County Kids Place is also holding its annual raffle, with four great prizes. First place is $1,000 cash, second place is a high definition TV from Schilling TV, third place is $500 in services from Indulgence Salon and fourth is a $300 gift certificate to Central Radio. Tickets are $5 each, three for $10 or 10 for $20 and are available for purchase at Berkshire County Kids Place located on 63 Wendell Ave. in Pittsfield, or can be purchased the day of the event while supplies last. The drawing for the raffle will be at the event at 4:30 p.m. before Shyne takes the stage.


Tag sale donations

Assess your attic. Cull your cupboards. Besiege your basement. Grub out your garage.  Your donations can help support the Stephentown Historical Society and its programs. Good clean, usable items will be accepted for the July 28 Community Tag Sale to be held at Gardner's Field at 15879 Route 22 in Stephentown, N.Y. Please do not donate computers, computer equipment, televisions, plastic Christmas decorations, records or VHS tapes since they usually do not sell and the society must then pay to dispose of them properly.

Small appliances should be in working order; large appliances and clothing may not be donated. Those with items to donate should take them to the Heritage Center on Garfield Road on Friday, July 27, between 1 and 4 p.m. or to Gardner's after 8 a.m. on the day of the sale. Call 518-733-5170 to arrange for drop off and for any other questions.  Please do not leave donations if no one is at the Center.

Selling spaces will also be available for individuals or organizations for $20, so gather your saleable items. Tables, chairs, shade, or equipment are not provided. Vendors should arrive no earlier than 8 a.m. on the day of the sale.


Playing at the playgrounds

The City of Pittsfield Department of Community Development Recreation Program's Summer Parks Playground Program will be held at three city parks for the next six weeks this summer. The free playground program offers a wide variety of recreation activities to Pittsfield children ages 6 to 13. Locations include Clapp Park, The Common and Springside Park at Springside Avenue, the newest location this year. Normal hours will be 9 a.m. through 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The program will continue through Aug. 17.

The program is staffed by playground leaders who will create a safe, supervised and fun-filled environment for activities including sports, games, arts and crafts, and nature activities. Moreover, the program fosters self-esteem, friendships and provides youth with positive and caring role models. Please note, the program is designed to provide "drop-in" activities for children and is not a substitute for day camp or childcare.


Youth fair

Fair books are now available for the Berkshire Youth Fair, a fair run by 4-H Youth for all youths. Any youth between the ages of 5 and 18 can enter the fair; all entry forms are in the fair books. Youths can print the fair books off the web at or by scanning the QR code accompanying this article, and some hard copies of the book will be automatically put in Tractor Supply stores, libraries and craft stores.

What can a youth enter in the fair? Arts, crafts, photography, vegetables, sewing, baking, woodworking, poultry, rabbits, sheep, cows, pigs, goats, horses and more.  All entries must be created, made, grown or raised by the entrant (it doesn't matter if they made it for another program, as long as they made it).

The Berkshire County Youth Fair will take place on Saturday, Aug. 18, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the 4-H Fairgrounds on Utility Drive (off Holmes Road), Pittsfield. There is no entry fee and no parking fee for this fair.  4-H Youth and volunteers work year round to keep this fair free to the public so that any youth may participate and every family can enjoy a day out together. The contest for the cover art for the fair book was won by Faith Motta, 13, of North Adams.


Great gala

Left: Michael Brady, DDS, the 2018 Vision Award Honoree for Health Care Leadership. Right  SVHC Board of Trustees Chair Tommy Harmon (right) presents the 2018 Vision Award for Distinguished Community Service to Susan Hunter for the Hunter Family.

Southwestern Vermont Health Care hosted a sold-out crowd of more than 420 people at Centennial Gala on June 9 at the Hubbell Homestead in Bennington. The date was chosen to correspond with the eve of the hospital's 100th birthday. The 2018 Vision Awards, which honor recipients for their efforts to advance the health system's vision of healthier communities, were presented by Tommy Harmon, chair of the SVHC Board of Trustees. Michael Brady, DDS, received the 2018 Health Care Leadership Award, and Susan Hunter accepted the 2018 Distinguished Community Service Award on behalf of the Hunter Family.

In addition to the awards, dinner, and dancing, the event included special Centennial observances, including a birthday cake and "Happy Birthday." The event raised more than $150,000 in support of health care in the region. The SVHC Foundation’s next Centennial event is the Jingle Bell, which will be held on the evening of Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Equinox Resort in Manchester Village, Vt. For information about attending or sponsoring, call the SVHC Foundation at 802-447-5017.


Leadership camps

Two leadership camps, titled "Mountaineer C.L.I.M.B. Summit," will be offered at Southern Vermont College this summer. On Monday, July 16, the Summit will be for students entering grades six to eight. On Tuesday, July 17, the summit will be for students entering grades nine to 12. Each summit will meet from 8:45 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. at Hunter Hall on campus.

"C.L.I.M.B." stands for Character, Leadership, Integrity, Mentorship, and Balance. These five pillars are the foundation of the summits and are identified as factors that students will need to be successful leaders now and in their futures. Students who attend these summits will gain important information as it relates to their age group and help provide skillsets for success in the future. They will learn that all types of leadership are important and how to balance when it is best to be an outgoing leader and when it is best to be a behind-the-scenes leader.

Students will learn how to be responsible citizens and what that means for them where they are now and as they get older. They will also learn what their leadership style is and how to best interact with other leaders and their peers to build strong teams. Through fun team-builders, participants will increase their potential to be leaders on their sports teams, in their clubs, and other extracurricular activities. Students will learn from experienced faculty and staff of the SVC community who teach, guide, and advise college students. Students will gain skills in time management, effective communication, conflict management, perseverance, self-awareness, and empathy. Highlights will include team building, core values, and goal setting.

The cost of $75 to attend includes lunch, program sessions, and materials. For more information and to register, send an e-mail with your name and contact information and which summit you are interested in registering for.

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