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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

Lee Bank Fourth Quarter Community Funding
02:30PM / Wednesday, January 05, 2022
LEE, Mass. — Lee Bank Foundation has awarded $68,560 to twelve Berkshire area organizations in its fourth-round of 2021 community grant awards.    Recipients were awarded grants ranging from $1,000 to $20,000 to support their local programming. Included in the awards are a series of Arts Access Grants for arts and culture organizations to expand access to programming for underserved audiences. The following organizations received funding from Lee Bank Foundation: 18 Degrees Barrington Stage Company Berkshire Busk! Berkshire Community Action Council Berkshire Immigrant Center IS183 Art School Latinas413 Literacy Network of South Berkshire Mass MoCA NAACP

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Freezing Rain and Sleet Expected Wednesday
10:47AM / Wednesday, January 05, 2022
The U.S. National Weather Service has issued a special weather statement for portions of the mid-Hudson Valley, central and northern Taconics, northern Berkshires, and southern Vermont prior to noontime.   Some light glazes of ice are possible and this may cause some slippery spots on untreated surfaces. Sleet accumulations will be very light.    MassDOT issued a notice that the freezing rain will impact travel:   Members of the public are encouraged to travel only if necessary and delay trips if possible until at least noon today.  MassDOT crews have been chemically treating and salting roadways but rain, freezing rain and light snow in some regions has impacted

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MFBF Partners With A&B Insurance
08:22AM / Wednesday, January 05, 2022
MARLBOROUGH, Mass. The Massachusetts Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) announced it has entered into an agreement with A&B insurance, an independent insurance agency based in Westford.    "MFBF is much more than the insurance or discounts we offer," said MFBF President Warren Shaw. "However, the single most important reason we've entered into this new agreement is that we believe it will provide our members with more and better options to help ensure the security of their family, home and business."   Immediately, A&B Insurance will be offering MFBF members discounts on policies with CountryWay, which is affiliated with Virginia Farm Bureau

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Governor Says Schools Will Remain Open
Staff Reports,
02:19PM / Monday, January 03, 2022
SALEM, Mass. — Gov. Charlie Baker gave no indication that the schools will go remote this year despite the rising cases of COVID-19.   Speaking at Saltonstall School early Monday morning, the governor noted that his administration has "aggressively partnered" with schools across the state to ensure they could safely open in the new year.    "We said for quite awhile from the beginning of the school year, and in fact al the way back to last spring, that it was critically important for kids to be back in school for a number of reasons," he said during the livestream event, pointing to the potential affects of remote learning on social development,

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RMV Extending Use of State-Owned Vehicles for Road Testing into 2022
10:36AM / Monday, January 03, 2022
BOSTON — The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) announced the agency will continue with the use of Commonwealth-owned vehicles for Class D road testing services through April 30, 2022 and has delayed the return to the use of private passenger vehicles for road tests.   Due to the pandemic and health and safety protocols, since June of 2020, the RMV has deployed a fleet of Commonwealth-owned vehicles for road tests which are cleaned and sanitized on a regular basis. Plans to return to private vehicles have been delayed and existing protocols will remain in place: All occupants of a vehicle used in a road test, including the applicant, sponsor and examiner will

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Bidwell House Property Preserved With Conservation Restriction
04:01AM / Monday, January 03, 2022
MONTEREY, Mass. — The Bidwell House Museum announced the preservation of about 180 acres of its property.     Berkshire Natural Resources Council and the Monterey Preservation Land Trust (MPLT) will co-hold the Conservation Restriction. The CR was signed and made official on Dec. 15, 2021.    "The Museum is deeply indebted to Lew and Joyce Scheffey, whose Turkeybush Foundation provided $300,000 for the preservation; and to BNRC and MPLT, whose resources and assistance helped to make this happen," Museum Director Heather Kowalski said. "The funds received as part of the new conservation restriction will help provide financial security to the

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@theMarket: Markets Up on Thin Holiday Trading
By Bill Schmick,
03:15PM / Friday, December 31, 2021
The Santa Rally continued this week with the S&P 500 Index hitting a new record high. Most stocks that gained did so on little volume. Don't read too much into this week's gains, however.   There is an old, rarely used term called "painting the tape." It is a mild form of market manipulation where market traders buy and sell securities among themselves to create an appearance of substantial trading activity. The goal is to fool investors into buying into stocks, sectors, or the market thereby driving prices higher.   These kinds of tactics often result in an unsustainable spike higher in the averages, followed by a period of consolidation, or decline. The

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Jacob's Pillow Announces Pillow Lab Recipients
01:21PM / Friday, December 31, 2021
BECKET, Mass. — Jacob's Pillow announced eight artist residencies this winter and spring at the Pillow Lab, its year-round incubator of new work.    The annual season of customizable residencies supports U.S.-based and international dance artists during development, research, and technical stages of choreography-driven projects. The recipients for Winter/Spring 2022 include Deborah Goffe, Kayla Hamilton, Ladies of Hip-Hop, Gesel Mason, Taylor Stanley, Ananya Chatterjea, Emma Cianchi, and Irene Rodríguez.    "Our Associate Curators, Melanie George and Ali Rosa-Salas, and I are excited to announce the artists developing new work at the Pillow Lab. As

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CDCSB Small Business Assistance Program Presents Jane Iredale
11:45AM / Friday, December 31, 2021
GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — The Community Development Corporation of South Berkshire (CDCSB) will present a talk by cosmetics entrepreneur and founder, Jane Iredale as part of its Small Business Assistance Program and in concert with the Berkshire Entrepreneurs Forum.    "We are thrilled that Jane Iredale will be sharing her story," CDCSB Executive Director Allison Marchese said. "Her success is an inspiration to entrepreneurs and business owners everywhere. We are delighted to present this as part of our Small Business Assistance Program which offers small businesses free, one-on-one, professional consultations."    The virtual talk, "From

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First Day Hike on the Mount Greylock Reservation
08:55AM / Friday, December 31, 2021
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — The Department of Conservation and recreation will host a First Day Hike on the Bradley Farm Trail, part of the Mount Greylock State Reservation.    "The Baker-Polito Administration is thrilled to continue the tradition of offering First Day hikes at state parks throughout the Commonwealth again this year," said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. "There is nothing more invigorating than hiking through one of our beautiful parks with family and friends, and we're pleased to offer the opportunity kick off the New Year by getting outside and exploring the wonderful natural resources we have here in

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Berkshire High School Athletics 2021: A Year In Review
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
04:52PM / Thursday, December 30, 2021
"Normal" may still be a long way off.   But some of the usual suspects were back in their normal positions, at the top of the heap, during 2021's sports seasons.   The state's high school athletics governing body went 14 months without awarding a state championship. And once it did, a Berkshire County dynasty claimed another one.   The trend continued in the fall when one perennial power defended its state title and another earned a return trip to the biggest sports venue in New England.   Here is a look back at some of the athletes and teams making headlines in 2021.   Taconic baseball Coach Kevin Stannard's program earned its fourth straight

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The Retired Investor: Climate Change Is Costing Billions
By Bill Schmick,
04:04PM / Thursday, December 30, 2021
In 2021, worldwide, the costs of the ten worst disasters caused by climate change totaled more than $170 billion. It was the fourth time in the last five years that we have suffered that level of damages. Scientists expect next year to be even worse.   Insurance companies, like Zurich-based Swiss Re, bear the brunt of the costs of extreme weather. During the last decade, losses have been rising 5-6 percent per year, according to Swiss Re's recent analysis. They expect at least one $10 billion catastrophe, such as severe flooding, a winter storm, or a massive wildfire will be part of the new normal in weather changes.      What is worse, more than ever before, extreme

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