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News and events in Pittsfield, Mass.

Drive Walk Bike by Art Show Friday In Pittsfield
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
04:01AM / Friday, July 10, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Pittsfield has been hosting a First Fridays Artswalk for nearly a decade. But the event designed to bring people downtown to mingle has been put on hold for during the novel coronavirus panedemic.    Instead, a citywide Drive Walk Bike by Art Show is scheduled for this Friday.    Organizer and artist Jesse Tobin McCauley believes the pandemic should not stand in the way of art or people's ability to experience art.   "These have been confining, hard, scary times and art can help you forget and make you smile and just bring happiness to all," she said.   With many of the summer activities canceled because of the pandemic,

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Cultural Pittsfield This Week: July 10-16
10:10PM / Thursday, July 09, 2020

 

Welcome to Cultural Pittsfield's weekly guide featuring in-person and virtual classes and events, information, and more. If you are a Pittsfield business and would like your event listed, please email us at cultural@pittsfieldch.com. Thank you and be well! TONIGHT - Thursday, July 9 at 7 p.m.: Berkshire OLLI at BCC presents An Online Conversation with Jim Acosta. The Chief White House Correspondent for CNN will discuss "The Enemy of the People: One Year, One Impeachment, and One Pandemic Later," co-sponsored by Berkshire Gas

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Inauguration 2016
by Soapbox 02:00PM / Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Kids 4 Harmony Provided The Music At The Inauguration Reception
by Soapbox 08:38PM / Monday, January 06, 2014

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow
by Soapbox 04:10PM / Tuesday, December 10, 2013

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Senate Candidate Kennedy Makes Stops in the Berkshires
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
07:47PM / Thursday, July 09, 2020

Congressman Joe Kennedy III asks a question of pastry chef Cynthia Walton as Salvatore Perry looks on.   NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — U.S. Senate candidate Joseph Kennedy used a campaign stop in North Berkshire on Thursday to say that the nation's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic cannot ignore the creative economy that is a major economic driver in the region.   "We want to have arts and cultural institutions," the 4th Mass congressman said during a tour of the Greylock Works mill revival on State Road (Route 2). "Not only are they critically important to our economy, they're literally integral to our quality of life.   "And the

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The Retired Investor: Next Bailout Should Address Job Creation
By Bill Schmick,
04:06PM / Thursday, July 09, 2020
As the COVID-19 virus rages across the nation, Americans are hoping for more assistance from the government on a variety of fronts. So far this month, their hopes have been met with a resounding silence from the White House, although members of Congress are trying to come up with answers that both parties can agree upon. I have a couple of suggestions.    The first round of fiscal and monetary stimulus did a good job in addressing the huge spike in unemployment the country has suffered. While the CARES Act at $2.2 trillion provided $500 billion to distressed industries, almost $350 billion in loans to small businesses and $4100 billion to hospitals, it was the $200 billion in

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Pittsfield CPA Committee Review Projects
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
11:19AM / Thursday, July 09, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Pittsfield Community Preservation Committee reviewed a series of applications that it may recommend for funding in July.   Late last month, the committee heard from five applicants looking to utilize Community Preservation Act funds for various projects.   "It makes sense to have a meeting at some point in July to pool our thoughts ... and make some funding decisions," Chairman John Dickson said.   Many projects were put on pause with COVID-19 halting some construction and fundraising efforts. The committee entertained not accepting applications for a year but ultimately decided to consider a few projects that may not be

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Pittsfield Schools Outline Some Opening Guidelines
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
04:08AM / Thursday, July 09, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — School officials have made some preliminary plans for back to school this fall even though much uncertainty still surrounds the reopening of school buildings.   Superintendent Jason McCandless gave the School Committee an update Wednesday and compared known state reopening guidelines to what the Pittsfield Public Schools has tentatively planned or is expecting.   "Nothing that you see here is written in stone, it is all subject to change," he said. "We share this with you as information but certainly with the caveat that this is very very likely subject to change."   Although planning to fully reopen, McCandless said the state

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Targeted COVID-19 Testing Set for 8 At-Risk Communities
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:22AM / Thursday, July 09, 2020
BOSTON — People in Western Massachusetts, and the Berkshires in particular, frequently complain the region is being ignored by a state government headquartered at the other end of the commonwealth.   On Wednesday, Gov. Charlie Baker announced a new program that will impact eight municipalities — none west of I-495.   But this is not the kind of list any town or city wants to make.   Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito used their daily press briefing to announce that the commonwealth will offer targeted free COVID-19 testing sites in Chelsea, Everett, Fall River, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, Marlborough, and New Bedford.   All residents of those communities will be

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Baker Pushes Back on Federal Pressure to Open Schools
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com
02:30PM / Wednesday, July 08, 2020
BOSTON -- Gov. Charlie Baker Wednesday said he does not think it “makes sense” for a one-size-fits-all approach to reopening the nation’s public schools but stopped short of directly criticizing a presidential tweet pressuring states to open the schoolhouse doors in the middle of a global pandemic.   Baker was asked in his daily press availability about President Trump’s Tuesday Twitter statement that indicated his administration “May cut off funding if [schools] not open!”   The Republican governor, not for the first time during the COVID-19 pandemic, found himself having to argue against his party’s leader while trying to not get into a

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Early EEE Detection in State Points to Need for Vigilance this Summer
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:53PM / Tuesday, July 07, 2020
PLYMOUTH, Mass. — For nearly four months, Gov. Charlie Baker has addressed the media almost daily about a disease first discovered last year.   On Tuesday, he switched gears to remind residents of a more familiar deadly threat: eastern equine encephalitis.   "I know I speak for the lieutenant governor and myself when I say how much we appreciate the opportunity to speak about something other than COVID," Baker joked during an appearance at the headquarters of the Plymouth County Mosquito Control Project.   But things turned serious as Baker and other other officials talked about EEE, a mosquito-borne illness that infected 12 Bay State residents and killed six

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Pittsfield Woman Dies After Structure Fire
12:46PM / Tuesday, July 07, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A city woman died Monday night at Berkshire Medical Center after a fire in her home, according to a statement from the district attorney's office.   Pittsfield Fire Department responded to the structure fire on Chickering Street shortly after 10 p.m. Firefighters located Frances Lysonski, 74, on the second floor after what they described as an extensive search. Emergency medical services transported her to BMC, where she later died at approximately 11:20 p.m.   A city firefighter sustained non-life-threatening injuries after falling from a ladder while trying to locate the woman. EMS transported him to Berkshire Medical Center, where he was treated

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Berkshire Theatre Group to Present 'Godspell' Outdoors
10:23AM / Tuesday, July 07, 2020

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Theatre Group will produce "Godspell" this summer – the first musical in the United States to be approved by Actors' Equity Association in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The show will be presented outdoors in an open-air tent adjacent to The Colonial Theatre in Pittsfield, and is scheduled to run Aug. 6 through Sept. 4. Tickets will be available for purchase Tuesday, July 7, at noon. 

"We could not bear the thought of a Berkshire summer without live theater to support our community, so we jumped through every hoop to create a safe way to make this happen," said BTG Board of Trustees Co-President Lee Perlman.

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Managing Withdrawals Carefully Can Protect Retirement Income
Submitted by Edward Jones,
10:00AM / Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Throughout much of your working life, you contribute to your 401(k), IRA and other investment accounts to help ensure a comfortable retirement. However, once you do retire, you will need to shift your focus somewhat from building these investments to using them – in other words, you will have to start withdrawing from your portfolio to meet the costs of living. How can you be sure you are not taking out so much that you risk outliving your resources?

First of all, you need to establish a proper withdrawal rate – the percentage of your portfolio's value needed for one year's worth of retirement expenses. Ideally, if you were to stick with this rate, your portfolio would

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