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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

Q&A: Powna Woman Conquers Appalachian Trail After Detour
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
08:06AM / Sunday, September 25, 2016

Hannah Cochran's 'weird selfie' atop of a sleety Mount Katahdin. NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Hannah Cochran is a hiker through and through, but she is not a "thru-hiker," not technically, at least not in her opinion.   Others would differ with the Pownal, Vt., resident and Mount Greylock Regional School graduate.   Cochran launched an attempt to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail in 2014. But before she could complete the 2,190-mile trek from Georgia to Maine, she was sidetracked by the news that her father in Hancock was diagnosed and being treated for cancer.   Understandably, she decided to forego her dream and be with her family. But this summer,

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North Adams Recovery Event Hears Voices of Recovery, Pain
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
09:00PM / Saturday, September 24, 2016

Rebecca Dodge, founder of the Have Hope Initiative, speaks about the struggles of addiction.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The goal of the annual recovery vigil has been to shine a light on a scourge that's affected families and communities across the nation: Addiction.

"I have kept my demons at bay for 13 years and six months," said Rebecca Dodge, recalling her fall into drug abuse in the early 2000s. But many of her friends haven't been as successful, she told the gathering Noel Field Athletic Complex for the Voices of Recovery event on Saturday afternoon.

Her friend, Hope Benoit, succumbed several years ago leading her to found the Have Hope Initiative. But just

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Feeding the hungry
by buddy 04:12PM / Friday, February 21, 2014

Williamstown Community Preschool Installs New Signage
by Billsville 02:46PM / Tuesday, February 26, 2013


WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Williamstown Community Preschool began sprucing up its new home by hiring local sign maker Lindsay Neathawk,

Williamstown Youth Center Thanks Bedard Bros.
by Billsville 02:13PM / Friday, June 22, 2012
Bedard Brothers Chevrolet, through the Chevrolet Youth Soccer Program, has helped sponsor the Williamstown Youth Center's Soccer Program for the 2012 season. In addition to soccer equipment, this
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BRTA Considering New Loop Route for North Adams
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
06:24PM / Friday, September 23, 2016

Administrator Robert Malnati says he rides the bus when he can to see how things are working.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Berkshire Regional Transit Authority is considering a new loop in North Adams as a way to get its riders where they need to go in a faster and cost-neutral manner.

Dubbed "Route 65" for the moment, the loop as currently proposed would start and end at the Walmart Supercenter on Curran Highway every hour starting at 6:30 a.m. Route 1 from Walmart south would continue until 6:30 p.m.

The loop route would hit the Ocean State Job Lots plaza (turnaround), Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, Main Street, two stops at Mohawk Forest, Berkshire Medical Center

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@theMarket: The Same Old Song
By Bill Schmick,
06:16PM / Friday, September 23, 2016

Investors have been waiting all year for that elusive interest rate hike promised by our central bank. September proved to be another false start. Once again, markets rallied on the news, the dollar fell, and investors were happy. So what's new?

As we have written so many times in the past, investors and markets are fixated on a Fed rate hike. Now everyone's attention is on December. Janet Yellen, the Fed chieftain, indicated that she could see at least one rate hike this year — if the data warrants it. The problem is the economic numbers are, at best, inconclusive.

Even the central bank, in this last go-around at the FOMC, lowered its forecast for the future, long-term,

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Fulbright Teaching Assistant Joins Williams College
05:18PM / Friday, September 23, 2016

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — María Pía Maiti from Argentina has been awarded a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA) Program grant to serve as a teaching associate in Spanish and take courses at Williams College for academic year 2016-17. 

While in the United States, Maiti will share her language and culture with U.S. communities to inspire Americans to travel and study overseas, and make U.S. citizens better prepared to engage with businesses, governments, and organizations abroad.

Pía Maiti is one of nearly 400 young educators from 50 countries who has traveled to the United States for the 2016-2017 academic year through the Fulbright FLTA Program

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Adams' Fourth Annual Great Chair Auction Open For Bids
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
12:39PM / Friday, September 23, 2016

Mazzucco says a few words before launching the auction. 

ADAMS, Mass. — From comic and cartoon characters to paeans to nature, this year's Great Chair Auction offering up some fantastical seating for enjoying — or just viewing.

The annual fundraiser for Youth Center Inc. commenced after an official ribbon cutting Wednesday at the former Simmons Furniture Store on Park Street.

Town Administrator Tony Mazzucco got to clip the ribbon before joining in on the Artists' Walk along Park Street, where many of the items for auction can be seen on display in store windows.

"This is a great event and I look forward to cutting the ribbon every year," Mazzucco

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Village Ambulance Launches Fund Drive at Time of Critical Need
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:48AM / Friday, September 23, 2016

The nonprofit has started a non-emergency van service as  way to help support its mission. WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The emergency medical technicians at Village Ambulance Service know how to treat a wound and save a life, but right now, through no fault of its own, the non-profit is hemorrhaging money.   Because of changing trends in its industry, VAS is operating in the red and dipping into its reserves. It hopes the fund drive it kicks off this week will help make for a healthier bottom line.   "I don't think a lot of people in town realize that we are not subsidized by any town organization or any other organization," explained Dr. Erwin Stuebner,

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The Independent Investor: The Impact of One Bad Apple
By Bill Schmick,
06:31PM / Thursday, September 22, 2016

For years, the mantra of Corporate America has been that they are drowning in government rules and regulations. Small business has echoed that refrain, as has Wall Street. The problem is that these same entities continually shoot themselves in the foot.

Over the last two weeks, thanks to Wells Fargo in the banking sector, and Mylan Labs in pharmaceuticals, Corporate America has once again reminded us of that business just can't be trusted. In the case of Wells Fargo, over 2 million fictitious customer accounts were opened over several years in order to meet sales goals.

Critics say Mylan Labs' 500 percent increase (since 2007) in the cost of a device called EpiPen that treats

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'Bridget Jones's Baby': Sweet, Cute and Crawls
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
06:25PM / Thursday, September 22, 2016

While the average gestation period for human women is nine months (280 days to be specific), it sure seems to take a lot longer in the sweet, cute but oh-so-slow moving "Bridget Jones's Baby."

Folks who just absolutely love this franchise, featuring Renée Zellweger's intrepid single gal, perhaps won't mind the ultra-dawdling exposition, wherein she takes inventory of her unmarried life thus far. As iterated by her properly British, office-seeking Mum, while still (accent on the still) unwed, she has a great job as a TV news producer, and a nice flat. But then there's the truth.

Tsk, tsk. Maybe things will take a turn for the romantically brighter which,

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Williamstown Public Safety Group Finds No Option to Combine Police, Fire Facilities
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:05AM / Thursday, September 22, 2016

Police Sgt. Scott McGowan said the police station is 'disgusting' and in desparate need of replacement. WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — If the Public Safety Building Study Committee has its way, it may not be the Public Safety Building Study Committee much longer.   The panel Tuesday decided to ask the Board of Selectmen to give the committee a new focus: developing a plan for a new police station.   After years of analysis, the committee reluctantly concluded that the town has no viable option for a combined police and fire facility and should turn its attention to replacing the outdated and inadequate police station, currently housed at Town Hall.   The committee

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AG: No Open Meeting Law Violation by Williamstown Planning Board
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:30PM / Wednesday, September 21, 2016
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The attorney general's office determined there is no evidence of an Open Meeting Law violation by members of the Planning Board with respect to its deliberations on the Waubeeka Golf Links zoning bylaw earlier this year.   In a letter dated Monday and posted on the AGO's website, Assistant Attorney General Kevin W. Manganaro writes that "we find that the Board did not violate the Open Meeting Law.   "In reaching a determination, we reviewed the original complaint, the Board's response, and the request for further review filed with our office. We also reviewed the minutes of two Board meetings held on April 28 and May 4. Finally, we

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Berkshire Works Job Fair Connects Job Seekers With Open Positions
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
11:04AM / Wednesday, September 21, 2016

A steady flow of people looking for work or looking for a new opportunity browsed the positions available from an array of industries and educational organizations. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Hundreds of people looking to advance their careers or get into the workforce browsed through an array of available jobs at the Berkshire Works annual job fair Wednesday.   The annual event had such a demand for employers to showcase their opportunities that Stephanie Hambelton, business service representative for Berkshire Works, said there was a wait list. The Crowne Plaza's space restricted the number of vendors to 66 and there were still employers looking to

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