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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

CSX Acquiring Pan Am Railways
Staff Reports,
05:21PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — CSX Corp. says it has signed an agreement to acquire North Billerica-headquartered Pan Am Railways Inc.    Pan Am is considered the largest regional railroad with a 1,700-mile rail network in New England and New York and a partial interest in the more than 600-mile Pan Am Southern system. Its tracks run through the Hoosac Tunnel.    "Pan Am is pleased to reach this agreement with CSX, a North American leader in rail-based freight transportation," Pan Am President David A. Fink said in a statement announcing the deal. "This is great news for New England shippers and the national freight network overall."   Pan Am,

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Second Positive Test Sends Mount Greylock to Remote Learning
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com
02:13PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- After a second positive COVID-19 test in a Mount Greylock Regional School student in as many days, the middle-high school is switching to remote learning through Wednesday, Dec. 9.   Principal Jacob Schutz notified the school community of the move in an email Tuesday afternoon. The announcement was repeated on school's home page.   Schutz said said the move was being made "out of an abundance of caution."   "This short hiatus of in-person learning provides time and space for us to validate our current safety practices and procedures and further improve our confidence that there was no transmission within the building," Schutz

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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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Baker: COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout to Begin This Month
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
01:37PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2020
BOSTON — Widespread access to COVID-19 vaccines probably won't occur until late spring, Gov. Charlie Baker said at his pandemic update on Tuesday.    The governor said he anticipated that the focus would be on high-risk individuals as the vaccines are rolled out in December and the first part of the year.   "The focus is going to be on the people we are all the most worried about, right, either because of what they do for work or because of their age, or because of their physical condition," he said.   Federal officials on a call Monday told governors that the vaccine distribution is expected to begin in mid-December and through March, Baker said. The

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Holiday Events and Tree Lightings 2020
04:15PM / Monday, November 30, 2020

This year's holiday gatherings and annual tree lightings are looking much different because of the novel coronavirus pandemic. Many events have been canceled or are being held virtually and/or broadcast on Facebook or local public access channels. Here's what we have so far in events below. If we're missing any, let us know at info@iBerkshires.com

Holiday Events

Adams: St. Stanislaus Kostka School is holding a virtual bazaar from Friday, Nov. 20, to 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 4. Take a chance on more than 40 prizes valued at $75-$100 each. https://go.rallyup.com/ststansbazaarraffle

Lenox: NightWood, a light, sound, and color event, runs at The Mount through Jan. 3.

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Lever Seeks Applicants for Mohawk Trail Entrepreneur Challenge
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:03AM / Monday, November 30, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Entrepreneurs have about two weeks to apply for a grant program that looks to support sustainable, woodland-related businesses.   Lever Inc. in North Adams is hosting the Mohawk Trail Entrepreneur Challenge, which offers a prize of $25,000 to the winner and guidance in developing a business plan to all who apply.   It is the latest in a series of challenges organized by Lever, which has helped launch 46 new companies in the Berkshire regions since its inception in 2014.   This time around, Lever is partnering with the Mohawk Trail Woodlands Partnership, a collaboration of 16 municipalities in Franklin and Berkshire County's Mohawk Trail (Route

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In Lanesborough, Williamstown Schools, 'We Over Me' Ethic Promotes Safety
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:54AM / Sunday, November 29, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — In the Old Testament it says, "a little child shall lead them."   In the Mount Greylock Regional School District, the kids are up to that leadership role.   "As [Lanesborough Elementary School Principal Nolan Pratt] said, our students are probably the number one reason why we are actually maintaining safety," Williamstown Elementary Principal Kristen Thompson told the School Committee on Monday night. "They are maintaining their social distancing, they're sanitizing, and you should see how quickly they're able to come into the building now. They know if they're on the list or they're not on the list, and they

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Hotels, Meals Tax in Williamstown Shows Impact of Pandemic
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
05:22PM / Friday, November 27, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Numbers from the Massachusetts Department of Revenue indicate the town's lodging industry lost 57 percent of its business from April through September compared with 2019.   Town Manager Jason Hoch reported those statistics to the Select Board on Monday night to demonstrate how much the local economy has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.   The numbers come from the DOR's report of local lodging establishments' liability under the rooms and meals tax. Although the commonwealth has given businesses the "small relief" of being able to defer those tax payments, the amount they owe still shows up on the books, Hoch said.   In

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@theMarket: Market Cyclicals Take the Lead
By Bill Schmick,
04:37PM / Friday, November 27, 2020
It was a good week for investors, which is not surprising since Thanksgiving week has been kind to investors in the past. The question is, will December fulfill its role as one of the year's best months for stocks?   The short answer is yes, I don't see why not. My recent target for the S&P 500 Index is 3,800, but it is possible that I may be too conservative. An additional spike up to the 4,000 level might be in the cards sometime early next year, but one week at a time. What is the bull case for those lofty predictions?   I have long argued that a coronavirus vaccine was key to the economy and the market's future performance. We now have at least three vaccines

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State Declares 'Green Friday' in Support of Local Xmas Tree Farms
03:29PM / Friday, November 27, 2020
UXBRIDGE, Mass. — The Baker-Polito administration has declared Friday, Nov. 27, as "Green Friday" to encourage people across the commonwealth to visit their local farms and nurseries for Christmas trees, holiday plants, and holiday decorating needs.   To celebrate, state Department of Agricultural Resources Commissioner John Lebeaux participated in a Christmas tree-cutting ceremony at Arrowhead Acres in Uxbridge. In an effort to support the commonwealth's Christmas tree industry, the declaration of Green Friday encourages people throughout the state to visit their local Christmas tree farms to purchase their trees, holiday plants, ornamental swags, and wreaths to

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Wells Presented Superintendent's Award at Mount Greylock
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:56AM / Friday, November 27, 2020
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Jake McCandless is new to the Mount Greylock Regional School District, but he is no stranger to the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents' Academic Excellence Award.   He has been around them since he was an administrator in the Lee Public Schools in 2002 and has been giving them out in Pittsfield since 2013.   And he has figured out what all those winners have in common.   "All of the times I've seen this award given or actually had the pleasure of giving this award, there's a really thick thread that runs through the story of every student who I have ever seen receive this award," McCandless said. "That

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Pittsfield Looks to Adopt Alternate Side Parking
By Brittany Polito, iBerkshires Staff
01:12AM / Friday, November 27, 2020
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The city of Pittsfield is working to refine snow emergency parking in two steps. The first step is the adoption of a new snow emergency regulations for alternate side parking, and the second is to repeal overnight parking regulations so that residents can park on the street all year long.   On Tuesday, the City Council ordained an alternate side parking petition, which is a traffic law that dictates which side of the street vehicles can be parked on a given day based on even and odd street numbers.   Alternate side parking aims to allow for more efficient seasonal cleanup and for high-density areas that may not have sufficient parking, such as the

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The Retired Investor: Pandemic Has Been Good to Pet Industry
By Bill Schmick,
04:30PM / Thursday, November 26, 2020
Sales are increasing wherever you look in the pet sector. Toys, beds, grooming products, leashes, day care, you name it; the pet industry is experiencing double-digit increases in revenue. Better yet, there are few signs that consumer spending in this area will slow down anytime soon.   As readers are aware, the retail sector has been one of the hardest hit as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The pet care industry is an exception to that rule. In the past, I have written extensively about how recession-proof the pet industry can be.  In both the 2001 and 2008 recessions, pet care sales grew between 5-7 percent. Consumer spending on pets has grown 36 percent in the past 10

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