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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

@theMarket: O Ye of Little Faith
By Bill Schmick,
09:28AM / Saturday, July 18, 2015

What a difference two weeks make. Back then, if one took the warnings/advice of the media and much of Wall Street, we were facing financial Armageddon. Today, the markets are flirting with new highs. What lessons can we learn from that?

Number one: the media's first and foremost objective is to sell advertising, if that means scaring its target markets into staying tuned (or reading the next page) then so be it. And I'm not just talking about the fringe elements. Greece, China and Puerto Rico led the list of doomsday stories that littered the headlines of some of the top news organizations both here and abroad.

That's where Wall Street comes in. Reporters need sources and


Kinder Morgan Shrinks Pipeline Size; Public Hearings Scheduled
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:12AM / Saturday, July 18, 2015
The state will be holding public hearings to determine the scope of environmental impact reports for the proposed natural gas pipeline. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Kinder Morgan is prepared to move forward with the proposed natural gas pipeline through the Berkshires, albeit the plan is for a somewhat smaller size.   On Thursday, Kinder Morgan announced it will continue with the permitting process for the Northeast Energy Direct Project, a 30-inch (down from 36 inches) pipeline from New York state through the Berkshires to Dracut. The project is a $3.3 billion investment in which the company says would cure a shortage of energy in New England.   "We are excited that


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

Downing Encourages Residents to Seek Out Unclaimed Property
04:14PM / Friday, July 17, 2015

In partnership with the Unclaimed Property Division of the Massachusetts State Treasurer’s Office and State Treasurer Deb Goldberg, State Sen. Benjamin Downing (D- Pittsfield) is reminding residents of his Berkshire, Hampshire, Franklin & Hampden District to search for their name within the divisions’ records.

The division’s website,, allows users to search for property and make claims. This past year more than $112 million was reunited with more than 45,000 residents, businesses and charities in the commonwealth.  This coming year, the Treasury is hoping to return even more money to more citizens.

“We are excited to work with the


The Independent Investor: When 'No' Means 'Yes'
By Bill Schmick,
02:07PM / Friday, July 17, 2015

A Greek referendum less than two weeks ago delivered a resounding "no" when voters were asked to approve the European Community's austerity ultimatum in exchange for a new bailout. While Grecians danced in the streets, global markets tumbled, but fast forward 10 days and we now face an entirely different set of outcomes.

Today the Greek parliament approved an austerity program much tougher than the one they originally rejected in the referendum vote. It was approved by 229 votes out of the 300-seat chamber. In a showdown with the EU, it was either pass the package or get booted out of the Euro.

You may need a little background in order to understand this about face by the


Filson Helps Backstop West to Bay State Games Gold
09:44PM / Thursday, July 16, 2015
WALTHAM, Mass. -- Mount Greylock boys lacrosse goalie Cal Filson won a gold medal Thursday along with his West lacrosse team at the 2015 Summer Bay State Games.   The West team steamrolled the competition throughout the tournament. West defeated the Northeast team 22-3 (Tuesday), the Central team 21-3 (Tuesday), and the Southeast/Coastal team 25-1 (Wednesday) in the preliminaries.   It then went on to defeat the Northeast team 25-1 in the semi-final and the Central team 22-7 in the gold medal game.   Filson shared goalie duties throughout all the games with Brett Jones of Division 2 Minnechaug and Matt Reynolds of Division 2 Westfield. All three goalies were named captains


Bulldogs Dedicate Playoff Run to Injured Player
08:25AM / Thursday, July 16, 2015
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. -- The Bulldogs 11-and-under all-stars will open play in the Cal Ripken State Tournament on Saturday in Pepperell, but they will have to do it without their starting shortstop.   The Bulldogs have dedicated their tournament run to Williamstown resident Oscar Low, who broke his arm last week in a soccer camp.   Low, also an accomplished musician, was one of the key contributors in a pre-tournament run that saw the Bulldogs go 6-4, mostly against teams of 12-year-old all-stars.   "We had his lucky number 7 put on all our hats and are using his misfortune as a positive motivator for our team," Bulldogs coach Rick Paris said.   "We told


BMC North Adds Urologic, Gynecologic Surgeries
04:08PM / Wednesday, July 15, 2015

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Berkshire Health Systems has announced a further expansion of outpatient surgical procedures being performed at the Northern Berkshire Campus of Berkshire Medical Center.

Urologic and gynecologic minimally invasive surgery procedures are now being scheduled for the new operating rooms at the former hospital. They join outpatient orthopedic surgery, which started in January of this year.

Urologic surgery is being performed by Drs. Stephen St. Clair and Kevin Killeen, board-certified specialists with Urology Professional Services of BMC. The urologists are scheduling outpatient surgery for anyone from the age of 15 years and older, including scrotal procedures

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The Classical Beat: Berkshire Night, McDonald at Tanglewood
By Stephen Dankner, Special to iBerkshires
02:03PM / Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Broadway musical theater superstar Audra McDonald brings her own ensemble of great musicians to Tanglewood on Sunday, July 19.

Tanglewood enters its third week, and the highlights are many; indeed, every concert will be unforgettable.

Classic and Romantic composers Mozart and Schumann, featuring their chamber, vocal and orchestral music masterworks on two successive nights, start the ball rolling; even more Mozart follows on Saturday and Sunday morning and afternoon.

Why go? Add to the above the appearance of Broadway actor/musical theater/singer superstar Audra McDonald and the superlative Emerson String Quartet and you have a week of future musical memories that define

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New Free Concert Series Brings Original Indie Rock, Folk To Pittsfield
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
02:01AM / Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Kathy Lloyd, of How We Roll, Crispina ffrench, of Shire City Sanctuary, and Alan Bauman have teamed up to put on the series.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — There is a demographic of residents who would love to see nationally recognized alternative and indie rock musicians performing original music right in the city's downtown.

And a few of those residents got tired of waiting for somebody else to make it happen.

Three local business owners — Alan Bauman, Crispina ffrench, and Kathy Lloyd — have teamed up to put on Shire City Sessions.    In July, August and September, bands will be taking to a newly built stage to give a free concert in the parking lot outside


Adams Terror Suspect Ordered Detained Until Trial
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:55PM / Tuesday, July 14, 2015
A bearded Alexander Ciccolo, seen in this sketch of his appearance in U.S. District Court, was ordered detained until his trial for illegal possession of firearms. More charges are expected to be filed against the terror suspect. SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — The man the federal government suspects of hatching a terror plot in his Adams apartment will be imprisoned until his trial.   Alexander Ciccolo was in federal court on Tuesday afternoon for a detention hearing before U.S. Magistrate Judge Katherine Robertson.   Robertson ruled that the government met its burdens to establish both that Ciccolo is a flight risk and that releasing him posed a danger to the


Detainment Hearing for Adams Terror Suspect
04:20PM / Tuesday, July 14, 2015

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — A hearing is being held for suspected terrorist Alexander Ciccolo in U.s. District Court.

Ciccolo was arrested on July 4 in Adams for being illegally in possession of firearms, according to the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force. Law enforcement officials say the Boston-area native was making plans to attack a college, bars and other venues in support of known terrorist organization ISIL, which is attempting to create a self-proclaimed Islamic State in the Middle East.

Tuesday's hearing is to determine if Ciccolo can be held until his trial.


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Williamstown Raises Tobacco/Nicotine Age to 21
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
11:48PM / Monday, July 13, 2015
Above, Board of Health members Marcia Tessier and Erwin Stuebner examine a 'vape pen' acquired in Williamstown. Left, Dr. Lester Hartman of Needham says he has spoken on raising the tobacco age in communities from Provincetown to Williamstown. WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — You will have to be 21 to buy tobacco or nicotine products in Williamstown as of Sept. 1.   The Board of Health on Monday held a public hearing on proposed changes to raise the legal age from 18 to 21.   Williamstown is the 69th town in the commonwealth to raise the age for tobacco products to 21. The only municipality in Berkshire County to do so, Lanesborough, set an effective date of


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