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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

Lanesborough OKs Revised Mount Greylock Agreement, Takes No Action on Animal Bylaw
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
08:42PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2015
LANESBOROUGH, Mass. — Town meeting passed a revision to the agreement with Mount Greylock Regional School District for apportionment of capital costs and chose not to enact restrictions on agricultural animals in residential zones.   The vote was overwhelmingly in favor of the new agreement that changes how capital costs at the high school will be divvied up between the town and Williamstown.   Currently, the responsibilities for project costs are based on a each town's equalized valuations — or the collective value of property values — and enrollment figures. While that determination will remain, the change makes it so the apportionment is calculated each

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Maximize the Benefits of Your Charitable Giving
Submitted by Edward Jones,
03:29PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2015

It’s certainly the season for giving – and when you make charitable gifts, you can both give and receive.

To get the most out of your gifts, your first step is to make sure you are giving to a worthy charity. That means you’ll need to ask some questions. How does a group measure its effectiveness? And does it use its money wisely? Is it devoting as much of its contributions as possible to the actual work of the organization, or is it spending too much money on administrative costs? Generally, a worthwhile charity should spend at least 75 percent of its income on programs.

You may be able to find this type of information in a charitable group’s annual report and on

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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

Gardner Appointed to Williamstown Planning Board
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
02:21PM / Tuesday, December 01, 2015
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — After a nine-year absence, Sarah Gardner is going back on the Planning Board.   On Monday evening, a joint meeting of the Planning Board and Board of Selectmen voted 5-4 to have Gardner fill an empty seat on the panel for five months until she can stand for election in May.   Gardner was one of five residents who applied to fill the seat vacated by Carol Stein-Payne. In May, Gardner will have to go on the town election ballot if she wants to fill the remaining two years left on Stein-Payne's term.   All four of the applicants who attended Monday's meeting told the Selectmen and Planning Board that they either would or likely would seek

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Petition Voices Objection to Proposed Williams Art Museum Site
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:34AM / Tuesday, December 01, 2015
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — While Stephanie Boyd's online petition opposes a new Williams College construction project, she does not see the college as an opponent.   Rather, she says the petition is meant to help the college gauge community opinion of a proposal to build a new williams College Museum of Art at the corner of Main and Southworth Streets.   "I view this as doing a service for the college," Boyd said on Sunday evening. "It's difficult for them to know how to gauge community response to a project. It doesn't make sense for thm to survey the town.   "The only way one can communicate how important an issue this is for the community

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Northern Berkshire Santa Fund Kicks Off 2015 Campaign
03:04AM / Tuesday, December 01, 2015

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Northern Berkshire Santa Fund has kicked off its annual campaign drive to ensure no child in the region goes without a toy this Christmas.

And today, on Giving Tuesday, it's easier than ever to support this time-honored tradition make its goal of $12,000: Click here to donate via PayPal. Check donations also can be sent by mail to P.O. Box 1724, North Adams, MA 01247.

The fund drive provides eligible families in Adams, Cheshire, Clarksburg, Florida, North Adams, Savoy and Williamstown with a gift certificate to buy toys for children 12 and under. Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 8, and can be submitted online or by filling out a

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Berkshire Tidbits: Time for Hanukkah, Christmas Foods
By Judith Lerner, Special to iBerkshires
02:17PM / Monday, November 30, 2015

Holiday Baking & Sweet Treats
at Berkshire Mountain Bakery

Every year, from mid-November through the end of the year, Berkshire Mountain Bakery steps up its fancy baking or, more accurately, its sophisticated sweet-treat baking. Some of their best, most hedonistic breads started as holiday specials.   That's the case for their now-yearround unsweetened cherry-pecan bread and their canelé and their chocolate bouchons, both of which are the size and shape of large wine corks. The canelé is barely moist and a bit chewy, antique in style  from honey and beeswax without the trendy addition of rum or vanilla. The bouchons are dry, rich and deeply chocolate all

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Williamstown Elementary Again Closed by Heating Issue
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
01:18PM / Monday, November 30, 2015

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — For the second time this fall, Williamstown Elementary School is closed for the day due to an issue with the heating system.

Shortly before 7 a.m. on Monday morning, the district used its "robocall" notification system to inform families of the closure.   Superintendent Douglas Dias said later in the morning that a leak in the school's primary boiler caused it to shut down over the weekend.   "Fortunately, the damage was contained to the boiler room itself, but the heat was off and there was no hot water," Dias said. "Considering the fact that the building was cool and not conducive to learning, we decided to play it

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Williams College's Log Reopens After $4.5M Renovation
By Phyllis McGuire, Special to iBerkshires
01:07AM / Monday, November 30, 2015

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Williams College students and alumni can breath a sigh of relief: The character of The Log has been preserved.

Following nine months of extensive renovations, college's favorite gathering place at 78 Spring St. reopened on Nov. 4.

Built in 1941 by Kenneth Reynolds, class of 1916, and donated to the college as an Alumni House, the Log holds many fond memories for Ephs.

"Our goal was to have it look and feel like the old Log, " said local contractor Albert Cummings, who managed the renovation project.

Original wood floors were refinished. Old tabletops, on which past students had carved their names or initials, were salvaged and put to use in

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Slow Formal Session Ends: Berkshire Reps Expect Busy 2016
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:48AM / Sunday, November 29, 2015

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Changes in state leadership has led to a slow start to the legislative session, according to the local representatives.

Formal session concluded for the year last week and all four local members of the House of Representatives said they had hoped to accomplish more by this point. But, the lawmakers say when the session resumes in January, there will be a lot on the agenda.

"It's been moving more slowly than any other session I've been in. I like to think it is happening because we have a new governor, though he has been in for 10 months he is still relatively new, and a new Senate president. As both of those gentlemen are getting their feet under

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Williamstown-Lanesborough Superintendent Looks at Collaboration Among Schools
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
06:51AM / Saturday, November 28, 2015
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Tri-District school superintendent told the Williamstown Elementary School Committee that he is looking at ways to better collaborate among the three districts.   Douglas Dias, who serves as superintendent for Williamstown, Lanesborough Elementary and Mount Greylock Regional, said a recent incident involving a boiler replacement in Williamstown pointed to the need for the three schools to share services.   "As the boiler situation demonstrated, when we had the facilities manager at Mount Greylock come and assist our staff here, there is a need to have cross pollination between the buildings," Dias said at thee School Committee's


@theMarket: Markets Climb Wall of Worry
By Bill Schmick,
03:03PM / Friday, November 27, 2015

It was a week of geopolitical risks and yet the markets managed to hold their own. True to form, investors were bound and determined that this would be a good week for stocks and it was.

Historically, markets do well on Thanksgiving week and this was no exception. Since the turn of the last century, stocks perform well (at least two thirds of the time) during this 3 1/2 day trading week and into the end of the first week of December. So far, this year has been no exception.

Given the headline risks, its performance was quite impressive. Investors had to contend with the shutdown of Brussels for most of the week as authorities ransacked the capital of Belgium in pursuit of suspected


'The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2': Clueless in Panem
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
12:09PM / Friday, November 27, 2015

Point of disclosure: I am beside the point as concerns director Francis Lawrence's "The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2." Not a fan of the franchise, I can only be an object of disdain to the loyal cognoscenti, who will understandably raise their children to distrust me. The fact is, I just don't get it. Then again, I don't understand the whole Justin Bieber thing, either.

Nevertheless, though perhaps only in service to those moviegoers as out of the loop as I, your compromised film critic must trudge on and at least attempt to make sense of this phenomenon which, I am promised, is the final issue of the four-part film series. None of this is to say the


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