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News and events in Williamstown, Mass.

Williamstown Planning Board: Keep Working on Waubeeka Zoning Proposal
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
04:09PM / Sunday, November 01, 2015
The Planning Board evinced support for a proposed inn at Waubeeka but said it would require a town meeting approval to change the zoning. WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The Planning Board continues to encourage the owner of Waubeeka Golf Links to work with town officials on a proposal for a zoning change that would allow an inn at the course.   At its most recent meeting, three members of the five-member board told Michael Deep and his attorney to sit down with Town Planner Andrew Groff and board member Ann McCallum to develop draft proposals for the board to consider at its November meeting.   The board could put a bylaw before May's annual town meeting that would allow

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@theMarket: How High Will We go?
By Bill Schmick,
10:24AM / Saturday, October 31, 2015

The markets have two months to recoup their losses and deliver positive returns to investors. With this year's correction behind us, the question to ask is will the markets deliver positive returns for 2015 and, if so, what will they be?

As October comes to an end, historically the month of November is positive for the stock market. December and the traditional Christmas rally it typically generates combine to make these two months the best period for positive returns all year. Chances are high that this year the stock market will perform according to this behavior pattern.

I say that because so far in 2015, if you had followed the historical behavior of the markets: "sell in


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

Q&A: Ali Benjamin and the Thing About Award-Winning Fiction
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
05:28AM / Saturday, October 31, 2015
Williamstown's Ali Benjamin is on the short list for a National Book Award. WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Ali Benjamin does not want to win the National Book Award.   OK, maybe that is overstating things. But it is fair to say that she is ambivalent about being on the short list for the honor, which will be awarded on Nov. 18 in New York City.   "There are so many good books in the running," Benjamin said this week. "One is 'Challenger Deep,' about a 15-year-old boy who has a schizophrenic breakdown.   "It's such a wonderful story, an entertaining story. It was so well done. If this guy gets it, I'm going to be so


The Independent Investor: Budget Deal Craters Social Security Strategies
By Bill Schmick,
06:14PM / Friday, October 30, 2015

The congressional budget deal that was passed last night will have a dramatic impact on several Social Security strategies. If you have been using, or considering using, the file and suspend clause to increase your Social Security payments, think again.

Back in February of this year, I wrote a column on "How to make the most out of Social Security." I explained that you could improve your total social security benefits, as well as your spouse's, by almost 13 percent by the time you both reach the age of 70. It's called "file and suspend" and occurs when the Social Security claimant files for benefits and then suspends receiving them, while collecting benefits


Habitat for Humanity Christmas Trees Now on Sale for Showcase
02:04PM / Friday, October 30, 2015

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Northern Berkshire Habitat for Humanity will hold its annual Christmas Tree Showcase at the First Congregational Church on Main Street in Williamstown on Saturday, Dec. 5, from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., as part of the annual Williamstown Holiday Walk.
Last year more than 100 trees were raffled off. Each year the creativity of participants grows. Some of the trees have themes, while others have a more traditional holiday flare. Previous theme trees have been: birds in paradise, snowflakes and lights, athletics, story time, skiing, apples, toy land, dogs & cats and more. Both children and adults alike had fun putting their raffle tickets in the box for the


'Steve Jobs': Doesn't Get to the Core of the Apple
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
09:14AM / Friday, October 30, 2015

Whether meant to be a metaphor, simile, allegory or any of those other words describing an indirect representation of something or another, director Danny Boyle's eponymously titled "Steve Jobs" uses not a plot, but rather, an operating system to tell its tale. This latest attempt to nail down just who this enigmatic genius behind the PC revolution was is told via the events surrounding three major product launches. Each is a grand, staged event attended by adoring devotees and the press, where cataclysmic push comes to shove each time.

While I'd bet a gaggle of gigabytes that the grandiloquent speeches and pontifications serving as backstage dialogue at each of the


MassDOT's Hearing Procedures Anger Berkshire Residents
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
01:10AM / Friday, October 30, 2015
MassDOT Aeronautics Division Administrator Jeffrey DeCarlo refused to change format despite many in the crowd calling for public conversation. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire County's feeling that the state doesn't listen to them when it comes to transportation needs was further exasperated Thursday night.   The Massachusetts Department of Transportation held what was billed as a "community conversation" in City Hall and attracted more than two dozen residents and town officials.   But, instead of holding a "capital conversation," MassDOT officials shuttled people to take online surveys and to have private conversations with


Mount Greylock Chooses Turner as Construction Manager
07:48PM / Thursday, October 29, 2015
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- The Mount Greylock School Committee on Thursday voted to enter into negotiations with New York City's Turner Construction to be the construction manager at risk on the district's planned addition/renovation project.   Turner interviewed on Thursday along with Gilbane Development of Philadelphia and Shawmut Design and Construction of West Springfield with a CM selection subcommittee, which voted to recommend Turner to the School Building Committee.   In turn, the School Building Committee voted to recommend Turner to the School Committee with Gilbane as a second choice.   "All three firms made our choice difficult today," School


ABC Clothing Sale Donates $20,000 to Five Local Charities
02:44PM / Wednesday, October 28, 2015

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — The ABC Clothing Sale Steering Committee is distributing $20,000 in unrestricted grants from the proceeds of the annual ABC Clothing Sale on Sept. 26 to five local organizations.

“ABC” stands for “A Better Community,” echoing the sale’s commitment to recycling clothing and household linens, and their mission to benefit local charitable organizations that serve at-risk families and youth and address hunger, poverty and inequality in Northern Berkshire communities.

Each October the Steering Committee - in collaboration with the Outreach Ministry Team of the First Congregational Church of Williamstown, which has a long history of


Berkshire Taconic Announces New President
12:34PM / Wednesday, October 28, 2015

SHEFFIELD, Mass.— The board of directors of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation have appointed Peter Taylor as president.

Taylor, who was selected after a national search, will be the fourth president in the foundation’s nearly 30-year history.

Taylor comes to Berkshire Taconic from the Maine Community Foundation, a statewide community foundation with $400 million in assets and 1,500 funds, where he currently serves as vice president of program development and grantmaking services.

“We are thrilled that Peter Taylor will join us to lead Berkshire Taconic into the future,” said Bill Dunlaevy, chair of the board of directors. “His track record of fostering


Beware of Scary Inhabitants of the Investment World
10:47AM / Wednesday, October 28, 2015

In just a few days, witches, zombies and vampires will be converging on your house, asking for candy. As is the case every Halloween, you likely will be merely amused over the sight of these costumed characters.

But in other areas of life, such as the investment world, you may need to watch out for some seemingly scary entities. Here are a few of them:

* The Horrendous Headline: Big, glaring headlines rarely offer any comfort to investors. Whether it’s political squabbles at home, conflicts in the Middle East or the debt crisis in the eurozone, there’s always something happening that’s perceived as jeopardizing the stability of the financial markets. Yet these threats


Words Are Wonderful Parade Marches Around WES
10:11AM / Wednesday, October 28, 2015

A trio of fourth-grade friends chose to go as the three friends from the 'Dork Diaries' book series in the annual Words Are Wonderful costume parade at Williamstown Elementary School. More photos online here.

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. —The students and staff of Williamstown Elementary School paraded around the school Wednesday morning for the school's annual Words Are Wonderful costume parade.

The costume parade encourages both the students and the staff to dress as their favorite character from a book or their favorite word. The parade is part of the school's Words Are Wonderful program, a community-wide celebration of the power and magic of words that


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