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Berkshires Beat: Stockbridge Photo Contest Winners To Be Displayed
03:05PM / Monday, August 28, 2017
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Gabrielle Murphy of West Stockbridge's 'Sunrise Over Stockbridge Bowl' was one of the photo contest winners.

Wiliam Mulvihill of Stockbridge's 'Mahkeenac Boating Club from Stockbridge Bowl' was another one of the winning photos.

The winners are...: The Laurel Hill Association and Stockbridge Land Trust selected 10 winning submissions and 10 honorable mentions in their second annual photo contest. The organizations are selling notecards, featuring the winning photos, in several local shops. All proceeds go to the two organizations.

Fifty-four photographers submitted a total of 270 photos. The winning photos were taken by Emilija Baksys of Quincy, Mass.; Glenna Blackwell of Great Barrington, Mass.; Shirley Blanchard of Stockbridge, Mass.; Candy Childrey of Coral Springs, Fla.; Olivia Kinne of Pittsfield, Mass.; Wiliam Mulvhill of Stockbridge, Mass.; Gabrielle Murphy of West Stockbridge, Mass.; Richard Lasner of Washington, D.C., and Stockbridge, Mass.; Jay Rhind of Stockbridge, Mass.; and James Selva of Housatonic, Mass.

Three volunteer judges, Michael Flower, Doug Munson, and Lionel Delevingne, selected the winning and honorable mention photographs. All the winning photos and honorable mention photos can be viewed online. The Stockbridge Library, Museum & Archives will host a month-long exhibition of framed prints of the winning photos in September. An opening reception will be held on Friday, Sept. 1, from to 5 to 7 p.m. Admission is free.

League of their own: The Ladies League at the Lake Saint Catherine Country Club hosted the fourth annual Donna Taft Memorial Golf Tournament on June 17. The event raised $2,000 to benefit the Southwestern Vermont Regional Cancer Center, part of Southwestern Vermont Health Care.
An additional, $2,000 donation was made to Rutland Regional Medical Center's Foley Cancer Center. Generous sponsors included nearly 60 businesses, professionals and private citizens in the Bennington, Manchester and Rutland, Vt., areas. For more information about next year's tournament, contact Rhonda Wade 802-259-3902 or be email.

Work in progress: Pittsfield's Tyler Street District Storefront Improvement Enhancement Program is now accepting applications from prospective businesses in the TDI district. The pilot program will help an estimated four to five storefronts in the vicinity. Hard copies of the applications will be available in the Community Development at City Hall and online here.

Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until participants are selected. The program centers on improvements to the exterior of buildings facing Tyler Street including facade renovations; window replacement; door replacement; exterior lighting (affixed to the building, not lighted signs or freestanding signs); lighting at the interior of the façade/windows; painting, awnings (new or replacements); and signage.

The city was awarded a $30,000 grant this past spring through MassDevelopment toward the Tyler Street Storefront Improvement Enhancement Program. Additionally, the City Council approved matching funds of $30,000 the city’s 40R funds toward the program. In addition to MassDevelopment, the city’s Community Development Department will work in concert with the Tyler Street Business Group on the initiative and selection process.

Applicants are encouraged to seek free professional business advice from the Berkshire Regional Office of the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network located at 33 Dunham Mall, Suite 103, or can be reached at 413-499-0933; such consultation is encouraged both before and during the application process.

Exit closure: A temporary exit closure will be in place on the I-90 Exit 1 eastbound on-ramp in West Stockbridge.  The purpose of the temporary closure is to facilitate the safe placement of the final pavement course. The schedule for this work is weather dependent and subject to change without notice.
Exit 1 will be closed Thursday night, Aug. 31, at 7 p.m., and will reopen Friday morning, Sept. 1, at 7 a.m. A signed detour will direct commuters to Route 102 east to the Exit 2 eastbound on-ramp in Lee. Variable message boards will be in place on Route 41 and Route 102 will notify commuters of this detour in advance.

Just keep swimming: The Lenox Town Beach will be open through Sept. 5. While no lifeguards are on duty, bathrooms will remain open.

Lifelong learning: All new students who wish to prepare for the GED or HiSET exam or earn an adult diploma at the Pittsfield Adult Learning Center in downtown Pittsfield must pre-register for an orientation by calling the center at 413-499-9530.  The two-hour orientation will be offered at 10 a.m. or 1 p.m. on Aug. 30 or 31 and at 10 a.m. on Sept. 1.

New students interested in learning or improving English as a Second Language (ESL) must register in person at the center from 8:30 to 11:30 on Sept. 11 or 12. All returning students are asked to call or stop in prior to September 13 to schedule an appointment. Call 413-499-9530 for more information if you are unable to come in on the scheduled dates and times.

The Pittsfield Adult Learning Center at 141 North St. in Pittsfield has been offering free adult basic education and ESOL classes to individuals age 16 or older since 1976.  The center also provides individualized attention, education and career advising, workplace readiness skills, and flexible hours through distance learning.

BCC South classes: Berkshire Community College is offering a wide variety of noncredit workshops this fall in at BCC's South County Center on Main Street in Great Barrington in music, writing and art.

Local musician and teacher, David Hodge is scheduled to offer a full slate of semester-long music workshops this fall at Berkshire Community College's South County Center. On Tuesday evenings, Sept. 5 to Dec. 12, 15-week lessons are slated for: Continuing Guitar from 5 to 6 p.m. at a cost of $150; Beginning Classical & Spanish Guitar from 6 to 7 p.m. for  $150; Basics of Harmony from 7 to 7:30 p.m. for $75; and Songwriting from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at a cost of $150.

As a compliment to Hodge's Basics of Harmony class, Erika Ludwig, Founder of Berkshire Strings, will also offer a new 13-week Applied Harmony class on Tuesday evenings, Sept. 12 to Dec. 12, from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. at a cost of $130. No class will be held on Nov. 21. On Thursday evenings, Sept. 7 to Dec. 14, 14-week classes at a cost of $140 each are scheduled for: Absolute Beginners’ Guitar from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.; Beginning Ukulele from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.; Mastering the Ukulele from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; and Fall Jam, with all instruments welcome to join, from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Local artist and teacher, Naomi Klavun, is offering two 10-week art workshops this fall at a cost of $250 each: Landscape Painting in Pastel, Acrylic & Multimedia is scheduled for Mondays, Sept. 11 to Nov. 20 from 2:30 to 5 p.m. with no class on Oct. 9 and  Abstract Painting on Tuesdays, Sept. 12 to Nov. 14, from 2 to 4:30 p.m.
Tegan Cook, artist and owner of White Buffalo Studios, is offering Concrete Leaf & Garden Art Casting classes at South County Center. Using a unique engineered and easily sourced concrete mix, participants will learn how to cast leaves, create garden planters, and gain knowledge of how to create other outdoor items. Single-session classes, running from 9 a.m. to noon are slated for Thursdays, Sept. 21, Oct. 12, and Nov. 16. Cost is $70 with a $20 materials fee payable to the instructor.

Klavun also will offer a Poetry Writing workshop on Thursdays, Sept. 21 to Nov. 9, from 3:15 to 4:45 p.m. to help participants discover their own poetic voice. Cost $120 for eight 90-minute sessions. Writing consultant, Millie Calesky, will offer one session for Break through Your Writing Obstacles on Thursday, Sept. 28 from 6 to 8 p.m. This workshop explores to most common roadblocks that writers encounter. Cost is $20. Thaddeus Kubis, consultant, will also offer a new workshop, Writing With Pictures: Telling Your Story, on Thursdays, Sept. 14 to Oct. 5 from 6 to 8 p.m. Learn to use words and photos to enhance the story you are trying to tell. Cost is $80 for the four-week program. For more information and online registration, go online or call 413-528-4521.


Solitary life: A Solitary Housing Unit (SHU) Replica will be on display at the Columbia County Fair from Aug. 31 through Sept. 4. The display is sponsored by Old Chatham Quaker Meeting and will be staffed by members of the meeting and associated volunteers. Handouts will be available and books will be for sale on aspects of mass incarceration. 

People in a SHU in New York State spend 22 to 24 hours a day locked in a cell the size of an elevator, alone or with one other person. Over 40 percent of all suicides in N.Y. prisons in 2014 and 2015 took place in solitary, though only 9 percent of all people in prison are in solitary. The SHU is still used in New York State prisons despite a 2015 agreement NYS is implementing to reduce its use. Around 80,000 of the 2.2 million people currently incarcerated in the U.S. are in SHUs. The entire United Nations General Assembly has denounced solitary exceeding 15 days.

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