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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

Southfield Fire Destroys One Building, Damages Second
Staff Reports,
01:07PM / Friday, March 15, 2019
NEW MARLBOROUGH, Mass. — An early morning fire Friday in Southfield damaged one building and destroyed another on Norfolk Road.    The 1800s-era single-family home at 155 Norfolk Road was destroyed and the neighboring former Baptist Church damaged. It took several hours for firefighters to contain the blaze. The fires occurred not far from the New Marlborough Fire Station.    "The house was fully involved and beyond saving," Fire Chief Charles Loring III told ABC's News10. "So we concentrated on the church, the church turned into a home. We concentrated on that and were able to save it."   The call came in around 3 a.m. and at least

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Steiner School Taps New First-Grade Teacher
11:53AM / Friday, March 15, 2019

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Anna Taiga is joining Great Barrington Rudolf Steiner School at first-grade class teacher for the 2019-20 school year.

Taiga was selected from a pool of applicants after an international search. At the Steiner School, as in most Waldorf schools worldwide, grade-school class teachers practice "looping," moving through the grade school curriculum with their classes and building strong, long-term relationships, for up to eight years.

"We are so happy to welcome Anna Taiga as teacher for the Class of 2027," said Steiner Board of Trustees President Chris Lee. "She is already a valued member of our teaching staff, working effectively

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Jacob's Pillow Names Fellowship Recipient
11:46AM / Friday, March 15, 2019

BECKET, Mass. — Bryan Arias, artistic director of ARIAS Company, has received the Jacob's Pillow Fellowship at Tilles Center for the Performing Arts at LIU Post.

The fellowship includes a $15,000 grant, a residency at the Pillow Lab, and a residency at LIU Tilles Center. The newly established fellowship represents a shared vision between the two organizations to broaden resources that allow artists to thrive and bring new work to stages in Massachusetts, New York and beyond.

"Support for artists, both in residency time and financial support toward the creation of a new work, is essential for moving the field forward. This robust fellowship, made possible by Roger Tilles,

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The Independent Investor: Does Our Debt Really Matter?
By Bill Schmick,
04:34PM / Thursday, March 14, 2019
The country's national debt hovers at historically record highs, as the nation's budget battle begins. It's a pretty safe bet to expect another budget-busting compromise as well as a hefty increase to our already-overwhelming debt load.   At times like this I wonder whether Americans are facing the prospect that someday the United States could be the world's largest impoverished nation, and if so, does it really matter?   Last week's column examined the subject of debt, both private and domestic, and how large it has become. This week, I begin by asking why debt matters at all? On a personal level, we know the answer, but what about the nation?   Debt has

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'Captain Marvel': Brave New Suffragette
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
12:43PM / Thursday, March 14, 2019
Unless you're a card-carrying, dyed-in-the-wool devotee of comic-book film extravaganzas like "Captain Marvel," they can be extremely difficult to follow. Each is chockfull of series lore, a veritable encyclopedia of minutiae that aficionados of the genre demand, and from which they deliriously kvell when given the slightest opportunity to relate in oral treatise. While too lazy to submerge my gray matter into the seemingly endless intricacies each example of the filmic breed holds, I am respectful of the passion, even if it's just to prove I'm not as much a fuddy-duddy and beside the point as I actually am.   As a stranger in a strange land, my modus operandi is

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Five Dead in Sheffield Structure Fire
Staff Reports,
02:41PM / Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Multiple fire departments responded to the single-family home on Home Road. SHEFFIELD, Mass. — Authorities are investigating a Wednesday morning structure fire on Home Road that left five people dead.    "This is an extensive operation and investigation with multiple local and state agencies," said Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington at a brief press conference around 2:30 p.m. at Town Hall. "It's going to take us some time before we can get you more information."   Harrington said the fire at 1343 Home Road was fully involved when responders arrived on scene and was knocked down at about 9:15 on Wednesday morning and determined

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Berkshire Beat: Simon's Rock Preparing for 'Everyone Swims' Program
12:20PM / Wednesday, March 13, 2019
'Everyone Swims'

The Kilpatrick Athletic Center at Simon's Rock College of Bard will host the "Everyone Swims" initiative this spring to give students, faculty, staff, and community members of all ages the opportunity to develop and strengthen their skills in the water. During Everyone Swims, the college will host free swimming lessons for children and adults. The initiative is one part of the year-round programming that promotes health, wellness, and safety.

Learners will focus on the five competencies of safe swimming as outlined by the American Red Cross: jumping in water over their head, treading water, turning 360 degrees, swimming across the pool, and getting

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Put Together a Professional Team to Help You Reach Your Goals
Submitted by Edward Jones,
10:16AM / Wednesday, March 13, 2019

As you work toward achieving your goals in life, you will need to make moves that contain financial, tax and legal elements, so you may want to get some help – from more than one source.

Specifically, you might want to put together a team comprised of your financial advisor, your CPA or other tax professional, and your attorney. Together, this team can help you with many types of financial/tax/legal connections.

For starters, you may decide, possibly upon the recommendation of your financial advisor, to sell some investments and use the proceeds to buy others that may now be more appropriate for your needs. If you sell some investments you have held for a year or less and realize a

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MCLA Expands Pittsfield Presence With New Location
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:31PM / Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Professor Deborah Foss said the college has support adult learners for a long time. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Michael Steben earned an associates degree from BCC and then built a career in information technology.   He worked his way up in the industry and he got offered a leadership position, heading the IT Department for the city of Pittsfield.   It didn't take him long to realize that he needed to learn more beyond just technology.   "I've had a rewarding career as a technical person and I've recently been promoted to a management position. In my new role, I quickly came to realize that despite my technical prowess, I didn't know much about being

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March 16-17 is Maple Weekend in Massachusetts
12:12PM / Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Massachusetts maple producers will have lots of pure maple products on hand for visitors to sample and purchase during Maple Weekend, set for March 16-17.

To celebrate the state’s earliest and sweetest crop, more than 40 sugarhouses are highlighting this wonderful food. A list of participating sugarhouses are available on the website.

Sugarhouses around the state will be open to the public for tours, demonstrations and tastings, and opportunities to learn all about how maple syrup is produced and how it can be used. Visitors will also be able to buy fresh maple products direct from the farms. Each farm's offerings are unique -- from a team of oxen gathering sap, to walks

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Miss Hall's School Announces Head's List, Honor Roll
11:30AM / Tuesday, March 12, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Miss Hall's School has announced 48 local students among the 149 girls schoolwide named to the Head's List and Honor Roll for the first semester, which ended Jan. 22.

For Head's List recognition, students must have taken five major, full-credit courses and must maintain a minimum grade-point average of 92, with no single grade below B-plus.

For Honor Roll recognition, students must have taken five major, full-credit courses and must maintain a minimum grade-point average of 86, with no single grade below B-minus.

Head's List

Grade 12: Charlotte Adelson, Lee; Trudy Fadding, Glendale; Haylee Gleason, Pittsfield; Faia Kronick, Pittsfield; Sophia

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Region 1 Science Fair Encourages Student Research
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
04:39PM / Monday, March 11, 2019

Keynote speaker Lisa Chamberlain poses with first-place winners Abigail Goyette and Suvin Sundararajan, both of Westfield High School.  NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Students from around the region displayed the results of some three dozen experiments Friday at the 13th annual Western Massachusetts Region 1 High School Science & Engineering Fair.    Displays ranging from wall-climbing robots to talking to plants to red dye in sports drinks to coral bleaching were set up on the Amsler Campus Center at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, offering a chance for students to explain their projects and move on to the annual state fair.    An item on reef

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