BERKSHIRE COUNTY

Coverage of Berkshire County, Massachusetts.

Decades Later, Greylock Glen Project Coming Together In Berkshires

Jul 14, 2021
A scene from the Greylock Glen trail system.
Department of Conservation and Recreation / State of Massachusetts

The headlines in the Sept. 17, 1974 edition of the Berkshire Eagle brought news of a delay in the Greylock Glen project in Adams, Massachusetts. The timeline, according to Sen. Adam Hinds, had been pushed back two years to 1976.

The floor of a Mohican house from the 1600s or even older. It was found during an archaeological dig in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.
Trevor Totman / Courtesy Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians

A goal of two archaeological digs conducted this summer by the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians is to find evidence from the 1700s, when the tribe lived in a Christian community with white colonists. But the first of the digs in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, has turned up artifacts and other features that could be much older.

A pre-pandemic scene in the lobby of Amherst Cinema in Amherst, Massachusetts.
Jerrey Roberts / Daily Hampshire Gazette / gazettenet.com

Now free of government-mandated COVID-19 restrictions, most movie theaters in New England have reopened in full. But after months of streaming movies and selling tickets in a limited capacity, several area arthouse cinemas are choosing to stay half-empty.

A drawing shows the site of a meetinghouse built in 1739 in Stockbridge, Massachusetts. The area is the focus of an archaeological dig in summer 2021.
Indian Proprietor Book / Stockbridge Town Clerk's Office

The Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican community is conducting two archaeological digs in western Massachusetts this summer.

A road on the edge of the Allendale neighborhood in Pittsfield, Mass., leads to a PCB disposal site used during the first phase of the clean up of the Housatonic River, in a file photo.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health is launching a study to determine cancer incidence in five cities and towns on the Housatonic River.

The Ted Shawn Theatre, named after the founder of Jacob's Pillow in Becket, Massachusetts.
Courtesy Jacob's Pillow

Jacob’s Pillow, the long-running dance festival in Becket, Massachusetts, has had a lot thrown at it this past year. The COVID-19 pandemic shut the venue down in 2020 for the first time in almost 90 years. Then last November, a fire gutted one of its dance theaters.

Interior of St. Michael's Cathedral in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Farragutful / Creative Commons

Updated at 4:09 p.m. 

The Catholic Diocese of Springfield, Massachusetts, has expanded a list of clergy and lay employees credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor while serving in the diocese. Some of the findings date back decades, as the diocese has expanded its criteria for disclosure.

With Massachusetts poised for reopening over the weekend, what does it mean for small businesses, those in the Arts, and for colleges that have had to adjust their commencement and fall enrollment plans?

Dara Kennedy and Maya Shwayder will talk with Jonathan Butler, CEO of Ecomonic Development Organization 1Berkshire on the region's strategy for reopening.

Can your boss force you to come back to work? Can they require you to receive the COVID vaccine? Springfield employment lawyer Meaghan Murphy has answers.

Conductor Keith Lockhart leads the Boston Pops at Tanglewood in 2018, when crowds were not a threat to public health.
Hillary Scott / BSO Press Office

People are dreaming of a less sequestered summer, and with COVID-19 restrictions easing, the Berkshires will be a destination for many.

Business owners count on tourists coming to this relatively small region, rich in live music, theater and museums. For them, last summer was brutal. This year, it could almost feel like the old days.

Berkshire Superior Court in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
File photo / Masslive / Masslive.com

Shortly after taking office, Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington announced a policy shift. Prosecutors would stop requesting bail in most nonviolent cases. Now, a couple of years later, only a few defendants are held on bail. But there’s been a sharp increase in the use of another legal maneuver to keep people behind bars before trial.

Fire crews from 19 departments in Massachusetts and Vermont have assisted in fighting an 800-acre fire in northern Berkshire County.
Facebook / Savoy Fire Rescue

Updated at 5:33 p.m. 

A 964-acre brush fire in western Massachusetts is now 90% contained, according to the state.

A consumption advisory posted on the Housatonic River in Massachusetts in a file photo.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

General Electric and the EPA have responded to an appeal of the agency's plan to clean up the rest of the Housatonic River.

Officials across the country closed many outdoor basketball courts due to COVID-19 concerns.
Guettarda / Creative Commons

Springfield, Massachusetts, officials continue to field suggestions on reopening many of the city's basketball courts. They were closed at the beginning of the pandemic last year to help mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

A view of MASS MoCA in downtown North Adams, Massachusetts.
Shannon Young / The Republican / masslive.com

Employees at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams have voted overwhelmingly to unionize.

At Berkshire Vaccination Site, Further Reopening Not Top-Of-Mind For Gov. Baker

Apr 22, 2021
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito look on as state Sen. Adam Hinds receives his first dose of COVID-19 vaccine Thursday at the Berkshire Community College vaccination site in Pittsfield.
Stephanie Zollshan / The Berkshire Eagle / Pool / State House News Service

With states around Massachusetts beginning to loosen some of their personal and economic COVID-19 restrictions, Gov. Charlie Baker said Thursday that the state's vaccination program remains his top priority. But he said he'll likely have more to say about reopening by the end of the month.

The Pittsfield, Massachusetts, School Committee meets April 14, 2021, on Zoom, to select a new superintendent.
Screen shot / Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

A Pittsfield, Massachusetts, school committee member resigned during a meeting Wednesday night when the committee cast their votes on candidates for a new superintendent. Dennis Powell, who is also the president of the Berkshire County chapter of the NAACP, said his voice is not being heard.

Josh Vallieres, 21, of North Adams, Massachusetts, is running for mayor.
Paula Evans / courtesy Josh Vallieres

A North Adams, Massachusetts, college student who grew up in the city has taken out nomination papers to run for mayor.

A view of MASS MoCA in downtown North Adams, Massachusetts.
Shannon Young / The Republican / masslive.com

About 100 eligible employees at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams can now begin to cast mail-in ballots, voting on whether to form a union.

Nurses talk to a patient at the COVID-19 mass vaccination site at Eastfield Mall in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican / masslive.com

New numbers from the state show Hampden County now trails all other Massachusetts counties in the percentage of residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

A lawn sign in Lee, Massachusetts, designed by Reed Anderson of Great Barrington, calls for no local dumps for PCB waste from General Electric.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

The federal government’s plan to clean up toxic PCBs from the Housatonic River faces a new legal challenge.

A sign inside the Coburn Elementary School in West Springfield, Mass., from a file photo.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

Learning remotely for many students has been tough this year. For English learners, many of whom live in communities with higher COVID-19 rates, it's been even harder. Some educators are calling for skipping the standardized test this year that’s given to multilingual students.

The Boston Symphony Orchestra, which owns and operates Tanglewood in Lenox, Massachusetts, has announced it will hold live in-person concerts this summer, for the first time since COVID-19 shut down arts events and venues worldwide.
BSO Press Office

The Boston Symphony Orchestra, which owns and operates Tanglewood in Lenox, Massachusetts, has announced it will hold live in-person concerts this summer. The BSO hasn't performed a live concert since March 2020, when COVID-19 triggered cancellations of arts events worldwide. 

The great seal of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians, from a gravestone in the Stockbridge Cemetery.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

When Stockbridge, Massachusetts, residents hold their annual Town Meeting this spring, they'll vote on whether to take steps to return centuries-old documents to the indigenous tribe that once helped govern the town.

An archival photo of Conrad Mainwaring coaching at Camp Greylock for Boys in Becket, Massachusetts.
Courtesy of ESPN / via WBUR

Decades-old allegations of assault at a youth summer camp in the Berkshires are at the center of new criminal charges filed against a former Olympian.

A section of the William Stanley Business Park, part of the former General Electric property, in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

The Baker administration announced funding on Tuesday to prepare sites for industrial and commercial development. Nearly two-thirds of the $3,184,000 from MassDevelopment's Site Readiness Program is going to communities in western Massachusetts.

A dose of the Moderna vaccine for COVID-19.
Jesse Costa / WBUR

A spokesperson for Berkshire County's two hospitals said the region's success in COVID-19 vaccination has been all about collaboration.

A view of MASS MoCA in downtown North Adams, Massachusetts.
Shannon Young / The Republican / masslive.com

Updated at 11:43 a.m. on March 9 

Staff at the Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Massachusetts, announced Monday they're taking steps toward forming a union, citing reasons like inequitable working conditions and low salaries.

The race for governor of Massachusetts has begun — even though Election Day is still more than a year and a half away. The incumbent, Republican Charlie Baker, hasn’t said if he’ll seek a third term, but Democrat Ben Downing is already running.

The 39-year-old former state senator, who announced his candidacy in the 2022 gubernatorial race last month, has defied the political odds once before, and is hoping that his early start can help him do it again.

The Housatonic Rest of River Municipal Committee met behind closed doors in Lee, Massachusetts.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

The Massachusetts Attorney General's office says by meeting in closed sessions last year, officials in five Berkshire towns did not violate the open meeting law. But the AG's office did rebuke several of the towns over related issues.

Parts of the Housatonic River are contaminated with PCBs, which the EPA considers a probable carcinogen.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

Two groups are appealing the Environmental Protection Agency's permit to clean up the Housatonic River.

Pages