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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

New 'Dumbo' Left This Mom With Dry Eyes
By Rebecca Dravis,
09:12PM / Friday, April 19, 2019

When I first heard that Disney was making a live-action version of "Dumbo," I was pretty skeptical. After all, the main characters in this movie are animals, so unless Disney was going to venture into the territory of creepy "talking" real-life creatures, how were they going to pull this one off?

They didn't.

First the good news: Disney WAS able to create a story that didn't require creepy talking real-life animals, thank goodness. Instead, they used very cool special effects to create Dumbo and his mother, and the results of that were pretty spectacular. Dumbo, with his awkward-but-somehow-adorable ears and soulful eyes was as lifelike as possible - and he

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@theMarket: Investors Reach for New Highs
By Bill Schmick,
03:10PM / Friday, April 19, 2019
The stock market won't quit. It has been on a tear since the day after Christmas. It feels like it wants to keep climbing. That would be a fairly simple feat at this point, since we are only a percent or so away from regaining those historical highs. What will happen once we get there.?   You may ask why am I so confident that the markets won't just give up the ghost right here, right now? A look under the hood at the underlying sectors that make up the market indices gives me a clue. Let's take the semiconductor sector. Throughout the last year or more, semiconductors, a sub-segment of the technology area of the market, have led stocks higher (and lower) time and time

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Berkshire Money Management Adviser Becomes Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor
10:35AM / Friday, April 19, 2019

DALTON, Mass. — Berkshire Money Management's youngest teammate has recently become a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor.

Nate Tomkiewicz, 22, who began as a BMM intern three years ago, has recently completed a rigorous course program through the College for Financial Planning, which gives him specialized skills to guide retirees through their retirement by identifying the potential roadblocks — passing assets to heirs, navigating the complex world of healthcare, Social Security —  that they may encounter.

Tomkiewicz also be able to help retirees take advantage of opportunities as they move into the next — and arguably the most important — phase

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Colombian-Belgian Choreographer Receives Jacobís Pillow Dance Award
10:25AM / Friday, April 19, 2019

BECKET, Mass. — Internationally sought-after Colombian-Belgian choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa is the recipient of the 2019 Jacob's Pillow Dance Award.

With a career that spans over 15 years, Lopez Ochoa has created more than 90 works for more than 50 major dance companies around the world — bridging different countries, genres and reputations with a fluency that is unmatched. Lopez Ochoa will accept the award as part of Jacob’s Pillow Season Opening Gala on June 15.

Ochoa joins a list of honorees that include Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar, Bill T. Jones, Merce Cunningham, Kyle Abraham, Michelle Dorrance, Camille A. Brown, Liz Lerman and Faye Driscoll, among

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1Berkshire Announces Winner of Esther Quinn Award
10:17AM / Friday, April 19, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — This year's Esther Quinn Award will go to Bernie Klem of Guardian Life Insurance Company of America.

This annual award is given to a member of the Berkshire professional community who is involved in several volunteer efforts and continues to make the Berkshires a better place to live and work.

The award will be given out at the next 1Berkshire Good News Business Salute at The Country Club of Pittsfield on April 24 at 7:30 a.m., sponsored by Berkshire Money Management. Tickets can be reserved online.

Klem serves as marketing associate and chair of the Community Involvement Committee at Guardian. Prior to joining Guardian, Klem held positions with Gargan

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SVHC Offers Free Paid Training for Licensed Nursing Assistants
10:00AM / Friday, April 19, 2019

BENNINGTON, Vt. — Over the past several years, Southwestern Vermont Health Care has trained hundreds of people to become licensed nursing assistants. Many have gone on to rewarding careers in the health system's skilled nursing facilities or in the hospital’s inpatient units.

"This is a great, very cost-effective way to begin a health care career," said Peg Daly, who leads the SVHC Education and Organizational Development Department. "LNAs earn good wages, gain valuable experience, and help others. It can be very satisfying."

The training typically costs as much as $1,400. Those who enter SVHC's program agree to a one-year contract, receive free

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The Independent Investor: The Cost of Rebuilding God's House
By Bill Schmick,
05:04PM / Thursday, April 18, 2019
Sometimes a tragedy can bring people together. In the case of the devastating fire that swept Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral, the world wept. But even before the fire was completely extinguished, the business community was already making plans to rebuild the 850-year-old edifice.   The price tag will likely be in the multibillion-dollar range. A preliminary assessment of the damage thus far includes two-thirds (about 100 meters) of the roof and the destruction of a spire, which the world witnessed on television. At least a 62-foot expanse of stained-glass windows was also severely damaged.   What we don't know as of yet, is how the 800-pipe organ, one of the largest in the

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'After': Of Good Girls and Bad Boys
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
02:57PM / Thursday, April 18, 2019
It's just not fair. The lady preteens and barely teens who attended a showing of "After," presumably to look into the crystal ball and commiserate with future peer, Tessa Young, left it all to me. I was to see what was to be with the gal who embarks on her college career and that first real love.    They were much too busy chattering, texting or running back and forth to either the concession stand or the powder room to pay any attention to Katherine Langford's decent but a tad treacly portrayal of the girl next door turned co-ed. Oh well, I figured, perhaps they read writer Anna Todd's "After" series on Wattpad, whatever that is, and were only in

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MassWildlife Offers Tips for Dealing With Aggressive Turkeys
Staff Reports,
11:53AM / Thursday, April 18, 2019
BOSTON — The state Division of Fisheries and Wildlife is offering some tips for dealing with aggressive wild turkeys.    A woman in Cambridge was recently injured when a flock of turkeys began pecking at her legs; aggressive turkeys have also been reported and recorded in in Foxboro and Brookline.    There's more room for humans and turkeys to co-exist in the Berkshires but residents should still be aware of turkey behavior if there's an encounter.    MassWildlife says:   March through May is breeding season for wild turkeys and as a result, there is an increase in turkey activity all across the commonwealth. Some turkeys may be seen acting

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MCLA Picks Winners of Third Entrepreneurship Challenge
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
02:33AM / Thursday, April 18, 2019

The Whet Towel was the winning idea in this year's challenge.  NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — There were three finalists for the third annual Innovation and Entrepreneurial Challenge on Wednesday night. They were different yet had one thing in common: being eco-friendly or at least all-natural.    But it was the pitch about making disposal razors last longer that stood out for the judges and deemed worthy of the $10,000 prize.    Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts students Nicholas Strezynski and Owen Fitzgerald came up with towel that includes a denim strop designed to extend the life of disposable razors.    "For years, I've been using

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Career Fair Draws 150 Job Seekers to Taconic High School
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
05:50PM / Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Attendance at the longstanding annual event tends to ebb and flow based on the labor market trends at the time. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Some 150 or so job seekers made their way to the newly built Taconic High School on Wednesday for 1Berkshire's annual career fair.   The event drew 73 exhibitors to talk about jobs they have available, or services they offer job seekers, including BerkshireJobs.com, an affiliate of iBerkshires.   According to Benjamin Lamb, economic development director for 1Berkshires, it is the most exhibitors the organization has had at the annual fair.   "There are a lot of manufacturing jobs out there right now. It is a growing sector.

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Berkshires Beat: Humane Society Hosts Annual Humane Race
12:28PM / Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Animal action

Berkshire Humane Society's 17th annual Humane Race – a timed 5K run and 1-mile fun walk benefitting homeless animals – will be hosted for the second year by the city of North Adams on Saturday, April 27. Participants are invited to run and walk with or without a leashed canine companion. Proceeds benefit Berkshire Humane Society and the homeless animals of the Berkshires. The race will be timed by Berkshire Running Center.

BHS Humane Heroes will volunteer at the event, hosting a canine snack station with homemade pupsicles and doggy ice cream. The Humane Hero program teaches children about animals and organizes group volunteer activities at the shelter and

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