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News and events in South Berkshire, Mass.

Neal Talks Health Care In Recent Berkshire Visit
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
04:16PM / Sunday, July 09, 2017

Neal spent time discussing various issues, though health care was the top, with reporters after announcing a grant for Fairview Hospital on Thursday. GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — A single payer health care policy has been picking up steam and support among Democrats locally and nationally.    It had been a key part of Bernie Sander's presidential platform. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth recently called for such a program to be considered. And Massachusetts state legislatures have put forth a bill to study on moving to one.   But U.S. Rep. Richard Neal is somewhat more reserved about bringing such a program to the federal level. He says he'd like to see Massachusetts

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Berkshire Force 14U Squad Falls at Regional
07:30PM / Saturday, July 08, 2017
BARRINGTON, N.H. -- The Berkshire Force 14-and-under softball fell behind early and couldn't come back in an 11-1 loss to Barrington Blaze on Saturday at the Babe Ruth New England Regional.   Jordyn Codding, Lexi Sondrini, Addison Lyon, and Jordyn Lummus each had one hit for the Force.   Barrington collected 13 hits.

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Health Care Dominates Warren's Town Hall in Pittsfield
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
03:00PM / Saturday, July 08, 2017

Warren was greeted with cheers at Saturday's packed town hall meeting at BCC. PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The most pressing issue before U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren right now is the proposed federal health care bill.   And that's what she spent most of her time discussing with more than 800 people who attended her town hall at Berkshire Community College on Saturday.   The Democrat has been holding town hall meetings throughout the state, using most of the time to answer questions posed by the audience. She opened with remarks about the health care bill, and fielded numerous questions related to it.   "I think health care shows us what is going on in

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@themarket: Global Interest Rates Rise, Global Stocks Fall
By Bill Schmick,
11:05AM / Saturday, July 08, 2017
It is something we really haven't seen in quite some time. Back in the day, before the financial crisis, interest rates and stocks most often moved in opposite directions. This week investors got a taste of what the future might hold.   U.S Treasury yields on the 10-year note (the benchmark average) ticked up to 2.39 percent at one point. Across the pond, the German Bund (their benchmark) rose .5 percent. Those were big moves in the debt world. Why are interest rates on the rise all of a sudden after years of declines?   Some would say it just had to happen. Global central bank policy has just been too loose for too long. I don't necessarily agree with that view, but at

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Berkshire Force 14U Squad Advances at Regional
08:10PM / Friday, July 07, 2017
BARRINGTON, N.H. -- A big defensive play by Molly Sherman Friday sparked the Berkshire Force 14-and-under softball team to a 9-5 win in bracket play at the Babe Ruth New England Regionals.   Sherman’s shoestring catch in left field ended a three-run rally in the top of the fourth.   The Force then took the lead for good in the bottom of the frame with five runs of its own.   Kirstyn Carrigan and Lexi Sondrini each had two hits for the Force.   Carrigan also combined with Sophia-Marie Groves to strike out five in the circle.

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Lear RBI Lifts Thunder in Ninth at Regional
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
04:19PM / Friday, July 07, 2017
PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- Eight was not enough to silence the Thunder on Friday.   The Greylock Thunder 16-and-under Babe Ruth Softball team bounced back from two demoralizing eight-run innings to win two games over the Berkshire Force in the New England Regionals at the Doyle Complex.   In the morning, the Adams-based Thunder rallied after falling behind, 8-1, in the first inning, to earn a 9-8 to wrap up pool play in the four-team tournament.   In the afternoon, the Thunder squandered an 8-0 lead when the Force rallied for eight in the top of the seventh. Then Greylock gutted out a 9-8 win on Abby Lear's RBI single in the bottom of the ninth to advance in the winners'

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Berkshire 12U Cal Ripken Team Reaches Western Mass Semi-Final
Community submission,
04:08PM / Friday, July 07, 2017
TURNERS FALLS, Mass. -- The Berkshire All-Stars 12-and-under Cal Ripken Baseball League team last weekend advanced to the semi-finals of the Western Massachusetts State Tournament.   The Berkshire team used a 3-1 record to advance to the semis, where it led early before dropping an 18-7 decision to Ayer-Shirley.   In Berkshire's first game, Cliff Flyn and Seamus Barnes combined to strike out seven in a four-inning, 11-0 win over Narragansett.   Dylan Ely had a double and a home run, and Flynn had a two-run double. Jackson Shelsy added a single, a double an RBI.   Berkshire dropped its second game of pool play, 10-5, to Ayer-Shirley despite home runs from Ely and

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The Independent Investor: The Market's Half-Time Report
By Bill Schmick,
12:56PM / Friday, July 07, 2017
Financial markets worldwide ended the first six months of the year much better off than they started. Here in the U.S., the Dow and the S&P 500 Indexes both gained 8 percent, while NASDAQ delivered 15 percent.   The Russell 2000, the small cap index, underperformed (up 4 percent) and the Transports gained 5 percent. All-in-all, it paid to be in large-cap, especially the large cap growth sector for the first half. At the same time, the Volatility Index continued to make new lows, despite the fact that at least half the investing population was/is worried and fearful of our new president's agenda.   All of the top 20 economies around the world are growing this year. That

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Pittsfield Superintendent to Speak on Schools as Sanctuaries
11:28AM / Friday, July 07, 2017
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Leadership Academy at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts on Saturday, July 8, welcomes Pittsfield Public Schools Superintendent Jason McCandless, who will speak on the topic of schools as sanctuaries, from 1:15 to 3:15 p.m. in Murdock Hall.   The event is free and open to the public.   In his presentation, McCandless will look at the many types of "at-risk" students, the state of at-risk students in the Commonwealth, what Pittsfield Public Schools have done to become more "sanctu-arial," and the special care that immigrant and refugee children require.   According to McCandless, because of current affairs, rhetoric and

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Classical Beat: Great Music Abounds at Tanglewood, Taconic & Tannery Pond
By Stephen Dankner, iBerkshires Columnist
09:16AM / Friday, July 07, 2017

Tanglewood, the nation's largest and most prestigious summer music presenter, officially opens its 77th classical festival season. Here's a rundown of the concerts and performers from July 5-11.

As if that's not enough, don't miss out on the brilliant offerings at Taconic Music and Tannery Pond – two additional stellar venues in Manchester, VT. and New Lebanon, NY.

Why go? Great performers interpret iconic music from across historical eras – much of it beloved favorites of audiences worldwide. Read below for the details.

Tanglewood

• Wednesday, July 5, 8 p.m. in Ozawa Hall: The Cleveland-based Baroque chamber orchestra Apollo's Fire will present a

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Neal Delivers 100K Grant To Help Fairview Hospital
By Andy McKeever, iBerkshires Staff
06:00PM / Thursday, July 06, 2017

Neal announced the $98,871 grant at the hospital on Thursday.

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Since 2010, 80 rural hospitals have closed.

Another 363 are struggling to keep the doors open, according to Fairview Hospital President Eugene Dellea.

The Berkshires know that well. It has only been a few years since the former North Adams Regional Hospital closed up.   On the federal level, massive changes to healthcare delivery could be looming, making hospitals unsure of how to plan for the future.   "We are fortunate here at Fairview. We have the support of a huge health system in Berkshire Health Systems. We have the availability of a lot of resources that other small

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What Can Investors Learn from the All Stars?
Submitted by Edward Jones,
11:49AM / Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Next week, the 2017 Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be held in Marlins Park in Miami. If you're a baseball fan, you may tune in to admire the skills and grace of the players. And if you're an investor, you can learn some valuable lessons from the All Stars.

* Alertness: Most of us can only dream of having the outstanding reflexes of major league ballplayers. But we can develop a similar trait: alertness. Just as a ballplayer who wants to steal a base needs to be alert to the pitcher’s delivery and the strength of the catcher’s throwing arm, you should be vigilant about investment opportunities and the potential need to make changes to your portfolio.

For

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