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10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival Returns in February
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
04:00AM / Friday, January 17, 2020
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The expanded 9th annual 10X10 Upstreet Arts Festival returns to cure those winter blues this February with a new emphasis on outdoor recreation.   Mayor Linda Tyer announced this year's festival events Thursday at Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary along side Parks and Open Spaces Manager James McGrath, Director of Cultural Development Jen Glockner, and Becky Cushing of Mass Audubon as a way to recommit to the city's efforts to capitalize on its recreational economy.    "The art festival has amazing events and programs that give us something to look forward to in the winter months," Tyer said. "This year's

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Youth Soccer Officials Course Offered
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03:42PM / Monday, January 13, 2020
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LENOX, Mass. -- The Massachusetts State Referee Committee will offer a new soccer referee course in our area for anyone interested in becoming a USSF Soccer Official.   The Berkshire County Youth Soccer League will provide a stipend toward the new offical's kit of $50, once a new official completes 10 games in a calendar year. The referee is responsible for submitting their game count.    The course will be offered Sunday, Jan.  19, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Hampton Inn, 445 Pittsfield Road, Lenox.   To register, go to https://www.massref.net/Central/courseofferings.cfm, click on the class for Lenox.   Pre-payment of $115 made out to MSRC is required to

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Boston Bruins Alumni Prevail Over Northern Berkshire Alums
By Rick Duteau, iBerkshires Sports
10:57PM / Saturday, January 11, 2020
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass — Justin Kruszyna began skating again after 16 years off the ice when his two young sons first started playing hockey two years ago. So it was only fitting that sons Tyler and Bradley were there on Saturday afternoon to watch their dad play with the rest of the Northern Berkshire Youth Hockey League Alumni against the Boston Bruins Alumni.   The Kruszyna family is just one example of all the magic that was created at Peter W. Foote Vietnam Veterans Memorial Skating Rink on Saturday, as a packed house enjoyed a friendly battle between their local hockey heroes and notorious members of the Boston Bruins Alumni. Things were close at the break, before the Bruins

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MIAA Proposal Would Eliminate Sectional Titles, Create Statewide Tourneys
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
05:28PM / Thursday, January 09, 2020
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  FRANKLIN, Mass. — The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association this winter will be asked to decide whether to implement a statewide playoff system for most sports, abandoning the current structure of four sectional tournaments producing semifinalists who play for a state title.   On Thursday, four members of the MIAA's Tournament Management Committee held an open press conference call (in which iBerkshires participated) at the association's office to explain the system, which the committee says is the best way to address two concerns the state hears from stakeholders: schools forced to play larger teams in sectional tournaments and the

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Bay State Games Recognizes 'Berkshire Heroes'
01:25AM / Monday, January 06, 2020
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – Bay State Games presented the Berkshire Hero Award on Saturday evening to two staunch supporters of the annual Winter Games.   The 2020 recipients are Nate Cariddi from Williams College and Sue Briggs of the Williamstown Chamber of Commerce. The two recipients received their awards during the Bay State Skate Figure Skating Show, which took place at the college's Lansing Chapman Rink on Saturday.    Nate Cariddi is the groundskeeper lead at Williams with responsibilities including the ice rink. Cariddi has served as an important contact between the Bay State Games and the college. He and his crew also put in a lot of extra work and care during

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Q&A: Williamstown's Benzinger Plays in Friday Bowl
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires Staff
03:56AM / Tuesday, December 24, 2019
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — When Jake Benzinger left Williamstown to go to Wake Forest University in the fall of 2015, the Demon Deacons' football program had won 12 games in the last three seasons and had not gone to a bowl game since 2011.   This week, Benzinger comes north with his teammates to compete in Friday's Pinstripe Bowl in New York City, where they will take on Michigan State University at Yankee Stadium on Friday afternoon.   He is one of two Berkshire County products playing in bowls this week. On Monday afternoon, Pittsfield's Jake Hescock, a red-shirt junior tight end at Central Florida, was in Tampa to help the 9-3 Knights take on Marshall in

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Berkshire Family YMCA Appoints New CEO
02:06PM / Tuesday, December 03, 2019
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Family YMCA's board of directors has appointed Jessica Rumlow as CEO and executive director for the organization.

Rumlow was appointed interim CEO and executive director in May after Randy Kinnas, the nonprofit's CEO for the last 19 years, moved on as director of Member Advancement for the Alliance of Massachusetts YMCAs.

"We're thrilled to work with Jess as the Y's new leader. Transition in leadership can pose several challenges; however, this has been seamless given her vast Y experience and understanding of the needs of the Berkshire County community," said Peter Moore, board president of the Berkshire Family YMCA.

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Hescock, Benzinger Look Ahead to Bowl Bids
iBerkshires.com Sports,
05:38AM / Monday, December 02, 2019
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Winter has -- prematurely -- arrived back home in the Berkshires, but for at least two county alumni, their fall seasons are continuing.   Wake Forest senior Jake Benzinger of Williamstown and Central Florida junior Jake Hescock of Pittsfield each has helped his college football team qualify for a bowl game.   Hescock, a former Taconic High student-athlete who finished his secondary education at Connecticut's Salisbury School, is a junior at UCF.   This fall, the tight end has nine catches for 87 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The UCF Knights are 9-3 and carry a two-game winning streak into the post-season.   Benzinger and the Demon Deacons dropped a heartbreaker in

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Berkshire Lax Team Competes in Regional Showcase
Community submission,
10:04AM / Tuesday, November 19, 2019
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EAST LONGMEADOW, Mass. -- The Berkshire Lax Club played in the New England Showcase on Sunday at East Longmeadow High School.   After dropping the opening game, 5-1, to Lax Plus (Connecticut), Berkshire bounced back to beat Rev Lax (Boston), 8-3, and Mainiax (Maine), 6-5.   Sierra Murray (6 goals), Hannah Bowlby (4 goals), and Sarah Polumbo (4 goals) led the way on offense.   Emily Figiela, Maya Creamer, and Ainsley Able gave strong defensive efforts throughout the tournament, and Sydney Smith anchored the team in goal.      

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Entry Level Soccer Official Class Offered
10:45AM / Tuesday, November 05, 2019
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LENOX, Mass. -- The U.S. Soccer entry-level (Grade 8) Grassroots Referee course will be offered in Berkshire County in January.   The course is led by a U.S. Soccer-certified instructor and will include three parts. Students are required to complete the following:   1. Online Study Modules (approximately 4-6 hours work). To allow for verification, the modules must be completed a minimum 72 hours before classroom attendance.   2. Eight hours classroom attendance.   3. A test on the Laws of the Game - completed in the classroom, with a passing grade of 80 percent.   All three parts must be completed to certify   Note that U.S.-Soccer affiliated leagues can only

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