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Berkshires Beat: McCann Brings Home Medals, Bus Changes, Boats and Photos Sought
11:07AM / Tuesday, July 12, 2016
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Excellent skills: McCann Technical School has announced the medalists of the National SkillsUSA Championship held in Louisville, Ky., during the week of June 20-24. More than 6,000 outstanding career and technical education students, all state gold winners, competed hands-on in 100 different trade, technical and leadership fields.

The following students were awarded gold medals at the state competition and competed at the National Level: Elizabeth Church, Dental Assisting; Emily Shanley, Technical Computer; Maria Deblois, Customer Service; and Charlie Bohl III, Noah Curran and Tanner Parrino, Automated Manufacturing Technology.

More than 2,500 participants competed at the state level in more than 71 competitions. McCann Tech earned eight gold, 17 silver and six bronze medals at the Massachusetts statewide competition.

The Automated Manufacturing Technology team of Charlie Bohl III, Noah Curran and Tanner Parrino won silver medals at the National Competition.

McCann was also represented by two voting delegates: Lauren DeRose and Jordan Reinhardt. McCann Tech senior Samantha Dorwin helped preside over the National Conference serving as the National officer, Region 1 Vice President.

New bus operator: As of July 1, the operator for BRTA's paratransit program has changed. Customers using the familiar purple and white vehicles will now call 413-499-2782, ext. 3, to schedule their next ride.

Paratransit Management of Berkshire, a subsidiary of First Transit, is the company succeeding County Ambulance for both ADA and premium transportation. The PMB call center is open Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. There is a voice messaging system to allow customers the option to leave a detailed message regarding their trip when all the call center staff are busy or when the office is closed. Premium ticket users can inquire about their scheduled vehicle location until 9 p.m.

The paratransit program will operate in a similar fashion where eligible customers can schedule their transportation needs.  A purple and white vehicle will provide a shared ride to or from their desired destination. Fares for the paratransit program remain the same under the new operator PMB.

Row your boats: Attention, all boaters! The second annual Pontoosuc Flotilla will leave the shore on Saturday, July 30, at 1:30 p.m. Lineup will begin near Matt Reilly's Pub on Pontoosuc Lake at 12:45 p.m. and set off at 1:30. All boats except sail boats are eligible to enter.

Entrants are encouraged to decorate their boats to compete for three main cash prizes and major bragging rights. Categories are Most Colorful, Most Creative/Original, and Best Use of Pontoosuc Lake Theme. All entrants will receive a certificate and some swag. Non-returnable entry fee is $10.

Last year, 17 boats entered the Flotilla, which was part of Lanesborough's 250th Anniversary Celebration. This year, organizers are hoping for even more entries.

Entrants can sign up three ways:

1. Download entry form.

2. Pick up entry form at U-Drive Boat Rental, Matt Reilly’s Pub, Pontoosuc Package Store, Reynolds Team Sales (Allendale), and Wheeler’s Market.

3. Email and request form.

The Pontoosuc Flotilla is sponsored by Friends of Pontoosuc, and Presenting Sponsor U-Drive Rent-A-Boat; Major Sponsors The Lake House of the Berkshires and Pittsfield Pipers; and Supporting Sponsors Baker's Golf Center, Matt Reilly's Pub, Pontoosuc Package Store, and Reynolds Teams Sales.

Read the Zine: The Zine, Berkshire Community College’s (BCC) Journal of literary and visual arts, is now available online.

The student-driven publication, which is produced each spring, features creative pieces including: short fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, visual art, script and literary criticism.

Juliana Spallholz, assistant professor of English, serves as advisor. The Editors-in-Chief for the 2016 Journal are Nikki Hall and Daniel Raferty.

The Zine is supported by the BCC Foundation and the Office of Student Life.


Photos sought: A photo taken in the Putnam Memorial Hospital nursery on the day your father was born.  A coat hanger printed with the hospital’s name. Nothing communicates history like photos and objects from the time. As Southwestern Vermont Health Care prepares to celebrate its Centennial Anniversary, the art and archives department is seeking photographs and other memorabilia to document the health system’s history.

The cornerstone of the then Putnam Memorial Hospital was laid on August 16, 1916. It accepted its first patient on June 10, 1918.  Since that time, the organization has changed its name twice: to Putnam Memorial Health Corporation in 1984 and then to Southwestern Vermont Health Care in 2000.

If you have hospital- or community-related photos or other items to contribute temporarily or to donate, contact Sarah Lewis at to have them cataloged for potential inclusion in an exhibit or publication.


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