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News and events in North Adams, Mass.

Two Arraigned on Drug Possession Charges in North Adams
01:34PM / Tuesday, March 26, 2024
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Two people were arraigned in Northern Berkshire District Court on Monday in connection to alleged trespassing and trafficking cocaine and crack cocaine from a March 22 incident.    Kayla Stojda, 31, address unknown, and Joseph Mathews, 25, of Adams were both charged with trafficking in cocaine, 200 grams or more, and trespassing after notice. 

The commonwealth requested Stojda be held on $100,000 bail. The court imposed $2,500 bail. Additionally Stojda had bail recorded on underlying cases. 

The court imposed $200,000 bail without prejudice for Matthews, who had bail revoked on underlying trafficking

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When should you take Social Security?
12:03PM / Tuesday, March 26, 2024
One of your important sources of retirement income will likely be Social Security — but when should you start taking it?   You can start collecting Social Security benefits at 62, but your checks will be considerably bigger if you wait until your full retirement age, which is likely between 66 and 67. You could even wait until you're 70, at which point the payments will max out, except for yearly cost-of-living adjustments. But if you need the money, you need the money, even if you're just 62 or any age before full retirement age.   However, if you have adequate financial resources to meet your monthly needs, whether through earned income, your investment portfolio

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North Adams Schools Closing in on Budget Gap
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
05:39AM / Tuesday, March 26, 2024
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The School Committee will likely dip into its school choice account to close a revenue gap for fiscal 2025.   The Finance and Facilities subcommittee was presented with a tentative budget scenario on Monday morning that would pull nearly $600,000 out of the school choice account and raise the city's portion by $100,000.   "We have been working very diligently to really maintain our priorities with respect to this budgeting process, which has been to maintain a high-quality, student experience and ensuring that they will still have access to things that are currently part of their educational programming, particularly the arts," said

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New Center Believes Hope & Community Can Change Lives
By Kim McMann, iBerkshires correspondent
05:45PM / Monday, March 25, 2024

M. Christine Macbeth, president of the Brien Center, says the new center is a 'source of hope.' NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Nine months after its conception, recovery coach Julian Ramos cut the ribbon Friday on the new Have Hope Peer Recovery Center.   The center at 37 Main St. launched Monday with a full calendar of scheduled activities.   "We all see this new center as a source of hope. Hope in and of itself is incredibly important in one's life," said M. Christine Macbeth, president and CEO of the Brien Center at Friday's gathering. "I'm so thrilled that it's part of the name. For years my computer screen used to say 'Keep hope

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ArtWeek Berkshires 2024 Welcoming Submissions
04:00PM / Monday, March 25, 2024

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — ArtWeek Berkshires, a county-wide collaboration, will take place May 17-27.

The ArtWeek committee posted its call for artists.  The non-juried event is free to all Berkshire County individuals, organizations, and businesses interested in showcasing creative work. Submissions from actors, cartoonists, crafters, dancers, designers, filmmakers, illustrators, mimes, multimedia artists, musicians, performance artists, poets, puppeteers, theater artists, visual artists, writers – and more – are welcome. 

The event will feature open studios, gallery talks, theater, performances, workshops, and more interactive experiences.

ArtWeek

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North Adams Seeks Federal Grant to Repair Walnut Street Retaining Wall
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
02:56PM / Monday, March 25, 2024

Residents raise concerns about flooding and road safety at the meeting on March 11.  NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city is planning a $2 million repair to the more than century-old collapsing Walnut Street retaining wall.    "Don't think that we're not doing anything because we've done quite a bit of work internally," Mayor Jennifer Macksey told about two dozen residents in person and online recently during a meeting at City Hall. "You're not forgotten. So the takeaway from tonight is you're not forgotten."   Neighbors have complained for years about the deterioration of the road above the wall and the supporting

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NBUW Urges Organizations to Submit Food and Shelter Program Applications
10:51AM / Monday, March 25, 2024
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Emergency Food and Shelter Program National Board has awarded Berkshire County $46,359 in Phase 41 (FY23) Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) assistance funding.   Northern Berkshire United Way, local administrator of the program, is urging qualifying organizations located throughout Berkshire County to submit an application for supplemental emergency food and shelter. Learn more and access the application at https://www.nbunitedway.org/emergencyfoodandshelterprogram.   Local organizations chosen to receive funds must be private voluntary nonprofits (with a voluntary board) or units of government; have an accounting system; practice non-

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Veteran Spotlight: Army Sgt. Louis Vairo
By Wayne Soares, Special to iBerkshires
05:38PM / Sunday, March 24, 2024
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Louis Vairo served his country in the Army from 1966 to 1968, achieving the rank of sergeant, specialist E5.   Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., he graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School and was drafted in 1966.    "I remember my mother telling me that 'everyone is so proud of you. Your father served in WWII and you had family that served in WWII and Korea. You should feel very proud to serve your country. We're praying for you — remember, God only takes the good,'" he said with a laugh.   He took the train from Grand Central Station to Washington, D.C., changed trains in Fort Jackson, S.C., then flew on a prop plane

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Nine Inducted into County Girls Basketball Hall of Fame
By Stephen Dravis, iBerkshires.com Sports
06:02PM / Saturday, March 23, 2024
PITTSFIELD, Mass. – The Berkshire County High School Girls Basketball Hall of Fame Saturday welcomed nine new members, including seven women who were lauded for their many successes on the hardwood.   At least one also was recognized for her failures.   “I think the thing I’m proudest of is not so much what she did on the court, but how she was able to put herself in a position to fail time and time again,” Frank Field said in his remarks about his daughter, 2017 Hoosac Valley High School graduate Fallon Field. “That’s not easy for kids to do. Those who do it can really excel.   “No matter what the role was … whether it was the

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Snow/Sleet Starts Off Weekend
06:38PM / Friday, March 22, 2024
It may be spring but winter isn't quite done with us. This week's drop in temperatures and flurries are being followed by a more significant storm that could drop 2 to 6 inches over the region this weekend.    A winter weather advisory is in effect beginning at 11 p.m. on Friday through 11 p.m. Saturday for Berkshire County, Southern Vermont and eastern New York.    The National Weather Service in Albany, N.Y., says be prepared for gusty winds and icy roads on the morrow as snow turns to freezing rain on Saturday.    These periods of rain and sleet will turn back to snow by Saturday evening and snowfall rates may get close to one inch per hour late

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Weekend Outlook: ThunderFest Returns Sunday
By Sabrina Damms, iBerkshires Staff
12:24PM / Friday, March 22, 2024
There are a variety of events in Berkshire County this weekend including Thunderfest, Easter Bunny Train Rides, live music, and more.    Editor's Pick   ThunderFest  Adams Visitor Center Sunday from noon to 5 p.m.   The annual outdoor festival celebrating the historic Thunderbolt Trail and Race returns bringing live music, a campfire and marshmallows, local craft beer and wine, food, outdoor recreation, craft exhibitors, and more. (Note the event has been moved to Sunday because of weather.)   The event is fun for the whole family, including leashed pets. Admission is free. More information here.    Multiple Days    Easter Bunny Hop

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NAPS Holds Forum on School Closure, New Grade Configuration
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
05:37AM / Friday, March 22, 2024
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Superintendent Barbara Malkas answered questions and corrected misinformation in a community forum regarding the closing of Greylock Elementary School.   Malkas took the first half hour of the forum Wednesday to present some facts about the budget and financial realities moving the district toward closing Greylock.   "I want to start by saying no superintendent, no school committee members, nobody wants to be in this position," she said in Brayton Elementary's Welcome Center. "This is not something we elect to do, it is something we have to do because we need to be financially responsible to our community."   Malkas said the

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