16.09.2022 Views

Pittsfield Community Guidebook

Pittsfield Community Guidebook

Pittsfield Community Guidebook

SHOW MORE
SHOW LESS

Create successful ePaper yourself

Turn your PDF publications into a flip-book with our unique Google optimized e-Paper software.

PITTSFIELD • 2022-2023<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 1


CRUST<br />

The Art of Pizza<br />

Handcrafted Dough Homemade Sauces<br />

The Finest Toppings<br />

Vegan Friendly, Gluten & Dairy Free Options<br />

A Truly Unique Pizza Experience<br />

Come Taste The Delicious Difference!<br />

505 East Street • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> • 413.464.7977<br />

@crustpz.com<br />

MARY COURTNEY DARREN LEE THOMAS HAMEL<br />

Serving the Berkshires for more than 25 years<br />

Committed to providing the highest quality legal services<br />

possible through attentive, creative and aggressive<br />

application of the law to our clients’ practical needs.<br />

• Litigation<br />

• Business<br />

• Personal Injury<br />

• Divorce<br />

• Family Law<br />

• Employment Law<br />

• Social Security<br />

• Guardianship/Conservatorship<br />

• Estate Planning - Probate - Tax Proceedings<br />

• Real Estate<br />

• Banking<br />

• Creditors’ Rights & Bankruptcy<br />

31 Wendell Ave | <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201 | 413.443.4445<br />

We offer discounts every-day for Veterans & Active-Duty Personnel<br />

2 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 3


Welcome<br />

to <strong>Pittsfield</strong><br />

As mayor of the city of <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, I am<br />

thrilled to extend warm greetings and a<br />

hearty welcome.<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, the capital seat of Berkshire<br />

County, is the proud home to 44,000 residents.<br />

Our thriving arts and culture community<br />

features an array of museums, performance<br />

centers, theatres, galleries and<br />

exhibits that attest to the vibrant history<br />

and creativity in our city.<br />

Additionally, our downtown has an amazing<br />

movie theater that offers an unrivaled<br />

viewing experience. On North Street is also<br />

where you’ll find an array of eateries and<br />

restaurants that reflect rich and diverse<br />

backgrounds.<br />

While we’re a city with a distinctive urban<br />

flair, we also have spectacular and easily<br />

accessible natural resources, ranging from<br />

the <strong>Pittsfield</strong> State Forest to Bousquet<br />

Mountain, that allow for a host of outdoor<br />

recreation enjoyment.<br />

I encourage you to explore and learn more<br />

about our city. For more information,<br />

please visit cityofpittsfield.org.<br />

Again, welcome!<br />

Mayor Linda M. Tyer<br />

TABLE OF CONTENTS<br />

FEDERAL ......................................................... 7<br />

SENATORS ...................................................... 7<br />

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES .................... 8<br />

STATE ............................................................... 8<br />

CITY GOVERNMENT .............................. 10-11<br />

ELECTED OFFICIALS ................................... 12<br />

PITTSFIELD SCHOOL COMMITTEE ........... 12<br />

BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS ............. 14-15<br />

SCHOOLS ...................................................... 16<br />

ACTIVITIES AND ATTRACTIONS ............... 16<br />

TENNIS COURTS .......................................... 18<br />

RECREATION ................................................ 18<br />

PUBLIC GOLF COURSES .............................. 18<br />

STATE PARKS ................................................ 18<br />

ORGANIZATIONS ........................................ 19<br />

FIRE COMPANIES......................................... 20<br />

A publication of<br />

Capital Region Independent Media<br />

11 Augusta Court, Clifton Park, NY 12065 • (518) 859-6353<br />

PRESIDENT: Mark Vinciguerra • PUBLISHER: Warren Dews Jr<br />

EDITORIAL: Melanie Lekocevic<br />

ADVERTISING: Urij Tabuntschikow • DESIGN: Jackie Reese<br />

ON THE COVER:<br />

Clockwise, Berkshire Eagle, Berkshire Black Economic<br />

Council, Berkshire Museum, Barrington Stage Company<br />

and Berkshire Theatre Group.<br />

ST.JOHN’S LODGE #10<br />

COMMITTED TO HELPING OUR<br />

COMMUNITY BECOME<br />

A BETTER PLACE<br />

TO LIVE, WORK AND PLAY<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> • Dalton • Gt. Barrington<br />

Member FDIC & DIF Equal Housing Lender pittsfieldcoop.com<br />

Your Local Waste & Recycling Service Provider<br />

Preserving Our Environment by Giving Resources New Life<br />

800-CASELLA • casella.com • Always Hiring Great People: Text CASELLA to 97211<br />

We believe in making a difference through people!<br />

Upcoming <strong>Community</strong> Events:<br />

Facebook.com/St.Johns10.Mass<br />

4 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 5


FEDERAL<br />

FBI<br />

Western Massachusetts Office<br />

1441 Main Street<br />

Springfield, MA 01103<br />

413-736-0301<br />

Medicare<br />

800-633-4227<br />

Social Security<br />

800-772-1213<br />

IRS<br />

800-829-1040<br />

SENATORS<br />

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren<br />

413-788-2690<br />

1550 Main Street<br />

Suite 406<br />

Springfield, MA 01103<br />

www.warren.senate.gov<br />

U.S. Sen. Edward Markey<br />

413-785-4610<br />

1550 Main Street<br />

Fourth Floor<br />

Springfield, MA 01103<br />

www.markey.senate.gov<br />

ART.<br />

MUSIC.<br />

FAMILY<br />

FUN.<br />

YOU CAN HELP BUILD A STRONGER COMMUNITY<br />

With your support, Berkshire United Way works<br />

toward ensuring:<br />

• Young children are ready to enter kindergarten<br />

• Youth are able to graduate and build college<br />

or career readiness skills<br />

• Families have sufficient income and supports<br />

to provide economic stability<br />

North Adams, Mass. | Tickets & information at massmoca.org<br />

(413) 442-6948 | www.berkshireunitedway.org<br />

GIVE. VOLUNTEER. ADVOCATE.<br />

6 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 7


HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES<br />

U.S. Rep. Richard Neal<br />

78 Center Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

Tel: 413-442-0946<br />

Fax 413-443-2792<br />

Washington D.C. Office:<br />

372 Cannon House Office Building<br />

Washington, D.C. 20515<br />

Tel: 202-225-5601<br />

Fax: 202-225-8112<br />

Represents – 1st Congressional District<br />

“By now it’s apparent that one misses out<br />

on Barrington Stage Company musicals<br />

at one’s peril…they are simply the best.”<br />

—Ed Siegel, WBUR<br />

STATE<br />

GOVERNOR<br />

Charlie Baker (R)<br />

Office of Constituent Services<br />

Massachusetts State House<br />

24 Beacon Street<br />

Office of the Governor<br />

Room 280<br />

Boston, MA 02133<br />

617-725-4005<br />

Springfield Office:<br />

413-784-1200<br />

ATTORNEY GENERAL<br />

Maura Healey (D)<br />

Attorney General’s Office – Western Massachusetts<br />

Real, Reputable,<br />

1441 Trusted. Main Street Your News<br />

12th Floor<br />

Media.<br />

Springfield, MA 01103<br />

THIS PUBLICATION<br />

SUPPORTS REAL<br />

NEWS.<br />

Tel: 413-784-1240<br />

Fax: 413-523-7765<br />

STATE SENATE<br />

Sen. Adam Hinds (D)<br />

Massachusetts State House<br />

24 Beacon Street<br />

Room 109-E<br />

Boston, MA 02133<br />

Tel: 617-722-1625<br />

Fax: 617-722-1523<br />

District Office:<br />

413-344-4561<br />

adam.hinds@masenate.gov<br />

REPRESENTATIVE<br />

Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvier (D)<br />

Third District<br />

State House<br />

24 Beacon Street<br />

Room 156<br />

Boston, MA 02133<br />

617-722-2240<br />

District Office:<br />

413-442-4300<br />

Tricia.Farley-Bouvier@mahouse.gov<br />

Taxation & Finance<br />

800-225-5829<br />

Child Abuse Reporting<br />

800-342-3720<br />

Commonwealth Museum<br />

220 Morrissey Boulevard<br />

Boston, MA 02125<br />

Tel: 617-727-9268<br />

Fax: 617-825-3613<br />

commonwealthmuseum@sec.state.ma.us<br />

Free admission<br />

BEST THEATRE OF THE DECADE<br />

5 years in a row!<br />

17 BERKSHIRE<br />

THEATRE<br />

AWARDS 2021<br />

REPORTERS, EDITORS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS<br />

CREATE REAL NEWS. JOURNALISM YOU CAN TRUST.<br />

#SupportRealNews<br />

Pictured: Alan H. Green, Alysha Umphress, Jacob Tischler,<br />

Allison Blackwell and Britney Coleman in Who Could Ask<br />

for Anything More? The Songs of George Gershwin, 2021.<br />

Photo by Daniel Rader.<br />

413.236.8888<br />

BARRINGTONSTAGECO.ORG<br />

8 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 9


CITY GOVERNMENT<br />

CITY GOVERNMENT<br />

Accounting Office<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01202<br />

413-499-9436<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> Municipal Airport<br />

832 Tamarack Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9790<br />

Office of Arts and Culture<br />

28 Renne Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9348<br />

Assessor’s Office<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-395-0102<br />

Berkshire Athenaeum<br />

Public Library<br />

One Wendell Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9480<br />

BUIILDING INSPECTORS:<br />

Building Commissioner: Jeffrey<br />

Clemons<br />

jclemons@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9440<br />

Local Building Inspector: Albert<br />

Leu<br />

aleu@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9440<br />

Local Building Inspector: William<br />

Spinney<br />

wspinney@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9440<br />

Local Building Inspector: Ray<br />

Ronan<br />

rronan@cityofpitssfield.org<br />

413-499-9440<br />

Senior Inspector of Wires: Michael<br />

Burton<br />

10 Fenn Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, NY 01201<br />

mburton@cityofpittsfield.orgt<br />

413-499-9443<br />

Plumbing and Gas Inspector: Tim<br />

Martin<br />

10 Fenn Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, NY 01201<br />

tmartin@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-448-9799<br />

Sealer of Weights & Measures: Sally<br />

Carnevale<br />

scarnevale@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9302<br />

Building and Grounds Maintenance:<br />

81 Hawthorne Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9476<br />

City Clerk<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9361<br />

City Solicitor<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9352<br />

Department of <strong>Community</strong> Development<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

Room 205<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9368<br />

Conservation Commission<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9359<br />

rvanderkar@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

Council on Aging<br />

330 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9346<br />

Emergency Management<br />

74 Columbus Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9764<br />

Engineering Division<br />

10 Fenn Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9327<br />

Finance and Administration – Treasurer’s<br />

Department<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9466<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> Fire Department<br />

74 Columbus Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9764<br />

Health Department<br />

100 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9411<br />

Human Resources Department<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9340<br />

Information Technology<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9404<br />

Licensing Board<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9363<br />

MAYOR’S OFFICE<br />

Mayor Linda Tyer<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9321<br />

Parking, Buildings and Grounds<br />

Maintenance Department<br />

413-499-9497<br />

Parks & Recreation<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9371<br />

PITTSFIELD POLICE<br />

DEPARTMENT<br />

Chief of Police Michael Wynn<br />

39 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

Tel: 413-448-9700<br />

Chief’s Office: 413-448-9717<br />

Records Bureau: 413-448-9711<br />

PITTSFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS<br />

Administration Building<br />

269 First Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9500<br />

contactus@pittsfield.net<br />

Department of Public Services<br />

10 Fenn Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9330<br />

dpw@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

Department of Public Utilities<br />

10 Fenn Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9330<br />

Purchasing Department<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9470<br />

Registrar of Voters and Elections<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9461<br />

Retired Senior Volunteer Program<br />

(RSVP)<br />

16 Bartlett Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9345<br />

Tax Collector<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9431<br />

Veterans Services Department<br />

330 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9433<br />

Wastewater Treatment Plant Division<br />

901 Holmes Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9304<br />

Water Division<br />

413-499-9339<br />

10 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 11


ELECTED OFFICIALS<br />

MAYOR<br />

Linda Tyer<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

ltyer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9321<br />

CITY CLERK<br />

Michele Benjamin<br />

70 Allen Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

mbenjamin@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9361<br />

MEMBERS AT-LARGE:<br />

President Peter Marchetti<br />

63 Valentine Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

pmarchetti@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-212-2163<br />

VICE PRESIDENT<br />

Peter White<br />

239 Jason Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

pwhite@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-464-9044<br />

Earl Persip III<br />

190 Karen Drive<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

epersip@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-281-4909<br />

Karen Kalinowsky<br />

63 Shaker Lane<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

kkalinowsky@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-329-0397<br />

MEMBERS BY WARD:<br />

WARD 1:<br />

Kenneth Warren Jr.<br />

399 Cheshire Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

kwarren@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-418-0830<br />

WARD 2:<br />

Charles Kronick<br />

93 Winsdor Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

ckronick@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-884-3570<br />

WARD 3:<br />

Kevin Sherman<br />

22 Kathy Way<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

ksherman@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-822-9511<br />

WARD 4:<br />

James Conant<br />

78 Lucia Drive<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

jconent@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-212-4974<br />

WARD 5:<br />

Patrick Kavey<br />

66 Spadina Parkway<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

pkavey@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-841-2770<br />

WARD 6:<br />

Dina Guiel Lampiasi<br />

8 Trova Terrace<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

Email: dlampiasi@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-433-8654<br />

WARD 7:<br />

Anthony Maffuccio<br />

256 Robbins Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

amaffuccio@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-4633<br />

PITTSFIELD SCHOOL COMMITTEE<br />

Mark Brazeau<br />

33 Melrose Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

mbrazeau@pittsfield.net<br />

413-770-1652<br />

Dr. William Cameron<br />

1016 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

wcameron@pittsfield.net<br />

413-443-9776<br />

Daniel Elias<br />

201 Mohegan Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

delias@pittsfield.net<br />

413-442-7521<br />

Sara Hathaway<br />

17 Walnut Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

shathaway@pittsfield.net<br />

413-442-6204<br />

Alison McGee<br />

979 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

amcgee@pittsfield.net<br />

518-727-3549<br />

Dr. Vicky Smith<br />

1218 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

vsmith@pittsfield.net<br />

413-629-8400<br />

12 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 13


BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS<br />

BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS<br />

AFFIRMATIVE ACTION<br />

ADVISORY COMMITTEE<br />

Michael Taylor, Human Resources<br />

Director<br />

mtaylor@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9340<br />

AGRICULTURE COMMISSION<br />

Jim McGrath, Open Space/Natural<br />

Resources Manager<br />

jmcgrath@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9344<br />

AIRPORT COMMISSION<br />

Daniel Shearer, Airport Manager<br />

dshearer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-448-9790<br />

ANIMAL CONTROL<br />

COMMISSION<br />

Renee Dodds, Clerk<br />

luludogdaycare@gmail.com<br />

BERKSHIRE ATHENAEUM<br />

TRUSTEES<br />

Alex Reczkowski, Library Director<br />

alex@pittsfieldlibrary.org<br />

413-499-9480<br />

BERKSHIRE COUNTY REGIONAL<br />

HOUSING AUTHORITY<br />

Brad Gordon<br />

bradg@bcrha.com<br />

413-443-8137<br />

BOARD OF ASSESSORS<br />

Paula King, Chief Assessor Chairperson<br />

413-395-0102<br />

BOARD OF HEALTH:<br />

Andy Cambi, Director<br />

acambi@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9411<br />

BOARD OF REGISTRARS<br />

Michele Benjamin, City Clerk<br />

mbenjamin@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9361<br />

CABLE TELEVISION COMMIS-<br />

SION<br />

Office of the Mayor<br />

cvanbramer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9321<br />

CAPITAL OUTLAY COMMITTEE<br />

Office of the Mayor<br />

cvanbramer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9321<br />

CHARTER REVIEW STUDY COM-<br />

MITTEE<br />

Catherine VanBramer, Clerk<br />

cvanbramer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9361<br />

COMMISSION ON DISABILITIES<br />

Michael Taylor, Human Resources<br />

Director<br />

mtaylor@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9340<br />

COMMISSION ON TOURISM<br />

Jennifer Glockner, Director of Cultural<br />

Development<br />

jglockner@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9348<br />

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT<br />

BOARD<br />

C.J. Hoss, City Planner<br />

choss@pissfieldch.com<br />

413-499-9366<br />

Ted Kozlowski, Clerk<br />

tkozlowski@cityofpittsfied.org<br />

413-499-9451<br />

CONSERVATION COMMISSION<br />

Rob Van Der Kar, Conservation<br />

Agent<br />

rvanderkar@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9359<br />

COUNCIL ON AGING<br />

James Clark, Director<br />

jclark@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9346<br />

CULTURAL COUNCIL<br />

Jennifer Glockner, Director of Cultural<br />

Development<br />

jglockner@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9348<br />

GREEN COMMISSION<br />

Jim McGrath, Parks, Open Space,<br />

Natural Resources Manager<br />

jmcgrath@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9344<br />

HARBORMASTER<br />

Jim McGrath, The future Parks, of our Open country Space, depends<br />

Natural on the Resources ability of Manager journalists to<br />

jmcgrath@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

provide the public with<br />

413-499-9344<br />

investigative journalism.<br />

HISTORICAL COMMISSION<br />

C.J. Hoss, City Planner<br />

choss@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9366 investigative journalism:<br />

HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION<br />

Donate to the International<br />

Christine<br />

Consortium<br />

Codella, Clerk<br />

of Investigative<br />

hrc@pittsfieldch.com<br />

Journalists today<br />

HUMAN SERVICES ADVISORY<br />

COUNCIL https://donate.icij.org/<br />

Justine Dodds, Program Director<br />

jdodds@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9358<br />

LICENSING BOARD<br />

www.newsmediaalliance.org<br />

Sabrina Gogan, Clerk<br />

sgogan@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9363<br />

MOBILE HOME PARK RENT<br />

CONTROL BOARD<br />

Justine Dodds, Housing Specialist<br />

jdodds@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9367<br />

ORDINANCE REVIEW<br />

COMMITTEE<br />

Catherine VanBramer, Clerk<br />

cvanbramer@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9361<br />

PARK COMMISSION<br />

parks@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

Help show your support for quality,<br />

413-499-9368<br />

PERSONNEL REVIEW BOARD<br />

Michael Taylor, Human Resources<br />

Director<br />

mtaylor@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9340<br />

PITTSFIELD ECONOMIC DEVEL-<br />

OPMENT AUTHORITY BOARD<br />

Michael Coakley<br />

mcoakley@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9726<br />

PITTSFIELD Real, Reputable, HOUSING AU-<br />

THORITY Trusted. Your News<br />

Connie, Media. Executive Director<br />

contact@pittsfieldhousing.org<br />

413-443-5936<br />

PITTSFIELD RETIREMENT<br />

BOARD<br />

Karen Lancto, Director<br />

klancto@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

THIS PUBLICATION<br />

413-499-9468 SUPPORTS REAL<br />

NEWS.<br />

POLICE ADVISORY AND RE-<br />

VIEW BOARD<br />

Ellen Maxon, Chair<br />

pittsfieldparb@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-448-9717<br />

RESOURCE RECOVERY COM-<br />

MITTEE<br />

Ricardo Morales, Commissioner of<br />

Public Services<br />

rmorales@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9330<br />

RSVP ADVISORY BOARD<br />

Jeffrey Roucoulet, Director<br />

jroucoulet@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9345<br />

SCHOOL BUILDING NEEDS<br />

COMMISSION<br />

Superintendent<br />

rblake@pittsfield.net<br />

413-499-9512<br />

SHADE TREE COMMISSION<br />

THE PUBLIC NEEDS THE TRUTH;<br />

NOT SOCIAL MEDIA HEADLINES & FAKE NEWS.<br />

“Journalism keeps you planted in the earth.”<br />

#SupportRealNews<br />

Ricardo Morales, Commissioner of<br />

Public Services<br />

rmorales@pittsfieldch.com<br />

413-499-9330<br />

SISTER CITIES COMMISSION<br />

Office of the Mayor<br />

cvanbramer@pittsfieldch.com<br />

413-499-9321<br />

TAXICAB COMMISSION<br />

Sabrina Gogan, Clerk<br />

sgogan@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-499-9363<br />

TRAFFIC COMMISSION<br />

Patricia Hogan, Clerk<br />

patsavon@nycap.rr.com<br />

413-443-3787<br />

ZONING BOARD OF APPEALS<br />

Nate Joyner, Permitting Coordinator<br />

njoyner@cityofpittsfield.org<br />

413-448-9673<br />

- Ray Bradbury<br />

#SupportRealNews<br />

14 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 15


SCHOOLS<br />

PITTSFIELD PUBLIC SCHOOLS<br />

Administration Building<br />

269 First Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9512<br />

MISS HALL’S SCHOOL<br />

492 Holmes Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-6401<br />

BERKSHIRE COMMUNITY<br />

COLLEGE<br />

1350 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-236-1000<br />

BERKSHIRE MUSIC SCHOOL<br />

30 Wendell Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-1411<br />

ACTIVITIES AND ATTRACTIONS<br />

ALBANY BERKSHIRE BALLET<br />

51 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-445-5382<br />

ballet@albanyberkshire.org<br />

ARROWHEAD, HOME OF HER-<br />

MAN MELVILLE<br />

780 Holmes Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-1793<br />

amelville@berkshirehistory.org<br />

BERKSHIRE ARTISANS<br />

28 Renne Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9348<br />

BERKSHIRE ATHENAEUM<br />

1 Wendell Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-9486<br />

BERKSHIRE LYRIC THEATRE<br />

P.O. Box 347<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01202<br />

413-499-0258<br />

berkshirelyric@gmail.com<br />

BERKSHIRE MUSEUM<br />

Route 7<br />

Downtown <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-7171<br />

info@berkshiremuseum.org<br />

BARRINGTON STAGE COMPANY<br />

297 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-9955<br />

info@barringtonstageco.org<br />

BERKSHIRE OPERA COMPANY<br />

297 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-9955<br />

info@berkshireoperafestival.org<br />

THE COLONIAL THEATRE<br />

111 South Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-8084<br />

info@berkshiretheatre.org<br />

HANCOCK SHAKER VILLAGE<br />

Route 20 and 41<br />

P.O. Box 927<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-0188<br />

info@hancockshakervillage.org<br />

SAMUEL HARRISON HOUSE<br />

82 Third Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-445-5414<br />

boardoftrustees@samuelharrison.org<br />

SOUTH MOUNTAIN CONCERTS<br />

Routes 7 and 20<br />

P.O. Box 23<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01202<br />

413-442-2106<br />

TOWN PLAYERS<br />

Performing at Berkshire<br />

<strong>Community</strong> College<br />

Robert M. Boland Theater<br />

1350 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-9279<br />

Mailing Address :<br />

P.O. Box 765<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01202<br />

Bringing you unique dishes<br />

with traditional flavors of the Mediterranean<br />

to Adams, MA. Come in and try our<br />

succulent dishes. You’ll be happy you did.<br />

47 PARK STREET, ADAMS, MA | 413-776-7121 | FIREHOUSECAFE.NET<br />

16 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 17


TENNIS COURTS (FIRST COME, FIRST SERVE)<br />

ORGANIZATIONS<br />

HERBERG MIDDLE SCHOOL<br />

501 Pomeroy Avenua<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

LAKEWOOD PARK<br />

Newell Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

RECREATION<br />

BOUSQUET SKI AREA/PLAY BOUSQUET<br />

101 Dan Fox Drive<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-8316<br />

info@bousquetmountain.com<br />

PUBLIC GOLF COURSES<br />

GENERAL ELECTRIC ATHLETIC CLUB<br />

Crane Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-5746<br />

PITTSFIELD HIGH SCHOOL<br />

300 East Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

PONTERRIL TENNIS COURTS<br />

East Acres Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

ONOTA BOAT LIVERY<br />

463 Pecks Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-1724<br />

onotaboatlivery@gmail.com<br />

TACONIC HIGH SCHOOL<br />

96 Valentine Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

PONTOOSUC LAKE COUNTRY CLUB<br />

Ridge Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-445-4217<br />

AMERICAN LEGION<br />

41 Wendell Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-9853<br />

BERKSHIRE BLACK ECONOMIC<br />

COUNCIL<br />

contact@berkshirebec.org<br />

www.berkshirebec.org<br />

BERKSHIRE COMMUNITY AC-<br />

TION<br />

1531 East Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-445-4503<br />

BERKSHIRE COUNTY ARC<br />

395 South Street, #6803<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-499-4241<br />

bcarc@bcarc.org<br />

BERKSHIRE INTERFAITH ORGA-<br />

NIZING<br />

175 Wendell Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

310-910-5350<br />

office@biorganizing.org<br />

BERKSHIRE MEDICAL CENTER<br />

725 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-447-2000<br />

BERKSHIRE UNITED WAY<br />

200 South Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-6948<br />

info@berkshireunitedway.org<br />

BIG BROTHERS AND BIG SIS-<br />

TERS<br />

292 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-443-9471<br />

BOYS & GIRLS CLUB OF THE<br />

BERKSHIRES<br />

16 Melville Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-8258<br />

info@bgcberkshires.org<br />

CENTRAL BERKSHIRE HABITAT<br />

FOR HUMANITY<br />

314 Columbus Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-3181<br />

info@berkshirehabitat.org<br />

JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE<br />

BERKSHIRES<br />

196 South Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-4360<br />

federation@jerishberkshires.org<br />

MASSACHUSETTS AUDUBON<br />

SOCIETY<br />

Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary<br />

Holmes Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-637-0320<br />

westsanctuaries@massaudubon.org<br />

NAACP – BERKSHIRE COUNTY<br />

BRANCH<br />

P.O. Box 605<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01202-0605<br />

naacpberkshirecounty@gmail.com<br />

R.O.P.E.<br />

Rites of Passage + Empowerment<br />

www.ropeberkshires.org<br />

ropeworld1995@gmail.com<br />

UCP OF WESTERN MASSACHU-<br />

SETTS<br />

208 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-1562<br />

YES INITIATIVE<br />

Youth, Education and Sport Initiative<br />

Inc.<br />

437 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-770-6604<br />

info@yesforchange.org<br />

18 DEGREES<br />

Family Services for Western Massachusetts<br />

480 West Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-8281<br />

info@18degreesma.org<br />

STATE PARKS<br />

PITTSFIELD STATE FOREST<br />

Cascade Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-442-8992<br />

THE PUBLIC NEEDS THE<br />

TRUTH; NOT SOCIAL MEDIA<br />

HEADLINES & FAKE NEWS.<br />

#SupportRealNews<br />

18 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 19


FIRE COMPANIES<br />

Berkshire Black Economic Council<br />

Planting the seeds for our future<br />

FIRE DEPARTMENT<br />

HEADQUARTERS: EN-<br />

GINE 3<br />

74 Columbus Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9753<br />

ENGINE 1<br />

331 West Housatonic Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9751<br />

ENGINE 5<br />

54 Pecks Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9755<br />

ENGINE 6<br />

8 Holmes Road<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9756<br />

ENGINE 2<br />

9 Somerset Avenue<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

413-448-9752<br />

GOALS<br />

use your<br />

• Locate, recruit, and retain other Black<br />

entrepreneurs and businesses<br />

VOICE.<br />

Protect freedom of speech.<br />

freespeech.center<br />

Alanna Saunders and Michael Starr in Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, 2021.<br />

Photo by Emma K. Rothenberg-Ware.<br />

www.BerkshireTheatreGroup.org<br />

(413) 997-4444<br />

• Increase the number of Berkshire Black<br />

businesses that are certified as minority owned<br />

businesses<br />

• Help Black-owned businesses gain access to<br />

business coaching, professional development,<br />

grants, and capital<br />

• Promote economic justice by advocating<br />

public policy and increasing supplier diversity<br />

Email: contact@berkshirebec.org<br />

Visit: berkshirebec.org<br />

20 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 21


The Berkshire<br />

Eagle:<br />

Revitalizing<br />

a community’s<br />

‘town square’<br />

Frederic Rutberg<br />

EAGLE, from page 22<br />

Banner in 1961, the Brattleboro<br />

Reformer in 1969, and<br />

the Manchester Journal in the<br />

early 1980s, according to the<br />

company’s website.<br />

The company remained in the<br />

Miller family until 1995.<br />

During that time, The Berkshire<br />

Eagle evolved into a<br />

highly respected community<br />

newspaper, and many of its<br />

reporters moved on to distinguished<br />

careers with publications<br />

including The New York<br />

Times, The Washington Post,<br />

The Wall Street Journal and<br />

others.<br />

Among those distinguished<br />

reporters was Daniel Pearl,<br />

who went on to report for The<br />

Wall Street Journal and was<br />

kidnapped and killed in 2002<br />

while conducting an investigation<br />

in Pakistan during the<br />

war in Afghanistan.<br />

The Berkshire Eagle and other<br />

newspapers acquired by the<br />

“The Berkshire Eagle was extraordinary. That sort<br />

of dried up when the Miller family sold the paper in<br />

1995 and in the 20 years between when they sold<br />

the paper and we bought it, it shrunk from its previous<br />

greatness, and so I got the idea that we could restore<br />

some of the former glory of the paper because<br />

it is important for the community to have someone<br />

telling the stories of what is happening here.”<br />

— current co-owner Fredric D. Rutberg<br />

Miller family over the years<br />

were purchased by a Denver-based<br />

media company in<br />

1995 and lost some of its luster,<br />

current co-owner Fredric<br />

D. Rutberg said.<br />

“It got a lot smaller. They cut<br />

a number of reporters, some<br />

vendors were cut, the size of<br />

the paper was reduced and<br />

they relied on wire service<br />

reporting as opposed to local<br />

reporting,” Rutberg said. “The<br />

paper was a shell of what it<br />

once was.”<br />

Rutberg is a lawyer who was<br />

appointed to the district court<br />

in Massachusetts in 1994 and<br />

served for 21 years. Judges are<br />

mandated in the state to retire<br />

at age 70, so as Rutberg approached<br />

that milestone, he<br />

began considering his future<br />

options. The Berkshire Eagle<br />

caught his eye after Rutberg<br />

attended a lecture in Nantucket<br />

where the speaker spoke of<br />

the importance of journalism.<br />

“He said, kind of off-handedly,<br />

‘Democracy requires citizenship<br />

and citizenship requires<br />

a town square,’” Rutberg said.<br />

Plans are underway for our new branch at the<br />

corner of South and Reed Streets in <strong>Pittsfield</strong>.<br />

CONSTRUCTION BEGINNING<br />

SPRING OF 2022!<br />

MEMBER FDIC/MEMBER DIF<br />

That off-hand statement put<br />

the wheels in motion.<br />

Rutberg said The Berkshire Eagle<br />

had once been regarded as<br />

“one of the great newspapers<br />

of the world,” and he wanted<br />

to restore that former luster.<br />

“In their class, along with a<br />

world newspaper — at the<br />

time The New York Times was<br />

a national paper — The Berkshire<br />

Eagle was a local newspaper,<br />

and it set the standard<br />

for local newspapers,” Rutberg<br />

said, pointing to the worldclass<br />

journalists The Berkshire<br />

Eagle had turned out over the<br />

years.<br />

But things changed after the<br />

Miller family sold the company,<br />

he said.<br />

“The Berkshire Eagle was extraordinary.<br />

That sort of dried<br />

up when the Miller family sold<br />

the paper in 1995 and in the<br />

20 years between when they<br />

sold the paper and we bought<br />

See EAGLE, page 24<br />

EQUAL HOUSING LENDER<br />

Experience Matters.<br />

Trusted Brands.<br />

Local Business, Local Focus since 1928.<br />

carrhardware.com<br />

By Melanie Lekocevic<br />

Capital Region Independent Media<br />

PITTSFIELD — The Berkshire Eagle can trace its lineage as far<br />

back as 1789, and today has been revitalized with the goal of<br />

returning to its roots as a “town square” for the community it<br />

serves.<br />

The Western Star, a weekly newspaper founded in 1789 in Stockbridge,<br />

Massachusetts, changed its name and ownership several<br />

times, and eventually transformed into the weekly Berkshire<br />

Eagle in 1852, according to the company’s website. The paper<br />

was purchased by Kelton B. Miller, along with several partners,<br />

in 1891, and in 1892 became a daily newspaper, The Berkshire<br />

Evening Eagle.<br />

Miller bought the paper from his partners and over the years<br />

acquired several other publications, including the Bennington<br />

See EAGLE, page 23<br />

WWW.LEEBANK.COM LEE | STOCKBRIDGE | GREAT BARRINGTON | PITTSFIELD | LENOX 413-243-0117<br />

22 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 23


WHERE’D<br />

YOU GET<br />

YOUR<br />

KICKS?<br />

For the Love of Diamonds<br />

RICKS KICKS<br />

1575 WEST<br />

HOUSATONIC STREET,<br />

UNIT #1, PITTSFIELD, MA<br />

413.347.2957<br />

WE HAVE MOVED TO<br />

558 EAST STREET IN PITTSFIELD<br />

413.447.9023 | RJSTOHR.COM<br />

PLENTY OF FREE & HASSLE FREE PARKING IN OUR PRIVATE LOT<br />

The building where the Berkshire Eagle is located.<br />

EAGLE, from page 23<br />

it, it shrunk from its previous greatness,<br />

and so I got the idea that we could restore<br />

some of the former glory of the paper because<br />

it is important for the community<br />

to have someone telling the stories of<br />

what is happening here,” Rutberg said.<br />

Rutberg purchased The Berkshire Eagle<br />

and its accompanying newspapers along<br />

with three partners in 2016 — Stanford<br />

Lipsey, Hans Morris and Robert G. Wilmers.<br />

“Our goal was to create the finest group<br />

of newspapers in America,” Rutberg said.<br />

“That was our initial goal and that remains<br />

our goal.”<br />

Lipsey died in November 2016 and Wilmers<br />

died the following year, in December<br />

2017, according to the company’s website.<br />

The board of directors of New England<br />

Newspapers Inc. currently consists<br />

of Rutberg, Morris and John Mulliken,<br />

who represents the Wilmers family, along<br />

with Martin C. Langeveld, who was associated<br />

with both of the newspaper’s former<br />

owners.<br />

Having a viable and contributing newspaper<br />

is vital to a growing community,<br />

Rutberg said.<br />

“It’s really important for economic development<br />

for the stories to be told about<br />

the interesting and creative things going<br />

on in our world, not just ‘cops and court,’”<br />

he said.<br />

Covering crime stories had become a<br />

mainstay of the newspaper, dominating<br />

its front page, during the years between<br />

the sale of the company by the Miller<br />

family and when Rutberg and his partners<br />

purchased the publications.<br />

After the four partners took over, they<br />

made significant investments in the operation<br />

of The Berkshire Eagle.<br />

“We invested in reporters,” Rutberg said.<br />

“We now have 30 or 32 reporters, including<br />

editors.”<br />

With a much bigger staff, The Berkshire<br />

Eagle was able to expand its coverage on<br />

several fronts, perhaps most notably its<br />

reporting on the arts and cultural scene<br />

FILE PHOTO<br />

that is so endemic to the Berkshires.<br />

“The thing we did that was most significant<br />

was we set out to be the finest community<br />

newspaper in America,” Rutberg<br />

said. “We had to have a world-class arts<br />

and culture section because A, it’s necessary,<br />

but B, because the arts are so important<br />

to the Berkshire community and<br />

the economy. The board challenged the<br />

editorial staff to do that, and they came<br />

up with the Berkshire Landscapes section<br />

that we added back in May of 2017. It’s<br />

quite extraordinary — it has shrunk because<br />

of COVID and things closed down,<br />

but it was originally a 12-page section,<br />

all color, and it is quite spectacular for a<br />

newspaper of our size.”<br />

In serving as the Berkshires’ “town square,”<br />

Rutberg makes a point to take into consideration<br />

the needs and wants of the<br />

community the newspaper serves.<br />

“I always tell people — if you see something<br />

in the paper that you like, please<br />

tell all your friends,” he said. “And if you<br />

see something that you don’t like, please<br />

tell me.”<br />

Call Casey Albert Today 413.652.4265<br />

BeeNiceTravel@gmail.com<br />

www.evotravelagent.com/beenicetravel<br />

Bee Nice<br />

Travel<br />

Dream Vacations<br />

At Discounted Prices!<br />

FLIGHTS • HOTELS • CRUISES • WEDDING DESTINATIONS & MORE!<br />

Florida Registration #35395 • CST# 2001330-10 • Hawaii # TAR-6612 • Washington # 603352551<br />

24 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 25


CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

The Berkshire Museum was closed for several months during the COVID-19 shutdown, and used the time to get work done on a long-term renovation project.<br />

Local<br />

businesses that<br />

are thriving in<br />

pandemic’s wake<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

Wally, the beloved stegosaurus that stands guard outside the Berkshire Museum, got a makeover while the museum was closed for the COVID-19 shutdown.<br />

By Melanie Lekocevic<br />

Capital Region Independent Media<br />

PITTSFIELD — There’s nary a<br />

person, place or business that<br />

has not been impacted by the<br />

COVID-19 pandemic in one<br />

way or another.<br />

From the mind-boggling<br />

death toll to months’ long<br />

shutdowns and the virus<br />

variants, vaccination controversies<br />

and face masks that<br />

continue to linger two-and-a<br />

half years after the start of the<br />

pandemic in March 2020, it’s<br />

difficult to overstate the impact<br />

of the crisis on the global<br />

community.<br />

For <strong>Pittsfield</strong> businesses, the<br />

impact of the pandemic has<br />

varied, from those that were<br />

shut down for months and<br />

found rebounding difficult,<br />

to essential businesses that<br />

thrived in the early days and<br />

now find new challenges facing<br />

them.<br />

“People were really respectful and really grateful<br />

that we provided a safe place for them to visit.<br />

We were very attentive to all the safety protocols<br />

and really followed the CDC (Centers for Disease<br />

Control and Prevention) guidelines, the commonwealth<br />

guidelines, our local city guidelines — we<br />

never went outside of that because obviously<br />

health and safety is of utmost importance to us.”<br />

— Hilary Ferrone, chief engagement officer for the museum<br />

BERKSHIRE MUSEUM<br />

For some businesses and cultural<br />

institutions, the early<br />

days of the shutdown meant<br />

exactly that — their doors<br />

were closed completely. The<br />

Berkshire Museum was closed<br />

for nearly half of 2020. And<br />

when their doors did reopen,<br />

it looked very different from<br />

their pre-COVID days.<br />

“We shut down in March 2020<br />

and we reopened in August<br />

of that year with limited admissions<br />

so you had to make<br />

reservations,” Hilary Ferrone,<br />

chief engagement officer for<br />

the museum, said. “There were<br />

very clear paths walking one<br />

way through the museum, we<br />

were really attentive to distancing,<br />

and each pod (of people)<br />

that was allowed to come<br />

in was just a group of six and<br />

it had to be a family group, so<br />

we wouldn’t have six strangers<br />

in the same pod.”<br />

While things differed from the<br />

museum’s typical operations,<br />

it worked, Ferrone said.<br />

“People were really respectful<br />

and really grateful that<br />

we provided a safe place for<br />

them to visit,” Ferrone said.<br />

“We were very attentive to all<br />

the safety protocols and really<br />

followed the CDC (Centers for<br />

Disease Control and Prevention)<br />

guidelines, the commonwealth<br />

guidelines, our local<br />

city guidelines — we never<br />

went outside of that because<br />

obviously health and safety is<br />

of utmost importance to us.”<br />

The Berkshire Museum, located<br />

at 39 South St. in <strong>Pittsfield</strong>,<br />

is a unique museum offering<br />

eclectic collections, from history<br />

and art to science and<br />

technology. The museum even<br />

includes an aquarium with<br />

live sea creatures and a touch<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 28<br />

26 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 27


BUSINESSES, from page 28<br />

were so concerned about<br />

people staying employed and<br />

keeping their jobs,” Ferrone<br />

said.<br />

But the impact of the museum<br />

and other cultural institutions<br />

goes beyond dollars and<br />

cents, and the pandemic has<br />

helped shine a light on that,<br />

she said.<br />

“I think we are all in a place of<br />

seeing what really matters to<br />

our community and I think cultural<br />

institutions play a really<br />

important role,” Ferrone said.<br />

“We had a donor tell us recently<br />

that the Berkshire Museum<br />

is the glue of the community,<br />

and I think there could be no<br />

better compliment than that.”<br />

CARR HARDWARE<br />

For some businesses deemed<br />

“essential,” the COVID-19 pandemic<br />

proved to be a boon,<br />

but even then, there were<br />

challenges.<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 30<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

Carr Hardware, deemed an “essential business” by the commonwealth, has been at the frontline of the pandemic from the start.<br />

Carr Hardware has been serving customers throughout the COVID-19 outbreak.<br />

BUSINESSES, from page 27<br />

tank, and exhibits geared to<br />

both children and adults.<br />

“It is really, really fun — it is<br />

multi-disciplinary and also interdisciplinary,<br />

showing how<br />

everything informs other aspects<br />

of the world,” she said.<br />

“We have about 40,000 pieces<br />

in our collection, ranging<br />

from shells and birds to art<br />

and sculpture, from all sorts of<br />

cultures and places all around<br />

the world.”<br />

The museum, at nearly 120<br />

years old, also has one very<br />

distinctive and much beloved<br />

feature — a large replica of a<br />

stegosaurus named Wally that<br />

has long stood guard outside<br />

the museum’s entrance.<br />

Wally got a makeover during<br />

“We were considered an essential business,<br />

so we were quite busy. We sold a lot of PPE<br />

(personal protective equipment) and a lot<br />

of home improvement.”<br />

— Bart Raser, owner of Carr Hardware<br />

the COVID shutdown.<br />

“Wally is back,” Ferrone said.<br />

“He was restored during<br />

COVID at Louis Paul Jonas Studios,<br />

where he was created.<br />

He is all freshly resurfaced and<br />

repositioned in front of the<br />

museum. That was one of the<br />

things that we did during the<br />

downtime of COVID, when the<br />

museum was closed.”<br />

When most businesses were<br />

shut down in March 2020, the<br />

Berkshire Museum was in the<br />

middle of a renovation plan<br />

and used the shutdown time<br />

and the months that followed<br />

to get some work done.<br />

“We were in the midst of these<br />

long-term renovation plans,<br />

so we were able to get a lot of<br />

construction done during that<br />

period,” Ferrone said. “Finally,<br />

in August 2021, we reopened<br />

the museum fully. Our second<br />

floor has been renovated so<br />

we had new gallery space, and<br />

since then we have been open<br />

seven days a week, just like<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

pre-COVID times.”<br />

Museums may not have been<br />

considered an “essential business”<br />

during the COVID shutdown,<br />

but they are big drivers<br />

for local economies and can<br />

spur growth and create jobs,<br />

Ferrone said.<br />

“When we look at who visits<br />

our museum, yes, our primary<br />

support is from people<br />

who live locally, but we bring<br />

in people from Albany, from<br />

central Massachusetts, from<br />

southern Vermont. That’s really<br />

important, but we also employ<br />

28 people at the museum,<br />

and during our construction<br />

project we worked with local<br />

firms and kept them busy,<br />

even during COVID when we<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 29<br />

BUSTED PHONE??<br />

We do repairs & virus removal on<br />

mobile devices and PC’s<br />

• Accessories<br />

• iPhone-Android<br />

• Computer Repair<br />

PhoneBros<br />

Home Of The Phone Pros<br />

• Service-Repair<br />

• New & Used<br />

WE HAVE LOW PRICED PHONE PLANS!<br />

1575 West Housatonic Street, Unit #1<br />

Mon - Fri: 11am - 8pm • Sat: 11am - 6pm<br />

28 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 29


Crust Pizza uses the finest ingredients it can find for its handcrafted pizzas.<br />

BUSINESSES, from page 29<br />

Carr Hardware has eight locations in<br />

western Massachusetts and northern<br />

Connecticut, and its flagship store is in<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> at 547 North St. The store has<br />

been in business since 1928 and was purchased<br />

by the Raser family in 1962, owner<br />

Bart Raser said.<br />

“It’s a full-line hardware and rental operation,<br />

so we sell hardware, electrical,<br />

plumbing, tools, paint, all the things you<br />

would imagine,” Raser said. “We are also<br />

in the equipment and party and event<br />

rental business. Another big piece is our<br />

industrial-commercial business, called<br />

Carr Supply. That sells large institutional,<br />

government and large contractor supplies.”<br />

Because hardware stores were considered<br />

an essential business by the commonwealth<br />

during the COVID-19 shutdown,<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

Carr Hardware remained open from day<br />

one. And business was booming.<br />

“We were considered an essential business,<br />

so we were quite busy,” Raser said.<br />

“We sold a lot of PPE (personal protective<br />

equipment) and a lot of home improvement.”<br />

With most people staying home far more<br />

than they typically would, the early days<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 31<br />

BUSINESSES, from page 30<br />

of the pandemic were a busy<br />

time for Carr Hardware.<br />

“People were doing a lot of<br />

painting, gardening, all kinds<br />

of home repair,” Raser said.<br />

“People wanted to be outside,<br />

so we saw a lot of outdoor living<br />

improvement — we sold<br />

a lot of outdoor fire pits, outdoor<br />

furniture, hammocks,<br />

mosquito magnets, things<br />

that would extend the outdoor<br />

season.”<br />

As an essential business, the<br />

store was never shut down<br />

and adapted from the start of<br />

the outbreak to safely serve its<br />

customers, he said.<br />

“We were customer-facing<br />

from start to finish,” Raser<br />

noted. “We revolutionized<br />

our platform in terms of flexibility<br />

— we allowed phonein,<br />

email, texting to order for<br />

curbside pickup. We brought<br />

in sanitizers so we could spray<br />

our stores in the morning and<br />

throughout the day to keep<br />

everybody safe.”<br />

Carr Hardware and its employees<br />

took great care to follow<br />

health department best practices<br />

to prevent the spread<br />

of the virus as the stores remained<br />

open for business.<br />

“We were hyperaggressive<br />

about it — we partnered with<br />

a local liquor manufacturer<br />

who was making hand sanitizer<br />

so we could distribute<br />

it throughout our footprint<br />

when nobody else could get<br />

it,” Raser said. “We partnered<br />

with a group of seamstresses<br />

who made masks for us in the<br />

beginning of the pandemic<br />

when they weren’t available.”<br />

While business was booming<br />

throughout the virus outbreak,<br />

there were challenges<br />

in hiring and maintaining an<br />

adequate workforce to serve<br />

all those customers as it became<br />

difficult to attract workers<br />

willing to interact with the<br />

public.<br />

“The aftermath of personnel<br />

has been the biggest negative<br />

takeaway that we have had<br />

from the pandemic,” Raser<br />

said. “Demand was brisk, but<br />

our ability to execute at retail<br />

was challenged because folks<br />

who were customer-facing<br />

became uncomfortable. We<br />

had a lot of people who had<br />

been with us for many, many<br />

years make the decision to retire<br />

because maybe they were<br />

a little bit older and they were<br />

afraid. We were on the frontlines<br />

throughout the pandemic.<br />

And now, with the global<br />

staffing crisis, it has been hard<br />

to find workers. That has been<br />

the biggest impact for us —<br />

finding workers.”<br />

But like other <strong>Pittsfield</strong> businesses,<br />

Raser has found strong<br />

support from the community.<br />

“The community has been<br />

incredibly supportive,” Raser<br />

said. “There has been a<br />

big push back to shopping<br />

local and brick-and-mortar<br />

throughout this. The large majority<br />

of our stores are located<br />

in downtowns so we are big<br />

believers in downtown and<br />

community, and they have<br />

supported us throughout the<br />

pandemic.”<br />

CRUST PIZZA<br />

James Cervone, owner of<br />

Crust Pizza, got his business<br />

off the ground a few months<br />

into the start of the pandemic<br />

but rethought his business<br />

model to accommodate state<br />

and local health guidelines<br />

and has thrived.<br />

“We started right in the middle<br />

of the pandemic,” Cervone<br />

said. “We opened Aug. 31,<br />

2020. We are located right in<br />

the center of <strong>Pittsfield</strong> at 505<br />

East St.”<br />

Cervone relocated the business<br />

to its current location<br />

in January of 2020. When the<br />

pandemic began in March of<br />

that year, no one knew how intense<br />

it would be or how long<br />

the virus would remain.<br />

“COVID was supposed to go<br />

away over the summer, but no<br />

one really knew what was go-<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 32<br />

HAPPINESS TOOLBOX FOR BERKSHIRE YOUTH<br />

We focus on the unity in <strong>Community</strong><br />

Happiness Toolbox (ages 4- 14) This program promotes cultural and<br />

multilingual literacy for children of all backgrounds. Fun, exploratory<br />

curriculum includes embracing diverse cultures, learning foreign<br />

languages, developing and identifying community and personal values,<br />

connecting to self and environment.<br />

For more information or to joing the Real Talk<br />

please call 413.394.4305 or visit our website:<br />

WWW.MULTICULTURALBRIDGE.ORG<br />

MARK T. BRENNAN<br />

Attorney At Law<br />

54 North Street<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong>, MA 01201<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> 413.499.1022<br />

Amherst 413.253.3111<br />

Fax 413.499.1023<br />

Email: mark@brennanlawoffices.com<br />

30 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 31


BUSINESSES, from page 32<br />

because we thought it was the<br />

smart thing to do.”<br />

The business installed a special<br />

fan to circulate the air,<br />

with an infrared light that kills<br />

germs in an effort to keep the<br />

virus at bay.<br />

“And we were always very<br />

aggressive with washing our<br />

hands and making sure masks<br />

covered our workers’ faces,”<br />

Cervone added.<br />

With changing commonwealth<br />

mandates, Crust Pizza<br />

became flexible in how it<br />

served its customers.<br />

“Takeout became a very big<br />

part of our business,” Cervone<br />

said. “We have a very large<br />

seating capacity — we can<br />

seat 50 people — and we went<br />

to 100% takeout, which was a<br />

real challenge.”<br />

Under Crust’s original business<br />

plan, Cervone envisioned<br />

40% of the business would<br />

be takeout service, with 60%<br />

dine-in. But COVID changed<br />

that.<br />

“Right off the bat, we were<br />

maybe 30% dine-in and 70%<br />

takeout, and then for a period<br />

of time, we were 100% takeout<br />

when indoor dining was<br />

shut down,” Cervone said. “It<br />

was a challenge.”<br />

Continuing challenges include<br />

the supply chain, making obtaining<br />

some ingredients difficult,<br />

as well as inflation that is<br />

causing higher prices.<br />

Throughout the pandemic,<br />

though, the community has<br />

been behind the business every<br />

step of the way, Cervone<br />

said.<br />

“The city of <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, when<br />

something new comes to<br />

town, you’ll get support. People<br />

will come out and give it<br />

a try. They might even give it<br />

two tries,” he said. “It’s a tremendous<br />

business environment.<br />

The support is really<br />

fabulous.”<br />

Where New Beginnings<br />

Come To Light<br />

Working with families and individuals to<br />

realize their opportunities and goals.<br />

Volunteers Welcome.<br />

18DEGREESMA.ORG<br />

480 WEST ST • PITTSFIELD, MA • 413.448.8281<br />

59 INTERSTATE DR • W.SPRINGFIELD MA • 413.584.5690<br />

Crust Pizza opened its doors at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, and adjusted its business model to thrive in a challenging environment.<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

BUSINESSES, from page 31<br />

“The community has been extremely supportive.<br />

I have said it a thousand times — doing business<br />

in <strong>Pittsfield</strong> is fantastic because the community<br />

really does support good local businesses.”<br />

— James Cervone, owner of Crust Pizza<br />

ing to happen,” Cervone said.<br />

“We thought it wasn’t going to<br />

be a big deal. By the time we<br />

started renovating the space,<br />

it looked like it was going to<br />

be more intense, but we were<br />

committed at that point. We<br />

didn’t plan on opening a pizza<br />

café during a pandemic, it was<br />

just the way it worked out.”<br />

Through the trials of the next<br />

two years, Cervone said having<br />

the strong support of the<br />

community has made all the<br />

difference.<br />

“The community has been extremely<br />

supportive,” he said. “I<br />

have said it a thousand times<br />

— doing business in <strong>Pittsfield</strong><br />

is fantastic because the community<br />

really does support<br />

good local businesses.”<br />

Crust Pizza serves high-quality<br />

handmade pizzas using the<br />

finest ingredients they can<br />

find.<br />

“We make everything ourselves<br />

— our dough uses<br />

Italian flours. We make it the<br />

traditional way — we age it<br />

for four days, and most of our<br />

sauces are organic,” he said.<br />

“We think we are delivering a<br />

very high-quality pizza.”<br />

The eatery produces handcrafted<br />

pizza, with gluten-free,<br />

dairy-free and vegan options,<br />

along with traditional-style<br />

selections.<br />

“I started out with an idea to<br />

create this pizza using the best<br />

ingredients we could find,<br />

regardless of price,” Cervone<br />

said. “We found out that just<br />

because something is more<br />

expensive doesn’t mean it’s<br />

better, but certain things that<br />

we get that are the most expensive<br />

are things like organic<br />

tomatoes from California<br />

for our sauce, and we source<br />

all our cheese from a place in<br />

Wisconsin. We get our pepperoni<br />

from a butcher in Ohio,<br />

and we get our mushrooms<br />

locally from a farm in North<br />

Adams. We could get those<br />

items much, much cheaper,<br />

but the quality and the flavor<br />

are not there, and we would<br />

become just like every other<br />

pizza place.”<br />

Opening a few months into<br />

the pandemic, Crust Pizza<br />

adjusted its business model<br />

to reflect health department<br />

requirements and best practices.<br />

“When we first opened, we<br />

had the mandate in place and<br />

there was social distancing<br />

for dining 6 feet apart,” he<br />

said. “When we opened, like<br />

most places, we had an initial<br />

boost of customers. Then the<br />

city shut down indoor dining<br />

again. My wife and I were<br />

always ahead of that — we<br />

shut down indoor dining two<br />

weeks before the city did just<br />

See BUSINESSES, page 33<br />

CUSTOM EMBROIDERY &<br />

SCREEN-PRINTING<br />

Family owned with 25 years of experience<br />

supplying companies with branded apparel and<br />

promotional products. Embroidering anything<br />

from hats to polo shirts or from bags to jackets!<br />

Call Today To Submit Your Order<br />

237 FIRST STREET • PITTSFIELD, MA 01201<br />

(413) 447-9452 • ELEGANTSTITCHESINC.COM<br />

32 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 33


<strong>Pittsfield</strong>:<br />

The birthplace of<br />

post-pandemic theater<br />

Tyler Hanes and the ensemble in Barrington Stage Company’s “West Side Story.”<br />

COURTESY OF DANIEL RADER<br />

COURTESY OF DANIEL RADER<br />

Sarah Crane, Magdalena Rodriguez, Skyler Volpe, Tamrin Goldberg and Jerusha Cavazos in “West Side Story,” performed at Barrington Stage Company.<br />

By Melanie Lekocevic<br />

Capital Region Independent Media<br />

PITTSFIELD — When the nation —<br />

and world — shut down due to the<br />

COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020,<br />

the creative economy was devastated<br />

as the lights dimmed on Broadway,<br />

and everywhere else, for the first time<br />

in recent memory.<br />

As the lockdown continued, productions<br />

were canceled, performers and<br />

stage crews lost their jobs, and the<br />

creative spirit went dormant.<br />

But two <strong>Pittsfield</strong> groups were determined<br />

to revive the soul of live theater<br />

that is so vital to the Berkshires.<br />

In fact, they were the first two theater<br />

groups in the country to return to live<br />

performances, and it brought their<br />

audiences to tears.<br />

Barrington Stage Company and Berkshire<br />

Theatre Group blazed a new trail<br />

in the wake of the coronavirus out-<br />

See THEATER, page 36<br />

COURTESY OF DANIEL RADER<br />

Danny Bevins, Sean Ewing and Julio Catano-Yee in “West Side Story” at Barrington Stage Company.<br />

34 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 35


THEATER, from page 35<br />

break, paving the way for others to follow.<br />

BARRINGTON STAGE<br />

COMPANY<br />

In a typical year, the Barrington Stage Company<br />

puts on eight live productions on its<br />

two stages in the summer, and in the fall<br />

stages a show aimed at getting youth interested<br />

in live theater. In February, the group<br />

does a “10x10 New Play Festival,” featuring<br />

ten 10-minute plays.<br />

“We have a 520-seat Main Stage and a 136-<br />

seat Stage 2,” said founder and Artistic Director<br />

Julianne Boyd. “The Main Stage is for bigger<br />

shows like musicals, maybe Pulitzer Prize<br />

and Tony Award winning shows, shows that<br />

people already know and want to see. At our<br />

Stage 2, we do more new plays, things that<br />

are perhaps more experimental. We have<br />

been able to find an audience for both.”<br />

“We basically do May through October, and<br />

then the month of February,” she added.<br />

But all that stopped when the COVID pandemic<br />

hit in 2020.<br />

Like everything else in the country, Barrington<br />

Stage Company shut down in March<br />

2020, but by summer they were ready to venture<br />

back into live theater, with strict health<br />

and safety precautions in place, Boyd said.<br />

And they were the first to do so in the nation,<br />

she said.<br />

“We were the very first,” Boyd said. “We started<br />

with ‘Harry Clarke’, a one-person show,<br />

outside under a tent, and then Berkshire Theatre<br />

Group opened the next night.”<br />

Barrington Stage Company wanted to keep<br />

it simple for its first post-lockdown production<br />

and staged a one-person show with<br />

minimal crew to ensure social distancing and<br />

other COVID protocols were possible.<br />

“We were very careful — we didn’t want<br />

dressers or actors backstage, we wanted it to<br />

be a very simple show and we did it outdoors<br />

under a tent,” she said.<br />

The group worked in conjunction with Berkshire<br />

Theatre Group, which opened its first<br />

post-shutdown production — a musical —<br />

the very next day, Boyd said.<br />

“We worked very closely with them so we<br />

would have the same seating protocol and<br />

all, so if people went to one, they would be<br />

very comfortable going to the other,” Boyd<br />

said. “We had seating pods of two or three<br />

seats, and then other seats would be 6-feet<br />

apart.”<br />

See THEATER, page 38<br />

COURTESY OF DANIEL RADER<br />

Allison Blackwell and Alan H. Green perform in Barrington Stage Company’s “Who Could Ask for Anything More? The<br />

Songs of George Gershwin.”<br />

COURTESY OF DANIEL RADER<br />

Alan H. Green, Alysha Umphress, Jacob Tischler, Allison Blackwell and Britney Coleman in Barrington Stage Company’s<br />

“Who Could Ask for Anything More? The Songs of George Gershwin” in 2021.<br />

The cast of Berkshire Theatre Group’s “The Wizard of Oz” performing in 2021.<br />

COURTESY OF JACEY RAE RUSSELL<br />

Corinna May in Berkshire Theatre Group’s “Shirley Valentine.”<br />

The exterior of the Colonial Theatre in <strong>Pittsfield</strong>.<br />

COURTESY OF JACEY RAE RUSSELL<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

36 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 37


THEATER, from page 36<br />

COURTESY OF EMMA K. ROTHENBERG-WARE<br />

Claire Saunders and Alanna Saunders in Berkshire Theatre Group’s “White Christmas,” in 2021.<br />

They followed “Harry Clarke” with a Rodgers<br />

and Hammerstein musical revue, and then in<br />

the summer of 2021, staged a full season of<br />

productions, with the same safety protocols<br />

in place. For indoor performances at the Main<br />

Stage, a meticulous cleaning and staging system<br />

kept everyone safe and healthy.<br />

“Last summer we did a whole season,” she said.<br />

“We did shows under a tent, and at our Main<br />

Stage theater we had two seats in between<br />

seating pods and had all the safety protocols<br />

in place, including HEPA filters, we redid<br />

our air filtration system, every night after the<br />

show we purged all the air out of the theater<br />

and brought in fresh air, and we used much<br />

more fresh air in our air conditioning. Most<br />

air conditioning systems are generally 10% to<br />

20% fresh air and the rest is recirculated air. We<br />

used 50/50.”<br />

At the end of each performance, electrostatic<br />

cleaners were used to clean every surface in<br />

See THEATER, page 39<br />

COURTESY OF JACEY RAE RUSSELL<br />

Sasha Hutchings, Najah Hetsberger, Felicia Curry and Darlesia Cearoy perform in “Nina Simone: Four Women” at the Berkshire Theatre Group in 2021.<br />

COURTESY OF EMMA K. ROTHENBERG-WARE<br />

Berkshire Theatre Group’s “Godspell” was the first musical performed live on stage in the country after the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown in 2020.<br />

THEATER, from page 38<br />

the theater, including the lobby, bathrooms and seats.<br />

“We will continue doing all this until we are told there is no more<br />

COVID,” Boyd said.<br />

BERKSHIRE THEATRE GROUP<br />

The day after Barrington Stage Company put on the first live theater<br />

production in the country after the shutdown, Berkshire Theatre Group<br />

staged the first musical.<br />

The group has four theater spaces in two different locations in Berkshire<br />

County, Kate Maguire, artistic director and CEO of Berkshire Theatre<br />

Group, said.<br />

“One campus is in Stockbridge. We have two theaters there in two<br />

buildings — the Playhouse, which is going to celebrate its 100th anniversary,<br />

which is one of the oldest theaters in the country, and the<br />

Unicorn Theatre, which is a small theater attached to the barn where<br />

we build scenery. So there is nine acres in Stockbridge with two theaters<br />

— a 300-seat space and a 120-seat space.”<br />

The second campus is in <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, Maguire said.<br />

“We have the Colonial Theatre in <strong>Pittsfield</strong>, and there is space there that<br />

is a little over 700 seats, a beautiful, renovated theater, very traditional,<br />

very similar to Broadway houses,” she said. “And then there is another<br />

space that we call The Garage that is very transformable, and we can<br />

seat 25 to 100 people and we do comedy, musicians and storytelling<br />

in that space.”<br />

The Stockbridge campus is in production mostly over the summer<br />

months, and the <strong>Pittsfield</strong> campus stages shows year-round.<br />

Like everywhere else, COVID shut them down in March 2020.<br />

“We stopped production on everything that we were working on and<br />

like the rest of the world, we went into lockdown,” Maguire said.<br />

But they were itching to get back to the live theater they love so much.<br />

“I really felt like we would be able to present something in one of<br />

our spaces — we have nine acres in Stockbridge, so I figured surely<br />

we would be able to do something outdoors, and we also have lots<br />

See THEATER, page 40<br />

The exterior of the Barrington Stage Company theater.<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

38 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 39


COURTESY OF EMMA K. ROTHENBERG-WARE<br />

Harriet Harris in the Berkshire Theatre Group’s 2021 performance of “The Importance of Being Earnest” in 2021.<br />

THEATER, from page 39<br />

of space in <strong>Pittsfield</strong> as well, and<br />

surely we can do something outdoors<br />

there as well. It wound up<br />

we had one production done in<br />

the summertime on the campus<br />

in <strong>Pittsfield</strong> in what was traditionally<br />

our parking lot, surrounded<br />

by buildings, so we were able to<br />

surround the space, with plenty<br />

of air space above.”<br />

Their first production of 2020 was<br />

the musical, “Godspell,” which ran<br />

for about a month, extending<br />

beyond its original timetable “because<br />

it was so successful,” Maguire<br />

said.<br />

“We could only have 50 people<br />

in the audience because of state<br />

regulations, but we were the only<br />

theater in the country that was<br />

sanctioned by the Actors Equity<br />

Association to present a musical,”<br />

Maguire said.<br />

Berkshire Theatre Group continued<br />

live productions in the winter<br />

— outdoors.<br />

“In December of that year we<br />

presented a piece called ‘Holiday<br />

Memories’ by Truman Capote,<br />

which is based on his short stories<br />

about a lovely woman and her experiences<br />

around Thanksgiving<br />

and Christmas, and we presented<br />

those outdoors on the grounds<br />

in Stockbridge, literally in 13- to<br />

20-degree weather,” Maguire said.<br />

“Again, the show was sold out.<br />

Those brave people turned out<br />

and it was a beautiful production.”<br />

Again, health and safety protocols<br />

were stringent, particularly<br />

in light of the fact that vaccines<br />

were not yet available.<br />

“It was all treacherous because<br />

we were performing in the middle<br />

of COVID — we were testing<br />

the actors three times a week,”<br />

she said. “They were also isolated.<br />

We had created all these bubbles<br />

— the production staff were in<br />

their own bubble, the actors were<br />

in another bubble.”<br />

CREATIVE SPIRIT<br />

Both theater groups were intent<br />

on returning live theater to their<br />

audiences. And the audiences<br />

couldn’t get enough of it.<br />

“In my mind, I get paid to do a<br />

job and I wanted to do it,” Maguire<br />

said. “I have been working in<br />

theater for a long time and I just<br />

imagined that it was possible.<br />

And indeed, I have never seen<br />

audiences so moved — at the<br />

start of every single performance,<br />

I would see the audience, their<br />

heads would drop and I would<br />

see the tears streaming over their<br />

masks because they were hearing<br />

music and hearing this story that<br />

was so inspiring. After all these<br />

years of doing theater, it was truly<br />

amazing and cathartic.”<br />

Boyd saw the same emotional response<br />

in her audiences.<br />

“There is a shared humanity in<br />

theater. You sit in the audience<br />

with a group of people and you<br />

are sharing the same experience<br />

with what is on the stage. I was so<br />

aware that people were just hunkered<br />

down in their houses, they<br />

couldn’t go out, there was such<br />

a frustration level,” she said. “And<br />

I thought, wouldn’t it be great if<br />

we could offer people, with the<br />

right safety protocols, the ability<br />

to go and see a show. And people<br />

would come to the theater and<br />

start crying — they would say<br />

they can’t believe they are here,<br />

they can’t believe there are stage<br />

lights. We had more donations<br />

given to us that summer than we<br />

have ever had.”<br />

Both theater groups worked with<br />

local and state health officials to<br />

ensure the health and safety protections<br />

were adequate and in<br />

place.<br />

“None of it was done haphazardly,”<br />

Boyd said. “Every single thing<br />

was checked out.”<br />

Bringing back live theater in the<br />

wake of a global health emergency<br />

infused the community with<br />

new spirit and showed the vitality<br />

of the creative economy in the<br />

Berkshires.<br />

“The creative economy contributes<br />

literally millions of dollars to<br />

the <strong>Pittsfield</strong> economy,” Maguire<br />

said. “Everyone that comes to our<br />

theater then goes out to eat or<br />

they go shopping. The Berkshires<br />

is a cultural destination — where<br />

else can you go in the country<br />

and find Jacob’s Pillow, Berkshire<br />

Theatre Group, Tanglewood, Barrington<br />

Stage Company — it is a<br />

mecca, a cultural resort. We ARE<br />

the economy in Berkshire County.”<br />

Building Strong<br />

Communities for<br />

175 Years<br />

Lori Kiely<br />

Regional President<br />

Berkshire County<br />

Louann Harvey<br />

Relationship Mortgage<br />

Loan Officer<br />

Becky Sorrentino<br />

MyBanker<br />

Joseph DelSoldato<br />

MyBanker<br />

Kimberly Clancy<br />

Branch Officer<br />

West Street, <strong>Pittsfield</strong><br />

Jay Bailly<br />

Business Banking<br />

Officer<br />

Matt Emprimo<br />

Commercial Banking<br />

Team Leader<br />

Jay Ogle<br />

Branch Officer<br />

<strong>Pittsfield</strong> Road, Lenox<br />

Member FDIC Rev. 10/21<br />

40 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 41


Buy • Sell • Invest<br />

With Confidence<br />

Group aims to<br />

Find Your Dream Home<br />

HarmonyEdwards.kw.com<br />

413.344.3440<br />

Facebook.com/harmonyedwards.KW/<br />

Linkedin.com/in/harmony-edwards-043b0116a<br />

Instagram.com/harmony.buys.houses/<br />

Also lets Welcome to the Team<br />

Warren C. Dews Jr.<br />

Warren has 30 years of experience in Sales, Marketing & Networking.<br />

Call him today to look into your forever home<br />

413-212-0130<br />

Wdewsjr@gmail.com<br />

License# 9569617<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

Black entrepreneurs shared ideas and gained exposure for their businesses at a September 2021 networking event that drew the mayors of both <strong>Pittsfield</strong> and North Adams.<br />

By Melanie Lekocevic<br />

Capital Region Independent Media<br />

PITTSFIELD — The vibrant and growing sector<br />

of Black-owned businesses in the Berkshires<br />

has an advocate dedicated to pushing for its<br />

success.<br />

The Berkshire Black Economic Council was<br />

formed in 2021 to support and foster Black<br />

entrepreneurs and help them build their business<br />

and visibility in the community.<br />

“The Berkshire Black Economic Council is an<br />

opportunity for Berkshire County residents<br />

who are African-American to obtain and get<br />

support that is needed in the business world,”<br />

said Shirley Ann Session Edgerton, a member<br />

of the council’s steering committee.<br />

Advocacy is particularly critical at this time, as<br />

businesses are rebounding from the impacts<br />

advance, support<br />

Black entrepreneurs<br />

of the COVID-19 pandemic that started in<br />

March 2020.<br />

“If you review statistics around who receives<br />

funds and grants in response to the impact<br />

of COVID, the numbers are really low for Black<br />

businesses,” Edgerton said. “By organizing a<br />

Black Economic Council, it provides a united<br />

front, it ensures that Black businesses have information<br />

— they have an organization that is<br />

committed to advocacy on their behalf. And<br />

it’s a good opportunity in terms of learning<br />

from each other.”<br />

Obtaining grant assistance, including recent<br />

infusions of money into the economy such<br />

as federally supported Paycheck Protection<br />

Program loans, or PPP — many of which don’t<br />

have to be paid back — issued by the U.S.<br />

Small Business Administration, has been challenging<br />

for some minority-owned businesses,<br />

Edgerton said.<br />

“I think some of it is lack of awareness — I was<br />

surprised talking to people who didn’t know<br />

that you didn’t have to take out loans, but there<br />

are other ways of getting funds, like grants,” Edgerton<br />

said. “Whether loans or grants, a lot of<br />

it is lack of information and for some people,<br />

because they have small organizations, they<br />

don’t have the capacity to write grants or have<br />

the expertise in terms of applying for loans so<br />

that often puts them in a position that they often<br />

don’t have the resources to make it work.”<br />

The Berkshire Black Economic Council offers<br />

businesses guidance in applying for financial<br />

assistance.<br />

“We guide them and if more intense help is<br />

needed, there are some who have expertise<br />

See GROUP, page 44<br />

42 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 43


and knowledge,” Edgerton said.<br />

“We also have knowledgeable<br />

organizations in the community<br />

that can support them.”<br />

In addition to providing support<br />

to current entrepreneurs, the organization<br />

also helps connect<br />

established business owners with<br />

aspiring future entrepreneurs.<br />

“We connect them to give back to<br />

the community as well, to be a resource<br />

and provide opportunities<br />

where they can share their talents<br />

and skills with others who want<br />

to be entrepreneurs who have an<br />

interest and want to learn more<br />

about business,” Edgerton said.<br />

“It’s also an opportunity for them<br />

to be representatives in the community<br />

in teaching younger folks.”<br />

Steering committee member A.J.<br />

Enchill said the council focuses<br />

on African-American businesses<br />

with the aim of broadening their<br />

opportunities. He, too, cited challenges<br />

in obtaining grant funds<br />

and support businesses were eligible<br />

for in the wake of the pandemic.<br />

“A large part of what we are trying<br />

to do is establish and meet<br />

the needs of Black businesses,”<br />

Enchill said. “For example, during<br />

COVID-19 we learned that of our<br />

entrepreneurs, over 68% of them<br />

did not receive any COVID-19 relief<br />

at all.”<br />

The Berkshire Black Economic<br />

Council looks to educate its members<br />

and the broader community,<br />

as well as helping them to overcome<br />

long ingrained obstacles.<br />

“While there is excitement and<br />

energy towards serving the Black<br />

community and advocating for<br />

the BIPOC (Black, indigenous and<br />

people of color) community at<br />

large, it still isn’t making its way<br />

to the Black entrepreneurs and<br />

the question for us is, how do we<br />

solve that and how do we address<br />

those barriers of entry?” Enchill<br />

said.<br />

Barriers can include something as<br />

simple as a Black business owner<br />

who runs their business on their<br />

personal bank and does not have<br />

a business account, creating a<br />

roadblock to obtaining an SBA<br />

grant or loan.<br />

Another barrier could be the size<br />

and scope of the business with regard<br />

to obtaining SBA assistance.<br />

“If you are asking for $500,000<br />

in sales and 10 employees, then<br />

that is not going to be criteria that<br />

some entrepreneurs are going<br />

to be able to meet,” Enchill said.<br />

“Those are the issues that we are<br />

trying to address and we are trying<br />

to break down those barriers<br />

through networking between<br />

Black businesses and the greater<br />

Berkshire business community at<br />

large.”<br />

In September, the council tried to<br />

bridge some of those relationship<br />

gaps with a networking event designed<br />

to connect Black business<br />

GROUP, from page 43 GROUP, from page 44<br />

“The Berkshire Black Economic Council is an<br />

opportunity for Berkshire County residents<br />

who are African-American to obtain and get<br />

support that is needed in the business world.”<br />

— Shirley Ann Session Edgerton,<br />

a member of the council’s steering committee<br />

A networking event in September 2021 connected Black entrepreneurs with each other and with the broader Berkshire community.<br />

See GROUP, page 45<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

owners with the broader local<br />

community.<br />

“This past September we were<br />

able to host a networking event<br />

and we were successful in getting<br />

tables for the entrepreneurs so<br />

they could get set up and really<br />

market themselves and tell their<br />

stories to the Berkshire business<br />

community,” Enchill said. “The<br />

beauty of that event was that A,<br />

it was the first time we were able<br />

to get almost 20 Black businesses<br />

under one roof and B, they were<br />

able to be celebrated and introduced<br />

to the wider Berkshire business<br />

community.”<br />

That networking event drew the<br />

mayors of both <strong>Pittsfield</strong> and<br />

North Adams, along with public<br />

officials and businesses such as<br />

the Boston Symphony Orchestra,<br />

Williams College, Tanglewood<br />

and others, he said.<br />

“Being able to shake a hand and<br />

be face to face, it’s really a great<br />

way to introduce people to one<br />

another and break what has more<br />

or less been economic segregation<br />

in the region,” Enchill said.<br />

The event provided an opportunity<br />

for Black-owned businesses to forge relationships<br />

with white-led organizations, Enchill<br />

said.<br />

“That is what has been so exciting about putting<br />

this organization together — what is has<br />

been able to quickly amplify because right<br />

now, there is still a lot of distrust between the<br />

Black business community and the public sector,”<br />

Enchill said. “Since the murder of George<br />

Floyd, there has been energy and excitement<br />

towards diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism,<br />

but you can only imagine that as a<br />

Black entrepreneur, you are somewhat skeptical<br />

as to where this is all coming from and I<br />

think folks are still not getting the resources<br />

they need, but meanwhile there is this talk of<br />

getting funds and resources in the communities<br />

that have been historically underserved.”<br />

George Floyd was an African-American man<br />

from Minnesota who was killed at the hands<br />

of police and whose death sparked a nationwide<br />

push in support of the Black Lives Matter<br />

cause.<br />

In addition to providing support and networking<br />

assistance to help African-American entrepreneurs<br />

grow their business, the council<br />

is also aiming to provide information about<br />

becoming a certified Minority Business Enterprise,<br />

or MBE.<br />

“One of our hopes is to have MBE certification<br />

education,” Enchill said. “By working with<br />

the Greater New England chapter of Supplier<br />

Diversity, we are hoping to be able to teach<br />

Black businesses about the benefits of having<br />

MBE certification. Just because you are a Black<br />

business doesn’t mean you are certified as a<br />

minority business and as a minority business,<br />

there are different supplier diversity programs<br />

that can be beneficial to the entrepreneur.”<br />

Enchill pointed to a supplier diversity program<br />

that a national pharmaceutical retailer has that<br />

encourages minority-owned beauty suppliers,<br />

such as hair and makeup companies, to get<br />

their products on the store’s shelves.<br />

“That is a missed opportunity if someone<br />

doesn’t have the MBE certification,” Enchill said.<br />

“If they are able to have their products on the<br />

shelves, they will be able to get their product<br />

out there and increase visibility, but also for<br />

revenue.”<br />

The types of businesses that have joined the<br />

council are diverse, everything from fitness<br />

trainers to landscapers, realtors, beauty supply,<br />

sports retail and more.<br />

Enchill hopes the council will help business<br />

owners build relationships with others in the<br />

Berkshire economy.<br />

“Right now, what businesses need is access to<br />

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO<br />

The Berkshire Black Economic Council provides networking opportunities, grant application assistance and support<br />

for Black-owned businesses in the area.<br />

patronage, but they also need access to listeners<br />

— folks who really want to work alongside<br />

of Black businesses, to think creatively about<br />

their solutions and solutions that would be<br />

beneficial to them in terms of grants and technical<br />

assistance,” Enchill said. “I think the typical<br />

models that we have are great, whether it’s<br />

marketing and advertising dollars, whether<br />

it’s website development, but I think there are<br />

ways we can be creative and think outside the<br />

box and find other solutions to socioeconomic<br />

barriers.”<br />

The council has also set up a subdivision, a<br />

Black Arts Council, that will look to build the<br />

creative economy, tapping into the economic<br />

potential of African-American performers, artists<br />

and customers.<br />

“We are hiring ambassadors who are locally<br />

trusted residents from the community,” Enchill<br />

said. “They will go out to the Berkshire<br />

nonprofits and cultural institutions, and also<br />

youth-based organizations, to start interviewing<br />

Black residents and visitors on their experiences<br />

and what they would wish the Berkshires<br />

would have to make them feel more<br />

included in the economy, especially the arts<br />

and cultural sector.”<br />

Arts ambassadors are asking interviewees<br />

about the types of performances and exhibits<br />

they would be interested in attending, safety<br />

measures they would like to see implemented,<br />

and how to create a general sense of belonging.<br />

“We are really doing a temperature check and<br />

working through these ambassadors who<br />

know where Black residents are,” Enchill said.<br />

“We would like to increase our numbers of survey<br />

respondents and in doing so, begin to inform<br />

the curriculum for the Berkshire culturals<br />

on how to be a better Berkshire nonprofit to<br />

reach a broader community. Ultimately, they<br />

will be able to increase their patronage and<br />

have a more diverse workforce.”<br />

Expanding and supporting Black involvement<br />

in the Berkshires’ creative economy will help<br />

the broader cultural and business community<br />

as the arts can contribute to economic development<br />

by bringing people to the area who<br />

stay in hotels, purchase gasoline, eat in local<br />

restaurants, shop and more.<br />

And when the general economy benefits from<br />

the work of both the economic council and the<br />

arts council, everyone benefits, Edgerton said.<br />

“The council benefits all — it’s a plus for the<br />

community as well as the membership of<br />

Black businesses as well as white corporations,”<br />

she said. “I think it is definitely a positive and<br />

can have a major impact on our county.”<br />

Disclosure: Warren Dews Jr., publisher and<br />

vice president of Capital Region Independent<br />

Media, is a member of the Berkshire Black Economic<br />

Council’s steering committee.<br />

44 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 45


Wedding Packages<br />

Starting at $1500<br />

Now Booking 2022 & 2023 Weddings!!<br />

Winter Dates Available In The Historic Carriage<br />

Barn Set in the picturesque Vermont countryside,<br />

Park-McCullough is regarded among the most<br />

romantic places to tie the knot.<br />

Schedule Your Champagne Tour Today!<br />

Contact, Jeanne Mintrone at Jeanne@<br />

ParkMcCullough.org or 802.379.6342<br />

1 Park Street North Bennington, VT<br />

46 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong> • 47


Official Hospital Partner of Tanglewood<br />

An<br />

Orchestra<br />

of<br />

Medical<br />

Specialties<br />

Here<br />

for You<br />

LEARN MORE AT<br />

WWW.BERKSHIREHEALTHSYSTEMS.ORG<br />

48 • <strong>Pittsfield</strong> <strong>Community</strong> <strong>Guidebook</strong>

Hooray! Your file is uploaded and ready to be published.

Saved successfully!

Ooh no, something went wrong!