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Buy in the Berkshires Expo Coming
By: Staff Reports On: 01:52PM / Wednesday May 19, 2010

This year's Buy in the Berkshires Expo will be held on June 23, from 3 to 8 p.m., once again at Jiminy Peak Ski Resort.

The initiative was launched last year as a way to encourage residents to explore the many products and services available in the county. The expo also acted as a networking event for industries ranging from hospitality to printing to cultural venues to retail outlets to demonstrate their capabilities to each other.

Some 1,000 people attended last year's inaugural expo.

Both indoor and outdoor booths are available; Berkshire Chamber member rates are $125 for a 6-foot table and $175 for an 8-foot table.

The premier sponsor for this event is Greylock Federal Credit Union. Sponsorship opportunities at a different level are also possible. For more information, call 413-3499-4000, Ext. 26, for more information. Sponsors will be given great exposure before, during and after the event.

Click here for an application and site maps.

Tags: Buy in the Berkshires      
Professional Women 'Getting Even' At Jae's
By: Staff Reports On: 10:36AM / Friday May 14, 2010

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Business and Professional Women will present its second annual "Getting Even Jam" as 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 20, at Jae's Spice on North Street as part of downtown Pittsfield's first Third Thursday of the season.

The event celebrates Equal Pay Day, a day set aside on a Tuesday in April that aims to raise awareness of the gap between men's and women's wages. Latest Census statistics show that the gap between men's and women's earnings widened slightly between 2007 and 2008, from 77.8 to 77 percent. Based on the median earnings of full-time, year-round workers, women's earnings were $35,745 and men's earnings were $46,367.

The Getting Even Jam will feature the music of Code Blue. Code Blue is made up of school teacher Scott Ellis and chiropractor Kurt Schagen, who have been playing together for more than 12 years. In their current incarnation as Code Blue, they present a unique combination as an energetic musical duo which can transition from acoustic music, to a full band sound using midi technology.

Tickets are $15 and include music and hors d'oeuvres. All proceeds will go to local working women who wish to continue their education.

For more information, call 413-443-3577 or e-mail

Tags: BBPW      
Rotary Fashion Show Pairs Chemises With Charity
By: By Nichole Dupont On: 04:58PM / Wednesday May 12, 2010

GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Jodphurs are in this season. So are tribal prints, recycled bamboo and medallion sandals.

All of this and much more was on display at Great Barrington Rotary Club's 2nd annual spring fashion show and auction held at Crissey Farm on Friday night. More than 80 people, among them the who's who of Great Barrington retailers, enjoyed an evening of Mediterranean munchies, mineral make-up and, of course, haute couture by Wearhouse, Mainstreet, T.P. Saddleblanket and Great Barrington Bra and Girl.

"It's a win-win situation," said Doone Marshall, owner of Body and Soul. "We want to be a presence here. These people do wonderful things for the community. It's really the best form of advertising."

There was no shortage of wares (or wears) at the show. Tables representing local businesses were laden with goods. Glass jewelry by Saskia Larraz glinted alongside pink lip stain offered by Facehaven. In addition to items for sale, the silent auction offered a plethora of local highlights including tickets, handbags, spa treatments and several nights out on the town, all in the spirit of giving.

"The Rotary really doesn't talk about what we're doing in the community," said President Elizabeth Hamilton. "We just do it."

Lingerie helped the Great Barrington Rotary raise funds.

Indeed the club has many irons in the charitable fire. The fashion show joins other annual Rotary Club fundraisers (Tri-State Bowling Tournament, pancake breakfasts and the Drive for Scholarship Golf Tournament) to benefit local organizations such as Fairview Commons, Construct Inc. and the Railroad Street Youth Project to name a few. Additionally the club gives away more than $40,000 a year in scholarships for area high school students.

Jane Iredale, founder and owner of Iredale Mineral Cosmetics Inc. that sponsored both this and last year's show, made a humble nod toward generosity before announcing the looks of the evening.

"I feel very honored to be asked to do this," she said.

Amid camera flashes and delicious desserts, models wended their way through a mesmerized crowd, flaunting bright colors and the latest in Berkshire fashion. Setting the tone (literally) for the evening was the Great Barrington Bra and Girl collection, which emphasized soft, draping loungewear in coral hues.

"It's very Cape Cod, very beachy," said GBBG co-owner April Burch. "The color is a rich coral; the first bud of summer."

The T.P. Saddleblanket collection intermixed with the coral with splashes of deep turquoise set against flowing faux suede. The effect was a look rooted in American Indian culture and design. In fact, many looks at the show paid tribute to tribal designs. Models from Wearhouse strutted dramatic black and white printed Ikat tank tops as well as flowing silk halter dresses in fuchsia and coral. Shoe styles ranged from shiny patent-leather equestrian boots to medallion encrusted, high-heeled sandals, providing a little something for every fashion taste in the room.

"There are definitely more men here this year," Burch said. "I wonder if it has anything to do with the lingerie."


Tags: Great Barrington, Rotary, fashion      
SABIC Volunteers Seek Community Project
By: Staff Reports On: 04:13PM / Tuesday May 11, 2010

We got this through the Berkshire Chamber's e-blast. Nice to know that SABIC is following the long tradition of GE employees helping in the community:

SABIC Innovative Plastics is seeking proposals from Berkshire County not-for-profit organizations for collaborative projects that have community involvement and impact. 

We are looking for indoor or outdoor projects that focus on environmental stewardship and/or enhance educational experiences in the areas of science, technology, or innovation.

Projects must be completed in one day with a collaborative volunteer force of ideally 25 to 60
mostly unskilled but hardworking – SABIC Innovative Plastics volunteers. Funding assistance is also available.

Organizations interested in applying for a community project can review the guidelines and proposal submission process online, or can pick up a printed copy at the 1 Plastics Ave. gate entrance.

E-mail questions to No phone calls please.

Tags: SABIC      
Morningside Initiative Hosting Neighborhood Business Group
By: Staff Reports On: 03:32PM / Tuesday May 04, 2010

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Morningside Initiative is hosting a meeting of the Tyler Street Business Group on Tuesday, May 11, at 7:30 a.m. at the Pittsfield Economic Development Authority office, 81 Kellogg St. 

The purpose of the meeting is to give support to the business community on Tyler Street and Dalton Avenue, and to give them a voice in shaping the future of their community by helping promote its positive attributes, while increasing quality of life.

The Pittsfield Police Department and city councilors will be in attendance to answer questions. This meeting is open to anyone who runs a business on Tyler Street and Dalton Avenue. The Morningside Initiative's mission is to preserve and restore the integrity of the neighborhood and empower residents. 

Tags: Tyler Street Business Group, Pittsfield, Morningside Initiative      
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News Headlines
Tyer, Bianchi Set Priorities in West Side Initiative Debate
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Cheshire Fire Department Treasurer Accused of Larceny
Pittsfield Housing Authority: Worcester's Program Not A Fit Here
Lanesborough FinCom Continues Discussion On School Funding
North Adams Fire Department Opens Doors To Public
Clarksburg Voters to Decide School Feasibility Funding
Pittsfield Approves Renaming Pitt Park For Reverand Durant
Heating Leak Causes Thursday Closure at Williamstown Elementary
North Adams Happenings: Oct. 7-13


Bill Schmick separates the bull from the bears in his weekly columns on investing and market wrap-ups.

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