From playable pianos to bolstering member to tweaking the parking system, Downtown Pittsfield Inc. has a lot of ahead of it for this summer.
The organization delivered its annual report to the City Council on Tuesday. The organization has gone through some changes in the last year or so. It hired a new director, Cheryl Mirer, and the city had changed its director of community development, which serves as the point of contact with the city.
Organized by the city of Pittsfield's Office of Cultural Development and Barrington Stage Company, the festival features 66 events in 12 different venues, highlighting dozens of artists, actors, musicians, playwrights and performers.
Cheryl Mirer remembers driving from Otis to the city to go on art walks, volunteer with Berkshire Creative, or sell crafts at the Handmade Holiday Festival.
And those memories seemed to come back a lot in the last year or so, when she was searching for a way to get back here from Potsdam, N.Y. Mirer had moved there in 2013 and was working in the development office at Clarkson University while her husband managed a co-operative food market.
The Berkshires has a niche when it comes to scenic beauty and cultural institutions that other places can't replicate.
The city's downtown is has placed those two aspects as cornerstones to economic development. At Downtown Pittsfield Inc.'s annual meeting Thursday morning, businesses who have helped expand in those areas were honored for their efforts.
Dropping the speed limit on North Street to 25 miles-per-hour may not seem like a big deal on its own. But, that is just one of many initiatives Downtown Pittsfield Inc. has taken on to improve the downtown.
The speed reduction was approved by the City Council Tuesday night in an effort to improve vehicle and pedestrian safety. But Tuesday was also the same night Downtown Pittsfield Inc. provided an annual report, outlining its initiatives.