Parts of that hole, however, could be filled by the inspiring and uplifting words of the speakers who came to the podium on Friday to share what the idea of "building community" — the theme of the meeting, complete with a Lego brick motif and cake — meant to them.
Nancy Wagman, the Kids Count director of the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, gave a presentation to the more than 100 guests gathered at Berkshire Hills Country Club on Friday that went back in time to show when and how poverty started winning the war that President Lyndon Johnson declared on it in the 1960s.
Something new, something old, and something colorful.
The awards given out at Downtown Pittsfield Inc.'s annual meeting this year represented a range of what has been happening in the downtown, whether that be the efforts of those behind Berkshire Pride Festival which brings nearly a thousand people to the common or Carr Hardware's 90 years of business to the First Friday Arts Walk that continually drives foot traffic.
In November, officers were sent to Cherry Street for a call of suspicious activity.
The officers received information about a potential vehicle but nothing was immediately in the area. Officer John Virgilio kept it in mind and later in the day he saw it. The officer tracked it down and with Officers Edward Pezze, Michael Lupisella, Michael Silver, and Matthew Killeen. There were four individuals from Springfield in the vehicle, one had an arrest warrant, and search of the car found a firearm
Tracy Rougeau McConnell was presented the Spirit of the Future Award; Dianne Cutillo and Bernie Pinsonnault with the Spirit of Community Award; and Specialty Minerals Inc. the Campaign of the Year award and its longtime campaign coordinator Leon "Butch" Parrott was recognized.
The Selectmen honored the entire team before their usual meeting Wednesday and presented the players and coaches with certificates marking their historic 66-49 victory over St. Mary's of Lynn on Saturday.
After 28 years on the Fire Department, Deputy Chief Michael Polidoro had to retire after being diagnosed with ALS.
He had been a key member of leadership in the department and was viewed as a mentor by most. While he won't jump into the engine when a call comes in, Polidoro's legacy will.
After a morning of community service Monday on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, those who took the day on instead of the day off met at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts to recognize local community leader and addiction assistance advocate Kenna Waterman.
Those with autism, and for brain injured and the developmentally challenged should be treated just like everybody else and BC Arc tried to do just that.
Through numerous programs throughout the county, BC Arc doesn't just provide support and advocacy for those people, they work hard to integrate them back into the world.
Welch, a popular teacher and for 19 years director of Mount Greylock's spring musical, was chosen from among the pool of public and private secondary teachers in Berkshire and Franklin Counties, the New York counties of Columbia and Dutchess, and Connecticut's Litchfield County.
Stacia Bissell's parents always made a family camping trip to the White Mountains in New Hampshire.
Some 16 years ago, a neighbor, Dan Doyle, asked her father where the goes every year. It didn't take long before both families combined their camping trips and the tradition continued. When Bissell's daughter Jackie was 15 years old on the family trip she met Doyle's nephew Erik Twombly and fell in love.
Most of the community leaders in the central Berkshires knows Manny Slaughter now.
They know him now from hours upon hours of volunteer time he puts in every summer, with a smile on his face, running a basketball program for the area's youth. They know him now from thousands of Pittsfield children he's taken under his wing. They know him now as a mentor and a role model. They know Slaughter now as a shining star in the Pittsfield community.
Nelson's work on that project and his inspiration within the community in leading by example won't be forgotten. During a tribute on Monday night for Nelson, who died in July at age 83, the pantry's new name was revealed as the Al Nelson Friendship Center.
Mark Shapp knows his way around, whether that be City Hall or a train.
And Shapp is happy to share his knowledge with anyone. In the last decade, he's volunteered 4,316 of his hours to do just that. In the last year, he's spent 629 hours volunteering as the City Hall ambassador and with the Berkshire Scenic Railway.
Berkshire Family YMCA's inaugural Changing Lives After 55 awards will celebrate and recognize community members over the age of 55 who have made significant contributions and achievements in Berkshire County.