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For the 2017-2018 season, the CDC recommends use of the flu shot (inactivated influenza vaccine or IIV) or the recombinant influenza vaccine (RIV). (Photo courtesy CDC)

Health Alliance Offering Flu Vaccinations

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Public Health Alliance will offer flu vaccination clinics with no out-of-pocket charges around the county over the next month.

People should bring their insurance card(s) with them and wear short sleeves, or a shirt that has easily rolled-up sleeves.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends getting an annual flu vaccine as the first and best way to protect yourself and your family from the flu. Flu vaccination can reduce flu illnesses, doctors' visits, and missed work and school due to flu, as well as prevent flu-related hospitalizations. In 2017, a study in Pediatrics was the first of its kind to show that flu vaccination also significantly reduced a child's risk of dying from influenza. The more people who get vaccinated, the more people will be protected from flu, including older people, very young children, pregnant women, and people with certain long-term health conditions who are more vulnerable to serious flu complications.

The Berkshire Public Health Alliance (Alliance) is a partnership formed through an inter-municipal agreement (IMA) among the 24 Berkshire municipalities of Adams, Alford, Becket, Cheshire, Clarksburg, Dalton, Egremont, Florida, Great Barrington, Hancock, Lanesborough, Mount Washington, New Marlborough, North Adams, Peru, Pittsfield, Richmond, Sandisfield, Savoy, Sheffield, Washington, West Stockbridge, Williamstown, Windsor and Berkshire Regional Planning Commission. Learn more on the website.

The clinics are as follows:

Monday, Sept. 25, 3:30-6:30 p.m.:
Craneville Elementary School, 71 Park Ave., Dalton

Tuesday, Sept. 26, 9-11:30 a.m.: Egremont Town Hall, 171 Egremont Plain Road, Egremont
Monday, Oct. 2, 1-3 p.m.: Cheshire Senior Center/Cheshire Community Center, 119 School St., Cheshire

Monday, Oct. 2, 5-7 p.m.: Windsor Town Hall, 1927 Route 9, Windsor

Wednesday, Oct. 4, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.: Clarksburg Elementary School, 777 West Cross Road, Clarksburg

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.: City Hall, 10 Main St., North Adams

Wednesday, Oct. 11, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Housatonic Community Center (Housydome), 1064 Main St. North, Housatonic

Wednesday, Oct. 11, 4:30-6:30 p.m.: Great Barrington Town Hall, 334 Main St., Great Barrington

Friday, Oct. 13, 11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Dalton Senior Center 40 Field St. Ext., Dalton

Monday, Oct. 16, 5-7 p.m.: Town Hall, 8 Summit Hill Road, Washington

Tuesday, Oct. 17, 3:30-6 p.m.: Greylock Elementary School, 100 Phelps Ave., North Adams

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 9:30-11 a.m.: Mary Spitzer Senior Center, 116 Ashland St., North Adams

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 3:30-6 p.m.: Drury High School, 1130 Church St., North Adams

Monday, Oct. 23, 4-6 p.m.: Peru Town Hall Community Room, 3 East Main Road, Peru

Saturday, Oct. 28, 9 a.m.-noon: Berkshire South CHP Coat Drive, 15 Crissey Road, Great Barrington.

Tags: flu,   influenza,   

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Hinsdale Man To Compete In Professional BBQ Competition

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Rinaldi with Myron Mixon, celebrity chef and four-time barbecue World Champion.
HINSDALE, Mass. — Professional barbecue teams from all over New England will compete at the Harpoon BBQ Festival in Windsor, Vt., on July 27-28, with hopes of being crowned the grand champion and earning a ticket to the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue. 
And Berkshire County's own George Rinaldi will be among them.
Rinaldi, 54, of Hinsdale, has been competing on the professional Kansas City Barbecue Society-sanctioned circuit for eight years. He and his family travel to six or seven competitions annually. They've been all over New England, as well as in New Jersey, Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas. At a typical event, competitors must deliver their entries in four categories (chicken, ribs, pork and brisket) to the master judges by pre-specified times — and not a second later.
Rinaldi's skills have earned many trophies, including a first-place prize for his Ribs Division win at a recent competition in New Jersey. 
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