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Wanted: Poster For Pittsfield Parade 2011

Staff Reports
The Pittsfield 4th of July Parade Committee is looking for a local artist to create the annual parade poster.

The theme for 2011 is "Pittsfield — 250 Years, Past, Present, Future"

Please send Pittsfield Parade a sketch of your idea for the 2011 poster by Nov. 1, 2010 at pittsfieldparade@aol.com. The artist will be notified by Dec. 1.

Finished poster must be in acrylics on 18-inch by 24-inch jessoed masonite, and must be submitted by March 1, 2011.
There is a $500 award, and the poster becomes the property of the Pittsfield Parade Committee to use as a fundraiser.

Questions, call 413-447-7763.
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Richmond Bids Farewell to Building Inspector

Staff Reports

RICHMOND, Mass. — The town will be bidding a final farewell Friday to its building inspector, Walter S. Potash.

Potash died Sept. 1 at his Lee home at age 77. His funeral will be held on Friday, Sept. 10, at 10 a.m. at St. Peter's Church in Great Barrington. There were no calling hours scheduled.

The Pittsfield High School gradutate had owned A & P Builders during the 1970s. He'd been the inspector for Richmond for the past seven years and had also been a building inspector for Lanesborough and Monterey. He was a member of the Building Officials of Western Massachusetts.

Potash had worked for many years at the former GE in Pittsfield. He'd lived in Great Barrington before moving to Lee in 2002. He loved animals and nature, particularly feeding wildlife, so family has asked that contributions in his memory be made to the Berkshire Humane Society in care of Dery Funeral Home, 54 Bradford St., Pittsfield.

Staffing at the Richmond Town Hall will limited Friday morning because many employees will be attending the service. The town is arranging for an interim inspector until a permanent one can be appointed.

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Williams Tops With Forbes, Unigo

Staff Reports

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — You know fall's around the corner when the inevitable lists of the best schools start appearing. And, inevitably, the Williams College is on them.

This month, Williams' selection as one of the "New Ivies" by college-rater Unigo.com comes on the heel's of its top ranking as America's best college by Forbes Magazine.

The private liberal arts institution, and the second-oldest college in the state after Harvard, has been a perennial top-lister in various "best of" lists, including U.S. News and World Report's annual rankings. Forbes ranked Williams as No. 4 last year; this year, it popped to the top, beating out archrival Amherst at No. 3.

Forbes ranks colleges on academics and students' experiences and achievements. Unigo.com's rankings are similar and it gleans all of its information directly from students. The site offers information to help collegebound students choose the right school. The list of "The New Ivies" is among the site's "10 for 10" that includes ranking for the 10 safest, best party, most intellectual and sports.

The information culled from some 30,000 respondents placed Williams among the New Ivies with Duke and Johns Hopkins for its low student-instructor ratio, communal atmosphere and emphasis on academic experience over grades.

Williamstown is isolated. But the athletic, outdoorsy and social students don’t seem to mind spending time on campus together. 'We come here for the academics, and for one another.' That, in a nutshell, is Williams' largest selling point.

 

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Williamstown Steeple on eBay

Staff Reports

As you've probably already heard, the St. Raphael's steeple has been posted on eBay. The church's pride has structural issues and a decision was made to remove while the building and nearby rectory are transformed into affordable housing units.

There was the idea of simply setting it aside, like giant lawn ornament, but the commitee working with developer David Carver didn't warm to the idea. Thus, like so many tchotkes and oddities, the steeple found itself on eBay. Here's the link.

It's a great opportunity for a buying a "once in a lifetime" deal, says the description.

Get ready ... because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. We are please to offer a real life part of Western New England history ... What a wonderful piece of architectural history to own ... pour a concrete slab and enjoy it for a lifetime.

The minimum bid is $1,000 but with 39 hours to go, no one's bid on it. The auction ends on Aug 22 at 5:55:13 a.m. Pacific Daylight Time, or 2:55:13 a.m. our time. The local pickup requirement would certainly lessen the number of (any?) interested buyers - it would be pretty pricey to ship since it weighs in at five to six tons. We found one freight calculator that came up with $3,500 to ship it to 90210 (since we figured someone in that ZIP could easily afford it).

The removal and loading on a flatbed are included, so that's a nice incentive. And where else can you get a church steeple like it? On the other hand, it's just the slate-covered spire and not the more architecturally interesting belfry beneath it.

If a steeple won't fit at your house but you're still looking for some Williamstown history, there's elements of the Kalker House still available at the ReStore in Springfield. The beautiful doorway taken from the home (demolished to make way for the Clark Art Institute's new entrance) can be picked up for $2,000. It's twice the price as the steeple but we're thinking a lot easier to get home.

Update: The auction ended Saturday night with no bids; we haven't seen it relisted.

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Wilco Delivers Solid Set, Hints at Return to MoCA

Staff Reports

Wilco worked a sensational 2 1/2 hour set Saturday night at Mass MoCA's Joe Field. Lead singer Jeff Tweedy thanked the thousands in attendance (official number of tickets sold have yet to be released by event organizers):

"Thanks for letting us take over your town, or at least part of it," he said.

The freight train could be heard during one of Wilco's songs, and Tweedy quipped:

"You guys hear that train go by? We made that happen. It's part of our installation."

Tweedy also got the fans involved, letting the masses sing the first two verses to "Jesus, Etc." He said it was one of the top three renditions he's ever heard from an audience.

The band's frontman also made reference to coming back next year, which garnered a huge roar from the crowd.

Still plenty more to come Sunday on the third and final day of the Solid Sound Festival. Keep it here at iBerkshires.com for more coverage.

 

 

 

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