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Ferrin Gallery in Pittsfield Being Sold at Auction

Staff Reports
iBerkshires

The building at 433 North St. is being auctioned off in April.

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Ferrin Gallery building at 433-439 North St. will be auctioned off at foreclosure on Tuesday, April 9, at 11 a.m.

Gallery has reportedly closed and moved to Cummington.

The gallery operated by Leslie Ferrin opened on North Street in 2007, after five years in Lenox, with much fanfare as a symbol of the city's resurgence through the creative economy.

Ferrin and business partner Donald Clark put the building on the market in early 2011 for $350,000, but she told The Berkshire Eagle on Wednesday that there have been no offers and the building was no longer "an effective use of our funds."

Back in 2011, in an interview with BerkshireFineArts.com, Ferrin said the gallery was no longer a central aspect for her business, saying "The biggest reason is that the business is growing in a different direction: Expanded partnerships, art fairs, and managing the artists' careers that are growing internationally."

The North Street building includes two commercial/condominium spaces on the first floor (Units 102 and 103), one of which was occupied by Ferrin Gallery, and 15 other units. The gallery was the only tenant in the buiding. The property was listed as "The 433 North Condominium Complex."

The mortgage holder is People's United Bank and Aaron Posnik Auctioneers will manage the auction.

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Williamstown Broker Joins Burnham Gold Real Estate

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Kim Burnham and Rebecca Gold have announced the expansion of Burnham Gold Real Estate with the addition of Tom Elder.  

Established in April 2011, Burnham Gold is located at 191 Water St. and focuses on residential, commercial, land and rental properties.

Elder, a longtime real estate broker with Elder and Associates, joined the firm as of March 18. A resident of Williamstown, he is a past president of the Northern Berkshire YMCA and past board member of Northern Berkshire Regional Hospital.  

He has also served on both the Board of Realtors and the Board of Multiple Listing Services. He enjoys working with sellers and buyers of residential homes, land, and commercial real estate and brings a wealth of local knowledge as well as real estate expertise.

Burnham Gold representatives said they are very excited to have Elder as part of their real estate team.

For more information, call 413-458-0093.

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North Adams City Hall Seeking Part-Time Planner

Staff Reports
iBerkshires

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The city is looking for a part-time planner to help with the completion of the master plan and in implementing it.

Mayor Richard Alcombright had stated his intention last month to fill the post as soon as possible. He said a planner will be essential to bringing the city's zoning and ordinances into alignment with the master plan and in researching and writing grants.

The city hasn't had a master plan in some 40 years. The mayor has said he wants to put economic and community development in the forefront, and putting more support into the community development office will be necessary to achieve the master plan's goals.

The city hopes to use the comprehensive plan to access state and federal grant funding for projects. The position itself will be funded in part by Community Block Grant Funding. The salary is negotiable, according to the posting.

The job is listed as being 20 hours at first, with the likelihood of growing into a permanent full-time position with the next year. The individual will work with Community Development Director Michael Nuvallie.

According to job posting on BerkshireJobs.com, the planner will be expected to coordinate with the city's Planning and Zoning boards and take on addditional responsibility of projects including "neighborhood revitalization strategies, economic development planning, and bike path planning."

The candidate needs a master's degree in planning or five years in a relevant profession, and preferrably experience with a wide range projects, from enerty efficiency to trail planning to GIS mapping. Deadline to apply is April 5.

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North Adams Verizon Store Under New Ownership

By Andy McKeever
iBerkshires Staff

The Main Street business in now under new management.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Wireless Zone, an authorized Verizon Wireless store on Main Stree,t has new owners, who are looking to expand inventory and remodel the showroom.

On Friday, owners Nate Bastarache and Keith Parzych moved into their new store after buying the business. The North Adams location is the fifth Bastarache will own and second in the Berkshires.

Over the next two weeks, the store will still be open but the owners will be completely overhauling the interior. The store will be a fully staffed, with five to six employees, open seven days a week and carry all Verizon products, including Apple products.

"We are remodeling with all brand-new fixtures and equipment. We're going to stock everything Verizon has to offer," Bastarache said.

They were even open Friday despite their inventory arriving late in the afternoon. The store may install a new exterior sign after receiving approval from the city.

Bastarache also opened the Verizon Wireless store in Great Barrington and when the opportunity to buy the North Adams store presented itself four months ago, he jumped on it.

"I love it [in the Berkshires]. I wanted a store on the other side of the county," he said. "There was the need and opportunity in North Adams."

Bastarache worked with Parzych for 12 years in the auto industry. After being frustrated with the customer service, he was receiving with wireless stores, he opened his first Verizon Wireless store in Easthampton. Shortly after, he opened another store in Northampton, followed by Chicopee and last year in Great Barrington. He reunited with Parzych to partner in purchasing the North Adams location.

He said the key to making the business thrive is good customer service and having the items in stock. All of the showroom products will be "live" for customers to "basically test drive the device" and at least two staffers will be on at all times, he said, including either himself of Parzych.

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North Adams Walmart Hiring for New Supercenter

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Walmart is holding a job fair on Wednesday, March 6, to hire for the new Walmart Supercenter being constructed on Curran Highway.

The company is expected to hire some 85 associates. According to store manager Alexis Bartos, the openings will be for both full- and part-time associates.

Previous reports put the total number of workers needed for the new 160,000 square foot structure at about 300. The more than 170 employees at the current store, also on Curran Highway, were to move to the new location without having to reapply for their jobs.

"We are excited that relocating our store will bring additional jobs with great career opportunities to the area," said Bartos.

The new Supercenter is twice the size of the current Walmart and includes a grocery, deli, bakery, expanded electronics section, garden center, pharmacy and vision center.

The hiring event will take place Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the existing store located at 830 Curran Highway.

Walmart said it provides a benefits program to eligible full- and part-time associates, including a variety of health and well-being benefits. Walmart also offers eligible associates matching 401(k) contributions of up to 6 percent of pay, discounts on general merchandise, an Associate Stock Purchase Program and company-paid life insurance. Additionally, eligible associates receive a quarterly incentive based on store performance.

The majority of new associates will begin work in April to help prepare the store for its grand opening.

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