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Shima Moves To Larger Location

Andy McKeever

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Shima, the downtown children and maternity store, has expanded.

The store is nearly double the size by moving down the street to 65 Main St. The new location opened Wednesday after six weeks of painting and building shelves in preparation with 500 additional square feet of floor space, according to owners Suzy Helme and Libbie Pike.

Expansion was a year away in the owners' minds until the duo received an offer to rent the former Sports Corner location at a "good price."

"We couldn't really pass it up," Helme said.

The space was renovated by the pair with material left behind in the space, supplies they had laying around and customer donations. The store has all new shelving and a new floor.

On Wednesday a few boxes were being unpacked and the sign for the Gallery 51 annex still hung over the storefront but customers still found their way in. A small chalkboard out front advertised the new location. By the afternoon, the old sign was removed and the owners said they will soon be moving the handcrafted sign from the old location as well as building another one.

"We reused a lot of stuff from Sports Corner," Pike said.

Shima was closed Sunday through Tuesday so the owners could move. There is still some inventory that needs to be moved down the street, the owners said.

Tags: Shima, moving      

Santa's Spending Time In Downtown North Adams

Andy McKeever

 

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. – The elves may be busy in the North Pole but Santa Claus is spending his days on Main Street.

Standing in front of ATEF Fine Jeweler, Santa can be seen handing out candy canes and waving to cars.
 
“It’s so great to see the kids happy,” Santa said. “This is my first year out here."
 
Though he does receive a small stipend from the jeweler, the money is not the reason he stands on the street from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. each day.
 
“I’m having fun. You’re never too big for Christmas,” he said while cars beep horns at him and a woman reminds him that she has been good all year. 
 
He began on Tuesday and will be out there every day until Christmas Eve. Christmas Eve will be an early day, he said. Of course, he has to get back to the North Pole.
 
Santa enjoys North Adams so much, he said he might return next year too.
Tags: Santa, North Adams, Main Street, Christmas      

Good Grief, Charlie Brown! You're a Winner

Staff Reports
Doug and Manna Mason of the Party Place on Eagle Street hold up the gift certificates they won for the best-dressed holiday window. We caught them at supper in the new Desperados.

The Hometown Holidays' best-window contest resulted in not two, but three winners on Thursday night.

Manna Mason of the Party Place on Eagle Street won a night for two at the Porches and dinner at Gramercy Bistro for her Charlie Brown Christmas-themed windows.

The judges (Mayor Richard Alcombright, Rep. Daniel E. Bosley and Mass MoCA director Joseph Thompson) were quite taken with the fetching illustrations on the Party Place that were painted like stained glass. Thompson in particular liked the three-dimensional effect created by the grids inside the windows.

That's about as evocative as the judges were about the more than two dozen businesses and shops that decked their halls — and windows — with cheery and bright displays. Alcombright did step into nearly every open storefront to at least say hello. (Though our boasting over our own lovely windows fell on deaf ears.)

After the judges perused the windows, pointing out particularly interesting pieces, they graded each display based on creativity, effort, holiday festivity, wow factor and overall look. The Party Place was followed closely by I Got Goodies in second and Petrino's Cafe in third.

The runners-up, however, didn't lose out. They were the favorites of the more than 60 shoppers who voted; possibly their proximity to each other played a role, but the wins were well deserved. Both shops have some serious eye candy in the windows, literally in I Got Goodies' case. 

Colleen Taylor of Taylor's Restaurant graciously offered a second gift certificate so both Mark Petrino of Petrino's Cafe and Janice Esoldi of I Got Goodies received a prize for People's Choice.

"It was definitely a success," said Jonathan Secor of MCLA's Gallery 51 and the Berkshire Cultural Resource Center. "It's a beginning ... It was great to see the lights and all the effort and everything. ... It looks like there's life on the street."

Janice Esoldi of I Got Goodies and Mark Petrino of Petrino's Cafe won People's Choice.

 

 

 

Tags: Hometown Holidays, shopping, contest      

Decoration Day

Staff Reports

Quiet carolers are caught midnote in the iBerkshires window.

Anyone who's been downtown lately has noticed the spirit of the season on full display.

Storefronts have been blazing with lights, decorated with trees and Christmas balls, snowflakes and Santas, giant nutcrackers and all kinds of interesting merchandise.

On Thursday night, downtown shoppers will have the chance to decide which is the best.

The decorating idea sprang up during meetings held earlier this fall by downtown merchants to promote the "Buy Local" campaign locally. (Members pointedly reminded those on the "shady side" of the street to dress up, too. And we have, just you see!) To encourage participation, the group decided to create a contest for the best window and offer a prize.

Judges will be perusing the city's best-dressed windows at this week's Hometown for the Holidays event on Thursday night to select the storefront with the best holiday spirit. Since judges' choices rarely please everyone, downtown patrons will decide the People's Choice.

The contest is part of the Hometown Holidays events that kicked off with the tree lighting on Thanksgiving Eve and has continued on the traditional Thursday shopping nights. Merchants and restaurants have been offering specials and discounts; the Mystery Shopper has also returned after decades of absence to lure shoppers downtown with the promise of gift certificates.

This Thursday, celebrity judges Mayor Richard Alcombright, Rep. Daniel E. Bosley and Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art Executive Director Joseph C. Thompson will be peeking in windows of participating businesses around Main, Holden and Eagle streets beginning at 5.

The judges will announce their choice at 6 p.m. at Petrino's Cafe. The winner gets a night at the Porches and dinner at Gramercy Bistro.

Then the public gets to weigh in. Local stores and volunteers with the Berkshire Cultural Resource Center will have contest forms available beginning at 5; get them back to Petrino's by 6:45 for the People's Choice winner to be announced at 7. The winner gets dinner for two at Taylor's.

While you're downtown, don't just look at the windows, step into the shops and check out the merchandise. Most stores will be open until 9 so there's plenty of time after the contest to circle back to that must-have item.

Tags: Hometown Holidays, shopping, contest      

Lights, Cameras, Action

Staff Reports
The new, massive mast-arm traffic lighting has been going up around the downtown area for the past couple weeks. When the new system comes online, the very visible cameras will be able to detect traffic waiting to enter the intersections and change the lights accordingly. A small bubble light at the intersection of Main Street and American Legion Drive will go on when fire vehicles turn onto Main.

The lights, part of the $3.2 million streetscape project, are designed to smooth the flow of traffic and increase safety. The cameras aren't recording anything but could be hooked into a recording system at the Department of Public Safety at a later time.
Tags: traffic      
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Voting Registration Deadlines

:: Preliminary Election: Deadline to register is Wednesday, Sept. 7. (Office open from 8 to 8.)
:: General Election: Deadline to register is Tuesday, Oct. 18

Registration can be completed at the city clerk's office at City Hall.

Absentee ballots are now available at the city clerk's office for the Sept. 27 preliminary city election. Voters may come in between the hours of 8 and 4:30 weekdays. Written reguests for mailed ballots can be sent to City Clerk's Office, 10 Main St., North Adams, MA 01247. Deadline for absentee ballots is Monday, Sept. 26, at noon.

The preliminary election will be held Tuesday, Sept. 27, to narrow the field of three mayoral candidates to two. The general election to select nine city councilors and a mayor will be held Tuesday, Nov. 8.


 

City Council

Returned Papers
As of 8/9 at 5 p.m.
 Lisa M. Blackmer* Yes
 Michael Bloom Yes
 Keith Bona* Yes
 David Bond* Yes
 Marie Harpin* Yes
 Alan Marden* Yes
 John Barrett Yes
 Eric R. Buddington Yes
 Nancy P. Bullett Yes
 Robert Cardimino Yes
 Catherine Chaput Yes
 Roland G. Gardner  
 Diane M. Gallese-Parsons  Yes
Shane Gaudreau  
 James B. Gyurasz  Yes
 Michael Hernandez  Yes
 Jennifer Breen Kirsch  Yes
Brian L. Flagg  
 Kellie A. Morrison  Yes
 Greg Roach  Yes
 Gail Kolis Sellers  Yes
18 candidates returned papers
 
 Mayor  
 Richard J. Alcombright*  Yes
 Ronald A. Boucher  Yes
 Robert Martelle  Yes
 Preliminary election will eliminate one
 
 School Committee  
 Mary Lou Accetta* Yes
 Lawrence K. Taft* Yes
 Leonard Giroux Jr.  Yes
 Tara J. Jacobs  Yes
 David Lamarre Yes
   
McCann School Committee  
 George M. Canales Yes

Polling stations

St. Elizabeth's Parish Center

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Ward 2
Ward 3
Ward 5

Greylock Elementary School

Ward 4


Draft Budget FY2012

School Budget FY2012

Compensation Plan

Classification Schedule 

Fiscal 2011 Budget

Fiscal 2011 Tax Classification

North Adams Audit 2010

North Adams Single Audit 2010

North Adams Management Letters 2010

North Adams School Building Options



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