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Repairs being made to the portals on the sides of the Notre Dame steeple on Friday. The work is being financed through a matching state preservation grant.

Repairs Being Done on Notre Dame in North Adams

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Towering Repairs

Notre Dame steeple towers over the trees as seen from the bottom of Willow Dell.

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Workers from Five Star Building Corp. of Easthampton have a commanding view of the city on Friday as they make repairs to the steeple on Notre Dame Church.

Repairs to portals on the steeple, including the prominent louvered sides, and replacement of the rear portions of two of the church's roofs are being done through a matching grant of up to $100,000 from the Massachusetts Historical Commission awarded in late 2008. Reinhart Associates of Agawam is the project engineer for the estimated $95,000 project.

The cross atop the steeple was removed two years ago along with other religious items.

The city purchased the Notre Dame complex nearly two years ago in an effort to preserve the buildings. The rectory was sold to Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and the school has been optioned by Arch Street Development of Needham, which is currently rehabilitating the Clark Biscuit mill for housing. The city received $25,000 from the Diocese of Springfield for roof repairs as part of the purchase agreement.

Work began nearly two weeks ago. On Friday, a crane towered above steeple, a distinctive part of the city's skyline from its eastern gateway, wth the bucket holding the workers dangling from it.

Tags: church,   renovation,   

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Drury Graduate to Direct Horror Film in North Adams

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A Drury High School graduate is hoping to bring his dream — or, more appropriately, his nightmare — to film life. 

The horror film "The Uncredited," written by Nick Burchard, will be filmed in North Adams this spring, pending fundraising and the COVID-19 pandemic. Burchard's Tiny Viking Productions is making the film in conjunction with Sancha Spiller and Kasey Rae of Skylah Productions of New York City.

"I grew up in the area, and I've always appreciated the historical places, in particular the Hoosac Tunnel, Mohawk Theater, and the old mills," Burchard said. "I think North Adams has a very unique setting, with the mountains surrounding the city and of course, all the steeples.

"The Uncredited" follows a young woman who appears in an independent film. While watching it, her friends notice something disturbing in the background of her scene. This leads to rumors and distrust in even the closest group of friends.
"My goal is to make great characters, and even though it's a spooky thriller the characters in it are just friends sitting down to watch a movie together," Burchard said. "They crack jokes, roast each other, and are all collectively trying to have a good time … but that juxtaposed with the realization that one of them might be hiding something is what creates the thriller edge to this. I think it's really fun."
Spiller added that the film does not rely on horror tropes such as jump scares. She said the screenplay is character-driven.
"It showcases our greatest fear of not knowing the people around us as well as we think," she said. "It makes us second guess who we trust and remember that just being in the wrong place at the wrong time can have horrifying consequences."
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