Mosquito Spraying Scheduled In Pittsfield

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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire County Mosquito Control Project will be spraying the areas around Brattlebrook Park and Marchesio Park on Monday night to reduce a high count of mosquitoes.
 
The truck-mounted spraying will target the streets immediately surrounding those two parks at 11 p.m. until midnight Monday, July 15. In the event of rain, the spraying may be rescheduled to Tuesday, July 16.
 
The goal of the spraying is to reduce the spread of mosquito-borne viruses such as West Nile Virus or Eastern Equine Encephalitis. While there hasn't been a finding of a disease, the Health Department said there has been high counts of C. Perturban mosquitoes, which are a common vector.
 
The number of mosquitoes has exceeded the threshold set by the Board of Health to spray in an effort to prevent migration into other neighborhoods and reducing the population before the virus is introduced to the area.
 
The Health Department provided the following tips to protect against mosquito-borne illnesses:
 
-When outdoors, wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt and socks.
-Use a repellent with DEET according to the instructions on the product label.
-Keep mosquitoes out of one's residence by repairing holes in screens and making sure screens fit tightly to doors and windows.
-Schedule outdoor events to avoid the hours between dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are most active.
-Remove areas of standing water around one's property twice a week to eliminate sources of mosquito breeding.
 
Residents may request to be excluded from pesticide application by submitting an Exclusion Request Form which can be obtained here.
 
Exclusions will take effect 14 days after the request is made.  The form is also available by contacting the Mosquito Control Project at 413-447-9808 or email chris@berkshiremosquito.org.
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PCTV Documentary Finds Pittsfield Parade Dates Back to 1801

PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Pittsfield Community Television's recently released documentary "Fighting For Independence:  The History of the Pittsfield Fourth of July Parade" has traced the first Pittsfield Fourth of July Parade back to at least 1801.  

An article in the Pittsfield Sun from July 7, 1801, says that "at 12:00 o’ clock at noon a Procession was formed consisting of the Militia of the town."

Previously the Pittsfield Parade Committee acknowledged that the parade dated back to 1824.

"This was a fascinating discovery, as we researched to put this documentary together," said Bob Heck, PCTV’s coordinator of advancement and community production and executive producer of the program.  "Not only were we able to trace the parade back further than ever before, but to see how the parade has impacted Pittsfield, and how the community always seems to come together to make sure the parade happens is remarkable."

The Pittsfield Fourth of July parade experienced bumps in the road even back in the early 1800s - most notably, when Captain Joseph Merrick, a Federalist, excluded Democrats from the yearly post-parade gathering at his tavern in 1808.

The parade ran concurrently from at least 1801 until 1820. In 1821, Pittsfield’s spiritual leader Dr. Rev. Heman Humphrey, canceled the festivities so the day could be dedicated to God before resuming in 1822 after residents decided they wanted their parade.

"Fighting for Independence: The History of the Pittsfield Fourth of July Parade" premiered July 4 at 9:30 am on PCTV Access Pittsfield Channel 1301 and PCTV Select.  The program is available on-demand on PCTV Select, available on Roku and Apple TV, or online.

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