Mack said he hopes to open up the dispensary in December or January.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshire Hydroponics is fully integrated and the gardening supplier has not only expanded into marijuana cultivation but now is working to open up a dispensary.
"We have been very fortunate to be able to keep on growing," owner Tim Mack said. "Everything is coming to fruition."
Mack started with Berkshire Hydroponics, an indoor/outdoor gardening supplier focusing on GMO-free, organic gardening, about seven years ago.
The well-stocked store has shelves of soils, nutrients, teas, and whatever else a beginner or experienced gardener may need.
Mack said over the years, they have served a loyal customer base well but found over time there was more that they could do. So they spread beyond the four walls of suite 1 to suite 3 and 4 in their 1450 East St. location.
The next steps turned Mack's business into a vertically unified business. With the help of his business partner Sonia Orenstein, just a few hundred feet down East they opened Mass Yield Cultivation - a 5,000 square foot marijuana cultivation center.
Now to complete the journey from seed to the store counter, they plan to open up Potency, a marijuana dispensary in suites 1 and 2
"Everything really fell into place, and the spaces became available. I never envisioned it going that way," he said. "Now we supply everything starting with seeds. I am the only one in the state that is fully integrated from seed to end product...I am working on building a respectable small business for my kids' future."
Mack has two boys, Lukas age 10, and Greyson, age 6.
Mack said he hopes to open up the dispensary in December or January. He pointed to the new sign atop the storefront excited to eventually see the storefront busy with customers.
Mack kept coming back to his loyal customers who make Berkshire Hydroponics more than a store, but a family.
"I like to keep everything local and everyone has been so supportive," Mack said. "The environment here is very friendly. People come in and they start talking. They exchange numbers and tips. I like my business to run like a family, and that is what I want at Potency."
He said Potency will sell products from other vendors as well as their own products.
"It is definitely, from what I see, a different style build-out," Mack said. "We want to have our own in-house brand...we want to put out a quality product."
Mack said he hopes to have a vendor day to help promote other small businesses once Potency opens.
At his core, Mack is a gardener and is most passionate about Mass Yield.
"The growing is where our passion really is," he said. "Gardening is a passion. It is more about that than the money. We want to help people. We want to do our part."
He said he plans to expand into outdoor and greenhouse cultivation.
He said he makes a point to hire local contractors and local people to handle each phase of the business. He attributes his tight-knit team and customer base to the business's success.
"I appreciate everyone that has been here and has shopped here from the beginning and those who continue to come here," he said. "Because of them, we have grown beyond our one small suite, and we are excited to continue to serve our community as we expand."
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PITTSFIELD, Mass — Berkshire Community College (BCC) recently released its enrollment data for fall 2021 — a season still impacted by COVID-19, but with a growing number of first-year and continuing students.
Key findings include:
Overall enrollment is up 1.4 percent over 2020
The first-year student population is up 16.4 percent
Continuing students are up 3.9 percent
Full-time equivalent (FTE) students are down 1.2 percent
Readmitted students (those who leave college for less than a year and reapply) are down 27.27 percent
The number of non-degree-seeking students has also grown, largely due to BCC's Early College program, which offers up to 15 free college credits to high school juniors and seniors. BCC has increased the number eligible students for the program.
"I'm thrilled that our new student and continuing student numbers are up. The BCC team has worked so hard to create an environment during the pandemic in which students could continue to thrive," said Adam Klepetar, BCC Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management. "We continue to operate successfully in a very challenging enrollment environment, with decreases in the number of high school graduates and increases in competition."
William Cameron, Mark Brazeau, Vicky Smith, Alison McGee, Sara Hathaway, Daniel Elias, and William Tyer covered a number of topics ranging from staff wages and building improvements to Taconic High School's mascot change and the recent superintendent selection process.
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The six-term representative said the people of the Berkshire district deserve a dedicated advocate in the Senate. He cited the devastation that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on its communities and small businesses and how it widened the divide between the wealthy and those struggling to put food on... click for more
The forum was held at the Berkshire Athenaum as a partnership between iBerkshires.com and Pittsfield Community Television. It was moderated by iBerkshires Executive Editor Tammy Daniels and Pittsfield Bureau Chief Brittany Polito.
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William Garrity of Taconic High School and Elodie Theriault of Pittsfield High School received the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents Certificate of Academic Excellence.
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