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The owners of Marie’s North Street Eatery and Gallery hold a ribbon cutting recently.
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Marie's North Street Eatery and Gallery is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Marie's North Street Eatery Cuts Ribbon in Pittsfield

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires.com
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Well-wishers toast the opening of Marie's North Street Eatery and Gallery.
The owners of Marie’s North Street Eatery and Gallery hold a ribbon cutting recently.

PITTSFIELD, Mass.- Marie’s North Street Eatery and Gallery brings grab-and-go offerings to North Street in a revamped storefront.  White it has been open since December, a ribbon cutting was held last week as a formal debut. 

Owner Neil Davis wanted a place to “put my foot down in the community” while making social connections. Partner Ashley Marie handles the kitchen and menu curating, focusing on breakfast and lunch favorites.

“We want to have grab-and-go availability for the downtown worker crowd but also we have a made to order lunch menu,” she said.

This includes sandwiches, soups, a salad bar, a rotating hot or cold dip, and future made to order breakfast items. The turkey avocado on farmer's bread has been a customer favorite.

Former tenant Maria Sekowski won’t be found singing karaoke regularly, but the legacy of Maria’s European Delights is honored with her well-known kielbasa on the menu. There is also a “Maria’s Pantry” section with favorites like her packaged pierogis.

The new name pays homage to its predecessor.

“The last week before she closed the business, I sat here with her every day all day and learned her customers,” Marie said.

“I do have a lot of returning customers that came back so I learned what people come in here and look for and mainly we found that it was the kielbasa and the frozen pierogis so they could take home and cook later.”

She added that her and Sekowski spent “a lot of time” talking about recipes for soup and kapusta, a Polished cabbage dish, and she will always be there to lend a helping hand while enjoying her retirement.

Maria’s European Delights closed at the end of 2022 after 15 years in business. Sekowski's late husband Krzysztof "Kris" opened the store in Great Barrington in 2007, and, in 2013, it was moved to Pittsfield.  The Eastern European deli was known for the smell of homemade soup, stuffed cabbage, kielbasa, and impromptu musical numbers.

Davis, a Veteran entrepreneur, has kept an office in the historic Shipton building for about 10 years and Marie was a formal administrative assistant before they went into business together. He also owns a shredding business in California and has other startup ventures.



When Maria’s closed, he saw an opportunity in the space and a way to connect with the community and purchased the business in February of 2023.

“Personally, I'm actually seeing people meeting people, whereas before I'm holed up in an office,” he said.

The front of the eatery is lined with photographs framed by reclaimed wood from a former chair factor at The Ruins at Sassafras in New Lebanon, N.Y. This wood also was used to make tabletops.

Davis calls the gallery an “anti-gallery,” largely focusing on amateur artists and using lightweight, magnet-mounted frames that are easily movable. The first show focused on Berkshire County landscapes.

A $31,000 grant from MassDevelopment's Transformative Development Initiative helped with construction of the storefront, which included work on the ceiling, window, and flooring. Marie’s was one of four Pittsfield businesses to secure the funding to aid corridor revitalization in Gateway Cities.

Local officials, city employees, and other community members gathered or a ribbon cutting and reception. Non alcoholic bubbly was passed around in champagne glasses to toast to a new era, Sekowski toasting as well.

Marie said that the eatery is finding its rhythm and would like to expand its call ahead curbside pickup and delivery to businesses during lunch hour in the future.

Marie’s North Street Eatery and Gallery is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

 


Tags: ,    new business,   Downtown Pittsfield,   ribbon cutting,   

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Dalton Board of Health Approves Green Burial Verbiage

By Sabrina DammsiBerkshires Staff
DALTON, Mass. — The Board of Health approved wording for the green burial guidelines during its meeting on Wednesday. 
 
The guideline stipulates that "Ebola or any other diseases that the CDC or Massachusetts Department of Public Health deem unsuitable for green burials can not be approved by the town Board of Health." 
 
The board has been navigating how to include communicable diseases in its guidelines to prevent them from spreading.  
 
Town Health Agent Agnes Witkowski has been working to clarify the state's guidelines regarding infectious diseases and green burials. 
 
She attended a presentation on green burials and consulted with people from various organizations, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, where it was determined that the state is behind in developing guidelines for green burials.
 
Currently, the only disease that would prevent someone from being able to have a green burial is ebola, board member Amanda Staples-Opperman said. Bugs would take care of anything else. 
 
The town running into situations surrounding an unknown disease would be a very rare occurrence, board members said. 
 
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