Bits & Bytes: Schumacher lectures; 10×10 submissions; virtual reality at Williams; spirit medium at Ventfort Hall; new Director of Development at Hillcrest

Both Savory and Smith have developed agricultural models based on natural systems which offer methods for farming with the potential to fix carbon, clean waters, and produce food more abundantly.

Thirty-fifth annual E.F. Schumacher lectures

Hudson, N.Y. — On Saturday, October 24, the Schumacher Center for a New Economics will present the 35th annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures, entitled “Cattle & Kelp: Agriculture in a New Economy.” The lectures will be delivered by agricultural innovators Allan Savory and Bren Smith.

Both Savory and Smith have developed agricultural models based on natural systems which offer methods for farming with the potential to fix carbon, clean waters, and produce food more abundantly. Savory has developed a “holistic management” model to reverse desertification throughout the world’s vital grasslands, while Smith cultivates kelp and shellfish using a model that he refers to as “3-D ocean farming.”

The 35th annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures will be held in the round barn of the Churchtown Dairy at 357 County Rd. 12. The lecture program will begin at 10 a.m. and conclude by 3 p.m.. Tours of the buildings, conducted by architect Rick Anderson, will begin at 9 a.m.

Tickets include lunch and cost $100 each. Pre-registration is required. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or call (413) 528-1737.


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Fifth annual 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival calls for submissions

Pittsfield — Spearheaded by Barrington Stage Company and the City of Pittsfield, the 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival is seeking submissions for the fifth annual festival, to be held throughout the city’s Upstreet Cultural District from Thursday, February 11 – Sunday, February 21, 2016.

The 2016 10×10 Upstreet Arts Festival will feature signature programming such as the 10×10 New Play Festival at Barrington Stage Company; the Ten Spot Art Show at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts; a Best of BIFF Shorts at the Beacon Cinema; several varied performances of music, theatre, opera, and more at the Whitney Center for the Arts; Ten Days of Play at Berkshire Museum, and a return of the Dance Ten performance. Fireworks will fill the winter night sky over the First Street Common for the second year in a row.

The committee is looking for new and out-of-the-box programming and partners. This 10×10 Upstreet call for submissions is to encourage artists, performers, and cultural organizations to propose programming for inclusion in the festival. All programming must occur within the Upstreet Cultural District during the festival dates and must relate to the festival’s theme of “ten.” Proposals may be submitted by email to or mailed or dropped off at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts. Interested participants should send a one-page description of their proposed performance, program, exhibition, or event and include whether it will be free or ticketed, the location, and whether it is proposed or confirmed; bios of key performers, artists, or personnel; images or links to video if appropriate; and a list of similar projects they have been involved in. The deadline for submission is October 30, 2015.


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Virtual reality lecture by Turner Whitted at Williams College

Turner Whitted
Computer engineer Turner Whitted.

Williamstown — Turner Whitted, a computer engineer with a career of seminal contributions to computer graphics, will speak on the past and future of virtual reality at 8 p.m. on Thursday, October 22 as part of the Williams College Computer Science Department’s Class of 1960 Scholars Lecture Series. Turner Whitted, noted researcher from NVIDIA Research, will speak in room 203 of the Thompson Physical Laboratory building. Whitted’s talk is titled “From Promise to Practical: A Half-Century of Virtual Realities” and will focus on his current work with NVIDIA Research focusing on displays for graphics applications including virtual and augmented realities.

Whitted is a prominent researcher who invented the recursive ray tracing algorithm, leading to the creation of modern computer generated films and special effects. He has made major contributions to video game engines, human computer interaction, and display technologies at Microsoft and NVIDIA.

With experience ranging from graphics hardware to HCI and pervasive computing, Whitted earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Duke University and his Ph.D. from North Carolina State University (NCSU), all in electrical engineering. He is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Computer Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at NCSU. He is an Association for Computing Machinery Fellow and a member of the National Academy of Engineering.


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Spirit medium Karen Tatro to discuss energies at Ventfort Hall

Karen Tatro
Spirit medium Karen Tatro.

Lenox — Karen Tatro, a certified spirit medium, will visit Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum on Friday, October 23 at 7 p.m. to share her findings about some of the spirits that haunt the mansion.

Tatro lives in New Hampshire with her husband and children. From the time she was a small child, she has had a deep connection with the spirit world. Tatro’s credentials and abilities in the paranormal field have led her to appear on two national TV shows dealing with paranormal content: Syfy Channel‘s “Ghost Hunters TAPS,” and the Biography Channel’s “My Ghost Story.” WMUR Channel 9 news interviewed and filmed Karen while she and her partner investigated the Ellacoya Country Store in Gilford, N.H., in 2014. Tatro is also a published author of a children’s book entitled “I’m A Super Hero ~ I’m not Afraid of Ghosts!”

Tickets for program are $35 and reservations are recommended as seating is limited. For information or reservations call Ventfort Hall at (413) 637-3206 or email


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Hillcrest Educational Centers hires new Director of Development

Tim Gallagher
Tim Gallagher, new Director of Development at Hillcrest Educational Center.

Pittsfield — Hillcrest Educational Centers, Inc. (HEC) has selected Tim Gallagher as its new Director of Development and Community Relations.

Gallagher first joined HEC as an intern in 1988 and had several key roles within the organization ranging from clinical work to staff development and training. After several years of private consulting and other executive management roles locally, Gallagher was chosen as HEC’s Director of Business Development from 2007-2013.

Most recently Gallagher was the CEO of Ramblewild. Gerard Burke, president and CEO of HEC, stated, ”Tim’s history with Hillcrest shows that he is more than capable of stepping into this new role, and we are excited to welcome Tim to the team once again. We look forward to his contributions to Hillcrest and the Berkshire community.”