Sunday, July 14, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

Bits & Bytes: Woofstock 2019; Community at Bat; black history heritage hike; First Fridays Artswalk; adult education classes

The Community Development Corporation of South Berkshire will hold its third annual Community at Bat charity softball game Sunday, September 8, at Memorial Field Park on Bridge Street.

Woofstock dog walk to support Berkshire Humane Society

Pittsfield — Berkshire Humane Society will hold Woofstock, its annual fundraising dog walk and 5K race, Sunday, Sept. 8, at the First Street Common. Day-of registration will begin at 9 a.m. with the race kicking off at 10 a.m. and the dog walk following at 11 a.m. Dogs are invited to join for both the 5K race and the dog walk.

Runners will be timed by Berkshire Running Center, and walkers will stroll along North Street to help raise awareness for the shelter’s mission. Leashed canine companions are welcome during both events. Afterward, participants and supporters are invited to enjoy family-friendly activities, canine games, food trucks, music and raffles. All participants are encouraged to collect pledges to benefit homeless animals, and registration includes a free online crowdfunding tool.

BHS has also announced an offer from an anonymous donor: If 250 people register for a minimum donation of $25, the shelter will receive a $10,000 gift to help homeless pets with food, treats, medical care and other daily necessities while they wait for adoption.

For more information or to register, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Berkshire Humane Society at (413) 477-7878 x131.


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Participants in the 2018 Community at Bat softball game. Photo courtesy Community Development Corporation of South Berkshire

CDCSB to present Community at Bat charity softball game

Great Barrington — The Community Development Corporation of South Berkshire will hold its third annual Community at Bat charity softball game Sunday, September 8, at 1 p.m. at Memorial Field Park on Bridge Street. The game will begin at 1 pm.

The event will include a friendly game of softball, free ice cream from SoCo Creamery for the first 25 spectators, and free e-bike demos from Berkshire Bike & Board. The game will be broadcast live on WSBS. CDCSB is holding an online raffle in support of its work featuring gifts and gift cards from local stores through Thursday, Sept. 5. The raffle will also be available at the game. Winners will be selected during the game but do not need to be present to collect the prize.

All are welcome to watch the game. For more information or to register to play in the game, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Community Development Corporation of South Berkshire at (413) 528-7788 or


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Historian Bernard Drew to lead African-American heritage walk

The Clinton A.M.E. Zion Church in downtown Great Barrington. Photo: Rachel Fletcher

Great Barrington — The Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area will present a Housatonic Heritage walking tour Sunday, Sept. 8, from 1 to 3 p.m. with local historian and Edge contributor Bernard Drew. Beginning at the former Clinton A.M.E. Zion Church, the walk will center around the history of African-American entrepreneurs Jason and Elmira Cooley.

The Cooleys were in domestic service to the Bigelow family in the 1870s. They were popular cooks at the annual Housatonic Agricultural Society fair in the 1880s. They owned a succession of cafes on Main Street in the 1890s, and had the first Black bed and breakfast in South Berkshire. They built their own home on East Street in the Brooklyn section of town. Drew has a chapter on the Cooleys in his recent book “East Rock is Falling.” He promises a few historical surprises during his presentation.

The walk is free and open to the public. Registration is not required. The walk will take two hours and cover approximately 1.5 miles on sidewalks. For more information, contact Housatonic Heritage at (860) 435-9505 or


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First Fridays Artswalk to feature photography exhibits

Photo: Ginger Armstrong

Pittsfield — The Sept. 6 First Fridays Artswalk will encompass 18 art shows featuring over a dozen regional artists in Pittsfield’s Upstreet Cultural District from 5 to 8 p.m. The Artswalk will kick off with opening receptions and artists present throughout, plus a free guided walking tour beginning at 5 p.m. at the BRTA Intermodal Center.

During the month of September there will be multiple photography exhibits throughout downtown Pittsfield. RJ Stohr Diamonds & Fine Jewelry will feature the photography of TJ Studios of the Berkshires and northern Arizona. The Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts’ Pittsfield branch, 66 Allen St., will feature photography by Justin Biasin. TKG Real Estate will feature sketches and watercolors by Jean Rousseau and photographs by Doane Perry. Steven Valenti’s Clothing will display a digital photography show by Ginger Armstrong titled “Experiments with Time and Place.”

New shows from local artists will also be displayed at NUarts Gallery & Studios, Berkshire Museum, the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Lee Bank, Hotel on North, the Marketplace Café, Downtown Pittsfield Inc., Berkshire Paint and Sip, the Beacon Cinema and Berkshire Medical Center. For more information, contact Downtown Pittsfield Inc. at (413) 443-6501.


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Adult learning center to hold registration for classes

Pittsfield — All new and returning students who wish to prepare for the GED or HiSET exams, earn an Adult Diploma, or are interested in learning or improving English as a Second Language at the William Stickney Pittsfield Adult Learning Center, 441 North St., must register, in person, on one of four days: Thursday, Sept. 5, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. or 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.; Friday, Sept. 6, from 9 a.m. to noon; Monday, Sept. 9, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; or Tuesday, Sept. 10, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. After those dates, registration will only be done by appointment.

The William Stickney Pittsfield Adult Learning Center has been offering free adult basic education and ESL classes to individuals ages 16 and older since 1976. The center also provides individualized attention, education and career advising, workplace readiness skills, and flexible hours through distance learning. For more information, call (413) 499-9530.



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