Monday, July 22, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

Bits & Bytes: Car Seat Headrest at MASS MoCA; Egg Cream Eggstravaganza; John Bonifaz at Berkshire Athenaeum; pajama drive; Valentine’s swing dance

At Hevreh of Southern Berkshire the evening will begin with a screening of the short film “Egg Cream” by Nora Claire Miller, Peter Miller and Amy Linton, a bittersweet look at memory, history, and the enduring meaning of the beloved chocolate soda drink born on the Jewish Lower East Side of New York City.

MASS MoCA to welcome Car Seat Headrest

North Adams — MASS MoCA will welcome Car Seat Headrest with special guests Naked Giants Friday, Feb. 15, at 8 p.m.

Born from indie pop and outsider origins, Car Seat Headrest has evolved from the homespun solo-project of Will Toledo to a four-piece outfit that generates intricate masterworks of pop music and draws comparisons to everyone from the Beach Boys to Pavement. The live band has been on the road for the past month playing grandiose, sold-out shows in support of the recently released “Twin Fantasy,” a re-recorded and re-imagined return to the group’s 2011 Bandcamp classic.

Tickets are $25–$50. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact MASS MoCA at (413) 662-2111 or


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Goldfeder’s on the Lower East Side of New York City was a source of egg creams. Photo courtesy Willow Pond Films

Egg Cream Eggstravaganza to celebrate history of classic fountain drink

Great Barrington — Hevreh of Southern Berkshire’s Jewish Festival of Books and Knesset Israel’s Berkshire Jewish Film Festival will collaborate on an Egg Cream Eggstravaganza Saturday, Feb. 16, at 7 p.m. at Hevreh.

The evening will begin with a screening of the short film “Egg Cream” by Nora Claire Miller, Peter Miller and Amy Linton, a bittersweet look at memory, history, and the enduring meaning of the beloved chocolate soda drink born on the Jewish Lower East Side of New York City. Following the film, author Barry Joseph will give the audience a taste via video of his book “Seltzertopia: The Extraordinary Story of an Ordinary Drink,” which he will present in person at this year’s book festival in July 18. After Joseph’s video appearance, audience members will be invited to share their own reminiscences and enjoy real egg creams made from siphon-bottle seltzer, milk and Fox’s U-bet syrup.

There is a $5 suggested donation for the event, and RSVPs are strongly recommended to ensure enough egg creams for all. For more information or to RSVP, call Hevreh at (413) 528-6378.


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Berkshire Democratic Brigades to present author John Bonifaz

John Bonifaz. Photo courtesy Free Speech For People

Pittsfield — The Berkshire Democratic Brigades will present attorney and author John Bonifaz Wednesday, Feb. 13, at 6:30 p.m. at the Berkshire Athenaeum for a talk titled “Defending our Constitution and our Democracy: The Case for the Impeachment of Donald Trump.” A question-and-answer session and book signing of “The Constitution Demands It: The Case for the Impeachment of Donald Trump,” which Bonifaz co-authored with Ron Fein and Ben Clements, will follow the talk.

Bonifaz is a constitutional law attorney who has been at the forefront of voting rights battles across the country for more than two decades. Prior to co-founding Free Speech For People, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to defending democracy and upholding the U.S. Constitution, Bonifaz served as the executive director and general counsel of the National Voting Rights Institute, and as the legal director of Voter Action, a national election integrity organization. Bonifaz is a 1992 cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School and winner of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship Award.

The talk is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Berkshire Democratic Brigades at


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Libraries partner with Boston Bruins for PJ Drive

Great Barrington — The staff, Friends and trustees of the Great Barrington Libraries are teaming up with 128 libraries across the state, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners and the Boston Bruins to participate in the Bruins’ annual PJ Drive to benefit the Department of Children and Families. The goal of the drive is to collect 12,000 pairs of new pajamas for children and teens in need.

Through Sunday, March 24, the Mason and Ramsdell libraries will be collecting new pairs of pajamas for babies, children and teens, and those wishing to donate may drop off new pajamas in the collection boxes at the libraries. Pajamas donated will be provided to Berkshire County families.

Other area libraries with collection boxes for the PJ Drive include the Berkshire Athenaeum in Pittsfield, the Lenox Library, and the Otis Library and Museum. For more information, contact Mason Library at (413) 528-2403.


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The Lucky 5. Photo: David Edgecomb

Dewey Hall to host Valentine’s swing dance with the Lucky 5

Sheffield — Oldtone Native will present a Valentine’s Day swing dance Thursday, Feb. 14, at Dewey Hall, beginning with a lesson with Jason Fenton at 8 p.m. Dancing to live music with the Lucky 5 will begin at 9 p.m.

The Lucky 5 is a hard-swinging jazz band that blends swing and gypsy jazz to create a unique, foot-stomping blend of music that appeals to a wide range of music lovers. The Lucky 5 performs original compositions and puts a new spin on old jazz standards. Band members are Kip Beacco on guitar, Will Carroll on drums, Matt Downing on bass, Carolyn Dufraine on trombone, and Jonathan Talbott on fiddle.

The cost is a sliding of $10–$20. The evening will include chocolate giveaways from Chocolate Springs. Attendees are invited to wear red, white and black in honor of Valentine’s Day. Beginners are welcome and partners are not necessary. For more information, contact (413) 429-1176 or



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