Tuesday, May 21, 2024

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Bits & Bytes: First Fridays Artswalk; Friday night shopping; storytelling talk; 2016 VIM coupon book; Williams fiction reading

Volunteers in Medicine Berkshires (VIM) announces that the launch of the 2016 VIM Coupon Book will take place at the Lenox Holiday Stroll, Saturday, December 5, from noon to 4 at MacKimmie Company and Casablanca.

December First Fridays Artswalk

Pittsfield — The December 4 First Fridays Artswalk will encompass 15 different art shows featuring work by more than 25 regional artists in Pittsfield’s Upstreet Cultural District and will kick off with opening receptions from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. There will be a guided walking tour beginning at 5 p.m. at the Intermodal Center at BRTA. The evening will culminate with a free Afterwalk Party featuring live music by Ryder Cooley and the Dust Bowl Faeries from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Whitney Center for the Arts.

The Lichtenstein Center for the Arts will present a holiday wreath auction of 50 wreaths created by regional artists with singing auctioneers Andy Kelly and Roy Burdick. A preview with food and drink by Mission Bar + Tapas, Balderdash Cellars, and Big Elm Brewing will take place from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The live auction will begin at 6:30 pm and all proceeds will benefit Pittsfield Food Pantries. There will be a $10 admission fee at the door. The Whitney Center for the Arts will present the third annual Whimsy Art Show featuring the works of Purely Patricia, Michael Vincent Bushy, Ryder Cooley, Karl Mullen, Lisa Griffith, Linda Graves, Gary Lippincott, and Tammara Leminen. NUarts Gallery and Studios will host open artists’ studios and will also feature the artwork of Taconic High School students. In support of the Berkshire Community Action Council’s Holiday ELF Warm Clothing Program, State Representative Tricia Farley-Bouvier will host a holiday open house at 33 Dunham Mall during the Artswalk.

New shows from local artists will also be displayed at the following locations as part of the Artswalk: Unusual Wedding Rings & More, Berkshire Paint and Sip, Shire City Sanctuary, The Marketplace Café, Steven Valenti’s Clothing for Men, and Bagels Too. There will be live music featuring John Culpo and Company in the Crawford Square, 137 North Street.

First Fridays Artswalk is presented by Downtown Pittsfield, Inc. For more information on First Fridays Artswalk and to view a listing and map of all participating artists and locations, call (413) 443-6501.

–E.E.

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Downtown Stockbridge shops open late

Stockbridge — In an effort to make holiday shopping more convenient for Berkshire residents, 11 downtown Stockbridge shops have joined together to offer late-night Friday shopping through December 18. The shops that will stay open until 8 p.m. are An American CraftsmanElm Street Market; Heirlooms JewelryMutability in Motion; Nejaime’s Wine CellarPeace, Love and Chocolate; Red Lion Inn Gift Shop; Seven Arts Gift Shop; Sidetracks; Vlada Boutique; and Williams & Sons Country Store.

For more information contact the Stockbridge Chamber of Commerce at (413) 298-5200.

–E.E.

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Novelist to discuss storytelling

M A Kirkwood
M. A. Kirkwood.

Chatham, N.Y. — Novelist and anthroposophist M.A. Kirkwood will speak about “storytelling in our times” on Sunday, December 6 at 7 p.m. in the Culture Hall at Camphill Ghent. There is a suggested donation of $10.

Kirkwood’s latest novel for young adults, “Claire Ange,” involves a “befuddled spirit-entity that opens portals into spirit-destiny through one’s early deeds, all set in a humorous contemporary narrative.” The author will discuss the importance of bringing “consciousness soul” into storytelling and will give examples from Western literature. She will also touch on humor’s role in serving as a conduit to spiritual truths. Her first novel, published in 2003, is called, “Simon Lazarus.” Copies of both of Kirkwood’s books will be for sale at the talk.

–E.E.

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VIM to debut 2016 coupon book

Lenox — Volunteers in Medicine Berkshires (VIM) is pleased to announce that the launch of the 2016 VIM Coupon Book will take place at the Lenox Holiday Stroll. A kick-off party for the coupon book will take place on Saturday, December 5 from noon – 4 p.m. at MacKimmie Co. The public is invited to enjoy holiday treats, enter MacKimmie’s “Snuggle-Up” raffle, and make some family memories in the “Fabulously Fun Photo Booth.”

The VIM Coupon Book regularly sells for $25 and helps to support the work of the clinic. The VIM 2016 Coupon Book will be available at the special pre-sale price of $20 at MacKimmie Co. and Casablanca through Thursday, December 31. Many other Lenox shops participating in the Stroll will have the 2015 VIM Coupon Book on sale along with other special holiday offers. The 2015 book is being offered at an end-of-year sale price of $10 and can be used now through the end of December.

–E.E.

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Williams professor to present fiction reading

jshepard
Jim Shepard.

Williamstown — Williams College J. Leland Miller Professor of American History, Literature, and Eloquence Jim Shepard will give a fiction reading on Monday, December 7 at 7 p.m. in Griffin Hall, room 3. The event is free and open to the public.

Shepard is the author of six novels and four story collections. His most recent novel, “The Book of Aron,” tells the story of a young boy in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Holocaust, was a finalist for the Kirkus Award, and is a finalist for the Carnegie Medal in Fiction.  His short fiction has appeared in Harper’s, McSweeney’s, the Paris Review, the Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, and the New Yorker. In 2005 Shepard was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship for creative writing. He holds a B.A. from Trinity College and an M.F.A. from Brown University.

–E.E.

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