Bits & Bytes: Kari Giordano wins Kapteyn Prize; GB cultural council deadline; Project eLEVate show; Stockbridge cemetery walk

Giordano’s accomplishments include creating a “Foundations of Design” curriculum described by colleagues as one of “the finest examples of a teacher-developed, student-centered project” they have ever seen.

Educator, artist Kari Giordano wins $10,000 Kapteyn Prize

Kari GiordanoSheffield — Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation announced yesterday that Kari Giordano of Lee has been awarded the seventh annual James C. Kapteyn Prize for her exceptional work as a teacher, coach, and mentor at Mount Everett Regional High School. The prize was established to recognize high school teachers of exemplary character and integrity who lead by example and have made a career commitment to teaching.

A teacher of art, design and photography at Mount Everett for nine years, Giordano’s accomplishments include creating a “Foundations of Design” curriculum described by colleagues as one of “the finest examples of a teacher-developed, student-centered project” they have ever seen; establishing an ongoing collaboration with the Sheffield Senior Center; and leading a 10th-grade class in the publication of a children’s book. Outside the classroom Giordano serves as varsity cheerleading coach and advisor of the yearbook and prom committees, plays in the orchestra alongside her students, and has participated in physical education fitness challenges. She heads Mount Everett’s arts and literature magazine, plans a visiting artist lecture series, and organizes fundraisers to assist students with financial need so that they can attend school events and programs.

Giordano earned her bachelor of fine arts degree in graphic design from the State University of New York at New Paltz, and her master’s degree in art and design education from the Rhode Island School of Design. She has continued her work outside of teaching as a freelance graphic designer and photographer, and has twice been published in the national education magazine “School Arts.”

The Mount Everett community will celebrate Kari Giordano’s achievements on September 20 at 1:30 p.m. with a presentation at the school that is open to the public.

Teachers may be nominated for the Kapteyn Prize by their heads of school. The next deadline for nominations is February 2, 2016.


*     *     *

Great Barrington Cultural Council accepting 2016 grant applications

Great Barrington — The Great Barrington Cultural Council is now accepting grant applications for 2016. Grants are awarded to organizations and individuals for the presentation of quality programs in the humanities, sciences and the arts that benefit the citizens of Great Barrington and Housatonic. Application forms and more information are available online.

The application deadline is October 15, 2015. All applications must be mailed to the Great Barrington Cultural Council, c/o Selectboard Office, Town of Great Barrington, 334 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA 01230.


*     *     *

Reception for Project eLEVate “Who Am I?” show

Project eLEVate art
Artwork by Project elevate scholars.

Pittsfield — Over the summer the Lift Ev’ry Voice Festival’s Project eLEVate program engaged area youth in an array of transformative and thought-provoking experiences which are the subject of the art exhibition “Who Am I?” opening Friday, September 4 at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts.

The exhibition will run through September 26 and will showcase the various creative works of the Project eLEVate scholars. Throughout the program, the scholars attended workshops, lectures, films, tours, and other enriching activities that provided them the opportunity to learn more about themselves as well as the Berkshires’ rich African-American history, culture, and heritage.

The opening reception runs from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m., is free and open to the public, and is part of Pittsfield’s First Fridays Artswalk.


*     *     *

Stockbridge cemetery walk

Stockbridge — On Saturday, September 5 at 4 p.m., volunteers from the Stockbridge Library, Museum & Archives will present “Amazing But True: Strange and Surprising Stockbridge Stories,” the fourth cemetery walk of the 2015 season.

Unusual businesses, unplanned roles in international events, political explosions: Stockbridge townspeople have been part of many interesting, quirky, and just plain odd – events. Hear a selection of their stories, which run from local to international and from personal to political.

The tour will gather at the cemetery gate on Main Street. Parking is available at the old Town Hall across from the gate. A $5 donation is requested.

For more information, contact the Stockbridge Library at (413) 298-5501 or