Monday, July 15, 2024

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Bits & Bytes: Pleasant Valley celebration; Karen Allen at Dorset Theatre Festival; Andrea Harrington at Becket Arts Center; ‘Make Space for All You Need’; Trinity Church ice cream social

Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington will appear Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the Becket Arts Center for a frank discussion about issues of criminal justice reform.

Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary to celebrate 90 years

Lenox — Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary will celebrate 90 years of conservation and education Saturday, Aug. 3, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The day’s programs will include a morning bird walk, a gardening presentation, and talks about fungi and native animals. From 5:30 to 7 p.m., there will be an anniversary party open to all who want to celebrate the past, present and future of Pleasant Valley with s’mores, camp songs and a few new surprises.

In 1929, the Lenox Garden Club purchased the Powers and Crockett farms, creating a 300-acre bird and wildlife sanctuary. Trails were cut, most still in use today, and bird boxes were placed. The next year 4,000 people visited the property, an amazingly large number for the time. In 2018, Pleasant Valley welcomed more than 20,000 visitors. Today, Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries manages five other sanctuaries throughout Berkshire County, bringing the total land protected for people and wildlife to 3,400 acres.

Admission to the sanctuary as well as all programs will be free during the celebration. Some programs require pre-registration. For more information or to register, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries at (413) 637-0320.


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Dorset Theatre Festival to present ‘A Stage of Twilight’

Karen Allen. Photo courtesy Dorset Theatre Festival

Dorset, Vt. — On Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 7:30 p.m., Dorset Theatre Festival will present a staged reading of “A Stage of Twilight” by Sarah T. Schwab as part of its Pipeline New Play Series. The reading will star Karen Allen and be directed by DTF artistic director Dina Janis.

After 42 years of marriage, Cora’s husband, who has been diagnosed with terminal heart disease, announces he intends to spend his final days on his own. Suddenly confronted with the loss of her own life as she knows it, Cora faces a grave choice as she considers what happens when “plenty of good years ahead of you” might mean “plenty of good years alone.”

The cast includes Allen, whose long-spanning career includes her iconic role as Marion Ravenwood in “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” as Cora. Kale Browne, who appeared on television’s “Another World” and as Sam Rappaport on “One Life to Live,” will play Barry. Oliver Palmer (DTF’s “American Buffalo”) will play Joey. The play was most recently read at Berkshire Theatre Group in August 2018, where it also starred Allen.

Tickets are $30. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Dorset Theatre Festival box office at (802) 867-2223 x101 or


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Andrea Harrington to discuss criminal justice

Berkshire County District Attorney Andrea Harrington

Becket — Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington will appear Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the Becket Arts Center for a frank discussion about issues of criminal justice reform. Ted Greenwood, co-president of the Becket Arts Center, will moderate.

Since being sworn in as DA in January, 2019, Harrington has implemented a new cash bail policy, established a Berkshire County Domestic and Sexual Violence Task Force, and changed the way District Court cases are assigned to prosecutors to ensure greater continuity for victims in criminal cases.

Moderator Greenwood participated, through the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization, in advocating for particular criminal justice reforms that were enacted in Massachusetts last year. He said “National and state criminal justice issues like mandatory minimum sentencing, fines and fees, use of bail bonds, domestic abuse and making the trial system more efficient affect so many Berkshire County citizens. It is really gratifying that DA Harrington is coming out to Becket to discuss such matters directly with our audience.”

The event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Becket Arts Center at (413) 623-6635 or


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Deb Koffman’s Art Space to host ‘Make Space for All You Need’

Illustration by Deb Koffman

Housatonic — Artist and author Deb Koffman’s new show, “Make Space for all You Need,” will open Friday, Aug. 2, from 3 to 6 p.m. at Deb Koffman’s Art Space.

The interactive and meditative show invites viewers to consider the possibility of making space on paper and in their lives for all they feel and all they need to express. The show is a reminder that everyone’s fears, doubts, outrage and dreams all need space to be seen, felt and known.

The show is open by appointment or by chance. For more information, contact (413) 274-1212 or


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Ice cream social to benefit Thelma’s Little Fund

Lenox — On Monday, Aug. 5, from 6 to 8 p.m., Trinity Episcopal Church will host its annual ice cream social to benefit Thelma’s Little Fund. Named for longtime Trinity organist and choir director Thelma Dengler, the fund provides small, urgent, one-time grants to distressed Lenox residents and has distributed nearly $50,000 to Lenox families in its 28-year history. There is no admission fee for the ice cream social but free-will donations for the Fund will be accepted. For more information, contact (413) 441-4258 or



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