Big Dance Theater in '17c,' which will be staged Saturday, Oct. 28, at MASS MoCA in North Adams. Photo: Ian Douglas

Bits & Bytes: Big Dance Theater; renewable energy fair; flu clinic; Michelle Gillett tribute; arborists at BBG

Judith Enck, former Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator under President Barack Obama, will be the keynote speaker at the 2017 Renewable Energy and Sustainable Living Fair.

Jacob’s Pillow, MASS MoCA to present Big Dance Theater

North Adams — Jacob’s Pillow Dance and MASS MoCA will present the Obie Award-winning ensemble Big Dance Theater in a sneak preview performance of the new work “17c,” which is based on the diaries of Samuel Pepys, Saturday, Oct. 28, at 8 p.m. at MASS MoCA.

Built around the problematic, unfiltered and detailed daily diary of 17th-century playboy Samuel Pepys, Big Dance Theater seeks to dismantle the historical figure by embodying the omitted voices of the women in Pepys’s diaries. “17c” will have its world premiere at Carolina Performing Arts in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Thursday, Nov. 9th and its New York premiere as part of Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Next Wave Festival Tuesday, Nov. 14.

Founded in 1991 and led by co-artistic directors Annie-B Parson and Paul Lazar, Big Dance Theater has received multiple New York Dance and Performance Awards, an Obie Award, and the first-ever Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award in 2007. Their work has been presented in the U.S. and at venues around the world.

Tickets are $20–$54. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact MASS MoCA at (413) 662-2111 or


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Stop NY Fracked Gas Pipeline to hold renewable energy fair

Rensselaer, N.Y. — Stop NY Fracked Gas Pipeline will present a renewable energy fair Saturday, Oct. 28, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Doane Stuart School, 199 Washington Avenue, Rensselaer, NY. The fair, which will be the largest indoor/outdoor renewable energy fair ever held in New York’s capital region, aims to educate residents about solar, wind and geothermal energy insulation, and other ways to make homes and work places more efficient and environmentally friendly. It will feature presentations, exhibitors, food and children’s activities.

Judith Enck, former Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator under President Barack Obama, will be the keynote speaker. Exhibits will include electric vehicles, a solar boat, solar-powered cell phone chargers, solar heat pumps, New York state climate change information, paying electric bills via renewable energy, investing in green energy funds, conservation, sustainability and how to lower carbon footprints and more. There will also be a children’s “Break Free From Fossil Fuels” project fair, a tour of Doane Stuart’s green roof, sustainably sourced products and crafts, storytelling and exhibits on composting, hydrofarming and permaculture.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information and a complete list of activities and exhibitors, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Becky Meier at (518) 781-4686 or


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Norman Rockwell Museum to honor poet Michelle Gillett

Michelle Gillett. Photo courtesy Norman Rockwell Museum

Stockbridge — On Saturday, Oct. 28, at 5:30 p.m., the Norman Rockwell Museum will present an evening of poetry to honor the memory of Berkshire poet and author Michelle Gillett. The evening of readings by family and friends will present “Coming About,” Gillett’s most recent work published posthumously by Four Way Books in 2017. An Edge columnist, a regular op-ed columnist for the Berkshire Eagle and editor for the Women’s Times, Gillett also wrote several award-winning books including “The Green Cottage,” “Rock & Spindle,” “Blinding the Goldfinches,” “A Kitchen Gardener’s Cookbook” and “In Celebration of Motherhood.” Gillett was also a dedicated friend and member of NRM, having served for 15 years as a trustee. The event is free and open to the public and a reception will follow. For more information, contact NRM at (413) 298-4100.


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Free flu clinic scheduled

Great Barrington — Fairview Hospital and the Berkshire Public Health Alliance will hold a public flu clinic Tuesday, Oct. 24, from 3 to 7 p.m. in the Monument Valley Regional Middle School gymnasium. Vaccinations, including a preservative-free vaccine, are available for anyone 6 months of age and older. Participants are advised to wear short-sleeved shirts. There is no charge for the vaccinations, but those who have insurance are asked to bring their insurance cards. As per a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation, nasal mist will not be offered. A Spanish-language interpreter will be available. For more information, call Heather Barbieri at (413) 854-9656.


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Arborists tend to trees at during an annual Arborists’ Day event at Berkshire Botanical Garden, {Photo courtesy Berkshire Botanical Garden

Berkshire Botanical Garden to host 14th annual Arborists’ Day

Stockbridge — On Wednesday, Oct. 25, from 9 a.m. to noon, arborists and tree specialists from the central and southern Berkshires will gather at Berkshire Botanical Garden for a day of community service, education and recreation. Started by BBG 14 years ago, Arborists’ Day has become a tradition during which landscape professionals gather to provide tree work at no cost to a chosen nonprofit organization. Beneficiaries in recent years have included Monument Mountain Regional High School, Norman Rockwell Museum, the Mount, Hebert Arboretum and the Bidwell House Museum. More than 20 arborists will attend the event, including representatives from Brush Hill Tree Service, Sweet Tree Service and Whalen Nursery in Great Barrington; Butternut Tree and Land Care in New Marlborough; Ingersoll Land Care and Race Mountain Tree Services in Sheffield; John W. Field Tree Service in Sandisfield; Marconia Inc. in Glendale; Treecology in Tyringham; and Shelter Tree in Petersham.

The public is invited to observe the morning’s activities, which will include tree pruning, removal and planting. For more information, contact BBG at (413) 298-3926 or