Monday, July 15, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

Bits & Bytes: BerkshireSPEAKS; Trachette Jackson at Williams; Blue Rider Stables fundraiser; John Davidson at Spectrum Playhouse; LGBTQ conversation; Dave Fromm at Stockbridge Library

This year’s BerkshireSPEAKS event will feature six Berkshire trailblazers and visionaries sharing their inspirational stories.

Third annual BerkshireSPEAKS

Mary Pope Osborne.
Author Mary Pope Osborne.

Great Barrington — The third annual BerkshireSPEAKS will take place Sunday, Sept. 18, at 1:30 pm at Hevreh of Southern Berkshire.

BerkshireSPEAKS is an opportunity for the community to hear from local residents who have had a significant impact on the Berkshires and beyond. This year’s event will feature six Berkshire trailblazers and visionaries sharing their inspirational stories. This year’s speakers are Soldier On CEO John Downing; Multicultural BRIDGE founder and CEO Gwendolyn Hampton VanSant; author, journalist and radio host John Hockenberry; realtor, teacher and arts supporter Nancy Kalodner; “The Magic Tree House” series author Mary Pope Osborne; and Massachusetts State Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli. A reception with the speakers will follow the presentations.

Tickets to BerkshireSPEAKS are $15 online before noon on Friday, Sept. 16, and $18 at the door. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or call Hevreh at (413) 528-6378.

–E.E.

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Mathematician Trachette Jackson to speak at Williams College

Trachette Jackson.
Trachette Jackson.

Williamstown — Mathematician and University of Michigan professor Trachette Jackson will present a talk on mathematical biology as the Oliver Lecturer and Class of 1960 speaker at Williams College on Thursday, Sept. 15, at 7:30 p.m. in the Thompson chemistry building’s Wege Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Jackson will speak about how cross-disciplinary approaches using computational and mathematical modeling techniques offer a better understanding of how to harness biological advances for human benefit. She will describe the field of mathematical biology, highlight its historical successes, and discuss the ways it is being used to solve biological challenges.

After graduating from Arizona State University in 1994, Jackson earned her M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Washington in 1996 and 1998. She joined the University of Michigan faculty as an assistant professor in 2000, and was promoted to professor in 2003. She was later appointed as co-principal investigator of the University of Michigan’s SUBMERGE program, an interdisciplinary program that allows undergraduates to explore mathematical modeling and quantitative analysis for experimental biology, and is now a full professor in the mathematics department.

Jackson’s mathematical oncology research is primarily focused on using mathematical modeling and in vivo tumor vascularization to better understand tumor growth as well as the vascular structure of molecular, cellular, and tissue levels. She became the second African-American woman Sloan Fellow in mathematics in 2003, and won the James S. McDonnell 21st Century Scientist Award in 2005 and the Blackwell-Tapia Prize in 2010.

For building locations on the Williams campus, consult the online map or call the Office of Communications at (413) 597-4277.

–E.E.

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Blue Rider Stables to celebrate 25th anniversary

Stockbridge — Blue Rider Stables will celebrate 25 years with the fundraising benefit “A Horse of a Different Color” on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 6 – 10 p.m. at Chesterwood. The evening will include silent and live auctions, live music and dancing, local artisanal foods, and signature drinks.

“A Horse of a Different Color” will begin on the piazza behind the studio with hors d’oeuvres, signature cocktails and music by pianist Pete Schneider. At 7 p.m., the festivities will then move to the woodshed for music and dancing with Rob Sanzone and the Picky Bastards. An open bar and local artisanal foods provided by Berkshire Mountain Bakery, the Meat Market, Cricket Creek Farm, and Chocolate Springs will be featured throughout the evening. A live auction will be conducted by auctioneer Chris Lee, and both silent and live auctions will showcase donated items by local merchants and businesses.

Tickets to “A Horse of a Different Color” are $75 each and $125 per couple. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Blue Rider Stables at (413) 528-5299.

–E.E.

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John Davidson to perform at Spectrum Playhouse

John Davidson.
John Davidson.

Lee — John Davidson, star of stage and television as well as a resident of Lenox, will bring his singer/songwriter side to Saturday Night Liv, hosted by Liv Cummins, at the Spectrum Playhouse on Friday, Sept. 16, and Saturday, Sept. 17, at 7:30 p.m. Also performing will be magician Carl Seiger, a Tyringham resident; comic Danny Bloom; the Berkshire Children’s Theater; and sketch comedy troupe the Really Convincing Players featuring Sarah Mitchell, Andrew Joffe, Tony Carrano, Lora Lee Ecobelli and Katelyn Pekrul.

Davidson is well known to TV viewers as the host of “That’s Incredible,” “Hollywood Squares,” and his own talk shows as well as many appearances as guest host of the Tonight Show, filling in for Johnny Carson. He is a Broadway stalwart and is seen regularly in Las Vegas showrooms. He now writes and performs his own original songs.

Tickets are $20 general admission and $10 for seniors and students. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or call the Spectrum Playhouse at (413) 394-5023.

–E.E.

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LGBTQ community to meet to discuss social options

Pittsfield — On Saturday, Sept. 17, from 1 – 3 p.m. at the Colonial Theatre, longtime LGBTQ organizers Oskar Hallig, Ed Sedarbaum of Rainbow Seniors of Berkshire County, and Jason Verchot will join forces to hold a community conversation, the purpose is to solve the often-voiced problem that there are few opportunities for members of the community to meet one another for socializing, community building, and planning. All members of the Berkshire LGBTQ community are welcome to attend and are asked to RSVP to ed@berkshirerainbowseniors.org.

–E.E.

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Author Dave Fromm to speak at the Stockbridge Library

1460072856956Stockbridge — On Saturday, Sept. 17, at 4 p.m., the Stockbridge Library, Museum & Archives will host a reading and book signing with Dave Fromm, author of “The Duration,” a new novel set in the Berkshires.

Set in the haunted hills of Berkshire County, Fromm’s debut novel “The Duration” follows four childhood friends as they reunite in their wintry hometown to revisit the ghosts of their pasts and confront the mysteries that occupied most of their youth. Dave Fromm is also the author of “Expatriate Games” (Skyhorse Publishing, 2008). A native of Lenox, he now lives in Longmeadow with his wife and children.

This event is free and open to the public. Books will be available for purchase and a percentage of the proceeds will benefit the Stockbridge Library, Museum & Archives. For more information, contact the Library at (413) 298-5501.

–E.E.

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