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Business Briefs: Barnbrook Realty joins Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices; National Women Build Week; Massachusetts Whale Trail; grant for Berkshire Children & Families; Salisbury Bank scholarships

Telling the story of the Commonwealth through its connection to whales, the Massachusetts Whale Trail features nearly 40 stops along the coast as well as a literary tangent connecting sites in western Massachusetts.

Barnbrook Realty joins Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices

Great Barrington — Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, part of the HSF Affiliates LLC family of real estate brokerage franchise networks, has announced that Barnbrook Realty has joined the network, operating as Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Barnbrook Realty.

The full-service brokerage remains independently owned and operated. With network membership, Barnbrook Realty agents gain access to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices’ Global Network Platform, a real-estate tool suite that powers lead generation, marketing support, social media, video production and distribution, and more. The brand also provides international listing syndication, professional education and the Luxury Collection marketing program for high-end listings.

Broker-partners Maureen White-Kirkby and Mary White expect to grow their brokerage under the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices flag. They will recruit more of Berkshire County’s top real estate professionals in the process and continue gaining market share.

Barnbrook Realty will commemorate its brand transition Thursday, May 24, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house at its headquarters at 271 Main St. Sen. Adam Hines, D-Pittsfield, and Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli, D-Lenox, will attend the event, as will members of the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce, industry representatives, clients and agents. The brokerage’s new cabernet-and-white yard signs have already begun appearing in the marketplace.

–E.E.

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Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity to celebrate National Women Build Week

Participants in Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanities 2017 Women Build event. Photo courtesy Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity

Pittsfield — Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s are engaging women nationwide to work together to build Habitat homes during this year’s National Women Build Week from Saturday, May 5, through Sunday, May 13, and also for an additional five weeks following the national event.

On Sunday, April 29, local volunteers will start Women Build month by attending a hands-on construction-training workshop that will give them the necessary tools to build on the construction site. Groups and individuals can register online to participate.

National Women Build Week, a nationwide initiative created by Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s in 2008, has brought together more than 117,000 all-women construction volunteers to build or repair homes with nearly 5,000 families over the past 10 years. This year, Lowe’s donated nearly $2 million to Habitat for Humanity to support the 2018 National Women Build Week, which is set to take place in 300 communities nationwide.

–E.E.

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State tourism office and 1Berkshire announce Massachusetts Whale Trail

Herman Melville’s Arrowhead. Photo courtesy Berkshire County Historical Society

Pittsfield — 1Berkshire is partnering with the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism to roll out the Massachusetts Whale Trail, a major collaboration among Bay State tourism destinations for the promotion of assets stretching from Provincetown to Pittsfield. Telling the story of the Commonwealth through its connection to whales, the Massachusetts Whale Trail features nearly 40 stops along the coast as well as a literary tangent connecting sites in western Massachusetts. Whale Trail partners include museums, attractions, historic sites, educational centers and tours.

The Massachusetts Whale Trail boasts several regional sites and experiences associated with the marine mammal, of which there are currently 11 breeds off the Commonwealth’s coast. The trail contains eight stops in the Berkshires, including Herman Melville’s Arrowhead and Monument Mountain. These museums and attractions emphasize the region’s connection to whales by creating opportunities for visitors to peek through the lens of Melville’s maritime Massachusetts during the 19th century.

To promote the Massachusetts Whale Trail, MOTT has developed itineraries highlighting interactive experiences for visitors by theme. Among some of the activities released is a literary enthusiast’s track and an itinerary for outdoor adventurers, with whale watching tours and sites to experience marine life first hand. Sites along the trail will also be launching special promotions and packages in support of the trail using the hashtag #whaletrailMA.

–E.E.

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Berkshire Children & Families receives grant from Jewish Women’s Foundation

Pittsfield — Berkshire Children and Families has announced its receipt of a $2,000 grant from the Jewish Women’s Foundation of Berkshire County. The grant is in support of BCF’s Kids 4 Harmony program, an El Sistema-inspired program of intensive classical music education for social change.  The program takes place in Morningside Community School as well as in Brayton Elementary School in North Adams.

The program focuses on peer teaching, public performance and ensemble participation. With the support of the foundation, Kids 4 Harmony participants have performed at the Boston Garden before a Celtics game as part of the Longy School of Music’s Sistema Side-by-Side; and the annual Berkshire Symphony Family Day at Williams College, where students performed with the Berkshire Symphony. Additionally, Kids 4 Harmony students participated in a workshop on “Found Sound” with Williams professor Matt Gold and a master class with jazz pianist Ted Rosenthal.

–E.E.

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Salisbury Bank accepting scholarship applications

Lakeville, Conn. — Salisbury Bank is accepting applications for its annual Time to Shine scholarship program. Multiple scholarships may be awarded in the amount of $2,500 each to assist eligible students seeking college degrees in a variety of programs.

Eligible students must be residents of Litchfield, Berkshire, Columbia, Dutchess, Orange or Ulster counties, and must be currently enrolled in a public high school, vocational, technical or private school; be a homeschool student affiliated with such a school; or be a graduate or GED recipient entering their first year of college. Applicants must be planning to enter an accredited college or university as a first year undergraduate student for the 2018–19 academic year. Applicants will be evaluated according to a 100-point system that takes into account financial need, academic achievement, community service, volunteerism and leadership. The top scorers will also be interviewed by the bank’s scholarship committee.

Online application packets are available. Completed applications and transcripts must be received by 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 8.

–E.E.

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