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PETER MOST: Up in smoke

Two things are becoming increasingly clear. One, based on the facts and law, it is downright dopey for Great Barrington not to settle in its Community Impact Fees cases. Two, the town has persistently received bad counsel.

GB, South County Year in Review: Of mergers, bridges, cannabis and ‘blood money’

In the spirit of reflection and self-examination, herein lies The Edge's second annual Great Barrington year in review. It includes some select stories from other South County towns as well, along with embedded links to Edge stories for more information.

Dedication of the Du Bois homesite: A 50-year anniversary celebration

The original 1969 homesite dedication was deemed so controversial, in part because of Du Bois' embrace of communism late in his life, that no town officials attended the event.

Great Barrington responds to powerful plea, recognizes ‘Indigenous Peoples Day’

Randy Weinstein and Gwendolyn VanSant of the W.E.B. Du Bois Legacy Committee appeared before the board on Monday to ask town officials to consider recognizing the second Monday of October, the day on which Columbus Day is traditionally observed, as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

Looking back, looking ahead: Efforts to name a school after the legendary W.E.B. Du Bois

Now another movement to rename a different school building in Berkshire Hills is taking shape. Supporters of Du Bois are ramping up an effort to rename Monument Valley Regional Middle School in memory of Du Bois.

VanSant named Berkshire Business and Professional Women’s 2019 Woman of Achievement

VanSant works at the intersection of diversity leadership, equity and inclusion, and strategic planning. She has founded several initiatives based in the principles of equity and justice, the inherent dignity and worth of individuals, and our interconnected web of humanity.

A legacy of greatness: Community celebrates W.E.B. Du Bois’ 151st birthday

It was an afternoon of speakers and performers, ranging from scholars and academics to relatives, activists and musicians. And it was topped off by a birthday cake reception, complete with a rendition of Happy Birthday that somehow inspired even the tone-deaf to sing in key.

Bits & Bytes: W. E. B. Du Bois tribute; ‘The Vagina Monologues’ at the Whit; ‘Elegant Entertaining in the Gilded Age’

The program will also honor Du Bois biographer David Levering Lewis, who will receive the town’s first W. E. B. Du Bois Legacy Award honoring recipients for “embodying and preserving W. E. B. Du Bois’ legacy as a scholar and activist for freedom.”

Petition to rename regional middle school after scholar, civil rights advocate W.E.B. Du Bois to be on town meeting warrant

In an incident that garnered much publicity, the Berkshire Hills Regional School Committee in 2004 declined to name after Du Bois one of the two new regional schools it had just built.

New W. E. B. Du Bois exhibit highlights a Berkshires-grown ‘global citizen’

The exhibit, titled "W. E. B. Du Bois: Global Citizen Rooted in the Berkshires," was put together by Randy Weinstein, who runs the Du Bois Center at Great Barrington, with the help of the other Du Bois Center—the one at UMass Amherst, where many of Du Bois' papers are kept. The exhibit is part of the months-long celebration of the 150th anniversary of Du Bois' birth.

Bits & Bytes: Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service; ‘Rockwell, Roosevelt and the Four Freedoms’; Leah Penniman at Darrow School

In Interfaith Celebration program will begin with a service opened by Rev. Cara Davis and officiated by Wray Gunn of the Legacy Festival and Clinton Church Restoration with a performance by Olga Dunn School of Dance and songs from local congregations.

Great Barrington Selectmen appoint Du Bois legacy panel; begin town manager search; approve Tractor Supply

According to the selectmen, the committee's charge will be to "oversee several town-sponsored events and programs honoring Du Bois," including: the Du Bois Day Celebration; the annual Du Bois Festival (from Martin Luther King Day through Feb. 23); banner installations; collaboration with UMass Amherst and local educational institutions and arts, historical and community organizations; and more.

Great Barrington Selectboard: New tax rate lower than expected; bees buzz; DuBois gets a legacy committee; town mulls additional liquor licenses

One by one, those with existing liquor licenses strode to the podium to plead their cases. Unless one is particularly thirsty, it’s uncommon to come across all of these men in one night.

Veterans protest statue to memorialize ‘communist’ W.E.B. Du Bois

Last month, the board of trustees of the town's libraries endorsed the idea of putting a statue of the scholar, civil rights leader and Great Barrington native in front of the Mason Library on Main Street in the center of town. The project can only move forward if sufficient funds are raised and the Historic District Commission and the selectboard approve.

Another go-around: The complicated matter of naming a school after Du Bois

Monument Valley Regional Middle School was selected for the renaming rather than a second try at Muddy Brook Elementary due, in part, to the fact that Du Bois' life is actually taught in the middle school curriculum.

W.E.B. Du Bois’ complex legacy should be honored

In a letter to the editor, Joe Crochmal writes: "...in our world of sensationalized celebrities and public leaders, W. E. B. Du Bois serves as a shining example of how one passionate and motivated individual, from humble beginnings, can drive change in the world..."

Tribute to Du Bois’ 150th birthday kicks off with new exhibit and youth involvement

The birthday events for Great Barrington's most famous native son seem to signal a newfound appreciation of the civil rights leader, who had not been fully embraced by the community because of his sometimes-controversial past.
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