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Weekend Travel Pick: Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival

Image of Hot Air Balloon. Caption: Ever wonder what a hot air balloon ride feels like? Why not treat yourself to a tethered launch? You might get hooked on the feeling! Photo by Robin Catalano.

A few facts you might not know about hot-air balloons: it’s hot—as in, skin-prickling hot—riding directly beneath their burners. Hot-air balloons also rise off the ground a lot faster than you’d think, and can vertically travel 10 feet or more per second.

Farmers market coupons distributed to Williamstown seniors

Franz Burnet-Gocht receives his farmers market coupons from Marion Quinn-Jowett; photo by Sheila Velazquez.

WILLIAMSTOWN — Elders lined up bright and early on the first day coupon books became available at the Williamstown Council on Aging’s Harper Center. Each book contains ten coupons valued at $2.50 each, which can be used to purchase fruits, vegetables, and honey in markets across Massachusetts.

Sheila VelazquezSheila Velazquez is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in more than 100 print newspapers and magazines, including Grit, New Woman, the Hartford Courant, the New Haven Register, the San Antonio Express-News and Bay Area Parent.…

Phoenix Rising — 48 Hours in Portland, Maine

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If you've never been to Portland, Maine, you'll be amazed at how this just-right sized city hums with activity in the arts, dining, entertainment, and (of course) miles and miles of gorgeous views.

The City of Portland, Maine rises above the waters of Portland Harbor, which is filled with sailing vessels and pleasure boats. The landmark Time and Temperature building can be seen, reading 5:39; photo by Benjamin Williamson.

Berkshire County legal system comes under the gaze of court watchers

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Berkshire County Courthouse, photo by Alexius Horatius; [CC BY-SA 3.0] via Wikimedia Commons.

Stirred by the popular will across the United States to enact meaningful criminal justice reform, the Berkshires gets ready to train eyes and ears on the court system.
Berkshire County Courthouse, Pittsfield, Mass., photo by AlexiusHoratius; [ CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons.

TLC #70 — The Berkshire Music Project Launches with Lady Moon & The Eclipse

Lady Moon & The Eclipse released their debut EP, "Believe" in 2018, and are currently producing their full length album "Journey to the Cosmic Soul," due out in 2019; photo by Jose Cotto.

In this episode, we speak with Josh Bennett, founder of the Berkshire Music Project, which seeks to grow the area's live music scene. The first show features Afrobeat and R&B-influenced Lady Moon & The Eclipse; photo by Jose Cotto.

Stop & Shop Workers Strike across New England

North Adams Stop & Shop workers assemble in the early hours of the UFCW strike against the supermarket chain on Thursday, April 11, 2019. Union steward Bill Laviolette (front, giving the thumbs up) coordinated the location actions; photo by Jason Velázquez.

https://media.blubrry.com/cornbread_cafe/p/www.greylockglass.com/podcasts/topleftcorner/gg_tlc_20190412_ep069.mp3Podcast (top-left-corner): Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS
Talks set to continue as union and company measure each other’s resolve from across parking lots.

NORTH ADAMS — Today is Saturday, April 13, 2019, I am your host, Jason Velazquez, and I’d like to welcome you to Episode #69 of our flagship podcast, the Top Left Corner.

What you heard coming into this program was the scene outside the Stop & Shop in Chicopee, Mass.,…

The Pillar Profiles:
Lindsey Schmid

Editors Note: What does it mean when we say that someone is a “pillar of the community?” How you answer depends a lot on your experiences and intersections with the people who, in your mind, help support and strengthen the areas of local life that are most important to us. In this new series, we’ll surely tread some well worn paths in search of those personalities. We’ll blaze new trails looking for emerging leaders, as well as expand our vision of where to look for these pillars of our community.…

Your lawn mower misses you. After a long winter, it’s hungry.

[source: Pexels]

It’s a bright sunny Sunday morning with a bit of Spring chill in the air and the recent rains have worked well to wash away the curse of winter from our yards and our minds. There are random fallen branches to pick up, flower beds to rake out, and, of course, the lawnmower to get running. 

After being in the lawn mower repair business for the better part of thirty years, as both a mechanic and a shop owner, I can assure you that if you have neglected your lawn mower you are not alone — and there is certainly no shame in it.…

A View from the Tracks: Day Tripping in Chatham & Ghent, New York

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A lonesome balloon glides silently above field and forest near Tice Hill in the Ghent dawn; photo by Zach Neven Creative, Columbia County New York.

The morning
sun reflects off the remnants of a hard crust of snow with a luminous quality that
makes the towns of Ghent and Chatham, New York, appear suffused by stage
lights. It’s been a long winter—about six months’ worth, by most people’s
accounts, though they use much more colorful language; like the Inuit and their
multiple words for snow, residents of upstate New York have a remarkable array
of vivid, sometimes profane, epithets for the season. On this 50-degree day in
March, the first hint that winter is finally releasing its skeletal grip on the
region, people are emerging from their woodstove-warmed saltboxes and Cape Cods,
primed and ready to enjoy the landscape and a sun no longer obscured by clouds
heavy with the promise of more white stuff.…

Solo-preneur Spotlight:
Bell Bottom Bleus

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Bell Bottom Blues, one of North Adams' emerging cottage industries, combines artisan sensibilities with a passion that make for a compelling local-girl-makes-good story; submitted image.

By CASSIE LORDSpecial to the Greylock Glass

NORTH ADAMS — It’s a cold spring morning as I enter a spacious Victorian home on the outskirts of North Adams. I’m welcomed in by a small, easygoing woman with a smile, and her well-behaved cats and dog. As we conversate throughout the house, we pass by antique rocking chairs and vintage furniture, wandering our way up to the second floor. The “work room,” the driving force of Bell Bottom Blues, is clearly the room she spends most of her time in.…

March 15, 2019:
International Youth Climate Strike

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Members of the student group, R.E.V., at Mt. Greylock Regional School, Karen McComish, Sophie Jones, Maddy Art, and Ella Dudley speak at the Feburary 24 meeting of Greylock Together at the UNO Center in North Adams; photo by Jason Velázquez.

The youth of Earth have a message for its leaders today: You have failed to lead, so now you’ve forced us to.

By synchronizing worldwide demonstrations demanding action to reduce the human activities driving climate change, young people from elementary school on up through college are staging sit-ins, walkouts, marches, strikes, and town halls to make it clear to elected officials that they won’t sit by idly as the planet burns. Or floods. Or is ravaged by extreme weather. Or all of the above.…

May the Road Rise Up to Meet You: St. Patrick’s Day Festivities in Albany & Troy

Albany pulls out all the stops in their St. Patrick's Day festivities, including the parade, which starts at 2:00 p.m.; photo courtesy Discover Albany.

On a swell of
immigration that began in the 1640s and continued all the way through (and
beyond) the Great Famine of the mid-nineteenth century, Irish immigrants made a
place for themselves in large Eastern United States port cities like New York
and Boston. But as jobs became less plentiful, many branched out, heading up
the Hudson River from New York City and landing in the newly prosperous
manufacturing centers in Troy and Albany. According to
Discover Albany, thanks to this influx, the city currently boasts the
fourth-largest Irish population in the country.…

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