Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
Sunny
65°
Sunny
Hi 72° | Lo 35°

News

RECORDER FILE PHOTO
Nan Parati, owner of Elmer's Store in Ashfield, was given the annual Haas Entrepreneur of the Year award by the Franklin County Community Development Corp. during a ceremony Thursday.

Elmer’s Store owner Nan Parati of Ashfield wins Franklin County entrepreneurship award

Friday, May 22, 2015

ASHFIELD — Nan Parati never expected to buy Elmer’s Store when she first came to town for a visit in 2005 from New Orleans — where she also never expected to live for more than 25 years after visiting immediately after college. And she certainly never expected to be presented the annual Haas Entrepreneur of the Year award by the …

UMass Rising campaign exceeds $300 million goal more than a year ahead of schedule

Friday, May 22, 2015

AMHERST — The $300 million UMass Rising fundraising campaign has exceeded its goal more than a year ahead of schedule, the University of Massachusetts Amherst Foundation Board announced this week. “We have truly received exceptional and broad-based support in our drive to propel UMass Amherst to new heights,” said Robert Epstein, campaign co-chairman. “The $310 million that we have raised to date for …

Trio completes 48-state Vermont-to-Washington driving challenge in record time

Thursday, May 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — About a year ago, when John Frey told his wife, Jennifer Dieringer, that he was going to try to break the record for driving through all 48 states in the continental United States, she didn’t think much of it. “This is what he does. He finds some crazy challenge,” she said. …

Couple found dead in Greenfield identified as Dennis and Margaret Pekkala

Thursday, May 21, 2015

GREENFIELD — The Northwestern district attorney’s office has identified the couple found dead Wednesday in their 21 Prospect St. apartment as Dennis Pekkala, 54, and Margaret Pekkala, 53. Investigators released no further details Thursday about the circumstances of their deaths. Greenfield police found the two dead in their …

Fourth group of machinists graduates from Franklin County Technical School

Thursday, May 21, 2015

TURNERS FALLS — The Franklin County Technical School machine shop turned out its fourth group of machinists Thursday through the adult training program of the Franklin Hampshire Regional Employment Board. The 13-week Middle Skills Manufacturing Initiative graduated 13 students Thursday for a total of 43 trained since the …

Northampton City Council approves single-use plastic bag ban effective Jan. 1, 2016

Thursday, May 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — The City Council on Thursday officially banned single-use plastic bags in retail stores, joining a handful of other communities in Massachusetts which have done the same, including Cambridge, Brookline and Newburyport. The ordinance, which the council unanimously approved, takes effect Jan. 1, 2016 and will require …

Establishing trust funds one strategy for communities facing millions in unfunded liabilities for retirees’ benefits

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Predictions that unfunded health care expenses for municipal employees when they retire will total in the millions of dollars have prompted some communities to establish trust funds to begin setting aside money toward those costs. But the amounts …

Christopher Conley of Northampton charged with attempted murder for allegedly trying to poison seriously ill daughter

Thursday, May 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A city man accused of trying to kill his 7-year-old daughter by poisoning her with Liquid-Plumr allegedly told police Wednesday that he wanted to end her pain because she has a serious illness. Christopher W. Conley, 32, of 73 Barrett St., Apt. 5155, was ordered held …

Greenfield Community College eyes Amherst Regional Middle School for courses, programs

Thursday, May 21, 2015

AMHERST — School officials, local politicians and the leadership at Greenfield Community College are all eager to hold community college classes at the Amherst-Pelham Regional Middle School as part of a proposal that would move middle school classes …

Trade bill narrowly clears Senate hurdle

Thursday, May 21, 2015

WASHINGTON — In a triumph for President Barack Obama, sweeping legislation to strengthen the administration’s hand in global trade talks advanced toward Senate passage Thursday after a showdown vote that remained in doubt until the final moment. The …

Planning committee named for Burts Pit Road land leased to Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School

Thursday, May 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A committee of local residents, school and state officials has been formed to help decide the future of the 280-plus acres of former Northampton State Hospital land off Burts Pit Road leased to Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School. Smith Vocational Superintendent Jeffrey Peterson said the …

Area brief

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Northampton STUDENT ART EXHIBIT: Community members have a final chance to see the Northampton High School student art exhibit in the Hosmer Gallery at Forbes Library, which will remain on display until Tuesday. The exhibit features drawings, paintings, ceramics and other art by students of Northampton High School …

Area police news

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Amherst ∎ Brian James Knox, 38, of 464 Bay Road, was arrested at 1:51 a.m. Thursday on South East Street on charges of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol (second offense), negligent operation of a motor vehicle to endanger, failure to stay within marked …