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University of Massachusetts students marking the "Halfway to Blarney" event at Amherst Town Houses on Meadow Street Saturday.

Amherst police keep ‘Halfway to Blarney’ revelry in check

Saturday, September 20, 2014

AMHERST — Police dispersed a crowd of more than 200 University of Massachusetts Amherst students and their friends celebrating the halfway point to St. Patrick’s Day at the Amherst Town Houses at 50 Meadow St. Saturday. The festivities, dubbed “Halfway to Blarney,” began early in the afternoon amid concern from town and UMass officials that the party could become as …

UMass students applaud findings in Davis report; say police overreacted

Saturday, September 20, 2014

AMHERST — Two days after the release of a report critical of they way police and University of Massachusetts officials handled the March 8 “Blarney Blowout,” students interviewed on campus Saturday afternoon said they were not surprised by criticisms contained in the report. “I think they made a lot of assumptions that were …

Early morning fire Saturday destroys family home in Leeds

Saturday, September 20, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A stubborn, fast-moving fire displaced two adults, two children, and their pets at a Leeds home Saturday morning. Nobody was hurt in the blaze. A cause has not yet been determined. Firefighters from Northampton, Easthampton, Westhampton and Williamsburg responded after a 911 call from a resident of the home reported smoke …

Questions raised about operations of Patriot Care Corp., seeking medical marijuana dispensary license in Greenfield

Saturday, September 20, 2014

A company that was awarded a medical marijuana dispensary license in Lowell and is vying for licenses in Boston and Greenfield appears to have overstated the scope of its operations at a counseling and research program for HIV and AIDS patients at dispensaries it owns in other cities. …

New England Natural Bakers submits bid for former Oxford Foods property in Deerfield

Saturday, September 20, 2014

DEERFIELD — The smell of pickles has long since faded from downtown Deerfield, but residents may find a new aroma wafting their way soon — freshly baked granola. New England Natural Bakers Inc., a Greenfield-based company that makes organic granola and muesli, submitted an offer of $38,500 per …

Sunderland special Town meeting votes to buy North Main Street property for affordable housing

Saturday, September 20, 2014

SUNDERLAND — The town will purchase a 2.82-acre lot on North Main Street for $265,000, which it plans to use to increase its proportion of affordable housing units for seniors. The purchase was approved by voters at a special Town Meeting Friday night and passed by just 1 …

Massachusets environmental secretary raises concerns about path of proposed Tennessee Gas pipeline

Friday, September 19, 2014

The state’s top environmental official has written to the federal government calling for careful review of Tennessee Gas Pipeline’s proposed Northeast Direct Natural Gas Pipeline, arguing the route is a highly sensitive environmental area. A “preliminary, non-exhaustive” state review of the route shows that it would pass through …

Republican Senate candidate Brian Herr campaigns at CRD Metalworks in Williamsburg

Friday, September 19, 2014

WILLIAMSBURG — Republican U.S. Senate candidate Brian J. Herr brought his campaign to Williamsburg on Friday where he visited CRD Metalworks at 17 Hyde Hill Road. Herr, who is challenging Sen. Edward J. Markey, responded to a request …

Chiefs: Retreat wasn't an option from Blarney Blowout scene

Friday, September 19, 2014

AMHERST — While two police chiefs in Amherst agree unruly crowds should be handled differently next time, they insisted Friday that retreat was not an option at the Blarney Blowout. Amherst Police Chief Scott Livingstone and University of …

Easthampton High, Pioneer Valley Performing Arts and Mosier Elementary in South Hadley show improved MCAS rankings

Friday, September 19, 2014

Three area schools moved up in state rankings for meeting achievement gaps in Friday’s release of Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System test results. Meanwhile, most area school districts, including Amherst and Northampton, remained steady, and many either met or …

Fire in bucket holding cigarette butts quickly extinguished at Northampton home

Friday, September 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Alert passersby helped make quick work of extinguishing a fire Friday morning outside a home on Westhampton Road. Fire officials said cigarettes were the cause of the blaze, which was quickly put out on the deck of the home at 383 Westhampton Road. The fire was …

Hampshire Superior Court judge approves injunctiion preventing William Ryder from selling funeral home business

Friday, September 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A judge Friday granted a request from the state attorney general’s office prohibiting William W. Ryder from selling his embattled funeral home business or any of its assets until victims are compensated. The decision may give some hope to the 63 people who say they gave …