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State Sen. Benjamin Downing in final year cites opioid epidemic, changing demographics as key issues

Saturday, February 6, 2016

BOSTON — After almost 10 years in office, state Sen. Benjamin B. Downing has checked many items off an impressive to-do list. The Pittsfield Democrat has worked to increase the amount of solar energy in the state by more than 500 percent, and supported efforts to rebuild college campuses. But Downing, who will be leaving his post come January, says other important issues remain, from demographic divisions in the state’s …

Friday’s high school basketball: Mary Whalen’s putback seals win for Smith Academy

Friday, February 5, 2016

Sophomore Mary Whalen pulled down her 10th rebound on the offensive end and scored the game-winner with 12.1 seconds left as the Smith Academy girls basketball team beat Pioneer Regional, 48-46, Friday in Hatfield. to go to put the Falcons ahead of Pioneer Valley (6-10) for good. Whalen finished with seven points for the Falcons (7-9, 2-4 Franklin South). Senior Ashley Higgins had …

Gazette Field Hockey Player of the Year: Jordyn Roberts, Frontier Regional

Friday, February 5, 2016

HIGH SCHOOL FIELD HOCKEY Player of the Year Jordyn Roberts, senior, Frontier Regional 2015-16 season highlights: Roberts, who finished with 17 goals and 10 assists, scored in 15 of Frontier’s 21 games. She had at least a point in both of the Red Hawks’ postseason wins. Her three points in the Western Massachusetts …

Gazette High School Golf Player of the Year: Ryan Chrabascz, Belchertown

Monday, February 1, 2016

HIGH SCHOOL GOLF PLAYER OF THE YEAR Ryan Chrabascz, sophomore, Belchertown Season highlights: Chrabascz won the Western Massachusetts Division 2 Tournament individual title by shooting a 6-over-par 75 at Cranwell Golf Club in Lenox, leading the Orioles to …

School lunch menus

Friday, January 29, 2016

Amherst-Pelham MONDAY: Crispy chicken patty sandwich, baked Tater Tots, cucumber coins, applesauce, orange TUESDAY: Mozzarella sticks, marinara, carrots, celery sticks, peaches, Barlett pear WEDNESDAY: Cheeseburger, corn, vegetarian baked beans, pineapple cup, banana THURSDAY: Two soft tacos, brown rice, black beans, diced pears, orange FRIDAY: Cheese pizza, broccoli florets, …

Friends and neighbors

Friday, January 29, 2016

Easthampton Aleksander Joseph Kochapski and Joshua J. Picard were named to the fall semester dean’s list at Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston. Florence Bridget Melinda Keefe has been named to the fall semester dean’s list at Norwich University, Northfield, Vermont. Holyoke Community College The following local students …

Pittsfield state representative will not seek open Senate seat

Friday, January 29, 2016

State Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvoir of Pittsfield said Thursday she plans to forgo a bid to replace Sen. Benjamin Downing, D-Pittsfield, and instead seek re-election to her House seat. That leaves state Rep. William “Smitty” Pignatelli, D-Lenox, as the key hopeful considering a run for the Senate seat representing …

Registry of Motor Vehicles expands service options for seniors through partnership with councils on aging

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Senior citizens in Easthampton and other communities across the state no longer have to wait in line at the local Registry of Motor Vehicles branch to renew their driver’s licenses or car registrations. Through a new initiative announced Thursday, the state Department of Transportation and RMV have partnered …

Two House members in Berkshire County may seek Senate seat now held by Benjamin Downing

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Two Berkshire County Democrats say that the announcement by state Sen. Benjamin B. Downing that he will not seek a sixth term this year not only is a tremendous loss for his western Massachusetts constituents but also a possible opportunity for their own careers. “I’m very sad to …

Wednesday’s high schools: Amherst hockey skates past Greenfield and into postseason

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Junior Max Hopley scored three goals and dished out two assists as the Amherst Regional ice hockey team beat Greenfield, 8-2, at Orr Rink Wednesday. The Hurricanes (9-1-3, 8-1-1 Fay-Wright), who scored five goals in the third to break a 2-2 tie, qualified for the postseason with the …

Wednesday’s high school wrestling: Hampshire beats Gateway in battle of undermanned teams

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Two undermanned wrestling teams met at Gateway Regional High School on Wednesday. Hampshire Regional proved the stronger of the two, defeating the Gators 40-15 with just 10 of the 14 weight classes featuring competitors. Brandon Daniels and Dylan Berthume picked up Gateway’s two pin victories against Max Abel …

Tuesday’s high school basketball: Stephanie Start’s triple-double powers Smith Voke

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Stephanie Start’s triple-double paved the way as the Smith Vocational girls basketball team cruised past Westfield Tech, 54-9, in Westfield Tuesday. Start had 27 points, including 25 in the first half, 12 rebounds and 10 steals as the Vikings (6-6, 3-1 Tri-County South) took control early and ran …

Tuesday’s alpine skiing: Frontier Regional duo races girls to second

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Alli Zera and Coriann Delaney are helping the Frontier Regional girls skiing team knock on the winner’s door. The Red Hawks finished second in the South Division at the fifth PVIAC alpine ski race of the season, Tuesday at Berkshire East in Charlemont. Zera took fourth place on …