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Editorial: Northampton police firearms training can be safely conducted

Thursday, October 23, 2014

For one hour Monday and several hours next Friday morning, students at the R.K. Finn Ryan Road School will hear the sound of gunfire during the school day while city police undertake annual state-mandated firearms training at a site within hearing distance of the school. At least one school parent is incensed about this and plans to keep her child home those days. She is not concerned that errant bullets …

Editorial: Northampton business leader Dan Yacuzzo saw value in togetherness

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Dan Yacuzzo could probably have retired when he sold the Eastside Grill six years ago. After owning and successfully managing it with his wife Gail for 23 years, the couple was due for a break. But Yacuzzo’s work wasn’t done. Yacuzzo didn’t just seek business success for himself. By taking on a pivotal …

Editorial: Is orange the new black and blue? Visitors hijack a pumpkin festival

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

New England town. Check. Party with a color theme. Check. Police officers suited up for trouble and toting tear gas. Check. And later, resolutions of “never again.” Check. Residents of Amherst no doubt suffered a few flashbacks to the Blarney Blowout as they followed news of last weekend’s Keene Pumpkin Festival in the southern New Hampshire town. The web came alive over the …

Editorial: Misty day brings close to state horse racing

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

When thoroughbred racing ended at the Three County Fair in 2006, horse owners shook their heads. The loss of even small yearly venues like the Northampton track made it harder to sustain their business. The closing of Suffolk …

Editorial: Reforms must help protect funeral home customers

Monday, October 6, 2014

As the debacle swirling around the now defunct Ryder Funeral Home reached its peak last spring, several funeral home directors interviewed by the Gazette lamented the black eye given to an industry built on community trust. When that trust is jeopardized, as was the case with William W. …

Editorial: UMass football’s return to Amherst shows both promise and peril

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The return of UMass football to McGuirk Stadium in Amherst had the trappings of a joyful homecoming: The smell of sausages and cigars mingling in the autumn air, the laughter of returning alumni and new students, the ka-ching …

Editorial: Two recent bicycle accidents offer reminder on need for safety measures

Friday, October 3, 2014

A pair of bicycle accidents last week involving Northampton High School students are a reminder that safety measures help minimize injuries. A 14-year-old girl suffered a concussion Sept. 23 when she collided with a minivan in front of her home on Prospect Avenue, and a boy riding in …

Editorial: Police informant program gets needed review at UMass

Thursday, October 2, 2014

A tragedy befell the University of Massachusetts Amherst community last Oct. 4. That is when Eric L. Sinacori, 20, a UMass junior who aspired to be a physical therapist, died of acute heroin poisoning, according to his death …

Amherst must confront lack of downtown parking

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Amherst is facing a serious parking squeeze downtown and town officials must take a hard look at what the construction of two projects with 114 housing units — but few parking spaces — in the northern end of …

Editorial: Electricity costs pinch New England, but relief may be on horizon

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A recent drop in gasoline prices helps only a little to buffer news that electricity costs will rise sharply this winter, making it more expensive to keep lights on in the darkest season and delivering a blow to …

Editorial: Tragedy of Ebola hits home in Hampshire County

Sunday, September 28, 2014

A local face was put on the terrible Ebola epidemic centered in West Africa with the news last week that a popular Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School drumming and dance teacher is grieving the deaths of …

Editorial: A roadside attraction bows out on Amherst Town Common

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The information booth on the Amherst Town Common will soon be gone. Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce Director Donald Courtemanche says the little yellow shack that provided information to visitors for nearly 50 years will be missed, but …

Editorial: Intimate partner violence must not be hidden problem

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Thirty-nine witnesses took the stand in Hampshire Superior Court — one for each year Jessica Ann Pripstein lived. They testified to enable a jury to establish Ryan D. Welch’s guilt or innocence in Pripstein’s murder just minutes into Feb. 20, 2012, after she’d picked up the check at …