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On The Run with John Stifler: It’s officially Tuesday race season in Northampton
04-05-2024 1:47 PM

That hill in the third mile is a little toughie. You’ve been pacing yourself around the large field next to the Mill River, keeping mind, lungs and legs together, and ahead lurks the abrupt turn into the woods where the trail rises gradually, then...

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Fit to Play with Jim Johnson: Exercise Prescriptions Are Just The Beginning
04-01-2024 3:00 PM

Exercise prescriptions first started in 1968 when Ken Cooper recommended that everyone amass 40 points a week to achieve aerobic fitness. For example, this could be achieved by running one eight-minute mile a day, five days a week. Cooper’s...


The Real Score: Beware the March “Madness” of sports betting
03-14-2024 1:01 PM

This Sunday, the March Madness brackets will be set, enabling millions of sport consumers to place bets that will total in the billions of dollars (you should also expect to see some ads from the sports books…).This week, in recognition of March...


Fit to Play with Jim Johnson: Our Bodies At Risk
03-04-2024 8:28 PM

I have studied the human body for around 60 years and I am still in awe. Evolution has given us awesome bodies that move with fluidity and grace, withstand heat, cold, and altitude, and possess the ability to adapt to almost any environment. Our...


On The Run with John Stifler: Marathon runner Kiptum at the height of his powers upon death
03-01-2024 3:23 PM

The running world barely had time to marvel at how 24-year-old Kelvin Kiptum came within sight of breaking the two-hour barrier in the marathon before what promised to be a thrilling career came to a sudden end last month in a car crash that took...


The Real Score: You Need to Calm Down, Embracing the Taylor Swift Effect on the NFL
02-15-2024 2:04 PM

Taylor Swift won this year’s Super Bowl. I mean… the Kansas City Chiefs won this year’s Super Bowl. If you don’t know by now, pop star Taylor Swift and Kansas City Chiefs’ tight end Travis Kelce are dating. The relationship caused a media stir as...


Fit to Play with Jim Johnson: One game, 125 commercials
02-05-2024 3:49 PM

I watched a lot of college football this year and am happy it’s over. Next year will be longer as eight teams are added to the playoffs. Baseball in November, basketball and ice hockey in June, football in February — will seasons ever...


On The Run with John Stifler: Come one, come all
02-02-2024 4:47 PM

Recreational running has been part of mainstream American culture for fifty years. Nowadays anyone wanting to run a 5-kilometer road race can find one somewhere nearby. Marathons have grown so popular they have waiting lists.Track meets are different....


Guest columnist Jonathan Kahane: Can’t let mistaken criticisms of column go unanswered
01-31-2024 6:33 PM

By JONATHAN KAHANE Now that some of the dust has settled since my last guest column [“Haunted by questions with no good answers,” Gazette, Dec. 28], I will take this opportunity to try and rectify distortions that were submitted in letters during the...


Columnist Richard Fein: Israel/Hamas War: Israeli trauma, Palestinian catastrophe
01-21-2024 7:01 PM

By RICHARD FEIN

Gaza’s civilian population: Hamas has ruled Gaza since defeating the Fatah faction in 2006 elections. Hamas then killed 459 Fatah operatives. The general population has suffered as Hamas expropriated billions of dollars in foreign donations and local...


Columnist Rev. Andrea Ayvazian: Invovocations, benedictions: Still striving for the right note
01-19-2024 7:01 PM

By ANDREA AYVAZIAN

Earlier this month, I was asked to offer the benediction at the Northampton inauguration ceremony, when elected officials are sworn in to their positions of leadership in our city — a request that I was honored to fulfill.These inauguration...


My Turn: Planet wrecker in chief — Part 2
01-18-2024 7:43 PM

By RUSS VERNON-JONES

Last month I wrote about the damage the U.S. is causing to the global climate by exporting huge amounts of oil and LNG (liquefied natural methane gas) — the most of any country in the world. I shared the information that the fossil fuel industry wants...


Columnist Johanna Neumann: Halfway there — 2023 a year for major green projects in Amherst
01-17-2024 3:58 PM

By JOHANNA NEUMANN

Happy 2024. After my last column, I got feedback from a reader who pointed out that I missed a topic in my round-up of environmental progress in 2023. She mentioned that I had completely failed to mention Amherst voters overwhelmingly approving plans...


Guest columnist Patrick O’Connor: Out of school and in jail
01-17-2024 3:58 PM

By PATRICK O’CONNOR

There is a crisis in Holyoke’s public schools. Each year, a classroom-sized group of students with learning disabilities drops out. These students are then more likely to be arrested and jailed on Holyoke’s streets. Although unintentional, we are...


Guest columnist John P DiBartolo Jr.: Don’t debate Main St. plan, diss detractors
01-17-2024 8:08 AM

By JOHN P. DIBARTOLO JR.

I have long resented and resembled the pejorative characterizations of liberals made by conservative news media pundits. I am a real-life Volvo-driving, oat milk latte-drinking, composting/recycling, vegan, atheist, feminist, Liz Warren-voting trial...


Guest columnist Dave King: Not heeding anti-militarist message of MLK
01-17-2024 8:07 AM

By DAVE KING

Here we are again, another Martin Luther King Jr. Day, when we all look forward to legions of politicians trotting out MLK’s “I have a dream” speech to remind us we should be striving together in harmony for a world where all peoples can enjoy our...


Columnist Razvan Sibii: Another 3 hypocrisies of the American immigration system
01-17-2024 8:06 AM

By RAZVAN SIBII

Last month, my column was an end-of-the-year top 5 list of hypocrisies that poison our current discussions about the migrant crisis at the southern border [bit.ly/3RLgE6s]. I think I got more emails about that column than about any other I’ve written...


Guest columnists Greg Reynolds and Jesse Porter-Henry: Educator pay and benefits should align with community values
01-15-2024 7:01 PM

By GREG REYNOLDS and JESSE PORTER-HENRY

Saying that we were moved barely begins to describe how we felt on Jan. 8 when student after student spoke on educators’ behalf at the Hampshire Regional School Committee meeting. Current students, recent grads now in college and those who are into...


Guest columnist Cynthia Loring MacBain: U.S. foreign policy not unlike incarcerated men
01-15-2024 1:01 PM

By CYNTHIA LORING MACBAIN

For 32 years, I was a volunteer with the Alternatives to Violence Project in New York State maximum security prisons: Sing Sing, Elmira, and the last years in Auburn Correctional Facility.A mantra among men incarcerated for violent crimes is “A man’s...


Guest columnist Rob Okun: Little League's mercy rule in a time of war
01-15-2024 12:27 PM

By ROB OKUN

Let’s start with some basic assumptions: 1) Israel is not Jewish — just as the U.S. is not Christian. 2) Palestine is not Muslim. 3) Hamas perpetrates heinous acts, puts civilian lives in peril, and regularly violates the “rules” of war. 4) Israeli...


Guest columnist Daniel Cantor Yalowitz: Building on King’s legacy with action
01-15-2024 6:01 AM

By DANIEL CANTOR YALOWITZ

“True peace is not merely the absence of tension; it is the presence of justice.” — Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Stride Toward Freedom (1958)The wars that rage around the world are not only to be found elsewhere, beyond our soil and nation. Yes,...

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