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Friday, July 03, 2015
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Links to stories concerning our region in other media:

The Boston Globe
Michael Conforti’s success directing the Clark Art Institute

The Clark’s director looks back on his tenure at the world-renown museum as he prepares to retire at the end of the summer.

The New York Times
Wilco Tinkers and Experiments at a Festival It’s Happy to Share

MASS MoCA hosted its largest Solid Sound Festival to date, but the warm spirit stayed the same.

The Boston Globe
Authors Jim and Karen Shepard share a study in their Williamstown home.

The Globe’s “New England Writers at Work” makes a trip to the light and book-filled study of the Berkshires couple.

The New York Times
‘River Crossings,’ a Contemporary Art Exhibition at 2 Historic Sites of the Hudson River School

A trip to the Thomas Cole and Olana Historic Sites’ new dual exhibit inspires.

The New York Times
A Review of Falls Village Inn Restaurant in Connecticut

Christopher Brooks finds things to love in both the Inn’s taproom and in its more formal dining room.

The New York Times
The Wassaic Project: A Festival, a ‘Beautiful’ Flood and Now Art

The small town of Wassaic, NY is home to a magical artists’ community.

The New York Times
Hotel Review: White Hart Inn in the Berkshires

Salisbury’s beloved inn gets high marks all around, with a special nod to its restaurant, the Tap Room.

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Paley's Market



Local Stores Roll Out Special Sales And Festive Shopping Events

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Tis the season for barbecuing with friends and relatives, building a backyard bonfire, and settling in to watch the fireworks, but it’s also one of the best times of the year to visit our region’s boutiques, many of which have scheduled special events, marked down their merchandise and created summertime cocktails for those of us browsing this weekend and next. What you’ll find “in store”: Boxwood Linen relaunches in its new, expanded storefront in Chatham; New Preston holds its beloved Summer Stroll; the Michael Wainwright outlet in Great Barrington fires up the kiln; Dory and Ginger opens on North Street in Pittsfield; LaGrangeville’s Monastery Vinegar Festival makes its return and a lot more.

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Four Brothers Drive-In Changes The Drive-In Experience

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The Four Brothers Drive-In in Amenia, NY has become a regional secret at the bottom of the Berkshires. The year-old drive-in has redefined what an outdoor auto theater can be with its emphasis on good food, community events and a style that mixes vintage and modern. Created by offspring of the area’s popular Four Brothers pizza restaurants, the attraction offers live music, a farmers market and kids’ activities by day and first-run movies by night. And it expects viewers to come hungry, because the complete Four Brothers menu is available (and served by car hop). RI’s Jamie Larson introduces us to the next generation of drive-ins courtesy of the next generation of “Brothers.”

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Now that strawberries are everywhere, it’s finally time to sweeten up that rhubarb. Madeline Delosh, owner of Mado Patisserie in Chatham, gives us step-by-step instructions on how to create a tart from scratch. Add a scoop of sorbet or ice cream on the side, and this just might be the perfect dessert for your July 4th gathering.

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An intimate gathering of Shaker Museum | Mount Lebanon trustees, supporters and staff members attended an exclusive reception for the new exhibition Side By Side: Shaker and Modern Design, while the Berkshire Museum turned guests into sommeliers with the large selection of hard-to-find wines up for grabs at its biannual wine gala and auction.

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Sure, you can look up Rural Intelligence on your phone or iPad (and we hope you do), but if you're searching for something specific — a restaurant, lodging, shopping — we offer the one-and-only mobile travel guide for the region. It's chock full of lists, mapped directions, sharing functions and links to our curated calendars. And it's free.

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Our fitness correspondent, Paula Boyajian, set out to take a Zumba class at Lenox Fit, but as luck would have it, a substitute teacher had to step in. What she taught was a combination of “dancey” aerobics styles from belly dancing (jangly scarves provided) to line dancing. It was a sweaty workout that was also loads of fun.

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There’s no such thing as having too many books. You just need a dedicated room in your house so you can treat them well. The properties this week offer magnificent home libraries — even a two-story option — with room enough for the perfect desk and reading chair. The next chapter of your life may be about to begin.

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It's play time in the RI region, as Williamstown Theatre Festival kicks off with two star-studded plays, The Unbuilt City opens at Powerhouse at Vassar, Deathtrap begins at Berkshire Theatre Group, The Comedy of Errors at Shakespeare & Co., Hairspray at Mac-Haydn, and a lot more debuts throughout the region.

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Instant Intelligence

For even more information about upcoming events, check out our Dining, Music & Dance, Visual Arts, Shopping, Books, Theater, Movies, Kids, and Save the Date sections. Please submit your own event to

Now—July 5, Great Barrington Mahaiwe Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca perform their riveting dance drama Antigona, a work that merges live music, theatrical spectacle and dance. 7:30 p.m.

July 3, Pittsfield & Stockbridge Free Fun Fridays Free admission at Berkshire Museum and Naumkeag, which will feature a performance by BerkCirque, live music, lawn games, snacks and more.

July 3, Great Barrington Michael Wainwright Outlet Store All Fired Up Again: free family event featuring 20-50% off store-wide, pieces to decorate and have fired in the kiln, pizza, lemonade, SOCO ice cream, and live music from the Blue Ribbon Trio. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

July 3, Lenox The Mount The Music After Hours series kicks off with “Struttin’ With Some Barbecue,” a community picnic and performance by Wanda Houston. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. Presented in partnership with the Lift Ev’ry Voice Festival. 5-8 p.m.

July 3 & 5, Chatham PS21 Hudson Air Radio Theatre celebrates the Fourth with classic and contemporary radio theater performed live on stage. The audience watches the magic sound effects created with ordinary objects.

July 3, North Adams MASS MoCA presents a screening of Top Gun at the Harriman-West Airport. 8:30 p.m.

July 3, Lenox Tanglewood Opening night of the Boston Symphony Orchestra celebrates our country’s heritage with an all-American program of music by John Harbison, George Gershwin, Aaron Copland and Duke Ellington. Koussevitzky Music Shed, 8:30 p.m.

July 4, New Lebanon Behold! New Lebanon The living history museum opens with behind-the-scenes looks at a dog trainer, an auctioneer, a sausage maker and an entire race track. See website for full schedule.

July 4, Germantown Clermont An Old Fashioned Independence Day, featuring demonstrations, tea parties, kids’ games, Revolutionary War re-enactors, hayrides, hot food, live oldies music and a great view of the fireworks. 2-10 p.m.

July 4, Lenox Shakespeare & Company À la carte pricing for BBQ burgers, dogs, corn on the cob, beer, wine & more. 1:30-5 p.m. Company actors, dignitaries & special guests come together for a public reading of the Declaration of Independence at 3 p.m.

July 4, New Preston Summer Stroll Shop while you enjoy live music and specialty treats and cocktails like white sangria, fresh local lemonade, and pink champagne. Raffle ticket proceeds benefit the Steep Rock Association, which protects three local nature preserves. 2-5 p.m.

July 4, Litchfield Litchfield Historical Society Annual pet parade and turn-of-the-century festival, featuring sack races, tug-of-war contests, seed spitting contests and an ice cream social. 2:15-4:30 p.m.

July 5, Lenox Tanglewood Keith Lockhart conducts the Boston Pops with special guest Bernadette Peters. Koussevitzky Music Shed, 2:30 p.m.

July 5, Hudson Basilica Hudson CATCH takes the Hudson, a Brooklyn-based, multi-disciplinary, rough-and-ready series of performance events uses community, love and refreshments to deliver an array of the finest artists who call the Hudson Valley home. 6 p.m.

July 9, Stockbridge Norman Rockwell Museum In conjunction with her current exhibition at the Museum, New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast will discuss her prolific career, and her acclaimed graphic memoir, Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? 5:30 p.m.

July 9—12, Great Barrington Mahaiwe Paul Taylor Dance Company returns to their Berkshires home with five shows, where they will be performing different works at each viewing.

July 9—12, Hudson Olana Plein Air Paint Out and Festival, with a live auction of the wet canvases created by 30 artists on Saturday from 4-6 p.m. On Sunday, artists will hold a tent sale from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Proceeds support education programs at Olana and the CCCA.

July 10, Great Barrington Mass Live Arts Benefit Party See YOUARENOWHERE at 8 p.m., followed by a live performance by Doll Parts (a Dolly Parton cover band), drinks and a BBQ. Outside on the Simon’s Rock campus.

July 10, Hudson Club Helsinki Texas-raised Mexican-American Alejandro Escovedo, a one-time punk-rocker mostly playing original alt-country music since before there was such a term, performs with his band, The Sensitive Boys. 9 p.m.

July 10 & 11, Great Barrington McTeigue & McClelland Special showing of rare antique and colored diamonds on display for two days only. Colored diamonds are the most rare-of-rare gemstones and have long been sought by connoisseurs and collectors. 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

July 10—12, Great Barrington Ski Butternut MassBliss Arts and Awareness Festival, an all-ages arts and awareness camping experience featuring live performances and immersive workshops in music, theater, yoga, meditation and fitness.

July 10—12, Poughkeepsie Hudson Valley Hot-Air Balloon Festival Witness 100 balloon launches throughout the weekend, utilizing a record 25 balloons, as well as “moon-glows” and children’s activities.

July 11, Stockbridge The Lenox Garden Club Hidden Treasures of the Berkshires 2015: self-guided tour of six gardens and historic properties in Stockbridge. Rain or shine. 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

July 11, Washington Washington Green Fair Giant tag sale, silent and live auctions, book, plant, food and boutique booths and a Yankee bakery. Plus face painting and horse-drawn wagon rides for kids. Proceeds benefit the historic Washington Green Meeting House. 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.

July 11, Hudson Basilica Hudson Off The Page: publisher Random House presents a celebration of reading, with authors Ruth Reichl and Gretchen Rubin, workshops, a wine tasting, gift bags and more. 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.

July 11, Chatham Summerfest Food, sales and entertainment including artisan booths, food vendors & not-profits sharing their message. Free performances and events on the Arts Spotlight Stage will include dance, music, theater & more. 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

July 11, Lakeville Chore Service Garden Party A cocktail party to celebrate the Chore Service’s 23rd year of helping elderly and disabled residents of NW CT stay safely and affordably at home. Hawk Hill Farm (36 Long Pond Road), 5-7:30 p.m.

July 11, Rhinebeck Wilderstein Summer Celebration A “Roosevelt Era” evening of cocktails and picnic fare, live music, lawn games, house tours, outdoor sculpture and a huge silent auction. 5-8 p.m.

July 11, Ghent Declaration of Interdependence Hawthorne Valley Farm celebrates 43 years of dedication to social and cultural renewal with food and drink from local and regional purveyors, guest speakers and live music. 6 p.m.

July 11, Ghent Art Omi Weekend: Dinner & Dancing Under the Stars Sneak preview tours of selected artists’ studios, and dinner, drinks and dancing to SAMBALAND with artists-in-residence and the upstate arts community. 7-midnight.

July 11, North Adams MASS MoCA Soulful singer and guitarist Toshi Reagon is joined by special guests in “Love Sessions: Michael Jackson vs. Prince,” a love-themed concert that takes a dive into the songbooks of the two American pop icons. 8 p.m.

July 11, Chatham PS21 Dom Flemons, a founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops and a multi-instrumentalist and singer, performs ragtime, Piedmont blues, spirituals, southern folk, ballads and more with showmanship and humor. 8 p.m.

July 11 & 12, LaGrangeville Monastery Vinegar Festival Sample and buy organic-artisanal vinegars produced at the monastery, along with tapenade, pesto, sauces, herbs, tonics & more, as well as plants, books, food, crafts & art. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Our Lady of the Resurrection Monastery.

July 12, Sheffield Berkshire Grown Brunch Benefit Meet award-winning food writer and best-selling author Ruth Reichl, enjoy brunch and hear a talk by the author. In the Cherneff’s barn, 11 a.m.

July 13, Williamstown Paradise Lew The Daily Show’s king of rant, Lewis Black, returns to the Williamstown Theatre Festival for a one-night-only benefit performance of his signature dyspeptic brand of stand-up. 7:30 p.m.

July 13, Great Barrington Mahaiwe The band Pink Martini draws on diverse influences to weave a seamless musical fabric that defies immediate classification, but has been lauded by critics for its international flavor and ability to entertain. 8 p.m.

July 14, Rhinebeck Oblong Books & Music Go Set a Watchman Cocktail Party: purchase your copy of Harper Lee’s new book as soon as it is released and enjoy a “Go Get a Scotch, Man” cocktail created by Tequila Mockingbird author Tim Federle. 4-6 p.m.

July 15, Richmond Stars in the Orchard A cocktail party to benefit WAM Theatre, with sunset hayrides, moonlit serenades, clowns, apple cider donuts, tunes from a rambling band, campfire, and hors d’oeuvres and wine by the host—Hilltop Orchards. 6:30 p.m.

July 15, Pittsfield Berkshire Museum Screening of Dog Down followed by Q&A with Berkshire native and Associate Producer Candide Jones. The documentary tells the story of prisoners and unadoptable dogs transforming each other. 7 p.m.

July 16, Washington Gunn Memorial Library Local filmmaker Jonathan Bee will host a screening of his recently released documentary, The Paper Trail, which features Litchfield County authors Susan Orlean, Simon Winchester, Courtney Maum and others. 6:30 p.m.

July 16—19, Amherst Yidstock 2015 The Yiddish Book Center presents its fourth festival of new Yiddish music, with performances by the Grammy Award-winning Klezmatics, Klezperanto, Socalled and more, plus a full schedule of talks and workshops.

July 17—19, Great Barrington GB Fairgrounds The Zoppè Family Circus features acrobatic feats, horses, a ballerina, canine capers, clowning and audience participation. Also try your hand at games, the dunk-tank and more in this benefit for CATA and the Fairgrounds.

July 18, Pittsfield Back To Our Roots A fun-filled gala to celebrate Hancock Shaker Village’s 55th anniversary. The evening will include an elegant, locally sourced dinner by Fire-Roasted Catering, live and silent auctions, live music and dancing. 5 p.m.

July 18, Copake Falls Summer Sparkling Soiree Enjoy a concert by singer and Broadway composer Jim Wann and friends, fine wines and bites of Columbia County’s summer bounty, and unique silent auction items. Church of St. John in the Wilderness, 6 p.m.

July 18, Lenox An Evening in the Woods Summer party and barn dance to support Berkshire Sanctuaries’ education programs. Enjoy food, drink, live music, a bonfire and more. Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, 6-9:30 p.m.

July 18, Copake FarmOn Foundation Hootenanny! This benefit celebration will include a cocktail hour, farm-fresh dinner with host Chef Jonathan Wright of NYC’s Rainbow Room, live and silent auctions, live music and dancing. Empire Farm. 6 p.m.

July 18, New Lebanon Tannery Pond Concerts String quartet Brooklyn Rider will perform an eclectic repertoire of pieces by Haydn, Schubert, Bill Frisell, Vivjay Iyer and Glenn Kotche. 8 p.m.

July 19, North Adams Independent Art Projects Ferrin Contemporary presents a panel discussion about collecting ceramics with Antiques Roadshow’s Suzanne Perrault, David Rago and Daniel Farrell. 3 p.m. A dinner catered by Gramercy Bistro will follow at 6:30 p.m.

For even more information about upcoming events, check out our:
Dining Intelligence (Listings of Food and Drink Events & Restaurant Features)
Music & Dance Listings
Visual Arts Listings
Local Shopping Listings
Books Listings
Theater Listings
Local Movies Listings
Kids Calendar Listings
Save the Date Listings
Please submit your own event to