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Friday, September 04, 2015
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Links to stories concerning our region in other media:

The Boston Globe
Ella Baff, looking back on a legacy at Jacob’s Pillow

The executive and artistic director looks back at her 17 years at the helm of the Becket, Mass. dance festival.

Architectural Digest
A Stylish New Hotel Opens in the Berkshires

The new Hotel on North in Pittsfield, Mass. mixes the local with the historical.

The Wall Street Journal
‘Van Gogh and Nature’ Review: A Stunning Connection

The show at Clark Art is “an extraordinary, surprisingly original and deftly handled exhibit.”

The New York Times
Karen Allen at Home in the Berkshires

The actress-turned-director invites RI’s co-founder, Dan Shaw, into her Monterey, Mass. home.

The Boston Globe
Tanglewood: The ultimate picnic-in-the-park destination

The Tanglewood Picnic by Berkshire County resident Gina Hyams covers a beloved local tradition.

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.

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Rural Intelligence

Jacobs Pillow

Only In My Dreams Events


Review: Gaskins, Doing Everything — Big And Little — Right

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Locals and travelers alike are flocking to a new restaurant in the center of sleepy Germantown, New York. Gaskins is pulling in the crowds with its well-crafted yet approachable food, amazing cocktails and a beautiful atmosphere, all housed in a restored 125-year-old building. Run by a couple with a decade of experience in top NYC restaurants, Gaskins is thriving in a unique location, proving they can draw from near and far. RI’s Jamie Larson tried out the new hot spot and lets us in on what all the buzz is about.

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Getting Deals Won't Be Hard Work At This Labor Day Sale

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You’ve already seen the luxury quilts, blankets, pillows, rugs and other items made and imported by the Claverack, New York-based company Traditions, only you probably didn’t realize it. Founded by antiques dealer Pamela Kline in 1972 and now run by her daughter-in-law Shari, the company’s bedding is featured in Neiman-Marcus, Orvis and Horchow Collection catalogs, as well as at Classic County in East Chatham and at all the Hammertown stores. The company’s Claverack outlet will be open for a special Labor Day sale this Friday and Saturday, September 4th and 5th, where you’ll find deeply discounted one-offs you’ll want to rush right home and tuck yourself into.

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School started this week for Alana Chernila’s kids, which signals it's time for her to change her repertoire to a more fall-like menu (even if the main ingredient is called summer squash). Borrowing the base recipe for a summer squash soup from Alice Waters, Alana shifts the spices and thickness as her mood and ingredients dictate. You’re invited to do the same.

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A garden party beer and wine tasting on the lawn at Berkshire Medical Center’s Cancer Center raised funds for integrative services such as yoga, Reiki, massage therapy, acupuncture and others. Later on in the evening, Jacob’s Pillow Dance bid farewell to Ella Baff, who has been the festival’s inspired leader for the last 17 years, during a finale performance, dessert buffet and dance party.

[Read More]

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Brian Cruey, our garden expert, calls hydrangeas the superstars of late summer, and we would have to agree. Their dazzling shapes and their ability to shift color through the season make them a joy to behold. However, all hydrangeas are not created equal, Brian says, offering a primer on the many cultivars. Now you can identify the type in your garden or find one to add to your landscape.

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Staircases can be grand and architectural wonders, but an elevator is more practical. The homes we feature this week come equipped with a lift, which is helpful whether you can use it now, are thinking of future needs, or are looking for a way to keep the grandkids occupied. The fact is, as you would think, any property with an elevator is a property worth viewing.

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The 8th annual Art Studio Views invites you to pick up a map online and take a ride to explore artists’ studios along Route 9 and the 9G corridor in Dutchess and Columbia counties this weekend. And consider attending some of the many opening receptions at galleries throughout the RI region, including those in Hudson, Pittsfield and Lakeville.

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If you’ve ever seen a performance at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, deep in woods of Becket, Mass., then you’ve likely witnessed Ella Baff welcoming you to the show and introducing the artists. As she exits the stage after 17 years as the organization’s executive and artistic director and heads to the Mellon Foundation in NYC, we conduct a short exit interview.

[Read More]

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—September 7, Chatham The Columbia County Fair is fun for the whole family, with nightly live entertainment, rides and games, agricultural activities, a petting zoo, demolition derbies, the Painted Pony Rodeo and a host of vendors. See website for full schedule.

September 4, Lenox Tanglewood Showered with awards and recognition for his live and recorded musical performances, Harry Connick, Jr. exemplifies excellence in every aspect of the entertainment world. Koussevitzky Music Shed, 7 p.m.

September 4 & 5, Millerton Artisan Fair Showcase of 20+ artisans & vendors, including Under Mountain Weavers, Seed Bead Bliss, John Goudreault Fine Furniture, Battle Hill Forge & others. Donations benefit NECC. The lawn of No. 9 Restaurant, Fri. 4-10 p.m. & Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

September 4—7, Spencertown Festival of Books Spencertown Academy Arts Center’s annual literary event includes a giant used book sale; discussions & signings with nationally known authors; a kids’ program & an early buying cocktail party Friday from 6-8 p.m.

September 5, New Lebanon Behold! New Lebanon The living history museum offers a tour of New Leaf Farm and an herb walk at the Abode gardens, plus go behind the scenes at Lebanon Valley Speedway and learn the secrets of an auctioneer. See website for full schedule.

September 5, North Adams MASS MoCA Singer and producer JD Samson, member of the legendary electro-feminist-punk project Le Tigre, performs with a live band and also spins a DJ set. 8 p.m.

September 5, Lenox Tanglewood Kristin Chenoweth’s career effortlessly spans film, TV, voiceover and stage. The Emmy and Tony Award-winning actress and singer joins conductor Thomas Wilkins and the Boston Pops for evening in the Koussevitzky Music Shed. 8:30 p.m.

September 5, Hudson Club Helsinki The Boston-based Lake Street Dive boasts four jazz- and classical-trained musicians who formed an indie-pop band featuring a trumpet-wielding guitarist, a bassist, a drummer and a female vocalist. 9 p.m.

September 5 & 6, Dutchess & Columbia Counties Art Studio Views Free, self-guided tour of 31 open studios along the Route 9 & 9G corridor. 11 a.m.—5 p.m.

September 5—7, Goshen Goshen Fair Livestock shows and competitions, a petting zoo and children’s shows, truck & tractor pulls, live music, rides, contests, food and fun for the whole family. See website for full schedule.

September 6, Catskill Columbia-Greene Garden Party The annual fundraising event to benefit individuals affected by HIV/AIDS in Northeastern NY will feature gourmet samplings, live entertainment and a fabulous array of silent auction items. Abeel House, 3-6 p.m.

September 6, Hudson Club Helsinki Back by popular demand, cabaret favorite Charles Busch performs “That Girl/That Boy,” an evening of songs and stories. 8 p.m.

September 8, Hudson Basilica Hudson In a precursor to Basilica Soundscape on Sept. 11–13, Godspeed You! Black Emperor will perform a special warm-up show on the heels of their new album Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress. 8 p.m.

September 10, Washington Outstanding in the Field Dinner Waldingfield Farm hosts with guest chef Jason Sobocinski from Caseus Fromagerie & Bistro in New Haven. 3 p.m.

September 10, Dalton Celebrate the Berkshires 1Berkshire honors Hotel on North for “Putting the Berkshires on the Map” and presents the Berkshire Trendsetter Awards. The Stationery Factory, 6 p.m.

September 11, Norfolk Infinity Hall Ty Herndon is a bona fide Country Music star, with 17 chart-topping hits, a couple of gold albums and a host of awards under his belt. 8 p.m.

September 11—13, Hudson Basilica Hudson Basilica Soundscape: a curated festival of music, visual art & literature featuring live performances from Perfume Genius, Actress, HEALTH, Wolf Eyes & others, and a Farm + Flea preview on Sunday.

September 12, New Lebanon Behold! New Lebanon The living history museum offers a tour of historic Lebanon Springs, plus learn to prepare an Indian meal, 200 years of local recipes and the language of birds, and explore the biodiversity of a bog. See website for full schedule.

September 12, Hillsdale Hillsdale ArtsWalk Stroll, eat, shop and enjoy live music as you take in the work of more than 40 local artists working in everything from oil paint to garden sculpture and handmade jewelry. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

September 12, New Preston Hopkins Vineyard Harmony in the Hills wine and music festival, featuring a lineup of talented musicians, wine tasting and craft vendors, as well as a BBQ menu by The Hopkins Inn. 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

September 12, Germantown Clermont Historic Site Akiko Busch, author of The Incidental Steward, Reflections on Citizen Science, will give a talk on how people can learn from the changing natural world around them. 3 p.m.

September 12, Sharon Audubon Sharon Benefit Garden Party The event will feature music by Pulitzer Prize- and Grammy-winning composer John Luther Adams. Inspired by nature, “Inuksuit” was specially written to be played and heard outdoors. A reception follows. 4 p.m.

September 12, Pittsfield The Bali-Hai Bash Come to Arrowhead for a luau with great food, hula dancers, a silent auction and music by Chris and Woody. Proceeds support the programs of the Berkshire Historical Society at Arrowhead. 4—9 p.m.

September 12, Claverack Library Benefit Cocktails set against sunset views, dinner by Simons Catering served pond-side and live performances by Nellie Rustick and Jerry Cordato, will perform works from the Great American Songbook and other classics. Laurie Family Farm, 5 p.m.

September 12, New Lebanon Side By Side Gala A benefit dinner celebrating Shaker Museum | Mount Lebanon’s exhibit Side by Side: Shaker and Modern Design. 6 p.m.

September 12, Williamstown Clark Art Dinner and the Show: culinary historian and author Alexandra Leaf celebrates the food culture of Van Gogh’s France. Following a presentation, enjoy private access to Van Gogh and Nature and a three-course French country dinner. 6:30 p.m.

September 12, Rhinebeck Oblong Books Presentation, Q&A and book signing with Bill Clegg, author of the bestselling memoir Portrait of an Addict as a Young Man and recent Man Booker Prize nominee Did You Ever Have a Family. 7 p.m.

September 12 & 13, Washington Hollister House Garden Garden Study Weekend, featuring a symposium with Rick Darke, Sheila Brady and Bill Noble, a rare and unusual plant sale and an early buying cocktail party in the garden. See website for details.

September 12 & 13, Stockbridge Open Studio Still life artist Helga Orthofer welcomes you into her studio to view and purchase scores of works from sketches to oil paintings. 17 East Street. 12-5 p.m.

September 13, Hyde Park Vanderbilt Garden Tea In the spirit of the Downton Abbey era, the fundraising event will feature a selection of Harney & Sons teas, finger sandwiches and treats, as well as live music and guest speaker Margie Coffin Brown. 2-4 p.m.

September 13, Great Barrington Stanton Brothers Pig Roast A benefit for Stanton Home, the evening will include pork and poultry with all the fixins, a silent auction and live music by The Lucky Five. 4-7 p.m.

September 17, Lenox The Mount As part of her Touchstones series, journalist Kate Bolick will discuss contemporary race relations and the enduring influence of author James Baldwin with Darryl Pinckney, editor of James Baldwin: Later Novels. 7:30 p.m.

September 18—20, North Adams MASS MoCA FreshGrass Bluegrass Festival: this year’s lineup includes Dwight Yoakam, Punch Brothers, The Del McCoury Band, Leftover Salmon and many, many others.

September 20, Great Barrington Mahaiwe Brian Selznick will give a multi-media presentation, answer questions & sign books, including his newest illustrated novel, The Marvels. His other books include the award-winning The Invention of Hugo Cabret. 3 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