News

Big project wins OK at old Belchertown State School

02-23-2024 9:47 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

BELCHERTOWN — The town has signed off on the largest project yet in its long-running efforts to redevelop the former Belchertown State School — a 100-unit mixed-income residential complex that also includes converting an old administration building...


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Superintendent warns of 20 staff cuts in Amherst-Pelham regional schools

02-23-2024 9:56 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Even with Amherst officials signaling a commitment to increase the town’s financial obligation to the Amherst-Pelham Regional Schools, around 20 staff members, including classroom teachers and paraeducators, could be eliminated at the middle...


Amherst gets good budget news that could stave off cuts

02-23-2024 9:56 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Amherst’s public schools, municipal government and town libraries are in line to get spending boosts in next year’s budgets that go beyond initial projections, potentially staving off recently announced cuts that could be made to elementary...


The Lehrer Report: Feb. 23, 2024

02-23-2024 9:55 PM

Garden report: A friend told me crocuses are in bloom in her yard. Others have reported seeing shoots up in their yards. I checked my beds and there are daffodil and iris shoots that are visible.One month from Tuesday — Feb. 20 — the vernal equinox,...


Literary musing and gatherings: Amherst College host its ninth annual LitFest this weekend

02-23-2024 9:55 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Amherst College has sent many a successful writer into the world, or brought them in to teach: David Foster Wallace, Robert Frost, Richard Wilbur, Robert Stone, Lauren Groff, Chris Bohjalian, Charles Mann and many others.That legacy will be celebrated...


Amherst Historical Commission not ready to OK demos on South Pleasant without more info

02-23-2024 9:55 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Appeals for more documentation of a historic performance space in a downtown building, possibly used by an Amherst College fraternity in the 19th century, are being made before the three-story brick structure is razed.The rear ell at 45...


$1M in grants to boost local food system in Hampshire County

02-23-2024 9:55 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — Area organizations are welcoming grant awards that will boost the supply of fresh, local food available to those in need and provide support for local farmers.“We’re really thrilled to have been selected,” said Lev BenEzra, executive...


LifePath gets $125K grant to facilitate benefits enrollment

02-23-2024 9:53 PM

By CHRIS LARABEE

GREENFIELD — With a $125,000 grant from the National Council on Aging, LifePath is looking to help folks in Franklin and Hampshire counties, as well as the North Quabbin region, get past the complex forms and eligibility requirements for numerous...


Councilors have doubts over Amherst College ‘gateway’ sign on public green

02-23-2024 9:53 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A large gateway sign to greet visitors to the Amherst College campus coming from points west and north, better announcing the college’s presence at the southern edge of downtown, is again being proposed for installation by college officials...


Around Amherst: Town lays out climate change action on website

02-23-2024 9:53 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A town website focused on the municipal work related to addressing climate change and making Amherst more sustainable recently went live.“It’s pretty much a one-stop opportunity to access information on what has been done, what is being...


Amherst town officials leery of playground surfaces

02-23-2024 9:53 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — With the Conservation Commission and Board of Health registering objections to the proposed poured-in-place rubber surface of a playground at the town’s new elementary school, the design team is asking the Elementary School Building...


Treasure in the attic: Woman steps up to save long-lost mural of 1800s Jewish immigrant congregation

02-23-2024 9:47 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND

Forgotten and gathering dust in the attic of a North Adams apartment building for more than a century, a mural that’s a part of eastern European Jewish immigrant history may soon see the light of day again.If it does, it will be thanks largely to the...


Amherst seeks bids to remove old VFW building

02-23-2024 9:46 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A contractor to demolish the former VFW building at 457 Main St. is being sought by the town, the next step in redeveloping the site for supportive affordable housing and a permanent homeless shelter.The town recently posted a bid soliciting...


Adding up fire losses at Red Fire Farm: $1M in damages includes barn full of supplies and memories

02-23-2024 9:43 PM

By EMILEE KLEIN

GRANBY — Days after a large fire engulfed Red Fire Farm’s barn and farm store on Carver Street on Saturday afternoon, farm staff slowly recounted the equipment and inventory lost in the fire, as well as the memories attached to them.The fire caused an...


From lab to the world: UMass researchers land $5.5M grant to help translate work into products

02-23-2024 9:43 PM

By XINJI YANG

AMHERST — Researchers at the University of Massachusetts will soon get help translating their work conducted in campus laboratories into solutions to real-world problems related to human health and well-being.That’s the broad focus of a new $5.5...


Amherst Town Council asked to support cease-fire in Gaza

02-15-2024 8:29 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — The Town Council could vote as early as Feb. 26 on adopting a “Resolution for a Cease-fire in Gaza,” a measure that not only calls for a cease-fire, but the release of hostages and detainees on both sides, ensuring humanitarian aid enters...


Around Amherst: Event welcomes Year of the Dragon

02-15-2024 8:29 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A year after 300 people came out to celebrate the Lunar New Year at Spring Festival with music, dance and food, a similar event to commemorate 2024 — the Year of the Dragon — takes place Saturday.The get-together, running from 10:30 a.m. to...


The Lehrer Report: Feb. 16, 2024

02-15-2024 8:29 PM

Reminder: Monday, Feb. 19 is a holiday, Presidents’ Day. Town offices, public libraries and schools will be closed. It’s also a public school vacation week.***Condolences to the family and friends of Ed Wilfert of Amherst.The Historical Society...


Hadley Select Board OKs one-day liquor licenses for Young Men’s Club events

02-15-2024 8:29 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HADLEY — Annual events that draw in excess of 1,000 spectators, like the Country in the Country concert and spring and fall festivals for area college students, will continue to be held at the Young Men’s Club, pending approval of one-day liquor...


Five selected from limited pool to interview for Amherst police chief

02-15-2024 8:26 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Even with continued concerns over having just a small pool of applicants to be Amherst’s next police chief, a search committee is forging ahead with interviews.Five candidates, culled from 11 who submitted letters of interest in the job,...



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