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New England News

A pale red headed man speaks into two mics
Josh Landes / WAMC

Democratic Massachusetts Congressman Joe Kennedy is taking his U.S. Senate campaign to Western Massachusetts today.

Wedding rings
By Jeff Belmonte from Cuiabá, Brazil (Flickr) via Wikimedia Commons

For many couples during the pandemic, “I do” has become “let’s wait.” Businesses associated with Vermont’s wedding industry have taken a substantial loss in bookings and finances due to the coronavirus. Representative Peter Welch held an e-meeting with dozens of professionals to discuss the challenges they face and update them on the Congressional response.

Airbnb says that its Berkshire County hosts saw rental incomes almost double for the 4th of July weekend compared to 2019.

Phil Scott
Pat Bradley / WAMC

Vermont officials have announced the guidelines that colleges and universities must follow this fall to allow students back on campus for in-person classroom learning.

Brad Gordon is the Executive Director and staff attorney for the Berkshire County Regional Housing Authority. In 2019, he described the region’s housing situation as in crisis. Now, with the COVID-19 pandemic wreaking havoc on the economy, Gordon says the situation could only intensity. He spoke with WAMC.

The seal of the the city of North Adams, Massachusetts
North Adams

Berkshire County’s second city – North Adams – will see one of its biggest draws, sprawling contemporary art museum MASS MoCA, reopen on Saturday. The museum has been shuttered since March because of the pandemic, which is impacting many aspects of life in northern Berkshire County. WAMC spoke with Mayor Tom Bernard about how the city is preparing, as well as how North Adams is weathering the pandemic and planning its 2021 operating budget.

Vermont has developed mandatory guidance and health protocols for colleges and universities to follow as they reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Burlington School District Superintendent Tom Flanagan
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The new superintendent of the Burlington, Vermont School District laid out his “100 Day Entry Plan” this morning. It includes his initial plan for the district and pandemic reopening for this fall.

The Pittsfield Fire Department Logo
City of Pittsfield

A fire in Pittsfield, Massachusetts left a woman dead Monday night.

The Vermont Department of Labor says it’s taking steps to monitor unemployment insurance fraud activity and is warning residents to be vigilant about such threats.

Warden Matt Thiel with an unidentified participant of a past "Fish With a Warden"
Vermont Fish and Wildlife

The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is offering anglers a chance to fish with a game warden in order to get fishing tips or questions answered about the sport.

A black square that reads "Nothing surprises." sits on the floor in a hardware store
Tessa Kelly / The Mastheads

A Berkshire County art project that combines writing, architecture, and public spaces has a new season underway this month.

The Massachusetts Joint Committee on Public Health's endorsement of the end of life options bill
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts

A bill that would give the terminally ill the option of ending their own lives medically is making its way through the Massachusetts legislature.


Remote learning summer school starts Monday  in the largest school district in western Massachusetts.

The Pittsfield Community Television logo
Pittsfield Community Television

A new documentary by Pittsfield Community Television traces the Massachusetts city’s 4th of July parade back to the turn of the 19th century.


Drive-in theaters and other outdoor movie screenings are making a comeback during the pandemic.

Burlington street sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger says four city bars have been issued warnings for not following rules intended to limit the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.

Burlington City Hall
WAMC Photo

Burlington, Vermont city councilors approved the 2021 budget Tuesday night with less than two hours to spare before the new fiscal year.

A black man in a suit sits for a portrait
George Kendall Warren / National Archives and Records Administration

Readings of Frederick Douglass’s “The Meaning Of The Fourth Of July For The Negro” are planned in the Berkshires this weekend.

An aerial photo of a building complex set on a wooded hillside
Douglas Mason / MASS MoCA

Three Berkshire County museums plan to reopen next weekend.

Jacob's Pillow - All Styles Dance Battle 2018
Christopher Duggan / Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival

Becket, Massachusetts dance center Jacob’s Pillow has announced the full schedule for its virtual summer festival.

The Berkshire County Sheriff's Office logo, a gold star with the office's name on it and the state seal in the middle
Berkshire County Sheriff's Office

The longest-serving sheriff in Berkshire County history died last week, leaving a complicated legacy.

Tasheena Davis in front of American flag in Springfield City Council chambers


    The City Clerk of Springfield, Massachusetts issued a public apology Wednesday after uttering an expletive during a livestreamed remote City Council meeting. 


    A lot of small businesses are facing new expenses to safeguard employees and customers during the coronavirus pandemic.

Shakespeare & Company

Lenox, Massachusetts theater group Shakespeare & Company has announced furloughs for most of its staff.

Two white women sit at a wooden table in a book-lined room.
Josh Landes / WAMC

In June, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court agreed with Berkshire County District Attorney Andrea Harrington that judges can extend pre-trial holdings on defendants who are deemed to pose a risk to their communities. The issue clarifies one of the complications of the COVID-19 pandemic, with all jury trials suspended until at least September. WAMC spoke to Harrington about why she advocated for the expanded ability for pre-trial holdings.

The new fiscal year for Massachusetts municipalities started today, and Springfield has a new budget – minus some money for its police department. 

A white woman smiles
Massachusetts Cultural Council

Anita Walker has stepped down after 13 years as the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Cultural Council. The state agency doles out state and federal funding to non-profit cultural organizations, schools, communities, and individuals artists throughout the commonwealth. Walker spoke with WAMC about her career, from taking up the role in 2007 to how cultural work has changed over her tenure.

Brian Peete
City of Montpelier

Vermont is getting what's believed to be its first Black police chief at a time of protests in Vermont and nationwide over racial injustice and police brutality.

Vermont Statehouse
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Vermont Legislature adjourned late last Friday night until August. This week, the House Speaker and finance committee chairs discussed how federal COVID-19 recovery funds have been appropriated and what work remains.