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Amherst’s Moriah Luetjen, Logan Alfandari each win 2 titles, Northampton girls dominate en route to team title at Western Mass. Division 1 Track & Field Championships (PHOTOS)
05-28-2024 10:47 AM

By CONNOR PIGNATELLO

AGAWAM — Moriah Luetjen’s best race is the 400 meters. Two years ago as a freshman, she won it at the MIAA Division 4 Outdoor Track & Field Championships and followed it up with a first-place finish in the Freshman 400 at New Balance Outdoor...

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Amherst Regional’s track project likely in council’s lap
05-28-2024 10:49 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Town Council is likely to determine the scope of renovations to the Amherst Regional High School track and its interior field after the Regional School Committee deferred the final decision on the project last week to Amherst’s elected...


Herman signs on as Amherst-Pelham Regional superintendent
05-28-2024 10:49 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A superintendent for the St. Croix, Virgin Islands Department of Education has reached terms of a contract and will be the next superintendent for the Amherst, Pelham and Amherst-Pelham regional schools beginning July 1, earning $176,500 in...


Amherst Planning Board member pens letter calling for town-UMass housing committee
05-28-2024 10:49 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Continued worries about single-family homes being turned into student rentals in Amherst is prompting a Planning Board member to draft a letter to University of Massachusetts Chancellor Javier Reyes appealing for creation of a committee,...


Rattling those musical bones: Folk/blues veteran Chris Smither releases his 20th album ahead of 80th birthday
05-28-2024 10:48 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

When Chris Smither found his live gigs shut down during the worst months of COVID-19, he figured it might at least be a good opportunity to write some new songs — something the veteran folk/blues singer and guitarist admits is not the easiest process...


Fill returns to Hadley Select Board as Parsons reelected; $2M firetruck approved
05-28-2024 10:47 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HADLEY — Voters are returning incumbent Amy Parsons and former member David J. Fill II to the Select Board, while approving a $2 million ladder truck for the Fire Department.At Tuesday’s town election, Parsons, who has been Select Board chairwoman for...


Banner time for Hadley veterans: Pennant portraits hung along town streets will honor 82 service members past and present
05-28-2024 10:47 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HADLEY — Active service members from Hadley, military veterans who continue to make their homes in town and others who have served the United States from World War I on will be among 82 people whose portraits will be displayed on banners around town...


Primo Restaurant & Pizzeria in South Deerfield under new ownership
05-28-2024 10:47 AM

By CHRIS LARABEE

SOUTH DEERFIELD — After more than a decade in the previous owner’s hands, the Rodas family is taking the reins at Primo Restaurant & Pizzeria with plans to continue the eatery’s legacy.The new owners officially took over the pizza, sub and pasta shop...


Jones Library trustees to ask state for 6 more months to find contractor for expansion project
05-28-2024 10:46 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Jones Library trustees are appealing to the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners to extend the deadline for awarding a general contractor bid for the $46.1 million renovation and expansion of the 43 Amity St. building.Trustees on...


Arts Briefs: The Paradise City Arts Festival returns to Northampton, the MIFA Victory Players perform in Holyoke, and more
05-28-2024 10:46 AM

Paradise by the fairground lightsNORTHAMPTON — One of the area’s largest artistic celebrations returns this weekend, as some 220 artists and craftspeople gather at the Three County Fairgrounds for the Paradise City Arts Festival.The biannual festival,...


Shaping Amherst responders’ role: CRESS chief emphasizes ‘community’
05-28-2024 10:44 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — One-on-one attention for a resident with hoarding issues was recently offered by members of the Community Responders for Equity, Safety and Service department to illustrate the focus they can bring for someone experiencing a crisis.“We can...


Hadley’s Hampshire Mall faces foreclosure
05-28-2024 10:43 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HADLEY — Hampshire Mall, one of the largest commercial properties along Route 9 since opening in 1978, is heading to a foreclosure auction next month.A legal advertisement in Wednesday’s Gazette from Shatz, Schwartz and Fentin P.C. attorneys of...


Graduating amid signs of protest: 6,800 UMass students receive diplomas at ceremony briefly interrupted by walk out
05-28-2024 10:41 AM

By Elise Linscott

AMHERST — Several dozen protesters marched out of the 154th UMass Amherst Undergraduate Commencement ceremony this weekend when Chancellor Javier Reyes took the podium, including a few faculty members and people in the stands carrying banners,...


‘A generational healing experience’: Exhibit documents the struggles of Cambodian families fleeing the Khmer Rouge who found refuge and a new community in Amherst
05-28-2024 10:39 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Not long after 20 years of war finally ended in Vietnam in 1975, another wave of horrendous violence erupted just to the west.The Khmer Rouge, the Communist party of Cambodia, seized control of the country and began a brutal “reeducation” campaign...


UMass faculty, librarians vote no confidence in chancellor over protest breakup
05-20-2024 8:30 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Nearly 500 members of the faculty and librarians are expressing no confidence in the leadership of University of Massachusetts Chancellor Javier Reyes stemming from the breakup of a pro-Palestinian encampment on May 7 that led to the arrests...


State OKs Valley Green Energy program for Amherst, Northampton, Pelham
05-20-2024 10:11 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — A program offering Northampton, Amherst and Pelham residents more electricity supplied by green sources should be ready to launch by this fall.Amherst officials announced on May 8 that the state Department of Public Utilities recently...


Three candidates for two Select Board seats make pitches in Hadley
05-20-2024 10:09 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

HADLEY — Protecting farmland, keeping Hadley affordable and family friendly, and promoting commercial development appear to be areas of agreement for the three candidates vying for two seats on the Select Board at next week’s town election.Fielding...


Amherst College faculty join students in urging divestment from military suppliers to Israel
05-20-2024 10:09 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — The faculty of Amherst College is joining the college’s Student Senate in asking trustees to divest from corporations supplying military equipment to Israel in its ongoing war in Gaza.The divestment appeal, made last week, came with support...


UMass graduation speaker Colson Whitehead pulls out over quashed campus protest
05-20-2024 10:09 AM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

AMHERST — Disturbed by the arrests of 132 protesters on the University of Massachusetts campus this week during a pro-Palestinian encampment, Colson Whitehead, the two-time Pulitzer Prize winning author scheduled to deliver the keynote address at the...


South County Senior Center opts not to renew church lease after rift over LGBTQ program
05-20-2024 10:09 AM

By CHRIS LARABEE

SOUTH DEERFIELD — The Senior Center Board of Oversight has opted to not renew the center’s lease to use the Holy Family Roman Catholic Church’s function hall after a disagreement over the Rainbow Elders program.With the current lease expiring May 31,...


Get Growing with Mickey Rathbun: Venture beyond your garden walls: Plant sales and noteworthy gardens to visit this season
05-20-2024 10:09 AM

By MICKEY RATHBUN

After long weeks of yearning for gardening weather, we’re suddenly inundated by spring. Endless outdoor chores beg for our attention — composting, mulching, edging, scrubbing birdbaths and, at least in my garden beds, pulling out multitudes of maple...

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