About Town

As a mime, she finds a new voice to use in her church work

Sunday, April 19, 2015

NORTHFIELD — As a girl growing up in Pottstown, Pa., Christine Fontaine was “an extraordinarily quiet kid” whose father’s stories, about the sea, about Greek mythology, about how the constellations got their names, helped brighten a childhood darkened by polio. “He loved to tell stories,” recalls Fontaine in the backyard of her Millers Falls Road home, gesturing with her hands … 0

Greenfield house earns builder energy award

Sunday, March 1, 2015

GREENFIELD — It all added up for this former math teacher, given the net sum of skyrocketing energy costs. So he built a net-zero energy saltbox. And it scored big. From the outside, the only thing saying the natural-finish house at 10 Charles St. is out of the ordinary are the tree-beams at … 0

Peace-maker: We must look below the surface

Sunday, January 11, 2015

DEERFIELD — When he was a 15-year-old high school student growing up in Japan, Tatsushi Arai met some of the survivors of the Hiroshima bombing and listened to their stories of living with radiation sickness in the years after the August 1945 attack. Arai was touched, he said, “not only by the tragic … 0

Cloud lifts students’ computer work

Sunday, January 19, 2014

SOUTH DEERFIELD — At Frontier Regional School, Gabe Chapley, 17, of Deerfield is creating a production about modern technology using animation software. And David Esch, 14, of Deerfield is making a game using a computer coding program. The students are part of the multimedia courses taught by instructional … 0

About Town: Wrapped up in the Bridge of Flowers

Sunday, January 12, 2014

SHELBURNE FALLS — About 30,000 visitors a year come to the Bridge of Flowers and most of them come with cameras. On peak summer weekends, there are times when you have to weave through throngs of people snapping photos of the bridge or close-ups of its blossoms. The … 0

Giving a notorious descendant a voice

Sunday, January 5, 2014

WENDELL — It’s been more than 40 years since Kathy-Ann Becker felt the spring thaw tingle beneath her feet during a lunch-break walk from her job in Northampton’s Forbes Library. It came with a disturbing sense that something was very wrong. “A woman stood here in great pain” … 0

Stewardship plan for Pioneer property

Sunday, December 29, 2013

NORTHFIELD — Former high school science teacher John Lepore spent 1,600 hours crafting a plan for the Pioneer Valley Regional School’s 90-acre property. “It wasn’t work; it was fun,” Lepore told the School Committee when he presented a summary of the plan. Lepore volunteered nearly a year’s worth … 0

Down at ‘Willy’s Workshop’

Sunday, December 22, 2013

GREENFIELD — By day, Bill Levine analyzes blood samples as a hematology supervisor in Baystate Franklin Medical Center’s laboratory. But by night, the 65-year-old Greenfield resident spends hours in his home workshop, building wooden toys and Christmas presents … 0

Trip to Guyana shakes his worldview

Sunday, December 8, 2013

When Dennis LeBlanc, a former minister who now directs Greenfield’s Pastoral Counseling Center, was packing his bags in mid-October for three weeks in Guyana, with shorts, T-shirts and other gear for the South American country just north of … 3

Business looks to knit together fiber farms, community

Sunday, December 1, 2013

SOUTH DEERFIELD — Throughout the Pioneer Valley, consumers can buy local food from corn to apples. One South Deerfield woman, however, is adding one more item to the increasingly popular list of local goods — fiber. To promote … 0

Sharing his life’s journey

Sunday, November 17, 2013

GREENFIELD — Vincent J. Interlande was living what he thought was a “normal” life more than a decade ago, when the bottom fell out and life’s pressures took their toll. Interlande said his 30-year marriage ended around 2000, … 3

Northfield resident recalls WWII service

Sunday, November 10, 2013

NORTHFIELD — “We were told we had only one direction to go and that was forward. If we turned, our own men would shoot us.” Harold Williams was told in no uncertain terms that retreat was not an … 0

They’re making the most of middle school

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Toward the back of a Stoneleigh-Burnham School classroom one October afternoon, they sat in a circle on the ground: 13 seventh-grade girls, many reclining on bean bag chairs, and 53-year-old teacher Bill Ivey whose long brown hair rested … 0

Following her dream from Georgia to Maine

Sunday, October 27, 2013

ORANGE — “The weather turned bad, a storm front came in and then the sky turned this yellow-green color that I associate with tornadoes, the color of the sky the only time I had ever seen a tornado … 0

Abrah Dresdale’s headed for India

Sunday, October 20, 2013

At first blush, it seems hard to imagine a place more different from Franklin County than Tamil Nadu in southern India. Amid 70 acres of severely eroded “tropical dry evergreen forest” a few kilometers from the Bay of … 0