BITS & BYTES: NightWood returns to the mountain; ACA open enrollment; BCC virtual open day; Zoom conversation with journalist Timothy Egan; 18 Degrees expands youth program

NightWood returns to The Mount from November 4th through December 31st

LENOX – The Mount, Edith Wharton’s Home presents its second year NightWood, an outdoor sound and light experience that immerses visitors in a fantastic winter landscape inspired by the architecture and surroundings of the place. This year’s NightWood combines music, light and theater elements into seven unique scenes.

Designer Chris Bocchiaro from Clerestory Light will design the show again this year. Bocchiaro has expanded the experience with two new scenes: The Eternal City – a journey deep into the forest that reveals a hidden metropolis full of life and energy – and The Conference of Trees – a dense tree population in the middle of conversation with imaginary voices through light and sound .

NightWood on the mountain. Photo: Lynne M. Anstett Imagery Art Works

“There is something evocative about being in the forest at night: a connection to our old past, to old traditions and long-forgotten experiences,” says Bocchiaro. “It releases a variety of emotions that vary from person to person. We wanted to evoke these emotions with a combination of light, sound and sculpture to create an atmosphere that stimulates memory and arouses the imagination. “

“Last year’s run was a phenomenal success; we were sold out, ”said Susan Wissler, Executive Director of The Mount. “Due to COVID and gathering restrictions, many people were unable to experience NightWood last year. This year we have more capacity and are starting earlier. We hope to do justice to everyone who wants to experience the magic and wonder of NightWood. “

NightWood runs from November 4 to December 31, Thursday through Sunday evenings, from 5 p.m. A special Opening Night Celebration on November 4th includes bistro dishes and craft cocktails. Tickets for the opening night are $ 100 per person. General tickets are $ 20 for adults, $ 10 for children 6-18 years old, and free for children 0-5 years old. Entry is limited and time-limited. Reservations are required and can be made online or by calling 413-551-5100. November 25 and November 24-25 December closed.


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The open registration for ACA insurance begins on November 1st; CHP employees are on hand to help consumers

Image courtesy of CHP

LARGE BARRINGTON – Starting November 1, the open enrollment season begins for Massachusetts residents covered by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance plans. The Community Health Programs (CHP) insurance team is available to help consumers with questions, plan changes or new registrations.

The open sign-up period runs until January 23, 2022, but ACA customers are urged to review their plans in November to begin the process and avoid any leakage of coverage. Many people covered by ACA plans will automatically be added back to their existing plans, but anyone with questions about coverage or wanting to change the plan must do so during this registration window to stay insured in 2022.

Citizens without insurance, including new residents, can also apply for coverage. The CHP insurance team can help free of charge. It is not necessary to be a CHP patient to use this service.

ACA-insured residents will receive an email reminding them to re-enroll. Renewals and new applications require specific paperwork and updated proof of income, and while this process can be completed online, not all have reliable internet and the process can seem complicated. CHP has four patient navigators that can help with re-enrollments or new applications. Navigators also help people figure out if the plan they have in place is appropriate.

Massachusetts state law requires all residents to be insured or face a tax penalty. The American Rescue Plan provides grants for the ACA’s monthly insurance premiums, but many ACA members are unaware of this additional financial benefit.

Patients who receive their health insurance through the Berkshire Fallon Health Collaborative (MassHealth) are not subject to open enrollment season requirements; their coverage can be changed at any time during the year.

Individuals in need of assistance can contact the CHP Insurance Registration Team at [email protected] or 413-717-6268. Applicants also have the option to renew or enroll online.


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Berkshire Community College is hosting a virtual open house

BCC sign campus
Berkshire Community College. Photo courtesy of BCC

PITTSFIELD – Berkshire Community College (BCC) will host a virtual open house on Saturday, November 6th from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., followed by an optional grant session at 11:30 a.m. Participants will:

  • Learn how to apply, register, and choose courses
  • Find out why BCC is the cheapest option in the region
  • Hear from faculty and staff about BCC’s programs and the variety of student support services
  • Learn how BCC courses are being rolled out to hundreds of schools or prepare students for immediate careers

All attendees will receive a free gift card for local lunches, a discount at the BCC bookstore, and the chance to win BCC swag. To register, visit

Participants in the grant session will learn the basics of submitting a free application for federal student aid (FAFSA). In addition, participants can speak to an academic advisor about the Spring 2022 course schedule.

Time pressure? Register for a 30-minute virtual information event with an admissions advisor who will provide you with the tools you need for application and registration. The next sessions are offered:

  • Friday, 10/22 at 12 o’clock
  • Wednesday 3 November at 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, November 18 at 12 o’clock
  • Wednesday, December 4th at 4 p.m.
  • Monday, December 13th at 6 p.m.

To register for an information event, visit For more information, email [email protected] or call 413-236-1630.


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Scoville Library hosts virtual event with journalist Timothy Egan

Timothy Egan. Photo via Twitter

SALISBURY – The Scoville Memorial Library will be interviewing journalist Timothy Egan through Zoom Saturday 6 November at 4 p.m.

The theme of the lecture is “Once There Were Giants: The New Fire Threat in the West”. Massive forest fires are not new, but today various missteps from a combination of climate change and the resulting drought have increased the dangers. Fire fighting and wilderness settlement threaten human and natural communities alike, including some of the largest trees in the world. The number of people was already high and is likely to increase, creating an underlying fear and insecurity for many residents of fire-prone areas.

Egan is a columnist for the New York Times and author of nine books, most recently “A Pilgrimage to Eternity”. He won the National Book Award for “The Worst Hard Time” and received a Pulitzer for reporting on the race in America.

Register using this link.


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18 Degrees expands youth program

PITTSFIELD – 18 Degrees, Family Services for Western MA, offers additional programs for young people in the Berkshires. These programs are designed to provide young people with the resources, skills and support that will help them achieve their goals. All youth programs from 18 Degrees aim to ignite the creativity of young people, support their ambitions, discover opportunities and break down barriers.

Safe Spaces programming expands the organization’s offerings for LGBTQ + youth and their families. 18 Degrees offers adolescents and young adults a safe, inclusive, just, accessible and healthy space to live loudly and be their authentic selves. Four self-help groups are offered: Live Out Loud Youth Project (two sections, for middle school and high school), Young Adult Affinity Group (for young adults aged 18-30), and Families with Pride (for elementary school students and their families). In addition, a parent education and self-help group, Parents / Caregivers Respecting Identities and Sexuality in Massachusetts or PRISM, offers support, strategies and education around LGBTQ + issues. For more information on LGBTQ + -related groups, please contact Emma Lenski at [email protected] or 413-770-7121.

18 Degrees also offers RAP, Inc., an after-school music production program that allows teenagers between the ages of 12 and 18 to earn money to help set and achieve artistic goals. Teens learn about music production, including songwriting, beat-making and production techniques, as well as financial literacy, through partnering with Greylock Federal Credit Union. Three iMacs come with Logic Pro X and everything you need to get started. For more information about RAP, Inc. contact Trevor Wheelock at [email protected] or 413-597-1259.


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