Calendar of Events
The events listed here are not all sponsored or conducted by BEAT. We offer them as a way of helping people participate in the full range of environmental events shaping our future.
Please send environmental news or calendar items to [email protected]
- til 2/4 | Morgan Bulkeley Retrospective – Pittsfield
- 11/21 Pittsfield Green Drinks – Pittsfield
- 11/21 | ABNC Geology Division Meeting – Athol
- 11/25 | Lee Mini Roadside Cleanup – Lee
- 12/29 | Millers River Watershed Council Annual Meeting – Athol
- 11/30 | Mass ECAN Conference – Westborough, MA
- 11/30 | Developing Brains: Potential Effects of Unconventional Oil and Natural Gas (UOG) Chemicals on Infants and Children – Webinar
- 11/30-12/2 | 2017 RootSkills Conference – Manchester, NH
- 12/1 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 12/2 | Cabin in the Woods: Thoreau in Northampton – Northampton
- 12/2 Sandra Steingraber: Fracked Gas, PCBs, Our Health – Lenox
- 12/6 BEAT Tracking Club – Lenox
- 12/7 | Great Barrington Green Drinks – Great Barrington
- 12/8 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 12/12 | Living Building Practitioner Full-Day Workshop – Boston
- 12/13 | ABNC Monthly Meeting – Athol
- 12/14 | Pittsfield Tree Watch Meeting – Pittsfield
- 12/15 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 12/15 BEAT Tracking Club – W. Stockbridge
- 12/16 | All Day Christmas Bird Count – Athol
- 12/19 | ABNC Geology Division Meeting – Athol
- 12/20 | 350MA Berkshire Node Meeting – Pittsfield
- 12/29 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 12/20 | Celebrate the Winter Solstice with Mindfulness – Hadley
- 12/30 | Lee Mini Roadside Cleanup – Lee
- 1/3 BEAT Tracking Club – Hinsdale
- 1/5 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 1/7 | Winter Animal Tracking – Northampton
- 1/12 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 1/16 | ABNC Geology Division Meeting – Athol
- 1/19 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 1/20 BEAT Tracking Club – Great Barrington
- 1/26 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 2/2 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 2/7 BEAT Tracking Club – Lenox
- 2/9 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 2/10 BEAT Tracking Club – Great Barrington
- 2/16 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 2/23 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 3/2 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 3/3 | Local Environmental Action 2018 – Boston, MA
- 3/9 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 3/16 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 3/23 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 3/30 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 4/6 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 4/13 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 4/13 – 4/15 | 2018 Northeast Natural History Conference – Burlington, VT
- 4/20 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 4/27 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 5/4 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 5/11 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 5/18 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 5/25 BEAT Kiwi Removal – Pittsfield
- 6/10 – 6/15 | Orion Environmental Writers’ Workshop – Rhinebeck, NY
BEAT’s Wildlife Tracking Club
1st Wednesday and 3rd Saturday of the month
9 AM – 12 noon
Locations vary throughout Berkshire County
BEAT’s Wildlife Tracking group meets twice monthly, on the 1st Wednesday and the 3rd Saturday. It is open to the public and runs in Berkshire County. There is an annual membership fee of $15.00. One-time participants can attend an individual event for $5.00.
Wednesday Dec. 6th | 12 PM – 3 PM | G. Darey Housatonic Valley Wildlife Management Area, Lenox
A 818 acre preserve right along the Housatonic River. This event takes place during the deer shotgun season, what’s more this property is next door to the Lenox Sportsmans Club. For these reasons we have decided to change the time from 9am-12pm to 12pm-3pm. Please wear orange.
Directions from Lenox: HERE
Saturday Dec. 15th | 9 AM – 12 PM | Maple Hill Wildlife Management Area, West Stockbridge
A 410 acre preserve in West Stockbridge with a great view of Mt Greylock and the Taconic Range. Please wear orange.
Directions from West Stockbridge: HERE
Wednesday Jan. 3rd | 9 AM – 2 PM | Warner Hill, Hinsdale
An extended event led by Berkshire Wildlife Tracker, Jim Pellitier. Event runs from 9am-2pm. Last time out we found two moose skulls. Definitely not an event to be missed!
Directions from Pittsfield: HERE
Saturday Jan. 20th | 9 AM – 12 PM | Myrin Preserve, Great Barrington
The always reliable Myrin Preserve is sure to offer up some wildlife tracking mysteries. Over the years we’ve found it to be one of the very best places to track bobcat and examine their scratch-back sign.
Directions from Great Barrington: HERE
Wednesday Feb 7th | 9 AM – 12 PM | Post Farm Marsh, Lenox Dale
Situated alongside Woods Pond and October Mountain State Forest, Post Farm Marsh offers acres and acres of fields and forests for our tracking enjoyment.
Directions from Lenox: HERE
Saturday Feb 10th | Thomas and Palmer Brook Preserve, Great Barrington
Note the unusual date, the second Saturday of the month rather than the third. This 219 acre parcel is one of BNRC’s newest. Located alongside route 23 in Great Barrington, this wetland complex should provide good winter tracking. Over the summer one of BEAT’s trail cameras captured this little gem: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ikl_pRiU-oU
Directions from Great Barrington: HERE
Email [email protected] for more information or to attend the next meeting.
1) to educate the public (and each other) on wildlife tracking and other naturalist skills (including birding and plant identification)
2) to collect data (such as wildlife movement) for organizations in a position to act (like BEAT, MassWildlife, or a land trust)
3) to establish a robust wildlife tracking community
BEAT Kiwi Removals at Burbank Park
Fridays starting at 8:30 – 10AM
Burbank Park Boat Launch, Pittsfield, MA
Get your morning exercise and help eradicate this destructive invasive at the same time! Gloves and tools will be provided, but we encourage you to bring extra tools if you have them (loppers, pruning sheers, and pruning saws).
Directions from the center of Pittsfield: HERE
Hardy Kiwi is an exotic invasive ornamental that threatens forests in western Massachusetts through complete domination of mature trees. Once it germinates, it will climb surrounding vegetation and eventually kill its support. Hardy kiwi can grow over 20 feet in a year. It has become a major problem in places such as Kennedy Park and Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, and now Burbank Park.
Contact: Elia Del Molino (413) 429-6416 or [email protected]
Pittsfield Green Drinks
Sponsored by Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT)
J. Allen’s Clubhouse, 41 North Street, Pittsfield
Participating in Urban Forestry & Caring for Your Own Trees
Our November meeting will feature Laurie Reid from the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). Reid is an Urban Forester for the Greening the Gateway Cities Program in Pittsfield, a state-funded program working to increase canopy cover and lower energy costs in designated Gateway Cities. BEAT is the community partner in Pittsfield for this state-wide program.
Reid will talk about the importance of urban trees and how these canopies contribute to our communities. She will also give a mini workshop focusing on young tree care.
Reid has worked with the Greening the Gateway Cities Program, DCR’s Asian Long Horned Beetle program, and the Connecticut Department of Forestry. She studied forestry at UMass Amherst and has worked with the Forest Service and Consulting Foresters.
Each month guest speaker talks for about 15 minutes beginning at 6 PM. The presentation, which is free and open to the public, will be followed by discussion and Q&A.
Great Barrington Green Drinks
First Thursday of the Month
5:30 PM | The Prairie Whale | 178 Main St. | Great Barrington, MA
So grab a friend or two and bring them down to share what you’re working on (green or not) and meet others in the community.
Northern Berkshire Green Drinks
Purple Pub Annex, Spring St., Williamstown, MA
Pittsfield Tree Watch Monthly Meeting
Second Thursday of every month | 4 – 5:30 PM
Pittsfield Senior Center, 330 North Street, Pittsfield
TREE OF THE MONTH: Butternut
See info sheet HERE
Upcoming Clinics : November 14 from 4 – 5:30 PM
Pittsfield Tree Watch works to:
- Help preserve existing Pittsfield trees
- Encourage tree planting
- Stand for the economic, social and environmental benefits of trees
Please come and learn more about what is happening to increase the number of trees in Pittsfield!
Morgan Bulkeley | Nature, Culture, Clash
September 29, 2017 – February 4, 2018
Berkshire Museum | 39 South St. | Pittsfield, MA
Humorous and ominous at the same time, Morgan Bulkeley’s images offer compelling scenarios where humans are pitted against nature, with nature holding the advantage. Morgan Bulkeley: Nature Culture Clash is a solo exhibition of paintings and sculptures by the Berkshire-based artist, curated by Geoffrey Young.
A significant career retrospective covering five decades, Morgan Bulkeley: Nature Culture Clash includes a wide range of work, from early drawings and watercolors to a recent series of small paintings in gouache depicting a vivid array of birds. The exhibition encompasses carved and painted wood masks and panels, tiny wooden “whimseys,” large oil paintings, sculpture, and a site-specific installation.
Massachusetts Ecosystem Climate Adaptation Network Conference
Thursday, November 30th | 9 AM – 5 PM
Division of Fisheries & Wildlife Headquarters | 1 Rabbit Hill Rd. Westborough, MA
The Massachusetts Ecosystem Climate Adaptation Network is launching! A community of practice for climate adaptation practitioners and researchers who are interested in ecosystem resilience and natural resources conservation in Massachusetts.
Join us for a one-day conference to help launch this new network and shape adaptation action in Massachusetts.
• Meet new colleagues and mingle with existing partners
• Learn about adaptation work in Massachusetts
• Develop outreach messages during the climate adaptation communications training
• Contribute to the state climate adaptation and hazard mitigation plan
• Showcase your adaptation projects
Registration is free and lunch will be provided. Full agenda to be announced on our website and via the Mass ECAN listserv. Sponsorship opportunities available. Space is limited.
Developing Brains: Potential Effect of Unconventional Oil and Natural Gas (UOG) Chemicals on Infants and Children
Thursday, November 30th | 12:30 – 2:15 PM
This collaboration will be bringing together varying perspectives from three panelists covering results from the first comprehensive look at whether there is risk for adverse neurological and neurodevelopmental harm from UOG. Specifically, we will be covering five major pollutant categories associated with fracking and UOG that have put young children at risk for neurodevelopmental effects and issues like problems with memory, intellectual function and learning.
The webinar is organized around three topics:
Topic 1. Chemicals Associated with UOG Development and the Significant Impact of Pollutants on Neurodevelopment
–Eric London, MD
Topic 2. Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals and Effects on the Developing Nervous System
-Heather Patisaul, PhD
Topic 3. The Pediatric Perspective: Health Needs and Policy Considerations
-Larysa Dyrszka, MD
Who is this webinar intended for? The webinar is intended to educate both the lay audience as well as scientists and health professionals. Health professionals will be able to integrate what they learn into their professional research/teaching/communications roles and; 2) improve understanding concerning existing research and policy gaps and explore areas where future research/policy focus and funding should be prioritized.
Fracked Gas, PCBs, and Our Health
An Evening with Sandra Steingraber
Saturday, December 2nd | 5 – 7 PM
Lenox Memorial High School | 197 East St. Lenox, MA
Join us on December 2nd for an evening with Sandra Steingraber, renowned ecologist and author. Steingraber will speak about how PCBs, fracked gas, and pipelines are impacting ecological and human health. She brings a clear, passionate voice to the complex evidence of biology.
This event is FREE and open to all.
Dr. Steingraber’s 1997 book Living Downstream: An Ecologist’s Personal Investigation of Cancer and the Environment changed the way we think about toxic chemicals and their connections to cancer. Living Downstream was based on by Steingraber’s personal journey as a cancer survivor and her career as a scientist. In 2010 the book was released as a film.
Steingraber has written extensively about topics ranging from climate change and toxic chemical exposure to developmental and reproductive disorders.
Steingraber’s other works include Raising Elijah: Protecting Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis, Having Faith: An Ecologist’s Journey to Motherhood, and Post Diagnosis. She also is featured in the recent documentary “Unfractured” as an activist speaking out about the environmental risks of fracking.
PCBs (Polychlorinated biphenyls) are the toxic chemical that pollutes the Housatonic River and has contaminated the food chain of the earth. Fracked gas and the pipelines carrying that gas have been on the frontline of environmental debates as severe dangers to the environment.
The presentation begins at 5 PM and will be followed by a question and answer period, as well as a book-signing.
Cabin in the Woods: A Walk Back into Thoreau’s Time
Saturday, December 2nd | 1 – 3:30 PM
2017 marks the 200th anniversary of Henry David Thoreau – the great American naturalist, writer, philosopher, and social reformer. Born on July 12, 1817 in Concord, Massachusetts, Thoreau is being celebrated nationwide this year in numerous ways, including the first-ever Massachusetts Statewide Read.
Kestrel Land Trust is joining this celebration by hosting its fourth and final Thoreau Bicentennial event on Saturday, December 2. Join us for a reflective and inspiring nature walk and talk at Starlight Llama Bed & Breakfast in Northampton. We’ll walk to a reproduction of Thoreau’s cabin built by our host, John Clapp, who will read the “conservation” chapter of his Tale of Two Cabins: Comparative Stories of Thoreau’s Cabin, Nature, and Life. We’ll then take a loop walk in the forest, and along the way, we’ll share our favorite passages and offer reflections on the life, work, and legacy of Thoreau. The finale will be a gathering back at the B&B for hot chocolate!
You may purchase a copy of John Clapp’s book at the event, with a portion of the proceeds generously being donated to Kestrel.
Bring your favorite Thoreau passage to read aloud. Visit the Walden Woods Project online to see a list of all of the works by Thoreau that are available in digital format.
“People are particularly drawn to Thoreau’s belief of finding spirituality in nature – a philosophy woven throughout his books and essays. As our lives become ever more complex, we hunger for simplicity and a communion with nature that Thoreau insists will lead to truth and spiritual renewal.” – Walden Woods Project
Registration is required, and space is limited to 20 participants.
The snow/rain date is Saturday, December 9. The event is free, though donations are welcome.
2017 RootSkills Conference
November 30 – December 2, 2017
We are thrilled to announce our 2017 RootSkills Keynote Speakers: San Juana Olivares and Jan Schlichtmann!
Ms. Olivares is the President and CEO of the Genesee County Hispanic / Latino Collaborative and a key organizer in the Flint, MI Water Crises. Mr. Schlichtmann is best known for his representation of the “Woburn 8” in the 1980’s, a case chronicled in the film A Civil Action.
Living Building Practitioner Training : Full-Day Workshop
Tuesday, December 12th | 9 AM – 5 PM
50 Milk St. | ‘Windrose’ Conference Room | Boston, MA
The Living Building Challenge asks:
What if every single act of design and construction made the world a better place?
Join the USGBC Massachusetts Chapter, Boston Living Building Challenge Collaborative and Bruner / Cott & Associates for a day-long training session on the Living Future Institute’s Living Building Challenge (LBC). This workshop is designed for industry professionals who are ready to take a deep dive into the world’s most rigorous proven performance standard for buildings and gain the tools necessary to successfully lead LBC projects.
The session will provide participants with an understanding of the LBC process in preparation for project management and greater involvement with the Living Building Challenge Collaborative (including LBC Ambassador accreditation).
This workshop will:
- Discuss “What does good look like?”;
- Integrate lecture, conversation, and workshop styles into the session to provide opportunities for robust discussion and collaboration throughout the day;
- Encourage participation from a diversity of professions to stimulate rich conversation through a multidisciplinary lens;
- Guide participants through the essence of the Challenge by sharing lessons learned, discussing challenges of LBC verification, and outlining the LBC as a process, rather than a checklist.
We hope you will join us in growing the LBC design framework by adopting it into your own projects and strengthening the network of practitioners who are collectively pushing the boundaries of how design and construction can work to make the world a better place.
Christopher Chamberland Civil Engineer, Berkshire Design Group
Jason Forney Principal, Bruner/Cott Architects
Lisa Carey Moore LEED AP; Senior Sustainability Analyst, Integrated Eco Strategy, LLC
DiAnn Mroszczak LEED AP BD+C; LBC Collaborative Facilitator; Designer, Prellwitz Chilinski Associates, Inc.
Christopher Nielson Architect, Bruner/Cott Architects
Charley Stevenson Principal, Integrated Eco Strategy, LLC
Please contact Alyssa Curran at [email protected] if you have any questions about this event.
Celebrate the Winter Solstice with Mindfulness
Experience this seasonal turning point through nature & spirit
Wednesday, December 20th | 6 – 7:30 PM
Silvio O Conte National Wildlife Refuge | Hadley, MA
Winter Animal Tracking
Sunday, January 7th | 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Pioneer Valley | Register for location information
Have you ever been in the woods and wondered “who’s been here?” Join us for the art and science of tracking. Learn how to read signs and tell the stories of the landscape and learn terminology so you can have a common language for wildlife conservation efforts. In our tracking classes, throughout the year, beginner and expert trackers come together and are immersed in ancient and modern teachings. Explore your understanding of the natural world through the eyes of a tracker. Bring your field guides, journal and sense of wonder.
There’s no better teacher than experience…learn and practice,
* the 5 arts of tracking;
* the art of questioning;
* 3 perspectives of tracking;
* mind’s eye training;
* field journaling!
For Adults, Teens, Families
$50/adult, $30/child with adult prepaid (add $10/person if pay day of)
Local Environmental Action 2018
March 3, 2018
March 3rd, 2018 in Boston will be a full day of keynote speakers and workshops, and an opportunity to re-connect with others doing work similar to yours. This day gives you the chance to hear from local leaders across the Commonwealth who are deeply involved in making the world a better place. Please register today to and join us for a day of renewed purpose in Boston.
Powerful solutions start at the local level. At the end of this conference you will go home re-inspired, with the tools to be an even more effective local leader. or if you are just starting out, to become an environmental champion in your community.
Last year we had a wonderful day with more than 500 local leaders who, like you, are making their communities better. This year will be another day of community and inspiration. Buy your tickets today here!
2018 Northeast Natural History Conference
April 13 – 15, 2018
Sheraton Hotel | Burlington, VT
The Northeast Natural History Conference will be held within the elegant conference facilities of the Sheraton Hotel in Burlington, VT, which is on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain, north of Albany, northwest of Boston, and south of Montreal. The venue is just off Interstate 89 and is easily reachable by multiple routes from along Route 90 in Massachusets.
Once again, participants have the convenience of accommodations under the same roof as the conference.
Pre-conference field trips and workshops will be on Friday, with all oral and poster presentations and other conference activities on Saturday and Sunday.
The Northeast Natural History Conference continues to maintain its long-held standard of being the largest regional broad-spectrum forum for researchers, university professors, students, natural resource managers, and naturalists to present current information on the varied aspects of field biology (freshwater, marine, and terrestrial) and natural history for the northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. It serves as a premier venue to identify research and management needs, foster friendships and collegial relationships, and encourage a greater region-wide interest in natural history by bringing people with diverse backgrounds together. Students are especially welcome at this very collegial and supportive conference.
The session organizers welcome inquiries. Each session has 4 presentations.
Forest Ecology … Peter Palmiotto
Full-Cycle Biology/Ecology … Jason Hill
Fungal Ecology … Pierre-Luc Chagnon
Montane Ecology … Jason Hill
Vernal Pool Ecology and Conservation … Steve Faccio and Elizabeth Morse
Wetland Ecology and Restoration … Catherine Owen Koning
Butterfly Conservation and Ecology in the Northeast … Kent McFarland
Ecology of Vermont’s Bats … Meghan Lout
Landscape Ecology of Stream Macroinvertebrates … Sean Regalado
Moths (Lepidoptera) as Environmental Indicators … Michael Sabourin
Odonate Natural History … Bryan Pfeiffer
Pollinator Ecology … Carla Fenner
Shrubland and Grassland Bird Ecology and Conservation … Rosalind Renfrew
White-nose Syndrome in Bats of the Northeast … Craig Frank
Climate Change and Plant Migration … Jesse Bellemare
Fern Ecology … Dave Barrington and Cathy Paris
Natural History Collections: Botany … Christian Schorn
The Bowser Road Mastodon (NY): Implications about the Demise of a Species … Michael Gramly
Additional sessions are under discussion.
This is an open call to …
We welcome your involvement. What would you like to share?
Registration will be open soon, so this is a good time to start planning your participation.
For information, click on any link above.
Orion Environmental Writers’ Workshop
June 10 – 15, 2018
Omega Institute | Rhinebeck, NY
The country’s foremost workshop for people interested in writing about nature and culture. Now at the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, New York.
Connect with Orion writers and editors in order to understand more deeply Orion’s approach to the relationship between literature and the natural world.
The curriculum will include faculty readings and lectures, student readings, and small group classes dedicated to poetry, fiction, and nonfiction.
Applications will open on November 15, 2017.
Visit orionmagazine.org/workshops for more information.
Questions? Email Orion here.