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Inspiring Young People

Junior Achievement of Western Mass., working in concert with Associated Industries of Mass. (AIM) and a host of area businesses, staged the inaugural JA Inspire program at the MassMutual Center late last month. The event is a type of job fair for area young people, designed to not only introduce them to potential careers and area employers, but offer insights into what it will take to enter these fields. More than 400 students from 12 area schools and youth organizations attended, and 42 area companies participated.

Jennifer Connelly, president of JA of Western Mass., with students from Granite Valley Middle School in Monson

Jennifer Connelly, president of JA of Western Mass., with students from Granite Valley Middle School in Monson

Kristin Carlson, president of Peerless Precision, talks with a student about opportunities in manufacturing while Dawn Creighton, Western Mass. Director for AIM, listens in

Kristin Carlson, president of Peerless Precision, talks with a student about opportunities in manufacturing while Dawn Creighton, Western Mass. Director for AIM, listens in

students visit the Comcast booth

students visit the Comcast booth

students from M. Marcus Kiley Middle School in Springfield pose for a group shot

students from M. Marcus Kiley Middle School in Springfield pose for a group shot

students take part in the activities at the Florence Bank booth

students take part in the activities at the Florence Bank booth



Paul Harris Winners

The Rotary Club of Holyoke recently bestowed Paul Harris Fellowships, Rotary International’s highest honor, upon two community leaders, Peter Rosskothen and Edward Caisse III. Rosskothen is co-owner of the Log Cabin Banquet & Meeting House, the Delaney House, and other businesses. He is actively involved with a number of area groups and organizations, including the Holyoke Chamber of Commerce, the Pioneer Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, and Link to Libraries. Caisse is unit director of High Risk/Community Initiatives for the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department, known for his work with the Safe Neighborhoods Initiative in Holyoke. Here, Holyoke Rotary Club President Robert McKay, center, congratulates Rosskothen, left, and Caisse.



TWO Grants

Training & Workforce Options (TWO) helped obtain grants to train workers at Savage Arms in Westfield and Conklin Office Furniture in Holyoke. The Baker-Polito administration in March announced the awarding of $7.48 million in Workforce Training Fund Program grants that will fund training for almost 6,000 workers and is expected to create more than 1,100 new jobs in the Commonwealth over the next two years. The awarded grants included $238,485 for customized training for 67 workers at Savage Arms and $48,820 to train 72 workers at Conklin Office Furniture. The training at Savage Arms will help workers learn to operate computer numerical control (CNC) machines. The grant also includes training in English as a second language. The company expects to add 54 new jobs by 2021. The grant for Conklin Office Furniture will pay for the training of 72 workers in a range of skills, from customer service and team building to sales and leadership. Here, Mark Stafinksi, left, who completed the Introduction to Manufacturing Technologies course facilitated by TWO, stands with Michael Welsh, director of Human Resources at Savage Arms, and Tracye Whitfield, director of Business Development at TWO.



Breaking Ground

MassMutual was joined by Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, and the Fallon Company as it broke ground recently on the company’s new commercial building in Boston’s booming Seaport district at 10 Fan Pier Boulevard. This is an integral milestone in support of MassMutual’s multi-year plan to expand in its home state of Massachusetts. Once completed, the new, 17-story, 310,000-square-foot building will house approximately 1,000 MassMutual employees. MassMutual is also renewing its commitment to Springfield, the city of its founding, by adding 1,500 jobs to its headquarters by the end of 2021. Here, MassMutual Chairman, President, and CEO Roger Crandall (eighth from left) is holding the original shovel used for the groundbreaking of MassMutual’s headquarters building in Springfield in 1925. From left, Sean Anderson, head of Facilities at MassMutual; Susan Cicco, head of Human Resources & Employee Experience at MassMutual; Richard Martini, chief operating officer at the Fallon Company; Anis Baig, head of Talent Acquisition & People Analytics at MassMutual; Jennifer Halloran, head of Marketing and Brand at MassMutual; Joe Fallon, founder, president, and CEO of the Fallon Company; Walsh; Crandall; Baker; Teresa Hassara, head of Workplace Solutions at MassMutual; Pia Flanagan, chief of staff at MassMutual; Mike Fanning, head of MassMutual U.S. (MMUS); Gareth Ross, head of Enterprise Technology and Experience at MassMutual, and Renee Roeder, head of the MMUS Business Project Management Office at MassMutual.



Legacy Gift

During her lifetime, Elaine Marieb donated more than $1.5 million to Holyoke Community College in large and small amounts she once described as “tokens of gratitude” to the institution where she earned her nursing degree and taught biology for 24 years. Even after her death in December, Marieb’s generosity continues. HCC is the beneficiary of a $1 million legacy gift Marieb set up as part of her estate plan, money earmarked for HCC programs that support non-traditional-age students. The gift was officially announced on May 28 at HCC’s monthly board of trustees meeting, followed by the presentation of a $1 million ceremonial check. Pictured, from left, HCC Foundation board chair John Driscoll, HCC Vice President of Institutional Advancement Amanda Sbriscia, HCC President Christina Royal, and HCC board of trustees chair Robert Gilbert hold a ceremonial check for $1 million from the Elaine Nicpon Marieb Foundation.



Rally Against Cancer

Country Bank’s Employee Charitable Giving program recently donated $26,000 to the Jimmy Fund’s Rally Against Cancer. Team captains Eric Devine, Bonnie Trudeau-Wood, and Jeremy Toussaint led Team Country Bank with fundraising activities to help them exceed their goal of $25,000 and claim the first-place spot in the Corporate Team Challenge. Fundraising activities included staff-donated raffle baskets for employees to win, paying to wear jeans on casual Fridays, a bus trip, bake sales, and online staff donations. In addition to these activities, Country Bank provided a generous matching donation.

Chamber Corners

1BERKSHIRE

www.1berkshire.com

(413) 499-1600

• June 25: Chamber Nite, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Kittredge House, 444 Main St., Dalton. This event is a free networking opportunity for members of 1Berkshire.

 

AMHERST AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.amherstarea.com

(413) 253-0700

• June 12: New Members Reception, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Powerhouse at Amherst College. Recognizing our newest members with an evening of live music, a signature summer cocktail, food tastings, and networking. Visit www.amherstarea.com/events to register.

• June 13-15: Taste of Amherst, Thursday, 5-9 p.m.; Friday, 5-10 p.m., Saturday, noon to 10 p.m. The Amherst Area Chamber and the Amherst Business Improvement District present Taste of Amherst, bringing together local restaurants and food vendors, live music, carnival activities, and more on the Amherst Town Common. Visit www.amherstarea.com/events to register.

 

FRANKLIN COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.franklincc.org

(413) 773-5463

• June 19: Business After Hours, 5-7 p.m., hosted by People’s United Bank, 45 Federal St., Greenfield. Networking event with refreshments sponsored by People’s United Bank. Cost: $10. To register, e-mail www.franklincc.org.

• June 21: Annual Meeting and Legislative Breakfast, 7:30-9 a.m., hosted by Eaglebrook School, Deerfield. Cost: $15 for members, $20 general admission. To register, e-mail www.franklincc.org.

 

GREATER CHICOPEE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.chicopeechamber.org

(413) 594-2101

• June 13: Business After Hours: Interstate Towing Inc. 20th anniversary celebration, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Series sponsored by Polish National Credit Union. Marketing tables available for $75. Free to attend, but RSVP required. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

• June 19: Salute Breakfast, 7:15-9 a.m., hosted by Elms College Campus Center. Sponsored by Westfield Bank, Holyoke Medical Center, Polish National Credit Union, N. Riley Construction Inc., USI Insurance Services, Spherion Staffing Services, and PeoplesBank. Chief Greeter: Jessica Dupont, Health New England and Dress for Success. Keynote speaker: Meghan Rothschild, Chikmedia. Cost: $23 for members, $28 for non-members. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

 

GREATER EASTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.easthamptonchamber.org

(413) 527-9414

• June 11: “In the Know” Panel Series and Networking, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Fort Hill Brewery, 30 Fort Hill Road, Easthampton. The Chamber offers the second in the “In The Know” panel series, where a panel made up of Gen Brough, president, Finck & Perras Insurance; Dave Griffin Jr., vice president, Dowd Agencies; and Matt Waugh, president, Waugh Agency Insurance will discuss insurance needs. Get the insight you need to consider to protect yourself and your business. Refreshments will be served courtesy of Nini’s. Cost: $15 for members, $30 for non-members. Pre-registration is a must. No tickets will be sold at the door. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

• June 26: Speaker Breakfast: Cyber Breach Symposium, 7:30-9 a.m., hosted by Williston Northampton School, 19 Payson Ave., Easthampton. Featuring Mat Reardon, Beazley Group. Learn what steps you can take to minimize your risk. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for non-members. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

 

GREATER HOLYOKE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.holyokechamber.com

(413) 534-3376

• June 19: Business Person of the Year and Annual Meeting Dinner Reception, 5-8 p.m., hosted by the Wherehouse?, 109 Lyman St., Holyoke. Join us for an elegant evening of recognition as we honor Barry Farrell of Farrell Funeral Home as our Business Person of the Year and Maria D. Ferrer, M.D. Beauty Salon as the Henry Fifield recipient. There will be plenty of food, drink, and connections. Past Business Person of the Year Mike Hamel will serve as master of ceremonies.

 

• June 26: Business After Hours and ribbon-cutting ceremony, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Pulp, 80 Race St., Holyoke. Join us as we celebrate the grand opening of one of Holyoke’s newest businesses. Pulp is a unique gallery right on the canals featuring the work of artists and makers. There will be light hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine, live music, art, and connections.

 

GREATER NORTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.northamptonchamber.com

(413) 584-1900

• June 13: Torch: Our Time to Shine, 6-10 p.m., hosted by the Academy of Music, Northampton. Sponsors: Cooley Dickinson, the Daily Hampshire Gazette, Florence Bank, PeoplesBank, BusinessWest, Leadership Pioneer Valley, Keiter Builders, and Aladco Linen Services. The opening red-carpet reception will feature community-facilitated illustration to envision the future of Northampton, a program with musical entertainment from the Downtown Sounds Co-Op House Band, Pioneer Valley Performing Arts’ Spectrum A Cappella, and the Green Street Brew. The program will honor leadership transitions within the community, including the organization’s own Suzanne Beck and her successor. The evening continues with a party under the stars, food, and festivities behind the Academy of Music. Cost: $150, community investor; $100, chamber supporter; $50, entrepreneur. Register at aomtheatre.ticketfly.com.

July 10: July [email protected], 5-7 p.m., hosted by Miss Florence Diner, 99 Main St., Florence. A networking event sponsored by Delap Real Estate, Northampton Cooperative Bank, and the Hub. Cost: $10 for members.

 

GREATER WESTFIELD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.westfieldbiz.org

(413) 568-1618

• June 13: Chamber’s 60th Diamond Celebration, 5-8:30 p.m., hosted by the Ranch Golf Club, 65 Sunnyside Road, Southwick. Sponsored by Diamond, Mestek Inc., Berkshire Bank, United Bank, Arrha Credit Union, Rehab Resolutions, G.I.L.T.E. Bakery Service, and Adform Interiors. Join us for dinner as the Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce celebrates 60 years of service to our business community. Join us for a walk down memory lane, and learn what is happening now and what the future will bring for the chamber. During the cocktail hour, network with some old friends, and hopefully make new ones. For every two tickets sold, you will receive a $100 gift card from the chamber to Andrew Grant Diamond Center. Guests will also receive a commemorative pin. Cost: $60 per person. Register online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For sponsorships or more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

• June 17: After 5 Connections, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Westfield Bank, 462 College Highway, Southwick. Refreshments will be served. A 50/50 raffle will benefit the chamber scholarship fund. Bring your business cards and make connections. Cost: free for chamber members, $15 for non-members (cash or credit paid at the door). Sign up online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

 

SPRINGFIELD REGIONAL CHAMBER

www.springfieldregionalchamber.com

(413) 787-1555

• June 19: “Powering Your Exports,” a program for manufacturing and tech companies, 8:30-10:30 a.m., hosted by TD Bank Conference Center, 1441 Main St., Springfield. Presented by the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network and the Massachusetts Export Center. Registration is free at www.msbdc.org.

 

WEST OF THE RIVER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.ourwrc.com

(413) 426-3880

• June 13: Annual Breakfast and Morning of Comedy, 7-9 a.m., hosted by Chez Josef, Agawam. The event will kick off with the welcoming of new chairman Ryan McLane and the incoming WRC board of directors. Then join us for a few laughs with comedian Tom Hayes from North Shore Comedy in Boston. Cost: $35 for members, $45 for non-members. Sponsorships and program advertising available. For more information and tickets to this event, contact the chamber office at (413) 426-3880 or [email protected]

 

YOUNG PROFESSIONAL SOCIETY OF GREATER SPRINGFIELD

springfieldyps.com

• June 13: Networking Night, 5-7 p.m., hosted by 350 Grill. Join us for our signature networking night and enjoy appetizers. Cost: free for members, $10 for non-members.

• June 25: Leadership Luncheon, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., hosted by Valley Venture Mentors, 276 Bridge St., Springfield. Enjoy an informal lunch and networking while hearing from Kristin Leutz, CEO of Valley Venture Mentors. Cost: free for members, $15 for non-members.

Features

Getting Creative

Kristin Leutz

Kristin Leutz says the inaugural Innovation Fest will provide a solid foundation on which to build.

HUBweek in Boston. Denver Startup Week. The Tom Tom Summit & Festival in Charlottesville, Va. South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.

These are just a few of the many highly successful and very well-attended entrepreneurship and innovation events now taking place across the country.

Some of them go on for a few days, others for a whole week, as their names make clear, said Kristen Leutz, executive director of Springfield-based Valley Venture Mentors (VVM), who has been to Startup Week and will likely attend some of those other gatherings in the months and years to come as she seeks to learn more about entrepreneurship ecosystems, how they work, and how they can be developed and expanded.

For right now, though, she’s busy putting together the latest addition to that list of summits. It will be called the Springfield Innovation Fest, or SIF for short, although its probably too early for an acronym to take hold.

Indeed, Leutz and her team at VVM are essentially starting from scratch and scrambling to pull things together for the June 12 event, to be staged at the Innovation Center on Bridge Street in Springfield. As she tells the story, those at VVM had been thinking about and talking about a summit — an event that would showcase this region’s burgeoning entrepreneurship ecosystem (and the many other things that are happening in and around Springfield) and take VVM’s Accelerator Awards banquet to a new and much higher plane. But they were initially focused on 2020, a round-number year with all kinds of meaning — until they decided not to wait that long to get the ball rolling.

“We decided to do this on a very short time frame,” she said. “Once we came up with the vision, we were all excited; we didn’t want to wait a another year. We said, ‘let’s lean into it and see what we can pull off.’”

Leutz told BusinessWest that the Springfield Innovation Fest certainly has a long way to go before it can be mentioned in the same sentence as those events in Boston, Denver, Central Texas, and Northern Virginia, but one has to start somewhere, create some buzz, and continually build on the foundation that’s been laid, and that is the very informal business plan for the festival.

“We decided to do this on a very short time frame. Once we came up with the vision, we were all excited; we didn’t want to wait a another year. We said, ‘let’s lean into it and see what we can pull off.’”

“Startup Week certainly wasn’t built in a day — or a week,” she said. “We want to see if we can gain some excitement and momentum for next year.”

The inaugural event, still very much in the planning stages, as noted, will feature a number of speakers, ample amounts of networking, and opportunities to get a taste of Springfield — figuratively and quite literally, with tours of the Springfield Museums and Fresh Paint mural art, as well as a visit to What’s on Tap Wednesday.

There are many goals for this year, said Leutz, listing everything from celebrating this region’s history of innovation and ‘firsts’ to recognizing the winners (and all the companies) in this year’s VVM Accelerator class, to moving the needle when it comes to putting Springfield and this region on the map as a startup and innovation hub.

“In the vein of these other festivals that showcase the startup and innovation economies, I thought that, given all that’s happening in Springfield, it was time for our own startup event,” she explained. “I want visibility for the work of entrepreneurship and innovation and how it affects our economy and how it affects traditional businesses as well as startups.

“The idea of being innovative goes beyond a startup company — it infiltrates everything that we do,” she went on. “Springfield is a city of firsts, and we really believe in that heritage and history, and we want people to see that it still is a city of innovation.”

For this issue and focus on business innovation, BusinessWest talked with Leutz about the launch of the SIF, what to expect this year, and where this summit can go in the years to come.

Summit Meeting

“How to Bootstrap the Bejeezus out of Your Startup.” “Think Like a Placemaker Transforming Neighborhoods.” “Future Forward: Live Better with Innovation in Healthcare.” “How to Help Female Founders Succeed (and Every Other Founder, Too).”

These are titles for just some of the presentations scheduled for the SIF, said Leutz, noting that they will cover two tracks — a startup track and an innovator track — and feature speakers that include both young entrepreneurs and leaders of several of the groups within that aforementioned entrepreneurship ecosystem.

And these presentations represent just one aspect of the festival, she went on, adding that there will be, as mentioned, several breaks for networking and collision-making, a showcase and lunch at which attendees can meet the VVM Accelerator and Summer Collegiate Accelerator startups as they showcase their businesses and compete for ‘VVM bucks,’ and also a pitch competition featuring the top five in the Accelerator and the awarding of prizes.

The full lineup is still very much a work in progress, even at this late date (remember, they started late), and the general ideas are to both call attention to the growing startup community and innovative energy in the region, and also give attendees something to take back home — whether that’s across the state or maybe cross-country (although that’s more likely to happen down the road).

This is the formula that those festivals mentioned at the top have followed, said Leutz, noting that many of them are works in progress as well.

That’s certainly the case with HUBweek, which was launched just three years ago, but now brings together attendees from 59 countries, 46 states, and 38 industries, according to the event’s website. Marketed as a gathering “where art, science, and technology collide,” HUBweek was founded by the Boston Globe, Harvard, MIT, and Massachusetts General Hospital, and its website describes it as “a giant petri dish welcoming impact-oriented artists, entrepreneurs, researchers, executives, makers, and up-and-comers. HUBweek brings together the curious, those building our future.”

Startup Week in Denver is in many ways similar, said Leutz, adding that she attended last fall’s festival and came away inspired to bring something with the same vibe, and energy, to the City of Homes.

“It was incredible,” she said, using that adjective to describe the scope of the show, the depth of the speakers, and the amount of planning and marketing that went into the event. “They had 1,000 applications for talks.”

While something to aspire to, these shows more importantly represent a model that can be replicated on a considerably smaller scale, she said, adding that, like the Boston show, she wants an event where worlds can collide, and, like Denver, she wants a “community-created event,” where people submit ideas for talks.

For this first show, organizers have put together a schedule of talks targeted toward entrepreneurs and would-be entrepreneurs, and ‘innovators,’ a broad constituency to be sure, said Leutz. Speakers, many of them still to be confirmed, include Christian Lagier, executive director of TechSpring; Mo Reed-McNally of the MassMutual Foundation, and Laura Masulis, transformative development fellow with MassDevelopment (they’re handling the talk on transforming neighborhoods); Bill Cole, leader of Living Local, and Tessa Murphy-Romboletti, director of SPARK EforAll Holyoke, who will lead a discussion titled “How to Revive Main Street”; and Daquan Oliver, president of WeThrive, the first-prize winner in last year’s VVM Accelerator Awards.

As for this year’s Accelerator class, it is smaller — by design (16 companies) — in order to provide more in-depth, customized support to the startups, said Leutz, adding that a smaller group enabled VVM to have a higher ratio of entrepreneurs in residence to startups.

Meanwhile, some of the cash traditionally handed out at the annual banquet as prizes has been awarded already in order to help the startups advance their ventures, said Leutz, adding that there is still plenty at stake at the June 12 showcase and final pitch.

All-day passes to the SIF are $50 each ($45 each for blocks of three or more), and potential attendees can buy an extra ticket so an entrepreneur can attend for free, said Leutz, adding that the admission charge is essentially to cover the cost of the event. Sponsorship opportunities are available, starting at $1,000. For more information, visit www.valleyventurementors.org.

Getting Started

Like the companies taking part in the VVM Accelerator, the SIF is essentially a startup venture, Leutz acknowledged, and one with considerable promise to grow well beyond its current size and scope.

It will likely never be on the same level as HUBweek or Denver Startup Week, but like those other events, it provides an opportunity to bring several worlds together and spark more innovation.

SIF is not part of the local lexicon yet, but Leutz and her team believe it soon will be.

George O’Brien can be reached at [email protected]

Agenda

JA Inspire Career Exploration Fair

May 28: Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts (JAWM), now celebrating its centennial anniversary, will host the JA Inspire Career Exploration Fair from 8 a.m. to noon at the MassMutual Center, 1277 Main St., Springfield. The JA Inspire program provides students with the opportunity to learn about careers from industry representatives in time to begin planning for high-school coursework and better prepare themselves for life after graduation. The program consists of four in-class lessons, plus the career exploration fair, all designed to engage students and help them explore education and career pathways, showcase careers in Western Mass. with a focus on high-wage and high-demand industries, and connect students with industry representatives who can share career advice and offer interactive exhibits during the career fair. Exhibitor space is still available at no charge. Exhibitors will present interactive and engaging career stations, while providing volunteer mentors to staff the career stations throughout the event. To reserve a career station, contact Connolly at (413) 747-7670 or [email protected] To learn more about the event, visit jawm.org/events or call (413) 747-7670.

Bay Path Graduate Spring Open House

May 29: Ready to take your career to the next level? A professional headshot and a graduate degree can help take you there. Attendees of Bay Path University’s spring graduate open house can meet with programs directors, faculty, admissions team members, and financial-aid representatives, and learn about the graduate-school admissions process, ways to finance an education, and more than 30 graduate degrees and certificates available at Bay Path University online or on campus, while enjoying light refreshments and entering to win raffle prizes. A professional photographer will also be at the event taking free headshots, perfect for use on a LinkedIn profile or résumé. The spring graduate open house is slated for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Bay Path’s Longmeadow campus at 588 Longmeadow St. For more information or to register, visit baypath.edu/visit or e-mail [email protected].

Girls on the Run 5K

June 2: Girls on the Run of Western MA will host its 5K celebration at 10:30 a.m at Springfield College. The mission of Girls on the Run is to inspire girls to be healthy, joyful, and confident using an experiential-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. Girls on the Run is a physical-activity-based, positive youth-development program that uses fun running games and dynamic discussions to teach life skills to girls in third through eighth grade. During the 10-week program, girls participate in lessons that foster confidence, build peer connections, and encourage community service while they prepare for an end-of-season, celebratory 5K event. Participation in the 5K event on June 2 is open to the public. About 950 girls from 68 school sites around Western Mass., as well as 280 volunteer coaches, have participated in the program this season. Around 2,500 participants are expected at the event. The pre-registration cost is $25 for adults and $10 for children and includes a Girls on the Run 5K event shirt. After a group warm-up, the event will begin on the outdoor track on Alden Street and will continue through the campus. Registration is open at www.girlsontherunwesternma.org, and will also be available the day of the event beginning at 9 a.m. For more information about the event, how to register, and volunteer opportunities, visit www.girlsontherunwesternma.org.

Family Business Center Leadership Summit

June 4: The Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley is gathering leaders of Western Mass. companies, agencies, and organizations to explore together the upcoming trends and forces all will need to respond to. About 100 local leaders will participate in a World Café-style session at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, led by strategic leadership coach Ingrid Bredenberg, that will result in an improved perspective on paths forward into the inevitable future. Tickets are $35 (there are also discount packages, sponsor opportunities, and roles as scribes and table hosts), and includes a networking-style dinner and a relevant, practical, stimulating exploration. The FBC is doing this to mark its 25th anniversary and first-ever leadership transition with an event that will creates wins and takeaways for all. For more information and to register, e-mail fambizpv.com/leadershipsummit.

Community Action Awards

June 13: Springfield Partners for Community Action will present a night of celebrating those in action within the community. The Community Action Awards will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Springfield Marriott Hotel and Conference Center. It will be a night of speakers, awards, handing out scholarships to Community Scholarship winners, and a silent auction for guests to participate in. Ticket purchase is available at communityactionevent.eventbrite.com. Springfield Partners for Community Action is the federally designated community action agency of Springfield whose mission is to provide resources that assist those in need to obtain economic stability and ultimately create a better way of life. For more information on the event, contact Natalia Arocho at (413) 263-6500, ext. 6516, or [email protected].

Paid Family and Medical Leave Seminar

June 20: Over the past few months, Massachusetts-based employers have been inundated with information about the upcoming Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave requirements. Unfortunately, this deluge of information has done little to answer employers’ pressing questions. The draft regulations are just that: a draft, and subject to change prior to the issuance of final regulations. But we do know some things for sure, and there is still some time before employer obligations go into effect. Royal, P.C. will host a discussion of the steps employers can begin to take to prepare for the implementation of Paid Family and Medical Leave. The event will be held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at 270 Pleasant St., Northampton. The price is $30 per person, and registration is limited. For more information or to register, contact Heather Loges at (413) 586-2288 or [email protected].

40 Under Forty Gala

June 20: BusinessWest will present its 13th annual 40 Under Forty Gala, a celebration of 40 young business and civic leaders in Western Mass. The lavish cocktail party, to begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, will feature butlered hors d’oeuvres, food stations, and entertainment — and, of course, the presentation of the class of 2019, which is profiled in the April 29 issue of BusinessWest and at BusinessWest.com. Also, the fifth Continued Excellence Award honoree will be announced. Limited standing-room-only tickets are still available for $75 per person. For more information, call (413) 781-8600, ext. 100, or e-mail [email protected]. PeoplesBank is the presenting sponsor, Health New England is the Continued Excellence Award sponsor, and WWLP-22 News is the media sponsor. Other sponsors include Baystate Health, the Isenberg School of Management, MP CPAs, Mercedes-Benz of Springfield, Live Nation, MGM Springfield, Comcast Business, and YPS of Greater Springfield (partner).

‘Thrive After 55’ Wellness Fair

June 21: State Sen. Eric Lesser announced that he will host the third annual “Thrive After 55” Wellness Fair in partnership with Health New England, Springfield College, and the Center for Human Development (CHD). This year’s fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Field House on the campus of Springfield College, 263 Alden St., Springfield. The fair is free and open to the public. With more than 70 local organizations ranging from health and fitness to nutrition and elder law, the annual fair will connect residents of the Greater Springfield area with information and resources to help them thrive. The event will feature several educational seminars which will highlight areas of interest for attendees, including estate planning and elder law, scam avoidance, and diet and nutrition. Heart Song Yoga Center of East Longmeadow will return for a third year with an interactive demonstration of chair yoga and movement. The free program includes a boxed lunch, hundreds of raffle prizes, and access to information and experts. To RSVP, call Lesser’s office at (413) 526-6501 or visit senatorlesser.com/thrive.

Filmmaking Workshops

June 24-28, July 8-12: The Berkshire Film and Media Collaborative (BFMC) will host two summer filmmaking workshops: one for 15- to 19-year-olds from Monday, June 24 to Friday, June 28, and one for 11- to 14-year-olds from Monday July 8 to Friday, July 12. These week-long workshops will meet daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Berkshire Community College’s South County Campus, 343 Main St., Great Barrington. Early dropoff (9 a.m.) and late pickup (5 p.m.) is available by request. The purpose of the workshops are twofold: for kids to experience what it’s like to work on a real movie crew from creation of an idea to the final edit of the project, and for the group to produce a high-quality short film championed in every aspect by everyone in the group. The kids will work collaboratively — performing as actors on camera; running the lights, camera, and sound; editing; and marketing the film’s premiere to the community. On the final night, parents, friends, and the public will be invited to attend, and the young filmmakers will participate in a question-and-answer session with the audience. Each participant will walk away with a copy of the film and the experience of creating a professional-quality film together. Specific topics covered will include story structure, screenwriting, character development, cinematography, sound recording and mixing, lighting, editing, sound design, and marketing. The course is being taught by writer, director, actor, and educator Patrick Toole. All equipment will be provided. The cost for the week-long workshop is $325. Students will need to bring lunch. Class size is limited. To register online, visit shop.berkshirecc.edu or call (413) 236-2127.

Chamber Corners

1BERKSHIRE

www.1berkshire.com

(413) 499-1600

• June 25: Chamber Nite, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Kittredge House, 444 Main St., Dalton. This event is a free networking opportunity for members of 1Berkshire.

AMHERST AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.amherstarea.com

(413) 253-0700

• May 29: Economic Development Panel, 4-6 p.m., hosted by the Old Chapel at UMass. A presentation of the state of economic development in Amherst and a panel discussion of the community’s strategic advantage as well as a vision for the future of economic development in the Amherst area. A reception to continue the conversation, with bites from the award-winning UMass Dining, will follow. Visit www.amherstarea.com/events to register.

• June 12: New Members Reception, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Powerhouse at Amherst College. Recognizing our newest members with an evening of live music, a signature summer cocktail, food tastings, and networking. Visit www.amherstarea.com/events to register.

• June 13-15: Taste of Amherst, Thursday, 5-9 p.m.; Friday, 5-10 p.m., Saturday, noon to 10 p.m. The Amherst Area Chamber and the Amherst Business Improvement District present Taste of Amherst, bringing together local restaurants and food vendors, live music, carnival activities, and more on the Amherst Town Common. Visit www.amherstarea.com/events to register.

GREATER CHICOPEE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.chicopeechamber.org

(413) 594-2101

• May 31: Chicopee Chamber of Commerce Annual Golf Tournament, 10 a.m. shotgun start, hosted by Chicopee Country Club. Presented by Polish National Credit Union. Sponsored by First American Insurance Agency Inc., Westfield Bank, Holyoke Medical Center, Poly-Plating Inc., Hampton Inn, Residence Inn of Chicopee, Tru by Hilton, ICNE, Roca Inc., and Health New England. Cost: $125 per golfer, $500 per team of four, and/or $20 golfer package that includes 25 raffle tickets and one mulligan. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

• June 4: CEO Luncheon,11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., hosted by Tru by Hilton, 440 Memorial Dr., Chicopee. A quarterly luncheon series where CEOs tell of how they rose to their positions. June’s luncheon will feature Christine Judd of Roca Inc. Series sponsored by Polish National Credit Union. Cost: $30 for members, $35 for non-members. Sign up online at www.chicopeechamber.org/events or call (413) 594-2101.

• June 8: Run the Runway 5K, 10 a.m., hosted by Westover Metropolitan Airport. Sponsored by Westfield Bank, Holyoke Medical Center, Polish National Credit Union, PeoplesBank, First American Insurance Agency Inc., Williams Distributing, Insurance Center of New England, and Northern Tree Service Inc. This a collaborative event with the Galaxy Community Council and Westover Metropolitan Airport, featuring a car show and festival immediately following the race. Race registration and vendor space still available. Visit www.chicopeechamber.org/run-the-runway for more information.

• June 13: Business After Hours: Interstate Towing Inc. 20th anniversary celebration, 4:30-6:30 p.m. Series sponsored by Polish National Credit Union. Marketing tables available for $75. Free to attend, but RSVP required. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

• June 19: Salute Breakfast, 7:15-9 a.m., hosted by Elms College Campus Center. Sponsored by Westfield Bank, Holyoke Medical Center, Polish National Credit Union, N. Riley Construction Inc., USI Insurance Services, Spherion Staffing Services, and PeoplesBank. Chief Greeter: Jessica Dupont, Health New England and Dress for Success. Keynote speaker: Meghan Rothschild, Chikmedia. Cost: $23 for members, $28 for non-members. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

GREATER EASTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.easthamptonchamber.org

(413) 527-9414

• June 11: “In the Know” Panel Series and Networking, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Fort Hill Brewery, 30 Fort Hill Road, Easthampton. The Chamber offers the second in the “In The Know” panel series, where a panel made up of Gen Brough, president, Finck & Perras Insurance; Dave Griffin Jr., vice president, Dowd Agencies; and Matt Waugh, president, Waugh Agency Insurance will discuss insurance needs. Get the insight you need to consider to protect yourself and your business. Refreshments will be served courtesy of Nini’s. Cost: $15 for members, $30 for non-members. Pre-registration is a must. No tickets will be sold at the door. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

• June 26: Speaker Breakfast: Cyber Breach Symposium, 7:30-9 a.m., hosted by Williston Northampton School, 19 Payson Ave., Easthampton. Featuring Mat Reardon, Beazley Group. Learn what steps you can take to minimize your risk. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for non-members. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

GREATER HOLYOKE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.holyokechamber.com

(413) 534-3376

• June 5: Business Connections Expo and Business After Hours, 1-7 p.m., hosted by the Delaney House, 3 Country Club Road, Holyoke. A chance for the public and business people can mingle and connect with colleagues and chamber members over light hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. The expo will end at 4 p.m., and vendors will have the opportunity to break down their tables and head back inside Delaney’s Grand Ballroom to make the connections they were unable to make during the course of the expo. The public will be able to come back at 4:30 p.m. for hot and elegant hors d’oeuvres, a cash bar, and an open patio with a roaring fire for a regular Business After Hours. Space is limited.

 n June 19: Business Person of the Year and Annual Meeting Dinner Reception, 5-8 p.m., hosted by the Wherehouse?, 109 Lyman St., Holyoke. Join us for an elegant evening of recognition as we honor Barry Farrell of Farrell Funeral Home as our Business Person of the Year and Maria D. Ferrer, M.D. Beauty Salon as the Henry Fifield recipient. There will be plenty of food, drink, and connections. Past Business Person of the Year Mike Hamel will serve as master of ceremonies.

 

• June 26: Business After Hours and ribbon-cutting ceremony, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Pulp, 80 Race St., Holyoke. Join us as we celebrate the grand opening of one of Holyoke’s newest businesses. Pulp is a unique gallery right on the canals featuring the work of artists and makers. There will be light hors d’oeuvres, beer and wine, live music, art, and connections.

GREATER NORTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.northamptonchamber.com

(413) 584-1900

• May 28: Workshop: “Upgrading to Office 365,” 9-11 a.m., hosted by the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. Cost: $35 for members, $45 for non-members.

• June 13: Torch: Our Time to Shine, 6-10 p.m., hosted by the Academy of Music, Northampton. Sponsors: Cooley Dickinson, the Daily Hampshire Gazette, Florence Bank, PeoplesBank, BusinessWest, Leadership Pioneer Valley, Keiter Builders, and Aladco Linen Services. The opening red-carpet reception will feature community-facilitated illustration to envision the future of Northampton, a program with musical entertainment from the Downtown Sounds Co-Op House Band, Pioneer Valley Performing Arts’ Spectrum A Cappella, and the Green Street Brew. The program will honor leadership transitions within the community, including the organization’s own Suzanne Beck and her successor. The evening continues with a party under the stars, food, and festivities behind the Academy of Music. Cost: $150, community investor; $100, chamber supporter; $50, entrepreneur. Register at aomtheatre.ticketfly.com.

• July 10: July [email protected], 5-7 p.m., hosted by Miss Florence Diner, 99 Main St., Florence. A networking event sponsored by Delap Real Estate, Northampton Cooperative Bank, and the Hub. Cost: $10 for members.

GREATER WESTFIELD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.westfieldbiz.org

(413) 568-1618

• June 3: Mayor’s Coffee Hour, 8-9 a.m., hosted by Hampden Village Community Center, 1 Village Green, Westfield. Join us for coffee with Westfield Mayor Brian Sullivan. This event is free and open to the public. To register, visit www.westfieldbiz.org/events or call (413) 568-1618 so we may give our host a proper head count.

• June 13: Chamber’s 60th Diamond Celebration, 5-8:30 p.m., hosted by the Ranch Golf Club, 65 Sunnyside Road, Southwick. Sponsored by Diamond, Mestek Inc., Berkshire Bank, United Bank, Arrha Credit Union, Rehab Resolutions, G.I.L.T.E. Bakery Service, and Adform Interiors. Join us for dinner as the Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce celebrates 60 years of service to our business community. Join us for a walk down memory lane, and learn what is happening now and what the future will bring for the chamber. During the cocktail hour, network with some old friends, and hopefully make new ones. For every two tickets sold, you will receive a $100 gift card from the chamber to Andrew Grant Diamond Center. Guests will also receive a commemorative pin. Cost: $60 per person. Register online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For sponsorships or more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

• June 17: After 5 Connections, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Westfield Bank, 462 College Highway, Southwick. Refreshments will be served. A 50/50 raffle will benefit the chamber scholarship fund. Bring your business cards and make connections. Cost: free for chamber members, $15 for non-members (cash or credit paid at the door). Sign up online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

SPRINGFIELD REGIONAL CHAMBER

www.springfieldregionalchamber.com

(413) 787-1555

• June 5: “Live from Springfield! It’s Wednesday Night Live,” annual meeting and celebration and Leadership Institute graduation, 5:30-8 p.m., hosted by Sheraton Springfield. Cost: $75 for members in advance, $85 for general admission. To register, visit www.springfieldregionalchamber.com, e-mail [email protected], or call (413) 755-1310.

• June 19: “Powering Your Exports,” a program for manufacturing and tech companies, 8:30-10:30 a.m., hosted by TD Bank Conference Center, 1441 Main St., Springfield. Presented by the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network and the Massachusetts Export Center. Registration is free at www.msbdc.org.

WEST OF THE RIVER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.ourwrc.com

(413) 426-3880

• June 5: Wicked Wednesday, 5-7 p.m., hosted By Trinity Pub/Irish Cultural Center, West Springfield. Wicked Wednesdays are monthly social events, hosted by various businesses and restaurants, that bring members and non-members together to network in a laid-back atmosphere. Cost: free for members, $10 for non-members. For more information, call the chamber office at (413) 426-3880, or register at www.westoftheriverchamber.com.

• June 13: Annual Breakfast and Morning of Comedy, 7-9 a.m., hosted by Chez Josef, Agawam. The event will kick off with the welcoming of new chairman Ryan McLane and the incoming WRC board of directors. Then join us for a few laughs with comedian Tom Hayes from North Shore Comedy in Boston. Cost: $35 for members, $45 for non-members. Sponsorships and program advertising available. For more information and tickets to this event, contact the chamber office at (413) 426-3880 or [email protected]

YOUNG PROFESSIONAL SOCIETY OF GREATER SPRINGFIELD

springfieldyps.com

• June 13: Networking Night, 5-7 p.m., hosted by 350 Grill. Join us for our signature networking night and enjoy appetizers. Cost: free for members, $10 for non-members.

• June 25: Leadership Luncheon, 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., hosted by Valley Venture Mentors, 276 Bridge St., Springfield. Enjoy an informal lunch and networking while hearing from Kristin Leutz, CEO of Valley Venture Mentors. Cost: free for members, $15 for non-members.

Agenda

‘How Will Marijuana Affect the Workplace’

May 14: MassHire Holyoke Career Center will host a workshop titled “How Will Marijuana Affect the Workplace In Massachusetts” with attorney Erica Flores from Skoler, Abbott & Presser. This free event will take place from 8 to 10 a.m. Flores will the current state of the law regarding marijuana use by employees for both medical and recreational purposes, including employers’ obligations to accommodate marijuana use by disabled employees; proposed legislation that would prohibit employers from discriminating against employees who use recreational marijuana and how this rule would affect employers’ current rights in the workplace; and the importance of reasonable-suspicion testing in this new legal climate and strategies for implementing and enforcing such testing programs.

‘Turn Up The You and Quiet The Critic’

May 15: Baystate Health’s Every Woman program will hold a special evening titled “Turn Up the You and Quiet the Critic” at 5:30 p.m. at 121 Club at Eastworks, 116 Pleasant St., Easthampton. Keynote speaker Pam Victor, president of Happier Valley Comedy, will discuss “Five Techniques for Quieting Your Inner Critic,” and there will be live music, food, women’s health information, and shopping with local vendors. Victor is a professional improviser, facilitator, teacher, and the founder and president of Happier Valley Comedy, the first improv theater and training center in Western Mass. She directs the three branches of the company: the comedy-training center, regular shows, and the Through Laughter program for professional and personal development. The event cost is $15. To register, visit turnuptheyou.eventbrite.com. For more information, call (413) 794-5200.

Maifest Block Party

May 17-18: Maifest is a colorful, joyous tradition in Germany. It celebrates the arrival of spring, when food is plentiful and spirits flow freely. The tradition will unfold in Springfield with the Maifest Block Party, a two-day community event, presented by the Student Prince & the Fort, set to take place outdoors on Fort Street and inside the restaurant. Live bands will fill the air with music while guests sip beer and head inside for a Maifest menu filled with spring delights. This year, a generous portion of the proceeds will benefit Rays of Hope to bring the organization closer to its mission of finding a cure for breast cancer. The festivities will be emceed by radio personality Lopez from WMAS. The tapping of the ceremonial keg will be headed by Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and Denise Jordan, chair of the Rays of Hope campaign, who is also executive director of the Springfield Housing Authority. Sgt. Brian Elliott of the Springfield Police Department will host the ceremonial cheer. Rudi Scherff of the Student Prince will give a brief talk about the Maifest tradition.

Labor and Employment Law Conference

May 21: Skoler, Abbott & Presser, P.C. will hold a Labor and Employment Law Conference from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Springfield. “The conference will deliver an in-depth review of some of the most challenging employment-law issues organizations, human-resources personnel, and management have faced over the past year, and will provide cutting-edge insights needed for surviving challenges on the horizon,” said Partner Marylou Fabbo. Breakout sessions will include “Paid Family and Medical Leave: Change Is Coming” “Wage and Hour Mistakes,” “Harassment, Discrimination, and Why Employers Get Sued,” “Labor and Employment Law Update,” “How to Handle Requests for Reasonable Accommodations,” and “How to Conduct an Internal Investigation.” Speakers and panel-discussion participants will include Skoler Abbott attorneys and other leaders in human resources and employment law. A continental breakfast at 8:30 a.m. and luncheon are included with the conference, as well as time for networking and questions following the presentations. See the full agenda and register online at skoler-abbott.com/training-programs or call (413) 737-4753.

Social Work Conference

May 22: More than 350 professionals from throughout Western Mass. will gather on the campus of Western New England University from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the 37th annual Social Work Conference. The keynote speaker will be Jen Falcone, director of Businesses Against Human Trafficking. A survivor of child sexual abuse and trafficking as an adolescent, she will discuss her experiences and how utter devastation kick-started the healing that drives her life choices and professional work. Falcone will focus on launching a movement within the Springfield-area business community to address human trafficking. Frank Sacco will be honored with the Jim Quinn Human Service Award at the conference. In addition to a celebrated career nationally and internationally in the fields of social work and psychotherapy, Sacco has spent his life researching and authoring books and articles on bullying, teacher bullying, and building a successful anti-bullying structure within a school. He consulted for the FBI after the 1999 Columbine shooting as well as internet sexual exploitation and domestic violence. The day-long conference, sponsored by Western New England University’s Bachelor of Social Work Program, the Social Work Advisory Council, and the Office of Enrollment Management, will also feature more than 30 exhibitors from throughout the region. The conference fee is $165 and includes registration, luncheon, and six credit hours for full (100%) attendance. Lower student rates are also available. To register online, visit wne.edu/prodev, or call (413) 796-2173.

JA Inspire Career Exploration Fair

May 28: Junior Achievement of Western Massachusetts (JAWM), now celebrating its centennial anniversary, will host the JA Inspire Career Exploration Fair from 8 a.m. to noon at the MassMutual Center, 1277 Main St., Springfield. “We will host more than 500 students from seventh through 11th grades, who will have the opportunity to explore diverse career options at interactive booths featuring colleges, universities, trade schools, apprenticeship programs, companies, local law enforcement, and public-safety organizations from throughout Western Massachusetts,” said Jennifer Connolly, president of JAWM. The JA Inspire program provides students with the opportunity to learn about careers from industry representatives in time to begin planning for high-school coursework and better prepare themselves for life after graduation. The program consists of four in-class lessons, plus the career exploration fair, all designed to engage students and help them explore education and career pathways, showcase careers in Western Mass. with a focus on high-wage and high-demand industries, and connect students with industry representatives who can share career advice and offer interactive exhibits during the career fair. Exhibitor space is still available at no charge. Exhibitors will present interactive and engaging career stations, while providing volunteer mentors to staff the career stations throughout the event. To reserve a career station, contact Connolly at (413) 747-7670 or [email protected]. To learn more about the event, visit jawm.org/events or call (413) 747-7670.

Community Action Awards

June 13: Springfield Partners for Community Action will present a night of celebrating those in action within the community. The Community Action Awards will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Springfield Marriott Hotel and Conference Center. It will be a night of speakers, awards, handing out scholarships to Community Scholarship winners, and a silent auction for guests to participate in. Ticket purchase is available at communityactionevent.eventbrite.com. Springfield Partners for Community Action is the federally designated community action agency of Springfield whose mission is to provide resources that assist those in need to obtain economic stability and ultimately create a better way of life. For more information on the event, contact Natalia Arocho at (413) 263-6500, ext. 6516, or [email protected].

40 Under Forty Gala

June 20: BusinessWest will present its 13th annual 40 Under Forty Gala, a celebration of 40 young business and civic leaders in Western Mass. The lavish cocktail party, to begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, will feature butlered hors d’oeuvres, food stations, and entertainment — and, of course, the presentation of the class of 2019, which is profiled in the April 29 issue of BusinessWest and at businesswest.com. Also, the fifth Continued Excellence Award honoree will be announced. Tickets cost $75 per person; only standing-room tickets remain. For more information, call (413) 781-8600, ext. 100, or e-mail [email protected] PeoplesBank is the presenting sponsor, Health New England is the Continued Excellence Award sponsor, and WWLP-22 News is the media sponsor. Other sponsors include Baystate Health. the Isenberg School of Management, MP CPAs, Mercedes-Benz of Springfield, Live Nation, MGM Springfield, Comcast Business, and YPS of Greater Springfield (partner).

‘Thrive After 55’ Wellness Fair

June 21: State Sen. Eric Lesser announced that he will host the third annual “Thrive After 55” Wellness Fair in partnership with Health New England, Springfield College, and the Center for Human Development (CHD). This year’s fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Field House on the campus of Springfield College, 263 Alden St., Springfield. The fair is free and open to the public. With more than 70 local organizations ranging from health and fitness to nutrition and elder law, the annual fair will connect residents of the Greater Springfield area with information and resources to help them thrive. The event will feature several educational seminars which will highlight areas of interest for attendees, including estate planning and elder law, scam avoidance, and diet and nutrition. Heart Song Yoga Center of East Longmeadow will return for a third year with an interactive demonstration of chair yoga and movement. The program includes a boxed lunch, hundreds of raffle prizes, and access to information and experts. To RSVP, call Lesser’s office at (413) 526-6501 or visit senatorlesser.com/thrive.

Agenda

Paid Family and Medical Leave Seminar

April 18: Over the past few months, Massachusetts-based employers have been inundated with information about the upcoming Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave requirements. Unfortunately, this deluge of information has done little to answer employers’ pressing questions. To date, most of this information has been speculative or otherwise subject to change before implementation. In fact, the most helpful information thus far, the new Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave’s draft regulations, has only given an idea of what the program will probably look like. These draft regulations are just that: a draft. They are subject to change prior to the issuance of final regulations. The good news is there are some things we do know for sure, and there is still some time before employer obligations go into effect. Royal, P.C. will host a discussion of the steps employers can begin to take to prepare for the implementation of Paid Family and Medical Leave. The event will be held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at 270 Pleasant St., Northampton. The price is $30 per person, and registration is limited. For more information or to register, contact Heather Loges at (413) 586-2288 or [email protected].

Breakfast with the Easter Bunny

April 20: The Starting Gate at GreatHorse will host breakfast with the Easter Bunny the Saturday before Easter at 9 a.m. The facility is located at 128 Wilbraham Road, Hampden. An Easter breakfast buffet will feature buttermilk pancakes, scrambled eggs, pork sausage links, applewood bacon, golden breakfast potatoes, fresh fruit, mini danish, hot cross buns, bagels, coffee, tea, orange juice, and milk. The event will include Easter crafts and games, including an Easter egg hunt. This event is open to the public. The cost is $35, including tax and service charges. The event is free for children under age 1. Call (413) 566-5158 for reservations.

Springfield Art Stop

April 26: The Springfield Cultural Partnership (SCP) announced the return of Art Stop, a pop-up gallery/street festival hybrid, from 5 to 8 p.m. The SCP is partnering with venues downtown to open galleries in unexpected spaces simultaneously. Additionally, several existing Springfield art galleries along this year’s route will also participate as stops along the Art Stop. Between the galleries, which will have the typical artist talks and receptions, there will be street performances. Art Stop was designed to activate underutilized community spaces with colorful art, create economic opportunity for artists, and bring communities together. Galleries will all be located in downtown Springfield. Each individual gallery opening will have an reception with the artist on site to both sell and talk about their work. This year, the SCP has also partnered with several downtown restaurants that will offer a discount on food to Art Stop attendees who present their Art Stop ‘passport’ on April 26. The SCP, along with organizing the curation of art in the pop-up spaces, is hiring unique buskers to encourage attendees to walk from place to place. Guides will be strategically placed to guide attendees along the Art Stop route. The performers will showcase an array of dance, music, and entertainment. All locations are within a walkable area.

Daffodil 5K Run/Walk & 10K Run

April 28: Big Brothers Big Sisters will host the ninth annual Daffodil 5K Run/Walk & 10K Run. This festive, family-friendly event takes place at Kendrick Park in Amherst, with the race kicking off at 10 a.m.

Before the race, registrants can enjoy Esselon Coffee and a pre-race warmup with 50/50 Fitness/Nutrition. The post-race party for all registrants and volunteers will include a barbecue lunch provided by the Pub, music with DJ Matt Peterson, a bounce house, hula hooping with Hoop Joy, and balloon art. New this year, Crooked Stick Pops will bring their popsicles to the party, and there will be a tent sale of gently used children’s books curated by author and illustrator Diane deGroat. With a goal of raising $60,000 this year, the Daffodil Run is the largest annual fundraiser for CHD’s Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampshire County and provides vital funds for its mentoring programs. This year, it is partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampden County, and participants can decide which agency their fundraising will benefit. “The Daffodil Run is a favorite springtime event in our community, with 1,000 people joining together each year to have fun and support youth-mentoring programs,” said Jessie Cooley, director of CHD’s Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampshire County. “By partnering with our friends in Hampden County, we hope to create an even bigger impact and to match more young people in our region with mentors.” Runners and walkers can register online until Wednesday, April 24, and race-day registration is available beginning at 8 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to the top three overall finishers in each gender category, as well as top finishers for each age group and top fundraisers. Community members are invited to join the festivities at Kendrick Park and cheer on the runners and walkers along the route. For more information and to register for the race, visit daffodilrun2019.racewire.com.

DiGrigoli Educational Programs

April 29: For the first time in many years, Paul DiGrigoli, owner of DiGrigoli Salon and DiGrigoli School of Cosmetology in West Springfield and a national spokesperson and educator for the beauty industry, will offer his popular seminars to all local salon professionals and business owners. The all-day program at the Log Cabin in Holyoke will kick off at 10 a.m. with DiGrigoli’s most popular program, “Booked Solid,” based off his best-selling book in the beauty industry of the same name. Designed to help stylists, estheticians, nail techs, or anyone in the service industry to increase sales and retention, “Booked Solid” has inspired professionals across the country at major beauty shows, colleges, and businesses for more than 15 years. After lunch, the day will conclude with “How to Build a Healthy Salon or Business” from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. This leadership program, geared towards salon and beauty professionals, business owners, managers, or anyone in a leadership position, will use DiGrigoli’s more than 35 years of experience in the industry to educate on the best leadership practices, how to cultivate a healthy team or healthy business, and how to outperform the competition. This intensive workshop is being made possible through the sponsorship of Sullivan Beauty in New Hampshire. For more information and to purchase tickets, interested stylists and professionals should visit www.sullivanbeauty.com.

Elder-law and Estate-planning Series

May 6, 13, 20: Attorney Karen Jackson of Jackson Law, an elder-law and estate-planning firm, will teach a series of classes highlighting the latest developments in elder law and estate planning at Holyoke Community College (HCC). The six-hour course, called “Elder Law and Estate Planning: What You Need to Know,” will be presented on three consecutive Mondays from 6 to 8 p.m. Jackson will present comprehensive subject matter on what she calls “The Core Estate Plan,” in which she will explain core documents and provide stories and examples. She will also discuss “The Probate Court Process and Medicare Hot Topics” and “Community Care Programs and MassHealth Planning for Nursing-home Care.” In the first session, Jackson will explain each document in the core estate plan. She will discuss the problems that can occur when proper documents are not prepared before a loss of mental capacity or physical health or before sudden loss of life. The second session will address four areas: trusts, the probate court process, Medicare hot topics, and options for community care and home care. Jackson will provide pertinent information and details about each to assist attendees in planning now. In the third and final session, Jackson will introduce the various Medicaid programs that provide long-term skilled-nursing home care in Massachusetts and the financial assistance associated with each. While participants may attend only one session of their choosing, they must still pay the full course cost of $89. To register, call (413) 552-2500 or visit www.hcc.edu/bce.

40 Under Forty Gala

June 20: BusinessWest will present its 13th annual 40 Under Forty Gala, a celebration of 40 young business and civic leaders in Western Mass. The lavish cocktail party, to begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Log Cabin in Holyoke, will feature butlered hors d’oeuvres, food stations, and entertainment — and, of course, the presentation of the class of 2019, which will be profiled in the April 29 issue of BusinessWest and at businesswest.com. Also, the fifth Continued Excellence Award honoree will be announced. Tickets cost $75 per person, and tables of 10 are available. For more information, call (413) 781-8600, ext. 100, or e-mail [email protected] PeoplesBank is the presenting sponsor, Health New England is the Continued Excellence Award sponsor, and WWLP-22 News is the media sponsor. Other sponsors include the Isenberg School of Management, MP CPAs, Mercedes-Benz of Springfield, Live Nation, MGM Springfield, and YPS of Greater Springfield (partner).

‘Thrive After 55’ Wellness Fair

June 21: State Sen. Eric Lesser announced that he will host the third annual “Thrive After 55” Wellness Fair in partnership with Health New England, Springfield College, and the Center for Human Development (CHD). This year’s fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Field House on the campus of Springfield College, 263 Alden St., Springfield. The fair is free and open to the public. With more than 70 local organizations ranging from health and fitness to nutrition and elder law, the annual fair will connect residents of the Greater Springfield area with information and resources to help them thrive. The event will feature several educational seminars which will highlight areas of interest for attendees, including estate planning and elder law, scam avoidance, and diet and nutrition. Heart Song Yoga Center of East Longmeadow will return for a third year with an interactive demonstration of chair yoga and movement. The free program includes a boxed lunch, hundreds of raffle prizes, and access to information and experts. To RSVP, call Lesser’s office at (413) 526-6501 or visit senatorlesser.com/thrive.

Company Notebook

MBK Recognized as Regional Accounting Leader

HOLYOKE — Accounting Today, a leading publication in the certified public accounting industry, has named Meyers Brothers Kalicka, P.C. a regional leader in its top-100 listing in the March issue. Accounting Today’s annual ranking surveys the largest practices in both tax and accounting in 10 major geographic regions across the country. It employs a host of benchmarking data to evaluate the firms’ growth strategies, service areas, and specific client niches. MBK was recognized as a top firm in the New England region. “MBK is dedicated to our belief in the power and potential of Western Massachusetts,” said Managing Partner James Barrett. “We are very proud to have this local commitment recognized on a national level. Our staff works very hard to provide excellent service to our clients as well as resources and information to business owners and decision makers in our marketplace.”

Western New England Wins National Marketing Awards

SPRINGFIELD — Western New England University (WNEU) was named among the top institutions in the nation in the 2018 Collegiate Advertising Awards and the 34th annual Education Advertising Awards, two programs designed to recognize higher-education organizations for excellence in communications, marketing, advertising, and promotion of their schools. Western New England University and its creative partner, Spark451, received a total of four Gold awards. The university’s centennial logo, created to commemorate 100 years, claimed gold in both competitions. The recently launched WNE: The Magazine of Western New England University claimed gold in the Collegiate Advertising Awards competition. The biannual publication explores stories drawn from a cross section of the university, highlighting faculty research, campus happenings, and alumni achievements. Meanwhile, the “What’s New at WNE?” brochure took home top honors in the brochure category. The annual publication shines the spotlight on the latest university developments, including new facilities, academic programs, and faculty and student accomplishments. 

Smith & Wesson Donates Proceeds from Game Dinner to Pioneer Valley USO

SPRINGFIELD — Smith & Wesson Corp. announced it has contributed more than $32,000 to the Pioneer Valley USO. Proceeds raised from the company’s annual game dinner have benefited the Pioneer Valley USO and its programs supporting American military personnel and their families for more than a decade. Armed-forces members and families access the USO for social, recreational, educational, and entertainment programs and services. At the annual event, Smith & Wesson game dinner attendees enjoy a variety of wild game dishes prepared by a team of dedicated volunteers. One of the most popular events of its kind, the dinner hosts nearly 500 guests, and this year featured menu items including pheasant, elk, bear, boar, moose, and venison. Led by Chef Norm Boucher from Chicopee Comprehensive High School’s culinary department, volunteers created dishes like antelope meatballs marinara, southern-style pulled boar, pot roast of Maine black bear, and wild bird pot pie. In addition to the food-preparation team, Smith & Wesson volunteers donated more than 500 personal hours to make the event a success. The game meat was donated by hunters affiliated with Smith & Wesson, Foggy Mountain Guide Service, and Linx Wildlife Management, among others. This year’s event included a limited number of sponsorships, giving local businesses the opportunity to show their support. Big-game sponsor Thorn Industries of Three Rivers, as well as other area businesses, provided additional support for the USO.

Governor Celebrates Opening of New Physical Sciences Building at UMass Amherst

AMHERST — Gov. Charlie Baker recently celebrated the opening of the new Physical Sciences Building (PSB) at UMass Amherst, a facility funded by the state that fosters and expands cutting-edge collaborative learning and research at the Commonwealth’s flagship campus. “We were pleased to invest in the new Physical Sciences Building, which will serve as a hub for the natural sciences at UMass Amherst,” Baker said. “The facility’s expansion will help foster new research and career opportunities, which will help support the STEM workforce pipeline here in Massachusetts.” The 95,000-square-foot PSB opened this academic year after three years of construction and incorporates the reconstructed West Experiment Station, a 19th-century agricultural soils research laboratory and one of the university’s most historic buildings. Funding for the $101.8 million project included $85 million from the state and $16.8 million financed by the campus through the UMass Building Authority. The PSB provides offices, specialized laboratories, and approximately 130 laboratory benches for the Physics and Chemistry departments. The laboratories are constructed in a layout that can be reconfigured many times during the life of the building. Among other fields, the PSB supports scientific discovery in material science, condensed matter and nuclear physics, and organic chemistry. The faculty hosted in these facilities have collectively been awarded $127 million in grants and are working on the forefront of science.

Franklin First Federal Credit Union Honored with Community Hero Award

SPRINGFIELD — Franklin First Federal Credit Union was honored as a Community Hero at the Credit Union Heroes and Community Bank Heroes Awards Gala on March 28, hosted at MGM Springfield by American Business Media, publisher of Banking New England and Centerpoint magazines. Wolf and Co., one of the nation’s leading tax, audit, and CPA firms, was the gala’s presenting sponsor. The gala recognized 18 community banks and credit unions from across New England for their creation of community partnerships and going beyond the call to aid their community. Franklin First was recognized for its partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County through the creation of a financial carnival designed to educate youth in the community about identifying, earning, and spending money. Franklin First organized several financial carnivals to coincide with mentoring sessions with local ‘bigs’ (Age 16-18) and ‘littles’ (ages 8-11) as a fun, educational alternative to their normal mentoring sessions. The carnivals involved a series of games designed to identify currency, separate wants from needs, recognize expenses, and experience financial gains and losses, all while tracking their earnings and expenses in a savings register to save up for a fun prize at the end of the night. Franklin First received Silver in the category of credit unions with less than $500 million in assets.

PeoplesBank Named Second-Fastest-Growing Bank In Massachusetts

HOLYOKE — The Boston Business Journal published its list of the fastest-growing banks in Massachusetts, and, following its acquisition of First National Bank of Suffield, PeoplesBank ranked second on the list. “About 50% of our growth came from the merger,” said Brian Canina, chief financial officer of PeoplesBank. “But the untold story is that the rest of that growth was organic. We attribute our organic growth to our mutual charter. We do not have to divert earnings to shareholders, so we can reinvest in our organization and the communities we serve. That means improved technology, better products and services — including rates and terms — as well as a level of investment in the community that is unmatched by our competitors.”

Bay Path Receives Truth Initiative Grant, Pledges to Go Tobacco-free

LONGMEADOW — Bay Path University recently announced it is one of 48 colleges and universities to be awarded a grant from Truth Initiative to adopt a 100% tobacco-free or smoke-free campus policy. The effort is part of a national movement among students, faculty, and administrators to address smoking and tobacco use at college campuses throughout the U.S. Ninety-nine percent of all smokers start smoking before the age of 26, making college campuses a critical part in the fight against youth tobacco use. Since 2015, the Truth Initiative Tobacco-Free College Program, in partnership with CVS Health, has awarded more than $1.8 million in funding to 154 colleges and universities to prevent young adults from starting tobacco use, help tobacco smokers quit, and reduce everyone’s exposure to secondhand smoke. Bay Path University’s efforts are part of a growing trend to clean the air on campuses. Currently, more than 2,342 higher-education institutions in the U.S. have gone smoke- or tobacco-free.

Springfield College Center for Excellence in Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship Wins Grant

SPRINGFIELD — The Springfield College Center for Excellence in Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship has been awarded a $265,000 grant from the Davis Educational Foundation to assist in the creation of faculty-development opportunities focused on the implementation of real-time assessment procedures to help increase and maintain student academic success. The grant will allow the center to fund faculty from across departments and schools to engage in workshops on assessment, implement those strategies into their courses, and use the assessment data to evaluate program-learning outcomes. The goals are to improve the timelines of interventions when students are not meeting learning objectives and to move the class forward when all students are meeting those objectives. The center will coordinate the training and provide faculty with the ability to engage in scholarship around the development of these assessment procedures.

Agenda

STCC Majors and Career Fair

April 3: Springfield Technical Community College will host a Majors and Career Fair for students, local vocational high schools, and community agencies interested in exploring opportunities in the biomedical, architectural, civil and mechanical engineering, optics and photonics, social work, landscape and design, digital media, graphic communications, IT security, and many other STEM fields. The Majors and Career Fair will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Scibelli Hall Gymnasium in Building 2. This event is a collaboration among the Career Development Center, the HSI-STEM Grant, and the Perkins Grant. Representatives from academic majors, career fields, and local employers will be on hand. With a goal of raising awareness about STEM majors and careers, the fair will give attendees an opportunity to speak with employers about potential opportunities in their field. For more information, contact Felicia Griffin-Fennell at [email protected] or (413) 755-4819.

EANE Leadership Conference

April 4: The Employers Assoc. of the NorthEast (EANE) will stage its annual Leadership Conference on Thursday, April 4 at the Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place with a focus on measuring success while motivating and inspiring one’s team to improve performance. The program will feature Jim McPartlin, vice president of Leadership Development for Forbes Travel Guide. McPartlin’s keynote will challenge attendees to bring integrity to their leadership responsibilities, even when times get tough. A second keynote will be presented by Tim Hebert, a perennial entrepreneur, innovator, author, speaker, and adventurer. Hebert will ignite the leadership spark in attendees in a keynote focused on the choices of leadership and techniques to help live life by design, not by default. Between keynote presentations, conference attendees will have access to dozens of breakout session topics ranging from performance management to diversity and inclusion, to perfecting ‘C-suite speak,’ and more. The cost for the program is $360 per person with discounts for three or more. Register at www.eane.org/leadership-2019 or by calling (877) 662-6444. The program will offer 5.75 credits from the HR Certification Institute and SHRM.

Riverside Industries Silent & Live Auction

April 5: Riverside Industries’ 15th annual Silent & Live Auction, featuring more than 250 silent-auction items and a live auction full of experiences from the Valley and beyond, will be held at One Cottage St. in Easthampton from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Attendees can expect plenty of food, casual attire, and a cash bar. Tickets cost $30 in advance. Securely register online at rsi.org. The presenting sponsor is bankESB; the associate sponsor is Harvard Pilgrim; the table sponsors are Finck & Perras Insurance Agency and Mutual of America; and the collaborator sponsors are A-Z Storage & Properties, Helping Hand Society, SBI Benefits Consulting Group, Ruth and Spencer Timm, Whittlesey & Hadley P.C., and Williston Northampton School.

‘What Is Spiritual Direction?’

April 6: Elms College will host a day of reflection titled “What Is Spiritual Direction? Is It for Me?” from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in Decice Hall at the Marian Center, located at 1365 Northampton St. in Holyoke. The event will include an introduction to what spiritual direction is (and what it is not), some exploration of different ways to be with God in prayer, reflection on each participant’s own sacred story, discussion of several approaches to spiritual direction, and time for both shared and personal prayer. Virginia Collins-English, a certified spiritual director, retreat director, writer, and psychotherapist, will lead the day of reflection. All are welcome, including those who are ‘spiritual but not religious,’ those who feel marginalized by the church, and those of all faiths. Sponsored by the Religious Studies Department and the Institute for Theology and Pastoral Studies at Elms, this event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, call (413) 265-2575 or e-mail [email protected] Attendees should bring a bag lunch. Beverages and dessert will be provided.

‘Growing Up WILD’

April 13: The School of Graduate and Professional Studies at Elms College, in partnership with Berkshire Community College and 1Berkshire, will host an early-childhood-education workshop from 8:30 a.m. to noon in the cafeteria at Berkshire Community College. The workshop, titled “A Glimpse at Growing Up WILD,” is free and open to the public. In this extensive training for educators run through MassWildlife, Jane McCarry, academic coordinator and advisor for the Early Care and Education program at Elms, and also a trained Growing Up WILD facilitator, will present two of the program’s activities: “Seed Need” and “Lunch for a Bear.” These hands-on activities encourage participants to move, learn to collect data, and make science-based observations, all at a preschool level. Participants in this workshop will take part in these activities and learn how to use them in childcare settings. The primary intended audience includes people who are already working in early education at preschools or in group care who are required to obtain 20 hours of training per year, but the workshop is also open to BCC students currently earning their associate degrees in early education or a related field, prospective early-childhood-education students, and any community members who are interested in learning about Growing Up WILD. Upon completion of the training, participants will receive a certificate of attendance confirming they have successfully completed two hours of training in Core Competency Area 5: Learning Environments and Implementing Curriculum. The total participants are limited to 50. For more information or to register, e-mail Kelly Zieba at [email protected]

Paid Family and Medical Leave Seminar

April 18: Over the past few months, Massachusetts-based employers have been inundated with information about the upcoming Massachusetts Paid Family and Medical Leave requirements. Unfortunately, this deluge of information has done little to answer employers’ pressing questions. To date, most of this information has been speculative or otherwise subject to change before implementation. In fact, the most helpful information thus far, the new Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave’s draft regulations, has only given an idea of what the program will probably look like. These draft regulations are just that: a draft. They are subject to change prior to the issuance of final regulations. The good news is there are some things we do know for sure, and there is still some time before employer obligations go into effect. Royal, P.C. will host a discussion of the steps employers can begin to take to prepare for the implementation of Paid Family and Medical Leave. The event will be held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at 270 Pleasant St., Northampton. The price is $30 per person, and registration is limited. For more information or to register, contact Heather Loges at (413) 586-2288 or [email protected]

Springfield Art Stop

April 26: The Springfield Cultural Partnership (SCP) announced the return of Art Stop, a pop-up gallery/street festival hybrid, from 5 to 8 p.m. The SCP is partnering with venues downtown to open galleries in unexpected spaces simultaneously. Additionally, several existing Springfield art galleries along this year’s route will also participate as stops along the Art Stop. Between the galleries, which will have the typical artist talks and receptions, there will be street performances. Art Stop was designed to activate underutilized community spaces with colorful art, create economic opportunity for artists, and bring communities together. Galleries will all be located in downtown Springfield. Each individual gallery opening will have an reception with the artist on site to both sell and talk about their work. This year, the SCP has also partnered with several downtown restaurants that will offer a discount on food to Art Stop attendees who present their Art Stop ‘passport’ on April 26. The SCP, along with organizing the curation of art in the pop-up spaces, is hiring unique buskers to encourage attendees to walk from place to place. Guides will be strategically placed to guide attendees along the Art Stop route. The performers will showcase an array of dance, music, and entertainment. All locations are within a walkable area.

DiGrigoli Educational Programs

April 29: For the first time in many years, Paul DiGrigoli, owner of DiGrigoli Salon and DiGrigoli School of Cosmetology in West Springfield and a national spokesperson and educator for the beauty industry, will offer his popular seminars to all local salon professionals and business owners. The all-day program at the Log Cabin in Holyoke will kick off at 10 a.m. with DiGrigoli’s most popular program, “Booked Solid,” based off his best-selling book in the beauty industry of the same name. Designed to help stylists, estheticians, nail techs, or anyone in the service industry to increase sales and retention, “Booked Solid” has inspired professionals across the country at major beauty shows, colleges, and businesses for more than 15 years. After lunch, the day will conclude with “How to Build a Healthy Salon or Business” from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. This leadership program, geared towards salon and beauty professionals, business owners, managers, or anyone in a leadership position, will use DiGrigoli’s more than 35 years of experience in the industry to educate on the best leadership practices, how to cultivate a healthy team or healthy business, and how to outperform the competition. This intensive workshop is being made possible through the sponsorship of Sullivan Beauty in New Hampshire. For more information and to purchase tickets, interested stylists and professionals should visit www.sullivanbeauty.com.

Chamber Corners

1BERKSHIRE

www.1berkshire.com

(413) 499-1600

• April 24: Good News Business Salute, 7:30-9 a.m. Throughout the year, 1Berkshire selects businesses and organizations to recognize at events called Good News Business Salutes. These may honor an expansion, creation of new jobs, a significant milestone or anniversary, the unveiling of a new program, or a substantial new commitment to the community. The Esther Quinn Award will be given out at this event to an actively involved community member. Cost: $35 for members; $50 for non-members. Register at bit.ly/2H71NS6.

AMHERST AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.amherstarea.com

(413) 253-0700

• April 10: April After 5 – Battle of the Admins, 5-7 p.m., hosted by PinZ at the Hampshire Mall. In celebration of Administrative Professionals Day, offices will compete in fun team-building events to foster a sense of community and camaraderie among staff and show them how much you appreciate their hard work. Cornhole, ping-pong, and axe throwing are just a few of the fun events the Hampshire Mall has prepared. Looking to meet new people? We will pair you up with someone you don’t know to network.

• April 17: Amherst Area Economic Development Panel, 4-6 p.m., hosted by UMass Old Chapel. A presentation of the state of economic development in Amherst and a panel discussion of the community’s strategic advantage as well as a vision for the future of economic development in the Amherst area.

• April 19-28: Daffodil Days. In celebration of spring, the Amherst downtown will be adorned with sprouting daffodils and artistic storefront windows. Many restaurants, cafés, and shops will have special spring offerings and sales.

FRANKLIN COUNTY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.franklincc.org

(413) 773-5463

• April 18: Business After Hours, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Polish American Citizens Club, 46 South Main St., South Deerfield. Sponsored by Polish National Credit Union. A networking event featuring a cash bar and an all-Polish menu by Hamel’s Catering. Register at franklincc.org or by e-mailing [email protected]

• April 26: Monthly Chamber Breakfast Series, 7:30-9 a.m., hosted by Terrazza Restaurant. Sponsored by the Cooley Dickinson VNA & Hospice. Full breakfast will be served during the program, featuring a panel celebrating the contribution of today’s immigrants. Speakers include Laurie Millman, executive director for the Center for New Americans; Abas Cecunjanin, owner of Terrazza Restaurant; Arjen Vriend, owner of Pioneer Gardens Inc.; and Geetu Shokeen, owner of Montague Dental Arts. Register at franklincc.org or by e-mailing [email protected]

GREATER CHICOPEE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.chicopeechamber.org

(413) 594-2101

• April 5: Shining Stars Gala, 6-10 p.m., hosted by Castle of Knights, Chicopee. Presented by Westfield Bank. Sponsored by PeoplesBank, Polish National Credit Union, Health New England, BusinessWest, Siddall & Siddall, P.C., the Arbors Kids, N. Riley Construction, the Chicopee Herald, and Hampton Inn of Chicopee. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

• April 17: Salute Breakfast, 7:15-9 a.m., hosted by Willits-Hallowell Center. Sponsored by Westfield Bank, Holyoke Medical Center, N. Riley Construction Inc., Polish National Credit Union, USI Insurance Services, Spherion Staffing Services, and PeoplesBank. Marketing for small business chief greeter: Chris Thompson of CT Enterprises. Keynote speaker: Alfonso Santaniello of Creative Strategy Agency. Cost: $25 for members, $30 for non-members. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

• April 25: Business After Hours – Happy Hour After Hours, 4:30-6:30 p.m., hosted by Exchange St. Station. Come after work and relax and enjoy a drink and some light refreshments. Don’t forget your business cards. Cost: $10 for member, $15 for non-members. Sign up online at chicopeechamber.org/events.

GREATER EASTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.easthamptonchamber.org

(413) 527-9414

• April 3: Networking by Night, 5-9 p.m., hosted by the Springfield Thunderbirds at the MassMutual Center. Networking 5-7 p.m., followed by a game courtesy of the Thunderbirds. This event is free to members and their families. Pre-registration is required, as there will be no tickets available at the door. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

• April 25: Food 4 Thought Lunch & Learn, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., hosted by Mill 180 Park, 180 Pleasant St., Easthampton. Robin Kline, director of Volunteer & Guest Services at Cooley Dickinson Health Care, will facilitate a program about customer Service. If you think it’s no big deal, think again. This seemingly innocuous little detail can make or break an organization. A box lunch is included with registration. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for future members. For more information and to register, visit www.easthamptonchamber.org or call the chamber at (413) 527-9414.

GREATER NORTHAMPTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.northamptonchamber.com

(413) 584-1900

• April 2: Workshop: “Excel Tips & Tricks, Part 2,” 9-11 a.m., hosted by Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. This class will present a series of tips and shortcuts that will help attendees work more efficiently and complete more complex tasks with Microsoft Excel. Learn how to assign range names to groups of cells and how to use range names in formulas and functions. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for non-members.

• April 3: April Arrive @ 5, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Danco, 10 West St., West Hatfield. A networking event sponsored by Northeast Solar, NEPR, Health New England, and MassHire Franklin Hampshire Workforce Board. Cost: $10 for members.

• April 23: Workshop: CyberSafe, 9 a.m. to noon, hosted by Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. CyberSafe is a three-hour workshop for non-technical users that focuses on using technology without compromising personal or organizational security. Students will learn the skills they need to protect digital data on computers, networks, mobile devices, and the internet. They will learn how to identify many of the common risks involved in using technology, such as phishing, spoofing, malware, and social engineering, and then learn how to protect themselves and their organizations from those risks. Cost: $50 for members, $60 for non-members.

• May 1: May Arrive @ 5, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Emerson Way, Northampton. A networking event sponsored by Gove Law Office, Keiter Builders, and Kuhn Riddle Architects. Cost: $10 for members.

• May 14: Workshop: “Microsoft Word Tips,” 9-11 a.m., hosted by the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. This workshop contains a variety of quick tips and tricks in Microsoft Word that will save hours of time. Attendees will learn to add buttons to the Quick Access Toolbar; shortcuts for selecting words, sentences, and paragraphs; and how (and why) to display non-printing characters in a document. Practice using the Format Painter to copy formatting and fix problems with numbered and bulleted lists. Learn to create AutoCorrect entries to correct common typos, and AutoText entries and Quick Parts to easily enter frequently used text. Cost: $25 for members, $35 for non-members.

May 28: Workshop: “Upgrading to Office 365,” 9-11 a.m., hosted by the Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce, 99 Pleasant St., Northampton. Presented by Pioneer Training. Cost: $35 for members, $45 for non-members.

GREATER WESTFIELD CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.westfieldbiz.org

(413) 568-1618

• April 1: Mayor’s Coffee Hour, 8-9 a.m, hosted by Westfield Sportsman’s Club, 98 Furrowtown Road, Westfield. Join us for coffee with Westfield Mayor Brian Sullivan. The event is free and open to the public. To register, visit www.westfieldbiz.org/events or call (413) 568-1618 so we may give our host a proper head count.

• April 8: After 5 Connections, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Armbrook Village, 551 North Road, Westfield. Refreshments will be served, and a 50/50 raffle will benefit the chamber scholarship fund. Bring your business cards and make connections. Cost: free for members, $15 for non-members (cash or credit paid at the door). Sign up online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

• April 12: Legislative Luncheon, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., hosted by Tekoa Country Club, 459 Russell Road, Westfield. Tony Cignoli of A.L. Cignoli Co. will be moderating a panel of legislators at our annual Legislative Luncheon. Don’t miss this opportunity for your voice to be heard on issues or budget items that affect your business or employees. Invited panelists include state Sens. Don Humason and Adam Hinds, and state Reps. Natalie Blais, Nicholas Boldyga, Smitty Pignatelli, Lindsay Sabadosa, and John Velis. Cost: $35 for members, $50 for non-members. Sign up online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For sponsorships or more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

• April 25: Westfield Education to Business Alliance High School Career Fair, 8-10:30 a.m., hosted by Westfield State University, Woodward Center, 395 Western Ave., Westfield. Don’t miss the chance to help shape the future through workforce development in the community. Create connections for your business and the next generation of your workforce by inspiring Westfield High School and Westfield Technical Academy students with career and college exploration. More than 500 students will be in attendance. There is no charge to be a vendor. Register online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For sponsorships or more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

• April 30: Marketplace Sip & Shop, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce and the Southwick Economic Development Committee at the Ranch Golf Club, 65 Sunnyside Road, Southwick. Join more than 40 local merchants while sipping your way through the market. Refreshments and cash bar available. This event is free and open to the public. Vendor cost: $50 if bringing a table, $75 if you would like us to provide the table, or if you would like floor space. Vendor sign-up and additional details available online at www.westfieldbiz.org/events. For sponsorships or more information, call the chamber at (413) 568-1618.

SOUTH HADLEY & GRANBY CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.shgchamber.com

(413) 532-6451

• April 6: Mohegan Sun Bus Trip, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Hop on King Ward’s 40-person bus for a day of fun at one of the world’s finest casinos. Pickup and dropoff at the Chicopee Home Depot parking lot at 9 a.m. Cost: $50 per person, which includes bus fare, $15 food voucher, and $15 gambling voucher. Call Steven Laplante at (413) 246-4911 for more information, or e-mail [email protected] to reserve seating.

• April 17: Business After 5, 5-7 p.m., hosted by the Thirsty Mind, located in South Hadley’s Village Commons, across the street from Mount Holyoke College. Cost: $10 for members, $15 for non-members. RSVP and direct questions to [email protected], and mail a check, payable to the South Hadley & Granby Chamber of Commerce, to 2 Lyman St., South Hadley, MA 01075.

SPRINGFIELD REGIONAL CHAMBER

www.springfieldregionalchamber.com

(413) 787-1555

• April 3: Mayor’s Forum, 7:15-9 a.m., hosted by Delaney House, One Country Club Road, Holyoke. Presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. Featuring Mayor Domenic Sarno of Springfield, Mayor Nicole LaChapelle of Easthampton, and Mayor William Sapelli of Agawam. Cost: $30 for members ($40 at the door), $35 for non-members ($45 at the door).

• April 11: Beacon Hill Summit, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., sponsored by Baystate Health and Comcast. A day at the State House in Boston hosted by state Sen. James Welch and state Rep. Carlos Gonzalez. An opportunity to spend a day with members of the Baker-Polito administration. Cost: $180 for members, $225 for non-members, which includes lunch and reception.

• April 11: Professional Women’s Chamber Tabletop Showcase, 5-8 p.m., hosted by Carriage House, Storrowton Village, 1305 Memorial Ave., West Springfield. Cost: $40 admission includes food and one drink; $150 for exhibitor table. Reservations for all chamber events may be made by visiting www.springfieldregionalchamber.com, e-mailing [email protected], or calling (413) 755-1310.

WEST OF THE RIVER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

www.ourwrc.com

(413) 426-3880

• April 3: Wicked Wednesday, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Carrabba’s Italian Grill, West Springfield. Wicked Wednesdays are monthly social events, hosted by various businesses and restaurants, that bring members and non-members together to network in a laid-back atmosphere. For more information about this event, call the chamber office at (413) 426-3880, or register at www.westoftheriverchamber.com.

YOUNG PROFESSIONAL SOCIETY OF GREATER SPRINGFIELD

springfieldyps.com

• April 19: April Third Thursday featuring area graduate schools, 5-7 p.m., hosted by Samuel’s at the Hall of Fame. Join us for our monthly Third Thursday while learning about graduate schools from representatives from various area colleges and universities. Cost: free for members, $10 for non-members. Learn more at springfieldyps.com.