Our Towns

 The Southern Berkshire region is comprised of nine towns, including several smaller villages. A Board of Selectmen governs the towns and open meetings are held year-round with residents encouraged to actively attend and participate. Town meetings are convened each spring giving residents a chance to voice opinions and vote on key issues. 

Each town has a voluntary fire department, along with first responders, to respond to emergency calls. Neighborhoods are provided with a safe and secure environment by local police departments. Several towns maintain public libraries in wonderfully restored historic buildings. The area code in the Berkshires is 413. In an emergency, dial 911.

Alford

Town Hall – 5 Main Street, Alford, MA  01230
413-528-4536
Square Miles 11.56
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 393

School District – Southern Berkshire Regional School District

Alford

Alford was settled in 1756 as a farming community and incorporated in 1775. Originally part of Great Barrington, the village retains a look and feel of another century. Main Street has a beautiful historic church, town hall and a one-room schoolhouse, which now houses the town offices. Although there has been a steady development of second homes in Alford, the town has been successful controlling development. There are many farms and fishing holes along the Alford Brook, one of the best fishing streams in the region.

Egremont

Town Hall – 171 Egremont Plain Road, Route 71, North Egremont
413-528-0182
Square Miles 41.061
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 1348
Property Tax Rate in 2006 $6.77 per $1000 of valuation
School District – Southern Berkshire Regional School District

Baldwin Hill

North and South Egremont are two beautiful and distinct villages that share a common government. They were settled by the Dutch in 1722 and incorporated in 1775 and have worked hard since the 1930s to maintain the historic gentility and quiet country atmosphere. The town is a perfect refuge for city dwellers as well as its fortunate full time population. The National Park Service owns the Jug End protective corridor for the Appalachian Trail in Egremont.


Great Barrington

Town Hall – 334 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA  01230
413-528-1619
Square Miles 48.184
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 7434
Property Tax Rate in 2008: $11.28 per $1000 of valuation

School District –Berkshire Hills Regional School District                                                                                                                   

Great Barrington was founded in 1766 and is the Southern Berkshires’ largest town and commercial hub. Its Main Street was the first in the United States to have electric lights. The town is the site of the first armed resistance against the British, two years before the Revolutionary War, and is the site of the first freed slave. The vibrant downtown, with its tree-lined streets and mid-19th century charm, is easily walkable and infinitely enjoyable. The shopping experience can include galleries, culture, fine restaurants, boutiques and historic sites and landmarks. Great Barrington’s year-round residents include a mix of natives, transplants from metropolitan areas and students from nearby private schools.

Fairview Hospital in Great Barrington is a major employer in the south Berkshire area, providing positions in nursing, physician, other clinical areas, general staff, and management and administrative jobs to residents of the area and those who are moving to the region. As a major affiliate of Berkshire Health Systems, Fairview Hospital has close connections to Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield, the Berkshire Visiting Nurse Association and a host of Long-Term Care facilities.

The town also includes the village of Housatonic to the north, a former thriving mill town that is now home to many unique art galleries and other creative businesses and its own public library.

Monterey

Town Hall – 435 Main Road, Monterey, MA  01245
413-528-2678
Square Miles 26.499
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 954
School District: Southern Berkshire Regional School District

Monterey

Monterey, or “Green Woods” as it was then called, was established in 1735 to help develop a wilderness trail, and was the original settlement of Tyringham. In 1847, the southern portion of Tyringham became Monterey, a separate town named after one of Zachary Taylor’s victorious battles in Mexico. Originally an industrial center with factories, mills and a thriving fur industry, Monterey metamorphosed before the Civil War into a summer resort town and today has a creative, independent, artistic flair.

Mount Washington

Town Hall – 118 East Street, Mount Washington, MA  01258
413-528-2839
Square Miles 22.223
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 133
School District – Southern Berkshire Regional School District

Bash Bish Falls

Mount Washington was, until recently, the least populated town in Massachusetts and today some believe it is the oldest town in Berkshire County, dating back to 1692. It is mostly state forest that includes Bash Bish Falls, the highest waterfall in Massachusetts. The 2,600 foot high Mount Everett, the highest mountain in the Southern Berkshire region, offers spectacular views of three states from its summit, which is crossed by the Appalachian Trail. Today Mount Washington is prized for its privacy and wild beauty.

New Marlborough

Town Hall – 807 Mill River-Southfield Road, Mill River, MA  01244
413-229-8116
Square Miles 47.20
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 1514
School District: Southern Berkshire Regional School District

New Marlborough

New Marlborough is a series of hills and valleys lying between the Housatonic Valley to the west and the Farmington Valley to the east. In the 19th century, it prospered from its cider and gristmills, paper mills, limekiln and box factory along the Konkapot River. This town consists of five villages – Clayton, Hartsville, Mill River, New Marlborough and Southfield with their historic village centers, rolling landscapes, stone walls and picturesque farms.

Otis

Town Hall – 1 North Main Road, Otis, MA  01253
413-269-0101
Square Miles 35.839
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 1383
School District – Farming River School District (elementary). School choice for upper grades

Otis

Otis is the site of the largest recreational body of water in Massachusetts, the Otis Reservoir. The nearby Farmington River offers fine trout fishing. Otis was formed from combining two 18th century settlements, Loudon and Bethlehem, and in the 19th century was busy with various mills, lumbering and a pig iron forge. Today tourists are drawn to the area to enjoy boating, swimming and fishing. The Post Office still uses the original bronze post boxes of the 19th century.

Sandisfield

Town Hall – 66 Sandisfield Road, Sandisfield, MA  01255
413-258-4711
Square Miles 52.319
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 823
School District – Farming River School District (elementary). School choice for upper grades

Sandisfield

Sandisfield was settled in 1736 and incorporated in 1762, named after the prominent Sandys family who were related to Sir Winston Churchill. It was a bustling town in the 18th century as part of the Hartford to Albany stage line growing to nearly 2,000 residents. In the 19th century, the busy town had many small factories and annually produced 300,000 pounds of cheese and was the largest exporter of maple syrup in the state. When a proposed railroad bypassed the town, its population declined to the present-day number of just over 800 residents. It is rural, densely forested, and a favorite of summer residents and visitors.

Sheffield

Town Hall – 21 Depot Street, Sheffield, MA  01257
413-229-8752
Square Miles 52.737
Population (2004 Census Estimate) 3360
School District – Southern Berkshire Regional School District

Sheffield

Sheffield was settled in 1725 by Matthew Noble and incorporated in 1773 making it the first town incorporated in Berkshire County. The township was purchased from the Stockbridge Indians and Chief Konkapot for 460 pounds, three barrels of cider and thirty quarts of rum. The town developed rapidly, giving rise to gristmills, sawmills, plaster and paper mills, forges, tanneries, smithies, limekilns and shops for making clothing, furniture, wagons and harnesses. Today Sheffield is the leading agricultural town in the county with large and beautiful dairy and poultry farms.
Sheffield also includes the village of Ashley Falls, where the oldest existing home in the Berkshires, the Colonel John Ashley House (1735), and an important marble quarry that supplied marble for the Boston Customs House and the New York City courthouse are located.
In addition to the towns profiled above, we encourage you to visit member businesses located in the following nearby towns: Canaan, Lakeville and Sharon, CT and Albany, Austerlitz, Chatham, Copake, Ghent, Hillsdale and Millerton, NY.

Located amidst the beautiful scenery and cultural attractions of the Berkshires, Fairview Hospital is a fully accredited 24-bed acute care facility located in Great Barrington. Fairview serves residents of and visitors to southern Berkshire, northwestern Connecticut and Columbia County, New York with a wide variety of high quality healthcare services, including Aquatic Physical Therapy; Cardiac Care; Community Health Information; Emergency Services; Endoscopy; Maternal Child Health; Nutrition; Occupational Therapy; Pulmonary Services, Asthma Relief; Rehabilitation and Surgical Services.

The Southern Berkshire communities are fortunate to have many caring individuals as residents, which is evidenced by the number of civic and charitable organizations that exist to help their neighbors, such as the Great Barrington Rotary Club and the Sheffield Kiwanis.

                       Other Charitable Organizations

Berkshire United Way (413) 528-6214 

Berkshire Community Action Council (413) 528-1947
(locally called Community Services) - offering community services, heat assistance and food pantry.

Construct, Inc. (413) 528-1985
Working with homeless and transient housing for both men and women.

The Guthrie Center (413) 528-1955
An outreach program founded by folksinger Arlo Guthrie

Breaking Bread Kitchen - a group of volunteers from the community who serve a hot meal to anyone who stops in to the St. Peter’s Parish Center on Thursday evenings.

Railroad Street Youth Project (413) 528-5837
Offering healthy opportunities for young people

SPONSOR

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

Upcoming Events

  • Construction UpdateClick here for details

  • Seminar: Easy Ways to Earn It...Easy Ways to Lose It, Friday, October 24, 10am - 12pm, Berkshire Community College Click here for details
  • Business After Hours,Thursday, November 13, 5:30-7:30pm Community Access to the Arts (CATA)

 

     


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