Monday, May 16, 2011

3rd.Thursdays returns May 19th to Downtown Pittsfield!

The streets and sidewalks of downtown Pittsfield will fill with live music, street performers, great shopping, outdoor dining, new art, and thousands of people as 3rd.Thursdays returns on Thursday, May 19 for its fifth year. The award-winning free monthly downtown after-hours event attracts as many as 15,000 people to downtown Pittsfield on the third Thursday of each month between May and October, from 5pm to 8pm and beyond.
The theme of May’s 3rd.Thursdays is Celebrating Youth, and there will be youth performances, art exhibits and events galore. North Street will be closed to traffic from Park Square to Linden Street between 4:30pm to 8:30pm, and the first half block of Union Street will be closed beginning at 2:30pm.

“The City of Pittsfield is thrilled to present the fifth year of 3rd.Thursdays, bringing tens of thousands of people back to our revitalized downtown to enjoy free music & entertainment, and to visit the wonderful downtown shops, restaurants, and cultural hotspots, both new and old. I love seeing everyone in our community out and about on 3rd.Thursdays,” noted Mayor James M. Ruberto.  3rd.Thursdays is organized by the City of Pittsfield’s Office of Cultural Development, and is made possible by our major sponsors, including the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Berkshire Gas, Berkshire Life and Berkshire Bank, as well as dozens of downtown partners.
The City Stage will be on Union Street next to Barrington Stage Company and will feature all local youth performers, including the Hillcrest drummers, the top winners of this year’s Berkshire Youth Talent Show, Terpsichore Dance School, Youth Alive Step Dance & Drum Team, and more. Other youth performers will be featured at Palace Park on North Street near Fenn Street, including the Berkshire Singers, The Pittsfield High School Chorus, The Albany Berkshire Ballet, and the Falcetti Music Band.
Just behind Palace Park at 28 Renne Avenue, the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts hosts the opening reception for the annual Art in Our Schools art show from 5pm to 7pm, featuring a wide array of creative work by middle and high school students from Pittsfield’s public schools, including painting, ceramics, drawings, sculpture and mixed media. you'll also find great art in the Art.On.No artist building at 311 North Street, featuring a gallery and open studios.

The Pittsfield Family YMCA will be celebrating their 125thbirthday during 3rd.Thursdays with free family hip hop and zumba classes in the middles of North Street, free facepainting, and performances by the Focus is Our Children modern dance troupe. They will also be presenting their Youth of the Year award and raffling off a $125 gift certificate for YMCA programs in honor of their anniversary, as well as taking signups for summer camp.
Taconic High School's own radio station, WTBR-FM 89.7 will be  broadcasting live with student DJs from the corner of North & Fenn Street. Down the street at Carr Hardware, you acan try out thier new bounce houses, obstacle courses, putts-perfect golf, laser tag and more, and all available for rent.  And don't miss Carr Hardware's new portable photo booth for souvenir pictures.
Chapters Bookstore will be offering facepainting and children's craft, which will benefit cancer patients, as well as having a buy one, get one half off sale on children's toys, including the popular Melissa and Doug line.
Otha Day will be leading an interactive drum circle and Stefanie Weber, founder of the Pittsfield City Hoopla Festival will be showing folks how to hula hoop on Park Square. Down the street the Berkshire Museum will be open late until 8pm with free admission for Berkshire County residents. It’s your last chance to see their magnificent Escher before it closes this weekend. And you’ll have a chance to meet the Pittsfield Colonials baseball team at their headquarters on South Street.

Pittsfield’s yearlong 250th anniversary celebration continues during the first 3rd.Thursdays of the year with the grand opening of Pittsfield 250’s storefront featuring a historic exhibit entitled “Pittsfield at Home.” Stop by and purchase commemorative tshirts, hats, and envelopes and find out more about the mysterious Bearded Brothers of the Berkshires.
Also in conjunction with Pittsfield’s 250th birthday, at 7:30pm there will be a free screening of vintage industrial films about Power Transformers (1930) and the Pittsfield GE Transformer Division (1972) at Barrington Stage Company, located at 30 Union Street, plus a short video on the General Dynamics Littoral Combat Ship project.

North Street’s unique locally-owned businesses will be open late for your browsing pleasure, including Pateez Boutique, a store for women of all ages; Bisque, Beads & Beyond featuring paint your own ceramics and the Berkshires' largest selection of beads; and the Newberry Place with their one-of-a-kind gifts.
The May 19 3rd Thursdays is also the grand opening for Mad Macs at 317 North Street, Berkshire County's only Apple Authorized Service Center. Also on North Street you’ll find a number of great deals and specials during 3rd .Thursdays. RJ Stohr’s Diamonds and Fine Jewelry will be offering 50% off almost everything in the store for one day only; Chapters Bookstore is running a by 2 get 1 50% off on their kids items; and Pittsfield Bra & Girl will not only give you a 10% off coupon for a future purchase when you shop from 5-8pm but they will also donate 10% of their sales to the Elizabeth Freeman Center.
Participating downtown restaurants that will be open late for your dining pleasure include Brix Wine Bar & Bistro; Hot Harry’s, the Highland Restaurant, Baba Louie’s, Pancho’s Mexican Restaurant, Bagels Too, Spice Dragon, Mary’s Carrot Cake CafĂ©, Mission Bar & Tapas, Mad Jacks, and the Lantern Bar & Grill. In addition, there are a wide range of street vendors will be selling a variety of food to enjoy as you walk around the streets and enjoy all that 3rd.Thursdays has to offer.

Besides the terrific youth performers at the city Stage on Union Street and Palace Park on North Street, you can also enjoy great live jazz with the Lucky Five in the Crawford Square alley next to Baba Louie's beginning at 6pm or the 3rd.Thursdays house band, the Berkshire Bateria at Spice Dragon. The Marketplace Cafe will have the island sounds of Tamboura.

Downtown Pittsfield will continue to be alive with entertainment and fun throughout he evening. The Celtic folk band Rakish Paddy continues its tradition of playing every 3rd.Thursdays at Patrick’s Pub on Park Square, as does the jam band Billy Keane & the Misdemeanor Outlaws at Mission Bar & Tapas. Local guitarist Tony Lee Thomas will be playing a solo acoustic set from 8pm to 10pm. All are no cover, but get there early to ensure your seat.
Over at the Crowne Plaza's Underground Pub, DJ Bruno will be spinning techno, club and dance music from 9PM to 1AM, 21+ and $3 cover. And at midnight, the Beacon Cinema will present the midnight premiere of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides in 3-D, with rum and cokes will be available for purchase to those over 21. Doors open at 11pm.

3rd.Thursdays is free to all and happens rain or shine (or hail, locusts, but maybe not tornados). Mark your calendars for the next 3rd.Thursdays on June 16th, featuring the Green Mile and all things leafy and flowering.  For more information about 3rd.Thursdays, please call 413.499.9348 or visit 3rd.Thursdays is a monthly free community street arts festival held rain or shine in downtown Pittsfield, Massachusetts on the 3rd Thursday from May through October. Plenty of free parking is available.
Guess who's back?! 3rd.Thursdays! Watch this great video made by Americorps Fellow Max Moy-Borgen!

Click here to download the 3rd Thursdays Remix, thanks to Shaun Delaney for making this.

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