Fireworks – 2017 !

Whether you view it as the end of summer, or the beginning of a spectacular Autumn in the Berkshires, the Lake Buel Labor Day weekend fireworks display will be this Saturday starting around 9:00 PM. In the event of rain, unlikely based on current weather forecasts but we all know New England weather’s predictability, the fireworks would shift to Sunday evening.

Enjoy!

Administrative note: A new way to get to this site

You’ve been getting to this site by going to LakeBuel.org. Now you can also get here by going to LakeBuel.com. Same site, just one more way to get here.

The LakeBuel.com site became available, so we scooped it up and set it up so that going there automatically takes you to our .org address.

Note that it doesn’t matter how you capitalize these or whether you prepend the www. E.g., http://www.laKEbuEL.com should work just fine for those who want to keep an even “KEEL,”  wwW.lAKEbuel.com will work for those who want to leave something in their “WAKE,” and LAkeBuEL.org should work for those who like to “LABEL” everything.

Wired West Sign-up period is open!

It’s been years in development, and Wired West is at a critical stage.  The municipal coop to bring fiber based broadband (internet, television, and telephone service) to the under-served towns in Western Massachusetts including New Marlborough and Monterey needs your support to move forward.

It’s essentially a two-step process before build out can occur: 1) each town must have at least 40% of its households express a statement of interest and submit a refundable $49 deposit and 2) each town must vote on issuing a municipal “construction” bond to build out the network with a 2/3 majority needed to pass.  Why 40%? Because at the 40% threshold, the business model projects that the Wired West subscribers will generate sufficient revenue to cover operating costs and payback the construction bonds.

If you have not signed-up and are interested, visit this site soon: https://register.wiredwest.net/ .  Neither town has reached the 40% target as of April 15, 2015.

Let’s also acknowledge the tireless work of our Board of Selectmen appointed reps to Wired West, Monica Webb (Monterey) and Tim Newman (NM) who have shepherded the process so far.  Let’s now do our part to sign up and make telecommuting from the beautiful shores of Lake Buel a viable option!

Read more about Wired West at www.wiredwest.net

Boston Globe article (4/5/2015) about Wired West: https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2015/04/04/time-for-western-mass-get-broadband-speed/Lqo2Ia5tn07lM52PXEbCyL/story.html?comments=all&sort=NEWEST_CREATE_DT

Berkshire Eagle Editorial from May 3, 2015

2013 Fireworks!

Once again, we’ll have the opportunity to watch a splendid fireworks display over Lake Buel on the Saturday evening of Labor Day weekend (August 31).  The launch site will be the beach area near Kutsher’s Sports Academy around 9:00 PM.  Enjoy!!

Dave Lewis

Dear Friends around the Lake,

It is with great sadness that I write to inform you that Dave Lewis passed away on Tuesday. Calling hours are tomorrow and the funeral is on Saturday, both in Lenox (details below).  Dave was an integral part of the Lake Buel Restoration/Preservation District from almost the very beginning.  He loved the lake, took a great deal of pride in keeping our lake in the best condition possible, and was blessed in return by innumerable friendships with lake owners over the years.  We will miss him, both as the ultimate harvester – he left a wide wake that will never be filled, and as a dear friend.

Here is his obituary:

David Harold Lewis, 56, died Tuesday, July 2 at his home in Sandisfield, MA. He leaves behind his beloved wife of 31 years, Judy Lewis, his parents Paul and Louise Lewis of Scotia, NY; son Paul (PJ) Lewis, daughters Elizabeth Lewis, Rachel Lewis, Shawn Lewis Albert and her husband Michael Albert, and 3 grandsons, Andrew, Brendan and Evan Albert; brother Nathan Lewis and his future wife Colleen Abbato; brother Martin Lewis, his wife Brenda Lewis, and their children, Kaylee and Jonah Lewis; brother Robert Lewis and his wife Maria Lewis; and sister Rena Lewis.  

After a carefree childhood in Scotia, New York, David’s early career took many turns– he was a farmhand, child care worker, caretaker, and carpenter. In 1984, he began working for the Lake Buel District, a job he continued for as long as his health permitted. A life-long love of fireworks was fulfilled when he started his own business, Berkshire Fireworks, in 1989. The small company was inspired by a desire to celebrate his treasured mother, whose birthday is July 4th. He took pleasure in the opportunity to bring joy and happiness to others on special occasions by lighting up the skies. He also embraced working out of his home because of his fondness for gardening, barbecuing perfect steaks for guests, and his dog, Morgan.

In both his personal and professional life, David was a man of strong passions. He was committed to both the Jewish principles of his upbringing and the Christian faith he adopted as an adult. His strict moral compass was tempered with compassion for others, especially his family, whom he loved and was loved by dearly. A gifted storyteller, he enjoyed recalling humorous tales of working on farms and in schools or carousing with his brothers and friends. He would sometimes surprise by reciting flawless swathes of Spanish or Hebrew from middle school memory and he occasionally broke into song when especially happy. He died as he lived: brave, faithful, and surrounded by devoted family. Calling hours will be Friday, July 5th, at 4-7pm at Hope Church, 259 Kemble Street in Lenox, and the funeral on Saturday, July 6th, 11am, at the same. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Operation Nehemiah, care of Roche Funeral Home, 120 Main Street, Lenox, MA. 

With deepest sympathy to all his friends and family,

Paula

Paula M. Hatch, Chairman, Prudential Committee, Lake Buel Restoration and Preservation District

It’s not just the Lake water that’s under threat from invasives

There’s nothing quite like sitting by a wood stove or an open fireplace to take the chill off as the days grow shorter and the temps fall.  Perhaps you also get satisfaction from knowing that burning wood is displacing use of expensive heating oil or propane.  But did you also know that you could inadvertently be introducing invasive insects to Lake Buel’s shorelines?  It’s true if you ‘import’ firewood.

The beautiful forests surrounding our Lake are under assault from invasive species.  Common threats include woolly adelgid killing Hemlocks and the Asian Longhorned beetle and emerald ash borer insects attacking hardwood trees.  Already woolly adelgid is ravaging eastern MA and metro New York, and Asian Longhorn beetles are prevalent in sections of Worcester County, MA and have been sighted in Brookline and Boston.  With its initial infestation point most likely Brooklyn, the Asian Longhorned beetle has since spread throughout metro New York City including New Jersey.  Even Central Park has not been immune!  It has been described as the most destructive non-native insect in the US.

What can we do?  Be very careful about buying firewood.  Know where it is sourced, and insist on buying from reputable local firewood dealers.  And be very skeptical of buying bargain firewood in areas where the Asian Longhorned beetles are prevalent.  Don’t inadvertently accelerate the spread of invasive species by “importing” diseased firewood to Lake Buel.  Buy local!

What to learn more?  Here are a few sites you might find helpful:

Don’t Move Firewood

New York Dept of Environmental Protection

New Jersey Dept of Agriculture

Connecticut Dept of Energy and Environmental Protection

Help bring broadband service to Lake Buel!

Many part-time residents have expressed the desire to spend more time at the Lake, but can’t because they lack high-speed internet access.  Telecommuting on Mondays or Fridays (or full-time!) isn’t an option for most without high-speed internet access.   Fulltime residents have been equally frustrated with slow options — dial up internet or DSL for a subset of Lake residents.

You may have heard about Wired West, and the effort to build out the “last mile” network bringing true high-speed internet access along with digital telephone and television options to the Berkshires. We’re passing along information from Wired West, and ask that you take a few minutes to complete the brief Expression of Interest survey card.  This is your opportunity to communicate if you are interested, and assessing potential demand is key milestone for Wired West.  Without sufficient demand, it is much more difficult to justify the network build-out.  Some residents may also receive a survey card in the mail, although online completion is preferred by Wired West.

“WiredWest is our communities’ chosen solution to the regional problem of inadequate broadband.

In Western Massachusetts, over 40 towns have inadequate access to high-speed internet, while it has become a necessity in today’s digital world. Even those who have broadband access are using outdated technologies that are not robust enough to equip our businesses, students and workers to survive and thrive.

Western Massachusetts towns are creating our own solution to this problem. We’ve created a municipal cooperative of member towns, and are working with state and local organizations to build a financially sustainable, state-of-the-art fiber-optic network to serve everyone. A network that will have the capacity to last for decades to come. And a network that will drive regional economic development, create jobs, improve education and healthcare, and provide a sustainable future for our communities.

You probably have a lot of questions about the details. To find out more about the WiredWest project, please see About Us, FAQ, Project Overview, and how you can help the project here.”

FIREWORKS!

CELEBRATE THE CLOSING OF THE SUMMER SEASON WITH A BIG BANG!

Fireworks over the lake

Photo by Paul Schaittacher

This year’s fireworks will be held on Saturday, September 1 at 9pm (rain date is Sunday, September 2) on the beachfront of KSA Sports Camp on the western end of the lake.

Every year, the District sponsors a magnificent display of fireworks on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend for the benefit of all District residents, friends and neighbors.  The display is put on by our very own master Harvester, Dave Lewis, who is also a licensed pyro-technician and the owner and operator of Berkshire Fireworks.

ENJOY!

Our brand new blog!

Welcome to the first official post on Lake Buel’s new blog! (The one above this about zebra mussels is pinned there semi-permanently, so it doesn’t count :)

This blog is by and for the Lake Buel community. It’s a place to share information, stories, photos and more. We hope that it will also be useful to people who have not been here but who are curious about the Lake.

We encourage you to explore the various pages attached to this blog by clicking on the links below the photo of the Lake at the top. If you have questions or comments, please use the commenting feature. Comments are posted unedited, although we of course reserve the right to remove any that are less than civil or are spam; this is not the place to rent your house or sell your boat. It is a place to talk about that which will help each of us preserve the Lake and enhance our experience of it.

If you would like to become a regular blogger, please send an email to one of the initial administrators of this site: Paula Hatch, Chuck Pierce, Ginny Hyde, or David Weinberger. (Please check the blogging guidelines first.)

If you have questions about this blog, or ideas for how it can be improved — and we know there’s lots of room for improvement! — please let us know, either in the comments for this post, or via email to any of the administrators.

And a special shout out of thanks to Robert Chamberlain for so kindly and generously letting us use the LakeBuel.org domain name. Thanks, Robert!