14 things to look forward to in 2014


No. 1: Things that were once "hot" in 2013 will "not" be in 2014 -- at least, one can hope. Maybe we'll go through the new year without hearing about "twerking" or the ever-self-indulgent "selfie." #notin2014

No. 2: It will be an exciting summer for
theater in the Berkshires
, according to Entertainment Editor Jeffrey Borak, who cites the many important milestones local stages will be celebrating. The Barrington Stage Com pany in Pittsfield will mark its 20th anniversary season with Cole Porter's "Kiss Me, Kate," (June 12 through July 12) and the world premiere of "Dancing Lessons" by Mark St. Germain (Aug. 17-24). The Williamstown Theatre Festival will celebrate its 60th ann iversary season this summer, and Chester Theater will mark its 25th anniversary as well.

No. 3: Big concerts take the stage in Berkshire County this year. Indie singer-songwriter Ani DiFranco will be at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center on Saturday, May 3. Train rolls into Lenox (pun intended) to cap off Tanglewood's summer season on Labor Day weekend. And keeping with tradition, James Taylor makes his annual Tanglewood pilgrimage Fourth of July weekend.

No. 4: The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute in Williamstown will unveil its reconceived campus and four new exhibits July 4.

The project brings 97,000 square feet of space to the campus and has been 12 years in the making. The Clark will also be highlighting ab stract art in its new exhibit, which it historically doesn't do. "Make it New: Abstract Paintings from the National Gallery of Art, 1950-1975" will be curated by Harry Cooper, of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, and David Breslin, associate director of the Clarks' Research and Academic Program and Associate Curator of Contemporary Projects. The exhibit runs through Oct. 13, and highlights will include Jackson Pollock's "Number 1, 1950 (Lavender Mist)" and Mark Rothko's "No. 1."

No. 5: The iPhone 6 is expected to hit stores in the fall of 2014 -- just in time for you to get used to the iPhone 5, of course. In other tech news, Google glasses may finally launch a less expensive, consumer version of the high-tech specs sometime in the new year.

No. 6: It will be Boston Symphony's
designated Music Director Andris Nelsons' first summer at Tangle wood
, where he is slated to lead four concerts over two weeks. Nel son, who succeeds James Levine, canceled a concert with the BSO at Tangle wood last July due to a concussion he sustained while working. It's sure to be a great summer to grab a spot on the lawn and listen to history in the making.

No. 7: The new zipline adventure park on Brodie Mountain in Lanesborough is expected to open in February. Grab some friends and tackle the aerial adventure park, Ramblewild, with 140 aerial platforms and a 200-foot-long cable suspension bridge.

No. 8: You waited in line for the cronut -- or maybe you said "Who the heck would pay $5 for that?" -- and you tasted the sweet pretzel bun that made its mark in 2013, but 2014 belongs to the biscuit, according to food trend spotters in the industry. You can also put down that gourmet cupcake because ice cream sandwiches are predicted to be the next high-end dessert to hit your wallet.

No. 9: In other food news local will continue to be big in the new year -- but hyper-local, as in your own backyard. According to the National Rest aurant Asso ciation, locally grown produce -- including some eateries having their own gardens right behind the kitchen -- will continue to take over menus.

No. 10: Facebook turns 10 -- we know, it's hard to believe the little social media giant has hit double digits. With the importance of image sharing and micro-videos popping up all over the Web, it will be interesting to see what the social network does in 2014 to tick off its users for a day until they forget the changes and just keep on updating their Facebook profile, one status at a time.

No. 11: Lovers of ‘90s fashion rejoice -- yes, you in the flannel, even you. Runways were alive at the Spring 2014 fashion shows in New York with mega logos and overalls giving a nod to your OshKosh B'Gosh youth. For those not into the "retro" look, (Can it be retro if it was only a few decades ago?) pastels were also a big trend, which can be more forgiving than the over-sized vests and hippie sandals with socks that graced New York Fashion Week.

No. 12: Head to upstreet Pittsfield for the third annual 10X10 festival running Feb. 13-23. For 11 days, a mix of art, dance, film, music, theater, comedy and more warms up the winter month and is the perfect opportunity to shake of the February blues and get out of the house. Looking for another way to liven up the month? How about getting dressed up and practicing your coursage-pinning skills by attending the annual NAMA Prom (this year's theme is "Out of this World") on Feb. 22.

No. 13: 2014 is a big state politics year for Massachusetts. The biggest race to watch out for, according to Eagle Editorial Editor Bill Everhart, is for governor as our Richmond-native Deval Patrick is not running for re-election. Martha Coakley, who has North Adams and Williams connections, is running for Democratic nomination. U.S. Rep. Richard Neal and U.S. Sen. Edward Markey are up for re-election also.

No. 14: No more "best of" lists. Well, that is at least until we hit New Year's Eve, 2015. Happy New Year!


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