Holy shamrocks, where did the time go?!
It seems spring, at least according to the calendar, is about a week away and St. Patrick's Day, though officially on Monday, is being celebrated nearly all month long.

Here in Berkshire County you can celebrate your true Irish roots, or assume the heritage for a few days, and enjoy a range of festivities, from art exhibits and traditional tea to corned beef and cabbage dinners and pub parties galore.

Whatever you choose to do, please, for the love of the patron saint and the sake of your own dignity, do it responsibly. Massachusetts doesn't need another belligerent, drunken "Blarney Blowout" as seen over the weekend near the UMass-Amherst campus.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again, be safe, have fun and sláinte mhaith!

Ongoing

Now through March 29, two- and three-dimensional artwork by residents from Berkshire County and the surrounding region will be shown in the public works exhibit, "Forty Shades of Green: Art Inspired by Ireland & Irish Culture," at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, 28 Renne Ave., in Pittsfield. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m., and admission is free.

Named after a song written by Johnny Cash after a visit to Ireland, the open call art show features more than 150 works by more than 80 artists from ages 8 into their 80s.

A free, public artists reception will be held from 1 to 3 p.


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m. on Sunday, and will include refreshments, Irish music and a visit from the delegation from Pittsfield's Irish Sister City, Ballina.

The Freight Yard Pub in North Adams has been celebrating St. Patrick's Day since last weekend. The festivities continue this week with a live Irish-influenced musical lineup as follows: Anthony Luchi plays on Friday; the JP Murphy Band strikes up on Saturday; Emerald Dawn plays on Monday; Rakish Paddy performs on Friday, March 21 and Patrick Gray Jr. will play on Saturday, March 22. Music starts nightly around 8 p.m.

Year-round Irish-named taverns Matt Reilly's Pub in Lanesborough, O'Laughlin's Pub and Patrick's Pub in Pittsfield, and The Shamrock Pub in Dalton will be celebrating all weekend long with specials and a festive atmosphere, and perhaps a
leprechaun or two.

The Olde Heritage Tavern in Lenox will be celebrating all weekend through Monday. On Saturday from 10 to midnight, the pub will partner with Guinness to stage a benefit for the Leary Firefighters Foundation.

Friday and Saturday

Combining both traditional and modern interpretations, INISH and Ceol dance troupes will share the glorious dance and music of the Celtic diaspora, beginning at 8 p.m. INISH is directed by visiting guest artist Allison Fippinger. John Sauer is the music director of Ceol.

The show is $3 and is open to the public, and will take place in the Adams Memorial Theatre of the ‘62 Center for Theatre and Dance on Main Street in Williamstown. Friday The JP Murphy Band will play a St. Patrick's Day Bash starting at 9 p.m. at the Purple Pub in Williamstown.

The show is $3 and is open to the public, and will take place in the Adams Memorial Theatre of the ‘62 Center for Theatre and Dance on Main Street in Williamstown. Friday The JP Murphy Band will play a St. Patrick's Day Bash starting at 9 p.m. at the Purple Pub in Williamstown.

The show is $3 and is open to the public, and will take place in the Adams Memorial Theatre of the ‘62 Center for Theatre and Dance on Main Street in Williamstown. Friday The JP Murphy Band will play a St. Patrick's Day Bash starting at 9 p.m. at the Purple Pub in Williamstown.

The show is $3 and is open to the public, and will take place in the Adams Memorial Theatre of the ‘62 Center for Theatre and Dance on Main Street in Williamstown. Friday The JP Murphy Band will play a St. Patrick's Day Bash starting at 9 p.m. at the Purple Pub in Williamstown.

Saturday

Saturday

Saturday

Beginning at noon, Hops and Vines Beer Garden & Brasserie in Williamstown will host an all-day St. Patrick's Day celebration, offering a special menu, live music by Blueberry Buckle and DJ Karl Mullen, games and an eating contest. Costumes and green garb are encouraged.

The Fundraising Committee at St. Agnes Parish in Dalton will host a special St. Patrick's Day corned beef dinner at 5 p.m. in the parish hall.

Tickets are $10 each, and include a meal of corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots, soda bread and a crème de menthe parfait dessert.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary in North Adams will host its St. Patrick's Day Dinner, beginning with a wine and cheese reception at 5 p.m., and a corned beef and ham dinner served at 5:30. Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for children, and can be purchased after masses or at the parish center.

Mill Town Tavern in Dalton at 9:30 p.m., will host a St. Patrick's Day Party and also celebrate a year hosting the band Blackwater.

Michael's of Stockbridge at 9 p.m., will host a St. Patrick's Day Party with WYKYD.

Bogie's Steak & Ale will at 9 p.m., host a St. Patrick's Day Celebration with Norm Stalker, Jim Reynolds, Tommy TenBroeck and Jared Stalker performing songs from their bands Wishful Thinking and Balance, as well as other material.

Whiskey City will host a Chug St. Patrick's Day Party at the ITAM Lodge in Pittsfield. Doors open at 8 p.m. Music starts at 9:30. There is a $5 cover.

Live Wire will perform a St. Patrick's Day Bash at The GEAA's Back Nine Grille, beginning at 9 p.m.

The Velvet Frog Band will play a mix of covers and originals starting at 9:30 at The Brick House Pub in Housatonic.

Casey's in Pittsfield will host a St. Paddy's Day Bash with SHYNE, a new cover band in the Berkshires. There will be Boston Bruins mugs giveaways and other prizes and giveaways. The $5 cover includes the unlimited use of pool tables.

Adams Ale House will host a St. Patrick's Day Party starting at 9 p.m., with performances by Lita Williams.

Beginning at 9 p.m. at the Gypsy Joynt in Great Barrington, go green with Jordan Weller & The Feathers, featuring Bobby MacVeety.

Sunday

The luck of the Irish will be with you when you arrive at 3:30 p.m. to the Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum in Lenox to celebrate St. Patrick's Day with musician Ted Soulos and enjoy a specially prepared Shamrock Tea Service.

Soulos, a veteran of local Irish musical events, will play the Irish flute and whistle. The Ventfort Hall Tea Committee will serve treats such as Celtic Cream Tea, Leprechaun Lemonade with lime, Irish soda bread, corned beef sandwiches on rye, cucumber sandwiches, avocado and bacon sandwiches, pistachio cake, green shamrock cookies and other pastries.

Tickets are $18 for advance reservations, $23 day of event, $7 ages 5 to 17, free ages 4 and under. For more information or reservations, call (413) 637-3206 or visit gildedage.org.

Monday

The Dream Away Lodge in Becket will host its annual St. Patrick's Day dinner with music from the Misty Blues band starting at 7 p.m., featuring performers Gina Coleman, Jason Webster, Bill Patriquin, Dan Teichert and Benny Kohn.

Mission Bar & Tapas in Pittsfield will have live music with Andy Wrba & Friends, with special guests from The Interlopers.

Rob Sanzone will play the Lion's Den at The Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge. No cover.

Thursday, March 20

Hillcrest Education Centers Inc. will host its 13th annual Robert "Bees" Prendergast St. Patrick's Reception, from 6 to 9 p.m., at the Country Club of Pittsfield.

Massachusetts Sen. Benjamin B. Downing, will receive the 2014 "Irish" Person of the Year award. Hillcrest will also present the Judge John A. Barry Community Service Award to volunteer and local business owner, Mick Callahan, who serves as president of M. Callahan Inc., a real estate development and property management company, and is the current chairman of the board of Pittsfield Economic Development Authority.

There will be cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, a buffet, auctions, a raffle and a special live performance by Irish singer-songwriter Liam Geddes. Tickets are $50 per person. To register online, visit hillcrestec.org or contact Sheila Mason, Hillcrest's director of development, at smason@hillcrestec.org or (413) 499-7924, Ext. 133.

Saturday, March 22

Saints Patrick and Raphael Parish of Williamstown will host its annual St. Patrick's Day Dinner Dance at the Williams Inn. Anyone is welcome to attend. A cash bar opens at 5:30 p.m., dinner is served at 6, and dancing follows with DJ Larry Kratka. There will be raffles and door prizes for kids and adults. Adults will have the Irish buffet with corned beef, cabbage, salad, chicken, scrod, veggies and desserts to choose from. Kids can also choose to have chicken fingers and fries.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $10 for children for this family-friendly event, and will be sold after masses, in the parish office and in Williamstown at the UPS Store.

To reach Jenn Smith: jsmith@berkshireeagle.com, or (413) 496-6239 On Twitter: @JennSmithInk