Housatonic 80,000-square-foot marijuana growing field approval by Planning Board sparks Barrington protests

(Emily Thurlow) Residents of Housatonic protest a proposed marijuana cultivation and manufacturing site in front of Great Barrington Town Hall.

GREAT BARRINGTON — Michelle Loubert has called Housatonic her home for much of her life.
She lives in a homestead on Division Street that was constructed by her father, a bricklayer whose family immigrated to the area from Sicily. It’s where she grew up.
Her mother, who was one of 13, and other family members worked in the mills. Out front of the home on the walkway is her father’s and mother’s names that her father etched into a heart into the concrete.
A couple of doors down is a brown Colonial referred to as the Baumann house and known affectionately as “Baumanor” by her friends and family, where her mother used to live while she grew up.
Her uncle, Peter Baumann still resides there. And much like these two addresses, there are many other elements of Loubert’s family history woven into the Housatonic neighborhood.
In January 2017, one of her sisters died suddenly.
In June of that same year, her mother did as well. Loubert inherited the house from her mother, she says, in hopes of instilling some life back into it again.
“There’s a lot of history and memories here,” she said, adding that some day, she hopes to leave the house to her daughter, Victoria.
But Loubert fears that a new business might foil her plans for the future.

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