Chelmsford

Just click below on the paper you want to read. You can read life-size by clicking on the four corner box bottom right, then turn pages with mouse at corners just like you would if paper!

Current Edition - 7/12/24
Previous Edition - 6/28/24

HEADLINES

Toastmasters Now Meeting
at the Cameron Senior Center

 
TOASTMASTERS WILL HELP YOU:
· Speak and present compellingly
· Think clearly and quickly on your feet
· Become an effective leader
· Gain confidence
Westford Expressions is your local Toastmaster club, with weekly hybrid meetings. You are most welcome to join us at the Cameron Senior Center in Westford (20 Pleasant St.), or via Zoom. We are a non-profit community club, part of the world-wide Toastmaster International organization. You will learn communication and leadership skills in a supportive environment. You set the pace and attend meetings according to your schedule.
Join us at a meeting, any Monday evening at 7 pm except on holidays. For additional information about the club, contact us at: vpm-4690@toastmastersclubs.org To attend a meeting go to our web site, westfordexpressions.toastmastersclubs.org
Dsndp cleanliness drive july 14  2024 8

Global Nonprofit DSNDP Volunteers From Massachusetts participate in Cleanliness Drive!

On July 14th ,2024, Massachusetts State residents joined hands as dedicated volunteers of the global non-profit organization Dr. Shri. Nanasaheb Dharmadhikari Pratishthan (DSNDP), undertaking Adopt-A-Highway & Adopt-A-Visibility-Site clean-up drive in collaboration with the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) at (Adopt-A-Highway) 135 Eastbound side from Pond Rd. to Weston Rd, Wellesley, MA 02481 & (Adopt-A-Visibility-Site) at Gonzalez Lower Lot: Town of Dedham, 506 High St, Dedham, MA 02026.
In alignment with the motto “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” (The world is one family), DSNDP aims to foster a brighter future by advocating for cleanliness drives in collaboration with the US government by undertaking nationwide cleanliness drives since July 2022. These activities are executed under the guidance of the founders of the organisation Dr. Shri Appasaheb Dharmadhikari and Dr. Shri Sachindada Dharmadhikari.
Earlier in Massachusetts, the organization also carried out other cleanliness activities such as Adopt-a-Visibility-Site, Adopt- a-Highway, across 3 cities involving a total of 67 volunteers who worked for around 85 volunteer hours and collected 28 bags of waste resulting in approx. 420 pounds of trash.
Within the North America continent, DSNDP continues to collaborate with 18 states and 73 cities across the United States for nationwide cleanliness drive including 23 different programs such as Adopt-Highway/Park/Beach/ Street/ River etc. During these cleanliness drives, DSNDP has successfully engaged 2109 volunteers, actively collecting more than 34000 pounds of trash, resulting in significant cost savings for the government. The organisation has received accolades from various state and county governments in the form of 53 certificates and 51 signboards within the nation.
The organisation is also involved in tree plantation across 15 states and 33 cities within the US. DSNDP is also involved in health initiatives such as the Women’s Cancer Awareness Conference successfully hosted in February 2023 and blood/ plasma donation drives in Canada and the United States in recent years. DSNDP also recently organised a Mega Cleanliness Drive and Tree Conservation Event across 21 locations simultaneously to celebrate Earth Day 2024.
For more information, please visit http://www.dsndp.com
Nyara

The National Center For Missing & Exploited Children Is Seeking The Public’s Assistance In Locating Missing 14-Year-Old, Nyara Mitchell.

Nyara has been missing since June 22, 2024, from her home in Canton, Massachusetts. Nyara is described as 5’5”, weighs 170 lbs., and has brown eyes with black hair. Authorities believe that Nyara may be in Boston, Massachusetts area.
In an effort to bring more attention to Nyara’s case, her poster is being featured on the Ring’s Neighbors app as a part of a partnership between NCMEC and Ring. This feature reaches millions of users, providing real-time assistance in locating missing children.
If you have any information about Nyara or her disappearance, please contact NCMEC at 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678) or the Canton Police Department (Massachusetts) at 1-781-821-5090

The Merry Wives of Windsor coming to Concord July 20-27

 
Once again, The World’s A Stage Players, Concord Players’ Shakespeare Troupe, will stage a free production on the lawn of the Concord Free Public Library. The Merry Wives of Windsor will be presented on consecutive Saturdays and Sundays, July 20-27 at 5 PM.
One of Shakespeare’s funniest and most accessible comedies, The Merry Wives of Windsor is, in many ways, a thoroughly modern production. “I think of Merry Wives as a contemporary soap opera,” says Director Jim Porter. “Everything is just pitched a little higher, everything is a bit more over the top, it’s all very dramatic … which, of course, makes for great comedy.”
The two Merry Wives, played by Hannah Clifford (Mistress Ford) and Jacey Lynn Rutledge (Mistress Page) are simultaneously wooed by the arrogant yet oblivious Falstaff (played by Mike Haddad). Once they discover his brazen pursuit, they decide to have a little fun at his expense and go to extensive lengths to make him look like a fool.
“Hannah and I have several scenes where we team up to undermine Falstaff’s egotism and self-importance,” says Jacey. “Our characters know what’s going on. The audience knows what’s going on. But Falstaff has no idea, which is a lot of fun.”
Mike Haddad, a frequent performer and director with The World’s A Stage Players, turns Falstaff’s foibles into comic gold. “His cluelessness is what makes him fun,” says Mike. “He thinks he’s God’s gift to humanity, and assumes everyone else thinks so too. It’s a great role to play and a funny one to watch.”
The show features some of Shakespeare’s best wordplay. Shakespeare creates several hilarious characters with non-traditional and/or non-English accents – the French Doctor Caius (played by Andrew Harrington) struggles mightily with his English, while the Welsh parson Sir Hugh Evans’ (played by John Small, making his World’s A Stage Players’ debut) malapropisms add to the humor. Andrew’s real-life wife, Jasmine Yong Hall, plays the inn-keeper Mistress Quickly with a full-on cockney accent.
Merry Wives also features strong women characters, which creates a sense of female empowerment that feels distinctly feminist.
“One of the best things about the show is that the women are firmly in charge,” notes Director Jim Porter. “The men range from jovial to profoundly jealous to utterly moronic, but the women are smart, clever and very funny.”
As always, The World’s A Stage Players draws on a cast of both regulars, occasional returnees and newcomers. Returnees from last summer include Ava Enoch, Michael Jay, Darin Kimball and AJ Gaudreau, along with newcomer Cherry Lynn Zinger and Rutledge. Other familiar faces include Katie Speed, Mike Lague, Julian Willard, Kathleen O’Connor (who is also producing the show) and Ed Bernard. Ed and Andrew Harrington are the only two performers who have
appeared in every World’s A Stage Players’ production. “This is the first time in several years where my character is both alive and married at the end of the show,” says Ed, a Concord resident. “Usually, I’m either dead or alone or both.”
Performances are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, July 20, 21, 27 and 28 at 5 PM on the lawn of the Concord Free Public Library, with a rain venue at 51 Walden Street. There is also an indoor air-conditioned performance on Friday, July 26 at 7 PM.
Patrons are invited to bring blankets or chairs and sit on the lawn; a limited number of chairs will be provided. For more information, visit www.concordplayers.org.
Riverfest 1

RiverFest Summer 2024
Explore our Local Rivers

Now through July 28

Your description text goes here. You can edit all of this text and replace it with whatever you like. For example, you can write about your company, the products or services you offer, the areas you serve and what makes you unique. You can even include a button to encourage visitors to take a specific action.

BBB Scam Alert: Fake events & phone tickets

Many people are looking forward to fun festivals this summer. As usual, scammers are taking advantage of the building excitement. This time, they are cashing in with phony tickets—and even fake events.
How the scam works:
You see a fantastic deal on tickets to a summer festival in your area, usually through a link on social media. The event promises live music, all-you-can-eat meals, craft beer or wine, or other fun activities.
When you click the social media link, it takes you to a professional website with fantastic pictures. You enter your credit card information to buy tickets and think you are all set. But before you buy, do a little research. Whether the event is non-existent, merely disappointing, or you just bought phony tickets, the result is the same: someone pockets your hard-earned money!
BBB Scam Tracker has received numerous reports from people who purchased fake tickets to actual events or events that have yet to materialize.
A customer in Memphis reported buying tickets for $220 for a concert: "I saw an offer for presale tickets for the group Khruangbin for a concert in May. I clicked on the links and it lead me to what looked like a legit site until I realized that they are a resellers site and had marked up the ticket prices tremendously. The prices were also in USD and the service charge was astounding. I contacted the company right away but they just dismiss and ignore. They are SCAMMERS and need to be off the market. They have scammed lots of people and it is very humiliating and stressful."
One consumer who purchased tickets to a fake beer crawl reported: “Reviews across multiple platforms make it clear that these events are at best extremely misleading or at worst canceled. No refunds are given, even when their inconsistent and mostly-unreachable customer service email address responds to confirm a refund will be provided.”
How to spot a fake festival:
*Research before you buy. Search online for the festival's name and ensure the name advertised matches the website. Scammers often use names that sound similar to those of real festivals.
*Check for (working) contact information. The festival website should have a real phone number and email address.
*Watch out for prices that sound too good to be true. There is no way a festival can offer tickets at extremely low prices without losing money. If the prices are much lower than elsewhere, it's likely a scam.
What can you do?
*Pay with a credit card. You can dispute the charges if the business doesn't come through. Be wary of online sellers that don’t accept credit cards.
*Look for secure sites. The website should begin with HTTPS (the extra “s” is for security) and have a lock symbol on the address bar.
*Avoid tickets sold on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and other free online listings.  Scammers are skilled at providing realistic tickets and fake receipts. Check out third-party ticket sites at BBB.org before making purchases.
For more information:
Read BBB's tips for buying tickets to an event. For general information on how to avoid scams, visit BBB.org/AvoidScams

Summer Crafts Fair in Concord

The Summer Crafts Fair 2024 will take place on Saturday, August 3rd from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at First Parish in Concord, 20 Lexington Road, Concord, MA. In case of rain, the fair will be brought indoors on the same date. This juried fair will offer a wide variety of handmade works by fine artists, photographers, jewelers, fiber artists, woodworkers, florists, specialty food providers and other artisans. Great browsing and shopping for people of all ages. Food will be served all day on site. A few vendor spaces are available to rent. Call 978-369-9602 to rent a space.

John Ferullo at PCA “On-the-Common”

Saturday, July 13
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Parish Center for the Arts, Westford Common
10 Lincoln Street
Westford, MA 01886
Want to get an idea what Open Mic Night is all about before diving in come Fall? Meet and speak with host John Ferullo, then enjoy a sampler of the PCA's in-season 2nd & 4th Sunday Open Mic events "On-the-Common" (Westford Common)!
Bring a lawn chair, a blanket, a picnic and/or snacks for a wonderful afternoon of music from some PCA musician favorites.

Chelmsford Community Band Coming This Month

The Chelmsford Community Concert Band, directed by Eric Linsner, invites you to join them on the town green at 7pm on Tuesday July 16, 23, and 30.  Spread your blanket or set up your chairs on the grass for fun and lighthearted music as the stars come out.
Having recently celebrated its golden anniversary, the Chelmsford Community Band is a 501(c)3 nonprofit consisting of a 65-piece concert band and a 20-piece jazz ensemble made of dedicated local volunteer musicians with a proud tradition of bringing live musical performances to the Chelmsford community since 1972.  They provide indoor concerts throughout the year and can be seen on Chelmsford Common Tuesday nights in the summer.  Come to more performances of the concert band at 7pm on Tuesdays in July, and listen to the jazz ensemble Tuesday nights in August.  They are supported by multiple Mass Cultural Council grants, including one for Cultural Sector Recovery.  Follow them on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter/X, and find them on the web at www.chelmsfordcommunityband.com

Summer Donations

 
The Chelmsford Senior Center graciously accepts gift cards from local pharmacies and grocery stores to distribute to Chelmsford seniors in need. Please drop off any gift card donations with Elena in the Senior Center office. Located at 75 Groton Road, N. Chelmsford, MA 01863

Letters to Publisher: Happy 4th Of July

 
It's independence day
And we'll all sing and dance
Today and we'll remember our
Loved ones who fought for

Our freedom and it
Came with
A heavy price
War is not pretty
nor is it nice

So let's take a minute
To remember our
Brave men and women
Who sadly passed away
Fighting for our freedom

And the fireworks
Has just begun and
The kids are having so
Much fun waving American flags
And while the adults have a few
Beers and
Hug and kiss each other
And everyone is full of love
So raise your glass or your can
Of beer and
Toast for the 4th of July
And it's a beautiful
And perfect day to
Celebrate our independence day
Fourth of July
Fourth of July

And this special day is
Forever inside our hearts
Our freedom
And liberty we won so let's
Get this party started
And we'll have so much fun and
We'll never forget our true hero's who
Died for this day so scream out loud
Happy 4th of July and
God bless you all and peace and love
To every American on our independence day.

David P Carroll
Glcf24 james loubna csa delivery

Bringing Fresh Produce to Homeless Families & Individuals in Greater Lowell

Lowell, MA – Two local nonprofits – Community Teamwork Inc. and Mill City Grows – have teamed up to bring fresh produce to families and individuals experiencing homelessness. The Greater Lowell Community Foundation (GLCF) facilitated the project by partnering with a state-directed program to allocate federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to nonprofit organizations addressing food insecurity in the region.
In partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD), GLCF administered the CARES Act Community Development Block Grant Food Security Program throughout Greater Lowell, explained Jay Linnehan, GLCF President and CEO.
“Through this state program, the Foundation has been able to direct federal funds to support low- to moderate-income households in our service area who are facing food insecurities as a result of COVID-19,” Linnehan said. “Our goal was to partner with nonprofits in our region who provide services to individuals and households living below 80 percent of the applicable area median income,” he added.
Last winter, thanks to this Food Security Program funding, Community Teamwork Inc. (CTI) launched a pilot program with the urban farm program Mill City Grows, to deliver Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) shares to 28 families living in CTI’s family shelter in Tewksbury, according to Amy F. Weatherbee, CTI’s Director of Planning & Quality Improvement.
“We established this program to bring fresh, healthy food to our clients who are experiencing homelessness,” explained Weatherbee. “And we are also supporting Mill City Grows, which has a mission to expand distribution of its locally grown food to residents who need it.”
A Lowell nonprofit, Mill City Grows encourages food justice by improving physical health, economic independence, and environmental sustainability through increased access to land, locally-grown food, and education, according to Co-Executive Director Courtney McSparron.
“Our main farm is located in Lowell, and we predominantly serve Lowell,” said McSparron. “However, we had recently expanded our CSA deliveries to Dracut, Tyngsborough and Tewksbury. So, when CTI called, it was perfect.
“This partnership enables us to deliver a lot of produce to one site – it’s ideal and furthers our mission to get more people fresh food,” she added.
The Tewksbury family shelter is run by Bela Arruda, CTI’s Rehousing & Stabilization Services Manager. She estimates that some 80 individuals -- adults and children – enjoyed Mill City Grows’ produce last winter.
“Our families loved it,” said Arruda. “We delivered CSAs every two weeks and they were so thankful. Fresh produce can be very expensive to buy.”
Another thing the families enjoyed was learning about the different vegetables and fruits they received in the CSAs, she said. Mill City Grows included information about the produce delivered, along with recipes and suggestions about how to prepare it.
“Cooking and eating together – and learning about new foods – can be a bonding experience for these families, who can be experiencing difficult and stressful situations,” Arruda added.
The winter CSA pilot program was so successful, according to Weatherbee, that CTI applied for and received more funding to continue serving families through the summer, as well as to expand the program to individuals.
Beginning in June, Mill City Grows began delivering CSAs to individuals living in CTI’s newly opened Summer Street shelter in Lowell, which provides permanent housing for 19 previously chronically unsheltered individuals.
“Serving our Tewksbury shelter and Summer Street with CSAs made sense, because these families and individuals have kitchenettes in their units and can cook and eat together, as well as store fresh produce,” said Sean Wilson, CTI’s Deputy Division Director of Family Homeless Services, Housing & Homeless Service Department.
According to McSparron at Mill City Grows, a very high percentage of what the families and individuals receive in their CSAs is grown close by. “This is very good, very fresh produce – grown without pesticides or herbicides – which is not traveling very far to get to them.” And Mill City Grows raises culturally sensitive crops, as much as possible, she added.
“We’re always changing what we grow, based on what the community asks for. We have a large Southeast Asian population here in Lowell, and a growing African community. We work closely with our farmers to grow specialty produce – like water spinach, bitter melon and different types of eggplants – that these populations like.
“James Tierney, our CSA Manager, has really made this program successful. He’s very responsive to participants’ feedback. We’re very hopeful this partnership continues,” said McSparron. “These are the families we want to serve.”
Community Teamwork Inc. is also happy with the arrangement, added Wilson. “CTI is serving some of the most vulnerable and food-insecure clients in the Commonwealth,” he said. “This program was an opportunity to try something new, to bring fresh produce to families experiencing homelessness.
“And this program also helps promote feelings of self-sufficiency in these families. We want them to leave our shelter feeling confident that they can handle new and different situations.”
For more information about the Greater Lowell Community Foundation, visit: www.glcfoundation.org
About Greater Lowell Community Foundation -- Established in 1997, the Greater Lowell Community Foundation (GLCF) is a philanthropic organization comprised of more than 450 funds dedicated to improving the quality of life in 21 neighboring cities and towns. With financial assets of nearly $65 million, GLCF annually awards grants and scholarships to hundreds of worthy nonprofits and students. It is powered by the winning combination of donor-directed giving, personal attention from Foundation staff, and an in-depth understanding of local needs. The generosity of our donors has enabled the Community Foundation to award more than $40 million to the Greater Lowell community.
Student financial fair

Littleton High School Students Participate in Second Annual Financial Literacy Fair

Superintendent Kelly Clenchy is pleased to announce that Littleton High School students recently participated in the school's second annual financial literacy fair.
The financial literacy fair took place on Tuesday, May 21. The event was designed to help students learn how to budget, manage, and spend their money responsibly.
Students were asked to provide their choice of career earlier this year in preparation for the event. On the day of the fair, students received a folio with a career profile, a mock paycheck, an assigned credit score (reflective of their attendance), and a budget worksheet.
During the event, students visited 13 stations where they had to make typical financial decisions they may face as a young adult. Booths included housing, furniture, food, health insurance, clothing, transportation, philanthropy/community service, education, luxuries, insurance (car and renter), savings, investing, and retirement, the Reality Wheel of fortune or misfortune, and budget counseling.
"The financial literacy fair is an amazing event for our students to assume adult responsibility as they prepare to enter the world outside of high school," said Superintendent Clenchy. "Thank you to all who helped put this event together!"
Paddling on the sudbury river riverfest 2023

Celebrate our Local Rivers at RiverFest
July 6 – July 28

RiverFest Summer 2024 is your opportunity to explore our federally protected Sudbury, Assabet, and Concord Wild & Scenic Rivers. In the MetroWest area, from Lowell to Framingham, three weeks of free events in 9 communities will be hosted on and along the rivers, highlighting what makes them unique and special.
This year’s events include family festivities at the Old Manse in Concord (July 20) and Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in Sudbury (July 27), guided canoe & kayak trips, nature walks, history talks, bird watching, outdoor yoga, plein air painting, and even a walking book group stroll. Kids may especially enjoy events allowing them to explore the riverbanks or get an up-close look at some wildlife. There’s something for everyone to enjoy, whether young or old, adventuresome or more interest in a leisurely picnic along a river!
Please go to www.sudbury-assabet-concord.org to view a complete listing of RiverFest Summer 2024 events taking place from July 6-28.
Ruta beggars

Audiences are Beggin’ for More when The Ruta Beggars Come to Town


WESTFORD: Appealing to traditional and progressive acoustic music fans alike, The Ruta Beggars combine bluegrass and early swing to create a timeless act filled with intricate vocal harmonies, fiery instrumentals, and plenty of fun. The Beggars will be playing the Parish Center for the Arts, 10 Lincoln Street, on June 28 at 7:30pm.  Tickets range from $12 (Card-to-Culture pricing) to $25, and are available by calling (978) 692-6333, or online at pcawestford.org.  BYOB and snacks for a full evening of entertainment!
The Ruta Beggars have been praised for their creative yet tasteful arrangements and charming performances. Since 2018 they have brought the joy of their live show to audiences across the US and Canada from festival stages to storied folk listening rooms and as support for legacy acts Lyle Lovett and Ricky Skaggs. The Ruta Beggars are 2019 Thomas Point band competition winners, 2023 IBMA official showcasing artists, Freshgrass Foundation commissioned composers, Freshgrass Award finalists, and Skyline Records artists. Best-of-friends since their inception, The Ruta Beggars are Micah Nicol (guitar), Trevin Nelson (banjo), Noah Harrington (bass), Sam Stage (fiddle), and Jean-Baptiste Cardineau (mandolin), who met through studying in Berklee College of Music's American Roots Program.
This event is honoring the Massachusetts Cultural Council "Card-to-Culture" program (https://massculturalcouncil.org/organizations/card-to-culture) with a special discounted ticket price available to card-holding members. C2C cards will be requested when you pick up your tickets at the box office.
Direct ticket link: https://parisharts.square.site/product/6-28-24-the-ruta-beggars/178
Though this is the last concert of the Parish Center’s 2023-24 formal season, don’t miss upcoming summer Concerts-on-the Common!
  • July 13 - John Ferullo's Open Mic Night Sampler, 2-5pm
  • July 20 - MOMENTUM (Rain date, July 21), 2-4pm
  • August 3 - Common Picking Mini Bluegrass Festival, noon-7pm
  • August 10 - Ed McCarron (Rain date, August 11), 2:30-4:30pm
For more information, visit www.pcawestford.org, or call (978) 692-6333.

Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club, Celebrating 59 Years – Summer Picnic

 
Acton, Ayer, Boxborough, Concord, Chelmsford, Littleton, Maynard, Groton, Harvard, Stow, Westford and Surrounding Towns – Celebrating more than 50 years of community building, the Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club will host its’ summer picnic to welcome interested community members in learning more about the club as well as those looking to reconnect with established members. The picnic is being held from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 22, at the NARA PARK PATIO TENT - 25 Ledge Rock Way, Acton, MA, 01720. Enjoy a potluck picnic, music, lawn games and other summer-time delights with the Neighbors - rain or shine under the Nara Park Patio Tent! Club members and guests interested in learning more about the Club are invited to this affair for neighborly conversation and enjoyment of summer picnic activities.
The Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club is excited to invite community members to join us in a variety of activities including Adventure Group, Game Night, Men’s Night Out, Ladies’ Night Out, Book Group, Wine Tasting, Lunch Bunch, dining in and out events, and special events.
Join our Facebook Page and visit the Club’s website at http://www.nashobavalleyneighbors.org for more information on this and other events, as well as information on how to become a member of the Nashoba Valley Neighbors. We look forward to seeing you!
The Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club is a non-profit social organization open to new and established residents from our communities. Celebrating our 50th Anniversary in 2015, we were originally known as the Welcome Wagon Newcomers Club of Acton. More recently, we have been known as the Acton-Boxborough Newcomers & Neighbors Club. Discovering that established residents in our surrounding communities are also looking to explore new interests and to make connections with new friends, we became the Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club in 2014.
Smile summer

SMILE Mass Continues Building Happy Memories One Summer at a Time Non-profit brings accessible vacation opportunities throughout the season.

June 12, 2024 (SUDBURY, Massachusetts) – As a young mother to a child with severe disabilities, SMILE Mass founder Lotte Diomede quickly realized the world wasn’t built for children like her son, Nicholas. One day, Lotte tried to take Nicholas and his sister to their neighborhood park in Sudbury, MA, only to find that it didn’t have a swing that both kids were able to use. Her daughter Annabelle could enjoy the freedom of swinging high into the sky, while Nicholas had to watch from outside the fence of the playground. This life-changing moment sparked a determination in her and she approached the Parks and Recreation Department to see what could be done. Driven by a profound love for her children and a vision of inclusivity, she spearheaded an accessible playground project along with hundreds of other volunteers in the community and the first playground in MetroWest with a universal design, opening the door to simple joys and unforgettable moments for countless families.
Since that time, SMILE Mass (Small Miracles in Life Exist) “swung” into becoming a 501C3 non-profit organization that helps families raising children or adults with disabilities enjoy happy, healthy memories through education, vacation, and recreation experiences.  Though every season is vibrant and energetic for the MetroWest-based non-profit, the organization is at its most active during the late spring and summer seasons, when many of its programs are in full swing.
“Life memories are often made as the weather gets warmer and families vacation together,” explained Lotte.  “For those with a physically disabled family member, such a day can be far from relaxing, often filled with struggles and unexpected challenges due to the lack of accessibility to the beach and a consistent schedule. It was an extension of our playground project when we brought accessibility to the beach.”
Since its inception, SMILE Mass has donated more than 180 floating beach wheelchairs to public ponds and beaches throughout New England to make them more accessible to the disabled. The colorful chairs allow beachgoers with mobility disabilities to travel over the hot surface of the parking lot, roll seamlessly over the thick beach sand, and plunge right into the water like their typical friends and family. The chairs recline into three different positions and have two large wheels at the back and a smaller wheel in front allowing them to be pushed through the sand with relative ease. As a floating device, the chair can be immersed in the water and float gently with the tide. There isn’t a more relaxing way to enjoy a summer day than spending it on the beach.
Due to the overwhelming demand for the program, the organization launched the SMILE Mass Floating Beach Wheelchair Awards Program, which allows towns and cities to apply for their floating beach wheelchair. Officials associated with the city or town, or residents could apply for the award to make their beach location more accessible.
SMILE Mass recently presented new chairs to the towns of Newburyport, Amesbury, Manchester by the Sea, and the Massachusetts Audubon Society in Barnstable with additional chairs to be gifted to Easton, MA, Nahant, and Standish ME in the coming weeks.  Due to the success of the program, the town of Dennis added 20 new chairs to their beaches.
“We are grateful to beach and recreation director Dustin Pineau for being such an active proponent of accessibility. To say we have had success is an understatement – with the support of SMILE Mass, it is clear that the town of Dennis understands the importance of the program as they retire older chairs and consistently strive to make their fleet better.”
“We present the chairs surrounded by some excitement. It’s a big event when accessibility is introduced or expanded in an area, and the decision of the town or municipality to promote accessibility should be celebrated. People with disabilities have the same rights as others, and enjoying a day at the beach is not just a luxury but a right that anyone should be able to experience. We recently had wonderful events in Newburyport and Amesbury where a large contingent of townspeople with and without disabilities came to cheer on the town’s commitment to accessibility.” 
You can find a list of other participating beaches where the SMILE Mass chairs are located at https://smilemass.org/initiative/beach-wheelchairs/.
SMILE Mass also operates a free equipment loaner program for families with disabled family members who may be going on a day, week, or extended vacation. 
“The loaner program was started as an extension of the beach wheelchair program, explained Lotte. “Once word got out about the beach wheelchairs we were donating to public beaches, people started calling because they vacationed in an area that did not yet have one of the donated chairs.”
To help alleviate that issue, SMILE Mass started a loaner program out of Sudbury, Massachusetts. Families can borrow adapted equipment to take anywhere. The inventory includes floating beach wheelchairs, a bath chair with a back, a blue Freedom running stroller, a Hoyer lift, portable ramps and so much more. Any of these items can be borrowed to help families enjoy a day of recreation or a vacation away from home with the right amenities.
SMILE Mass also owns a fully accessible vacation home on the beautiful Truro beach in Massachusetts, providing families with disabled loved ones a much-needed break and an inclusive environment to create lasting memories. The handicap-accessible beachfront condo sits just 75 feet from the ocean and allows accessibility for any family traveling with loved ones with disabilities. The condo sleeps six, with a private beach, two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a roll-in shower, adapted equipment with a universal design flair and all exterior doors have ramps to allow easy access for those
Club SMILE Mass, the organization’s fastest-growing program to date, consists of hybrid classes to stimulate clients with disabilities both mentally and physically. Classes include access to one-on-one gym and swim or small group classes, swimming classes at Atkinson Swimming Pool in Sudbury, and seven-day-per-week access to any LA Fitness in Massachusetts. The program also includes in-person social groups, including music therapy, book club, storytime, bingo, small group workout classes, bike evaluations via Zoom, and more. A physical therapist performs the bike evaluations. All trainers of Club SMILE Mass are specially trained to work with people with disabilities.
“We have received dozens of inquiries from families and organizations struggling with the lack of available services due to the labor shortage in the healthcare sector. These services were previously available to this vulnerable population but dried up during Covid,” continued Diomede. “Through Club SMILE Mass, we provide much-needed daily activities with a focus on movement. There are currently no existing clubs for someone with disabilities, which is a huge problem, and this is why Club SMILE Mass has become so popular.”
SMILE Mass plans to purchase land, which will be the home of “Club SMILE Mass, Community within a Community,” to help bring a sense of equity and inclusion to the severely disabled population in MetroWest.   “Our goal is to create a hub that becomes the leading source of a well-rounded program that takes clients after school age and well into adulthood. Our clients never age out of the program.”
“We have been working to reach an agreement with the owners of a property in MetroWest to complete the acquisition of the property. The property will allow us to bring our Club SMILE Mass program in-house and provide immediate relief to thousands of families in Massachusetts currently without services. This is why fundraising is especially critical,” explained Ms. Diomede.  Every dollar raised is something we didn’t have prior. Each donation will make a profound difference directly into the community
“This is our biggest undertaking yet,” continued Lotte. It is an opportunity for those who believe in equity and equality to resolve a national crisis following the pandemic. We are a grass-roots organization that receives no state funding. All our programs are made possible through grants, fundraising, annual sponsorships, and donations by those who know of all the good SMILE Mass does for the population of the disabled and their families.”
We rely on our existing donors, new donors, and sponsors to take us through each phase of the three-phase Capital Campaign. There is a donation level for everyone, regardless of your financial means.” To donate to the Capital Campaign or any of our programs, visit the SMILE Mass website at smilemass.org or call Lotte at 617-967-7755. 
About SMILE Mass: Small Miracles in Life Exist (SMILE Mass) is a 501 C3 non-profit organization dedicated to helping families raising children or adults with disabilities enjoy happy, healthy memories through vacation and recreation experiences. For more information, visit www.smilemass.org
Smile summer

SMILE Mass Continues Building Happy Memories One Summer at a Time Non-profit brings accessible vacation opportunities throughout the season.

June 12, 2024 (SUDBURY, Massachusetts) – As a young mother to a child with severe disabilities, SMILE Mass founder Lotte Diomede quickly realized the world wasn’t built for children like her son, Nicholas. One day, Lotte tried to take Nicholas and his sister to their neighborhood park in Sudbury, MA, only to find that it didn’t have a swing that both kids were able to use. Her daughter Annabelle could enjoy the freedom of swinging high into the sky, while Nicholas had to watch from outside the fence of the playground. This life-changing moment sparked a determination in her and she approached the Parks and Recreation Department to see what could be done. Driven by a profound love for her children and a vision of inclusivity, she spearheaded an accessible playground project along with hundreds of other volunteers in the community and the first playground in MetroWest with a universal design, opening the door to simple joys and unforgettable moments for countless families.
Since that time, SMILE Mass (Small Miracles in Life Exist) “swung” into becoming a 501C3 non-profit organization that helps families raising children or adults with disabilities enjoy happy, healthy memories through education, vacation, and recreation experiences.  Though every season is vibrant and energetic for the MetroWest-based non-profit, the organization is at its most active during the late spring and summer seasons, when many of its programs are in full swing.
“Life memories are often made as the weather gets warmer and families vacation together,” explained Lotte.  “For those with a physically disabled family member, such a day can be far from relaxing, often filled with struggles and unexpected challenges due to the lack of accessibility to the beach and a consistent schedule. It was an extension of our playground project when we brought accessibility to the beach.”
Since its inception, SMILE Mass has donated more than 180 floating beach wheelchairs to public ponds and beaches throughout New England to make them more accessible to the disabled. The colorful chairs allow beachgoers with mobility disabilities to travel over the hot surface of the parking lot, roll seamlessly over the thick beach sand, and plunge right into the water like their typical friends and family. The chairs recline into three different positions and have two large wheels at the back and a smaller wheel in front allowing them to be pushed through the sand with relative ease. As a floating device, the chair can be immersed in the water and float gently with the tide. There isn’t a more relaxing way to enjoy a summer day than spending it on the beach.
Due to the overwhelming demand for the program, the organization launched the SMILE Mass Floating Beach Wheelchair Awards Program, which allows towns and cities to apply for their floating beach wheelchair. Officials associated with the city or town, or residents could apply for the award to make their beach location more accessible.
SMILE Mass recently presented new chairs to the towns of Newburyport, Amesbury, Manchester by the Sea, and the Massachusetts Audubon Society in Barnstable with additional chairs to be gifted to Easton, MA, Nahant, and Standish ME in the coming weeks.  Due to the success of the program, the town of Dennis added 20 new chairs to their beaches.
“We are grateful to beach and recreation director Dustin Pineau for being such an active proponent of accessibility. To say we have had success is an understatement – with the support of SMILE Mass, it is clear that the town of Dennis understands the importance of the program as they retire older chairs and consistently strive to make their fleet better.”
“We present the chairs surrounded by some excitement. It’s a big event when accessibility is introduced or expanded in an area, and the decision of the town or municipality to promote accessibility should be celebrated. People with disabilities have the same rights as others, and enjoying a day at the beach is not just a luxury but a right that anyone should be able to experience. We recently had wonderful events in Newburyport and Amesbury where a large contingent of townspeople with and without disabilities came to cheer on the town’s commitment to accessibility.” 
You can find a list of other participating beaches where the SMILE Mass chairs are located at https://smilemass.org/initiative/beach-wheelchairs/.
SMILE Mass also operates a free equipment loaner program for families with disabled family members who may be going on a day, week, or extended vacation. 
“The loaner program was started as an extension of the beach wheelchair program, explained Lotte. “Once word got out about the beach wheelchairs we were donating to public beaches, people started calling because they vacationed in an area that did not yet have one of the donated chairs.”
To help alleviate that issue, SMILE Mass started a loaner program out of Sudbury, Massachusetts. Families can borrow adapted equipment to take anywhere. The inventory includes floating beach wheelchairs, a bath chair with a back, a blue Freedom running stroller, a Hoyer lift, portable ramps and so much more. Any of these items can be borrowed to help families enjoy a day of recreation or a vacation away from home with the right amenities.
SMILE Mass also owns a fully accessible vacation home on the beautiful Truro beach in Massachusetts, providing families with disabled loved ones a much-needed break and an inclusive environment to create lasting memories. The handicap-accessible beachfront condo sits just 75 feet from the ocean and allows accessibility for any family traveling with loved ones with disabilities. The condo sleeps six, with a private beach, two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a roll-in shower, adapted equipment with a universal design flair and all exterior doors have ramps to allow easy access for those
Club SMILE Mass, the organization’s fastest-growing program to date, consists of hybrid classes to stimulate clients with disabilities both mentally and physically. Classes include access to one-on-one gym and swim or small group classes, swimming classes at Atkinson Swimming Pool in Sudbury, and seven-day-per-week access to any LA Fitness in Massachusetts. The program also includes in-person social groups, including music therapy, book club, storytime, bingo, small group workout classes, bike evaluations via Zoom, and more. A physical therapist performs the bike evaluations. All trainers of Club SMILE Mass are specially trained to work with people with disabilities.
“We have received dozens of inquiries from families and organizations struggling with the lack of available services due to the labor shortage in the healthcare sector. These services were previously available to this vulnerable population but dried up during Covid,” continued Diomede. “Through Club SMILE Mass, we provide much-needed daily activities with a focus on movement. There are currently no existing clubs for someone with disabilities, which is a huge problem, and this is why Club SMILE Mass has become so popular.”
SMILE Mass plans to purchase land, which will be the home of “Club SMILE Mass, Community within a Community,” to help bring a sense of equity and inclusion to the severely disabled population in MetroWest.   “Our goal is to create a hub that becomes the leading source of a well-rounded program that takes clients after school age and well into adulthood. Our clients never age out of the program.”
“We have been working to reach an agreement with the owners of a property in MetroWest to complete the acquisition of the property. The property will allow us to bring our Club SMILE Mass program in-house and provide immediate relief to thousands of families in Massachusetts currently without services. This is why fundraising is especially critical,” explained Ms. Diomede.  Every dollar raised is something we didn’t have prior. Each donation will make a profound difference directly into the community
“This is our biggest undertaking yet,” continued Lotte. It is an opportunity for those who believe in equity and equality to resolve a national crisis following the pandemic. We are a grass-roots organization that receives no state funding. All our programs are made possible through grants, fundraising, annual sponsorships, and donations by those who know of all the good SMILE Mass does for the population of the disabled and their families.”
We rely on our existing donors, new donors, and sponsors to take us through each phase of the three-phase Capital Campaign. There is a donation level for everyone, regardless of your financial means.” To donate to the Capital Campaign or any of our programs, visit the SMILE Mass website at smilemass.org or call Lotte at 617-967-7755. 
About SMILE Mass: Small Miracles in Life Exist (SMILE Mass) is a 501 C3 non-profit organization dedicated to helping families raising children or adults with disabilities enjoy happy, healthy memories through vacation and recreation experiences. For more information, visit www.smilemass.org

FREE - Hanneke Cassel Concert to Benefit Emmanuel Orphanage, Haiti

Hanneke Cassel joined by Christopher Lewis and Jenna Moynihan to create an evening of amazing live music. Free concert with donations accepted to support Emmanuel Orphanage in Titanyen, Haiti through partnership with Mission of Hope. Come support this great cause and learn more about what is going on at Emmanuel Orphanage and Haiti in general. Special report from Samuel Lucien of MOH.
Immanuel Church has supported this orphanage for 10 years.
Fri, Jun 21, 2024 at 7:00 PM
Immanuel Church, 301 Boston Rd, Chelmsford, MA, 01824

Folk Music Open Mic at CCA

Once a month we are pleased to present FOLK MUSIC Open Mic. Join Doug and Friends to listen to great music! Full bar and snacks available. Donations accepted. Next one is Monday, June 24th, at 7:00 p.m. - sign up at 6:30 p.m. to play or just come to listen!

Chelmsford Children’s Chorus Looking for Singers

 
For their inaugural 2024 - 2025 season, The Chelmsford Children’s Chorus is accepting dedicated singers from Chelmsford and surrounding communities. We are excited the chorus is beginning their journey at The Chelmsford Center for the Arts.
Auditions are not required, but students should participate in their school’s chorus, or at minimum, be enrolled in a general music course.
Starting in September, the chorus will rehearse on Thursdays from 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM at the CCA.
The registration fee for the season (September - April) is $295.
Finance is never a barrier to participation. There are a few scholarships available thru the generosity of the Dacey Zouzas Endowment for the Arts. Please contact the chorus if you require financial support: info@chelmsfordchildrenschorus.org
More information about the chorus can be found on their website: www.chelmsfordchildrenschorus.org

Draper and Friends at the CCA!

 
June 28th at 8:00 p.m. - Pre-show open mic at 7:00 p.m.
Draper & Friends is back with another hilarious lineup of local rising stars and nationally touring comedians who have been featured on Comedy Central, NBC, Funny or Die, SiriusXM, & more! Hosted by Chelmsford native, Janelle Draper, who won the LA Comedy Festival and has opened for Jay Leno, Arsenio Hall, David Spade, Nikki Glaser & more. Don't miss this incredibly special evening filled with nonstop laughs, unforgettable memories and wildly talented comedians, featuring Ron Draper, Kevin Turner, Rollin Atkinson, Gabi Hajos & Jeremy Pearson.
Grab tickets today because they always go fast! Come for the laughs & stay for the amazing vibes! Purchase tickets before June 21 and they are only $15.00 for early bird special - after that they are $20.00 at the door or online after June 21st!
Chelmsford Center for the Arts is located at 1A North Road, Chelmsford

It’s a Barn Party Petting Zoo!

 
Come gallop on over to Bierman Autism Centers – Bedford for our FREE Sensory-Friendly Petting Zoo! From fuzzy bunnies to gentle goats, it's time for an afternoon filled with delightful creatures and fun activities.
When: Sunday, June 30, from 1-3 pm
Where: 23 Crosby Dr., Suite 300, Bedford, Massachusetts 01730
Spaces are limited for this special encounter with the cutest barn animals. Secure your family's spot now by RSVPing below. Don't miss out on this memorable animal adventure!
RSVP Today! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/barn-party-petting-zoo-tickets-919923414697?aff=CommunityCalendars

Summer Solstice Fete with Swing, Blues, & Jazz

 
DATES: SATURDAY, June 22 (Raine date June 23) TIME: 1 to 4 pm
PLACE: BOUTWELL HOUSE, 172 MAIN STREET, GROTON

Summer Solstice Fete with Music by the Hot Club of Pepperell
Groton History Center throws open its doors and welcomes the public to a Summer Solstice Party with music, light refreshments, and convivial conversation at the Boutwell House, 172 Main Street, on Saturday, June 22 from 1 to 4 pm. (Rain date, June 23.) All are welcome to this free event.
Music on this summer afternoon will include Jason J-Bob Eisenberg (guitar/vocals) & Dennis Lefty Poitras (bass/percussion) in cahoots with swing/jazz violinist Nick Norman and reed man, Hans Betancourth (saxes/clarinet). Together the quartet promises a cool repertoire of popular and obscure Jazz, Swing, and Blues from the Great American Songbook (1920s -1950) with the occasional Tango.
Inside the exquisitely restored 1851 Boutwell House visitors will discover not only the one-time home of Governor George S. Boutwell (1818-1905) and family but a museum of rare New England antiquities. Among them: paintings by the West Groton native and famed Impressionist Edmund Tarbell (1862-1938); a stunning group of shorebirds, hand-carved by the late Groton School teacher and local conservationist, Harvey Sarggison (1902-1987); a collection of pewter from the original Groton Inn, and much more. Behind the house, Georgie’s Garden (originally conceived by the Governor’s daughter, Georgianna Boutwell (1843-1933) is currently enjoying a renaissance under the care of horticulturist Karen Brackett of Groton. Take time to stroll the paths through graceful lupine and other plantings, sit a while on one of several benches, and enjoy the view of Gibbet Hill—one of Groton’s and the state’s most distinctive geologic features.
The Summer Solstice party is free and open to the public, thanks to the Groton Commissioners of Trust Funds, grants, and corporate and private donations. For more information visit grotonhistory.org; grotonhistory.org/Facebook, or call 978-448-0092. Universal access is available throughout the first floor and gardens.

American Radio Relay League 2024 Field Day

 
On June 22 and 23, the Westford Police Amateur Radio Team, PART, (http://www.wb1gof.org/) will be participating in the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) 2024 Field Day (https://www.arrl.org/field-day). This is the single most popular on-the-air event for the ARRL. Thousands of radio amateurs gather with their clubs, groups or simply with friends to operate from field locations, to practice our emergency preparedness skills and showcase amateur radio to the public.

During this event, members of PART will be communicating with other amateur radio operators from across North America and around the world. We will be showcasing 7 different live amateur radio stations each using a different amateur radio communication technique. One of the stations will permit you to actually operate on the air, under the supervision of a licensed amateur radio operator!

Come join us at the Concord Rod and Gun Club (https://concordrodandgun.com/) at 74 Strawberry Hill Road in Concord, MA from 2:00 PM on Saturday June 22 through 12:00 noon Sunday June 23. It’s free and open to the public.

NRWA Eco-Adventure Summer Survival Fun Week for 11 to 15 Year Olds

 
The Nashua River Watershed Association (NRWA) invites 11 to 15 year olds from all communities to participate in our Summer Survival Fun Week, a four-day program based at the NRWA River Resource Center, 592 Main Street (Rt. 119) in Groton, MA. This program will run from Monday June 24th through Thursday June 27th, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day
We’ll venture into the woods, fields, and hills of Groton hiking, tracking, and building shelters. We’ll spend a full day canoeing on the Squannacook River.  During these adventures, participants will learn outdoor survival skills, study local plant and animal life, and engage in team building games.
All activities are guided by NRWA’s professional educators and naturalists, including Stacey Chilcoat, our River Classroom Director. If you love outdoor exploration, new challenges, and making friends, we hope you’ll join us.
The fee for this 4-day program is $300 per person for NRWA members and $330 per person for non-members; $150 per person deposit required.  Pre-registration is required; limited spaces available. Register online today at www.nashuariverwatershed.org, under Upcoming Programs. For more information, please contact Stacey Chilcoat, NRWA River Classroom Director, at (978) 448-0299, or email registration@NashuaRiverWatershed.org.
The Nashua River Watershed Association is a non-profit environmental organization providing water and land protection, climate impact resiliency, and education programs to 32 communities in the Nashua River Watershed.  Learn more at: www.nashuariverwatershed.org.

Family Book Club

The Lutheran Church of the Savior is beginning a book club for families. We will begin with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. Each family will receive a free copy of the book at our organizational meeting Saturday June 22nd at 1pm. We will then meet weekly each Saturday at 1pm, June 29th through July 13th. Bring the family for a fun time exploring Lewis’ world of Narnia!
Contact Al Drehman if you have questions: 978-256-4539
Lutheran Church of the Savior
426 Davis Road, Bedford, MA
Mcc college for kids2 su24

Kids Love Variety of Programming Offered at MCC’s College for Kids Summer Camps


This summer, Middlesex Community College’s College for Kids program is debuting a variety of new classes. In MCC’s summer programs, kids ages 8 to 17 engage in interactive activities to explore future careers, learn new skills, meet new friends, and boost self-confidence.
“I loved the variety of things we did in aviation camp,” said Charlie Dugan, a 10-year-old College for Kids student from North Andover. “We did a lot of hands-on experiments. We used toy planes, paper planes and simulators. The instructor John was very nice and very understanding. I’m looking forward to doing more outdoor experiments this year and to trying another MCC camp.”
College for Kids classes run July 8 to August 8, featuring subjects including Ace Aviation, All About Science, Coding, Dungeons and Dragons, Cakes and Cupcakes, Creative Drawing and Exploration Art Studio.
New programs debuting this summer include subjects in science, game design, improv, dance, and Taylor Swift. In Curious 4 Science Concepts, students have the chance to perform experiments, including a lava lamp and microscopic observation of plant and animal cells. A game design course allows students to build, design and look into translating games into digital formats. Skills include planning out a timeline, playtesting, design and implementation.
The new On the Spot Improv teaches young students the basics of improv through playing games and creating scenes. Skills include active listening, quick thinking and imagination. Students in the dance bootcamp learn the fundamentals of improv, as well as a pom dance, hip hop, and one they create together throughout the week, ending with a group performance.
MCC’s new (NOT SO) Cruel Summer focuses on the songs and sensation of Taylor Swift. Fans will take a creative writing-based deep dive of the artist’s greatest hits, analyzing the poetry behind her work. There will be the opportunity to listen to songs, watch music videos, and make friendship bracelets.
“We are thrilled to offer a line-up of popular returning and new and exciting programs this summer,” said Ellen Wright, MCC’s Assistant Director of Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development. “While our students enjoy collaborating with their friends on topics they wouldn’t normally learn in school, they also gain skills that develop their academic interests that may plant the seeds for potential future careers.”
Programs are taught by public school teachers and expert professionals on MCC’s Bedford and Lowell campuses. Featuring five weeks of full- and half-day programs, Monday through Thursday, full-day programs run 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and half-day programs run 9 a.m. to noon or 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Students who take two half-day programs to make a full day can stay on campus for lunch in between the two sessions. For more information, visit www.middlesex.mass.edu/collegeforkids/ or email CollegeForKids@middlesex.edu and call 781-280-3663

Save A Life Free Narcan Training

 
Presented by the Chelmsford Health Department
What You’ll Learn:
  • What Opiods are
  • How to administer Narcan
  • Xylazine and Fentanyl facts
Who Should Attend:
  • Teens
  • Parents
  • Community Members
When and Where:
June 25th from 6-6:30pm at Chelmsford Town Hall Fire Training Room
How to register:
Call Taryn or Darcy at the Chelmsford Health Department 978-250-5241 or email Taryn: tangel@chelmsfordma.gov

Juneteenth Celebration

Chelmsford Town Common
June 22
11:00 am-3pm
Rain Location: Chelmsford Senior Center, 75 Groton Road, Chelmsford
Music and Dance Performances
Minority-owned Vendors with Art, Quilts and Clothing
Chelmsford Pop-Up Mobile Library with Books by Black Authors
Diverse and Delicious Food
Fun for the whole family and our community!!
Chichi enu

Acton to Host Free Concert Featuring Artist-In-Residence Chichi Enu

ACTON Town Manager John Mangiaratti is delighted to announce a special event, "Untold Stories," featuring artist-in-residence Chichi Enu on Friday, June 21, from 7-8:30 p.m. at the NARA Amphitheater.
This free concert is open to the public and promises an inspiring evening of music and storytelling.
Chichi Enu, an inspirational speaker, classical crossover singer, songwriter, and non-practicing attorney, will perform works by BIPOC and LGBTQ+ classical composers and mainstream artists, intertwined with inspiring stories of their journeys. Chichi’s own path to embracing her true self and focusing on her artistic talents serves as a testament to her empowering message.
"We are thrilled to host Chichi Enu and provide this enriching experience for our community," said Maura Haberman, Event & Program Coordinator. "Her performance will not only entertain but also inspire and encourage self-reflection and growth."
Acton's Economic & Community Development Director Julie Pierce said, "“This event is the latest in the public art initiatives of Acton’s Economic Development Office. Public art increases enjoyment of the area and serves as an invitation to visit all of the shops, recreational opportunities, cultural outlets and more in Acton. We are so excited to present this first of it’s kind event featuring a multilingual, interactive Opera Concert."
Event Details:
  • Date: Friday, June 21
  • Time: 5:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Location: NARA Amphitheater, 71 Quarry Road, Acton
  • Admission: Free, general admission, lawn seating. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets or chairs.
Additional Information:
  • Food and Beverages: A food vendor will be onsite offering grilled items, snacks, beer, wine, and soft drinks.
  • Parking: Free onsite parking is available, including handicap parking. Please follow event parking signs.
  • Rain Plan: In case of rain, the event will be moved to Acton Town Hall, 472 Main St. Note that seating is limited at this venue and will be on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Eco-Friendly Initiative: The event supports Acton's "Leave No Trash Behind" campaign. Attendees are encouraged to keep the park clean and eco-friendly.
Chichi Enu's journey from practicing law to becoming a celebrated performer is marked by her dedication to helping others trust their inner guidance and embrace their true selves. Her career breakthrough as Acton’s 2024 artist-in-residence includes several engagements, such as this Keynote Concert on June 21.
This event is made possible through the generous support of the New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) Public Art Learning Fund, with funding from the Barr Foundation, and grants from the Acton-Boxborough, Concord, Stow, Westford, Littleton, and Hudson Cultural Councils, supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.
For more information about this event and other upcoming events, please visit http://www.actonma.gov/business.

There’s Always Something Happening at the PCA

 
Thursday Night Sing & Jam
Thursdays, 7-10pm. Bring your instrument and/or voice and join the Sing & Jam fun! $5 suggested cover for drop-in programs. This is an on-going weekly event. Coming up…6/20, 6/27, 7/4, 7/11, 7/25, 8/1, 8/8, 8/15, 8/22, 8/29. The PCA is located at 10 Lincoln Street, right on Westford Common. For information, visit pcawestford.org,


Open Mic Night:
Held on 2nd & 4th Sundays in a month at 6:30 pm during the season. Open Mic Night is for all ages and levels of experience. Sing a song, play a tune, or speak your truth. The mic is on and everyone is welcome. Special guests will also stop by for some added fun. $5 suggested cover for all drop-in programs. Future Date: 6/23 (Final event until Fall). The PCA is located at 10 Lincoln Street, right on Westford Common. For information, visit pcawestford.org,


3rd Friday Bluegrass Jam: June 21st
A community event open to the public, 7-10pm. Bring your banjo, fiddle, voice, or just come to watch  every 3rd Friday in a month! All are welcome and all have a great time. Future Dates: 7/19, 8/16, 9/20, 10/18, 11/15, 12/20. The PCA is located at 10 Lincoln Street, right on Westford Common. For information, visit pcawestford.org,
Bluegrass

The Ruta Beggars at PCA

WESTFORD: Appealing to traditional and progressive acoustic music fans alike, The Ruta Beggars combine bluegrass and early swing to create a timeless act filled with intricate vocal harmonies, fiery instrumentals, and plenty of fun. The Beggars will be playing the Parish Center for the Arts, 10 Lincoln Street, on June 28 at 7:30pm.  Tickets range from $12 (Card-to-Culture pricing) to $25, and are available by calling (978) 692-6333, or online at pcawestford.org.  BYOB and snacks for a full evening of entertainment!
The Ruta Beggars have been praised for their creative yet tasteful arrangements and charming performances. Since 2018 they have brought the joy of their live show to audiences across the US and Canada from festival stages to storied folk listening rooms and as support for legacy acts Lyle Lovett and Ricky Skaggs. The Beggars are 2019 Thomas Point band competition winners, 2023 IBMA official showcasing artists, Freshgrass Foundation commissioned composers, Freshgrass Award finalists, and Skyline Records artists. Best-of-friends since their inception, The Ruta Beggars are Micah Nicol (guitar), Trevin Nelson (banjo), Noah Harrington (bass), Sam Stage (fiddle), and Jean-Baptiste Cardineau (mandolin), who met through studying in Berklee College of Music's American Roots Program.
This event is honoring the Massachusetts Cultural Council "Card-to-Culture" program (https://massculturalcouncil.org/organizations/card-to-culture) with a special discounted ticket price available to card-holding members. C2C cards will be requested when you pick up your tickets at the box office.
Direct ticket link: https://parisharts.square.site/product/6-28-24-the-ruta-beggars/178
Facebook: facebook.com/ParishCenterfortheArts
Twitter: twitter.com/PCAWestford
Instagram: instagram.com/pcawestford

DUKE ELLINGTON TRIBUTE with AIDAN SCRIMGEOUR

WESTFORD: The Parish Center for the Arts will be offering an 11th hour addition to its 2023-24 season when favorite Aidan Scrimgeour returns with a Duke Ellington event on June 8 at 7:30pm! Kids of all ages are welcome. Tickets range from $10 to $25.  Seating will be cafe-style (tables). BYO food and drink. Doors open at 7pm. For more information, call (978) 692-6333 or visit pcawestford.org.
Everyone loves Aidan Scrimgeour’s annual “Charlie Brown Christmas Jazz Concert,” but Aidan is back with a Duke Ellington tribute concert to ring in the summer! The Mostly Aidans Trio, featuring Aidan Scrimgeour on piano and Aidan Cafferty on bass. Scrimgeour is a musician, composer and educator from Salem, MA based in Brooklyn, NY. After studying piano performance in the Contemporary Improvisation Program at New England Conservatory with Ran Blake and Hankus Netsky, he graduated with a B.A. in Performance & Representation from Tufts University. In 2020, Aidan co-founded Brooklyn Porch Music, an educational and performance collective that emerged from daily ritualistic concerts throughout the early months of the pandemic. This program provides free music lessons,ensembles and writing workshops for teens in South Brooklyn communities.
Aidan’s musical projects and collaborations incorporate elements of jazz, country, and Irish traditional music, among others. He has performed throughout the country with a variety of groups, playing piano, organ and accordion. In the words of Roy Nathanson of the Jazz Passengers, “the gentle and generous spirit of Aidan’s piano playing leaves you underestimating his remarkable attention to detail and the complexity of his melodic and harmonic ideas. I have been lucky to have played with some amazing players and composers in my 70 years and I can say that Aidan Scrimgeour is a very, very special musician.”
Direct Ticket Link: https://parisharts.square.site/pca-jazz-cafe
Facebook: facebook.com/ParishCenterfortheArts
Twitter:twitter.com/PCAWestford
Instagram:instagram.com/pcawestford

DINING FOR A CAUSE at The Pleasant Cafe, Ayer

 
Take the night off from cooking and come to The Pleasant Cafe at 7 Depot Square in Ayer on  Wednesday, June 12 from 5-8pm to support The Friends of the Ayer Library.
The Pleasant Cafe has generously partnered with the Friends to hold a Dining for a Cause event where they will donate a percentage of all dine in and pick up sales that evening. Help us make this a success by stopping by or picking up your delicious dinner while supporting a great cause. The Friends support the Ayer Library through fundraising which provides museum passes, summer reading programs, adult and children educational events and more!

THRIFTY THURSDAYS

 
Join us for Thrifty Thursdays every Thursday from 3-6pm at the West Acton Baptist Church. This Pop-Up Thrift Shop is sure to have a little something for everyone. We are located at 592 Massachusetts Ave in West Acton and the Pop-Up Thrift Shop is in our coatroom, entrance next to the elevator & Mini Food Pantry.

FIRST PARISH CHURCH is DONATING 3 BIRTHDAY PARTIES for CHILDREN in NEED

 
Many families struggle to offer their children the joyful birthday celebrations they deserve. First Parish Church of Stow & Acton (FPC) and FPC volunteer staff are offering 3 free parties, to occur between July 2024 and June 2025, to families that might not otherwise be able to have a party for a child. The youth at FPC have helped build a party “escape room” chest that’s available for birthday rentals. The parties are best suited for children and youth between 8 and 17. This includes the use of FPC’s Vestry, including tables and chairs for up to 20 people (though the escape adventure is recommended for 5 to 10 participants), and access to a small kitchen. The parties also include an FPC volunteer who will open and close the building and act as “games master” for the escape adventure. Pirate-themed Escape Room in a Chest: ● 12 puzzles to solve (suited to ages 8 to adult) ● A 60- to 90-minute adventure (approximately) ● Teams of 5 to 10 people Typical Party ● 2 hours total ● Up to 90 min in Escape Game ● Remainder of time in Vestry Cafe for any food, cake and beverages you bring. The value of the party is $300 ($250 rent and $50 sexton fee). Low-income families and foster families are encouraged to apply using the URL below. At least one adult must be present throughout the party. Tinyurl.com/FPCpiratebday Applications will be reviewed by FPC’s minister. Requests will be accepted until Saturday, June 15. Recipients of the parties will be contacted by Sunday, June 30, 2024. FPC is located at 353 Great Rd., Stow. Its facilities are wheelchair accessible.

WOMEN WORKING WONDERS FUND SEEKS REQUEST for PROPOSALS for 2024 GRANT CYCLE

 
Lowell, Mass. – The Women Working Wonders Fund (WWWF), a permanently endowed fund of the Greater Lowell Community Foundation, requests proposals for this year’s grant cycle that opens on May 20. The Women Working Wonders Fund will award five (5) grants of up to $10,000 each to programs/projects that impact the lives of women and girls while advancing an organization’s mission.
WWWF provides annual grants in three key areas: assisting women in transition, providing leadership development for women and girls, and contributing to the beautification of the environment benefitting women and girls. Started in 2004 by a group of 72 women who each gave $500, the WWW Fund has now grown to more than $1.5 million. Since its inception, WWWF has distributed grants totaling over $444,000, creating positive change in countless lives in Greater Lowell.
To apply for the Women Working Wonders Fund grant, visit www.glcfoundation.org. The deadline to apply is Thursday, June 20, 2024, at noon. For more information on the Women Working Wonders Fund, visit womenworkingwondersfund.com or contact womenworkingwondersfund@gmail.com.

FRIENDS of the J.V. FLETCHER LIBRARY FOUNDATION LAUNCHES the 1,000 HOMES CAMPAIGN

 
Contact: Mary Anne Seraphin, foundation@westfordlibraryfriends.org, 978-692-6345

The J.V. Fletcher Library is undergoing an historic expansion and renovation and is appealing to the public for support. The Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library Foundation – as part of its commitment to raise $1.5 million of the overall cost of the building project – has launched the 1,000 Homes For The Library Campaign. With this initiative, the Foundation is asking 1,000 Westford households to pledge $1,000 each (either as a one-time payment or spread over three years with three yearly payments of $333.) If 1,000 homes participate, the Foundation can raise $1,000,000 towards its goal. In addition, the Foundation has a number of naming opportunities available in the expanded, renovated building. The first 100 donors who give as part of the 1,000 Homes Campaign will receive – if they wish – a lawn sign to show their support. Every donation given, no matter the amount, will be recognized on what the Foundation is calling the Wall For All in the renovated library. The Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library is an independent, registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization #22-2675998. Donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. Want more information? Go to www.westfordlibraryfoundation.org.

COUNTRY FAIR on CHELMSFORD COMMON

Time is winding down. Don’t miss your opportunity to join us at the July 3 & 4th Country Fair on Chelmsford Common. Vendor spaces are filling up fast. If you’re interested in securing a space email us at Chelmsfordlionsclub@yahoo.com and we will send you the information.
Each year the Chelmsford Lions Club sponsors this event. All funds raised from space fees is given right back into the Chelmsford community through our service projects.
Please join us at the Fair.

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT SHOW ANNOUNCED with Tom Richardson & Aaron Bilodeau

 
WESTFORD: The Parish Center for the Arts (PCA) is focusing on supporting local artists this June. On June 14 at 7:30pm, enjoy an eclectic mix of styles when singer/songwriter Tom Richardson and electronic indie funk artist Aaron Bilodeau take the PCA stage!  Tickets range from $10-$18 and are available by calling (978) 392-6333 or online at pcawestford.org. The PCA is a BYOB & food facility, so pack a picnic and plan out a full evening of entertainment at 10 Lincoln Street in Westford.
Folk-Americana singer-songwriter Tom Richardson found his way back to music after a long, more traditional career. With a style rooted in the 1970’s music of artists such as James Taylor, John Prine, and Glen Campbell, Tom features acoustic guitar over a modern, folk-country, Americana sound. His warm and expressive voice serenades with stories of life, love and longing. Tom’s second act as a musician and actor brings a lifetime of perspective and some wisdom to poignant and vibrant stories of a shared experience.
Aaron Bilodeau is known for his mastery of multiple instruments. He captivates audiences by seamlessly combining singing, bass guitar wizardry and synth manipulation — all performed with a flair that truly sets him apart through his unique blend of electronic indie funk. Aaron has demonstrated his creativity and talent through original works, culminating in the release of four solo albums. His latest, "Drone at Home," showcases his evolving musical vision and experimental spirit. With each performance, Aaron invites listeners into his musical universe, where boundaries are blurred and sonic landscapes are explored with boundless creativity.
When it comes to supporting local arts and artists, it's mutually beneficial. An exchange between artist and audience has rippling positive impacts on the individuals and the communities surrounding them. So visit a Gallery and/or take in a show. Make a donation. It fosters community.  It's good for the economy.  It's good for YOU!
Direct ticket link: https://parisharts.square.site/product/6-14-24-tom-richardson-aaron-bilodeau/179
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ParishCenterfortheArts
Twitter: www.twitter.com/PCAWestford
Instagram: www.instagram.com/pcawestford

ROUDENBUSH COMMUNITY MARKET COMING

 
The Roudenbush Community Market will commence on July 2nd, located at Fisher Way in Westford, MA. This vibrant Market will be open every Tuesday until September 10th, operating from 3 PM to 7 PM. Visitors can enjoy a variety of local produce, artisanal goods, and community activities.
**New Location** The Market has recently moved to a new, more spacious location on Fisher Way, next to Abbot Elementary School, providing ample parking and additional space for vendors and food trucks as well as being an area that is designed to be family-friendly, with facilities like nearby restrooms, wastebaskets, and space for kids to play and folks to socialize. We will still have the option to hold the Market in the gym of Roudenbush in case of bad weather!
This Roudenbush Community Market not only supports local vendors by providing them a platform to showcase their products but also fosters a sense of community among Westford residents. The relocation aims to create a more dynamic space for interaction and commerce, contributing to the market's growth and the vitality of the local community.

The Roudenbush Community Center is excited to introduce you to Daisy, our Market mascot! Daisy the cow will be hidden at a different vendor each week. Check out our social media for hints on where to find her. When you do, come to the Roudenbush table to win a prize! We have new and returning vendors!

COMMUNITY of SUPPORT HELPED COMMENCEMENT STUDENT SPEAKER FIND  HER PATH

 
For Jennifer Laing, from Venezuela and now living in Maynard, the people of Middlesex Community College made a positive impact on her college experience. A Liberal Arts and Sciences major, Laing is one of two graduation speakers representing the class of 2024 at MCC’s Commencement held on Thursday, May 23 at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium. “I am incredibly delighted to represent the student body at graduation,” Laing said. “The MCC community of faculty, students and staff members have made my experience here enriching, exciting and exalting. I hope I can deliver a message that can reciprocate their care and support.” Laing is honored to have been asked to speak at graduation. From classmates to professors, she sees her speech as an opportunity to give back to the people who inspired her. Calling the MCC community “generous, resourceful and very special,” she appreciated taking advantage of all of the opportunities available to her at Middlesex in and outside of the classroom. “I could not have anticipated the support I have received from faculty, peers and staff over the past two years,” Laing said. “I chose MCC because the school offers a great variety of online classes, but I stayed at MCC because every single human I have interacted with has impacted my journey in inspiring and encouraging ways.” The support Laing found at Middlesex started with her first ever professor, Dr. Denise Marchionda. By experiencing a welcoming environment, Laing felt more comfortable beginning her academic journey. With Dr. Marchionda’s guidance, Laing also pushed herself harder to “reach my fullest potential.” “She believed I could do great things here at MCC, and made me believe it too,” Laing said. “She continues to be a mentor as well as a source of motivation to keep going after my academic goals.” When Laing first started at Middlesex, her goal was to earn a college education. Unsure of what she wanted to study or pursue for a career, Laing’s husband recommended she start with general education courses. Exploring a variety of subjects helped her find her passion. She also gained a “well-rounded foundation” to help her develop goals and a plan for the future. An active community member at Middlesex, Laing enjoyed attending campus events and working as a writing tutor for MCC’s Academic Centers for Enrichment (ACE). Graduating with highest honors, she is a member of MCC’s Commonwealth Honors Program and Phi Theta Kappa, the honors society for two-year schools. As she looks forward to transferring to a four-year institution, Laing hopes to continue to use the knowledge, skills and confidence she found at Middlesex. At her new school, she plans to major in English and minor in Psychology. Laing emphasizes the value of having a community of supportive employees and classmates dedicated to her growth and development. As she graduates and continues on with her education and into the workforce, she hopes to take what she has learned from the college and apply it to her new endeavors. “Being a student at MCC has been a fantastic experience,” she said. “I have grown as a scholar, friend, mother and thinker because of my experiences and education here.”
Mcc megan guros s24

MCC COMMENCEMENT SPEAKER THRIVED in MCC’s LEARN & EARN PROGRAM


From childhood, Megan Guros, of Andover, has lived with a disability and a diagnosis of a rare disease that brought a life expectancy of 15 years. Medical advancements helped her survive, improved her quality of life, and inspired a passion for the field of biotechnology, which she pursued at Middlesex Community College. Guros is one of two graduation speakers representing the class of 2024 at MCC’s Commencement held on Thursday, May 23 at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium. “It is an immense honor and profound responsibility to be selected as a commencement speaker,” Guros said. “Given the struggles I have experienced with my health, I doubted my ability to ever graduate. This opportunity allows me to reflect on our shared experiences and the resilience we've demonstrated throughout our educational journey. It's a platform to express gratitude, share insights, and inspire my classmates as we all prepare to embark on our next chapters.” In MCC’s Learn and Earn Experience, Guros appreciated the “unique” opportunity to study while gaining relevant experience and supporting her family. Bringing firsthand knowledge to the company as a rare disease patient, Guros interned at Ultragenyx. She feels that the labs and classes as part of MCC’s Biotech program prepared her to be a productive member of her team working hands-on within the supply chain. “The internship has greatly contributed to my education by offering me real-world industry experience,” she said. “This helps me to know the right questions to ask for further clarification and assists me in seeing how everything we are learning comes together in industry.” One of the reasons Guros first chose to come to MCC was the diverse student body. She believes the “rich and vibrant learning environment” at the college provides an opportunity to work with and learn from people with different backgrounds, cultures and life experiences. Faculty and staff have also made a big impact on Guros’s time at Middlesex. By creating a safe space in which to learn, Dr. Mariluci Bladon, MCC’s Professor & Chair of Biotechnology, helped Guros feel comfortable asking for assistance and pushing herself to succeed. Guros also has guidance in the TRIO Program for Student Achievement, including from director Jennifer Stach. This network of support allowed her to make the return to college, knowing she has built-in help as she navigates her college experience and any challenges that may arise. “My experience at MCC has been transformative,” Guros said. “The faculty's engagement, the wealth of knowledge I have gained, and the unwavering support I have received have shaped my educational journey into one that is fulfilling and rewarding. Guros was President of MCC's Biotech Club and of the student chapters of the New England Parenteral Drug Association and the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering, as well as a member of Phi Theta Kappa, MCC’s Commonwealth Honors Program, and the National Society of Leadership and Success. Graduating with highest honors, she is now studying at Northeastern University on a scholarship to earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees. She credits MCC for helping to build a foundation for her future. “I have found my path and I am excited again for the future,” she said. “MCC has helped me move forward in my life from a place of merely surviving to a course on which I am thriving. I am determined to do the biotech program proud and have a real impact in the industry.”

CHELMSFORD COMMUNITY EDUCATION PRIVATE MUSIC LESSONS

Registration for Private Music Lessons through Chelmsford Community Education is now open.  The 5-week summer session runs from July 8th to August 9th and is open to students of all ages living in Chelmsford or outside of town for the same fee.
For more information or to register, go to ChelmsfordCommunityEd.com or call us at 978-251-5151