Westford/Littleton

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Current Edition - 05/27/22
Previous Edition - 05/20/22

HEADLINES

Editoriads (the action)
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Educate Yourself Before Westford’s Annual Town Meeting

WESTFORD:The most powerful way for Westford voters to directly impact how the Town runs itself and how it spends its money is to attend Town Meeting. And the best way to get the most out of Town Meeting is to attend the League of Women Voters of Westford’s Annual Town Meeting Preview on Thursday, June 2, being held virtually at 7pm. Click to register for the June 2 preview: Webinar Registration - Zoom

Town Meeting is the legislative branch of Westford’s government, and all registered voters may attend, speak, and vote at the next Town Meeting on Saturday, June 11. The meeting – being held on Westford Academy Trustees Field, 30 Patten Road – begins at 9am. (Rain date is Sunday, June 12 at 9am). Town Meeting has two primary responsibilities:
 
  • Establish an annual budget by voting to appropriate money for all town departments; and
  • Vote on the town’s local statutes, the bylaws.

At this year’s Town Meeting, voters will discuss and decide on 19 articles. During the League’s preview, town officials will go over each item – or article -- on the warrant, giving residents a chance to familiarize themselves before attending Town Meeting on June 11. Issues on this year’s warrant include using electronic vote tabulators at Town Meetings, establishing lower speed limits for some town roads, and authorizing a new HVAC system for the Cameron Senior Center. Questions can be submitted during the preview via chat. The preview will be recorded and made available online.

In addition to the preview, the League has a number of other resources to help residents educate themselves about Town Meeting. They include:
 

Still have questions? Go to the League’s website at Westford League of Women Voters

Spring into Summer Reading at the Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library Book Sale

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WESTFORD: The Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library Inc. is so excited to return to its 3-day book sale events. They will be holding a book sale on Saturday, June 4 from 10am to 5pm and Sunday, June 5 from 2pm to 4pm in the meeting room of the J.V. Fletcher Library at 50 Main Street.  Sunday’s sale will be a $5 bag sale. All materials will be offered at half price.

There will be a preview sale for Friends members only on Friday, June 3 from 6:30pm to 9pm.  Memberships will be available at the door.  Please note that scanners may not be used on Friday but are welcome on Saturday and Sunday. The sale will include thousands of books plus CDs, audio books, blue-ray discs, and DVDs. Credit card payments, checks and cash accepted.

The Library is looking for more books for this sale. Please consider donating your unwanted books, audio books, CDs, DVDs, or Blu-ray materials to the Friends for the direct benefit of the library and the community of Westford.  These materials can be dropped off at the left-hand door just inside the library’s rear entrance.  If the library is closed, just drop your donations in the collection box that is located near the back door of the library. Tax deduction forms are available at the library’s main desk.

The Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library appreciate your support. 100% of the proceeds from all book sales directly benefit our library unlike other organizations collecting book donations  that do not donate 100% of their proceeds. Approximately 95% of the books offered at these sales are donated by Westford residents.
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Michelle Willson & the Evil Gal Festival Orchestra at PCA

WESTFORD: Parish Center for the Arts at 10 Lincoln Street, continues its Blues Series with Michelle Willson and the Evil Gal Festival Orchestra on Saturday, May 21 at 8pm. Michelle's Evil Gal Festive Orchestra include renowned musicians Michelle Willson (vocals), Zac Casher (drums), Mike Mele (guitar), Shinichi Otsu (keys), and Scott Shetler (sax, clarinet, mandolin).

Known to blues lovers around the world as "Evil Gal" and acknowledged by aficionados of Jazz and Blues as a passionate and gifted performer, bandleader and songwriter, Michelle Willson has recorded and released 4 critically acclaimed albums for Rounder/ Bullseye Records. Before signing with Rounder, Michelle's group won a prestigious W.C. Handy award for best unsigned blues act as a result of their win at the Blues Foundation's International Blues competition and Michelle was later nominated for a (best female blues vocal) Handy alongside Etta James and Koko Taylor. For over 3 years, Michelle hosted 2 weekly programs, "Voices of Jazz" and "Jazz n' Blue" on one of the few remaining NPR music stations, WICN, in Worcester, MA. Learn more about this powerhouse vocalist and her band at - https://www.evilgal.com/music

Tickets are $25 General Admission; $21 PCA members/seniors, and available online https://westford.org/pca/events/michelle-wilson-and-the-evil-gal-festival-orchestra, or at door (cash/credit). Doors open at 7:30pm.  This event is BYOB (drinks and appetizers) with cafe-style candlelit table seating. Attendees must be vaccinated. Masks optional.
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PCA Art Gallery Welcomes  Mixed Media Artist Dan Roche as the May Artist of the Month

WESTFORD: The PCA Artist of the Month Gallery is pleased to welcome Lowell artist Dan Roche with an exhibit of his multi-media works.  Dan is a local artist who works in mixed media materials using metal leaf, pigment and resin on a wood base.  His subjects span the topics of aerial, geologic and oceanic art and abstracts.  He is a graduate of the Mass College of Art and Design in Painting and Sculpture and has been featured locally and  internationally in collections and exhibits, both as a solo artist and in group exhibits.  Upon graduation from the Mass College of Art, he was awarded the prestigious BERGER AWARD for painting.  Don’t miss this unique collection of multi-media art at the Parish Center for the Arts in May.  

The exhibition dates are from May 1 through 31. The Gallery will be open Sundays noon-2PM for viewing or by special appointment.  An artist’s reception will be held on May 8 from noon-3pm.  Roche can be contacted at drdr537@gmail.com.

Business in Your Community

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League of Women Voters’ Civic Social Features Access To Town Meeting Committee Progress Report

WESTFORD: Access to Town Meeting Committee Chair Diane Wood will present the committee’s research and recommendations at the League of Women Voters’ virtual Civic Social on Wednesday, May 18, at 7:30pm. Email info@lwv.westford.org to get the link to join the meeting.

Last September, the Westford Select Board appointed a committee of 11 residents to investigate and recommend actions the Town could take to increase attendance at Town Meeting. Recently, the Access To Town Meeting (ATM) Committee presented their recommendations to the Select Board. Residents have an opportunity to learn more about those recommendations – and the process the ATM went through at the May 18 session.

The ATM’s recommendations fall into several categories: make meetings shorter, more efficient, and predictable; mitigate common barriers to attendance; optimize general town communications; educate residents about Town Meeting; and longer-term recommendations. The ATM Committee solicited input from town residents through a Westford Community Survey – which yielded more than 800 responses – as well as input from a questionnaire from more than 40 other towns conducted through the MA Moderators’ Association. In addition, the ATM conducted in-depth interviews with a number of town officials.

Town Moderator Angela Harkness along with town leadership are currently reviewing the dozens of recommendations made by the ATM Committee with plans for implementation. Join the LWV of Westford on May 18 to learn more. For more information, check out the committee’s webpage, Access to Town Meeting Committee (westfordma.gov/1436)

Traveling Back Down Route  110 with Geoff Hall & Bob Spinozzi
(Video Premiere)

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WESTFORD: In 2011, Westford resident Geoff Hall, and Littleton resident Bob Spinozzi chronicled how businesses sprouted through the years along the Route 110 stretch from Littleton to Chelmsford. Eleven years later, Geoff and Bob teamed up again in a 2022 documentary of the further development and history of Littleton Road.

From a Westfit Club, a tennis and racquet Ball Club at 4 Littleton Road  to Kimball Farm, a great place for summer fun, your hosts Geoff Hall and Bob Spinozzi take you on a journey to discover how the farms of Westford’s Route 110 (Littleton Road) developed into the office and retail corridor that it is today. Enjoy the history, development and stories of the people who lived and worked along this four-mile stretch Sunday, May 15 from 1:30pm-3pm at the Westford Museum, 2 Boston Road.

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, they strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. They foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. They will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same.  For more information, visit www.museum.westford.org.
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Be A Delegate to the Westford Constitutional Convention!
Westford LWV, Historical Society Event Goes Back To 1787

WESTFORD: Picture this: the year is 1787. And you are a delegate at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia. James Madison of Virginia and Charles Pinckney of South Carolina have proposed that the Constitution include the so-called Federal Negative, which would give Congress the authority to veto any law passed by a state legislature. Madison considered this a critical safeguard against unchecked power at the state level. Pinckney, in turn, regarded the Federal Negative as “the cornerstone of an efficient national Government.” What would you do? How would you vote?

With the Supreme Court currently considering the states’ legislative authority to regulate abortions, the question “How much power should the federal government have over the states?” is as relevant and controversial today as it was in 1787.

Join the League of Women Voters of Westford and the Westford Historical Society and Museum Wednesday, May 11, at 7pm where participants – acting as delegates representing Westford’s villages – will debate the Federal Negative and the making of the U.S. Constitution. The discussion will be based on a Harvard Business School case study, which participants are asked to read prior to Wednesday evening. At the event – being held at the Westford Museum – delegates will discuss the impact of providing the federal government strong constitutional powers given the context of events in 1787. What should they do? What would you do?

Heather Carney, who teaches history and American government at Westford Academy, will lead the discussion. Last year, the League nominated Carney to be trained in the Harvard Case Study method. She has used it in her classroom this year, and next Wednesday she brings this case study method to the audience.

Participate and see how Westford votes! To register, and to access the case study pre-read material, go to Constitutional Convention at www.westford.org.

Fibers of Life, Textiles from the Westford Historical Society’s Collection with Penny Lacroix

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WESTFORD: On May 5 from 7-8pm at Westford Museum, 2 Boston Road, there will be an exhibition - Fibers of Life. This show and tell lecture is offered in cooperation with the Westford Museum & Historical Society. Their collection of local artifacts, from clothing and accouterments to linens and household items is typical of many New England towns. However, each one of these objects has its own unique and interesting story to tell. Penny Lacroix will highlight eight textile objects from the WHS collections. Each of the other pieces - some clothing, household items and accouterments - will be pulled from storage, where they are kept safe but are rarely seen. Attendees are limited to 15 guests. Those in attendance will be able to look at the objects up close and in-person while hearing the stories of their provenance here in Westford and how they were made. Register online at museum.westford.org.
 
"Each of these artifacts has a history here in town," said Penny, former director of the Westford Museum. "By looking at them and learning their stories, it connects us with the people who lived in Westford before us."
 
Museum visitors may already be familiar with the so-called Robinson Pincushion, which is on display in the Museum's Military exhibit. It was made by the wife of Col. John Robinson (our local Revolutionary War hero.) Although faded, there is much to be gleaned from this unique piece of everyday Westford history.
 
Presenter Penny Lacroix is a weaver, spinner, teacher, historian, manager, learner, creator and general lover of all things fiber. When she’s not actively learning something, she’s sharing with others in one way or another –making something by hand, demonstrating at historic events, or teaching a class. With past careers as an engineer, a mom, a museum educator and a museum director, combined with her hobby as a historical reenactor, her worlds collide in the creation of textiles and the study of historic textile tools. Penny is co-chair of the Nashoba Valley Weavers’ Guild and teaches weaving and spinning. She lives in Westford, MA with her husband and their furry friends.

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same. 

Businesses in Your Community

Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts/Littleton Host Awards Ceremony

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LITTLETON: Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts/Littleton will be hosting a high awards ceremony to honor the 2020-2022 classes of Gold, Silver, and Bronze Award Girl Scouts. The ceremony will be held on May 6, 2022 at 6:30-8:30pm in the Littleton High School Auditorium, 56 King Street. All are welcome to attend.

The Gold Award is Girl Scout’s highest achievement, available to girls in high school who drive sustainable change on issues in their community. Gold Award projects are led by a single Girl Scout with a minimum of 80 service hours. Ambassador Girl Scout Amalia Ficociello is the sole Gold Award recipient to be honored at this year’s ceremony. Amalia’s Gold Award project focused on helping children ease strong emotions when at the emergency room. She researched common emergency room medical procedures and worked with medical professionals to create information cards to help explain common emergency room procedures in a kid-friendly way. These cards can be used not only by children, but also by developmentally delayed persons and non-English speaking individuals. She also created welcome bags to help ease the strong emotions children may experience when entering the emergency room. 

Twenty-eight Cadette Girl Scouts who completed their Silver Award projects in 2020-2022 will be recognized. The Silver Award is the second highest award in Girl Scouts, available to girls in sixth, seventh, or eighth grades who work in a small group or independently to address an issue that they care about. Silver Award projects have a minimum of 50 service hours per team member. The problems addressed by the Silver Award recipients include protecting the local environment from littering, trash, and pollution, educating people about vernal pools, adding habitat for pollinators, bats, and birds, educating people how to care for new pets, reusing and recycling soccer equipment, teaching people how to fish, and teaching younger kids how to make healthy snacks.

There will be 19 Junior Girl Scouts who completed their Bronze Award projects in 2020-2022 who will be recognized. The Bronze Award is the third highest award in Girl Scouts, available to girls in 4th or 5th grade who work together as a troop to brainstorm, plan, and complete a project that benefits their community. Bronze Awards must have a minimum of 20 service hours per troop member. Bronze Award projects focused on creating life buckets for emergencies, preventing littering, teaching people how to reduce screen time, and documenting life in Littleton early in the Covid-19 pandemic.
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Celebrate the Earth with Westford Events and the Earth Day Festival

WESTFORD: Westford Climate Action in partnership with many other organizations has made plans for events to celebrate our planet and work for positive climate change.
 
All week: Children can make posters at home about Earth Day and take them to the Earth Day Festival on Friday, April 22, or make them at the Common on Earth Day, to be eligible for a free drawing for prizes.
 
Westford’s Earth Day Festival: Friday, April 22, from 3-5:30 p.m. on the Town Common.  Music, face painting, poster-making starting at 2:30, and see a display of Native American artifacts from the Westford Museum. Check out a Tesla. Pet a lamb, baby goat, a piglet, chicks, duckling, and baby bunny. A knowledgeable farmer will introduce the animals and help children feed, brush, and hold them. Tree seedlings will be given away and free drawings will be held for a composter and rain barrel. Come talk with experts on alternative energy, sustainability, heat pumps, recycling, solar energy, and Mass Save rebates. Speakers will also provide updates on the State’s and Town’s climate goals.
 
The final Saturday trail walk is at the Frances Hill Wildlife Sanctuary on April 23 at 9am (rain date April 24, 9am). Sponsored by the Westford Conservation Trust, Marian Harman will lead a nature walk, moving very slowly to identify wild plants and birds. The walk will be easy, but not entirely flat. Some areas may be wet. Bring binoculars if you have them. No dogs, please. Meet at the Frances Hill Wildlife Sanctuary sign across from 120 Lowell Rd. A map and write-up of the area can be found on the Westford Conservation Trust website WCTFrancesHillWalk.  Walk is free of charge; no sign-up required. For more information, call Marian at 603-533-4095.
 
For more information on all of Westford Climate Action’s events, please visit westfordclimateaction.org/events/.
 
The Healthy Westford Committee encourages residents and workers to do a small task to help the earth and our lovely town to recover from the accumulated litter formerly hidden by snow. HWC is encouraging folks to walk around their neighborhood or business grounds anytime close to Saturday, April 30, and pick up litter. Please dispose of properly by recycling or in the trash.

BSA Troop 437 Bike & Spring Sporting Goods Sale, April 30

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WESTFORD: BSA Scout Troop 437’s annual Bike & Spring Sporting Goods Sale is back in 2022!  The sale will be held on the Westford Common, at the corner of Main and Lincoln Streets, on April 30 from 9am to 1pm, rain or shine.  Shop gently-used bikes and Spring sporting goods, including bikes of all sizes, camping gear, accessories for baseball, lacrosse, tennis, soccer and other Spring & Summer sports, exercise equipment, boating gear, canoes, kayaks and much more!  Cash payments are preferred; Venmo is also accepted.  Proceeds support Troop camperships and activities.

The Troop accepts donations and consignments for the sale. Donate your gently-used Spring and Summer sports goods and bikes, or consign them and earn 75% of the selling price.  Donations/consignments accepted April 29 from 6-8 PM at the American Legion Post 437, 114 Dunstable Road or April 30 from 7-9am on the Westford Common. There is a consignment fee of $1 per item, with a $5 maximum per household. Unsold items should be picked up on April 30 from 1-2pm; any unclaimed items will be donated to charity.

Email bikesale@westfordtroop437.us with questions or to coordinate a donation drop-off or pickup.

Troop 437 is a medium-sized, Scout-led troop with about 45 boys and girls age 12 to 18 from Westford, Chelmsford and other surrounding towns.  We meet weekly on Thursday evenings in Westford during the school year and have monthly outings, including camping, hiking, biking, kayaking, sailing, zip-lining and more.  Crews from Troop 437 have completed BSA High Adventure trips to Seabase and Philmont, including a Philmont crew in August 2021.  Learn more about Scouting and Troop 437 at www.WestfordTroop437.us.
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Littleton Lyceum Announces Archaeological Program

LITTLETON: It may look like a pile of stones in the woods, but it may be a Native American lithic structure! The Littleton Lyceum presents its final program of the season on April 29 at 7:30pm in Littleton High School’s Performing Arts Center on 56 King Street, with a look at local Native American archaeological sites. Harvard University-trained archaeologist Kimberly Connors will discuss features in our local landscape that were of importance to indigenous people who occupied this area for thousands of years. Admission at the door is $8 for individuals; $5 for seniors & students; $25 for families. Masks are no longer mandatory for admission to the High School Auditorium. For more information, visit www.littletonlyceum.org.
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"The Power of Angels" 2022 Kitty Angels Fundraiser

AMHERST, NH: Plans are in the works for another fabulous fundraiser for Kitty Angels, Inc. This year’s event will take place on April 30 and May 1 from 9am-5pm. The kitties and vendors have taken the necessary precautions and are excited to have you get out of the house and come visit with them  for some fabulous finds, great “free” entertainment and most important of all, to help Kitty Angels! The weekend festivities are being held at Treasures Antiques, 106 Ponemah Road (Rt. 122).

Look for all your favorite vendors, including artist Eric Nickola, dba WolfpacStudios, Artist Lori-Ellen Budenas of Respect the Wood, Monica Gesualdo of Trading Faces, Food Vendor  B’s Grumman Grub, Jewelry designers - Freedom Jewelry & Heart’s Design Jewelry. Forever Clean Soaps, Morel Woodworking, Baby Snuggz, SoGo Metal Art, Scroll-N-Tole, Happy Cat Creations, Vinyl Revival, Dusty Finds, The Spirit of Cacao, Puckerbrush Life, Anthony Acres, Color Street, Paws & Spas, Heavenly Goddess, Usborne Books, Fudge & Stuff, Lynda’s Felted Critters, Tupperware, Custom Care Designs, Amherst Animal Hospital and many more. Updates will be made when available. Interested in becoming a vendor at the event? Contact Sherry or Rick at (603) 672-2535.

The bands and soloists for the event, consist of keyboardist/band member Joey Peavey, Side Effects, Diamond Edge Band, North Sound Duo, Levi Maxwell with Jeff Damon, Sunset Rhythm and Wildwood.

Featured throughout the fundraising weekend and into the month of June, is an electrifying raffle of numerous and diverse prizes, all generously donated by local and national businesses, professional sports teams, private individuals and some of the awesome on-site vendors.

Kitty Angels, Inc. is the sole beneficiary of this event. They are a no-kill cat shelter and are made up of all unpaid volunteers, dedicated to rescuing stray and abandoned cats and kittens, furnishing them with treatment for injuries or other health issues and then placing them into new forever homes with compatible owners. They are a non-profit, 501(C) 3 charitable corporation where all donations are fully tax-deductible and every penny of every donation is used in the caring of cats.
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Westford LWV Voters’ Guide Available Now
Candidates’ Night Scheduled for Wednesday, April 13

WESTFORD: Election Day – Tuesday, May 3 – is fast approaching. Each year, the League of Women Voters of Westford sponsors a Voters’ Guide for the Town election. Candidates running for local office are asked to provide background information on themselves and to respond to questions pertaining to their candidacy.

This year, elections are being held for Board of Health, Housing Authority, Library Trustees, Planning Board, School Committee, and Select Board. Only two of these races – Board of Health and School Committee – are contested. The LWV Voters’ Guide enables residents to learn more about those running for public office before going to the polls. The LWV of Westford Voters’ Guide can be found on the League’s website, lwv.westford.org.

In addition, the League’s virtual Candidates’ Night will be broadcast live on Wednesday, April 13, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. All candidates – even those running unopposed – have been invited to participate. Go to lwv.westford.org to register. Candidates’ Night will also be recorded and made available on the League’s website and Westford CAT’s streaming video service and YouTube channel. The League welcomes and strongly encourages questions from the public. Questions can be submitted both during the broadcast and in advance online until Friday, April 8. Due to time constraints, not all submitted questions may be asked and the League may combine or edit questions for brevity and clarity. The link to submit questions can be found on lwv.westford.org. Jo-Ann Berry of the League of Women Voters of the Acton Area will be the event moderator.

Westford has changed its voting precincts to reflect the population changes as calculated by the most recent Federal Census. These changes include the addition of a seventh precinct and consolidation of polling locations. Precincts 1, 3, 4, and 7 will vote at Westford Academy. Precincts 2, 5, and 6 will vote at Stony Brook Middle School. Not sure of your precinct? Check the postcard you recently received from the Town Clerk’s office or go to wheredoivotema.com.

No-excuse vote by mail and early voting will not be available for this election. Those who can’t make it to the polls can vote absentee. Information about who can vote absentee and instructions for requesting an absentee ballot can be found at mailmyballotma.com or contact the Town Clerk’s office at townclerk@westfordma.gov or 978-692-5515.

The League of Women Voters of Westford is a nonpartisan political organization of women and men that encourages informed and active participation in government. The League does not support or oppose any candidate or political party. For more information, go to lwv.westford.org.

Middlesex West Chamber Announces May 5 Awards Gala & Scholarship Fundraiser Banquet

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WESTFORD: May 5 at 5:30pm, celebrate Cinco de Mayo with the Middlesex West Chamber of Commerce under the tent at the Westford Regency, 219 Littleton Road. You'll be helping to raise funds for local high school scholarships while helping to recognize this year’s awardees for outstanding achievements in the community.  Feast, rub elbows with neighbors, colleagues, and government leaders and applaud the people who
serve our community with greatness and style. And while you're there--don't miss the margaritas.  Sign up for tickets at www.mwcoc.com or call 978-263-0010 to make your reservation at $80 per person
individually and $600 per table.

Congratulations to the Middlesex West Chamber Awardees:
 
  • Business of the Year—Insulet Corporation, Acton
  • Community Service— Rotary Club of Acton-Boxborough
  • Chamber Presidential—Don Ludwig, Ludwig Agency, American National Insurance, Boxborough
  • Chamber Member of the Year— Tom Popson of Mortgage Network, Pepperell
  • Lifetime Achievement—George Duncan (pictured), Founder of Enterprise Bank
  • Lifetime Achievement—Tom Tidman, Town of Acton, NARA Park, Acton Arboretum
  • New Business of the Year—Voyager Publishing’s Discover Concord
  • Non-profit Business of the Year— Minute Man Arc, Concord
  • Restaurant of the Year—Concord's Colonial Inn
  • Retailer of the Year— The Silver Unicorn Bookstore, Acton  
  • Service to the Chamber—Jonathan Kerr, Chamber Executive Director Emeritus, Groton,
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Patriots Day Candlelight Tribute at Fairview Cemetery

WESTFORD: While the sun sets (6:30-8pm) on April 19, there will be a first-ever Patriots Day (April 19th) Candlelight Tribute in the Old Division of Fairview Cemetery, on the corner of Main Street and Tadmuck Road. In this unique self-guided stroll, you can access the service records of Westford’s Revolutionary War Patriots on your phone or tablet. There will be colonial interpreters to answer your questions stationed throughout the illuminated cemetery.

In the days, weeks, and months leading to April 19, 1775, Westford men were drilling and training on the Westford Common preparing to march on the alarm. The simmering tensions between the American colonists and the British government would reach its breaking point and the residents of Westford stood firm and made clear their intentions to support the colony.

Here are few of the soldier that answered the Alarm and marched to Concord on the Alarm of April 19, 1775, that are memorialized in Fairview Cemetery:
 
  • John Abbot (1743-1805) 2nd Lt, Westford’s First Foot Company
  • Thomas Cummings (1734-1818) 1st Lieutenant Westford’s Minute Company  
  • Hosea Hildreth (1744-1776) Corporal, Westford’s Second Foot Company
  • Jonathan Minot (1723-1806) Captain, Westford’s Second Foot Company.
  • Rev. Willard Hall (1703-1779) A Loyalist and minister to the First Parish Church of Westford
  • Thomas Greenough, Jr (1738-1775), refugee from Boston.

All these men impacted the history of Westford and ultimately the outcome of the war. This Patriots Day, pay homage to our Revolutionary War Patriots. A donation is requested of $5 per person/$10 per family. Rain date: Saturday April 23, 6:30pm.

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same.

Westford Climate Action Invites Everyone to April Earth Month Events

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WESTFORD: Westford Climate Action is holding events throughout the month of April to celebrate Earth Day! There will be nature hikes and walks every Saturday; children’s workshops about weather forecasting, recycling, and mushroom-growing at the J.V. Fletcher Library; litter cleanups; and a family-friendly Earth Day Festival.
 
The Festival will take place on Friday, April 22 from 3-5:30 pm on the Westford Town Common. Music will be provided by Oh Contraire and Momentum Rocks. The Animal Craze Traveling Zoo will allow children to feed, brush and hold a lamb, baby goat, piglet, chicks, ducklings, and baby bunnies. Children can make posters about Earth Day or bring their own and be eligible for a free drawing for prizes. Experts on alternative energy, sustainability, recycling, solar energy, and Mass Save rebates will be available. The Westford Museum will have a display of Native American artifacts. Several speakers will inspire and bring us up to date on the State’s and Town’s climate goals. 
 
Organizations partnering with WCA:  Westford’s Clean Energy and Sustainability Committee, Recycling Commission, First Parish Church United, J.V. Fletcher Library, League of Women Voters of Westford, Mass Heat Smart Alliance, Mass Save, Sustainable Westford, Westford Conservation Trust, Westford Museum and the Westford Boy Scouts.
 
Join in and learn how to reduce our carbon footprint and help preserve our planet. For more details, please visit westfordclimateaction.org/events.
 
Westford Climate Action is a grassroots organization of town residents who are concerned about the climate crisis. Our mission is to drive climate action. We promote sustainability and advocate on a local level for actions that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and safeguard the health of our community for future generations.
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Call for Art at the Reuben Hoar Library

LITTLETON: The Gallery Committee of Reuben Hoar Library invites artists to exhibit their work in the Library. The Gallery Once space is available for shows nine months of the year. Various 2-D media is welcome and must be firmly wired for display.  Artists need to submit a minimum of five samples of their work, an exhibit application and a waiver by June 6. The two forms are available at www.littletonlibrary.org under the "About Us/Gallery" heading. Please submit to chardy-faraci@littletonlibrary.org, or mail the forms along with CD/photos of your work to The Gallery Committee, c/o Reuben Hoar Library, 35 Shattuck Street, Littleton, MA 01460.  For more information check the library’s website at www.littletonlibrary.org or inquire at the circulation desk.
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The First Kennedys—The Humble Roots of an American Dynasty with Author Neal Thompson

LITTLETON: On March 29 at 7pm, explore the inspiring story of the poor Irish refugee couple who escaped famine, created a life together in a city hostile to Irish, immigrants, and Catholics, and launched the Kennedy dynasty in America.

Their Irish ancestry was a hallmark of the Kennedys’ initial political profile, as JFK leveraged his working-class roots to connect with blue-collar voters. Today, we remember this iconic American family as the vanguard of wealth, power, and style rather than as the descendants of poor immigrants. Meet the first American Kennedys -- Patrick and Bridget -- who arrived as many thousands of others did following the Great Famine -- penniless and hungry. Less than a decade after their marriage in Boston, Patrick’s sudden death left Bridget to raise their children single-handedly. Her rise from housemaid to shop owner in the face of rampant poverty and discrimination kept her family intact, allowing her only son P.J. to become a successful saloon owner and businessman. P.J. went on to become the first American Kennedy elected to public office -- the first of many.


This is a collaborative program with Reuben Hoar Library and the Tewksbury Public Library. To register for this Zoom event, visit https://littletonma.assabetinteractive.com/calendar.

History At PlayTM, LLC Chronicles Lost Legends of The Greatest Generation
World War Women: The Unsung Heroines of WWII - A One-Person Performance Honoring International Women Who Risked Their Lives to Defeat Fascism

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WESTFORD: History At PlayTM, LLC (HAP, LLC), has garnered nationwide applause for their Immersive Living History Experiences, chronicling the lives of legendary pioneers who changed society. World War WomenTM: The Unsung Heroines of WWII features HAP, LLC Founder and Artistic Director Judith Kalaora in a multimedia performance that recalls the triumphs of our greatest heroines. The solo performance follows courageous women who risked their lives to defeat Fascism in WWII. Blowing up rail tracks; descrambling German Enigma messages; and flying dangerous missions, these true stories are not for the faint of heart and may be the most influential and often forgotten victories of the war. This program was originally funded by the Bob Jolly Charitable Trust.

Enjoy this LIVE virtual event on March 29, at 7-8:30/PM ET. This live event brings the vibrancy of theatrical history direct to your home. Approximately 75 minutes, followed by real-time audience Q&A. Registration information is available through the Westford Museum and Historical Society’s website at www.museum.westford.org/events.

Josh Lederman, NBC News Political Correspondent, attests: “History At Play connects the dots between the characters that made up our past and the events they shaped that still influence our lives.”
History At Play™, LLC has been embraced by the historical, educational, and theatrical industries with high-caliber programs, offering a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to ask questions of influential and often forgotten historical figures. Appropriate for all ages.

About History At PlayTM, LLC:  HAP, LLC has garnered international attention for their one-person and ensemble Immersive Living History Experiences, chronicling the lives of influential and often forgotten figures. Since 2010, the HAP, LLC Troupe has brought the legacies of great heroines to life in museums, libraries, universities, historical societies, corporations, senior living communities, and schools across the United States. To learn more, or to book an in-person, virtual, or hybrid event, visit HistoryAtPlay.com call +1-617-752-2859, or across Socials @HistoryAtPlay.
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Summer Camp & Kids Activities Fair in Westford

WESTFORD: Local parents looking for information on summer camps and kids’ activities will find plenty of resources at the Summer Camp & Kids Activities Fair on April 3.  The Fair will take place at the Westford Regency Inn & Conference Center, 219 Littleton Road (Rt. 110) from 12-3pm.

Coordinated by Lowell Macaroni Kid, the Fair is free to attend.  Families can gather information and talk with representatives from local and overnight camps and summer programs as well as local schools offering year-round activities such as sports, STEM, coding, art and more. 

Camps exhibiting at the 2022 Camp Fair include local favorites such as Teamworks Acton, Camp Tahattawan in Littleton, Westford Recreation, Camp Grotonwood and Camp Massapoag as well as specialty and overnight camps such as Code Wiz, Camp Hawkeye, TA-DAH Studio of Dance and more.  Lowell Macaroni Kid also has an online Summer Camp Guide on its website (Lowell.MacaroniKid.com) as a resource for parents who cannot attend the Camp Fair. 

For a list of camps attending the Fair, please visit Lowell Macaroni Kid at Lowell.MacaroniKid.com.  Exhibitor requests and other requests for information can be directed to barbarae@macaronikid.com or (978) 239-3038.
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PCA Welcomes Wendy Prest as April Artist of the Month

WESTFORD: Parish Center for the Arts' Art Gallery welcomes pastel artist Wendy Prest as April Artist of the Month. The exhibition dates are from April 4-May 1. The Gallery will be open Sundays from noon-2pm. An artist’s reception will be held on April 10, noon-3pm.
 
Pastel works are called paintings rather than drawings. Although no brush is used and the pastel is applied as one might apply chalk or crayon, the end results look like paintings rather than drawings.Wendy has been painting with pastels for about 15 years, supported by a small group of local friends who are also pastel artists. She also belongs to an online group called How To Pastel, where artists share their current work and can give or request advice. She gives HTP lots of credit for improving her pastel skills. Prest is an avid photographer. “I have been a lover of beauty all my life, especially flowers. My photography enhances my pastel work and I usually paint from my own photos.” She has studied with Joelle Feldman, Robert Carsten, Karen Israel and Laura Pollak as well as taking courses at Riviere College in drawing. Prest has had several one-woman shows and has won numerous awards, including a first and a second prize in pastels at the Westford Regional Art Show at the PCA in years before Covid.
 
Wendy’s work can also be seen at www.wendyprest.com and she can be contacted at wendy.prest@gmail.com.

Interested in becoming the Westford Colonial Minuteman?

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WESTFORD: The Westford Minutemen/6th Middlesex Regiment will hold their annual recruitment and open house at the Westford Museum, 2 Boston Road, on March 27 from 1-3pm. Members will also be available to answer questions about their April’s 18th Patriot’s Day Col. John Robinson Trail march from Westford to Concord and other Westford Town events they participate in. Weather and ground conditions permitting, the Minutemen will also be practicing the manual of arms on the Westford Common. 

Today’s recreated Minuteman company is a relatively informal organization made up of individuals and families who are interested in 18th century life in New England. Founded in 1967, they have a long and proud history, and members participate in events that support our community.  There are no specific attendance requirements.  People of any age are welcome, although members must be 16 years of age and have parental consent.  Musicians who are interested in period fife and drum music are always in great demand and are encouraged to look into our hobby!

The only real requirement of the group is to acquire the proper period clothing and accouterments. Westford Colonial Minutemen have many friendly and knowledgeable members who are willing to help you become acquainted with 18th century clothing and can provide or direct you toward appropriate patterns.  Alternatively, we can suggest a number of establishments who can provide clothing for you.

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same. For more information visit our website at www.museum.westford.org.

End Hunger New England Announces Plan to Send up to 1 Million Meals to Ukraine & Refugee Centers

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PEMBROKE: EndHungerNE announced that it has started a funding campaign to package and ship up to one-million meals to Ukraine and refugee centers in surrounding countries. The plan is to raise $350,00 in the next 2 months. All of the money tagged for the Ukraine will be used for food. 

Matthew Martin, the organization’s Development Coordinator stated, “We have been working on this for a while and just coordinated with a shipping and distribution partner to get our meals overseas. The situation in Ukraine is dire, our volunteers and supporters have been asking if we were going to get involved – and the answer to that is YES! We’ll start packaging this weekend.”

“The financial and volunteer support we have experienced over the past two years has been incredible. Over 1200 volunteers are regularly showing up at our Pembroke facility – brownie troops, high schoolers and sports teams, local civic and church groups, seniors – it's just been amazing! The more funding we can acquire, the more meals our volunteers can pack.” 

To make a donation or volunteer, please visit www.endhungerne.org. Checks can be made out to The Outreach Program (parent non-profit of EndHunger NE) and sent to 93 Whiffletree Lane, Marshfield, MA 02050. Please write Ukraine on the memo line and please check with your company to see if they offer a corporate match or are seeking to support the mission of EndHungerNE.
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Volunteers Needed for Appleman Triathlon

LITTLETON: The Rotary Club of Littleton's annual Appleman Triathlon is being held on July 17, 2022.  This swim-bicycle-run event, which starts from the Littleton Town Beach, is the largest annual fundraiser for the Club, which donates 100% of the net profits to help a large number of nonprofit organizations achieve their goals throughout the year.  Besides that, it’s fun!

The Club is looking for lots of volunteers to make this event run smoothly.  Set-up on Saturday (July 16) and clean-up on Sunday afternoon (July 17) are always labor-intensive, and as the saying goes, “many hands make light work.”  There is some heavy lifting to be done on Saturday morning and Sunday afternoon and transportation of signs, fences, traffic cones etc. to and from the storage barn in Littleton to the Town Beach.  We need a truck to transport these materials, too. Feel free to invite friends, fellow workers, or family members to register at www.applemantriathlon.com/volunteer-2 to make this event a success! 

Some of the specific tasks include assisting with parking and traffic control; setting up signs, tents, tables, seating, fencing, and traffic cones;  registering participants and handing out "goody bags", runner numbers, and more to them; marking the bike/run paths; being posted in positions along the trail to make sure participants don't go astray; handing out water along the route; and making sure runners get water and a special gift at the finish line.   And of course everything that's brought to the Town Beach from the storage barn on Saturday has to be packed up and returned to the storage barn on Sunday. 

For more information about the Triathlon, please contact Judy Grande, Appleman Volunteer Coordinator at judygrande2016@gmail.com, or visit the Appleman website at www.applemantriathlon.com.

The Rotary Club of Littleton is a service club made up of men and women from the Littleton area.  The Club meets every Wednesday in the cafe at the rear of 1 Monarch Drive, Littleton (off Taylor Street).  Breakfast is available starting at 7:15am, and the meeting starts promptly at 7:30am.  If you would like to be a guest and learn more about Rotary, please contact our Club President, Lehel Reeves, at lehel.reeves@mac.com, or call 978-430-3305.

New Sunday Hours and New Exhibit “Hard Rock Mining” at the Westford Museum

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WESTFORD: The Westford Museum, located at 2 Boston Road is reopening Sunday March 6, from 1pm - 3pm with a new exhibit “Hard Rock Mining”.  Most everyone knows there were granite mines located throughout Westford, but what else was mined nearby and when? See and learn about the four commercially mined minerals of Southwestern New Hampshire: Mica – Quartz – Feldspar – and Beryl. Learn what they look like, what they can be used for, and the Gemstones they can become! The exhibit will run May-September 2022. Suggested donation $5 per person/$10 per family.  For more information, visit www.museum.westford.org.

This is the debut of Jim Pecora’s Mica Mine Schoolhouse’s “dynamite and blasting” exhibit!  This explosive display highlights the newest donations to Pecora’s Museum courtesy of the former “Thomas Company’s” of Spofford New Hampshire.  Carl Thomas was a blasting specialist, owner of the world-famous Beryl Mountain Mine in Acworth NH and owner of several equipment manufacturer companies for blasting services and tools the last 6+ decades in New England and beyond.

A portal to the History, Geology, Gemology, & Lapidary Arts of New England. Jim Pecora is a Mining Historian, Lapidarist, and Jeweler. Pecora is the Executive Director of the New England Mineral Museum (NEMM), a New Hampshire Non-Profit. Google “Pecoras Mica Mine Schoolhouse” which is the YouTube & traveling road show arm of the Museum that offers a multitude of educational programs to youth and adults alike. Jim is known as “the NH Rock Guy”

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same.
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Do you know a social worker?

LITTLETON: March is National Social Work month. Join The Littleton Department of Elder and Human Services to celebrate Littleton’s own superhumans. The theme for Social Work Month 2022 is, “The Time is Right for Social Work.” Here are just some of the ways Outreach Workers support our community:
 
  • Support Groups: If you’d like to chat with other caregivers or just hear how others are doing it, join us for Caregiver Support Group. Call 978-540-2470 to sign up.
  • Littleton EHS hosts a monthly Living Alone and Living Well Group via Zoom. Please contact Amy at 978-540-2472 for info, and to sign up.
  • Littleton EHS hosts an Anxiety Group and we would love to have you join. Please contact Nicole Sarvela at 978-540-2475 for info and to sign up.
  • Financial Assistance: The Littleton Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program (LEMP) provides temporary emergency mortgage assistance to those who need help paying their mortgage. The short application asks for your contact information, housing situation, and income. To apply, go to: www.littletonma.org/elder-and-human-services/pages/littleton-emergency-mortgage-assistance-program

The Littleton Rental Assistance Program (LRAP) provides rental assistance to income-eligible households who are renting qualified housing units in the Town of Littleton. The goal of the program is to provide greater housing stability and housing opportunities to cost burdened renters in Littleton. The rental assistance available through the program will be provided for a period of one year in the amount of $250/month to each participating household. Contact us for more information 978-540-2470
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Parish Center for the Arts Presents Photography by Nancy Rich: Afloat

WESTFORD: The Westford Parish Center for the Arts is pleased to welcome Nancy Rich as Artist of the Month for March 2022 with a collection of photographs entitled, “Afloat.” The exhibit will run from March 1 until April 3 with an artist’s reception to be held on March 13 from noon until 3pm.
 
Since retiring in 2016, Nancy focuses her creative passion on making photographs that bring joy, beauty, and a sense of wonder. “I’ve always had a voracious appetite to figuratively wrap my arms around most anything I see. The camera helps me do this. I want to understand what makes things tick and the science behind their being.” Portraiture, travel, and macro photography inspire much of Nancy’s work. Each type of photography feeds her creative need to explore, experiment, and learn.
 
A particular draw for Nancy has been the captivating and unpredictable movement of water.  It  inspired three major collections: “Nor’eastern Dinghies,” “Sea Sculptures,” and “Glass, Liquid and Ice Capades.”  In 2009, "Afloat on the Tide," a book of Nancy’s photographs of small wooden boats, was published by Sheridan House.
 
The Parish Center for the Arts is located at 10 Lincoln Street.
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Stock Up on Winter Reading, Watching & Listening: Grab Bags of Books, CDs and DVDs for Sale

WESTFORD: On March 6 from 1-4pm, the Friends of the J.V. Fletcher Library will hold a drive through grab bag book/CD/DVD sale in the parking lot of the J.V. Fletcher Library at 50 Main Street. All sealed bags will hold a random selection of items. No peeking allowed! Customers will pay, grab, and go from the comfort of their car. There will be book grab bags by genre of mystery, romance, popular fiction, biography, history, and more, 6-8 books per bag for adults. Kids and young adult books will be separated by age/grade and include 10 books per bag. Grab bags of CDs will be either classical or mixed, and DVDs will be either kids or adult mixed. All bags are $5. We can only accept cash at this sale.

The library is unable to accept donations at this time. They are hoping to start accepting donations again soon. Check www.westfordlibraryfriends.org for updates.
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Virginia Hall, A WWII spy behind enemy lines, Author Discussion w/ Heather Demetrios

WESTFORD: On Tuesday, March 1 from 7pm-8pm, Heather Demetrios will read from her new book, Code Name Badass: the True Story of Virginia Hall followed by a discussion. this will be a pre-registration required virtual event.  See the Westford Historical Society website to register for the Heather Demertrios book reading and discussion and for more information on the Westford Women Go to War program series and Westford women WWII veterans at: www.museum.westford.org.

During World War II, Virginia Hall was behind enemy lines, playing a dangerous game of cat and mouse with Hitler’s henchmen. Virginia Hall was the baddest broad in any room she walked into. This boss lady helped arm and train the French Resistance and organized sabotage missions. There was just one problem: the Butcher of Lyon, a notorious Gestapo commander, was after her. But, Virginia’s classmates didn’t call her “the Fighting Blade” for nothing.

Leslie Howard, President of the Westford Historical Society, thanks the Westford Cultural Council for their grant to bring this special event to Westford. “It’s a unique opportunity to have an author read and discuss their latest book with readers.” She further said, “Stories about the role of women in war aren’t always known or told, so this program is an excellent introduction. The book discussions in early February were lively and engaging. The evening with Heather Demetrios will surely be the same.”

As part of the Westford Museums and Historical Society, 2022 Winter Program Series, “Westford Women go to War,” we feature the role of Westford Women in World War II. Westford Women, in uniform, took office and clerical jobs in the armed forces to free men to fight. They served both at home and abroad, volunteering for the newly formed Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs, later renamed the Women’s Army Corps), the Navy Women’s Reserve (WAVES), the Marine Corps Women’s Reserve, the Coast Guard Women’s Reserve (SPARS), the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPS), the Army Nurses Corps, and the Navy Nurse Corp.

Heather Demetrios is a critically acclaimed author, writing coach, and certified meditation teacher. She has an MFA in Writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and is a recipient of the PEN America Susan P. Bloom Discovery Award for her debut novel, Something Real. Her novels include Little Universes, I’ll Meet You There, Bad Romance, as well as the Dark Caravan fantasy series: Exquisite Captive, Blood Passage, and Freedom’s Slave. Her non-fiction includes the Virginia Hall biography Code Name Badass and she is the editor of Dear Heartbreak: YA Authors and Teens on the Dark Side of Love. Her honors include books that have been named Bank Street Best Children’s Books, YALSA Best Fiction For Young Adults selections, a Goodreads Choice Nominee, a Kirkus Best Book, and a Barnes and Noble Best Book. Her work
has appeared in LA Review of Books, Bustle, School Library Journal, and other fine outlets. Find out more about Heather and her books at heatherdemetrios.com

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve, and exhibit documents, photographs, objects, and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same.

This program is funded through a grant from the Westford Cultural Council.
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Lori Zuroff Jazz Quintet "Ladybug" CD Release Party at Parish Center

WESTFORD: The Lori Zuroff Jazz Quintet is the Parish Center for the Art's next live music show in their jazz concert series, and will be held on Saturday, February 26 at 7:30pm. This concert is dedicated to celebrating the release of Zuroff’s jazz CD “Ladybug”. Joining Lori in her jazz quintet are Molly Flannery on piano, Bill McCormack on bass, Bill Vint on saxophone, and Miki Matsuki on drums.

Zuroff’s sultry, smoky, swinging jazz vocal style has been gracing various jazz, rock, blues, and R&B bands for over 20 years at venues from Boston to Worcester to Cape Cod and beyond. She studied jazz vocals for several years with Boston’s own jazz divas Rebecca Parris and Dominique Eade, and with Sheila Jordan and Jay Clayton in New York City.

Tickets are available in advance online or at door (cash/credit). Suggested Donation: $25 Adults, $21 Members. Cabaret style seating. BYOB (drinks/food). Doors open at 7pm!
 
Proof of Covid vaccination must be shown, and masks should be worn at all times except when actively eating/drinking. More info at https://westford.org/pca.
Intheheights

Celebrate 45 Years of Crowd-Pleasing Shows with Nashoba Players!

WESTFORD: We’ve seen many things in the last 45 years – eight Presidents, the fall of the Berlin Wall, Three Mile Island, Johnny Carson's retirement from "The Tonight Show", U.S. Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson, an historical musical that changed the history of musicals, racial unrest and a country divided in the most heated political environment since the Civil War. And what has been there through it all? The Nashoba Players!

Celebrating 45 Years in 2022, Nashoba Players began as Groton Theatre and Littleton Theatre Guild, and evolved into its current incarnation. A member of the Eastern Massachusetts Association of Community Theatres and recipients of repeated recognitions at EMACT Festivals for outstanding achievements, The Players enjoy their residence at the intimate and inviting Parish Center for the Arts at 10 Lincoln Street. A theatrical season usually offers three or more performances including drama, comedy, musicals or a whimsical tongue-in-cheek melodrama. They have previously entertained audiences with fun-filled murder mysteries and dinner theatre, and have sponsored performances by guest artists. They have offered summer theatre workshops for young people in the community culminating in a musical. In short, The Players are a dynamic, non-profit community theatre dedicated to providing cultural enrichment and quality entertainment through live theatre.

This season, celebrating 45 years includes ‘The Foreigner’ by Larry Shue, a comedy opening in March, and "an audience-pleasing, interactive spoof they cannot yet name, with adults acting like children" in October. Audiences, talented cast and crew members, and other volunteers come from many towns including Westford, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Lowell, Dracut, Groton, Ayer, Littleton, Pepperell, Dunstable, Acton, Shirley, Nashua, Marlboro, Berlin, Hudson, Melrose, Boston, Arlington, Harvard, Boxboro, Leominster, Lunenburg, Townsend, Tyngsboro and more!

To keep things in motion for almost a half-century, much needed support comes from donors and sponsors from all of the Players’ communities. Recently, The Players have begun a fundraising campaign to kickstart 2022’s season line-up. Show program ads range from $25 to $100, but donations in all amounts are welcomed and truly appreciated. Sponsorship tiers are also available from $100 to $5,000.

If you’d like to make a contribution to The Nashoba Players as an individual, or as a local business looking to give back to a community organization, contact fundraising volunteer JulieAnn Govang at JAG4NP@gmail.com, or call (978) 302-9121 and she will send out complete information to you via mail or email. 100% of proceeds go directly to the organization. Deadline for ad reservations is February 18, 2022.

The Nashoba Players are a non-profit 501(c)3 organization. To learn more about what’s in store or how to get involved, visit them online at www.nashobaplayers.org!

PHOTO: From Nashoba Players acclaimed production of the musical "In the Heights"
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Westford Access to Town Meeting Survey

WESTFORD: On September 14, 2021 the Westford Select Board appointed an 11-person committee charged with developing ideas for increasing attendance and participation at Town Meeting. The Access to Town Meeting Committee has been meeting regularly since and working hard to brainstorm and flesh out new ideas. This diverse group of dedicated volunteers is thinking outside the box in an effort to broaden the number and kind of voters who exercise their right be part of Westford’s legislative body – Town Meeting. Twice each year, Westford holds Town Meetings where the voters decide on our budget and other essential issues. Attendance (even before COVID) can be woefully light, often less than 2% of the Town voting population. What can be done to get people to participate in this important process? What factors prevent them from doing so? What technological advances can we employ to assist in resolving this issue? You can help...
 
One of the first steps is to survey the community and find out what the voters feel about Town Meeting and how they think it can be improved. Take a few moments to complete the ATM survey (just five questions!) here: https://bit.ly/WestfordTMsurvey. You can be even more helpful by posting the link to social media and asking your friends to participate as well. For those who are more comfortable with paper, there are hard copies of the survey available at the J. V. Fletcher Library, the Cameron Senior Center, the Town Clerk’s Office and the Roudenbush Community Center.
The next Town Meeting is scheduled for June 11 at the Westford Academy field.
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Pre-order Period for At-home Covid-19 Tests Has Begun

The Biden Administration is offering free rapid tests to all residents in the United States. The pre-order period for the at-home COVID-19 tests via www.covidtests.gov has begun. Every household in the U.S. is eligible to order four free at-home COVID-19 tests. The tests are completely free and will usually ship in 7-12 days. Please visit www.covidtests.gov to submit an order and learn more.

Greater Lowell Community Foundation Seeks Request for Proposals for 2022 Discretionary Grant Cycles & Nashoba Valley Healthcare Fund

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LOWELL: The Greater Lowell Community Foundation will open its 2022 Nashoba Valley Healthcare Fund and Discretionary Grant Cycles on February 2 and is seeking requests for proposals from nonprofit organizations. The Foundation will award $160,000 through the Discretionary Grant Cycle. Funding areas for 2022 include children’s services, elder services and racial equity/inclusion.

Non-profit organizations serving the communities of Acton, Ashby, Ayer, Bedford, Billerica, Burlington, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Concord, Dracut, Dunstable, Groton, Littleton, Lowell, Pepperell, Shirley, Tewksbury, Townsend, Tyngsboro, Westford, and Wilmington are invited to apply.

Additionally, GLCF will open its 2022 Nashoba Valley Healthcare Fund Cycle on February 2. The foundation seeks requests for proposals from non-profit organizations supporting the advancement of community health of residents in the following GLCF communities: Ashby, Ayer, Dunstable, Groton, Littleton, Pepperell, Shirley, Townsend, and Westford. The Foundation will award $80,000 through this grant program.

Nashoba Valley Healthcare Fund Cycle grant awards will range from $5,000 up to $20,000; however, larger scale collaborative projects that are more than $20,000 will be considered if the funding request is justified by the impact of the project. Of particular interest are proposals that address systemic issues like (but not limited to) addiction/ substance abuse, domestic violence, food insecurity, mental health, suicide screening and prevention, obesity, racial equity and inclusion and other specific issues as indicated by community needs.

Grant applications for both grant opportunities must be submitted by noon on March 4, 2022. Grant recipients will be announced in May. More information is available on the foundation’s website: www.glcfoundation.org.

For more information about the grant process, contact Sharon, GLCF Grants Coordinator with any questions at sharon@glcfoundation.org.

Established in 1997, the Greater Lowell Community Foundation (GLCF) is a philanthropic organization comprised of more than 390 funds dedicated to improving the quality of life in 21 neighboring cities and towns. With financial assets of more than $55 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 $25 million to the Greater Lowell community.

PHOTO: Catie’s Closet, Inc. received a past Discretionary Children’s Grant to support their Lowell program. Pictured, Catie’s Closet volunteers with special request bags packed with urgently needed items for children.
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7th Annual Summer Camp & Kids Activities Fair February 6

WESTFORD: Local parents looking for information on summer camps and kids’ activities will find plenty of resources at the Summer Camp & Kids Activities Fair in Westford on Sunday, February 6.  The Summer Camp Fair will take place at the Westford Regency, 219 Littleton Road from 12-3pm on February 6.

Coordinated by Lowell Macaroni Kid, the Fair is free to attend.  Families can gather information and talk with representatives from local and overnight camps and summer programs as well as local schools offering year-round activities such as sports, STEM, coding, art and more.   Please note that masks are required at the Fair, per town mandate.

Camps exhibiting at the 2022 Camp Fair include local favorites such as The Kids League of Westford, Camp Tahattawan, Camp Grotonwood and Camp Massapoag as well as specialty and overnight camps such as Code Wiz, 4-H Camp Middlesex, Camp Hawkeye and more.  Lowell Macaroni Kid also has an online Summer Camp Guide on its website (https://Lowell.MacaroniKid.com) as a resource for parents who cannot attend the Camp Fair.  If you're unable to attend the February 6th fair, there will be another Camp Fair at Teamworks Acton, 30 Great Rd, Acton on Sunday, March 6, from 1:30-4 PM and also at the Westford Regency on Sunday, April 3, from 12-3 PM.

For a list of camps attending the Fair, please visit Lowell Macaroni Kid at https://lowell.macaronikid.com.  Exhibitor requests and other requests for information can be directed to barbarae@macaronikid.com or (978) 239-3038.

“Meeting the Climate Challenge: The View from an MIT Observatory”, a free Climate Seminar

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WESTFORD: Westford Climate Action presents “Meeting the Climate Challenge: The View from an MIT Observatory”, a free Climate Seminar by professional staff from MIT Haystack Observatory, located in Westford. On Thursday, January 27 at 7pm, Dr. Colin Lonsdale, radio astronomer and Haystack's director, will present general information about the Observatory’s work and climate change science. Then Dr. Pedro Elosegui, leader of the geodesy team at Haystack, will talk about his Haystack polar geodetic research, which includes global climate and sea-level change. His current efforts are focused on measuring the flow, drift and deformation of the cryosphere and various forms of ice in both the Arctic and Antarctic systems. A Q&A will follow with the audience. 

MIT Haystack Observatory is a radio science research laboratory based in Westford, Massachusetts, whose mission includes the advancement of scientific knowledge of our planet and its atmosphere.

This seminar is co-sponsored by the Westford Clean Energy and Sustainability Committee, and the League of Women Voters of Westford. Register at: https://westfordclimateaction.org/events/

Keep Calm and Eat Chocolate
St. Mark’s Chocolate Festival TO GO! Will Benefit Local Food Pantries in a Safe New Format

Chocolate
WESTFORD: St Mark’s Episcopal Church is selling delicious boxes of homemade chocolate desserts to raise money for local food pantries in a creative take on its long-running Chocolate Festival. Boxes can be purchased online at www.st-mark.org/chocolate and then picked up at the church on Saturday, February 12, from 1 to 4pm.

For more than 20 years, St. Mark’s Chocolate Festival allowed chocoholics to indulge their cravings—while also helping their neighbors in need—by purchasing tickets to an all-you-can-eat smorgasbord of chocolate treats, all made with love by St. Mark’s parishioners. With Chocolate Festival TO GO!, pre-made boxes chocked-full of the same type of homemade chocolate desserts can be ordered online ahead of time (or on the day of the festival if extra boxes are available). Patrons can then come to St. Mark’s to pick up the box safely from volunteers stationed in the parking lot or just inside the church foyer (depending on weather).

Local businesses are also stepping up to donate prizes for the Chocolate Festival raffle, which will feature Valentine’s Day-themed packages. The many valuable prizes include two tickets to an Indian Hill Music Center performance plus an overnight stay at the Groton Inn with breakfast. Raffle tickets can be purchased online (www.st-mark.org/chocolate) for $2 each. Winning tickets will be pulled at the end of the festival at 4pm and will be broadcast on Facebook Live. 

All proceeds benefit local food pantries and St. Mark’s building fund, which supports low-cost community use of its facilities. For more information, visit www.st-mark.org/chocolateSt. Mark’s Episcopal Church is located at 75 Cold Spring Road.
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Bus Shuttles Replace Weekday Train Service January 24 & 25

Due to the work on the PTC implementation project, bus shuttles will replace weekday train service between Littleton & Wachusett of Fitchburg Line on Monday, January 24 and Tuesday, January 25. Normal weekday train service is expected to resume on Wednesday, January 26.

Visit www.MBTA.com/PTC for more information on how this project will improve commuter rail safety and travel. The dedicated diversion schedule is available online or for pick up at North Station.

As a reminder, during the ongoing PTC/ATC (Positive Train Control/ Automatic Train Control) implementation project, bus shuttles replace train service at weekends between Wachusett and Littleton/495 through the end of winter 2021-2022.

Fitchburg Line Shuttle Details

The shuttles will pick up and drop off passengers as follows:
 
  • Wachusett: in the parking lot in front of the station
  • Fitchburg: in Bay 1 of the Intermodal Transportation Center
  • North Leominster: on the ground level of the parking garage by the stairwell
  • Shirley: at Phoenix St. by the crosswalk
  • Ayer: inside the parking/ drop-off loop
  • Littleton/495: in the parking lot in front of the station

For more information about these service changes, please see http://mbta.com/fbgwork.
Westfordlacrosse

Westford Youth Lacrosse Registering for Spring'22 Season

WESTFORD: Lacrosse is the fastest sport on two feet and one of the fastest growing youth sports in the country. Westford Youth Lacrosse (WYL) is accepting registrations for the Spring 2022 season for the boys and girls programs (Grades 1-8) as well as the mixed FiddleStix Program for Kindergarten age.  WYL play starts in mid-March with indoor practices. Games start in early April and run through mid-June. Boys and Girls programs consist of one to two practices per week with games on Sundays in Westford or the neighboring towns. FiddleStix is a great entry program for Kindergarten age children looking to try something new. No equipment needed. One day per week commitment. No weekends. Early registration rates end January 15  for Grades 1-8 programs so don’t miss out. Grade 1-8 registration will conclude by the end of January. Visit www.westfordlax.org to learn more and to register for any of the WYL programs. FiddleStix registration will remain open until April 1.
Michelle willson headshot 2021

Michelle Willson & the Evil Gal Festival Orchestra at PCA

WESTFORD: Michelle Willson and the Evil Gal Festival Orchestra will perform on 1/8/22 at 8pm at Parish Center for the Arts, 10 Lincoln Street.  Michelle's Evil Gal Festive Orchestra include renowned musicians Michelle Willson (vocals), Zac Casher (drums), Mike Mele (guitar), Shinichi Otsu (keys), and Scott Shetler (sax, clarinet, mandolin). Watch this video of the Michelle Willson and her band performing "Half Past the Blues" - https://youtu.be/byCxz71mk18.

Known to blues lovers around the world as "Evil Gal" and acknowledged by aficionados of Jazz and Blues as a passionate and gifted performer, bandleader and songwriter, Michelle Willson has recorded and released 4 critically acclaimed albums for Rounder/ Bullseye Records. Before signing with Rounder, Michelle's group won a prestigious W.C. Handy award for best unsigned blues act as a result of their win at the Blues Foundation's International Blues competition and Michelle was later nominated for a (best female blues vocal) Handy alongside Etta James and Koko Taylor. For over 3 years, Michelle hosted 2 weekly programs, "Voices of Jazz" and "Jazz n' Blue" on one of the few remaining NPR music stations, WICN, in Worcester, MA. Learn more about this powerhouse vocalist and her band at - www.evilgal.com/music.
 
Tickets are on sale now at https://westford.org/pca/events/michelle-wilson-and-the-evil-gal-festival-orchestra or at door (cash/credit) - $25 GA, $21 members/seniors, $12 youth 12 and under. Doors open 7:30pm.  The PAC offers cafe-style candlelit table seating
BYOB (drinks and appetizers). **VAXXED & MASKED** per Westford Town Mandate
 
The PCA is a private, non-profit arts center located in a historic building on the town common in Westford with weekly events open to the public. A fine art gallery, a concert hall, a dance hall, or a general purpose hall for your private recital or family event, the PCA offers many ways to celebrate the fine and performing arts in a convenient and family-friendly venue. Built in 1829, our historic space is charming, intimate and has a capacity for up to 125 people. There isn’t a bad seat in the house! A volunteer-run organization, they receive no government funding for operations.  They are funded by donations, event revenues and private rentals. Concert series include monthly Jazz, Rock, Blues, Folk, Classical and Comedy shows, and many Community Events such as Jazz Jams, Bluegrass Jams, Barn Dances, Open Mics for teens and adults, and Karaoke Nights. More info at westford.org/pca.