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Families shelter in local hotels as homeless problem persists

December 18th, 2013

Region – Pearl Dionysopoulos was recently employed and is married with five children, aged 5 to 16. She is not what readily comes to mind when one thinks of the homeless. The family was renting a home in Roxbury. Her husband worked in painting and construction. She worked at a pizza joint in Dorchester.

“Things were good; they were good for a while,” Dionysopoulos said.

Wegmans offers employment opportunities for those with disabilities

December 11th, 2013

John Polanowicz, the state's health and human services secretary, listens to Paul describe his job duties at Wegmans. Paul was placed at the store through the efforts of the Central Mass Employment Collaborative. 
Photo/Bonnie Adams

Northborough – In an economic environment that is still struggling, many are still finding it difficult to gain employment. For those with disabilities, the search can be especially frustrating. But thanks to the Central Mass Employment Collaborative (CMEC ) over 100 Massachusetts residents have found jobs this past year, including 26 at the Wegmans store in Northborough.

“Sweats for Vets” founder appeals to public for holiday donations

December 8th, 2013

Mark Vital, founder of Sweats for Vets, poses with some of his sixth-grade Advanced Math and Science Academy students.
Photo/Mark Vital

Region – In a region that has celebrated eight major sports championships in just over a decade, it's a common sight to see many wearing clothing bearing the logos of those winning teams. Everyone, it seems, wants to show their Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics, or Bruins pride.

Driven to provide transportation for more Marlborough seniors

December 2nd, 2013

Jeanne McGeough, volunteer program administrator of a pilot transportation program for seniors
(Photo/Ed Karvoski Jr.)

Marlborough – The Marlborough Senior Center and its Council on Aging (COA) launched a pilot transportation program in October to accommodate more of the people who they serve.

COA Executive Director Jennifer Claro noted that the pilot program was designed to complement the volunteer-run Friends in Service Helping (FISH) and the MetroWest Regional Transit Authority (MWRTA), the parent company of Busy Bee and Dial A Ride. Busy Bee is used in Marlborough.

Under pressure: Class sizes in Shrewsbury causing teacher headaches, achievement gaps

November 14th, 2013

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Shrewsbury – Oak Middle School English teacher Derek Pizzuto is, to put it mildly, frustrated. After a series of personnel cuts in Shrewsbury schools, there are less teachers to go around. Less teachers means a higher teacher-student ratio and less time to work individually with students. A lack of teachers also means there's no one to help students produce a yearbook or advise a photography club. And now, student achievement appears to be suffering in Shrewsbury schools.

“We'se at a crisis point where teachers and administrators are doing all they can,” Pizzuto said. “We'se working past the boundaries of what can be. I's seeing more and more teachers looking burnt out.”

Shrewsbury Veterans Day ceremony dedicates new WWI Memorial

November 12th, 2013

The new World War I Memorial is dedicated Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

Shrewsbury – After several years of planning and fundraising, the Shrewsbury Veterans Council welcomed guests Nov. 11 to a dedication ceremony for the new World War I (WWI) Memorial in front of the Beal Early Education Center. Emceeing the ceremony, Selectman Jim Kane summarized the spirit of the project's supporters.

“Through this effort, from across our very special town, rose the support to make this monument a reality,” he said.

Region to commemorate Veterans Day

November 8th, 2013

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Region – Here is a preview of local Veterans Day events: Hudson – This year's parade will assemble Monday, Nov. 11, at 9:30 a.m. and depart at 10 a.m. from the AMVETS Post on South Street. The ceremonies will be held at Liberty Park/Wood Square.? This year's featured guest speaker is Naval Combat Aviator, Commander [...]

Northborough residents reject Zoning Board limitations

October 29th, 2013

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Northborough ??” Northborough Town Meeting voters on Oct. 28 overwhelmingly rejected a change to the bylaw that would eliminate the Zoning Board of Appeal's (ZBA) ability to grant use variances.

Under Northborough's bylaw, the ZBA has the power to allow a use in a zoning district not otherwise permitted. The largest use variance granted by the board occurred in 2005 and paved the way for the Northborough Crossing shopping center.

Gun control advocates in Westborough call for common ground with opponents

October 19th, 2013

Congressman Jim McGovern speaks Oct. 13 at the Forum on Preventing Gun Violence in Westborough. McGovern said that extreme factions in the gun lobby have prevented meaningful gun control legislation. 
Photo/John Swinconeck

Westborough – Speaking at the Forum on Preventing Gun Violence at Congregation B'sai Shalom in Westborough Oct. 13, U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern (D- 2nd District), said there needs to be a broader coalition of responsible gun owners to lessen gun violence.

McGovern called on gun owners to “stand up” to extremism “by taking a public stand on sensible legislation that doesn’t take away their constitutional rights.”

Hensley to be honored as Knox Trail's “Good Scout”

October 4th, 2013

Lester Hensley
Photo/Bonnie Adams

Westborough – Each year the Knox Trail Council Boy Scouts of America chooses someone as its “Good Scout Honoree for Westborough.” This year's nominee, Lester Hensley, certainly fulfills the tenets of who the council seeks to honor – someone who has “demonstrated integrity and genuine concern for others in both their professional and personal lives.” As CEO and president of EMSEAL Joint Systems Ltd., he is a second generation head of the Westborough-based business. Hensley has devoted countless hours to his community as a volunteer with youth sports, school organizations, and other community groups. He currently chairs the Westborough Planning Board and the town's Economic Development Committee.

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