Friday, December 14, 2007
News from surrounding towns
The following news items were extracted from material available online at: www.wickedlocal.com.
Chelmsford — Tax payers have financed the high school renovation project at a cost of $310,000 a year, but there is hope that the town could receive almost $10 million (which would account for 55% of the $18 million total cost) in reimbursement from the Massachusetts School Building Authority. ("Town in running for school building reimbursement," November 30.)
Billerica — "A written threat was discovered on the bathroom of the high school on Friday, November 30. This threat stated someone was going to bring a gun to school the following Monday." The school used its automated telephone system to broadcast a recorded message to all parents and students, instructing all students not to bring a backpack to school and to enter through the gymnasium door. This incident is currently under active police investigation. ("Violent threat made against high school," December 3).
Bedford — is welcoming a wide range of business from hi-tech to biotech. The hi-tech company iRobot, that has made its name through products such as Roomba vacuuming robots, will be moving to Bedford. By late 2008, all of the company's 360 Massachusetts employees will work out of Bedford. ("iRobot firm to move here," August 23.)
Another company, Anika Therapeutics, Inc. that develops products to repair, protect and heal bone, cartilage and soft tissue, has moved its lab and corporate headquarters into a 134,000-square-foot facility previously occupied by Millipore Corporation. Plans are under way to move their manufacturing unit in late 2008. ("Anika Therapeutics moves divisions to Bedford," November 21.)
Chelmsford — Although farming is a hard profession with slim profit margins, farmers in Chelmsford keep their farming traditions alive by looking for innovative ways to draw customers and supplement their incomes. "It's called 'agri-tourism,'" said Donna Parlee. She has made their farm a desired destination for people to see interesting collections like miniature horses and peacocks. They also provide hayrides and offer seasonal pick-your-own strawberries, blueberries and pumpkins. Another farm in the town, Jones Farm, stocks books on gardening and offers classes on organic land care.("Down, but not out, on Chelmsford's farms," September 26.)
Concord — Ever hear that Concord was once known as the asparagus capital of the country? The Thoreau Farm Trust has acquired the deed to Henry David Thoreau's birth house on Virginia Road and plans to renovate the historic building. The mission is to go beyond museum style display and provide educational material for viewers to learn about the history of the house along with the agricultural life that once surrounded it. ("Thoreau's home has a new owner," November 20.)
Acton — Expect to see more traffic at the intersection of Routes 2A and 27 should the proposal to build a 174-unit senior housing development on half of the Quail Ridge Country Club's 18-hole golf course be approved by the Acton Planning Board. ("Decision on Quail Ridge nears," November 29.)
Also in the news
Bedford — In response to national news coverage on increased lead level in toys made in China, the First Church of Christ, Congregational UCC in Bedford is helping residents identify lead levels in everyday toys by setting up an open session where people can bring toys that need to be measured for lead levels. The initial awareness around this started in September when parishioner Don Sackett, a Bedford resident and employee of INNVOX Systems in Woburn, used his company's XRF analyzer to test the toys in the church nursery and much to his surprise discovered lead contamination in many name-brand toys. ("Church discovers lead in kids' toys," November 29.)
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