Friday, November 21, 2008
Two fun events to benefit the Lowell Humane Society
To the Editor:
Each day that the animal shelter opens lately, the number of surrendered animals greatly outweighs the number of adoptions. The Lowell Humane Society needs your help this holiday season more than ever and there are two family events upcoming that benefit the animals directly.
The first event is a hockey game at the Tsongas Arena in Lowell on Saturday, November 22, at 1:30 p.m. The Lowell Devils will play the Norfolk Admirals and a portion of each ticket sold will support the Lowell Humane Society. This is a great family event and tickets are just $13 each. For more ticket information you can contact the shelter directly at 1-978-452-7781, www.lowellhumanesociety.org, or order online at www.lowelldevilshockey.com and enter promo code LHS112208.
The second event is Santa Photo Day to be held on Saturday, November 29, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; all pets and children are welcome to come to the shelter to sit for their photo with Santa. There will also be a silent auction, raffle and gift baskets available to purchase. All pets must be leashed or in a carrier. The cost per photo is $10 with all proceeds directly going to the humane society. This is great idea for holiday cards and gift giving to special family and friends while helping a great cause.
Remember, all donations are tax-deductible, but the greatest gift that you can give these animals is a forever home; please consider opening your heart and home to a homeless animal.
Don’t let it happen here
To the Editor:
I saw this item in The Star newspaper, October 28, 2008: “Westfield, Massachusetts. - An eight-year-old boy has died after accidentally shooting himself in the head while firing an Uzi submachinegun under adult supervision at a gun fair. The boy lost control of the weapon while firing it on Sunday at the MachineGun Shoot and Firearm Expo at the Westfield Sportsman Club, the police said on Monday. The boy was with a certified instructor and was shooting the weapon down-range when the force of the weapon made it travel up and back toward his head.” Well, that certainly could not happen in Carlisle, where the intelligence level is very high.
While at the Swap Shed today, November 8, 2008, I found a prescription bottle filled with 60 Tetracycline capsules. Yes, it was on the top shelf. But how many times have you seen items get knocked off the top shelf? How many times have you seen four, five and six-year-olds rummaging around the good stuff on the floor? Yes, it did have a “child proof cap” on it. “But, gee gosh, those yellow and white capsules sure looked like nice candy.”
Evidently one of our highly intelligent citizens just does not have any smarts.
CSA provides $55K in direct teacher funding
To the Editor:
Without much fanfare, the Carlisle School Association (CSA) has stepped up to fill in growing gaps in funding the education of Carlisle’s students. While many in the town are familiar with the classic CSA fundraising activities, few are familiar with the how these funds are used to enhance the educational experience in Carlisle. The CSA raises funds through a spectrum of volunteer activities including membership dues, gift wrap and T-shirt sales, school supplies, biennial house tours and direct donations.
In 2007, the CSA provided $55,759 in funding to the school, all for direct teacher support.
As per the CSA policies, the majority of the funding is provided through grants where requests are reviewed by a committee and awarded dependent on need and funding availability. Past grants have included Early Intervention for Literacy materials, science text books, math journals, athletic uniforms, musical instruments, library books and resource materials, computer software programs and activity boards.
The CSA also spends funds on the Curriculum Enrichment Program which offers students the opportunity to see outside performances pertaining to their classroom curriculum. In the 2007-8 school year, the CSA provided support for 18 programs and two to three assemblies. Examples include “Physical Changes In Matter,” provided by The Discovery Museum which focused on the physical properties of solids, liquids and gases via experiments utilizing dry ice and liquid nitrogen or school assemblies such as “Techsploration,” which discusses concepts such as electricity, structures and simple machines. Finally, the Curriculum Enrichment program also supports a guest visitor to the annual CSA Book Fair. Last year this was Kevin Hawkes, a well-known author and illustrator of children’s books.
Of course, the CSA volunteers also provide support through coordinating help in the library, lunch/recess duty, classroom library book collections, teacher luncheons, kindergarten bus riders. However, as the budget narrows in these economic times and the educational demands increase, the CSA provides a critical “bridge” funding basic teacher support. Remember how valuable your contributions are when the next opportunity to support the CSA arises and step up to the plate.
To the residents of Carlisle
To the Editor:
The Board of Selectmen is in need of residents to serve on two highly visible committees.
The first committee is the Cable Advisory Committee. The town has been notified by Comcast that they wish to begin negotiations for renewal of their franchise. We need individuals who have an interest in identifying the future cable-related needs of the community and reviewing Comcast performance under the current license. These individuals will also be asked to participate in negotiations with Comcast on a renewal proposal for the Town. This is your opportunity to have a say in cable services to be provided in the future.
The second committee is the Energy Task Force. This group will be asked to study the energy use and cost in all Town buildings, equipment and contractual services. The Task Force will then be asked to prepare a composite of potential areas of cost reduction effected by lower consumption, revised contractual relationships, alternative materials or alternative modes of energy production with the caveat that the analysis should include the use of low carbon producing (green) energy production wherever practical. We hope to identify some cost saving areas.
If you have an interest and/or background in these areas, please submit a letter of interest to the Town Administrator, 66 Westford St., Carlisle, MA 01741. Your assistance is needed.
Carlisle Board of Selectmen
Thanks from Union Hall Coffeehouse and the Open Pantry
To the Editor:
Let me take this opportunity to joyfully “give it up” in a big, big way to those who unselfishly “gave it up” for others at Union Hall Coffeehouse, last Saturday evening, as we hosted a musical benefit for the Open Pantry of Greater Lowell. We raised close to $2,500, and it’s still coming in through personal donations. Hot Boston bands ScrumDaddy and Miss Tess and the Bon Ton Parade, provided a “this joint is jump’n” show that had jaws dropped in amazement, and foot tapping so loud, you could swear hunger was actually being stamped out, forever!
From the hallowed halls and walls of The First Religious Society in Carlisle, where so many good things take place, and where the best entertainment this side of New York and Boston can be heard, once a month, without sacrificing your firstborn, or handing over a mortgage payment, just for a little night’s evening out, I give my heartfelt thanks to all of you, especially our FRS volunteers, the bands, Pantry president Tom Burretta and his gang from Lowell, that wonderful little old pie-maker herself, Mrs. Margaret Darling, Sue Kirk and her husband Captain Kirk, who keep me grounded and sane in the kitchen, “BB” Cuccinello, who was not only one of the ScrumDaddies, but handled lighting and sound for the event, Mr. Bob Wallhagen, Michael and Janet Oyer and Judy Monroe, our ticket-takers, and so many wonderful others, and you!
Giving of yourself to others... the only gift you don’t have to find room in the attic for.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you.
Dian Francesca Cuccinello,
Thanks for great Pumpkin Spectacle
To the Editor:
For 25 years the Annual Pumpkin Spectacle of the Gleason Library has been a Halloween tradition that showcases the creativity and originality of the town children in grades K-3. It was a great success thanks to the many people who contributed their help.
Our thanks go to the Friends of the Gleason Public Library who funded the entire event. They paid for Tony Toledo’s performance as well as the book prizes and refreshments. Thanks also to Lisa Lofdahl who helped with refreshments.
Our judges Kate Bauer-Burke, Angela Smith and David Flannery had an especially difficult job this year choosing the prizewinners from so many special pumpkins. Nancy Roberts took great pictures of each child, which are displayed in the library. Stop by and pick up the picture of your child.
For the 10th year Verna Gilbert served as a registrar. Barbara Culkins also registered pumpkins. David Smith helped the children get back safely to the library. Student helpers were Lindsay Ryder, Rachel Aquaviva, Mary Boutet and Phoebe Taffel.
Thanks to the Carlisle Schools for the use of the auditorium.
Give thanks for healthy babies
To the Editor:
In Northern Middlesex and Essex Counties, nearly 18,000 infants were born during the past year, but 80 will likely never reach their first birthday, dying from the complications of birth. November is the month the March of Dimes designates to raise awareness of these issues, and it is a time of thanksgiving where we count our blessings and remember those less fortunate. If 80 people were lost in the region in a tragic accident, it would be national news, and so certainly, we can pay homage here to those who have died as a result of birth complications.
Massachusetts has made progress, but there remain some alarming trends. Infant mortality has declined over the past decade, and birth defects have dropped through efforts such as the March of Dimes Folic Acid Campaign. But premature birth now exceeds birth defects as the leading cause of infant mortality in the State. Premature birth touches one in nine babies and their families in Massachusetts, and babies born too soon are more likely to die or have lifelong disabilities.
Massachusetts has had the highest rate of increase in premature birth of any state over the past decade – 40% – and our region, unfortunately, has not faired much better. For these reasons and others, the March of Dimes is a strong advocate for policies that help assure healthy births and raises millions each year for programs across the state, including research funding, family support and professional education.
In these tough economic times, we hope you will continue to realize that the health of babies needs to remain a priority. You can help by participating in the March for Babies in Lowell (Saturday, May 2, 2009) or our regional Signature Chef Charity Auction (Fall 2009). I serve as Volunteer Chair for the Northeastern Massachusetts Division of the March of Dimes, and I hope you will join our effort by contacting me at email@example.com or 1-866-213-1140.
We all wish for a day when the weakest among us – our infant children – are given the best possible chance for a healthy life.
Congratulations to Atkins
To the Editor:
I would like to extend congratulations to Representative Atkins, who won last Tuesday’s election for the 14th Middlesex House seat. As a representative, she has demonstrated a commitment to the environment that reflects her constituent’s values: from expanding public transportation to protecting open space to encouraging new renewable energy development. Furthermore, Rep. Atkins received a score of 88% in Massachusetts League of Environmental Voters’ (MLEV) 2008 Environmental Scorecard. The environment has become a key issue for many voters as high energy prices are squeezing consumer budgets this fall. The legislature has much work ahead of it, to ensure that financial troubles don’t gut our future and that we work to lower our energy costs by using more alternative energy. We look forward to continuing to work with Cory Atkins on these critical challenges for the Commonwealth.
© 2008 The