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Recent Articles

Art & Music Makers Festival

By Magda Dakin

One of the fun markers of fall is the flurry of craft and holiday art fairs. One unique local event this season will be an Art & Music Makers Festival, being held at the Alternatives’ Whitin Mill Community Plaza at 50 Douglas Road in Whitinsville on October 1 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Artists, artisans, musicians and an appreciative audience will gather on the plaza to be part of this experience. Thi... Read More

ʽUncle Lou,’ GBI: Building on a dream

By Rod Lee

What could possibly be revealed about Louis C. Tusino that people already familiar with the man and his company---Guaranteed Builders Inc. (aka GBI-Avis Modular Homes) of Douglas don’t already know?

Given Mr. Tusino’s buoyant, colorful and engaging personality, there is a natural curiosity to dig deeper into the psyche of one of the town and the region’s pre-eminent businesspersons for more information th... Read More

Webster's Tom Gromelski remembers 9/11

By Barbara Van Reed

Tom Gromelski, a Webster native now living in Woodstock, was in New York on that fateful day fifteen years ago: September 11, 2001. “I remember watching the buildings fall down, and waiting for the debris to clear.”

Many of the survivors of the Twin Towers attack headed to the piers in Lower Manhattan, where a number of vessels were moored and began taking on survivors. One of them was the Sassac... Read More

Valley Bag Toss in third year

By Magda Dakin

Looking for something a little different, want to laugh and just have a good time, looking for something to do with a date and prove you know how to play sports? Here’s your chance!  Come join other teams of two and compete in the Alternatives Third Annual Valley Bag Toss. Start practicing now, build your skill at tossing a little itty bitty corn bag into the hole on a slanted board, and then compete on Satu... Read More

Ladybug Florist features a beautiful flower zone

By Magda Dakin

Sharen Doray is one of those rare, lucky individuals who likes what she does, loves the fact that most people love what she does for them and is surrounded by beautiful flowers all day long.  Sharen, new owner of the Ladybug Florist shop on Main Street in Oxford, is enjoying her new expanded adventure into the flower world. 

Although she has an extensive background in flower design, having worked as a... Read More

Pet Rock Fest says hot diggity dog to new home

By Rod Lee

Expect some cats and maybe a horse, rabbit or turtle to crash the 18th annual Pet Rock Festival on the Leicester campus of Becker College come September 11th.

But it’s mostly about the dogs, like Founding Partner Jeannie Hebert’s “Bella,” or “Bella Boo,” a Miniature Pinscher and German Shepherd Pointer who “sleeps with us, under the covers,” a relative lightweight at 48 pounds and even more so now at 43 b... Read More

Anger Erupts Over Soaring EpiPen® Prices

By Jason Poquette, BPharm, RPh

Drug manufacturer Mylan Labs has come under severe fire lately for the steep price increases for their prescription-only product known as the EpiPen®.  The EpiPen®, a life-saving auto-injection of the drug epinephrine, is used by children and adults at risk of anaphylaxis from severe allergic reactions caused by things like insect stings or food allergies.  The EpiPen® is intended to... Read More

ʽWe are family’ is Manchaug Mills’ mantra

By Rod Lee

If ever any of the old manufacturing buildings sprinkled around the Blackstone Valley was worth preserving and being repurposed, it is the circa 1826 Manchaug Mills Inc. complex on Main St. in Sutton.

Originally a cotton mill, the initial home of the “Fruit of the Loom” brand and later a site for the production of foam products used as trays and plates, Manchaug Mills—a sprawling edifice built of thick gr... Read More

Hawk Hill Orchard promises apples instead of peaches

By Amy Palumbo-LeClaire

Due to unseasonably mild winter temps, along with a frigid Cupid’s night (Valentine’s Day, 2016) the peach crop has been, well, cropped from the August landscape. Nevertheless, Kent Stowe, owner and operator of Hawk Hill Orchards of 83 Carleton Road, Millbury, has an attitude that’s ripe with optimism.

“We have plenty of apples for picking. I have a sixty percent crop. Last year we all had a... Read More

‘Green living’ activist espouses foam recycling

By  Amy Palumbo-LeClaire

She drinks Cumberland Farms coffee from a reusable mug, collects monofilament fishing line to reuse for fish habitats, and collects litter while walking along the Blackstone River trails.  She’s saved honeybees from “colony collapse disorder” and recently caught the attention of Bill Walsh, Executive Director of the Blackstone Valley Regional Recycling Center.  Bonnie Combs, Marketing Director for... Read More

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