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Feature Articles

Blackstone Valley Chamber tackles workforce skills gap and sustainability with innovative educational programming

Located in the historic Linwood Mill, which is geothermal, the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce (BVCC) is definitely walking the walk when it comes to innovation and clean energy.

BVCC was just selected as one of 5 local and state chambers across the country to receive an Economic Development grant from the US Chamber of Commerce. The grant allows the Chamber to implement a work-based learning program to help the loca... Read More

Unibank’s Carolyn Grider promoted to Vice President, Manager of Branch Administration

WHITINSVILLE, MA – Christopher D. Foley, EVP and Chief Banking Officer of UniBank, recently announced that Carolyn Grider has been promoted to Vice President, Manager of Branch Administration. In this role, Ms. Grider oversees and manages operations of UniBank’s retail division which includes 14 banking locations. She acts as the main liaison between the retail bank and all internal support departments.

Ms. Grider has been... Read More

The Former Black Duck Inn

By Tom D’Agostino

The Black Duck was originally a rum-running vessel that smuggled liquor into Newport Harbor in 1929 during Prohibition. The Coast Guard was furious over the incident, yet Rhode Islanders found it to be a comfort in the “dry time” of the twentieth century. In fact, many places in the Ocean State refused to recognize the era of prohibition to the extent that in some cases, alcohol flowed freely in various h... Read More

Dear Abel & Sofi: Help! My travel agency has been a failure to launch. How can I get it to 'take off'?

About Dear Abel and Sofi: While the Q&A Forum addresses 1,000+ public questions weekly, we wanted to give our small business owners an outlet to anonymously share the kinds of frustrations, fears and private struggles few people express openly. Father-daughter duo Abel and Sofi co-author the column, bringing diverse perspectives to both professional and personal problems. A serial e... Read More

Mill will stay a ʽCornerstone’ even as Purgatory Beer Co. expands

By Rod Lee

In taking time the morning of February 23rd to talk about the Cornerstone Award he and partner Kevin Mulvehill received at the Blackstone Valley Chamber of Commerce’s recent 40th annual meeting, Brian Distefano admitted that running a small craft brew company like Purgatory Beer can be a humbling experience.

“I was halfway to Milford and had to come back to fix a tap,” Mr. Distefano said, while unlocking... Read More

Gowdey-Backus named director of communications

WORCESTER, March 5 – It is with great pleasure that the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce announces the hiring of Emily Gowdey-Backus as the Director of Communications effective Feb. 19.

In this position, Ms. Gowdey-Backus will act as editor of the Chamber’s quarterly newspaper, Chamber Exchange working with members and community voices to cover the stories and news which drive the Central Massachusetts busin... Read More

30 Years of Soaping Up Buses In Gold Coats

Linwood, MA-- In 1978, as a member of the Knights of Columbus, Donald Menard saw that other members were eager to join him on group trips to attractions and events. He and three other Knights responded to that clear demand, erecting a ragtag travel club and renting a bus to take them places.

“Our first trip was eight buses,” said Donald. “It was a moonlight cruise in North Kingston, RI, with 250 on the boat, we filled it t... Read More

In the age of Amazon, Uxbridge shopkeepers stay upbeat in the fight

By Rod Lee

Some would point to the recent closure of Rita’s in downtown Uxbridge as another sign that online shopping in general and Amazon in particular are doing in the brick-and-mortar “little guy”—even though Owner Pat Benoit had announced her exit as a step toward retirement.

The truth is, Uxbridge “smalls” are doing just fine and actually increasing in number, as evidenced by the arrival last July of Amy Josey... Read More

CareOne at Millbury grows organic

By Magda Dakin

What brightens smiles in the dead of winter more than the sight of bright, green, fresh-smelling produce? The residents and guests of the CareOne at Millbury held an open house in January to showcase their most recent venture: oganic produce grown inside in the winter.

Gardening is something many residents at the CareOne home in Millbury have been interested in their whole lives and miss it when they... Read More