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Hillside Pizza has record-breaking year in sales, despite closing Hadley location
02-22-2024 11:47 AM

By GRACE LEE

The return of the Super Bowl marked a record-breaking year in sales and fundraising efforts for Hillside Pizza, despite closing the doors at its 15-year-old Hadley location.With employee shortages and rising supply costs, many restaurants have...

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Sounds Local: Watermelon Wednesdays celebrates 25 years of acoustic music series: Plus, Iron Horse announces initial lineup
02-21-2024 2:05 PM

By SHERYL HUNTER

Watermelon Wednesdays, the acoustic music series that presents concerts and workshops at the historic West Whately Chapel and the Whately Town Hall, will celebrate its 25th year in 2024. Paul Newlin of Whately, a devout music fan, heads up the series,...


Northfield’s sewer rates could increase ‘significantly’ to support treatment plant upgrades
02-21-2024 9:23 AM

By LIESEL NYGARD

NORTHFIELD — Depending on the result a Town Meeting vote, sewer rates may increase “significantly” for fiscal year 2025 to support improvements to the town’s wastewater treatment plant and collection system.Karen Boudreau, who serves on the Board of...


Father of our country hoe cakes: George Washington-related concoction is a favorite breakfast
02-20-2024 4:20 PM

By TINKY WEISBLAT

I appreciate that people who work regular jobs need three-day holiday weekends. For this reason, in 1968, George Washington’s birthday was moved from Feb. 22 to the third Monday in the month.Sadly, in my opinion, this means that the official...


Class C quarters: Hannah Gilbert (29 points), No. 4 Franklin Tech roar into semifinals via 54-29 win over No. 5 Greenfield (PHOTOS)
02-19-2024 9:01 PM

By GEORGE MILLER

TURNERS FALLS — It’s not often that teams in such close geographical proximity may go through an entire regular season without facing each other, but the Western Mass. girls Class C quarterfinals took care of that Monday night – and then Franklin Tech...


Mohawk Trail proposes $26.7M budget for FY25; public hearing set for Wednesday
02-19-2024 3:37 PM

By VIRGINIA RAY

BUCKLAND — The Mohawk Trail Regional School District School Committee is bringing a $26.97 million total operating and capital budget proposal for fiscal year 2025 to a public hearing this week, representing a 5.34% increase over this year’s...


Four-alarm blaze at Red Fire Farm in Granby causes an estimated $1M in damages
02-18-2024 4:51 PM

By AALIANNA MARIETTA

GRANBY — A blaze engulfed Red Fire Farm’s barn and farm store on Carver Street on Saturday afternoon, leaving the west side of the barn “completely obliterated” and causing an estimated $1 million in damages, according to co-owner Ryan...


Doug Selwyn: Can we prioritize our children? Too many students are not coming to school ready and able to learn
02-16-2024 2:24 PM

By DOUG SELWYN

We spent a week over the holidays with a two-year-old, a five-year-old and one of their parents, helping the family deal with the holiday gap in school/day care. Their parents both work at demanding jobs, struggled to find appropriate child care and...


Sounds Local: Songwriter Joe O’Rourke puts his skills to work with new studio band
02-14-2024 6:41 PM

By SHERYL HUNTER

Can you be in a band and not be in the band? That’s the question songwriter Joe O’Rourke asks regarding the album “There is No Right or Wrong” on which he wrote all the songs but didn’t sing or play any of the instruments.O’Rourke, of South Deerfield,...


‘Everybody’s got a story’: Family histories take shape with Erving genealogy program
02-13-2024 2:33 PM

By AALIANNA MARIETTA

ERVING — A pair of Erving residents are helping curious minds dive into their family histories through a regular program at the Erving Public Library.Philip Johnson runs the program with Sara Campbell, offering drop-in genealogy assistance at the...


MassDEP’s Clean Heat Standard poised to advance energy shift
02-13-2024 11:31 AM

By TANISHA BHAT

While Greenfield officials say the city has made considerable progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the next big step statewide will involve electrifying home heating systems, a process the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection...


Focaccia is for lovers: Nothing is as cozy as a freshly baked bread on a cold day
02-13-2024 11:21 AM

By TINKY WEISBLAT

At this time of year, when the weather is still cool, baking is a pleasure … almost a necessity. Baked goods warm us up when we eat them. The word “calorie,” after all, represents a measure of heat. Moreover, the mere act of turning on the oven makes...


The remedy is in your own backyard: Conway resident enhances health through herbal medicine
02-13-2024 10:53 AM

By EVELINE MACDOUGALL

Lynn Golan’s Conway home and her Greenfield work space are both filled with materials and tools related to herbalism, yet her early life gave no hints that this would become her chosen path. While growing up near New York City, Golan did not grow a...


Let the fundraising begin: Relay For Life hosting kick-off event Saturday
02-13-2024 9:42 AM

By ABNER ROJAS

SOUTH DEERFIELD — As Relay For Life of Franklin County gears up for another year of raising money for the American Cancer Society’s life-saving cancer research and programs, organizers are planning a kick-off event on Saturday, Feb. 17, at 10 a.m.The...


Montague chosen for public art training program
02-13-2024 9:42 AM

By ABNER ROJAS

MONTAGUE — With Montague’s inclusion in the 2024 “Making It Public” art program, town officials are learning how to increase the town’s capacity to support and promote public art making.Through the program, offered by the New England Foundation for...


Speaking of Nature: A romantic evening for two birders: To hear the wonderful sounds of the Saw-whet Owl, one must go outside at night
02-12-2024 6:01 AM

By BILL DANIELSON

It was a cold winter’s night and my beautiful wife Susan and I were watching movies. There was a fire crackling in the wood stove, we were enjoying good food and drink and we were both all snoodled up and comfy. It was everything you could have wanted...


Designed by and for older adults: New podcast series, Backyard Oasis, launches out of GCC 
02-09-2024 12:52 PM

By DIANE BRONCACCIO

Is it ever too late to start dancing?On a wintry morning at Greenfield Community College, podcast-host Denise Schwartz and GCC dance teacher Emily Fox discuss the benefits of dance as part of a podcast series called Backyard Oasis.Fox says dance helps...


Sweet messages with a little fun: Three new children’s books by Kathleen Nicoletti
02-09-2024 12:49 PM

By TINKY WEISBLAT

Kathleen Nicoletti of Athol notes in her author biography that she loves reading to the children in her life. That joy is evident in her three new children’s books.At 70 pages, “Ruby the Ruthless” is the longest of the three. It also has the most...


Let’s Talk Relationships: Single on Valentine’s Day? How to be your own valentine
02-09-2024 12:48 PM

By AMY NEWSHORE

Many of us are facing Valentine’s Day with a lack of enthusiasm, to say the least. You may be newly single and are feeling raw and shaky. You may have been on your own for a long time and here you are, solo, once again on this holiday. Or you may find...


Ja’Duke tribute show to raise money for domestic violence crisis services
02-08-2024 2:00 PM

By ANITA FRITZ

TURNERS FALLS — In 1987, 31-year-old Vivian A. Morrissey was fatally strangled by her ex-boyfriend in her Turners Falls home, leaving her two daughters, who have no memory of her because they were a 3-year-old and a 1½-year-old at the time,...


Ashfield cell tower planned for early summer completion
02-08-2024 1:36 PM

By VIRGINIA RAY

ASHFIELD — The Planning Board has granted telecommunications infrastructure developer Vertex Towers a six-month extension on its special permit to build a cell tower on Ridge Hill, a project that has been in the works for more than two years. “The...

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