Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

April 4, 2013

News in brief: Shorter news items from around the region


The Andover Townsman

---- — Andover Housing Authority to replace windows with $300,000 from state

The Andover Housing Authority has been awarded $306,590 in “formula funding” from the Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development for fiscal year 2015. Chairman James Cuticchia reports the money will be used to replace all Frye Circle apartment windows.

Frye Circle is a town property located at 256 North Main St. There are 96 apartments and each apartment has two large windows. The 192 windows will be replaced with vinyl clad double hung windows and it is expected that the work will begin in April 2014.

The Andover Housing Authority also has been awarded $25,500 for trimming trees and removing some trees on all AHA properties, replacing iron handrails in Chestnut Court and replacing main door units and thresholds in the double decker buildings of Chestnut Court, according to a release. Work on these items is expected to commence sometime during April.

2013 rabies clinic

The Andover Animal Hospital will conduct the annual rabies vaccination clinic for dogs and cats on Saturday, April 13 from 8:30 a.m. to noon at its office at 233 Lowell Street.

The cost of the vaccination will be $10 per animal. All animals should be leashed or restrained.

Rabies vaccinations will be good for three years if you bring proof (current rabies certificate) that your pet has been immunized within the past year. Otherwise, the vaccination will be good for only one year.

State law requires that all dogs and cats must be vaccinated against rabies by six months of age and must be three months of age before they can be vaccinated.

If residents have not yet licensed their dogs for 2013, contact the Town Clerk’s Office for further information at 978-623-8255.

Free community head and neck cancer screenings

Holy Family Hospital is offering a series of free head and neck cancer screenings during the month of April.

Morning and afternoon screenings are available on Thursday, April 11 and Tuesday, April 16 through Friday, April 19.

Appointments are required and will take place at the following locations: Andover Ear Nose & Throat Center, 198 Massachusetts Ave., North Andover; Colden Seymour Ear, Nose & Throat, 200 Sutton St., Suite #100, North Andover; Holy Family Hospital’s Cancer Center, 70 East St., Methuen.

Individuals who can answer yes to any of the following questions are encouraged to be screened: Do you smoke or chew tobacco? Are you more than a ‘social’ drinker? Do you have a history of head and neck cancer? Do you have a lump in your mouth, throat or neck that won’t heal? A sore that will not go away? Or have difficulty swallowing?

Appointments are required and can be made by calling Holy Family’s DoctorFinder service at 800-488-5959. Location will be confirmed at the time your appointment is scheduled.

Cholesterol screening for town residents

The Andover Board of Health is holding a cholesterol screening clinic on Thursday, April 11, from 9 a.m. until noon. An appointment is necessary. The clinic is for Andover residents only.

The simple finger stick test costs $5 and does not require fasting. For an appointment call the Andover Health Department at 978-623-8295.

This program is made possible through a grant from the Andover Home for Aged People.

LGH CEO named to State Health Policy Council

Dianne J. Anderson, CEO of Lawrence General Hospital, was named to the Health Policy Commission Advisory Council by Health Policy Commission Executive Director David Seltz.

The Council brings together a wide range of health care leaders from an array of fields to guide the HPC’s implementation of the state’s landmark health care cost containment law.

HPC’s Advisory Council will advise on the HPC’s overall operations and policies, and is charged with implementing a new health care cost control law, developing policies to reduce overall cost growth, and monitoring health care delivery.

Budget forum moved to April 10

The League of Women Voter’s budget forum has been changed to Wednesday, April 10. The League of Women Voters of Andover/North Andover encourages residents to prepare for Annual Town Meeting by attending the forum at 7 p.m. in the School Committee Room, 36R Bartlet St., second floor of the School Administration Building.

The forum is expected to bring together leaders of town government to discuss issues and answer citizen questions about the FY 2014 budget. The forum will be televised live and taped for Andover TV, Comcast Channel 99 and Verizon Channel 43.

Andover recognizing National Public Health Week

The Andover Health Department has announced activities for the month of April set to bring attention to National Public Health Week. Public Health Week celebrates the work local health departments do on a day-to-day basis to care for the citizens they serve. The theme for 2013 is “Public Health is ROI: Save Lives, Save Money.” ROI stands for “Return on Investment.”

The Public Health Museum in Tewksbury also is holding several events that are free and open to the public. Visit their website for the schedule: publichealthmuseum.org.

As part of the effort, upcoming Andover health events include the following:

Adults wishing to be vaccinated against pneumonia and TdaP (tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis) can call for details and appointments.

Blood pressure clinics will be conducted every Wednesday at the Andover Senior Center from 2 to 3 p.m. on a walk-in basis.

A Sharps Disposal Day, in conjunction with the Andover Police Department and a DEA Medication Disposal Day, will be held on Saturday, April 27 at the West Middle School from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

A public health display and information table will be set up at the Memorial Hall Library.

Residents seeking further information may call the Andover Health Department at 978-623-8295.

Help replace veterans’ grave flags

On Sunday, April 14, Andover veterans, cadets, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts and interested citizens will meet at 11 a.m. at Spring Grove Cemetery off Abbot Street to replace 3,600 flags on the graves of deceased Andover veterans.

The process takes about 90 minutes and affords an opportunity to see parts of Andover’s history up close., according to the town veterans services office.

In case of inclement weather the flags will be placed on graves at 11 a.m. on Sunday, April 21.

For more information, call the Andover Veterans Services Office at 978-623-8218.

Volunteers needed for PMC

The Pan-Massachusetts Challenge is seeking volunteers to help with registration, medical support, bike repairs, luggage transportation, security, food service, set-up and clean-up during the two-day bike-a-thon that spans 190 miles across the Commonwealth. Volunteer registration is underway for the 34th annual PMC, which is set for Aug. 2 through 4.

Since its inception in 1980, the PMC has raised $375 million to support adult and pediatric patient care and cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. More than 3,200 volunteers help the PMC keep its operating expenses low, making it possible for 100 percent of every rider-raised dollar to be dedicated to the cause. In 2012, the PMC generated 52 percent of the Jimmy Fund’s annual revenue.

For more information about the PMC, or to register to volunteer, visit pmc.org.

Red Cross blood drives in April

The American Red Cross will hold a community blood drive on Monday, April 29 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Andover/North Andover YMCA, 165 Haverhill St.

All eligible and new blood donors are encouraged to give blood. Blood donors are needed everyday to ensure an adequate blood supply for patients in need.

All presenting blood donors will receive a free pair of socks from New Balance.

To make an appointment to donate blood, please call 1-800-RED CROSS (733-2767) or redcrossblood.org.

Greenscapes groups seeks pet-owners’ help

Did you know that unscooped dog poop can pollute local waters? This spring, the town of Andover is partnering with the Greenscapes North Shore to make people more award of the importance of picking up after one’s pets.

Greenscapes North Shore is made up of three organizations from across the North Shore — Salem Sound Coastwatch, the Ipswich River Watershed Association, the Eight Towns and the Great Marsh Committee. A release from the group says dog waste has twice as much bacteria as human waste and notes that rain washes these bacteria into the nearest bodies of water —untreated.

Children are especially vulnerable to the parasites, viruses and bacteria involved. The symptoms are: flu-like, vomiting, diarrhea, ear infections, rashes and fever.

To spread the word about the importance of scooping after one’s pet, the Greenscapes Program has created an information card for Andover citizens with facts and tips about how to keep dog waste out of our waters. These cards are available at local veterinary offices and at the town clerk’s office where dog owners come to purchase dog licenses.

The Greenscapes effort seeks to have pet owners always bring bags and put filled bags in a trash can, never in a recycling bin or a storm drain.

Gently used children’s items for sale

Nashoba Valley MoM, a nonprofit organization, will hold a sale of gently used children’s items on Saturday, April 6 from 8 a.m. to noon at Central Congregational Church, 1 Worthen St., Chelmsford.

Items for sale include baby equipment, toys, clothes, books and more. Only cash accepted. For more information, visit nashobavalleymom.org or call 978-376-2939.

ENHC annual spring meeting

The Essex National Heritage Commission will hold its annual spring meeting on Wednesday, April 10 at Winnekenni Castle, 347 Kenoza Ave., Haverhill.

A continental breakfast reception will begin at 8 a.m., followed by a business meeting from 8:30 to 10 a.m. Essex Heritage Partnership Grant recipients will be announced. For more information or to RSVP, call 978-740-0444.

2013 Priceless Prom Gown Program

Teens looking for some help in attending their prom have a local organization to which they can turn: the Priceless Prom Gown Program.

Upcoming boutique dates for the Priceless Prom Gown Program will be held April 6 and 27 from noon to 5 p.m. The program’s boutique is located behind the Everett Mill in the historic Stone Mill at 15 Union St. in Lawrence.

The PPGP is a non profit 501(c)3 program that is in its seventh year that helps local high school students to attend their proms who otherwise might not be able to do so due to financial hardship or family circumstances.

“Local financially challenged teenagers are encouraged to come and choose the perfect prom gown and accessories for a nominal donation of $10. We even have a few tuxedos for the boys,” the group says in a release. “We are proud to be able to offer this opportunity through the help of private and local business donations and tireless volunteers.”

For information about Priceless Prom Gown Program, or to make a donation, visit the website pricelesspromgownprogram.com or contact carol@pricelesspromgownprogram.com.

GLCAC Inc offers free tax services to low/moderate-income families

Free tax services for low- to moderate-income families and individuals are available from the Greater Lawrence Community Action Council Inc., which is participating in the IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.

GLCAC Inc.’s volunteers will offer free tax help to people earning $51,000 or less and who need assistance in preparing their own tax returns.

The tax preparers will also help families file for the Earned Income Tax Credit, which could mean a tax refund for families.

Tax return services will be available Tuesdays and Thursdays between 4 and 8 p.m. through April 11.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 978-620-4669. Clients are expected to bring financial records to their appointments, and if filing jointly, both individuals must be present. A full list of required records is available at glcac.org.

Andover Choral Society seeks new singers

The Andover Choral Society invites new members to join it for its final concert of the group’s 83rd season.

A gala performance of arias, choruses, and ensembles from favorite operas will be presented on Sunday, April 28, at 3 p.m. at the Rogers Center for the Arts at Merrimack College. Professional Boston-area soloists will add to the festivities.

The rehearsals are Mondays at 7:20 to 9:30 p.m. at Christ Church, 25 Central St. in Andover. For more information call 603-893-5636. The Andover Choral Society is sponsored in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Mass. boating basics course

The Massachusetts Environmental Police and Andover Sportsman’s Club will offer a boating basics course at the Andover Sportsman’s Club, 655 Middleton Road, North Andover.

Classes are April 30, May 7, 14, 21 and 28 from 7 to 9 p.m. Participants must attend all classes.

Students must be at least 12 years of age. Youth 12 through 15 years of age who successfully complete the course will be issued a safety certificate allowing them to operate a motorboat without adult supervision, as required by state law. This course will also satisfy the state requirements for personal watercraft users who are 16 or 17 years of age.

All graduates will be issued a safety certificate.

Registration is required at mass.gov/ole.