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January 17, 2018

Loss of PawSox will devastate city, officials say – Quincy Herald-Whig | Illinois & Missouri News, Sports

By AMY ANTHONY

Associated Press

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (AP) – For 40 years, Pawtucket resident Mike Shloul has lived within walking distance of McCoy Stadium, where the PawSox have played home games since 1973.

“I felt like somebody died,” Shloul said of hearing the news that the Pawtucket Red Sox are leaving and might be headed to the neighboring capital city of Providence. The team, he said, is “part of the culture in Pawtucket.”

The expected departure of the Triple-A baseball club takes away one of few bright spots from an old mill town that has never fully recovered from the Great Depression, officials in the Rhode Island city said Tuesday.

“To take the economic activity out of the city’s income stream is a severe blow,” said Robert Billington, a local tourism official who said he was shocked to learn the team’s new owners want to leave.

Boston Red Sox president Larry Lucchino and a group of Rhode Island businessmen announced Monday they had purchased the franchise for an undisclosed amount from the widow of its longtime owner and are planning to move the team. Investor James Skeffington confirmed the new owners are eyeing a piece of land along the Providence River for a new ballpark but said nothing is final.

The new owners said making improvements to McCoy Stadium would be too expensive. The stadium was built in 1942 and renovated in the late 90s.

But Billington, president of the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council, said he thinks McCoy Stadium could be maintained the way Fenway Park in Boston has been.

“If they can make it in Fenway, I think they can make it here,” he said. “I think there’s a desire not to.”

Billington said he had hoped the new owners would want to reinvest in Pawtucket. The city was a major manufacturer during the American Industrial Revolution, but has struggled to improve its economy since the 1930s. It’s now one of the poorest cities in the state, with a median household income of $40,379.

The team brought fame and fun to the city, he said, along with about 750,000 visitors a year.

“There are a lot of businesses that are supported by the PawSox,” Billington said.

That includes the Right Spot Diner, which overlooks the stadium. Owner Julia Tsimikas said Tuesday she is worried about how losing the team will affect the business she and her family opened in 1975.

“It’s going to be a loss for the whole city,” Tsimikas said.

Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebian said there is both an economic and psychological impact to the departure of the team. He said he tried to keep the team in Pawtucket but the city wasn’t “on the radar” of the new owners.

The new owners said if they built a ballpark in Providence they would use their own funds but would ask the city and the state for support.

Billington said any state help should focus on keeping the team in Pawtucket.

“We’re not fighting against anyone,” Billington said. “It’s for Pawtucket. Let’s figure out how to do it here.”

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Loss of PawSox will devastate city, officials say – Quincy Herald-Whig | Illinois & Missouri News, Sports

National park plans remain in infancy


February 16, 2015

After years of talk, planning and incremental phases of development, the historic Blackstone Valley appears headed toward national fame as a National Park, telling the story of the American Industrial Revolution and the immigration that helped fuel it.

But while President Barack Obama signed federal legislation creating the national heritage park, exactly what that higher designation will bring to the National Heritage Corridor, created by Congress in 1986, is still percolating and not ready to be poured into a final form.

“There is going to be a national park, but we don’t know yet what it will be. Its boundaries have yet to be established, and the National Park Service has to set up a management plan,” Charlene Cutler, executive director of the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, said of the development work still pending for the new park.
The planning process of what the new park will offer and look like in the future is just getting started, Cutler noted, and there will be a series of meetings beginning in the near future to discuss those options.

“It is very important for everyone to stay involved and participate in the stakeholder meetings,” she said.

Full story appears on Page A1 of Tuesday’s Call and Tuesday’s Times.

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National park plans remain in infancy

Wirefab Announces Purchase of Fiber Laser Cutting Machine

CAPITAL EQUIPMENT INVESTMENTS CONTINUE FOR WIRE PRODUCTS COMPANY

Worcester, MA – Wirefab, Inc., a leading manufacturer in metal-based products for restaurant equipment manufacturers, bakery, OEM and display industries, has recently purchased a new Trumpf 1030 Fiber Laser Cutting Machine. The new equipment will allow Wirefab to expand its capabilities and supplement the continuous effort to improve efficiency and product offerings.

“For decades we have been a leading supplier of wire and metal products to a wide variety of markets”, said Wirefab Vice President Michael Murdock. “The Trumpf Fiber Laser cutting machine will allow us greater creativity, capability, flexibility, lower costs and quicker turnarounds for our clients”, Murdock said. “This state of the art fiber laser will allow Wirefab to further serve customer needs with capabilities that include cutting up to ½” thick cold rolled steel and stainless steel. Additionally it gives us the ability to cut aluminum and even tubing.”

“Quality and creativity are absolute requirements today. We firmly believe that the combination of our skilled workforce with cutting-edge manufacturing equipment and techniques gives us a distinct advantage that cannot be matched in our industry”, Murdock said.

Wirefab’s capabilities includes design, fulfillment, program rollout, wire forming, wire fabrication, aluminum fabricating including cutting, bending, rolling, forming, stamping and resistance, MIG and TIG welding.

About Wirefab
Wirefab has been supplying wire, sheet metal and aluminum products to multiple markets for 60 years. Wirefab operates an 80,000 square foot manufacturing and distribution facility in Worcester, MA. They are a leading manufacturer in wire-based products for the baked goods industry. Nationally recognized brand leader, Dunkin’ Donuts and convenience store giant 7-Eleven, are just two examples of Wirefab’s bakery clientele. Wirefab produces customized wire bakery baskets, bins, racks, screens, aluminum rolling carts, sheet pan racks and trays. Wirefab also services leading Restaurant Equipment and Electronic OEM’s. Capabilities include wire forming, tube fabrication, aluminum and sheet metal fabrication.

Visit the company’s website at: www.wirefab.com.

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Wirefab Announces Purchase of Fiber Laser Cutting Machine

RI, Mass. map Blackstone River heritage park

PROVIDENCE — Officials from Massachusetts and Rhode Island are figuring out the boundaries of a park along the Blackstone River.

The Providence Journal reports, http://bit.ly/1gE23RO, that officials met Monday in Pawtucket near Old Slater Mill, which is considered the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution in America and will be a key piece of the Blackstone River National Historical Park.

President Barack Obama recently signed legislation establishing Rhode Island’s first national historical park.

It will include the Museum of Work and Culture in Woonsocket and three other sites in Rhode Island and three in Massachusetts. It’s in the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor from Worcester to Providence.

It’s part of an effort to better protect the cultural sites along the river.

___

Information from: The Providence Journal, http://www.providencejournal.com

Source:

RI, Mass. map Blackstone River heritage park

Officials convene in Pawtucket to discuss R.I.’s first national historical park

PAWTUCKET — A month after President Obama signed legislation establishing Rhode Island’s first national historical park, officials held the first meeting on Monday to work out the boundaries of the park along the Blackstone River and develop a management plan.

The meeting was held in downtown Pawtucket, a stone’s throw from Old Slater Mill, which is regarded as the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution in America and will be a key piece of the Blackstone River National Historical Park. The park will also include the Museum of Work and Culture in Woonsocket, as well as three more Rhode Island sites and three sites in Massachusetts.

Officials from both states, as well city and town leaders and representatives of community groups, were at the meeting to start laying the groundwork for the national park, the 402nd in the United States.

“We want to make sure everyone has a voice — the mayors, the planners for all the communities,” said U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, the Rhode Island Democrat who wrote the act that created the new park.

He said the park will be an important cultural resource — and a tourist attraction.

“We can use the park to educate visitors about the history and culture of Rhode Island,” he said. “It’s another reason to come to Rhode Island.”

The park is located within the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, which runs from Worcester to Providence and was established in 1986. The idea for the park was hatched in 2003 as part of an effort to better protect the cultural sites along the river, said Bob Billington, director of the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council.

“The history was always here, but we always wanted the opportunity to tell it on a national level,” he said.

Those many years of work on the proposal for the park have given stakeholders a head-start in the current effort to set it up, said U.S. Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I.

“Our park will begin with this very deep and very rich history of relationships,” he said.

Meghan Kish, the National Park Service superintendent who will oversee the park, said the priorities in the planning process include delineating the park’s boundaries and formulating an overall identity for its separate pieces that include sites in Slatersville and Ashton in Rhode Island and Whitinsville and Hopedale in Massachusetts.

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Officials convene in Pawtucket to discuss R.I.’s first national historical park

Historical park established in Blackstone Valley

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The Blackstone River Valley is the newest national historical park.

U.S. Sen. Jack Reed has been pushing a plan for a Blackstone River Valley National Historical Park for years. The president signed the Rhode Island Democrat’s legislation establishing the park Friday.

The park is along the Blackstone River and includes significant sites in old mill towns and buildings. The Old Slater Mill in Pawtucket, Rhode Island is the first successful cotton-spinning factory in the United States. Sites in North Smithfield and Cumberland, Rhode Island, and Whitinsville and Hopedale, Massachusetts, are also included.

Reed says the Blackstone Valley is a national treasure that is getting the recognition it deserves.

The area is already home to a national heritage corridor that links communities along the Blackstone River from Worcester, Massachusetts, to Providence.

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Historical park established in Blackstone Valley

Cycling: Recent incidents a reminder of perils of riding

Cycling offers the opportunity to enjoy so many wonderful moments; however, like so many sports, danger abounds on the bike.

In the last two weeks, two area cyclists suffered horrible tragedies.

Andrew J. Langlois, 25, of Gardner, died Aug. 29 from injuries suffered in a mountain bike crash in Waterbury, Vermont, three days earlier.

Joan Rougemont, 66, of Sturbridge, was seriously injured when she was struck by a teenage driver allegedly using a cellphone on Route 15 in Sturbridge on Aug. 25.

Langlois was riding alone at an area of Putnam State Forest in Vermont known as Perry Hill when he crashed on Aug. 26. Langlois, who was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, was taken to Fletcher Allen Hospital in Burlington, where he was treated for head and neck injuries. He died from the injuries Aug. 29, state police said.

Jay Provencher, former president of Stowe Mountain Bike Club, said those mountain bike trails, which are situated across the street from his office, are very popular.

Provencher said Langlois was apparently descending a technical trail when the accident occurred. He said a group of local riders found him and called 911.

“They’re very challenging trails where this young man crashed. It’s just bad luck. I understand he was a good rider, but, unfortunately, sometimes bad things happen to good riders,” Provencher said.

“It’s tragic. It’s very, very sad. It’s awful, 25 years old. I feel horrible for his family,” Provencher said.

The riding area is state land, Provencher said, but area riders want to mark the spot in memory of the 25-year-old mountain biker. He said they may contact the family.

“We want to memorialize him somehow. We want to put something up there. We want to do something,” Provencher said.

According to his obituary, Langlois was a carpenter employed by Sisler Builders of Stowe, Vermont. A graduate of Gardner High School in 2007, Langlois graduated magna cum laude from Fitchburg State University.

“Andy lived life to the fullest. He loved the mountains, and was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed hiking, mountain biking, snowboarding and loved to play golf,” according to the obit. Funeral services were held Saturday.

In Sturbridge, Rougemont was riding north on Route 15 in the wide breakdown lane when she was struck by a 17-year-old driver traveling in the same direction who told authorities that he was looking down at his cellphone when the crash occurred, police said.

Rougemont was flown to UMass Memorial Medical Center — University Campus in Worcester after the accident. She was moved four days later to Harrington Healthcare System’s Transitional Care Unit in Webster. She suffered head, neck and back injuries as well as a severe lower leg injury that could require four surgeries, according to her lawyer, Darin Colucci of Boston. He said medical personnel suspect that leg may have gone under the wheel of the car when she was struck. Rougemont is not able to walk and is looking at a long rehabilitation, he said.

“There is no greater scourge right now for cyclists than drivers using cellphones,” Colucci said. “It’s become prolific. It’s sad as can be. It’s quickly becoming the most apparent reason drivers are diverting their attention from the road.”

According to police, the driver was 3 feet into the breakdown lane when the collision occurred.

“It is a fairly wide breakdown lane,” Sturbridge Police Lt. Earl Dessert said last week. “It would be considered a great road to bicycle down because it is a wide breakdown lane. And it is not heavily traveled.”

Dessert said the teen driver will be summoned to court on charges of use of a cellphone while driving under the age of 18, marked lane violation and driving negligently causing bodily injury.

“The amount of time it takes to look down at your phone takes several seconds and the amount you can travel in that time makes it very dangerous,” Dessert said.

Colucci said Rougemont remembers very little of the accident, only that she was riding along the side of the road in the breakdown lane and she heard a sound, and nothing else.

He said the prognosis is difficult to assess until she has several surgical procedures, and he doesn’t know if she will ever return to “pre-accident functionality,” and cycling. He said it will depend on two things, fear of riding and physical capability in the future.

Ride for brain cancer patient

Eight years ago, Ed “Zo” Nowak and fellow Wachusett Mountain ski instructor Rick Scarpignato decided to plan an annual ride with some of their cycling friends.

They mapped out a 78-mile route around the Presidential Range in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The loop has spectacular views and about 5,000 feet of climbing.

Five out of the seven riders that started the ride the first year completed the challenging route. The cycling event became known as the Rizo Ride, named after Rick and “Zo.” The ride has grown over the years, topping out at about 15 to 20 cyclists, most of them affiliated with the ski area.

But this year, Nowak said, the recreational ride has taken on a special meaning.

The Rizo Ride will be a fundraiser for Patty Benz of Leominster, a former ski instructor battling brain cancer. It will be held at 9 a.m. Sept. 13 in Bartlett, New Hampshire.

Benz, described by Nowak as an athletic, energetic and vivacious 56-year-old woman who cooks great Italian meals, has been undergoing treatment at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

Nowak, a Charlton resident, said Benz is a cyclist and participated in the ride one year, but she will not be able to do the ride this year.

“She’s a fighter,” Nowak said. “We’re just trying to help her in any way we can.”

The ride begins at the Covered Bridge Bed and Breakfast in Bartlett. Cyclists will ride west on Route 302 past Attitash Mountain, ascend Crawford Notch then descend past Bretton Woods and the Presidential Hotel. The loop heads to Twin Mountain and stays on Route 3 for 2 miles before heading northeast on Route 115, here cyclists can view the Green Mountains in Vermont. The ride then heads east on Route 2 into Gorham, with views of Mounts Adams, Jefferson and Washington. Next up on the ride is an 8-mile climb to Pinkham Notch before a long descent back to Route 302 and the bed and breakfast.

“It’s challenging, but very scenic, very rewarding. You’ll know it when you’ve done the ride,” Nowak said. “The camaraderie is great. It’s a communal ride.”

Nowak said he is hoping to raise $2,000 in the ride. Anyone interested in participating can visit www.rizoride.org or contact Nowak at zojmn@verizon.net“>zojmn@verizon.net.

In addition, donations are being accepted through a charitable account established at Southbridge Savings Bank in Southbridge. Anyone interested can also purchase a shirt, with proceeds going to the fund.

Calendar

Today — Landmine Classic Mountain and Marathon Bike Race, Wompatuck State Park, Hingham. Root 66 Northeast XC Race Series. Information: www.root66raceseries.com.


10 a.m. Saturday — Seven Hills Wheelmen and Charles River Wheelmen 33-, 46- or 58-mile road ride. Meet at the Mount Wachusett Community College parking lot in Devens. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

10 a.m. Sept. 14 — Seven Hills Wheelmen 24-mile road ride. Meet at Dudley District Court, Route 197 and Lyons Road, Dudley. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.


Sept. 20 — BikeFest Tour of the Valley, Look Park Northampton. Ride options of 8, 25, 43, 72 and 104 miles. Information: bikefest.nohobikeclub.org.


Sept. 20, 21 — Pain in the Mass Tour. One-day ride options on Sept. 20 of 32, 53 and 100 miles. Two-day, 170-mile ride includes Mount Wachusett and Mount Greylock. Rides start Sept. 20 at The International Golf Club in Bolton. Information: www.paininthemass.org.

10 a.m. Sept. 21 — Seven Hills Wheelmen 24-mile road ride. Meet at Dudley District Court, Route 197 and Lyons Road, Dudley. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.


10 a.m. Sept. 28 — Seven Hills Wheelmen 24-mile road ride. Meet at Dudley District Court, Route 197 and Lyons Road, Dudley. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.


Oct. 5 — Major Taylor Century with ride options of 25, 62 and 100 miles, presented by e Seven Hills Wheelmen and 10th Gear/Venture Crew 1010. Hills Wheelmen 24-mile road ride. Starts at River Bend Farm (Visitors Center for Blackstone River and Canal Heritage State Park), 287 Oak St., Uxbridge. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

6 p.m. every Monday
— Seven Hills Wheelmen 15-mile road ride. Meet at Barney’s Bicycle, 582 Park Ave., Worcester. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.


6 p.m. every Monday
— Seven Hills Wheelmen 18-mile road ride. Meet at Southbridge Bicycles, 100 Central St., Southbridge. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

Selected Saturdays or Sundays
— Seven Hills Wheelmen Easy C Rider road rides. Moderately paced bicycle rides, typically 15 to 35 miles, on relatively gentle terrain, on selected Saturdays and Sundays in the Worcester area. Starting times and locations are posted each week at www.easycrider.com. RSVP to Dick Goodman at leader@easycrider.com“>leader@easycrider.com.

www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

6 p.m. every Wednesday — Seven Hills Wheelmen a “Show ‘n’ Go” road ride. Meet at the Old Stone Church, Route 12 and Beaman Street, West Boylston. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

6 p.m. every Friday
— Seven Hills Wheelmen 30-mile road ride. Meet at Southbridge Bicycles, 100 Central St., Southbridge. Information: call (508) 831-0301 or visit www.sevenhillswheelmen.org.

9 a.m. every Saturday
— Southbridge Bicycles road ride. Meet at Southbridge Bicycles, 100 Central St., Southbridge. Information: call (508) 764-3657 or visit www.southbridgebicycles.net.

Submit bike listings to mconti@telegram.com; Mark Conti, Telegram & Gazette, P.O. Box 15012, Worcester, MA 01615-0012; or fax attention to Mark Conti at (508) 793-9363.Contact Mark Conti at mark.conti@telegram.com.

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Cycling: Recent incidents a reminder of perils of riding