Columns

As many people remember, or currently know for the teenagers out there, being 17-years-old can be hard no matter who you are. Few 17-year-olds can acknowledge that their problems are mostly in-the-moment issues that will some day become small and meaningless. In ‘The Edge of Seventeen,’ released...
Winter creates winners and losers in the animal world. Birds and animals living in northern climates like we have here in the North Quabbin Region have adaptations that have made it possible for them to survive winter. Even with those adaptations, not all wildlife survives winter and that is just...
DEAR PET TALK: How many times do you have to change the litter box if you have a cat? — Trixie, age 7 DEAR TRIXIE: Your kitty will be most appreciative if you (or your parents) clean the litter box frequently. Ideally, it’s every time she goes. Many stores sell a slotted scooper, so you can...
Q. — Dear EarthTalk: Isn’t the increasing urbanization of our world good for reducing our carbon footprint given the efficiency benefits of greater density? —Simon Vorhees, Oak Park, IL A. — No doubt, the increased density of big cities leads to less energy use and fewer greenhouse gas...
Editor’s Note: Questions should be directed to the PC Doctor, care of the Athol Public Library at info@athollibrary.org or by mail at Athol Public Library, 568 Main St., Athol, Mass. 01331, or dropped off at the library. ****** Dear PC Doctor: I heard that there’s a way to find out more...
For the second time in nearly three years North Fitzwilliam Road in Royalston is closed to through traffic. These closures allow for much-needed repairs to our road where it spans the Lawrence Brook.  This is a particularly beautiful section of our neighborhood. After winding its way through our...
The U.S. Postal Service will issue a new five-cent stamp on Feb. 24 featuring two clusters of grapes. This self-adhesive will be issued in panes of 20 stamps. Grapevine, Texas, 74051 is the first-day city for this stamp, which is part of an ongoing definitive series featuring fruits. There...
“No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor.” This is the welcome that I felt when I moved to Orange from the Boston area seven years ago. People were easy to meet and incredibly helpful when it came to places to hike, shop, eat, and find reliable contractors. Orange is The...
Sometimes when one is stuck in a rut they feel they need to do something drastic to improve their life. Sometimes it works, sometimes it makes their life even crazier. In 2016’s ‘Whiskey Tango Foxtrot,’ we see what can happen when both outcomes happen.  In 2003, Kim Baker, played by Tina Fey (30...
Across the United States, children can learn riflery and firearm safety through their local 4-H club. Forty-eight of the 50 states have 4-H youth shooting programs. However, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, which oversees the 4-H program in this state, has rejected a proposal to teach...

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