North Quabbin Briefs

Published: 12/14/2019 7:04:21 AM
Modified: 12/14/2019 7:04:20 AM
Midnight Madness returns

Looking for a great way to shop for gifts while supporting the local economy? Midnight Madness, which features local businesses, artisans and holiday cheer, is being held Saturday, Dec. 14, 6 p.m. to 11:55 p.m. in downtown Athol.

Sponsored by the North Quabbin Chamber and Visitors Bureau, the night features prizes and gift certificates from local businesses and artisans, including three prize packages worth over $2,000 and deep discounts, some up to 50 percent or more.

bankHometown holding annual Holiday Pajama Drive

OXFORD – Robert J. Morton, president and CEO of bankHometown, announced that the bank will once again hold its annual holiday Pajama Time drive to help keep local children warm this winter season.

Customers, employees, neighbors, businesses, and community members are invited to donate brand new, unworn pajama sets, nightgowns, and slippers. While all donations are appreciated, children’s sizes 4T and up as well as women’s sizes small and medium are needed most. All of the sleepwear collected will be distributed to local community schools and organizations expressing the greatest need.

Donations can be made through Dec. 19 at any of bankHometown’s 15 branch locations. Visit for a list of branches.

“Winters can be especially hard on families, given the added expenses for clothing and other necessities,” said Morton. “bankHometown invites the community to come together during this season of giving to ensure children in need stay warm and comfortable.”

bankHometown was founded in 1889 and is headquartered in Oxford. For information, visit

Make-A-Wish Seeks Wish Volunteers in Worcester County

Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island, which creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses, is currently looking for individuals to become Wish volunteers in Worcester County.

The organization plans to grant nearly 420 wishes this year across the two states. It is particularly seeking bilingual volunteers.

Cynthia Dunsky has been a Make-A-Wish volunteer since 2017 and recently helped grant Sariah’s wish to go to Hawaii. Sariah is a 5-year-old liver transplant recipient who has undergone countless medical procedures and must still take medication to prevent her body from rejecting her liver. Her wish gave her a chance to just be a little child and have her dreams come true.

“It is one of the most gratifying feelings to be able to play a role in creating a magical time for a sick child and their family. To be able to give a child such a beautiful gift in the midst of their journey, so that they can just be a kid and enjoy something that they love. It is so humbling and rewarding to know that my contribution has put a smile on a face and a cherished memory in a heart,” said Dunsky.

Wish volunteers work in teams of two to create life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses and have support from the Make-A-Wish staff. All wish granting volunteers must be over 21 and submit an application, reference and background check; and complete an online or in-person training to begin granting wishes. Take the first step and register for an upcoming training at

For further information, contact Krista Bishop at or call 617.367.9474. To learn more about Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island, visit

Athol Bird & Nature Club 2020 calendars are now available

The calendars are now available for purchase through the following local merchants: Trail Head, Quabbin Harvest, and Mount Tully Kennels in Orange; Flowerland, Cornerstone Insurance, MacMannis Florist, Elsewear, and the North Quabbin Community Coalition in Athol; the New Salem General Store in New Salem; the Red Apple Farm in Phillipston; the Petersham Craft Center, and Harvard Forest in Petersham; the Hardwick Farmers Co-op in Gilbertville; the Country Store in South Royalston; the Kitchen Garden in Templeton; the Wendell Country Store in Wendell; Connecticut River Liquors in Turners Falls; and the Wine Rack in Greenfield.

This great seasonal gift costs $10.

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