North Quabbin briefs

  • The Athol Public Library STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Published: 5/17/2020 12:31:13 PM
Modified: 5/17/2020 12:31:12 PM
Athol Library launches YouTube channel

ATHOL — The Athol Public Library has launched its own YouTube channel. Find it online by searching for “Athol Library YouTube channel” or by entering the following URL:

The library staff has been recording informational videos, craft tutorials, and story times to share with patrons online during this time when we can’t be together in person. So far, there are eight original videos on the library’s YouTube channel.

“We are excited about this new way to offer services to our community,” said Athol Library Director Jean Shaughnessy in a prepared statement. “Staff have been brainstorming ideas for new additions to our YouTube channel and gaining the skills necessary to create the videos. We’re also really appreciative that AOTV has offered to air some of the videos, which will help us reach community members who do not have internet at home.”

Although the Athol Public Library is currently closed to the public until further notice due to COVID-19 precautions, its resources are available online 24/7. Readers are encouraged to visit the library website at to learn about other resources that are available from anywhere with an internet connection.

If you would like more information about the library call (978) 249-9515 or email

Orange Farmers Market to open June 4

ORANGE —The Orange Farmers Market will be open from June 4 to Oct. 15. The location, at the Orange Armory, 135 East Main Street, and the hours, 3 to 6 p.m., remain the same as last year. The market opening has been delayed three weeks from its usual mid-May date, in order to ensure that it takes the appropriate steps to ensure customer and vendor safety in light of the COVID–19 outbreak.

The Orange Farmers Market Committee is working with town officials to ensure appropriate safeguards are in place to minimize COVID-19 exposure.

North Central Mass. Development Corp. receives federal loan

The North Central Massachusetts Development Corp. has received a $500,000 loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration to bolster its micro-lending program and expand its lending efforts to support small businesses in the region. The loan must be repaid over a 10-year period. Grant dollars it received from the state were also used to help support the SBA’s requirement for matching funds for a Loan Loss Reserve.

With these funds, the North Central Massachusetts Development Corp. can continue to provide SBA loans of up to $50,000 to small businesses in the region. The U.S. Small Business Administration provides funds to specially designated intermediary lenders, which administer the microloan program for eligible borrowers.

This is the third such loan that the North Central Massachusetts Development Corp. has received since being approved as an SBA Microloan Intermediary in 2015. These loans have allowed the NCMDC to grant nearly $1,000,000 in SBA microloans to start ups and expanding businesses.

“Access to capital is a major issue for many small businesses, who are struggling to survive amid the unprecedented economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 public health crisis,” said Roy M. Nascimento, President and CEO of the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce and the North Central Massachusetts Development Corp., in a prepared statement. “This infusion of much needed capital will help shore up our lending capacity and allow us to continue to support small businesses who need financing but are unable to secure it through traditional means.”

The North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation works in partnership with local banks, credit unions, chambers of commerce and area nonprofits to support emerging microenterprises, small businesses and community projects in 76 communities in Worcester, Middlesex and Franklin counties with loans and business assistance. Since 1996, the it granted over $7,000,000 in loans to small businesses to help grow jobs and the economy in the region.

For more information about applying for a microloan or the other loan programs available, contact Sandie Cataldo, economic development manager, at 978-353-7600 ext 232 or visit

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