‘Catmas’ & ‘Howliday’ Caroling to Raise Funds for Kitty Connection

Christmas catLet’s spread some Pawliday Cheer!!

Kitty Connection is Howliday and Catmas Caroling this year! Your loved one could be serenaded by the Pawsome Kitty Connection Carolers this Holiday Season!

Contact Candice at catmascarol@gmail.com or call 617-420-2280 to set up a carol-gram package for your family and friends!

Dec 20th – 24th

6:00 – 8:00pm

- Information from Kitty Connection

MVTHS Culinary Arts Holiday Bake Sale December 19

holiday cookies

Save the date- the vocational school’s Culinary Arts program is holding its annual holiday bake sale on Friday, Dec. 19th from 8:30-11:30am in the main lobby at Medford High School.

The sale will feature delicious contemporary and traditional holiday baked goods and hand-dipped gourmet chocolates prepared by MVTHS Culinary Arts students.

All baked goods are prepared from scratch and are attractively packaged for gift giving or for the holiday table.

- Information from the MVTHS Culinary Arts Department

Middlesex DA Launches 2015 Infant Safe Sleep Awareness Campaign

Cold Winter Months Increase Risk Factors for Infant Deaths

DA Ryan and baby

Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan announced a new county-wide Safe Sleep Awareness Campaign to reduce Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) at Winchester Hospital on Thursday.

In attendance were nearly 100 community partners from the fields of law enforcement, healthcare, social services and child welfare. Joining District Attorney Ryan at the event were State Senator Jason Lewis, Winchester Hospital CEO Kevin Smith, Chairman of the Winchester Hospital Board of Directors Paul Andrews, and Kathy Schuler, Vice President of Patient Care and Chief Nursing Officer at Winchester Hospital. Also attending the event were several police chiefs from Middlesex County: Arlington Chief Fred Ryan, Belmont Chief Richard McLaughlin, Lincoln Chief Kevin Kennedy, Stoneham Chief James McIntyre, Wakefield Chief Rick Smith, Weston Chief Kevin Mooney, and Woburn Chief Robert Ferullo. The 2015 awareness campaign, “Safe Sleep, Safe Babies,” was developed by District Attorney Ryan and members of the Middlesex Safe Babies, Safe Kids Task Force (SBSK).

“With winter upon us, now is a particularly important time to raise awareness about this important public safety issue. As the temperature outside declines, parents and caregivers may be tempted to turn the heat up inside, overdress their baby or put blankets in the crib,” said District Attorney Ryan. “What we know from the research, from the medical experts, and from having investigated cases of infant deaths ourselves, is that we can reduce the risk for SUID by not exposing babies to overheating and hazards in the crib. Overheating and suffocation are completely preventable, yet we know these to be factors in infant deaths nationwide, and historically we’ve seen these deaths increase during the colder months of the year.”

The Middlesex District Attorney’s State Police CPAC Unit responds to and investigates all unattended deaths in Middlesex County, including those involving infants. Over the last five years, the Middlesex Child Fatality Review Team, led by District Attorney Ryan, has reviewed 19 cases of infant deaths that occurred while sleeping.

SUID is the leading cause of deaths among babies in their first year of life. In 2010, more than 2,000 babies in the United States died of SUIDs. According to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, it is the third leading cause of death statewide for children under the age of 12 months. In Massachusetts, 30 to 50 deaths are attributed to SUID each year.

To decrease the chances of SUID, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the following:
– Placing an infant for sleep on his/her back until the age of 1;
– Placing the baby on a firm sleep surface covered by a tight-fitted sheet;
– Keeping soft objects and loose bedding out of the crib, such as pillows, blankets, quilts, comforters, sheepskins, toys, stuffed animals and bumper pads;
– Having the infant’s crib, portable crib, play yard, or bassinet in the parents’ bedroom close to the parents’ bed;
– Room-sharing is recommended, but bed- sharing is not advised because it can result in suffocation, strangulation and entrapment;
– Preventing overheating by not overdressing infants;
– Avoiding over bundling and covering of the head and face;
– Dressing infants in clothing appropriate for their environment;
– Avoiding smoking, during and after pregnancy, and exposing a baby to second-hand smoke.

Experts also advise that room temperature be regulated between 68-72 degrees at all times of the year. Signs of overheating include sweating and/or the infant’s chest being hot to the touch.

This event marks the beginning of a series of county-wide risk reduction initiatives led by District Attorney Ryan and the Safe Baby, Safe Kids Task Force. This effort will include outreach to OB/Gyn and pediatric offices; educational materials for parents and caregivers; free regional community workshops for expectant and new parents on sleep safety; a smartphone app that promotes safe sleep tips; and a cable access show that will made available to stations across Middlesex County.

“The Safe Babies, Safe Kids Task Force has been doing great work in our communities, and I know that the 2015 Safe Sleep Awareness Campaign will help save more lives,” said Senator Jason Lewis. “I’m especially grateful to Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan for her longstanding leadership on prevention and wellness efforts.”

“The health and safety of our babies is the highest priority,” said Kathy Schuler, Vice President of Patient Care at Winchester Hospital. “The District Attorney’s Safe Sleep Awareness Campaign is an important step towards informing parents about safe sleep practices and we’re proud to work with District Attorney Ryan in helping to promote such an essential issue for parents.”

District Attorney Ryan created the SBSK Task Force in 2009 as a multi-disciplinary, cross-sector partnership to address issues of health and safety affecting babies and children in Middlesex County. SBSK partners include: Winchester Hospital; Melrose-Wakefield Hospital; Mount Auburn Hospital; Brigham and Women’s Hospital; Lowell General Hospital; Emerson Hospital; Newton-Wellesley Hospital; Holy Family Hospital; Tufts Medical Center; Metro West Free Medical Program; the Massachusetts Medical Society; the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families; the Massachusetts Department of Public Health; Children’s Trust; the Middlesex Sheriff’s Office; and the School of Nursing and Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Middlesex County is the most populous county in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the twenty-third most populous county in the United States. There are more than 1.5 million residents in the county, and of those 85,000 are under the age of 5. District Attorney Ryan has prioritized the protection of children both in an out of the courtroom. Under her leadership, SBSK has produced and distributed educational materials to parents, caregivers and other stakeholders on topics such as Water Safety, Window Safety and Car Safety. The office’s Child Protection Unit– comprised of 9 Assistant District Attorneys, 5 Victim Witness Advocates, and 3 Child Interview Specialists– is a specialized unit charged with investigating and prosecuting crimes against children, and is actively engaged in the office’s community outreach and public education initiatives.

For more information about SUID, including additional recommendations for parents and caregivers, please review the policy statement published by the American Academy of Pediatrics: http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2011/10/12/peds.2011-2284.

To learn more about the Middlesex Safe Babies, Safe Kids Task Force (SBSK) and to download educational materials, please visit http://middlesexda.com/prevention/safe-babies-safe-kids.php.

Pictured: Middlesex DA Ryan visits with new mom Wendy Giblin and baby John, patients at Winchester Hospital

- Submitted by Middlesex DA Marion Ryan’s office

Medford Receives $200K from Wynn Resorts

Wynn Resorts presented a $200,000 check to Medford Mayor Michael McGlynn today to support the Krystle Campbell Memorial Peace Garden in Medford. The payment is part of a Surrounding Community Agreement between the city and Wynn, which was awarded the Greater Boston gaming license and is building a $1.6 billion, five-star resort in Everett.

The Peace Garden honors the memory of Medford native Krystle Campbell who was killed in the Boston Marathon bombing. Along with remembering all victims of the 2013 attack, the $1 million garden on Riverside Avenue will be a public gathering place that will inspire humanity, diversity and inclusion. The design features seating areas, walkways and a sunflower garden, which was Krystle’s favorite flower.

“This garden is like Krystle…beautiful and full of life,” said Robert DeSalvio, President of Wynn Everett, who presented the $200,000 check to Mayor McGlynn and William Campbell III, Krystle’s brother. “From the moment we first saw the design, we were impressed with the meaning and symbolism behind every element. It’s a wonderful place for enjoyment, reflection and appreciation that we’re honored to be part of. It’s a beautiful and fitting tribute that’s special, just like she was.”

- Information from Wynn Resorts

Grace Episcopal Church Announces Holiday Schedule

Grace Episcopal Church

Celebrate the Season!

Grace Episcopal Church invites you to celebrate Christmas with us!

All are welcome!

Christmas Eve Services:

4:00PM Children and Family Service
7:00PM Festive Candlelight Service with Choir

Christmas Lessons and Carols with Holy Eucharist
10:00AM Sunday, December 28th (no 8:00AM or 5PM services)

Grace Episcopal Church
160 High Street
Medford, MA 02155

- Submitted by the Reverend Noah H. Evans, Rector, Grace Episcopal Church. Photo by Doug Shoop.

Harvard Street to be Closed Briefly for Green Line Construction Work Dec. 20th & 21st

Green Line construction

The section of Harvard Street between Main Street and Boston Avenue will be closed for a brief period this weekend due to Green Line extension-related construction. Crews will be rebuilding the Harvard Street Rail Bridge. According to a notice released by the state’s Green Line Extension team, Harvard Street will be closed beginning at 4AM on Saturday, December 20 and will reopen on Sunday, December 21 at 9PM. Sidewalks under the Harvard Street bridge will also be closed at that time. Traffic detour information is available on the Green Line Extension website.

- Information and photo from MassDOT.

2 Local Delegates Stand Out at Student U.N. Conference

Student UN delegatesBack row from left are Gabrielle Yamamoto, Pranav Sriramulu, Oscar Berry, Connor Bresnahan, Isabella Liu; front row from left are Tyler McNabb, Miller, Varun Gopal and (standing leaning over a chair) Kiely-Song.

Two participants in the Arlington Regional Model United Nations program’s middle-school club in the November United Nations Association of Greater Boston’s Middle School Model U.N. Conference at Northeastern University were chosen distinguished delegates.

Milo Kiely-Song (sixth grade, Ottoson Middle School) and Ansel Miller (seventh grade, Andrews Middle School, Medford) were invited to a special invitational model U.N. conference, held Dec. 12.

At the latter conference, the pair joined 80 other students who were the award winners from among the 450 students at the Nov. 22 conference. They participated in a fast-paced, high-pressure crisis committee that started with the current Ebola crisis and developed from that point.

Miller drew the role of defense minister of China, and Kiely-Song the role of political minister of Liberia. Both had about 30 minutes and limited materials to prepare to play their roles in the debate for the day. Both boys did an excellent job, but Miller was selected as one of the three best delegates of the day and awarded the Best Defense Minister Award.

Students who attended the November conference included Isabella Liu of Cambridge, Gabrielle Yamamoto of Medford, Varun Gopal of Arlington (an Ottoson student), Connor Bresnahan of Cambridge (at the Cambridge Friends School), Pranav Sriramulu of Arlington (Ottoson), Tyler McNabb of Saugus and Oscar Berry of Cambridge (International School of Boston).

Twelve students representing the Arlington Regional Model U.N. Middle School Club are preparing for the Jan. 31-Feb. 1 Boston University Academy Model U.N. Conference.

The club has space for four additional students for this conference, and students would have time to prepare to participate if they began in the club at the beginning of January.

If you have any questions about the Middle School Club, email armun2013@gmail.com or contact the club director, Kim Kay Holt, at kimkayholt@gmail.com or by cell phone at 857-312-2317.

The clubs’ website, which will be updated over the winter holidays, can be found at www.arlingtonregionalmun.weebly.com.

- YourArlington.com

Tufts, Somerville Police Investigate Swastika Graffiti

- Allison Goldsberry

Tufts University and Somerville Police are searching for those responsible for painting several swastikas on a campus building, according to published and broadcast reports.

According to The Boston Globe, swastikas defaced the Powder House Boulevard side of Lewis Hall. Tufts Police said the markings are “very similar” to graffiti left on both campus and public property in Somerville in November.

Tufts Police released the following statement:

“As President Monaco has said in the past, such deplorable acts, which are counter to the values of the Tufts community, are deeply concerning. We are taking this incident extremely seriously.”

Both TUPD and Somerville Police are investigation the incident. Anyone with information is urged to contact TUPD at 617-627-3030 (x73030) or Somerville Police at 617-625-1600.

Caroling at Carroll’s Monday, December 15th

Carroll's Restaurant

Marsha Caron and members of the Medford High School Alumni Band will perform holiday carols at Carroll’s Restaurant starting ta 6:00PM on Monday, December 15, according to owner Maury Carroll. Carroll’s is located at 21 Main Street in Medford Square.

– InsideMedford.com

Governor, State Boards of Education to Meet at MHS Monday, December 15th

On Monday, December 15 Medford will host a joint meeting of the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and the State Board of Early Education and Care. Governor Deval Patrick will be in attendance and address both boards. The meeting is scheduled to start at 5:00 P.M. in the Caron Theater at Medford High School.

The theme of this special joint meeting is “Building the foundation for early literacy and student success.”

The agenda will include two major presentations:

– Dr. Ralph Smith, Managing Director of the Annie Casey Foundation’s Campaign for Grade Level Reading, will discuss key challenges and approaches to meeting that goal

– EEC and ESE Staff presentation on current inter-agency collaboration to strengthen early learning and possible next steps

Medford has a very comprehensive Early Education Program. We have repeatedly stressed the importance of closing the Preparation Gap” as a prerequisite to closing the Achievement Gap. While it has taken a while, we are gaining traction on this issue and hope that the state will help us increase our resources in support of early learning goals.

All are welcome to attend this important event!

In addition, the Board of Early Education and Care will meet at 3:00pm in the library at Medford High School.

- Information from the Medford Public Schools