Third-grade students in Ayer, Shirley and Harvard recently received dictionaries from the Rotary Club of Ayer, Harvard, Shirley and Devens. The dictionaries are a gift to each student to use at school and at home for years to come.

"Look, it includes the longest word," said one excited student to his teacher as his classmates eagerly flipped through the pages of the dictionaries, each inscribed with their names. Rotarians visited the elementary schools in the three towns to personally deliver the dictionaries during class assemblies and to congratulate the students on pursuing their education.

Over three years, the Rotary Club has given more than 500 dictionaries to students. The effort is part of the nationwide Dictionary Project which seeks to provide the reference work to help students become good writers, active readers, creative thinkers and resourceful learners.

Supporting education both locally and internationally is an important cause for Rotary International and the Rotary Club of Ayer, Harvard, Shirley and Devens, which also annually provides college scholarships to graduating seniors and supported development of a school in Liberia.

The Rotary Club of Ayer, Harvard, Shirley and Devens also contributes to local charitable causes and operated the Ramps to Freedom Project, which builds handicapped ramps at no charge on the homes of housebound people in the area.


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The club raises funds for its projects with fundraisers supported by the community, including the world-famous Ducky Wucky River Race and Apple Blossom Festival, held annually in Harvard in May.

The Rotary Club is comprised of business professionals who live or work in the Ayer, Harvard, Shirley and Devens area and who interested in community service both locally and internationally. Anyone interested in joining the Ayer Rotary Club is invited to attend a weekly Thursday meeting, starting at 6:30 p.m., at the Bull Run Restaurant. For more information, contact ayerrotary@gmail.com.