Pistol course

AYER — The Ayer Gun & Sportsmen’s Club will host an NRA Basic Pistol Course over the weekend of Feb. 10 and 11. The two-day class will start at 9 a.m. each day and will conclude at around 3 p.m. The course is open to anyone age 18 and older.

The club is located at 255 Snake Hill Road, Ayer. For more information call the club at (978) 772-9748.

Veterans grants

REGIONAL — The Massachusetts Division of Career Services has received a Veterans Training Grant from the Department of Labor that provides money to Massachusetts veterans who want to upgrade their skills by attending an approved educational facility. For additional information, Massachusetts veterans may call any of the following: Workforce Central in Southbridge, (508) 765-6430; Workforce Central in Milford, (508) 478-4300; or Workforce Central in Worcester, (508) 799-8020.

Elias Fund speakers

PEPPERELL — Eric and Scott Byington, directors of The Elias Fund, a non-profit organization providing community development and educational scholarships to people in Zimbabwe, will be speaking at Lawrence Academy on Tuesday, Feb. 6.

Their presentation, which will take place in the Williams Arts Center Recital Hall, will begin at 10 a.m. In their remarks, they will cover the current economic, social and political issues facing the people of Zimbabwe, as well as draw from their personal experiences from their time spent working in Africa, to answer questions.

The Elias Fund is also hosting a fund-raiser at O’Naturals of Acton from 4 to 8 p.m., with the Old Silver Band and two members of Tin Can Tele performing covers. O’Naturals, 149 Great Road (Route 119) in Acton, will donate 10 percent of the evening’s profits to the fund.

Valentine’s Coffeehouse

GROTON — Want to get a jump on celebrating Valentine’s Day? Join us for a community coffeehouse on Saturday, Feb. 10, at the First Parish Church of Groton. Snuggle up to heartfelt music that will get your toes tapping and your blood moving!

Area musicians will entertain you in a relaxed setting, encouraging your heart to sing. Performers include The Lost Chord, Ash Brook Haines, Patrick Hughes, Mary Torgersen and Raymond Henry, Andrew Watson, and A Touch of Jazz. Directed by Shawn McCann, the master of ceremonies will be John Jackson. Come look toward spring over music and refreshments!

The event takes place at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 10.

First Parish Church of Groton is located at the corner of Main Street and Route 40 in Groton center. Tickets are $10 each, available at the door, with proceeds to benefit First Parish Church.

Heroic heads needed

PEPPERELL — The St. Baldrick’s Foundation has issued a lofty challenge to anyone who wants to help raise money for childhood cancer research: Be a hero for children with cancer by participating in any of the over 300 head-shaving fund-raisers to be held nationwide this year.

Events will be held locally at the Park Street fire station in Pepperell on Wednesday, March 14, from 6 to 9 p.m. This will be the fifth-annual event held in Pepperell. Over the past four years, 48 heads have been shaved, raising more than $13,000.

Local organizers Vinnie and Sandy Messina can be reached at (978) 251-6218 or by e-mail to

Since its inception, St. Baldrick’s has raised more than $20 million for the cause. Worldwide, 160,000 kids are diagnosed with cancer each year and, despite tremendous progress, cancer remains the number one killer disease of children in the U.S. and Canada.

St. Baldrick’s began as a challenge among friends and has grown into the world’s largest fund-raising event for childhood cancer. Volunteers are recruited to have their heads shaved in public, in return for pledges of financial support.

St. Baldrick’s events have been held internationally in Argentina, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, Canada, France, Hong Kong, Iraq, Ireland, Poland and the United Kingdom.

The St. Baldrick’s Foundation adheres to the highest standards established by charity-rating agencies. Learn more about the St. Baldrick’s Foundation by visiting, or calling (888) 899-BALD.

Pancake breakfast

TOWNSEND — Boy Scouts from Troop 81 are hosting a pancake breakfast on Sunday, Feb. 4, at 8:30 a.m. The event will be held at Hawthorne Brook Middle School. Proceeds from the fund-raiser will be used to support Troop events.

The breakfast menu will consist of pancakes, scrambled eggs, a choice of bacon or sausage, and a choice of milk or orange juice for the beverage. The cost is $5 per person and $2.50 for children 12 or under.

Townsend Troop 81 is sponsored by St John’s Church.

NV Chorale trip

JAMESTOWN, Va. — When the invitation arrived to participate in the 400th anniversary of the first permanent settlement in America, members of the Nashoba Valley Chorale (NVC) were thrilled. Jamestown, Va., is pulling out all the stops for a weekend full of events. A historic concert featuring a 400-piece orchestra, representing the 400th anniversary, and a chorus of 1,607 singers, to represent the founding year, tops off a weekend-long celebration. Musicians from all 50 states will join in and NVC is one of three choruses in Massachusetts to participate.

Tim Butler, vice president of the group, estimates the trip will cost over $21,000. The group is seeking tax-deductible donations to help defray the individual price per member. To donate, please mail a check to Nashoba Valley Chorale, P.O. Box 416, Groton, MA 01450. Please indicate Jamestown on the check, or visit the Web site to donate online at

Nashoba Valley Chorale is seeking new members for the spring semester and the May 10-14 trip to Jamestown. The ensemble is a non-audition chorus with members coming from 21 towns in eastern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. NVC meets on Mondays, 7:30-9:30 p.m., at the First Baptist Church in Littleton center, just off Interstate 495. Those interested in joining should visit the Web site at, call (978) 842-4044, or e-mail

Winter Carnival

TOWNSEND — It’s coming again! A Winter Carnival will be held on Saturday, Feb. 10 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pearl Hill State Park, New Fitchburg Road in Townsend, organized by The Friends of Willard Brook. Admission is free.

Enjoy nature walks, cross-country skiing, snowshoe treks, wildlife programs, a winter survival workshop, ice fishing demonstrations and more. Meet Smokey Bear and a search and rescue dog from the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. Enjoy stories around the campfire, and satisfy your appetite with hot soup, cocoa and home-baked goodies for sale with proceeds going to efforts to promote and conserve our own Willard Brook State Forest. Cross-country ski and snowshoe rentals will be available.

For complete information visit or contact Emily Norton at (978) 597-3553 or e-mail

Masonic trip to Mohegan

AYER — The Ayer Masonic Association will sponsor a bus trip to Mohegan Sun on Saturday, Feb. 24. The bus will depart from the Ayer Masonic Center, 11 Sculley Road, Ayer, at 8:30 a.m., then depart from the Ayer Senior Center at 8:45 a.m., arriving at Mohegan Sun at approximately 10:30 a.m. The bus will depart Mohegan Sun at 4 p.m., arrive at the Senior Center at 5:30 p.m. and at the Masonic Center at 5:45 p.m.

Donation are $30 per ticket and each individual will receive a $10 meal certificate and two $5 spins on the “Big Wheel.” For tickets or information call Rick Skoczylas at (978) 772-2663 or Clark Paige at (978) 772-2789.

Valentine’s Dinner Dance

PEPPERELL — On Feb. 10, the Pepperell Woman’s Club will hold their annual Valentine’s Dinner Dance at the VFW Hall on Leighton Street. Cocktails start at 6 p.m. and dinner begins at 7 p.m., with dancing to commence at 8:15 a.m. to the wonderful sounds of “As You Like It.” Purchase tickets in advance only at McNabb General Store or by contacting Rita Donaghy at (978) 433-9848. Tickets should be purchased by Feb. 3 to get an accurate count for the Lions Club, who are the caterers.

During the event will be the annual Woman’s Club Scholarship Raffle, with the winner (and a guest) going to Foxwoods for dinner, a show, an overnight stay, breakfast and $200 in cash.

Good Citizenship Awards

WESTFORD — At the annual DAR Good Citizenship Award ceremony, held on Jan. 28 at The Westford Museum, eight secondary school students were honored by Westford’s Col. John Robinson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Students receiving the esteemed award were:

Ayer High School, Stephen Wright; The Bromfield School, Bryan Patrick Molinaro; Greater Lowell Vocational Technical High School, Danielle Elizabeth Thompson; Groton-Dunstable High School, Maliha Muzaffar Chaudhry; Littleton High School, Tyler J. Dolak; Nashoba Valley Technical High School, Kelly Lambert Armstrong; Tyngsboro High School, Kaitlyn Elizabeth Caroline Long; and Westford Academy, Daniel John Parker.

The significance of the Good Citizenship Pin emphasizes the qualities of good character, dependability, service, leadership and patriotism. Members and family members congratulated the recipients at the reception following the ceremony.

Community Calendar

HARVARD — The Harvard Community Calendar Committee welcomes local photographers, amateur or professional, to submit photos for this year’s calendar. The winner of the contest will have their photo displayed on the calendar cover. Other submissions may be selected for use throughout the calendar.

The 2007-2008 calendar will run from June ’07 through June ’08 and all profits from calendar sales will benefit the Harvard PTA. The committee has opted not to have a theme for the pictures, but would encourage photos that celebrate the beauty, natural or manmade, of Harvard life. Photos of recognizable individuals or groups will not be accepted, nor will copyright-protected material.

Photos should be submitted in an 8×10 dimension and in landscape (horizontal) orientation, as well as on a disk in JPEG format.

Please direct any questions about photo submissions to Kent Boynton at

Should any local businesses wish to advertise in the calendar, space will be sold for one 1.5 by 2.5 inch ad per month for $250 each. For questions relating to advertising please contact Linda Jones at

Calendars will be available for sale in late May.