Category Archives: Uncategorized

Stylish vegan sofas at Target …

… vegan sofas mean faux leather, no animals harmed … ETHICAL DECOR! Beautiful,  too!



Vegan shoes? Check.

Vegan purse? Check.

Vegan couch? Who’da thought?

If you’re in the market to give your living room a makeover (or you’re like me and are always in the mood to window shop), check out some of the kind and comfy sofas below before you head to the store.

For the modern vegan, check out this sleek black faux-leather couch, available from Sofas NYC.

Black Faux Leather Modern Convertible Sofa Bed With Metal Legs, $519.00

If the look of leather ain’t your thang, make your living room bold and beautifulwith a patterned print like this chaise settee from Target.

Target Athens Chaise Settee-Chocolate, $412.49

CLICK HERE to read more!

CLICK on blue sofa descriptions to see more of the store’s products/order!

Worcester FOOD HUB meeting today at Hanover Theater! FREE! Please attend! Fight for food justice! Fight for economic development in Woo! ALSO: ICT Food Hub story by Congressman Jim McGovern


Food hubs grow our local economy, especially immigrant and first-generation endeavors, and they bring produce at affordable prices to inner-city kitchens! 


Once again, from REC …

Building A Sustainable Worcester: Taking Regional Food Hub from Vision to Reality




5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

We invite you to attend a free presentation TODAY,  Thursday, February 19, co-hosted by the Regional Environmental Council, the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Hanover Theater for the Performing Arts

Come learn more about the role food hubs can play in promoting Food Justice while fostering economic development.

FREE tickets can be reserved by calling the theater box office at 877-571-7469 or register online.

We look forward to seeing you there!

The Regional Environmental Council of Central Massachusetts [aka REC] has received a planning grant from the Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts to explore the feasibility of establishing a Worcester Regional Food Hub in partnership with the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Food hubs are broadly defined as facilities that manage the aggregation, storage, processing, distribution or marketing of locally and regionally produced food.

We are thrilled to explore opportunities with diverse community stakeholders to dramatically increase access to healthy, affordable, local food in Worcester, while helping local farmers access new markets.

FOOD HUB Advisory Committee members include:

Central MA Regional Planning Commission

Central MA Workforce Investment Board

City of Worcester Division of Public Health

Clark University, Community Development & Planning Program

Harvard University Graduate School of Design, Smart Cities & Wellness Project

Lettuce Be Local

Northeast Organic Farming Association

Office of Congressman James P. McGovern

UMass Memorial Medical Center

UMass-Amherst Stockbridge School of Agricultural Extension

Worcester County Food Bank

Worcester Food & Active Living Policy Council

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Sustainable Food Systems Project Center

Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce

REC – Regional Environmental Council

P.O Box 255

Worcester, MA 01613

To learn more visit:


InCity Times is passionate about FOOD HUBS! Here’s Congressman Jim McGovern’s InCity Times kick-ass Food Hub cover story! He wrote it for us in 2013.     – R. Tirella


By Congressman Jim McGovern

What if I told you that within a quick drive of Worcester lies an incredible agriculture community you have never seen, touched, or tasted?

In 2010, there were nearly 8,000 farms in Massachusetts, according to the United States Census—the highest number in the state dating back to at least 1978. And that doesn’t count hundreds of additional community and personal operations that fall below the size threshold.

That’s thousands of farmers, right in our backyard. It’s a testament to the long endurance of some family farms, as well as a sign of the returning, growing impact of farms on our local economy and society.

It’s a move that parallels the so-called “locavore movement” towards locally-grown food over the past decades; a demand that has grown as we have all learned about the economic and health benefits to buying and eating local.

Yet, despite the breadth and increasing number of farms in Massachusetts, in our urban centers such as Worcester, there remains a huge physical and emotional disconnect between the producers (the farmers) and the consumers (us).

Despite the presence of some truly admirable local farmers markets, there is a gap in our food infrastructure that prevents food produced in the state from getting to the consumers who want and would benefit from it the most.

As I’ve travelled around the 2nd Congressional District, visiting farms across Central and Western Massachusetts, the most oft-cited challenge relayed to me by small to mid-sized farmers and producers is a lack of processing, packing, and storage space to get their products ready to sell and ship.

It leaves us with a major question: What if we could drastically improve the economic output of local farmers, allowing them to grow their businesses, while simultaneously making good, fresh, healthy, locally grown products more available to consumers who want them in cities like Worcester? It’s clear that if we could bridge that gap, there would be a huge impact on our local, regional, and state economies, as well as a huge societal benefit.

I believe that Worcester can be the epicenter of that impact by being the home of an innovative concept known as a “food hub.”

The word “Food Hub” can encompass a variety of operations, both in terms of size and scale, but the National Food Hub Collaboration defines regional food hubs as “a business or organization that actively manages the aggregation, distribution, and marketing of source-identified food products primarily from local and regional producers to strengthen their ability to satisfy wholesale, retail, and institutional demand.”

In essence, food hubs allow small and midsized farms reach markets and consumers they’ve never had access to. They provide a central collection point for products from a variety of farms; they provide space and equipment for processing, packing, and storage. And they provide an economy of scale, allowing smaller local farms to pool their products and sell to larger consumers, such as grocery chains.

In many ways, food hubs are a return to the traditional economic values that made Massachusetts and New England so strong. Food hubs allow for a stronger local food economy based on closer relationships between farmers and consumers. They allow institutional buyers, such as hospitals, a greater opportunity to provide the healthy, local food they want to, but can’t always access.

Though food hubs are relatively new, there is a demonstrable positive economic, social, and environmental impact where they are located. Based on the 2011 National Food Hub Collaboration Survey, food hubs gross nearly $1 million in annual sales on average, with many reporting double and triple-digit annual sales growth.

That same survey reported that, although the majority of food hubs have been in operation for five years or less, there is a clear and immediate impact on job opportunities. For example, the Local Food Hub in Virginia, which opened in 2009, had already created 15 paid jobs at its distribution and farm operations. And that says nothing for the spin-off job growth at the farms that utilize the hub. Green B.E.A.N Delivery, a food delivery business that serves Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky, estimates that since 2007, the company has invested more than $2 million in local food economies and helped create more than 100 jobs in the Midwest.

I look at those stunning numbers, combined with the growing demand for local food, and it’s clear that a regional food hub belongs here in our city. This is an idea I am passionate about, and one that I plan on continuing to talk about with local, state, and national partners in the coming year.

Food hubs must be a critical piece of how we think about our broader economic development strategy in Massachusetts, and I believe that Worcester is the right location. We have strong local leadership on local food issues, through groups such as REC, and we have a geographic location that makes us an enviable location for any statewide distribution network.

The question for me isn’t whether we’ll see a food hub built somewhere in Central Massachusetts—it’s when and where. We’re a state with agriculture resources beyond what many of us have traditionally realized, and a consumer base chomping at the bit to take advantage of those resources. If we can only build the bridges, we’ll be healthier food wise, and economy wise

FREE! Movie night and Knitting Circle at WPL

Worcester Public Library

3 Salem Square


5:30 PM – 8:30 PM

Black Culture Movie Night: A Soldier’s Story

A Soldier’s Story starring Denzel Washington, Adolph Caesar, Howard Rollins, Jr.

Tensions flare in this gripping film about a murder on a black army base near the end of World War II. Captain Davenport (Howard E. Rollins, Jr.), a proud black Army attorney, is sent to Fort Neal, Louisiana, to investigate the ruthless shooting death of Sergeant Waters (Adolph Caesar). Through interviews with Sarge’s men, Davenport learns the truth.

Location: Saxe Room

TOMORROW! Thursday, Feb. 19

2:30 PM – 4 PM

Knitting Circle

Knit along with us as we work on a themed project, or feel free to bring something you’re working on already!

February’s Theme: Hats/Headbands.

Knitters of all skill levels and other needle-craft enthusiasts are welcome to join us.

Bring your own supplies.

If you would like to learn how to knit please bring size 7 or 8 straight knitting needles and a skein of worsted weight yarn.

Group meets on the first floor at the Food for Thought Library Cafe.

Supplies needed:

Easy headband: 1 skein worsted weight yarn, size 8 straight needles, and yarn needle

Easy hat: 1 skein worsted weight yarn, size 8 straight needles, and yarn needle
Intermediate hat: 16 inch circular needles (size 10), set of size 10 double pointed needles, 1 stitch marker, and worsted weight yarn

Love these last-minute Valentine’s Day gifts from AlBums!


Justin just sent me this photo of a VINTAGE JUKEBOX he is selling! WOW! What an AMAZING Valentine’s Day gift, Justin!!!!! 

I took these pics a few minutes ago. To buy any of this cool stuff (including the jukebox) or to see more cool stuff, check out Albumsma on eBay.

–  R. Tirella







Governor Charlie Baker’s e-mail to state employees (full text)

Public information! I kinda like the guy! – R. T.


Good afternoon –

It’s been just about 30 days since the Baker / Polito team went to work with you on behalf of the people of this great state. Suffice it to say it’s been an eventful few weeks. Let me start by thanking the folks who’ve been involved in managing the Commonwealth’s recent record-breaking snowfall. While it hasn’t been perfect – and at times, it’s been deeply frustrating for many of us (including me) – Karyn and I have been immensely impressed by the creativity, teamwork, and sense of mission many of you brought to the public safety, snow removal and disposal, local communications, debris removal, transportation and power restoration issues laid on us all by the past couple of weeks of weather. While a weather event like this may stress our resources, it also provides an opportunity to demonstrate to our constituents the critical importance of the difficult work their state government does every day. And in this instance, we mostly put our best foot forward.

I’m also assuming we’ll have plenty of opportunities to get together around these issues again in the coming months. Thank-you Mother Nature.

We’ve also filed a proposal with the state legislature to deal with the $768 MM Fiscal Year 2015 deficit we inherited. Some of our proposals can be implemented on our own, and others require legislative approval. That said, we believe they represent the right combination of revenue moves and spending reductions, and will put the Commonwealth on much better financial footing as we begin to plan for FY 2016. If the legislature enacts our proposals, FY 2015 state spending will be 7.7% higher than it was in FY 2014. That kind of year over year increase in spending will be impossible to sustain going forward, even in a relatively healthy economy. To reduce the impact on the people we serve, many of these spending reductions focus on administrative expenses. With that in mind, we’ve chosen to lead by example and have reduced the Governor’s office budget by 10 percent.

We’ve also sworn in a new Cabinet, and will continue to build out our leadership team in the coming months. While our team represents a variety of points of view, to a person, they bring solid subject matter expertise, management experience, and a big dose of professional experiences in both the public and private sectors to their chosen tasks. I want to thank all of them for saying “yes” when Karyn and I asked them to join the team.

We will have many challenges in the weeks, months and years ahead. I know this because I’ve been here before. For those of you who are too young to remember, I spent 8 years serving the Cabinets of Governors Bill Weld and Paul Cellucci in the 1990s, and learned, among other things, that every day presented its own unique set of challenges. But I also learned that with those challenges came enormous opportunity – to think differently about how to get something done, or to pursue a better, smarter, more cost effective way to provide a service. I also learned that getting something right – really right – could make a big difference to a ton of people, which in many respects, drives my interest in and commitment to public service.

We have a lot of work to do. Some of it won’t be pretty – at least in the short term. But know this, with this team, you have a leadership group that is open to change, wants to do better, and believes that success is never final. There is always a better way.

We all look forward to working with you all to find that better way.

Charlie Baker

Worcester Common Ground CDC fundraiser!

You’re invited!

Worcester Common Ground’s Video Release Party & Fundraiser!

Please join us in celebrating the release of Worcester Common Ground’s community-building video “Common Ground” during our first official Fundraiser!

This event with FREE ADMISSION will also include impact stories from our residents, a silent auction, raffle, and a mix of delicious hors d’oeuvres catered by Struck.

Help us to keep building our vibrant community!

When: SATURDAY, February 21

4 pm – 6 pm

Where: Central Branch YMCA
766 Main St.

We ask that attendees bring one roll of yellow city trash bags if they are able. Further instructions will be provided at the event!

At the Worcester Public Library! KNITTING CIRCLE!


Worcester Public Library
3 Salem Square

This Thursday –  Feb 5

2:30 pm – 4 pm

Knit along with us as we work on a themed project, or feel free to bring something you’re working on already!

February’s Theme: Hats/Headbands.

Knitters of all skill levels and other needle-craft enthusiasts are welcome to join us!

Bring your own supplies.

If you would like to learn how to knit please bring size 7 or 8 straight knitting needles and a skein of worsted weight yarn.

We meet on the first floor of the library, at the Food for Thought Cafe.

Supplies needed:

Easy headband: 1 skein worsted weight yarn, size 8 straight needles, and yarn needle

Easy hat: 1 skein worsted weight yarn, size 8 straight needles, and yarn needle

Intermediate hat: 16 inch circular needles (size 10), set of size 10 double pointed needles, 1 stitch marker, and worsted weight yarn

We don’t give a fig about football …

… so we’ll be taking a road trip to eat a yummy late lunch. But we do give a fig about animal rights. … If you’re into Tim Brady and amigos and are gonna throw a party, why not forgo the meat and try some healthy veggie eats, courtesy of PETA.ORG?

Before we get to the snacks … here are some NFL players who love and stand up for animals!

From PETA:

We’re this close to the Super Bowl, and football is on everyone’s minds. So we thought we’d satiate our yard-line yearnings with a look at some of the super studs who are scoring one for animals. PETA’s brand-new compilation video features gridiron guys who show no mercy to their opponents or to animal abusers.

Take it from some of the toughest guys around: Real men are kind to animals.




CLICK HERE to see all the recipes!

 Perfect Vegan Pizza

Vegan Fried Chicken Sandwiches

The WPD and WFD at Worcester NAACP meeting this Thursday!

The Worcester NAACP’s membership/community meeting has been rescheduled for this Thursday, February 6 at 6:30 pm.

In the upstairs Board Room of the YWCA, Salem Square.

Officer Miguel Lopez, Affirmative Action Officer and Young Program Director for the Worcester Police Department, and Harold Rodriguez from the Worcester Fire Department will be sharing information regarding the upcoming civil service examination.

If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about a career in law enforcement or fire safety, please come to the meeting and get the information you need to make the first step.

Important deadlines to remember are:

Application Deadline:  March 13, 2015

Examination Date:  April 25, 2015

Please join us, meet the 2015 leadership team of the Worcester NAACP, and let us know what issues we should be addressing in Worcester.

So many easy, simple ways to live cruelty-free!

None of these lovely soaps were tested on white bunnies crammed into cages in “labs”! A few of these companies have stores in the Auburn Mall and other malls in the area, making animal-rights very mainstream!   From PETA.ORG.        – R.T. 

LUSH soaps are all handmade with fresh, organic fruits and veggies and have invigorating scents such as ginger, sea vegetable, and even porridge. Vegan products are clearly labeled on the company’s website, too, so shopping is a breeze. The soaps are available in LUSH shops and online. Find a store.

2. Kiss My Face
Classic and long-lasting, Kiss My Face soap is the first natural soap I used when I started buying only cruelty-free products. There are several nourishing olive formulas, including chamomile, lavender, green tea, and more. Find a store.

CLICK HERE to read entire article! 


Cute, tasty and cruelty-free!

Top 5 Vegan Super Bowl Recipes (Videos)

CLICK HERE to watch these perky cooking videos!