Tag Archives: incitytimesworcester.org

A long cold winter for many outdoor dogs


The Jett-ster never stays outside alone, chained up … . Winter can kill a dog forced to live outdoors! Please call the City of Worcester animal control officers, who work out of the police department (  (508) 799-8606) or the Worcester Animal Rescue League  – (508) 853-0030 – if you see a “junkyard dog” forced to be outdoors hours at a time this winter or any other dog forced to live outdoors in the freezing cold. They’ll help the dog, remove the dog if necessary.  – R. T.

By Teresa Chagrin, PETA.ORG

It was 20 degrees outside. The tiny gray dog, tethered to a tree, had no shelter and no way to stay warm. Her hair was falling out in clumps because of a severe skin infection, leaving her shivering and on the brink of hypothermia. Thankfully, the little dog, now named Suzy, was rescued after a concerned passerby called PETA’s Emergency Response Team, which mobilized a compassionate local humane officer.

Many other dogs who are forced to face the winter on a chain or in a backyard pen aren’t as lucky.

A sweet pit bull named Daisy, alone in an Arkansas backyard, froze to death one subzero January night because the chain that she was attached to prevented her from reaching shelter. In North Carolina, PETA fieldworkers found three chained pit bulls—Mylie, Buck and Roscoe—dead inside their bare doghouses. They were just skeletons covered with skin and had no body fat to insulate them from the winter cold. Every bone in their bodies was visible.

Dozens of other dogs across the country die similar cold, painful deaths every year because their guardians—if they can even be called that—are ignorant of or indifferent to their needs.

Every dog longs and deserves to live indoors with a loving human “pack,” but dogs who are relegated to the backyard are often deprived of companionship, adequate shelter and other basic needs.

Overturned barrels or plywood lean-tos offer no protection from howling winds and freezing temperatures. Old rugs and blankets, which people sometimes toss to dogs for bedding, freeze after they get wet. A basic dry doghouse stuffed with straw and covered with a flap, while no substitute for a loving home, is a luxury compared to what most chained and penned dogs are given.

Dogs’ fur coats don’t provide adequate protection from the elements—especially when it comes to short-haired, small, young or elderly dogs.

Frostbitten ears, toes and tails, hypothermia and death are daily threats to dogs who are left outdoors in the winter.

Older dogs who have spent winter after bitter winter on the cold, hard ground endure the added misery of aching, arthritic joints.

While their families stay cozy and warm inside heated homes, many dogs who are left outdoors shiver themselves to sleep every night—if they can sleep at all.

The effort to stay warm burns extra calories, so dogs left outside often endure constant hunger or can even starve to death without an increase in calories.

Dogs have died of dehydration in the middle of winter simply because no one noticed that their water bucket had frozen solid.

Even if they survive the winter, chained dogs have little to look forward to. Summer brings sweltering temperatures, flea and tick infestations, flies—who are attracted to the animals’ waste and bite their ears bloody—and the torment of hearing and seeing people outdoors but being unable to run, play or interact with them.

In every season, the aching loneliness and crushing deprivation of solitary confinement remain.

If there are chained or penned dogs in your neighborhood, don’t let them suffer through another long, cold, lonely winter. Call the authorities if the dogs have no food, water or shelter or if their life appears to be in danger. Befriend their guardian, and offer to take them for walks. Take treats, food and toys along on your visits. Consider allowing them to sleep in your home on especially cold nights. Above all, urge their guardian to let them live indoors with the rest of the family—so that they will not only survive the winter but also have a life worth living.

This article was written by Teresa Chagrin, an animal care and control specialist in PETA’s Cruelty Investigations Department.

Please visit and support the beautiful horses …


Drove  down to Blue Star in Palmer today to see and touch the magnificent working horses at this special working horse sanctuary. The horses there sooth my soul … . Each horse (Blue Star has 32) so intelligent and sensitive, yet mysterious (to me). … Did you know horses’ lips are so sensitive they can pick up a single grain in a sandbox filled with sand? They get to know you when you offer them your hand to smell. They take in your scent … . Then they remember you forever!  They get jealous if their pals are getting all the attention and throw their massive heads up and shake them at you to protest. Stroking the neck of an almost 2,000 lb animal – one so beautiful and powerful! –  feels otherworldly.

Take the kids this school vacation to the country, to Blue Star … . Be mesmerized …

They are located at 3090 Palmer St., Palmer. Their phone number: (413) 289-9787

Here are some photos I took this afternoon.     – Rosalie Tirella



















Calling all farmers, people who don’t want inner-city farmers markets gentrified, folks who want to bring fresh local foods to city schools/low-income families!

It’s the POLLINATE CONFERENCE January 13  at Worcester State University!

Time is running out …

Registration closes on January 7th!

Reserve your spot today.

Join more 300 other enthusiastic farm to cafeteria advocates from the preschool, K-12, and college sectors for a full day of workshops, networking, cooking demonstrations, and fun. We will have over 20 different workshops including:

Farm to School Policy and Advocacy

Farm to School Curriculum Connections

Waste Reduction, Composting Organics, and School Gardens
Funding Farm to School Programs
On Campus Farming
Farm to Preschool 101
Farm Based Education Initiatives – Urban and Rural Farm Field Trips
Sea to School: Incorporating Local Seafood in School Meals

The conference will also include Farm to Cafeteria Regional Networking Sessions so that you can connect with others in your community who are involved in farm to cafeteria activities.

Learn from their best practices, share your own tips, and move forward together!

We will be holding a concurrent Buyer Tradeshow and Networking Session for Farmers and Distributors. This will be a great opportunity to make direct connections with farmers from your region and discuss local sourcing with distributors.


Registration closes on January 7th and is filling up quickly as we have a limit of 350 attendees. Discounts are available for students and conference presenters. Please contact us for more information.

Conference Sponsorship Opportunities

Opportunities still exist for conference sponsorship. This conference is made possible by generous support from businesses and organizations that share the values of the farm to cafeteria movement. We expect the conference to attract over 300 individuals from a variety of fields including school and college dining services, farmers, non-profit organization staff, state agency representatives, legislators, school educators and administrators.

We have a number of different conference sponsorship opportunities. If you are interested in being a sponsor, please contact us.

For more information and to register, CLICK HERE!

We got a cute note from the WPL …

… which reminded me to remind you …


At the Worcester Public Library

Salem Square

TOMORROW – Tuesday, December 30


Two shows: 3 p.m. – 4 p.m.

and 6 p.m. – 7 p.m.

Tanglewood Marionettes Present:

Hansel & Gretel

Set in the mid-nineteenth century, the story is based on the classic fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm and features melodies from the Humperdinck Opera.

As the tale unfolds, Hansel and Gretel must call upon their inner reserves and learn new methods to overcome the challenges they encounter while lost in the woods.

FREE tickets are required, limited and available at the Children’s Room Desk.

Recommended for ages 5 to 12 years.

Please contact the library’s Children’s Room at 508-799-1671.



Jett looking bored. That’ll change! In a bit, we’ll be out driving looking at dogs, maybe even horses!

– R.T.

Worcester’s First Night – be here!

By Edith Morgan

Hello, 2015!

Every year at this time, for just $10, Worcesterites of all ages have a chance to get a taste of talent young and old, and to view some of the many great buildings and churches scattered around the center of our city.

I am talking about Worcester First Night, which offers unlimited access to so many Worcester arts venues on January 31 every year. And it goes on regardless of weather – there is never a rain date.

This year there are numerous innovations: in response to popular comments, there will be one great fireworks display, instead of the two shorter  ones – and they will be able to be seen at 10:15 from several of Worcester’s many hills.

And I can hardly wait to ride one of the two trolleys that will take revelers to various Worcester sites open that evening!

I am always amazed, and dismayed, that so many residents have not been to our fair city’s Tuckerman Hall or the Ecotarium, or all the other fascinating venues gathered about the area. But with the First Night button displayed somewhere on your person, you can get into all these places on this night, enjoy a 45-minute program of dance, music, poetry … get a taste of the many performing arts in Worcester year round, and maybe even run into friends and neighbors enjoying it all, too!

Over the years I have accumulated a collection of Worcester First Night buttons – and the sweatshirts emblazoned with that year’s logo. These days I do not volunteer anymore, but for a number of years I did. There is much need for volunteers, as this great spectacle is driven largely by volunteers, under the direction of Howard McGinn.  Usually only two hours are required, and then you are free to partake of all the wonderful programs, so different, for every taste.

I would hope that all Worcester residents and people from neighboring towns too would come and see what we have to offer. In my Lincoln/Burncoat neighborhood, school children, groups from Joy of Music and others are involved, and should be supported.

So, come one and all! Enjoy and support our city!

Happy New Year and joy in 2015!

Talking on the phone with a gal pal and decided … This week to show you some fashion finds at Worcester thrift shops …

… stuff as wonderful as Carrie’s powder puff pink tutu???? … I adored SEX AND THE CITY and leading lady Carrie! Carrie was totally herself: un-phony, lean bod, big nose, good columnist, and a bit self-sabotaging with her BIG obsession!

Without Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte, we wouldn’t have Lena D.’s Hannah, Shosh and the rest of the GIRLS. … GIRLS, tied with MAD MEN, for my fave TV show! – R.T.

Looking to buy something sparkly and pretty for New Year’s Eve? Then shop at Abby’s House Thrift Store for your sparkly, pretty things!


I got these sparkly necklaces my Santa is modeling at the Salvation Army (on Cambridge Street) years ago!


Got this great beaded clutch awhile back at another thrift shop run by a Worcester nonprofit human service agency.

I shop Goodwill (on Park Ave.) for my goodies: purses, dresses, baubles and trinkets! … . They have some real treasures. You just have to look for them, be willing to spend some time hunting for the pretty, funky stuff. Which is FUN!

Most “vintage” shops scour places like Goodwill, Abby’s House thrift shop, or the Salvation Army to find cool clothing, furniture, accessories and stuff. Then they MARK IT WAY UP $$$ for you – their customers.

Why not go straight to the source and find the great jewelry, skirts, funky stuff, etc for $1, $2, $3, $5  without a middle person who is gonna make you pay a lot more money for the goods?  Plus, if you shop at these thrift shops, places like ABBY’S HOUSE THRIFT STORE (see below), your money goes to great nonprofits that employ hundreds of local folks and work to make our community – especially vulnerable families and individuals – healthy and strong.

So … head out to where our Parlee Jones works – ABBY’S HOUSE! – and shop at their store!

52 High St., Worcester

By shopping at Abby’s House THRIFT SHOP (52 High St., across the street from St. Paul’s Cathedral) you support the shelter and the homeless women for whom it spells HOME.

Lots of greats buys! Lots of items Diamonds in the Rough!

The Abby’s House Thrift Shop

All of the profits from sales at the Thrift Shop fund their emergency women’s shelter.


Monday through Thursday: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Fridays: 10:00 am – 2:00 pm

Saturdays: 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

For more information, call (508) 756-5486, extension 12.

A special holiday request from Abby’s: At times we are in need of furniture in good condition that may be used to set up an apartment, such as small kitchen sets or desk sets. If you would like to make a furniture donation, please call ahead.

CLICK HERE to visit the Abby’s House website to learn more!

Holiday sweeties!


“The Mayor of Green Island,” the lovely and talented Lorraine Laurie!



Mom and her little boy, at Webster Square.  They’d just finished doing some Christmas shopping at the Dollar Store and were hurrying to the bus stop. Little guy cranky cuz he was out all day … . Saw my sweet late mother and myself, many Christmases ago, in these two sweeties!


SWNC Executive Director Ron Charette (right) and his brother hugging away this past Tuesday at the South Worcester Neighborhood Center holiday extravaganza!


A sparkly Worcester City Hall and Common! Sweet!!!!

And, finally, from me to you: SWEET-HEART OF THE RODEO album in its entirety – the Gram Parsons version! I love Gram! Enjoy!

– Rosalie Tirella