November 20th, 2011
Dressed in matching pajamas, two-year-old Isabella Paulson and her aunt Amanda DelPonte get ready for the Polar Express to depart the Woonsocket Depot yesterday for the 90-minute excursion and reading of Chris Van Allsburg's classic "The Polar Express," presented by the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council. The local depot has been dubbed the Polar Express Train Station this holiday season, with trips coming up today, Nov. 20, and on Dec. 2, 3, 4, 11, 16, 17and18. The train leaves at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m on Fridays, and at 10:45 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.
WOONSOCKET â€“ The budget war between the school department and the city administration will continue for at least another legal skirmish, following a 3-2 vote of the outgoing committee Wednesday night.
The school committee had school department attorney Richard Ackerman lodge an appeal of the city's move to cut school spending last year even though it subsequently cut its $62 million budget to the $59 million figure. Mayor Leo T. Fontaine and the city council maintained it was the only funding available for schools.
Ponaganset and Burrillville could both use a win on Thursday to finish their seasons with a good taste in their mouths.
Each squad struggled this season. Ponaganset missed the playoffs with a 3-4 record in Division II-B while Burrillville suffered through a 1-7 season in Division III.
Burrillville won this holiday game 21-0 last year on its home field. The Broncos lead the series, 14-11.
WOONSOCKET â€“ Before it can gain access to capital thatâ€™s needed to upgrade the wastewater treatment plant, the city must renegotiate antiquated pacts with neighboring communities that also use the facility, including two in Massachusetts, officials say.
The City Council recently gave Mayor Leo T. Fontaine the go-ahead to borrow the first $26 million for plant upgrades whose costs could top out at $40 million.
WOONSOCKET â€“ The rise of storefront churches in retail zones once dominated by the greengrocer and tailor isnâ€™t necessarily a trend greeted with the utmost reverence in a city struggling to save its traditional downtown for small business.
But the Rev. Al Berja of His Presence Church International was preaching to the choir when he asked the Zoning Board of Review for permission to put his church in an old cotton mill.
So far as anyone can tell, itâ€™s a first for Woonsocket â€“ and the Zoning Board likes it.
WOONSOCKET â€” It has been said more than a few times that success in high school sports comes in cycles. Talented players sometimes come in cohesive groups of classmates who win games from middle school on up through high school. And when they graduate, sometimes the cupboard is empty.
That could be the story of Woonsocket Highâ€™s football program, which won the last two Division II Super Bowls before falling back to earth this season, finishing 1-6 in league action.
Robert J. Hebert
PUTNAM- Robert J. Hebert, 79, of Killingly Ave, Putnam, died Thursday, November 17, 2011 at UMASS Memorial Medical Center in Worcester after a brief illness.
He was born on April 21, 1932 in Burrillville, RI, to the late Leo and Viola (Rabitaille) Hebert.
WOONSOCKET- Sophie Rembijas of Mapleville, RI passed away on Thursday, November 17, 2011 at Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, RI. She was the daughter of the late Stephen and Katherine (Wojick) Polacek.
Sophie was a modest, caring and family oriented individual. She was a hard worker who enjoyed life. Sophie enjoyed reading, cooking, traveling and casinos
Sophie is survived by her son, Timothy Rembijas of New York, NY, as well as many nieces and nephews.
PROVIDENCE â€” The General Assembly culminated an historic special fall session by overwhelmingly approving a radical overhaul of the public employee's pension system designed to save the state hundreds of millions of dollars over time and preserve the integrity of the pension funds going forward.
WOONSOCKET â€” Mount St. Charles Academy will be kicking off 2012 in style -- with a non-league showdown against a formidable Central Mass. foe at Fenway Park.
Mount coach Dave Belisle reported on Thursday that the four-time defending champions will face off with powerhouse Cathedral High of Springfield, Mass. on Monday, Jan. 2 in the 7:30 p.m. nightcap of a tripleheader at the home of the Boston Red Sox.
An added treat to the game is that the proceeds from it will benefit the victims of the tornado that struck Springfield on June 1.