hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

April 17, 2014

The Lamp Post

The Haverhill Gazette

---- — If you wake up at an odd hour and think you’re imagining bright flashing lights, don’t worry.

It might just be the city’s street sweeper doing its springtime thing. The vehicle has been spotted recently at all hours on various main streets and side roads.

For the last few years, the street sweeper has combed the inner city to pick up sand on the side of roads, left there from the city’s efforts to battle winter storms.

City loses a friend

The Lamplighter was saddened to hear about the death of Thomas Brennan Jr., a former Haverhill school counselor who worked in the Haverhill system in the late 1970s.

He left here for several jobs in New Hampshire, where he eventually worked as a high-ranking school superintendent. Brennan, who is remembered by many in Haverhill, died last week after a long illness.

Eye-catching birds

Passersby on Route 110 near Kenoza Lake couldn’t help but notice an unusual sight on a nearby marsh one day last week.

Two beautiful swans were swimming on the marsh’s high-than-usual water, made that way by the wet spring.

The scene made the Lamplighter remember an incident several years ago involving swans on the Merrimack River,not far from the Methuen line. Someone shot the birds, in violation of conservation laws. But memory fades about whether the culprits were ever caught.

Signs of spring — road style

We’re seeing plenty of signs of spring these days — plants blossoming, birds returning from the south — but here’s a different sign that the weather has turned for the better.

Several antique cars have been spotted on city streets lately. They are the kind you never see during the winter, their owners not risking exposing them to the rough weather and salt on the roads.

And speaking of local roads ...

The city has done a decent job of repairing potholes caused by the difficult winter, and the community is getting a welcome financial boost to help with the repairs.

The state is giving Haverhill more than $200,000 to pay for repairing streets marred by the holes.

On time — finally

For weeks, the big clock outside the public library was an hour slow, never having been changed this spring.

But last week, the clock’s hands were finally moved to show the correct time.

It was troubling to drive past the library day after day and see the wrong time. Wonder what took so long to make the change?

Touching gold

Kayla Harrison, America’s first gold medalist in judo (winning in London is 2012) was guest speaker at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Haverhill’s annual Banquet of Champions, held April 8 at Michael’s Function Hall.

Harrison gave an inspirational talk to a crowd of nearly 400 children and adults. At one point, she got the kids to join her in chanting “a goal set is a goal met.” Kids got to touch her gold medal, which Harrison passed around during dinner.

That’s more like it

All that debris dotting the side of the highway is becoming a thing of the past — thankfully.

The Lamplighter noted last week it was time to give I-495 a good spring cleaning and pick up trash that had been hiding under the now-melted snow.

Apparently, someone was listening.

The other day, more than a dozen full yellow plastic trash bags lined the shoulder of the highway near the Main Street exit. It looked as if the sheriff’s department brought low-security jail inmates there to clean, which is a regular sight during the spring and summer.