It looks like veteran groups are getting a jump on Memorial Day weekend.
When visiting St. James Cemetery last weekend, the Lamplighter noticed the small American flags that are placed annually on the graves of all those who served in the military were there a week early — like a red, white and blue blanket across the landscape.
Speaking of annual rites of passage, look to the Farmers Market to return to the city early next month. Organizers are planning the opening for sometime in the first or second week of June. Like last year, the market will be on land between the upper level of the Merrimack Street parking deck and police station.
Haverhill's Victor Emanuel Lodge, Sons of Italy, the only remaining Sons of Italy drum and bugle corps in America, held its annual memorial service on Sunday at All Saints Church. About 50 colorfully dressed marchers, including musicians playing drums, cymbals and various sized bugles, as well as a color guard and banner holders, began their musical march at the lodge on Washington Street. Near the end of the 11 a.m. Mass, a drum roll preceded buglers who played taps in memory of deceased lodge members. Afterwards, the corps marched back to lodge, entertaining onlookers the entire way. The group was lead by its drum major, Haverhill police officer Stephen Iannalfo.
Anyone who drove through downtown on Monday probably encountered some kind of a delay. It seemed like road construction work was taking place everywhere. National Grid workers were on the east side of Main Street in front of Central Plaza, construction workers were digging a hole in front of 109 Washington St. near Columbus Park, while most of South Main Street is still undergoing a massive road reconstruction project paid for by the state.
Former City Councilor Krystine Hetel is being named president of the Massachusetts Rental Housing Association. She previously served as secretary and vice president, and for the last few months has served as acting president at the request of outgoing MRHA president Mark Leger. Hetel is a member of the Haverhill Landlord's Guild.