hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

May 16, 2013

The Lamp Post

The Haverhill Gazette

---- — :It was worth the wait — and hassle: The stretch of Interstate 495 north through Haverhill that the state has been working on for weeks is done now, paved over and smooth. The job was a nuisance for nighttime drivers, who often were delayed as they were forced into a single lane while workers did the job. But now drivers can be thankful for the smooth commute through the area.

What a view: If you’ve driven on Water Street lately, you’ve likely noticed the clearer view of the Merrimack River. City workers have been removing brush and thinning out tree branches on the stretch of road between the Buttonwoods Museum and Lincoln Avenue near Trinity Stadium. The effort has paid off, with a view of the waterway that is the best passersby have enjoyed in a long time.

Changing of the guard: First the school changed its name. Now it has a new leader. Northpoint Bible College, formerly known as Zion Bible College, has a new president. The college inaugurated its eighth president, Dr. J. David Arnett, this month. Outgoing president Dr. Charles Crabtree and his wife, the Rev. Ramona Crabtree, were honored at a farewell banquet last week. Crabtree’s five years of service included moving the school from Barrington, R.I., to Haverhill, changing the college’s name, expanding its programs and bringing significant growth in enrollment.

Call her Haverhill’s Pied Piper: If Elaine Barker isn’t Haverhill’s biggest cheerleader, the Lamplighter doesn’t know who is. Barker, leader of Haverhill’s Brightside volunteer organization, is always sending out emails encouraging people to attend civic events. Her latest mass invite involved rallying people to attend the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce’s annual KidsFEST celebration May 5. The event was a success, with thousands of people stopping downtown for entertainment, festival food, and children’s games and activities.

A necessary warning: The Lamplighter is certain the local Lions Club made the right decision by issuing a warning in a recent press release about comedian Bucky Lewis’ plans to perform at the club’s comedy night. The release warned potential attendees that Lewis’ act contains adult material. Lewis’ humor is indeed racy, as anyone who has attended his past local performances can attest.

Time to cycle: Mayor James Fiorentini is making his annual pitch for residents to ride their bikes to work to be kind to their bodies and the environment. The mayor rode his bike to work recently as part of the Bay State Bike Week Initiative. He and Haverhill resident Jeff Russell rode their bikes to City Hall to kick off the event.

Speaking of the mayor: Fiorentini recently celebrated Polish Constitution Day at City Hall. A proclamation was read and the Polish Flag was raised. Refreshments were served. The event continued the mayor’s tradition of honoring ethnic groups by inviting locals to his office for celebrations.

India bound: Ligia Domenech, a professor at Northern Essex Community College, has been chosen to spend elected to spend a month in India. The visit will be paid for by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. The professor will participate in a summer program titled “India’s Past and the Making of the Present.’’