:Adding to his success: Longtime Haverhill resident Andre Dubus has another feather in his cap. Dubus, a professor at UMass Lowell, arranged a recent successful event with horror writer Stephen King to benefit the college. More than 3,000 people packed the Tsongas Arena to listen to King. The event raised $100,000 for the school. Dubus, who now lives in Newbury, is the best-selling author of the novel “House of Sand and Fog’’ and “Townie,’’ a memoir about his years growing up in Haverhill.
On the way out: The city is losing another Catholic priest. The Rev. Michael Harvey is leaving All Saints Church for St. Patrick’s Parish in Stoneham. Harvey has been at All Saints for about four years, and will leave in the first week of January. There is no guarantee he will be replaced, according to church officials.
Packing the boulevard: Those new diagonal parking spaces on Bailey Boulevard are really growing in popularity — and why not? The spaces are just a block north of downtown and are free, while drivers must pay to park in spaces in the heart of the inner city. The Lamplighter parked on the boulevard the other day and noticed only a few of the spaces were empty. Apparently, drivers have lost their fears of backing into the spaces — a requirement of using them.
Pull right in: Speaking of parking areas growing in popularity, the new parking garage next to the downtown train station is getting more and more use. The Lamplighter noticed it was especially packed the night of the Christmas Stroll, when an estimated 12,000 visited the downtown for the annual holiday celebration. It didn’t hurt that the cost of parking in the garage was cut to $1 that night.
Proud of his hometown — and showing it: Matt Noyes did a great job as emcee at the downtown Christmas Stroll, using his booming voice to keep the attention of the massive audience during the introduction of Santa and the tree lighting ceremony. Noyes lives in Haverhill and is a TV meteorologist with New England Cable News. Organizers of the stroll said he is always willing to help at events that benefit Haverhill.
Another local makes city proud: Attorney Jonathan Goldfield of Haverhill was featured in a recent Gazette front-page story detailing his trip to New York to help victims of Superstorm Sandy. But leaders of Haverhill’s Brightside organization point out he also graciously helps right here at home. He has been the legal adviser for Brightside for the last two years.
Health comes first: At the City Hall Cafe, a training ground for students in Haverhill High’s Learning for Life vocational education program, sanitation is a prime concern. Recently, the Lamplighter noticed that a student preparing a grilled cheese sandwich was wearing plastic gloves. When the Lamplighter commended the student, program coordinator John Butler said it’s important to teach students proper sanitation when serving the public. Plus, he said, “What other restaurant has a health board right next door?” The city health office is just around the corner from the student-run cafe, which serves breakfast and lunch to the public and city workers.
Tech grad takes spotlight: Navy Airman Michael Gertz, a 2008 graduate of Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School, was among the nearly 12,000 past and current crew members, family and friends who attended the recent inactivation of aircraft carrier USS Enterprise. Enterprise, the world’s first nuclear powered aircraft carrier, recently completed its 25th and final deployment and returned to its home port of Naval Station Norfolk for an inactivation ceremony Dec. 1, the last official public event for the ship. Gertz joined the Navy in November 2008. He is the son of Cynthia and Stephen Gertz of Groveland.