Crossroads News banner
In This Issue
Chamber Hours Update
Welcome New Members!
Save the Date: GOLF CLASSIC
May Brimfield Shows: Cancelled
Country Bank Donates $250,000 to Four Local Hospitals
M2M Discounts
Karl Storz Donates $5K to the Chamber
State Income Tax Filing Deadline
SBA Bridge Loans
Second Chance Programs Update
Paint & Sip... at Home!
QVCDC Programs
Remote Telephony Solutions
Reduce Energy Costs
WCAC's Home Heating Program
CBD Wholesaler Takes on Covid-19
ETP: New Game & Contest!
Cornerstone Makes Donation to DCEF
Rapscallion's Disc Golf Course
American Pickers to Film in MA
TLGV Cancels Programs
Loan Officers Wanted
NBSB Participates in Jobs for New England Program
Federated Church Announces Cancellations
Set Up to Work from Home?
United Way Receives Donation from Cornerstone Bank
United Way Pub Quiz
QCC Students Need Your Help
Your Hometown Business Directory
Free Marketing Video Conference
Salem Cross Inn Dining
Easter at Table 3 Restaurants
Cooking with Rico
Hophead Fest
Second Chance Mobile Pet Adoption
Village Toastmasters Meetings
24/7 Online Training
New Member Baskets
Save These Dates!
Chamber of Commerce 
Board of Directors
Executive Committee
Laurie Cashman 
Yellow Iris Farm
Erika Travinski
1st Vice Chair 
Jessica Bettencourt
Immediate Past Chair
Bruce Watkins
Karl Storz Endovision

Board Members

Brad Arcoite
Table 3 Restaurant Group 
Michael Checkosky
Angela Chviek
Alycia Dzik
Rich Eichacker

Michelle Fanion
ERA Key Realty

Les Gardner
Les Gardner Photography

Nathan Hardt
Leila Hurt
Lynn Mero
Southbridge Credit Union  
Rich Suitum

Michael Wales
Michael L. Wales Painting Co. 

Jim Donahue
Honorary Board Member
Padgett D. Berthiaume
Chamber Staff
Executive Director
Finance & Administration
Communications Specialist

Chamber Links

Cms Chamber

Stur Townships - Everything but Ordinary

We hope you are staying safe and upbeat in these challenging times. The well-being of your families and our community is our foremost concern. Due to the Governor's Emergency Order, which was just extended, OUR OFFICE WILL REMAIN CLOSED UNTIL NOON ON MAY 4. 
Our staff is working remotely and if we can provide any resources, connect you with needed goods and services, or answer a question PLEASE CONTACT US.
As circumstances change, we realize your needs may have changed. We will strive to gather trusted resources and ways to communicate them to you. 
The Chamber is looking into holding weekly Member meetings via ZOOM to help us all keep in touch whether in the office or working from home. 
It is our privilege and we stand ready to assist our Members and neighbors in any way possible. 
Share your news with Crossroads! Thank you for emailing us your press releases, links and photos for inclusion in Crossroads!  We love to share your events with our readers. Keep posting your happenings to our online events calendar so we can share them with over 900 subscribers!
Extra for Experts! Connect with us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest for more from your Chamber!
UPDATE: Work at Home Order  
Extended to May 4
Due to Governor Baker's order requiring non-essential businesses to close as of noon on Tuesday, March 24th, the Chamber office is closed and will remain closed through May 4. Chamber programs and events, including  Fun at Five, are suspended until further notice.  
Below please find important links to COVID-19 Essential Services, the Emergency Order and a copy of the Guidance of Assemblages.
Get statewide COVID-19 updates here:
COVID-19 Resources and Guidance for Businesses: 
CMS Chamber logo  
Welcome New Members!
 Please join us as we welcome the newest Members to the Chamber of Central Mass South!
Lake Road Living
A Fashion Boutique
371 Main Street, Sturbridge, MA
SERVPRO of Worcester
SERVPRO of Shrewsbury/Westborough
"Like it Never Happened" Fire & Water Damage
10 Pullman Street, Suite F, Worcester, MA
June 25, 2020
9:00am Shotgun Start
Heritage Country Club, Charlton, MA
Benefits The Chamber Scholarships & Charities Fund
Cancellation of the MAY 2020  
Brimfield Flea Market 
POSTED ON: MARCH 30, 2020 - 9:50PM
In light of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' March 10th, 2020 Declaration of a State of Emergency related to the COVID-19 outbreak and given the subsequent Orders from the Governor's office, including the March 23rd Order to restrict non-essential workers and restrict public gatherings to under 10 people, and, in consideration of the increase of COVID-19 cases around the globe and in the Commonwealth, it is the decision of the Select Board that it would be contrary to the public good to consider having the Brimfield Flea Antique Market scheduled for May 12, 2020.  It is with a heavy heart that the Select Board makes this decision to officially declare the MAY show canceled.
We acknowledge the hope expressed earlier this month to consider delaying the definitive public declaration of the cancellation until April 15th, 2020. The extent of the COVID-19 outbreak has escalated considerably since that time. It would be unwise to even consider allowing the influx of thousands of individuals from areas outside of this region.  Though the situation may hopefully improve by that time, we cannot foresee the level of improvement as of April 15th being substantial enough to lift the Orders limiting public gatherings to a level that would allow such a populous event. The Select Board saw no reason to delay this decision. 
Please continue to take safety precautions and stay safe.
Paul McCarthy
Chair, Select Board
Town of Brimfield
Country Bank Donates $250,000
to Four Local Hospitals
Country Bank announced today (March 19, 2020) it has donated $250,000 to four local hospitals to help assist with the work they are doing for their patients as they fight the COVID-19 pandemic. The hospitals receiving donations include Baystate Health in Springfield, Harrington Hospital in Southbridge, UMass Memorial, and Saint Vincent Hospital in Worcester. "We are so grateful to Country Bank for its most generous support and appreciate its continued partnership during this unprecedented time. This gift will directly support resources needed at Baystate Health as we continue to address and prepare for the care our community needs as we face this worldwide pandemic," stated Scott Berg, Vice President of Philanthropy, Baystate Health, and Executive Director, Baystate Health Foundation.
"These are challenging and ever-evolving times as we face uncertainty regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. As a community partner, we care deeply about our communities, and we wanted to support our local hospitals to help ease their financial burden as they continue to offer exceptional care to our friends and neighbors in the region," stated Paul Scully, President, and CEO at Country Bank.
About Country Bank
Country Bank is a full-service mutual community bank serving central and western Massachusetts with 14 offices in Ware, Palmer, West Brookfield, Brimfield, Belchertown, Wilbraham, Ludlow, Leicester, Paxton, Charlton, and Worcester. Country Bank is a member of FDIC, DIF, and the SUM network. Country Bank can be reached at 800-322-8233 or online at .
M2M logo  
Karl Storz donation
Thank you, Karl Storz!

Karl Storz just donated $5000 to the Chamber to use as needed. They know we have already taken a hit to some of our fundraiser/non-member dues revenue, and will continue to do so. As they are in the medical device manufacturing space, with products routinely in use with patients with Covid 19, they are ramping up production six-fold. They are also practicing industry standard WHO safety protocols at their Charlton facility. You will see in the photo we kept a safe distance from one another.

Pictured (L-R): Amanda Martin, Chris Weiland, Alix McNitt, Bruce Watkins, Margarita Navarro and Pieter du Plessis.
Massachusetts Announces State Income Tax Filing Deadline  
Being Extended to July 15
BOSTON - Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Robert DeLeo today announced an agreement to extend the 2019 state individual income tax filing and payment deadline from April 15 to July 15 due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. This income tax relief is automatic and taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms to qualify.
"Massachusetts will move the state personal income tax filing and payment deadline to July 15, consistent with the federal government, in order to provide additional flexibility to filers during this crisis," said Governor Charlie Baker. "In partnership with our colleagues in the Legislature, we are committed to providing this flexibility to taxpayers in a way that protects the Commonwealth's strong fiscal footing that we have all worked hard to develop over the past several years."
"We are proud to work with the Legislature to provide meaningful relief to people throughout the Commonwealth during this public health emergency," said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. "This extension will afford taxpayers additional time to file their Massachusetts individual income tax returns as we carry out the historic response to the COVID-19 outbreak."
"The top priority during this public health crisis is to address the immediate needs facing our residents," said Senate President Karen E. Spilka. "Our message is clear: residents should stay home and avoid social contact to be safe. Extending the tax deadline helps us accomplish that goal and provides peace of mind. I want to thank Chair Rodrigues, as well as our partners in the House and the Administration for their continued collaboration in confronting the challenges facing our Commonwealth."
"The House, in partnership with the Senate and the Administration, agreed to an extension of the state tax filing deadline to ease the burden on individuals while agreeing to borrowing measures that would protect the Commonwealth's revenue stream," said House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo. "Thank you to Chair Michlewitz for his leadership in ensuring the Commonwealth's fiscal viability while providing tax relief to those unduly effected by this crisis."
Today's announcement will move the state income tax filing deadline to match the July 15 deadline for filing federal individual income taxes. Legislation will be filed in the near future to finance the extension, and accompanying administrative changes will be implemented through the Department of Revenue. Specifically, the legislation will authorize the Commonwealth borrowing flexibility to manage deferred revenue this fiscal year and repay it in the next fiscal year, which starts July 1, 2020. 
Individuals with questions or concerns regarding taxes can contact the Massachusetts Department of Revenue at (617) 887-6367 or send a secure e-message through MassTaxConnect.
The Commonwealth will continue to update the public on further developments and individuals are encouraged to consult both the  Department of Public Health  and the US  Centers for Disease Control  and Prevention websites for the most up to date information.
The latest information and guidance regarding COVID-19 is always available at .
From the MA Office of Housing & Economic Development:
Small Business Administration Express Bridge Loan
The Small Business Administration is offering an Express Bridge Loan Program to small businesses impacted by COVID-19. This program authorizes SBA Express Lenders to provide expedited SBA-guaranteed bridge loan financing on an emergency basis in amounts up to $25,000 for disaster-related purposes to small businesses who have applied for and await long-term financing (including the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program<>). Small businesses who are already working with an SBA Express Lender may be eligible to apply to this streamlined program. Interested businesses should ask their SBA lender about this option.
Second Chance Animal Services Programs Update

We know there have been many updates so here's the status of our programs:
Hospital Appointments - As an essential service, all hospitals are committed to continuing to serve the pets that need care while safeguarding the health of all. At this time, we are restricting access inside the hospitals to mitigate exposure - appointment will be met in the parking lot (sidewalk in Worcester.) We'll take your pet inside and conduct exams via phone. At this time we are in the process of rescheduling non-urgent appointment. Our staff will reach out to affected pet owners to reschedule. Evening and weekend hours have been suspended until normal operations resume.

All Walk-In Vaccine & Microchip Clinics and Spa Day Clinics have been suspended until further notice.

Spay/Neuter Clinics - We have suspended our spay/neuter clinics in our hospitals to conserve supplies needed for emergency surgeries. Affected clients will be contacted and we ask for patience from anyone who has recently filled out a SPOT application.

Mobile & Local Vaccine Clinics have been postponed until further notice. We will work to reschedule clinics as soon as we are able.

The Adoption Center is currently open for published adoption hours so we can continue to find fur'ever homes for pets who have already been through so much. While many of you will be spending more time at home, right now might be a great time to adopt. Visitors are limited to one family at a time for everyone's safety. Please come to the door to check in.

All cats were adopted this past weekend at our Satellite Adoptions inside the Framingham and Northborough PetSmarts. We continue to monitor the situation closely with our PetSmart partners and will update when we are able to bring more cats to these locations..

All Mobile Adoption Events have been suspended until further notice. We look forward to getting back on the road when it's safe for everyone.

We are continuing to distribute food to our food pantry partners and expect the need to increase. We are currently low on dry cat food. Anyone who would like to help can have food sent directly to Second Chance, 111 Young Road, East Brookfield, MA 01515

Volunteers - yesterday we asked volunteers to stay home. The animals and staff will miss their daily visits, but we want to keep these very important people safe! Rest assured we have plans for the pets in our care and we look forward to welcoming everyone back as soon as we can.
Fosters - at this time our foster program mailbox is full of applications! Thank you to everyone who has reached out to help! We ask for you patience and understanding.
The 21st Annual Dinner Auction was originally rescheduled for May 9th. We realize this date may not be possible. We are continuing to assess the situation with our good friends at the Southbridge Hotel & Conference Center and are looking forward to hosting a live event for all to enjoy when safe.

Please consider adopting - many people will be spending more time at home right now so it might be a great time to adopt. If you aren't ready to adopt, please encourage others to do so by sharing pets we spotlight or creating your own spotlight from our adoptable pets page at

Donate - we need your support to continue to provide all the critical programs pets in need rely on. Please consider making a donation here or through our website:

Paint & Sip... at Home!
So many styles to choose from... Visit on Facebook for lots more!

Denise at Brush It Off is back to making take home to paint kits! Check out the photos on facebook for names and prices. Please PRIVATE Facebook MESSAGE DENISE YOUR ORDER. Denise will put your order together after payment is made and you will be able to pick it up at the building. NO ONE WILL BE ALLOWED IN THE STUDIO.

Visit on Facebook
Birthday paint 

How about a touch of BIRTHDAY Sun Shine!

FREE take home to paint kit from Brush It Off to any local child whose Birthday fell during this shelter in place crisis. Choose one of 2 canvasses - the Unicorn or Baby Yoda, either is a pre-sketched canvas and includes paints.

Child's birthday must land between 3/1 - 4/30.

Facebook Message Denise at Brush It Off.

Remote Telephony Solutions
On March 26, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker issued a stay at home advisory and ordered all non-essential businesses to close throughout the state. Connectivity Point (Leicester, Massachusetts) and their telephony division is considered essential and will continue to operate in the state.
Connectivity Point is taking the COVID-19 pandemic seriously and the safety of our employees, partners, and customers is our top priority. Connectivity Point is taking every available precaution to ensure continued safety while providing essential business services.
Connectivity Point Telephony Engineers and Technicians can assist with what solution is the best for you. In most cases, this work can be done remotely to prevent any direct in-person contact. In hopes of assisting our business partners and customers in this unusually difficult time, Connectivity Point will invoice on the half-hour instead of the typical 1-hour minimum Please call Connectivity Point at  508-797-6612  or mail  to find out which of the following solutions is best for you.
1.       Telephone company call forwarding to a cell phone
2.       Set up a full- time automated attendant.
3.       Minimal staff
4.       Forward extensions to cell phones
5.       Forward to voicemail and/or voice mail to email
6.       Smart phone apps
7.      Remote IP phones  
Radical Solutions Offers Options to Reduce Energy Costs 
Radical Solutions is open, and scheduling calls with businesses every day to help them understand what options are available to reduce utility costs.  Most importantly we are here to answer questions, and to work with businesses to put a plan in place either now, or when they are able to open again.
Some things business owners should consider:
1. Electric and Gas rates are at historic lows.  We understand it may be hard to look into the future at the moment, but locking in rates now will pay dividends as rates normalize.
2. As soon as Governor Baker lifts the business closures we will have the resources available to come and audit businesses free of charge to help them find ways to reduce electricity
3. Community Solar Farms are available and have capacity.  Businesses can elect to enroll in their programs to use solar energy, all while receiving an 8-12% credit on their utility bill.
If any member would like to chat about this, or want to trade emails please reach out either by email, cell phone (below), or by clicking here to open up my calendar and pick a scheduled time that works best for you.
Richard Day, President/Owner
WCAC's Home Heating Assistance Program
Worcester Community Action Council, Inc. oversees the home heating assistance program for our region. If you or someone you know is struggling to keep up with home heating bills, please reach out! While WCAC's main office is closed to the public, staff is available via phone/email.
For heating emergencies, call 508-754-1176, option 2 and someone will return your call. Please note that publicly held electric & gas utilities have suspended shut-offs thru the state of emergency.
If you are a first time applicant, have never applied before and now think you may be eligible, text HEAT to 80123 and a staff member will call you. For a Spanish-speaking representative, Text CALOR to 80123.
If you are an existing client who's household is already eligible and your income has decreased significantly, email us at, requesting to appeal your benefit. We will verify your new income and may be able to increase your benefit.
Additional info/details available at
Hand-Sanitizer! We have increased capacity, new size offerings and continue priority fulfillment
Available with or without CBD - CBG!

In light of the continued COVID-19 pandemic, High Purity Natural Products, a Southbridge Massachusetts based CBD contract manufacturer has switched gears and begun producing high-quality hand-sanitizer products to fulfill the high demand.
"We have seen what is going on out there, customers are providing incredible demand for this product", said Mike Matton, CEO of High Purity, "we are happy to help so many people stay healthy during these troubling times."
High Purity Natural Products is offering the hand-sanitizer to retailers, hospitals, food companies, or anyone who needs large quantities. They are also donating products to local town officials and service providers to thank them for their service. High Purity is offering the hand-sanitizer with, or without CBD product in containers as small as 1.5 oz, up to 55-gallon drums.
"Our customers have given us great feedback on the CBD boosted products" continued Matton, "the CBD helps soothe sore hands and the CBG has anti-microbial properties. The CBD - CBG products are of course, compliant to sell in 50 states."
High Purity is encouraging any retailer or medical facility in need of hand-sanitizer to get in touch, via their website, They are prioritizing orders with increased capacity for as long as necessary.

Hand-Sanitizer: Our Scientist Approves.
When the demand for hand-sanitizer rose to new levels in the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic our Chief Scientific Officer Gair Laucius took note. He recognized the need for the most effective hand-sanitizer possible. That's why he consulted with guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food & Drug Administration (FDA).
Our hand-sanitizer is compounded using only the following United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) grade ingredients in the preparation of the final product.
It is safe, proven, approved, and most importantly of all, effective.
We are here to help! We continue to prioritize these orders and will deliver them as soon as possible. Please call today, (617) 837-6892 .
Winner will walk away with a prize valued at $400
Zodiac Contest
Escape the Pike is launching a contest; can you decode a cipher and puzzle out the identity they have assigned to the Zodiac Killer?  If you can, you could be the sole winner of two free Private Game gift certificates to Escape the Pike.  The prize, valued at $400, will accommodate as many as eight players per escape room game and can be redeemed for current or future games, birthday parties, corporate team-building, or other special events.  The "Name the Zodiac Killer Contest" and prize are being offered to announce the opening of "Son of the Zodiac"- the long-anticipated third escape room game to be offered at the business which is located in Sturbridge.
In the 1960s and 70s, The Zodiac Killer was infamous for releasing a series of messages and ciphers that dared people to uncover his identity as a means to end a serial killing spree. Although a few individuals, over the course of five decades, have claimed to uncover the identity of the killer, no translations of his second cipher have been accepted as the correct solution by the case investigators. His identity has remained a mystery.  Those who enter into the story line of Escape the Pike's "Son of the Zodiac" game have identified who the Zodiac Killer is, inadvertently making them a target of his son's wrath- from whom they must escape.  The game is a horror-thriller not suitable for children.  Players are immersed in an environment meant to saturate the senses with that which evokes slight fear- darkness, confinement, musty odors, and dampness.
Escape the Pike, for the fun of their contest, has assigned an identity to the Zodiac Killer that escape room enthusiasts can attempt to uncover.  Anyone who wishes to enter the contest has 20 days to decode a cipher, solve the puzzle, and submit their entry.  Escape room players are accustomed to getting clues from their Game Master to help them successfully overcome challenges.  Those who wish to enter the contest can access three clues on the contest website if they need help.  The cipher, clues, entry form, and contest rules and directions can be found at  The contest will run from April 4- 24, 2020.  Escape the Pike will announce the winner of the contest in a live video on their Facebook page at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 25th.  On the same day, they will open "Son of the Zodiac" to the general public.  Those interested in playing may pre-book their game at throughout the duration of the contest.
Escape the Pike currently offers two other escape rooms: an apocalyptic-themed bunker game called "Podunk" and a magical King Arthur- themed game called "Merlin's Vision."  Games can be booked online or by calling (774) 241-0508.   
For more information, Escape the Pike can be found on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and at  Escape the Pike is located at 179 Main St., Sturbridge, MA.   
Cornerstone Bank Makes Donation to the  
Dudley-Charlton Education Foundation  
Cornerstone DCEF Donation
Pictured here, L to R: Cornerstone Bank AVP/Business Development Sales Manager and DCEF Vice President Sabrina L. Webb; DCEF Board Member Kate Pesa; DCEF President John Grondalski; Cornerstone Bank President & Treasurer and Chairman of the Bank's Charitable Donations Committee Todd M. Tallman.
Cornerstone Bank is pleased to announce its recent donation of $2,500 to the Dudley-Charlton Education Foundation (DCEF), in support of its mission to provide innovative and creative learning opportunities for the district's seven public schools.

The Dudley-Charlton Education Foundation promotes educational excellence by strengthening community support and funding programs that encourage innovation and enrichment throughout the district. DCEF offers grants to create programs that foster leadership, creativity and advanced problem-solving skills.

"Every student deserves to have access to as many learning opportunities as possible," said Cornerstone Bank President & Treasurer and Chairman of the Bank's Charitable Donations Committee Todd M. Tallman. "We are pleased to assist the Dudley-Charlton Education Foundation and help them continue their mission of funding programs for our local schools."

For more information about the Dudley-Charlton Education Foundation, please visit: .
Recent Updates to the Rapscallion Disc Golf Course
Rapscallion Disc Golf Course

Volunteers have been busy clearing, cutting and burning brush and dead trees on the course.
We want to take this opportunity to thank all our volunteers - many mug club members and non-members as well as two private course crews from Crooked Birch and S D H Snake Dik Hill. Our volunteers are instrumental in maintaining the condition of the course - so a giant 'thank you' to them!
Unfortunately, the  Hyland Resurrection Triples scheduled for  Sunday - April 5, 2020 has been cancelled. Check back in 2021!
See more at the Rapscallion website
AMERICAN PICKERS to Film in New England
Mike Wolfe, Frank Fritz, and their team are excited to return to Massachusetts! They plan to film episodes of the hit series American Pickers throughout our area potentially this summer. 
We understand that with the proliferation of COVID-19, we are all facing very uncertain times, and everything is changing daily. We at American Pickers are taking this pandemic very seriously and will be adjusting our schedule accordingly for the safety of those who appear on our show and our crew. We won't be picking until everybody is safe, so if we cannot make it this summer, nobody's time is wasted as we will re-schedule to a date when conditions allow filming. However, we are excited to continue to reach the many collectors in the area to discuss their years of picking!

AMERICAN PICKERS is a documentary series that explores the fascinating world of antique "picking" on History. The hit show follows Mike and Frank, two of the most skilled pickers in the business, as they hunt for America's most valuable antiques. They are always excited to find sizeable, unique collections and learn the interesting stories behind them.
As they hit the back roads from coast to coast, Mike and Frank are on a mission to recycle and rescue forgotten relics. Along the way, the Pickers want to meet characters with remarkable and exceptional items. The pair hopes to give historically significant objects a new lease on life, while learning a thing or two about America's past along the way.
Mike and Frank have seen a lot of rusty gold over the years and are always looking to discover something they've never seen before. They are ready to find extraordinary items and hear fascinating tales about them. AMERICAN PICKERS is looking for leads and would love to explore your hidden treasure. If you or someone you know has a large, private collection or accumulation of antiques that the Pickers can spend the better part of the day looking through, send us your name, phone number, location and description of the collection with photos to: or call 855-OLD-RUST.
TLGV Cancelling Programs Through April
The Last Green Valley, Inc. (TLGV) will be cancelling all indoor and outdoor meetings, workshops and programs through the end of March.
In addition, all indoor meetings, workshops and programs are cancelled through the end of April.
TLGV's offices in Danielson are also closed to the public until the end of April. We will be continuing to work remotely on behalf of The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor. We will be checking voicemails and email daily, however, please know the office coverage will be sporadic.
Spring Outdoors has also been put on hold. Many Spring Outdoors programs are run by our partners and it is up to them individually to determine whether they want to continue offering those programs. TLGV has pulled the Spring Outdoors guide and will not be updating at this time.
We hope to resume hosting outdoor programs, including Spring Outdoors, in April but will update our members and supporters in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, we encourage you to enjoy the outdoors and explore The Last Green Valley's trails and open spaces. Watch our social media feeds for recommended hikes and outdoor activities!
The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor is the last stretch of dark night sky in the coastal sprawl between Boston and Washington, D.C.  The Last Green Valley, Inc. works for you in the National Heritage Corridor. Together we can care for it, enjoy it and pass it on!
Norcom Mortgage is on the hunt for licensed and experienced Loan Officers.

Do you have 2+ years of MORTGAGE EXPERIENCE?

Do you have a solid knowledge of FHA, CONVENTIONAL & VA LOANS?



Please share this information with your friends and colleagues who may have an interest!
Thank you!

This is not an offer to make a loan or to make a loan or any particular terms. All loan applicants must qualify under underwriting requirements and satisfy all contingencies of loan approval. Rates and terms subject to change without notice. NMLS ID #71655 (
North Brookfield Savings Bank Participates in
FHLBank of Boston's Jobs for New England Program
NBSB helps qualifying small businesses to obtain low-interest,  
below market financing through JNE
North Brookfield Saving Bank is participating in the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston's (FHLBB) Jobs for New England (JNE) program, which allows The NBSB Business Center to offer below market-rate, low-interest financing for small business loans that create or preserve jobs, expand woman-owned, minority-owned, or veteran-owned businesses, or otherwise stimulate the local economy.
"The FHLBB Jobs for New England program is such a valuable tool for our small businesses and allows North Brookfield Savings Bank the opportunity to provide our small business customers with even lower interest financing so they can borrow for less and grow their business," said Rick Egan, Vice President, Senior Commercial Lender. "This further supports our goal to support small businesses and the local economy that we serve."
As a member of the FHLBB, North Brookfield Savings Bank can offer members extremely low percentage financing for small business loans that meet certain criteria set by the FHLBB. The small business loan funds must be utilized to create or preserve jobs, expand woman-owned, minority-owned or veteran-owned businesses or support the local economy in another quantifiable way. The program includes two funding periods with the first application period beginning January 13, 2020 and the second period beginning on April 29, 2020.
Recently, North Brookfield Savings Bank partnered with Jessica Bettencourt, President and owner of the well-known Klem's department store located on Route 9 in Spencer, MA. Jessica has a vision for her family's business and when she approached North Brookfield Savings Bank to share her expansion goals for the Klem's building she was recommended a financing option that provided the most value to her business. Due to NBSB being a FHLBB member and Jessica's goals to expand a women-owned business, she was able to take advantage of the Jobs for New England program. NBSB's guidance allowed Jessica to benefit from the program and see the expansion goals become a reality.
"When I visited North Brookfield Savings Bank to discuss my expansion goals for Klem's I was not aware of this program as a financing option for me," said Jessica Bettencourt, President and owner Klem's. "Because of their knowledge of the program, and their genuine attention to my vision, I was able to see the expansion goals become reality and save considerable funds that I could refocus back into the success of my business."
North Brookfield Savings Bank's has an experienced and knowledgeable Business Center Team comprised of Business Lenders and professionals who are ready to help businesses reach their financial goals. If you are interested in learning more about the FHLBB Jobs for New England program please contact The North Brookfield Savings Bank Business Center at 508-637-7500 or .
Federated Church of Sturbridge & Fiskdale Announces Cancellations

The Federated Church of Sturbridge & Fiskdale has canceled worship services and other church-related gatherings until further notice. 

In a notification to church Members on Monday, March 16 Leigh Darrin, president of the church's executive board cited Governor Baker's emergency declaration prohibiting gatherings of more than 25 people. Darrin said Pastor Gretchen Switzer plans to prepare and send out pastoral messages and discussions are underway about the possibility of offering a virtual online worship service.
In addition to worship services and other scheduled public events, the executive board has recommended that all church-related gatherings be canceled for the time being. The meetinghouse will remain open to community groups that regularly use the facility, such as local support groups, but participants should check with their own organization for guidance on cancellations.
"This crisis may make many of you feel isolated, vulnerable and afraid," Darrin told church Members, "but let us remember that this will pass! Until then, please reach out to the Pastor Gretchen via email ( or phone (508-852-7413) or anyone else in the congregation if you want to talk or need assistance."

Need Help Getting Set Up to Work from Home?
Call Power Computers

If your company is stressing and does not have the know-how to get your employees set up to work from home, give Dave a call. There are a couple of different low-cost ways to do it.

Reach Dave for work-at-home solutions.
Dave Gagnon Power Computers
United Way Receives $49,000 Donation  
from Cornerstone Bank and Employees      
Cornerstone Donates to United Way
Featured here with Cornerstone Bank employees are representatives from the United Way of Southbridge, Sturbridge, and Charlton (UW SSC). From left: UW SSC Executive Director Mary O'Coin and UW SSC 2019 Campaign Chair Dawna Dagenais, Cornerstone Bank President & Treasurer and Chairman of the Bank's Charitable Donations Committee Todd M. Tallman; UW SSC Board President April Parzych; and Cornerstone Bank VP/Controller and UW SSC Treasurer Scott M. Dungey

Cornerstone Bank is pleased to announce its recent donation of $49,312 to three local United Way organizations. This donation reflects an employee gift of $24,656, with a matching contribution from the Bank.

The United Way is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the educational, economic and healthcare needs of people worldwide. The $49,312 donation raised through the Bank campaign will support three different United Way organizations: United Way of Southbridge, Sturbridge, and Charlton; United Way of Webster and Dudley; and United Way of Central Massachusetts.

"I am extremely proud to be associated with both organizations," stated Cornerstone Bank VP/Controller and UW SSC Treasurer Scott M. Dungey. "Cornerstone Bank has such caring and generous employees and the corporate match demonstrates the Bank's commitment to giving back to the community. With being on the United Way Board of Directors, I know these funds are being stretched as far as they can to touch as many people in our community as possible."

"United Way has been helping people in need for such a long time, its reputation and charitable services are impeccable," commented Cornerstone Bank President and Treasurer Todd M. Tallman.
"Cornerstone Bank is pleased to play a role in supporting its efforts, and I am so proud of all the people here who were instrumental in making this happen."

For more information on the local United Way organizations, please visit ,  and .
Pub Quiz
Sponsored by Dexter-Russell 
Old Sturbridge Village - Oliver Wight Tavern, Sturbridge, MA
JULY 22, 2020
Check in: 6:00pm, Game: 7:00pm 
Test your knowledge against the best trivia buffs in the area.
Compete for the coveted SHARPEST KNIVES IN THE BLOCK trophy and jackets.
Teams of 4 - $100 per Team 
Individual and Team Registration available.
Optional Dinner Buffet available for purchase 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM - $25 per person.  
Dinner Buffet Reservation and payment due prior to event  
Cash Bar 
Registration is available at Space is limited. 
First come - first served. 
Call (508) 765-5491 for more information.
QCC Students Need Your Help 
During these uncertain and evolving times, it is imperative that we remain focused on our goal of taking care of those who we are committed to assisting - our students. As a new normal begins to take shape, we want to reach out and ask each of you for help, as we weather this crisis together.
QCC, similar to most other higher education institutions in the country, has adopted remote instruction to comply with social distancing guidelines established by national and state public health entities for the safety of our students, faculty and staff. As QCC transitions to remote instruction, we need your help in making sure our students have access to the education we promised them. We know that during this time of crisis many of our students will lose their jobs, exacerbating their already existing challenges to afford housing, transportation, food, childcare, utilities, home supplies, Internet and other basic needs. We are working diligently to identify funds that support our students who have been, and will continue to be, hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Our student population is an amazingly diverse population made up of first generation college students, adult learners, full-time workers, single parents and many others, who have all put their faith and trust in QCC to help them attain their dreams of a better future. However, many of these students are experiencing financial hardships and challenges. In fact, close to 50 percent of our students are housing and food insecure and often lack the technological resources that we tend to take for granted when we think about college students. As this national crisis continues to unfold, our students needs will continue to deepen in the weeks and months to come.
To help in during this difficult time, the QCC Foundation has created the Student Emergency Fund to provide timely financial support to students in emergency circumstances. The Foundation has allocated $25,000 in this fund; however, our students' needs are great and this funding will only go so far.
Please consider making a gift today to the QCC Foundation Student Emergency Fund and help our students in need. Your support will deliver immediate assistance to students who depend upon us.
During these difficult times, let us focus on what we can do, how we can help, and together we will overcome the adversities before us. Please stay well, stay strong and be kind to one another.
To make a gift to the QCC Foundation Student Emergency Fund visit
Biz Directory
Are you an independent local business? If so, create a listing for your business here - free of charge on the NEW Your Hometown Business Directory.
Learn more about our advertisers and other independent businesses in your local community in this online Business Directory from Your Hometown Shopper, "your source for all things local!"
Need work done around the house? Consult our Directory for the names of independent contractors who can get the job done! Looking for gift ideas and unique shopping experiences? Our retailers offer great places to start. Looking for a new place to dine out? We offer a delicious menu of options. Looking for new place to exercise and work on your health and well-being? Start your journey here. Looking to buy or sell? Our realtors are local and the best in the business!
Check back regularly as new listings are being added daily. Bookmark us on your computer and phone, and you'll have anywhere-anytime access to the businesses and people that make living and working in our community so special. Thank you for shopping and supporting local!
Lights! Camera! Marketing! How to Promote via Video
Free Video Conference

If a picture paints a thousand words, what kind of canvas is available to those who want to tell their story through video? The Communicators Club will unspool that mystery from 11:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. on Tuesday, April 7, when KFP Media proprietor Kristen Flynn directs our guests in the ways to harness that powerful medium. Register for free here.

Note: Due to Coronavirus concerns, the event will take place via video-conference at no cost to all who register.
Old Sturbridge Village  
Maple Days
O ld Sturbridge Village and Oliver Wight Tavern are currently CLOSED to the public. Please visit online for the most up-to-date information.  
See full details and updates here.
Salem Cross Inn logo
260 West Main Street, Route 9, West Brookfield, MA
Rich with history, the Salem Cross Inn is a restored 18th century farmhouse  
nestled on 600 acres of New England countryside.  
A Wedding Wire Couples' Choice Award
and The Knot Best of Weddings Award recipient for 2020.

Visit Salem Cross Inn on Facebook 
for updates (including weather), event photos and future menu postings!
Easter Bunny
Easter at Table 3 Restaurants, Sunday, April 12
Table 3 is Working on Easter Meals for Take-out: Stay Tuned!

For a special Easter celebration leave the cooking to the Table 3 chefs. Our talented chefs have prepared sensational menus for Easter Sunday. The Duck and Avellino will be serving a traditional pre-fixe menu with all your holiday favorites. Cedar Street Grille will be offering their unique brunch menu all day plus some great Easter specials. Make your reservation now and enjoy a holiday free from stress in one of our fine local restaurants.

Call 508-347-2321 for The Duck & Avellino seating: 11am-4pm
Call 508-347-5800 for Cedar Street Grille seating: 10am-4pm

Cooking with Rico
Abruzzo-Adriatic coastline and the Apennine Mountains
Avellino, Thursday, April 16, 6:30pm

With the Apennine Mountains to the west and the Adriatic Sea to the east, Abruzzo is one of Italy's most stunning regions. Still wild and unspoiled, its fantastic food reflects the simple agricultural practices that have shaped the area. The traditional cuisine of Abruzzo is eclectic, drawing on pastoral, mountain, and coastal cuisine. Staples of Abruzzo cuisine include bread, pasta, meat, cheese, and wine. The isolation which has characterized the region for decades has ensured the independence of its culinary tradition from those of nearby regions.

Chef Rico will combine the best ingredients from the Abruzzo region and will show you how to create these wonderfully inspired dishes at home. As always, you'll get to try them all with wine parings while enjoying a great night out. This event is $55 per person with wine pairings, or $41 without. Tax and gratuity are not included. These events sell out quickly so make your reservation now by calling Avellino at 508-347-2321.
Hophead Fest
2020 Hophead Fest at Rapscallion Brewery
April 17-18
The second of four annual festivals at the brewery, and one of the longest-running, Hophead Fest welcomes over a dozen guest beers, featuring the hoppiest selections the area has to offer. Live music in the taproom from Dodeca, LiveStock, and James Keyes.
Second Chance Mobile Unit Pet Adoption | CANCELLED
We're monitoring the evolving Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation closely and are relying on guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and state health officials to inform our recommendations.
We realize minimizing contact can also help prevent the spread of illness, and we are 

We will do our best to keep you updated with any changes.
At Klem's we have been serving the community for over 70 years 
and hope to be able to serve you long into the future.

Village Toastmasters Weekly Meetings
Thursday Evenings, 7:00-8:15pm
46 Hall Road, Sturbridge
Village Toastmasters
Village Toastmasters is a local group focused on helping its members improve their public speaking and leadership skill while building confidence in their abilities.  
As of Thursday, April 27, 2017, Village Toastmasters will meet every Thursday from 7:00-8:15 pm  
at the offices of the Chamber of Central Mass South, located at 46 Hall Road, Sturbridge.
Guests are always welcome!!  
Please arrive 15 minutes early (6:45pm) as meetings start promptly.  

Click on the image to browse our catalog of Coggno training courses!
We Welcome Interesting Goodies for our Welcome Baskets!  


New member Baskets

The Chamber has teamed up with the Center of Hope to create gift baskets to welcome new members to the Chamber of Central Mass South. The Chamber presents our new members with gift baskets that will not only have a monetary value but also to give the recipient an opportunity to learn more about other Chamber members and their services. These baskets make a terrific first impression and are a great way to introduce your business to new prospects. Can you help us fill these baskets with interesting goodies?   


We are always seeking interesting, practical items to include in our welcome baskets. We welcome your contributions of items like modest gift certificates, discount coupons, items with your company's logo like piggy banks, thumb drives and coffee mugs, free trial items, small items your company manufactures or whatever else might promote your company and be a value to our new members.


We are looking to assemble about a dozen baskets at a time so that time sensitive material will not be out of date when received. If you would like to donate items for this program, please drop them off at the Chamber office or give us a call to arrange pick up your donated items. Contact Alix at 508-347-2761 or e-mail if you have any questions or to arrange a pickup. Thank you for your contributions!

Important Dates to Save!
April 12: Happy Easter!  
April 17-18: Hophead Fest at Rapscallion Brewery
June 25: CMS Chamber GOLF CLASSIC at Heritage Country Club  
July 22: NEW DATE! United Way Pub Quiz    
new business chamber logo