Welcome to CROSSROADS NEWS!
Crossroads is in your inbox one day early so we can leap right into February without hesitation. We hope you will join us at The Sturbridge Host Hotel this month for a Mid-Winter Warm-Up Fun at Five. We will also be hosting a free presentation by Quinsigamond Community College on Workforce Training Grants and Soft Skills Workshops at the Chamber office on the 13th. Come hear how you can receive free training for your employees. You will also discover fun events and interesting news items from our Members and friends in this issue.
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NETWORK WITH YOUR CHAMBER
Fun at Five!
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Sturbridge Host Hotel & Conference Center
366 Main Street (Rte 20), Sturbridge, 508-347-7393
Join us for a
Mid-Winter Warm Up Fun at Five
at the Sturbridge Host Hotel and Conference Center. Enjoy a signature cocktail or two offered at a cash bar with complimentary soft drinks and water. Partake in tasty treats and appetizers!
Take a tour of guest rooms, the hotel's meeting space, and historic Oxhead Tavern.
You could win...
A Romance Package
Thanks to our host,
the Sturbridge Host Hotel & Conference Center!
The package includes an overnight guestroom for one night, a four course meal at The Oxhead Tavern for two and Breakfast for two in our Greenhouse Restaurant. (This package is available for one full year after the Fun at Five, based on availability. Peak blackout dates, such as New Year's Eve, will apply.)
A "Just the Details"
Car Detailing Package
Thanks to our sponsor, The Center of Hope!
Register for Fun at Five by email or phone.
Cost is $12 for Members who pre-register,
$15 at the door, or $20 for non-Members.
Thank you to our
February Fun at Five Sponsor!
The Center of Hope
The Center of Hope Foundation has been serving local individuals with disabilities for more than
The Center of Hope Foundation provides people with disabilities and their families the
employment, day services, social and other opportunities to be contributing members of their communities, and to achieve the most fulfilling and meaningful lives possible.
100 Foster Street, Southbridge, 508-764-4085
Welcome New Members!
Please join us as we welcome the newest Members to the Chamber of Central Mass South!
Fisher Tech Solutions
Affordable & Powerful Internet Marketing & Strategy Services. Custom Software Development, Automation & Graphic Design.
10 Julia Ann Drive, Holland, MA
Solid Surface Specialists: Granite, Marble, Quartz for Countertops, Fireplaces, Tub Surrounds, and more.
297 Dennison Drive, Southbridge, MA
Did you know Pioneer can save you on automatic deliveries of oil and propane
when you use your M2M Discount card?
It's time to apply for the
2020 CMS Chamber Scholarships!
The Chamber of Central Mass South typically awards three $1000 scholarships per year. Scholarships are disbursed directly to the student upon presentation of grades from first semester completed after the award is announced and a
minimum 3.0 GPA attained.
Students must be a resident or student within the towns served by the Chamber of Central Mass South. (Southbridge, Sturbridge, Charlton, Spencer, the Brookfields, Warren, Wales, Holland and Brimfield.)
For information call 508-347-2761.
The Chamber does not discriminate against an applicant because of race, color, sex/gender, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, or homelessness.
DOWNLOAD THE 2020 SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATION AS A PDF FILE
Please return the completed application, transcript, recommendations and student essay
by April 1, 2020 to:
Chamber of Central Mass South
46 Hall Road
Sturbridge, MA, 01566
Annual Meeting Recap
On January 22, 2020 , the Chamber presented its Annual Meeting with guest speaker Dr. Charles Steinberg, President of the Worcester Red Sox, at The Barn at Wight Farm in Sturbridge. Over a tasty lunch, we learned about the deal that brought the Sox to Worcester from Pawtucket, and the many modern and innovative concepts that will go into the design and construction of the Sox new ballpark. We look forward to the grand opening and first games at Polar Park in April 2021. The Chamber conveys its sincere gratitude to Dr. Steinberg and his team for presenting and answering all of our questions, our Annual Meeting sponsor, Quinsigamond Community College, the amazing staff at The Barn, Les Gardner for these photos, and all of our guests.
Spotlight on Tuscany
September 30 - October 8, 2020
9 Days, 10 Meals
Get away with your Chamber as we offer this 9-day trip
to Tuscany in Fall of 2020!
The trip includes a single hotel stay (Hotel Ercolini) from which you will visit Montecatini Terme, Florence, Lucca, the World War II Gothic Line, Pisa, take a cooking class, Siena (choose to visit a gothic cathedral or take a guided tour through a Siena neighborhood), take a Winery Tour, visit a Cheese Farm
and San Gimignano.
You can also find pricing and more details.
For more information or to book, please contact
Patti Wilmot or Joe Fitzgerald at
(800) 267-1858 or (413) 668-6202
Contributions are due January 31.
Paid Family and Medical Leave program is here. And if you employ
anyone, your business or non-profit should already be
Find out everything you need to know, including withholding rates, how much you owe, and how to apply for an exemption.
Contributions are due by January 31.
Remit contributions for the Oct. 1-Dec. 31 quarter by
Jan. 31, 2020.
Remit contributions for the Jan. 1-Mar. 31 quarter by
Apr. 30, 2020.
A message from the Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave
Present a Brown Bag Seminar, Host or Sponsor Fun at Five in 2020
The Chamber's Education Committee is currently planning our schedule of Brown Bag Seminars for the first half of 2020. Typically
1-hour long, these seminars are intended to attract intimate audiences of 5-30 people. Seminars are held at the Chamber office on the 4th Tuesday of the month at noon.
Presenting a Brown Bag Seminar is a great way to shine a spotlight on your business and the services you offer. You create the lesson plan, we do the rest including creating the invitations and promoting your seminar.
We are now planning for the months of
March, April, May and June. If you are interested in sharing your expertise with your fellow Chamber Members while promoting yourself and your business, we would love to hear from you!
Just drop Alix a line with the topic you would like to present and your preferred month to get the ball rolling!
Email Alix at email@example.com
Host or Sponsor a Fun at Five
The Chamber is also planning its schedule of monthly networking events for the year. If you are interested in hosting or sponsoring a Fun at Five, contact Alix and she'll give you all the details. Our next opening is March's Fun at Five.
Call or email Alix for more info. 508-347-2761
Free Training for Incumbent Workers!
You spoke and we listened! Quinsigamond Community College's Center for Workforce Development & Continuing Education is pleased to present The Essential Soft Skills Series. The topics have been carefully chosen in response to the feedback we have received by local employers.
Introducing Soft Skills for the Workplace Workshops:
- Essential Business Skills
- Time Management
- Conflict Resolution
- Presenting with Impact
- Communication with Clarity & Impact
- Creative Problem Solving and Decision Making
The Direct Access Grant for Small Business Grant is a Workforce Training Fund program
designed for the business that has 100 or less employees and is in Good Standing with the
Commonwealth. Employers that pay into the Unemployment Fund can qualify and attend for
FREE. Workshops will be offered in various QCC locations.
Come learn about the various Workforce Training Grants and the Soft Skills Workshops Series:
February 11 at 10:00 a.m.
QCC Downtown Campus: 25 Federal Street, Worcester
February 13 at 10:00 a.m.
Central Mass South Chamber: 46 Hall Road, Sturbridge
To register, contact Christine McNally or Eileen Morgan at 508.751.7900 or 508.751.7929
Essential Soft Skills for the Workplace Workshops
Essential Business Skills
Creative Problem Solving and Decision Making
Communicating with Clarity & Impact
Presenting with Impact
Catch Dennis McCurdy on the Airwaves Today!
Dennis McCurdy will be featured on Unity Radio and Facebook Live!
Live Stream: wuty979fm.org
Radio: 97.9 FM in Worcester, MA
Call in: 508-471-5265
Listen, watch, comment and/or call in when Dennis is on Unity Radio LIVE today,
Friday, 1/31, at 1:00 pm.
The show is "Fabulous, Fierce and on Fire Fridays with Friends" and is hosted by Cami Baker, speaker, and author of "Mingle to Millions" and America's Authority on Purpose Leveraged Marketing Campaigns.
"I am super excited to talk about my passion, my purpose, my profession, and life in general," says Dennis. "Hope you'll all watch!"
Cornerstone Bank Makes Donation to Worcester Community Action Council
Pictured here, L to R: Cornerstone Bank President & Treasurer Todd M. Tallman;
WCAC Director of Energy Resources Mary E. Knittle; Cornerstone Bank Chairman & CEO K. Michael Robbins;
and WCAC Director of Development Ellen M. Ganley.
Cornerstone Bank is proud to announce its recent donation of $40,000 to the Worcester Community Action Council (WCAC). This major financial contribution will go toward assisting local residents with home heating costs.
WCAC is a Worcester-based agency for central Massachusetts, dedicated to helping people move toward economic self-sufficiency through programs, partnerships, and advocacy. This donation will support the agency's Emergency Fuel Assistance Fund. Every year, this fund provides critical support to clients who are most vulnerable to high home heating costs and whose needs often extend beyond what they receive in federal assistance.
"WCAC is a vital organization that helps people gain economic self-sufficiency," stated Cornerstone Bank Chairman & CEO K. Michael Robbins. "We're proud to support their mission and the many programs they provide to the community and its residents."
"We are pleased to contribute to such a worthwhile agency that provides critical support to many local individuals and families," added Bank President & Treasurer Todd M. Tallman. "We are committed to helping our neighbors stay warm during the winter season."
The Worcester Community Action Council is the federally-designated community action council agency for central Massachusetts. Each year, they assist over 75,000 people living in Worcester and surrounding towns through a variety of economic self-sufficiency and emergency programs. For more information about the WCAC, visit them online at
or by calling 508-754-1176.
Southbridge Garden Club at Worcester Art Museum
Photos from the 2019 lobby display at the Worcester Art Museum
For the second consecutive year, the Southbridge Garden Club has been invited to design the main entrance lobby space for the Worcester Art Museum's
Flora in Winter exhibit, which was on display from January 23 to January 26, 2020.
This year's theme is Epic Bloom!, which coincides with the exhibit,
Photo Revolution: Andy Warhol to Cindy Sherman. The Southbridge Garden Club will create a colorful and fragrant array that complements the Museum's artistic display.
"We are thrilled to participate in
Flora in Winter at the Worcester Art Museum. Our group has diverse and talented floral designers, artists and home gardeners," said April Frost, Southbridge Garden Club president. "The teamwork, time and effort put into this event by our members has been a rewarding and amazing opportunity to showcase the talents of the club, as well as forge a partnership with the art museum. We appreciate the occasion and venue provided to our group."
Sandra Polanik, public and internal events coordinator, Worcester Art Museum, noted that she is a board member of the Ruth Wells Center for the Arts in Southbridge, which houses the garden club. "Having first-hand knowledge of the stunning artistic work of the Southbridge Garden Club, I felt that this group of designers would be an excellent addition to WAM's highly acclaimed exhibit," she said.
In 2019, the Southbridge Garden Club created a spectacular floral display for
Flora in Winter to coincide with the special exhibition,
Monet's Waterloo Bridge: Vision and Process. The high quality of the design and positive public response prompted the Museum to extend a second invitation.
The non-profit Southbridge Garden Club was established in 1953 to serve the Tri-Community area in sharing an interest in horticulture and expanding knowledge of gardening for the mutual benefit of members and the local communities. In 1984, the Southbridge Garden Club became a member of the Garden Club Federation of Massachusetts. The Club's annual Greens Sale, its only fundraiser, enables the organization to give back financially to local communities through scholarships, educational programs and beautification projects.
Cornerstone Bank Plans for Loan Center in Westborough
Cornerstone Bank announced today [January 15, 2020] its plans to open a Loan Center at 45 Lyman Street, Suite 20 in Westborough, Mass.
The new Loan Center provides easier accessibility for customers in the growing MetroWest area. "We are always looking for ways to meet the growing lending needs of residents," said Scott Auen, Cornerstone Bank SVP of Retail Lending. "Westborough is a vibrant, growing community and is the ideal location for our new Loan Center. As a community-owned bank, we pride ourselves on exceptional customer service, and quick loan decisions."
"This new Loan Center was strategically selected to expand our footprint and enhance our
community banking model," added Bank President and Treasurer Todd Tallman. "Customer relationships will be handled by local, knowledgeable bankers to meet the lending needs of the communities in the area."
This conveniently located Loan Center in Westborough will have a full team of mortgage lenders to meet the local loan demand. The Bank offers full-service banking for their customers' deposit and lending needs at thirteen area locations in central MA.
About Cornerstone Bank:
Cornerstone Bank is an independent, mutual savings bank serving the residents, businesses, and communities throughout Central Massachusetts from offices in Charlton, Holden, Leicester, Rutland, Southbridge, Spencer, Sturbridge, Warren, Webster, and Worcester. Deposits are insured in full by a combination of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Depositors Insurance Fund. The Bank is an Equal Opportunity Employer, Equal Housing Lender, and SBA Preferred Lender. For more information, visit online at
, on Facebook or call 800-939-9103.
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?
*WE ARE NOW OFFERING REVERSE MORTGAGE LENDING*
CONTACT KRISTEN WALTHER
LEARN MORE BY VISITING US AT
Please share this information with your friends and colleagues who may have an interest!
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 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
Creative Writing and Publishing Workshop
with Ed Londergan
March 15, 10:00am-3:30pm
Salem Cross Inn
The workshop will cover:
How to get started
Story structure, pace and flow
Creation of atmosphere/location
Creating authentic dialogue
Holding a reader's interest
Overcoming writer's block
How's and why's of publishing
Finding an agent
Registration is required and must be to Ed by March 7. It is limited to 20 people.
Price is $95 and lunch is included.
Call 508-864-8685 to register.
A great way to earn money AND be involved in the Electoral process!
POSITION: EXIT POLLSTER(s) for the Primary Election
LOCATION(s): Webster & all over Massachusetts!
DUTIES: Pass out surveys, tally and call in results on Election Day. In preparation, brief training and rehearsal calls must be completed before the Election.
DATE: Tuesday, March 3, 2020
TIME: From 6:45AM to shortly after 8:00PM
PAY: $275 for the day
CONTACT: If you are interested or have any questions, email Elena at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please include name, phone number, and location in any emails. I'll be happy to answer any questions, and will provide a more detailed description via telephone.
EXIT POLLSTERS must be responsible, punctual and polite, with own transportation.
PAID PROMPTLY after returned materials are processed.
Saturday, February 29, 2020, 9-5:30pm
Location: E2E 79 Main St., Ware, MA 01082
$140 per person.
Don't miss out! Our ServSafe class is running soon - make sure you reserve your seat.
This is a 6 hour instructional class and a 2 hour exam.
You must reserve your spot for this class.
Quaboag Valley Community Development & Business Assistance Corporation
"In seed-time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy."