In this issue, Feb. 28-March 5

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David J. Rushford, city clerk, takes the term public service quite seriously.

Fred Hurlbrink Jr. / Worcester Sun

David J. Rushford, city clerk, takes the term public service quite seriously.

Q&A with City Clerk David J. Rushford on elections, public service and making gay marriage history |  When it comes to institutional memory, it would be difficult to imagine a more impressive mental scrapbook than the one cultivated by a man whose City Hall tenure has spanned five decades. But Rushford’s time as a municipal employee has been about much more than vital records and registering voters. With 35 years in the clerk’s office behind him and Super Tuesday barrelling down the Pike, we stepped up to the window with a few questions.


Angelo Padin

Courtesy of Angelo Padin

Angelo Padin, president of WooCutz and Simplicity Tech

Angelo Padin is a young entrepreneur on the cutting edge |  “Too many barbers who own their own businesses still live in the Stone Age,” said Padin, president and founder of WooCutz, a small firm in Worcester that advises mom-and-pop barbershops on how to effectively use social media platforms. “I want to help them out.” Bronislaus B. Kush gets the straight buzz on a former Marine bent on making a difference.


Sina-cism: Irrational fears snaking through Bay State |  “In a less ignorant and media-driven society, [a state plan to relocate endangered snakes to a remote island] would have drawn the interest of mostly naturalists and scientists, with a few hikers and the general public giving it perhaps a passing thought. Alas, we don’t live in that society.” Which is a win-win for Chris Sinacola and our members.


What good can come of kindergarten testing? You mean, besides an entire educational foundation?

Flickr / Alberto G.

What good can come of kindergarten testing? You mean, besides an entire educational foundation?

Editorial: Testing and teaching |  The School Committee, responding to some teachers and others who say kindergartners are being tested too much, has agreed to study the issue. We say: Careful; the stakes are high in kindergarten. Standardized testing doesn’t have all the answers, but it is a valuable tool helping teachers help kids — particularly in the lower grades.


Feb28SunSpot_tease

Sun Spots with Hitch [Vol. 36]: The Oscar goes to … |  It’s award season, that special time to celebrate the brightest of our stars — who apparently don’t get enough attention the rest of the year. Hitch, being the man of the people he is, thought, “Well, damn, Hitch, it’s time the little guy got his due!” So, then, a very special Oscar presentation from us to you.


Part 11 — New Hope, More Troubles and a Gift |  “We moved with the rest of the crowd, like [the] river carrying debris during a storm. We were not far from the so-called gift. I felt tired. I was walking slowly and my knee started swelling up. I started chatting with my brother [and began to tell] him a story about a teacher.” And then Augustine Kanjia’s long and winding journey to Worcester took another incredible turn.


Up Next: Dual concerns as school officials seek superintendent, budget answers |  With budget season hard on the horizon laying low under a gloomy statewide fiscal forecast, the School Committee and administration would have plenty on their plate. But then, the selection of a new superintendent is both paramount and imminent. So, yeah, lots to do. Who’s prioritizing what as decision times beckon? Patrick Sargent reports.


John MorelloLocal Crowdfund: From the dark local performer John Morello takes a shot at providing hope |  He experienced two deaths in his family by the age of 12, his parents divorced, he was exposed to illicit drugs and didn’t finish high school. Despite these close encounters with the wrong path, local entertainer John Morello took the road less travelled and is turning his experiences into life lessons for high-risk children.


Worcester Weekly: Community race dialog continues + 5 more things to do, Feb. 28-March 5 |  A city panel tasked with promoting inclusivity plans a community meeting to serve as an update to the well-intentioned but wildly (and ironically) divisive Department of Justice race dialogs over the summer. Why so serious? Well, we had to balance out all the fun you’ll have the rest of the week once you’ve clicked your way to day-planner Nirvana. Get in there!


New in Free to Read

whiskeytangologoLocal Business Spotlight: Whiskey Tango
Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: Two experienced businessmen are preparing to open a bar on Park Avenue aimed at the college crowd. One of three establishments coming to Worcester this winter with whiskey on the brain — or the marquee, at least — this one is a little bit the same, a little bit different.

The Capaldi family, at last year's Bella's Ball

Courtesy Why Me

The Capaldi family, at last year’s Bella’s Ball

Sun Shine: ‘Why Me’ family gives back
The Capaldis are among many who have benefited from the caring and comforts of home offered by Why Me in Worcester and its Sherry’s House, a temporary residence for families affected by childhood cancer. The annual Bella’s Ball, in honor of their daughter, will raise money to help others facing the harrowing ordeal.

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