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Academic Decathlon looking for volunteers

Rhode Island Academic Decathlon is actively recruiting volunteers for their Sunday, March 10, 2019 state competition. Volunteers evaluate the speech and interview skills of high school students or assist with exams and event management.

The competition is hosted by CCRI in Warwick, and most volunteers serve from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Training is provided on the day of the event. Sixteen teams from high schools across the state are competing. For more information on the RI Academic Decathlon, visit www.acdec.net, or email frank.lenox@acdec.net or jen.randall@acdec.net.

Warm Thy Neighbor

The Rhode Island Good Neighbor Energy Fund (GNEF) announces that its 33rd annual “Warm Thy Neighbor” campaign, which helps Rhode Island households in financial difficulty with the payment of their energy expenses, is now underway. The United Way of Rhode Island, the administrator of the Fund, has received seed money from the Fund’s sponsoring energy companies – National Grid, Ocean State Power, Pascoag Utility District, Petro Home Services and RISEC LP – so that eligible households can receive assistance immediately. The Good Neighbor Energy Fund’s 2018-2019 campaign goal is to raise $350,000 and help more than 750 households.

In addition to the sponsoring energy companies, the Good Neighbor Energy Fund campaign relies on the generosity of individuals, families, local corporations and community organizations for support. Yellow donation envelopes are enclosed with energy bills through February.  Those interested in donating to the Fund can text “WARM” to 91999 on their mobile phone, send a check payable to “Good Neighbor Energy Fund” to United Way of Rhode Island, 50 Valley Street, Providence, RI 02909 or visit www.rhodeislandgoodneighbor.org.

United Way of Rhode Island encourages those households in need of energy assistance to visit their local Community Action Program (CAP) agency to determine household eligibility for the Fund which is based on total household income not exceeding 300 percent of the federal poverty level. For example, a household of four is eligible for the Fund if its annual income does not exceed $75,300 while a household of six cannot exceed $101,220. Grants to individual households are determined by fuel type and need and will not exceed $650 per heating season.

Since its establishment in 1986, the Rhode Island Good Neighbor Energy Fund has raised over $14.2 million and helped over 45,500 families in need of temporary energy assistance. For more information about the Good Neighbor Energy Fund or how to receive assistance, contact either the United Way 2-1-1 in Rhode Island help line or a local Community Action Program (CAP) agency.

School Vacation Programs and more at Mohr

The Marian J. Mohr Memorial Library, located at 1 Memorial Ave. in Johnston, has announced both Children’s Events and Vacation events.

Storytime, which includes stories, songs, rhymes and puppets for kids and their caregivers will run on Tuesdays for babies to 2 years old at 10:30 a.m. and Wednesdays for 3 to 5 years old at 10:30 a.m. from Feb. 26 to March 27. No need to register.

Their Lego Club is held every second Thursday of the month through June from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. They have more than 10, 000 LEGO bricks donated by LEGO Systems.

The library will be closed on Monday, Feb. 18 in observance of President’s Day.

Saturday Family Crafts is held every Saturday through June. Drop-in anytime between 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. and enjoy several self-directed projects for kids and parents to do together. There is no need to register and this is not appropriate for children under 3 as small parts might present a hazard.

Science Club will meet on March 6 at 6:30 p.m. Let’s stack and drink (layers of fruit juice) to investigate how to make liquid denser and thicker and witness the process of diffusion. Grades K-3. Families welcome. Please register.

Vacation Programs are as follows:

On Feb. 19 at 10:30 a.m. you can Sing Along with Mr. Rowland—listen to family favorites and sing and dance with shakers. All ages with a caregiver.

On both Tuesday, Feb. 19 and Friday, Feb. 22 from 1 to 5 p.m. Penguins, snowmen, polar bears and more. Several self-directed projects for kids and grown-ups to do together. Ages 5 and up. (Not appropriate for young children as small parts might present a hazard.)

Pete The Cat Storytime – stories, songs, fingerplay and a craft for children ages 3 and up with a caregiver. No need to register. This will take place on Feb. 20 at 10:30 a.m.

On Feb 20 at 2:30 p.m., there will be Dinosaurs Galore – Play a game to identify dinosaurs, make bone pasta art, decorate dinosaur feet and join in a dino song and dance. Grades K-3. Please register.

On Feb. 21 at 6:30 p.m. there will be a Magic Show. Bjorn The Magician will entertain families with a show full of nonstop comedy and magic. Free tickets will be available starting on Tuesday, Feb. 19 while supplies last. This program is sponsored by a legislative grant provided by Sen. Frank Lombardi III.

Bowling for Animals

On Feb. 24, Defenders of Animals will host a night of bowling fundraiser at Town Hall Bowling Lanes, located at 1463 Atwood Ave. from 2 to 4 p.m. For a $20 donation, you will receive two hours of bowling, a pizza and pitcher of soda for each lane. Call Defenders of Animals at 461-1922 or send an email to them to Dennis Tabella at dennis@defendersofanimals.org for reservations.

Statewide Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours

On March 26, the Statewide Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours on March 26 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Rhodes on the Pawtuxet, 60 Rhodes Place, Cranston. Chamber members and non-members are invited to attend. Don't miss this once a year opportunity to network with hundreds of business professionals from throughout the state. The event will feature more than 120 display tables and attendees can enjoy food provided by Russell Morin Fine Catering while making business connections that will last. Display tables are available for Chamber members only. For more information, contact your local Chamber of Commerce.

Johnston Historical Society

The Johnston Historical Society museum barn is open Tuesdays from 9 to 11am and 6:30 to 8:30pm; Thursdays, 2 to 5 p.m.; or by appointment, for those who would like to visit the museum or examine the society's collection of printed materials. Just in case, call ahead to confirm they are there. Dues are $20 per year for an individual, $30 per year for a family (two adults and children under 18) membership.

The purpose of the JHS is to identify, preserve and promote the history of our town. It is located at 101 Putnam Pike in Johnston and can be reached by calling 231-3380. Their next scheduled meeting is Feb. 27 at 7 p.m. when Ray Wolf will give a talk related to his latest book, Rhode Island's Old Cars Today: 1905-1949.

Eco-Depot coming in February

Resource Recovery invites Rhode Island residents to safely dispose of their household hazardous waste (anything labeled with a skull and crossbones, or words like 'toxic', 'poison', 'flammable', 'combustible', etc.) on Saturday, February 16 from 8 a.m. to noon at Resource Recovery located at 65 Shun Pike in Johnston. This Eco-Depot is available to Rhode Island residents only, and to help reduce time spent in line, appointments should be made in advance. To make an appointment for the collection, visit www.ecodepotri.org or call 942-1430 x241.

Mohr Library Genealogy Group Meetings

Marian J. Mohr Memorial Library hosts a Genealogy Group on the second Wednesday of each month at 4:30 p.m. The Library has yearly subscriptions to Ancestry.com and New England Historical Genealogical Society databases (NEHGS) on all library computers.

The Library also publishes a monthly newsletter outlining upcoming program details and includes tips for searching. Former programs include field trips to the State Archive and Swan Point Cemetery, as well as speakers on cemeteries, medallions found on gravestones, how to search for a nationality, and much more.

Meetings are open to all. Join avid ancestral sleuths, learn tips from others. All nationalities discussed. For more information, call 231-4980 or email info@mohrlibrary.org; www.mohrlibrary.org.

Book Sales

Members of the Friends plan and run book sales and carry out other fundraising activities to allow Mohr Library to increase services and programs. The Friends welcome new members who are willing to support either through donations, membership dues, or through volunteering their time. To find out more, contact them, or call the library director at 231-4980 (press 7).

There is an ongoing book sale in the lower level hall across from the meeting room. The Friends also hold larger sales two or three times a year. Great selections at great prices include hard cover and paperback books, fiction and non-fiction, for adults, children, and young adults. Most prices range from $.25 to $2. The Friends are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, with proceeds from fundraising supporting library programs and services.

Donations of gently used books are appreciated and can be left at the library's main desk during library hours. Receipts for tax purposes are available.

Did You Know?

The first Valentine’s Day cards were handmade with ribbons and lace. During 1847, Ester Howland of Worcester, Massachusetts, began the mass printing of Valentine’s Day cards. Since then, the practice of gifting a card to a loved one became popular. In today’s world, other gifts are also given to those who are smitten with each other or who care for each other. Gifts can include a special dinner, a perfectly chosen card, a special bouquet of flowers or any special love from the heart. Only one’s imagination is needed in fulfilling the love for this day. (Source: Valentine Fun Facts)

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