Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Florence Bank and the city of Springfield are working together to upgrade the basketball court at Greenleaf Community Center in time for summer, school vacation, and neighborhood pickup games.

Work to repave and paint the court began earlier in May and is expected to be complete before school ends in June. Two new hoops and backboards will also be installed.

“We are thrilled to have this project underway because we know the children in the neighborhood will benefit this summer — and for many summers to come,” said Florence Bank President and CEO John Heaps Jr.

Nearly two years ago, Florence Bank opened its first branch in Hampden County at 1010 Union St. in West Springfield, and last fall, a second branch opened at 1444 Allen St.

“It’s important that we show the community we care about the things that are important to them,” Heaps said. “We like to be good neighbors.”

Florence Bank and the city each contributed $15,000 to the project. A celebratory event will be held on Tuesday, June 18 from 6 to 8 p.m., with a rain date of June 19.

Daily News

SPRINGFIELD — Starting today, May 22, White Lion Brewing will expand on its highly recognized White Lion Wednesday pop-up concept which was recognized in 2017 by Food and Wine magazine as a beer garden to visit. This year’s White Lion Summer Beer Garden is sponsored by MassLive and will operate on the corner of Bridge and Main streets each Wednesday through Friday, 4 to 9 p.m., and Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. 

“Springfield continues to witness an uptick in general attractions,” General Manager Ray Berry said. “There is a lot of creativity taking place in every corner of the city. The company expanded White Lion Wednesday due to customer demand and requests for a permanent outdoor venue, in turn allowing us to hire 10 seasonal employees. We tied in some well-known proprietors from across New England to add substance and impact; you have to evolve and bring new ideas into the fold. What worked last year rarely works in today’s ‘what’s new’ consumer-driven market; it will get stale and old very quick.”

This week’s events offer a glimpse of what to expect all summer. Today features the Standing Bear Band with Tom Shields and Cousins Maine Lobster Food Truck; Thursday features DJ Anomally and Cousins Maine Lobster Food Truck; Friday features the Buddy McEarns Band, Blaze, and Johnny’s Hot Dog House Food Truck; and Saturday is Family Fun Day, with food by Elegant Affairs.

Follow White Lion Brewing on all social-media platforms for ongoing updates. Interested vendors, community organizations, and businesses are encouraged to reach out at [email protected] for more information.

Daily News

WESTFIELD — Today, May 22, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Massachusetts will gather to recognize the best of the best. The annual Youth of the Year Celebration will take place at Tekoa Country Club in Westfield beginning at 6 p.m. This event, sponsored by the 99 Restaurants, has become an anticipated night to celebrate the local Youths of the Year, the most prestigious recognition a club member can achieve.

The 2019 Youths of the Year are: Megan Collins (Boys & Girls Club of the Berkshires), Daishany Miller (Boys & Girls Club of Chicopee), Noellena Paez (Boys & Girls Club Family Center), Adam Wehner (Ludlow Boys & Girls Club), Sarah Alnuaimi (Boys & Girls Club of West Springfield), Adriana Seymour (Boys & Girls Club of Westfield), Karina Lopez (Boys & Girls Club of Greater Holyoke), and Ibrahima Keita (Boys & Girls Club of Springfield).

Daily News

GREENFIELD — Michael Tucker, president and CEO of Greenfield Cooperative Bank, announced that the board of directors approved the promotions of Lisa Kmetz to senior vice president – Retail and BSA/security officer, and Michael Turley to senior vice president and controller.

Kmetz has 38 years of experience, having started at the former Bank of New England – West. She also spent time at the former United Savings Bank before joining Northampton Cooperative Bank in 1998. She is responsible for managing the branch network for the bank and its security functions as well as coordinating the bank’s charitable-giving efforts. She earned her associate degree in business administration from Holyoke Community College and completed a certificate program in computer information systems from Western New England University. She is a volunteer board member of the Lathrop Community.

Turley has 39 years of experience in banking and finance. He joined Greenfield Cooperative Bank in September 2013. He is a graduate of Union College in New York with a degree in economics and attended the MBA program at Western New England University. He is active in the community as a long-time member of the Buckland Finance Committee and several other committees within Buckland.