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Wintersession Classes at HCC

Jan. 3-14: Registration is open for Wintersession classes at Holyoke Community College (HCC), offering new and returning students — as well as students from other colleges home on holiday break — the opportunity to earn a semester’s worth of credits for one class in just 10 days. Students can earn up to four credits by taking Wintersession classes in a wide variety of academic areas: anthropology, communication, criminal justice, economics, engineering, environmental science, geography, law, management, marketing, mathematics, radiology, social science, and sociology. Courses are being offered both on campus and online. Starting Jan. 3, students must be vaccinated against COVID-19 to attend classes on campus. Students must submit proof of their vaccination status before being allowed to register for on-campus classes. Students who plan to register only for online or remote classes do not have to submit proof of COVID-19 vaccination. To enroll for a Wintersession class, visit hcc.edu/wintersession. The registration deadline is Dec. 31.


ArtsHub Virtual Summit

Jan. 10-14: The ArtsHub Virtual Summit: “How to Recover and Thrive” welcomes emerging and established artists, performers, arts managers, and those in creative fields to join in a week-long series of virtual interactive workshops, training, and networking sessions. The summit, designed to provide tools to help those working in creative fields recover from the disruption created by the pandemic and learn how to position their business to thrive as the economy recovers, will present daily sessions with guest speakers at 10 a.m., noon, and 6 p.m. A full schedule of events, session descriptions, presenter bios, and links to register can be found at www.umass.edu/aes/artshub. The fee for the ArtsHub Virtual Summit is $35 for the early-bird registration (before Jan. 4), and $55 thereafter. The fee provides access to all sessions and online access through January. The ArtsHub was made possible by an initial grant from the Massachusetts Office of Business Development and additional support from the Community Foundation of Western Mass.


‘Addressing Conflict in Schools Using Non-violent Strategies’

Jan. 17: Western New England University (WNE) School of Law’s Center for Social Justice will present “Addressing Conflict in Schools Using Non-violent Strategies” in conjunction with the Greater Springfield Campaign at 7 p.m. Executive Director of Nonviolent Schools RI Robin Wildman will lead this discussion. Visit bit.ly/WNEMLKDAY2021 to register for this virtual Zoom event. Wildman has been a senior-level Kingian Nonviolence practitioner and teacher for 20 years and a public-school teacher for 28 years (recently retired). Her current role with Nonviolent Schools RI is a result of her desire to train those who work in the field of education in Kingian Nonviolence so that they can work towards institutionalizing the philosophy and conflict-reconciliation strategies, thus transforming the climate and culture of their schools. She has conducted workshops, given lectures, and trained hundreds of adults and children in methods to address and reconcile conflict used by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She is the author of a Kingian Nonviolence curriculum used nationally and internationally, as well as a post-training reflection journal. Wildman has worked closely for 20 years with her mentor and the honorary board chair of Nonviolent Schools RI, noted civil-rights leader Bernard LaFayette Jr., who worked with King. She believes giving students and school staff the tools to understand and address conflict will significantly reduce school violence in all its forms and lead to a more just environment in which students can thrive and achieve their full potential.


YPS, Ad Club Mix & Mingle

Jan. 20: The Young Professional Society of Greater Springfield (YPS) and the Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts will host an annual Mix & Mingle membership event to support young professionals and encourage them to become more involved and invested in their local communities. The Mix & Mingle membership event will take place from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at Paper City Bar & Grill, 241 Whiting Farms Road, Holyoke. The Springfield YPS is an organization built to exchange ideas, share common interests, and cultivate its membership to serve as the Pioneer Valley’s leaders of tomorrow. YPS aims to engage the younger demographic in distinct areas such as business and career development, networking, cultural involvement, community involvement, educational opportunities, volunteerism, recreational and social activities, and more. The Ad Club of Western Massachusetts is the premier organization for all marketing and communications professionals in Western Mass. and Northern Connecticut. The club offers its members the ability to advance and enrich the advertising community by acting as a catalyst for idea exchange, professional development, and creative energy. Members can register for the event at www.eventbrite.com/e/mix-mingle-registration-219246591457.


Unify Against Bullying Annual Fashion Show

Oct. 26: High-school students of all shapes, sizes, styles, ethnicity, and physical abilities from schools in Western Mass. and Northern Conn. will strut their stuff at a fashion show celebrating true diversity. In this unprecedented time, the Unify Against Bullying team has decided to stream the event free on Facebook Live for all to enjoy. One addition this year is an online auction where individuals can bid on prizes from the comfort of their home. The organization will also accept donations during the event to support their mission and the youth they serve. Delaney’s Market is offering a Unify meal package to order, pay for, and pick up curbside at one of four locations to make the event a party with family and friends. For information on streaming, sponsorship, and program advertising, visit www.unifyagainstbullying.org or call (413) 304-0668.


‘Caring for an Aging Loved One in Time of COVID-19’

Oct. 28-30: Linda Manor Assisted Living will sponsor a free seminar, “Caring for an Aging Loved One in the Time of COVID-19 and Beyond.” Sessions will be held as outdoor, socially distanced events under a tent on Wednesday, Oct. 28 and Thursday, Oct. 29 at 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. each day. For those who prefer to participate from the comfort of their home, a session will be held Friday, Oct. 30 at 2 p.m. as an online webinar. Each session will be 60 to 90 minutes in length. The sessions will be presented by Joan Roche, a board-certified clinical nurse specialist in gerontological nursing. She has 40 years of professional experience serving and advocating for older adults. She has been a gerontological clinical nurse specialist for a major healthcare system, an associate professor at the UMass College of Nursing, a healthcare consultant, and family caregiver her entire adult life. As some experts believe that we may be living with the COVID-19 pandemic well into next year, Roche will provide straightforward information and helpful advice on how best to manage the many challenges that can come with caring for an aging loved one during this time. Topics include how to protect yourself and others from COVID-19, seasonal flu, pneumonia, and the common cold this winter; the latest advances in the development of an effective COVID-19 vaccine; understanding the difference between assisted living, memory care, and a nursing home; how to recognize the signs of deteriorating health or frailty in a loved one; how to help a loved one deal with isolation or anxiety; practical tips for dementia caregivers; and little-known ways to help pay for senior housing, including benefits for veterans and veterans’ survivors. Linda Manor Assisted Living is located at 345 Haydenville Road, Leeds. To register for one of the seminars, visit www.rsvplindamanor.org, or call (413) 588-3316. Reservations are required. Space is limited for the in-person events to allow for proper social distancing. All in-person attendees will receive a complete, reheatable meal to take home.


‘What Is the Black Agenda in America Today?’

Oct. 29: Western New England University (WNEU) School of Law will present a virtual discussion titled “What is the Black Agenda in America Today?” from 6 to 7:30 p.m. as part of the Wellen Davison Speaker Series. Entrepreneur, activist, and author Elaine Brown will be discussing recent events involving policing brutality and the deaths of unarmed black citizens. Western New England University President Robert Johnson will provide the welcome address, and Professor of Law Bridgette Baldwin will serve as moderator. Brown is executive director for the Michael Lewis Legal Defense Committee, the former minister of information and chairman of the Black Panther Party, and author of A Taste of Power: A Black Woman’s Story and the Condemnation of Little B. She is also the CEO of Oakland & the World Enterprises, a nonprofit organization dedicated to launching and sustaining for-profit businesses for ownership by formerly incarcerated and other people facing extreme barriers to economic survival. Brown attended Temple University, UCLA, Mills College, and Southwestern University School of Law and has lectured at colleges and universities around the world. This 90-minute event is free and open to the public. For more information, click ‘Learn More’ under ‘Center for Social Justice’ at wne.edu.


‘The Human Side of Innovation’

Oct. 29: Bay Path University announced the launch of a monthly webinar series bringing the concept of ‘leading-edge thinking’ to a deep examination of the future of higher education. The series will open Thursday, Oct. 29 with a presentation titled “The Human Side of Innovation: Finding Joy and Meaning in Everyday Life and Work.” Presented by Elaine Dundon, bestselling author and founder of the Global Meaning Institute, it will explore the search for meaning in the context of widespread change and discuss how innovation can bring us forward as we embark upon a new normal for post-pandemic life. The webinar series was developed by Bay Path’s Center for Higher Education Leadership and Innovative Practices (CHELIP) to further the discourse and confront the challenges surrounding the upheaval of traditional higher education. The series is open to all. Each webinar is an hour long, with future presentations looking at topics such as student-retention challenges, racial injustice, and transforming the learning process. For more information, visit baypath.edu.


Boo Bash

Oct. 31: In cooperation with the office of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno and Colebrook Realty Services Inc., United Way of Pioneer Valley will host Boo Bash, a drive-thru, socially distant trick-or-treating event between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the TD Bank parking lot in downtown Springfield. Families with children 12 and under, accompanied by an adult, are welcome to attend, and 3,000 bags of candy, toys, and information on community resources will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Everyone must remain in their vehicles to ensure safety. More information is available at uwpv.org/boo-bash, and donations can be made at uwpv.org/donate.


Real-estate Licensing Course

Nov. 2 to Dec. 10: The Realtor Assoc. of Pioneer Valley will sponsor a 40-hour, 14-class, sales licensing course to help individuals prepare for the Massachusetts real-estate salesperson license exam. Tuition is $400 and includes the book and materials. For an application, call (413) 785-1328 or visit rapv.com. The association has taken all necessary COVID-19 sanitary precautions in accordance with the CDC and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health guidelines to ensure the safety of its students. Classes are limited to 18 students.


A+ Awards Show

Nov. 12: The Amherst Area Chamber of Commerce 2020 A+ Awards Show will be held virtually and broadcast live from Hadley Farms Meeting House, with PeoplesBank serving as presenting sponsor. Each year, the chamber gives A+ Awards to individuals and organizations that enrich the life of the community through their work in education, business, and civic engagement in Amherst, Belchertown, Hadley, Leverett, Pelham, Shutesbury, Sunderland, and the Pioneer Valley as a whole. This year’s honorees include Betsey McInnis (Lifetime Achievement Award), Phoenix Fruit Farm of Belchertown (Leader in Innovation Award), Kestrel Land Trust of Amherst (Leader in Sustainability Award), Ash Crawford, director of Operations at Amherst Coffee (Young Professional Award), Mercedes-Benz of Springfield (Community Service Award), and Lisa Eugin of Encharter Insurance (Chamber MVP). New this year is the COVID Hero, a nonprofit or individual who provided essential support services, went above and beyond, and took initiative to put others before self to benefit the greater good. Live voting will take place to choose a winner from the following organizations and individuals: Amherst Survival Center, Arizona Pizza, Bistro 63, Mary Beth Ogulewicz of the Amherst Senior Center, Rebekah Demling of ARPS PGO, and Wheelhouse Catering. Also new this year, David Jeffway, owner of Sharper Vision, will create video tributes for each awardee. A virtual access pass to the view the live awards show costs $20, or a $50 VIP package includes the virtual access pass, a $25 Amherst-area gift certificate, a hard copy of the 2020 A+ Awards Journal, and sponsor gifts. Registration is open, and A+ Award dinner sponsorships and ads are still available for the virtual extravaganza; for more information, visit amherstarea.com. E-mail Pazmany at [email protected] with any inquiries.


Bright Nights at Forest Park

Nov. 25 to Jan. 3: Bright Nights at Forest Park will take place this year. Spirit of Springfield and the city of Springfield have developed protocols to provide a safe and festive event that has been a holiday tradition since 1995. They will be instituted during setup, breakdown, and during the event, and include masks, regular cleaning, online ticketing, and more. Restrooms will be for emergency use only, and the usual bustling gift shop, amusement rides, horse-drawn wagon and carriage rides, and visits and supper with Santa will not be available. This will help keep all visitors safe and socially distanced in their vehicles during the experience. Bright Nights at Forest Park is three miles of a unique holiday experience featuring more than 675,000 lights and iconic displays like Seuss Land, Everett Barney Mansion, Toy Land, Happy Holidays, Springfield, and so many more. It generates $15 million in economic impact annually and has created a lifetime of family memories in its 25-year history. It also promises to be one of the safest events, with families contained in their cars. Admission will be $23 per car weeknights, weekdays, and holidays. Discounted tickets will be available at participating Big Y World Class Markets for $16.50. Due to bus-capacity limitations in Massachusetts, admission for buses has been reduced to $100 for buses with capacity of more than 30 people. Vehicles with seating from 17 to 30 people will be charged $50 for admission.

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