Wicked Wickets in Worthington

Worthington’s Halloween Celebration

"This is a chance for people to come down to see all the kids in their costumes," said Janine Modestow, Recreation Committee member.(Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

This year, the town of Worthington, MA will celebrate Halloween on Saturday, Oct. 30, and offer a new twist, Wicked Wickets, as well as scarecrow-making, a carved pumpkin walkway, a deejay, and an opportunity for residents to give out candy on the R.H. Conwell Community Education grounds. The event is sponsored by the Recreation Committee.

The fun begins on Friday, Oct. 29, with a free scarecrow-making class at 3 p.m. at the R.H.Conwell Community Education Center (147 Huntington Rd.). At that time, residents can also drop off scarecrows made at home to be judged at the school on Saturday.

On Saturday, Oct. 30, residents are invited to bring carved pumpkins to either the Town Hall at 160 Huntington Road or the center. The pumpkins will be used to mark a path between the two buildings, which are situated diagonally across from each other. Everyone is invited to participate in decorating the Town Hall, starting at 3 p.m.

Residents who wish to hand out candy at the center may arrive and set up at 4 p.m.

“This is a chance for people to come down to see all the kids in their costumes,” said Janine Modestow, Recreation Committee member. The candy handout will give residents who live on the outskirts of town and who are not often visited by trick-or-treaters the chance to join in the fun.

At 5 p.m., townwide trick-or-treating begins. Children can stop by the center and continue through town. Residents who wish to have trick-or-treaters stop at their home are asked to signal this by leaving their lights on.

Teenagers are invited to create a wicket, with a scary theme – or not – to play Wicked Wickets, a combination of haunted croquet and miniature golf that will be played on the Town Hall side lawn, weather permitting. Relying on imagination, the wicket can be carved out of pumpkin or a pile of wood with a space large enough for a croquet ball to roll through.

Then, at 6 p.m. residents will play Wicked Wickets to the sounds of a performing deejay. Prizes for scarecrows will be given out. The Boy Scouts will serve up free hot dogs and burgers, and the Recreation Committee will provide cider, doughnuts and coffee. The cleanup party for the day’s event begins at 8 p.m.

Community Education Center Forming in Worthington

RH Conwell Community Education Center
A Homeschooling Co-Op in Worthington

Parents of R.H Conwell Students are invited to learn more about an option to start a Community Education Center in the town of Worthington, MA this fall.  A group of parents and town members will be hosting a meeting to discuss their goal to provide a local, community directed educational experience for Worthington area elementary students (preschool-6th).

  • The meeting will be at the Worthington Town Hall on Saturday, February 27th at 10am.

RH Conwell Community Education Center

Our goal is to provide a local, community directed educational experience for Worthington area elementary students. We will focus on elementary education in the tradition of the school that just closed. To make next year feel as comfortable to parents and students as they feel this year is a primary goal. Community members and parents will be directly involved in the educational process. This could be a transition program to a new public school or a program we wish to continue for the foreseeable future.

We will follow the education laws of Massachusetts by organizing as a homeschooling cooperative. This means that before the school year starts, each parent and child meets with Conwell’s education specialist and develops an education plan. The plan can be a standard grade level plan or individualized for each student. Families send the plans to the child’s local school district which will then certify the child as a homeschooler. School districts can ask for more information, but have very little right to deny the homeschooling plans.

Depending on the number of families involved, there will be at least two paid staff members; one coordinator and one educational specialist who will have a teaching degree. We envision serving children from kindergarten to sixth grade. Volunteers will work under the direction of the educational specialist to allow for small groups and individual attention. We are assuming that the center would be open during the traditional school day. Based on families needs, children could attend part time or full time.

Daily Structure
Mornings will be spent on subjects such as math and language arts, either individually or in small groups. Afternoons will be spent applying skills to in depth projects or field trips. We plan to collaborate with local organizations and individuals to offer a variety of courses. Meals could provide an opportunity to apply math skills to planning and preparation.

This program will have costs that are not yet known. There will be expenses for the use of the school, material costs, salaries, insurance etc. We are planning to raise funds and apply for grants to lower costs. We also will be working with the Lewis’s It Takes a Community Foundation. Volunteer services could be traded for some expenses.

Other Programs
We are hoping to use the school as a hub for other community activities such as before and after school childcare and preschool. This would also allow local children who attend other schools to remain connected with the community. We envision the school as a place where intergenerational groups could collaborate.


  • Leona Arthen – Worthington library director
  • Debbie Carnes – longtime school aide and volunteer, certified guidance councilor
  • Valerie Casterline- lifelong Worthington resident, professional working parent
  • Vanessa Lewis – school volunteer and fundraising coordinator
  • Kathy MacLean- retired fourth grade teacher at RH Conwell
  • Richard Mansfield –former school board member
  • Michele Sawyer- parent and school volunteer
  • Susan Warner- child care provider
  • Judith Williams- retired fourth grade teacher and principle at RH Conwell

Keep it Local: 2010 Hilltown Business Directory

Hilltown Business Directory to List 350 Local Businesses

The annual Hilltown Business Directory, published both in print and online by the Hilltown Community Development Corporation (HCDC), a community non-profit in Chesterfield, MA, is preparing its expanded 2010 edition.

The Hilltown Business Directory will list 350 local businesses in 20 towns, by category, by name, and by town. This 160 page reference book will be used all year by local residents. The Directory makes it easy for residents to support their neighbors by using locally available products and services, thereby strengthening the hilltown economy and preserving and creating local jobs.

The 2010 Directory will be mailed in early January to every one of the 13,000 households in 20 towns, including

  • Ashfield in Franklin County;
  • Chesterfield, Cummington, Goshen, Huntington, Middlefield, Plainfield, Westhampton, Williamsburg and Worthington in Hampshire County;
  • Blandford, Chester, Montgomery and Russell in Hampden County;
  • Becket, Hinsdale, Otis, Peru, Washington and Windsor in Berkshire County.

The online version of the Hilltown Business Directory is available all year at www.hilltowncdc.org.

Listings and ads must be received by September 25. More information, and space reservation forms, are available at www.hilltowncdc.org, or by calling 413-296-4536.  Read the rest of this entry »

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