Things are Ducky at Stonewood School
In May, the Stonewood School in Hudson began the process of hatching duck eggs. The eggs remained in an incubator for several weeks and on June 4 eight adorable ducklings were born. The ducks remained at the school for two weeks. The children and their parents enjoyed visiting with the ducks and watching their development. The ducks have now found a home on a local farm.
Hudson Recreation Summer Program Underway
by Sue LaRoche
“Rain, rain go away, come again some other day, little Johnnie wants to play!” The kids of Hudson must have been chanting collectively Sunday night as the rain did hold off for the opening of the summer recreation program at the Community Center on Monday, June 26. Recreation Director Dave Yates was on hand along with Summer Program Director Shawn O’Donaghue to welcome over 300 kids (ages 6 - 14) to the program. “We had over 300 kids pre register for this program and I think nearly 100 signed up today” related O’Donaghue. The building and surrounding parking lot at the Community Center (formerly Lions Hall) was abuzz with activity by 9:20 a.m. Many parents stood in line to sign their children up for a rollerskating field trip tomorrow; one of many field trips scheduled for the summer participants.
This is the second summer that the Recreation Department has had use of the Community Center. In the past, the Recreation Center on Oakwook Street was used. However, since the program has continued to grow, it became unsafe to house that many kids in the smaller facility. When the Town converted Lions Hall into the Community Center, it gave another option for the summer program to expand and continue to offer this service to the youth of the town. The independent group of senior citizens, who usually use the facility on Wednesday and Thursdays, has temporarily re-located to the VFW hall on Bockes Road for the nine weeks that the program is in session. As one parent stated, “thank you seniors for being unselfish and allowing the kids to use this facility.”
Continuing with tradition, the summer program offers a variety of programs, field trips, contests, competitions, and opportunities for kids of all ages. In speaking with summer director O’Donaghue he enthusiastically described some of the new items on the agenda for this season “We have a tour of Fenway Park as a new field trip and the new whiffle ball park across the street for the kids to use. We also have a trip to the library on Mondays from 10:00 – 11:00 and Jazzercise will be offered on Wednesdays from 10:00 – 11:00.”
These new programs are in addition to the multitude of existing programs that are currently offered. Mondays and Wednesdays are contest and competition days which offer the likes of: four square contests, knockout contest, hot shot contest, jump rope contests, checkers contests, connect four contests, ice melting contests, bean game contests and basketball, baseball, football and softball clinics.
Tuesday and Thursdays are typically field trip days including Roller Kingdom, Silver Lake State Park, Canobie Lake, Franklin Park Zoo, Kingston State Park, Hampton State Park, Water Country, and a Manchester Fisher Cats game. The field trips require an additional fee in order to attend and the kids are all excited about the venues. Fridays the staff and kids are found at Robinson Pond participating in outdoor activities, weather permitting. O’Donaghue relates “the staff is very experienced. They are college students or teachers who work full time and CITs (counselors in training) are local high school students working part time. The Fire Department was here on Friday and gave us instruction on adult, child and infant CPR, and use of the AED (automatic external defibrillator). Our arts and crafts instructor, Kaitlin Laquerre, does crafts with the kids twice daily and our Athletic Director, Ralph Carpentier, runs all kinds of contests, clinics, and games for the kids. We are all excited to be here in this building.”
Parents also have the option of signing kids up for tennis lessons given daily at Dr. H. O. Smith School. Yates explained, “for the tennis lessons there are 32 kids per session and there are five sessions offered during the summer. Right now we have only four slots open for the lessons.” Both kids and parents alike have great things to say about the summer program. A multi year attendee, Denika says “I love to come and meet new friends. I love the field trips and the arts and crafts.” While returning veterans like Bill, Brandon and Bretton “love to play football, basketball and four squares. We like the air conditioning and the fact that it is a lot bigger than the other place.” Jeanna Knapp, whose kids have attended the summer sessions for many years, happily states “My kids love coming here. This building is so much more spacious giving the kids much more room to move. It is also much cooler so on those really hot days they have a place to go to be more comfortable.”
The Hudson Recreation Summer Program has something to offer for kids of all ages … so rain, rain stay away, let the Hudson kids have fun at play!
First Offense – 25 Years; Second – Mandatory Life
by Len Lathrop
On Monday, June 26, 2006, Governor John Lynch signed a tough, new law to better protect children and punish predators.
“With the law, we are sending a clear message that if you prey on children in New Hampshire you are going to prison for a long time,” Governor Lynch said, “sexual predators rob children of their childhood. The harm that predators do stays with children for the rest of their lives. The punishment predators face will now be commensurate with their crimes and with the lasting damage they inflict.”
Joined by law enforcement include Hudson Chief of Police Richard Gendron and Legislators at the signing, the Legislative House Bill 1692, contains more than 24 provisions aimed at better protecting New Hampshire children. In addition to toughening penalties, it includes provisions that mandate improving registration and monitoring of sex offenders, requiring the Department of Corrections to study the development of a GPS monitoring system for offenders, and giving parents better information about whether sexual predators are living in their neighborhoods.
Both sponsors of the this legislation, Representative Peter L. Batula (R - Merrimack) and Senator Joseph Foster (D - Nashua) spoke of the work that, under the direction of New Hampshire State Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, police chiefs, county attorneys and victims’ advocates undertook in comprehensive research and recommendations to make this appropriate for New Hampshire.
Ayotte said, “Pedophiles will be held accountable, and they are going to prison for a long time.”
Hudson Chief Gendron stated, “This legislation provides new provisions of the old law which now will allow local police departments to notify the community directly of sexual predators in their neighborhood. Other changes required the offender to register twice a year and the police can verify that resident. This bill protects our child while it also seems that past legislators protected the sex offender. These laws allow a resident to have better information to allow for the better protection of our children.”
We spent one year crafting this bill, but it was a privilege to give up our today’s for our children’s tomorrows.
Representative Peter L. Batula (R – Merrimack)