Salem Cat Fanciers Flock to See Their Favorite Felines

by Andrea Ganley-Dannewitz

A pro being judged

Cat fanciers came from all over to check out the New Hampshire Feline Fanciers cat show held at the Icenter arena on Lowell Road this past weekend.  Many rare and exotic breed cats as well as more commonly seen breeds and even household mix breed cats were set to be doted on; primped and pampered to “purr-fection” with the goal of being the cat’s meow of the competition.

Judy Kitchin of Salem shows Maine Coon cats and breeds on a small scale.  One of her gorgeous females, Fiona, was competing as a novice working toward her Champion title in the Championship Class.  Judy also had with her a 4-month-old kitten, Conan, who was competing in the Kitten Class.  It was his first show, so of course he was a little nervous.

The entire arena was filled with pet product vendors, judging rings, and cats with their handlers and owners.  Some of the rare breed cats seen at the show were the Egyptian Mau, slender, short-haired, and leopard like in appearance.  Oriental short hair cats, though a rare breed, were plentiful at the show.  This breed is worth checking out, as they are quite different looking but strikingly beautiful, with their long, lean, and slender bodies, narrow faces and striking features.  They look like something from an ancient Egyptian statue, even though they are thought to come from Thailand and were derived from the Siamese cat.

Used to being rated

This show gave cat fanciers of all ages an opportunity to see the different breeds, watch the judging of the cats and also an opportunity to shop for specialty pet products.  Several local animal rescue organizations were also present, promoting the adoption of homeless cats.  (A lot of breeders and cat handlers this writer spoke with at the show had several rescue cats at home, and some even present for the show.)

One interesting point about cat shows that differ from dog shows that this writer certainly didn’t know, is that household cats and purebreds who do not meet their breed standard can compete amongst themselves in the Household Pet Class.  Judges looking at household pets look for beauty and personality.  Since there is no “breed standard” for household pets, judges allow cats of any color, hair length, or size to compete.  In some associations, judges will group cats of similar colors or features together to have them compete against each other, while others are judged all together.  It is said most judges enjoy their time in the Household Pet show ring.  They are free to award finals to their own liking, or if a cat just has “that something special.”

Household cats do need to meet the same basic show requirements as pedigree cats.  The cat must be up to date on all vaccines and confirmed free of parasites.  All cats must be bathed and groomed, including ears, eyes, and teeth cleaned, and nails clipped.  For more information on pedigree, check out the New Hampshire Feline Fancier’s Association website at; the Cat Fancier’s Association at; and to learn more about the Household Pet Cat Club visit them at

Layout of the Icenter

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Boys and Girls Club Creates Alumni Association

From left: Pentucket Bank’s chief operating officer Scott Cote, Deputy Police Chief Bill Ganley, Fire Chief Kevin Breen and Technical Needs’ President Steve Gudek laugh as they reminisce about their Boys and Girls Club experiences.  They are seated in the Eclipse Teen Center of the Boys and Girls Club of Salem.

For more than 40 years, the Boys and Girls Club of Salem has served the youth of our community.  Thousands of boys and girls have passed through the doors of the old and new building.  The club also accommodates many locally based associations who use the building for events and meetings.  The club is establishing an alumni association.  Its purpose would be to promote the good works of the club.  Participants do not necessarily need to be club alumni to belong; only a desire to deepen the effect Boys and Girls Clubs provide.  It is hoped that this association would sponsor an event or two to increase its membership while also increasing the reach of club programs and services. 

For the past few months, the Boys and Girls Clubs The Positive Place television show has been filming segments with alumni.  They include Salems Fire Chief Kevin Breen, Salems Deputy Police Chief Bill Ganley, Technical Needs President Steve Gudek, Pentucket Bank President Scott Cote, Attorney Patrick Donovan and Kristen Learned-Magoon, CEO of local manufacturing business HRI.  These alumni reflected on the influence Boys and Girls Clubs have had on their lives.  Several now have children attending the club.  For more information about becoming part of the alumni association, contact Martha Breen at 898-7709 ext. 6 or e-mail

The Positive Place can be seen on local access channel SCTV 17.

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Kelley Library Adventures

Carl and Justine listening to the story

The Kelley Library in Salem has kept it very fun and exciting for the children who come to the library.  Every day is full of adventure, from stories to magic shows, for the little guys to almost teenagers.  There is something for everyone, including the adults.

One day started off with a story hour about sheep, complete with a cute hand puppet.  Because the theme has been Australia, sheep stories fit right in.  “Baba Black Sheep” made a big hit, especially with Cathy’s fun way of interacting with the little ones.  Next came “Sheep in a Jeep”, and Cathy again made it exciting with sheep cutouts on a large felt-covered board.

Ronald McDonald came in next to entertain the kids.  Many moved over from story hour to continue with this adventure.  Before Ronald actually started his show, many parents used this time to get photos.  Ronald McDonald was bright and full of laughter and he very quickly got the children mesmerized with his antics.  He talked with posters and props on the many types of books found in the library.  Ronald’s talk ended with everyone fishing “to catch the reading bug” – many prizes were passed out.

Next, everyone moved outside on the front lawn to watch a karate demonstration, put on by Professional Martial Arts from Derry (formally Tokyo Joe’s).  The children watched these performers “starry eyed”.  Many could be heard asking their parents when they could start taking these lessons.  The karate students did an excellent job and their professionalism, training, and discipline stood out.  This is what the viewers saw and liked.  Good job!

After this, the children and remaining parents went back inside to watch movies.  This packed day is pretty common for the summer schedule.  The library people, Cathy and Cory, work very hard getting entertainment ready for all to see.  Their budget comes from the vending machines on the bottom floor, so they do miracles with what they have.  The kids seem to love the variety of activities and always leave with a real love of Kelley Library.

A special thanks to all the many Salem merchants and businesses that help to make this possible.  You make it happen for the children of Salem!

Cathy with her sheep

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Salem Family Resources-Success By 6 Accepts Kiwanis Donation

Kiwanis President Howie Zidel recently presented a $1,000 donation to Salem Family Resources-Success By 6 Executive Director Cindy Jury.  The donation will be used to support the organization’s popular Parenting and Play Group program.

The Kiwanis Club of Salem recently donated $1,000 to help support the Parenting and Play Group program offered by Salem Family Resources-Success By 6.

Salem Family Resources-Success By 6 provides support and programs to families in the greater Salem area to help them meet the physical, social, emotional and educational needs of their young children.

Parenting and Play Groups run year-round and currently serve about 100 families in Greater Salem.  Parents or other family caregivers participate with their young children in weekly, facilitated sessions with eight to 10 other families for fun, age-appropriate children’s learning activities, parent support and discussions about raising children.  Sessions take place at Triumphant Cross Lutheran Church, which has provided in-kind space to house the program since 2006.  Registrations for fall sessions are currently being accepted, and a nominal registration fee may be waived for income-eligible families.

“This generous donation from Kiwanis will help our organization continue a unique and valuable program that strengthens families in our community by giving parents the tools they need to be more effective,” said Cindy Jury, Executive Director.

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