Fast News for Feb. 6

Teachers on Parade: MILFORD – Anyone with an interest in what goes on in the classrooms at Creative Ventures Gallery can visit the opening of the Teachers on Parade Show from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Feb. 19 in the Gallery at 411 Nashua St. in Milford. On that occasion, Creative Ventures also will be hosting the Chamber Business After Hours function for members of the Souhegan Valley Chamber of Commerce. This will be an event where art and business come together and where art teachers will be on hand to mingle and to discuss their work with interested representatives of our local business community.

For those who miss the opening, the Teachers’ Show will hang in the gallery through Feb. 22, and during that time visitors and guests can view examples of the work of these amazing professionals. This will be an “all media” show, displaying drawing, colored pencil, printmaking, watercolor, pastel, oil and acrylic paintings as well as polymer clay creations.

Artists represented in this show include Beth Ashton, Eileen Belanger, Mike Brazao, Kristine Brock, Elizabeth Craumer, Paul Ducret, Alex Haas, Emily Johnson, Lynne Noseworthy, James O’Brien, Diane Orzel, Jeanne Pierce, Steve Previte, Chris Reid, Sugitha Srinivasan, Joan Tierney, Chris Volpe and Judith Wing.

Some instructors teach ongoing classes while others conduct workshops that can be for only a single day or as long as a week at a time, depending upon the subject. These talented, professionally trained individuals bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to Creative Ventures classrooms and, with their enthusiasm and encouragement, nurture students to achieve their goals.

For additional information call 603-672-2500 or check out the website at creativeventuresfineart.com. Refreshments will be served on the night of the opening. Free and open to the public.

Buschmann to host meet and greet

WILTON – Ralph Buschmann will host a meet and greet from 2:30-4 p.m. on Feb. 15 at Garey’s Harvest Restaurant on Main Street in Wilton.

Buschmann is running for Wilton Selectmen.

Beekeeping events on tap

MONT VERNON – Interested in beekeeping as a hobby, as a business? Come learn about bees and beekeeping from the experts. Gatherings are set for March 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31 (with a snow date of April 7) from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at St. James Methodist Church, 646 Daniel Webster Highway, in Merrimack.

Sign up at http://www.mvbee.org/beeschool.htm

For more information, call John 978-458-8001.

Registration night

MILFORD – Jacques Memorial School will be holding a registration night for kindergarten for the 2020 -2021 school year, on Monday, Feb. 17, from 5-7 p.m. at the Jacques Memorial School, 9 Elm St. Only complete kindergarten packets can be accepted. The following is required prior to entering school: birth certificate, proof of residency, current physical exam and immunization record. Please bring these documents on the evening of the 17th. Students must be 5 years of age, by September 30, 2020, to enter kindergarten for the 2020-2021 school year. If you have any questions, please call 673-4434 x 0.

LaBelle hosting comedy night

AMHERST – Boston comedy legend Steve Sweeney will perform at LaBelle Winery, 345 NH-101, on Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m. as part of the winery’s 2020 Performance Series. Doors open at 6:45 p.m. The performance will feature a full cash bar. Tickets for the event are $30 can be purchased on LaBelle Winery’s website. The Bistro at LaBelle Winery will remain open late on the evening of the performance. The winery recommends that those dining prior to or after the show make a reservation in advance as seating is limited. Bistro reservations can be made online or by calling (603) 672-9898 x 1. Sweeney, one of America’s top stand-up comedians, has appeared in several films and television shows, including “Late Night with David Letterman,” “Evening at the Improv” and “Comics Come Home, Comedy Central.” This will be Sweeney’s first appearance at LaBelle Winery.

Doug Olsen Latin Jazz Quintet

AMHERST – Souhegan High School, 412 Boston Post Rd., will present the Doug Olsen Latin Jazz Quintet at the school’s 2nd Jazz Night of the year on Friday, Feb. 7th at 7:00pm. Olsen has been a free-lance trumpeter for over 25 years performing jazz and world music. He plays solo and/or lead trumpet with many of New England’s top bands and has also been a featured soloist with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, USAF Band of Liberty, the Smithsonian Masterworks Jazz Orchestra, Berklee College of Music Faculty Bigband, the Big Apple Circus and Little Anthony and the Imperials. Doug has recorded extensively on pop/rock, swing, jazz and Latin CDs, including “Prozac Nation” by Bellevue Cadillac (featured on “The Sopranos” and “Shallow Hal”) and jazz vocalist Michelle Mailhot’s “A Happy Madness”. Joining Olsen will be jazz ensembles from Souhegan HS, Windham HS, Alvirne HS and Amherst Middle School. General admission for the event is $10.00 and doors will open at 6:30pm. For additional information contact Carl Benevides at cbenevides@sprise.com.

Mock election

AMHERST – On Feb. 5, nearly 10,000 New Hampshire schoolchildren casted their ballots in the nation’s only primary mock election. For the first time, Souhegan High School student journalists collaborated with NHPBS and Franklin Pierce University to livestream the excitement of the Primary Mock Election, providing a running tally of votes and interviews with participating voters, elected officials, campaign staff and candidates. Alexander Heffner, host of “The Open Mind” on PBS guided student journalists from Souhegan High School as they shared the excitement of the election. The show livestreamed from Franklin Pierce University’s Manchester. Souhegan student journalists represented the online magazine, “The Claw,” as well as Saber Spotlight, a weekly video news review. Final results are expected to be released by February 6 at 10:00 a.m.

Toddler Tumbling

MILFORD – The Milford Recreation Department will offer Toddler Tumbling, for ages 2-5. These 4-week sessions include fun activities and exercises that will help children develop balance, encourage locomotion, learn to follow instruction and develop independence! Parent participation is required. Instructor John K. Town Hall 3rd Fl. Auditorium. Limited to 10 participants. Mondays 10-10:30 a.m. Res $25/NRes $30. Go to milfordrec.com for dates.

N.H. reduces wait times for psych beds

The Granite State continues to make progress in reducing the time psychiatric patients spend waiting in emergency rooms for inpatient care.

The Department of Health and Human Services and Gov. Chris Sununu released new data Wednesday showing that the total number of days psychiatric patients spent in emergency departments decreased by 60 percent in the last two years. The average length of time individuals waited for admission to the state psychiatric hospital or a designated receiving facility decreased from six days to just under four days during that time.

Lawmakers passed bipartisan legislation aimed at addressing the problem in 2017 and followed up last year with funding for mobile crisis teams, designated receiving beds for patients in mental health crises and supported housing for those leaving the state mental health hospital.

Animal cruelty bill considered

CONCORD – A bill aimed at putting more teeth into existing laws about animals being left outside or left without adequate food and water received a significant amount pushback during a hearing on Tuesday before the House Environment and Agriculture Committee.

It is among a handful of bills being considered this session involving animals.

House Bill 1389 is designed to protect dogs from death due to exposure, said its sponsor, Rep. Katherine Rogers, D-Concord.

“There are dogs freezing to death,” said Rogers, a former prosecutor, who said this bill would address gaps in the law that would allow a neighbor to bring attention to abuse and allow law enforcement to remove the animal from such a situation.

But Scott Isabelle, who has a small kennel of Siberian huskies and is a recreational musher and hiker in the Lakes Region, said if the bill passes “our dogs will not have the ability to run and play all day in a safe open kennel.”

They would not be able to grow their thicker winter coat for winter and would be forced to stay in the basement or be crated most of the day, he said.

“They will go from being lean, energetic, happy, healthy dogs to overweight, sad, destructive dogs,” Isabelle said.

The bill notes that if the National Weather Service has issued advisories for extreme weather, dogs left out more than 15 minutes could be considered victims of abuse.

There were 21 people who signed up to testify at the start of the hearing and all but one opposed the bill.

Members of the committee asked what the bill would do that is not currently in statute and how this would impact those who have “doggie doors” that allow the animals to come and go as they please.

Rogers said there is not enough language in state law to protect dogs from death. She said prosecutors would use their discretion and would not “harass” law-abiding dog owners.

Rogers offered an amendment to the measure which is more aligned with a statute in Maine and was not limited by dates on a calendar.

The bill is among a collection of measures aimed at animal, retailers, restaurants, brewpubs, and dog owners.

Senate Bill 450 looks to brewpubs to allow dogs in their outdoor areas. House Bill 1483 would apply to dogs in outdoor restaurants. House Bill 1448 is relative to the importation of dogs and their screening for Brucella canis.

House Bill 1388 would prohibit the sale of dogs, cats or rabbits in retail establishments. House Bill 1277 deals with issues on dog licenses and relicensing. House Bill 1164 relates to cruelty involving cats and dogs.

Paula Tracy of InDepthNH.org may be reached at 603-738-5635.