5 Things You Need to Know Today in Worcester – Jan. 26, 2021

 by Tom MarinoJanuary 26, 2021

In today’s daily 5 Things You Need to Know feature, ThisWeekinWorcester.com explores five important items and stories that Worcester and Central Massachusetts residents should keep a close eye on.

These five things can cover a whole range of subjects and issues that we feel are pertinent to understanding what’s going on in the city and the cities and towns surrounding Worcester.

In today’s edition – January 26, 2021 – a pilot program launches for COVID-19 testing for child care programs, scrubs with style launches nominations for its third annual "We Love Nurses" award,  the Community Foundation of North Central Massachusetts is accepting grant applications for environmental preservation and animal welfare, the Worcester Department of Public Works and Parks announces the 2021 Woo Angler Series and gas prices rise two cents in Massachusetts.


Pilot Program Launches for COVID-19 Testing for Child Care Programs

Governor Baker's office announced the launch of a police program to provide on-demand PCR testing to child care providers and the families they serve to ensure easy access to testing when there is suspected COVID-19 exposure.

The Department of Early Education and Care [EEC], partnering with private and philanthropic funders from the Massachusetts Early Childhood Funder Collaborative and BayCoast Bank, will launch an eight week pilot, setting up eight rotating drive-through testing sites throughout the Commonwealth, which will be open only to child care providers and individuals affiliated with programs.

In addition, EEC is dedicating $8 million in state and federal funds to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) to distribute to child care providers at no cost. Child care providers will be able to order up to a one-month supply of PPE, including masks for children and adults, gloves, hand sanitizer, and other supplies.


Scrubs with Style Third Annual 'We Love Nurses' Award

Scrubs with Style of Northborough is currently accepting nominations for their third annual “We Love Nurses Award."

This award rewards and celebrates an outstanding nurse whose attitude, dedication, clinical excellence and patient empathy goes above and beyond.

  • Nurses that work at one of Massachusetts stellar hospitals
  • Nurses that work in Massachusetts nursing homes, community health centers, or schools
  • A Massachusetts Nursing Student that is a future superstar
  • An experienced nurse from Massachusetts whose mentoring has had a profound influence on a new nurse

The honoree will be celebrated with three new scrub outfits, Klogs shoes, a Prestige Stethoscope, and gift certificates from Northborough businesses including: Innovations Beauty Salon, Serenity Nails & Spa, Craftworks, Town Center Pizza and Lowe’s Variety/Meat Market and more ($700 value).

To nominate an outstanding nurse, visit scrubswithstyle.com/award or email [email protected]

Nominations may also be mailed to:

Scrubs with Style
247B West Main St.
Northborough, MA 01532
Attn: Jackie Taylor

The deadline for nominations is Monday, February 15, 2021.


Grant Applications Being Accepted for Environmental Preservation and Animal Welfare

The Community Foundation of North Central Massachusetts [CFNCM] is now accepting grant applications for its Environmental Preservation and Animal Welfare Grant Program.

This program focuses on preserving and providing access to the natural beauty of North Central Massachusetts and enhancing the welfare of domestic animals.

The CFNCM is accepting grant applications through Friday, February 26, 2021 and award decisions will be finalized April 22.

Examples of projects that would qualify for Environmental Preservation and Animal Welfare grants include those involving:

  • Land or Water Preservation
  • Habitat Restoration
  • Improving Public Access to Natural Places
  • Environmental or Outdoor Education
  • Animal Rescue Protection and Placement
  • Animal Welfare Education

Applications can be submitted by visiting the Community Foundation website.


The 2021 Woo Angler Series Announced

The Worcester Department of Public Works and Parks announced the Woo Angler Series on Monday, January 25.

The series starts February 10, and includes virtual and in-person events through September 18.

The first event, presented virtually, is Introduction to Ice Fishing. See the wooanglerseries.com for more information.


Gas Prices Up 2 Cents for Second Straight Week in MA

AAA Northeast, the popular not-for-profit auto club, reports changes in gas prices across the region on a weekly basis.

Massachusetts’s average gas price increased two cents from last week ($2.34), averaging $2.36 per gallon. That price is 17 cents higher than a month ago ($2.19), and 21 cents cheaper than January 25. 2020 ($2.57).

Massachusetts’s average gas price is four cents lower than the national average.

AAA Northeast’s January 25 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be two cents higher than last week, averaging $2.40 a gallon. Today’s national average price is 15 cents higher than a month ago ($2.25), and 12 cents cheaper than this day last year ($2.52).

Comparison to neighboring states, according to AAA Northeast:

Region Current Price One Week Ago One Month Ago One Year Ago
Massachusetts $2.36 $2.34 $2.19 $2.57
Rhode Island $2.37 $2.34 $2.19 $2.56
Connecticut $2.46 $2.43 $2.25 $2.65
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