5 Things You Need to Know Today in Worcester - May 28

 by TWIW StaffMay 28, 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 – Friday, May 28 - the Mercantile Center rooftop bar and restaurant in Worcester is still on schedule to open this summer, the Worcester Fire Hockey team back in action in June, a Worcester County youth diversion program is awarded a $36,000 grant, ArtsWorcester holds its 19th Biennial Block Party on June 12, and Thrive Support & Advocacy announces its first COO.


Roof Top Bar and Restaurant in Worcester Set to Open this Summer

The Broadway Hospitality Group expects to open the Mercantile Roof Top Bar & Restaurant at Mercantile Center this summer.

Plans show the restaurant will feature a rooftop deck with 500 seats in an indoor/outdoor bar and eatery.

Broadway Hospitality Group is also responsible for Tavern on the Square.

Ruth’s Chris Steak House is also on schedule to open in the fall of 2022. The upscale dining restaurant will feature 275 seats at 4 Mercantile.

May 28, 2021 Arts Worcester
Artist's rendering of the Mercantile Center rooftop bar/Image Courtesy: Downtown Worcester BID


Worcester Fire Hockey Team Plays in June

The Worcester Fire Hockey Team will compete in the BFit Heroes Hockey Tournament from June 11 to June 13 at New England Sports Center in Marlborough.

Firefighters will play to raise money for NEADS, a service dog training non-profit, On-site Academy, a non-profit residential treatment and training center for critical incident stress management, and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

To support the team’s fundraising, contributions can be made here.


Worcester County Youth Diversion Program Awarded $36,000 Grant

Worcester Country District Attorney Joe Early Jr.’s office and the City of Worcester received a state grant for over $36,000 to contract services with Youth Opportunities Unlimited [YOU, Inc.]

This first of its kind program in Massachusetts allows juveniles charged with domestic assault to avoid detention and a criminal record while helping the victimized family heal. Worcester will provide participants access to Recreation Worcester programs, offering curriculum-based learning focused on athletics, arts, and academics.

The program has nearly a 90 percent successful completion rate, with a recidivism rate under 5 percent.

Operating in all five juvenile courts in Worcester County, including Worcester, Milford, Leominster, Fitchburg and Dudley, youths aged 12-17 charged with assault and battery on a family member or caregiver qualify for the diversion program. The program postpones arraignment for three months and family services arranged. If the service plan is being followed, the charge will be dismissed prior to arraignment and the juvenile will avoid having a criminal record.


ArtsWorcester to host 19th Biennial Block Party

ArtsWorcester's 19th Biennial Block Party is scheduled for Saturday, June 12, from 11 AM to 3 PM. It is open and free to all.

At the block party, an artist selected from one of the 63 works of the ArtsWorcester Biennial exhibition will receive the Sally Bishop prize, which includes a $1,000 award. The award winner will also win a solo exhibition during the 2021-22 season at ArtsWorcester.

A second artist will receive the Evelyn Claywell Absher Prize, a new award for abstract artwork awarded for the first time this year. The Absher family is funding the $1,000 award honoring Evelyn’s memory and her vision.

Beth McLaughlin, Artistic Director and Chief Curator at Fuller Craft Museum, selected sixty-three works for the exhibition from 470 submissions.

The ArtsWorcester Nineteenth Biennial runs at the ArtsWorcester main galleries at 44 Portland St. between June 3 and August 1.


Thrive Support & Advocacy Appoints its First COO

Thrive Support & Advocacy, a nonprofit empowering youth and adults with developmental disabilities, announced on Tuesday, May 25, that it appointed Worcester’s Stacey Forrest as the human services agency’s first chief operating officer.

Forrest will provide overall planning, direction and supervision of Thrive operations and community-based programs.

Forrest brings over 15 years of human services experience to Thrive. Her portfolio includes management of Thrive’s youth and adult experiences, family support programs, training, clinical, human resources and marketing functions.

Forrest spent over 15 years with JRI, a human services agency based in Needham where she began her career as a direct care staff member.  Most recently, she served as the executive director of JRI’s Connecticut division, managing a $15 million operating budget and several programs including group homes, schools and community-based services.

Forrest earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Stonehill College in Easton, Mass. and a Master of Education degree in school administration from the American International College in Springfield, Mass.

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