5 Things You Need to Know Today in Worcester - August 3

 by TWIW StaffAugust 3, 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 – Tuesday, August 3 - Central Mass Jazz Fest Pop-Ups start today, Polar Park is hosting a food truck and craft beer festival this fall, Quinsigamond Community College is reopening their Early Childhood Education lab, Massachusetts is ranked the #1 state for healthcare and gas prices are up one cent this week.

Central Mass Jazz Fest Pop-Ups in August

Central Mass Jazz Fest features three live jazz pop-up concerts in August.

Tuesday, August 3, Noon to 2:30 PM
Worcester Beer Garden, 64 Franklin Street

Jazz Soup featuring Joe Reidy, Al Vaudreuil, Peter McNearney and the Jazzed Up Trio

Wednesday, August 11, Noon to 2:30 PM
Belmont A.M.E. Zion Church, 55 Illinois Street

Michelle Wilson with Pamela Hines, Isosceles Groove, A.M.E. Zion Choir

Thursday, August 19, 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM
ChaShu Ramen, 38 Franklin Street

Jazzed Up Trio with special guest Bill Fanning

To sponsor or donate, visit WCCATV.com.

The Main event airs September 6 through September 10 at 8 PM on Channel 194 in Worcester.

Polar Park Food Truck and Craft Beer Festival

The Worcester Red Sox announced the Inaugural Polar Park Food Truck & Craft Beer Festival scheduled for Saturday, October 2 from 5 PM to 9 PM.

Tickets go on sale on August 3 at 10 AM, Tickets are $35 that include access to the event, $10 food truck voucher and 10 drink tickets. A $25 Designated Driver ticket includes a $10 food truck voucher.

The festival will feature approximately 25 food trucks and 30 craft breweries stationed around the warning track on the field at Polar Park. Attendees can sample a plethora of food and drink offerings while roaming the playing field and enjoying live entertainment throughout the evening by The Nightly’s, the band previously known as Munk Duane of Boston.

QCC Reopens Early Childhood Education Lab

Quinsigamond Community College’s Early Childhood Education Lab School will reopen its doors in Fall 2021.  The school is currently enrolling children for the 2021- 2022 academic year, under the leadership of new Director Kristen Fuller.

The Early Childhood Education Lab School serves as a lab/training site for students majoring in Early Childhood Education and is an integral part of the program. It provides supervised student participation and field placement experience for Early Childhood Education Associate Degree students.

Early Childhood Education Lab School was the first center granted the highest level on the Massachusetts Quality Rating and Improvement System [QRIS]. The QRIS is a method used to assess, improve, and communicate the level of quality in early child care, early child care education, and after-school settings.

Massachusetts Ranked Best State for Healthcare

A new study ranks the best and worst states for health care in the United States.

Researchers ranked Massachusetts as the top rated state for healthcare in the country.

The study considered a total of 44 metrics to determine the results. Here is how Massachusetts ranked in some of those key areas.

  • 1st – % of Insured Adults
  • 1st – % of Insured Children
  • 2nd – Physicians per Capita
  • 3rd – % of Residents Age 12+ Initiating Vaccination
  • 3rd – Avg. Monthly Insurance Premium
  • 3rd – % of Adults with No Dental Visit in Past Year
  • 22nd – Hospital Beds per Capita
  • 24th – % of At-Risk Adults with No Routine Doctor Visit in Past Two Years
  • 29th – % of Medical Residents Retained
  • 29th – Dentists per Capita

In overall ranking, here is how states in and around New England ranked:

  • 1st - Massachusetts
  • 2nd - Rhode Island
  • 9th - Connecticut
  • 11th - New Hampshire
  • 12th - Pennsylvania
  • 14th - New Jersey
  • 15th - Maine
  • 21st - New York

See the best and worst overall states in ranked in the study, below.

To see the full study results and its methodology, visit WalletHub.com.

Gas Prices Up One Cent This Week in MA

AAA Northeast reports changes in gas prices across the region on a weekly basis.

Massachusetts’s average gas price is up one cent since last week, averaging $3.03 per gallon. That price is four cents higher than a month ago ($2.99), and 90 cents higher than August 2, 2020 ($2.13).

“Americans are paying a pretty penny to hit the road this summer. On average, Massachusetts motorists are paying 23 cents more to fill up since the beginning of May,” said Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast Director of Public and Government Affairs. “August could prove to be even more expensive if crude oil prices increase, driven by market concerns of rising COVID case numbers and how that could negatively affect global demand in the near future.”

Massachusetts’s average gas price is 14 cents lower than the national average.

AAA Northeast’s August 2 survey of fuel prices found the current national average to be two cents higher than last week, averaging $3.15 a gallon. Today’s national average price is five cents higher than a month ago ($3.12), and 99 cents higher than this day last year ($2.18).

Comparison to neighboring states, according to AAA Northeast:

Region Current Price One Week Ago One Month Ago One Year Ago
Massachusetts $3.03 $3.02 $2.99 $2.13
Rhode Island $3.04 $3.03 $3.00 $2.14
Connecticut $3.16 $3.15 $3.12 $2.20


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