Having returned fr om the Mediterranean deployment, Black Sea Fleet (BSF) landing ships Saratov and Novocherkassk called at…[mappress]Source: Russian Navy, December 13, 2012; Image: Flot Back to overview,Home naval-today BSF Ships Not Violated Russian-Ukrainian Treaties View post tag: not View post tag: Navy View post tag: BSF View post tag: ships BSF Ships Not Violated Russian-Ukrainian Treaties View post tag: Naval View post tag: Russian-Ukrainian View post tag: News by topic View post tag: Treaties December 13, 2012 View post tag: Violated Training & Education Share this article
FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail We send out Christmas greetings to friends and family near and far, we put up the tree in hopes Santa will arrive, but most of all we take the time to thank God for His Son. Kate Summers | Christmas Greetings And so, seven hundred years before the Wise Men gave, before the angels sang, and before the shepherds arrived, Isaiah explains for us in wonderful detail what Christmas is all about. Daniel Akin | Christmas Messages Christmas is for everyone, adults and children alike. Allow this season fill your heart, and let go of the things you dislike. Julie Hebert | Christmas Poems When we remember a special Christmas, it is not the presents that made it special, but the laughter, the feeling of love, and the togetherness of friends and family that made that Christmas special. Catherine Pulsifer | Family Some countries don’t celebrate Christmas, but everyone welcomes in the New Year, even if it’s on different dates. Paul K Stevens, Vintage New Year: Cards, Customs, Quotes, Poems, Myths and Legends | New Year Quotes I have come to discover material gifts aren’t the important things of Christmas. I learned this through an experience even as a young child. I now know relationships, traditions, and the greatest gift of all – Jesus, are the important gifts to treasure. Charlotte Holt, Christmas Traditions and Memories | Memory God’s love is a gift beyond measure that surrounds us and covers us when the fire of life rains down. It is God’s love and the very reason for the season we call Christmas – or it should be. Mary Southerland | Let God Guide You With the passage of time and increased maturity, our excitement regarding Christmas may change. But our reason for celebrating grows deeper and more meaningful as our focus shifts from gifts to Christ. Now the tree reminds us of the tree Jesus died on to pay for our sins. The lights testify that He is the Light of the World, and the gifts are a mere shadow of the greatest gift ever given – Jesus Christ. Charles Stanley | Quotes about Change I will live this day as if it were Christmas. I will be a giver of gifts and deliver to my enemies the gift of forgiveness; my opponents, tolerance; my friends, a smile; my children, a good example, and every gift will be wrapped with unconditional love. Og Mandino, Mission: Success: A Breathtaking Personal Message of Hope and Happiness for a Successful Life | Love December days . . . as Christmas time draws near; brings family warmth, and friendship’s joyful cheer, from memory’s store so many days to bless and cherish so in quiet thankfulness. Johm McLeod | Inspirational Poems I bring you the most joyful news ever announced, and it is for everyone! The Savior – yes the Messiah, the Lord – has been born tonight in Bethlehem! Luke 2:10 -11 | Joy Advent is a season of wise women and men following the example of Jesus and thereby constructing a spiritual life on solid principles. Robert F. Morneau, Fathoming Bethlehem | Wise It amazes me that something that happened over 2000 years ago is still recognized today. The birth of Jesus Christ – the reason for Christmas. May we always be inspired and may we always recognize that this miracle is the reason for our celebrations. Catherine Pulsifer | Inspirational Quotes Peace on earth will come to stay, when we live Christmas every day. Helen Steiner Rice | Peace I don’t want a Christmas you can buy. I don’t want a Christmas you can make. What I want is a Christmas you can hold. A Christmas that holds me, remakes me, revives me. I want a Christmas that whispers, Jesus. Ann Voskamp, The Greatest Gift | Wish And at this Christmas season, when we pause to reflect on the Incarnation of Christ – that is, of God becoming human in Jesus – we reemphasize that Jesus Christ should remain central to the celebration. Melvin Banks Sr. | Focus We don’t need more parties, or decorations, or gifts, or worries, or expectations to be added to Christmas. What we really need is some grace. For ourselves and others. And we need to love people. Susanna Foth Aughtmon, Mornings with Jesus | Worry Don’t be like the religious leaders who were more concerned with tradition. Follow the example of the wise men, and seek God this Christmas. It’s the reason we celebrate Christmas – God wants to connect with you! Rick Warren | Example Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart. Washington Irving | Christmas Brings Memories Flooding Back What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present, hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace. Agnes M. Pharo | Future Anyone familiar with the Christmas Story itself will also understand that Mary was happily married to Joseph and that the willing took on the role of caregiver for Jesus. Sarah Lawrence, Mary Mother Of Jesus: Understanding Mary a Bit Closer | Happy After all, isn’t Christmas the beginning of our hope? It is the celebration of God becoming man and taking on the ‘form of a servant’ so that he could ultimately give His life for us. Dr. David Jeremiah | Believe The angels’ visit to the shepherds became the first Christmas celebration. It’s as though heaven and earth were celebrating it together, as though a portal to glory had been opened up. Greg Laurie | Angel Smiling On You Christmas can’t be bought from a store . . . Maybe Christmas means a little bit more. Dr.Seuss | Appreciation Who can add to Christmas? The perfect motive is that God so loved the world. The perfect gift is that He gave His only Son. The only requirement is to believe in Him. The reward of faith is that you shall have everlasting life. Corrie Ten Boom | Faith The love we feel, that sense of joy for the Christmas Miracle, the Baby Boy will not wither, break or fade for it’s a promise that God has made. Susan J. Ellis, Christmas Reflections Thru the Years: My Christmas Greetings | Trust As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:20-21 (NLT) | Angel There is a new spiritual energy to the beginning of Advent. It has little to do with the countdown of shopping days to Christmas. It has to do with Advent’s intrinsic, embedded hope of a new life, a changed life, in Christ. S. Joseph Krempa, Captured Fire: Seasonal and Sanctoral Cycle, Year Two | Enthusiasm All around us at Christmas this year there will be those less fortunate than we are. But don’t pass up the opportunities God gives you this Christmas to personally “be charitable” to others. Dr. David Jeremiah | Giving Is Fun God’s Message is very personal, and it is life changing. Open yourself to receive God’’s Message this Advent. David Mead, Message In The Manger | Inspirational Messages You see, the Christmas most people celebrate is not the way God intended it to be celebrated. We have commercialized it, super-sized it, downgraded it, and for most people, ignored the real meaning of Christmas. C. P. Lewis, Humpty Dumpty Is Damaged Goods: A Christmas Message in 9 Lessons and Carols The only blind person at Christmas time is he who has not Christmas in his heart. Hellen Keller | Famous Quotes We can participate in every festivity of the Christmas season, but until we receive the gift of Jesus Christ, we will never truly experience Christmas. Mary Southerland | Experience Christmas celebrates a similar moment for us – God breaking through to our world. In a feeding stall of all places. He will not leave us in the dark. He is the pursuer, the teacher. He won’t sit back while we miss out. So He entered our world. He sends signals and messages: H-o-p-e. L-i-f-e. Max Lucado, Because of Bethlehem This season, keep your eyes and heart open for unexpected ways that God will reveal to you the hope of Christmas. Jack Countryman | Hope Wonderful counselor and heaven father, guide us to see the true meaning of the gifts we have and that we share this Christmas. D. Duane Engler, 40 Prayers for Christmas | Sharing The holy magic that filled that lonely stable so long ago still fills the air of Christmas today. Mary Hollingsworth | Miracles Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childish days; that can recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth; that can transport the sailor and the traveller, thousands of miles away, back to his own fire-side and his quiet home! Charles Dickens | Charles Dickens Quotes Christmas has been, as for many, something of a challenge to find the best way of being together across distance and differences. The biggest difference and perhaps distance has been between the family and the rituals of Christmas at home and then Christmas and its message in church – which speaks of poverty as well as generosity. Robin Morrison, Christmas Poems | Generosity At Christmas we decorate our trees with festive lights and ornaments. But the real “tree” in the Christmas story wasn’t beautiful at all; it was a cruel instrument of execution, used to bring about the death of God’s Son. Greg Laurie, Red The Color of Christmas: 15 Favorite Christmas Messages | Beauty Thanksgiving, at least in the U.S., leads directly to the Christmas holiday where gifts are given to friends and family as an expression of heartfelt love and appreciation. Devin D. Thorpe, 925 Ideas to Help You Save Money, Get Out of Debt and Retire A Millionaire So You Can Leave Your Mark on the World | Thanksgiving Every Christmas a thousand, thousand preachers ask if we will make more room for Jesus than the Bethlehem innkeeper of long ago ever did. Les Norman; Pilar Norman, Never Have A Minute To Call Your Own: Well, Now You Do | Words of Faith But everywhere throughout the world – throughout this war that covers the world–there is a special spirit that has warmed our hearts since our earliest childhood – a spirit that brings us close to our homes, our families, our friends and neighbors – the Christmas spirit of “peace on earth, good will toward men.” It is an unquenchable spirit. Franklin Roosevelt | Franklin Roosevelt Quotes Now, granted, the Christmas tree doesn’t have “everlasting life” just because it is evergreen, but it does represent that to us. It is a symbol of life. Patricia Meyers, 70 Extraordinary Object Lessons for Home School and Sunday School | Life | One of my favorite Christmas traditions is attending the Candlelight Christmas Eve service . . . Shari Howerton, Breaking the Chains | Impact Of Christmas Shoes Song During the legendary Christmas truce of 1914, English and German soldiers stopped fighting one another, met in the “no man’s land” between their armies, traded goods, sang Christmas carols, and even played soccer. Joshua Nickel, The Reign of Grace and the End of Sin in Your Life | Music So during this Christmas season, let us take comfort in Him–and always. Julia Audrina Carrington, Comfort for Today–A Book in Honor of Christmas | Expressions of God Is it an acceptable boundary to simply send a Christmas card and ignore a friend for the rest of the year? Jeffrey Dawson, Boundaries: Line Between Right And Wrong | Friend Christmas – that magic carpet that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance – a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved. Arnold Westcott | Prayer Once you put your Christmas tree up, wrap any presents you have and put them under the tree; this will take some of the stress out of last minute wrapping and also looks nice under the tree. Catherine Pulsifer | Stress Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without mince pies. Rosanne Hewitt-Cromwell, Like Mam Used to Bake | Funny As this is one of the most anticipated meals of the year, a little bit of planning will help to relieve the stress that surrounds producing a Christmas turkey dinner. Sheila Kiely, Gimme The Recipe | Words of Encouragement Christmas can become overly expensive if you let it. Remember a homemade gift is not only nice, but also says, “I love You” more than anything else. Catherine Pulsifer | Love You can paint cookies to make wonderful decorations for Christmas or other holidays. Whether you are looking for a fun project with the kids or just want to impress the neighbors, try painting cookies. Dennis Weaver, Dennis. Mrs. Claus’ Christmas Cookies | Children Christmas brings many pleasures; from tree trimming, to special music, exhanging gifts, good food to name only a few. Take time in this busy season to remember the reason for the season – the birth of Jesus Catherine Pulsifer | Birthday Quotes To be a parent who is unable to provide a Christmas is heartbreaking. We all need to share in making a Christmas for everyone. Rather than that one extra gift, give the money to your church, to an organization that provides for those less fortunate. By helping someone else you will realize the true meaning of Christmas. Catherine Pulsifer | Helping Others Christmas can be a maze of commercialism if we let it. Instead, let’s make it a moment of clarity in which we view our sometimes confusing and threatening world against the back drop of God’s gift to us: the Prince of Peace who was announced by angels on that original ‘midnight clear’. David Jeremiah | Time Christmas is a charming and memorable season for children, and it is perfectly reasonable for well-informed adults to enjoy cribs, candles, and carols, decorated trees, presents, and family feasts. It is not possible, however, to be a well-informed adult believer without adding to the value of the Christmas celebration by searching for the deeper meaning of the gospels, a meaning that is beyond the comprehension of young children. Noel Cooper, Gospel Overtures: The Message of the Christmas Stories in Matthew and Luke | We can be an influence for what is good and right and wonderful about Christmas! We can focus on the fact that a special holiday is set apart and that time gives us the opportunity to proclaim the Christ that came and died for us!J S Brandon, Get rid of the ‘Bah! Humbug!’ Attitude This Christmas: A Message for Christians | Opportunity But I became convinced that if you drill down to its core, Christmas is based on a historical reality – the incarnation: God becoming man, spirit taking on flesh, the infinite entering the finite, the eternal becoming time-bound. Lee Strobel, The Case for Christmas | EncouragingFor it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself. Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol If I could wish a wish for you, it would be for peace and happiness not only now, but for the whole year through! Catherine Pulsifer, My Christmas Wish To YOU | Happiness Christmas was all about God’s gift to man, and His peace, as well as ours.Carolyn Molica, WINGS: A Journey in Faith from the Earthly to the Heavenly | Positive As you open your Christmas presents, open your heart to Christ’s presence.Miriam Kinai, Boxed Set 1 Quotations | Inspirational Sayings Christmas is more than just presents, it’s love and harmony. Julie Hebert | All That is a Christmas From home to home, and heart to heart, from one place to another. The warmth and joy of Christmas, brings us closer to each other. Emily Matthews | Home At Christmas play and make good cheer, For Christmas comes but once a year.Thomas Tusser | Good Christmas will always be as long as we stand heart to heart and hand in hand.Dr. Seuss | What Is The Christmas Spirit Christmas is a season not only of rejoicing but of reflection. Winston Churchill | Top Ten
(image credit www.allevents.in) OceanFirst Bank Southern Region President Vincent D’Alessandro will be one of the “Sharks” selecting the $5,000 ArtsTank winner.WHO: “Sharks” Karen Pinzolo, Executive Director, South Jersey Cultural AllianceMichael Cagno, Artist, Executive Director, Noyes Museum of Art of Richard Stockton UniversityVincent D’Alessandro, President, Southern Region, OceanFirst BankJeremy Grunin, President, Jay and Linda Grunin FoundationMeishka Mitchell, AICP, PP, VP of Community Initiatives, Coopers Ferry PartnershipWHAT: Five finalists will take part in the South Jersey Cultural Alliance’s (SJCA) first ever ArtsTank, a creative placemaking grant competition.The five municipalities participating in the contest include Camden, Runnemede, Washington, Woodbury and Ventnor.WHERE: Noyes Art Garage, 2200 Fairmount Ave. in Atlantic CityWHEN: Wednesday, May 29 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ArtsTank from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.)
A former shelter dog, Murphy, comes in for an appointment at the Humane Society of Ocean City. (Photos courtesy HSOC) By MADDY VITALEDirectors of the Humane Society of Ocean City, a no-kill shelter off Tennessee Avenue, have had to make some changes amid the COVID-19 crisis.They have had to let go of volunteers temporarily to ensure social distancing. They have had to restrict adoptions to limited appointments. And they have had to come up with creative ways to keep the 64 animals in their care active and healthy.With less staff to walk the dogs and limited time to spend playing with the cats, it has been a task.While there is nothing normal about being in a pandemic, shelter officials say, they are making it work.“We really do miss our volunteers and we know how hard it is on them, and we can’t wait until the day we can celebrate the end of the pandemic with them,” Bill Hollingsworth, executive director of HSOC, said Friday.Even though the adoptable dogs and cats do not get to see volunteers, they still get a lot of attention from staff.Phil Bellucci, HSOC operations manager, added that many of the staff members are cross-trained. Shelter staff are also animal control officers.“Everyone is doing every job. Dogs are getting a lot of attention. On Monday, we play videos for the cats,” he noted. “We are trying to come up with innovative activities, but the animals do miss the volunteers.”Currently, there are 61 cats and three dogs at the shelter, but the numbers fluctuate. The adoption fees are $100 for dogs and $60 for cats.“For a while we weren’t doing any adoptions, because we wanted to make sure we had a plan in place to protect the staff and the people who visited as well,” Hollingsworth explained.He continued, “We are doing adoptions that are limited. People have to have an appointment. They can call us and speak to the adoption counselors and there are limited days and limited times to do the visit. Our staff is all gowned up. People don’t go to the building.”Instead, visitors can meet with their prospective new pet in a special area outside of the main facility.To view animals available for adoption, people may visit www.hsocnj.org and click on the adoption link.There are 61 adoptable cats, such as this pair, to choose from at the shelter.The HSOC Veterinary Clinic is open but, like other animal care facilities at this time, clients wait in their cars until they are called on their cell phone at their appointment time.A staff member will come out to the parking lot and take your pet to see the veterinarian. Only employees are allowed in the HSOC buildings.Hollingsworth urged all pet owners to make sure to speak with their veterinarians and make sure their pets have all the medications they need, including flea and tick and heartworm medications.Last month, when COVID-19 restrictions were put in place throughout the state for employees in essential positions such as animal care, there were several meetings to plan for the change in how to manage the shelter and the HSOC Veterinary Clinic, which is next to the shelter at 1 Shelter Road.“We had to plan. We had to purchase PPE (personal protective equipment) for the animal control officers – face masks, gloves and glasses,” Hollingsworth explained.HSOC donors reached into their pockets and showed their generosity.“We had people who made online donations to purchase the equipment,” Hollingsworth said. “At first, we had to really ask for people to help us out. Luckily, we have enough. We want to thank the people who made the donations to us directly.”People continue to donate to the HSOC during the pandemic.Among others, donations came from members of the Ocean City Police Department, who paid for the shelter employees’ food at a local restaurant.The HSOC leases its space from the city in return for animal control services. Hollingsworth said the city has been supportive of them and their needs in this difficult time.“We are down $35,000. Right now, we’d be in the midst of the membership drive. We are not mailing anything out yet. We realize the predicament people are in in their own home,” Hollingsworth said.So, for now, Bellucci said, the staff is working on a virtual camp out with your pets event set for 6 p.m. on May 23. The event will be featured with live streams on the shelter’s Facebook page.“We will have the shelter dogs participating in it and musicians doing some live feeds on the Facebook page and activities you can do with your animals at home,” Bellucci said. “We are working with some of the big supporters on our events. This is going to be totally different.”While it is unknown when the pandemic restrictions will end, Hollingsworth and Bellucci stressed that the animals will continue to be well-cared for.“There are so many great organizations out there and nonprofits in the same boat as we are,” Hollingsworth noted. “Our message is to take care of yourselves. Take care of your animals and someday, we will get back to normalcy.”For more information or to donate, visit hsocnj.org. People may also visit the shelter’s Facebook page.During an interview in January, before the pandemic, HSOC Operations Manager Phil Bellucci, left, and Executive Director Bill Hollingsworth posed for a photo.
A Downing Street spokesperson said:“This morning the Prime Minister Theresa May spoke with President Erdogan of Turkey.“They discussed a number of their shared priorities. They both expressed their concerns about the escalating military action by the Syrian regime in north-west Syria putting millions of civilians at risk, and the potential for further – illegal – use of chemical weapons.“They discussed the importance of stability in the region, the need to protect civilians and to avoid a deterioration in the humanitarian situation. The Prime Minister reiterated her strong belief that the long-term stability of Syria can only be secured through a political settlement.“They also discussed the Turkish economy and the Prime Minister noted the UK is a major investor and trading partner with Turkey, and wants to see the Turkish economy flourish. The Prime Minister said the UK would welcome a visit from Turkey’s Treasury and Finance Minister to discuss ways to enhance the trade relationship between Turkey and the UK.”
On July 29th and 30th, Tedeschi Trucks Band will take to Colorado for a two-night stand at the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre as part of their Wheels of Soul tour. Their late-July appearance marks the third time in a row that Tedeschi Trucks Band will headline the epic venue nestled in the foothills of Morrison, Colorado, more if you consider their non-sequential Red Rocks appearances. Predictably, fans have been eagerly awaiting more information about who will join the group for their Red Rocks performance, as the group is known for making their Red Rocks shows special with the legendary collaborations that go down each year.Listen To Full Audio From Tedeschi Trucks Band’s 2016 Red Rocks PerformanceToday, the band announced the special guests with whom they’ll share the stage—keyboard wizard John Medeski of Medeski, Martin & Wood will join TTB on July 29th, and John Bell of Widespread Panic will serve as the special guest on July 30th. Across both nights, The Wood Brothers (featuring Medeski’s bandmate in Medeski, Martin & Wood, bassist Chris Wood) and Hot Tuna will warm up the crowd.Tickets for Tedeschi Trucks Band’s return to Red Rocks are available for purchase here, and are likely to sell out so get them while you can. For those not able to catch TTB when they roll through Colorado, you can head over to the band’s website, where you can take a peek at their extensive summer touring schedule that spans from the end of May through to the beginning of September.You can also watch TTB’s “Sly Stone” medley of “Sing A Simple Song” and “I Want To Take You Higher” from the group’s Red Rocks performance on June 13th, 2015. The video, courtesy of TTBFromTheRoad, shows the group share the stage with late and great Sharon Jones, members of the Dap-Kings (Binky Griptite, Cochemea Gastelum, Chris Davis, Mike Buckley, Saundra Williams and Starr Duncan), and Doyle Bramhall II.[Cover photo courtesy of Bill McAlaine]
Phillips Brooks House (PBH) has launched Harvard’s annual holiday gift drive — an effort to collect more than 1,000 gifts for children in Boston and Cambridge. The drive, which will run through Dec. 15, will provide books, games, toys, art supplies, and sports equipment to children, many of whose parents are impoverished, incarcerated, or homeless. Last year, PBH donated approximately 1,500 gifts to 18 agencies in Allston-Brighton, Boston, Cambridge, Dorchester, and Roxbury. Faculty, staff, and students are invited to donate gifts for children of all ages. Gifts must be new and unwrapped.In addition to gifts, PBH will accept gently used or new clothing items on behalf of the Harvard Square Homeless Shelter. Donations can be left in marked receptacles on the first floor of PBH.For more information, email [email protected]
Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) JAMESTOWN – Officials in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, and Warren Counties announced several new positive cases of COVID-19 across the region on Wednesday.In Chautauqua County, there are two new cases, consisting of a man in his 60’s and a woman in her 70’s.This brings the total number of confirmed cases to 90. There remain 257 cases under quarantine or isolation orders while there have been 71 recovered cases, 2 remain in hospitalization, and 4 fatalities. There have also been 4,008 negative test results to date.Cattaraugus County also reported two new cases; an asymptomatic woman who lives in the southeast part of the county with no contact history, and a male health care worker who also resides in the same section of the county who has known contact with COVID 19 patients. These two new cases bring the confirmed number of cases to 71. Additionally, Warren County has announced one new case of COVID-19, bringing the county total to four confirmed cases.Officials have not released any information regarding the new positive case.
By Sharon OmahenUniversity of GeorgiaLast year, 2,650 Georgians donated 194,000 hours of their time to help University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agents. They answered gardeners’ questions, taught classes and led community service projects.These volunteers are all graduates of the Master Gardener program in the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. And to honor their service to the state, Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue has declared March 17 Master Gardener Day in Georgia.Planting gardens, answering calls”Across the state, Master Gardeners will conduct special programs to celebrate the day,” said Marco Fonseca, a UGA Extension horticulturist and coordinator of the program.Some will plant trees or beautify public community centers, he said. Others will teach children about horticulture, conduct plant clinics at garden centers and help with gardening events.Statewide, Georgia has 14 Master Gardener training classes each year. To see if your county offers the program, call the UGA Extension office at 1-800-ASK-UGA1.To become Master Gardeners, volunteers are trained for 40 hours by UGA Extension experts. Then, after volunteering for at least 50 hours at their local Extension office, they become certified Master Gardeners.Knowledge is essential”The training is essential as the volunteers use their new expertise to help with a variety of gardening-related projects,” Fonseca said. “Without the training, they wouldn’t be prepared to answer questions from gardeners who either call or come into their county agent’s office.”In 2006, Georgia’s Master Gardeners answered more than 90,000 phone calls and visited more than 3,500 home gardens.”Our Master Gardeners do everything from presenting plant clinics to speaking to garden clubs and writing newspaper articles,” he said. “Master Gardener volunteerism creates a far-reaching ripple effect across our state.”Several Master Gardener groups take part in the Plant-A-Row for the Hungry program, Fonseca said. They install landscaping at Habitat for Humanity homes, build community nature trails and design demonstration gardens.When you figure in the value of their time and travel, he said, Georgia Master Gardeners donated nearly $4 million last year.Historically affectiveThe Georgia Master Gardener program began in 1979. Butch Ferree, then head of UGA horticulture, went to Washington state to learn about the popular new urban outreach program.That fall, Ferree promoted the program in metro Atlanta. Under DeKalb County agent Newton Hogg, three agents in DeKalb and Fulton counties led the first Georgia Master Gardener training. The first class graduated 140 volunteers.”We graduated more than 100 people per year for the first 15 years,” Fonseca said. “Now we average 500 graduates each year.”Over the years, he said, the program has grown from answering walk-in or phone questions in cities to a nationwide network of volunteers.
Randolph Center, VT – The Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) has announced the election of manufacturing executive David Blittersdorf, Founder of NRG Systems in Hinesburg, Vermont, to its Advisory Board. VMEC also announced the hiring of Anne Wood as Office Manager and Erin Quatrini as Marketing & Training Manager. In addition, Board Member and manufacturer Mike Rainville, Owner and President of Maple Landmark, Inc. in Middlebury, VT, has been re-elected 2008 Chairperson of the 12-member VMEC Board. Existing Board member Ed Townley, Senior Vice President and Controller of Cabot Creamery, Inc., was re-elected for another 2-year term on the Board. David Blittersdorf is Founder of NRG Systems, a global leader in wind measurement technology. David has long been an national and international leader in the promotion of energy conservation and renewable energy opportunities. Last year, NRG Systems was named a “2007 Top Small Workplace” by the Wall Street Journal and Winning Workplaces. Anne Wood joined the 17-member, not-for-profit VMEC team in December 2007. She comes to the Center after spending almost 14 years at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Vermont, with her most recent position being Associate Project Manager in the Project Management Office. Her prior experience includes 10 years owning and successfully operating a small retail sales business. Anne also worked for 7 years at the Merchants Bank in Northfield, leaving as Assistant Branch Manager. Anne will be working at the VMEC Headquarters office located on the Randolph Center campus of Vermont Technical College where the Center has been hosted since 1995. Erin Quatrini also joined the Center in December 2007 as VMEC Marketing & Training Manager. Prior to joining VMEC, Erin was a Direct Marketing Manager for Littleton Coin Company in Littleton, NH, where she was employed since 2001. Erin is a 2001 graduate of St. Michael’s College where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.###About VMECVMEC’s primary mission since 1995 has been “To improve manufacturing in Vermont and strengthen the global competitiveness of the state’s smaller manufacturers.” This is done through confidential professional consulting, one-on-one coaching and public/onsite workshops to help Vermont’s approximately 2,000 small and medium sized manufacturers increase their productivity, improve their manufacturing and business processes, reduce costs, identify and adopt new growth strategies, and improve their competitiveness. Through the VMEC Process Strategies Group (PSG) business unit established in early 2006, VMEC is bringing its proven process and strategy expertise to a number of non-manufacturing sectors in Vermont, including healthcare, higher education, government, and financial services.Visit www.vmec.org(link is external) for more information.