Cranston Chatter

Posted 3/24/21

By MERI R. KENNEDY Cranston Hall of Fame For the past 40 years, the Cranston Hall of Fame has inducted over 200 people into its ranks. And it is back on track to induct a brand new class of 2021. The induction ceremony will take place again at the Alpine

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Cranston Chatter


Cranston Hall of Fame

For the past 40 years, the Cranston Hall of Fame has inducted over 200 people into its ranks. And it is back on track to induct a brand new class of 2021.

The induction ceremony will take place again at the Alpine Country Club, with the event planned for Friday, Oct. 15.

Nomination forms can be found on the Cranston Public Schools website,, under the “Culture” tab. The site also includes ticket information for the induction ceremony.

The Hall of Fame honors graduates of Cranston’s high schools who are in successful positions within their chosen fields and have made a significant contribution to their communities. Honorees must have graduated in 2011 or earlier.

The deadline for this year’s submissions is Wednesday, April 14. Forms can be returned by mail to Cranston Hall of Fame Foundation, P.O. Box 3704, Cranston, RI 02910-0704.

CCAP Chip for Charity golf tournament

Save the date – CCAP has announced plans to hold its 2021 Chip for Charity golf tournament on Wednesday, Sept. 15, at Harbor Light Golf Club in Warwick. Sponsorships and foursomes are available. For more details, contact CCAP’s Lee Beliveau at 401-562-8353 or

As a nonprofit community action program, CCAP needs to raise funds to assist families it serves. A large number of families CCAP serves have lost their jobs, suffered an illness, or experienced a different type of crisis, usually through no fault of their own. Last year, CCAP touched the lives of more than 40,000 people and provided over $1.2 million in uncompensated services.

Chip for Charity, presented by Neighborhood Health and Mutual of America, is CCAP’s largest fundraiser during the year to benefit its programs and services.

Focus on mental health

NAMI Rhode Island is the state affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. It offers an array of education and training programs and services for individuals living with mental illness, family members, schools, providers, and the general public. These programs draw on the experience of individuals with mental illness and family members who have learned to live well with their illnesses and are eager to help others, as well as the expertise of mental health professionals and educators.

Programs are free and virtual. For more information on programs or becoming a volunteer, visit, call (401) 331-3060 or email

Free vaccination card lamination at Staples

Rhode Island residents looking to protect their COVID-19 vaccination card can do so for free at Staples. Until April 3, the company is offering free lamination services.

To take advantage of the offer, residents only need to bring their card to a staples store after getting their second dose of the vaccine. The code for the coupon is 81450.

There are Staples stores at 4000 Chapel View Blvd., suite 300, in Cranston, and 1276 Bald Hill Road, Unit 15, in Warwick.

Outdoor Storytime program at library

The Cranston Public Library is piloting an in-person, outdoor Storytime program at William Hall Library beginning on April 5 from 10:30 to 11 a.m. This eight-week Storytime will be limited to pre-registered households and will be best suited to children ages 3-5, though younger and older siblings are welcome to attend.

All attendees will be assigned a spot on the front lawn (bring a blanket for comfort and an umbrella for shade) and will be asked to keep their physical distance from other participants. All adult attendees and children over 2 years of age must wear a mask for the duration of the program. In case of inclement weather, the program will be held virtually on the library's Facebook page with no option to move indoors.

For more information, contact Elise at 781-2450, ext. 204, or To register, visit

Cranston Y to offer Summer Enrichment Camp

The Cranston YMCA will be hosting Summer Enrichment Camp and is looking forward to bringing all of its amazing enrichment opportunities back into the Y. Students will have the opportunity to swim, play outdoors, take part in STEM activities, do arts and crafts, and so much more.

The camp will run for 10 weeks, beginning June 28 to July 2. The final week will run from Aug. 30 to Sept. 3, pending the return date for Cranston Public Schools.

The cost for YMCA members is $245 per week, while the cost for non-members is $300 per week. Financial assistance is available.

For more information, contact Jess Tate, camp director, at

Images of Cranston

On Thursday, April 15, from 3-4 p.m., the Cranston Public Library will explore vintage images of Cranston, including trains and trolleys, businesses, buildings, storms and a trip to the brewery.

This online event is free and open to the public. For more information and to register, visit and check out the “Events” page. Zoom meeting details will be emailed the day before the program.

Rotary scholarships

Once again, the Cranston Rotary Club will award four scholarships to one graduating senior from each of the four Cranston high schools. Students are invited to apply for the scholarship before April 30. The scholarship awards will be announced in May. The financial amount varies each year depending upon the success of the club’s fundraising efforts.

All applications will be reviewed by a committee of Rotarians. To download a scholarship application, visit

CCAP Emergency Housing Assistance

The Comprehensive Community Action Program’s Emergency Housing Assistance program assists individuals/families living in Cranston, Coventry, Scituate and Foster with back rent, security deposits, mortgage assistance, late fees associated with back rent or mortgage, moving costs and utilities. Funding is limited. For more information, call CCAP at (401) 467-7013 or visit

Mortgage assistance program

Residents of Cranston at risk of losing their home as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic may be eligible to receive up to six months of mortgage assistance.

The Cranston CDBG Emergency Mortgage Assistance Program assists low-income Cranston families earning under 80 percent of the median income.

For more information, call CCAP’s Social Services at 467-7013.

RI Housing offers loans

RI Housing’s Hardest Hit Fund Rhode Island (HHFRI) program is offering zero-interest, forgivable loans to eligible Rhode Island homeowners who became unemployed or underemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and are struggling to make their mortgage payments.

Loan proceeds may provide eligible homeowners with up to six months of mortgage payment assistance and a mortgage will be recorded on the homeowner’s property. Learn more about the loan program and eligibility at

Email account creation assistance

The Cranston Public Library will assist community members who do not currently have an email account in obtaining an email address needed to register for COVID-19 vaccination.

This service is available at the Central Library, 140 Sockanosset Cross Road, every Tuesday and Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. Librarians will be available to help patrons create their first email account and navigate COVID-19 vaccine information.

Patrons are asked to call the Reference desk at (401) 943-9080, ext. 3, to register.

Patrons must have a cell phone and must bring that phone with them. If they do not have a cell phone, they may use the phone number of a trusted person for the email account creation.

For more information, visit

Tax time at CCAP

CCAP’s VITA Preparation Assistance Program provides free tax preparation for individuals and families earning less than $60,000.

Last year, CCAP’s VITA program filed over 1,000 federal tax returns, helping Rhode Island families receive $2 million in refunds without any cost. The program’s volunteers are trained and certified by the IRS and will help file federal and state income taxes. IRS e-file is the most accurate, safest and fastest way to file a tax return. Refunds can arrive in as little as 10 days.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, all returns will be done via drop-off. Call (401) 467-7013 for more information.

ARTS Scholarships available

Applications are now available at for the 2021 ARTS Scholarships Program. This year marks the program’s 25th anniversary! Since 1996, the program has awarded 700 arts scholarships.

The ARTS Scholarships 2021 program, sponsored by The Textron Charitable Trust and the PPAC Annual Fund Donors with support from WPRI 12, awards up to $500 in financial assistance to each of the 30 talented Rhode Island students selected as recipients. Qualified students must be age 11-14 by June 1, 2021, and reside in and attend school in Rhode Island.

These scholarships offer young artists an opportunity to participate in local summer arts education programs that will broaden each student’s experience in their chosen area of study.

Pagano Foundation scholarships available

The Lt. Jim Pagano Foundation, now in its 10th year, will again be offering $6,000 in college scholarships to graduating seniors in Cranston.

The Lt. Jim Pagano Foundation Scholarship is a nonrenewable $1,500 award to be granted to two students from Cranston High School East and two students at Cranston High School West to help defray the costs associated with attending a four-year college.

The awards are meant to assist those students who best represent the values of academic achievement, extracurricular activities, community service and well-rounded individuals with a drive to succeed.

The Lt. Jim Pagano Foundation was established in memory of the late James Pagano, a 17-year veteran of the Cranston Fire Department and a devoted family man, loyal friend and respected gentleman whose life was senselessly cut short by gun violence. The mission of the foundation is to make charitable grants to individuals, groups and organizations that improve the quality of life for children, and foster character building and a strong foundation for their future. Its work is made possible by the generous contributions and involvement from the community.

For information about the scholarship, visit or follow the foundation on Facebook.

Learn to Earn L.I.F.E. training

CCAP’s Learn to Earn L.I.F.E., or Learning Information For Everything, Training Program is a 60-hour paid life skills workshop that will cover topics not always taught in school. It is a virtual program with interactive projects and activities and is designed for participants between the ages of 14 and 24. Participants are paid $11.50 an hour.

Learn about daily living, self-care, positive relationships, housing, work and study skill as well as career education planning, goal setting and customer service. To register, call the Cranston Skills & Youth Center at 562-8325.

Cranston RSVP seeking volunteers

The RSVP Program at Cranston’s Department of Senior Services is seeking volunteers to help to deliver brown bag lunches to seniors in the community, run errands for seniors and transport local homebound seniors to medical appointments.

You must be 55 years of age or older to volunteer and a BCI is required. Mileage reimbursement is given to cover travel costs. AmeriCorps Seniors will also provide insurance protection with three types of coverage – excess accident medical coverage, excess volunteer liability insurance and excess automobile liability insurance.

If you are interested in becoming an RSVP volunteer, contact Karen Porto at 780-6159 for an interview.

Zero Isolation Program

Are you bored? Lonely? Looking for new experiences? The Zero Isolation Program may be for you.

Cranston RSVP is assisting Dr. Nicholson of Quinnipiac University School of Nursing in offering an online program to enhance social integration.

You will be able to meet new people and learn about psychosocial conditions while taking part in interactive small-group activities. Seniors 60 years of age and older participate for about 90 minutes per week for six weeks.

To express interest in participating or for additional details, contact Dr. Nicholson at (203) 582-6542 or Mindful Mondays

Mindful Monday is a weekly drop-in meditation group open to all teens 13 to 18 years old. Brief meditations are facilitated by CCAP’s Community Response Program team members. The program will be held on Mondays, on Zoom, from 4 to 5 p.m. For more information, contact Jennifer Pelkey at or (401) 318-2555.

Did you know?

The current March-November system the U.S. follows began in 2007, but the concept of “saving daylight” is much older. It’s debated who originally came up with the idea, but Benjamin Franklin appeared to have first mentioned it in 1784, when he wrote a letter to the editor of the Journal of Paris.

To submit your news from the community, email Meri R. Kennedy at This includes virtual events which should be submitted two to three weeks ahead of the event. Photos in jpg format are accepted and news can include community events, promotions, academic news and nonprofit events. Email today and see your news in our column in the Cranston Herald.

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