A Look Back: April 16

Jim Bridgman

Jim Bridgman

Published: 04-16-2024 7:01 AM

50 Years Ago

The Hampshire Area Commission on Alcohol Abuse will tonight request a lodging house license at 23-25 Graves Ave. for a proposed halfway house for recovered alcoholics. Purchase of the property would culminate an intensive campaign that began in late October to raise the funds for a halfway house, which the commission felt was the most pressing need for alcoholics in this area.

From Paris to Broadway and now Northampton! A comedy called “Cactus Flower” is coming to the People’s Institute for three performances in late April, in a Circle Players’ production, with the credentials of having been one of the most uproariously popular hits in New York for more than 2½ years.

25 Years Ago

Michael Kerns, executive assistant to Mayor Mary L. Ford since December 1997, has taken a job as an assistant town manager in Killingly, Connecticut. Kerns, 28, starts his new position on June 1, and though he is excited about the professional advancement, he said he is sorry to be leaving Northampton.

The co-owners of the 26-year-old Valley Advocate and four other “alternative” weekly newspapers say the sale of their chain to a subsidiary of the Hartford Courant sets the stage for the publications to expand technologically and geographically — and to become more “hard hitting.” No change in editorial policy or staffing is expected at the five free weeklies that are part of New Mass Media, which will continue to operate as a separate company.

10 Years Ago

The 23rd annual Extravaganja organized by the UMass Amherst Cannabis Reform Coalition was held on the Town Common Saturday afternoon. The event left little doubt as to the theme of the gathering that drew thousands of marijuana enthusiasts along with vendors, speakers, performers and political activists.

Area groups are preparing a show of support Wednesday to counter plans by members of the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church to stage a protest against Derrick Gordon, the University of Massachusetts athlete who last week became the first Division I men’s college basketball player to publicly reveal he is gay. The church, a notorious group from Kansas known for its virulent rhetoric, announced that it will be in Amherst on Wednesday.

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