HomeWeekend Wrap-UpGoats, Goats, Goats: Weekend Wrap-Up

Goats, Goats, Goats: Weekend Wrap-Up

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WESTFORD — Welcome to the Aug. 29 edition of Weekend Wrap-Up. Here, we highlight the most important news you may have missed this week in Westford.

VIDEO: Conservation Trust hires goats for pilot program

The Conservation Trust recently hired goats to protect Westford’s native flora in a new pilot program that cleared its first section of land last week.

The trust worked with Central Mass Goat Rental, based in Lunenburg, to clear invasive species on a section of conservation land off of Grey Fox Lane. The goats were delivered on Aug. 2 and were removed on Aug. 9.

As the trust aims to limit the impact of invasive species in the region, an approximately  half-acre section of wooded area was fenced off – with seven goats placed within the enclosure. These goats, according to the Trust, clear the invasive species down to its roots.

Stony Brook Student selected to play on Team USA

As students prepare to return to the classroom, one student is preparing to represent her country on the court.

Hailey Campbell, a soon-to-be Stony Brook Middle School seventh grader was one of 10 girls selected to play futsal on the 2010 birth year national team.

Campbell was selected after a series of tryouts in Kansas City, where she was pitched against 30 other hopefuls vying for the position. She is the sole New England representative on the team.

“I was super nervous because it was my first year doing [futsal], and I didn’t know what to expect. But as soon as I got through the first five minutes, it felt more like a normal practice, which really relaxed my nerves,” she said.

Cam hopes to continue playing throughout high school, but is unsure whether or not she will pursue a life-long career in the sport. In the meantime, Campbell looks forward to representing her school, town and country on the team.

“It is a big deal to be representing my country. It feels really amazing,” Campbell said.

Westford firefighters assist brush fire response at Breakheart Reservation

Westford’s Fire Department has been called to aid in a wildfire response at Breakheart Reservation in Lynn and Saugus.

Dunstable, Tyngsboro, Billerica, Chelmsford and Bedford firefighters were deployed, along with Saugus Fire Department to extinguish multiple fires at the 652 acre reservation.

The reservation is one of many areas in the state experiencing heightened fire risk due to ongoing drought conditions. Investigators note these fires are ‘suspicious,’ noting a lack of lightning in the area.

The fires, which began on Aug. 16, have forced the reservation to close until at least Wednesday, according to the Department of Conservation and Recreation. The fire has impacted over 75 acres of land, according to the Westford Fire Department.

The department is continuing to urge caution among residents when using an open flame outdoors. Multiple brush fires have been extinguished in Westford alone, with over half a dozen in East Boston Camps and others scattered throughout town.

Day School student receives award from Rep. Arciero

After receiving national acclaim for a recent project at Westford’s community garden, a Day School student received an award from Rep. James Arciero for his work.

After recently receiving the President’s Environmental Youth Award for his work on sustainability within the garden, Rep. James Arciero presented Rahul Ram, a sixth grade Day School student with an official citation.

“I look forward to being involved as you move forward,” Arciero told Ram. “This is all very cool stuff.”

Ram hopes to continue his work throughout the school year, while exploring new ideas as he continues to experiment.

“I’m going to continue to do this, I hope to automate hydroponics in some way,” said Ram. “Of course, new ideas are going to come up at some point.”

He continued, “I also just wanted to thank the Westford Community Garden for giving me this idea.”

Westford Police Chief Chambers, Lt. Gendron reflect on youth academy

After hosting its inaugural youth academy last week, members of the Westford Police Department reflected on the impact and future of the program.

Throughout the academy, students had the opportunity to visit TD Garden, the Massachusetts State Police Marine Unit, learn CPR and participate in a variety of physical fitness activities.

“As we watch other communities develop these things ,we were able to cherry pick from different things,” Westford Police Chief Mark Chambers told WestfordCAT. “I think, maybe doing a little more of what police actually do is [our plan]. It’s great to show them all of the fun stuff we have access to, but I think we need to keep a more local focus on it.”

He continued, “But I do think it’s important to strike a balance between like, movie time and what we really do. It’s not always fun and games.”

Ultimately, organizers hope their community outreach programs builds trust among law enforcement and the community.

“We want them to know who we are and we want people comfortable with what we do,” said Chambers. “If we can build that relationship with the parents and the kids it makes it a lot easier, so we’ll see where it goes.”

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Ben Domaingue
Ben Domainguehttps://www.clippings.me/bendomaingue
Ben Domaingue has previously worked at newspapers in New Hampshire and is the Managing Editor covering Westford. He’s passionate about community journalism, photography and hiking. Email him at bdomaingue@westfordcat.org.