Harwich News

COVID Surge Straining Town Resources

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH - Over the previous 10 days, more than 150 COVID-19 cases were reported in town, Health Director Dr. Katie O’Neill told selectmen Monday night. Some 18 percent of the town’s workforce is unable to operate in person due to COVID, colds and the flu; even Town Administrator Joseph Powers reported that he has COVID. The strain of the pandemic is weighing heavily on the health department, O’Neill wrote in a...

Pickleball Expanded At The Harwich Cultural Center Gym 

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – Selectmen have approved the expanded use of the cultural center gymnasium for pickleball this winter, but the board also wants a cost analysis for the uses in the building completed by March 1. Recreation Director Eric Beebe was before the board a couple of weeks ago seeking to expand the pickleball program from three to five days a week. The program was being run on Mondays, Wednesdays and Friday fr...

HARWICH – As the town and the Harwich Conservation Trust begin planning for the ecological restoration of 44 acres in the Robert F. Smith Cold Brook Reserve next to the former fire station on Bank Street, the trust is looking for a staging area for felled trees that will be used for wildlife habitat as part of project. HCT Executive Director Michael Lach was before selectmen on Jan. 4 seeking permission to use...

Selectmen Support Amendments To MRSD Agreement

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – Language changes to the Monomoy Regional School District agreement that would reduce budget inequity by having each town pay for its own elementary school gained the support of selectmen last week. Under the present agreement the town of Harwich is subsidizing the per student cost for the operation of the Chatham Elementary School. In the agreement, school budget contributions of both towns are based...

HARWICH – Back in November when the Family Pantry of Cape Cod and The Cape Cod Chronicle learned there was an anonymous donor willing to match up to $50,000 worth of donations, the two organizations set a lofty $100,000 goal for this holiday season’s Helping Neighbors campaign. The Cape Cod community rallied around that goal and came through in a big way. Helping Neighbors surpassed its $100,000 fundraising...

After 30 Years, Town Clerk Doucette Announces Retirement

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – After serving the community for 30 years, Town Clerk Anita Doucette will retire at the end of her term in May. “It’s happening. I am not taking out my nomination papers,” Doucette said. “I love my town, my job, but I need to spend more of my time with my family. I have beautiful grandchildren and want to spend more time with them all.” Her tenure as keeper of the records for the municipality is th...

HARWICH — The Brooks Free Library’s collection of Rogers Group statues, which remain the source of one of the town’s great unsolved crimes, are back in the limelight. And this time it’s for a happy reason. At one time, the library had a collection of 69 of the valuable clay-and-plaster statuettes, which were created by artist John Rogers and mass produced by skilled craftsmen. They were found in the best parlo...

Masks Mandated In Harwich Municipal Buildings

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – The board of health has implemented an emergency order mandating that masks to be worn in all town buildings. The board also issued a public advisory recommending masks be worn in all indoor public spaces. The board met on Dec. 28 and approved the emergency mask order for town buildings effective Thursday, Dec. 30. The advisory recommending masks in indoor public spaces was effective Dec. 29. The ...

Grant Funds Virtual Science Kits For Early Childhood Program

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – The Harwich Fund has awarded a $1,000 grant to the Friends of Harwich Early Childhood Advisory Council for a virtual “science arts” discovery-based learning program for preschoolers. The council, in partnership with Cape Cod Children’s Place, will administer the grant. The grant was funded in part by a donation from the Guild of Harwich Arts to encourage arts in any form in the community. ...

Helping Neighbors Campaign Approaches $100K Goal

By: Brad Joyal

HARWICH – The holiday season edition of the Family Pantry of Cape Cod and The Cape Cod Chronicle’s Helping Neighbors campaign is charging toward its goal of $100,000. The fundraising total reached $90,070 after $12,050 was earned this past week, the fifth since the campaign began. Only $9,930 more is needed to reach the $100,000 goal, which will help the pantry purchase groceries for 2022. “We [accept] food...

Expansion Of Cultural Center Pickleball Program Proposed

By: William F. Galvin

But Selectmen Want To See Higher Fees HARWICH – Pickleball has become the fastest growing sport in town, and the recreation department is seeking to add outdoor courts and to increase additional gym time at the cultural center in the winter months to accommodate the demand for playing time. But selectmen are concerned about the costs associated with expanded use. Recreation Director Eric Beebe told board me...

Selectmen Hope To Tap Realtor To Sell Historic Schoolhouse

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – Selectmen have instructed Town Administrator Joseph Powers to develop two proposals for the historic West Harwich Schoolhouse: one to obtain a realtor to handle the sale and a second to sell the building. “Town meeting was clear, they said to sell the building,” Selectmen Chairman Michael MacAskill said. “It’s time to move on and list it with a preference for [saving the] historical facade.” West ...