Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 08-13-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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BRADY PENDERGAST, 19, reacts as a parade of cars drives by his house in North Smithfield last Saturday. Pendergast is a Special Olympics athlete who underwent open heart surgery at Boston Children's Hospital two weeks ago to correct a congenital heart defect. He said he was "overwhelmed" by the show of love and support. Below, well- wishers wave during the social distancing parade. See more photos on Page 9. BREEZE PHOTOS BY BILL MURPHY Parents begin grassroots efforts to educate children 'Learning pods' being explored to ease family strain of at-home learning With the clock counting down until the first day of school, local students and their parents are growing anxious. In Rhode Island, the state is not expected to announce its exact plans for reopening schools until next week, leaving families scrambling to prepare for the unknown while grappling with the anxiety of safely educating their children in the midst of a pandemic. As of Wednesday morning, Gov. Gina Raimondo, during her afternoon press conference, was expected to announce a likely delay of the start of the school year by a couple weeks. Amidst the uncertainty, parents' list of questions and concerns continues to grow. Will students return to school full By NICOLE DOTZENROD, LAUREN CLEM, MELANIE THIBEAULT and JACQUELYN MOOREHEAD Valley Breeze Staff Writers WOONSOCKET – When Destiny Jimenez got a part-time job work- ing at the Clinton Street Subway in 2017, she didn't think of it as a career starter. The 21-year-old city resident was pursuing singing and modeling gigs while attending high school and trying to make a little money on the side. As it turns out, that job slinging sandwiches was exactly what she needed to get her name out on a national scale. In May, Jimenez, who goes by the stage name Destiny Faith, was cast in a series of Subway television commer- cials after winning a national jingle contest for employees. The commer- cials have since aired on major net- works nationwide and have close to one million views on YouTube. "It was so unexpected," she told The Breeze last week. Jimenez, who graduated from Woonsocket High School in 2018, said she's always been interested in music as a career. Her father, Tahjinie Gonzalez, is a rap artist, and the two are working to open a music studio in Local woman stars in new Subway ad By LAUREN CLEM Valley Breeze Staff Writer lauren@valleybreeze.com As gyms struggle with the financial realities of COVID-19, some people are finding it easier to cancel their memberships than others. In North Smithfield, Myles Briggs said he was dumbfounded back in July when he went into the Dowling Village Planet Fitness and was told both he and his wife would have to pay a $58 fee to cancel their memberships. Briggs said he hadn't used his membership since February and was canceling due to concerns over COVID-19. "When I explained to him the situ- ation, they immediately said no, they couldn't do it, I had to pay $58," he said. According to corporate spokes- As gyms take COVID hit, some push back against cancellations By Valley Breeze Staff See PODS, Page 4 See GYMS, Page 6 See SUBWAY, Page 8 ©2020 THE VALLEY BREEZE Serving North Smithfield Blackstone and Woonsocket Breeze THE VALLEY FREE AUGUST 13-19, 2020 Mario's Appliances Serving Loyal Clients since 1989 (401) 765-1636 Appliance Sales & Service Refrigerators, Stoves, Space Heaters, Washers, Dryers, Dishwashers & More! 6 Month Guarantee on Parts and Labor 98 Elm St. Woonsocket, RI 02895 mariosappliances@gmail. com 30 Years in Business! Mario's Appliances Serving Loyal Clients Since 1989 (401) 765-1636 Appliance Sales & Service Refrigerators, Stoves, Space Heaters, Washers, Dryers, Dishwashers & More! 6 Month Guarantee on parts and labor 968 Elm St. Woonsocket, RI 02895 mariosappliances@gmail. com 30 years in business! NORTH SMITHFIELD AUTO BODY, INC. 1-401-762-3866 WWW.RIAUTOBODY.COM 1-401-762-3866 WWW.RIAUTOBODY.COM • FREE towing • FREE pick up and drop off

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