Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze & Observer 02-11-2021

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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SMITHFIELD SCITUATE FOSTER GLOCESTER | VALLEY BREEZE & OBSERVER | FEBRUARY 11-17, 2021 SMITHFIELD 3 SMITHFIELD – With more than a foot of snow already piling up in February, Greenville residents will soon be seeing more of the Greenville General, which is named by Emma Casazza who won the town's Snowplow Essay Competition. Casazza, 11, and three other Smithfield youths submitted an essay for the competition, which asked for a brief explanation of the history of the Smithfield neighborhood where they live. As the winner, Casazza will name a Greenville snowplow the Greenville General. Casazza said she was inspired by Gen. Nathanael Greene, wanting a rhyming or alliterate name for the truck. For the essay, Casazza said she brainstormed interesting historic topics about Greenville, researching each. "I learned a lot I did not know," Casazza said, adding that she has a big interest in history. "I like learning about people and other historic things," she said. Casazza's essay featured a brief his- tory of Greenville, discussing theories on how it was named. One pos- sibility was that it was named after Revolutionary War Gen. Nathanael Greene and a second suggests Greenville is named for its green appearance. "I think it would be cool to have a town named after you," Casazza wrote in her essay. The essay also included Native American history about the area, which includes the Wampanoag and Narragansett tribes. In Greenville, Casazza noted that tribes used the rivers and woodlands for hunting and fishing. Casazza said Smithfield was the dream life for Native Americans. "Plenty of water, plenty of animals to eat, and plenty of wood," she wrote. Casazza also spoke about Greenville Public Library found- er William Winsor (1819-1904), who grew up and worked on the Winsor Waterman Farm and taught in Smithfield schools. Winsor Elementary School is named after Winsor, who worked at the Smithfield Savings Bank. Casazza and her mother, Alycia Casazza, said they have seen plow trucks pushing snow through the neighborhood over the past couple of weeks. With snow in the forecast for this weekend and next week, both are excited to see the Greenville General working on their neighbor- hood. Members of the snowplow essay judging team, including Town Councilor David Tikoian, Thomas Winfield of the Anderson Winfield Funeral Home, and Jacquelyn Moorehead of The Valley Breeze & Observer, said they enjoyed each essay submitted, extending a thank you to all who participated, including Levi Foster, Zachary Zira and Autumn Orgam. Essay's winner names plow the Greenville General By JACQUELYN MOOREHEAD Valley Breeze & Observer Staff Writer jackie@valleybreeze.com CASAZZA SMITHFIELD – Responding to racist and hateful graffiti found under the Route 116 overpass on the Scenic Stillwater Trails, Smithfield is hosting a virtual public forum to cre- ate a dialogue and positive change in the community. On Wednesday, Feb. 17, at 6 p.m., the public is invited to attend a vir- tual forum, titled "Race and Equality in Smithfield." The forum will be moderated by the Rhode Island Commission on Prejudice and Bias and will provide the opportunity for the Smithfield community to speak freely and respectfully about the incident and related issues, said Town Council President Suzy Alba. Leaders of the YMCA of Greater Providence, YMCA Rhode Island and the Anti-Defamation League of New England will attend as well to offer expertise and insight on how those affected, and the town, can move forward. Alba said hateful words and behaviors directed toward any individual or group is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. She said the Town Council rejects the racism and intolerance at the center of the recent incident. "This is just the beginning," Alba said. "Many of the organizations participating in our forum have also offered to host ongoing virtual workshops open to anyone in our community." Councilman Michael Lawton said other ideas are being generated as a result of the ongoing conversations with town and school leaders. "We are committed to doing what we can to help," Lawton said. In addition to the public forum, the Smithfield Youth Council will host a youth forum on Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 7:30 p.m. to discuss and share perspectives from the incident with young people. The Youth Council plans to part- ner with the National Honor Society in the spring to host a day with youth artists to paint a positive mes- sage on the concrete overpass pil- ings where the graffiti was found. To attend the Zoom meeting, fol- low the link at https://www.smith- fieldri.com/town-forum-on-race-and- equality-in-smithfield/. Smithfield schedules forums on race and equality By JACQUELYN MOOREHEAD Valley Breeze & Observer Staff Writer jackie@valleybreeze.com See FORUMS, Page 11 Library offers Pen Pal Program SMITHFIELD – Children are invit- ed to sign up for Greenville Public Library's new Pen Pal Program. Children will exchange handwritten letters with local teen volunteers from February to June. Writing letters to a pen pal is a way to practice handwrit- ing and make a new friend. Each pen pal will receive a starter kit with enve- lopes, stickers, and instructions. Contact the library at 401-949-3630 for more information. Greenville Library closed Monday SMITHFIELD – Greenville Public Library, 573 Putnam Pike, will be closed on Monday, Feb. 15, in obser- vance of Presidents Day. Call the library at 401-949-3630. 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