July 13 fireworks & July 7 concert

Head to The Loop on July 13 (postponed from July 6) for the city’s annual Independence Day festivities, including fireworks! Oh, sure, it’s after the Fourth, but don’t let that stop you.

The event runs from 5:30-10pm and includes live music, games, food trucks, kids’ activities, giveaways and more. Fireworks are set to shoot skyward at 9:30pm.

Keep the patriotic vibes going July 7 at 2:30pm with the Red, White and Blue Festival Concert at the Methuen Memorial Music Hall at 192 Broadway. This free event includes a patriotic sing-a-long and recognition of U.S. military personnel. Info: mmmh.org.

July 4 event at our oldest cemetery

The annual reading of the Declaration of Independence will take place July 4 at 10am at Meetinghouse Hill (located across from the entrance to Holy Family Hospital). All are welcome!

The Methuen Historical Society is asking Methuen residents – individuals and families – to participate in the reading. On a first-come basis, people will be given a small section of the Declaration to read. Anyone who is interested in taking part can e-mail info@methuenhistoricalsociety.org.

After the reading, Meetinghouse Hill Cemetery – Methuen’s oldest cemetery – will be open for browsing and tours. What a wonderful way to honor the 47 Revolutionary War soldiers of Methuen who are buried here! The cemetery will be open until noon.

Forest Lake is now open!

Enjoy a day in the water with your toes in the sand … right here in Methuen! Forest Lake opened June 26. Hours are 10am-7pm daily. A day pass costs $10 per vehicle, a season pass is $50 and both can be purchased (credit card, check or money order) at the lake. Open to Methuen residents only; drivers must show driver’s license and vehicle registration to enter. Info: cityofmethuen.net or call the Rec Department, (978) 983-8590.

Free Playground Program starts July 1

The Rec Department’s annual Playground Program kicks off Monday, July 1. It’s free for Methuen residents ages 5 and up, and is overseen by high school leaders. Kids can join in the fun Mondays to Fridays during the summer from 9am-1pm for fun games, crafts and activities. No pre-registration is required, but parents must sign their child in/out every day. Playground locations are the Marsh Grammar School, Comprehensive Grammar School and the Gill Avenue Park.

The Rec Department offers a wide variety of programs for Methuen kids. See the full list at methuenma.myrec.com.

Tennis courts to close temporarily

Methuen High School’s tennis courts will be closed as of the last day of school (currently June 12). A major renovation is taking place in that space including a renovation of tennis courts, the addition of pickleball courts and a re-design of the baseball field, plus additional parking at MHS’ bus loop. The estimated date of completion for the courts is October 2024.

Fun Field Day Cookout on July 27

The John Hancock Masons and Methuen Rotary Club are teaming up for a Fun Field Day Cookout that’s sure to light up the sky!

In addition to food, a DJ and fun activities, there’s a massive fireworks show planned for 9pm. The event starts at 5pm at Camp Y Wood, 58 Liberty St., Salem, N.H. Be sure to bring a cooler, water shoes, towel, folding chairs and bug spray. All proceeds benefit Methuen Public Schools’ Unified Sports. Tickets cost $30 per person (kids 12 and under admitted free) and may be purchased by calling Rich Dooley at (978) 807-4997.

New season at our Music Hall

A new season of sensational music – in a historic venue – is about to kick off!

Here’s what’s coming up:

July 3: Meg Cutting of Chicago will perform an assortment of music from America and Europe.

July 7: Red, White and Blue Festival Concert. It’s the annual free patriotic sing-a-long and recognition of U.S. military personnel! Doors open at 2:30pm.

Unless otherwise noted, doors open at 7pm; shows start at 7:30pm. Adults, $15; students (6 & up) $10; children 5 and under, free. Tickets can be purchased online: mmmh.org.
Methuen Memorial Music Hall is located at 192 Broadway.

River cruises have set sail

The Methuen-based Clean River Project’s River Cruises have set sail and run most Saturdays and Sundays during the summer. Float along the Mighty Merrimack and learn about CRP’s 20-year history of positive environmental impact. Discover the river’s history and enjoy music, dancing and singing onboard. Tickets are $25 and $35. For schedule and to purchase tickets, visit Cleanriverproject.org

Tenney Class of ’74 reunion in the works!

A 50th reunion for Tenney High’s Class of 1974 is set for Sept. 28 at the Hilton Double Tree Inn on River Road Andover. The starts at 6pm and includes a DJ, raffles and trivia. Tickets cost $60 per person and payment is due by Sept. 13. For tickets and info, call Rhoda LaTorre at (508) 560-3413 or Gloria at (978) 808-4225. Discount room rates are available for a limited time.

Pollard’s clothing & food drive is Sept. 7

Pollard Funeral Home’s annual Food and Clothing Drive to benefit Lazarus House is set for Sept. 7 from 9-11am at 233 Lawrence St. They will be accepting bottled water, canned goods and boxes of cereal and pasta. Acceptable clothing and household items include bedding, clothes and shoes, bikes, household goods, suitcases, seasonal decorations, pots and pans and (new) toys.
Just pull up and volunteers will remove donations from your vehicle.

Methuen Day set for Oct. 5

Save the date! Methuen Day is set for Saturday, Oct. 5 in downtown Methuen. Expect music, dancing, food and much more – celebrating all that’s GOOD in our city.

Brush pickup is now on recycling day

On April 22, the Department of Public Works announced an adjustment to brush/branch pickup. Those items will now be picked up on your recycling day.

“Brush/branches must be TIED IN BUNDLES of no more than 4 feet in length and 4 inches in diameter,” per a flyer. Pickup is weather permitting, and will run through Nov. 30. Residents can also drop off leaves, yard waste and brush at the Transfer Station, 50 Huntington Ave. Visit the DPW page on the City of Methuen website for hours.

Did you know that Methuen senior citizens are allowed FREE disposal of up to four bulk items per calendar year (curbside pickup or drop off at the Transfer Station)? Seniors must provide proper ID and proof of residency.

Time to sign up for school!

Registration is now open for the following educational programs for the littlest learners:

St. Monica School Early Childhood Program: Currently accepting applications for their PreK 3 and PreK 4 programs for fall 2024. The Catholic grammar school is located at 212 Lawrence St., Methuen. For a tour, call (978) 686-1801.

Chapel School: For children 2.9-5 years old, there is a 2-, 3- and 5-day preschool program with customizable days. There are also half-day classes and extended-day classes. Chapel has been in Methuen for 60-plus years. Info: (978) 689-8414. Chapelschoolmethuen.com.

Disabilities group seeks volunteers

If you are a current resident of Methuen who is interested in advocating to make this a great place to live for people with disabilities by ensuring our city is accessible and in compliance with ADA standards, consider joining the Methuen Disability Commission.

To apply, go to the website cityofmethuen.net and search for “Talent Bank application.”

American Legion re-opens

American Legion Post 122 in Methuen is again open for business. The lounge has been completely renovated and there is no smoking. The hall is open for rentals. To find out more, contact the bar manager at (978) 687-9724.

Mobile Markets open to all

The Methuen YMCA, 129 Haverhill St., hosts a monthly Mobile Market where fresh groceries are distributed to community members. Held in partnership with the Greater Boston Food Bank, the markets run from 10-11:30am and are set for June 22, July 27, Aug. 24 and Sept. 28. Please bring bags or boxes to carry food.

The AgeSpan Mobile Market offers fresh food and nonperishable grocery items the third Tuesday of each month from 10am-noon at the Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence, 136 Water St. This is free to Merrimack Valley residents of all ages. First come, first served. Info: AgeSpan.org.

Backpack program re-stocking shelves

The Methuen Schools Backpack Program recently announced they’re running low on a few popular items. Can you help re-stock their shelves?

Food-filled backpacks are given out each Friday to needy students referred to the program, helping to sustain them over the weekend.

The program is in need of cereal; microwavable soup, mac and cheese and Chef Boyardee; snack bars (granola bars, cereal bars, etc.); fruit cups; and peanut butter and jelly (plastic jars please).

Donations can be purchased and dropped off at any of the Methuen Public Schools, Central Office (located at Branch Street) or use the program’s convenient Amazon Wish List (search MPS Food Backpack Program) have food delivered directly to their food pantry. Gift cards are also greatly appreciated.

Y invites you to My Kids Closet

My Kids Closet at the Methuen YWCA is a great place to donate unwanted, good-condition clothing. It’s a free clothing exchange for families, with items ranging in size from 2T to 14. Register for a 15-minute time slot to shop or to drop off items by calling (978) 683-5266.

Needed: Canes, walkers, wheelchairs

The Methuen Senior Activity Center has resumed its durable-equipment loan program on a limited basis. Methuen seniors can borrow equipment temporarily as a cost-saving measure. Do you have a good-condition walker, wheelchair, cane, tub seat or other items that a senior in need could use? To make a donation, call (978) 983-8825.

Adult ed offers language, GED help

Do you want to take ESOL classes to improve your English language skills or Adult Basic Education (ABE) classes to prepare to pass the HiSET or GED to obtain high school equivalency?
Registration at the Dr. Shirley Forrest Callan Methuen Adult Learning Center, 10 Ditson Place, Methuen, is ongoing and by appointment so call (978) 722-6067.

Classes include: Beginning ABE, Intermediate ABE, Fast Track Math, Beginning ESOL, Intermediate ESOL and ESOL.

All classes are free and funded by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Methuen Public Schools and the City of Methuen.

Methuen Public Schools is hiring

Looking for a job where you are on the same schedule as your school-age child? Methuen Public Schools may be the place for you! Wanted are program assistants, crossing guards, food service staff, cafeteria monitors as well as teachers and other staff. For a full slate of job opportunities in the district, visit Methuen.k12.ma.us.

AgeSpan offers caregiver support

Taking care of loved ones can be challenging! AgeSpan, previously known as Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, offers a variety of family caregiver support groups, both virtually and in person.

*Caregivers Caring for Those with Memory Loss: Virtual and in-person options. Contact Cindy Hession Richard at chession@agespan.org for info.

*Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Third Thursday of the month), 11am-noon.

Contact Cindy Hession Richard at chession@agespan.org for info.

*General Caregiver Support: Virtual program offered the third Thursdays of the month, 1-2pm. Contact Lyn Brennan at lbrennan@agespan.org.

Order birth, death certs online

You can now order copies of birth, death and marriage certificates online, through the City Clerk’s Office. In general, cost is $10 per certificate, plus mailing. There are also options for the public to pick up the certificates for free, and to pay by credit card, debit card, check or money order.

Go to cityofmethuen.net, hover over “How Do I,” then click “Birth, Marriage, Death Certificate.”

Unsure whether the certificate you need is on file in Methuen? Call the office before ordering! (978) 983-8515.

Meals on Wheels drivers needed

It’s called one of the best volunteer “jobs” you can have!

AgeSpan, formerly known as Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley and North Shore, is seeking drivers and on-call volunteers to support their home-delivered meals program. This is a way to help older adults who are isolated at home and continue to be hard hit by the lingering effects of COVID.

Volunteer drivers deliver a daily nutritious meal as well as a friendly face and smile. The role requires a three-hour commitment, a valid driver’s license, and background check.
AgeSpan provides a stipend and free training for adults aged 18 and over. This is a fantastic opportunity for retirees, couples, friends, and family members to help out adults age 60-plus and those with disabilities.

Learn how you can make a difference by calling Joyce Dastou at (978) 651-3021 or e-mail jdastou@agespan.org.

State offers 24/7 mental-health help

Are you or someone you care about struggling with mental health or substance use? In crisis, or working hard to prevent one? It can be difficult to know where to turn for help.

The new Massachusetts Behavioral Health Help Line connects you directly to clinical help, when and where you need it. It’s free, it’s available 24/7, and real-time interpretation is available in over 200 languages. The helpline can help individuals and families navigate the behavioral health system and access treatment, including mobile crisis services.

Visit www.masshelpline.com or call or text (833) 773-2445 for support.

New life for old eyeglasses

The Methuen Lions Club has partnered with Nevins Library to help those in need of eyeglasses.

A drop-off center for used prescription and reading glasses has been set up at the library, in the room to the left of the main desk. For nearly 100 years, Lions members have worked on projects designed to prevent blindness, restore eyesight and improve eye health and eye care for hundreds of millions of people worldwide.

To join the Lions, call Dave at (978) 398-5313.

VFW invites you to play pool, bingo, etc.

The Arnold Greenwood VFW Post 8349 invites the public to socialize and have fun at their 26 River St., hall. They are open Tuesday to Sunday from noon until the bartender’s discretion.

Tuesday is Dart Night, Wednesday they play the card game 45s, Thursday is for free pool tables and Friday is 3-card bingo with Joe and Linda. On Saturday at 2pm, the Auxiliary raffles off gift cards from Methuen merchants and restaurants. Sunday is Chill Day, where the public can come down watch sports on TV with friends.

The VFW supports veterans and other local residents.

The post’s hall is available for rent. VFW members get a discount.

To find out more, stop in or call (978) 687-9465.

Hope for loved ones of addicts

The Circle of Hope, a support group for family members dealing with a loved one suffering from addiction, meets Mondays at Sanborn Hall (same building at the Methuen Police Station) at 6:30pm. For more information or resources, please call Phil Lahey at (978) 886-2949. Not ready for a group meeting? Call Phil to talk privately.

Volunteer drivers needed

Be a spot of brightness for a senior, and volunteer to drive!

The Northern Essex Elder Transport Program (NEET) provides rides for seniors from their homes to medical appointments. Can you volunteer to drive 6 to 8 hours a month? Mileage reimbursement and supplemental insurance provided. Call (978) 388-7474 to learn more about this flexible volunteer opportunity. Info: driveforneet.org.

Old meds, needles can go to station

You can dispose of your prescription medication and needles at the Methuen Police Department anytime of the day or night. There are two drop boxes located in the police station lobby that the public can access 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The MedReturn Drug Collection Unit allows citizens to drop off expired or unwanted prescription medications (no loose pills, please). The Sharps Container Disposal Unit lets you dispose of used needles in a safe manner. Simply bring your sharps in a safe container for disposal or there are containers located next to the box.