Around the Hamptons: Open COVID booster clinic coming to Easthampton school Nov. 30 | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children | #schools

EASTHAMPTON — The city’s Health Department is hosting a COVID-19 booster clinic on Wednesday, Nov. 30, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Mountain View School.

The boosters are bivalent and designed to protect against the original virus that causes COVID-19 and the Omicron variant BA.4 and BA.5, according to Health Department Director Bri Dupras.

“This is a great opportunity to receive the bivalent booster dose before heading into winter and the holiday season,” Dupras said in a statement.

This clinic is supported by the Southampton Board of Health and the Northampton Department of Health and Human Services.

Vaccines from Pfizer will be available for individuals ages 5 and older. The Moderna vaccine will be available for individuals ages 6 and older. Pre-registration is required.

The flu vaccine will not be available at this clinic.

To sign up for an appointment, visit: and select “COVID 2022 Easthampton Mountain View School.”

Those with additional questions should contact the Health Department at 413-529-1400, ext. 430.

Southampton celebrates bridge openingState officials Sen. John Velis, D-Westfield, Rep. Kelly Pease, R-Westfield, and Lindsay Sabadosa, D-Northampton, joined Town Administrator Ed Gibson and members of the Select Board at a ceremony earlier this month at the new $2.6 million East Street bridge, which opened on Nov. 10 after being closed for nearly a year.

The opening of the bridge, originally scheduled for this summer, was delayed twice. Construction firm MIG Corp. Inc. of Acton requested an extension due to the structural steel vendor’s inability to procure raw materials from its supplier, according to Southampton Highway Superintendent Randall Kemp. The delays shifted the completion date of the bridge from midsummer to fall.

The previous East Street bridge, which was nearly 90 years old, was demolished in December.

Kemp offered up extensive thank-yous to those involved with the project.

The project has been in the works for years as the Select Board expressed a desire to have the bridge rebuilt in 2009. A 2018 Pavement Management Report prepared by the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission also recommended a full reconstruction of East Street, identifying it as one of four roads in Southampton in the poorest condition.

He also expressed gratitude to residents and businesses for their patience in having such an important access road re-routed. The bridge crosses the Manhan River and spans a major thoroughfare that stretches from College Highway (Route 10) in Southampton to the border of Holyoke at County Road.

“The finished project is but one step in planning for Southampton’s future by incorporating pedestrian-friendly accommodations that will be expanded upon in the East Street reconstruction design to ensure that as Southampton grows, our safe, walkable areas grow as well so that we provide not for automobiles alone, but all users,” Kemp said.

The larger East Street reconstruction project is estimated to cost an additional $4 million more.

K-9 Gino awarded health care grant

Easthampton police K-9 Gino has been awarded a “Healthcare for K-9 Heroes” grant from nonprofit Vested Interest in K-9s.

With the award, the East Taunton-based organization will reimburse the Easthampton Belgian Malinois’ annual medical policy premiums and will allow Gino’s handler, Sgt. Andrew Beaulieu, the ability to use any licensed veterinarian, specialty center, or emergency hospital in the country.

Easthampton is one of four 2022 recipients from Massachusetts. Other recipients in the state include Natick police K-9 Koda, Harwich police K-9 Fritz and Rehoboth police K-9 Edo.

The grant is awarded to departments which have to raise funding to support their police dog unit, have no more than three police dogs, and have previously been awarded a vest through the nonprofit. Eligible canines need to be active on their police departments and be between 2 and 7 years old.

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