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J anuary/F ebruary 2021  ·  Volume 17  · Number 1

Going green

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Prime living



Solace and simplicity By Deborah Allard Dion Making a minister By Michael J. DeCicco

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The best for bowser By Sean McCarthy Maverick medicals By Steven Froias Decadent desserts! By Elizabeth Morse Read

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Life through a new prism By Steven Froias J anuary/F ebruary 2021 · Volume 17 · number 1

Echoing melodies By Sean McCarthy Reflections By Paul Kandarian

Going green

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On the cover: Massachusetts’ marijuana industry has gone from budding to booming in just a few short years. In Fall River, Northeast Alternatives tries to offer a wide selection of cannabis products to as expansive a market as possible. Pictured on the cover are head growers (clockwise) Kyle Bishop, Zac Cooper, Stevie Dillard, and Brad Kirkman. Learn more about how they grew their business on page 12.

January/February 2021 n Vol. 17 n No. 1 Published by

Coastal Communications Corp. Publisher and Editor-in-Chief

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Michael J. DeCicco, Deborah Allard Dion, Steven Froias, Paul Kandarian, Sean McCarthy, Elizabeth Morse Read South Coast Prime Times is published bi-monthly. Copyright ©2020 Coastal Communications Corp. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, by any means, without written permission from the Publisher. All information contained herein is believed to be reliable. Coastal Communications Corp. does not assume any financial responsibility for typographical errors in advertisements, but will reprint that portion of an advertisement in which the typographical error occurs.

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Solace and simplicity Most of us have already tidied our closets thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic that forced us into the house and made us live in our self-created chaos 24/7. Deborah A llard Dion

If you haven’t de-junked the drawer in the kitchen or the scary, overflowing garage, the New Year is a great time to declutter. But, don’t forget the mind, which can be an even messier place that no amount of disinfectant can render spic-and-span. Christina Dobyna of the Sisters of Solace – Holistic Healing Center, 700 American Legion Highway, Westport, has offered guidance in the area of decluttering, both the physical and the mental, for 2021. “There’s just stuff – always so much stuff,” said Dobyna, who runs the center along with her sister Dora Kirby. “This year, it’s emotional clutter. “I’d rather see somebody who has a clear head than a clean house,” Dobyna said. Dobyna, a Reiki master/teacher, angel therapy healer, card reader, author, and motivational speaker, has spent the last 15 years offering guidance, meditations, and spiritual healing. The sisters also run the shop and offer massage, reflexology and a host of other services. When dealing with clutter, there’s a difference between the physical and emotional. Physical clutter is what we see in our surroundings, Dobyna explained, but it “depletes our energy” and can exacerbate emotional clutter. It can make our energy “feel off.” She said we often have an attachment to


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things that we feel we must keep because they remind us of a certain time in our lives. But, sometimes hanging onto things whether clothing or mementos from high school or loved ones has the opposite effect. “It sits on you like heavy energy.” Cleaning up and cleaning out can lift that feeling and make you feel energized. “It’s time to purge – let go of what no longer suits you.”

Mental and emotional clutter can wreak havoc in one’s life, even more than household clutter She recalled cleaning out her parents’ house after they passed on and keeping only significant items, rather than containers filled with “stuff.” “They’re here. They’re in my heart,” Dobyna said. “They’re in my memories.” Clutter, she said, “is not useful. Let go. It’s not easy. It’s a process.” Having too much clutter in the home can create an energy that leads to anxious feelings. “Notice how you feel when your house is tidy,” she said.

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Mental and emotional clutter can wreak havoc in one’s life, even more than household clutter. It’s the stuff that makes us feel anxious, tired, negative, upset, and can decrease our productivity and quality of life. But, there are ways to clear that clutter that are akin to sweeping the dirt into the dust pan.

ONE Manifest what you need in life Stop doubting yourself. Tell the universe what you need and want and take steps to achieve your goals. Some may create a vision board that outlines their goals, or meditate to focus in on what exactly they want. It can be the first step in believing and working toward those goals. “Decide what you need, spell it out, and manifest it. Trust and believe that it will be out there,” Dobyna said.”

TWO Write it down Dobyna suggests daily journaling as a way to manifest what you need in your future “Journal it, say it, think it.” She said a journal can help create a place to write about your day and what went well or poorly, your goals, intentions, worries and frustrations, and anything else that comes to mind. It needn’t be pages and pages of feelings, just a few paragraphs each day. “Get it out, whatever you’re feeling,”

Dobyna said. “Write it down and get it out.” Journaling can help bring things to light and heal the mind. “Sometimes things run deep. Eventually you’re going to get to the core.”

THREE Push the positivity through your own intentions When you know you must visit a place that causes you to feel anxious, such as work or elsewhere. Dobyna suggests picturing baby pink roses streaming down in that place, which gives it “so much positive energy.” When having to deal with someone who is negative, she said to write down the person’s name on a small piece of paper and put it inside a baggie with some sugar. Doing these things may just help you feel more positive about those places and people and help you realize you create your own good or bad attitude. And, a little positive energy sent out into the universe can only help a situation.

FOUR Focus “Know when enough is enough.” Multi-tasking means that no one task is getting your full attention. Working on a single task at one time increases focus and productivity. And it can keep the mind clear and calm.

FIVE Rest “Take a break, it’s okay.” Dobyna said to create a schedule to stagger tasks, rather than try to complete too many tasks over too short a period

SIX Connect with nature Even a few minutes standing outside can change the way we feel about ourselves or a situation. Just breathing in some fresh air and getting away from the staleness of the house or noise of the workplace can help change perspective. “Spend more time outside,” Dobyna

said. “Feel the earth beneath your feet. It reconnects us and grounds us.”

SEVEN Eat the cake “Indulge yourself with what makes you happy.” Whether that be a spa day, a nap, reading a book, or eating a big piece of chocolate cake, a little self-care goes a long way. “We always hold back on what makes us happy,” Dobyna said. “We really need to do more of that.”

EIGHT Mind your own business “Stop meddling in other peoples’ lives,” she said. “It brings their burden to your shoulders.” Oftentimes, the advice isn’t wanted anyway. “You have to learn to separate from other people’s stuff.”

NINE No, just no “You have to learn how to say ‘no.’” Continuously doing things we don’t want to do can cause anxiety and steer us away from things that are more productive and pleasant.

TEN Change your mind set for 2021 “One day at a time, one thing at a time, one thought at a time. Start decluttering now to focus on goals for the New Year.” To learn more about Sisters of Solace, visit sistersofsolace.net, or visit in person each Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Hours may vary during the pandemic, so call first at 508-636-4668 or email sistersofsolace@yahoo.com for information or an appointment.

D ebor ah A ll ard D ion is a native of Fall River and a graduate of B.M.C. Durfee High School, Bristol Community College, and Bryant University. She is a Realtor at Keller Williams South Watuppa, a writer, and an animal lover. Connect at DDion@KW.com or on social media.

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through a new prism Creative people everywhere are adjusting to a new reality during the COVID-19 pandemic. For some, however, the journey to adapt and change with circumstances began even sooner. Today, Kathy Clough is a glass artist whose work transcends artisanry and reflects true artistry. But how she arrived at that place was improbable and arduous. She says she doesn’t quite know why she began collecting sea glass off New Bedford beaches back in 2015 – but nonetheless, she was soon filling vases and containers of it in her home. Clough kept collecting sea glass even as she learned in December 2015 that her mother was suffering from aggressive cancer throughout her body. By the end of January 2016, her mother’s body surrendered and she passed away. In the intervening month, Clough would slip out of St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford for a walk on the city’s West Beach (where she could still see the hospital) and continue to collect the pieces of glass nature had washed up. It was a solace as well as a respite from the toil her mother’s illness was taking on both her and her father, for whom she was functioning as caregiver. Clough continued her beach walks through that winter after her mother’s passing. More glass was accumulated. And if you think at this point in the story, while grieving for her mom, she


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had an artistic epiphany, you’d be wrong. Because before that happened, Kathy Clough saw cancer enter own life.

I have now come to realize that my journey is like that of sea glass – broken, tumbled by the sea, washed to shore, and given a second chance at life

Steven Froias

During a routine yearly examination, her doctor discovered a dark area within one of her breasts. It was concerning enough that even though her next mammogram wasn’t scheduled for another three

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months, she urged Clough to see to it right away. It was good advice. The area turned out to be a highly aggressive form of ductal carcinoma breast cancer. Though caught early, Clough still had to endure chemotherapy and two surgeries, including a partial mastectomy. “This group of angry cells,” she says, “caused a little monster to come out of me!” Something else began to come out of her, too – and that something was much more welcome. It was a spiritual and artistic awakening that finally helped her complete a journey she had already instinctively began. Kathy began to assess her life and make some changes. A new job came first. Then, she decided to become Reiki 1 certified. And then there was all that sea glass she had accumulated...

Sparkle and shine “When I started collecting sea glass,” she says, “I didn’t know why I was so obsessed with it. I have now come to realize that my journey is like that of sea glass – broken, tumbled by the sea, washed to shore, and given a second chance at life.” Transforming heartache into hope, Kathy Clough taught herself to turn that sea glass into works of art. Shy at first, she was encouraged along the way by friends to keep at it and to share it with the world. She did that at home arts and crafts get-togethers even as she continued to hone her skills and realize her vision. Soon, just as the glass had piled up in her

home, now unique creations of skill and beauty began to fill her rooms. She went from showing her burgeoning inventory at home shows to appearing at pop-up events, and then became a staple at the Acushnet Farmers Market and other South Coast fairs and festivals. Obviously, the pandemic has created another inflection point for this artist – but it’s one she is navigating safely and well. She still offers her work for sale, these days at venues where she feels secure with the safety precautions in place, like the Providence Flea. The Providence Flea is holding its annual holiday market, with 55+ local artists and artisans, makers, vintage vendors and food trucks on Sundays through December from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the all-new COVID-safe Farm Fresh RI Market Hall at 10 Sims Avenue in Providence. Clough’s work has been commissioned, too, and is in such demand that she now relies on buying sea glass from someone she became friends with through Facebook, who delivers it washed and sorted to her door. That leaves mornings for her to work and to pursue her vision. She works out of a studio in her home – which naturally has a great view out of the window through which the sun streams in. The act of creation, she says, is her Zen. And her mission is to assemble sea glass and also agate and crystal in a way that says something while also delivering good energy. Kathy Clough’s journey was fraught, but she has arrived at a good place. Sometimes, the answer to life’s questions simply wash up on the shore just waiting for someone like Kathy Clough to come along and collect it and breathe renewed life into a wondrous second act. You can see the artist’s work at Facebook.com/landandseaglassbykathy. Land and SeaGlass is a mixed medium of local SeaGlass, reiki-charged agate and crystals, and ocean-themed framed art and suncatchers.

S teven F roias is a freelance writer based in New Bedford and is a regular -contributor for The South Coast Insider and South Coast Prime Times. He can be reached at NewBedfordNow@gmail.com.

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The best for bowser Man’s best friend should be treated as such. Sean McCarthy

For many dog owners, their pet is a valued member of the family, and in most cases caring for a canine includes investments in training, grooming, and regular checkups with their veterinarian. If you think that owning a dog doesn’t require devotion and responsibility then you’re probably barking up the wrong tree. “The breed of dog you’re looking for needs to fit your lifestyle,” says Eric Letendre, who has been training dogs for more than 25 years and owns Eric Letendre’s Dog Training in Westport. “If you’re an active family or individual who likes things such as hiking, you may want a Border Collie or German Shepherd. A laid-back person may be more interested in a dog that doesn’t require a lot of exercise such as a Labrador or a Doberman.”


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Two of the primary elements to owning a dog are training and grooming. “Training makes a lot of difference in the behavior in a dog,” says Paula Andrade, co-owner of Pawlissa’s Pet Care in Westport, with Melissa Sumner. “With a trained dog I won’t have to worry about anything – she’s lovely and stable because of her training. When someone gets a puppy the first six months are very

training in the first six months can be pivotal to the development of a dog. “Training makes a huge difference,” Andrade says. “Taking a puppy to places where dogs are allowed such as a busy parking lot on a leash or standing at the end of your driveway where there’s traffic, and giving them a treat, you can teach them to be street savvy. Teach them to respond well to strangers – you don’t want

“It’s really enjoyable when you can help somebody straighten out problems with their dog ” important. If you just get a puppy and have it in your backyard and you don’t socialize it or train it then it’s not going to be able to handle certain situations. An adult dog that hasn’t been socialized could get into a grooming shop and they might freak out or get stressed or poop unless they know what to expect and they’re familiar with the situation.” Andrade recommends Eric Letendre’s Training School in Westport and says that

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them to be jumping or being obnoxious around strangers.” But Letendre claims that you can always teach an old dog new tricks. “It’s really enjoyable when you can help somebody straighten out problems with their dog,” Letendre says. “A frustrated little pet that runs around the house chewing your shoes and pooping on the floor are able to be taught commands that they’ll have for the rest of their life.

They can come when they’re called, be able to stay when someone comes into their house as well as curbing behavior problems such as eating food off of the table.

“We see things that an owner may not,” Andrade says. “Once the dog is wet and being blow dried we can find lumps, bumps and tumors, ticks and warts. We can also make sure that their nails aren’t

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groom their dogs every

6 to 10 weeks ” “Training stays with a dog for life,” Letendre says. “Every dog owner needs to learn three things – Come when you call, walk on a leash, and stay when you tell them to. If you can master these three things then you’ve got a good dog. We can also teach them things such as rolling over, and staying on a bed until you tell them to come down. We can also teach them to drop things that they may pick up.” “We train the owner, not the dog.”

Spa-niel days David Palmer, 52, of Westport currently owns a German Shepherd, Eli, with his wife Judy. Eli is their fourth German Shepherd. “German Shepherds accept you no matter what,” Palmer says. “There’s always that companionship, there’s a huge bond. I look forward to coming home and seeing my dog every day after work. He’s loyal to us and we’re loyal to him.” The Palmers have no children but they feel that gap is filled by Eli. “People have said to me, ‘You take better care of your dog then I do of my kids,’” Palmer says. “I spend more money on that dog than I do on myself. I don’t care how much it costs or what it takes, he gets the best treatment possible.” Letendre says that a dog’s progress and development depends on their motivation. “A Border Collie may be motivated by food or toys while some dogs such as a Chow may be more laid back and a little more introverted. The more motivated the easier they are to train. Some dogs are more motivated than others.” “I always put something silly around the neck of my dog,” Andrade says. “I’ve noticed that when I walk her off leash or with her collar people will say ‘Oh, she’s so cute!’ and they won’t be afraid of her.” Regular grooming also plays a part in the wellness of a dog.

going into their pads. It’s not just a pretty haircut, we will also look at their teeth and brush them. We recommend that people groom their dogs every six to 10 weeks, at least with the change of season. “A grooming will have your dog feeling like a million bucks. They’re going to feel noticeably better. We can also teach owners how to care for their dog in between visits that will benefit them.” Andrade stresses the importance of dental care for your dog. “Dental care is very important. If you don’t care for their teeth it can become very expensive to have them cleaned,” she says. “You can clean them at home once a week. If you take care of their teeth as a puppy they won’t have problems as they age.” Visiting a veterinarian on a regular basis is also considered important. A dog will need regular checkups, inoculations, and vaccinations. “There are a lot of great veterinarians in this area,” Letendre says. “You shouldn’t have trouble finding one if you do the online research.” A dog owner may also want to spay or neuter their dog to prevent them from producing unwanted puppies. But conversely, they may also want to breed their pet. “If you’re interested in breeding your dog, then do the research,” Letendre recommends. “A really great breeding program is done by a professional who knows exactly what to look for. It’s really an art and a science. If you’re going to breed it’s to enhance the breed of the dog. It requires education, it’s not just about getting a couple of dogs together and having puppies.”

Sean McCarthy has been a freelance journalist for 27 years. He lives in New Bedford.

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Echoing melodies Sean McCarthy

Jack Maravell knows as well as anyone that music brings memories that can carry us back to our youth, and he wants to give recognition to the musicians who have provided this experience.

Maravell has forged the online conglomeration known as the New Bedford Musician’s Hall of Fame. Begun more than a decade ago, this Facebook page celebrates and encapsulates an ever-growing collection of memories that could only have happened through the music being made in New Bedford and the local area. It is a format that is open to anyone willing to post and share images and anecdotes of the city’s past performers. “Live music meant a lot to people who would go out to enjoy bands every


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weekend,” Maravell says. “It was a situation where you met friends or you may have met your fiancée. After 30 years you can forget certain things, so this page may be a connection to a forgotten but enjoyable time. There may be some great memories waiting for people, something surprising or rewarding. It’s a good thing to chronicle.” Maravell points out how special live music was for people in the New Bedford area. “Live music was a part of people’s workweek – you would see a lot of the same people going to the same clubs to

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see many of the same bands,” Maravell recalls. “We would go see bands every Saturday night, that was our life back in those days. There are a lot of memories for musicians as well as the audiences.” Among the clubs of the day were Smuggler’s Den, Billy Woods Wharf, Chippy’s,

Maravell says the page has become a “treasure trove of pictures” – an opportunity for everybody, both musicians and fans

Alhambra’s, and the Bullpen, as well as the New Bedford VFW and the American Legion. When Mavarell began the page in 2009 he did so by referencing local acts such as Butch McCarthy, the Shakers, and the City Lights band. Today, the page has more than 2,000 followers. “When you start something you’re not sure if it’s going to work,” says Maravell, a guitarist, pianist, bassist, and songwriter. “It’s like writing a song – you don’t know if people are going to like it. But it’s been something that has taken off by itself. I’m not making any money off of it. It’s an historical page for the people of New Bedford.” Maravell says the page has become a “treasure trove of pictures” – an opportunity for everybody, both musicians and fans. “We’ve got pictures going back to the 1940s and 50s, pictures that children have of their fathers performing. Because of the developments in technology that began in the 70s and 80s there are more photos and videos available of performers. You don’t have to be a musician to be a part of it. Anyone can post a memory.” Although Maravell is the editor of the page he encourages all musicians and fans to post both video and anecdotal memories of their youthful heyday. “I had the idea for the Musicians Hall of Fame 30 years ago, before the Internet,” Maravell says. “There were Halls of Fame for athletes so I thought, ‘Why not celebrate the accomplishments of local musicians?’ Finding a building to post photos wasn’t feasible at the time but when Facebook came along I knew I could do it. “There’s a lot of history out there and it’s good to have a legacy.”

Good vibrations Today Maravell resides in Florida. On his resume is a 25-year stint with Beatlemania. Maravell is the editor of the Hall of Fame page and makes an effort for people to chronicle history and not just promoting current events. “This page gives us the opportunity to reminisce about our early years,” says Gary Brown, a 68-year-old guitarist based in Mattapoisett. “To be a part of that page and look back at all the photographs of other local musicians is a treat. You can look back at all of the people you used to play with in your early days. There’s a lot of history there. “It feels good to be recognized by your hometown,” Brown says. “There’s a camaraderie of people I’ve played with and the club owners we’ve played for. You came in contact with a lot of people who really enjoyed your music. I feel good that people are celebrating those days, whether it’s the musicians, the clubs or the audience.” “A lot of the time people will post something that gives you a flashback to an era, a club, or a band,” says Tommy Souza, a 69-year-old bassist and vocalist from Fairhaven who has played with The Exciters, Dave Alves, New Shoes, and Neal McCarthy. “It’s nice to recall bands and clubs from back in the day. This page provides a lot of information and memories about players from this area.” Brown says that the “New Bedford Musicians Hall of Fame” is relevant to younger musicians. “This page is an opportunity for players to learn what’s gone before them. When you look at all the young kids coming up there’s a lot of young players with a lot to learn. I think they can learn something from this page.”

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Three members of the Northeast A lternatives team pick and prune their product.

Maverick medicals

While medical marijuana and recreational cannabis dispensaries are generally thought of as a new industry, Northeast Alternatives in Fall River brings many years of experience Steven to the business. Indeed, it was founded with Froias a real purpose, which is why it is regarded as the most dedicated and is also the most awarded cannabis dispensary in Massachusetts. Poignantly, Northeast Alternatives founder and now-CEO Chris Harkins lost his mother to cancer at the age of 19. Devastated by the loss, and weighed down with firsthand knowledge of the harsh side effects and hardships that traditional cancer treatments bring, when


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î Ž

Chris’ father received a similar diagnosis years later, he believed he could find a better solution. That better solution was discovered after researching the health benefits of cannabis. Again and again, Chris kept being drawn back to the stories of people

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who were using cannabis to aid their recovery, and he became convinced of its medicinal value. Wanting to share his newfound knowledge with the public, Chris began building a partnership that would become Northeast Alternatives. He reached out to his cousin Richard Rosier, now co-owner and CFO, cultivated silent partners, and then added Kyle Bishop and Zac Cooper from Colorado to the leadership team, along with cultivators and longtime friends, Stevie Dillard and Brad Kirkman. Together, the cultivation team has well over 50 years of experience and has won over 20 awards. Their highly experienced kitchen and lab staff allow them to make the best concentrates and edible products on the market today.

A dvertisement were voted South Coast Magazine’s ‘Best Dispensary 2020’ by our customers.” He adds, “At Northeast Alternatives, we hire the most passionate people we can find. We are vertically integrated, so we make most of our products in-house. We have an edible department, an extraction lab, a grow, and a dispensary. We also package and have extensive post-harvest operations. We have a diverse group of people and skills.” A common misconception about can-

Together, the cultivation team has well over 50 years of experience and has won over 20 awards Kyle Bishop got a head start on learning about the business way back in the year 2000, when he lived in Colorado – the first state to legalize marijuana. There, with the help of his long time partner, Zac Cooper, he designed, staffed, and managed a 200,000 square foot facility – and together placed in the USA’s first High Times Cannabis Cup in 2010 under the Sativa Flower Category. Back in Massachusetts, Northeast Alternatives opened for Medical Marijuana sales in 2018, and then recreational use after the prohibition on cannabis was lifted in the state in 2019. Their custom-fit building at 999 William S. Canning Boulevard offers clients both the benefits of a premium cannabis cultivation facility and a retail facility in one stop. They serve approximately 10,000 customers a week.

A growing business Their dedication to the industry and diligent research has been rewarded with a huge client base – and Northeast Alternatives has been recognized as an industry leader with many awards. “Our Company has been focusing on producing the highest quality flower and products,” states Bishop. “We have won 14 awards in total over the past two years, ranking in The Harvest Cup, NECANN Competition, Commonwealth Cup, and Best of The Southcoast competitions. We

ibly medicinal plant as research develops and advances.” Northeast Alternatives is constantly finding new ways to deliver cannabis products to patrons. Recently, they began offering a new Farm-to-Fam brand RSO tincture and Delta 8 pens called MOTIV8. “These products are very medicinal and are suggested for new users,” says Bishop. “I am not aware of another dispensary that is offering Delta 8 THC in edibles, tinctures, and vape pens like we do. Delta 8 produces a much less intense, gentle, and extremely enjoyable experience.” The dispensary has an expansive website full of pertinent information regarding the facility, as well as marijuana science and facts. You can find it at nealternatives. com, as well as ordering information. You’ll also learn about the passion that fuels this business, and why it’s a dream come true for its founders and owners. “You will see that our team is really what makes us ‘the best damn dispensary in the northeast’ – which is our companywide goal and motto from the grow rooms, to the lab, in the kitchen and behind the counter,” concludes Bishop.

“I think we are just at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to understanding cannabis as medicine ” nabis is that consumers must “get high” to take advantage of its benefits. Not so, explains Bishop. “In fact, you do not have to get high at all to utilize cannabis as medicine. Our recently awarded CBD sugar concentrates (Harvest Cup 2020, 1st and 2nd place) are perfect examples of this. “I think we are just at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to understanding cannabis as medicine. We know that cannabis helps with glaucoma, epilepsy, and all sorts of other illnesses, but there’s still so much we don’t know. I believe in the next five years we will finally start to discover the science behind this incred-


Alternatives is constantly finding new ways to deliver cannabis products to patrons

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Making a minister For years, Reverend Russ Chamberlain, 67, has portrayed Santa Claus at Salvation Army events. But during the rest of the year, it’s not just Michael J. an act. For 12 years DeCicco Chamberlain has been a part of the Salvation Army’s efforts to help needy families under programs that include Christmas Assistance, Thanksgiving basket delivery, and Pathway of Hope. He said he handles Salvation Army tasks such as transporting the Christmas fundraising drive bell ringers and dropping off the kettles and their proceeds at the New Bedford headquarters at 619 Purchase Street. He also handles food deliveries to New Bedford residents who are home-bound because of the COVID pandemic. In this


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way, he explained, he is serving around 35-40 clients every Tuesday and Thursday, leaving the meals on their doorsteps then telephoning them that their package has arrived. He said the main goal throughout his life in the ministry has been to empower people by reaching out to them very directly. “Jesus met people where they were at and communicated to them what God does,” Chamberlain said. “And when he came to them, they became disciples. You empower people with God’s love, with the message that he cares about them. The world has always had challenges. Walk as a disciple and you walk through those challenges in faith.”

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If you want to follow in Russ Chamberlain’s footsteps, visit the New Bedford Salvation Army at 619 Purchase Street or make a virtual visit at facebook.com/ salvationarmynewbedford. Even small actions and donations can have a big impact!

He preferred serving ‘free will dinners’ – more like buffets, where the people attending could decide on their meal choices

He gives as an example of his approach the way he left managing the New Bedford Mercy Meals seven years ago. They were serving meals specific to that day’s menu, he said. He wanted to empower the people needing those meals. He preferred serving ‘free will dinners’ – more like buffets, where the people attending could decide on their meal choices. That in itself, he said, is empowerment. The breakfasts he offers now as mercy meals in New Bedford are of the free will meals he prefers. He gives his diners a choice of pancakes, French toast, and omelets. And he’ll recruit diners to volunteer to help him at the griddle when he runs out of pancakes, empowering these people even more.

Finding empowerment A tragedy was the first thing to empower him, a near crippling motorcycle accident at age 21. Back then, he was the sort of guy that bragged his father’s cousin was the famed “Doctor Kildare” TV actor Richard Chamberlain. But that accident took him in another direction. “I said to God that if I am able to walk again I will serve you,” he recalled. He is proud to note he, in fact, was able to walk across the stage to get his diploma when he graduated from Alma College in Michigan, three years later in 1978. The Shrewsbury-Worcester native started

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college by majoring in ministry work then switched to counseling. His ministry since then has included stints as pastor at the United Church of Christ in Lakeville and assisting with the CAS Highpoint Methadone Clinic in New Bedford. He’s also developed what he calls the Five C Empowerment Ministry, which includes housing people in special need in his own home. Two people are being housed there now, he said, and he is glad to do it until they get on their feet. He estimated he has helped approximately 19 foster kids and 19 international students under this program. The Five C Ministry, he further explained, is a nonprofit organization to look at the “Choices people are making and the Consequences of those choices. And if they want to Change the choices and experience different Consequences, I and others provide the opportunity to in a Caring, Christ-like way.” The empowerment he’s believed in all these years is a basic tenet of the Five C Ministry, he said. “God has given me the gift to help people help themselves,” he said. “It’s not about Russ. It’s about God’s empowerment.”

Tue 10-3, Wed 12-8, Thur-Fri 12-5, Sat 10-5


M ichael J. D e C icco has worked as a writer for over 30 years. He is also the author of two award-winning young adult novels, Kaurlin’s Disciples and The Kid Mobster. He lives with his wife Cynthia in New Bedford. S ou th C oast P r ime T imes

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Decadent desserts! Is there a better way to cheer yourself up on a blustery winter’s day than with a hot cup of cocoa, coffee, or tea? Yes! By pairing that hot cup of cocoa, coffee, or tea with some homeEliz abeth made biscotti! You don’t have to be a pastry Morse Read chef to make these elegant, mouth-watering treats – and they make wonderful holiday gifts, too. The secret to making these crunchy biscotti (“twice-baked”) is to begin with an off-the-shelf cake mix instead of having to mix a laundry-list of baking ingredients. The crucial secret to being a successful biscotti baker is to assemble all the ingredients and utensils before you start and to keep a sharp eye on the clock – exact timing will make the difference between rows of delectable, crisp biscotti instead of a baking tray scattered with scorched chunks. So give it a try (even if you do end up with a lot of crumbs). Try them on top of oatmeal, mixed with yogurt, or as nibbles out of a small bowl.


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Biscotti Baking Basics Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Select two cookie trays that will fit side-by-side on one mid-oven rack, rather than on separate racks – that way you won’t have to rotate the trays half-way through. Line each tray with a sheet of parchment paper (you can order them pre-cut online). In a large mixing bowl, whisk your favorite flavored 14.25 oz. cake mix with ½ cup all-purpose flour and your selected dry add-ins like cocoa powder, lemon zest, or spices. In a measuring cup, whisk two large eggs and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil and your selected wet add-ins like flavored extract, honey or syrups. Make a

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hollow in the center of your dry ingredients, then use a stiff spoon to mix in the wet ingredients. Once your dry/wet ingredients are blended thoroughly, add any extra ingredients – chopped nuts, flavored morsel chips, raisins/chopped dried fruit, flaked coconut, etc. Again, use that stiff spoon to thoroughly incorporate all ingredients – but if the dough gets too stiff or crumbly, pour some vegetable oil on your hands and knead the dough to ensure that everything is uniformly moist throughout, leaving no pockets of dry flour. Incorporate the dry ingredients that inevitably end up in the bottom of your bowl by rotating and flipping the dough as you knead it. You should end up with a (reasonably) smooth, clay-like dough. Split the dough into two sections, one for each tray, and roll/shape each into a 10-12” log. Moisten your fingers and gently pat the log on the parchment paper so that it’s uniformly about 3” wide and about a ½-3/4” thick. Bake for 19-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove the trays from the oven

Add a Drizzle, Dip or Glaze Biscotti are delicious as-is, so you don’t need to gild the lily, so to speak. But if you like, you can make an easy sugar glaze (whisk together 1 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar, ½ tsp. flavored extract, 1-2 Tbsp. water/milk/juice to desired consistency) – use immediately on completely cooled biscotti and let them sit for a few hours on the wire rack or in the refrigerator until the glaze has hardened. You can also blend a ¼ cup of a premade frosting (try Betty Crocker’s “Rich & Creamy” frostings) that matches your biscotti flavor with 2-3 tsps. of juice, espresso, milk, etc. Spread on one side of a cooled biscotti with a spatula, let them sit for a few hours on parchment paper in the refrigerator until hardened, then store them loosely lined-up in an airtight container. If you want a chocolate dip, glaze, or drizzle, melt 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips and 1 Tbsp. shortening in a 1-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. (You can also add a ½ tsp. of peppermint/almond/caramel extract for added flavor.) Drizzle, glaze, or dip the cooled biscotti in the melt, place on parchment paper, then refrigerate until the chocolate has hardened.

and let them cool on wire racks for five minutes, then use a very sharp serrated knife to make ½” to 3/4” slices. Turn the slices onto the cut side and return to the oven for 7-8 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip the slices onto the opposite cut side and bake again for 7-8 minutes. Remove both trays from the oven and let the biscotti cool for five minutes, then move them all onto a wire rack to cool completely for at least 15 minutes before dipping them in melted chocolate or drizzling them with glaze (optional). Let them sit uncovered in a cool spot for about four hours so that the glaze hardens completely Keep the biscotti in an air-tight container at room temperature on the countertop for up to three weeks; or else freeze them on a cookie tray for 30 minutes. Line them up neatly on a sheet of plastic wrap and fold the wrap tightly over them, then put them in a freezer bag or plastic container for up to three months. Whether frozen or not, you can “refresh” them to make them crispier by putting them in a low 250 oven for a few minutes.

Chocolate Nut Biscotti Use a Devil’s Food/chocolate fudge cake mix, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. almond extract, ½ cup slivered almonds (or other crushed nuts), 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips.

Coconut-A lmond Biscotti Use a moist white/vanilla cake mix, 2 Tbsps. vegetable oil (vs. 1 Tbsp described

above), 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 cup toasted flaked coconut, ½ cup toasted slivered almonds (Toast the coconut and almonds ahead of time in a 250 degree oven for ten minutes, stirring once or twice until the coconut flakes are uniformly browned.)

Tropical Biscotti Use a moist lemon cake mix, add 1 tablespoon each of grated orange zest, lemon zest, and lime zest. Add ½ cup chopped macadamia nuts (optional). If using a glaze, use lemon frosting, and lemon or orange juice. [see sidebar]

Cranberry-A lmond Biscotti Use a Butter Golden/Yellow cake mix, 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice, 1 Tbsp. almond extract, 1 cup dried cranberries, 1/2 cup chopped almonds. If using a glaze, use vanilla frosting and cranberry juice. [see sidebar]

Spice Nut Biscotti Use a moist spice cake mix (I recommend Duncan Hines), ½ cup crushed hazelnuts, 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice, ½ tsp. nutmeg, ½ tsp ground cloves, ½ tsp. ginger, ½ tsp. white pepper. Once the biscotti are baked and cooled, use a small sieve to dust them with confectioner’s sugar.

Holiday Biscotti If you like traditional German stollen bread or Italian Panettone cake, this is the recipe for you! Use a butter golden/yellow cake mix, 1 cup chopped dried cherries,

cranberries, golden raisins, ¼ tsp. cardamon, ¼ tsp. nutmeg, 1 Tbsp. grated orange zest, ½ cup slivered almonds, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. butter-flavored extract, 1 Tbsp. honey. As an option, buy a 4 oz. tube of marzipan/almond paste. When you’ve shaped your dough logs on the cookie sheets, make a uniformly shallow indentation with your fingertips down the length of each log. Roll some of the marzipan/almond paste between your moistened hands to create a rope just a bit shorter than the length of the dough log. Press it into the indentation, and gently pat the sides of the dough inward and over to hide the marzipan/almond paste. Reshape the dough as needed to its original dimensions.

Cherry Cheesecake Biscotti Use a vanilla cake mix, ½ cup crushed nuts (optional), 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 tsp. (Watkins brand) cheesecake extract, ½ tsp. nutmeg, 1 cup drained and chopped maraschino cherries. If using a glaze, use cream cheese frosting and cherry syrup from a jar. [see sidebar] Have a happy – and sweet – holiday season!

Elizabeth Morse Read is an awardwinning writer, editor and artist who grew up on the South Coast. After 20 years of working in New York City and traveling the world, she came back home with her children and lives in Fairhaven.

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Paul K andarian

The year 2020 is in the rearview, thankfully – one of America’s and the world’s worst. Happy are many of us here in the United States, like around 80 million of us, who at the end of 2020 felt a giant weight lift off our hearts and souls as we look forward to 2021 and four years of sane, capable leadership.

And as humans are wont to do, it’s a time for reflection. Inward of course, but often triggered by what’s outward. As we age, especially in the US with our sadly and often tragically image-driven media telling us what so-called perfection looks like, we often don’t like what we see reflected in the mirror. But in nature’s mirror – a placid body of water being the best example – we see the very old reflected, things there for countless numbers of years, the sky, the sun, the trees, the landscapes on shore. And we humans


marvel in the beauty of those reflections. I hike quite often, all times of year in temperatures hot and cold, and am fascinated by mirror images, the source of them and the recipients, the sun resolute and implacable above, dancing like a living portrait on the water below. A bright evergreen tree branch dangling over the water seemingly staring down curiously at its darker self beneath. Clouds one shape above, other shapes below depending on wind and current. The water itself a changing canvas for nature’s solar brush, ever evolving,

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shifting colors and shapes, all of it open to the beholder’s interpretation, evoking moods of whimsy and joy and inspiration. Some who love to walk do so with the intensity of mission, eager to get steps in, barreling down a path, concrete or earthen, with numbers in mind, steps, miles, time. When I walk the woods, it’s almost as if nature herself puts her hands on my shoulders to hold me back to slow me down and take long, loving, lingering looks around. Weird thing about measuring steps and walking. Walking is

now a specific form of exercise. There are walking clubs, walking apps, walking shoes, walking pants, walking gloves, walking hats. People walk with a look of fierce determination, as if getting somewhere fast is the goal, not the journey. Walking became “a thing.” Well, I’m old so I remember when walking’s thing was just “transportation.” So I’m not a fast walker, by design, taking time, slowing down, smelling the earth, watching the trees bend in the breeze, the critters large and small that call the woods I visit their home. I think that’s a great reward for our sense of smell, pitiful as it is to the creatures who need theirs to survive, but rewarding nonetheless. I love sitting in nature hearing a slow roar build in the distance, the wind, as it grows louder as it nears, cutting

Photo credit: Paul K andarian

When I walk the woods, it’s almost as if nature herself puts her hands on my shoulders to hold me back to slow me down and take long, loving, lingering looks around


Luke Barré, MD, MPH, RhMSUS Rheumatologist

through trees, making them sway like long, lean dancers. And then when it washes over me, hot or cold, humid or dry, I inhale deeply and swear I can not just smell the wind, but taste it, too, taste the trees, the wood, the leaves, the dirt. Nature. Honestly, if you let yourself, you can taste nature just by… being. And of late, I’ve become a mushroom hunter, obsessed with it in fact, and that consumes much of my time in the forest, stopping to find them, feeling them, breaking them open to inspect, picking out the bugs, smelling them, taking tiny tastes to spit out, poring over a mushroom field guide, posting pictures online for the real experts to dissect and determine. All of that just slows me down, to reflect, take time, enjoy. Mother Nature took an excruciatingly long time to

create this marvelous portrait we enjoy for free, so why do many of us just want to blow through it? I so enjoy sitting on a downed tree trunk just… being. So instead of counting steps, maybe we should count photos taken, or plants or animals spotted, or cloud formations wisping into whatever we want them to be, or deep thoughts thunk in the blissful depth of nature. Or honest reflections made. You see, there’s something to be said for reflections in the mirror, manmade or natural. If we look long enough at them, we’ll always find something we love.

Paul K andarian is a lifelong area resident and, since 1982, has been a profession writer, columnist, and contributor in national magazines, websites, and other publications.

Dr. Barré provides specialty care for patients with rheumatologic maladies including, complex autoimmune diseases like Lupus, Sjogren's, Scleroderma, Vasculitis, and Rheumatoid arthritis; inflammatory conditions like Gout, pseudogout and periodic fever syndromes; Collagen defects and hypermobility syndromes; and osteoporosis and metabolic bone diseases. He enjoys collaborating with his patients and other specialists to achieve a successful treatment plan that allows patients to do the things they care about.

508-996-3991 Welcoming new patients.

535 Faunce Corner Road | Dartmouth, MA www.hawthornmed.com

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South Coast Prime Times - January/February 2021