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Items can be sent to What’s Happening by e-mailing dmcardle@lowellsun.com. Jpeg photo attachments are also welcome; items can be sent to What’ s Happening by regular mail to: What’s Happening, The Valley Dispatch, c/o David McArdle, P.O. Box 1477, Lowell, Mass., 01853.

ACTIVITIES

AMERICAN RED CROSS BLOOD DRIVE: May 6, 7 p.m., Methuen YMCA, 129 Haverhill St., Methuen; it only takes an hour and is a simple way to make a big difference; to schedule an appointment, contact the American Red Cross at www.givelife.org or call 1-800-448-3543.

BONE-BUILDERS PROGRAM: Developed in conjunction with Tufts University researchers; free classes held Mondays and Wednesdays, 10-11 a.m., Dracut Council On Aging, 951 Mammoth Road; classes focus on strength training, balance exercises, and education about osteoporosis and fall prevention; registration required; for more information, call Judy at 978-957-2611.

DRACUT HIGH CLASSES OF 1963-168 REUNION: On Sept. 18, 2010, former students from DHS classes of 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967 and 1968 will gather at the Long Meadow Country Club, Havilah Street, Lowell; there will be a cocktail hour (6-7 p.m.), followed by a buffet dinner and dancing; tickets are $20 per person; RSVP to Cathy (Koutrobis) DeFabio, 551 Hildreth St., Unit 18, Dracut, MA 01826; spread the word to everyone you know and ask them to do the same and to reserve as soon as possible; the hall only holds 160 people; committee members include Bill Koutrobis, Cathy (Koutrobis) DeFabio, Ann (Koutrobis) Shanahan, Joanne (Piekarski) Daileanes, Mary (Bernier) Power.

FREE DIABETES PROGRAM: Registration is now open for a free six-week workshop for adults on living with diabetes; sessions will be hosted by the VNA of Greater Lowell, 40 Church St., Lowell, beginning on Wednesday, May 19, from 9:30 a.m.-noon, and will be held every Wednesday until June 23; program is based on the chronic disease self-management program designed by Stanford University; any adult is welcome to register by contacting the VNA at 978-805-2683; sessions are designed for people with diabetes or their caregivers.

GREATER LAWRENCE COMMUNITY BOATING: The Abe Bashara Boathouse, located on Eaton Street on the banks of the Merrimack in Lawrence is the ideal location for outdoor fun and adventure; the boathouse has expanded the length of its season and its programming to include an outdoor adventure for every age and ability; visit www.boatingprogram.com and learn how you can get involved in one of our rowing, sailing, fitness or educational programs today; memberships are available for individuals and families and include full use of the boathouse and grounds for nine months of the year.

INTERFAITH CAREGIVERS ELDERCARE FAIR: May 5, 4-6 p.m., Saint Michael Church Parish Hall, 196 Main St., North Andover; sponsored by the Interfaith Caregivers of Greater Lawrence, a coalition of faith communities, social service agencies, and health organizations serving elders and caregivers; representatives from a variety of providers will be on hand to share literature and talk about the different resources and types of services that are available to your aging loved ones; for more information, call Janice Boyd, sommunity educator, Elder Services of the Merrimack Valley, at 978-683-7747, ext. 1321.

IRISH-MEXICAN FILM NIGHT: May 4, 7:30 p.m., Garcia Brogan’s, 131 Middlesex St., Lowell; sponsored by the St. Patrick Irish Cultural Committee, in partnership with the Lowell Film Collaborative and Garcia Brogan’s; the film, One Man’s Hero, stars Tom Berenger; the film tells the little-known, controversial and true story of the “St. Patrick’s Brigade” or the “San Patricios,” who fought in the Mexico army during the Mexican-American war of 1846 to 1848; the movie begins at 7:30, but come early and enjoy food and liquid refreshment; suggested donation: $5.

METHUEN YMCA’S CHILD-CARE PROGRAMS: Registration currently under way for toddler, preschool and after-school programs; for children 15 months-12; programs run 7 a.m.-6 p.m. to assist working parents.; financial assistance is available and state vouchers are accepted; for more information, contact Child Care Director MaryEllen King at 978-683-5266; the YMCA is located at 129 Haverhill St., Methuen.

MIDDLESEX COMMUNITY COLLEGE EVENTS: May 4, 11 a.m., Culture Garden at Derby Park (next to 88 Middle St.), Lowell; Middlesex Community College’s music department Outreach Program will present a free concert by the Lowell High School jazz band; in case of rain, performance will take place in MCC’s nearby Lowell campus cafeteria, 33 Kearney Square; for more information, e-mail segarichj@middlesex.mass.edu.

* Three student recitals will be held this spring: Instrumentalists & Singers on May 14 at 12:30 p.m., in the MCC Concert Hall; MCC chorus, May 15 at 12:30 p.m. in the MCC Concert Hall; and Singers, May 17, 10 a.m. in MCC’s Federal Building Assembly Room, Lowell campus.

For more information, contact Carmen Rodriguez-Peralta, director, at peraltac@middlesex.mass.edu or 781-280-3923. For directions, visit www.middlesex.mass.edu.

SPINDLE CITY SINGERS SPRING CONCERT: Sunday, May 16, 3 p.m., St. Joseph Shrine, Lee Street, Lowell; free admission.

BENEFITS

DRACUT LIONS COMEDY NIGHT: Friday, April 30, 8:30 p.m., American Legion Hall, 574 Broadway Road, Dracut; featuring Vegas star Joey Yannetty and Comedy Central’s Jon Fisch; also appearing is Mike Smith, a New Hampshire educator and writer; doors are scheduled to open at 6:30; tickets are $20, which includes food and munchies; tickets can be purchased by contacting any member of the Dracut Lions Club or call Ken at 978-454-8829; if still available, tickets will be available at the door; the Lions raise funds for several local charities and causes, and also fund for research to ultimately cure blindness in children and help the visually impaired.

FRIENDS OF MG PARKER LIBRARY BOOK SALE: May 21, 5-7 p.m., donation: $10; May 22, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., 5-6:30 p.m.; May 23, 9 a.m.-noon,1-3 p.m. (discount time); 28 Arlington St., Dracut (978-454-5474).

GROUPS

DRACUT AMERICAN LEGION POST 315: Meets the third Saturday of the month, 1 p.m., 574 Broadway Road; new members welcome.

DRACUT COMMUNITY CHORUS — Rehearsals each Wednesday, 7-9 p.m., Dracut High School Music Room, Lakeview Avenue, Dracut. All adults welcome; no audition required. Call 978-501-3016 for more information.

DRACUT COUNCIL ON AGING: Open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., 951 Mammoth Road; group offers transportation to medical appointments, social services, outreach for the homebound; registered nurse on premesis Thursdays, 1:30-3:45 p.m.; for more information, call 978-957-2611.

DRACUT EXCHANGE CLUB: Meets first and third Tuesday of the month, 7 p.m., Dracut House of Pizza, 1067 Lakeview Ave.; active in the prevention of child abuse and promotion of patriotism and student of the month in local schools; guests welcome; for more information, call 978-454-3371.

DRACUT GARDEN CLUB: Meets second Wednesday of the Month, 7 p.m., March through December; Dracut Historical Society, Lakeview avenue; for more information, call 978-454-6165.

DRACUT KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS COUNCIL 4225: Meets the first Tuesday of the month; 7 p.m., Dracut Historical Society Building, Lakeview Avenue; new members welcome: for more information, 978-458-2667 or e-mail gertz@msn.com.

DRACUT LIONS CLUB: Meets second and fourth Wednesday of the month; 6:30 p.m., Dracut House of Pizza, 1067 Lakeview Ave.; new members are always welcome; for more information, contact the Dracut Lions Club, P.O. Box 310, Dracut MA 01826.

DRACUT VFW POST 9307: Meets the third Saturday of the month,11:30 a.m., Dracut American Legion Post 315, Broadway Road; new members welcome.

DRACUT SENIOR CITIZENS CLUB: This social club meets the second and fourth Wednesday of the month, 1-3 p.m., 951 Mammoth Road; a bingo game follows the meeting, plus various other social functions; anyone 60 or older is invited to join; you need not be a Dracut resident; annual dues are $2, payable on meeting days; for further information, call Lorrette Vengren at 978-957-7457.

VOLUNTEERS

AMERICAN RED CROSS BLOOD SERVICES: Seeking volunteers to assist from three to six hours at area blood drives in the registration or canteen. Transportation necessary; call Georgia at 617-699-3805.

DRACUT FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY: Need volunteers to help with fundraising, planning events, promoting speakers, general help with the annual book and bake sale; if you would like to participate in this community-centered activity, please e-mail dmastroianni@mvlc.org or call Sandra at 978-957-9140.

VNA CARE HOSPICE: VNA Care Network & Hospice, a nonprofit home health care, hospice and wellness agency, needs volunteers to provide practical and emotional support to terminally ill patients and their families in the Merrimack Valley. Volunteers receive training, supervision and support. Call Nancy Barcelo, volunteer coordinator, at 888-663-3688, ext. 4271. For more information about VNA Care Network & Hospice, visit www.vnacarenetwork.org or call 800-728-1862.

YMCA ESL/GED PROGRAM: Volunteers are needed for the Lawrence branch’ s program offered ‘Y’ residents; volunteers would assist in teaching multiple levels of ESL/GED classes, which are held mornings, afternoons, evenings and weekends; if you are able to help or would like to would like to refer someone to volunteer, call 978-686-6191; the Lawrence Branch of the Merrimack Valley YMCA is located at 40 Lawrence St.

TEACHERS NEEDED: Lawrence branch of the Merrimack Valley YMCA’s Resident Education Center offers programs focusing on supportive services for low income residents of the YMCA and the Greater Lawrence community; classes are free to qualified participants, but preference is given to the homeless and formerly homeless; for more information, call 978-686-6191.