Radio Show #214 – The Western Massachusetts Holiday Season

What a difference a year makes!

In this holiday feature program, Brad Shepard and special guest Michael Harrison examine the changes in the season, from last year to this.

Gift giving, the malls, online shopping, stress levels, the casino, and legalized recreational marijuana are all under discussion.

Where does it go from here?

Brad Shepard Today! Friday and the weekend, December 7, 2018

New marijuana coffee!
Infant ibuprofen brands have been recalled.
Westfield Seniors holiday events, with Tina Gorman.
Chicopee driver drives drunk and leaves a trail of trash.
South Hadley private home Christmas decorations raise funds for food pantry.
Western Mass. farmers receive awards.
Turkey hunter who shot fellow hunter in the back receives sentence.
Bright Nights visitors receive invitation to see winter animals at the Forest Park Zoo.
MGM Springfield now offers bus service from YOUR HOME to MGM Springfield!
Secret Santa is paying shoppers’ layaway bills at Springfield’s Walmart.

Brad Shepard Today! Thursday, November 29, 2018

Mass. Pike pothole alert!
MGM Springfield votes NOT to unionize their security force.
Springfield welcomes Hot Oven Cookies!
Ashley Tresoline and Bella Foodie!
Last CityStage show is set for December 7, 2018.
Water warning for Agawam.
Dakin Humane Society presents a $5.00 “Fill-a-Bag” special!
Two studies show an increase in highway crashes in legal marijuana states.
Vandals damaged the memorial park for two murdered Springfield Police officers.
Berkshire East in Charlemont is open for the skiing season!

Brad Shepard Today! Friday and the weekend, November 16, 2018

New version of Monopoly for Millennials.
Longmeadow School Committee votes not to renew superintendent’s contract.
MGM Springfield’s October take.
Massachusetts’ laws and limits on leaving unattended dogs outside during a weather emergency.
Western Mass. trees still have leaves – not good for your lawn for them to mix with snow.
Eversource warning of schemes.
Christopher Viale and Cambridge Credit Counseling of Agawam can help with credit card balances.
Western Mass. school threats and hoaxes have increased over the last few years.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Traffic and construction information for the remainder of this week.
Plans and officials are now announced for Springfield’s Parade of the Big Balloons!
National Grid is setting off propane “booms” to chase away crows!
Heavy rain and falling leaves cause hazardous driving conditions.
95 year-old WWII Air Force veteran from East Longmeadow receives medals.
Moose and deer are breeding and very likely to run in front of your car.
Rep for proposed marijuana facility shows up late and is unable to field questions.
Holyoke chiropractor donates 265 lbs. of food to Kate’s Kitchen.
Red Cross needs help with blood donations.
Salvation Army of Holyoke holds their annual turkey drive.
Proposed pot shop for Easthampton raises eyebrows due to its location… near a child daycare center.

Brad Shepard Today! Friday, and the weekend, November 9, 2018

Longmeadow Big Y renovated!
Getaway U-Haul leads police on a Mass. Pike chase.
Northampton parking rates going up!
17 year-old Westfield youth creates “Buddy Benches” for his school.
Enormous, Endangered Shire Horses come to the Equine Affaire at the Big E! (with Carol de Carlo).
A Big Mooncake for Little Star at the Eric Carle Museum.
Fake Kohl’s coupon warning.
AARP Veterans Day scam.
Making history, Amherst government changes over to the Town Council form.
Brad Shepard and Richie Mitnick to perform at Bright Nights Ball at MGM Springfield!

Brad Shepard Today! Thursday November 8, 2018

Veterans Day Parade set for this Sunday!
A.C. Moore Arts and Crafts store at the Holyoke Mall is closing for good.
Parade of the Big Balloons is looking for balloon wranglers!
Nancy Kerrigan welcomes guests to the first “Holidays at MGM Springfield!”
An AARP grant creates new bus benches throughout Springfield!
Margaret’s Pantry in Holyoke is in desperate need of your help to feed those less fortunate.
Holyoke sewage break polluting the Connecticut River is being repaired.

Brad Shepard Today! Monday, October 22, 2018

Springfield traffic and road news for the week!
Historic lottery jackpot.
MGM Springfield at Halloween!
South Amherst’s Small Ones Farm and Halloween’s crop problems.
Ludlow’s St. Paul’s Church offers “Trunk or Treat!”
Massachusetts stink bug population – rising.
Business people on the move: Wade Michaels and Derrick Feuerstein.
Springfield’s Visitors Center moves to a new location.

Brad Shepard Today! Friday and the weekend, October 19, 2018

New Save-A-Lot opens!
Halloween at Rice Fruit Farm.
Pride demolishes a dilapidated service station and replaces it with the new “Pride Kitchen” concept.
Chicopee drunk driver just misses a cruiser.
Granby Selectmen determine a complaint against the town administrator “lacked evidence.”
MGM Springfield offers a second round of opportunity to be a dealer; blackjack classes offered.
Green and Fit launches a huge revitalization project in Holyoke.
Broadway Office Furniture in Springfield is giving away office furniture to non-profit businesses.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Taco Bell’s “Steal a Base, Steal a Taco.”
The Quabbin is at 96% capacity.
After the MGM opening and its first month, how is business in downtown Springfield? Let’s ask Nadim Kashou.
West Springfield hears a proposal on new chicken laws in the town.
A new community theater in Holyoke, K and E Theater Group, presents “Sweeney Todd”! (with Eddie Zitka)
Plastic bags may be banned in Greenfield.
Wilbraham town planners reject latest school plan.
Nueva Esperanza in Holyoke.
Fallas Stores close all Massachusetts locations.

Brad Shepard Today! Tuesday October 2, 2018

Big E sets a new attendance record!
Film and Media Exchange in Springfield for aspiring screenwriters.
Taste of Italy Festival.
UMass football coach suspended for using the word “rape.”
Palmer Paving sold to a New York firm.
MegaMillions and Powerball.
New pavilion for the Franconia Golf Course.
JDog Junk Removal and Homeward Vets team up to provide free furniture for vets.

Brad Shepard Today, Thursday, September 20, 2018

Wilbraham Police have a bear they are trying to remove.
Granby Public Schools add new rule banning sugary high-energy drinks and coffee.
MGM Springfield announces their new theater complex.
“Good To Go,” a new program at the Mental Health Association of Western Mass., with Kim Lee.
Your Western Mass. Red Cross needs some help.
Local flooding and ponding could damage your car – with Mike Zabik.
Columbia Gas Co. cancels plans for their $33M rate hike.

Brad Shepard Today, Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Bright Nights 5k Road Race… a fast sellout!
Decision made on naming the new Springfield police station.
Deerfield Craft Fair takes place in the open air!
Westfield construction alerts: intersection of Mill and Locust Streets as well as Washington Street.
Lane closures in the hilltowns on the Pike!
RMV and DOT scuffle.
The Big E in the rain.
Gas prices up!

Brad Shepard Today! Friday and the weekend, September 14, 2018

Mayor Sarno turns down City Council request for posthumous promotion of the late Police Lt. Robert Caulton.
MGM Springfield announces a new comedy club – Roar!
Tony Orlando returns to the Big E for the first time in 44 years!
Noreen Tassinari – all about the Big E this year!
Blandford Ski Area makes a comeback for our skiers!
And now, a bowling alley, karaoke and billiards indoor adventure park at the Holyoke Mall!
Marcotte Ford in Holyoke completes its $8M upgrade!
Hadley’s new Route 9 traffic light beacon.
Springfield Roman Catholic Diocese fixes debris problems at St. Jerome Cemetery in Holyoke.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The Eastfield Mall is “de-malling.”
MGM Springfield’s first assault.
Jordan Goodman on the Fed’s adjustment of the prime rate.
MASS DOT have funds and support to study a new exit to serve the hilltowns.
Southwick Country Club golf course becomes a new residential development!
Subway cans the $5.00 Footlong.
Holyoke Mall at Ingleside examines new shopping experiences.
Goodbye to the Hadley landmarks of “Stan the Vegetable Man” and the Hadley Burger King.

Brad Shepard Today! Friday and the weekend, September 7, 2018

Apple iPhone recall.
RIP Burt Reynolds.
Shelburne Falls’ Bill Cosby sued by his defense team over unpaid fees.
East Longmeadow’s NHL Florida Panthers center Frank Vatrano comes home to check out MGM!
Danny Eaton’s first production of his new season, “Johnny Guitar” had its opening at the Majestic Theater!
Anthony Maloni and his family have rescued the Wilbraham landmark, Rice’s Fruit Farm.
West Springfield High School mourning the loss of JV Basketball Coach Kevin Campbell.
The Gray House teamed up with Hot Table to feed those in need.
The Mattoon Street Arts Festival marks 46 years.
World Trade Center “I-beam” groundbreaking ceremony is Friday at Riverfront Park.

Brad Shepard Today! Thursday, September 6, 2018

Don’t eat this cereal – throw it out!
9/11 Memorial not ready in time for the Springfield 9/11 Tribute.
“Ride to Remember” charity bike ride this year takes off from MGM Springfield.
The Big E offers a pass to skip long ride lines.
Hampden Senior Center presents a dinner theater murder mystery (with special guest Rick Rubin).
$650M indoor water park planned for Palmer (with special guest, Paul Robbins).
Adams man sentenced for fomenting a terrorist act.
Bill Cosby’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is vandalized.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Heat wave has the effect of 105 degrees!
Ed Visconti is working in the heat at the Springfield Cooley Street Stop & Shop.
MGM Springfield contributes $25,000 to Springfield’s Square One.
Like the snow, the heat is affecting the regional school calendars.
Erica Jansons at Hampden Hills Alpacas has to keep the animals cool too!
How is MGM Springfield affecting downtown businesses? Nadim Kashou seems to be quite pleased!
The Southwick Police Dept. says a final “goodbye” to K9 Police Officer Jax.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, August 22, 2018

President Trump sends letter to the families of the two young college students who lost their lives attempting a rescue of two children in the Chicopee River.
Former Chicopee Firefighter charged with ten counts of robbery.
25th anniversary of the Holyoke Merry-Go-Round.
Gas prices in Mass. are down a penny.
Getting to, and parking at, MGM Springfield on opening day!
New trees planted in Springfield.
Dogs staying at the MGM Springfield Hotel will get dog treats!
Special appearance by Officer Mike Wilk, Chicopee Police Dept.

Brad Shepard Today! Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Voter registration deadline today!
The Beach Boys set to perform at the Big E!
Syed Hussein, M.D. begins as Senior VP of Trinity Health of New England.
MGM Springfield allowed to change images on its I-91 sign… but CANNOT have animation.
William J. Metzger, former Springfield City Clerk, has died.
Pigeons invade Springfield police cruiser.
Car crashes into Wilbraham home.
MGM Springfield to be “smoke-free!”
Sheriff Nick Cocchi has his 2nd annual cookout picnic today!