The Hammonton Gazette 06/19/24 Edition

hammontongazette . com Wednesday , June 19 , 2024

HHS , HMS Graduation Keepsake Section Inside

Including the Valedictorian and Other Key Speeches
$ 1 00
Volume 28 • Issue 25
hammontongazette . com Wednesday , June 19 , 2024

Hammonton High School , Middle School students graduate

Kristin Guglietti / THG
Hammonton Middle School students graduated on June 13 at William T . Cappella Field ( left ). Hammonton High School students gradated the following evening , June 14 , at Robert Capoferri Field ( right ).

Community garden vandalized

BY DONALD YAMASAKI FOR THE GAZETTE
BY KRISTIN GUGLIETTI GAZETTE STAFF WRITER
HAMMONTON — Allies in Caring Development Manager Kelin Jimenez discussed free and low cost programs at Allies in Caring ’ s Con-Vivir Wellness Center located at 100 S . Second St .
As a development manager , Jimenez builds a lot of relationships with different community organizations and looks for different grants to help fund the programs .
“ In Allies in Caring , we ’ re committed to serving the youth and their families and so what we do is we provide mental health services and also preventive intervention programs through our wellness center . We try to gear all of our programs to be culturally affirmative like when someone comes in here and is from a different culture , they can walk in here rather than feel out of place . They can feel welcomed . All of our staff is actually bilingual ,” Jimenez said .
HAMMONTON — The community garden was vandalized . Commission member Amy Menzel informed the rest of the Environmental Commission of the vandalism at the June meeting .
Menzel revealed that the vandalism was noticed on May 21 . The doors to the shed at the garden were torn off . Menzel said luckily nothing from the shed was stolen . Signage was also vandalized at the garden . Hammonton Police were notified of the crime .
“ While nothing was taken , it ’ s disheartening that we have this problem ,” Menzel said .
This is yet another incident to happen at the community garden . Last season it was reported that there was ongoing theft of produce at the garden .
In lighter news , Menzel revealed later in her Green Committee report that the Community Market will accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance
See ENV . COMM ., Page 12

Allies in Caring offers programs , events

Allies in Caring has been serving the community since 2012 .
Currently , the staff communicates effectively in English , Spanish and American Sign Language , and are skilled at working with immigrants and people with disabilities .
“ We started with our mental health services . We try to keep our programs free , but if not at least keep it low cost ,” Jimenez said . “ A lot of our programs are grant-based . We are constantly looking for grants to fund our different programs , so they can remain accessible to everyone .”
For Jimenez , the most rewarding part of her job is knowing she ’ s helping people in the community .
“ I know the people that I ’ m helping because we ’ re based in the community that we work in , and so I know that my work is helping so-and-so and I ’ ve heard their life stories and I know how much each program contributes to their well-being , so to me that ’ s
See ALLIES , Page 4

Hammonton High School graduation faces storm

BY CRAIG RICHARDS GAZETTE PUBLISHER
HAMMONTON — A quickly moving stormfront wreaked havoc on the closing moments of the graduation ceremony for Hammonton High School Class of 2024 . Rapidly moving storm clouds and torrential downpours sent graduates , school officials and the audience scrambling as the event entered into the closing speeches .
With students already having paraded across the field , the ceremony had moved into speeches as heavy rain moved in . As the Salutatorian was giving her speech , rain picked up , forcing the ceremony and her speech to end abruptly .
As students and parents scrambled for cover , the platform was cleared with no school official addressing the crowd . Some attendees left while others made their way to the gym to receive their physical diploma . The papers handed out on stage to students were ceremonial items with students pre-informed to pick up their actual diploma in the gym after the ceremony .
The abrupt end to the graduation left some in attendance to go to social media to express their thoughts on the day and the event . While many comments were focused on the weather and its direct effect on the ceremony , others expressed frustration with the lack of communication from school officials and disappointment for the Salutatorian rushing her speech to end and especially for the Valedictorian who was unable to address her fellow students and those in attendance .
The following statement was given to The Hammonton Gazette from Hammonton School Board President John Lyons .
“ First and foremost , the Board of Education wants to again congratulate all 295 members of the class of 2024 on their academic successes and wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors . We also want to thank the administration , staff , and students themselves for participating in this year ’ s
See GRAD , Page 3

Dept of Ag . visits Macrie Bros .

Kristin Guglietti / THG
New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Edward Wengryn ( sixth from left ) visited Macrie Brothers Blueberry Farm on June 14 along with other dignitaries from New Jersey .
STAFF REPORT THE HAMMONTON GAZETTE
HAMMONTON — New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Edward Wengryn highlighted the beginning of blueberry season in the garden state with a visit to Macrie Brothers Blueberry Farm during an Atlantic County farm tour that took place on June 14 . Wengryn and several state and local officials viewed the packing of Jersey Fresh blueberries to emphasize that locally grown produce and farm products are readily
available now at farmers markets and stores around the state .
Some of the officials who attended include Atlantic County Clerk Joseph Giralo , Assemblyman Michael Torrissi Jr . and Atlantic County Fifth District Commissioner James Bertino .
“ Blueberries are one of the signature crops of the Garden State and a highlight of the New Jersey growing season ,” Wengryn said . “ The Macrie Brothers are among the growers who con-
See BLUEBERRY , Page 2

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