Feaster Five Road Race Back on Track This Thanksgiving with Becca Pizzi as Grand Marshal

The Feaster Five Road Race, a Thanksgiving Day tradition that annually attracts thousands of runners and walkers of all levels, is back to a full in-person race with World Marathon Challenge finisher Becca Pizzi of Belmont serving as the 2021 grand marshal. The 34th annual race day takes place Thursday with a kids’ fun run at 7:45 a.m., at the track at Balmoral Park, Andover, and the 5K/5-Mile run beginning at 8:30 a.m.  Pizzi has run more than 80 marathons and, in 2016, was the first American woman to run the World Marathon Challenge—seven marathons in seven days on seven continents. She did the challenge again in 2018. “It is my honor to serve as 2021 grand marshal for this race,” Pizzi said. “I first ran the Feaster Five when I was 12 years old, and it has since become my favorite way to kick off Thanksgiving,” she said.

D’Amato’s ‘Mullet’ Brings Online Fame to Northern Essex Community College Basketball Player

It used to be, as the old Clairol commercial goes, that “only your hairdresser knows for sure.” Northern Essex Community College Knights basketball player Matthew D’Amato has turned that notion, um, on its head. College alum Andrew Comeau, who contributes to the popular @ballislife social media accounts, took a video of D’Amato’s distinctive ‘do during a Nov. 3 game. After obtaining permission to share it, the video went viral online Monday night. “I had no idea the video would blow up the way it did.

Northern Essex Community College Welcomes Back Sports Spectators with Some Precautions

Northern Essex Community College Athletics is welcoming spectators to attend all athletics home events with precautions to protect spectators, players, staff and game officials. Knights action begins this afternoon when the men’s soccer team hosts Southern Maine Community College. Director of Athletics Daniel M. Blair said new policies require that at outdoor venues, fans are not be required to wear masks while attending home contests, but social distancing is still “strongly encouraged.” At indoor events in the Sport and Fitness Center, all fans attending the college’s home contests must be masked, regardless of vaccination status and also maintain social distance. The college reminds spectators there may be different guidelines at away contests. Women’s volleyball opens its season at home Tuesday, Sept.

Free Basketball Clinic Begins Aug. 10 at Haverhill YMCA

A free basketball clinic is coming soon to the Haverhill YMCA. Haverhill High School Boys Basketball Team and Coach Souleymane Wane offer the clinic Tuesday, Aug. 10, from 5:30-7 p.m., at Haverhill YMCA, 81 Winter St. There are only limited spaces available. Those interested may register at the Welcome Center or by calling 978-374-0506.

Haverhill Council Honors ‘Impossible Dream’ Catcher with ‘Mike Ryan Memorial Baseball Field’

The Haverhill City Council gave its approval to naming the major league baseball diamond at Swasey Field after the city’s own Mike Ryan, a catcher for the Red Sox during the “Impossible Dream” season. Ryan, who passed away last year at the age of 78, was a member of the Red Sox from 1964-1967. He also played for the Philadelphia Phillies and the Pittsburgh Pirates. After a career on the field, he continued coaching for the Phillies until 1995. Vin Ouellette, Haverhill’s director of human services said, despite his success, Ryan always maintained a great affection for his hometown, particularly for the time he spent honing his skills at Swasey Field.

Haverhill City Council to Name Baseball Diamond at Swasey Field in Memory of Mike Ryan

The Haverhill City Council is set tomorrow night to name the major league baseball diamond at Swasey Field in memory of Haverhill native Mike Ryan, the Red Sox’ “Impossible Dream” season catcher. Councilors are expected to name the diamond the “Mike Ryan Memorial Baseball Field.” Members will also order the Ryan family be authorized to place a granite bench overlooking the newly designated space. Ryan, who died at age 78 a little more than a year ago, signed a contract with the Red Sox as an amateur free agent in October 1960 and began his professional career in 1961 with the Olean Red Sox of the New York-Penn League. He went on to spend 35 years in professional baseball, including his first seven in the Red Sox organization as a player. A former catcher, he played in 79 regular season games for the Red Sox during their 1967 Impossible Dream season, also appearing in Game 4 of the 1967 World Series against the St.

Northern Essex Community College Adds Women’s Golf as 13th Intercollegiate Sport

Women’s golf has become Northern Essex Community College’s 13th intercollegiate sport. The addition comes as the National Junior College Athletic Association created Division I and Division III in women’s golf following its Board of Regents Meeting in June. The women’s program will practice and compete in partnership with the Knights men’s golf program and be led by current men’s coach Mike Dube who enters his fourth year leading the programs in 2021-22 seasons. “While we have always welcomed women’s golfers to be part of the men’s program, this now gives additional opportunities to our female students to practice and compete for their own championships,” said Northern Essex Athletic Director Dan Blair. Any returning or incoming student interested in joining the women’s golf program are asked to email Dube at [email protected] or Blair at [email protected]

DiZoglio Senate Amendment Could Bring Pickleball for Seniors to Haverhill’s Riverside Park

When the state Senate passed a $47.72 billion budget last week, it included earmarks for senior pickleball at Haverhill’s Riverside Park, prevention of student substance abuse and a youth and community center in Methuen, among others. Sen. Diana DiZoglio was among senators statewide that tacked on an additional $63.7 million in spending. The Senate and House must now work out differences between their plans in a six-member conference committee. In separate amendments, DiZoglio called for $25,000 in additional fitness equipment at Riverside Park near Trinity Haverhill Stadium and $100,000 to construct pickleball courts. “Pickleball is among the fastest growing sports in the United States, especially among our older residents—our seniors.