The Amtrak Downeaster will continue to operate on a modified schedule.

The situation is evolving, but currently the following service plan is in place: For Saturday, March 21 and Sunday, March 22, southbound trains 692 and 694 and northbound trains 693 and 695 will be in operation.

All other Downeaster trains will be suspended.

For Monday, March 23 through Friday, March 27, southbound trains 680 and 682 and northbound trains 681 and 685 will be in operation.

All other Downeaster trains will be suspended.

Some station buildings (including Brunswick, Freeport, Saco, and Wells) may be closed to the public, but Downeaster trains will continue to stop at the platform. Make reservations ahead of time online at or by calling 1-800-USA-RAIL.

Enhanced cleaning protocols have been implemented on trains and at Downeaster stations. For more information about measures being taken by Amtrak, visit

Citywide reading challenge launched

HAVERHILL — Haverhill Promise, the Campaign for Grade Level Reading, has launched a citywide reading challenge for Haverhill students to help encourage daily reading throughout the COVID-19 learning disruption.

Students in pre-K through grade 12 who attend any school or preschool program in Haverhill are encouraged to begin tracking their daily reading time and posting about their reading on social media.

It is recommended that students read aloud for at least 20 minutes each day during long breaks from school. Economically disadvantaged students are especially at risk for losing valuable progress in their reading achievement when school is not in session.

Parents and caregivers can help students track daily reading time and send in their students’ progress at the end of each week for a chance to win gift cards to Market Basket, Barnes and Noble, and local restaurants. To participate, visit

Increase your chance of winning a prize by following Haverhill Promise on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and posting photos and videos of students reading using #HaverhillReads2020, #HaverhillReads, and #HaverhillPromise. The challenge will continue for as long as the schools remain closed.

Families in need of books should email Haverhill Promise at

Ruth's House temporary closure

HAVERHILL — Ruth's House has temporarily closed its thrift shop in Lafayette Square to protect workers and customers. But, Ruth's House will still be open online, where service remains uninterrupted.

You can continue to support Ruth's House online at, on its Facebook page, or send a check to: The Thrift Shop at Ruth's House, 111 Lafayette Square, Haverhill, MA 01832.

Andover expands Meals on Wheels

ANDOVER — The Andover Department of Elder Services is expanding its Meals on Wheels program during the coronvirus pandemic.

The program is offering home delivered meals to any senior or adult with disabilities that requests assistance and has waived the screening process during the pandemic.

Wednesday through Friday, each recipient will receive two meals so they will have enough food to carry them through the weekend, in addition to a reserve in case of a shelter in place order.

Andover Department of Elder Services will continue to double up on meals. The program typically asks for a $3 donation for the meals, however, it is not asking for any individual donation for the extra meal.

Please make a donation of $3 to cover the cost of a single Meals on Wheels meal to help support this program. Send a check to: The Andover Senior Community Friends, Inc., P.O. Box 576, Andover, MA 01810. Visit online at

NH DMV stops walk-in service

CONCORD — New Hampshire residents can access most Division of Motor Vehicles services by phone, mail and online. Customers should take advantage of the DMV’s online services, including online driver license renewal, ID renewals, and online ticket pay at

Starting Monday, March 23, limited walk-in services will be available by appointment only and consolidated to five locations – Concord, Dover, Manchester, Newport, and Twin Mountain. Call 603-227-4000 to schedule an appointment.

All driver's license road exams are canceled until Friday, April 3.

N.H. DMV 20-day plates and authorized dealer 20-day plates issued on or after Feb. 26 have been given an automatic extension through April 30. These extensions do not apply to vehicle registration renewals. Please visit your town website for vehicle registration renewal options.

New Hampshire DHHS offices closed

CONCORD, N.H. — The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services’ Bureau of Family Assistance announced that all district office buildings will be closed for client-facing activities until further notice.

People in need of assistance may apply for benefits online at and will be scheduled for a phone interview in order to complete their benefits application. 

During this unprecedented pandemic, DHHS officials said the agency is doing its part to protect communities by avoiding unnecessary face-to-face interactions. DHHS is working to ensure its clients continue to receive the services they need while limiting potential disruptions.

District office staff will continue to provide service to residents. People with no internet access who are applying for assistance through the Bureau of Family Assistance should call 1-844-275-3447.




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