Hiking is breathtaking at Quechee Gorge

Quechee Gorge (above) in Vermont is a must stop when touring the Green Mountain State. (Photo by Cindy Rodriguez)

Many trails, spectacular views, swimming spots make New Hampshire,Vermont ideal hiking destinations

By LORENZO RECUPERO

We New Englanders are spoiled. We have the luxury of taking a 4-hour ride in any direction to almost any of the phenomenal travel destinations our area has to offer, each including a unique, breathtaking view and distinct manner of being.

And although Covid-19 hasn’t quite allowed an ease to traveling experiences just yet, it shouldn’t hold one back from getting out into the wondrous nature of New England.

That’s precisely why there’s currently no better 2020 summer experience than a hike outdoors, in the mountains generally separate from most others (for social distancing, of course) taking in the freshest air Mother Nature has to offer.

So, without any further hold up, here’s a short list (to assist with optimal hiking time) of several of New England’s most awe-inspiring trails and sights listed not by grandeur but nearest distance only.

Mount Monadnock, Jaffrey, New Hampshire

Distance from Everett: 77.9 miles northwest via MA-2 West.

The lengthy ride to this Goliath of a mountain, which stands at 3,166 feet, is tough enough, but only the first leg to what will surely require you to use both of yours very much. Be prepared to walk between 3-4 hours round trip, and that’s when using the shortest (White Dot, 1.9 miles) but also the steepest of multiple trails. But don’t let Monadnock’s rocky exterior scare you away, it offers one of the best views in the world when you grace the summit.

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The gloves are back on

Shayna Foppiano spars with Dennis Hickey as she gets back in the gym after the Covid-19 restrictions were lifted. (Photo by Joseph Prezioso)

By LORENZO RECUPERO

With Covid-19 restrictions easing and national sports readying to restart, athletes everywhere have been taking back their routines.

For undefeated professional boxer and Everett native, Shayna Foppiano, that means getting back to the basics.

“It’s really, really nice to be back and pushing harder,” said Foppiano, excited that gyms are finally back open.

In her first week back, she pounded-out four sessions with trainer Joe Lake, each including a four-mile run.

“The same day it opened I could not wait to get in [the gym]. It’s the thing I love, being in that environment,” said Foppiano, who used some of that time to get into her first official sparring session since lockdowns with Revere Police Officer Dennis Hickey (above).

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Pats sign Cam Newton, players say it’s brilliant

League reacts as star QB heads to Foxborough

By LORENZO RECUPERO

In March Tom Brady officially left the Patriot’s and signed up to be a Buccaneer and suddenly, the juggernaut of the AFC (and the entire NFL, really) was relegated from a postseason fixture to a playoff wannabe.

Suddenly, all that has changed, and the Patriots are once again hovering closer to the top of the AFC (and NFL) power rankings with the signing of former league MVP, quarterback Cam Newton.

News of Newton’s signing with the Patriots blasted off around the league like the ceremonial muskets fired once the home team scores a touchdown at Gillette Stadium.

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Pats have work cut out with tough schedule, replacing Tom Brady

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New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick at a press conference in 2019.  (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

By LORENZO RECUPERO

The NFL officially released the schedule for the New England Patriots 2020 season and it isn’t a particularly easy one.

The 16 opponents on the schedule have a combined .530 winning percentage from a season ago.

Because of this (and you know, losing arguably the best quarterback in NFL history), the sports media is abuzz with predictions the Patriots and Coach Belichick will lay down and tank (purposely lose games to secure a higher draft pick) in order to get a chance at the multi-talented, extremely coveted Clemson quarterback, Trevor Lawrence, in next year’s draft.

Amongst the pundits, the Pats’ season slate was labeled a ‘perfect tanking for Trevor schedule’.

After losing out in the bring-Tom-Brady-back sweepstakes, such a schedule and a chance at Trevor is a huge break for the rebuilding Pats and ol’ faithful schemer Belichick, right?

Not exactly.

And here’s why.

First, if we are to dispel the theory of the Pats tanking, we have to look closely at all angles and at the biggest development this off-season: quarterback Tom Brady has left the building.

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Coaching takes on new role during Coronavirus crisis

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Some of the Everett High School softball coaches and athletes share a socially distant moment on a Zoom chat.

By LORENZO RECUPERO

It’s the first week of May, it’s just after 2:30pm, the sun is shining and ballparks around the city are filling with young athletes waiting to stretch their muscles and show their stuff on the diamond.

Longtime Crimson Tide softball coach Stacy Schiavo is rolling ground balls to the infielders while her assistants toss balls to batters standing ready at home plate stationed just steps below the main entrance of Everett High School.

Outfielders call to each other to recover the balls battered by contact while Schiavo shouts a reminder of form to a group of girls taking swipes at the balls rolling their way.

That scene was common last year.

This year, there’s no such scene to be seen.

Instead of softball and sunshine on the diamond, the spring of 2020 is sport-less as playing fields remain closed to the public.

Athletes and coaches alike are being forced to remain apart while remaining active.

In essence, coaches are not coaching this season. At least not in the traditional ways that we consider normal.

Coaching on the field this spring has forcibly taken a benching to coaching from afar. Something coach Schiavo and her staff have tried their best to do at a time when being close is hard.

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