Fall Festival Oct. 5

A Fall Festival will be held Saturday, Oct. 5, from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Ayer Shirley Regional High School, 141 Washington St., Ayer.

Have your kids come and play games such as face-painting, cupcake-decorating and ladder ball. There will be a concession stand with hot dogs, hamburgers, popcorn and drinks.

'Shining a Light' to focus on young people and mental health

SHIRLEY -- The Ayer Shirley Education Foundation proudly presents "SHINING a Light" on Thursday, Oct. 10, at 7 p.m. at the ASRMS auditorium, 1 Hospital Road, Shirley.

This presentation for parents, educators, coaches and counselors is being brought to the community by the SHINE Initiative.

The SHINE Initiative's mission is to be a leader in the effort to recognize that concerns such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and other diagnoses in children and young adults are a mainstream health issue.

It is estimated that as many as 300,000 young people in Massachusetts may suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder, yet the overwhelming majority are unscreened and untreated.

During the 45-minute presentation, families from North Central Massachusetts will candidly describe the paths they have traveled, and the experiences they and their loved ones have endured, while coping with mental illness.

A very poignant message will also be delivered by a recent Central Massachusetts high school graduate, now a freshman at Anna Maria College, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

The audience will also be warmly invited to engage in dialogue with the presenters. The presentation is free and open to the public.

RSVP: ayershirley.edfoundation@yahoo.com.