Our weekday morning column, 5 Things You Need to Know, provides you with information that can help you plan your day and give you some fodder for water cooler conversations.
1. As kids in school know, this is the final day of classes before the long Thanksgiving break. School is dismissed at regular time today, but doesn't reopen until Monday.
2. This weekend, coinciding with the traditional kickoff of Christmas shopping, several events are scheduled around town. will host a , beginning at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. Admission is just $1 and will go to charities.
3. The is hosting a and a give-away, on Saturday. If you have a warm winter coat, drop it off from 9 a.m. to noon. In the afternoon, from noon to 3 p.m., families can get a coat.
4. will hold its from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Thirty vendor tables, and photos with Santa, are expected.
5. For people expecting to travel to see family for Thanksgiving, the state Department of Transportation offers some advice: head out early Wednesday, or later that night. Holiday traffic is expected to peak on Wednesday, and on Sunday. To avoid delays, drivers should travel in the early morning or after 8 p.m. Trouble spots include the Mass Pike around Exit 9 — connecting Interstate 84 to Connecticut and New York — and busy toll plazas.