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Updated: March 18, 2013 02:52:12 PM



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Updated: March 18, 2013 02:52:12 PM

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Calling all bridging Hopkinton Junior, Cadette, Senior and Ambassador Girl scouts

(Left to Right):  Mikayla Pucci, Allison Maffiore, Emma LaCascia, Madeline Maguire, Lauren Hamm and Elizabeth MacDonald.


by Nancy Alvarez Burdick

March 30, 2011 — "By Girl Scouts for Girl Scouts" is the major focus of this year's Hopkinton Girl Scouts Marathon Tea event.  The 2011 event planned to take place in Hopkinton at the First Congregational Church on Thursday, April 14th will focus specifically on scouts teaching and sharing with other scouts. The "Go the Distance" theme of this year's event highlights the Hopkinton created Girl Scouts of  Eastern Massachusetts (GSEM) earned "Go the Distance" patch program.


This will be the fourth year of the annual Hopkinton Girl Scouts Marathon Tea. Each of the preceding Teas focused on celebrating the sister-city relationship shared between Hopkinton, Massachusetts and Marathon, Greece. One major accomplishment of exploring the sister-city relationship was the development of a Council's Own earned Girl Scout patch. The  Hopkinton Girl scout developed "Go the Distance" GSEM patch is now available for scouts worldwide to achieve. Focusing this year's Tea on the "Go the Distance" theme will allow Hopkinton scouts who have already earned the "Go the Distance" award to showcase the organization skills and creative and artistic accomplishments achieved en route to earning the patch. By sharing their discoveries, connections and actions they will educate and hopefully inspire other scouts to pursue completing this patch or develop a new project or patch of their own.


This year's event is supported by  the Hopkinton Athletic Association (HAA) and the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts (GSEM) and also supported in part by a grant from the Hopkinton Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.  With the additional  grant support, the scouts will make greater progress toward their goal of educating the Hopkinton scouts, the rest of the 58,000 member GSEM scout council and the community about the sport of marathoning and the long term goals that can be realized when training for both physical and metaphorical marathons. 

Girl Scout leaders interested in registering their troops or scouts and parents from troops for the event are asked to contact  Karen Bograd ( or Nancy Burdick (


7th Grade Travel Team Wins

Congratulations to the Hopkinton Girls 7th grade "A" Travel Basketball team for winning the Massachusetts State Basketball Tournament this month in Foxboro, Mass. The girls defeated Charlton, Duxbury and Medfield to win the championship. The team finished 11-1 in Metro West Division 1 and finished with an overall record of 26-3. This is the team’s 2nd consecutive state championship! Pictured in front row (left to right): Sarah Bertschmann, Allie Rodman, Alli McNulty, Kate Welzel and Jen Manning. Back row: Coach Chris Bertschmann, Elise Carlson, Emma Lukas, Nicole Thomas, Julia Thissell, Michelle Doucette, Gabby Lockett and Coach George Thissell. Not pictured is Coach Janet Carlson. Congratulations girls!


Going for Two

March 29, 2011 — Jenny O'Neil shares this photo of a Special Olympics athlete Kathy Hennessy last Saturday when they prevailed over the Hopkinton Police Association.

  Keep Center School

...and keep the Downtown alive.


by Robert Falcione

     There isn't time to answer all of the people who presume to know what I think, or what others think. I am not afraid of change, and to those who say I am, I refute thee thusly:

     But I do believe that Downtown Hopkinton, and the entire town itself in a historical sense, could benefit by Center School remaining a school.

      Don't tell me there's a heating issue at Center School, and that is a reason it needs to be abandoned. If that were your home and it wasn't fixed the first time you would be on the phone every day until it was. It is heat, not the Space Shuttle. Find a specialist to fix it if the staff can't. People actually make a living fixing heating problems.

      Drafty windows.

      Again, it isn't brain surgery here. There are companies that have become very large by replacing windows in old buildings.

      Classroom sizes.

      Many can be enlarged. The load-bearing walls in Center School are made of brick, but not all of them made of brick are load-bearing, if I understand our Municipal Services correctly.


     The stuff does not have to be removed unless it is disturbed. But if it needs to be removed, do it in the summertime, when the kids aren't there. Again, there are companies that make a living removing the stuff, and they are certified and qualified by the government to do so.

      Don't tell me that the land slopes and nothing else can be built. Next Generation (2 Wood Street) was on a slope, and it is now a level lot. Ever see The Shoppes at Blackstone Valley? It is a slope on steroids. East Main Street is the same slope as the Center property, as are the homes on either side of said street.

       To the right is the GIS map of the area of Center School (Click here for full size) that includes the undeveloped parcel in the rear. Note the large area to the south of the driveway, too! The Center School land is outlined in red. Between the two parcels is a 100' strip owned by NSTAR. This presents nothing more than an opportunity to solve the problem. And if NSTAR won't give it up, then perhaps it can be spanned, much like the Star Market building over the Mass Pike.

      There is a solution to every excuse I have heard for not improving Center School. If it were abandoned by the School Department, the building would need a nearly equivalent rehab anyway, so why pay twice?

       The superintendent of schools has said a TOTAL REHAB for Center School is $18 million. That is not a "Band-aid" as some have called it. It is not a "wash" as one person called it with respect to the $23 million estimated town share of a new school at Fruit Street, as if the $5 million difference doesn't matter. Five million dollars can go a long way toward modular classrooms that could be used during a renovation.

        Hopkinton needs to keep as many of its historical artifacts as possible. The fires took nearly all of the factories, factories that brought so many workers to Hopkinton in the mid-1800s, that the population grew by the thousands. Not only the Downtown, but Woodville were the sites of abundant factories, a history that can be seen in photos at the Hopkinton Library, or in private collections.
        It would be beneficial for the heart of the Downtown to keep those cheering kids and their teachers parading around the Common on Flag Day, or in their Halloween costumes on that day (Click thumbnails above to enlarge); or having a picnic lunch, or a march to the Fire or Police station for a tour.

        The heart of the Downtown will not beat as loudly without Center School being occupied by students.

        That part of our history should not be reduced to photographs on a shelf in a public or private collection.


"Ten Biggest Mistakes Parents Make During the College Planning Process"
Tuesday, March 29th 7:00 to 8:00pm
Hopkinton High School Room A219
Please join Linda Katz of Right Fit College Coaching for an informative and lively discussion for more information

Nancy Alvarez-Burdick, Glen Layton Offer Opinions Before Vote Tally

Town Clerk Ann Click reads totals



Fruit Street School Shot Down

Yes:_895 No: 2,302

Ballot Question Committee leaders vow to work together

March 28, 2011 — Candidate for School Committee and leader of a ballot question committee opposed to the School Committee's ballot question for a new district school at Fruit Street, Glen Layton, and HPTA President Cindy Bernardo, who doubled as the proponent of a ballot question committee favoring the new school, spoke this evening about working together to find a solution to apparent needs to improve or replace Center School.

      "We've learned many more people want to be involved in the conversation," said School Committee member Nancy Alvarez-Burdick in a short video (coming soon) before the tally was known.

March 28, 2011 — School Committee members, Chair Rebecca Robak, Jean Bertschmann, Nancy Alvarez-Burdick and Richard deMont got together in the Middle School Cafeteria following the vote perhaps to ponder the next step.


The Campaign

March 28, 2011 — The "NO" signs were again more abundant than those lobbying for a new school today at the Middle School entrance. Inside, a group of "NO" protagonists asked politely if people would like to participate in a survey. HopNews will be at the Middle School awaiting the count and will post it here asap from the Middle School.




March 28, 2011


9:58 pm A Pinecrest Village resident reported his car was egged..


8:45 pm A Gassett Road resident reported her vehicle and possibly her house was egged...


2:32 pm Elmwood School employees were unsuccessful in stopping a vehicle that did not stop for school buses...


12:22 pm Grove Street gas station reported a larceny of $10... 

Click here for the rest of the stories...


The Sentinel

March 27, 2011 — This Canada goose stands guard while his mate is busy hidden in the thicket off-camera making a nest on the island in the middle of Ice House Pond. Keep reading as HopNews expects to document the hatching of the eggs and growth of the goslings throughout the season.

Into the Sun

March 17, 2011 — This turkey vulture flies sunward over the Sudbury River this afternoon, its white wingtips turned yellow by the setting sun's warm glow.

Good Dog

March 27, 2011 — Cain faces his master ready for her next command, but responds to the photographer's whistle with the turn of his eyes and a furrowed brow. Cain was one of dozens of dogs at a meeting of the NE Bully Breed Club on Hayden Rowe Street Sunday.

        According to club Vice-President Angela DeTullio, the group of owners of misunderstood breeds took their dogs around town to promote responsible dog ownership.

bCalm Mat-cutting


March 27, 2011 — bCalm Power Yoga owner Lesley Reilly is helped by Chuck Joseph and surrounded by instructors from the studio and the studio's new Community Champions -- a group of 12 community representatives from the Chamber, Moms Club, Running Club, Girl Scouts, etc. who will commit to yoga at least twice a week for 60 days and share their experiences.  Reilly is one of only 100 Baptiste Certified Yoga Instructors in the world.  Her  goal is to make her studio welcoming to all -- including those who have never tried yoga.  The Grand Opening weekend was reported to be a big success with hundreds stopping by to see the new facility and take classes.

      The studio is located downstairs at Grace United Church, 61 Wood Street.


Woman Arrested at Logan Smuggling Cocaine in Diaper


March 27, 2011 — Massachusetts State Police troopers, Customs and Border Protection officers, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents this morning arrested an East Boston woman shortly after she arrived at Logan Airport from Santo Domingo with more than 1,000 grams of cocaine concealed in a diaper-like garment.


At approximately 7:25 a.m. KAREN MORLA RAMOS, 22, disembarked from arriving JetBlue flight 893. While being questioned at a Customs and Border Protection checkpoint, RAMOS provided conflicting answers about her travel, prompting officers to conduct a pat down search.


The pat down revealed a powdery substance concealed in a diaper-like garment RAMOS was wearing under her outer clothing. A field test of the substance was positive for cocaine. The total weight of the substance was slightly more than 1,000 grams.


Customs and Border Protection officers placed RAMOS into custody. Members of a joint State Police-federal task force that interdicts drug trafficking at the airport then interviewed the suspect.  After being interviewed and processed at CBP, RAMOS was transported to the State Police Barracks at Logan, where she was booked. She was transported to the State Police Barracks in Revere, where she is being held on $100,000 cash bail. RAMOS will be arraigned in East Boston District Court on Monday.

(Originally published May 22, 2005)



Why can't we be like Wellesley?


by Robert Falcione

     Just because. That's why! Now stop crying.

     Why can't we be like Wellesley? Let me count the ways.

     First of all, there's no room near the Hopkinton Public Library for a duck pond. Okay? Not okay? Alrighty then, how's this: There's no room anywhere downtown Hopkinton for a duck pond like there is in Wellesley. However, there is a duck pond at the Golden Pond, or as it is known to Townies, Ice House Pond. I suggest the goose, duck, great blue heron, and cormorant watchers go there instead of driving all the way to Wellesley. Or instead of the free duck pond in Wellesley, pony up some greenbacks and check out the Southwick Zoo in Mendon, two towns away, where the kids can walk in the deer enclosure and feed them if they're lucky. Or go to the Hopkinton State Park, where swimming, boating, hiking, fishing and photography are encouraged and practiced on a regular basis.

     Wellesley also has almost twice the population of Hopkinton, so there are more people to support the downtown, therefore more stores. Consider an additional 3,000 young women who pay almost $30,000 annually to attend Wellesley College, adding to the existing base of consumers — which is known in the business community as the Carriage Trade. By the way, Wellesley College is world renown, and occupies almost as much acreage as the Weston Nurseries land that is up for sale. Want to be like Wellesley? Start with a duck pond and a college. Wait a moment, I almost forgot about Babson's.

       Babson College, also located in Wellesley, has over 2,700 total enrollment and charges over $55,000 annual tuition for graduate school. Not a bad demographic for businesses located in Wellesley.

      Massachusetts Bay Community College boasts another 4,994. Wellesley's college students number over two-thirds the entire population of Hopkinton, adding to Wellesley's commercial and retail base.

       Put into perspective, Wellesley has over 6,000 kids spending $30,000 a year each just for school. Should rich ice cream, fresh flowers, fine clothes or a fancy car be anything but necessities for those youngsters? That is potentially almost 10,000 veggie meals every lunchtime and a Starbucks concoction or a Ben and Jerry's treat après dinner. And all that doesn't count the 9 private schools, including the well known Rivers School and the world renown Dana Hall, further adding to Wellesley's commercial and retail base.

    Some Hopkinton people who filled out the 2004 Master Plan survey wanted more restaurants downtown —  you know, like in Wellesley, I guess.



Got Shrub?

March 26, 2011 — These goats at Weston Nurseries await the crowds of people that springtime will bring, and with them, perhaps another benefactor who knows that golden arborvitae is one of their favorite snacks, and a great diversion from the usual diet of hay.



March 26, 2011 — Like the swallows to Capistrano and the Canada geese at Pratt's Pond, a robin red-breast in New England is a sure sign of things to come. * Remember, on HopNews Page One, double-clicking on a word opens the Free Dictionary with the word's meaning and audio pronunciation.


Animal Accessorizing

March 26, 2011 — This alpaca on Pond Street today is wearing a bridle with a ring that would make any piercing emporium flush with envy.


For the 10K Draw

Thursday, March 31, 2011  from 6 pm to 8 pm

Join us Thursday, March 31, 2011  at Cornell’s from 6 pm to 8 pm for a chance to pick your lucky number for the HLL $10,000 Draw! This will be the one chance to pick your lucky number. All attendees will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win their $100 back at the end of the evening!! All other tickets will be randomly assigned. Cornell’s will be serving complimentary pizza and other tasty snacks to those attending.


7th Annual HHL $10,000 Draw & Silent Auction

Join us for a night out to benefit the Hopkinton Little League and a chance to win $10,000!

Friday, May 6th 2011 7pm – 12:30pm

Location: Milford Portuguese Club Cost: $100 per ticket (each ticket admits 2)

ONLY 300 Tickets will be sold • Includes Buffet Catered by Olivia’s • Includes beer, wine & soda through 10:00pm • Cash Raffle and Silent Auction! • DJ & Dancing

Comedy Night at the Woodville Rod and Gun club on Saturday, April 9 at 6:00 p.m.

 Tickets are $20.00 which includes a meal and the show.

Real Estate Transactions for Hopkinton, Massachusetts


Compiled  for by Robert Falcione © 2011 All Rights Reserved

New Transactions from March 13, 2011 to March 26, 2011



Price Date Seller
23 Tammer Lane Paul Silva, William Shaw $675,000 Mar 18, 2011 Patricia R Lawrence, Alexander Bender
13 Lilac Court Dean J Russell, Penny S Russell $260,000 Mar 16, 2011 Mary E Tyrell Irrevocable Trust, David E Tyrell Trust
45 Nazneen Circle Pooja Gaurav Goswamy, Gaurav Goswany $430,000 Mar 14, 2011 Ahmed Mirajuddin, Trustee of Peppercorn Village Realty Trust
183 Saddle Hill Road Robert J Firnstein $172,000 Mar 114, 2011 Elaine L Firnstein
Last Week        
89-91 Main Street Brady Otey $267,000 Mar 9, 2011 Steven F Moschini, Lauren M Moschini
80 Wood Street Eric A Berger $295,000 Mar 4, 2011 Sherry Wester
Week Before Last        
12 Stoneybrook Road Michael T Gibbs, Marilyn W Gibbs $675,000 February 28, 2011 Steven Medina, Kelly A Medina
15 Connelly Hill Road Gregory S Sward, Amanda EW Sward $974,900 February 28, 2011 Connelly LLC
144 Spring Street Brandon M Peoples $260,000 February 17, 2011 T Wilson Properties LLC


Hopkinton Resident to Study at International Summer Dance Program

HOPKINTON — Angela Cole, 17, a student of the Dancing Arts Academy of Holliston and a Hopkinton resident, has been accepted into the internationally recognized summer program at the North Carolina School for the Arts. This will be Angela’s second summer travelling from the Dancing Arts Center of Holliston to a prestigious dance program. In addition to the North Carolina School for the Arts, Angela was also accepted into internationally recognized dance programs at the Pittsburg Ballet Theater and the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet.

Under the advice of her dance director and master instructors at the Dancing Arts Center, Angela chose to attend the North Carolina School for the Arts because they have a year-round program that specializes in contemporary dance, Angela’s forte, to which she is a candidate. Angela began her dance training at the Dancing Arts Center when she was eight years old. For the past four years, Angela has been a student at the Dancing Arts Academy (day school for grades 4-12). ~ Contributed content.

Second Board of Selectmen Candidate

Frank D'Urso switches to Democrat designation

March 25, 2011 — Former Planning Board candidate and Conservation Commission member Frank D'Urso, shown above speaking at Special Town Meeting last Monday, has switched from unenrolled voting status to Democrat, which lets him get the nod of the Democratic party at its caucus in April. In addition, Mr. D'Urso has taken out nomination papers.

      One other candidate has thrown his hat in the ring for Selectmen, Republican Dick MacDonald, who ironically won the contested seat for the planning Board last year over Mr. D'Urso.

17th Annual Student Government Breakfast


by Muriel Kramer

March 25, 2011 — The 17th Annual Student Government Breakfast was held at Hopkinton High School this morning with over 300 students and guests in attendance including US Congressman James McGovern, State Senator Karen Spilka and State Representative Carolyn Dykema.

The Student Government project was developed and initiated by Hopkinton High School History teacher Nancy Clark with the help and support of then Board of Selectman Chairman Joe Strazzulla. According to Mrs. Clark, the project has definitely met and even exceeded my expectations…Part of the project is for students to give an oral presentation to the class explaining the roles and responsibilities of the committee they were assigned to, and over the years these have been enhanced with the use of exciting new technology. Most students are required to turn in a notebook as well, and I am always impressed with the thoroughness of their understanding and the sophistication of their analysis of the meetings and issues.


"I am proud that HHS is always complimented on the fact that this project and the breakfast are unique. I know of no other high school in the area that has this type of practical learning experience in government. There is a substantial amount of planning and organization necessary on the part of the history/government teachers (Brett Mulvey, Steve Simoes, and myself) and the Selectmen's Office (Thank God for Geri!) to implement the local government project and the student government week breakfast, but it is definitely rewarding to see how much the students learn from going to meetings and how positively they react to the speakers at the breakfast.”


Next year will be Mrs. Clark’s last year at the helm of the project, and the community surely owes her a huge debt of gratitude for the tremendous educational experiences she has helped make possible for thousands of students over her career.


Speaking to the students, Board of Selectman Chairman RJ Dourney spoke to the benefits of getting involved. “We are a democracy; we have a voice.” Continuing he said, “We have an obligation to find our place to serve.


Representative Dykema continued in the same vein with her message to students reflecting at being personally inspired by this event each year. “Our government is a very special thing where truly everyone has a voice.” She encouraged the students to be informed, and be involved. Most importantly register to vote. “Ask your parents to give you a voter registration form on your 18th birthday.”


As if on cue, State Senator reinforced the theme. “I am hoping this program spurs many of you to get involved. Take some time to volunteer.” She also encouraged the students to call her office and plan a trip to the State House to learn more about state government and possibly pursue internships there.

Congressman McGovern spent time reminiscing about his first involvement in politics working on George McGovern’s presidential campaign in 1972 against Richard Nixon. “He was a good guy that believed in peace, in equal rights in civil rights and human rights worldwide. I became really inspired….My belief is that we should care about one another. My advice to all of you is to figure out what you believe in and then fight for it.” McGovern continued by reflecting on the issue of genocide in Darfur. “That movement was initiated by high school students.” High school students just like those gathered here first became aware of the atrocities in Darfur and forced the international community to get involved and provide assistance. “I had an old high school history professor that used to say, ‘The world will not get better on its own.’ Fight for what you believe in.”


Student Mehr Kaur has found her passion working to support refugees entering the US each year and spoke about her experiences. She noted sources that claimed that “2009 was the worst year on record for human displacement.” Over 43 million people worldwide were displaced in 2009. She noted also that the US accepts about 70 thousand refugees every year, and she has found her place helping support those transitioning to life in the United States. She too encouraged her fellow students to get involved. “At last count there were 43 million great reasons to get involved!”


Eightieth Marathon for Hopkinton Man

Hopkinton resident Bob Jorstad, above modeling a Senior Center tee shirt, will be running the Boston Marathon to benefit Friends of the Hopkinton Senior Citizens. This will be Bob’s 80th marathon. He has run 28 in Boston, 22 as a qualified runner. Bob says “I have never run for a charity before but I wanted to this year in support of the Hopkinton seniors as they are strong supporters of the town and the values I believe in.” You can support Bob’s efforts by making a contribution in his name to Friends of the Seniors, Hopkinton Senior Center, 28 Mayhew St.


New Farm Stand

March 25, 2011 — Angel's Garden Center gets some site work completed this week for a retail farm stand located at its West Main Street hilltop location.


Parking Restriction Announcement


Boston Marathon, April 18, 2011


Hopkinton Board of Selectmen


The Board of Selectmen voted at their March 22, 2011 meeting, per the Police Chief’s request, to prohibit parking motor vehicles or trailers on all public ways in the Town of Hopkinton from 5:00 AM on the day of the Boston Marathon, April 18, 2011 until 12:00 noon, unless the vehicles have a permit issued by the Police Department. The prohibition will only be enforced on public ways critical to supporting the start of the race. The Police Department will also enforce parking restrictions posted, as may be needed, to facilitate setting up for the race from the 7:00 AM on the Wednesday before the race, April 13, 2011 through 5:00 AM of the morning of the race, April 18, 2011. The Hopkinton Police Department will close the roads in Hopkinton at 7:30 AM on the day of the Marathon and will re-open the roads as soon as possible, but no later than 1:00 PM.

School Committee Ponders Alternatives to Fruit Street Neighborhood School

Another School Committee candidate emerges - yet another one changes status to D

March 24, 2011 — The School Committee met this evening and exchanged ideas with the architect for the Fruit Street Elementary School about scenarios to bring to the Massachusetts School Building Authority in the event the ballot question to fund the override on Monday passes. If that happens, the School Committee could bring the question to the May Town Meeting voters, where they have a placeholder Article for the funding. In light of the loss at the Special Town Meeting, and after hearing many arguments against districting, the School Committee is looking at different scenarios for a school at Fruit Street. 

      The school's architect was on hand this evening to offer insight as to possible reactions by the MSBA to changes in plans for the school. In one scenario, he talked of changing the projected school population, due to repurposing the Fruit Street school as a replacement for Center School, from 540 to 450 students. That, he said, would mean less money from the MSBA. But presumably that would also mean a lower cost to build.

      In the meantime, the School Committee, according to member Jean Bertschmann, is ready to meet Tuesday following the election, with the Elementary School Building Committee, the Board of Selectmen, and representatives of both Ballot Question Committees to review Monday's vote and determine what, if anything, to propose to the MSBA by Thursday.  The letter, should it be submitted, will be signed by Dr. Phelan and R.J. Dourney, said Mrs. Bertschmann in an email.
        In the politics of the School Committee election, one more candidate took out papers today, bringing the total to five people running for two open seats. Republican Scott Aghababian (photo) took out papers today and joined fellow Republican Glen Layton in vying for two seats currently held by Republican Nancy Alvarez-Burdick and Democrat Richard deMont.

         Also recently in the race is Beth Malloy (photo), who changed her unenrolled status to Democrat today. That gives her the ability to run in the Democratic caucus being held on April 8, 2011.





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