Since 2003 Hopkinton Online PressTM

24 Main Street, Hopkinton, MA 01748 508-435-5534

 Page 1   Page 2   Archives

Click for Hopkinton, Massachusetts Forecast

Updated: March 18, 2013 02:52:04 PM



  "The News Starts Here!"

HopNews: Over 5.3 million pages read

Updated: March 18, 2013 02:52:04 PM

 Community   Seniors   Police   Letters   HPTA Source White House Registry State House DCR MBTA MWRTA

HHSPressSchoolsTownArchivesDeaths DictionaryGoogleGoogle MapsMBTA 457CNNFOXCBSAOL GamesFree DailyFree Radio


May 3, 2011 — This dragon is ready to protect its eggs during the Annual Egg Hunt at Checkerberry Farms in  Winter Street last weekend. Photo by Maria Gross.

Town Meeting, May, 2011 - Day 1


May 2, 2011 — In contrast to the March, 2011 Special Town Meeting that drew 935 residents to vote a new school up or down, this evening's Annual Town Meeting appeared to not have any hot button issues expected to come up on the first evening; the first vote that had a standing count tallied just 165 voters.

       Town Moderator Dr. Bruce Karlin instituted a new procedure at the outset of the meeting called a Consent Calendar, grouping many "no action" articles into one motion, presuming that there would be no opposition to any of them. However, he did give "anyone" in the room the opportunity to hold an individual article for discussion in its printed order in the Warrant by saying "hold" loudly at the introduction of the specific article number.

        Two people did shout out to hold articles, but withdrew their motions after hearing a clear explanation that the articles had been withdrawn by their sponsors.

        Sandy Altamura expressed disappointment that she had just picked up the Warrant and was not familiar with the articles the meeting was being asked to vote on.

         Former Tree Warden Joe Regan (File photo) surprised many Town Meeting members by asking for an amendment to add money to the town's budget to retain the position of Tree Warden. A plan created by the Town Manager Norman Khumalo and DPW Director John Westerling would have eliminated the position in the budget and instead integrated the operations into regular DPW operations, which would require training and outside vendors, which some in the room felt could actually cost more.

         Lily Holden asked if there would be any overtime involved, because the Tree Warden needs to report to boards sometimes in the evening.

          Mr. Westerling said that there were no plans for overtime at this time.

         Mr. Regan's amendment passed, adding back to the budget the money previously removed that he wants to continue to fund the position of Tree Warden, a part time position, which is currently held by arborist Paul Gleason.

          However, toward the end of the meeting, the body voted to reconsider the town budget in order to consider adding $125,000 in insurance money for DPW facility needs.

          In other action, Town Meeting voted a new Council on Aging van, but denied a DPW highway tractor. One West Main Street culvert will get repaired, but one will not.

          Appropriations Chair Ron Eldridge said his committee felt paving the road into the Fruit Street property could wait, and the assembled agreed, voting down funding for an access way.

          The DPW got funding for a study of a new DPW facility, but not before the former owner of the town's Fruit Street property, Jim Pyne, strongly urged that the town pursue purchasing property that is for sale adjacent to the current Wood Street facility, before spending any more money, in order to have enough land to expand.

          The Lake Maspenock Dam did not get funding for repairs, a price tag that could have been up to a million dollars, according to Mr. Eldridge, who said they needed to see a full plan before the Appropriations Committee would approve it.

          School Street and area residents, led by neighbor Errol Dickey (File photo, right), visited with Selectmen last week and presented a strong case to reverse the recommendation of Appropriations Committee for no action to be taken to appropriate funds for a study of the intersection at School and West Main. Mr. Dickey asked Town Meeting to agree this evening..

          Following a suggestion by Selectmen Chair RJ Dourney to fund a study with $30,000 from free cash, Town Meeting agreed with Mr. Dickey.

          The last article was #34 for a Fire Department Tender Truck. The motion was to take no action, but the motion failed, leaving the inverse, a vote to fund it, needing to be written, and the assembly voted to take it up tomorrow.

          One of the first orders of business tonight was to switch the order ot two articles concerning the library. Article 49, which would facilitate a zoning change that would enable a robust expansion from its current size, was moved to be voted after article 53, the motion to vote the design up or down. That article is the next to the last of the remaining articles.

          Town Meeting will resume Tuesday, May 3, 2011 at the Hopkinton Middle School at 7:00 pm.


Out For a Stroll and a Bath

May 2, 2011 — Our goose at Ice House Pond left her nest for a short swim, a bath, and to stretch her wings this morning, but didn't take long to to get back to warming her eggs minutes later. The eggs appeared to have gotten submerged a few weeks ago when the island where the nest is got swamped. Are the eggs still viable after being covered in water? Would she know if they are viable after an event like that? How long would a normal incubation last? Is this past the time frame? Can she lay more eggs, and in time for them to mature this year if those do not hatch? Let's see what happens, hopefully, soon. Video camera still shot.


A Done Deal

May 2, 2011 — Hiller Cleaners owner George Vrahliotis put his money where it belongs, making the property transfer of Hitchings Hardware at 63 Main Street legal and proper today, paving the way for the final few permits before demolishing the building and constructing a new one for his dry cleaning and laundry business, Hillers Cleaners, which is currently located further down the road.

         "We hope to demolish it in the next couple of weeks," said attorney Doug Resnick, who is representing Mr. George Vrahliotis in front of the various town boards.

Real Estate Transactions for Hopkinton, Massachusetts


Compiled  for by Robert Falcione © 2011 All Rights Reserved

New Transactions from April 24, 2011 to May 2, 2011



Price Date Seller
63 Main Street 63 Main Street Real Estates LLC $310,000 May 2, 2011 Donald A Hitchings
2 Erika Drive Susan, Shawn, Pauline, Ray Collins $570,000 April 28, 2011 Julie R Dewaele
9 West Elm Street Evan E Gallagher $362,500 April 28, 2011 Susan Collins, Shawn Collins
302 West Main Street Carter Brennan Property Group LLC $125,000 April 28, 2011 Judith C Brogioli, Charles M Brogioli
91 Grove Street JMFE Properties LLC $350,000 April 25, 2011 JBCD Properties LLC
Last Week        
28 Apple Tree Hill Road E James L Golden III $147,500 April 22, 2011 Fannie Mae
Wilson Street Aho Daniel Trust, Fiske Hill Realty Trust $60,000 April 21, 2011 Jon Rosenfeld, Patricia Rosenfeld
4 Donna Pass Kenneth J LaGelnne, Patricia J LaGlenne $620,000 April 15, 2011 Neil H Shaffer, Nanci A Shaffer
21 Forest Lane UNIT 19 W/PS 21A & 21B Xiao Minglong, Kang Yanli $320,000 April 14, 2011 Atrthur A Massicott, Kacqueline K Massicott
Week Before Last        
40 Sanctuary Lane Dorothy A Hunt Trust, Hunt-Sanctuary Fam Trust $270,000 April 8, 2011 Irina Veron, Galina Yasnova
7 Sanctuary Lane #17 Anna M Ferrari $446,798.37 April 7, 2011 Weston Development Group
20 Huckleberry Road Louis J Delonte, Margaret T Delonte $717,500 April 6, 2011 George Batejan, Carol A Batejan
45 Chamberlain Street William A Muench, Roberta T Meunch $269,900 April 5, 2011 Mark B Segars, Sally Ann L Segars, Sally Ann K Stukels


Governor Deval Patrick URGES UNITY

BOSTON –Monday, May 2, 2011 – The following is a statement of Governor Deval Patrick relative to Osama bin Laden.


"On behalf of the people of Massachusetts and all others who suffered the profound loss of the September 11, 2001 attacks, I congratulate and thank President Obama and the soldiers and intelligence personnel who carried out this mission. We also remember our Massachusetts servicemen and women who continue their extraordinary efforts to rid the world of terrorism. Let us heed the President's call to unite, as we did in the months of mourning following that terrible day, to make a better, safer and more just world." Contributed file photo.


May 2, 2011 — Osama Bin Laden, the Saudi Arabian accused of masterminding terrorist attacks against United States interests that culminated in the destruction of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11, 2001, has been killed during an attack by United States forces, shot dead in the head in Pakistan on May 1, 2011. According to a CBS story, upon taking office, President Obama ordered the Central Intelligence Agency to make killing or capturing bin Laden a "top priority." The CBS story is here.  The CBS button is always above. Below is President Obama's speech from the White House. The White House button is always above White House.



Nature's Engineers

May 1, 2011 — This male beaver carries a small skinned branch underwater, apparently just the right size, to bring to a dam he is building upstream from Whitehall Brook at an undisclosed location on Woodville, while his mate waits near the lodge. He'll raise the water level to where he feels aquatic life, and especially fish, can prosper. Another beaver dam is a few photos down.

Here She Comes...

May 1, 2011 — Eight year-old Amelia Maggiore  gets fitted by her mom at the HopSwap event at Hopkinton High School that coincided with the HPTA Green Expo.


Gonna Be a Bright, Sunny Day

ThumbnailMay 1, 2011 — Taken from near the highest point in Hopkinton today, this HD Video screenshot of Mt. Wachusett in Princeton, Mass reveals, even through a distant light haze, the communications towers, as well as the Fire Tower, atop its summit. Enjoy a HopNews Day Trip to the mountain taken last year in HD Video and narrated by Austin Falcione.


No Tom Sawyer Here

May 1, 2011 — Julia, 10, mom Suzanne and dad, David Pillarella made it clear to the photographer that there was more paint available for people who wanted to help on Wood street today.

Beavers Still Active

May 1, 2011 — It appears the beavers are still fighting the neighbors at North Mill Pond who try to limit the effects of their dam, lest their properties are affected adversely.


Turtle Island

May 1, 2011 — Some native Americans called the earth "Turtle Island" because they thought people were on the back of a turtle at Blood's Pond today. It may be the same instinct that drives turtles to climb rocks that may remind them of the backs of their mothers.

She Loves Me...

May 1, 2011 — The gander of the Canada geese couple at Ice House Pond that HopNews is following photographically, grabs a flower from the water today; but instead of bringing it home to his mate, he kept it for himself, while she stayed in the nest tending to the eggs.

Hopkinton 14, Westwood 5

Photo by John Cardillo

May 1, 2011 — EG McMillan's strong pitching led the way to a 14 to 5 victory for the Hopkinton Varsity Baseball team on Friday.

Hopkinton 13, Medway 0

May 1, 2011 — Michelle Cooprider gets ready to clobber one in Wednesday's game against Medway, which the girls won 13-0.

State Police Investigating Fatal Crash on Route 290 in Shrewsbury


May 1, 2011 — Today at 5:19 a.m., Troopers from the State Police Barracks in Holden responded to reports of a one-vehicle motorcycle crash on Route 290 eastbound at Exit 23A in Shrewsbury.  The operator of the motorcycle died as a result of the crash.


Preliminary investigation by Trooper Michael Sonia indicates that Anthony Fasulo, 48, of Milford, was operating a 2006 Harley Davidson motorcycle when he lost control of the vehicle and went into the grassy median at Exit 23A.  Mr. Fasulo struck a highway sign and was pronounced deceased by responding EMS personnel.


Speed and alcohol are not believed to be factors and there were no road closures while this crash was investigated.


The facts and circumstances of this crash remain under investigation by Troop C of the Massachusetts State Police, with the assistance of the State Police Collision Analysis Reconstruction Section, the State Police Crime Scene Services Section, the Medical Examiners Office and the Shrewsbury Fire Department.

State Police Investigating Single Car Rollover Crash on I-290 in Worcester


Today at approximately 11:15am, troopers from the Holden Barracks responded to I-290W in the vicinity of Exit 18 in Worcester on the report of a single vehicle rollover with injuries.  Jace Gaw 24 of Clinton, MA, the operator of the vehicle died on scene. The passenger, Amy Ferrante 26 also of Clinton, MA was transported to UMass Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.  Troopers on scene were assisted by Worcester Fire and EMS and Mass DOT.  The roadway remained partially closed until approximately 2:30pm.  The incident remains under investigation by troopers from the Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Section, Worcester State Police Detective Unit and the Holden Barracks. 

Just Landing

April 30, 2011 — This great blue heron is just landing from the other side of Firehouse Pond at the "S" turn in Woodville on Wood Street on Saturday.

Picture Perfect

April 30, 2011 — Outgoing Planning Board Chair Joe Markey poses his children, Dawson and Julia, outside the entrance to the HPTA's Green Expo at Hopkinton High School, providing a lesson in diagonals and leading lines, as well as efficient and visually pleasing use of space.

The Runway

April 30, 2011 — These girls await the start of the processional music to show off their best "swaps" at the HPTA's Green Expo in Hopkinton High School Athletic Center this afternoon.


Beautiful Instruments

April 30, 2011 — The Hopkinton High School Girls A Capella Group used only their voices for instruments Saturday afternoon, entertaining those gathered for the Green Expo at the Athletic Center.

Guess Who

April 30, 2011 — Todd Vogel made sure that everyone passing the Woodville Rod & Gun Saturday afternoon knew the identity of the electrician repairing some plow damage to the electrical fixture.


Happy Together

April 30, 2011 — These two turtles at Ice House Pond ducked under the water upon seeing the photographer, and resurfaced their heads as if their bodies are invisible.


Police Seek Information on Escaped Prisoner’s Whereabouts


Members of the Massachusetts State Police Violent Fugitive Apprehension Section, the Massachusetts Department of Correction Fugitive Apprehension Unit, and the Springfield Police Department continue to search for TAMIK KIRKLAND, 24, who escaped from the Massachusetts Correctional Institute-Shirley on April 25.


KIRKLAND’s last known address was 17 Ringgold St. in Springfield, and he continues to have ties to the Springfield area. He also has affiliation with the Maynard Street Posse street gang. He should be considered dangerous and may have access to weapons, and should not be approached by a member of the public.


KIRKLAND has a nickname of “Mattic.” He is African-American, 5’10”, 172 lbs., with black hair and brown eyes. He has a scroll-design tattoo on the inside of his right forearm. Photographs of KIRKLAND’s face and tattoo accompany this release.


Anyone with information about KIRKLAND or his whereabouts is urged to call Massachusetts State Police at 508-820-2121 or by dialing 911 on a cell phone. Those with information may also contact Springfield Police at 413-787-6300. People with information may also use the Text-A-Tip program by texting 274637 from a cell phone, then typing SOLVE and a message and hitting send.


KIRKLAND was serving a 2 ½- to 4-year state prison sentence for weapons and drug crimes at the  time of his escape. Circumstances of his escape remain under investigation by the Department of Corrections.

Note: HopNews Broadcasted live this afternoon from the Golden Spoon for about a half hour, offering free large ice cream cones to the first five readers to mention HopNews before 6:00 pm. The broadcast was on simultaneously with the Main Street web cam, proving that multiple channels will work. Thanks to those who logged on and chose to check out the webcam.

West Side Story Friday, Saturday & Sunday

Check the Interactive Calendar for times

Above, Kieran Schnur and Cassandra Clark practice at a recent dress rehearsal for West Side Story, presented by the Middle School Drama Club.

 Sick of Perfect Weddings? See below

School Committee Splits Vote on New Super Contract

by Heather Kelley

April 29, 2011 — School Committee Chair Rebecca Robak brought forward for approval a contract with the new superintendent at last night’s School Committee meeting. Superintendent Dr. Jack Phelan will retire at the end of the school year, and Dr. Jonathan Landman will begin his tenure on July 1st. Richard de Mont expressed his respect for and support of Dr. Landman, but said that he disagreed with the committee on the terms of the contract, and would therefore be voting against it. Nancy Burdick concurred, and also voted against the motion while approving of the new superintendent himself. “We’re all looking forward to working with him,” said Mrs. Robak. The committee voted to approve the contract, 3-2.

Dr. Landman has been having transition meetings with Dr. Phelan, and more will be scheduled in May and June. “He’s got incredible enthusiasm. He can’t wait to assume his position on July 1st,” said Dr. Phelan.


Dr. Phelan also announced that the district has been granted a second funded year of a Chinese teacher through the Teachers of Critical Languages Program of the American Councils for International Education. The current Chinese teacher, Jiling Pan, will return home to China, and another teacher will arrive, teaching not only Chinese culture and Chinese I, but also Chinese II so students can continue their study of the language. High School principal Alyson Geary recently returned to the district from her trip to China during spring break. She kept a blog during her travels, which can be read online at .

Director of Finance Ralph Dumas walked the School Committee through the quarterly financial report. At the previous financial update in December, it had appeared that the district would end the year with a positive variance of $163,000. That projection has now changed to $87,000, still positive. Mr. Dumas listed two contributors to this change: staffing issues, and energy usage. “We’ve had a significant number of leaves of absence,” said Mr. Dumas, for both medical and maternity reasons. Long term substitute teachers cost $218 per day, he said, and that is paid on top of the regular teacher’s salary. Mr. Dumas further explained that the high school and Hopkins are using more natural gas than expected. NSTAR has checked the meters, which are in working order.

Mrs. Robak asked where the gas was used in the buildings.

“Everywhere,” Mr. Dumas replied. “Heating and hot water, it’s all natural gas.” All school building thermostats are controlled by computer, based on outside temperatures, he said. All other school buildings are using gas at expected levels. Mr. Dumas agreed to continue looking into the issue.

The electricity budget, however, will see a savings for next year. “We’re going to save about 30% on our electricity for FY 12, in addition to the solar,” said Mr. Dumas, thanks to a new contract with an energy provider.

Mr. Dumas also reminded parents and guardians that bus fees for next year are due by June 15th. Payments can be made online.


Annual Town Meeting starts next Monday at 7 pm, and the School Committee has two articles on the warrant. Article 36 is a request for $125,000 for wiring at the Middle School. Article 37 is a request for $47,000 for an upgrade to the Middle School auditorium, primarily the projection and sound systems. The Appropriations Committee has been meeting with the School Committee, and is supporting the school budget and capital articles, said Dr. Phelan. The superintendent also invited residents to view the school budget booklet, which is available online.

Touching on the community meeting held Wednesday evening to discuss moving forward with a school project, the School Committee again expressed their interest in hearing from the community. They have a list of 31 items from the discussion, and will post them, along with all other suggestions and comments, on their website. Nancy Burdick suggested looking into having a table at town elections to see if residents have an interest in giving their email to receive electronic communication. Troy Mick agreed it was a good idea.

Continuing their review of School Committee policies, members discussed communicable diseases, whom parents should turn to with school related problems, and flyers from non-school groups that are distributed through the schools. The committee also agreed to set a date to review more policies; their goal has been to comb through all existing policies before the retirement of Assistant Superintendent Dr. Mary Colombo.

Dr. Phelan announced that two of Hopkinton’s own will be honored for their work with students. Peter Torilli, wellness teacher at Hopkins, is being inducted into the Massachusetts State Hockey Coaches Hall of Fame. And former football coach David Hughes is being inducted into the Massachusetts State Football Coaches Hall of Fame. File photo.


      Story from HHSPress

Hillers kick off world champs with top score


HHS team number 4392

Thursday April 28, 2011 — The Hopkinton High School Robotics Team stunned many by posting the highest score today at day one of the First Robotics World Championship in St Louis, MO. The Hillers first match score was only four points off the world record according to an event official.


At the end of day one, the team holds fifth place in a division of sixty-four teams from around the world. There are two divisions and a total of one hundred twenty-eight teams at the championship.


A match consists of a forty second autonomous period followed by a two minute controller driven period. The strength of the Hiller’s robot is their autonomous period programming.


The championship qualifying rounds continue on Friday and the final round will be held on Saturday April 30th. Reprinted with permission from HHSPress.




FRAMINGHAM, MA – Despite this winter’s record snowfall amounts, below freezing temperatures, and school closings, students involved in the Joseph P. Keefe Technical School annual House Building Project have pushed through to progress the construction of a home for the Chatten Family of Hopkinton.

“The snow really held us up,” said Laura Chatten, “But the students came out and worked as much as possible.”


Laura and her husband Thomas already knew that Keefe Tech students took their work on the House Building Project seriously when they submitted their application in 2010. Colleen Chatten, Thomas’ mother, had a home built through the annual program in 2003. The Chattens were then selected through the program’s random lottery system, and students began work last November.


“It’s been exciting to watch the house go up,” Chatten noted. “The students’ work is wonderful. They did a great job with my mother-in-law’s house and other builders have commented that their work is above code,” she added.


The 2,200 square foot, two-car garage California Colonial home will soon go through phases to ensure the structure is weather tight, including window and siding installation and roof shingling.


“We completed many of the interior walls while the weather was a concern at the work site and worked on the plumbing,” said John Brochu, Keefe Technical School Vocational Coordinator. “The house has progressed well considering the amount of snow we have had and the delays due to the significant amounts.”

The Chattens expect that the home will be completed by fall, when students will install the interior finish work. “This has been a wonderful experience. We feel more than lucky to be given this opportunity,” Laura noted.


The home, located at 7 Walker Street in Hopkinton, marks the eighth house built by the Joseph P. Keefe Technical School House Building Project in the town. Each year, the school constructs one home in a member town of the district for a qualified applicant selected at random. In order to qualify, the applicant must be a resident of the Keefe Tech 5-town district of Ashland, Framingham, Holliston, Hopkinton, and Natick, must own property or have a valid option of agreement for the purchase of property at the time of application, and must provide financial statements satisfactory to the district indicating ability to meet the obligations for completion of the project.


Joseph P. Keefe Technical School is a four-year high school located in Framingham, MA and is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges. In addition to 14 career and technical programs, Keefe Tech offers a complete college preparatory program to students from the communities of Ashland, Framingham, Holliston, Hopkinton and Natick.



Saturday, April 30th – 10:00am to 8:00pm

Sunday, May 1st – 1:30pm to 8:00pm

Please stop to buy your ticket before time runs out!


7th Annual HLL $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


Hopkinton Police Participate in National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

On Saturday, April 30, Hopkinton Police Department is partnering with the Drug Enforcement Administration in the second National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day to give the public an opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous, expired, unused or unwanted prescription drugs.


Controlled, non-controlled, and over-the-counter substances may be collected. No questions or requests for identification will be made. Participants may dispose of medication in its original container. All solid dosage pharmaceutical product and liquids in consumer containers will also be accepted. Liquid products, such as cough syrup, should remain sealed in their original container. Intra-venous solutions, injectibles, and syringes will not be accepted due to potential hazard posed by blood-borne pathogens.


Hopkinton Police Chief Richard Flannery invites residents to bring their medications for disposal to Hopkinton Police Headquarters at 74 Main St Saturday, April 30 from 10 AM to 2 PM.


The service is free and anonymous.

A Tussie Mussie — and Thou!


Senior Moments

Nancy L. Drawe



Those wonderful women from the Hopkinton Garden Club did it again!   They hosted another great afternoon at the Senior Center—filled with tussie mussies, roses, tea and cookies!   As they do just about every month, the Garden Club members host a project at the center that usually involves some type of floral arranging.  This time, it was for a beautiful Tussie Mussie, which is normally recognized as a “nosegay” or posy holder.  As Co-President Ruth Gorman explained to the many “crafters” in the room, a Tussie Mussie was from the Victorian Era and young lovers would use them to send messages to one another.  Also, both men and women wore them in friendship.   Ruth explained how each flower in the arrangement usually had a meaning, for instance, the rose meant love, heather meant admiration, ivy meant marriage and friendship, and fern meant sincerity.


Each person was given a whole bouquet of these flowers and greens to work with, as well as the nosegay holders, ribbons and doilies.  With the help of members Joan Luciano, Susan Brownworth, Maureen Bumiller, Meryln Mezitt and co-presidents Ruth and Leslie Skrzycpzak, everyone was able to make their own special Tussie Mussie. 


After the Tussie Mussies were all made, there was another special treat for the afternoon—everyone was invited to a Victorian Tea Party!  The tables in the dining room were all decorated with lovely tea cups and little plates filled with desserts and tiny cucumber sandwiches.  Once the guests arrived and placed their Tussie-Mussie’s on the table, the whole place came alive!  Oh, and the fragrance from all those flowers was just delightful!  It was a fun afternoon for all! 

Cheers to the members of the Hopkinton Garden Club for always hosting such special projects as well as volunteering their time and supplies.  They are such a wonderful group of women—we look forward to seeing them time after time.  Thank you so much! 


The clock is ticking again—it’s almost time for the annual Rummage Sale at the center.  This year, the dates are Thursday-May 19 and Friday-May 20 from 8-6, and Saturday-May 21 from 8-noon.  Right now, the center is collecting all your donations through May 14.   Clean out your closets and garages and bring all your clean and usable condition items to the center.  Small furniture is especially needed, but please, no computers, television, bedding or exercise equipment.   The center will greatly appreciate your donations!  More on the Rummage Sale later.


That’s it for now, so if you have any comments or suggestions, you can email me:  Until next time, have a great week! 

Recycling Center

At the Hopkinton Green Expo 2011

April 30th from 10-3


What we are recycling?

All Hard Plastic Caps (Aveda Recycles Caps)

Sneakers (Sustainable World Fund)

Styrofoam peanuts (UPS)

Eyeglasses (Lions Club)

Ink Jets (Staples)

Plastic Bags (Whole Foods)


Kids and adults should collect items in their homes; by raising awareness among their family and friends of the opportunity to recycle these items and collect them for drop off.

Participate on your own throughout the year using the above business references!

Operated by The HopMoms Club and Small Hands, Big Hearts

School Committee/Selectmen Meeting on Center School


"We Need to Continue Investing in Center School Now"

~ outgoing Planning Board Chair Joe Markey


by Muriel Kramer

April 28, 2011 — Process and communication were featured at the forum last night held by the School Committee and Board of Selectmen; many in attendance focused on improving both as the community moves forward with potential ideas to address Center School for both the near and long term.

       Planning Board Chairman Joe Markey offered that in his professional experience defining the problem is the most important part of the process, and he encouraged the boards to spend adequate time to really define what the problem or problems are at Center School before planning how to address the issues. He also pointed out that the planning that took place pursuing the new school at Fruit Street left out critical elements for near term and necessary repairs at Center School. Even if the proposal had passed, the new school would have been a couple of years out and repairs should have been addressed for the interim years.

         Jackie Potenzone (photo) spoke to the tax impact with special emphasis the impact higher taxes have on our seniors. “I’m glad you picked this place (the Senior Center)” for the meeting. Noting that many seniors on fixed incomes already struggle to pay their taxes, she added, “I can’t take on another tax burden for myself at this point. I’m looking at an uncertain financial future for my family….I have voted for every override except this one, and I don’t regret it” Potenzone also asked, “Why wasn’t there a contingency plan for repairs in the event of a ‘No’ vote?”

         Mary Pratt brought up the possibility of modular classrooms at Center School to add space more economically especially in construction cost savings by avoiding prevailing wage issues. Many in the audience agreed noting that modular classrooms are inconspicuous, comfortable, serviceable, possibly very energy efficient and much more affordable.

          Frank D’Urso encouraged the Boards to reinstate the civic engagement committee to “reach out and get a better grasp of the issues.” He additionally made the point that many attending meetings felt that their “feedback had not been heard.” Many others later in the forum stressed a similar point to keep the communication lines open, but work to ensure that there is community buy-in that is validated throughout the process.

          Many residents touched upon the issue of districting without eliciting a solid response from the boards; however, Markey drove the point home. “We had a town meeting with about 1,000 people; Town Meeting spoke loudly. I want to make sure we are listening to that feedback. Take districting out of the Strategic Plan.” He also restated that the town needs to continue investing in our current buildings while we explore long term solutions and plans. “We need to continue investing in Center School now.”

          Others in the audience encouraged the Boards to include school staff in the conversations going forward, to develop a true lessons-learned from all this, to ensure that the communication process includes validation of the approach as it is developed and loops back over time to include new parents entering the system. Other points were to revitalize civic engagement, to create a capital assets management plan for the whole town, to explore more completely senior tax relief and to fully detail out a priority list of capital projects that manages the tax impacts while implementing those projects.

          Mary Murphy spoke at length about leveraging available technologies (reverse 9-1-1, free survey sites on line, interactive web page, etc) to support a better communication process, and she also encouraged a purposeful shift towards making the effort to engage feedback by working to welcome newcomers to the process and encourage participation.

         Mary Pratt added a suggestion to work creatively to solve the complexities involved. For example, in working to schedule necessary repairs over the summer, consider adjusting the schedule to allow more time in the summer and less week long vacations during the school year. Older buildings can and should be maintained she asserted; “the schools are our biggest investment.”

         Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Jack Phelan, commented that “at the end of the day, they are the community’s schools; we need a solution that is validated by the community.”

Historic District Commission Meets & Discusses Position on Library Articles

Permanent Building Committee and Library Trustees Join them

April 27, 2011 — The Hopkinton Historic District Commission (HHDC) met this evening as a result of lobbying by Town manager Norman Khumalo and Selectmen Chair RJ Dourney on behalf of the Library Trustees and the Permanent Building Committee (PBC), who felt left out of the process of the HHDC's recent vote. The HHDC voted to not support a zoning change Article (49) that would support the library's expansion design. The design of the library appears as an additional Article (53) for Monday's Town Meeting, which the HHDC also voted to not support.

      The process resulted in a letter from the HHDC to the Selectmen about the vote that was made three days after the Articles were firmly established on April 18, 2011. 

      This evening, the Chairman of the HHDC Michael Girardi (center of photo) began the meeting with an apology to the other boards for not including them in the CC list or inviting them to the meeting where the vote was taken.

       Tonight's meeting then moved to a grilling by Trustees and PBC members asking why the HHDC hadn't taken action sooner.

       Speaking to the time frame, Mr. Girardi said they acted three days after the Articles were voted. "I see it as a natural evolution of our decision making process," he said. "We've been asked by citizens to maintain the historic character of the district," he added. The Downtown Historic District extends from Center School to Hopkinton Gourmet, and includes the first few houses on Hayden Rowe Street. Developers or owners in the district wanting to make exterior changes to their building need to go before the commission to obtain a Certificate of Appropriateness.

        Although the Trustees and the PBC insisted that the design was preliminary, they said it was part of the grant application to the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) and could not be altered. PBC member Scott Richardson, a proponent of large buildings Downtown, said it perhaps could be appealed after it was voted in.

        Member of the PBC, John Carroll, told the gathering, "If the town heeds the HDC recommendation [at Town Meeting], the project is dead in the water."

        Library Trustee Laura Barry said that the next round of funding for new libraries has not been announced, and that it could take years to come around again.

        Selectman Michele Gates, who was present at the entire meeting, as well as her board's meeting last night where the members of the HHDC got lambasted in their absence, asked what teeth the HHDC letter had.

         "It is an opinion," Mr. Girardi said. "We only react [statutorily] based on an application for a certificate." But he made it clear that the opinion was spot on with their viewpoint of the project.

         Center School abutter John Pavlov said he had not been notified by the Library Trustees or the PBC of any of their plans, and asked neighbor and HHDC member Beth Kelly if she had been. A loud chorus of "No" coming from abutters and others present joined Mrs. Kelly in her answer.

         Abutter Sue Hadley asked how the 22,000 square foot project could be scaled down if it fails at Town Meeting.

         "I don't hear anything that would change," said Mr. Girardi.

         The Trustees said they would ask the Town Moderator to reverse the Articles so that the zoning change gets voted on only after voters know if the library design has passed. Mr. Richardson said he would vote for the zoning change even of the design gets shot down, a position the abutters have expressed opposition to.

          Referring to the ordering of the Articles, Mr. Gerardi said, "Something smells fishy."

         HHDC member Beth Kelley, an abutter to the Town Common, said that the architect's drawing should have the abutters' buildings on them (e. g. satellite photo, above), but they do not (drawing above). The conceptual plans that have been presented instead show trees and grass where people reside.

         Mr. Girardi insisted that the future drawings show the views from all sides, because the views are what concerns his commission.

          "It is just too big," he said of the building design.




All content on this site and linked pages within this domain and affiliate domains are ©2009 Hopkinton News and may not reproduced in any form without written permission. Learn more.