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Auditions for ESL’s Christmas Carol on September 6

HOPKINTON, MA (September 3, 2011) – Enter Stage Left Theater will be holding auditions for A Christmas Carol from 7:00-9:00 p.m., at the HCA Farmhouse (98 Hayden Rowe St.) on September 6. Call backs will be on September 7.


This Charles Dickens classic was adapted by Roberta Weiner and Dawn Anderson and will be directed by Dawn Anderson. The cast will be all-ages; (adults play adult roles, children play children's roles). Auditions will consist of readings from the script. Rehearsals will be Mondays and Wednesdays, from 7:00-9:00, with a few exceptions. Performances will take place the first two weekends of December at the Hopkinton Historical Society. For more information call 508-435-2114 or visit www.enterstagelefttheater.org




Hopkinton -Ashland Youth Football and Cheerleading gets under way on Monday, September 5th (Labor Day!).


Games will be played at all levels beginning at 9:00am with the A team (Grades 7 and 8) and go all day through 3pm. HAYF&C is comprised of over 200 boys and girls from Hopkinton and Ashland.


This weekend’s games will be played at the Hopkinton High School fields verses Hockomock League powerhouse, Plymouth. Admission is FREE! Please swing down and support the local youth football players and cheerleaders and officially welcome in the 2011 football season!

Go Raiders!






Ashland Sgt. Zanella Retires After 42 Years

September 2, 2011 — Ashland Police Sergeant Steven Zanella retired from the department Wednesday August 31st, after 42 years of service. Having grown up in town, he was appointed to the police department on July 28, 1969. Sgt. Zanella (center, in uniform), who is known by most in the community, has served in various roles including: Patrol officer, Detective, Juvenile Officer, and Sergeant---most recently commanding the 3pm to 11pm shift.


A luncheon was held for him on Wednesday at the Ashland Community Center to recognize his dedicated service to the Ashland community.


Steve’s retirement creates a huge void in the department that simply cannot be filled. He has served with honor and integrity for 42 years and will be sorely missed, “ stated Ashland Police spokesperson Lt. Richard Briggs.


Zanella will still be a frequent contributor to the Department and Community, serving as a Special Police Officer, working traffic details and special events.


WE WERE LIVE! From the Marathon Restaurant at North Pond

HopNews set up shop around noontime and gave away 2 - $25 gift certificates for food and drink -

thanks for logging on, winners Maryann Brayer and Cheryl Ward.



Soldier Thanks Two Hopkinton Churches for their Support

Soldier aided through the AdoptaPlatoon Program, which seeks more help


HOPKINTON, MASS, (August 30, 2011) --- St. Paul’s Episcopal and Grace United Methodist Churches are holding a prayer and dedication ceremony on Sunday, September 11th at 11:30 a.m. to honor and proudly display a special thank-you gift from the Churches’ Adopt-a-Soldier, Evelina. Evelina has just finished her deployment in Iraq, and both churches sent her supportive care packages, cards, and letters while she was stationed there. She thanked both churches by sending them a flag, bearing the colors of the United States of America. This flag is unique, since it was flown on the side of an Army helicopter during a support mission. The ceremony will take place at the churches’ shared facilities at 61 Wood Street in Hopkinton. All are welcome to attend.


The Churches’ contact person received Evelina’s name and address from the AdoptaPlatoon organization and agreed to send Evelina care packages once a month and weekly letters and cards. Evelina is the third soldier who has been supported by the Hopkinton Churches. Currently, because Evelina’s deployment has ended, both churches are eagerly awaiting the name of their next soldier for AdoptaPlatoon.

More Help Needed for Deployed Soldiers

“We are very touched by Evelina’s gratitude and the gift of this flag,” said Nancy Jennison, chair of St. Paul’s Mission Outreach Committee. “The AdoptaPlatoon program has been a great way for members of both churches to help deployed soldiers on a very personal level by sending them morale-boosting packages and letters. Currently, they have a desperate need for more help, so we are hoping other churches, groups or even individuals will help by either adopting a soldier or becoming a pen pal to a deployed soldier. It’s a wonderful and rewarding way to help those in the armed services.”


CAA Call for Art for On the Edge Exhibition


HOPKINTON, MA (August 30, 2011) --- The Cultural Arts Alliance of Hopkinton (CAA) is issuing a call for art for its On the Edge exhibition that will take place September 30 – October 28 at the CAA Gallery. The exhibition is being juried by Jane Young of the Chase Young Gallery in Boston. First prize is $300 and a solo show, and second prize is $150 and a solo show.


All 2D media, including photography, as well as 3D work that can be hung on a wall and does not protrude more than 10 inches will be accepted. Entries must have been completed within the past two years and not entered in any previous CAA shows. Art drop off dates are September 23 and 24 at the CAA offices at 98 Hayden Rowe, Hopkinton.


“We are looking for artists to interpret what "On the Edge" means for them,” said Kris Waldman, director of the CAA. “It may be a memory of a place, a psychological space, or the work itself that appears "edgy.”


More information and a prospectus and a registration form are available at www.caahop.org/artists/call-for-artists/



School Committee Welcomes New Administrators

by Helen Prunty Krispien

September 2, 2011 — The Hopkinton School Committee was in good form last night as committee members set about taking care of their extensive agenda.
With the Recognitions and Presentations segment, the newly appointed Superintendent, Dr. Jonathan Landman (photo, left) welcomed other new administrators to the Hopkinton roster. Mary Jane Hackett was introduced as the Director of Social Services, Maryellen Grady, a former 8th grade English teacher no longer heralds the arrival of a new crop of classroom students, but will tackle the position of Assistant Principal at the Middle School.

Dr. Christopher Kennedy is now the Principal at Center School and Xiaona Wang was recognized for her successful service as a second year exchange teacher of Mandarin Chinese.


"Hopkinton is a perfect place to live in and work in. People are hospitable and the students are well-behaved and cooperative, and eager to learn," she said.


School Committee member Rebecca Robak related the fact that Hopkinton High School was rated #2 in the Commonwealth by Newsweek Magazine after meeting certain criteria including among other things, the AP courses offered and scores recorded.

Center School was again in the mix as some audience members addressed concerns. During the summer the School Building Assessment Committee assessed the strengths of the Center School project, with the Facility Improvement Needs coming up with realistic costs and time lines as a resolution for Center School

The School Committee and the Superintendent are very keen to have all lines of communication open to the public which currently uses ListServ that traditionally reaches the "mom" group and not other age groups. The Committee wants to reach out to other adult community residents who do not have school age children. The Superintendent says he wants to hear from people to form ideas about the system and wants to be influenced by them.

Director of Buildings and Grounds, Al Rogers gave a run-down of repairs and improvements to the Hopkinton schools, which included 80% of the work done at the Middle School with lock set proprietary replacement keys that cannot be reproduced. This means a door can be locked from inside should the case of a shut down arise. Other highlights are a fence installed around the Elmwood playground and renovated lockers at the Middle and High Schools and a walkway and bench expansions at Hopkins School.

On September 19 the Strategic Planning Leadership Retreat is to be held. The Committee discussed what sessions are necessary, and how an action plan is needed to realize their goals.

Dr. Landman took a Walk-About and visited the schools. He delighted in showing slides of Senior- year students acting as a Welcoming Committee to incoming new students. More than 400 athletes are taking to the athletic fields this year.

As for the School Committee's website, all were in agreement to have a high level executive summary that is conclusive in highlighting the important facts and thus make it more efficient.

Emphasis was placed on the fact that the Building Committee and School Committee need to work together have a rationale to change relationship to other committees.

Another topic discussed was bus switching. As Proposed, for grades K-5, "No day to day bus switching will be allowed and starting the Monday of the third week of school, students may be dropped off at an approved stop on the student's regular bus route with a note to the school from their parents. And for Grades 6-12 bus switching will be allowed at dismissal time for those students with a bus pass, subject to seat availability and for  approved stops on the route. Bus switching will not be allowed on early release days and no large groups will be allowed."



Grazin' in the Grass

September 1, 2011 — Like the butterfly and bumblebee who will share the same flower for nectar, these deer and turkeys graze together on a fire road off of Flanders Road, a couple of minutes from the Hopkinton line; well, they were grazing until they became aware of the photographer a couple of hundred feet away. Then the deer high-tailed it into the woods and the turkeys oozed into the brush.


Proud as a Gull

September 1, 2011 — It isn't the national symbol, but this seagull atop the roof of the Hopkinton State Park beach house is in better shape than the flag flying behind it, all tattered and torn.




What About the Donuts?

September 1, 2011 — Maura Stanley shares this sign from an apparently powerless home on Sterling Drive. Barely visible in the bottom left corner is a variation ("Free coffee") of the adage, "You can get more bees with honey than with vinegar."

        Above the note appears to be a paper coffee cup stuck on the poster.


Needham Doctor Arraigned On Charges Of  Illegally Prescribing Controlled Substances

Allegedly Prescribed 58,000 Percocet to 3 Patients


            WOBURN– A doctor was arraigned today on nine counts of illegally prescribing controlled substances, Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone informed the public today.

             Kathaleen Porter, 59, of Needham Heights, was arraigned this morning in Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn on charges of illegally prescribing controlled substances (9 counts) and furnishing false information in an application.  Middlesex Superior Court Judge Bruce Henry released the defendant with the conditions that she surrender her Schedule II Drug Enforcement Administration License, must not travel outside of New England without prior court approval, must surrender her passport, must not commit any new offenses, and is required to update the Department of Public Health with respect to her new license status.

             Her next court date is October 12 for a pretrial conference.  

            According to authorities, in the winter of 2009, the Massachusetts State Police Diversion Unit received a complaint from a pharmacy in Framingham regarding the amount of prescriptions for Percocet being filled by a certain customer.  Upon further inquiry into these prescriptions, State Police discovered that the patient was utilizing approximately 12 different pharmacies to fill prescriptions, but would not utilize the pharmacy closest to his home.  State Police began an inquiry to determine who was writing the prescriptions or if they were forgeries.  Through surveillance and interviews they learned that the patient was receiving signed prescriptions for Percocet from Dr. Kathleen Porter. 

            At approximately the same time, the Unites States Drug Enforcement Administration Diversion Unit was investigating the staggering amount of prescriptions for Percocet being written by Dr. Porter.  A continuation of the investigation revealed that Dr. Porter was a surgeon who practiced in the town of Natick and usually conducted surgical procedures at Metro-West Hospital.  The investigation revealed that Dr. Porter had three patients that were receiving an alarming amount of Percocet prescriptions.  During the years 2007, 2008 and 2009, each patient would receive prescriptions from Dr. Porter for large amounts of Percocet pills.

During the investigation, Dr. Porter admitted to being the surgeon for the three named patients and prescribing the pills.  Additionally, she admitted that she had not physically examined nor properly viewed the patients for a year and a half while prescribing the Percocet.  Each patient confirmed that they would simply call Dr. Porter’s phone and ask for the Percocet, they would sometimes direct her as to how much to give them and how many prescriptions they would need.  Dr. Porter would then, without seeing the patient, write the prescription and tape it to her closed office door. The three patients would pick up the prescriptions and fill them at various pharmacies.  Each patient confirms that they are drug dependant and are seeking treatment and sobriety.  The total amount of pills for all three patients was over 58,000 Percocet pills. 

Dr. Porter was not billing any insurance company or Mass Health, however, her unrelated surgical actions were under review by the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine since 2007.  During her application for renewal of her DEA license to handle controlled substances, which includes prescribing, she falsely stated that there was no action pending regarding her state license. 





Tonight, September 1, 2011

6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Hopkinton Middle School - side access


The Hopkinton Emergency Management Group and the School District will be providing emergency showering facilities for the residents of Hopkinton who have been affected by Tropical Storm Irene. The showering facility has been established at the Hopkinton Middle School. Facilities access is through the entrance adjacent to the water tanks. Hours of operation will commence tonight at 6:00 pm and will operate until 9:00 pm this evening. Residents taking advantage of the showering facility should bring their own towels and please expect potential delays in accessing the shower facility. Thank you for you continued cooperation and patience.

P. Kenneth Clark

Chief of Department

Hopkinton Fire Department

Town of Hopkinton Emergency Management Director


Life Imitates Art

September 1, 2011 — Looking a bit like a ceramic heart dining room centerpiece today, the HopNews roving camera caught these mute swans at Arcade Pond in Whitinsville as their young, the wings still grey, looked on from a short distance away.



Missing Person Located

Steven Thomas GAUNYA, a 70 year old Hopkinton resident who was last seen leaving his residence on Wednesday August 24, 2011, was reported missing last week by concerned family members. Hopkinton Police, seeking the public's help, notified the press and entered his name into a national database of missing persons. Since then, there have been several reports of sightings of Mr. Gaunya in Hopkinton.

        Last night, Officer William Burchard located Mr. Gaunya in Hopkinton, asked him about his absence from home, as well as his condition, and notified his supervising sergeant. After determining that the individual was safe and aware, police notified his family and took him out of the database.





Selectmen Host Gambling Pow-Wow

State Rep Carolyn Dykema says House has more than the 81 votes necessary to pass gambling legislation

Selectman Ben Palleiko says gambling promoters should be ashamed

August 31, 2011 — by Muriel Kramer

Fire Chief Ken Clark and Police Chief Rick Flannery updated the Selectmen and Town on the status of clean-up efforts following Sunday’s storm. 435 families are still without power in Hopkinton; in response to the continuing outage for those families, shower facilities were available at the Middle School from 5 to 8 PM this evening. If necessary, they will be available again tomorrow night. To take advantage of the shower facilities if necessary tomorrow night, enter the Middle School from the water tower entrance. Additionally, for residents without power and water, drinking water is available at the Grove Street tanks. According to Eric Carty, Superintendent of the Water Department, interested residents can fill up water containers behind the brown garage; the sanitized faucet is labeled.

       In response to questions about NSTAR’s presence (or lack thereof) in town making repairs, Town Manager Norman Khumalo detailed NSTAR’s established prioritization schedule for repairs. First priorities are main circuits, then sub-circuits and then street level. They are also prioritizing in order sewer treatment facilities, elderly housing, and critical care patients. No forecast was given for power to be restored to those 435 families in Hopkinton still without power.

       Residents are cautioned to be careful of trees still coming down and downed or sagging power lines. There are also extended hours at the Town Recycling Center for brush and leaves; residents can drop off storm debris Tuesday through Friday from 8AM to 4PM or on Saturday from 7:30AM to 4PM. Norman Khumalo praised the emergency response team and thanked residents for their response. “The patience of the residents has been remarkable.”

       The bulk of the meeting was devoted to gauging the response of residents to the Casino Gambling legislation progressing through the legislative process on Beacon Hill. Not one person in attendance at the meeting spoke in favor of expanding gambling in Massachusetts.

       The Selectmen are unanimously opposed. Selectman Ben Palleiko spoke strongly in opposition. Beyond the obvious social costs and impacts, he made the point that the State would like to suggest that this is about job creation and economic growth. Palleiko countered, “This is not about jobs; this is about the State looking for ways to get money to fund itself.” Palleiko acknowledged that there will be construction jobs, most temporary, as well as some high level management positions. “The vast majority will not be jobs worth having.” To suggest anyone would find it desirable to have their son grow up to be a black jack dealer or their daughter a cocktail waitress is ridiculous according to Palleiko. “Everyone involved in promoting Casino Gambling should be ashamed.”

       Palleiko continued, “I am terribly troubled by this bill for Hopkinton.” Given that it seems to be a fait accompli, Palleiko argued that the bill should be sure to have ironclad protections for the towns surrounding and affected by the Casino locations. “It is absolutely crucial that the legislation have ironclad protections for towns like us.” Further he urged State Representative Carolyn Dykema and State Senator Karen Spilka to vote against the legislation.

       Selectman Gates addressed Palleiko’s point on cocktail waitresses and dealers. “There is a place for all types of employment."

      Palleiko responded, “I would never denigrate any form of honest employment. That said, you do not create sustainable growth by merely offering employment opportunities like that.”

       John Mosher agreed that expanded gambling is unlikely to be a big benefit by way of job creation. Agreeing perhaps, that the proposal “looks good on paper.” Mosher continued, “I’ve been to Las Vegas, and it’s a nice place to visit. I wouldn’t want to live there. I’d pick Hopkinton every time.”

       Representative Dykema was on hand; she shares the common concerns with expanded gaming in general and is skeptical about the optimistic revenue estimates. “I intend to vote against the bill.” But she recognizes that there is a high likelihood that the bill will pass. “How can we make sure our concerns around mitigation and impacts are addressed?”

       Many residents stepped forward to speak, and all spoke against expanded gaming in Massachusetts. RJ Dourney asserted that gaming is not appropriate for this area. “We (Hopkinton) would be dealing with all downside and none of the upside. No mitigation will be enough. There are communities that would look at gaming as a positive, let them have it. We are going to organize against this. It’ll be a fight.”

       Mary Murphy spoke against the proposed legislation as well. Harkening back to her time on school Counsel trying to tackle cheating issues at the High School, the group promoted a mantra, “We’re better than that, we’re Hillers.”

       “We are better than this, we are better than casinos.” Murphy urged Dykema to “go back to those people, be the voice of reason. Remind them they will be up for re-election soon.”

       Dykema responded by making it clear that her constituents were being heard loudly and clearly; they do not support this bill. However, many across the state do support it. Residents are urged to reach out to like minded family and friends across the state to contact their representatives and urge them to vote against the bill.

       Brian Herr finished the meeting by challenging the leadership on Beacon Hill “to look at this through a clear set of glasses. Are we going in the right direction? Is this a positive direction?”




Leave it to the Professionals

August 31, 2011 — Tree expert Joe Regan showed up to a job to find this staged scene, and then added his saw to make it complete.


First Day

August 31, 2011 — Julia Markey, 8, who entered third grade today, is aglow as she waits at the bus stop for the trip to Elmwood School with mom, Bernadette, who keeps a camera handy for just such occasions.



More Chipmunk

August 31, 2011 — Can't have enough chipmunk photos like this one on North Mill Street today, that ran in front of the photographer's vehicle and posed for a photograph, as if by intent.


Holding Strong

August 31, 2011 — Hay bales and silt fences are a necessary barrier during construction to keep earth from moving off of a construction site and into wetlands and waterways. Above at the corner of South and West Main Streets, the future site of the Price Chopper Supermarket at the tail end of Irene, the materials have done their job.

Suffer no more!


The Hopkinton Emergency Management Group and the School District will be providing emergency showering facilities for the residents of Hopkinton who have been affected by Tropical Storm Irene. The showering facility has been established at the Hopkinton Middle School. Facilities access is through the entrance adjacent to the water tanks. Hours of operation will commence tonight at 6:00 pm and will operate until 9:00 pm this evening. Residents taking advantage of the showering facility should bring their own towels and please expect potential delays in accessing the shower facility. Thank you for you continued cooperation and patience.

P. Kenneth Clark

Chief of Department

Hopkinton Fire Department

Town of Hopkinton Emergency Management Director




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