Thursday, February 26, 2015

Franklin Cultural Festival: Application and Process Info


Attached, please find the application package for the Franklin Cultural Festival performances and events. The Festival will take place between July 29 and August 2, 2015, and will celebrate the Performing Arts, the Fine Arts and the Culinary Arts.

The application package includes a briefing memo that explains the Festival and the application process. Additionally, it includes information about dates, times and potential locations. There is a 3-page application and a map of the proposed Franklin Cultural District. 
screen grab of proposed Franklin Cultural District
screen grab of proposed Franklin Cultural District

As you read these materials please note:

1. The deadline for application: April 17, 2015 at 5:00 PM. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.

2. All applications must be emailed to the programming committee at the following email address:

3. If you want to apply for more than one performance or more than one event, you will need to complete a separate application form for each performance or event.

4. For questions or additional information, please email the Programming Committee at the following address:

Should you know of other people with a Franklin connection who would be interested in participating in the Franklin Cultural Festival you may forward these materials to them. You may also give them our email address to contact us directly.

We look forward to celebrating Franklin through the Franklin Cultural Festival!

With appreciation,
The Programming Committee

Student choice for graduation robe color

From Pantherbook we find and share the results on the graduation gown discussion that took place in and around Franklin High School recently. Student Editor Caroline Cafasso writes:

On Friday, February 5, the FHS Student Government finalized the plans for the FHS graduation robes after a student poll showed that almost 69% of those who voted support having each student choose between blue and white for what color graduation robe they want to wear. 
Student government allowed the student body to have the final say in the matter. After several weeks of discussion, they gathered the most feasible and popular options in a Google poll where everyone could vote via Its Learning. 
According to Class of 2015 President Conor Lemanowicz, FHS voted overwhelmingly for the option to have each student choose his/her own graduation robe color between blue and white. 
“I was very satisfied with the result,” Conor said. “It was a compromise that was able to satisfy the vast majority of the student body. Ultimately our goal was to eliminate any gender discrimination in the robe tradition in a manner that would be acceptable for the students. I think we achieved that goal.” 

FHS student celebration at graduation (Pantherbook photo)
FHS student celebration at graduation (Pantherbook photo)

- See more at:

Related posts

FOX 25 story from Dec 2014

The Franklin Matters posting sharing Pantherbook article on the issue

Fund raiser for the 8th grade students of BFCCPS

Residents of Franklin,

As the bitter cold of this long winter continues, here is an opportunity for some fun.

The 8th grade Parents of Benjamin Franklin Charter School are having a fun-raiser this Friday,February 27, 2015.

It's a PAINTNITE to be held at the Franklin Art Center from 6:30-8:30pm.

The proceeds of this fun-raiser are going to help offset the cost of the 8th grade students trip to Washington D.C. in April.

It promises to be a fun night, to be out with friends, a girl's evening out perhaps, or catch up with old friends.

Either way, we would love to have you stop by and give it a try, all the while keeping in mind that it is going to benefit the students.

BFCCPS sign on a sunny day - think spring!
BFCCPS sign on a sunny day - think spring!

Please follow the link to sign up

We hope to see you there,

Thank you,
8th grade Parents

Floral Design Workshops in partnership with Hillside Nurseries

The Center for Adult Education and Community Learning at Franklin, in conjunction with Hillside Nurseries, is pleased to offer their first Floral Design Partnership Seminars, a five week program developed to introduce you to the pleasures, satisfaction and financial opportunities of exploring the art of floral design. Whether you are interested in floral design for your own personal occasions or the various seasons of the year or you are considering a floral design career of your own, this series will give you the opportunity to explore.

These hands-on evening classes with Brenda, Sandra and Karen – designers who are part of the Hillside Nurseries team with more than 135 combined years of experience – will guide you through an exciting adventure. 

You can register for all of the courses or just one – it’s up to you. It’s a program that will fit your schedule. Your registration fee is all inclusive and will provide you with a finished product that you can take with you each week.

All classes will start promptly at 6:30 pm and end at 8:30 pm on Tuesday evenings. Space is limited so register early.

Register for the entire series for $250 OR Register for an individual class and pay $55 for each class.

Just go to and click on Adult Ed to get started.

March 10 – Dish Garden in a Basket – Stunning varieties of fresh green plants will be used to create your classic dish garden. Echoing a time-honored tradition that began centuries ago in Asia, this rich garden of greenery will add unique style to your home.

March 17 – Bulb Garden with Tulips, Hyacinth and Daffodils – Easy-to-grow Bulb Gardens explode with color – a whole garden’s worth of beauty nestled into an attractive container. You will love an array of colors, forms and fragrances creating a beautiful parade of brilliant blooms. Your home will be painted with the amazing shades of spring long after (or before) it’s here.

March 24 – Short-stem Mixed Rose Arrangement –The same quality as long-stem roses – just a little shorter! You will find the special ‘shorty’s’ range is simply perfect for all occasions – whether you’re celebrating a romantic anniversary, saying thank you, or wishing somebody special a happy birthday, you can’t go far wrong with this beautiful bouquet….and this is the class where you learn how to build it.

April 7 – 18” Silk Forsythia Wreath – Embrace spring and summer with a brilliant Yellow Silk Forsythia Wreath. The traditional yellow forsythia pops from a twiggy perch and seems to sport a gorgeous breath.

April 14 – Mixed Arrangement – Can’t decide which type of flower you like best? You don’t have to! This session will show you how to create flower bouquets with an assortment of flower types, perfect for any occasion or recipient.

Franklin High School on a winter's night
Franklin High School on a winter's night

About The Center for Adult Education Community Learning at Franklin

The Center for Adult Education Community Learning at Franklin is a program of the Franklin Public Schools Lifelong Learning Institute and is dedicated to providing quality learning experiences for adults in the Town of Franklin and surrounding communities. Diverse and enriched education and experiences are the goals of The Center for Adult Education and Community Learning at Franklin. 
~ Our commitment extends to working professionals, senior citizens, persons with special needs and those in transition 
For more information, please contact The Center for Adult Education office at 508-613-1480 or email

Reminder: Culinary Cabaret at THE BLACK BOX - Mar 6th

The Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC) presents Culinary Cabaret 2015 on Friday, March 6, from 7-11 p.m. at THE BLACK BOX, 15 West Central Street, in downtown Franklin. The fourth annual signature food and wine event showcases the culinary and performing arts, featuring masterful dishes and gourmet specialties. A culinary-themed silent auction will feature quality cookware, wine and experiences for the food lover. The evening includes music and entertainment by FPAC special guest artists and Electric Youth.

FPAC is pleased to partner with exceptional area chefs and restaurants to present an innovative evening of inspired cuisine. Savor fine wines, craft beer, and delicious appetizers, desserts and dishes from Annie’s Just Desserts, The Cake Bar, Campania Ristorante, Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, Genji Sushi, Incontro, J & L Catering, Pour Richard’s Wine & Spirits, Salt & Olive, Tavolino, Twelve Fine Food & Spirits, Whole Foods Market, 3 Restaurant and more. THE BLACK BOX, FPAC’s new theater, music and event venue, provides a dynamic setting to eat, drink, learn and celebrate.
Pictured from Franklin's 3 Restaurant are Executive Chef Chad Terry and General Manager Brian Ravella
Pictured from Franklin's 3 Restaurant are
Executive Chef Chad Terry and General Manager Brian Ravella

With the return of Culinary Cabaret 2015, FPAC is proud to once again spotlight some of the finest culinary talent in Boston’s MetroWest region, pairing food and art of outstanding creative caliber, with an impressive roster of vendors.

This year’s event welcomes back several founding partners, including Davio’s, Tavolino and Whole Foods Market. Led by General Manager Tom Perruna and Executive Chef Greg Galano, Tavolino treated guests to seared Ahi tuna and braised calamari at Culinary Cabaret's launch in 2012. This year, the team will prepare pan-seared scallops, crushed cashews and local seaweed salad, as well as duck confit ravioli served with a toasted walnut risotto and a port wine reduction. Davio’s Executive Chef Paul King will serve up prime beef short rib and butternut squash purée, garnished with crispy leeks. Among the 2015 new event partners, Incontro will present guests with several selections, including pork rillette with pickles, mustard, herbs and micro greens with crusty bread, as well as house-made lemon ricotta and grilled asparagus.
Culinary Cabaret
Culinary Cabaret

Pour Richard’s will partner restaurant stations with representatives from wineries and distributors, who will pour wines specifically chosen to complement the chef-prepared specialties. Reflecting Pour Richard’s “Never Drink Ordinary” motto, beverages will feature small producers, high quality and eclectic selection, including wines from Carol Shelton Vineyards, Sine Metu, Wente Vineyards, Pedroncelli Vineyards, Tiefenbrunner and many more, as well as craft beer, Irish Whiskey, Coole Swan Irish Cream and a signature cocktail created by Ipswich's own Privateer Rum. Pour Richard’s will also feature a single cask, single malt Scotch tasting, led by Scotch Master Charlie Tower, representing Douglas of Drumlanrig, Old Malt Cask and Malt Man selections. These are rare and delicious whiskies, many produced in lots of only 150 total bottles.

Tickets for Culinary Cabaret are $75 and fully inclusive of the evening’s food, wine, beer and entertainment. Purchase tickets online at or by phone at 508-528-3370. Event proceeds support Electric Youth’s 2015 European summer concert tour and EY’s mission to give back through musical performance, education and ambassadorship. Culinary Cabaret 2015 media sponsors are The Milford Daily News and WMRC.

The direct link for tickets via THE BLACK BOX is here

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

FHS Hockey tops Xaverian 3-2 in OT

From Hockomock Sports, we share the news on the OT win for the FHS boys hockey team to get to the Super 8 tourney.

When it comes to narratives, take your pick. 
Franklin twice battled back from one-goal deficits, scoring the game-tying goal with under a minute to play. 
Ryan Shea committed robbery, getting a piece of Jake Farrell’s shot midway through the third period with the Panthers down 2-1. 
Ryan Shea (left) made 32 saves in net while Ryan Spillane (right) scored the game-winning goal in overtime. (Ryan Lanigan/
Ryan Shea (left) made 32 saves in net while Ryan Spillane (right) scored the game-winning goal in overtime. (Ryan Lanigan/
Defenseman Nick Morris, who missed out of a good chance in the first period, was the one to tie the game for Franklin with 31.7 seconds left.

DJ Shea scored the biggest goal of his season, just his fifth, with just under 10 minutes to play to tie the game, tipping home a shot from Morris after a good hustle play from Kyle Lundgren, a third-liner. 
And finally, there was Ryan Spillane, this year’s Hockomock League MVP, who buried the puck 2:36 into overtime just after setting up a play with linemate Alec Borkowski to give the Panthers a thrilling 3-2 win over Xaverian in a Super 8 play-in game. 
With the win, Franklin is officially a member of the Super 8 field and will take on #2 Malden Catholic on Sunday night at 6:00 at the Tsongis Arena.
Continue reading this article at Hockomock Sports

"what was left out was the community"

From the Milford Daily News article on the memorial policy decision:

“I’m very pleased that our public school system can now accept gifts to enhance the school and the community,” Graci said in a phone interview following the meeting. 
Referring to the support she received, she said, “This is how the Franklin community has always been. When someone is in need, they respond.” 
Trevor Clement had been the most vocal board member against the policy, arguing that schools should not immortalize any one student over another. Before Tuesday's vote, however, he revealed in a prepared statement that he had changed his mind. 
“It has been a large discussion by the community, and your voices have been heard by us, certainly by me,” Clement said, adding that stories of “remembrance and loss” had moved him.
Continue reading the article here:

the proposed Kristin Graci Class of 2007 Memorial
the proposed Kristin Graci Class of 2007 Memorial

Related posts:

Reminder: Franklin's 237th Birthday is a good reason for a party!

The Franklin Historical Commission will celebrate our town's birthday with a party at the Museum on Sunday March 1st.

The public is invited and encouraged to join the Commission for cake and refreshments as we commemorate the Town of Franklin's 237th Birthday.

Originally to be named Exeter when the charter was filed on March 2, 1778, our town took the name Franklin after the famous diplomat and revolutionary, Benjamin Franklin
Local residents who were born on March 2nd have received an invitation from Historical Commission Chairperson, Debbie Pellegri, inviting them to the museum to celebrate their shared birthday with the town. 

From young children to seniors, as many as 88 town residents have a March 2nd birthday. All invitees in attendance born on March 2nd, will be entered in a free raffle for a $100 prize!

Sunday March 1st, 1:00PM, Franklin Historical Museum, 80 West Central Street, Franklin.

The Franklin Historical Museum in warmer times
The Franklin Historical Museum in warmer times

For additional information on the Museum and exhibts, visit their webpage

Reminder: Speaker's Forum - Franklin Fire Dept - Mar 11

Franklin Odd Fellows
Franklin Odd Fellows

Our 5th in a series of public talks 
at the Franklin Library, we present to you:

Franklin Fire Dept
Franklin Fire Dept

Fire Chief, Gary McCarraher and Firefighter Paramedic, Keith Darling

Wednesday, March 11, 2015. 7:00 pm

Franklin Public Library, Community Room (Downstairs)

1. Chief McCarraher will give an introduction to Franklin Fire and an Overview of the Department history 
2. FF Darling will give statistics on the “Calls for Service” 
3. FF Darling will go over Staffing 
4. FF Darling will review our Operations Section – Fire, EMS, Hospital Point of Entry and “All Hazards” Response 
5. FF Darling will review our Fire Prevention and Arson Investigation Sections 
6. FF Darling will review our SAFE Program. Keith is our Student Awareness of Fire Education Coordinator as well as our Senior Citizen Student Awareness of Fire Education Coordinator. Keith will also discuss the Department’s Home Visit Program 
7. A Power Point Presentation will be given during the talk

For more about the Franklin Odd Fellows visit their webpage

Franklin Library: Geneology Program - Mar 1 - 3:00 PM

Getting started in Geneology? Geneologist Lindsay Fulton from the New England Historic Geneology Society will speak about how to get started.

This is scheduled for the Franklin Library on Sunday, March 1 at 3:00 PM

getting started in geneology - Mar 1
getting started in geneology - Mar 1

This was shared from the Franklin Library webpage

In the News: Dean goes energy efficient; MassDOT looks for potholes

Dean College took a break this week from celebrating its 150th anniversary to announce completion of a campus-wide energy efficiency project expected to save it nearly $700,000 over the next five years. 

- See more at:

MassDOT is enlisting the public’s help reporting potholes on state roads. Drivers are encouraged to call  857-368-4636, toll-free at 877-623-6846 or online

- See more at:

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Memorial Gift Timeline

From Rita Graci and the Franklin Athletes Never Quit page on Facebook:
Somehow during the discussion and debate on a “Memorial Policy” the discussion has now become about a family who may or may not have the means, power and resources to change a policy because they think they are “entitled” to change the rules. How and why has this happened? I can assure you this is not the case and it was never the intention of the Panther donation in memory of our daughter Kristin. Personally, I would like to throw the towel in on this game and give up. I am glad my daughter and son have been taught differently. Those that actually think that of us do not know us very well. I will comment on some facts for those who have made such comments. 
1. The Franklin Schools have always accepted memorials and donations of “in memory of” and “gifted by” without extensive advertising. 
2. This policy or acceptance has been in place for 30+ years. 
3. The Memorial Policy in place today was placed in front of the School Committee in January of 2014 and then again for a second read in February of 2014 for a vote. 
4. We started a process to put a memorial at the High School in memory of Kristin in March of 2012. 
5. Why was the policy to not accept memorials at our schools put in place? We built a new school and the question came about as to what to do with the memorials in the old school. Simple. Right? 
6. At no point did anyone advise us that a new policy was being considered during our donation process. 
7. When we told in June of 2014 that the School does not accept gifts in memory of or with a name plaque on a gift, we researched when this happened. 
8. We have done research on the surrounding schools. The new policy up for vote on February 24th (which has been the policy of the School for years) is in line with most if not all schools surrounding our community including many of the schools built under the same circumstances as our new school. 
9. We would like to ask each and every person in the community to take the Panther Donation out of the equation. Let’s imagine our new high school is in need of a new football stadium. The field needs to be replaced, the fencing, the track, the score board, the announcement booth, everything. Some wealthy, powerful, resourceful family (which is not us) would like to put a new football field in place. Let’s just say, they are asking to put their name on the score board as “gifted by” or “in memory” of their son who may have been an average student and a football player who passed away. Here is the big question you need to ask yourself. WHY WOULD A PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM PUT A POLICY IN PLACE THAT WOULD NOT ALLOW THE COMMUNITY AND SCHOOL TO ACCEPT THIS GENEROUS GIFT WITH OUT RECOGNITION???? We are a public school. We should not accept this gift because of a name plate on the gift and pass this expense to the taxpayers of Franklin? Does this make any sense to anyone in this community? 
10. Taking away public donated enhancements to our town, schools and community from a person who is alive or passed away is just WRONG!!!!! This has nothing to do with our children’s education. A gift that enhances our school or town does not hurt one student or person in this community. 
11. Let’s go back to the people who have commented that a family with the means, power, resources and entitlement. We have worked hard, saved for both our children’s education so they would not be burdened with huge student loans. Both our children went to public schools and state colleges. Let’s get a few things out in the open. Have any of you had to pay tens of thousands of dollars for medical bills to save your child’s life? Have you had to take those funds out of your child’s education fund to pay for those bills? Have you had to take those funds out of their education funds to pay for their funeral? Our grief and financial standing is none of your business. We attempted to do a nice thing in memory of our daughter and some people have made this disgusting. 
12. If life were to be equal, we would have our daughter, Patrick would not have passed away from a brain tumor, Leanne Schmall would not have died of Melanoma, Vanessa Cusson would still be with us, there would not be a playground in Kerry Driscoll’s memory and the list could go on forever. Children should receive the opportunity for equal education. Let children learn life and stop trying to protect them. The mission of the School Committee is to give each child an equal education. Children learn life as they live it, good and bad.
The second reading is on the agenda for the School Committee meeting this evening. The meeting is held at the Franklin Municipal Building, 355 East Central St (opposite Big Y). The meeting is held in the Council Chambers on the 2nd floor.

proposed memorial statue for Kristin Graci and the Class of 2007
proposed memorial statue for Kristin Graci and the Class of 2007

"Franklin should be confident that it is battle-tested and ready"

From Hockomock Sports we find and share the playoff preview for the FHS girls basketball team:

Franklin (16-4) - No. 2 seed in Div. 1 Central, host winner of No. 7 Westford/No. 10 Algonquin 
The Panthers tied for second in the Kelley-Rex this season and then took second in the end of season Westboro Tournament, without point guard Julianne Pisani in the final. Franklin looks poised to make a deep run in the tournament with an experienced lineup, but while plenty is known about the Panthers there is also plenty of mystery about many of their opponents from the Central. 
Lexi Martin was missing for last season’s tournament games and Franklin will be looking to the Merrimack-commit to be the star player in her final postseason. She has the talent to take over games and could be the biggest factor in how far the Panthers go. Martin will have plenty of help from classmate Jillian Spolidoro, who has become a dangerous and consistent threat from the outside and been one of Franklin’s leading scorers this season.  
Sarah Deyo (32) of Attleboro and Jillian Spolidoro (20) of Franklin will be two key players for Hockomock teams as the playoffs get underway this week. (Josh Perry/
Sarah Deyo (32) of Attleboro and Jillian Spolidoro (20) of Franklin will be two key players for Hockomock teams as the playoffs get underway this week. (Josh Perry/
The Pisani twins, Julianne and Tracy, are tenacious defenders and Julianne was the team’s primary scorer in Martin’s absence last year and could once again be a key factor on the offensive end. Junior Aubrie Kutil should also be a factor in giving the Panthers size on the post on both ends of the floor. 
Franklin coach John Leighton uses a deep rotation but expect that it will be a little smaller in the tournament and the top players will be counted on to get the Panthers over the hump and win a sectional title. 
It won’t be easy with talented teams like Westford Academy, Holy Name, and Lincoln-Sudbury on their side of the bracket and with top seed Wachusett looming for a potential final, but Franklin should be confident that it is battle-tested and ready for the tournament. A run to the sectional final would be the expectation for this team.
For the other Hockomock League playoff previews, visit here

Franklin Library: Geneology Club - Feb 26

The Franklin Geneology Club will meet at the Library on Thursday at 6:30 PM. William McDougall of the Franklin Family History Center will be giving a presentation on

Geneology Club meeting Thursday, Feb 26th
Geneology Club meeting Thursday, Feb 26th

More about the Franklin Family History Center can be found here