Saturday, May 28, 2011

Community Gardens - Ribbon Cutting - 5/28/11

Did the ribbon get cut for the Community Gardens today?

Yes, it did. Here is the video recorded live during the event:

I'll have more pictures and stories later.

Franklin, MA

In the News - house fire, fallen heroes, parade

House fire deemed accidental

Franklin honors fallen heroes

FRANKLIN - The Memorial Day Parade will begin at 10:45 a.m. on Monday in downtown Franklin. 
Marchers will line-up at the Historical Museum, 80 West Central St. The parade will travel on Main, School, Union, West Central and Beaver streets, ending at the war memorial on the Town Common. 
Marchers will stop at Dean College, Union Street Cemetery, St. Mary's Cemetery and the war memorial. 
Any veteran who wishes to march should meet at the Historical Museum at 10:15 a.m. Vehicles will be available for veterans who do not want to walk the route.
The parade is sponsored by the Franklin Rotary.

Read more:

Franklin, MA

Friday, May 27, 2011

Take some time

In February, snow still covered much of the ground. It had arrived in December and covered many lawns until late in March.

April showers came and went, May flowers have bloomed, the trees and lawns are green again.

ribbon road

Memorial Day weekend is upon us. The traditional start to summer time.

Take some time to be thankful for all that you do have. Take some time to remember and honor those in the military who made this possible for us.

Franklin, MA

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Franklin Community Garden Grand Opening this Saturday AM

The Franklin Community Garden Committee is proud to announce that the Grand Opening Day of Franklin's first community garden will take place this Saturday, May 28th at King Street Memorial Park located off King Street in Franklin. A ribbon-cutting will be held at 9:00 a.m. 
A fundraiser plant sale is planned as well featuring locally grown vegetable starts.

Plots were assigned through a lottery drawing and winners have been notified. A wait list has been established as well.

Gardeners who have paid the lease fee may begin working in their plots on Opening Day. 
Lease payments are due by June 7th and will be collected by Franklin Recreation. Gardening can not begin until the $40 fee has been paid.  Payments can be made at the Recreation Department at 150 Emmons Street (Old Town Hall). The hours are Mon, Tues, and Thurs 8:30-4:30; Wed 8:30-6:30pm, and Fridays 8:30-1:30 pm. 

The garden features 46 large raised beds leased to gardeners. The Franklin Food Pantry will garden 4 of those beds; other beds have been assigned to individuals, families, and community groups.  Several of the beds are designed for easy access.

Many of the gardeners will be participating the Franklin's Plant A Row to Share program.

For more information, please visit

"services using other people's money"

Town Council Chairman Scott Mason said after the meeting he had received about 20 emails from residents and library advocates questioning a budget that would cut 5.5 positions and require the town to seek a waiver from the state for the library to remain certified. 
"When it comes to what gets cut, given that we have to make cuts, I am going to support cutting the library over police, fire and DPW every day of the week," Mason said. 
He said that is a reflection of dangerously low staffing in those departments and not the library.

Read more:

Franklin, MA

In the News - sports clinic, 4th July

Registration open for sport clinics in Franklin


Franklin plans contests for 4th of July weekend

Franklin, MA

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bring Back the 4th™

Greetings, Franklin residents!
From May 4th through June 14th, 2011, Liberty Mutual Insurance is hosting Bring Back the 4th™, an online contest that Franklin community members can enter for a chance to win one of ten $10,000 grants to support our town’s official Fourth of July celebration! 
All our community members need to do is visit between May 4th and June 14th and take a brief multiple choice quiz on “Responsible Moments in U.S. History.” Each completed quiz counts as one credit towards a city or town’s total score.

Towns with the highest quiz participation will be eligible to win one of 10 Bring Back the 4th™ grants, distributed via three population-based categories: small (4 grants), medium (3 grants) and large (3 grants).

Please note the contest allows for one quiz per person, and winners will be announced the week of June 20th. Official contest rules can be found on the Bring Back the 4th™ website.

So visit today, to take the quiz and find helpful tools for spreading the word in our community!
Thomas Duval
Executive Sales Representative
Liberty Mutual

Franklin, MA

Hockomock Area YMCA Accepting Applications for Volunteer and Job Readiness Program for Teens

Teen Corps Program builds career skills in a difficult market while rewarding its teens with the satisfaction that comes from volunteering

For teens ages 15 to 19 looking to build solid workplace skills, while helping others, the Franklin YMCA invites them to join the Teen Corps as it prepares for its 3rd summer. Accepted applicants will be given responsibilities in areas from summer camp or member services, to fitness, integration or childwatch. Mentoring and training classes will be offered in the areas of active listening, dressing for success, resume building, professionalism and interviewing skills, among others.

“When young can set themselves apart when they enter the workforce by learning how to conduct themselves with managers and co-workers and develop basic workplace competencies,” says Bartt Pinchuck, Franklin branch director. “Teen Corps provides participants with the opportunity to gain job experience as well as develop professional skills and good working habits.”
Because of the potential difficulty teens find searching for summer positions, the YMCA saw the opportunity to help community teens hone their skills for the job market while doing good for an organization that welcomes strong volunteers. Through the free program, participants gain volunteer experience in a real job setting and participate in work skills and job readiness trainings. 
The program also appeals to parents who encourage their kids to learn through volunteerism and hands-on experience. 
According to, more than one in four teens nationwide does some type of volunteer work, such as bringing hope to sick children, beauty to their own neighborhoods, and safety to the homes of seniors. 
But the giving gives back. Research confirms that teens who learn early to be social, caring, and responsible perform better in school. Volunteering improves their chances of graduating at the top of their class, armed with critical leadership skills.
“Parents can encourage their teens to volunteer at the YMCA knowing that the YMCA is about developing strong youth, instilling values as well as building solid skills,” says Dawn DaCosta, Teen & Community Director. “The teens who currently volunteer for us are very focused, dedicated to the Y and enjoy what they do.”
Employment among the nation’s teens 16-19 years old has declined considerably over the past seven years they have fared far worse than any other age group. Teen Corps is designed to address this challenge by enhancing the capacity of teens to participate in the labor market. 
Since the YMCA offers classes and programs based around families and children in a safe environment, participants are also required to train for other life skills such as child abuse prevention, CPR and first aid training as well as program specific training.

Participants must pass a CORI and SORI check, provide three positive references, interview with the Teen Corps coordinator, commit to an eight-week program including eight hours of volunteer service per week, and commit to all training.

Last year, participants enjoyed trainings in CPR, First Aid, Child Abuse Prevention, Customer Service 101, Landing the Job, Professionalism, and Working with Children. Each participant also underwent a mock interview with a senior staff member.
For more information, call Bartt Pinchuck at 774-235-2756 or email 
Applications will be accepted until June 10th


About the Y

The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,687 Ys engage 21 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change.

Franklin, MA

"approved changes to fees"

"The fears are that students are out in cars and really engaging in risky behaviors," Sabolinski said, noting alcohol can cause increased drug use and violence. 
Kristin Cerce, the district's director of health and physical education, said administrators hope to offer more programs on Friday nights next year in an effort to curb drinking. They also hold a mock crash before prom and are planning to bring a distracted driving simulator to the high school next fall. 
School Committee member Roberta Trahan, who works as a critical care nurse, said she is especially concerned about tobacco and alcohol statistics because teenagers who use those substances can become addicted later in life. 
"I'm at a loss to try to comprehend (the data)," Trahan said after the meeting. "Students just don't seem to understand the implications of these behaviors."

Read more:

Franklin, MA

In the News - Smith College bound, identity theft

Franklin senior will go to Smith to study, play softball


Franklin man pleads not guilty to identity theft

Franklin, MA

Monday, May 23, 2011

Honor flight

Jerry Sherlock is one of the lucky ones. His sons took him to the World War II Memorial in Washington, DC in 2007. Others still need to go.

Jerry, his sons and one grandson in front of the Iwo Jima Monument can be viewed here

You can find out more about this cause here

Franklin, MA

"It's not a single thing we do"

In kindergarten through fourth grade, charter school teachers focus explicitly on character by teaching students how to behave at school, interact with each other and give back to their community. In fifth through eighth grade, those skills are reinforced while teaching academics through the bridge activity, rap writing and other projects, O'Malley said. 
Character education culminates during a capstone project students complete as seventh- and eighth-graders. The project involves researching, planning and implementing a service project such as tending gardens for the Franklin Food Pantry, administrators said. 
"We try to focus on the whole student," O'Malley said, noting all students participate in weekly small group sessions that address character issues. "Parents, teachers and students buy into the idea that character education is at the heart of what we do." 
Several students who participated in interviews before the committee said they didn't realize how well character is integrated into their studies until they were asked about it. 
"There's a sense of community here," said Cobi Frongillo, 13, an eighth-grader. "I can name about 95 percent of the students here. I don't think that would happen in another school."

Read more:

Franklin, MA

"If you don't preserve the stories, then history is lost"

It was 1945 and Crawford, an 87-year-old Franklin Army veteran, was fighting in the Ruhy Valley in western Germany. His sergeant sent him to an old lumberyard up on a hill to see if there was any salvageable lumber. Instead, he found two German soldiers. 
"I pointed my gun at them and they stood with their guns pointed at me," Crawford recalled Tuesday. "It felt like 30 minutes but it was probably only a minute." 
The Germans, demoralized from losing the war, gave up. On the way back to his unit, Crawford realized his gun was unloaded when he attempted to shoot a rabbit for its meat and nothing came out of the gun. 
While many stories like this are forgotten when veterans die, Crawford's tales of serving in the U.S. Army's 548th Field Artillery will be saved for future generations thanks to Regis Schratz, a Franklin teenager who interviewed Crawford and is making a video of his stories to be preserved in the Library of Congress.

Read more:

Related post about bringing WWII veterans to the WWII Memorial in WDC 

Franklin, MA

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Photo slideshow - Book Sale/'Touch a Truck' Day

The combined Library Book Sale and DPW 'Touch a Truck Day' drew a good crowd according to DPW Director Robert 'Brutus" Cantoreggi. This is the 4th 'touch a truck day' and third when combined with the Library Book Sale.

Did the kids find the buttons for the horn? Yes, they did!

Franklin, MA

Strawberry Stroll - June 16, 2011

FDP Strawberry Stroll 2011

Franklin, MA

Franklin, MA: School Committee - Agenda - 5/24/11

Vision Statement
The Franklin Public Schools will foster within its students the knowledge and skills to find and achieve satisfaction in life as productive global citizens.

Mission Statement
The Franklin Public Schools, in collaboration with the community, will cultivate each student's intellectual, social, emotional and physical potential through rigorous academic inquiry and informed problem solving skills within a safe, nurturing and respectful environment.

"The listing of matters are those reasonably anticipated by the Chair which may be discussed at the meeting. Not all items listed may in fact be discussed and other items not listed may also be brought up for discussion to the extent permitted by law."

1. Routine Business
Citizen’s Comments
Review of Agenda
Minutes: I recommend approval of the minutes from the May 10, 2011 School Committee Meeting.
Payment of Bills Mr. Glynn
Payroll Mrs. Douglas
FHS Student Representatives
Correspondence: none

2. Guests/Presentations
a. FHS Green Update – Liz Hart
b. Ratification of Van Driver’s Contract
c. New Administrators

  • Joyce Edwards – Director of Instructional Services
  • Kadie Wilson – Principal Davis Thayer

d. Update Preliminary Data – MetroWest Adolescent Health Survey 2010

3. Discussion Only Items
Policy – Second Reading
KF – Community Use of School Facilities

4. Action Items
a. I recommend approval of the Budget Transfers as detailed.
b. I recommend adoption of Policy KF – Community Use of School Facilities as discussed.
c. I recommend acceptance of 3 checks, totaling $2,400.00 from the Annie Sullivan MS PCC for field trips.
d. I recommend acceptance of a check for $150.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
e. I recommend acceptance of a check for $125.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
f. I recommend acceptance of a check for $125.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
g. I recommend acceptance of a check for $700.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
h. I recommend acceptance of a check for $400.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
i. I recommend acceptance of a check for $125.00 from the JF Kennedy PCC for field trips.
j. I recommend approval of the ratification of the Van Drivers 2008-2010 and the 2010-2013 Contracts.

5. Information Matters
Superintendent’s Report
School Committee Sub-Committee Reports

School Committee Liaison Reports

6. New Business
To discuss future business that may be brought before the School Committee.

7. Executive Session
Contractual Negotiations

8. Adjourn

Franklin, MA

The weird, wonderful world of bioluminescence

I love the line "Please remember to turn the lights off".

More TED Talks can be found at

Franklin, MA

In the News - high school, beautiful downtown

Franklin looking for building authority advice on high school options

Franklin volunteers turn out to make town beautiful

Franklin, MA