Saturday, September 21, 2013

A walk through the Sculpture Park

Last Sunday, I took a walk through the developing sculpture park to see the new paving that has been recently put into place.

paving smooths the approach to the bridge


head wall where bath house use to be at pool

long walk along the inside

into the corner, trees added too

the turn around point in the far corner

approaching the stream entrance

smooth approach over the dam

final walk to complete the route back to the bridge

Prior visits to the Sculpture Park recorded these photos and video

Roy, Spilka, Warren tour Franklin's EMC plant

From Senator Spilka's office:
State Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland), State Representative Jeff Roy (D-Franklin) and U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren toured the EMC Corporation manufacturing plant in Franklin this afternoon. The legislators met with executives to discuss EMC’s latest innovations in data storage and security, followed by a tour of the plant. Senator Warren then addressed employees in a town hall style discussion. 
“EMC showcases the leadership, innovation and success of Massachusetts manufacturing and technology,” said Senator Spilka. “I am thrilled that we were able to tour the plant with Senator Warren today. This visit really underscores the importance of continued public support for research and development, manufacturing and workforce development initiatives – here in the Commonwealth and nationally.” 
EMC Tour
Joe Tucci, Chairman and CEO of EMC Corporation, State Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland), U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren, and State Representative Jeffrey Roy (D-Franklin) at EMC’s manufacturing plant in Franklin, MA

The legislators had the opportunity to view EMC Corporation’s data storage products in various stages of the manufacturing and quality-testing process and to discuss the company’s workforce development, education and community involvement priorities. 
“EMC consistently shows a strong commitment to workforce training and educational partnerships. These manufacturing and technology jobs are the kinds of jobs that we, as legislators, should be creating and supporting. I am so pleased we were able to have this meeting and see some important examples of innovative Massachusetts manufacturing firsthand,” Spilka said.

Reminder: 13th Annual High School Fair - Oct 3rd

The Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School, located in the St. Mary’s school building at 201 Main Street, will host its 13th annual High School Fair night on Thursday, October 3rd, from 7-8:30 PM in the BFCCPS Dr. Kevin O’Malley auditorium.

Open to the public, 8th grade students both from BFCCPS and from other surrounding towns are invited to attend; admittance only with parent or guardian. The fair showcases private and independent high schools in the Metrowest area, Boston, Worcester, and northern Rhode Island. Students are invited to browse, pick up brochures and applications, ask about fall open house dates and speak directly with representatives and current students of the schools in attendance.

Parking is available in the school parking lot off Pleasant Street, just north of Main Street in Franklin.

More about Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School can be found on their webpage

In the News: EMC tour, marathon route

Warren praises innovation on tour of EMC in Franklin

In her first visit to the Milford area since her campaign, US Sen. Elizabeth Warren, got a firsthand look at the state’s innovation economy at work, touring the EMC Corp. facility here.

Daffodils to be planted along Marathon route

Local businesses and homeowners along the Boston Marathon route, and area residents, are invited to take part in "Marathon Daffodils,'' a project designed to help preserve the "Boston Strong'' theme next spring.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Franklin's election lineup set

The campaigns will commence now that the candidates for the various positions for election this November 5th have been confirmed. Franklin's Town Clerk released the following listing of candidates whose paperwork had been certified so they would be on the ballot. This is a listing of the candidates in no particular order. The order on the ballot will be determined later.

Franklin, MA: Municipal Building
Franklin's Municipal Building - 355 West Central St

  • There are ten candidates for nine Town Council positions (Updated: miscounted to say 11; at one time there was 11 but only 10 returned papers to be validated)

Brett S. Feldman
Glenn F. Jones
Thomas D. Mercer
Andrew M. Bissanti
Judith Pond Pfeffer
Matthew T. Kelly
Stephen T. Williams
Peter E. Padula
Robert R. Vallee
Charles F. Delfino, Jr.

  • There are seven candidates for the seven School Committee positions

John S. Jewell PhD
Cynthia J.Douglas
Roberta D. Trahan
Paula T. Mullen
Susan T. Rohrbach
Kevin P. O'Malley
Trevor A. Clement

  • There are two candidates for the one Board of Assessors position for a four year term

Christopher K. Feeley
Daniel B. Ballinger
  • There is one candidate for the one Board of Assessors position for a two year term

John H. Neas

  • There is one candidate for the one Board of Health position for a four year term

Bruce J. Hunchard
  • There are two candidates for the one Constable position for a two year term

Rancourt  LaRosa
Daniel S. McCahill

  • There are four three candidates for the two Planning Board positions for a four year term

Joseph F. Halligan
Anthony D. Padula
Navdeep S. Arora

The last day to register to vote on November 5th is Weds Oct 16th.

The complete timeline for this election can be found here

"a change of pace from the more timeworn fundraisers"

The 3rd Annual Fight Hunger Paintball Challenge will be held on Saturday. Town Councilor Glenn Jones has organized the event and additional details are available in this posting by the Milford Daily News.
From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Fox 4, 159 Milford St., will donate $5 from every admission fee to the Franklin Food Pantry. Paintballers that day are also encouraged to bring non-perishable items and dry goods, along with their rifles and extra layers of clothing. 
"It’s a unique opportunity to raise awareness and necessary funds for the pantry," said organizer Glenn Jones, who started paintballing at 17. 
Jones acknowledged that a place where people run and barrel roll through the woods, while avoiding being hit by tiny paint-filled orbs, is an unusual venue for a benefit event.

Read more:

For more information about the Food Pantry you can visit and donate securely online at

MassBudget: New census data for Massachusetts - income up slightly, poverty unchanged

MassBudget  Information.
 Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center  Democracy.

New Data for Massachusetts:
Median Income Up Slightly, Poverty Unchanged 
The Massachusetts median income grew slightly between 2011 and 2012, while nationwide median income was basically unchanged, according to new data released today by the Census Bureau. Even with the slight increase in Massachusetts, however, our median income remains 5.4 percent below its pre-recession level.

Our factsheet, New Census Data on Income, Poverty, Health, and Child Well-Being, summarizes the latest information across each of these areas:

  • Poverty: There was no improvement in the statewide poverty level, which has increased substantially since 2007.

  • Child Poverty: More than 1 in 7 children currently live below the poverty line.

  • Health Coverage: Massachusetts continues to have the highest rate of health insurance coverage--for children and for the population as a whole

The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget) produces policy research, analysis, and data-driven recommendations focused on improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults, strengthening our state's economy, and enhancing the quality of life in Massachusetts.

BOSTON, MA 02108
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Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center | 15 Court Square | Suite 700 | Boston | MA | 02108

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Good News from Franklin Federated Church

Hi Steve -

I thought you might be interested in including a piece in Franklin Matters about the new bench in front of Franklin Federated Church. There is an interesting story behind it.
Franklin Federated Church - Sidney Maxwell bench
Franklin Federated Church - Sidney Maxwell bench

Early in the year, the church lost a beloved member Sidney Maxwell.  Sidney was very wll known in the church for his calling to care for the environment, and after his death, The Rev. Charley Eastman challenged each member of the congregation to find "one substantive way to give health to the Earth in Sidney's honor."

A member of the church, Deb Colella, took him up on that and decided to sign the church up for the Trex Plastic Bag Recycling Challenge.The goal was for the church to collect more than 30,000 plastic bags for recycling in a six-month period from Feb. 15 to Aug. 15. This included grocery bags, dry cleaning bags, newspaper sleeves, packaging film,, etc. The idea was not to encourage church members to use plastic, but rather to show how much of it comes through our lives and how important it is to recycle it. 
Church members and friends brought the bags to worship each week, and delivered them to Colella, who with the help of family and friends counted and then recycle them all. The Sunday School children got involved counting them (and sometimes popping bubble wrap, much to their delight).The church beat its goal by one month, collecting over 30,000 bags by mid-July. 
Trex awarded the church the composite bench (made partially from recycled plastic) which was recently installed on the lawn in front of the church. 
I'm attaching a photo of the bench, although you may want to take a better one yourself when you are out and about.

Tiffany Vail Miller
Communication Coordinator
Franklin Federated Church

In the News: Joey Kramer, RMV Milford, mountain lion

Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer stops in Franklin

Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer stopped at the Big Y Wednesday in Franklin to promote his organic coffee bean company called Rockin' & Roastin'.

Legislators ask RMV head to save Milford branch

In an effort to keep open the Milford branch, state Sen. Richard Moore and state Rep. John Fernandes met with the head of the Registry of Motor Vehicles last week to raise their concerns about the potential closure.

Caller reports seeing a mountain lion on I-495

A woman reported seeing a mountain lion on the median of I-495 in Milford just north of Exit 20 today a little after 1 p.m.

Franklin - Open Committee/Board Positions

The following Boards/Committees are looking for members:

Conservation Commission - Kathy Celorier - 508-520-4929

Franklin Cultural Council - Claire Griffin - 508-520-8857

Library Board of Directors - Felicia Oti - 508-520-4940

Franklin Housing Trust Fund - Maxine Kinhart - 508-553-4886

Public Land Use Committee - Beth Dahlstrom - 508-553-4852

If you are interested in serving on the committee, please complete the attached form and return to the Town Administrator's Office.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Annual "Fight Hunger" Paintball Challenge 2013

Where: FOX 4 Paintball Field - 159 Milford Street, Upton, MA 01568
Email: Dave Painter (
Phone: 508-529-FOX4 (3694)

When: Saturday, September, 21st 2013
Time: 9:00am to 4:00pm



A raffle for a Paintball rifle

A portion of the admission price will be donated to the Franklin Food Pantry.

We will be taking contributions of Non-Perishable items and Dry Goods the day of the event.

Donations can also be made directly to the drop off box at:
Franklin Food Pantry
43 West Central Street
P.O. Box 116
Franklin, MA 02038-0116
Telephone: 508-528-3115

new phone book coming

Judith Needell, publisher/owner of The Shopper News, writes:
We are creating a new Franklin Telephone Directory and Resource Guide that will be published in Spring 2014 and mailed out to all town homes and businesses. As an extra incentive to our clients to help give back to their community and as a great benefit to your organization we are also donating 5% of all net ad sales to the Franklin Food Pantry. Seems timely as I've just read your article on the Franklin Matters website that the Food Pantry could use more assistance. For your reference I have attached a PDF with an overview of our new project that we will be sending out to potential advertisers.

Judith Needell, publisher/owner
The Shopper News
"The Shopper with a heart"

19 Dean Avenue
Franklin,ma 02038

Partnership Fall Luncheon - Friday, Sep 20

Partnership Fall Networking Luncheon
Friday, September 20th  at 1:00
Dean College Campus Center Dining Hall
$6.50 for a great lunch and good company!
Come meet new members!
Bring your business cards!
Please RSVP Joel Carrara at

MassBudget: New Census Data: Incomes Still Below Pre-Recession Level, Poverty Still Above

MassBudget  Information.
 Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center  Democracy.

Incomes Still Below Pre-Recession Level,
Poverty Still Above
New information released by the Census Bureau today shows that in the U.S., median household income has fallen 8.3 percent since 2007, the year before the recession began. There was essentially no change in median incomes between 2011 and 2012, meaning that while incomes have not started to rebound, they did not decline further.

Also included in the Census data was information about poverty and health insurance coverage in the U.S.

  • Between 2011 and 2012, the percentage of people lacking health insurance fell slightly to 15.4%. That still leaves 48 million uninsured.

  • Across the country, more than 1 in every 5 children lives below the poverty line.

  • 46.5 million people live in poverty. That's a poverty rate of 15.0 percent, which is effectively unchanged from last year but still significantly higher than the pre-recession rate of 12.5 percent.

The data in today's release provide a useful overview of poverty, income, and health coverage on the national level. Thursday (9/19) the Census Bureau will release more reliable state-level data as part of the American Community Survey. At that time, MassBudget will provide fuller analysis of the Massachusetts data for income, poverty, child poverty, health insurance, and health insurance coverage for children.

The full Census Bureau report is available on their website. Complete analysis of the national trends can be found at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
The Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center (MassBudget) produces policy research, analysis, and data-driven recommendations focused on improving the lives of low- and middle-income children and adults, strengthening our state's economy, and enhancing the quality of life in Massachusetts.


BOSTON, MA 02108
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Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center | 15 Court Square | Suite 700 | Boston | MA | 02108

"we are finally out of the starting blocks"

One of the key areas for cost savings is regionalization of services and the regional emergency dispatch center has been a long time coming.
Franklin, Norfolk, Plainville and Wrentham leaders will meet next month to establish a governing board for the Metacomet Emergency Communications Center, also known as the towns’ regional dispatch operation. 
The four communities will share ownership of the center, housed in the Wrentham Public Safety Building. They have already penned an inter-municipal agreement. 
Named after King Phillip, war chief of the Wampanoag Native American tribe, the center will occupy its own district and have its own employees thanks to recently passed legislation.

Read the full article in the Milford Daily News:

The Long Range Financial Planning Committee included this item among their recommendations

"tested positive for the West Nile Virus"

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has isolated mosquitoes in central Franklin that have tested positive for the West Nile Virus. 
To date, there has been one human case of West Nile Virus and one case of Eastern Equine Encephalitis in Norfolk County.

All individuals are strongly advised to take personal precautions to avoid mosquito bites until the first hard frost of the season. 
Apply Insect Repellent When Outdoors: Use a repellent with DEET, Permethrin, picardin or oil of lemon eucalyptus according to the instructions on the product labels. Remember not to use products with DEET on infants under two months of age. DEET products in concentrations above 30% should not be used on older children. Oil of eucalyptus should not be used on children under three years of age. 
Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours: Mosquitos are most active between the hours from dusk to dawn. Limit your exposure out of doors during this peak biting time if possible. If you must be outside, wearing long-sleeves, long pants and socks will help keep mosquitos away from your skin. 
Drain Standing Water on Your Property: Mosquitos lay their eggs in standing or stagnant water. Drain birdbaths, flower pots, buckets and children’s wading pools frequently. 
Additional public health advisories/alerts regarding WNV and EEE will be provided by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Franklin Health Department as the situation warrants. 
More information on mosquito-borne viruses can be found at the MADPH Arbovirus Surveillance Information web page at

This notice was posted on the Franklin webpage

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Friends of Franklin Library: The Fall Book Sale

Hi Steve, 
I am in the (current) president of the Friends of Franklin Library, and was the recipient of the letter you posted regarding the fall book sale.  (The letter on the library's web site is different.) 
Obviously, the Friends were not happy with the Board of Directors' decision, but I have been working with the Library Director and a member of the Library Board (with the assistance of Jeff Nutting) to reverse that and hold the October sale as planned.  I hope to have a spot on the Library Board's agenda next Monday to talk about the fall book sale, and to ask them to reconsider their decision and hold another vote. 
The Friends are hopeful that the Library Board will reverse their earlier decision - the fall book sale is a profitable tradition enjoyed by many - but pending our appeal, had decided to delay notifying members and the public of the situation until our appeal was heard.  I guess that now falls under the heading of "good intentions." 
Feel free to post this message and assure the community that the FoFL is working hard to (and is prepared to) run the October book sale as planned. I will follow up with an update after we meet with the Library Board of Directors at their next meeting on September 23 at 7PM; it is a public meeting, so anyone interested may attend. 
In the meantime, donations of books are always appreciated. 
Thanks and regards, 
Maria Lucier
President, Friends of Franklin Library

This was in response to the letter received by the Friends of Franklin Library and posted on Monday

Franklin Library: 2013 Annual Report

The Franklin Public Library entry for the 2013 Annual Report has already been posted to the Library webpage.

You may recall that the Annual Report is produced each year and generally available for the election in November. As a cost reduction, fewer paper versions have been printed and more 'soft copies' via the web have been made available. The Annual Report for 2013 covers all business during the fiscal year for 2013 which began on July 1, 2012 and ended on June 30, 2013.

Rather than waiting for the release of the full Annual Report, you can read the section on the Library here:

This was posted to the Franklin Library webpage

Anne Rachin author of "All That's Familiar"

Anne Rachin writes:
All That’s Familiar:How to Remain in Your Home and Age in Place is a resource book for anyone intending to age with dignity and independence in the familiar comfort of their home. Drawn from my thirty years of experience as owner/director of Ideal Home Care Service, I have written an easy to read, practical guide complete with examples and descriptions of care, frequently asked questions, as well as a check list for putting together a home care plan.

Anne will be at the Franklin Public Library on Weds, Sep 18th to talk about her work at 7:00 PM

Anne Rachin - author of All That's Familiar

This was re-posted from the Franklin Library webpage

For additional info on Anne and her book, you can visit the book webpage

"supported buying the station for a 'minimal price'"

The Milford Daily News digs into the closing comments and the change in scope for the Citizens Committee reporting on the exploration of buying the downtown train station from the MBTA.
Town Administrator Jeffrey Nutting last week asked to meet with the Citizens Committee to discuss the idea. Nutting praised the committee’s work in pushing the MBTA to complete the recent improvements and said the station looks "100 percent better." 
At this point, though, he does not know how the town might benefit from buying the station. 
"There’s a lot of homework that we need to do on what would be the upside for the town," he said. "My position is the T needs to maintain the station; they’ve done a great job to date." 
And, he said, pursuing the purchase could cause problems for the town. 
"There’s liability issues," he said. "And one of the issues if we own it is we have to lease it. There are (Americans with Disabilities Act) issues. You’d have to sit down and go through all of these."

Read more:

Monday, September 16, 2013

Friends of Franklin Library book sale - Oct 2103 cancelled

Hello, Steve,
As you may recall, a few years ago, the Library Board tried to cancel the Friends' book sale at the DPW. Thank you for your coverage, as I feel it was instrumental in continuing the sales. It's happening again - the Library Board has cancelled the Oct 2013 sale.  The Friends' were notified abruptly via the following letter:
As you know, the Town of Franklin has recently drafted a Master Plan for the entire town. In conjunction with the Master Plan, the Franklin Library Board of Directors is in the process of developing its own strategic plan, which will reflect the Town's plan. During this process, we must consider all sources of revenue, including fundraising. Our Library Director has conducted community surveys and focus group interviews since January 2013, beginning with the Friends of the Franklin Library. The Board wanted as much information about community needs and desires as possible before developing the strategic plan. 
Some of the initial improvements included: changing the regularly-scheduled morning programs; beginning new afternoon programs for school-age, children, tweens, and teens; updating the children's audio-visual collection; sprucing up the children's room; and instituting an "ongoing "book sale on the second floor of the library.  We are also working with an architect to review both the building needs and space requirements for the next generation of patrons. 
The popularity of the "ongoing" book sale has led us to expand it to the first floor near the circulation desk. Accordingly, we do not believe we need a fall 2013 book sale at the DPW. We will continue to monitor this new approach at the Library prior to making a decision about the 2014 spring book sale. 
We recognize the community nature of the book sales as well as the tremendous effort by the Friends and volunteers to support and to staff the book sale. We hope that the "ongoing" book sale will free your members to consider other events and ideas for fundraising in support of the Library. 
The Franklin Library board deeply appreciates all the past and present efforts of the Friends to support the patrons of the Library We welcome your suggestions and ideas and look forward to an ongoing dialogue with the Friends on our continued efforts to provide the citizens of Franklin the best possible Library in the region.
Please feel free to contact me with ideas and proposals. 
Warmest regards, 
Cynthia S. DobrzynskiChairpersonFranklin Library Board of Directors

Similar text was in the "Library Update" and posted to the Library webpage

Wonderful wine with friends

Pour Richard's Wine and Spirits was the gracious host for the Franklin Food Pantry Wine Tasting event on Thursday evening.

Food Pantry Development Director Erin Lynch and Treasurer Jim Roche were among the welcoming committee for the more than 80 guests.
Development Director Erin Lynch and Food Pantry Treasurer Jim Roche

Whole Foods Bellingham provided some delicious fruit, cheese and crackers for snacking between tastes.

Whole Foods Bellingham

Painted Lady Flowers donated this colorful bouquet for the raffle. It was paired with a bottle of wine from Pour Richard's.

Painted Lady Flowers
Of course, there was a crowd gathered around to taste the samples

wine tasting choices offered by John Gedgaudas of Trio Wine

There was a selection of white and red wines to sample from. A portion of the purchases during the evening will go to the Food Pantry.

selection of reds and whites for the tasting

While wine was featured for tasting on this night, Pour Richard's has other tasting events. "Don't drink ordinary" is a worthy motto for this business!

the wine racks to showcase the  selections
For additional info on Pour Richard's visit their website
and visit their location at  14 Grove St, Franklin, MA

The Franklin Food Pantry thanks you for coming out to enjoy a drink, conversation and help a good cause!

"eleven residents had pulled papers to vie for the nine two-year seats"

One of several milestones for the Franklin local election on November 5th is reached today. Today is the last day to take out papers to get on the ballot. The papers need to be returned by this Wednesday, Sep 18th.

Prospective candidates for the Nov. 5 election have until 4 p.m. today to pick up nomination papers, with Wednesday being the last day to return them signed. 
The packed ballot includes all of the seats on the School Committee and Town Council, as well as two referendums, one of which is nonbinding. 
Residents will vote on whether to make the treasure/collector position appointed through an amendment to the town’s charter. And the non-biding question asks whether they would support the town adopting a mayoral form of government.

Read the full article in MDN:

The full election timeline can be found here

The Franklin Matters offer to candidates

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Autumn Rail Trail Walk/Nature Hike - Sep 28

The Franklin and Bellingham Rail Trail Committee (FBRTC) and the Metacomet Land Trust (MLT) and happy to announce an Autumn Nature Hike on the Southern New England Trunkline Trail.

Please join us Saturday, Sept 28, 2013 at 10:00 am for this family-friendly event.  Enjoy all the sights, scents and sounds the seasonal changes have to offer on this Saturday morning hike. Kid-friendly guided activities will be provided along approximately one-mile round trip hike.  Recognize trees by their scent, bark and leaves; look and listen for signs of wildlife as they prepare for winter. A professional interpreter from the Department of Conservation and Recreation will lead the walk. 

All ages welcome.  This event is free, and you can register at

and additional information about the hike is at

We look forward to seeing you.

SNETT sign on Grove St

More about the Metacomet Land

More about Franklin and Bellingham Rail Trail Committee:

Where is the trail?

View Larger Map

Babysitting Taught at the Y

The YMCA has earned a reputation for programs that focus on youth development: from childcare to camp and t-ball to teen leaders clubs. Now, young adults ready for increased responsibility and earned income also have the chance to improve their babysitting skills at the Y. Dawn DaCosta, Teen Director at the Hockomock Area YMCA’s North Attleboro Branch, is offering a Saturday American Safety and Health Institute Babysitting Course. 
The class will be offered Saturday, September 21st at the Y located at 300 Elmwood Street in North Attleboro. It is a great opportunity for youth ages 11-15 interested in sitting for siblings or working outside the home to gain critical skills. Also, to gain the confidence needed to care for children – from infancy and beyond. Upon completion of the class, participants will be given a student handbook and certification card. 
Class time is from 10:00am – 4:00pm and costs $60 for members of the Y, $90 for nonmembers. Registration is available by calling the Y at 508.695.7001. For convenience, members may register online at (category Teens). Questions should be directed to Dawn at 508.643.5270 or
Nurture their potential
Nurture their potential

About the Hockomock Area YMCA
The Y is the nation’s leading nonprofit committed to strengthening communities in the areas of youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. At the Hockomock Area YMCA, strengthening community is its cause. Every day, the Hockomock Area YMCA works side-by-side with its neighbors to make sure that everyone, regardless of age, income, or background, has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive.

On the web: Fred Astaire opens, Apples ready for picking

Fred Astaire Dance Studio opens in Franklin

The ballroom dance studio at 475 Franklin Village Drive opened last week and already has built up a long list of clients.
For more about the Fred Astaire Dance Studio, visit their website

Apples Ripe for the Picking at Wrentham, MA Farm

It is that time of year when the nights turn cool and the apples are ready for picking at the local Big Apple fruit and vegetable farm in Wrentham, MA!