Monday, September 12, 2011

Kennedy Community Playground can use your help!

The current wooden structural playground at the Kennedy School services the nearly 500 students enrolled at Kennedy in Kindergarten through 5th Grade. In addition, the playground is a popular play spot all year long to the many residents and extended family members of the nearby neighborhoods.

The existing main structure shows evidence of wear and has several components with cracked, splintered and worn parts. The aging wooden structure and plastic components that are cracked or broken are contributing to splinters and other injuries to the children who use this playground.

The Principal has requested a new playground for several years in the budgeting process and it has been denied each time with funds going toward repairs of the school building itself. Additionally, with school funding challenges and reductions in physical activities, the playground is more important than ever in the physical well-being of the student population.

The Kennedy Parent Communication Council (PCC) is the parent community for Kennedy School and, based on widespread support and urging, has initiated a Playground Project to pursue replacement of the main playground area. The PCC has established a Playground Committee and has begun setting aside funds in a special account earmarked just for the playground. The Playground Committee is exploring designs from the same manufacturer as most other school playgrounds in Franklin.

The Playground Committee is pursuing a new playground for Kennedy School that:
- is fun, challenging and supports the physical development and well-being of the Kennedy student population;
- is safe and accessible to children aged 5 - 12 years;
- utilizes certain elements of existing playground (ie. swingset and poured access path) to maintain costs.
- is cost efficient through use of local community volunteer support of demolition of the current playground and installation of the new equipment.

The Committee will seek funding from sources including:
- PCC donations from the Kennedy students' families;
- Corporate donations and sponsorships;
- Local community fundraising;
- Corporate, state and federal grant funds;
- Possible town funding support.

Installation of the new playground in Spring of 2012.

Visit their website for additional information and fund raising links

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a common denominator

"I was disturbed. It was the American flag and it was destroyed," said Michael DelConte, the branch manager of the store on Forge Parkway. "It's not good to see the American flag in that condition." 
So DelConte turned to Franklin resident Robert Long, the owner of Franklin Flags. 
Long, who began his business selling American flags just months after Sept. 11, 2001, is offering to retire American flags damaged by Tropical Storm Irene at no cost, and replace them at discounted prices.

Read more:

Visit the Franklin Flags website here:

Tucoola - Games for Kids and Parents to Play Together

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Free Technology for Teachers by (Mr. Byrne) on 9/10/11

Tucoola is a free site offering games for children and parents. The site has a section of single user activities for kids and section of two user activities for parents to play with their children. Most of the activities are simple enough for children four years old to play. The activities include things like simple jigsaw puzzles, checkers, and basic number games. The site can be used without registration, but parents who do choose to register themselves and their children can access activity reports for what their children have done on the site.

Applications for Education
Tucoola isn't breaking any new ground with their games and activities, but if you're looking for some basic skills practice activities it's worth bookmarking Tucoola. The option to access activity reports for their children might be an appealing feature for parents.

Things you can do from here:

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Ichigo Ichie is coming

Ichigo Ichie is making progress toward their published opening date of October 2011. They operate one location in East Providence and will be expanding to their second here in Franklin in the former Piccadily Pub building.

You can visit their website to view their menu

From the Town Council meeting earlier this year (approving their liquor license)

Sports fund raising

Franklin High School athletes were going door to door on Saturday with a fund raising effort. The card provides discounts at local merchants. Two pictured are Sports Authority and British Beer Company.

FHS - sports fund raising 1


This is good exercise as they walked door to door. Better than standing outside a store with a traditional coffee can.

Franklin, MA: Town Council Agenda - 9/14/11

A. APPROVAL OF MINUTES – July 20, 2011




2011 Election Workers
Registrar of Voters
Conservation Commission
Finance Committee

Alcoholic Beverages Licensees – Failure to Pass Compliance Check – 7:10
Devita’s Market
Joe’s American Bar and Grill
Tedeschi Food Shop
Uptowne Pub

New All Alcoholic Beverages License – Sakebom - 264 Franklin Village Drive

1. Residential Soliciting – Stephen T. Williams
2. Tropical Storm Irene – Gary McCarraher


1. Resolution 11-10: Request for Legislation – Exempting the Deputy Fire Chief from Civil Service (Tabled on 8/10/2011)
2. Resolution 11-45: Chapter 61A-1st Refusal Option – Land on Spring Street
3. Resolution 11-47: Authorization for Intermunicipal Agreement with Town of Medway for Shared Nursing Services
4. Resolution 11-48: Acceptance of Gift of Land at 1156 Pond Street (Lot #2)
5. Resolution 11-49: Grant of Sewer Easement on Property At 82 (Formerly 95) Park Rd
6. Bylaw Amendment 11-663: Sewer Rates-Appendix B- List of Service Rates - 2nd Reading
7. Bylaw Amendment 11-664: Water Rates-Appendix B-List of Service Rates- 2nd Reading





Negotiations, Litigation, Real Property, as May Be Required


To read and review the full set of documents for this agenda, you can follow this link to the PDF

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Circle of Friends Coffeehouse: Ellis Paul

The Circle of Friends Coffeehouse presents Ellis Paul, singer, songwriter, poet and troubadour, with special guests Lori Diamond and Fred Abatelli on Saturday, Sept. 17, 8:00 PM 
Admission is $25.

The line up this season is a great one. Angel Band, Lori McKenna, Peter Yarrow, and Peter Mulvey are among those slated to appear. Check out the full schedule here

The Circle of Friends Coffeehouse is an acoustically great place for a concert. The dessert selection is awesome and decadent!
In September 2001 the coffeehouse moved to the First Universalist Society meetinghouse, 262 Chestnut St, Franklin. Doors open at 7:30 PM and all concerts start at 8:00 PM unless otherwise noted. All concerts are non-smoking and alcohol free.

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The United Regional Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a seminar entitled Business Sustainability for the Real World: Bringing Economic Wellbeing to Our Business Community on Sept. 14. 
Learn ways to increase your market share, opportunities that sustainability can bring you, how it can help reduce operating costs, and much more. 

The event will be held at Living Waters Conference Center, 15 John L. Dietsch Blvd., North Attleborough from 8:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
The registration cost is $25. The price includes lunch. Call the Chamber at 508-222-0801 to reserve your place.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Farmer's Market - open - noon to 6:00 PM

Labor Day may be behind us, summer over, school underway but that doesn't mean the Farmer's Market is closed!

Franklin Farmers Market,  Friday,  12:00pm to 6:00pm

Located on the Town Common

Franklin: Farmers Market

Reminder that the Farmers' Market now accepts SNAP dollars and can double your purchasing power.

Visit the Food Pantry tent at the Farmers' Market for details.

Photography services - what is taxable?

As a father with two daughters, the tax implications for wedding photography caught my attention. The MA Dept of Revenue writes:
If you're heading toward a wedding, a few minutes of reading time here could save you and the bride- or groom-to-be a few bucks, or at least explain the possible sales tax implications for your wedding photography or videography (the same rules apply to both). 
Generally, the sales tax applies to any sale at retail by any vendor of tangible personal property, so it is clear that a conventional wedding album or a DVD of wedding photos generates a sales tax. 
But assembling photos in an album or DVD is no longer the sole method of delivering a photography product such as wedding pictures to a client, which makes a world of difference in sales tax. A wedding album or DVD is a product delivered to the purchaser in a tangible medium. You can put your hands on it, and so it is taxed as tangible personal property. 
So how does this work in practice? Let's say you contract with a photographer to pay $3,500 for photography services on your wedding day, and also contract to pay $500 for a DVD of the photos. The $4,000 total is subject to sales tax because the photographer produced a tangible product which you are contractually obligated to purchase.
Read more on this matter in the DOR posting here

Franklin Democratic Town Committee: Clean Air presentation

The wild weather patterns of the last several months will provide a unique backdrop for a presentation on the Massachusetts Clean Energy Plan in Franklin. When the Franklin Democratic Town Committee meets on Monday, September 12 at 7 pm, local physicist Ted McIntyre will give a presentation on the plan which was launched in December 2010. The Franklin Committee welcomes anyone who is interested in this topic to attend the meeting.  
The 136-page Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 contains a "portfolio" of established and new measures that reduce energy waste, save money, and stimulate the adoption of clean energy technologies, thereby creating jobs at the same time that they reduce GHG emissions. It is estimated that 42,000 to 48,000 jobs would result from full implementation of the plan in 2020, both jobs that fill every niche in the clean energy supply chain – electricians, installers, researchers, architects, manufacturers, plumbers, energy auditors, technicians, and scientists – and jobs throughout the economy as lower fossil-fuel energy expenses lead to more spending on in-state goods and services. 
"There are many excellent reasons to support the plan, but here is one jaw-dropping reason to back it: $22 billion dollars," noted McIntyre.  "That is how much money leaves Massachusetts each year to pay for the coal, natural gas and petroleum we use." 
McIntyre is the President of the Mass Climate Action Network (MCAN) and presents frequently on the topic.  In addition to his work with MCAN, McIntyre helped establish the Franklin Area Climate Team. As a physicist, McIntyre is currently working to develop advanced equipment for use in the manufacture of computer chips. He holds seven patents and has authored more than twenty technical publications.  
The clean energy plan "lays out an ambitious but practical framework to continue – and accelerate – the Commonwealth's transition to clean energy," said Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs-designate Rick Sullivan. "I look forward to maintaining this momentum as our state distinguishes itself as the national leader on clean energy and greenhouse gas emissions reductions." 
The Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA), signed by Governor Deval Patrick in August 2008, mandates the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050, and requires the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to set a legally enforceable GHG emissions limit for 2020 of between 10 percent and 25 percent below 1990 levels by January 1, 2011, and to issue a plan for achieving those reductions while growing the clean energy economy. 
"Massachusetts has already taken great strides in energy innovation, sparking a clean energy revolution in the Commonwealth and getting us two-thirds of the way toward 25 percent lower emissions by 2020," said Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Ian Bowles. "I am confident we will meet the 25 percent limit I set today with a portfolio of policies that build on reforms made to date, launch practical new initiatives on a pilot basis, and generate cost savings and jobs." 
In other business, the Franklin Democrats will continue reaching out to Franklin residents who are interested in running for one of the 35 positions on the town committee next March.  Nomination papers will be available for signing at the September 12 meeting.  The committee will also discuss the upcoming Senate race in Massachusetts and the current slate of candidates who are poised to take on Scott Brown in 2012. 
The Franklin committee normally meets on the second Monday of the month in the training room on the third floor of the Franklin Municipal Building. For more information on the Democratic Party or any of their meetings, please contact Jeffrey Roy at or check out the FDTC website at
To learn more about the Clean Air plan, go to or

Pond Pfeffer: The trials and tribulations of Irene

Sent to you by Steve Sherlock via Google Reader:

via Wicked Local Franklin News RSS by Judith Pond Pfeffer/Franklin on 9/8/11

Franklin, a city which always calls itself a town, was one of the victims of Tropical Storm Irene - trees down - branches down - roads closed - no power - but, in all this, there are those who still empower the "town spirit."

Things you can do from here:

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Public Workshop on Long Range Transportation Plan for MetroWest


WHEN: FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 9, 2011 - 8:30 a.m.


Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland) is inviting her constituents and all residents of the MetroWest region to attend a public workshop this Friday, September 9th to discuss the draft Long Range Transportation Plan: Paths to a Sustainable Region, now being considered by the Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (Boston MPO). The Long Range Plan establishes the Boston MPO’s transportation vision for the region, discusses plans to accomplish the vision, and identifies the regionally significant projects to be funded over the next 23 years. The residents of the 101 municipalities that make up the Boston MPO have until September 13th to review the draft and submit their comments.

David Mohler, Executive Director of the Office of Transportation Planning will discuss the draft and its proposals for transportation investments between now and 2035. All significant transportation projects must be included in Long Range Transportation Plan if they are to receive funding. This workshop is an opportunity for those in the MetroWest community to give their input into the creation of the plan. This is the chance for residents, public officials, and businesses to share with MassDOT their concerns and priorities for transportation investments in the region.

The Recommended Plan lists all the significant transportation projects the Boston MPO has selected for funding over the next 20-plus years. For the MetroWest region, it includes two rail trails and one highway project.

This workshop gives residents from the area a voice in the process and a chance to discuss their vision for the 495/MetroWest region and what they see as the pressing transportation and infrastructure needs of these communities.

The draft of Paths to a Sustainable Region, can be viewed at the link listed below:

Election line up still uncertain

Friday, Sept. 16, is the last day to take out nomination papers, and the deadline to return them is three days later, Monday, Sept. 19. 
Twenty-nine town positions are open, including every seat on the School Committee and Town Council. Neither body has staggered terms, so all incumbents are up for election at the same time every two years. 
Both contenders for town clerk are familiar in town politics. Deborah Pellegri, who has served as town clerk for 27 years and last faced opposition 17 years ago, will be challenged by Deborah Bartlett, a former town councilor.

Read more:

A summary of election 2011 items can be found here:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Franklin Citizens Rail Trail - mission statement

An email to members of the Franklin Citizens Rail Trail Committee:
At the last meeting, we discussed reviewing the FCRTC mission statement and a possible name change for the committee. In advance of our meeting, below is the current FCRTC mission statement for your review. The mission is also posted on the web site at Also below are sample mission statements from two other area trail groups, and attached is a brief article on the importance of a mission statement.

Hope you can all attend on Sept 13 (7:30 pm at the YMCA in Franklin)
Please let me or Dave know if you have any questions or comments.

Thank you.
The Franklin Citizens Rail Trail Committee (FCRTC) is a non-profit, community based organization that is dedicated to the development of the Southern New England Trunk Trail into a multi-use, recreational path that will link communities and businesses in a safe, healthy and aesthetically pleasing manner. Members of the FCRTC are committed to exploring all private, state and federal funding avenues, to implement all necessary design plans and studies and to develop our multi-use path for non-motorized bikers, joggers, strollers, horse riders and the handicapped. 
Other Sample Statements
Friends of the Bruce Freeman Trail (lowell, sudbury, framingham): 
The Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail is a group of citizens working in partnership with state and local governments toward the completion of the proposed rail trail. This is a volunteer group which is active in moving forward the state and federal issues required for the planning, design, construction, and maintenance of the rail trail, fundraising activities and support for rail trail issues at local town meetings. The Friends work to ensure that all the questions, concerns and other issues are addressed by working in concert with neighborhood associations, each town government, and the citizens of the towns. 
Grand Trunk Trailblazers 
The Grand Trunk Trail Blazers is a non-profit 501(c)(3) chartered in 1992. Our goal is to collaborate with local trail groups to establish a non-motorized 60-80 mile East-West trail linking the Blackstone with the Pioneer Valley names "The Titanic Rail Trail".

The Mission Statement article -

FCRTC - Article

The Mission Statement worksheet -

FCRTC - Worksheet