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Acton/Boxboro/Maynard

Current Edition - 7/30/21
Previous Edition - 7/23/21

HEADLINES

Broadway Comes to Maynard for Free Summer Concert

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MAYNARD: On Saturday, August 7, at 6pm, the Maynard Public Library will be holding its annual free summer concert in Memorial Park. According to the show's organizers, this won't just be an event, it will be a re-emergence, as people who have spent much of the pandemic inside their homes will have a chance to be part of a live, in-person musical gathering for the first time in over a year. To add to that excitement, Maynard is going Broadway as one of the theater's most glamorous stars, Melissa Errico, will be performing "Amour and After: The Music of Michel Legrand."
 
Errico was nominated for a Tony award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical for the play Amour. The Wall Street Journal described her concert performance as "one of the most moving and even thrilling cabaret shows ever." She has also starred as Eliza Doolittle in "My Fair Lady" and as Cosette in "Les Misérables." As a result of this concert, for one night in August, the lights of Broadway will be shining brightly in the town of Maynard. The rain location is the Maynard High School auditorium on Tiger Drive. No tickets will be required for the auditorium.
 

Art Exhibit ”Lines of Thought” by Linda DeStefano Brown at 6 Bridges

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MAYNARD: Art Exhibit ”Lines of Thought” – Images and Poems from Imagination and Our Common Experiences by Linda DeStefano Brown will be presented at 6 Bridges Gallery, 77 Main Street in Maynard, MA: “Lines of Thought” by Linda DeStefano Brown. The exhibit will be on view August 18 – October 2, 2021, with a virtual reception via Zoom on Thursday September 9th from 7-8 pm. Registration required beginning August 18 at https://forms.gle/59LsCh49H6ceBpg69. The exhibit can also be viewed at http://6bridges.gallery/6-bridges-gallery-updates/.
 
Brown writes: “Through images and poems, this exhibit relies on our imaginations and our common experiences. Forms and objects found in nature are used as metaphors revealing secrets embedded deep within. Nature guides us along our individual journeys that are sometimes difficult, sometimes jubilant. Words create images in our minds, and these thoughts spiral through life tying past, present and future together. These distinct stages of time exist simultaneously in a single cerebral space."
 
Brown earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Master of Public Administration from Eastern Michigan University. She began her work in photography processing black and white film. Now she works in her digital lab creating images that present alternative ways of seeing and thinking about the complex existence we share. Her work has been displayed throughout the Boston Metro area since her return to Massachusetts in 2014. She is a member of 6 Bridges Gallery in Maynard, Arts Wayland in Wayland, and Fountain Street in Boston.
 
6 Bridges Gallery was established in 2014 by a group of artists to create a retail and display gallery in the heart of downtown Maynard. The ever-changing work in the gallery includes a diverse range of media and artistic styles. All artisans are local; many - including Gallery founding members - are residents of the ArtSpace Maynard studios. The gallery is owned and operated by the artists, so there is a unique opportunity to meet one or more of them on any given day.
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Composting in Boxborough

BOXBOROUGH: A new, expanded and more inclusive composting system is now available to Boxborough residents at the Town Transfer Station.  In addition to vegetable waste, Black Earth Compost Company’s new green bins accept meat and seafood scraps, bones, shells, fruit pits, corncobs, dairy, cooking grease and other such items when they are wrapped in paper bags, newspaper, or certified compostable bag liners.

Public Works Director Ed Kukkula brought the new waste management system to Boxborough with the support of the Town Sustainability Committee.  Committee Chair Francie Nolde says, “Gardeners who compost can now recycle food waste that used to go in the trash.  What Black Earth takes will reduce the amount of trash the Town pays to haul away.” 

Black Earth’s composting guide can be found through the DPW and on the Sustainability Committee’s website.  Black Earth compost may be purchased at garden centers and on line at www.blackearthcompost.com.

Businesses in Your Community

Fifers

Boxborough Fifer's Day: September 11, 2021

BOXBOROUGH: On Saturday, September 11, Boxborough will celebrate Fifer's Day at Flerra Meadows on Stow Road. The Day will commence with the Fifer’s Four Mile Road Race in the morning followed by a parade from the Blanchard School to Flerra Meadow and then presentation of the Golden Fife Award.  The Fair activities start at noon and include food and barbecue, including a vegetarian option, children’s games and activities, volleyball tournament, booths representing Town organizations, a craft fair, and live music throughout the afternoon.  For more information or to sign up for a non-profit booth, craft booth, road race, or volleyball please go to www.fifersday.org.

Fifer's Day is jointly sponsored by the Boxborough District Minuteman Company and the Town of Boxborough's Public Celebrations and Ceremonies Committee.
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Boxborough Museum Open August 8

BOXBOROUGH: The Boxborough Museum at 575 Middle Road will be open from 2pm to 4pm on Sunday, August 8. See Boxborough’s historic treasures including the 1850’s scale which is sensitive enough to weigh a penny and strong enough to calibrate a 50 lb. weight, the “new” hearse built in 1881, and the “old” hearse (see how old is old). Admission is free and all are welcome. In accordance with CDC guidelines, those who are not fully vaccinated should wear masks. For more information or if anyone wishes to arrange a private tour for a small group at a different time please call John Fallon at 978-264-0069.
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Maynard Cultural Council Seeks Two New Members 

MAYNARD: Are you interested in working with artists? Are you interested in getting involved in the cultural life your town?  The Maynard Cultural Council (MCC) is looking to complete their organization by adding two additional voting members.  The MCC serves as the local representative of the Massachusetts Cultural Council for the purpose of supporting arts and humanities initiatives in Maynard by granting funds allocated to the town by the Commonwealth. The Council is a volunteer organization appointed by the Select Board. Meetings are typically scheduled on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month  at the Maynard Town Hall. Meetings are open to the public, so if you would like to participate, you are more than welcome. For more information please contact MCC chair Sara Lundberg at sara.d.lundberg@gmail.com or Maynard Cultural Council Secretary Rich Pepin at richardpepin3@gmail.com.
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Camellia Gardens Hosts Christmas in July Flea Market, and All are Invited

MAYNARD: Camellia Gardens is hosting a Christmas in July Flea Market on Saturday, July 31 (10am-3pm) and all are invited to participate! If you have any items that you would like to come out and trade, barter, sell, or gift, Christmas themed or otherwise, please don't hesitate to reach out, they'd love to have you! This event is open to bakers, jewelers, potters, quilters and crafters of all kinds and is free for all to attend. If you plan on participating as a vendor please provide your own tables and pop-up tents if needed. Reach out to Rachel at 583-actcoord@hawthornret.com with any additional questions.
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Bag Sale to Support Friends of Maynard Seniors

MAYNARD: During the month of July The Friends of Maynard Seniors will receive a $1.00 donation from each purchase of the $2.50 give back reusable community bag sold at the Stop and Shop store located at 100 Powder Mill Road in Acton and the Stop and Shop store located at 10 Technology Drive in Hudson. Please consider purchasing these reusable bags to help the environment while helping the Friends of Maynard Seniors. Your support is appreciated!
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Maynard Mural Design Announced

MAYNARD: The Maynard 150th Committee, in partnership with the  Maynard Cultural Council & District, is excited to announce the next "Maynard as a  Canvas” project to commission a new mural in the heart of  downtown. This prominent site is a highly visible feature in the ongoing revitalization of this  area. We are happy to announce that Salem, Massachusetts artist Anna Dugan has been selected. Dugan is a first generation Filipinx American artist with a BFA from the University of Massachusetts, Lowell. She paints murals, chalk art, and designs digital work. Her work celebrates her heritage, navigates the complexities of identity through vibrant colors, storytelling & folk art inspired work. “I am so excited to bring this mural to life in Maynard,” says Dugan, “Public art is an incredible way to make art accessible to everyone and to bring vibrancy to a space. I cannot wait to paint, interact with Maynard locals, and beautify this wall!”

Explains Dugan, “When celebrating a town or city we can of course focus on historical events, common work forces, or figureheads throughout our past. But I think there is one major component that comes above all of those things: the community. The people who make up our cities and towns are the very thing that keeps us connected to our past, appreciative of our present, and shapes our future. I want to celebrate the ways in which people in Maynard connect to one another, keep each other strong, and shape the community as a whole. Each figure in my mural is abstracted a bit to only be a shape of a person. I purposefully keep facial features out of the way so that people in the community can mentally fill in the blanks, to see themselves, their friends, families, neighbors, and other community members in the shapes. Each figure is one color, but overlaps with the figures around them to create new colors entirely. When we take a step back, we can all take in the very colorful explosion of joy that is created when our communities come together. After the year+ that we have all had, we can use more joy in our lives. And what better way to give our communities that than through a vibrant colorful celebration of themselves!

On the shorter side of the mural I decided to include a poem called 'Sunflowers' by Rupi Kaur that I believe encompasses the resiliency, strength, and emotion that our communities have shown over the pandemic. I think we have all reflected on the fragility of life and the importance of living with purpose and joy in the small time we have on this Earth. It is a truly beautiful sentiment & reminder."

The Maynard Cultural Council and District continues to fundraise for this project. If you would like to donate to the effort you can do so in one of two ways: VIA Venmo: @maynardmural you will need to enter the code 8525, or send a check to Town Hall care of Maynard Cultural District Mural Fund. The Maynard Cultural District has secured funds  from the support of Massachusetts COVID impacted artists. The Maynard  Sesquicentennial Committee, the Maynard Community Enhancement Fund and several  local citizens have also pledged contributions. Local artists have agreed to donate their labor and tools to prepare the wall for the mural.
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Acton Apartment Dwellers Climate Action Coalition Meeting

ACTON: Acton Apartment Dwellers! Are your utility bills too high? Is your apartment too cold in the winter or too hot in the summer? Is your rent too high? Are you concerned about the environment?
 
Make your voice heard on July 17 from 3pm to 5pm at NARA Park Bath House Pavilion. Work together with others to find ways that renters can save energy, reduce utility bills and protect the environment. You’ll get free energy-saving light bulbs and thechance to win door prizes. Interpretation, children’s activities and accommodations for accessibility will be provided.
 
Need a ride? Mention so on the registration form, and you’ll be sent a free accessible van to pick you up. To register, fillout the form at tinyurl.com/actonrenters or text 978-393-1090. You can choose to attend this event in person, or virtually using Zoom.

AARP Massachusetts Fraud Watch Update: July 2021

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Did you know that someone’s identity gets stolen every two seconds?  The AARP Fraud Watch Network provides you with tips and resources to help you spot and avoid identity theft and fraud so you can protect yourself and your family.  Our watchdog alerts will keep you up to date on con artists’ latest tricks.  It’s free of charge for everyone:  AARP members, non-members, and people of all ages.  Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam. Report scams to local law enforcement. Contact the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork for more information on fraud prevention.

SCAM ALERT #1: DOOR TO DOOR SCAMS
Warm weather is here which means door-to-door sales crews are here, too. But what they’re selling isn’t always legit. Be cautious anytime a stranger comes knocking, especially if the visitor is trying to sell you goods or services. Be wary of contractors who say they stopped by because they just happened to be in the neighborhood. The good ones are usually too busy to roam around in search of work. Also be on guard for high pressure tactics to make a quick decision for a steep discount, and requests for payment upfront. Your best bet is to proactively seek out services if you need them, versus reacting to an unexpected sales pitch. It’s always okay to explain you don’t do business at your front door (or to not answer when strangers knock).

SCAM ALERT #2:  PROTECT YOUR DEVICE, PROTECT YOURSELF
Many scams originate right at your fingertips through your computer or smartphone. The good news is the way to block them is also within your grasp. Here are three tips to keep your devices safe from criminals. Make sure your devices’ operating systems are up to date; you should be able to set an auto-update feature that downloads the latest software when available. Next, make sure to change the password on your Wi-Fi router so it’s different from the password it came with. If you have a lot of devices connected to it, they could be vulnerable if the router is compromised. Lastly, a password manager is a great way to create unique and hard-to-guess passwords for all of your online accounts and apps.

SCAM ALERT #3: RENTAL CAR SCAMS
America is open for business again and millions of people are traveling, or planning to. One thing you may run into is sticker shock – especially with rental cars. The lack of travel in 2020 led rental companies to sell a lot of their inventory of cars. Now that demand has spiked, supply is tight and prices are high.
Unfortunately, criminals are paying attention and posting fake rental car deals at rock bottom prices online. While everyone loves a good deal, doing business with an entity you aren’t familiar with could be risky. Whatever your travel needs, stick to reputable websites with proven track records. If you do find a deal with an unfamiliar provider, do your research: look up the company name with “scam” or “complaint” and see what appears, and check out reviews.

SCAM ALERT #4: FREE TRIAL OFFERS, NEGATIVE OPTIONS
Who doesn’t love something for free? But beware, that “free trial offer” might mean months of payments that you didn’t know you signed up for and will have a hard time canceling. These types of sales tactics are called negative options – a customer signs up for a free trial and unwittingly accepts a subscription – sometimes for a questionable product – often by not seeing a pre-checked box in the very tiny print. When it comes to free trials, research before you enroll. Fully understand the terms and conditions by reading the fine print. Keep a close eye on your credit and debit card statements so you spot unexpected charges right away. Contact your bank or credit card company to address the issue; calling the company you inadvertently signed up for a subscription with will likely get you nowhere.

Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam. Report scams to local law enforcement. For help from AARP, call 1-877-908-3360 or visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork.

Protect Stonefield Farm/Walking Tour

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ACTON: At Town Meeting in June, Acton residents voted nearly unanimously for the town to fund an Agricultural Preservation Restriction (APR) on Stonefield Farm, a 51.5-acre property in South Acton, owned by the Boston Area Gleaners, a non-profit, food rescue and hunger relief organization. The APR will preserve in perpetuity approximately 28 acres of the farm for agricultural use. It will also preserve  23 acres of the Farm for conservation purposes, support sustainable agriculture and hunger relief organizations in the region, encourage continued and new farming enterprises through educational and volunteer opportunities, support regional farms through partnerships with the Boston Area Gleaners and will create passive recreational opportunities, including potential hiking trails within the conservation lands and direct trail linkage between the Assabet River Rail Trail and future farm stand operations.

Sudbury Valley Trustees (SVT) and ACT are jointly raising funds for the Boston Area Gleaners to close the gap between the value of the APR and Acton’s payment.  ACT and SVT launched a campaign earlier this month to raise $50,000 to help with this purchase.  So far they have reached half of that amount. 

Join in on a 1-mile walking tour of Stonefield Farm with Christa Collins of SVT and Jody Harris of ACT, with an introduction to the history and features of the farm and surrounding lands. Friday, July 9, 10am-11:30am. Family groups are welcome!  To register, contact Jody Harris at jharris.actonconservationtrust@gmail.com.

To donate to the “Campaign for Stonefield”, visit www.actonconservationtrust.org and follow the link at the top of the page.  Or, you can send a check made payable to Acton Conservation Trust, PO Box 658, Acton, MA 01720. (Please write Stonefield Farm in the memo line.)  You can also donate online, via www.svtweb.org/land-protection/projects/stonefield-farm-acton.

Jon Kerr to step-down as Executive Director of Middlesex West Chamber of Commerce

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ACTON: After four years of leading the Middlesex West Chamber of Commerce, Executive Director, Jon Kerr will step away in late July of 2021.  He will continue to lead through to the Summerfest Event at Nara Park. Shifting his efforts to the demands and successes of his businesses, Jon will return to the private sector.

Kerr has steered the Chamber through some tough economic periods, including the pandemic.   Kerr’s 30 years of non-profit administration and small business experience was significant in helping navigate the chamber the past 4 years.   Additionally, Jon’s work with youth programs, coaching, and his track record of advocating, helped keep the MWCOC unlevered when many chambers across the country merged or closed.  During the pandemic, Kerr focused on advocating to the chamber members how to adapt, pivot and ultimately succeed despite the economic climate.

“Thank you all, for the many opportunities and learning experiences you have blessed me with over the past few years.  It was a pleasure to watch so many of you grow as businesses and to be a part of that.  I wish you all the best and look forward to seeing you as a business peer.” – Jon Kerr 

MWCOC will begin a search for Jon's replacement.  Details about the position and how to apply will be announced at a later date.

A Summer Season Returns Filled with Amazing Concerts & Events at Nara Park

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ACTON:  The Acton Recreation Department will be hosting a fantastic line-up of ticketed concerts this summer at NARA Park, 25 Ledge Rock Way.  These exciting events are open to Acton residents and non-residents. Purchasing tickets in advance is strongly encouraged so the Town can plan accordingly to ensure everyone has an awesome experience.  Doors open one hour prior to the concert start time.  All events are subject to change if necessary.

New this year, all concerts will be held at 8pm. and children 10 and under are free with a paid admission.  For the Kids MusicFest, tickets are $10 per person and children 2 and under are free. Beach Party and movie nights are free admission.  The venue will have a food vendor onsite that will offer grilled food, snacks, soft drinks, beer and wine.  No alcohol, large coolers or bags will be permitted. Cash and credit card will be accepted at the event for tickets and food.  Convenience fee of 3% will be added to all ticket purchases on a credit card.

Visit actonrec.com for a full event schedule and ticket information, or to get your discounted ticket in advance.  Tickets at the gate are subject to availability.  You can also purchase an advanced ticket at the Recreation Office at 50 Audubon Drive between the hours of 9-4 Monday through Thursday. 

Please note that due to COVID-19, all attendees who are not fully vaccinated must bring and wear their own face covering. Frequent use of hand sanitizer is highly recommended and made available and please social distance. The Town of Acton will not be held liable for any exposure or illness due to COVID-19 or any other virus/illness while attending any event at the Park. If an event is cancelled due to COVID-19, a full refund will be issued or you may use your ticket at another event at a future date.

The Amphitheater is an outdoor venue with lawn seating.  Please bring your own chairs and blankets. Please bring your own mosquito spray, hand sanitizer, and face covering (for non-vaccinated attendees).  Handicap parking is available and all parking is onsite and free.  Portable toilets are located near the Amphitheater.

The Acton Recreation Department is located at 50 Audubon Drive and organizes many free and low-cost events, open to the general public, throughout the year at both the Acton Recreation Department and NARA Park locations.   You can contact the office via e-mail at recreation@actonma.gov or visit the NARA Park Facebook page for upcoming events.
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Trinity College Announces Acton Resident Graduates

ACTON: Congratulations to local Acton residents graduating from Hartford (CT)'s Trinity College:
 
* Anna Cataldo-Holmes, earned a B.A. in Educational Studies.
* Thomas Peduto earned a B.A. in Political Science and Urban Studies.
* Courtney Elizabeth Robb earned a B.A. in Political Science and International Studies: Global Studies.
 
Founded in 1823, Trinity College Trinity College is an independent, nonsectarian liberal arts college with more than 2,100 students from 48 states and 70 countries. It is home to the eighth-oldest chapter of Phi Beta Kappa in the United States, and it is one of the only liberal arts colleges in the country with an accredited engineering program.
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Fall Friday Night Youth Dances Begin September 24

ACTON: Parents say students in the Acton Woman's Club Dance Classes come away with “real life” communication and social skills, dance moves from many styles and the confidence in themselves that comes with it... all while having fun! These classes fill up quickly, so register early for the Fall session at theactonwomansclub.org/dance. You can pay using PayPal, or mail a check to Acton Woman’s Club, PO Box 2253, Acton, MA 01720. The total cost for nine classes is $155.
 
There are many openings in the 8:20 to 9:20pm class for both males and females. There are waiting lists for female roles in the 5:40 and 7pm classes. There may be a few male role slots in the 5:40 pm class. Registrations will be taken for students going into 5th through 8th grades in the fall. All levels of experience are welcome.
 
The Dance Classes generate funds for the AWC’s philanthropic activities, which include ABRHS senior college scholarships and donations to local charities. For nearly seven decades, these classes have been held in the upstairs hall of the Acton Woman’s Club, a non-profit, charitable social club at 503 Main Street in Acton Center. To ensure safety, four new Honeywell HEPA air filters have been installed in the hall.
 
For more information, visit https://theactonwomansclub.org/dance.
Wacton

Annual Oktoberfest Returns to West Acton Village

WEST ACTON: The West Acton Merchants Association (WAVMA) is pleased to announce that its Annual Oktoberfest will once again be held this year in West Acton Village at Gardner Field, a  large and shady playground , on Route 111, near the intersection of Spruce Street and Massachusetts Avenue, on September 25 from 10am to 3pm (with a rain date of October 2). This is a hugely popular, well attended, community-wide event, with prior attendance in the thousands, and has something for folks of all ages, from toddlers right on up! And, of course, a scrumptious and varied Food Court!

While businesses within West Acton Village will be involved, vendors from anywhere else, outside of Acton, for a $50 application fee, are also encouraged and welcome to participate and will also  have a 10’ x 10’ space to set up shop! Please request an application and more information by writing to WAVMerchants@gmail.com or calling 978-399-4444. You can also find more information online at www.westactonvillage.org.
Stmichaels

Local Residents named
to Spring 2021 Dean’s List
at Saint Michael’s College

BOXBOROUGH: The following local students were named to the Dean’s List at Saint Michael’s College for the Spring 2021 semester.

* Danielle Butler, a senior biology major from Acton (01720) and a graduate of Acton Boxborough Regional High School.
* Daniel Armstrong, a junior criminology major from Acton (01720) and a graduate of Acton Boxborough Regional High School.
* Clea Edelman, a May 2021 graduate art and design major from Concord (01742) and a graduate of Chapel Hill - Chauncy Hall School.
* William Meehan, a senior business administration & economics major from Concord (01742) and a graduate of Concord Carlisle Regional High School.

Saint Michael’s College, founded in the great Catholic intellectual tradition, which also recognizes the principles of social justice and compassion, is a selective, fully residential Catholic college in Vermont’s beautiful Green Mountains. Our closely connected community delivers internationally-respected liberal arts and graduate education near Burlington, one of the country’s best college towns. To prepare for fulfilling careers and meaningful lives, young adults here grow intellectually, socially, and morally, learning to be responsible for themselves, each other and their world.
All together with awards

BCTrust Blanchard Memorial School 4th Grade Art Contest Announces Winners

BOXBOROUGH: The Boxborough Conservation Trust (BCTrust) is pleased to announce the winners of its annual Art Contest. All 4th graders at the Blanchard Memorial School are welcome to participate, with the winning designs are printed in this Spring's Common Ground newsletter and on this year's BCTrust t-shirt (a limited number will be available for purchase at Fifer's Day, on September 11). The four winners created some beautiful artwork that fit perfectly with this year's theme: "Protect Pollinators!"  The winners were: Hanna Bialowolksa (1st), Kiley Lyons (2nd), Cate Warrington (3rd), and Isla Weir (Honorable Mention). Congratulations to all of the winners and all entrants!
Giveblood

DONORS URGENTLY NEEDED: Red Cross Still Facing Severe Blood Shortage

The American Red Cross continues to experience a severe blood shortage that is negatively affecting blood product availability across the country. Donors of all blood types – especially type O and those giving platelets – are urged to make an appointment to give now and help ensure hospital shelves are stocked with blood products over the Fourth of July holiday and beyond.
  

Right now, the Red Cross is working around the clock to provide blood products to hospitals responding to an unusually high number of traumas and emergency room visits, as well as overdoses and resulting transplants. As a result of the blood shortage, some hospitals are being forced to slow the pace of elective surgeries until the blood supply stabilizes, delaying crucial patient care. 

In addition, while summer is traditionally a time when blood donations decline, this year is particularly challenging as many Americans receive their vaccinations and resume summer activities after more than a year of limited interactions and travel, leading to lower donor turnout. The need for blood doesn’t take a holiday break − patients still depend on lifesaving transfusions.

Donors are needed now to prevent further delays to patient care. Schedule an appointment to give blood now by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device.

As a thank-you, all those who come to give July 1-6 will receive a Red Cross embroidered hat by mail,* while supplies last. And, donors who come to give July 7-31 will receive a $10 Amazon.com Gift Card by email, plus a chance to win gas for a year (a $5,000 value). (Terms and conditions apply; visit rcblood.org/fuel). 
In most cases, those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine can donate. However, knowing the name of the manufacturer of the vaccine they received is important in determining donation eligibility.
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The Town of Acton Swap Shop looking for volunteers!

ACTON: Did you love to visit the Swap Shop? Are you a people person? Will you have a few hours this year to volunteer doing something fun? Are you ready to resume the old normal?? We are looking for volunteers for the 2021 season.
The Swap Shop opened in 2015 at the Acton Transfer Station and Recycling center. Anyone with a recycling or trash sticker can use the Swap Shop, which is next to the textile recycling bins, just downhill from the main recycling area. The idea is that gently used items can be left for free, and any of these items can be picked up for free. The purpose of the Swap Shop is to keep more objects out of the trash area, and put perfectly usable items into the hands of those that can use them.
 
The Swap Shop is open Tuesday through Saturday. Volunteers pick their own hours as the schedule is very flexible.
Here is the Town of Acton link to the Swap Shop Program: http://www.acton-ma.gov/507/Swap-Shop
Please contact Debby Andell if you would like more information - debbyandell@gmail.com
Actonseal

Acton BoS Seeks Volunteers

ACTON: Acton Residents:  Are you curious about how much work is done by town volunteers?  The Board of Selectmen seeks volunteers to serve on the Volunteer Coordinating Committee.  This is your chance to make a difference!  This committee is responsible for assisting the Selectmen in recruiting and screening potential volunteers for the nearly four dozen boards, committees, and commissions with members appointed by the Board of Selectmen.

You can file a volunteer application directly from the town website at http://www.acton-ma.gov/formcenter/town-managers-office-5/volunteer-application-43.  There is no better way to give back to your community than volunteering.
Newtree

Culturally and Climatically Forward Through Maynard’s Downtown Arboretum

MAYNARD: Neil Pederson, a member of the Maynard Tree Corps, will lead a walk to officially welcome new trees to downtown Maynard on July 10 at 4pm.  The walk will begin at Memorial Park and amble down Nason Street and then east on Main Street over the course of 1 1/2 hours.  We will visit each tree and each tree will be given a tag noting its name and size when planted.  The tags and tour are supported by a grant from the Maynard Cultural Council and the MA Cultural Council.

Life for trees in cities can be very hard and yet, when they are given conditions in which they can thrive, they beautify the landscape, cleanse the air and water, create an environment that literally enhances people’s lives and the businesses and neighborhoods in which they inhabit. We celebrate Maynard’s Sesquicentennial Year with high hopes for the Town and its tree canopy.  

An old proverb states, “A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.” This understanding is a partial driver of the philosophy within the Maynard Tree Corps. We aim to preserve, maintain, and enhance the trees of Maynard for all of us today, yes. But, we keep our eyes on the future, a future that brings many challenges. Our choices of a diversity of mostly trees home to eastern North America reflect both the growing ecological culture in our society and challenges for trees and forests moving forward.

Over the course of our hike, Neil will introduce attendees to each tree, talk about their ecology and unique values, while also talking about the benefits of trees to people and businesses that live in cities.
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Acton Community Dog Park Plans Pass

ACTON: A note from Tom Gillispie for the Acton Dog Park Committee: "On behalf of the Acton Dog Park Committee, I would like to say a big THANK YOU to all who supported  our efforts to bring this much-needed project to our Town by attending and voting (at a very late hour)  at the June 21 Town Meeting. A big shout-out goes to the awesome members of the Friends of Acton Community Dog Park who worked tirelessly on signs, articles, letters, and publications to raise  awareness of the facts at issue. Several local businesses provided products and services with some  donating part of costs including Minuteman Press, Loyal Companion and Roche Bros. Town leaders – Select Board Members, our Town Manager and countless committees provided support all along the  way, with special thanks and recognition to our (retiring) liaison Joan Gardner.

The $21K funds for the  required 10% Town Match of the Stanton construction Grant which enables us to afford this project was  passed with an overwhelming majority, and the non-binding Citizen’s Petition from the neighbors  seeking to have the Select Board remove that funding and somehow find a better site was defeated 130  to 74. While a lot of work, we were glad to participate in this valuable process of town debate and town  participation. 


Next steps are to continue to work with all in town, including neighbors, on concerns and ideas about  this project, to apply for a Stanton Design grant, select a design firm, and to hold a series of public  forums to get to a final design. A preliminary design will be used to start the Stanton construction grant  process, and upon receiving that grant, construction bids can be sought and work finally begin. 
Please watch for updates on this project through the Acton Community Dog Park’s Facebook page and  through our website at www.actondogpark.weebly.com. Again, THANK YOU!"
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Boxborough Democrats To Hold Caucus, Elect Delegates to State Convention

BOXBOROUGH: Boxborough Democrats will hold their annual caucus on Thursday, July 15, 2021 at 7 p.m. to elect three delegates (plus one ex-officio) and three alternates to the 2021 Massachusetts Democratic Convention. The caucus will be held virtually via Zoom. To obtain the link, please visit www.boxboroughdems.org.

All Boxborough registered and pre-registered Democrats are eligible to participate. Pre-registered Democrats who are 16 by June15th are eligible to run and be elected as delegates. Those not elected as a Delegate or Alternate, but who meet the qualifications, may apply to be add-on delegates in the following categories: youth, minority, disabled.

Delegates and alternates from across the state will gather at the convention for the purpose of adopting a party platform. The Convention will be held on Saturday, September 25th at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell. Elected delegates will be divided equally between men and women. Candidates whose gender identity is non-binary are able to run without needing to classify as either male or female.

Discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age, color, creed, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnic identity, economic status, or disability in the conduct of the caucus is strictly prohibited. Challenges to the delegate selection process can be filed with the Massachusetts Democratic Party, 11 Beacon Street, Suite 410, Boston, MA 02108 no later than ten days after the caucus  date.

For additional information, please contact Abby Reip, Chair of the Boxborough Democratic Town Committee at abbyreip@gmail.com or 978-490-5343.
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Pastor Brad Johnson Retires from Acton Church

ACTON: On Sunday, June 13, members and friends of Faith Evangelical Free Church in Acton honored their Senior Pastor, the Rev. Dr. Bradley Johnson, and his wife Kathy, for over 33 years of service to the church and community. Pastor Brad will be retiring from full-time pastoral service on July 31.

For the rest of 2021 Pastor Brad will remain on staff as a part-time associate pastor to help provide a smooth transition for the new senior pastor, the Rev. Dr. Ryan Fields, who will be moving from Chicago, Illinois. In January 2022, Pastor Brad and Kathy will begin a new part-time ministry of caring for pastors and their spouses within the New England District of the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA).

Brad and Kathy joined Faith EFC in February 1988 when he was called as Pastor of Youth and Family Life, serving in that capacity until 2004, when he became Associate Pastor. Upon the resignation of Rev. Doug Welch in 2005, Brad stepped into the role of Interim Pastor, until September 2006, when he accepted the call to become Senior Pastor. Since coming to Acton, he has been active in the New England District of the EFCA, serving on the ministerial board, the Camp Spofford board of directors, and various positions including chairman of the New England District board of directors.

Faith Evangelical Free Church has its roots in the Norwegian immigrant communities in Concord and Acton.  It was founded as the Norwegian Evangelical Free Church of Concord in 1920 and affiliated with the Norwegian-Danish Evangelical Free Church Association. In 1974 the church changed its name to Faith Evangelical Chapel and began meeting at the Conant School in Acton, until the completion in 1976 of the current building at 54 Hosmer Street. In 1993 the church changed its name to Faith Evangelical Free Church to highlight its affiliation with the Evangelical Free Church of America. A large addition to the building was dedicated for service in 2014, including a large multi-purpose room that is used for a number of community activities.

Remembering their own heritage as an immigrant church, Faith EFC is committed to immigrant communities, currently hosting Acton Korean Church, as well as Hope Chapel in Acton, a Brazilian church plant.  A daughter church called Life Church in Ayer currently meets at Devens.
Since 2002 Faith has hosted the Journey to Bethlehem – A Living Nativity each year as a Christmas gift to Acton and surrounding communities. Although the Journey had to be canceled last year because of Covid-19, they are hoping to resume the tradition this fall. For information, go to www.faithevfree.org.
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FPC Begins Lay-led Summer Services

STOW: Sunday, June 20, marks the beginning of lay-led summer services at First Parish Church of Stow & Acton, Unitarian Universalist (FPC). In the shadow of the one-year anniversary of George Floyd’s murder, members of the Racial Justice Task Force will reflect on what the past year has brought us and taught us during this service, entitled “A Long and Winding Road: The Ongoing Quest for Racial Justice.” The service will begin at 10am.
 
For more information about each individual service, call 978-897-8149 or visit http://fpc-stow-acton.org/services. Details about all upcoming summer services are listed on that page, including details about both the subject of each service and how to access it. To prevent disruptive intrusions, the virtual room will be locked about 15 minutes after a service begins. FPC apologizes for any inconvenience this causes.
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Read to Luna the Dog Live! at the Concord Free Public Library

CONCORD: The Concord Free Public Library invites children to Read to Luna the Dog on the Main Library lawn the second Friday of each month beginning in June between 11:30am-12:30pm. Luna is a certified therapy dog through Pets & People Foundation, Inc. Did you know that reading to dogs boosts reading skills and emotional and social skills for children? This event is for children ages 5+. Children are invited to register for their own individual 15 minute session with Luna. Register in advance by visiting the library's events calendar online at www.concordlibrary.org.
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Boxborough Rental Assistance Program Accepting New Applications

BOXBOROUGH: The Boxborough Rental Assistance Program (BRAP) is accepting new applications. The BRAP is funded by the Community Preservation Act and managed by the Boxborough Housing Board, together with Rose Gage, Boxborough’s Community Services Coordinator. The program provides $250 a month in rental assistance to qualifying households for up to three years. Monthly checks are mailed directly to landlords.  An applicant must identify an intended Boxborough rental unit and anticipated move-in date at the time of application. Participants must live in a rental unit in the Town of Boxborough while receiving assistance from the program. Income and other eligibility requirements apply. 
Applications can be found on the Town’s website: www.boxborough-ma.gov/167/Rental-Assistance-Program. For more information or for assistance completing the application, contact Rose Gage, Boxborough’s Community Services Coordinator, at 978-264-1719 or rgage@boxborough-ma.gov.
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Local Residents Receive Academic Honors

ACTON: Northeastern University is pleased to recognize those students who distinguish themselves academically during the course of the school year. The following students were recently named to the University's dean's list for the Spring semester, which ended in May 2021.

In addition to achieving distinction through the dean's list, these students are members of the University Honors Program, which offers high caliber students the chance to further hone their studies and interests, live in special interest residential communities, participate in enriched, interdisciplinary courses, and engage in research and creative endeavors, service, and global experiences. Invitation into the University Honors Program is highly competitive and students must maintain a high GPA to maintain membership.

To achieve the dean's list distinction, students must carry a full program of at least four courses, have a quality point average of 3.5 or greater out of a possible 4.0 and carry no single grade lower than a C- during the course of their college career. Each student receives a letter of commendation and congratulation from their college dean.

* Acton (01720) resident Christina Pathrose, majoring in computer science

* Acton (01720) resident Iris Wang, majoring in electrical and computer engr

* Acton (01720) resident Summer Weidman, majoring in environmtl studies/political science

* Acton (01720) resident Joshua Chun, majoring in undeclared

* Concord (01742) resident Kasey Lee, majoring in comp sci/mathematics
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June is PTSD Awareness Month

June is PTSD Awareness Month. Though most often associated with veterans who experienced atrocities of war, anyone, including children and teens, can suffer with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Children typically recover quickly from stressful events, but when it comes to severe stress, especially serious injuries, the death of a close family member or friend, sexual assault, living through a disaster, or witnessing a violent act such as a school shooting, children can often suffer the long-term effects of PTSD.
The National Center for PTSD estimates that 7-8% of people will experience PTSD during their lives. Worse yet, over 65% of children who are exposed to a traumatic event will, at some point, attempt to take their own lives.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the symptoms of PTSD are different for young children than those of older teens and adults. Children younger than 6 will often wet the bed, forget how or refuse to talk, act out the traumatic event during routine play, or become unusually clingy with a parent or other adult.

Research shows that depression rates increase after a trauma and tend to be especially high among children with PTSD. If your child or someone you love is struggling with depression or thinking about suicide, get help now. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 1-800-273-TALK (8255), is a free resource, available 24 hours a day for anyone who is in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. The Crisis Text Line is a free 24/7 text line where trained crisis counselors support individuals in crisis. Text “Jason” to 741741 to speak with a compassionate, trained Crisis Counselor. Confidential support 24/7, for free.

The Jason Foundation is another available resource.  The Jason Foundation is dedicated to the awareness and prevention of youth suicide through educational programs that equip youth, parents, educators, and the community with the tools and resources to identify and assist at-risk youth. Many times, a young person will exhibit clear warnings signs prior to an attempt. By knowing the warning signs, and knowing how to help, you could save a life.  Visit The Jason Foundation’s website to learn more about youth suicide, the warning signs, and how you can help make a difference.  The Jason Foundation has never charged a school, community, or individual for the use of their programs or resources.  http://www.jasonfoundation.com
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Emerson Hospital & IMPACT Melanoma Team Up to Protect the Public

CONCORD: Emerson Hospital and IMPACT Melanoma, a national non-profit organization dedicated to reducing the incidence of melanoma, have teamed for the third consecutive year to protect residents from skin cancer. The organizations have deployed touchless, automatic sunscreen dispensers at 16 high-traffic locations, including parks and recreation facilities, beaches, rail trails, and athletic fields throughout Concord and the greater area. The dispensers provide complementary sunscreen throughout Acton (at The Discovery Museum), Bedford, Chelmsford, Concord, Harvard, Hudson, Maynard and Westford.
Jen Melanson, Community Service Coordinator for the town of Chelmsford, reported after the 2020 season, “The program was so well received, we had positive feedback on social media and from citizens who were very excited and appreciative. We are grateful to Emerson Hospital for providing the dispensers and are excited to support the program again this year.”
 
“We are pleased to work with Emerson Hospital on this invaluable initiative for the third year,” said Deb Girard, IMPACT’s Executive Director. “It is imperative to educate communities at all levels – residents, government, employees, and visitors – to create a broad sense of sun-safe practices aimed at healthier lifestyle choices for our skin. With this initiative in motion, we can achieve exactly that with the fleet of free sunscreen dispensers, and educational messaging. We are excited and hope that neighboring towns take notice. Together we can make a great IMPACT and practice of safe skin.”
Emerson Hospital is sponsoring bright yellow sunscreen dispensers that are filled with SPF 30 sunscreen. The dispensers are monitored regularly and replenished as needed, ensuring that everyone in the area who needs sunscreen has easy access to it. SPF 30 or higher sunscreen is rated and recommended for use by children ages six-months and up, and adults. All sunscreen ingredients are safe and approved by the FDA.
 
“Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in our service area, according to our latest Community Health Assessment,” notes Christine Gallery, Senior Vice President, Planning and Chief Strategy Officer, Emerson Hospital. “We are proud to support IMPACT Melanoma again this year, so that people throughout our towns can have fun this summer, while easily protecting themselves from skin cancer. We anticipate the community will use the sunscreen often and it will become a routine part of their summer safety regimen. We encourage the community to be in touch with a physician with any questions or concerns about their skin.”
To learn more about the importance of sunscreen and where the complimentary sunscreen dispensers are located, please visit www.emersonhospital.org/sunscreen.