A Holiday Handbell Repertoire Reading Workshop 

ACTON: A Holiday Handbell Repertoire Reading Workshop will take place on Saturday, September 25 at Matthew’s United Methodist Church, 435 Central Street. This workshop is organized by the Directors of the  Lincoln Ringers, Marlboro Ringers, Sudbury Ringers, and Bells of St. Matthew’s. 

Registration will start at 8:30am with a brief and distanced socialization. Registration fee will be $10. The workshop will run from 9am - 12:30pm with a short break for fresh air. St. Matthew’s has a large open sanctuary that allows space to place tables at a safe distance, with many windows and fans to circulate the air. Banquets tables and card tables will be set up for ringer’s comfort safety.

Although there will be the 5 octave set of St. Matthew’s bells with 36 feet of table space set up, bells from the Marlboro Church,  one 2 octave set and one 3 octave set, people are invited to bring their own bells, pad(s), and music stand(s) to place on tables we will provide.  There will be a sales table for gloves, and to purchase some of the music after the workshop. 

For more information, please contact: Sue Lee (northacres67gmail.com) or 
Diane Burke (dpburke9@gmail.com).
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Maynard Sesquicentennial Parade to Celebrate 150 Years

MAYNARD: The Town of Maynard invites the Community to celebrate the Town’s 150th birthday at the Sesquicentennial Parade on Sunday, September 19. The parade will step off from the Mill & Main parking lot on Sudbury Street at 1pm, and will follow a 1.6 mile route through town bringing the celebration right through the heart of the Maynard community.

The Maynard Sesquicentennial Committee has been planning the parade, and other activities to celebrate the 150th anniversary year of Maynard in 2021, since 2017. Forty units have signed on to participate as units in the parade, including local community organizations, businesses, elected officials, dancers, costumed characters, musicians, scouts, homemade floats and marching bands.

Two residents, known for their years of work preserving the Town’s history, will serve as parade marshalls. Roy Helander and Paul Boothroyd are both long-time residents and are well known for their many contributions to Maynard. Boothroyd is the Town historian, Maynard historical Society’s archivist, and the author of several Maynard history books. Helander was President of the Historical society for many years. The son of immigrants from Finland, he was instrumental in translating works documenting the lives of Finnish immigrants who arrived in Maynard. Helander’s father participated in the Town’s 100th anniversary parade in 1971. 

For more information, visit the Sesquicentennial webpage at www.Maynard150.org.

Local Students Named to The Dean's List at MCPHS University

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ACTON/CONCORD: Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (MCPHS) is pleased to announce the students who have been named to the Dean's List for the Spring 2021 semester:

* Joelle Perron is a native of Acton and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Diagnostic Medical Sonography degree. Joelle will graduate from the Boston, Massachusetts campus in 2023.

* Maria Rofail is a native of Acton and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Predental-Dental Hygiene degree. Maria will graduate from the Boston, Massachusetts campus in 2022.

* Mahera Malek is a native of Concord and is pursuing a Doctor of Pharmacy degree. Mahera will graduate from the Boston, Massachusetts campus in 2025.

* Owen Haddadeen is a native of Concord and is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Premedical Health Studies degree. Owen will graduate from the Boston, Massachusetts campus in 2023.

The Dean's List recognizes those students with a full-time course load who have achieved outstanding scholarship with a 3.5 GPA or higher for the academic term.

The mission of MCPHS University is to prepare graduates to advance health and serve communities worldwide through excellence, innovation, and collaboration in teaching, practice, scholarship, and research. Founded in 1823, the University currently offers more than 100 unique baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degree programs and certificates covering a variety of health-related fields and professions.
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Quail Ridge Camera Club Hosts Photo Exhibit

ACTON: During the month of October, the Quail Ridge Camera Club will be  exhibiting photographs at the Acton Senior Center, 30 Sudbury Road.  The exhibit will include framed black and white and color  photographs of various sizes, all available for sale. An opening reception will be on Tuesday, October 5 from 2pm – 4pm.

During this Covid-19 period, the Camera Club is holding zoom meetings usually every other Wednesday evening at 7pm. There is  no competition at meetings. Rather, members provide constructive feedback. Photographs are presented on different themes  as well as teaching each other various technical aspects of photography, focusing on the use of Photoshop and Lightroom. Some recent themes  have included favorite photos, monuments, round things, and wide angle photos.

New members, ranging from beginners to “seasoned” photographers, living in Acton or any surrounding towns, are always welcome.  For more information, contact Paul Scopa at npscopa@gmail.com.

Mom to Mom Starting September 27 at Faith Church

ACTON: Mom to Mom, a mentoring group for moms by moms, will meet Monday mornings starting September 27. This session is from 9:30-11:30am at Faith Evangelical Free Church, 54 Hosmer Street.  Childcare will be offered for babies thru kindergarten.

There will be an Intergenerational Moms evening meeting on the 4th Monday of the month via Zoom.  These meetings are from 7:45-9:15pm and start on October 25.

Mom to Mom is a place where women can be educated, encouraged, and equipped for the most important job in the world—parenting. Through practical, faith-based teaching on parenting and supportive interaction in small groups led by mentor moms, we wish to foster growth not only in our parenting skills but in our wholeness as women—intellectually, relationally, and spiritually.

Childcare with age-appropriate programs for infants through kindergarten is provided for the moms who register for the morning session. Babes in arms are warmly welcomed to join their mothers during the meetings.

In September, the book Mom to Mom Heart Talk on What Really Matters by Linda Schultz Anderson will be discussed. Topics for the fall include: what is motherhood, trials of parenting, successful marriages, and maintaining a Christian home.

The fee for the morning session is $110 + a $15 book fee, $125 total. The Intergenerational Moms evening group is offered at no charge. To register for Mom to Mom or Intergenerational Moms, visit www.faithevfree.org/mom-to-mom.html.

Boxborough FreeBee Market to Celebrate Harvest Fair

BOXBOROUGH: What do you get when you combine a century-old agricultural fair with an innovative new community market where everything is free?  The September FreeBee Market! On Saturday, September 18, Boxborough’s FreeBee Market is back for its seventh market day since launching earlier this year, this time celebrating one of Boxborough’s oldest traditions: Harvest Fair. 

Alongside FreeBee’s usual offerings of gleaned and donated produce, meat, baked goods, and other items, visitors will also see the popular Harvest Fair apple cider-making station with hand-cranked cider press, as well as tractors from local farmers on the lawn for photo ops.  FreeBee also invites folks to bring their animal friends along for the traditional Harvest Fair “Blessing of the Animals” by Rev. Cindy Worthington-Berry of UCC Boxborough.  Music by the Nashoba Valley Concert Band will begin at 11am. 

The FreeBee project started back in May, when Fleming and a group of friends and neighbors in Boxborough learned about the “gleaning” movement – collecting or “gleaning” from grocery stores the produce and other foods that are near the end of their shelf lives and would otherwise go to waste.  The group was inspired to organize a community market to distribute food gleaned from the Acton Roche Brothers in order to combat local food insecurity and prevent waste.  In just a few months, FreeBee has become a busy twice-monthly Market with gleaned produce and meat from local grocery stores and farms, as well as garden produce, baked goods, flowers, seedlings, books, and arts, crafts and party supplies. Everyone is welcome to give, take, or both – and everything is always free.  

Celebrate Harvest Fair at the FreeBee Market Saturday, September 18 from 10:30am-12pm on the lawn at 30 Middle Road (across from Boxborough Town Hall). For more information, visit https://fb.me/e/1ivyHGDKh or https://sites.google.com/abuw.org/freebeemarket/faq

Sign Up Now for Acton Conservation Trust Community Service Day

ACTON: Acton Conservation Trust invites everyone to their upcoming fall Community Service Day, Sunday, October 3, 2021, 1-3pm. This year they will be working to remove bittersweet and other invasive plants from the beautiful Wright Hill Conservation Land property. There will be a brief orientation of what bittersweet looks like and how best to remove it. Please bring leather work gloves, clippers, bypass pruners and loppers if you have them. Some tools and loaner gloves will be available, as well as water and refreshments. If the day is clear, you may even be treated to a view of Mount Wachusett from the top of Wright Hill! To register, please contact Jody Harris at jharris.actonconservationtrust@gmail.com.

Look for The Friends of the Acton Libraries at Octoberfest

WEST ACTON: The Friends of the Acton Libraries will be one of the local community organizations taking part in the annual Octoberfest Celebration at Gardner Field on September 25 from 10am until 5pm. This is a great time for you to come by to say hi, learn about the mission of The Friends, and pick up a free book for kids or teens. It’s also the perfect opportunity to renew your membership to The Friends. 

Be sure you are up to date before the big Friends Used Book Sale. Yes - an actual, in person, all kinds of books, used book sale on October 23 at The Acton Memorial Library! As a member of The Friends, you will be invited to attend the preview night, October 22, the night before the sale. Friends get first crack at the great selection of used books at the sale. This is a huge benefit if you are looking for something special, or just enjoy being there when every single book is available.

The Friends of the Acton Libraries is a volunteer organization dedicated to funding the town's elementary, middle, and high school library budgets. We also provide support to the Acton Memorial Library and West Acton Citizens' Library for programming, museum passes and more.  The Friends additionally present scholarships each year to deserving high school seniors. For more information, contact The Friends at friendsofactonlibraries@gmail.com, or visit www.facebook.com/friendsactonlib, or follow them on Twitter at https://twitter.com/friendsactonlib and Instagram at www.instagram.com/friendsactonlib.

Discovery Museum Announces Two Public Events to Celebrate the Launch of New Exhibit Focused on Women in STEAM Careers

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ACTON: Who do you see when you picture a scientist? Do you see a stranger in a lab coat, or perhaps a family member, a friend, or a neighbor down the street? Do you see yourself when you picture a scientist? Discovery Museum’s newest exhibit, Picture Yourself: Women in STEAM, features portraits of local female scientists painted by local female artists, with panels that describe each scientist’s work, hobbies, backgrounds, and childhood interests. Displayed throughout the Museum, together the portraits depict a range of ethnicities, backgrounds, research areas, professions, interests, and childhood memories. Each scientist portrayed in the exhibit has completed the Discovery Museum Science & Engineering Communication Fellowship program, which trains local scientists and engineers to effectively communicate to the public about their work and research, culminating in a Meet the Scientists event at the Museum on a free-admission Friday night.

EVENT 1: September 29 from 6pm-7:30pm, presented Virtually via Zoom
Registration required: https://26033.blackbaudhosting.com/26033/Picture-Yourself-A-Virtual-Celebration-of-Women-in-STEAM or https://bit.ly/3DZFhVd

Listen in as a group of local scientists and artists talk about their work, research, and interests, and be inspired as you learn why they find science and art cool and exciting. They’ll answer your questions as they share what it’s like to be a scientist and artist. Your registration confirmation will include a short survey to provide your questions for the artists and scientists in advance—including whether you or your child would like to ask a question live during the event. This live, virtual event is for children, ages 7+ years, and their caregivers to enjoy together.

  • Professor Piali Sengupta – Sensory Neuroscientist, Professor of Biology, Brandeis University
  • Professor Maureen Ritchey – Cognitive Neuroscientist, Assistant Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience, Boston College
  • Dr. Suanna Selby Crowley – Geoarcheologist, Founder, HeadFort Consulting
  • Ellice Patterson, M.S. – Biologist, Founder/Artistic and Executive Director, Abilities Dance; Executive Director, BalletRox
  • Katie Runde – Contemporary realist painter, Bristol, Vermont

EVENT 2: October 2, 1pm–3pm, in person at 177 Main Street, Acton, MA
To attend: This event is during public hours at the Museum. Advanced reservations are required to visit the Museum and can be made 10 days in advance at www.discoveryacton.org.

Visit each of 6 portraits installed around the Museum and meet the local scientists and artists who are represented in the exhibit or who created these amazing works of art. Learn about their work, research, and interests, and discover why they find science and art cool and exciting. They’ll answer your questions as they share what it’s like to be a scientist or artist.

  • Professor Bulbul Chakraborty – Condensed Matter Theorist, Professor of Physics, Brandeis University (Pictured)
  • Professor Maureen Ritchey – Cognitive Neuroscientist, Assistant Professor of Psychology & Neuroscience, Boston College
  • Dr. Suanna Selby Crowley – Geoarcheologist, Founder, HeadFort Consulting
  • Ellice Patterson, M.S. – Biologist, Founder/Artistic and Executive Director, Abilities Dance; Executive Director, BalletRox
  • Wing Na Wong – Photorealist painter, Danbury, Connecticut

The exhibit is made possible in part by an IF/THEN® Gender Equity Grant, a program created through a partnership between the Association of Science and Technology Centers and IF/THEN®, an initiative of Lyda Hill Philanthropies. This is the second round of the grant program designed to support U.S.-based ASTC member museums as they embark on projects to increase the representation of women and gender minorities in STEM across museum content.

To learn more about the exhibit, visit https://www.discoveryacton.org/exhibit/picture-yourself-women-steam.

Free Playgroup for Multilingual Families

ACTON/BEDFORD: First Connections has openings in its Monday morning Language and Literacy Parent & Child Playgroup held outdoors in Acton from 10-11am. The group is appropriate for children aged 18 months to 5 years and will meet from September 20 to November 22. The group is facilitated by an early childhood educator who will read different versions of fairy tales and nursery rhymes, and will share traditional stories and rhymes from families' home languages and cultures. The group includes a circle time with songs and a story, and activities related to the week's story. Masks are required for ages 2 and older to allow children to interact safely. In case of rain the program will take place on Zoom. If you would like to participate in this group, please email your contact information, your child's first name and age, and the language other than or in addition to English that your family uses at home to lmatthews@jri.org. This program is also scheduled for Wednesdays, 2-3:00 in Bedford if that schedule is preferable.

Parents of One Year Olds Coping with Depression/Anxiety

ACTON: First Connections, through grants from The Nordblum Family Foundation and Sage Therapeutics, is expanding their Emotional Wellbeing After Baby weekly support group to include an 8-week group for parents of one year olds. The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly increased the rates and duration of anxiety and depression among parents of young children. We are providing additional support and strategies through a free, time-limited, virtual group facilitated by Heather O'brien, LICSW, who is also certified in parent-infant mental health. The group will be offered from September 9 thru October 28, 1:30-3pm on Thursdays. To participate in this group, or the group for parents of infants, email hobrien@jri.org for the connecting link. If you need assistance with finding a therapist, locating other support groups, or have questions about postpartum depression or anxiety, Heather can also help with these issues.

Maynard Emblem Club #205 Collecting for Annual Fundraiser

MAYNARD: Maynard Emblem Club #205 is holding their annual Savers Fundraiser. They are collecting used clothing, purses, shoes, accessories, backpacks, bedding, linens, curtains and other textiles such as decorative pillows. All money raised will be used to help local charities. Call Kim at 978-897-9907 or email kim.lalli@comcast.net to schedule drop-off or pick-up. Items will be collected through October 29.
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Ingathering Sunday & Water Ceremony at FPC

STOW/ACTON: September 12 is Ingathering Sunday, the service that marks the start of the church year at First Parish Church of Stow & Acton (FPC), Unitarian
Universalist (UU). This date will also mark the beginning of a new two-service structure, which will be used throughout September and re-assessed before being set for October. FPC will hold an outdoor service at 9:30am, weather permitting, which will not be accessible virtually.
Outside nursery care will be provided, again, weather permitting. To check on whether the service is taking place, follow http://facebook.com/fpcstowacton for the most up-to-date information.

A virtual service will be held at 11:15am. This service will include music from the choir, which will perform live from FPC’s Fellowship Hall, and will feature FPC’s new music director, Brad Dumont.

Says the Rev. Dr. Cynthia L. Landrum, minister at FPC, “Our church year begins with a service of both sorrow and joy. While it’s good to be together again, we’re also not coming back together just yet in the way we had hoped for in our sanctuary. While we start a new year, in the midst of the holiday of Rosh Hashanah, full of exciting programs and opportunities, we’re also in the midst of a pandemic and remembering the anniversary of the September 11th attacks. Come join us for this service full of peace like a river, love like an ocean, tears like raindrops, and joy like a fountain!”

The 11:15am service can be accessed by computer or phone. Access information, as well as a link to the order of service, will be posted along the left column at http://fpc-stow-acton.org within 24
hours of the service. To prevent disruptive intrusions, the virtual room will be locked about 15 minutes after the service begins.

For more information, call 978-897-8149 or visit http://fpc-stow-acton.org. FPC is located at 353 Great Road.
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Make a Difference Day at FPC

ACTON/STOW: If you or your children have ever wanted to make a difference in the world, Make a Difference Day will offer a chance to do so in a variety of areas, including climate change, LGBTQ+ rights, prison outreach, racial justice, and more. This family-friendly event takes place on September 11, from 10am to noon, on the grounds of First Parish Church of Stow & Acton, Unitarian Universalist, 353 Great Road., at the corner of routes 117. Masks are required.
Many booths will offer a variety of activities suitable for kids, teens, and adults. FPC’s Supporting Asylum Seekers Task Force’s booth, for instance, will include a globe to help kids locate countries, the opportunity to tweet President Biden, and the chance to write or draw a welcome letter to an Afghan family newly arrived in San Antonio (TX) or Charlottesville (VA), among other activities. The Climate Change Task Force’s activities will range from writing post cards to the governor and secretary of environment about implementing the state's new climate law; providing information on its Net Zero campaign for FPC; and making posters on climate change. This task force will also ring the church’s bells 11 times at 11am as part of 11th Hour Calling, an interfaith organization that calls attention to the urgency of the climate crisis on the 11th hour of the 11th day of each month.
In addition, executive director of UU Mass Action Laura Wagner will host a table with information available for its 5 Core Campaigns: Massachusetts Against Solitary Confinement; Indigenous Justice; Immigrant Justice; Environmental Justice and Climate; and Economic Justice.
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A/B United Way Turns 40!

ACTON/BOXBOROUGH: This fall, Acton-Boxborough United Way turns 40! In 1981, a group of visionary neighbors founded the Acton-Boxborough Community Chest to raise local dollars for local impact. Through thoughtful stewardship, the organization has grown and evolved. Thanks to your dedication, Acton-Boxborough United Way is a beacon of hope for many individuals and organizations in the community. Moving forward together we can achieve our vision of a community where everyone belongs and thrives.

On Friday, September 10th from 7-8:15pm, virtually join together to kick off a year of celebration. Keynote Speaker will be U.S. Rep. Lori Trahan and local community leaders will speak about the power of community. This interactive program will conclude with a toast to all of you who have helped build a caring community. Visit https://www.abuw.org/40th-anniversary-celebration-virtual-kick to register to receive your Zoom link.
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OARS Annual River Cleanup

It's OARS 35th Annual River Cleanup September 17-19. Join staff and volunteers as they spread out across the Sudbury, Assabet and Concord River Watershed to clean up our rivers, streams, ponds and trails. This year, to accommodate the comfort and needs of volunteers, there are two options.

Team Up Clean Up: During the weekend, gather family and friends for a walk or a paddle near or along the river, stream or pond. Pick up what trash and recycling you can and send OARS photos of your group cleaning up! People love to see what trash is no longer in our rivers.

Cleanup Day: Saturday, September 18, from 9am–noon. A team of volunteers will tackle sites in needing a larger group effort in towns including Framingham, Westborough, Hudson, Maynard, Concord and Billerica. The morning of hard work will be followed by a celebration with pizza. Registration is required. Details and registration information is available at www.oars3rivers.org

OARS is the watershed organization working to protect, improve, and preserve the Assabet, Sudbury, and Concord Rivers, their tributaries and watersheds for the purposes of public recreation, water supply, and wildlife habitat. 

Discovery Museum Announces Fall Speaker Series Lineup

ACTON: The Discovery Museum Acton's Fall Speaker Series Lineup features discussions on youth and climate, talking to kids about indigenous stereotypes, and empowering children with disabilities. First up is Youth Voices in Climate Change: A Conversation with Varshini Prakash (pictured), moderated by WBUR's Miriam Wasser. It will be held September 23, 7pm to 8:30pm. Prakash is the Executive Director and Co-Founder of Sunrise, a movement of young people working to stop climate change and create millions of good jobs in the process through the Green New Deal. Varshini has been a leading voice for young Americans, including when she helped lead a mass demonstration for the Green New Deal with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez that went viral and put the climate crisis at the top of the political agenda for the 2020 elections. Varshini's work has been featured in The New York Times, MSNBC, The New Yorker, BBC, The Washington Post and more. In 2019, she was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list for law and policy, and TIME 100 Next, a new list of rising stars who are shaping politics, popular culture, science, and more. Varshini currently lives in Boston, MA.
Talking to Kids About Stereotypes and Invisibility of Indigenous “Native Americans” will be presented by speaker Claudia Fox Tree, M.Ed., Professional Educator and Social Justice Activist, on Wednesday, October 6, 7pm to 8:30pm. Fox Tree facilitates courses and workshops on decolonizing teaching practices, including “un-erasing” Native American First Nations People (FNP). She gives voice to Indigenous experiences (past and present) and asks allies and co-conspirators to come on the journey with her. Her presentations feature discussions on identity, culture, contributions, stereotypes, and historical inaccuracies.
An Empowered Life for Children with Disabilities concludes the series with Sara Minkara, Founder of Empowerment Through Integration on Thursday, October 21, 7pm to 8:30pm. Minkara is an internationally recognized champion for inclusion, leadership, individual empowerment, and social enterprise. Sara speaks to diverse audiences around the world and facilitates transformative, interactive workshops that employ adaptive approaches to social and workplace challenges. As an undergraduate and dedicated to promoting inclusion as a value and guiding others on their own journeys, Sara founded a nonprofit organization, Empowerment Through Integration (ETI), Sara is part of the Board of Directors for ETI and continues to create new programs and opportunities for the children and families it serves. Sara currently is the Founder and CEO of Sara Minkara LLC, an organization that offers courses, workshops, executive coaching and engages in public speaking opportunities to continue to bring her leading voice in the fields of disability, inclusion, empowerment, and authentic leadership to society.
More information and registration links for each event can be found at http://bit.ly/DMSpeakerSeries; a $5 suggested donation is appreciated. These sessions are free and open-to-the-public.
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West Nile Virus Confirmed in Mosquitoes in a Neighboring Community

MAYNARD & SURROUNDING COMMUNITIES: The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) announced that West Nile virus (WNV) has been detected in mosquitoes collected from Maynard, Massachusetts. Heavy precipitation events have increased the main WNV vector species abundance statewide. Abundance levels for Culex WNV vector species are expected to continue to trend up in the coming weeks.
Measures to protect yourself and your family are provided below and the recommendation should be followed until the first hard frost.
WNV is most commonly transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. The mosquitoes that carry this virus are common throughout the state and are found in urban as well as more rural areas. While WNV can infect people of all ages, people over the age of 50 are at higher risk for severe infection. By taking a few, common sense precautions, people can help to protect themselves and their loved ones:
  • Avoid Mosquito Bites: Apply Insect Repellent when you go outdoors. Use a repellent with DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide), permethrin, picaridin (KBR 3023), IR3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus [p-methane 3, 8-diol (PMD)] according to the instructions on the product label. DEET products should not be used on infants under two months of age and should be used in concentrations of 30% or less on older children. Oil of lemon eucalyptus should not be used on children under three years of age. Permethrin products are intended for use on items such as clothing, shoes, bed nets and camping gear and should not be applied to skin.
  • Clothing Can Help reduce mosquito bites. Although it may be difficult to do when it’s hot, wearing long-sleeves, long pants and socks when outdoors will help keep mosquitoes away from your skin.
  • Be Aware of Peak Mosquito Hours - The hours from dusk to dawn are peak biting times for many mosquitoes. When risk is increased, consider rescheduling outdoor activities that occur during evening or early morning. If you are outdoors at any time and notice mosquitoes around you, take steps to avoid being bitten by moving indoors, covering up and/or wearing repellant.
  • Mosquito-Proof Your Home: Drain Standing Water – Many mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Limit the number of places around your home for mosquitoes to breed by either draining or getting rid of items that hold water. Check rain gutters and drains. Empty any unused flowerpots and wading pools and change water in birdbaths frequently.
  • Install or Repair Screens - Some mosquitoes like to come indoors. Keep them outside by having tightly-fitting screens on all your windows and doors.
Information about WNV and reports of current and historical WNV virus activity in Massachusetts can be found on the MDPH website at: www.mass.gov/dph/mosquito.

Poet Kiki Petrosino to Appear Online September 14

MAYNARD: The Friends of the Maynard Public Library and the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library are pleased to announce that Rilke-Prize-winning poet Kiki Petrosino will discuss and read from her fourth and latest book, White Blood, in a free online event on Tuesday, September 14, at 7:00 pm EDT. In White Blood, Petrosino turns her gaze to Virginia and digs into her genealogical and intellectual roots, while contemplating the legacies of slavery and discrimination. The poems grapple with such subjects as DNA test results and the complex history of Monticello.

In a starred review, Publishers Weekly called White Blood “an important and remarkable exploration of heritage” in which the poems “achieve brilliance.” Southern Review of Books calls Petrosino “a marvelous poet. No matter the form or subject matter, each poem demonstrates her mastery. White Blood is a timely reminder of the importance of acknowledging the past, whether so as not to repeat it, in some cases, or to celebrate those who came before.”

Kiki Petrosino is the author of White Blood: A Lyric of Virginia (2020) and three other poetry books. She holds graduate degrees from the University of Chicago and the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop. Her poems and essays have appeared in Prairie Schooner, Best American Poetry, The Nation, The New York Times, FENCE, Gulf Coast, jubilat, Tin House, and on-line at Ploughshares. She teaches at the University of Virginia as a Professor of Poetry. Petrosino is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize, a Fellowship in Creative Writing from the National Endowment for the Arts, an Al Smith Fellowship Award from the Kentucky Arts Council, and the UNT Rilke Prize.

Registration is required. Please visit https://www.maynardpubliclibrary.org/petrosino. For more information, contact Jean Maguire, Director, Maynard Public Library, jmaguire@minlib.net, 978-897-1010 x107.

Concord Piecemakers Guild Fiber, Yarn & Notions Sale

ACTON: The Concord Piecemakers Guild invites all quilters, crafters, knitters, and weavers to save the date of Saturday, November 6th for their renamed and rescheduled Fiber, Yarn and Notions sale, formerly known as the Yard Sale.

Mark your calendars and shop for beautiful fabric, yarn, roving, and notions at yard sale prices.  Guild members are working steadily to select and organize our contributions to this important fundraiser, our first since the pandemic began.  The FYN Sale is scheduled to take place on November 6 from 9am to 2pm at St. Matthew’s Church, 435 Central Street. Recommended COVID guidelines will be followed during this event.

The Concord Piecemakers Guild are a 501(c)(3) charitable organization serving Concord and the surrounding communities with members from all over the area and even as far as Maryland. As a non-profit organization, we are dedicated to preserving, promoting, and advancing the art of quilt making through educational programs, workshops, and outreach activities such as providing quilts for local hospitals, cancer treatment centers, shelters, and other community groups.  This fundraiser is key to aide them in those efforts.  Visit www.concordpiecemakers.org for more details.

Maynard Community Preservation Committee Seeking Proposals

MAYNARD:  The Maynard Community Preservation Committee is asking Maynard residents to submit  proposals for Community Preservation Act funding.  
The deadline for submitting preliminary applications is September 27, 2021. This entails a short  project description used to determine eligibility for CPA funds. 
Final applications are due on November 1, 2021 and must include detailed plans for the execution of the project, as well as a list of any additional funding sources and a maintenance  plan, where applicable. CPA funds can be used for four kinds of projects:  
  • Community housing projects that promote affordable housing.  
  • Historic preservation projects that protect, preserve or restore historic structures, sites or  artifacts.  
  • Open space projects that acquire land for open space, purchase conservation restrictions or  restore open space areas.  
  • Recreation projects that acquire, preserve, rehabilitate or convert structures and land to  recreational use.  

To date, Maynard CPA funds have been used to support the Maynard Affordable Housing Trust, the purchase of the Maynard Golf Course, support the design and acquisition of the Assabet River Rail  Trail, provide sprinkler systems to Alumni Field, improve the playgrounds at Fowler and Green Meadow  Schools, replace the fence and restore historic gravestones at Glenwood Cemetery, and preserve  historical artifacts, such as the Mill Curfew Bell, among other projects.  

Information and application forms are available on the Town of Maynard website at townofmaynard-ma.gov/gov/committees/cpc under the “Resources” section. Copies of the CPC booklets are available at the Town Clerk’s office, 195 Main St., or on the town website under “CPC.” You  may also contact the CPC administrative assistant, Anna-Lisa McLaughlin, at  
cpcadmin@townofmaynard.net with any questions. 

The Community Preservation Committee consists of nine town residents appointed by various  town boards and by the Maynard Select Board. The committee reviews applications, provides support  for the proponents of proposals, and determines which proposals to recommend for funding to the  Maynard Town Meeting.

NAMI Offers 9-Week "Family to Family" Mental Health Educational Program

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UPDATE: All programs, due to the increase in active Delta Covid transmissions and illness on the rise in MA, will be be conducted only on Zoom.

: Does a “Loved One” have Mental Health concerns? Mental health conditions touch one in five people, so it is likely a spouse, partner, child, parent, sibling or dear friend of yours may be living with a mental health condition. The National Alliance on Mental Illness, NAMI, is offering an eight week free family educational program called “Family to Family”. It is a designated evidence-based program taught by trained NAMI family member volunteers who have been there. Curriculum includes presentations, discussions, videos and interactive exercises.                                                                                

What will you gain? The class provides critical information and strategies for taking care of the person you love and you’ll also find - you are not alone! The group setting offers mutual support and shared positive impact – You will experience compassion and reinforcement from people who understand your situation. You can also help others through sharing your own experiences.    

You’ll learn about: Latest up-to-date information on mental health conditions and how they affect the brain ~ Current treatments; medications – their side effects and evidenced-based treatments and therapies ~ Local mental health services and supports ~ Managing crisis, solve problems and communicate effectively ~ The impact of mental illness on the entire family ~ Taking care of yourself and managing your stress. 

The program will be held IN-PERSON starting October 12 and November 30 from 6:30 -9PM. Proof of vaccination is required. To register contact Sara at 339-223-3146 or doddsara25@gmail.com  or Phyllis at 978-973-3995, Phyllis.terrey100@gmail.com. Additional course offerings and info at www.namimass.org.

Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club Hosts Annual Open House to Welcome New Members

Celebrating more than 50 years of community building, the Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club will host its’ Annual Open House to welcome new members, reconnect with established members, and to introduce an exciting line-up of events and activities for the 2021-2022 membership year.  The Open House is being held from 5pm to 7pm on September 12 at The Red Raven Gastropub in Acton, MA.  Club members and guests interested in learning more about the Club are invited to this affair for neighborly conversation and enjoyment of complimentary, notably distinctive appetizers and a cash bar.

The Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club is excited to invite community members to join us in a variety of activities including Adventure Group, Game Night, Men’s Night Out, Ladies’ Night Out, Book Group, Wine Tasting, Lunch Bunch, dining in and out events, and special events to start and finish the membership year.  

Visit the Club’s website at www.nashobavalleyneighbors.org for more information on this and other events, as well as information on how to become a member of the Nashoba Valley Neighbors.

The Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club is a non-profit social organization open to new and established residents from its communities.  Celebrating their 50th Anniversary in 2015, they were originally known as the Welcome Wagon Newcomers Club of Acton. More recently, they have been known as the Acton-Boxborough Newcomers & Neighbors Club.  Discovering that established residents in our surrounding communities are also looking to explore new interests and to make connections with new friends, they became the Nashoba Valley Neighbors Club in 2014.

VENDORS WANTED for West Acton Oktoberfest!

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 10 to 3, (with a rain date of October 2).

This is a hugely popular, well attended, community-wide event, with prior attendance in the thousands, 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. Please also see http://www.westactonvillage.org.
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Mom to Mom Group Begins September 27

ACTON: Mom to Mom, a mentoring group for moms by moms, will meet Monday mornings starting September 27 from 9:30-11:30am at Faith Evangelical Free Church, 54 Hosmer Street. Childcare will be offered for babies thru kindergarten.
There is an Intergenerational Moms EVENING meeting on the 4th Monday of the month via Zoom. These meetings are from 7:45-9:15pm and start on October 25.
You are invited! Mom to Mom is a place where women can be educated, encouraged, and equipped for the most important job in the world—parenting. Through practical, faith-based teaching on parenting and supportive interaction in small groups led by mentor moms, we wish to foster growth not only in our parenting skills but in our wholeness as women—intellectually, relationally, and spiritually.
Childcare with age-appropriate programs for infants through kindergarten is provided for the moms who register for the morning session. Babes in arms are warmly welcomed to join their mothers during the meetings.
Each Mom to Mom meeting includes a lecture or presentation on a topic pertinent to our lives as moms, followed by small group discussion with a mentor mom. In September they will start the book "Mom to Mom Heart Talk on What Really Matters" by Linda Schultz Anderson. Topics for the fall include: what is motherhood, trials of parenting, successful marriages, and maintaining a Christian home.
The fee for the morning session is $110 + a $15 book fee, $125 total. The Intergenerational Moms evening group is offered at no charge. To register for Mom to Mom or Intergenerational Moms, please visit www.faithevfree.org/mom-to-mom.html.

Rotary Benefit "Service Above Self" at Quail Ridge

ACTON: The Rotary Club of Acton-Boxborough tees up this Wednesday at 9am at Quail Ridge Country Club to benefit Rotary "Service Above Self" Projects locally - and beyond.  You're invited to their 29th Annual Presidents Golf Tournament. Registration and a continental breakfast are from 8am to 9am, with a shotgun start - and scramble scoring - at 9am.The fee is $100 per player, and includes nine holes, a golf cart, coffee, breakfast, and lunch. Prizes are:
  • Hole-in-one on any par 3.
  • Team with low gross.
  • Closest to the pin/line.
  • Great raffle prizes.

To complete and submit the online Player Registration Form, visit tinyurl.com/yjumecwu.
To learn more on the following:
For more event information, contact Co-chair Marvin Gould at 978-758-0362 or marvingould@comcast.net, and Co-chair Marc Duci at 978-758-1040 or marc.duci@actontv.org.

Boxborough Archeology Through Photography

BOXBOROUGH: The Boxborough Historical Society is proud to present "Boxborough Archeology Through Photography" on display in the meeting room at the Sargent Memorial Library, 427 Massachusetts Avenue, during the month of September featuring photographs by Arden Veley of the Society.  The archeological remains in Boxborough, spanning over 250 years, are many and varied: colonial cellar holes, stone bridges, foundations of old barns and ice houses, rusting farm machinery, early cars decomposing in the woods, farmers' trash heaps, old mill sites, museum artifacts, colonial cemeteries, hand dug stone lined wells, quarries, railroad underpasses as well as barns and houses from the late sixteen hundreds to the mid eighteen hundreds. This photographic exhibit will bring back to life what time has hidden.

This exhibit is supported in part by a grant from the Acton Boxborough Cultural Council,  a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

Dangerous Heat Advisory Continues!

The National Weather Service (NWS) is forecasting a potential period of prolonged oppressive heat through Friday (8/13) in most of the Commonwealth. During this period, daytime temperature highs will be 90-99 degrees. Heat index (Apparent Temperature) values will be 95-110 degrees. Scattered showers/thunderstorms are possible in the afternoons, with the potential for a few strong to severe thunderstorms late Thursday. There is a low probability that the heat wave could continue through Saturday.
Impacts/ Potential Impacts:
- Very hot temperatures with moderate humidity. Little relief at night especially in urban population centers.
- Potential of heat related issues to at risk population and those doing higher levels of outdoor physical activities.
- Damaging straight line winds and localized street flooding are possible on Thursday in areas where severe thunderstorms occur.
Preparedness and Safety Information:
- Safety and preparedness tips for extreme heat: www.mass.gov/mema/heat
- Never leave children or pets alone in a closed vehicle. Even with the windows cracked open, interior temperatures can rise almost 20°F within 10 minutes.
- Check with your local officials to find locations of cooling centers near you.
- Know the symptoms of and watch out for heat-related illnesses like heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. Call 9-1-1 to report emergencies.
- Be a good neighbor. Check on family, friends, and neighbors, especially the elderly, those who live alone, those with medical conditions, those who may need additional assistance, and those who may not have air conditioning.
Power outage preparedness and safety information: www.mass.gov/info-details/power-outage-safety-tips
Preparedness and safety tips for thunderstorms and lightning:
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Join the Maynard Folds Virtual Origami Exhibition Contest

MAYNARD: Be an origami museum exhibitor in The Origami Museum, founded and led by artist and teacher, Lisa B. Corfman.  Corfman announces Maynard Folds, a virtual origami exhibition contest – come exhibit in the upcoming Origami Museum Community Gallery. The origami museum welcomes EVERYONE to submit from children and adults, and from novices to experts to be in the spotlight.

Entries can be anything you can do, neatly folded, nicely presented (with fitting paper used, etc.), without cutting, gluing, or drawing on the model.  Just share something you are happy with for fame in the origami museum’s online gallery.  Don’t fret, just enjoy and do your best.  Origami can be simple, fun, or even amazing.  A personal note with questions, comments or concern is always welcome.

All contestants who submit will exhibit within the origami museum website, receive a certificate of participation, have a mention on Instagram and Facebook and receive a selection of origami paper.  Awards for one top child and one adult winner features a certificate of honor, a solo Instagram and Facebook post and an online membership to OrigamiUSA.

There are three jurors and the just listed prizes.  Jurors are Ruthanne Bessman, Susan Dugan and Lisa B. Corfman.  Bessman is a long-term curator of origami exhibitions and contests.  Dugan is a 40-year veteran of origami and is a photography professor.  Corfman makes, sells, teaches, and showcases origami inspired art and she is bringing this opportunity to you!

There are the two categories for origami model submissions: under 18 and adults.  Eligible contestants are within a 20-mile radius from Maynard, whether home, work, or school.  Here are the towns in this eligible catchment area:

Acton | Ashland | Arlington| Ayer | Bedford | Belmont | Berlin | Billerica | Bolton | Boxborough | Boylston | Carlisle | Chelmsford | Clinton | Concord | Devens |Dover | Framingham | Groton | Hanscom AFB| Harvard | Hudson | Lancaster | Lexington | Lincoln | Littleton | Marlborough | Maynard | Natick | Northborough | Sherborn | Shirley | South Lancaster | Southborough | Sterling | Still River | Stow | Sudbury | Waltham | Watertown | Wayland | Wellesley | Westford | Weston

The juried contest is sponsored by the Maynard Cultural Council and OrigamiUSA.  The goal is to increase folds!

Find out more at: https://origamimuseum.org/opportunities/. Maynard Folds information, statement about the jurors, and the application can be found there.

Help For Families: Mental Health Challenges

UPDATE: All programs, due to the increase in active Delta Covid transmissions and illness on the rise in MA, will be be conducted only on Zoom.

Mental illness touches one in five people. It is likely a spouse, partner, child, sibling, parent or dear friend of yours may be living with a mental health condition. The National Alliance on Mental Illness, NAMI is offering a FREE 8 session family educational program called “Family to Family”. It is a designated evidenced-based program. The program is taught by NAMI trained family member volunteers who have been there - and includes presentations, discussion, and interactive exercises.

What will you gain? The class provides critical information and strategies for taking care of the person you love, and you’ll also find out – you are not alone! The group setting provides mutual support and shared positive impact – you will experience compassion and reinforcement from people who understand your situation. You can also help others through your own experiences.

You’ll learn about: The latest up-to-date information on mental health conditions and how they impact the brain. Current treatments: Medications - their therapeutic use and side effects, current treatments and therapies. Local mental health services and supports. Managing crisis, problem solving techniques and effective communication. The emotional impact of mental illness on the entire family. Taking care of yourself and managing your stress.

Two Programs are sponsored by NAMI Central Middlesex for fall 2021.  Thursdays via ZOOM, Sept 16 – Nov 4th, 6:30 – 9:00 PM. To register contact Steve at 978-621-3253, shadden@hadlorgroup.com or Lindsay at 781-864-7003, linzbfar@gmail.com. Tuesdays IN PERSON in Littleton MA Oct 12th – Nov 30th, 6:30 – 9:00 PM. proof of vaccination is required. To register, contact Sara at 339-223-3146, doddsara25@gmail.com or Phyllis at 978.973.3995, phyllis.terrey100@gmail.com.

Broadway Comes to Maynard for Free Summer Concert

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

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.

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.

8/12/21: A Note from John Fallon:
"Due to the recent rise in the number of new Covid-19 cases, positive test cases, and hospitalization rates in Massachusetts, and the uncertainty this presents in the weeks to come, the Boxborough Minuteman have decided out of an abundance of caution for public health and safety to cancel Fifer’s Day which was planned for September 11th.  We very much look forward to seeing you next year as we plan for Fifer’s Day to return to its traditional summer schedule in June 2022!"

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!

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.

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.

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).

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.

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.

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

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

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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!

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.