May 4 - Vaccination progress by age group

Above: There has been marked progress in getting Southborough residents vaccinated. (click to enlarge)

Last night, Mass Pubic Health released its weekly reports by Town. There was continued progress in Southborough’s population getting vaccinated.

With 16 cases in two weeks, our risk classification was kept at yellow. But looking at the Town’s data as of yesterday morning, there were only 9 cases confirmed in the prior 6 days and none since Monday.

The Town’s cumulative total over the course of the pandemic remains at 499 cases. The number of active cases dropped from 46 to 35. (For details, click on graphs below.) 
May 6 - tracking Covid in Southborough May 6 - Confirmed per Day in Southborough over 14 days May 6 - Cumulative total Covid in SouthboroughMay 3 - Covid by ages in SouthboroughMay 3 - Covid by ages in Southborough over time

May 1 - Southborough Testing and Positivity RatesThe state lists our Average Daily Incidence Rate per 100,000 as 11.8 (lower than prior period) and the % of tests confirmed positive as 0.78% (<0.10% difference from prior report). Those figures are based on tests taken in the 14 days ending last Saturday. See my tracking of the testing & positivity rates right.

This week, the state lowered Northborough’s risk to low/green and kept all of our other immediate neighbors in yellow (Marlborough,  Westborough, Hopkinton, Framingham, and Ashland). Circling one more level out, most of our secondary neighbors are low risk (green or gray) except for three yellow communities (Holliston, Hudson, and Milford).

As for vaccinations, as of this Tuesday 6,873 Southborough residents had received shots. That means 71% of our Town is at least partially vaccinated.

88% of residents 20+ are at least partially vaccinated. 65% of ages 50+ are fully vaccinated. 

There is one area where progress hasn’t been shown in the past month. By April 6th, 88% of residents 75 years old and up were at least partially vaccinated. As of this week, 11% are still not documented* as having received vacccines.

More highlights by age group and gender are in charts below:
May 4 - Residents vaccinated by age May 4 - Vaccinations-table May 4 - Vaccination progress by age group

(For more details on those groups, plus race/ethnicity, click here.)

 

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Post image for Talking about Mental Health Services and Suicide Prevention

Above: SYFS is encouraging struggling residents to check out their Coffee Talks about Mental Health Services (for emergencies and for avoiding emergencies) and Suicide Prevention. (images cropped/edited from flyers)

Southborough Youth and Family Services is using Coffee Talk to reach out to any readers who need help.

You aren’t alone.

SYFS’ Director Sarah Cassell tells me the agency has been seeing a lot of mental health emergencies popping up.

She asked me to share relevant episodes of their regular Coffee Talk along with some other details and links. The specific focuses are suicide prevention and what to expect with accessing services for mental health (for emergencies and for avoiding emergencies).

Suicide Prevention (click here to watch)

In the suicide prevention episode, we reference a couple of trainings that we encourage viewers to take. I have included links to those trainings below. Mental Health First Aid is a lengthier training and includes information about common mental health diagnoses as well as information on suicide prevention whereas QPR focuses solely on suicide prevention. Like CPR, the more people in our community that are trained in suicide prevention, the more likely someone experiencing an emergency will receive potentially life saving measures. It’s also critical that we all learn the signs of suicidality and what to do. As family members, friends, and colleagues, we are more likely to be the first person to notice early warning signs.

Suicide Prevention Trainings

Accessing Emergency Mental Health Services (click here to watch)

On the episode about accessing emergency mental health services, we reference mobile crisis intervention, specifically Psychiatric Emergency Services (PES) through Advocates which covers the Southborough Community. I have provided the phone number for PES below. Prior to the pandemic, the emergency mental health system was experiencing strain and COVID has made that worse with decreased capacity and higher levels of need. It does appear that some capacity restrictions are decreasing but families may still experience challenges. We do not want to deter families and individuals from seeking the emergency care that they need but we do want to prepare them for what to expect.

Psychiatric Emergency Services
(800) 640-5432

Follow Up Episodes on Mental Health Services:

Children’s Behavioral Health Initiative (CBHI) (click here to watch)

This episode talks about some services that families can access to avert getting to the place of needing emergency services.

Interface Referral Service (click here to watch)

This episode talks about the new service available to the town that assists residents with finding a mental health provider.

The outreach isn’t directly related to Mental Health Awareness Month. However, SYFS has been conducting a lot of MHAM outreach in an effort to destigmatize seeking help.

As I previously shared, you can watch their MHAM focused Coffee Talk here.

You can also watch any of their over Coffee Talks on their Facebook page or on the SAM YouTube page.

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Post image for Crafting over zoom and Crafternoons outdoors: Gnome Desk Buddies and more

Above: Children ages 8+ can enjoy more free crafting events this spring and summer, starting with one last zoom session before gatherings are held outdoors. (image edited from Library flyer)

The Southborough Library is holding more crafting events for tweens and teens. The exciting news is that some of the upcoming sessions are in person.

Crafternoon Gnome Desk BuddiesOne last session for crafting over zoom is scheduled for next week, Wednesday, May 12 at 4:00 pm. The theme is Gnome Desk Buddies:

Join in the crafting fun on Zoom by creating your own Gnome, which can hang out on your desk or next to your bed! This craft involves some cutting and gluing, so please bring your scissors. Materials will be available by curbside pickup at the library.
Please register: http://bit.ly/sblib47. For ages 8+

The craft will be led by Mandy Roberge. The popular crafter used to lead occasional “Crafternoons” at the Library. That series is back coming back with gatherings planned for the Library lawn.

Join the Southborough Public Library in this series of fun and unique craft projects! These afternoon activities are held outdoors with distancing precautions in place. Registration is required!

One session will be held each month this summer on a Wednesday afternoon:

Henna Tattoos – June 30 (5:00 – 6:00 pm)

Crafter and henna artist Mandy Roberge will bring her skills to create an intricate henna design on your hand or arm! Choose from a variety of patterns and designs. Covid safe procedures will be in place.

Dog Treats and Catnip Mice – July 21 (4:00 – 5:00 pm)

Using oat flour, pumpkin puree, and honey, along with other ingredients, participants will make dog bones with cookie cutters. Following that, students will sew catnip mice! 

Book Bags – August 11 (4:00 – 5:00 pm)

This workshop will use basic sewing skills to make a book bag that participants can use for the library or school. Fun fabrics will be provided and the simple design is one that kids can try again at home!

To register, for any of the in-person sessions, click here. The outdoor gatherings are sponsored by the Friends of the Southborough Library. 

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Post image for Open discussion thread: Ask questions, share opinions

It’s time for another open thread. What’s on your mind this week, Southborough?

For those of you new to the blog, the open discussion thread is your place to ask questions, sound off on town issues, or share information with other readers. Here are some suggestions to get you started:

  • Ask questions about programs in town or the town itself
  • Post a note about things that you’re selling or giving away, or things that you want
  • Share notices about upcoming events (Southborough or otherwise)
  • Register your thoughts on town issues or news stories
  • Point out interesting or helpful resources

You can add comments to the thread throughout the week. Check back often to see new comments. (If you read the blog via email or RSS, you might want to check the site from time to time for new comments.)

To view past open discussion threads, click here.

(photo by Susan Fitzgerald)

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Post image for On the market this week in Southborough

Above: This home at 14 High Street went on the market this week for $725,000 (MLS photo)

Here’s what went on and off the market this week. Thanks to Gail DuBois (email) of Keller Williams for supplying the town’s new listing information for the week.*

New on the market

Sale pending

  • 8 Cain Circle, Unit 8 (map) – 6 room, 2 bed 2f 1h bath Half-Duplex – 28 days on the Market, Listed at $674,900
  • 164 Main Street (map) – 9 room, 4 bed 2f 1h bath Colonial – 10 days on the Market, Listed at $749,000
  • 3 Granuaile Road (map) – 8 room, 4 bed 2f 1h bath Colonial – 1 days on the Market, Listed at $775,000
  • 62 Pine Hill Road (map) – 9 room, 4 bed 2f 1h bath Colonial – 20 days on the Market, Listed at $879,000
  • 5 Stockwell Lane (map) – 10 room, 4 bed, 3f 1h bath Colonial – 6 days on the Market, Listed at $889,500
  • 3 Devine Lane (map) – 12 room, 4 bed, 2f 1h bath Other (See Remark… – 11 days on the Market, Listed at $1,150,000
  • Lot 1 Fisher Road (map) – 12 room, 5 bed, 2f 2h bath Colonial – 5 days on the Market, Listed at $1,150,000
  • 5 Wells Lane (map) – 11 room, 4 bed, 5f 0h bath Colonial – 204 days on the Market, Listed at $1,350,000
  • 48 Sears Road (map) – 12 room, 4 bed, 4f 2h bath Colonial – 1 days on the Market, Listed at $1,850,000

[click to keep reading…]

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Post image for Town Survey: Carve out some time to help make a BetterSboro

Above: Residents are being asked to head to BetterSboro.org to let Town officials know about their priorities, concerns, and what they want to see improved in Town services and governance.

The Town is asking residents to complete a survey. Unlike past surveys, this one isn’t focused on a specific service or need. It was designed to give officials a deeper understanding of residents’ priorities and concerns across the board.

This survey has been put together by various town departments to collect your feedback to improve the town.

Completing the full survey will take 20-30 minutes.  If you have more limited time, you may skip sections that are of lesser interest to you.

Your responses are anonymous. Please encourage your friends and neighbors in Southborough to complete this year’s Survey!

The town-wide survey is the brainchild of the Municipal Technology Committee. They hope to solicit feedback from residents on an annual basis. Information collected will help officials determine priorities for services, resources, needed improvements, etc.

I know that a lot of work and outreach went into creating the survey, and I encourage readers to take the time to weigh in.

You can find the survey at BetterSboro.org.

If you want a preview of what you’ll be asked, questions include, but aren’t limited to:

  • satisfaction with aspects of living, working, and raising kids in town
  • overall satisfaction with Town departments/services
  • opinions on Town leadership
  • more detailed opinions about specific depts, areas of service, and infrastructure
  • priorities and opportunities to comment

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Candidate’s Letter: Michael Weishan for Board of Selectman

May 6, 2021 07:39:47 AM
Thumbnail image for Candidate’s Letter: Michael Weishan for Board of Selectman

This spring, residents will choose from two candidates running for one seat on the Board of Selectmen. To help you make that decision, I have invited each to submit a letter to readers.

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Covid Clinic Update: Walk-in appointments available Thurs & Fri; More appointment opportunities (Updated)

May 5, 2021 04:01:14 PM
Thumbnail image for Covid Clinic Update: Walk-in appointments available Thurs & Fri; More appointment opportunities (Updated)

Southborough Public Health asked me to alert residents about some important new opportunities at the local Covid-19 Vaccine Clinic.

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Town Meeting: Fire Department seeking “Water Tender” tanker – for “off hydrant” areas of Town (Updated)

May 5, 2021 03:43:02 PM
Thumbnail image for Town Meeting: Fire Department seeking “Water Tender” tanker – for “off hydrant” areas of Town (Updated)

Through the Annual Town Meeting this month, the Southborough Fire Department is seeking a 2,000 gallon “Fire Tender”. The Fire Chief asked if I could share information on the request with readers.

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SYFS Neighborhood Happiness Project: Spread some cheer this May

May 5, 2021 12:25:38 PM
Thumbnail image for SYFS Neighborhood Happiness Project: Spread some cheer this May

Southborough Youth & Family Services is asking the community to help spread joy this month.

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Regional School Committee Election: Meet the Candidates video & statements

May 5, 2021 09:21:54 AM
Thumbnail image for Regional School Committee Election: Meet the Candidates video & statements

Yesterday, the Southborough Library posted its companion video to last week’s Meet the Candidates night. This one focused on candidates for the Northborough-Southborough Regional School Committee.

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SYFS invites public to read/discuss The Happiness Project

May 4, 2021 04:55:47 PM
Thumbnail image for SYFS invites public to read/discuss The Happiness Project

Southborough Youth and Family Services is trying to bring some happiness to the community for Mental Health Awareness Month.

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Peninsula Trail Project Overview and Listening Session – Thursday

May 4, 2021 02:20:01 PM
Thumbnail image for Peninsula Trail Project Overview and Listening Session – Thursday

The Trails Committee is holding a session to pitch it’s Town Meeting Article to close the last big gap in Southborough’s trail system.

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Pre-Annual Town Meeting tonight

May 4, 2021 11:24:58 AM

The Town posted an announcement to its website this morning. According to the ad, the Town Moderator will be holding his “Pre-Town Meeting” tonight – Tuesday, May 4th.

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