Post image for EEE Alert: All outdoor evening activities should be halted until further notice

Last week, I shared that Southborough’s risk threat level for EEE had been raised to moderate. Today, the state Department of Health classified our community as having an active threat. It advises that evening activities should be kept indoors:

*ADVISORY* As of 8/16/19, Southborough has been classified as an “active threat” community for eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH). A person tested positive in Grafton. All evening outdoor activities should be canceled until advised by DPH or after the first hard frost. For more info: https://www.mass.gov/service-details/eee-eastern-equine-encephalitis.

The town will post/distribute more information and guidance in the coming days.

That doesn’t look promising for Southborough Summer Nights. But I don’t have official word on that yet.

(I can tell you that the Summer Concert on Wednesday night was well attended by mosquitoes.)

(image from Central MA Mosquito Control Project’s Facebook page)

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16th Annual Summer Nights on August 24

by beth on August 16, 2019

Post image for 16th Annual Summer Nights on August 24

Above: Free pony rides and inflatables are just part of the fun for families at the evening festival. (photo by Beth Melo)

It’s less than ten days until the big end of the summer bash. Southborough Summer Nights will be on Saturday, August 24th. (Or the next day if the weather doesn’t cooperate.)

As usual, the festivities kick off at 5:00 pm and end with the big annual fireworks display after sunset.

For many, a big draw is the multitude of food trucks and exhibitor giveaways. You can also enjoy a live concert with returning favorites Better Her Than Me.

summer nights 2019 flyerBut the biggest draw is all the free activities for kids.

That includes:

  • Pony rides
  • Face Painting (by professionals)
  • Rock Climbing Wall
  • Inflatable Moon Bounces and obstacle courses
  • 3-hole mini golf
  • Photo Booth
  • Ball tosses, frisbee throws and shootouts
  • Balloon Artist

The ARHS Robotics team will also be on the tennis courts again with their robot demos.

I was also happy to learn that the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge fundraiser added last year will be back. (I’m hoping to share this year’s details next week. Stay tuned.)

Here are some pictures from last year, a mix of mine and contributions from Southborough Recreation. (Click on photos for credits)

Summer Nights Large Banner (by Southborough Rec) Rock Wall at Summer Nights (by Southborough Rec) Band BH at Summer Nights (by Southborough Rec)TM Obstacle Course at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo) Inflatable Ice Cream shop at Summer Nights (by Southborough Rec)

ball games at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo) ALS Ice Bucket Challenge at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo) ALS Ice Bucket Challenge success at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo) Summer Nights free pony rides (by Beth Melo)

ARHS Robotics at Summer Nights (by Southborough Rec) ARHS Robotics at Summer Nights 2 (by Beth Melo) Summer Nights 3-hole mini golf (by Beth Melo) picnic on the field at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo) Fireworks at Summer Nights (by Beth Melo)

Baypath and face painting at Summer Nights from FacebookSomehow, I didn’t capture any of the face painting last year. That is always a huge hit. I did find an example on Facebook from Baypath Humane Society’s post. (How many pups are in this pic?)

I will be sharing parking details closer to the event. But I’m told that it should be the same as last year.

Want to help make this year’s event another success?

Earlier this summer, I shared a request by Rec for volunteers to assist with setup. I’d be surprised if they couldn’t still use more help. If you’d like to lend a hand, click here for more details.

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Post image for Southborough’s Matt Walsh named National Merit Scholar

Above: St. Mark’s School recognized the Southborough student’s accomplishment this spring. (image from Facebook)

Last week, The National Merit Scholarship issued the announcement that a Southborough resident received a high honor. Matthew Walsh, who just graduated from St. Mark’s High School, received a $2,500 scholarship.

What makes the recognition especially sweet, beyond the check it comes with, is the high bar required to get it. Walsh was one of a small percent to be named a Merit Scholar®.

While the press release went out this month, the school got the news in May. At that time the school posted to its website:

Matthew Walsh ’19, a day student from Southborough, was named a National Merit Scholar. Head of School John C. Warren ’74 announced the honor at school meeting on May 15.

1.6 million high school students nationwide are candidates in the National Merit Scholarship program, but just one half of one percent of that number earn National Merit Scholar recognition and receive scholarship funding.

Congratulations, Matt, on an outstanding achievement.

The program’s press release explains:

Recipients of National Merit $2500 Scholarships were selected by a committee of college admission officers and high school counselors who appraised a substantial amount of information submitted by Finalists and their schools. Evaluated were each Finalist’s academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned, contributions and leadership in school and community activities, an essay written by the Finalist, and the recommendation written by a high school official.

This year’s competition for National Merit Scholarships began in October 2017 when over 1.6 million juniors in approximately 22,000 U.S. high schools took the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

Last fall, the highest-scoring participants in each state, representing less than one percent of the state’s seniors, were named Semifinalists on a state-representational basis. Only these 16,000 Semifinalists had an opportunity to continue in the competition.

Approximately 90 percent of the Semifinalists met the very high academic standards and other requirements to advance to the Finalist level. By the conclusion of the 2019 competition, more than half of the 15,000 Finalists will be Merit Scholarship winners, earning the Merit Scholar® title.

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Where you can still pick summer fruit

by beth on August 16, 2019

Post image for Where you can still pick summer fruit

Above: It’s the tail end of blueberry picking season and the start of peach season in our area. (photos posted to flickr left by Carrie Stephens and right by m10299)

I waited so long again this summer to post about pick-your-own fruit that there’s not much time left to gather your blueberries. (And forget about strawberries – that season is well past. )

My family has traditionally enjoyed fruit picking at Tougas Family Farm in Northborough. In addition to spring-fall pick your own fruits, they have a great playground and lots of goats to entertain the kids. 

As with most orchards, you need to check daily on their picking conditions. Today, they are advertising PYO blueberries – but they are reaching the end. They also have open picking for blackberries and donut peaches. Other varieties of peaches and nectarines should be coming soon, followed by apples and pumpkins as we head into fall.

If you don’t want to wait for nectarines and early season apples, you can head to Belkin Farm in Framingham. Other fruits that should be upcoming – peaches, plums, fall apples, asian pears, and pumpkins.

If you are looking for raspberries, you’ll want to head to Nourse Farm in Westborough. When conditions are right, they should have blackberries, and eventually, pumpkins.

Share your favorites and why you love them in the comments.

And if you’re looking for other fun things to do in Southborough and nearby, click the tag links below.

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Post image for Trailblazers celebrate 4 years bringing fun to active seniors in Southborough

Above: Southborough’s Trailblazers held a party last week to celebrate their 4th anniversary. (images cropped from contributed photos)

The Southborough Senior Center was happy to share photos from a party it hosted last week. The celebration commemorated four years of active Southborough senior volunteers planning fun activities for themselves and others. Here are some photos of the fun:

Trailblazers anniversary party (contributed photo) Trailblazers anniversary party (cropped from contributed photo) Trailblazers anniversary party (cropped from contributed photo) Trailblazers anniversary party (cropped from contributed photo) 

The Southborough Trailblazers have organized outings and trips that include activities like sightseeing, hiking, biking, bowling, horseback riding, and snowshoeing. Earlier this year, in very different weather, a celebration included a sleigh ride in the snow and singing around a campfire:

horse drawn sleigh - Trailblazers (cropped from contributed photo) winter campfire (cropped from contributed photo)

You can view more photos from that event on Facebook.

For more information on the Trailblazers, check out last year’s post about the group’s national recognition.

Their most recent flyer with information on how to get involved is here. For details on their upcoming fall events, stay tuned.

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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 of Trottier campus fields by Beth Melo)

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On the market this week in Southborough

August 15, 2019 01:18:41 PM
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What went on and off the market this week.

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Public Safety Opening Ceremony moved to September 9th

August 15, 2019 10:22:06 AM
Thumbnail image for Public Safety Opening Ceremony moved to September 9th

This morning, the Town announced that the Opening Ceremony has been rescheduled to be separate from the 9/11 ceremony.

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Public Safety Building Update: Certificate of Occupancy granted; Ceremony 9/9; Tours 10/26 (Updated – again)

August 14, 2019 11:07:52 AM
Thumbnail image for Public Safety Building Update: Certificate of Occupancy granted; Ceremony 9/9; Tours 10/26 (Updated – again)

Yesterday was the deadline for the Public Safety Building’s “substantial completion”. The Town has confirmed that goal was reached.

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Welcome to Kindergarten party – August 22

August 14, 2019 09:32:35 AM
Thumbnail image for Welcome to Kindergarten party – August 22

The Class of 2032 is about to begin a big journey. To kick it off, the Southborough Library is holding a Welcome to Kindergarten party.

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Back to school supply lists for K-8

August 14, 2019 07:30:43 AM
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If you’ve been waiting to find out what supplies you need, wait no longer.

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SAM interviews: Business, law, books, and good works

August 13, 2019 04:43:06 PM

Here are interviews produced this year by SAM or with their help.

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Reminder: Farmer for a Day (or four) next week

August 13, 2019 01:27:47 PM
Thumbnail image for Reminder: Farmer for a Day (or four) next week

Southborough’s Chestnut Hill Farm is bringing back its “Farmer for a Day” program.

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Thanks to those who helped provide fresh produce through the Food Pantry

August 13, 2019 09:27:44 AM
Thumbnail image for Thanks to those who helped provide fresh produce through the Food Pantry

Last week, food pantry clients were treated to fresh bounty.

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