Post image for Tennis Court Lights: Town reneging on promise to Trottier abutters?

Above: When the Town sought necessary votes to build Trottier Middle School, officials allegedly promised that fields on the combined Neary-Trottier campus wouldn’t be lit. A request to light Tennis Courts has at least one neighbor concerned about setting precedent on ignoring that promise. (image from Google Maps)

Officials are seeking permits this Wednesday that may allow the Town to renege on promises purportedly made to residents over 20 years ago.

The project seems fairly innocuous. Town Recreation is seeking to light Richardson Tennis courts. That would extend the evening hours courts are available for residents to use.

The desire for more court time something that many residents have asked for or supported. Which is why it makes sense for the Recreation Commission and Rec Department to pursue the project.

But two issues popped up in public meetings. One is that the height variance requested seems to be outside the zoning laws. (The same as Rec’s variance request for Mooney field lights.)

The second is the promises made by officials when they sought support to build Trottier Middle School.

Deerfoot Road resident Michael Robbins explained that when the Town proposed building Trottier Middle School, there were “epic battles” over it. Many meetings were held with concerned abutters. One big objection was the worry that a combined campus would end up being covered in industrial lit athletic fields.

To assuage abutters, Robbins claims that Recreation and school officials promised that the campus fields wouldn’t be lit.

It is a recollection that has purportedly been confirmed by former Recreation Commission Chair Joe Kacevich and Selectwoman Bonnie Phaneuf.

Robbins has also located a January 1996 memo written by the School Building Planning Committee Chair, documenting the committee’s Q&A with residents at one of those meetings. I’ve included two excerpts from the memo below:

school building planning committee Q&A jurisdiction school building planning committee Q&A lighting

The first indicates that the board told residents that lighting decisions would be under the school committee’s jurisdiction. The second reassures that they the committee wasn’t looking to light playing fields. (Note: That memo didn’t sepecify a long term promise.)

The promises pre-dated the current Recreation Director and Commission members. At a Zoning Board of Appeal meeting, Rec Director Doreen Ferguson said she was initially unaware. But she had since heard from Kacevich that promises were made.

But unless abutters discover restrictions in writing, Recreation seems not to be treating those promises as binding for the entire Neary “campus”.

The tennis courts are on the Parkerville Road side of campus. But Robbins is worried about the precedent breaking the promise would set. If this is approved, he forecasts future projects to light other fields on campus. [click to keep reading…]


Post image for Donate to families in need “Just Because”: Drop off at Neary through Friday

A Southborough Girl Scout troop is collecting items for families in need. Troop 89255 is working to help Project Just Because.

As the troop shared in its flyer, the local charity is dedicated to:

helping as many men, women and children as we can. It is our goal to help families by being a resource for items that families need, while creating an element of hope for a brighter tomorrow.

Girl Scout Troop 89255

(click to enlarge)

The 5th grade troop visited the Hopkinton based charity yesterday. They helped to fill out an order for a family in need. They will be continuing to collect items for other families through this Friday.

They are mainly seeking*:

project just because flyer

(click to enlarge)

  • Mittens & hats – all sizes
  • Warm Blankets – all sizes
  • Warm Pajamas – size 8 & up
  • Teen/adult hoodies – all sizes
  • Underwear & socks – all sizes

Items can be dropped off in a collection bin at the front of Neary School through this Friday, March 3rd.

For more information on Project Just Because, click here.

*Note: The charity’s website states that they will accept some gently used items, but there are restrictions: [click to keep reading…]


Post image for This week in sports: Boys Hockey and Basketball in Division Quarter Finals

Above: ARHS’ Kayla Currin scored her 100th point in Girls Hockey’s final game of the season (tweeted by @THawksHockey)

February break marked the end of the regular winter season for Algonquin’s varsity sports. Which means the full focus is on post-season tournaments.

Brackets have been posted for Ice Hockey and Basketball. Neither of ARHS’ Girls teams will play. But both ended their seasons on a high note with wins last week. And Ice Hockey’s Kayla Currin scored her 100th point in the final game.

Gonk Boys Ice Hockey hopes to make it back to the Garden this year. But first it needs to clear a few hurdles, like the Division Quarter Finals. That takes place at Navin Ice Rink this Wednesday, March 1st at 5:30 pm. The 5th seed team will play 4th seed Marlboro.

Boys Basketball’s Quarter Finals are also 5th seed v 4th seed. The Boys face St. Peter Marian on Thursday, March 2nd at 7:00 pm.

Two wrestlers are headed to the New England Interscholastic Wrestling Championships this weekend. Joe Vencile came in 6th and Bryce Finegan 7th at the All States over break. This Friday they head to the Providence Career and Technical Center. (They’ll hope to return the next day.)

Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School shared news worth boasting about the school’s Cheerleading champs:

Assabet Cheer team (L-R): Head Coach, Skyy Pakus, Sammy Downing, Aryanna Welch, Rachel Blasko, Emily Sidoti, Lauren Conroy, Lauren Inderwish, and Asst. Coach - Kailee McDavitt (contributed photo)

(click to enlarge)

The Assabet Cheer team placed First again and were named Grand Champions at the South Hadley Cheer Competition, the Eye of the Tiger Invitational. Two weeks ago they placed First at the Wachusett competition.

This is the second year in a row they placed First and were Grand Champions at South Hadley.

Have a photo of your favorite team in action to share? Email


Obituary: Rose Mary (Carrier) Bartolini, 58

by beth on February 27, 2017

Post image for Obituary: Rose Mary (Carrier) Bartolini, 58

Rose Mary (Carrier) Bartolini, 58, of Hopkinton and formerly of Southborough passed away peacefully at her home in her family’s care on Saturday, February 25, 2017. She was the devoted wife and best friend to David B. Bartolini, Sr. for the past 36 years.

Born in Worcester, she was the daughter of Margaret (Turpin) Carrier of Westborough and the late Robert Carrier.

Rose relocated to Westborough as a teenager, graduating from Westborough High School’s Class of 1976. She was capable of amazing focus, crafting and honing her artistic gifts into exceptional skill that was obvious to any observer. After high school, Rose studied painting at the School of the Worcester Art Museum, and later advanced her studies while maintaining a studio at the Ingbretson Atelier and studying classical realism under Numael Pulido. She was inducted into the Portrait Society of America in 2010.  [click to keep reading…]


Post image for Events this week: Public forums, educational art sessions for kids, the Spelling Bee, & pancakes

Above: The Museum of Fine Arts is coming to the Library to teach kids about Ancient Egypt and Animals in Art. The free programs are geared for different ages, but each include a story and art project. (image left from Facebook and right from MFA website)

Here are highlights of what’s happening around town this week. (For more, check the Event Calendar.)

[Note: The highlights don’t include ongoing weekly programs. For the Southborough Library’s regular storytime programs, click here for their events page. For the Southborough Senior Center’s ongoing classes, click here for their calendar.]

Monday, February 27, 2017

  • Public Safety Building Open Forum (7:00 pm) @ Woodward School cafeteria: The Public Safety Study Committee will hold an information session for all residents about the upcoming proposed Town Meeting warrant articles to construct a new Public Safety Facility for the Police and Fire Departments. The focus of this session will be to answer any questions from the public about the proposed building project.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

  • Algonquin Principal Search Committee Community Forum (6:30 – 8:30 pm) @ Algonquin Regional High School, auditorium, Northborough: The committee is offering an opportunity for the community to exchange its thoughts about the educational leadership experiences and attributes of the new school principal. For details, see dedicated post.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

  • Tourists of the Rainforest (4:00 – 5:00 pm) @ Southborough Library, Eaton Meeting Room: A 4-week program by Let’s Gogh Art. Children can learn about the rainforest as they create colorful art projects. This program is for children ages 6-12 years old. Children must be registered for all four weeks to participate. For details, see dedicated post.

[click to keep reading…]


Post image for The week in government: Recreational Marijuana article hearings, public safety building info session and Special Town Meeting prep

Here is a selection of the committee and board meetings for the week along with my selected highlights from the agendas. All these meetings are open to the public, so you’re welcome to stop on by.

Be aware that changes to the meeting schedule are known to happen throughout the week. For an updated list of meetings, visit the town website.

Monday, February 27, 2017

  • Board of Health, 1:00 pm @ Board of Health Office, 9 Cordaville Rd (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Answers to possible Special Town Meeting questions re On-Site Sewage Disposal issues for: Woodward School replace; proposed Public Safety Building; Golf Course Club House/Snack Shop. Board action on any petitions or articles on Recreational Marijuana. Septic System Disposal Plan for 15-Unit condo (Stonebrook Court/Village off Oregon Rd)
  • Planning Board, 7:00 pm @ Hearing Room, Town House, 17 Common St (agenda, materials packet) Agenda Highlights: Public Hearings on warrant articles for Annual Town Meeting – 3 articles on Recreational Marijuana prohibitions or restrictions, Adaptive Historic Building Reuse bylaw; Discuss establishing Open Space Subcommittee and formation of Municipal Technology Committee – Broadcast live and replayed by SAM*
  • Public Safety Study Committee, 7:00 pm @ Woodward School, cafeteria, 28 Cordaville Rd (agenda) Agenda Highlights: A public information session for all residents about the Public Safety Building Warrant Articles for Special Town Meeting
  • School Committee, 7:30 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Rd (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Attending the Southborough Advisory Committee Meeting
  • Advisory Committee, 7:30 pm @ Cordaville Hall, Rooms A and B, 9 Cordaville Rd (agenda) Agenda Highlights: School Budget Review; Presentation and discussion of Article 5— Establishment of a Municipal Technology Committee
  • Adaptive Reuse of Historic Buildings Bylaw Subcommittee, 8:00 pm @ Hearing Room, Town House, 17 Common St (agenda) Agenda Highlights: Joint meeting with Planning Board for public hearing on Article for proposed bylaw

[click to keep reading…]


Letter: Is the Golf Course Deal a good one or not?

February 27, 2017 09:20:00 AM

My Southborough accepts signed letters to the editor submitted by Southborough residents. Letters may be emailed to

4 comments Read the full article →

Weigh in on the principal searches for Finn & Woodward – Thursday

February 27, 2017 07:30:00 AM
Thumbnail image for Weigh in on the principal searches for Finn & Woodward – Thursday

The Principal Search Committees for Finn and Woodward are holding public feedback forums.

0 comments Read the full article →

Open discussion thread: Ask questions, share opinions

February 24, 2017 11:20:28 AM
Thumbnail image for Open discussion thread: Ask questions, share opinions

The open discussion thread is your place to ask questions, sound off on town issues, or share information with other readers.

24 comments Read the full article →

Fay School welcomes kids to enjoy Animal Adventures – Saturday

February 24, 2017 08:04:30 AM
Thumbnail image for Fay School welcomes kids to enjoy Animal Adventures – Saturday

Fay School is holding another “Saturdays at Fay” event this weekend. (Pre-registration is required.)

0 comments Read the full article →

Kite flying & Nature walk at the farm – Sunday

February 23, 2017 02:20:34 PM
Thumbnail image for Kite flying & Nature walk at the farm – Sunday

The Open Space Preservation Commission asked me to let readers know they are holding a special free event this weekend.

0 comments Read the full article →

On the market this week in Southborough

February 23, 2017 11:47:00 AM
Thumbnail image for On the market this week in Southborough

What went on and off the market this week.

0 comments Read the full article →

Tonight’s meetings: Master Plan recommendation at Senior Center; BOS possible vote on recommendation at Community House

February 23, 2017 09:12:12 AM
Thumbnail image for Tonight’s meetings: Master Plan recommendation at Senior Center; BOS possible vote on recommendation at Community House

There was some confusion over the process for tonight’s meetings on the St. Mark’s Golf Course. I already updated yesterday’s post. But given the importance of these meetings to so many readers, I thought this deserved a post of its own.

3 comments Read the full article →

Obituary: Paul M. Heffernan, 85

February 23, 2017 07:28:26 AM
Thumbnail image for Obituary: Paul M. Heffernan, 85

Paul M. Heffernan, 85, of Southborough, died on Monday, February 20, 2017, at his home, surrounded by family following a courageous battle with cancer.

0 comments Read the full article →