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Vol. 1 No. 5

Free to Every Home and Business Every Month

April 1, 2011

Stobbart’s Nurseries, Inc. Celebrates 65 Years Tri-County Students Explore Career Options at HMEA BY J.D. O’GARA

In an era where Mom and Pop shops often give way to large chain stores, one business on East Central Street in Franklin has continued to bloom – Stobbart’s Nursery. Begun back in 1946, by Frederick Stobbart, the nursery, known for its landscaping services and also featuring a flower shop, will celebrate its 65th birthday this year. His son, Wayne Stobbart, continues the business to this day out of the original twostory building, albeit with three additions added since.

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“When he went into the service, (my father Fred) learned engineering, and when he came out he knew he wanted a landscape business.” After a few years with the Army Corps of Engineers, Stobbart returned to begin his business. Back then, says Wayne, there weren’t too many landscapers around, which gave Stobbart an edge up. “People weren’t landscapers; there was just one game in town. That was Stobbart’s,” says Wayne. He explains that the idea of landscaping was a relatively new concept for suburban homes. “There weren’t a lot of people who had landscaping done,” he adds. As a result, Fred got a lot of business from home-


Stobbart’s original landscaping facility (left) as it appeared in 1946. Holly Lorusso, left, has worked for Wayne Stobbart, right, for over 20 years. Stobbart's celebrates its 65th anniversary this year.

owners in larger or more well-todo communities. “My father did more work in Woonsocket, Wellesley and Newton,” says Stobbart.

beginning.” At first, Stobbart’s did not feature a flower shop at all. In fact, Wayne Stobbart explains that his uncle ran Franklin Florist at the

STOBBART’S NURSERIES continued on page 3

“It’s a lot of fun everyday,” says the medical careers student, who will study nursing at Fitchburg

CAREERS continued on page 2

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In the post-war era, Stobbart says, his father was poised to be at the forefront of a new suburban market. “We were in place during the growth boom,” says Stobbart, “Everyone had to have a shade tree, so we were here from that

Carsten Shaw enjoys her job. The 17-year-old Tri-County senior, from Medway, smiles broadly as she gives a hug to Sean McEntee, one of the adults with developmental disabilities Shaw works with in a new cooperative education program her vocational school is running with Horace Mann Educational Associates (HMEA).

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CAREERS continued from page 1

State next fall. Shaw says that working with people with developmental disabilities had never crossed her mind until she came across the opportunity at a school job fair last year. “You never have the same schedule.” “The students work in the day habilitation programs, directly with people who have developmental disabilities,” says Michael Moloney, President and CEO of HMEA. “They might take people out into the community to bowl or to volunteer … or directly help to do physical therapy. Some individuals may have autism, Down’s Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, or they might be people with intellectual disabilities. The only difference between people with disabilities and (people without) is that they may need a little more help.” HMEA is a Franklin-based nonprofit organization that supports 2,500 individuals, aged 1-94, with developmental disabilities in 110 Massachusetts communities across central and southeastern Massachusetts. These individuals, many of whom in an earlier time would have lived in state institutions, are able to enjoy life in the community because of the support they get from HMEA. HMEA embarked on the initiative with Tri-County Regional Vocational High School in Franklin

April 1. 2011

to draw students to careers working with this population. The program, run by Tri-County allows seniors who are preparing for careers in the medical field to work at an HMEA Day Habilitation (or “Day Hab”) program. These students alternate their academic and vocational instruction with their jobs at HMEA. HMEA’s Day Hab is designed to increase independent living and to enable individuals to become more involved in community activities. Shaw, who works at the Plainville HMEA five days a week, every other week, says that her job responsibilities run the gamut, from helping individuals in the program work at volunteer jobs with such organizations such as Meals on Wheels, the local senior center, the Pawtucket Red Sox, to helping people with disabilities grocery shop, to doing exercise, physical therapy and discussing current events to help keep participants’ minds active. Mary-Ellen MacLeod, Director of Cooperative Education at TriCounty, says the program is a winwin for the school and for HMEA. “HMEA is a very nurturing organization that allows our students to get oriented towards their future careers, to use their vocational skills, and to create a portfolio of ‘on the job’ experience, thus gaining an edge in the toughest job market since the Great Depression.”




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Medway Tri-County Senior Carsten Shaw, (left) is shown here with Sean McEntee. McEntee is one of the adults with developmental disabilities Shaw works with as part of a new cooperative education program between Tri-County and Horace Mann Educational Associates (HMEA).

“People think you’re helping someone with a disability, you’re giving to them, but if you have the right relationship, working with people with disabilities make your life so much richer, says Moloney, who sees the partnership as a model. “The Tri-County students are getting the chance to see upclose the rewards of working in the human services field,” Moloney who also chairs a provider’s council, a statewide trade organization made up of over 200 nonprofits, anticipates a shortage of care providers in the next couple of decades. “There will be a 25% increase in dependent population in Massachusetts. Moloney points to an in-

crease in seniors as baby boomers age, more children and a higher number of people with disabilities. With an increase in autism, more people are living with medical issues. All this, and “the working population is going to remain flat. We’re anticipating we’re going to need more warm bodies.” “This year we have 4 interns working directly with people in day habilitation programs, and we have about 10 juniors who volunteer in a part-time program…these are 17-year-olds being exposed to a field they didn’t know existed,” says Moloney. The President of HMEA, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year, being in Franklin for about 18 years of that

time, says that he hopes students will consider coming back to work in the field after college. Moloney also notes that HMEA has an arrangement with Clark University and Simmons College, to help its workers further their education, and while Tri-County students do their internships there, they can also participate in an online program to earn their credential in human services. HMEA also partners with other organizations, like EMC, in mutually beneficial relationships. “We have a lot of professional positions that require masters degrees,” says Moloney. “Those are the jobs that need filling.”-

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Local Lions Combine Efforts to Help Out National Braille Press BY J.D. O’GARA At about 8:30 a.m. Saturday morning, April 2, a combined team of members of Lions Clubs’ from Medway. Millis, Franklin and Holliston will board a bus on a mission. Their destination? The National Braille Press (NBP) on Saint Stephen Street in Boston. The group of about 20 will be providing a needed service, putting together a Braille book. Dawn Rice-Norton, a physical therapist and Lion from Medway who organized this trip, explains that for this activity, the Lions will be creating a “sort of assembly line,” actually putting Braille pieces into books that already have pictures and words. “Everyone has a piece to put on,” she says, “so you have the picture and the text and the Braille.” “We always appreciate the help,” says Jefferson Lyons, VP of Operations for the 84-year-old National Braille Press. “We often have volunteers working on our book-of-the-

STOBBART’S NURSERIES continued from page 1

time. Frederick Stobbart had not wanted to create competition for his uncle. It wasn’t until 1968, while Franklin Florist was under new ownership, that a flower shop and FTD floral were added to the mix. “We are now Stobbart’s Nurseries, Inc., “ says Stobbart, who also bought the name Franklin Florist about 10 years ago. Out of three siblings, Wayne Stobbart was the only one who continued on in the family business. In 1970, Wayne studied agriculture from Stockbridge at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. He graduated with a degree in landscape design, and in 1985, he purchased the business from his father. Stobbart explains that the landscaping vastly differs from “the lawn mowing business.” “It’s not just cutting grass and trimming shrubs,” Stobbart maintains. “In the lawn mowing business, if you have a pickup truck and a lawnmower, you are a landscaper. That is something of a misnomer.” Stobbart says that in true landscaping, a lot goes into the planning of the landscape. He studied “plant and soil sciences, plant ID, heartiness zones,” and he can tell you which plants do well in what areas. He explains that here, al-

month club for children,” which, he explains, are “labor intensive and time sensitive. They basically involve taking a print book and chopping it up into separate pages, and then we add pages of our own with Braille on them, and then we put them together again – So what you wind up with is a print book that also has clear plastic pages inserted with the book.” Lyons explains that thanks to this work, sighted parents can read with their blind children and blind parent can read with their sighted children. Even though there are embossers, which Lyons says are like computer printers, they operate too slowly to be practical. In addition, he says, the “machines that most companies use to collate and bind a book involve pressure, and … that pressure on the book would crush the Braille.” About 15 or 20 volunteer groups come in per year, says Lyons, for both book of the month and special projects. The NBP’s claim to fame, in fact, was a volunteer assembly line

though Franklin is in zone 5/6, there are “micro-climates,” that differ from town to town. “On the Cape, you can grow hydrangeas and get big beautiful flowers, but you can also do that in Sharon and Wellesley,” he says. Because of his expertise, which caters to residents and commercial businesses, he says, a lot of his

that was able to pull off the Braille release of the last few books of the Harry Potter series at the same time as the release of the sighted version. “We were given the files 2 weeks in advance,” says Lyons. “We had two weeks to create over a million pages of Braille. A lot of work was done by volunteers,” says Lyons, who adds that the NBP also employs about 45 people. At the NBP, the Braille is put onto metal plates, which then go into one of the NBP’s three Heidelberg printing presses that were converted from printing to Braille decades ago, says Lyons. Despite their age (the newest one is from 1964), the presses run 810 hours five days a week. Working with the NBP falls in line for the cause most associated with the Lions Club – eye research. In 2010, the Lions Clubs of Massachusetts gave $169,644 in grant awards to Massachusetts eye research. Over the years, the amount Lions have given has totaled $27,406,508.30.

“business is repeat & word-ofmouth.” Stobbart's does a lot of “hardscapes,” designing and installing brick or pavers and walls and patios. Holly Lorusso, who is herself a longtime fixture at Stobbart's explains that “we work with a lot of

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Still, eye research is not all the Lions support. “With Lions, everyone says vision, but now they do measles inoculations, diabetes, and we do hearing aides as well,” says Rice-Norton. In fact, she explains that very recently, Lions Clubs International Foundation provided over $1.25 million in U.S. dollars, or 100 million Japanese Yen, to help the Japanese people following recent catastrophic events. Just as the support the Lions give spans a variety of causes, so does the involvement of each individual Lion. Some are able to put in more volunteer time, such as working toward the annual District 33K Lions’ PRIDE (Performance, Recognition, Involvement, District and Club Excellence) program, which takes Lions work beyond their own Club and expands it to a district level. In fact, a special PRIDE pin is awarded to those Lions who participated in these extra efforts, and assembling a Braille book counts toward earning a PRIDE pin. Rice-Norton explains, however, that Lions work together as a TEAM (together everyone accomplishes more), and that involvement varies according to what each Lion can do.

natural mediums – granite, stone, as well as manmade pavers.” Stobbart explains that he has also worked on lighting and water features. Stobbart describes his business as “kind of a landmark, now,” that is known for its quality. As a result, he’s been busy during even these tough economic times. He also

“One thing they require is tree sales, but you could do bottles and cans, come to a dinner meeting, go on visitation. It’s hard not to do something, because there are so many fun things to do,” says Norton-Rice, who says the nature of the Lions’ work had always appealed to her, as she’d worked as a teen with children who had physical disabilities. That appeal grew greater after her brother lost his vision. Rice-Norton’s own involvement varies per week, with some weeks requiring four hours and other requiring 10 or more. “A Lion can pick and choose how much and at what level they wish to get involved at,” she says. Claudia Demillo, agrees. She’s a Medway real estate agent who became a Lion about three years ago and says her involvement is highest in spring and fall. “There are so many opportunities you could be involved with,” says Demillo. “When I met everyone, it was such a great group of really down to earth, fun, kind people, it was really hard to say, ‘Gee I don’t want to be a part of this.’ … There’s just a lot of love.”

says the Internet is huge. In fact, his floral business can be reached at Wayne Stobbart’s son Eric and daughter Lindsey have continued in the family business, as Eric owns Stobbart’s Flowers in Mansfield and Lindsey runs the store for him, says Stobbart.

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Turn Yard Debris into Valuable Fertilizer BY JEFF BUTENSKY The long winter season produced over 70 inches of snow and ice and was one of the stormiest in recent memory. This year was extremely rough on trees and shrubs, and the result is an assortment of branches on the ground throughout the region. A snowy winter does have advantages. Cold stretches of no snow cover can cause “winter burn,” and snow is excellent insulation for your lawn and garden. On those very cold nights, the snow serves as a blanket and protects the ground from the harsh winds. The soil is wet and the groundwater is higher due to all of the snowmelt, which will help spur on greening as the weather warms up. Unfortunately, salt and other types of snowmelt can have a negative impact on most plants. The salt, not insects or disease, likely impacted the dead shrubs or grass near heavily treated areas. Spring landscaping begins with the removal of debris that has fallen to the ground during the winter. Whether you choose to burn yard waste or leave it to decompose, it could have a positive impact on the residential landscape. Either way, this brush con-

tains a lot of nutrition that could be recycled back into your lawn and garden. While opened burning is allowed in most towns in Massachusetts, wood and brush smoke is a breathing hazard that could impact you and your neighbors. The State has rules for opened burning, and most Towns require a permit or notification. Contact your Town office or your local fire department for more information. Burning of grass, hay, and leaves is not permitted, as these cause acrid smoke. Also, leaves can blow around if the wind kicks up, causing a fire hazard. Permitted burning can only occur through May 1, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and at least 75 feet from a structure. Always have a garden hose or fire extinguisher nearby in case your fire gets out of control. If you choose to burn yard waste, the pile of ash created is valuable. Although the type of wood and brush that is burned influences the composition of this ash, it is a good source of nutrition for your lawn and garden. Wood ash contains many of the basic nutrients in trace amounts that plants need to survive. In addition, approximately ten percent of wood and brush ash is

potash, which is a form of potassium. Potassium is essential for all healthy plants. Plants and lawns that lack potassium are often discolored, appear dry, and have weak root systems. Potassium keeps plants healthy and protects them against disease. Almost all store bought basic fertilizers, both chemical based or organic, contain potassium, often around ten percent on average. Therefore, you ash is an excellent fertilizer and can easily be spread on your lawn or garden once cooled. Ashes from a fireplace or wood stove are also great for the garden if you are burning mostly wood. If you choose not to burn your yard waste, tree debris and brush can be easily chipped into landscaping materials. Whole pine branches break down relatively quickly, and pine needles and cones are great ground cover. Small brush piles are also a great natural wildlife habitat. When raking thatch, acorn remains, pine needles, and broken tree parts off your lawn, consider using this material as groundcover in a perennial garden. However, this is acidic, so add lime. The breakdown of these materials will provide a source of plant nutrition in future seasons.

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Franklin Cultural Council Grant Reception to Honor Recipients The Franklin Cultural Council (FCC) reviewed proposals from various artists, schools and musicians offering programs in support of the arts, humanities, and interpretive science projects for the benefit of the Franklin community. FCC is pleased to announce grants totaling $9,377 were awarded to 25 projects that best provided a public benefit to Franklin residents including Concerts on the Common, Franklin 4th of July Celebration, Franklin Public Schools Summer Theatre Program, and many more. For a complete list of grants funded this year, please visit our web site at: http://franklinma.virtualtownhall.n et/Pages/FranklinMA_BComm/cu ltural.

ticularly at a time of such financial hardship. The FCC does a great job of utilizing state dollars and making them really stretch to fund the programs that are invaluable threads of Franklin’s cultural fabric. This reception is a chance to really highlight the important work they do.”

The Franklin Cultural Council is pleased to host a reception in honor of its 2011 grant award recipients at The Franklin Country Club on Sunday April 10th at 2pm. Light refreshments will be provided. This is an opportunity for the recipients to get together, share their experiences and meet their fellow artists. Franklin Town Administrator, Jeff Nutting, Senator Karen Spilka and Franklin Town Council members will be in attendance to welcome guests.

The council has several open seats to fill and membership is open to all Franklin residents. Meetings are held monthly from September to June. Please contact Sue Sheridan at (508) 533-1917 or email at if you are interested in getting involved with this fun volunteer community activity.

Representative Vallee stated, “I take great pride in the fact that our community is home to vibrant cultural organizations that provide enriching and educational experiences for our residents, par-

The Franklin Cultural Council is a local branch of the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and is responsible for reviewing and awarding grants for cultural programs in the town. If you have an interest in becoming active in promoting the arts and humanities in Franklin the Franklin Cultural Council has an opportunity for you.

Information and grant proposal forms are available online at or from the Franklin Town Clerk’s office. The deadline for an application to be submitted for the next grant cycle is October 15, 2011. Please mail to Franklin Cultural Council, PMB 284, 279 East Central Street, Franklin, MA 02038.

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Tri-County RVTHS School Committee   Appoints School Business Administrator Stephen F. Dockray as New Superintendent The Tri-County RVTHS School Committee has appointed School Business Administrator Stephen F. Dockray as the school’s new Superintendent-Director. The School Committee announced the decision during its meeting on Wednesday, February 16. Dockray will assume the role when current Superintendent-Director Barbara Renzoni retires on July 31, 2011. “This opportunity to serve as Superintendent is the culmination of my career,” said Dockray. “It’s a new challenge and I’m looking forward to it.” Dockray brings his financial and business expertise to the role of Superintendent, having served as the School Business Administrator since joining the Tri-County administrative team in February of 2006. He previously served as the Business/Computer Operations Manager at Blue Hills Regional Technical School in Canton for ten years. As a Certified Public Accountant, Dockray worked for many years in private industry before moving into the public sector and becoming a Certified School Business Administrator. “As a CPA, I got involved in the audit process with many municipalities and towns and liked the atmosphere,” he explained. “I really enjoy the diversity of working at a career technical school. We are our own school district and make our own decisions. It’s different every day and it’s always interesting.” During his five years as TriCounty’s School Business Administrator, Dockray has worked to sustain the budget and level of spending to perpetuate the school’s

many academic and career technical programs. “I feel that career technical education is a great opportunity for students, especially in today’s competitive environment,” noted Dockray, whose son is about to graduate from Blue Hills Regional Technical School. “The experience and knowledge they gain gives them such an advantage,” he added. Dockray is a resident of Canton, MA and received a B.S. in Accounting from Bentley College and an M.B.A. in Finance from Bentley Graduate School. He has worked as a Senior Financial Analyst for Fleet Financial Group and a Senior Auditor in Public Ac-

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counting and is a Massachusetts Certified Public Purchasing Official. The Tri-County RVTHS School Committee has appointed School Business Administrator Stephen F. Dockray of Canton as the school’s new Superintendent-Director. Dockray will assume the role when current Superintendent-Director Barbara Renzoni retires on July 31, 2011.

Stephen Dockray was recently named Superintendent-Director of Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School.

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Dean Leadership Institute to Feature Tufts Head Roosevelt Franklin, MA –James Roosevelt, Jr., President and CEO of Tufts Health Plan will be the featured speaker at the fifth annual Dean Leadership Institute (DLI) Executive Lecture on April 6. He will speak about Social Security and Medicare. The program begins at 5:30 p.m. with a reception at the Dean College Campus Center Multi Purpose Room. Roosevelt’s presentation will begin at 6:30 p.m. The program is open to the public, but reservations are requested. For more information and to reserve a space, please call (508) 541-1612. Roosevelt is the grandson of

Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt and has served as co-chair of the Democratic Rules Committee, and as co-chair of President Obama’s transition team on Social Security and Medicare. The Dean Leadership Institute was created as a “Think Tank” geared to the needs of current and emerging business leaders in the region. DLI’s keystone is providing programs that combine the academic disciplines of higher education with the real-world experiences of business leaders. “Our mission is to offer unique interactive opportunities for Dean

College students, alumni, regional business and community leaders in order to enhance their understanding of the theoretical and practical issues facing the business sector in today’s economy,” said P. Gerard Shaw, Ph.D., acting chairman of Dean’s Business department. “We are most grateful to our sponsors this year: East Coast Benefit Plans, Inc.; Gatehouse Media New England; The Sun Chronicle; Sodexo Education, Tufts Health Plan, Liberty Mutual, Kearny Donovan & McGee, P.C.; and the YMCA,” said Dr. Shaw.

April 1. 2011

Franklin Downtown Partnership Seeking Members, Sponsors The Franklin Downtown Partnership has kicked off its annual membership and sponsorship drives for 2011 as it plans more events and involvement in Franklin this year. The Partnership gained more than 50 new members in 2010 and hopes to increase its numbers again this year, according to Executive Director Lisa Piana. The 140member strong organization brings together residents and businesses to improve the downtown, draw visitors and beautify the area. “Being a member of the Franklin Downtown Partnership gives a business or resident a vehicle to be part of matters affecting our downtown’s future,” says Partnership President Nicole Fortier, branch officer at Dean Bank. “For an affordable price, our members are involved in revitalization projects like the streetscape design work. We give them a voice in decisions that directly affect their businesses and their day-to-day lives.” Membership also gives certain privileges at Franklin’s festivals and strolls, free links on the Partnership’s website,, communication updates on events and projects, and informational meetings and networking opportunities.

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As a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, the Partnership relies exclusively on membership dues and sponsorships for funding. Sponsorships make up the majority of funds for popular events like the annual Strawberry Stroll, the Harvest Festival, the Holiday Stroll, and spring and winter Beautification days. Each year attendance at those events has increased, according to Fortier. On Saturday, May 21, the Partnership will join members of the Franklin Garden Club for the annual Beautification Day. Volunteers will plant more than 1,400 flowers throughout the downtown, including planters on the bridge and center island as well as on sidewalks in front of businesses. Sponsors’ names will be displayed prominently on signage in the center of town. New members are always welcome, and membership is open to all residents and businesses, regardless of whether they are located downtown. The Partnership is actively looking for businesses and individuals to sponsor all upcoming events. A full calendar of events, sponsorship opportunities, applications, deadlines, and contact information can be found on the Partnership’s website,, or by contacting Lisa Piana at (774) 571-3109 or downtown.franklin@

Town of Franklin Reimbursement Policy: The reimbursement amount for damaged mailboxes is $40.00. For a resident to receive a reimbursement, they are required to provide a paid receipt or invoice. (Non Franklin residents check your town policy)

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A collaboration of community leaders, businesses and residents interested in revitalizing Downtown Franklin into an exciting, vibrant environment rich with opportunity. Have You Heard What’s New in Franklin? For more information, contact: Executive Director (774) 571-3109 The Partnership is a Non-Profit 501(c)3 organization.

Franklin Democrats Elect Delegates to State Convention to be Held June 4 Registered Democrats in Franklin recently held a caucus to elect delegates to the 2011 Massachusetts Democratic Convention.

will gather to vote on an Action Agenda and participate in training on party building, electoral techniques and issue-based organizing.

Elected as delegates were Gino Carlucci, Gregory Dellorco, Frank Falvey, James Hill, Joni Magee, Dawn Palladini, Donald Palladini, Al Pizzi, Susan Plume, Helen Reebenacker, Alicia Roy, Denise Schultz, Robert Vacca, and Maryann Ziemba. Jeffrey N. Roy, Chair of the Franklin Democrats, will serve as an ex officio delegate.

“The caucus was very well attended, with a lot of energy and enthusiasm in the room,” commented Roy. “The successes of 2010 and the upcoming elections in 2012 have generated a lot of interest and it was exciting to see so many people take part,” he added. The Franklin committee normally meets on the second Monday of the month in the training room on the third floor of the Franklin Municipal Building.

Also serving as ex officio delegate is Representative James Vallee, D-Franklin. Mary Nuahn, Mark Brady, and Robert Dellorco were elected as alternates. Ron Huntley, Max Morongiello, and Lester Quan were selected as addon delegates.

For more information on the Democratic Party or any of their meetings, please contact Jeffrey Roy at or check out their website at

The Convention will be held on Saturday, June 4th at the Tsongas Arena in Lowell.

For general information on the Convention, please contact the Democratic State Committee at (617) 776-2676.

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Just a few photos from the Franklin Footlighters March 18 & 19 production of You’re A Good Man Charlie Brown. The production company is comprised of Franklin’s Annie Sullivan, Horace Mann, and Remington middle schools. Renee Hersee is the musical director and Marianne Lonati the drama director and choreographer. The last photo is post-show featuring cast members: Becca Kenney, Little Red Haired Girl; Madeline Fields, Sally; Grant Spinella, Charlie Brown; Ryan Glynn Schroeder, Shannon Kinney, Snoopy; Casey Capobianco, Lucy, Kristen Kinney, Violet

Local Town Pages

Page 8

April 1. 2011

Remembering the Life & Death of President Lincoln BY TED CANNON Most might think of April as a month in which snow and biting wind turns to soft rain and gentle breezes. However, the month also marks the anniversary of the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. No event has left a greater impact on this country than the Civil War, except arguably the King Philip War or the French & Indian War, but I’ll still go with the Civil War, so we’ll leave those topics for future columns. The Revolutionary War finally broke the bonds that tied us to England and resulted in the creation of a new and great country, the likes of which the world had never seen before. The Second World War was dramatic and epic in its scope. However, it took the most horrible events of the Civil War to gather up the motley col-

lection of states, like so many pieces of iron and carbon, and forged them into the steel that would become the United States of America as we know it today. However, the fires of that forge were not easily lit, nor easily stoked. It took all of the intellect, character, stamina and force of personality of our most extraordinary President to guide our country through the Civil War. Shortly after our 16th President, Abraham Lincoln, was sworn in as President, he faced the crisis of starving troops holding Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor. Intuitively knowing that the Union could not be seen as the aggressor by several European powers waiting to jump in on one side or another to their economic advantage, Lincoln shrewdly gave the order for Major Robert Anderson to hold the fort, despite the soldiers’ being close to

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starvation and suffering terrible thirst as a result of a Confederate blockade. Rather than abandoning the fort or trying to make the Confederates capitulate by force of arms, Lincoln ordered that supply ships be sent to the fort. This put the Confederate forces in the position of having to become the aggressor by firing on a ship and fort that were merely trying to give food and drink to starving and thirsty troops. After the outbreak of war, Lincoln almost immediately suspended the Writ of Habeas Corpus (Latin: you are to have the body). This allowed the Union Army and others in the Union with police authority to arrest and hold suspected political prisoners indefinitely and for virtually any reason. Such a drastic step would never be allowed today, but at the time was instrumental in helping the government gain control over the rapidly changing (and often deteriorating) political and civil upheaval at the time. During the war, President Lincoln worked around the clock to the point of sheer exhaustion. The strain on the President must have been incredible as he guided the country through the war. He had to cope with the death of his young son Willie at age 11 from typhoid fever, and the subsequent psychological decline of the First Lady. He purposely assembled his administration’s cabinet from a mixture of democrats and republicans and appointed many men who, at the outset of his presidency, con-

sidered him an ignorant “country bumpkin.” His Secretary of State, William Seward, had just narrowly lost the republican nomination to Lincoln, and while still feeling he was entitled to be the president, figured he would operate all the controls of the office of president behind the scenes. Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, a highly successful Washington trial attorney and dynamic but caustic personality, considered himself far superior to Lincoln in almost all ways. Both Seward and Stanton quickly grew to love and admire their boss, who left no doubt about who was in charge. Finally, after giving his country all that he had, President Lincoln got to hear to news of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia, commanded by General Robert E. Lee, surrendering to the Union Army, commanded by General Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Court House, Virginia on April 9, 1865. Then, three years removed from the Willie’s death and with the war over, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln finally had some time to spend together to help each heal their own wounds just as the country began to heal. So it was that only five days after Lee’s surrender, on April 14, 1865, the Lincolns decided to spend a quiet night at the theatre. President Lincoln loved the theatre and often went to give his mind and body a rest. Of course we know what happened that night. Enraged by the Union victory only days ear-

lier, John Wilkes Booth shot the President in the back of the head. The President’s body lingered in the land of the living through the night, but the end was inevitable and he died the following morning. Thus ended the life our country’s most incredible and capable President. He began is time in office by having to sneak into Washington for his first inauguration under the cover of darkness and disguise due to threats on his life as the country began to crumble around him. His time in Washington ended with a funeral process that the country had never before seen has never experienced since. His body lay in state at the White House and Capitol for several days and then a funeral train carried his remains throughout the country to allow as many as possible to pay their respects. I’ve always felt an extra sense of sadness about the life and death of President Lincoln. I believe it is because he accomplished so much despite such great obstacles, and then had virtually no time to enjoy his handiwork. I do find comfort in the fact that during the long train ride that carried his remains from Washington to his final resting place in Springfield, Illinois, the President had then, and still has to this day, the company of his beloved son Willie. Ted Cannon is a Partner at the Franklin law firm of Doherty, Ciechanowski, Dugan & Cannon, P.C.

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 9

Save the Date for Franklin Downtown Beautification Day -- Saturday, May 21 It’s a community effort. The yearly sprucing up the Franklin downtown area is a true testament to the old expression “many hands make light work.” It would have to be for the eighth annual Franklin Beautification Day, when 1,200 flowering plants are planted to brighten up the town.

do it.” The town’s Department of Public Works also gets into the mix. “They get us the compost and help with cleanup and the water system,” Mason adds. Although one day is slotted for the planting, more than one day’s effort goes into the planning.

“It’s the Franklin garden club, the Franklin Downtown Partnership members, the Franklin High “It’s a 2 part project, School boys and girls so on a Friday mornhockey teams, and the ing, we have people volunteer residents of who meet at Franklin” who work toWadsworth Farm on gether to make the event Spring Street. At 9 happen, says event chaira.m., we sort the person Eileen Mason, plants and we stage who originated the event them.” Mason exalong with Carol Harper. plains that a variety of The flowering plants are plants go in each conput in window boxes on tainer, so they need to bridges and in the barrels be sorted ahead of and troughs on the center Over 1,200 flowering plants are planted on Franklin time. Downtown Beautification Day. Photo used with permission island downtown, from the Franklin Downtown Partnership. “You can imagine, if “All of those flowers are you have 1200 plants town is positive and long lasting.” donated. We simply could not just delivered downtown what “We usually get about 30 peofreshen up the downtown area with chaos that would be,” she chuckall of those gorgeous plantings if ple,” says Mason, who says that les. The sorting, generally done by we didn’t have support from our she is always looking for more vola group of women, Mason notes, sponsors and the countless volun- unteers. In fact, for local high is about a two-hour project. teers who do all the hard work,” school students, working on says Piana. “We are very proud of Franklin Beautification Day the impact those planters make counts toward credit for commuevery year, and we rely solely on nity service hours, she adds. outside support. We do a lot on a “If people want to get involved in small budget and the impression community, this is a great way to on people coming to the down-

Mason says she is out there the next day, Downtown Beautification Day, at 7 a.m. “We send trucks over to the farm and load them up and deliver them to the locations,” she says. Volunteers donate their time and their pickup trucks to do this, she adds. In addition to the mass plantings, the committee generally asks local businesses to get into the mix. Not only does the event have “a whole

bunch of sponsors and it changes every year” including “banks and businesses around town,” but many businesses also take responsibility for beautifying their own storefront area. This year, in particular, says Mason, the group is looking for donations to replace the window boxes. If you are interested in volunteering or donating, please contact Eileen Mason at or (508) 330-4234 chairperson Eileen Mason. More information will also be available at

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

April Calendar Ongoing The Franklin Lions Club meets on the second Thursday every month at 7:00 pm. They meet at Alumni Restaurant for dinner followed by a meeting. The group discusses activities in the local area and surrounding district. If you are interested in attending a meeting, contact Lions Club president Mark Sawyer at 508-528-5839. Visit their website at www. for more information on the Lions Club’s mission and activities. April 3 Franklin Chargers Pizzeria Uno Fundraiser, Tell everyone you know – dine in or take out all day on April 3rd. Coupons will be needed and can be found on our fundraising page at April 4 Open Fall Registration, Franklin School of the Performing Arts, 38 Main Street, (508) 528-8668 April 6 Franklin Art Association, featuring Rockport artist John Caggiano, 6:30 – 9:00 p.m. at the Franklin Senior Center, 10 Daniel McCahill Street. View Caggiano’s work at Meetings are free and open to the public. For more information, email

the FAA secretary at Tips for Would-Be and Frustrated Writers, 7-9 p.m., Local Author Laura Spinella will speak on writing and publishing, Franklin Adult Education, Franklin High School, $10. Friends of Franklin Library (FOFL) monthly meeting, 7 p.m., Franklin Public Library Community Room, lower level April 7 “A Night with Ron Kaufman,” featured at Franklin Republican Town Committee Monthly Meeting, 7:30 pm, Franklin Municipal Building, 355 East Central St. Meeting topics often include local, state and national concerns. Visitors are most welcome. Additional information on activities is listed at April 11 Franklin Democratic Town Committee Monthly Meeting, 7 p.m. Franklin Municipal Building, Training Room, Third Floor, Through April 13 Church of the Redeemer, 31 Hayward St. they will hold evening prayer at 7:30 p.m. followed by a Bible study and discussion. Other times in April include: April 16 – Seder: A Passover dinner at 6 p.m.

April 13 Franklin Newcomers Club meeting, 7:30 p.m., 3 Restaurant (upstairs), Jeff Nutting, Franklin Town Administrator, and one or more representatives from the Franklin Town Council will join us. Complimentary appetizers, soft drinks and cash bar. Visit Through April 14 St. John’s Episcopal Church, 237 Pleasant St., will host free classes and discussion for the four Thursdays prior to Easter week. A simple meal will be served at 6:30 p.m. follow by a lesson and discussion at 7 p.m. April 14 Franklin Lions Club meeting, 7 p.m., Alumni Restaurant for dinner, then meeting. If you are interested in attending a meeting, contact Lions Club president Mark Sawyer at (508) 528-5839. Visit their website at www. for more information on the Lions Club’s mission and activities. April 16 Franklin’s Earth Day, 9 a.m.12 p.m., Volunteers should report to Beaver Pond between 9-11 a.m., T-shirts for first 300 volunteers, and pizza and drinks for volunteers who return to Beaver Pond at Noon.

Breakfast with the Bunny. This year’s theme is “Hopping Down the Bunny Trail hosted by the YMCA.” Kids and parents can enjoy a full breakfast with the Easter Bunny, an Easter egg hunt and picture with the Bunny. $6 for adults, $4 for kids under 10 years. There are three seatings: 8:30, 9:30 and 10:30 a.m.. Call (508) 528-8708 to reserve your place. It is open to the public. April 17 At Church of the Redeemer, 31 Hayward St., Palm Sunday – 10 a.m. worship service. April 18– 20 – Holy Week: Mon., Tues., Wed. – evening service. April 21 – Thursday Service: Washing of the Feet. April 22 – Good Friday Service at 12 noon and 7:30 p.m. April 24 – Easter Sunday 10 a.m. service. April 19 Passover Begins (Ends April 25) April 20 Franklin Recycling Committee Meeting, Municipal Building, Room 106, 6:30 p.m. April 22 Easter Egg Hunt, 9 to 11 a.m., at the Franklin High School Field House. Kids can enjoy an Easter egg hunt, decorate eggs, face painting, a picture with Peter Cottontail, coloring, games for younger kids. $10 per child.

April 24 Happy Easter! Franklin Federated Church (171 Main St.) and United Methodist Church (82 W. Central St.). will team up to offer a Sunrise Service which will start at 6 a.m. at Camp Haiastan. The camp is located just off of Summer St. April 29 Night of Opera Scenes, at 7:30 p.m. Performed by students of the Franklin School of Performing Arts, FSPA Recital Hall, 38 Main St., Admission is free. April 30 Sunrise Montessori School Spring Fair, 31 Hayward St., Franklin from Noon to 2 p.m. This event is free and open to the general public. Games and rides for the kids, raffle baskets, silent auction and much more. All are welcome.

Franklin Lions Club Meeting April 14 The Franklin Lions Club meets on the second Thursday every month at 7 p.m. They meet at Alumni Restaurant for dinner followed by a meeting. The group discusses activities in the local area and surrounding district. If you are

interested in attending a meeting, contact Lions Club president Mark Sawyer at (508) 528-5839. Visit their website at www. for more information on the Lions Club's mission and activities.

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Easter Happenings BY ANNE PARKER Easter Sunday falls on April 24 this year. Easter is the holiday when Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. There are a variety of events planned around town for adults and children to enjoy the holiday and to welcome Spring. Children can have fun doing Easter egg hunts and games. Adults can enjoy some thoughtful prayer and meditation at various places of worship in Franklin. Check out the dates and locations below for something that you like. On Friday, April 22, 9 to 11 a.m., there will be an Easter Egg Hunt at the Franklin High School Field House. Kids can enjoy an Easter egg hunt, decorate eggs, face painting, a picture with Peter Cottontail, coloring, games for younger kids. $10 per child. On Saturday, April 16, the YMCA will host Breakfast with the Bunny. This year’s theme is “Hopping Down the Bunny Trail.” Kids and parents can enjoy a full breakfast with the Easter Bunny, an Easter egg hunt and picture with the Bunny. $6 for adults, $4 for kids under 10 years. There are three seatings: 8:30, 9:30 and 10:30 a.m.. Call (508)

528-8708 to reserve your place. It is open to the public. From March 16 to April 13, at the Church of the Redeemer, 31 Hayward St. they will hold evening prayer at 7:30 p.m. followed by a Bible study and discussion. Other times in April include: April 16 – Seder: A Passover dinner at 6 p.m. April 17 – Palm Sunday – 10:00 a.m. worship service. April 18–20 – Holy Week: Mon., Tues., Wed. – evening service. April 21 – Thursday Service: Washing of the Feet. April 22 – Good Friday Service at 12 noon and 7:30 p.m. April 24 – Easter Sunday 10 a.m. service. From March 24 to April 14 St. John’s Episcopal Church, 237 Pleasant St., will host free classes and discussion for the four Thursdays prior to Easter week. A simple meal will be served at 6:30 p.m. follow by a lesson and discussion at 7 p.m. On Easter Sunday, April 24, Franklin Federated Church (171 Main St.) and United Methodist Church (82 W. Central St.). will team up to offer a Sunrise Service which will start at 6 a.m. at Camp Haiastan. The camp is located just off of Summer St.

Page 11

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Local Town Pages

Page 12

FISH Seeking Volunteers to Transport People and Answer Telephones BY ANNE PARKER Are you looking for a ride to a medical or dental appointment? Are you unable to drive yourself for any reason one day, or several days? Look no further than the compassionate volunteers at FISH. This organization is available to Franklin residents of any age. They will arrange to drive people to their appointment. Simply call their phone number, and they are there for you.

Originally founded by the Anglican Church, the Franklin chapter of FISH was created in 1973 by a group of women at the Federated Church -- although it is not affiliated with the church. It is a nonprofit organization run completely by volunteers. People give their time to either drive or answer telephone calls. They schedule and arrange for drivers to transport clients to and from appointments. They have driven as far as Boston and Providence, and locations in

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between such as Milford, Upton, Walpole, Welleslely and Norwood Hospital. The name comes from the ichthus - the ancient Greek symbol used by early Christians. Also known as the Jesus Fish, it is one of the oldest symbols of Christianity and was formerly used as a secret sign. FISH volunteers offer a ride to people needing transportation to medical or dental appointments.

messages. If you are a transportation person you just have to drive one day a month. It's not a huge commitment," she said.

Sometimes a person needs a ride just one time. In other instances people need a ride regularly. Transportation is a phone call way. The organization is seeking more volunteers to drive and answer telephone calls, said Nancy Rappa, FISH secretary. "The nice thing about FISH is you only have to volunteer one day a month," she explained. "If you're a telephone person, you have to call in on the line 3 to 4 times a day to check

Franklin Food Pantry Our mission is to engage our community and provide the resources needed to sustain a healthy life. Thanks to the generosity of our community, we have distributed over 8,000 bags to more than 600 clients since January. Please consider making a donation to the Franklin Food Pantry when making your charitable giving plans this holiday season! You can mail your donation to the Franklin Food Pantry, P.O. Box 116, Franklin, MA 02038 or drop off donations of food at 43 West Central St., Franklin, MA. Our current needs include: • Cleaning Products • Paper Products • Health & Beauty Products • Cereal • Soup • Pasta

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April 1. 2011

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"A lot of organizations in town know about us, so they will tell clients about us," Rappa said. "We just got a call from the Veterans the other day." A client is someone who needs a ride. They call the phone number, there's a voice message, they leave their name, phone number, and tell what type of transportation they need. The client explains where and when they need a ride. "We have to ask clients what their medical issues are because we can transport someone with a walker to a car. But we don't take people with wheel chairs because we don't have drivers with the ability to take them in their car," she explained. Clients must call in advance so FISH can make sure the driver knows where they are going and what time they need to be available. Their phone number is (508) 528-2121. FISH currently has about 14 volunteers for telephone and 20 volunteer drivers. They need more to provide the service every day Mondays through Fridays throughout the month. Telephone and driver volunteers sign up for one day of the week, she said. They listen to the messages and call the client back and get the details such as where and when are they going; and if they need any help. Telephone volunteers call the driver for that day. "It works pretty well. With gas prices the way they are and the economy the way it is, we have had an awful lot of people who need transportation lately. We hate to turn people down. Our motto is to find a ride when people need it," said Rappa. On average FISH provide 5 or 6 rides a week. They are available Monday through Friday. "We take people to dialysis on a short term basis," she said. "There are people who use us a lot." "We do not get paid; we do not ask clients for money," said Rappa. "Drivers pay for their own gas." It's an ideal way to help people in need in the community without a big time commitment. The FISH Steering Committee is comprised of several people from Franklin: Judith Agopovich, president; Nancy Rappa, secretary; Madeleine Faenza, treasurer; Sandy Hunter, scheduling; Terry Robbins; Joanne Roche; Barbara Steele; Rosemary Stockman; and Clare Ames.

April 1. 2011

Local Town Pages

Page 1


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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Cutting Costs Doesn’t Mean Cutting Value Over the last year and a half, many homeowners have been forced to scale back their home improvement projects. Though the economy appears to be creeping back, the nation’s homeowners are still somewhat reticent to commit big dollars to any one project. In spite of the country’s economic woes, homeowners are embracing more cost-effective projects that don’t sacrifice quality for the sake of saving money. Recognizing the importance of maintaining a home’s value, these cost-conscious homeowners are finding that traditionally big budget projects are not the sole means to retaining a home’s value.

Good Things Come in Small Packages While the “bigger is better” mantra proved hurtful to the home improvement industry at the onset of the economic downturn, evidence is beginning to suggest that small-budget projects might be leading the way to recovery. In fact, in their annual “Cost vs. Value” report, Remodeling magazine noted that 9 of 12 upscale remodeling projects didn’t even appear among the top half of all remodels, proving that in the current economy bigger isn’t better, or at least bigger isn’t more popular. Perhaps no area of the home is more routinely targeted for refurbishing than the kitchen. In many households, the kitchen is the most popular room in the house, and therefore it makes sense that it’s the kitchen most homeowners

want to upgrade. While granite was once considered the standard for kitchen remodels, nowadays cost- and quality-conscious homeowners are increasingly turning to laminate for their kitchen remodels. Recognizing this “laminate is the new granite” trend among homeowners, Wilsonart(R) has combined its renowned AEONTM Enhanced Performance technology with stunning laminate designs that take full advantage of a shimmering, durable Gloss finish. Depositing super-tough aluminum oxide particles in layers within the overlay sheet, AEON technology allows for superior durability and enhanced resistance to scratching, scuffing and marring, making these premium designs three times more wear resistant than the industry standard and five times more scratch resistant than previous Gloss-finish laminates. This elegant new look is reflected throughout the Girona Series, which boasts a host of options reflective of the polished marble and travertine stone found in European luxury spas and retreats.

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countertops, Wilsonart is providing more options for today’s customminded homeowner looking for affordable luxury in a tight economy. Thanks to the new Wilsonart HD Sinks, homeowners can now bring a new dimension to their kitchen countertop, integrating the top, edge and sink into a complete, captivating piece. Favoring the curvaceous appeal found in luxury plumbing fixtures and appliances, Wilsonart HDSinks offer a deeper, more spacious bowl, leaving more room for pots and pans. What’s more, the integrated faucet deck holds soap and sponges while ensuring water flows downward into the sink. In

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Earth Day 2011

April 22

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Local Town Pages

Page 3

Depending on personal taste, homeowners can create a host of faux floor finishes and bring their patio to life with DRYLOK® Latex Concrete Floor Paint.

Home Improvement Trend That Won't Break The Bank Faux painting techniques are an economical and innovative way to transform any surface and can complement any decorating style. Dull concrete floors, both indoors and out, can be brought dramatically to life with a latex paint such as DRYLOK® Latex Concrete Floor Paint.

Planning and Preparation Before choosing a design, look carefully at your surface and space. Some designs are useful for disguising flaws in a floor. For other designs you may need to patch and smooth flawed surfaces first. You will also need to think about the traffic in the area you are painting. Is it worth doing an elaborate, time-consuming pattern in a high traffic area? Large, bold patterns may be out of scale for a small room. Equally, small, detailed patterns may get lost in large spaces.

Inspirations for Faux Painted Floors Brick and Stone Brick and stone finishes can add texture and/or color and can be effective indoors and outdoors.

Tiles and Mosaics Faux terra-cotta tiles are a versatile option for porches, patios and dining areas. The earthy appearance creates a warm, earthy feel and goes well with the rustic Tus-

can look and matches many decors.

Patterned and Textured Finishes For a finish that isn't too busy, you can use paint to create subtle visual texture. With pattern, your choice is endless. Covering an entire surface is one option. Alternatively, you could paint a faux rug, perhaps with patterns inspired by oriental carpets. The most important thing to remember is to follow the proper

preparation and patching procedures from the product label. If you are using a pressure washer to clean the surface, do not use on a pressure setting above 1750 psi to avoid damaging the concrete. Remember concrete acts like a sponge. Pressure washing and cleaning in general may trap residual moisture in the concrete. To check for trapped moisture, tape a 12" x 12" piece of 3 mil plastic or aluminum foil tightly on all four edges to the surface. Remove it after 24 hours. If the floor side of

the plastic or foil is damp, allow additional drying and then repeat the test. It is very important not to have trapped moisture in the concrete; it is the number one reason why epoxy and latex concrete floor paints fail.

Protecting the Pattern A clear protective coat, such as DRYLOK® WetLook Sealer is the perfect finish to protect the design from scraping of patio furniture, grease, weathering and washings. Remember to use a product that is

made to be a clear protective coat, not a penetrating sealer. A penetrating sealer is designed to enter the pores of the surface and settle into the masonry. It will not penetrate the floor paint. The clear sealer is a protective measure that should be repeated every two to four years depending on the use and exposure of the surface. Bold or subtle, bright or neutral, faux painting techniques can give your floor an expensive-looking makeover that won't break the bank.

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Decorating for Comfort Submitted by Shawn Strok

the same design as the mood you are trying to create.

A comfortable home is a place where everyone feels at home. You can “let your hair down” and truly be yourself; plunk down on the sofa, put your feet up on the coffee table. Your home is where your thoughts and dreams come together in a comfortable atmosphere.

Start with seating to set the scene. Place your sofa and chairs so they create an intimate conver-

warm feeling. Look for a cozy corner where two chairs can be placed with a table. If the space is small, consider placing a single chair, a lamp and a stack of books

Comfort is in the details. Most families have traditions and memories that are unique. These differences can be celebrated with subtle reminders around your house. Just remember not to go overboard. A little here, a little there can go a long way to creating a warm inviting atmosphere. Too much will look cluttered and chaotic. Find a shelf or side table that could use a personal touch and then add a few family photos. The frames don’t need to match, but they should coordinate and have



The Seven Easiest Vegetables to Grow at Home Rising costs at the supermarket and worries about unhealthy pesticides or preservatives on foods has led many people to start a vegetable garden at home. Growing vegetables is easier than one would think. Plus, you don't need an expansive plot of land to grow a garden. Many popular varieties can be grown right in containers or in compact spaces.

The style that you select should reflect who you are. Any style can be molded to fit the personalities, activities, and tastes of those who live in the home.

Perhaps you're wondering what vegetables are the easiest to grow if this is your first attempt at a foodbased garden. There are several to try. sation area. Curved lines and fully upholstered pieces will add to that comfortable feeling. Consider using an ottoman instead of a coffee table so you and your guests have a comfortable place to put your feet. Area rugs and throw pillows will help tie the furniture together and create a cohesive,



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or magazines for an inviting retreat. Lighting is one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to set the mood in any room. Try adding a few floor lamps, small table lamps and even wall sconces for softer, more indirect lighting. Use lower wattage bulbs in your lights for a more relaxed feel. Don’t forget candles. There are so many ways to display them: set a single candle on a table; create a grouping on a mantle or place them in front of a mirror to heighten the impact. Another way to establish a mood is by adding color and texture to your living space. Draperies and pillow can do magic and don’t overlook the power of simply draping a warm-colored throw over a chair. No matter what your decorating style, your home can have that comfortable feeling that helps you relax at the end of your hectic day.

April 1. 2011

1. TomaToes: While commonly considered vegetables, tomatoes are actually fruits. But tomatoes can be an integral part of a vegetable garden. Tomatoes are high in lycopene and other antioxidants. There are also myriad varieties to tempt your palate.

3. BeeTs: Root vegetables like beets and radishes work well in the garden as well. The bright purple color of beets indicates they are full of many essential vitamins and minerals. Toss beets in salads or use them in the traditional soup, borscht. 4. carroTs: Another subterranean-growing veggie, carrots require moist soil as they germinate, but as the plants mature need less water. Carrots can be enjoyed in a number of ways and are a staple of cooking year-round. 5. Peas: Peas grow inside the pods of legumes. These plants like moist soil that drains well. Water frequently but make sure the soil doesn't become flooded if you want peas to flourish.

Tomatoes can be planted after the soil has thawed and there is no other chance for frost. They'll require plenty of sunlight. Fruit will be available to harvest toward the latter part of the summer. 2. Zucchini: Zucchini are an Italian squash variety that appear similar to a cucumber. They can be green or yellow in coloring. This vegetable is full of potassium, folate and manganese, making it a great addition to your menu. Zucchini take about a month to mature and be ready to harvest. They grow on vines and produce large flowers before bearing fruit.

6. PePPers: Peppers come in so many varieties it's easy to find ones that appeal to your taste in cooking. Generally peppers thrive in soil high in magnesium. Using compost and Epsom salt in the soil can help achieve the environment peppers desire. 7. LeTTuce: Lettuce is another staple and the basis for many salad dishes. Lettuce also tops sandwiches and can be filled and wrapped for other recipe ideas. Seeds should be planted between 8 and 16 inches apart. Water in the morning instead of at night to prevent disease from developing.

Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 5

Welcome Spring with a Real Backyard As temperatures begin to climb, thoughts turn to the backyard: is it ready for spring? If your outdoor living space needs some serious TLC before the flowers bloom, here are some great ideas for creating a natural, authentic backyard oasis. Get decked out. The heart of any backyard is a solid wooden deck. It's the perfect spot for grilling, sharing family meals, relaxing with friends, playing with the dog, and enjoying nature. Whether you have a deck that needs a little updating or you're thinking of building a new wood deck, download the free Authentic Deck Guide at for information on upkeep, construction and building material selection. Add an outdoor room. Already have a wood deck? Great! So what's next for your yard? Brad Staggs, HGTV and DIY show host and producer, and a licensed contractor, offers a few ideas: "Think outside the box and create a lovely little outdoor living room for your family and friends. Start with a nice, quiet spot under a tree or off in a corner. Add a garden bench and a couple of wooden chairs, plus a fire pit or chiminea, and top it off with a deep arbor covered in a climbing vine. Involve the entire family by building a simple bench and chairs, and let Mom pick out the perfect flower for the arbor. Then, sit back, toast some s'mores and enjoy the fruits of your labor!"

Welcome spring with a real wood deck for a natural, authentic backyard oasis.

Keep it real. Your deck and other outdoor living projects should mesh with your backyard and be a seamless partner with nature. Unless you have plastic flowers and trees in your yard, why choose fake decking? Truth is, pressuretreated wood is the best option for decks and outdoor projects. It's beautiful, strong, durable and affordable. Wood doesn't conduct heat like other decking materials can, meaning no burned feet in the heat of summer. When treated properly, wood is impervious to rot and pests. And treated wood is proven to be people- and pet-safe. Sure there's a little bit of upkeep --



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no building products are truly maintenance-free. Every spring when you clean your home and wash and wax your car for the first time, take a look at your deck and see if it needs a little cleaning or perhaps another coat of sealant. That's all it takes. Concerned about our forests? Choosing wood for any home improvement project is a very wise environmental decision. Thriving, sustainably managed forests create a healthier environment for all of us. Choosing forest products -wood -- encourages US landowners to keep replanting trees. The forest industry plants more trees than they harvest every single year, ensuring wood will be around for generations to come. Wood is one of the only naturally renewable building products available, and the only energy it requires to manufacture it comes from the sun. You can't get much more green than that. To learn more about wood, download free do-it-yourself project plans and podcasts, check out some inspirational photos, download the Authentic Deck Guide and much more, please visit

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Page 6

April 1. 2011

Lawn Care Tips for First-Time Homeowners First-time homeowners can be overwhelmed at the responsibility that comes with home ownership. While some of those responsibilities can be stressful, others can prove therapeutic. Many homeowners find caring for their lawns to be an enjoyable hobby that helps relieve stress. Time spent outdoors in the warm sun helps improve mood, and a lush lawn and garden can instill a sense of pride in homeowners. First-time homeowners with no history of caring for a lawn can still turn their lawn into a lush oasis to be proud of.

Start With the Soil

by hand or by using a seed spreader. * Add a light layer of soil over the seed. Once the seed has been spread, cover the seeded areas with a light layer of soil. Some soils are treated, and these treated soils provide nutrients that encourage growth.

gardens need lots of work. That work should begin with a soil test. Do-it-yourself soil kits are available at most major home improvement and lawn and garden centers. For those who prefer to trust a professional, the United States Department of Agriculture has Cooperative Extension System offices in every state and U.S. territory. Such offices provide valuable information to homeowners, and many even provide free or lowcost soil tests. These tests can help homeowners learn more about their soil and what, if anything, they need to do improve its health.

* Water well but don't overdo it. The soil around the seed should be moist until the grass has grown in to its desired height. However, avoid overwatering, which can drown the seed and make new grass growth impossible.


Find the Right Grass

Some lawns might be an eyesore because the grass is not the right type of grass for that particular re- Maintaining a lush lawn can be a relaxing and rewarding hobby gion. If a grass is not a good fit for for homeowners. the region and local climate, it maintenance to stay lush. * Aerate the soil. Soil compaction likely won't thrive or will require is a problem for many homeownBermuda and tall fescue grasses considerable and often costly ers. Heavy usage often compacts are popular options in many areas the soil, making it very difficult for of North America, but it's still best the lawn to hold oxygen and water to consult a lawncare professional FREE ESTIMATES that roots need to grow and absorb to determine which grass is best for valuable nutrients. Aerating ina given region. Learn the ins and Complete Bath Remodels creases nutrient, oxygen and water outs of caring for the grass, includmovement into the soil, improving Back Splashes ing which types of seed and fertilrooting and controlling thatch izer are the best fit, as well as the Kitchen Floors buildup. Hand aerators might recommended watering guideprove effective on smaller lawns, All Types of Tile Work lines. but most lawns would benefit from Natural Stone a core aeration machine. For firstPlant Properly time homeowners, it might be best Planting new grass might seem to enlist the services of a profeslike a big undertaking, but it's ac- sional the first time aeration is tually quite easy, even for first-time done to learn the process. homeowners. Once a person has * Spread seed evenly. Grass seed determined the correct type of should be spread evenly over all 508-528-7245 grass to install, planting is much tilled areas. Spreading can be done more simple that one might think. 362 Union St, Franklin, MA 02038

Soil is the foundation for any good lawn or garden. Healthy soil will result in healthy plants and vegetables. Unfortunately, not all homeowners are lawncare enthusiasts, and first-time homeowners might discover their lawn sand


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Fertilizer is a friend to lawns, providing the nutrients a lawn needs to grow in thick. When fertilizing, use a spreader. The type of spreader is up to the homeowners, but know that drop spreaders, which drop the fertilizer directly below the spreader, tend to be more accurate but take more time, while broadcast spreaders, which drop fertilizer in a pattern away from the spreader, are less accurate but cover large areas in a much shorter period of time. Avoid fertilizing the same area twice, and be patient. Fertilizing might seem like a tedious process, but if done correctly, it should lead to a lush lawn. When fertilizing, it's best to do so during the fall and spring. The exact time to fertilize depends on the region, but it's generally best to fertilize between April and early June, and then in the fall between late September and early November. When it comes to lawn care, firsttime homeowners should not be intimidated by this sudden responsibility. Caring for a lawn can be a relaxing and rewarding hobby.


Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Lead Paint Hazards and Older Windows

Spring Garden Time Few things are anticipated more in spring than the arrival of new leaves on the trees and budding flowers in the garden. A landscape awash with fresh colors can brighten the spirit and make anyone want to head outdoors. There are many different plants that begin to show their colors in the spring. A number of perennials, annuals and trees begin to flower or show new sprouts come the springtime. Here are some plants that can be planted for springtime enjoyment.

Annuals Looking for first signs of color? Look no further than these wonderful annuals. * Alyssum: Starting in April, this cascading bounty of tiny flowers offers a sweet aroma that attracts butterflies. * Dianthus: These vivid flowers also attract butterflies and are often a cottage garden staple. * Gypsophila: Also known as baby's breath, these delicate flowers can serve as filler in any landscape. Pink and white varieties are available. * Impatiens: One of the bestknown plants for the garden, these annuals come in scores of colors and can generally tolerate full sun to full shade. * Larkspur: Belonging to the but-

tercup family, these flowers bloom in shades of white to violet. * Pansy: These flowers are some of the earliest spring bloomers, arriving alongside spring bulbs like tulips. * Petunias: Petunias put on a show of color through the entire season, making them a popular bedding flower.

Perennials These plants will come back year after year and offer spring shows. * Cherry blossom: The flowers that sprout on cherry trees are some of the first signs of spring. Their pink or white buds are often a spectacle, so much so that towns and cities hold cherry blossom festivals. * Columbine: These beautiful blooms attract butterflies and can be a nice part of a garden bed. * Jacob's ladder: Variegated foliage that is dappled with violet-colored flowers can add a sweet smell and visual interest to the garden. * Primrose: These flowers come in a variety of shades, making them versatile in any garden. They also tend to attract butterflies and hummingbirds. * Sweet violet: These fragrant flowers are edible as well as attractive. These plants can self-plant, so unless a gardener wants them to spread, they should be kept contained.

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If your home was built before 1978 and you still have the original windows, it's time to seriously consider replacing your windows -- especially if you have young children or a pregnant person living in the home.

them now," says Nevin. "This is one of the only ways to reduce lead risks for your family. Make sure to use only a contractor that is certified in lead-safe work practices and strongly consider the use

Page 7 vinyl windows offers homeowners peace-of-mind along with energy savings in the home." Nevin explains that homeowners need to understand there are four key steps to completing a "leadsafe window replacement strategy" for the home. "First, replace all single-pane windows with ENERGY STAR® qualified windows," says Nevin. "Second,

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the routine opening and closing of windows in homes built prior to 1978 can disturb lead-based paint around the windows, causing paint dust and chips to be released into the air. These lead particles are so dangerous that the EPA now requires contractors to be trained and certified before they can perform any renovation, repair or painting projects that may have previously applied lead-based paint. "Research indicates that the everyday activity of opening and closing windows creates friction that then allows lead dust to enter After older, lead-painted windows were replaced, this family now enjoys a the air," says Rick Nevin, a con- healthier living environment with their energy-efficient vinyl windows. sultant to the National Center for of ENERGY STAR® qualified stabilize any significantly deterioHealthy Housing (NCHH). "This windows, like the vinyl replace- rated paint. Third, perform specialdust is invisible to the naked eye, ment windows offered by Simon- ized cleaning to remove any yet it can contaminate the home ton Windows. These windows are lead-contaminated dust. And fiand expose residents to this harm- a healthy choice for replacing nally, perform dust wipe tests to ful substance. older single-pane units. They're confirm the absence of lead dust "Young children, whose develop- energy-efficient and a good value hazards after the clean up." mental skills and brain functions for the investment." Nevin, the NCHH and the New are subjected to the lead dust, can "At Simonton, we advocate that York University School of Medibe especially negatively impacted. replacing older windows coated cine have been awarded a National Children can absorb the lead dust with lead-based paint with vinyl Institute of Health challenge grant from crawling on the floor where windows is a sensible step for for "Preventing Child Residential the dust settles. Toddlers put their homeowners who want to create a Lead Exposure by Window Rehands in their mouths ... and after healthier home environment," says placement." The project includes playing on the floor near a win- Gary Pember with Simonton Win- the launch of a "Windows of dow, they can easily transfer the dows. "We believe Rick's research Opportunity" website to promote lead dust into their mouths. The in- substantiates the replacement of all the many benefits of lead-safe gested lead travels through the windows coated with lead based window replacement. For addibloodstream to a child's develop- paint as a way to dramatically help tional information, visit www. ing brain, causing many types of reduce lead dust within that home. neurobehavioral damage." As such, taking the next step of installing durable, energy-efficient Nevin relates that the most common problem with lead in paint is not that a child is eating paint chips -- it's that the child may be exposed every day to unseen contaminated lead dust particles that have settled in household dust. The lead-contaminated dust is often connected with the operation of the window. According to Nevin, one of the most important long-term investments a homeowner can make for the overall safety of a family is to replace older windows, using the EPA-approved lead safe renovation guidelines. "If you live in a home built before 1978, and you have single-pane windows, replace

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April 1. 2011

Bird Feeders of Many Shapes and Sizes Can Add Aesthetic Appeal When it comes to spring and summer, many people associate certain sights and sounds with these warm weather seasons. Ocean waves crashing, luscious lawns glowing green and birds chirping are often associated with spring and summer.

feeders make a wonderful addition to any lawn or garden, adding aesthetic appeal and bringing music to your ears. Choosing a bird feeder can depend on where you'll be hanging it. But whatever the layout of your property, bird feeders come in so many shapes and sizes that you're sure to find the right fit.

While homeowners might not be able to bring the soothing sounds of the ocean to their homes, they can bring the lyrical sounds of birds chirping to their yards. Bird

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* Widow feeders: Before storm windows and screened-in windows infiltrated modern society, birdseed was simply strewn out on an open window sill. You can still invite birds to your window with a window feeder that mounts like a window box. Or, there are models that simply suction to the window itself.

* Tray (platform): These feeders are simply a big, open tray that's easy to fill and easy for birds to access seed. What's more, they can

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* Tube feeders: These just may Bird feeders come in many shapes and sizes, ensuring homeowners they can find the right fit for their yard.

accommodate several birds at one time. Most birds will jump at the chance to feast at a tray feeder. There are some who will be reluctant, however, including doves, quail, sparrows and other ground feeders. However, they can certainly dine on any seed that gets spilled over. * Hopper feeders: These have plastic or glass enclosures that dole out seed as it is needed. This is a smart choice since seed isn't


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* Nectar feeders: Some birds, like hummingbirds, orioles, house finches and some woodpeckers, prefer sweet nectar or sugar water over seed. Use a nectar feeder to satisfy their sweet tooth.

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 13

Franklin To Celebrate Earth Day April 16 Volunteers are needed for town-wide clean up; activities to follow at Beaver Pond BY ANNE PARKER The town of Franklin will celebrate Earth Day on Saturday, April 16 with a roadside clean up, spring plantings, and new environmental activities for all ages. People will work from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. The Earth Day headquarters will be located at Beaver Pond. Volunteers can report to Beaver Pond to sign up as individuals or as teams. When they are complete, volunteers can enjoy food and drink, and kids can enjoy games and activities in the afternoon at Beaver Pond. There will be vendors showing environmentally-friendly products and services. Earth Day kicks off rain or shine at 9 a.m., when volunteers start the clean up of litter and set out plants and flowers around town . After this winter’s snowfall, many of the town’s most scenic streets can be quickly restored to an attractive roadside with just a few hours of time. Volunteers should bring gloves for each person and rakes. All volunteers are asked to arrive at Beaver Pond sometime between 9-11 a.m., so that the areas most in need of a spring clean up get atten-

This year, volunteers will be given a trash bag for collecting cans, glass bottles, trash and litter. Volunteers simply leave the bags along the roadside by 12 p.m., after which Franklin DPW trucks will pick up the bagged trash. Volunteers work together to clean up Franklin for Earth Day 2010.

tion. They will be assigned a location to clean or plant flowers. There are kid-friendly sites such as playgrounds and parks to clean up. This year, the committee is streamlining the registration process. There will be no formal registration in advance, explains Ryan Jette, Director of Recreation, and Earth Day committee member. “Just come, grab a bag and gloves and get to work,� he said. There will be a board at Beaver Pond listing all locations around town that need to be cleaned. If people have a different place they want to clean up, they should tell the committee when they arrive at Beaver Pond and it will be added to the board. Or, notify the committee in advance by either calling or emailing the DPW as soon as possible.

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Last year’s clean up brought out about 200 volunteers and the trash picked up filled one 40 yard dumpster. Items such as tires, dishwashers and bikes filled up the dumpster, said Jette. More than one ton of litter was collected. This is a great way for the community to get out, help and become more aware of taking care of the environment, says Jette. “It gets people thinking a lot about protecting the environment,� he said. “It’s a great way to teach kids.� This is the day when many groups get activated for the season. Trees will be cut and debris cleaned up at the town forest, he said.

Community service certificates will be issued to youths and adults who need them. Anyone who needs a certificate should visit the booth when they are done working. Let them know, and someone from the committee will fill one out. Earth Day t-shirts will be given to the first 300 volunteers and there will be free pizza and drinks, starting at 12 p.m. for returning clean up crews. Volunteers are also needed to help pick up goods from the various stores who will donate food and drinks. The committee also needs volunteers to help run the events at Beaver Pond. Also on site will be a Waste Management recycling demonstration, environmental booths, and other demonstrations. Dean College Radio WGAO, will be on site to broadcast live from the event. Groups and businesses sponsor-


ing the event include: Waste Management, Comprehensive Environmental, Inc., CDM, Malcolm-Pirnie, Garelick Farms, Aubuchon Hardware, State Forest Advisory Council, Metcalf Materials, Hillside Nurseries, Domino’s Pizza, Bimbo Bakeries, Dunkin Donuts, Home Depot, Wal-Mart, Various boys and girls scouts, Hillside Nurseries, Franklin Garden Club, Franklin Citizen’s Rail Trail Committee, Green at Dean College, Dean Community Outreach program, Coles Tavern, and Metacomet Land Trust. For information on how you can get involved, visit the DPW webpage at: arthday.

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Page 14

April 1. 2011

Migratory Birds are Finally Returning to New England NATURE CALLS BY AMY BEAUMONT GOT WAX? With the long awaited arrival of spring, migratory birds are finally returning to New England all around us. I was fortunate enough to be at my front window recently enjoying morning tea when a flock of Cedar Waxwings suddenly appeared in the yard. While I was grabbing a camera, they were

grabbing the berries off the old holly bush. The flock was traveling with several robins, and they too seemed to love the feast. If you’ve never seen a waxwing, they are a very sleek crested bird around 7” with bold yellow tips on the tail feathers and red wax-like tips on their wing feathers. Add that mysterious black mask and you’ve got one slick looking bird. I’ve always thought of the waxwing as a ‘cape’ bird, but its range is really quite vast. They breed from southeastern

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Alaska to Newfoundland, and then south to California, Illinois and Virginia. They winter from British Columbia, the Great Lakes region and from New England southward. As for labeling the waxwing a ‘cape’ bird, it is just far easier to spot them in areas like Wellfleet. The head of the meadow trail just next door in Truro is also great spot to find and photograph these birds, although most of the images I captured while there were lousy. The attraction to these particular spots is undoubtedly the menu. Blueberries and chokecherries are their top choices – both of which are prolific all over the outer cape. Spotting the waxwings in this area is a bit more difficult. They always seem to fly high above the tree

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line, never making a close approach. I’ve tried attracting them to the deck for years with offerings of jelly and small fruits with zero luck, so the flock that showed up right in the yard was certainly a rare sighting. They decorated the holly bush quite brilliantly for a good long while, wiping out the berries until the very last one was gone. They have been described as tame, allowing a very close approach. I never found that theory to be true until I broke out the cameras and followed them around the yard. They all but ignored me while they were stuffing their faces. I was even able to capture some video, with the highlight being their bathing in the yard pond. The group hung around for

several days, wiping out any other berries they could find, and then vanished as quickly as they had appeared. Since then, I’ve seen them in smaller groups high in the trees and can often hear their highpitched call. Good thing I have the pictures to refer back to as I get the distinct feeling their visit here was a rare one. While researching the waxwing, it has been noted that they have a comical habit of passing berries from one bird to the next, until the last bird eats the prize. As for the accompanying photo, I have my prize. Welcome back waxies! Amy Beaumont is a portrait photographer and freelance writer. She can be reached at

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 15

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Team Fitness Third Annual Spinathon Benefits Best Buddies On Saturday, February 12, Team Fitness Franklin, located in the Franklin Village Plaza, sponsored its Third Annual Spinathon and raised over $18,000 for the benefit of Best Buddies, a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Over fifty riders participated in the Team Fitness three hour Spinathon by riding their bikes and, most importantly, generating thousands of dollars to benefit Best Buddies. Team Fitness provided food and drinks throughout the ride and, together with other community members, donated dozens of raffle prizes for the event. All of the money raised at the event went directly to Best Bud-

dies. Best Buddies is committed to creating opportunities for oneto-one friendships, integrated employment and leadership development for the many in our community with intellectual challenges. As a result of the efforts Team Fitness and many others, the Town of Franklin now has four Best Buddies chapters, located at James High School, Horace Mann Middle School, Annie Sullivan Middle School, and, the newest program, at Remington Middle School. In 1989, Anthony Shriver founded Best Buddies on a single college campus. Thanks to the hard work of committed volunteers, caring staff and donors, Best Buddies now boasts more than 1,500 chap-

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ters on middle school, high school and college campuses across the United States and abroad. In addition to creating opportunities for those with intellectual disabilities, Best Buddies has helped to transform the way society views people with intellectual disabilities. With the help of its staff, its members and many others in the community, Team Fitness Franklin is proud to support Best Buddies and is already looking forward to its Fourth Annual Spinathon in 2012.

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Page 16

Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Medway Gears Up for Its Summer Playground Program Teams with Franklin to Offer More Recreation Choices By J.D. O’Gara Medway will once again offer its Summer Playground Program, thanks to the help of a neighboring town of Franklin, starting July 5 and running for eight weeks through August 26.

“Medway doesn’t have its own recreation department, so Franklin has offered to team up with us. In addition to (Medway residents) going to any of the Franklin programs, we are doing the same in Medway,” says Judi LaPan.

At Choate Park, says LaPan, children can have their choice of going to any or all of the eight oneweek camps that are offered. The number of children is not limited, she says, as more staff is simply hired for more popular programs. “Last year, some weeks we had 30 kids, some 14,” she says. LaPan touts all sorts of fun activities that are planned, including a rockclimbing wall and waterslide as well as traditional camp activities of crafts and sports. Although the summer program begins at 8:30 am each day and finishes at 3:30 pm, “We do have extended dropoff and late pick-up” for working parents for $10 more per day. Although the Franklin Recre-

ation Department will be handling signups, LaPan does note that all of the camp staff in the Medway camp last year were all local kids. She wants to note that residents of Medway and Franklin “get first dibs” on open space in the program. Following is the program schedule: Week 1: 6/27/11- 7/1/11 Olympics week Week 2: 7/4/11- 7/8/11 Wild West Week Week 3: 7/11/11- 7/15/11 Super Hero Week Week 4: 7/18/11- 7/22/11 Harry Potter Week Week 5: 7/25/11- 7/29/11 Olympics week

Week 6: 8/1/11- 8/5/11 Quest Week Week 7: 8/8/11- 8/12/11 Harry Potter Week Week 8: 8/15/11- 8/19/11 Mix and Match In addition to the themed weeks, certain days of the week will mark a special activity. Tuesdays are tiedye days. Wednesdays are waterslide days. Thursdays are open for the rock-climbing wall and Fridays feature a pizza lunch. For more information on the Choate Park Camp, contact the Franklin Recreation Department, 150 Emmons Street, Franklin at (508) 520-4909 or www.franklin.

Franklin 4th of July Plans for 2011 Volunteers are Sought The first meeting of the 4th of July Committee has taken place and plans are being formulated for activities for June 30th thru July 4th. The Committee hopes, Fireworks and a Parade can be part of the festivities. They are looking forward to "Franklin Idol" and "Franklin's Got Talent " contests. A Children's Day and Children’s Parade is also in the making. As always, volunteers are needed, especially for a few hours during the parade. Anyone wishing to volunteer can call Mike

(617) 448-3799 or Warren Revell @ (508) 528-9645. Any new organizations wishing

to procure a food booth, please call Mike Kelly at the number above.

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 17

T H E P E T PA G E Save The Date - Purr-fect Cat Shelter Annual Bake Sale April 22 at Bellingham Wal-Mart Cookies, cakes, pastries and helping deserving kitties – is there a better combination?

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All proceeds from the bake sale directly benefit The Purr-fect Cat Shelter, so come enjoy a treat and support a wonderful cause in the process. The Purr-fect Cat Shelter is a non-profit, all-volunteer, no-kill organization serving the areas of Medway, Millis, Franklin, Norfolk, Bellingham and Walpole and surrounding communities. For more information about this fundraiser and the many volunteer opportunities available with the shelter, please call the shelter’s message center at (508) 533-5855 or visit www.purrfectcatshelter. org.

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Local Town Pages

Page 18

April 1. 2011

Franklin Adult Education & Community Learning is hosting Tips on Writing and Publishing Your Book BY LAURA SPINELLA Have you ever considered writing a book? Come on, tell the truth. I think there’s a book in all of us, whether it’s a family memoir about your grandmother’s journey from occupied France or a heartfelt romance transcribed from those journals you’ve been keeping for years. Everyone has a story to tell. But how do you do it, and where do you begin? For anyone interested in flirting with the fine art of

publication, Franklin Adult Education & Community Learning is offering an evening dedicated to exactly this topic. The initial idea came from Joan Borgatti who coordinates the potpourri of classes that Adult Education offers. She thought it would be a novel opportunity for Franklin residents to learn about the book writing and publishing process. I had to agree, especially after visiting a number of book clubs who

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were gracious enough to read my novel, BEAUTIFUL DISASTER. It was released this past January via Penguin Group. That tells you a little bit about me. But you had to be a fly on the wall at those gatherings to hear the real buzz about novel writing. After chatting about BEAUTIFUL DISASTER, conversations inevitably segued to how. How do you go about writing a book? And always, more to the point, how do you get it published? They’re great questions. And if I could really answer them in one evening, I’d most likely be booked at Caesars Palace, following Criss Angel. Writing ability aside, because that’s another topic entirely, publication is a multi-layered

process for which there is no definitive procedure. Think of it as NASA gone wild. I’ve always been a writer, but until eight years ago, I’d never written a book. And once I finished that first book, the learning process of publication began. Literary agents and editors, cold queries to a shoebox full of positive rejection letters, traditional publishing houses, like Penguin, or on-demand print—they all pose a learning curve. While I don’t have a magic bullet, this class is aimed at answering the basics and offering guidance to aspiring authors. Along the way to here, I’ve found that the sharing of information was my best teacher, moving me along that learning curve. On Wednesday, April 6th, it will be my pleas-

Lenten Worship at the Church of the Redeemer Sunday worship at the Anglican Church of the Redeemer, 31 Hayward Street in Franklin, is at 10 a.m. – the service reflects the themes of Lent in the Liturgy of the Word and the celebration of Holy Communion. Bible study is offered at 9 a.m. and a time of fellowship and refreshments follows the service. During Lent, the service of Evening Prayer begins at 7:30 p.m. each Wednesday.


Sunday School classes begin promptly at 9:45 a.m. The purpose of the classes is to help children understand and experience how the Bible speaks to their daily lives. Following class, the children join their families for Holy Communion. Nursery care for preschool children is available. Father Jack Potter, Youth Pastor Dan Sylvia and the all members of the congregation invite everyone to

come, to study and to worship with us. You don’t have to be a believing Christian; if you are a “seeker,” please come and seek God with us. There is ample parking and the church is accessible to all. The Church of the Redeemer is a parish of the Anglican Diocese in New England of the Anglican Church in North America. Information about the parish is available by calling (508) 346-3423 or at www.redeemeranglicanchurch. org. The Church of the Redeemer is a community of Christians who seek to follow and lead others into a relationship with Jesus Christ.


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ure to give back to the Franklin community what I’ve learned so far. Whether penning a novel is a lifelong dream or an asterisk on your bucket list, join me for writing/publishing tips and intriguing conversation. Franklin Adult Education & Community Learning is hosting Tips on Writing and Publishing Your Book with local author Laura Spinella at the Franklin High School on Wednesday, April 6th, 79 p.m. The cost is $10. For more information contact coordinator Joan Borgatti at 508-541-2100 x 3178 or email at adulted@ For more information on Laura Spinella visit her website:

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Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011

Page 19

Living Healthy Ask the Anytime Guy | Fitness Matters Expert answers to your health and wellness questions BY CHRISTOPHER CHARRON Question: Is it beneficial to get my body fat percentage checked and, if so, what method provides the best result? Answer: Whether or not you get your body fat checked depends on how meticulous you are when it comes to your own health and wellness. Some people are perfectly content to just workout and watch what happens. Others want to track and analyze everything and, as a result, like to have a starting point for body fat, amongst other things. If you’re in this latter group, then go ahead and get a test done. There are numerous ways to analyze your body fat percentage, from the very expensive to the ridiculously inexpensive, and the very accurate to the incredibly inaccurate. Some of the best methods include getting a DEXA scan, a Bod Pod measurement, or getting underwater weighed. However, these are the more expensive options, and require sophisticated equipment and skilled technicians. You could also try stepping on a Tanita scale, which uses something called bioelectrical impedance to determine your body fat percentage. Unfortunately, the accuracy is

somewhat questionable with this method. When it comes to cost, accuracy, and practicality, you really can’t go wrong with a skinfold caliper test. It takes about 5 minutes, it might cost you $10-$50 (depending on whether a consult is included or not), and it’s reasonably accurate. You just need to find a personal trainer, or other health professional, that has done hundreds or even thousands of tests. Question: I’m a recreational basketball player and someone recently recommended plyometrics to me to enhance my performance on the court. Good idea? Answer: Plyometrics involves training the neuromuscular system in order to enhance your ability to perform explosive movements. In other words, plyometric exercises are used to increase the speed and force of muscular contractions, so if you’re serious about improving all facets of your game, they would be a nice addition to your current training regimen. You just need to make sure you’re in good enough shape first. A good, solid fitness base is required, meaning you should be relatively strong, flexible,

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coordinated, and agile. The exercises tend to generate large forces, thanks to the intense, repetitive movements, so the risk of injury can be high. It’s best to do plyometrics on a soft surface, and with supervision, since proper technique is of prime importance. You also want to be careful about what exercises you select if you’re over 250 pounds. Lastly, it’s ideal if you’re well rested and injuryfree before engaging in these types of workouts. Try to find a qualified trainer that can help you incorporate plyometrics into your training and, as always, make sure he or she has experience in this particular area. Question: Being of college age, I’m curious about the latest guidelines when it comes to alcohol intake. Can you help me out with benefits (if there are some) and risks? Answer: Absolutely! If you decide to consume alcohol (and I assume you have since you’re asking the question), the current recommendations would be no more than 2 drinks per day for men and 1 drink per day for women. This is defined as “moderate consump-

Chris Charron is the club owner at Anytime Fitness in Medway. To submit a question for future articles, please contact the author at .

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stroke risk. Several studies have linked alcohol to reduced mortality from heart disease, though we can’t be sure that other lifestyle factors weren’t the primary cause. Bottom line—only you can decide how much of a role alcohol plays in your life. Just be responsible, drink moderately (if at all), and don’t drink and drive!


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tion,” though this certainly isn’t the norm for college-aged folks. As you’re probably aware, excessive alcohol intake can lead to a whole heap of problems including alcoholism, high blood pressure, elevated triglycerides (blood fats), obesity, stroke, heart failure, and even some cancers. But here’s the good news. Moderate alcohol consumption does have its health benefits as well, though this list isn’t nearly as long. The potential benefits include a slight increase in HDL (good cholesterol) and some anti-clotting properties, which may have an effect on heart attack and




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Local Town Pages

Page 20

April 1. 2011

Sports In Franklin Tri-County’s Jon McLaughlin

that of a crasher, to use his speed to get into the corners and let his teammates clean up the rest.”


In his fourth season on the ice the senior left-winger helped the Cougars to the best record in school history this past winter. And as his hockey career at Tri-County comes to an end, McLaughlin is hoping to take his skills to the next level and skate for the University of Massachusetts hockey squad next year as a freshman.

What better place to grow up a hockey fanatic than in Franklin, amongst the rich tradition of the past Panther teams that have skated at the Veteran’s Memorial Rink. Jon McLaughlin had seen it all first hand skating in the Franklin Youth Hockey Program, but decided to take his skills to the other school in town. Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School’s hockey program was in the early stages, but McLaughlin still took a chance on the school hoping that the Cougars could be a force to reckon with by the time he graduated. The Franklin native, who went on to become a three-sport star for Tri-County in football, hockey and lacrosse, got his hockey start due to his father’s love of the sport. At the tender age of five, McLaughlin laced up the skates for the first time and it has been hard pressed to take them off some 12 years later.

Hockey player Jon McLaughlin uses his speed to get the puck into position for Tri-County teammates.

Originally he took to the ice as a goal scorer, but through the years his offensive numbers have dwindled. Not because of his lack of skill, but to his role change for the Cougars. “Jon’s a dedicated, hard worker who gives you 100-percent in practice as well as in the game. He’s the type of athlete that every coach dreams of having and he’s a great role model for the younger players,” TC Hockey Coach Mark Spillane said. “His primary role is

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“He’s one of those athletes that truly loves the sport,” the coach said. “He’ll give you everything possible and if he could improve upon his talent, he’d be phenomenal on the college level.” In addition to skating for the Cougars for four years, McLaughlin has also played midfielder on the lacrosse team for three seasons and has been a running back as well as an outside linebacker for the football team for the past two years. On the gridiron McLaughlin has been part of the Tri-County team that went to the Division 4 Super Bowl and was presented the team’s Unsung Hero Award last fall.

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The girls swimming team at Franklin High is only two years old and has yet to win a meet in 15

outings, but coach Colleen Flood remains optimistic about her squad’s future, primarily because of some key intangibles. “No one quits. The girls are dedicated, and they’ve stayed loyal to their commitment,’’ said Flood, a social studies teacher at the high school who swam butterfly and freestyle events in high school and college. “The girls have great attitudes. They look to encourage one another, they’ve strived to improve and they’ve dealt with adversity.’’ When the Panthers began their initial voyage as a varsity swim team two years ago, they competed independently, losing all six of their meets. This season they dropped all nine of their Hockomock League meets but several of their contests went right to the wire. Flood is acutely aware that an 0-9 record isn’t anything to write home about, but she does see some blue sky on the horizon. “We went from 16 girls two years ago to 21 this season,’’ Flood noted. “Lots of freshmen came out, giving us some potentially good swimmers for the future. Many of our kids posted times that were personal bests. But, the keys to a winning program are developing depth and talent, gaining experience, getting the girls to compete in out-of-season programs and adding more pool time for practice.’’ While most of Franklin’s opponents practice about 10 hours a week, the Panthers had only three hours of pool time at the Hockomock YMCA. That translates to only an hour of practice three times

a week. “Most of our meets are all on the road,’’ Flood said. “We were able to get two home meets this year — one at the Hockomock YMCA and the other was in Milford. The YMCA has been extremely generous, giving us free practice time.’’ Two swimmers who performed superbly at home and away meets were co-captains Katie Cameron and Alyssa Carle. A senior, Cameron competed in the 100meter butterfly, the 100 freestyle and the 50 freestyle. Only a junior, Carle swam all four events but had her best efforts in the 100 breaststroke and the 200 individual medley. “Katie will be sorely missed next season,’’ Flood said. “She was a terrific leader, always encouraging our younger swimmers. She has good athletic ability and was always willing to learn. She finished fourth in the 50 freestyle at the Hockomock League Championships in a time of 28.34.’’ Flood labels Carle a “great competitor who’s very coachable.’’ “It’ll be nice having Alyssa back next year,’’ Flood said. “She’s been a captain for two years and has had some solid efforts. She won the 100 breaststroke at the Hockomock League Championships and also at the Sectional Meet. She also was first at the conference meet in the 200 individual medley and fifth in that event at the Sectionals.’’ Carle’s best times were 1:08.09 in the 100 breaststroke and 2:15.03 in the 200 individual medley. She saved her best effort for last, however, when she finished second in the 100 breaststroke at the state meet. Her time of 1:07.45 was a personal best. She also managed a 13th place in the 200 individual medley at the States. Her time was 2:15.56. Senior Emily Donahue and sophomores Jessica Beaver and Haley McCarthy also had quality seasons. Donahue swam the butterfly and all freestyle events, Beaver battled in the freestyle and breaststroke and McCarthy focused on the 50 and 100 freestyle events. “Emily was very versatile and a consistent scorer,’’ Flood said. “Jessica is athletic and very coachable and Haley is a hard-worker who could be our top sprinter next season.’’

Local Town Pages

April 1. 2011 Beaver lowered her time in the 500 freestyle from 8:35 to 7:30 and McCarthy managed a personal best of 29.3 seconds in the 50 freestyle. Six underclassmen Flood will be counting on to help the Panthers

of Pennsylvania. It’s a good bet her Panthers will mirror their coach’s tenacity in their third year and get that elusive first victory for Franklin High’s youngest sports program.

Where Are They Now?

Mitchell was even better on a baseball diamond. A true gem.

Franklin’s Mitchell: Two-Sport Star Played Minor League Baseball BY KEN HAMWEY John Mitchell has lived in Franklin for 14 years and greatly admires the championship traditions the town’s high school teams have established.

Franklin swim coach Colleen Flood flanked by Katie Cameron, left, and Alyssa Carle.

move into the win column are junior Siobhan Moynihan in the breaststroke, sophomore Melissa Piana in the 200 individual medley and 100 butterfly, and freshmen Elise Rivera (backstroke), Abhilasha Boruah (breaststroke), Cynthia Poirier (freestyle) and Casey Lazerek (breaststroke and freestyle). “Our boys’ team won three meets this season, the first time they’ve moved into the win column,’’ Flood noted. “The girls lost several meets that were close. Being more competitive in our second year created some fun for the girls. I’m hoping we get more girls out next year; the high 20s would be good and I’ll stay with a no-cut policy.’’ Flood, who coached as an assistant in New Jersey for five years, was very competitive when she swam for the University

Page 21

Sports fans in Franklin no doubt would have liked what Mitchell brought to the table when the diminutive 5-foot-7, 160-pounder played hockey and baseball at Framingham South in the early 1980s. Mitchell sparked the Flyers to the Bay State League hockey crown in 1981, scoring 14 goals and assisting on 10 others from his right wing slot.

He led the BSL in home runs (7) and batting average (.415) in 1981, was a league all-star and the Flyers’ MVP. He hit .430 for the Framingham Legion and went 9for-16 for the Milford Town Team, making him the leading hitter in the 1981 tourney in Johnstown, Pa. As his career in Framingham was entering its final lap, Mitchell, at age 19, signed a contract with the Milwaukee Brewers. “I signed for a $7,500 bonus and was paid a salary of $600 a month,’’ Mitchell recalled. “I started in the Brewers rookie league in Pikeville, Ky., and ended in Class A in Beloit, Wis. My minor league career lasted only two years. It was fun and it also

was frustrating but I have no regrets. I got to a level that lots of kids dream about.’’ A centerfielder with unbelievable speed, Mitchell hit .270 in Pikeville and seemed destined to be a productive prospect in Beloit. “There were some changes with managers,’’ Mitchell said. “I didn’t get much playing time and was used strictly in late-inning situations. I got released after the season and that was tough, a real empty feeling. I got to the pro level but I never got a chance to fulfill my dream.’’ When Mitchell was a freshman at Framingham South, he faced a

SPORTS IN FRANKLIN continued to page 22

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said. “We had good hockey players. Guys like Simpson and John Pellegrini on my line, Billy Masionis in goal and Peter Taglianetti on defense. Peter played on three Stanley Cup champions with the Penguins.’’

continued from page 21

similar setback. He was told he wasn’t good enough. “The freshman baseball coach said I didn’t have good skills and he cut me,’’ Mitchell said. “I eventually went to Winchendon Academy for a year, then returned to South.’’ That’s when Mitchell blossomed. Although South’s baseball teams were only .500 contingents during Mitchell’s era, he was dynamic to watch, especially on the base paths. His speed to first base was timed at 3.8 seconds and he led the BSL in stolen bases. “I was an aggressive hitter, always quick to jump on a good pitch,’’ he said. “I rarely struck out and I got my share of doubles and triples.’’ His best game came against Milton as a junior. He hit a pair of home runs and had five RBIs in a 16-9 triumph. Mitchell managed to taste a championship when coach Bob Bell’s Flyers edged Natick for the hockey crown in 1981. The Flyers were 14-3-1.

Mitchell played for Bell in hockey and the legendary Bino Barreira in baseball. He admired and respected both.

John Mitchell, owner of ATA Fire and Flood Restoration, learned to give all-out effort playing high school and professional hockey.

“My best game in hockey came in a 5-5 tie against Natick,’’ Mitchell recalled. “The crowd at West Suburban Arena was the largest in that rink’s history. We were up, 3-0, then Natick rallied for five straight and we trailed, 53. After Luke Simpson scored for us, I got my second goal and we managed to escape with a tie.’’ The hockey title was Mitchell’s top thrill in high school. “As I got older, I realized how meaningful that was,’’ Mitchell


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“They both knew how to motivate their players and they knew their sport,’’ he said. “They were very strong figures.’’ When Mitchell played in the Brewers system, he was a teammate of Dale Svuem, who later became a Red Sox coach. “Playing for Beloit, I got to see many Milwaukee games,’’ Mitchell said. “I got to meet pros like Robin Yount and Cecil Cooper.’’ After Mitchell’s release, he returned home, started a business (ATA Fire and Flood Restoration) and moved to Franklin. Mitchell and his wife Joan have three daughters — Arianne, 21; Taylor, 18; and Alex, 14. Calling his late father (George) and mother (June) role models, Mitchell spends his leisure time with his family and also plays golf. A two-handicap golfer who shoots in the mid-70s, he was club champ at Marlborough Country Club in 2004. “When I played in high school and in the pros, I gave an all-out effort and I played to win,’’ Mitchell said. “I always tried to enjoy the moment and when our teams got beat, I learned to lose with dignity.’’ John Mitchell was a small, feisty and aggressive athlete. A perfect example that good things come in small packages.

Like Mother,

April 1. 2011

Like Daughter: Franklin High’s Track Star Megan Ross

As a freshman FHS Coach Paul Trovato saw something in the young athlete after she ran her first 1000 meter race. He quickly moved her to the 1-mile, which soon after became the 2-mile – Ross’s bread and butter.


Coming into her season year, Ross knew this would be the chance she would have and dedi-

It was a sport that Franklin’s Megan Ross really had no interest in participating in. When she woke up that morning she had all intentions of trying out for the girls basketball team, however when she arrived at the field house she realized that she had forgotten her sneakers. Having already missed a day on the court, the now Franklin High School senior opted for track and field. The rest is history. This past season, Ross captured the Hockomock League Championship in the 2-mile, shattering the league record by 10 seconds with a time of 11:06. The Franklin senior then went on to take the MIAA Division 1 South Championship in the same event lowering her time to 11:03 and the following week won the All State title becoming the first 2-mile champion in the history of Franklin High School with a staggering time of 10:59. While capturing all three titles was great, Ross had an alternative motive – to take down her mother. Mom was track star in her day at Blackstone Millville running the 2-mile in 11:01; Megan wanted nothing more than to beat her mother’s time. “Coming into the season my goal was to break my mother’s record and run the 2-mile in under 11 minutes. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be able to accomplish that feat,” Ross said. “And to win the states at the same time, I couldn’t believe that I captured both in one race. It was exciting beyond belief.”


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cated herself to becoming the best runner possible. “This year I came into the season being in a lot better shape than I had been in the past,” she said. “I trained a lot this past summer, went to camps and increased my running from six miles a day to around10.” Her coach firmly believes that it was a contributing factor to her success. “Megan was always a very competitive runner, but refocused her efforts to elevate her performance to get to get to the next level,” Trovato said. “She has an unbelievable work ethic and knows what it takes to be a great runner.” In addition to upping her mother, Ross also wanted to be successful in the 2-mile so that she can get into college. “I have to pay for college on my own, so I had to find a way to help myself,” she said. “I was good at soccer (Ross played two seasons for Franklin before moving over to cross country) and a bit obsessed with the sport, but not good enough to go anywhere with it. Running track has the potential to open doors.” The Franklin athlete, who would like to attend either the University of New Hampshire or East Carolina University, definitely has the potential to run in college according to her coach. “She’ll be an outstanding college runner,” the coach said. “She’s a very fast runner, the longer the race the better she be.”

117 Main St, Medway, MA 02053 (p) 508.533.3350 - (f) 508.533.3351

April 1. 2011

Retiring In Todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Economy The good news is that weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re living longer. But, from a financial perspective, thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s also the bad news. The question is what can you do to prepare for retirement in the midst of uncertain and changing economic climates? While there are no easy answers, the more you prepare today, the better off you will be tomorrow.

Identify your goals and spending The first step is to determine how much money you will need during retirement by quantifying your monthly spending. Many financial advisors estimate that retirees will need 70% of their current income during retirement to maintain their existing lifestyle. If your goal is to spend your retirement traveling, dining at quality restaurants, golfing and sailing, then 70% may not be sufficient.

Local Town Pages found in any qualified retirement account. Annuities are another possibility, because in some cases they can provide an income stream for life.

Social Security. Social Security is a pay-as-yougo system, but was never designed to be a primary source of income. You will want to prepare your retirement income goals with Social Security as a supplement, if you are eligible.

Compare your resources and goals When you compare what you expect to need at retirement with what you expect to have, you will likely have a gap. To fill it, you may choose to save more, work longer or scale back your goals. If you are investing conservatively, it


may be advisable to add more risk to your portfolio, depending on your age and other factors. You may be able to increase returns and control risk by diversifying your investments.

Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t wait By planning early, you may even find that you have more income during retirement than you need.


The information provided is that of Ryan D. Marini, CLTC, a financial representative of Centinel Financial Group, LLC in Needham Heights, MA and a proud resident of Franklin. Individuals are advised to seek the counsel of their own tax, accounting and legal professionals for information regarding their own specific situation. Registered Representative/ Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through Signator Investors, Inc. Member, FINRA, SIPC, a Registered Investment Advisor. Centinel Financial Group, LLC is independent of Signator Investors, Inc.

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Retirement plans While some employees may have traditional pensions, most of us today have defined contribution plans, such as 401(k) or 403(b) plans, which are selfdirected. You decide how much to contribute and where to invest it. Given the advantages of employer retirement plans, it is usually advisable to contribute as much as possible, especially if there is a company match, as long as you diversify your investments. Diversification does not ensure a profit or guarantee against a loss.

Personal savings Individual Retirement Arrangements, or IRAs, are one popular option, as they offer advantages similar to 401(k) plans. Contributions to Roth IRAs are made with after-tax dollars, grow tax-free, and provide a tax-free distribution, for qualified distributions at retirement, but there are income restrictions along with early penalties


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