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Concord Currents: What's happening in Concord

Posted by  August 21, 2013 04:10 PM

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Outdoor Water Use Restriction – Remains In Effect

The Outdoor Water Use Restriction, as declared by the Public Works Commission on July 18 remains in effect.

This week’s forecasted hot weather in combination with the lack of rain over the past two weeks is likely to trigger a substantial increase in Concord’s water demand. The public works department asks that you only use water outdoors twice a week.

Failure to maintain this balance may trigger a need for the Public Works Commission to elevate the Seasonal Water Demand Management Plan to Emergency levels– effectively prohibiting all outdoor water use.

For updates and additional information on Outdoor Water Use Restrictions under Concord’s Seasonal Water Demand Management Plan, visit


The joint Concord and Concord-Carlisle School Committees meet on Tuesday, Aug. 27 at 4 p.m. at the Ripley Building on Meriam Street.

Summer is over

School starts Friday, Sept. 6. Please be extra careful as children will be boarding buses in the morning and running home at the end of the day.

Summer’s end party at Barefoot Books

August 31 Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Barefoot Books - 80 Thoreau St. Join us on the last day of August as we celebrate summer's end in the morning and kick into gear for the school year in the afternoon!

Summer Story Time, 10:30am
Summer Craft Time, 11:00am
Let's Go Fishing, 11:30am
Paint-Your-Own Pencil Holder, 2pm
Back-to-School Story Time, 3pm
Make-Your-Own Backpack, 3:30pm

New exhibit at Frame-ables

September 7 – 27, 9:30am - 5:30pm Tuesday through Saturday, 111 Thoreau St.

See the illustrations of Ed Koehler during the month of September. His complex yet whimsical drawings reflect his passion for the jazz world, which he was first introduced to in the 1940’s. Koehler is a lifetime member of the Acton Jazz Café and acts as a roadie, someone who sets up performances, for jazz musicians. Koehler, who has a professional background as an architect, first started drawing at the age of 8 when his mother would bring him book covers to draw. This led Koehler to create artwork for over 75 years. The Lincoln-based artist has shown across New England and is currently working on a mural at the VA Hospital in Bedford.

Savings by sunlight! Incentive program extended to Oct. 31

More than 300 residents have signed up for a solar site evaluation and 60 homeowners have already signed contracts for a total of more than 500 kilowatts in solar capacity. According to the municipal light plant, that means the town is halfway to the goal of 100 homes, at which point Astrum Solar, our installer partner, will donate $10,000 to the Town for a solar PV (photovoltaic) system. And we have achieved the lowest pricing level under the program.

Important things to know:

1. East, south and west-facing roofs with good sun are candidates for solar.
2. The Light Plant is looking into allowing no-money-down, low monthly payment equipment leases for solar. A final decision in mid-September.
3. The deadline for the program has been extended from July 31 to Oct.
31. All contracts must be signed by that date to get preferential pricing.
4. The Light Plant rebate may be reduced or eliminated at the end of this year and the bonus depreciation for businesses also expires at the end of 2013, and the State is revamping its SREC (solar renewable energy certificate) program in early 2014.

New restaurant in old supermarket space

With the sale of the West Concord Supermarket by the Mandriolis to Jim Canty, a new restaurant is in the planning stages. The Planning Board will take up the site plan and parking requirements at its Sept. 10 meeting and the Board of Appeals will hear from the owners at its Sept. 12 meeting. The plan calls for a complete renovation and restoration of the large Commonwealth Avenue building into a restaurant serving three meals with an alcohol license.

Concord Library acquires house next door

The Trustees of the Corporation of the Concord Free Public Library announced that it has purchased the half-acre historic property next door to the main library building. The house, at 151 Main St. is large, about 7,000 sq. ft., according to library Director Kerry Cronin.

Corporation board President Sherry Litwack noted, “this property can, after some adaptation, provide much needed flexibility to meet current and future needs.” She said a “variety of interesting rooms of all sizes could be adapted for programs, exhibit space, offices and a variety of other uses.”

Cronin said the sale was completed in late June, so the board has not yet determined the particular activities or uses of the new space.

Litwack said the board “entered into this recent transaction with the support of the town…to sustain a larger library infrastructure.”

COA Art Space News

Our exhibitor until Sept. 6 is long-time Concord resident, Mart Doig. Mart received her first camera at the age of eight, and she has been taking pictures ever since. The theme of her exhibit is “Water, Water Everywhere.” Many of the photographs were taken during her travels to Australia, Greece, and Great Britain. Mart’s favorite pictures are those that show a different perspective than the usual; a number of her photos are framed by a window or a doorway. Mart has had numerous exhibits of her work including shows in Boston and New Hampshire, and locally at Emerson Hospital and the Concord Public Library.

Added COA van trips

Beginning in September, the COA will be offering a shopping trip to Trader Joe’s on the fourth Thursday of the month in place of the Stop and Shop trip in response to popular demand. Trader Joes is located in a shopping plaza that also includes Pier One Imports and Staples, so it will be possible for you to visit these stores as well.

Extra Wednesday Van

Also, beginning in September, we are going to operate two vans on Wednesdays. There are so many activities at Harvey Wheeler on Wednesdays that the van is needed most of the day just to bring folks to and from the COA, omitting other uses. If you have been avoiding booking a doctor’s appointment or running other errands on a Wednesday because you know that it is hard to schedule the van, you should now be able to do so. As always, our van service is first-come, first-served, so please make your appointments for rides as soon as you know your needs. We ask that you try to limit your non-medical requests to two per week.

Ag Day in Concord: Fall Farm and Garden Fair

Come celebrate the harvest and meet your local food growers at the Farm and Garden Fair on Sept. 7 and 8 at the annual Ag Day from 10 am-2 pm in Concord Center, followed by an afternoon exploring Food Garden tours of community and home gardens, with demos, hands-on harvesting fun and a Kids Film Fest at Emerson Umbrella. On Sept. 8 the Fair continues with a wide array of farm-based activities and how-to demonstrations from hayrides to harvesting. Details at

Free Concord River Pontoon Boat Rides Wednesday Sept. 11 2:30pm to 3:30 p.m. Martha Rohan has generously offered to take Concord seniors on a scenic ride on the Concord River in her pontoon boat. Three rides are scheduled - one each in July, August and September. Each ride will take one hour and Martha will provide lemonade and a cookie to each senior. The meeting place is the South Bridge Boat House at 502 Main Street in Concord. Each boat ride is limited to 20 people each, so please call the COA to reserve your spot. There is no charge and the ride will be cancelled in the case of rain. Please note there will be no COA staff on these boat rides.

COA Cinema, Fridays at 2 p.m.

Aug. 23 – Anna Karenina
Oscar winner Tom Stoppard penned this adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's classic novel about a vibrant and beautiful 19th-century Russian aristocrat who enters into a passionate and forbidden love affair with the well-heeled Count Vronsky. The film stars Keira Knightley and Jude Law.

Fridays at the Concord Museum

Aug. 9 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Celebrate summer at the Museum after-hours at Special Summer Fridays. Learn more about why Concord is one of the best places in the world to study climate change on a tour of Early Spring, or sit back, relax, and enjoy our Exploring Concord film. Meet local nature photographer Alice Wellington, whose images are featured in Early Spring; signed prints will be available for purchase. Light refreshments provided; cash bar. No reservations required. Free with Museum admission; Members free.

The Old Manse - 269 Monument Street.

Free concerts under the tent. Join us for live music under the tent at the Manse. It's a lovely way to spend a summer Sunday afternoon.
Aug 25: TBA
Sept 1: Lorraine and Bennett Hammond, Claude Galinsky
Sept 8: TBA
Sept 15: John Ferullo, Jon Swenson, Betsi Mandrioli, and Bob Morse
Sept 22: The Chadbourne Chanticleers
Sept 29: TBA
Oct 6: TBA

At the Concord Museum

A ground-breaking exhibition, “Early Spring: Henry Thoreau and Climate Change,” exploring three centuries of careful observation of seasonal natural phenomena in Concord, which has made it one of the best places in the world to study climate change. The exhibition also provides an extraordinary opportunity to examine the Concord Museum’s renowned Thoreau collection that includes the desk on which Thoreau wrote Walden, together with examples of his original field notes, journal recordings, seasonal charts, and botanical specimens; much of which has never before been exhibited together. Free with Museum admission. The exhibit runs through Sept. 15.

New interim Thoreau principal named

Nancy Peterson has been named interim principal at Thoreau School starting in early August. Superintendent Diana Rigby announced that Peterson will replace Kelly Clough, who resigned at the end of the school year. The search for a new principal will begin in January 2014. Peterson recently worked as interim principal at the Davis Elementary School in Bedford for two years. Rigby said the public will have a chance to meet Peterson in the near future. No date was announced.

Betsy Levinson can be reached at

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