Thursday, February 27, 2014

Fine Arts Theatre Taking Questions

The Fine Arts Theatre [Place] has been fundraising for a while, but it's just not getting enough traction. So many of you have questions about it all before you decide to sign any money away. Those questions need to be answered, but first they need to be asked.

Fine Arts Theatre Place is taking questions until midnight on Friday, go to their Facebook page. I would have posted this sooner, but I just saw it now. So get your questions out, and don't make it the easy ones. Also, if you have any photos of the theater, they're looking for those, too.

Ochre Blue Gallery

I heard on the grapevine that Ochre Blue Gallery on Nason St. will be closing. I think I heard that they're trying to relocate to another town.

We hate seeing that corner empty. It's a prominent location.

Design-Your-Own-Magic-Card Contest!

I can't claim to know anything about Magic the Gathering, but I've heard people talk about it. I thought there might be some people out there interested. 

So our local comic book shop, Legends, is having a contest to raise funds to get themselves a new (and more permanent) sign. Yea, we don't really want them to go anywhere, so we think a fixed sign is a good idea.  

If you know people who are interested in the game, here's the information:

(To fix our sign and hopefully make a nice donation)

This year is full of firsts for us here at Legends. Between starting a Magic the Gathering club at the local middle school to starting Saturday events there is no shortage new fun to be had. And with this new fun also comes a new contest, hopefully something we can start doing annually!
We need your help designing a new magic card. One for your favorite card shop "Legends". Art, flavor text, and card ability are all designed by you! Attached to this form is our template for said new card. Entry to the contest is $5 due when you drop your art off with either Bobby or Tiana at the Fowler Middle School Magic Club (if you are a student, 2-4 Mondays in the cafeteria) or Legends Comix and Games (94 a Main Street Maynard). All entries are due by April 24 at 6pm. Donation based voting (held at Legends Comix) will begin Midnight April 26th and last until May 4th 10pm. All Donations will be going towards replacing our sign for the historical building. Any excess will be donated to a charity to be determined in the future."

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

New Photography Show at Gallery 7

I saw a few of the photographs while I was in Gallery 7 picking up some artwork. Very interesting. If you get a chance, stop in. 

On Display Feb. 25 - April 5

Gallery Seven presents “About Face” a photographic exhibition juried by Paula Tognarelli, Executive Director and Curator at the Griffin Museum of Photography in 
Winchester, MA and Nick Johnson co-owner of Gallery Seven and instructor at the New England School of Photography in Boston. Over 150 images were submitted and 28 were chosen by the jurors. 

Artists: Chuck Beisch, Barbara Burr, Catherine Caddigan, Bill Davison, Pippi Ellison, Will Faraci, Michael Frassinelli, Ed Friedman, Erik Gehring,Lauren Geshel, Marv
Goldschmitt, Ruby Hazzard, Michael Joseph, Ron Labbe, Rebecca Middleton, Bruce D. Millet, Astrid Reischwitz, Nancy Roberts, Katya Rosenzweig, and Tony Schwartz.

IMAGE: Untitled by Lauren Geshel

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

"Taste of Maynard" Sunday, March 2nd from 4 - 7 p.m.

I'm sharing the information for the "Taste of Maynard".

Please join the Maynard Education Foundation (MEF) for our 12th Annual "Taste of Maynard" on Sunday, March 2nd from 4 - 7 p.m. at the Maynard Elks.

This year's "Taste" will feature delicious food from some of our familiar, favorite local restaurants - and well as some new ones!

Entertainment will once again be provided by "Shoot the Cat."

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the "Taste" - it is a very fun, family-friendly event that raises funds for MEF's grant program for teachers and administrators. 

For more information and to purchase your tickets online, please visit:
Please also "Like" the Maynard Education Foundation's Facebook page.

Psst! The Theater Might Be Open in the Spring!

This blog wouldn't earn its name if I didn't share with you information that I've heard in passing, but that might not be completely accurate.

It seems to me that I heard recently that the Maynard Fine Arts Theater [Place] is hoping to open the end of April. Of course, I'll let you know if I hear of anything new that comes up. In the meantime, you can "like" them on Facebook—perhaps their postings will offer more accurate information. ;-)

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

The Assabett Valley Food Co-Op is a Little Closer to a Reality

As any smart business being run as a cooperative would do, the Assabet Village Food Co-op is raising money for a feasibility test to make sure they're making intelligent decisions. They only have $2,761 left to get their matching grant. Here's the latest from them:

"As you consider your own reasons for supporting the Assabet Village Food Cooperative, we hope you will also consider donating funds to help us meet our $10,000 matching grant. We have only $2,761 left to raise toward that goal, bringing us one step closer to opening the store!"


I chipped in. Want to be part of making something local successful? 
Chip in! Here's the link.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Celebrate Community. Shop Locally.

The first employment of a campaign to remind Maynard to keep their money local has been put in place. It's an idea that is part of the Revitalize Maynard Collaborative, which I'm part of, and we hope to get some version of it out this year.

We'r'e also trying to put together a directory of Local businesses and services. By "local" we're talking about businesses that are locally owned and operated. We think it will help remind people of what we have right here in our own town.

For every $100 that you spend in a town, a local business keeps about $73 in the community, where as a non-local business will only keep about $43 in the community.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

McDonald's Closed Temporarily

Though I never eat there, it is in Maynard, so I have to let you know about it. The local McDonald's has a sign on the door that says "closed" and driveways locked. It seems there has been a water leak.

Monday, February 10, 2014

A Blind Date... With a Book

I thought this was a cute idea put together at the Maynard Public Library by the Friends of the Maynard Public Library (AKA "the Friends"). In celebration of Valentine's Day, they are offering "a blind date with a book."

Love-themed books have been wrapped up and are labeled with whom the content is targeted at: young adult or adult. I love the idea that you have no idea what you're going to get. I love that you might discover a gem that you wouldn't have otherwise.

This is an absolutely charming idea.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Maynard Parking Deck Closed Temporarily for Safety

The Board of Selectmen will hold a Public Hearing on Tuesday, February 18, 2014 at 7:30pm regarding the Parking Deck at the corner of Nason and Summer Streets.  The Board would like to hear from the public and plan the next steps based on the concerns and responses.

On January 15, 2014 falling concrete was reported.  After DPW and Facilities responded to the report and inspected the deck the decision was make to close the upper deck for safety concerns and to determine the next steps.

They are especially looking for input from local businesses to better understand the impact of the parking deck being closed, and have created a survey that will be distributed door to door. However, the Assistant Town Administrator has asked for assistance in  encouraging folks to complete and return the surveys. If you are a business owner, please be sure you get the survey and return it to Becky Mosca(, by February 7, 2014 via e-mail, fax, mail or in-person drop-off.

I am including images of the survey. You'll have to forgive me if they look bad; I can't figure out how to attach a file, so I'm just including screen grabs. Whatever the case, you can see what the questions are and get the answers back to Town Hall. 

The meeting will take place in the Michael J. Gianotis meeting room at Town Hall (upper level), 195 Main Street.  Any questions regarding this hearing can be directed to the Selectmen’s Office at 978-897-1302 or via email to

Esteban Barriga Should Go to the Prom With Ellen DeGeneres!

This is taken from (original link)

Esteban Rueda, 17, stands with a white board where his classmates wrote all of the reasons why Ellen DeGeneres should go to prom with him.
After winter break, thoughts of prom season can bring stress and drama to high school students. It’s easy to get caught up in the mess of tuxedos, hairspray, and glitter that surrounds the rite of passage, but this year, the town of Maynard is showing prom isn’t always about what’s on the outside.
Esteban Barriga, a 17-year-old Maynard High senior with autism, has a very special date in mind for the big dance. Barriga wants to go to prom with Ellen DeGeneres, and the people of Maynard are working to make his dream a reality.
After Maribel Rueda, Barriga’s mother, reached out to her friends and his school about the dream, a video campaign starring Barriga and the citizens of Maynard was launched.
Through word of mouth, Barriga’s high school classmates and teachers, the fire department, police department, local McDonald’s, a married gay couple from Everett and more have contributed over thirty videos to his cause, all urging Ellen to “say yes to Esteban.”
The clips are being compiled into one video that will be posted online in the coming days and spread across social media to reach Ellen. A spokesperson for the show could not immediately be reached.
Before Barriga had settled on the daytime talk show host as his date, he did not want to attend the dance.
“He said, ‘I’m not going to prom because I don’t have any friends. I don’t have anybody,’” Rueda, said. “It broke my heart.”
Now, Barriga has a whole town behind him.
“It’s been an unbelievable experience because here’s this kid who thought he had no friends at high school, who thought he was on his own—now he’s suddenly the most popular kid in school,” Rueda said.
Bryan Kiley, a Maynard High junior, filmed all of the clips at the high school. He met Barriga last year in gym class, where the two played basketball together every day. This year, Kiley decided to sign up for Best Buddies at the high school, a local chapter of a global organization dedicated to creating friendship and supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and requested to be Barriga’s buddy because they got along so well.
“He’s always funny; he’s always smiling,” Kiley said of Barriga. “He’s always in a good mood and puts people in a good mood.”
Kiley filmed whole classes saying “Ellen, say yes to Esteban!” and also interviewed individual students for the video.
“A lot of people thought it was a really cool thing and really wanted to see it happen,” Kiley said.
Barriga loves to watch The Ellen DeGeneres Show every day. His three dreams, according to his mom, are to be an actor, meet Jimmy Fallon, and go to prom with Ellen.
“He’ll say ... ‘Mom, she’s so funny!’” Rueda said.
One of the videos features a guy dancing like Ellen and trying to convince her that Esteban is a good dancer. Others feature foreign language classes at the high school yelling “say yes to Esteban” in French and Spanish. Aubuchon Hardware in Maynard also contributed a video.
“We see people all day long and we figured it was a good thing to do,” said John Bairos, store manager. “I don’t particularly know the kid but I know a lot of kids that work for me, and some of them know him … The more publicity, the better the chance he has of accomplishing it.”
The experience has especially touched Rueda because they have only been living in the town for a year.
“In high school, [students with autism] are bullied, they’re excluded … they don’t have many friends,” she said. “They’re outcasts, if you will. I hate using that word but it’s true. For me as a mother, to see the response Esteban is getting, says a lot about the place I moved to.
“It was the best decision I made, to move,” Rueda said. “It completely changed my life and Esteban’s life. We have never been so welcome in a town.”
As a volunteer with Autism Speaks, a leading autism science and advocacy organization, in Latino communities around Boston, Rueda knows Barriga might not have much to look forward to after high school. He will attend graduation this year but will stay in school until he is 22. After that, “his life is very uncertain,” Rueda said. “You lose a lot of services you usually have.”
Because of that, the video will include a reminder about the often-forgotten adults living with autism. Mariana Barriga, Esteban’s 7-year-old sister who is narrating the video, will end by asking Ellen to help spread autism awareness so teenagers like her brother, who will eventually become adults, have a place to go after prom.
“Whether Ellen says yes or no I think my son will not have a problem going to prom,” Rueda said. “I think he’s learning a lot form this. He’s learning he’s not alone.”
To learn more the effort, visit Esteban's Facebook page here.
Maggie Quick can be reached at Follow her on Twitter at @MaggieQuick.