Interested in Learning More about Melrose Birth to Five?

melrose-birth-to-five

Do you have a child in Melrose under the age of 6 and want to get involved in the community? The Melrose Birth to Five Advisory Committee is currently looking for additional committee members.

The Melrose Birth to Five advisory committee was formed in 2013 to serve as a resource for parents and caregivers of children under the age of six. In addition to providing residents with updated information about ongoing events for young children, the group has created a Kindergarten Basics program for parents and sponsored numerous community events, such as the New and Expectant Parent Expo in March, the opening of the Melrose Common Playground, Melrose Kids Club, family concerts at Memorial Hall and throughout the city, and the Community Swap Day in October.

If you are interested in learning more, please email Mike Lindstrom in the Mayor’s Office at mlindstrom@cityofmelrose.org. If you would like to attend the next advisory group meeting, it will be held on Monday, September 19th in the basement conference room of the Melrose Public Library from 7pm-8pm.

More information about Melrose Birth to Five can be found at www.cityofmelrose.org/birthtofive.

“Sharrows” Increase Driver and Bicycle Safety Throughout Melrose

sharrows-1

This post was written by summer intern Michael O’Neill.

If you have driven on any of Melrose’s newly resurfaced roads lately, you have probably noticed some new markings. Sharrows—officially known as Shared Lane Markings—are arrows painted onto roadways that indicate that cyclists are allowed on the road just as much as motor vehicles are. This means that motorists must give bikes the same space, right of way, and general treatment they would for other cars. Cyclists must obey the same traffic laws that motorists do.

The increasing frequency of “sharrows” (a portmanteau of “share” and “arrow”) on Melrose roads is helping keep cyclists and motorists safe, and residents should be aware of exactly what they entail. They are not separate bike lanes; rather, they are a reminder that bikes and cars are sharing the lane equally.

sharrows-2

The main goal of these sharrows is to increase safety for bike riders and automobile drivers alike. The Melrose Pedestrian & Bicycling Advisory Committee has been advocating for their use in Melrose, and now several of the newly repaved roads in Melrose feature sharrows. “I think the greatest benefit to the sharrows is how they alert and remind motorists that our streets and throughways are shared environments,” says committee member Carol Naczas. “As communities strive to improve and diversify our public spaces, it’s important to provide outreach and education.” Other safety benefits of sharrows, according to the National Association of City Transportation Officials, are reminding drivers and cyclists to maintain a safe distance from one another, encouraging safe passing by motorists, and reducing the number of bikes on sidewalks.

Sharrows are a simple, inexpensive way to clarify the rules of road and remind both motorists and bicyclists to be mindful of one another. Look for these pavement markings around Melrose, including on Franklin Street, Lebanon Street, Essex Street, and the Lynn Fells Parkway.

Melrose Drama Cabaret Night on September 23

melrose-drama-cabaret-night2

Come join the award winning Melrose Drama program as they kick off the 2016/2017 Theater Season with a special evening of fun and music at the “Melrose Drama Cabaret!” The Cabaret will take place on September 23rd at 7:00 PM at the Melrose Performing Arts Center located at the Melrose Veterans Memorial Middle School, 350 Lynn Fells Parkway in Melrose. The event will feature performances from current Melrose Drama students as well as Melrose Drama alumni and will include some “sneak peeks” from the 2016/2017 season including Disney’s “Tarzan” and “Mary Poppins.” Tickets will be $10 at the door and proceeds from the event will go to Friends of Melrose Drama, a newly formed parent support organization operating as an affiliate of the not for profit Community Coalition of Melrose, Inc.

For more information on the Cabaret, please see the Melrose Drama Facebook Event page, the Melrose Drama website, or email the Friends of Melrose Drama at friendsofmelrosedrama@gmail.com.

Thank you for supporting the Arts in Melrose!

Melrose Commission on Women Student Representative Openings

The recently formed Melrose Commission on Women (MCW) is seeking two high school students to serve as student representatives. Students must live in Melrose or attend Melrose High School. MCW’s purpose is to understand and promote constructive action in areas of specific interest and concern to women and girls in Melrose. The Commission generally meets the third Wednesday of every month from approximately 7pm – 9pm.

To apply, interested students should submit a couple paragraphs or so on why they are interested in joining the commission, including any particular experiences they have had which might be helpful, and/or what areas they believe might be of particular concern to young women and girls in Melrose. Please submit to mcwstudentreps@gmail.com no later than Friday, October 14, 2016. Finalists will be invited to a brief interview.

Paper Shredding and Dehumidifier Recycling Rebate Event: Sept. 17

dehumidifier-recycling-event

DPW’s next Recycling Event will be Saturday, Sept. 17 from 8 a.m. to noon at 72 Tremont Street. This event will feature paper shredding (one box free, each additional box $5 – checks only) and an opportunity for Melrose residents to bring their old, functional dehumidifiers to be recycled in exchange for a $30 mail-in rebate courtesy of Mass Save and National Grid. Limit of 1 residential dehumidifier per household. Further details on the rebate program can be found here.

Residents will also be able to sign up for a free home energy assessment (which can be conducted every 2 years) at this event. Those who can’t attend can still call 339-502-4353 to schedule an assessment, and by having an assessment completed before the end of this year you can help the city win $34,000 for energy efficiency improvements.

Additional items that will be accepted for recycling at this event include: TVs, computer monitors & laptops ($20 each); metal goods ($20); tires ($2-$8); home/office electronics (e.g. computer towers, desktop printers, keyboards & mice); CFL bulbs, books, clothes, mercury items, dried latex paint & household plastic bottles & cans, mixed paper & clean cardboard (all FREE).

For a listing of additional events or for more information and questions, please visit http://www.cityofmelrose.org or call 781-665-0142.

Come to an Open House at Fit Life and Karate Pro Dojo on September 18

openhouseflyer

Sally Frank Farmers’ Market Moves to Fall Hours This Week

This week starts the Sally Frank’s Farmers’ Market seasonal market hours change, due to waning light.

Starting this week, Sept. 15, the market will open at 2 p.m. and close at 6 p.m.

This week the Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee will be at the market again proving free bike tune-ups. There is still space to sign up for one of the slots for a tune-up. Go to our website, scroll down to the Free Bike Tune ups event, and click on “Sign Up” for a time slot here.

Our next farmers market planning meeting will be Tuesday, September 20, 7:30 pm, at the Melrose Library. Email melrosefarmersmarket@gmail.com for more information or just turn up to the meeting. We will be planning our winter market.

This week’s market we’ll have our usual weekly vendors plus Jaju Pierogi (the next time they are coming to the market will be 10/27) and Ackermann Maple Farm. New vendor starting this week: Caroline’s Kitchen bringing Jammaker Brand Jams, Jellies, No Way, No Sugar!

Get Your Free Home Energy Assessment through the Melrose Energy Challenge!

Jim and Lisa Oosterman of Melrose recently had a free energy assessment of their Ellis Farm Lane home.

Jim and Lisa Oosterman of Melrose recently had a free energy assessment of their Ellis Farm Lane home.

You may have noticed the “Melrose Energy Challenge” lawn signs around town over the past few months. They’re part of a city-wide program launched by the Melrose Energy Commission (MEC), encouraging homeowners to take advantage of no-cost home energy assessments.

These assessments provide homeowners with free energy-saving items and a written report that identifies opportunities for energy-efficiency upgrades. Information about utility rebates is also included. Insulation rebates, for example, cover 75 percent of the cost, up to $2,000.

mec-thermometer-400

The Melrose Energy Challenge is tapping into a National Grid initiative that offers cash awards to seven cities in its service territory if they meet a set of pre-determined goals for saving energy. One of the goals for Melrose is 511 new home energy assessments in 2016 and, spurred by the Melrose Energy Challenge, the city’s total now stands at 406.

Residents should be aware that energy assessments are not one-time propositions. Homeowners are entitled to a new assessment every two years, which was good news for Jim and Lisa Oosterman, who live on Ellis Farm Lane. The Oostermans recently had a second home energy assessment.

“It’s a great program,” said Jim. “We had an assessment a couple of years ago and didn’t realize we were eligible to do another one.”

Oosterman pointed out that energy-efficiency technology is rapidly evolving and had made major strides in just two years. “I’m really glad we did it again,” he said. “The technology is better and there are now more sophisticated ways to conduct the assessment.”

In their most recent assessment, the Oostermans had all their CFL bulbs replaced by LEDs, received an energy-efficient surge protector and installed a water-saving showerhead and several sink aerators to save energy and water. In addition, they were able to take advantage of National Grid rebates to have some small insulation projects done.

“They told us we were in pretty good shape but there were still a few opportunities to save energy,” said Jim.

The Melrose Energy Challenge still has nearly four months left so there’s plenty of time to arrange for a free home energy assessment. MEC has partnered with HomeWorks Energy, an energy services company in Woburn, to conduct these assessments.

For more information, or to sign up for a home energy assessment, call 339-502-4353 or visit http://www.homeworksenergy.com/melrose-energy-challenge. You can also contact MEC co-chair Lori Timmermann at MelroseEnergyChallenge@gmail.com.

Commission on Women Holds Logo Contest

The recently formed Melrose Commission on Women invites students and adult amateur artists to submit their designs for its new logo.

The Commission was established by the Board of Aldermen earlier this year, and the first commissioners were officially sworn in in May. “Most organizations—whether they’re non-profits or community-oriented or formal businesses—have a symbol or an identifiable logo, so you know their brand name,” says Commission member Katy Kennedy. “In a way, the brand of the Melrose Commission on Women is open and fluid,” she continued.

All students at Melrose High School and all Melrose residents attending other high schools are eligible to compete and are encouraged to send in their ideas. Adult amateur artists from Melrose are asked to share their creativity, too. “The Logo contest was inspired after I went to the McLaughlin Foundation Arts Festival this year and was so impressed. The animal art and self-portrait paintings made by some of the students were incredible and many of the images have stayed with me” Kennedy said.

Entries should be e-mailed to kennedykaty@me.com no later than November 1, 2016.

The winning design will be selected by two judges, Commission member Lorrie DiCesare, who owns The Hourglass Gift Gallery, and community member artist and graphic designer Shannon MacMaster. The winner will receive a gift card for art supplies and a studio art experience with a Melrose Arts member in addition to having their logo displayed on all of the Commission on Women’s social media and other publicity materials.

Paws for a Cause on September 18

cause-for-paws

%d bloggers like this: