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Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Word Around The Ward


The new Orange Line stop at Assembly Square will be opening very soon much to the delight of all who are patronizing and living at Assembly. Check out this Boston Globe graphic showing interesting information about Charlie's New Stop, as well as, this WBUR article.

Tonight is the last showing of the SomerMovie series taking place at Seven Hills Park/Davis Square. The event is free and starts at dusk. Viewer's chose Mystic Pizza after two months of voting!

Congratulations to the new Rosebud in Davis Square, Somerville Brewing Company's American Fresh Taproom in Assembly Square, and Somerville Brewing Company's Brewery & Taproom in Boynton Yards for being featured as three of Eater Boston's most anticipated openings for the Fall!

The SomerStreets Series takes over Holland Street on Sunday September 7th from 12-4pm and will include a rock climbing wall, informational tables and live music.

The ribbon cutting for the new Assembly Square Orange Line Station is set for Tuesday September 2nd at 2:30 PM.

My most heartfelt condolences to my friend, Paul LeBlanc, on the passing of her Mom. My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours during this difficult time.



On Thursday, September 18, 2014, the MBTA will hold a public meeting to discuss early construction elements of the Green Line Extension (GLX) project that will be beginning this fall. The meeting will be held at the Holiday Inn, 30 Washington Street, Somerville, MA from 6:00 pm-8:00 pm. Please join us to learn about what is proposed in your neighborhood! 

GLX construction in these areas will be discussed:
Early utility work on the following bridges:
Broadway Bridge (Somerville/Medford – Ball Square)
Medford Street Bridge (Somerville - Gilman Square)
School Street Bridge (Somerville – Gilman Square)

GLX Union Square Branch (Fitchburg Mainline):
Including site work, retaining walls, drainage & utilities.
GLX Medford Branch (New Hampshire Mainline) between the Lechmere and Washington Street Stations:
Including site work, limited viaduct foundations, drainage & utilities.

More information about the project is available on the Green Line Extension website at: www.mass.gov/greenlineextension.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Final SomerMovie Set For Thursday

The SomerMovie Fest ends on Thursday August 28th with the Viewer's Choice Selection of Mystic Pizza. The movie starts just after sunset and will be shown in Seven Hills Park/Davis Square.

The movies run from July to the end of August and are completely free and feature movies for the whole family. They are shown at various locations throughout the City that includes Seven Hills Park, Chuckie Harris Park, Nathan Tufts Park, Conway Park and the City Hall Concourse. See the poster or the City's Calendar for movie details. You can also download the Ward 5 Online calendar for saving on your Outlook or Google calendar for quick reference. 

This year's SomerMovie Fest is sponsored by Assembly Row and Comcast.

Board of Aldermen to Meet on Thursday


The Somerville Board of Aldermen will be resuming their regular schedule this Thursday August 28th at 7:00 PM in the Aldermanic Chambers. The agenda has been posted on the meeting portal.

There are 3 ways you can view the action live:
1.) Show up to the meeting
2.) Stream online through the meeting portal
3.) Watch Channel 13 if you have RCN or Channel 22 if you have Comcast.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

RoundUp: Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the Interwebs

Here's a roundup of Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the interwebs.

This will be an ongoing series where you can nominate tweeted or Facebooked (appropriate) #Somerville photos for this roundup by bringing it to my attention using @Ward5Online in your retweet or Facebook post.

Attending a great #Somerville event, frequenting a great local #Somerville business, or getting a photo-op with a #Somerville somebody are just a few ways that can get you considered for inclusion on Ward 5 Online!





September is right around the corner and that means that the annual Ryan Harrington Foundation Corn Toss Tournament at Trum Field is coming up! Check out the new t-shirt designs for this year's fundraiser!


Also seen on Twitter was new Dad, Alderman Dennis Sullivan, enjoying a Somerville Sunsetters performance!


Monday, August 25, 2014

Spring Hill Tool/Stuff Share


If you've ever found yourself in need of a tool or other item that's just too expensive to buy or rent-look no further than Tim Devin's Spring Hill Tool/Stuff Share Google Doc to borrow an item from a neighbor.

Devin explains, "There's a passworded Google doc that members check. It lists everything that people are willing to share, and their contact info. Members can check it, and then contact the owners to see how long they can borrow it for. Unlike other toolshares, there's no central place where members have to leave their tools fulltime for others to use; this way, you keep your drill or whatever in your house, and other people can come and borrow it if you're not using it."

Devin also offered to assist people in starting their own tool share program in other parts of the City.

If you or your neighbors are interested in participating or starting your own, please feel free to email me and I'll give you all the details to get in touch with Tim and begin sharing!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

The Word Around the Ward


The Board of Aldermen resume meetings in one week and have some pretty interesting topics on their plate including the Campaign Finance Reform Ordinance. Of course, Ward 5 Online will be there to bring the news to my readers.

The Somerville Fire Department will be flushing hydrants between August 18th and August 30th,Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. (evening hours of 6:15-8:15pm will be used if needed).

Be on the lookout for some great Fall events coming up for Magoun Square! They will be posted as details are finalized.

Somerville By Design will be holding the next community meeting on September 10th to discuss the Central Broadway Streetscape Improvements Project from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm at the Arthur D. Healey School, 5 Meacham Street in Somerville. The meeting will be held in the cafeteria. A full posting will be made as we approach the date.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Renderings Show Roche Bros Marketplace Concept That Could Come to Davis Square

Roche Bros are offering a different type of market style for the Social Security Building in Davis Square, continuing with a theme they have implemented in other cities including Weston and Medfield. Using a smaller famers-market concept, Brothers Marketplace, is considerably smaller than normal sized Roche Bros Supermarkets.

As always, please comment your thoughts! Big thanks to Alderman at Large Jack Connolly for sharing on his Facebook page.











Somerville's Got Some Employment Bragging Rights!



The City of Somerville is leading the way when it comes to employment records according to data released by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development Department of Unemployment Assistance.

Posting it on his Facebook page, Mayor Joe Curtatone writes, "Exciting and possibly historic fact that just came to my attention - Somerville right now has the lowest unemployment rate of any city in Massachusetts. Yes, even less than places like Newton and Cambridge. On top of that, we have the 3rd lowest unemployment rate of any MA municipality with a workforce of more than 10,000 people, behind the towns of Brookline and Acton (tied with Arlington and Belmont). And as we see more businesses moving into places like Union Square and Assembly Square, that hopefully will enable more Somervillians to work closer to home.

Yet the main takeaway is the live, work, play and raise a family values around which we've oriented our community are paying real economic dividends. That's something to keep in mind as we get closer to the vote in November when the people of Massachusetts finally will get their say on the desperate and foolish attempt to bring casinos to our state. There is a better way and we're doing it here in Somerville. That doesn't mean we're perfect, but we most assuredly are on the right track."

This data is also available as an Excel spreadsheet.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

RoundUp: Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the Interwebs

Here's a roundup of Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the interwebs.

This will be an ongoing series where you can nominate tweeted or Facebooked (appropriate) #Somerville photos for this roundup by bringing it to my attention using @Ward5Online in your retweet or Facebook post.

Attending a great #Somerville event, frequenting a great local #Somerville business, or getting a photo-op with a #Somerville somebody are just a few ways that can get you considered for inclusion on Ward 5 Online!




The Assembly Square Orange Line opening later this month occupied the Facebook and Twitter accounts of two die-hard fans of transit, Hayes Morrison and Mayor Joe Curtatone.



Firefighter Eric Saulnier took to his Facebook page to thank all who attended and donated to his family's annual Booze Cruise for Autism. The Somerville Special Education Department will be receiving some brand-new iPads courtesy of this great event!



Monday, August 18, 2014

This Just In... Roche Bros In Davis Square?


Could the wait for a ground-level occupant of the Social Security Building in Davis Square be over? It is a possibility, according to Alderman At Large Jack Connolly's Facebook page (and Twitter).

The Vice-President of the Board of Aldermen broke the news that the market chain was interested and will hold a tentative meeting on-site (240 Elm Street), Wednesday September 10th at 6:00 PM.

Do comment your thoughts below...

Friday, August 15, 2014

Hey, Mayor Joe, Can I Have A Bike Repair Station For the Community Path? My Birthday Is On Sunday :)

After walking Fresh Pond on Monday, I noticed this Bike Repair Station by the restrooms. What a cool addition to the Community Path this would make, don't you think?

So, considering my birthday is Sunday, I was wondering if I could get some consideration from Mayor Joe to include one on the Community Path or in Lexington Park for use by Community Pathers?

The station has a great design that allows users to fill up tires and includes several tool options for all those crazy things that can happen to your bicycle when you're pedaling around.

If this design isn't good enough...could one of our Artisan's Asylum crafts-people come up with a better design for Villen use?

If we want to be the most bikeable place on the planet, it would be nice to have convenient options like this to keep our bikes in tip-top shape.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Our Loss, Heaven's Gain

Flo and I. Photo by Billy Tauro.
I would like to express my most heartfelt condolences to my Council on Aging friends, Flo Papagno's family, loved ones, and those she touched during her years of dedicated service working with Somerville's senior community. 

I cannot begin to understand the pain that her passing has brought, but I hope you find comfort in the wonderful memories you have of her.

So many in our society could use the attributes that we loved about Flo: kindness, compassion, thoughtfulness and selfless loyalty to those she loved and cared for.  Flo made these qualities seem so easy, but yet so many struggle to practice them.

Flo's legacy will live on in the outstanding work that the Council on Aging does for our seniors. For now, however, we mourn the loss of a stellar human being and phenomenal woman.

I would like to thank Billy Tauro for snapping this photo of Flo and I last year. I will miss her warmth and Somerville will certainly not be the same without her. ~Courtney O'Keefe




The Word Around The Ward


I would like to wish my beautiful niece, Shannon, a very happy 2nd Birthday! Also celebrating this week is Ace Thunder Buddy! 

My condolences to Ward 5er Mike Arnold who lost his dog, Jax, to a disease carried by a dead rat the dog found in his yard. Read Mike's heartbreaking story over at the Somerville Times.

Did you participate in the ice bucket ALS challenge this week? Feel free to comment a link to your video below! You can view mine on my Google+ page.

If you are hearing noise from planes, please log a complaint to MassPort and 311. Somerville is looking to compile data on this issue from residents!

The Piros will be selling off home items on August 16th from 9-5pm at 483 Medford Street. Cash and carry!

Big thanks to the Somerville News Weekly and the Somerville Times for wishing me a Happy Birthday. You sure do know how to make a girl feel special.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

SomerMovie Fo Ya...

The SomerMovie Fest continues on Thursday August 14th with a showing of Julie & Julia. The movie starts at dusk and will be shown at Conway Park.

The movies run from July to the end of August and are completely free and feature movies for the whole family. They are shown at various locations throughout the City that includes Seven Hills Park, Chuckie Harris Park, Nathan Tufts Park, Conway Park and the City Hall Concourse. See the poster or the City's Calendar for movie details. You can also download the Ward 5 Online calendar for saving on your Outlook or Google calendar for quick reference. 


This year's SomerMovie Fest is sponsored by Assembly Row and Comcast.

Occupant Floating Into 515 Medford Street Storefront in Magoun Square

Courtesy of Float's Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/FloatBoston/

According to an announcement in their newsletter, Float Boston will be occupying 515 Medford Street in Magoun Square replacing a hair salon that recently relocated.

Their newsletter states,"We're right across the street from Old Magoun's Saloon and Pennypackers, and a couple doors down from Daddy Jones. There are lots of places to get a bite after your float! It's a great, up-and-coming area.

Besides good thoughts, the other thing we could use is some support for our crowdfunding campaign, which is coming soon. We have the majority of our funding in place, but we could use as much early money as possible to smooth over the rough edges, prepare us for contingencies (there are always contingencies), and with any luck, maybe buy really nice towels. We'll have that live in a couple weeks. Along with some fun swag, you'll have a chance to get in early, try out floating, and even get a year's worth of floating at a crazy price!

We're so excited! I know you are too. Thank you for hanging in with us!"



The storefront boasted thirty offers for occupation with owner, Umberto, insisting that he wanted a non-food source business that complimented the neighborhood.

Aside from their website, they are on Facebook and Twitter for those who want to learn more about this unique business.

Winter Hill is Getting Some Pavement Love!


Press Release from the City of Somerville...

Broadway in Winter Hill will be milled on Friday, Aug. 15 and repaved on Monday, Aug. 18 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. each day, from Dartmouth Street to Grant Street. Traffic in each direction will be open both days, with traffic diverted to the other side of Broadway as needed. Drivers should expect delays.

No parking will be marked and enforced on both sides of Broadway on Friday and Monday during construction hours. Business owners, customers and residents without parking stickers are encouraged to park on adjacent streets, where no ticketing will be in effect.

On Friday, access to driveways and parking lots on Broadway will be allowed, along with deliveries. On Monday during construction hours, there will be no access to driveways and parking lots on Broadway or deliveries allowed. If you need your vehicle during the day, please have it moved from the driveway or parking lot prior to 7 a.m. Also on Monday, Dartmouth Street will be closed at Broadway with two-way traffic allowed back to Evergreen Avenue.

Parking and access restrictions will not be in effect on Saturday or Sunday and pedestrian traffic will be unaffected during construction. Work will take place weather permitting; if rain is too heavy on Monday, paving will take place on Tuesday. If you have any questions, contact 311 (617-666-3311).

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

RoundUp: Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the Interwebs

Here's a roundup of Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the interwebs.

This will be an ongoing series where you can nominate tweeted or Facebooked (appropriate) #Somerville photos for this roundup by bringing it to my attention using @Ward5Online in your retweet or Facebook post.

Attending a great #Somerville event, frequenting a great local #Somerville business, or getting a photo-op with a #Somerville somebody are just a few ways that can get you considered for inclusion on Ward 5 Online!




One of my favorite Ward 5 residents, Belia Coakley, posted some great photos of her and her family on vacation. SCOA's Kim Moss couldn't help but Facebook the great time had by all at the Mayor's Senior Picnic. Hayes Morrison instagrammed a thank you from a tree-planting appreciative resident and Magic 106.7's David Allen Boucher informed his friends about Kickass Cupcake's closing. 




Monday, August 11, 2014

City Officials Aim to Curb Cycling in Business Districts (see what I did there?)


As Somerville seeks to move up the ranks as the most bikeable City, they are also making sure everyone knows where they're allowed and not allowed to pedal.

Speed and close-calls with pedestrians in bustling Somerville squares is proving to be a dangerous combination and City Officials are putting steps in place to keep everyone safe, including the decals in the picture on the left, increased enforcement of cyclists in the squares and on the streets has already been implemented. The Patch recently reported on a story of a cyclist arrested for not cooperating with Police after running a red light.

This comes on the heels of a sting operation for pedestrian safety that grew much attention on the local media scene (Times, News WeeklyMy Fox Boston).

Decals have been painted on sidewalks in the Magoun Square area are alerting cyclists that they are not allowed on sidewalks in the increasingly busy business district. With the mileage amount of bike lanes and sharrows being painted around Somerville constantly increasing, it is clear that the City wants cyclists off sidewalks completely.

Piro Printing Property Up For Sale



The printer that has helped residents, local businesses and politicians, alike, is leaving Magoun Square after decades of being in business.

For Sale signs now adorn the Piro Printers business and three family home located at 483 Medford Street. This comes just 6 months after the business relocated in Charlestown combining with another print shop (AB Printing) that, according to Marc Piro, "is more modern and streamlined." 

"Magoun Square has been very good to my family," said Piro when I spoke to him on the phone. "I'm learning new things with newer and more modern machinery."

Marc Piro has run the business for many years providing print services that included wedding invitations, business cards, political signage and campaign literature for local politicians. It was through Piro that I had my yard signs, palm cards, lapel and bumper stickers made when I ran for Alderman last year.

At this time, no price has been set for the property, however, a phone number and email address is provided on the sign for potential buyers.

Although saddened to see the property up for sale, I hope this gives Marc and his family an opportunity to move on to bigger and better adventures. I wish him the best of luck and thank him for his years of service to the Somerville community.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

The Word Around The Ward


The streets of Somerville are pretty quiet as most Villens are away on vacation. The end of August will see the Board of Aldermen resume meetings with September shaping up to be an interesting month-politically.

Candidates for State Representative (34th Middlesex District) are working hard with some hitting the candidate forum scene and all doing their share of door-knocking. Erin DiBenedetto was seen in Ward 4 while Christine Barber just celebrated the opening of her campaing headquarters. Craig Rourke continues to send out mailings for fundraisers and attended the Somerville Democrats BBQ. Lastly, Nick Lanzilli is getting some love in Magoun Square as Creative Signs is flying his name on their building. Remember, August 20th is the last day to register to vote in the September Primary.

Ward 5 Online bids farewell to activist Keri Lorenzo and her family as they move to Wilmington from Ward 4. I'll definitely miss her passionate Facebook commentary on Somerville! Good luck!

Congratulations to David Fallon for being chosen by the Mayor to be Somerville's Top Cop. Fallon currently serves as the Deputy Chief of Operations, is a Somerville native and joined the force in 1998. Fallon's next stop is in front of the Board of Aldermen for a the final approval.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

RoundUp: Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the Interwebs


Here's a roundup of Ward 5 Online's favorite #Somerville photos on the interwebs.

This will be an ongoing series where you can nominate tweeted or Facebooked (appropriate) #Somerville photos for this roundup by bringing it to my attention using @Ward5Online in your retweet or Facebook post.

Attending a great #Somerville event, frequenting a great local #Somerville business, or getting a photo-op with a #Somerville somebody are just a few ways that can get you considered for inclusion on Ward 5 Online!



Rain and Market Basket dominated the social media scene this week. Here are Ward 5 Online's favorite mentions of both!



Monday, August 4, 2014

11th Annual National Night Out To Take Place at Foss Park Tomorrow



The City of Somerville will celebrate the 11th Annual National Night Out Against Crime and Drugs tomorrow at Foss Park from 5-8pm.

According to the press release, The event will include Fire and Police Department demonstrations; a presentation from the Massachusetts State PoliceK-9 unit; live performances by the Sunsetters, Teen Empowerment, and the Red Tiger Academy of Martial Arts; youth activities and games; raffle prizes; and information tables from over 30 neighborhood agencies.


Friday, August 1, 2014

New Trees Hit Ward 5



Some slight traffic congestion was worth it this past week as crews planted brand-new trees in various locations around Ward 5 that included Medford Street (by Central), Magoun Square, Lowell Street and Vernon Street. Many more locations are still marked with stakes, but the new installations are being well-received by residents.

After planting over 500 between 2010 and 2012, the City is looking to plant another 575 on it's way to 2,000 total by the end of 2015. Twelve species of trees will be planted over the course of the month, including red maple, silver linden and sweetgum (Read the full press release here).

Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Word Around The Ward


Rain put a slight damper on Sunday's SomerStreets, but families braved the weather and made it out to seize the summer on Highland Avenue. Thanks to all involved!

There's a really interesting conversation happening over at Davis Square Live Journal about bringing an online forum together for the whole City. After reading the post, let me know your thoughts below.

Big congratulations to Daddy Jones Bar for being approved by the Licensing Commission to serve alcohol on her patio. Construction to happen soon with a planned opening for 2015!

Congratulations to MF Dulock who was featured in Boston Magazine's Best of Boston issue as Best Butcher!

Happy Birthday to former Ward 5er Mario Oliveira!