Boo! Tournament Ready, Belmont Field Hockey Welcomes C-C On Halloween In 1st Round

Photo: Seniors on Seniors Night at Belmont High School.

Belmont Field Hockey is only thinking all treats and no rock as the 7th seeded Marauders host 10th ranked Concord Carlisle Regional on Halloween in the first round of the MIAA Division 1 North Sectionals.

The game will have an early start, 2:30 p.m., at Harris Field on Oct. 31.

The Patriots come to town with a 12-4-2 record as runners-up to Weston in the Dual County League, Small School division. Belmont finished the season at 12-4-0, second to Lexington in the Middlesex Liberty division race.

The postseason comes as Belmont has seeming rightened the ship after going through a stretch where the Marauders could not convert their good play into wins. It’s two Lexington league games were relatively even in all aspects except the final score as the Minutemen outpaced Belmont 7-1 over the two games. In its rematch against Winchester (having won the initial encounter, 3-0), Belmont arrived at an empty field and no one to be found. It turned out a scheduling change left Belmont waiting for two hours in the cold before losing 4-2 in a lackluster affair.

But coming down the stretch, it appeared the Marauders had rediscovered its earlier strong form starting the season on a seven-game winning streak that concluded with an outstanding effort against 10-time Division 2 state champs Watertown, outplaying the Raiders on the field (13 penalty corners to 1 and 8 shots to 2) but came out on the wrong end of a 2-0 score.

For longtime head coach Jess Smith, the final two games of the regular season saw an increase in scoring chances while a tweaking of her defense has solidified the backline.

“For the tournament, I wanted a home game and not play a Middlesex League team in the first round,” said Smith. “Playing someone new is helpful for the kid’s mindset because playing someone three times is a nightmare.” 

On Seniors Night, Oct. 24, Belmont concluded the sweep over a nine-win Reading team, handily defeating the Rockets, 3-1. Co-captain forward Morgan Chase scored along with fellow senior left wing Hana Power in the first half followed by junior midfield Katie Guden in the second. The Marauders dominated the middle of the field not allowing the Rockets to use its breakout speed on the counter-attack. Guden produced the play of the game when her “ankle breaker” NBA-style crossover move left a Rocket defender on the turf to the amusement of her teammates (and it must be said to the victim herself).

Reading has played Belmont and Concord Carlisle twice this season, losing 2-1 at Concord and tying the Patriots, 1-1, in the reverse fixture.

“I was really happy how they played against Reading. They were determined to return to how they were playing in the first part of the season,” she said. “They showed up and played the entire 60 minutes.” 

Belmont traveled to Arlington for a late autumn last game to finish off the regular season, coming away with a 5-1 win where Smith was able to bring in bench players and switch around positions. Guden, Power, Lettiere (2) and senior right wing and Chase tallied in the game. 

“They started the game out slow, but by the end, we could have scored a lot more than five goals. I think the kids are starting to feel that they are tournament ready,” said Smith.

Letter To The Editor: A Yes Vote On Question 4 Is An Investment In Belmont’s Future

Photo: One of the modular units at the Burbank. 

To the editor:

If you’re like me, you really love living here in Belmont. I’ve yet to find another suburb of Boston that has quite the same small-town community feel. Belmont residents – from those who have lived here their entire lives to those who are newly arrived – know how special our community is, and understand the importance of preserving and nurturing what makes Belmont unlike any other town in Massachusetts. Investing in our community with a YES vote in support of the 7-12 school preserves and protects what has made Belmont so special all these years.

On Nov. 6, it is up to all of us to decide what kind of town we want to be moving forward. Do we want to preserve what we love about the Belmont community by investing in it, or do we want to stand idle with no sustainable solution to the increasing demands on our school system?  

The reality is this: No matter what happens on Nov. 6, our taxes are going up to address the crisis of overcrowding and the dire needs of our high school.  The decision we all have to make is where do I want my taxes going when it comes to our town’s education system?  

  • A NO vote means we’re paying an expected $247 million to rebuild and repair a crumbling, asbestos-filled high school building (that is not ADA compliant), along with overcrowded elementary schools and 48 modular trailers to house our children. 48 modulars! Are you wondering what 48 modulars look like? Take a walk behind the Burbank School and check out the monstrous structure that looms over half of the blacktop playspace. That is only four modulars. Imagine twelve times that number, all across our schools.
  • A YES vote is an investment of $213 million (that’s right, it’s projected to cost $34 million less than the costs of a NO vote) to solve our overcrowding crisis while also ensuring our children are learning in up-to-date schools that provide a safe, supportive, nurturing environment.

Still undecided? Stop by that Burbank School blacktop one morning around 8:35 a.m. No, not to see the modular trailers, but to see the children waiting to enter the school. These kids are incredible. They are truly special, just like our town. And these kids, along with all of Belmont’s current elementary school children, would be the first students to step into the new 7-12 school once it opens. Join me in looking back on Nov. 6 as the day that you decided to invest in these kids and the future of our incredible town.

I hope you will join me in voting YES on Tuesday, Nov. 6th.

Reed Bundy

School Street 

Town Meeting Member Precinct 1

Letter To The Editor: Yes On Question 3 To Preserve Transgender Rights

Photo: Transgender rights is on the state election ballot Nov. 6.

To the editor:

In 2016, the Massachusetts Legislature and Gov. Charlie Baker affirmed the rights of transgender individuals in Massachusetts to be treated like anyone else: to be free of discrimination in public places. As this issue directly affects the safety and well-being of people in my own family, I was reassured that we had chosen the right place to live. Belmont, in particular, has been a supportive community in which my wife and I can raise our children.

However, there are many in the state and from elsewhere who oppose the very existence of transgender people, and who refuse to acknowledge their need for dignity and safety. They formed a campaign to overturn the existing protections. Their reasoning is flawed and vicious and uses unsupported fears to demonize those who do not fit their strict idea of gender. They’ve raised money from like-minded anti-LGBTQ groups around the country to further their hateful agenda. To my fellow Belmont residents: I ask you to please not let those people win. Vote YES on Question 3 to preserve these basic rights for transgender people, including those in my family.

Over the past few years, we have seen an increase in biased attacks on LGBTQ people, immigrants, Muslims, Jews, and people of color. In an environment where the rhetoric and actions in Washington are accelerating discrimination, it is vital that the people of Massachusetts work to protect those who face systemic bias. A yes vote on Question 3 is one step we can take to do this, but it is only one of many. Reach out to your neighbors, your friends, and your family to increase understanding and compassion. Practice noticing and breaking down your own prejudices. Speak up when you witness someone spreading misinformation or biased statements about a whole group of people. 

We are all individuals seeking the space to raise our families, to feel safe in our communities, to help our children have better lives than we have. Let’s help create a world where everyone is able to do that without fear.

Jessie Bennett

Trowbridge Street

Town Meeting Member, Precinct 1

Ghoulish and Creepy: Belmont Town Hall Turns Tricks Or Treats

Photo: The Scarecrow greeting her constituancy at Town Hall. 

A slew of kids and a fair number of adults were given a bit of a fright coming to the Town Hall complex in Belmont Center as the entire staff provided an early Halloween trick with the treats on Monday, Oct. 29.

The Town Administrators Office was transformed into the Addams Family (Glenn and Patrice made a wonderful Gomez and Morticia) while the Department of Public Works took the Disney route with Snow White and the Seven Dwarves – with a particularly fetching princess – while there were competing Wizard of Oz offices with stuffed Totos in the Homer Building and Town Hall. You could touch eyeballs and brains in the HR department whose director was mirroring Audrey Hepburn as Holly Golightly (although she admitted only residents and staff of a “certain” age recognized the costume) while a mad scientist was conjuring up budgets out of thin air at the Homer. 

Official town business continued as usual in the Town Clerks office where a resident was helped by the Tinman to determine whether the post office had notified the Scarecrow of the resident’s change of address in time so she could vote on a ballot question – alas, they did not. Just another rock in the sack of voting for some at Town Hall. 


Q&A: Warrant Meeting On Articles Before Special Town Meeting Tuesday, Oct. 30

Photo: Poster for the event 

The public and Town Meeting members are invited to attend a Warrant Briefing tonight, Tuesday, Oct. 30, at 7:30 p.m. at the Beech Street Center, 266 Beech St.

Residents and voters will have the opportunity to ask questions about the Warrant Articles prior to Special Town Meeting scheduled to begin on Tuesday, Nov 13.

The articles that will be before the “Special” will include:

  • Appropriation of debt to build the Belmont High School construction project.
  • Amendment to the zoning bylaw to create an overlay district along South Pleasant Street.
  • Amendment to the zoning bylaw to create an adult use marijuana overlay district.
  • A Community Preservation Committee off cycle request for $400,000 for the design of an Alexander Avenue underpass.
  • A citizen petition to extend the temporary moratorium on marijuana establishment for an additional six months til June 30, 2019.
  • Reduction of the senior property tax deferral interest rate from eight percent to four-and-a half percent.

Town officials and department heads will be present to provide information. Roy Epstein, chair of the Warrant Committee, will preside. Tonight’s meeting is cosponsored by the Warrant Committee and the Belmont League of Women Voters Education Fund.

Learn About Music Whatever Your Age, Skills At Powers’ Workshop Week

Photo: The poster for this week’s workshops.

A big event is happening beginning today, Monday, Oct. 29 and running through Saturday, Nov. 3 as the Powers Music  School is holding its first Workshop Week.

Taught by local and regional teaching artists, the workshops bring accessible music and arts programs right to the public, and provide a fun way to learn about music.

“We are offering 50-plus workshops that cost only $5 each (or free for registered Powers families) and there is truly something for everyone,” said Kelly Webber, Director of Marketing & Communications for the school, located at 396/380 Concord Ave.

Whether you’re new to music or already play an instrument, are young or old, there is a class for everyone.

All details about the event are on the Powers’ Workshop Week webpage


IT Committee Wants Your Opinion On Improving Resident/Town Engagement

Photo: Belmont is seeking to increase engagement with government and residents.

The Belmont Information Technology Advisory Committee (ITAC) is conducting a short survey to assess how residents are engaging with the work of both elected and appointed committees in our town government. We are asking for your help. 

The survey’s purpose is to gauge how residents interact with elected and appointed government committees. We want to know how and where you obtain the information you need about the work your town government does. We are interested in your feelings about different options to leverage technology to increase public engagement in town government – for example: streaming committee meetings, remote participation for committee members and members of the public, and other activities. We would very much appreciate your input!

The survey shouldn’t take more than five minutes to complete.

The link to the survey is

Paul F. Roberts, chair, Information Technology Advisory Committee (ITAC)

Glenn Wong, vice chair

Belmont Football Just Short In First Playoff Game, 50-35; Burlington At Home Friday

Photo: Belmont senior RB Rhaki Joseph on the run.

When Danvers’ Matt McCarthy intercepted Belmont’s Avery Arno’s pass and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown (McCarthy’s fourth time into the end zone) early in the third quarter to make the score 43-6 in favor of the host Falcons in the first round of the Division 3 North football playoffs, it could have easily been the time for the Marauders to pack it in for the night. 

“Ninety-nine out of 100 teams would have walked off the field and thrown in the towel. Ninety-nine out of 100 defenses would have checked out,” said Belmont Head Coach Yann Kumin after the game.

But for Belmont, the night would not end after a half.

“I want to play more football and so do you,” said Kumin as Belmont would score four touchdowns against Danvers’ at times porous defense while the Marauders defense allowed a single sustained scoring drive by the Falcons to erase a blowout and make it a game Falcons had to earn, 50-35. 

“We have never been here before,” said Kumin as Friday’s game was Belmont first-ever playoff game under the MIAA postseason system established four years ago. Every journey is a long road “and this game takes us one step closer to our goal. This [playoff trip] was no small accomplishment and we know in our hearts that we were just two possessions away from winning this game.”

“Be proud of how we got here and we have three more weeks of football left,” he said. 

Belmont (3-5) will now host Middlesex League rival Burlington High (5-3) on Friday, Nov. 2 at 6 p.m. at Harris Field. Burlington was upset by visiting Wayland on Friday in the first round of the Division 4 North sectionals. The Devils (5-3) is led by senior running back Jake Doherty who ran for 346 rushing yards and four touchdowns against Wilmington earlier in October.

It was a classic game of two half with Danvers which raced off to a 5-0 start to the season before losing its star quarterback Brendan Treacy for a pair of games – both losses – to a reported violation of a school policy. The hosts dominated the game with Treacy particularly successful through the air (252 yards, a pair of touchdowns) as the Marauders defensive line held its own against the Falcon’s ground attack. 

Treacy scored from two yards out after a three-minute opening drive. Belmont picked up a first down on an Arno to senior receiver Jared Edwards completion to Belmont’s 40 but the drive stalled on the next set of downs. McCarthy scored his first TD of the night on a 43-yard scamper with two minutes remaining in the first. The Falcon’s third score of the quarter came with some controversy as Danvers receiver Ezra Lombardi shoved Edwards who was in coverage along the right sideline to grab a bomb from Treacy for a 90 yard TD.

Belmont got on the scoreboard on a nifty drive that included one of several unsportsmanlike penalties on Danvers with senior RB Rhaki Joseph taking it 18 yards up the gut with 8:59 remaining in the second quarter. 

But Danvers’ McCarthy would end the Falcons’ final two drives in the first half, the first a 15-yard rushing TD followed by an outstanding 16-yard catch between two Belmont defenders in the corner of the right end zone with 58 seconds remaining to extend the lead to 35-6 at the half. 

“We must be faster in making our adjustments [to what Danvers is doing],” said Kumin. “We went into the half knowing what we had to do and it was successful. We just have to do our [changes] on the fly,” he said.

The overhaul of Belmont’s play calling to an in-your-face attacking offense showed immediate results in the third as Joseph scored his second touchdown (and the two-point conversion) soon to be followed by a 32-yard scamper by senior running back Kilian O’Connell, both assisted by a myriad of penalties.

A failed onside kick late in the third allowed Danvers to work with a short field and they capitalized when running back Jack Strangie scored on a 10-yard run early in the fourth quarter. Despite being down by 29, Belmont’s offense continued to take the game to the Falcons as Joseph powered in from three yards out for his third TD of the night with 7:23 remaining.
Belmont’s defense stopped Danvers on a third and 4 with 2:40 left and the offense steamrolled its way into the end zone as Arno found senior wide receiver Mike Delhome on a 31-yard pass and catch with just less than a minute to play in the game. But offsides on an attempted onside kick ended the night and the playoff run for the Marauders. 
But for Kunin, the game is part of the progress he has seen in the program over the past few years, coming from losing seasons up to where Belmont was four minutes away in its game against Arlington last week from hosting a playoff game. 

“I’m proud of this team. These guys didn’t quit and they wouldn’t let me quit,” he said.

Masquerade Concert, Haunted House At Belmont High This Wednesday, Oct. 24

Photo: The poster for the Masquerade Concert

Preview your costume and get scared as Belmont High School turns into a House of Horrors on Wednesday, Oct. 24, as students get ready to do some pre-Halloween spooookiness.

Need a night of fright this Halloween season? Then come down to the fifth annual Belmont High School Haunted House! This event includes a walk-through spook show and a Halloween activity center for younger guests. The house, constructed and inhabited by the sophomore class, will be open from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the school’s cafeteria. There is a $5 admission fee: this year the class is donating all funds to Samaritans, the suicide prevention hotline. 

Right after the Haunted House, the Belmont High School Music Ensembles will hold its yearly Masquerade Benefit Concert which this year will assist the Belmont Food Pantry. The musical groups will be outfitted in their ghoulish best as they present a variety of magical and scary music. 

The concert starts at 7 p.m. in the school’s auditorium. Join in on the fun and wear your own costumes.

While admission is free, a suggested donation of $10 to $25 or nonperishable food items would be appreciated.

Early Voting Has Begun In Belmont; Final Day Friday, Nov. 2 [VIDEO]

Photo: Early voting has begun.

Thanks to the 2016 changes to the Massachusetts General Laws, any registered voter of Massachusetts may choose to cast a ballot for the State Election (candidates and four questions) before Election Day on Nov. 6. The law permits registered voters to cast ballots during the designated period of Early Voting, for 2018  between Oct. 22 and Friday, Nov. 2.  

“We are excited to offer this opportunity to all registered voters of Belmont, an expanded, accessible schedule of hours at one central location, Belmont Town Hall, for this “no excuse” vote-ahead option,” said Belmont Town Clerk Ellen Cushman.

Early voting is available to every registered voter. Unlike absentee voting that is available in every election for only those voters who will be absent from Belmont, or have a physical disability preventing the voter from going to the polls or with a religious belief preventing the voter from going to the polls on Election Day.

No advance application is necessary to Vote Early in person; you can decide the date and time to cast your ballot at Town Hall during designated Early Voting hours. Once the voter has cast an Early Voting Ballot, that voter may not vote at the polls on Election Day or receive an Absentee Ballot. 

Only Belmont residents who are registered to vote by the Oct. 17 deadline are eligible to vote in this year’s State Election.  To register to vote, find out whether and where you are already registered, where to vote, visit the Secretary of State’s website.

To find out more about Absentee and Early Voting, visit the Belmont Town Clerk’s pages on the Town website.

Early Voting for Belmont Voters will be available ONLY at Town Hall, 455 Concord Ave., during the following schedule of dates and hours, no advance notice is required: 

  • Monday, Oct. 22; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 23; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 24;  8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Oct. 25;  8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 26; 8 a.m. to Noon
  • Saturday, Oct. 27; 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 28; No Early Voting Hours
  • Monday, Oct. 29; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 30;  8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 31; 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Thursday, Nov. 1; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Nov. 2; 8 a.m. to Noon

“Pick the most convenient date and time for you and give Early Voting a try.  It’s always advisable to have your ID with you when you go to vote either on Election Day or for Early Voting,” said Cushman.

Written, signed Absentee Applications and Early Voting Applications that request us to mail you a ballot are also available, online at the Town Clerk’s webpage or at the Town Clerk’s office at Town Hall.  If you have questions or need additional information, email the Town Clerk’s office at or phone 617-993-2600