A Race That Makes A Difference: 10th FBE Apple Run 5K/2K; Sunday, Oct. 2

Photo: And they are off in the 10th FBE Apple Run

This is a run that makes a difference.

Now in its 10th year, the Foundation for Belmont Education Apple Run 5K/2K will see hundreds of runners take to the streets of Belmont to support public education and innovation in the Belmont Public Schools. Since the inaugural event in 2013, the Apple Run has raised more than $200,000 for the Foundation for Belmont Education, a 501c3 non-profit organization that awards grants to the Belmont Public Schools to enrich the education provided to Belmont students.

FBE APPLE RUN takes place on SUNDAY, OCT. 2, on Harris Field at Belmont HIgh School. The 5K will start at 9:30 a.m.; the 2K at 10:45 a.m.

The FBE Apple Run 5K follows a scenic, 5-kilometer route through Belmont. Starting and ending at the Belmont High School track at Harris Field on Concord Avenue, the course passes by four of the town’s six public schools – Burbank, Chenery, Wellington, and the High School – and the historic Payson Park Reservoir. The course ends back at the track.

Go get your sneakers, your family, friends, neighbors, classmates, and teammates, and get out and run at this great Fall community event.


There are many great reasons to run:

  • You get to run with your community, family, and friends!
  • The first 400 runners get a very cool 10th anniversary dri-fit T-shirt!
  • Run to win! Prizes available for the fastest per age group (10-year increments), the largest team, the fastest team, and the most festive running outfit!
  • Get motivated to run by the great tunes from FBE Apple Run DJ Paul Madden!
  • This event is for everyone, any age and any pace!
  • Run because the money raised funds grants to educators in the Belmont Public Schools to implement innovative programs and advanced technology that result in richer and deeper learning experiences for our students!
  • Belmont has been running for education for 10 years now – let’s keep running to fund our students and educators!

Please visit our website to learn more about how the FBE makes a difference in the Belmont Public Schools.


Please sign-up here and donate a little of your time. Thank you for your support.



The Foundation for Belmont Education is grateful for your support!

All Ages Invited To Belmont’s First Touch-A-Truck On Oct. 8

Photo: Touch-a-Truck is on its way

You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy Belmont’s first ever Touch-A-Truck event which is set to go on Saturday, Oct. 8, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Belmont Center Parking lot on Claflin Street.

Walk in the parking lot for an up-close view of tractors, trucks, diggers, police cars, and fire engines from Belmont DPW, Light, Fire, and Police along with several local businesses and potentially room for a couple more. Sit in the seats, honk the horns, or take your picture on the front end of the equipment.

Hosting the event is Belmont Youth Activities and D.A.R.E. Inc., with the support of the Town of Belmont as well as the Belmont Center Business Association.

Belmont Fire Pins Newest Member

Photo: New Belmont Firefighter Mike Nolan has his badge pinned by his wife, Brittney.

Belmont Fire added its newest member – for a second time – to the force at a pinning ceremony at the Select Board’s meeting Monday, Sept. 12.

Three years ago, Mike Nolan joined the Belmont Fire Department before heading off to another department a year-and-a-half ago, according to Belmont Fire Chief David DeStefano.

“He has since decided that the Belmont Fire Department is the place to be and we’re glad to have him,” said DeStefano.

Nolan had his badge pinned for the second time by his wife, Brittney. The pair was married just five weeks before – honeymoon in St. Lucia – the event at Town Hall.

Nolan will be a “proby” for the next year.

From left: Belmont Fire Chief David DeStefano, Asst. Chief Andrew Tobio, BFF Mike Nolan, Select Board member Roy Epstein, Brittney Nolan, Select Board members Adam Dash and Chair Mark Paolillo, Brian Nolan, Terrie Nolan and Ashley Tworig.

Soccer Night In Belmont Welcomes Watertown HS Teams/Youth Players To Celebration Of The Game

Photo: Soccer Night in Belmont is this Saturday!

Soccer Night in Belmont is back for its seventh edition taking place on Belmont High’s Harris Field this Saturday, Sept. 17. The annual free event traditionally “sells out” the stands with more than 2,000 showing up for an afternoon and night of soccer fun.

This year Soccer Night welcomes neighboring Watertown in the high school games and for youth soccer players from both towns to participate in the celebrations and half time games.

The high school games will be at 4:30 p.m. for the girls and 6:30 p.m. for the boys. Belmont and Watertown youth soccer players will be wearing their uniforms and parading out with players during the pre-game ceremonies. 

Activities will include:

  • Belmont and Watertown youth players are mascots processing onto the field with the teams and their coaches
  • Belmont and Watertown middle school chorus students sing the national anthem
  • Belmont and Watertown Boy Scouts will present the color guard
  • Belmont High March Band’s drumline plays before kickoff
  • Youth players from both towns swarm the field at each halftime to play their games
  • The Phoenix Cup is presented to the winning teams for a photo and will have the games’ scores etched in it
  • Belmont’s Parents of Music Students (POMS) runs the concession stand
  • The field is dressed with the international flags of the nationalities of all the player
  • The JV teams help hand out the programs as patrons enter, and also provide tattoos for each team’s fans
  • Live broadcast of the games for family members near and far to watch with full commentating
  • Patches are presented to commemorate the night, along with a detailed program of the players

Dinner food and snacks are available, so bring the whole family to eat and support our varsity teams. It is always a fantastic event and your players will really love it!

Leaf Blowers, Elected Vs Appointed Treasurer To Be Tackled At Late November Special Town Meeting

Photo: An off-cycle Community Preservation Committee funding request to finish the Town Hall roof will be an article at Belmont’s Special Town Meeting in November 2022.

Town Meeting Members can expect three long, drawn-out nights as the agenda for this year’s Special Town Meeting was revealed to the Select Board at its Monday, Sept. 12 meeting.

Members will vote on 13 articles over three consecutive nights; Nov. 29, 30, and Dec. 1 that includes changing how the town treasurer is chosen, the creation of a bylaw to end the use of gas-powered leaf blowers in town in the next five years, providing additional funds to the Recreation Department and send free cash into rainy day funds. 

“There is concern at the number of articles … that Belmont can take a considerable amount of time in discussing some of the articles,” said Town Administrator Patrice Garvin presenting the agenda to the board and the Warrant Committee at its organizational meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 14.

“I will be meeting with the Town Moderator [Mike Widmer] to look at the list in a realistic way and hopefully try and get through the articles,” she said.

The Special Town Meeting could also be the first in-person meeting since 2019 if Widmer determines the meeting can take place safely in the new Belmont Middle and High School auditorium.

The index of warrant articles include:

  • Article 1: Reports
  • Article 2: Appropriation Belmont Library, Authorization to Borrow
  • Article 3: Belmont Municipal Ice-Skating Rink, Authorization to Borrow
  • Article 4: Establishing a Capital Stabilization Fund
  • Article 5: Transfer from Free Cash to Capitalization Fund
  • Article 6: Transfer from Free Cash to General Stabilization Fund
  • Article 7: Establish a Recreation Enterprise Fund
  • Article 8: Leaf Blower Bylaw
  • Article 9: Elected Treasurer to Appointed/Hire
  • Article 10: Extension of Contract Term for Electric Vehicle Buses
  • Article 11: Off Cycle Community Preservation Project – Town Hall Roof
  • Article 12: Current Year Supplemental Payment for Recreation Department
  • Article 13: Appropriation of Opioid Settlement

Looking down the plan, Garvin noted that articles 2 and 3 would only be taken up if one or both debt exclusion votes on building a new library and municipal skating facility were approved by voters at the Nov. 8 General Election.

The middle articles, 4-7, is the establishment of several funding line items. For example, Garvin said her office is proposing to transfer a portion of fiscal year ’22 “free cash” – the amount certified by the state will be announced on Sept 15 – into a pair of accounts; capital and the general stabilization funds.

The newly created capital fund will be for future capital needs and projects such as roofs on municipal buildings. Article 6 is a straight transfer from free cash into the established general fund that sets aside monies to be available for future spending purposes.

Garvin said the impetus for this approach was that each year a significant amount of free cash is carried forward to the next fiscal year. “[The town’s finance team] felt that it might be good to start storing [free cash] into stabilization funds for future appropriation and try and figure out a way to use that in a more productive way rather than keeping it aside for the operating budget,” said Garvin.

Garvin reminded the board on Monday that Article 7, establishing a Recreation Department enterprise fund, “has been talked about for a few years now.” And even now, “we’re still running down whether or not this is something that town should be doing.” An alternative is a potential revolving fund, “so we are running that down with Recreation Department.” The article is a placeholder until a firm decision is decided after discussions with Recreaction Department Director Brendan Fitts.

Article 8 is the leaf blower bylaw which the board talked about extensively since the beginning of the Covid-19 shutdown “when we first started getting complaints from residents about the noise level for leaf blowers.” Negotiations between small landscaping businesses and environmentalists have created a blueprint for ending gas-driven machines in the next few years.

“The Select Board discussed at the last couple of meetings … the possibility of making the elected treasurer an appointed/hired treasurer,” said Garvin, which will be before Special Town Meeting as Article 9.

Article 10 is an extension of a contract term for electric vehicle buses. Garvin said while there has been a great deal of discussion at the School Department, and when they put out their bid for buses, it will likely include electric – or EV – powered versions, there has been no formal “ask” by the district.

“The article is just a placeholder because, under Massachusetts’ procurement law, you can only have a three-year contract with a vendor … and some require a 10-year contract,” said Garvin. Under the law, such a contract has to be approved by a Town Meeting vote, she said. This article will be used to set up the district when it wants to go to these buses, said Garvin.

Article 11 is an off-cycle Community Preservation Project request to finish the repairs to the slate tiles on the Town Hall roof which received CPC funding. On Wednesday, Sept. 14, the CPC approved the extra funding.

Article 12 is a current year supplemental for the Recreation Department which is seeking additional funds to allow “Rec” to provide the programing that is town residents are demanding.

“Covid-19 has been tough to estimate receipts for Recreation. Garvin told the board that any surge in demand could decimate a program. “So we are looking to potentially change what those estimates are because our concern is Recreation is going to run out of money for FY ’23.”

The final article, 13, is Belmont’s appropriation of the state Attorney General’s Statewide Opioid Settlements. “I don’t know if people watch the news, but the town added itself to the settlements. So we have an opportunity to receive money, and this is something that we’re looking at to see if it would benefit the town,” Garvin said. The town would have to create a separate account to accept the settlement funds, which, Financial Director Jennifer Hewitt noted, would be $200,000 in the first year. “But the payments would fall significantly” over the next 16 years,” she added.

With the warrant open for only two days – Sept. 13 and Sept. 14 – it’s unlikely the Town Clerk’s office will have accepted any citizen petitions for certification, which was just fine with board member Adam Dash.

“I’ve always perferred to keep Special Town Meetings to the [agenda] because we have a special need for these meetings. Citizen petitions and all that are more [suited] to an annual Town Meeting,” he said.

Belmont Goes Electric Set For Saturday, Sept. 17 At The Chenery

Photo:A STIHL® Electric Blower(credit: STIHLUSA)

Join Belmont Light, Sustainable Belmont, and the Belmont Energy Committee for ‘Belmont Goes Electric!’ a joint home and garden electrification event on Saturday, Sept. 17, at 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Chenery Middle School, 95 Washington St.

Events will include:

  • Test drive or ride along in a number of All-Electric and Plug-In Hybrid Vehicles from dealers and residents.
  • Talk with a representative from the handheld power equipment firm Stihl about battery operated yard equipment, including leaf blowers, lawn mowers, and more.
  • Discover the benefits and affordability of going electric in your home, garage, and yard, including rebates from Belmont Light.
  • Talk to current owners of EVs, cordless yard equipment, and heat pump systems about their experiences.
  • Sustainability-focused groups will be in attendance.

Belmont High Field Hockey Opens Season 2-0 With Rival Watertown Set For Friday Night Visit

Photo: Belmont High Forward Mary Mullan scoring her second and the team’s fifth against Stoneham in the Marauders’ 6-1 win.

Under a brilliant late summer afternoon, Belmont High’s Field Hockey squad got off an equally bright start to the 2022 season with a dominating performance against Stoneham, 7-1, at Harris Field on Thursday, Sept. 7.

The team would follow up with an away win, 3-1, at Melrose, on Tuesday, Sept. 13.

“Great way to begin the season especially how our offense looks. They really worked hard, always tooking to take the shot,” said Jess Smith, who is now in her 19th year at the helm of the Marauders.

Forwards Mary Mullins and Carly Gaziano each earned a brace joining Alex Townsend, Lola Rocci (2 assists) and MacKenzie Clark on the scoresheet with freshman center midfield Clark accepting the role of “quarterback” in directing the Marauder attack.

“MacKenzie’s amazing. She’s very unselfish, and sometimes she passes too much. I’d wish he’d be a bit more selfish in the attack,” said Smith.

Belmont broke open the scoring in the final five minute in the first quarter with three goals starting with Gaziano scoring with a push shot in close.

“It was really fun passing and connecting with my teammates,” said Gaziano.

In Melrose, left wing Gaziano found the back of the net two more times in the first and third quarter, surrounding Devin Kelleher‘s first of the season in the first quarter. Smith noted the performance of Tess Desantis in the midfield controling the ball while getting two assists.

While Belmont has had the run of play for its first games, that may not be the rule when the Marauders “welcome” the reigning Division 3 state champions Watertown which comes to Harris Field under the Friday Night Lights on Sept. 16. A week ago, Belmont’s neighbor defeated the Boston Globe’s preseason number one team, Andover, 2-1, in what has been called the “Battle of the Giants.”

Smith said her chief task is to have her team focus on what they have control over, being athletic in disrupting Watertown’s relentless attack and protecting goalie Julia Herlihy.

“It’s Watertown so it’s going to be tough,” said Smith.

Garvin Gets High Performance Marks From Belmont Select Board, 2.5 Percent Merit Increase Approved

Photo: Patrice Garvin at Monday’s Select Board meeting

As the town prepares to move forward with historic changes to its budget process and governmental structure, Belmont’s Chief Administrative Officer received top marks from the elected executive arm of the town during her annual performance review.

Each board member praised Town Administrator Patrice Garvin for her professionalism inside Town Hall and among residents and her fiscal leadership, for which the board gave her its highest marks.

“Her opinion is always valued, her financial insight is always detailed, and her view is always on what is best for Belmont,” wrote Select Board member Adam Dash. “She is a great Town Administrator, and Belmont would be worse off without her.”

Responding to the review, Garvin told the board that she sees it “as a privilege to come and work for the town of Belmont every day.” Noting that she could not do her job with her “amazing” staff and department heads, Garvin said there is “mutual trust and respect for each other, and it goes a long way” when some departments are “really bare bones” in staffing.

“As you know, that can be challenging … but I always keep in the back of my head that what I’m doing is for the residents. It’s not for myself. So I leave my ego at the door, and I keep working.”

According to Human Resources Director Shawna Healey, Garvin’s performance review consisted of self-evaluation and a number-based performance evaluation on all aspects of her role as the town’s chief administrative officer. After calculating the board’s ratings on several categories, including personal characteristics, professionalism, her relationship with the board, and organizational leadership, Garvin received an overall rating of 4.67 out of 5.

Last year, amid Covid-19-related restrictions and budget constraints, Garvin received a 4.16 rating.

If there was one area, the board noted her expertise was in financial management, which each member rated her as a ‘5’ in the category’s six subsets.

“Patrice is an expert financial manager,” wrote Roy Epstein. “The [fiscal year] ’24 budget process will be a critical test of her abilities. Simple and clear communication with the public on these topics is also very important.”

Galvin’s lowest ratings came in the Public Relations/Communications category, with a need to be more effective in transmitting the goals and aims of the town to the public.

Saying that Garvin should remember to emphasize her own professional development, Dash noted while he “appreciates her frank and direct approach, sometimes a softer response would work better.”

The board approved a 2.5 percent merit increase at Monday’s meeting, in line with what the police and fire chiefs recently received as part of their reviews, said Healey. The merit increase is retroactive to July 1, the same date as a 2 percent cost of living adjustment. Garvin’s current annual salary after the two adjustments is $202,156.

Three Cardboard Drop-Off Days Are Coming To Belmont’s DPW Yard

Photo: Belmont will hold three cardboard drop off events starting in October

Where do you stack the cardboard boxes that brought your online purchases? In the garage? How about the corner of your office? Or the basement where it has taken the form of a corrugated fiberboard Mt. Everest.

Well, you’ll soon have the opportunity to rid all those cartons out of your abode as Belmont will provide residents three days to drop-off those piles of cardboard, according to Jay Marcotte, director of the Department of Public Works.

“It’s that time of year,” Marcotte told the Belmont Select Board at its Monday, Sept. 12 meeting, when the town creates the schedule for paid drop off events.

Unlike past years when the town held a pair of events on either side of the Christmas holiday, demand for the service – which is revenue neutral – necessitates a extra day.

“We are slammed with phone calls right now,” said Marcotte, noting at a recent event, 400 cars lined up to toss their boxes.

The events will take place on:

  • Saturday, Oct. 22
  • Saturday, Dec. 3
  • Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023

Location: the DPW Yard off of C Street.

Cost: $5. “The fee seems to work best at $5; that seems like the magic number for participation,” said Marcotte. Residents can use an on-line registration form on the Recreation Department‘s web page or come to cash or a check written out to the “Town of Belmont.”

Frosh Has The ‘Get Out Of Jail’ Card In 1-1 Comeback In Belmont Girls’ Soccer’s Season Opener

Photo: Belmont High Freshman Danika Zicha scores in her first game (and first day as a high schooler) to give the Marauders a point in the 2022 season opener against Stoneham

It was Belmont High freshman Danika Zicha who had the “Get out of Jail” card for new coach Jemmy Cange as the ninth grader’s first high school goal – and certainly not her last – with 11 minutes remaining in the game salvaged a point in the 2022 opener held at Harris Field Wednesday, Sept. 7

“It felt great,” said Zicha post-game scoring on what likely will be her signature move for the next four years: outsprinting an opponent and rocketing a shot from a tight angle to salvage a point with the Spartans.

“New team, new school, and we got the tie,” said Zicha.

Zicha’s solo heroics came three minutes after the Spartans’ Jillian Spinali’s long-distance strike eluded an outstretched Yuval Golani to give Stoneham a well-deserved lead in a game where Belmont’s high preseason injury count was felt on the field.

“First games have a lot going on in them, a lot of nerves. But I like the fight and effort they put out, and that was good to see,” said Cange.

The first half was fairly uneventful as both teams were getting used to the varsity season. Belmont goalkeeper Golani kept the game at zeros with first-class one-arm diving save on a Stoneham half-break with eight minutes left in the first half. As the game progressed, Stoneham began dominating the midfield and were dangerous on set plays. It was off a corner with 14 minutes remaining that Spinali drove the first goal from beyond the penalty area.

But Zicha finally had the chance to show off her speed to round the defender and shot in stride passed the goalie.

Belmont’s second game didn’t have as beneficial an outcome as the Marauders’ traditional rival Winchester scored three in the second half to come away with a 3-0 win on Friday, Sept. 9. Belmont’s midfield kept the team from Winchester from developing an attack while the visitors kept Zicha and sophomore speedster Anna Santos at bay with a bit of the physical play by bodying the youngsters.

Winchester scored twice early in the second within two minutes with a straight on shot over Golani’s arms and from a corner. Belmont didn’t have an answer, running out of steam as the half progressed.

For the second game running, Belmont junior central defender Hannah Glavin was stellar in the middle of the defense, shutting down numerous attacks coming through the middle of the pitch.

“We do a good job keeping our opponants from our goal which also gets us on the offense,” she said.

The team is on the road Monday, Sept 12, against Melrose before hosting the annual Soccer Night In Belmont against Watertown on Saturday, Sept. 17 at 5 p.m.