Boisterous Gathering Highlights 15th Meet Belmont

Photo: William Lovallo, chair of the Belmont High School Building Committee discuss the process of building a new/renovated high school.

The 15th edition of Meet Belmont was a combination of loud and crowded as a wide swath of town residents came to the Chenery Middle School on Tuesday, Aug. 29 to discover what makes the community run. 

With government, education, local nonprofit and faith groups at tables in the school’s cafeteria, the public had the chance to learn about the vast array of resources, services, and opportunities offered in and around our town.

“I think it went very well and I know that because I’m exhausted.  said Natalie Leino, who as the chair of the Belmont Vision 21 Implementation Committee took over the management of the late summer get together a year ago from Sara Oaklander and Jennifer Paige who held the event at the Belmont Public Library in the early years.

This year saw a greater proportion of racial and ethnic diversity at the event, said Leino.

“I think this year we had a high proportion of first time, just new to Belmont people. We had a nusome groups this year including a South Asian theater group and a Chinese American community group. It feels that as we get more diverse exhibitors it helps makes for a greater variety of people,” she said.

The event was also an opportunity for newbies and, old timers to (re)introduce themselves to local government – a number of folks registered to vote Tuesday while other discussed the latest scheduled blackouts with reps from Belmont Light – and community groups representing everything from residents raising money for PQ Park, intergenerational nature programs, morris dancing, and Belmont history. One of the most visited exhibits was a relief map of the vicinity around Belmont High School which will be the location of a renovated/new school. 

Carrying table placards and answering a myriad of questions from other volunteers, Leino said a small group of volunteers put in a lot of work “but it’s worth it because clearly people love this event,” she said noting the cafeteria was packed for most of the two hours of the exhibit. 

“There aren’t many towns that have something like this to learn about everything in town all in one place,” said Leino.

Meet Belmont Presents Talk of the Town on Tuesday, March 21

Photo: Poster of the event.

The Vision 21 Implementation Committee has added to the extremely popular late summer “Meet Belmont” community get together with a new event called “Talk of the Town.”

Co-sponsored by Belmont Public Schools, “Talk of the Town” will be held on Tuesday, March 21 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Chenery Middle School Auditorium, 95 Washington St.

Journalist/author/radio host Jane Clayson Johnson will welcome four notable Belmont residents, each sharing ideas and insights from their work and/or personal interests:

  • Clayton Christensen, Harvard Business School
  • Alfie Kohn, author and lecturer on education and parenting
  • Rupal Patel, Northeastern University Communication Sciences and Disorders and entrepreneur
  • Elissa Ely, physician, author, founder of the WBUR Remembrance Project

Admission is free and all Belmont resident, young and old, are invited to attend.