Now Into Its Sixth Decade, Belmont Lions Has The Right X-Mas Tree For Everyone

Photo: The Folan’s have their perfect tree.

While growing up as a child in the UK, Somerset Street’s Edward Young would join his family as they would go out and “dig out or cut our Christmas tree.”

But on Sunday afternoon, Nov. 29, with his family in tow, Young came to Royal Road adjacent to the commuter rail station to select a tree from a few hundred. 

“This is much easier,” he said of his yearly trek to the Belmont Lions Club Christmas Tree and Wreath Sale. 

And he has a particular type.

“I look for the right height for the house and that it’s nice and bushy,” said Young. 


The Youngs joined a steady stream of residents and people from surrounding towns to the annual migration of folks who for the past half century have ventured down to the Lions Club in Belmont Center looking for that “right” Christmas tree (all from one farm in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia); the one that fills the living room, frames the front window or stands on the upstairs landing. 

From 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (they may close up a little early on bad weather nights), the Belmont Lions –  one of 46,000 local clubs worldwide with more than 1.35 million members in 200 countries – will be there to help you find “your” tree.


Dan MacAuley, a Lions past president, said he and his 60 fellow members (supplemented by volunteers from the Belmont High School sports teams) will spend the last Saturday in November until Christmas Eve selling approximately 2,700 trees – all balsam firs – and more than 2,000 wreaths, mantle pieces, and cemetery baskets.

Price is determined by the “official” measuring stick located next where the trees are prepared for traveling; a 7-footer will put you back $43.

But don’t wait until the last minute to get “your” tree.

“They’ve sold out every year I’ve been here, and I have doing this for 14 years,” said MacAuley.

The sale’s proceeds go to help the Lions Internationals’ SightFirst programs focusing on its Childhood Blindness Project and other sight-related charities as well as funding a pair of scholarships at Belmont High School.

“A lot of it stays here in town,” said MacAuley.


This year, change and donations placed in the “tip” jar will go to Belmont S.P.O.R.T. (Special Programs Organized for Recreation Time) which provides activities for individuals of all ages with special needs.

Peter Folan from Monroe Street came with the wife and kids and found “the perfect tree for the occasion,” said Folan.

Why is it the right tree?

“It’s the perfect height, and it’s plump and it resembles his dad,” said Folan, pointing to his son.


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[PHOTOS] High School Prepares for Turkey Day at Pep Rally

Photo: All hail the pie-eating champion!

On Wednesday morning, Nov. 25, before the start of the four-day Thanksgiving Day recess, Belmont High School’s Wenner Field House became home to a “battle of the classes” as seniors, juniors, sophomores and lowly freshmen would decide which graduating year would dominate this year’s Pep Rally before the annual football tussle between Belmont and Watertown.

The morning proceeded with the March Band belting out its musical routine, fall athletic teams presented to the crowd, the cheerleaders flew into the air and a slew of fun events were contested including a pie-eating contest, tricycle races, tug-of-war (in which the junior class won by default) and musical chairs.

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Sold in Belmont: The Roof on the Exploding Colonial, No-So-High French Country

Photo: 25 Greensbrook Way.

A weekly recap of residential properties sold in the past seven-plus days in the “Town of Homes:

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15 Temple St., Colonial (1928). Sold: $1,060,000.

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47 Homer Rd., Colonial (1940). Sold: $917,500.

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10 Marlboro St., Unit 1., Condominium (2006). Sold: $420,000.

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93 Country Club Lane, French Country-style (1938). Sold: $894,000.

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138 Dean St., Brick Ranch (1957). Sold: $765,00.

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25 Greensbrook Way, Great exploding Colonial (2008). Sold: $2,010,000.

15 Temple St., Colonial (1928). Sold: $1,060,000. Listed at $1,150,000,. Living area: 2,426  sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 2 full, 2 half baths. On the market: 68 days.

10 Marlboro St., Unit 1., Condominium (2006). Sold: $420,000. Listed at $449,000. Living area: 1,140 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath. On the market: 74 days.

47 Homer Rd., Colonial (1940). Sold: $917,500. Listed at $885,000. Living area: 2,094 sq.-ft. 8 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. On the market: 130 days.

93 Country Club Lane, French Country-style (1938). Sold: $894,000. Listed at $1,149,000 Living area: 2,225 sq.-ft. 5 rooms, 4 bedrooms, 3 baths. On the market: 65 days.

138 Dean St., Brick Ranch (1957). Sold: $765,00. Listed at $789,000. Living area: 1,353 sq.-ft. 7 rooms, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths. On the market: 61 days.

25 Greensbrook Way, Great exploding Colonial (2008). Sold: $2,010,000. Listed at $2,245,000. Living area: 5,663 sq.-ft. 10 rooms, 5 bedrooms, 4.5 baths. On the market: 92 days.

The town calls the design of the pretty house on Country Club Lane a “French Country style” house, which, while popular in some part of the country, never really caught on here.

On closer inspection, the Belmont structure has few of the typical design elements associated with the French countryside; stonework and stone floors, wood beams, a large fireplace, small, panelled windows with heavy shutters and a mishmash of styles.

It was also overpriced, even by Belmont Hill standards. Nearing 80 years old without any significant improvements, a nearly $1.15 million price tag – or more than $500 per square foot (that’s new construction value) sent most people out the door.  It’s little wonder the owners took a steep $200,000 reduction in the initial offer.

• • •

The builders of the structure on nearby Greensbrook Way decided they needed to build the equivalent of a second house on the sode of their massive exploding Colonial. Because who doesn’t have use for nearly 5,700 square feet of livable space! You literally need roller skates to effectively get around the place. The “main” section is all about space with a massive 19-foot ceiling height (If you need to ask how do you heat this barn, you can’t afford it!) and blown out walls to give almost freakish amount of openiness. And what wouldn’t a house be without a 1,000 sq. ft. master suite. The secondary section has bedrooms, au-pair suites, a media room and three vehicle garage. 

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Built and first sold in 2008, there is one thing somewhat particular about the house: it appears to have a hard ceiling on the final sales price. Both in 2008 and this year, the house sold for a deep discount of its list price, coming in at $2,010,000 (giving back $685,000 and $235,000 respectively) each time. You can understand the first sale being impacted by the financial crisis on 2008-9 but what kept the buyers holding onto their wallets is a question mark. Is the popularity of the “small(er)” house movement creeping upward impacting the supply of high-end buyers?

This Week: Quarter Century of ‘Turn on the Town’ This Thursday

On the government side of “This Week”

  • The School Committee meets at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 1, at the Chenery Middle School.
  • The Planning Board will be holding a meeting on Thursday, Dec. 3, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Town Hall. 
  • The Municipal Light Board is meeting on Friday, Dec. 4 at 3 p.m. at Town Hall to receive an update on the substation and transmission project.

Music & Movement with Rubi, a movement and music program recommended for ages 3 to 5 (but 2-year-olds are welcome) will be held in the Assembly Room on Monday, Nov. 30.  There will be two sessions: 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

• ESL Conversation Circle for beginners takes place on Monday, Nov. 30 from 10 a.m. to noon in the Belmont Public Library’s Flett Room.

Belmont Against Racism will be holding its monthly meeting on Monday, Nov. 30 from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Assembly Room of the Belmont Public Library.

• The Belmont Food Collaborative – the people who run the Belmont Farmers Market – is meeting on Monday, Nov. 30, at 7 p.m., in the Flett Room of the Belmont Public Library.

Tuesday is story time at both of Belmont libraries.

  • Pre-School Story Time at the Benton Library, Belmont’s independent and volunteer-run library, at 10:30 a.m. Stories and crafts for children age 3 to 5. Parents or caregivers must attend. Siblings may attend with adults. Registration is not required. The Benton Library is located at the intersection of Oakley and Old Middlesex.
  • Pre-School Storytime at the Belmont Public Library beginning at 9:30 a.m.We’ll read longer books, sing and dance, and make simple crafts. For 3-5-year-olds with a longer attention span.

• The Teen Book Club for 9th-12th graders will be discussing “Half Brother” by Kenneth Oppel on Tuesday, Dec. 1, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Young Adult Room of the Belmont Public Library. Any teen who has read the book is welcome to attend, no sign up necessary. There will be pizza and snacks. If you have any questions, please e-mail Kylie Sparks at or call 617-993-2873.

• Yoga for Everyone at the Beech Street Center on Tuesday, Dec. 1, from 5:30 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.: Join Susan Harris, a registered yoga teacher and associate professor of Nutrition at Tufts University for this Iyengar-inspired class which practices yoga postures slowly and with attention to alignment and safety, adapted to the abilities and needs of individual students. Practice is done with bare feet; mats and props are provided. Cost: $15/class. Non-seniors, beginners and experienced are welcome. This is a non-Council on Aging class held at the Beech Street Center. For more information, call Susan at 617-407-0816.

• Infant Storytime, for infants up to 12 months and pre-walkers, includes a short program of songs and rhymes followed by time to play and socialize. The fun takes place on Wednesday, Dec. 210:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. in the Belmont Public Library’s Flett Room.

Sustainable Belmont will be meeting on Wednesday, Dec. 2 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Belmont Public Library’s Flett Room.

• The monthly meeting of the Belmont Historical Society Board is taking place on Wednesday, Dec. 2, from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Claflin Room of the Belmont Public Library. 

• A special night for many Belmont High School students as they will be inducted into the National Honor Society at a ceremony in the school’s auditorium on Wednesday, Dec. 2 at 7 p.m.

• Meeting of the Friends of the Belmont Public Library is taking place on Thursday, Dec. 3 from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. in the library’s Assembly Room.

• Belmont’s own Harry Potter Fan Club will magically meet on Thursday, Dec. 3, from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Flett Room of Belmont Public Library.

• The Claus’ are coming to Belmont on Thursday! The 25th annual Turn on the Town Celebration will take place at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 3 along Leonard Street in Belmont Center. Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive aboard a Belmont Fire Engine then help turn on the Christmas tree next to the Bellmont Cafe at 6:20 p.m. before heading to Belmont Savings Bank – this year’s main sponsor – where they will have their photos taken with good boys and girls until 8 p.m. There will be music, food, hot stuff to drink, fake snow, bank employees dressed up, animals and lots more. 

This year, you can help those in need and education in Belmont at the same time by participating in the Hammond Residential’s “Belmont Food Pantry Drive” For every food item donated to the Belmont Food Pantry during the food drive (Nov. 30 to Dec. 3 at Hammond Residential, 84 Leonard St. and on Turn on the Town in front of il Casale, 50 Leonard), Hammond Residential will donate $1 to the Foundation for Belmont Education. In addition, during the Food Pantry Drive, Hammond will match any cash/check donations made to the Belmont Food Pantry with a matching gift to the Foundation for Belmont Education.

• Literacy Playgroup is a parent and child group that supports child’s language and literacy development on Friday, Dec. 410:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. in Flett Room. You’ll play, read, sing and take home new ideas. Presented by educators from the CFCE grant program; for children age 4 and under.

Sports: Upset-Minded Belmont Football Falls to Final Minute Watertown FG, 24-22

Photo: Belmont RB Ben Jones runs through a wide opening in the line to score late in the fourth quarter against Watertown.

In what will be remembered as an epic Thanksgiving Day clash, Belmont’s bid for a memorable upset of arch rivals and host Watertown was derailed by the foot of sophomore Conor Kennelly as the Raiders’ kicker hit a field goal from 35 yards out with 56 seconds remaining to give Watertown a 24-22 victory over the Mauraders on Thursday, Nov. 26 at Victory Field.

“We played a great football game, all aspects of it. Our coaches did a tremendous job, planning it up for them. I was really proud of the effort we put forth in this game,” said Belmont Head Coach Yann Kuman, who fought off his emotions to reach out to his players.

“I hope that we sent a message to people in general that Belmont football is on the rise and Belmont football is here to stay. Get ready for us because we’re going to lick our wounds and in a month we will be back in the weight room getting ready for 2016,” said Kuman.

Calling his team’s performance Thursday, “the season’s most complete game from both sides of ball,” Kuman said the players and coaches stayed with the plans mapped out in the past two weeks in preparation for Watertown’s rushing attack and strong defensive line

“We stuck with [our plan] even though we had some execution problems in the first quarter of defense, we didn’t abandon what we practiced and prepared for,” Kuman said. 

But for the fourth time in time this season, Belmont could not find a way to score or hold the lead at the end of the game.

“We have to be like the experience teams and know how to close out a game,” said Kuman.

One of Belmont’s season-long bugaboos raised its head once again as Watertown quickly marched down the field – aided by four offsides penalties against the Marauders – towards a go-ahead score. But Belmont’s interior defensive line spearheaded by senior Justin Aroyan and stopped Watertown’s running game inside the 5-yard line.

“The guys did a lot of work this week, and the coaches put in a lot of hours on the grease board and we came up with a good package,” said Kuman.

“We had faith in the guys in doing the job, and they did it,” he said., 

On his first passing attempt, Watertown junior QB Deon Smith threw the ball into the arms of junior Marauder defensive back Kevin Martin in the end zone at 4:43 in the first quarter.

After gaining a first down, Belmont’s drive stalled and on the subsequent punt attempt, the ball sailed over punter Aidan Cadogan’s head. When all was said and done, Watertown had the ball on the Marauders’ 19 when on their first play, Watertown’s Smith juked down the right side 19 yards for the opening touchdown with 56 seconds left in the first quarter.

After the kickoff, Belmont kept the ball for nearly eight minutes, mixing short runs by senior Mehki Johnson – which Watertown successfully bottled up for most of the game – and junior Ben Jones and passing by junior QB Cal Christofori to senior WR Justin Wagner (including a six-yard pickup on fourth down and four yards at the 18 yard line) culminating in Christofori finding senior WR Joe Shaughnessy on a seven-yard slant for the game-tying touchdown at 4:07 to the half.

Watertown quickly went downfield – helped by a Smith 30-yard run – finishing with senior running back Kyle Foley scoring on a 7-yard run with 41 seconds left.

But that was enough time for Christofori to complete three passes and for Johnson to break a 30 yard gain that allowed Cadogan to hit a line-drive field goal with three seconds remaining to cut the halftime lead to 14-10.

Watertown caught a break when the third quarter pooch kickoff eluded Belmont’s return team, and the Raiders recovered the ball on the Belmont 22. A few plays later, the score was 21-10 as Foley ran the ball in from 2 yards out early in the third.

But Belmont would not fold, coming out with a masterpiece of a drive,a 19 play, 11-minute possession (including a 15-yard roughing the passing personal foul on the Raiders) in which Belmont, behind the ever-improving offensive line – sophomores Dennis Crowley and Ryan Noone along with seniors Chris Piccione, Lowell Haska and Aroyan – and the bruising blocking from sophomore fullback Adam Deese saw Jones and Johnson eat up yards while Christofori connected with his favorite target Wagner.

The Marauders took the ball 81 yards where Johnson busted through for his 22nd touchdown of the season to shrink the lead to 21-16 with 9-minutes remaining. While it appeared Johnson had scored on the two-point conversion, the referees said the Belmont runner’s knee had first hit the ground.

A good kickoff return by Watertown was negated by a 15-yard personal foul penalty, and Belmont’s defense stuffed the Raiders on three consecutive plays. On fourth down, Wagner used his basketball reach to block the Watertown punt, and Belmont recovered the ball on the Raiders 10-yard line. Two plays later, Jones scored on a 4-yard run with 6:05 remaining in the fourth quarter, giving Belmont a 22-21 lead after missing the two-point conversion.

Watertown had the ball on the Belmont 45 and nearly lost the ball on a fumble and a near interception. On fourth down and 4 yards at the 38, Smith’s pass was a poor one, and Belmont took over on downs with 3:56 to play and up by a point.

A Christofori sprint pass to Wagner and Deese run gave Belmont a first and ten at its 48-yard line with 2:56 remaining. It appeared Belmont had sealed the upset when Johnson sprinted to the Raiders 20-yard line with 2:39 left, but the Marauders were penalized for holding. Belmont punted with 1:39 left giving the Raiders the ball on its 19.

Some hard running by Smith and a timely pass to senior Tyler Poulin coupled with two near interceptions by Belmont where Watertown receivers had to play “defense” gave Kennelly the opportunity to play the hero of the day.

Watertown now leads the yearly contest 46-43-5.

Players and coaches were resolute in defeat, showing their disappointment but also congratulating each other for the season they completed.

“The big statement of this game would have been winning it. But we’re proud of what we accomplished. This was a program with one win in two seasons, and now we’ve won seven in two [years] and competitive in all but two games this season,” Kuman said.

“The only emotion I have right now is pride. I’m proud how the kids played this year, how the coaches led the players. We’re proud where we are and really proud of what we did,” he said.

Jason Gay Reads From New Book as Mom Steals the Show

Photo: Stealing the show: Author Jason Gay with his proud mother, Marilyn.  

You can go home again. But you’ll probably have to share the moment with your mother.

And that was the case for the Wall Street Journal sports columnist Jason Gay as the Belmont-raised writer came back to his old hometown for a reading of his first book, Little Victories: Perfect Rules for Imperfect Living” (224 pages, Random House) at the Belmont Public Library on Nov. 12.

While the night was advertised as a night with Gay, someone forgot to tell his “mommy,” long-time and well-known Winn Brook Elementary teacher Marilyn Gay, who, like any proud mother, was ever present to provide praise and more than a few words of encouragement for her son.

Gay did note his mother rated his book on the book website Goodreads with four stars out of five. While saying he’d happily take a four-star review from any other reviewer, “this is my mother!”

“Even if mom thought the book was above average, four-star material, isn’t your mom suppose to give you a charity star?” pondered Gay.

“Had I done something to offend mom?” said Gay, going so far as to think maybe the fourth star was the charity star. When he finally broached the subject with her, Gay’s mother said, “I thought I gave you four our of four. Let me change that right NOW!”


“Anyone who knows me knows about my immense technological skills,” said Mrs. Gay.

“Mommy, this is my reading,” said Gay, to the amusement of the overflow crowd.

“For those of you who bought the book, Marilyn Gay will be signing them at the end of the evening,” he said. 

It was more a reunion than a book reading as the Assembly Room was well-packed – Gay said he was thankful a fire official wasn’t in attendance – with longtime friends, his mother’s longtime friends, relatives, family, neighbors, former Chenery Middle School English teachers, those who took tennis lessons from Jason and on-and-on.

“This is not necessarily thought I would say when I left Belmont in 1988 … There’s nothing like the passage of time to make you appreciate a place. And there is certainly nothing like having children of one’s own to understand what brought your parents to a place like this,” said Gay.


After a journalistic odyssey that included stops at a weekly newspaper in Martha’s Vineyard, the Boston Phoenix, New York Observer, GQ, and Rolling Stone, Gay is the WSJ’s humorous sports columnist, which he wrote in the book is “about as stupid as lucky a job you can have.” 

“The kind of job that makes you think that one day a stern-faced man will appear at the door and say, ‘There’s been a terrible mistake. You’re supposed to be managing a karaoke bar for dogs’.”

Gay’s quirky and wry observations of sports and its absurdities has won him a following among Journal readers. He is also known for his annual column on rules for the Thanksgiving afternoon family football game.

The book has been receiving outstanding reviews – People magazine called it “Hilarious … a tasty collection of advice about, for instance, mastering the office Christmas party or how to dress a slightly exhausted hipster dad.” – making it an Amazon Best Book for November.

The collection of “advice” trends from the humorous (the family Thanksgiving chapter), pointed (the impact of being fired) and heartfelt.

Gay said with two very young children back with his wife in Brooklyn, “I will go anywhere to support this book. This could be a truck stop on Route 9,”

When asking a fellow writer from Brooklyn who Gay calls “the cynical author guy” told Gay to get used to readings at libraries or bookstores “where no one will be there!” Gay pulled out his phone and took a “selfie” with the overflow audience to send to his “grizzled” acquaintance.

“I’m going to send this to Sebastian Junger,” said Gay, noting his fellow Belmont-raised author “got just about the same number of people.

Little Victories “began as a silly idea” as “a rule book basically for people who can’t follow rules,”

But it changed to a collection of incidents, events in Gay’s life that were every day but still important. 

“This is the truth. I don’t really believe that … the most important things in life are these seismic events, whether it’s going to college or having a family or … swimming under all the chairs at the Underwood Pool. The truth is it’s often the little things – if I can remember to plug my cell phone in before going to bed, if I can get the children out the door without either one of them crying, if I can get the children out the door without me crying – those are little victories.”


Gay then relayed the story of his father, educator and Cambridge Ringe and Latin tennis coach Ward Gay, and his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in 2014, and how friends and colleagues would be there for him, providing “simple things such as companionship, a conversation, a walk around the block when he felt up to [it].”

“These were small things, mundane life events but they became incredibly meaningful to all of us,” Gay recalled. And towards the end of his father’s life, it was “giving my dad these little victories, a little happiness, a little joy.”

“This isn’t just a business trip for me to come here to talk about a book. This is very personal not just because I grew up here but because my family has the deepest of deep roots here. This community has been here for my family repeatedly so thank you so much for that,” he said.

“That got a little heavy there for a second,” Gay said, flashing his trademark impish smile.

The remainder of the night was filled with stories, acknowledgements, and readings before both Gay and his mother ended the night autographing books.

Chair’s Sudden Resignation Has Planning Board Scrambling for New Member

Photo: Mike Battista (right) and current Selectman Sami Baghdady.

The sudden and unexpected resignation of the popular chair of the Belmont Planning Board has town officials scrambling to fill that slot just as the board tackles several high-profile tasks.

The departure of Mike Battista on Nov. 11 is a significant loss to the board as he takes half a decade of experience and institutional history with him, having been on the board since 2010 and chair since 2013.

“I enjoyed my time as a member and as chair, I got to work with amazing people, both my colleagues on the Board as well as Town Staff and Residents. Giving back to a great Town was worthwhile and fulfilling. I leave with wonderful memories knowing the Board is in good hands,” he said, as former Warrant Committee Chair Elizabeth Allison temporarily takes over the board’s reins.

“Five years is longer than I hoped to be involved and I felt it was a perfect time to move on. My travel and work schedules are more demanding leaving less time for the important business of the Planning Board,” said the president of Moniques Bath Showroom in Watertown.

Battista leaves as the board is working to establish a sweeping town-wide zoning realignment for residential structures while shepherding the long-delayed Cushing Village complex towards a conclusion.

To fill this critical post, the Belmont Board of Selectmen is seeking volunteers interested in serving on the Board for the remainder of Battista’s term that will expire on June 30, 2016.

The primary objective of the Planning Board is to protect and preserve the character and the quality of life that defines Belmont. The Board addresses numerous issues that will likely have an impact on Belmont’s future, such as:

  • drafting zoning proposals,
  • studying land-use patterns,
  • reviewing traffic concerns, and
  • evaluating specific development projects.

There is no set criteria for membership and those with a variety of backgrounds will be considered. Residents with a knowledge and experience in the areas of land use, planning, and related law are highly encouraged to apply.

To apply, residents must complete a Community Volunteer Interest Form and submit it to the Office of the Board of Selectmen along with the requested supporting documents.

Interest forms can be obtained on the Selectmen’s page of the Town website or by visiting the office during regular business hours. The Office of the Board of Selectman is located in Town Hall; forms can be submitted via e-mail to

The deadline for applying for the position is Wednesday, Dec. 9.


Sports: Nally Steals Show at All-Star Showcase

Photo: Serena Nally at the “Best of 60” all-star game.

Belmont High School senior Serena Nally stole the show at an all-star game for the best field hockey players in Massachusetts on Sunday.

A co-captain on Belmont’s 16-3 team, Nally scored two goals and handed out an assist as the North team defeated the squad from central Massachusetts, 4 to 1, at the “Best of 60 Senior All-Star Game” held Sunday, Nov. 22 at Bentley College. 

Nally is only the second Belmont High player to have been selected for the showcase game sponsored by the Massachusetts State Field Hockey Coaches Association, joining Becca Moore, who went on to play four years at Bentley.  

Town Wide, Town Meeting Nomination Papers Available Next Week

Photo: Nomination papers 

Belmont Town Clerk Ellen Cushman told The Belmontonian nomination papers for Town Meeting and Town-wide office will be available at the Clerk’s Office starting next week. 

Cushman said she has yet to set the deadline for returning nomination papers to the Town Clerk’s office. 

The 2016 Town Election will take place on Tuesday, April 5. 

If you’re thinking of running for elected office in Belmont, Cushman is advising potential “runners” to take a look at the guide for Belmont’s elected government and how to run for elected office in the “Town of Homes.”

To be considered a candidate for town-wide office (such as selectman, school committee and several boards), you must be at least 18 years old and a registered voter in Belmont.

All candidates for town-wide office must secure the signatures of at least 50 registered Belmont voters. Cushman recommends that more signatures are collected and submitted in the event that some signatures are invalid. Holiday parties and get-togethers are great places to start gathering signatures.

Town Meeting Members whose terms expire in 2016 will receive a letter from the Town Clerk’s office by January asking if you would like to be considered a candidate for re-election. The member must sign and return the affirmation form to the Town Clerk’s office to be considered a candidate for re-election. 

Candidates for Town Meeting must secure the signatures of at least 25 registered voters from the precinct and return the signed nomination papers. Once again, Cushman recommends that more signatures are collected and submitted in the event that some signatures are invalid.

Sixty-six Belmont Student Musicians Earn District Honors

Photo: Belmont High student musicians.

On Saturday, Nov. 14, 143 Belmont High School music students traveled to North Andover High School to audition for the Massachusetts Music Educators Northeast District Senior Festival. These students were among the 1,127 students from surrounding towns vying for the opportunity to perform in one of the District Honors ensembles: Band, Chorus, Orchestra and Jazz Ensemble. Each student worked for months to prepare for their audition, which required a great amount of time, effort and courage.

Belmont is proud to announce that 66 Belmont student musicians were accepted to perform in the Senior District Festival. The number of students choosen matches the all-times high for acceptances from BHS set in 2014, which included many of the same musicians.

Additionally, more than half, 36, of those selected also earned All-State Recommendations, offering them the opportunity to audition for the MMEA All-State Festival in January.

Join the district in congratulating the following students on their acceptance into one of the Senior District Honors Ensembles (*denotes All-State Recommendation):

  • Jason Ackerson, trombone
  • Sam Bastille, chorus
  • James Boyle, chorus
  • Anthony Bulat, chorus
  • Caroline Burns, chorus
  • Erin Cantor, viola
  • *Eleanor Carlile, French horn
  • *Jessica Chen, viola
  • Josie Cooper, clarinet
  • Ben Crocker, chorus
  • *Jocelyn Cubstead, chorus
  • Benjy Cunningham, chorus
  • Victor Dankens, chorus
  • Eleanor Dash, trumpet
  • *Ammu Dinesh, bassoon
  • * Julia Fontana, cello
  • * Mary Gastian, chorus
  • Christopher Giron, bassoon
  • Fiona Grant, clarinet
  • * Tenny Gregorian, chorus
  • Peter Grifiths, chorus
  • * Hisako Gutterman, trombone
  • Sammy Haines, chorus
  • Seneca Hart, chorus
  • * Kiara Holm, clarinet
  • * Wonyoung Jang, euphonium
  • Rachel Jansen, cello
  • Kevin Ji, violin
  • * Eliza Jones, French horn
  • * Brandon Kim, violin
  • * Helena Kim, euphonium
  • Isabelle Kim, violin
  • * James Kitch, cello
  • Elizabeth Knight, string bass
  • * David Korn, chorus
  • * Oliver Leeb, chorus
  • * Stephen Lucas, clarinet
  • Meggie MacAulay, chorus
  • Anna Makar-Limanov, chorus
  • Wilder Manion, chorus
  • * Raffi Manjikian, chorus
  • * Eli Martin, trombone
  • * Hannah Messenger, French horn
  • * Alex Park, jazz trumpet
  • * Georgia Parsons, chorus
  • * Maerose Pepe, chorus
  • * Calvin Perkins, trumpet
  • * Olivia Pierce, chorus
  • * Audrey Quinn, violin
  • * Connor Quinn, chorus
  • * Hannah Read, flute/piccolo
  • Paul Rhee, violin
  • * Annalise Schlaug, cello
  • * Lila Searls, alto saxophone
  • * Ned Searls, trumpet
  • * Sam Sorensen, chorus
  • * Lea Grace Swinson, chorus
  • Gillian Tahajian, flute
  • Swapnil Thapa, chorus
  • * Rafi Wagner, trombone
  • Tina Wang, euphonium
  • * Quincy Webb, chorus
  • Alexander Wilk, viola
  • Jiwon Yoon, cello
  • Lara Zeng, violin
  • * Anya Zhang, flute