Belmont Musicians, Singers Ready to Welcome Spring At Concerts March 9, 10

Photo: Sandro Botticelli’s Primavera

Welcome spring with music and song at a pair of concerts performed by Belmont musicians being performed on the second week of March.

The Belmont-Watertown United Methodist Church, 421 Common St. in Cushing Square, will present its Annual Spring Concert on Saturday, March 9 at 7 p.m. in support of New England Justice For Our Neighbors (NEJFON), an organization providing free expert legal advice to low- and no-income immigrants.    

Featuring B-WUMC music director, Yilin You, and an outstanding collection of musician friends will perform music ranging from classical to jazz, in forms of violin/piano duo, brass ensemble, and piano four-hands in the church’s sanctuary followed by refreshments in the parlor.

A $20 donation is suggested to NEJFON at the door or give by contacting

On street parking will be available. A handicapped entrance is located off the small parking lot in the back of the church.

On the next day, the Philharmonic Society of Arlington presents the Arlington-Belmont Chorale and Arlington-Belmont Chamber Chorus in An Almost Spring Concert, on Sunday, March 10 at 3 p.m. at First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church, 630 Massachusetts Ave. in Arlington. 

Music Director Barry Singer and Assistant Conductor Ana Zecic Jeffers will lead the Chorale in a diverse musical program including 

  • Missa Brevis by Dietrich Buxtehude
  • Messe Basse by Gabriel Faure
  • Crossing the Bar by Gwyneth Walker
  • O Love by Elaine Hagenberg
  • Celebrations by Vincent Persichetti, accompanied by members of the Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra.

The Chamber Chorus, under the direction of Barry Singer, will reprise a commissioned work, Three Poems of L. M. Montgomery, by Kenneth Seitz, accompanied by Julie Goldberg, flute.

Tickets are purchased at the door. $20 General Admission; $15 Seniors/Students; $5 Children 17 and under. This venue is wheelchair accessible. Masking is optional.

What’s Open/Closed On Presidents’ Day 2024 In Belmont; Trash/Recycling Delayed A Day

Photo: Presidents’ Day in Belmont, 2024

Two for the price of one. Living in Massachusetts allows residents to have your choice of who we are celebrating on the third Monday of February.

Presidents’ Day is a commemoration of George Washington’s Feb. 22 birthday. And since it fell near the Feb. 12 birthday of Abraham Lincoln, the federal government in 1971 included the two birthdays under one holiday.

And here is a bit of trivia: The Bay State officially celebrates “Washington’s Birthday” on the same day as the federal holiday. So take your pick.

Trash and recycling curbside pick up is delayed by a day.


  • Belmont Town offices – Town Hall, Homer Building – and Belmont Light.
  • Belmont Public Schools are on winter recess.
  • Belmont Public Library at the Beech Street Center and the Benton Library.
  • US Postal Service offices On Concord Avenue and Trapelo Road: No deliveries.
  • Banks; although some branches will be open in supermarkets.
  • MBTA: Operating on a Saturday schedule. See for details.


• Retail stores

• Coffee shops; Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts are open

• Supermarkets

• Convenience stores, and

• Establishments that sell beer and wine are also allowed to be open.

What’s Open/Closed On The Martin Luther King Day Holiday; Trash/Recycling Pickups Delayed A Day

Photo: Dr. Martin Luther King (credit: National Archives and Records Administration)

Now celebrating its 38th year as a federal holiday, Martin Luther King Day – observed on the third Monday in January – honors the civil rights leader and (the youngest at 35) Nobel Prize for Peace recipient who advocate for nonviolent social change leading to the enactment of such landmark federal laws as the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. His writings and speeches continue to inspire people and groups to strive in promoting racial equality and humanitarian rights for all.

Belmont will be holding its 30th Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. (Virtual) Community Breakfast on Monday, Jan. 15, at 9 a.m. Sponsored by the Belmont Human Rights Commission in support of the METCO Program and METCO Support Fund, this year’s keynote address will be by Danielle Johnson, founder/CEO of Spark FM Online and a Belmont Public Schools alumnae. Register for this free event here.

Trash and Recycling Pickup is delayed by a day

What’s open and closed on MLK Day:

  • Belmont Town Hall and town departments/offices are closed
  • Belmont Public Schools: closed
  • United States Postal Service Offices at 405 Concord Ave. and 492 Trapelo Rd.: closed
  • Federal and state offices: closed
  • Banks: closed

MBTA schedules:

  • Buses, subway and The Ride: Saturday schedule
  • Commuter rail: Weekday schedule


  • Most retail and drug stores, pharmacies and businesses will be open on the holiday.

Belmont World Film’s 21st Family Festival from January 13-21: ‘A Shared Experience Children Will Never Forget’

Photo: A still from Tony, Shelly and the Magic Light, an award-winning original, stop motion animated film which is receiving its US premiere at the Belmont World Film 21st Family Festival.

For the 21st time, Belmont World Film presents a cinema festival that children from 3 to 12 – and their parents – can enjoy!

Films from around the world in English and multiple languages, including Chinese, Czech, French, Dutch, Norwegian and sign language will be presented this holiday weekend as Belmont World Film hosts its 21st Family Festival, a four-day celebration of international culture from January 13-21, guaranteeing an immersive and culturally rich experience for young audiences.

The trailer for the 2024 Belmont World Film Family Festival

The lineup includes a carefully curated mix of animated and live-action feature length and short films, offering something for every age group.

“Films from abroad are known for telling wonderful stories rather than relying heavily on special effects, and they are often set in fascinating locations outside the US, or feature eye-popping hand-drawn and stop motion animation,” says Belmont World Film Executive Director Ellen Gitelman. “Being able to watch these adventurous films on a big screen as a shared experience is something children will never forget.” 

The festival kicks off Saturday, January 13 at Apple Cinemas in Cambridge (168 Alewife Brook Parkway, followed by screenings at West Newton Cinema (1296 Washington St.) on Sunday, January 14, the Brattle Theatre in Cambridge (40 Brattle Street) on Monday, January 15, in celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Day, and the Regent Theatre in Arlington (7 Medford Street) on Sunday, January 21. Three shorts programs will also be available online from January 20-21, geared to children age 3-8.

See the complete program of films here:

Subtitles for films in languages other than English will be read aloud through headphones, ensuring an inclusive experience for children with difficulty reading. Many films are making their US or New England premieres; most films are also based on classic and contemporary children’s books, which help reinforce an interest in reading and literature, while supplementing the Massachusetts Public School System’s Curriculum Frameworks.

Belmont World Film is grateful to the Family Festival sponsors including Dutch Culture USA, the Norwegian Consulate General in New York, the Quebec Delegation of Boston, and Belmont Day School for their generous support, enabling the realization of this culturally enriching festival.

Tickets are $12 for feature films and $8 for shorts programs; Three shorts programs (Celebrating 70 Years of Weston Woods Studios, LOL with Mo Willems Films, and Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) will also be available virtually for $15 per program from January 20-21. 

Festival Passes, which include admission to all films are $40. VIP Festival passes are $120 and include all films, the workshop, two t-shirts, and recognition in all of Belmont World Film’s programs for a year. EBT, WIC, and ConnectorCare cardholder tickets are half price. Tickets and more info are available at or by calling 617-484-3980.

Belmont Police Issues Snow Emergency Parking Ban Beginning Late Saturday As Winter Storm Watch Is Declared

Photo: Parking ban begins 11:45 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6.

In an attempt to get ahead of the first nor’easter of the winter, the Belmont Police Department has announced a Snow Emergency Parking Ban on all town roadways, as well as in municipal parking lots and Belmont Public School parking lots, effective Saturday Jan. 6, at 11:45 p.m. and continuing until further notice. Any vehicle parked in violation of the ban will be towed at the owner’s expense.

The ban comes as the Boston office of the National Weather Service issued a Winter Storm Watch from Saturday afternoon through late Sunday night for eastern Massachusetts including Belmont.

“Heavy snow possible. Total snow accumulations of 3 to 8 inches possible. Winds could gust as high as 35 mph,” according to the NWS which released the warning at 4:34 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 5.

Town officials are reminding residents the town’s residential snow removal bylaw requires sidewalks along residential property to be cleared of snow and ice by 8 p.m. the day after a storm ends. Snow and ice should be cleared or treated from sidewalks to a width of at least 36 inches.

Residents should go to the town’s web site for further information regarding winter weather and the town’s snow removal bylaw .

Belmont Winter Special Town Meeting: Virtual Session Set For Jan. 22 On Board Of Assessors

Photo: The current board of assessors (from left) Charles R. Laverty, Robert P. Reardon, Patrick Murphy with Dan Dargon, the Assessing Administrator

A winter Special Town Meeting is all set as the Belmont Select Board opened and closed the warrant for an all-virtual meeting assembly dedicated to a single proposition: to transition the Board of Assessors from an elected to an appointed council.

The fully remote meeting will occur on Monday, Jan. 22, 2024, at 7 p.m.

The article awaiting the members originated as a citizen petition from Precinct 8’s Angus Abercrombie for the fall Special Meeting in November. Due to the heavy agenda facing the meeting, Moderator Mike Widmer asked Abercrombie to have the petition moved to the new year, where it would receive the attention it deserved.

A recommendation in a 2022 review of the town’s financial structure by the Edward J. Collins, Jr. Center for Public Management at UMass Boston, the change in the Board of Assessors structure will bring an essential element in the town’s fiscal structure under the umbrella of the financial director. Earlier this year, the post of Town Treasurer was made an appointed position.

The current board comprises long-time Chair Robert P. Reardon, Charles R. Laverty, III, and Patrick J. Murphy, IV.

‘Hallelujah’: Handel’s Messiah Sing-A-Long At Payson Park Church, Saturday, Dec. 9

Photo: A Messiah Sing Along at Payson Park Church on Saturday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m.

Why just listen to the great choruses – including the rousing “Hallelujah” – of George Handel’s “Messiah” this Christmas season?

Here is your chance to step out from the audience and be a performer.

The Payson Park Church will be presenting the holiday tradition a ‘Messiah’ Sing Along, on Saturday, Dec 9, at 7 p.m. Tenor Michael Gonzalez, Mezzo Heather Gallagher, Soprano Julie Wu and Baritone Raphael Laden-Guindon will be the night’s soloists with the choruses handled by the audience, all under the direction of Leah Kosch.

There’s no registration necessary and it’s free to attend. Just bring a score – you can find it on line. There’ll be hot cider and cocoa afterwards.

A freewill donation will support the hungry through The Outdoor Church.

Payson Park Church is located at the corner of Belmont Street and Payson Road at 365 Belmont St.

Belmont Health Dept. Holding Vaccine Clinic On Wed. Dec. 6 At Beth El Temple

Photo: Vaccine clinic on Dec. 6 at Beth El

The Belmont Health Department is partnering with Osco Pharmacy to provide a pre-holiday vaccine clinic for Belmont residents.

Belmont’s Vaccine Clinic will be held on Wednesday, December 6 from 10:00 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Beth El Temple Center, 2 Concord Ave.

Register here:

Vaccines will be available for anyone ages three and older. Based on your eligibility, this clinic will have Flu (regular and high dose), COVID-19, Pneumonia, RSV, shingles, and tetanus vaccines available. Talk to your doctor if you have questions about your vaccine eligibility.

Please bring your insurance cards to the clinic as insurance is required for vaccination. Once appointments are fully booked, walk-ins will be accepted at this clinic based on availability for adults and children for COVID and Flu.

If you have difficulty with registration, call 617-993-2720 or email for assistance.

League’s Brown Bag Lunch To Update Public On New Library’s Future And

Photo: The Belmont Public Library, circa 2025

The Belmont League of Women Voters is holding its next Brown Bag Lunch on Friday, Dec. 1, from noon to 1:30 p.m., the subject will be an update on the Belmont Public Library while the new library building is constructed.

Bring your lunch; the lunch will be virtual, so members and the public can join from home.

Kathy Keohane, chair of the Board of Library Trustees, and Library Director Peter Struzziero will discuss and answer questions on a wide array of topics, including the demolition of the current structure and construction of the new library, the status of programming and events, as well as an update on the relocation of books and services during the year-and-a-half it’s being built.

The lunch will be virtual by going to the League’s website and on Zoom:

The meeting is open to the public, so please invite friends.

What’s Open (Coffee, CVS), Closed (Everything Else) In Belmont On Thanksgiving

Photo: Thanksgiving (c. 1935) by Doris Lee (1905–1983), Art Institute of Chicago

One of only ten recognized by the federal government, Thanksgiving is both a national and state holiday, so most businesses along with federal, state and town offices are closed shut.

In Belmont, town offices will also be closed on Black Friday, Nov 24. And the Belmont Public Library But there are a few places where you can get away from the hustle and bustle of the kitchen to pick up a coffee or hot chocolate or hit the drug store for whatever reason.

What’s open:

  • Starbucks in Cushing Square (Trapelo and Common) is open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thanksgiving and 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Black Friday.
  • Dunkin’ at Trapelo Road and Beech Street will be operating from 4:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. The location on Church Street in Waverley Square will be open from 4:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The store at 350 Pleasant St. will be open from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • CVS at 264 Trapelo Rd. is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., while the pharmacy is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • CVS in Belmont Center on Leonard Street is operating from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The pharmacy is closed.
  • Star Market in Waverley Square is closed.