Framingham Blog Posts
Mayor Yvonne M. Spicer
Congratulations to Yvonne M. Spicer on being the first Mayor of Framingham.
Framingham will be the first town to be transformed into a city in the 21st Century. The last city in Massachusetts to make the transformation was the town of Garder in 1923. (93 years ago!)
Yvonne M. Spicer will officially take office on January 1, 2018. (53 Days from now) That’s when the Town of Framingham will be officially known as the City of Framingham.
Election Day Voter Turnout
- Yvonne M. Spicer - 9,128 (W)
- John A. Stefanini - 6,455
Total Voters: 15,583
- Yvonne M. Spicer - 5,967 (W)
- John A. Stefanini - 3,184
Total Voters: 10,994 voters
Interesting look at both candidates social media profiles on Election day. This is what their Twitter account looks like:
Evidentially Framingham voters don't use Twitter to follow their candidates.
Framingham Mayor Election
There are two remaining candidates in the running for to be the first Mayor of Framingham:
Framingham voters should check out the websites of the two candidates to learn more about their plan as the first town mayor.
Do you know?
Test your knowledge:
- Which candidate has an action plan for the first 100 days?
- Who will implement a six-month moratorium on new apartments?
- Which candidate will create a Framingham Planning and Development Agency?
- Which one will create a 311 Hotline to the Mayor’s office?
Endorements are Coming in
While Spicer did very well in the primary in September, John Stefanini has done a lot of campaigning in the last few weeks. In the process, he has picked up some key endorsements.
Yvonne Spicer Endorements
- Teri Banerjee Charter Commissioner, Town Moderator
- Adam Blumer, Charter Clerk
- Framingham Teachers Association
- Jordan Ramsay Framingham High Class of 2017 President
- Environmental League of Massachusetts Action Fund
- Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus
John Stefanini, Endorements
- The Central Massachusetts AFL-CIO
- The Framingham-Newton Building Trades Council
- Roofers & Waterproofers Union Local No. 33
- Iron Workers Local 7
- Carpenters Local Union 26
- Framingham Police Superior Officers
- Mark S. Tilden. Former Candidate for Mayor of Framingham
Not Over on Election Day
Framingham residents that are concern about the traffic conditions around town can make a difference even if their candidate doesn't win on November 7th. One of the responsibilities of the new mayor will be to appointment a new Traffic Commission.
The new commission will require four town residents appointed by the town council.
Town Charter describing the new commission:
(a) Establishment, Scope. Until such time as provided otherwise by paragraph (a) of section 1 of this Article, there shall be a traffic commission which shall consist of the police chief, the fire chief, the director of public works, the superindentant of schools, or each of their designees, and four residents: one from the business community, one from the downtown area (defined as the area within a one mile radius of the intersection of Routes 126 and 135), and two residents at-large. All resident members shall be appointed by the council, but shall not be members of the council. Such appointed members shall serve for 3 year terms.
Election Day in a few days
I believe this will be a much closer election than the primary. I still haven't decided on who I'll vote for, and it will probably be a game day decsion.
John Swift Dwelling House
Some Framingham residents may not know that there is a monument on the corner of Swift and Maple Street. The monument marks the spot of Reverend John Swift - one of Framingham first residences.
This is a monument to John Swift Dwelling House.
Six things I learned about the John Swift Dwelling
- Reverend John Swift came to the town of Framingham shortly after it was formed in 1701. He came from Milton Massachusetts to be Framingham's first minister. His church was located at Church Hill Cemetery.
- He was paid 60£ a year and give 100£ and 35 cords of wood to build his house.
- His original property was 140 acres for farming use. Today this would cover much of Framingham State University to the Sudbury River.
- Reverend John Swift died in 1745 and was buried near where he preached in Church Hill Cemetery. Over the years his grave marker became cracked and broken and replaced by the town in the early 1880’s. The original headstone is kept at the historical society.
- The town first official road was connecting the meetinghouse to the minister's house. This would be present-day Maple Street and Salem End Road.
- The monument address is 129 Maple Street, Framingham Massachusetts. This is a small plot of land (0.08 Acres) now owned by the Framingham Historical & Natural Society. It was last sold to the Framingham Historical Society on October 14, 1925.
- The monument was place where he lived in the 1800s. A replacement monument was placed on June 17, 1911, by the Framingham Historical Society (now the Framingham History Center.) It was replaced again in 2016 by the Framingham Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
- When the new monument was placed in 2016, the land value jumped from $1,000 to $150,000. (There’s no indication on why the value of the land had a 150% increase.)
The Tablet says:
This Tablet Marks the Spot of Which Stood the Dwelling House of The Rev D John Swift Fist Minister of Framingham Born in Milton, Mass Mar 14, 1675, Graduated From Harvard College 1697 Ordained at Framingham Oct 8, 1701, Died April 24, 1745, in the FORTY Fourth Year of His Ministry in Framingham JAM Tandem in Domino Requievit Places by the Framingham Historical and Natural History Society June 17, 1911 Restored by the Framingham Chapter DAR 2016
The phrase, "JAM Tandem in Domino Requievit" is Latin for "At length in the Lord."
Finding the Monument
The Monument is located on Swift Road, in Framingham Massachusetts. You can see the monument as you drive slowly down Maple Street.
One more Thing…
Swift Road is named after Reverend John Swift. Seems obvious now, but most people wouldn’t know it when driving past it on Maple Street.
In the 1990s there were 8 women who partition the state to be free from murder charges because of spousal abuse. These women would eventually become known as the "Framingham Eight." They were free because of long-term abuse.
The publicity around these women brought a light of spousal abuse - in particular, who were the real victims.
They were called "Framingham Eight" because they were all held in the women's prison in Framingham.
Framingham 8 : the women who fought back
Four members of the Framingham 8 were featured in the "Framingham 8: the women who fought back" documentary.
Here's a list of the Framingham 8:
|Eugenia Moore||life sentence for second-degree murder in the 1985 stabbing of her former boyfriend||Was commuted in May 1993|
|Meekah R. Scott||8- to 12-year prison sentence for killing her boyfriend July 1993|
|Patricia Allen||sentence of eight to 15 years in prison||Sentence was commuted|
|Lisa Becker Grimshaw||convicted of manslaughter in 1989 and sentenced to 15 to 20 years in prison for luring her husband, Thomas Grimshaw, to his death at the hands of two of her friends who fatally bludgeoned him with a baseball bat.||Given early parole in 1993|
|Elaine Hyde||Convicted for murdering her husband in 1985 and sentenced to life||Release on parole in 1994 after serving 6 years|
|Shannon Booker||Was serving an 8 to 15-year sentence for the 1989 shooting of her abusive boyfriend||Parole in 1994|
|Debra Reid||Stabbed her partner to death on Aug. 12, 1989 and Served 9 to 14 years for manslaughter||Denied Parole in 1994|
|Patricia Hennessey||Serving an 18 to 20-year sentence for manslaughter for shooting her ex-husband on July 15, 1988|
Three Returned to Prison
In July 1997, Framingham Eight member Patricia Allen was sent back to prison for violating parole after being arrested on a charge of assault with a deadly weapon.
In 1998, Lisa Becker Grimshaw was stopped by Leominster with her headlights off. She failed field sobriety tests, he said.
In 1998, Shannon Booker was charged with stealing a wallet from a woman's pocketbook.
Framingham Sister Cities
The Sister Cities International is the resource to facilitate relationships between international cities. They make Sister Cities a productive relationship for both entities.
Framingham has only one city listed as a Sister City, whereas the town officially recognize two locations as Sister Cities:
- Lomonosov, Saint Petersburg - A municipal town in Petrodvortsovy District of the federal city of Saint Petersburg, Russia
- Governador Valadares, Minas Gerais - A Brazilian municipality in the state of Minas Gerais.
Some information about Lomonosov
Lomonosov, Saint Petersburg became Framingham first Sister City officially on July 27, 1992.
How it came about: The mayor of Lomonosov was looking for a Western city to build better relations. Irving August was on a business trip to Lomonosov and met the mayor. Irving came back to Framingham and convinced the town selectmen to make Lomonosov a Sister City.
The relationship is for pure knowledge for the children of Lomonosov and Framingham to learn about each other.
A committee on Sister City relation was created in Framingham. The committee is called FLAME - Framingham Lomonosov Association for Metropolitan Exchange.
A year after the relationship was created 13 citizens from Lomonosov came to Framingham for a visit.
There has been very little information about the cultural exchanges between the two locals since 2004.
Irving August died June 12, 2006.
Distance from Framingham to Lomonosov, Saint Petersburg
Straight line or air distance: 6595.01 km, 4097.95 miles, 3558.66 nautical miles. Estimated Driving Distance: 7584.26 km to 8243.76 km
Some information about Governador Valdares
Ties to Governador Valdares, Minas Gerais was officially formed in October 2003.
The sister city request was made by Joao Paulo Freitas and his wife Vera Dias Freitas.
According to some estimates there are about 1,000 Brazilian immigrants from Valadares in Framingham.
The relationship goal was to teach Framingham residents about Brazilian music, food, language and culture.
In July 2004, a group of Framingham residents visited Governador Valdares, Minas Gerais. They used the trip to learn about Governador Valdares and stayed with host families.
The newspaper in Valadares often feature Framingham news.
Joao Paulo Freitas is currently a realtor at Re/Max One Call Realty.
Distance from Framingham to Governador Valdares
Straight line or air distance: 7439.35 km, 4622.6 miles, 4014.27 nautical miles. Estimated Driving Distance: 8555.25 km to 9299.19 km
Framingham Mayor Primary Race
Last week Framingham residents went to the polls to vote for the town’s first Mayor. Yvonne Spicer was the clear winner with getting more votes than all the other candidates combined:
More people voted for Yvonne Spicer than for the change for Framingham to be a City. (5,684 people voted to transform the town to be a city.)
Number of Register Voters vs Turn out
Last November there were 39,910 registered voters, in September there were 39,996. Which mean 86 people signed up since the Presidential election. Not a huge change, but not bad for a primary election.
- 27.52% of the registered voters turned up in the primary. (11,006 voted in the Primary Election)
- 75% of the registered voters turned up in the November Elections (30,028 voted in the General Election)
- 43% of the registered voters turned up in the Presidential primary. (17,300 voted in the Primary Election)
The General Election had a lot of national coverage so it was expected to have a higher turnout.
If you're at the end of your lease and don't want to trade it in at the dealer, there’s a couple of options Massachusett residents have, the one nearest Framingham is ADESA.
What is ADESA
ADESA provides customers a whole car auction solution. We serve two main client types: institutional customers and dealers.
The dealers who consign and purchase vehicles at ADESA auctions are licensed franchises and independent wholesale dealers. Dealer consignment vehicles include over-aged dealer inventory and unwanted dealer trade-ins.
Six things to Know about ADESA
- Building was once housed by General Motors
- Michael Dukakis purchased a car that was manufactured here.
- Public is not allowed to purchase auction cars. You can watch the auction from the lobby window. (It's neat to see the various cars that come in the lot.)
- Pictures are not allowed on the property. If you want that last picture with your lease car you will have to do it before you arrive.
- There is very limited parking. You need to park the car and then walk into the building to do the car transfer. Make sure to have all the paperwork with you.
- There is no trash bin at the drop-off location, make sure you clean out the car before arriving. Don't forget to look under the mats and sun visors.
From Downtown Framingham, Take a right onto Hollis St, then the next right on Irving Street. Stay on Irving Street, it becomes Loring Drive. You will know when you get near the facility when you start seeing a lot of cars parked on your right.
Street Address: 63 Western Avenue, Framingham, MA 01702
CSA Shares at Hanson Farm
Several Framingham farms have doing CSA (Community Support Agriculture) shares. Framingham residents may have seen lawn signs promoting the CSA Shares.
Framingham's Hanson Farms is one of the Farms that offers CSA Shares.
How CSA Farm Shares Work
The program allows local farmers to get cash up front to help cover the cost of operating expenses. In return, the investor will get a weekly share of fresh locally grown produce from early June to late October.
The amount of produce received every week is enough to feed a family of four. The share does vary weekly depending on what's available to harvest and the current weather conditions.
Some of the items require the Investor to pick their own - a fun activity for the kids!
Plan Duration and Cost
The standard CSA program last for 20 Weeks and cost $650 (2017 figures). That comes to $32.50 a week.
For smaller families, there is an alternate share program where you get a share every other week. So you only get 10 pickups.
The alternative plan cost $350, which comes to $35 a week.
Hanson Farms has an interesting cost saving summary PDF of how the program is a win-win for everyone. In the PDF, you can see how the Investor was able to save a lot of money over the grocery store prices. In addition, the PDF shows the various type food that might be available every week.
Supporting Local Farms
Using the CSA program is a great way to support local farms. While you may get some produce cheaper at the local supermarket. Supporting local farms via CSA helps local farmers grow excellent crop.
Framingham 2017 Mayor Election
The Town of Framingham will have it's first Mayor election on September 26, 2017. There are 6 candidates that are meet the qualifications to be the first Mayor of the city of Framingham. The top two winners in the September primary will face off for the November election.
Here's a list of the candidates and a link to their official websites:
- Josh Horrigan - "We, as a people, Have decided to Change. Now let's commit to it."
- John Stefanini - "We need to bring government to people, rather than people to government."
- Dhruba Sen - "My vision is to make Framingham one of the top 5 Smart Cities of the world."
- Mark Tilden - "There's no reason a major part of the marathon route which appears on the national stage each year shouldn't stand out as a bustling hub of our growing city. "
- Yvonne Spicer - "I'm running for Mayor to build our new city government in a way that is open and accessible to everyone."
- Ben Neves-Grigg - "Ben's vision is to move the City of Framingham forward as the most desirable city in the Commonwealth."
- Priscila Sousa - "will govern to provide a voice for those who have become disenfranchised by the status quo."
Callahan State Park
Framingham's Callahan State Park is a public recreation area covering 958 acres. People use the park for hiking, Mountain Biking, Fishing, horseback riding and walking. There is a pond where dogs can play in a beach like area.
The park has many trials with various main entrances:
- North Entrance - Good place to start on the Hiking trails. Lots of available parking.
- Edman's Road Entrance - Nice lot
- South Entrance - Primary Dog entrance. Enjoy the pond and meet other dog owners. Watch out for Golfers across the street when parking!
This is a nice park where there is a combination of open fields and woods. There's all sorts of fun trails to explore.
Not only is this a fun place to go for a walk, but its a fun place to bring your camera and take pictures - especially in early October.
You don't need a dog to visit the park - as there are lots of trails to explore. During a recent visit we encountered several families out for a nice Labor Day walk.
Ten things I Learned About Callahan State Park
- Officially Became a State Park in 1970
- Named after Raymond J, Callahan, an editor of the Framingham News. The park was named after him shortly after he died in 1969.
- Was a farm land since 1699 and 425-arces was turned over to the state as park land in 1969. The state paid $322,500 for the land. The state was buying lots of open space and some people didn't think it was a good use of the state's money.
- The park now encompasses 958-arces. (I wasn't able to find out specifically when the park expanded in size.)
- When the park first opened, there were personal aircraft shows near the Millwood entrance. Over a 1,000 people showed up. (Where did they park?)
- Dog owners should be careful about having their dogs swim or drink at the pond off Millwood Street. There are bacteria in the water since it is still water. Probably not a good idea to have puppies play in the water.
- One of the few places in the MetroWest where you can take dogs off the leach. Make sure to read the park signs, this is not a 100% leach free area and park rangers have been known to enforce the rules. Make sure you are in control of your dog at all times.
- Learn about the trails before you go. There are trail maps available if you need it.
- There is only 30 parking spaces on the Millwood Ave parking lot. This tends to fill up quickly on Weekends because its very close to the leach free area and pond. Cars will line the streets near the parking lot entrance.
- If you plan to visit the park with your dog frequently, consider joining the Callahan Dog Owners Group. It's a group that is working to make Callahan State Park the best multi-use park in Massachusetts.
Official Street Address
The park offical street address is 1048 Edmands Rd, Framingham, MA 01701. If you are bringing a dog visit the Millwood entrance as you'll see other dogs enjoying the open field.