The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, March 23, 2007

Living in paranoid times

To the Editor:

One evening this week I was walking my elderly dog on the plaza, enjoying the mild temperatures that sometimes tease us in March. I walk there often in the evenings; the plaza is one of the only lit areas in our small town, and the stairs offer a worthwhile, though not too strenuous, workout for our arthritic dog. As I walked, I saw children skateboarding on the plaza, a father with children, and others savoring the pleasant evening air.

When my dog and I got into my car to leave, I was approached by the Carlisle Police who had received a phone call alerting them to the presence of a "suspicious person on the plaza." After being questioned on the spot and producing my automobile registration, I was allowed to leave.

I know that we live in a difficult time. Child predators make front page news, and school doors must be locked against the very real violence that has spilled blood in some of our nation's schools. As a father of two daughters, I know that we must all be vigilant in order to protect our children. Certainly, I am not blaming the Carlisle Police who were correct to follow up on a telephone call from a concerned person reporting a strange man walking on the plaza.

However, I'm sorry that our paranoia has become so intense that neighbors suspect neighbors, and the police get called in to question a resident who happens to be on the plaza in the evening. I've lived in Carlisle for 24 years, and I'm sorry that we now live in a time when an innocent walk with an elderly dog on a mild March evening raises suspicion.

Ed Connors
Ember Lane

Honor Roll should be printed

To the Editor:

The Honor Roll is not a competition; it is an acknowledgement of achievement; anyone who makes the grade is on the Honor Roll. Like so many things, a position on the Honor Roll is earned. Students who are athletically gifted are given recognition at the event in which they excel. Students who work at their art are rewarded by the hard-earned applause of an audience or the honor of displaying their work. Why are students who work hard in academics denied their recognition?Should we no longer cheer excellence on the court or the field? Should we withhold applause at a concert or play? We recognize achievement and the fruits of hard work in every aspect of life, both in and out of school. Taking away recognition for kids who excel in academics is unfortunate; we should celebrate every achievement.

Frank P. de Alderete
Concord Street

Ryder running for School Committee

To the Editor:

I would like to announce that I am a candidate for one of the two open positions on the School Committee. I have given this decision a great deal of thought and am prepared, if elected, to be an active, involved and contributing member of the committee.

My husband and I have two children, a seventh and fourth grader at the Carlisle Public School. I have spent the last eight years volunteering at the school, serving as a member of the Carlisle School Association Board, assisting in the classrooms, volunteering at the Sixth-Grade Spaghetti Supper, the seventh-grade play and in other volunteer roles. Through my work at the school, I have been privileged to work with many dedicated parents, teachers and school administrators. I have the utmost respect for our teachers and the work they do to prepare our children for their futures. I also understand the need to balance the wishes of those who love and support our children in the public school setting with fiscal responsibility.

I am currently serving as a Trustee for the Gleason Library, an elected position that expires in 2009. In checking with the State Board of Ethics, there is no conflict with my serving on both committees. I am confident that I can continue to execute my duties as Library Trustee and, if elected, serve as an active member of the School Committee.

If elected to School Committee, I would work to communicate positively and effectively, be responsive to the needs and concerns of the community and would consider carefully all decisions that impact the character and direction of our school.

Dale Ryder
Lowell Street

Scholarship Fund success

To the Editor:

On Sunday, March 18, the Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund (CCSF) held its annual phonathon to raise money for current scholarships and to increase its endowment. Approximately 100 members of the Concord-Carlisle High School National Honor Society called over 2000 families and received pledges of in excess of $35,000!

On behalf of the trustees of the CCSF, I would like to thank the following people and institutions: the Fenn School for donating their facilities (Connolly Hall, telephones, and telephone lines); the leaders and members of the National Honor Society who gave up most of Sunday to work on behalf of the CCSF; faculty members Dave Prifti and Bob Furey for their excellent organizational work before the phonathon; residents of Carlisle, Concord and elsewhere who graciously welcomed phone calls from "Unknown Caller" and who either made a pledge, sought more information, or politely refused; and the CCSF trustees who constantly work hard to make all the fine work of the fund a reality.

The CCSF is a scholarship fund that provides need-based assistance to students who are pursuing post-secondary school education. It has been in operation for over 40 years and has assisted over 1000 students. While our resources have grown through our efforts, we currently meet between 10 to 15 percent of the unmet need of such students. Please visit our website,, for more information.

Kenneth D. Anderson, Chair
Concord Carlisle Scholarship Fund

License those dogs now

To the Editor:

According to the provisions of Chapter 140, Section 137 of the Massachusetts General Laws and Article 13 of the General Bylaws of the Town of Carlisle, all dogs living in Carlisle must be registered with the Town Clerk each year. Any dog registrations made after March 31 will incur a $20 late fee. This late fee does not apply to the 2007 registration of dogs brought into Carlisle after March 31, 2007.

There will be a Rabies Clinic held at Town Hall on Saturday, March 24 between 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. for the dogs of Carlisle residents. There are still several hundred dogs not registered for 2007 and we look forward to having these dogs licensed by March 31, 2007.

Please contact the Town Clerk's Office by telephone at 978-369-6155 or by e-mail at with any questions regarding dog licenses.

Thanks very much for your cooperation.

Charlene M. Hinton
Town Clerk

Amusing crossing guard

To the Editor:

I have been the crossing guard near the town library and as such I have been able to share waves of hello with the drivers passing by. I think people saying hello to each other is a way of demonstrating that we are not invisible but that we recognize each other's existence. I also have been impressed by the demonstrated compassion and caring of both adults and children. On cold days both adults and children have offered to buy me a hot drink and something to eat. A young man insisted on giving me a doughnut and other children would often thank me and wish me well. One particular event stands out in my mind. During a cold week in February I had missed a number of days at the beginning of the week because of other commitments. On a day in the latter part of the week I was back at the crosswalk, feeling very cold and having my usual concern that I may not be able to prevent some arrogant, self-absorbed driver from hitting someone in the crosswalk. While wondering what madness made me volunteer to do this job, I saw a young lady enter the crosswalk. She approached me, said she had missed me and gave me a hug! I cannot adequately express my feelings or how good she made me feel but I certainly didn't feel as cold as I did before that hug.It occurred to me that she and others must be a reflection of their parents and that they are very loving families. I relate this tale to you so that you too can feel pride in yourselves and more so in your children.

Thomas Dunkers
East Street

Thanks for seventh-grade play support

To The Editor:

We would like to thank all the dedicated and hard-working people who helped to make this year's seventh-grade play a huge success! We would like to thank our seventh graders who worked so hard over the last eight weeks to bring their characters to life. We could not have produced this play without the energy, creativity and commitment of the parents who built our fabulous sets, sewed our spectacular costumes, found our creative and fun props, did make-up for 96 kids; and, who served as choreographers, chaperones, back stage, photographers, lighting and sound support; who ordered T-shirts, flowers and worked on publicity and tickets. Thank you to the parents who planned and coordinated the wonderful cast party after the final show. Many thanks to the sixth grade parents for supplying delicious treats at intermission at each performance. Our thanks to Robin and Larry Bearfield for agreeing to sell the tickets at Ferns.

We would like to also thank Paul Graseck and Patrice Hurley, David Flannery and his team, Megan Fitzharris and Deana Saada, the seventh grade teachers and aides, Sandy Kelly and Kathy Horan, Rachel Levy and Courtney Graham, all supportive and committed members of the school community who made sacrifices to ensure we had the space and time to practice.

And finally, we thank you, the community, for coming to support the seventh grade play. The seventh graders loved the enthusiasm from the audience that inspired them to be the best they could be.

Our best wishes to the sixth grade parents who are already beginning to think about the production next year.

Nicole Bloomfield
Seema Peterson
Dale Ryder
Holly Salemy
Randi Siu

Meet the "local color" at the Highland School Open Studios

To the Editor:

Tucked away quietly on the Carlisle School campus on School Street sits the original Highland School Building. Built in 1908, the school's former classrooms are now home to a diverse group of 11 artists from the Emerson Umbrella for the Arts. In the present Highland Studios one can find the working spaces of artists (several from Carlisle) talented in watercolor, oil painting, printmaking, children's book illustration, botanical arts, Chinese brush painting, silk painting, fiber arts and stained glass. On Saturday, March 31, and Sunday, April 1, from noon to 5 p.m., the residents of Carlisle are invited to attend the Open Studios at the Highland School. Open Studios happen just once a year, and provide an opportunity for the Carlisle community to tour the studios and meet and talk with the resident artists. We hope you will join us.

Lonnie Harvey
Rodgers Road

2007 The Carlisle Mosquito