Friday, July 18, 2008
Anonymous complaint lamented
To the Editor:
Thank you for your reporting on the expansion plans for Ferns Country Store (“BOH gives Ferns preliminary approval for expansion without cafe” - 7/4/08). News Editor Betsy Fell was able to take our complex issues, condense them and report them in understandable, bite-sized pieces.
However, we would like to clarify the points surrounding the need for a public bathroom. Our state’s plumbing code is somewhat arcane and at odds with other agency codes. That was the reason that we sought an initial interpretation from our local Plumbing and Gas Inspector Kenneth Rich. Our April 25, 2007 letter formally requested a determination that our proposed remodeling would not require the provision of a public bathroom. The letter included copies of our preliminary plans along with detailed information. A subsequent determination by Mr. Rich was received on May 23, 2007 stating that a public bathroom in our future plans would not be required.
The State Plumbing Board then received an anonymous complaint from a local resident about the decision. On September 27, 2007, a meeting was held with our local and state inspectors. No new plans were submitted at that meeting. Mr. Rich then reversed his prior decision citing erroneous information including his determination based on a section of the code that we would have seating in excess of 2,000 people. We claimed foul. Our town’s new Plumbing and Gas Inspector, James Powderly, reexamined the issue and has also determined that we will, in fact, need to install a public bathroom. Even though there are establishments in neighboring towns that don’t have bathrooms, we understand his determination based on other codes. We don’t plan to appeal the decision to the state board.
One of the most unfortunate parts of all of this was that rather than coming to talk directly with us, a local resident chose instead to register an anonymous complaint with the state authorities.
Larry Bearfield, proprietor
Ferns Country Store
Return OHD to the Fourth
To the Editor:
In 1967, I co-chaired the Old Home Day Committee (OHDC) which revived the custom of a Fourth of July Old Home Day in Carlisle. Our thinking was that it would help promote a local celebration, so that fewer cars would be on the road.
It was a disappointment to some of us this year that Old Home Day was planned for almost a week before the Fourth. The actual holiday tends to lose significance when not observed at the traditional time. The original purpose, too, was lost this year by making some look for places to go out-of-town to celebrate the Fourth. In 2008 many of us welcome the opportunity to travel less and celebrate at home.
Our faithful OHDC set up the awning on the common for the Carlisle Cats Band, as was the custom. Al Rovin agreed to direct the band for Old Home Day, after Walt Woodward’s death in 2004. He contacted many Carlisle musicians, but few responded, so there was no band on the Green for the first time since 1967.
I hope next year’s committee will return the Old Home Day celebration to the Fourth of July weekend, and that the younger generation musicians will participate.
Online magazine needs submissions
To the Editor:
Please encourage your 5th- to 8th-grade kids to submit their artwork and original stories to TOGAzine, Gleason Library’s new online magazine. At the end of the summer, an actual magazine will be printed and distributed, so now is a great chance to show off your talent! We are accepting any and all forms of 2-D art, creative writing, poetry and comics. Submissions can be dropped off at the library or emailed as an attachment to email@example.com. Check out gleasonlibrary.org or email me with questions.
Center Park celebrates first birthday
To the Editor:
Nearly two hundred people enjoyed ice cream provided by Kimball Farm and cake from the Vicki Lee Bakery, Belmont, as a feature of Old Home Day, and Kerry Kissinger with trombone accompaniment led the singing of Happy Birthday.
A highlight of the event was an announcement that www.carlisle.org/centerpark/index.htm leads to a new six-minute video describing the park’s history. The first frame shows the 1974 “mess” when the town bought this .6 of an acre, followed by photos from the fall of 2005 to the present, contributed by Lois d’Annunzio, Molly McPhee Ho, Paul Saraceno, Julie Turner and Maria von Brincken.
Displays showed before pictures of the park, original drawings, and the surveyor’s map. Another display provided an accounting of funds:
Interest income $990.67
6/24/08 balance $16.02
Birthday gifts toward the completed irrigation totaled $114, thus only $1686 outstanding to Green Lawn.
The deer gobbled all the leaves and berries on five holly bushes, tasted the Seawright daylilies, and finished with selected hemlock branches. Looking ahead, anticipated expenses include netting for the holly, grass seed, some replacement plantings and spring bulbs. Without a big campaign, we are hoping for $5,000 in tax-deductible presents. There is a naming opportunity for one teak bench.
At one year, the whole park is remarkably more attractive and restful than we ever imagined. Rather than enjoying just the drive-by, people are beginning to detour and visit the park area beyond the fence. The accessible entrance on the right invites strollers, wheelchairs, walkers and other devices to assist walking over the lawn. It is heartwarming to see the increased use of this little park.
At Old Home Day, Saturday, June 27, 2009, the second birthday will be celebrated. Let’s all plan to meet at the Park!
In the meantime, may you consider your present for 2008 and enjoy Center Park during all seasons. Daylilies, astilbe, geraniums, sedum, heurchera, blueberries, rhododendron, lilac, hydrangea, weiglea, daisies, blue oak grass and many other visual treats await you now.
Box 55, Carlisle Center Park Project
© 2008 The