Concord Covid creativity comes alive at the Concord Museum!

Behind the Scenes look as Decorators set up for the Concord Museum’s Family Trees Exhibit…

Necessity is the mother of invention and Concord creatives have risen to the challenge in this year’s Family Tree exhibit at the Concord Museum which opened this week.  It turns out Zoom and Facetime have powered even more creativity than ever before as artists, families, friends and Girl Scout troops bring children’s stories to life through holiday tree interpretations that will blow your mind.  But what has been even more inspiring is to see the grit, resilience, creativity and laughter that fused behind the scenes to bring us such holiday joy in the absence of holiday parties and family get togethers.

In a typical year, creative minds would collect to choose a story to interpret and build a tree together over a series of weeks but in fairly normal tempo and in-person construction.  Not this year.  This year Covid has ignited some inspiring innovations that can’t help but bring a smile to your face in awareness of what we can all accomplish together when we put our minds to it.

One  Girl Scout troop used this project to stay connected, as did groups of friends, designing ornaments together over Zoom and having virtual workshop sessions replete with holiday music and bring-your-own snacks.  Parents and college kids, newly working from home, were able to participate in ways that weren’t practically possible and formulated family projects that successfully tugged everybody away from Netflix.  Equally impressive has been the creativity, care and insight that the museum staff has brought to bear to create a Covid-aware viewing experience for all of us when we go to see these miraculous trees.

 

 

Earlier this week, we got an inside glimpse of the decorators setting up their trees. It was magical too see the children’s books come alive as their stories were reflected through the ornaments of each tree. Take a peek at our “90 Seconds Behind the Scenes” of the decorators preparing for opening day of the Exhibit.

In past years, all the decorators would all arrive one morning to decorate their trees together. However, this year, due to the pandemic, a lot of time and thought had to be put into placement of trees, scheduling the decorators and setting up reservations to stay in line with COVID protocol. The staggered slots for decorators to set up the trees allowed each group to be alone in their space for their allotted time. This also gave us a chance to see the different phases. Over the course of two days we were able to walk around the Museum and see the trees in various stages – from decorators lugging in boxes and bags into the Museum, to setting up the actual tree to carefully unwrapping the various ornaments then on to the thoughtful placement of each on to the branches. We look forward to making a reservation and returning to see the Exhibit in it’s entirety and have a chance to linger at each wreath and tree.

 

A change from past years is the amount of space between trees which will allow visitors to feel comfortable as they roam the galleries. Also, plexiglass book stands have been provided with the book opened to a spread that the decorator chose as her inspiration. This will keep it a touch-free zone and safer for visitors. One group found a creative way to display several pages of the book around the base of the tree… See if you can spot this when you visit.

 

During this pandemic, more people than ever are making sourdough starters and baking bread. All of you bakers will get a kick out of the theme of the tree in the Center Hall. Be sure to take extra time to look at the detail of each ornament. One Concord family worked hard to bring the The Bread Pet book to life on the branches of their tree.

 

The adorable children and talented staff of Concord Recreation After School Program and Concord Carousel Preschool found fabulous ways to create a snow globe, complete with faces of the children, modeling their unique face masks. Several other local schools are represented and teachers worked hard to include the children in creating their trees,

 

The reservation system that has been implemented is another safe step the Museum has taken to keep its visitors safe and follow COVID protocols. Be sure to book your reservation soon!

          

Family Trees is on view through January 3, 2021, seven days a week from 10am to 4pm. Timed tickets can be reserved online. (closed 11/26, 12/24, and 12/25)

Visit the Concord Museum this holiday season to see 28 trees and wreaths of all shapes and sizes ornamented with inspiration from children’s books.  Brimming with whimsy and charm, this creative twist on Concord’s renowned literary legacy is sure to brighten spirits and warm hearts of all ages.

 

 

Please enjoy some of the in-progress photos and reserve your spot to come and celebrate the holidays in this historic time.  We thank you in advance for supporting  the Concord Museum, the Staff has worked tirelessly, behind the scenes, to make this happen.

Concord Museum Galleries:
NOW OPEN!
Open Seven Days a Week from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Purchase timed tickets on the Museum’s website.

Tickets are now available for our 25th annual Family Trees: A Celebration of Children’s Literature. To purchase your timed ticket choose the Family Trees Area and select the day would like to visit. Then scroll through the next screens using the gray side bar to select your time slot and types of tickets. As always, Members visit for free! Not a member? Join or renew today

ART for ALL’s Feed the Spirit Fundraiser

Make greeting cards for ART for ALL’s Feed the Spirit fundraiser!

Making, sending and receiving greeting cards; what a great way to keep our spirits up during a pandemic winter! Plus, with the cards we raise funds for the Art Activity Kits for the guests of the local food pantry, and the people of Minute Man Arc.


How to participate:
We are collecting handmade greeting cards with a winter theme, now through December 20th.
Use your own supplies, or pick up free blank cards at the ART for ALL display at the West Concord 5 and 10.
Return finished cards to the same display, or to the ART for ALL bin on the porch of 21 Winthrop Street in West Concord.

Buy handmade cards donated to the fundraiser, and Greeting Card Kits! Cards and kits are on sale at Joy Street Gift Shop in West Concord. thanks to the generosity of Jen McGonigle, the owner of Joy Street, ALL proceeds from the purchase of our cards and kits goes to the Feed the Spirit Fundraiser. Thank you Jen! Here is a how-to video for making the cards from the kits!

Make cards on your own for our fundraiser: Between now and about December 20th, we are looking for winter-themed and holiday cards. Thank You cards are also always in season!

 

What supplies should I use?

  • You can pick up blank greeting cards and a description of the project from the Art for All display at the West Concord Five and Ten. The cards are free, and each one has a label on the back with information about the fundraiser and a place to sign.

  • Look around your house. Anything that can go on a piece of paper and into an envelope is potential art material! Paints, colored pencils, papers, glued on beads and sequins. Lots of stuff

  • Not finding what you need? If you are making cards for our fundraiser, you can come get materials for free. We have lots of blank cards, papers, sequins and fun things to glue down. Sign up to come by the Art Room to pick up supplies. Masks on, of course, and we limit the number in the room. If the times don’t work for you write to margie@villageartroom to arrange a time.

How do we get finished cards to you? You can leave cards in the Art for All display at the West Concord Five and Ten, or drop them off at the front porch of 21 Winthrop Street in West Concord center. There is a plastic bin on the porch with a sign on it saying Art for All. Put your cards in there. Be sure to have them signed, and make sure we have your contact info. We might just send you a thank you card! 🙂

Or, mail cards to Village Art Room, suite #16, 152 Commonwealth Avenue, West Concord, MA 01742

How are the cards used? Some cards will be become thank you cards to people making donations, and others will be sold at stores in West Concord.

More information on the Village Art Room website at this link.

 Art for All is the community sponsored program of the Village Art Room. Our mission is to strengthen the community by building connections through creative projects, for people of all artistic and financial abilities. We believe that the making, sharing and experiencing art improves the lives of individuals, and of our community.

Halloween during a Pandemic

Don’t be spooked – you can still find safe and fun ways to celebrate Halloween this year. Here are some suggestion and guidelines….

TOWN OF CONCORD HALLOWEEN ADVISORY

The Concord Town Manager and Board of Health have received inquiries regarding Halloween events and safety during COVID-19.   In an effort to create a safe holiday, we have taken the following items into consideration:

  • Acknowledge and respond to the recent increase in COVID activity within Concord and surrounding towns;
  • Reduce the risk to all Concord residents;
  • Support efforts to keep our schools open;
  • Discourage gatherings in neighborhoods and out-of-town participation; and
  • Adhere to Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) guidelines

The Board of Health and Town Manager are advising residents to avoid Higher Risk and Moderate Risk activities including traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating.   Lower Risk activities are preferred ways to celebrate while minimizing risk.

The Concord Recreation Department is offering a Lower Risk Halloween event:  A DRIVE THRU HALLOWEEN.  The event will take place at CCHS’s parking lot on Sunday, October 25th from 1:00-3:45 PM.    For more information please see:  http://www.concordrec.com/288/A-Drive-Thru-Halloween.

As a reminder, restrictions are still in place which limit indoor and outdoor activities. Please see the mass.gov website for questions on restrictions.

 

For those who choose to partake in Trick-or-Treating:

Please be aware that Trick-or-Treating needs to be done differently this year to help protect everyone.

  • Wear an appropriate cloth face covering,
  • Social distancing of at least 6’ is required at all times for everyone, unless you live in the same household.
  • Trick-or-Treat as a household group and avoid large groups and indoor gatherings.
  • Provide individually wrapped candy or goodie bags that can be placed outdoors for easy access that allows participants to maintain social distancing.  Place treats on a platter for families to grab and go with minimal contact; avoid communal candy bowls.
  • Stay home if you don’t feel well or may have been exposed to COVID-19 and do not hand out treats.
  • Those who do not wish to participate in Trick-or-Treat are asked to shut off their outdoors lights as an indicator.

CDC Halloween Guidelines

Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses. There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween. If you may have COVID-19 or you may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, you should not participate in in-person Halloween festivities and should not give out candy to trick-or-treaters.

LOWER RISK ACTIVITIES

These lower risk activities can be safe alternatives:

  • Carving or decorating pumpkins with members of your household and displaying them
  • Carving or decorating pumpkins outside, at a safe distance, with neighbors or friends
  • Decorating your house, apartment, or living space
  • Doing a Halloween scavenger hunt where children are given lists of Halloween-themed things to look for while they walk outdoors from house to house admiring Halloween decorations at a distance
  • Having a virtual Halloween costume contest
  • Having a Halloween movie night with people you live with
  • Having a scavenger hunt-style trick-or-treat search with your household members in or around your home rather than going house to house

 

 

MODERATE RISK ACTIVITIES

  • Participating in one-way trick-or-treating where individually wrapped goodie bags are lined up for families to grab and go while continuing to social distance (such as at the end of a driveway or at the edge of a yard)
    • If you are preparing goodie bags, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 second before and after preparing the bags.
  • Having a small group, outdoor, open-air costume parade where people are distanced more than 6 feet apart
  • Attending a costume party held outdoors where protective masks are used and people can remain more than 6 feet apart
    • A costume mask (such as for Halloween) is not a substitute for a cloth mask. A costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose and doesn’t leave gaps around the face.
    • Do not wear a costume mask over a protective cloth mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe. Instead, consider using a Halloween-themed cloth mask.
  • Going to an open-air, one-way, walk-through haunted forest where appropriate mask use is enforced, and people can remain more than 6 feet apart
    • If screaming will likely occur, greater distancing is advised. The greater the distance, the lower the risk of spreading a respiratory virus.
  • Visiting pumpkin patches or orchards where people use hand sanitizer before touching pumpkins or picking apples, wearing masks is encouraged or enforced, and people are able to maintain social distancing

  • Having an outdoor Halloween movie night with local family friends with people spaced at least 6 feet apart
    • If screaming will likely occur, greater distancing is advised. The greater the distance, the lower the risk of spreading a respiratory virus.
    • Lower your risk by following CDC’s recommendations on hosting gatherings or cook-outs.

 

HIGHER RISK ACTIVITIES

Avoid these higher risk activities to help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19:

  • Participating in traditional trick-or-treating where treats are handed to children who go door to door
  • Having trunk-or-treat where treats are handed out from trunks of cars lined up in large parking lots

 

The New York Times At Home section offers these tips on “How to Have a Safe and Still Spooky Halloween”

In some ways, 2020 would make for the perfect Halloween: the holiday falls on a Saturday, and it’s a full moon (specifically, a “blue moon,” an event that occurs only once every couple of years).

But it’s no surprise that Halloween will look very different in 2020. With coronavirus rates rising in some parts of the country and social distancing measures still in place, many people are thinking about their health and that of others while considering how to celebrate.

Here are some Halloween ideas from families across the country to keep the holiday spooky while staying safe, complete with wearing masks, sanitizing often and practicing social distancing.

Door-to-door trick-or-treating this year may instead be table-to-table. In Canonsburg, Pa., Dana Armstrong, 39, and her neighbors are recommending families put tables outdoors, at the end of their driveways or in front of their homes, with candy spread out on top for children to grab as they pass. A similar concept is popping up in Chicago neighborhoods. After discussing it with her husband, Sarah Barr, 40, said she’ll head out — masked up — with her 10-year-old daughter, along with a small group of friends and their parents. Any house where the tables look like subway platforms during rush hour, or where people aren’t wearing masks, “Keep on movin’!” Ms. Barr said.

In Washington, Veronica Jimenez, 45, is putting a twist on trick-or-treating by taking her children on a walk through their neighborhood — and being their candy dispenser.

“For every decorated house we see, I’ll give them some candy,” she said. “That was an easy idea of how I can make them happy, but also keep safe.”

Last Halloween, Ivonne Valdes and her husband went to Disney World with their children, now 5 and 3. This year, Ms. Valdes turned to Pinterest for inspiration on decorating their Miami backyard.

“I’m thinking of setting up a scavenger hunt of little bags with Halloween candy and treats,” Ms. Valdes said. They will try their hands at pumpkin carving, then spend the evening making cupcakes and watching their favorite holiday flicks like “Hotel Transylvania.”

Creativity is buzzing in other Miami homes, too. Elisa Douglass, 44, has turned costumes into a family challenge for her husband and two kids, 10 and 12. “I thought, ‘Let’s make our own costumes,’” said Ms. Douglass, a master sewer, who encouraged the family to collect odds and ends from around the house. Also on the agenda: pizza, baking and 80s movies.

“My kids love being home, so in a sense I got lucky,” she said.

Barring any snow in Minneapolis, Tiffany Tomlin Kurtz, 43, and a small group of neighbors plan to organize an outdoor party, with a glow-in-the-dark candy hunt for the kids, a bonfire for adults and an outdoor projector showing a Halloween flick.

In Atlanta, after their kids wrote a letter making the case for more than a backyard Halloween party, Maggie and Garrett Mock and other friend-parents put their heads together to come up with a “progressive party,” Covid-19 style.

“Each house will give away candy, but also host a little extra activity to make up for the limited stops,” Ms. Mock said. From pizza and piñatas at one stop, and at other stops, backyard dance parties, ghost tales around the bonfire and, of course, an outside projector with scary movies.

Support Concord Restaurants, Cafes & Specialty Food Markets

One of the things we love most about our town is the fabulous array of independent restaurants and specialty food shops. Concord offers such a unique offering and wide variety of places to eat or buy delicious food.

  

  

      

As we head into late fall / winter, we have to remember to find ways to support these businesses so they can survive the pandemic.

 

Stock your pantry, stock your freezer, purchase gift cards, treat yourself or a neighbor to a take out meal, gather items for an outdoor picnic by the firepit.

IMG_5483 

Mass Restaurant Association and SEATED have just announced plans to roll out The “Eat Out to Help Out MA” program will provide Bay State restaurant patrons with a 50 percent rebate on any check from full-service restaurants, for both on and off-premise dining, from Monday to Wednesday each week in November. Customers can reap their rewards by downloading a SEATED app (https://seatedapp.io).

Eat Out to Help Out is an initiative to help the Massachusetts restaurant industry.

It’s a replication of the Eat Out to Help Out initiative in the UK that generated millions of dollars of off-peak guest spend.

50 % rebate on any off-peak check

For the month of November, Seated will provide a 50% rebate on any check from a full-service in Massachusetts for dining experiences
enjoyed from Monday–Wednesday.

How Does a Guest Get Their Rebate?

  • Guests download Seated to discover
    participating restaurants.
  • Guests dine out and pay full
    price in the restaurant.
  • Guests return to Seated to submit their
    receipt and receive their rebate in the form
    of cash or credit at their favorite brand

The restaurants below are members of Massachusetts Restaurant Association:

  • THE COLONIAL INN
  • FIORELLA’S
  • SORRENTO’S

Take a look at all Concord has to offer:

CAFES & BAKERIES

Caffe Nero, Concord Teacakes, Dunkin’ Donuts, Haute Coffee, Nashoba Brook Bakery, Sally Ann’s, Starbucks, Verrill Farm

 

ASIAN

Asian Gourmet, Chang An, Karma, Sushi house

 

 

ITALIAN  & PIZZA

Comella’s, Dinos Farfalle, Fiorellas, New London Pizza, Paparazzi, Rossini’s, Sorrento’s, Walden pizza

   

MEXICAN

Adelita

AMERICAN & FARM to TABLE

80 Thoreau, Club Car Cafe, Helen’s, Liberty at the Colonial Inn, Main Streets Market & Cafe, Merchant’s Row at the Colonial Inn, Rapscallions, Salt Box Kitchen, The 99, Trail’s End, Twin Seafood, Woods Hill Table

 

SPECIALTY FOOD & FOOD MARKETS

The Concord Cheese Shop, Concord Market, Concord Provisions & Country Store, Crosby’s Market, Debra’s Natural Gourmet, Farfalle, Graem, New England Olive Oil, Nine Acre Corner, Priscilla’s Candy, Salt Box Kitchen, Twin Seafood, Verrill Farm

IMG_5482

 

 

ICE CREAM

Bedford Farms, Helen’s, Reasons to be Cheerful

WINE & LIQUOR STORES:

Concord Cheese Shop, Concord Market, Concord Provisions & Country Store, Crosby’s Market, Nine Acre Wines, Vintages Adventures in Wine, Walden Liquors, West Concord Liquor Store

 

 

The New York Times “At Home” section offers these suggestions on How to Support Independent Restaurants:

1. Eat as much takeout as possible.

Set aside a specific day to give yourself a treat and keep a local restaurant alive. Some restaurants are making frozen-food dishes and other pantry items — frozen enchiladas, dumplings, family-style meals — that will keep longer than any given night’s dinner, so be sure to ask even if they don’t advertise them. Many restaurants are also offering takeout drinks and cocktails.

2. Order straight from the restaurant.

While convenient, delivery apps like DoorDash and UberEats take a significant percentage of sales — up to 30 percent — and it is impossible to maintain a successful business model while using them exclusively, said Mrs. White of Everett and Jones. Instead of firing up an app, call your favorite restaurant and put in your order over the phone, or order directly from the restaurant’s website, if possible.

3. Pick up yourself, and pay cash.

If you can walk to the restaurant and pick up the food yourself, do so, and pay with cash. Is there a friend or family member you can help who can’t go out? Pick up a hot meal for them, too. In addition to getting some extra exercise, you’ll save the business the fees — usually about 2 percent of a purchase — charged by credit card companies.

4. Tip well.

A large restaurant may be able to afford servers to cater to people seated outside, but a smaller restaurant might only be able to staff a cook and a front-of-house person to pack and take orders. Many customers are tipping less, or not at all, because they perceive this to be a lower level of service than they are accustomed to when going out, said Alice Liu, who grew up in Manhattan’s Chinatown and helps run Grand Tea Imports, her family’s multigenerational tea and import business. Remember that restaurant employees are working hard to provide you with a dining experience during an unprecedented time, and at a higher risk of exposure to themselves. A healthy tip is a way to show your appreciation.

5. Shop at markets and stores in your community, too.

So much of a neighborhood like Chinatown depends upon foot traffic. You can buy groceries and fresh produce, gifts and kitchenware as well as restaurant meals. Think about other items you might normally buy elsewhere or online, and consider purchasing from the individual small businesses around you.

6. Purchase gift cards.

Ask your restaurant if it offers gift cards or gift certificates. Many businesses now allow online or emailed gift certificates where they might have accepted only paper options in the past. It’s a good way to support a restaurant while giving a welcome pick-you-up to someone else.

7. Ask how you can help.

If you have time and skills to donate, offer them. Community organizations have been helping restaurants build their outdoor dining infrastructure with volunteer programs; consider joining a program like New York’s Assembly for Chinatown. Ask if you can help by setting up GoFundMe donation pages or building simple online presences for these businesses, for whom technology can be an obstacle. “As customers, you can encourage mom-and-pop owners and see if you can help them navigate things online or on social media, especially in Chinatown or older, non-English speaking communities,” Ms. Liu said.

“Technology is one thing that can really help you in this time,” added Mrs. White.

 

 

Must see: Concord Scarecrow Festival on Concord Main Library Lawn

Where can you spot a variety of fun & creative scarecrows made by local organizations and businesses?

Come to a Scarecrow Festival!

On display on the Concord Main Library’s Lawn every day

Sat Oct 17 – Fri Oct 30, 2020

Open Table’s scarecrows are a cheerful welcome to side entrance to Library…

The Louisa May Alcott Orchard House’s Scarecrow looks almost life-like…

Saltbox Farm / Saltbox Kitchen farmer scarecrow reminds us of all the fabulous Farms in Concord and the delicious farm to table options offered at Saltbox Kitchen.

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and no scarecrow festival is complete without a pilgrim

Visit the cute SCAREBEAR that the new Concord Toy Box @ Revolutionary Concord / Albright Art has created. And visit their shop!

Feeling musical? Visit the Concord Conservatory of Music scarecrow (and their website to learn about offerings)

Concord Recreation’s Scarecrow is more smiley than scarey…

And leave it to the Beede Center to come up with clever way to use pool noodles for their scarecrow…

The Barn Cooperative Nursery School has these adorable scarecrow children

The Visitor’s Office has a cute reminder to mask up when visiting town.  

 

The Wild Things Scarecrow on display at the front of the lawn reminds us that “We’ll Kick This”

Bonus: While there, you’ll see an abundance of gorgeous fall foliage….

and also some info about many of the Concord Library’s offerings.

Grab hot cocoa or sandwiches in town and sit in the cafe tables on library lawn while you enjoy the view.

Visit some local farms to get some hay bales and visit this website so you can start making your own scarecrows for your lawn.

Share your photos with us!

 

   

        

VOTE!

Voters in Massachusetts will head to the polls Tuesday, Nov. 3, for the 2020 general election but you can vote in person starting at noon on Saturday, October 17th.

VOTING IN PERSON BEFORE ELECTION DAY

COVID-19 Protocols

  • Please wear a mask!
  • Observe Social Distancing

Early Voting at the Town House

  1. begins on Saturday, October 17th and continues until Friday, October 30
    • 8:30am – 4:30pm on weekdays, from October 19 – 30
    • 12:00pm – 4:00pm on weekends: Oct 17, 18 and Oct. 24 & 25

Absentee Voting in Person

  1. Please call the Town Clerk’s Office to make an appointment
  2. Deadline to apply in person for an absentee ballot is 12pm on November 2

VOTING IN PERSON ON ELECTION DAY

Polls are open from 7:00am until 8:00pm

  • Precinct 1: 22 Monument Square, Town House Hearing Room
  • Precinct 2: 1276 Main Street, Harvey Wheeler Community Center
  • Precinct 3: 1276 Main Street, Harvey Wheeler Community Center
  • Precinct 4: 120 Meriam Road, Ripley School Building
  • Precinct 5: 90 Stow Street, Hunt Gym

Precinct & Ballot Information: https://www.sec.state.ma.us/wheredoivotema/bal/myelectioninfo.aspx

Questions? Contact us! townclerk@concordma.gov | 978-318-3080

November 3, 2020 Presidential Election Reminders

Saturday & Sunday, October 17 & 18

Early voting in person at the Town House: 12pm – 4pm

Monday, October 19 – Friday, October 23

Early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm

Saturday, October 24

Early Voting at the Town House: 12pm – 4pm

Voter reg. deadline – registration session at Town House: 2pm – 4pm / 6pm – 8pm.

Online until 11:59pm: https://www.sec.state.ma.us/ovr/

By mail: must be postmarked by October 24th.

Sunday, October 25

Early voting at the Town House: 12pm – 4pm

Monday, October 26

Early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm

Tuesday, October 27

  • Early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm
  • After 12:00pm, absentee ballots may be hand delivered to anyone admitted to a health facility or self-quarantining

Wednesday, October 28

  • Early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm
  • Vote by Mail/Absentee Voting by Mail application deadline: 5:00pm

Thursday, October 29

Early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm

Friday, October 30

Last Day of early voting at the Town House: 8:30am – 4:30pm

Monday, November 2

12:00pm deadline to apply for an absentee ballot in person

Tuesday, November 3

  • Presidential Election: vote at polling places (see reverse); polls are open from 7:00am until 8:00pm
  • Hand delivered ballots are due to the Town Clerk’s Office by 8:00pm.
    1. DO NOT DELIVER BALLOTS TO THE POLLS
  • All mail in ballots must be postmarked by November 3rd and be received in the Town Clerk’s Office by 5:00pm on November 6th.
  • Overseas mailed ballots must be postmarked by November 3rd and be received in the Town Clerk’s Office by 5:00pm on November 13th.

Voting by mail is safe and easy!

  • Apply for a vote by mail ballot
  • Return your ballot to the Town Clerk’s Office
  • Use our drop box located at the entrance on the left side of the Town House at 22 Monument Square.
  • Use TRACK MY BALLOT: https://www.sec.state.ma.us/wheredoivotema/track/trackmyballot.aspx on the next business day to confirm receipt of your hand delivered ballot (allow more time for mailed ballots).
  • Return your ballot early to avoid delays

In addition to the presidential and congressional races, there are several key races at the state and local level, as well as two ballot questions. Voting will be different this year thanks to rules approved to expand early and mail-in voting in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

The deadline to register to vote is Oct. 24. You can check your voting status on the Secretary of State’s website, where you can also find your polling place.

See guide from Concord Patch

Ballots can be returned by mail, emailed, faxed or returned by hand to the clerk’s office. They can also be returned at the drop boxes in town.

Mail-in ballots need to be postmarked by Nov. 3 and returned to the local election office no later than Nov. 6.

Early Voting

Voters have the option of early, in-person voting. Early voting runs from Oct. 17-30 but dates and times can vary by town and city. You can find the early voting location and times for your town online.

Voting on Election Day

Polls in Massachusetts are open 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day. You can also use the Secretary of State’s website to find your polling place.

Key Races

The following are the key contested races that will be on the ballot:

President/Vice President
Joe Biden/Kamala Harris (Democrat)
Donald Trump/Mike Pence (Republican) – Incumbent

U.S. Senate
Edward Markey (Democrat) – Incumbent
Kevin O’Connor (Republican)
Andre Gray (Green)
Frederick Mayock (independent)

Ballot Questions
Question 1: “Right To Repair” Vehicle Access Requirement Initiative
Yes: A yes vote would require carmakers to expand access to mechanical data for all cars sold in Massachusetts beginning with model year 2022.
No: A no vote leaves the 2013 right-to-repair law unchanged.
Question 2: Ranked-Choice Voting Initiative
Yes: A yes vote favors adopting a system gives voters the option of ranking candidates on their ballot in order of preference, as opposed to selecting just one. And if no candidate gets more than 50 percent of first-choice votes, the candidate with the least first-choice votes is eliminated, and the voters who preferred that candidate have their votes reallocated based on their second choices. Then the ballots are recounted and the process is repeated until one candidate breaks the 50 percent threshold.
No: A no vote keeps the current system in place.

Weekend Day Trip: Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit at Pingree School in Hamilton

Outside allows us to observe social distancing advisories while offering a delightful opportunity for viewers to enjoy a walk among 50 beautiful pieces of art set amidst the 100-acre campus of Pingree School in South Hamilton, Massachusetts.

To keep everyone safe,  all visitors must wear masks, remain six feet apart from other visitors not in their party, and refrain from touching sculptures or signs. The public is invited to view the exhibit during daylight hours on weekends and during holidays when school is not in session (October 12, and November 25–27).

Go here for a free electronic guide and map via the Findful app

 

Pack a picnic and head north…

   

    

 

Be sure to check out this thought provoking sculpture “Humanity Unravelled” by Concord sculptor, Elisa Adams. 

   

 

Set aside extra time to look carefully at this guitar sculpture (below).

 

Look closely – what do you see? Can you find the bike pedals or tweezers? Take turns playing “I Spy” with your family / friends – you will be amazed by what objects are used in this sculpture.

 

A special thank you to Concord resident, Hedi Charde, for sending us a few of her photos from her visit!

   

How many different animal sculptures can you find?

 

 

   

Explore the grounds, including the Pingree Farm at bottom of the hill.

 

Take some time one weekend to see this fresh air, free exhibit – you won’t be disappointed!

 

Weekend Outing Ideas

ROCKPORT, MA

In just one hour you can get to the charming coastal town of Rockport, Massachusetts where you’ll find scenic views, delightful shops and an abundance of fabulous galleries.

Wear comfortable shoes so you can walk along rocks on the jetty or take steps down to the beach.

 

Work up an appetite and then grab a lobster roll or clam chowder, followed by ice cream or candy at various spots in town.

 

Find our inner artist – visit Motif #1 and see why artists call this fish shack “Motif #1″n i, an inspiration for so many artists over the years. Rockport has an abundance of benches located around harbor which will allow you to sit down and sketch the famous shack or just sit admire the beauty of the harbor.

Motif Number 1, located on Bradley Wharf in Rockport, Massachusetts, is a replica of a former fishing shack well known to students of art and art history as “the most often-painted building in America.” Wikipedia

Read the story behind it in New Englnd Today, Travel

                     

 

Read about more things to do and see in Rockport – such as walking tours, the Headlands, Cape Ann Light Station, Bearskin Neck, Dogtown Tours, Babson Word Rocks, fishing charters, Loblolly Cove, Sandy Bay Historical Society & Museum and much more.

 

BOSTON SEAPORT / FAN PIER

     

In the mood for an urban adventure? How about Boston Seaport / Fan Pier area? If you haven’t been there lately, you’ll be in for a wonderful surprise. There is so much to see and do – day or night and no shortage of delicious dining options.

   

Stroll along Harbor Walk which encircles the 21 acres of Fan Pier.

        

Pop into a Museum  – Take your pick – Institute for Contemporary Art (shown below), Boston Children’s Museum. Boston Fire Museum, Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum – to name a few…

   

Grab a bite at a fabulous restaurant / cafe or take it to go and enjoy your meal while sitting on one of the hundreds of places to sit along Harbor Walk.

   

You won’t be disappointed. The views can’t be beat!

Apple Picking Season is here!

Within just 30 minutes from Concord you can find a variety of orchards and all sorts of options for apple picking, cider donuts, farm stands and pumpkin patches.

      

 

Many offer hayrides, mazes, farm animals, pumpkin patches and stores stocked with variety of seasonal merchandise and delicious fresh cider donuts, pies, fruit and cider.

   

Make a day of it – pack a picnic or pick up lunch at some of these spots.

We compiled a list of some PYO spots within a short drive from Concord:

Autumn Hills Orchard, 495 Chicopee Row, Groton

PYO and online shop. There are picnic tables up on the high ridge where you can sit, relax and enjoy the view. Trails and paths circle the farm. Walk, pick fruit, enjoy the view!

   

 

Berlin Orchards, 310 Sawyer Hill Road, Berlin

PYO, farm store & wagon rides Monday-Friday. Gorgeous views, perfect picnic spot. Bonus – you may see farm animals.

 

Carlson Orchards, 115 Oak Hill Road, Harvard

If you visit on a weekend, you’ll have an option to pick up a bite to eat from one of the visiting food trucks.

     

 

Carver Hill Orchard 101 Brookside Road, Stow

A family run orchard  – visit the farm store for apples, cider donuts, mum plants, pumpkins, ice cream, cider & more!

 

Derby Ridge, 438 Great Rd., Stow

Pick your own, farmstore and donuts Friday-Sunday

 

 

Doe Orchard, 327 Ayer Rd., Westford

 

 

Hill Orchard, 4 Hunt Rd. Westford

Open Saturday & Sunday

   

 

Honeypot Hill Orchard, 138 Sudbury Rd, Stow

Mazes, Hayrides, Pick our Own, Farm Animals

 

Nagog Hill Farm, 74 Nagog Hill Rd., Littleton, 978-486-3835

   

 

Schartner Farm, 279 W. Berlin Rd., Bolton

Open weekends, pyo apples and corn maze, Lion Club makes fresh cider donuts

 

Shelburne Farm, 106 West Acton Road

Warm Cider Donuts made fresh all day every day!
Visit the farm animals, tractor playground, and story walk, PYO apples & pumpkins.

 

Westward Orchards, 178 Mass Ave, Harvard

Pick your own apples & pumpkins. Farmstore – porch & curbside pick-up only now.

Gather up your family & friends, you’ll need some extra hands to carry all those delicious apples you’ll pick!

And start planning the apple pie, apple crumble, apple sauce, caramel apples… you plan to make.

Happy Apple Picking!

 

Pandemic: Changes & new offerings we have embraced and liked

We all want the Pandemic to come to an end… But what about things that have come about or were started due to the Pandemic that we don’t want to end? Here are some thoughts…

One Concord resident wrote this: “Overall, I think people are much more friendly and kind, here and elsewhere. Seems the ‘We are all in this together’ idea is bringing out best in so many.”

Living Concord followers sent us some of their favorite things:

Curbside pick-up at Concord Library

Messages on staircase leading to Nesting shop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Outdoor classrooms

Eating Lunch outside at schools

Birthday Parades

 

Small, social distance concerts at your home. Some local musicians can come to your home to perform for you and small group.

Mobile ordering @ Haute Coffee

Curbside pick-up options at so many shops & restaurants

 

Al fresco dining, more outdoor seating options

Seeing many more people walking & biking

Library lawn cafe tables and chairs set up for safe social distance small gatherings

Free parking in town

Easier commutes (b/c less traffic) or no commute

No business travel

Graduation Parades & CCHS Administration stopping by each Graduate’s home in the Graduation Celebration School Bus

Drive-in movies at CCHS, from Concord Recreation

Concord Ag Week (not just Ag Day)

Less activities has allowed for more family dinners, more free time, more game nights

Zoom calls with family & friends

Concord-Carlisle Community Chest Driveway Project

Celebratory take out dinner options offered by local businesses

Chalk messages & more messages of gratitude and kindness around town

Playing games like Kahoot or Risk with friends and family

Being in your pajamas longer and having more leisurely mornings

All the new library offerings

Special take-out dinner offerings / “celebration dinners” from local restaurants

Sidewalk sales / sidewalk displays

Outdoor town meeting (with no presentations)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Umbrella’s productions you can watch via Zoom

Summer Quest

Concord Together, Concord Solstice and Fall In Love with Concord

Paperless menus  – just scan QR code with your phone.

All the new Umbrella offerings

More options to sit around town

Go Out Doors along the Rail Trail

People seem less in a hurry, kinder.

These are just a few of the good things that we have learned, started and liked during this trying time. Thank you to all of you who have worked so hard to make these things happen.