News from the Town of Needham
Good morning, Needham!
Next Tuesday is the Town’s Annual Election. Due to the completion of the 2020 Federal Census, all Town Meeting Members must run for election this year. In addition, voters will have the chance to elect candidates for several Town-wide offices. You can see the full ballot on the Town Clerk’s website.
Looking for information on the candidates? Check out the League of Women Voters of Needham’s online Gateway to the Election resource guide.
Wondering where your polling location is? You can find that on the Town Clerk’s website.
Next week will also herald the return of Outdoor Dining in Needham. Because of the planned Town Common renovation project, slated to begin in the coming weeks, the outdoor dining tent and picnic tables will be moved to Greene’s Field for the season. Parklets will be installed adjacent to the field for extra dining space. In addition, Public Works staff will be working with local restaurants to re-install their jersey barriers to provide outdoor dining options for the public. Outdoor dining is also permitted in Needham Heights and on Eaton Plaza. Please remember, any alcoholic beverages consumed in these designated outdoor dining spaces must be purchased with food from a local restaurant. The tent, jersey barriers and parklets are expected to be set up the weekend of April 16th.
Needham Public Health is offering COVID-19 booster vaccines to those in need. Please note, at this time, Needham Public Health is currently only offering the Pfizer vaccine. You can register for a clinic here.
Refreshed Town of Needham Website, Free Mobile App Coming Next Week
The Town of Needham will launch its redesigned website next week, providing a more modern, accessible and user-friendly source of information for residents and visitors. The website is not expected to be inaccessible for any period during the transition, which will take place mid-day Thursday, April 14th. If you do have trouble accessing the site that day, please be patient and check back later in the day.
Along with the refreshed website, the Town is launching a new free mobile app to give the community easier access to Town information on the go. The app, called Town of Needham, MA can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Thank to you the community for your input and ideas as we have worked to provide a better source of online information for Needham.
Needham Park and Recreation Seeking April Vacation Workers, Volunteers
Needham Park and Recreation is seeking individuals to work during April School Vacation. Park and Rec’s April Vacation Program gives kids a chance to engage in games and fun activities in a safe environment. This is a great opportunity for teens looking to earn some money or volunteer hours.
The program runs from 9 am to 4 pm Tuesday April 19 - Friday April 22.
Contact Park and Recreation if you are interested.
Social Media and Our Youth: A Virtual Mental Health Forum
On Sunday, May 1st, at 2 pm, the Becca Schmill Foundation will present “Social Media and Our Youth: A VIRTUAL Mental Health Forum.” Registration is free and the event is open to the public.
The two-panel forum, which is being held virtually in order to encourage maximum attendance, will feature nationally recognized and esteemed researchers, child/adolescent mental health professionals, teachers, and advocacy group members. The panelists will provide much-needed information on the current state of social media, how teens and children use it, and the increasing evidence that certain social media practices are dangerous to the physical and mental health of teens and younger children.
This mental health forum follows on the heels of President Biden’s State of the Union statement, in which he acknowledged the harms of social media. Furthermore, in the pre-speech Fact Sheet, the White House states “..[T]here is mounting evidence that social media is harmful to many kids’ and teens’ mental health, well-being, and development. As the Surgeon-General has said, ‘…[T]hese tools can pit us against each other, reinforce negative behaviors like bullying and exclusion, and undermine the safe and supportive environments young people need and deserve.’
Celebrate Earth Day 2022 with Clean-up, Tree Planting
Mothers out Front, Green Needham, and Environmental Club of Needham will host a Town Forest cleanup in honor of Earth Day. Join members of these groups on Saturday, April 30th from 12-2pm at the Quarry at Claxton Field (where NHS Boosters sells Christmas trees) to hear from various speakers, clean up the Town Forest, and meet other environmental enthusiasts. Trash bags and gloves will be provided.
Want another way to celebrate Earth Day?
Neighborhood Forest is sending the Needham Free Public Library 50 sapling trees to distribute for free in honor of Earth Day 2022 to help beautify our homes, reduce our carbon footprint, and install a sense of love for our planet in children. Register through the library’s calendar to receive a free sapling. Tree saplings will be ready to pick up at the Library beginning on Friday, April 22.
Additional Earth Day activities will be shared in this space next week.
Needham Youth and Family Services Thanks Community Partners for Support
Needham Youth and Family Services has received a number of donations from local organizations recently to support the work the division does to aid children and families in Needham. Thank you to the following:
100 Women Who Care of Needham, who earlier this year donated $2,600 to the Crisis Support Fund to help provide critical resources to families in Needham in need of assistance;
Needham Flag Football, who donated $2,000 for training and therapeutic equipment;
Needham Exchange Club for donating $1,500 to support trauma-informed care;
High Rock Church’s Jog for Joy for donating $1,688 from its 5K race; and
Forde Family, who donated $250.
Needham Golf Club Announces Residents’ Days
The Needham Golf Club has designated the following days as “Residents’ Days” for Needham residents who are not members:
Sundays of each week during the golf season from 3:00 P.M. to the closing of the course.
Mondays of each week, excluding Holidays, during the golf season from 3:00 P.M. to the closing of the course.
Tuesdays of each week during the golf season from 8:00 A.M. to the closing of the course.
The golf season runs from Sunday, April 24th, 2022 (weather and course conditions permitting) until November 1, 2022. Non-member residents may bring a guest on Residents’ Days. Players must wear proper golf attire including “spikeless” golf shoes or sneakers.
Tee times are available and recommended for play on Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays. Tee times can be reserved by signing up online starting at 3 PM on the Thursday prior to the day of play. A valid credit card must be provided at the time a tee time is reserved.
More information on the golf course can be found on the Needham Golf Club’s website.
APRIL 12th: In collaboration with the Needham Free Public Library, the Needham Community Farm hosts Plant Peas to Grow & Share Tuesday, April 12th, at 4 pm. Learn to plant and care for Tom Thumb peas. With the right amounts of water, sun and your tender loving care, you'll have pea plants in a few weeks, and then peas to eat. Join Needham Community Farm at the Needham Public Library Community Room for a fun-filled session of how to grow and take care of the plants! Supplies and instruction will be provided. This event is free. Registration is open and can be found on the Community Farm’s website.
APRIL 14th: Co-sponsored by Temple Beth Shalom Environmental Action Committee and Green Needham, Needham Community Farm hosts Landscaping with Native Plants Thursday, April 14th at 7:30 pm. Needham resident Joanne Neale, owner of Garden Mentor landscape design and consulting will talk about the benefits of native plants, how to prepare and what kinds of natives are available. Joanne’s gardening philosophy is based on low-maintenance, sustainability and organic methods, with an emphasis on native plants. This event is free. Register on the Community Farm’s website.
APRIL 16th: Paint Collection Day at the RTS. The Swap Shop will be closed that day to accommodate paint drop-off.
CALENDAR OF PUBLIC MEETINGS & EVENTS
***Meetings are linked to the relevant agenda***
Thursday, April 7, 2022
Historical Commission, 7 pm Select Board Chambers, Town Hall and via Zoom
Conservation Commission, 7 pm via Zoom
Friday, April 8, 2022
Domestic Violence Action Committee, 9 am via Zoom
Monday, April 11, 2022
Board of Assessors, 9:30 am via Zoom
School Council, 2:45 pm, Pollard Middle School, Media Center
Personnel Board, 4 pm via Zoom
Tuesday, April 12, 2022
Town Election, 7 am - 8 pm. Polling locations here.
Wednesday, April 13, 2022
West Suburban Health Group, Town Clerks and Secretaries, 10 am via Zoom
Youth and Family Services Board, 5:30 pm, Town Hall, Highland Room
Select Board, 6 pm, Town Hall (agenda to be posted soon)
Norfolk County Advisory Board on Expenditures, 6 pm via Zoom
Library Board of Trustees, 7 pm via Zoom
Traffic Management Advisory Committee, 7 pm via Zoom
Thursday, April 14, 2022
Housing Plan Working Group, 7 pm via Zoom (agenda to be posted soon)
Events shown as listed on the Town calendar as of 4/7/22. Don't forget to check out the Needham Meeting and Events calendar for updated information.
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Town of Needham
1471 Highland Ave.
Needham, MA 02492