05-23-13 News

Newton Upper Falls news, activities and events
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The Upper Falls News is an email newsletter about what's going on in our village.  The Upper Falls News is brought to you by the Upper Falls Area Council but it's intended to cover any and all news in the village. 

Where am I? - Here's a photo of a spot in Upper Falls without its surrounding context.  The game is to look at the photo and identify where in Upper Falls this little breakfast tableau is.

Family Fun Day at the Park - On Saturday June 1st, from 2 - 5PM, the Upper Falls Area Council will be holding the "Picnic for the Park" at the Emerson Playground.  You bring the picnic, they'll bring the fun.  There will be all sorts of fun, games and activities for the whole family.  The event will kick off the Emerson Playground - Building it Together project.  Come and take a look at the proposed plans for the new playground and put your two cents in.

New Neighbor - Say hello to our newest neighbor.  This little guy was born in Jan and Susan Huffman's yard on Indiana Terrace last week.  Looks like there's a brother or sister still to come.

That Old Map - Last issue we had a link to an old 1897 drawing/map of Upper Falls and asked about a long gone church.  Geralyn Citicone wrote "Just thought you'd like to know that the church in that old photo near Braceland Park was St. Mary's - the oldest Catholic church in Newton. The parish later built a larger church and moved to a new location - yes, you guessed it - it became Mary Immaculate of Lourdes on the corner of Eliot and Oak." 

and Dave Downs wrote "I think the church you mentioned across from the "lower playground" was the first Catholic Church in Upper Falls. It burned down and they rebuilt St, Mary's up on Oak St. My brother and I played in the "cellar" hole when we were kids. I remember when a house was built on that property. I think it may have been a duplex - I'm not sure."

The most impressive thing about that image is that it is not a technical map but an artist's hand drawing, done in a time before aerial or satellite photographs.  It's the view you'd see in 1897 looking down on Upper Falls if you were floating above Needham.  It was drawn by someone who had never seen that perspective - pretty amazing!

Insanity Breaks Out in Upper Falls - As she seems to do very regularly, Upper Falls middle schooler and all around great kid, Allie Riklin put together a fund raising activity to raise money for charity.  This time it was a lemonade stand to raise money for the AIDS Action Committee.  She made the lemonade, made the "Lemon-Aid" sign (very clever) and headed off to the corner of Oak and Chestnut Streets last Saturday morning to open her stand for business.  As soon as she set up her table and hung the sign, the manager of All Star Liquors came out and demanded to know if she had a permit to sell lemonade.   "What happens if someone buys your lemonade and gets sick?"  "They'll come after me." said the manager.  He was insistent and Allie packed up her stand and left.

What's crazier than worrying about a lemonade stand being a threat to public health, and crazier than worrying about legal liability from a 12 year old's nearby lemonade stand, is the fact that Allie was not even on the man's property.  Too often, the City of Newton authorities can go way overboard with permit-itis.  In this case though, Allie's mom called the city and was assured that they would have no problem with Allie's lemonade stand - good job City of Newton.  Let's hope that the manager of All Star Liquors was just having a bad day.

Water Craft Poll - We're thinking of organizing a neighborhood event on the river this summer and want to conduct a quick poll first.  If you own, or could borrow, a canoe, a kayak, a rowboat, a skiff, a dory, a dinghy, a paddle board, a pedalo, or a Huck Finn style raft for an afternoon, click here.

Bikes Crossing Street - A developer has plans to redevelop the Needham St parcel where Skipjacks restaurant and International Bicycles are located.  Skipjacks already closed its doors last June but I've been wondering what will happen to International Bicycles.  No worries though.  It turns out that they'll just be moving across the street, to the building just to the left of China Fair.

Future of Needham St - A community meeting will be held on June 6, 7-9PM at Countryside School about a redesign of Needham St.  Representatives from both the city of Newton and the state's Department of Transportation will be presenting their plans and soliciting comments.

Let's Watch Traffic - YouTube is a wonderful site for people to upload inexplicable videos for no apparent reason.  If you haven't yet seen enough of cars driving on Route 9 in Upper Falls, here's your chance.

Take it From the Top - As a few people pointed out, in the last issue I ran the following item with a bad link.  Here it is with the correct link, so it might make a bit more sense this time ...
A Bit of Upper Falls in London - Long before becoming "Editor in Chief" of the Upper Falls News.  My wife and I held equally exalted positions and titles at an equally important local institution.  This week, the London Times recognized the important work we did there.

Did You Know ... the electric chair was invented by a dentist"Did you know ..." features an interesting and random fact every issue, collected by ten-year-old Upper Falls resident Jayla Reilly.

Send Us Your News - If you have any upcoming events, activities, news, trivia, stories, anecdotes or jokes related to Upper Falls just send them to news@UpperFallsNews.org and we'll include them in the next newsletter.  For those who prefer living in the past, back issues of the Upper Falls News are archived at UpperFallsNews.org.

'Where Am I" Answer - That toaster, eggs, etc. are in the window of Bob's Sub Stop.  Thanks to Jan Huffman for this contribution.  Even though I go past that window once or twice a day on foot, it still took me a minute or two to figure it out - a testament to my keen powers of observation, and steel trap memory.