06-20-14 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? The game is to look at the photo and figure out where in Upper Falls you can see this unusual vehicle (answer below).

Feast of the Falls !!! - The 2nd annual Feast of the Falls is this Sunday, June 22 from 5 PM - 9 PM in Hemlock Gorge.  The weather predictions look delightful (70 degrees, partly sunny) for a 300 person feast in the park.  This year we've added a few new details.  At 5 PM, as the guests are walking through the streets towards Echo Bridge, the church bells will be ringing thanks to Pastor Bergdorf at the Baptist Church on Ellis Street.  We're also asking guests to bring any musical instruments they play with them to dinner.  After dessert we're planning to get everyone involved in a musical party - the "Feastenanny" so be prepared to sing, play and join in the fun. We've recruited a special guest as the ringleader of the Feastenanny.  For now we'll just call him the Feast's Pete Seeger.  IMPORTANT - all guests with tickets should arrive between 5  - 5:15PM.  At 5:45 all "no shows" tickets will be passed on to folks on the waiting list.

Lights, Cables, Action - If you can lend any sort of outdoor lights and/or outdoor extension cords to the Feast, please bring them to the far side of Echo Bridge Sunday afternoon around 1 PM.  Once again, we'll be using all your contributed equipment to light the park to help with the "tear down" after the event.  Be sure to put a label with your name, address, and phone on any equipment you bring and we'll get it back to you after the event.

Lend a Hand - The Feast is only possible with a large outpouring of volunteer effort from all of you.  If you're available on Sunday afternoon between 12 - 4PM come on over and lend a hand.  We'll have all sorts of ways you can help out.  Better yet, stick around at the end of the Feast and help dismantle everything.  At that point your help will be particularly appreciated since the crew will be exhausted after a long day.

The Fastest Hands in the Falls ... and maybe in the country.  11 year old Zhitong Liu is an astounding master of the Rubik's Cube.  Last month I saw him at the CCC talent show at Countryside school.  His hands were a blur of movement as the cube slowly turned to a single color.  A few months ago, Zhitong competed in a New England wide competition and won first place in both the "solo" and "group player" category.  On August 1 Zhitong and his family will travel to New Jersey where he will be competing in the US National Rubik's Cube competition.  We wish him the best in the competition.  Win, lose or draw in the Nationals, Zhitong is already a master of that infuriating cube.
Wetherell House to Come Down - over recent months, local residents Carol McPherson and Nina Kochs have been fighting tirelessly to prevent the demolition of a historic house on Wetherell Street.  While the 1835 house is indeed historic, it is located outside the border of the Upper Falls Historic District where demolition of properties is tightly controlled.  The developer had already received all the necessary permits for the demolition of the house but McPherson and Kochs were challenging the validity of the permits because of alleged problems with public process.   This week the case went to court and the judge decided for the developer, so the demolition is expected to begin in the coming days.

History of Hemlock Gorge - If you're not busy Sunday afternoon, helping to construct the Feast of the Falls at Hemlock Gorge, then maybe you'd like to learn a bit about the history of the Gorge.  Historic Newton will be leading a walking tour of the park led by Lucy Caldwell-Stair.  Meet in the small parking lot off Eliot St, just over the Charles River in Needham (Hamilton Place) at 2 PM.  An added bonus of the tour is that you'll be able to also see the Feast Crew hard at work constructing a banquet hall in the park.

I Could Throw a Rock ... OK, It's not in Upper Falls, but if you stood at the end of the Upper Falls Greenway and you had a really good arm, you might just be able to hit the new Bin Ends Wine store on the far side of Route 128.  (Note: The Upper Falls News law dept wants us to make clear that we don't recommend doing this).   I just discovered Bin Ends a few weeks ago.  It's only a few minutes away, tucked into a light industrial area alongside the 128 breakdown lane on Crawford St in Needham.  It's a warehouse sort of store that sells interesting wines at great prices and has a fabulous selection of craft beer too.   They only recently opened their Needham store but they're already getting involved in the neighborhood and are helping out as a sponsor of the Feast of the Falls.

Eggcelent Breakfast - The 2nd annual Eggcellent Breakfast two weeks ago was a big hit.  We went through 8 dozen eggs (1/2 Upper Falls. 1/2 Nonantum) and many many pounds of bacon for the 40-50 folks who turned up.  The guests brought all kinds of wonderful and interesting contributions to the breakfast.  Among my favorites: Marty Malkesian's homemade sausages and Brian Flaherty's home smoked bluefish.

Tour de Upper Falls - Last week's Tour de Newton flooded Upper Falls with a steady stream of bicycle riders from around the city for hours on Sunday morning.  Every 5 or 10 minutes all morning a new group of 25 riders would arrive at the Upper Falls stop at the Depot Coffee Shop.  Neighborhood locals Jennifer Kohl, Jan Huffman, Marie Jackson and the Biltmore's Joe Verange were our Upper Falls ambassadors. They gave each group of riders an overview of our village, handed out refreshments and sent them on their merry way.  One great twist our Upper Falls greeters came up with was their "I Was Here" board.  By the end of the day it had turned into a great souvenir of the event,

Zervas School Plans - In the coming years, the Zervas Elementary School will be rebuilt and nearly double in size.  There's a good chance that once that happens some Upper Falls kids will end up attending Zervas.   The Newton Highlands Neighborhood Area Council is sponsoring a survey to gather neighborhood input about the upcoming Zervas School expansion project. To fill out a very brief survey, please go to http://bit.ly/NH-school-survey or call 617-340-9262 for more information or to get a paper copy. Click here to see the latest project plans from June 4. If you have any questions or comments, please contact Steven Feinstein at sfeinstein@newtonma.gov.
Did You Know ...a birthday party invitation from 100 AD is the earliest known example of writing in Latin by a woman ?  "Did You Know ..." features an interesting and random fact every issue, collected by 6th grade Upper Falls resident Ian Wittler.

Spread The News - Ask your neighbors if they get the Upper Falls News.  If not forward them this issue and they can sign up for their own subscription here.

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 -  There are three correct answers to this question. 

1. The owner of this motorbike lives on Elliot Street and you can regularly see it parked in front of his house.
2. He works at the corner of Winter and Chestnut Streets so you can often see it parked on corner.
3. You can regularly see him commuting on his 1/2 mile Elliott-High-Winter St route.

When the weather's dicey he has the roof on.  On sunny days he drives topless.  Thanks to Jim Lerner for this "Where Am I?" contribution.