Royall House Opens for Tours May 23

Medford’s Royall House Museum, a colonial-era structure that was home to the largest slaveholding family in Massachusetts, re-opens for regular tours on May 23, according to an announcement. The museum will be open to visitors every Saturday and Sunday afternoon through October 25. Guided tours are offered on the hour at 1, 2, and 3 PM. Tours are free for members; non-member fees are $7 for adults, $5 for seniors and students, and $4 for children under 18. Admission to the Slave Quarters, which also houses the archaeological exhibit, gift shop, and restrooms, is free to all. More information is available at www.royallhouse.org.

– Information and photo from Royall House

Softball Team Defeats Malden

– Allison Goldsberry

The Medford High School softball team earned their second straight win with a 6-2 victory at Malden on Monday.

Senior captain Brianna Napoleone, pictured, once again led her team offensively with a triple, double, and two RBI’s. Napoleone is batting an impressive .595 and has 25 RBI’s so far this season, according to Coach Jack Dempsey.

Junior pitcher Ashley Eisnor won her eighth game of the season and also contributed a key two-base hit that drove home Medford’s fourth run of the game. According to Coach Dempsey, Eisnor’s ERA is under 1.00 and she has 109 strike outs and forty-two hits in seventy-three innings pitched.

Junior Renee Staude had three hits, two stolen bases, and scored two runs. Other Mustangs contributing to the offense include Julia Kearney (double and RBI), Hannah O’Leary (hit and two stolen bases), Bailey Flynn (hit and stolen base), Halle Farrell (double and RBI), and Mary Donnelly (single). Donnelly also made a “spectacular catch” in left field, said Dempsey.

Medford is tied for first place in the Greater Boston League with Everett. Both teams are 3-1 in the GBL while Medford is 8-3 overall.

Medford is on the road against Arlington Catholic on Thursday and returns home for a Friday night game with Winchester.

Lady Mustang Lacrosse Team Tops Salem

The Lady Mustang lacrosse team earned a decisive 17-4 win at Salem on Tuesday afternoon. Nicole Mortell and Brianna Burke led the team with four goals and three assists each, according to Coach Matt Galusi. Several Mustangs scored, including Hannah Gallup (three goals), Mady Carvello (two goals), Lily Carson (two goals), Caroline Daly (one goal), and Adrienne Porrazzo (one goal). Medford is 6-7 heading into Wednesday’s home game with Winthrop on Wednesday. The varsity team will play at Hormel Stadium at 6:00PM.

– InsideMedford.com

Harvard Street to be Closed Briefly for Green Line Construction Work May 16 & 17

The section of Harvard Street between Main Street and Boston Avenue will be closed for a brief period this weekend due to Green Line extension-related construction. Crews will be rebuilding the Harvard Street Rail Bridge. According to a notice released by the state’s Green Line Extension team, Harvard Street will be closed beginning at 4AM on Saturday, May 16 and will reopen on Sunday, May 17 at 9PM. Sidewalks under the Harvard Street bridge will also be closed at that time. Local residents will still be able to access Harvard Street, but there will be no traffic through the Harvard Street Rail Bridge due to construction. Traffic detour information is available on the Green Line Extension website.

– Information and photo from MassDOT.

Farmers Market Returns June 4

The Medford Farmers Market will open on June 4. The market will again take place on Thursdays from 3-7PM behind Medford City Hall. A contest will be held in which market-goers who post of photo of a dinner made with their purchases to the market’s Facebook page before the next market on June 11 could win $25 in market bucks.

– InsideMedford.com

Green Line Extension Meeting May 14th

Photo by Alexander Svirsky, MassRoads.com.

– Allison Goldsberry

MassDOT and the MBTA are hosting two public meetings in May to provide an update on the design of four stations of the Green Line Extension (GLX) project, according to information recently released by the state. On May 14 a public meeting about the Ball Square and College Avenue Stations will be held from 6-8PM at St. Clement School, 579 Boston Avenue. A meeting is also taking place on May 21 about the Lowell Street & Gilman Square Stations.

The federal government has agreed to contribute nearly $1 billion to extend the Green Line to Medford and Somerville. The money will cover around forty percent of the total cost of the project, which is now expected to top $2 billion. Construction has already begun, including a partial demolition of the Harvard Street Rail Bridge in Medford.

According to The Boston Globe, the latest completion date for the project is 2020.

Currently, two stations are planned for Medford, one in Ball Square on the Medford/Somerville line and another in the Medford Hillside neighborhood on College Avenue. The once $600 million project is now estimated to cost over $2 billion. And that’s just for six planned stops. The seventh, a stop at Route 16, could cost another $130 million, pushing the total cost of the project to over $2 billion.

McGlynn Submits Final Budget as Mayor

The Medford City Council will review the final budget of Mayor Michael McGlynn’s career this week.

The $155 million budget is more than $5 million more than this year’s budget. The schools are receiving nearly $53 million, an amount that is $1.8 million more than the current budget.

The School Committee have been hearing from department heads over the past several weeks in a series of pre-budget meetings while the Council will likely have those meetings over the next few weeks. The entire budget will be before the Council for approval at its May 12 meeting.

This budget is also the last for Stephanie Muccini Burke as Budget and Personnel Director. Burke recently announced her intentions to run for Mayor and she will be resigning as of May 15.

The proposed city budget can be viewed in the Council’s meeting notice on the city website.

Tuesday’s Council meeting is taking place at 7:00PM at Medford City Hall. It will be broadcast live on local access television.

– InsideMedford.com

School Committee to Meet May 11, 13

The Medford School Committee is holding two meetings this week.

On Monday, the Public Relations Subcommittee meeting will meet to discuss the district’s PR efforts, according to a public notice.

The meeting is taking place at 7:00PM in the Superintendent’s Conference Room at Medford High School.

On Wednesday, May 13 there is a Committee of the Whole meeting to receive and discuss the annual School Council reports, according to the notice.

That meeting is taking place at 7:00PM in the library at Medford High School.

– InsideMedford.com

West Medford Open Studios Returns May 16 & 17

Medford High School student Marcus Howard with his artwork at last year’s West Medford Open Studios.

In this Medford neighborhood signs of spring are popping up everywhere lately. Tulips are poking up in the yards, trees are budding, and on the third weekend in May, bright blue balloons will be dotted around the West Medford neighborhood marking the sites of the West Medford Open Studios.

West Medford Open Studios, an annual event showcasing the local arts community, returns on May 16 & 17 from noon to 5 pm. WMOS is a free (open studios) event that invites visitors from all over to experience exhibits of local art and crafts, musical and literary performances, and live arts demonstrations over the course of the weekend.

The 2015 WMOS will showcase over 70 artists participating at 26 sites—including community buildings, private homes, and studios—located throughout West Medford. Guided by an event map, visitors can drop in on each site at their leisure, all weekend long.

Though the number and diversity of participating artists have grown considerably in the 16 years (since WMOS first started), the event planners strive to keep the majority of sites within walking distance of each other.

“We try to group the sites close together so that visitors can experience as much as possible within the weekend. We are proud of the fact that our open studios event is enjoyable for people of all ages and art interests. Visiting open studios is a great way to see the exciting range of art that is being creating locally and connect with artists that are creating it,” says board member and artist Earl Howard.

Every year, visitors to WMOS are impressed by the quality and variety of the art on display. This years featured work will include paintings, glasswork, jewelry, textiles, pottery, turned wood, mosaics, photography, quilts, mixed media, and more. Additionally, a number of exciting free performances and demonstrations will also be offered: highlights include the music of Al & Katrin Peterson (of Porch Party Mamas), a student-teacher rock band show, open jam sessions, pottery demonstrations, clay hand-building demos, and readings by local writers.

The WMOS event map can be found on the website WMOS.ORG. In addition, visitors to the springtime event will be guided from event to event–and from artist to artist-by WMOS’s signature bright blue balloons tied in front of each site location. So take a stroll, meet up with a friend, listen to some music, enjoy and buy some art, or take a studio tour, but just don’t miss out on the festivities of the West Medford Open Studios!

West Medford Open Studios is a non-profit organization supported by the Medford Cultural Council, participating artists, Tufts University, local businesses, and friends. For more information about West Medford Open Studios, visit WWW.WMOS.ORG or contact Tanya Howard (781) 706-0451.

– Information from Tanya Howard. Photo by Allison Goldsberry.

Madeleine Albright to Deliver Tufts Commencement Address May 17

Diplomat and Foreign Policy Leader among Honorary Degree Recipients

Madeleine AlbrightMadeleine Albright, who reinforced America’s alliances, advocated for democracy and human rights and promoted American trade as well as its business, labor and environmental standards abroad while serving as the United States’ first woman secretary of state, will deliver Tufts University’s commencement address on May 17, 2015. She will also receive an honorary doctor of laws degree during the Sunday morning ceremony that will start at 9 o’clock on The Green on Tufts’ Medford/Somerville campus.

Albright was born in 1937 in Prague and as a child moved with her family to the United States. After earning a B.A. in political science at Wellesley College and a Ph.D. in public law and government at Columbia University, Albright was inspired by one of her former professors to enter politics.

She served on the staffs of Senator Edmund Muskie; President Jimmy Carter; Geraldine Ferraro, the first woman nominated for vice president by a major political party; and Michael Dukakis during his 1988 presidential bid. President Bill Clinton tapped her for the role of U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations in January 1993. According to The New Republic, she said that “U.S. leadership in world politics and in multilateral organizations is a fundamental tenet of the Clinton Administration.”

In December 1996, Clinton nominated Albright to be secretary of state. She was sworn in the following January, becoming, at the time, the highest-ranking woman ever to serve in the United States government. As secretary of state, Albright campaigned for human rights and fought to stop the spread of nuclear weapons. A champion of NATO, she sought to expand that organization’s membership. Albright also worked to bring peace to the Middle East.

Albright left her post as secretary of state in 2001. She has since written five New York Times best sellers, including Madam Secretary: A Memoir (2003) and her most recent book, Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War (2012). Known for her symbolic use of jewelry on the job, Albright also wrote Read My Pins: Stories from a Diplomat’s Jewel Box (2009). Albright currently serves as the co-chair of the Albright Stonebridge Group, a global strategy firm, and also launched a private investment fund, Albright Capital Management, in 2007. She is the chairwoman of the National Democratic Institute and the Truman Scholarship Foundation.

Albright’s many honors include receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama in 2012.

The trail-blazing Albright is recognized for actively supporting other women seeking to follow her example, saying “once you have climbed the ladder of success … you don’t push it away from the building.”

“Madeleine Albright’s remarkable accomplishments and personal story truly speak to Tufts’ values of global leadership, public service and active engagement as a citizen of the world,” said Tufts President Anthony P. Monaco. “She delivered a memorable Fares Lecture at Tufts seven years ago, and we are absolutely delighted that she will be returning to the university for this year’s Commencement.”

In addition to Albright, leaders receiving honorary degrees at Tufts’ Commencement include:

Suzin Bartley, executive director of the Children’s Trust Fund. Established in 1988 by the Massachusetts Legislature, the Children’s Trust is the only state organization dedicated to preventing child abuse and neglect, supporting more than 100 family education programs and offering training and technical assistance to professionals who work with at-risk children and their families. Bartley will receive an honorary doctor of public service degree.

Joichi “Joi” Ito, activist, entrepreneur, venture capitalist and advocate of emergent democracy, privacy and Internet freedom. As director of the MIT Media Lab, he is currently exploring how radical new approaches to science and technology can transform society in substantial and positive ways. Ito will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree.

Joseph Neubauer, business and civic leader, Tufts trustee emeritus and alumnus of the Tufts School of Engineering. Neubauer, who emigrated to the U.S. from Israel as a teenager, became chairman and CEO of diversified food, facility and uniform services giant Aramark Corp. A member of many civic and philanthropic boards, he received the Corporate Citizenship Award from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal, and was inducted into the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, among other honors. Neubauer will receive an honorary doctor of public service degree.

Navanethem “Navi” Pillay, jurist and human rights advocate. She served as the United Nations high commissioner for human rights. A South African of Indian Tamil origin, she became the first non-white woman to open her own law practice in Natal Province and later the first non-white woman judge of the High Court of South Africa. She has served on many international tribunals, advocating for rights of women, gays, political prisoners, survivors of sexual assault and other marginalized groups. Pillay will receive an honorary doctor of laws degree at commencement and on May 16 will address Fletcher School graduates during their Class Day ceremonies.

Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, dancer, teacher and choreographer using cultural expression as a catalyst for social change. Zollar is the Nancy Smith Fichter Professor of Dance and Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor at Florida State University and the founder of Urban Bush Women, which brings the histories and stories of disenfranchised people to light through both a woman-centered perspective and the experiences of the African Diaspora community. Zollar will receive an honorary doctor of fine arts degree.

– Information from Tufts University