The Winchendon Courier
Serving the community since 1878 ~ A By Light Unseen Media publication
Week of July 21 to July 28, 2022
What makes Winchendon what it is...How we're making Winchendon even better

HEAT TOO MUCH FOR YOU? Protect Your Health!
at the Clark Memorial YMCA at 155 Central St., Winchendon.
Friday July 22: 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Saturday July 23 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Open to All Who Need It

Old Farm, New Farmers: It's a Bright New Dawn for Sunset View Farm

Sunset View Farm farm stand
Sunset View Farm farm stand

Inside the Sunset View Farm farm stand. Stop by early in the day!
Photos by Inanna Arthen

Sunset View Farm, located on Gardner Road (Rte 140), is a beloved Winchendon institution that was owned and operated for many years by Livvy and Chuck Tarleton until they retired at the end of last season. New owners James and Adrienne Watson purchased the farm with its 1790 farmhouse this year, and took over full operations without the slightest thought of easing into the job. Now at the peak of their first season, Adrienne Watson generously gave the Courier time out of her full day to talk about their booming new endeavor.

Former residents of Baldwinville, the Watsons had always gardened on their half acre property. "My husband is a woodworker, he's a custom woodworker. He's a cabinet maker, but his passion is farming," Adrienne said. Adrienne, a professional hairdresser for 20 years, met the Tarletons through her job at the More Strength and Fitness gym next door to Little Anthony's on Spring Street about five years ago (the gym did not survive the COVID shutdown). The Watsons bought vegetables from the Sunset View farm stand, and James started volunteering to work on the farm about three years ago.

When the Tarletons were ready to retire, Adrienne said, they told the Watsons they wanted to see someone carry it on as a working farm. "The opportunity just came in," she said. "I said to my husband, well, it's now or never, this is your passion. How many people get to really live out their dream, you know, it's perfect, perfect, it just all aligns perfectly."

Sunset View Farm is held under a conservation restriction with Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust and North County Land Trust in tandem. The Watsons had to fill out applications and be approved, and agree with the restrictions. The property must be preserved as a farm in perpetuity, and has an Option to Purchase at Agricultural Value (OPAV) condition to facilitate it being sold for farming. "We're totally on board with everything they're doing to preserve it, and we want the same thing. So our goals really matched up," Adrienne said.

The 70-acre property, including woods and trails abutting the North Central Pathway, has about five acres of farmland, of which three acres are currently in active cultivation. The Watsons are not raising poultry or stock, just vegetables--among other reasons, Gardner Road is high-traffic and high-speed and there are no fences between the property and the road. Livestock also involves very different operational models.

Asked what crops the farm is growing now, Adrienne laughed, "Gosh, what don't we have is more of the question." She listed, "we have kale, we have lettuce, we have spinach. We have our black raspberries or red raspberries. We have shelling peas, sugar snap peas, green beans, wax beans, flat Italian beans. Radishes, Kolrabi, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, cucumbers. Tons of tomato plants are going--that's probably the biggest crop, tomatoes. We have pumpkins and gourds and flowers and carrots, beets. I know I'm missing a lot more there. But we have a variety of everything."

As is probably true at every farm stand in New England, the most popular crop of all is one the Watsons don't grow themselves: sweet corn. Sunset View Farm has corn, never fear, grown in Sunderland, on the same farm where the Tarletons would go for corn for the farm stand. But the second biggest seller, and one which customers are eagerly asking for, is tomatoes. Row after row after row of tomato plants are burgeoning now, but the tomatoes are just starting to ripen. Tiny cucumbers are popular, as well, and lettuce.

Adrienne said that the stand typically sells out of everything, because they're judicious about not picking too much at the start of the day. Occasionally something like sweet corn that is unsold is put out for "self serve" purchasers who may stop by, but ideally, all the produce is gone by the end of the day.

What is a typical day like on Sunset View Farm? Adrienne said that James is up at 4:00 a.m. every day. "He just goes out to the field and you know, it depends on what part of the season it is for what we're doing...this month, he's up, he's uncovering the plants that we have to cover every night so the deer don't get into them. And then he's out there picking all of whatever he needs to pick for the day because we try to pick everything today. And then he's washing it and then he gets it all in baskets for me."

Then James goes to work at his full-time cabinet-making job in Gardner. Meanwhile, Adrienne is caring for their one-year-old son and three older daughters, getting the family's day started. The three girls all help with the farm. "They love being outside and they love doing it with us," Adrienne said. "So thank God for summers. This is probably why there is school vacation." (Which in fact, is exactly correct--the school calendar was designed around the farming year.) It's a slower paced lifestyle, she said, without cable TV (although they do have internet).

"We're setting up the stand, we're putting up the signs, we're making sure all the veggies are put out, that kind of thing. And then you're working out in the stand and it's busy from ten to five and then my husband gets home about four o'clock, and he will usually help me shut down the stand, put everything away, clean up and then he's out in the field, whether it's planting or weeding or starting new seeds and then watering."

Due to the dry weather--our area is currently in "moderate drought"--the Watsons have had to water up to six hours a day. "Thank God for the rain the other day," Adrienne said, because vegetables require a minimum amount of water every week. "Then he's covering the plants and we're not getting in until eight o'clock at night. Sometimes he's not getting in till ten o'clock at night. It all depends on what we're doing." A day on the farm runs for sixteen or more hours in the growing season. Planting doesn't just happen once. Seeds for vegetables like beans and lettuce may be planted throughout the season.

On a tour around the fields, Adrienne explained that James is farming with no chemicals, herbicides or pesticides, other than organic remediations for fungus. He is also moving cultivation into the no-till method of farming, which utilizes raised beds and mulching to keep the cultivated areas free of weeds without disturbing the soil more than absolutely necessary. A wide variety of mulching materials including plastic, cardboard, wood chips and sawdust could be seen on the rows. This technique successfully revived a stand of black raspberry bushes which had looked like goners a year ago. This farming method is intensive but requires less heavy equipment and fuel than conventional farming.

Sunset View Farm farm stand
Cabbage in no-till row beds.
Photo by Inanna Arthen
Sunset View Farm farm stand
Black raspberries bounced back and are thriving thanks to no-till farm methods.
Photo by Inanna Arthen

The Watsons start their seeds indoors under lights in March, then move them outside into cold frames and finally into a small hoop-and-plastic greenhouse. The property also boasts an array of solar panels.

In addition to the vegetables, Sunset View Farm has its own sugarbush and sugaring house, and produces about 20 gallons of maple syrup per year, beginning around February. In the past, Mount Grace has sponsored events when the public could come and see the sugaring operation first-hand.

Along with the Watson family, Nancy, a friend of Adrienne's, pitches in to help cover the stand on Tuesdays. The Tarletons, who now live in Winchendon's Old Centre, come by several times a week, mentoring and helping out. Livvy is still making the homemade jellies and jams the stand sells, Adrienne said, but she will be taking this task over in another year. The farm has a certified commercial kitchen which is inspected regularly by the Winchendon Board of Health.

Adrienne said that the customers who always loved the farm stand are still regulars. "[The Tarletons] established a great clientele base that just love it. So a lot of customers didn't even know that it switched hands, and a lot of them that are finding out are just thankful that we're keeping it the same as what Chuck and Livvy did." She feels like nothing has changed, the stand is as busy as it was when the Tarletons ran it.

"I would like to say, I thank everybody that I've met so far for welcoming us," Adrienne said. "Everybody's been wonderful to talk to. The clients are great that come in, and we just hope that we are gonna do Chuck and Livvy proud, and we'll carry on their tradition because they really established this right. They were at it for forty years and they've taken great care of the property, great care of this house...we want to just continue the way they did it. We don't want to over-commercialize anything. And just keep it an affordable, fresh, local farm stand for people."

Sunset View Farm is open Tuesday through Sunday (closed Monday), from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. It is located at 156 Gardner Road (Rte 140), Winchendon. Keep up with daily updates on their new Facebook page,

Sunset View Farm farm stand
Adrienne Watson with a young future farmer.
Photo by Inanna Arthen
Sunset View Farm farm stand
The sugar house. The farm took its name from the sign, which the Tarletons found when they first bought the property decades ago, according to Adrienne.
Photo by Inanna Arthen

Sunshine Café and CAC Farm Stand Provide Opportunities for Winchendon Youth

Youth Changemakers cafe and CAC Farm Stand
Angelina Dellasanta, supervising the Sunshine Café, coaches a Root Leader intern through a simulated purchase.
Youth Changemakers cafe and CAC Farm Stand
The Winchendon CAC Farm Stand and the Youth Changemakers' Sunshine Café.
Photo by Inanna Arthen

Central Street may look like I-84 in Connecticut, the grass may be brown and crunchy, but two new businesses are now open on the front lawn of the Winchendon CAC that should not be missed. The Winchendon CAC Farm Stand, newly constructed with a grant obtained by recently retired Director Jennifer Sibley, is now open and selling fresh produce to all, accepting credit or debit cards and cash as well as SNAP/HIP cards. All produce is locally grown and is provided by Growing Places of Leominster. Along with the Farm Stand, the Youth Changemakers Mobile Café, now named the Sunshine Café, is open on Tuesday and Wednesday, selling iced coffee, iced tea and lemonade. A familiar sight around town, the Café now has a semi-permanent spot by the Farm Stand.

Angelina Dellasanta, Youth Changemaker leader and supervisor of the Café that day, took a break from training interns to tell the Courier how the Café got started.

"It started in 2019. There was a group of Murdock students and Winchendon School students who came together to try and think about what Winchendon was lacking for teenagers, and we landed on a designated teen space because there hasn't been one in town for like twenty years," she began. "So with that we thought, a coffee shop would probably be the ideal place, it's kind of trendy, things like that. So we started off with that idea, but then COVID hit so it kind of got put on hold. But then our current Youth Changemaker leaders took the project over."

The Winchendon School donated a cart and some supplies, and the "Youth Changemakers Mobile Café" starting appearing at town events, largely pushed manually along the roads by the students themselves. The Café has set up at the Friday concert series in G.A.R. Park (where it is appearing this summer), the Winchendon Community Park, Fall Fest, all over town. Ms. Dellasanta said they were trying to "attend as much as we can to put ourselves out there and try and become more sustainable as a business."

Now, she said, the Winchendon CAC is letting them work out of the Farm Stand and sell beverages two days a week. "Just to have a physical building to keep all of our stuff has been great," she said. "We're looking to build out of that, too. Eventually we want a physical building for teenagers to be able to go, you know, all [town] residents, but for teenagers to be able to come and be like, 'Yeah, this is somewhere we can hang out.'" They may work with the developing Maker Space as well.

"We have our foot in a lot of doors here...The end goal is to just be able to have that business, that physical building that teens can be proud to be Winchendon residents, proud to say that they have something here. That's like the end goal. It's how it started." Ms. Dellasanta said.

Having a real physical space at the CAC has led the group to think about rebranding. "From now on, we're gonna be known as the Youth Changemakers Sunshine Café. And it's representing the rays of light that we're going to be bringing into the community. So we're kind of excited about it." Members of the team were brainstorming logos that day.

The Café sells fresh squeezed, homemade lemonade and "sun tea" (iced tea made from tea bags that steep naturally in a jar placed in a sunny spot). For coffee, the Café has been using Dean's Beans, but are switching to organic, fair trade coffee beans hand-roasted in Winchendon by local entrepreneurs Mike and Heather Connor, marketed as Wicked Good Beans. Eventually the Youth Changemakers hope to add some pastries and food items to their menu but "the beverages are the easiest way just to get our feet on the ground."

Financially, the Café is working toward becoming a self-sustaining business. All proceeds from its sales go to supporting the Youth Changemaker projects, and usually are spent on supplies such as sweeteners and creamers. The Youth Changemakers applied for a United Way Youth Venture grant and received $500 to pay for a Bluetooth speaker for music and a pair of small patio tables with chairs for customers to use.

While there are several ServSafe® certified adults who oversee the operation of the Café, members of the Youth Changemakers plan to take the training and become ServSafe® certified as well.

The Café is being staffed by several summer interns called "Root Leaders" who are also assisting with the CAC Farm Stand and the HEAL Community Learning Gardens (the gardens are located by the CAC, adjacent to Murdock Farm's ice cream stand and at the Winchendon School).

This was the second week that the Café had been open, and Ms. Dellasanta said that "we're still getting started." Most of their customers have been CAC clients or people walking by, and foot traffic has, obviously, been greatly reduced by the Central Street Reconstruction project. They are posting to social media, making a new sign for the stand and will be posting flyers.

Asked what she wanted people to know about the Café, Ms. Dellasanta said, "We'll be here the whole summer twice a week. Just knowing that all the funds that we get go back into youth programming. So it's all just for the betterment of the community. We would love for people to come by the CAC, more people to buy produce, stuff like that. That's kind of HEAL's mission, right? We're trying to build a healthier, better Winchendon so as much participation as we can."

Winchendon CAC Interim Director and HEAL Winchendon Program Manager Miranda Jennings explained that the Youth Changemakers is supported through a number of different entities and organizations. "The overall program is funded through HEAL with support of the schools," she told the Courier. "The Murdock High School created the Action Civics and Citizenship class...that's the school's program and we just worked with Candace Frye, who's the teacher, to support her and to provide Youth Changemaker pathways." The private Winchendon School, meanwhile, has a Service Learning and Impact Program for students. "We coordinate with the staff there to complement and provide that hands-on community outreach work," Ms. Jennings said.

HEAL Winchendon has provided some grant funds to pay for stipends for the Youth Changemaker leaders, but the young people themselves have worked on obtaining grants. They applied for and received funding from the Winchendon Cultural Council for the second Taste of Winchendon festival, held on May 14. A grant from Mount Wachusett Community College supported the after-school program at Toy Town Elementary and Murdock Middle School. The grants paid for staffing and snacks. Snacks were also donated by the CAC. "So it's like this collaborative effort," Ms. Jennings said.

Funding from the Portrait of a Graduate project paid for summer interns, of which the ten working with the Café, Farm Stand and gardens are all Winchendon residents. "So every Friday they meet and they do reflections about what they're learning in terms of the different pillars of the Portrait [empathy, creative thinking, adaptability, and collaboration]," Ms. Jennings went on. "So communication, empathy, are we bringing to life over the summer, how we're creating these hands-on learning experiences that are linked to real world skills, when kids wanted financial literacy, so they're running a business. They wanted to learn to improve their communication. So they're writing a blog and they're doing customer service."

The Portrait of a Graduate funding only runs to the end of August, but there is hope of finding other funding sources to extend the positions. "The kids need jobs because we wanted to make it accessible for kids," Ms. Jennings said. "You know, some kids can't volunteer, because they can't work. So we wanted to be able to merge the two so they can do service work and leadership building and get paid for it."

The Winchendon CAC is located at 273 Central Street, next to CVS. The Café and Farm Stand are open on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Cash, credit/debit cards and SNAP/HIP are all accepted.

Sunshine Café customers may place orders in advance online by using this form:

Railroad Street Work Continues with Framing Curbs for Parking Spaces

Sunset View Farm farm stand
Sunset View Farm farm stand

Views of the new curbing on Railroad Street.
Photos by Inanna Arthen

Work continues on Railroad Street with the completion of curb extensions to frame the angled parking spaces and help prevent through traffic from getting too close to the parked cars. While this has raised comment on social media from some residents, the practicality from a safety standpoint is obvious. The extensions also will help beautify the street, as grass and trees will be planted in them, according to the engineer's plans.

The Railroad Street reconstruction is funded through the 2020 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and was approved during the tenure of previous Town Manager Keith Hickey. Former Department of Public Works Director Al Gallant has served as the project's Clerk of the Works Project Supervisor. Mr. Gallant is very familiar with the town's needs as far as winter snow plowing and road safety are concerned. The engineers who designed the project are Weston & Sampson based in Reading, MA. A detailed plan may be viewed on the town website. (JPEG).

For previous Courier coverage of the project since its inception, including controversy, see:

"Selectmen Discuss Community Development Block Grant for Reconstruction of Railroad Street" in the December 12-19 2019 edition of the Winchendon Courier

"Railroad Street Reconstruction Walk-through and Public Hearing Scheduled" in the January 16-23 2020 edition of the Winchendon Courier

"Railroad Street Business Owners Express Concerns about Reconstruction Project" in the February 13-20 2020 edition of the Winchendon Courier

"Railroad Street Updates in Progress Despite Supply Chain Backup" in the October 28-November 4 2021 edition of the Winchendon Courier

Solar Array Zaps Toy Town Electrical Grid

Winchendon residents were recently posting to social media, contacting National Grid and calling Town Hall about an epidemic of brief interruptions in their electrical service. Sometimes residents would only realize their power had gone out when they had to keep resetting the clocks on their microwaves and stoves. Some Toy Towners wondered if the Central Street Reconstruction project or other town work was involved.

On Wednesday, July 20, National Grid confirmed that the interruptions were caused by a "private solar field." The solar installation has been disconnected from the power grid to stop the issues.

Robinson Broadhurst Grantees for 2022

For the 2022 grant cycle, the Robinson Broadhurst Foundation awarded 28 grants to Winchendon organizations and/or for projects directly benefiting Winchendon, for a total amount of $1,083,150. The 2022 recipients are:

Ahimsa Haven Animal Shelter
Boy Scout Troop 193
Cornerstone Church
Gardner Area League of Artists
Growing Places
House of Peace & Education
Immaculate Heart of Mary Church
Mount Wachusett Community College (2)
Operation Winchendon Cares
Scouts BSA Troop 7193
Unitarian Universalist Church
Town of Winchendon
Town of Winchendon Council on Aging
Town of Winchendon Planning & Development
Town of Winchendon DPW
Town of Winchendon Town Clerk
Town of Winchendon Public Schools
United Parish
Wendell P Clark Memorial YMCA (2)
Winchendon Community Action Committee
Winchendon Community Park Committee
Winchendon Cub Scout Pack 193
Winchendon Center for History and Culture
Winchendon Winds
Winchendon Wreath Fund

Be sure to check out our Classified and Employment Ads on the Events Page!

Vacancy Open on the Capital Planning Committee

The Capital Planning Committee is charged with the following: considers requests for major equipment purchases and other capital projects and makes recommendations to the town manager and the town meeting.

This position is appointed by the Town Moderator, Coral Grout. Apply in writing to the Town Manager office Attention:Tamarah at Letters of interest will be accepted until July 23, 2022 at the end of business.

Subway June 2022 New Steak Teriyaki Sub

Central Mass Tree

Fitzwilliam's Ron Morey to Perform at G.A.R. Park on Friday, July 22

Ron Morey, a musician from Fitzwilliam, NH, will perform at the G.A.R. Park on Friday, July 22 for the Winchendon Recreation Department's Summer Concert Series. Morey performed at Fall Fest, delighting listeners with his skill on acoustic guitar and his original and cover numbers. If you missed it, you can get a sampling on his YouTube Channel. Morey's melodic style is perfect listening for a warm summer evening.

The concert begins at 6:00 p.m. and runs until approximately 8:00 p.m. Bring lawn chairs or a blanket to sit on. G.A.R. Park is located at Grove Street and Murdock Ave. next to the Old Murdock Senior Center. Concerts are free to the public.

Morey generously steps in for the previously scheduled Faceless Hobos, winners of the "Battle of the Bands," who had a last-minute scheduling conflict. Faceless Hobos will play on Friday, August 5.

Splash into Science at the Beals Memorial Library

Surf over to the Winchendon library for some great summer programs! Each week, as part of their ongoing Summer Reading Club, the library is holding programs that are sure to be oceans of fun! Here's what's happening the week of July 25 - 29:

On Tuesday, July 26, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., take a walk with a fin-tastic fish story during the fourth and final Oceans of Possibility Storywalk of the summer. Join the Beals Memorial Library and the Winchendon Coordinated Family and Community Engagement Grant (CFCE) for a fun, interactive outdoor storytime by following the path of poster boards set up throughout the library lawn. The final story of the month will be The Pout-Pout Fish, by Deborah Diesen. Mr. Fish swims through the sea with a permanent frown. Can his pals cheer him up and turn that frown upside down? Come to the program to find out! Each child who participates will receive a book while supplies last!

On Wednesday, July 27, at 2:00 p.m., join Melissa the Mad Scientist for her annual Junior Mad Scientists program. Get your hands wet with some ocean-themed science experiments! Learn about how scientists make observations and test the waters with some fun, hands-on experiments! This program is intended for children ages 6 - 10 and participants must have a grown-up with them. The program will also be held outside and participants should dress in clothes that are okay to get messy in. Space is limited, so contact the library to sign up!

The Beals Memorial Library is located at 50 Pleasant Street in Winchendon. For more information or to sign up for programs, contact the library at 978-297-0300 or visit their website at

Ocean-themed experiments with Melissa the Mad Scientist
Dive into some ocean-themed science experiments with Melissa the Mad Scientist on Wednesday, July 27, at the Beals Memorial Library.
Photo courtesy of Beals Memorial Library

Stone Ladeau Funeral Home

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Letter to the Editor

New viral variants begin trending upward in both Toy Town and area

The Town of Winchendon in just the last two weeks after reaching just 2.78 percent viral positivity on July 7, has already nearly doubled as of the newest Mass Department of Public Health data released on Thursday, July 21, as Winchendon just tested at 5.15% positivity. Additionally as a Ten Town Area, our region in that same time span, has also increased from just 2.42, to now 6.22 percent viral positivity testing, also up from just a week ago at 3.76%.

In our local 10 town area, 9 out of 10 municipalities increased, two even moving in to double digits, with only one decreasing ever so slightly, the Town of Athol in a virtual lateral. Moving up along with Winchendon were Ashburnham increasing from 2.76 to 5.45, Ashby more than doubling from 5.06 to 10.45%, Westminster increasing from 6.04 to 7.95%, the City of Gardner growing from 3.37 to 5.32%, Phillipston jumping from 7.69 to 10.34%, Royalston who spent several consecutive weeks at zero percent, now moving to 6.12% positivity, Hubbardston increasing from 1.95 to 3.55%, and lastly the Town of Athol, the only municipality to lower ever so slightly dropping from 4.12 to 4.00 percent. Over all, again our Ten Town Area, has increased in a very short time span of just two weeks, from 2.42 to 6.22% positivity.

At the Commonwealth level, Massachusetts in just the last two weeks has also grown from 6.04% on July 7, moving upward registering 7.05% on July 14, and now almost two percent higher in just two weeks later at 7.94% positivity on Thursday, July 21. In that same time, the commonwealth's largest city, Boston, has also increased from 6.46, to 8.03% positivity testing as the newer Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 variants have become both the regional and national dominant viral strains.

Multiple towns around the commonwealth are seeing surges. The Town of Carlisle now tests at 16.56 percent. The City of Lawrence registers at 13.80 percent. Even closer to home, the small town of Dunstable now tests at 14.52 percent. Barre to our near south, tests at 10.42 percent, and to the near west and south west, multiple small towns test at 8, 9, 10, and even 12 percent positivity.

In closing easy common sense steps can go a long way in aiding to keep you healthy. Don't rub your eyes with your hands, as the fluid in your eyes is a nearly instant source of transmission for viral infection. Also, cough or sneeze on your sleeve if possible, as you may simply forget to wash your hands. Lastly, use hand sanitizer and or wash your hands, especially after touching multiple contact surfaces. While it's easy to forget, it's a very good habit of prevention to keep in mind.

The Town of Winchendon Board of Health continues to recommend vaccination for those healthy enough to do so, especially of one is either immunocompromised or has pre-existing conditions.

Keith Kent
Board of Health
Town of Winchendon

Transfer Station Summer Hours

Beginning June 2, the Transfer Station hours are:
Thursday 8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Saturday 8:00 a.m. 4:00 p.m.

653 River Street
Sticker price: $70
Pay-As-You-Throw bags required

Senior Center Seeking Food Donations

We've been so successful we need your help. We love helping our seniors, so now our Food Pantry is running low. If you can do it, we'd love your help replenishing it with such commodities as: Hormel 'Compleats' meals; Chef Boyardee ravioli, spaghetti & meatballs, etc; applesauce; canned vegetables; juice boxes; Ensure; spaghetti sauce; Cookies; Crackers; small (individual) packages of cereal, etc. And anything you think would help. Thank you very much! Bring donations to the Old Murdock Senior Center, 52 Murdock Ave., Winchendon.

Winchendon Farmers Market Accepting Applications for 2022 Vendors

The Winchendon Farmers Market is accepting applications for vendors for the 2022 season. You can download the form at Winchendon Farmers Market Application (PDF), fill it out and mail the form with the table fee to the address on the form, or drop it in the dropbox at Town Hall. The market days and times for 2022 are Thursdays from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. For more information, see

Report a Pothole to the DPW

You can report potholes directly to the DPW using this form on the town website:

Winchendon Town Hall & Transfer Station Now Accepting Credit/Debit Payments

We are excited to announce that the DPW, Treasurer/Collector's Office and the Transfer Station can all now accept in-person credit and debit card payments. This means next time you need to purchase or pay for:

Trash bags
Transfer station stickers
Excise bills
Tax bills
Water & Sewer bills
And more

You can pay with a credit or debit card! (subject to a convenience fee).

HEAL Winchendon Offering Financial Coaching Workshops

HEAL Winchendon, in conjunction with the Winchendon CAC, is offering a free financial coaching program to any residents who are interested. The program runs for eight weeks with a flexible schedule and is available in both English and Spanish. Coaching will be scheduled at the Winchendon CAC, 273 Central St. To enroll, fill out the form at HEAL Financial Coaching Sign-Up (Google form) or call 978-621-4524.

If You Call for Emergency Services...

...the Winchendon Fire Department asks that you let the dispatcher know if you have flu-like symptoms, are quarantined or are under self-quarantine. This will allow the first responders to take all necessary precautions to avoiding spreading COVID-19 and to protect themselves and you.

Help the Town of Winchendon Update its Housing Production Plan by Sharing Your Input

The Town of Winchendon has requested assistance from the Montachusett Regional Planning Commission (MRPC) to update its Housing Production Plan (HPP). The purpose of the HPP is to develop a proactive strategy for planning and developing affordable housing consistent with the state's Chapter 40B statute and regulation. The HPP is required to include a comprehensive housing needs assessment, a list of affordable housing goals, and an implementation plan to realize the goals.

This survey has been developed to assist with the housing needs assessment and solicit public input to be included in the HPP. We appreciate your opinions and want to assure you that all answers are anonymous. In addition to the survey, MRPC will be collecting and analyzing demographic, housing, and income data to determine needs of the population of Winchendon. Results of the data analysis and survey will be presented at a Planning Board meeting in the fall where goals and objectives will be discussed.

Please see link below to complete. Thank you for your participation!

Toy Town FYIs

2022 Street Lists Available

The 2022 Town of Winchendon Street List of Residents is now available at the Town Clerk's office in Town Hall, 109 Front Street. Cost is $8.00 each, $5.00 for seniors.

2022 Dog Licenses Now Available

2022 dog licenses are now available. You may purchase at the Town Clerk's office using check or cash, or you may purchase through the mail, Town Hall drop box, or online through the Town Clerk's page. The licenses will be mailed to you. Please be sure to provide a valid rabies certificate. Spayed and neutered dogs are $10.00. Non-spayed and non-neutered dogs are $20.00.

Sign up for Code Red Emergency Alerts
Sign up for our emergency notification program today! Receive up-to-date information before, during and after an emergency in your neighborhood. You can choose to be notified via voice, text and email notifications of emergency and inclement weather alerts.

Is Your House Number Clearly Visible from the Street?
The Winchendon Fire Department reminds all residents to make sure their house number is clearly visible for first responders who may need to find you. Numbers should be at least four inches high and facing the street, with lighting if possible. Put numbers on a contrasting background so they will stand out. If your driveway is long, put the number on a mailbox or pole on the street or at the end of driveway, facing in both directions. (Reflective numbers are helpful.) Check your house numbers to make sure foliage has not grown up in front of them without your being aware of it.

United Way Day of Caring September 16

Local non-profit agencies should start planning potential projects now for the United Way's 27th annual "Day of Caring" event on Friday, September 16, 2022. Agency project registration opens on June 13. To register, visit

Qualifying agencies have teams of volunteers assigned to their site to assist with various projects. For updates and further information, see

Town Committee Vacancies
as of June 27, 2022

If you'd like to be an active participant in decision-making and management for your community, consider joining a town committee or board. There are a number of vacancies currently open.

Communications Committee - 1 vacancy
Cultural Council - 13 vacancies
Fence Viewer and Field Driver - 1 vacancy
Library Trustee - 1 vacancy
Open Space Preservation Appraisal and Survey Revolving Fund Advisory Committee - 1 vacancy
Zoning Board of Appeals - 2 alternate member vacancies

If you'd like more information about any of these positions or are interested in being considered for an appointment, contact the Town Manager's office at 978-297-0085, or send a letter to Town Manager, 109 Front Street Dept. 1, Winchendon MA 01475.

Complete description of each committee's responsibilities, updated for May 10, 2021 (PDF).

Applications Available for Senior Tax Work-off Program

The Senior Work-Off Abatement Program is a program allowing the Town of Winchendon the opportunity to utilize the knowledge and skills of its senior residents in exchange for credit toward the resident's property tax bill. The purpose of this program is:

  • To employ qualified senior citizens who will apply their earnings toward payment of a portion of their property taxes;
  • To increase senior citizen involvement in local government; and
  • To enhance municipal service by using the skills of resident senior citizens.
Qualified and income-eligible residents will accrue the Commonwealth's minimum wage per hour ($13.50/hr) toward a maximum credit of $1,100.00 per household during the fiscal year. The criteria for this program is:
  • You must be 60 years old or older
  • Homeowner in Winchendon and occupy property
  • Annual income below $40,150 if single; or below $45,900 if married.
Applications for the program are now available in the Town Manager's office or on the town website, and will be accepted until the eight slots are filled. There are different types of positions that are available depending on the preference and qualifications of the resident and the needs of each department. Types of past and current positions have been: Custodial services, clerical help for both School & Town, library aides, Senior Center aides, cable station operator, Bike Path clean up, painting, light outdoor work and classroom volunteers. Click here for more information and a downloadable application.

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