Weekly Town Manager Newsletter
Ashland Residents and Friends

I hope all of you had a good week as the days have grown longer and as the temperatures continue to get warmer. These changes along with a loosening of restrictions and more people getting vaccinated have led to a lot more activity outside which everyone is happy to see.

As of today, 23% of Ashland's total population have received at least their first vaccination shot, and 56% of those 65+ have received their first shot. Through the efforts of many, Massachusetts is slowly starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Governor Baker's announcement this week that everyone will be eligible for vaccination on April 19 should also lend hope to those ready to enjoy life and visit family and friends.

There has been plenty of construction activity happening this past week. We continue to work on the Pond Street project, and this week we broke ground for our new public safety building. Downtown is slated to start later in the month with staging materials and the Mindess School will happen later in the year. I encourage everyone to sign up for these construction updates so we can help keep you informed of the impacts on your neighborhood.

Finally, please make sure you review the "shout outs" section of the newsletter as we have some very encouraging announcements about some of our key staff.

Spring is always a good time of year to turn the page to sunnier and happier times. As we transition out of the societal and economic impacts of the worst pandemic in a century, hopefully we can think of this time of year in that same light.


Michael Herbert
Town Manager

Latest COVID-19 Vaccination Information
State of MA COVID-19 Vaccine Information

People 65 and older, low-income and affordable senior housing residents and staff, people with 2+ certain medical conditions are also eligible for the vaccine as the State of Massachusetts enters Phase 2 Group 2. Individuals in Phase 1 and Phase 2 Group 1 are still eligible for the vaccine and can make appointments at any time.

Beginning March 11, Teachers and K-12 teachers, daycare, preschool workers and staff are eligible to make vaccination appointments at Massachusetts locations. Read more

Eligible for the vaccine- Find a location, book your appointment, and fill out your attestation form HERE. Appointments are based on the number of vaccines at the given location. At the state vaccination sites, appointment slots will be posted on Thursdays for the following week. For the smaller locations, check the websites frequently for appointment availability.
Click flyer above for the clickable PDF document
Latest COVID-19 Announcement from DPH


Please note that individuals who had COVID-19 in the last 90 days (from day of symptom onset or day of the first positive test if asymptomatic), AND individuals who have received either two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines or a single dose of the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine, at least 14 days ago but less than 90 days ago, are not required to quarantine following exposure. 

Local Cases in Ashland
The following information as of March 18, 2021

Ashland has 1,340 positive confirmed cases for COVID-19 with 1,306 cleared cases, 188 probable cases, and 185 cleared probable cases. 

Click the graphs to view them larger
Stop the Spread! Get Tested for COVID-19

If you display symptoms for COVID-19, or have been in close contact with an individual that tested positive.

Serology, PCR tests, and Antigen tests are also available.

Local Information
Ashland Public Schools Seeks Community Input on Communication Practices

The district aims to determine where it is succeeding, where improvements can be made related to communication

Residents of the Ashland Public Schools are invited to provide their thoughts and feedback on how the district can better communicate with the public through a community survey.

The survey, which will be open March 16 through April 4, asks a series of questions about residents’ perspectives on the school district, where they get district-related news and information, and the ways in which the district can improve in the area of communication.

“As we work to continuously improve as a school district, we look to find new and more effective
ways to keep our families, staff, students, and community members informed of all that’s
happening in our schools,” said James Adams, APS Superintendent. “Through this survey, we
aim to get a better sense of what is going well and where we need to improve related to our
communication practices. We invite our community members to take the survey and provide us with input and feedback as we continue this important planning process.”

The survey asks participants to share where they get news about the school district. It also asks
if residents feel they get the information they need on a regular basis and the types of updates
they would like to receive from the Ashland Public Schools.

All district residents are invited to participate in this survey. Individual responses will remain
confidential and the estimated time required to complete the survey is about 8-10 minutes.

The survey is available online at www.AshlandSurvey.org. It can be taken in English, Arabic, Hindi, Portuguese, or Spanish.
A new season of pop-up shops and events coming soon!

We are making it official...the calendar for the 2021 season is drafted, now we need to fill in the blanks! The #bestspotintown will open again this spring, summer and fall and we couldn't be happier! We believe we can create a fun gathering place that is safe for all. If you know someone that wants to pop up, or maybe you have started your own home business during the pandemic and want people to see what you have come up! Sign up for a week or a weekend! Email Beth at breynolds@ashlandmass.com to check availability!
Public Safety Building Site Work Began March 16th

Over the next several weeks, as 12-15 Union Street begins to look like a construction site, the Building Committee is planning an official groundbreaking ceremony. The Public Safety Building groundbreaking represents our shared commitment to safeguard Ashland residents, protect life & property, enhance our community's quality of life, attain our sustainability goals and provide a safe and productive working environment for our Public Safety professionals.

As we work on updating our Public Safety Building Project website, please visit the Public Safety Building Project Facebook Page here. Please send your questions and comments to the Public Safety Building Committee: psbcommittee@ashlandmass.com
Construction Updates- 126/ Pond Street Project
Between March 22nd- 26th

In addition to contractors continuing activity on Algonquin trail, Eversource begins gas installation at the intersection of Pond Street and Eliot Street. This activity will continue toward Nickerson Road.
Stay Updated with Construction Updates
We will share project updates on The 126/ Pond Street Revitalization Project and the Downtown Construction on the Town of Ashland website, ashlandmass.com, in our newsletters, and through our social media channels- Facebook and Instagram @TownofAshlandMA, Twitter @ashlandmass. To sign up for direct emails about the construction work sign up for newsletters at the link below.

Visit the DPW Webpage to stay updated with daily construction updates to both projects.
Deadline Reminders!

Motor Vehicle Excise Tax bill due Monday, March 29th
If you did not receive a bill by mail, please call the Treasurer's Office, 508-881-0100 ext. 7904, with your license plate's number.

2021 Annual Town Election Nomination Papers Due by Tuesday, March 30th.
If you are interested in any of the seats available, please contact the Town Clerk's Office to set up an appointment to collect the appropriate paperwork and to drop them off.
Visit Town Clerk Website for more information.
Upcoming Meetings & Events
Visit the Town of Ashland Website Calendar for committee meetings and agendas

Visit the Town of Ashland Event Calendar for upcoming events
Ashland is United Curious Community Discussion: Building Stronger Roots for Tough Times
Sunday March 21, 7:00-8:30 p.m.
Click here to register for our Zoom event

In line with our mission to build bridges where they don’t yet exist, we invite members of the Ashland community to participate in a virtual community discussion.

Following up on our successful storytelling evening 2 weeks ago, we now look to engage with each other on a deeper level. In a guided discussion, using the "Tree of Life" as a visual model, we will share our values, hopes, and inspirations. Together we will explore what we have in common and what others have to teach us about building lives of meaning, joy, and resilience.

You don't have to be an expert -- just looking to connect with other curious community members!
We hope to have a diverse group of individuals join together. Please help us spread the word
Metrowest Chamber of Commerce Trivia Night!
Open to All!
April 1st at 6 pm

Flex your knowledge and challenge your friends! Attend trivia night for a chance to win $100 for first place, $50 for second place, and $25 for third place! There are sponsorship opportunities available for this event as well, and they will benefit the Ashland Business Association Scholarship Fund!

If you'd like to sign up for the event visit HERE! $10 per person.
Green Up Ashland Announces:
Green Up day! Saturday, May 1st & Sunday, May 2nd
Registration opens on April 15th!!

Join Green Up Ashland's annual town-wide clean-up event on their website- www.greenupashland.org between April 115th and 29th.

Stay tuned for more information about bag pickup!

Green Up Ashland also has an Adopt-a-Street program to keep our streets clean May through October. 2020 adopters and new adopters, if you have a favorite location in town that you like to maintain over the spring, summer and fall season - signup opens 4/1 to 4/12 online here.
Shout outs!
Congratulations Sgt. Burman!

The Board of Health recognized Sergeant Ed Burman on March 16th as the recipient of the annual Mary Mortensen Recognition Award for 2021.

Over the past year, Sgt. Burman has spent countless hours helping the Town create and implement plans to ensure compliance with the ever-changing COVID-19 guidelines. This included providing plans, continuity of services, outreach, and education to business owners and restaurants so they can maintain COVID-19 compliance. In addition, Sgt. Burman continued providing guidance and information to the schools so they could create a safe environment for students.

Throughout the pandemic, Sgt. Burman obtained necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontline workers, built internal testing capacity for staff and teachers, and oversaw town-wide contact tracing efforts. Sgt. Burman monitored local and state trends and helped communicate new guidelines and protocols as information became available from the Department of Public Health and the Center for Disease Control. He also helped ensure that the Town was able to safely execute three Town Meetings and several elections. Most importantly, Sgt. Burman continues to tirelessly advocate for local and regional vaccine distribution.  
Happy Retirement David Foster!

Congratulations Dave on your retirement! Dave has tirelessly worked behind the scenes of operations at all the municipal buildings and all of the town-sponsored events for many years. He's been the go-to guy for just about everything. Dave also spent his time serving on the Planning Board and most recently, the Valentine Estate Committee. Dave, we will surely miss your expertise and sense of humor. Thank you for your years of contribution to our town. You've been a great asset to our community!
Thank you to everyone at Wednesday's Clinic!

The Town of Ashland vaccinated over 100 people at this week's pop-up vaccination clinic at the Community Center using a small supply of Moderna Vaccines from the State. Thank you to the Board of Health and Sgt. Burgman for relentlessly advocating for local distribution sites and for coordinating the operations. Thank you to Lowell Housing Authority. Thank you to the Community Center Staff and the Fire Department Staff for all your help hosting and running the clinic!
Ashland Community Center receives donations!

Ashland Community Center donation from Shaw’s
The Ashland Community Center received a $9,700.00 donation from the Nourishing Neighbors Shaw’s and Star Market Foundation. The funds are from the Holiday fundraiser, part of Shaw’s and Star Market’s Nourishing Neighbors Community Relief Initiative. Director of Human Services, Jennifer Wuelfing, and Food Pantry Coordinator, Meredith Madison are looking forward to using this generous donation to help combat food insecurity in our community. The Town of Ashland and the Ashland Community Center thank Shaw’s and Star Market for their support during this very challenging time!
Ashland Community Center donation from Upswing Farms
Early this spring, The Ashland Community Center graciously received two CSA shares for the upcoming season at Upswing Farm in Franklin and Pepperell. A thoughtful community member donated one share, and Upswing Farm matched the donation! “We are overjoyed at this opportunity to provide fresh produce from our Food Pantry,” says director of Human Services Jennifer Wuelfing. Upswing farm has been a staple at the Ashland Farmers market and we look forward to having them back each year. Upswing has proven to be a wonderful community partner with Ashland!
Local Business Information
Deals and Steals!
New Deals Available!

Here's the deal. We've asked local businesses to send us their deals and steals to help you shop away at your favorite local shops and dine at some truly great restaurants. Every two weeks, there will be new deals to snatch up but only while they last!  

Right now grab deals from Abbey Carpet and Floor,

Visit the webpage and start shopping here
Shop Local Ashland!

Don't forget to support our Ashland businesses! This pandemic is making it so difficult for our favorite places to stay open and provide with goods and food we love to have in our own backyard. If you are a regular diner or if you want to treat yourself to dinner out this week, please choose Ashland! Our restaurants and business owners need your help- pick up your favorite meal or family-style dinners to go, purchase gift cards, and leave positive reviews on social media. During these difficult times, think ASHLAND! Support all of the business owners who have supported our community groups throughout the years.

Click below for a quick list of shopping and dining options!
Updates from Economic Development
The Economic Development Department put together resources to help business owners establish a location in Ashland, maintain their business, and help reopen their establishment in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

To see a full list of possible grants and loans available to you visit the Economic Development Page of the town website:

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