Gardner Magazine has served Gardner Massachusetts and 18 surrounding communities since 2000


News and Interesting Information from Around Greater Gardner and Beyond

News Around Greater Gardner MA

  • Mayor’s Update July 1, 2022

    Update is about 11 minutes long, but worth every minute of it if you are a Gardner taxpayer. Please take the time to watch it. You’ll be glad you did.

    Tax Bills Focus of Gardner MA Michael Nicholson Update

    Mayor Nicholson mentioned recent grants and various events, but focused on explaining upcoming real estate tax bills, which will be higher than expected for the first two quarters, but commensurately lower for the last two quarters. This is an important update for all taxpayers to watch so we’re making it available to you right here.  Just click play at left.

  • Storefront Revitalization

    State Approves Gardner MA Application for Storefront Revitalization Districts

    In an announcement dated June 30, 2022 but sent out on the first day of the new fiscal year, Mayor Nicholson announced that the Chair City has been approved for two new Vacant Storefront Revitalization Districts, covering both the Timpany Boulevard Corridor and another which covers the majority of the City’s Downtown. Complete Press Release in pdf form. CLICK HERE.

    An Avalanche of Government and Community Leaders Respond Positively

    Mayor Nicholson, “…these programs just continue to make Gardner a more marketable place to do business.” State Rep. Jonathan Zlotnik, “…this program will help further revitalize two important commercial areas.” State Senator Anne Gobi, “The City of Gardner continues to put out the welcome mat to new businesses….” Jonathan Bombaci of Candor Realty, ” We have a number of businesses interested in coming into the downtown and this program will help them with the fit-out costs which are necessary for them to be successful…” Patti Bergstrom of Gardner Square Two, “….This program should go a long way toward helping….” Amy Fantoni, owner of Timpany Crossroads, “…We are excited to grow with the city….” Gardner City Council President Elizabeth Kazinskas, “….The program both compliments and encourages growth in our city moving forward.” Congresswoman Lori Trahan, “…I applaud Mayor Nicholson for his commitment to making Gardner an even better place to live, work, and do business.” Mayor Nicholson, “…the fact that we were able to get both applications approved is quite an accomplishment for the City.” Read all the comments in the Press Release.

    Program applies to all storefronts that have been vacant for a period of 12 months or more. There’s a total of 42 eligible locations. For all the complete comments, please read the Press Release.

    Vacant Storefront Districts

    The Two Vacant Storefront Districts Recently Approved for Funding by the State.


  • Downtown Progress
    Main Street Gardner MA
    Construction Materials Arrive as Downtown Gardner Revives

    Gardner Square Two Recognizes Downtown Gardner MA Progress

    Gardner Square Two Inc. posted some photos of progress happening right before our eyes in Downtown Gardner stating in a Facebook post, “Wow! There is so much happening in our Downtown. And we are very excited about all the revitalization going on. Temporary inconveniences for an amazing future. YES!”

    From Gardner Square Two Inc.”Our success is instrumental in returning the Downtown to an economically vital business, cultural, and residential district.  Square Two’s goal is to provide Gardner’s (Gardner MA) citizens with a safe, accessible, and diverse resource that will further enhance economic development.”

    Gardner Magazine loves to showcase positivity.  Email

    Gardner Magazine created a page called “Share the Chair” to profile Downtown Gardner Businesses. There’s even a 9 minute reenactment of positive reviews. For the page, CLICK HERE. We will be continuing to chronicle more of Gardner’s successes as they occur.

    For those inclined to open a business in Gardner and don’t know where to start, visit our page, City of Gardner Business Wish List for some ideas and also this page: Open Business in Gardner.

    If you see something we should cover, please email Thank you.

  • Happy 4th

    Americans Celebrate 4th of July in Greater Gardner MA

    Gardner City Hall, municipal offices of other communities will be closed, and Post Offices nationwide will be closed. The holiday is formally Independence Day, commemorating the Declaration of Independence of July 4, 1776. Gardner had its celebration early on Saturday June 25, 2022 with Fireworks at Kendal Pond to coincide with the Chair City’s 237th Birthday.

    In 1781, it was the Massachusetts General Court which became the first state legislature to recognize July 4 as a state celebration, 4 years before Gardner’s incorporation in 1785

    Here is a transcript of the text of the Declaration of Independence from the National Archives.. CLICK HERE.

  • Preliminary Tax Bills
    Gardner MA Real Estate Taxes

    Gardner Property Taxes: First two quarterly bills higher, second two quarterly bills lower. Mayor Nicholson explains.

    Due to a slight conflict in the way the laws regarding municipal taxation are set up, Gardner property owners will get the first two quarterly real estate tax bills based both on the $18.59/thousand tax rate set by City Council AND the new higher property valuations. Therefore, the first two quarterly bills will be higher than expected (7/22 and 10/22), but as the tax rate is lowered by the City Council to adjust for the higher values (once new growth and free cash are certified around November/December), the next two quarterly bills (1/23 and 4/23) will be much lower than expected.

    Tax for the year will be the correct total and residents will not pay more in total than expected. As the Mayor stated, “In the end, the amount collected is still capped at the same amount.” Mayor’s full Press Release is attached for your convenience and has an example which gives a clear explanation.. CLICK HERE


  • Food Truck Festival

    Printable poster PDF format CLICK HERE

    Printable poster jpg format CLICK HERE

    Gardner MA 5th Annual Food Truck Festival on Saturday, July 9, 2022 Brings 2 Dozen Choices

    Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, about 10 more food trucks than last year will be coming to the Gardner Food Truck Festival on Saturday July 9, 2022 from 1:00pm to 8:30pm.  The cuisine will be fabulous and the beverages will be flowing.  And the band, Boothill Express will be performing on the front steps of Gardner City Hall.

    Here’s a listing of the confirmed Food Trucks: Travelin’ Bones, The Grub Guru, Smokin Food Truck 51,Uncle E’s BBQ Express, Nom Nom Hut LLC, Wacky Candy Shack, Sun Kim Bop, Minuteman Kettle Corn, Inc., Sabor Latino, Pops Sweet Harts Ice Cream Truck, Kona Ice of Shrewsbury, Moe’s Sweet Eats, Grill Daddy, The Dogfather, Jackson Effie Coffee Cabin, Say Cheese!, Potato Potato, Boston Coffee Rescue Corp, Birds Nest Italian Street Food, Shishkaberrys of New England, Trolley Dogs, Shane’s Hot Dogs, and TU ANTOJO BORICUS.

    The trucks will be parked along the front of City Hall on Pleasant Street and will continue along City Hall Avenue. Bring a great appetite!

  • Community Health

    Community Health Connections new building closer to completion

    The sign states an opening date in December 2022 and construction progress to date puts the project right on track. Gardner Magazine was granted access to take these photos on June 28, 2022 of a great facility in the making. The construction foreman told us, “Just wait another 2 weeks and see what we have done.”

    Community Health Connections currently has a facility on Connors Street in Gardner. This building will add additional service capabilities. Here’s a link to their website.

  • Genuine Gardner
    Genuine Gardner

    Genuine Gardner Showcases Gardner MA Positivity

    What do you spot in Gardner that makes you smile or makes you feel good? It’s easy to find fault, it’s harder to find good.

    Gardner Magazine wants to profile even the quirkiest good things in the community. This could be about people, businesses, projects, your church…. the sky’s the limit! Email your ideas to You may include photos and a description of the good you see and we’ll make every effort to publish your submission. CLICK on any image for larger view.

    New England Wooden Ware trailers

    New England Wooden Ware, now known as NEWW Packaging & Display has tons of trailers and is celebrating 185 years in business. Looks like it’s “Blue Skies Ahead”.


    NEWW website states,”A Traditional Company with Modern Capabilities.” CLICK HERE.

    We noticed National Lumber has a beautiful sign showcasing “Kitchen Views“, a Cabinetry Design Showroom. And, they have spiffed up the outside look of the store.

    Heywood Healthcare is showing their pride in the Grade A they got in Patient Safety by utilizing a huge billboard.

    Could this be a great location for your business?

    The Old D’Angelos building used to only be for rent. Now you can buy it and fulfill your dreams. Seems like there’s plenty of parking for many types of businesses.

    The Shell Car Wash is celebrating 10 years. Congratulations!

    Taylor Rental Items Gardner MA

    We noticed Taylor Rental has a wide assortment of items to rent for those fun projects around your house.

    Taylor Rental Gardner MA
    Mart Stop South Gardner MA

    The Mart Stop in South Gardner in front of Gardner Academy looks great.

    Gardner Academy Gardner MA
  • The Bear
    Bear on Century Way

    Bear Spotted on Century Way in Gardner MA

    According to a social media post by a Gardner resident, “This big guy just came through the woods behind my fenced in backyard, walked across Century Way, past the brook and headed toward Brookside. Be careful.”

    Some other resources in printable pdf format: Prevent Negative Encounters with Bears — Coexisting with black bears — Living with black bears fact sheet —- If you need to reach Gardner MA Animal Control, here is the page. CLICK HERE.

  • Bike Trail Money
    Mass Trails Grant
    Gardner Mayor Mike Nicholson and Assistant Director of Community Development and Planning Lyndsy Butler stand with Lt. Governor Karyn Polito and the other recipients of the Mass Trails Grant Awards in Milton at the official award ceremony. (Photo by Zack Lawrence, Mayor’s Intern)

    Gardner MA Awarded $200,000 more Bike Trail Design Funds

    “I’m very excited to see this project moving forward thanks to the grant funding we have received,” said Mayor Michael Nicholson. “This project has been something we have talked about for quite some time in Gardner, and this funding allows us to get it off the ground and brings this proposal one step closer to reality.” View entire Press Release

  • Holdin’ Back
    Holdin' Back Band
    Holdin’ Back Band

    Monument Park Concerts are held on Saturdays through the end of August. Schedule: CLICK HERE.

    Holdin’ Back to play at Monument Park this Saturday July 2, 2022

    Coming up this Saturday July 2, 2022 at 6pm is Holdin’ Back for a “feel good” performance to include rock ‘n’ roll, oldies, patriotic, and pop, featuring classically trained vocalist Emma Riffelmacher . Band website.   Here is the Monument Park Concert Schedule for 2022, CLICK HERE.

    From the band’s website, “Holdin’ Back was created specifically as a Bandstand Band in 2013 by seasoned Worcester County Musicians Craig Smith (bass, keys) and Paul “Blakey” Blaquiere (guitar, uke, vocals) to feature “Crowd pleasing” music for all audiences.  In 2016, they were joined by vocalist Emma Riffelmacher and drummer Joe Ostrenga. “

  • John Philip Sousa Concert
    John Philip Sousa Band
    The Band poses with Gardner Mayor Michael Nicholson
    John Philip Sousa Band
    John Philip Sousa Band in Gardner June 27, 2022
    audience at Monument Park, Gardner MA
    The performance was well-attended.
    Historic Marker

    National High School Honor Band performed at Monument Park in Gardner MA

    The John Philip Sousa National High School Honor Band performed at Monument Park in Gardner on June 27, 2022.  The outdoor event was possible as the rain which fell across the region earlier in the day gave way to sunshine.  The well-attended event included those who wanted to see musicians Oliva Charette on clarinet and Emily Shouse on tuba from Gardner, Alma White on Trombone from Athol, Tiana Graessle on Bass Clarinet from Winchendon, Brianna Nunez on Bass Clarinet from Templeton, Dylan Wornham on Alto Saxophone from Athol, Declan Leclair on French Horn from Westminster.  Other musicians were from all over the United States.

    Historical Marker Presented

    Gardner MA Mayor Michael Nicholson was presented an historical marker documenting the John Philip Sousa concerts conducted in Gardner in 1898, 1899, and 1912.    The Band played an inspiring selection of music including Patriotic favorites.   The band plans a concert at the Athol Town Hall at 5pm on June 28, 2022 and at Mechanics Hall in Worcester from 7 to 9pm on June 29, 2022 before heading out from Logan Airport on Thursday.  Schedule and Website:

    About John Philip Sousa Foundation

    From the website, “The John Philip Sousa Foundation is a non-profit foundation dedicated to the promotion of international understanding through the medium of band music. Through the administration of band related projects, the foundation seeks to uphold the standards and ideals of that icon of the American spirit, John Philip Sousa.”

    Coming Up at Monument Park

    Concerts are usually on Saturdays at Monument Park. Coming up this Saturday July 2, 2022 is Holdin’ Back for a “feel good” performance to include rock ‘n’ roll, oldies, patriotic, and pop, featuring classically trained vocalist Emma Riffelmacher . Band website.   Here is the Monument Park Concert Schedule for 2022, CLICK HERE.

  • Gardner Plan
    Age of Gardner MA Buildings identified in 2011
    Gardner MA Project Areas
    Gardner MA Police Station
    Gardner MA Police Station
    Heywood Hospital
    Heywood Hospital Gardner MA
    Future Maki Park
    Future Maki Park on Parker Street, Gardner MA

    Gardner MA City Centennial marks halfway point in Urban Renewal

    Often Social Media posts reflect the impatience of Gardner residents. Whether it’s paving, rundown buildings, or desired improvements, the comments are numerous.   So Gardner Magazine thought it would be a great time to remind our readers that there is a 25 year plan.   Over a decade ago, in 2011, a 143 page Urban Renewal Plan for Gardner Massachusetts was published.   In the background section it stated, “Gardner is poised to promote revitalization opportunities within a significant portion of the Downtown area, including areas of commercial/retail, office, residential, manufacturing, and public space land uses.”    It went on to describe the past history of Gardner including the steady decline of the Downtown area after the 1950s, the decline of furniture manufacturing, and Gardner’s slow growth rate compared to the rest of the region, including population.   Fast forward to 2022:  Significant progress has been made in revitalization of Downtown Gardner with various projects underway.   Manufacturing is coming back to Gardner with some significant success stories.  A number of businesses have come to the Chair City in the past couple of years, even with the challenges of the pandemic.  The population of Gardner is the highest in its history.

    Gardner Challenges Were Identified

    The plan identified various challenges including, “88 percent of the structures predating World War II” and “approximately 39 percent of the properties with buildings in the URA were found to be in moderate or severe disrepair.”   A significant number of successes have already been documented, but in short, progress takes time. The National Grid substation on Park Street was identified as something to redevelop as recreational open green space.  This was recently approved by the Gardner City Council with an appropriation of $260,000 from free cash.  It was also desired to upgrade the Greenwood Memorial Bath House.  However, since that time, the huge cost involved has precluded progress on that front and various other plans have been discussed with nothing finalized as of yet.  Redevelopment of the Goodnow-Pearson Building was identified as a goal and was completed.  Redevelopment of the Maki Building was identified, however, the building was instead torn down and will soon be Maki Park as $180,000 was recently approved by the City Council.  A park has replaced the former theater on Parker Street.  Rear Main Street was specifically mentioned and now a huge project is in the works.  The plan was to construct a new Police Station and Gardner has a beautiful building today.  The goal of redeveloping Heywood Wakefield III and IV into residential and assisted living was achieved.

    Goals and Successes

    One of the goals of the URP is to ““set forth a series of public improvements that together with private investment will transform Gardner into a thriving 21st century City.”   Just look at the 99 Restaurant and surrounding buildings, the new Health Center being constructed near Walmart, and the various construction projects either completed or currently underway at Heywood Hospital.   Various buildings in Downtown Gardner have recently changed hands with plans for renovation into modern structures with some renovation currently underway. Manufacturing employers in Gardner are thriving and are hiring.  The Urban Renewal Plan contains various maps, charts, and property lists.  If all of the goals in the 25  year plan are achieved, the results for Gardner will be truly transformative.  In any case, there can be no dispute – Gardner MA is on a positive, upward trajectory.   Read the 2011 plan for yourself.  Here’s the pdf.

  • Gardner Elementary

    Mayor Nicholson on why it was canceled. “Due to a scheduling conflict with the main contractor, who still has site control of the location, the contractor asked that the public meeting/tour be postponed due to wanting to make sure they were 1) available to attend and 2) were able to ensure full cooperation with the required OSHA safety protocols of closed toe shoes and hardhats since it is still an active construction zone.”

    New Gardner Elementary School On Track – However, June 27, 2022 Public Tour Canceled

    A special meeting of the Gardner School Committee scheduled for 4pm on June 27, 2022 at which members of the public would have been able to tour the new Gardner Elementary School has been canceled. No word if it will be rescheduled for a later date.

    The notice of meeting canceled was posted on the School Committee website on Friday around noon. The media was not notified of this change and we have inquired why.

    Previously it was announced that only wearing a Hard hat and signing a waiver would get you in. The Gardner School Committee meeting was to be convened for that purpose and the Gardner City Council had planned to attend. In the meantime, our photos show the substantial progress being made on the new facility which is scheduled to be “substantially completed” by July 15th.

    Gardner MA new school just a few short weeks away from substantial completion.

    Construction continues at a brisk pace at the site of the new Gardner Elementary School.

    GES Connector
  • Gardner Celebrates
    Superheroes Gardner MA June 25, 2022
    Superheroes in Downtown Gardner
    shopping Downtown Gardner MA
    Finding just the perfect item

    More Event Photos, CLICK HERE.

    Gardner MA Residents and Visitors Share FUN on Gardner’s Birthday Saturday June 25, 2022.

    It was a super day in Gardner MA with perfect weather. The food was abundant throughout the Chair City. Smiles were to be found on many a face as residents and visitors enjoyed the FUN in Downtown Gardner and elsewhere in the City. The Greenwood Swim Club had Swim Meets. Retailers forgot about inflation and discounted prices to the delight of savvy shoppers. It was another Small Business Saturday in Downtown Gardner from 10am to 4pm with sales, demonstrations, performances, giveaways, games, and activities. It was FUN! The formal opening of Pleasant Plaza was held. Popular host Steve Wendell of WGAW did a LIVE Man-on-the-Street broadcast LISTEN to it. The Gardner PD set up a popular safety demonstration which simulated the effects of impaired driving. Monument Park and the Lithuanian Club had FREE concerts and FIREWORKS were enjoyed by hundreds at Kendall Pond. Gardner MA is a Great Place to Live, Work, Play, and Visit. View our complete list of June 25, 2022 events.

    Gardner Mayor Michael Nicholson and others get Dunked for Charity

    Money raised from the Dunk Tank will go to the CAC Food Pantry

    Pythons Played in Public

    Pythons on display
    Downtown Visitors played with pythons

    Downtown Stores Held Sales

    Sales in Downtown Gardner

    Popular Downtown Gardner Merchants such as the Velvet Goose and John’s Sport Shop delighted shoppers with merchandise specials. Attracted to Downtown were customers of all ages. People could be heard cheering at the time of the Fireworks Grand Finale.

    Fireworks Brought in Hundreds of People to the Chair City

    Fireworks Gardner MA
    Fireworks Gardner MA
    Fireworks Gardner MA
    Fireworks Gardner MA

    Fireworks were held at Kendall Pond about 9:30pm and lasted for about 15 minutes in celebration of Independence Day and Gardner’s 237th birthday.

    Downtown Gardner MA has been the recent subject of many positive announcements including upcoming building renovations and projects, new sidewalks, fresh paving, storefront grants, the just-approved new Maki Park to be across from the Gardner Ale House, and so many more ideas becoming reality. Today may have been the start of Downtown Gardner’s new found positive trajectory towards the future. More June 25, 2022 Photos, CLICK HERE.


  • Mayors Update 6-24-22
    Gardner MA Mayor Michael Nicholson

    View the Weekly Mayor’s Update on the City of Gardner’s Youtube page or on our Mayor’s Update page. CLICK HERE.

    Gardner Mayor Michael Nicholson focuses on Budget and various items approved by Gardner City Council and Paving Projects.

    Mayor Nicholson went over Budget items and spoke of paving projects coming up in the next week. (See color-coded map below). The Mayor highlighted events taking place on June 25, 2022, the start of Concerts at Monument Park, and mentioned the John Philip Sousa Band playing at Monument Park on Monday June 27th. The Mayor also had well wishes for retiring Gardner Police Chief Richard Braks. See article.

    Other upcoming items of note: The Summer Reading Kickoff is June 29th at the Levi Heywood Memorial Library. The Mayor also congratulated new Eagle Scout Brady Billings of Gardner, a new Eagle Scout.

    Paving Progress on Route 140 in Gardner MA – from Winchendon line to Green Street

    Paving Route 140 Gardner MA
    Paving Route 140
    Paving Route 140

    Food Truck Festival in 2 weeks

    The Gardner Food Truck Festival will be taking place on July 9th with about 2 dozen food trucks featuring an assortment of delights. View Article.

  • Just Dance Approved
    Rebecca Wilson after hearing 3 yes votes.
    Rebecca Wilson showing plans. Property owner Robert Ouelette is at left.

    Just Dance Owner Rebecca Wilson with a Big Smile as Special Permit is Approved for new location in Gardner MA

    The Gardner Zoning Board of Appeals on June 21, 2022 approved a SPECIAL PERMIT for 69 Lincoln Street, Gardner, which will soon house the new location of Just Dance Performing Arts Center. During the hearing, Rebecca Wilson presented letters of support from the Mayor, Council President, a City Councilor, and even former Mayor Hawke. There were 35 letters of support from abutters and interested people. The Special Permit details parking and changes to the building which will house 2 dance studios. The ZBA was satisfied with parking available not only on the property, but also nearby parking. After a round of questions and answering member questions to their satisfaction, approval was given. Gardner Magazine will inform you when we hear of the Grand Opening date.

  • Braks Retires

    A no confidence vote of 40 of 41 Police Department Employees earlier this year resulted in the immediate resignation of the Gardner Dispatch Director. The retirement of the Deputy Chief followed a couple months later. This latest announcement of the retirement of Chief Braks brings this chapter of the Gardner PD to a close.

    Once a new Chief receives a temporary appointment, the Mayor plans to post the Deputy Chief position.

    Chief Braks Retires from Gardner MA PD – Panel of Five to Convene

    Mayor Nicholson sent this email to the Gardner City Council around 3pm on June 22, 2022: “I am writing to inform you that Chief Richard Braks of the Gardner Police Department has decided to retire from the City after 23 years of service. I’d like to thank Chief Braks for his years of dedicated service to the Department and the City and wish him well on his retirement and next endeavors.”

    The Mayor has appointed a search committee of five to conduct the review and preliminary interview process for applicants for the position. This Panel of the Gardner Five will submit the top two or three candidates to Mayor Nicholson for a final interview. “This committee will be comprised of Human Resources Director Debra Pond, Retired Chief Vincent Alfano – who served as Gardner’s Acting Chief for a time, Chief Richard Briggs of the Ashland Police Department, Chief Ralph LeBlanc of the Westminster Police Department, and Director Michael Moriarty of the Rutland Regional Emergency Communications Center.” The Mayor intends to make a 60 day temporary appointment of the successful candidate before asking the Gardner City Council to approve a full 3 year term.

    Read the Mayor’s complete email to the City Council here.

  • City Council 6-21-22
    City Council informal session
    Gardner City Council June 21, 2022

    The Gardner City Council got everything done in one night, so the second night of meetings were able to be canceled. The regular meeting was an hour and half long. View the Gardner City Council meetings on the City of Gardner YouTube page or on our City Council page. CLICK HERE.

    Gardner MA City Council Gets It Done in One Night – Budget and Parks Approved.

    Council President Kazinskas.  “We are meeting informally tonight to discuss the City’s FY 23 Budget proposed by Mayor Nicholson.  As in years past, we will go page by page through the budget packet.”

    Review of Budget at Informal Meeting

    Since the budget was released to the City Council and the public, various committees have met with the Mayor to discuss various aspects of the budget. The Council went on to review the budget page by page and took a straw poll vote on various adjustments.    Based on the Council’s wishes and likely vote at the Regular meeting to take place later, the Mayor said the City Auditor would amend the money orders in time for the meeting.  This allowed the Gardner City Council to proceed with all matters before it in one night.

    Matters Approved at Regular June 21, 2022 Gardner City Council Meeting

    Tennis Courts Gardner MA

    City Getting New Tennis Courts

    $90,000 from fresh cash was approved for a “full redo of tennis courts at Gardner High School but not before enthusiastic comments from a few City Councilors.” Ronald Cormier, “These are the original tennis courts put in there nearly a half century ago….they are beyond just being filled… Judy Mack, “I really support this. For the last couple of years, the condition of the tennis courts has just gotten worse.” Alek Dernalowicz, “I’m in support of this….glad to see they’re getting fixed, hopefully we’ll get another 50 years out of them.” James Boone, “Councilor Dernalowicz’s grandfather was hugely instrumental in the recreation department and in fact promoted a gymnastics program that my father used to run. …I’m fully in support of it.”Mayor Nicholson, “This is the only public tennis court in the City…” Approval was unanimous. Another $15,000 was approved from free cash for the purchase of equipment for a disc golf course.

    a random online Cheerleading uniform

    Uniforms for Cheerleaders Narrowly passes

    There was considerable disagreement over $25,000 being spent from free cash on uniforms as Mayor Nicholson stated, “price covers cost of 8 varsity cheerleaders and 10 junior varsity cheerleaders.” While approved on a vote of 6 to 5, there were varied opinions. Judy Mack, “would like to see more up to date invoice estimate.”James Boone,“why free cash and not part of school budget.” James Walsh “I’m troubled by this one.”Judy Mack “motion to refer item back to finance committee,” George Tyros, “this is getting my vote.” And then he voted no.

    New Health Department Vehicle Explained

    Mayor Nicholson spoke. Price: $47,645, trade-in $7,000, $7,500 rebate, state rebate $1500, total cost $31,645 “least expensive vehicle the city has purchased in at least the past 5 years.” The Mayor stated the City would be waiting to receive the vehicle until at least September or October. Dana Heath commented, “rebate period runs out.  Don’t tell my fiancé because I missed out on my rebates. Just to make sure you cash in on those rebates within the time frame.”

    Net cost: $31,645.

    Centennial Celebration Expense Account Approved

    $100,000 was approved for the 100th anniversary celebration of Gardner as a City: 1923 to 2023. A nonpaid committee to be appointed by the Mayor.

    Maki Park Proposal Approved 8 to 3

    Approved was $180,000 from free cash to Maki Park expense account.   Mayor Nicholson explained that the “City purchased the property in 2016.  After building was torn down, purchased the land from the Gardner Redevelopment Authority on February 15, 2017. …  This is a property the City has tried to dispose of 3 separate times before, and has received no interest on it.  The biggest hurdle that we’ve received …is that per the state’s building code and our local zoning code, while the West Street parking lot is directly adjacent to the property, anything constructed on that property would have to have its own dedicated parking ….To terrace the current lot, design was approved by the City Council on August 2, 2021.  Since then the design has been completed, and the proposal that is before the Council is to do the work that is there.  It is being done in a way that the property can be sold if we do have an interested buyer.   It is still considered declared surplus.” Councilors had differing opinions on this item. Alek Dernalowicz “Finance committee favorable.” Nathan Boudreau, “a good step forward in our economic development and recreation that’s been going on in our city. “  Boudreau questioned why the City would ever sell the land again after spending 180 grand on it. James Boone, “I’m opposed to this.  Taking another property off the tax roll.” Alek Dernalowicz, “Just wanted to clarify.  With the parking requirements, the Ale House is an existing building and doesn’t need the requirement of those spots.  Building a new building there has the requirement of having spots on site.” Councilor Walsh “opposed to this money order…There are two prongs.   Merits and needs.  Financial part of it.”   Walsh spoke of what he stated was the need for the City to save money based on the inflation occurring.” Judy Mack ”agree with many of Councilor Walsh’s points.” …”There’s so much going on Downtown. I think we need to see what happens with those 34 storefronts. Let’s bring the businesses in.  Let’s give the Pleasant Street trial project a chance. I just think this is an incredible amount of money ….There are greater needs in the City.” George Tyros, “I do think it’s important to acknowledge the economic headwinds that we are currently facing., but I also very much view this as an investment in the future of Gardner.  Just because the storefronts aren’t filled yet, doesn’t mean they can’t be, doesn’t mean that businesses can’t be attracted by having these parks available. Could be an Ice Cream Shop, coffee shop, a bakery, we don’t know what that is yet.  It is a large investment, but these scaled projects to have the investment needed for that opportunity.  I think when you go to places like Hudson Massachusetts…that attract businesses.  It is something people talk about, having space.”  “I’d like to see ideas building on this, free public wifi for example.  I’ll be supporting this motion and the next motion.”

    Park Street Park Proposal Approved 7-4

    Approved was $268,000 from free cash to Park Street Park expense account.  Mayor Nicholson stated, “The restrictions put in place on the land that we conveyed as part of the land swap….“Parking lot would need to be permeable”  “No other use for the site… Can used for passive recreation as long as there is no digging….would take out eyesore of barbed wire fence.” Councilor Walsh, “There are parks in the immediate area.  I don’t know why we need a 45 spot parking lot on land that we don’t own.  …..Makes no sense, we’re going to need this money.” James Boone, “Concur with Councilor Walsh….I don’t get it either.  It’s taxpayer dollars…it makes no sense.” Dana Heath,”Just had a question… Is that parking going to alleviate…I didn’t know if anybody knew where they park when they have the big events” Mayor Nicholson, “When they have big events, we have reached out to the Commonwealth…to see if parking could be available at the skating rink, but that is something the state restricts due to their insurance, so unless we get specific permission from DCR, you can’t use the skating rink.”Judy Mack, “I just want to say that, 45 parking spots for a limited amount of meets at the pool.  … I just think $268,000 is a lot of money for parking spots for the swimming pool.  I know we have events at Monument Park, but this is a lot of money for land that we do not own.  We don’t even know how long the lease would be for…There’s so many needs out there….I’m against this order.” Craig Cormier “I do consider this an investment that I hope will continue the draw of new businesses into the area as well as reinvestment in the area like we’ve seen from Candor Realty. … I’m going to support this in hopes that we can continue the path that we’re on.” Nathan Boudreau, “I’d like to echo Councilor Craig Cormier in stating  that it is a positive investment, but I would like to point out that there would be possible funding options here.   Maybe we install one of those singular parking meters.  Maybe the Elks get involved.  We all know this is going to be a parking lot for large parties at the Elks, more than it’ll be for a lot of other things….I’ll be supporting this because I think it is a beautiful area, and will add to a beautiful area….” George Tyros, “I just have two points.  One was to an earlier comment about spending taxpayer dollars.  I think everyone on this Council does that with a great responsibility.  The second point I’d like to make is just provide a different perspective on this potential park.  I walk Crystal Lake Cemetery nearly every day.   I think it’s beautiful.  I was actually surprised one day to find 50 cars in the cemetery.  The Senior Class had decided to take prom pictures at Crystal Lake Cemetery Park because it was so beautiful. …Often every day there’s a minimum of 2-3 cars parked on the road on that Crystal Lake Drive going in. It is kind of tight to fit by.  I think this is a lot of money, but it will provide a lot of beauty to the area and might be able to leverage it greater for Monument Park events having this parking.  It will certainly be a safety alleviation for the area.  It pains me every time we have a city event at Monument Park to look over and see the barbed wire fence next to a very beautiful lake.  I’m  hoping this can be incorporated with some purpose in future projects like the North Central Pathway.  I’ll be supporting this.” James Boone, “Just another point for the second time.  At some point sadly we’re going to have to tear down the Greenwood Pool. I spent a lot of time there myself.  So we’re going to spend $268,000 on a parking lot and yet we’re going to have to tear down that pool…cause it’s just, the building’s falling apart.  I didn’t want to see that.  I donated to the fund to try and save it.  But again, I just think it’s foolish to spend that kind of money on a parking lot when we have bigger needs.” James Walsh, “For the second time, I don’t want to beat a dead horse.  This is an investment, an investment in somebody else’s land in a case where there’s a license that doesn’t exist, that we hope to have, maybe we’ll have…..  At best this is premature.” Nathan Boudreau asked a question of the Mayor, “Would it be possible to get some sort of Council vote approving your office to seek an agreement with National Grid,versus doing this money order upfront? ….putting the horse before the cart?” Mayor Nicholson, “As I said earlier, National Grid holds off on their lease agreement until the whole plan is in place. …Without the plan in place, they really don’t issue the license agreement.”

    Litter and Handbills Ordinance Approved for First Printing

    Litter and handbills added to City Ordinance – patterned after Fitchburg and Leominster, Craig Cormier, “ability to enforce some ordinances based on litter to help keep the city clean with all the investment we’re doing in trying to improve the Downtown and other areas.”

    City of Gardner Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Orders Approved with some cuts

    All approved unanimously were $23,168,101.03 out of $23,188.101.03 proposed for various departments, $13,546.060.04 out of 13,610.641.08 for the salary and labor budget. $27,819,676.29 for School Department. $9,958,735.62 out of $9,967,235.62 for available enterprise funds: sewer, water, golf, landfill closure, and solid waste.

    Scooters will be Coming

    The shareable dockless mobility devices ordinance was approved unanimously to go to the second and final printing – This would enable the scooters proposed by the Mayor.

    New Business

    Nathan Boudreau, “Thank Mayor Nicholson and his administration and all the Department heads for the professional handling of this  year’s City Budget….Also like to wish our Great city and our great country a very Happy Birthday.  Everyone that is heading out to the festivities this weekend whether it be the celebration in Downtown Gardner in the morning on Saturday or the Fireworks at the PACC on Kendall Pond in the evening, please be safe and celebrate accordingly.  Have a great summer.” James Walsh, “I have a question for the Chair.  Will you be canceling the notices meetings for tomorrow?” Council President Kazinskas stated “yes”


  • Seaman Paper

    From left to right in above photo: Mike Wright, Global Chief Operating Officer, Seaman Paper  —- Jo Pagnotta, Corporate Human Resources Director, Seaman Paper —- Dana Heath, Gardner City Councilor —- Jessica DeRoy, Gardner Economic Development Coordinator —- Michael Nicholson, Mayor, City of Gardner MA —- Zack Lawrence, Mayor’s Intern —- Glen Welsh, Plant Manager, Specialized, Seaman Paper —- Ryan Lichwell, Chief Administrative Officer, Seaman Paper —- Mike Gerry, Greater Gardner Chamber of Commerce Interim Executive Director —- Scott Percifull, North Central MassHire Career Center Business Services Representative —- Rob Anderson, MassDevelopment Vice President, Business Development —- Rebecca Beaton, North Central Mass Development Corporation Vice President of Lending —- Elizabeth Conner, Assistant Plant Manager, Specialized, Seaman Paper —- Trevor Beauregard, City of Gardner Community Development & Planning Director

    Successful Seaman Paper Toured in Gardner MA

    City and state officials recently took an in-depth tour of the 75,000 square foot Specialized Paper Converting Facility. According to Seaman Paper, it’s “an important part of Gardner’s manufacturing industry and Seaman Paper’s primary production plant for food service converted products. “I saw a lot of excitement in their faces for all of the amazing activity on the floor. I feel they appreciated what we were doing, the success of our business, and for providing great jobs for the greater Gardner area,” said Specialized Plant Manager Glen Welsh.

    Jessica DeRoy, Gardner Economic Development Coordinator said, “I am in awe of what you can do daily, and how all the machinery operates. Your sustainability packaging and plans are impressive. You told me ahead of time that you made the Super Bowl confetti and the Hershey Kiss plumes, but it was amazing to add the restaurant paper to the mix and be able to watch the process. As a consumer, I never really took the time to question where tissue paper and these other items come from, and I am so thankful for the opportunity to see the process.”

    The Seaman Paper Company has its Corporate Headquarters at 35 Wilkins Road in Gardner, Massachusetts.  The successful Chair City manufacturer has nearby locations in Gardner, Baldwinville, and Orange, MA.   What some don’t know is Seaman Paper is in Fujian, China, Hong Kong, Dongguan, China, Ho Chi Minh City Vietnam, Rastatt, Germany, and Carpi, Italy. Seaman Paper website.

    The City of Gardner is interested in showcasing its history of manufacturing success to other companies who might want to locate in the Chair City and also become successful around the globe.   Gardner is a City of Success and a great place to Live, Work, Play, and Visit.


  • Outdoor Dining

    Outdoor Dining Initiative Begins in Downtown Gardner MA

    The Street was closed at both ends. Signage went up. The planters are there and soon will showcase beautiful plants. Crews put up the lights. And tables started to hold customers enjoying outdoor eating. Official grand opening is during Gardner’s Birthday Celebration on June 25, 2022. Complete Article, CLICK HERE.

    Exterior 25 Main Street, Gardner MA and outdoor dining
    Outdoor Dining area also showing the newly spruced-up exterior of 25 Main Street, Gardner MA
    Putting up the lights
    Putting up the Lights in Downtown Gardner MA
    Outdoor Dining Gardner MA
    Lights on Pleasant Street, Gardner

    Lights are ON! Outdoor Dining has started!

    Mayor Nicholson released the photo at left and also stated, “Still more tables to be added, flowers to be planted on the barriers, flower beds from Aubuchon Hardware to be laid out throughout the area, and new trash cans from Masscor but the Pleasant Plaza Outdoor Seating Area is open! “

    “Thank you to Gilbert Gravel from the Gardner DPW for putting it all together today and Jon Bombaci of Candor Realty for letting us string the lights from their building! Already a few people out eating at the tables.”

  • 2 Meetings

    The Story of why Back to Back Gardner City Council Meetings are scheduled this week

    Mayor Nicholson stated on Social Media, “You’ll notice there’s identical informal meetings posted for both Tuesday and Wednesday and the budget also appears on the Tuesday night regular meeting. Every year when we do the budget the Council always posts duplicative meetings that way if they have questions after day 1, they can take the time and get answers and come back the next day. However if they feel all their questions are answered and they get it done in one day, the subsequent meetings are canceled.

    Since the open meeting law requires that public meetings be posted 48 hours in advance, they’re all pre scheduled for a worst case scenario.”

    See our Article on the upcoming Gardner City Council meetings with various agendas and supplemental material. CLICK HERE.

  • Juneteenth
    Juneteenth celebrated June 20, 2022
    “The Sentient Soul of American Freedom” – a Poem by Werner Poegel

    Juneteenth to be celebrated Monday, June 20, 2022 in Greater Gardner MA

    City Hall and Town Halls will be closed and U.S. mail will not be delivered. It is the first new federal holiday since Martin Luther King Jr. Day was adopted in 1983. The actual date of Juneteenth is June 19 and commemorates the emancipation of enslaved Black Americans. It became a Federal Holiday when the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act became law in 2021. More on Juneteenth, CLICK HERE.

    Original Poem “The Sentient Soul of American Freedom” CLICK HERE.

  • Pleasant Plaza

    Pleasant Plaza is Born in Downtown Gardner MA

    Monday, June 20, 2022 is the official date of birth which will be shown on the BIRTH CERTIFICATE for Pleasant Plaza on Pleasant Street, Gardner MA as the street is closed off after 5am and a new Outdoor Dining area is BORN. The idea was hatched by Gardner Business and Government leaders, gestated by the Mayor and City Council, born into reality by the efforts of many and named by the spontaneous utterances of local business people.

    The timing is perfect as Gardner celebrates its 237th Birthday on June 25th and hopes to draw thousands of people to the Chair City on that day to enjoy all that Gardner has to offer. Complete list of Events, CLICK HERE.

  • Goose Goodies

    The Velvet Goose has been a business in Downtown Gardner MA for over 3 decades and carries clothing, accessories, jewelry, and gifts. Visit their Facebook page.

    The Velvet Goose in Gardner MA Having Massive 6 hour sale on Saturday June, 25, 2022

    Patti Bergstrom announced on her store’s Facebook page: “Check out our SALE Racks. Discounts up to 90% off. $5, $10, $20 Deals. Enter to win Goose Goodies!” It was also posted, “Join us on Saturday, June 25! We are celebrating Small Business Saturday (because 1 Small Business Saturday in November is not enough) and we are celebrating Gardner’s 237th birthday.” For Gardner Magazine’s complete article on all of the day’s events, CLICK HERE.

    Inspiring Photo from the Velvet Goose on Facebook

    Patti Bergstrom, the President of Downtown organization Gardner Square Two has been a supporter of the Chair City and Downtown and recently stated this at a Grant Event in April 22: “It is a beautiful day in the neighborhood, made more beautiful by Congresswoman Trahan coming with all this grant funding.”   … “We have so much positivity in Downtown, it is just a beautiful day every day in our Downtown.” Some would say that Patti herself has brought just a little more Sunshine to Gardner all these years, just like the sunflower she posted on her own page.

  • Witches’ Wardrobe

    Bringing the Magic of local artisans to Downtown Gardner MA with the new store, the Witches’ Wardrobe

    Kate Saab has brought some magic to Downtown Gardner with the Witches’ Wardrobe at 314 Central Street, Gardner as she has given a place for local artists to showcase their handmade items such as jewelry, stained glass mobiles, silk paintings, bath & beauty products, and candles.

    Kate is enthusiastic about the Sidewalk Sale event taking place on Saturday June 25, 2022 in Downtown Gardner. hosting a Witch Dance group and featuring a hula hoop station for kids to play with. The store will have deeply discounted clothing and other items on sale.

    The Witches Wardrobe hosts workshops and has a Tarot Reading room by appointment. Website —- Facebook page.

    When you’re in Downtown Gardner MA, plan a visit to the Witches’ Wardrobe for a unique shopping experience in the Chair City!

  • Council Busy
    The Gardner City Council will be working on the budget this week in four different meetings.

    While any discussions of budgets can conjure up visions of the “Fat Budget Man”, Gardner residents should know that Mayor Nicholson’s proposed budget has the lowest proposed increase of comparable cities. See our article.

    Gardner MA City Council Facing Busy Week – Focus on Budget Fiscal Year 2023

    The Gardner Massachusetts City Council is taking Monday off this week due to the Juneteenth Holiday. Then, it’s WORK and more WORK Tuesday and Wednesday with Informal and Regular Meetings. You can view the various City Council Agendas and packets. 6-21 Informal, 6-21 Regular, 6-22 Informal, 6-22 Regular.

    In addition, Mayor Nicholson submitted additional information on Friday evening regarding Maki Park, Park Street Park, Disc Golf, Tennis Courts Part 1, and Tennis Courts Part 2.

    With respect to Maki Park and Park Street Park, the Mayor’s submissions intend to demonstrate that City Council approval of both would be consistent with the City Council’s past actions relating to both proposed expenditures.

    Gardner Magazine had a previous article on the City of Gardner Fiscal Year 2023, demonstrating its efficiency compared to other communities. CLICK HERE.

  • Dinner on Us

    Gardner MA CAC to help struggling families with “Dinner’s on Us!” Program

    The Dinner’s On Us! Program offers eligible applicants healthy, ready-to-cook fresh and frozen crockpot dinners. Meals prepared at the CAC kitchen are delivered to each registered, approved household once per week. Communities served include Ashburnham, Gardner, Hubbardston, and Westminster. More Details and application, CLICK HERE.

    The Gardner CAC’s Mission is to provide services and resources to those in need. Donations are accepted. For secure paypal link, CLICK HERE.

  • More Paving
    Positive Paving Postulations Possible

    Positive Paving Postulations Possible in Gardner MA

    More paving means more roads will be looking better in Gardner. Gardner Mayor Michael Nicholson is advising residents of plans for Tuesday June 21 through 24 in a “Traffic Advisory” so people can “plan for traffic delays or seek alternate route.”

    Route 140 Winchendon Line to Green Street

    Nicholson states, “MassDOT Rt. 140 paving will begin Tuesday June 21st through Friday June 24th. Paving will occur form the Winchendon town line to Green St. in Gardner. Traffic will be reduced to an alternating single travel lane for large portions of the roadway.”

    Pearson Boulevard, Gardner

    MassDOT will also be resuming work on Pearson Blvd shortly following a recent pause in the work caused by granite curbing supply issues.

    Other Gardner MA Street Work

    Mayor Nicholson stated, “Gardner crews will also be raising structures on Parker St., West St., Central St., West Lynde St., and Woodland Ave. and will be installing crossing ramps at the intersections of Oak and West Street and along Woodland Ave by Heywood Hospital.”


  • Radio 6-17-22

    We have a new newscast for you with 10 different stories, just like you hear them on the RADIO.


  • Square Two

    Gardner Square Two says June 25, 2022 in Gardner MA will be so much fun for the whole family!

    Gardner Square Two has put out some more info about the awesome day about to happen in Downtown Gardner on Small Business Saturday, June 25, 2022 from 10am to 4pm. (with other events throughout the evening elsewhere in the City)   See our Complete Article.   Gardner Square Two encourages residents and visitors to Shop! Eat! And Play! and advises ”Downtown merchants and restaurants will be offering specials.  Local organizations and vendors will be displaying their merchandise and conducting demonstrations.   Meet Superheroes and Princesses.  Participate in the games, sidewalk art, and other fun activities.   Join the Mayor at the big ribbon cutting and celebrate Gardner’s 237th birthday celebration at Pleasant Plaza.  So much fun for the whole family!”

  • Monument Park
    The Green Sisters
    The Green Sisters appearing Sat. 6-18-22 at Monument Park

    Gardner MA Monument Park FREE Concerts begin Saturday June 18, 2022 with the Green Sisters

    “The Green Sisters” starts it off and they have an impressive bio. From their website, “Hailing from a small farm in rural Massachusetts, the four Green Sisters were raised with music accompanying their chores. Their sound spans a wide range of bluegrass, barbershop, blues, country, and lots of original songs which fit right into the mix. They’ve been playing venues in New England regularly for the last several years and have garnered quite the following; it’s hard not to smile when treated with their tight harmonies and high energy tunes. Their live show is where they really shine, bouncing their jovial banter around the stage as only siblings can.

    The sisters’ second studio album, Blink of an Eye, was released in late 2020.

    Directions and Schedule

    Monument Park is located near Downtown Gardner MA at 1 Cottage Street, Gardner MA 01440. Google Map 2022 Monument Park Schedule Printable PDF CLICK HERE

  • Smith 6-17-22
    Colin Smith – Executive Aide to Mayor of Gardner

    Gardner MA Mayor’s Update with Colin Smith 6-17-22

    The Mayor’s Executive Aid Colin Smith filled in as Mayor Nicholson was away as a Chaperone for Boys State.   He also spoke of the Boys and Girls Club Gala which had a goal of $100,000.   This was easily surpassed as Ed Atter donated $100,000 himself.  A total of $207,000 was raised for the Boys and Girls Club. —  Smith spoke of it being an honor to be at the Flag Day Ceremony at the Senior Center where he introduced his Father, Brigadier General Greg Smith who was the guest speaker.   The entire Flag Day ceremony is available for viewing on the City’s YouTube page.  CLICK HERE.  

    Smith also went on to speak of the City’s celebration on Saturday June 25, 2022 – See our complete page of the day’s events.   And for this week’s update, visit the City of Gardner YouTube page or our Mayor’s update page, CLICK HERE


  • Braks Done

    Update from Mayor Nicholson 6-17-22: Mayor Nicholson responded to our email with the following: “I’m actually away this week but he was not terminated and there’s nothing official on that at this time. I will look into who said this at the meeting so I can reach out to them to correct this.” Mayor Nicholson followed up again with “I do expect the public announcement on the conclusion of the police situation to be announced mid next week.”

    Gardner Police Department Gardner MA
    Gardner Police Department

    Chief Braks had been on Administrative Leave since February after a No-Confidence vote by 40 out of 41 officers in the Gardner Police Department.

    Gardner MA Hits Brakes on Chief Braksno longer employed by City?, apparently we’ll find out next week…

    Update: Mayor Nicholson has informed us that Dr. Hemman made a poor word choice. The Mayor stated, “The confusion came that since Chief Braks had a voting appointment on the School Building Committee, that position was not represented since the Chief was placed on Administrative leave.To fill that structural vacancy, I appointed Officer Lawrence, the School Resource Officer, to the position so that the Police Department could have a say in the decisions of the Committee. The not employed by the City was a misnomer and word choice error in reference to the administrative leave. That said, I do expect the public announcement on the conclusion of the police situation to be announced mid next week.”

    At a School Building Committee Meeting on June 15, 2022, Steve Hemman stated, “As a matter of public record, Richard Braks is not employed by the City any more, therefore he does not serve on the Building Committee, he’s a non-voting member and the Mayor has appointed John Lawrence to take that spot to be on the building committee, and we have filed that paperwork with MSBA which we are required to do.  There’s no action required by this committee, but just to have it in our minutes that that change took place.” Gardner Magazine will provide more information as we receive it. Watch Meeting


  • Moving Day
    Before it was an Elementary School, Gardner’s Elm Street School was Gardner High School

    Packing starts in earnest at Elm Street and Waterford Street Schools in Gardner MA

    Mark Hawke
    Mark Hawke

    Chairing the School Building Committee Mark Hawke stated that packing started in earnest on June 15, 2022. “At Elm Street School we filled 2 dumpsters.  Waterford filled 2 dumpsters.  They will both be emptied tomorrow and/or Friday, so we can continue cleaning out.  

    I was somewhat surprised at the success we had in cleaning out all the classrooms and packing, and I’m gonna say, somewhere in the vicinity of 80 to 85 percent of the classrooms are clean, green, ready to go.  All in all, things went fairly well. “

    Christina Thomas stated, “I want to send a huge thank you to the high school and middle school faculty and staff who came to our aid today.  It was very touching to have them come in and help move. And pack, and carry. “ It is reported that even the Superintendent of Schools Mark Pellegrino assisted in the moving.

    Earl Martin
    Earl Martin

    To watch the entire meeting, CLICK HERE.

    Mark Hawke said, “Everyone who wasn’t at Elm Street or Waterford street which included Cathy and Joyce and Mark Pellegrino, myself, and everyone at Central Office, and the High School and the Middle school were dispersed and sent to all the other classrooms to assist in any way possible.  So we got a great deal done in one day., a surprising amount done.”

    Earl Martin, “I should second all that, it showed the character of the School District as one that values team and helping each other out. Thanks to the Central Office and all the schools for helping out.”

    Gardner MA Teamwork

Looking for an older story? Or just want to read them? CLICK HERE for more Greater Gardner MA Local News Stories.

News Around Massachusetts – New England – Nation

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  • Gardner Tops 21K
    Complete Gardner Census Data from 2020.

    Gardner MA Population Statistics

    According to the U.S. Census, Gardner has a population of 21,287.    Median Household Income is about $50,000.   Those with a Bachelor’s Degree or higher is close to 1 in 5.   More than half of the population is employed.  98% have health care coverage.   There’s 9,411 total housing units with 691 vacant according to the Census Bureau.  Gardner’s median estimated age of 41 is slightly above the median age in Massachusetts.  One statistic to note: Average Gardner commute time is just under ½ hr. so there’s room for more local employers.  For the complete census data, click here.

  • Visit Gardner

    Visit Downtown Gardner Video Released

    To celebrate a great place to shop, Gardner Magazine has released a Downtown Gardner MA video. Watch it in full HD. CLICK HERE.

  • Shop Local

    Save GAS, Shop LOCAL

    Shopping Locally in the Greater Gardner area is the new vision for the 2020’s. It’s a way to support the local economy and another way to LOVE Your Neighbor. Start shopping locally now, well before Small Business Saturday.   We have a great list of reviewed local businesses for you to shop. (Hint: Most of downtown and most of the city!)  Save GAS, Shop LOCAL. Sure, online can be easy, but shopping at a store in  your community is much more thrilling.  For a list of reviewed businesses in Gardner, CLICK HERE.

  • Open Business in Gardner

    Want to open a business in Gardner? Here’s what you need to know.

    Gardner MA welcomes new businesses.
    Business Startup
    Business Words

    Gardner Massachusetts is a city in Massachusetts with a population of 21,287 as of the 2020 census. Gardner was incorporated as a town in 1785 and became a city in 1923. Gardner is known as the Chair City. People really love businesses in Gardner. Here’s proof.

    Gardner Magazine spoke with Jessica DeRoy, the Economic Development Coordinator for the City of Gardner MA. Jessica tells us Gardner is poised for a period of growth based on the desirability of bringing a business to Gardner and she has some suggestions on where to start.

    The Economic Development team maintains a list of available rentals and properties for sale and will release the current list upon request. Under Mayor Nicholson’s leadership, Gardner is continuing efforts to help facilitate the sale of properties in need of repair to new owners who may have the desire and/or resources to improve the buildings, thus making them more appealing to potential renters. In addition, Jessica says, the Gardner Building Department can assist people in obtaining information on what to do in constructing a new business building.

    Reach the Economic Development Coordinator Jessica DeRoy at (978) 630-4074 ext. 1 or via email at The Building Department suggests a phone call to them is a great place to start. They suggest calling them before buying a property. Roland Jean Jr., the Building Commissioner, can be reached at (978) 630-4007, via email at, or via fax at (978) 632-3313. You can send a fax without a fax machine by using Visit the Gardner MA Building Dept. official page. Visit the Gardner MA Starting a Business page.

  • Expanded News

    Gardner Magazine news pages are generally updated twice per day and contain about 10 news stories per page. Let us know how we are doing. Contact Us.

    Announcing Expanded NEWS Coverage

    Added News pages include: About the U.S.: Breaking, FDA, Top Showbiz Stories, Top U.S. Stories, U.S. Economy News, U.S. News Alternate Sources: CNN, Fox, BBC. Countries of Interest: Australia, Canada, China, European Union, Mexico. Health: Health, Cancer, CDC, Climate, Covid. Neighboring States: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, New York. Politicians and Politics: Bernie Sanders, Capitol Hill, Donald Trump, Joe Biden, U.S. Politics. Topics: Aliens, Money, Science, Travel, UFOs.

    All News pages are listed under the tab LOCAL-STATE-U.S.-WORLD NEWS

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  • Mass. Reports 1,678 New COVID-19 Cases Friday
    by Thea DiGiammerino on July 1, 2022 at 5:26 pm

    Massachusetts health officials reported 1,678 new COVID-19 cases and eight new deaths on Friday. In total, there have been 1,767,337 cases and 19,717 deaths since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The state reported 486 people hospitalized for COVID-19 as of Friday’s data release, with 158 being primary cases. Of the total hospitalizations, 43 are in intensive care and 10 are intubated. Massachusetts’ COVID metrics, tracked on the Department of Public Health’s interactive coronavirus dashboard, have trended back down after a spring bump, but experts warn that this summer will be more challenging than last year, with a much higher level of COVID-19 in Massachusetts. More on the COVID-19 pandemic coronavirus pandemic 2 hours ago Fact Check: COVID-19 Vaccines Don't Contain Fetal Tissue Business 6 hours ago Omicron-Specific Covid Vaccines Could Finally Be Here This Fall—Here's What You Need to Know coronavirus 10 hours ago COVID Levels Continue to Decline Across New England Most of Massachusetts’ 14 is now considered low risk for COVID-19, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The most recent peak was attributed to subvariants of omicron — first, it was the “stealth” omicron variant BA.2, and more recently the BA.2. 12.1 subvariant. Other variants have since been identified in New England as well. The state’s seven-day average positivity was at 6.22% Friday, compared to 5.85% on Thursday. This spring bump was well below the types of case counts and hospitalizations seen at height of the omicron surge in January, when average daily case counts reached over 28,000 and hospitalizations peaked at around 3,300. COVID levels in wastewater, as reported by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority's tracking system have also started to signal declines. The levels of virus seen in the wastewater also remain nowhere near where they were during the peak of the omicron surge. Experts have also said that case count reporting became a less accurate indicator during the omicron surge, given the difficulties in getting tested. Now, widespread use of rapid tests means that some results go unreported. More than 15 million vaccine doses have now been administered in Massachusetts. Health officials on Friday reported that a total of 5,407,910 Massachusetts residents have been fully vaccinated. This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.

  • Warming Waters Allow Rehabilitated Seas Turtles to be Released Off Cape Cod
    by Jason Solowski on July 1, 2022 at 5:07 pm

    This week the New England Aquarium released 10 rehabilitated sea turtles back into the waters of Cape Cod. It was the earliest date ever to release the turtles because of rising surface temperatures. Rescue and rehabilitation manager Adam Kennedy showed us how they care for the reptiles at the sea turtle hospital in Quincy earlier in the day. After seven months of rehabilitation, a loggerhead named Cayenne was ready to be released back into the Atlantic Ocean. Kennedy said six of the 10 sea turtles released were outfitted with transmitters so they can track where they go. “We’re hoping for at least three months and anything longer will be great. And then at some point as the turtle grows, the tag will fall off,” he said. The cold-stunned turtles all washed up on the shores of Cape Cod last winter. Ten years ago, this hospital was seeing 40 to 50 sea turtles a year. Now they’re averaging over 500 each season. The Gulf of Maine, which stretches from Cape Cod Bay up to Nova Scotia is one of the fastest warming bodies of ocean surface water on earth. Last year, the Gulf of Maine Research Institute said it was the highest average temperature ever recorded at 54 degrees Fahrenheit, more than 4 degrees higher than normal. Those warmer waters are ideal for sea turtles and the food they eat, and that warming trend includes the waters on the outer cape. They released the latest group of sea turtles on June 29, beating last year’s record for release on June 30.  “Nantucket Sound really warmed up quickly. So we were kind of taken aback at how quickly we probably might have been able to do it last week. But just logistically speaking, we weren’t ready to go,” said Kennedy The turtles are loaded up in a large SUV and driven down to West Dennis Beach on Cape Cod. A crowd of people showed up to see the turtles off, many of them rescuers with the Mass Audubon Society. “It was special. I wasn’t informed that it was going to be one of my turtles. Really surprised me that it was the one that I rescued,” said John Ogas. Ogas and his wife Sandy found one of the loggerhead turtles near death on point-of-rocks beach in Brewster last winter. “The waters are warmer and they don’t realize the seasons are changing and the weather is dropping. And they stay longer and suddenly it’s too late for them to leave,” said Ogas. Kennedy said West Dennis is a great place to release the turtles into Nantucket Sound so that way they have that nice clean shot down south. With the warming waters, he expects the number of sea turtles coming into this hospital to increase in the coming years. “I mean when I first started almost 20 years ago, we weren’t doing these releases until August and late August for Nantucket Sound to be warm enough. And now here we are in June doing the same thing,” he said.

  • Toddler Falls From Third-Story Window in Lynn, Mass.
    by Thea DiGiammerino on July 1, 2022 at 3:41 pm

    A 3-year-old was taken to the hospital Friday after falling from a third-story window in Lynn, Massachusetts. Police said the child was conscious and alert when they arrived to the address on Houghton Street. The toddler was taken to Mass General Hospital. The fall was accidental and the child is expected to be OK, police said. Specific details were not immediately available, but police said it seems the fall was broken by something below. This is a breaking story. Check back for updates.

  • People Stuck on Sky Ride at Southwick's Zoo in Mendon
    by Asher Klein on July 1, 2022 at 3:29 pm

    The sky ride at Southwick’s Zoo in Mendon, Massachusetts, was stuck Friday afternoon, the zoo said. The zoo didn’t have any more immediate comment. A regional fire network said that the town had requested help getting people off of the ride. The incident was taking place on a hot summer day, with temperatures above 90 across much of the region. The sky ride is one of several attractions at the zoo. It offers “a bird’s eye view of the African Plains, Deer Forest, chimpanzees, alligator, and more,” according to the zoo’s website. This developing news story will be updated when more information is available. This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.

  • Mass. Mother and Son Who Ran Drug Ring Get Lengthy Prison Terms
    on July 1, 2022 at 3:12 pm

    A Massachusetts mother and son who ran a large-scale drug ring that made and distributed hundreds of thousands of counterfeit pills containing the powerful opioid fentanyl to the region north of Boston have both received lengthy prison terms. Vincent Caruso, 27, was sentenced to more than 20 years in prison, while his mother, Laurie Caruso, 52, was sentenced to nine years behind bars, federal prosecutors said in a statement Thursday. Vincent Caruso and his associates were also involved in shootings and armed robberies, which they bragged about on social media, prosecutor Joshua Levy said in a statement. “Caruso, along with his mother and co-conspirator Laurie Caruso, pumped poison and violence into our communities and you won’t be hearing from them on Instagram for a long, long time,” he said. The son, who according to prosecutors was an admitted member of the Crips gang, led the operation that sold the pills to multiple street gangs for further distribution in the Lynn area. Laurie Caruso was her son’s right hand and was the primary distributor, authorities said. They distributed about 36 kilograms of fentanyl, mostly in the form of an estimated 360,000 pills, a significant portion of which were manufactured by Caruso’s organization using multiple pill presses. It is estimated the Carusos generated millions of dollars that were then laundered by conducting cash transactions through sports bets at a New Hampshire casino, prosecutors said. The Carusos “brought nothing but poison, mayhem, and violence to the North Shore of Massachusetts, and beyond,” said Joseph Bonavolonta, head of the FBI’s Boston bureau. “They peddled hundreds of thousands of counterfeit pills containing fentanyl, capitalizing on those struggling with addiction, while raking in an obscene amount of money.” The Carusos were arrested in June 2021, along with other members of the drug ring. Two others have pleaded guilty and await sentencing. Vincent Caruso pleaded guilty in March to drug, gun and money laundering charges. His mother pleaded guilty in February to a drug charge.d More Massachusetts News roe v. wade Jun 28 House Dems Roll Out Massachusetts Reproductive Rights Bill brimfield Jun 26 3 Teens Killed in Massachusetts Crash

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