Umbrellas by Claire Agerback, OttosonUmbrellas by Claire Agerback, of Ottoson, is among the banners.The town Select Board approved Feb. 7 banners promoting a library community reading program and public art as well a 5K race to benefit an education nonprofit.

All next month, be on the lookout for Arlington Reads Together banners in Arlington Center and East Arlington.

March -- Arlington Reads Together:Selectboard logo, May 20, 2019

The Arlington Reads Together program aims to bring Arlington together through literature. It addresses issues, understands differences and creates connections through the shared experience of reading. See the agenda document >>

April, May -- Youth public art: From April 1 to May 31, Arlington’s Youth Banner Initiative plans to display 22 banners on 11 light poles on Mass. Ave. in the town center. See the agenda document >> 

This year’s theme is “color.” Of the more than 100 artworks submitted, 20 were chosen. The winners include an Arlington art teacher, a local artist and 20 Arlington students. Three students will be awarded scholarships, event coordinator Sarah Gurney, Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture, said at the Feb. 7 board meeting.

“The goal of the Arlington Commission for Arts and Culture Youth Banner project is to solicit, promote and showcase artwork by Arlington middle school and high school art students. This project honors the memory of APS student Gracie James. Funding is generously provided by the Gracie James family,” wrote Gurney in a letter to the Select Board.

Board member Eric Helmuth said, “These students show a high level of talent, and there are a lot of high-quality submissions. I look forward to seeing these on our light poles.” 

“This beautiful artwork will advance Mass. Ave.,” said board member John Hurd.

AEF sponsors 5K race May 15

Runners, prepare! On Sunday, May 15, the Arlington Education Foundation (AEF), an Arlington nonprofit that supports public education in town, is holding a 5k race.

Event coordinator Laura Fuller said, “During the pandemic, we’ve been seeking outdoor activities to bring our community together. Other education foundations in neighboring towns have held 5K races.”

“We propose to start the race at 8 a.m. and will coordinate with the town’s various running clubs. Our plan is to hopefully have a maximum of 600 participants, about half which will come from affiliate running programs,” said Fuller.

See the agenda documents for this item >> 

The race starts and ends at Hills Hill field, next to Summer Street, and tentatively plans to use the Minuteman Bikeway, hoping to close it.

Town Counsel Doug Heim said, “I’m not sure the town can close the bike path for an event. It’s Arlington’s to operate in agreement with the MBTA. I think it’s fine, but I’ll double-check.” 

Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine will coordinate with the police and other departments on use of the bike path. “Based on past precedent, it’s something we can work through,” said Chapdelaine.

Select board member John Hurd said, “I always look forward to 5Ks in town, and it’s a fun, safe event to conduct right now. The police can review the safety concerns. It’s held on a Sunday morning, so most bike path users will be recreational.”  

Watch the whole Feb. 7 Select Board meeting on ACMi:

Arlington Reads Together '22
Youth Banner Initiative '22 

This news summary, by YourArlington freelance writer Susan Gilbert, was published Monday, Feb. 14, 2022.