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Unitarian Church Christmas Eve

The Unitarian Church will hold a Christmas music event at 4:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve. Participants are invited to listen to organ Music and carols by either sitting in their cars on the common or; weather permitting, standing on the common. This event will last about half an hour. All welcome.

Congregational Services Have Resumed

Sunday services have resumed at the Congregational church at 10 a.m. each week. Members are wearing masks and only every other row of pews is to be occupied.

Unitarian Church Fall Services

Below are the services scheduled for the next several months. Those members attending the recent service in the Church Garden agreed to continue services twice a month, led by Rev. Inanna Arthen. The services will be held in the Sanctuary with music but no singing. Enjoy the sounds of organ or guitar in the peaceful setting of the Sanctuary, thanks to the talents of Cathy Tyng and Marc Erwin.

During a service, everyone is required to wear a mask and be seated at least 6 feet away from any other attendee who is not your family member. The current Health Department guidance limits the number of people in the Sanctuary to 21 based on square footage. There will be no coffee hour. 

All services are at 10:30:
November 22 - Gratitude/Thanksgiving
December 13 - The Four Freedoms: Freedom from Fear (Pearl Harbor Day observance)

Bag a Book or Two for Those Stay at Home Days

The Memorial Library is offering curbside pickup of books, audios, and movies. Look for specific titles by viewing the online card catalog by clicking here. Please be sure to select Petersham Memorial Library as items are only available from our town's collection.  

If you would like some suggestions, feel free ask us to put together a selection of titles you might like based upon your reading preferences -- we would be glad to assist. When you find books you want, email your request to marketPetershamLibraryRequests@gmail.com  or call  978-724-3405 and we will process them in the order they are received.

In your message, please provide your name, phone number, book title, author, and, if possible, the item's call number. This will make our turn-around time much faster. Once your materials are pulled and processed, we will call you to let you know when you can pick up. Materials are available for pick up on Tuesdays and Fridays from 2-5pm. Petersham Library is now also accepting interlibrary loan requests, as well as items from its own collection. Delivery may be slow as the system is handling backlogs.

Covid Testing Available Fridays in Orange

The Community Health Center of Franklin County has opened a COVID-19 testing site in Orange where anyone throughout the county and beyond who wants a test for the disease can get one, even if they don’t have insurance or symptoms. Testing is done in the center’s 450 West River Street parking lot every Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Advance registration is required. For more information and to register, call 413-325-8501.

Food Pantries Serving Petersham Residents

Orange, MA Food Pantry
118 East Main Street (across from the Armory)
Open Thursdays 10-3

Evan Manning - coordinator

Salvation Army Athol
Food Pantry 107 Ridge Ave.
Open Tuesday,  Friday | 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
This food pantry is available twice a month or on an emergency basis.
Please call 978.249.8111 for details.
Take out meal program Tuesday nights.

Covid Updates from Heywood Hospital

Heywood Hospital president Win Brown is providing video updates on Covid-19 Click
HERE to see the  updates on YouTube.

Quabbin Woods Open for Takeout Orders

Beginning Wednesday April 29, 2020, Quabbin Woods is open for take-out service from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Call 978-724-3288 to order and pay. Look HERE for menu and specials. Pay by debit or credit card or pick up and pay at the front door.

Nichewaug Video Tour 1993

Just for the Fun of It... click here

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Send it here: info@petershamcommon,com

Petershamcommon.com has been putting local Petersham news and information online since 1996. This website averages 7,500 page views each month - more than any  other source of local Petersham news. It is a good place to spread the word about community events so all can see. There is an Opinion Page open for  thoughts and comments from everyone -- just like Letters to the Editor in aearthlands newspaper.




This website is NOT an official outlet for town government. It presents fact-based  reporting about town government and news about local events. The site is updated nearly every day, so please put us on your list when sending out your news. Simple text e-mails listing who, what, when, where and why do nicely - no PDFs and no posters please. Send it here: info@petershamcommon,com

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You Can't Beat These Prices
At the Dump

Transfer Station (DUMP) Fees

Calendar of Town Committee Meetings

what's open

Free Property Valuation Booklet

The Valuation and Taxes of the Town of Petersham for the Year 2016 booklet is available at the solar installationsPetersham Town Offices at the Board of Assessors Office, the Selectboard Office and the Petersham Memorial Library during regular business hours. Interested Petersham taxpayers are invited to pick up a free copy.

February Selectboard Office Hours

Monday 8  a.m. – 4  p.m.
Tuesday 8  a.m. – 4  p.m.
Wednesday, Thursday
8  a.m. – 4  p.m.
Friday Closed

Sen. Anne Gobi

Rep. Susannah Whipps

 our hisory

Official Town Website -

Committee meeting notices and minutes are posted at  www.mytowngovernment.org

Colorful Fish

If only the river were this blue...
Photos from Petersham, Surrey, England

and A Place to Stay the Night


eddies wheels


Harvard Forest - Fisher Museum

"Great Plates, Eat Out."





Students Heading Back to Center School

Students at the Petersham Center School will be back in school after the long Thanksgiving day weekend. The school switched to on remote
learning and students stayed home for a week after one positive Covid case was identified.
The School Committee Chair Lynn Peredina said, "Stats for the school remain - just the one positive case 
within the  school community. In-person learning resumed last week, and all has 
gone well. School is now on its Thanksgiving break through the weekend."
The school committee voted Nov. 10 to affirm an earlier vote to favor hybrid learning that has had half the  students in the building with staff two days each week. The school has 124 students - about half from Petersham, and a staff of about 70 employees from area towns.

On Nov. 6,  Glazier sent a voicemail to school families that reads in part, "I am calling today to  inform you that a member of our school community has tested positive for Covid-19. We have been planning for this scenario ... and have a comprehensive plan in place to sanitize the school, inform families whose students were at risk of exposure or in close contact, and support the affected family... unless you have been contacted by the school, your child was not a close contact of the affected school member.

"... we are asking those parents whose students are tested for Covid-19 to please report the results to the school nurse, the message said.

Glazier told the committee, "We found that with our support staff being sent home as well we have almost no substitute teachers."  That is not unique to Petersham but schools statewide can't find enough people to fill positions, he said.

Committee chair Lynn Peredina said the school was not closed. Staff and teachers were in the building for remote teaching but students stayed home for two weeks. Parent teacher conferences will also be remote. Glazier said the school has been adding technology to support remote learning.

The state Department of Public Health on Nov. 24 boosted the town's Covid case count from eight individuals to 14.

Almost 90 Percent of Petersham Voters Cast Ballots

Final national results of the presidential election are not decided but Petersham voters mainly supported Joe Biden according to Town Clerk Diana Cooley.

Eighty seven  percent of the town's 1,009 registered voters cast ballots, either voting early or in person. Approximately 460 early votes were cast early either by mail or in a drop box. The rest were cast on election day. Cooley said that adds up to an  87 percent turnout.

Joe Biden received 528 votes. Donald Trump got 321 votes.

Pumpkin Carving, Scarecrow Contest at the Library

The scarecrows have arrived and you can get into the Halloween spirit by carving or decorating a free pumpkin and returning it to the library. Free pumpkins will be available Tuesday, October 20 from 12-6 p.m. during our curbside pickup.
Please slip a note through the book drop letting us know if you've taken any. Include a name, phone number, and the age of each pumpkin artist. Also include this info on the bottom of each pumpkin. Once you've worked your jack-o-lantern magic, return them on Saturday, October 24. to the library lawn amongst the scarecrows or on the ledge leading up to the library

For more information, email PetershamLibraryRequests@gmail.com or call (978) 724-3405.

Dogs, Cats, Local Bears and a Goat by the Road

October 2020 Animal Control

10/01 @6:45a Meet with resident of quarantined dog for transfer to veterinary facility
@10-11a Shelter maintenance

10/03 @7a Call from resident regarding barking dog in woods near home, to area, located owner of hunting dogs on scent trailtune up

@12:30p Message from resident regarding a barking dog complaint between 10p-12a the previous evening, call returned, owner of dog identified and warning given

@1p Resident concern regarding recently moved equines new to the area, information given
@2:30p Re-visit barn inspection

Evening-follow up on barking dog issue from previous call

10/06 @8a Move litter of kittens held at shelter to Worcester Animal Rescue League, RT

10/07 @1p Pick up surrendered cat, transferred to Worcester Animal Rescue League, RT

10/08 @1p Barn inspection

10/11 Assist veterinary surgeon who volunteered to spay/neuter local cats, follow up care given
@12:30p Resident call regarding dog running at large, owner identified, dog home

10/18-20 Multiple calls regarding bear sightings, callers advised of best action plan

10/21 @10a Call from resident regarding odd acting raccoon, PPD also to area, animal relocated itself to storm drain, area to be checked throughout day by both

10/23 @11a Resident submission of photos of loose dog near/on property, all involved parties contacted

@11:30a Call from motorist/resident regarding loose goats on Rt 32 travelling north, to area, one goat secured and walked to home of owner (additional goat previously returned)

10/29 @10:15a Resident call regarding loose dog in yard, to area, likely owner identified, dog picked up by owner

10/30 @12-5p Virtual attendance National Animal Control Association annual meeting

Petersham Cultural Council Opens 2021 Grant Cycle


The Massachusetts Cultural Council has set a December 14 deadline for organizations, schools, and individuals to apply for grants that support cultural activities in the community.

These grants support a variety of artistic projects and activities in the Quabbin region -- including exhibits, festivals, field trips, short-term artist residencies, or performances in schools, workshops, and lectures. The PCC also gives grants for funding projects in the sciences and the humanities, such as historical or environmental education.

Covid Updates from the State Dept. of Public Health

Link to town by town data

Mass Public Health Covid Info and Updates

Swap Shed Closed - Transfer Station Hours Normal

 The Board of Health has closed the swap shed at the transfer station until further notice to help minimize possible exposure too possible Covid-19 contaminants.  godinThe Board also reminds residents that by state orders, residents should not bring returnable containers to the shed for redemption. Do not leave returnable cans/bottles or swap items at the shed. Returnables may be kept at home  storage or put in the town recycle bin.  Masks required. These steps are aimed at minimizing exposure to possible Covid- 19 contaminants.

OPINION: Send Us Your Opinions About the Nichewaug MORE

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