Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?
These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.
Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...
...seems to be working so far
Saturday, December 22, 2007
A Tree Saved in Sturbridge
Then came Kirstie Pecci, a resident of McGilpin Road. She fought for the tree, had arborists check out just how much living wood was still within the tree, and then confronted the Board of Selectmen and the Tree Warden in order to save it. This old oak is referred to a "Heritage Tree" because of its age, and to date there had been no plan in town to protect these trees other than ones that were in plain sight, such as around the Common. The sparing of the oak on McGilpin Road would establish a precedent the Tree Warden stated. He was not against establishing a precedent, but wanted the BOS, and the Town to know that it would cost money now, and in the future to save and maintain the trees.
Well, the Board listened, and the Tree Warden offered to apply for a grant to offset the cost of tree maintenance. It was suggested a Tree Committee be formed to aid the Tree Warden, and one was formed. In the end, the Old Red Oak was saved. The Town will still go ahead with its paving of this old lane, but the overall widening of the road will be considerably cut back.
Now, there is a lesson here. When folks feel the need to speak out on an issue that is close to them, they become impassioned. A simple issue as saving a tree caused a woman to speak up, and present information contrary to the status quo. And, she did it without yelling, or slapping her opponents. She did it with passion, and grace, and the Board of Selectmen, and the Tree Warden responded in kind.
So, keep this in mind, you reap what you sow, even in a Board of Selectmens meeting.