10. Beach Boys kickin’ it old school in Wellesley: If they’re still allowed to play concerts, I’m allowed to use the phrase kickin’ it old school. An anonymous donor sprang for the free show in May. Town officials pulled out all the stops on the security and transportation front. A Beatles knockoff band also came to Wellesley this summer. We hear there’s a move afoot to bring Elvis to town in ’09.
9. Davis Museum: It’s a lost art: The Wellesley College museum lost a valuable painting by Fernand Leger called “Woman and Child.” On the bright side, people have now heard of Leger. On the dark side, he died in the 1950s.
8. Linden Square comes to life. Some stores had moved in during 2007, but it was Roche Bros.’ stroll across the street into glitzy new digs that really signaled this project’s arrival. The simultaneous arrival of designer dog food came not a moment too late for many a starving pet.
7. Hoop dreams: Boston Swelltics and Wellesley High are champs: Who says Wellesleyites can only golf and sail when it comes to athletics? Wellesley is like the new Springfield. We tried desperately to lay some claim to the Celtics championship in light of Ray Allen, Danny Ainge and owner Wyc Grousbeck all living in town. Though of course we could legitimately lay claim to the Wellesley High Girls basketball championship.
6. Rte. 16/9 bridge/Wellesley Inn site/Grossman’s lot. Wait til’ next year: There were hopes the bridge might be finished this month, but structural and other issues emerged that have delayed it again. The Durant condos to be built on the Wellesley Inn site are now scheduled to open in 2010. The Grossman’s lot situation could see some court action come spring in light of neighbors’ concerns about traffic. Perhaps St. James the Great can spare a few of its vigil participants to set up shop at these sites.
5. Branches are back: The Fells and Hills library branches re-opened in September thanks to hard work by supporters and generous donations from backers. Stumped on something wise-ass to say about this.
4. What happens in Wellesley never stays in Wellesley: Local press went to town when Wellesley was found to be a massage hotspot. A business called Massage Envy later opened its doors offering a legitimate alternative for those who really want a rubdown. Bank robberies and a street cleaner shooting also grabbed headlines in crime-riddled Wellesley.
3. Sprague’s field of dreams, Perrin Park’s dogfight. The turf war settled down and Sprague fields came to life, including a couple of new synthetic fields. A great new accessible playground also opened (as did a refurbished Reidy field, which gave little leaguers a real thrill to play under the lights at night). But while work was still being done on the Sprague fields overflow soccer and other games were pushed to Perrin Park, where dog owners, other park users and the town got into a nasty dispute over dog leashing that’s still simmering.
2. History is history: The old Wellesley Country Club clubhouse got torn down to make way for a fancy new one. Pieces of the old one, site of the town’s birthplace, have been preserved with the idea of sticking them into other buildings around town. Ouch! Just got a splinter.
1. A tough lesson. The dog ate the School Building Committee’s homework and state treasurer Tim Cahill rapped Wellesley on the knuckles before a more modest design for a new high school gained approval from the state. Town residents overwhelmingly voted to support funding for the new school, despite a feisty effort by opponents who warned the school would sink into the ground while also being a financial sinkhole for the town’s residents.