The temperatures say summer, but with Labor Day behind us and a school year stretched out in front, we have to admit it. The grasshopper days are over. Here’s what you missed in Wellesley if you were traveling and enjoying yourself, unplugged and unworried. We stayed on top of things for you. It’s what we do:
1) Local reporter (me) almost hit by car in Wellesley
Our top-read story over the summer concerned my near-flattened experience on Wellesley Avenue. Fortunately I wasn’t struck, but it wasn’t for lack of trying on the driver’s part. My experience certainly struck a nerve in town, and comments about similar close calls poured in. Readers also wrote in to express great relief that I squeaked through…aw, thanks guys. READ MORE
2) MBTA cut down hundreds of Wellesley trees
Anybody who takes the commuter rail hasn’t been able to miss the tree removal work that MBTA contractors have done. We got an email from a chagrined reader who characterized the work as a “horrible hack job” and noted that although “Our property doesn’t abut the tracks, we feel badly for those who do.”
I went down and took a look. Indeed, it’s not pretty. READ MORE
3) Wellesley mourns Robert J. Hinchliffe: Devoted family man, WWII infantryman, longtime town leader and volunteer
Wellesley lost one of its Greatest Generation heroes. As his obituary read, “Bob loved Wellesley and Wellesley loved him, choosing him to lead the parade twice, as the recipient of the Distinguished Service and the Veterans’ Honor awards. He was one of the half dozen longest serving Town Meeting Members in town history…” and the list goes on. Truly a pillar of the Wellesley community. READ MORE
4) Gorgeous Wellesley homes recognized for historically sensitive renovations
The Wellesley Historic Commission (WHC) awarded plaques to homeowners who completed historically sensitive renovations of two of Wellesley’s proud older structures. Among them: 51 Glen Rd., built in 1721 and 309 Walnut St., built in 1900. READ MORE
5) Wellesley dog photobombed by woodland creature — this you’ve gotta see. SEE IT HERE
6) The ant bikes came marching one by one into Wellesley
Wellesley wasn’t among the more than dozen communities selected to take part in a dockless bike rental system involving the Metropolitan Area Planning Council, but such bicycles have nonetheless started to roll into town. Ant Bicycle’s signature green bikes have been popping up all over the place… READ MORE
7) Wellesley Municipal Light Plant offers full internet service for commercial customers
The Wellesley Municipal Light Plant (MLP) on Monday, July 30 made a recommendation to its Board to offer internet service to commercial entities in town as the next step toward moving the program from pilot to permanent status… READ MORE
8) Wellesley mom gets Ambush Makeover on Today Show
Tiffany Zides, an already hot Wellesley mom, entered New York City as her usual self and left as one of “two great girls” plucked from the Today Show throng at Rockefeller Center to get an Ambush Makeover by fashionistas Louis Licari and Jill Martin. READ MORE
9) Wellesley neighbors facing real uphill battle over rehabbed house and yard
Here’s what can happen when a buyer snaps up the cozy Cape abutting your home, cuts down a few dozen trees, and brings in truckloads of soil. READ MORE
10) Is humble Wellesley news site (us!) an enemy of the people?
The call to take up words and defend the very bedrock of journalism came from no less an institution than The Boston Globe. We answered, with aplomb if we may say so ourselves. Before we knew it we found ourselves on the New York Times op-ed page. Yep, that’s what we did with our summer. READ MORE
11) Historic John D. Hardy house to go under review for tear-down
What makes this 132-year-old building historically significant is that it was the home of noted Wellesley civic leader John D. Hardy from its completion in 1896 until his death in 1924. Its association with Hardy is an important factor making it among the most historic houses in the Belvedere Estates/Wellesley Country Club area, and therefore Wellesley. READ MORE
12) Will Wellesley College ban dogs on Lake Waban?
As usual in these situations, two issues loom large: dog waste and unleashed dogs. READ MORE
13) Best of Wellesley Business Buzz:
Code Ninjas is coming into the space formerly occupied by Massage Envy. The computer learning center will welcome girls and boys ages 7-14 to learn to code by building their own video games.
Work continued at Door No. 7. The new chef-driven business from the operators of The Cottage is slated to open soon.
The venerable Page Waterman Gallery, founded in 1917, moved from its Church Square location to 592a Washington St., where its headquarters and restoration studio have been located since 1983.
Red Apple convenience store peeled out. No replacement business there yet.
Orangetheory Fitness, a chain that specializes in 60-minute cardiovascular and strength training workouts has started up its first classes at 56 Central St.
Earlier this summer Le Vernis Nail Studio moved into the former 2nd Time Around space at 574 Washington St., upping the number of nail salons in town to well over a dozen.
Smith & Wollensky steak house opened at the very beginning of summer in the former Blue Ginger space.
Coming soon: Fiorella’s Express, a fast casual Italian eatery at the former Susu Bakery location.
Wellesley Square at Beclare retail spaces:
CouCou, a stylish kids’ store opened in August
Laer Realty Partners added Wellesley to its list of approximately two dozen offices located mostly in Massachusetts
Pucker Gallery expanded beyond its Newbury Street location in Boston. The gallery offers international modern and contemporary art.
To look for soon: Barber Walters barbershop
Fiorella’s Express, a fast casual Italian eatery at the former Susu Bakery location.
Papa Razzi closed for renovations in July and has celebrated its re-opening with a larger bar area and a refreshed menu, and expanded parking. (They’re hiring, BTW.)
Mark’s Pizza was torn down to make way for that expanded parking. The pizza shop’s website says there are plans to re-open in a new location soon, perhaps at the former Zoots spot, but we haven’t heard much lately on this…
Real estate firm Realty Executives took over the Forest Street space in between Wellesley Variety and Deluxe Pizza.
White’s Bakery & Cafe is coming to Wellesley in the former TD Bank location in Playhouse Square on Washington Street. Expected opening in Fall 2018.