Barnstable This Morning

On Barnstable This Morning this week, host Sarah Colvin and I discussed some of the issues we are working on this summer. The pending lease and property management for the vacant Marstons Mills elementary school is in draft form. A Request for Proposals will soon be issued for the Old Town Hall, which presently houses the JFK Museum. I also reviewed the information that Barnstable has received on how to become a “Compact Community” with the Commonwealth. View the interview: Town Website  YouTube


School Update

Interim School Superintendent Bill Butler has been meeting weekly with me to review financial and human resource matters under our consolidated budget process. He indicated the construction of the new Cobb Early Learning Center, located on the Hyannis West Campus, is on schedule and will open this fall. He also believes the age appropriate playground for the youngsters will be built shortly. This playground has received a generous donation from the Barnstable Disability Commission. The School Department will provide the balance of the funding to construct this accessible playground.


The Dangers of “Spice”: Follow-Up

On Tuesday evening, Barnstable Chief of Police Paul MacDonald hosted a follow-up meeting on the issues facing our community with the use of “Spice”.  “Spice” refers to a wide variety of herbal mixtures that produce experiences similar to marijuana and, while labeled as “not for human consumption”, are nonetheless marketed as “safe”, legal alternatives to that drug.  Spice users report experiences ranging from altered perception to extreme anxiety, paranoia, and hallucinations.  Spice mixtures have been easy to purchase and are sold in some stores in Barnstable.  Because the chemicals used in Spice have a high potential for abuse, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has designated the five active chemicals most frequently found in Spice as Schedule I controlled substances, making it illegal to sell, buy, or possess.  Manufacturers of Spice products attempt to evade these legal restrictions by substituting different chemicals in their mixtures, while the DEA continues to monitor the situation and evaluate the need for updating the list of banned chemicals.   The Chief’s discussion focused on how to curtail the sale and use of this product in the Town of Barnstable, specifically in the village of Hyannis.  The Chief has communicated with the businesses selling this product and requested that they cease the sale of “Spice”. 

This week, Chief of Police Paul MacDonald talked with “Barnstable This Morning” host Sarah Colvin about the dangers of “spice”.

View the interview: Town Website  YouTube


Homelessness Meeting: Follow-Up

Following growing concerns regarding the homeless population, Town Councilor Jen Cullum organized a meeting with Town staff, the Housing Assistance Corporation, the Department of Mental Health and Town Councilors to discuss ways to better serve the needs of this “hard to house” population.  Both the Hyannis Fire Department and the Barnstable Police Department expressed concerns about the costs associated with serving the needs of the homeless. Finding the right shelter model, and the location of that model, was part of the discussion.


Senior Manager’s Meeting

The Senior Managers met this week. We discussed upcoming informal department budget meetings. Next year’s budget already has several financial commitments, such as the subsidy for the Senior Center’s Adult Supportive Day program.  We will be looking at all expenses to be sure we operate within our means. We also discussed preparing reports for the Fiscal 2015 Annual Report, and requirements for the Commonwealth’s Compact Community.


Community Action Committee Celebrates 50th Birthday

On Wednesday evening, the Community Action Committee of Cape Cod and the Islands (CACCI) celebrated fifty years of service to low-income families and individuals. CACCI Board Chairman David Willard gave a snapshot of “Where we are Today.” Former State Senator Henri Rauschenbach spoke about the trend of agencies collaborating and merging to deliver services more efficiently. (CACCI and JTECH are in a collaborative relationship.) Kris Dower, CACCI Executive Director, spoke about “Where Are We Going?” and focused on the contributions of the staff. Helping People Help Themselves has been the guiding principle of CACCI over the past fifty years, and they hope to continue to meet that mission.


Cheryl Bartlett on Opioid Issues

Cheryl Bartlett, Executive Director of the Cape Cod Regional Substance Abuse Prevention Initiative, met with me this week to discuss her ongoing efforts to build coalitions to help stem the abuse of drugs. She mentioned pending legislation which would require a survey of students in certain grade levels to determine their “at risk” factor for becoming alcohol or drug users. As a registered nurse and former Commissioner of Public Health, Cheryl has a strong background in prevention programs. She is working throughout the Cape to address the opioid problem both regionally and in the Town of Barnstable.


Cape Cod Baseball League Hall of Fame Meeting

Judy Scarafile, President of the Cape Cod Baseball League (CCBL), Jim Higgins, Senior Vice President and Chair of the CCBL Hall of Fame, and John Garner, Director of Public Relations, met with me to discuss possible locations in Barnstable for the CCBL Hall of Fame. They mentioned this has been a terrific season with quality teams and players destined for careers at the major league level. Attendance at the games is up and the league is as popular as ever. The Hall of Fame is currently housed in the lower level of the Old Town Hall, and the JFK Hyannis Museum’s plans for expansion include utilizing that space. The CCBL Hall of Fame is looking to expand and find a permanent home. Any location suggestions from eNews readers would be appreciated.


Peter Doyle’s Retirement

Thursday at noon Barnstable employees gathered at Water Pollution Control to wish Peter Doyle a happy retirement. Peter has worked for thirty-six years for the Town. He has been an innovative leader and true professional. It has been pleasure to work with Peter and he will be missed. Good luck with next phase of your life, Peter!  

Peter talked about his career for Barnstable’s 2014 Years of Service ceremony. Watch the video here: Town Website  YouTube


Sturgis Library Touch A Truck

On Tuesday, children were invited to Sturgis Library to meet local heroes and explore public safety and DPW vehicles. The Touch a Truck event was a huge success, with kids enjoying all sorts of interesting machines and equipment, playing in foam courtesy of the Barnstable Fire Department, talking with police and firemen, and of course – eating ice cream! What better way to spend the day and get to know the people who work hard to protect and to serve.



The Sturgis Library’s Touch a Truck event brought children and local public safety workers together. Pictured, on the left: James Marks and Craig Fidler of the Highway Division. Click here to view more photos from the event!


Wait List Lottery for Slips at Prince Cove and Gateway Marina

50 names have been added to waiting lists for slips at the Marina at Prince Cove in Marstons Mills and Gateway Marina in Hyannis. The Gateway Marina wait list was open to all. Prince Cove was limited to Town of Barnstable real estate taxpayers and residents only. The lottery was held on Friday July 24, 2015 at Barnstable Town Hall, 367 Main Street in Hyannis.


Can you answer this Jeopardy question?

You may have been watching “Jeopardy!” on Tuesday night and noticed an interestingly local question under the category of “Peninsulas”. The $800 answer: “Hyannis is one of the towns on this Massachusetts peninsula.” While I’m sure every single one of our readers knows the “question” is “What is Cape Cod?”, we also know that Hyannis is not a town, but one of our Town’s seven villages. Putting that little error aside, we always enjoy seeing our Town mentioned on national T.V.


ArtsBarnstable Weekend Highlights


Local artisans, local designers, local food, local music – it’s a celebration of Cape Cod creativity at Love Local Fest this Sunday, July 26th at Aselton Park. The fun begins at 11:00 AM. Peruse the more than 50 local vendors offering unique jewelry, pottery, original artwork and beautiful made-on-Cape Cod items. Enjoy the sounds of Alicia Mathewson, Palmer Egan, Jordan Renzi and the Trailers, performing all day on the Love Listen Local stage, and tempt your taste buds amongst the fabulous local food trucks.


Why not spend a lovely summer evening stargazing? Get up close and personal with the stars – the celestial kind that is - at the Cotuit Library’s stargazing party on Monday, July 27th at historic Lowell Park in Cotuit. Starting at 8:00 PM, Fran and Jennie will have the Cotuit Library telescope set up for all to peer through and marvel at the wonders of the night sky. If you have your own telescope, feel free to bring it along!


Wander to West Barnstable to view watercolors by M. Ellen Duarte, on display at the historic Old Selectmen’s Building (Meetinghouse Way, Route 149), presented by the Historical Commission. The gallery at the Old Selectmen’s Building features a different artist every week. Ellen’s watercolors will be on display from 10am until 4pm Wednesday, July 29 through Sunday, August 2nd. (The gallery opens at noon on Sunday). While you’re in West Barnstable, stop at Meetinghouse Farm to peruse locally grown flowers and produce, catch a glimpse of the gorgeous floral quilt, and scan the schedule for the many programs and events held at the farm throughout the year.


Visit for a full list of all things

 arts and culture in our seven villages!




Last week’s trivia question: Last week, we asked: Many Cape Codders have one must-do Cape Cod summer activity. What is yours? Fried clams, Four Seas Ice Cream, a trip to Provincetown, and savoring some quahog “chowda” all made the list.

This week’s trivia question: How old is the Cape Cod Baseball League? What is the only town with two teams? Email your answer here.  


Barnstable This Morning

Week in Review

July 20-24, 2015



Monday, July 20, 2015


Town Manager Tom Lynch joined us in studio Monday morning to discuss the Compact Community Cabinet.  Interim Superintendent Bill Butler reviewed the steps that new administrators will take prior to beginning the school year.  We traveled to the Cotuit Library to visit with Library Director Jennie Wiley, who filled us in on all sorts of fun summer activities at the library.  Cape Cod Community College Dean Susan Maddigan shed light on the Certified Nurse Aid/Home Health Aid program offered at the College.


Tuesday, July 21, 2015


Chief of Police Paul MacDonald joined us live in studio Tuesday for a close up look at the dangerous designer drug Spice. Our Community Profile segment featured a discussion with 1717 Meetinghouse Foundation member Roger Henson. Cape and Islands State Senator Dan Wolf talked with us about an effort to stimulate housing and economic development across the Commonwealth. Phase One of an independent study of the Stewart’s Creek culvert project is complete, we received an update from Director of Public Works Dan Santos.


Wednesday, July 22, 2015


Our Business Barnstable segment this week featured Cape and Islands Workforce Investment Board Chair David Augustinho. Governor Charlie Baker has designated July as Hurricane Preparedness Month. We welcomed Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency Public Information Officer Peter Judge into our studio to discuss the outlook for the season, as well as ways in which to prepare for a storm. Love Yoga Fest is making its return to Aselton Park this August – we visited the founders & organizers of the festival to get an inside look.


Thursday, July 23, 2015


We began Thursday’s show at Hyannis Golf Club. Director of Golf Operations Bruce McIntyre talked with us about long-term plans for improvement at the facility.  Next, we welcomed Rob Miceli, President of the Cape & Islands Chapter of Mass Bike. Rob talked with us about important bicycle safety rules and regulations, and work Mass Bike is doing to help improve the Cape’s roadways for its many cyclists. 5th Barnstable State Representative Randy Hunt talked with us about the dangers of synthetic marijuana. Director of Veterans Services Ed Merigan joined us to discuss records and replacement of lost medals.


Friday, July 24, 2015


This week’s Arts and Culture segment brought our viewers aboard the historic schooner “When and If”, which is in Hyannis Harbor this month.  Director of Leisure Services Patti Machado talked with Sara Mannal at Keyes Beach in Hyannis, and HYCC General Manager Joe Izzo previewed a number of upcoming activities. Len Gobeil talked baseball with Cape Cod Baseball League PR and Broadcasting manager John Garner. Sandy Neck Beach Park Manager Nina Coleman discussed the Town’s purchase of a 14 acre parcel on Sandy Neck, and provided updates on plover and tern activity on the beach.