Annual Town Meeting national anthem 2023
The William Diamond Junior Fife & Drum Corps helped open Town Meeting's first session on Monday, leading members in the national anthem. (Kunal Botla / LexObserver)

Good morning and welcome to this Friday’s LexObserver roundup!

Our publisher kicks off today’s newsletter with a goodbye and a big thank you to an important member of our team:

Dear Readers – 

We’ve got a big issue for this week: there’s a lot of news coming out of the start of Town Meeting, including a new ban on fur and the absence of the Minute Men from the opening ceremonies. But we’ve also got stories about the Lexingtonian starring in American Idol this Sunday at 8 p.m. on ABC; a climate change protest against Bank of America on the streets of Lexington; the official designation of Lexington as a Cultural District; the debut of our new climate and energy columnist; and as always our Police Blotter, Letters to the Editor and community announcements.

All of this while our only full-time staff reporter, Sophie Culpepper, is recovering from COVID-19 – thanks to her dedication and the work of a growing army of volunteers, we’ve got one of our most robust issues ever. But it is also a moment to thank Erin Sandler-Rathe. Erin joined our team about ten months ago and has been pivotal in helping us grow our newsroom. She led the development of the Police Blotter, Obituaries, Letters to the Editor, and community announcements – all while coordinating and managing our year-end fundraising campaign with the national NewsMatch program. She also worked to organize our first events, a series of community conversations in partnership with the Lexington Lyceum Advocates. She moves on to take a new position outside of Lexington – but will remain a part of our advisory board. Her countless hours – most of them volunteer! – have been transformative for our fledgling non-profit. Thank you, Erin! 

In addition to this week’s packed edition, you might have missed some of our recent coverage anticipating some of the hot issues at Town Meeting; LexSeeHer’s fundraising push for the new monument; Reimagining Education with Lexington author Michael Horn; and is it possible Lexington could have a American Idol winner alongside our recent Nobel Prize winner and Grammy winner

Thank you all for everything you do for our great town – Nicco Mele, Publisher

Here’s this week’s news:

New Cultural District Designation could attract new grant money – and more tourists

The Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) board reviewed the Town’s application to become a state-sanctioned cultural district and voted unanimously to approve it

Lexington Economic Development Director Sandhya Iyer, was perched over her computer yesterday morning, nervously watching a live stream of the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) as the board reviewed the Town’s application to become a state-sanctioned cultural district.

Keep reading

Heat Pump It Up

It is the perfect time of year to be talking about adding or converting to heat pumps, which can provide both heat and air conditioning — an increasingly attractive option for Lexington residents who want to move beyond window unit air conditioners.

With this article, The Lexington Observer begins a regular series, written by Gerry Yurkevicz, addressing energy, climate and environmental issues that may be important to Lexington residents.

Keep reading

Letter to the Editor

To submit a letter to the editor, please contact Thank you!

Community Submissions

To submit a community announcement, please contact Thank you!

That’s a wrap for today. Was this roundup useful to you? What do you want to see in this email next week? Let us know, and please ask your friends to sign up and DONATE too! Reach out to with tips and questions anytime. As always, you can also check out and share our websiteTwitterInstagram and Facebook pages. Thanks so much for reading and have a great weekend!

Nicco Mele, Sophie Culpepper, Erin Sandler-Rathe, Susanne Beck, Julie Turner and the LexObserver Team

Edited by Nicco Mele, Julie Turner and Erin Sandler-Rathe

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