Author Archives: Michael Oates

Find Age-Friendly Businesses on the Coolidge Corner Shopping Map

mapBrooklineCAN’s age-friendly businesses are now on the map! The new edition of the Coolidge Corner Merchants Association’s shopping map now uses a heart icon to identify businesses that are participating in our age-friendly business campaign. Town-wide nearly 50 businesses have committed to the campaign. Many of them are in Coolidge Corner. The map includes a photo of a Coolidge Corner merchant proudly displaying her Age-Friendly Business window sticker. Because it is cleverly folded, the map is not only informative but convenient to carry. The map is available free-of-charge at the Senior Center, Eureka Puzzles, Wild Goose Chase, Brookline Booksmith, Brookline Bank in Coolidge Corner, Hamilton’s restaurant, and the Courtyard Marriott hotel.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration January 21

mlk“Reflections on Race—Brookline Then and Now” is the theme for our Town’s annual MLK Day celebration at 3:00 pm, January 21 at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. The program will feature Brookline: Facing Civil Rights, a documentary film highlighting recollections in the 50s, 60s and 70s by six Brookline residents.  Following will be a discussion with Boston Globe Spotlight Editor Patricia Wen who oversaw a 2018 seven-part series on race issues in Boston.  This event is free but to guarantee a seat you must reserve a ticket beforehand.  Tickets are available at  until Friday, January 18. Remaining seats will be filled on a first come basis at the Coolidge Corner Theatre just before show time.  Contact Caitlin (Haynes) Starr with any questions or concerns at or 617-730-2345.

Day of Service to Honor Martin Luther King, Jr.

dayof serviceThe Town of Brookline has three projects on January 21 to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  (1) The Brookline Food Pantry will accept non-perishable food and personal care items; see for details.  Donations drop off: Kehillath Israel, 384 Harvard Street, noon to 2:00 pm.

(2) More Than Words Bookstore, a non-profit serving at-risk youth will be accepting books, CD’s, video games and other items suitable for resale.  For details and assistance, contact Chobee Hoy at  Donation drop-off at Brookline Booksmith, 279 Harvard Street, 11:00 am to 2:00 pm.

(3) Inspo-Expo, 2nd Annual Brookline Action Fair. Meet your Brookline neighbors, learn about their social action projects, and take part in fun, hands-on activities for both kids and adults. Kehillath Israel, 384 Harvard Street, noon to 3:00 pm.

Did you resolve to…

Resolutions1Eat healthier?  Get more exercise? Save more money?  If you did, you are among the majority of Americans who made those resolutions for 2018.  There is a very long history of making New Year’s resolutions. The ancient Babylonians are said to have been the first people to make New Year’s resolutions, some 4,000 years ago.   Famous people made resolutions, as well as us common folk.  Some are humorous—a New Year’s resolution is “something that goes in one year and out the other”.  The playwright Samuel Beckett admonished us to “Ever tried.  Ever failed.  No matter.  Try again. Fail again.  Fail better”. And Ralph Waldo Emerson reminded us to “Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year”.


Booksmith Events for the Community

booksmith2The Booksmith at Coolidge Corner offers regular author readings and book clubs programs.  Upcoming readings include essayists DeWitt Henry, David Blair and Marc Vincenz  on January 4 and mystery writer Joanna Schaffhausen on January 15, both at 7:00 pm.  The Book Club will have a moderated discussion of The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani on January 14 at 7:30 pm.  (The Booksmith asks you to note that their events space is only accessible by stairsThey also sponsor some events held at the Coolidge Corner Theatre that are fully accessible.)  You can find out about these and many other events by picking up a flyer at the store at 279 Harvard Street, visiting, or emailing .

New Transportation Guide

TRiG_4th_edition_FINAL (1) 1TRIPPS (Transportation Resources, Information, Planning & Partnership for Seniors) is pleased to announce the release of the fourth edition of its Senior Transportation Resource Guide. The guide now includes profiles of over 40 transportation options for seniors, including information on cost, hours, coverage areas, eligibility, accessibility, contact details, and much more. It also includes some great resources like grocery delivery options, information on disability placards and plates, and sample transportation budgets. You can pick up a paper copy at the Senior Center, or access it at

Most important Age-Friendly Business Practices

Survey3When we asked the public to offer opinions on what is most important in making a business age-friendly, three dimensions stood out: places for customers to sit and rest, helpful staff, and access to rest rooms. The top rated dimensions were mentioned more often  than such other features as special products and special prices for seniors. We conducted our opinion survey at both Brookline Day and on our website. Last month we invited newsletter readers to offer their opinions. We also received some useful comments such as:
            Staff who speak loudly and clearly without being patronizing.
Patience with seniors, who may take longer with transactions.

We are sharing the results of the survey with the businesses that are participating in our campaign. We are keeping the survey open to provide more opportunities for members to make comments. To participate in the survey, click here

Friends of Library Holiday Book Sale

book2It’s that time of year again! The Friends of the Brookline Public Library will kick off its Holiday Sale this year on Saturday December 1 at the Brookline Village Library, first floor.  As in years past, the sale will continue for days on end – that is, as many days as our special holiday inventory lasts!  Surely the first week and even into the second week of December, come by the Library to find the very special gifts for family and friends at prices that can’t be beat.  We know you’ll find gifts for everyone on your list,  and you won’t be able to resist… and can afford … an item or two for yourself!

Age Friendly Cities TV

Age tvThe 19th Age Friendly Cities TV show focused on tax deferrals and exemptions, and the Tax Work-off program available to Brookline residents over age 65.  Two guests from the Town of Brookline Assessor’s office and one from the Brookline Senior Center explained the benefits and procedures for applying for these tax benefits.
After this episode was recorded, Governor Baker signed the law that will allow the 2019 Brookline income limit for deferrals to be raised to $86,000 up from the prior year limit of $57,000!
Programs are aired on Channel 3 on Comcast and RCN immediately following The Grandstanders live sports analysis show and are available on the BrooklineCAN web site and the BrooklineCAN Twitter and Facebook accounts.

“Age Friendly Magic for People of All Ages”

puppet1Introduce holiday visitors of all ages to Brookline’s Puppet Showplace Theater, where you and they will meet fascinating characters from around the world on the theater’s main-stage.
December 13 to 16, hop aboard a train and meet “The Snowflake Man,” Wilson “Snowflake” Bentley, a self-educated farmer and scientist who was the first person to photograph a single snow crystal in the 1920s. December 20 to 24, join the German hand puppet hero Kasper on two imaginative adventure stories that come to life on a whimsical puppet stage made out of a giant umbrella! On December 26 and 27, Wayne Martin puppets magically bring to life “Santa Mouse,” the timeless and beloved Michael Brown story of the little mouse with no name.  And December 28 to January 1, the National Marionette Theatre presents Prokofiev’s musical masterpiece, “Peter and the Wolf”. This stunning production, features hand-painted scrolling scenery and intricately designed marionettes.
Ticket prices, depending upon the production, are $12 or $15 for adults and children. For more information about these and other puppet activities, visit or phone 617-731-6400 x 101.