A Farewell to the Weston Town Crier and A Nod to Needham

A couple of weeks ago, I chanced upon a wonderful column by Gloria Greis in the Needham Times by way of its online re-printing on the Needham History Center and Museum page. In a decidedly anticlimactic way, I will summarize the post: as of Thursday, May 5, the Needham Times will end its print version in favor of a digital publication of regional news. Ms. Greis goes on to talk about how this breaks her heart–and let me tell you, when a historian says something breaks her/his heart, you know it’s pretty sad. After all, no one is more prepared for the ups and downs over the years than a historian. Read her post though it be about Needham–it’s both informative and emotive. Please note that I did ask for permission to re-post her link on this page.

Needham is not alone. The Weston Town Crier will also cease print publication this Thursday. Get your last copy to frame. Frankly, it’s been a march to this situation for quite some time. Most Weston Town Crier subscribers and readers have noted the move away from local news in both the digital and print versions over the last year. The Owl gave up her subscription in 2021.

For those who have been Owl followers for a while, and Crier too, you will know that Weston as a local news source ended with the move of Mike Wyner to other papers in 2021. You can see the Owl farewell at this link. Someone is going to ask me if the Weston Town Crier is as old as the Needham Chronicle and Needham Times, or older, and I am going to be like Mark Twain and be proud to have the answer: “I don’t know.” I looked at Pam Fox’s amazing history book, and at the Library of Congress but found only info to 1966 and also the fact that a “Fence Viewer” newspaper was published in Weston in 1959. Hunh. What was that about? Anyway, my guess is that is pretty old. Too mathy for you? I empathize.

Town Crier November 1997. Image credit–=the Weston Historical Society Bulletin

You may choose to subscribe digitally to the Weston Town Crier here: https://www.wickedlocal.com/westontowncrier/. Yes, we are now “behind a slash”–not even with our own town web address. Will it cover more Weston digitally now? I don’t know–recent print versions have been mostly regional or national news. There remain excellent local blogs and online papers for metrowest: the sWellesley Report, the Lincoln Squirrel, the Carlisle Mosquito, others. Please support those–none of them is rolling in money. Metrowest Daily News will cover Weston (call them if you want their attention), and there are number of local newsletters and blogs too numerous to cover here (BOS Today is my favorite Boston news source now).

A few people have approached the Owl asking for this page to be more “objective” and a real “news source.” Here’s the issue, folks. The Owl is opinionated– and honest in her representation of said opinions. I like to find the humor when I can–our town is very humorous, though one can sometimes lose track around Town Meeting season because somehow it always turns nasty. Botttom line: I’m only doing this because I find joy in it. Sometimes there is less joy–I am overwhelmed with requests for publishing events, adding humor to town issues, and encouraging this town to be the strong community it has always been and shall be again, with or without the trees. Don’t get me started on the trees. I also too much love my other volunteer role at Weston Forest & Trail Association. There is not time for it all.

If you do follow the Owl’s posts or ask for posts or learn something, consider supporting this page. If you hate the liberal-tree-environmental-humor leaning of the page, well, scroll on by. Free press and all that. I am so ready for the someone to start the “Weston Fisher,” or “Weston Crow”, an animal that of course loves to give the owls a hard time. Communication is a huge part of community–when it is gone, one more link is broken.

RIP, Weston Town Crier as local news source. Onwards.


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