, Salem, MA

July 9, 2013

Letter: Signs a boon, not bane, to Wenham

The Salem News

---- — To the editor:

Did you know there are free concerts at Patton Park on Sundays in the summer? Did you know it’s time to register for fall youth sports? Did you know there is a water ban in Wenham? Did you know the veteran’s memorial is seeking donations? If you have driven along Route 1A in Wenham in the last two months, then the answer to these questions is yes!

Thanks to the selectmen, local organizations can place a small sign on a visible corner to inform those living or passing through the community about town happenings. The July 5 article in the Salem News (“Selectmen crack down on signs”) suggests the Wenham selectmen will be limiting the number of signs at the corner of Arbor and Main, also known as the Car Barn lot.

The current policy allows for local nonprofit organizations to submit a form for placement of a sign for up to two weeks before and a few days after an event. Some events are ongoing, so those signs remain in place for a much longer time — the veteran’s memorial fund drive, the United Way, youth sports registrations, Sundays in the Park concerts, and the water ban for instance. During busy election season, signs reminding residents to register to vote, get information about voting, and then vote can seem to be ever-present. An arbitrary limit on the number of signs would diminish the ability of nonprofit organizations to communicate with our community and create difficulty for the town in selecting which signs go up and which do not.

Instead, let’s appreciate the signs as indicators that our community is buzzing with activities for all ages; sports, theater, gardening, voting, library events, etc. These are the qualities that attract many to live, work and visit our community.

Michelle Bailey