Orleans News

BREWSTER – Some books are harder to find than others, and next week, they may turn up in the places you'd least expect. Book stores will participate in a Cape-wide scavenger hunt for banned books next week, where patrons can walk away with a free book if they spot one out in the wild. Jessica Devin, who owns the Brewster Book Store on Route 6A, is organizing the first annual Cape and Islands Banned Book Sca...

ORLEANS – With drought conditions expected to become the new norm for future Cape summers, town officials last week discussed how to balance water conservation with the need to bring in revenue from water use. The Cape is currently in the midst of a Level 3 drought following an unusually warm and dry summer season that has produced very little rainfall. The drought has led officials across the Cape, including ...

Local Libraries Support Diversity Of Offerings

By: Ryan Bray

Jamestown Township, Mich., is 924 miles away from Orleans. But the small, rural community caught the attention of the Snow Library Board of Trustees last week. Library Director Tavi Prugno updated the board Sept. 7 about how township voters rejected a funding measure last month that caused its public library to lose more than 80 percent of its anticipated operating budget. The reason? Residents took exception ...

Fall Spending Requests Top $4 Million In Orleans

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – Approximately $4.1 million in spending requests are set to go before voters at next month's special town meeting. This year's fall session is set for Oct. 17 in the Nauset Regional Middle School auditorium. The select board on Sept. 7 made their recommendations on articles to be included on the town meeting warrant, which went to press last Friday. The largest expenditure being put before voters i...

Celebrate Our Waters Returns This Weekend

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – With more than 50 miles of coastline and over 63 ponds, Orleans offers residents and visitors unique access to the Cape's waterways. But with those natural resources comes a responsibility to protect them. Now in its 19th year, the Orleans Pond Coalition continues its work advocating for clean water in town. A big part of that effort comes by way of the nonprofit's annual Celebrate Our Waters weekend...

Paid Parking Program Pitched For Rock Harbor

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – Parking is free at Rock Harbor, but that could change come next summer. An article is set to appear on the warrant for the special town meeting next month that would create a paid parking program and associated fees for non-residents for the bay-front lot. Town Administrator John Kelly told the select board Aug. 31 that with large capital projects planned in the coming years, including a full dred...

Kelly To Retire As Orleans Town Administrator

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – A transition could soon get underway toward the hiring of Orleans' next town manager. The select board announced on the town's website last week that John Kelly will retire from his longtime post as town administrator in March. Kelly has served in the position since 1996. "Although it is premature to say goodbye since Mr. Kelly is not retiring until next March; the select board is grateful for Joh...

ORLEANS – How much is too much to spend to improve an aging building? That was the question the select board wrestled with last week as it faced a $1.4 million request to make heating, ventilation and air conditioning improvements to portions of the Orleans Elementary School. Board members expressed reluctance Aug. 31 about putting that much money into fixing the building, the original portion of which date...

ORLEANS – The former Governor Prence Inn will stand on Route 6A for at least a few more months while town officials work to get an estimate for the cost of demolition. During a joint meeting on Aug. 26, the select board and the affordable housing trust fund board both opted against putting an article before voters at next month's special town meeting seeking authorization to raze the property. Officials hope t...

ORLEANS – In searching for a new middle school principal this summer, Brooke Clenchy didn't quite find the person she was looking for to fill the position. But the Nauset superintendent knew what the Nauset Regional Middle School needed. "I think there's joy that's missing there now, and that's one of the things I wanted to bring back," said Clenchy, who enters her second year at the helm of the Nauset distric...

New School Year Marked By Change In Nauset

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – The old normal? The new "new normal?" "We're still trying to figure out what to call it," Nauset School Superintendent Brooke Clenchy said. However you term it, the 2022-2023 school year promises to restore some of the pluck and excitement that has been dulled not just in Nauset, but in districts and schools nationwide since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Two and a half years after...

ORLEANS – Since the start of the year, the new fire rescue station feasibility study committee has busied itself with exploring possible sites for a new fire station. The committee looked at municipal land and private property. A consultant was hired. A call was put out to property owners who might be willing to let their land be used for a new station. Some specific property owners were solicited directly. Th...