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Torrential rain sends Town Hall's 100th celebration indoors

Town Hall with bunting in 1930, an image used in current flier.

Arlington Town Hall celebrated its first century indoors Friday, June 7, because of torrential rain.

Marie Krepelka's, the selectmen's administrator, said 220 tickets had been sold.

Organizers had hoped to sell 150 at $40 apiece. Earlier  Wednesday, 155 had been sold. Later that evening, organizer Bob Bowes said the count had climbed to 180.

Krepelka said she thought Town Hall's second-floor Hearing Room as well as the hallways would accommodate celebrants, who gathered from 5:30 to 7 p.m. to enjoy a cash bar and hors d'oeuvres prepared by Tryst Restaurant.

From 7:15 to 9 p.m., in the Robbins Memorial Auditorium, hundreds celebrate 100 years with a program featuring Richard Duffy, the town's unofficial historian. His historical narrative highlighted the part of the centennial celebration taking place inside Town Hall, said Patsy Kraemer, who is among those organizing the gala.

Interspersed in Duffy's narrative will be musical numbers representing the four 25-year periods since 1913.

The first 25 years include a couple of selections from "The Wizard of Oz" and a World War I song ("the Caisson song"). 

The second quarter-century includes a "Big Band" number and a song by the Andrews Sisters

In a late addition to the program, Town Manager Adam Chapdelaine will sing "Mack the Knife," Kraemer said May 20.

Chapdelaine said May 21 that his goal is to do Bobby Darin's 1959 version, not original from "The Threepenny Opera."

"I am not sure that I am much of an actual singer, but I am going to try my best to add to the entertainment of the event," he wrote.

The third includes a protest song from the 1960s and a Beatles selection.

The last 25 years include "Happy Birthday" and a musical surprise.

Singalong numbers will be included from each era for audience participation.

The musical presenters include the Arlington High School Madrigals, the High School Jazz Band and the Selectones. All will involve the audience.

Kraemer declined to provide a more specific list of songs, because some fluidity about exact selections remains in some cases.

Read an earlier, more complete account of celebration plans

Just inside the front entrance to the Robbins Library, to the left, the public can see story boards that Duffy created with images and text about the history of Arlington Town Hall. 



Tickets for the June 7 event cost $40 and went on sale when Town Meeting began, April 22.

Marie Krepelka, the selectmen's administrator and a committee member, said April 24 that she had 300 tickets printed and the goal is to sell 250.

They are available at the selectmen’s office, second floor, Town Hall; Leader Bank branches in Arlington; and through Patsy Kraemer (781-858-8629 or pkraemer at

Make checks payable to: Town Hall Arlington

 Visit the Jason Russell House weekends

Explore Colonial history in Arlington with a tour of The Jason Russell House. Tours are underway and run weekends through Oct. 13.

For more information, visit

This story was published Wednesday, May 15, 2013, and updated June 7.

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