By Ashley D’Souza

An afternoon downpour was no match for the crowds gathered in Coolidge Corner to celebrate Brookline Day on September 10. Approximately 12,000 people of all ages came together from Brookline and beyond to visit vendor booths, enjoy live musical performances, and participate in games and festivities with their community. A comprehensive collection of local businesses, nonprofits, and town associations united at the event to engage with attendees and showcase changes they are making in the Brookline community. The Brookline Recreation Department organized the event.

Brookline Day moved from Larz Anderson Park to Coolidge Corner last year to improve accessibility and support shopping locally, and businesses tabling at this year’s highly trafficked event shared their craft with returning customers and newcomers. “I was surprised to meet many people who did not know that Eureka even existed or who had never come to Coolidge Corner before,” said David Leschinsky, owner of Eureka! Puzzles & Games. “Brookline Day brought them into the area, and one person we met at the event came in later to buy something. So, it works!”

Nonprofit organizations showed up strong. The Brookline chapter of Mothers Out Front, a national nonprofit dedicated to combating climate change, spread its efforts by recruiting volunteers and educating attendees about climate action. “I hope we get lots of volunteers for the Brookline mini-forest planting day on October 15,” said Gina Crandell, leader of Mothers Out Front’s mini-forest project. “Many people have signed up on our sign-up sheet and gotten our QR code for our website.” Mothers Out Front stood by the event’s trash, recycling, and compost bins, helping attendees dispose of items into the correct containers based on material. Their zero-emissions working group also demonstrated the environmental benefits of induction cooking.

Some businesses and nonprofits collaborated at Brookline Day for the good of the community. Sorriso Market, a liquor store in Brookline Village, used their table to promote both their own business and the efforts of their nonprofit neighbor, Gateway Arts, an art studio, gallery, and store supporting adult artists with disabilities. Sorriso’s table sold wine and fresh pasta from their store as well as artwork from Gateway Arts.

Several Brookline town associations tabled at the event, such as the Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Community Relations. The office promoted its new app, Inhabit, a community hub for Brookline residents with a real-time newsfeed, event invitations, and an inventory of local businesses and organizations.

Attendees seized the opportunity to participate in organizations making change in the Brookline community and beyond. “I plan on contacting the Domestic Violence Roundtable this weekend to see how I can get involved in their upcoming events and policy work,” said Anna Margaret Clyburn, a new Brookline resident attending Brookline Day for the first time. “It’s really exciting to be immersed in a group of people who care so much about their community. I feel that energy and want to take part in it as well.”

The Brookline Recreation Department wants community input on this year’s Brookline Day to make the event even better next year and encourages attendees to fill out their Brookline Day survey. The recreation department also offers regular programming at their facilities for people of all ages. To learn more about future recreation department events and programming, visit