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Dot beach-goers don't have to travel far for sand and surf

I am always shocked when I meet someone from Boston who says, “ Dorchester has beaches?” Even more shocking is when this is uttered from a Dorchesterite, because Dorchester has several beautiful, sandy beaches on Boston Harbor.
Obviously, the National Seashore they aren’t, but they rank among the cleanest urban beaches in the country due to the new MWRA sewage plant, and the BWSC/MWRA separation of the street stormwater plumbing from our household waste sewerage.
One of the key players in advancing the cleanup of Boston Harbor is Save the Harbor/Save the Bay, led by Patty Foley and Bruce Berman. Dot resident Matt Wolfe helps to direct a small staff that organizes harbor cruises, marine mammal safaris, and provides grants for myriad other summer beach events.
Using funding provided by the Boston Foundation, National Grid and Comcast, thirteen grants were provided for events and programs at Harbor beaches from Lynn and Nahant down to Hull. This year, Dorchester is lucky that three of those thirteen grants are coming to Savin Hill, Malibu, and Tenean beaches; two for repeat events and one for a new series.
New to the beach events scene, The Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester and their community partners will host two Family Fun Nights this summer on Savin Hill Beach with a cookout, sandcastle building, free t-shirts, and other games. The event will serve to build community awareness while providing a fun neighborhood atmosphere on the beach. Kip Parker at kparker@bgcdorchester.org and Mary Kinsella at mkinsella@bgcdorchester.org are organizing this effort.
Following in the footsteps of their recently deceased father and uncle, Brian Leahy and Popar Leahy, Kristin Leahy Brohel and her sister, Tricia Leahy, are again planning the Tenean Beach Day for Sat., July 25 from noon to 5 p.m. The event will include free refreshments and entertainment. This year’s Tenean Beach Day will build on last year’s neighborhood event by advertising to a wider audience and providing entertainment, refreshments, and water races, as well as marine education activities for children.
In February of ‘08, Maureen McQuillan, representing the Beautification Committee of the Columbia Savin Hill Civic, and I, representing the Friends of Savin Hill Shores, conceived of the Dorchester Beach Festival. Along with a small committee, we used that year’s SHSB grant as seed money to double our dollars and to lure dozens of in kind donations of services, giveaways, and programs. Again this year, we will have canoeing, sailing, kids art, the Aquarium and Zoo, environmental and historical exhibits, games, a beach bounce, music, and many more free things to do, see and take away. Renowned caterer Au Soliel will again sell food designed for the beach, DotWell will organize health screenings and displays, and DotOut will be hosting an engaging activity. The website dorchesterbeachfestival.com has all the info, including directions for those who don’t know that we have a beach. Sea you down the beach!
Paul Nutting lives in Dorchester. He may be reached at Parksindot@gmail.com