Mattapan Patriots compete in playoffs, hold youth tournament

Alex Owens, Special to the Reporter
Nov. 5, 2010

The Pop Warner Mattapan Patriots have entered the playoffs for the 2010 season. The Patriots D Team had their first matchup against the Billerica Warriors on November 4. The D Team was ousted by the Warriors in a 20-13 loss, which ended thier season. The Patriots A Team and C Team are scheduled for thier first games on Sunday November 7. The A Team will face the West Lynn Rams at Russell Field in Cambridge at 1:00 PM. The C Team will face the Billerica Scouts at Lampson Field in Billerica at 11:15.  Read more

Vote on closing schools delayed; parents still on high alert

Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Nov. 4, 2010

Superintendent Carol Johnson is delaying a vote on plans to close schools, giving parents opposed to the closures a month to regroup. Dorchester schools on the chopping block include Roger Clap Elementary and the East Zone Early Learning Center. School officials had also been pushing to merge the Lee Academy Pilot School and the Lee Elementary School.

“Overall, I’m optimistic that we have the extra month or so to get them to change their minds, and hopefully this opens up more of a debate,” said Kenny Jervis, one of the parents leading the charge to keep Clap Elementary open. “We’re happy we got the extra time but it’s nowhere near a victory yet.”  Read more

Conference to help city churches make sorely needed renovations

Alex Owens Special to the Reporter
Nov. 4, 2010

Dorchester’s spiritual community has borne firsthand witness to the community’s history, which stretches back nearly four centuries. It was members of a church community, the First Parish Church, that founded this city within a city. After decades of service to their neighborhoods, many of Dorchester’s church buildings are daue for a much needed facelift, and their congregations are turning to the city’s historical organizations for aid.  Read more

Analysis: Grassroot Dems pulled out all the stops for Deval

Door-knocking for Deval Patrick : Volunteers hit the streets in pairs to drive out votes in Ward 16Door-knocking for Deval Patrick : Volunteers hit the streets in pairs to drive out votes in Ward 16Gov. Deval Patrick won a whopping 80 percent of the vote in Dorchester — and 95 percent of the vote in Mattapan— on Tuesday, as predominantly African-American precincts in Wards 14, 17, and 18 chalked up lopsided vote totals that helped cushion the governor’s surprising statewide margin and earn him a second-term in the corner office.

In topping the ticket in every precinct in Dorchester and Mattapan, the governor’s triumph was more convincing than his historic 2006 election, at least in this part of Boston.

MORE: Voter consensus: "Thank God it's over"

Chris Lovett on CivicBoston: More Voters, Lower Turnout

Precinct-by-precinct breakdown of the numbers in Dot, Mattapan  Read more

Mattapan CDC ribbon cutting

Mattapan CDC ribbon cutting

Marked the dedication of new affordable housing at 327 Wood Avenue, Mattapan. Pictured (left to right); Rev. Zenetta Armstrong, Phillip Brown, Executive Director Spencer DeShields, Representative Linda Dorcena Forry, Richard Walega - NE Regional Director HUD, State Representative Willie Mae Allen, State Representative-elect Russell Holmes. Back row Gordon Bannister.

Almont Park to get $3.6 million overhaul

Alex Owens, Special to the Reporter
Oct. 22, 2010

Almont Park in Mattapan will see significant renovations beginning next year, residents were told in the a public meeting held on Wednesday evening at the Mattahunt School.  Read more

Two honored at B-3 police meeting

Alex Owens Special to the Reporter
Oct. 21, 2010

Mattapan heroes honored: Councillor Charles Yancey, center, with Shaniqua Johnson and Saquawna AndersonMattapan heroes honored: Councillor Charles Yancey, center, with Shaniqua Johnson and Saquawna AndersonBoston Police from District B-3 held a monthly community meeting on Tuesday at the Mattapan Library with a packed crowd of more than 70 people on hand. This was the first regular B-3 meeting since the Sept. 29 shooting on Woolson Street that took the lives of three adults and a toddler, and residents were eager to receive updates about crime in the community. They were joined by Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley, who answered limited questions about the murder investigation.
The police department also presented awards recognizing residents for their service to the community. Shaniqua Johnson and Saquawna Anderson were singled out for their bravery when they rescued a 93-year old woman from a house fire on Hazelton St. on Oct. 13.  Read more

Editorial: Reverse the vote to close the Lower Mills library

A meeting at the Lower Mills library on Monday evening could well decide the fate of that branch and, ultimately, branches throughout Dorchester and across the city at large. It is now time for all people who feel — as we do — that libraries are a critical civic asset to show up and make their voices heard.

Library officials have scheduled two sets of meetings, starting this weekend. One set of seven meetings — dubbed “strategic planning” sessions by the BPL brass — starts on Saturday with a kick-off event at the Copley Square central library. Then, on Monday, a second-tier set of four meetings— all to take place at branches that are scheduled to close — begins with a gathering at the Lower Mills branch at 6:30 p.m.  Read more

Mattahunt center in limbo; community bypassed, say critics

Gintautas Dumcius and Bill Forry, Reporter Editors
Oct. 20, 2010

Mattahunt School and Community Center: City closed center last summer and a proposed partnership with Wheelock College has yet to begin.Mattahunt School and Community Center: City closed center last summer and a proposed partnership with Wheelock College has yet to begin.

(Editor's note: This article was updated online on Friday, Oct. 23 to reflect comments from Boys and Girls Club of Boston president Joshua Kraft.)

Eight months after the city of Boston began the process of closing some of the city’s 46 community centers, the Menino administration is still laboring to finalize a deal with Wheelock College to take over the former Mattahunt Community Center in Mattapan, which ceased operations as a city-run center last summer. The move is drawing criticism from community members and one of Mattapan’s city councillors, who are calling for more input and engagement with the broader community.

City officials and other supporters of the Wheelock deal say it will create a unique partnership that will expand programming at a time when the city is reeling from the effects of a weak economy and prepping for an even tighter budget next year. A deal can’t be brokered “overnight,” but an agreement will be announced in the coming weeks, they add.

“There’s a great opportunity with Wheelock,” said Daphne Griffin, executive director of the Boston Centers for Youth and Families, which oversees the city’s community centers. “Not only are they well-respected…but they have a very strong institutional program background around out of school time and after school time.”  Read more

Prosecutor: Man had gun used in 4 Mattapan killings

Denise Lavoie, Associated Press Legal Affairs Writer
Oct. 15, 2010

(AP) —The only person arrested in the shooting deaths of four people — including a 2-year-old boy — had one of the murder weapons and a victim's car, and other people are believed to have been involved, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

Kimani Washington, 34, was ordered held on $500,000 cash bail after his arraignment in Dorchester District Court on charges of weapons violations, receiving a stolen car, drug trafficking and being a career criminal. Not guilty pleas were automatically entered on his behalf.  Read more