News

Spotlight’s on visual art in weekend’s Open Studios

Dorchester Open Studios: April Clay is one of several artists exhibiting at the Walter Baker Artists Lofts in Lower Mills this weekend. Image courtesy DACDorchester Open Studios: April Clay is one of several artists exhibiting at the Walter Baker Artists Lofts in Lower Mills this weekend. Image courtesy DAC
This weekend the new board of the Dorchester Arts Collaborative (DAC) is opening several new venues and tweaking some old traditions during the 2013 Dorchester Open Studios (DOS), which showcase the creative spirit of the visual and performing artists of the city’s largest neighborhood. All 15 sites will be open noon to 5 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday (October 19 and 20) during this 12th annual DOS.

“This year’s Dorchester Open Studios promises to be one of the best we’ve seen in many years. We’re excited at the opportunity of having several new sites exhibit the works of local artists,” says J. Gustavo, DAC Board President. “My commitment to the success of Open Studios and Dorchester artists is but a simple representation of Dot pride and community collaboration that is expressed across our entire board of directors.”  Read more

Recovery is an option at Dorchester Drug Court

Drug Court: (From left) Hon. Rosalind Miller, Presiding Justice of Dorchester Division of the Boston Municipal Court; Hon. John E. McDonald Jr., Presiding Justice of the Dorchester Drug Court; and graduate Daniel Champagne.  Drug Court: (From left) Hon. Rosalind Miller, Presiding Justice of Dorchester Division of the Boston Municipal Court; Hon. John E. McDonald Jr., Presiding Justice of the Dorchester Drug Court; and graduate Daniel Champagne.  

They ranged from ages 26 to 38, two men and a woman, each having struggled and overcome. Up on the second floor of the Dorchester District Courthouse, they became the latest graduates of an aggressive program aimed at helping them deal with addiction and navigate probation.

“They have worked so hard to be here today,” Rosalind Miller, the first justice of the Dorchester District Court, told a crowd of family, friends, court officials and prospective participants of the program who had gathered for a small ceremony earlier this month.  Read more

Reporter’s Notebook: Linehan and Lee at odds on award for police union

The two candidates squaring off in a rematch for the District 2 Boston City Council seat appear to be split on the issue of the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association (BPPA) winning a large arbitration award that amounts to a 25.4 percent raise over six years.  Read more

State education chief eyes level 5 status for Dever School

By 
Will Taylor, Special to the Reporter
Oct. 17, 2013

Massachusetts Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Mitchell D. Chester used a public roundtable format last Wednesday to discuss the imminent possibility of state receivership of the underperforming Dever Elementary School, which has failed to meet the MCAS benchmarks in reading and math established in 2010.

Participants in the discussion included Boston Schools Superintendent John McDonough, Boston Teachers Union President Richard Stutman, Dever McCormack School Principal Michael Sabin, and numerous teachers and parents affiliated with the school.   Read more

Hayrides, pumpkin float lead pack of Halloween-themed events

Hayrides through Cedar Grove Cemetery are a highlight of the fall festival hosted by Cedar Grove Gardens. This year's event is on Sun., Oct. 27.

• Cedar Grove Gardens hosts its annual fall festival on Sun. Oct. 27 from 1 to 3 p.m. The free event features hayrides through the Cedar Grove Cemetery across the street. Kids love to take a whack at one of several piñatas at the garden store, located at 911 Adams St.  Read more

Oct. 24 meeting to focus on health in Mattapan

By 
Staff
Oct. 15, 2013

The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC), in partnership with the Mattapan Community Health Center, the Mattapan Food & Fitness Coalition, and Mattapan United, will host a community meeting on the health of Mattapan on Thurs., Oct. 24. The meeting will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Mattapan Branch of the Boston Public Library, located at 1350 Blue Hill Ave.  Read more

Harbor Point convenience store held up at gunpoint

The Boston Police Department reports the Harbor Point Convenience Store, 17 Harbor Point Blvd., was held up around 8:10 p.m. on Sunday.

"The suspect walked in to the store and brandished a firearm at the cashier. The witness stated the suspect demanded money be placed in a bag, the cashier complied. The suspect fled the store in a maroon motor vehicle.

"The suspect is described as a Middle Eastern male, wearing a fake mustache, black hooded 'North Face' sweatshirt, black jeans and white and black sneakers."

Education reform group wades back into mayoral race for Connolly

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Oct. 11, 2013

Citing outside organizations spending over $1 million in support of state Rep. Marty Walsh's mayoral campaign, an education reform group said Friday they plan to return to the race in support of the candidate they endorsed in July, City Councillor At-Large John Connolly.  Read more

Connolly picks up support from clergy members in Roxbury

By 
Gintautas Dumcius, News Editor
Oct. 11, 2013

They couldn’t all fit inside the small Washington Street campaign office. So the group of a dozen or so black clergy and community members stepped outside and crowded around City Councillor At-Large John Connolly to announce their endorsement of him in the mayoral race.

Several of the ministers had been, at one point, critics of Connolly. When Connolly called on then-Superintendent Carol Johnson to step down due to her mishandling a personnel matter at the O’Bryant School, they leapt to her defense and laced into Connolly last year.  Read more

Official: Shutdown threatening state jobs, rent and heat assistance

By 
Michael Norton, State House News Service
Oct. 10, 2013

A top Patrick administration official on Thursday warned of “dire consequences” from the partial federal government shutdown, which is in its tenth day.

“Thousands of state employees will be facing furloughs or layoffs and dozens of programs for low-income families, seniors and veterans will soon run out of funding,” State Undersecretary of Housing and Economic Development Aaron Gornstein said during a Boston Foundation forum on housing issues.  Read more

Former rivals agree: Walsh the one for mayor

Team of Rivals: John Barros, left, and City Councillor Felix Arroyo, right, endorsed State Rep. Marty Walsh’s candidacy for mayor of Boston during a press conference in Egleston Square on Tuesday morning. Photo by Paul MarottaTeam of Rivals: John Barros, left, and City Councillor Felix Arroyo, right, endorsed State Rep. Marty Walsh’s candidacy for mayor of Boston during a press conference in Egleston Square on Tuesday morning. Photo by Paul Marotta

State Rep. Marty Walsh this week picked up the support of two former rivals and a Democratic ward committee in his pursuit of the mayor’s office while City Councillor At-Large John Connolly received backing from East Boston Councillor Sal LaMattina, one of Walsh’s State House colleagues, and a ward committee.

On Tuesday, Walsh locked hands with City Councillor At-Large Felix Arroyo and former School Committee member John Barros and raised them high as the three politicians stood united in front of a bank of television cameras, “Martin Walsh for Mayor” stickers on their lapels, in a small park in Egleston Square. Because of their status and influence in communities of color, the Arroyo and Barros endorsements were eagerly sought after by both mayoral finalists. In the preliminary, Arroyo came in fifth, with 8.77 percent of the vote, while Barros received 8.1 percent, placing sixth.  Read more

Happy 374th birthday! Mather Elementary, America’s oldest school, is ramping up for the big milestone next year

By 
Dave Eisenstadter, Special to the Reporter
Oct. 10, 2013

Dorchester’s Mather Elementary School will soon turn three and three-quarters centuries old – but not yet.

The fact that this year is the Parish Street institution’s 374th birthday rather than its 375th is not stopping the members of its parents’ council, however. They’ve already begun planning a year’s worth of celebrations leading up to the big 375th bash.

“We’re celebrating what the Mather is today, which is probably the most diverse school in the city – economically, racially, and ethnically,” said Marie Zemler Wu, a member of the school’s parent council.  Read more

New eatery offers hot dogs, soul food in Adams Corner

Hardy & Person Catering: Jonathan Hardy and Kari Person are the operators of a new restaurant at 787 Adams Street that specializes in gourmet hot dogs and soul food. Photo by Bill ForryHardy & Person Catering: Jonathan Hardy and Kari Person are the operators of a new restaurant at 787 Adams Street that specializes in gourmet hot dogs and soul food. Photo by Bill ForryWill gourmet hot dogs and soul food be a hit in Adams Corner?

A pair of neighborhood natives think so— and they're putting their combined culinary skills to the test with the opening of Handy & Person Catering, a new eatery that celebrated its grand opening last Saturday. The restaurant — nestled between the Beach House and the Hair Image salon at 787 Adams Street— fills a previously unmet niche in a busy district that already boasts a slew of established lunch and dinner spots.  Read more

School bus drivers in surprise strike; resolution uncertain

Members of the union representing Boston school bus drivers rocked the city on Tuesday by deciding to go on a surprise strike that enraged Mayor Thomas Menino and disrupted the race for his successor.

Menino called the strike an “illegal action” and asked parents to have back-up plans ready for picking up their children. At a press conference outside the mayor’s office on Tuesday night, Marie St. Fleur, a Haitian-American who became a top Menino aide after serving in the state Legislature, urged the 635 bus drivers, many of whom are Haitian, to return to work.  Read more

UMass Boston proceeds apace on first phase of 25-year master plan

By 
Will Taylor, Special to the Reporter
Oct. 10, 2013

An artist’s rendering shows the layout of the UMass Boston road system and campus after the completion of the Utility Corridor and Roadway Relocation project. Image courtesy UMass Boston

The University of Massachusetts Boston has long had major plans for campus development and remodeling, and a $150 million construction project now in its eighth month is a key element in the first phase of its $750 million, 25-year master plan to update the university for the long term.

Working from the ground up, engineers and construction teams have been busy since the early spring installing a new utility corridor and planning for a new roadway and traffic pattern across the campus grounds.  Read more

Book Festival opens city’s mind, venues to wide range of authors

The National Endowment for the Arts reported that last year less than 47 percent of Americans read even one book for pleasure. One way Bostonians are trying to remedy this deplorable state of affairs is by promoting the Boston Book Festival (BBF). This Saturday the fifth annual BBF will attract between 25,000 and 30,000 people to Copley Square for twelve hours of free book-promoting events.  Read more

Uphams Corner murder prompts meeting with police, residents

Days after the nephew of a longtime peace activist was shot and killed, dozens of members of the community gathered in Uphams Corner to mourn and voice their frustration with violence in their neighborhoods. On Monday night at the Kroc Center, community members packed the cafeteria to hear from police officials and speak out against the violence.

Leroy Carvalho, 31, was the victim of a fatal shooting on Oct. 2 on Albion Street. He was the nephew of Isaura Mendes, who has lost two sons and three other relatives to neighborhood violence.  Read more

Magistrate nominee lauded for work in Dorchester, Brookline

By 
Andy Metzger, State House News Service
Oct. 9, 2013

In a congenial interview with the elected panel that reviews judicial nominees, colleagues of Edward Savage recounted his travels from the "mayhem" of Dorchester District Court to the rigors of Brookline's demanding citizenry.  Read more

Teen charged in Monday night shooting on Corona Street

By 
Reporter Staff
Oct. 8, 2013

A 15-year-old from Dorchester was arraigned Tuesday in Dorchester District Court on attempted murder and firearm charges after he was identified as the gunman in a shooting on Corona Street on Monday night that left an 18 year-old man wounded. Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley’s office says the male suspect— whose name is withheld because he is a juvenile—was ordered held on $500,000 bail by Judge Leslie Harris.  Read more

Menino may take legal action to force bus drivers back to work

By 
Matt Murphy, State House News Service
Oct. 8, 2013

Menino slams bus driver strike: The mayor called for striking bus drivers to return to their jobs tomorrow. Photo by Isabel Leon/Mayor's OfficeMenino slams bus driver strike: The mayor called for striking bus drivers to return to their jobs tomorrow. Photo by Isabel Leon/Mayor's OfficeCaught off guard by a strike of Boston’s public school bus drivers on Tuesday morning, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino said the city would pursue every legal action possible against the drivers as he asked families to arrange transportation home for their children and cancelled afternoon athletics.

"I want all these bus drivers back to work tomorrow morning,” Menino said during an afternoon press conference at City Hall, ridiculing the “illegal action” taken by the unionized drivers to go on strike in violation of their contract.

Menino said the management company Veolia Transportation, Inc. would go to court on Tuesday afternoon to seek an injunction compelling the drivers to return to work, and promised that if drivers would go back to work his administration would sit down with union leaders to work out disagreements over provisions in their contract.

He said the city would also explore possible disciplinary action against drivers who participated in the strike.  Read more

Surprise bus drivers' strike puts brakes on kids' commute

By 
Reporter Staff
Oct. 8, 2013

A surprise and unauthorized school bus drivers strike impacted at least half of the city's student population this morning, according to the Boston Public School department. The work action, which BPS officials have condemned as "illegal", involves around 300 drivers and will impact about half of the city's 33,000 students who ride buses daily to public, parochial and charter schools.  Read more

Mayoral pair hit the trail, key on endorsements, arbitration award

The two finalists in the race for mayor spent the days after the Sept. 24 preliminary chasing endorsements and trading statements over an arbitration award favoring the police department that has dominated the campaign trail.  Read more

Strand hosts star-crossed lovers: Romeo and Juliet now on stage

Jason Bowen and Julie Ann Earls star in the Actors’ Shakespeare Project production of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, now being staged at the Strand Theatre through November 3. Photo by Stratton McCrady

“As a person of color and as an actress, I can say, ‘It’s always nice when you’re at the theater to see a little something of yourself up on the stage.’ ”

At least that’s the experience of Codman Square resident Miranda Craigwell, who will be playing Lady Capulet as the Actors’ Shakespeare Project (ASP) returns to Uphams Corner this weekend for a month-long, multiracial production of “Romeo and Juliet.”  Read more

Estate goes to court to reclaim Fowler-Clark farm from city

A worker hired by the city of Boston cleared overgrowth on the Clark-Fowler farm property on Norfolk Street in August 2013. Photo by Bill Forry

The owner of a historic but run-down Mattapan property that was seized by city officials in August went to court this week seeking an injunction allowing them to reclaim the land. Suffolk Superior Court Judge Judith Fabricant heard from both sides in the case on Tuesday afternoon and is expected to make a ruling in coming days.  Read more