p>When most people get a dog, they weigh the benefit of a "best friend" against a dog food bill, plastic baggy duty and the likelihood of a few chewed up shoes and pillows. What some don't expect - outside of a few calculating bachelors - is automatic membership in a neighborhood subculture of fellow dog-owners. Read more
When Ernest "E-Knock" Phillips, leader of the local dance crew Status Quo, returned to Boston after competing on MTV's "America's Best Dance Crew," he was confident that a second-place finish would bring him and his boys the fame that they always dreamed of. But three months later, a second season of the dance competition has hit the television waves, the winning Jabbawockeez dance crew is on tour with MTV, and Phillips is back in Dorchester, wondering when his dancing will start to pay off in dollars. Read more
To be sure, the old-school pubs and taverns still holding on around Dorchester are not universally loved. But each of them, no matter how much the Larry Bird and Bobby Orr posters have faded on the walls, is intensely loved by a crowd of regulars of variable size, and that is definitely the case of the Peabody Tavern on Dorchester Ave. Read more
Jul. 9, 2008
In the Fields Corner section of Dorchester you'll find pizza shops, Chinese restaurants and a McDonalds fast food spot. But what some residents have been starving for is a taste of their Caribbean roots. And the newly opened Belle Cuisine on Adams Street is offering just that.
The Haitian-American restaurant opened its doors about a month ago and is already a hot spot for local residents and especially the Haitian community. The restaurant's owner, Antoine Dorcena, says residents no longer have to go far outside of their neighborhood to find a place that will cater to their needs. Read more
Folk singer Odetta, who showed Harry Belafonte a thing or two about song and inspired the likes of Bob Dylan and Joan Baez back in the 60s, opened up the Playhouse in the Park series Tuesday. A few present were taken back to 40-year-old memories of the Elma Lewis Playhouse of the 1960s. Odetta first played there in 1968. Read more
Six months after a young man was found fatally stabbed in a Tuttle St. apartment, no arrests have been made, but a Suffolk County grand jury investigation is underway into the case.
Daniel Yakovleff, 20, of Roxbury, was found stabbed to death on Jan. 17 in the third floor apartment at 56 Tuttle St. Since then, little information has been released about the murder. Read more
The singers of Ashmont Hill include, l-r, Phil Thompson, April Joy Thompson, Deborah Bullock and Wil Bullock. Photo courtesy Big Machine Media
Over the years, the Ashmont Hill section of Dorchester has shared its name with tire stores, trendy eateries, an MBTA stop and even an alt-rock record label.
Now, a newly formed gospel quartet with deep roots in the neighborhood have adopted the moniker. Read more
The MBTA - facing an ongoing battle with graffiti near its Fields Corner station -all but jumped on a request for space to paint a mural there from the domestic violence prevention organization Close to Home recently.
"When the general manager got this in, this is something he wanted to do anyway, coming from a good community organization" said GM Daniel Grabauskas's chief of staff Kris Erickson. "But when we found out later that it would also be a benefit to us, it sounded like a slam dunk." Read more
Thanks to a $150,000 grant, the Friends of Edward Everett Square plan to finish "beautifying" their adopted intersection by the end of October.
In conjunction with landscape architects and an artist, the group will use the Grassroots Open Square Grant to add 10 bronze sculptures that will surround the already well-known Clapp pear statue on Columbia Road near East Cottage Street, plant various flowers, and install signs that will provide information about the artwork, the history of Dorchester, and give credit to the project's contributors. Read more
The pop-thwack, pop-thwack of racquets striking tennis balls is not unusual at the Sportsmen's Tennis Club. But 32 tennis champs who are thwacking balls across the courts there this week have earned some distinction.
A slew of nationally-ranked players are helping to raise the Blue Hill Avenue venue's profile in the second annual US Tennis Association's Women's $50,000 Pro Challenger tournament. Now through next Wednesday, players are competing to win the big bucks and a slot in the venerable US Open. Read more
Sunshine, fresh air, socialization and Cheerio-bracelet-making? Sounds like the answer to the prayer of parents or caretakers with little ones on their hands this summer, but with no money for camp and too-crazy a schedule for regular commitments.
Now celebrating its 11th year of bringing a wide range of cultural offerings to city greenspaces, the Boston Parks and Recreation Department's ParkARTS program with help from Comcast will once again sponsor a series of free drop-in children's craft workshops. Three of the 12 sites this summer are in Dorchester or Mattapan. Read more
Chando Souffant spends $930 a month in tolls ferrying passengers to Logan Airport and back. Fellow cab driver Valville August's wife does all the work at home on her own, with August working 16 to 17 hours a day. And Pierre Duchemin is thinking about getting out of the business altogether.
"This is the life style," Souffant says. "You're working for nothing. They call us ambassadors of the city, but they treat us like a slave."
Most taxi cab drivers in the city work 7 days a week, at 16 to 17 hours a day, the drivers say.
"Those who want to make money," Duchemin says. Read more
Jul. 2, 2008
Sixty-eight-year-old Lula Mae Johnson is living proof that education has no statute of limitations.
In May, Johnson was one of 37 adults to cross the stage during a GED ceremony at Faneuil Hall. Now the Mattapan resident says her next step is a college degree.
Back in her native South Carolina, Johnson was a student at Roberts High School. The summer before her senior year Lula, then 19, says she and her boyfriend decided to get married, which led to her decision not to return to school. Read more
A recent photo of the ancient Trolley 5164 as it sat in a yard near Mattapan Station. It has served various Boston transit companies and agencies since 1907. Photo courtesy The Lone Rider
Identified only as car 5164, it was never well known. It was only one among an order of 100 identical Type 3 passenger cars when it first arrived, shiny and new, from the St. Louis Car Company in 1907. Read more
As rumor mills go, St. Peter's Parish is no different than any other in this age of church closings and parochial school consolidations. So when the 7:30 mass was taken off the weekly schedule, and the church bulletin called the faithful together for a meeting this Monday - mere weeks after the final graduating class left St. Peter's clutching diplomas and shedding tears -the wildfire rumor that the 164-year-old church's days were also numbered was inevitable. Read more
Longtime Dorchester business and civic leader John B. Byrne, a Braintree man who was born in Dorchester and spent all of his working years in this community, has died at the age of 96.
Byrne, once dubbed the "lord mayor of Fields Corner," died peacefully on June 26 at a Cohasset nursing home, his family said. Read more
Willie Mae Allen's mother had a saying: If you know that you're being chased, you don't look back.
"I'm not looking back at my opponent," said the Democratic state representative in seeking her second term. "I'm concentrating on my race."
Under new leadership, Boston's Puerto Rican festival has apparently shaken off the financial troubles that caused its cancellation in 2007, and will once again roll to the Salsa beat this weekend in Franklin Park.
The turn-around began even before the July fest was cancelled in June of 2007, when the old leadership of the festival stepped down and Reyito Santiago, now president of the board, and a number of other sponsors and volunteers agreed to engineer a comeback. Read more
New games are in town this summer as the St. Brendan's Gaelic Athletic Club kicks off its opening season, bringing Gaelic football and hurling to Dorchester's fields.
"All are welcome," said Larry McGann, hurling coach and secretary of the St. Brendan's club. "These are two of the most popular sports around the world that American kids have yet to play."
With their deep Irish roots, Gaelic football and hurling in the United States have been played mostly within Irish communities, but McGann and Frank Hogan, the chairman of the club, hope to change all that. Read more
Call it a rematch of sorts. Spurred in part by Sen. Barack Obama's run for the White House, a Dorchester woman who helped manage William Celester's unsuccessful campaign for the Sixth Suffolk seat in 2006, is mounting a run to challenge incumbent state Rep. Willie Mae Allen.
Faustina "Kathy" Gabriel said she was frustrated with the lackluster turnout in the district for the Super Tuesday primary and sees a need for new leadership. Read more
The sound of ambulances and police cars roaring are not uncommon in the Melville-Park neighborhood. But, neighbors say, the emergency vehicles are usually racing to someplace else in Dorchester.
But on Dec. 13, 2005, they all converged on Bourneside Street - a short side-street opposite Town Field - and launched an investigation into the murders of four young men, three of them members of a nascent local rap group, Graveside. Read more
Employing Dorchester as a backdrop, Gov. Deval Patrick this week officially unveiled his highly-anticipated education reform effort, dubbed the Readiness Project.
The raft of proposals - full-day kindergarten and universal pre-kindergarten, a "portfolio" on each individual child, a statewide teacher contract, merged school districts, and free community college, among others - are aimed at taking Massachusetts out of what Patrick aides say is a 20th-century education system for low-skill, low-knowledge workers. Read more
As the school year draws to a close, the three schools that make up the Dorchester Education Complex are all on the brink of leadership changes.
The complex on Dunbar Avenue, which houses the Edward G. Noonan Business Academy, the Academy of Public Service, and TechBoston Academy, will have two new headmasters come September and a third the following year. Robert Belle, the complex's chief administrative officer, said that the future holds a lot of potential for these young schools, created in 2002 and 2003. Read more
Harbor Point should be integrated with the rest of the Columbia Point community and local transportation around remains a keen problem, residents told a city task force on June 14. The comments came at a Saturday "visioning" session held at Boston College High School. The event was convened by a BRA-led committee with an eye towards creating a master plan for the 412 acres between I-93 and Dorchester Bay. Read more
A new "Right to Cure" law has slowed the rate of new foreclosure filings to a relative crawl, according to state Land Court officials, but the drop may be only temporary, say some.
Beginning May 1, when the law first took effect, the rate of affidavits filed with the Land Court slowed to an average of less than 20 a day, said recorder of the court Debbie Patterson. The month before, the number of the same affidavits, which are an early required step in the foreclosure process, averaged around 150 a day.
"Big effect," she said. Read more