Five years in the making, Lehane's latest novel looks to be a Boston epic

It won't hit stores until after Labor Day. Yet, reviewers have already received their advance copies of The Given Day, the new novel by Dorchester's dean of letters Dennis Lehane.

That kind of lead time says something about the book's heft. It clocks in at just over 700 pages, for one thing. But it also dramatizes an increasingly distant, yet momentous slice of Boston history: the 1919 Boston police strike. It's a moment in the city's history that Lehane says should be given the same historical heft as the trauma of the busing crisis in the mid 1970s.  Read more

Contemplating life without 'Himself', the Senator

Jim O'Sullivan, State House News Service
May. 28, 2008

Benjamin A. Smith II was mayor of Gloucester in 1955, the year that a right end wearing number 88 snagged the Harvard Crimson's only touchdown in a 21-7 whipping at the hands of the Elis in The Game.  Read more

Navy destroyer en route to Boston for Dot Day USS Porter crew to march at head of parade

It's easy forget how tied this place once was to the sea. Since the 1950s - and the construction of the Southeast Expressway - large chunks of our neighborhood have been virtually walled off from the water. But the names of our seaside villages and roadways tell the story of a time before the asphalt and steel slabs got in the way: Clam Point. Freeport Street. Port Norfolk.

Another large reminder of Dorchester's nautical roots steams into Boston Harbor on Friday, just in time to help celebrate the anniversary of the neighborhood's settlement back in 1630.  Read more

Neponset Ave. nursing home looks to set new standard

Daniel Ryan
May. 28, 2008

The front lobby is ornately decorated, with Persian-style rugs underfoot and antique furniture lining up along gleaming wooden walls. A friendly receptionist sits behind a large mahogany desk, ready to answer any and all questions and requests. An aquarium bubbles away in the corner, its aquatic residents filling the room with flashes of color.

The Ritz-Carlton? Maybe the Hilton?

Not quite.  Read more

A few minutes with Mayor of Dorchester Ryan Woods

Martine Louis
May. 28, 2008

The new mayor of Dorchester, Ryan Woods, says he's always on the go and ready to lend a helping hand to his hometown. While the 24 year-old Dorchester native says he enjoys an occasional movie or a game of golf, what pleases him most is community service.

On May 17, Woods hosted a dance at the Blessed Mother Teresa school, which raised over $17,000 [Woods collected a total of $24,259 for the Dorchester Day Parade] earning him the honorary title - Mayor.

Reporter: Where did you grow up in Dorchester and go to school?  Read more

Burke High student wins new car

On Friday, May 16, 50 deserving Jeremiah Burke High School students each received a key that they hoped would start the 1999 Saab 9.3 that Village Automotive Group had donated as part of their Keys to Success program. One by one, each student tried to start the grand prize in a school year-long program that rewarded students for their positive efforts in attendance, community service and academic improvement.  Read more

Carney will be re-invigorated, says de la Torre

Caritas Christi Health Care CEO Ralph de la Torre surprised a Coalition to Strengthen the Carney meeting last week when he strode in and told the audience that Carney would not close or change its service mix in any major way. Instead, he said, it will embark on a major fundraising, recruitment and reinvestment effort to reestablish its image as a competitive healthcare provider.  Read more

New farmer's markets in Dot may take food assistance cards

Three new farmer's markets are cropping up in Dorchester this spring, and they, along with other stands already selling fresh veggies, may soon take EBT food assistance on the spot with the city matching up to $5 per purchase.

"It may be coincidence but I think a couple forums have happened and people are much more aware of the poor health in the city related to nutrition," said Cammy Watts, a lead organizer in the initiative who works at Dorchester's The Food Project near Uphams Corner. "Many people in urban areas live in a food desert."  Read more

In Lower Mills, library friends plan June 7 'extravanganza'

The Friends of the Lower Mills Branch Library hope to change things up at this year's annual fundraiser on Saturday, June 7 by allowing neighbors to get their antiques appraised and giving local merchants and organizations a chance to introduce themselves to the community.

This year's Library Extravaganza has expanded to include a silent auction, face painting and crafts for the kids, as well as blood pressure and sugar screenings by Carney Hospital nurses.  Read more

2008 Dorchester Day Parade Roster

Advanced Units

Boston Fire Department Equipment

Boston Emergency Medical Services

Suffolk County Sheriff's Department

Eascare Ambulance George Gilpin

McCall Transportation Steve McCall

Boston Boarding Mark O'Neil

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and family

Commissioner of The City of Boston

Veterans Affairs Gene Valliencourt

Boston Police Mounted Unit

Boston Honor Guards

Boston Police Gaelic Column James Barry

Chief Marshal Joe Chaisson

Honorary Chief Marshal

Michael Leahy  Read more

Well-seasoned Marty Walsh is 'go-to man' for many; After 11 years, representative's passion tempered by experience

Jim O'Sullivan, State House News Service
May. 27, 2008

The third-floor hallway outside the Massachusetts House of Representatives is a waiting area outside a delivery room. Inside are the people doing the work, and outside are those hoping for happy news.

Expectants stand in pinstripes and pantsuits, with skirts and throbbing BlackBerrys, conducting casual asides that look like grave discussions and serious policy disagreements that look like back-slapping.  Read more

$34 thousand for Dot Day

Who says that a dance at the schoolhouse gym can't help pay the bills.

Ryan Woods, whose campaign collected more than $17,000 in one night at his May 10 dance-fundraiser at the Blessed Mother Teresa school on Savin Hill Avenue, was declared the winner of the 2008 Mayor of Dorchester contest on Monday evening. Woods tallied a total of $24,259 in contributions for the Dorchester Day Parade Committee.  Read more

After a decade of work, a garden blooms at Shawmut

With a yew and haw and a black cohosh, neighbors of the Shawmut T station on the Red Line celebrated the culmination of an over a decade-long struggle last Saturday. Where once stood decrepit warehouses and flooded sidewalks now grows a medicinal herb garden with informational plaques and 36 plant varieties.  Read more

New report on Carney status seen as 'positive'

While community leaders hold a public meeting to discuss strategies to keep Caritas Carney Hospital as an acute care facility tonight, executive members of Caritas Christi Healthcare's Board of Governors will also be briefed on a long-anticipated consultant's report on the future of the financially-challenged hospital.  Read more

Rap pioneer DMC salutes local man for dogfight lyrics

Braidie Connors
May. 21, 2008

On May 13 Darryl "DMC" McDaniels of the legendary rap duo Run DMC personally congratulated Mattapan's very own Dwayne "Dagah" Simmons for winning a rap competition that was judged by DMC himself.  Read more

Former Nantucket selectman launches council at-large bid

A former Nantucket selectman is hoping to snag a seat on the Boston City Council next year. Doug Bennett, a case specialist in Suffolk County's criminal trial court, announced this week he will be running for one of the four at-large seats on the 13-member council.

Stating that he wanted to bring "fresh blood" onto the council, Bennett said of the current members, "They want to stay in forever. They don't believe in term limits."

Bennett said he would push for the creation of a court specifically geared towards domestic violence, cleaner streets, and a focus on "green jobs."  Read more

Memorial Day fare: parade and prayers

The city's longest-running observance of the Memorial Day holiday will hit the streets of Lower Mills and Cedar Grove on Monday morning, as veterans and their families join neighbors for a parade to salute the sacrifices of the neighborhood's war dead - and their comrades who returned.  Read more

Rifts begin to show in Columbia Point planning

Last Thursday's public planning meeting for Columbia Point brought forth a plethora of details, a smidgeon of creative vision, and a hint of old grudges slowly rising out of the old calf pasture.  Read more

Trial underway for accused killer in Bourneside massacre case

For want of a Glock 9mm with glow-in-the-dark "sights."

That's why a 21-year-old Dorchester man fatally shot three members of a local rap group and their friend, Suffolk County prosecutors charged this week, as the trial of accused killer Calvin Carnes got underway.  Read more

Police: Child reports attempted abduction near St. Brendan's school

Boston Police issued a "community alert" on Monday after a 12 year-old boy was the victim of an alleged attempted abduction on his way to St. Brendan School. According to the police alert, the child was approached by a stranger at about 8:15 a.m. Monday as he walked to the school along Gallivan Boulevard.

The unknown male- described as a white male, age 40-50 - attempted to pull the boy by the arm into a vacant lot next to 663 Gallivan Boulevard. The boy broke free and made his way to the school, where he immediately notified the principal, police say.  Read more

Embattled developer's housing plans stalled

By his own account, developer and Boston firefighter Timothy O'Callaghan's finances are spread out a bit too thin these days. At a number of his Dorchester construction sites, unfinished plywood paneling bleaches in the sun and weeds grow up through tire ruts where construction vehicles once roamed. He said he has a plan to find the funds to start work again, but considering the cost of a good attorney, this may take a while.  Read more

Coalition calls community meeting on Carney

A growing coalition of healthcare leaders, Caritas Carney Hospital employees, elected officials and others have called a community-wide meeting to gather ideas and voices to aid the hospital's survival.

"This meeting is for us to take the message much more public, inviting civic groups, the public, Carney employees and elected officials," said Dan Driscoll, CEO of Harbor Health Services. "Closing Carney is a bad idea from an economic point of view, a pubic health point of view and a physician retaining point of view."  Read more

Legislature, Council taking steps to confront rising tide of foreclosures

A trio of bills aimed at stopping an expected wave of thousands of foreclosures this year went before a Beacon Hill committee this week as the City Council appeared poised to okay its own legislation.

The three bills, sponsored by state Sen. Dianne Wilkerson, would ban evicting tenants from foreclosed properties without "just cause," create a 180-day moratorium statewide on foreclosures and set up a judicial process.  Read more

Invasive knotweed helps heal Franklin Park Zoo's giraffe

Daria Casinelli
May. 14, 2008

To feed a finicky giraffe with wasting disease, you need the right food and plenty of it. Beech leaves might be Franklin Zoo denizen Beau the giraffe's absolute favorite, but an invasive plant in Franklin Park called Japanese knotweed turns out to be a close second.

According to Pearl Yusuf, Assistant curator for hoofs and horns at the Franklin Park Zoo, volunteers from the Franklin Park Coalition (FPC) are helping the giant ruminant get enough of his second favorite food to save him from giraffe wasting syndrome.

"They have it and we need it," said Yusuf.  Read more

City negotiates deal on Uphams Corner

May. 14, 2008

One month after the Reporter detailed the story of Boston's largest property-tax scofflaw in mid-February, the city apparently came to an agreement with the Department of Labor and moved to foreclose on the property. A decision could come any day that would potentially place the property in the hands of the Boston Redevelopment Authority, or assign a real estate agent to sell it post haste.  Read more