Dec. 16, 2010
The numbers are deeply disturbing: Nearly eighty percent of the shootings in Boston in 2010 have taken place in the three police districts that cover Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan.
Last year, 223 people were killed or wounded by gunfire in Boston, and 174, or 78 percent, of the shootings took place in districts B-2, B-3 and C-11. This year, with several weeks to go, the number of shootings in the city has increased to 258, and, again, 78 percent of them were in these three districts.
The Search for Solutions
These stark numbers only convey part of the story. The real story, those on the front lines of the battle tell the Dorchester Reporter, is the impact this violence is having on those who live and work in these neighborhoods – and whether they will assert strongly to families, friends, and acquaintances that they will not tolerate the continued presence of guns or further criminal activity in the homes and on the streets of their neighborhoods. And, too, there is the overarching question of the role of the rest of Boston in this enterprise: Will they join Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan – or abandon them – in taking on the challenge of saving the streets. Read more
Monday’s family-friendly, Dorchester-themed Christmas celebration at the Strand Theatre hit all the right notes. The event was staged by the Boston Classical Orchestra, whose executive director, Sean Roberts, lives on Jones Hill and has taken a special interest in reviving the Columbia Road theatre. Read more
Dec. 8, 2010
Fourteen would-be charter schools have applied to the State Department of Education to be granted charters to start up new schools in Boston out of 23 across the state. Representatives from several of the applicant schools appeared before a panel of state education officials in Boston City Hall on Tuesday to press their case.
Though plans for the schools are still in the preliminary stages and locations for school facilities are not definite, some of the proponents for the proposals heard Tuesday vowed to serve underprivileged students from Dorchester, Roxbury and Mattapan. Read more
Dec. 7, 2010
The Strand Theatre was the venue for last night's Dorchester Christmas Celebration, featuring the Boston Classical Orchestra under the direction of conductor Steven Lipsitt. Above, Lipsitt led the orchestra in a rendition of Jingle Bells, accompanied by the string ensemble from the Pope John Paul II Catholic Academy. Members of the Boston City Singers helped to lead a memorable sing-along to conclude the evening's show, which was hosted by novelist and TV personality Kim McLarin.
The performance lasted about one hour and 15 minutes and drew a crowd of about 500 people to the theatre. Tickets were priced at $5-10 to attract families from the neighborhood. The Boston Classical Orchestra intends to make the Strand Theatre its second home, according to executive director Sean Roberts, a resident of nearby Jones Hill. Support for the concert has come from the Mayor’s Office of Arts, Tourism & Special Events and Boston Main Streets, along with corporate sponsors such as Mt. Washington Bank. Read more
The neighborhood’s Christmas celebrations will get the marquee treatment on Monday as the Boston Classical Orchestra and local partners stage a special holiday concert at the landmark Strand Theatre. The family-friendly show is billed as a neighborhood-wide effort, with special performances by the Boston City Singers and the the Pope John Paul II Catholic Academy Choir and string ensembles.
Sean Roberts, a Jones Hill resident who serves as the executive director of the Boston Classical Orchestra, says that the show will fill a void in the neighborhood’s celebration of the Christmas season.
“We want to provide a special, family occasion for residents in Dorchester and surrounding neighborhoods, a true Dorchester-wide event,” Roberts said. “Tickets are priced at only $5 for unreserved seating, so everyone can come and choose their seat.” Read more
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
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
A Boston Licensing Board hearing turned heated this morning when City Councilor Maureen Feeney accused the new owner of the Ka-Carlos building at 33 Hancock St. of lying to residents and city officials about his plans for the building.
Stephen Bingham, who bought the building at auction after Ka-Carlos closed following a triple shooting that left two dead, said he wants to open "a family restaurant."
But Feeney told licensing-board Chairman Michael Connolly that Bingham's license application simply had too many discrepancies. Read more