News Briefs


The Castle Island Brewing beer garden proposed for under the Expressway at the Ink Underground park in the South End has been removed from consideration after Boston Police apparently had concerns about serving alcohol near such a high-volume roadway.

The beer garden came into the picture last spring, and after a rocky start with neighbors, ended up gaining support to move forward. However, there never was an application for any City permits, and now the idea is off the table in the Ink Underground location. The proposed area for the beer garden was on the back side of the park towards the river.

Ted Tye, of National Development, said the plan wasn’t going to work for this season, so it was pulled and will be announced at an alternate area.

“There has been incredible community support – and disappointment – but the timing was not going to work for this season,” he said. “We are working with Castle Island on an alternate location to be announced.”


Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced that applications for the 2018 Neighborhood Slow Streets program are now available. The Neighborhood Slow Streets program is a community-based effort to reduce speeds and improve the quality of life on Boston’s local streets. Neighborhoods associations, community groups, faith-based institutions and other organized groups of neighbors are invited to apply to the program.

“Boston residents want safe residential streets and the Neighborhood Slow Streets initiative is specifically designed to meet this goal by using traffic calming equipment and techniques to control speeding,” said Mayor Walsh. “Neighborhood Slow Streets is a signature Vision Zero investment in our neighborhoods. It complements the work that BTD and other City agencies are undertaking each day to make our neighborhood streets safe and welcoming for Boston residents.”

All completed applications will be evaluated using the same objective criteria.  The top-scoring three to five neighborhoods will be selected, and the community process and design of each new zone is expected to be completed by early 2020.  Applications must be submitted, or postmarked and mailed, by no later than Friday, Aug. 24, 2018.

Please note that returning applicants only need to supply contact information and signatures from community members, and returning applicants may submit a new map if they choose to make adjustments to their zone.

Neighborhood Slow Streets prioritizes areas with the most need for traffic calming. In 2018, the Boston Transportation Department will select from the new applications submitted three to five new residential neighborhoods where the program will next be implemented.  The evaluation criteria will ensure that these neighborhoods:

  • Are home to higher percentages of youth, older adults, and people with disabilities;
  • Experience higher numbers of traffic crashes per mile that resulted in an EMS response;
  • Include, or border, community gathering places such as public libraries, community centers, schools, and parks;
  • Support existing and planned opportunities for walking, bicycling, and access to the MBTA or other forms of public transit; and
  • Are feasible for the City of Boston to implement.


  • The Worcester Square Area Neighborhood Association (WSANA) will meet on Tuesday, July 24, at 7 p.m. in the Newton Pavilion, 88 East Newton St., second floor.
  • The Ellis South End Neighborhood Association board of directors will have a meeting on Tuesday, July 24, at 6:30 p.m. in 66 Berkeley St.
  • Castle Square Tenants Organization (CSTO) will hold their 22nd annual National Night Out event in the Village Court (464 Tremont St.) for the entire South End on Tuesday, Aug. 7, 5-8 p.m. Mayor Martin Walsh is expected to attend.
  • Festival Betances will take place at the Villa Victoria in the South End on July 21 and 22 from noon-9 p.m. each day. The festival celebrates Latino culture and features excellent Latin music and even a Greased Pole contest at 1 p.m. on Sunday. Kids and family activities will be in O’Day Playground.
  • The OneHood Basketball league will play on Friday, July 20 and Weds., July 25, in the Blackstone Community Center courts (outside). The games go from 6-8 p.m. and feature some fast-moving action.
  • City Councilor Michelle Wu and the Boston Ward 4 Democratic Committee will be co-hosting an ice cream social in Titus Sparrow Park on Sunday, Aug. 19, from 2-4 p.m. Join neighbors, friends, and local Democrats for good ice cream, good toppings, good weather, and good company. For more information, email Jonathan at [email protected] or Sharon at [email protected].


  • The Fenway Community is invited to a public meeting on July 19 from 6-8 p.m. to hear from Boston Parks and Recreation, Boston Police, Recovery Services, and Healthcare for the Homeless about their effort in the Back Bay Fens and how the community can contribute to safety in the neighborhood parks. The meeting is sponsored by the Fenway Civic Association and the Fenway Garden Society and will be held at the Fenway Community Center.
  • The Fenway Victory Gardens is having a Community Participation Day on Saturday, July 21, from 9 am to 12 noon.  This is an opportunity for members to satisfy their service hours and for other community volunteers to clean, weed, and turn compost. Coffee and snacks are provided before 9 am. Are you a City of Boston resident and interested in joining our waitlist for a garden plot?  If so, send an e-mail to [email protected] with your name, e-mail,  phone number, and waitlist request!


The Tito Puente Latin Music Series, a partnership of IBA and Berklee College of Music is back this summer at O’Day Playground, South End, for salsa and more.

  • Eguie Castrillo Y Orquestra Mar Del Norte – Grammy Award Winner and percussionist Eguie Castrillo comes with his Salsa orchestra “Mar Del Norte” to pay tribute to the Salsa of the 70s and 80s. on July 19, 7 p.m., in O’Day Playground.


Have you ever wanted to learn how to read Hebrew? Now is the perfect time!
With the High Holidays just around the corner, learning how to read Hebrew is the perfect summer activity and will help make your holiday services much more meaningful.
‘Read it in Hebrew’ is our new, cutting-edge Hebrew reading crash course is taking the Jewish world by storm. The flashcard based language course developed by the Jewish Learning Institute, promises users that they can learn to read Hebrew in only four weeks if they follow the program. In addition to reading skills, students get a glimpse into the holiness and depth of the Hebrew language, including brief kabalistic explanations of the Hebrew letters.
The course begins Monday, July 30, from 8-9 p.m. for four consecutive Monday evenings at Chabad of Downtown Boston – 16 Piedmont St.
Registration required. . Cost for the 4 session course is: $100. Space is limited.


Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Women’s Workforce Council (BWWC) Co-Chairs, Cathy Minehan and Evelyn Murphy, announced the appointment of Shereen Shermak as the new executive director of the BWWC.

Shermak is a South End resident.

The BWWC is a public-private partnership between Mayor Walsh and the Greater Boston business community tasked with closing the gender pay gaps in Boston by removing visible and invisible barriers to advancement for women in the workforce.

“I look forward to leveraging my background working in both the corporate and government spaces to make Boston the best city for working women of all backgrounds and races,” said Shermak. “I believe strongly in data-centric approaches to understanding what types of interventions work to advance women, and in creating return on investment for participating companies as part of the process.”

As Director, Shermak will focus on recruiting more employers to sign the 100% Talent Compact and engaging them in actions that advance gender equity in the workforce. Shermak will lead and oversee all operations of the Council’s work, including the annual best practices conference and quarterly membership briefings in which Compact signers are invited to share strategies and tools.

Prior to this role, Shermak served as an angel investor and an advisor to start-ups and small businesses in the early stages of their growth. She has a wide variety of both public and private sector experience, including having served as the Executive Director, Operations, Division of Economic and Financial Opportunity for the Department of Small Business Services at the City of New York.Shermak earned a Bachelor of Science in engineering from Duke University, a masters in business administration from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management, and a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.


The Friends of Titus Sparrow Park have once again brought a slate of great summer concerts to the South End park. Below is the remaining lineup of concerts for the summer – including kids’ concerts in the mornings.

  • Weds. evenings at 6:30 p.m. (unless noted):

July 25, Big Ol’ Dirty Bucket

August 1, Booty Vortex

August 8, Pan Neubean Steel

August 15, Gretchen and the Pickpockets

August 22, Slim Jim and the Mad Cows (6:15 p.m. start)

August 29, TBD (6 p.m. start)

  • Childrens’ Concerts, Tuesdays at 10 a.m. (rain location, unless noted, basement of Union United Methodist)

July 24, Karen K & the Jitterbugs

July 31, Vanessa Trien

August 7, Kira Helper

August 14, Wayne Potash (no rain location)



The Worcester Square Area Neighborhood Association (WSANA) will have the Leah Randazzo Quartet in the Square on Thursday, July 19, for their second concert of the season at 7 p.m.

The third and final concert will be on Aug. 16.



Boston Public Library’s Concerts in the Courtyard series continues through Friday, Aug. 31, bringing a range of free music to one of Boston’s most beautiful spaces during one-hour concerts throughout the summer. Concerts are held twice each week on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. and on Fridays at 12:30 p.m.

Wednesday concerts are presented in partnership with Berklee College of Music and sponsored by Brookline Bank. Concerts will be moved to the newly renovated Rabb Hall in the event of inclement weather.

  • Jah Spirit, Friday, July 20, 12:30 p.m.
  • Bonus Saturday Concert:Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras, Saturday, July 21, 12:30 p.m.
  • Jose Soto, Wednesday, July 25, 6 p.m.
  • Area 9 Quartet, Friday, July 27, 12:30 p.m.
  • Niu Raza, Wednesday, August 1, 6 p.m.
  • Properly Unprepared, Friday, August 3, 12:30 p.m.
  • Abigail Lim-Kimberg, Wednesday, August 8, 6 p.m.
  • Grupo Fantasia Quartet, Friday, August 10, 12:30 p.m.
  • Tyson Jackson, Wednesday, August 15, 6 p.m.
  • Boston Saxophone Quartet, Friday, August 17, 12:30 p.m.
  • Autumn Jones, Wednesday, August 22, 6 p.m.
  • Cold Chocolate, Friday, August 24, 12:30 p.m.
  • Mariano Escalona, Wednesday, August 29, 6 p.m.
  • Boston Lyric Opera, Friday, August 31, 12:30 p.m.

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