News Briefs

Rep. Santiago, City to Host Opiate Town Hall

Rep. Jon Santiago, in conjunction with the Mayor’s Office of Recovery Services, is hosting a Town Hall forum to discuss the opioid epidemic from 6-8 p.m. on March 7 at the McKinley Elementary School auditorium. This Town Hall aims to bring together local government officials, service providers, and residents to listen, learn about, and explore solutions to the opioid epidemic at Mass/Cass. Everyone is invited to help kick off this new and innovative approach to community engagement. Opening remarks will be made by Rep. Santiago, with City Health and Human Services Director Marty Martinez discussing the City’s approach to the epidemic.

Boston Public Schools Budget Meeting

Boston Public Schools families and teachers, including St. Stephens Youth, will set up a dramatic crime scene Thursday at a School Committee budget hearing to make it clear that they consider the current budget, with harmful cuts at many Boston schools, a crime against children.

The demonstration is being organized by the St. Stephen’s Youth Programs and the Boston Education Justice Alliance. The hearing is scheduled for 6 p.m. on March 7 at the Josiah Quincy School, 885 Washington St. Many St. Stephen’s parents have children at the Blackstone School where the proposed budget for next school year cuts six staff members, mostly among those who work with vulnerable students with disabilities.

“The current budget is crime against the kids,” said Blackstone parent Alexandra Olivero. “They won’t have everything they need in order to learn, even the basics that are essential for them to follow their dreams.”

The parents will mark off part of the audience space with caution tape, signs, and other props. Parents and teachers will also testify about the harm to students when valuable staff and programs are cut.

Conversations with Caregivers: An Education Series

The Dementia Caregiver Support Program of the MGH Division of Palliative Care and Geriatric Medicine is sponsoring its next seminar called “Conversations with Caregivers: An Education Series” on Tuesday, March 19, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Mass. General in the O’Keefe Auditorium. These seminars are for caregivers and people with dementia and focus on topics related to Dementia. The guest speaker will be Ann M. Hollis, OTR/L, DriveWise occupational therapist in the Cognitive Neurology Unit at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and her talk will focus on driving safety as it relates to individuals with dementia. Seating is limited, so call 617-724-0406 to R.S.V.P. Light refreshments will be served, and parking vouchers will be available. There is no charge for this event.

Cradles to Crayons Brings Forth Issue of Childhood Poverty with Visit to MA State House

On Thursday, Feb. 28, Cradles to Crayons’ Founder and CEO Lynn Margherio was joined by State Representatives, partners and supporters for a briefing at the State House. Co-presented by Rep. Marjorie Decker and Representative Michael Moran, the goal of the visit was to educate legislature on the issue of Clothing Insecurity, that being the lack of access to affordable, appropriate, and adequate clothing and other everyday essential items. Boston-based Cradles to Crayons (C2C) is driven by a focused and all-important goal: to make life better for children in need. More than 268,000 children ages 12 and younger in the Commonwealth are at risk of Clothing Insecurity, and C2C is working to fill this basic need gap by supplying these children with the items needed to grow and thrive. It is the only organization that mitigates Clothing Insecurity on a large scale across Massachusetts, with an annual state-wide distribution of more than 145,000 packages of clothing and essential items while working with a network of 140 social service partners. The briefing kicks off a month-long clothing and diaper collection at the State House. From Feb. 28 to March 28, the internal drive will collect new and gently used clothing (2T – Adult M) and new diapers at the C2C donation bins available.

 Back Bay Happenings

•Commonwealth Avenue Mall Lighting: Dark stretches of Commonwealth Avenue Mall will stay bright year round, thanks to the launch of a plan to design and install permanent lighting of the statues on each block of the Mall. The first project will be the Morison statue in the Spring of 2019, followed by the Garrison and Collins statues. We are currently raising funds for the Commonwealth Avenue Mall Statue Lighting. If you’d like to help, you can donate online at or by sending a check in the mail. For more information, email Margaret Pokorny at [email protected], or call 617-723-8144.

•Friends of the Public Garden Annual Meeting: Save the date for our 49th Annual Meeting on Thursday, March 28, featuring a presentation by Chris Cook, Chief of Environment, Energy, and Open Space. The meeting will be at 5:30 p.m. at the Omni-Parker House, 60 School St. R.S.V.P. to

• 261 Fearless Seeks Coaches Who Want to Help Women Change Their Lives Through Running in Boston As the cornerstone of its “Tell Her She Can” campaign to celebrate International Women’s Day, 261 Fearless will conduct an information session for women who want to learn more what it means to be a 261 Coach. Certified 261 Coaches help other women become empowered through participation in a noncompetitive, nonjudgmental running program, usually in their own town or neighborhood. The session, which is free, will be held at on March 5 in the Commonwealth Salon of the Boston Public Library in Copley Square, 700 Boylston St. It will begin at 6 p.m. Established in 2015, 261 Fearless Inc. was founded by Kathrine Switzer, who – wearing bib number 261 – became the first woman to officially run the Boston Marathon, in 1967. In 2017, Switzer again finished the marathon, directly in front of the library, to mark the 50th anniversary of her fearless and ground-breaking run. Almost three dozen runners will run Boston this year as part of 261 Fearless Team Boston, to raise funds for the organization. The global non-profit organization, with a chapter in Greater Boston, uses running as a vehicle to empower and unite women through the creation of local running clubs, education programs, communication platforms, and social running events. For more information, visit

South End Dates

•Boston Center for Youth and Families has brought back its free, Family Gym time to the Blackstone Community Center. The program is a weekly activity for children ages 3-8. It runs on Saturdays from 10-11:30 a.m. This session of Family Gym will run through April 13. In the fall the program will expand to additional BCYF community centers. For updated information or program cancellations follow @BCYFCenters.

•Eight Streets Neighborhood Association will meet on Tuesday, March 12, at Project Place, 6:45 p.m. Officers Richie Litto and Brett Loycano of the Boston Police will be on hand to talk about crime and priorities in Eight Streets. There will also be a discussion about trash management. Next meeting April 9.

•The Blackstone/Franklin Neighborhood Association will resume meeting on March 19.

•The East Berkeley Neighborhood Association (EBNA) will meeting on Tuesday, March 19, at Project Place. Agenda to be announced later.

•The South End Forum Opiate Working Group has released its meeting schedule for Winter/Spring 2019. The group will meet at 4 p.m. in the Crosstown Hilton on March 19, April 23, and May 21.

•The South End Forum will have its quarterly meeting on Tuesday, March 26, 6 p.m. at the AC Hotel, 225 Albany St. Other meetings will be May 7 and June 11.

•Tuesday, March 19: The Boston Ward 4 Democratic Committee will be meeting at 6 p.m. at the South End Library for a Q&A session with State Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz and State Reps. Jay Livingstone, Aaron Michlewitz, and Chynah Tyler, followed by a panel discussion with transit experts Chris Dempsey for Transportation for Massachusetts, Stacy Thompson of Livable Streets Alliance, and Lee Matsueda of Alternatives for Community & Environment. Email any questions to [email protected].

•The Grayken Center at BMC will hold naloxone training sessions on March 14th (11 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and May 8 (11 a.m. to 2 p.m.) in the Menino Lobby of Boston Medical Center.

Attendees will learn how to respond to an opioid overdose and fill out a request for naloxone.

•South End Writes: Dan Kelly, principal architect of the firm that began as Mitchell/Giurgola, which designed the South End library in the late 1960s, will be at the library Tuesday, March 12, at 6:30 p.m., to talk about the Philadelphia architects whose vision informed the building’s dynamic, angular profile.Mitchell/Giorgola became a prominent firm, with Romaldo Giurgola the chair of the Department of Architecture at Columbia University, before he left for Canberra, Australia, where he won the award to design the Australian Parliament building.

Fenway Times

•Emmanuel College will be holding a public meeting on March 11 at 6:30 in the Fenway Room on the second floor of the Administration Building at Emmanuel College, 400 Fenway, to discuss their upcoming plans to replace the artificial turf and track at Clemente Field in the Back Bay Fens. Proposed plans will be presented and public comments will be addressed by the project archicted, Emmanuel College officials, and the Boston Parks and Recreation department.

•The Peterborough Senior Center holds bingo at 12:30 p.m. and a Tech Café at 11 a.m. every Wednesday. Come play bingo and meet new people, or can get help with your phone or tablet/computer.

• The 44th Annual Gardeners Gathering – On Saturday, March 23 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Northeastern University Shillman Hall & The Egan Center, Join local and regional gardeners at this annual event hosted by The Trustees of the Reservations–all free and open to the public! *Over two dozen gardening, urban homesteading, and community organizing workshops**Keynote address and presentation of the Community Garden Awards by Mayor Walsh**Special guest speaker Aziz Dehkan, Executive Director of New York City Community Garden Coalition**Exhibitors’ gallery: Boston-area agriculture, gardening, and environmental organizations*A detailed itinerary will be available at a later date.

•There will be a public meeting regarding the proposed Fenway Theater at 12-28 Lansdowne St. on March 12 from 6-8 p.m. at the State Street Pavilion, 20 Jersey St.

•Fenway Park Demonstration Project Community Benefits Application: The Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA) today announced that up to $100,000 is available in community benefits for the Fenway neighborhood for temporary or permanent beautification projects. Applicants are required to submit to the BPDA a plan that describes how the proposed project will utilize the funding to produce the greatest measurable impact on the community. Projects must be fully accessible to the public. Applicants are required to submit a detailed budget and comprehensive plan describing their objectives and goals if they are to receive funding. All awards will be subject to BPDA Board authorization and chosen applicants will be required to enter into a Grant Agreement with the BPDA.As part of the Fenway Park Demonstration Project in 2013, the Red Sox agreed to contribute $1 million over 10 years to be used towards beautification efforts in the Fenway Neighborhood.

Applications are due March 26, 2019 by 5 PM. The application can be downloaded at

South End Authors Book Fest

On Thursday, April 4, from 4-8 p.m., the South End Authors Book Festival committee will be holding its 4th annual event.

The event will be held at Tent City, 130 Dartmouth St., in the Harry Dow Community Room – across the street from the Back Bay Transit Station.

This event is held every year, so that local authors can present their writings to the General Public for sale. Through the years the itinerary has been pretty much the same, authors introducing themselves and their books to the attendees. Guests intermingling with each other discussing the books being presented. All enjoying good conversation centered around a bit of light refreshments and drink. Also, sometime during the evening, a short presentation by a guest speaker. All and all everyone, authors and guests always end up having a good time.

The Festival Committee would like, this year, to offer a special invitation to all the would be young adult/teenage writers in the community to come to the festival to discuss their writings, the authors’ writings, or just writing in general.

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