That’s the message from Encore Boston Harbor
President Bob DeSalvio when it comes to the preparations for the opening of the
resort casino on June 23. DeSalvio said that hiring a majority of the workers
to train for three weeks, as compared to the one-week average in the industry,
will be worth every penny.
“In general we are in a very good position
right now,” he said on Tuesday. “I feel like the construction, the hiring and
the trainings are all coming together extremely well. Right now the number one
item is about working on training and role playing on our own people in
preparation for the arrival of our first guests. It was good to get the team in
early and have the mass orientation on June 3. The access to the building was
critical to making sure we had the necessary time to prepare.”
DeSalvio said many in the industry will
bring on most employees about a week ahead of opening. Some might stretch that
to two weeks. However, a three week, 20-day solid training period is unique.
“We have a full 20 days to completely
fine-tine and have five-star service levels and standards,” he said. “That’s a
big part of what we do. It’s an expanded preparation time, but that’s important
to us…Literally having three weeks is pretty unique, but it’s worth every penny
because we’ll get to thoroughly train our team members to that we can expect to
deliver a flawless opening.”
Right now, workers are busy role playing,
helping one another, and collaborating with helpers from the Las Vegas resorts
– who are initiating the new workers from the Boston area into the company
“The next couple days we start very
intensive role playing preparations with our team – we’ll eat at the
restaurants and walk all of the corridors,” he said. “We plan to occupy every
single guest room before guests arrive…We want to make sure we’ve got
everything covered. By occupying the rooms, it gives us a chance to see everything
to make sure it’s working – the air conditioners, the lighting and the TV. It’s
a great way to get it done instead of waiting for guests to come in and have to
bring something like that to our attention.”
That also goes for the kitchens – cooking
meals for practice to make sure everything is working correctly and all of the
materials are in place for when the first guests arrive.
DeSalvio said a good deal of what is
happening now on the construction front is interior work and bringing in food
and retail supplies.
The construction phase, he said, is done for
the most part – meaning that the largest single-phase construction project in
the state’s history came in on time.
“Construction is winding down,” he said.
“They’re doing minor landscaping and doing some interior finish work. But for
the most part, the construction has been completed.”
One of the more stunning aspects of the
building, DeSalvio said, was the sunset views of the Mystic River Valley facing
west. While the Boston skyline views are tremendous, DeSalvio said the views of
the Mystic are special because they have never been seen before.
“One of the unique aspects of the building
is the views from various angles, especially the higher up to you go – are
unlike anything we’ve ever seen because there has never been a building that
big in Everett,” he said. “Looking west from the tower up the Mystic River,
there’s a sense of the real beauty of that area.”
said the team has done outstanding work on all aspects of the resort, and he
said they are very much ready for their opening in less than two weeks.
On June 4, Chelsea Police reunited a missing
10-year-old Chelsea girl with her parents on after the Kelly school student
told officers she fell asleep on the MBTA bus she takes home from school.
The juvenile told officers she ended up at the Maverick Square MBTA station
where she became confused and proceeded onto another MBTA bus that she was
unfamiliar with. At some point, she left the bus in the area of North Shore
Road in Revere where she began to walk on the busy road. During this time,
the parents responded to the police station to report their daughter missing.
Officers used the young girl’s cell phone to “ping” her location in Revere.
While Chelsea, Transit and Revere Police were searching the area the young girl
was located by an MBTA bus driver who transported her to the Wonderland “T”
Station in Revere. She was then reunited back with her parents at Chelsea
Police Headquarters. Chelsea officers are working with the parents and the
school in addressing future transportation options for the young girl who was
unharmed in the incident.
Struggle Without a Shirt
On May 27, at 1:20 a.m., officers responded
to the area 176 Clark Ave. for a report of a disturbance. The report to
officers was that witnesses were reporting they saw a male who appeared drunk,
with no t-shirt on, fighting with a female who was preventing him from getting
into the home. Officers struggled with the male in attempting to calm him
down. After a struggle to restrain him, he was placed into custody. The
male was transported to CHA Everett for evaluation prior to being booked at
Eber Orantes, 33, of 176 Clark Ave., was
charged with disorderly conduct, assault with a dangerous weapon and resisting
Threated With Strange Weapon
On May 30, at 9:20 p.m., officers responded
in the area of Normandy Road at Garfield Avenue for a report of a road rage incident
involving a firearm. Officers were given the description of the vehicle in
question. It was said to be a black Honda Accord operating on Normandy Road.
CPD officers located the vehicle and found the subject to have a modified
instrument that resembled a firearm. The victim in the other vehicle provided
other information that led to the male being arrested.
Tanvir Zahir, 21, of Stoneham, was charged
with violating the motor vehicle ordinance, violating the dangerous weapons
ordinance, and two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.
Swallowed Bag of Crack
On May 31, at 9:30 a.m., Officers
observed a male party known to them from previous drug offenses walking with an
unknown male on Chestnut Street near Fourth Street. The officers believed they
then witnessed a drug transaction between the two. The subject admitted he
swallowed a bag of “crack “ when he was approached by the officers. A search of
his person uncovered more drugs and he was placed under arrest. The second male
was identified and placed under arrest on the scene. The subject who ingested
the narcotics was transported to CHA Everett for evaluation.
Argenis Felipe, 33, of East Boston, was
charged with possession to distribute a Class B drug (crack), conspiracy, and
distribution of a Class B drug.
On May 31, at 11 a.m., officers were
dispatched to the parking lot of 260 Clark Ave. for a fight in progress.
Officers observed two tenants of the building in an argument. One tenant
accused the second of threatening him with a box cutter. That item was
retrieved and that male was taken into custody.
Jody Robinson, 59, of 260 Clark Ave., was
charged with assault with a dangerous weapon.
Swerved at Pedestrian
On June 1, at 9:10 a.m., an off-duty CPD
officer was traveling on Hawthorne Street towards Chester Avenue when he saw a
male party crossing the street. The officer noticed a Toyota Corolla
laying on his horn and then began to intentionally drive towards the male party
that was crossing the road. The victim had to jump four to six feet to
his rear to avoid being struck by the vehicle.
The officer believed the operator swerved in
his direction deliberately trying to strike the victim, which could have
resulted in serious injuries. CPD officers responded to assist and the male
operator was placed in custody for assault with a dangerous weapon.
35, of East Boston, was charged with failing to slow, reckless operation, and
assault with a dangerous weapon (car).
MS-13 Member Sentenced for Unlawful Possession of a Firearm
An MS-13 member was sentenced last week for
being an illegal alien in possession of a firearm and ammunition.
Nery Rodriguez Diaz, 19, a Salvadoran
national who resided in Chelsea, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge F.
Dennis Saylor IV to 14 months in prison and three years of supervised release.
Diaz will also be subject to deportation proceedings upon completion of his
On May 22, 2018, Diaz and another MS-13
member, Elmer Alfaro Hercules, were arrested in possession of loaded firearms
in Bremen Street Park in East Boston, a location where numerous MS-13 gang
members have been observed and where gang-on-gang violence frequently
The investigation revealed that Diaz and
Hercules each separately and unlawfully entered the United States in 2014 as
unaccompanied minors. Both Diaz and Hercules were charged federally for being
aliens in possession of a firearm and ammunition.
previously pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 13 months in prison and three
years of supervised release. Hercules will also be subject to deportation
proceedings after the completion of his sentence.
Chelsea Gang Leader Sentenced to Over 15 years in Prison
A leader of the East Side Money Gang (ESMG)
was sentenced last week in federal court in Boston on racketeering, drug
trafficking and firearms trafficking charges.
Angel “Stackz” Mejia Zelaya, 24, of Chelsea,
was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns to 188 months in
prison and five years of supervised release. In January 2019, Mejia
pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to conduct enterprise affairs through
a pattern of racketeering activity, commonly known as RICO, one count of
conspiracy to distribute cocaine and cocaine base, and one count of engaging in
the business of dealing in firearms without a license.
Mejia was a leader in the ESMG, a violent,
Chelsea-based street gang, which was responsible for various violent crimes,
including multiple shootings, and drug distribution in Chelsea and surrounding
communities. Mejia, as well as other members and associates of the gang, were
also actively involved in illegally selling firearms, including handguns and
shotguns, in and around Chelsea.
Mejia participated in multiple, gang-related
On July 5, 2015, Mejia was involved in a
shooting targeting a rival gang member on a public street in Chelsea, which did
not result in the rival gang member being injured. On March 29, 2016, Mejia and
his lieutenant, Josue “Superbad” Rodriguez, agreed to provide a .22 caliber
revolver to a third ESMG member, Brandon “Big Baby” Baez, so that Baez could
“spank” with it – meaning that he could use it against rivals of ESMG. On April
3, 2016, in Revere, Baez used the revolver to attempt to murder two men believed
to be members/associates of a rival gang as they sat in a vehicle. Both men
were wounded, but not killed. Baez called Mejia immediately after the shooting
to inform Mejia that Baez had just shot two men. Mejia further admitted to
supplying other ESMG gang members with firearms, including a juvenile who then
accidently shot another person.
While Mejia was the leader of the ESMG, the
gang dealt substantial quantities of drugs, including cocaine and cocaine base
(crack), in Chelsea and surrounding communities. Mejia was responsible for the
distribution of at least a kilogram of cocaine base. Mejia and his gang
subordinates stored drugs at and distributed drugs from a residence on Tudor
Street in Chelsea and another residence in the Chelsea area. The gang kept
handguns at both locations to protect their drug operations, as well as for
other gang activities.
of Mejia arose out of an investigation of various street gangs, including the
18th Street Gang, ESMG and the Boylston Street Gang, which were responsible for
fueling a gun and drug pipeline across a number of cities and towns in eastern
Massachusetts. During the course of the investigation, more than 70 firearms
The new shuttle service throughout Chelsea
and Everett has launched, and dubbed the Neighborhood Runner, the service began
operating on Monday, June 3.
“We started service on Monday, June 3, at 5
a.m.,” said Jim Folk, director of Transportation for Encore Boston Harbor.
“Now, it is running 24/7, 365 days a year. It starts its route at the Chelsea
Market Basket every 20 minutes on the 20…I really think it’s going to be a
successful route. It’s great for our employees and guests, and it’s great for
Everett because it gives them a new connection to the Silver Line for the
airport, Seaport and even South Station.”
The new Neighborhood Runner stops at Market
Basket (Chelsea), then goes through Everett to Everett Square (outside
Braza’s), then to the GE site on Air Force Road, and finally to the Encore
Employees reported to the resort on Monday,
and Folk said the Runner has become popular already with the new employees
looking to get to work from the neighborhoods, or to catch transit lines that
run near the new stops.
“Believe it or not, we have picked up some
passengers even though we haven’t advertised the Runner yet to the public,”
Folk said. “Our employees are aware of it and many are actually taking it to
and from the resort. We had a good amount of people on Monday that used it. We
expect more and more people as time goes on. I think it will really be
The 26-passenger Runner is made by Grech,
and has a lot of extras.
The interior has leather seating and large
cupholders, along with plenty of space. It is 100 percent ADA compliant and
also has video screens for entertainment.
Folk said right now they are sticking to the
four stops on the route, but he said they aren’t ruling out expanding the stops
in Everett and Chelsea once the resort opens.
“We think it’s a
great, great alternative for the folks in Everett and our employees and guests
coming to Encore,” he said.
A U.S. citizen appeared last week in federal
court in Boston after being extradited from Brazil in connection with a $2
million wire fraud scheme.
Christopher Morris, 48, formerly of Lowell
and Chelsea, was extradited from Brazil and arrived in Boston last week. Morris
was detained following an initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge M.
Page Kelley. In November 2014, Morris was indicted on four counts of wire fraud
and 12 counts of unlawful monetary transactions. Since 2013, Morris had been
living in Uruguay and Brazil.
The indictment alleges that Morris, an accounting
professional, participated in a wire fraud scheme targeting his employer, PBS
Distribution (PBSd), a media distribution business with operations in Allston
and elsewhere. Morris’ position gave him access to U.S. mail addressed to
PBSd’s accounting department, including checks payable to PBSd. According to
the indictment, beginning as early as January 2008 and continuing through
September 2012, Morris took more than $2 million in checks under the guise of
depositing them into PBSd’s bank accounts, but he instead endorsed them to
himself and deposited them into a personal bank account. Morris allegedly used
his access to PBSd’s accounting system to conceal the theft by, among other
steps, fraudulently causing credits to be issued to the accounts of customers
whose checks he stole, and by causing PBSd’s general ledger to be altered to
show that the same customers had made payments. It is further alleged that
Morris spent the proceeds of the scheme on a lavish lifestyle that included
year-long apartment rentals in New York City’s Greenwich Village and Tribeca
neighborhoods; the down payment, purchase and upkeep of a waterfront
condominium in Chelsea; and luxury clothing, dining and travel, including a
$16,000 two-week South American cruise.
The charge of wire
fraud provides for a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, three
years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000 on each count. The
government expects to move to dismiss the charges of unlawful monetary
transactions under the Rule of Specialty, a doctrine of international law that
permits prosecution upon extradition only as to charges authorized by the
For more than a few Chelsea residents, the
Soldiers’ Home red and white checkers water tower defined home.
It was something they saw from planes,
looked at in the rearview mirror when headed over the Mystic/Tobin Bridge, and
could see from nearly every corner of the city.
Now, it’s only a memory.
The Chelsea Soldiers’ Home water tower came
down on Wednesday afternoon, May 29, about 1 p.m. after many months of waiting
for the right conditions to knock down the tower so as to make way for the $199
million state-of-the-art veterans hospital and living center.
Both could not exist in tandem, and after a
long and passionate discussion last year about the tower, the community
conceded to let the tower go.
About 9 a.m. on Wednesday, the demolition
crew moved in to prepare a 200 foot perimeter at Malone Park for the tower to
fall onto. That took several hours, but then about 12:30, work began on the
legs. One leg on the north side was sawn off, and then the tower was simply
It came down with a huge thud, but remained
The company that took it down also had most
recently taken down the water tower at the Weymouth Air Station on the South
Many people from the community gathered to watch the tower come down, and television crews from the Boston media were out in force with cameras and helicopters. Afterward, Superintendent of the Chelsea Soldiers Home Cheryl Lussier Poppe addressed the media, explaining that the tower removal will allow for improvements and construction to the new veterans home that will replace the aging Quigley Hospital.
The Silvio Cella Family Foundation announced
the 2019 recipients of its annual grant program, and this year’s recipients
include Chelsea High School.
Annually, four high school football programs
are selected to each receive a $3,000 grant to help improve playing conditions,
increase player safety and participation, purchase needed equipment and build
teamwork, pride and confidence. Since established in 2010, the Silvio Cella
Family Foundation has donated over $100,000 to high school football programs
The 2019 recipients of the Silvio Cella
Family Foundation grants are:
North: Chelsea High School
South: Southeastern Regional High School
Central: South High Community School
West: Pittsfield High School
“This much needed grant money will help
these football programs to improve player safety and upgrade facilities and
equipment, and build a sense of teamwork and community in these schools,” said
Michael Cella, president, Silvio Cella Family Foundation. “We are honored
to carry on my Dad’s legacy and support high school football in Massachusetts.”
Each school receives $3,000 from the Silvio
Cella Family Foundation, to be used to support their football programs, per
MIAA (Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association) guidelines.
Previous recipients of the Silvio Cella
Family Foundation grants: Greater Lawrence Tech, Nauset Regional, Burncoat,
South Hadley (2018); Tech Boston Academy, Worcester North, Holyoke, Tri County
Regional Vocational Technical High School (2017); Brighton, Milton, Oxford,
Pathfinder RVT High School (2016); Medford, Weymouth, Bartlett, Hoosac Valley
High School (2015); Greater Lowell Technical, Cathedral, Doherty, Monument
Mountain Regional High School (2014); Northeast Metro Tech, Randolph,
Blackstone-Millville Regional, Smith Vocational & Agricultural (2013);
Lawrence, Jeremiah Burke (Boston), Millis, Ware High School (2012); Framingham,
Fitchburg, Pioneer Valley Regional High School (2011); as well as special
donations to Revere High, where Coach Cella served as athletic director and
head football coach for 49 years.
Cella was an innovator on the field, and a champion for athletes and coaches.
He motivated his players and those around him to give 100%, not only in
football but especially in the classroom, at home and in the community,” Cella
added. “The Silvio Cella Family Foundation is committed to player safety, and
to preserving the integrity of high school football for generations to
Chelsea student earns
Brittany Fitzgibbon, a teacher at Chelsea
High School in Chelsea, MA has been awarded a James Madison Fellowship by the
James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation of Alexandria, VA in its
twenty-eighth annual fellowship competition. A total of 53 Fellowships were
awarded in 2019. James Madison
Fellowships support further study of American history by college graduates who
aspire to become teachers of American history, American government, and social
studies in the nation’s secondary schools, as well as by experienced secondary
school teachers of the same subjects.
Named in the honor of the fourth president
of the United States and acknowledged “Father of the Constitution and Bill of
Rights,” the fellowship will fund up to $24,000 of Ms. Fitzgibbon’s course of
study toward a master’s degree. That program must include a concentration of
courses on the history and principles of the United States Constitution.
Ms. Fitzgibbon was selected for a James
Madison Fellowship in competition with applicants from Massachusetts.
Additional fellowships were awarded in each of the states. The
fellowship-funded by income from a trust fund in the Treasury of the United
States and from additional private gifts, corporate contributions, and
foundation grants – requires its recipient to teach American history or social
studies in a secondary school for at least one year for each year of fellowship
support. The award is intended to recognize promising and distinguished
teachers, to strengthen their knowledge of the origins and development of
American constitutional government, and thus to expose the nation’s secondary
school students to accurate knowledge of the nation’s constitutional heritage.
Founded by an act of Congress in 1986, the James
Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation is an independent agency of the
Executive Branch of the Federal Government. In addition to offering
fellowships, the Foundation undertakes other activities relating to secondary
school education about the Constitution’s history. For more information please
In a journey that has zero time available
for a detour, Wynn Resorts seemingly got off the freeway to smell the flowers
Now, however, they seem to be back on the
road to an opening on June 23, with President Bob DeSalvio telling the
Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) on Wednesday that Wynn will definitely
open the resort at 10 a.m. June 23 – with the talks last Friday about a sale
now being a distant memory.
Just when it seemed like the road was clear
for cruising into the June 23 opening – preparing the building and conducting
massive, quick trainings for workers in all facets of the operation – the
company announced in a joint statement last Friday that it was considering an
offer from MGM International (which operates the Springfield casino) to buy
Encore Boston Harbor.
It was out of the blue, and few locally were
informed of the new development in the constant roller coaster ride that has
been the norm with the Wynn marriage in Massachusetts.
“Over the past several weeks, we have
engaged in conversations around the potential sale of Encore Boston Harbor,”
read the joint statement from Wynn and MGM – a statement that came from Wynn.
“They are very preliminary and of the nature that publicly traded corporations
like ours often engage in, and in fact when opportunities such as this are
presented, we are required to explore.”
Then, late on Tuesday night, that all seemed
to change with dueling statements from MGM and Wynn.
“Wynn Resorts prides itself on the design,
development and operation of the world’s best integrated resorts,” read the
statement. “At times, world class assets attract the attention of others and
our board takes seriously its fiduciary duty to review such
interest. After careful consideration we have agreed to cease
discussions with MGM Resorts. We remain committed to opening and operating
Encore Boston Harbor as only Wynn Resorts is able to do.”
It was as if the company risked it all on a
roll of the dice, lost it all, and then won it all back.
The matter became quite stressful because
the talk of a sale gets into murky, and time consuming territory.
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC)
said it was preparing for a June 23 opening despite any talk of a sale. They
said the $35 million fine for the company, the $500,000 fine for CEO Matt
Maddox, and the other stipulations for training and the like continue to stand.
“The Commission’s written decision stands,”
read a statement from the MGC. “The deadline for fine payment and notice of
appeal is May 31. The MGC continues to focus its efforts on the
significant amount of regulatory preparations required before Encore’s
The MGC also provided a list of things that
would be required under law in order to sell such a property under state law –
all of which add up to a lengthy process that could include the purchaser
re-applying for the gaming license. At a minimum, written notice has to be
given and a number of hearings and meetings must take place that look like they
could take as long as six months. Likewise, one operator cannot own more than
one license in the state.
Just how much of the former sale talk is
inside baseball that has a purpose few will ever know, and how much of it was a
real possibility, is hard to gauge at this point.
Few, it seems, know anything about what Wynn
Resorts really plans to do.
MGC approves extended 4
a.m. liquor license for Encore
The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) approved
an extended 4 a.m. liquor license for Encore Boston Harbor by a vote of 4-1 on
Wednesday, May 22.
The MGC had discussed the matter at its May
6 meeting in-depth, as well as the other numerous regular 2 a.m. closing
licenses that the casino requested.
A comment period was initiated with Mayor
Martin Walsh and Councilor Lydia Edwards voicing displeasure with the idea of
granting the extension, which is only for those involved in active gaming. The
last call is 3:30 a.m.
In the end, it was a unanimous vote by the
School Committee to enter into negotiations with Almudena Abeyta as the next
superintendent of schools, although it took a handful of votes to reach that
The Committee met Thursday, May 9 to
consider three finalists to replace Mary Bourque, who is retiring this year
after more than 30 years in the Chelsea schools.
While each of the three finalists for
superintendent garnered some support from Committee members Thursday night,
Abeyta, currently the assistant superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction, and
Assessment for the Somerville Public schools, had the majority of the support
from the board throughout four votes.
While there was not unanimous support for
Abeyta from the get-go, Committee members universally praised the high quality
of all three finalists. In addition to Abeyta, the other two finalists were
Anthony Parker, the Weston High School principal, and Ligia Noriega-Murphy,
assistant superintendent of secondary schools in the Boston Public Schools.
“Chelsea is very lucky tonight to have three
outstanding candidates,” said At-Large School Committee member Frank DePatto.
“The city is in good hands with any of the candidates.”
DePatto noted that having three highly
qualified candidates did make for a difficult decision for the Committee
members, a sentiment echoed by District Five School Committee member Henry
Wilson – who just joined the Committee a few weeks ago.
“I changed my mind and then I changed my
mind again,” said Wilson. “Today, I did a lot of praying.”
District Seven School Committee member Kelly
Garcia said Abeyta was the candidate who spoke most to her as an educator.
“She answered every question with calmness, urgency,
confidence, and experience,” said Garcia.
In the first round of voting, it looked like
Abeyta was in as the choice of the School Committee with a 5-3 vote. The
Committee’s ninth member, Rosemarie Carlisle, could not attend the meeting
because of a medical issue.
However, after some legal consultation, it
was determined that the vote was taken after only one name was entered into
nomination. Under procedure, the Committee should have entered all candidates
being considered into nomination.
During that round of voting, Abeyta fell
just short of a majority, garnering four votes, with Noriega-Murphy getting
three and Parker grabbing one vote. A second round with the top-two vote
getters ended with a 5-3 majority for Abeyta, enough to secure approval.
DePatto, who voted for Noriega-Murphy during
the open nominations, made the motion to make the vote unanimous for Abeyta.
Even though he
backed Noriega-Murphy, after the meeting, DePatto said he was happy with the
outcome of the meeting.
The Chelsea Night Market plans is smoking,
and that’s because the first installment on June 8 will have fire jugglers,
amongst musicians, comedians and a full slate of food and craft vendors.
Unveiled earlier this year, the Night Market
is part of the City’s Chelsea Prospers campaign and looks to add activity to
the downtown area on summer evenings with a creative and exciting market in the
Luther Place municipal parking lot once a month.
As the plans come together for the first
Market, Downtown Coordinator Mimi Graney said she couldn’t be happier with the
way things have come together.
“It’s going amazingly,” she said. “We’ve got
this really cool Turkish band that’s playing on the first day. We will also
have the Boston Circus Guild coming and they will have two performances. There
will be folks on stilts, jugglers, people juggling fire and close interactive
magicians. They will have a 20-minute fire performance during the evening.
Think juggling things on fire with incredible music behind it.”
Graney said she couldn’t yet reveal the
vendors, but they have 13 signed up so far that will be a great mix of exciting
items and food.
“I’m really excited so many local businesses
and food businesses are looking to take part,” she said. “We’re not doing food
trucks because we want an intimate atmosphere with open BBQs and food service.”
All of that will be flanked with creative
lighting that is meant to ‘wow’ visitors as they come via the newly-refurbished
“Our plan is to encourage people to come
into the Market using the Chelsea Walk and it will be like ‘kapow,’” she said.
“They’ll be hit with the lights and music and circus acts and vendors.”
There will also be community entries into
the Market, with a group of comedians participating and the Chelsea Pride
Committee having a booth.
“The Pride Committee will be having their
flag raising the day afterward, but they will have a booth at the Market too,”
she said. “They plan to use grease body paint to have people write things on
themselves that they are proud of. I love a lot of the community vendors are
trying to do new and different things instead of just standing behind a table.”
The first Night
Market will be on June 8 from 7-10 p.m. with a rain date of June 15.
Everett might be all-in
on the 4 a.m. extending liquor license for Encore Boston Harbor, but
surrounding cities like Chelsea aren’t so excited.
In comments this week,
Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and Chelsea City Manager Tom Ambrosino said they
weren’t in favor of Encore’s request for a limited 4 a.m. liquor license from
the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC). The request is currently under
review and in a public comment period. It would only apply to those actively
engaged in gaming, and the last call would be 3:30 a.m. Most other liquor
licenses have a 2 a.m. cutoff.
Chelsea City Manager Tom
Ambrosino said he doesn’t support the idea, seeing no advantage to Chelsea in
having a luxury casino open late just a few hundred yards from the Chelsea city
“That would have no
positive benefit to the City of Chelsea, so it would not be something I would
favor,” he said.
Mayor Martin Walsh agreed
with those sentiments as well.
“When the Legislature
wrote the bill to have casino gaming, it was a 2 a.m. liquor license, which I
voted on,” said Mayor Walsh. “I think that at this point in time, we should get
the casino open, and see how the 2 a.m. license works. If there is a need, if
there is a desire, or if there is a concern that it hampers the business, then
I think we should explore the opportunity of maybe going until 3 a.m. or 4 a.m.
But right now, at opening, closing at 2 a.m. – let’s see what it looks like.
You can’t say there are concerns there until it’s open. I would request we wait
and then have a full vetting. Right now it needs to be opened and see how it
all works with a 2 a.m. closing.”
Meanwhile, Everett Mayor
Carlo DeMaria said the later closing hour is critical to the casino being an
international destination, as no such 2 a.m. rules apply in other locales where
Wynn Resorts operates.
“The City of Everett is
committed to supporting the success of the Encore Boston Harbor Resort,” he said.
“In order for it to be a destination for an international clientele, the resort
needs to be able to offer these clients a cocktail during the time they
play. At 2 a.m., all the bars and restaurants will be closed, and drinks
will only be served to those on the casino floor by a trained and certified
server. Over-serving and irresponsible behavior will not be tolerated.”
He added that State
Police, Everett Police and Encore security would be on site during the late
hours and transportation services would be available for guests.
Walsh said he realizes
that the Springfield casino already has a 4 a.m. license, but he also added
that the circumstances are different in Everett. He said there are a lot of
other cities and towns in the immediate area without such licenses. He said
there has to be a dialog with everyone after the first six months.
“I’m not going to assume
they’ll do 4 a.m.,” he said. “I’ll ask the Gaming Commission to be respectful
of the surrounding cities and towns and see how the process works and see how
the casino does in its first six months. Then we’ll revisit it and have a
conversation and dialog at this point.
“We filed legislation (in
Boston) a few years ago to open some of the bars and clubs later,” he
continued. “So, that’s why I think you need a six-month vetting. Let’s assume
for a moment the Gaming Commission grants the 4 a.m. license, that puts a lot
of businesses in surrounding cities and town, including Boston, at a serious
disadvantage. I think let’s wait and see what the 2 a.m. does…It’s not simply
opening the casino until 4 a.m. It’s about having a conversation about other
cities and towns and their licenses and what would happen in their
The MGC is expected to talk more about the 4 a.m. license application at
its next meeting on May 22.