Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves Rehabilitation Project Started May 14

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) began the closure of one of three southbound travel lanes on Route 1 in Chelsea and the Tobin Bridge the morning of Tuesday, May 14, snarling traffic in many parts of Everett as commuters looked for an alternative route.

The public was also reminded the one-lane northbound closure on the Tobin Bridge and Route 1 was expanded the morning of Tuesday, May 14. MassDOT anticipates that these lane closures will lead to increased travel times on sections of Route 1 northbound and southbound for drivers and MBTA bus customers for months to come.

These traffic impacts are associated with MassDOT’s Tobin Bridge/Chelsea Curves Rehabilitation Project and lane closures will remain in place for approximately two years. Additional overnight lane closures will be necessary throughout the project meaning only one lane of travel may be open during certain evening hours.

In order to accommodate travelers during this necessary construction work, MassDOT is opening the I-93 southbound carpool lane between Medford and the Zakim Bridge to all vehicles regardless of the number of occupants. This lane will continue to function as an “express lane” and vehicles in this lane on I-93 southbound will not have access to Exit 28 (Mystic Avenue) or Exit 26 (Storrow Drive).

“North Shore commuters should be aware that beginning the morning of Tuesday, May 14, a travel lane will be closed on Route 1 southbound in Chelsea, and the lane closure that is already in place on the Tobin Bridge and Route 1 northbound will be expanded,” said Highway Administrator Jonathan Gulliver last Friday. “MassDOT is carrying out this necessary rehabilitation work in order to ensure the continued use and reliability of Tobin Bridge and Chelsea Viaduct. We appreciate the cooperation and patience of the traveling public and advise everyone to make smart decisions such as considering public transit, using the appropriate technology apps to find the best route and time to travel, and building extra time into their commutes to account for potential roadway congestion.”

Travelers are also reminded of options such as free fares in the inbound direction on the MBTA Silver Line 3 bus line offered at the Chelsea, Bellingham Square, Box District, and Eastern Avenue stops for the duration of construction. In addition, public transit customers will be able to use a CharlieCard to travel between North Station and Chelsea on the Commuter Rail. The MBTA is also running additional MBTA Blue Line trains to increase capacity. These measures are all being funded by MassDOT Highway Division project funds.

MassDOT is also advising the public to also consider using the Haverhill or Newburyport/Rockport Commuter Rail lines and note that the Haverhill Line historically has parking capacity at Haverhill and Bradford stations. The Newburyport/Rockport Line historically has parking capacity at Newburyport, Salem and Lynn station. Customers can monitor @MBTA_Parking on Twitter for capacity updates and information. In addition, the MBTA has installed a digital parking capacity sign at the Blue Line Wonderland parking lot so drivers approaching the lot can get “real time” information on parking availability.

MassDOT is carrying out work on the Tobin Bridge and Chelsea Curves section of Route 1 at the same time so that the most impactful work will be completed by 2021. If the projects were done at separate times, drivers would be inconvenienced for additional years. This work will eliminate the need for weight restrictions and postings, and MassDOT will use accelerated construction techniques to shorten the overall construction time.

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Bunker Hill CC Changes Mascot

After more than a year of research, reflection and evaluation, Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) has revealed a newly designed bulldog mascot to represent the College’s Athletics program. The new BHCC Athletics Bulldog was revealed at the College Faculty/Staff Forum on March 12.

The refreshed mascot design features a running bulldog, energetic and with its eyes focused forward, seeking success in a manner congruent with the program’s mission and consistent with the uniqueness of BHCC.

The bulldog has long been the mascot of BHCC Athletics. New Director of Athletics Dr. Loreto Jackson, who joined the College in 2017, felt that the mascot needed a refresh to better align with the College’s purpose and values. “The former bulldog had many different renditions,” explained Dr. Jackson. “The designs were not unique to BHCC, and, more importantly, did not embody the philosophy of BHCC.”

The College enlisted national brand identity firm Phoenix Design Works to assist with the mascot development. After research and discussion with department stakeholders, Jackson wanted to remove the common ideas of bulldogs—that they are mean-spirited, arrogant, combative or lazy. Instead, the BHCC Bulldog should portray respect, tenacity, a competitive spirit and loyalty. Also important was a gender-neutral mascot, unrestrained by the classic bulldog spiked collar. Bunker Hill Community College is a member of the National Junior Collegiate Athletic Association (NJCAA), Division III. For more information on BHCC Athletics, please visit bhcc.edu/athletics.

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CHS Junior Wins National Title

CHS Junior Wins National Title

Bobby Goss, Eddie Richard, Richard Bradley Steve DePaulo, Katrina Hill, Drenda Carroll, Nicole Hancock and the late Anthony “Chubby” Tiro” are among the best to ever compete in the Chelsea High track programs.

Stephanie Simon has joined that illustrious group – and she’s only a junior.

Simon completed her indoor track campaign with an unprecedented accomplishment: winning the long jump championship in the Emerging Elite Division at the 2019 New Balance Nationals that was held in New York City.

Simon soared to victory with a career-best jump of 18 feet, 10.75 inches, remarkably eclipsing her previous best by seven inches.

CHS track coach Cesar Hernandez was not surprised by Simon’s victory or the dramatic way in which she achieved it.

“Stephanie had jumped 17-9 as her best in her first three attempts,” said Hernandez. “In the final, she took off to 18-10. I knew she had it in her.”

Hernandez and CHS Director of Athletics Amanda Alpert watched the drama unfold at the Nationals.

“It was exciting to watch the long jump competition,” said Hernandez. “It feels good to coach a national champion.”

Alpert, who has won national championships as a women’s professional football player and coach, said the whole scene at Nationals was “amazing.”

“To hear and see the number that Stephanie posted was amazing,” said Alpert. “It was just about her hitting the board right and she did.”

Alpert said Simon’s competitiveness and work ethic set the foundation to victory.

“Stephanie is a rarely seen combination of hard work, dedication and pure talent,” said Alpert. “She has put in so much time in to making herself better both physically and mentally. Her dedication to the sport and her craft is amazing, but a lot of that comes from the Chelsea track coaching staff. They work to instill the importance of hard work and dedication because that is what is more important and will help you succeed after high school.”

Alpert expounded on the Chelsea coaches’ contributions to the Stephanie Simon success story.

“We have an incredible coaching staff that has played a part in the team and Stephanie’s success,” said Alpert. “We are fortunate to have Cesar Hernandez, who is a Red Devil himself and competed on the collegiate level as jumper and has helped bring Stephanie to the next level.

“While Mark Martineau and Adam Aronson (both collegiate-level track athletes) are no longer coaching, Mark laid the mental frameworks for what it means to be a student athlete, and Adam had taken a lot of time to teach the athletes how to be lifters and work their way around a weight room.”

Simon and her teammates will begin their outdoor track schedule in April. There is no doubt that Stephanie Simon is on the radar of college colleges nationwide.

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Simon A Diamond on The Track Chelsea High Junior Star Heads to National Meet

Simon A Diamond on The Track Chelsea High Junior Star Heads to National Meet

At a certain point, it would be wise to just leave the Chelsea High record books in girls’ track blank until junior Stephanie Simon graduates.

Chelsea High junior Stephanie Simon is putting together another outstanding indoor track season this year, and will head to the National Championship meet in New York this weekend. When she’s not on the track, though, one might find her weaving in and out of the streets on her skateboard.

The champion jumper, runner and hurdler tends to break most school records, and then break her own records time and time again. At a certain point, her coaches say, they will probably fill it all in after she graduates.

Simon, 16, comes from a strong athletic family – and her sister, Martine – is the only runner to have ever beat her in a meet. Now, she has focused in on jumping events and has put together a string of wins during the indoor season this winter.

Recently, she took first place in the Division 2 state long jump, and took second place in the New England Championship meet. Earlier this year, at the multi-state Dartmouth Relays, she took first in the long jump and high jump.

This weekend, she will travel to New York City for the second year in a row to compete in the National Championship indoor meet.

But back in Chelsea, if you see a young lady cutting it up on a skateboard, that might be Stephanie Simon.

“When I’m not training or practicing, I like to ride a penny board,” she said. “I ride it everywhere, even to school. I think that’s why I can jump. I think that’s something every jumper has to have to be successful and that is being able to take a risk. You have to be willing to take a risk to throw yourself in a pit of sand or give it everything you have to flop up and over the high jump bar. It’s the adrenaline I like.”

Simon was born in Chelsea to Hubert and Mathilde Simon, who originally came from Haiti. Her older brother, Norbert, was also a track standout, as was her sister, Martine, who graduated last year. She said her younger brother, Emanuel, has potential in the 200 sprint.

She attended the Early Learning Center, the Berkowitz School, the Clark Avenue Middle School and has settled in at Chelsea High – where she keeps a 3.4 grade point average and is active in academics.

But her cool demeanor likely comes from having to contain herself on the track. Unlike with the sprints – where she also has great success within the conference meets – she said she has learned that a jumper (whether high jump, long jump or triple jump) needs to stay in control.

“Adrenaline is good for running, but for jumping you have to kind of put it in a bottle and use it to motivate you and counter it with technique,” she said. “For jumping and sprints, unlike distance running, it’s half mental and half physical.”

It will be a very important quality when she arrives at the New York City Armory this weekend with her coach, Cesar Hernandez. Last year was her first indoor national meet, and she said it was overwhelming.

“Last year, stepping into that building was so overwhelming,” she said, noting that there hasn’t been another Chelsea runner since Bobby Goss decades ago to go to nationals. “Every runner there was working hard and wanted to win. I didn’t do so well, but it made me even more determined to do better at the national outdoor meet in North Carolina last spring and I did.”

When she went to the Dartmouth Relays earlier this year, she said that same New York feeling came upon her, but she was able to shake it off, which is something she said she will do when she goes back to New York this week.

“I told myself it’s the same events and the same sand,” she said. “I was able to recover and move on.”

Amazingly, Simon was never a runner until she got to high school, unlike many top runners who have been at it since grade school.

“My freshman year I didn’t even run that first season,” she said. “I liked soccer. I was able to make varsity my freshman year. In the winter, I played basketball. Then I did outdoor track and I was really good at it. In track, there was so much support and it was like a big family. My freshman year I was trying to figure everything out. Everyone kept telling me I had more potential in track. I listened to them and I’m glad I stayed.”

Simon credited Coach Hernandez with helping her take bigger and bigger steps as a runner and, especially, as a jumper. As a raw athlete, she had talent, but she said Hernandez helped her to develop technique and pushed her not to just rely on athleticism.

“If he wasn’t my coach, I would not be doing what I’m doing,” she said. “He fits the kind of coach I need.”

She also credited her teammates for being a great support system.

She also credited her family, who she said has been very proud of her academically and in sports.

“In our family, everyone has their thing they are best at,” she said. “I guarantee I win at track.”

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Chelsea Collaborative Creating Pathways to Rewarding Encore Boston Harbor Careers

Chelsea Collaborative Creating Pathways  to Rewarding Encore Boston Harbor Careers

Chelsea Collaborative staff members are busy helping residents prepare for rewarding career opportunities at Encore Boston Harbor, slated to open in Everett this June. Encore Boston Harbor, the first five-star urban gaming resort in the U.S, plans to hire over 5,000 workers for a range of rewarding hospitality careers. For more information, visit encorebostonjobs.com.

More than 175 career-seekers participated in workshops in recent weeks alone on resume writing and how to create a Skillsmart profile. Skillsmart is a portal that helps match peoples’ interests with positions at Encore Boston Harbor. “We are proud to create pathways to better paying positions, so our residents can achieve better economic mobility, and don’t have to work two jobs just to make ends meet for them and their families,” said Sylvia Ramirez, Workforce Development Manager at Chelsea Collaborative.

Chelsea Collaborative is part of Encore Boston Harbor’s community action network. Encore Boston Harbor is committing $10 million over the next four years to support a wide range of social programs and civic institutions that will help those in need and improve the lives of residents in local communities.

Chelsea Collaborative is leading the Chelsea 500 coalition, which mission is to engage the City, businesses, and local non-profits to create a workforce pipeline so that 500+ residents can gain the skills and support necessary to apply for positions at Encore Boston Harbor. While Chelsea 500 capitalizes on the casino opening, its longer- term ambition is to build local workforce development capacity to improve Chelsea residents’ odds of securing employment in the near term, and to work with industry leaders to help diversify the employment options. Members of the coalition include City of Chelsea, Chelsea Collaborative, TND/Connect, Chelsea Housing Authority, Chelsea Recreation and Cultural Affairs Division, Bunker Hill Community College, Casino Action Network.

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CHS Roundup

CHS Roundup


Stephanie Simon takes second place in the long jump at all-state meet

Chelsea High track star Stephanie Simon captured second place in the long jump at last Saturday’s All-State Meet that was held at the Reggie Lewis Center.

Simon was in third place approaching her third and final jump of the day, but her leap of 18′-2.25″, which was five inches better than her top jump to that point, propelled her into the second spot, behind only Jada Johnson of Sharon, who had the best jump of the day at 18′-6.75″.

Stephanie had advanced to the all-states by taking first place the previous week in the Division 2 meet with a jump of 17′-9″. Thanks to her second-place finish at the all-state meet, Simon now will compete in the All-New England Meet this Saturday.

Simon also competed in the 55 meter dash on Saturday, finishing in 16th place with a clocking of 7.48 seconds. Stephanie had grabbed third place in the D-2 Meet the week before to advance to the all-states.

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Simon Captures Division 2 State Long Jump Title

Simon Captures Division 2 State Long Jump Title

There is no stopping Chelsea High track star Stephanie Simon.

Simon continued her spectacular junior season by winning the Division 2 state long jump title Saturday at the Reggie Lewis Track Center in Roxbury.

Designated as the No. 1 seed in the competition based on her performance this season, Simon jumped 17 feet, 9 inches to claim the first-place medal.

Stephanie Simon.

Simon, who was undefeated this season in the Commonwealth Athletic Conference (CAC), became the first female athlete in school history to win a divisional state indoor track title.

Chelsea High girls track coach Cesar Hernandez said Simon had an outstanding day, putting the 17-9 jump on the scoreboard on one of her first jumps.

“I was very excited to see her win the Division 2 state championship,” said Hernandez, a 2010 CHS graduate who competed in the Red Devils’ boys track program.

Simon reigned over the CAC indoor track circuit this winter as a champion in the long jump, 55-meter dash, and 55-meter hurdles.

The talented 5-foot-5-inch athlete will compete in the All-State Championships this Saturday. Simon is the No. 3 seed in the event.“Stephanie is working hard and I think she has put herself is in great position to contend for the title,” said Hernandez

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Sports 01-31-2019

Sports 01-31-2019

CHS Sports Roundup

CHS TRACK TEAMS DROP FIRST CONTESTS

The Chelsea High boys and girls indoor track teams dropped their first meets of the season last week to Greater Lawrence.

The outcome of the Lady Red Devils’ contest came down to the final race, the 4 x 400 relay. Chelsea held a 41-40 lead entering the relay, but Greater Lawrence won the race to win the meet by a score of 45-41.

Highlights from girls meet included:

1st and third in the high hurdles: Stephanie Simon, Sandra Tun

1st and third in the 50 yard dash: Stephanie Simon, Sandra Tun

1st in the 300: Ana Chang

1st in the 600: Yarelis Torres Diaz

1st in the High Jump: Stephanie Simon

1st in the mile: Yarid Deras

On the boys’ side, the Red Devils came up short by a score of 54-31. The highlights for Chelsea were:

1st in Shot Put: Rigo Flores

1st in the 600: Jazmany Reyes

1st, 2nd, 3rd in mile: Jazmany Reyes, Oscar Amaya, Ian Padilla

1st, 2nd in 1000: Justin Turner, Limilson Tavares

SIMON WINS LONG JUMP AT STATE COACHES

Chelsea High track star Stephanie Simon captured the long jump event at this past weekend’s State Coaches Meet, an event that features the top athletes in Division 1, with a leap of 18′-0.75″, a distance that qualified Stephanie for the nationals.

Teammate Ana Chang turned in a strong performance in the 300 dash, finishing in 20th place among a field of 58 competitors. For the boys, Red Devil Justin Turner improved his two-mile school record from 10:18 to 10:13.36.

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Sports 01-03-2019

Sports 01-03-2019

Bruins Beat

by Bob Morello

Bruins look to ride Classic win

With the satisfaction of having pinned a 4-2 loss on the Chicago Blackhawks at the 2019 NHL Winter Classic at Notre Dame Stadium, the Bruins will take the two points and look forward to continuing the New Year’s festivities during their four-game homestand. At the end of the game Tuukka Rask took off his specially designed for the Classic goalie mask, knowing that he had delivered an impressive effort, and could take pleasure in having one-upped the Rask-haters. His effort was solid from beginning to end, as he allowed an early goal to Chicago’s Brendan Perlini in the first period, and then put up the barricade, stopping all but one of the Blackhawks’ remaining shots.

Rask came up big twice on Chicago’s All-Star, Patrick Kane, stopping him first on a breakaway close to the end of the first period, and again with a spectacular stop on Kane’s shot from the slot with less than 40 seconds remaining in the game and the Bruins up by one goal. With a jam-packed stadium of 79.126 in attendance, Rask disappointed the majority of them, as the crowd was heavily weighted with Blackhawks fans from nearby (90 miles) Chicago. Rask earned high praise from his teammates who appreciated his efforts that once again put the Bs into a playoff spot, but Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy summed it up best with: “You get two points, but it’s more than just an average game. You’re playing in front of what, 80,000 people on national TV, two historical franchises. Everyone wants to see a good hockey game, and we just want to be on top. It worked out well for everybody, specifically for us.”

David Pastrnak tied things up (1-1) for Boston, scoring his 24th goal on a nice feed from Patrice Bergeron. Pastrnak returned the favor, feeding Bergeron who scored (#13) in the second period to tie the game at 2-2. The solid performance throughout the game by the fourth-line, saw Chris Wagner setting up the game-winner, as Matt Grzelcyk’s shot bounced off Kane’s body, landing in the perfect spot on the ice for Sean Kuraly to cash in with the go-ahead goal (#4). Putting the cherry on the tasty win was Brad Marchand’s empty-netter (#13) with 33 seconds remaining.

The Bruins return to Garden ice for a four-game homestand, beginning with tonight’s game (Thursday 7:00pm) as they take on the Calgary Flames. The Flames are currently battling the Vegas Golden Knights and the San Jose Sharks for the top spot in the Pacific Division. Saturday (1/5 at 7:00pm), the Buffalo Sabres, who at press time were tied with Boston (48 points), will provide the opposition. The Sabres, despite their red-hot start to the season have cooled off a bit, posting a record of 4-4-2 of for their last ten games. The Minnesota Wild are battling to get into a playoff spot, and will be hosted by the Bruins on Tuesday (1/8 at 7:00pm). The Wild have been struggling of late, with a lackluster 3-6-1 record in their last ten games. The Bruins’ homestand will end Thursday (1/10 7:00pm), when the streaking Washington Capitals invade the Garden, looking to add to their impressive record, as they ride on the strength of eight wins in their previous ten games.

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Chelsea 500 Committee to Host Career Fair on Dec 14 at City Hall

Chelsea 500 Committee to Host Career Fair on Dec 14 at City Hall

The Chelsea 500 Committee, consisting of local organizations such as the Chelsea Collaborative, TND, the Chelsea Housing Authority, the Chelsea Recreation and Cultural Affairs Division, and Bunker Hill Community College, will hold a Career Fair on Dec. 14 at Chelsea City Hall.

The newly formed committee is working collectively to create a jobs pathway for Chelsea residents with Encore Boston Harbor, the $2.6 billion casino and resort that will open in June, 2019, in Everett.

The committee is working on holding jobs pipeline information sessions, career readiness workshops, case management, interview skills workshops, ESL, computer classes and much more. All members of the community interested in working at Encore Boston Harbor are encouraged to participate in the various workshops and classes.

The “500” portion of the Chelsea 500 Committee’s name represents the committee’s hopes to create a workforce pipeline so that 500 or more residents can gain the skills and support necessary to apply for positions at Encore Boston Harbor.

While Chelsea 500 focuses on the opening of the casino, its longer-term ambition is to build a local workforce development capacity, along with advocacy and job readiness services, to improve Chelsea residents’ chances of securing employment in the near term. Building relationships with businesses in other hospitality-related industries is another goal for the committee.

Chelsea 500 will collaborate with the Casino Action Network, One Everett, Somerville, Boston, and the MassHire Metro North Workforce Board.

(Chelsea 500, MassHire and Encore Boston Harbor will host an information session on Nov. 13 at 6 p.m. at the Mary C. Burke Complex. For more information, please call Sylvia Ramirez at 617-889-6080).

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