New and Improved Chelsea Art Walk Ready to Premiere This Weekend

New and Improved Chelsea Art Walk Ready to Premiere This Weekend

The Chelsea Art Walk has re-booted and will host multiple events this summer under the Art Walk banner instead of having one big day, said coordinator Joe Greene.

The first event this year will take place this Saturday and Sunday, June 9 and 10, from noon-6 p.m.

The first event will be titled ‘Playing in the Garden’ and will be focused at the Chelsea Community Garden, 130 Ellsworth St., and will also feature a Pop Up Art Show at the Pearl Street Gallery, 100 Pearl St. – which is only a few blocks from the Garden. (open between 2-6 p.m.)

“Instead of having everything on one weekend, we have decided to spread it out,” Greene said. “A lot of our members work the event. So, the 20 or 30 working the garden wouldn’t get to see the play and the people at the music show can’t go to the gallery. It also takes the pressure off having to get everything done at once.”

Greene said they have a manager who has been hired to coordinate the re-booted event, Angelina McCoy and two new folks at the Garden helping too – the Gaspar family.

Meanwhile, Dan Cortez will be coordinating the music and theatrical event, which will be titled Fiesta Verano and will take place later, on June 23.

“We did things all at once for eight or nine years and it worked great, but it was really difficult,” Greene said. “If someone worked at the event, they missed all of it. So, we have repositioned it.”

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Women Celebrating Women at Roca

Women Celebrating Women at Roca

Every country has a story about the strength of its women. That was the lesson learned by the 30 or so young mothers who attended Roca Chelsea’s International Women’s Day celebration on March 29.

Roca’s Young Mothers program focuses on helping high risk young moms get out of violence and poverty, go to work, and care for their children. As part of the programming, Roca has built a community among the participating women through a weekly ‘family night,’ where moms and their children gather to take classes, learn, and grow – and also eat and socialize in a safe environment. The International Women’s Day festivity was an add on to this weekly gathering, giving the group a chance to learn about each other’s home countries and the women that helped shape history.

Ahead of the event, each participating young mom was asked to research a woman in history from her home country, and prepare a short presentation for the group. The result was a diverse line up of rock star women from all over, including Honduras, Guatemala, Puerto Rico, and the US.

“We asked them to look for women in history that made a difference and acknowledge powerful women in Latin America who have always been there,” explained Roca Chelsea Young Mothers staff member Gina Josette. “We wanted to celebrate these women and ourselves as women in a fun and creative way.”

And celebrate they did. The women also brought traditional dishes from their home country to share with the group making the event a feast!

“It’s important and empowering for our young mothers to celebrate women in their country’s history,” said Josette. “For other events, we celebrate other important parts of our lives—Mother’s Day, graduations, etc. We celebrate any type of success in our group, and we celebrate it together.”

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2018 Black History Month

2018 Black History Month

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The Chelsea Black Community’s 2018 Black History Month Celebration continued Tuesday with an art exhibit opening at the City Hall Gallery. Pictured are some of the guests at the event, from left, Councillor-at-Large Calvin Brown, Beverly Martin-Ross, Sharon Caulfield, Councillor Luis Tejada, Yahiya Noor and son, Khasim Noor, Henry Wilson, Lisa Santagate, Councillor-at-Large Leo Robinson, CBC President Joan Cromwell, and Ronald Robinson. The next Black History Month event is a Taste of Culture Cook-Off Monday at 5 p.m. at La Luz de Cristo Church, 738 Broadway.

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The Finishing Touch

The Finishing Touch

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Marisa Yee, 6, painting on the ice at the Cronin Skating Rink during the first New Year’s Eve Paint & Skate event on Sunday afternoon, an event put on by the Chelsea Recreational and Cultural Division. The event was a great success and many Chelsea families enjoyed the afternoon.

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Helping Puerto Rico

Helping Puerto Rico

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Carmen Cruz prays for friends and family in Puerto Rico during the vigil and donation drive on Thursday, Sept. 28, to aid in the relief effort for Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria. Chelsea Collaborative and Teamsters Local 25 organized the event, with many community partners. Teamsters Local 25 is donating trucks and drivers to transport the relief items Hurricane Maria has devastated the island, with an overwhelming majority of the 3.4 million residents still without power as of last week, and officials struggling to get food, water, fuel and needed supplies to everyone in need.

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Eclipse Proves to be One of the Most Popular Events of the Year

Eclipse Proves to be One of the Most Popular Events of the Year

By Seth Daniel

Look Up! Kristin Edwardsen, Lisa Makrinikolas and Michael Brannigan focus in on the eclipse.

Look Up! Kristin Edwardsen, Lisa Makrinikolas and Michael Brannigan focus in on the eclipse.

As the moon began to pass in front of the Sun on Monday, Aug. 21, the line of people who wanted to get in on the Eclipse Party on City Hall Lawn began to grow and grow.

Soon, hundreds had gathered to witness the spectacle, far more than anyone had expected.

But it was a marvel that grabbed the attention of the nation, and Chelsea was no different in that hordes of people gathered to have fun on a beautiful Monday and see something quite unique.

For some of the hundreds that gathered at City Hall, they understood that it might be a once in a lifetime event. Only 63 percent of the Sun was blocked out in Chelsea, and another coast to coast event like Monday’s isn’t going to happen until 2040 – though a total eclipse will occur in New England in 2024.

“This isn’t going to happen again here until 2024 and I might not be alive to see another one,” said Naomi Zabot, who attended with her sister, Devra Zabot. “I’ve been talking about this for a long time. My grandparents came from Chelsea and we have roots in Chelsea. This is the place to see history like this.”

Ivonny Carrillo attends the Pioneer Charter School of Science, and said she is good at science but doesn’t necessarily like it. However, the one exception is astronomy. So it was that she and her entire family came to City Hall to make sure to get special glasses and a prime viewing spot.

“It’s a once in a lifetime experience,” she said. “I don’t really like science, but I am good at it. Astronomy is about the only science I do like.”

Aimmi Velez said she simply enjoyed everyone coming out for a non-traditional event. It wasn’t a community meeting or a block party, but a natural event.

“I didn’t think I would see this in my lifetime,” she said. “I think it’s cool people wanted to come out and be together to look at this very unique natural occurrence. It’s interesting people wanted to be together to see it.”

The event at City Hall was put on by the Chelsea Public Library as part of a grant from NASA, and that partnership helped a lot to get people in the area interested in the eclipse.

Librarian Martha Boksenbaum has been preparing for the event for quite some time and was very excited to see everyone want to attend the Chelsea event. She said it gives some momentum to the other activities that will be included as part of the NASA partnership.

For the better part of 20 minutes, Milena Carvalho used her glasses to watch the movement of the moon across the Sun. She said it was a very patient and slow process.

“This was something I wanted my whole family to see,” she said, noting that her children, husband and mother were there. “It was really interesting to watch. It was like looking at a half moon, but instead it was a half Sun. That was very cool.”

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Chelsea Lunch Initiative

Chelsea Lunch Initiative

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The initial Chelsea Lunch initiative kicked off on the City Hall Lawn on Wednesday, July 12, at noon, and was a hit. While rain threatened the event which takes place every week on Wednesday from noon to 2 p.m. – it held off and residents and business owners filed to the event. Downtown Coordinator Mimi Graney said it was a great mix of residents and area workers. Food provider Rhythm N Wraps sold out of their offerings by 1:30 p.m.
“There were more than a few smiles and folks said they were excited to attend again next week,” said Graney.
The Chelsea Lunch Marketplace offers food, but also informational booths, small retailers and other amenities.

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Sunset Salute

Sunset Salute

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Sailors on the Coast Guard Ship the USCGC Eagle bring down the colors at 8:24 p.m., sunset, on Tuesday, June 20, after the firing of the USS Constitutions cannon. The event was an official Sail Boston Sunset Salute in the Charlestown Navy Yard and drew hundreds to the Town. The USCGC Eagle was in port at the Charlestown Navy Yard as part of Sail Boston all week, departing this morning, June 22. Sail Boston and the National Parks combined to host thousands upon thousands of visitors last weekend and early this week for the international
event.

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Roca CEO Molly Baldwin Responds to Comments at City Council Meeting

Molly Baldwin, CEO of Roca, released the following statement pertaining to the City Council’s discussion about ROCA at Monday night’s meeting:

In the last meeting of the Chelsea City Council, questions were raised about Roca’s transparency and city resources spent on helping high-risk young people served by Roca. It is Roca’s honor to work with the Chelsea City Council, and as has been our history, we wanted to respond fully and transparently to these reasonable but misguided questions.

Roca has proudly opened its doors to multiple levels of program evaluation and is nationally recognized for using the highest standards of data tracking and analysis available. Requests for program outcomes and organizational performance, from city leaders, partners or the community are always answered by full transparency.

Roca has served young people in Chelsea for 28 years and, this October, we will celebrate 20 years in our current location on Park Street. In the past year, 218 young Chelsea residents were served by Roca, and in addition, Roca is conducting outreach to over 100 young people. About half of the young people we’ve served this year are very high risk young men and the rest are young mothers, most of whom are high risk as well. We are privileged to know and work with each one of these young members of our community. They join thousands of young people we’ve been privileged to help through the years.

Roca is known in Chelsea, in the state and nationally for being relentless. We focus on the highest risk young people and invite them to participate in their own lives. We believe that, with relentless outreach to each young person, meaningful relationships between our staff and our participants, and programming that is tailored specifically for this tough-to-serve population, these young people too can succeed. We don’t only believe in it, we know it for a fact. In the past decade, we became a data-driven organization which tracks and analyzes everything we do. Our numbers show that after the first intensive two years with Roca, 93 percent of our young men don’t get rearrested and 87 percent hold a job for six months or more. This is a great benefit for each one of them and also for our city.

As a longstanding member of the community, Roca has partnered with the City of Chelsea in various ways through the years. The city currently funds a work contract for Roca’s Transitional Employment Program, in which young people learn how to work while cleaning the streets of Chelsea. A second city budget item is allocated as back-up for state funding to the Chelsea Police Department and Roca in the event that the state’s project funds are delayed or cut. Roca’s ongoing efforts to raise additional non-city funds from the government and private funders have borne fruit, and Roca is successful in leveraging substantial resources to Chelsea’s young people. However, these sources alone cannot substitute local support for our city’s young people.

Roca is proud to be part of Chelsea, serves hundreds of its young people and employs many city residents. Chelsea is Roca’s home in the deepest sense. Our city’s young people deserve support from their community as they choose to change their lives. Roca will continue to work with each one of these young people, with the city in which they reside and with the City Council, to offer them and our community a safe and thriving place to live.

Molly Baldwin

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Cromwell,CBC will Recognize Eight Chelsea Trailblazers

By Cary Shuman

Chelsea Black Community (CBC) President Joan Cromwell has announced that eight individuals will be honored as “Chelsea Trailblazers” at the third annual CBC Black History Month celebration today at Chelsea High School.

The recipients will be recognized at an awards ceremony in the CHS auditorium following the dinner portion of the program.

The award recipients are Robert “Duke” Bradley, Richard Katz, Shirley Thompson, Maureen Lee, Ronald Robinson, Annie Jones, Police Chief Brian Kyes, and Police Lt. Golden “Rico” Tyre.

“We are honoring these men and women for making a path and continuing to give back to the community,” said Cromwell.

Henry Wilson is the chairman of the event. Dakeya Christmas and Beverly Martin Ross are the leaders of the speaking program.

Admission is free to the celebration. There will be food, activities, and entertainment.

“Come and enjoy this great event with us,” said Cromwell. “We’re going to have dinner from 5 to 6:15 p.m. and then move in to the auditorium for the speaking and awards program.”

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