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Happenings in the Hood

Want to know about free and low cost events in and around the South End? Check out this blog.

Hope you all had a wonderful fourth of July because I certainly did.  Now I am bursting to tell you of stuff happening in the hood.

First I want to report to you on our Pine Street Inn Upton St. Art Framing party which was a big success.  We raised $1,800!  Thanks to all of you who participated.  We still need to reach our goal of $3,000 to pay for the cost of framing the 27 pieces we selected to be placed in the public areas of 40 Upton St.  Here’s where you come in.  Attached to this email is a catalog of the 27 pieces.  Be a sponsor of art and you will have a plaque with your name attached to your piece (s).  Look thru the catalog, pick the art that has your name on it to bear your name, then go to the Pine Street Inn website and make your 100% tax deductible contribution.  Click on “donate” and fill in the info requested.  In the comments area, put “Upton St” and the number or name of the art you are selecting.  If you would prefer to speak to a human being, contact Melissa Cording at melissa.cording@pinestreetinn.org or call her at 617-892-9183.  Checks may also be mailed to the Pine Street Inn Development Office, 444 Harrison Ave., Boston, MA  02118.  Upton St. and the name or number of the piece should be noted somewhere on the check.

We also need folks with cars to help us pick up the art from all the donors.  Most are fairly local so no more than an hour or two of your time would be needed.  If you are available to help us out, do let Melissa know and she will coordinate pickups for you at your convenience.

Now, what’s happening in the neighborhood?

Be sure to sign up for our United South End Settlements (USES) free walks, both of which deal with former South End communities: Both start at 6 pm.

On Monday July 23rd Alison Barnet, historian, writer and long-time South Ender, will focus on prominent German Jews who lived here from the 1860s to the 1880s.  Highlights of this walk include Temple Israel’s Columbus Avenue synagogue, meeting places and the Young Men’s Hebrew Association.  Meet Alison at the parking lot at Columbus and Holyoke, next to Charlie’s Sandwich Shoppe.


The next week on Monday July 30th we are doing the rescheduled exploration of the Greek community.  Join my postman Chris Kostaras who grew up here when it was a Greek neighborhood for a walk down memory lane.  The meeting point is the St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church on Union Park Street between Shawmut and Washington Sts.

We restrict participation in the walks to 20 people so sign up quickly by emailing devintern@uses.org.  The walks are pet friendly but you may want to leave Fido at home if you would like to join us at the optional dinner afterwards where we break bread with the walk leaders.  The walks proceed at an easy pace that just about anyone can handle.  Walks happen only if it is not raining.  You will be notified via email on the day of the walk if it will be rescheduled.


Now for the rest:

Get your dancing shoes on and come out every Monday for salsa dancing behind the Blackstone Community Center on W. Brookline St. between Shawmut and Washington Sts.  Not only will they will teach you how to do it but in no time at all you can be an expert.  Well maybe.  The music and camaraderie are infectious so who cares if you have two left feet..

A good place to practice your new dance steps is at O’Day Park when Berklee musicians come out to play.  O’Day Park is on W. Newton St., right next to the Villa Victoria Center for the Arts.  The first concert of the season is tonight July 5th from 7 to 9 pm where you can hear Frankie Rodriguez and his Homanaje (homage) to Salsa.  On July 19th Boston Landmarks Orchestra will set up in Blackstone Park for their Fiesta Sinfonica from 6:30 to 8 pm.  Bring a picnic supper and your tapping toes and spend a fabulous evening under the stars.

The 14th annual Lantern Festival is scheduled for Thursday evening July 12th (raindate July 19th) from 6 to 9 pm at Forest Hills Cemetery.  This breathtaking ceremony of remembrance is inspired by Buddhist ritual where lanterns representing the souls of the dead are floated upon water.  You can inscribe your own words of remembrance and hope or have calligraphers add Japanese characters on special paper lanterns and then release them, glimmering with candlelight, on Lake Hibiscus at sunset while a lone piper plays Amazing Grace.  It is one of the most beautiful and moving sights you will see.  The event is free but a $10 donation is requested for each lantern to supporst the festival.  Note there is no lighting at the cemetery after dark so bring a flashlight.  Take the Orange Line to Forest Hills.  The cemetery is a short walk via the Tower St. shortcut.

On July 15th, the Animal Rescue League is sponsoring Happy Tails from 11 to 3 pm.  Bring your dog(s) to 10 Chandler St.for pet photos and treats.  There is a $20 suggested donation.

The Society of Arts and Crafts at 175 Newbury St. is holding a reception on Thursday July 19th from 6 to 8 pm for its new show “Twelve Artists, Twelve Objects, 2012”.  The exhibit features twelve alumni of the graduate metal program at New Paltz State University.  Each artist has created twelve pieces.  Be sure to see this diverse and interesting collection of art.

Finally, the always delightful Festival Betances runs from July 20th to 22nd.  Join our neighbors at Villa Victoria for fabulous Latin music, food and good cheer.  A description of the activities is available at www.iba-etc.org/events.  

Now you have no excuse to stay in this month, you hear.  Happy Adventures.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

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