M. Celata Real Estate
268A Broadway, Revere, MA 02151
781-289-7500 | reveremoe@comcast.net

Press Releases

Gary Ferragamo joins M. Celata Real Estate


Gary’s Bio


Gary began his Real Estate career in 1994 in sunny California with a small Real Estate residential Property Management Company. 


His first position was as the Director of Business Development and Marketing.  Within his first year the company ‘doubled in size.’  He was then quickly promoted to Vice President of the company and for the next several years they continued to grow and grew about 500% larger by his sixth year with the company. 


In 2002 Gary moved back to the East Coast, purchased a beach home on Revere Beach and settled back in to his childhood city.  He immediately received his Massachusetts Real Estate license and began his Real Estate career on this coast. 


From 2005 through 2008 Gary was hired as the Sales Manager in charge of a new $170 Million high-end residential condominium project located right on Revere Beach.


Within sixteen months Gary and his team sold over 100 Condos and raised over $55 Million.  Gary personally sold 70 of the 100 Condo’s sold and represented $35 Million  of the $55 Million sold.  He also sold the most expensive condo in the history of Revere at a whopping $1.5 Million, as well as personally Brokered a deal for one Buyer who purchased six Condos for a total sales price of $3.5 Million.


In 2014 Gary teamed up with Maureen Celata, the Broker/Owner of M. Celata Real Estate, as the Vice President of the company.   Gary and Maureen are ‘cut from the same cloth’ and have extremely similar outlooks, values, and future goals.  


Gary states there are two agreed upon major Core Values between he and Maureen of  M. Celata Real Estate.  They are: 

1.    "We will continue to seek, hire and train the best REALTORS ® in the area. 

2.    "We will become the most Educated, Knowledgeable, Honest, Ethical, Fair and Successful Real Estate company in the Country.”   


Gary further states; "You will simply not find anyone to assist you or work ‘smarter and harder’ for you in achieving your Real Estate goals, than the team at M. Celata Real Estate.”


Whether you are thinking about selling your home, or buying a home or investment property, please feel free to contact Gary at any time. 


Gary Ferragamo – Cell. 781-223-7771.


Tracey Benner from Chelsea joins M. Celata Real Estate As an Sales Agent

M. Celata Real Estate Agency is pleased to announce the newest addition to our company, Tracey Benner from Admirals Hill in Chelsea.
Tracey joined the M. Celata Real Estate family after obtaining her Real Estate license in the spring of 2015.  Inspired by her year long first home search and the sale of her family's three generation home, Tracey values the importance of fully understanding the real estate process.  She is dedicated to minimizing stress and maximizing understanding for her clients.
Tracey has more than 10 years of client service and program management experience.  She has worked in both the public and private sector, most recently managing a variety of community based Science, Technology Engineering and Math  (STEM) programs for Boston area residents through Massachusetts General Hospital.  Referred to by many of her colleagues as MacGyver, she also offers creativity, problem solving, organization and determination to her work with each and every client.
Born and raised a Boston girl, Tracey knows (and loves) the area.  This knowledge and passion provides clients with a clear and informed perspective when  making such monumental buying and selling decisions.
If you are looking for assistance from someone who is committed to provide top notch service and support through the home buying or selling process, call Tracey!  She can be reached at 781-718-0335 or traceybenner@gmail.com.


Silvia Caceda joins M. Celata Real Estate

Silvia Caceda formally from another real estate agency here in Revere has joined the M. Celata Real Estate Family as a top producing agent. M. Celata Real Estate is thrilled to have her.
My husband and I came to Boston to live from Peru.  When we came to Boston we needed to find a home and during that process I realized this was what I wanted to do as a career, help people find homes.
I studied and got my real estate license in 2005 and immediately affiliated with Prudential Cordano Realty and remained there for several years.  After Prudential Realty closed I joined Stonehurst RE Group located in Revere for another several years.  I bring ten years experience to M. Celata Real Estate.
Over my ten years in business I have  helped many buyers to purchase their homes.  This process makes me feel happy to see my client's faces when  they receive the keys to their new home.
 I have also assisted many sellers, investors and landlords to fulfill their needs.  It has been very rewarding to me as a professional not only to provide these services but to become friends with my clients.
My preferred areas of service include north of Boston but I have shown and sold properties in all of Massachusetts.
I speak fluent English, German and Spanish is my  native language. If you have real estate needs I would love to help you either buy or sell.  Please contact me at 978-767-6147.


Stephen Jalbert has joined M. Celata Real Estate Agecy on June 28, 2015.

M. Celata Real Estate is pleased to announce that Stephen Jalbert from Marblehead has joined M. Celata Real Estate as its newest Sales agent.
Stephen "Steve" Jalbert comes to M. Celata Real Estate with almost 20 years of administrative leadership and experience.  Steve has been employed with  Beverely Medical Supplies since 1996 and he became the President of the company in 2002.  Beverely Medical is a home medical equipment provider that deals directly with the care of patients residing at home.  He has also been the head Trustee of AidanConnaor LLC since 2005.  AidanConnor is a real estate holding Trust.
While President of Beverly Medical he oversaw the company double in size as well as achieve National Accreditation on four separate occasions.  The first three time were by CHAPS, and the fourth time with BOC National Accreditation.
Steve as named Chairman of the Hospice of The North Shore (now Care Dimensions Hospice) annual Walk for Hospice in 2004 and 2005 and was named Chairman of the Shaughnessy Kaplan (now Spaulding North Shore) fund raising board in 2007.
Along with his commercial experience with AidanConnor LLC, Steve has been fortunate to be involved personally with four residential properties.
Steve is a graduate of St. Johns Prep in Danvers, Ma. and St. Michael's College in Winooski Park, VT.  He lives in Marblehead, Ma with his wife Kristen and their two boys Aidan and Connor.
In his personal time Steve coaches hockey and enjoys golfing, watching the Patriots, Bruins, Red Sox
and spending time with his family and friends.
Steve has a great deal of experience in and out of the real estate industry and is an asset to any potential Buyers and Sellers.  His work ethic and passion is second to none.
If  you would like to contact Steve he can be reached at 781-864-4340 or sjalbert1@verizon.net


Tatiana joins M. Celata Real Estate in June 2015

Tatiana immigrated form Russia and is hoping to capture the Russian population to help them with their real estate needs
I am on another sharp and exciting turn in my career where once again I challenge myself.  Why real estate?  Well, I enjoy meeting and working with different people, passionate about new knowledge, like to serve people with high quality outcomes and the real estate business provides me with opportunity to exercise all of this on a daily basis.
My personal experiences are first  as an organic chemist I was employed with scientific research institutes of Oceanography, oil and chlorine industries for more than 20  years in Russia.  Worked independently and led groups of scientists.  Following the fall of Communism I opened the first successful private business in a major  industrial city, which is still operational now.  Twenty years ago I immigrated to the US, where I worked in the Human Services field, assisting mentally and physically challenged youth with advocacy, coordination and guidance in their education, sports and employment opportunities.
As a young woman I was educated at an internationally recognized university with my major in Chemistry then graduated school with a PhD in Organic Chemistry.  Came to the states and earned an MBA from Simmons College and in October 2005 completed Executive Mediation Training Program and certified Mediation Works Incorporated (MWI) in Boston.
As a divorced woman with 2 children ages 3 and 6 when I immigrated to the US I understand the importance of hard work, honesty and giving my all to what ever I encountered.
I am new in the real estate business, but not in the world and I am confident that with profound knowledge in real estate, with my rich life's experience and exceptional set of skills, I will provide outstanding service to my clients.
Please do not hesitate to call me for any of your real estate needs.  You will be in good hands with me and  my team at M. Celata Real  Estate to accomplish your real estate goals.  I can be reached at
781-462-5050 or tbk781@yahoo.com


Danielle Lozzi joins M. Celata Real Estate in June

After taking the real estate pre-licensing class at Celata Real Estate Academy, Danielle passed with flying colors and has affiliated with M. Celata Real Estate to become a practicing Real Estate Agent.
M. Celata Real Estate is thrilled to have her.
With more than 20 years administrative experience, Danielle has been a top executive assistant for two multi-billion dollar companies starting at the national retail chain and then to the leading healthcare insurance company in Massachusetts.
Personal goal setting is important to Danielle and she has accomplished much of what she set out to do.  First one was to own her own home which was purchased in 2007.  Together she and her beau have been able to rehab it from top to bottom, a total labor or love!
After a long hiatus from school, Danielle went back to college and graduated in May 2014 with a Bachelors in Liberal Arts with a Specialization in Child Fitness and Health from Lesley University.
Goal oriented and not afraid to take on something new, Danielle recently got her real estate license in May of 2015.
Her work ethics speak for themselves.  Earning a black belt in Karate indicates her commitment, dedication, focus as well as discipline. Hardworking, trustworthy and persistence is just the tip of the iceberg.  Integrity is one of the utmost importance to Danielle  and she is proud to join the M. Celata Real Estate family knowing everyone shares the same principles.
So if you would like the assistance of a hardworking individual to either sell or buy a home, Danielle is your gal.  Please contact her at 617-285-0667.


Dario Quiroz joins M. celata Real Estate


My name is Ivan Dario Quiroz,

I’m mostly known by my middle name Dario because Ivan usually refers to my father.  I have a wonderful wife Vanessa, three fantastic children Izayah, Angelee, and Isaac, and two dogs named Lady and Violet. Needless to say my home is action packed and I love it! We recently purchased our home here in Revere.

 I am fluent in both English and Spanish. I have been in client services and general management for over 10 years from small consultative sales to big box retail. In this time I have learned that consistent success in any customer centric business comes from:

-          Transparency, be honest and thoughtful in all interactions.

-          Integrity, do the right things right. Even when no one is
-          Positivity, is contagious and there is a silver lining in every dark cloud.                      

-          Passion,  a true passion for people. This is what drives me!

All of my experience and attributes are what lead me to real estate.  I look to use this expertise to support clients in what can be the largest and most intimidating purchase or sale they are involved in.  So let’s work together to achieve your goals and make your real estate dreams come true!

Please feel free to contact me @ 857-928-2223 for all your real estate needs.


Leigh Stimolo joins M. Celata Real Estate


Leigh and her husband Kevin Labbe joined M. Celata Real Estate as a team. M. Celata Real Estate is have to have be part of the big team.

A fresh new agent with attention to detail and luxury.  Leigh Stimolo focuses on high end communities such as Bay Village Newbury Street, Back Bay, Cambridge and quint beach communities on the North Shore including the Point of Pines, Revere Beach, Swampscott and Marblehead.  Leigh is a media producer with Harvard University and has experience with photography, interior design and renovation projects.  She and her husband, a real estate agent and general contractor, Kevin, Labbe, partner on projects and are a perfect match for anyone seeking a complete package for investment property and key residential locations.   Please contact Leigh at 617-953-0398 for all of your real estate needs.


Kelly Walley comes from another agency to join M. Celata Real Estate.

Kelly is a former student of the Celata Real Estate Academy and has now joined the M. Celata Real Estate family.
I was raised in Massachusetts but moved to Florida in 1999 where I earned my real estate license in 2006 and represented more than 400 listings.
 I moved back to Massachusetts and decided to earn  my real estate license so I can do what I am passionate about, REAL ESTATE.  I enjoy helping people navigate the complexities of purchasing and selling real estate.  I have an extensive background and knowledge of  the financing process so I feel I can be of value to the first time home buyer.  I have joined the M. Celata Real Estate family so I can dedicate 100% of my time to my customers and clients with the assistance of a winning team.  I look forward to making new friends while helping you with all your real estate needs.  Please contact me, Kelly Walley at 781-291-1631.


Sonja Moskal from Wintrhop joins M. Celata Real Estate

M. Celata Real Estate is pleased to announce the addition of Sonja Moskal as one of our newest real estate agents.
Sonja was born and brought up in Antwerp area of Belgium, where she studied tourism and languages and loved her job as a travel agent.  She immigrated to the United States and for the first 10 years was mostly devoted to starting a family and raising her 2 daughters with her husband.
Sonja then started to work for Just Planes, and internet sales company in Winthrop where she takes care of the customer's needs as a part-time shipping manager.
Missing interaction with people, she decided to join the real estate business by earning here license thru classes she took at Celata Real Estate Academy.  She got her license on April 1, 2015 (no joke)!
Being new to the real estate world may not sound ideal to you , but with an excellent and experienced team behind her, and her promise to give 120% to her customers and clients, she hopes you will give her a chance to provide you with an outstanding buying, selling or renting experience.
Sonja can be reached at (857) 222-7471 for any of your real estate needs.


Al Blasi affiliated with Revere School Systems for years


Al Blasi was synonymous with Revere High School baseball for more than four decades. He helped student-athletes learn all aspects of the game – hitting, fielding, pitching, bunting, and running the bases.

He was as an expert in baseball, a master of the fundamentals who knew how to teach the game and make it fun.

So many Revere baseball players looked at him with reverence, admiring how someone could bring a love of the game to practice each day whether it was in pre-season in March or the final week of the season in late May. Al Blasi clearly enjoyed coaching baseball and we’re so fortunate that he graced our high school baseball program for all those years.

But Al Blasi – the man, the father, the schoolteacher – was also a giant in our community. He brought that same energy and drive in to the classroom where his students and colleagues admired his dedication to his job and his commitment to the teaching profession.

Al Blasi touched so many lives in a positive way in this city. His players will look back with fond memories of his coaching and fatherly advice.

We agree with our superintendent of schools, Dr. Paul Dakin, that Mr. Blasi should be honored for his great contribution to our high school athletic program. We are sure that Dr. Dakin will find just the right way to pay tribute to Al Blasi, the beloved baseball coach and teacher.


Arthur T. Market Basket and Revere's own Hollywood Ending


Back in mid-August, I was on vacation, sitting in a coffee shop in Hollywood, California, opening the morning newspaper when I was astonished to see a front page story about the battle back home for control of the Market Basket grocery empire—a battle that had begun weeks before when I was still in Revere.

I had first read about the fight when the news broke that Arthur S. Demoulas had toppled Arthur T. Demoulas and seized control of the company. By nearly all accounts, including those of many of my high school students who live in Revere and work at Market Basket, Arthur S. was poised to dramatically reduce employee benefits and all but eradicate the fairly generous profit sharing plan that Arthur T. had installed some time before. The battle had almost instantly turned nasty with workers walking off the job demanding that Arthur T. return to the helm, and with Arthur S. going as far as to banish Arthur T. from a country club in which the corporation held ownership.  All the while, rather than opening its doors, the new Market Basket set to open in Revere had been left only to languish, empty; a sad symbol of corporate strife.

All of this had left me profoundly dismayed.

Arthur S. and many of those at the top level were already multi-millionaires and now they wanted to wring even more money out of the company? Make no mistake; I’m no class warrior. From what I have seen, with rare exception, rich people become rich through intelligence, discipline, and above all, hard work; so if they want to pay themselves handsomely, more power to them.  But at what point is enough just about enough? Are you really going to "increase shareholder dividends” by cutting the benefits of your long time Produce Manager? You’re going to further enrich those at the very top by reducing the raise of a 16-year-old whose just trying to scratch together some extra cash for the weekend? I thought, how many Ferraris can you drive; how many yachts can you sail? The whole saga had left a bad taste in my mouth, and I had read little since back at that time.

Having been travelling for much of the weeks that followed, I had lost track of the Market Basket struggle; that is, until that August morning in Hollywood when I opened the Los Angeles Times and was shocked to read that the unthinkable was happening. Whereas in the past when non-union workers walked off a job in protest, they usually did so only to later be replaced by other, often desperate, workers. In the case of Market Basket, an entire community had actually rallied behind Arthur T. and the workers themselves.  Not only had the workers in effect gone on strike, but also in a stunning turn of events, legions of customers had actually defected from Market Basket vowing to join the fight to reinstate Arthur T.  The workers’ cause had gone viral on social media and people everywhere were boycotting the stores. The Market Basket drama had become a battle cry for an entire wounded middle class, and the eyes of the nation were upon the outcome. Economists as far off as Hollywood were weighing in with how they had never before seen a community support local workers with such sheer determination; and as a result of all this, the scales were beginning to tip. Without customers, Market Basket stores were now in disarray and hemorrhaging money. Millions of dollars were being lost weekly. Vendors were pulling the plug on the Arthur S. regime, and both store shelves and parking lots were left empty.

David had shown up for the fight of his life, and Goliath’s knees were buckling.

With renewed interest, I followed the story eagerly for the next few weeks and was further heartened to read that Arthur T. was ultimately able to prevail, at least in that he was able to buy out the controlling interest of Market Basket and restore himself as CEO of the chain.  For once, the workforce had become the victor, greed the vanquished; and I watched the news as both workers and customers, an entire community in fact, joined together in celebrating their company’s comeback, and in heralding the return of a CEO who apparently cares more about his employees being able to retire with a modicum of dignity than with polishing the chrome on a new G6.  For the record, I certainly don’t envy Arthur T.

He is now cast in the role of Atlas, burdened with the onerous task of trying to meet vast (but hopefully not crushing) debt obligations, while still trying to give his employees fair pay and benefits. For what it’s worth, in the end, Arthur S. and his crew walked off with well over a billion dollars—a number so staggering it is well beyond my imagination.

Good luck to them.

But meanwhile, while so many across the nation watched, something much bigger happened.  As the new Market Basket has finally opened in Revere, a city that can surely use the jobs and opportunity, it occurs to me that Arthur T., along with the indomitable workers and customers of Market Basket, delivered something sorely missing from far too many in today’s brutal economic landscape: Hope.

And by my ledger, that’s priceless.


Anthony Natale Joins M. Celata Real Estate.

Anthony Natale is a full-time RE/MAX Andrew Realty Services Realtor, dedicated to providing his customers and clients with the highest level of service and integrity. Forward-thinking and results-oriented, Anthony takes a proactive approach to real estate by offering honesty, professionalism and the latest technology, innovative marketing tools and services needed to achieve maximum exposure and maximum results in today's competitive marketplace.
Whether you're looking to buy or to sell, put Anthony's dedication and expertise to work for you.

5/13/2014 2:12:51 PM

Groundbreaking on New Stadium


Officials Hold Groundbreaking on New Stadium

April 30, 2014
City and state officials converged on Harry Della Russo Stadium on Monday for a groundbreaking that will usher in a brand new Stadium with new amenities such as a turf field and a running track.

City and state officials converged on Harry Della Russo Stadium on Monday for a groundbreaking that will usher in a brand new Stadium with new amenities such as a turf field and a running track.

City leaders broke ground on the Harry Della Russo Stadium project on Monday afternoon, proclaiming the long-overdue overhaul as a major contribution to the revitalization of Broadway.

"This state-of-the-art Stadium plan is another step forward in our overall plan to revitalize our downtown district,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo.

The new Stadium plan will include a regulation track, a new turf football/soccer field, new bleachers, restrooms, new locker rooms, a new concession stand, two new basketball courts, two new tennis courts, a new press box and a field house.

The project will work hand-in-hand with the new Hill School that is being build immediately to the East of the Stadium and which will share a unique plaza area with the Stadium. The school had a groundbreaking earlier this month.

One of the major accomplishments will not only be having an all-weather turf sports field, but also having a regulation running track.

"This will be the first time in the City’s history our student athletes will have a fully regulation track in Revere,” said Rizzo.

Both Rizzo and Supt. Paul Dakin said they hoped that the new Stadium would not only serve the young population, but also that of other ages as well.

"This is something that will be useful for our sports teams, but also for people of all ages,” said Rizzo, envisioning daytime walking clubs or morning adult exercise groups.

Dakin said it will present an opportunity for older adults to model the healthy lifestyles that are being taught to young people in the fight against childhood obesity.

"I think us older folks and adults in here walking and exercising will model some of the things we want our children to model and that we are teaching them in the fight against childhood obesity,” he said.

He also said it would lead to an activity area in the central part of the city, rather than the traditional exercise area of Revere Beach.

Richard Sullivan, secretary of the executive office of environmental affairs, said the project presents residents with a better quality of life.

"The fabric of a community is the open spaces and parks opportunities a community has to offer its residents,” he said.

Already, the old concrete block walls – circa 1930 – have been torn down to make way for a less prison-like ornamental fence.

"That’s a 100 percent upgrade already,” said Revere High School Athletic Director Shaun Hart. "It looks so much more spacious in here without the wall.”

The contractor for the project is Heimlich Company and the project should be completed this October.



The Biggest Loser comes to Planet Fitness in Revere


Planet Fitness to Host ‘The Biggest Loser’ Call

April 2, 2014

The Planet Fitness at Northgate in Revere will serve as the New England outpost for a casting call to NBC’s ‘The Biggest Loser’ reality television show.

It’s the second year in a row that the casting call will be held at the Revere gym, said owner Tim Morrissette.

"This year should be even more exciting because they are bringing two trainers out from The Biggest Loser ranch,” he said. "We feel ‘The Biggest Loser’ and Planet Fitness are perfect partners. We are unlike any other gym in the country because we’re a place where people can work out no matter what their weight is and not be judged. That’s part of the culture at this gym. We’re definitely proud of this and that they asked us to do it for a second year in a row. They didn’t have one in the Boston area for a few years and we’re glad they came back and chose our location for the Northeast region.”

The casting call will take place on Saturday, April 12, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Morrissette said to expect long lines, as last year’s casting call had lines out the door.

He said the format is that they call people in 10 at a time, and interview them in a group. If they see any prospects, they call them back for a second interview at another location.

"People who come down should expect a long line and a little bit of a wait,” he said. "But they should also expect that they have a shot at getting on the show. Everyone had a great time last year and as I walked through the line, I talked with people from Maine, Philadelphia, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Connecticut. There are numerous locations across the country, but this will be the only location in the Northeast. It should bring a lot of people from all over into Revere


Revere New Deal is loved by Phantom Gourmet


Phantom Gourmet Loves New Deal

April 2, 2014

R1The Phantom Gourmet television show will be featuring one of Revere’s well-known food establishments, New Deal Fruit, 920 Broadway, on an upcoming episode. The Phantom will highlight the Italian groceria’s outstanding sandwiches, delicious fruit, and family atmosphere at the popular store. Pictured on the day of Phantom’s visit to the store are, from left, Yano Petruzzelli Jr., Yano Petruzzelli Sr., Nick Petruzzelli, and Domenic Petruzzelli, with videographer Sean Finley (backround) of the Phantom Gourmet show. "We’re the freshest store in Revere,” said Yano Sr. "We have a Farmer’s Market here every day.”


Revere Riverside Condo Project on Hold


Riverside Condo Project Held in Committee

March 28, 2014

Concerned citizens packed the Joseph A. DelGrosso City Council Chamber at the Zoning Sub-Committee meeting Monday evening to continue a public hearing on the possible construction of a residential condominium building on Thayer Avenue.

29 Thayer Avenue Development, LLC has asked the City Council for special permit to build a 42-unit condo building in the marina area near the Pines River in the Light Industrial District. Attorney James Cipoletta, who represents the developer, along with Civil Engineer Dan Salvo and Jennifer Conley, from Conley Associates Transportation Planning and Engineering, were in attendance to discuss issues such as parking and an increase in traffic.

Salvo reported that engineers decided to build 109 parking spaces for the proposed condo building and the marina, which will also be in control of the developer. Current parking requirements state that there must be two parking spaces per unit resulting in 84 spaces. An additional 25 spaces in a gravel lot will be constructed for additional vehicles and boat trailers for the marina. Salvo also said that they planned on building a three-foot sea wall around the property as well.

Another anticipated report was the traffic study done by Conley Associates, which performed the 2006 traffic study. Experts determined that during peak commuting hours (between 7-8 a.m. and 5-6 p.m.) there would be an increase in about 28 vehicle trips per hour on any given weekday in the most recent study (down 5-10 percent than the original 33 trips they accounted for in the 2006 study). The study was based on comparable data from hundreds of data pinpoints in similar developments. One variable that was left out of this study was the potential for casino traffic.

Cipoletta ended his presentation noting that the condo development was the best possible scenario for the area. He argued that if the Council did not approve the special permit, the community could see industrial properties like factories and warehouses or low-income apartment buildings.

Emotions ran high when the floor became open to residents and Council members. Residents had differing opinions on whether or not the luxury condo building would be the best addition to the neighborhood. While there were several people who said they would be potential buyers for the property, most of the crowded room was opposed to the condo development.

Ricci LaCentra and his wife, Loretta, live near the proposed development and say that the developers have not been good neighbors. Ricci LaCentra said his family has lived in the Riverside community for more than 60 years and that this would be detrimental to his neighborhood.

"They have been bad neighbors from the start,” said LaCentra.

His primary concerns are the increase in traffic in his neighborhood along with potential sewage issues. Adding 42 units would increase the sewage flow in the aging system. He has collected 149 signatures of Riverside residents against the proposed development.

Another argument against the development comes from School Committee member, Donna Wood Pruitt. She argued that the development would not be marketed to empty nesters, like the developers suggested, and instead would be ideal for families with single parents.

"There’s a day care center nearby and a park. It would be perfect for a family with small children,” Wood said, noting that the schools cannot take an influx of more children.

The School Committee is dealing with crowded schools, and she said it cannot handle more students in overflowing classrooms. Superintendent Paul Dakin is also openly against the Thayer Avenue condo development.

However, Councillors Ira Novoselsky, Richard Penta, and Council President Tony Zambuto spoke out in favor of the development.

Councillor John Powers who represents that Ward, said he, like his neighbors, opposes the condo development, and said he would not be voting for the special permit.

As soon as he made that announcement, the room erupted in applause.

Councillor Stephen Reardon said he would hold the request in committee until Councillor Charlie Patch, who was absent from the meeting, returned.


Voters back Mohegan Sun


Voters Back Mohegan Sun

February 26, 2014
All smiles on Tuesday at the celebration party at Suffolk Downs were, from left, Chip Tuttle, COO of Suffolk Downs; Mitchell Etess, CEO of Mohegan Sun, and Mayor Dan Rizzo.

All smiles on Tuesday at the celebration party at Suffolk Downs were, from left, Chip Tuttle, COO of Suffolk Downs; Mitchell Etess, CEO of Mohegan Sun, and Mayor Dan Rizzo.

The referendum vote Tuesday featured a huge voter turnout for a cold day in February, yet nearly an identical result as last November, save an increase of 4 percentage points for the pro-casino vote.

There were 7,169 ‘yes’ votes (63.2%) cast for the casino and 4,172 ‘no’ votes (36.7%) cast against the casino. There were 11,341 votes cast for a turnout of 44 percent.

That was in contrast to last November’s Revere vote where 11,083 total votes were cast and 6,567 voted ‘yes’ (59.2%) and 4,232 voted ‘no’ (38.2 percent).

In the end, between the two votes, there was a slight gain for the ‘yes’ and, actually, a decline in the ‘no’ votes – that despite a great deal of organizing and campaigning against the casino in this go-around.

Buoying the results heavily were returns from Ward 6 – particularly precincts 1 and 2, which vote at St. Mary’s Church. Those two precincts registered 1,221 votes for the casino alone.

No other precincts in the city even reached 500 votes in the affirmative, with Beachmont’s 1-1 (Beachmont VFW) hitting 470 votes.

The top ‘no’ vote was also in Beachmont’s 1-1, where there were 308 against.

Overall, the mood was one of pandemonium all day in the city, and it erupted as the results came in and the victory became obvious.

At Suffolk Downs, in the Topsider Room, Mayor Dan Rizzo, Suffolk Downs Owner Richard Fields and Mohegan Sun  wore large smiles as they moved through a large crowd of enthusiastic supporters.

The fate of the casino now lies in the hands of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, which announced this week that it will likely make a licensing decision at the end of June.


Horse Barns to be moved


New Horse Barns Planned for Eastie Not to Be Off-site

March 12, 2014

A plan submitted by Suffolk Downs to state environmental regulators calls for the horse barns in Revere to be relocated to the East Boston side of the property, built out under the existing Grandstand and in new buildings adjacent to the track on the Boston side – a plan that eliminates the previously idea of putting the barns in an off-site location and redeveloping the open land.

The plan, however, is contingent upon Mohegan Sun receiving a casino license from the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC).

The plan is also much different than plans outlined to community members and the MGC last fall, when it was announced that horse operations would likely be located off-site and horses would be trucked into the track. That idea  isn’t addressed in the newest filing and is now secondary, Suffolk Downs COO Chip Tuttle said.

"Our first choice is to keep the barn areas as close to the racetrack as possible,” he said on Tuesday. "If that doesn’t work out, we’ll look at off-site options. We’re reducing the size of the barn area by consolidating a lot of stables within the existing Grandstand in what is essentially decommissioned space. This plan would be a significant improvement for rainwater and runoff. It’s our first choice. The horsemen have expressed concerns with off-site stabling and we’re trying to honor that concern…It’s definitely preferable to be on-site if we can make it work.”

Tuttle said that Boston Mayor Marty Walsh knows about the plan, and Suffolk Downs expects to begin speaking with him about it soon.

"People on his team know and it’s not a surprise to him,” he said. "We anticipate we’ll be talking to them in the near future.”

Boston Mayor Walsh was not immediately available for comment, as he is at a conference in Washington, D.C.

Tuttle said the barn plan doesn’t rule out the redevelopment of other parts of the Suffolk Downs site.

In the filings, released on Tuesday afternoon in the Environmental Monitor online government publication, Suffolk Downs announced the plan to move the barns to Boston as a way to improve water quality in the Sales Creek and the Rumney Marsh Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC).

"Under current permits, the racehorse facilities north of Sales Creek have the potential to discharge process wastewater into Sales Creek (part of the Rumney Marshes Area of Critical Environmental Concern [ACEC]) during significant storm events,” read the ‘Change of Project Notification’ filing. "This Project will consolidate racehorse and other racing facilities on the Boston portion of the property (thus eliminating racehorse-impacted flows to Sales Creek), reduce the Production Area from which process water may be generated by 80 percent, and reduce impervious area by over five acres. Therefore, the Project will improve water quality in both Sales Creek and the ACEC.”

The crux of the project would involve renovating 200,000 sq. ft. of space on the first and second floor of the existing Grandstand for use as stables and horse support areas. The new Grandstand stables would house 740 horses.

There would also be three new 13,512 sq. ft. horse barns, each containing 42 horse stalls for a total of 126 stalls. Those buildings would be constructed adjacent to the Grandstand, though no specific site was identified and all plans are now just conceptual.

An additional 4,000 sq. ft. quarantine barn would be constructed in the same area, as well as a 720 sq. ft. mortality barn.

The plan also identifies the siting of a 400,000 sq. ft. support area for racing operations. It would include track material storage, a staging area for maintenance equipment and horse trailers, parking for maintenance/stable employees, feed trucks, horse trailers and training/exercise areas for horses.

An accompanying 12,000 sq. ft. racetrack maintenance building will be built adjacent to either the racetrack or Grandstand, according to the filing.

The plan indicates any wastewater from the animal holding areas, feed areas and barn areas will drain to the ground or be piped into the Boston Water and Sewer Commission (BWSC) sewer system.

Included in the plan is the renovation and interior improvements to the existing Clubhouse/Link building, which covers some 20,000 sq. ft., so that the first floor of the Grandstand can be transformed into a horse barn. All of the accessory functions on the first floor now would be consolidated into the renovated Clubhouse.

"The Project involves abandoning the existing Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) located on land to be leased to Mohegan Sun Massachusetts, renovating the grandstand to accommodate horse stalls, and some other elements intended to improve racetrack operations on the Boston portion of the property,” read an overview of the project.

If Mohegan Sun were to get the Casino License, Suffolk Downs indicated that it would like to begin construction in July 2014, complete site improvements and Grandstand renovations in April 2015 and complete the maintenance building in August 2015.

The plan to locate the horse barns to East Boston was a new revelation when released on Tuesday, as previous plans spoken about last fall to the MGC called for off-site horse barns. Suffolk Downs COO Chip Tuttle told the MGC in late November that the track was in "very real” negotiations that could  lead to relocating the barns and training areas off site.

"The use of off-site stabling and training centers is fairly common practice at East Coast racing venues,” he said at that time.

Initial reactions were hard to come by.

Celeste Meyers of No Eastie Casino said the plan proves that there will be impacts on East Boston with a Revere casino.

"This is just another prime example of how a casino at Suffolk Downs will impact East Boston despite claims to the contrary. It also illustrates the reality that this is a Suffolk Downs Casino plan with all of the key players still intact despite the Mohegan Sun header on the application.  Naturally this raises concerns that Suffolk Downs – via the steps they have taken to maintain the details of the application as confidential, may have some lofty and potentially detrimental plans for the East Boston side of the property that will have further far reaching negative impacts. It seems that the developers are doing their darndest to hide the reality that their goal is to guarantee that East Boston winds up with the crap end of the deal


Dollars down the drain


Winthrop Avenue Sewer Pipe Project Has Doubled in Cost

March 12, 2014

The Winthrop Avenue sewer pipe replacement project has doubled in cost over the last several months, and will end up being more than $700,000 over original estimates, according to DPW Director Don Goodwin.

Goodwin told the Council on Monday that the complex replacement project got more complicated as things went on, especially with the MWRA – which ordered the City to take on more costs by moving water pipes that, inexplicably, were located above the collapsed sewer pipe.

"The project has cost us double what we anticipated initially mostly because of what the MWRA has required,” he told the Council. "They actually made us take their two water mains up and out of the ground and put them temporarily on the sidewalk…It’s been an ugly project for us and the engineers.”

Goodwin said the project is running at $1.6 million right now, which is far and above the $900,000 estimates that came last September when the collapse was discovered. Much of those costs had to do with the complexities of navigating in a 30-foot trench, as well as dealing with the bureaucracies of the state government. However, a substantial amount of money was spent on police and DPW details to watch the temporary machinery while the project was mostly at a standstill from September through January. During that time period, police and DPW details totaled more than $400,000.

The crux of the problem, Goodwin said, is that the sewer pipe lies underneath the water mains – which he said should never have been allowed many years ago.

"The question that begs to be answered is why they allowed them to put these two MWRA transmission mains above the sewer line when the other side of the street is free and clear,” he said. "I would suggest that if we allowed them to put the mains in there pre-1970s, then we must have approved it. It makes no sense, but it’s what we have to deal with…We were looking initially at this being done by Thanksgiving. When they ran into the issue of the transmission lines, it became a very, very severe problem.”

One piece of good news is that the project is on schedule now and will likely be done prior to the start of the Little League season – given that the repair project is currently blocking access to McMackin Field.

"By April 9, they expect to have this all completed,” said Goodwin.

The schedule is as follows:

•March 10 to March 17 – remove and replace 18-inch sewer line

•March 18 – Shutdown sewer bypass pumps

•March 19 to March 27 – relay 24-inch water main (includes pressure and chlorination)

•March 28 to April 7 – relay 16-inch water main (includes pressure test and chlorination)

•April 8 to April 9 – street paving and restoration

•April 9 – completion

The City was able to secure a $2 million loan from the state’s Emergency Revolving Loan Fund administered by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to pay for the project. However, no one expected to use the full amount of the borrowing. That, however, looks to be the case now. The loan will be repaid by ratepayers through the Water & Sewer Enterprise Fund.

Council President Tony Zambuto said the costs are a bitter pill to swallow, but something that was hard to avoid in such a difficult repair.

"This is not an easy project,” he said. "The hole is 30 feet deep. Anyone who has done utility work knows…when you’re down 30 feet in a trench, then it’s not an easy job. It’s an astronomical task to do this work…This is what it was – an emergency project


City rating upgraded

Upgrade to AA
March 12, 2014

Mayor Dan Rizzo and Revere Director of Finance George Anzuoni spoke at the City Council meeting Monday night about the City’s recent Standard and Poor’s Rating Servings Report upgrade.

The City of Revere was granted a bond rating of AA- with a stable outlook, an upgrade from last year’s A+ rating. The city is now in a high-grade investment category, meaning that Revere can save substantial amounts of interest charges when borrowing and issuing municipal bonds for large projects

It also contracts the City’s rating just 15 years ago when Revere was at junk bond status and on par with war-ravaged El Salvador.

The Standard and Poor’s Rating Service rates the financial stability of countries, corporations, and municipalities across the globe. It took into account the City’s finances, future economic outlook, educational expense and debt service to determine its marketability to investors and businesses. According to S&P’s definitions, Revere is at a "very strong capacity to meet financial commitments.”

In the report S&P stated:

"The stable outlook reflects our opinion of Revere’s strong budgetary performance, supported by very strong liquidity and budgetary flexibility. For these reasons, we do not expect to change the rating within the outlook’s two year time frame.”

Mayor Rizzo told councillors that with this upgrade Revere will be able to be more competitive in the financial markets. The new rating will allow the City to borrow money at a lower interest rate, resulting in millions of dollars in savings.

"It may seem like just another agenda item but this is huge,” says Mayor Rizzo. "This is going to have a long term, significant impact.”

Both Mayor Rizzo and Anzuoni said that the money they will save would go to City services.

They hope the upgraded rating will help them when it comes time to build a new high school and update infrastructure around the Revere


Historic Vote for Revere


Will Voters Hold ‘em or Fold ‘em?: Historic Vote on Mohegan Sun Slated to Take Place on Tuesday

February 19, 2014
Mayor Dan Rizzo introduces Mohegan Sun CEO and President Bobby Soper during a neighborhood forum at the Jack Satter House on Monday. Soper was in town on Monday making the rounds, and he participated with other officials in the forum - which is one of the last of many that have taken place over the last two months.

Mayor Dan Rizzo introduces Mohegan Sun CEO and President Bobby Soper during a neighborhood forum at the Jack Satter House on Monday. Soper was in town on Monday making the rounds, and he participated with other officials in the forum – which is one of the last of many that have taken place over the last two months.

The Special Election for the casino referendum already has a major head start in voting this week as some 601 absentee ballots had been filed with the Election Department by Tuesday afternoon.

There was still time to file more absentee ballots, but the 601 figure is 100 ballots more than were filed in the overall City Election on Nov. 5, which contained a casino ballot question and a general election for City Council and School Committee.

Election Commissioner Diane Colella said they are preparing for the Feb. 25 election and have already seen a flurry of activity, including the large numbers of absentee ballots.

She said there were 25,711 registered voters in the Special Election


Casino Opponets Rally


Casino Opponents Focus on Problems at Last Week’s Rally

February 19, 2014
Joe Catricala, coordinator of Don’t Gamble on Revere, is flanked with yellow ‘No Casino’ signs last week.

Joe Catricala, coordinator of Don’t Gamble on Revere, is flanked with yellow ‘No Casino’ signs last week.

With larger than life yellow ‘No Casino’ signs posted last week at f the First Congregational Church – signs that showed Paul Revere yelling "The Problems Are Coming” – anti-casino advocates decried the problems they see on the horizon if a casino is allowed in the upcoming Feb. 25 referendum vote.

With Revere’s Joe Catricala of Don’t Gamble on Revere leading the rally last Tuesday night, Feb. 11, about 50 curious visitors stopped in to hear messages from local and national anti-casino advocates. Included on the agenda was a former Congressman from Connecticut, a national anti-casino advocate from Lawrence and a concerned Revere mother – as well as members of the local clergy.

"We want you all here tonight to hear the other side of the casino story, the side that hasn’t been told so much,” said Catricala at the outset of the forum.

That’s exactly what members of Don’t Gamble on Revere and several Revere clergy members have been trying to do over the last month .

Whether at small rallies, the larger interfaith community gathering last Sunday afternoon at Immaculate Conception Church following services, doing active phone banking or hosting weekly information sessions – the anti-casino side has shown up for this campaign.

It’s a side to the casino discussion that was seen in East Boston last year, but something that never really emerged in Revere. "We did not organize in November,” said Rev. Nick Granitsas of First Congregational. "We feel we failed Revere then. We came to a conclusion we needed to organize this time around. We are ashamed we did not fight harder in November, but this time it has created the most unbelievable unity amongst us. We are trying to do what we should have done before. It’s with humility we come before the community to organize as one.”

Catricala said having a second chance allowed his organization to stand up for what they believed was right.

"If you see one of your friends kicked and don’t do anything about it, but later feel guilty about not doing anything, you would say to yourself that if it ever happened again, you would do something,” he said. "We have our chance again and that’s why we’ve stood up now.”

Robert Steele, a former Connecticut Congressman (1970-1975) who lives in the area where Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods are, said casinos kill communities. He said he knew so many people who were excited for the casinos to come into Connecticut, but are now sorry they ever advocated for it.

"Let there be no mistake about it, the only people who benefit from a casino are the owners of a casino,” he said, pounding his fist on the lectern. "The idea is simple; stick a straw into your community and suck as much money as you can out of it.”

Another speaker, Les Bernal, the national director of Stop Predatory Gambling (and a Lawrence resident), said he has watched the same negative story play out all over the country as it has in Revere – a casino company offering big promises, a municipality in need of money, and neighboring cities pitted against one another. He said his organization is particularly interested in stopping government-sponsored gambling – such as exists in Massachusetts.

"What’s happening in Revere is happening all over the country,” he said. "Good cities like Revere all across the country are being tricked by this very powerful lobby…One out of 10 of your neighbors will be expendable…This is a government program that ruins people’s lives and makes them useless to society.”

Also invited to the forum were organizers and volunteers Celeste Myers and John Ribeiro, who founded and still run No Eastie Casino.

Many in the audience were curious about the ballot question calling for a repeal of the gaming laws – a question that could appear on the statewide ballot in November.

Ribeiro said there are no guarantees, but he believes casinos will be repealed in the state. "With that question, no matter what stage the casino is at, the casino would close down,” he said. "It’s not a matter of if casino gambling is repealed in Massachusetts, it’s a matter of when. Eventually, you will all come to our side and casino gambling will be repealed…Once the vote is done, it never comes back before you. There are no ways to close the doors of a casino. A casino is forever


James Harrington joins M. Celata Real Estate

Jim has been in the customer service profession since 1979.  His attention to customer's wishes are reflected in his core listening and strength of wanting to satisfy his customer's needs.   He prides himself in helping them to accomplish their dreams and helps them find a home, a second property or sell their present property.
Jim is also very attentive to detail; having a background in facilities maintenance and major construction trades that are related to real estate.  This makes him a well-rounded individual who can help guide you through the real estate process from "Hello to Home".
If you are looking for someone to help you fulfill your real estate needs, Jim can be reached at 617-997-6772.


Reclaiming low lying marsh lands


We Must Prepare for Rising Sea Levels

August 14, 2013

Benjamin Franklin coined the expression 200 years ago, "You should buy land because they are not making it anymore.”  Well, that may not be exactly true for the last 100 years,  as all the communities on the water have been reclaiming low-lying marsh land.  One just has to look at the the Back Bay and the waterfront in Boston; sections of Revere such as the Point of Pines or Oak Island or lower Revere Street that are all below sea level; or areas along Bennington Street in East Boston that are reclaimed marsh land.

What brings this to mind is the recent discussion that took place in Boston about rising sea levels.  There seems little doubt that the "if” of disastrous flooding and the loss of billions of dollars in property damage and above all, the loss of human life, from Superstorm Sandy that occurred last year has become a matter of "when” for our neighborhoods.

In Boston, the Boston Redevelopment Authority seems poised to approve billions of dollars in new construction for housing and office spaces in these very areas of East Boston and Boston that would be devastated by rising sea levels coupled with a hurricane like Sandy.  In Revere, new construction is being proposed along the beach that would be easily flooded with a tidal surge from a storm.

Revere Ward 5 Councillor John Powers has been leading the charge and has secured more than $3M in flood improvements for residents in these Revere neighborhoods.  For the normal storms, these improvements have stopped the flooding that was commonplace.  However, all bets are off with a major hurricane.

After viewing the damage in New York and New Jersey on the Weather Channel special this weekend, we urge our city officials to make sure that these new buildings are using the most up-to-date technology and water safety measures to prevent the sort of disaster that happened last fall along the coastline just a short distance to our south.


Back to School


Get Your iPads: as the School Year is Gearing Up, RHS Gets Busy Handing out iPads

August 14, 2013

If the future of learning at Revere High School (RHS) is in the electronic world, then it will be the iPad that will be the remote control for students at the school.

This past Monday night, the line stretched out the door as parents and young people waited to go into the RHS Field House.

There was an excitement that was quite apparent as incoming freshmen looked past the registration desk to see the boxes of brand new iPad 4 computers waiting for them.

After registering, students quickly broke open the boxes and took a look at the new machines – many already knowing exactly how to use them and how useful they will be in their upcoming high school years.

As school officials at RHS get ready to ramp up operations for the first day on Aug. 27th, they are preparing for a major change in the way learning happens at RHS – that being via iPad. Through a blend of state grants and budgeted funds, the district has rolled out a plan to provide the latest iPads to every student at the high school. Some 1,700 machines were ordered, and this week students began the process of collecting and learning about the new machines.

On Monday, parents seemed just as excited about the program as the kids collecting the machines. The new technology promised to replace many of the cumbersome textbooks and unnecessary paperwork – and also would free students to spend more time at home and fewer hours doing research at a library.

"I think it’s really awesome,” said Brenda Citino, mother of incoming RHS freshman Andres Irizarry. "A lot of kids can’t afford to buy their own iPads, so this helps everyone get access to the latest technology. I think it’s great they are pushing everything out to the iPad. It’s a wonderful idea. Plus, they don’t have to bring books home anymore and it’s just much more organized for the students.”

Over the next two weeks, students from all grades will be collecting their iPads (see accompanying schedule). District technology officials were equally excited, saying this is a major change for the high school and one that potentially has no limits.

"If the teachers embrace it, it will fly here,” said Steve Staff, an assistant network administrator for the schools. "I think it can become a way to communicate with the kids like they’ve never communicated with them before.”

Added District Network Administrator John Ferrara, "This is really the first technology project we’ve hat that we won’t keep going. It’s really the teachers that will keep it moving. Having all of these iPads in student hands will be what the teachers make of it, and we have some great educators here who will utilize this to the fullest.”

The iPads have been specially programmed to block out social media websites and any other inappropriate content so that students absolutely cannot use them to access things of a non-educational nature. Students will be taking the iPads home, and parents are required to present identification and to purchase a small insurance policy so as to protect the machines if they’re damaged. Students and parents are also required to attend a short training when picking up their machines.

Having iPads at RHS is not a completely new experience.

Last year, the Freshman Academy ran a PILOT program where all incoming freshmen (now incoming sophomores) received iPads for the year. Administrators worked out the kinks in the program and ended up having great success using the new technology.

Those machines – which were iPad 2 models – will now be sent over to the Garfield Middle School, where students there will now participate in the first middle school PILOT program.

Meanwhile, students in the fifth grade at the Paul Revere Elementary and the Lincoln Elementary have been involved in a program now for nearly two years that has infused laptop computers into the classroom. Those students, however, cannot take the computers home and can use them only for limited amounts of time. Nevertheless, students and teachers at the schools have trumpeted the program as an overwhelming success.

RHS Principal Lourenço Garcia and Superintendent Paul Dakin said they were absolutely sold on the idea of moving forward with computers in every students’ hands. They both said they believed it was the way of the future and something that will be common throughout the country in only a few short years.

RHS will be one of the first districts in the state to put iPads in the hands of every high school students. However, they certainly aren’t the first.

Burlington rolled out an identical program at its high school two years ago, and Ferrara and Staff said they consulted and visited Burlington prior to rolling out Revere’s iPad program. Both said they received a lot of advice from the technology department in that district, advice that they believe will ease the transition and smooth out potential problems before they happen.

One piece of advice administrators relayed to parents this week was to get the insurance policy prior to coming to the pickup location. While parents and students can obtain the policy at the pick-up, administrators said a lot of time and frustration could be saved by getting the policy in advance and bringing the ‘proof of insurance’ form that can be printed out.

To get the policy prior to the picking up the iPad, go online to my.worthavegroup.com/ReverePS. Instructions on the website will guide parents through the process. Additionally, parents or guardians must accompany their children at the pickup, and parents must show a photo ID upon registration.

Sidebar –

All the rest of this week and into next week, the Revere High School will be teeming with students picking up their new iPads. Parents must accompany students to the pickup and must bring a photo ID. Anyone with questions can call (781) 286-8222. The following are the remaining pickup times in the RHS Fieldhouse (back entrance).

•Weds., Aug. 14th (Juniors), 4-7 p.m.

•Thurs., Aug. 15th (Seniors), 4-7 p.m.

•Monday, Aug. 19th (Freshmen), 9 a.m. – noon

•Tues., Aug. 20th (Sophomores), 9 a.m. – noon

•Weds., Aug. 21st (Juniors), 9 a.m. – noon

•Thurs., Aug. 22nd, 9 a.m. – noon

Cutline –

Incoming RHS freshman Dana Reyenger opens up his new iPad 4 Monday night at the RHS Fieldhouse as his parents, Maria Silva and Derek Reyenger, and friend, Matt Forti, look on with interest


Everett Receives Block Grant


City of Everett Receives Fy13 Community Development Block Grant

August 14, 2013

Mayor Carlo DeMaria is excited to announce that the City of Everett was recently awarded $900,000 in Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) from fiscal year 2013.  CDBG is a program created by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to provide communities with resources to address a wide range of unique community development needs.

The CDBG program works to ensure decent affordable housing, to provide services to the most vulnerable in communities, and to create jobs through the expansion and retention of businesses. CDBG is an important tool for helping local governments tackle serious challenges facing their communities. The CDBG program has made a difference in the lives of millions of people and their communities across the Nation.

With funding from the CDBG, the City will complete various projects, the first of which are targeted specifically towards the Lower Broadway ("South Everett”) neighborhood.  These projects include roadway improvements for Bow Street, as well as roadway reconstruction, sidewalk improvements, crosswalk improvements, and improvements for pedestrian mobility within the neighborhood.  In addition, the Mayor and his administration will provide 2-3 workshops to promote a model program for business assistance and economic development for the area. The City will provide additional assistance through the program to a selected group of businesses to enact best retail practice improvements.

Also through the use of CDBG funding, the City will complete a master plan of the Commercial Triangle Neighborhood.  The area is a mix of residential and commercial real estate and the Mayor has identified it as the next prime spot for redevelopment within the City. The goal of this reimaging project is to illustrate the possible infrastructure improvements, tax money, building permit fees, and most importantly, jobs for residents that a proper redevelopment can provide.

Working with five PSS agencies the City also plans to ensure funding goes to agencies with a strong track record of adhering to CDBG program requirements, and to provide services to Everett residents, with an emphasis on those providing services to Lower Broadway neighborhood residents.

In addition, the Mayor and his administration will expand the housing rehabilitation program currently funded through HOME. The targeted houses and properties will be located in the Lower Broadway neighborhood and will include funding for 2-4 projects depending on project size. Due to expanded housing rehabilitation program and economic development initiatives, administration funding will also be provided.

"The Lower Broadway neighborhood has long been neglected from a planning perspective and is prime for redevelopment”, states Mayor DeMaria, "The CDBG Grant is making available necessary funds that will assist and address vital needs for the area. These essential dollars will help create a more vigorous and thriving neighborhood.”


War of Words on Casino


War of Words on Casino

August 14, 2013

Mayor Carlo DeMaria’s press conference last Friday about Boston Mayor Thomas Menino’s  assertion that the Wynn Resorts is using Boston roads in their development plan has certainly raised the stakes for the Wynn casino proposal. The rhetoric between DeMaria, Menino, and Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone shows how contentious this development has become among these abutting community executives.

The people of Everett  overwhelmingly gave their support to the Wynn project when they voted in June.  But as we have mentioned previously, Everett is now in a waiting game. The State Gaming Commission will not make their decision until early next year as to which one of  three developers will be awarded the sole license for the Boston area.

Right now, time is on our side.  We again urge our public officials to dismiss this latest assertion by Boston and Somerville and demonstrate with facts and boundary lines that the Wynn Resorts proposal will share no land with either Boston or Somerville.

Words are great and we certainly want to believe what Mayor DeMaria is saying about this development being solely in Everett. However, the stakes are much too high for Boston or Somerville just to let this windfall go solely to Everett, while  putting up only a battle of words. We have no doubt they will take this matter  to court to thwart Everett’s bid if they perceive an opening to do so.

We fear that just a threat of a potential lawsuit will be enough for the Gaming Commission not to consider Everett’s proposal  as evidenced by their actions last week  with the Plainridge Race Track owners.

That is why indisputable facts are needed, not just words.


Making Everett Shine


Making Everett Shine

July 31, 2013

In today’s newspaper are stories about how the new beautification projects outside of City Hall on Church Street as well as in Everett Square and Norwood Street are close to being accomplished.

These projects look great and to the potential investor in Everett, they signal community pride.

This community pride is what we need not only to attract new residents and businesses but maintain those residents who now call Everett home.

Like most people, when you drive through a downtown, you notice what it looks like and how it is maintained.  Many say that Boston is undergoing a renaissance.  However, if you drive through the old business sections of Dorchester, you notice how many once beautiful buildings have been neglected and this neglect just makes one want to continue onto better surroundings.

City Planner James Errickson and Mayor Carlo DeMaria are to be congratulated for bringing to fruition these projects.


East Boston House moved to make room for expanded Savio school


Triple Decker Moved to Make Room for Expanded School at Savio Site

July 31, 2013
Construction crews move the Salesians’ residence on Bennington Street across Byron Street on Saturday. The move of the triple-decker is to make room for the Edward Brooke Charter School’s expansion of the former Savio High School. The Brooke will relocate there once construction is finished.

Construction crews move the Salesians’ residence on Bennington Street across Byron Street on Saturday. The move of the triple-decker is to make room for the Edward Brooke Charter School’s expansion of the former Savio High School. The Brooke will relocate there once construction is finished.

The moving of Salesians Boys and Girls Club Executive Director Father John Nazzaro’s house across Byron Street slowed traffic and drew a crowd Saturday.

Spectators lined the street and watched as the triple-decker at 619 Bennington St. was slowly lifted and then hauled across a city street. The entire process took most of the morning and early afternoon to complete.

Onlookers snapped photographs with cell phone cameras and recorded video of the rare sight. Many photos ended up on Facebook and some younger residents were amazed at how such a feat could be achieved.

After all it’s not everyday a large three family home is moved across an entire street in Eastie.

The house will now be permanently located in the Boys and Girls Club parking lot.

The moving of the Salesians’ residence is part of an ongoing project to develop the former Savio High School.

In February developers of the Edward Brooke Charter School in East Boston received Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) approval to convert the former Savio High School on Byron Street into the Brooke’s new home.

The $16.5 million expansion plans at the corner of Byron and Bennington Streets will allow the Brooke to move from its current location on Paris Street to the new Savio location.

In November it was announced that Diversified Project Management, Inc. (DPM), a Newton, based firm had been hired to provide comprehensive project management services for the Brooke facility in Eastie. The Commonwealth’s Designer Selection Board selected the team and the project is expected to complete for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Aside from Saturday’s relocating of one of the two Salesian houses on Bennington Street to the Boys and Girls Club parking lot across the street, DPM’s plans supported by the BRA include a major renovation to the existing 29,700 sq. ft. existing Savio building, demolish the other Salesian house at 617 Bennington Street and adding a 3-story, 13,100 sq. ft. addition to the existing school building.

Following a private developer’s decision to abandon his plans to build condos at the former Savio building last year, Brooke, which opened this year at the former home of the Salesians Boys & Girls Club on Paris Street, stepped in and bought the building.

Currently the Brooke is planning a 475 student, K-8 facility at Savio.

DPM is currently engaged in similar projects for the Codman Square Health & Education Center in Boston and for Westfield State University.

The Savio building has been empty for several years and requires extensive renovation. While the Paris Street facility is just a temporary home for the Brooke, the Savio facility will serve as the school’s permanent future home.

The mission of the Brooke Charter Schools is to provide an academically rigorous public education to students from the city of Boston and Chelsea that will ensure that they are prepared to enter into succeed in college. The school is named after Senator Edward W. Brooke, the first African-American elected to the U.S. Senate and the first and only black senator from Massachusetts. After attending Brooke alumni are have gone on to excel in high school and college, attending and succeeding in schools like Milton Academy, Boston Latin Academy, and University of Massachusetts – Amherst.


Government Center close down postponed.

Shut Down Government Center Stop
July 31, 2013

It was no secret people in East Boston were pretty unhappy that the project to fix all the wall panels in the Callahan Tunnel would coincide with a two-year closure of the Government Center MBTA station.

However, it was announced this week that the MBTA would hold off on the closure of Government Center until work on the tunnel was complete.

MassDOT planned to close the tunnel for three months beginning in January and begin a $34.9 million project to rehab the 52-year old tunnel’s deck, curb line, gutters and replace the tunnel’s wall panels.

Residents complained that the tunnels closure coupled with the Government Center closure beginning in the fall would cause a commuting nightmare for thousands of Eastie residents trying to get back to the neighborhood during the afternoon rush hour.

The timing was particularly bad because the dual closure of the tunnel and train station would be in the dead of winter.

Senator Anthony Petruccelli, Representative Carlo Basile and Boston City Councilor Sal LaMattinasuccessfully lobbied state officials to delay the closure of Government Center until the Callahan Tunnel project was done.

"It was going to be a terrible three month inconvenience for resident of East Boston if we allowed these two major projects to coincide,” said City Councilor Sal LaMattina. "This is a win for Eastie commuters because they will still have access to Government Center until the Callahan Tunnel project is complete.”

LaMattina said he heard a lot of complaints from residents that closing the two key points of travel for residents at the same time was poor planning by the state.

"Both projects are crucial to improving aging infrastructure but I agree with residents that work downtown that having these two major redevelopment projects going on at the same time would have a devastating impact on residents,” said LaMattina.

LaMattina added that popular restaurants like Rino’s, K.O. Pies, Santarpio’s Pizza and Ecco that have all become destination spots for people on the other side of the tunnel would have also been impacted.

"There would have been no easy way for customers of these establishments to get over to East Boston if both the Callahan Tunnel and Government Center were closed at the same time,” said LaMattina. "It would have been unfair to expect our small businesses to bear the burden of these two projects going on simultaneously.”
After removing 117 wall panels from the Callahan Tunnel in December 2013 and an additional two-dozen panels from the adjoining Sumner Tunnel, MassDOT decided to remove all 2,400 panels from the Callahan.

The removal of the panels came after a 100 lb. wall panel in the tunnel fell off the wall of the tunnel and landed in the road. The panels, which date back to the 1990s, are 9 ft. by 4 ft. and replaced older panels in order to give the tunnel a better look and reflect light for improved visibility in the tunnel for motorists.

After the panel fell, MassDOT was forced to shut down the Callahan so inspectors could perform a ‘pull test’ on the panels that line the tunnel.

After the inspections it was found that 117 panels did not pass the pull test and had to be removed. MassDOT officials said the framing holding the panels in place had corroded.

The proposed work schedule includes a full tunnel closure with detours in place and posted for approximately three months beginning in January 2014, followed by an additional 4-5 months of work requiring overnight closures between 11p.m. and 5 a.m.


Everett former receiver pleads guilty


Former City Receiver Pleads Guilty to Stealing: Roccia Gets Probation, Community Service and $16k Restitution Bill

July 24, 2013

Former city receiver William Roccia, 42, of Hollywood, Florida and formerly of Everett, pleaded guilty on June 27 in Middlesex Superior Court to a charge of larceny over $250, and has been sentenced to two years probation, 40 hours of community service and to pay restitution of $16,855 to the city.

Roccia worked for the city from 2006 until 2012 as a receiver, a position that required him to collect and track payments to city departments. As part of his duties, Roccia was charged with collecting permit fees and fines for the building department and then turning those monies over to the Treasurer’s Office.

Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan commended the investigation of the City of Everett and Everett Police Department in the case.

"Any time a public employee violates the trust of their community and taxpayers they mist be held accountable for their actions,” said Ryan, in announcing the guilty plea. "This defendant stole from the city and then attempted to quickly move to another state to avoid being caught. I applaud the work of the city of Everett and the Everett Police Department for investigating this theft of public monies.”

According to the District Attorney’s office, the theft was uncovered beginning in May 2012, after the city had hired an outside auditing firm to assist its fiscal department. At the end of May 2012, Roccia, abruptly resigned his position, giving just five days notice and moved to Florida.

In July 2012, the city started to receive calls from individuals who reported that checks they had written to the city building permit fees had not been cashed. The city and the Everett Police launched an investigation.

The investigation revealed that from January 2012 to May 2012, the building department had generated $154,000 in revenues through permit fees and fines, all of which had passed through the hands of the defendant. None of the checks that were collected during that time had been cashed and of the $154,000 generated, some $16,855 in cash fees was never recovered.


Sand Scultures at Revere Beach


Sand Sculpture "Strong” Finish: Security Concerns Took Festival to Unexpected Higher Level

July 24, 2013

After months and months of planning for this year’s Sandsculpting Festival on Revere Beach, State Police and top state public safety officials approached the Revere Beach Partnership not long after the Boston Marathon bombings and told the organization it had to scrap it’s plans and start all over.

It was a painful blow to an organization that was breaking in a new, but capable, executive director and one that was in the final stages of planning one of the largest spectator events in eastern Massachusetts.

But the concerns were real, and State Police were worried that having everyone bunched up in a small area around the Bandstand would be inviting disaster if terrorists were to target the Festival.

And so, according to Partnership President John Hamel, they did a major re-tooling and ended up putting together a festival that probably turned out better than had there been no terrorism concerns.

"After the bombings in Boston, the State Police came to us not long after and told us we needed to change the layout of the Festival – to spread it out and move the location,” said Hamel. "That was just a few months before the Festival. We ended up having to stretch it from the Bandstand to the new pedestrian bridge. That’s a lot of space to fill, but it worked and it might be the new home for this event. It’s ironic that the biggest step forward for our event was the result of a tragedy happening in Boston. We were told to spread out by the State Police. They would have never asked us to do that, but they had to take those kinds of precautions after the Marathon. It ended up leading us to an increased footprint that surpassed our expectations…I think across all dimensions it was a success.”

What the terrorism precautions caused the Partnership to do is enlarge the festival, adding many more Food Trucks, creating a temporary promenade/boardwalk, adding a professional music stage, creating a fitness stage, doubling the fireworks display, implementing a metal detector treasure hunt and – in the process – delivering more than 500,000 people to Revere Beach on one of the hottest weekends in the summer.

"We switched gears quickly and turned it more into a Beach festival and less of a street festival,” said Hamel. "It was turning Revere Beach Boulevard into a boardwalk or promenade for a weekend and I think we succeeded. I have that Norman Gautreau picture of the Boulevard in the old days and I don’t know if that was my total inspiration, but when I thought about what a boardwalk on the Boulevard needed to look like, I thought about that picture.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he was impressed with the new layout and the crowd that was attracted.

"I think it was planned and carried out incredibly well,” he said. "It seemed as though the thousands of people there were enjoying themselves. I think the fireworks display on Sunday certainly rivaled any display I’ve seen. I think it showcased the city in a very positive light to those visiting our Beach, and I think that our residents should be proud of what we were able to provide over three days down there.”

Part of the success of that new layout came from adding five more sandsculptors to the competition and locating them further up the Beach and closer to the sidewalk. That not only solved some of the terrorism concerns, but also solved a frequent complaint about handicap accessibility.

Using the sculptures and enlarged musical stage as one side of the promenade, Hamel said they propped up the other side with Food Trucks, a larger kiddie carnival and other vendors/promotions.

The Food Trucks, he said, were being touted as an early victory.

Hamel said one goal was to reduce electricity and cleaning costs, and another was to increase the quality of food offered at the Festival. He said the Partnership believes they accomplished both with the mobile Food Trucks.

"For most of Friday and Saturday it was too hot to eat and some were concerned the trucks were not going to succeed,” he said. "Then as Saturday evening approached and Sunday came, I think the Food Trucks blew past every expectation they had. I think they were pleased and the crowd loved them. I think it was an absolute success and they are a winner at the Festival. We wanted restaurant quality food on the Beach and I think it was night and day with the quality of food we delivered this year.”

The key element to being able to enlarge the Festival on such short notice was the evolution of interested sponsors – sponsors who didn’t see the Festival as a charity cause, but rather as a great opportunity. Hamel said that was reflected well by the interest of GEICO Insurance.

"When I took over last year for my three-year term, I wanted to get the Festival to where it was a self-sufficient event,” he said. "I didn’t want it to be a charitable donation we had to go out and beg for, but rather a marketing investment for companies to showcase their products and services. We turned a corner with that this year. GEICO called us. That was a huge turning point. Brands are now recognizing us as a great marketing opportunity and a great cause all rolled into one.”

With that in mind, Hamel said the Partnership would soon begin going out and looking for a title sponsor next year – something they have never done before but they believe they can accomplish.

That goes to the point that the Festival is seemingly teetering on the edge of a very large growth curve. With the new layout tested and approved, and the sculptors flocking back each year, Hamel said the event is poised for national acclaim.

"Long ago it became more of a regional event and less of a local festival,” he said. "We’ve reached a tipping point this year. There’s an inflection point where an event goes towards being a national event. We’re not there yet, but I think we’re really close. At the level of quality for an organization, I think we’re moving towards being one of the nation’s premiere beach events. That’s where we’re going.”


Revere Parcel H to be developed.


Parcel H Development Close to Starting

July 24, 2013

A Dover developer has taken one important step this month in moving forward on the massive Parcel H private development at Waterfront Square – a development straddling the new pedestrian bridge and plaza and considered a key component in the success or failure of Wonderland Station’s $500 million facelift.

The Roclid Development Group has presented preliminary plans for Parcel H development in two phases to the City’s Site Plan Review committee and is in the midst of doing due diligence on the project.

Phase 1 of the project would include 142 residential units in a building that will sit on the south side of the existing plaza next to the Carabetta buildings. That building also has plans for 35,500 sq. ft. of retail spaces on the ground floors.

"It looks to be high-end residential construction, all steel construction,” said Economic Development Director John Festa. "The breakdown there is more one-bedrooms than two-bedrooms – about a 70-30 split right now, but that could change. They’re looking to bring in some restaurants and shops to the retail portion, and they look to be more on the high end scale. I’m told they’ve heard from some real quality restaurants.”

The second phase of the proposal looks to hit on a much-needed Beach business – a large hotel under a major hotel chain’s flag.

"The second phase would be a 300 to 400 room hotel,” Festa said. "They have various flags they are considering and they are very nice flags that we’re excited about.”

The hotel development would be located on the north side of the parcel.

An attempt to reach the Roclid Group was unsuccessful, and one number listed for them was a private residence. There was no business phone number listed in obvious places, nor was there a website for the company.

They are based in Dover and are headed up by Patrick Corrigan.

EuroVest President Joe DiGangi – who is the designated developer for the entire Waterfront Square – said the plans for Roclid Group are still very preliminary.

He said they have some milestones to meet by Aug. 15th, and after that he would be better able to comment on where they’re at in pursuing the project.

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he was glad to see Roclid Group take the next step in going to Site Plan Review.

"We’ve been talking to Roclid for a year and a half now…and I’m glad some of their plans are finally coming to fruition and getting to Site Plan Review because that’s where the rubber meets the road. I’ve been to too many groundbreakings where all we end up with is the ceremonial shovels.”

Additionally, the privately-held parking lot next to Parcel H – owned by Al D’Amico – has been in the midst of negotiations with Roclid also.

"We obviously want to incorporate that at some point in the overall development,” said Festa. "There are definitely discussions going on between the parties.”


Everett's Casino chances in jeapardy


Menino’s Threat on Wynn’s Casino

July 24, 2013

For those of us who know Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, his threat to scuttle the Wynn casino development in Everett (since it is being built on a sliver of Boston land) should be a reason for concern for officials in Everett. Mayor Menino is a politician from the old school who knows how to get what he wants — and what the Mayor wants is the casino and its revenue solely for the City of Boston.

Menino has said that since the Wynn proposal has that sliver of Boston land in the development, then Boston must be designated as a host community.  And since the Mayor is unwilling to provide a host agreement to Wynn, the Wynn proposal effectively cannot go forward.

We know that there may be more than a grain of truth to Mayor Menino’s threat, since both Steve Wynn and Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria were careful to say in the beginning of their process in December that the Boston land was not to be used in the development. But the property lines that are in contention go back to the 1600’s and since Boston and Everett are in different counties, the ambiguity can be all the more difficult to properly adjudicate.

This action by Menino may be a small skirmish in the Boston-area casino fight.  The larger fight rests with getting a host community agreement written and presented to East Boston voters. Revere Mayor Dan Rizzo and his staff have already drawn up their host community agreement and are ready to have the Revere voters decide on the project.  We urge Boston city officials quickly to draw up  their host agreement. Wynn has come in with his proposal at the 11th hour, capitalizing on all of the work accomplished by Chip Tuttle over the past seven years. Without a host community agreement, Wynn would win by default. We are not at this juncture debating whether the casino should be built — we believe that the voters of  East Boston and Revere should decide this question.  What we are advocating is for a Boston host community agreement so this issue can be decided in a plebiscite as soon as possible.


Photos of Sand Sculpters at Revere Beach

Sandsculpting Festival, July 18th
July 19, 2013


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Sculptures to begin July 17th


Sandsculpting Festival Ready to Start on July 17

July 10, 2013

With all of the fun and entertainment that has now become part of the Revere Beach National Sandsculpting Festival, one thing that can tend to get lost in the pre-festival publicity is the actual Sandsculpting.

However, once the show gets on the road July 17th – marking the Festival’s 10th Anniversary – it will be rather hard to miss the biggest and best field of carving competitors Revere Beach has ever seen.  In fact, some are touting the 15-person field as the largest competition on the East Coast.

"Last year we only had 10 competitors and this year we’ll have 15 sculptors in the field,” said Amanda Gourgue, executive director of the Revere Beach Partnership. "It has been exciting to add sculptors and this being our 10th anniversary, we wanted to go big. It is the most that the Revere Beach festival has ever had. We already have the most fans and now we want to have the most sculptors.”

This year, the larger field will be spread out over a larger area, giving sculptors and spectators more room to move about – and hopefully alleviating the jam-packed crowds (sometimes 10 people deep) during the weekend days.

There are six new sculptors in the competition and nine sculptors that are returning for another shot at the Revere title – a prize that is becoming more and more coveted worldwide amongst the small sand sculpting community.

Of the six new competitors, three are from outside of the U.S. – with two from Holland and one from Latvia. One of the newest competitors is Rusty Croft of California, who starred for two years on the Travel Channel show ‘Sand Masters.’ Alongside fellow Revere Beach returning competitors Sue McGrew (Tacoma, WA) and Chris Guinto (Key West), Croft starred in 25 episodes of the reality TV show detailing the life of a professional sand sculptor.

He will be joined by one of the oldest competitors on the circuit (and perhaps the sculptor with the best name), 71-year-old Amazin’ Walter McDonald of S. Padre Island, TX. McDonald has been carving sand since the early 1980s and taught his craft to many of those who now compete against him on the professional circuit. With a look that appears to be a cross between ZZ Top and the Grateful Dead, McDonald is likely to be a character and a fan favorite – much as Acapulco, Mexico native Ben Probanza has been over the last two years.

The new sculptors will be ready to do battle with three-time champion Jonathan ‘Jobi’ Bouchard (Montreal), who has proven to be one of the best sculptors in the field year after year. Jobi will be shooting for an unprecedented fourth title in a row this year.

The entire field of sculptors will include:

•Dan Doubleday (Treasure Island, FL)

•Dan Belcher (St. Louis)

•Jobi (Montreal)

•Croft (Carmel, CA) *new sculptor

•Justin Gordon (Groveland, MA)

•Chris Guinto (Key West)

•Marianne Guinto (Key West) *new sculptor

•Sandis Kondrats (Latvia) *new sculptor

•Amazin’ Walter McDonald (S. Padre Island, TX) *new sculptor

•Sue McGrew (Tacoma, WA)

•Benjamin Probanza (Acapulco, Mexico)

•Wilfred Stijger (Holland) *new sculptor

•Steve Topazio (Tiverton, RI)

•Edith van de Wetering (Holland) *new sculptor

•Lucinda Wierenga (S. Padre Island, TX)

Preparations for the competition will begin today, July 10th, as competition directors Meredith Corson and Dan Doubleday of Sanding Ovations return to the Beach to begin putting things in order. Sanding Ovations has successfully run the competition and centerpiece sculpture for several years, and they have developed quite a love for Revere Beach and the more than 500,000 fans that descend upon the area every year.

Some 350 tons of special carving sand from New Hampshire will arrive on the Beach Friday, July 12th, and sculptors will begin working on the always-popular centerpiece sculpture Saturday, July 13th.

This year, organizers aren’t yet giving any kind of hints as to what the centerpiece theme might be, though it will reflect what is happening in Revere and the surrounding areas.

"To see this year’s sculpture theme, you will have to come down to the Beach,” said Gourgue.

After four days of carving out several hundred tons of sand, competitors will begin working on their allotment of 12 tons of sand Wednesday, July 17th. This year, competitors will have four days to work on their masterpieces, with the competition winding down at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

As always, the sculptors will judge each other’s work, but not their own, using the Sanding Ovations Report Card System. They will be judging each other on the following six categories: Overall impact/Wow factor, Quality of Carving, Usage of Sand, Degree of Difficulty, Originality and Artistic Impression. There will also be a People’s Choice Award so that Festival participants have a say in which creation is their favorite.

Throughout the competition, there will also be children sand sculpting lessons that start on Wednesday, July 17th and run through Saturday, July 20th. Each day the lessons are at 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Interested participants need to sign up 30 minutes prior to class time and it is first come, first serve.

Lessons will be taught this year by Sandi ‘Castle’ Stirling and Raymond Poirier – both of Dundas, Ontario.

Gourgue said the competition part of the Festival is taking a step up this year and really becoming a signature event for those who compete on the professional circuit.

"I know the people who have done this competition in the past do keep their calendar clear for this Festival,” said Gourgue. "When they come once, they usually return and Revere Beach has developed a strong reputation out there, we’re told. I think it is because we’re always trying to improve things. This year we’re taking our Festival to a new level and it will set a precedent for the future. Going forward, we’ll look at whether we add two new sculptors every year or one new sculptor. It really gives us momentum.”

She also said not to forget the events surrounding the fun in the sand.

"The whole thing is going to be above and beyond,” she said. "It will be like three festivals in one. There will be the sand sculpting, entertainment non-stop all weekend long and then the extensive amount of food trucks. We’re going to have more food trucks than most Food Truck Festivals.”

For more information on the Revere Beach National Sand Sculpting Festival, visit www.NationalSandSculptingFestival.com.


Pedestrian Bridge open s in Revere


Wondy Pedestrian Bridge, Plaza Opens Quietly

July 10, 2013
In the photo: an overview from above of the new Plaza and Pedestrian Bridge stretching from Wonderland Station to Revere Beach.

In the photo: an overview from above of the new Plaza and Pedestrian Bridge stretching from Wonderland Station to Revere Beach.

With little fanfare, the fences came down and, finally, the pedestrian bridge and plaza at Wonderland Station opened to the public last week.

Now, what looks to be the newest signature landmark for Revere Beach is ready for the eager feet of those headed to the Beach from the MBTA.

"We were substantially completed with the project in February 2013, but there were some things that were slow in coming to us like the railings and the dampening system, but they started trickling in over the last few months,” said consultant Paul Rupp. "The state building inspector signed off on it Friday, June 28th, and so, we decided to open it up to the public last week. I think it’s a very elegant and exciting feature that is added to the Beach, especially at night when it’s illuminated. There are LED lights embedded in the rails and up above too. They can be programmed for limitless combinations of colors. I think it’s pretty striking.”

So far, most Beach-goers haven’t fully discovered the bridge or the plaza. Mostly, it remains empty due to the fact that it is located in a bit of a dead zone on the Beach and also due to the fact that people are so used to crossing Ocean Avenue at grade.

That emptiness, though, is expected to change as the learning curve sets in and the larger private Waterfront Square development begins to creep out of the ground.

Those who have discovered it are shocked when they stumble upon the huge expanse of the new plaza and the miniature Zakim Bridge stretching towards the ocean. (the bridge was actually designed by the same man who designed the Zakim Bridge in Boston and is patterned after it purposefully).

"Wow!” and "Where did this come from?” are commonly heard as people walk out of the Station or the Parking Garage into an unexpected new feature.

"I think it’s awesome,” said Ashley Aguilar of Boston, who was directed to the bridge by an MBTA worker this Monday afternoon. "It reminds me so much of the Zakim Bridge in Boston. We didn’t know it was here at all. We were having trouble finding the Beach from the Station and a T worker showed us how to get up here.”

Added her friend, Jackie Fuentes, also of Boston, "I think it is really nice. It makes it a lot easier to get to the Beach, especially with kids or a stroller.”

Rupp said he had made some observations and found that people have found the bridge and do appreciate it.

"People have discovered it, and when they do discover it, they really, really like it,” he said.

The idea of putting a walking bridge to the Beach from Wonderland Station is nothing new, Rupp said, but was something that became doable only recently.

"That was a very old idea we have had floating around since I was a Planning Director for the City in the 1970s,” he said. "It was way back then that they put pedestrian access in a master plan for Wonderland. It was for aesthetic and safety reasons. It was always in the works and always something we always felt we’d do at some point. We took a run at it with this project and it succeeded.”

One of the only drawbacks to the project, however, has been the long delay – and to note, the elevators still do not function yet. Rupp said part of the problem was abiding by the rules of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (the Stimulus Bill), which funded a majority of the bridge and plaza.

"There are a lot of very customized features for the bridge which had to be manufactured just for the bridge – things like the railings,” he said. "We had to deal with the Buy American provisions of the [Stimulus], which means we had to buy everything from American companies and that led to some delays. We could have bought things in Germany and had this done six months earlier, but American was required and it was like a Catch-22.”

Now, Beach advocates and state officials are looking for ways to make use of the new feature.

Already, the Revere Beach Farmer’s Market has committed to using the plaza this summer, and they will set up there again this Thursday, and will continue there through October.


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Everett's Farmers Marjket a Success


Farmer’s Market Holds Successful Opening Day

July 10, 2013
Farmers, artists and musicians were all part of the opening day of the Everett Farmer's Market held on July 3.

Farmers, artists and musicians were all part of the opening day of the Everett
Farmer’s Market held on July 3.

Mayor Carlo DeMaria and Energize Everett are happy to report a successful opening day of the Everett Farmer’s Market, which was held on July 3rd.  Farmers, artists, musicians, and several members of the community enjoyed the beautiful afternoon.  Residents are encouraged to come and be part of the excitement every Wednesday, from 2:00-6:00 PM in Everett Square in the Municipal Parking Lot next to Braza Grill.

Market Highlights:

SNAP, WIC, and Senior Coupons accepted. Double your SNAP dollars with Market Bux.

Fresh locally grown produce from Massachusetts farmers

Specialty items such as handmade jewelry and soaps

New this year-Musician’s Corner! Performances from local musicians and artists

Children’s activities such as face painting and craft projects

Community outreach from local organizations

This week’s schedule is just as exciting! You can look forward to seeing:


Nagog Hill Farm

Phalla’s Produce

Brandywine Farms

Specialty Vendors

Roberto’s Seafood

Unique Boutique

CN Faces

Entertainment/Community Groups

Musician’s Corner



First Baptist Church of EverettFor additional information, visit the Energize Everett website energizeeverett.wix.com/energizeeverett, call the Energize Everett office at 617-389-3365, or email energizeeverett@ci.everett.ma.us.


East Boston, Revere, Chelsea & Everett beat back ethanol train


Global Withdraws Request for Ethanol Trains

July 3, 2013

When everyone was ready to give up on fighting off Global Petroleum’s Ethanol train plan, State Sens. Anthony Petruccelli (D-Eastie) and Sen. Sal DiDomenico decided to get creative.

Joining a dedicated crowd of residents from Eastie, Chelsea, Revere and Everett, they did the unthinkable – they rewrote the licensing laws to block the Global proposal and then put up the fight of their lives.

This week, after two years of turmoil, that plan came to a screeching halt as Global informed state leaders and local advocates that it was abandoning its proposal to bring in approximately 180 million gallons per year of Ethanol to Revere via trains on the commuter rail.

Global officials confirmed the news late on Monday afternoon.

"I am confirming we will be withdrawing our application to the DEP for the permit,” Global attorney and spokesman Ed Faneuil told the newspaper. "By withdrawing the application [to the DEP] we are withdrawing the application to receive Ethanol by rail at the facility [in Revere]…We are thankful to the communities of the Commonwealth for their input during the permit process and the folks on the Hill for considering our application and the officials at the various state agencies for reviewing our permit. We want to look forward to serving the energy needs of the Commonwealth in an ongoing basis.”

Grass Roots Victory

The news is being hailed as one of the largest grass-roots victories in decades, and folks like Ed O’Hara in Revere, Roseann Bongiovanni in Chelsea, Gail Miller in East Boston and Boston Environmental Attorney Staci Rubin are at the nucleus of the victory.

"It’s not every day you get to take on a Fortune 500 company and win,” said Petruccelli. "This was a big ‘Wow.’

History of the Project

Petruccelli and DiDomenico said they were in the midst of celebrating a legislative win on the Ethanol issue Monday when Global representatives paid them a visit. Faneuil told the state senators in a face-to-face meeting that Global would withdraw their request for a Chapter 91 waterways license from the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), and thus abandon the plan to bring in Ethanol trains to Revere.

From there, the news spread like wildfire.

Bongiovanni said there is a press conference wrap-up scheduled for Wednesday at the Chelsea Commuter Rail stop, where Ethanol trains would have rolled through twice a week.

The two-year saga began in April 2011 at a heated Revere Conservation Commission meeting where Bongiovanni, the Chelsea Collaborative and members of the Friends of Belle Isle Marsh expressed major concerns. At that time, Global indicated they were interested in bringing two, 60-car trains into the terminal per week – which would result in 180 million gallons of Ethanol per year. Global’s plan was to bring it at night over the commuter rail lines from the Devens Intermodal.

Not long after that, the Revere City Council held an informational meeting in which Revere resident Guida Rita Falzerone – who is also involved with the Chelsea Collaborative – spent about an hour alerting councillors and the public to the possible threat.

That’s when O’Hara got involved, noting the "done deal” statement.

For nearly two years, Global was silent on the issue while advocates, officials and lawmakers wrote letters, held meetings and even conducted a controversial six-month state Department of Transportation study on the transport of Ethanol by rail.

A Legislative Breakthrough

The breakthrough for the community in the fight came just after Memorial Day this year when Petruccelli and DiDomenico were able to re-write the Chapter 91 regulations within the State Budget – a re-write that served to basically block Global from getting its waterways license.

"We were up against the federal railroads and pre-emptive statutes that really didn’t allow local government and state government to intervene,” Petruccelli said. "That’s why we had to come up with a creative approach that was very respectful and very calculated and that’s how we proceeded.”

That budget amendment is still on the table – having passed the legislature last weekend – and is currently awaiting approval from Gov. Deval Patrick. Many are still fighting for the amendment, despite Global’s withdrawal. There is a sense that Patrick might veto the amendment, but it is still up in the air.

However, with it in place tentatively – along with a legal setback in a lawsuit Global had filed against the DEP for delaying their license – Global seemed to want to fold its cards.

Faneuil said he wanted to stress that the company had no hard feelings and believed everyone had conducted themselves professionally. For Chelsea and Revere, which both have Global terminals, it was rather odd to be at odds with the oil giant – as they have existed for years on very good terms.

"I want to mirror those comments made about Global to reflect the interactions that Global had with the entire community and the legislators, with all of them being gentlemen and gentleladies during the entire engagement,” he concluded.

Cutline -

Hailing from Chelsea, Revere and Eastie, members of the grass-roots group that stood in opposition to the Global Petroleum Ethanol train plan gathered to celebrate Tuesday morning on the commuter rail tracks in Chelsea – a spot that the Ethanol trains would have rumbled through at least twice a week during the nighttime hours. Pictured here are (left to right) Judie Dyer, Anthony Orellana, Gladys Vega, Marangely Vasquez, Roseann Bongiovanni, Jovanna Garcia-Soto, David Mussina, John Kennard, Kim Foltz, Rita Falzarano and Attorney Staci Rubin.


Malden Democrat wins the hearts of Voters


Voters Like Markey for U.S. Senate

July 3, 2013

Revere’s former Congressman Ed Markey (D-Malden) easily bested Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez by a vote of 60 percent to 39 percent in the local vote to take his place in the elite company of the U.S. Senate.

The overall statewide vote was a little bit closer than Revere’s results, with a vote of 55 percent for Markey and 45 percent for Gomez.

However, low voter turnout was absolutely similar in Revere as it was statewide, with only 24 percent of the 25,000 registered voters showing up at the polls last Tuesday, June 25th.

In Revere, 5,946 ballots were cast, with Markey getting 3,567 – about the same number as the top vote-getter in recent Revere City Council at-large races.

Markey tore through the Revere precincts, scoring 80 percent of the vote in the areas of Ward 2.

Gomez didn’t win a single precinct in Revere, though he did come within a few votes of winning in Ward 5-1 and Ward 6-2.

With the win, Markey leaves his Congressional seat vacant. That will lead to another special election within the district – which runs from Winthrop all the way to the Metro West communities.

While many were mum on running, the field has become crowded as of late, though no one from the immediate area is considering joining the crowd.

Candidates so far include:

•Middlesex County Sheriff Peter J. Koutoujian

•Medford State Rep. Carl Sciortino

•Belmont Sen. Will Brownsberger

•Melrose Sen. Katherine Clark

•Ashland Sen. Karen Spilka

An election schedule has yet to be determined due to the fact that Markey hasn’t been sworn in. It is believed that the special election would likely take place in December.


Revere celebrates 4th of July


July 4th Celebration at Hill Pk.

July 3, 2013

The City’s Parks and Recreation Department will host a family celebration for the Fourth of July on Thursday, July 4th, at Hill Park.

The free event will last from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will feature music, pony rides, inflatables, a petting zoo, face painting, a BBQ, slush, cotton candy and entertainment.


Revere Beach Sand Sculptures scheduled for July 19th


Sand Sculpture Gearing Up at Revere Beach

July 3, 2013

In only a few short weeks, sand sculptors from all over the world will arrive on Revere Beach and will begin entertaining the throngs of spectators with unique sand creations as part of the festival’s all-important 10th Anniversary.

Hundreds of thousands of spectators are expected to hit the Beach from July 19th to the 21st to take in the now-famous sculpting competition on its 10th year in operation.

Already, Amanda Gourgue, new executive director of the Revere Beach Partnership, said they have some exciting changes to build on what was an eye catching and fun festival last year.

"John Hamel did an amazing job when he came in last year and revamped the things the Partnership had done with the Festival,” she said. "He brought in excitement and new ideas and features. The way we’re looking at it is we have a lot of new things on the Beach and I am hoping to bring more energy this year for our 10th Anniversary.”

One of the new features this year will be the addition of the trendy food truck industry. Several food trucks will be stationed on the Beach, including those of Revere residents James DiSabatino (Roxy’s Gourmet Grilled Cheese) and Rich Cambriello (Bone Daddy’s Burgers).

Back will be the kids rides, community exhibits and arts and crafts. However, the sculptors will be spread out a little more this year.

"We will expand the sculpting area,” said Gourgue. "We want to make it a little more roomy and stretch it further down the Beach so it’s not so crowded. That’s a lot of people right now in a little area.”

One area of major emphasis will be the Interactive Learning Center for kids – an idea that has not yet been fully realized.

"I’m really excited about the Learning Center and I’m really trying to build it up this year,” she said. "We’ll have the Franklin Park Zoo there and the Museum of Science has interest. I’m excited because I really want an educational component. Also, because the Piping Plovers are already on the Beach, we’re going to have a program about them with the DCR Ranger.”

Additionally, last week the Partnership announced that Minelab metal detectors will be on the Beach for the Festival and will offer Beach-goers an opportunity to go treasure hunting.

Minelab, who’s earned a reputation among treasure hunting enthusiasts as manufacturer of "The World’s Best Metal Detection Technologies,” will enlist beach visitors to register for a "Treasure Quest” session.  That’s where visitors can use a Minelab metal detector in a sectioned off portion of the beach to locate seeded coins and other special tokens that can be redeemed for great prizes. The best part is that it’s all free of charge and everyone who participates walks away with at least a nice giveaway prize.

"Our Treasure Quest event is geared to share the fun and intriguing hobby of metal detecting,” explained Gary Schafer, general manager of the Minelab Americas. "Remember how you dreamed of finding buried treasure as a child? Now you get to do it for real, and bring along the entire family to enjoy the thrill of a hunt.”

Minelab has scheduled four hunts each day that consist of three separate heats. Those who find special tokens and keys throughout the day will be put into a daily drawing to win a metal detecting backpack filled with supplies, a beach kit or a new Minelab metal detector.

While the metal detecting hobby has been around for about a half century, outdoors-minded people rarely think about bringing a metal detector along with them when camping, hiking, fishing or hunting.  But a metal detector is one of the few recreational opportunities that can actually ‘pay you back’ by helping you locate coins, jewelry, gold nuggets, meteorites or historic artifacts like bullets and buttons from the Civil and Revolutionary War periods

Minelab will have expert detectorists available for consultation and instruction at Revere Beach during the NSSF.  At the end of each day, the Minelab experts will put on a demonstration in a seeded hunt contest to see who can find the most treasure.

Gourgue indicated that there will also be the traditional fireworks show on the Beach Saturday evening, July 20th, around 9 p.m.


Chelsea Senior Center contribute to Art Walk


Prolific Quilters at Senior Center Help Garden During Art Walk

June 14, 2013
Chelsea Senior Center Quilters Mary Frangiamone, Helen Howard, Irene Malachowski, Eileen Gregory and Angela Panarese. Missing is founder Jean Perry. Panarese made the quilt shown here by hand and it will be available in the raffle for the Community Garden this weekend on the Chelsea Art Walk.

Chelsea Senior Center Quilters Mary Frangiamone, Helen
Howard, Irene Malachowski, Eileen Gregory and Angela
Panarese. Missing is founder Jean Perry. Panarese made
the quilt shown here by hand and it will be available in
the raffle for the Community Garden this weekend on the
Chelsea Art Walk.

The Chelsea Senior Center is a place where most of the City’s older crowd goes to relax.

That’s not the case, though, for several ladies who have created nothing short of a quilt factory on the second floor of the Center, overlooking City Hall Square.

Sitting at the sewing machine chugging along with nary a need for a break is Mary Frangiamone. Jean Perry – the founder of the group – uses the scissors like a surgeon and Eileen Gregory – another founder – puts them all together quickly. There is rarely a moment or a movement wasted.

Angela Panarese, on the other hand, provides the entertainment – or so she says.

"We all started doing this every Friday 10 years ago,” said affable Essex Street resident Panarese. "We buy our own materials and collect our own scraps to sew together. It’s about like a factory here. Eileen puts them together and Jean cuts them out. I do all the big talkin’ or I go get them coffee.”

Far from it, though.

While Panarese, who will soon be 90, is full of jokes, she is also full of the ability to quilt at a rapid pace – like the other ladies in the quilting circle.

For the third straight year, Panarese has made a quilt by hand for the Chelsea Community Garden – a piece that will be auctioned off to help the group buy a new shade shelter.

"We’re going to have Angela’s quilt in our raffle that will happen during the Art Walk this weekend,” said Community Gardener Margaret Carsley. "We’ve made about $1,000 over the two years, which is going t pay for our new shade shelter. Angela has a plot in the garden and told us she wanted to do whatever she could to help. The quilt will more than help, I’m guessing.”

Panarese said she has lived on the same street for more than 80 years – and has found a nice place to do her sewing overlooking the Creek and the Boston skyline.

"I found that I love quilting,” she said. "It’s like putting a jigsaw puzzle together. I don’t use a pattern. I collect little scraps of material and put them all together. What I really love to do is sit by my window and work. I’m right across from where the Coast Guard Station used to be. I just watch the boats go by and sew away. I love that.”

The group began in order to make quilts for homeless children and for babies with AIDS in the hospital at Boston Medical Center. Since then, they’ve also made quilts for the Women’s Club, Rosie’s Place Shelter, the Chelsea Firefighters, Beverly School for the Deaf, TheatreZone/Appolinaire and St. Rose Church.

Panarese said that putting the scraps together into quilts is a testament to her true Chelsea rags to riches story.

"I really do have a true rags to riches story in Chelsea because I started working in rag shops here – Beacon Supply, which was a rag shop,” she said with a laugh. "My cousin got us up out of bed one day and said they were hiring at the rag shop and we had better get down there. That was the worst job I ever had – sorting out rags with rubbish in it and everything. I couldn’t wait to get out of there.”

And when she was 18, Panarese said she got out of there and got hired at her father’s work, TRW/United Carr in Cambridge’s Kendall Square. She helped build the framework of airplanes during World War II.

"My father worked there and that’s the only reason I got out of the rag shop and in there,” she said. "My dad had to bribe the guy who did the hiring. It took four Enrico Caruso opera records to get me in the door.”

Panarese said she still loves Chelsea and often recalls the days when Chelsea High School was predominantly Jewish – and Italians like herself could look forward to being the few students at school during Jewish holidays.

"My childhood in Chelsea was very good,” she said. "It was a wonderful place to live, and I still love my street after all these years.”


City of Everett Gathers to Honor Firefighters


City of Everett Gathers to Honor Firefighters

June 12, 2013
The Everett Firefighter Honor Guard march to the Firefighters Memorial Monument.

The Everett Firefighter Honor Guard march to the Firefighters Memorial Monument.

This past Sunday, June 9th, the City of Everett gathered at the Firefighters Memorial Monument on the corner of Elm and Ferry Streets in memorial of firefighters Richard Colarusso, Joseph O’Hearn, and Angelo Giangregorio.  Members of the community, Fire Department Personnel and the EFD Honor Guard paid tribute to both this year’s honorees, as well as all of those firefighters who are no longer with us.

Speakers at the service included Mayor Carlo DeMaria, Matt Laidlaw, Director of Communications for State Senator Sal DiDomenico, State Representative Wayne Matewsky, and Chaplin of the Everett Fire Department Reverend Tom Coots.

The speakers expressed their appreciation and gratitude to both the fallen heroes and those who currently serve and protect the residents of Everett.

"It is important to always remember and acknowledge the sacrifice and dedication firefighters display each and everyday,” states Mayor DeMaria, "I am extremely proud and grateful not only as Mayor, but as a resident of Everett of the men and women whose goal is to always protect our City


Everett High Graduates


Congratulations, Graduates: The Everett High Class of 2013 Has Left Its Mark

June 12, 2013

A high school graduation is a bittersweet time both for the graduates and their family members. Although it is the most joyous and significant event thus far for the grads in their young lives, it also signifies the end of a period during which they have been dependent upon their parents, teachers, community, and friends for guidance and direction.

Graduation marks the official transition from childhood to adulthood. The grads no longer will be referred to as boys and girls, but as young men and women. They have the right to vote, the ability to enter into contracts, and only they, not their parents, will have access to their personal medical, academic, and financial information.

The graduates also can decide whether to join the military, which in these times can  mean putting their life on the line for their country.

But these new-found rights also carry with them the serious duties and responsibilities of adulthood and citizenship. Among the most important is that the grads no longer will be treated as juveniles by the criminal justice system, but will face all of the penalties and punishments attendant to criminal acts if they stray from the straight and narrow. Much has been given and much is expected from our grads, who have been like so many boats sheltered in a harbor, but who now are casting off into an ocean that promises to be both thrilling and challenging with seas that will be both calm and stormy.

For the parents, graduation brings mixed emotions. The pride they feel swelling up in them as they watch their son or daughter approach the podium to receive their diploma is tempered by the knowledge that their lives have changed forever. As they recall how they first brought their child to kindergarten 13 years ago, no doubt every parent will be reminded of the words from  the song from Fiddler on the Roof:

Where is the little girl I carried?

Where is the little boy at play?

I don’t remember getting older,

When did they?

A high school graduation is perhaps the one event in which the entire community celebrates and partakes, even if only from a distance. All of us remember our own high school graduation and the combination of exuberance and trepidation that it brought. Regardless of whether we have a direct link to a graduation ceremony, all of us take pride in the knowledge that another generation of our young people is moving onward and upward.

This is especially true for the Everett High Class of 2013, which fully has utilized the resources made available to them by the community and administrators and staff at Everett High to attain outstanding achievements. Many of our grads will be attending terrific colleges thanks to the education they have received in the Everett school system.

Indeed, we know we join with all of our readers in offering our congratulations to the graduates of the great Class of 2013  and wish them the best in the years ahead. We know they will continue to make their family, friends, and community proud as they attain even greater heights in whatever path of life they choose.


Winthrop Beach Receives High Marks


Winthrop Beach Receives High Marks for Water Quality

June 6, 2013

Memorial Day marked the unofficial start of summer and soon Winthrop residents will flock to area beaches to soak up the sun and take a dip in the ocean.

In a new report by the leading Boston Harbor environmental advocacy group ranked Winthrop Beach in the Top 10 on its water quality report card.

Save the Harbor / Save the Bay released the report on the region’s public beaches from Nahant to Nantasket and Winthrop Beach scored 100% in 2012.

The score was the result of assessed water quality conditions at the beach and the group looked at the percentage of tests exceeding the state swimming standard of 104 cfu/100ml.

The score means Winthrop Beach is one of the cleanest and safest to swim at during the summer months.

"2012 was  a good year for most of the Boston Harbor region’s public  beaches, with more than half earning either an A or an A plus,”  said Director of Strategy, Communications and  Programs at Save the Harbor/Save the Bay Bruce Berman. "It was also a dry year, which explains most of the  changes we saw from 2011. Bacterial pollution is often caused by  storm water discharges that accompany summer showers, squalls  and storms, so less rain means cleaner water.”

The results of Winthrop Beach’s water quality were made public at the initial meeting of Save the Harbor’s Beaches Science Advisory Committee Sunday. The committee was convened to conduct a systematic review of water quality and beach flagging accuracy on the region’s public beaches from Nahant to Nantasket.

Flagging  accuracy improved somewhat in 2012, as a direct result of Department of Conservation and Recreation’s  continuing efforts to develop more accurate models for beach  management on a beach-by-beach basis.

"While  specificity (blue flag accuracy) is fairly high on many beaches,  sensitivity (red flag accuracy) continues to be problematic,  with less than 50% of the red flags posted correctly on some  beaches in 2012.,” said Berman. "This issue needs to be  addressed if we are to protect both the public’s  health and their right to enjoy the benefits of our region’s  pubic investment in clean water and better beaches.”

In 2013,  Save the Harbor will continue to work with the Metropolitan  Beaches Commission (MBC), the DCR, MWRA, EPA, DEP, the  Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) and the Beaches  Science Advisory Committee to develop more accurate models to  better predict when to post or flag a beach.

"At Save  the Harbor/Save the Bay our goal is clean water and not simply  better models or faster and more accurate test results,” said Berman. "We are  working towards the day when there is no need for flags at all.”

You can  download the report card, see the data and learn more about the methodology on which the report card is based at www.savetheharbor.org/beachesreportcard.


Everett approves Budget


Aldermen Protest, then Approve $146 Million City Budget: $14.5 Million for Water/Sewer Funds Also Approved

June 12, 2013

The Board of Aldermen Monday night approved a $146 million city budget for fiscal year 2014, and another $14.5 million in expenditures for the water and sewer enterprise funds. However, the vote to approve the city budget was not without some drama, as the board ended up taking two votes before passing the budget.

On the first vote to approve the budget, only Aldermen Michael Mangan, Joseph McGonagle and Aldermanic President Sal Sachetta voted in favor of the $146, 305,994 city operating budget.

However, the winning side immediately asked for reconsideration, which allowed Aldermen Charles DiPerri and Michael Marchese to switch their votes, pushing the budget through.

Aldermen Robert Van Campen and Rosemary Cardillo voted against the spending package.

Alderman Van Campen, who opened the debate about the city budget, noted that the city had previously held two public hearings on the budget, but that he remains "very concerned about the inequities in the salary adjustments we see in this budget.”

Van Campen also said that some salaried positions in the city budget had received double-digits percentage increase over the previous year’s salary, while other union and contract positions had received 1.5 percent increases or none at all.

As an example of this inequity Van Campen, who has announced his intentions to run against Mayor Carlo DeMaria in the fall, pointed out that the salary line item in the Mayor’s office had seen a 70 percent increase from the previous year. However, that figure includes a new constituent services position for the administration as well.

"I know that the administration says that the budget as a whole is stable, and that the city has seen a six-percent reduction in numbers of positions since 2008. . .but since 2012 we’ve also started adding people back again,” said Van Campen.

The board approved the $14.5 million budget for water and sewer on a unanimous 7-0 vote, with no debate on the matter.


Winthrop High graduates June 7th


WHS Graduation Set for Friday Night

June 6, 2013
Joe Gobiel Class President

Joe Gobiel
Class President

One-hundred-and-twenty-four graduates will receive their diplomas during the Winthrop High School Class of 2013 commencement ceremonies Friday at 6 p.m. at Miller Field. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held indoors at the school gymnasium.

Principal Gail Conlon will welcome the gathering to the ceremonies and present her remarks. Conlon is retiring as principal this year.

"I will say a farewell in my own way,” said Conlon. "It’s been a great run.”

Conlon and Vice Principal Robin Kostegan, who is also retiring, will present the diplomas. There will also be a presentation of scholarships.

Superintendent of Schools John Macero will speak during the program. Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo and Town Council President Peter Gill will congratulate the graduates and join other dignitaries at the ceremonies.

Class Marshals John Dalton and Julia Wallace will lead the Pledge of Allegiance.

Michael Lessard, class valedictorian who will be attending Harvard, and Nicole O’Brien, class salutatorian who will be attending MIT, will deliver speeches.

Class president Joseph Gobiel will deliver his presidential address near the conclusion of the ceremony.


Markey visits East Boston Neighborhood Health Clinic


U.S. Congressman Ed Markey Makes Campaign Stop at EBNHC

June 12, 2013
U.S. Congressman and Massachusetts Senatorial hopeful Ed Markey tours the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center with California Congressman Xavier Bacerra last Friday. Dr. Karin Leschly, medical director for family medicine at the Health Center provided the Congressmen with the tour.

U.S. Congressman and Massachusetts Senatorial hopeful Ed Markey tours the East Boston Neighborhood
Health Center with California Congressman Xavier Bacerra last Friday. Dr. Karin Leschly,
medical director for family medicine at the Health Center provided the Congressmen with the tour.

U.S. Congressman Ed Markey made a campaign stop in East Boston last Friday in his bid to win the Massachusetts Senate seat.

California Congressman Xavier Bacerra joined Markey for a tour of the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center facility in Maverick Square. The facility was built using federal stimulus money and Markey and Bacerra got a first hand look at how the federal dollars were well spent.

Markey, who helped announce the $12 million EBNHC got a few years back to build the Maverick Square facility said he wanted to show Bacerra how proud he and entire community is over the facility.

"For me it’s a great honor show Bacerra this incredible facility in East Boston and how proud I am of it and how proud the staff, physicians and entire community is of it,” said Markey. "Ralph Waldo Emerson said ‘health is the first wealth’ and what we have done here in East Boston and Massachusetts ensures every child has access to health care facilities and there is a pot (funds) to build facilities like this were health care is made available and people can receive quality health care in a dignified setting where the only thing that matters is the health and well being of families.”

Of the EBNHC facility, Markey said it doesn’t make any difference of someone’s income level or nationality the only thing that matters is health care of children and families.

"This has been out business plan because we believe the more educated and healthy our young people are the better future workforce we will have,” said Markey. "East Boston is a perfect example of what’s going on across the country now thanks to Affordable Care Act. You can see what happens when you invest in health care and you can see change that takes place in the relationship families have with health care.”

Markey pointed out that while Republicans voted against the Affordable Care Act he and Bacerra voted in favor because it makes facilities like EBNHC and the quality of health care inside possible.

"It’s an ongoing battle but it is the right thing to do,” said Markey. "You can see the impact a facility like this has on people and families and the community.”

EBNHC President Jack Cradock thanked Markey and said the facility is stimulus money alive and well.

"I tell the Congressman all the time that when someone criticize President Obama and what he did they should come to East Boston and look at out facility and out colleague health centers around the country,” said Cradock.

Latest polls have Markey up by 7 points over Republican challenger Gabriel Gomez.


East Boston' Neighborhood of Affordable housing has milestone anniversary


NOAH Marks 25th Anniversary Milestone

June 12, 2013

East Boston’s Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH) began in the basement of Our Savior’s American Lutheran Church on Paris Street. It started in the basement of this church fighting slumlords in Eastie at a time when there was an influx of Vietnamese and Cambodian immigrants coming into the neighborhood.

At times these families wouldn’t have heat for two years. When buildings burnt down because the families were forced to use space heaters the landlords unfairly blamed the residents and began the rumors that these immigrants cooked on the floors of the apartments or in bathtubs.

"I remember NOAH’s first day. We got a call to assist a Vietnamese family which was being intimidated by an absentee owner over nasty conditions in an Eagle Hill apartment,” said NOAH’s Executive Director Phil Giffee. "The owner was also threatening them with eviction. East Boston has always been a welcoming community (and it should be proud of itself) but that event was a too-common experience in those days. If memory serves, we got the landlord to back off.”

With a goal to help these residents in Eastie because they had no one else to turn to NOAH was born.

"At the time the community needed two things,” explained Giffee. "East Boston needed an active enterprise that helped low income residents and a voice to resolve the housing crisis here.”

Giffee said there were to many absentee landlords taking advantage of the poor and having them live in substandard conditions. NOAH was there to take these immigrants complaints to the attorney general’s office and although it was hard at times it was these fights that helped NOAH emerged as a vital  neighborhood organization.

On June 20 NOAH will celebrate its 25th Anniversary with a summer bash at the Logan Hyatt Hotel. The event will honor Citizens Bank for the bank’s unique contributions and for its support to NOAH for over two decades. The event will be co-chaired by Robert Beal, President of The Beal Companies and Jerry Sargent, President of Citizens Bank and RBS Citizens.

John Jacobs, Chief Creative Optimist and co-founder of Life is Good, will be the evening’s keynote speaker.

While NOAH began as a way to improve housing conditions here it has blossomed into a respected organization that lends its name to community building, social and environmental justice and entrepreneurship for thousands of residents here.

In the early days NOAH ran on inspiration and spirit and today works on partnerships with local and area non-profits as well as community leaders and elected officials.

"And the many, many residents that do not have an official title with NOAH but were the backbone of the organization then and now,” said Giffee.

The misconception that NOAH somehow contributes to the demise of urban neighborhoods because it provides affordable housing has been disproved over the years as NOAH emerged as a stabilizing force in Eastie. Over the years NOAH has helped to drive out slumlords for the community, improved countless dilapidated buildings, improved Eastie’s housing stock and jumped on most environmental projects that added more green space to the neighborhood.

"I couldn’t be happier and I’m eternally grateful that I landed here landed here in East Boston 25 years ago,” said Giffee. "I met so many hardworking passionate dedicated people that have became close friends over the years.”

Giffee said from the beginning NOAH built on the human instinct to help other people move up in the world and year after year that original mission has been reaffirmed.

"Our role has always been to foster the human connection between people and help generations realize its not a South American and European divide in this neighborhood but that the people that come to East Boston now come here for the same reasons our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents did,” said Giffee.

So whether NOAH responds to seniors who need their homes repaired, a young family needing an affordable rental apartment, or yet another family facing a draining foreclosure - or to residents who need an advocate to help fix up a schoolyard, create open space or preserve our precious environment, Giffee said NOAH will continue to answer the call


East Boston to North End connection to be rehabbed


Callahan Tunnel Rehab Project Scheduled

June 12, 2013

MassDOT has scheduled a meeting to discuss the proposed rehabilitation project to the Lieutenant William F. Callahan Tunnel that connects East Boston to the North End.

The meeting will be held on Wednesday, June 26 at 6:30 p.m. at the East Boston High School, 86 White St.

The project includes rehabilitation to the tunnel’s deck, curb line, gutters and replacement of the tunnel’s wall panels.

MassDOT project staff will present details including preliminary work schedule information and expected traffic impacts.

After removing 117 wall panels from the Callahan Tunnel in December 2013 and an additional two-dozen panels from the adjoining Sumner Tunnel last week, MassDOT decided to remove all 2,400 panels from the Callahan.

The removal of the panels came after a 100 lb. wall panel in the tunnel fell off the wall of the tunnel and landed in the road. The panels, which date back to the 1990s, are 9 ft. by 4 ft. and replaced older panels in order to give the tunnel a better look and reflect light for improved visibility in the tunnel for motorists.

After the panel fell, MassDOT was forced to shut down the Callahan so inspectors could perform a ‘pull test’ on the panels that line the tunnel.

After the inspections it was found that 117 panels did not pass the pull test and had to be removed. MassDOT officials said the framing holding the panels in place had corroded.

Inspectors took down every panel that showed some degree of looseness. The rest where firmly secured and MassDOT was confident they would not fall onto the road in the Callahan.

However, a week after performing the pull test in the Callahan, MassDOT inspectors moved over to the Sumner Tunnel where they performed the same testing.

They found that 26 panels needed to come down due to corrosion. MassDOT officials said any panel that moved even slightly was taken down in the Sumner.

Because the Callahan was up for an overhaul beginning this summer, MassDOT decided to take all panels down.

The overhaul of the tunnel will cost between $10 million and $12 million.

The Callahan Tunnel is one of three tunnels that connect East Boston to Boston via routes under the Boston Harbor, the others being the Sumner and Ted Williams Tunnels.  The tunnel was opened in 1961. It was named for the son of Turnpike chairman William F. Callahan, who was killed in Italy just days before the end of World War II.


Will the Casino Come to Revere or will it go to Everett


The Waiting Game: Hurry Up Boston; Rizzo, Others Frustrated with Casino Delay

June 5, 2013

There’s a big donut hanging in the way of Boston and the completion of its long-awaited host community agreement, and despite that donut being across City Lines from Revere, it’s clogging a lot of arteries on both sides of the line.

Mayor Dan Rizzo has been very supportive of the efforts by Boston Mayor Tom Menino – and vice versa – for the duration of the host community negotiation process. In fact, the two mayors have worked so well together that they’ve forged a unique friendship. However, this week Rizzo said he is growing impatient with Boston – and he’s joining a long list of elected officials who have been grumbling privately for months.

"When I see how many people in Revere are in desperate need of a job, and as state aid continues to dry up – we have a net loss of close to $250,000 as compared to last year – it’s beginning to get frustrating to see this process drag on,” he said. "The Legislature had it right in keeping the tax rate at 25 percent because they recognize that businesses – regardless of whether they’re a manufacturer, a service organization, or a casino – still need to make a profit to be viable. It does no one any good to put them out of business before they open their doors by having unrealistic expectations or demands. This is about jobs, it’s about helping our local economy, and it’s about creating collateral investment opportunities. This will not happen if we can’t get to the point where an application can be submitted. If this were any other type of development, it would be hard for me to believe it would take this long to mitigate. Like I said, it’s extremely frustrating.”

And having that application submitted is becoming ever more critical every day that passes without a signed host community agreement.

Revere announced in late March that it had concluded negotiations with Suffolk Downs and was waiting to compare notes with Boston. Both, Rizzo said at the time, would sign their agreements at the same time after doing comparisons. At that time, it was believed Boston’s agreement would be hammered out quickly.

It wasn’t.

And a prepared City of Revere continues to wait.

Now, casino developer Steve Wynn’s proposal in Everett is putting major pressure on Suffolk Downs as the track’s proposal seems to be falling way behind in the backstretch – getting tangled up in Boston mayoral politics and stalemates over mitigation monies.

Everett signed its agreement with Wynn weeks ago and will have a community referendum vote on that package later this month. It is expected to pass overwhelmingly and has garnered support from all corners – including abutters to the project who live on the Rt. 99 corridor.

If host community agreements were completed this week, it would likely trigger a vote in early August. Anything later than the next few weeks would threaten to leak into September – dangerously close to a municipal election in Revere and a gigantic mayoral preliminary election in Boston. Likewise, it’s also dangerously close to the date that Phase II applications will begin to be accepted. Phase II applications will be accepted by the state Gaming Commission from October to January 2014. Most applicants are fighting to have those applications in at the earliest point possible.

One state official, speaking off the record, indicated that the hold up was how much money the track would have to pay Boston. It is said that Boston isn’t interested in compromising on that number and the track cannot reasonably afford what is being demanded.

On Monday, during a state Economic Development tour geared towards the press, Rizzo told State Secretary for Economic Development Greg Bialecki that he was frustrated with Boston and Mayor Menino on this issue.

"People come in to my office all the time asking me for a job at the new casino,” he said. "My pat answer is I tell them to fill out an application, but don’t give it to me, give it to Tom Menino because apparently he has plenty of jobs in Boston and can afford to wait on a casino


Revere Beach develpment for rental apartments


Waterfront Square is Moving to the Development Fast Track

June 5, 2013

A major milestone in the Waterfront Square development on Revere Beach is about to unfold this week, and if developers have their way, the project will soon shift to warp speed.

Covington Realty Partners of St. Louis will appear before the Conservation Commission today, June 5th, to discuss plans for building two apartment buildings with 194 rental units on the North Lot at Wonderland.

It will be the first piece of the private development phase of the project. Up to now, only the public portion of the project has been under construction – including the new parking garage, pedestrian bridge and plaza deck.

Covington is one of the largest national multi-family apartment developers, having been in business since 1981 and having developed more than 16,000 units during their existence. They’re entrance into the East Coast follows a trend of western, Midwestern and southern development companies looking towards stronger rental markets in larger coastal cities like Boston and San Francisco.

Partner David Braswell told the Journal that Covington is preparing to buy the North Lot property development rights from EuroVest’s Joe DiGangi. Once that is done, it’s nothing but full speed ahead.

"By June 30th, we are predicting we’ll have everything we need from the City and I can start my construction documents,” said Braswell. "We would like to have a shovel in the ground by September and units available next April or May, 2014.

"It’s a great opportunity in Revere and Joe DiGangi has done a formidable job getting this done to this point,” he continued. "He’s spent seven years laying the groundwork. We’re acquiring the land from Joe and he has been a formidable asset to us because he knows this so well.”

According to documents filed with the Conservation Commission, Covington has proposed to build a seven-story apartment building and a five-story apartment building on the North Lot. Combined, those buildings will house 194 units of rental apartments. There will be two levels of parking under the seven-story building and one level of parking under the five-story building – amounting to 258 spaces for the buildings.

Most of the environmental and flood zone triggers in the development have been avoided, most likely, due to the fact that the buildings are being situated just outside of the boundaries, according to those same documents.

Braswell said they would commence the five-story building first – which will be located closest to Revere Street – and have it completed and ready for rental by April or May, 2014. They will continue on with building the seven-story building and have it finished by October.

He predicted they would be done with the entire project by December 2014.

DiGangi – who still holds the development rights to the rest of the project – said he is elated that a national company has come on board. He said having a company with the stature of Covington sends the rest of the development world a message about the stability of the market and the project.

"They’re a top rated company and they do about 2,500 or 3,000 units per year,” he said. "When you develop at that level, the entire United States is your territory. They’re a very reputable and old company.

"That I’m bringing in national development companies to develop the project with me is fabulous,” he continued. "Everyone should be applauding this. I’m delighted they’re coming in and it gives the project a national presence.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said it’s a victory for Revere and the entire state.

"I am obviously excited to see the start and first phase of private investment,” he said. "Our entire Economic Development team has worked tirelessly showcasing all parcels that make up Waterfront Square. Now, it appears we’ll be reaping the fruits of their hard work and persistence. Obviously this is not only good news for the city, but also for Congressman Markey, Governor Patrick, Secretary Bialecki, and others who believe in Revere and provided close to $80 million to help create these development opportunities.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he does have concerns about the construction materials in the buildings, and hopes that they are of a high quality.

"I would hope whatever they put down there is made of a high quality material – concrete and steel,” he said. "I’d like to see high-end condos, some shops and quality restaurants. I’d like to see something to bring people in there – people who will support upscale restaurants and upscale shops.”

He did say he was a little put off by the fact that he had heard nothing of the project until this week.

"I feel like the City Council has not been privy to any of the negotiations on developments around here,” he said. "We seem to learn of everything by a late communication.”

Braswell said they learned of the Revere Beach project opportunity through Lou Minicucci Jr. of MINCO Corp. in North Andover. It just so happens that a partner at Covington is a friend of Minicucci’s, and they shared notes and came up on the Beach.

"We feel we are very fortunate to be a part of this project,” said Braswell. "We’re excited about the area and we hope to do more in the Massachusetts area.”

To date, most of the company’s projects have been in Texas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kansas and Oklahoma.

The Revere Beach project will be known as Vanguard at Waterfront Square.

Cutline –

There might be a carnival there now, but the North Lot could be home to new apartments by this time next year. A St. Louis developer is before the Conservation Commission this week and could kick off the Waterfront Square project by September.


Revere's Hill Park to be replaced


Farewell to Hill Park

June 5, 2013

Hill Park on Park Avenue, named in memory of U.S. Sgt. James G. Hill, holds a special place in the hearts and minds of Revere residents.

For the Revere High School softball program, it has been the varsity’s home for decades. So many great friendships began on the softball diamond and continue today. There have been many memorable moments – from the phenomenal pitching performance of former RHS great Jen Wells, who helped the Lady Patriots upset a Bishop Fenwick team and program that would win the next seven Division 1 state championships – to last Thursday’s state tournament game when senior Aliza Anderson had a dramatic walk-off single in the bottom of the eighth to beat Lowell after freshman Ally Hinojosa had tripled to start the inning.

There have been men’s and women’s softball leagues at the park, basketball leagues on the adjacent courts, and tennis – and the park has served as the site of pre-game preparations for our Pop Warner teams before their games at Harry Della Russo Stadium next door. Revere Powder Puff teams have used the park for their practices as well.

But Hill Park is rounding third and heading for home – although there will be one final and fitting tribute called "The Last At Bat – A Farewell to Hill Park,” to be held June 22 at 10:30 a.m. Peter DiGiulio and Lenny Orlandello are running this wonderful event that is expected to attract many old-time and more recent softball players who enjoyed competition on the Hill Park diamond.

Hill Park will make way for a brand new Hill School that will replace the McKinley School. There will be no more softball games played at Hill Park, but the memories of this field and this focal point of Revere athletics and good times will live on for years to come.


Wall that heals comes to Revere on June 13-16th.


Wall That Heals Comes to Revere on June 13-16

June 5, 2013

Revere will be transformed into a poignant Vietnam Memorial over the next week.

The ‘Wall That Heals’ – a travelling Vietnam Veterans Memorial and Museum – will be arriving in Revere to great fanfare on Tuesday, June 11th, and will be stationed for the public to view from June 13-16.

A welcoming processing has been planned on June 11th from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. The Wall will travel through Suffolk Downs and down Winthrop Avenue to Bennington Street.

The Revere Police Motorcycle Division, an Army truck and several other veterans will be the honorary accompaniment on the procession.

The Wall will be set up for the public to view in Frederick’s Park, just adjacent to the Beachmont VFW.

Opening ceremonies will take place at 5 p.m. on June 13th and the wall will be open 24 hours a day through Sunday, June 16th, at 5 p.m.

There will be ceremonies for Flag Day on June 14th, and Father’s Day, June 16th.

An entire committee made up of veterans and other community members has been led by Revere Veterans Agent Nick Bua for the last several months.

Bua indicated that they are excited to host the wall and he expects it to be a very powerful time for those who served in Vietnam, and even for those who did not.

As part of ‘The Wall That Heals’ program, the organization is putting out a call for photos. The organization believes that every name on the wall comes with a story, and they are trying to collect photos for the more than 58,000 names on the wall. Any photos collected will be put on display in the Museum and Education Center that accompanies the Wall across the United States. If anyone has a photo of a friend or loved one who is listed on the Wall, they can bring that photo to the event on any of the days it is in Revere for expert assistance.


Revere Beach amongst the cleanest beaches


Good News for Local Beach Goers

May 29, 2013

The report card that came out Sunday by Save the Harbor/Save the Bay certainly comes as good news for local beach goers. Revere Beach was the cleanest beach in the metro Boston area. And for many residents, the only relief from the summer heat comes at cooling down at this beach.

A little more than two decades ago, relief from the heat at Revere Beach could not be counted on as red flags that prohibited swimming were posted on the shoreline.

Those days are a distant memory.

Due to a massive cleanup in the last 20 years, Boston Harbor went from the most polluted harbor to one of the cleanest in the nation. Of course, the cost of stopping the degradation of our water was billions of dollars and payment can still be seen every month in our water and sewer bills. However, even with all this money being spent, the reality remains of how fragile our environment is since a few of the area beaches like King’s Beach in the Lynn and Nahant area still have pollution issues that result in closing to bathers for days at a time.

Today, Revere Beach is being completely rehabbed.  From the sand replenishment to the new Markey pedestrian bridge, to activities like the Sandcastle competition, these improvements and events make this open space a true oasis for those seeking relief from the summer heat. On Thursday and possibly Friday, there will be record heat and humid temperatures.  We do not know what the water temperature will be, but some will venture a dip.  This report card on the quality at Revere Beach comes at the right time for residents.

Remember to watch out for those nesting areas of the piping plovers. And do not forget a slice at Bianchis or a visit to Kelly’s Roast Beef.


Revere High Soft Ball team wills dramatic game

Dramatic Win in Last-ever Game at Hill Park; Will Play Lexington Away on Saturday
May 31, 2013
After hitting the game-winner, the girls softball team swarmed Aliza Anderson in celebration of their first-round tournament win.

After hitting the game-winner, the girls softball team swarmed Aliza Anderson in celebration of their first-round tournament win.

The Revere High School softball team made its final game at Hill Park a triumphant one, defeating Lowell, 3-2, in eight innings Thursday in a Division 1 North state tournament game.

Senior Aliza Anderson singled with two outs to bring home the winning run. Freshman Ally Hinojosa had a clutch triple to right centerfield and junior Stephanie Gregorio had an infield single down the third base line (Hinojosa wisely stayed at third on the play) to set the stage for Anderson’s winning hit.

Sophomore third baseman Kristina Stella was a defensive standout, turning in several outstanding plays while making strong, accurate throws across the diamond to Hinojosa at first base. Stella ended a Lowell threat by fielding the ball, stepping on third, and then firing a strike to complete an inning-ending double play.

After the game, the RHS Softball team paused for their last photo on the old field, which will be replaced by an elementary school.

After the game, the RHS Softball team paused for their last photo on the old field, which will be replaced by an elementary school.

Freshman Victoria Russo made a superb running catch in left field to deny Lowell an extra basehit. Junior shortstop Logan DiCarlo showed her excellent range by fielding a grounder heading to centerfield and turning it into an out on a fielder’s choice. Junior rightfielder Cassandra DiBella and junior second baseman Noel MacDonald also contributed to Revere’s outstanding overall defensive effort.

Senior Jacqui Noel drew a walk and used her fine speed to steal a base before freshman Juliana Cecere had an RBI single in the first inning. Stella (double) scored Revere’s second run on a passed ball in the third.

Sophomore pitcher Sabrina Palermo was very effective in a complete game performance.

Hill Park, the long-time home field of the Revere High softball program and local youth and adult softball leagues, will be the site of a new elementary school.

Revere will travel to Lexington Saturday for a 7 p.m. state tournament game.


Revere High Camera Club wins $1,000.00 award


Lights, Camera Action at RHS

May 29, 2013

The halls of Revere High School (RHS) have become a movie set.

And more often than not, the culprits behind what has become a filming frenzy at the high school is the new Media Club – which just last week learned it won a statewide award for its submission highlighting the state’s school breakfast program.

Gathering in the Media Center of the new RHS Learning Commons (formerly known as the Library) last Friday, Club members and Sponsor Paul Amato accepted an award from Project Bread and the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

It wasn’t a Grammy, but rather a $1,000 check.

And the subject matter wasn’t a windswept drama, but rather a promotional video produced by the club about school lunch.

All the same, it was a feather in the cap for the club – a club that is only in its first year of existence.

Julie Wayman of Project Bread explained that 39 districts from all over the state had answered the call earlier this year to make a promotional video about the nutritional benefits of school breakfast. Instead of making their own stale production, the organization put it on the students of the state to come up with the most entertaining and creative video to highlight a sometimes dry subject matter – cafeteria food.

The RHS entry ended up taking first place statewide, being produced by Freshmen Lyba Khan, Denis Ortiz Martinez and Dennis Mejia.

"I came up with the idea and directed the film,” said Khan, who has flourished in the new club. "A lot of the students were excited to participate in our film. I thought they would be indifferent, but they wanted to do it and were very supportive.”

By no means, however, is this the first outstanding film effort conceived and produced at RHS. Even before the club came into existence, a movie-making culture had begun to develop with the ‘LipDub’ movie that was filmed two years ago using every member of the student body and faculty. Lip-synched to the song ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ by 1980s rockers Journey, the movie showcased the talents and school building for a visiting team of school district evaluators.

That gave way to a spoof of the 1980s classic ‘The Breakfast Club’ that was meant to highlight the new Freshman Academy for incoming eighth graders – and do so in a much more creative way than a simple "video tour.”

"We were charged with making a video about the new Freshman Academy and some of the students wanted to do something a little more creative than the standard informational video,” said Amato. "We thought about it, and the next thing you know, we were introducing the Academy on video through a very creative spoof of ‘The Breakfast Club.’ We called it ‘The Academy Club,’ and it went over really well.”

That was followed up by a similar video introducing the public and the students to the new Learning Commons. That video was a mock-up of the Mac vs. PC commercials that were popular a few years ago. The concept was the same, but the name was ‘Library vs. Learning Commons.’

"What’s very unique here is it’s not just a few students playing around with video, but they’re actually very good at this,” Amato said. "I’m shocked at some of the talent we have and the stuff that is produced here.”

Literature teacher Mary Ellen Dakin said new educational standards are pushing students and teachers to expand into things like movie making. She said reading and understanding literature, especially, requires a new step.

"Reading is not just reading images on a page,” she said. "I’ve used several movie posters in my classroom and had kids analyze the posters before reading a book or play like ‘Hamlet.’ I think it’s an amazing way back to the text. It’s not easy stuff, but always made the students better consumers of the books. Young people are going to be expected to merge film and writing and reading into one seamless presentation.”

Added Humanities Director Christina Porter, "I think the technology is such a focus in this district that it leads to things like this Club flourishing.”

The Media Club is already hot on another project, producing a promotional video for the school’s summer reading initiative. Next fall, they plan on making another lip-synch video.

And there may even be a few more surprises coming soon.

"We do have a full-length feature in the works for next year,” said Amato. "We’ll see where that goes, but there are some pretty good ideas already.”

The full promotional school breakfast video produced by the RHS Media Club can be seen at www.meals4kids.org.

MediaClub1 –

The Revere High School Media Club is only in its first year, but has a long history already of putting together creative films for the school. That history includes a video from last year promoting the Freshman Academy that operated on a spoof of the 1980s classic, ‘The Breakfast Club.’

MediaClub2 –

Accepting the $1,000 award check last Friday were Principal Lourenco Garcia, Freshman club members Lyba Khan, Denis Ortiz-Martinez, Dennis Mejia and Humanities Director Christina Porter.


Revere High Basekett ball coach replaced

AD Hart Addresses Concerns over RHS Basketball Coach
May 29, 2013

It’s rare that a coaching change at Revere High School (RHS) spills its way into the local political scene, but recently when popular Mail Carrier Rick Hayes was replaced as the head coach of the boy’s basketball team after six years, the controversy moved beyond the walls of the high school.

So much so that it has even been mentioned in political campaigns for City Council and School Committee – despite neither of those offices having any control over the issue.

Recently, Hayes ran a ‘Thank You’ advertisement in the Journal concerning his view of how he was treated before being replaced.

"After two months of being in limbo, (Athletic Director Shaun) Hart informed me that Revere High basketball was going in a different direction and wouldn’t be needing my services as head coach,” read the letter. "When I asked what direction that was, I was not given a definitive answer. My only question is if the boy’s basketball job went out to the (statewide) MIAA, why doesn’t every other coaching position do the same?”

This week, Athletic Director Shaun Hart addressed the many concerns around the coaching change and highlighted the new path for the basketball program that he said was decided upon by more voices than just his own.

Coaching positions in Revere are mandated to be advertised every three years – something that has been in place for a long time. When the high school followed that rule this spring for Hayes’s job, Hart said they were surprised to get 25 applicants for the position, and some were very intriguing.

He said he put together a committee of six local people connected to the high school, and who possessed good basketball knowledge.

That committee is not public, and Hart was not inclined to name them, but he did say they interviewed nine candidates.

Hayes was one of those candidates, but so also was Freshman Coach Adam Rizzo and Middle School basketball coach Chris Miller. There were six candidates from out of the district.

In the end, Hart said the committee unanimously chose to hire Clarzell Pearl, who is currently an assistant boy’s basketball coach at Charlestown High School.

It was not a decision that Hart made alone, he said.

"Of all the people who came in, everyone did well,” said Hart. "Rick is a great guy and he interviewed well. There is no ill will or bad intentions. I just think basketball had run its course. Had the committee been deadlocked at 3-3 and I was the deciding vote, it would be different. However, it was unanimous and technically, I didn’t even need to vote on this. It was a decision made by the committee – made up of local people – that was best for the students and the business of RHS. Everyone out there, though, wants to make it something else.”

Hart went on to say that he won’t defend himself at the expense of Hayes, despite the public criticism going against him.

"I’m not going to put Rick down to bring myself up,” he said. "I don’t need to be the good guy. No matter what I do or say, there will just be people out there who think I did this and that I did it because Rick didn’t win or didn’t do something right. There will be people who think this happened because I’m not a hometown guy and wanted to bring in another guy who also wasn’t a hometown guy. There are people who want to make this a him vs. him thing and that just isn’t the case.”

Hart said he did feel it was unfair to compare the basketball position to other coaching positions, such as football.

"There is that misconception out there,” he said. "People are thinking also it’s one sport vs. another sport. They’re different animals. You can’t treat every sport the same.”

Hart said the committee was very excited to hire Freshman Basketball Coach Adam Rizzo as the new Junior Varsity coach – and Pearl’s greatest asset in getting acclimated to the city and the players.

"We’re super excited to have Adam there,” said Hart. "He had applied for the head coach job and was very excited about getting more experience first at the JV level. He realized the competition level and he knew jumping from the Freshman Team to the Varsity was a big jump. Adam knows every basketball kid in this community and we felt it rather important to bring him on to cement the program.”

Pearl, who is a middle school teacher in Brighton, stuck out to the committee due to his experience as a player and a coach, Hart said. Pearl went to Boston English High School, where he was a two-sport star in football and basketball. He eventually earned a scholarship for both sports at Boston College. However, during his collegiate career, he transferred to Northeastern University, where he was a two-year starter on the basketball team and the quarterback of the football team. He also had a stint in professional football and basketball leagues in Germany.

He coached girl’s basketball at Dorchester High School from 2003 to 2009, and has been the assistant boy’s coach at Charlestown until hired in Revere.

"Clarzell grew up the same way as our kids do,” he said. "He was adamant about getting our kids opportunities to be seen by people. He believes there are so many kids that are out of these small urban schools like Revere that never get an opportunity to be seen by a college coach. He hopes to change that here


Who will be Revere's Biggest Loser?


Who Will Be Revere’s Biggest Loser?

May 22, 2013

R1Lines formed around the Planet Fitness with contestants in hopes that they would be picked for
this season’s Biggest Loser.


Revere city council considering Elderly Housing at Fenno's corner


Councillors in Favor of Elderly Housing at Fenno’s Corner

May 22, 2013

A new project to demolish the old, historic Reardon’s Pub building on Fenno’s Corner and replace it with a five-story elderly housing building was greeted with enthusiasm and relief by city councillors and several area seniors.

"This is a long time coming,” said well-known senior advocate Rose Napolitano. "If you come up and down Broadway you’ll never see any developments for seniors. There are some senior complexes in the outlying areas of the city, but they are far from doctors, drug stores and coffee shops. This is an ideal location and a great spot for it and should have been done a long time ago.”

That being said, the current relief sought before the Council for the project is only a preliminary zoning change so that part of the property can move from a Residential B District to a General Business District. Monday’s discussion was only a public hearing on that matter, and so no vote was taken to change the zoning so as to allow the project to move forward to the permitting stage.

Nevertheless, that didn’t stop everyone from talking about what is to come.

The project is being proposed by The Neighborhood Developers (TND), a non-profit out of Chelsea that has been doing a lot of work in the Shirley Avenue area. TND Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said that the project would entail demolishing the historic (but vacant) pub and building a five-story building with 48 residential apartments deeded strictly for senior housing (55 years and older). Of those 48 units, some 70 percent would be give preference to Revere senior citizens.

Responding to rumors that the complex might eventually turn out to be subsidized family housing, D’Ambrosio refuted any such claims.

"This is not 250 Broadway,” he said, referring to the subsidized housing complex just a stone’s throw from Fenno’s Corner. "I’ve heard that from a number of people. It’s nothing like it. Not the same development or project…This is elderly housing with a preference for Revere elders. That’s the project and we’ll stand on that.”

He said that the financing has been gained from state grants in part that are specifically designated for senior housing, and that goal cannot be amended.

There is also slated to be three commercial business units on the ground floor.

Ward 1 Councillor Richard Penta said it was a no-brainer and a win all around for a corner that has been blighted and vacant for several years now.

Councillor Stephen Reardon – a former owner of Reardon’s – said it was with mixed emotions that he viewed the project, but he was glad it was finally being developed.

"It is bittersweet for me,” he said. "As a former minority owner of the property and one who worked in there for years, my family’s business, it is sad to see it go. I am glad to see it will be used for the elderly and I want to make sure it stays elderly housing.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he supports the plan.

"It’s hard to be against additional senior housing and if you’re familiar with TND and the work they’ve done in Chelsea at the Box District and the Walden House on Shirley Avenue and now here on Broadway – it’s high-quality work,” he said. "It really should not be a hard vote for the Council to make. We’re taking a building that for years has served its purpose, but has been vacant now for the last few years.”


Revere High Girls softball team wins to reach State tourney


Softball Team Wins Three Games to Reach State Tourney

May 22, 2013

The Revere High softball team enjoyed a highly-successful week, winning three of its four contests to qualify for the post- season state tournament for the second year in a row.

"The girls are playing very well in all aspects of the game,” said RHS head coach Joe Ciccarello of his squad, which now stands at 10-7 on the season. "Our goals this season were to make the tourney and to improve on our 10-10 record of last year. We’ve accomplished the first one and now have three games left to achieve the second.’

Sabrina Palermo continued to do an outstanding job for the Lady Patriots in the pitching department. In a 5-1 win over Lynn English last Monday, Sabrina fanned 12 enemy batters. She also picked up a pair of "Ws” in triumphs over Beverly of 15-3 last Wednesday and 5-3 on Sunday in a make-up game.

Hitting stars for Revere in the victories were Julianna Cecere and Christina Stella in the English contest; Stephanie Gregorio in the first Beverly game with two hits and three RBI to earn the game ball; and Stella (3-for-4 with two ribbies) and Jacqui Noel (three hits) in the second Beverly tilt.

The lone setback for the Revere girls was a 6-5 defeat to Waltham on Senior Night in a contest that took a very bizarre twist. After spotting Waltham early leads of 3-0 and 6-2, the Lady Patriots battled back to get within 6-5 in the sixth frame. Revere had runners on base and the heart of their order (3-4-5 hitters) coming up,

However, the umpire then abruptly decided that the game could not go on because of the lack of lights in right field, which had not come on all night because of a malfunction.

"We came out flat to start the game,” said Ciccarello, noting that it was Revere’s second straight game and third in four days. "But we finally got our bats on the ball and had the momentum on our side when the ump decided to end it.”

Cecere and Stella produced the RBIs for the Lady Patriots.

Ciccarello and his crew were set to conclude their regular season this week, starting Monday night at Salem. They play tomorrow (Thursday) at Peabody and host Medford Saturday morning at 10:00.

They then will await word of their seeding and first round opponent in the Division 1 North Sectional of the MIAA tournament which is expected to be announced in the middle of next week.


Proposed Pay Raises Causes Concerns for City Council


Proposed Pay Raises Causes Concerns

May 15, 2013

"Blindsided” was the word most commonly used by City Councillors Monday evening when describing a last-minute communication from Mayor Dan Rizzo that sought to change the City’s salary ordinance so four non-union department heads could gain significant salary increases.

In fact, when the matter was brought up at the end of the meeting, councillors were nearly speechless and weren’t sure how to even handle the request.

Many reported they had only seen the communication five minutes prior to it being brought up.

"I was surprised,” said Council President Ira Novoselsky. "I couldn’t even immediately remember our procedures I was so shocked, and I put it in committee instead of calling for a public hearing. They [the employees] were all sitting there and I’m not sure if they expected us to pass it right there. We ended up having to just go to a public hearing. A lot of the councillors were surprised.”

The ordinance change calls for four non-union department heads to get salary increases by ordinance – effectively changing the City’s salary ordinance for the Superintendent of Public Works, the City Director of Finance, the City Clerk and the City Solicitor. The ordinance was prompted by a union contract negotiation with City Hall employees. The four department heads listed above, though, are statutorily barred from belonging to a municipal union.

While the ordinance calls for an expansion of the duties of the Director of Finance – making that position in charge of things such as Worker’s Compensation and performance-based budgeting – most every other job gets the salary increase without an increase in duties.

The salary increases are as follows:

•City Clerk Ashley Melnik, $98,427 (made $85,508 in 2012)

•DPW Superintendent Don Goodwin, $99,990 (2012 = $95,466)

•Director of Finance George Anzuoni, $150,000 (2012 = $130,410)

•City Solicitor Paul Capizzi, $82,468 (2012 = $80,021)

If the measure were approved, the pay raises would be retroactive to July 1, 2012, and the employees would get the same contractual pay increases going forward that were negotiated by the City Hall bargaining units. Those increases were 2 percent each year through 2014.

Mayor Rizzo said the request came due to a salary study done for those four non-union employees while in the course of negotiating with the City Hall unions.

He said all four appeared to be below that of their peers in surrounding cities. However, he did not immediately produce that study for councillors or the public.

"We conducted our own salary study for people not part of collective bargaining,” said the mayor. "There were some people not completely in line with surrounding cities and towns, particularly with our workload…I’ve been here 18 months and I’ve seen the workload the four people in question have had to handle in very, very difficult circumstances. I’m only asking the City Council to bring them up to parity with our sister cities of similar size.”

Councillors, however, were not immediately interested in such justice.

Councillor John Correggio said he couldn’t support the matter, as he had some concerns about giving out such an increase to at least one of the employees.

Councillor John Powers said it was an awkward time to ask for an ordinance change to increase salaries.

Councillor Bob Haas was beside himself, saying it was unprecedented to lay such a request at the last minute on the laps of city councillors.

Novoselsky said the matter will be brought to a public hearing rather quickly due to scheduling conflicts – with that hearing taking place next Monday on May 20th.

The matter will be discussed in the Council Ways and Means Committee on June 6th, and will likely come up for a vote on June 10th.

"There are some who have said that maybe we can phase it in over time,” said Novoselsky. "We just saw it five minutes before. This is an ordinance that will also set precedence for people coming in after the current employees.”

Ways and Means Chair Brian Arrigo said he was surprised by the move, and he hopes the salary study will back up the request.

"It was a little surprising, but it was good to hear from the mayor that they had something to back up why they were making the request,” he said. "I look forward to talking about that. It was a little surprising they didn’t do it in the budget. It will be interesting to see where the money is coming from to pay for this and what the comparisons are that they used.”

Arrigo said he might like to explore an amendment to the measure, perhaps tying the salary increases to the cost of living index.

"Rather than come back every 10 years to amend the salary amounts with a large pay raise, it might be better to tie it to the Consumer Price Index so there is a smaller increase every few years rather than a big jump every 10 years,” he said


Revere Candidates pullnomination papers


Candidates Pull Nomination Papers

May 15, 2013

As people began to pull papers this week for the City Election season, two seasoned challengers have emerged in the Councillor-at-large race, and a Ward 5 primary election looks to be all but certain.

Nomination papers became available at City Hall last Wednesday, May 8th, for the offices of Ward Councillor (six seats), Councillor-at-large (five seats) and School Committee (five seats), and already some interesting races are emerging. Nomination papers are due in July, and candidates will only appear on the ballot if they return those papers to the Election Department with the proper amount of qualifying signatures.

For councillor-at-large, challengers George Rotondo and Steven Morabito appear to have jumped into a race full of political veterans, and so far, and devoid of any new faces on the scene.

Rotondo is a former councillor-at-large who ran for mayor two years ago and was defeated. Prior to being an at-large councillor, he held the Ward 4 seat for several years.

He is now a resident of Hawes Street.

Also in the race is Morabito, who was actually elected two years ago, but had his seat stripped away after a recount.

Naturally, all incumbents in the at-large race are expected to take out papers. Already, Councillors John Correggio, Jessica Giannino, Bob Haas, and Tony Zambuto have taken out their papers.

Correggio has already turned in his papers in proper order and is certified for the ballot.

At-large Councillor Brian Arrigo is expected to take out papers very soon.

Meanwhile, in that same race, one development that is noteworthy among the know-it-alls was the observation that Ward 4 Councillor Stephen Reardon did not take out papers for at-large, but stayed at home in Ward 4.

With two successful terms under his belt, and an important chairmanship of the Zoning Committee, many expected Reardon might try to step up – as he has been talked about as a potential candidate for mayor against Mayor Dan Rizzo in 2015.

The other development is that three candidates have taken out papers in Ward 5, which means that if all turn in their papers and make the ballot, there will be a primary in the ward for the first time in more than a decade.

Taking out papers this week were incumbent John Powers and challengers Al Terminiello Jr. and Billy Bell.

In the School Committee race, there looks to be several new faces challenging for a seat.

All incumbents are expected to seek re-election, but so far only Donna Wood Pruitt has pulled papers.

Newcomers Susan Gravellese and Juan Jaramillo have also pulled papers.

Kilburn Street resident Patrick Keefe, also a newcomer to the scene, is expected to take out papers shortly.

It will leave a crowded field of good candidates for the five seats, and there is also an expectation that there could be a surprise candidate coming along later.

In Ward 1, Councillor Richard Penta has taken out papers, and challenger Gregg LaCedra – who is active in the City’s Republican Committee – will challenge Penta once more.

In Ward 2, Council President Ira Novoselsky took out papers. In Ward 3 Councillor Arthur Guinasso took out papers and Ward 6 Councillor Charlie Patch is expected to pull papers very soon.


Maureen Celata from Celata Real Estate Quoted Boston Globe Magazine

Maureen Celata from M.Celata Real Estate has been quoted in the Boston Globe Sunday Magazine section about the increase in sales in Revere. Time to make a decision to get off the fence about buying or not was also a topic because the interest rates are at an all time low. 
The inventories are low too and if you can find a home without getting into a bidding war, you will be fortunate and should jump at the chance.


Revere Housing Marking Heating up Again


Revere Market Heating Up Again

May 9, 2013

The perception of Revere being a city on the move has provided a great new branding for the City, but now some believe that the local real estate market is providing some positive new numbers to back up that new brand.

Real Estate professionals in the City are reporting that the market is very different and difficult to predict, but really on the upswing for those who are selling their homes. That comes after years of double-digit declines in housing prices and a market that had a glut of bank-owned and foreclosed properties that only moved through short sales. At one time, Revere had become the poster child for everything that was wrong with the once-booming Greater Boston housing market.

Now, though, there are nearly no rental units on the market, and any that are on the market are very high priced.

Agents are seeing people from other areas of the state making buy offers on Beach properties and properties in the neighborhoods.

Short sales are on the decline, and the small inventory of properties for sale is moving quickly and at good prices.

Even the Boston Globe – which has historically loved to pound Revere’s image – recently named the City as one of 13 hot and up-and-coming communities in the state.

"Right now we have no inventories on the rental side and very small inventories on the for sale side,” said Realtor Maureen Celata of M. Celata Real Estate. "It’s really a nutty market…We definitely aren’t doing as many short sales, which is positive. In 2007 and 2008 probably 80 percent of our business was short sales because a lot of people just couldn’t break out even. To get out from under homes that were worth less than what was owed, they had to do short sales. Now, we’re only doing about 15 percent of our business on short sales. That’s a marked improvement…I see that there are a lot of ethnic groups moving in. The face of Revere – like all other cities and towns – is changing. There are just a lot more people out there who are buying.”

Laura D’Amico of Century 21 D’Amico on Pleasant Street said it was about time that Revere got its due.

"Our housing market is really very, very attractive right now,” she said. "We’re seeing multiple offers on all properties – both single-families and multi-families. I just had an open house for a property on Winthrop Parkway last weekend and got an offer before the open house. We’re looking at that potentially being sold in one day and for a price in the high $500,000s. We’re really seeing a lot of fabulous activity and I’m extremely excited.”

She said that Revere’s market has become popular to all types of people in all stages of life – whether immigrants with young families or empty nesters who grew up in Revere and moved away.

"I think people are finally realizing Revere is a very, very wonderful place to live in,” she said. "With the high test scores in the schools, the beauty of the Beach and the new economic development coming along, there is a desire to come here. There are young families, older people who are moving back to the community after moving away to raise children in the suburbs – they all want to locate in Revere. I’ve even got people relocating here from western Massachusetts.”

One of the big reasons that the City is on the rebound is the positive message that has been trumpeted to those outside the city by the new administration. Specifically, events such as last year’s Economic Development Summit have drawn bigger developers to the area, which in turn drives individual interest in local real estate as the perception of Revere as a "diamond in the rough” gains momentum.

Such perceptions were validated by the recent Globe article, which reported that the median price of a single-family home in Revere has increased by 9.6 percent since 2011. Even better than that was the fact that condos in Revere have increase by 19 percent since 2011.

"The positive story in the Boston Globe validates my belief that Revere truly is a city on the rise and will soon become one of the North Shore’s most desirable places to live and work in,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo. "With all we have to offer, proximity to downtown Boston and Logan Airport, our 2 1/2 miles crescent shaped beach, and aggressive reinvestment into our aging infrastructure, Revere is and continues to be a city on the move.”

Revere Economic Development Director Joe Festa said the City’s efforts to invest on Broadway and to spread the message to out-of-town developers about specific properties "ripe for development” has generated a lot of talk about Revere. That has created the idea that Revere will be the next sleeping giant to awaken in the Greater Boston real estate market.

"I think it’s a combination of things happening,” said Festa. "We’re prepared to spend $2 million to revitalize the infrastructure on Broadway and there are a lot of developers who are looking to change Revere Beach…Between Broadway, the gaming facility that might be coming, the Revere Beach development and now a positive real estate market, I really believe Revere is on the radar screen for development. We’re very clear with developers when the come in and we make sure they have a good experience. In the next 10 years, Revere is going to change in such a positive way that there will be a major transition.”

So far, the City’s investment and positive image campaign has resulted in some modest gains in the local housing market – so that what was a dismal investors-only market has turned into a true sellers market.

"I just don’t want to see things get over inflated like years ago,” said Celata. "My only message right now is for people sitting on the fence about selling their home. Now is a good time to sell because interest rates for mortgages are way down and we don’t know how long that’s going to last. If someone is sitting on the fence, now’s the time to jump off.”


Revere Market heating up again.


Revere Market Heating Up Again

May 9, 2013

The perception of Revere being a city on the move has provided a great new branding for the City, but now some believe that the local real estate market is providing some positive new numbers to back up that new brand.

Real Estate professionals in the City are reporting that the market is very different and difficult to predict, but really on the upswing for those who are selling their homes. That comes after years of double-digit declines in housing prices and a market that had a glut of bank-owned and foreclosed properties that only moved through short sales. At one time, Revere had become the poster child for everything that was wrong with the once-booming Greater Boston housing market.

Now, though, there are nearly no rental units on the market, and any that are on the market are very high priced.

Agents are seeing people from other areas of the state making buy offers on Beach properties and properties in the neighborhoods.

Short sales are on the decline, and the small inventory of properties for sale is moving quickly and at good prices.

Even the Boston Globe – which has historically loved to pound Revere’s image – recently named the City as one of 13 hot and up-and-coming communities in the state.

"Right now we have no inventories on the rental side and very small inventories on the for sale side,” said Realtor Maureen Celata of M. Celata Real Estate. "It’s really a nutty market…We definitely aren’t doing as many short sales, which is positive. In 2007 and 2008 probably 80 percent of our business was short sales because a lot of people just couldn’t break out even. To get out from under homes that were worth less than what was owed, they had to do short sales. Now, we’re only doing about 15 percent of our business on short sales. That’s a marked improvement…I see that there are a lot of ethnic groups moving in. The face of Revere – like all other cities and towns – is changing. There are just a lot more people out there who are buying.”

Laura D’Amico of Century 21 D’Amico on Pleasant Street said it was about time that Revere got its due.

"Our housing market is really very, very attractive right now,” she said. "We’re seeing multiple offers on all properties – both single-families and multi-families. I just had an open house for a property on Winthrop Parkway last weekend and got an offer before the open house. We’re looking at that potentially being sold in one day and for a price in the high $500,000s. We’re really seeing a lot of fabulous activity and I’m extremely excited.”

She said that Revere’s market has become popular to all types of people in all stages of life – whether immigrants with young families or empty nesters who grew up in Revere and moved away.

"I think people are finally realizing Revere is a very, very wonderful place to live in,” she said. "With the high test scores in the schools, the beauty of the Beach and the new economic development coming along, there is a desire to come here. There are young families, older people who are moving back to the community after moving away to raise children in the suburbs – they all want to locate in Revere. I’ve even got people relocating here from western Massachusetts.”

One of the big reasons that the City is on the rebound is the positive message that has been trumpeted to those outside the city by the new administration. Specifically, events such as last year’s Economic Development Summit have drawn bigger developers to the area, which in turn drives individual interest in local real estate as the perception of Revere as a "diamond in the rough” gains momentum.

Such perceptions were validated by the recent Globe article, which reported that the median price of a single-family home in Revere has increased by 9.6 percent since 2011. Even better than that was the fact that condos in Revere have increase by 19 percent since 2011.

"The positive story in the Boston Globe validates my belief that Revere truly is a city on the rise and will soon become one of the North Shore’s most desirable places to live and work in,” said Mayor Dan Rizzo. "With all we have to offer, proximity to downtown Boston and Logan Airport, our 2 1/2 miles crescent shaped beach, and aggressive reinvestment into our aging infrastructure, Revere is and continues to be a city on the move.”

Revere Economic Development Director Joe Festa said the City’s efforts to invest on Broadway and to spread the message to out-of-town developers about specific properties "ripe for development” has generated a lot of talk about Revere. That has created the idea that Revere will be the next sleeping giant to awaken in the Greater Boston real estate market.

"I think it’s a combination of things happening,” said Festa. "We’re prepared to spend $2 million to revitalize the infrastructure on Broadway and there are a lot of developers who are looking to change Revere Beach…Between Broadway, the gaming facility that might be coming, the Revere Beach development and now a positive real estate market, I really believe Revere is on the radar screen for development. We’re very clear with developers when the come in and we make sure they have a good experience. In the next 10 years, Revere is going to change in such a positive way that there will be a major transition.”

So far, the City’s investment and positive image campaign has resulted in some modest gains in the local housing market – so that what was a dismal investors-only market has turned into a true sellers market.

"I just don’t want to see things get over inflated like years ago,” said Celata. "My only message right now is for people sitting on the fence about selling their home. Now is a good time to sell because interest rates for mortgages are way down and we don’t know how long that’s going to last. If someone is sitting on the fence, now’s the time to jump off.”


Rever Shines


Revere Shines

May 1, 2013

We would like to thank the hundreds of volunteers who took time on Saturday to participate in the third annual " Revere Shines” neighborhood cleanup.

The weather was perfect, which led to more people helping out this year.

Coming from every ward in the City, volunteer residents spent most of the morning cleaning parks, public facilities, and the other areas around the neighborhoods that needed a little spring-cleaning.

This year’s event was made possible with the help of Revere’s community groups and organizations spearheaded by our city leaders who led by example with their sleeves rolled up.

Mayor Dan Rizzo invited all volunteers to enjoy a fantastic post clean-up barbecue at the American Legion front lawn where a great time was had by all

It was a superb job.


Revere: New hotel planned at Wonderland


New Hotel Planned at Wonderland

April 25, 2013

A development team has proposed putting a 12-story, 200-room hotel – dubbed preliminarily as the Ballroom Hotel – on the current site of the Wonderland Ballroom.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the proposal is in the very early stages, and the development team is still not being identified publicly.

Other sources indicated that the team was based out of Newton.

"It’s in the early stages right now, but they’re making a lot of progress,” said D’Ambrosio. "The potential is for a 12-story structure just a little under 200 rooms with an attached garage. The attached garage is about seven floors. It’s definitely early on and the renditions speak to the potential of the site…They’re putting their money where their mouth is. They’re spending a lot of money to do the plans and to bring this all to fruition. If a casino comes in, that makes it all the better.

"It really is the perfect location,” he continued. "It’s on the ocean. It’s right on a highway. There’s a T stop. Hopefully it will also service a local casino. There’s a lot of promise here.”

The current ballroom, in the plan, would be demolished.

D’Ambrosio said the City has been excellent to work with so far – especially given that the site falls within the Wonderland Transit Oriented Development zone, qualifying it for expedited zoning and permitting.

"It’s been great working with the Mayor’s Office,” he said. "Developers really love to hear that the community and the Mayor’s Office is willing to work with them. It’s always good when the community realizes where development potential is and is willing to accommodate it.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he had been apprised of the proposal and supports it 100 percent.

"I’ve always been supportive of hotels,” he said. "The traffic is intermittent. We don’t pick up their trash. They don’t have kids that will go to the schools. They provide construction jobs and, after construction, permanent jobs for local residents. Hotels are a win-win for the City. I’m 100 percent for it.”

Right now, D’Ambrosio said they are working with the MBTA to secure easements, as access to the hotel would require travelling over T property.

"The Wonderland Ballroom goes from lot line to lot line and some egresses involve going over T property,” he said. " We’re in discussion on that now.”

He said they are now working on the architecture, engineering, traffic studies and parking requirements.

As for a new ballroom, he said it’s still too early to tell.

"I guess that’s still up in the air,” he said. "It really comes down to the final determinations and we’re not there yet.”


North Metro Swat Team (Revere Men Included)


Good Job Chief Cafarelli and North Metro SWAT Team

April 25, 2013

Ordinary people often look at the various sections of the municipal budget and just shake their heads in disbelief at the amount of money being spent by departments.

We are sure that these same people question the Revere Police Department budget.

Since 9/11, security needs of any community and the ways that we must now deal with the increasing threat from terrorists have changed dramatically. And so have the costs.

A case in point is the Marathon Bombing.

Like most people in the Commonwealth, we were mesmerized by the coverage of the bombing by the media and never more so then on Thursday night and Friday as the quickly unfolding and changing scenarios occurred on almost hourly basis.

At 6:00 p.m. on Friday, when the Governor lifted the stay at home order and the fugitive was still at large, we braced ourselves for possibly more explosions and deaths in the coming days.

We then turned off the TV and went downstairs to get some dinner.

Turning on the radio at about 6:45 p.m. we heard about a suspect on Franklin Street in Watertown, just outside of the search perimeter.

We immediately raced upstairs and turned on the television.

For the next hour and half, we were fixated as the drama with gunfire and reports came across the television screen.

Finally, the moment we had hoped for came at 8:30 p.m. with the word across the face of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev — CAPTURED.

We rejoiced with our family, knowing that for the time being we as a community were safe.

What we did not know is that our own Police Chief Joe Cafarelli and his North Metro SWAT team were responsible for the capture of the suspect alive on that Friday night.

The days since the capture have become a chance to end our surreal exposure into the modern world of terrorism that kills and maims innocent civilians, including children.

Unfortunately, we know that terrorism will again surface in our country’s borders whether by foreign nationals or our own citizens.

We know that more women and children will be killed and maimed.

We know that this is the world that our children will inherit.

We know that for a vast majority of plots, the terrorists will be stopped before they can carry out the deadly plans by our security forces. But we also know that the terrorists will succeed in just a few of their deadly bombings and this small percentage is still not acceptable as a member of the human race.

As a taxpayer, we have a new appreciation of what the local police go through and the professionalism that they display with their actions on a daily basis.

As someone who was held hostage by the events of last week, we are grateful for a well prepared and committed police force.

As a resident of Revere, we are more secure in this increasingly insecure world knowing that our police force has the right stuff to combat the unthinkable actions of today’s criminal.

We join others in congratulating Chief Cafarelli and his SWAT team members for a job well done.


New Hotel planned for Wonderland

New Hotel Planned at Wonderland
April 25, 2013

A development team has proposed putting a 12-story, 200-room hotel – dubbed preliminarily as the Ballroom Hotel – on the current site of the Wonderland Ballroom.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the proposal is in the very early stages, and the development team is still not being identified publicly.

Other sources indicated that the team was based out of Newton.

"It’s in the early stages right now, but they’re making a lot of progress,” said D’Ambrosio. "The potential is for a 12-story structure just a little under 200 rooms with an attached garage. The attached garage is about seven floors. It’s definitely early on and the renditions speak to the potential of the site…They’re putting their money where their mouth is. They’re spending a lot of money to do the plans and to bring this all to fruition. If a casino comes in, that makes it all the better.

"It really is the perfect location,” he continued. "It’s on the ocean. It’s right on a highway. There’s a T stop. Hopefully it will also service a local casino. There’s a lot of promise here.”

The current ballroom, in the plan, would be demolished.

D’Ambrosio said the City has been excellent to work with so far – especially given that the site falls within the Wonderland Transit Oriented Development zone, qualifying it for expedited zoning and permitting.

"It’s been great working with the Mayor’s Office,” he said. "Developers really love to hear that the community and the Mayor’s Office is willing to work with them. It’s always good when the community realizes where development potential is and is willing to accommodate it.”

Ward 5 Councillor John Powers said he had been apprised of the proposal and supports it 100 percent.

"I’ve always been supportive of hotels,” he said. "The traffic is intermittent. We don’t pick up their trash. They don’t have kids that will go to the schools. They provide construction jobs and, after construction, permanent jobs for local residents. Hotels are a win-win for the City. I’m 100 percent for it.”

Right now, D’Ambrosio said they are working with the MBTA to secure easements, as access to the hotel would require travelling over T property.

"The Wonderland Ballroom goes from lot line to lot line and some egresses involve going over T property,” he said. " We’re in discussion on that now.”

He said they are now working on the architecture, engineering, traffic studies and parking requirements.

As for a new ballroom, he said it’s still too early to tell.

"I guess that’s still up in the air,” he said. "It really comes down to the final determinations and we’re not there yet.”


Revere and Suffolk Downs and what it may mean to the citizens!!!


Opportunities Abound at Suffolk Casino

April 17, 2013

When Kerry Abrams of Kinship Florist on Revere Street sees the plans for a casino at Suffolk Downs, she sees the potential blossoms of an opportunity.

At an small business forum last Thursday sponsored by Suffolk Downs, Abrams said she is currently a vendor for Suffolk Downs, providing flowers for the track, and figures that a casino could bring her a great deal of additional business.

"For business opportunities in general, for a small business like myself, it’s the opportunity to generate and create a steady flow of business that otherwise wouldn’t be around,” she said. "I know that Suffolk is certainly committed to local vendors. They’ve already shown me that. I really want to learn more about what opportunities there might be in their plan.”

She said she could envision her business expanding to meet the needs of the casino for guest flowers, lobby flower arrangements and decorative flowers for the restaurants.

At the forum, Caesar’s Entertainment Executive John Payne said that while developing the Harrah’s Casino in New Orleans a decade ago, Caesar’s wanted customers to have a New Orleans experience and not just a Caesar’s experience.

Payne and Suffolk Downs COO Chip Tuttle said last week at the forum – held in Eastie’s Courtyard Marriott – that they want to bring the same concept to a casino here.

"We talk about New Orleans because it’s one of the few urban casinos we have,” said Payne. "When we were developing our strategy there in 2000 we realized consumers could play slots and tables anywhere but we weren’t making it memorable unless they can touch and feel other local amenities outside our walls. So we built partnerships there through reward points and its what we want to do here at Suffolk Downs.”

The forum featured local representatives from the Revere and East Boston Chambers of Commerce and it kicked off Suffolk Downs and Caesar’s Entertainment’s business inclusion program and outreach campaign. The plan includes opportunities for local businesses to become on-site vendors, to supply goods, products and services to a Suffolk Downs resort, partner with the resort through Caesars’ Total Rewards customer appreciation program and provide businesses access to the increased number of employed residents in the local community.

"We have to set the standard for gaming by including the local businesses community through partnerships,” said Tuttle. "What we are announcing today are different ways of including local businesses and how we plan to reach out and educate local businesses about these partnerships.”

In New Orleans, Payne said Caesars has spent more than $45 million at 30 different restaurants that entered into a rewards program with the hotel and casino there.

"I’m quite passionate about how we run our casinos differently than other casinos,” said Payne. "Partnerships are so important in urban casinos and if you look at the development of the industry outside of Las Vegas you see that what is happening in urban casinos is an outward facing development and how local amenities can compliment what is going on inside the resort.”

The key to this, Payne explained, is forming partnerships with surrounding businesses so both the community as a whole benefits from more economic stimulation while guests of the casino and resort benefit from not just a casino experience, but a city experience.

"In New Orleans, and in Boston if we are lucky enough to receive a license, is the anchor that already exists and already has great restaurants, great hotels and great museums—these are the draw and the reasons why people go to places like New Orleans or come here to Boston,” said Payne. "What we do is form partnerships with local hotels, local restaurants, local museums so customers don’t only spend time at the resort or casino but out in the city exploring.”

Payne and Tuttle argue that local businesses will benefit from Caesars Total Rewards program, which will allow over 45 million members to earn and redeem rewards credit at participating local businesses. Local restaurants will also be invited to partner with the resort as an on-site restaurant, among other opportunities.

"Through the program people will learn about where they have to eat, what music venue they need to attend or what museum they should see in East Boston or Boston to make that experience of being here at a resort at Suffolk Downs better,” said Tuttle.

In addition to the business partnerships, Tuttle and Payne announced that Caesars and Suffolk Downs will be hosting vendor forums to detail the opportunities for local businesses.

"As part of the local business community for 78 years, a primary objective of our development proposal is to invest in the local community and to extend the development beyond the property itself to create jobs and stimulate the local economy,” said Tuttle. "A development of the scale we are proposing will spend approximately $150 million annually on goods and services. Local and regional businesses will be the primary beneficiaries of this spending.”

The first in a series of forums, targeting East Boston, Revere, Chelsea and Winthrop-based businesses, will be held at Suffolk Downs on Wednesday, June 5. Additional forums will be held in the communities around Suffolk Downs.

The forums will provide area businesses with information and guidance regarding their interest in becoming suppliers to the resort and partners in the Total Rewards program. They will include workshops with representatives from Caesars’ sourcing and purchasing staff as well as business partners from other properties in the Caesars network


Revere High School Sophomore Erroneously fingeres as Marathon Bomber!


RHS Sophomore Erroneously Fingered as Marathon Bomber by National Media

April 19, 2013

Locally, the news media has been pretty friendly to Beachmont’s Salaheddin Barhoum.
His track and field results are dutifully reported just about every week in this paper, as he seems to do better in the two-mile run every week that goes by.
However, when it comes to the national and international media, they haven’t done so good by the 17-year-old Moroccan immigrant.
Very early Thursday morning, Barhoum and his family were shocked to see the front page of the New York Post, which showed Barhoum and a friend in the crowd at Monday’s tragic running of the Boston Marathon. The problem was that the front-page headline blared ‘Bag Men: Feds Seek These Two Pictured at Boston Marathon.’
Talk about having a target on your back.
Clear as day, Barhoum was pictured standing and watching the Marathon with a headline fingering him as the Marathon Bomber – all this in an international publication from New York City.
The front-page newspaper faux pas followed a report on CNN the night before that basically outed Barhoum as the bomber – with a reporter describing him from the same picture, a picture that had already been circulating on the Internet for two days.
Before he knew it, Internet sleuths had searched the young Revere man out and he had hundreds of threats and violent rants on his Facebook page.
He was scared.
He was confused.
He was angry.
"This is real. I did not do this. I am going straight to the courts now to tell them I didn’t have anything to do with this,” he wrote on his Facebook page Thursday before shutting it down.
Revere Police and the Revere Public Schools got involved immediately after Barhoum reached out to them via his track coach.
Superintendent Paul Dakin said it was hard to figure out what to do in such a situation.
The young man’s life was in danger, as angry onlookers and members of the media began showing up at the family’s Beachmont home, and officials had no idea if someone might try to enact vigilante justice upon the innocent RHS student.
"He was scared and his family was scared,” said Dakin. "They reached out to us for advice, but it was hard to know exactly what to do in that kind of situation. We thought about putting some police cars near the home to protect him, but we also thought that bringing in police cars to the scene might make people think he was actually guilty. It’s hard to know exactly what the right response would be.”
Around Revere, Barhoum’s friends from around the City and his teachers were floored to see him at the forefront of national media reports. Virtually no one believed it to be true.
By the end of the day, most media reports began to trickle out indicating that Barhoum and his friend had been wrongly identified by the Post and CNN.
Barhoum reached out to several media outlets, both local and national, to try and figure out how to clear his name.
Eventually, he spoke to ABC News to tell the story of how he was just a simple Revere High School student who works at Subway and runs the two-mile race and had an interest in watching the Marathon.
"This is terrible what they did to him,” said one teacher who chose to remain anonymous. "This could have had some really bad repercussions. We have to remember he is just a kid, a sophomore in high school, and he had the weight of the world bearing down on him for most of the day. It’s despicable.”
By 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, once FBI investigators released official photos and videos of the newest ‘persons of interest,’ Barhoum and his friend and their terrible Thursday had been all but forgotten.
The Post has since backtracked on its story.


Search at local Revere apartment complex for Bomber

Could End Up Being Nothing
April 17, 2013
The apartment building at 364 Ocean Ave. was rather quiet on Monday morning aside from a Revere Police cruiser stationed along the street. However, Monday night the building was at the center of a major raid by all levels of law enforcement.

The apartment building at 364 Ocean Ave. was rather quiet on Monday morning aside from a Revere Police cruiser stationed along the street. However, Monday night the building was at the center of a major raid by all levels of law enforcement.

The feelings of what had happened at the Boston Marathon on Monday had not yet begun to sink in before the full force of the investigation visited Revere Monday night and into Tuesday morning.

Around 8 p.m. on Monday night, a full cadre of federal investigators descended upon 364 Ocean Ave. to pursue a piece of the investigation into the Boston Marathon bombing.

Apparently, a young Saudi Arabian man who was at the bomb scene had been tackled by a witness to the bombing. That witness turned the man – a Saudi national about 22-years-old – over to Boston Police and indicated the man had been acting suspiciously before the bomb went off. There was no definite proof the man had any connection to the bombing, though.

Later, it was reported nationally that the same Saudi national was being questioned and was a ‘person of interest.’ Several sources were strongly indicating on Tuesday the Saudi man tackled at the bomb scene was the same Saudi man who lived at 364 Ocean Ave.

That is apparently what led investigators to the apartment – though the Saudi man was said to have been cleared by authorities late on Tuesday.

Getting cleared by the feds didn’t come, though, until after an extensive investigation at the Revere Beach high-rise.

During the raid, scores of police vehicles from the feds to the State Police to the Boston Police and to Revere Police and Revere Fire clogged the circular driveway for several hours as the work in the building unfolded, which included the use of all sorts of technical equipment – including X-ray machines – alongside bomb-sniffing dogs.

Revere Police Lt. Amy O’Hara confirmed on Tuesday that they were on standby and assisted several federal agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), in looking into a part of the ongoing Marathon investigation.

Fire Chief Gene Doherty said they were called to the scene around 8:54 p.m. by the State Police Bomb Unit for an operational standby. He said that is a procedure used when the Bomb Unit is checking out a package or something similar and wants the Fire Department to be on scene in case something goes wrong.

The investigation centered on the fifth floor of the building at 364 Ocean Ave.

Reports indicated that those on the scene were State Police, FBI, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agents, Boston Police, bomb technicians, and State Police detectives.

Agencies employed an x-ray machine to scan for any suspicious materials in one particular apartment on the fifth floor. Apparently, there was something that caught their eye, and the entire 4th, 5th and 6th floors of the building were evacuated.

Doherty said they were told to station firefighters on the fifth floor near the fire standpipe system and with fire extinguishers. Paramedics were also told to be there as well.

After some time, nothing had happened and the tense situation seemed to slow down a bit. Doherty said it didn’t appear that they had found any major breaks in the case.

Doherty said the State Police released Revere Fire shortly afterward.

However, there were no explanations or debriefings for local first responders.

"Everything was very tight-lipped,” said Doherty. "Even the State Police were out of the loop. It was pretty intense.”

Investigators, however, continued to search the apartment and left with three bags full of unidentified items.

Investigators cleared the scene around 2 a.m. Tuesday morning.

There were no discussions about the raid on the Beach by FBI officials.

The only allusion they would make to the early morning actions were that they were pursuing leads that would take them to a variety of places around the region.

All day Tuesday, it wasn’t clear if the Saudi man from Ocean Avenue was a suspect or whether he was just an innocent bystander who mistakenly had gotten caught up in the flurry of activity.

All signs late on Tuesday seemed to point to the fact that the Saudi man was simply watching the race, and happened to be the first possible lead that investigators tracked down.

The man had apparently come to the United States to study English – that according to a Boston Herald interview on Tuesday with the man’s roommate.

The two men lived with a third roommate, who is out of the state right now.

The building at 364 Ocean Ave. has had its share of problems over the last few years, mostly due to the fact that there is a high-turnover rate for residents. That’s because many of the units are apparently sublet to International students who are studying at universities in Boston and Cambridge.

In October 2011, Revere Police arrested a North Korean man who got drunk and couldn’t speak English – in the process breaking into the 10th floor apartment of men who were sleeping and punching them in the face. The man was a student at a local college and had come to a party in the building, but after smoking a cigarette outside, was too drunk to remember how to get back to the right apartment.

In May 2012, police arrested a Moroccan man living in the building for alleged sexual assaults that took place in and around the building. When police responded to arrest the man, he retreated into his apartment and tried to set the building on fire.

Elderly residents of the building – who have lived there for many years – have phoned the Journal repeatedly over the last two years to say they are fearful and scared of the people who now live there.


Broadway Revere Gets a New Look


Street Lights Giving Broadway a New Look

April 17, 2013

Antique light fixtures this past week have added a touch of the past to a Broadway corridor that has seen better days, and will hopefully have much brighter days ahead.

After laying the electrical groundwork for the project last summer, crews moved in quickly last week and began installing the black, antique streetlights late last week.

Mayor Dan Rizzo and City Planner Frank Stringi said it is Phase I of what they hope to be a complete new era for the Broadway corridor.

"This is the first part of our overall plan to revitalize Broadway, the city’s Central Business District,” said Rizzo. "Our goal is to completely transform the look and feel to create a warm and inviting destination where business would like to locate and residents and guests to dine and shop. We believe that a vibrant and relevant downtown will portray a positive image of a city that is on the move, and over time, present more options for people to gravitate towards.”

Stringi said that for a short period of time, the old lights and the new lights would be in place. In about four weeks though, the old lights will come down, leaving only the historic lighting in place.

"Right now, we’ve done the central stretch from Hyde Street to Central Avenue on Broadway,” he said. "We’d like to extend it so it goes all the way from Beach Street to Mountain Avenue. This, however, is just the first phase for the lighting.”

Economic Development Director John Festa told the Journal that in two weeks, the City would have a meeting with the Broadway Advisory Committee. That meeting would focus on parking.

"We want to look at the parking issues in the area,” he said. "We’re going to have some really nice drawings for ideas at the Municipal Parking lot and Aucella Court, as well as the demolition of the old Police Station area.”

Beyond that, Stringi said this summer they would begin working on streetscape improvements in the Broadway area, including new crosswalks, curb ramps, new trash receptacles and new tree planters.

"As we go along in the program, we’ll do a full design of the Central Business District with things in place like bump outs and plaza areas,” he said.

The third part of the program will focus on storefronts, and includes a program to help storeowners fund such improvements to their façade or signage.

In fact, Stringi said the plan is to pay 100 percent of a signage upgrade for storeowners – up to $5,000 – provided that the signage and lighting conforms to the new district standards.

"We want to pay 100 percent for signage and lighting as a real incentive to get this going,” he said. "We’re looking for things like the gooseneck lighting and signs such as you see on the rehabilitated building across from City Hall.”

For the façade program, he said storeowners would be eligible for a 50 percent matching program that could provide as much as $25,000 in assistance.

"That will be a 50 percent match program,” he said. "If a storeowner has a $50,000 project, we can fund them up to $25,000. I think that’s the only way to complete the program and get such investments. It’s not really encouraging uniformity. We want every property to be different and unique, but also to meet guidelines and keep things attractive – accentuating the architectural design of some of the older buildings.”


Business paratnership to be offered at Suffolk


Business Partnership to Be Offered at Suffolk

April 10, 2013

Suffolk Downs and its partner, Caesars Entertainment, will announce their plans Thursday for a multi-faceted business partnership program, offering local businesses a variety of opportunities to benefit from the proposed $1 billion resort casino at the historic racetrack.

The event will include details about the opportunities for local businesses to become both on-site and off-site vendors. Local business leaders will attend, including members of the Revere and Eastie Chambers of Commerce.

With over 40 million customers, Caesars’ Total Rewards® program is the leading loyalty program in the gaming industry. Local businesses will have the opportunity to both benefit from the Total Rewards® program, which will allow members to redeem their rewards at participating local businesses, and to partner with the resort as an on-site restaurant, among other opportunities.

This small business announcement comes not long after Suffolk Downs and Caesars Entertainment announced a major arts and cultural agreement with the Citi Performing Arts Center in Boston


Harley Davidson coming to Linden Property in Revere


Harley Dealer Coming to Linden Sq. Property

April 10, 2013

A major change is afoot in Linden Square as a vacant supermarket and broken down health club is in line to be replaced with shiny silver tailpipes and a Northeast headquarters for the squeals of Harley-Davidson "hawgs.”

The Boston Harley dealer – long a fixture on Revere Beach Parkway in Everett – has filed plans with the City that would clear the path to build a huge, new Harley complex on the current retail site that, admittedly, has seen better days.

The plan includes gutting and rehabilitating the existing buildings and putting up a new facade. However, before any of that can happen, the company must get a zoning change and a special permit from the City Council. The zoning change will be heard on April 22nd.

Attorney Gerry D’Ambrosio said the company will purchase the property for $12 million and put another $3 million into completely refurbishing the existing buildings – a grand total of $15 million in new investment.

"They envision this being a dealership in Massachusetts that will be a home base and which will be one of the largest franchises in the United States,” he said. "The City has been very receptive to this new development. They want this to be their flagship headquarters for the Northeast. It’s a marquee name these day – Harley-Davidson. They’re not cheap bikes. They’re the Rolls Royce of motorcycles. Their target audience is yuppie professionals.”

For the record, the zoning change includes adding Class I and II motor vehicle sales to the Industrial Park Zone. Currently, that use is not allowed in that zone. If that change is approved, the company would pursue a special permit before the Council, perhaps as soon as late May.

City Councillors said on Monday they had some initial concerns about having loud motorcycles relocating to Revere, but after seeing preliminary plans, most indicated that it looked like a good use.

Councillor Charlie Patch said he had very little reservations about it at the moment.

"I’ve seen some of the drawings and I think people will be pleased with what they want to do on the site,” he said. "It’s a dead area right now and you hate to see those areas stay dead too long. To me, it sounds like a good thing. I hate empty buildings and we don’t need another food market there…Even with the name Harley-Davidson coming to Revere, that’s a big name a little plus for Revere.”

Councillor Stephen Reardon said a new Harley dealership would likely bring a new kind of customer to that area of the city.

"Really, if you think about it, these are expensive motorcycles and their clientele are doctors and lawyers and other professionals who have the money to spend on these bikes,” said Councillor Stephen Reardon, who is the chair of the Zoning Committee.

Councillor Tony Zambuto was also favorable to the plan – at least at first glance.

Boston Harley specializes in new and used Harley-Davidson motorcycle sales, and they also have a pretty active service department. They are listed as the premiere dealer in the Boston area, and also sell a good deal of accessories.

They are currently located at 1760 Revere Beach Parkway, Everett, and their parent corporation – Black Marble Motorcycles LLC – is based out of North Hampton, NH, where they own all of the New Hampshire franchises. The partners in the company – all of North Hampton – are Daniel Stay, John McGonagle, Shawn Lillie, and Alan Contois.

The current owners of the property are Squire LLC and Wesley LLC, both based in Belmont. A storage building on the Malden side of the property is also reportedly included in the land acquisition.

D’Ambrosio added that the new administration has been key in attracting businesses like Harley.

"Mayor Rizzo and Economic Development Director John Festa have really done a marvelous job at reinventing the City’s reputation of being extremely friendly to new business,” he said. "I think that has served as a facilitator for a lot of the newfound interest in Revere…Harley-Davidson is a perfect example of that.”


Revere High School to receive $450,000.00 grant.


RHS to Receive $450,000 Grant

April 10, 2013

District administrators and Revere High School (RHS) officials this week are touting a $450,000 grant from the Nellie Mae Foundation as one of the biggest things to happen to RHS in decades.

Though there has been talk of the innovative grant coming Revere’s way for about two weeks, the official announcement came late last Wednesday. RHS was one of only two schools in Massachusetts to receive the grant, with Chelsea – ironically – being the only other.

The 20-month grant from the private Nellie Mae is looking to help implement and speed up innovative approaches to urban education, and in addition to Revere and Chelsea, Nellie Mae also picked four districts in Connecticut and Providence, RI. The $450,000 grant will look to cover the costs of speeding up the work already begun at most districts in a variety of different areas. In Revere’s case, Supt. Paul Dakin and Fellowship Administrator Chris Fraser said the district would be using the money to continue instructing teachers on how to best utilize new technology in the classroom.

In school speak, what RHS is looking to do is speed up a project that currently exists in the Freshman Academy – a project where the traditional teacher model of lecturing in front of the classroom is obliterated with iPads, independent student investigation and a "Flipped Classroom.”

"The ultimate goal is to make RHS such a laboratory for this that other districts and schools will want to come and take a look at what we did and what we are doing,” said Dakin. "Nellie Mae likes what we’re doing now and wants us to continue doing it. The philosophy and groundwork here have been set and we’re already pushing along with this. We’ll let the grant’s funding mechanism catch up to us. I want to look at RHS in four years and say it’s a model for the rest of the country. Nellie Mae believes we can do that, and they’ve given us the grant so we can do it quicker.

"This is the biggest thing to happen to RHS that I’ve seen,” he continued.

"It’s fertile ground here for the new innovation team,” said Fraser. "I’ve been in classrooms in California and Texas that gave computers with all the bells and whistles to students. However, there’s no proof they are learning things.

"The reaction here so far is not that there is this new gizmo,” he added. "I would say three out of four teachers are excited about this after seeing how it worked at the Freshman Academy this year. The one in four are apprehensive because of the paradigm shift. What has happened in the PILOT program at the Freshman Academy this year has shown most teachers that this is something they need to grab onto.”

The trick will be getting teachers and students to let go of the traditional way of teaching and learning – that being the idea of having every student quietly paying attention as the teacher lectures day after day about a particular subject.

That sort of learning model, both said, is becoming a relic of the past due to the rapid changes in information technology.

"The trouble is our traditionalists in the profession teach how they were taught,” said Dakin. "It’s a generational change we have to accelerate. As I math teacher, I thought I earned my pay the most when I had filled the blackboard with math problems, the kids had taken eight pages of notes, and I went home with chalk all over me. I used that approach for years and it’s a dead approach now. It’s not how employers want their employees to think. They want critical thinkers. It’s a completely different approach to solving a problem.”

Fraser, who started out as a teacher before delving into school redesign issues, said making the transition is very uncomfortable, but eventually frees up much-needed time for one-on-one instruction.

"It feels uncomfortable as a teacher to see all these students doing different things,” he said. "As a teacher, you want control and you want everyone paying attention to you as you stand in front of the room and lecture. That isn’t always helpful. When you give up control and have several different pods of learning going at different paces, it can feel awkward. Some students might learn well by themselves and very independently. Some students might need to collaborate more and get more teacher input. The good thing is that this change will free up teachers to provide that kind of attention.”

The grant is pictured as a way to speed up the acclimation process for teachers concerning this uncomfortable shift in the classroom – a shift that is known as going from "teacher-centered” learning to "student-centered” learning.

Dakin said he envisions pockets of teachers being pulled out during school days to participate in training sessions. He even sees some teachers going out of state to observe other programs.

"I see teachers, three to five of them, going out to a place and observing, researching and bringing it back to share with us,” he said. "Professional development will likely be in the schools, after school and in the summertime. There’s money there now to pay for and buy additional teacher time for them to learn. We will be able to pay them to learn on days that were traditionally a day off.”

In the end, Dakin said the change would have taken place whether Revere won the grant or not. And he added that they were headed in that direction anyhow. Now, however, the school and Principal Lourenco Garcia are guaranteed to be on the cusp of the change.

"As much as a mechanic’s job, a doctor’s job and even a farmer’s job has been changed by technology, it’s only a matter of time before that kind of major change happens for a teacher,” said Dakin. "We want to be on the forefront of this change rather than on the back of it – for our kids’ sake.”


Waugh's of Revere Closes its doors.


Waugh Auto Repair Closes Its Doors

April 4, 2013

Another legendary Broadway family business is heading to the history books.

Waugh’s Automotive on the corner of Broadway and Fenno Street will close its doors for the last time on Saturday, April 6th, and Dick and Terry Waugh will enter into retirement.

It will be the first time that a Waugh hasn’t reported to work on that corner since the 1930s.

"I came here when I was in high school and worked here while I was in high school,” said Dick on Monday, after announcing the shop’s closure. "When I was still in high school I used to run errands for my father into Boston to get parts. I enjoyed that and all the other work and really fell in love with the business. I worked my way into it and took it over 51 years ago from my father. That was March 25, 1962.”

While Dick Waugh runs the shop, his brothers are also corporate partners in the family company. They include, Samuel of New Hampshire, and twins Harvey (of Lynnfield) and Roger (of Revere Beach). Dick was also a 1954 graduate of Revere High School, finishing up before taking over for his father.

Terry said the business began, however, long before Dick Waugh took the reins from his father, Samuel Waugh.

"We think the building was built in the 1930s,” she said. "His Dad started as a Ford associate dealer before World War II and then it turned into a Chrysler Plymouth dealership. After he died, Chrysler had a hard time and we just sold used cars and did automotive repairs.”

Added Dick, "We think we are the oldest existing business on Broadway. We can’t think of anything that’s been on Broadway longer than us. (other than Broadway Motors that has been there for 65 years.) So, we believe we are the oldest.”

They also added that they expanded into parts distribution, and became an official distributorship of Mopar auto parts – a business that was brisk for years.

The shop also enjoyed a prime location on one of the busiest corners of the city, and the Waugh’s took advantage of that location in recent years to make drivers do a double-take at the display in their showroom.

Often one would see a hot rod car, seasonal decorations on the cars, or dolls placed "creatively” on Dick’s refurbished Rolls Royce.

"We went to a flea market once and found these dolls that go on the cars and started by putting one of them out there,” said Terry. "Then it seemed like every season it grew and grew. We actually had one doll dressed in a leather suit – a bikey – and someone broke in and stole it. They found the guy with the doll sitting at a bus stop on Broadway and we got it back.”

Beyond the good years and good feelings amongst customers, employees and business colleagues – there is a deeper sense of loss with the closing of Waugh’s. Like so many before it, long-time businesses like Stearn’s Hardware, Maggio’s Restaurant and others have seen long runs come to an end over the last 10 years. For many who have lived in Revere for generations – or even for 10 years or so – the closing seems to feel like another sign of the end of an era.

"It is the end of an era here,” said Terry. "Big business doesn’t care as much. You’re not a face or a person or a friend. You lose that individuality that smaller shops had.”

Dick agreed, "The personal touch is gone in a lot of businesses. Individual attention in business is gone – at least the way we did it – and it’s sad, but life moves on.”

Dick reminisced about doing repairs for people on credit, letting them pay when they could; about giving major discounts to elderly customers who could never have paid full price; and about people who had been taken advantage of by less reputable shops.

"I had to be honest,” he said. "That was just my way. The horror stories we got. People would come in and be so upset about what had happened to them. We would look at it and find a simple fix and they were always so relieved. That’s why we leave with mixed emotions. The people of Revere and the surrounding areas are just fantastic.”

Added Terry, "They’re not only good customers, but also they’ve come to be friends over the years. People here have been so loyal to Dick over the years.”

Nevertheless, looking over their shop, both Waughs – who are in their 70s – said they are ready to retire so they can spend more time with their three children and three granddaughters. A sale of the building is pending, and Joe Green of Century 21 D’Amico is representing the family. While they could not release specifics, they said it would be a similar business and wouldn’t be apartments or condos.

They said they wished to thank former employees Tommy Gallant, Kenny Wilson, Robert Carbone, Mary Gates and John Stewart – among many others.

As the discussion came to a close on Monday, Terry asked Dick if it was a good time to retire.

He leaned back in his chair, thought about it, and said, "Yea, it sure is.”


City of Revere Was rich in schools


City Was Rich with Schools

March 28, 2013

There was a time when Revere Public Schools had no shortage of properties and schools – boasting some 18 properties in its envelope of schools just a few short decades ago.

In fact, there were so many surplus schools in the late 1970s and early 1980s, that the City couldn’t get rid of them fast enough – most of them being sold off to developers for multi-unit housing.

Fast forward to 2013 and the schools are so land-poor that as soon as they finish a new school, they’re desperately looking for property to build another. That situation was especially highlighted with the McKinley School (now Hill School) debate where a public park in the center of the city had to be taken in order to build the new school – not to mention all of the extra land accommodations that had to be put in place to make it happen.

With that in mind, many wonder (with the help of hindsight being 20/20) if getting rid of properties like the Wolcott School on North Shore Road, the Shurtleff School on School Street, the Barrows School on Mountain Avenue and the Waite School in North Revere was such a good idea.

School Committeeman Fred Sannella – a former educator who was involved in the process of getting rid of properties in the 1980s – said the large number of schools was a product of Revere going from a farming community to a residential city.

"Most of those schools were the same age as the McKinley School and they were built at the turn of the last Century and they were formed on the neighborhood concept,” he said. "As the city expanded from farming, new schools followed. They ended up with 17 or 18 schools at one time. Schools were a vital part of the neighborhoods in that time.”

Sannella said the City probably made a mistake in getting rid of so many properties in the 1970s and 1980s. However, he also said some of the schools were probably not worth saving, and in those times, the school population was on a major decline.

Many school classrooms were nearly empty, and combining schools made sense when it came to saving on utilities and other fixed costs. However, Sannella holds that maybe some schools could have been saved.

"The Roosevelt School in the Pines was completely rehabbed after the Blizzard of `78 and I thought it would have been perfect for the Superintendent’s Office, but they got rid of it anyway,” he said. "Now, 30 years later, they’re going crazy looking for space to put the Superintendent’s Office.”

He added, "They definitely made a mistake in not keeping some of those properties. Even if the sties were simply used for off-street parking in snow emergencies, it would have proven worth it now. Unfortunately the mindset of government in those days was to get rid of it. I think it didn’t show a lot of insight…Getting things on the tax rolls was important then. They even had vacant lots they sold for $300. The same for the old schools, being sold mostly to developers. Unfortunately, the taxes don’t end up paying for all the services. That was the misconception.”

However, Councillor Bob Haas – who was a city councillor at the time the schools were mostly sold off – said the City didn’t make any mistakes. He said no one could have predicted the boom in students that exists today, and at the time the old schools were sucking up money unnecessarily.

"I don’t think they made a mistake,” he said. "At the time, no one could have predicted the tremendous influx of students. Even if you had boarded them up securely, I don’t think any of them would have met the criteria set by the state for a modern school. If you tried to open it now after all these years, they likely wouldn’t be able to.

"People like to say, ‘Why did you tear them down?’” Haas continued. "’We should have saved them’ they say. It’s easy to say now, but I don’t know if it’s that easy.”

Superintendent Paul Dakin said he didn’t believe any of the old schools would have been useful, nor would the properties – many of which are too small for a modern school.

"They did sell all those properties, but in all honesty, I don’t know that any of them would be appropriate to be used as a school nowadays,” he said. "They didn’t have cafeterias or gyms or pick up/drop off areas. It’s a whole different operation now than when those buildings were built. They didn’t have cafeterias in those days because all kids brown bagged it or just went home for lunch. The fact the City sold them off probably wasn’t a mistake, as I don’t know that any of them could function as a modern learning environment. To my recollection, even the properties were squared in like the Garfield and Lincoln are now.”

Sannella said he hopes that a lesson from the past is learned with the old McKinley School if it is mothballed for a few years. He said many of the old schools that were boarded up ended up burning very shortly after they were discontinued, including old Revere High School.

"I just hope the old McKinley is secure when the kids move to the new Hill School,” he said. "I just don’t want it to meet the fate of the other schools that closed down and then burnt down soon afterward


Revere youth mauled by two dogs


Boy, 14, Mauled by Two Guard Dogs

March 28, 2013

The blood-curdling screams of 14-year-old Brandon Marchetti could be heard repeatedly on the 9-1-1 tape as 12-year-old Carmen Scoppettuolo – Marchetti’s friend – told Marchetti to roll up in a ball to avoid the relentless attacks of two Rottweilers guarding a construction demolition yard behind Northgate Mall.

"Help is coming,” yelled Carmen in a crackly, high-pitched voice during the incident last Thursday.

"Tell him to cover his ears and his head and get in a fetal position,” instructed Calltaker Lauren O’Hara.

"He’s covering his ears and his head is all bloody,” said the boy while agonizing screams from the victim rang out in the background. "The dog is biting him bad, biting him on the arms, legs and side of the head. It’s two Rotts.”

"Is anybody with him?” asked the calltaker.

"No,” replied the boy.

"Are the dogs near his head?” asked the calltaker.

"Yes,” replied the boy.

"I want you to tell him to cover his ears and head, can you tell him that,” said the calltaker.

"Ok, cover your ears,” yelled the boy. "Help is on the way. Cover your head. He got his arm.”

That leads into another series of awful screams as the friend, Carmen, says, "Oh no. Can an ambulance come real quick?”

"They’re coming any minute, I promise you,” replied Calltaker O’Hara.

Just a bit after that public safety personnel rolled onto the scene, with firefighters from the Engine 3 in North Revere arriving just ahead of Revere Police officers.

Officers found Marchetti around 5:45 p.m. lying face down in the mud, unresponsive, inside the secure fencing of R.E. Traniello Equipment Company. Two Rottweiler guard dogs were on top of him, one mauling his head and another his leg.

Officer Michael Mullen apparently fired first on one of the dogs from the other side of the fence, hitting it in the rear end.

That’s when firefighters made good use of improvisational thinking by turning on a fire hose and letting it loose on the dogs, protecting the boy and driving the dogs away.

However, as they began spraying the hose, Mullen had already scaled the fence, cutting himself badly, and gone forward to rescue the boy as the dogs circled him.

"He just jumped over the fence before anyone knew it,” said Lt. Amy O’Hara. "He still had his firearm in his hand and he ran over to the kid, scooped him up and carried him over to a locked gate, which firefighters cut open. Obviously, the dogs were still running around and could have attacked Mullen too. There’s no doubt from people on the scene that Michael Mullen saved this boy’s life.”

Once through the fence, ambulance personnel took charge of the boy and rushed him to the hospital.

His injuries were critical, reportedly having parts of his skull exposed from the attack and his leg severely injured. So far, the young man has survived his injuries and has undergone surgery this week. He reportedly will have a great deal of plastic surgery necessary in the near future.

Fire Chief Gene Doherty praised his personnel for thinking quickly to use a fire hose to ward off the dog, who, despite being shot, continued to come after the Marchetti boy.

"It was funny they came up with that,” said Doherty. "That’s not something you can train for. I told them that it was good thinking on their part. The captain – who is 63 or so – said he thought of the riots in the 1960s and how they used a fire hose to push the people back. He just had that idea and ran with it and it was very effective. It didn’t endanger the kid and it pushed the dogs away.”

He also praised the actions of Calltaker O’Hara.

"Lauren did a great job keeping the kid on the line, keeping him calm and telling him what to do; thank God the kid had a cell phone,” said Doherty. "I’m not always in favor of young kids having cell phones, but without that 12-year-old having a cell phone to talk with Lauren, there probably would have been a death. Getting to a phone to call would have tripled the response time.”

Doherty said once the location was identified, the response time was just over four minutes.

Police officials praised the quick, brave actions of Officer Mullen. For the officer, the positive public spotlight is sort of a redemption after being a hair’s breath away from being fired just two years ago. Following a damaging report in the Boston television media showing Mullen at home routinely while on duty, superior officers in the department called for his termination.

However, he was given a second chance, and the Marchetti family couldn’t have been happier about that outcome.

Said Marchetti’s mother, Silvana Marchetti, in a statement, "I can’t thank Officer Mullen enough. If it wasn’t for my son’s friend and Officer Mullen, my baby would not be here today. I appreciate with all my heart what they did for him. They saved his life and reduced the amount of injuries that he could have sustained, if not (something) worse. I can’t thank you enough.”

Lt. O’Hara indicated it was a redemption for Officer Mullen.

"It really was redemption for him,” she said. "This was a situation needed action and he did it. Some people were surprised. Michael Mullen went over that fence without hesitation and scooped up the kid and saved him without a second thought.”

Mayor Dan Rizzo said the City is very concerned for the boy’s well being, and he also praised the work of Officer Mullen.

"Obviously our main concern is for the young boy’s future well-being,” said the mayor on Monday. "This was an horrific attack in what appears to be an awful accident. The dogs apparently were behind locked gates and used as guard dogs. Animals, domesticated or otherwise can be unpredictable, and in this case produced a brutally severe outcome. I am grateful and proud of Office Mike Mullen’s quick and deliberate response that in all honesty, saved that child’s life. Our continued thoughts and well wishes are with the entire family.”

The dogs, Sonny and Bella – who have long-guarded the demolition construction yard for Pines Road resident Ralph Traniello – were voluntarily put down after the incident.

"He’s a local guy and lives in the Pines,” said Doherty. "I’ve seen him walking the dogs up there because I live nearby. They always seemed pretty docile and people pet them. I guess he had them for quite some time. This time, they were in their environment where they’re supposed to be protecting the yard. This kid climbed over the fence and thought he would play with the dogs.”

Apparently, though, playing with the dogs was nothing new.

On the 9-1-1 tape, Carmen is heard saying, "They were really nice and then not any more…We went behind Northgate to pet them. We went over to pet them.”

Carmen told the Boston Herald last weekend that he and Marchetti had been going over to the yard since last summer to pet the dogs through the fence. He said that they would walk to McDonald’s for burgers from the Marchetti’s Patriots Parkway home, and afterward they would always go back and visit the dogs – dogs he believed were very friendly and always eager to see them.

Last Thursday, however, Marchetti decided to climb over the fence to get closer. After going into the yard and doing something with his cell phone, the formerly friendly dogs went into attack mode.

Some have postulated that he might have gone in the yard on another occasion without incident.

Doherty added that all guard dogs are, by state law, supposed to be reported to the Fire Department. That was not done in this case.

"Technically, there is specific language in state law saying that whoever keeps guard dogs has to report them to the local Fire Prevention office,” he said. "I can say they didn’t do that. The only person who has done that is Rent-A-Tool, and they’ve done that for years.”

On Monday, East Boston Savings Bank announced they have established a fund to benefit the Marchetti family. Silvana Marchetti is a long-time EBSB employee at the Winthrop branch office.

Donations can be dropped off at any EBSB branch office during business hours. Or, donations can also be mailed to The Silvana Marchetti, Brandon Marchetti Fund, c/o East Boston Savings Bank-Revere Branch, 10 Meridian Street, East Boston, MA 02128.

All checks should be made payable to the Brandon Marchetti Fund.

Marchetti is a seventh-grader at the Susan B. Anthony School.

Public safety officials who are scheduled for public commendation for their actions are Officer Mullen, Calltaker O’Hara, Fire Capt. Dave Rossetti, Firefighter Chris Mirasolo and Firefighter Mike O’Hara


Revere Officials no nothing of most dog owners


Most Dogs Not Registered or Known to City Officials

March 28, 2013

The City has made great gains in the last year to license dogs residing in Revere, but still thousands of dogs are potentially unlicensed and unknown to City officials.

Per state law, dog owners are required to annually license their dog or dogs with the City Clerk of a municipality and pay a small fee. In return, each registered dog gets a tag to wear around its neck. That tag identifies the dog, its owner and any pertinent information about that dog. It also lets authorities know if a dog is potentially dangerous or has had incidents in the past.

However, despite the law, not many people register.

City Clerk Ashley Melnik said there are 2,811 registered dogs in the City, but probably a lot more unregistered.

"There are well-over 2,000 dogs in the City, obviously, but there’s just no real means of getting people in to register,” she said. "Some people don’t even know they have to do that.”

Melnik said they send out an annual mailer to homes in the City informing them of the need to register their dogs, but they certainly don’t get full cooperation in that.

Likewise, when the dog officer comes across an unleashed and unregistered dog, he does write the owner a ticket. Part of resolving that ticket includes fully registering the dog with the City Clerk.

This year, statistics show that many more people have registered their dogs, jumping from 1,170 in 2012 to 2,811 this year. There were 1,183 in 2011.

"We don’t have the manpower to go around and knock on doors looking to see if people have dogs, but if an unregistered dog comes by us, we will make the owner register that dog,” said Melnik. "Also, by law, when veterinarians do rabies shots, they have to send a certificate to the City Clerk and that’s how we’ve been building up the list this year. Most people will register once they know they have to.”


Suffolk Downs Featured in Boston Sports.


Suffolk Downs Featured in ‘Boston Sports Temples’ Exhibition

March 22, 2013

Suffolk Downs is one of four historic sports venues featured in Boston Public Library’s current "Boston Sports Temples” exhibition, which showcases these beloved venues and their unique roles in the daily lives and hearts of generations of New Englanders.

Suffolk Downs is joined by Fenway Park, the original Boston Garden and Braves Field in the exhibition, which is part of Boston Public Library’s "Building Boston” initiative, a citywide celebration of Boston’s public spaces.

Featuring Boston Public Library’s outstanding collection of historic sports photography, the exhibition follows the creation and evolution of these four great public venues; their varied and changing roles, functions, and communities of users; and their powerful connections with millions of devoted fans who have filled their seats night after night, season after season. The exhibition is sponsored by the Boston Public Library Foundation.

"Boston Public Library holds an enormous collection of historic Boston sports photographs and after looking through what we have, Suffolk Downs came to the forefront as a major area of subject matter for our sports collection,” said Beth Prindle, Manager of Exhibitions and Programming at Boston Public Library. "Suffolk Downs and Fenway Park are interesting in this particular exhibition because they are the only two major venues that still stand. If you’re looking at the continuity of tradition, those are the two spaces where people can go and sit in the same places that they might have sat 50 years ago.”

"Suffolk Downs is honored to be included in this exhibition, which really brings to life our rich history and the place that we hold within the Boston sports community,” said Chip Tuttle, Chief Operating Officer of Suffolk Downs. "This is a wonderful exhibit and, as we look toward the future, it reminds us of the need to preserve some of these elements that give the greater Boston area its unique character and sense of place.”

In addition to the many photographs on display, the exhibition includes an original track program from June 29, 1936. Among the horses listed in this program is Seabiscuit, who won the fourth race that day and caught the eye of trainer Tom Smith, who would go on to lead Seabiscuit to national prominence.

The "Boston Sports Temples” exhibition will be on display at the BPL’s Central Library, located at 700 Boylston Street in Copley Square, through May 31. On Tuesday, May 21, Tuttle and Suffolk Downs Vice President of Marketing and Communications Christian Teja will be speaking in the BPL’s Author Talk series. Teja is the author of "Suffolk Downs,” a pictorial history of the 78-year-old racetrack featuring many of the images included in the Sports Temples collection.


Della Russo Stadium to be refurbished.


Della Russo Stadium

March 22, 2013

The vote last week by the Revere City Council to authorize $5.5M bonding for the refurbishment of Harry Della Russo Stadium is long overdue and needs to be commended.

In these tough times to spend money on re-doing a park may seem like a project that can be put on hold until better times. We know that there is a list of problem areas that must be fixed like the sewer lines and to some these repairs must take priority.

However, it is this type of rationale that leads to a diminished quality of life for all the residents of our city.

Public outdoor space is perhaps the most valuable asset that a City like Revere can have and should maintain.

In the neighboring city of Everett, Mayor Carlo DeMaria has made it a priority to put public parks improvements on an equal par with other repairs like streets and sidewalks.

The repairs to Della Russo Stadium will include a new field house, a regulation track, new lighting, field turf, new bleachers, a new concession stand and bathrooms, two new basketball courts and new fencing. In this day and age when so many of our youth teams like Pop Warner or High School teams visit other cities’ facilities, the difference is immediately noticeable. Many of these municipalities have spent millions on improving their outdoor public parks and playing fields.

This commitment by the city officials to spend this money and as Councillor Richard Penta said, "do it right” is a step towards making Revere a city where the children who use these playing fields today will want to stay and raise their families in Revere tomorrow.


The changing fac of Revere


The Changing Face of Revere

March 22, 2013

To the Editor:

People have been saying for sometime now that the City of Revere is changing right before our eyes. I had always resisted such a notion, feeling that the Revere I grew up in hasn’t changed much at all. It was a destination for immigrants then, when my grandparents came from Italy and Lithuania, just as it is today. The origin of the residents may have changed, but Revere has stayed basically the same. Or so I thought.

The process to build a new McKinley school showed me how wrong I was and how much Revere really has changed.

As a kid growing up in Revere I remember watching city council meetings on Continental Cablevision. There were always city councilmen who played to the camera and spoke for the purpose of hearing themselves speak. Disingenuous reasoning is a skill most politicians seem to possess in abundance.

Back then, the city government seemed to be always hiding numbers and making shady deals on school buildings, so the lack of transparency and political babble on display during the process was certainly nothing new. Revere’s politicians have long believed that they run things, we just live here.

As a matter of fact, with it’s use of the ever-changing  spreadsheet, and ballooning list of unanswered questions, this administration seems to be operating in the tradition established by mayors gone by, and some mayors who have gone bye bye. That particular aspect of the process is nothing new and is a rich Revere tradition

Where Revere has really changed is in the level of discourse. We now have leaders of the school department and other elected officials taking to the Internet to denigrate and insult people who don’t agree with them. They question people’s motives without addressing their legitimate concerns. They spread untruths and innuendo, they ridicule, bully, and generally treat their opponents with disdain and disrespect.

Because as we all know, if you don’t agree with their views, then you obviously don’t care about  our children. and who could possibly have respect for people who don’t care about our children.

Trying to voice legitimate concerns at the bond hearing for the McKinley school, opponents of this cabal were vilified and bullied into silence. There were several opponents of the various bond issues concerning the McKinley school  that were intimidated by the vitriol of the supporters at the public hearing and remained silent or just went home.

Having experienced the wrath of the supporters, I can tell you first hand getting heckled, interrupted, glared at and treated like the skunk at the garden party by many of your supposed friends is a very sobering experience and not one I am eager to repeat.

The days when people took the time to listen to others and tried to understand their concerns seem long gone. There was a time  when we worked toward  building a consensus, and looked out for the greater good of all the residents of our city.

We now have residents who are driven by a narrow self-interest. They want what they want, when they want it, regardless of how much it cost or how it will impact the lives of others. if you have a different view or idea, they have no interest in hearing what you have to say and will shout you down if they have to, in order to silence the opposition

In that respect I think Revere has changed quite a bit and not for the better


Market Basket in Revere will open this year!


Market Basket Will Open This Year

March 13, 2013

The DeMoulas Market Basket store – largely seen as a transformative development at the Northgate Mall – is moving rapidly and company representatives said they should be open for business in 2013.

The construction project has been moving at a brisk pace, with the structure now fully in place and brick masons beginning their work this week. The company took out a $3 million building permit last week to begin the interior work.

David McClain of DeMoulas said they don’t have a target date for opening, but it will be as soon as possible and within the calendar year.

"We’re excited to get Revere up and running,” said McClain. "The winter didn’t help this year compared to last year. Hopefully Mother Nature has had its last hurrah. We’re working on getting that building tight now and starting the interior fit-ups – the HVAC, plumbing and electrical. It’s really all hands on deck now.”

Once a shopping Mecca, the Northgate Mall fell on hard times in the early 2000s, but is seeing a bit of a resurgence now. Many believe that the new grocery store will bring more shoppers to the area and, with that, more desirable stores – as happened in Chelsea’s transformed Mystic Mall.

Mayor Dan Rizzo said he is excited to see the store come in and is preparing for the final details on the company’s property tax agreement.

"I think Market Basket is going to be a terrific catalyst for Northgate,” he said. "Right now, they’re set to go before the state board on March 26th that decides on TIFs. That will be the final piece they need to move ahead to full completion. I think it’s going to give the people of Revere another choice where they can buy their groceries.

"Also, retailers are going to want to go into an area that creates a lot of foot traffic and brings a lot of people to the shopping center,” he added.

One interesting twist is that the somewhat new Price Rite store about 100 feet in front of the new Market Basket will continue to operate. Many had thought the company would be bought out or that there would be some partnership established.

However, Price Rite officials said this week that they look forward to continuing to operate in Northgate.

"PriceRite operates 51 stores across six states, four of which are in the Boston area and we are proud to serve our customers in that market,” said Neil Duffy, PriceRite president. "The PriceRite of Revere has been a vital part of the community since 2010. We welcome our new neighbors and look forward to continuing to serve the community, bringing great value and high quality products to our loyal customers.”

Meanwhile, Market Basket continues an aggressive expansion all over the region with some six stores now under construction and one in the works at the old GE site in Lynn.


New Developer Buys Roseland


New Developer Buys Roseland

January 31, 2013

A New Jersey-based company has acquired the Roseland Development Company and its Overlook Ridge project in North Revere and has aggressive plans to revive several long-stalled Roseland projects.

Mack-Cali Realty Corporation of Edison, NJ, announced a barrage of development action last week, not long after finalizing a deal to take over Roseland Development Company and buy out most of the stake of its funding partner, Prudential Insurance Company.

Mack-Cali Realty first announced last week that it has purchased Alterra at Overlook Ridge 1A for $61.3 million (310 units) and also Alterra at Overlook Ridge 1B for $88.7 million (412 units). Alterra 1A came online in 2004 and 1B came online in 2008. The two projects contain 722 rental units and are currently 97.2 percent leased.

Mitchell E. Hersh, president and chief executive officer of Mack-Cali, commented, "The acquisition of Alterra perfectly complements our recent acquisition of the real estate development and management businesses of Roseland and its imminent development interests at Overlook Ridge. We expect to place mortgage financing on the property that will provide a cash on cash yield in excess of 9 percent.”
Marshall B. Tycher, co-president of Roseland, commented, "We were attracted to this acquisition because these premier assets represent the finest in luxury, location, and amenities, and are consistent with the highest quality properties in the marketplace, as well as the opportunity for a value-add component. With a planned interior cosmetic modernization we are confident we can command today’s higher market rents.”

Mack-Cali acquired the Overlook Ridge project from long-time investor and Overlook partner, Prudential Insurance Company. That purchase came after Mack-Cali announced last October that it was acquiring Roseland and folding it into their company.

That deal closed at the end of 2012, and came at a total price of $134.6 million. Some $115 million of that price came in cash and approximately $4 million of assumed debt at closing and an additional earn-out of up to $15.6 million in cash over the next three years. During the three-year earn-out period, each of Roseland’s principals, Marshall Tycher, Brad Klatt, and Carl Goldberg, will serve as co-presidents of Roseland Management Services, L.P., a newly formed wholly owned subsidiary of Mack-Cali, pursuant to employment agreements executed at closing. Mitchell E. Hersh, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mack-Cali Realty Corporation, also will assume the role of Chairman and Chief Executive of Roseland Management Services, L.P.
The Roseland transaction was financed through a combination of cash on hand and borrowings under Mack-Cali’s $600 million unsecured revolving credit facility. It included not only the massive Revere project, but also numerous other finished developments in the Northeast and 13 projects still in development – including a long-halted project on the East Boston waterfront.

Also last week, continuing their aggressive schedule as the new head of Roseland, Mack-Cali announced that it would commence construction of The Highlands at Overlook Ridge, along with another Roseland project in New Jersey.

The Highlands will be located almost entirely in Malden, and will consist of a 371-unit luxury apartment complex – a fourth piece in the Overlook Ridge Master Plan Development. The project is expected to cost $75 million and comes in partnership with UBS Global Asset Management. A construction loan commitment is led by Bank of America with participation from TD Bank.

Roseland will oversee the leasing and management of The Highlands upon completion, and will continue to lease and manage the other three Overlook Ridge properties.

On Monday, Mack-Cali hosted Gov. Deval Patrick in East Boston for a groundbreaking on it Portside at Pier One project – which has been bogged down in politics and red tape for nearly 10 years as Roseland has tried to build on the waterfront in Eastie.

This first phase of the project will contain 176 units and is expected to cost $67 million. The overall project will contain 566 luxury apartments and 70,000 sq. ft. of retail and public space.

Mack-Cali is one of the largest real estate investment trust (REIT) companies in the Northeast and has been in existence since the 1950s. It owns luxury apartment developments and commercial offices spaces all over the Northeast