Jamaica Pond Reopens after Blue-Green Algae Bloom

The Boston Public Heath Commission said in a statement that recreational activities, including fishing and boating, may resume at Jamaica Pond following last month's detection of blue-green algae, which the Commission said was potentially fatal if ingested. The announcement comes after two consecutive weeks of testing showed algae concentration below the state-recommended limit of 70,000 cells/milliliter. However, residents looking for place to beat the summer heat with a cool evening swim can keep looking: Swimming has been banned in Jamaica Pond since 1975 because it serves as one of the city's backup water supplies, according to boston.com.

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Rendering of equestrian and pentathlon facilities for Franklin Park in Boston 2024's '2.0' plan

With Death of the Olympic Bid, Franklin Park Coalition Urges Community to Support the Park Renovations

A community organization that speaks for the preservation of Franklin Park has called on the community and Boston 2024 to ensure efforts to revitalize the park continue even after the death of Boston’s Olympic bid. Since Mayor Marty Walsh refused to sign the Olympic agreement that put taxpayers on the hook for cost overruns, the U.S. bid will likely go to Los Angeles, WGBH reports. In a statement released Tuesday, the Franklin Park Coalition said Boston 2024 could “repair their reputation” by working with the community to leave a legacy that “creates goodwill and greater opportunity for future park-goers.”

“The city, state, foundations and corporations who worked together on the Olympics bid should remain focused on opportunities to invest in our city,” said the Coalition in a statement, “including Franklin Park.”

By working in concert with Franklin Park-goers, Boston 2024, the Coalition said, could show that residents—not the monied elite—are the true catalyst for community investment. As the bid evolved, Franklin Park was slated for various improvements, such as better transportation to the park, re-paving, a swimming pool and renovations to White stadium, according to a statement by the Coalition. Anita Morson-Matra, who serves of the Coalition's board of directors, said that Franklin Park is unique for its size and location--its 520 acres border Mattapan, Jamaica Plain, Roxbury and Dorchester.

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Dangerousness of Algae Bloom Takes Residents By Surprise

The big neighborhood news this week has been Jamaica Pond falling into the grip of a toxic bloom of blue-green algae. Some residents, though aware the Pond is closed, say they didn't realize the seriousness of the danger. Though officials say the toxin is not known to be absorbed through the skin, the blue-green algae is potentially deadly when ingested. Signage posted in multiple languages around the pond cautions residents to refrain from contact with the contaminated water, and advises pet owners to keep dogs a safe distance from the shore. Residents should refrain from entering the pond as contact to humans can result in eye irritation, organ damage, and in extreme cases, death, according to an advisory from the Boston Public Health Commission.

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Screen grab from video of vet explaining pet first aid

MSPCA-Angell Teaches Pet Parents Life-Saving Techniques

Have you ever wondered how to give your pet lifesaving CPR? Did you know that in large enough quantities, garlic can be toxic for your cat or dog? Attendees of the JP-based MSPCA-Angell's Centennial Anniversary seminar on pet first aid learned this and more as veterinarian Kiko Bracker outlined basic lifesaving techniques pet parents can use as a first response to toxicity or injury to their furry family members. If you missed Saturday's event, check out the American Veterinary Medical Association's page for more important information on how to respond to your pet's medical needs. More information can be found at the American Red Cross.

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Still from video on Porchfest 2015.

Thousands Groove to Porchfest 2015

Music: "Nothing to Say" by Johnny Blazes and the Pretty Boys, "Otrov" by Boycott. Video credit: Amanda Burke

JP on Saturday welcomed thousands of revelers for performances of dance, theater and nearly 120 bands during the neighborhood's second annual Porchfest.

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