Jamaica Plain's Sandy Gonzales recently participated in the Columbia Threadneedle Boston Triathlon while raising funds for Team BMC. Gonzales is one of 89 members of Team BMC all raising money for Boston Medical Center's Vision 2030, which is a new initiative to make Boston the healthiest urban population in the world through better medical care, eating habits and addiction treatment. Gonzales answered questions from Jamaica Plain News about her work at Boston Medical Center, training for her first triathlon, and what she'll be thinking about while she's running/swimming/biking. Q: What made you want to help people with substance use disorders? Gonzales: I am empathetic by nature and I was also raised to value the importance of helping people and making a positive impact in my community.
A new preschool opening this fall basing itself in the Arnold Arboretum is aiming to be the first licensed outdoor preschool in Boston. That's right -- the arboretum will be the students' classroom! "The best part about spending time in nature is that you never know what you'll find; at many schools all the lessons are pre-planned by the teacher, but in nature there's that sense of wonder when you see something unexpected or amazing," said Sarah Besse, co-founder of the Boston Outdoor Preschool Network (BOPN). "In nature, the teachers' role is not to 'deliver' pre-planned lessons, but rather to learn and explore with the children. Us teachers will follow the children's own interests, and help them how to go about finding answers to their own questions."
When news broke the other day that Chase Bank would be taking over one of the most prominent and vacant commercial spots on Centre Street, groans of disappointment echoed through Jamaica Plain. To be clear, this isn't about Chase Bank taking over the old Bukhara restaurant storefront at 701 Centre St. This is about any bank taking up residence on the main drag of Centre Street from the Monument to Hyde Square. There are too many banks in that stretch. Chase Bank will be the fifth bank within 100 yards of that section of Centre Street.
A new bank branch will fill a prime vacant commercial spot on Centre Street that already has four banks within 100 yards of its location. A JP Morgan Chase employee confirmed to Jamaica Plain News that Chase will be opening a branch at 701 Centre Street by the end of October. Chase will be going into the old Bukhara restaurant location, which moved from its longtime Centre Street location on April 1, 2019, to a new location in Forest Hills. Chase Bank will certainly not be filling a void of financial institutions on Centre Street. There are already four banks within 100 yards of Chase's new branch -- a Bank of America at 677 Centre St., Eastern Bank at 687 Centre St., Citizens Bank at 696 Centre St., and Rockland Trust at 725 Centre St.
Everyone is welcome to join Mayor Marty Walsh in celebrating National Night Out in Jamaica Plain on August 5. Mayor Walsh will be joined by Boston Police Commissioner William Gross, BPD Command Staff -- and there will be free kids activities, food, entertainment, as well awards for Boston's crime watch groups. This is a free event being held at the South Street Apartments (125 South St., Metcalf Court Parking Lot) on Monday, August 5 from 4 to 8 pm. National Night Out started in 1984 by bringing civic groups, community organizations, police, residents and more together. More than 2.5 million people participated in the first National Night Out. Now more than 38 million participate annually.