The organizers of the Jamaica Plain community fridge are searching for a new location to host their project, but concerns about liability are making businesses hesitant to commit.
The original fridge was located outside of D’Friends Barbershop in Hyde Square and was destroyed in a shooting on November 6th. It had been put in place in September as a way to combat spiking food insecurity
Like other community fridges that have sprung up across the US in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the JP fridge sought to fight food insecurity through a simple concept -- those passing by its brightly painted exterior could drop off food donations if able, or take food if in need.
Josiel Gonzalez, a leading JP fridge volunteer, loved watching people peer into the fridge on their way to the nearby Whole Foods, then circle back on their way home to donate freshly purchased goods. According to Gonzalez, organizers already have a replacement refrigerator. D’Friends would be happy to host the new fridge, but Gonzalez explained that the D’Friends location was always temporary.
For two days in a row the Boston Fire Department visited the Blessed Sacrament Church to attend to falling stones from the building. On Nov. 24, the Boston Fire Department tweeted that, "Some of the beautiful coping stones have show they're aging by falling to the steps below." No injuries were caused by the falling stones. The Blessed Sacrament Church is owned by Hyde Square Task Force, which purchased it in 2014 with the intent of redeveloping it into a community center.
Celebrate Halloween with a Story Walk by taking a stroll down from Hyde Square to Jackson Square and grab a kids' activity bag with games and treats. The Story Walk can be completed at any time between October 26th and 31st. While walking you read from the children's book Just a Minute: A Trickster Tale and Counting Book by Yuyi Morales, which will be hanging in business windows from October 26th to October 31st. There will be two routes that you can follow: one starting at Jackson Square and the other from the Connolly Branch of the Boston Public Library. Both routes end at the Blessed Sacrament Plaza where there will be a photo booth set up.
A t-shirt company that prides itself on local memories is opening in the former spot of one of Jamaica Plain's favorite bygone restaurants. Local Vyntage is opening a retail store on the second floor of what was a dining area of the old Sorella's restaurant in Hyde Square. For several years the business has been operating online. "Local Vyntage is about connecting people through common, cherished memories and local icons," said Chet Winnicki, who co-owns the business with his wife Brittany. "One t-shirt we plan on making is a tribute to Sorella's.
I am writing this letter to call on the Hyde Square Task Force, elected officials, and our entire community to come together to find a solution to the future of the Blessed Sacrament Church. The announced decision that the church will be sold with no restrictions for luxury housing or some other use that won’t benefit the Latin Quarter will hurt both the future of our neighborhood and the legacy of a great organization that has done so much for the youth of our community. I was born and raised in the Dominican Republic and have lived in Jamaica Plain since 1975, raising two kids as a single mother. I have owned a business here since 1980 and participated as an active volunteer for almost 40 years in the Business Association, Main Street program, Mount Pleasant Home, Spring House, and also with the Hyde Square Task Force. My two children and three siblings were educated at Blessed Sacrament School and my children were baptized in the church, which we attended every Sunday.