New Organization Producing 7th Annual Jamaica Plain Porchfest

Jamaica Plain Porchfest's co-founders Mindy Fried and Marie Ghitman, are thrilled that one of JP's favorite annual event is being handed over, with love and gratitude, to the artists and art-managers from Dunamis, a Boston-based nonprofit organization. JP Porchfest is a vibrant music and arts festival that takes place on porches, patios, stoops, driveways, church and community center yards, and all over the neighborhood. The mission of the daylong event is to bridge the divides of race, class, culture and immigrant status through the power of the arts. There are performers of all kinds: music, dance, theater, spoken word, storytelling, circus arts, and comedy. JP Porchfest has had a long-standing collaboration with Dunamis, originating with the organization’s Executive Director, J. Cottle, serving as Porchfest’s Volunteer Coordinator for two years before curating a Dunamis Porch for an additional two years.


New ‘Shape of Care’ Podcast Explores Caregiving

A Jamaica Plain resident's new podcast is exploring the perspectives caregiving -- and the numerous forms it takes. The Shape of Care:  A Podcast About Caregiving is a 6-episode series created by Jamaica Plain's Mindy Fried and was released on Oct. 22. The podcast "...explores the perspectives of informal caregivers and paid care workers, creators of innovative programs and care activists who are organizing nationally to mobilize care workers and implement a progressive national care agenda." The podcast will examine topics including:

Caring for a romantic partner who has Parkinson's Disease
Caring for a loved one with Alzheimer's disease
The link between the quality of care jobs and the quality of care provided
Homophobia in elder care
The need for comprehensive caregiving policies in the U.S.

The Shape of Care podcast features interviews with Ai-Jen Poo, director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance and Sarita Gupta, who co-directs Caring Across Generations with Ai-jen; Rick Surpin, Founder of Cooperative Home Care Associates in New York City; and former CEO of Ethos in Boston who created the first LGBT Aging Project in the U.S.

The podcast is available on Apple and Stitcher.

Kiki D reaches out to a fan as she performs at the River of Life Church stage at JP Porchfest, Saturday, July 9, 2016.

180 Bands, Dancers, Storytellers, Comedians & More Performing at JP Porchfest on July 13

Pretty much, you will barely be able to move in Jamaica Plain this weekend without seeing a JP Porchfest performance! This is the 6th Annual Jamaica Plain Porchfest, and it has never been more popular or robust: 180 bands, and artistic groups -- theater, dance, spoke word, storytelling, and comedy -- will perform on 97 porches. "JP Porchfest is almost like 100 little mini-festivals! And people have repeatedly told us that as they walk or bike around, they feel so much joy percolating in the air!" said Marie Ghitman, who co-founded the festival with Mindy Fried.


Video: ‘Thriller’ Flash Mob with Boston Symphony Orchestra & Pops in Jamaica Plain

This Halloween in Jamaica Plain wasn't just costumed kids going from house-to-house asking for candy. This year, professional musicians and dancers made their way across JP creating flash mobs in an homage to Michael Jackson's "Thriller." Jamaica Plain's Hoopla Productions collaborated with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Boston Pops to produce several flash mobs for Halloween outside of Symphony Hall and in various locations in Jamaica Plain, said Hoopla's Mindy Fried to Jamaica Plain News. Hoopla Productions also organizes the popular Jamaica Plain Porchfest. Ali Pierre-Etienne choreographed the dancing, which was accompanied by the professional musicians, who also got into the zombie performance with makeup and some dance moves.


Sociologists for Women in Society Name JP’s Fried as Feminist Activism Award Winner

The Sociologists for Women in Society Feminist Activism Award is presented annually to a member who has notably and consistently used sociology to improve conditions for women in society. The 2018 Feminist Activism Award Winner is Jamaica Plain's Mindy Fried. The following is from the Sociologists for Women in Society:

The award honors outstanding feminist advocacy efforts that embody the goal of service to women and that have identifiably improved women’s lives. Fried, M.S.W., Ph.D. is an applied sociologist with over 25 years of experience conducting research, teaching, and policy analysis on work and organizational issues. As Co-Principal of Arbor Consulting Partners, Mindy works collaboratively with nonprofit organizations and foundations to help them build their capacity and strengthen their programs and policies.


JP Porchfest is July 7th: Get Ready for 170 Performances on 90 Porches!

The 5th Annual Jamaica Plain Porchfest this Saturday will be more awesome than the previous four as it will include music, theater, dance, spoken word, storytelling, comedy, circus arts and a politicians' porch. "We have 90 generous porch hosts this year – that is, folks who offer their porches to performers. In some cases, people perform on their own porches, but they often welcome others," said Mindy Fried, co-organizer with Marie Ghitman and Eli Pabon. "And in many cases, porch hosts simply offer their porches to whomever we assign to their porches, of course taking into consideration their available space, and if they have any special requests." Click on the map of porches to see a description of all of the performances (courtesy JP Porchfest).


Q&A: JP’s Mindy Fried’s Starting Podcast to Complement Memoir About Caregiving

Jamaica Plain resident Mindy Fried's book "Caring for Red: A Daughter's Memoir" has led her to creating a podcast to discuss her caregiving experiences. Fried answered questions from Jamaica Plain News about the book, the podcast and more. Q:  You've been touring with your book "Caring for Red: A Daughter's Memoir" for more than a year. Where has the tour taken you? Fried: Yes, indeed, I’ve been traveling all over the country, giving talks and facilitating conversations about caregiving.


Local JP Author Mindy Fried Presenting at Boston Book Festival About Memoir

Local Jamaica Plain author Mindy Fried will be speaking about her book, "Caring for Red: A Daughter’s Memoir," at the Boston Book Festival on Oct. 28th. Fried is participating in a "Readings: Memoir" session along with authors Jessica Berger Gross and Tova Mirvis from 2:30 to 3:15 pm. Christine Mastrangelo is host for the session. Fried is a sociologist who writes "thoughtfully and compassionately about serving as her elderly father’s long-distance caregiver in her memoir 'Caring for Red,' which tells her father’s colorful life story and also offers fellow caregivers strength and practical advice." Click here for a full schedule of the Boston Book Festival from Oct.

Panel discussion among JP authors at the Connolly Branch Library on Monday, July 17, 2017. From left: Katie Bayerl, Mindy Fried, Beth Castrodale and Katie Eelman

JP Authors Share Their Tips for Getting Into Print

Patience, a willingness to learn, and the ability to revise one’s work extensively: those are just a few of the qualities that were essential to the success of three Jamaica Plain authors who took part in a panel discussion on book writing and publishing Monday evening. The discussion, held at the Connolly Branch of the Boston Public Library, was moderated by Katie Eelman, director of media and events at Papercuts JP and co-founder and editor-in-chief at Cutlass Press, an independent book publisher based out of Papercuts. The story of her blacklisted father

As the panelists noted, it can take years to get from the idea stage to a polished, edited book. “You can’t be impatient because it takes forever and a day,” said Mindy Fried, author of Caring for Red: A Daughter’s Memoir. Fried said that her book began as blog posts about her elderly father’s experiences in assisted living and evolved into a memoir about her role in his care giving, one that offers a sociological perspective on the subject.