By Squirrel Staff

The first thing you notice when you walk through the front doors of Catherine McAuley High School is a giant bulletin board emblazoned with WOW! The board, which is updated regularly, highlights the achievements of individual McAuley students. On the day this reporter visited the school, the list of accomplishments was impressive. One student had recently been chosen as a National Merit Scholar finalist. Another had spent the summer doing volunteer work in China. A third had signed a letter of intent to play basketball for a prestigious university. Three more had been selected for the prestigious District 2 Chorus Festival. Looking at the students celebrated on the WOW! board, and at the others gathered nearby to study and quietly socialize after a long day of classes, it would be hard to guess that the school is in the midst of one of the most significant transitions in its history. On July 1, after a nearly six decade-long affiliation with the Sisters of Mercy, McAuley will formally cut its ties with the Sisters and with the Roman Catholic Church. Continue reading MCAULEY LOOKS TO THE FUTURE WITHOUT THE SISTERS OF MERCY


By Squirrel Staff

Deering Center Resident Takes Cultural Mission to Cuba

Lao Tzu once said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” In the case of Deering Center resident Eve Sawyer’s recent trip to Cuba, it might be more accurate to say that the journey began with a single Cha Cha.

Art students at the José Joaquín Tejada School of Art in Santiago de Cuba
Art students at the José Joaquín Tejada School of Art in Santiago de Cuba, photo courtesy of Art Brings Connection



By Squirrel Staff

“The more we can do to encourage people to make a meal a social, family or communal event, the better.” That’s Chef Bryan Dame of Rosemont Market & Bakery on a recent Friday night in the Rosemont Kitchen at 559 Brighton Avenue. The occasion is the opening of the Rosemont Cooking School and launch of the Pasta 101 series of evening cooking classes. For this first class, nineteen students of diverse ages and cooking experience are gathered around a giant butcher block table adorned with the ingredients (semolina flour, local eggs, olive oil, water, fresh basil, chives, corn meal) and the tools that will demystify the process of making fresh pasta. Continue reading ROSEMONT OPENS A COOKING SCHOOL


The following is a letter from Don Drake, Pastor of the Deering Center Community Church. Pastor Don is writing to inform community members of the current situation with the building and grounds.

Dear Deering Community,

I am writing to inform you folks of current events at the Deering Center Community Church. I apologize that it has taken this long to let the community know what is going on; we have been going through a flurry of events. Continue reading DEERING CENTER COMMUNITY CHURCH BUILDING CRISIS


By Michele Praught

Remaine photoLike many of us lucky enough to live in one of Deering Center’ s old wooden homes, I constantly come up against what is known in the real estate parlance as “character.” Old double hung windows, plaster walls, creaky hardwood floors, and cranky cast iron radiators create a relationship with your home that is both personal and complicated. Over 50% of the homes in the area were built before 1940 when oil was cheap, yards were big, and families were even bigger. In my house, built in 1905, the creaking hardwood floors assure the tenants downstairs that I still have a job and warn the dog I’m ready for his morning constitutional. And while it’s true there are some nights when the wind rattles the old original windows enough to question their usefulness, I never find myself dreaming about a snug condo on The Hill. I wouldn’t trade the peeling paint and uneven porch rails for soulless drywall and Italian tile. Not me. When I look at a photo of my house from 1924 during the height of the Deering Center building boom I feel a connection to the 92 years of history that occurred at one house, on one street, in one neighborhood. This is what I call small history and Deering is full of it. Continue reading SMALL HISTORY


By Evie Ford

On January 10 the world sat in collective shock and sadness as we heard of David Bowie’s death. Only two days after his 69th birthday the pop and rock icon passed away from the cancer that he had been struggling with for 18 months. From his first album (David Bowie) to his last (Blackstar), Bowie has been influencing new and old musicians for decades. His music has touched us all, fan or not, in someway, and even after his passing, he is still with us. Continue reading STARMAN


By Mary Anne Wallace

This column is brought to you by the Friends of Evergreen and presents photos and stories of former Deering Center residents who are interred in Evergreen Cemetery.


The Benson red granite gravestone captures attention as it is surrounded by white and gray monuments. It also has another attention grabber: an open death date. An unknown death date raises questions: Did the person move and is buried somewhere else? Was there no one in the family who could afford the cost to engraved the date? Or was adding the date just not important to the survivors? Or possibly there were no survivors. Continue reading EVERGREEN’S DEERING NEIGHBORS