June 13, 2017
ITEM PHOTO BY OWEN O’ROURKE
Amya Conn checks out the chess set in front of Revere City Hall.
By MATT DEMIRS
REVERE — A royal family moved to the city on Monday.
The king and queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights, and eight pawns now live on the sidewalk outside City Hall, waiting for someone to make their next move.
The Revere Recreation Department opened an outdoor chess and checkers for residents to play for the summer.
The pop-up park meets a pair of the city’s goals, according to Joseph Gravellese, a spokesman for Mayor Brian M. Arrigo
“Our first goal is to create vibrant public spaces for the community,” he said. “It is a unique use of unused space. Nobody really walks behind the monument so we wanted to do something with it.”
The second goal, Gravallese said, was to give Revere residents something to do.
He said the games are just the beginning of creating these kind of spaces. The library plans to open a small branch at the pop-up station where people can read books and magazines. They are also looking to create a chess club to not only answer student interest, but to educate and involve others and use the space.
After admitting he was the first person to lose a game, Gravellese said the feedback has been positive on the board game. He saw three different games being played in the first few hours.
The chess and checkers pieces, filled partly with sand, weigh about 20 pounds. The weight will make it more difficult for anyone thinking of stealing them.
Gravellese said Revere is planning to create more of these pop-up park stations throughout the city to transform dead space into vibrant attractions for people to get outside.
Matt Demirs can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.