The Neponset River is the heart of an eco-system that covers nearly all of the territory that was once called Mattapan. (Now don’t let a few facts get in the way. We’ll reserve the history of Mattapan’s geographic scope for another day. For now, focus.) Much like its closest sister, the Aboutsett, the Neponset River has been exploited far more than it has been appreciated.
From the time Israel Stoughton first dammed it to hydro-power a variety of mills along its banks, the Neponset River has borne the environmental brunt of the Industrial Revolution–a legacy that we live alongside today. And while the once abandoned mills are being reclaimed for economic development, its waters remain contaminated today.
So Mattapan Cultural Arts Development (MCAD) launched its Neponset River Arts Festival last June to both call attention to the critical relationship between the river’s health and that of our community, and to celebrate the long-awaited Mattapan segment of the Neponset River Greenway.
The Mattapan Arts Council (M.A.C.) was inspired to do the same when it embraced the Neponset River as an under-appreciated cultural asset that few associate with Mattapan. In short order, the M.A.C. announced it would underwrite the first Neponset River Artists Competition.
The winners of the Neponset River Artists Competition will be announced in September, 2018. In the interim, we’ll be hosting eco-location challenges and art demonstrations on the Neponset River Greenway throughout the year. Join us.