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For Near West Side kids, Syracuse’s Skiddy Park is for softball, love

By Samantha House | shouse@syracuse.com SYRACUSE, N.Y. – To Yanira Johnson, Syracuse’s Near West Side has always been one big, extended family. She said it is a family that lovingly gets involved in each other’s business – a family that wants to give its youngest members a safe place to live. That’s what Johnson, a 17[…]

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Near Westside Initiative: Father’s Day violence at odds with neighborhood’s rise

An open letter to the Greater Syracuse Community: The violence that took place at 11 p.m. Father’s Day on Otisco and Tioga streets in the Near Westside is a tragedy for those directly impacted, those who witnessed it, the city of Syracuse and particularly for the residents who have been working to make their neighborhood[…]

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New faces join the NWSI Board of Directors

The Near Westside Initiative’s board of directors had to say goodbye to several talented and passionate board members this year. Bea Gonzalez, Leah Tucker, Kevin McAuliffe and Mary Alice Smothers all ended their terms with the NWSI after several years of hard work that helped get the NWSI off the ground. Fortunately, thanks to the[…]

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Near Westside Peacemaking Center Opens at 601 Tully

The Near Westside Peacemaking Center celebrated its grand opening at 601 Tully earlier this month. The space will serve as a permanent location for the Near Westside Peacemaking Project, a community conflict resolution program organized by the Center for Court Innovation in Syracuse. Peacemaking is a traditional Native American approach to justice that focuses on[…]