Resurrecting Holy Land

After a murder, Waterbury begins to rebuild is abandoned Catholic theme park

A cross stands in the center of Waterbury, Connecticut. It’s atop Pine Hill, wedged between I-84 and Route 8, and inside Holy Land USA, a shuttered Catholic theme park. Most Saturdays and Sundays, you can find Bill Fitzpatrick below the cross, clearing brush from the path between “Jerusalem” and “Bethlehem Village,” clusters of biblical replicas made of plywood and stainless steel. Chuck Pagano, the President of Holy Land’s Board of Directors, will glimpse the cross as he flies out of Bradley Airport to catch a. . . Read more
Antonia Ayres-Brown
The Week After

New Haven communities react to Donald Trump’s election

On Election Day, New Haven was on the wrong side of a historic upset. Over thirty-four thousand Elm City voters cast ballots for Hillary Clinton; just under five thousand chose president-elect Donald J. Trump. After the race was over—settled in far-away places like southwest Virginia and Kenosha County, Wisconsin—the result dominated conversations all over the city, sparking endless debates about its significance and what to expect from a Trump presidency. The following vignettes are not meant to offer a comprehensive portrait of New Haven residents’. . . Read more
Various Authors
Trump et Veritas

The GOP’s existential crisis comes to campus.

A dozen or so Yale students, all men, stared at a television tuned to CBS. They had packed into the common room of sophomore Michael Fitzgerald’s Silliman suite to watch the first debate of the first presidential election in which they are old enough to vote. The men lean right, politically, but they had officially disavowed the Republican candidate on stage: Donald J. Trump. Trump was the reason they were all in Fitzgerald’s suite, instead of at the Yale College Republicans’ watch party in Linsly-Chittenden. . . Read more
Isabelle Taft
The Countdown

There’s a ritual every Sunday afternoon on the New Haven Green. For the past nine years, rain or shine, volunteers have set up a small altar behind Trinity Church on the Green, complete with an altar cloth, communion chalice, and Bible. They unfold a dozen wooden chairs. A self-appointed drummer sits down, flips over a … Continue reading The Countdown

There’s a ritual every Sunday afternoon on the New Haven Green. For the past nine years, rain or shine, volunteers have set up a small altar behind Trinity Church on the Green, complete with an altar cloth, communion chalice, and Bible. They unfold a dozen wooden chairs. A self-appointed drummer sits down, flips over a plastic container, begins playing a beat, and a congregation of homeless people arrives for the Chapel on the Green. On a cold afternoon at the end of September, the oldest. . . Read more
Eliza Fawcett
The Edge of Sisterhood

Two Yale sororities reckon with a tradition of exclusivity

Mikayla Harris never thought of herself as a typical sorority girl. Like many women who become involved with sororities at Yale, she was attracted to the University in part because Greek organizations don’t dominate the social life. But sometime around the end of her first semester, after attending first classes, going to first keggers, and making first friends, she began to wonder if something was missing. Like hundreds of other women at Yale seeking community, female friendship, and extracurricular and professional opportunities, Harris decided to. . . Read more
Fiona Lowenstein
Tlaxcala Dreams of New Haven

On stage, mothers find a hole in the border to visit their migrant children.

David Mendieta leans over the railing at John F. Kennedy International Airport, holding his baby boy and glancing often at the arrivals board with heavy eyelids. A 25-year-old contractor, Mendieta woke up his wife and son before dawn for the two-hour drive from their house in West Haven to pick up his mother at the terminal. His son bats a “Welcome Home” balloon. Tired families trickle into the lobby, all waiting for their mothers to arrive from Mexico. Anxiety mounts as light spills through the. . . Read more
Sebi Medina-Tayac
Checking into Limbo

How a real estate developer and government regulators failed hundreds of low-income families in New Haven.

Ramon DeJesus, a former tenant of Church Street South. From above, the Church Street South complex looks like a yard of stray train cars. Each of the nineteen buildings is a squat, concrete rectangle coated in a layer of yellow-beige paint. It could be the site of a massive derailment. Evidence of human occupancy catches the eye: a blue bike on a second floor balcony, a towel hanging from a window. One basketball hoop. Amy Marx observes the apartment complex from the eighth floor of. . . Read more
Elena Saavedra Buckley
The Signal’s Back In Town

A new radio station wants to localize New Haven’s airwaves.

Halfway through a show on New Haven’s new local radio station, Onyeka Obiocha is talking about rural Tanzanian villages. But, as is standard on WNHH, the conversation loops back to the city. Obiocha’s warm, tenor voice describes how the beans make their way to his downtown coffee shop, The Happiness Lab. Shafiq Abdussabur, the host of Urban Talk Radio, asks him about the ins and outs of the business in a voice that can command a room. Adbussabur takes measured, attention-grabbing pauses between sentences as. . . Read more
Elena Saavedra Buckley
What’s Left Behind

The Mexican town of Tetlanohcan grapples with New Haven’s influence.

“Get in, guero [white boy], it’s cold out here,” said Daniel Mendieta, naked in the mountain air. He leaned out of the temazcal built at the edge of the cornfield. The sweat lodge, bathed in crisp moonlight, had been in the family’s backyard for generations—it was the site of their monthly purification steam baths. I undressed, placed my clothes on a dusty wooden chair, and crawled into the candlelit opening. Inside, Daniel threw a shallow bowl of water into the black hole of an antechamber. . . Read more
Sebi Medina-Tayac
Of A Certain Age

The culture of fake IDs at Yale.

Nora is anxiously awaiting a package. She is lying on her bed in her suite when she finally gets the USPS delivery notice on her iPhone. After class that afternoon, she picks up a bulky envelope from the Yale post office. Two of her friends are already waiting for her back in the suite. They eye the package impatiently. “Moment of truth,” one of them says. Nora rips open the pouch and removes a small, lilac box tied with pale purple ribbon. She flips off. . . Read more
Spencer Bokat-Lindell