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The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the royals are touring

Charles St. Amand
Crowds gather to wait for the royals’ welcome event to begin in City Hall Plaza.

Prince William and Princess Catherine landed at Logan International Airport on Nov. 30, for a round of visits with community leaders and organizations around the Boston area leading up to the Earthshot Prize on Dec. 2. 

The Royal couple kicked off their trip with a public welcome event at the new City Hall Plaza on Wednesday, with speeches from Mayor Michelle Wu, Gov.-elect Maura Healy and Prince William. Despite the rain, Boston City Hall was crowded with eager people trying to glimpse British royalty. 

“I just knew I had to see them, especially because of the cultural influence they had on me growing up,” said Suffolk University sophomore Grace Kane.

In a speech discussing the Earthshot Prize, a global environmental award, Prince William thanked the “hearty Bostonians for braving the rain this evening.” 

The Earthshot Prize, founded by the prince in 2020, was the primary reason for the royal couple’s trip to Boston. He shared why Boston had been chosen to host this bold climate initiative this year.

“Sixty years ago, President John F. Kennedy’s Moonshot speech laid down a challenge to American innovation and ingenuity. ‘We choose to go to the moon,’ he said, ‘not because it is easy but because it is hard.’ It was that Moonshot speech that inspired me to launch the Earthshot Prize with the aim of doing the same for climate change as President Kennedy did for the space race,” the Prince of Wales said. 

Morgan Coleman, a sophomore at Suffolk, said Prince William’s speech “restored hope in my future knowing that much is being done now to work towards solving this issue [climate change].”

The Prince of Wales said the second reason Boston was chosen to be the home of the Earthshot Prize was because of its vast educational centers. 

“Boston was also the obvious choice because your universities, research centers and vibrant start-up scene make you a global leader in science, innovation and boundless ambition,” said Prince William. 

Boston is a worldwide hub for higher education. With more than 250,000 students, the dynamic and pioneering environment is the differential that makes the city stand up. Kane was glad to hear that Bostonians were considered leaders in education and innovation. 

“As a college student, the fact that someone with such high importance like the Prince was willing to recognize higher education in the city meant the absolute world to me,” Kane said.

She said that was “the push” she needed to get through finals. 

Minutes before joining the Princess of Wales, Wu and Healey to light up City Hall in green, the Prince of Wales said that he and Princess Catherine were “absolutely delighted” to be in the city of Boston “as we start the countdown to the Earthshot Prize.” 

He said they were “both looking forward to spending the next few days learning about the innovative ways the people of Massachusetts are tackling climate change.”

The royal couple had a busy agenda in Boston. After the public event, they watched a Celtics game at TD Garden. They met young climate warrior Ollie Perault, 15, and the Ambassador of the John F. Kennedy Library, Caroline Kennedy

On Thursday, Prince William and Princess Catherine visited the Greentown Labs startup to learn about their climate innovations in Somerville. Then they went to Chelsea to visit Roca Inc., a non-profit organization that helps high-risk young people.

The last stop on Thursday was East Boston. The couple headed to Harborside Walk, along with Mayor Wu, to see the work of one of the finalists of last year’s Earthshot Prize. 

The Prince and Princess of Wales’ official account on social media posted, “Fantastic to see the impact the @EarthshotPrize can bring.”

“The fact that the city is a landmark for well-known individuals shows how Boston has grown as a city and community,” Kane said. 

On Friday, the last day of their trip, Princess Catherine visited The Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University. Prince William met with U.S. President Joe Biden outside the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library after a tour inside with Kennedy. 

“It is crucial to maintain the connection between the U.S. and United Kingdom, and their presence here accelerates that process,” said freshman Malvina Dimitri. 

Their evening focused on the last and main event, the Earthshot Prize, at the MGM Music Hall at Fenway. 

Boston was filled with a high amount of stardom Friday night, with celebrities ready to show off their sustainable fashion in accordance with the event’s theme. David Beckham, Billie Eilish and Rami Malek were a few of many notable people that attended the environmental event. 

Five award winners received £1 million for their innovative environmental projects that Prince William expects will help make positive environmental changes. 

In his final speech at the Earthshot Prize, Prince William said he “believes that the Earthshot solutions prove we can overcome our planet’s greatest challenges.”

“It’s my hope the Earthshot legacy will continue to grow, helping our communities and planet to thrive,” the Prince of Wales said during the event. 

The Earthshot Prize Ceremony was restricted to guests and was streamed live on Dec. 2.

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About the Contributor
Elise Coelho, Staff Writer | she/her
Elise is a sophomore from São Paulo, Brazil. She is majoring in philosophy with a minor in journalism. She loves to read, write, listen to music and take pictures. Her favorite band is Maneskin, and most of the time you can find her at a theater watching a musical. After graduation she plans to become an author and share her stories with the world.

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It’s raining, it’s pouring, the royals are touring