Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Greetings, Lynn Election Complete, Music Theatre Rumors, North Shore Alliance, Green Note, and High School Football


Happy Thanksgiving Holiday Greetings

As we get ready to celebrate one of the most American of all Holidays tomorrow, all of us at Essex Heritage want to offer our best wishes for a Happy Holiday to all. On behalf of the staff, our Executive Director Annie Harris and I and our senior partner in this work, the National Park Service, Essex Heritage has much to be thankful for in November 2009. Over the past dozen years we have developed a number of wonderful and fruitful partnerships with dozens of highly committed not-for- profit community based organizations and the leadership of thirty-four communities in this region. This includes not just the local leadership of those communities, but also the regionally elected officials that work so diligently for this region on Beacon Hill. Together this consortium has made wonderful progress in organizing regional initiatives that have benefited the entire region. We have truly learned that so much more can be accomplished be working together towards common goals than can ever be done working separately. We pledge to continue to organize programs and associations in the region that provide lasting benefits to all of residents of the region. All of our efforts as we continue this work will be to insure that all who want to participate in the mission of Essex Heritage will have a seat at our table, Essex Heritage continues to develop long tern relationships across the region as we work on scenic byways, bicycle trails, educational initiatives and programs for our “friends” group the Essex Heritage Explorers. We certainly hope that the holiday will be a pleasant one for all of our friends and contemporaries, and we look forward to continuing to work together to make the region we all call home a better place to live and work in the future.

Lynn Mayoral Recount Complete

We want to offer Essex Heritage’s belated congratulations to the recently elected Mayor of the City of Lynn. Mayor elect and former ten year City Councilor Judith Flanagan Kennedy was recently confirmed as Mayor of the City of Lynn after a recount of the voting earlier this month confirmed that she has won the election. Essex Heritage is pleased to welcome her to the group of municipal officials in the region, and look forward to working with her as she establishes a new administration in the City of Lynn. Her experience in the city as a five term city councilor should be an advantage to her as she begins her work for the City in this new capacity. The city is most important to the work of Essex Heritage as its location is at the southern gateway of the region and its population at almost 90,000 residents remains the largest community if the region. We also want to take the opportunity to thank, former Mayor Edward “Chip” Clancy for his years of service to the region first as a senator and then as the mayor of the City of Lynn. We were privileged to work with him in both of his capacities over the last dozen years.

Rumored Reopening of Theater in Beverly Good News

Recently, several media sources indicated that a deal may be announced soon that would herald the re-opening of the now closed North Shore Music Theatre. That news if correct work be good news for the arts community in this region, as the old theatre before its closing was the center of much of the arts activity in this region. The current news indicated that interests the own and operate a similar facility in Rhode Island is close to an agreement with the bank that currently owns the Beverly facility, and would hope to see the theatre opened again for business as early as the spring of 2009. That would be good news for the region as a whole and for the art community specifically.

North Shore Alliance for Economic Development Offers a Position

Several months ago, the North Shore Alliance for Economic Development was created by a group of interested North Shore business and regional leaders. The Alliance was begun and is hosed at Salem State College and is headed by Mr. William Luster, a former Salem and Boston municipal official and has about 125 participants from business, governments and not-for-profit organizations, including the Essex National Heritage Commission. The organization has as its goal the economic revitalization of the region. The organizations that has previously recommended the expediting of regional transportation projects, recently weighed in on the gaming issue that may be before the Massachusetts legislature. The group without providing support for or against gaming presumed that if there were gaming legislation passed that there may be some kind of operation at Suffolk Downs and that would require more improvements for roads in that area that leads in and out of the North Shore. The organization proposed that some portion of any future state revenues from expanding gambling activities be set aside in a fund that would assist regional municipalities in paying for the design costs of such road improvement projects. At present, municipalities are required to pay for the design costs of such improvements. The alliance also weighed in on any opportunities for new jobs that might come out of any new gambling facility and urged the local people from the North Shore be considered for these opportunities.

One Green Note

Essex Heritage continues to pay particular attention to projects that will have an effect on the “greening” of the region. One such project is a wind turbine project in Newbury. The Town is seeking grant money to conduct a feasibility study to determine the best possible location for a wind turbine in Town. There are several sites in Town under consideration, and this seems to be a most worthwhile project to study.

Thanksgiving Day Football

In this region on Thanksgiving there a number of traditional high school football games and we wish all of the participant’s good sports, good health and good conduct. The weather this season looks like it will be reasonable and big holiday crowds are expected across the region. Just considering the public schools rivalries, there are traditional games between; Salem and Beverly, Swampscott and Marblehead, Danvers and Gloucester, Lynn Classical and Lynn English, Peabody and Saugus, North Andover and Masconomet, Pentucket and Triton, Amesbury and Newburyport, Hamilton/Wenham and Ipswich, Manchester-by-the-Sea and Georgetown. We wish all of the players, coaches, bands and cheerleaders well.

Essex Heritage Office Closed on Friday, November 27, 2009

Since our office will be closed on Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, I do not intend to publish a post on Essex Happenings that day. See you all on Monday.

As always we value your comments, questions and observations about the work of Essex Heritage. Please contact me with your thoughts at Thanks. Tom Leonard

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