Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Holiday Weekend, Essex Heritage Membership Update, and Newburyport Seeking Designation



All of us were particularly blessed this past weekend with perfect New England fall weather for the Columbus Day Holiday. This is one of those unusual Holidays when some have the Holiday off from work, and others like the retail sector are busy at work on Monday. For those that had the day free the long weekend ended on Monday, and for the most part, it was just like the first two days with pleasant days, cool evenings and lots of sunshine. I spent the first part of the long weekend on Cape Cod where the wind was very strong, but the pleasant temperatures drew big crowds over the bridge to that part of the Massachusetts coast. The cape this weekend was crowded and there were a number of craft fairs like the Seaside Festival in Yarmouth and other attractions to keep the crowds active and helping to keep that local economy booming.

I headed back to Essex County early by way of a soccer tournament in Natick that drew an amazing 650 youth teams including two teams from Northborough that included a couple of Leonard Grandchildren. On Monday morning I attended a Danvers High School Field Hockey game where another granddaughter participated and added a goal in a 3-1 win over neighboring Peabody bringing the Danvers Varsity record to a positive position.

After that game my wife and I made a brief visit to Salem to pick up some material in my office and explored a bit on Essex Street with big crowds already in Salem before noon to share in that communities famous Haunted Happenings event. On the way back to Danvers we could already see the traffic heading up to Topsfield for the final day of the Topsfield Fair in that community. Speaking of the Fair, I hope that the pleasant weather on the first and last weekends led to a financially successful event. It appears that at least most of the days were reasonable and that should mean good crowds. My wife and I made a visit to the Fair on a cool and damp Wednesday evening, and even though the weather was not great; we enjoyed the exhibits of flowers and crafts that were under cover. We also took in one of the performances of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and their Musical Ride. The Mounties and their equestrian partners put on a wonderful performance that is both athletic and precise. The Mounties only appear in Topsfield every other year but their performances are a highlight of the fair.

Essex Heritage Membership Program Update

On the Friday before the long Holiday Weekend, Essex Heritage offered a members only event at the Green Meadows Farm in Hamilton that was a great success. The visit was arranged on a most pleasant day, and a tour of the farm and a picnic lunch were provided. Essex Heritage members were exposed to a one-hour tour of the farm that is a certified organic farm operating right here in Essex County. The day was most informative and those members that attended learned a great deal about modern farming methods. Essex Heritage will be offering more programs like this in the future and keep in touch with planning by visiting www.essexheritage.org often,

During the last week the Development Committee efforts have produced another Essex Heritage business member. We are truly pleased to announce that the Georgetown Savings Bank a Federally Chartered Bank founded in 1868 with branches in Georgetown, North Andover and Newbury has agreed to become a business member. We are most appreciative of their support. In the next week or so we have several additional appointments with Essex County businesses and expect to continue to add to the list of business members in the next several weeks.

Newburyport Seeks to be Named the Birthplace of the Coast Guard

A week or so ago, we reported on a stop that we made to the Coast Guard base on the Merrimack River in Newburyport. That visit was offered as part of the 2010 Essex Heritage Trails and Sails event. It was a most informative visit and we were particularly impressed with the work being done to save lives and protect maritime property from that location We are now very happy to learn that the leadership of the City of Newburyport has embarked on an effort to secure a designation for that community as the Birthplace of the Coast Guard. The claim and it seems most worthy is based on the launching of the curter Massachusetts from Newburyport in 1791. That cutter was the first such vessel to enter active service for the US Revenue Cutter Service which later became the Coast Guard. Essex Heritage is pleased to support to this effort in any way than we can. The community of Newburyport has long been one of our most active partners for the last decade and those efforts to seek this designation are to be lauded and we applaud those efforts. Similar to Salem that recently received notification that they are noted as the birthplace of the National Guard, this designation if awarded will only add to the prestige and heritage of this region.

Slightly Truncated Version of Essex Happenings Offered

With the Holiday falling on a Monday as it did, it has been a little difficult to get this posting out on time and with reasonable content. Finishing this work without having access to Essex Heritage staff and regular office hours has caused me to offer a “slightly” truncated version for today. We will return to regular length postings on Friday of this week after the visit of the Alliance of National Heritage Area’s to this region.

As always we value your comments, questions and observations about the work of Essex Heritage. Please contact me with your thoughts or any questions you may have at www.essexheritage.org. We are always striving to make Essex Heritage work as effectively as possible and your input and suggestions are always welcome. We can always provide more information and better communication, and one of the goals of these postings on Essex happenings is to provide that opportunity. Thank You. Tom Leonard

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