Saturday, December 10, 2011

Essex Happenings 12.10.11


The Following Health Tip Was Provided By North Shore Elder Services
CDC’s Winter Weather Health & Safety Update.
Cool Tip of the Week: Stay Warm This Winter - Shivering is an important first sign that the body is losing heat. Keep warm by dressing in wool, silk, or polypropylene inner layers – these fabrics hold in more body heat than cotton. Learn more. >>
For more information on Winter Weather safety, see CDC's site for Emergency Preparedness & Response.

North Shore Economic Alliance Funding
This regional coalition that is supported by local colleges and Universities, business interests, chambers and Essex Heritage has received a wonderful $90,000 grant from the Commonwealth, The organization will use the funding in their efforts to build job programs and to foster economic vitality in the region.

The Following material was excerpted from the Agricultural Newsletter we contribute our efforts towards. We have always been very attentive to these efforts, as the preservation of the natural resources of this region is most dependant on the health of local farms.
Christmas Tree Farms

Find a Christmas tree farm near you! Choose from Pick-Your-Own or a pre-cut tree. You may also find sleigh rides, hayrides or wagon rides. Click here to find a nearby tree farm.


The poinsettia's main attraction is its red leaves, not its small yellow flower. While red is the most popular color, poinsettias also come in white, pink, cream and multi-colored. The plant is native to southern Mexico where it grows to 12 feet tall and the leaves measure to 6-8 inches across.

SL-HAY Rides and Wreath-Making Party at Marini Farm

Marini Farm in Ipswich will offer Sleigh Rides to Meet Santa on Saturday, December 3rd from 12 - 4 pm and Sunday, December 4th from 2 - 4 pm. The sleigh rides will operate from 10 am to dark other than to meet Santa. There will also be holiday storytelling and cookies and crafts. On Saturday, December 3rd from 7-9pm, you can make your own wreath at the Wreath-Making Party. The cost is $20 which includes the wreath, pinecones, other decorations and ribbon. Please register for this event.

Gingerbread House Workshops at Verrill Farm & Smolak Farms

Come to Verrill Farm in Concord on Sunday, December 4th and Saturday, December 10th to make your own gingerbread house. The times are 9:30 & 11:30 am and 1:30 pm. The cost is $35 and reservations are required - please call 978-369-4494.
Come to Smolak Farms in North Andover to make your own gingerbread house on Saturday, December 17th from 10 am to 12 pm. The cost is $40 and registration is required - please call 978-682-6332.
Both farms offer the supplies - an assembled, undecorated gingerbread house, frosting and candy. Chefs and bakers will be available to help you with ideas.

Christmas Tree Pull by the Newfoundland Dog Club at Smolak Farms

Newfoundland dogs, often termed the "Gentle Giants", will be at Smolak Farms to pull Christmas trees out of the woods, assist families by taking the trees to their car, pose for pictures, and they will even be offering rides for the little ones! The event will take place on Sunday, December 11th from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. Come and let the dogs help YOU! Donations will be accepted.

Winter Farmers' Markets Increase

The number of farmers' markets in the Northeast Harvest region has increased from 67 to 78. Markets are extending their seasons to accommodate year-round local demand. Many of you have asked for a listing of our WINTER farmers' markets. Please click here.

The Carrot Project Deadline

The Carrot Project is once again offering loans of $35,000 or less to Massachusetts farmers. The winter deadline is January 6, 2012 with an additional deadline on March 2, 2012. For further information, contact Benneth Phelps, Program Coordinator of The Carrot Project at 413-650-6151 or email

We Want to Hear From YOU!

CONSUMERS - Tell us your interests.
FARMERS - Let us know what's happening at your farm. We will try to publish your events in our newsletters.
Please add as a reciprocal link on your farm website. THANK YOU!
Click here to contact us.
This newsletter is presented in partnership by:

CITY of Salem Gains Financial Windfall from Halloween Holiday

The city of Salem recently released financial results from the 2001 event and for the second year in a row revenues to the City have substantially matched the results from the previous year/ It is very clear that the crowds that arrive in Salem for most of the month of October can be difficult to handle at times, and in some cases disadvantage some local residents, but the holiday is paying its way, and in these difficult financial times that is most positive, The events of October certainly shines a spotlight on the community, and in the long run helps keep the retail establishments in that community in business from year to year. Keeping that segment of the community healthy and paying their taxes is an important element of managing a municipality that is not now nor ever have been confidently connected to the regional highway system, and is not blessed with reasonable shopping weather for a good portion of the year, The plans to deal with the crowds that arrive each year seem well designed, and works for most in the community

Essex Heritage Annual Appeal

At the present time, Essex Heritage is conducting its annual effort to garner support for their work. ENHC developed a mailing to accompany the request, and the piece covered many of the year’s accomplishments. For those of you who might not have seen that listing, It follows here for your review, The list is long and demonstrates the commitment to the region by ENHC.

Essex Heritage demonstrates significant impact. . .
• Awarding 374 matching grants totaling more than $1.8M to municipalities and nonprofit heritage organizations to advance their preservation and education missions. These seed grants have leveraged an additional $19.5M in public and private investment, fueling economic development throughout the region;
• Leading the effort among 13 communities and all public and private stakeholders to develop the 85-mile Essex Heritage Scenic Byway as cultural heritage destination, fostering economic growth and regional collaboration;
• Expanding our successful partnership with the National Park Service in youth engagement initiatives such as First Bloom, F1rst Jobs and America’s Best Idea that expose our next generation to the resource and environmental stewardship practices that characterize the NPS ethic;
• Extended the organization’s premier partnership event, Essex Heritage Trails & Sails, to its tenth season and generating its largest audience ever;
• Creating hundreds of unique Essex Heritage member experiences in collaboration with partner sites for all north of Boston residents and visitors to enjoy;
• Expanding the Essex Heritage Photo Safaris and creating unique heritage travel experiences connecting hundreds of photo enthusiasts to the unique landscapes of Essex National Heritage Area in exciting new ways;
• Coordinating two ‘Teach American History’ grants, educating 250 teachers from 28 public school districts and connecting with 38,000 students in Essex County with fresh ways to teach national history and use primary resource materials to instruct and inspire their students;
• Partnering with the Border to Boston Trail Coalition, regional planning agencies, and MassDOT to expedite development of the 28-mile, 8-community Border to Boston recreational Trail, including work to access and leverage $718,000 in Federal funding;
• Collaborating with the Essex Agricultural Society and MA Department of Agricultural Resources to create and maintain, the on-line “buy-local” resource connecting consumers to local farms, farm stands and farmers markets;
• Celebrating the substantial accomplishments of people and organizations dedicated to the advancement of the Essex Heritage mission in their own communities through the Essex Heritage Hero Award and Pioneers in Partnership Awards;
• Engaging the 738,000 residents of Essex County in creative ways to discover the rich resources that we work so passionately to preserve...greatly enhancing the quality of life for the residents of Essex County.

Essex Heritage Quarterly Trustee Meeting

I recently attended a quarterly meeting of the governing board of Essex Heritage, and the following observations are offered for your attention.

• Special thanks to VP Jack Good, from People’s United Bank who filled in and presided over the meeting.
• Several important dates were offered, and they are presented here for your future planning.
• The 2012 Heritage Hero Event will be held on May 9, 2012, at the world famous Peabody-Essex Museum. The event will be sponsored by our long term generous community partner, the Salem Five Bank, and I am humbled and honored to have been named the Heritage Hero award winner to be recognized that evening,
• Each year we offer two regional meeting to provide valuable information on our mission and achievements, The dates of those two meeting have been established on April 10th and October 23rd at locations to be determined in the future, but you can be reasonably certain that the venues will be at a location you will want to visit.
• Reports were offered on the tenth anniversary Trails and Sails events, the Hunt Photo and Video sponsored Photo Safari’s and the Essex Heritage Photo contest, all of which were more successful than ever before.
• The Friendship will travel to Baltimore, MD in 2012, its superb inner harbor, and the NPS’S Fort Mc Henry National Park, to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. ENHC and the NPS will expand their summer work program for local youths. Work continues on the restoration of the Light House area on Baker’s Island in Salem Harbor and we remain optimistic that at some point opportunities to visit that site will be available in the future,
• Grants to help identify opportunities on two scenic byways in this region continue to be sought and marketing efforts to create signage, web sites and logo’s will expand.
• Please watch for the next ENHC Newsletter, where a link to a Salem State University Quality of Life survey will be presented. We look forward to your input.

MIAA Playoffs

Congratulations to Marblehead and Hamilton-Wenham High school football entries in the MIAA Playoffs. Neither team made it to the final games of the playoffs, but should be applauded for their efforts and a wonderful season.

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