Friday, January 13, 2012

Essex Happenings 1.13.12

Essex Happenings 1.12.12

Region and local community receive Federal Designation

The City of Newburyport has learned that the port city has been designated as one of only fourteen such communities nation wide so designated by the United States Coast Guard as a coast Guard City. In 1998 the Congress enacted a law that allowed that branch of the military service to designate communities that “make special recognition of the professional work of the Coast Guard men and woman assigned to that community” as a Coast Guard City, and the clipper city was so named. Newburyport was previously designated as the birthplace of the Coast Guard founded in 1891. Later this summer on August 4, 2012 on the actual date of the founding, the City of Newburyport will formally celebrate this significant designation.

Second Former St. John’s Prep Graduate takes over High Profile Division 1 Football Program

I have no idea why Bill O’Brien, the Patriots Offensive Coordinator would agree to become the Penn State head football coach with all of the problems still to be solved after the scandal at that university, but it appears that he is now in place in Happy Valley. He seems to be making all the proper conciliatory gestures to place himself in a good light at Penn State. I can only surmise that he received a substantial salary increase and the chance to run his own program and get back to the college scene that may suit him better with his young family.

Another interesting sidebar to this story is that with O’Brien at Penn State and Brian Kelly also running the football program at the Golden Dome at Notre Dame in South Bend there are now two former St. John’s Preparatory School scholar-athletes heading up two of the highest profile Division 1 football programs in this country. They both played at about the same time at the Prep and were certainly influenced by the coach in those days at the Prep, Fred Glatz

A Little more information about some upcoming events scheduled for alumni and friends of St. John’s Prep in the next month or so. The Empty Bowls event is a major fundraising event with the proceeds being directed to Haven From Hunger Pantry in Peabody. The event includes the opportunity to purchase a student created ceramic bowl and then fill it from a wide variety of soups from local vendors. This has always been a very successful and well attended event that results in a substantial donation each year to a most worthy cause.

Brainstorm with Us: January 10

How can we make the Prep’s Alumni Association programs or events an even more valuable resource? Please bring your enthusiasm and ideas to the next meeting on Tuesday, January 10 in Xavier Hall, Room 500. A light dinner will be served at 6:30 pm, followed by the meeting at 7:00 pm. Sign up now.
• Unique career development opportunities. Can you offer a summer internship? Or a shadow day experience? How about a career counseling session for someone hoping to get into your field?
• Access to otherwise unobtainable venues: a look behind-the-scenes at museums, radio & TV studios, major sports arenas, etc.
Please contact Lauren Ritchie at or (978) 774-6727 x 303.
Warm Up on a Cold Winter Night: January 12

Enjoy delicious hot soup, bring home a beautiful bowl hand-crafted by students in our ceramics classes and help support Haven from Hunger in Peabody at the Empty Bowls Dinner Party! This popular annual event will take place on Thursday, January 12 from 6 pm to 8 pm in Memorial Dining Hall. Guests are asked to make a minimum $10 donation per bowl.

SwingTown! Concert: January 13

A cappella bands continue to boom in popularity, so don’t miss out when the Prep’s very own SwingTown appears in concert on Friday, January 13 from 7 pm to 8:30 pm in Kaneb Theatre, Alumni Hall.

Honoring the Prep’s Tess Witwicki: January 17

We hope you will join us on Tuesday, January 17 to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. King and to honor Prep teacher Tess Witwicki for her commitment to diversity. We will gather for the Prep’s third annual Martin Luther King Day Dinner on January 17 from 6 pm to 8 pm in Milano Dining Room, Memorial
Boston College Alumni Reception: February 22

All Prep grads currently attending BC are invited to a reception on February 22 in Walsh Hall on the BC campus, 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm. Stop by for pizza and to hear what’s new at the Prep from some of your favorite faculty and staff. Please register by February 20.

Wanted! Unique Auction Items

Eagles in Flight is the theme for this year’s Gala Auction on Saturday, March 17 at the CoCo Key Hotel in Danvers. With an extensive online auction, as well as a live and silent auction, we are on the hunt for more than 400 items, a feat that would not be possible without the support of our alumni! Items that have always proven to be very successful as well as new and different items to catch our bidders’ interest are listed below. If you can help by donating any of the following, please let us know!
• Golf outings
• Sports tickets
• Timeshare weeks, ski and beach vacations
• Trip to Ireland. The gala is on St. Patrick’s Day after all!
• Unique career development opportunities. Can you offer a summer internship? Or a shadow day experience? How about a career counseling session for someone hoping to get into your field?
• Access to otherwise unobtainable venues: a look behind-the-scenes at museums, radio & TV studios, major sports arenas, etc.
Please contact Lauren Ritchie at or (978) 774-6727 x 303.

Town of Danvers Receives Positive news Relative to motel students school Transportation Costs

The administration of the town of Danvers has been claiming for a number of months that the costs associated with school busing of the children located in Danvers motels as part of the resettled homeless families were part of an unfunded mandate and that the town should be appropriately reimbursed. Officials and many businesses and residents of the town have done much to make the folks relocated to that community feel at home, including many support systems like recreation and social services, but the costs of bus transportation was putting a tremendous strain on the financial budget of the town.

Danvers has recently learned that the Auditor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has agreed with the community’s contention on the re-imbursement of the costs and now Town officials, with the help of State Representative Spilliotis, are investigating options to discover the best and fastest way to recapture the expended funds. Some time may still pass before the funds are actually received by the town, but getting the Commonwealth to agree that the funds are due the town is a substantial first step in a positive direction. The community is focused on receiving the reimbursed funds in this fiscal year, when they were disbursed and will make that point very clear to the Commonwealth and they intend to use every resource available to pursue their claim, including a supplemental State budget allocation to handle the obligation.

A couple of final words on sports in the region

The hockey rematch last weekend between the Bruins and Vancouver Canucks was as emotional and contentious as was expected, but the Bruins took a few too many penalties and gave up too many Power Play goals and lost 4-3. They allowed Vancouver to score four times while the Bruins were one man and in one case two players short.. At the same time the Bruins did not score on any of the seven shorthanded opportunities they had. The 5 on 3 two man advantage was most difficult to understand as a Bruin player was attacked by half a dozen Vancouver players and the home team wound up with a two man disadvantage. All of those scores on the power play is like an NFL quarterback to throwing four interceptions in a game. The chances of winning are greatly diminished with four “picks”. This is the final time these two teams will meet this season, unless they were to meet again in the playoff finals and that would certainly be a treat.

Now that the opening round of the National Football League playoffs has been completed, the New England Patriots now know who their first opponent will be on January 14, 2012 at Gillette Stadium, and the opponent next week will be after a stunning first play overtime victory, the Denver Bronco's as Tim Tebow engineered a ‘MILE HIGH MIRICLE” to stun the Steelers.

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