Friday, September 28, 2012

Essex Happenings...September 28, 2012

Developing the Future Vision for the National Park Service

Annie Harris, Executive Director of Essex Heritage, recently attended a meeting of the National Park Service's Advisory Board's planning committee in Washington, D.C. The planning committee includes fifteen members representing a wide base of expertise in natural resources, cultural resources and community groups.

"Our vision for the next century of the National Park Service is for a system of parks, protected areas, and programs that more fully represent all of our heritage - natural, cultural and historic," said Harris.  "Two of our highest priorities are to be more inclusive of people and stories that have not been interpreted by NPS and also to provide more access for urban populations to NPS parks and programs."

Along the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway

Byway Sites Prominent in Trails & Sails
Approximately 50% of this year's Trails & Sails events occur in byway communities, making the byway your gateway to fun and adventure. Check it out at         
Byway Website Enhanced
Searching for things to see and do is now easier thanks to new search features recently added to the byway web page: Check it out and let us know what you think.

17th Century Saturdays Ends on October 6
Time is running out to explore an architectural treasure from America's first century. Over 25 "First Period" buildings (1625-1725) are open to the public on Saturday, October 6. Check them out!

Photo Contest Deadline Fast Approaching!
Deadline for submission: October 1, 2012 

Give it a shot! All photographers are invited to submit images to Essex Heritage's 2012 Photo Contest

All submissions are due by October 1, 2012. Photographs must be taken within the Heritage Area and represent one of this year's three contest categories: "Images of the Essex National Heritage Area", "The Merrimack Valley" or "In Town/Downtown." 

Sponsored by the Essex National Heritage Commission, Hunt's Photo & Video and the Merrimack Valley Planning Commission, the 2012 Photo Contest will award 10-13 prizes to photographers. Shoot, Enter, and Win! Find out more.

Thanks to Our Corporate Members!

A special thanks to new Corporate Member North Shore Elder Services for joining as an Essex Heritage Benefactor. Your support is greatly appreciated!



            One of the tasks that I have taken on this year is to develop a series of profiles that highlight the many elements of that important fall festival, ”Trails and Sails’   Now it seems to be an appropriate time to focus on the purpose and the makeup of the entire event.

Trails and Sails was created a decade ago to shine a spotlight of the many individual events and remarkable venues in this region that together created one of the most spectacular period of events over any two-week period of time, in this region    The event that was organized was the brainchild of the Essex Heritage Executive Director Annie Harris. She had witnessed a similar event in another national heritage area.  Since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, we decided to copy, with adjustments to fit our region that event.  She had watched the success of a similar successful event offered by a sister Heritage Area in the neighboring state of Connecticut.   That program was reasonably new, but showed great potential of long-term success, and seemed to fit our goals of awareness building.

            Without question one of the major reasons the event has been so successful these last ten years has been the cooperation and participation of dozens of visitor sites across the region.    These agreements were the first real partnerships that were established between the Essex Heritage Areas and the managements of the organizations that agreed to offer their locations free of any charges to a pair of visitation weekend.   Their commitment to the process was essential and critical.  Their participation and willingness to be a partner were as least as important as the primary concept offered by Essex Heritage.

Now that we are on the eve of the second weekend of Trails and Sails it is time for all of you to take advantage of this wonderful collection of hikes, walks, climbs, sails, paddles and visits to plan a weekend that opens up the region to your exploration

During the last several months prior to the two weekends, I have taken you on visits to Historic Salem, rural Danvers, and the Gloucester waterfront in our run up of the major weekend events.   We have vicariously ridden the Clipper City Rail Trail in Newburyport, visited the historic Lowell’s Boat Shop and sailed on the Gloucester Sailing ship Thomas E. Lannon.  Together, we visited and shopped at the famous farm owned and operated by Joanne Patton.  Now it is time for you to step out on your own.    There are thirty-four communities in the region, and visits to the cites of Lynn Lawrence, Haverhill and Peabody or the smaller communities like Amesbury, Georgetown or Groveland, there are regional resources just waiting to be discovered, and enjoyed

            Last Weekend the festival began with a sensational kickoff reception held at a TD Bank Branch in Beverly that was attended by hundreds of weekend participants.   That event enhanced by walking tours of Beverly’s downtown by the Beverly Historical Society in partnership with TD Bank.  We thank them along with our other Trails and Sails sponsor, Eastern Bank and REI for their unequaled and complete support.              We sincerely hope that you will take advantage of the events offered this weekend and use the guide book that has been prepared to enjoy this region for weeks and months in the future.

Volunteer Opportunities in the Heritage Area

Check out our latest volunteer opportunities. Time to make a difference and support our community!

Bradley Palmer State Park
Saturday, September 29
REI is Sponsoring a National Public Lands Day Event at Bradley Palmer State Park. A great opportunity to get outside and help our region. Contact Dominique McLean.

Danvers Swamp Walk Build Sessions
Oct 12-14, Oct 19-21
Location: Boardwalk adjacent to rail trail, south of RT97, Danvers.
This winter the Danvers Bi-Peds and volunteers are working the details of the swamp walk 'completion plan' which requires measuring the distance needed to cover in order to finish the project. Visit the Danvers Bi-Peds website for more information.

Following Report was provided by the Danvers Town Archivist
The Danvers Archival Center annual report for FY 2012 is now on-line under
“Archives” at the Peabody Institute Library website
Though the text may be kind of boring, the illustrations of some of our
new acquisitions are kind of neat.

Danvers Rail Trail Safety Discussed
A state agency recently released a report on the potential for improving both vehicular and cyclist safety at THE ROUTE 62 INTERSECTION ON THE RAIL TRAIL. The report was discussed at a recent public meeting and plans are being formulated to improve conditions.

Passing of two Danvers Historical Society Trustees
I am very sorry to report that two most committed and valued Danvers Historical Society Board Members have passed on: long time Danvers Activist Frank Tyrell and Essex Harmony Founder GLEN Mairo both died recently.   Rest in Peace both of you
Salem Power Plant officials offered a public meeting last week.
Footprint that has been named to rehabilitate the half century old power station held a public meeting to bring neighbors and others in the city up to date on their plans.

Topsfield Fair Opens on 9/28 and runs for the next ten days
The fair is one of our longest running partners and we wish them success. Pleasant weather and enthusiastic crowds over the run of the fair.

St. John’s Prep Revamps Homecoming
Prep Rally 2012 – October 13 Join us for Prep Rally on Saturday, October 13. We’ve taken Homecoming, given it a twist, and added new activities and more reasons to come back to campus!
     Mini classes with Prep faculty: Election 2012, Headmaster’s State of the Prep, Making Movies, Cross Fit Demo.
     Complimentary cookout
     Campus tours
     Varsity football and soccer
     Mass of Remembrance

News from Salem Education Foundation

Do you believe in quality public schools?
Do you want to achieve more for our students?
Do you want every child to succeed in the Salem Public Schools?

City and district leaders joined together for a community meeting on Wednesday, September 26  
to learn about the district's turn-around efforts and what all residents of Salem can do to help.

Successful school improvement models raise expectations among teachers and parents of what students can achieve, focus on instruction and training, and rely on input from parents and the community.

During the past year, the entire Salem community became involved in the development of bold strategies to improve every school and ensure that every student in Salem gets a high quality education. Recommendations were made by committed shareholders and a plan for turning around our schools has taken shape. Much of that effort is now underway, and much more is to come. 

Mayor Driscoll and the school leadership spoke about the progress that has been made so far, what to expect this year, and the timeline for achieving all of the school system’s improvement goals.
Believe * Achieve * Succeed

SEF Grant Cycle Now Open! 
The Salem Education Foundation is now accepting applications for teacher grants for the 2012/13 school year. Teachers and staff may apply for up to $1,000 for enrichment grants and up to $3,000 for collaborative grants. Grants are available to teachers and staff at all the public schools in Salem, including the city's two charter schools. Applications must be received by Friday October 12th for consideration in this year's grant round.

Enrichment Grants are the traditional grants awarded by SEF for over 15 years. They are designed to provide funds for classroom teachers who have innovative, meritorious ideas. A project may qualify for funding if it makes creative use common of teaching aids, approaches the curriculum from an imaginative angle, ties non-traditional concepts together or promotes learning in innovative ways.

Collaborative Grants are designed to promote cooperative efforts across disciplines, across grade levels, and among schools. The Collaborative Grants category enables the Foundation to promote professional teamwork, cooperative learning and to share innovation across Salem schools.

For more information, including specific grant guidelines and a list of projects funded in the 2011/12 school year, please visit our website at: 

News from Salem State University

·         Friday, October 12, 2012Athletes WeekendAthletes Hall of Fame InductionFor more information on this event or any of our Athletes Weekend 2012 events please click here.

·         Saturday, October 13, 2012 Athletes WeekendAlumni Golf Tournament, Beverly Golf and Tennis Club, BeverlyPlease visit our webpage to download a printable version of the brochure.

·         Saturday, October 13, 2012Friends and Family Weekend Carnival and BBQMarsh Hall Quad, Central Campus

·         Saturday, October 13, 2012Athletes WeekendCelebration of Coaches and AthletesTwohig Gym, O'Keefe Sports Center

·         Sunday, October 14, 2012Athletes WeekendAlumni GamesPlease RSVP to Tim Shea at

·         Sunday, October 14, 2012Athletes WeekendAlumni BBQ following alumni gamesAlumni Field, O'Keefe Sports Center Your Gift Makes a Difference!

Report from Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Salem
At Spaulding, we don't think of them as just therapists, to us, they are heroes.
Have you been helped by an outstanding therapist who provided unmatched compassionate care to you or a loved one? If so, join us as we celebrate National Rehab Week, September 16-22, 2012 by honoring a special therapist with a donationto Spaulding

With a gift to Spaulding Rehabilitation Network you can honor a therapist's dedication while helping our patients find their strength. Your special therapist will receive a letter of recognition with your personal message of thanks, informing him or her of your generosity.

With your support, our therapists are able to provide exceptional care to our patients and their families. Thank You for recognizing the vital role therapists play in the care we provide.  

ARTZ and Dementia: Innovation, Inclusion & Creative Expression

The opportunity for creative expression through the arts provides people living with dementia an alternative means of communication in a strength-based, process-oriented model.  This conference highlights best practices for creative arts programming through experiential workshops with expert leaders in the field.

The conference will take place on Wednesday, October 3rd, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at New Bridge on the Charles. Click here to see the full conference agenda.
Click here to register.

Aging Parents: Navigating the Journey

Join in on a dynamic panel discussion with experts on navigating the aging journey on Wednesday, October 17th, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the Wakelin Room at the Wellesley Free Library, 530 Washington Street.

The panel will be moderated by Janet Simpson Benvenuti, founder of Life Partners and author of Don't Give Up on Me! a memoir that captures the lessons she learned during the decade she supported her parents while raising her children.  Janet will be joined by three experts who have decades of experience working with families: Dr. Anne McCaffrey, Medical Director of the Marino Center for Integrative Health, Jim Reynolds founder of Caring Companion Home Care, and Dianne Savastano, R.N./MBA and founder of HealthAssist.

The program is free to the public and will be telecast on the local community access channel.  Bring your stories and prepare to enjoy a lively and informative discussion.


Boston Sports
The Boston Professional sports scene is certainly in flux.   The Bruins have been locked out and the entire season appears to be in danger of being cancelled.  The Patriots unexpectedly lost in their home opener and with injury issues and a receiver controversy seems to have the team all adrift.    The Red Sox must win all of their remaining games to just finish winning as many as they lose this year. That record would be the poorest attained in many years.

Local Food Pantries Have a Need
I can only speak with personal knowledge from reports that I have learned from a meeting at the Danvers Council on Aging.  That source has advised that demand for support by both long time Danvers residents and the many families currently lodged in Danvers Motels is increasing and supplies are decreasing.   That facility needs support and more material to provide help to their clients and I am reasonably certain the Food Pantries in the adjacent communities of Salem and Beverly that also provide support to local residents have needs as well.  If anyone reading this report has an opportunity to help in those locations with either non-perishable food or financial resources please consider offering support.  The need is great and any contribution at any local pantry in this region would be most appreciated.     

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