Saturday, December 8, 2012

Essex Happenings….December 7, 2012


More than 100 businesses and community leaders from Essex County attended Essex National Heritage Commission’s (Essex Heritage) annual fall meeting, which was sponsored by the Peabody Historical Society. Essex Heritage nominated the following individuals to serve on its Board of Commissioners for a three-year term: Alan Berry of C.P. Berry Homes — English Commons at Topsfield, Claudia Chuber of the Peabody Essex Museum, Phil Conway of Conway Cahill-Brodeur Funeral Home, Patrick DeIulis of DeIulis Brothers Construction, Tom Gould of Treadwell’s Ice Cream, Richard Hydren of the Rowley Chamber of Commerce, Mark Leonard of Eastern Bank, James Rudolph of Rudolph Friedmann LLP, Julie Saviano of Andover Endodontics Inc. and Rosario Ubiera-Minaya of the Salem Education Foundation.
            Essex Heritage also awarded its annual Pioneer in Partnership Awards, which recognize individuals and organizations that exemplify the commission’s spirit of collaboration and build partnerships and celebrate the historic, cultural and natural resources of Essex County. Lindsay Diehl was recognized for her role at the Wenham Museum, and a moment of silence was held to honor the passing of Glen Mairo from Essex Harmony. Awards and congressional citations were presented to Bread & Roses Centennial Committee, Capt. Michael Rutstein of the Schooner Fame, Danvers Rail Trail Advisory Committee, Newburyport Powder House Restoration Committee and The House of the Seven Gables.
The Bread & Roses Centennial Committee was honored for its passionate work, which brought international attention to the city of Lawrence. Rutstein, owner and operator of Schooner Fame, was honored for providing the children of Salem with an opportunity to experience firsthand the adventures of sailing aboard a replica Salem privateer. The Danvers Rail Trail Advisory Committee was recognized for the committee’s leadership and commitment to developing the new popular recreational amenity. Newburyport Powder House Restoration Committee was honored for its perseverance and dedication to preserving one of New England’s few remaining powder houses. The House of the Seven Gables was recognized for its collaboration with Essex Heritage to provide a unique learning opportunity for Salem’s Latino youths to connect the city to their heritage.

I do not think that it is ever too early to begin to provide information on upcoming programs of the Essex Heritage Personal Information Program.  Membership is modest in pricing and numerous programs are regularly offered to members and non members alike.  The costs are lower for members.  The following is an explanation of the next program to be offered in early 2013.

     Thursday, January 17, 2013 •
     6:00 - 7:30pm
Old Ipswich Rum Tour & TastingTurkey Shore Distilleries23 Hayward Street, Unit 8, Ipswich, MA 01938 (map it)
Learn how rum was made 175 years ago, then have a drink with history!  Enjoy an evening reconnecting to a significant part of New England's past, and taste a line of hand-crafted, local rums at Turkey Shore Distilleries. Turkey Shore Distilleries was formed in 2010 in the historic coastal town of Ipswich by two childhood friends and locals, Mat Perry and Evan Parker. Using table-grade sweet molasses and a custom-built 250-gallon copper pot still, Old Ipswich Rum is a true American product destined to awaken the New England spirit in all of us. Please note: Must be 21 or older to sample the spirits. Children must be accompanied by parents.
Reservations required.Essex Heritage Members $17; Non-Members $24Please register online (above) or call Essex Heritage at 978-740-0444 with questions or to confirm space is still available before sending checks to: Essex National Heritage Commission, 221 Essex Street, Suite 41 Salem, MA 01970.

Essex National Heritage Commission
I thought that it might be appropriate to provide an update on the mission of the managing arm of the Essex Heritage.

The Essex National Heritage Commission (ENHC) is the non-profit management organization for the ENHA. The Commission's mission is to promote and preserve the historic, cultural and natural resources of the ENHA. The Commission develops public/private partnerships that support the hundreds of heritage organizations and sites in the ENHA's thirty-four communities. Bringing together organizations diverse in size, budget, mission and experience, the ENHC provides a structure that respects, promotes and sustains regional resources and works to make those resources integral to residents’ lives and visitors’ experiences.
The ENHC has an impressive array of successes in building partnership programs. Learn more about our successes.
The Commission is supported by a 150 member Board of Commissioners who live and/or work within the area and who serve as representatives of the communities, businesses, community organizations, educational institutions and historic, cultural and natural resources of the region.More about the Board of Commissioners and a List of Commissioners
A twenty-five member Board of Trustees, chosen from the Board of Commissioners, oversees the management of the ENHC. They meet every other month and also serve on standing and ad hoc committees. List of Trustees
Seven Officers oversee the direction and financial management of the Essex National Heritage Commission. They are elected by the Board of Commissioners and serve for a two year term. List of Officers
The Corporate Partners are instrumental in helping the Commission to achieve its goals. Their commitment to the Essex National Heritage Area community allows the Commission to continue to provide quality programs for the region. The Commission thanks its Corporate Partners for their generous support of its work and the historic, cultural and natural resources in the Area.ENHC Corporate Grant Partners


Salem Ferry Announces large Reduction in Ridership During 2012
In a recent edition of a local newspaper it was reported that ridership on the Salem Ferry between that city and Boston was off over previous years.   The number of passengers last summer was 30,000 less than last year and only one half of the total carried in 2010.   The reductions were due in part to a late start of operations and certain weather issues. Despite those disappointing numbers, at this time the operator, Boston Harbor Cruises, intends not only to continue the service but to increase the number of trips in 2013, and to offer discounts to Salem residents, as an incentive to grow the service. Addition attention will be paid to the schedule and times of departure from the two ports and efforts to make the schedule more convenient and have it fit to client needs. This service is most important to the city as visitors from Boston have used the ferry especially during the summer and in the October Halloween period which is so valuable to the City.

The Town of Danvers is moving on to a new phase of construction on the High School
The Town of Danvers is beginning a new phase of the High School Rehabilitation and Building Project.  The foundation and the shell are starting to be erected for the new portion of the building that will house a cafeteria and School Administration offices.  The new building is also where a new entrance to the school will be located.  It is expected that this phase of the project will be completed by June 2013 in time for the school to start again in September.

First Wind Turbine Approved in Danvers
A new Automobile Dealership currently under construction at 72 Andover Street owned by Kelly Automotive received permission to add a wind turbine as part of the project.  The new building will have a wind turbine erected on the roof of the building where new cars and used cars will also be sold.  

Community Preservation Act in Newburyport Seeking Applications for Funding
The City of Newburyport has set Valentines Day, February 14, 2013 as the deadline for preservation project applications for Community Preservation funding.   There are obligations for submission that must accompany any application to be considered. If any resident of the City requires additional information on the program or to obtain an application for the program, contact or call 978 -765-4400.   This program can be a wonderful adjunct to community funding and the preservation and conservation accomplished is a great addition to keeping the valuable resources of the community and the region.   After the most recent election and the adoption of the Community Preservation Act by both the cities of Beverly and Salem, more potential projects in this region can be considered.  

City of Beverly Receives Gant for Expansion
The City of Beverly has been advised that they have been picked to receive a one half a million dollar grant to begin the preliminary work to restructure the Brimbal Avenue/Route 128 intersection.   This work has long been anticipated and it is expected that it will be most beneficial to economic development plans in the Garden City.   The improvement will dramatically improve access and connectivity to other parts of the City.  The city has been advocating for many years for the project being planned.              

School in North Andover Offers Public Skating
In a most positive recreational announcement, it has been reported that public skating will be offered this winter on Sunday evenings at the Brooks School on Great Pond Road.   The arrangement is a result of the Town of North Andover and the school.    In this case a modest fee will be charged and participants must provide their own skates as no rentals will be provided.

Town of Hamilton receives Grant
The Town of Hamilton has received a $60,000 environmental grant to be used to correct environmental deficiencies caused by the Town landfill. The funds will be used on a device that will help clear the air from the Town Land Fill.\

News from the St. John’s Prep Alumni Association for all Local Alumni - Alumni Christmas Reception - December 5Please join host Joe Milano '62 and the SJP Alumni Board at the Union Oyster House in Boston on Wednesday, December 5 from 6-8 p.m. for the annual Christmas Reception. For more information and to register, please click here.


News of the passing of State Representative Spiliotis
The very sad news of the untimely death of a long-time elected official and advocate of North Shore Elder Services  and the clients served by that agency, Peabody State Representative Joyce Spiliotis. 

The notice that follows was issued by the State House News Service:  Rep. Joyce Spiliotis, a Peabody Democrat who has served in the House since 2003, passed away overnight, according to two of her colleagues. She was 65.

Spiliotis died after a battle with cancer, according to her House colleagues.

Rep. Bradford Hill, a good friend of Spiliotis, said he was “crushed” by the news of her death. 

Hill commuted from the North Shore to the State House with Spiliotis for many years and said she kept her illness a secret. She was in the hospital during the last few days, he said. 

I didnt know. She was very private about it, he said. She didnt really tell anybody, which is a little surprising to me. She was so open and so frank in so many ways. 

We had more fun on the way home, we laughed, said Hill, a Republican from Ipswich. “She always had a laugh. We would call her a card. She was always fun to be around.” Rep. Theodore Speliotis, a Danvers Democrat, said he knew she was not doing well, and thought she was in hospice care for some time. 

It is still quite a shock to see her go at 65 years old,” Speliotis said. 

House Speaker Robert DeLeo issued a statement late Thursday morning.

I was truly shocked and saddened to learn of the death of my good friend and colleague, Rep. Joyce Spiliotis, the vice chair of the Joint Committee on Municipalities and Regional Government,” DeLeo said. “Joyce fought passionately for the causes and people of Peabody. She was down-to-earth, funny and universally liked by her colleagues in the legislature as well as staff. All of us in the House of Representatives will miss her deeply.”

Hill said when they drove together she always talked about Peabody, particularly the senior citizens of the city. I think what we are going to miss on the North Shore is her dedication to this job. She loved that city, the people of Peabody,” Hill said. 

She was born and raised in Peabody, and lived there her whole life. She was Peabody City Councilor from 1994 until her election to the House in 2003. She was also worked at the Salem District Court, according to Hill. 

Spiliotis was elected in 2002 to represent the Houses 12th Essex District and was unopposed when she won reelection earlier this month. She most recently served as the vice chair of the Municipalities and Regional Government Committee and also served on the Ways and Means, Global Warming and Climate Change and Consumer Protection committees. 

Moynihan Named at Northern Essex Community College
William Moynihan a former Chief Probation Officer in Haverhill has been named by Governor Deval Patrick to be the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Northern Essex Community College.  His appointment is immediate and has recently served after his retirement on the Drug Task Force in Haverhill.


Grey’s Anatomy TV Drama airs show on Amputation
The Director of the Advocacy, Support and Idea Exchange group at Cornell O  & P, “Posie” Mansfield  sent the following message that I have reprinted here to make you aware of a Television show that focused on People with disabilities.

            The Amputee Coalition has been working with ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy to provide insight into limb loss and the journey to recovery and readjustment. The show has written into its storyline the above knee amputation of one of its main characters and the producers are striving to make the portrayal as realistic as possible and show that life goes on after an amputation..
            The show supports the mission of the Amputee group and they aired  a public service announcement (PSA) on behalf of the Amputee Coalition during its Thursday, November 29, 2012 episode. This is exciting because Grey’s Anatomy is one of the top television dramas with some 17 million viewers. The PSA will help raise awareness about our organization and our resources for amputees and their families.


St. Richards Church in Danvers
As I have reported previously in this space, St. Richard’s the Catholic Church on Forest Street in Danvers is in the process of organizing a large active planning group that is considering alternatives for a year-long celebration to help parish member remember the past, celebrate the present and look forward to the future.  

In addition to the planning the church will choose from a number of entries in the raffle for two New England Patriot tickets to the December 30 th game that will be drawn on December 2nd after the 9:00 AM Mass.  Proceeds from the drawing that currently exceeds $700.00 will be used to help underwrite expenses during the 2013 schedule of celebratory events.

A Youth Logo Contest is open to students in grades 5-10.  Entries will be accepted through December 2nd and those entries already entered are presently on display in the church lobby until December 9th when the winner will be selected.  The prize is an Entertainment Basket with gift certificates provided by Coco Keys, AMC Theaters, Goodies, Supremes and Sunnyside Bowl.   We look forward to receiving even more entries before the deadline.  A Complete listing of the events planned during the anniversary year can be found on the parish web site

Do not forget the concert on Sunday at the church fat 4:00 for rhea benefit of the Food Pantry   the only admission price is a bag of non-perishable food for the Pantry

Holiday Shopping 2012
It appears that the American Consumer is or has voted on the condition of the United States economy.   Over the long Thanksgiving Weekend that carried through Grey Thursday, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday that more people spent more money shopping than in previous years.   I am going to leave it to the main line media experts to relate the actual numbers, but it clearly has increased.   We are hearing estimates of ten percent or more in increases.   It was also a most positive sign that more and more of the shoppers used cash or debit cards with the intention to pay as you go instead of putting their purchases on a personal credit card.  

We certainly hope that the members of the United States Congress, after the Thanksgiving recess, are getting down to the business of addressing the potential of additional revenue, attention to the need to curtail Federal spending and establishing a balanced US Budget get down to honest discussions.

Pearl Harbor Day…. December 7
On this date in 1941. A number of Japanese aircraft from aircraft carriers attacked early on a Sunday morning what was the primary naval base in the Hawaiian Islands serving the Pacific Ocean region.   On that morning over 2400 sailors were killed in the attack and 30 United States ships of the line were either partially or completely destroyed.  The event called by then US President Franklin Roosevelt  “A Day that will live in infamy” was the singular event that brought the United State into the World War.  I  thought that it was appropriate here, to point out the passing of the anniversary date and to remember the many from that “Greatest Generation” who made the ultimate sacrifice in that horrible war.   It is just past Veterans Day when we honor those that served            .                                              

State of Massachusetts MIAA local High School Football Results
In the state semi-finals Beverly continued its undefeated season and now will now face Natick High School and St. John’s Prep defeated Andover for the right to face Brockton in the Finals on Saturday are scheduled to be played at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro and other locations.   In other action of Essex County Schools St. Mary’s of Lynn and Lynnfield also advanced to the finals on Saturday.

            Congratulation are also offered to several area High schools in Essex County. Masconomet, North Shore Tech and Amesbury all reached the semi-finals but just came up a bit short.  In the next posting of this blog we will report and comment on the area schools that won titles.

NHL Owners and Players call on Federal Mediators to Settle Difficulties
The hockey lock out that has resulted in the cancelation of hundreds of games has reached a new level and a professional federal mediator has been asked to help resolve this situation that seems insolvable   I am not optimistic, but it is at the very least, this is an attempt to bring the sides together and craft a solution that will work for both sides.

Essex Heritage’s CO & CFO Susan Lippman has successfully undergone surgery and will be on leave from her duties from 11/27/12 through 1/7/13.   We wish her a prompt and complete recovery. Good luck Susan and fast recovery.

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