Friday, April 5, 2013

Essex Happening March 29, 2013

Essex Heritage Events and Activities|

Essex Heritage Annual Meeting

The Essex National Heritage Commission Invites You to Attend its Annual Spring Meeting

Wednesday, April 10, 2013 Winnekenni Castle347 Kenoza Avenue, Haverhill, MA 01830

8:00 AM: Continental Breakfast Reception

8:30 - 10:00 AM: Business Meeting

Participate in this free, valuable networking opportunity that will further connect you with the work of Essex Heritage and our partners. The 2013 grant recipients will be announced at the event.

Regional News

Danvers Rail Trail Surface Improved

When the Danvers Rail Trail was completed the Town laid a base coat of crushed gravel on the Trail.  Now in the late Spring or early Summer of 2013 thanks to a State Grant a firmly packed base heavily compacted covering of stone dust will be applied as a finish coat on the surface.   This new surface will certainty make the trail much more useable and maintenance of the trail will be that much more manageable.

MBTA Continues to Meet in Salem About Garage

The MBTA continues to hold public meeting to receive input from Salem residents about the make up and design of the proposed parking garage to be conducted at the MBTA intermodal station in Salem at the end of Washington Street.

City of Salem Honored Former Mayor Levesque

On last Sunday former Mayor Jean Levesque was honored by the city he served for a number of years.  In 1973 Mayor Levesque who was serving, as he had done in the past, as a City Councilor after a number of ballots was elected interim Mayor to replace Mayor Samuel Zoll who was appointed a judge.   He served several additional terms as Salem’s Chief Executive.  We at Salem Five Bank worked together with the Mayor, then owners of the Hawthorne Hotel and the city in the development of Pickering wharf.   The event to honor former Mayor Levesque was well attended by numerous City officials including five Mayors that followed Jean Levesque.   He was a most committed man who always had the best interests of Salem at heart and was a joy to work with on several important civic projects.   I had a conflicting event on that day and was unable to attend, but we are certain that the event was a big success. 

City of Beverly Seeks Commitment to Finish Carriage House

Mayor William Scanlon is seeking a commitment of $100,000 from the City Council to complete exterior work on the Carriage House at the city owned Lynch Park.   The investment by the community will be used to replace windows and doors on the proposed community function space.   The goal of the restoration is to make the property self sufficient by increasing rental income to cover operating expenses.   Essex Heritage was one of the first local not for profits to use the facility for an Annual Meeting and were most impressed at that time and since then many additional improvements have been accomplished.

Haverhill to Improve Farm Site

The City of Haverhill where Essex Heritage will hold its 2013 Annual Meeting has make an announcement about a most valuable piece of open land in that community. The Tattersall Farm is located at 542 North Broadway in Haverhill.   The farm was deeded to the City in the will of Alice Tattersall in 1999 and the bequest came with several preservation and conservations limitations.  These limitations will be considered as part of a $572,000 joint venture between the Commonwealth and the community.  The Commonwealth has made almost $400,000 in commonwealth finds available and $50,000 has been provided the Tattersall Charitable Trust.   The remaining money needed to complete this project will be invested by the community.   The project will include a   playground with a water commitment, open learning space and expanded trails.  The goal of the project is it increase the available space and to provide some citizen agricultural uses. When completed this is expected to be a valuable addition to the community’s open space programs

Salem Senior Center Gains Council Approval

I have been keeping track of the efforts connected with the City of Salem and their efforts to site and build a new Senior Center to serve a fast growing percentage of Salem residents.  I have a continuing interest in this issue as I still consider Salem as a most important community in my life.   For your information I was born in the City of Salem and have worked and been connected with a large number of organizations that have had positive impacts on the life of the city in the last decades.   I am fortunate to have served as the Chairman and as a board member of the Danvers Council on Aging that helps to manage the highly successful and inviting Senior Center on Stone Street in Danvers.  I have watched that nationally accredited Senior Center serve a large number of Danvers residents and regularly offer topical programs to make life more comfortable and helpful for the ever expanding senior population of this region.  

Danvers has a most competent and caring staff that together with a facility that is spacious and welcoming plays a major role in the success of DCOA.   We can only hope that this move to finally create a senior facility where Salem Seniors can be proud of and will provide the needed space and programs will soon be a reality.

My second reason for a continuing interest in this project is my ongoing connection with North Shore Elder Services in Danvers.  I serve on that Board of Directors representing Danvers and that organization has an ongoing relationship with other Councils on Aging including the one in Salem.   NSES voted at a recent meeting to offer support to the project to build a new Center in the location in the Gateway Center at a major entrance location into Salem at the junction of Bridge and Boston Streets.   I also weighed in a past posting to this site with a personal endorsement of the project.   I recently received a message from the Leadership of NSES that follows as is provided for your information.

Great news this evening from the City of Salem.  By a vote of 10 to 1, the Salem City Council has approved the bond funding for a new senior center at the corner of Boston and Bridge Streets. Congratulations to Mayor Driscoll for her dynamic and dedicated leadership in seeing this project through to a successful conclusion.  Next milestone – groundbreaking! Congratulations and thanks to Senator Joan Lovely and former City Council President Matt Veno for their leadership of the Salem Senior Center Study Committee.

Twenty Seats Available in Peabody Election

Nomination Papers are now available for the November election in Peabody.   To appear on the municipal election Ballot residents must obtain fifty signatures from City of Peabody voters.  In the November election there are twenty seats available including all member of the Council,  School Committee and other positions.

Wenham Finance Committee Re-Structures

The Wenham Finance committee has reorganized after the resignation of its Chairman.  In his place Mike Lucy has been named Chairman

City of Beverly School District Offers Survey

The City of Beverly School District will be offering parents and guardians of students in the Beverly system the chance to complete an electronic survey and to share feedback to city officials about the school system.   The survey will be available at through the end of March


Community Day of Service – March 28

Join us for the Prep's annual Community Day of Service on Holy Thursday, March 28.  Taylor Bottomley ’02 and other members of the Alumni Board invite alumni to join them and participate in the day with faculty, students and parents. If you would like to be a part of the day, register here if  you are a Prep parent, please register using the form in the Parent Portal.

The volunteers that the school gathers for this event have done some wonderful work on numerous projects including some knitting for the retired Xaverian Brothers that live on campus.  One year, as an example the group was involved in a much needed painting project at the club facilities at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Salem that was much appreciated by the leadership of that organization.

Essex County Jail Projects Progressing

On the grounds of the twenty year old county jail facility in Middleton there are a couple of new projects being completed that will bring the jail that serves the thirty-four communities located in the region known as Essex County.  This two-decade old jail was constructed to replace two really old and out of date jails in Salem and Lawrence.  The old Salem facility that was beyond repair as a jail was taken over by the City of Salem who then found a developer.  The site has converted with a large infusion of cash into market housing and a reasonably successful restaurant named appropriately the Great Escape, complete with some remaining jail cells and the cell doors that were used in the previous iteration and gives the location authenticity.

On the Middleton site a new prisoner intake area is being completed and will be ready for use at the end of this year.  The present intake area will be converted to a female incarceration area. This facility will serve as a transition location where prisoner decisions on moves directly to Framingham or to a county location in Salisbury.

The most far-reaching improvement on the site is a regional new dispatch center that will handle 911 Emergency calls for a number of communities in the region.  That site is now being completed with telephone equipment as expected to be in service this summer for the communities in the region that have signed up for the collective shared effort.  This is a most interesting cooperative effort undertaken by a number of forward thinking municipalities.  In general when these improvements are completed with the work on the adjacent regional Technical School the area and the region will have undergone a radical transformation.

Medical-Senior-Disability Matters

Ski Event at Loon Mountain

The COPAA amputee support group sponsored by Cornell Brothers in various regional locations held a very successful ski event for disabled members at Loon Mountain in New Hampshire.   I am pleased to note they have done some work to help them raise some much needed seed money to support the rehabilitation efforts and they have received monetary gifts from two local financial institutions.  Thanks are offered to both Eastern and Salem Five Banks.

Adaptive Sports Fairs for Disabled on Cape Cod and the North Shore Presented by Spalding Hospital

Spaulding Adaptive Sports Centers on the North Shore and Cape Cod are pleased to present two adaptive sports fairs this Spring!  These fairs are the perfect opportunity to come out and see our equipment first hand and ask all of your program questions.  Get the dates on your calendar.

CAPE Cod on Saturday, May 18th from 11:00 AM until 3:00 PM at Spaulding  Cape Cod 311 Service Rd. East Sandwich

NORTH SHORE on Saturday, April 13th  From 1:00 PM Until 3:00 PM at  Lynch Van Oterloo from YMCA, 40 Leggs Hill Rd, Marblehead

People in the News

North Andover Teacher Honored

Judith Chmielecki, a teacher in the Northern Essex Community College for the past 13 years, has been honored by receiving the Staff and Organizational Development Award for Excellence that recognizes the work of teachers in the community college system.

Peabody City Employee wins Peabody Chamber Award

Ms. Maria Ferri, Director of Vocational Education in the City of Peabody has been named the Mary Upton Ferrin Award for demonstrating leadership and serving as a role model and champion of  humanitarian based efforts.

Personal Observations

Local High Schools Successes

Congratulations to the Danvers High School basketball team that successfully defending their State Basketball Title and the School’s Hockey Program competed most effectively as well.  The Girls Hockey group from St. Mary’s in Lynn also won a state title, and Swampscott High School Hockey entry went all the way to the finals.

Spring Starting Soon

On the day after the most recent winter snowstorm, the calendar noted that we were then on the first day of spring.  It is certainly not spring out my front door as we are experiencing cooler than normal weather and the warmer nicer weather cannot come fast enough to satisfy me.   I am using the local retail malls as a location to continue my personal walking program and can’t wait to get back outdoors.

One last Winter Storm?

Are the snow storms that we have been experiencing, the final grip of Winter or are the disturbances that are being reported as lurking down the coast a sign of more stormy weather still to come.   Are we caught up in the winter storm track?  Will we continue the 2013 winter of snow and colder weather or are we poised to move into the next season?  I, for one, would like to spring arrive and the snow disappear!

Current Inspirational Book Read and Enjoyed

From time to time in this space, I have reported on some of the books that I have read.   I was born in 1937, so I was alive for all of the World War that was fought from 1941 through 1945.   I wanted to be exposed to almost anything that I can read about that time of my life to fill in blanks from that period.     I have just finished reading a book about that war called “ A Higher Call.  This incredible true story of combat and chivalry in the war-torn skies of World War ll was written by Adam Makos.

It is the incredible story of two flyers, a German Fighter Pilot by the name of Franz Stigler and an America, B-17 Bomber Pilot by the name of Charlie Brown and a rookie crew who met over the skies of Europe during the war.   The German Pilot that had a chance to shoot down and destroy an American Bomber but, in fact escorted the American air plane back to safe haven in England.   The story continues to a reunion four decades after the encounter.  Great story of an exciting time, and an excellent read.

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