Snorkeling Plum Cove

Took advantage of this hot weather and did a little snorkeling at Plum Cove. Here are a couple videos, but I did learn two lessons:
1. Put charged batteries in the camera
2. Stay still longer
It feels like you’re not moving, but looking at the video it’s pretty fast. I also didn’t get much shot as the low battery kept shutting off the camera. I hope to get some better videos to share later this week.

We saw a winter skate, baby flounder, hermit crabs, and cunner fish.

Blackburn Beckons

Elizabeth and John journeyed 15 hours from Charleston, S.C. to participate in Saturday’s Blackburn Challenge. They have trained extensively for the event and sounded disappointed when they learned that the forecast is for calm seas.  Here they are putting the finishing touches on their sleek 18 and 21 foot ocean kayaks.

Each Photograph Tells a Story at the RAA

The Photography contingent of the Rockport art Association is having its 3rd Summer Show beginning with an opening reception on Sunday, July 24th from 2:00 to 4:00. The show runs through August 23rd.

This particular show has a theme called “STORIES”. Each contributing artist has provided a story associated with their photo submission. The story will be posted on the wall next to its photo. The viewer can learn something about what the artist was hoping to capture in the image and/or what the artist was experiencing at the time the image was created.

Stop by the Art Association during one of these sultry summer days and see some cool art. The R.A.A. is open Monday thru Saturday 10:00 ~ 5:00, and Sunday Noon ~ 5:00

This photo is called “View From The Old Sloop” by Tom Philbrook.  The “story” for it goes like this:

“I’m afraid of heights, so I was quaking in my boots on that early July morning as I stood on the scaffolding in front of the Congo Church in the center of our village. The front of the church was getting a facelift at the time. This shot was (mostly) taken while standing directly in front of the clock of the Old Sloop.” — Tom Philbrook

John Felock from Magnolia Represents! At The Hoover Dam

Hey Joey, I just spent the weekend in Las Vegas.  In need of a "gambling free zone", I made a side trip to Hoover Dam.  Damn that’s a big dam!  Took along my new GMG decal.  It was 105 degrees, I’m surprised it didn’t melt to my hand.  Quality sticker!
John Felock from Magnolia


Did You Know? (Spurious Claims about Rocky Neck)

That there are spurious claims being made about Rocky Neck, especially concerning the Madfish Wharf galleries?  Two men were walking onto Madfish Wharf this morning and one turned to the other and said: “There are no galleries open down here anymore.”  Of course I immediately corrected him; but I have heard this false rumor on a number of occasions, so it is time to set the record straight.  All the gallery spaces on Madfish Wharf are not only filled, but also operated by a bunch of creative, talented, fun-loving artists and people who want to promote Rocky Neck and the arts in a general on this beautiful little slice of Heaven called Cape Ann.  So any of you who might have heard this rumor, be advised that it is false and come down to Rocky Neck to check it our for yourself.  In addition to the 20 fine galleries and shops you will find on Rocky Neck (9 of them on or by Madfish Wharf alone), there is also great dining at The Studio, The Rudder and Madfish Grill (lunch and dinner), as well as great entertainment Thursday through Sunday nights (and karaoke on Wednesday at Madfish), as well as Sailor Stan’s for a great breakfast or lunch and Amy’s Coffee and Cones for coffee, Richardson’s ice cream or Richie’s Slush.  And if you want to stay on Rocky Neck, there is the Rocky Neck Accommodations, where every room has a deck overlooking beautiful Smith’s Cove.  All this in one of the prettiest places on Cape Ann with some of the most vibrant, unique and independent spirits you’ll ever meet.  And did I mention great art and unique gifts!E.J. Lefavour

Our Lobsterman Dave Jewell Aboard The Lady J Snarls A Huge Ancient Anchor In A Lobster Trawl

He had to tie it off to the side of the boat because it was too heavy to get aboard with his lobster trap hauler and davit.

So he brought it to the State Fish Pier where he hooked it up to the industrial sized boom and lifted it enough to get aboard the deck.

Bidding starts at $500.  Who wants it?


Real Time Blackburn Challenge Caboose: Rubber Duck

Rubber Duck has figured out her ride in the Blackburn Challenge is not the fastest boat in the fleet and so is looking to upgrade. But no one wants a quacky duck onboard so it is the scenic ride for her. Duck wants to have refreshments on the way and so she has written up a web page displaying her whereabouts during the day of Saturday, July 23. If you happen to have a cold one and can tell by the dot on the link here, Rubber Duck will gladly pull over to freshen up as Saturday looks to be a hot challenge. Prior to 8AM Saturday and on Friday the dot (and so duck) will be racing about the island for provisions like duck bill gloss and SP 500. (The Duck Tracker will also be turned off or in test mode prior to the Blackburn for battery charging so the map will not start real updating until 7 AM Saturday.)

Rubber Duck entourage will look like one pale blue kayak (Paul M) and one dark green kayak (Ed C). Follow the dot and come down to greasy pole to watch the finish. (Come quite a bit earlier than Rubber Duck Tracker if you actually want to see some racing.)

Not enough links to Rubber Duck Tracker? Here’s another: 

North Shore Arts Association Live Art Auction Coming Up


Gala Preview Party – Friday, July 29, 5:30 – 8 pm
Public Viewing – July 29 – August 6

Live Auction – Saturday, August 6, 7 – 9 pm

Featuring Auctioneer Frank Kaminski
Doors open at 6 pm for final preview and light refreshments.
This year’s auction introduces several NEW features!

· Gala Preview Party, Friday, July 29, 5:30 – 8 pm

Join us on opening night for an exclusive opportunity to meet the artists and preview the outstanding selection of auction paintings, while enjoying live jazz music, creative hors d’oeuvres, open wine bar ….and beautiful views of Gloucester Harbor at sunset!

· Live online bidding!

If you can’t come to NSAA on August 6 to attend the Live Auction in person, you can still follow the proceedings live from the comfort of home using your computer, and place your own live bids at any time while the Auction is in progress! (Must register by August 5 to bid online; see instructions at )

· View all paintings online at your leisure, at

NSAA Catalog at

Tickets: $15 Live Auction Only * $20 Gala Preview Party Only * or
$30 for Both
· More paintings than ever before with over 100 works of art, this year’s auction offers exceptional variety of subject and style – truly something for everyone!
Seating is limited …please reserve early! Call 978-283-1857 OR register online at
More information:

2011 Auction Footer

Linda Amero @ The Franklin Tonight

Franklin Cafe

Linda Amero Jazz Trio appearing Friday, 7/22/11 Downstairs at The Franklin Cafe, 118 Main St., Gloucester, MA from 7:00 to 10.00 PM featuring Linda Amero (vocals) with Joe “Sonny” Barbato (piano and accordian) & Bronek Suchanek (Double bass). 978-283-7888 reservations (or just sit at the bar).


The historic Annisquam Village Church presents Fado singer Ana Vinagre and her ensemble in an evening of Portuguese  Fado music, Saturday, July 23, at 7:30  A traditional folk ensemble accompanies Vinagre on these folk “Songs of Fate” full of passion, pathos, and humor.  Viriato Ferriera plays viola, Jose Silva is on Portuguese guitarra, and Peter Pimental on bass.

Ana Vinagre was born in the small fishing village of Figueira Da Foz, Portugal. Following in the footsteps of her sister, mother, and grandmother, she began singing fado professionally at the age of 13 as a member of her local folk dance group, Cantarinhas de Buarcos. Vinagre toured extensively with this group throughout Europe, until immigrating to the United States with her husband and singing partner, Jose, in 1972. Today, she is one of the area’s best known and most respected fadistas. Vinagre performs regularly in the Portuguese community for various community and private events, as well as at festivals and other events for a wider audience. She has appeared at the 2002 National Folk Festival, the Northwest Folklife Festival in 2003 and 2004, and a number of times in the Lowell Folk Festival.  In 2005 she won a Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Grant in the Traditional Arts, supporting her continuning efforts to promote Portuguese music and culture.

A tradition dating back hundreds of years, fado singing is “the soul of the Portuguese people”, as described by Vinagre. The emotional core of the fado is saudade, an indefinable yearning or nostalgia for love, times past, or a lost home. Accompanied by a twelve string Portuguese guitar and a bass guitar, the voice of a true fadista embodies and expresses the soulfulness of this music tradition. The traditional fadista dresses in black and uses a shawl as a prop to accentuate the passion of her voice and words. The genre developed in the port city of Lisbon where it was performed at waterfront clubs and bars frequented by sailors and seamen.

The Annisquam Village Church stands at the head of Lobster Cove at 820 Washington Street in Gloucester. Known for its fine acoustics, the Series is in its 24th year, and is dedicated this season to the memory of Houston/Annisquam artist, Colin Kennedy.

Donation $15.   For information:  or 978.283.6416

Blackburn Challenge Salty Stew From Al Peirce

Check out Al’s by clicking the link below

Trash Paddler

Here it is “high summer” and I’m getting a hankerin’ for some Blackburn Challenge Salty Stew. In fact, this upcoming weekend, those venturing to Cape Ann, Massachusetts should find all of the ingredients at their peak of ripeness. With that in mind I’ll share my recipe for cookin’ up this mess.

The first thing you’re gonna need is a big ole pot or, better yet, a great big vat. Next, get yourself a paddle, or perhaps an oar, for stirring. In addition to these items, you’ll need a heat source such as a fire, or, if using the Native American method, some good-sized “boiling rocks”: Twelvefoot, Bass, Brace, Normans Woe, Black Bess, and Tablet (any or all will do). These rocks will need to be gingerly added to the pot after having been heated in the fire.

To get started, fill the pot with some Annisquam salt water and rockweed. Throw in a small cape. Cape Hedge will do. Now add the following coves: Goose, Lobster, Hodgkins, Plum, Lanes, Folly, Hoop Pole, Gap, Whale, Loblolly, Brace, Lighthouse, Old House, and Freshwater.

Using your paddle or oar, stir the pot while adding some heads: Biskie, Gap, and Stage followed by some points: Stanwood, Thurston, Wheeler, Babson, Wigwam, Folly, Halibut, Andrews, Gully, Flat, Emerson, Eastern, and Mussel.

Next grab hold of some necks and toss them in: Davis, Brier, Dolliver, and Rocky.

At this point things will be coming to a boil. Now add a few islands: Straitsmouth, Thachers, Milk, Salt, and Tenpound. It’s important that they be added in this exact order.

Let all of this boil for 3 to 5 hours and then let simmer. If it starts to boil over the top, cool it with a little Good Harbor water or Cape Pond Ice.

And don’t forget the two most important ingredients. Remember to stand back, before throwing in a Dog Bar Breakwater and a Greasy Pole!!

Lastly, allow this concoction to cool to taste and wash it down with an Ipswich Ale on tap. See you on Pavilion!!!