Video clip- Midsummer Nights Dream at East Gloucester Elementary From James Dowd

Most of what I think I do as a father is spend huge amounts of time reminding my kids about obvious things like that they can’t go outside in the rain wearing just socks on their feet. If someone said to me at that moment: "You kid and her class are capable of pulling off a pitch-perfect rendition of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream" I’d laugh out loud.

"You mean the kid outside in the rain with the socks on?"

But this is why we have schools and great teachers, to remind us occasionally that there are deep, deep wells of talent in those kids.  Beyond what we can imagine.

This clip is from East Gloucester Elementary fifth grade play, last night.
Tonight is sold out, but there may still be tix for the Sat matinee at 2.

Head To The Fort Square Café ASAP! The Lucky Table Is Back!!!!

Ron Ross has refinished this classic tabletop with boats from Gloucester’s past fishing fleet and they are installing it in the window seat.  There has been 3 $15,000 winning scratch tickets scratched at this table as legend goes  (hence the title lucky table). 

While at the Fort Square Café you can get one of Heidi’s OUTSTANDING muffins, listen to the single most entertaining breakfast counter man in the business Rusty Shatford and try Heidi’s latest creations the stuffed breakfast pepper.

That table has a ton of history on it with the old photos and stories from Gloucester’s fishing fleet so get there early and try to snag “the lucky table!”

Click on the photos for larger views

My “This is Gloucester” DVD’s are available for sale as well if you haven’t got one yet.


I’ll be donating 5% of the proceeds from the sale of this DVD to The Saint Peter’s Fiesta to rebuild the Greasy Pole.

20 Chapters in all-

  • ReplyGloucester at Dawn Featuring Music By Dan King
  • 2011 Friday Greasy Pole
  • 2011 Jr Womens Seine Boat Champs Donna Del Mare
  • 2011 Saturday Greasy Pole Featuring Footage From Adam Bolonsky & Sam Hartson
  • Building The 2011 Greasy Pole Shrine
  • Down The Fish Hold Of The Sanfilippos Captain Domenic
  • Gloucester Zen 6/3/11 Good Harbor Beach at Dawn
  • How Your Lobsters Were Harvested- Aboard The Trapper John
  • Blue Lobster Landed In Gloucester By Lobster Boat The Connemara Bay
  • Lobster Molting In Real Time At Captain Joe and Sons
  • Monkey Balls or Sea Squirts -European Invader Ascidiella Aspersa
  • One Inch Baby Lobsters Filmed and Released
  • Rare Golden Sea Robin Landed Videotaped and Released
  • Triple Pincer Claw Lobster
  • The Back Shore 3/16/10
  • Salting Herring At Cape Seafoods
  • Gloucester Zen 6/3/11 Good Harbor Beach at Dawn
  • Lobstermen Matt and Mark Ring Prepare A Trawl For The ’11 Season
  • Fontana Family St Joseph Novena 2011
  • Ferrante Family St Joseph’s Novena 2011

Here are some screen shots from the DVD menu-




Hammond Castle

This place is such a jewel in our great city.  Here is a little information on the Hammond Castle.   Hammond Castle is located on the coast of Gloucester, Massachusetts. The castle, which was constructed between 1926 and 1929, was the home and laboratory of John Hays Hammond, Jr. Mr. Hammond was an inventor who was a pioneer in remote control and held over four hundred patents. The building is a collection of 15th, 16th, and 18th century architectural elements and sits on a hill overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.  At present, the castle operates as the Hammond Castle Museum, with Hammond’s collection of Roman, medieval, and Renaissance artifacts, and exhibits about his life and inventions. Tours are self-guided, and visitors may explore the eight chambers, an elaborate courtyard, two towers and an elaborate ballroom.

Hammond Castle Archway

March 27, 2012 Archway

What a view

March 27, 2012 Hammond Castle

Reminder Horribles Parade Fundraiser – Saturday


Please join us for the Fishtown Horribles Parade Fundraiser with Frank Santos, Jr. Saturday March 31 @ Cruiseport Gloucester.  Doors open at 7pm for the silent auction and the show starts at 8pm!!  Tickets are still available. Contact us at or 978-631-9015.

Auction Items:

  • Basket from Ryan & Wood-includes a bottle of Vodka and a bottle of Gin
  • $50 gift certificate to Coveted Yarn
  • $25 gift certificate to Topside Grill
  • Hat & Sweater from House of the Raven
  • Angle statue from The Weathervane
  • Necklace-Natual stone and sterling silver
  • Baked goods from Laurie Lufkin
  • One week at Camp Spindrift 2012-YMCA
  • Gloucester DVD-Good Morning Gloucester
  • Birthday party for 10 at the Firehouse- Gloucester Fire Dept.
  • Family fun pack to Topsfield Fair
  • 2-Four packs to the Shriners Circus in April
  • 4 passes to each of the Boston Derby Dames Roller Derby 2012 games. These will be auctioned off by date, there are 6 dates.

Go to the Horribles Parade Fundraiser Saturday night then pop on over to the GMG Spring Fling at Bodin Historic Photo on Main Street after.  Both events are going to be great times!

Did You Know? (Turkeys are Intelligent)

Contrary to popular belief, wild turkeys are intelligent, inquisitive, affectionate, sentient beings.  Turkeys also have a large vocabulary and have been found to have twenty distinct and specific vocalizations. Also contrary to popular belief, wild turkeys can fly, and are capable of flying at speeds of up to 55 miles per hour for short distances and can travel on the ground at speeds of 25 miles per hour.  They also like roosting in trees, as these birds were doing on River Road.  I’ve seen them walking around all over Cape Ann, but had never seen them in trees before.  There was a rafter of them (what a flock of turkeys is called) very high up in the trees.  When I spotted the first one, I thought it was a vulture because of its size and the way the setting sun was glinting off his/her wattle.  Then I spotted the others and realized they were turkeys.

In anecdote after anecdote from the 17th through the 19th centuries, the wild turkey was characterized as showing an amazing friendliness towards people. Wild turkeys would walk right up to the early settlers. Sadly, the birds likely met with death for their curiosity and friendliness.  It is good to see that today turkeys can once again freely roam our neighborhoods without fear.

E.J. Lefavour

Top Five Recommended Magnolias for Cape Ann Gardens

Does your magnolia look like this:

Magnolia blossoms ruined by hard frost

Rather than this:

Magnolia soulangeana ‘Alexandrina’

Today begins a series on the top five magnolias for Cape Ann gardens, based on many years of observing and writing about this most highly appreciated species. Magnolias are one of the loveliest of springtime flowers, with silky buds developing into waxy fragrant goblets, and with their stunning display juxtaposed against bare branches, few trees are more breathtakingly beautiful than a mature magnolia in full glorious bloom. If you have a favorite magnolia, please write and let us know why!

Foremost in recommending magnolias for Cape Ann gardens are that the flowers have a beautiful shape that hold up well in inclement weather, that they are intensely fragrant, and no less importantly, that they come into flower a bit later in the spring, or early summer. I had formerly recommended the Star Magnolia (see Joey’s photos Blooming Baby) however, Star Magnolias (Magnolia stellata) bloom the earliest of all the magnolias and they are the most susceptible to damage from a hard frost. Their bloom time is fleeting, at best, and the flowers are often quickly ruined.

Today’s recommendation is for the Saucer Magnolia (Magnolia soulangeana x ‘Alexandrina’). The saucer magnolia is the magnolia of Boston’s Commonwealth Avenue fame.  A simply stunning and  mature pair can be seen in Gloucester flanking the front entryway to the Classic Revival brick house on the way to Eastern Point (opposite Niles Beach). The outer petals of ‘Alexandrina’s’ flowers are a richly colored deep pink, shaded white and pale pink inside, with a lovely fragrance. This variety has an upright habit, which makes it ideal for standard tree forms. Plant in full sun, to very, very, light shade.

Tip –if you hold fragrance in as high regard as do I, go to the nursery when the species of tree that you are shopping for is in full bloom. Oftentimes a tree may identified as a particularly fragrant variety, but then again it may not be accurately identified. Through no fault of the nursery– perhaps tags were switched, or perhaps their distributor has not accurately labeled the plant; whatever the case, take your nose from tree to tree.

No group of trees and shrubs is more favorably known or more highly appreciated in gardens than magnolias, and no group produces larger or more abundant blossoms.”

~  Ernest “Chinese” Wilson, botanist and plant explorer

Global climate change is creating extremes in weather worldwide. The horticultural problems created by a spring cycle of freezing-thawing-freezing temperatures are only going to increase. The gardener’s best defense is to plant species that can withstand these new horticultural parameters.

Miranda Russell takes Graceland to her heart

This video features gimmesound Artist of the Week Miranda Russell’s wonderful cover of Paul Simon’s Graceland.  She and her band really make this song their own.  Watch and see what we mean.  You can catch her at Shalin Liu, where this was filmed, with the same band next week.  Get tickets here.

Eight great music choices tonight.  See full music lineup here.

If you’re not sure what to do, come down to the Gloucester House for the Berklee Jazz & Roots concert featuring Ed Saindon on vibes and Berklee’s Dean of Performance Matt Marvuglio on flute .  It’s only $10 and supports the new scholarship fund that will send a Gloucester student to music school.  See more details here.

Winner of The Two Tickets To Tonight’s Berklee Jazz and Roots Concert Jeannette Kresowaty

Jeannette won the tickets by subscribing to GMG according to this post


Tonight’s the night!


Don’t miss the first public concert in this extraordinary series featuring Berklee professors, alumni and students to benefit a new scholarship fund that will help send a Gloucester student to music school.  See details here.

Listen to some of Ed Saindon’s music here.  This show features a special tribute to Herb Pomeroy.

Berklee Jazz & Roots in Gloucester is sponsored by

You don’t get to see jazz of this caliber very often, so don’t miss out!

ROCKPORT – The Shalin Liu presents Celtic Americana string-band Annalivia on Wednesday, April, 4 @ 7 PM. Free Concert

There seems to have been some confusion on the correct date of this concert. It is as follows.

Wednesday, April 4 @ 7 PM.

Annalivia’s unique sound features twin fiddles, strong vocals, driving guitar, mandolin, clawhammer banjo and double bass. The band grew out of the potent Boston traditional music scene which has yielded many cutting-edge Celtic, bluegrass, Old Time, jazz, and everything-in-between bands. Annalivia is unique in that the band members have strong backgrounds in both American and Celtic styles. The members of Annalivia also contribute their own original material– instrumentals played on fiddles, guitar, mandolin, and banjo, and songs written by lead singer Liz Simmons and guitarist Flynn Cohen.

The members of Annalivia are Liz Simmons, Flynn Cohen, Emerald Rae, and Stuart Kenney, and this show will feature special guest Ivonne Hernandez standing in for Mariel Vandersteel. All are virtuosic on their instruments and have long histories with traditional music, ranging from bluegrass to Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton and Old Time. These styles play a large role in the interpretations of their material which includes inventive, quirky fiddle tunes and lushly arranged songs. Their unique style has an Americana flavor, yet with the detail, precision and energy of their bluegrass and Celtic backgrounds.

Emerald Rae holds a Scottish fiddle championship and has studied and played alongside the giants of Cape Breton music including Natalie MacMaster and Brenda Stubbert. Flynn Cohen has played with many of the Irish music masters including Cathie Ryan, John Whelan, Seamus Egan, Aoife Clancy, and Frank Ferrell and Joe Derrane, as well as American music greats Scott Nygaard, Adrienne Young, and Ruth Moody, among others. Liz Simmons has made a name for herself in the northeast as an accomplished singer of Celtic and American traditional styles, and has performed alongside John Whelan, Karan Casey, Aoife Clancy, and North Cregg. Stuart Kenney performs in the acclaimed French-Canadian band Raz de Marée, and spent many years performing in the wildly popular contra-dance band Wild Asparagus. Special guest Ivonne Hernandez is a five-time Grand North American Fiddle Champion, and has performed with Mark O’Connor, Alan Jackson, Gloria Estefan, Jann Arden, U2’s the Edge, Natalie MacMaster, Earth Wind and Fire, Steve Winwood, Burt Bacharach, Juan Louis Guerra, Rosa Pasos, Ben Hepner and legendary film composer Howard Shore.

Roger Goodell of The NFL Is the Pro Sports Commissioner that The Others Should Aspire To Be

For those of you non- sports fan Roger Goodell is the commissioner that handed out a real punishment to protect his league, the NFL. There are many sports analysts who are crying out that Roger Goodell has too much power to which I say phooey.

This quote from USA Today-

Sean Payton, the New Orleans Saints coach who knew that his players were participating in a bounty program designed to take out top opponents and lied to the NFL about it? Gone for a year. Mickey Loomis, the general manager who knew as well? Suspended for half the season. Gregg Williams, the man who devised and implemented the head-hunting program? Gone at least for one season, perhaps longer. Here’s hoping it’s forever.

Nearly three weeks ago, Goodell said this: "It is our responsibility to protect player safety and the integrity of our game, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated."

My wife, The Mrs goes absolutely batshit crazy when Major league baseball would hand out $100,000 fines and first second and third strike offenses to MLB players who would test positive for steroids.  $100,000 to a player that is taking home $20,000,000 is peanuts and the unfair advantages of a player taking steroids virtually insured that every kid aspiring to be a MLB player and the vast majority players within the league would take steroids.  so how is that a punishment or deterrent?

Her argument which I whole heartily agree with  is that if they wanted to really ban steroids they should have a zero tolerance rule.  They didn’t have to institute it in the first year.  They could have given players a year to flush that shit out of their systems.  But we watch as it drags on and on over years and years.  Instead of saying to the players union, this is the way it’s gonna be- you get caught with a banned steroid in your system and you are gone.  Done for the season.  Finito.  No pay.

How hard is that to understand that if the result that they want is to ban something that is illegal, they should enforce that for the betterment and health of the entire sport?

You don’t like it?  Hit the bricks.

Gloucester resident, SSGT Peter Greeke was welcomed home by his wife, Melanie and daughters, Jacee and Libby

Norman Barr writes-

Gloucester resident, SSGT Peter Greeke was welcomed home yesterday from overseas by his wife, Melanie and daughters, Jacee and Libby. Melanie is my daughter.


Community Stuff Friday


Cape Ann Artisans

2012 Spring Open Studio Tour

On Cape Ann in Gloucester and Rockport, Massachusetts.

Cape Ann is home to a thriving arts community, one of the oldest in the country. For twenty-nine years Cape Ann Artisans has been inviting the public to visit their studios during their Open studio weekends. This year’s spring tour will be held June 23rd and 24th from 10 am to 5 pm each day.

Brochures with route maps will be available at the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce, the Rockport Information Booth on Rte 127 and at each of the artisan locations. A bright magenta Studio Tour banner marks each location.

Bring friends and family to visit the studios and meet the 21 Cape Ann Artisans. Make a day of it! Enjoy the extraordinary beauty of our coastline and sample our local seafood.

Come find out why Gloucester was named 3rd in Top 25 Arts Destinations for cities under 100,000 by American Style Magazine

June 23-24 from10am to 5pm daily

The self-guided tour along the scenic coastline of Gloucester and Rockport presents a unique opportunity to meet 21 professional artists and see their work in the setting in which it was created. The work represented includes: pottery, painting, sculpture, photography, mosaics, jewelry, hand made glass beads, and weaving. Several of the artists will be demonstrating their working process during the tours.

Our website has more information, a map, a copy of the 2012 brochure and a list of participating artists and examples of their work.

Please share this email with anyone that might be interested in joining us!

About the CAA

The members of Cape Ann Artisans, while diverse in our art and expression, share a common sense of place on Cape Ann. Whether we were born and raised in the area, left and returned from other places, or found Cape Ann later in life, we draw our aesthetics and our inspiration directly from the color, light, and vistas of our environment.

International Dory Racing Committee Reminder From Erik Dombrowski


Cape Ann Military Support Group

The Cape Ann Military Support Group is "Springing" into action with a special event on Thursday, March 29 at 7 p.m. at the Frank Ritvo Veterans Center, 12 Emerson Ave. Gloucester. 

Cape Ann resident, Teresa Tocantins will present a new program called "Yoga Warriors" for all Veterans and their families.

Most people have heard about the benefits of Yoga, but  a recent study conducted on our Iraq troops has shown that  special yoga methods  can reduce PSTD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).

The new "Yoga Warrior Method"  is a pro-active way of managing combat stress and improving  the focus of our returning troops who may be trying to manage the more silent wounds of battle. Ms. Tocantins will discus how sleep habits, irritability, concentration, anger management, and intrusive thoughts of images, loneliness, self blame and sadness have been improved.  It is a way for our troops as well as stressed family members of returning troops to find healing in relaxing.

We are fortunate that Ms. Tocantins has chosen to make this program available here on Cape Ann.  Let’s all spring together and welcome all our Vet’s from all wars  home to such a great program.

Sarah VanAuken

Cape Ann Military Support Group