Rockport: From Nicole Schrafft


Nicole Schrafft writes-

Have you ever heard the expression, "It takes a village to raise a child"?  Well, while I wouldn’t say that the town of Rockport is actually raising our sons, I have, 2 years in a row, been touched and awed by how certain people in this town (our village)  have gone out of their way to help enrich our sons’ lives and make them feel special. 

This past Sunday, May 20th, will go down as one of those special days that our small family will never forget.  But, allow me to back up a bit.  Last spring, as my son’s 4th birthday approached, he asked to have it on "the Pirate Ship"…also known as The Formidable, in Rockport harbor.  Not having it in my nature to do things half way, I immediately started planning to throw together a party that he would love.  One of the final things I arranged was a treasure hunt that would take the children from the ship upon disembarking, through town, and ultimately to the Mill Pond Park where his his cake, etc would be waiting for the guests.  I fell in love with the town of Rockport all over again as several merchants stepped up and offered to hand out some treasures to the children along the way.  Employees at the Fudgery, Kenny from Roy Moore Lobsters, the owner of Tuck’s, and a manager from the Paper Mermaid didn’t hesitate for a moment to add to the children’s excitement and to join in the fun.  I remember hearing from guests how special it was that "the townspeople" played a role in Thatcher’s party and how nice it must be to live in such a wonderful community.  At the end of the day I was humbled by how fortunate we are to be raising our children in this great town. 

If one negative could be said about last year’s party, however, it would be that due to his party, Thatcher had to miss Rockport’s annual EMS day.  And, it is that unfortunate truth, that takes us to this year’s party.

Back in October we bumped into Rosemary Lesch, Rockport Harbormaster and EMS Director.  I mentioned to her how sad Thatcher was to have missed the event, that she plays a huge role in coordinating, because it fell on the same day as his birthday party.  Rosemary, possibly not realizing exactly the magnitude of the can of worms she was opening, simply said, "you should have his birthday party at EMS Day this year."   And with those simple words, Thatcher was hooked and my wheels were spinning.

As I was busy planning the details that were within my range of capabilities such as invitations, party favors, the cake, the decorations, etc., Rosemary, somewhat unbeknownst to me, was busy making sure that she and the Rockport EMS made Thatcher’s birthday more special than we could have ever asked for or even imagined.  While she was generous and accommodating from the beginning of the planning stages with important items such as tables and a tent, she kept a few secrets up her sleeve that absolutely made our son’s party one of the best days of his life.  From a banner that she had designed to wish Thatcher a "Happy Birthday" from the Rockport EMS (which still brings tears to my eyes and is now hanging proudly in his bedroom) to a fire truck and an ambulance of his own for his guests to tour and climb on.  From a surprise visit from Sparky and Smokey the Bear to helping to keep us informed of events happening during the actual EMS event so that Thatcher’s guests could attend.  Rosemary and the Rockport EMS took Thatcher under their wings and went far above and beyond just for the sake of making a little boy happy.  I can’t help but think "where else in this world?" and to once again thank our lucky stars that we are raising our children under their watchful eyes, in their helping hands, and surrounded by their kind, kind hearts.  While the things that Rosemary arranged for Thatcher may seem small to her, I am certain that they are acts of kindness that he will never forget and will help to shape the man he’ll become.  To know that there are such kind and giving people in his world is by far the best gift that we could ask for for him. 

Christopher Cutler Rich Animal Shelter-Ceremony

This morning I attended the ceremony for the new Cape Ann Animal Aid/Christopher Cutler Rich Animal Shelter.  It was a beautiful morning, great turn out, and showed the great dedication from so many in our community.

Cindy Dunn, Sunniva Buck, Mayor Carolyn Kirk, Representative Ann Margaret Ferrante, Don Fryklund, and Camilla Rich all shared what this shelter meant to them personally and all the hard work involved.

Animal Shelter Ceremony

(click on image to see more)

And after the ribbon was cut, we were able to see the new digs for all the very lucky cats and dogs. Such a spacious, bright, and light filled facility with enough room to save many furry lives!

Cape ann animal aid new Christopher Cutler Rich Animal Shelter

(click on image to see more)

The animals will be placed in their new home next week. I think they will be very pleased and thankful.


Crazy for Lobsters!

Sean’s (nickname ‘Spoonin’ Love’) Lobster Tatoo 

The Degelyse’s Tuffy and Sean delivering the daily catch to Captain Joe’s.

Although I am not an expert on the lobster’s anatomy this looks accurate, and beautifully rendered.

Read More about the adventures of Sean and Tuffy:

Sean Diving Off the Roof of Captain Joe’s

Degelyse Crew Captures Buddhist Lobsters

Allen & Dylan Estes ~ Father & Son make a special appearance at Giuseppe’s Sunday at 6pm

Here’s something you don’t see (or hear) every day — father & son performing  together with voices that blend this beautifully.  In this video, Allen & Dylan Estes sing one of Allen’s classic songs on his show Local Music Seen.  Tomorrow (Sunday) you can see them at Giuseppe’s — and they’re even better live!  You might want to call ahead to be sure you get a seat.  Music starts at 6pm.  Take your kid(s) and get inspired.

Now for tonight.  It’s time to get out and DANCE!  Gloucester is HOT tonight with all kinds bands ready to ROCK!  Take your pick or try to fit them all in.  Whew!  Check out the hot music lineup here.

Basic Safety and Survival Training – Commercial Fishermen

Basic Safety and Survival Training – Commercial Fishermen

The  Fishing Partnership, New Directions Southcoast, the Massachusetts Fishermen’s Partnership (MFP)  and Coast Guard Station Gloucester will be providing a one-day course covering some of the most important aspects of fishing vessel safety, broken down into 6 modules: Fire Fighting and Emergency Communications; Man-Overboard and Helicopter Hoist Procedures;  Flooding and Pump Operation; Life raft ,flares and EPIRBS; Survival Suits;  and Basic First Aid. In addition, a Coast Guard Rescue Helicopter from Cape Cod will be on display. The entire course and lunch are provided at NO COST to the fishermen. Registration forms can be download here or can also be obtained at Station Gloucester or the MFP office in Blackburn Park. We also ask everyone to bring their own survival suit; if you don’t have a suit, one will be provided. Seats are limited so register soon and BE SAFE!
When: June 22, 2012
Where: USCG Station Gloucester 17 Harbor Loop, Gloucester.
Time: 8:00AM to 3:00PM
BOSN Luis Munoz
Commanding Officer
STA Gloucester


Terry Weber’s First Ever Barbeque

Hey Joey,

Last Sunday I held my first ever BBQ. Because it was my first one, I kept it small to reduce the anxiety I generally have before big ‘events.’ But there was no reason to worry. It was a perfectly sunny day and the food was good. One of the things that made it great was the company of a few friends and my friendly neighbors. The view wasn’t bad either…I realized again why I love living here.

Now that I am a pro, I am already looking up the prices to host clambake for 100 people…;)


For more pictures, click here:


Community Stuff May 26th

Hi there Joey, loved all your images from Italy…I am going to have my own Gallery Show on Rocky Neck June 30 thru July 6th, please add this poster to your blog when you get a chance…thanks and look forward to seeing at one of the mug ups.


The  Holy Family Womes Guild is having a Plant Sale/Strawberry Festival June 2, 9 a.m. to 2p.m. but we need help we need plants, seedlings etc. We are also having a General Store that day and will be selling perserves , pies, cookies and goodies, and also we will have delicious Strawberry Shortcake.  It will be held on the ( Saint Ann’s) Rectory lawn the Prospect street side weather permitting or the if raining it will be in the Parish Hall. if anyone can donate plants, baskets, perserves etc please contact Jane Marshall 978-283-5111.

  Rockport High School Jazz Band

                Will be preforming May 30th 1PM at the

                Rockport Senior Center

                58 Broadway

                All are Welcome

Jenna Powell twoJenna Powell image 1

Contemporary Art at the White-Ellery House: Jenna Powell

The Cape Ann Museum is pleased to present Sounding Patterns, a one day contemporary art installation by Jenna Powell at the historic White-Ellery House on Saturday, June 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The house is open that day as part of 17th Century Saturdays, an Escapes North program. This program is free and open to the public.

Jenna Powell documents and responds to Cape Ann’s Nautical Industry through the lens of an artist, historian, manufacturer, and exhibit preparator. Industrial materials, process and presentation provide the framework for her investigations that expose trace layers of history.  She records and reinterprets embedded memories of trade, invention, and production inherent to sites including Star Island in Rockport, and the Tarr & Wonson Paint Manufactory in Gloucester.

Powell grew up in her family’s textile manufacturing business in Essex County Massachusetts.  She was educated at The School of Visual Arts, NYC holds a Masters in Art Education from Lesley University, and is completing a M.F.A from AIB @ Lesley
University in Boston.  Powell apprenticed at the Johnson Atelier Foundry where she received technical training in all phases of fabrication, ceramic shell, and resin-bonded sand casting.  Powell also worked as an exhibit preparator for zoos, aquariums and
museums throughout the country.

The White-Ellery House is one of a handful of surviving First Period buildings in Massachusetts. The house was placed on the National Register of Historic Sites because of its design, materials, and workmanship, and its plank frame construction. The house was built in 1710 for the Reverend John White, Gloucester’s first settled minister, and exhibits an elegance and refinement commensurate with White’s esteemed position in the community. The second owner of the house was James Stevens, who kept it as a tavern until 1740, at which time it was sold to the Ellery family. In 1949, when plans were unveiled showing Route 128 traversing the Town Green, the house was taken by the City of Gloucester by eminent domain, turned over to the Cape Ann Historical Association, and moved safely out of the path of the highway. The present location of the White-Ellery House is at 245 Washington Street.

Funding for these programs was made possible through a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, which promotes excellence, access, education and diversity in the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences, in order to improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents and to contribute to the economic vitality of our communities.

The Cape Ann Museum is located at 27 Pleasant Street in Gloucester. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sundays from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. The Museum is closed during the month of February, on Mondays, and on major holidays. Admission is $10.00 adults, $8.00 Cape Ann residents, students, and seniors. Children under 12 and Museum members are free. The Museum is wheelchair accessible. For more information please call: (978) 283-0455. Additional information can be found online at