Beaver Pond, also known as Langsford Pond, is located on the outskirts of Cape Ann’s Dogtown. Exquisitely beautiful and peaceful, the pond is teeming with life, habitat largely created by the relatively new presence of the North American Beaver (Castor canadensis).

Beavers were absent from the Massachusetts landscape from 1750 to the early 1900s due to deforestation from agriculture and unregulated hunting and fur trapping. In the early 1900s forests began to recover as farmers abandoned their fields to work in cities. By 1928, a Beaver was found in Stockbridge. The public’s enthusiasm for the return of the beavers abounded and in 1932 three additional beavers from New York were introduced and released in Lennox. Today, Beavers have rebounded to the extent that some controlled hunting is permitted.

Beavers are ecosystem engineers and the ponds they create become wildlife magnets. Think about just this one example of the ecology of a beaver pond: woodpeckers make holes in the dead trees engineered by Beaver activity, Wood Ducks nest in the holes created by the woodpeckers, and raptors hunt the smaller birds.

More examples of how Beavers benefit other species of wildlife include favored nesting sites of both the Great Blue Herons and Osprey are the dead treetops of older trees in beaver swamps. Local species of turtles, the Snapping Turtle and the Eastern Painted Turtle, benefit from abundant vegetation created by beaver tree felling, which causes the forest to regenerate. Snapping and Eastern Painted Turtles prefer standing and slow moving water and hibernate under logs and lodges of Beavers. Painted Turtles also use floating logs to bask upon.

Like Niles Pond and Henry’s Pond, Langsford Pond is another superb example of a body of fresh water close to a saltwater cove where the combination of the two ecosystems provides shelter, nesting sites, and an abundance of food. While at Langsford Pond, I often see Great Blue Herons, swooping overhead, coming and going, between feeding grounds at the head of Lobster Cove and the shelter found in the vegetation surrounding the pond. Today, December 8th, a juvenile was seen on the far side of the pond, as were numerous Wood Ducks.

Since 1999, Langsford Pond has been protected by the Essex County Greenbelt Association. When I was filming there in October and November it was wonderfully overgrown and somewhat difficult to access. Recently, vegetation has been cut back, which makes walking to the pond’s edge much easier. Disease bearing ticks are present.

Some favorite Beaver food, ferns and American White Birch (Betula papyrifera).

beaver-pond-langsford-pond-gloucester-ma-copyright-kim-smithSimilar scenes as several in the film, only a month later without the vibrant fall foliage –“stick” season


Beaver Lodge



Rachel Rex Photo

(From left) Jarrod Martin, Joao Ramalho, Tyler Parisi, Gabi Goszczynska , Macaella Oliver, Katie Nugent, Lexi Ciolino, Chrissy Nugent, Sophia Pata, and Sierra Rudolph practice their gardening skills

The Gillnetter

MARIA KOTOB, Staff Writer, Editor

Growing your own food and understanding nature may seem ancient in today’s high-tech society, but it is a lot more important to the environment than you may think. Food requires an abundant amount of resources to transport, a concept many do not consider when grocery shopping.  GHS’s environmental science students are learning how gardening can help offset some of the consequences of a mass produced food supply.

The Environmental Issues course is for seniors who are a part of the dual-enrollment program with Endicott College. Taught by science teacher Rachel Rex, the class studies the environment and the big issues that affect it, such as pollution, loss of biodiversity, and the loss of natural resources.

“We had a lot of experience interacting with the environment, learning how to make it a better place. Ms. Rex is a good teacher, she’s taught us a lot. It’s a good class,” said senior Bridget Stevens.

The class is partnered with Backyard Growers, a nonprofit organization based in Gloucester whose mission is to provide affordable renewable food and teach the community how to garden.

“It’s a really nice tie in and it includes biology, chemistry, and number of sciences. It fits really well under the umbrella of environmental issues,” said Rex.


One Hour at a Time Gang Clean Up

Hi Kids:

Hope all are well. This week’s cleanup will be a combined cleanup with One Ocean.

Time:                    9:00 (note the time change)

Where:                 Rocky Neck Parking Lot

When:                  Sunday, December 11, 2016 (also note the Sunday not Saturday)

Please bring gloves and pickers if you have them.

Look forward to seeing all.

Take care


This Weekend in the Arts

The movie MANCHESTER BY THE SEA, from Director Kenneth Lonegran, is a huge success at the Gloucester Cinema on Essex Ave!

Over the weekend, the largest theater at Gloucester Cinema sold out.  In order to have enough seats for folks looking to see the movie this upcoming weekend, starting on Friday, December 9 an extra screen and evening show times has been added to make room for everyone who wants to see the film.  “Accommodating everyone comfortably is the goal and adding an extra screen will help alleviate the crowds in each theater,” stated theater owner John Williams.

Manchester By the Sea will no doubt be headed for Oscar nominations, thanks to Director Kenneth Lonegran.  Regardless of whether you live or work in the Cape Ann area or just love a well written, acted and directed movie, Manchester By The Sea is a  DON’T MISS FILM.  Now, with more screens and showtimes added for this weekend this is your best opportunity to see it locally.   Showtimes and days can be seen on the web site and tickets can be purchased on line or at the door.  For large group reservations or for additional information please feel free to call theater owner John Williams at 781-724-5368.


Middle Street Walk
A day of community holiday festivities.

image002.jpgOn Saturday, December 10, the Cape Ann Museum is pleased to collaborate with the many organizations of historic Middle Street for a full day of programs and events in celebration of Gloucester’s Historic District and the holiday season. Open houses, concerts, special tours and traditional decorations will be featured at multiple venues throughout the afternoon.

The Museum’s 1804 Captain Elias Davis House will be dressed up in period holiday decorations for public viewing throughout the day. Don’t miss the regularly scheduled 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. “Highlights of the Museum” tours or family crafts in the Museum’s Activity Center. Visitors will also have the opportunity to view the Museum’s permanent collections and special exhibitions, including Voicing the Woods: Jeremy Adams, Instrument Maker.

This lively day of programming is free and open to the public.

Participating locations include: Cape Ann Museum, Sawyer Free Library, Trinity Church, Unitarian Universalist Church, Sargent House Museum, City Hall and more!

Image: Ornament making in the Activity Center at the Cape Ann Museum. Photograph by Nicole Fandel.


Holiday Show 2016 poster.jpg


window poster_full page_GrandRe-Opening.jpg

Closet Case STUFFED – December 9

15252636_1755205791400309_8910572829404551100_oCloset Case returns after a two month hiatus and this time around everybody’s getting STUFFED! Short & Main will be hosting the madness and we are excited to be partying it up in their newly renovated Tiki Bar and Lounge upstairs. The closet doors open up at 9pm but we encourage you to head down for dinner and drinks prior to the event. We will be featuring some brainy and zany performances from a variety of New England talent of all shades and wildly creative minds.

Show begins tentatively between 10pm.  Brief intermission and second show by 11pm.

Performing Live:
New Rosies
Amber Shafft
Luna Vixxen
Bobby Beige
Ricky Diamond
Of Mermaids

Hosted by Gloucester’s own DeZiRe

Advance tickets $12 Get them here:

$15 at the door

Before: Gloucester Lobster Trap Tree awaiting painted buoys

Love the new wood signs heralding the Lobster Trap Tree lighting on Saturday, December 10th, just after a fun-filled day of Middle Street walk festivities.

The tree looks gorgeous already, but just wait until it’s trimmed with buoys hand-painted by children in our community under the direction of Cape Ann Art Haven and with the help of volunteers! The After is priceless and original. Thank you Cape Ann Art Haven and all who help to make this tradition happen in Gloucester. Wreaths and lights  on the street lamps are readied by the City,  Gloucester Downtown Association, and Ringo Tarr.


Canvas Prints available for Christmas!

I’ve had some requests for some prints for sale, so if you are looking for a little special gift of local scenes this Christmas, these 4 canvas’ are available.   They are 16×20 and are $175.00 each (contact me at   Or you can visit my website and order in any size/media you would like.   Cape Ann Giclee does all the printing (and shipping if needed!) and they always do a fabulous job!  image image image image

Friends and Family Night Downtown Gloucester Tonight- this Awesome ad from pop Gallery


Nichole’s Picks 12/10 + 12/11

Pick #1: The Middle Street Walk

A full day of fun local activities that culminate with the famous Lobster Pot Tree Lighting Ceremony at 4:30!


Middle Street Walk

“Where the Past is Present”

The Middle Street Walk is a community event organized by volunteers and supported by the City of Gloucester, Massachusetts, businesses and organizations in the Middle Street neighborhood, and generous private donors.

This year’s Middle Street Walk will be held on Saturday, December 10, 2016

The program of the day’s events are posted here so you will be able to plan your day and be able to get the most out of everything that will be going on from 9:30AM until the Lobster Pot Tree Lighting after 4:30.

Programs will also be available the day of the Walk at businesses and organizations participating in the 2016 Middle Street Walk.



Pick #2: Buoy Painting at Art Haven




Pick #3:  Charlie Brown Christmas at the Larcom Theatre

THE Christmas classic comes to life!

Everyone’s favorite holiday television special LIVE in BCT’s new stage production of A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS.  Join Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy and all the Peanuts gang as they produce their own Christmas pageant and ultimately learn the true meaning of Christmas.  Complete with the little Christmas fir tree, A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS is a present the whole family can enjoy!  Directed by award-winning Burgess Clark, BCT Executive Artistic Director.

A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS is presented by arrangement with TAMS-WITMARK MUSIC LIBRARY, INC. 560 Lexington Avenue, New York, New York 10022


To read more or purchase tickets CLICK HERE



As always, for a comprehensive list of family activities, visit our friends at North Shore Kid

Cape Ann Community Bulletin Board Listings For 12/8/16


Welcome To Cape Ann Community Bulletin Board

Joey C ~

A place where non-profit Cape Ann organizations can post press releases directly and then those press releases will be reposted to . This is not an advertising space for businesses, fitness or wellness organizations, or music listings.

The web address will be

To have your community organization news posted here, contact Joey C who will grant access for you to post directly.

Shop Cape Ann For the Holidays!

December 7, 2016 ~ chambercacc ~

The Cape Ann Chamber has launched a regional “Shop Cape Ann for the Holidays” promotion. There is no charge to participate, and all retailers are invited to join. The basic idea is to continually inform and remind both the local Cape Ann region, and our neighboring communities, to shop local this season, through the frequent posting of short Facebook videos, and to get you all to like and share the videos.

Please visit the Chamber’s Facebook Page to view the retailer videos we’ve posted to far.

Retailers can create their own videos using a smart phone and send them our way. If you create your own, please send your video via to If you’d like our help, give us a call at 978-283-1601.

We will post as many videos as we receive and tag your page with your video post, We ask that you all like and share all videos so that we maximize our reach and the Shop Cape Ann message.


GAAC Holiday Party Friday 12/9

December 7, 2016 ~ Michael Deneen ~


At our annual Gloucester Area Astronomy Club Holiday Party, Friday December 9, 8:00 pm at the Lanesville Community Center, we’re lucky enough to have Dr. Mario Motta with a presentation on his latest astronomy science project, an investigation of a white dwarf star (WD 1145+017) in Virgo that is orbited by the remains of a disintegrating small planet or asteroid.

The star seems to be tearing apart a small planet, leaving multiple small planetesimals and cometary trails in its wake. The story of the destruction of an actual planet is going to lead to a really interesting evening.

Mario’s been following and charting the disintegration, and is going to share his process and results with us on the 9th. It’s always fun to hear speakers who can report first-hand on actual astronomical events, and our December 2016 holiday party will be one of those rare nights.

Join us!

The Gloucester Area Astronomy Club meets on the second Friday of the month at 8:00pm at the Lanesville Community Center, 8 Vulcan Street, Lanesville. There are no dues or fees, and all are welcome. Find out more about GAAC at, on Facebook at, or on Twitter, @GAACster.

“Bert & I” Stories & Chowder Supper

Image ~ December 7, 2016 ~ maritimegloucesterprograms ~


Local Products Retail Store

Donna Marshall of Cape Ann Fresh Food is opening her retail place on Commercial St. (formally intershell) to feature locally made goods. Some vendors include; Tom Tens Beesworks, Bare Cheek Beauty, Grant Farms, Pa’s Pickles and more!  All products are created on Cape Ann.  Donna plans to open tomorrow, December 8th, and stay open through the weekend. The stores hours will be the same every weekend up until Christmas. 
We would be grateful if you could give us a little plug! Let me know if you need anymore information.
Thank you in advance!
Haley Allison