After suffering the extraordinary trauma of yesterday’s attempted capture, Mr. Swan was seen late in the day by friends, peeking his head out between the reeds. I stopped by to see him this morning at about 6:30, thinking perhaps I would catch a glimpse, and to my utter surprise he was sitting on the edge of the road that divides Pebble Beach from Henry’s Pond. Very deliberately, Mr. Swan was heading to the open ocean. He was obviously extremely weary from the effort, and from the previous day’s event, taking only a few difficult steps at a time, before plopping down, then a few steps more. Slowly and determinedly he made his way. 

Crossing the road between Henry’s Pond and Pebble Beach

Friends Lois, Serena, and Skip Monroe stopped by to offer food and encouragement. After at least an hour of effort, he made it to the water’s edge and took off toward Niles Pond (it usually takes him about five minutes to cross the road).

Making his way through the super yucky red seaweed.

Shortly after we got a call from Lyn that Mr. Swan had arrived safely at Niles Pond. I stopped by Niles on my way to work to see him and he appeared so much happier and relaxed than earlier in the morning. A true survivor, he was gliding and preening and vocalizing. Long live Mr. Swan!

In regards to how old is Mr. Swan, I was reminded by another great Friend of Mr. Swan, Skip Hadden, that Mr. Swan is actually at least TWENTY SEVEN years old!! When Skip arrived at Niles Pond in 1992, Mr. Swan was an adult breeding male with a family (swans do not begin to breed until they are at the very least two years old).

Regarding Mr. Swan’s foot injury, Skip writes, “He has injured this foot in the past. He fell off our roof after crash landing there in turbulent winds circa 2000. Heartily agree in daily monitoring as he is one determined character. He has a strong chance of survival if left to his own devices and our small efforts to assist from a distance.”

Mr. Swan at Niles Pond this morning! I hope he chooses to stay here to recuperate.

Exquisite Virginia Lee Burton art exhibition @GalleryA4 Takenaka Corporation Foundation in Tokyo Japan | loans from Cape Ann Museum and Sawyer Free Library

Watch this beautiful video tour to see a world class exhibition design in Tokyo for Virginia Lee Burton worthy of her legacy. The creative and smart installation looks stunning! The temporary summer show will be up through August. Gallery A4 is a public foundation established by Takenaka Corporation. Photos from Gallery A4 web site. 

There’s also an exhibition featuring the Art of Eric Carle up through July at the Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan. 

Gallery A4 Tokyo exhibit Virginia Lee Burton

a ‘must-see’ video of the installation

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Virginia Lee Burton in Gloucester

video caption: Virginia Lee Burton, children’s book author/illustrator, Folly Cove textile designer and founder, resided and worked in Gloucester, MA, where she created some of America’s most popular children’s books. She received the Caldecott medal in 1943 for The Little House. Other books include Katy and the Big Snow and Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel. Excerpts from her Caldecott speech. Music: The Little House, 1926, by Carrie Jacobs-Bond. 

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Find the link to PDF print out of Burton’s wonderful Caldecott speech

Virginia Lee Burton display at Cape Ann Museum 2011.

Virginia Lee Burton display at CAM 2011

Trinity Sunday Pageantry and Celebration

The D.E.S. (Divino Espírito Santo) Portuguese club Celebrated Trinity Sunday, with the over 700 year old Tradition of honoring the Holy Sprit.

“Our Gloucester” Project one of 89 NEA Our Town projects selected nationwide

National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu announced 89 awards totaling $6.89 million supporting projects across the nation through the NEA’s Our Town program. The Gloucester Lyceum & Sawyer Free Library is the lead organization for a grant of $50,000 to fund five cultural organizations in a project titled “Our Gloucester:  Discovering Who We Are Through the Arts.” The NEA received 274 eligible applications for Our Town this year and will make grants ranging from $25,000 to $100,000.

“The arts reflect the vision, energy, and talent of America’s artists and arts organizations,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support projects such as Our Gloucester, to cultivate vitality in their communities through the arts.”

Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken adds: “We are excited and honored to be recommended for a prestigious NEA Our Town Grant. It will provide a great means of bringing all of our communities together to tell the Gloucester Story and to celebrate our diversity, our culture of tolerance and caring, and our heritage in fishing and the arts.”

Five cultural organizations will partner in helping the community of Gloucester answer the questions: “Who are we? What is special about Gloucester? and, What in our culture and heritage is worth protecting and strengthening anew?” The arts, with their power to probe and clarify the deeper truths in society, will be the vehicles for this search and reflection, through both ensemble performances and community-wide discussions. Each partner will engage a broad cross section of citizens through a different art form — theater, music, storytelling, and literature. The answers to these questions can help lay the groundwork for community development initiatives and investments based on the values and assets of “Our Gloucester.”

The partner organizations and their roles in the Our Gloucester project are as follows:

The Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library will present a speaker’s series focusing on innovation in Gloucester. The series will continue a rich tradition of speakers at the library since the founding of the Gloucester Lyceum in 1830.

The Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation will present four weekend programs of music reflecting Gloucester’s diverse ethnic community at the historic Universalist Church.

The Gloucester Writers Center is planning three storytelling Fish Tales events, featuring Gloucester school children, ages 12–18; fishing, maritime, and schooner stories; and Gloucester neighborhoods.

Mosaic Gloucester is a large-scale community oral history and mosaic mural project. Launched with the support of the Gloucester Arts and Culture Initiative, the Mass Cultural Council, and Americold, Mosaic Gloucester will bring the people of Gloucester together to tell stories, make tiles, and create a visual depiction of Gloucester. The result will be a beautiful, large mosaic panel hanging in public view on Americold’s building at 69 Rogers Street.

The Folklore Theatre Company will bring together a collaborative playwriting circle of local artists and community members to craft a play centered around a historic meal of diverse Church members in Gloucester. Nine performances will take place in April, 2018.

The Gloucester Cultural Initiative, a new non-profit successor to the MCC-funded Gloucester Arts and Culture Initiative, the group which facilitated the Our Town grant application, will play the role of project manager for Our Gloucester.

For a complete list of projects recommended for Our Town grant support, visit the NEA web site at

To join the Twitter conversation about this announcement, please use #NEASpring17.

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We salute you!

Happy Flag Day!  #oldgloryIMG_3468

A little history from the website

The Fourth of July was traditionally celebrated as America’s birthday, but the idea of an annual day specifically celebrating the Flag is believed to have first originated in 1885. BJ Cigrand, a schoolteacher, arranged for the pupils in the Fredonia, Wisconsin Public School, District 6, to observe June 14 (the 108th anniversary of the official adoption of The Stars and Stripes) as ‘Flag Birthday’. In numerous magazines and newspaper articles and public addresses over the following years, Cigrand continued to enthusiastically advocate the observance of June 14 as ‘Flag Birthday’, or ‘Flag Day’.

On June 14, 1889, George Balch, a kindergarten teacher in New York City, planned appropriate ceremonies for the children of his school, and his idea of observing Flag Day was later adopted by the State Board of Education of New York. On June 14, 1891, the Betsy Ross House in Philadelphia held a Flag Day celebration, and on June 14 of the following year, the New York Society of the Sons of the Revolution, celebrated Flag Day.

Following the suggestion of Colonel J Granville Leach (at the time historian of the Pennsylvania Society of the Sons of the Revolution), the Pennsylvania Society of Colonial Dames of America on April 25, 1893 adopted a resolution requesting the mayor of Philadelphia and all others in authority and all private citizens to display the Flag on June 14th. Leach went on to recommend that thereafter the day be known as ‘Flag Day’, and on that day, school children be assembled for appropriate exercises, with each child being given a small Flag.

Two weeks later on May 8th, the Board of Managers of the Pennsylvania Society of Sons of the Revolution unanimously endorsed the action of the Pennsylvania Society of Colonial Dames. As a result of the resolution, Dr. Edward Brooks, then Superintendent of Public Schools of Philadelphia, directed that Flag Day exercises be held on June 14, 1893 in Independence Square. School children were assembled, each carrying a small Flag, and patriotic songs were sung and addresses delivered.

In 1894, the governor of New York directed that on June 14 the Flag be displayed on all public buildings. With BJ Cigrand and Leroy Van Horn as the moving spirits, the Illinois organization, known as the American Flag Day Association, was organized for the purpose of promoting the holding of Flag Day exercises. On June 14th, 1894, under the auspices of this association, the first general public school children’s celebration of Flag Day in Chicago was held in Douglas, Garfield, Humboldt, Lincoln, and Washington Parks, with more than 300,000 children participating.

Adults, too, participated in patriotic programs. Franklin K. Lane, Secretary of the Interior, delivered a 1914 Flag Day address in which he repeated words he said the flag had spoken to him that morning: “I am what you make me; nothing more. I swing before your eyes as a bright gleam of color, a symbol of yourself.”

Inspired by these three decades of state and local celebrations, Flag Day – the anniversary of the Flag Resolution of 1777 – was officially established by the Proclamation of President Woodrow Wilson on May 30th, 1916. While Flag Day was celebrated in various communities for years after Wilson’s proclamation, it was not until August 3rd, 1949, that President Truman signed an Act of Congress designating June 14th of each year as National Flag Day.

St Anthony’s Feast at the Sanfilipo’s (2017)

Angela’s story as told to Heather Atwood from the Blog “The Other Cape”:

Angela’s father was a German prisoner in WWII.  His mother prayed to St. Anthony for his return.  When he arrived back in their village, Angela’s grandmother vowed to always honor St. Anthony.  She continued celebrating the Feast of St. Anthony her whole life in Porticello.  Angela and her family now continue that tradition in this country

See Video:

Celebration with Friends and Family See Slide Show Below:

Celebration with Friends, Family and a smorgasbord of food:

Elder Abuse Awareness Rally @ June 14

Cape Ann Community

June is World Elder Abuse Awareness Month and June 15, 2017, is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. The Gloucester Police Department, SeniorCare Inc. and the Gloucester Council on Aging are holding a rally on Wednesday, June 14, to increase awareness of this growing issue in our society.

10,000 people turn 65 in the US every day.  That trend is going to continue for the next 20 years.  Our demographics are shifting, and we will soon have more elder people in the US than ever before.  At the same time that the population is growing, we know that a startling number of elders face abusive situations.  Every year an estimated 5 million, or 1 in 10, older Americans are victims of elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation. And that’s only part of the picture: Experts believe that for every case of elder abuse or neglect reported, as many as 23.5 cases go…

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Tomato Workshop with Backyard Growers!

Cape Ann Community

Tomato Workshop

Interested in learning how to grow the perfect summer tomato?

We can help! Join Backyard Growers June 22nd at 6:00pm for our Tomato Workshop! We will meet at Riverdale Community Garden at 1 Veteran’s Way in Gloucester, and discuss everything from disease, pruning and feeding techniques, and trellising. $10 for community members, free for program participants.

Reserve your spot here!

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