Video WCVB #Chronicle5: Along #MAshoreline scenic byway, a sisterhood of shops invites browsing

Katrina Haskell Essex Exchange CHRONICLE 2
STILL FROM CHRONICLE VIDEO, meet the women of the Byway, trail #4 The Essex Exchange, Essex (owner Katrina Haskell with client)

In case you missed the wonderful tv special about these local businesses, here’s the link to watch the video (it’s not on YouTube, yet or downloadable or I’d upload it here in the post): CHRONICLE WCVB Channel 5: Business Meeting: The Women of the Byway,plus stills from the Chronicle video (all images in this post are from the Chronicle story shot by Carl Vieira), and some of the transcription excerpt from the show:

CHRONICLE Business Meeting the Women of the Byway, Ipswich
STILL FROM CHRONICLE VIDEO, meet the women of the Byway, trail #5 Olde Ipswich Shop & Gallery, Ipswich

“THIS IS CHRONICLE ON WCVB CHANNEL 5. One, two, three…”We have a little bit of everything”…seven, eight, nine…”And we specialize in mid-century Danish modern furnishings…” Along this Massaschusetts shoreline, a sisterhood of shops invites browsing…”There’s room enough in this business for everyone”…


host Anthony Everett- “Good evening. Working Women are our focus tonight. Opening night of the 13th Annual Massachusetts Conference For Women at the Boston Convention Center (Boston). And Shanya Seymour is there now.

host Shayna Seymour– “Hi, Anthony! Well, thousands of women have gathered here to hear Gloria Steinem, and I just got off the stage with Bethanny Frankel and she’s going to join us a little bit later in this show. Now, the conference also features professional networking. Best selling authors are here to talk, as well as products from many different female entrepreneurs…NOW, many of those entreprenurs are women that (narrator) may have met on a very scenic north shore shopping trail!”

[cue to story produced by Clint Conley and vidographer Carl Vieira, and narrated by _____]

“(Narrator) The Essex Scenic Coastal Byway. Ninety miles of salt marsh and working waterfronts, dotted with famous clam shacks, antique stores, and open coastal dreamscapes, stretching from Lynn to Salisbury. The (Essex) Coastal (Scenic) Byway is ONE OF THE PRETTIEST, MOST INTERESTING and DISTINCTIVE DRIVES IN THE STATE. Now you can approach it from a distinctly feminine point of view. “It’s ten woman owned businesses in a ten mile stretch along the coastal byway.” A group of women have joined forces to market themeselves with a brochure, a sort of coastal byway treasure map. “It’s all in a straight line on our map and we call ourselves by number. I am number one on the map, so I’ll say, go [she points], number two is a mile up the street.”  

read the rest of the transcript-

Pauline Bresnahan of Pauline’s Gifts in West Gloucester hand painted gifts, custom made flags, and Pauline, of course. “People come hear and they know I can talk forever,” she jokes. “It’s a Gloucester thing. We love to talk. I will talk your ear off if I can [laughter].” One of her most loyal not to mention loquacious customers, the Gloucester Mayor, Sefatia Romeo Theken. “I don’t know when if you were ever younger and played Candyland?” she asked. “You walk in here and go, Whoa! It’s Candyland! Let’s start here at the gingerbread house and then we’ll go to this house and that one! And if you want the flags, she’s got them. And if you want the shoes, the slippers, the helmet…she has it. I have it she says. Why go out of town?” [Narrator continues,] “To check out the wother woman owned businesses, of course. The idea was born when the women found themselves repeatedly directing customers to each other. “It’s been a lot of fun. New friendships, developing relationships. I mean that’s what women do anyways, right? We develop our relationships.” Georgeanne Richards of Sea Meadow Gifts and Gardens in Essex specializing in local artists and craftspeople. “This gives us an opportunity, really to learn new things from different people.” Nearby the Essex Birdshop, co-owned by sisters, Susan Lufkin and her sister,  Shelly Nicastro. Featuring supplies for pets and wild birds, it is the only non-gift or home decor business in the brochure, but Shelly Nicastro sees no reason ALL have to be birds of a feather…”We do fit in with the other women. It has been a fun ride!” Number four on the map, the Essex Exchange seven different dealers under the same roof, owner Katrina Haskell. “We call it upscale resale. We have a little bit of everything. And very fairly priced. I like to put that out there!” Following route 133 north along the Byway into Ipswich, we find another business, The Old Ipswich Shop and Gallery, a cozy barn stuffed with American  folk art and estate collectibles. A half mile– and a couple of centuries away–an entirely different vibe. “This is Be Modern. We specialize in mid-century Danish modern furniture and furnishings. Everything is from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. It’s very focused. Probably not the best business model in the world, but the people who come in always come back.” Next door, a less focused, more eclectic collection. “It is kind of crazy. So welcome, to Anntiques! Where crazy is good, and old is new.” Ann Orcurt’s huge showroom features antiques to early Americana to Native American artifacts and jewelry, preservation of a sort. “We are sort of historians, but not a book historian. But thing historian.” History is certainly alive at our next stop in Rowley, Kathy Riordan, a retired air force colonel keeps shop at Serendipity at Todd Farm in a barn built in 1740. “When you walk into the front door, I want you to say, WOW, I remember that! My grandmother had that. I had that as a kid…” Vintage decor, old boardgames, and housewares, Serendipity trades on a homey comfort. “Recently I had one woman say, Can I move in? Can I stay for a while? …”—, you can stay. Until 5:00PM [laughter].” Last up, Lost Treasures, in Rowley. 15 different vendors under one roof. Owner Anne Thomas makes soaps and candles. She is more than happy to refer her customers to the other woman owned businesses on the Byway. “We send them to each other. There is room enough in the business for everyone. There really is. Beacause everyone is different.” 

Shayna – “The non-profit Essex National Heritage Commission came up with the idea of naming the road the Scenic Byway. They were so tickled pink and happy to know that the woman shop owners actually were using the byway as a marketing tool for their efforts! Anthony…”

Anthony – “And that is actually the reason the women received their award, one of them, a Pioneer in Partnership Award from the Essex National Heritage Commission at its annual meeting this fall. Up next…”

Link to Chronicle:  (it’s not on YouTube, or downloadable yet)

Fun route is easy to follow

#1 Pauline’s Gifts, Gloucester
#2 Essex Bird Shop & Pet Supply, Essex
#3 Sea Meadow Gifts and Gardens, Essex
#4 The Essex Exchange, Essex
#5 Olde Ipswich Shop & Gallery, Ipswich*
#6 AnnTiques, Ipswich
#7 Be Modern, Ipswich
#8 Lost Treasures, Rowley
#9 Serendipity at Todd’s Farm, Rowley

Byway CHRONICLE Business Meeting the Women of the Byway

3 thoughts on “Video WCVB #Chronicle5: Along #MAshoreline scenic byway, a sisterhood of shops invites browsing

  1. The scenic by ways and those along the route are like the motoring fun times on either ocean or vehicle. A childhood friend and I used his speedboat to explore back in the 60’s but do have to pay attention to tides and when weather kicks up. Great job to all the ladies involved here! 🙂 Dave & Kim 🙂


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