The past week Eastern Point has seen a wonderful influx of wildlife, in addition to the beautiful creatures already wintering over and migrating through.

On Tuesday before Thanksgiving, a great raft of Ring-necked Ducks joined the flock of Buffleheads and Mallards at Niles Pond. Five chunky American Coots have been there for over a week, and two female Ruddy Ducks have been spotted.

American Coot

Fifteen Harbor Seals were sunning and basking on the rocks at Brace Cove on Wednesday, along with several Bonaparte’s Gulls that were diving and foraging in the waves. The increasingly less timid Lark Sparrow is still here, too.

Lark Sparrow

Great Blue Heron agitating the Ring-necked Ducks

The most enigmatic of Great Blue Herons criss crosses the pond a dozen times a day but, unlike last year’s fall migrating GBH, who allowed for a closer glimpse, this heron is super people shy. He has been here for about a week and was present again today.

This morning I watched the four beautiful Mute Swans depart over Brace Rock, in a southerly direction. Will they return? Mute Swans migrate from body of water to body of water within a region. Perhaps they will return, or they could possibly have flown to a nearby location–further exploring our Island.

The four had not returned to Niles Pond by day’s end. If any of our readers sees a group of four Mute Swans, please write and let us know. Thank you so much!


Leaving Niles Pond this morning and flying over Brace Cove.



It’s that time of year when the awesome David Brooks and Crew are once again constructing Gloucester’s famous and fabulous Lobster Trap Tree. Friday morning, the base of the tree and entrances were laid out and tomorrow, Saturday, construction will be complete. The lights won’t go up for several days.

This year David is leaving it up to the community to vote on whether warm white or multi-colored lights are preferred. The voting ends at 6pm on Tuesday, December 3rd.

Please vote your preference for Gloucester’s unique and beautiful Lobster Trap Tree. Thank you!

Jason Burroughs, Shawn Henry, Shane O’Neil, and David Brooks laying out the tree.

From Gail McCarthy Gloucester Daily Times, Gloucester’s Christmas Parade

The annual Gloucester Santa Parade is getting ready to set the holiday stage for children of all ages when it starts its procession from Jodrey State Fish Pier this Sunday, Dec. 1, at 3 p.m.

The parade ends at Kent Circle, at the intersection of Essex and Western avenues, where there will be music and opportunities for photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus. But this year, the tree lighting will be a bit different. There will be no formal speeches or stage erected, and the judges will give out the awards from the judges float, which will be moved onto the green.

Other than that, organizers plan for the usual festive nature of this annual event.

Linzee Coolidge of Gloucester will lead the parade as the 2019 Grand Marshal, said Joe Ciolino, one of the organizers.

“Linzee continues the Christmas spirit all year


Coolidge and his late wife have provided significant gifts through the Dusky Foundation and the Belinda Fund charitable organizations to The Open Door, Cape Ann Animal Aid, Addison Gilbert Hospital, the Gloucester Fishermen’s Athletic Association and its restoration of Gloucester High School’s Newell Stadium, and the Cape Ann YMCA for its building fund for a new home on the Fuller School site, among other organizations.

The tree once again comes from Nova Scotia, this year from the Harris Christmas Tree Farm in the town of Lower Ohio, among the communities in the Municipality of the District of Shelburne.

This year Ringo Tarr and Nick Curcuru traveled the roughly 600 miles to Nova Scotia to pick up the tree.

Tarr explained that in exchange for the tree, the Topsfield Fair in recent years has donated money for the Canadian community to purchase small trees from a nearby nursery that will adorn their main street for the holidays.

“The only thing the Harris Christmas Tree Farm asked in return for their donation of the tree was to have this tree donated in memory of the late owner, Michael Harris, who died in January of this year,” Tarr said.

In that similar spirit, Tarr hoped that this year’s Kent Circle gathering after the Santa parade would be in honor of his late wife, Cathy Tarr, who died just weeks ago on Nov. 1.

As for the parade and Kent Circle gathering, Ciolino, who calls himself the “chief elf,” said the music from the bands is an important part of these events.

The featured bands are the Docksiders, sponsored by the Institution for Savings; the O’Maley Innovation Middle School band, sponsored by Gloucester Rotary Club in honor of the late Rudy Macchi; and the Boston Fireman’s Band, organized by Gloucester’s David Benjamin.

“The music sets the tone,” Ciolino said. “This is a holiday parade, with no political statements — there’s already too much politics in our lives. This is for the children. I want everybody to feel good and that’s what the parade is all about. It’s about being together and getting the season started.”

Ciolino noted that each year he is thankful for the efforts of many people who make it happen and for the support he sees along the parade route.

“What amazes me is that after we take off from Parker Street, we go past Pratty’s and they come out of that bar and the looks on their faces, they are like little kids. We go by many bars and when we go by the Crow’s Nest, they are all outdoors watching too,” he said. “No matter how old you are, it all reminds us of our childhood, of a happy time.”

Ciolino said the parade usually arrives at Kent Circle about an hour after it starts. At the circle, the judges will award first, second and third place for the floats in addition to an honorable mention.

Also at the circle, he said the Girl Scouts will do some singing as will some student actors from Gloucester Stage Company’s Youth Acting Workshop. The Gloucester Rotary’s Polio Bear also will be part of the festivities.

Gail McCarthy can be reached at 978-675-2706, or at gmccarthy@gloucestertimes. com.

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Three Ways To Buy My Waterfront images series Prints- Cape Ann Maker’s Market , Cape ann Giclee website and Off The walls at cape Ann Giclee

Online Option:


Off the Wall At Cape Ann Giclee Option:

Drive to Cape Ann Giclee 20 Maplewood Ave Call For Hours Phone: (978) 546-7070

Cape Ann Giclee Will Have Them At Cape Ann Makers Market Saturday 11/30

1 Kondelin Rd Gloucester MA




No Days Off

I sat and enjoyed a cup of coffee with the Man at the Wheel yesterday morning while Thatcher volunteered at the American Legion to help ensure that everyone enjoyed a Thanksgiving meal.  He was watching the harbor as fearlessly and relentlessly as always.  No days off for him.  Thank you to all who worked yesterday while the rest of us enjoyed a day off with family. We are thankful for you.


Magnolia Cribbage League

Cape Ann Community

Magnolia Cribbage League starts its winter session on Wednesday, December 4 at 6:30pm at J.D. Meyers Pub, 24 Lexington Ave, Magnolia. New players are welcome to join in this friendly game of cribbage. $45 covers 10 weeks of play plus a dinner and cash prizes.  If you cannot commit to a 10-week session then consider substituting for a regular player. Arrive at 6:30pm to sign up and learn more about the league. Call Andy Heinze at 508-596-3857 for more information.

crib board

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