After twenty plus years in need and many years of planning, the Gloucester High School field house deficiencies are no more. Restoration is underway on this 1.6 million capital improvement directed by Gloucester Public Works.
The old bleachers are being replaced with top notch product.
Issues with the original concrete and under laying have been resolved. “The new work will be done correctly.” This mean new hardwood flooring. New usable track. Gloucester DPW hired Capital construction for this big project.
Views of the progress July 2020– so exciting!
The old bleachers were punched out all over, holes like confetti. Rumor one I’ve heard was shot put tosses caused the damage (whether practice misses or on purpose, I’m not sure) Rumors two is the holes were a result of indoor baseball and softball practice. What do you think caused the holes? Cue up GMG poll.
Whatever the results, counting on community taking care of the new fieldhouse.
The Benjamin A. Smith Field House, aka Smith Field House, was formerly dedicated to Albert Bachelor.
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In 1952*, Art Jewelers on 117 Main Street (now Unwind) in Gloucester, Massachusetts, offered GHS female graduates a FREE sterling silver teaspoon in a pattern of their choice.
Pauline Bresnahan writes about a great conversation she had with her mother this week: “We were talking about running a small business on Main Street today compared to when she was growing up here. She told me about the following story which I had not heard before. My Mom Graduated GHS in 1952. Art Jewelers on Main St. offered each Female Graduate a FREE Sterling Silver teaspoon in a pattern of their choice. My Mom picked Blossom Time, an International Silver Co. pattern. She and my Dad were married in 1953 and by then purchased 7 more teaspoons. They were gifted more place settings as a wedding gift.”
Other businesses catered to students, too. Gloucester Pants Co. at 211 Main Street advertised “special rates to students” in the yearbook. Nichols Candy and Luncheonette was across the street in 118 Main Street, where Franklin is now. There were several jewelers on Main Street. (Pauline worked at Blanchards and remembers her boss taking them to Cameron’s for celebrations.)
*How many possible spoons? The GHS1952 senior class size looks to be > 250 inyearbook.
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Well done super boosters – Grace Ferrara and family, Carlotta , and Diane Horne – for organizing such a special event and all that went into it! The Gloucester House meal and service were outstanding. Thanks to the generous folks who bought raffle tickets and game day snacks and many volunteers and supporters. There was serious swag and a wonderful celebration for a great season. Congratulations players.
A few scenes from the GHS boys soccer dinner banquet at Gloucester House, Gloucester, MA.
Head Coach Armando Marnoto
JV Coach Jason Rutkauskus
courtesy photos from Kristin and Peg:
Link to slideshow
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Gloucester varsity soccer is out in the first round of the conference series. Lynnfield 1 Gloucester 0. Gloucester Daily Times Nick Curcuru coverage accompanied by Kirk R. Williamson photos here
“…From there, Gloucester adjusted by switching to three strikers. But Lynnfield countered that by bringing back a fifth defender to clog up the passing lanes.
“We knew adding an extra striker would put some extra pressure on their defense,” Marnoto said. “And it did but they added an extra defender and when they won the ball they got it out wide. That gave them time to regroup and kept us from getting into our shape.” Both goal keepers were also a factor.” – Nick Curcuru excerpt
Kirk R. Williamson photos: Gloucester’s Robert Mugabe chases down a loose ball along the sideline while being tangled up with a Lynnfield player ont the sidelines in Tuesday’s Division 3 North First Round meeting.
The team is half way through its 2019 season. Pump up the volume! For Joey and other spectators: mark your calendars with 4 more chances to see season home games.
Gloucester Daily Times sports writer, Nick Curcuru, describes the boys varsity soccer team as one not to miss: “Gloucester is not only good, it is one of the most exciting teams in the conference as it can light up the scoreboard and put up goals in bunches against any defense.” excerpt from The Contenders article. His report on the Malden game, Resilient Fishermen, is a great read about that exciting game.
On July 18, 2019 the architectural firm, Dore & Whittier, was slated to reveal associated rough costs on new school(s) buildings– such as construction costs, swing space costs, and eligible reimbursables– with the School Building Committee. (See summary of City Council requests July 9, 2019 here.) The meetings are public. Associated costs were not transparent for the public. Instead a dollar sign rating system was illlustrated pictorially, like so:
Why were rough estimate details cut from the presentation? A few reasons were provided, namely “MSBA does not look kindly” on public disclosure because
The MSBA aims to have the best possible build based on educational needs and goals rather than cost. Publishing amounts can taint the bidding or decision making.
The public may be too attached to numbers they hear and/or be confused because of the (lengthy) timeline. By the time shovels hit the dirt the final bids will be different.
Other districts post all associated costs, why not Gloucester? Why are the design/build firms awarded these contracts charged with bidding out the cost evaluations on projects, especially ones greater than 5 million? Why assume this process is the only way to go about it?
Michele Rogers with Dore & Whittier announced that there were “no surprises” following review of the cost estimate comparisons. “Eliminations were easy; the most expensive were eliminated.” She concluded that this presentation was the second and final per their contract for services related to this Feasibility Study Phase. [This one feasibility study phase contract total cost is: $569,075 ($284,296 for the feasibility study and $275,704 for the future schematic design. One environmental study add on is $9075). Requests for a breakdown of all studies and plans related to new schools–at least since 2012– have gone unanswered by the school committee and architectural firm.]
The next step is to compile and deliver submission to the MSBA, the state agency tasked with reviewing Gloucester’s application for new schools.
Q. Next steps? “Submittal allows us to do geotechnical site evaluation and other necessary investigations (like traffic and environmental studies), and more design. Submittal helps us narrow down and leave behind areas we won’t bother with as we know…We’ll need to tighten the building design and handle specialized pieces. We’ll proceed from 9 options to 6 very quickly. ”
Q. What is the submission? “It’s a thick binder, maybe 10- inches thick, with all our reports to date, the educational program narrative, the space summaries approved earlier, etc.” Will the MSBA require a presentation? “No. The MSBA will review the binders within a two week turn around; then we have a two week turn around to respond.” Dunn commented to make sure the City see that. The MSBA will decide on November 13th or November 20th whether to make a recommendation to allow this proposal to proceed to the next phase: schematic design. “Or they’ll push back and request more information.” The MSBA “will not require more work on many options as the scoring was so low. They’ll be concentrating on the top 3 or 4 options.”
Tom Ellis was present related to a staff change; Roger who managed the design phase is moving out of state so the team for Gloucester will need to be reorganized. They met with MSBA July 17, 2019 to discuss this change. (Was someone from the city at the meeting?) Chris Tremblay will be assisting. “MSBA doesn’t like surprises,” Ellis remarked.
The costs and application should be public before it’s forwarded to the state. Chairman Jonathan Pope said he’d forward the pricing.
Double click on pictures to enlarge the slides for the “East Gloucester Elementary School Building Committee 7.18.19″. Color coding continues as in yellow = East Gloucester; Blue = Vets; and Green = Green Street area.
Slide 1 title slide East Gloucester consolidation costs prepared by Dore & Whittier and School Committee building committee
Slide 2 agenda
Slide 3 EGS options A1,A2
Slide 4 EGS options B1,B2,B3
Slide 5 EGS options C1, D1
Slide 6 EGS options E1, E2, E3 all new all all 440 students
Slide 7 Vets options F1, F2 both NEW 440 students
slide 8 Green Street options G1, G2 NEW and 440 students
Slide 9 – pricing on 15 options in pictorial dollar signs
Slide 10- pricing on final 9 in pictorial dollar signs
Slide 11 – Scoring on 14 options
Slide 12- scoring criteria note solar emphasis new dded
slide 13- scoring on final 9 for state
slide 14 REMINDER from Dore & Whittier- this is their final presentation
slide 15 end slide
And the winner (high scoring) is…
one location at Vets and both at Green
“By October we’ll be back on schedule. Yes, MSBA has seen the schedule and is pleased.”
And when! “Light Up Mattos has rented the Fraternity Club, 27 Webster Street, Gloucester, MA, for a Listening Post on July 25th, 2019 at 6:30 to talk about the possibilities of a 440 student population in Mattos field area, Green Street and East Gloucester school. Together we can ask questions of each other and really see what we all think of having such a large population of students, and perhaps find new ideas, too. Please come and be heard and listen. Together we can make a difference. We will be looking for volunteers to put information flyers in neighbors doors in Mattos field area, Green Street area, West Parish area and East Gloucester area to get the word out. Proposed schools affects us all!” – Light Up Mattos
Gloucester schools | Elementary: East Gloucester, Veterans Memorial, West Parish, Beeman, and Plum Cove; Middle: O’Maley and fields; High School: GHS and fieldhouse
UPCOMING DORE & WHITTIER presentations for NEW SCHOOL(S) AND LIBRARY:
The next new school meeting is TONIGHT- July 18, 2019. Associated costs for limited options slated to be revealed. Goal for submission to the state agency, MSBA, is August 1, 2019. Meeting held in the School admin offices at Blackburn. 5pm.
Catch up on new school building process in these prior posts:
July 25, 2019 public community discussion all welcome! Fraternity club 6:30PM
July 18, 2019 Dore & Whittier slated to reveal associated rough costs on new builds/construction costs/swing space costs, and eligible reimbursables, for presentation to school committee (no public comment) 5PM
July 9, 2019 Dore & Whittier Presentation to City Council (no public comment) scenes (this post) and link to 1623 Studios/Cape Ann TV taping of City Council meeting July 9, 2019 here questions from city councilors following presentation begin at 27:57 minutes
Oral Communications july 9, 2019:
“Joseph S. Mattos Jr. grew up right up the street from Mattos field at 9 Linnett Place. He came from a patriotic family and chose the Army for his love of animals. Mattos field was dedicated to Joseph in 1935 and was rededicated last October 5th. the 100th. anniversary of his death. Lt. Maxwell Parsons grew up at 65 Mt. Pleasant Ave. Lt. Maxwell served in the U.S. Army. Lt. Maxwell Parsons Playground was erected by the Gloucester Playground Commission in 1935 Ganine Nancy Doucette grew up at 19 Mt. Vernon St. The Park was dedicated in 1986 in her memory. Mr. John Gus Foote was instrumental in the dedication. Private First Class Doucette wanted to serve her country and almost could not. She died serving her country as she wished. I am their voice as they have none. I am here today to speak for them all. Please don’t take their dedicated open space. Thank you. Patti Amaral”
July 8, 2019 GDT article by Ray Lamont announcing presentation of 9 options to City Council noting that still nothing is final and no costs or reimbursement details will be available HERE
June 26, 2019 School Commitee votes to accept options 1623 Studio (Cape Ann TV) taping HERE questions begin following Dore & Whittier presentation and prior to vote at 1:05 into taping (Joel Favazza, etc,”sounding the alarm about these sites but continually told hold on calm down this is not the time to ask” and now we’re at final options no discussions. “Foreclosing opportunity (for alternatives etc) despite telling community for months there would be chance.” He mentions 12-15 months but the questions about the sites and process go back well before 2015; see selected roundup below)
June 20, 2019 School Building Committee votes to accept 9 options to present to school committee (no public comment) HERE
June 20, 2019 Scenes and recap of new building plans presentation June 17 including full text of readings by Patti Amaral and Mary Ann Boucher HERE also reminder that school building committee to vote on this day for the options to push forward
June 17, 2019 Reminder notice of Councilor Memhard Ward meeting about new schools (open to public comments) HERE
June 13, 2019 Dore & Whittier presents New school plans site options for East Gloucester and Veterans Memorial Gloucester, MA, to school building committee- includes comments by architectural firm about each site (no public comment) HERE
“A round up of Pros and Cons related to the recent West Parish construction and its use and operating costs since being built might be helpful. Some West Parish feedback that made the news ranged from small inconveniences (no dishwasher) to larger concerns about design (despite ample site the gymnasium was not designed with enough space for spectators, the design of the parking lot did not take into account ease in snowplowing and numerous vehicular/traffic snafus). There was no discussion about these proposals within a broader context of all the school properties, all the elementary schools, merging with Rockport, what happens with development of the older sites if Schoolhouse Road option is undertaken, etc.” Big built out schools haven’t demonstrated a reduction in operating costs. The state is considering policy for livable, innovative, green and walkable communities. You can’t alter special places, build mega schools that everybody needs to drive to, and have walkable, quintessential New England neighborhoods and green communities. Can we request a modified incentive to best match our geography and green goals?
October 2018 GMG post MSBA school committee school consolidation update HERE
October 2017 City Begins Quest for new Merged School: Search on for funding for East Gloucester-Veterans study, Gloucester Daily Times article by Ray Lamont HERE
In February 2017, the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA), a state agency, moved the Gloucester school consolidation proposal further along in its funding process. The MSBA cost page is here where you will find information and data about schools built either a)2008-2013 or b) 2014-current. West Parish is in there. (List of MSBA projects completed for Gloucester) MSBA splits out designer and project management phases from the final build which means you have to go back and forth between documents. Expected life span for new buildings is 40 years.
September 27, 2016, GMG post, Ward 1 Community Discussion about new elementary schools at East Gloucester Elementary School HERE
September 14, 2016 GMG post school consolidation meeting at West Parish HERE
January 2015 joint City Council/School Committee meeting; presentation by Dore & Whittier HERE Option A Maintain all four buildings as they are with same number of classes per grade; Option B Make additions and renovations at all four schools; Option C Remove Plum Cove or Veterans and make additions and renovations at other three (2-3 classes per grade); Option D Remove Plum Cove and Veterans and make addition at Beeman (4 classes per grade), with 3 classes per grade at East Gloucester
The next Sawyer Free new building meeting (also Dore & Whittier)
folds into the Trustees meeting 7/23/19 and specifically capital projects Wed 7/24/19 8:30AM.
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No. 5 seed Gloucester boys basketball vs. No. 13 seed Reading Sunday 1pm
What:State Basketball Tournament Division 2 North Quarterfinals
Where:HOME GAME!! Benjamin A. Smith Field House, Gloucester
When:Saturday March 2, 2019 due to snow storm game moved till Tomorrow Sunday March 3, 2019 1pm
Tickets:“Just a friendly reminder that there will be a $5.00 fee for all students and a $7.00 fee for all adults. These fees are accessed by the MIAA. Everyone will have to pay. GOOD LUCK GHS BOYS BASKETBALL 🙂 “- Rosa
Fast Facts: Gloucester beat Danvers in overtime 67 to 58. Matt Montagnino scored 31 points. There was a ton of home town support in the stands (including Gloucester Hockey team after their own tough game the night before). Teenagers sported black t-shirts; tomorrow is beach attire. Reading beat Wakefield in a close game, final score 56 to 53. Winner tomorrow moves on to play Belmont in the semifinals.
“Did You Know?: Gloucester is looking to make just the program’s third ever appearance in the sectional quarterfinals. The Fishermen ventured to the quarters in 2000 and 2006. Gloucester is also hosting a first round home game for the first time since 2006 (the team hosted a preliminary round game in 2015)”
No. 5 seed Gloucester boys basketball (14-6) vs. No. 6 Danvers (10-10)
What: Division 2 North First Round
Where: Benjamin A. Smith Field House, Gloucester
When: Wednesday (7 p.m.)
Update from Rosa about Tickets: “Just a friendly reminder that there will be a $5.00 fee for all students and a $7.00 fee for all adults. These fees are accessed by the MIAA. Everyone will have to pay. GOOD LUCK GHS BOYS BASKETBALL 🙂 ”
What’s at stake: The winner advances to the Division 2 North Quarterfinals later this week against the winner of Tuesday’s first round game between No. 4 Wakefield and No. 13 Reading.
Points per game: Gloucester, 60.8; Danvers, 54.9.
Points against per game: Gloucester, 57.7; Danvers 62.7.
Gloucester’s leading scorers: Marcus Montagnino, 19.2; Ben Oliver, 17.3; Matt Montagnino, 9.3.
Danvers’ leading scorers: Justin DiTomaso 15.5; Armani Vlaun, 12.3.
Gloucester’s key to victory: Play strong defense. The Fishermen can find good looks at the basket against any team, and it can also play a up tempo or down tempo. The key for Gloucester is on the defensive end of the floor. If it defends the perimeter the way it did in its 86-38 win over the Falcons last month, it will be in great shape to move on.
Danvers’ key to victory: Keep up offensively. Gloucester can score from inside and out against good defense. Danvers is going to have to find a way to match Gloucester’s offensive output. The Falcon’s shot selection and ball movement must be on point on Wednesday night, they can not afford a mediocre offensive game.
Update- Gloucester for the win! 67 vs 58
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Upcoming symposium hosted by Gloucester Meetinghouse foundation at historic Gloucester UU Church (Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church) May 19, 2018 FINDING COMMON GROUND: A SYMPOSIUM ON AMERICAN CULTURE, GUN VIOLENCE AND THE SECOND AMENDMENT
SATURDAY, MAY 19, FROM 2 TO 6 P.M., AT THE GLOUCESTER MEETINGHOUSE
Spurred by national concern about mass shootings, a symposium in Gloucester on Saturday, May 19, will put a fresh focus on gun violence, examining both the intent and application of the Second Amendment and the differences among us that led to an impasse in addressing the problem. The afternoon program, at the Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church, is sponsored by the Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation. It will include:
Students from Gloucester High School speaking about the growing youth movement against gun violence;
A presentation by former Essex County District Attorney Kevin Burke on issues surrounding the intent of the Second Amendment’s language on the right to bear arms and its application today;
Remarks by Mark Nestor, a Vietnam veteran who as commander of Gloucester’s American Legion Post 3 oversaw a unanimous vote by Post members favoring tighter regulation of firearms;
Discussion by Cape Ann clergy on the moral imperative for action with diverse approaches;
A panel discussion that will include John Rosenthal, a Boston businessman and Gloucester resident whose national organization, Stop Handgun Violence, campaigns to reduce firearms deaths.
The keynote speaker is Colin Woodard, author of “American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America.” The Washington Post described this book as “a compelling and informative attempt to make sense of the regional divides in North America in general and this country in particular.” MaineBusiness.com said it “explodes the red state-blue state myth” and describes how conflicts between cultures “have shaped our country’s past and mold its future.”
This symposium is occurring as our country experiences outrage over the Parkland, Florida, high school shooting and a powerful new youth movement is taking shape with the intent to make sure it never happens again. Gloucester Meetinghouse Foundation vice president Sandra Ronan describes it as “an event to help restore civic dialogue by seeking common ground on an emotional and difficult subject.” Richard Prouty, a lifelong educator and former director of Project Adventure in Beverly, will be moderator.
The program begins at 2 p.m., is separated into four segments with 15-minute breaks, and will conclude at 6 p.m. with a ceremonial ringing of the church’s Paul Revere bell, for freedom. The community is welcome to attend all, or only some, of the segments. Written questions will be welcomed and reviewed for replies from the panel in the final segment.
The program is free with voluntary donations invited. Refreshments will be available. The event is part of the Meetinghouse Foundation’s 2017-18 Concert & Lecture Series. The nonprofit, IRS-recognized Foundation was founded to help preserve and increase public use of the 212-year-old Meetinghouse. The structure is listed in the National Register of Historic Places and the church founders are recognized for their role in establishing religious freedom in Massachusetts, well before that guarantee was made in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The Meetinghouse is located at the corner of Middle and Church Streets in downtown Gloucester and has easy access for persons with disabilities at the side entrance at 10 Church Street. Parking is available on the Meetinghouse Green, in lots nearby in the Central Gloucester Historic District, and at St. Peter’s Square.
Julie Smith, Director of Athletics, shares great news about the Gloucester High School Cheerleading team:
“Please take a moment to watch the amazing Gloucester High School Cheerleading team and their winning routine, out of a field of 18 teams, at the NEW ENGLAND championships yesterday at Southern New Hampshire State University. According to Coach Erica Mitchell, yesterday’s competition was the “Super Bowl of the New England competitive cheer world.” The team captured back-to-back State Titles in the Fall and Winter seasons. The New England Championships are a culmination of the two seasons and only occur at the conclusion of the Winter season. This is the program’s first New England Championship since 2007. The team departs for Florida where they will compete in the National Championship this weekend.”
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You can join in Stephanie Benenson’s fascinating big vision, Harbor Voices, a public art and cultural piece that’s made from light, sound and community participation. Part of the project is a large-scale and temporary LIVE light & sound installation which will happen on ten minute loops from 4-8pm on Friday December 8th, and Saturday December 9th, one of many featured events for the 2017 Middle Street Walk. Harbor Voices will be held inside the Kyrouz Auditorium in City Hall , 9 Dale Avenue, Gloucester, MA.
Come experience a sweeping ocean of sound, stories and light, drawn by the voices and acts of generosity of neighbors and friends.
Benenson, a Rockport native and North Shore based fine artist, received a prestigious and competitive RISD grant to create Harbor Voices. Benenson collected over 100 stories in eight languages of recent and ancestral immigration to Cape Ann. For the past year she led (and continues to lead) practical and creative storytelling sessions and workshops at area schools like Veteran’s Memorial and Gloucester High School, as well as community organizations and centers such as Sandy Bay Historical Society. Students talked with Benenson about “their ancestors* and families bringing cultural heritage to Cape Ann.” She said that kids mentioned “family members that started businesses here (like Jalapenos, Sclafanis, and other cultural destinations on Cape Ann)…and how meangingful that was to them…and people that they had deep respect and admiration for…” They discussed “family recipes, music, food and how immigration historically has made American art and culture come alive.” Mayor Romeo Theken was the first story collected. Other Cape Ann storytellers outside of the schools and non profit partners include: Jean Testaverde (Portuguese fishing ancestry), Ingrid Swan (Swedith quarrying ancestry), Heather Lovett (descendent of Roger Babson), Sal Zerilli (Awesome Gloucester and Rockport), Jan Bell, Buddy Woods, Susannah Natti (Finnish and descendent of Folly Cove designer), Rich Francis (GHS teacher), and Celestino Basille (GHS teacher).
Depending upon age and preference, stories were written, recorded, or drawn. All were mixed into materials and audio that will choreograph connections directly into the light installation, and an enlarging community. At first, Benenson thought the light might guide any audio. Instead voices continue to guide the light.
Every story and act of generosity is linked to the installation and transformed into light.
Blurring the lines between public art and social sculpture, LIVE happening and virtual action, Harbor Voices emblematically presents stories, shared connections and actions. Participants of all ages are encouraged to interact with the project www.harborvoices.com and its installation– to bathe so to speak in a community of vibrancy and waves of interconnectedness and support. Benenson adds that from 4-6PM during the two days of this installation iteration, “children will be offered a small flashlight to engage with this artwork, allowing them a tangible moment to consider their part in this interconnected network of community and local history by creating their own beam of light.” Also, before the installation opens to the public, one hundred Gloucester High School students –including some who have already added into the piece– will come to City Hall to experience Harbor Voices.
Benenson’s promotion for Harbor Voices launched in September. Leveraging attention for this remarkably ambitious project is an essential component as more involvement means more impact. Straight away it fostered community and brought opportunities. For example, Benenson spoke about the project and shared audio of the stories with Rose Baker seniors, Gloucester Rotary and the Cape Ann Museum’s Red Cottage Society. Someone from Beverly has already underwrittten support for a class at Veteran’s Memorial Elementary School. She spoke about the project with Joey as part of GMG podcast #253
As a third generation Cape Ann artist, Benenson is especially excited to “create art and conversations around our cultural heritage and our contributions to the vibrant mix of people that live on Cape Ann.”
On November 7, 2017, 19 children from Gloucester performed with Dawn’s Studio of Dance at Disney Springs at Walt Disney World in Florida. The Gloucester dancers did a fantatstic job performing with Disney Performing Arts under the direction of Gloucester’s instructors, Dawn Koller and Tiffany Smith. The 2017 dancers were a multi-age group, includingseniors from Gloucester High School as well as students from O’Maley and some of the local elementary schools. Many friends and family from Gloucester watched the performance and were thrilled to see Gloucester “sparkle on the Disney stage.” Dawn’s has been bringing dancers for years and some of these kids have performed at Disney World many times before. About 4 years ago, they were chosen to lead the parade at Magic Kingdom over all the other dance studios that were there to be in the parade.