Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Cape Ann’s hearty and historical maritime heritage is known throughout the world.  One way we honor the traditions of our coastal culture is by celebrating it in our community and inviting others to join us, by doing so, we keep our connections alive and vibrant.  

The annual International Dory Races held in June in Gloucester and August in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia are a prime example of a tradition that lives on.  The 63rd meeting of rowers has now concluded but the goodwill and love for the simple craft remains strong.

Every year since 1952, two non-profit organizations have worked collaboratively to arrange the competition between Gloucester and Lunenburg.  Visit the Websites of the Gloucester International Dory Racing Committee and the Canadian Racing Dory Committee to learn more about these competitors and the fantastic boats that they pilot.

The history of the fierce but friendly competition of strength, speed and stamina has inspired the best dory boat rowers from Cape Ann and the maritime communities of Nova Scotia in a set of races that test the abilities of men, women, seniors and children. The twenty foot long flat bottom wooden planked boats designed to carry heavy loads of fish with room for two rowers were arguably first crafted in Amesbury by Simeon Lowell, founder of the Lowell's Boat Shop at the end of the seventeen hundreds.  Since then, strong dory building traditions continue in Gloucester and in several ports in Nova Scotia.

Since that time, these strong and functional boats were mastered by fisherman who powered the boats by oar overcoming the harsh and demanding North Atlantic.  The dory, under able command, has endured challenges of work and performed well for pleasure, even under sail.

The strong connections between these two fishing towns are separated by the Gulf of Maine and the Grand Banks but they are brought together by a mutual respect for the challenges of earning a living from the sea and a friendly rivalry to demonstrate rowing prowess. 

If you did not have a chance to see this year’s racing you still can come to Gloucester and watch the Oarmaster’s Cup Race on Saturday, October 11th at 10 AM at Maritime Gloucester.

Authentic, hardworking men and women are hallmarks of Cape Ann.  Come and enjoy a day with friendly and fun-loving people and you too may find yourself in a dory.


Monday, August 31, 2015

On your mark! Get set! GO! -Magnolia Road Race

On Saturday, August 27, I had the honor of being the official starter for the 39th annual Magnolia Road Race.  The event drew large groups of participants and spectators for both the adult 5K and children's 1K races.  Also in the crowd, were Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken and Ward 5 City Councillor William Fonvielle, there to cheer on an array of runners from across the state and a very strong Magnolia contingent.

Proceeds from the races went to the Magnolia Library Center, a non-profit community organization dedicated to enriching the lives of residents by providing educational and cultural programming and events.

It was a great morning for a neighborhood with the true spirit of community


Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Ice Cream Social at Wenham Council on Aging

Last Wednesday I had the pleasure of joining with the Wenham Council on Aging for an Ice Cream Social. A great time was had by all who participated, and it was fun to scoop ice cream with Rep. Brad Hill and his staff and Joe Tofalo of my staff, as we all enjoyed a refreshing treat and good company on a hot August day. Below are some pictures from the event.


Friday, August 21, 2015

Lane's Cove Fish Shack Fundraiser

The Lane's Cove Fish Shack is not only an important part of the fishing heritage of Gloucester and Cape Ann, its also a powerful icon with continuing importance in the life of the community and all of those who care about it. Yet, for the past several years it had been in need of repair and restoration, and its future was uncertain. Thankfully, in 2012 a dedicated group of energetic and committed volunteers, coordinating with the City of Gloucester, rose to the challenge of rebuilding the shack and giving new life to a building that is so much more than just a waterfront structure. Today, thanks to their efforts and the strong support of those in Lanesville and beyond, the revitalized fish shack stands as a symbol of the survival of commercial fishing and the power of volunteers and the community to get things done by working together. Last Saturday this group hosted a fundraiser featuring a cookout, live entertainment, tours of the shack and even swimming in the cove. Overall, this was a great day for Lanesville and I was happy to attend and see so many people celebrating a shack on the cove that means so much to those who know it. Posted below are some photos I captured at the event. For more information about the Lane's Cove Historical Association please click here: 


Wednesday, August 19, 2015

A seaside bench for "Woody"

Last Saturday morning, on August 15,  in Manchester-by-the-sea, I had the opportunity to join with local officials, Representative Brad Hill, members of the community , and the family and many friends of the late Frank Wood to dedicate a bench in his memory atop a dune overlooking Singing Beach. Through his many years as a police dispatcher and constant support for the community and a family dedicated to public service, Frank earned the respect, friendship and admiration of people throughout the town and well beyond. His wife Gretchen, also a distinguished public servant for many years in Manchester, told us at the ceremony that Frank always returned to the site of the bench at Singing Beach to benefit from the restorative and inspiring effects of observing this great natural resource. Now many others can follow that example. A special thanks to Joe Sabella, who led the effort to raise funds and procure and install the bench. That effort has created a meaningful place for all of us to remember Woody at his favorite beach.



Monday, August 10, 2015

Tarr Applauds Creation of Seaport Economic Council

Baker-Polito Administration Executive Order Advances Coastal Communities

Boston- Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) and Gloucester Mayor Romeo Theken were on hand as Governor Charlie Baker signed an executive order today which established the Seaport Economic Council.

Romeo Theken was appointed to the council which is tasked with protecting coastal assets and revitalizing maritime related opportunities to boost the economic vitality of the state’s 78 coastal communities. Former Mayor of Gloucester Carolyn Kirk, now Deputy Secretary of the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development was appointed Vice Chair of the Council.

“The revitalization of the council is critically important for our ports and coastal resources, and it signals the deep commitment of the Baker administration to supporting and strengthening them,” said Senator Tarr. “Working collaboratively with a wide range of stakeholders, the council can target important investments that will drive economic growth, support our commercial fisheries and carry out great maritime legacy into a bright future.”

“The Seaport Economic Council demonstrates our commitment to promoting economic prosperity in cities and towns of all sizes,” said Governor Baker. “We look forward to the robust role coastal communities can contribute to job and economic growth in the Commonwealth.”

The Council will be comprised of municipal leaders, representatives from coastal communities, trade associations representing the maritime economy, and senior level staff from the Commonwealth’s Departments of Transportation and Energy and Environmental Affairs.

“The expanded focus on jobs and economic growth in the maritime economy is good news for Gloucester,” said Gloucester Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken. “We are especially excited about prospects for projects related to the seafood industry which is a direct support to our fishermen.”

Click here to read the Executive Order establishing the Seaport Economic Council.


Thursday, August 6, 2015

Tarr Talk: Earned Income Tax Credit

Yesterday, we brought major tax relief to low-wage earning families with the signing of the Earned IncomeTax Credit Law. This video brings you to the State House ceremony and shares why this bi-partisan victory is important for the people of Massachusetts.