What’s really going on with this Harbor Walk anyhow?

Honoring our past while embracing our future — through stories.  Most of us think we know the past.  Old stories.  History classes.  But if we really want to honor our past, we must feel it, not just memorize it.

The Harbor Walk helps us feel by getting us to participate in the experience of bringing the past to life using bleeding-edge technology.  Watch this “Walking Cinema” video (designed to be played on your smart-phone while you walk) for just one example of why today’s Times Editorial says, “Through the new HarborWalk, the city has taken story-telling to an entirely new level …”

Ann Marie, of the Bandit Kings  (certainly part of Gloucester’s promising future) literally walks us into the past through old postcards woven with imaginative narration over current video of Gloucester Harbor so we can feel Howard Blackburn’s journey.

Why should we honor the past?  There are more reasons than you’d want to read in this post, so I’ll keep it to one:  It’s us.  It’s where we’ve come from.  The past touches the core of our being.  Honoring the past honors ourselves, which is necessarily the first step in helping anyone else, or trying to make the world a better place.

Why should we embrace the future?  (You can see this coming, right?)  It’s where we’re going — whether we like it or not.  It’s our destiny.

The Harbor Walk doesn’t just embrace the future with new technologies and gadgets.  It also does it through native flower gardens that bloom spectacularly — right now, this fall, next year and every year; and through state-of-the-art recycled materials and lighting mixed with ancient granite posts.

Most of all, the Harbor Walk embraces our future by bringing people to the waterfront — Old, young and yet to be born.  People will feel our past through these stories that fill us with the essence of Gloucester so each one of us can embrace our future grounded in our Gloucesterness and prepared for what ever comes our way.

You can experience the Harbor Walk starting tomorrow at 1pm with the ribbon cutting.  And you can continue the experience all weekend long.  See tomorrow’s Harbor Walk schedule here — and you can download the  full weekend Harbor Walk schedule here.

These schedules highlight a few official Harbor Walk activities, plus dozens of others (under the heading Step Out into Gloucester) that were going on anyhow and are proof that  Gloucester’s rich cultural heritage is alive today and will be carried into the future.

You can  help that process along by participating.  See you there .  . .

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