Mayor Kirk is quoted a number of times promoting her vision of our port supporting both fishing and marine science, saying some of the $150 million Congress might appropriate should be used for “Programs that might attract those other uses that allow you to maintain a smaller fleet, and maintain an infrastructure for that fleet, and sit side by side.”
Everybody who’s seriously working on attracting marine science to Gloucester knows we need more than a port. We also need a thriving cultural economy in order to attract the workers that power marine science. Most of these workers are young, single PhDs who work very long hours and want to go out after work — and on weekends — for food, drink and music. They want to feel surrounded by culture. These people think they want to live in Cambridge. What they may not know is that Gloucester has a burgeoning cultural economy. Just look at all the live music available this weekend — and it’s supposed to be the dead of winter!
We’ve got momentum. But in order to grow a sustainable economy for Gloucester’s long-term, we have to grow our cultural economy a lot more. That’s where you come in. Think of Gloucester FIRST when planning what to do at night and on weekends. Not sure where to eat? Check out this HUGE list of restaurants. Check the live music schedule. You’ll likely find music for every taste. Want to enrich your life and the lives of your kids? Check out this impressive list of galleries, studios, museums, theatres, etc. Think you need to drive to the mall? STOP! Check this out and think again.
The secret to growing our cultural economy without losing our soul is to honor our past and embrace our future. That’s precisely what Fred Bodin does. His store honors our past by helping to keep the core of our history and culture alive. And now, he’s taken to filming the future. Here he is filming Jon Butcher with Dave Brown, Dave Mattacks and Wolf Ginandes at Jalapenos on Tuesday singing Sam Cooke’s classic Change is Gonna Come — how perfect it that! Boston rock star Jon Butcher moved to Gloucester. Let’s get out and support his decision, prove him right, boost our cultural economy and — most importantly — have a blast doing it!