Tag Archives: Kids

Way to be, Jack Ass!

I guess for someone, stealing is easier than working for it.  And from kids nonetheless. Allow me to explain.

If you’ve browsed any of my previous posts here on GMG, you’ve probably come to know a few things about me.  You probably know that I’m long winded (does that actually apply to writing?) and you’ve probably gotten to “know” my two young boys….and maybe you’ve learned that they love the ocean.  More than loving it, they work hard at being budding little lobstermen, and they’re pretty passionate about it.

If you haven’t seen it yet, maybe this will help paint the picture

Young and Salty

My boys, along with their three great friends…on our friends’ boat, go lobstering typically twice per week all summer long.  With only ten traps, they certainly don’t do it to make money….they do it because they love it.  And, they do it for Lobsterfest!  Once each summer (maybe twice if we’re lucky)… we gather our families and some of our local friends, and we have a feast to end all feasts. More importantly, we have laugh after laugh, in one of the most picturesque towns I know.  It is, without a doubt, one of our favorite evenings of the entire summer.

We check the tide chart….we check our busy summer schedules…and we pick a day.  This summer…that day was Saturday.

The kids feel tremendous pride that their hard work supplies the Stars of the Show:  The Rockport Harbor Lobsters!  They feel tremendous pride that our guests….friends who have watched them grow, learn, laugh, and cry…gather to enjoy a quintessential summer evening and “oooh and ahhhh” over their bounty! They feel tremendous pride in being such a huge part of such a special tradition.

So, maybe you can imagine our shock and dismay to discover that THE lobsters had been stolen from the water on Friday night.  Holding tank and all.  Gone.  As a friend put it, “It’s like losing your uniform the night before the Big Game.”  The night before Lobsterfest.

I get that maybe the thief wasn’t aware that those lobsters had been slowly gathered by a group of dedicated children…and their two amazing dads.  Two dads who take the time to show those kids how to haul and set their gear.  Two dads who, while they love lobstering with the kids, may actually prefer to cast a few rods, set an anchor at the beach, or play a round of golf on a few more occasions, rather than continuously tend to the traps.  Or maybe they wouldn’t rather do those things, either way, that isn’t the point.

The point is, Stealing is wrong…and I’m pissed.

“The children must be crushed!” you may be thinking.  Well, actually, the children don’t know.  Luckily, those two amazing dads also had the wherewithal to not let the children know that someone had stolen their lobsters.  They would have been beyond devastated.  They would have been hurt.  They probably would have been confused.

Those two amazing dads also didn’t want our guests to know that they had to scramble and buy lobsters in the eleventh hour.  They certainly didn’t want any guests to run out and purchase lobsters themselves….not that any of those guests would have minded!  Lucky also is that Cape Ann is the type of community where friends rally for each other.  Lucky also is that, having lived here forever, those two amazing dads have people who were happy to help them and that getting enough lobsters to feed our friends was possible.

So, Lobsterfest was a giant success.  Those little “lobsterkids” are none the wiser and, while we’re still mad, it would take more than a small time thief (Jack Ass) to ruin a wonderful summer evening with such amazing friends.  Still, shame on them.

IMG_3359 IMG_9141 IMG_9153 IMG_6258

Great Wolf Lodge…Pretty Great For Sure

We went way over the bridge this week and took a quick getaway to the brand new Great Wolf Lodge in Fitchburg.  Prior to the onslaught of some heavy duty advertising recently, you may not have heard of the Great Wolf Lodges, but I’d been hoping to get to one of their other locations for quite some time now for a short family vacation.  Last year I was psyched to hear that they were planning on building a lodge here in Massachusetts!

So, they opened in June and we booked during a promo offer back in March.  It did not disappoint.  The boys were psyched and even my husband made it through the 24 hours of Triple F (forced family fun….for those of you not in the know) unscathed….and happy.  We packed a cooler.

Because it is new…it is spotless.  They definitely pay attention to detail and they definitely cater to family fun.  From the wolf ears that they hand out upon check-in (that families oddly wear during their entire stay…ummm, but not us because we can’t pull off that type of crap off) to the “Have a Wolftastic Day” greeting that they offer even before you can drink a cup of morning coffee, to the door openers who never fail to beat you to the punch and are unbelievably eager to welcome you in and out of every single space with unwavering enthusiasm.  A vacation destination built for kids this is.  Cheesy sure.  But, a good cheesy, if this is the type of vacation that you went ahead and booked for your kids.  I, personally, wouldn’t have had it any other way.  Little Finn feel in love with Violet the Wolf and while Thatcher tried to be too cool for story and song time, I caught him singing along and doing the Wolf Lodge Howl with the best of them!

Our family suite overlooked the main lodge welcome area…which was odd and yet cool all at the same time.  The wrist bands that they give you upon check-in also serve as your room key….which, as a none-purse-carrying type of girl, I LOVED.  You could also just scan your wristband anywhere throughout the lodge and your purchases would simply get charged to your room. Bonus…albeit dangerous I suppose.  For the record…they don’t put those in the kids’ wristbands….that would be silly.

They have six pretty awesome water slides.  Four for kids 42″ and taller and two for anyone over 48″.  One is the the type where they put you in a little booth, count down from 5, and drop the floor out beneath you to propel you straight down into the unknown.  Crazy!  I, for the record, sat that one out. Fortunately, I can blame Finn as he was just a bit too short and someone “had” to stay with him.  My husband and Thatcher braved it eagerly….and loved it.

The lodge also has two water playgrounds, a pretty rad wave pool, a hot tub, a small lazy river, water basketball, an excellent ropes course high up in the air, some little mall-type rides, mini golf, a Magi Quest interactive game to be played throughout your stay, a 6D little movie theater ride, a super fun arcade (and I don’t normally love arcades so that’s saying something), a restaurant, a cafe, a Dunkin’ Donuts, an ice cream joint, a little day spa for the girls, and more!

Pretty cool too is that, while check-in is @ 4:00, they allow you to use the water park beginning at 1:00.  Even more cool is that, while check out is 11:00 a.m., they allow you to use the water park all the way up to closing (9:00 p.m.) that day.  They have lockers and showers so that once you put your luggage in the car you can still enjoy some fun, shower, change, and get ready for the ride home.  That being the case, if you live close enough, one night is a good enough stay.  More than two nights, in my humble opinion, would be too long.

Good, clean, family fun less than two hours from Cape Ann.  I’m guessing that come the long and abyssmal winter months this place will be jammin’!

See the Great Wolf Lodge

 

Kickin’ It in Rockport!

What a ball!   On Saturday morning men and women from the United States Navy joined forces with some young and eager kickball stars from Rockport.  The results were a mad game of Kickball!  The Midshipmen (trust me when I say I did some research to figure out the correct terms to use for these awesome men and women…but, since they were out of uniform, I’m at a loss) were unbelievable with the kids and, while the game was competitive, it was also hysterical to watch.  Children 6 years old and older were welcome to register in advance for the opportunity to play with and against the Navy.  At the end of the game they game some younger children (including the Finnster) a chance to kick and run the bases as well.

Thanks to all of those involved!  Lasting memories for these young kids for sure.

What the Fluke

I will swim with a humpback whale some day.

It’s at the top of my bucket list for sure.

I actually planned a vacation to Costa Rica several years ago for the opportunity to swim with the whales in Drake Bay, but sadly, no whales were in the area during my stay.

I have, however, had the opportunity to swim with wild dolphins, sea turtles, sea lions, rays, black tip reef sharks, and manatees.  Each of those experiences are kind of sacred to me.  All are moments that I will never forget.

While swimming with wild marine life may not be everyone’s cup of tea, if you haven’t been on at least one amazing whale watch, you are missing out.  We are incredibly fortunate to have whales not far off our coast for a good part of the year.  I, all kidding aside, sometimes find myself laying awake at night thinking, “I wonder what the whales are doing right now?” Freak meter rating high, I realize, but true nonetheless.

So, today, knowing that the whales have been plentiful for the past several days, we went for a trip with Cape Ann Whale Watch.  How do I know they’ve been plentiful you may ask?  I follow their blog.

I had the opportunity to speak with both long time owners, Nick Danikas and Jim Douglass, in the parking lot prior to the trip.  Both are great guys who are pretty passionate about offering trips that leave guests with memories to last a lifetime.

Likewise, the crew and the naturalists are phenomenal and beyond highly educated on the matter of whales and sea life indigenous to our waters. Their enthusiasm was contagious.  Even the captain, John Karvelas, was excitedly pointing out bubble clouds as they formed on the surface of the water.  Bubble clouds are a method that whales use to trap krill and sand eels in a tight school so that they can emerge, mouths open, and swallow up a giant meal.

Today’s trip was nothing short of amazing.  To begin, we only had to head 11 miles off the Dog Bar Breakwater, which was a treat in itself.  After a short steam, we were literally surrounded by humpback whales.  I’ve been on many whale watches.  Both on local whale watching boats and on smaller private boats. Today’s trip was one for the record books.

Click Here for more information about Cape Ann Whale Watch

Hear are some of my favorite photos from today’s trip.

 

Fiesta Through the Eyes of the Little Guys

For anyone who has grown up in or around Gloucester, the St. Peter’s Fiesta has clearly served as the true kick-off to summer. But, it is much more than that. The funny thing is that the importance and significance of Fiesta has probably also changed throughout each individual’s life time depending on their age.  At times the religious celebrations have been of upmost importance… and later the rides. At times maybe the five day celebration was all about family… and later it was all about hanging out with friends.  At times it was about hoping to get a glimpse of that certain “crush” under the ferris wheel and years later it was all about air guitar at Old Timers or trying to cut in line at The Gloucester House. Still later, possibly you’ve come full circle, and celebrating with loved ones makes the Fiesta a time to truly be treasured.  At times the parade reigned supreme….and later, maybe the fireworks.  For many years playing on the beach during the seine boat races was more fun than actually watching them….and later cheering for a certain crew was equivalent to the Kentucky Derby.  The Greasy Pole has always been….well, the Greasy Pole.  Whether you love it for the tradition or the insanity, the sport or the absurdity….whether you watch it from Pavilion Beach or by boat in the harbor…there is nothing quite like it.

I’ve been there for all of them.  I have fond memories of the Fiesta that range from being a very young child, to a preteen, to a teenager, to a college student, to a bar-crawling 20 something year-old, to a “grown-up”, and now as a parent….who feels blessed to be sharing the experience with my own children. I have Fiesta memories that involve holding my grandfather’s hand as he guided me through the crowd and later memories of holding his hand as I supported him. I have Fiesta memories of holding the hand of long ago boyfriends and later Fiesta memories of holding the hand of my now husband.  Maybe the best memories are the newest….as just today, I held the hands of both of my sons while jumping from ride to ride.

So, as the mother of a 5 and 7 year-old, St. Peter’s Fiesta to me so far this year has been all about the rides, the games, and the food.  It is all about the color, the sounds, the smells…and the way they all seem to blur together.  While I may have desired to capture other aspects of this year’s Fiesta and I would love to get that “perfect shot”…..I have found myself enjoying it through my children’s eyes.

And this is how they see it.

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15+ Things to do on a RAINY DAY & a classic video

Visiting Gloucester?  Have friends in from out of town?  You’re probably complaining to yourself that the weather isn’t cooperating, right?  Not to worry!  There’s lots to do in Gloucester and Cape Ann when the weather is lousy.  Just be glad you’re not on Cape Cod, where there really isn’t much to do except go to the beach.

Just to see what he’d say I asked a friend, who grew up in Gloucester and now lives in NYC (owns a bar and writes for a New York Time Blog) why would New Yorkers come here instead of Cape Cod.  Here’s the mini rant he wrote back:

Gloucester is a place for culture now, just like it was in the 1800s and 1900s. Contemporary culture is actually at its best here, maybe more so than any Mass city other than Boston and Cambridge.  Where else can you buy fresh caught fish, see a great play, hear Henri Smith play a bar or watch the Met opera in 3D, attend a reading by a national author, eat lobster in the rough or a 3-star style meal, hike, jump quarries, dive off rocks into the ocean (there are no rocks on Cape Cod), mountain bike, drink a $2 beer in barroom full of fisherman, see the most beautiful boats in the world, go to a world class museum, etc etc. 

You nailed it Ray!  Below the video, we’ve listed another 15 things you can do on a rainy day.  Just be glad you don’t live in England, where you wouldn’t expect the sun.  As John Lennon put it in the Beatles classic, “I Am the Walrus”:

Sitting in an English garden waiting for the sun.
If the sun don’t come, you get a tan
From standing in the English rain.

SEE 15 RAINY DAY IDEAS BELOW VIDEO:

Glazed – Paint Your Own Pottery & Glass Fusing
184 Washington St
Gloucester MA 01930
Phone    978-283-5751

Cape Ann Lanes
53 Gloucester Avenue
Gloucester, MA 01930-2256
(978) 283-9753

Cape Ann Art Haven
 180B Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
978-283-3888

Gloucester Cinema
74 Essex Avenue (Rte. 133)
Gloucester, MA 01930
(978) 283-9188

Cape Ann Museum
27 Pleasant Street
Gloucester, MA

Maritime Gloucester
23 Harbor Loop
Gloucester, MA 01930
978-281-0470

Beauport, Sleeper-McCann House
75 Eastern Point Boulevard
Gloucester, Mass. 01930
Tours on the hour. Last tour at 4:00 p.m.

Cape Ann Foodie Tours
617-902-8291

Cape Pond Ice - Ice House Tour
104 Commercial Street
Fort Point Wharf
Gloucester, MA
978-283-0174

Ryan & Wood Distilleries
15 Great Republic Drive
Gloucester, MA
978-281-2282

Sargent House Museum
49 Middle Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
(978) 281-2432

Rocky Neck Art Colony
Rocky Neck
Gloucester, MA

Cape Ann Community Cinema
21 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930
978-309-8448

Shop Locally!

Live Music - At over a dozen locations

BREAKING NEWS FOR KIDS (big & little) ~ New Wacky Acts @ tomorrow’s Block Party

This just in from Block Party Artistic Director, Val Markely:

Tell the little and the big kids too – these whacky acts just signed on for Saturday’s Block Party!

Don’t Miss At Kids’ Town & thru the Street!
East Cackalacky :-musical saw, washtub bass, guitar, and “a threat of accordion.”
Peddler’s Fortune for kids (and grownups!) – audience-participation -prizes, fortunes, jokes, and face-painted mustaches to the brave.
Crudbot, a dancing musical robot that gets into water gun fun duels with audience members!

Want to help?
Contact: lseigel1@gmail.com to Volunteer!

 

Kids needed to create art for Burnham’s Field garden

Kids needed to create art for Burnham’s Field garden

This Friday, Art Haven and the new Burnham’s Field Community Garden are teaming up to invite kids to paint a beautiful mural and vegetable “sculptures” to decorate the garden. The art workshop is free and open to children of all ages.

Burnham’s Field is the largest green space in central Gloucester. Many, many people will be able to enjoy the public art being created by these Gloucester kids.

The workshop will take place this Friday, July 15, from 4 to 5:30 at Art Haven, 180B Main Street in Gloucester. Kids must be accompanied by a parent.

Questions? Call Dawn at Art Haven.

180B Main Street
Gloucester MA
978-283-3888

Kids’ Movie – “The Secret Of Kells”

Click poster for more info.

Click poster for more info.

PLAYING THROUGH APRIL VACATION:

SATURDAY, APRIL 17 @ 11:00AM, 1:00PM & 3:00PM
SUNDAY, APRIL 18 @ 1:00PM

MONDAY, APRIL 19 @ 5:00PM
TUESDAY, APRIL 20 @ 5:00PM
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 21 @ 5:00PM
THURSDAY, APRIL 22 @ 5:00PM
FRIDAY, APRIL 23 @ 5:00PM

SATURDAY, APRIL 24 @ 11:00AM & 1:00PM

“…discloses strange new vistas that nonetheless seem to have existed since ancient times.” -A.O. Scott, New York Times

“Rapturous! Stunning! A riot of color!” -Ella Taylor, Village Voice

“A visual feast…Unlike anything I have ever seen before!” -Lou Lumenick, New York Post

Do not miss the highly anticipated new animated masterpiece from the producers of “Kirikou and the Sorceress” and “The Triplets of Belleville.” Magic, fantasy and Celtic mythology come together in a riot of color and detail that dazzle the eyes in this sweeping story about the power of imagination and faith to carry humanity through dark times. Features the voices of Brendan Gleeson, Mick Lally, Evan McGuire and Christen Mooney.

Young Brendan lives in a remote medieval outpost under siege from barbarian raids. But a new life of adventure beckons when a celebrated master illuminator arrives from foreign lands carrying an ancient but unfinished book, brimming with secret wisdom and powers. To help complete the magical book, Brendan has to overcome his deepest fears on a dangerous quest that takes him into the enchanted forest where mythical creatures hide. It is here that he meets the fairy Aisling, a mysterious young wolf-girl, who helps him along the way. But with the barbarians closing in, will Brendan’s determination and artistic vision illuminate the darkness and show that enlightenment is the best fortification against evil?

Nominated for a 2009 Best Animated Feature Oscar.

A film by Tomm Moore; Rated [G]; 75 minutes

PLAYING AT:
Click to visit the official site of the Cape Ann Community  Cinema.
21 MAIN STREET (ABOVE MYSTERY TRAIN)
GLOUCESTER, MA 01930
(978) 282-1988
WWW.CAPEANNCINEMA.COM

Holy Photo Op, Batman, It’s “Silly Saturday Cinema”!

JOIN US AS WE KICK OFFFamily friendly fun every Saturday at 11AM!FEATURING THE 1966 CAMP CLASSIC

Come see "Batman: The Movie" this Saturday at 11:00AM!
Come see “Batman: The Movie” this Saturday at 11:00AM!

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 17 @ 11:00AM

COME EARLY AND GET YOUR PICTURE TAKEN ON
A REAL BAT-CYCLE
!
Get your picture taken on the BatCycle!
ALL TICKETS JUST $5.00! CHEAP EATS!

COMING:
BATMAN: THE MOVIE (10/17)
WILLY WONKA AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
(10/24)
MONSTERS VS. ALIENS (10/31)
THE ADVENTURES OF MILO & OTIS (11/7)

Click for Cinema info.
CAPE ANN COMMUNITY CINEMA
21 MAIN STREET – 2ND FLOOR
GLOUCESTER, MA 01930
(978) 282-1988

Go Green This Earth Day With Movies @ CACC!

elmo
LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS CO-HOST EARTH DAY FILM FESTIVAL APRIL 15-22

The Cape Ann Community Cinema (at the Gloucester Stage at 267 East Main Street in East Gloucester) is pleased to partner with Essex County Greenbelt and the Cape Ann Farmers’ Market in presenting GREEN DAYS, a week-long eco film festival to commemorate Earth Day. The series will feature a mix of thought-provoking films – some startling, some – about the environment and people who are working to create a sustainable future. The series begins the Wednesday before Earth Day (April 15) and culminates on Earth Day (April 22) with an evening gathering, appetizers and the warm and engaging film “The Real Dirt on Farmer John.”

Essex County Greenbelt, the Cape Ann Farmers’ Market and the Cape Ann Community Cinema are all organizations focused on strengthening our communities by connecting people to each other and to their local landscape.
Information about these organizations will be available at the event, along with light refreshments. Special promotional memberships will be available for attendees. Tickets for each film are $8.50 for adults, $7.00 for students and seniors. The films and showtimes are as follows:

WEDNESDAY 15
ICE PEOPLE [7:15pm]

THURSDAY 16
BURNING THE FUTURE: COAL IN AMERICA [7:15pm]

FRIDAY 17
THE GARDEN [7:15pm] – OSCAR NOMINEE! (Partner: Farmer Dave’s)

SATURDAY 18
ELMO IN ‘BEING GREEN’ [10:30am] – FREE FOR EVERYONE!
SCARRED LANDS [12:30pm]
MAMA EARTH / CRUDE IMPACT [2:45pm] (Sponsor: The Cape Ann Healing Center)
ICE PEOPLE [5:00pm] (note: late substitution for Tapped!)
THE GARDEN [7:15pm] – OSCAR NOMINEE! (Partner: Farmer Dave’s)

SUNDAY 19
NO WONDER TO COMPARE:  THE MARVEL OF CETACEANS [1:30pm]
plus bonus short DISNEYLAND DREAMFREE!
Filmmaker Robbins Barstow, co-founder of the Connecticut Cetacean Society, will present his whale video “No Wonder To Compare” and his Library Of Congress-inducted travel document, “Disneyland Dream” (from 1956!). We will also show an additional short promotional film about Wakefield’s Pleasure Island, aka “The Disneyland Of The East.”

THE POWER OF COMMUNITY:  HOW CUBA SURVIVED PEAK OIL [4:00pm]
This is a fundraiser for the Cape Ann Farmers’ Market. Tickets are $30.00 for the film and dinner, $45.00 for the film, dinner and a membership to CAFM. [RESERVE TICKETS]

MONDAY 20
THE GARDEN [7:15pm] – OSCAR NOMINEE! (Partner: Farmer Dave’s)

TUESDAY 21
BURNING THE FUTURE: COAL IN AMERICA [7:15pm]

WEDNESDAY 22
THE REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN [7:15pm]

Click to visit the official site of The Cape Ann Community Cinema.

Click to visit the official site of The Cape Ann Community Cinema.

(AT GLOUCESTER STAGE)
267 EAST MAIN STREET
GLOUCESTER, MA 01930
978/282-1988

www.CapeAnnCinema.com

February Vacation! Stuff to do with the Kids!

Plenty for parents to plan to do on vacation this month

Parents and caregivers looking for activities for the children during school vacation week can choose from several offerings from local organizations.

Here’s a short list of the activities offered  for the weekend and into next week.

Movies Cape Ann Cinema, Gloucester Cinema

Cape Ann Families“Do Something Really Big!”,  Nature Crafts,  Dance Revolution, “Guitar Hero” Tournament

The Trustees of Reservations- Winter birding, Snowflake Science, Winter Quest, Hermit’s Tales on the Trails, Cows in their Winter Home, Bluebird Nest Box Building

Manchester Public Library- Make a Bird Feeder  Audubon Ark Museum Passes

Check out Flapping like a Haddock for  more fun things to do!

fish-3

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