Category Archives: Family

Summer Concert Series at Stage Fort Park Begins July 10

The Antonio Gentile Bandstand Summer Concert Series begins on Sunday, July 11, 2016, at 7:00pm, at the bandstand in Stage Fort Park, Hough Avenue, Gloucester, MA. The series of eight free outdoor concerts is celebrating its Thirtieth anniversary. For most of those years the concerts have been produced by David Benjamin, who promises another exciting season of varied musical styles played by top professional bands.

The concerts are sponsored in part by area businesses and individual sponsors. The opening concert on July 10, will feature the Continentals, a popular New England pop-rock band playing your favorite “oldies” and many current cover tunes. The Continentals rain date will be Friday, July 15, at 7pm. All other concerts feature a rain date of the following Wednesday evening.

This season marks a return of the Cape Ann Big Band (Aug. 21), the fantastic Beatles tribute band 4Ever Fab (Aug. 14) and Lee Lewis and the Doo Wop Allstars (Aug. 28). Other featured acts are: Grupo Fantasia (July 17), Compaq Big Band (July 24), Old Cold Tater with Chick & Ellen (July 31) and the Cape Ann Community Band (Aug. 28).

CapeAnnBigBand LeeLewis

For concert information please contact David Benjamin, Tel. 978-281-0543,
email: David@DavidLBenjamin.com or visit www.DavidLBenjamin.com,

Ice Trampoline Challenge – Who is up for it?

Our son John came up with this challenge the other day with @ 10 LB of Cape Pond Ice but this time they bumped up the challenge with 40LB of ice.  Melissa Cox has agreed to the the Ice Trampoline Challenge after Fiesta – anyone else up for the Challenge?  John will shot, edit and post your Trampoline Ice Challenge Video.

If you want to see more of John’s videos (including Gloucester GoPro videos) subscribe to his Youtube Channel here.  Please like his videos too

 

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!

Happy Dad’s Day to the wonderful fathers, husbands, grandfathers, uncles, best friends, and all the good men in our lives.

Our son-in-law Matt O’Rourke created this ad for Volvo. We posted the shortened spot recently and here is the newly released full length version. The message is sweet for Father’s Day I think. 

Funny Girl at NSMT grabs you and won’t let go!

Shoshana Bean is Fanny Brice in North Shore Music Theatre’s production of FUNNY GIRL playing thru June 19, 2016. Photo © Paul Lyden

Every once in a while a live show delivers a truly moving theatre experience.  North Shore Music Theatre‘s production of Funny Girl is it.  This musical has everything you’d want in an evening out: It’s funny, heartwarming, music is stellar and the dancing is engaging — especially the tap.

Most importantly, the star, Shoshana Bean, grabs you from the moment she enters the stage and keeps hold of your emotions while she beckons your hopes, dreams and fears to go along with her on a wild ride through the early 20th century life of Zeigfeld Follies star Fanny Brice.

Shoshana Bean (who was the first replacement actress for the role of Elphaba on Broadway in the musical Wicked) has a gorgeous voice and is perfectly cast in the role made famous by Barbara Streisand on Broadway in 1964 and on film in 1968.  Bean is an extraordinarily good actress whose physical comedy and timing make this NSMT show one of our favorites in a long time.  Even our son loved it and he’s jaded by having been around rock stars all his life!

Funny Girl is selling fast and only running through June 19th, so get your tickets right now, RIGHT HERE!!

Here’s live performance of Fanny Brice singing one of her hits just to get you in the mood  . . .

Video- Gloucester MA Waterfront , Rockport, Bearskin Neck, 1959-1967 Part 1

Old reels of tape converted to digital files.  Ciaramitaro and Curcuru families.  Benny Curcuru, Auntie Annie, Captain Joe and Felicia Ciaramitaro.  Stage Fort Park, Gloucester Harbor, the Paint Factory, The Dragger Fleet, Downtown, Rogers Street, The Gloucester House, Bearskin Neck, Rockport.  I don’t recognize a lot of the older Italian women and men, feel free to leave a comment with the names you recognize and the time displayed when you see them in the comments on this video.  Thank you

Nichole’s Picks 5/21 + 5/22

Pick #1:  Motif #1 Day, Rockport

The Motif No.1 Day Festival celebrates Rockport across the arts. And all of it centers around the fishing shack-artist’s studio-tourist attraction that started it all: an old building right on one of Rockport’s historic wharves that was painted so often by artists at the turn of the last century that it was given the nickname Motif No.1 by Lester Hornby, a well-known artist and instructor of the period.

Film, poetry, dance, music, and art-making activities are all a part of the festival, as well as historical presentations and a Motif No.1 Day 5k and Fun Run, with proceeds to benefit Rockport Public Schools’ wellness initiatives.

FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT ROCKPORTEXCHANGE.ORG BY CLICKING HERE

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Pick #2:  92.9 EarthFest Concert on the Hatch Shell

READ ALL ABOUT IT HERE

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“We are excited to announce that Flight of Fire, The Strumbellas, Joywave and Fitz and the Tantrums will be performing at this years FREE Radio 92.9 EarthFest Presented By Whole Foods Market. The festival will take place at the DCR Hatch Memorial Shell on May 21st, 2016 from 10:00am-5:00pm.”

Pick #3:  Let’s Go Fly a Kite: A Practically Perfect Mary Poppins Party 

Sunday, May 22nd 1:00-4:00

It’s an afternoon of Poppins fun for the whole family at this Mary Poppins Party at Crane Estate. Activities include kite making and flying, chalk drawing, lawn games, and more. Kite aficionados from Kites Over New England are on hand to show their kites and flying techniques. Tea, lemonade, and cookies are served.

READ ALL ABOUT IT HERE

Cost:  Child Member: $24, Child NonMember: $30
Parents and Guardians are Free

As always, for a more comprehensive list of family activities please visit our friends at North Shore Kid

Get Ready for Cape Ann Symphony’s Season Finale with this Mesmerizing Look at Brahms

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Can you imagine a more spectacular climax to the Cape Ann Symphony‘s most spectacular season?  On Saturday (5/21) you can join Yoichi Udagawa and the top classical players on Boston’s North Shore for a stellar evening of music.  This kind of concert doesn’t come along very often.  Believe it or not, there are still tickets available for this Grand Finale. Get Tickets Here.

Watch this mesmerizing video to get you in the mood . . .

 

LOCAL BAND PREVIEWS SONGS FROM UPCOMING ALBUM, JOINED BY THE ROCKPORT HIGH SCHOOL MADRIGAL CHOIR FRIDAY APRIL 29, ROCKPORT MA Shalin Liu Performance Center 37 Main St. Rockport MA. 8pm

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What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? will be performing with the Rockport High School Madrigal Choir. The Madrigal Choir, led by Patti Pike, will be opening up the evening, and then accompanying What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? on several songs at the end of the night. A percentage of ticket sales will be donated back to the RPS Music Department.

Mr Fox is working on a new album, and will be performing those new songs on the 29th.
It’s also lead singer-songwriter, 3rian King’s birthday! What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? features Nathan Cohen on violin & trumpet, Renee Dupuis on vocals, piano, and melodica, Joe Cardoza on upright bass, Dennis Monagle on drums, and 3rian King on voice, acoustic guitar, & piano. The band’s sound has been described as Tom Waits and Amy Winehouse performing in a secret French cafe.

Tickets range $20-$32 and can be purchased here: http://rockportmusic.org/what-time-mr-fox/

There are student and senior discounts if you call the box office to order tickets at 978 546 7391.
Photos and additional band info can be found here:
http://whattimeisitmrfox.com/bio.html
http://www.whattimeisitmrfox.com
http://www.whattimeisitmrfox.bandcamp.com
https://www.facebook.com/whattimeisitmrfox
https://twitter.com/mrfoxinfo

 

 

One Year Later…Still Holds True

I wrote this letter and used it as a post a little over a year ago.  For a few different reasons, I’m feeling the need to repost it.

Here’s the original post….but below is what the contents of the letter said…

Dear Future Teachers, Instructors, and Coaches of my Sons,

I’d like to take a minute now to thank you for the hours, energy, and love that you will undoubtedly be giving to my children in the future.  I know that it is not always an easy job that you have, but it is one that you accepted, however long ago, because you have the best interest of children, and now my children, at heart.   Many of you have simply volunteered…and don’t even get paid…and all of you spend a large portion of your personal time thinking about, worrying about, or being excited about things that have to do with the classes you teach, the lessons you give, or the practices that you run.

I know, no matter how much you love what you do, the down side is that your job will sometimes require that you make difficult decisions.  I know that those decisions will sometimes even cause you sleepless nights, a heavy heart, and worry, and pain.

I’d like to tell you now…that it is OK.  It is OK to not pick my son.

It is OK to not call on him when his hand in raised as high as possible in class, because you have 20 students and they all want to make you happy by knowing the right answer or sharing their thoughts.

I know that even that one silly decision….who to call on?….can be excruciating…each and every time.  I know that you make a mental note…and try to call on them all the same amount each week, but it is still so hard to watch their hands fall disappointedly back into their laps.

It is OK, if my son ends up not being able to carry a tune, that he does not receive a solo in the Spring Concert…no matter how much he wants one. You know what? Even if he can sing, but isn’t one of the best, it is still ok.  I know that you’ll find other ways to encourage him and make him feel proud. I know that you’ll let him know how important his role in the chorus is.

It is OK, if my son has trouble finding his inner actor, to not pick him for a leading role.  He may be crushed for a minute, but I know that you need to do what is right for the other children and the school play.  He’ll understand, because he knows  that everyone has strengths.  We will encourage him to find another way to shine and tell him how important it is to play that small supporting role.  The play couldn’t go on if all characters weren’t cast…no matter how big or small.  After all.

I image that my son will enjoy working on science fair projects each spring.  But, you know what, when it comes time to pick just 5 projects to send to regionals, it is OK to pick others…and not his.  His hard work and the pride that he feels when he presents his experiment should be enough for him.  And, it will motivate him all that much more the following year.  And, trust me, I know how hard it will be for you to pick just 5.  I know that you wish someone else could make those decisions.

I want you to know now that it is OK if his essay is not submitted to the writing contest.  Even though I’m sure he’ll try so hard to be chosen and want so desperately to impress you, sometimes you have to just pick one…and inevitably the other children will feel sad.  I know, without a second of doubt, however, that you’ll pull him aside and tell him how much you enjoyed his story.  You’ll make him want to write again….because writing is fun…even if your story isn’t picked.

It will always be OK if, when some children’s art work gets selected for the art show, his is not.  We will shower him with praise, encourage him to create more, and teach him to congratulate his friends for their creativity and their submissions.  His art will always have a special place in our home.

It is also OK, no matter how much he tries, to sometimes make the decision to leave him on the bench.   I know that you will take time during the season to help him improve, make him feel valuable, and motivate him to dig deeper.  And, because you’ve done such a great job, I know that if the team wins, he will know he has won and played a monumental role in the victory.  Even if his role wasn’t as obvious in the final minutes of a game.

I want to thank you again, because I know that it sometimes feels impossible.  I know that you became a teacher, an instructor, or a coach for so many wonderful reasons.  I know that you had giant aspirations to always be “fair.”  I’m also guessing that you never imagined how many times each year, session, or season you would feel burdened by decisions that have no “fair” answer.

I hope that you know you have our support and gratitude and the love and respect of my child.  Even if you didn’t pick him.  Because…even if you didn’t pick him….you chose him.  You chose to teach him, encourage him, support him, love him, challenge him, push him, excite him, and inspire him.  Your success, loyalty, or impact can not be judged by one, or even several of those difficult decisions.  It is based on the many moments, outside of those decisions, that you made sure to make him know that you are there for him.

I think it is important to tell you….not that you don’t already know….that I don’t expect all parents will feel the same way.  And…that I am by no means speaking for them.  I am simply telling you how I feel.

Thank you in advance for all that you will surely do….and for those difficult decisions you are forced to make.

Sincerely,

Nichole

Sharing my husband’s memory of the night his band opened for Prince

Last night talking about Prince with my husband, and knowing what a huge fan of his he was, I asked Tom what is his favorite Prince song. He said there were too many and then shared a heartfelt story about the night his band (The Atlantics) opened for Prince at the Metro. It was for The Dirty Mind album tour and the year was 1981, Saint Patrick’s Day. He and his band mates were over the moon with excitement, but also scared to death. Not because of Prince’s growing star power, but because of the intense racial divisions prevailing in Boston at that time, which often manifested at rock concerts, with musicians getting caught in the crosshairs.

All worries were for nothing. To everyone’s joyful surprise, the audience, a sea of black faces and white faces in equal numbers, were all there to have a fantastic time, which they did. Tom especially recalls a group of young black women in the first row, dressed more for church than a rock concert, smiling and dancing to the Atlantics songs, and if you can believe this, they placed their purses on top of the stage, near his feet. (Can people even bring purses to concerts any longer??) Prince’s messages of love and tolerance are a powerful inspiration. That Saint Patrick’s Day night at the Metro opening for Prince is one of Tom’s favorite band memories.

On Tom’s facebook page is a great photo from that night, taken by the Metro’s house photographer Steven Stone, maybe a little too sexy in case young kids are scrolling through GMG, but you can check it out here at Thomas Hauck.

Joy

Having grandchildren is pure joy. Great fun with the kids the other day.

And We’re Off

As I write this, it is 10:00 p.m Thursday night…when it posts, it’ll be 9:00 a.m. Friday morning.  By then (which will be now to you), if all goes as planned, we should be out of Massachusetts, through Connecticut, past New York, and hopefully even out of New Jersey.  On our way, of course, to Florida.

Sure,  flying would be easier…and faster.  But, flying a family of four to Orlando over a school vacation week has gotten ridiculously expensive.  It would be easy to say that was the only reason we’re driving, but…truth be told…I also kind of enjoy it.

We drove to Florida each and every year when I was a child.  While my parents may remember those days differently, I have nothing but fond memories of those trips.  Of course, back then, there were no car seats or even seat belts.  We built forts out of suitcases in the back of the family station wagon and slept a good part of the way.  Of course, back then, there were also no iPads, portable DVD players, or even cell phones.  In some ways the trip was probably easier.  In lots of ways the trip was much more difficult.  No packing of electronics….and chargers for all of those electronics.  No GPS….just giant bulky road maps…that no one in the world knows how to fold back up into their original neat package.  Pros…cons.  Who knows?

Either way, what hasn’t change, is that we’re looking at a whole lot of Forced Family Fun in the car for 24 hours.  Typically, my boys are up for an adventure and thrive on the go.  Road trips are usually exciting and they are good sports who make the most of it.  I am not naive enough to think that will necessarily be the case this time, but one can hope.

Wish us luck.  We’ll keep you posted (because nowadays…unlike back then…blogging is a thing and I can).  With love, from somewhere on 95 South, en route to the Sunshine State.

#makingmemories     (there were also no hashtags back then)

😉

(or emojis)   How did we ever get by?

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And So it Goes.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a post asking for suggestions about how to…or even whether or not to….surprise Thatcher and Finn with the trip we are taking to Florida in April.

You can read that post HERE if you’d like

To summarize, I had planned a “Disney Reveal” three and a half years ago and it was an epic failure.  Thatcher had just turned five and Finn had just turned three.  They had been asking to go and, of course, I thought they’d be over the moon.  Don’t get me wrong…they got excited…just not while I was trying to capture the magic on film.

So, flash forward to Easter Sunday this year.  I figured I would surprise them with the trip during an Easter Egg hunt.  I wrote a little poem, I numbered some eggs 1-18, hid them inside the house (so as not to get confused with the Easter Bunny’s outside eggs), had them line the eggs up in order, open them up to reveal letters, and read the secret message.  It was pretty fun… if I do say so myself.  And, this time, their reaction was….well, no better than last time, actually.  There was a brief moment, when Finn had figured it out, that I thought there may be some celebration dance of sorts….but, he squelched any kind of enthusiasm that was about to break free.  Sigh.

While I know they’re actually excited to bust out of dodge for a bit, head to the sunshine, go on some excellent rides, and hang by the pool….clearly my boys do not enjoy the act of being surprised.

Live and finally learn.

Get Crackin’…Egg Hunt Throw Back

Happy, Happy Easter!

I know that I have totally used these photos in another post here on GMG, but they are my all-time favorite Easter photos ever.  This kid kills me.  Finn turned the lovely and charming Rockport Egg Hunt into some crazy rugby inspired grudge match.  When the leader of the egg hunt said, “Ready, set, go” he took off all Ninja Warrior from one end of the field, clear down to the other, and back again.  He slowed down long enough to grab just one little egg.  I have absolutely no idea what was going through his head, but I laugh and laugh every time I see these pics.

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