Category Archives: Rockport

BREAKING: PAIR OF SWANS AT NILES AND HENRY’S PONDS!!

Pair Cape Ann Swans third year swans copyright Kim SmithA pair of swans was spotted at Niles Pond this morning by my friend Lyn. I stopped by the Pond at 8:15 to have a look. They were on the far side of Niles, getting ready to take off and was only able to take a few quick photos. The pair flew overhead in the direction of Henry’s Pond. After doing the podcast with Joey and the wonderful Gloucester Stage Company cast, I raced over to Henry’s. In the meantime, the two had returned to Niles, but were chased away by our Mr. Swan. As I arrived at Henry’s they flew in!

Cape Ann Swans copyright Kim SmithThe pair appear to be in their third year. This is evident by the patches of brown feathers and dullish pink bills, although the bill of the larger of the two is gaining a more coral-orange hue. Third year swan copyright Kim Smith copyNote both have black eyes, unlike our rare and beautiful blue-eyed swan. I am hopeful that Mr. Swan will find a new mate and if we are fortunate, this newly arrived on the scene pair will decide to make Cape Ann their home too!Pair Cape Ann Swans copyright Kim SmithIf you catch sight of swans at any of our area ponds or in the harbor, please write in and let me know. Thank you so much!

The haul today at Motif #1 Day in Rockport

Cake Ann and Seaview

Got the dessert at Cake Ann and some Salsa from Seaview. Stopped by Seaview to pick up some eggs.

bareskin

Bearskin was hoppin’

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Rubber Duck also did not write down the name of this shop. Bearskin Neck. Soapy bare skin.

Didn't catch the name of the store. You have to come to Bearskin Neck to see the pig. "Some Pig"

Didn’t catch the name of the store. You have to come to Bearskin Neck to see the pig. “Some Pig”

HAPPY MOTIF NO. 1 DAY!

Don’t miss this fun, action packed day with the Motif 1 5k Race, circus performers, live music, farmer’s market, art, poetry and much, much more! The festivities begin at 9am, Saturday, May 21st. For more information and a complete schedule of events visit the Rockport Exchange website here.

Motif No. 1 Rockport MA copyright Kim Smith

Here’s hoping for a warm, sunny day for Motif No. 1 Day. Best wishes to Sarah Kelly and festival organizers for a smashingly successful event!!! 

 

 

Calling All Poets! Open Mic in Rockport

A tradition of the Motif No.1 Day arts festival is to feature poets from Cape Ann and their work in a poetry reading, which takes place each year at 4pm.

This year the event is hosted by Christopher Anderson of the Eastern Point Lit House, and will take place in an open mic format. Poets and readers of all ages welcome. Come early for the other literary events at the festival (the Magnetic Poetry Slam, Book Spine Poetry, selections from Shakespeare presented by Cape Ann Shakespeare Troupe, and more) and stay for the Words Before Dinner Poetry Reading.

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Click HERE for a general festival Schedule of Events.

RED SHED FILM FESTIVAL KICKS OFF MOTIF ONE DAY AND IS A SMASHING SUCCESS!!!

Amy Rich Sara kelly Red Shed copyright Kim SmithRockport Exchange Dynamic Duo Amy Rich and Sarah Kelly

Congratulations and hats off to Red Shed Film Festival producer and curator Henry Cooper, Rockport Exchange President Amy Rich, and Rockport Exchange Executive Director Sarah Kelly. Imagine, two years ago the festival was held in a tent, last year at the Rockport Library, and this year at the Shalin Lui!!

“The Red Shed Film Festival is designed as a showcase for films or filmmakers with a stake in our region and a sense of place.”

Henry Cooper Sara Kelly Red Shed copyright Kim Smith

Henry Cooper and Sarah Kelly

Playing on the large screen at the performing center were 12 stellar short films by local filmmakers including gems by Anthony Farenwald, Nubar Alexanian, Erich Archer, Rob Apse, Persistent Productions, Henry Ferrini, and more.

Red Shed film Festival Persistent Productions Meghan Shea Mike Rogers copyright Kim Smith

People’s Choice Awarded to Meghan Shea and Mike Rogers

Special thanks to Willow Rest for providing delectable light fare and to Rockport Music for providing the venue.

To support the film festival or to get involved visitwww.rockportexchange.org. To reach Henry Cooper email at henry@rockportexchange.org.

So many thanks to Henry Cooper for sending the photos below. It was truly a treat to see my trailer for Beauty on the Wing on the large screen!

BEAUTYWINGRSFF2016SCREENING BEAUTYWINGRSFF2016SCREENING (2)

Beautiful collage poster by Mary Faino

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RED SHED FILM FESTIVAL AT THE SHALIN LIU THIS MONDAY NIGHT!!

Please join us at the Shalin Liu Performance Center for the Red Shed Film Festival Monday evening at
7pm. I hope to see you there!13217105_10154628533013797_7852232875493798091_o

 

The 4th annual Red Shed Film Fest is a celebration of local and global filmmaking via a selected series of
short films. Mixing genres, this year’s entries span narrative, documentary, and short episodic pilots and
established series. As in years past, there is also a science-fiction entry and a music video. All in
attendance will have the opportunity to vote for the Audience Choice Award to be given to one of the
entries screened. The winner will be announced at the post-screening reception on the third floor of the
Shalin Liu Performance Center.

Art! Music! Poetry! Dance! on Motif No.1 Day

Motif_poster2016_3-1Aflts

Lots of great stuff is going on this year in Rockport at the annual Motif No.1 Day. We have the Rockport Farmers Market, coffee from Twin Lights Coffee Co., burgers from Seaview Farm, lots of good stuff from the Rockport New Year’s Eve Food Booth and crepes from the soon-to-be-open StudioCrepe restaurant by the train station.

A Seaside Circus, great live music, interactive activities like the Sidewalk Chalk Art Contest, poetry readings, and much more are all part of the event, not to mention the Motif No.1 Day 5K and Fun Run, with proceeds going to benefit health & wellness at Rockport Elementary School!

Go to www.rockportexchange.org for a Schedule of Events, but keep in mind more good things will be added before the festival takes place on May 21st.

The Red Shed Film Fest in Rockport!

Coming up on Monday, the 16th! Local filmmakers will showcase their work in a micro-film fest, the Red Shed Film Fest (in honor of the Motif in honor of Motif No.1 Day in honor of the arts…).

Starting at 7pm , short films will screen in Rockport Music’s beautiful Shalin Liu Performance Center. A party on the 3rd floor will follow the screening, with a cash bar and light food from the legendary Willow Rest. By “party” I mean: party, Rockport-style, where we stay up past 8pm, so bear this in mind in terms of your expectations. This doesn’t mean it won’t be fun, maybe even raucous! By Rockport standards! Which is still great!

The Red Shed Film Fest is a small but mighty showcase for our burgeoning local film scene. If you like short films and can tolerate other people and want to support art, this event is for YOU!

Come out to the Red Shed Film Fest on May 16th. The RSFF kicks off the week leading up to Motif No.1 Day on Saturday, and is a great way to begin the week. Admission is suggested donation. Your donations support the free programming of the Motif No.1 Day festival, celebrating Rockport across the arts, featuring film, dance, music and poetry. For more info on the fest go to www.rockportexchange.org.

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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

mr foxshalin liu 4.29.2016

MrFoxPic2BWbySarahPeck.jpg

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

 

 

DIAMONDS IN THE ROUGH

 

Mute swan Kim SmithDiamonds in the rough

Pipe down duckies, Mr. Swan is having his morning nap!

A video posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

Mr. Swan resting (trying to) in the early morning sun. Mallards courting make nap time difficult.

Pebble Beach sunrise Rockport Kim SmithThis morning at Pebble Beach

Homie and Rubber Duck’s Fifth Anniversary

Five years since Rubber Duck and Homie met on that blustery day April 18, 2011. The Fifth is the wood anniversary. Homie gave Rubber Duck a carving of Homie. (Homie is a little self-centered.)

Homie would have carved it himself but he has no opposable thumbs.

Homie would have carved it himself but he has no opposable thumbs.

The following is a repost of Homie and Rubber Duck’s First Anniversary describing that fateful hook-up five years ago today.

Homie: “You’re not from around here are you? May I show you the cove?”

Solitude of the lonely Homie.

Cold, lonely, rubbery, but Patriotic!

A little stand offish at first.

They’re eyes locked and Homie was in love.

“So how many children should we have?” Homie wasn’t wasting any time.

“I have a lovely nest on Milk Island.”

You’re not listening to a word I’m saying!”

“We could make it work!”

“Do you think it’s safe to come out?”

Your friends are rude Homie.

Rubber Duck out on the Town at another Fred Bodin Christmas party.

I cannot believe it has only been one year since the Rubber Duck met Homie on a blustery day just like today, April 18, 2011. When I posted that first part of the Rubber Duck saga I was only joking about it being a twenty part series. Little did I know that maybe a hundred posts later the story is still not finished. To commemorate their anniversary I repost the first few chapters. Later this week will be an update of how Homie and Rubber Duck spent their day today. Part I posted April 18th, 2011:  (This will be a twenty part series.) Part II posted April 19th, 2011: But first, the back story. Two lonely birds:  But soon the connection was made and time stopped. ”  “I am so out of here!”  But Homie came back of course and took Rubber Duck all over. The Rockport Dump, Thacher Island lighthouse, Maine, Florida, meeting Santa when he arrived in Rockport, wine tasting at Passports, Duck Confit at Duckworth’s. Then, just a few months later, things got a little weird: Last sighting of RD was at the Spring Fling two weeks ago with rumors that she was at the Thirsty Golf contest at the DogBar last week when Joey caught her again staring at him.  Flexilis anatidaephobia is the fear that a rubber duck is staring at you and Joey has got it bad.

A Modern Day Gloucester Sea Monster Encounter

A true story, the following is a modern day fanciful beast encounter. I have been reluctant to write about this adventure for fear it would draw sight-seers to regions of Cape Ann off the beaten path, as happened with the white pelican sighting. Now that the mystery of its identity may perhaps be solved, I think it safe.

One morning at daybreak as I was unloading my gear at Brace Cove, I paused to scan the edges and then the whole of Niles Pond. I do this often when out filming and photographing at our local ponds and marshes, looking for swans and other wild birds that may be seeking shelter along these idyllic shores. In the middle of the pond was a float of ice with a great many seagulls just beginning to awaken with the rising sun. Nothing unusual about that. What caught my attention was a very large brown shape there on the ice amongst the gulls. Harumph! I said to no one but myself, what a view spoiler and how utterly trashy that a large brown paper lawn and leaf bag should blow out to the middle of the pond and become stuck there. And then the brown shape slithered into the pond. I not only saw it, but heard the very distinct sound of a creature sliding expertly into water. I tried in vain to catch another glimpse and spent the remainder of the morning half spooked and half kicking myself for not more hurriedly making the effort to film and photograph the “garbage bag.” If only I’d known it was alive!

Shortly after the creature encounter, I read about the Ten Pound Island sea monster sightings and concluded, that yes, a mysterious sea creature could easily swim around Eastern Point Lighthouse, haul up at Brace Cove, cross the causeway, and have himself a swim at Niles Pond, if he were so inclined.

I thought about this beast encounter for weeks and at one point, somewhat embarrassedly, asked my husband to come with me to photograph a moonlit evening at Niles Pond as I wasn’t sure I wanted to come face to face with such a great creature at night. By myself. Being the good sport that he is, he came, if just to prove that it was perfectly safe to photograph in the moonlight.

As mentioned, I’ve been hesitant to write this until very recently when at Henry’s Pond, on a rainy and chilly early spring morning I spied for only a few moments what appeared to be a very mini version of the Niles Pond creature. It was swimming at top speed with a long sinuous streamlined shape beneath the surface of the water and only a bit of its head visible above the water. I took a blurry snapshot and raced home to search books and internet for any clues. The creature was too big to be a muskrat and its tail too slender to be a beaver. I am almost certain that what I saw at Henry’s was a North American River Otter. Two weeks passed when while filming Mr. Swan, again on an overcast morning at Henry’s, the little creature energetically appeared near the marshy shore on the opposite side of the pond, looked all around, dove, re-emerged, again looked all about, and then disappeared. This time I was able to capture a few seconds of video of this inquisitive little otter.

What I have learned about North American River Otters is that they can grow very large, up to five and half feet and weigh thirty pounds. There is the Great River Otter of South America, which can grow over six feet, but the creature I saw at Niles was about four and half to five feet long.

Well there you go, a modern day fanciful beast encounter. After seeing my beast, I think it quite easy to understand how sea monster stories from days gone by could so easily capture people’s imaginations.

Please write if you think you have seen a River Otter in your neighborhood. Thank you!

Look toward the marsh in the first clip, with Mr. Swan in the foreground. You can see the bobbing head of the otter in the background. I was hoping to see the otter again and try to capture better footage but it has been several weeks and no further sightings.

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