Tag Archives: Joel Brown

Ma Audubon’s Chris Leahy retirement party May 21

It’s not a surprise party, but it is limited in size. Invitations will go out in April. Mass Audubon is hosting a special retirement tribute for Chris Leahy in celebration of his remarkable career –45 years of “impact and success”. How nice to see a Gloucester naturalist treasure being recognized in the spring –(bird-a-thon season!)– at Joppa Flats Education Center, Parker River National Wildlife sanctuary.  Folks and fans can also swarm cards and MA Audubon gifts as a great way to acknowledge this milestone. Chris’s astonishing powers of observation and communication skills can make anyone care about birds, nature, and place. Within a mere twenty seconds of conversation he can capture history and immediacy in such an affable and effortless manner. What an ambassador.

“If I said, ‘Are there more birds around in the summer or the winter?’ most people would say the summer, and that’s right. But not by much,” said tour leader Christopher Leahy of Gloucester, who holds the Gerard A. Bertrand chair of natural history and field ornithology at Mass Audubon. “Actually almost 50 percent of the 300 bird species that occur in Massachusetts occur here during the winter.”– Chris Leahy  from Boston Globe article Thrills and Chills: Birders Brave the Cape Ann Cold and Find What They’re Looking For by Joel Brown, published February 5, 2009 

Congratulations, Chris



Video- Talking Kickstarter With Writer Joel Brown

Joel Brown discusses his experience fundsourcing his book through Kickstarter.  It’s an interesting lesson on how Kickstarter works and the experience Joel had going through the Kickstarter process.

Without Kickstarter and programs like it Joel Brown’s Essex Coastal Byway Guide maybe never gets published, Our EJ LeFavour’s Pussycat Book doesn’t get published and The C. B. Fisk Opus Documentary maybe doesn’t get made the way they would have liked.

Understand more about the process by watching the video with writer Joel Brown here-


You’re Coming To The North Shore Of Boston? This Is The Guide Book You Need To Buy- The Essex Coastal Byway Guide By Joel Brown


Joel Brown is a freelance writer who writes for the Boston Globe, www.hubarts.com and other publications. 

His Essex Coastal Byway Guide Is THE GUIDE for anyone coming to visit from out of town but also for locals who want to know more about all the incredible opportunities to explore the magical area we live in.

We all know there are a ton of things to do around here but through the daily drudgery of life we often forget what is right outside our windows.  Instead of asking what to do and heading to the mall or the movies there’s so much more culturally to do and the Essex Coastal Byway Guide has it all laid out for you.

You can get it  now at the Book Store of Gloucester, Toad Hall in Rockport, Manchester By the Book, Book Shop of Beverly Farms, River’s Edge in Ipswich and the Wenham Tea House. Also: Peabody Essex Museum, Cape Ann Museum, Lynn Museum, Custom House Maritime Museum, Jabberwocky, Bertram & Oliver, Brass Lyon, Joppa Flats Audubon, the Bird Watchers Shop and my main source of sustenance, the Warren Street Market Deli. More added every day!

Check out the Essex Coastal Byway Guide website here

Watch our interview below-


Essex Coastal Byway Guide From Joel Brown From NBPT

The new Essex Coastal Scenic Byway links thirteen towns on the North Shore of Massachusetts to highlight their history, culture and scenic beauty. From Lynn to Salem to Gloucester to Newburyport, the Byway leads travelers to picturesque downtowns and busy working harbors, along sandy beaches and rocky shores.

There are plenty of guidebooks to tell visitors which motels have pools and which restaurants get three stars. What they need is a book written by someone who can tell them why the Great Marsh is important to everyone and where you really get the best fried clams and how Motif #1 got so famous. Someone who can also make the connections between  the proud and sometimes difficult history of cargo ships and privateers and fishing schooners and today’s very different environment of arts and culture and environmental preservation.

I grew up near Essex County and visited often. I’ve lived in Newburyport for almost fifteen years and written about life on the North Shore for the Boston Globe since 2005. I’ve kayaked the marshes, sailed the coast, biked and hiked and bird-watched, sometimes for a story and sometimes just for fun. From all this comes an appreciation of what makes the North Shore special and how its seemingly disparate parts fit together.

THE ESSEX COASTAL BYWAY GUIDE is divided into 14 chapters – for the 13 towns plus Plum Island – featuring separate entries on dozens of the area’s attractions, from the Crane Estate to the Lynn Museum and from the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge to Singing Beach. It will come out as a paperback and e-book in October.

Guide cover small

Joel Brown from NBPT writes-

You reach so many people, I was hoping you’d do a post on the ESSEX COASTAL BYWAY GUIDE, which I’m publishing this fall. I think many of your readers would be interested to know this is coming and maybe support it. It’s not officially connected with Essex Heritage or Essex Coastal Scenic Byway, but they’re aware and the executive director has written a foreword.

Here’s The Kickstarter for the project, which will fund the first printing and help pay the cover artist (Dylan Metrano, who did the paper cuts, lives in Rockport in the cold months) and the designer and copyeditor: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/joelbrown/essex-coastal-byway-guide