Destination Salem Blog

Trolley Christmas Carol tickets going fast!

Trolley Christmas Carol

Don't be scared, tickets aren't sold out yet! But if you wait much longer, you will miss the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future, as well as Scrooge's redemption in this most entertaining take on Dickens' A Christmas Carol

Now entering into it's 26th Season, this humorous & whimsical interactive performance reanimates Dickens’ timeless seasonal holiday classic with humor and heart. Ride along with Scrooge on the Salem Trolley as the classic tale is brought to life in a completely unexpected way.

Tour departs from Salemdipity, 86 Wharf Street (Pickering Wharf), Salem.  Please arrive 15 minutes prior to show time.  Show starts inside Salemdipity.

Visit for tickets and information.

Posted by Kate on 11/09 at 12:00 PM Permalink

Monet, Renoir and Matisse paint the life aquatic

Claude Monet, Sailboats on the Seine, 1874

The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) opens an exhibition that demonstrates why Impressionism continues to fascinate and intrigue over a century later. With more than 90 paintings, prints, models and photographs, Impressionists on the Water tells the story of how living near France’s waterways and oceans influenced one of the world’s most enduring artistic movements. The sparkle and play of light on water proved irresistible to key Impressionists. Rippling seas, dancing reflections and sailboats propelled by strong winds animate the art of Manet, Monet, Renoir, Caillebotte, Pissarro, Sisley, Seurat, Signac and many others on view at PEM from November 9, 2013 to February 17, 2014.  

“While the Impressionists have been popularly celebrated for generations, this exhibition introduces aspects of their work not often explored,” said Daniel Finamore, PEM’s Russell W. Knight Curator of Maritime Art and History. “Rather than viewing Impressionism as a moment of schism and revolution, we see how artists handled maritime subject matter from the birth of the movement, through its creative evolution and the lasting impact of the Impressionists’ vision of the sea in art.”

Through this exhibition, we gain an appreciation for the inherent sensitivity that Impressionist artists showed for both the qualities of water and the appearance of the boats. Not weighed down by history, they painted what they saw and articulated it as a wholly modern subject. The juxtaposition of paintings and models allow us to observe how the artists interpreted forms of specific boats, as well as appreciate how that interpretation varied from more traditional maritime art of the day.  

Gustave Caillebotte, Boating on the Yerres (Périssoires sur L'Yerres)

Artists and sailors
The faithful representation of watercraft – apparent despite the freehandedness of technique –  owes much to the artists’ accomplishments as sailors and yachtsmen spending many hours at sea, on riverboats, leisure craft and floating studios.

Among the most skilled was Gustave Caillebotte. A sailor, boat designer and successful racer, he depicted the watercraft and nautical conditions he experienced at his family’s estate on the banks of the Seine. Caillebotte is considered France’s most successful yachtsman-artist of the 19th century, responsible for the design and creation of nearly 25 boats. He depicted his boating prowess in his 1893 work, Regatta at Argenteuil – himself at the helm, striking a nonchalant pose as he steers the sailboat’s tiller with remarkable ease, using just a fingertip.

Inspired by the example of Charles-François Daubigny’s floating studio, Monet built his own studio boat in the mid-1870s to be ever closer to the water. The vessel, depicted at its mooring in his 1874 painting, gave the artist a near-waterline perspective of the landscape, and the atmospheric conditions of the river environment. That singular perspective – a framing of light, water and sky – is celebrated throughout this exhibition.


Organizing co-curators for Impressionists on the Water are Christopher Lloyd, former Surveyor of Queen Elizabeth II’s collection; Phillip Dennis Cate, former director of the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University; and Daniel Charles, author and historian of marine technology. Daniel Finamore, PEM’s Russell W. Knight Curator of Maritime Art and History, is coordinating curator.


Impressionists on the Water is organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Support provided by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. Additional support provided by the East India Marine Associates of the Peabody Essex Museum.

Auguste Renoir, Oarsmen at Chatou

Impressionists on the Water opens at PEM

OPENING FESTIVAL: Sunday, November 10 |  11 am–4:30 pm

GALLERY TALK: Up Close with the Artists | 11 am, meet at information desk
Join Impressionists on the Water co-curator and art historian Christopher Lloyd for a tour of the paintings, prints, models and photographs on view.

PRESENTATION: Making an Impression | 1:30–2:30 pm, Morse Auditorium
Exhibition co-curator Christopher Lloyd explains the vision behind the exhibition and highlights key works. He’s joined for a brief conversation and Q&A by PEM’s Daniel Finamore, The Russell W. Knight Curator of Maritime Art and History and coordinating curator of Impressionists on the Water.

ART MAKING: Rope Something Together | 1–4 pm, Atrium
Learn some simple knotting techniques and then create your own Turk’s Head bracelet.

FILM: The Impressionists: Painting and Revolution, The Great Outdoors | 3:30–4:30 pm, Morse Auditorium
Art critic, writer and filmmaker Waldemar Januszczak visits the vistas, often along the water’s edge, that inspired Impressionist artists.



Boats Moored at Le Petit-Gennevilliers (traditionally Sailboats on the Seine), 1874, Claude Monet. Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Gift of Bruno and Sadie Adriani 1962.23. ©Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. 

Boating on the Yerres (Périssoires sur L'Yerres), Gustave Caillebotte. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of the Milwaukee Journal Company, in honor of Miss Faye McBeath. Photograph by John R. Glembin.

Oarsmen at Chatou, Auguste Renoir. National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. Gift of Sam A. Lewisohn, Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.

Posted by Kate on 11/08 at 10:17 AM Permalink

Salem Winter Market Opens Thursday

The Salem Winter Market kicks off in Old Town Hall this Thursday. “The Winter Market is a fantastic opportunity to support local farms and artisans through the holiday season,” states Kylie Sullivan, manager of Salem Main Streets and organizer of the market. “We’re very excited to showcase so many summer famers’ market favorites as well as some new vendors in this historic space.”  

The Winter Market will include produce from local farms, pasture-fed meat, spices, pickles, soup, baked goods, artisan soap, jewelry, wreaths, and more. All items are grown or produced in New England. The market will run six weeks on Thursdays from 3 – 6 p.m., Nov.7 through Dec. 19.  There will be no market the week of Thanksgiving.

Old Town Hall is adjacent to Derby Square where the summer farmers’ market is held.

Salem MA Winter Market at Old Town Hall

Current vendors at the 2013 Winter Market include:

Farm Vendors (produce): Clark Farm, Grant Family Farm, Long Hill Orchard & Farm, Wally's Vegetables

Non-Farm Vendors (not produce): Big Sky Bakery (bread), Fishwives Specialty Foods/Mandy’s Seafood Chowder (chowder), Piper Ranch (meat), Salem Spice (spices, also selling Maitland Mountain Farm’s pickles), Valicenti Organico (pasta/sauces), Wolf Meadow Farm (cheese)

Artisan Vendors: Salem Soapworks, Shine Jewelry/Heritage Industries

For more information, visit


The market is made possible through the generous support of Mayor Kimberley Driscoll and the City of Salem, the Salem Chamber of Commerce, and Mass in Motion Salem, as well as numerous volunteers.  The market participates in the SNAP program and will accept the EBT card at the market. 

Posted by Kate on 11/04 at 10:31 AM Permalink

Salem Fall Restaurant Week Starts November 3rd!

2013 Fall Salem Restaurant Week

Salem Fall Restaurant Week is set to kickoff on Sunday, November 3, featuring the best local cuisine at value pricing.  For 10 days only, participating Salem  restaurants will offer either a two-course prix-fixe dinner menu for $18, or a three-course prix-fixe dinner menu for $28, or both (note that this price does not include drinks, taxes or gratuities).

Click here for the list of participating restaurants and their menus.  Please contact restaurants directly to make reservations, and be sure to mention "Restaurant Week" when you call!

Posted by Kate on 11/01 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Happy Halloween!

It's Halloween and the Boston Red Sox are World Champions. All seems right, if not a little groggy, in the world. 

If you are planning to celebrate Halloween with us in Salem, please heed our words of wisdom (we've done this before):  Arrive early, do not bring any weapons (real or fake), and understand that the party is over at 10:30 after the fireworks.

Don't drive! Take the MBTA Commuter Rail or the Salem Ferry!  The Commuter Rail has special expanded service tonight to get you in and out of Salem. 

Note that there will be downtown road closures in the late afternoon, they are not planned for earlier than 5:00 PM but roads will be closed for personal safety reasons if pedestrian traffic gets to heavy. 

Halloween Road Closures in Salem MA

Click here for a printable list of events and guidelines for Halloween night, and visit for complete information on Haunted Happenings and Halloween.

Happy Halloween!

Posted by Kate on 10/31 at 09:12 AM Permalink

Dracula’s Guest checks into Salem Theatre Company for Haunted Happenings

Salem Theatre Company, 90 Lafayette Street Salem will present Dracula’s Guest as their entry for the 2013 Haunted Happenings celebration.  Written and directed by Dann Anthony Maurno, the production runs through 31, Tuesday through Sunday at 5:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., and 8:30 p.m. There will be a final showing on Saturday November 2 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets are $15.

Dracula’s Guest captures the “journey into terror” which is the first 60 pages of Bram Stoker’s classic.  The production features a unique staging; a Victorian-style reading, with visual and sound effects, and a few magical surprises.

The production is suggested for teens and up.

“This is Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” says Maurno. “Hollywood and pop culture have turned the Count into a tragic anti-hero in search of love; the sexy alternative to plodding Victorian men. That’s not what Stoker had in mind. His Dracula is a warlord in search of the mightiest empire available, which at the time was Great Britain.  Stoker’s Dracula didn’t care about love or attraction. He cared about world dominance.”

Maurno believes Dracula is pop culture’s greatest villain. “He’s always on the internet’s Top Ten lists, but deserves top billing. The shark from ‘Jaws’ can tear you limb from limb, Hannibal Lechter can eat your spleen and The Godfather can have you whacked. Only Dracula can damn you to Hell.”

The cast includes Maurno as the Count and Conor Burke as the young Jonathan Harker, both of Salem.  Joining them are Maureen Bucell, Matthew Corbo, Emma Goodman and Natalie Miller.  Set & Sound Design is by John Fogle, Lighting Design by Gregory Mancusi-Ungaro, Magical Effects are by Evan Northrup.

Tickets for Dracula’s Guest are $15 are available online at or by calling Ovation Tix at 866-811-4111. Salem Theatre Company performs at the STC Theatre, 90 Lafayette Street in downtown Salem.

Posted by Kate on 10/29 at 08:40 AM Permalink

Angie Miller and “Exiting the Fall” to Perform on Salem Common on Halloween Night

American Idol finalist Angie Miller will play on Salem Common on Halloween night. She will be joined by her brother's band, “Exiting the Fall.”

Angie Miller to play on Halloween in Salem MA

The concert is free and open to all.

Exiting the Fall, including band members Matt Vacaro, Filipe Inacio, Kevin Klein, Jon Miller, and DJ Williams, will play at 7:00 PM

Angie Miller will perform at 8:00 PM

Everyone is encouraged to celebrate the finale of Salem Haunted Happenings on Washington Street at 10:15 PM.

Exiting the Fall. Photo: Facebook


Posted by Kate on 10/28 at 10:25 AM Permalink

The Marble Faun

Have you visited The Marble Faun at 131 Essex Street? It's a new, literary-inspired gift shop filled with flight, fancy, fun, and fiction.  Since the closing of Cornerstone Books, Salem is in need of another book shop, and The Marble Faun is stocking its shelves with classic romance and mystery.  The works of Hawthorne, Poe, and Austen are prevalent here, as is Steampunk and a bit of Sherlock Holmes.  The gift selection includes soaps, candles, jewelry, t-shirts (and more), all with literary themes or Salem connections. 

The Marble Faun, by the way, is named for the short story by Nathaniel Hawthorne.  This store is steeped in literature and history, and fun.

The Marble Faun Books

Books, paper, quills, journals


The Marble Faun Manliness

A collection of Manliness (side by side with Snake Oil and Rum Cups!)


The Marble Faun Kitty Soaps

Apparently the bad kitty soaps are slightly more popular than the pretty kitty soaps!


Marble Faun Venetian Masks

Venetian masks to transform the most mundane clothes into an elegant Halloween costume.

  • The Marble Faun
  • 131 Essex Street
  • Salem, MA 01970
  • Find them on Facebook
Posted by Kate on 10/26 at 08:00 AM Permalink

October jewelry at Treasures over Time

If you're looking for a Halloween souvenir that you can wear home, check out Treasures over Time at 139 Washington Street for their unique Salem charms, Halloween themed earrings and pendants and glass pumpkins (which you probably can't wear home, but you'll want to carry them carefully!).  You will find a wonderful assortment of jewelry, coins, art, and accessories at Treasures over Time, but these seasonally-themed items are particularly relevant today!

Salem bead at Treasures over Time

Similar to other popular beaded bracelets, who doesn't want a "I Love Salem" bead?!


Halloween Charms at Treasures over Time

Ghosts, skeletons, pumpkins, spiders, oh my!


Halloween earings at Treasures over Time

Ghosts, skeletons, bats (you guessed it,) Oh My!


Glass Pumpkinsat Treasures over Time

These pumpkins are beautiful, especially their glass stems.  Each one is an original.

Posted by Kate on 10/25 at 09:00 AM Permalink

The History of Halloween - in 3D!

The History of Halloween Poster If you are "into" Halloween, you need to get yourself into CinemaSalem this month to see the Hisory of Halloween in 3-D.  This is the fourth in a series of productions by CinemaSalem, directed by Paul Van Ness, that examines the history of Salem and the North Shore.  The predecessors, The True 1692 3-D, The Spirit of Salem, and This Perfect Place are all excellent productions that leave even the most knowledgeable Salemite with a slightly new perspective or a new tidbit of history that we may have not known, or at least we forgot about it for a bit. The History of Halloween is no exception.

A fun, entertaining, and historical jaunt from Celtic times (BC) to present day Salem, The History of Halloween addresses the origins of the holiday, its evolution over centuries and continents, and how it landed in this bewitching seaport of Salem.  Even our friends in Anoka, Minnesota, get a mention as the "other" Halloween capital of the world.  The cast is largely comprised of local professional actors, and it always provides us a chuckle to see our friends on the big screen. 

The film does an especially good job addressing how Salem, the home of the tragic Salem Witch Trials of 1692, became known internationally for its Haunted Happenings festival. 

Show times for this 35-minute film are below. Tickets can be purchased online at Adult tickets cost $9.00, Senior/Child/Student tickets cost $7.50. 

  • Thu, Oct 24:  (9:30 AM), (3:00), (4:00), (5:00), 6:00, 7:00
  • Fri, Oct 25: (3:00), (4:00), (5:00), 6:00, 7:00, 8:00
  • Sat, Oct 26 - Sun, Oct 27: (11:00 AM), (12:00), (1:00), (2:00), (3:00), (4:00), (5:00), 6:00, 7:00, 8:00
  • Mon, Oct 28 - Wed, Oct 30: (3:00), (4:00), (5:00), 6:00, 7:00, 8:00
  • Thu, Oct 31: (11:00 AM), (1:00), (2:00), (3:00), (4:00), (5:00)
Posted by Kate on 10/24 at 01:29 PM Permalink

National Historic Sites in Salem and Saugus Reopen to the Public

Salem Maritime National Historic Site Custom House. Photo: Jared Charney

Salem Maritime and Saugus Iron Works National Historic Sites reopened to the public today.  Visitors can now access the visitor centers, bookstores, restrooms, grounds and historic buildings located at both sites.  Free ranger-led tours for the visiting public and school programs for local students have resumed normal October schedules.  Both Salem Maritime and Saugus Iron Works have been closed since October 1 due to the lapse in Congressional appropriations.

“We are excited happy to be back at work and welcome visitors to both Salem and Saugus,” said Superintendent Michael Quijano-West. “Autumn is a particularly special season to enjoy all that these two parks have to offer.”

Visitors should check the website of both parks to get detailed operating hours and tour information before departing for the park.

Salem Maritime National Historic Site

Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site

Posted by Kate on 10/17 at 03:45 PM Permalink

Legendary Locals of Salem

Legendary Locals of Salem

Does Salem still have legends?  According to the new book, Legendary Locals of Salem written by Jerome M. Curley, Dorothy V. Malcolm and Nelson L. Dionne, and published by Arcadia Publishers, there are MANY who qualify as Salem's legends! Come celebrate the living legends and honor the historical ones profiled in their book at the Book Launch Party to be held at Hawthorne Hotel Ballroom, 18 Washington Sq., Salem on October 23, 2013 from 6pm-9pm. The event is FREE and open to the public. Entertainment by Salem's own Julie Dougherty and pianist Claude Fournier.  Larry Young and Susanne Powers, the MusicalPASTimes duo, will also perform antique fiddle music dressed in 18th century period dress.  Authors will sign books, which are available for sale.   Artwork by local artists will be on display.   Refreshments and Cash Bar.

Posted by Kate on 10/16 at 08:30 AM Permalink

Longboards Cafe compliments Pickering Wharf

There's a new eatery on Pickering Wharf, and it is a great compliment to the restaurants that have been anchoring the Wharf for years.  Longboards Cafe has take-out and sit down, a full bar, shuffleboard, flat-screen TVs (especially important during October in Red Sox nation), and a fresh, easy-to-navigate menu.

Longboards offers a menu of salads, flatbreads, and sandwiches that  keeps it simple, and keeps it good.  When we went, we shared the Caesar Salad, the Hummus and homemade pita chips, and a few flatbreads.  It was a good amount of food, with a few slices of flatbread leftover for lunch the next day, and for a family of four we were in and out for approximately $50. 

Hummus Plate at Longboards Cafe



You will find Longboards Cafe at 72 Wharf Street on Pickering Wharf. Stop by for lunch or dinner, and tell them Destination Salem sent you! 

Posted by Kate on 10/14 at 11:02 AM Permalink

Goodnight, Captain White – Salem’s Hysterical Maritime Mystery

Good Night Captain White

This October, Rockafellas Restaurant serves up a 5-star event for Haunted Happenings—blending an exquisite maritime meal and a notorious Salem murder imagined by the creators of Cry Innocent.  

It's 1830, and all friends and well-wishers are invited to attend a retirement party thrown by the fabulously wealthy sea captain Joseph White. But enemies and ill-wishers also arrive dressed to kill and bent on revenge. Who delivers the mortal blow? The beleaguered Daniel Webster must figure out who-dunit and how.

High Tea or Plated Dinner seating times. Cash Bar. Tickets are $24-$50. 

REVIEWS of Goodnight, Captain White
“a provocative script…dialogue with the tone of a Gilbert & Sullivan operetta” –Lowell Sun
“an ideal production for a dinner theatre” –Essex County Newspapers
“rich with innuendo… a talented cast… a night of good fun”Destination Salem
“a hysterical interactive whodunit…lots of fun and laughter” –The Salem News
“a spritely murder mystery… dashedly clever” –Georgetown Record
“a zany who-done it… it captivates you” –Eagle Tribune
“a tour de force… a fun worthwhile evening out” –Weekender

October 11 - 13, 18 - 20. High Tea or Plated Dinner seating times. Cash Bar. Tickets are $24-$50. 

Colonial Hall, upstairs at Rockafellas Restaurant

231 Essex Street, Salem MA, 01970.

Tickets are available via Tickets purchased at the door will be show-only (no high tea or plated dinner).  

See Facebook to check the pre-party gossip.

Posted by Guest on 10/05 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Family Friendly Haunted Happenings

The 32nd annual Salem Haunted Happenings kicks off with the Grand Parade on October 3, and continues through the month of October with a schedule rich in programming for all ages.  Bring the family for Free Film Nights on Salem Common, one of the kids’ costume parades, the carnival, or the Big Draw Festival at the Peabody Essex Museum.  Haunted Happenings is sure to be a celebration of Halloween and Fall in New England for all ages.

Yip Yips at Salem Haunted Happenings. Photo: Jared Charney


  • Trick or Treat with the Mayor
  • October 4, 5 :30 pm – 6 :30 pm
  • Join Mayor Driscoll for Trick-or-Treating at the East India Fountain. We will trick-or-Treat along the Essex Street Pedestrian Mall, The Museum Place Mall Shops, and beyond. Trick-or-Treat Bags provided. Costumes encouraged.
  • East India Fountain (Pedestrian Mall) | 978-745-9595 |


  • Wicked Weekends at Gallows Hill Museum/Theatre
  • October 5, 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27; 12 pm - 6 pm
  • Entertainment abounds at Gallows Hill Museum/Theatre, with face painting, and appearances by Hell Boy, Beetlejuice, Zombie George, and more. T-shirt and postcard giveaways to those waiting in line! (character appearances vary, depending on availability) Weather permitting.
  • 7 Lynde St | 978-825-0222 |


  • Caine’s Arcade Global Challenge at the Phoenix School
  • October 5, 9 am – 12 pm
  • A global day of fun as teams create arcade games out of cardboard, recycled materials, tape and imagination. All ages. Register team at Donation of $10 per team.
  • 89 Margin Street | 978-741-0870 |


  • The Big Draw Festival
  • October 4, 5 pm – 8 pm, October 5, 10 am - 4 pm 
  • This year PEM joins the internationally acclaimed campaign, celebrated for its ambitious reach and simple goal: To get everyone drawing. Come create your own sketchbook, discover the meditative benefits of zentangle or leave your mark on the world in sidewalk paint. Grab a crayon and your imagination and please remember everyone can draw if given the chance.
  • Peabody Essex Museum | 978-745-9500 |


  • Salem Chamber of Commerce Haunted Biz Baz Street Fair
  • October 5 & 6, 10 am – 8 pm
  • Shop for uniquely Salem items, be entertained by street performers, and listen to great music. More than 100 venders will be present on the Essex Street Pedestrian Mall.
  • Essex Street Pedestrian Mall |


  • Radio 92.9 Haunted Movies Series
  • Salem October 5, 12, 19, 26; 6:30 pm – 8 pm
  • Bring your blankets and beach chairs for an open-air movie on Salem Common. Hosted by Radio 92.9.
  • Casper the Friendly Ghost – October 5
  • The Haunted Mansion – October 12
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas – October 19
  • Hocus Pocus – October 26
  • Salem Common |


  • Professor Wunders’ School of Magic
  • October 6, 13, 20, 27; 11 am – 12 pm
  • A fantastic event for families, with fun special effects and audience participation! Learn the basics of magic, and cast exciting spells with Professor Wunders. Every child receives a magic glow ring as a gift before the show. Free pictures with the Wizard on stage after the show. $12 per person. This show sells out quickly, so buy tickets online.
  • 7 Lynde St (Gallows Hill Museum Theater) | 978-825-0222 |


  • Story Trails: Maxed Out!
  • October 5, 2 pm – 3 pm
  • Be inspired to draw outside the lines with “Art & Max” by David Wiesner. Made possible by Target. Program is for children 5 to 8 with adult.
  • Peabody Essex Museum | 978-745-9500 |


  • Salem Open Market
  • October 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, 31; 11am - 10pm
  • Includes an extensive selection of arts/crafts with a group of indie makers and designers.
  • Derby Square, Essex Street, Hawthorne Boulevard (Halloween Only)


  • Haunted Happenings Carnival
  • October 18 - 31; Sun-Thurs 2-9 pm, Fri-Sat 12:00 - 10:00 pm
  • Step right up to Fiesta Shows while visiting Salem and act your age somewhere else! Games, rides and all the fun rolled up in one!
  • Derby Street


  • Art and Nature Center Re-Opening with “Beyond Human” Exhibition
  • October 19, 10 am – 4 :30 pm
  • Come take a walk on the wild side of art as we celebrate the opening of the redesigned Art & Nature Center! Meet participating artists from “Beyond Human, Artist-Animal Collaborations”, learn to dance like a bird, contribute to our collaborative environmental rangoli and more. Free Admission.
  • Peabody Essex Museum | 978-745-9500 |


  • Providence Grays Baseball Game
  • October 19, 11 am – 2 pm
  • Come see baseball the way it was played during the time of the Civil War. See the Providence Grays take on the Brooklyn Atlantics in two 1864 style vintage base ball games. See how much the game has changed from the time of no gloves, wool uniforms, and heavy wooden bats.
  • Salem Common |


  • Annual Children’s Halloween Parade & Costume Party
  • October 19, 12 pm – 3 pm
  • Children ages 3-10 are invited to Salem Common in custume to parade down Essex Street to a costume competition in Derby Square. Parade Registration at 11:00am, parade begins at noon. Costume party from 1:00pm - 3:00pm at the Phoenix School. Rain location: 89 Margin St. $10 admission for both events.
  • Salem Common & 89 Margin Street |


Salem Haunted Happenings begins on October 3 and continues through Halloween, October 31. For a complete list of events and attractions, visit    

Posted by Kate on 10/04 at 08:00 AM Permalink

You Got Empathy. Now Take Action!

Taking action against intimidation

If you missed “Got Empathy? Empathy in the World of 1692 and Now,” you missed a conversation people are still talking about.  We’re lucky to live in a city where folks don’t just pay lip service to “understanding our differences” and “standing up for the rights of others.” People think about what happened here, and they act to keep alive the lessons of 1692. Here’s another event that represents Salem at its best. It promises to be another great conversation!

Taking Action Against Intimidation
A forum on abuse of power, bullying, and what we can do about it

Guest Moderator: R.D. Sahl

Anti-Defamation League, Boston Alliance of  Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth,  Essex County District Attorney’s Victim Assistance Office

Healing Abuse, Working for Change (HAWC), the social psychology of bullying, a victim of a hate crime

Saturday, October 5th, 9 AM to 12:30 PM
Veterans Hall, Salem State University
Presented by the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at SSU
Details at


Posted by Shelby Hypes for the Salem Award Foundation

Posted by Guest on 10/03 at 07:20 AM Permalink

Volunteers fill in where government shut down


Everything is open in Salem, and Salem Haunted Happenings is in full swing!  Due to the shutdown, the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, including the tall ship Friendship, Custom House, and Derby House, is closed to tours, and the Salem Regional Visitor Center is closed.  This includes the public restrooms at the visitor center and Central Wharf.  The City of Salem has provided extra porta-potties outside of the visitor center, and an information table will be open in front of the Visitor Center daily during the Shutdown from 9:00 AM - 4:30 PM.  Our information table is being staffed by volunteers from the Salem community, so please stop by and say hello, pick up a map and get answers to your Salem questions!

Salem, Massachusetts creates a temporary information booth, provides bathrooms for visitors arriving for October’s Haunted Happenings festival

Haunted Happenings logoDozens of volunteers have come together to staff a temporary visitor information booth outside of the National Park Service Salem Regional Visitor Center in Salem, Massachusetts, during the Government Shutdown.  Coming on the eve of Salem’s busiest month when more than 250,000 visitors are expected to arrive for the 32nd annual Salem Haunted Happenings festival, the closing of the visitor center and its public restrooms has required the City to come together and fill the gap left by the government shutdown.

The National Park Service has two locations in Salem: the Regional Visitor Center (2 New Liberty Street) and the Salem Maritime National Historic Site (160 Derby Street).   Over the course of October, the National Park Service Rangers and volunteers can serve more than 125,000 visitors from around the world in the visitor center alone.   Tourism in Salem is estimated to generate more than $100 million during the course of the year, and approximately 25% of that comes during October and the Salem Haunted Happenings festival.

In an attempt to address visitors’ needs typically served by the National Park Service, the city of Salem has provided portable toilets, and a temporary visitor information booth has been organized by Destination Salem, the Salem Office of Tourism & Cultural Affairs, a public-private partnership.  On the first day of the shutdown, the information booth served more than 375 people from around the world, including Switzerland, Australia, Italy, Israel, the UK, Germany, Canada, and throughout the United States.
“We spend all year recommending people set their GPS for 2 New Liberty Street in Salem, park in the garage, and begin their visit at the NPS visitor center,” says Destination Salem executive director Kate Fox, “It isn’t fair to them for their welcome to be a piece of paper saying the National Park is closed.”

While the government shutdown has closed the two National Park sites in Salem, all of the City’s museums, attractions, tours, activities, restaurants, and shops remain open.  An additional information booth, managed by Salem Main Streets, will be open at the intersection of Washington Street and Essex Street on October 3 and be open on October weekends.  In addition, the Salem Chamber of Commerce offices have been serving as a visitor information center in their Essex Street location, and some attractions, including the Salem Witch Museum, are making their restrooms available to the public, not just their paying customers.  

“The impact of the closure of our National Park Service Regional Visitor Center and the Salem Maritime National Historical site has presented a logistical obstacle as we start our busiest tourist season,” says Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll, “Nevertheless, we are resilient and are working through it pro-actively. Salem is open for business and ready to welcome the thousands of costumed revelers who come to our City every day through the month of October.”

Salem Haunted Happenings kicks off with the Grand Parade on October 3 and continues through Halloween night.  Complete festival information can be found at  

Posted by Kate on 10/02 at 06:46 PM Permalink

2nd Annual Salem Costume Swap Day

This was a great event last year - but get there early for the best selection!

Do you have a closet full of costumes that you would never dare be seen in again or some that will never fit your children again? Can’t think of what to be this year? Don’t have thousands of dollars to spend on costumes for the entire family? We have the perfect solution for you...come to the Salem Costume Swap!!

Here’s how it works:  

  • Donate your swap-able costumes at the Salem Senior Center. Empty your closet as a recycle/cleaning house project, you may drop off gently used adult, kid or pet costumes at the Salem Senior Center starting on September 12th during normal hours. We will also accept Halloween accessories.
  • In exchange for each complete, clean, gently worn costume, you will receive 1 swap ticket to claim a new-to-you costume at the 10/12 event.
  • No costume to swap? Still want to shop? No Problem! Stop by the Salem Boys & Girls Club on 10/12 to purchase any costume for $5. Proceeds will benefit Salem youth programs.
  • There will be a kids coloring table at the 10/12 event with lots of cool coloring pages!
  • There will also be light refreshments available.

Did you know?
Swapping the costumes of only half of the children who celebrate Halloween would reduce annual landfill waste by 6,250 tons, equivalent to the weight of 2,500 midsize cars.

Hosted by Salem Park Recreation & Community Services & Supported by Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem
Date: Sat. October 12 (National Costume Swap Day)
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Fee: $5 per costume or swap costumes for free!
Place:  Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem, 13 Hawthorne Boulevard

Posted by Kate on 10/02 at 08:48 AM Permalink

Happy October from Salem Haunted Happenings!

Salem Haunted Happenings Poster

Salem Haunted Happenings steps off with the Grand Parade on Thursday, October 3.  Join us during October for the 32nd annual celebration of Halloween and Fall in New England that we call Salem Haunted Happenings.  You will find a complete listing of events, programs, tours, attractions, psychics, and more at

Happy October!

Posted by Kate on 10/01 at 07:30 AM Permalink

No better setting for The Crucible

Salem Theatre Company presents Arthur Miller's The Crucible

There is no better setting for a performance of Arthur Miller's The Crucible then Salem. This is the setting. This is it.  Arthur Miller's portrayal of the Salem Witch Trials, and of a community gripped by hysteria, is true and relevant to so much that has happened in the world since 1692, and Salem Theatre Company's production of the play is hauntingly effective.

STC has converted  its theatre into a 17th-century woods bathed in blue moonlight, and they further set the scene with an eerie drumbeat that transports the audience back to a time of afflicted girls, family struggles, and personal conviction.  The performances are emotional, especially those of Dave Rich as John Proctor and Linda Goetz as Elizabeth Proctor. 

The story takes us from the Parris household to the Proctor home, to the Meetinghouse, and then Salem Jail.  These characters, and this story are so familiar to those of us immersed in the Salem story every day, and we risk taking their lessons for granted.  This production of The Crucible reminds us that society is fallible and staying true to oneself can be the most difficult thing to do.   

Arthur Miller’s The Crucible
directed by John Fogle

September 26 – October 19
Thursday – Saturday at 7:30 PM / Sunday at 5:00 PM
Buy Tickets

Running Time: 160 minutes

Posted by Kate on 09/30 at 11:54 AM Permalink

Farmers’ Market Goodness

I wish I could say this is my favorite season for the Salem Farmers' Market, but I love every week at the Farmers' Market from June through the end of October.  The fruits of the season include potatoes, beans, pumpkins, tomatoes, flowers... and more. 

Here are a few photos from the September 19 Farmers' Market to inspire you to stop by Derby Square between 3:00 - 7:00 PM on Thursdays between now and October 24.

Beans at the Salem Farmers' Market

Salem Farmers Market - Carrots

Salem Farmers Market - Flowers

Salem Farmers Market Pears

Salem Farmers Market Pumpkins

Salem Farmers' Market is produced by Salem Main Streets.


Posted by Kate on 09/26 at 10:56 AM Permalink

Salem resident aims to break and set new drumming world-record to raise money for Boys & Girls Club

Wynotts Wands for drumming

Salem musician Aaron Z. Katz from the pop-ambient duo The Dejas aims to drum 30 hours straight in an effort to break and set a new world-record for drumming in a retail store while raising money and awareness for the Boys & Girls Club of Salem music program. And in true Salem-fashion, he intends to do it with wands at the new Wynotts Wands shop on Essex Street.

The current record-holder is singer-songwriter and professional party animal, Andrew W.K., set in June 2013 at an Oakley’s New York Times Square flagship retail store who broke and set the previous record with 24 hours of non-stop drumming.

Children, tourists, artists and residents are invited to get involved and bring their own instruments to participate and show solidarity for the music program’s initiative. "Breaking the record is something I wanted to do to bring the community together," Katz said. "These kids [at the Boys & Girls Club] have so much energy and they're drooling for the music, but they're not getting that type of music in school."

"I applaud his goal," said Joanne Scott, executive director at the Boys & Girls Club of Salem. "It's definitely one of the most unique ways that anyone has tried to raise money for the club. I like that he's incorporating a musical challenge in raising money for a musical program."

The fundraising goal for the event is $5,000 and will rely on donations from the community, local businesses and corporate sponsors. People are encouraged to share their music magic stories and media on the campaign’s user-generated tumblr page: . Contributions can be made by visiting For sponsorship opportunities, please email Joanne Scott at

Posted by Kate on 09/24 at 07:26 AM Permalink

Gimme Shelter Birdhouse Auction

Gimme Shelter Birdhouse Auction Poster

A silent auction of birdhouses made by local artists and the community at large will take place in a fun-filled public event on Artists' Row in Salem Massachusetts on Sunday, September 29, 2013 from 1:00 - 3:00.  Live music and food from local restaurants will be provided.

Birdhouses will be on display throughout the each artists' spaces on Artists' Row.  Live music by local favorites, BlackDogBrother.  The public will be invited to help make a popsicle stick birdhouse which will be hung on display on Artists' Row throughout the 2013 season.

The Northeast Animal Shelter, established in 1976, is one of New England's largest nonprofit shelters that does not destroy any of the pets entrusted to its care.  Receiving no local, state or federal funding The Northeast Animal Shelter is entirely dependent on contributions to cover its annual operating budget.  Formerly hosted by Roost Salem, the Gimme Shelter Birdhouse Auction benefiting the shelter has changed hands to Salem Collective of Artists and Musicians and the groups on Artists' Row, around the corner from Roost between Front and New Derby Streets. 

Salem Collective of Artists and Musicians is a non-profit artists' organization producing and selling art in the heart of Salem on Artists' Row.  Other participating art groups include Serendipitish and Social Palates also of Artists' Row.

For more information, visit

Posted by Kate on 09/22 at 08:42 AM Permalink

Take advantage of Trails and Sails this weekend, and next

Trails and Sails

Explore Essex County's cultural, historic and natural sites during two weekends of 150+ FREE events during Trails & Sails: Two Weekends of Walks and Water, September 20-22 & September 27-29, 2013! Enjoy a variety of guided tours, open house visits, hikes, walks, paddles, and other special experiences for all ages, skill levels and interests. All events are located within the 34 cities and towns of Essex County including the communities of Salem, Gloucester, Newburyport, Andover, Saugus and many more.

Below is a list of events planned in Salem. Please visit for complete information, maps, and a customizable itinerary (not to mention the scores of events being hosted in the 33 other communities in Essex County!).

1812 Privateer FAME: Go Sail!
Hosted by Schooner Fame
Cruise the historic waters of Salem Sound aboard a full-scale replica of the 1812 privateer schooner FAME! Aboard the FAME, passengers learn about the fishermen, pirates, privateers, traders and men of war who shaped our North Shore. They learn about the fishing trade that prompted Cape Ann's first European settlements; the brave little schooners of George Washington's fleet; the East India trade that made Salem rich; and, of course, the privateers of the Revolution and the War of 1812.  Event capacity: 32.  Special Instructions: Limited Availability! No reservations. Booth opens at 10:30AM. First come, first served - one ticket per person. 80 Wharf Street, Pickering Wharf Marina.
Sun 09-29 11:00am-12:45pm

A Season in the Gables Garden
Hosted by The House of the Seven Gables
Learn about the challenges, successes and failures of maintaining an historic garden. How are we adapting to a new climate? How are we finding sources for older varieties of plant material? How are we dealing with new plant diseases? These are just a few of the issues we will discuss in this presentation that follows our garden through an entire growing season.  Event capacity: 100.  Special Instructions: Reservations Required: To reserve, please email 115 Derby Street
Sat 09-21 2:00pm-3:30pm

Guided Tour: Faberge Revealed Exhibit
Hosted by Peabody Essex Museum
Guided tour of the Peabody Essex Museum's exhibit, "Faberge Revealed." The name Faberge is synonymous with refined craftsmanship, jeweled luxury and the Russian imperial family. Over 230 singular treasures created by the House of Faberge in the late 19th and early 20th centuries are featured, including enameled clocks, gold cigarette cases, hardstone carvings, ruby encrusted brooches and four signature imperial eggs made for Nicholas II and the Romanov family. This exhibition explores ideas of luxury, innovation, entrepreneurship and imperial patronage while providing insight into Peter Carl Faberge's life, business and legacy.   Event capacity: 30. 161 Essex Street.
Fri 09-20 3:30pm-4:30pm

Marine Lab Exploration
Hosted by Cat Cove Marine Laboratory, Salem State University
The Cat Cove Marine Laboratory is operated by Salem State University to promote the sustainable use of aquatic resources on the North Shore and elsewhere. Instruction, outreach and research activities are pursued by Laboratory staff. Fish, clams and other "critters" are spawned and reared as part of instructional, restoration and enhancement efforts that have involved over 3-dozen MA towns. Participants will observe aquatic life and will learn how these organisms are used to understand and manage aquatic resources.   Event capacity: 20.  Special Instructions: Good family event. 92 Fort Street
Fri 09-20 3:30pm-5:00pm

Salem and the Abolitionist Movement
Hosted by Historic Salem, Inc.
Event Updated! Most current information is shown here. A walking tour examining the history and impact of local and national abolitionists in Salem.   Event capacity: 60.  Special Instructions: This 90 minute tour will be on city sidewalks with indoor stops at the Atheneaum and Hamilton Hall. The tour will end on Church Street. 9 North Street, Nathaniel Bowditch House
Sun 09-29 1:00pm-3:00pm

Salem Witch Trials of 1692 Walking Tour
Hosted by Salem Award Foundation
Enjoy a guided walking tour highlighting several key sites relevant to the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, including: Salem Prison (Gaol), Bridget Bishop's property, Court House, Reverend Noyes House, Judge Johnathan Hathorne Home and the Meeting House. Volunteers at each site will provide information and insight about each of these 17th-century landmarks. The tour will start at the Witch Trials Memorial at 10:00 a.m., where you will learn about the Memorial's message and continued efforts of the Salem Award Foundation to preserve the lessons of the 1692 tragedy, which remain very relevant today. Map of walk available online:  Event capacity: 50.  Special Instructions: Guided tour starts at 10am at the Witch Trials Memorial. Please allow 45 minutes for walking. Charter Street
Sat 09-21 10:00am-11:00am

Salt Marsh in the City
Hosted by Salem Sound Coastwatch
Join Salem Sound Coastwatch for a "walk and talk" at Old Creek Marsh, a beautiful and productive salt marsh located at the edge of Salem State University's Central Campus. As we walk around the marsh, we'll talk about the plants, fish, birds, insects and more that live in this marsh, which is part of the Forest River Estuary. We'll explore the role of the salt marsh in our marine ecosystem and the history of this marsh, which has been restored from an industrial dumping ground. Meet behind the Marsh Hall dormitory in the Central Campus (near the Enterprise Center.  Special Instructions: Light walking for approximately 1/2 mile on a paved and hardpacked walking path. Those interested in going onto the marsh should wear closed toed shoes that can get wet or muddy. 121 Loring Ave - SSU Central Campus.
Sat 09-28 9:30am-10:30am

Spiritual Middens
Hosted by Witch House
Enjoy Spiritual Middens: The Archaeology of Folklore - an exhibit and artifacts on display at the Witch House featuring deliberately concealed items designed to protect a home's vulnerable places, the threshold and the hearth.   Event capacity: 40.  Special Instructions: Please note that entrance to the exhibit is free to Trails & Sails event attendees from 1-3pm only. 310 Essex Street
Fri 09-20 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.
Sat 09-21 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.
Sun 09-22 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.
Fri 09-27 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.
Sat 09-28 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.
Sun 09-29 1:00pm-3:00pm  Open Door Event.

The Lady of Salem: Maritime Art
Hosted by Salem Beautification Committee
Learn about Salem's maritime history and view "Lady of Salem" public art through a guided walking tours of the "Ladies." This festive Beautification Committee public art project features over 15 artistically decorated ship figureheads adorning downtown Salem. Tours will focus on Salem's maritime history, the public art project, and Salem's community involvement in public art. Maps for self-guided tours and Lady of Salem photo opportunities will be available. The project is supported by a Salem Cultural Council grant. Visit our website and 'like' LadyofSalem on facebook.  Special Instructions: Rain Date: Sunday 9/22. Salem Maritime NHS, 160 Derby Street
Sat 09-21 11:00am-4:00pm  Tours start at 11am, 1pm and 3pm on Derby Wharf

Winter Island
Hosted by Friends of Winter Island
Spend a morning on Winter Island exploring the history, coast line, and the park itself. The Friends of Winter Island have a walking tour of Ft. Pickering and a slide presentation of the Winter Island's history. Nelson Dionne, our own historian, will be speaking together with Dr. Dane Morrison, Professor of Early American History at Salem State University and President of the New England Historical Association.  Special Instructions: Very casual walk. 50 Winter Island Road
Sat 09-21 10:00am-11:00am  11:00am-12:00pm

Posted by Kate on 09/20 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Got Empathy?

Got Empathy image

On September 26 at 7:00 PM, The Salem Award Foundation will present a panel discussion called, Got Empathy? Empathy in the World of 1692 and Now at The House of the Seven Gables.
Panelists will include:  

  • Irene Axelrod, PEM archivist  
  • Professor Emerson "Tad" Baker, Salem State University     
  • Lorri Davis
  • Damien Echols   
  • Reverend Jeff Barz-Snell  

And the discussion will be moderated by Christine Sullivan, CEO of the Enterprise Center
This special evening of shared experiences and new perspectives offers us all a chance to discover what lessons we have learned from the Salem Witchcraft Trials of 1692. Q & A session to follow.
Suggested donation $10. Free to students.
For more information visit:  

Posted by Kate on 09/19 at 08:58 AM Permalink

80 Days: A Steampunk Celebration

80 Days: A Steampunk Celebration

On Thursday, September 26, the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) is open late for its monthly evening party, PEM/PM. This month’s event celebrates time travel and globetrotting through PEM’s extensive collection of art from around the world. Join us for an evening of steampunk, a genre of science fiction that offers a Victorian take of what the future might look like, inspired by authors such as H.G. Wells and Jules Verne. The evening includes cocktails and conversation, art making, games, a chef tasting and demonstration by Brown Butter Bakery in Cambridge and a performance by Emperor Norton’s Stationary Marching Band.  

Emperor Norton‘s Stationary Marching Band combines the rich musical history of the circus with the raw energy of avant-garde jazz, burning heat of funk and irreverent fun of today's vaudeville. The Boston Globe describes the band’s distinctive sound as an “avant-garde dissonance that effectively sets the tone of the show and keeps it rocking."

Wear your favorite steampunk fashion and come, as our featured band requests, “to dance at the edge of reason, sing the song of society's fringe and drum out whatever rhythm you are called to march to.” Then take a Victorian-themed global quest via our galleries to seek answers to art-related trivia questions.

PEM/PM Evening Party
Members and Salem residents (with ID) free, nonmembers $10
Thursday, September 26, 2013 from 6:30pm - 9:30pm
Pay at the door
Location: Atrium

Posted by Kate on 09/18 at 08:30 AM Permalink

Four Salem Museums join Smithsonian’s Museum Day Live!

Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day Live

The Gedney House, the House of the Seven Gables, the Phillips House, and the Salem Witch Museum are each participating in the Ninth Annual Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day Live!  Each museum will offer free admission on Saturday, September 28 to all participants who have a Museum Day Live! ticket

If you visit the House of the Seven Gables, you will encounter architectural, maritime and literary history during a guided tour of the 350-year-old mansion, which is hailed as An American Masterpiece and a National Historic Landmark. 

The Salem Witch Museum takes a dramatic look at the witch trials of 1692. Their presentations tell the story of accusers, accused, court proceedings and execution of innocent victims. Witches: Evolving Perceptions examines the changing interpretation of the word “witch”.

Salem shipwright Eleazer Gedney built the earliest portion of the Gedney House in 1665. Originally, the house was an asymmetrical composition consisting of two rooms on the first floor, a single chamber above, and an attic with a front-facing gable. Significant renovations to the structure in 1712 and 1800 resulted in dramatic changes to the house's appearance. Gedney House was a single-family home until the Gedney family sold it in 1773 to Benjamin Cox, who used it for the next twenty-five years as an investment property. Around 1800, Cox added two townhouse-style ells to the west elevation of the house, converting it into a multi-family dwelling. During the years that followed, it served as a boarding house and tenement in what was then Salem’s Italian-American neighborhood. In 1967, Historic New England acquired the house as it was being prepared for demolition.

Phillips House is the only home on historic Chestnut Street open to the public, and it provides a glimpse into the private world of the Phillips family during the early decades of the twentieth century. The kitchen, pantry, and a domestic staff bedroom, present a rarely seen picture of how the great houses functioned as new technologies were being introduced

Smithsonian Magazine's Museum Day Live represents Smithsonian's commitment to make learning and the spread of knowledge accessible to everyone, giving museums across all 50 states the opportunity to emulate the admission policy of the Smithsonian museums in Washington, D.C. Last year's event drew over 400,000 participants, and this year's event expects record-high participation. 

The Museum Day Live! ticket is available at Visitors who present the Museum Day Live! ticket will gain free entrance for two at participating venues for one day only. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. For more information about Museum Day Live! 2013 and a list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit

Posted by Kate on 09/17 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Happy Anniversary to rouge Cosmetics!

rouge cosmetics exterior

rouge Cosmetics is celebrating their sixth anniversary by giving gifts to you!

Receive a gift with Purchase from:  

  • Stila - With $75 Stila Purchase
  • Bumble and bumble - With the Purchase of 2 Full-Size Bb Products
  • Darphin - With the Purchase of 2 Full-Size Skincare Products
  • Peter Thomas Roth - With $75 PTR Purchase
  • Mario Badescu - With $50 Mario Purchase
  • bareMinerals - With $50 bareMinerals Purchase
  • Deborah Lippmann - With the Purchase of 2 Lippmann Nail Lacquers

And, check out these anniversary events throughout September:

  • Saturday September 21st - Caudalie Facials
  • Saturday September 21st - Paula Dorf Makeup Lessons
  • Saturday September 28th - Mario Badescu Facials


Special events do fill up, so be sure to make a reservation by calling rouge at 978-740-1044.

While you are celebrating at Rouge, make sure to ask about their loyalty program.

Happy Anniversary, rouge! 

Posted by Kate on 09/16 at 08:58 AM Permalink

Public Lecture Series to Focus on Climate Change in New England

Climate Change Lecture Series

Climate scientists, local residents and national park rangers will come together to discuss the impacts of climate change on New England communities  as part of a free, public lecture series to begin on the evening of September 17th.  Salem Sound Coastwatch and the National Park Service will host five separate lectures on climate change each Tuesday evening at the NPS Regional Visitor Center (2 New Liberty St) from 7:30pm – 9pm,  September 17th – October 15th.

Representatives from Salem Sound Coastwatch, the University of New Hampshire, the U.S. Offshore Wind Collaborative,  the New England Aquarium and the National Park Service will each offer engaging presentations on the current science and observed consequences of climate change on urban communities, protected areas and regional ecosystems in New England.  Each lecture will include a public question & answer session and a discussion of strategies to address the challenge of climate change.

“Responding to climate change is one of the greatest challenge facing the National Park Service today,” said Superintendent Michael Quijano-West.  “Our national parks contain the most treasured landscapes and important historical sites in this country – places that are particularly vulnerable to climate change.  We believe that raising awareness of climate change and educating the public about the impact of these changes on our national parks - and our own backyards – is a vital part of beginning to address this global problem. ”

Dr. Cameron Wake, Research Associate Professor at the University of New Hampshire, will kick off the lecture series on September 17th with his lecture, “Climate Change in Coastal New England:  Past, Present, and Future.”  Dr. Wake also serves as director of the Carbon Solutions New England and helps lead the New Hampshire Energy and Climate Collaborative.

All lectures are free and open to the public.  Click here for more information on the lecture series, including a detailed description of each presentation.

Posted by Kate on 09/15 at 08:05 AM Permalink

A delicious bridal celebration

Salem Food Tours presented a Sasparilla soda toast at the Phillips House.

Salem Food Tours recently shared a special tour they did, and we can't resist passing it on because it's just delicious!  A private Food Tour was booked as a "Bachelorette Celebration" for a bride who is getting married at the Salem Waterfront Hotel.   It was an elegant bachelorette celebration that began at the historic Phillips House Museum on Chestnut Street and wound its way through Salem and the five senses.

Karen Scalia, your host at Salem Food Tours, prepared a special tour that was all about weddings, the history of weddings, and romance in Salem... and food, of course. Each stop and dish was selected especially for the wedding celebration, which demonstrates Karen's attention to detail with both her private and general tours. 

A private spice tasting for the bride to be and her guests at SalemSpice.

Visit to learn more about the tours, and visit Facebook to see the complete gallery of images from this unique tour-celebration. 

Posted by Kate on 09/13 at 08:47 AM Permalink

Oktoberfest is coming!

2013 Oktoberfest Poster

Get out your Lederhosen! Salem's annual Oktoberfest returns to Old Town Hall on September 14.  The German-themed event will feature beer from local breweries as well as traditional fare from Salem businesses including Polonus Deli, the Flying Saucer Pizza Company, Longboards and the Lobster Shanty. A continuous line-up of entertainment includes local acts, The Nick Consone Band, Qwill, and Freevolt.

This year's festivities will be hosted by Olga the Angry Beer Wench (played by The Griffin Theatre's own Erik Rodenhiser), a Bratwurst eating contest, the Apple Challenge, Kazookioki, and the German costume contest with prizes in each category. 

Tickets cost $20 per person and include admission, German hats and kazoos, a souvenir mug. All proceeds will benefit the Salem YMCA. Last year’s event raised over $5,000 to support the Y for All Campaign.

Beer from Blue Hills Brewing, Narragansett, Cody Brewing and Notch will be available for $2 and $3 as well as German wine. A variety of German faire will be available for purchase. Tickets can be purchased at Pamplemousse, Salem Cycle, The YMCA - all located in downtown Salem, and at the door. This event sold out the past two years, so get your tickets early!

This is a 21+ Event.

Oktoberfest is presented by Pamplemousse and Social Palates.

Posted by Kate on 09/12 at 08:47 AM Permalink

Kinross Cashmere Trunk Show this weekend

Kinross Cashmere

J.Mode is having a Kinross Cashmere Trunk Show this weekend - Thursday, September 12 through Sunday, September 15th.  Shop the entire collection (not to mention the other fabulous fashions in J.Mode) throughout the weekend. 

Thursday night will be "Ladies Night" until 8:30 PM, with cookies, cashmere, wine and cheese, and a raffle for a Cashmere scarf. 

J.Mode is located at 17 Front Street. Call (978) 744-7007 for more information.

Posted by Kate on 09/11 at 08:32 AM Permalink

Rum & Revolution aboard the Schooner FAME

Join the crew of the Schooner FAME for a unique look at the connections between Rum and Revolution this fall. 

Rum & Revolution Cruises aboard the Schooner FAME

Rum and sailors have always gotten along like wind and water! Molasses imported from the West Indies was being distilled into rum in New England from the earliest colonial times, and rum was the basis for many of the libations imbibed by the Sons of Liberty as they plotted to push Massachusetts into open rebellion against the Crown.

On this cruise, you will:

  • Set sail on a traditional gaff-rigged wooden schooner
  • See lighthouses, forts, and beautiful waterfront homes
  • Enjoy live performances of 18th-century songs
  • Learn to dance a hornpipe
  • Have the opportunity to purchase revolutionary beverages based on rum and wine

Revolutionary beverages will be available for $5 to those of age. Soda and water will also be available for $2.
During the Revolution and the War of 1812, hundreds of privateers sailed from New England ports to strike a blow for liberty. Come see what all the fuss was about! Sing the songs, drink the drinks, and sail the schooners that helped earn us our independence from Great Britain!

Rum & Revolution Cruises will sail on September 14, October 5, and October 19.  Reserve your tickets now!

Posted by Kate on 09/10 at 08:23 AM Permalink

The Guide to Salem Haunted Happenings

2013 Guide to Salem Haunted Happenings The 2013 Guide to Salem Haunted Happenings is here!  Hot off the presses, the 42-page brochure is available at the Salem Regional Visitor Center, through Destination Salem, and at locations around Salem.  In coming days it will also be available at hotels, visitor information centers, AAA offices, and attractions throughout Massachusetts and New England.

You can request yours at, and we would be happy to send one to you (free of charge, of course!).

Events, attractions, shops, restaurants, and accommodations can also be found on  The site got a make-over this year, so if you have not visited recently, please come check it out.

And, of course, all of this compliments our year-round work at  If you can't visit us in October, don't worry - we're here for the other eleven months of the year. That's why we call them the five seasons of Salem.

In the meantime, however, we are full steam ahead for Haunted Happenings.  Bring on October!

Posted by Kate on 09/05 at 02:49 PM Permalink

The Arts at Salem State University


Don Gorvett - Woodcut PrintsDon Gorvett – Woodcut: Blocks and Prints. Exhibition: September 4 – October 9. Reception: September 18, 2 pm. Winfisky Gallery. Ellison Campus Center. 352 Lafayette St., Salem State University.  Don Gorvett has produced large-scale reduction woodcut prints for decades. His command of the medium results in work of unforgettable complexity, scale and expressive power. This is a uniquely instructive exhibition where visitors will not only be able to see the prints but also the rarely-seen massive woodblocks which yield the prints. Gorvett’s works may be found in the collections of the Boston Athenaeum, the Portland Museum of Art, the Ogunquit Museum of American Art, the Cape Ann Museum, the Currier Museum of Art, and numerous corporate and private collections.

Admission to the Winfisky Gallery is free. Hours are Monday through Friday from 10-2 or by appointment. Information: 978.542.7890 or


Perry Glasser Opens the Salem State Writers Series – September 26, 7:30 pm. Free. Martin Luther King, Jr. Room. Ellison Campus Center. 352 Lafayette St., Salem State University. Professor Perry Glasser will read from his newest works, Riverton Noir, the Gival Press Novel Award winner and metamemoirs. Glasser has three times won P.E.N. Syndicated Fiction Awards. He has been a fellow-in-residence at the Norman Mailer House  and  in 2013 he was named a Fellow in Creative Nonfiction by the Massachusetts Cultural Council.


Emily DickinsonA Musical Portrait of Emily Dickinson – September 22, 2 pm. Pre-concert conversation at 1 pm.  Recital Hall. Central Campus. 71 Loring Ave. Salem State University.

This narrated musical essay is a recital of songs on texts by Massachusetts’ own Belle of Amherst, Emily Dickinson. The songs, mostly by New England composers, are woven into a script that sheds light on the life and philosophy of the reclusive poet. Performers are soprano Stephanie Mann, mezzo soprano Roselin Osser, and tenor Leslie Tay, with Beverly Soll at the piano. The afternoon includes a pre-concert conversation with poet and English faculty emerita Claire Keyes and Beverly Soll at 1 pm in the Recital Hall.

Tickets are $15 general/$10 students and seniors/free with Salem State student ID. Purchase at: or 978.542.6365.

Learn more about the Arts at Salem State University at

Posted by Kate on 09/03 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Five things to do in Salem this Labor Day Weekend

Here are five things to do in Salem this weekend, as we unofficially say goodbye to summer (I, for one, will be milking summer for all it's worth until its official end on September 21). 

Faberge Revealed at the Peabody Essex Museum

1.  Faberge Revealed at the Peabody Essex Museum is open until September 29, and then this opulent collection and the insight into Russia's royal family and the House of Faberge move on.  Don't wait until the exhibition's final days, when the galleries will be filled with other procrastinators.  Come to the PEM now, beat the rush, and enjoy the incredible collection that has been assembled for the exhibition.

Mahi Mahi Harbor Cruise

2. Take a harbor tour! Cruise around beautiful Salem Harbor on one of Mahi Mahi's narrated harbor tours, which cruise along the coastline of Salem, Marblehead, and Beverly at 10:30 AM on Saturday and Sunday. 

Salem Trolley on Essex Street

3. See Salem from a Trolley.  If you haven't taken a one-hour narrated Salem Trolley tour of Salem, you are missing out. Even residents who have lived here for years admit to learning something new on this informative, trivia-rich journey through Salem's history and neighborhoods.  From the Witch Trials through the Great Age of Sail to today (and everything in between), the Salem Trolley will help you decide how to spend the rest of your day in Salem.  It's the easiest way to see all of Salem in an hour, and your ticket is good all day for on-and-off service between 14 sites in Salem.

Marias Sweeet Somethings

4. Everyone Screams for Ice Cream. It's the end of summer, so you have to eat at least one serving of ice cream, preferably on atop a cone, melting down your hand and making a summertime mess.  We like getting ice cream at Maria's Sweet Somethings on Front Street (especially the peppermint patty frozen yogurt) and taking it over to the steps of Old Town Hall for some people watching while ice cream eating.

Salem Witch Trials Memorial

5. Learn a lesson. Salem is most known for the Salem Witch Trials, and the events of 1692 branded this the Witch City forever.  Visit one of museums, tours, or attractions to learn not only why the Witch Trials of 1692 happened, but why those events of so long ago are still relevant today.  Before Salem is swallowed by the pandemonium of October and Salem Haunted Happenings, take a moment to reflect on the lives lost, the intolerance shown, and the fear that ran through this 17th century community.  We like the Witch Hunt wall at the Salem Witch Museum, the live reenactment at the Witch Dungeon, and the audience participation of Cry Innocent.  Before leaving Salem, take a moment to pause at the Salem Wtich Trials Memorial to remember those whose pleas were not heard.

This list could go on and on. There are several new shops (not to mention the fabulous "old" ones) to explore, Salem's dining scene has never been hotter, and several of our inns and B&Bs have availability this weekend.  Find more information about all there is to do in Salem on, and come visit us!


Posted by Kate on 08/29 at 01:22 PM Permalink

A perfect weekend for the Antique & Classic Boat Show

This weekend Salem will welcome dozens of antique and classic boats to Brewer Hawthorne Cove Marina when the 31st Annual Antique & Classic Boat Show sails into town. 

Antique and Classic Boat Show

Click here for the the schedule of events for the weekend.  Events include Opening Ceremonies, live music, activities for children, exhibits and crafts market, live music, and more.  Head out to Derby Wharf on Sunday at 3:15 PM for the annual Parade of Boats. 

Antique and Classic Boat Show

For complete information, visit

Antique and Classic Boat Festival

Posted by Kate on 08/23 at 03:45 PM Permalink

The Grande Caribe at Salem Wharf

Salem was a port of call for the Blount Small Ship Adventures' Grande Caribe this week, and the vessel was the first to use the newly finished pier at Salem Wharf.  This was not Blount's first visit to Salem; the Grande Caribe called on Salem in 2008.  There were 64 passengers aboard, and they were on the final leg of a 12-day cruise that went from Rhode Island to New Brunswick.  You can find their complete itinerary here.

Blount Small Ship Cruise Ship Grande Caribe in Salem MA

About half of the passengers purchased Discover Salem Passports, which includes the House of the Seven Gables, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem Trolley, and Salem Witch Museum.  The others explored independently or stayed on board during the visit.

Blount Small Ship Cruises Grande Caribe at night

The Grande Caribe sailed for Plymouth this morning.  I hope they had a great visit in Salem, and wish them smooth sailing on the remainder of their trip!


Posted by Kate on 08/23 at 09:10 AM Permalink

Hank Phillippi Ryan to speak at the House of the Seven Gables

Hank Phillippi Ryan The House of the Seven Gables' lecture series, 7 Lectures at the 7 Gables, continues on Wednesday, August 21st at 7:00 pm with Hank Phillippi Ryan.  An Emmy-winning reporter, Ryan will share how she went from a reporter at Rolling Stone to the US senate and then to under-cover investigations for NBC to following her dreams and the wonders of mentoring. Hank will also be signing her book The Other Woman.

The lecture costs  $10 for members of the Gables, $15.00 for non-members.  Reserve your tickets by calling 978-744-0991.

Posted by Kate on 08/15 at 09:24 AM Permalink

Clearing the cobwebs from Pioneer Village

Elizabeth Peterson, director of the Witch House for the City of Salem, has taken over management of Pioneer Village at Forest River Park. She is going to provide us with periodic updates about Pioneer Village and the Witch House.

Pioneer Village Forest River Park Salem MA

My family and I celebrated this years 4th of July acquainting ourselves with a most remarkable local historic site: America's first living history museum, Salem's own Pioneer Village.  A collection of timber frame and thatched structures designed to replicate the appearance of Salem Town in the year 1630.  Created in 1930 to commemorate the landing of Winthrop's Fleet that brought over more than 700 colonists to the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

And an amazing day it was.  As besmirched with spiders, webs, unidentifiable bug bits and woodchuck lairs, chaos it may have been.  To tidy these cottages, clear the mantles, create vignettes and settings with items that would, hopefully, tell the story of these lives lived in early Salem.  A woolen blanket, a hand stitched cloth doll set in a cradle in the the first cottage where we share insight into the lives of colonial women.  Native land deeds, evidence of beads and trinkets sold for an as yet inestimable alteration to the lives already established in this land in another.  Sharp iron carders, spinning wheels, hornbooks and whirligigs to help understand the apprehensive, responsibility-laden lives of early Salem children, which will be staged in the third cottage in from the sea. 

After the work was complete, we looked up to watch the fireworks from the waterside gate and I felt so grateful for this opportunity.  This is where this country in many ways gained the momentum to survive to see such a celebration of independence.  Winthrop's numbers landed, suffusing this colony with a population large enough to anchor and quite possibly ensure it's success. 

Salem 1630: Pioneer Village is located in Salem's Forest River Park. Tours are availabel on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays 12:30pm, 1:30pm, and 2:45pm. Tickets are purchased at the Witch House Gift Shop (310 1/2 Essex Street). 

- Elizabeth Peterson, Director, The Witch House and Pioneer Village

Posted by Guest on 08/14 at 08:44 AM Permalink

Vintage and antique vehicles on a vintage and antique street!

Phillips House Car Meet


Join Historic New England’s Phillips House and the North Shore Old Car Club for the Twelfth Annual Car Meet on historic Chestnut Street.  Members of the North Shore Old Car Club will display their vintage and antique vehicles; there will be special tours of the Phillips House and Carriage House, including a close-up look at the two Pierce-Arrows, Model A Ford, and five carriages on display in the collection. Special family activities and games will be set up in the backyard. Jazz music will be provided by the Trent Austin Duo. Light refreshments will be provided as well.

Returning for a third year, RFT Insurance of Lynnfield will be sponsoring two award categories for the meet. All visitors will be able to vote for a People’s Choice and there will be a Sponsor’s Choice Award. The awards ceremony will take place at 2:30 p.m.

The meet takes place on Sunday, August 11 from 12:00 Noon – 3:00 p.m. Admission is free. The car meet is open to all participants, though members of the North Shore Old Car Club will receive priority parking near the Phillips House.

For more information, please call 978-744-0440 or visit

* * *

Historic New England would like to thank the generous sponsors who have committed to this event. They include Auto Body Restorations of Salem, Bouchard and Sons, Naumkeag Used Auto Parts, Next Step Living, the Salem Witch Museum, and Spinale Automotive.


Posted by Kate on 08/10 at 08:00 AM Permalink

8th Annual Swim & Fin - Open Water Championship

Swim and Fin race in Salem MA

Swimmers of all ages and levels, from novice to experienced, are invited to participate in the 8th Annual Swim & Fin - Race for Salem Sound, an open water charity swim on Saturday, August 24 at Forest River Park in Salem. Race events are 500 meters, one mile and 5K. Races are sanctioned by USA Swimming and US Masters Swimming. The one mile and 5K races are championship races for both organizations.

Entry fees are $30 in advance, $35 for race day registration. Swimmers who register by August 11 will get a professionally designed event tee shirt. All swimmers will be treated to clam chowder and sandwiches provided by Finz Seafood Restaurant in Salem. It will be a festive event with music, raffles, a marine touch tank, and more. Admission to the park is free for this event. Bring the family!

Proceeds benefit Salem Sound Coastwatch, a non-profit environmental organization fighting pollution and working to make our coastal waters and marine habitats clean, safe and healthy.

Register online Mail in registration and detailed information is available at For questions, contact Salem Sound Coastwatch at 978-741-7900 or email

Find more information about Salem's swimming, bicycling and running races, visit the calendar on

Posted by Kate on 08/09 at 09:08 AM Permalink

Madison Avenue: Washington Street

This summer, guest blogger Madison Sheffer is sharing her excellent sense of style and flair for shopping. In this, Madison's fifth and final post about shopping and dining in Salem, she takes us to Washington Street. She has previously written about fashion and food along Essex Street, Front Street, Derby Street and Pickering Wharf

Sharing is Caring

With tourism as Salem’s premier industry, it is the kind of city that celebrates its rich history while emphasizing the unity of its current residents and their efforts toward a bright future. The concepts of sharing and togetherness are common threads amongst businesses in Salem and this general harmony is a unique way in which the city brings people together and encourages them to care for one another. Through my journey down Washington Street this week, I came across more than a few places that promote interaction and sharing as a better way to learn, shop, and dine.

Walking into Treasures Over Time, husband and wife duo Nes and Sivan Sergott will immediately greet and enlighten you with their knowledge of the vast collection of coins, gems, and minerals in their store. Share your old heirlooms with them and see them transformed into something new and customized for you. The couples’ expertise (Nes as a coin dealer and Sivan as a gemologist) makes the experience enjoyable even if you are just browsing, as they delightfully share with customers the history and value behind each piece in the store.

Treasures over Time (photos: Jared Charney)      

An even more interactive experience is Re-Find Women’s (there is a Re-Find Men’s on Essex Street), a boutique that sells both new and resale clothing, accessories, and even furniture. Re-Find is different from a typical consignment shop in that they give you cash or allow for a trade on the same day you bring in items, encouraging people to share their rarely used clothes with others in a retail environment and to become frequently returning customers. Re-Find invites others to take part and to make shopping more than just a transaction. The selection of new items is colorful, trendy, and perfectly priced for a small boutique but with the added bonus of re-sale items featuring well-known brands like J.Crew, Free People, and Ann Taylor.


Across the street from Re-Find Women’s is the most talked-about restaurant in Salem right now: Opus. The opening was highly anticipated, first for dinner, then for lunch, and now they are serving brunch as well. I compensated for my eagerness to get inside those bamboo windows by having lunch at Opus not once, but twice this week (thank you, Destination Salem). According to our waiter, the concept of Opus is based around sharing, and is reflected in the “To Share” section of the lunch menu and the “For 2 or More” column of the diner menu. At Opus you can have a drawn out, tapas-style meal of various sushi plates and eclectic sharable dishes as we did during the first visit, or choose from the sandwich or entrée selections for a larger dose of goodness. Either way, Opus invites diners to come in and relax and before you know it you’ve been there for two hours and sampled a decent portion of the menu. The sushi is fresh, inventive, well presented and great for sharing (pictured is the Opus Cali Roll and the Spicy Tuna Roll), and the BLTA (A for avocado) is fantastic and is accompanied by hand cut fries with sea salt, an arugula salad, and a slice of watermelon… all of the necessities of a healthy, well-balanced meal. The spherical “O” design is featured throughout the restaurant and mimicked in the Opus logo. The concept inspires flowing conversations and libations at a variety of seating including a round table for six with a Lazy Susan or the circular, glowing bar.


And what better way to end a day on Washington Street than at the Salem Screamery with multiple spoons and two scoops of a daring flavor like bourbon caramel pistachio brittle ice cream? This place has every flavor from vanilla to ginger to graham central station so order a few and have a taste test. Remember: sharing is caring!

Salem is a wonderful place that shares so much culture and history with its residents and visitors and all that the city asks in return is that you communicate your joy and experiences with each other.

Fun Fact: Opus has an “underground” lounge area downstairs that is open until midnight for those looking to relax and exchange stories over a cocktail.

Treasures Over Time - 139 Washington Street, Salem, MA 01970  ▪  Re-Find Women - 72 Washington Street

Opus - 87 Washington Street, Salem, MA 01970  ▪  Salem Screamery - 60 Washington Street, Salem, MA 01970

Posted by Kate on 08/07 at 03:01 PM Permalink

Salem Maritime Festival Images

The Salem Maritime Festival on Saturday was fantastic. Not too hot, not too cold, great entertainment, educational (and fun) activities.  A great afternoon on the Salem waterfront!

Here are a few of my pictures from the afternoon.  If you have pictures of your own, please share them with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! Make sure to tag us @destsalem or #destsalem or #SalemMA.



Pike Demonstration with the crew from the US Constitution


Sea Shanties with the New Bedford Harbor Sea Shanty Chorus


The Lewis Story visiting from Essex, MA


Posted by Kate on 08/05 at 03:26 PM Permalink

Come Celebrate Four Centuries of Salem’s Maritime Heritage!

Salem Maritime Festival Logo This weekend marks the 25th Annual Salem Maritime Festival, hosted by the Salem Maritime National Historic Site.  This is always an amazing event, chock-full of free family friendly entertainment and interactive programs.

Saturday, August 3rd, 2013, 12 - 4:00 PM - FREE
Music, demonstrations, exhibits, harbor cruises, crafts, and seaside kite flying will be available throughout the park and on Derby Wharf. 

Don't miss...

  • The Muck Walk, featuring "Life at Low Tide"
  • Free, 90-minute boat rides around Salem Harbor aboard Schooner Fame, a full-scale replica of a War of 1812 Privateer, Ardelle, a Gloucester Schooner, and Sea Shuttle's Endeavour, aboard which passengers will learn about the marine science of Salem Sound!  Harbor tour tickets are issued by lottery onsite during the festival. Please visit for details.
  • Live Music featuring the Ricardo Monzon Orchestra, Sharks Come Cruisin' and the New Bedford Harbor Sea Chanty Chorus.
  • Children's activies, including kite-making, radio-controlled boats, and a Children's Tent filled with fun crafts to do.
  • Tours of tall ship Friendship and cargo-loading demonstrations.
  • Junior Ranger activities.

For complete information, visit  The Salem Maritime Festival kicks off a week of Salem Heritage Days, dozens of events celebrating Salem and its rich history.

Posted by Kate on 08/01 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Madison Avenue: Essex Street

This summer, guest blogger Madison Sheffer is sharing her excellent sense of style and flair for shopping.  Today, her weekly blog, Madison Avenue in Salem, takes us to Essex Street. She has previously written about fashion and food along Front Street, Derby Street and Pickering Wharf.

Follow the Cobblestone Road

Essex Street is primarily known as the Pedestrian Walkway, a brick and cobblestone path lined with stores that intertwine classic tourist destinations with unique boutiques, specialty stores, and fantastic restaurants. If you are looking for a special Salem shopping and dining experience, this is the street you need to explore. One such establishment is Pamplemousse, a European-inspired boutique specializing in fine wines, specialty gourmet food, and kitchen and bath accessories. Pamplemousse items are great for a picnic, a hostess gift, or a drink on Saturdays at their wine tastings from 2-4pm.


If you want to look further than the kitchen, the Peabody Essex Museum gift shop is your next stop. The merchandise sold at the Museum Shop is, in a word, distinctive. As an intern in the marketing department at the PEM this summer, I am a frequent flier in the shop and constantly browse the new collections which collaborate with the current exhibitions. The PEM shop is a work of art itself as the shop ladies travel the world to obtain the most fabulous jewelry, apparel, hats, home décor items, menswear, and more that are a league above the rest.

Peabody Essex Museum Shop

For a complete afternoon on Essex Street, go next door to the Garden Restaurant at the PEM, a hidden gem, reminiscent of a real life Secret Garden as many pass by its gates without wandering in for tea and a sandwich. Although only open Wednesday through Sunday 11:30am to 2:30pm, the Hawthorne Hotel has created the perfect light lunch menu for the shady spot featuring items like the poached salmon niçoise salad and grilled Portobello mushroom entrée. The idyllic atmosphere outdoors at the Garden Restaurant makes it a unique al fresco lunch spot that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Garden Restaurant at the PEM

If you are looking for a burger-in-a-booth type of meal, Rockefellas on the corner of Essex and Washington Streets is where you should start. Rockefellas offers a fantastic lunch and dinner menu as well as outdoor seating and turns into a popular night-out spot with live entertainment in the evenings. With everything from seared ahi tuna to braised short ribs to a make-your-own burger option, the menu has something for everyone, even offering vegetarian and gluten-free dishes.


The Pedestrian Walkway has everything you need for a great afternoon in Salem and come October, I wouldn’t be surprised if I saw Dorothy and the Tin Man skipping down the bricks, too.

Fun Fact: Paid admission to the Peabody Essex Museum is not required to shop or dine within but don’t miss out on the enriching culture and art housed within the nation’s oldest continuously operating museum.

Another Fun Fact: The Garden Restaurant will be open on Tuesdays starting August 6th through the duration of Fabergé Revealed (September 29).


Pamplemousse- 185 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ PEM Shop- 161 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970 

The Garden Restaurant- 161 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Rockefellas- 231 Essex Street, Salem, MA 01970

Posted by Guest on 07/31 at 11:08 AM Permalink

Elephant on Board

The Elephant

I suppose every town has unique and quirky history, but Salem sure seems to have more than its fair share.  Salemites have been involved in so many aspects of American history, including legal process, navigation, trade, literature, education, and abolition.  And then there are the quirky stories that catch our attention - streakers, souvenir spoons, lead pencils, American flags, and elephants. 

It is said that the first elephant in America came through Salem in 1796.  She was purchased in Calcutta by Captain Jacob Crowninshield, who was a member of the hugely successful Crowninshield & Sons of Salem shipping company. The elephant came to America aboard the ship, America.  She was 2 years old and they called her Old Bet. Nathaniel Hawthorne's father, Nathaniel Hathorne, was apparently an officer on board, and he is credited with writing, "Elephant on Board" in the ship log.

As the story goes, the crew of the America realized quickly after setting sail with this elephant that she was drinking all of the water on board. They quickly switched her diet to beer, and when she arrived stateside she was, well, drunk.  That did not diminish Old Bet's popularity, though. She was eventually sold to Bailey (of Barnum & Bailey) and taken on tour with the circus. She was exhibited in Salem, Beverly, Marblehead, Boston, and New York. 

The promotional poster from Boston has a few gems in its copy: "He eats 130 weight a day, and drinks all kinds of spiritous liquors; some days he has drank 30 bottles of porter, drawing the corks with his trunk," and "The elephant having destroyed many papers of consequence, it is recommended to visitors not to come near him with such papers." 

Admission to see the elephant cost one quarter of a dollar (children, nine pence). 

You can purchase a copy of the Boston Poster at the House of the Seven Gables.  It is a great piece of the whimsical side of Salem history. 

Posted by Kate on 07/29 at 01:59 PM Permalink

The hidden gem that is Glassworks Studio at Salem State

Salem State University has four glass artists in residence this summer, and for the past three weeks they have held glass-blowing and hot-sculpting demonstrations at the Glassworks Studio in the Enterprise Center.  There is a final demonstration on Monday, July 29, and if you can add it to your schedule, it is a unique experience.

Hot glass at glassworks studio demonstration

When I think of glass-blowing, I remember a little shop on Main Street on Nantucket that had a glassblower who worked in the window, making clear glass animals like unicorns and elephants. He worked on what I now know was a small scale, stocking the shop shelves with souvenirs for families like mine. 

My preconceived notions were shattered.  This is more on the scope and scale of Chihuly, although I did not make that connection until I was sitting in the gallery watching Danny Wright create one of his sculptures in glass.  The pieces of the sculpture were created prior to the demonstration, so we watched as the man wearing a yellow jogging suite was assembled, piece by piece, through heat and fire and patience.   

Glass artist Danny White shows the audience the head - one of the parts that would be assembled during the demonstration.

Artist Dawson Kellog narrated the demonstration, and he could not express enough the fragility of the situation.  One wrong move, and the whole sculpture could shatter.  Working with glass is clearly a dangerous art that takes patience, and a fondness for heat in the workplace.

Artist Danny White prepares the shoulder for its arm.

While Danny was the featured artist this week, he had a team supporting him. Artists took turns keeping the sculpture's feet to the fire (literally), walking it back and forth to the furnace, and getting the pre-heated body parts out of ovens to be affixed to the sculpture. 

The Glassworks team prepares to separate the sculpture from its base.

If you are a fan of glass or anything artistic, there is one more demonstration night at Glassworks on Monday, July 29. The demonstration begins at 6:00 PM, but seats fill up, so I recommend getting there by 5:45. The studio is in the Enterprise Center at Salem State, about a 10-minute drive from downtown Salem. Visit for more information.

Also worth noting is the Glassworks gift shop, which has gifts both practical and whimsical made of glass. This week I'm calling it the perfect spot for a hostess gift, but gifts of glass would work for any occasion.  

Posted by Kate on 07/27 at 01:58 PM Permalink

“Goodnight, Captain White” - A Comic Whodunit

The cast of

This weekend the creators of Cry Innocent will reveal their newest production, Goodnight, Captain White on the stage at the Griffen Theatre in Salem.  This comic whodunit presents the legendary story of the 1830 murder of Salem Sea Captain White like we've never seen it before. 

Visitors may be familiar with the story because it is featured in most trolley and walking tours of Salem. Captain Joseph White, a rich, elderly, retired shipmaster, was murdered while sleeping in his Essex Street home. The murderers were local, the prosecuting attorney famous.  Senator Daniel Webster, hired by the White family to prosecute for the Commonwealth, described the case thus: “It has hardly a precedent anywhere; certainly none in our New England history. It was a cool, calculating, moneymaking murder. It was all "hire and salary, not revenge.”

Playwright Mark Stevick, who also wrote Cry Innocent, first heard about the murder in the 1980s while on a private tour of the Gardner Pingree House—Joseph’s White home when the murder occurred. Years later, after launching Cry Innocent, he remembered the story. “We had discovered through Cry Innocent in those early years that Salem was a great place to make theatre from history,” Stevick says. “I wanted to write something for the cast that could be the next challenge--using all the interactive and improv skills they were honing through Cry Innocent. This was the perfect event.”

Good Night, Captain White provides an often-hilarious look at the ghastly crime, the missing will, and a plethora of macaroons.  The comedy bridges between 1830 and 2013, is rich with inuendo, and relies on a talented cast for improv and audience interaction.  It is, in short, a night of good fun (with a blunt object and a sharp instrument) and original telling of a great story.

Goodnight, Captain White will play Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays July 26th-August 3rd at The Griffen Theatre, 7 Lynde Street, Salem. For tickets and information visit  You can also find updates and photos from the show on Facebook.

Posted by Kate on 07/25 at 01:59 PM Permalink

Madison Avenue: Front Street

This summer, guest blogger Madison Sheffer is sharing her excellent sense of style and flair for shopping.  Today, her weekly blog, Madison Avenue in Salem, takes us to Front Street. She has previously written about Derby Street and Pickering Wharf.

What is sophistication, anyway?

After spending a semester abroad in Florence and now having my own apartment, I feel like I’ve officially reached adulthood. Twenty-one years young and I find myself shopping for home furnishings and cocktail dresses instead of nail polish and plastic wine glasses (just kidding, I still do that). But Front Street in Salem has just right balance of sophistication and fun for any person who meanders down its sunny sidewalk. J.Mode Boutique is a fabulous, small, high-end shop for the women who appreciate the value of an LBD and a good cashmere sweater. J.Mode features primarily designers like Nicole Miller, Joe’s jeans, Johnny Was, Tracey Reese, and Autumn Cashmere whose collections I love to try on and pretend I can afford, but it’s still one of those places I cannot seriously shop without my mother.

J Mode on Front Street  

Leaving J.Mode’s tempting sidewalk sale items behind, I find something better suited for me at Maria’s Sweet Somethings: chocolate. And thirty-two flavors of ice cream according to the cheerful guy behind the counter. Who wouldn’t be cheerful surrounded by sugar all day? The sweet smelling, air-conditioned store never fails to make me believe that dark chocolate and milk butter cream are more important than lunch, and with a perfect location next to Derby Square, Maria’s is the best place to treat yourself on a hot day. There’s no shame in people watching with one of the thirty-two flavors dribbling down your chin.

Maria's Sweet Somethings and Roost         

What’s that, you need a napkin? How about a cheese platter and spreading knives too? Roost & Company is a unique “urban country design” store on Front Street that will make you re-think your dinner parties and your bubble bath routine. You can find everything from vintage magnets that are disturbingly on point with their witty sayings to French presses to gluten-free cookbooks that make great gifts or additions to your home.

Further down on the corner of Washington and Front Streets is the Adriatic Restaurant & Bar, a fantastic fine-dining experience for those interested in the best wine list you’ll ever see and delicious brick oven pizza. Everything about Adriatic is impressive from the wait staff to the bar to the fresh seafood dishes. After eating my way through Europe last fall, I have to say the Arugula pizza with prosciutto and mozzarella is up there on my list of life-changing pizzas (second to Gusto Pizza in Piazza di Santo Spirito in Florence). The Adriatic is a top spot in Salem for lunch or dinner and it literally ends Front Street with an air of sophistication and relaxation.

Roost and Adriatic Restaurant on Front Street

Fun Fact: The Adriatic just put a burger on their menu like no other! You’ll have to go to find out what’s in it!


J.Mode Boutique - 17 Front Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Roost & Company - 40 Front Street, Salem, MA 01970

Maria’s Sweet Somethings - 26 Front Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Adriatic Restaurant & Bar - 155 Washington Street, Salem, MA 01970

Posted by Kate on 07/24 at 01:54 PM Permalink

A Salem Ferry Adventure

Salem Ferry

Riding the Salem Ferry by Boston Harbor Cruises is an adventure in either direction.  Use the Ferry, which transports you from Boston's Long Wharf to Salem in under one hour, to come to Salem and you are within walking distance of The House of the Seven Gables, Salem Maritime National Historic Site, and shopping and dining at Pickering Wharf.  If walking isn't your cup of tea (or the weather is less than perfect), fret not because the Salem Trolley meets each ferry with a shuttle to the Visitor Center in the heart of downtown Salem (which is just over a half-mile walk).

Ride the Ferry from Salem to Boston, and an excellent adventure awaits at the newly renovated New England Aquarium, and Faneuil Hall is just across the Greenway.  Also a short walk away are the restaurants of the North End to the North, and the restaurants of the recently developed Fan Pier to the south.  

Extend your Salem adventure by a day and spend it in Boston, or use Boston as your leaping off point to visit Salem. Either way, the Salem Ferry is the best way to travel between these two historic cities.

Posted by Kate on 07/22 at 03:49 PM Permalink

Madison Avenue: Wharf Street

This summer, guest blogger Madison Sheffer is sharing her excellent sense of style and flair for shopping.  Today, her weekly blog, Madison Avenue in Salem, takes us to Pickering Wharf. You can see Madison's post about Derby Street here.

La Dolce Vita on the Wharf

Wharf Street is Salem’s best ocean-side shopping and dining location. Extraordinary restaurants, charming shops, and a fabulous view of the water… I believe that’s called hitting the trifecta. Thirsty? Enjoy La Dolce Vita, a refreshing combination of Tanqueray gin, grapefruit, lime and basil, one of many new exotic summer cocktails at 62 Restaurant & Wine Bar.  The combination of its small plates menu and colorful summer beverages makes 62 a great place for an after-work drink, although with contemporary versions of traditional Italian favorites featuring fresh homemade pasta, you might want to stay for dinner.

Dining on Pickering Wharf: Finz, 62

Finz Seafood and Grill offers al fresco dining for lunch and dinner overlooking the marina along with a menu dominated by New England favorites like North Atlantic haddock with lump crab meat, steamed lobsters, and an extensive raw bar. But I have to say, the bacon-crusted Filet Mignon, with its crispy onion rings and blue cheese drizzle, managed to capture my carnivorous heart. Finz also has a fabulous copper-topped bar and fire-side lounge for those who prefer to eat indoors and admire the view through floor-to-ceiling glass windows.

But before sitting down to a cocktail and a plate of oysters, why not work up an appetite browsing the shops along the Wharf? Directly across the way from Finz is Flirt, a combined boutique and consignment shop, chock full of both new and gently used essentials for summer and fall. There are sun dresses, sandals, a case full of funky sunglasses for those of us stuck in our summer daydream and vintage leather skirts with bright, printed blouses for the bold women of fall.

Shopping on Pickering Wharf: Every Occassion and Flirt

Around the corner, Every Occasion Boutique at 96 Wharf Street won Northshore Magazine’s Best of the North Shore last year for best accessories, and for good reason. The walls are lined by delicate lace and chiffon dresses in hot pink, sapphire, and baby blue but I spend most of my time searching the colorful sea of jewelry for the perfect accoutrement. You can find stud earrings with a trendy, nautical influence for as little as $10 or splurge on a pastel statement necklace for around $25.

Leaving the Wharf empty handed and hungry is really very hard to do.

Fun Fact: check each location’s Facebook for updated dinner specials and info on newly arrived products and sales!

Every Occasion Boutique- 96 Wharf Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Flirt- 63 Wharf Street, Salem, MA 01970

62 Restaurant & Wine Bar- 62 Wharf Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Finz Seafood and Grill- 76 Wharf Street, Salem, MA 01970

Posted by Guest on 07/17 at 10:49 AM Permalink

Overnight British Encampment at Salem

Reenactors Assembled on Derby Wharf. NPS Photo.

Salem Maritime National Historic Site and the Center for 18th Century Life at Minute Man National Historical Park are hosting an overnight British encampment at Salem Maritime on July 20 and 21, 2013 from 10AM to 4PM. The National Park Service has invited some of the best re-enactors in Massachusetts to portray General Gage, his staff, his troops, and the legislators and civilians that he met in Massachusetts in 1774.  The two-day event is free and open to the public.

The soldiers will be encamped on Derby Wharf throughout the weekend and will demonstrate 18th century musket drill, including firing their weapons. Cooking demonstrations, a surgeon’s tent, a court martial and other demonstrations will show visitors how British regulars lived during the occupation of Massachusetts.  Families can take part in activities like learning how to drill with wooden muskets.  A special Junior Ranger program will be available, and the first seventy-five kids to take part will get “the King’s shilling,” the traditional signing bonus for British soldiers in the 18th century.

In addition to the soldiers, some of the 18th century residents of Salem and the legislators who came to town for the sessions will be in attendance. John Adams and others will debate the issues of the day, and encourage visitors to sign petitions for or against the move of the legislature to Salem!

In June of 1774, General Thomas Gage, the newly-appointed Governor of Massachusetts, arrived in Boston with some controversial orders in his pocket: move the Capitol of Massachusetts to Salem, where calmer heads would hopefully prevail after several years of upheaval in Boston. He was wrong. During that summer, the Massachusetts legislature defied him, sent representatives to the first Continental Congress, and rejected his authority as Governor, setting in motion the events that culminated in the Battle of Lexington and Concord.

For more information, and a schedule, visit, or call 978-740-1691.

Posted by Kate on 07/16 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Who’s your hero?

The Salem Award Foundation asks, Who's your hero?

If you received the Salem Award Foundation’s monthly blast for July,* you saw that this month includes Malala Day (July 12th) honoring the young Pakistani girl who was shot in the head for daring to advocate for education for girls, as well as Nelson Mandela Day (July 18th). Their efforts are well known, but many others are just as committed and working in their own way on behalf of others. 

Twenty-one of them have been recipients of the Salem Award, including Morris Dees, Leonard Zakim, Fahima Vorgetts and this year’s winners, Thomas Doyle and Horace Seldon. You may or may not recognize these names. There are countless people doing important, but often unheralded work in the many areas that fall under the human rights and social justice umbrella.

Now, it’s time to ask who is your hero?  Whom do you know (or know of) who deserves the Salem Award? The SAF welcomes nominations from anyone.  Who is a good candidate? Any person or organization whose work is in keeping with our mission:

To keep alive the lessons of the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 and to make known and honor the heroic work of those who speak out and take action to alleviate discrimination, promote tolerance, and achieve justice for contemporary victims of social injustice.

They may be working here on the North Shore, for migrant workers in Florida, like 2008 recipient the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, or in the fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa, like Paula Donovan, who received the Salem Award in 2005. The deadline for nominations is September 1. The application and more information can be found at

Shelby Hypes for
The Salem Award Foundation

*If you didn’t receive our monthly email, you can sign up here.

Posted by Guest on 07/15 at 09:36 AM Permalink

Music, Dance, Art Making, Cocktails, Conversation… it’s all at PEM/PM

PEM PM July 2013

On Thursday, July 18, join the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) for a celebration of Midsummer Night with cocktails, conversation and Russian music and dance performances by the Barynya Dance Ensemble of New York City. Take advantage of the opportunity to visit the new exhibition Fabergé Revealed for free and see the treasures created for the royal Russian family.

The ancient and mystical Russian Midsummer Night (or Ivan's Day) is known as one of the most expressive Russian folk and pagan holidays. Midsummer rites are often connected to water, with girls floating flower garlands in rivers to tell their fortune.  Come celebrate by painting wooden eggs based on designs that have existed in folk culture for centuries. Sample pastries -- like those served by the Russian Imperial family -- from Boston-based cafe Athan’s Bakery. Peruse the PEM Shop, which has Fabergé -inspired jewelry and gifts.

Established in 1991,  Barynya Dance Ensemble presents Russian, Cossack and Jewish traditional dancing and music on instruments including the balalaika, bayan, Gypsy guitars and violin. Barynya has been invited to perform at some of the most prestigious cultural venues in the U.S., including Carnegie Hall, the Smithsonian, the United Nations and the Russian Embassy in Washington, D.C.

The name Fabergé is synonymous with refined craftsmanship, jeweled luxury and the Russian imperial family. PEM’s headlining summer exhibition, Fabergé Revealed, features more than 230 singular treasures created by the House of Fabergé in the late 19th and early 20th centuries including enameled clocks, gold cigarette cases, hardstone carvings, ruby encrusted brooches and four signature imperial eggs made for Nicholas II and the Romanov family.  Explore ideas of luxury, innovation and entrepreneurship, while gaining insight into Peter Carl Fabergé's life, business and legacy.

  • Members and Salem residents FREE
  • Nonmembers $10
  • No reservations required
  • Cash bar


Posted by Kate on 07/12 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Tales from the Chauffer

Step back into a more genteel time of the early 1900s with local historian, Merrill Kohlhofer, when he portrays the Phillips family chauffeur, Patrick O’Hara, and share the daily chores, drives, and special travels through the years. This special tour of the carriage house and museum is part of Historic New England’s “Everybody’s History” initiative which is sharing stories about everyday living in the organization’s historic houses.

Tales from the Chauffeur will take place on Thursday, July 18, 2013 from 6:30-8:30 and will include a special talk and tour of the carriage house. The cost is $15.00. A $5.00 discount is available to members of Historic New England and the North Shore Old Car Club. Please call 978-744-0440 or visit to make a reservation. Space is limited for this event.

Tales of the Chauffer. Image courtesy Historic New England

About "Everybody's History:" In 2013, visitors are invited to join Historic New England for a series of walking tours, lectures, and special museum tours that will focus on the role of the variety of people who impacted everyday life at our historic properties.

About Historic New England: Historic New England is the oldest, largest, and most comprehensive regional heritage organization in the nation. We bring history to life while preserving the past for everyone interested in exploring the authentic New England experience from the seventeenth century to today. Historic New England owns and operates thirty-six historic homes and landscapes spanning five states. The organization shares the region's history through vast collections, publications, public programs, museum properties, archives, and family stories that document more than 400 years of life in New England. For more information visit

Posted by Kate on 07/11 at 08:43 AM Permalink

Madison Avenue: Derby Street

We are pleased to introduce a new guest blogger for the summer.  Madison Sheffer is going to share with us her excellent sense of style and flair for shopping.  Her weekly blog, Madison Avenue in Salem, will appear each Wednesday this summer. Her first installment takes us shopping on Derby Street.

 MADISON AVENUE: Girls Just Want to Have Fun (and a Margarita)

Derby Street- the one-stop-shop for all things girly in Salem. The neighborly duo of Rouge Cosmetics and Two Girls Shop gives women the chance to pamper themselves even if they only have a few hours to spare. Sit down in one of the magical plush pink chairs in Rouge and let the fabulous staff do what they do best or simply browse among the tantalizing tester samples dabbing a little color here and there to brighten your face and your day. I can never go into Rouge and not buy something since they have amazing sales on products ranging from Stila tinted lip balms (which I snagged for $5) to NARS bronzer sticks and bareMinerals blush.

Rouge exterior Rouge Interior   

Directly next door is Two Girls Shop, an eclectic boutique that offers an affordable selection of rustic housewares, bright statement necklaces, gauzy summer scarves, and an astonishing collection of cowboy boots for sale in the back.

Two Girls Two Girls boots   

Derby Street is the ideal setting for a quick pick-me-up during lunch or for an afternoon with the girls. Stroll down to Scratch Kitchen at 245 Derby Street for lunch and allow the vegetable and goat cheese Panini or a cup of chowder with homemade SK bacon to sate your appetite after all that shopping. Scratch Kitchen focuses on regional, farm fresh ingredients and what isn’t grown locally is made in-house, so let’s just call it an afternoon of supporting the local economy…

And if you’re wandering the area a little closer to five o’clock, head up Lafayette Street to Red Lulu Cocina & Tequila Bar. The gothic-romantic atmosphere speaks for itself but you won’t do much talking with the slow cooked brisket tacos and a Broken Heart margarita in front of you. Fun Fact: ask for the check and enjoy the sweetest surprise you’ll ever receive.

Rouge Cosmetics- 322 Derby Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Two Girls Shop- 320 Derby Street, Salem, MA 01970

Scratch Kitchen- 245 Derby Street, Salem, MA 01970 ▪ Red Lulu Cocina & Tequila Bar- 94 Lafayette Street, Salem, MA 01970

Posted by Guest on 07/10 at 12:42 PM Permalink

“Off the Menu” at 62

Off the Menu at 62 Restaurant and Wine Bar

Join Chef Tony Bettencourt on Sunday, July 14th, 2013 at 6:00PM and get a peek behind the closed kitchen doors of “62″ during their new ”Off the Menu” cooking demonstration and dinner!  Chef Bettencourt will prepare and demonstrate a 3-course meal featuring:

Seared Sea Scallops with spicy pickled grapefruit, avocado & crispy prosciutto.

Raviolo al’Uovo stuffed with ricotta, a poached egg, wild mushrooms, black truffle and pancetta

62′s Toffee Pudding

Get the recipes and techniques to make these dishes at home while you dine on an amazing  3-course dinner! These dinners make a great date night and always sell out, so please call to reserve your seat soon! Tickets are available for $45.00 per person, with an optional wine pairing for an additional $20.00. Tax and gratuity not included. Reservations are can be done by calling 62 at (978) 744-0062.

Posted by Kate on 07/07 at 08:17 AM Permalink

Hear their stories, walk their land

1692 Combo Ticket There's a new combination ticket in town, and it will broaden your experience of the Salem Witch Trials beyond the Salem borders.  Many know that the Witch Trials rocked the entire region in 1692, and that Salem was then divided into Salem Town (now Salem) and Salem Village (now Danvers).  This new combination ticket will take you to the Salem Witch Museum and Witch House in Salem, and to the Rebecca Nurse Homestead in Danvers.

The Witch House is the only structure still standing in Salem that has direct ties to the Witch Trials of 1692.  There are several structures in Danvers still standing, including the Rebecca Nurse Homestead. The Homestead includes the house, property, a small family graveyard, and a replica meeting house.  Visit for a list of other sites in Salem and Danvers that have ties to the Witch Trials of 1692.

The 1692 Pass also includes discounts for the Tavern at the Hawthorne Hotel, Ye Olde Pepper Candie Company, and Goodies Ice Cream (Danvers).

Click here to learn more and buy tickets online.

Posted by Kate on 07/06 at 08:34 AM Permalink

Glass Blowing Demonstrations

Salem State University Glassblowing Studio at the Enterprise Center will offer glassblowing demonstrations on Monday evenings in July.

Vessel Cornucopia by Dawson Kellogg

HOT! HOT! HOT! That is how the four innovative glass artists who will be working in Salem State's Glassworks Studio this month are being described.

Danny White, Dawson Kellogg, Chris Watts, and Tyler Kimball are the first artists to be selected for The Rosenberg Institute for Passionate and Emerging Artists. Through the generous support of Ira and Judy Rosenberg the four artists will be in residence for the month of July, living on campus and creating new work in the University's state of the art glassblowing studio.

The residency provides an opportunity for the artists to fully explore an idea or a series of ideas in glass, free from economic constraints.

Glassblowing is a unique spectator event with equal amounts artistry and suspense. The public will have an opportunity to watch the artists at work in a series of free demonstrations. These will be held Monday evenings, July 8, 15, 22 and 29 at 6 pm. The July 29 event will begin with an artists' reception at 5:30 pm.

The Glassworks Studio is located in the Enterprise Center at 121 Loring Ave., Suite 750. For additional information visit: or call 978.542.7890.

Posted by Kate on 07/05 at 10:10 AM Permalink

Free concert performance by students from the Leys School

The Leys School

The Leys School of England is sending us the gift of music for the days following the 4th of July.  A touring group of 44 students with 5 chaperones comprise a Choir of 25 voices, a Jazz ensemble of 15, a Wind Orchestra of 35 and a String Orchestra of 15 will perform on Sunday, July 7th, 6:00 PM at Salem Old Town Hall.  Admission is free.

They will also be participating in the church service on that Sunday morning at Wesley United Methodist Church in Salem.

The Leys School is one of England’s premier independent Co-Educational Boarding Schools in the university city of Cambridge. Founded in 1875 by the Methodist Conference, it has more than 550 students (ages 11-18).  They have a unique music program, with over 250 weekly instrumental and vocal lessons taught by a team of 25 visiting musicians, many of whom play professionally.

They will be arriving in Salem after giving a series of concerts in New York and Boston.  These concerts include a performance on the flight deck of the Intrepid Museum and Boylston Plaza at the Prudential Center.

Posted by Kate on 07/03 at 08:24 AM Permalink

Seventeenth Century Saturdays at Historic New England’s Gedney House

Historic New England's Gedney House

Visit Gedney House during Seventeenth Century Saturdays and see why it is not your typical historic house. View original post-and-beam timbers, brick nogging, and early decorative finishes in Salem’s second oldest historic house.

The next Seventeenth Century Saturdays will take place on Saturday, July 6. Tours are $5.00 for adults and  free for Historic New England members and Salem residents. The museum will be open from 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. with tours available on the hour. Space on tours is limited due to the structure of the house.

Please call 978-744-0440 or visit for more information. The next Seventeenth Century Saturdays will be taking place on August 3.

Posted by Kate on 07/02 at 08:12 AM Permalink

Salem Celebrates the Fourth

The Hillyer Festival Orchestra performs on July 4, 2012

Mayor Kimberley Driscoll is pleased to announce that there will be a full afternoon and evening of exciting entertainment at the Salem Maritime National Historic Site on Derby Wharf on Thursday, July 4th. This family-friendly celebration has proven to be one of Salem's signature events, drawing record breaking crowds year after year. 

"Last year Salem was recognized by American Profile, a national publication, as one of the top ten best places in America to celebrate the 4th and this year will be no different,” Mayor Driscoll stated. “Celebrating July 4th in Salem is as good as it gets. It's not just an amazing fireworks display, we have live entertainment from beginning to end, so come early and stay late."

Salem's residential and business community has come together to ensure that this first-class event continues, even in this difficult financial climate. Mayor Driscoll commented, "I am truly grateful that Salem's residents and businesses continue to generously support this annual celebration,” Mayor Driscoll commented. “I’d like to express a special thank you to Footprint Power - Salem Harbor Station and to Salem Five, along with Aggregate Industries, Tache Real Estate, Market Basket, Eastern Bank, KV Associates, and Tavern in the Square. Without their generosity and our other many sponsors, this event would not be possible."

Live entertainment on the Main Stage begins at 4:00 p.m. with the band Britannica and continues at 5:30 p.m. with Julie Dougherty and Friends. Both Salem-based bands are local favorites and are a great way to put everyone in the holiday spirit.

Free children's activities begin at 4:00 p.m. with the opening of the Kids' Space, where young ones can play games, do crafts, and get their face painted, all thanks to the generosity of the Gathering, the MeetingHouse Church, the Salem Beautification Committee, and the Salem YMCA. Food tents open at 4:00 p.m., with plenty of hot dogs, french fries, fried dough, kettle corn, and other fair favorites.

Opening Ceremonies begin at 7:15 p.m. when Mayor Driscoll, Congressman John Tierney, and National Park Superintendent Michael Quijano-West – accompanied by the Salem Veterans Color Guard and Salem Boy Scout troops – will parade down the wharf to welcome the crowd.  Salem High School students Lydia Grasberger and Samantha Dupuis will lead the crowd in the singing of the National Anthem.  This year the venue, the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, celebrates its 75th Anniversary as the first historic site established by the National Park Service in 1938. 

Following the Opening Ceremonies there will be a two-hour 'POPS' concert performed by the 40-piece Hillyer Festival Orchestra (HFO). The HFO has become a widely acclaimed 'POPS' orchestra in the greater Boston area. This year's featured soloist, Rebecca Robbins, is currently performing on Broadway in Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of The Opera at the Majestic Theatre. Dr. Dirk Hillyer, the orchestra's conductor, has selected songs from Rags and Candide to showcase Ms. Robbins lyric soprano voice.

Even intermission is jammed packed with live entertainment, with performers from the Marblehead Little Theatre's production of Spamalot taking to the Main Stage.

At 9:15 p.m, Salem concludes its Independence Day celebration with a fireworks extravaganza, accompanied by the Hillyer Festival Orchestra playing the 1812 Overture and other patriotic music throughout the entire fireworks display.

Part of the allure of this celebration is its setting. The first National Historic Site in the National Park System, Salem Maritime National Historic Site consists of nine acres of waterfront land and houses a dozen historic structures. These include the Custom House, where famed author Nathaniel Hawthorne worked, and Derby Wharf, which was used by America's first millionaire Salem merchant Elias Hasket Derby. Historic Salem Harbor, with hundreds of boats moored and the replica of a 1700's sailing vessel, the Friendship, as a backdrop, Independence Day in Salem is filled with the history that helped make American the free nation it is today.

Also on July 4th, join Mayor Driscoll on Salem Common at 9:00 a.m. for the reading of the Declaration of Independence. The special program begins with the Star Spangled Banner, sung by Salem High School's award-winning a cappella group “Witch Pitch?”. This year the Declaration of Independence will be recited by Dann Anthony Maurno. Dann is a Salem resident and actor who has appeared onstage in a variety of area venues, including the Salem Theatre Company. An author, his short story "Something Real Fine" won a Salem Literary Festival award for best fiction. Musical selections will be performed by Robert Kendall on keyboard and local singer Maureen Dalton ends the program with America the Beautiful.

July 4th is the perfect day to spend in historic Salem, Massachusetts. Start off bright and early at Salem Common for the reading of the Declaration of Independence, spend the rest of the morning and early afternoon visiting the City’s numerous historic sites and attractions, dine at one of dozens of remarkable restaurants, and end your day at historic Derby Wharf for one of the most spectacular live concerts and fireworks extravaganzas anywhere in Massachusetts.

For more information check or call Salem City Hall at 978-745-9595, ext. 5676.

For information regarding our mobility impaired/wheelchair seating section, please call 978-745-9595, ext. 5676.

Posted by Kate on 07/01 at 11:01 AM Permalink

Celebrate July Fourth on Derby Wharf!

Salem July 4th Poster

Join us for the Fourteenth Annual Salem July Fourth Celebration on Derby Wharf at the Salem Maritime National Historic Site.  This event, which has become known as the "Esplanade North" is a patriotic celebration of Independence Day in true Salem style. 

The evening begins with kids' activities and crafts in the Kid Space at 4:00 PM, along with two beloved local bands, Julie Dougherty and Britannica, which open the main stage at 4:00 PM. The main event gets under way at 7:00 PM, when the Hillyer Festival Orchestra celebrates America through a musical presentation that includes sing-alongs, dance-tunes, and patriotic favorites.  It all culminates with fireworks over Salem harbor and the Tall Ship Friendship of Salem.

Pack a picnic or find snacks and treats at the food stands on site for the evening, and join us for a grand celebration of America's Independence.


Posted by Kate on 06/27 at 08:53 AM Permalink

Faberge at the PEM

 Imperial Red Cross Easter Egg with Portraits  1915. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond. Bequest of Lillian Thomas Pratt. Photo by Katherine Wetzel. © Virginia Museum of Fine ArtsFaberge: Revealed opens on June 22 at the Peabody Essex Museum. The exhibition features 230 precious works of art -- ruby-encrusted brooches, diamond-studded pendants and intricate Easter eggs -- that symbolize the height of luxury and the downfall of the Russian royal family.

The PEM is holding a weekend festival celebrating the opening of the exhibit. There will be gallery talks, artist demonstrations and special programs dedicated to the art and work of Faberge.  Click here to learn more.

The exhibition is remarkable, and (to put it simply) it is much more than eggs. The design of the exhibit will transport you from Salem to the House of Faberge in St. Petersburg, and then on to the House of Faberge in Moscow - each showroom having its own specialty and talents - and you will end in the Romanov Palace with a glimpse of how Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra lived before the fall of the Romanov dynasty.

That said, the Imperial Eggs are lavish and amazing, and it is thrilling to have four of the 42 known Imperial Eggs here in Salem for the exhibition. 

Note: There is a $5 surcharge for the special exhibition Fabergé Revealed. For more information, and to purchase tickets, click here and go to Museum Admission.

Posted by Kate on 06/21 at 12:33 PM Permalink

The Sound of Music at North Shore Music Theatre

DO-RE-MI: Lisa O'Hare as Maria with the von Trapp children in North Shore Music Theatre's production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC running June 11 - 23, 2013. Photo©Paul Lyden

It must be a challenge to present a musical that is beloved at the level of The Sound of Music. Not only does the show have an adoring audience of millions, but this adoring audience is most likely familiar with the film version of the story.  I'm a member of that film-loving, Christopher Plummer and Julie Andrews adoring, audience.  I had never seen The Sound of Music on Stage. And, to be honest, my personal threshold of enjoyment of the film version of The Sound of Music revolves around whether or not the network airing the movie cuts out the wedding scene to fit the movie into its prescribed block of time. 

Bill Hanney's North Shore Music Theatre in Beverly took my notion of a challenge and through it away.  This production of The Sound of Music is enthralling, from the cast to the sets to the costumes.  Lisa O'Hare and David Andrew MacDonald are amazing as Maria and Captain Von Trapp, and Suzanne Ishee's performance as the Mother Abbess gave me chills. These three performers, and the entire cast of the show provided a night of smiles, laughs, and true theatrical entertainment.  And, I am happy to report, the wedding scene is present, and it is glorious. 

The NSMT's production of The Sound of Music runs through June 23, with two additional shows added to accommodate sell-out audiences. Tickets are available online and at the box office.  This is the beginning of an exciting season of musicals at North Shore Music Theatre. The Wizard of Oz takes the stage next, followed by Cats and then La Cage Au Folles

For tickets and information: North Shore Music Theatre,, (979) 232-7200, 62 Dunham Road, Beverly, MA 01915

Posted by Kate on 06/20 at 07:00 AM Permalink

“62” Welcomes the Summer with New Cocktails

Summer is in the air – and in the drinks at 62 Restaurant & Wine Bar, located in Salem, MA. Guests are welcome to celebrate the beautiful weather with crisp, refreshing cocktails bursting with summertime fruits and flavors from 62’s new summer cocktail menu. The restaurant is thrilled to introduce a myriad of creative concoctions, including the Hemingway Daiquiri ($10), a flavorful blend of white rum, Marischino liqueur, pineapple and lime, and La Dolce Vita ($10), a perfect mixture of Tanqueray, grapefruit, lime, and basil, alongside signature restaurant favorites like the 62 Pickup ($10), a classic combination of Grand Marnier, lime, cranberry and sparkling wine. The new menu will be offered Tuesday through Saturday 5:00PM until midnight, and Sunday night 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM. 

Summer drinks at 62

Click here to see 62's Cocktail Menu.

Posted by Kate on 06/17 at 10:12 AM Permalink

PEM/PM and The Tannery Series Explore the American Dream

Courtesy image of Diggs Duke.

The June PEM/PM will feature a partnership between the museum and The Tannery Series of Newburyport presenting Indivisible: We the People in Black, White and Gray. This electric and eclectic evening of music, words and images celebrates the centrality of African American art — and artfulness — to the American identity.

Experience the American dream played out on the horn, the canvas and the page while enjoying food, community and fun. Groove to the genre-defying, multi-instrumental sounds of musician Diggs Duke. Diggs Duke has been hailed an emerging talent of the worldwide underground music scene by several of Europe’s music tastemakers. Vocalist, instrumentalist and composer, Duke has an innovative take on soul and jazz.

Listen to authors Jerald Walker and Tisa Bryant innovate, improvise and experiment in a conversation about the visible and invisible power of race and privilege in 21st-century American art and culture.

Tour PEM’s new exhibition, In Conversation: Modern African American Art, drawn from the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Conversations about individuality, relationships and change emerge in the more than 100 superlative works by 43 prominent artists. The paintings, photographs and sculpture represent immense cultural and personal struggles from the 1920s through the 1990s and reflect an extraordinary range of modern artistic production.

About the authors:
Riffing and innovating off criticism, poetry and essay, Tisa Bryant’s work peers into the storage rooms of museums and catalogs the way blackness persists in Western culture as curio, temptation and nightmare.

From the south side of Chicago, Jerald Walker's groundbreaking essays take us on a riotous quest for self-discovery as he confronts the American dream.

THURSDAY, JUNE 20, 6:30–9:30 PM

PEM/PM | Members and Salem residents FREE | Nonmembers $10 | No reservations required  | Cash bar

The Tannery Series was founded three years ago by writers Dawne Shand and Kirun Kapur. The series has focused on bringing authors to the North Shore whose writing confronts the world in essential and curious ways. Running such memorable events as “Love, Lust and Loathing” and “Are You Cool?”—often for standing-room-only audiences—the series is known for presenting serious literature in a manner that makes it fresh, accessible and fun. More information at or


Posted by Kate on 06/13 at 10:36 AM Permalink

Remembering Bridget Bishop

Bridget Bishop's stone in the Salem Witch Trials Memorial. Photo: Tina Jordan

On June 10, 1692, Bridget Bishop was hanged, the first of 20 who would be executed over the course of the Salem Witch Trials. The trials were about a failed judicial system, not about tolerance—none of the victims actually held beliefs of which their society was intolerant. Yet tolerance is one of the most important contemporary lessons we can extrapolate from the events of 1692.

If you are part of the Salem community, you probably have a fairly well honed sense of this. Salem is where innocent people were treated terribly and where, as a result, we pay pretty close attention to how we treat people today. In 2013, this often translates to tolerance.

So many people of so many faiths, philosophies, practices and persuasions are drawn to Salem. We may not agree with or like an individual or a group, and that’s OK. Liking isn’t the point. Accepting is. We are richer as a community as a result. Salem is a city of inclusion.

The more we practice tolerance and inclusion, the more those qualities define us.  Along the way, we move from accepting differences to learning about them, to understanding and inclusion on a whole new level. Who could have imagined Gay Pride month not that long ago?

In Salem you can be African American or an actor or Wiccan or divorced or an artist or Jewish  or illegitimate or transgender or an Atheist or a woman…all people who, at one time or another, have been victims of intolerance and social injustice.

Join the Salem Award Foundation for a brief ceremony at the Salem Witch Trials Memorial on Monday, June 10, at noon to honor Bridget Bishop. Think about her moral courage and the price she paid. She stood up for her truth, but she didn’t stand a chance in the Salem she knew.  It’s our turn now to stand up for truth and tolerance and what is right in the Salem we know. We owe it to Bridget Bishop…and to each other.

- Shelby Hypes for the Salem Award Foundation

Posted by Guest on 06/09 at 09:00 AM Permalink

Salem Arts Festival

S.T. Gately, Oil on Canvas

Don't miss the Salem Arts Festival this weekend!

Posted by Kate on 06/07 at 03:02 PM Permalink

Happy Running!

Wicked Half Marathon Start

June 5 is National Running Day, and there are several ways to get your run on in Salem this year. From road races to fun-runs to running clubs to really great running routes, Salem is runner-friendly and proud of it.

In 2011, Salem was designated a runner-friendly community by the Road Runners Club of America.  Here are a few reasons why:

If you get your run on in Salem today or any day, take a picture and share it with us on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter (or all three!). Tag #runsalem where appropriate so we're sure to find you.

Happy National Running Day!

Runner Friendly Community



Posted by Kate on 06/05 at 08:00 AM Permalink

The Archaeology of Folklore - a lecture about magic and counter-magic in Early New England

The Archaeology of Folklore - a lecture about magic and counter-magic in Early New England

Folk magic is a far more common element in our colonial landscape than most of us realize.  Witch bottles, daisy wheel marks, well-worn shoes by fireplaces or a coin placed under a threshold are examples of the counter-magic employed to protect one’s home and family from evil. They are also evidence that New Englanders dabbled in magic, and feared witches and supernatural forces long after the Salem witch trials ended.  Join us for an evening exploring this fascinating subject with Emerson “Tad” Baker, Professor of History at Salem State University. Baker has found evidence of counter-magic in his archaeological excavations and in standing early New England homes. His most recent book is The Devil of Great Island: Witchcraft and Magic in Early New England, and he is currently writing a history of the Salem witch trials for Oxford University Press’s Pivotal Moments in American History series. Baker also served as a consultant and on-camera expert for the Emmy-nominated PBS television series, Colonial House.   

The Archaeology of Folklore - a lecture about magic and counter-magic in Early New England
June 10, 2013 at 7:00 PM
Old Town Hall, Derby Square, Salem
Tickets cost $10.00 and are available at

This event is hosted by the City of Salem Witch House as part of their Lessons of 1692 Education Series marking the first execution during the Witchcraft Hysteria, the execution of Bridget Bishop. Proceeds to benefit the Salem Award Foundation for Human Rights and Social Justice.

Posted by Kate on 06/03 at 08:46 AM Permalink

Salem’s Roast Meat Hill and Beyond

Jim McCallister Roast Meat Hill and Beyond Lecture

Please click here if picture is not displayed.

Posted by Kate on 06/01 at 04:23 PM Permalink

Flag Raising to kick-off Pride month celebrations in Salem

Pride Flags above Riley Plaza in 2012

Mayor Driscoll to Kick-Off LGBT Pride Month with Salem Pride Flag Raising Ceremony

Mayor Kimberley Driscoll, along with local officials and community groups, will kick-off Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month in Salem with a Pride Flag Raising Ceremony at Riley Plaza (intersection of Washington Street and Norman Street near the Post Office) this Friday, May 31st at 5:00 p.m.

Last year, Salem resident and LGBT activist Gary “Gigi” Gill donated pride flags to the City to be flown above Riley Plaza and Salem City Hall. On Friday, Gigi will continue this tradition and Mayor Driscoll invites the Salem and North Shore community to come together to help raise the flags and celebrate Salem’s proud diversity.

The City is also preparing for the 2nd Annual North Shore Pride Festival & Parade at the end of June.  Additional Salem Pride events can be found at

The flag raising ceremony is open to the public and will consist of a brief speaking program, including an interfaith prayer and song, followed by the raising of the pride flags at Riley Plaza.

Participants will include:  

Mayor Kimberley Driscoll, State Representative John Keenan, Salem State University President Patricia Maguire Meservey, Salem Police Chief Paul Tucker, Salem Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Russell, Salem Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Rinus Oosthoek, Members of the Salem City Council & School Committee, Ceremony Organizer Gary “Gigi” Gill, Reverend David & Deborah Weekley, Singer Songwriter Karen Grenier

As well as members of the following community groups:
Go Out Loud, North Shore Alliance of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender Youth (NAGLY), North Shore Elder Services, North Shore Pride, Over the Rainbow Coalition, Parents United of Salem, Salem Award Foundation, Salem No Place for Hate Committee

Posted by Kate on 05/30 at 04:55 PM Permalink

Let’s go sailing!

Schooner FAME of Salem

The Schooner FAME, a replica 1812 Privateer that sails from Pickering Wharf in Salem, begins her sailing season this weekend, and they are looking forward to another spectacular season on Salem Sound! They are sailing Saturday and Sunday at 2, 4, and 6 PM and Monday at 12, 2, and 4 PM. If the forecasters are right, Sunday and Monday might be better weather.

Throughout the month of June, FAME will depart Saturdays at 2, 4, and 6 PM and Sundays at 12, 2, and 4 PM. Beginning on June 29, FAME sails every day, weather permitting, right through Labor Day weekend. Then it's back to weekends through Halloween.

FAME was recently named by Yankee Magazine as the Best Day Sail in Massachusetts!

Ticket prices remain just $30 for adults, $20 for seniors, and $15 for children under 13 — the lowest prices of any schooner on the North Shore. Come out for a sail!


As in years past, FAME will sail at 6:15 PM on July 4th and will stay out until shortly before the Harbormaster closes the channel — usually around 8:30 PM. We’ll return to our dock and from there we’ll have a front-row view of the fireworks on Derby Wharf, which begin at 9:00 PM.

Tickets for this popular cruise are $65 per person and always sell out. To buy tickets in advance, call us at 978-729-7600 or visit our website,

We will also sail at 12, 2 and 4 PM on July 4th. Regular ticket prices apply.

Posted by Kate on 05/25 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Memorial Day Observances in Salem

Hoisting Old Glory aboard Tall Ship Friendship. Photo: Leighton O'Connor

Here is the schedule of Salem's Memorial Day observances for this weekend.

Sunday, May 26

10:30 AM . . . Wreath laying ceremony at the Veterans Section of St. Mary's cemetery off of North Street.

11:30 AM . . . Mass at St. John's on St. Peter Street.

12:30 PM . . . (Approximately) following Mass will be a naval cannon salute to those lost at sea at Winter Island.
1:00 PM . . .  (Approximately) Collation at the Polish League of American Veterans (PLAV) club on Daniels Street. All are welcome to attend.

Monday, May 27

10:30 AM . . . Parade departs from Commercial Street. Free Trolley ride for any veteran unable to march.

11:00 AM . . . Memorial Day ceremony at Green Lawn cemetery. Guest speaker is Gold Star mother, Christina Ayube

12:30 PM . . . (Approximately) Collation at the VFW, 95 Derby Street. All are welcome to attend.

Whether you are in the area or traveling this weekend, have a safe and enjoyable time, and please pay your respects to those that have made the ultimate sacrifice for us.

Posted by Kate on 05/24 at 10:06 AM Permalink

Know before you go: Salem Maritime National Historic Site

Custom House at Salem Maritime National Historic Site. Photo: Susan Plutsky

If you have visited Salem during this spring, you may have noticed some changes at Salem Maritime National Historic Site.  Some of the changes are good (tours are free!), and some of the changes are less good (the Orientation Center is closed), and I'm here to tell you that the National Park Service in Salem is working diligently to provide interpretation of Salem Maritime National Historic Site to the visiting public. 

Here is some information that may be helpful if you are planning a visit that includes Salem Maritime and the Tall Ship Friendship during 2013:

  • The Orientation Center on Derby Street is closed in 2013 due to federal budget reductions, which have resulted in reduced staffing levels and service hours at the park.
  • All services previously provided at the Orientation Center are available at the Visitor Center at 2 New Liberty Street.
  • The Visitor Center at 2 New Liberty Street is open 10am-4pm weekdays, 9am-5pm Saturday, 10am - 5pm Sunday.
  • Rangers and NPS staff walk the site and wharves daily providing park information to visitors.
  • Visitors can book a free ranger-guided tour by calling the Visitor Center at (978) 740-1650 or stopping by the Visitor Center.  All tours are offered on a first-come, first-serve basis.  Space is limited and reservations are required. Tours are not offered on Tuesday and Wednesday. 

If you find yourself at the Orientation Center at 160 Derby Street, you will find this flyer on the door.

There is still plenty of activity at Salem Maritime National Historic Site. Click here for the Tour and Program Schedule in May and June.

Visit for complete information on visiting the Park. 


Posted by Kate on 05/22 at 08:54 AM Permalink


Rioja Wine and BBQ at Pamplemousse

Pamplemousse is having a special Rioja Wine & BBQ tasting on Thursday, May 23 from 4-7 PM.  Sample a range of Rioja, perfect for summer entertaining, and BBQ from Chef John Andrews. Enter to win a Weber Grill!

Posted by Kate on 05/21 at 01:00 AM Permalink

A Delicate Balance at Salem Theatre Company

Don't miss Salem Theatre Company's final performance of their Tenth Season! 

Salem Theatre Company presents a Delicate Balance


Edward Albee's A Delicate Balance at STC Theater
90 Lafayette Street, Salem, MA 01970

May 9 - June 1

Hailed as one of the great American plays of the 20th Century, STC's production of A Delicate Balance is sponsored by Beverly Cooperative Bank, supported by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council (a state agency) and will have 15 performances over four weeks in the STC Theater at 90 Lafayette Street in Salem from May 9 – June 1. Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 5:00 p.m. Tickets are $25 for Adults, $20 for Seniors and $10 for Students and are available online at or by calling Ovation Tix at 866-811-4111.

Posted by Kate on 05/20 at 03:27 PM Permalink

Join us on Instagram

We are filtering our photos on Instagram! Join us and share your images of Salem. We would love to see and share your perspective.  Tag your photos with #SalemMA so we can find them, and if you tag with #DestSalem, we just might use one in a future blog or publication. 

Salem Common (Bob Welch)


The Friendship #tinyplanet (spatialh)

Here are three of our images that you will find on Instagram.

Essex Street Pedestrian Mall and Almy's Clock (Destination Salem)


Kitchen Witch gift set at Omen (Destination Salem)


View of Finz from Congress Street (Destination Salem)

Sometimes you'll see our Instagram posts on our Twitter feed, too.

Posted by Kate on 05/18 at 09:33 AM Permalink

Last chance to see Nick Cave Soundsuits at PEM

This is your last chance to experience what everyone's been talking about! See three of Nick Cave's one-of-a-kind Soundsuits, which are part sculpture, part costume and part performance. Come dance along in the exhibition's immersive video projection, which closes on Monday, May 27. Learn more about FreePort [No. 006]: Nick Cave

Find more videos of Nick Cave's soundsuits and the PEM on YouTube.


Posted by Kate on 05/17 at 08:52 AM Permalink

Calories don’t count on Mother’s Day

Salem mom Anna Phillips, circa 1920. The Phillips House on Chestnut Street, will offer free admission for moms on Mother's Day.We all know that calories are moot on Mother’s Day, so be sure to follow up that breakfast-in-bed with brunch, lunch or dinner at one of Salem’s wonderful restaurants. They are pulling out all of stops to help you honor mom.  Here’s a quick round-up.

We encourage you to make reservations, as many of these events will sell out. 

62 Restaurant & Winebar will be serving their regular menu as well as many fantastic specials on Mother’s Day, 11:00 AM - 9:00 PM. 978 744 0062,, 62 Wharf St, Pickering Wharf, Salem.

Capt’s Waterfront Premium Steak & Seafood will be serving their Mother’s Day Brunch until 4:00 PM. $29.99 for 4 course meal which includes hors d’oeuvres, raw bar, soup, salad, entrée and dessert. 978-741-0555,, 94 Wharf St, Pickering Wharf, Salem.

Finz Seafood Grill will be serving a Mother’s Day Buffet that features a raw bar, salads, breakfast, breads, and carving, seafood and dessert stations. $39.99 for adults, $15.99 for children 12 and under.   978-744-8485,, 76 Wharf Street, Pickering Wharf, Salem.

The Hawthorne Hotel is serving their Mother’s Day Grand Buffet from 10:30 AM - 7:00 PM. $42.95 for adults, Children $2 per year of age. 978-825-4311,, 8 Washington Square West, Salem.

Peabody Essex Museum is serving a sumptuous Mother’s Day Brunch in the Garden Restaurant from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM. $38 for adults, $15.95 for children. Members receive a 10% discount. Brunch includes cost of museum admission. 978-745-9500, ext. 3157,, 161 Essex St, Salem.

Salem Waterfront Hotel is serving a Mother’s Day Breakfast Brunch from 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM. $39.95 for adults, $16.95 for children 12 and under. Kids under 3 are free. 978-619-1120,, 225 Derby Street, Salem.

The Grapevine’s Mother’s Day menu will feature a 4-course meal starting. Seatings begin at 11:00 AM. $39 for brunch or dinner.  978-745-9335,, 26 Congress Street, Salem.

Victoria Station’s Mother’s Day Buffet will be served from 11:00 AM until 6:00 PM. Cost for adults $30, $15 for kids, children under 5 are free. 978-745-3400,, 86 Wharf Street, Pickering Wharf, Salem.

Posted by Kate on 05/10 at 12:39 PM Permalink

Destination Weddings in Salem

Once upon a time in a land far, far away, weddings happened in June. And they happened close to home. In your childhood church, and maybe even your backyard.  (Like I said, once upon a time...)  Flash forward to 2013 and 2014, and couples are seeking unique destinations for their weddings, rehearsals, after-brunch, and everything in between.

A garden wedding at the House of the Seven Gables

Of course, if you are planning a wedding, you already know all of this.

Salem, Massachusetts is a unique, historic wedding destination that is perfect for guests and bridal parties from near and far.  Within the walkable downtown district you can...

And, best of all, Salem has a great entertainment schedule and downtown accommodations so your guests can arrive, park, and stay. No worries about driving - but if you need to transport the wedding party, The Salem Trolley may be the ride you're looking for.

Salem Trolley Wedding

Find more information about planning a wedding on  You are also welcome to contact us at Destination Salem for recommendations and information.  If you need information for your guests, we are happy to provide Salem Guides in bulk for your gift bags or to send to guests in advance.

Reception aboard Mahi Mahi Cruises


Posted by Kate on 05/02 at 03:13 PM Permalink

Memory Gardens: The Kerouac Symposium 40 Years Later

In 1973, Salem State University held one of the first ever academic conferences about Beat writer Jack Kerouac. Fast forward to 2013 and the university has decided to celebrate Kerouac’s genius with scholars and some of the author’s artistic collaborators while offering a retrospective on that first event.

Kerouac Images Collage

Memory Gardens: The Kerouac Symposium 40 Years Later will take place May 2 and 3 in various venues on the Salem State campus and in downtown Salem. The symposium opens May 2 with Bebop and Beats: An Evening of Music and Beat Poetry featuring various local musicians and special guest, Laura Boss, editor of Lips Poetry Magazine. This will be held at the Gulu Gulu Café at 8 pm.

On Friday, May 3 a panel discussion, Kerouac and the Beats, will take place in Salem State University’s Marsh Hall, Room 210 from 11 to 1 pm. Panelists include noted Kerouac scholars: Ann Douglas, Matt Theado and Gerald Nicosia.  The symposium wraps up with a screening of Pull My Daisy from 4-6:30 pm with special guest David Amram, the composer of the film’s score. This takes place at the Peabody Essex Museum’s Morse Auditorium.

Admission to symposium events is free. For additional information visit:

This symposium is sponsored by the Salem State University Foundation in conjunction with  the Salem State College of Arts and Sciences, English Department  and Center for Creative and Performing Arts.

Posted by Kate on 04/25 at 08:49 AM Permalink

History is Delicious

The Salem Food Tour is a scrumptious experience, connecting Salem's rich maritime history, specifically the spice trade, with its robust restaurant scene.  Led by local guide and Salem Food Tours owner Karen Scalia, a Salem Food Tour celebrates local chefs, locally sourced foods, and the five senses. 

Salem Food Tours host Karen Scalia at Milk and Honey Green Grocer

Karen works with a variety of restaurants and specialty food tours, but all of them are sourcing something locally, and most of them promote that local connection through their chalkboards and menus.  Karen chooses approximately five stops from her partner restaurants, but most of the food tours have two things in common: an opening at Salem Spice on Pickering Wharf, and a tastebud-amazing finale at one of Salem's upscale restaurants. 

Salem Spice is an excellent opening because of both its view and its contents.  While gazing out to the harbor and tall ship Friendship, tour participants will hear details of the spice trade and the importance of spice to the early Salem economy.  A spice tasting sets the palate for the culinary journey to come.

Scratch Kitchen served pea soup, mussels, and bacon-dusted French fries.

I don't want to give away all of Karen's secrets, but I do want to assure you that this is a tour for foodies and history buffs, alike. The food samples are more like mini-meals, and by the time our tour was complete, I had eaten enough to not only feel full and content, but I also felt a bit of guilt that I had taken this marvelous tour without my husband.  

Karen carries a bag of practical items like Benadryl and hand sanitizer, and she also had exhibits, photos and documents that enriched the tour by making connections between something we were eating, smelling, or seeing and the people of Salem from a bygone era: An 18th-century cookbook, a 17th-century recipe, a photo that provided historical context.

Fried Oysters complimented the signature Wasabi Stoli Oysters at Finz

The Salem Food Tour lasts approximately three hours, costs $54 per person, and is limited to 12 participants per tour.  The cost of the tour includes all tastings (which are more substantial than what I consider a "taste").  In addition to the regular Salem Food Tour, Karen has a Vegan Food Tour, which is offered periodically. Please check her web site for scheduling details.  For more information, visit

Dessert at 62 Restaurant and Winebar was Brioche filled with melted Nutella


Posted by Kate on 04/23 at 08:56 AM Permalink

Salem Award Foundation promotes volunteerism

In Recognition of National Volunteer Week - April 21 - 27

How important are volunteers? cited the fact that 61.8 million individuals in the U.S. contributed 8 billion hours worth $162 billion in 2008, about the same as the GDP of Egypt! And that was five years ago—the latest numbers I could find.

We all benefit from volunteers, as individuals and as a community. Volunteers serve on city boards and church committees. They help build houses, tutor children, deliver meals, and coach sports teams. They act politically, send clothing to disaster victims, and fight for gender, racial, ethnic, religious, and sexual equality.

The Salem Award Foundation (SAF) promotes the work of individuals and organizations speaking for those who have no voice, acting for those who cannot advocate for themselves. Many of them are volunteers. Everyone involved with the SAF is a volunteer. All of the funds that support our activities, including the $10,000 Salem Award, are “volunteered” as well. The SAF is not subsidized by the City of Salem or Salem State University.

Want to help? We’re expanding our activities and looking for folks to join us. Volunteer with the SAF—or with any worthwhile organization, for that matter. Not only will you be helping your community or those in need, it’s a great way to make new friends while you make a difference and make Salem even better. Need another reason? They say that volunteers have less heart disease, lower rates of depression and live longer! Give it up for volunteers!

Mayor Kim Driscoll, Award Recipient Thomas Doyle, SAF Chair Julie Rose, Award Recipient Horace Seldon, and SSU President Dr. Patricia Meservey at the Salem Award presentation at the Peabody Essex Museum on March 26. (Photo by John Andrews, Social Palates)

On March 26th, Tom Doyle and Horace Seldon joined the ranks of Salem Award recipients. They have given unstintingly of themselves, Doyle in exposing sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and supporting its victims, Seldon in teaching and acting to end systemic racism in America. 

Learn more at

Salem Award Logo


Posted by guest blogger Shelby Hypes for the Salem Award Foundation

Posted by Guest on 04/21 at 08:00 AM Permalink

Keep on Running

We are all grappling with the events of Monday - Patriots Day, Marathon Monday - in Boston, and I can't add any clarification to the events.  My friends and my friends' families and friends were running or spectating or volunteering at the marathon.  And I hope all of those directly affected by the senseless violence are able to seek out the support and healing they need.

There will be a vigil on Salem Common tonight, Thursday, April 18.  Many people are running or walking that last mile that thousands of marathoners were denied, and many, many more will be lighting candles in support of Boston.  You can find more information on the vigil on Facebook.

If you are looking for ways to spend the final days of school vacation week, Boston is open and the attractions, museums, and neighborhoods that may have been closed earlier in the week are, for the most part, open again. You can find more information on and their Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Many people have chosen Salem as their alternate destination this week, and I commend the accommodations and attractions that have welcomed marathoners with waived admission and hosted overnight stays.  We welcome you all to Salem, whatever your motivation for visiting, and we know Boston will be back to business as usual soon.

Salem has a large, energetic running community and the marathon bombings have struck this community - in Salem and everywhere - at its core.  I suppose the bright spot may be that running for many is not only a path to fitness, but a method of coping with issues large and small. So to all those runners affected, I say, Keep on Running.

To those who were in harm's way on Monday, words cannot express the sadness, but I hope the thoughts, prayers, and wishes coming from around the globe are able to lift you just a bit.

If you are seeking a way to help the victims of the Boston bombings, please visit The One Fund

Posted by Kate on 04/18 at 08:31 AM Permalink

Vacation Week in Salem

If you're at all like me, it has recently dawned on you that school vacation week is coming up SOON and you have an inkling of where you would like to go, but no real concept of how to go or what to do or how much you can cram into a long weekend or mid-week overnight.  And as much as we like the insights provided by TripAdvisor and Google, sometimes you just need a human being to help shed some light on how to do what with whom.

I'm here to help.

If you're thinking, "Salem would be a great long weekend to bookend school vacation week," you are absolutely right.  And perhaps you're thinking, "I want to take my kids to Salem for the history - the Witch Trials History - but what else is there to do?" And, "How long does it take?"  Or, "Where is Salem, anyway?" I have some answers for you.

Salem is located 15 miles north of Boston. We are a two-hour drive from Hartford, two hours from Mystic, Connecticut, about ninety minutes from Plymouth, forty-five minutes from Lexington and Concord.  Once you get to Salem, we are a walkable city (the whole city is only 8 square miles, and the historic downtown is just over a mile in diameter).  We recommend parking your car and walking between sites. You'll see more that way, and Salem offers some of the most unique window shopping you'll find. Anywhere.

Salem has two full-service hotels, The Hawthorne Hotel and the Salem Waterfront Hotel; a motel, The Clipper Ship; The Salem Inn, and several B&Bs (some of which are seasonal, some of which are kid-friendly).  Check out the accommodations on, and note that the Salem Waterfront Hotel offers a Pizza & Pool package, and the Salem Inn has family suites. 

The Salem Witch Trials of 1692 left an indelible mark on Salem, and we have several attractions and museums that interpret the Trials.  The Salem Wax Museum is offering a vacation week special, and a combo-ticket is available for the Witch Dungeon, Witch History, and New England Pirate Museum (note: the Pirate Museum is only open weekends in April).  The Salem Witch Museum has a unique second exhibit (the first exhibit interprets the Trials) that presents interpretations of the word "Witch" throughout history.  The Witch House is the only house still standing in Salem with direct ties to the Witch Trials of 1692.  You'll find descriptions of each of these museums and attractions on

Salem Trolley on Essex Street, passing the Peabody Essex Museum

But we aren't all about the Witch Trials. Mix in a dash of maritime heritage at the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, where tours are free.  And climb the secret staircase (if you can find it) at the House of the Seven Gables

The most robust April vacation week (for the week of April 15-19) in Salem can be found at the Peabody Essex Museum.  Programming will appeal to kids of all ages, and their parents, and the entire museum is very family-friendly.  Within the PEM galleries, you'll find the model of the tall ship Friendship that was used to build the full-sized replica at Salem Maritime National Historic Site, and  you will find a contemporary art installation of sound suits by Nick Cave, and you will find the Chinese Moon Bed used in The Last Emporer. Your kids won't care about that last reference, but it's awfully cool for us parents. 

The House of the Seven Gables

There's a lot more to Salem, and I always recommend families hop aboard a Salem Trolley tour to get that live one-hour narration. It's impossible not to learn something new on the Salem Trolley, and it will help you chart the rest of your visit.  If you are traveling with teens, check out Witch City Segway - it's a hip tour that will share the history and get you out and around Salem, on Segways.

If your family is like mine, they are going to require food.  Reds Sandwich Shop is great for breakfast or lunch (cash only, pancakes as big as your head), and it is located in the old London Coffee House, which is where Patriots once met to plan the revolution.  We have a lot of food options in Salem, so if you have a hankering  for Italian, Indian, pizza, Mediterranean, seafood, soup, or burgers, we can do that.  You'll find listings of our restaurants on  Most are family friendly, so your decision can be based on price and menu. 

If you're planning a long weekend, book a room in Salem and spend two full days here.  Then spoke out for a day to Gloucester, which is about 30 minutes north-east from Salem, for the maritime and fishing history.  On your final day, visit Minute Man National Historic Park in Lexington on your way home.  That is a trip that would be full of pirates, Patriots, and Puritans. 

If you want to connect to Boston, you can do it car-free aboard the MBTA Commuter Rail. Salem is only 30 minutes from Boston via train, which delivers you to North Station. From North Station you can walk or Trolley to Faneuil Hall, Boston Common, and everything in between.  Visit our friends at for more Boston information.

If you need more information and inspiration, visit our FAQ and Itinerary pages, and check out the April vacation week section of our calendar for programming. 

Best wishes for a great April vacation week with your family - especially if it includes Salem!

Hot chocolate at Reds.



Posted by Kate on 04/08 at 03:01 PM Permalink

Salem to commemorate the National Guard

2012 commemoration of the first muster of the National Guard

The 376th Anniversary of the National Guard will be celebrated in Salem on Saturday, April 6 with a series of ceremonies that begin at Armory Park (corner of Liberty and Essex Streets) and progress to Salem Common. The events will culminate with a canon salute and flyover.

According to, "the Guard’s birth dates back to Dec. 13, 1636, when the North, South and East Regiments of the Massachusetts Bay Colony were formed. The first muster of those regiments then took place on Salem Common, though the actual date has been lost to history." On January 10, 2013, President Obama signed into law a bill that recognizes Salem as the birthplace of the National Guard.

2012 commemoration ceremony in Armory Park

The events on April 6 begin at 9:30 AM.  Click here to learn more.

2012 Commemoration ceremonies on Salem Common

Flyover during 2012 commemoration ceremonies in honor of the National Guard

Visit for information on the Ceremony that celebrated Salem's designation as the birthplace of the National Guard.

Posted by Kate on 04/05 at 01:45 PM Permalink

Salem First Friday: Come on down!

Salem First Fridays invites locals and visitors to enjoy downtown

Dancers at Salem First Friday in March

Finz Seafood will serve $1.00 oysters. The Scarlet Letter Press will host a reception celebrating a local artist. Contemporary dancers will fill the corridors of Museum Place Mall. Caffe Graziani is holding a "Circolo Italiano," with Italian speakers discussing all manner of topics. These are examples of Salem First Fridays, a monthly event that invites shoppers and diners of all ages to shop local and late in downtown Salem.

Participating businesses will stay open until at least 8:00 PM, and promotions begin as early as5:00 PM. There are manicures and Merlot, half-priced appetizers, author readings, and cooking demonstrations. While most participating businesses are retail and restaurants, Coldwell Banker Real Estate is hosting a reception and the YMCA offers childcare for 5-12 year olds at a discounted First Friday rate. More than 25 businesses are scheduled to participate in the April 5 First Friday.

Salem First Fridays began in October 2012, and the monthly events provide an opportunity for businesses to stay open late and create a festive atmosphere throughout the year. In March, Salem Main Streets partnered with Disney to create an "Oz, the Great and Powerful" themed First Friday scavenger hunt on Instagram. The April First Friday, on April 5, will celebrate spring with dance, art, music, shopping, and food.  Future First Friday themes will include Arts & Education on May 3, and Salem Pride on June 7.

Additional information on Salem First Friday, including printable program lists, can be found at and additional information can be found on Facebook.  


Salem First Fridays are produced by Salem Main Streets  and the City of Salem.

Posted by Kate on 04/04 at 10:17 AM Permalink

Celebrating Women’s History

Anna Phillips enjoying some leisure time in the garden. Courtesy the Phillips House.

Have you seen the bumper sticker that reads, "Boring women seldom make history"?  Well, Salem women were seldom boring.  The women of Salem have been philanthropists, preservationists, educators, writers, activists, and visionaries.  Salem women have altered the course of history, and on Saturday, March 30 they will be recognized for their contributions at the Phillips House and the Witch House.

The Phillips House, which is the only home on Chestnut Street that is open to the public, will offer 45 minute tours that show what daily life was like for Anna Phillips and the Irish domestic staff who kept the house going.  Anna Phillips was the quintessential Chestnut Street wife of the early twentieth century.  Not only did she maintain a beautiful home with the help of her Irish ‘girls’ but she remained true to her community through acts of a volunteerism and service.   If you would like more details, please contact the Phillips House at 978-744-0440.

The Witch House, 310 Essex Street, will feature a display on 17th century female scholars and academics.  The 16th-century brought a widening academic arena increasingly populated by women.  By the 17th-century we find women recognized as philosophers, astronomers, chemists and medical practitioners.  Salem colonist Elizabeth Corwin would have had access to the published works of several of these women and to their field of study.

Author Bonnie Hurd Smith, who wrote the Salem Women's Heritage Trail, will be signing and selling her books on women's history, including the just-released We Believe in You: 12 Stories of Courage, Action, and Faith for Women and Girls, walking trails in Boston, books on the 18th-century essayist and women's rights advocate Judith Sargent Murray of Gloucester, and the Salem Women's Heritage Trail.  She will be at the Witch House from 12-4.

  • Salem’s Women’s History Day
  • Saturday March 30
  • 12:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • Phillips House Museum, 34 Chestnut Street, $5.00 adults, $4.00 seniors, $2.50 students. Guided tours leave on the half-hour. 
  • The Witch House, 310 Essex Street, $8.25 adults, $6.25 seniors, $4.25 children. Self-guided tours.    
  • Women's History Day events are free to Salem residents at both museums
Posted by Kate on 03/28 at 08:47 AM Permalink

Easter Round Up

Before I talk about Easter grass and spiral hams, I want to wish a happy Passover to those who are celebrating this week, and a belated happy Solstice to those who celebrated last week. 

Easter is sneaking up on us, and while I know many of you are more organized than I am, I share this restaurant round-up for those of you who, like me, haven't made your reservations yet for Sunday.  It's not too late to make reservations yet - but it will be if you wait much longer!

  • 43 Church is offering Easter Brunch.
  • Capt's Waterfront Premium Steak & Seafood Grill will be hosting its annual Easter Extravaganza Buffet until 4:00 PM.
  • Finz Seafood is offering an Easter Brunch from 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM.
  • Nathaniel's at the Hawthorne Hotel is serving their Grand Easter Buffet from 10:30 AM - 6:00 PM.
  • Salem Waterfront Hotel & Marina is having an Elegant Easter Brunch from 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM.
  • Victoria Station will have their Infamous Easter Buffet.


I have one other edible Easter note - Coffee Time Bake Shop makes paczkis like no one else, and these delectable donuts will go away until next year on Easter. 

I've looked at these menus, and if you haven't chosen your Easter destination yet, you are in for a challenging decision! Everything looks quite delicious.  

Happy Easter, happy spring! 

Posted by Kate on 03/27 at 08:46 AM Permalink

Sixth Annual Salem Spring Fling

Salem Spring Fling at Old Town Hall on March 30, 2013

What a better way to kick off spring than to don a toga and head out to Pamplemousse’s 6th Annual Salem Spring Fling on Saturday, March 30 from 6 – 9 pm at Old Town Hall. This Bacchanalia celebration brings a sampling of culinary delights from Salem’s best restaurants, a tasting of fine wine and craft beer, music, art, and more.  Roman attire is encouraged.
Meet familiar characters from myth and legend and enjoy the goddesses, satyrs and nymphs that wander the “ Garden of Earthly Delights .” Enjoy a reading with the Oracle, have fun with friends at the Interactive Photo Booth, meet Roman Centurians and feast at a party fit for the ancient Romans.
The event is presented by Pamplemousse, who will be sampling lots of fine wine.  Spring Fling is sponsored by Magic Hat Brewing, other participating beer companies include local brands like Cody Brewing Company, Cape Ann Brewing Company, Harpoon, Narragansett, Notch American Session, Berkshire Brewing, Clown Shoes Beer, Mayflower Brewing, Element, Cisco, Ipswich , White Birch, Bantam Cider and Sap House Meadery.  Party goers will have a chance to win “Beer For A Year.”  The winner will receive one case of craft beer at the beginning of each month, donated by participating breweries.  Proceeds go to benefit The Salem Children’s Charity.
Participating restaurants include many of Salem ’s best restaurants like Finz Seafood, the Lobster Shanty, and the Grapevine as well as other fantastic food from favorites such as the Gulu Gulu Cafe, Flying Saucer Pizza, Jean Louise Pasta Company, AJ King Artisan Bakery, and new restaurants Longboard Cafe and Bar and Naumkeag Ordinary.
Food and wine/beer sampling is included in the event’s ticket price.
Qwill will also be on hand to provide music for the evening. The Boston-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer, Jesse Ciarmataro layers indie, soul, electronic, and roots to create an ethereal sound. His live performances are known for various arrangements from a six piece band to DJ sets to solo performances with live electronics or acoustic guitar and keyboard. His performance is sure to be a memorable one.
A number of local artists will also be on hand to celebrate spring. You can find a full list below.
When? Saturday, March 30, 2013 from 6PM to 9PM
Where? Old Town Hall , Derby Square , Salem
Cost? Tickets are $30 and include all costs. 

Tickets are available at Pamplemousse & Salem Cycle or online at

For more information, visit the web site or call (978)745-2900.

Posted by Kate on 03/25 at 01:37 PM Permalink

Here comes the Easter Bunny

Harbor Sweets Easter Rabbits


Salem has no shortage of chocolate, and with Easter coming up rather quickly on the calendar I thought a short list of sweet resources would help you fill your baskets with plenty of sweet stuff. 

Here's where you'll find delicious, decadent, wonderfulness that will dress up even the most artificial of Easter grass. 

  • Harbor Sweets
  • 85 Leavitt Street | (978) 745-7648 
  • Don't miss their Easter rabbit, which is filled with almond butter crunch, caramel, pecans and whole toasted almonds. They have it in milk and dark chocolate (that would be his-and-hers in our house).


  • Maria's Sweet Somethings
  • 26 Front Street | (978) 825-9111
  • Maria's has chocolate bunnies, lambs, duckies, eggs, robin's eggs and more.


  • Ye Olde Pepper Candy Company
  • 122 Derby Street | (978) 745-2744
  • Find one-stop shopping on Derby Street where Ye Olde Pepper has fully assembled Easter Baskets filled with yummy treats.


If you fill your baskets with Salem chocolates, share your pictures on Instagram and tag @destsalem or #destsalem!

Posted by Kate on 03/22 at 11:03 AM Permalink

What’s in the cards?

Strega Lori Bruno

Is it bad luck to blog about a psychic reading?  Psychic readings are a very personal experience, so I won't share any details, but I will tell you that after nearly 15 years working in Salem, I had my very first psychic reading at Magika. They were doing a fundraiser event for a local school, so I was happy to participate for the good cause, and I was amazed. (How did he know that?!

Salem's newest Witch shop, Magika is located on Pickering Wharf. The shop has water views, an alter for offerings, photographs of Strega Lori Bruno's parents and grandparents, and an as-seen-on-TV American Chainsaw dragon. Readings are done privately behind screens by Lori, Anthony, or another member of her staff.  I recommend making an appointment, because their time does book up!

Here's what I knew about psychic readings:  Many people see psychics on a regular basis; throngs of people flock to Salem psychics throughout the year, especially in October, to have their cards read and their fortune told by a Salem psychic; depending on who you ask, psychic readings are considered entertainment, therapy, and just plain fun; psychic readings can be Girls' Night Out, Date Night, or your lunch break.  Here's what a now know about psychic readings: A good one just might blow you away. 

If you're going to Magika, and you happen to make it a Girls' Night Out (or a date night, for that matter), there are several restaurants right across the street (Finz, Victoria Station, Capt's, and 62 can all be considered "across the street" by virtue of the horseshoe shape of Pickering Wharf!) so you can mull the revelations over a drink and dinner, or at least dessert! 

For more information on Salem's psychics, visit


Posted by Kate on 03/19 at 03:48 PM Permalink

The Salem Award. It’s not just an event.

Thomas Doyle Every spring the Salem Award Foundation for Human Rights & Social Justice (SAF) recognizes someone (or a group) who is speaking and acting for contemporary victims of social injustice. It’s one way to keep alive the lessons of the Salem Witch Trials. Please join us at the Peabody Essex Museum at 7:30 pm on Tuesday, March 26th when Thomas Doyle and Horace Seldon will be honored for their work. Doyle, an ordained priest, spoke truth to power in exposing sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. Inspired by Martin Luther king, Horace Seldon founded Community Change, Inc. and has taught thousands about racism and how to end it. Details at

But the Salem Award is not just an event. It’s a commitment. The SAF would like to make Salem as well known for human rights and social justice as it is for witches in general.  This includes partnering with the Peabody Essex Museum and the City to maintain the Salem Witch Trials Memorial on Charter Street as a place of reverence and remembrance. It also includes new activities to develop and broaden awareness of human rights issues. 

Check for upcoming events, like a community book read, and links to other organizations and events in the social justice arena.  Better yet, join our email list and receive monthly Horace Seldonupdates on what’s going on and how you can get involved.


Posted by guest blogger Shelby Hypes for SAF


Posted by Guest on 03/15 at 08:30 AM Permalink

Tweet, Eat, and Make Art at the March PEM/PM

Step into the future of the region’s arts scene with an evening of cutting-edge creativity. This month, the Peabody Essex Museum will join forces with local economic initiative Creative Salem as they celebrate their first year with dynamic future-focused activities, hosted by their members and friends. The evening includes a performance by Br1ght Pr1mate with their “danceable electro-pop” on hacked videogame components, and the Eternal Lotus Dancers will light the night with LED in motion.

PEM/PM Artopia

Kevin Letourneau of Creative Salem reflects on how this shared workspace for creative professionals has made so much progress in their first year. Located above the Salem Chamber of Commerce, Creative Salem currently provides private work space and collaborative opportunities for individuals working in publishing, the music industry, political campaigns, event planning, non-profits and various business upstarts.

"Creative Salem has been home to many of the city's headline-makers. In just 12 months, original productions debuted, numerous parties and events were planned, newspapers were launched, international business was conducted, local elections were won, new businesses were launched and continue to grow. It's amazing how much a centrally located workspace can ignite productivity, collaboration and success."
Also at the event, social media experts will be on hand to help artists and creative types better manage their online footprint. Attendees are encouraged to Tweet and watch their messages appear on a big screen. A blacklight photobooth will make for futuristic photo ops.

Additionally, PEM welcomes a new generation of local artists. The Studio Art program at Beverly High School hosts a pop-up exhibition of photographs, paintings, sculptures and multimedia inspired by recent exhibitions at PEM, while students from the ArtLink program share the new Salem Public Art walking tour and lead an interactive mosaic project.
Cash bar. Refreshments available for purchase in Atrium Café.

PEM/PM | Members and Salem residents FREE | Nonmembers $10 | No reservations required

Remember: The museum is now open from 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. the third Thursday of every month!

Posted by Kate on 03/13 at 11:20 AM Permalink

Compelling Films Come to Salem

I picked up (or was it handed to me?) the Salem Film Fest 2013 Schedule yesterday, and there are some really interesting films.  Most interesting, apparently, is the showing of West of Memphis because it has already sold out.  The message there is this: Buy the Festival pass if you don't want to be on the wrong side of a screening door.  Also notable is the "Movie Trailers" party at Finz on Friday night, which is being promoted as the place to go if you are having trouble deciding which film(s) should capture your attention.

This is a documentary film festival, and a highly-regarded one, so the film topics are not warm-and-fuzzy. They are real, in-depth looks at various topics.  There is even a film about making Frontline, and there is a corresponding forum with the producers of PBS's Frontline, which sounds very cool. 


There are 34 films screening between March 7 and March 14 at CinemaSalem, the Peabody Essex Museum, and the Salem Regional Visitor Center.  There is a film about the life of school buses when they are no longer school buses (did you know many of them end up in Guatemala?), there is a film about marathon runners from Ethiopia, and a film about prisoners finding redemption through fashion.  There are films about war, about sex, about music, about politics, and about dreams.  There's even a film about the theft of the Mona Lisa.  (Wait a minute - when was the Mona Lisa stolen?)

And there are unique events and opportunities to hear from the directors and producers of the documentaries, and to see the work of tomorrow's documentaries. 

In shore, the Salem Film Fest is a very cool place to be for the next week, and if you haven't picked at least one film to see, now is the time.  Come to Salem. See the world.

Posted by Kate on 03/06 at 11:13 AM Permalink

Salem First Friday goes over the Rainbow

Find yourself in Oz Scavenger Hunt

The March edition of Salem First Fridays is going to be extra-cinematically-special.  All of the regular Salem First Friday activities, including shops staying open late and restaurants offering special promotions, will be augmented by an Instagram Scavenger Hunt celebrating the release of the new Disney film, The Great and Powerful Oz.

Here's how the Scavenger Hunt works...  Visit eight participating businesses and have your Scavenger Hunt Sheet signed.  If you are on Instagram, take a picture of the Oz character sheet on display in the business and upload your picture it to Instagram with the hashtag #ozinsalem (we'd love you to hashtag #destsalem, too, but we don't want to ask too much!).

Once you have eight signatures, take it to CinemaSalem in Museum Place Mall to be entered into a drawing for fabulous, great, and powerful prizes.  CinemaSalem will have face painters and they will be showing the trailer for The Great & Powerful Oz!

Click here for the complete list of more than thirty businesses participating in Salem First Friday.  Businesses will be open until 8:00 PM or later, and most events begin at 5:00 PM.  


Salem First Friday is organized by Salem Main Streets

Posted by Kate on 02/28 at 04:30 PM Permalink

The coming week in Salem

In perusing the calendar on to find fun and interesting events to highlight on our homepage, I found quite a few events worth noting, beginning with the Princess Tea at the Hawthorne Hotel today, and concluding with Salem First Friday on, well, Friday. 

There is art and music at Salem State, Tarot reading classes at Crow Haven Corner, Drop-in Art activities for families at the Peabody Essex Museum, and a Cape Ann Beer Dinner at Finz

Not to mention jazz, blues, soul, and Privateers.  Find the events that are right for you during the week of February 25 on the Calendar at

Posted by Kate on 02/23 at 11:58 AM Permalink