7 Tall Ships to See in Salem Before Sail Boston 2017

Seven sailing ships will be in port in Salem before joining the 44 additional tall ships taking part in Sail Boston 2017. From June 13 to 16, visitors exploring Central Wharf and Derby Wharf will be able to view the fleet from land. The ships viewable from Salem include two from Germany (sloop Peter Von Danzig, and schooner Regina Germania), one from the United Kingdom (ketch Rona II), one from Latvia (sloop Spaniel), and one from Finland (ketch Vahine), along with the Pride of Baltimore and Jolie Prise.

The Regina Germania was launched in 1984. She was constructed in 1980 in Hamburg, and received an extensive renovation in 2009 where she was sandblasted and repainted with the white and blue color scheme. Her first tall ship race took place in 2002, and owners Bodo and Uwe Herrmann plan on continuing entering regattas with the Regina Germania.

The Peter Von Danzig is a 55-foot vessel that was constructed in 1992. She is part of Germany’s Academic Sailing Association, and following her launch she replaced a previous vessel by the same name which had sailed under the Association for 50 years.

The United Kingdom’s Rona II was built in 1991 and sails out of her home port of Hamble. At 77 feet, she is one of the larger vessels that will be in port in Salem before Sail Boston.

The Spaniel sails out of Riga, the capital of Latvia. She was constructed in 1979 in Szczecin, a city on the Oder River in Northwestern Poland. This sloop is one of the smaller vessels participating in Sail Boston at 56 feet.

The 65-foot Vahine sails out of Helsinki, Finland, and was built in 1972. The Vahine and the Rona II are two of only four total ketch rig ships participating in this year’s Sail Boston event.

 

For more information about Sail Boston, including a full list of participating ships at the event, please visit SailBoston.com.

Rainy Day Itinerary for Salem, MA

Don’t let the gray skies get you down! There is so much to see and do in Salem, Massachusetts even when the weather isn’t quite sunny and dry. Be sure to dress for the weather during a rainy visit to Salem, especially if you are arriving via the Salem Ferry or taking any harbor cruises as you’ll find that it is much colder on the water than on land.

If you forget your rain gear, or if the unpredictable New England weather decides to rain unexpectedly, you may want to purchase an umbrella or poncho. Pop into a local shop like Coon’s Card & Gift Shop to pick up a last-minute umbrella or poncho, or Avalanche Company Store for a sturdier jacket. Hoodies and sweatshirts are also available around town. Should the rain come with chills, sweatshirts are available at Salemdipity, Trolley Depot, and Witch Tees. You may also want to bring along an extra bag to store your wet umbrella, poncho, or jacket in, so if the rain lets up during your visit you’ll be able to comfortably carry your rain gear without wetting the rest of your belongings.

With any visit to Salem, starting at the Salem Regional Visitor Center will help you get your bearings, and learn a quick overview of what the community has to offer. While at the visitor center, you may opt to see a film screening of Salem Witch Hunt: Examine the Evidence, a 35-minute film on the history of the Salem Witch Trials.

The majority of Salem’s museums and attractions, including walking tours, are open for business rain or shine. If you are looking to minimize the time spent out in the rain, you’ll want to visit the Peabody Essex Museum. One of the nation’s fastest growing art museums, a visit here can easily last for a couple of hours or the entire day.

To learn about the Salem Witch Trials, the Salem Witch Museum, Witch Dungeon Museum, Witch History Museum, and Salem Wax Museum are all within walking distance, and all presentations and exhibits take place indoors. Also a short walk away from the visitor center is Witch Pix. Located in the Museum Place Mall, this costume studio allows you to take on the role of a witch or wizard for a memorable photo shoot experience.

You may feel like avoiding attractions that require a further walk in the rain, but luckily the Salem Trolley continues service, and can help you minimize your walk time while providing an overview of Salem’s history. Hope aboard the Trolley and take it down to the House of the Seven Gables, Ye Olde Pepper Companie, and the Salem Maritime National Historic Site.

 

The tour of the House of the Seven Gables takes place inside, though if you are up for some time outside the homes’ gardens are also a sight to see. Ye Olde Pepper Companie, and the shops on Pickering Wharf are all fully enclosed, with just short walks in between each one. Much of the Salem Maritime National Historic Site is outside however within the site’s shop, Waite and Peirce, you can learn more about site’s history while shopping for unique and authentic goods.

We may not want to believe that that the calendar is calling for soup, but warm comfort food may be on your mind for a rainy day. You may relax with a cup of clam chowder at Finz Seafood and Grill or Sea Level Oyster Bar and Kitchen, or lobster bisque from Turner’s Seafood. If you’re looking for lunch in hopes that by the time you’re finished eating the rain will have stopped, plan for a meal at Bit Bar. Before or after your meal you’ll be able to spend some time playing classic pinball and arcade games indoors. If you really want to warm up on a rainy day, the Tavern in the Hawthorne Hotel offers cozy fireside dining, or you may choose to unwind with a cup of tea at Jolie Tea Company.

However you choose to spend a rainy day in Salem, don’t let the rain ruin your plans. Even outdoor attractions like walking tours and harbor tours can usually run in the rain. By dressing for the weather and bringing along an umbrella you should be all set to enjoy a day touring downtown Salem.

9th Annual Salem Arts Festival

The Salem Arts Festival returns for its ninth year with a weekend full of family-friendly programming devoted to the arts in our community. The event kicks off at 6:00 pm on Friday June 2 with viewings of art in Old Town Hall and live music outside in Derby Square. The rest of the Festival will be located throughout Derby Square, Artists’ Row, Front Street, and within Old Town Hall and will feature live musical performances, belly dancing, public art projects, a vibrant street fair and more.

 

The festival celebrates various art forms and gives attendees of all ages creative ways to create art. Featured art styles will include but are not limited to painting, photography, sculpture, installation, dance, music, writing, film, new media, performance, theater, poetry, culinary, and visual art. Also planned for the event are local food pop-ups, a mural slam, and vendors specializing in handmade, locally sourced, and ethically crafted goods.

The Salem Arts Festival will also celebrate this year’s featured community art project: Tidal Shift. As part of Tidal Shift, the Salem Sound Watershed community created jellyfish made out of recycled plastic bags that have been installed over Front Street. Tidal Shift also serves to increase awareness of how single-use plastic bags can impact marine life, like sea turtles who often mistake floating plastic bags for jellyfish, which make up a significant part of their diets. The project comes with perfect timing as Salem is currently moving away from using single-use plastic bags in instances where reusable bags could be used instead.

The Salem Arts Festival is organized by Salem Main Streets, and would not be possible without the generous support of sponsors and volunteers. The Salem Arts Festival is just one part of Salem Main Street’s effort to promote Salem’s downtown neighborhood as a destination for attractions, community projects, dining, shopping, and cultural events throughout the year. For more information about the Salem Arts Festival visit SalemArtsFestival.com or follow the event on Facebook.

Augmented reality is coming to Salem Maritime

Augmented Reality image Boston Cyberarts

The Augmented Landscape at Salem Maritime National Historic Site, Boston Cyberarts

Things are about to get virtually interesting at Salem Maritime National Historic Site!

Boston Cyberarts has commissioned four internationally acclaimed artists–John Craig Freeman, Kristin Lucas, Will Pappenheimer and Tamiko Thiel–to create 8 Augmented Reality (AR) sculptures for The Augmented Landscape, an outdoor exhibition that will take place at Salem Maritime National Historic Site.

Augmented reality is computer-generated sound, video or graphics that are layered into a real-world environment. Sited throughout the park, either on the land and or in Salem harbor, the sculptures will be positioned via GPS, each in a specific place on the Salem campus, and viewable by using the augmented reality application Layar (free for iOS and Android) on a smartphone or tablet.

The National Park Service will have printed maps available for visitors that include the site of each piece, an image, artists’ information, title of the work and how to download the app to view the work. The information will also be available online, at the Boston Cyberarts and NPS websites. The NPS will have tablets or smartphones available for checkout. Visits to the site are free to the public.

The Augmented Landscape is supported in part by a $10,000 Art Works matching grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and funds from the Salem Cultural Council.

The free exhibition will open to the public on Saturday, May 27, and remain on view through November 30, 2017.

 

FAME’s Visit to Sail Boston Recalls Tumultuous War of 1812

by Capt. Michael Rutstein

Although the Salem-based schooner FAME is one of the smaller vessels attending next month’s Sail Boston event, she has a fascinating connection to Boston’s history.

FAME is a replica of a Salem privateer of the same name from the War of 1812. During the war, Salem — then a major seaport and a serious rival to Boston — sent out over 40 privateers to attack British merchant shipping. In Boston, however, many influential shipowners opposed the war. Instead of sending out privateers, they carried on illegal trade with the British.

After Congress acted in 1813 to criminalize this trading with the enemy, Salem privateers such as FAME took it on themselves to police Boston Harbor. They would chase down and search inbound ships for evidence that they had been smuggling. In August of 1813, FAME and another Salem privateer (tellingly named CASTIGATOR) stopped an incoming Boston brig called the DISPATCH and concluded that she had been trading in British ports. They put a prize crew on board and began to convey the vessel into Boston to be impounded.

However, members of the brig’s crew escaped and rowed themselves quickly up to town, where they located the brig’s owner, Boston merchant Cornelius Coolidge. Coolidge was incensed to hear that his brig had been seized by privateers. He gathered a score of men armed with muskets and set off in two large rowboats to free the DISPATCH. Soon, a firefight had broken out in the middle of Boston Harbor between the prize crew, the privateer schooners, and Coolidge’s armed boats. The battle was only ended by the intervention of the Federal garrison at Fort Independence.

After a sensational trial in which no less than three witnesses were charged with perjury, DISPATCH was awarded to the privateers as lawful prize.

It was a victory for Salem and her mariners, and the smugglers of Boston were suitably “castigated”. But the decades after the war saw a steady movement of talent and capital from Salem to Boston, which has ever since reigned as the chief port and economic center of Massachusetts.

A fleet of international Tall Ships is sailing into Boston this month in the largest gathering of its kind in 17 years. The festival-opening Parade of Sail happens on Saturday, June 17. Many of the ships will be open for boarding in Boston June 18-21. The fleet departs Boston on June 22, bound for a starting line off Gloucester. From that point, they will race to Nova Scotia.

FAME, which is based at Salem’s Pickering Wharf Marina, will participate in the Parade on the 17th and offers round trips from Salem to Boston each day of Sail Boston 2017. She’ll also be sailing out to watch the start of the race on the 22nd.

Tickets are available at SchoonerFame.com.

“Ocean Liners: Glamour, Speed, and Style” at the Peabody Essex Museum

 

F. Earl for Henri Fichon, Paris, Design for a poster for the White Star Line and Moet & Chandon, about 1912, oil on canvas. Museum purchase, 2014.13.1. Photo by Kathy Tarantola.

Ocean Liners: Glamour, Speed, and Style, the latest exhibition at the Peabody Essex Museum, details the design and technical sides of these grand vessels while also placing them into an international cultural narrative. In collaboration with the Victoria and Albert Museum, London (V&A), this event is the first of its kind as previous exhibits have focused on ocean liners, but none have taken into consideration their legacy across different nations.

PEM was founded by sea captains and merchant traders in 1799, and in addition to the various pieces brought to Salem during the 18th and 19th centuries, the museum has been collecting works related to ocean liners since the 1870s. Continuing in this maritime tradition, Ocean Liners: Glamour Speed, and Style takes guests on a voyage from the elegant ocean liners to contemporary cruise ships and everything in between.

Among the pieces shown in the exhibit, guests may expect to see brightly colored posters originally used during advertising campaigns in the early 20th century to change public beliefs that ocean travel was luxurious and elegant rather than grimy and unsafe. Other pieces include models of well-known ocean liners like the Queen Elizabeth (pictured below), and decorative elements from a variety of ocean liner models and time periods.

Basset-Lowke Ltd., Model of Queen Elizabeth, 1947-48, white mahogany, gunmetal, and brass. Gift of Cunard Line Ltd., 1970, M14220. © 2016 Peabody Essex Museum. Photography by Kathy Tarantola.

Ocean Liners: Glamour, Speed, and Style gives insight into the rising the rise of ocean travel as an opulent pastime while also showing open models, paperwork, and pieces of engines to portray what took place behind the scenes to make such grand travel possible. Despite companies having the technological abilities to design even faster ships, displayed in the exhibit by portions of engines and mechanical frameworks, speed was often sacrificed for comfort to further entice guests to come aboard for the ultimate leisure travel experience.

The exhibit goes on to show how other artistic elements produced onboard impacted their counterparts on land, concepts that are particularly evident when viewing cruise-wear, elegant high fashion dresses and tuxedos, and up and coming interior design ideas.

PEM hosts the Opening Day Deep Dive event to kick off the exhibit on May 20, 2017 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. During this event guests may view vintage trunks and additional models in the museum’s atrium, create their own luggage stickers, play shuffleboard, and more: Click here to view the complete event schedule. Ocean Liners: Glamour, Speed, and Style will be on view at PEM through October 9, 2017, and more information about the exhibit is available at PEM.org.

Zagster Bike Share comes to Salem

Zagster bike share bikes in salem MA

Zagster bike launch Salem MAZagster and the City of Salem has just launched a new “on-demand” bike share service that is going to be a terrific resource for residents, commuters, and visitors who want to explore the city. The Salem Bike Share has cruiser bikes available at stations located throughout the City, including Federal Street at Washington Street (near the MBTA), Front Street/Derby Square, and Blaney Street/Salem Ferry (click here for all locations).  Zagster bikes have a built-in bike lock which allows users to ride the bike as long as they want and stop wherever they want along the way and lock the bike. Bikes need to return to any Zagster-Salem station at the end of a ride.

Using the Zagster-Salem Bike Share is easy. Bikes are accessible at any station via the Zagster Mobile App – available for iPhone and Android – or online at bike.Zagster.com/Salem.

Step 1: Use the Zagster app to unlock a bike at a station.Zagster bike share bikes in salem MA
Step 2: Enjoy your ride!
Step 3: When you are ready to end your trip, bring the bike back to any Zagster station and press the lock button to end the ride.

Ridership is possible through two options:
Option 1: Hourly Rate ($3.00/hour).
Option 2: Annual Membership ($25/year or $10 with promotional code BIKESALEM through August 2017). Annual memberships provide unlimited rides with the first hour free. Additional hourly fees apply for longer rides.

Salem’s bike share features the Zagster 8, an award-winning bike known for its practical design, comfortable riding, and easy handling. The bike includes a spacious front basket that’s perfect for carrying shopping bags or personal belongings. As rider safety is a priority, every bike includes automatic lights, a bell, and full reflectors. Riders must be 18 years or older. Please obey traffic laws, wear a helmet, and be a safe rider.

 

The Maritime Fan’s Guide to Salem, MA

With the sailing season is just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to start planning a maritime fan’s visit to Salem, Massachusetts. Most known for the tragic events of 1692, Salem’s maritime trade has also greatly impacted the region we know today. During the summer months, maritime fans can even start experiencing Salem by water before arriving in town via the Salem Ferry from Boston.

Accommodations

The Salem Waterfront Hotel and Suites is located adjacent to the Pickering Wharf Marina, which houses both sail boats and power boats up to 55 feet in length. With amenities like a swimming pool, fitness center, and full service restaurant, this hotel is a wonderful option for maritime fans looking for a contemporary Salem getaway.

A short (and scenic) walk from both Pickering Wharf and the Salem Ferry is Morning Glory Bed & Breakfast. This historic Georgian Federal style building was built in 1808 and today features amenities like complimentary transportation between the Salem Ferry and MBTA Commuter Rail, breakfast, and a roof-top deck with beautiful ocean views.

To RV or tent-camp by the water, consider staying at Winter Island Park. Open seasonally from May 20 to November 1, Winter Island features a public beach, lighthouse, and a historic fort.

Attractions

The Salem Maritime National Historic Site is home to historic homes, lighthouses, and a ship that represent the site’s mission to preserve Salem’s maritime history. Visit the site to learn about the merchant vessels that helped grow Salem’s economy, take a tour of the Derby or Narbonne House, or explore the Derby Wharf Lighthouse. The site is also home to the Friendship of Salem, a replica of the original tall ship launched in 1797. Currently in drydock, the Friendship will be open for tours on a seasonal basis when she returns to Salem later this year.

Nearby the Salem Maritime National Historic Site is Pickering Wharf Marina, which includes docks for Schooner FAME and Mahi Cruises. Schooner FAME is a replica of the 1812 privateer Fame that is open for public sails during the season (beginning May 13). Mahi Cruises features a variety of excursions from sunset cruises, to Sunday brunches and even a live music series in the summer. Also open seasonally, Mahi Cruises kicks off the 2017 sailing season with a sunset cruise on May 12.

To get even closer to the ocean and the creatures that live there, walk down Blaney Street and sail with Sea Shuttle aboard the Catamaran Endeavor. While out on the water, touch live sea creatures and learn about their habitats in Sea Shuttle’s onboard aquarium. Additionally Sea Shuttle offers optional pickups and drop-offs at Misery Island, and runs on a seasonal basis beginning May 13.

Maritime fans may also access Bakers Island through a boat tour with Essex Heritage run seasonally beginning in June. While there guests may view the exterior of Bakers Island Lighthouse, which is an 1820 reconstruction built in place of the original 1791 light station. Essex Heritage also offers exclusive overnight stays at the lighthouse for members only. For more information on overnights and other member events visit EssexHeritage.org.

More inland from many of Salem’s maritime attractions is the Peabody Essex Museum, which was founded by sea captains in 1799. Today, the museum is the oldest continually operated museum in the country, and features pieces of art brought to Salem by merchants who have travelled all over the world. Additionally, the Museum’s latest exhibition Ocean Liners: Glamour, Speed, and Style will be open from May 20 to October 9.

Tours

To learn more about Salem’s maritime history, take to the water with Mahi Cruises for a narrated sightseeing tour. Consider coming back during leaf peeping season and embark on Mahi’s lighthouse and foliage cruise in the fall. For a taste of Salem’s past on land, learn about the spice trade during a Salem Food Tour, which includes information on maritime history and tastings at local shops and restaurants.

Restaurants

Dine by the water in Pickering Wharf, with restaurants that are sure to please the tastes of any maritime fan. Take in views of the harbor at Sea Level Oyster Bar & Kitchen, Finz Seafood & Grill, or Victoria Station & Vic’s Boathouse. For a casual dining experience just a few more steps from the harbor, kick back at Brodie’s Seaport, Longboards Restaurant & Bar, and the Regatta Pub at the Salem Waterfront Hotel & Suites.

Shopping

For the ultimate maritime shopping experience, don’t miss some of the most nautical shops in Pickering Wharf. Joe’s Fresh Fish Prints includes handmade Gyotaku fish prints created with locally caught fish, and the shop even hosts classes for guests to create their own unique prints.

A different kind of maritime shop may be found at Ocean Chic Boutique, which features a refreshing waterbar and popular beachy clothing brands like Vineyard Vines and unique local favorites. Ocean Chic has also recently introduced a men’s collection available both in-store and online.

While in Pickering Wharf, guests may purchase scrimshaw gifts from RJ Coins and Jewelry for unique scrimshaw gifts along with fashion jewelry, rare coins, and more.

Back at the Salem National Maritime Site, plan on visiting Waite and Peirce to shop authentic and exotic goods specially crafted based on Salem’s spice trade history. The shop is home to reproduction historical goods, and locally made maritime themed goods like Waite and Peirce’s exclusive clothing line and tote bags from Sea Bags of Maine constructed out of recycled sails.

Five Remarkable Women of Salem

March is Women’s History Month, and we’re celebrating the women who have contributed to Salem’s history over the years.  This year, 2017, we live in a Salem that has a woman at the helm, Mayor Kim Driscoll; a woman in the State House, Senator Joan Lovely; a woman as the head of the Salem school district, Superintendent Margarita Ruiz; the first woman Chief of Police, Chief Mary Butler; and President Patricia Meservey is leading Salem State University into the future.  Salem is a community that nurtures and encourages strong women.

It is only fitting, as we make history going forward, that we acknowledge and celebrate the women in Salem’s past. This weekend, there will be programs at the House of the Seven Gables, Phillips House Museum, and more.

Five remarkable women have already been named here, and they are the women who are actively building Salem’s future.  Here are four women in Salem’s history whose stories we tell often:

Mary Spencer created the Gibralter, believed to be America’s first commercially produced candy, which is still sold at Ye Olde Pepper Companie.

Caroline Emmerton purchased the House of the Seven Gables, turned it into a museum, and use the profits from the museum to fund her Settlement House, which provided training for immigrant girls, boys, and adults.

Elizabeth Peabody opened the first Kindergarten in America.

Bessie Phillips establish the Stephen Philips Memorial Trust House as a museum to be enjoyed by all, which today is part of Historic New England and the only home on Chestnut Street that is open to the public.

The thirteen innocent women who were hanged during the Salem Witch Trials, accused of practicing witchcraft, are perhaps the inspiration for many of the bright and strong women who have led Salem ever since. We remember Bridget Bishop, Martha Carrier, Martha Corey, Mary Easty, Sarah Good, Dorcas Hoar, Elizabeth Howe, Susannah Martin, Rebecca Nurse, Alice Parker, Mary Parker, Ann Pudeator, Margaret Scott, and Sarah Wildes.

For more information on the historic women of Salem, explore the Salem Women’s History Trail.

10th Annual Salem Film Fest

Salem Film Fest is one of the largest documentary film festivals in New England, and it has been featuring exceptional works of film for the past ten years. This year’s event will showcase over fifty documentaries and shorts between March 2-9.

Films are chosen to be a part of Salem Film Fest based on their technical and artistic grandeur and their abilities to incite new interests and responses from the audience. Additionally, two out of three filmmakers involved in producing the works shown during Salem Film Fest attend related events and speaking engagements throughout the week.

Salem Film Fest begins tomorrow evening with the event’s opening gala at the Hawthorne Hotel. The gala will celebrate the accomplishments of Salem Film Fest in New England, and honor David Fanning, Founder and Executive Producer at Large of FRONTLINE. David will be in attendance to receive the Salem Film Fest Storyteller Award.

Proceeds from the opening gala will be used to support Salem Film Fest, an organization which is maintained entirely by volunteers who have passions for documentary filmmaking.

This year’s Film Fest will present a variety of topics. From After Spring, which follows two families as they search for a permanent home from their temporary stay at a refugee camp in Jordan, to First Lady of the Revolution, which portrays the fascinating life of Henrietta Boggs, the Alabama native who eventually becomes First Lady of Costa Rica. The complete schedule of films and events may be viewed at SalemFilmFest.com/2017/Schedule.

Films will be shown at the Morse Auditorium at the Peabody Essex Museum, CinemaSalem, and the Salem Regional Visitors Center. Tickets are $11-13 per film, and may be purchased online in advance through the Salem Film Fest website.

In addition to the films, Salem Film Fest includes film after parties, lectures, five-minute student film contests, and live music. Complete event schedules for Salem Film Fest are available online at SalemFilmFest.com.

Celebrate National Margarita Day in Salem, MA

Looking to celebrate #NationalMargaritaDay in Salem, Massachusetts? Luckily there are plenty of spots around the city serving cool, refreshing margaritas all-year-round.

Classics
For classic margaritas by the waterfront, look no further than Pickering Wharf where The Regatta Pub at the Salem Waterfront Hotel and Suites serves up a Frozen Blue Margarita made with Jose Cuervo, Blue Curacao, fresh lime and blueberries. For another blueberry option, walk just around the corner from the hotel to Sea Level Oyster Bar & Kitchen to try the Blueberry Mistletoe Margarita, a mix of Agavales Tequila, Triple Sec, lime juice, blueberries, basil, simple syrup, and topped with a splash of 888 Blueberry Vodka.

In search of raspberry instead? Try Brodie’s Seaport’s Raspberry Margarita with Cuervo Silver Tequila, Combier Orange Liqueur, agave syrup, raspberry purée, a splash of cranberry, fresh lime juice & sour.

Wicked Margarita, from the Hawthorne Hotel

Prefer citrus to berries? Victoria Station & Vic’s Boathouse have you covered with the Blood Orange Margarita, a tasty mix of Olmeca Altos Tequila, Triple Sec, Blood Orange Juice and fresh lime juice. Howling Wolf Taqueria on the corner of Lafayette and Derby Streets can also help with your citrus craving. Their margarita menu includes La Chupacabra featuring 1800 Silver, Triple Sec, blood orange puree, and a house made fusion.

Also in Pickering Wharf enjoy a classic lime margarita at Longboards Restaurant and Bar, or at Victoria Station & Vic’s Boathouse with a tequila of your choice, Triple Sec, agave, lime juice, orange juice, topped with lemonade, or try Finz Seafood and Grill’s Defa Rita, made with Don Julio Silver Tequila, Cointreau, fresh watermelon, lemon, and lime juice.

Can’t decide on a flavor? Howling Wolf Taqueria has a variety of flavors to choose from including mango, strawberry, blood orange, passion fruit, peach, and pomegranate. Also on the menu is the Skinny Marg, a lower calorie take on a classic lime margarita made with Avion Silver, agave nectar, orange bitters, fresh squeezed lime juice, and topped with soda water.

For a classic margarita closer to Salem Common, try the Wicked Margarita at the Hawthorne Hotel served at both the Tavern on the Green and Nat’s restaurants. The Wicked Margarita is crafted with Pueblo Viejo Tequila 100% Agave, and other flavors of your choice, and can be served in a traditional version or a “beach ready” (light) version. For more margaritas in the downtown area, try Village Tavern in the Museum Place Mall, or Rockafellas on Washington Street.

The Ghost Eater and The Wild Gunman, from Bit Bar

Veggie-infused
For a twist on a classic margarita recipe, try a veggie infused margarita from Opus on Washington Street. Opus offers both the Spinario made with Carrot infused tequila, skinos, aperol, black pepper vodka, lemon, ginger, and the Star People with Carrot tequila, blood orange black tea aperol, grapefruit, toasted pecan bitters.

For a margarita with an extra kick, check out some of Salem’s best pepper-infused margaritas. Opus is also home to the Trance Manual which serves up the spice using Habanero Tequila, Ghost Chili Mezcal, pomegranate, Tempus Fugit Creme de Cacao, cinnamon simple, Aztec chocolate, and angostura bitters. While visiting the Hawthorne Hotel, upgrade your Wicked Margarita to a Wicked Hot Margarita with Tanteo Tequila 100% Agave Infused with Jalapeño.

For a peppery take on a margarita and some classic video games take a walk down Saint Peter Street to Bit Bar for the Ghost Eater. A spicy nod to PAC-MAN, this drink is made with Ghost Pepper-infused tequila, Triple Sec, lemon, lime, pineapple, and lemon/lime soda.

From Derby or Lafayette Street, Howling Wolf Taqueria brings the spice with the Jalepeño Margarita featuring El Jimador Reposado, Triple Sec, fresh lime, muddled jalapeno, agave, and orange bitters. Also on the menu is the Spice Mango Margarita with Don Julio Blanco, Triple Sec, mango juice, Tapatio hot sauce, and wolf fusion topped with lemon/lime soda.

Back on Pickering Wharf, Finz serves up a spicy jalepeño flavor in their Coral Reef, a mix of 1800 Silver tequila, blood orange puree, St. Elder liquer, lemon and lime juice, and muddled jalepeño.

Finished with cinnamon
If you prefer your margaritas come with a dash of cinnamon, downtown Salem has you covered. Bit Bar serves the Wild Gunman, made with Tequila, Short Path Triple Cec, cranberry juice, lemon, lime, and honey with cinnamon sugar rim. Rockafellas is home to the Spiced Cider Margarita featuring Milagro Silver Tequila, Grand Marnier, fresh lemon juice and apple cider, garnished with a cinnamon stick and a sprinkle of cinnamon

Another take on a classic margarita using cinnamon is found back at Howling Wolf Taqueria. The Apple Cinnamon Marg is made with Juarez Gold, Apple Pucker, Fireball, a splash of cranberry, and a cinnamon rim.

Alternating drinks between water and alcohol is always a good idea, as is snacking while tasting margaritas. Wherever you celebrate #NationalMargaritaDay in Salem, be sure to drink responsibly.

A Hot Chocolate Crawl in Salem, MA

Does the winter weather have you down? Why not warm up with a cup of hot chocolate? Thankfully Salem, Massachusetts is home to plenty of restaurants and shops that serve up traditional and unique varieties of this sweet yet soothing treat.

Classic Hot Chocolate
If you’re just looking to warm up with some chocolate on a cold winter day, and you don’t care for any extra toppings or flavors, there are plenty of restaurants around Salem that serve a plain and simple yet classic hot chocolate. Coming from the Bridge Street Area, stop in at Coffee Time Bake Shop for a warm cup of Hot Chocolate Milk, a smooth, rich, and creamy treat made fresh with Dunajski Dairy chocolate milk, and optional whipped cream.

Hot Chocolate, Tavern on the Green at the Hawthorne Hotel

Moving on to Essex Street, Gulu-Gulu Café offers hot chocolate to-go as well as table-side if you’d rather stay in and warm up. Rockafellas on Washington Street offers another comfortable, indoor setting for kicking back with hot chocolate, as does Red’s Sandwich Shop and Maria’s Sweet Somethings both located just around the corner, off of the Essex Street Pedestrian Mall. Continuing down Essex Street towards Salem Common, The Tavern on the Green inside the Hawthorne Hotel offers a cozy fireside setting in addition to hot chocolate that may be topped with whipped cream by request.

While visiting Pickering Wharf, may your way to the Salem Waterfront Hotel and Suites, where hot chocolate is served out of the Regatta Pub and occasionally in the lobby. Also in Pickering Wharf is Victoria Station and Vic’s Boathouse, which serves classic hot chocolate in a warm, waterfront restaurant.

Hot Chocolate with a Twist
For a twist on traditional hot chocolate, head back up Bridge Street to Coffee Time Bake Shop. Add some spice with Coffee Time’s Mexican Hot Chocolate, which combines traditional hot chocolate with cinnamon and cayenne pepper. While there, try the Peppermint Patty (hot chocolate with a swirl of mint syrup) or the Chocolate Covered Cherries (hot chocolate with a splash of cherry syrup).

Russell Stover Mocha Latte, Gulu-Gulu Cafe

Hot Chocolate with Coffee
For an extra dose of caffeine with your hot chocolate add some coffee to the mix at either Gulu-Gulu Café or Coffee Time Bake Shop. Gulu-Gulu Café’s extensive drink menu includes a number of chocolatey coffee treats like the Russell Stover Mocha Latte with chocolate and coconut, and the White Raspberry Latte with raspberry and white chocolate.

Back at Coffee Time, enjoy the Hot Mocha Delight, made with half House Blend Coffee and half hot chocolate with cream, sugar, whipped cream, and raspberry syrup added upon request. If a cappuccino is what you’re craving, try the Mocha Chino instead, where chocolate syrup is mixed right in with the espresso which is then topped with cocoa powder.

Chocolate Raspberry Tea, Jolie Tea Company

Hot Chocolate for Tea Lovers
If you prefer tea to coffee but are still in the mood for some hot chocolate, look no further than Jolie Tea Company on Essex Street. For a minty tea excursion try the Chocolate Mint tea: Sri Lankan black tea, mint chocolate essence. A take on classic citrus scented tea, the Nina’s Hepburn Blend mixes Sri Lankan black tea, orange peels, chocolate, cream and orange flavors. While in the shop be sure to try the Chocolate Raspberry tea, a decadent blend of black tea, dark chocolate curls, and raspberry pieces.

21+ Hot Chocolate
A stroll back down to Pickering Wharf can lead you back to Victoria Station for their specialty spiked hot chocolate, the Peppermint Pleasure, mixed with Peppermint Schnapps and topped with whipped cream. To add other liquors to the mix, order a classic hot chocolate at any of the bars and taverns (like Gulu-Gulu Café, Rockafellas, The Tavern on the Green, or the Regatta Pub) and mix in a shot of your choice.

Hot Chocolate Mix
One can never have too much hot chocolate on hand at home. To purchase hot chocolate mix to enjoy during your next staycation be sure to visit Milk and Honey Green Grocer on Church Street, which also sells farm fresh and locally produced groceries. If you’re shopping for even more chocolatey treats, head over to Front Street to Maria’s Sweet Somethings, where you can purchase hot chocolate mix along with other delicious treats like candies and cupcakes.

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