Category Archives: Videos

Film: My Daughter Liv and Max Getting Married

This beautiful film was sent to me by one of my dearest friends, Claudia, the filmmaker’s Mom. Her daughter Magdalena is currently studying film and poetry at Hampshire College in Amherst. She is very interested in recycled images and has transferred many of the family’s old super 8’s. Magda would have to speak about her intention but her Mom wonders if it was from her perspective of looking up at the “big kids.” She loved to toddle after Olivia! The music is from her band with her friend Cody; they are called Stolen Jars. Magda wrote many lyrics for the album and sings on many tracks. One piece was used in an iPad commercial this summer. Thank you Claudia and Magda for Sharing!

Beautiful Film Magdalena!

My note: That’s my daughter Liv “getting married.” I think this is film footage from one of our many friend and family wonderful get-togethers on Martha’s Vineyard, at the funnest and most welcoming home of Rosemary, who is the Mom of our other best friend, Donna.

Happy Halloween!

A Seagrass Fantasy for your Halloween enjoyment!

Filmed at Brace Cove during Hurricane Sandy, October 29, 2012. Created for Good Morning Gloucester. Music composed by Camille Saint-Saëns ~ Carnival of the Animals.

Video: Gloucester’s First Wind Turbine Transported Through the Inner Harbor

Filmed on October 15th, 2012. I began filming the barge carrying Gloucester’s first wind turbine at daybreak, from Niles Beach, as as it was being prepared for transport through the inner harbor. Leaving Niles, I jumped in my car and raced over to Rocky Neck to catch the barge as it was rounding the Paint Factory jetty. The barge moved slowly and majestically through the harbor, dwarfing the wooden clapboard homes and working waterfront buildings. The sky was mostly overcast, and when the sun shone briefly, the metal siding of the tugboat Orion and the steely gray cylinders shimmered in the early morning light.

I then zoomed back to my car and drove to the Jodrey Fish Pier, which was a great vantage point to film as the barge was approaching it’s destination, the Cruiseport launching site.

At the State Pier, many people were photographing and marveling at the enormity of the wind turbine. The largest turbine section purportedly weighs over a million pounds. Shree Delorenzo, co-owner of Cruiseport, reports that she had to engage a structural engineer to ensure that her dock could withstand the weight of the turbine, along with the two cranes, and the counter weights.

The London Symphony Orchestra performing Beethoven’s Symphony No. 1 in C Major, Opus 21.

Created for Good Morning Gloucester

Special thanks to Joey Ciaramitaro, Mayor Carolyn Kirk, Sheree Delorenzo of Cruiseport, and Mark Baldwin, Baldwin Crane.

The Velvet Underground

This is definitely not what Lou Reed, John Cale, Angus MacLise, Sterling Morrison, and  Michael Leigh had in mind…

The release of the album Transformer was a seminal moment in our cultural history. The first video features David Bowie and Lou Reed with interesting interviews (with the Little Joe and Holly of the song’s fame), film clips, and photographs of the early days. The video ends abruptly, in mid-sentence.

An oft quoted statement attributed to Brian Eno is, “The first Velvet Underground album only sold 10,000 copies, but everyone who bought it formed a band.”

Lou Reed, John Cale, Angus MacLise, and Sterling Morrison were the four original members of the Velvet Underground. Michael Leigh wrote the pulp paperback The Velvet Underground, from which the band took its name. The book The Velvet Underground is about the sexual subculture of the early 1960s.

Beauty in Gloucester

I loved this Macy Gray song from the moment I first heard it. The lyrics are full of hope. I found the song  to be perfect for creating a montage of my favorite clips, filmed in and around Gloucester over the course of the past month. The footage is from works-in-progress butterfly films, 2012 Greasy Pole shorts, and random footage from a family picnic. The film showcases just some of the natural beauty found in Gloucester, from sunrise til sunset. Is it too crazy–butterflies and Greasy Pole Walkers–you tell me because I see beauty in everyone and everything.

Filmed at Niles Beach, Pavilion Beach, Good Harbor Beach, Eastern Point, Brace Cove, Gloucester Harbor Walk, and Plum Street. Created for Good Morning Gloucester. Dedicated to Joe Ciaramitaro and his beautiful family and to our beloved Gloucester community.

Thank you Ciaramitaros for your help with my Monarch film!

Thank you to my darling daughter Liv; as Craig said, “a trifecta–beautiful, smart, and funny!”

Beauty in the World Sung by Macy Gray

Featuring:
Liv
Eloise Ciaramitaro
Madeline Ciaramitaro
Joe Ciaramitaro
Stew McGillivray
Ross Carlson
2012 Sunday Greasy Pole Walkers

“Beauty in the World” is by American singer Macy Gray from her album The Sellout, which is Gray’s fifth album and first since her under-performing 2007 album, BigThe Selllout is her return to musical form after almost conforming when her last album didn’t take off. “I thought after Big flopped maybe I should do what everyone else was doing,” she said. “Go out and hire the hottest producers, the best writers, get real skinny. But none of those people called me back.”

The song was inspired by hearing her daughter’s laughter on a down day. “I didn’t even know what she was laughing at. I thought ‘at least she’s happy.’ And I felt at least I hadn’t failed there, because my daughter’s happy.” -wiki

The Greasy Pole Walk is a competition that takes place over a three day period and is an integral part of the Saint Peter’s Fiesta. The Greasy Pole Walk and Greasy Pole Walkers are unique to Gloucester, Massachusetts.

Interview with Lyda Kuth, Director of Love and Other Anxieties

Love and Other Anxieties had it’s Gloucester premier at the Cape Ann Community Cinema on Monday night. I loved the film–hearfelt, poignant, and funny.

Kent, Lily, and Lyda

Kim Smith: We’ve been friends now for at least ten years, when I helped you with the interior design of your home.

Lyda Kuth: I had heard about you—you had been in the film business early on as a set designer, and then you turned interior designer. As soon as we met, I felt we had a shared sensibility, which made working together such a pleasure.  I remember you encouraging me to use a fabric for a couch that I was afraid would be too “busy” for my taste.  But you encouraged me to be bold, and you were absolutely right.

KS: When I saw Love and Other Anxieties in Somerville, I thought it was so beautiful and heartfelt. You speak about your marriage with Kent in such an open way. Everybody who is married asks the kind of questions you ask. It’s a story that everyone can relate to, certainly anyone who is married or in a long-term relationship.

LK: The film is intended to be provocative, and perhaps allow people to voice some things that don’t often get voiced.

KS: I love that your film has examined marriage so intently, by examining yourself, but in such a way that feels universal.  One of these themes is wondering what life will be like after the kids leave home. Is anticipating the empty nest part of why you made Love and Other Anxieties?

LK: Yes, but what’s funny about that, this was largely unconscious at the outset. Over the course of making the film, which took five years from start to finish, it became blatantly obvious. I realize that one of  the things I hope audience members take home is that there is a “second life” that starts to happen after your kids leave home, and it can be equally as rich.

KS: Seeing your daughter Lily on screen, getting ready for prom, reminded me so much of what it felt like for me, when my daughter Olivia was a senior and I was telling her how wonderful college would be but thinking, “Oh my god, she’s leaving and what will our family unit feel like with one is person missing?  We’ll never be a whole family again.”

LK: Did any of your anxieties about this turn out to be true?

KS: I haven’t told this to many people, but at the same time that Olivia left for college, there was a massive Monarch migration through Gloucester– something that only happens every ten to twelve years. I was amazingly transported out of myself and began writing about and  photographing the butterflies, which then led to my learning how to film as well.

LK: Isn’t it interesting how the title of your book, “Oh Garden of Fresh Possibilities!” alludes to fresh beginnings and reflects what lay behind the creative work we each took on, in one way or another? I wasn’t consciously aware that the imminent departure of my only child was motivating me.  And yet some part of myself was preparing me for this transition.  It’s reassuring to know there is something at work, mapping the next step, at a deeper level than my “ruminations,” which are generally circular in nature!

KM:  The other aspect of your life, which also finds its way into your film, is your long time role as director of the LEF Foundation, based in Cambridge.  When we met, you had already been introduced to Gloucester and the Cape Ann community through having supported artists including Henry Ferrini and Dana Salvo.

LK: Yes, and what stands out for me is having the photographer Dana Salvo introduce me to the wonderful, rich tradition of the Feast of St. Jospeh, and being invited into people’s homes to see their alters and to be part of their tradition. I’ll never forget it.

KS: Yes, it is an extraordinary experience.  And Henry Ferrini’s father was the poet laureate of Gloucester; and now Henry, in addition to making films–which is what LEF supported–has co-founded something right in my neighborhood, the Gloucester Writers Center.

KS: Do you foresee having chatting time after the screening at Cape Ann Community Cinema?

LK: Absolutely. The Cape Ann Cinema is just the right kind of place to screen my film– an intimate and somewhat informal setting that allows for conversation.  I’m really looking forward to it!

Tickets include dinner and a screening of the movie with director Lyda Kuth.  Love and Other Anxieties at the Cape Ann Community Cinema on Monday July 23, at 7:30 pm, 21 Main Street, Gloucester.

 

WCVB Channel 5 Chronicle Gloucester Episode

WCVB Channel 5 Chronicle recently aired an episode featuring Gloucester. This is in and of itself was terrific; they also borrowed my footage from my Greasy Pole Sunday film that I created for Good Morning Gloucester.
Special thanks are owed my friend Joey Ciaramitaro for making his stellar community blog Good Morning Gloucester the go to place for people like Maggie Harper, the producer of Chronicle, to discover more about what makes the heart of our community beat. During the entire week of Fiesta, then quickly followed by Independence Day events, GMG covered all, posting countless feature stories, schedule of events, photos, and videos.

Thank you Joey C for all you do for our fair city!


Willowdale Estate Peacock

I never know what interesting species I am going to encounter when at Willowdale– usually tending to find more of the native variety–

From wiki: Indian Peafowl, Pavo cristatus, is a resident breeder in South Asia. The peacock is designated as the national bird of India and the provincial bird of the Punjab. The term peafowl can refer to the two species of bird in the genus Pavo of the pheasant family, Phasianidae. Peafowl are best known for the male’s extravagant tail, which it displays as part of courtship. The male is called a peacock, and the female a peahen. The female peafowl is brown or toned grey and brown.

Come join us tomorrow evening in the garden at Willowdale.

The Eastern Carpenter Bee

3 minute video featuring the Eastern Carpenter Bee. The music is the opening movement of Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring, performed by the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

The Eastern Carpenter Bee (Xylocopa virginica) is an important pollinator for many open-faced spring flowers including the blossoms of fruiting trees—crabapple, apple, pear, peach, plum, and wild cherry—as well as holly and brambles. X. virginica has an especially bad reputation with blueberry growers because they have strong mouthparts (capable of boring into wood), which will easily tear flowers with a deep corolla—blueberries and azaleas, for example. In the video you can see the bee probing into the sides of, and in some instances tearing, the petals to gather nectar from the blossoming Japanese Andromeda (Pieris japonica). The damage done to wood is usually minimal and cosmetic.

Carpenter Bees are regularly mistaken for bumblebees. Their shiny black abdomen most easily distinguishes them. Male and female carpenter bees can easily be differentiated at a glance. The male has a patch of yellowish-white cuticle at the top its head; the females face is entirely black.

Male Eastern Carpenter Bees are aggressively territorial. They will fly at you noisily and vigorously when in their territory, but it is all just show—they are incapable of stinging!

Joey Ciaramitaro Harbor Walk Video

Video Walking Tour of Gloucester Harbor Walk with Good Morning Gloucester creator Joey Ciaramitaro

Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Trailer

Dear Friends,

You’ve heard me talking about my butterfly documentary (for Months now!). I began filming the black swallowtails last July and am only now close to premiering my film.  I am so excited to share this project with you and hope you enjoy the trailer.

My daughter Liv and our dear friend Kathleen Adams collaborated on a beautiful rendition of “Simple Gifts.” The music in the background is an improv interlude from their recording session.

Coming soon: Documentary about the Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly, from egg, to caterpillar, to chryrsalis, to adult. Filmed in a garden and along the seashore, Gloucester, Massachusetts. Featuring the black swallowtail butterfly, wildflowers, pollinators, the sun, the garden, and more.

Bikini & Speedo Dodgeball Tournament

My friend Joey from Good Morning Gloucester blog invited me to film the Bikini Speedo Dodgeball Tournament fundraiser for Next Step.org. The event was a great success and super fun day, and as Joey says, “A Total Group Effort by the players, the sponsors, Frankie Gwynne, Rebecca Linquata, Ryan Cox, Noah, Brad, Matty K, Next Step, the fans, the media, photographers, and film makers!” Much more about the event can be found at GMG.

Next Step’s  programs provide in-person support, education and resources for young people coping with serious illness. Filmed at the Farm Bar & Grille, Essex, March 4, 2012.

Round Robin Redbreast Snowy Day Video

Round Robin Red Breast

What’s that you say? A flock of robins, in winter?

Yes, yes! Sweetly singing liquid notes. A flock in my garden!

What does a hungry round robin find to eat in a winter garden?

Red, red winterberries and holly, rime-sweetend crabapples, and orchard fruits.

And how does a winter robin keep warm?

Why, blanketed together with air-puffed fluffed feathers.

How long will they stay, how long can they last in the frost?

Only as there are fruits on the bough and berries on the bush.

Round robin red breast, silhouette in bare limb,

Calling away winter, cheer, cheerio, and cheer-up!

Each year we are visited by a breathtakingly beautiful migrant flock of American Robins. This year they arrived on leap day, many weeks later than is typical. There wasn’t much to eat as the Mocking Birds and Catbirds have eaten nearly all the berries on the Dragon Lady hollies. Fortunately, the winterberry had held its fruit. Unfortunately, the aggressive and pesky European Starlings were competing for what little fruit remained.

The following was originally posted December 2010 ~

The widely distributed and beloved American Robin (Turdus migratorius) hardly needs an introduction. The American Robin is the largest member of the thrush family—thrushes are known for their liquid birdsongs and the robin is no exception. Their unmistakable presence is made known when, by early spring, the flocks have dispersed and we see individual robins strutting about the landscape with fat worms dangling. Unmistakable, too, is the male’s beautiful birdsongs, signaling to competing males to establish their territory, as well as to entice prospective females.Read more about the American Robin including suggestions of native plants that provide nourishment for resident and nomad.

The Hidden Beauty of Pollination

“Beauty and seduction, I believe, is nature’s tool for survival, because we will protect what we fall in love with.” –Louie Schwartzberg

Friends who are aware of my butterfly and nature film projects send me the most exquisite images and links to films and videos. Thank you Emily for sharing The Hidden Beauty of Pollination, created by Louis Schwartzberg, award winning photogragher and cinemetagrapher, who has been filming time-lapse flowers and pollinators for over thirty years. Once on youtube, click the icon to see the full screen version, which is without a doubt the best way to view this extraordinary short film (only about 7 minutes in length). The second link leads to a brief talk given by Schwartzberg, also very well worth seeing.

Louie Schwartzberg: The Hidden Beauty of Pollination

The second sentence in Schwartzberg’s quote reminded me of a quote from Baba Dioum, the noted Senegalese poet, “In the end we will conserve only what we will love. We will love only what we understand. We will understand only what we are taught.”

Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly

Coming Soon: Life Story of the Black Swallowtail Butterfly tells the story of the ubiquitous and stunning Black Swallowtail butterfly.

Black Swallowtail Butterfly

My new documentary film captures the beauty and mystery of the Black Swallowtail, through all its life stages, and in it’s surrounding habitats. I think you will be amazed and captivated by this garden-variety and seemingly ordinary, extraordinary butterfly!

From Egg to Caterpillar to Chrysalis to Adult

Black Swallowtail Eggs

 Black Swallowtail Caterpillar Everting Osmeterium

Black Swallowtail Emerging from Chrysalis

Newly Emerged Black Swallowtail Butterfly

Male Black Swallowtail Butterfly Nectaring at Fennel

Female Black Swallowtail Butterfly

One of several preferred Black Swallowtail habitats—Gloucester’s sandy wildflower meadow at Good Harbor Beach. The milkweed provides nectar for swallowtails on the wing and Queen Anne’s Lace is a food plant of the Black Swallowtail caterpillars.

Antennae for Design ~ Three Outstanding Films Not to be Missed

Uggie

We were again transported to another time and place—three fabulous and current films, in three weekends. Our wonderfully transportive film nights began with My Week with Marilyn, which takes place in 1956 and was shot in and around the outskirts of London,The Descendants, filmed in present day Honolulu, and last night we saw The Artist, which takes place in Hollywood, from 1927 to 1932. The Artist is a comedy and drama about George Valentin (Jean Dejardin), a silent film star, and Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo), a rising “talkie” star, who meet just as the silent film industry is collapsing. The film is partially silent and filmed to look like a black and white silent film. The costumes are to die for, the interior set designs are predominately Hollywood Regency, and the acting charming and sweet and utterly engaging. Uggie, the terrier, will steal your heart.

From an interview with Michael Hazavanicius, director and writer of The Artist, “I had many deep motivations for wanting to make a silent film. As a member of the audience, I absolutely love the way stories are told to me in a silent movie. It’s not a cerebral response. It’s more a child-like response. Because there’s no spoken language, the way the story engages your heart is special. It’s hypnotic, sensual, not at all cerebral, and I love that sensation as an audience member. My motivations as a director were much more selfish. For me, it was a great experience. It’s what cinema is about, in my opinion. I’m telling a story with images and music. With images, you have the actors, you have the sets, you have the costumes, the lights, everything, and that’s how you’re telling the story. You don’t need words for that. It’s the ultimate experience for a director to make a silent movie. I really wanted to try to do it.”   Link to the full interview with Hazavanicius. 

Jean Dujardin and Uggie 

Techno notes for Joey and Marty: The Artist was made in the 1.33:1 screen ratio commonly used in the silent film era. Though presented in black-and-white, it was shot in color. All the technical details, including lenses, lighting and camera moves, were calibrated to get the look just right. To recreate the slightly sped-up look of 1920s silent films, the film was shot at a slightly lower frame rate of 22 fps as opposed to the standard 24 fps. Courtesy wiki.

Images courtesy Google search.

Aftermath

Isn’t Niles Pond gorgeous?  I posted the photo below on Good Morning Gloucester blog on Sunday; the pond looks especially pristine and sparkly in the snow and ice.

The following day Good Morning Gloucester follower and Eastern Point resident Daniel D. wrote to say, “It does look beautiful, and as a Resident of Eastern Point, I love when others can share in the beauty of our neighborhood. Unfortunately, the picture for today should be all the cans, boxes, and trash left behind by these people when they finished skating that day, all glaringly standing out as the snow melts in that exact spot… Hopefully they read this comment and then quickly come and clean it up before the ice melts this week and it all sinks to the bottom of our lovely pond. I’m Just Saying….”

Hey guys—it looked as though you were having a great time, but then had to leave very suddenly—with trash, half a dozen pucks, and even a shovel left behind. Perhaps there was an emergency—whatever the case—could someone who was playing hockey at Niles on Sunday please come and clean up the mess. I picked up much, of what I could reach, but the embankment is muddy and slippery and you will need tall waders to reach the plastic bottles and shovel. Thank you for your consideration.

As Daniel D. correctly stated, all the trash is going to sink to the bottom. Many species of waterfowl dive for vegetable matter and the seeds, stems, roots, and bulbs of submerged aquatic plants. They can easily became entangled in trash. The last shot of the bird’s nest is meant to symbolize the pond’s fragile ecosystem.

Clip of the stunning Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) at 3 minutes 45 seconds.

Best Friends

Filmed at Oakes Cove, Rocky Neck, November 7, 2011. “Count on Me” by Bruno Mars, from the album Doo-Wops and Hooligans.

Oakes Cove is a small, protected cove located on the southwestern side of Rocky Neck within Gloucester’s Inner Harbor. The “best friends” were unaware they were being filmed. I loved that they were so familiar with the ledge that they knew the exact location of the perfect perch for watching the setting sun together.

Total length 6 minutes, 20 seconds

Foggy Autumn Sunrise Featuring Ring-necked Pheasant

Foggy Autumn Sunrise ~ Featuring Ring-necked Pheasant, November 9, 2011, 7 minute duration

Filmed at Good Harbor Beach on a luxuriously warm November morning. Standing in the sand dunes filming the wildflowers and rising sun I heard a noise behind me, and only several feet away. I turned to see a Ring-necked Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus). This is my first encounter with a Ring-necked Pheasant at Good Harbor Beach, but have subsequently learned they are fairly common. I was amazed to see it foraging so close to the public beach and not closer to the marsh where cover is dense. Introduced to Massachusetts in 1894, this game bird continues to thrive in both rural and metropolitan areas. The footage of dried flower heads is of Seaside Goldenrod (Solidago sempervirens). The opening and final clips show the White’s house, formerly referred to by townspeople as the ‘”Birdcage” because it was wrapped on all four sides with open porches, which have now been enclosed.

Music composed by Antonio Vivaldi: The Four Sesaons Opus 8 Autumn Allegro. Performed by the London Philharmonic Orchestra with Itzhak Perlman Violin.

From wiki: The Four Seasons (Le quattro stagioni) is a set of four violin concertos by Antonio Vivaldi. Composed in 1723, The Four Seasons is Vivaldi’s best-known work, and is among the most popular pieces of Baroque music. The texture of each concerto is varied, each resembling its respective season. For example, “Winter” is peppered with silvery pizzicato notes from the high strings, calling to mind icy rain, whereas “Summer” evokes a thunderstorm in its final movement, which is why the movement is often dubbed “Storm.”

The concertos were first published in 1725 as part of a set of twelve concerti, Vivaldi’s Op. 8, entitled Il cimento dell’armonia e dell’inventione (The Contest between Harmony and Invention). The first four concertos were designated Le quattro stagioni, each being named after a season. Each one is in three movements, with a slow movement between two faster ones. At the time of writing The Four Seasons, the modern solo form of the concerto had not yet been defined (typically a solo instrument and accompanying orchestra). Vivaldi’s original arrangement for solo violin with string quartet and basso continuo helped to define the form.

Cherry Street Gang

Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo)

I find it fascinating that the turkeys populating Cape Ann are descended from wild-trapped New York birds. By 1851, the Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) was extirpated from Massachusetts because of widespread loss of habitat and hunting. Nine unsuccessful attempts to reestablish the birds were made between 1911 and 1967. Between 1972 and 1973, 37 birds were released in Berkshire County. The bird’s range quickly expanded, establishing populations from the western to the furthest eastern regions of Massachusetts. To read more about the Wild Turkey visit the Massachusetts Audubon Breeding Bird Atlas

Greasy Pole Fall Classic Full Length Edit

As First Seen On Good Morning Gloucester

The Greasy Pole walk is a uniquely Gloucester Italian-American event that takes place every summer during the St. Peter’s Fiesta. The pole is rigged on a platform in the harbor off Pavilion Beach. The objective is to walk the heavily greased pole and capture the flag. During the fiesta three walks take place, one walk each on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and there are three winners declared. Much bravado and celebrating takes place during and after walking the greasy pole. To see Greasy Pole videos from the summer of 2011 visit Good Morning Gloucester. To read more about the Greasy Pole and Gloucester’s annual St. Peter’s Fiesta visit the St. Peter’s Fiesta website.

This past autumn the platform rigged in the harbor that supports the pole was damaged first by Hurricane Irene, and then destroyed by a subsequent ‘noreaster. Roughly eighty thousand dollars is needed to reconstruct the platform. The Greasy Pole Fall Classic fundraiser, from where the video footage was shot, was held at the local football stadium, and is a one time only re-creation of the annual event that takes place in the harbor. Gloucester’s St. Peter’s Fiesta is attended by tens of thousands and is a beautiful celebration of St. Peter, the patron saint of fishermen. The Greasy Pole is a highlight of the fiesta, and just one of many religious and celebratory events.

Donations to restore the Greasy Pole may be sent to the following address:

St. Peter’s Fiesta Committee

P.O. Box 3105

Gloucester, MA 0193

Greasy Pole Fall Classic SHORT

Greasy Pole Fall Classic Short Edit

For more information about the Greasy Pole

Greasy Pole Fall Classic Video Special

As first seen On Good Morning Gloucester. The following is the program schedule for the video special that I produced for Good Morning Gloucester, which is also airing on Cape Ann TV this week.

Program schedule for The Greasy Pole Fall Classic airing on Channel 12, Cape Ann TV:

Wednesday, November 23 at 8:00 pm

Thursday, November 24 at 1:00 am and 6:30 pm

Saturday, November 26 at 7:30 pm

My Cape Ann readers know of the Greasy Pole. For my off -island readers, the Greasy Pole walk is a uniquely Gloucester Sicilian-American event that takes place every summer during the St. Peter’s Fiesta. The pole is rigged on a platform in the harbor off Pavilion Beach. The objective is to walk the heavily greased pole and capture the flag. During the fiesta three walks take place, one walk each on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and there are three winners declared. Much bravado and celebrating takes place during and after walking the greasy pole. To see Greasy Pole videos from the summer of 2011 visit Good Morning Gloucester. To read more about the Greasy Pole and Gloucester’s annual St. Peter’s Fiesta visit the St. Peter’s Fiesta website.

This past autumn the platform rigged in the harbor that supports the pole was damaged first by Hurricane Irene, and then destroyed by a subsequent ‘noreaster. Roughly eighty thousand dollars is needed to reconstruct the platform. The Greasy Pole Fall Classic fundraiser, from where the video footage was shot, was held at the local football stadium, and is a one time only re-creation of the annual event that takes place in the harbor. Gloucester’s St. Peter’s Fiesta is attended by tens of thousands and is a beautiful celebration of St. Peter, the patron saint of fishermen. The Greasy Pole is a highlight of the fiesta, and just one of many religious and celebratory events.

Donations to restore the Greasy Pole may be sent to the following address:

St. Peter’s Fiesta Committee

P.O. Box 3105

Gloucester, MA 01930

Greasy Pole Fall Classic