It was past 4 am this morning when we voted on the Commonwealth’s Economic Development Bill, which I wrote as the House Chair of the Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.
This bill contains more than $600 million in investments in cities, towns, small business and workers. For Cape Ann specifically there’s $3 million for UMass to repair the Annisquam Marine Station and to establish a Seafood Processing Center of Excellence on Gloucester Harbor… Now at 10:00 am, I am preparing to be sworn in as your Representative.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and to work with you to move Cape Ann forward, to rebuild and grow our economy and jobs.
Representative Ann Margaret Ferrante with City Council President Steven Leblanc
The day started with a wonderful chance meet up with Gloucester students and the Grow and Abrams-Dowd family. Thanks to both families for their kindness; I so enjoyed the train ride into town with Bo, Sarah, and Jason.
We were amongst the early birds arriving on the scene and it was tremendously exciting to see the preparations underway and the crowd swelling in number throughout the morning.
The newest estimate is perhaps 175,000 attendees at an event where initially 25,000 were expected. The Boston Women’s March was one of over 600 peaceful rallies held around the world. Reportedly not a single arrest related to the march took place in Boston.
Our Representative Ann Margaret’s friendly face in the crowd.
People rallied for different reasons–for compassion and dignity towards others, equality and justice for all, for better stewardship of our environment, affordable healthcare, to protect women’s reproductive rights, for equal opportunity for the disabled–along with many other issues. The signs carried reflected all our concerns. For those who may be wondering why and to what end, I believe it is the coalescing of many movements into one and the beginning of a new world movement. Women are refusing to move backward and most assuredly, there is more to come.
First Nation’s Savannah Fox Tree stunned the crowd with her beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace, sung in both Cherokee and English.
Pastor Mariama White-Hammond from Bethel A.M.E. Church gave a compassionate sermon.
Senator Elizabeth Warren
Senator Ed Markey
Congressman Joseph Kennedy III – the pink haze on several photos is my camera’s lens trying to see through an ocean of pink pussy hats 🙂
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh
Disability Commissionr Kristen McCosh and husband John McCosh
The official program began with music and dance performances, followed by speeches given by our fiercest advocates. The march was to follow however, it was delayed by several hours because the planned route was overflowing with marchers. Participants were not just from the immediate Boston neighborhoods, but had come from all around the state. The Boston Common and streets surrounding the Common had become a sea of people. Despite the human gridlock, kindness and patience prevailed.
All photos copyright Kim Smith
Gridlock at the corner of Charles and Beacon Streets where two streams of marchers converged.
Boston’s side streets were also jammed with marchers.
We are so fortunate to have House Representative Ann Margaret Ferrante working on behalf of our region, and all of Massachusetts. Brilliant, hard working, compassionate, well respected by her colleagues, budget conscious, and just an overall kind and huge hearted person. A heartfelt thank you to Ann Margaret for all that she accomplishes for our community. Happiest of birthdays to Ann!
Thank you to our beautiful Gloucester community for participating in Viva San Pietro! Thank you to the Greasy Pole Walkers for interviews given during the Sunday rally and especially to Nicky Avelis for help coordinating. A huge thanks to Joe DaSilva for the suggestion to listen to Mike Forgette’s music for the film’s soundtrack and for help in contacting Mike. A tremendous thank you goes to Mike Forgette for granting permission to use his song “Whats the Difference” (link to hear more of Mike Forgette Music).
Viva San Pietro! opens with Joe Novello preparing Gloucester’s Saint Peter’s Square for the formal opening ceremony, to which he is also the master of ceremonies. Highlights from Friday afternoon’s sporting events are followed by the procession of Saint Peter, the patron saint of fishermen, around the American Legion Building (Gloucester’s first City Hall), with the parade ending in a fanfare of confetti and cheers. Mayor Sefatia Romeo Thekan takes to the stage and provides some history about the origins of the Fiesta. Senator Tarr and all officials give praise to the committee for their tireless dedication. Representative Ann Margaret Ferrante and City Councilor Steven LeBlanc rally the crowd with the traditional call and response that is heard throughout the city in the coming days, and Father Jim Achadinha gives his blessing.
Saturday’s Greasy Pole competition is featured with highlights from Joe DaSilva’s winning walk. Due to foul weather, Sunday’s events take place on Monday. The Sunday Greasy Pole Walkers in their zany and colorful costumes tell of past walks and wins at the rally held at the home of Sunday Walker Joe Sanfillipo. After processing through downtown with stops along the way at the Gloucester House Restaurant, House of Mitch, and Saint Peter’s Club, the Walkers head over to Beach Court. Because Sunday’s events had been postponed to Monday and the stage broken down on schedule, the statue of Saint Peter was temporarily moved to Beach Court. After blessings and prayers, the revelers headed back to Saint Peter’s Square to board the ferry to the Greasy Pole.
The men’s seine boat competition does not disappoint, with Lock and Load taking the trophy, followed by an outstanding flag capture by Jake Wagner.
The Walkers hoist Jake upon their shoulders and carry him to the Greasy Pole Hall of Fame Wall. Then it’s back to Beach Court where the closing ceremony is held. Congratulatory speeches are given by the team captains, with much cheering and accolades for all. After the award ceremony, the statue of Saint Peter is processed through the Fort amidst much merriment, joyful singing, and “Me chi samiou tutti mutti? Viva San Pietro!,” which roughly translated means: Are you all mute? (or Why are you not shouting?)—long live Saint Peter!
You’ll see all three Greasy Pole winners Joe DaSilva, Lenny Taormina, and Jake Wagner, Mayor Sefatia Romeo Thekan, House Representative Ann Margaret Ferrante, State Senator Bruce Tarr, Sunday Greasy Pole Walker and City Councilor Steven LeBlanc, Peter Black Frontiero, Nicky Avelis, Joe Sanfilippo, Paul Nicastro, Kyle Barry, Mark Allen, Crazy Hat Ladies, sisters Robyn and Amy Clayton, and many, many more. Viva San Pietro!