Holidays are spent in Danvers

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Wow, things have happened since we walked around the square two weeks ago. I know the biggest concerns have been the hazing of hockey players in the locker rooms at Danvers High School and the swastikas in the bathrooms at Holten Richmond Middle School.

I will not address these issues here. There has been a great deal of writing on both subjects. To say that I am disappointed would be an understatement!

Yes, I am surprised. Yes, I am disappointed. And yes, I am also frustrated that with all the attempts we make to bring peace to the world, our focus has to be here in our schools.

Hopefully, with all of the enlightening things that are in the pipeline, these kind of egregious events will no longer appear in our community.

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And now to all the fun and happy things that recently happened in Danvers.

It has certainly been a very busy weekend. If you were looking for details on what the Danvers Garden Club’s annual greens sale typically looks like in the Shed at Endicott Park, you can thank COVID for this one.

Myrna the fear

The sale of greens must have turned into pre-ordered items such as kissing balls which were picked up at the Danvers Polish Club. Of course, the annual Senior Center Christmas Fair had to be canceled as well, which is so sad. No one was able to browse the new and valuable items, I know there was nothing last year and believe the fair before had closed due to COVID.

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And now we have to think about Omicron.

The good thing is that those who received the Pfizer, Moderna, or Johnson and Johnson vaccine plus the bonus booster could possibly feel lousy for a day or two, but they will survive. If Elsa, like in the movie “Frozen”, can survive, so can we. What a beautiful motto! Hopefully young people will understand the analogy.

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The day after Thanksgiving was, as usual, the Downtown Holiday Festival.

I have to admit, I haven’t really been outside for too long; it was cold. But I did manage to get into some of our special places that appear every year.

I finally made it to Curran’s where there were a lot of people working in several different rooms and in the greenhouse creating all the beautiful arrangements, kissing balls and gorgeous tableware all designed to say “Welcome”.

Having fun at the library, Makayla Manto, downstairs, and Ava Monto, upstairs, Larissa and Giovanna Peacock can't wait to go play.

And that goes for me too. I am embarrassed to say that I have finally arrived at Curran’s to thank the father-son duo of Paul and Paul Richard Danehy and also Tim for their beautiful and welcoming Hanukkah porch layout which will be there until late spring, according to the weather.

The Daneheys have been doing this for many years when they found out that I usually don’t do anything for Chanukah. In fact, I used to say that you know my house, it’s the one without decorations.

Well, that has certainly changed. Sure enough, on the morning of the first Hanukkah night, there was my blue, white, and silver arrangement. I’m embarrassed that I didn’t have the chance before Saturday to step in and thank the guys.

I also had my laugh for the day. Paul Sr. looked at his watch and said, “I should be on the golf course. This is my usual departure time “in Florida, that is to say.

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Then he went to the former East Boston Savings Bank now transformed into the Rockland Trust. Santa Claus (Bruce Symmes from Danvers who had never needed padding before) is lucky his Santa costume has a way to make the wearer still look like the merry old elf. Then for Santa and the kids it was downtown for the next part of the fun.

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During this time, no one was sitting doing nothing. There were all kinds of goodies outside the New Brothers Restaurant and Deli.

The owner, Kary Andrinopoulos, kept filling plates with things, from candies to braided cookies, to treat herself. The North Star dental office had frosted cookies for the young girls to hand out as well as water bottles and a canvas bag to carry them. There were a lot of people in front of the Sawasdee Thairestaurant where a charming young worker collected pan-roasted vegetables and served them over rice already in containers

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Since it was so cold, I sped it all the way to downtown JD Jeweler where all kinds of goodies, as usual, were gobbled up. I couldn’t wait to get home to light the Chanukah candles

Saturday night, I was using the Hanukkah menorah which is special to me. The late Fr. Gérard Dorgan, the late priest of St. Mary, gave me the menorah, which I truly cherish.

My Other Menorah is a musical that plays the Hanukkah version of “Rock of Ages”. Unfortunately, the bottom of the menorah which holds the music box lost one of its screws and could no longer stand on its own. This one is special because I originally bought it for my mom who returned it to me for the kids to enjoy.

Frankly, I thought it was a lost cause; but not Jerry Demirchian of JD Jewelers whose lovely wife Susan is also familiar with gemstones. To my surprise, Jerry fixed the menorah.

People respectively listen to the speakers at the recent Rotary Interfaith Vigil.  Listen intently, from left to right, Dr Charles Desmond, Deb Saber, David Benson and Stephanie Beilin.

I am convinced that he is a genius. You should see what he does with magnificent gemstones.

And it reminds me. Saturday, I met Rebecca, the fiancée of Michael Demirchian. Obviously, Rebecca has a really lovely engagement ring that the adorable Rebecca wears well.

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Of course, Santa Claus got off the fire truck to greet the youngsters and be part of the tree lighting. It was a treat to watch the Danvers Marching Band and Color Guard with Caitlin and her sister Molly Emery.

Grandmother Maureen Gillis, formerly Vice President of East Boston Savings Bank, now known as Rockland Trust, of which she is the Senior Vice President, couldn’t help but beam as she spoke of her beautiful granddaughters . And why not!

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Last week I attended the Hanukkah Menorah candle lighting in the library. There were a lot of people, especially children having fun under the guidance of Rabbi Yossi Lipsker.

Representative Sally Kerans was busy taking pictures, as was Ronna Thur Winer. Many of those people had attended the vigil the week before, which also included Senator Joan Lovely.

In fact, Julie Curtis, who is a member of the Democratic State Committee, was also everywhere I went. Of course, as a library advisor, she was also present at the Sunday afternoon children’s event. And what a pleasure they were having fun.

In the Gordon Room, the adults enjoyed the music of Classic Groove. They also signed up for free giveaways, just like me, and parents filled out tickets as well.

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Saturday morning, I finally arrived at the Danvers Historical Society to buy lots of tickets for the Parade of Trees raffles. Since I never heard from anyone at the Trees or the Children’s Day, I guess I didn’t win anything. Well, it was for a good cause. And the Danvers Historical Society can certainly use the money.

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I told you about things that have already happened; now I’m going to tell you about some things to come.

An exciting event will take place at the Danvers Art Association on December 11-12. ARTS-a-Glow is an arts and crafts market with food, drink, music, and plenty of activities for kids.

Check it out at www.thedanversart.org for more information.

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Several people called me to ask me what Rebel is. Since I had no idea what they were talking about, I decided to check while waiting for Santa’s Saturday.

The new owners of Rebel in Danvers Square are, left to right, Manny Janard with Nikki Maxner and Del Haight with Peter Capalbo getting Rebel ready to open after Christmas.

I wasn’t expecting a VIP visit to the place until I heard someone call me and tell me how much she loved me. At first, I had no idea who this adorable young lady in the baseball cap was. She insisted that I come to Rebel (where Esposito’s Bakery used to be) because she wanted to introduce me to the partner owners / chefs. One is Peter Palumbo, an amazing chef that I first met at Union Grill restaurant. The last place Peter was in was the Wenham Tea House with Christopher and Jason Keohane.

Peter’s partner is Manny Janard. Both men are determined to keep customers happy and give them what they really love, they told me. As soon as they open, probably around the beginning of January, we will have the opportunity to discover their eclectic cuisine that we will all love, I’m sure. And of course, he’ll be endorsed by Manny’s partner Nikki Maxner.

It seems that these two chefs will take care of their customers. When I asked my lovely friend to write down the names of the group of four, I couldn’t get over the fact that Peter’s partner was none other than Del Haight whom I met through from North Shore Seniors Services. We were both honored the same evening. And, this young lady, who looks like she’s in college, is the grandmother of adorable twins. I’m still trying to figure out how someone could rejuvenate as I get older.

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Now, I wish you lots of fun and good health as you prepare to have a Merry Christmas.


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