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Maritime Holiday Tree 2022 – Life Ring Ornaments Unite the Community

By Laura Bentley, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Owner of Newburyport.Com, Laura manages Business Development, Fundraising, the VIP Program, Blogging and the Events Calendar.
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Newburyport’s 2022 Maritime Holiday Tree strung with life ring ornaments will light up the waterfront for the season beginning December 2nd at at the annual maritime tree lighting ceremony on the Custom House Maritime Museum lawn adjacent to the Newburyport boardwalk. Visitors can arrive before the tree lighting at 5:00pm to enjoy a cup of hot chocolate, a holiday treat and purchase a decorated life ring or a life ring to decorate yourself. Free small life rings will be available for kids to decorate while supplies last. The tree lighting will take place at 5:30 pm, at which time the Newburyport Choral Society, will lead everyone in caroling at this wonderful community event. The Choral Society will sing for approximately 15 – 20 minutes but the event will continue until 6:30 pm. Although the tree lighting is early in December, this stunning tree is kept up through the holidays for all to enjoy and life rings can be purchased and added to the Maritime Tree through 12/21/22.

Unlike the coastal town’s traditional evergreen, the Custom House Maritime Holiday Tree features a nautical theme in keeping with the rich history of our port. The “tree” itself will be made of rope riggings resembling a tall ship and the decorative ornaments are replica boating life rings of various sizes. Equally as unique as the tree design is that the ornaments are all individually decorated by local residences and businesses. The idea for the Maritime Holiday Tree was developed in 2020 as a way to connect the community during a time when many people were experiencing isolation and or loss. The Maritime Tree provided hope and the start of what is certain to be, a long term Newburyport holiday tradition and an important ongoing fundraiser helping to support the Custom House. Sponsorships from local businesses help fund this fun the Maritime Tree in addition to the purchase of life rings. Thank you to Newburyport Bank, the Presenting Sponsor as well as the many other local businesses helping to support this maritime tradition.

The life rings, which will be strung on the Maritime Holiday Tree to illustrate tying our close community together, can be purchased in advance online to be picked up in person at the museum or by simply dropping into the museum gift shop during regular operating hours. While you are there, the museum gift shop is also a great place to shop local and discover unique gifts for that hard to shop for person on your list! The Custom House Maritime Museum is open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10 am – 5 pm and Sundays from 12 – 5 pm. In order to offer more flexible hours, folks are able to go to pick up life rings through Wednesday, 12/21. If you are picking up a life ring on a day that the Museum is closed, go to the back door and ring the doorbell. If you have a wreath to hang after the 21st, you are welcome to hang it on the tree.

Families, students, businesses, and nonprofits are encouraged to purchase and decorate their ornaments with anything that will sustain the weather and contribute to the festive Maritime Holiday Tree—creativity welcome!  If you would like to have your life ring ornament returned to you, make sure to write your name on the back.

Along with the tree lighting ceremony, the Custom House Maritime Museum is also host to other events during the season and the Custom House Gift Shop is a wonderful place to Shop Local for unique holiday gifts. For a full list of all holiday events and dates make sure to check our Events Calendar. Special event or not, visitors are welcome to stroll past the tree nightly through the end of December to enjoy the lights and one-of-a-kind ornaments.

 

Spanish Tall Ship Nao Santa Maria Sails into Newburyport

By Caitlin Dowling, Newburyport.com Correspondent
Caitlin is a freelance editor/writer and former news producer for CNN. As a local mom of three, her family can be found enjoying all Newburyport has to offer, from strolling downtown to biking the rail trail to swimming at the beach.
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In the Spring of 2019, crowds gathered along coastlines from Plum Island to Salisbury to watch the 200-ton Spanish tall ship, Nao Santa Maria, sail into Newburyport. The Custom House Maritime Museum docked this replica of Christopher Columbus’  flagship the Santa Maria at the city’s Waterfront Park as part of their annual Newburyport Maritime Days celebration.

Built and launched in Spain in 2018, the 92-foot Nao Santa Maria was created by the same private foundation that built El Galeón, the Spanish tall ship that visited Newburyport in 2016. The Nao Santa Maria was built to honor the 555th anniversary of Christopher Columbus sailing to America from Spain.

Visitors flocked to Newburyport, the ship’s only stop on the East Coast, to explore and tour the Nao Santo Maria while it remained docked in town for over a week. Along with public tours, the Custom House Maritime Museum also hosted special events aboard the ship like a private breakfast and a special Little Pirates themed morning for kids. For adults, the CHMM Pirates Party featuring nationally touring Jimmy Buffett tribute band, Changes in Latitudes, dancing, and rum cocktails was a huge hit and the CHMM Black Tie Gala was an elegant evening with a 12 piece big band playing the Great American Songbook, food catered by the Poynt, and a selection of Spanish wines. The Council for Aging also had a chance to climb aboard the Spanish tall ship for coffee and donuts and a cocktail hour.

In addition to all the fun onboard the Nao Santa Maria, the Custom House Maritime Museum kept the festivities going onshore with an outdoor market showcasing local businesses at the waterfront park. The Newburyport Collection featured 18 local businesses to explore, sample, and shop.

A visit to the Custom House Maritime Museum is always a must when visiting downtown Newburyport. Whether you are a tourist or local, this museum is full of information and history about the city of Newburyport and the Merrimack Valley. From displays of famous shipwrecks to the history of the Coast Guard, there is something for everyone.

If you enjoy dining and shopping in the Greater Newburyport area, you may want to consider purchasing a Newburyport VIP Card in support of the Custom House Maritime Museum. The VIP Card provides discounts at 180 Greater Newburyport restaurants and shops and is available as a Digital VIP Card in the Newburyport App or as a Physical VIP Card. Purchase one card for $25 or two for $40 and $10 of your purchase will be donated to the Custom House Maritime Museum. Physical VIP Cards are available for purchase in the museum gift shop and both Digital and Physical VIP Cards can be purchased online. VIP Cardholders receive 10% off purchases of $25 or more in the museum gift shop and 50% off museum admission.

 

Royal Treatment @ The Maritime Tea Events

By Michael Mroz, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Executive Director of the Custom House Maritime Museum, Michael oversees operations, marketing and communications for the museum.
Custom House Maritime Museum
Maritime Tea Events, Newburyport

Be treated like Lord and Lady Grantham by attending a Maritime Tea Wednesday event at the Custom House Maritime Museum. Did you enjoy the last six years of Downton Abbey? Are you feeling a bit less complete now that it is finished? Well, you only need to attend one of the Maritime Tea Wednesday events at the Custom House Maritime Museum.

The tea will be British and the fare will be scrummy, a proper tea indeed. There will also be a light presentation for your pleasure and classical music to accompany your indulgence in one of the greatest pleasures, a tea laid out for you. With historical presentations that will range from special viewings of certain antiquities to excerpts from journals kept by the incredible people of Newburyport of the eighteenth and nineteenth century, you will be transported in time as well as learn about the this great city.

The Maritime Tea Wednesday events will also be a lovely place for guest to hobnob and reacquaint themselves with one another. As the tea events are taking place inside the historic Custom House Maritime Museum, guest will also come to realize how special this building has been, and is today. Do not hesitate to reserve your place for one of the upcoming 2017 Maritime Tea Wednesday Events and relive those glorious Edwardian days with a maritime flair. Tea, Cakes and Maritime History…

January 10th, 17th & 31st – 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM 

February 14th & 28th – 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM 

March 14th & 28th – 11:30  AM – 1:30 PM 

April 11th & 25th – 11:30  AM – 1:30 PM 

Cost is $15 per person for both Members and Guests 

Custom House Maritime Museum – 25 Water Street Newburyport MA.

Reservations are necessary with limited seating – ring now 1 . 978 . 462 . 8681

The Custom Hose Maritime Museum is managed by the Newburyport Maritime Society, Inc., a 501 © (3) corporation established in 1968 to preserve, protect, interpret and celebrate our maritime heritage and its role in American history. The historic Federal Custom House in the heart of downtown Newburyport was designed by Robert Mills, architect of the Washington Monument and the U.S. Treasury Building. It was built in 1835 to serve the growing overseas trade and to collect taxes on imported goods coming into the waterfont.

The museum is open to the public year round for events and activities – from January through April every Saturday from 10am-4pm and Sunday (plus holiday Mondays) 12-4pm; and from May through December on Tuesday through Saturday from 10am-4pm and Sunday (and holiday Mondays) 12 to 4pm.

Museum admission is $7 for adults and $5 for seniors and students. Museum members, active military members and children under 6 are admitted free. For more information, visit us online at the museum website at www.thechmm.org or call 978-462-8681, or email info@thechmm.org.

Tall Ships Visit Newburyport – Experience Our Maritime History – May 24th – 29th 2017

By Laura Bentley, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Owner of Newburyport.Com, Laura manages Business Development, Fundraising, the VIP Program, Blogging and the Events Calendar.
Tall Ships, Newburyport

Thanks to the Custom House Maritime Museum, the Greater Newburyport Community and curious visitors from near and far, will once again be able to experience Newburyport’s maritime history through tours and events associated with the visit of Tall Ships:  Schooner Alabama and Schooner Adventure.  Enjoy tours and special events May 24th through May 29th.

Newburyport Maritime Days are almost here!  Mark your calendar for a couple of special times: the Tall Ships are due to arrive on Wednesday, May 24th at 10:52 AM on the high tide at the mouth of the Merrimack River.  The arrival will be marked with a parade of sails to the Newburyport waterfront and the official welcoming ceremony is scheduled for Wednesday evening from 6 – 8 PM.

General public tours will be available Thursday through Monday.  Check the Newburyport.com Events Calendar for specific inforTall Ships, Newburyportmation and days and times of special tours and events for student groups, seniors, and artists as well as a number of fun social events.  You should purchase tickets in advance for tours and special events.  If you have questions contact the Custom House at 978-462-8681.

If you are enamored by the beauty of these amazing tall ships, we highly recommend a tour of the Custom House Maritime Museum.  Newburyport is a city filled with fascinating stories of folks who navigated ships, worked on ships, built ships and those who sailed for both business and adventure on incredible journeys of exploration.  If locals weren’t somehow connected to ships, it was certain that a family member or neighbor was, and that ships had a significant impact on the lives of everyone from Newburyport.  The Custom House Maritime Museum is the ultimate destination for learning and sharing maritime history and tradition.  If you haven’t been it is a must on the bucket list, and if you have been then stop in again and discover more stories and adventures of our Newburyport founding residents.

While exploring the Tall Ships we also highly recommend a visit to the, Newburyport Collection, a group of regional hand crafters, artists, and vendors selling their wares on the green, the 27th through the 29th.  This is another great opportunity to further explore Newburyport’s maritime traditions and and history.  You will find them under the tent on the Custom House waterfront lawn.

The schooner Alabama is a living piece of America’s maritime history. Built in 1926 for the Mobile, Alabama Bar Pilots, she sTall Ships, Newburyporterved until her retirement in 1966. She is not a replica, a ship built to emulate the style of past generations, but rather a design of Thomas F. McManus, a man widely regarded as the best designer of all the Gloucester fishing schooners. Alabama’s second phase of her life began when the Coastwise Packet Company and its owner, Robert Douglas purchased and brought her to Vineyard Haven in 1967. Never fitted out as a sailing vessel by the Mobile Pilots, she was finally given this opportunity thirty years later when it was decided to put her back to work in 1994. The rebuild that was a result of this decision lasted over three years and replaced almost 90% of her original form. As with the Shenandoah, Captain Douglas gave every consideration to her construction and the result is a vessel true to the era and design of McManus. The fishing schooner was an American invention, and the Alabama represents the finest vessels from this area when ships like her were relied on to provide the country with the staple of its economy, codfish.

Tall Ships Newburyport

The Schooner Adventure was designed by the famous marine architect Thomas McManus as a “knockabout” without a bowsprit for the safety of the crew. The schooner was built in 1926, in Essex, Massachusetts, by the John F. James and Son Shipyard. She measured 121.6 feet in length, 24.5 feet in breadth, and 14 feet in depth. Her gross tonnage was 130 and her net tonnage 62. When built, Adventure was powered by a 120 horsepower engine turning a single screw in a cutout space in the rudder.

Experience Newburyport Maritime Days by touring the Tall Ships, attending amazing events, and make certain you also tour the Custom House Maritime Museum.  Whether you are local to Newburyport or just visiting for Maritime Days be sure to download the Newburyport App.  The Neburyport App is a community based loyalty program that offers folks discounts at 180 local restaurants and shops and and helps support local nonprofit organizations.  Please consider supporting the Custom House Maritime Museum with your Newburyport App purchase.  In addition to being a nonprofit partner, The Custom House Maritime Museum also provides discounts as part of the VIP Program.  Show your Newburyport App or VIP Card and receive 50% off Museum admission and 10% off gift shop purchases of $25 or more.

Painting Lessons Amongst Maritime History

By Michael Mroz, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Executive Director of the Custom House Maritime Museum, Michael oversees operations, marketing and communications for the museum.
Custom House Maritime Museum
Painting Lessons Amongst Maritime History

The Custom House Maritime Museum is very pleased to present Artist Johanne Cassia, who will be giving painting lessons four times a year, Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, here at the Custom House Maritime Museum.

Johannes style is the quintessential New England folk style. This is your chance to be given instruction by a revered painter in the very first Spring painting class, that will take place in the “Hall of Ships” within the historic Custom House Maritime Museum. Beginner and experienced artists welcome. You will be guided every step of the way, and depart with a 16” X 20’’ painting. Light refreshments will be served as well.

JOHANNE CASSIA IS AN ACCOMPLISHED, AMERICAN FOLK ARTIST.  She is one of a very limited group of artists that is painting the traditions that we want to pass forward as HEIRLOOMS OF OUR HERITAGE. Johanne is passionate about keeping the “American Dream” alive. Johanne is one of the only artists that currently re-creates actual 17th & 18th Century landscapes, seascapes and countryscapes in full scale format. As a commissioned artist, Johanne often paints EARLY HISTORICAL LOCATIONS into her work. She captures the many aspects of the development of our country that connects us all. Her work DEPICTS OUR EVOLVING HISTORY AND THE FAMILY TRADITIONS WE WANT TO SHARE. She allows people to fantasize about how things used to be. Viewers often say they want to “walk into her paintings.” JOHANNE CASSIA, M.ED., IS A LIFELONG EDUCATOR AND FACILITATES EARLY AMERICAN PAINTING LESSONS FOR ALL LEVELS OF ARTISTS. Her studio is on the second level of the barn where she creates her large scale paintings on wood. Her work is photographed in a commercial photography studio and the transferred to canvas.

AWARDS AND SPECIAL RECOGNITION –

Market Square, Valley Forge, PA, “Best Made in America Exhibitor”

Ribbon, Gallery of Master Craftsmen: PA, Juried show with national entrants.

Ribbon, 375th Ipswich Anniversary Art Show, MA, Painting Prized.

26 March – 12:30 pm to 4:00 pm

Price $75.00, which includes all material including canvas and easel

Advance Reservations Required, call 978-462-8681  -or-  email jroberts@chmm.org

 

 

Spanish Tall Ship El Galeón Visits Newburyport – May 2016

By Laura Bentley, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Owner of Newburyport.Com, Laura manages Business Development, Fundraising, the VIP Program, Blogging and the Events Calendar.
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In May of 2016, the Spanish Tall Ship El Galeón sailed into Newburyport, MA, a city rich with maritime history, thanks to the efforts of the Custom House Maritime Museum. El Galeón, accompanied by the Coast Guard, sailed up through Cape Ann and into the Merrimack River offering many spectacular viewing opportunities along the way.

Visitors and locals lined Newburyport’s waterfront to welcome El Galeón and watch the ceremonious entrance. The ASpanish Tall Ship El Galeón merican Yacht Club fired a salute to welcome the tall ship, and Rosario Fernandez, Captain of El Galeón, rang the ship’s bell to return the salute, while the crew sounded their bosun whistles from up in the ship’s sails.  Onlookers that purchased their own copper and brass bosun whistle souvenirs from the Custom House gift shop, joined in the salute from shore.

After the Spanish Tall Ship El Galeón’s arrival, there were many festivities during the Maritime Days celebration including: student toursPirate Night Costume Party, Flamenco Evening, Breakfast on a Tall Ship, and the Children’s Pirate Party!  Along with special events, visitors were welcome to purchase a general tour ticket to climb aboard and explore the tall ship throughout its stay. Whether you were local to the city or visiting from elsewhere, a stop to see El Galeón was not to be missed.

If you weren’t able to stop in why this tall ship was in town, pay a visit to the Custom House Maritime Museum to learn about some local nautical history! From displays of famous shipwrecks to the history of the Coast Guard, there is something for everyone.

If you enjoy the city’s maritime history and would like to help support the Custom House efforts, consider purchasing a Newburyport VIP Card online.  The VIP Card allows you to enjoy discounts EVERY TIME you visit 180 participating Greater Newburyport restaurants and shops and $10 of your $25 card purchase will help support the Custom House Maritime Museum.

 

 

Custom House Maritime Museum 40th Anniversary & Patrons’ Party June 27, 2015

By Michael Mroz, Newburyport.Com Correspondent
Executive Director of the Custom House Maritime Museum, Michael oversees operations, marketing and communications for the museum.
Custom House Maritime Museum
Custom House Maritime Museum, Newburyport MA

Oh what a night to dance under the stars by the waterfront and reflect on the history of the Newburyport Custom House. To commemorate the 40th Anniversary of the restoration and opening of the Custom House Maritime Museum, we are throwing a 1975 themed gala to celebrate this Robert Mills architectural gem and its unique collection or maritime and revolutionary war antiquities.  Please join us for a night of fine food, libations, music and revelry offered in true 70’s style.  Period dress is encouraged!

Tickets are $75 per person and include food catered by Phat Cats Bistro, assorted wines, ales and a sparkling wine bar.  Dance to live music provided by period band “1975” performing top 100 hits from the year. Explore the collection of the museum as you search for clues in our scavenger hunt and submit your completed form to win maritime prizes.  Bid on a wide array of items and experiences at our Silent Auction. Celebrate the revitalization of our downtown and learn about the role the museum has played in our community as you preview the museum’s 40th Anniversary exhibit that opens to the public the following day.

Tickets reservations can be made through the Custom House Maritime Museum website.

Tickets can also be reserved by calling the museum at 978-462-8681. As this event typically sells out, advanced ticket purchase is encouraged. All proceeds benefit the preservation and operation of the museum and its’ collections.

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