, Newburyport, MA

September 12, 2013

The Lookout: Longtime Newburyport educator kicks off author series

The Lookout
Ann Reily

---- — A former Newburyport teacher and administrator is returning to the city next week to kick off the Autumn Author Series at the Emma L. Andrews Library.

Colleen Tierney will discuss her new book, “The Weight of Coal and Lace: The Story of Andras and Sophie Kuchta,” on Thursday, Sept. 19. The historical novel is based on the lives of her grandfather and grandmother and their struggles living in a Pennsylvania coal town between 1904 and 1924.

Tierney was the director of curriculum for the Newburyport school system and a teacher of both special education and gifted and talented students. Now retired, she divides her time between Little Diamond Island, Maine, and Lakewood Ranch, Fla.

The author series will continue with Marina Dutzmann Kirsch on Oct. 17 and Muriel Angelil on Nov. 21.

All programs begin at 7:30 p.m. at the library, 77 Purchase St. Admission is free, and refreshments will be served. Advance sign-up is recommended.

Exploring California’s natural history

Take a virtual trip to California during a slide presentation and lecture at the Joppa Flats Education Center on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.

“Birding Yosemite, Mono Lake and Point Reyes, California” will feature images from a recent expedition led by Bill Gette, sanctuary director, and Dave Larson, science and education coordinator. Some of the animals they saw in different habitats include the California quail, green-tailed towhee, black-necked stilt, elephant seal and golden-mantled ground squirrel.

The program costs $4 for nonmembers. Registration is not required.

Joppa Flats is located at 1 Plum Island Turnpike in Newburyport. For more information, call 978-462-9998 or visit

Storytelling event to help cancer research

Five authors will share stories of local history and lore during a Pan-Mass Challenge fundraiser on Wednesday at Newburyport Brewing Co.

The event will also feature the brewery’s craft beer, paired with pizza and desserts from Anchor Stone Deck Pizza, Simply Sweet and Eat Cake! The participating writers are Frank Schaeffer, Bethany Groff, Jay Atkinson, Holly Robinson and Aine Greaney.

Tickets are $25, and all proceeds will go to the Pan-Mass Challenge, an annual bike race fundraiser for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

To reserve tickets, email They will also be available at the door, 4 New Pasture Road.

A celebration of John Greenleaf Whittier

Music, dance and poetry will celebrate John Greenleaf Whittier on Saturday, Sept. 21, at the Maudslay Arts Center in Newburyport.

The event, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., will feature author Andre Dubus III, poet Rhina Espaillat and the Exit Dance Co. along with food from David’s Tavern and a cash bar.

Tickets are $40 and can be purchased online at or by calling 978-399-1337. Money raised will support the preservation of the Whittier Home Museum in Amesbury.

The arts center is located at 95 Curzon Mill Road.

Help choose Newburyport’s best cocktails

Sample creative drinks and vote for your favorite during Sunday’s second annual Newburyport Cocktail Competition.

From 4 to 8 p.m., restaurants will offer samples from city mixologists, and a scavenger hunt will have interested participants scrambling to find certain items.

Tickets are $20 in advance at or $30 at the door of Michael’s Harborside, where attendees will check in and receive their event passes, shot glasses and maps. Tastings are including in the ticket price, with full-size drinks available for $4 each.

In addition to Michael’s, participating restaurants include Brown Sugar by the Sea, Oregano, Ten Center Street and Andiamo.

New singing group looking for members

A new vocal group is forming in Newburyport, and the first meeting is Wednesday at the Greater Newburyport Chamber of Commerce, 38R Merrimac St.

Unofficially named “Let There be Song,” the group is for anyone who wants to sing just for fun. No auditions are required.

The meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. at 38R Merrimac St. For more information, call 978-462-6680 or email

Healing market features authors

Two local authors will sign and sell their books at the next Newburyport Healing Arts and Crafts Market, scheduled for Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the First Religious Society.

Susan Paradis of Merrimac has illustrated 20 books for kids, four of which she wrote. Her stories encourage children to open up about their problems.

Elissa Al-Chokhachy of Amesbury is a hospice nurse who write books for both adults and children on healing from loss and grief.

The free event will also feature Reiki healing, intuitive readings, massage and a variety of products for sale.

The church is located at 26 Pleasant St., Newburyport. For more information, visit

Youths invited to audition for choir

Auditions for the Honors Youth Choir of Chorus North Shore will be held Thursday, Sept. 19, in Ipswich.

The choir is open to all youths ages 10 through high school and is tuition-free. Members must attend scheduled rehearsals and concerts.

Auditions start at 3:30 p.m. at Ascension Memorial Church, 31 County St., and will be followed by the first rehearsal of the season.

For more information, call 978-356-4713 or 978-468-2841 or email

Event offers cooking tips and tricks

A cooking demonstration and lesson will be held Thursday, Sept. 19, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Jewett Farms + Co. in Newburyport.

Local chef Sean Ryan will share his recipe for pasta Bolognese, made with ingredients from Newbury’s Tendercrop Farm. He will be joined in the kitchen by special guest Christine Passarella, who lives in New York City and honed her skills at Todd English’s Olives.

The cost is $25 per person, which includes taste sampling, wine and a recipe card to take home. To sign up, call 978-387-5996 or email

Jewett Farms’ showroom is located at 58 Merrimac St.

New time-trading group to meet

Learn how to be a time trader at a meeting this Sunday at 4 p.m. at Central Congregational Church in Newburyport.

The Time Trade Circle of Greater Newburyport is a new group that will use a time bank to offer and receive a wide range of services in the area. A time bank is a system that uses the currency of time, with one time dollar being equal to one hour of a person’s labor.

Examples of services could include home improvements, pet care, tutoring, computer assistance, chauffeur service and accounting help.

The church is located at 14 Titcomb St.

Authors to visit Port bookstore

Jabberwocky Bookshop is hosting two author events this week.

Newburyport native Donna O’Neil will return to her hometown tomorrow to promote her new book, “Instrument of Courage.”

At 7 p.m., O’Neil will sign copies of the novel and will also discuss her next book, “Shrimp Dancing With the Undesirables,” as well as a book she edited about crime in Tennessee, where she lives now.

“Instrument of Courage” tells the story of a man who is forced to face his demons when he returns to his college town for a funeral.

O’Neil has worked for a number of newspapers, including The Daily News, and is the daughter of a former editor, the late John O’Neil.

On Sunday, Halloween will come early when Danvers author Paul Czajak leads a program of fun and games based on his new children’s picture book, “Monster Needs a Costume.”

Starting at 1 p.m., families will enjoy crafts, story time and treats. Children wearing costumes will be entered in a raffle for a free T-shirt and other prizes.

The bookstore is located in The Tannery Marketplace, 50 Water St. For more information, call 978-465-9359 or visit

Parade of pooches to benefit rescue group

The Black Dog is partnering with One Tail at a Time Rescue to host a Doggie Paw-rade on Saturday at 10 a.m.

The event at the 19 Water St., Newburyport, store will feature contests, treats and prizes. Dogs will also be available for adoption.

A $5 entry fee will benefit One Tail at a Time, and Black Dog will match the total of donations collected. For more information, call 978-462-3888 or email

Sculpture outdoors at Maudslay

The 15th Sculpture at Maudslay, featuring the work of 33 North Shore artists, is on view through Sept. 29.

This year’s theme is “Intertwined,” which coordinator Bert Snow said has inspired works ranging from blue crocheted nests in trees to an old bridge abutment with trees wrapping around it to a big, swirling umbrella form.

An artists’ reception and tour will be held this Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m.

Maudslay State Park is located on Curzon Mill Road in Newburyport. The exhibit can be viewed for free, but there is a $2 parking fee. For more information, call 978-465-7223.

Tour a lighthouse this weekend

The Newburyport Harbor Light at Plum Island will be open for tours from 1 to 4 p.m. this Sunday, weather permitting.

Sneakers are required, and there is a short ladder to climb. Children must be at least 5 years old and 42 inches tall.

Admission and parking are free, though donations will be accepted. The Friends of Plum Island Light is also hosting an end-of-season sale, featuring many lighthouse items.

For more information, call 978-463-2867, email or visit

Blues on tap at the Grog

Parker Wheeler & Friends will welcome Ed “Duato” Scheer for this Sunday’s performance at the Grog in Newburyport.

Scheer, a drummer, is the leader of The Love Dogs and will be joined by band mates bassist Randy Bramwell and saxophonist Mario Perrett, as well as guitarist Ricky “King” Russell, drummer Steve Bankuti and saxophonist Amadee Castenell.

Admission is $7, and the show will be held from 7 to 11 p.m. at the 13 Middle St. restaurant.

Local poet to read at gallery

Amesbury poet and author Bryan P.T. Riley will read tonight at the Jon P. Mooers Artists Gallery and Studio.

Riley will share some of his past work, as well as pieces from his 13th volume of poetry, “Seven Degrees,” which will be published in December.

A meet-and-greet will start at 6:30 p.m., followed by the reading at 7. Light snacks and beverages will be served.

The gallery is located at 19 Main St., Amesbury. For more information, call 978-228-9537.


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