Member of the reality-based community of progressive (not anonymous) Massachusetts blogs
Update: We’re talking chickens! Not the LFF, but what the hell. Jump in.
We were graced with a scathing visitation from The Lowell Shallot:
Lowell Shallot Says:
July 18th, 2013 at 7:55 am
Why isn’t anyone talking about Peter Aucella and the Folk Fest article (LINK- added by Jack). It blows my mind how obtuse this guy is. Declining support each year in terms of attendees and sponsorship and this guy wants more support from local businesses who “benefit”. Isn’t it the management and production of the event that has made it less relevant each year? Look in the mirror Pete. They lost WGBH a long time ago, and they are looking to the businesses downtown to make up the difference? What businesses downtown? Everyone is struggling. Perhaps the organizers should look inward to see their failings for answers. Where is COOL in all of this? No busking during Folk Fest? Why? Let’s get it together people. Here’s a novel idea, get acts worth seeing and maybe people will come, and pay to see them! Brilliant!
Aucella should step down, as should each member of the Festival Committee.
Arthur Sutcliffe - Chairman of the Board
Helene Loiselle - Board of Trustees
Pauline Golec - Board of Trustees / Ethnic Chair
Richard Cohan - Board of Trustees
John Scannell - Board of Trustees
Corey Belanger - Advisory Board Member
Patricia Bowe - Advisory Board Member
Renee Caraviello - Advisory Board Member
Michael Couture - Advisory Board Member
Donald DuPaul - Advisory Board Member
Beth Fraser - Advisory Board Member
Bob Howard - Advisory Board Member
Janet Leggat - Advisory Board Member
Janis Maliszewski - Advisory Board Member
Debbie Miller - Advisory Board Member
Priscilla Partyka - Advisory Board Member
Mike Soriano - Advisory Board Member
Ann Scannell - Advisory Board Member
Joellen Scannell - Advisory Board Member
Dean Secchiaroli - Advisory Board Member
Stacey Renna - Advisory Board Member
Cory Belanger– like we need this guy in City Council. What’s with all the Scannells? Don’t they make boilers? How old is this committee? Where is the new blood? I also love the title ‘ethnic chair’. WTF does that mean?
I don’t know most of these people, but I do know the result of their work and I am sure that Peter Aucella is not setting the world on fire. Step aside people. You’re an embarrassment to the city and yourselves.
There is, then, a back and forth between two anonymous commenters on the original thread. Click back, if you care. I don’t care so much for anon on anon bashing. I mean, .. really? But, sometimes little glimmers of usefulness pops out of such exchanges. Even if it is useful by being wrong and others chime in to offer some true insight.
Such a thing just happened on Facebook. The person is an anon to you, but not to me: (more…)
I don’t know and I don’t care. But others may, like our drive by commenter - brian.
1.Name: brian |
Why no comments in blogosphere or yesterday’s column about market basket takeover? Not a story?
That said, food security in no joke. There are plenty of Lowellians who are lower working class or on fixed incomes.
FYI: I will not moderate anything that is over the top, scurrilous, defamatory or libelous. The DeMoulas are still family, afterall, and I’m sure they have deep pockets and AWESOME shysters.
Please shop around on this Open Thread.
Nothing to make past cronyism obvious than a former License Commission member legally representing the owner of one of the bigger violators of ordinances in regards to an accusation of assault on a UML student at his establishment.
The owner of Finn’s Pub on Merrimack Street has been charged with punching and kicking a student outside his establishment during a UMass Lowell pub crawl last month.
Finn’s Owner Kevin Hayhurst, 35, of 127 Loon Hill Road, Dracut, was arraigned Wednesday in Lowell District on charges of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and assault and battery.
Hayhurst, who also owns Brian’s Ivy Hall and is being represented by Raymond Weicker, told The Sun he denies all the allegations against him.
The assault charges are serious stuff, and of course I hope the law finds the truth, whatever that is, but can we finally shut down these troublesome establishments? For one thing, they are giving our city a nasty reputation. We don’t need this crap here.
For god’s sake, Hayhurst (why is it our angriest bullies all have last names starting with “Hay”?) told Paul Belley to go fuck himself. Nice.
Thank god we cleaned house on that Commission. Weicker’s chumminess with the worst bar owner in Lowell, along with Bayliss and all of that noise…it was bad for downtown, and bad for Lowell.
Tonight, as the Council contorts itself to defend the integrity of The Belvidere, please consider something. Who remembers this episode?
LOWELL CITY COUNCIL
TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 25, 2012
CITY HALL, CITY COUNCIL CHAMBER
TIME 6:30 PM
GENERAL PUBLIC HEARINGS (Scheduled for 7PM)
9. Ordinance-Amend zoning (Westview Road)
I’m going to quickly paste in a bunch of info, so you can judge for yourself whether the City Council is plague by an integrity problem. Maybe, because of national politics, we have become immune to ‘flip-flopping?’
You might have been sensing a theme rising in our small city community lately. It’s a theme that is spreading out across the country, but it has special significance to Lowell. Call it the DIY movement. Or self-sufficiency. Or making things.
There may at first glance not seem a specific link between groups like Mill City Grows, small local businesses like Sweet Lydia’s, and “makerspace” groups which are also becoming the buzz around here, but in effect, it’s about people in a community doing for themselves. Whether that’s sustainable gardening, using Kickstarter to raise enough funds to open your own sweets shop, or sharing incubator or machine space with others, it’s about innovating ways at the grassroots level to do for yourself, alongside a community of people, what cannot be accomplished alone.
It’s a movement that asks, what if we could feed ourselves with safe, locally grown food, even in the city? What if I could learn to machine my own parts? What if I could start a business in such a way that causes the community to have a stake with me?
That it’s happening so much in Lowell is a product of several things converging…first, the energy of new, young, professionals engaging in their community. Also, an emphasis on the new economy and innovative economic ideas by the city and its Planning Department, and the doubling of that by a University which is expanding by building such things as the Nerve Center. Lastly, Lowell’s unique history of industry and innovation creates a narrative that is a good foundation for a new wave of doers.
I’ll even admit to being infected myself. I might not be interested in a community garden space with one of Mill City Grow’s new gardens (after all, I do have a half decent backyard much closer to home) but I’ve been inspired by them to really up the ante this year in producing my own veggies. I’ve started collecting ideas on Pinterest and even am cataloging my own journey with DIY projects to make urban gardening easier and more productive (and woodchuck proof). I’ve always had an interest in planting since I was a kid, but now I mean business. (Well, not literally, since I won’t be selling anything, but I hope to have enough excess to give to family and friends, and even to make regular trips to the MV Food Bank). My goal is not to go pretty, but utilitarian, with sub-irrigated DIY buckets, towers, and some indoor growing (since I have this amazing, largely unused, southern-exposure windowed four-season room in my house going to waste).
Yeah, it’s getting that crazy. There’s just something in the air in Lowell these days. A doing thing. Stay tuned. (And our new show, Threads, will definitely be talking to some of Lowell’s new makers too!)
Friend of the blog (and good friend) Cliff Krieger has been nominated by CM Lynch for the License Commission, as Jen Myers writes at the official blog of the Mayor. You might recall, the License Commission had been under fire for sitting on its hands after the downtown rioting at the club at Fortunato’s and other violence and vandalism issues stemming from bars and clubs. Since then, both Bayliss and Weicker have resigned. (Not without a bit of a fuss.)
As Jen says, Cliff had been planning to run for the Lowell School Committee, and though I’m not sure what this does to those plans, you couldn’t get a better person to oversee a very sticky and previously controversial situation. Cliff will listen to the recommendations of the police chief, of residents, businesses…and of the club owners themselves, too, but in a proportional way. He is a conservative in the truest sense of that word - he wants our city to be welcoming, and remain so, for the many people who coexist downtown, like residents, consumers, and the non-club business owners who are the ones who find the aftermath of overserved drunkards at their doorstep on Monday mornings.
Contrary to (some) popular rumor, Cliff and I (and Jack, and whoever) are not all big giant conspirators with Lynch behind the scenes, and this took me by surprise, albeit a pleasant one. According to Jen, this spot had to go to a Republican, and I can’t think of a better person to help clean up the mess.
Also being appointed, to the LHA, is Samkhann Khoeun. I don’t know Samkhann, but Jen has more bio info at her blog post and he seems to be a community leader with some gravitas, and it’s great to see some diversity on our boards. Good luck to both!
In a full, regular session CM Bernie Lynch made his case for what he views as the most fiscally prudent way forward, taking into account the $6.4Million the Commonwealth has certified as Free Cash. The CM presented a detailed slide presentation in an effort to convince a majority of the City Council to support his fiscal sensibilities. Your mileage may vary, but Lowell is doing swell on so many fronts. Shouldn’t we just follow along?
A lazy man may say “Yes.” But, we have a Plan E Charter and our Council cannot, in good faith, simply roll over should this manager, or any manager, wink. Fortunately, CM Lynch presents a very solid case for the fine shape we are in. That fact makes it that much tougher to recklessly bat at his logic.
Below we find two of Lynch’s favorite metrics: Cash Reserves & Excess Levy Capacity
These metrics are measures of frugality. We don’t blow our budget and we don’t, contrary to popular myth, tax Lowellelians to death. (The last point drives UTL President Paul Georges nuts.) The take away here is that it is good to build up a rainy day fund, while concurrently leaving money in folks pockets. Some may argue that raising taxes EVER is a torrential downpour. They are full of crap, imho. Next…
Thanks to Corey S, I found my way onto a photo gallery on Facebook by the Lowell Historical Society. As a “nouveau townie” (let’s do away with blow-in, please), I was fascinated to see what Lowell looked like as it widened Pawtucket Blvd, built the Wang Towers and the Rourke bridge, and before the tear-down and rebuilding of large areas of downtown Lowell. This early-80s set of photos (donated anonymously) is a great walk down memory lane for some, and a fascinating look at old Lowell for those who have more recently made it their home.
In other great Lowellcentric things to browse on a Sunday afternoon, I again came across the Rourke Bridge replacement study website, which has lots and lots of great information on the public meetings, studies that have been done, and more. As project websites go, it’s a really good one. If you, like me, missed the public meetings, I highly recommend reading through some of the material!
I could not, alas, make it to the Tanner St public meeting last night due to another obligation, but Dick Howe has a post with a report.
This is my neck of the woods, so I’m keenly interested in things like proposed realignments for the south end of Tanner St, and the different ideas for connecting the Connector better to the district. The first addresses the major problem of bottleneck at the Connector exit; it’s a nightmare sometimes to try to get onto Tanner St which abuts real close to, but does not align with, the Connector exits and entrances, with the light at Target being right afterwards. Then you add all the 18-wheeler, tow truck, and truck traffic trying to get access from Plain to the industrial end of Tanner, and you can well imagine that something like a Connector exit/entrance at Howard St (the left-turn at the north end of Tanner) would allow the truck traffic more direct access, alleviating that problem as well. I’m not sure that can be done, but if it can, it’d be a significant improvement for both area residents trying to get home as well as attractive to potential new industrial companies who would have direct truck access without tangling with much city traffic.
Anyway, there’s lots of talk about a trail along the River Meadow Brook, which is cool, and trying to figure out how to allow access to and use of East Pond, another natural asset. Also discussion about improvements to Tanner like good sidewalks (boy would that be welcome) and trees, land use studies to figure out any zoning changes, and how to fluff up the pretty dismal entrances into the district.
The big problem with long term plans for an area such as this is that what might be judged to be attractive to businesses now may not in the future. However, I feel that the folks behind this plan have taken a realistic and balanced approach - noting that grandiose, single-company large-scale buildings are not the way to go, but to create a place where small and medium sized industrial companies can buy or lease subdivisions, while making sure to accommodate existing businesses, of which there are many.
More information on Tanner is on the City’s webpage, including maps, meeting materials, and hopefully soon, the draft proposal.
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