2015 Essex Heritage Heroes Announced!


The Board and staff of Essex Heritage together with the Heritage Hero Honorary Committee proudly announce the 2015 Essex Heritage Hero Award recipients:

  • Albert Creighton, Jr., Founder, Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust
  • Frederic Winthrop, Former Executive Director, The Trustees of Reservations and Former Commissioner, Massachusetts Department of Food and Agriculture
  • Edward Becker, Executive Director, Essex County Greenbelt Association

During the course of nearly 50 years, these three remarkable individuals have collectively inspired a powerful land conservation ethos in Essex County and beyond. Learn more.

Trails & Sails Terrific!
Another BANNER year for Trails & Sails! The 2014 event boasted 150+ FREE opportunities to connect you to the spectacular places that define the Essex National Heritage Area. We estimate that over 6,000 people enjoyed Trails & Sails this year, the largest audience to date! THANK YOU to all the event hosts, volunteers, participants, and our sponsors for making the 13th annual Trails & Sails such a terrific success! We could not present this event without all of your enthusiasm!

How was your Trails & Sails?

Planning efforts are underway for 2015 and we need your feedback! Please help us make Trails & Sails better and better by taking this brief online survey.  Complete this survey to vote for your favorite event AND enter your name into the drawing to win a beautiful, limited edition Essex National Heritage Area photo book!


Trails & Sails 2014 is generously sponsored by: 


We Like To... Move It!
Move It! Challenge Completed

Congratulations to the 200+ people that took on the  Move It: 100 Miles in 100 Days Challenge! Get this: the participants tracking miles through our Move It! Mileage Tracker collectively trekked 5,780+ total miles -- that's equivalent to traveling across the state of Massachusetts 30 times!


Final Challenge: Take the Move It! Survey

If you participated in the Move It! Challenge, please take this short survey. By completing the survey you can enter your name into the drawing to win one of five portable barbecue cooler bags from Lahey Health that we'll be giving away for all your chilling & grilling needs!

Presented by Essex Heritage and the YMCA of the North Shore, the Move It! program was made possible in part by a  National Park Foundation 2014 Active Trails grantThe Essex National Heritage Area is one of 37 national parks and affiliated park areas selected to receive an Active Trails grant this year.
Partnership Grant Spotlight

Friends of North Andover Trails
In addition to leading guided hikes and coordinating monthly work days on town trails, the all-volunteer friends group is producing a comprehensive guide to North Andover's trails and open spaces. The full color guide will increase awareness and access to the town trail system by providing maps, photos, hiking itineraries as well as historical and ecological information for 15 North Andover properties, including the 200-mile Bay Circuit Trail which passes through the town. Learn more at
Give It A Shot! Photo Contest Deadline Fast Approaching
Submit by December 1, 2014
Rockport Dock by Ken Jordan
2013 Grand Prize

All photographers are invited to submit images into the 2014 Essex National Heritage Area Photo Contest to win some amazing prizes! Photographs must be taken within the Heritage Area and represent one of this year's three contest categories. Learn more and grab your entry form to win!
Heritage Area Info Desk A Hit With Visitors!

The Essex National Heritage Area Visitor Information Desk at the National Park Service Visitor Center in Salem opened on July 1, 2014 -- and the response from the public has been outstanding! We are reaching out to a global audience and sharing information about the many unique places of Essex County. The desk includes an internet-connected 70" screen that can show visitors websites, directions and other relevant information about the region. The desk is capably staffed by manager Kathryn Rutkowski and Ryan McMahon, both natives of the region and former NPS seasonal staff that are happy to share some of the ways this region is like nowhere else!
Along the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway

Byway Signage Project Launched
With the goal of enhancing the byway traveler experience, Essex Heritage launched a project to install directional signage along the entire 90-mile route of the Essex Coastal Scenic Byway. With input from the 14 coastal municipalities, the initial phase of the project focuses on creating a sign location plan that meets local, state and federal guidelines. A subsequent phase will focus on the fabrication and installation of the signs. The project is funded by the Federal Highway Administration and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation.


Border to Boston Trail in Salisbury Reopens

Following rebuilding of the Town Creek culverts, Salisbury's popular Old Eastern Marsh Trail recently reopened to the public after almost a year of work.  Running north from the Merrimack River, the trail connects to Newburyport's Clipper City Rail Trail and forms a link in the regional Coastal Trails Coalition network, the county-long Border to Boston Trail, and the national East Coast Greenway. Learn more.


Ipswich Architectural Preservation District Passes

The Architectural Preservation District proposed by the Ipswich Historical Commission passed Town Meeting recently. The new district will afford improved protection to hundreds of First Period and other early buildings primarily within the town's downtown. Read the Salem News story or learn more on the Ipswich Historical Commission website.

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Heritage Education Update

Salem Students Connect With Hawthorne And Their City
Students in Salem High School's American Studies class experienced an interactive Hawthorne-based walking tour of their city coordinated by Essex Heritage, including stops at Salem Maritime National Historic Site's Custom House (where Hawthorne worked) and the House of the Seven Gables. With the goal of helping students build their own connections to the history and present-day realities of the city of Salem -- just as Nathaniel Hawthorne did in his own time -- the tour highlighted some of the many places in Salem with ties to the famous author. Read on.
New Approaches to Large Landscape Conservation

Essex Heritage CEO Annie Harris recently spoke at the prestigious National Workshop on Large Landscape Conservation in Washington, DC. The meeting was attended by nearly 600 conservation leaders, policy makers and experts from public, private, nonprofit, and academic sectors. The inspirational keynote address was given by Secretary of Interior the Sally Jewell. Read on to learn more about the workshop.
Special Thanks to Our Corporate Members

Essex Heritage extends special thanks to our new and renewing Corporate Members -- businesses who believe in our mission.

Sustainer Circle
Benefactor Circle

Supporter Circle 

In This Issue
2015 Essex Heritage Heroes
Trails & Sails Terrific!
We Like To Move It!
Partnership Grant Spotlight
Give It A Shot!
Along the Coastal Byway
Heritage Education Update
Approaches to Large Landscape Conservation
Thanks, Corporate Members!
Essex Heritage & Featured Partner Events

Sunday, November 23
1 - 3 PM
Mutt Strut with Greenbelt

December 1 - 31

Saturday, December 6
9 - 11 AM

Saturday, December 6
3:30 - 5 PM

Heritage Happenings



November 15 - 16

Annual Amesbury Open Studio Tour


Sunday, December 6

2 - 4 PM

Whittier Home Holiday Open House

Saturday, December 6

Saturday, November 22

Saturday, December 6
11 AM - 3 PM


December 5 - 7
Christmas Weekend at Glen Magna Farms



Tuesday, November 18

7:30 PM

Michael March: Trends in Art and Antique Auctions



Saturday, November 15

1 PM

Don't Take It for Granite!


10:30 AM & 3:30 PM

Saturday, December 13

November 29 - December 14


November 15 - 16 & November 21 - 23

Ipswich Is First... Period



Thursday, November 13

6 - 9:30 PM

Glow Gala



Saturday, November 15

7 PM

Artists at the Atlantic Auction



Saturday, November 15

9 - 11 AM

Guided Hike in Hemlock Glen Woods, (Great Hill & Wyman Hill) West Manchester



Thursday, November 13

7:30 PM

Images of Marblehead by Dan Dixey

December 4 - 7

Friday, December 5, 7 - 9 PM

Sunday, November 16, 2 PM


Monday, November 17

3:30 - 5 PM
Farm Friends II



Saturday, November 15
10 AM - 3 PM



Sunday, December 7, 1 PM

North Andover Historical Society Holiday Open House 



Saturday, November 15

9 AM - 4 PM

33rd Annual Craft Fair & Apple Bake



Thursday, November 20

7 PM 

Community Concert: Ethel



Friday, November 14

6 - 9 PM

Annual Salem Wine Imports Grand Wine Tasting


Thursday, November 20

6 - 9 PM

PEM/PM: Digital Detox



November 21 - December 6
Sea Festival of Trees



Saturday, November 15

6 PM

Comedy Show & Buffet at Peirce Farm at Witch Hill


Sunday, November 16

Various Times

Big Woods Hike


Thursday, November 27

10 AM - 12 PM

Thanksgiving Open House at Capen House



November 21 - 22

Wenham Museum Sleigh Bell Artisan Fair

Great Marsh Symposium 2014


The Great Marsh Coalition invites coastal decision makers from the region to explore, identify, and discuss various ongoing case studies addressing adaptation efforts to mitigate sea level rise impacts in the Great Marsh. The Great Marsh Symposium: Case Studies in Local Adaptation will be held on Thursday, November 13, 2014. Learn more about The Great Marsh.


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News from the Essex National Heritage Area is a monthly electronic newsletter for members, non-members and site partners of Essex Heritage to raise the visibility of the Essex National Heritage Area, all its special places, and our ongoing activities. Articles that are 150 words or less and fit the scope of our newsletter may be submitted to Essex Heritage for publication. We reserve the right to select an article or portion of an article whose content is found appropriate and edit it for publication.