Aug 062017
 

Come Tuesday, August 8th the Salem Common will see “children of all ages” lining up for a taste of ice cream. And we mean “line up” as the Ice Scream Bowl annually draws overflow crowds of kids, teens, parents and grandparents.

Rain or shine, from 6pm to 7:30pm, it’s time to sample some of the best ice cream in the North Shore from some of the many ice cream shops the area has to offer. Are you looking for a classic, or something new or a mix of combinations?

A few of the homegrown local businesses serving samples at the event will include Captain Dusty’s, Maria’s Sweet Somethings, and Melt Ice Cream. Salem’s Ice Scream Bowl is a fun event for both children and adults to cool down from the heat and enjoy tasty ice cream. North Shore 104.9 will be in attendance with fun games and takeaways

This Heritage Days favorite is a fund-raiser for Salem Main Streets. Because we do this during Heritage days which draws tourists from all over the region, the USA and the world, we have seen people from many countries stepping up for a sample.

And, we thought, is the USA the top ice cream consuming nation? If not, who is? Can you guess before reading further?

According to IceCream.com the Top 5 Ice Cream consuming countries world-wide (per capita., gallons per year):

  1. New Zealand 7.5
  2. USA 5.5
  3. Australia 4.8
  4. Finland 3.8
  5. Sweden 3.8

The cost is $6 for adults and $4 for children. Tickets are purchased on site on the day of the event.  A spoon and napkins will be supplied with the purchase of a ticket.

The Ice Scream Bowl is going green this year! All of our materials are recyclable or compostable to reduce the impact of this popular event. Special thanks to SalemRecycles for helping to cover the increased costs of materials, as well as their expert advice in making this a more environmentally-friendly event.

Proceeds go to support Salem Main Streets, a nonprofit organization focusing on the continued revitalization of downtown Salem as a vibrant year-round retail, dining, and cultural destination.

Salem Main Streets organizes the Salem Farmers’ Market, Salem Arts Festival, and many other events in downtown Salem, as well as offering direct business support to downtown businesses.

The Ice Scream Bowl is coordinated in partnership between Salem Main Streets and the City of Salem as part of Salem Heritage Days.

For any other questions or comments regarding this event, please contact Kylie Sullivan at Salem Main Streets at (978) 744-0004 x15 or email at kylie@salemmainstreets.org.

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May 292017
 

Art is good. Art is what you have at an arts fest. But the 9th annual Salem Arts Festival (to be held June 2-4th) is art and much, much more. This popular free family-friendly event will feature over 100 artists and performers, and includes a variety of art, music, dance, and theatre performances. Public activities include onsite art-making for all ages, local artisan vendors selling their creations, and a community-built public art installation.

One of the most anticipated events this year is “Tidal Shift,” a collaborative public art project led by artist and architect Claudia Paraschiv of Salem Public Space Project, featuring an installation of plastic bag jellyfish over Front Street. During the past few months, community groups and locals of all ages have created hundreds of jellyfish as part of an initiative to help educate the community about the negative impacts of plastic bag usage and the City of Salem’s upcoming plastic bag reduction. A brief celebration and presentation of the “Tidal Shift” project will be included in the Friday night reception at 6:35 p.m.

This year, the Salem Arts Festival also celebrates the second “Mural Slam” on Artists’ Row, organized by the City of Salem’s Public Art Commission and Public Art Planner Deborah Greel. Murals will be painted throughout the weekend by 10 selected artists and will be completed by the end of the festival.

In addition, the Festival marks the return of vendors to Artists’ Row, with both new and returning tenants for the 2017 season.

Festival Specifics

The Salem Arts Festival kicks off with an opening reception at Salem’s Old Town Hall on Friday, June 2nd at 6 p.m.  The free event allows visitors to enjoy beautiful art work while being entertained by renowned local and regional performers Lindsay Straw, Dingonek Street Band, and headliners Grupo Fantasia.

The Festival takes place at a variety of indoor and outdoor venues in downtown Salem. Primary locations include Old Town Hall, Derby Square, Front Street, and Artists’ Row.  A Juried Art Show will be held in Old Town Hall throughout the Festival, with an artisan street fair in the area around the building on Saturday and Sunday.  Live performances will take place on Derby Square, Artists’ Row, and Front Street.

The Salem Arts Festival is rain or shine event; in case of inclement weather, performances will be moved into Old Town Hall.  Full schedule and programs will be available on site during the Festival, as well as the Festival website (www.salemartsfestival.com).

“There’s been a tremendous amount of collaboration between so many local groups and individuals to continue to improve and expand the Festival every year.  I can’t wait to share the phenomenal energy and talent that will be on display this year,” says Kylie Sullivan, Executive Director of Salem Main Streets (SMS), the community non-profit organization coordinating the Festival.

The goal of the Salem Arts Festival is to promote all the arts in Salem and to provide the entire North Shore arts community with an opportunity to showcase their talents. The Festival is run in collaboration with Salem Main Streets by a team of dedicated volunteers, including media partner Creative Salem and representatives from the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem YMCA, Salem State University, The Phoenix School, Salem Food Tours, Salem Arts Association, and many more.

Speaking of dedicated volunteers, we are still looking for volunteers for the Salem Arts Festival!  If you would like to join our merry band during this year’s Festival, or if you’ve signed up for one slot but might be available for more, please sign up online at http://signup.com/go/lccZdGg. Even if you’re away the weekend of the Festival, we have some volunteer needs on the days leading up to the event!

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Apr 082017
 

Local food, fashion, drink, dancing, and fun await you April 14th as you are invited to attend the fourth annual Salem Arts Festival Fashion Show Fundraiser in support of one of Salem’s greatest festivals (we refer of course to The 9th annual Salem Arts Festival which will be held June 2nd to 4th, 2017)!

The Fashion Show gets bigger and better every year, and it’s really the perfect way to introduce the dynamic, locally-focused energy behind the Arts Festival,” says Kylie Sullivan, Executive Director of Salem Main Streets (SMS), the community non-profit organization which oversees the Festival. “The need for financial support is critical for the success of the festival, which annually welcomes over 5,000 attendees to downtown Salem over the first weekend in June.  We are committed to keeping the festival free and open to the public, but we’re also committed to paying our artists – that means we need to raise some substantial funds.”

The event will be held upstairs at the beautiful and historic Old Town Hall at 32 Derby Square, this year with a record-breaking number of boutiques.

The Fashion Show annually highlights a growing number of local boutiques – including Avalanche, Beach Bride Baubles, The Boutique, Curtsy, Emporium 32, J. Mode, Lifebridge’s Second Chance Thrift Shop, Modern Millie Vintage & Consignments, Ocean Chic Boutique & Waterbar, the Peabody Essex Museum Shop, re-find and re-find men’s, and RJ Coins and Jewelry, with professional stylist Lisa Ann Schraffa Santin on hand. Make up will be provided by the fabulous artists from Laura Lanes Skin Care, Rouge Cosmetics, Radiance Aveda, Arbonne by Roz, and Victoria Crisp, with hair styling by Bella Hair Studios and My Barber Shop.

Karen Scalia of Salem Food Tours is the mastermind behind all fashion show logistics and staging, and Creative Salem serves as the show’s media partner – locals know that means it’s going to be an amazing night. Attendees can additionally expect some fantastic outside-the-box accoutrements from local creative genius Grace & Diggs, a photo booth with Creative Salem, and mind-blowing lighting by Retonica. Food by Ferreira Foods, drinks by North Shore Bartending, dancing with DJ Seth, and a great raffle will make the evening complete!

Advance tickets are $25 per person with a cash bar, with $40 VIP tickets available for an assigned seat on the catwalk and a free thank you treat. Tickets purchased the day of the event are $30, with $45 for VIP seats – but this event has sold out the past two years, so we don’t recommend waiting!

Purchase tickets over the phone at 978-744-0004 x115, in person at 265 Essex Street (Salem Main Streets), or online at https://salem-main-streets.ticketleap.com/fashion-2017. Proceeds directly benefit the Salem Arts Festival.

About the Salem Arts Festival

This popular free event features over 100 artists and performers, and includes a variety of art, music, dance, and theatre performances. The family-friendly event also includes an artisan street fair, art-making activities for all ages, and a temporary community-created public art installation.  The Festival is run by Salem Main Streets in collaboration with a team of dedicated volunteers, including representatives from Creative Salem, Salem State University, the Peabody Essex Museum, and more. The Salem Arts Festival is supported in part by the City of Salem and a grant from the Salem Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

(Photo credit to Creative Salem)

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Mar 012017
 

While a dinner date in Salem is always a treat, it is especially a “big deal” during our annual Salem Spring Restaurant Week when local merchants roll out the red carpet to entice the hungry and the curious into our many, many dinning spots.

Salem Spring Restaurant Week, produced by the Salem Chamber of Commerce, kicks off on Sunday, March 12th, featuring the best local cuisine at value pricing. For 10 days only, participating Salem restaurants will offer specially priced menus for Salem Spring Restaurant Week. (Sunday, March 12 – Thursday, March 16 and again Sunday, March 19 – Thursday, March 23).

While not a complete list of participants, this is fairly representative of the wide variety of cuisines you can find within walking distance of each other in Salem.

Adriatic Restaurant and Bar – Offering a $25 per person menu.
155 Washington Street, Salem, MA – (978) 594-1832
Click here to make a reservation.

A warm interior and excellent cuisine—a winning combination that defines the Adriatic Restaurant & Bar. The brick oven pizzas are always a hit, and imaginative libations make customers come back time and again. Excellent market-fresh fish dishes inspired by regions surrounding the Adriatic Sea give this Mediterranean eatery something to boast about. A lengthy wine list featuring imported varietals and blends bring every meal’s flavors to fore and make patrons hunger for more.

Aurora Restaurant & Wine Bar
140 Washington Street, Salem, MA – (617) 510-6116
Click here to make a reservation.

Aurora is a relatively new and unique fixture in downtown Salem. Offering the best Vietnamese cuisine around, Aurora believes in featuring regional Asian dishes with fresh, high quality vegetables, meats, traditional spices, and herbs. Great for lunch or dinner, or simply enjoy their wine bar and sample authentic appetizers with your friends.

Bella Verona
107 Essex Street, Salem, MA – (978) 825-9911

Chef-owner Giorgio Manzana hails from Lake Garda Italy in the Provence of Verona and has a hotel-restaurant background that goes back over 35 years. Bella Verona enjoys catering to their clients, creating new dishes and continuing the simple good and authentic home-style cooking of Manzana’s region as well as other parts of Italy. As an Italian restaurant in the heart of Salem, they will bring you back to Verona, the home of Romeo and Juliet, to lose yourselves in the atmosphere and excellent food. In keeping to their traditional roots they offer creative options with homemade pastas, and great daily specials.

BonChon
299 Essex Street, Salem, MA – (978) 594-8256

“Bonchon” means “my hometown” in Korean. True to their original roots, Bonchon Downtown Salem is a family friendly establishment, offering an affordable casual dining experience along with lively atmosphere.  Enjoy the flavorful chicken wings that are their signature dish and then wash that down with a local Notch brew.

Finz Seafood & Grill – Offering a $25 per person menu.
76 Wharf Street, Salem, MA – (978) 744-0000
Click here to make a reservation.

Innovative and inspired menus, fresh raw bar, and a carefully chosen wine list all lead to an extraordinary dining experience at Finz. Our menu emphasizes creatively prepared fresh seasonal seafood. Our raw bar offers the freshest local oysters, clams, chilled lobster, colossal crab and jumbo shrimp. With indoor and outdoor waterfront dining, Finz is a great place to relax and enjoy outstanding food and drinks. Zagat’s rated Finz Seafood & Grill one of the Top 10 Waterfront restaurants in New England.

Firenze Trattoria
2 Lynde Street, Salem, MA – (978) 219-1188

Firenze Trattoria is chef Zamir Kociaj’s way of sharing his passion for the authentic tastes of Firenze with the historic town of Salem. Merging years of experience with a neighborhood vibe, Firenze Trattoria is the perfect place to celebrate the simple moments with loved ones and friends while dining on delectable Italian fare.

Koto Grill & Sushi
90 Washington Street, Salem, MA – (978) 498-4826

A relatively new addition to the Salem downtown, Koto opened in late 2014.  With traditional Japanese cuisine including sushi, sashimi, hibachi and more, Koto Grill & Sushi is a breath of fresh air in local Asian cuisine scene. Enjoy dinner and a cocktail (or two) at the front window overlooking one of Salem’s main streets.

Life Alive – Offering a $15 per person menu.
281 Essex Street, Salem, MA – (978) 594-4644

A delicious meal, no matter how simple, is the starting point for nurturing the body and soul, and at the same time, the family and even the community at large. We know you no longer want to compromise between fantastic flavor, whole foods goodness, and fast food convenience. Find all this and more at Life Alive!

Nat’s at the Hawthorne Hotel
18 Washington Street, Salem, MA – (978) 825-4300
Click here to make reservations on Yelp.

For an unforgettable fine dining experience in Salem, enjoy the ambiance, warmth and hospitality of award-winning seasonal cuisine from Nathaniel’s restaurant. The menu features contemporary dining in a historic setting, while offering a carefully crafted wine menu and scrumptious desserts that will complete any night out or special occasion.

Opus
87 Washington Street, Salem, MA – (978) 744-9600

With what can only be described as a maverick kitchen, Opus’ cuisine boasts unexpected flavor combinations that simply taste amazing. The restaurant’s dynamic sushi team draws on both east and western influences to create sushi rolls that are truly unique. The upstairs dining room is centered around an oversized, glowing glass bar where guests can meet for a drink or enjoy a three-course meal. Downstairs, in Opus Underground, guests can enjoy nightly entertainment in a Moroccan-inspired space filled with cozy seating and thought-out details. Opus is a go-to destination for live music, dinner, and cocktails seven days a week.

Regatta Pub at the Waterfront Hotel – Offering $15, $25, & $35 per person menus.
225 Derby Street, Salem, MA –  (978) 740-8788

The Regatta offers casual dining with flair. Try their signature “Regatta Blue” martini with your favorite burger or fresh seafood with a glass of chilled wine. The Regatta Pub offers an eclectic choice of appetizers, salads, sandwiches, and entrees in a relaxed and nautical inspired atmosphere, or chose to dine outside on their patio, weather permitting.

Rockafellas – Offering a $25 per person menu.
231 Essex Street, Salem, MA – (978) 745-2411

Rockafellas established a new tradition in dining in the center of historic Salem in 2003. As the most delicious occupant of the renowned Daniel Low Building, Rockafellas restaurant follows several other institutions of reputation including a department store, a bank (the vault now stores wines) and one of the first churches in America. Their menu features fresh seafood and Black Angus steaks and offers everything from burgers and salads and tapas to gourmet presentations. The wait staff assures a relaxed atmosphere where everyone feels at home.

Sea Level Oyster Bar – Offering a $25 per person menu.
94 Wharf Street, Salem, MA – (978) 741-0555

Click here to make reservations on Yelp.

Located on Pickering Wharf, Sea Level Oyster Bar boasts two floors of fun while offering comfortable dining and great waterfront views. Sea Level also features a sit down raw bar packed with the freshest shellfish around. With an extensive beer list and creative cocktails that will quench your thirst while the kitchen cooks up fabulous seafood, gourmet pizzas and more, you are guaranteed to leave satisfied! Don’t forget to try their scrumptious desserts stamped in approval.

Thai Place – Offering $15 & $25 per person menus.
Museum Place Mall, Salem, MA – (978) 741-8008

Thai Place Restaurant has been open since 1990. Being the first Thai Restaurant in the North Shore area of Massachusetts, they are proud to be one of the first establishments to present the unique taste, culture and sincerity of Thailand. Thai Place’s dedication to prepare the finest Thai food comes with experience, care for their customers and careful selection of the freshest ingredients.

Trattoria Orsini – Offering a $35 per person menu.
26 Congress Street, Salem, MA – (978) 594-8048

Make a reservation on their website!

Trattoria Orsini is new to Salem, and had their Grand Opening in August of 2016.  They offer modern upscale Italian cuisine with multiple dining rooms, full bar, lounge, and an outdoor patio all accessible by both land and boat on Salem’s Waterfront. The head chef of Trattoria Orsini, Vittorio Ambrogi from Tuscany, Italy, has committed to serving rich and authentic Italian dining.  The venue features a large outdoor patio with scenic views of Salem’s waterfront along with a boat dock, creating their own little Italian canal.

Turner’s Seafood at Lyceum Hall – Offering a $35 per person menu.
43 Church Street, Salem, MA – (978) 745-7665
Click here to make reservations on Open Table.

Turner’s Seafood at Lyceum Hall is an authentic New England seafood house in an iconic 1843 building with noted cultural history, complementing their family’s seafood heritage spanning four generations. This is where they prepare the catch-of-the-day becoming classic appetizers, entrees and creative daily specials. Turner’s shucks and serves the finest local and regional oysters & clams in their classic raw bar. And, their seafood market, Salem’s only, offers fresh, raw and prepared seafood to enjoy at home. It’s important to get to the docks early as good fish go fast but, the best go to Turner’s… then to you….dock to table … same day!

Victoria Station & Vic’s Boathouse
86 Wharf Street, Salem, MA – (978) 745-3400
Click here to make reservations on Open Table.

Overlooking Salem harbor, Victorian Station has established itself as a destination for friends and family for decades and is committed to providing lasting memories for generations to come. Offering a wide variety of fine American cuisine from succulent steaks to the freshest seafood and one of the last remaining “All you can eat” salad bars, there is something for every member of the culinary community.

For more information please call each individual restaurant, as there will be various choices for appetizers, entrees as well as desserts. Reservations are encouraged and please mention “Restaurant Week” when making your reservations.

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Feb 122017
 

The conversation has begun. Are you a part of it? Do you want to be? Mayor Kim Driscoll, in her State of the City address last month, announced a community visioning process known as Imagine Salem. All Salem residents and community members are invited to join the Imagine Salem community conversation to prepare a road map to what they want the community to look like in 2026—the year that Salem celebrates its 400th anniversary.

The dialogue will be framed around housing, jobs, and transportation with themes of equity and inclusiveness woven throughout the topics. The vision will serve as a guide for future decisions.

“Salem has seen tremendous investment and growth over the past ten years,” said Mayor Driscoll. “New residents are joining longtime families in calling Salem home. Brownfields are being transformed, the waterfront is coming alive, and downtown has become a vibrant destination for the region. We’ve made important investments in our infrastructure, and our local economy is robust. Now the question is what kind of city do we want to be in ten years? How do we make sure our city is best positioned to continue our prosperity? From schools to housing and transportation to employment, let’s set some expectations for ourselves and then work to get them done.”

What can you do now?

  • Visit the website (www.imaginesalem.org).
  • Take a brief online survey.
  • Like Imagine Salem on Facebook.
  • Share a photo on Instagram.
  • Attend the citywide meeting on March 8 (6:30 PM Salem High School).
  • Come to a small get-together for coffee and conversation.

Those interested in doing more are invited to host a small group conversation. The conversation could be over a cup of coffee, at a book club, or a Sunday lunch with the family — however you typically meet with your friends, family, or social groups.

The Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD) will provide you with the tools you need to facilitate a fun and engaging conversation about the future of Salem. Contact the DPCD (imaginesalem@salem.com, 978-619-5685) for more information.

“The people of Salem are what make this City great,” said Mayor Driscoll. “Our community’s vision should reflect their lives and experiences, and advance our collective hopes and dreams. I urge everyone to join the Imagine Salem conversation. I hope you will participate in as many ways as possible. Your contributions will help shape the vision for Salem’s future.”

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