Saturday, October 18, 2014

Last Melon Smashed - Comedian Gallagher comes to Beverly on his final tour



Gallagher’s Farewell Tour

Larcom Theater Beverly, MA
Saturday, October 25, 2014 7:30PM

gallagher, comedy, larcom theater, sledge-o-matic, north shore, beverly, ME Productions, Jennifer Amero
  
“Rolling Stone Magazine” calls the famous watermelon smasher, “One of the greatest comics of all time.”   He will be hanging up his “sledge-o-matic” after this farewell tour, which marks the end of a nearly 40 year career. 

He pioneered the television stand-up comedy special, racking up 14 Showtime specials during the height of his career in the 80s.  Gallagher also captured headlines as a candidate for governor in the freewheeling 2003 California recall election. In one of his campaign appearances, he lamented the state of the nation's collective IQ. "Don't you wish there were a knob on the TV to turn up the intelligence?" he asked. "There's one marked 'brightness,' but it doesn't work."

Gallagher's stage show has evolved over the years, and he now interacts more with his audiences. People from the crowd are often invited up on stage to share in the fun.  One thing that hasn't changed, though, is Gallagher's reputation as an audience-friendly performer who genuinely enjoys his gigs.  He always takes extra time to sign autographs and pose for pictures with every fan in theater lobbies before and after performing.

Tickets to see Gallagher’s Farwell Tour are $29, $39, and $44.  For tickets and more information visit www.larcomtheater.com or call 978-525-9093.

Contact Seth McNally with Interview Requests / seth@meproductions.net / 603-554-4130

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Vieques Vacation - for lovers of the wild Caribbean, families and peace seekers

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comVieques is a wonderful, off-the-grid vacation spot for laid-back, outdoorsy families. Long held by the United State as a military base used for practicing tactical procedures, the island, 8 miles east of Puerto Rico remained off the tourism grid for most travelers for decades. As a result, the canopy is as lush now as it might have been when pirates still trolled the Caribbean in search of plunder.

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comAnd the charm of Vieques is in the wildness of it. The verdure of the overgrowth and the ruddiness of the roads together offer the immediate sense of truly having left civilization. The unmarked and uninhabited beaches, the wild horses left behind by Spanish conquistadors some 500 years ago, the roosters and dogs and mongoose that populate every shady bend and beach let you know you had totally “dropped out”. It’s no wonder so many hippie ex-patriots and LGBT couples have found their way here. It’s a zen heaven for peace seekers and nature lovers. And now that the Navy is gone and the world has smartened up about paving  the planet, I suspect it will stay the same. It’s clear, commercialization has no business here.
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com

In fact, be prepared to pack everything you will need when venturing to the beach, as they are all completely spare of the tee-shirt and jewelry wallahs you’ll find on pretty much every other Saint Somewhere. You can’t even buy water and there are no toilets, nor are their formal parking areas save for the one at Sun Bay. You simply park your 4wd Jeep roadside and follow a path to one of
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com100 breathtaking coves, assuring you that the inconvenience of letting go your need to be herded and directed is totally worth a glimpse of those very spots buccaneers and privateers likely used as stopovers on their way to terrorize the colonies and the islands. Secluded, calm, rife with sea life for easy snorkeling and covered in wild overgrowth to create your own cabana, these beaches are the most beautiful and peaceful I’ve ever visited. Orchid and Blue, were runners up for #2 on the many we visited but Secret Beach, a recommendation from our property manager, Joe, was hands down the most perfect spot. We went there a few times. You should too. Guide to Vieques Beaches

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comAnd speaking of property managers and property, in general, Joe and pretty much everyone else we met assured us of two things – if you leave your Jeep unlocked on the deserted roads by the beaches, you won’t lose your windows. And if you deadbolt your rental, you won’t lose your belongings. Opportunist crime is the only you really need to worry about. The dirt from the unpaved roads can be a drag, but the hard hit on your credit card if your rental is vandalized is much worse. 

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comBut don't let the opportunist crime warning give you a bad taste. We found the Viequenses to be quite friendly and very helpful. Residing within the residential neighborhoods of Esperanza made for an inclusive feel. We walked daily from our rental La Vista Caribena to the local bakery and bodega for bread, beer and pastries. My parents rented a similar spot within walking distance, neighboring a local tour operator and a former chief of police. On several occasions we were assisted by the locals, one lead us, in his car, to the destination we couldn't find and another served us fried fish and johnny cakes on the beach as part of the Loaves and Fishes tradition from the Bible on Easter Sunday. We ate, shopped, drank and swam with the locals and found them all to be very, very nice folks.
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com 
In terms of getting around, though the beaches are a spread out, and the drive is slow because of the road conditions and the abundant wildlife you've got to watch for, our rental location was super convenient to the Malecon, Esperanza's boulevard bustling with local eateries, water sports, shops and nightlife, well, as bustling as this little village gets, which was just fine with us.You could go car-less and swim in the cove at the Malecon and have everything you needed within walking distance. We opted to rent because we wanted to see everything and the good beaches, well, they are worth the rental price to get you there.
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com
EATS
We cooked at home most nights while prepping beach lunches (grilling and swilling to the sound of the
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comjungle is not so rough). As travelers with kids, we typically get our groceries on the island but bring proteins along with us (I order from Omaha Steaks and hit McKinnon's in Danvers, MA). As long as the bags are sealed tight, not opened along the way and you keep ice packs inside, the freezer bag makes it solidly frozen to most island destinations. Foreign meat cuts can be a challenge, as we spoiled Americans are accustomed to having everything trimmed down to the easiest, leanest possible form. The more
remote the island, the more expensive and less convenient are the grocery items. Our grill was charcoal on this trip, which definitely slowed the process of preparing a meal - I'd rent this house again if they upgraded to gas.

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comThere's a big supermarket and the best fruit comes from the Fruit and Tire Store, no joke. The owner will lead you into what seems like a scene from a mob movie, a reefer truck driven straight up the the back of the bay full of beautiful produce. He isn't trying to ice you. He's just showing you the freshest wares.

The few times we did venture out (I am a foodie and I need to have SOMETHING to talk about in the way of local cuisine), we were very pleased. Here are our favorite spots for nosh:

Belly Buttons, in Esperanza
Owner Craig Button proudly displays his well-fed jolly girth and proclaims it the venue' namesake.The barbecue at Belly Buttons is THE BEST I'VE EVER HAD. Sticky ribs fell off the bone and smoky, sugary glazed chicken had us licking the bones clean. We washed it all down with coconutty Pain Killers (one of my favorite
island drinks).If you love bbq you will go back twice. We did. Breakfast here is the bomb, as well. Giant fried egg sandwiches are served on
slightly sweet local bread. For the kids, they have ice cream cones. It's also a great spot for people watching. We witnessed the filming of an episode from the HGTV House Hunters International, the second time they've covered the island. We recognized the stars of the first in the audience that night. I'd run into them at the market as well. It's a very small island.

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comBuen Provecho, in Isabella Segunde
This is GOURMET HEAVEN for foodies on an out-island. The island's gourmet provisioner offers fruit, bread, sauces, house made charcuterie and house cured sandwich meats. They also carry wine and have an espresso and cocktail bar within the shop so you can sip whiles you wait. Sandwiches here are the tastiest, most eclectic beach lunch on the island. I LOVED my lunch.

La Viequense Deli, in Isabella Segunde
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comThis bakery is the source for that sweet fresh local bread you'll find all over the island as toast, crostini and for sandwiches. The faint sugary quality is not so pronounced as in Portuguese sweet bread or Nissu, or Anadama. It's far more subtle, which makes it suitable for both sweet and savory meals. Sandwiches here are also terrific for para llevar lunching. Note that they only take cash, they do have an ATM and there are two separate lines - one for ordering food and the other just for bread, which presumably services the island's entire restaurant industry.

Chicken King, on the road to Isabella
Always packed day and night, Chicken King is like homemade Kentucky Fried with all the Caribbean bbq accompaniments. I don't know what the seasoning is, but it takes Finger Lickin Good to a whole new level. We grabbed a bucket to share over a game of dominoes at the house and although we all hit it hard, there was still enough in the fridge at bedtime to lure one or two of us from our rest to grab another piece. They also have really tasty ice cream.

vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com
DO
Esperanza Riding Company
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.com
THIS DRESS (on the left)
The world's most beautiful equestrians offer the island's most comprehensive instructional tour on horseback. Our group felt very well informed and well taken care of as this trio led us on a 3 hour tour of beach and jungle. And what a way to spend Easter morning! We hit a black sand beach, mucked through gullies and climbed above the canopy. The male guide looked and sounded just like Matthew Mcconaughey. And his name was Matt McCoy. T-shirts available for sale befit the cowgirl beauties with slogans like, "Well behaved women seldom make history". I wouldn't ride anywhere else. Just don't.

Stand Up Paddleboard/Snorkeling
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comOur SUP trip was a bit of a fiasco, through no fault of the family snorkle and SUP rental company who's name I CANNOT REMEMBER because of the PTSD I'm experiencing from that day that set us up in Esperanza. Walking down from our villa to avoid having to resolve for an unlocked car and an expensive-to-replace electronic jeep key, we brought our cash and the rental key in a sandwich bag, which my husband promptly dropped, in the ocean. The paddling was fun, if choppy up till I needed to obtain
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comsnorkeling gear to scour, with the help of 20 young Viequenses, the cove in front of the Malecon. Alas, the search for Los Llaves Perdidos was futile, much to the chagrin of one toothy smiling youth who requested "one hundred money" as reward for the return of our keys and the $40 that sank with them. Fortunately, the island is small and everyone knows everyone so the rental shop keepers knew how to get in touch with our property managers (our phones were also locked in the villa), who met us within 20 minutes of calling the search quits. Bad day, nice people. An opportunity to experience human kindness. I'll call it a win.

SHOP
Funky Beehive
I want to go back to Funky Beehive just to buy stuff. Super hip, island comfy gorgeous clothing in this sweet little shop operated by a former east coast school teacher. The dress I bought here was around $50 and it gets more oohs and ahs than most other ropas in my closet. And, the owner is an absolute doll.

Lucky 1 Pallet
vieques puerto rico review jennifer amero 90secondsandvelvet.blogspot.comRe-purposed pallets become funky furniture. The owner is from California and her work made me take about 2000 pictures. Not convenient for shipping but if I lived here my whole space would be tricked out with her work. I'd DEFINITELY stop by.

GETTING THERE
Jet Blue is our totes fave for Caribbean travel. Several direct flights run from Boston to San Juan daily. From there it's a choice. Either stay in San Juan overnight, grab and early taxi to the Lanchas ferry dock in Fajardo and prepare to wait in lines designed for cattle until the very rough crossing on the island's only ferry can be made for a couple bucks (maybe $5 each way). Here's a link with information and complaints. Read it and then fly.Fajardo to Vieques Ferry


OR grab a charter or small commercial flight out of San Juan for considerably more but spare the cost of taxi and hotel and precious wasted vacation days you'll spend in transit on either end.. Several small airlines operate between the islands and chartering often means you pay the same price but pick your times.

 Airlines that fly from Puerto Rico to Vieques
 I HIGHLY recommend spending the money to fly. We took the ferry over after a couple days visiting the historical sites on the main land and knew before we docked that we were flying back. Life is short. Vacation is shorter. YOLO.





Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Emerald Rae at Beauport Sleeper McCann - this Friday at 6:30pm

Just a lil' plug for my amazingly talented cousin Emerald Rae who rarely graces Cape Ann with her beautiful music these days (she's kind of a big deal). But THIS FRIDAY she plays on the water, at the breathtakingly beautiful ocean side historic property Beauport Sleeper McCann House and you really should go...

Fabulous Fridays: Concerts by the Sea (Emerald Rae)

Friday, July 11, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
emerald rae if only i could fly coverBeauport, the Sleeper-McCann House, 75 Eastern Point Boulevard, Gloucester, Mass.

$20 Historic New England members, $30 nonmembers

beauport sleeper mccann houseA summer Friday evening concert is the perfect ending to a long week. Enjoy our first-ever concert series, with Gloucester-based artists, focusing on early twentieth-century American music with Celtic and Scottish origins as well as favorites from American singer-songwriters such as Cole Porter. The Beauport gardens overlooking Gloucester Harbor provide a tranquil and beautiful setting for this series of early-evening performances. Chairs and refreshments are provided. Come between 5:00 and 5:30 p.m. to enjoy an abbreviated house tour.

Price: $30.00
Registration is required. Please call 978-283-0800 for more information. Purchase tickets now

ABOUT EMERALD RAE
Growing up with mom and dad in a country-rock band, Emerald had a taste for the stage from a small age. Hailing from America’s oldest seaport, Gloucester, Emerald found herself venturing to Boston as a young fiddler, entranced by the hard-driving rhythms of Cape Breton and Scottish traditions. Each summer she followed the traditional path back to Cape Breton Island that so many other Bostonians had traveled before her. At 18, she took home the grand prize at the US Scottish Fiddle Championships! As her studies in Scottish music deepened, she moved to Glasgow to study musicology, but it was her time at the Berklee College of Music that connected to her new worlds of fiddling. Collaborating with fellow fiddlers Flynn Cohen, Liz Simmons and Mariel Vandersteel in the popular folk group Annalivia, Emerald toured also with the Cathie Ryan Band. Over time, Emerald made a name for herself as a solo fiddler totally adept not only in Cape Breton and Scottish traditions, but in Irish and old-time as well. All of these influences are heard on her new album, If Only I Could Fly. Her music here. http://www.emeraldrae.com/music



Shear Madness - An Hilarious Whodunit That Changes Every Night


"Isabella Churney was nuts. She was taking Viagra. She heard it would make an old pianist perform better".

So who murdered the crazy old concert pianist? Truth be told, in Marilyn Abrams and Bruce Jordan's production "Shear Madness" at the Charles Playhouse on Stuart Street in Boston, it could, quite frankly be anyone on the stage.  

That's because Shear Madness is an interactive whodunit where the audience's participation and interrogation, perceptiveness and majority vote determines the killer, so it literally changes with the show. 

And the options are abundant. Barbara (Boston Magazine's Best of Boston, Actress 2013's Celeste Oliva) the ambitious potential lesbian love interest might be the heir to Isabella's fortune. She does spend alot of time alone with Isabella, "Lesbionic? Do you think they were gay robots?" and with limited education, evidence by her assertion that she'd like to one day visit the countries of "France, Italy and Europe", Mrs. Churney might be her ticket out of the basement salon.

And speaking of the salon, Tony (Jordan Ahnquist) rents the space from Mrs. Churney whose incessant banging of piano keys makes him hysterically irate. His over-the-top emotions punctuate his, ahem, fancy flair, as does his cache of colorful one-liners. "That towel is hot, like Channing Tatum hot!" Given his explosive nature,  and his disappearance at the time of the event, which he attributes to a fear of fire,  "I thought the building was on fire and I was worried about my cats, Bill and Hillary. I told Hillary to run but she said not till 2016. Bill kept chasing his tail", and with the discovery of stylist scissors in the trash at the crime scene, he looks as guilty as Barbara.

But there's also a good case that it might be Eddie (Joe Ruscio), the seedy antiques dealer who appears to be simultaneously scamming the old eccentric out of her piano and courting Churney's alleged lover, Barbara. So the audience wonders, are Barbara and Eddie in it together?

Then there's salon client, old Mrs Shubert (Mary Klug) who is peculiar and suspicious and knows the artist personally. Shubert makes a secretive phone call after the crime is committed, but she claims to have called her butler and  lover, Frederick who entertains her while, "Mr. Shubert is in France. He's staying In the Paris Hilton. It's crowded but quite comfortable". What's more, Mrs. Shubert keeps trying to get out of the beauty parlor during interrogations and off to the airport "I've got to make it to the airport and I don't want to be late for my pat down". She's an easy culprit, and an absolute riot - I am very much looking forward to seeing Ms. Klug in the upcoming Whitey Bulger movie with  Johnny Depp where she plays Mrs. Bulger.

And even the (oh-so Boston) police, Mikey and Nick (Joseph Marrella and Christopher Tarjan) can't quite explain WHY they are at Ms Churney's home that day BEFORE she is murdered, though they do entertain local and visiting audiences with endless allusions to the bean town scene "Jesus, Mary and Bill Belichick". I particularly like the Boston-isms - they speak to the locals while making tourists feel like they are in on something. Well played.

The cast performances were positively side-splitting and the injection of friendly off-color banter on and off stage set a tone for no-holds-barred hilarity that audiences will enjoy again and again. I won't tell you who did it this time, but it wouldn't matter, because next time it'll be totally different.

ABOUT THE SHOW

Shear Madness" is one of the most popular entertainments in the world, delighting audiences night after night with its unique blend of madcap improvisation and spine-tickling mystery.

This unique comedy-whodunit takes place today in the "Shear Madness" hairstyling salon and is chock full of up-to-the-minute spontaneous humor. During the course of the action, a murder is committed and the audience gets to spot the clues, question the suspects, and solve the funniest mystery in the annals of crime.The outcome is never the same, which is why many audience members return again and again to the scene of the mayhem.

Voted "Best Comedy of the Year" seven times by the Boston Globe and recipient of the title "Best Play of the Year" by both the Chicago Sun-Times and the Philadelphia Enquirer, "Shear Madness" has also received the Raven Award from the Mystery Writers of America and has been inducted into the Comedy Hall of Fame, the first play ever to receive that accolade. "Shear Madness" is listed in the Guiness Book of World Records as the longest running play in the history of the USA.


The flagship Boston company has given birth to 42 productions in the US and "Shear Madness" has been translated into 10 foreign languages, playing worldwide in a host of cities including Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Madrid, Paris, Rejkavik, Rome, Tel Aviv, Melbourne, Johannesburg and Seoul.

Over 10.6 million people worldwide have joined in the fun, and while no one
has actually died laughing, some are still rolling in the aisles.


TICKET AND PERFORMANCE INFORMATION - BOSTON
Tuesday-Friday 8PM
Saturday 6 and 9PM
Sunday 3 and 7PM
http://www.shearmadness.com/buy-tickets.html

Thursday, June 12, 2014

I Like to Drink Beer on a Sailboat

Sunset, Fisherman's Brew and the Schooner Thomas E. Lannon all at a special rate. What more could you ask? Two of my favorite local businesses,  some of my favorite local business people join forces to bring you an event not to be missed. 

Schooner Lannon and the Cape Ann Brewing Company (Gloucester's own microbrewery
and the makers of Fisherman's Brew, a Lannon favorite) are again joining forces on Tuesday night, June 24th. 

Join us for a sunset schooner sail from 6:30-8:30 p.m. and enjoy three Cape Ann Brewing Company adult beverages, all at a reduced
price of $30/person. You must be 21 years of age or older to join us on this sail.

The regular price for an adult ticket, without beverages is $40, so this is a great deal. You can book online at
http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=ECt5w&m=K1quA3SQx4hPqG&b=HWtnq0WIVzI9K3ioggVH9w. Or you can call us at
(978) 281-6634 to reserve your spots. This trip has always sold out quickly, so make your reservations today.

Read more about Cape Ann Brewing Co. at
http://clicks.aweber.com/y/ct/?l=ECt5w&m=K1quA3SQx4hPqG&b=q3Ic.DtkhZvBGyb51tSGUw. The Brew Pub will be open
for food and drinks after the sail and is just four doors away from the Lannon dock.

What You Should Do While I see Shear Madness at The Charles Playhouse

shear madness, charles playhouse, boston, theater, interactive theater, blog night, media, jennifer ameroBe jealous. Be very jealous. My sweets and I scored press passes to Shear Madness at the Charles Playhouse.  (This venue is also home to Blue Man Group). Every now'n again PR pros, chefs, owners and promoters shoot me tix and grub to write up shows and meals so all of you can know where the cool stuff is happening. Other times, most of the time, I just write because I'm super excited about the cool stuff and I feel you should be, too.

I haven't seen Shear Madness since I was in college. I remember the interactive whodunit set in a fabulous salon as riotously funny. I can't wait to  see how the show has changed. Also, we get to hang with the cast afterward for beverages. I am hoping that they are as much fun off stage as they are on. I don't think this is a long shot. OF COURSE, there'll be a review and no, you can't come with me.

Here's what you CAN do on the north shore and beyond while I'm whooping it up at the cast after party. I suggest you bring your father. It's kind of a big weekend for the old guy, after all:

Local Stuff: 

My dad loves music, doesn't craft and doesn't run. If I were home we would probably do the reggae cruise. I suspect he will probably just go to Good Harbor Beach instead.
oucester, gimme sound, Mile 21, The Toasters, Ska, Reggea, jennifer amero

Reggae SKA Cruise

THE TOASTERS ~ with special guests MILE 21
Cost $35 in Advance
$40 at the Dock
Board 7:00pm - Sail 8:00PM

Dance, dine and cruise historic Gloucester Harbor with international Reggae and Ska Pioneers, THE TOASTERS and a very special reunion of local favorite, MILE 21! Your ticket includes this special appearance of The Toasters on their 2014 world tour PLUS a Gloucester Harbor Cruise and Party Buffet featuring Seaport Grille's world famous Lobster Rolls! For tickets and more information click: www.gimmesound.com

Mile Market 1, The Bridge, Strawberry Festival, jennifer amero

Strawberry Festival at MM1

FREE parking! FREE admission! FAMILY-FRIENDLY for FATHER'S DAY WEEKEND! Farmers market, alpacas & miniature horses from Marshall's Farm Stand. More than 50 local vendors from The Bridge. Great food from Mile Marker One. Great drinks from Ryan & Wood, Inc., Distilleries. LIVE music & performers. Huge kids zone with face painters, bouncy house & puppies from Cape Ann Animal Aid. Raffles, giveaways, and so much more. Save the date & help us kick off an amazing summah!!!

North Shore YMCA FATHER'S DAY 5K & 10K

SUNDAY, JUNE 15, 2014 8:30AM
STARTING LINE: ROCKPORT HIGH SCHOOL
24 JERDENS LANE, ROCKPORT, MA 01966


Entry Fees Ages 14 + 13 & Under
Pre Race: $24 $14
Day Of Race: $28 $19
This is one of the most beautiful race courses in the United States. You will run along the Rockport’s rocky shore past three lighthouses, several islands and Rockport Harbor, with its world famous Motif #1. Most runners don neckties in honor of dad. It's a beautiful course, a fun family event and quite a sight to see. Register

Off the Island

Remember when we used to just drink beer and nobody felt like we had to run from zombies or through paint or to scale walls and wade through foam pits? Well, those days are over. Now,in addition to catching a buzz, everybody's running 5Ks and supporting causes, then drinking beer, better beer, craft beer. We've matured. The nice thing about the race scene is that often they are activities we can do with our kids, and our young for their age parents (my dad still kicks my *ss weekly on the tennis court. He's 63). Also, nobody judges the mommies and runts in the beer tent if Mommy is covered in mud and blood and zombie face paint. She's earned it. Plus, the beer tastes sweeter for the effort. Here's a fun 5K you can do with or without dad and it's on beautiful Spectacle Island: 

Spectacle Island Road Race with Harpoon and Boloco

Take in panoramic views of the harbor and downtown Boston from beautiful and historic Spectacle Island during our exciting Flag Day 5K road race! All proceeds benefit Boston Harbor Island Alliance, the non-profit partner of the Boston Harbor Islands National Park area. Race day festivities include 5K run, half-mile kids' fun run, field day competitions, a picnic lunch from our friends at Harpoon and Boloco, post-race yoga classes, kids' activities, and more! Click here for more information and online registration.

And so maybe you don't want to run, you can stroll, unless of course, somebody opens the alligator cage, then I suggest you run.

zoo, father's day, stone zoo, franklin park zoo, boston, jennifer amero

Dads are free at the zoo

Give dad a wild Father’s Day at the zoo Sunday and save money while you’re at it. That’s because all dads are free on Father’s Day at the Franklin Park Zoo in Boston and Stone Zoo in Stoneham!




Or maybe you want to cruise, that's an option, too. 

Cruise Boston Harbor

odyssey, father's day, spirit of boston, cruise, boston, restaurant, boston, jennifer amero
Spend Sunday cruising around Boston Harbor with your dad. Book dad a Father’s Day cruise on the Odyssey and he’ll enjoy gorgeous views of the city and live entertainment while he dines. Father’s Day brunch is $69.90 per adult, $41.95 per child age 3 to 12 and dinner is $74.90 per adult, $44.95 per child age 3 to 12. Or book a “Boston Harbor Father’s Day Lunch Cruise” aboard the Spirit of Boston, which will include lunch, an ice cream sundae bar, and goodie bags for the kids, for $54.90 per adult, $32.95 per child age 3 to 12.



Bring both your dads, and take the "T". 

Boston Pride Festival

Saturday 12-6, City Hall Plaza
Mary Lambert, A Great Big World, Alex Newell, JD Samson & Men, and Jeanie Tracy will headline the Boston Pride Festival being held on Saturday, June 14th from noon to 6 pm at Boston’s City Hall Plaza. The Festival is the last stop on the Boston Pride Parade route and will host musical entertainment, the Family Zone, the Main Stage Lounge, Artisan Avenue and over 130 vendors.

More information and details for Boston Pride’s 2014 Pride Week can be found at www.bostonpride.org.


Because I aim to please all of my readers, I offer you a sit-down activity you can also do with dad or dads. Also, you'll be watching a movie about candy, so that's the total opposite of running or climbing. I'd pick this one. It's the weekend, after all.

outdoor theater, summer in the city, boston, restaurant, boston, jennifer amero

Boston Harbor Hotel's Summer in the City Series Kickoff 

Summer in the City kicks off for the 2014 season this Thursday with Blues Barge featuring Jeff Pitchell. Friday night, catch Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. This year's line up of tunes and flicks is definitely worth checking out. Schedule Here.
70 Rowes Wharf | Boston, MA | 02110 | (617) 856-7744 | www.bhh.com

And finally, sitting with less driving, and a show with no food. You can't have it all. That wouldn't be fair. Our NSMT puts on fantabulous performances very close to home, and every year the show lineup gets better. I haven't seen this one yet, but I often visit and review their musicals and I am always delighted. If you want to see a real review I wrote, click the link to: Tap Dancing Drag Queens. Otherwise, keep reading, there's more.

heater, nsmt, anything goes, bill hanney, music theater, beverly, jennifer amero"Anything Goes"

North Shore Music Theatre
62 Dunham Road, Beverly
www.NSMT.org

All aboard for a saucy and splendid production of one of the greatest musicals in theater history, Cole
Porter's first-class musical comedy, ANYTHING GOES! Romance is in the air on the ocean liner SS American - but it's far from smooth sailing for the passengers. Will love prevail for a charismatic nightclub singer, a beautiful debutante, her snooty aristocrat fiancé and a stowaway in disguise? Its nonstop laughs and hijinks on the high seas in this show packed with spectacular dance numbers and many unforgettable Cole Porter songs.

Ok so you now have PLENTY of ideas of cool things to do with pops. You have ZERO excuses for buying him a new necktie or an argyle vest, unless, of course, he asked for them, in which case you probably SHOULD get him on the reggae cruise, cuz that's lame.

Happy Father's Day

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Food News, Foodies and Flicks Unite, And a Big List of Free Family Fun

Ok, so I accept that this is a pretty random list of topics but they are all cool fresh, new news items that appeal to folks like me, and hopefully you. As a foodie on the quest for new eats that other foodies are talking about and a parent looking to jack up our summer road trip schedule with some fun and culture, I am pretty excited about these announcements about stuff to do and see and EAT. Read on, then start making your schedule to get out and do stuff:

Free Culture Here

Highland Street Foundation Funds Free Fridays All Summer Long

Boston Magazine just posted this MONSTER list of free admission opportunities at cool museums and parks throughout the commonwealth. Made possible by a generous grant from the Highland Street Foundation, an organization that has given out some $150 million to more than 900 nonprofits, says executive director Blake Jordan.  This year, the foundation has arranged 66 free days, with new partners including Historic Deerfield, Falmouth Museums on the Green, and the Griffin Photography Museum.

Here's the complete list of FREE ADMISSION venues and dates
FRIDAY, JUNE 27, 2014
Franklin Park Zoo
Cape Cod Maritime Museum
Worcester Art Museum
Tanglewood
The Sports Museum
Mass MoCA
MIT Museum
FRIDAY, JULY 4, 2014
Heritage Museums & Gardens
Edward Gorey House
Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival
Amelia Park Children’s Museum
Falmouth Museums on the Green
FRIDAY, JULY 11, 2014
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum
Peabody Essex Museum
Worcester Historical Museum
Fruitlands Museum
Cape Cod Children’s Museum
New England Historical Genealogical Society
Pilgrim Hall Museum
FRIDAY, JULY 18, 2014
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Ocean Explorium
The Eric Carle Museum
Larz Anderson Auto Museum
Springfield Museums
Mass Audubon’s Boston Nature Center
Sandwich Glass Museum
FRIDAY, JULY 25, 2014
The Freedom Trail Foundation
Battleship Cove
Children’s Museum in Easton
Tower Hill Botanic Garden
Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University
Cape Cod Museum of Art
Danforth Art
FRIDAY, AUGUST 1, 2014
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Commonwealth Shakespeare Company
American Textile History Museum
The Discovery Museums
Hancock Shaker Village
Concord Museum
Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center
FRIDAY, AUGUST 8, 2014
Boston Harbor Islands National Park
Clark Art Institute
Wenham Museum
USS Constitution Museum
Children’s Museum at Holyoke
Volleyball Hall of Fame
Fuller Craft Museum
FRIDAY, AUGUST 15, 2014
The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston
Plimoth Plantation
Garden in the Woods
Museum of Russian Icons
Fitchburg Art Museum
Historic Deerfield
Reagle Music Theatre
FRIDAY, AUGUST 22, 2014
Boston Children’s Museum
Museum of African American History
New Bedford Whaling Museum
Old Manse, Trustees of Reservations
Berkshire Museum
Emily Dickinson Museum
FRIDAY, AUGUST 29, 2014
Buttonwood Park Zoo
EcoTarium
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History
Norman Rockwell Museum
The Mount: Edith Wharton’s Home
Griffin Photography Museum

Flicks, Food, Family and Fun

The Andelman Brothers Just Bought the Mendon Drive-In
So what's cooler than a drive-in? One owned by the hi-larious brothers from the Phantom Gourmet. Mendon Drive-in is in the area near Gillet Stadium and Patriot Place (which has a Five Wits interactive mystery experience), Southwick Zoo and the Comcast Center. Those are just a few reasons to venture for a few days, even if it IS off the beaten path for many readers. because you can TOTALLY make a road trip of it. Think zoo by day, drive in by night. I'm very excited to check it out.

Carnie Food Gets Feted

Food Truck Festivals of New England Announces Summer Events
This is one of my FAVORITE reasons to drive over the bridge. Rows and rows of good food served on paper plates in a festival environment is the adult version of my DeadTour days,but without the, ahem, 3 day hangover. I'm thoroughly looking forward to getting my grub on. I'll chalk it up to research because someday I am totally retiring to an island and opening my own food truck. For now, I'll dream, and eat. Check out their site here: Food Truck Festivals of NE


Food the Rocks

HARD ROCK CAFE ROLLS OUT A BRAND NEW MENU
Having been the DOM for a north shore restaurant group with a major tendency to pay homage to music in branding their concepts, I am all about what Hard Rock is up to. I promoted places like Minglewood Tavern and Maggie's Farm. I get how powerful tying music and the memories that music evokes is in getting diners connected to your "space". Raised by legit Woodstock nation parents who had vinyl going every day of my life, music is as much a part of my daily routine as toothpaste or food, for that matter. I LOVE the hard Rock brand because they capture cuture of music within the experience of breaking bread. When their PR firm sent this over, I knew I'd write it up. I loved Hard Rock before. I can't wait to check out the new eats.
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Hard Rock Cafe’s menu takes center stage as the brand rolls out a newly redesigned menu, following more than 14 months of culinary development, intensive research and guest evaluation.  

With a total of 180 venues in 56 countries, including 140 cafes, 19 hotels and 9 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognized companies. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. 

Officially launching on Wednesday, March 26, 2014, Hard Rock Cafe locations across the United States and Europe will begin serving a host of new offerings and updated fan favorites to more than 92 million guests who enter its doors each year.

In updating plates, glasses and serving dishes, the brand worked with 14 different suppliers and brought in hundreds of patterns, shapes, sizes and colors to enhance the visual appeal of each dish.
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Hard Rock Cafe’s new and improved menu features Hard Rock’s authentic American, made-from-scratch cuisine, a commitment to fresh ingredients and the signature flair that guests can only get at Hard Rock. For more information about Hard Rock Cafe and the new menu, visit www.HardRock.com.
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You Can See a Show Without Starving or Apologizing

 Del Frisco's announce new Pre and Post-Theater Prix Fixe Menus
And if you've been reading any of my past posts, you know I also love live theater. And what's theater without a tasty meal and a pre or post game cocktail. If you're like me, I prefer to know for sure that I am in control of both the timing and the cost of my meal when there's a show and a very strict usher to reckon with. That doesn't mean that my night out at a show will ever include a quicky cheapy trip to see the Clown, the King or the Colonel, so I'm pretty stoked when an eatery near a theater creates a menu that is both price and time controlled to work around my rush to get into my seat. The PR folks for Del Frisco's sent this over and it's fully worth a share for those of you snatching up tickets to any of the great shows in town.
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No one does steak like Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House.  Located at 250 Northern Ave, Suite 200 Boston, MA. Del Frisco’s serves up flawless cuisine that’s bold and delicious, an extensive award-winning wine list and a level of service that reminds guests that thy’re the boss.  

Del Frisco's brand new pre-threatre and post-theatre menus, which launched this week at the Seaport steakhouse. The three-course prix fixe menus will be available pre-theatre 4-6pm ($49.49) and post-theatre after 10pm ($39.95).

The Del Frisco's theatre dinner menus are perfect for guests attending shows nearby, or looking to enjoy a nice dinner at the Seaport before heading to a show at any venue around the city.  With the new Cirque Du Soleil "Amaluna" show opening up in the Seaport next week, as well as dozens of summer concerts at Blue Hills Bank Pavilion and shows Laugh Boston, the Seaport is a top destination for evening entertainment. Guests must show ticket/ticket stub to server.