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July 12, 2013     Post-Gazette
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POST-GAZETTE, JULY 12, 2013 Page 7 b9 ,.Ingela Cornacchio Local Salem resident Bobby Cook dressed as Uncle Sam closes the s ow in the Salem 4 of July day parade. (Photo by Angela Cornacchio) Socially Scene Reviewed .... The 4~ of July is one of those holidays that brings many events and almost every suburb has their own rendition of fireworks. Last year I was blessed with a South Boston roof top view to enjoy the esplanade show. This year I made the trip to Salem and spent time with family that roped me in with the mention of ice cold Sangria from the home- made Cornacchia Wine. Salem is a citY with a lot of rich history and breath- taking spots as it is also right on the water. I was sold with the option that the day of the 44 I would spend pool- side in the peaceful woods, what more could a city girl ask for. Just before I made it to my relaxing getaway we followed family tradition and at- tended the Salem Willows Parade. I learned quite quickly that it was a tradi- tion for many as we walked down Columbus Avenue where everyone was con- versing and saying hello. The homes left me speech- less with the old Victorian style and history as many had widow's walks on the roof where wives use to sit and watch for their fisherman husbands to come home. We settled in at a cul de sac at the end of Columbus Ave., and I didn't think it could get any better but the scenery these families en- joy on a daily basis was un- believable. We were located where the parade would end and the "contestants" were to be judged. The Salem Willows Parade is over 100 years running and consists of local fami- lies, groups, school clubs and the best in show for 2013 was a group of mothers that put together a "Vote for Your Fa- vorite Mother" act that was just hilarious. There was a very touching moment when a car cruised by, blowing bubbles with a picture of the loveliest woman nicknamed "Bubbles." She was a Salem resident who had recently passed away and was being honored. I got a little insight on her; she was a lively swing dancer back in the early '30s and '40s with Cab Calloway at the Willows Ca- sino (still intact but now an arcade that is aging itself). I was warned going into the festivities that it can be quite the show and not al- ways politically correct. It was all I was told it would be: family fun, crazy partici- pants, laughs and of course candy thrown to the kids. I felt so much unity through the parade. After the parade, my fam- ily took me the roundabout way so I got the opportunity to walk through the Willows. Salem is just a short hop from Boston and for anyone who has not been, I recom- mend it ten times over! It was preserved with such ob- vious community pride and when I actually arrived at Willows Park (which is right on the water) I couldn't be- lieve my eyes. It was every- thing most remember from their childhood; wooden walkways, big flowing willow trees and at the remnants of a track from back in 1880's was a train from the Willows that rode straight into Boston. I was so blessed to indulge in the best pop- corn around from Hobb's. It also holds rich family tradi- tion as I came to find out that generation after gen- eration of my family have worked there. From there we happily left the unbearable heat and headed to what seemed to be the best pool I have ever floated in for six hours straight. It must have been about eight when we left to get back to Salem in time for the fireworks. We were able to see the amazing display right from my uncle's house off the river. He filled me in on what a special production that was as well. Down at Pickering Warf there was a 40 piece timed orchestra playing along with the dis- play. Boston is ranked in the top five for firework presen- tations but Salem definitely had a ranking of their own. This heartwarming pro- duction of the 44 of July that Salem puts on, made me feel more patriotism than I may ever have. They put a true definition to it with the way the community comes together, supports each other and puts on a show! The Boston Children Chorus will open up the Outside the Box Festival on July 13th at the Boston Common. (Photo courtesy of outsidethebox.org) There were so many things to see and explore in our neighbors' territory and even though it was vacation I was sure t'o get some info to bring you all to see in up- coming issues, stay tuned to Socially Scene. Nine Days of Entertain- ment .... Outside the Box is putting on a festival that will highlight food, music and fun. It will run from July 134 -204 at the Boston Common and July 184-21St at Boston City Hall Plaza. A revolutionary event is happening this July in the heart of Boston, one that promises to unite neighbor- hoods, citizens, and. artistic communities throughout the city. From July 134 to 21st, the first annual performing arts festival will turn public spaces like the Boston Com- mon and City Hall Plaza into performance spaces, with over 200 events showcasing the best of Boston and Mas- sachusetts. And one of the things that makes Outside the Box so revolutionary? Every event is completely FREE! In true festival tradition, Outside the Box not only aims to unify the commu- nity, but to make art acces- sible to everyone. From the- ater to dance, the symphony to independent bands, clas- sic to cutting-edge -- what- you have to do is show up, and let the diverse program- ming do the rest. "Our region is already known for its universities, hospitals and for its history," says founder and philan- thropist Ted Cutler, whose lifelong dream has been to bring his hometown a world- class, citywide arts festival. "It's my hope that we add the arts to what people think of when they think of Boston." The events will start off with a performance at 1:00 PM -- BOSTON COM- MON: PARK STREET STAGE on July 134 from the Boston Children's Choir. The Bos- ton Children's Chorus (BCC) was founded by civic leader Hubie Jones, who has la- bored for almost five years to address the social problems facing Boston's underserved children and communities. In 2001, Mr. Jones experi- enced a performance by the nationally renowned Chicago Children's Choir. He returned home deter- mined to replicate this inno- vative program, as there were no organizations in Boston that effectively com- bined a mission for artistic excellence with an agenda for social change. The Bos- ton Children's Chorus was launched in October of 2003. A dynamic arts organiza- tion committed to developing youth leadership through ever your preference, Out- musical excellence, BCC's /f DIAMONDS side the Box will intrigue medium is song, and it is | R 0 J[. E X | you, draw you in, and intro- [ ESTATE JEWELRY [ duce you to new talent. 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