, Gloucester, MA

November 23, 2012

Rockport Ramblings: Town gearing up for Christmas events

Rockport Ramblings
James Niedzinski

---- — A variety of Christmas activities are returning to Rockport, and The Christmas in Rockport Committee is looking for donations to help ease the cost of decorations.

The annual tree lighting is set for Saturday, Dec. 1, shortly after Santa’s arrival. Mail or drop off donations at the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce, 33 Commercial St., Gloucester.

The Rockport Nativity Pageant Committee is also seeking community donations in support of Rockport’s 67th annual Christmas Nativity Pageant, scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 22 at 5 p.m. Contributions on behalf of the pageant may be made care of the Granite Savings Bank, 247 Main St., Rockport.

Carolers are also needed for the tree lighting ceremony. Choral director Wendy Betts and the Dock Square Carolers will be helping Santa sing Jingle Bells and other holiday music during Christmas in Rockport.

A caroling rehearsal is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 1, at 2:15 p.m. at the Rockport Art Association, 12 Main St. Anyone seeking further information may email or call 978-546-7108.

‘Quiz Show’ students advance

Rockport High School students will compete on the televised “High School Quiz Show” in the spring after the school’s team qualified as one of the top 16 in the state in the first rounds of the WGBH TV competition.

Last year, the Rockport team won its first match in the quarterfinals, and achieved a never-before-seen tie against Hamilton-Wenham, only to bow out in a sudden-death round.

This year’s team includes sophomore Corey Silver, senior Evan Razdan, sophomore Quenton Hurst, and junior Alexandra Legendre, with alternates sophomore Oliver Herman and sophomore Nate Allen.

Unique ornaments at RAA

The Rockport Art Association is holding its 18th annual ornament fund-raising sale — while the ornaments last.

The popular benefit for the historic art association features small hand-painted squares by the member artists.

The sale started Friday and will continue until the one-of-a-kind ornaments sell out. For more information, visit

Historical open house

The Sandy Bay Historical Society of Rockport will hold its annual holiday open house on Sunday, Dec. 2, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Sewall-Scripture House Museum, 40 King St.

Guests will have a chance to explore the historic 1832 home with its permanent exhibits in the keeping room, children’s room, victorian parlor and marine room. There are also on display paintings by distinguished Rockport and New England artists. The open house is free and open to everyone.

‘Tree-lighting’ dinner

A “Tree-Lighting Dinner” event, sponsored by Rockport Rotary Club, is also slated for next Saturday, Dec. 1, with tickets available now.

The holiday event, running between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., takes place at The Fish Shack Restaurant in Dock Square, where patrons can watch the tree lighting, enjoy Christmas carols, and join Rotary members for dinner.

The dinner includes clam chowder or creamy chicken stew served in bread bowls, salad, dessert, and a beverage at the cost of $10, both in advance or at the door. Children may order a spaghetti and meatballs dinner with dessert and a beverage for $5 per ticket.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Rockport Rotary Club’s scholarship fund, and other community service projects. For advance tickets contact or

UU church craft fair

The Unitarian Universalist Society of Rockport will host Holiday Craft Fair next Saturday, Dec. 1, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the vestry of the church at 4 Cleaves St.

Among the items featured will be fresh-baked treats, local handmade crafts, jewelry, knitted hats and scarves, and potted plants.

The church’s thrift shop will be open for that day only and, in addition to the store’s usual stock, gently used holiday decorations and ornaments will be available. There will also be an art exhibition of original watercolor paintings by local artist Judy Metcalfe.

Staff Writer Marjorie Nesin contributed to this column.

James Niedzinski is the beat reporter for the towns of Rockport, Essex and Manchester. He can be reached at 978-283-700, x3455 or at

Marjorie Nesin, who formerly served as beat writer covering Rockport, Essex and Manchester, is now city reporter covering Gloucester. She can be reached at 978-283-7000, x3451, or at