For the second time in less than 24 hours, Gloucester residents and officials gathered Saturday celebrate the restoration and revitalization of a structure that had long seen better days.
And while those who joined to salute completion of the project to save and restore the Lanes Cove Fish Shack Saturday didn’t come close to approaching the 3,500 or so who turned out for Friday night’s gala reopening of Newell Stadium, the event marked no less a cooperative venture between residents and city officials to ensure that a piece of the city’s and Lanesville’s history would standing for future generations.
That wasn’t the case for what was once called Morey’s Fish Shack. Just over two years ago, Building Inspector William Sanborn understandably found that the shack, once used for storing fishermen’s nets during the village’s fishing heydays, was “unsafe and dangerous” and in such dire shaped he could not even authorize repairing it.
A corps of Lanesville residents and others, however, were not about to let the fish shack and their village’s heritage go. Working with city officials, who formed a building committee, they put together a plan that, thanks to private fund-raising efforts and work by the city’s Department of Public Works, came to fruition with Saturday’s celebration.
As we noted last week, the tangible results of projects like this may be new Newell Stadium and, on a lesser scale, a new Lanes Cove fish shack. But the bigger picture should show us all what can indeed happen when residents and their government officials actually pull together in the same direction, and work on the same page.
Let’s hope both of these projects stand as models of many more such efforts to come.