, Gloucester, MA

October 4, 2013

Candidate forums, debates dot next week's calendar

By Times Staff
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Gloucester’s election campaigns, already well underway with signs dotting the city’s streets and yards and candidates reaching out to meet and greet voters, will swing into a higher gear next week with three forums and/or debates touching on all of the city’s contested races.

The first will come Monday night, when a group of West Gloucester residents led by Glen Bresnahan hosts a candidates’ forum featuring the Ward 5 City Council race, the candidates for councilor-at-large, and the mayoral candidates at the West Gloucester Trinitarian Church at 488 Essex Ave.

The program is set to start at 6 p.m. with each of the candidates being offered between five and eight minutes to speak to residents. The event is free and open to the public.

Tuesday morning, Mayor Carolyn Kirk and challenger Mac Bell will engage in their first debate of the fall season when they field questions from a local media panel and exchange views at the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce breakfast debate beginning at 7:30 a.m. at the Elks at Bass Rocks.

The event will begin with a breakfast reception at 7:30, with the debate slated to run from 8 to 9 a.m.

That debate is open to all Chamber members and the general public, with a limited number of tickets available for $35 in advance or $40 on the week or day of the event for members, and at $50 for future members. Admission will include a light breakfast and attendance for the debate.

To register, contact the Chamber at 978-283-1601, or at Anyone with questions you’d like considered for the candidates may submit them to Chamber Senior Vice President Peter Webber at

Also, the Magnolia Library and Community Center will be sponsoring and hosting a candidates’ forum and debate next Wednesday from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at the Magnolia Library.

All candidates for council at-large seats as well as for School Committee will each be given two minutes to address the audience, while the candidates for Ward 5 will then engage in a debate followed by a debate between the candidates for mayor as well.

Each debate is 30 minutes, with local attorney and veterans activist Mark Nestor serving as moderator.

The event is open to the public. Coffee, water and cookies will available compliments of Magnolia Library.

The Times debates for the offices of mayor, city council and School Committee, meanwhile, are scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday, Oct. 16 and 17, at the Gloucester Stage Company’s Gorton’s Theatre, with questions to the candidates to be submitted by readers through the Times.

The contested races for the Ward 2 and Ward 5 city council races and the debate among at-large council candidates are slated for Wednesday, Oct. 16, with debates among the School Committee candidates and the mayoral candidates on Thursday, Oct. 17.