Gloucester 400™ Our People, Our Stories
Community outreach and involvement is fundamental to the successful launch and execution of Gloucester’s 400th anniversary celebration in 2023. The anniversary steering committee has hosted three well-attended and productive open forums since April 2018 - and the fourth public planning session will take place on Saturday, November 16th at 11 AM in the Kyrouz Auditorium of City Hall. As the committee’s tri-chairs, we hope you will join us.
Don’t miss this month’s events for your opportunity to make a difference and experience history firsthand. November 16, 2019, 11 AM - Gloucester 400 Public Planning Meeting & Call for Volunteers
November 24th, 2019, 3 PM - First Annual Event of the Quadricentennial, “Gloucester 400: Our Stories Begin, 1623 through 1722” The first of four annual celebrations planned to celebrate each century of Gloucester’s 400-year saga, it will take place at the Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church, at 10 Church Street, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
As we look ahead with anticipation to the Saturday’s meeting, we believe this is an ideal time to also look back at 2019 with appreciation for our early accomplishments. 2019’s work has focused on building actionable plans, developing organizational infrastructure, and raising awareness. , a wide variety of Gloucester 400 committees and sub-committees continue to actively seek volunteers whose interests and expertise align with their missions. There is a committee for nearly any interest and, as you will hear at the meeting, they are already building an active calendar of events. There has been other progress, too; here is just a sampling of what we've been up to:
A lively community design competition for the quadricentennial logo was conducted with the winning entry proudly displayed at the Spring planning event. This logo is now in use online, in print, and will be a prominent feature in merchandising efforts to support revenue requirements.
The international Medal Design competition moved to its second phase with the juried selection of three remarkable finalist designs. We were honored that over 40 entries were received from gifted artists worldwide. The Gloucester 400 medallion will be selected early in 2020, and medals will be available for pre-order soon thereafter.
Gloucester 400 is online with its website, www.gloucesterma.org and both Facebook and Instagram pages. The website continues to expand with information, calendared events, news, and educational materials and we have over 1,500 friends and followers on social media. Take a moment to follow us today so you don’t miss anything!
To raise awareness, we have implemented several promotional programs, including Gloucester 400 banners that are ready to be installed throughout the city in the Spring (2020).
Throughout 2019 Gloucester 400 representatives forged valuable alliances with communities throughout Massachusetts. We have marched in the Essex Bicentennial Parade by invitation (August 10, 2019), hosted the September meeting of the Massachusetts 400 communities, and worked closely with the Weymouth 400 organization to share ideas, insights, advice, and experiences. Gloucester 400 has also been directly involved with many of the city’s major festivals and traditional community events, from the Schooner and Waterfront Festivals to the Bluefin Blowout and Main Street Block Party. Over the past year, Gloucester Celebration Corporation (GCC) has successfully secured $160,000, including a grant from the state and over $50,000 from generous Gloucester donors. These funds help finance events, activities, and organizational infrastructure. Plans are in place to begin accepting pre-orders of the Gloucester 400 Commemorative Medallion via the website, as well as introduce appropriate merchandising strategies and offerings as momentum builds toward 2023’s festivities. Additional fundraising and development will kick off in earnest in 2020 with the launch of a targeted campaign for donors seeking early involvement and access to a variety of benefits. During the next several years, we look forward to working with Gloucester’s K-12 schools to encourage meaningful involvement, preserving and protecting documents and artifacts that chronicle Gloucester’s rich history, capturing today’s stories from primary sources to share with future generations, and celebrating Gloucester’s history through the stories of the people who lived, sacrificed, rejoiced, worked, built, and innovated together since 1623. For all of us serving on the Gloucester 400TM steering committee and its sub-committees, we would like to thank you -- our many friends and neighbors throughout Gloucester -- for your interest, ideas, enthusiasm, and support in 2019 and as we forge ahead in preparation for our city’s quadricentennial. We look forward to seeing you this Saturday as our work continues!
Bob Gillis, Ruth Pino, & Bruce Tobey Gloucester 400™ Chairpersons