Trust the Gorton's Fisherman and Go Visit Gloucester, Massachusetts - America's Oldest Seaport

One of my favorite places to wander to on Cape Ann's North Shore is the town of Gloucester which was one of the first English settlements in what would become the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Settled in 1623 by an expedition called the "Dorchester Company" which was appropriately made up of men from Dorchester (in the county of Dorset, England), Gloucester predates both Salem in 1626 and Boston in 1630. It is also home to a well-known sculpture that you've probably seen a time or two in your local grocery store's frozen food section but you'll read more on that later in the post!

When visiting Gloucester ideally you should begin at Stage Fort Park where the Gloucester Visitor and Welcoming Center is located. Here you can park your car and hop on-board the seasonal Stage Fort Park Shuttle run by the Cape Ann Transportation Authority to see the sights or grab a map and talk to the knowledgeable staff about what to see, where to eat, and what not to miss as they…

Harwood Hill - Where Arts Meet Hospitality in Bennington, Vermont

I've wandered up to the wonderful town of Bennington, Vermont several times over the years but had never stayed for an extended amount of time until a recent trip with my friend Paula, one of my distracted sidekicks who likes to travel almost as much as I do. Even though there were a couple chain motels in town, we wanted to try to find a local 'mom and pop' sort of operation as it not only helps support the local folks but generally also gives one a place to stay outside of the cookie cutter mold of major lodging chains. To that end I began a web search for a decent place in Bennington where we could hang our hats for a couple nights that would be clean, comfortable and wasn't going to break the bank in the process.

After raising my eyebrows at several other possibilities that were reasonably priced but had mixed reviews on TripAdvisor, I came across the website for The Harwood Hill which boasted a "million dollar view" just a bit north of downtown Benningt…

"It's Alive!" The Art of Horror Comes to Life at the Peabody Essex Museum

By combining rare and visually arresting works by graphic designers from around the world along with related memorabilia such as lobby cards, film props, costumes and electric guitars into a very artful presentation that depicts how movie publicity campaigns have drawn in audiences throughout the 20th century, Daniel Finamore, the Russell W. Knight Curator of Maritime Art & History at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, has definitely achieved the museum's goal of  “... looking for the sort of material that provides unexpected encounters with art, unexpected emotional responses to art, and things that people don’t necessarily expect to see in a museum."

Wait? What? Did that say electric guitars? Yep! It did. Electric guitars. In a museum exhibit. Which totally makes sense as the awesome collection of horror and sci-fi film posters used to create It's Alive! belong to heavy metal guitarist Kirk Hammett who, in his life outside of avid movie art collector…