01907 Summer 2020 V3





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02 | 01907

A publication of Essex Media Group


Edward M. Grant

Chief Executive Officer

Michael H. Shanahan


Edward L. Cahill

John M. Gilberg

Edward M. Grant

Gordon R. Hall

Monica Connell Healey

J. Patrick Norton

Michael H. Shanahan

Chief Financial Officer

William J. Kraft

Chief Operating Officer

James N. Wilson

Community Relations Director

Carolina Trujillo


Susan Conti


Thor Jourgensen

Contributing Editor

Bill Brotherton

Contributing Writers

Mike Alongi

Bill Brotherton

Gayla Cawley

Elyse Carmosino

Thor Jourgensen

Daniel Kane

Steve Krause

David McLellan


Olivia Falcigno

Spenser Hasak

Advertising Sales

Ernie Carpenter

Ralph Mitchell

Eric Rondeau

Patricia Whalen

Advertising Design

Trevor Andreozzi


Mark Sutherland


110 Munroe St.,

Lynn, MA 01901

781-593-7700 ext.1234


781-593-7700 ext. 1253



04 What's Up

06 Marching for justice

10 Give me rewrite

12 House Money

14 Suds specialist

16 The doctor is in

2020, as it

plays out in 01907

In a curious sort of way, Swampscott has ended up in the maelstrom of the two defining issues of 2020.

Gov. Charlie Baker's house, on Monument Avenue, with the common down the street, made for a

prime protest venue, as we witnessed all spring.

For weeks, every Thursday and a Saturday afternoon, conservative activists gathered to demand business

reopenings in the face of the coronavirus.

Then came the Black Lives Matter protests in front of Gov. Baker's house. And when a waitstaff person

at a local establishment posted on social media what he believes he overheard in a conversation among

customers, sleepy Swampscott suddenly became woke.

Gayla Cawley and Elyse Carmosino examine racial justice in this issue, including talking to 19-yearold

Marley Schmidt, a Black Lives Matter activist.

Dr. Allison Beaulieu was on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic as an emergency-room

physician at UMass Medical Center.

You may remember Allie Beaulieu, daughter of Dr. John Beaulieu, as a member of the Swampscott

High girls basketball team, which she helped lead to the 2009 Division 3 state championship. After high

school, she attended Bates College, and eventually became a doctor.

Dr. Beaulieu’s goal is to teach, and late last month, she and her new husband packed the car and drove

to the Ohio State University Medical Center, where she will begin a fellowship in medical education.

Steve Krause has the story.

Anne Svetchnikov didn't have to look far to find inspiration from the COVID-19 pandemic. Sons Anthony,

7, Adrian, 4, and Apollo, 1, helped her create a super hero who battles the virus while providing inspiration

to kids and their parents. Their collaboration resulted in "Awesome Team," a 28-page comic book juggling

humor and kid-oriented drama while fighting Corona Vera, "the evil queen." Thor Jourgensen has the story.

First Church in Swampscott pastor Ian Holland says there have been some challenges since the

COVID-19 lockdown began, but also some unexpected bright spots. For one thing, he sees more

participation from parishioners since the church began streaming Sunday services, especially from those

who might not be able to take part otherwise. Mike Alongi has the story.

There are also a few lighter components to this edition of 01907. For instance . . .

If you want to get to Foster Pond, it's best to go via Lynn, says Public Works director Gino Cresta, who

is also an assistant town administrator. He'd know. He grew up ice skating and playing hockey on the

pond, which is nestled right along the border. Dan Kane has the story.

And in the quarter century Doug Schmidt has been homebrewing, the beer industry has changed and

Schmidt has changed right along with it. Elyse Carmosino has that story.

Steve and Roxana Perdue were living in Charlestown when, eight years ago, they took an unexpected

detour through Swampscott, enroute to Cape Ann. They were smitten. They found a home, and they

can't imagine raising their kids — ages 12, 10 and 8 — anywhere else. Bill Brotherton has the story.

I hope this edition of 01907 will give you something to do as you wait out the pandemic. But if you do

venture outside your bubble, check out the sidewalk cafes on Humphrey Street. By blocking the sidewalk,

redirecting pedestrian traffic onto the street, pushing parking spaces a few feet out, and repainting the

center lines on that section of the street, the town has created a vibe never before seen in Swampscott. On

a recent Saturday night, the scene was reminiscent of what you’d witness in the Back Bay or South End in

Boston, and dozens and dozens of blocks of Manhattan. A tip of the Big Blue cap to all involved.


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04 | 01907


Need new cabinets?




Stand up and paddle

What: Swampscott Recreation hosts

paddleboard instruction classes for

kids ages 6-13 throughout the summer.

Certified instructors teach how to

safely and properly handle equipment

and paddle. Boards and instruction are

provided by SUP East Coast.

Where: Fisherman's Beach

When: Classes are held weekdays from

9 a.m. to noon. Visit swampscottma.

myrec.com for registration information.

Make haste with waste

What: Swampscott is commencing

its Waste Reduction Program allowing

residents to dispose of trash only in one

town-issued 35-gallon barrel.

Where: Go to the town website for

information on local stores selling

overflow bags and obtaining bulk item

and white good stickers at Town Hall.

When: Program starts on August 3.

To market, to market

What: The farmers market will look a

little different this year with coronavirus

restrictions limiting vendors to 15 and

visitors to 70 people. Masks are mandatory.

Where: Town Hall, 22 Monument Ave.

When: Sundays, 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Window into reading

What: Swampscott public library side

window pickup is open for readers to

check out books by calling 781 596 8867

or emailing swa@noblenet.org to reserve.

Where: Side window to the left of the

library front door, 61 Burrill St. Patrons

are asked to wear a mask and bring their

library card to pickups.

When: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

Take a hike

What: Harold A. King Forest extends

over 47 acres of wild and rugged area

located in the northwest corner of

Swampscott. From its highest point, the

land slopes down to an extensive swamp

with typical wetland plant life.

Where: Parking is available on the small

parking area at the end of Nichols Street

by the park entrance.

When: The park and its trails are accessible

during daytime with rules. Visitors should

check swampscott.gov/recreation/parks

and trail maps for information.

Small is beautiful.

Now, more than ever.

Across Massachusetts, educators are preparing for a new semester defined

by uncertanty. At The Phoenix School, we’re ready. We’re small and nimble,

and we take new challenges in stride. Technology and remote learning come

naturally to our students – they’ve always been part of our curriculum. Our

community is strong, flexible, and supportive, especially now.

But it’s more than that. For nearly 40 years, The Phoenix School has been

empowering Pre K–8th students to learn anywhere: in the classroom,

around their neighborhoods, and even inside their homes. Education is

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We prepare creative learners and leaders. No matter what comes.

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06 | 01907



Igniting a wave of demonstrations

across the globe, the Memorial Day

killing of 46-year-old George Floyd

has been acutely felt in this small,


predominantly-white beach town just

north of Boston, where protesters took

to Monument Square throughout June to

demand change at the most local level.

“It’s really sad that it took until

now for there to be another civil rights

(movement), but it’s good that it’s

happening at all,” said 19-year-old

Spring and early summer saw protests in Swampscott with calls for lifting coronavirus restrictions and racial justice marches with protesters memorializing the

names of people from around the country killed during encounters with the police.


SUMMER 2020 | 07

Rev. Dr. Andre Bennett, a pastor at the Zion Baptist Church in Lynn and member of the Essex County Community Organization, raises his fist as he takes part in

a rally in front of Gov. Baker's Swampscott home on June 3.

Racial justice protesters brought their message to Monument Avenue in front

of Gov. Baker's home on June 3.

Mykah Rivera, 5, holds a protest sign as he walks to see his aunt, Caja Johnson

of Beverly, speak during a rally.

Marley Schmidt, a Swampscott activist

and Black Lives Matter protest organizer.

“We want to contribute from a very

local level, because people are quick to

assume racism doesn’t happen here, but

in reality, I would say a very different and

more pervasive version of racism exists

in mostly white, liberal, moderate towns

compared to the south or somewhere

that is more overtly racist.”

Discussions on needed changes

have exploded in some places faster

than others: Minneapolis, Denver,

Portland, Los Angeles and New York

City announced plans to defund police

departments or break contractual ties

pulling police from schools.

Change is reshaping justice in cities.

But what about small communities like


Schmidt said she and other organizers

felt it was important to educate not

only state and local officials, but also

other residents about just how much

Swampscott has been affected by racist

policies and practices through the decades.

“We live in such a gentrified area, and

it’s because of redlining and things like

that,” she said. “That’s why our town exists

as it does, and that’s why Lynn exists as it

does right next to us. I feel like we really

need to make that clear to people in order

for any change to happen.”

“We really need to have these

conversations in these areas,” Schmidt

added. “It’s hard for us alone to do

something by ourselves, but we can

embrace any changes at a higher level

if the town is more willing to truly

08 | 01907

recognize the bigger issues going on


The protests brought a "Restorative

Circle" discussion to Swampscott

designed to get people talking about

Floyd's death and to ask, "what's next,"

in the push for racial justice.

Swampscott High School Assistant

Principal Colleen Cull-Finn and the

school's health sciences teacher, Julie

Ingaciola, moderated the discussion.

Teachers, administrators, students,

elected officials and the school district's

METCO director joined the discussion,

propelling it into what Cull-Finn called

a "very powerful" dialogue on race.

"The purpose of our restorative circle

was really to have a diverse panel of

community members to speak about

their experiences and perspectives

and opinions on social injustice,"

said Ingaciola. "I feel as though this

is a conversation a lot of people feel

uncomfortable with, especially white

people. Our goal was to have an

uncomfortable discussion in a space that

was safe."

Another restorative circle planned

for this summer, and Cull-Finn

and Ignaciola see future discussions

scheduled on a weekly or monthly basis.

Schmidt called local residents'

reaction to racial justice dialogue “mixed,

but mostly positive.” She praised the

Select Board for reaching out to activists

to discuss ways in which they could help

make Swampscott a more inclusive and

safe place for people of color.

“It was really great to see the local

government influenced by those events

so quickly, but there’s definitely not

like, total agreement from the local

government level or in the town, which

is pretty obvious through Facebook,”

Schmidt said. “You can scroll through

any comments about the protests and

there are a lot that are like, ‘this is

ridiculous,’ or ‘this is pointless,’ or there

are people worried there’s going to be


She added: “We really need

to start that conversation and get


There's already a local push to

have those kinds of "uncomfortable"

conversations on a regular basis, with

Swampscott High School administrators

and teachers coordinating the effort.

These kinds of discussions

have also been taking place within

Swampscott High School, Cull-Finn

said, noting that there's been a level

Protests echoed across Swampscott during late spring and early summer.

This issue that we're facing right now

isn't just about police brutality. It's a

bigger systemic issue just in general. Our

students are trying to figure out where

do they go and where do they turn to be

this voice?

— Colleen Cull-Finn

A protester raises

her fist as she takes

part in a rally.

SUMMER 2020 | 09

of collaboration among teachers and

school administration to determine

whether there have been instances of

discrimination or injustice at the high


Talks have centered around how to

approach those instances and get the

message across to everyone that it will

not be tolerated, Cull-Finn said.

Restorative conversations have also

touched on rethinking student discipline,

Cull-Finn said.

For instance, Cull-Finn said high

school administrators are working

on amending policies in the student

handbook. Definitions will be

provided for prohibited actions such as

discrimination and microaggressions,

with a goal of educating offenders within

the school and working toward cultural


"I would say, administratively, as far

as cultural competency, I think people

are in a spot where they're comfortable,

where now we're pushing people out

of their (comfort) zone with these

conversations. This is the culture we're

shifting to. We'll continue to grow

with our cultural competency. It's not a

conversation that happens once and it's

over. The demographics of Swampscott

are changing," she said.

Ignaciola said there's a history of

METCO students and other students

of color feeling alienated at Swampscott

High School, citing conversations she's

had with students and Swampscott's

METCO director Latoya Ogunbona.

METCO, or Metropolitan Council

for Educational Opportunity, is a

state-funded, voluntary educational

desegregation program designed to

eliminate racial imbalance through the

busing of children from Boston and

Springfield to suburban public schools,

according to the Swampscott METCO

program website.

One METCO parent who

participated in the first restorative circle

said she has to wake up at 5:30 a.m. each

weekday to ensure that her son can make

the school bus to Swampscott, Ingaciola


Ingaciola has heard those students

wonder where they fit in, in regards to

whether their community is where they

live, in Boston, or Swampscott, where

they attend school.

"(It's) something to be mindful

of," she said. "We have to make sure

we continue to work toward making

METCO students and students of color

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There are Swampscott High School

teachers who are already attempting

to bring cultural diversity into their

curriculum, Ingaciola said, but there's

much work that needs to be done.

As part of her work with the Safe

and Supportive Schools Commission,

Ingaciola sent a survey to faculty

members, which showed that many

teachers were uncomfortable about having

conversations about race in their schools.

She said the results spoke volumes

about what the district needs to work

on, reinforces what was already known,

and will be used to bring about positive

changes within the high school.

The way forward on the path to racial

justice will be smoothed by collaboration,

not division, said Cull-Finn.

"This issue that we're facing right

now isn't just about police brutality. It's a

bigger systemic issue just in general. Our

students are trying to figure out where

do they go and where do they turn to be

this voice?" said Cull-Finn. "We want to

encourage students to have a voice but

we want to ensure they're using their

voice in a positive way."

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10 | 01907

Write and rewrite

is their motto

Some of us have a good feel for each other's writing.

A real camaraderie has grown over the years.

— Jerry Brooks

Lina Rehal, a member of the Red Rock Rewriters, sits with one of her

published books "Carousel Kisses."


Jerry Brooks, a member of the Red Rock Rewriters, sits with one

of his published books "Owldoll."


When some of the Red Rock

Rewriters first started going down to

Swampscott library in 2006 to share their

writing it wasn't even originally their

group. Now, almost 15 years later they're

still meeting weekly in the library's

Baldwin Room.

"In 2006, Thor Jourgensen and I were

in a writers group that someone else

started," said member Jerry Brooks. "That

guy ended up moving to California and

we decided to continue ourselves.

"We've felt as though we aren’t really

there to teach but more to help each

other rewrite," Brooks said. "We bring

in things to read, and generally someone

else reads what you’ve written. We try to

give each other feedback."

Over the years many members have

come and gone but the group is still kept

alive by a number of core members who

cherish the time they spend together.

"We all enjoy it," Brooks said. "Lina

Rehal was in the group and then she left

for about six years or so because it didn't

fit her schedule. We've had people come

and go and had members pass away as

well. When you're around for 15 years

that stuff happens."

Brooks along with Rehal have even

had some of their works published over

the years.

Brooks self-published the novel of

"Owldoll", a young-adult fiction work

about witches, magic, spells and a girl’s

friendship with a wise old owl.

Rehal has published a pair of romance

novels called "Loving Daniel" and

"October in New York" along with a

memoir, nostalgia read called "Carousel

SUMMER 2020 | 11

Kisses" about growing up in the 50's and


But it's not just about that, says

Brooks. Other core members include

Jeremy Murphy, Laura Teracino and

Johnny Kodis, the latter of whom has

been able to put many of his stories to

the page thanks to the group.

"Johnny is an interesting member,"

Brooks said. "We’ve had members that

have stories and he has a lot of stories

inside of him. But Johnny has trouble

putting it on paper. He could sit down

and tell you a story but writing it down

was different.

"I think that we help each other in a

lot of different ways," Brooks said. "The

feedback that we’ve been able to give to

each other has meant a lot to me, I know


Brooks, who is currently working on

his second book, a Boston crime novel

titled, "You're So Wrong," says along with

the feedback the relationships grown over

15 years is also what stands out.

"There's no rules," Brooks said.

"We’ve had people write non-fiction,

poetry, even screen plays. It’s been so

enjoyable. Some of us have a good

feel for each other's writing. A real

camaraderie has grown over the years."

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SUMMER 2020 | 13

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14 | 01907



n the roughly 25 years Doug

Schmidt has been homebrewing,

the beer industry has changed and

Schmidt has changed right along

with it.

His award-winning, 10-gallon batches

of beer that are almost unrecognizable

compared to the early homebrewing

experiments in his college apartment.

“Back in college, the first couple

batches were exhilarating because I was

potentially doing something really cool,”

Schmidt said. “The final product on the

first batches definitely weren’t great, but

that didn’t stop me.”

The inspiration to make his own

beer came after venturing into a home

brewing shop not far from where he lived

as a student at Plymouth State College

in the 1990s.

Blown away by the concept, Schmidt

purchased his first homebrewing kit


“I was pretty much all in from that

point on,” he said, although at the time

he struggled to find fellow students

willing to test out his brews, which he

emphatically described as “not that good.”

“I had a downstairs neighbor who

would drink anything. I told him, ‘this

won’t be good.’ He said, ‘I’ll drink it

anyways,’” Schmidt laughed.

Doug Schmidt sits in the basement of his

Swampscott home surrounded by his boiling kettle

and brewing supplies. PHOTOS: OLIVIA FALCIGNO

Flash forward to the present and the

Boston Wort Processors Homebrew Club

member has seemingly perfected the art

of home brewing has the awards and

accolades to prove it.

In 2017, he took home third place at

the 39th annual American Homebrewers

Association’s National Homebrew

Competition, with the awards

ceremony held a plane ride away at the

Minneapolis Convention Center.

His winning creation, which was

entered in the European Sour category

23A, beat out more than 8,600 entries

from 3,530 homebrewers in every state

and 13 other countries.

“That was pretty big,” Schmidt said.

“That was probably my biggest win.”

Hidden away in the basement corner

of his well-equipped homebrew station

are the dozens of other ribbons and

medals Schmidt has won for his creative

and well-crafted brews, which he said he

primarily shares with family, friends, and

other local homebrewers who frequently

gather at his home to enjoy their drinks

and discuss tips and tactics for producing

the perfect batch of beer.

“We’ll get like 20 or 30 people here

sharing different batches,” he said.

“Some people bring their good stuff, and

some people will bring their stuff where

they’re like, ‘what happened here?’ You go

SUMMER 2020 | 15

through the process with them and help

them try to figure out how to make the

beer better."

He added: “People keep bouncing

ideas off each other, and we’ll go in with

group bulk buys on malts or grains or

hops or supplies. Everybody kind of has a

common goal.”

Despite his beer’s popularity among

judges and the neighborhood crowd,

Schmidt has never sold any of it.

He occasionally entertains the idea

of opening his own brewery to sell his

creations. He knows he would have to

explore different ideas in order to stand

out in the sea of craft breweries that have

become increasingly popular in recent years.

“If I were to do something, it would

be in collaboration with someone else

who’s like minded, but it would have

to be a different angle. You always have

to have an angle. That at least helps,”

Schmidt said. “I don’t think I’d really be

interested in doing my own thing, but

it would be something … a little more

fringy than the mainstream.”

As someone who’s been in the

“business” for over two and a half

decades, Schmidt says he’s seen a shift in

the way Americans drink — and make —

beer, especially now that craft breweries

have largely begun to weed out their

bigger, more industrial competitors.

“There was a big downshift in the

early 2000s. A lot of breweries went

under, but they were mostly trying to be

bigger regional breweries back then,” he

said. “Then I think around 10 or 15 years

ago, the surge started coming back up:

We went from maybe 5,000 breweries

up to 10,000 breweries in the U.S. and

plenty more in planning.

“It’s gone from companies trying to

be somebody who can supply and be well

known throughout New England or even

throughout the country, to everything is

now a super local, neighborhood-type of


He warned that just because a place

is considered a craft brewery doesn’t

necessarily mean its beers are highquality.

“I think it’s kind of like bands,” he

said. “At one point, when bands were

getting really big, everybody wanted to

start a band and then every band started

sounding like another popular band and

not all bands were good.

“There are so many (breweries)

opening up and a lot of them may have

only been brewing for a year or two. I

try to cut them slack, too, because they

Doug Schmidt has medals and ribbons on display

in his basement from past award-winning brews

and contest winnings.

need time to figure out their system and

get some feedback, but a lot of them

have never even entered homebrew

competitions or have participated in their

local homebrew club or gotten feedback,

so it’s kind of a double-edged sword.”

Ultimately, Schmidt said he does what

he does simply because he enjoys it.

“It’s fun,” he said. “It’s a cool


16 | 01907




Star athlete-turned-doctor Allie Beaulieu is always on the move and coronavirus found her battling the

pandemic in the emergency room.




he year was 2009, and the best

way to describe Allie Beaulieu —

if you know your Boston Celtics

history — was that she was the Big

Blue's John Havlicek.

She was perpetual motion. She never

stood still on the court. Beaulieu was

an expert at all those little things that

make for a complete player. She played

relentless defense, moved constantly

without the ball on offense, and loved

every minute of it. In fact, after the Big

Blue defeated Quaboag Regional, 72-38,

on March 14, 2009, Beaulieu was in tears

— not so much out of happiness that she

and the team won — but because it was

the last time they'd all play together in

Swampscott uniforms.

The crowning achievement of

Beaulieu's basketball career — the

Division 3 state championship victory

— occurred at the DCU Center in

downtown Worcester. Eleven years later,

and she is Dr. Allison Beaulieu, and this

past spring, she was back in Worcester,

this time standing on the front lines of

the COVID-19 battle as an emergency

room physician at the UMass Medical


And she brings the same passion for

medicine that she brought to basketball,

only it's in the area of teaching. That's

her ultimate goal, and as of June, she

was off to a fellowship at Ohio State

University to study medical education.

She thrived on emergency-room work

while in Worcester, and a lot of it had

to do with how she spent her formative


"It's teamwork, which I think sports

really got me ready for," she said.

"Being in an emergency department,

you're on a full team that's composed of

nurses, doctors, respiratory therapists,

and others. It's a big team, and we

work side by side every day. Having an

SUMMER 2020 | 17

athletic background really prepared me

for that."

After graduating from Swampscott

High, Dr. Beaulieu played four years of

college basketball at Bates, before going

to New York Medical College, where she

received her medical degree.

The daughter of Dr. John Beaulieu

and emergency room nurse Paula

Beaulieu will have a lot to teach that

next generation. As an emergency room

physician at UMass Medical Center,

she treated many of the 5,028 the city

recorded as of June, not to mention other

cases from other communities as well.

"We've seen high volumes of sick

people," she said. "One of the hardest

things that I've found is that they're all

alone. There's no family that's allowed

back in to see them. So what you have

is family members on the other end

of the telephone, and that's how you

communicate. It's not being able to have

personal interactions."

The other thing she feels may be a

little off-putting to people who come

into the emergency department is how

the physicians and nurses are dressed.

"We're in full PPE (personal protective

equipment), with face shields, masks and

gloves, and we can look very scary to

people coming into the hospital."

But while it can be

difficult, she said, it's

also part of the

rewards of working

in emergency


"I'm caring

for people at

their worst

times and

on their


days," Dr.





about that."

Yes, she

said, every

member of the

team has to be


"You have to be

ready to treat whoever

comes through that door,"

she said. "You're not seeing the

same thing every day, and anyone can

walk through that door. Often, it's all

hands on deck. And you pretty much

have to be able to do everything."

It's also important, she

said, not to be a robot.

"I don't think it's a

bad thing to show

emotions when

you're caring for

people on their

worst days,



with the


she said.

"I think

it's a good

thing to

show your


and show

how much

you care about

the people you're

taking care of.

"You still have

to go to work, though,

and do what needs to be

done,"she said. "But we're all

human. It's OK to let that show."

There are times when that emotion

might get a little overwhelming.

"And when that happens, one of

the great things about UMass is that

everyone's so supportive," she said. "If

you see someone having a rough time,

there's always someone there to lift

them up.

"I think difficult patient encounters

stay with us sometimes," she said. "I

know there are cases that stick with me."

Last month, Dr. Beaulieu received the

Massachusetts ASEP (American College

of Emergency Physicians) Resident

of the year award. She was nominated

by her program director, Dr. Richard

Church, director of residency emergency

medicine at UMass.

The criteria included commitments

to emergency medicine, compassion

and patient care, recognition as a strong

leader, commitment to the emergency

medicine community, and commitment

to the education and enrichment of


She was unsure of when, or how, she

will be honored for this.

"Because of social distancing, it's

probably going to be

an online




Being in

an emergency

department, you're on a full

team that's composed of nurses,

doctors, respiratory therapists,

and others. It's a big team, and

we work side by side every

day. Having an athletic

background really

prepared me for that.

— Allie Beaulieu

18 | 01907

Steve Perdue stands on the rooftop deck of 500 Ocean Avenue in Revere, a luxury apartment complex developed by him and his Redgate team.



Steve Perdue stands on the rooftop

deck of 500 Ocean Avenue, the luxury

apartment complex at Revere Beach that

his company developed, and gazes out

at the Atlantic. To the left, cars can be

seen in the distance crossing the Nahant

Causeway. The Boston skyline beckons at

the right. And sun worshipers sit six feet

apart on the sand, eight stories below and

eight stories farther from this heavenly


One can imagine that Perdue, a

Swampscott resident, is flashing back to

his youth in California's Orange County,

where his love for the ocean and surfing

blossomed. Or maybe he's thinking of

climbing aboard his Harbour Surfboards

“Banana” 10’-0” longboard and riding the

waves at Phillips Beach in the town he,

his wife Roxana and their three children

have called home since 2012.

"Beautiful, isn't it," he said. "It's

easy to think, 'Where am I? On the

Vineyard?' "

Steve and Roxana were living in

Charlestown when, eight years ago, they

took an unexpected detour through

Swampscott, enroute to Cape Ann.

"Swampscott was charming. We were

awed by the beauty of its beaches,

its little historic village, Red Rock

Bistro, which is now Mission on the

Bay. Swampscott is one of only a few

North Shore towns that have both

beaches and train access, with Salem

and Manchester." They were smitten.

They found a home in the Clarke School

neighborhood, and they can't imagine

raising their kids, ages 12, 10 and 8,

anywhere else.

"We love the beaches. We see so many

of our neighbors and friends and their

kids there. We have block parties. Our

family absolutely loves Swampscott."

Roxana, an in-demand portrait

photographer, is an avid runner who can

often be seen navigating Swampscott's


The couple met at Baylor University

in Texas. His parents and grandparents

are Baylor grads as well. Graduate school

brought them to Boston.

Perdue is senior vice president of

Redgate, the Boston-based real estate

development and advisory firm that

developed this stunning 500 Ocean

Street apartment complex. He and

his Redgate teammates are also in the

process of building the Ryder complex,

a seven-story, 200-unit apartment/retail

property just down the road at 20-50

Ocean Ave/21 Revere Beach Blvd. They

also developed the One Beachmont

apartment complex, also in Revere, and

the transformative One North of Boston

I and II in Chelsea. All properties have

easy access to public transportation.

Perdue has delivered more than

1,000 well-crafted apartments in these

new urban neighborhoods and has

overseen the development of some 2,700

residential units on the East Coast on

behalf of Redate's private equity clients.

Ralph Cox, founding member and

principal of Redgate, invited Perdue

to join the firm in 2012. "I've spent

eight years cranking out projects. I

SUMMER 2020 | 19

love my job," said Perdue, who is more

comfortable praising his co-workers,

business associates and thanking Cox

for the opportunity than talking about


Prior to joining Redgate, Perdue

worked for Hellmuth Obata Kassabaum

(HOK) as a project architect, and served

as a project manager at Cargo Ventures,

a commercial real estate development

company focused on port and airport

related properties in and around major

cities across the United States.

But this magnificent 500 Ocean

Avenue is something special. Perdue

said it has 305 units, in a variety of

floor plans, that rent for about $3 per

square foot. By contrast, similar units

on the other side of the tunnel or bridge

command at least double that. The

property has been a big hit with young

professionals who work in the city. The

average renters — singles and couples —

are 30 years old with an annual income

of $120,000.

It has a communal workspace, outdoor

lap pool, fitness center, outdoor yoga

space, dog care facility, indoor/outdoor

gaming activities, and, of course, this

rooftop deck with its magnificent ocean

views. It's a 14-minute Blue Line ride

to downtown Boston, and is connected

to the Wonderland parking garage and

America's oldest public beach via a halfacre

raised plaza.

It is also home to Dryft, the most

recent success of restaurateur Michael

Aldi (Pier 6, Reelhouse, Mija Cantina).

Perdue said Dryft "is the heartbeat" of

the plaza.

Aldi, who lives in Middleton and has

family ties to Revere and Lynnfield, in

turn, praised his landlord.

"Steve and Kyle Warwick and Damian

Szary, two other Redgate principals,

have been very supportive. They are great

landlords. A lot of the landlords of my

businesses are in, say Oregon, and I have

to deal with a building manager. Redgate

is hands-on and very responsive.

"This is a unique opportunity,"

said Aldi. "People from Boston and

Cambridge and Swampscott and points

north have come to Dryft. We hit the

ground running, and we were doing very

well and reviews were good. Then the

pandemic hit." Dryft’s menu is seafoodfocused

and leans Italian. The outdoor

dining space, with tables strategically

spread out to meet social distancing

guidelines, was quite busy the sunny June

day we visited. Aldi expects a taproom

next door to open around Aug. 1. He

hesitates to call his restaurant upscale,

but it is certainly fancier than the mom

and pop operations that have served

Revere Beach for generations.

In addition to surfing, Steve is a

swimmer and paddle boarder who spends

a lot of time in Nahant and at Phillips

and Eisman's beaches, as well as at

Devereux in Marblehead. He regularly

paddles his Naish Nalu 10’-0” SUP

between Phillips Beach and Nahant

Beach looking for waves.

"And the nice, rolling waves on

Revere Beach, right across the street

from here, are great for paddle boarding,"

he said, staring out at the Atlantic one

more time.


O c e an

A v e n u e

20 | 01907

Fostering outdoor fun


Foster Pond, a hot spot for kayaking in the summer and ice skating in the winter, is located off of Windsor Avenue in Swampscott.



ne of Swampscott's greatest

natural treasures isn't near

the beach and, to get there,

you start in Lynn.

Gino Cresta, the town's Public

Works director and assistant town

administrator, guides visitors to Foster

Pond thusly: Start on Eastern Avenue in

Lynn, turn onto Harvest Street near the

Durum Pasta Company building, which

will bring you to Windsor Avenue and

over to the pond.

Cresta knows what he's talking about.

He grew up on the pond — skating there

as a kid in the 1970s when winter turned

it into a natural rink.

"When I was younger we used to

spend days skating on Foster Pond,"

Cresta said. "I grew up here and I've

been coming to this area ever since I

could in the '70s."

What was once a spot dotted with

FOSTER, page 22

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22 | 01907


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Swampscott resident Fran LeBlanc points out a

few fish in the pond to his grandson, Christopher

Kane, 5, and DPW Director Gino Cresta.

FOSTER, continued from page 20

a few cottages back in those days is

now home to neighborhoods around it.

During the spring and summer months,

the area lights up green with trees and

lilypads while locals enjoy time on the

water in small boats or walk along the


"It’s something special," Cresta

said. "It's secluded and there's a lot

of natural wildlife. There's plenty of

residents up there. Way back in the '70s

it was mostly cottages in that same area

as Foster. In the past 30 to 40 years

though, that area has really come along.

A lot of the houses have been fixed up

and new houses have been built in the


Windsor Avenue, where Cresta lives,

is one of several streets people walk as

they make their way around the pond.

Cresta also has a unique relationship

with the area as head of the DPW,

although the area doesn't require too

much maintenance with neighbors

helping to keep an eye out for any

problems in the flowing dam.

"We really don’t do a lot there,"

Cresta said. "Aggregate Industry actually

pumps water into the pond from their

quarries which ends up flowing back into

the pipe and over into King's Beach. So

the only problem would be sometimes

that headwall at the end of the pond gets

debris in it. If that happens the water

levels can get high but there’s always a

couple neighbors that let me know."

If you visit Foster Pond, make a point

to head over to Nichols Street and take a

walk around 47-acre Harold King Forest.

Like Foster Pond, the conservation land

is tucked right near the town's border

with Lynn.


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24 | 01907

A career of the heart



There are roughly 4,400

unique writing samples in

Elizabeth Flynn’s collection,

each written by a different

person. She’s kept a single

sample from each student she

taught in her decades-long


Wait — there's more —

laminated postcards and

letters from past students and

pictures with former pupils

on their wedding days. Her

relationships with students

was what drove Flynn to

teach for so long, and she

keeps those relationships

close to the heart with her

home collection.

“Even from the time I

was a little girl, playing with

my younger sisters, I always

played school. Being a teacher

is just who I am,” Flynn said.

“The joke was always if I had

to become a nun to teach, I


Flynn retired this year

from a 44-year teaching career

with 26 years spent teaching

eighth-grade English at

Swampscott Middle School.

She was honored by former

students and colleagues in

June with a parade — along

with fellow retiring teacher

Bill Andrake and librarian Sandra Moltz

— and, reflecting back, said she couldn’t

have had a more fulfilling career.

“I came to Swampscott in 1994, and

that’s my family,” said Flynn, who had

taught in several other places, including

Winthrop and Andover, earlier in her


A Melrose resident who grew up in

Somerville, Flynn, 65, said teaching in

Swampscott gave her purpose and it is

where the classroom became her “stage.”

“I had fun. If I had to teach Poe, I

would have a shirt on like him, or dress

like Maya Angelou,” she said. “I went in

and I was on stage.”

“I have been

the happiest


If you go

find a job

you love, it

won’t be

a job.”

— Elizabeth


Elizabeth Flynn reflects on her 44 years of teaching after retiring this year from

Swampscott Middle School.


During her decades in the classroom,

Flynn saw former students go on to

become teachers and some became

colleagues teaching in rooms down the

hall from Flynn.

"There have been multiple times I had

students later become teachers right next

to me: Lara Dandreo is now teaching;

Kirsten Rigol, now teaching. Last year

was the first year I had a daughter of a

boy I had in eighth grade,” she said.

She loves surprising her studentsturned-teachers

by taking out one of

their eighth grade writing samples and

reading it.

“I keep one from every student I ever

had,” Flynn said.

Flynn said her relationship

with past students has

remained incredibly close,

even with students she taught

decades ago. This summer,

she received a letter from a

student who was in her class

in 1997. The woman wrote

that Flynn’s class and the time

Flynn dedicated to J.R.R.

Tolkein's "The Fellowship of

the Ring" novels had a great

impact on her.

“I just want to thank you,”

the former student wrote,

“I had a lot of issues, but I

always looked forward to your

class because we laughed, and

we did so much writing. It

gave me a sense of purpose.”

Another student calls her

every year on her birthday —

December 15.

“I will keep all the letters I

get forever,” Flynn said.

Flynn said she was

inspired by a Somerville

middle school teacher

who was tough on her but

inspiring. She hopes she

made a similar mark on her


One of Flynn’s favorite

memories of past students

is seeing a former student

on the train 20 years after

teaching him, and noticing

he held a copy of Reader’s

Digest. The student excitedly

told Flynn she introduced him to the

magazine, and he’s been reading it ever


“You like to hope kids listen to you,”

Flynn said. “I can run into a student at

Disney years later, and they will come up

to me and recite, ‘Nature's first green is

gold, Her hardest hue to hold, Her early

leaf's a flower, But only so an hour,’ and

they’ll remember because we worked so

hard on 'The Outsiders.'

“There’s nothing like eighth graders.

People say they’re surly and this and that,

but they are so involved with everything.

They always want to let you know their

opinion,” she said.

SUMMER 2020 | 25

Retired Swampscott Middle School teacher Elizabeth Flynn keeps photographs of students she taught over the course of her career and labels them by year.

Flynn said she doesn’t want to have

a retirement party, because the parade

thrown for her “can’t be topped.” More

than a hundred cars drove by, including

the Fire Department’s “Big Blue” truck,

and Flynn got to share the experience

with Andrake, a colleague she respects

and admires.

“I was the first one in the building,

and he was the last one out,” Flynn said.

Now that she is retired, Flynn said

she has volunteered to come back to the

middle school one day a week and fill in

if needed, but outside of that she doesn’t

have plans.

Flynn said it’s impossible to make

plans with the COVID-19 pandemic,

and admits the pandemic is a large

reason for her retirement.

“Remote teaching — it is not

teaching. You can’t do it that way,” Flynn

said. “Something that takes one hour

usually takes four hours to do. And

people are so quiet during the remote

learning sessions, they don’t answer you.”

But she is happy with her decision

— which, she said, she “could have made

eight years ago” — and is happy to cap

off a fulfilling career.

“I have been the happiest person. If

you go find a job you love, it won’t be a

job,” Flynn said.

Flynn has a collection of baby

pictures from past students and

is known to send letters written

from when they were in eighth

grade to them many years later.

Flynn keeps every note any past student has written to her and even

prints out emails.

Elizabeth Flynn, who has had roughly 4400 students in her 44 years

of teaching, keeps photos from past students laminated and in folders

labeled by year.

Elizabeth Flynn worked closely

with special education teacher

Gayle Zipper.

26 | 01907

Signs of the times


Coronavirus restrictions couldn't keep town residents

from expressing their joy, anger and solidarity during

spring and early summer as they decorated porches and

lawns with signs and banners.

High school and college graduates who saw their school

successes dampened by the pandemic got congratulatory

salutes with custom-made signs.

Essential workers in healthcare, the food and delivery

economies and public safety received sign tributes

and the tidal wave pushing racial justice to America's

forefront dotted Swampscott lawns with Black Lives

Matter signs and other solidarity expressions.

SUMMER 2020 | 27


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28 | 01907

She hit coronavirus with humor

Dr. Anna Svetchnikov with her three sons, from left, Adrian, 4, Apollo, 1, and Anthony, 7, who are the superheroes in her comic book "Awesome Team."



Even as she guided her therapy clients

through coronavirus at-home isolation

and social distancing anxiety, Dr. Anna

Svetchnikov searched for ways to fight

the pandemic with humor.

The Swampscott mother of three

didn't have to look far and wide: Sons

Anthony, 7, Adrian, 4, and Apollo,

1, helped her create a superhero intent

on battling coronavirus while providing

inspiration to kids and their parents.

The mother-and-sons collaboration

resulted in "Awesome Team," a 28-page

comic book juggling humor and kidoriented

drama pitting children heroes

against Corona Vera, "the evil queen."

Svetchnikov's sons helped their

mother write the dialogue and create the

illustrations that fill "Awesome Team."

The book offers examples of patience,

kindness, teamwork and coping skills to

define "hero behavior" on a scale children

can grasp.

Embedded in the book's pages are

practical reminders about good hygiene

and setting a routine.

"A lot of kids really struggle to set

a schedule. It's important to reinforce

hobbies and interests," she said.

Started as coronavirus tightened its

grip on Massachusetts, "Awesome Team"

has gone through a revision with an

illustrator giving the comic book its final


"The cover looks amazing,"

Svetchnikov said, adding two more comic

books oriented around childhood mental

health are in the works.

A licensed marriage and family

therapist, Svetchnikov is executive

director of mental health nonprofit

Longwood Care. The Lynn English

High School graduate launched

her practice in 2016 with help from

husband, Michael.

Coronavirus forced Longwood to

temporarily shut down its Danvers and

Lynnfield offices, but Svetchnikov and

12 clinicians practiced "telehealth"

through virtual online therapy sessions

during the pandemic's early spring


Svetchnikov isn't alone in adapting

SUMMER 2020 | 29

her treatment techniques to help clients

deal with fears and anxiety associated

with the global pandemic and its sudden

societal changes.

Maria del Mar Vazquez, North Shore

Community College associate professor

of psychology, said Svetchnikov took the

right approach to helping kids talk about


"With children, you have to find a

way into their emotions," said Vazquez, a

mother of two.

Clinginess and inability to sleep are

signs children are anxious and Vazquez

said parents should strike a balance

explaining the pandemic to children.

"Make a basic explanation. It's a

balance of not too much and not too

little," she advised.

When she isn't providing therapy

online or juggling remote learning

classes for 200 students, Maria del Mar

Vazquez is running a household with

two daughters.

A clinical psychologist and North

Shore Community College associate

professor, Vazquez is talking to her

patients about panic and anxiety.

"If you feel you're not sleeping, your

heart is beating too much — that's panic.

When you can't control it, you should

call and reach out," she said.

Like Vazquez, Svetchnikov observed

distress caused by coronavirus soon after

the pandemic hit locally. Her clients

were stressed over isolation requirements

and worries about how their children

would handle at-home learning limiting

them to drive-by or on-screen visits with


"They're worried about their health,"

she said.

Once she got interested in creating a

coronavirus comic book, she jumped into

the project with her children. The book's

dialogue acknowledges in a child's voice

coronavirus' threat and lethality and it

also emphasizes that everyone brings

strengths and weaknesses to the battle

against the virus.

It is meant to appeal to young

children, but Svetchnikov said the book's

"grounding" exercises, coping skills tips,

and behavior management chart are

practical tools for parents.

"We even wrote a little song," she


Svetchnikov plans to make the

book available through Amazon with

an emphasis on eventually getting

"Awesome Team" into the hands of

educators and childcare workers.

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(and the



Surviving and enduring COVID-19,

and then plotting a way back to

"normal" has all been a bit of a blur

for The First Church in Swampscott

Congregational's pastor and


"There have certainly been a lot of

challenges that we've faced in this time,

but we've all had to adapt and try to

make the best of the situation," said

Pastor Ian Holland, who has been the

senior minister at The First Church since


Those challenges, and more

importantly, those adaptations have

led to the current state of affairs at The

First Church. Holland conducts Sunday

service weekly at 10 a.m. per usual,

but he does it alone from the church's

sanctuary and broadcasts it via Facebook

Live and Zoom.

It is an arrangement that has brought

its share of benefits and challenges.

"To be honest, we've seen even more

participation than ever before now

that we've started the online worship,"

Holland said. "One of the great

things about this is we've had people

participate who normally wouldn't be

able to physically come to church for

one reason or another. We've had people

from all over the country — places like

Arizona, California, Florida, Maine and

even internationally from places like

Germany and the Netherlands — join

in on our sermons.

"At the same time, we've also had our

share of people who we've lost because

they're not comfortable with either the

technology or the fact that it seems very

impersonal," Holland continued. "That

is why we'd love to be able to reconnect

with those people in the church, while

still utilizing the online worship that has

SUMMER 2020 | 31

brought in so many people. We don't

want to return to normalcy, we want to

grow from this."

One of the biggest challenges for the

church, according to Holland, has been

the process of dealing with deaths in

the community. With funeral services,

memorials and burials all severely

curtailed due to the virus restrictions,

Holland feels stuck not being able to do

as much as he'd like for those suffering


"It's obviously been very hard dealing

with those situations because we always

want to be there for our community,"

Holland said.

Unfortunately, the thought of

opening up the church building and

allowing worshippers to return is still a

ways off. Following the United Church

of Christ's denominational guidance,

The First Church is not considering

reopening its physical doors for service

until at least September. A formal

reopening decision will be made in late


"We are looking at all of the facts

before making any kind of decision,"

said Holland. "God willing, we'll be

able to see our friends at church again


In the meantime, The First Church

is working on potentially hosting some

outdoor services to try to reconnect with

the community in some way. Plans are in

the works for a service out on the front

lawn, or even right on the front steps of

the church.

"A lot of our church is about

the community, and a lot of that

community time happens during our

coffee hour after service," Holland

said. "We can't quite have that kind

of meeting yet, but hopefully we can

congregate outside safely and try to

bring back at least some of that sense of


With the plans to conduct outdoor

services come logistical challenges as

well, and that's what Holland and the

church are working through now.

"At this point, we're really just

trying to work out the logistics,"

Holland said. "We have to decide on

things like whether we want to have

music, how to do that if we do, whether

we should take reservations for services,

and a host of other things. There's

certainly a lot to work through, but it's

all worth it to bring our community

together again."

Pictures of the church choir and members remain printed out and placed in pews. PHOTO: OLIVIA FALCIGNO

The First Church Swampscott uses this device for WiFi in order to record their services through zoom.

The First Church Swampscott keeps sanitary wipes and disinfectants at the altar at all times.

Luxury Oceanfront Condominiums


Enjoy the Dog Days of Summer

in a New Home.

We recently dropped our mortgage rates!

For residential loan rates and terms please contact

Sahag Kavlakian, NMLS # 1734667 at 978-358-8912 or skavlakian@ifs.bank

or apply online 24/7 at institutionforsavings.com.

Amesbury • Beverly • Boxford • Gloucester • Hamilton • Ipswich • Middleton • Newburyport • Rockport • Rowley • Salem • Salisbury • Topsfield

978-462-3106 • institutionforsavings.com

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Member DIF

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