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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
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Community Relations Director
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LETTER FROM THE PUBLISHER
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.
18 Master builder
20 On Foster Pond
24 Top of her class
26 Summer's signs
28 Serious fun
30 A higher calling
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04 | 01907
Need new cabinets?
WE’VE GOT YOU COVERED.
BEVERLY | NORTH READING | PLAISTOW, N.H.
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 firstname.lastname@example.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
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
about seeing – truly seeing – and finding meaning in all that surrounds us.
We prepare creative learners and leaders. No matter what comes.
Open for Pre K–8th enrollment Fall 2020. Summer programs available.
Salem MA | 978.741.0870 | phoenixschool.org
06 | 01907
PAVING A PATH TO
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,
BY ELYSE CARMOSINO AND GAYLA CAWLEY
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.
PHOTOS: SPENSER HASAK
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
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
— 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,
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
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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feel comfortable at Swampscott. There is
room for improvement and we're always
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."
PHOTOS: OLIVIA FALCIGNO
Jerry Brooks, a member of the Red Rock Rewriters, sits with one
of his published books "Owldoll."
BY DANIEL KANE
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
"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
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
"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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12 | 01907
INTERIOR PHOTOS COURTESY OF MARK VISCO
EXTERIOR PHOTO COURTESY OF JULIE GAUNT
SUMMER 2020 | 13
A peek inside
23 Lincoln Circle
SALE PRICE: $1,300,000
SALE DATE: March 26, 2020
LIST PRICE: $1,600,000
TIME ON MARKET:
184 days (September 2020)
LISTING BROKER: Julie Sagan,
Sagan Harborside International
Mach2 Team, COMPASS
PREVIOUS SALE PRICE:
PROPERTY TAXES: $18,170
YEAR BUILT: 1900
LOT SIZE: .50 acres (21,742 sq. ft)
LIVING AREA: 4,600 sq. ft.
BATHROOMS: 3 plus 2 half
In ground pool, cabana with bar/
kitchen, gas fire pit, wood-fired
brick oven, outdoor shower,
master suite with steam shower,
3rd-floor bed and bath suite,
finished lower-level with office and
playroom, family room opens to
deck, two-car garage.
Source: MLS Property Information Network.
14 | 01907
BY ELYSE CARMOSINO
n the roughly 25 years Doug
Schmidt has been homebrewing,
the beer industry has changed and
Schmidt has changed right along
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
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
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.
BY STEVE KRAUSE
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
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
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
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
for people at
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
you're caring for
people on their
it's a good
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
"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
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
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.
PHOTO: SPENSER HASAK
BY BILL BROTHERTON
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
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,
"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
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
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
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
O c e an
A v e n u e
20 | 01907
Fostering outdoor fun
BY DANIEL KANE
Foster Pond, a hot spot for kayaking in the summer and ice skating in the winter, is located off of Windsor Avenue in Swampscott.
PHOTOS: OLIVIA FALCIGNO
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
Locals flock to Foster Pond to enjoy a relaxing day on the water.
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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
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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
“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
If you go
find a job
you love, it
Elizabeth Flynn reflects on her 44 years of teaching after retiring this year from
Swampscott Middle School.
PHOTOS: OLIVIA FALCIGNO
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
“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 —
“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
“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
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
26 | 01907
Signs of the times
PHOTOS BY SPENSER HASAK
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."
PHOTOS: SPENSER HASAK
BY THOR JOURGENSEN
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
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
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
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
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,"
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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30 | 01907
BY MIKE ALONGI
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,"
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
"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
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.
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