hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

July 11, 2013

The Lamp Post

The Haverhill Gazette

---- — :Good sign for the economy: The Lamplighter is noticing an increasing number of “sold” signs on homes around the city and in neighboring towns. It’s always a good sign when real estate is moving — and local experts say summer is the time families tend to move because the kids are out of school and their studies won’t be interrupted.

July, the patriotic month: As July 4 was approaching, many homes around Haverhill were sporting not only American flags, but also other red, white and blue displays draped on their porches. In past years, the Lamplighter has noticed that some folks leave the patriotic dressings on their homes well into July, not just for the holiday. That extends the Independence Day tradition well beyond the Fourth.

Back to normal, it seems: After the secretive search of Plug Pond by state police divers a couple of weeks ago, the area seems to have returned to normal. The divers were searching for what local police said was a gun used in a crime, though they would say little else. The night after the search, a police vehicle was parked deep into the evening at the area of the search, shining its lights on the water. But the next day, all was back to normal as a couple of families tossed fishing lines into the water there.

Mayor gears up: Mayor James Fiorentini has made it official — he’s running again, this time for a sixth two-year term. This leave political types wondering if anyone will step up and take on the man who has been Haverhill’s mayor longer than anyone in history. In a mass emailing, Fiorentini said, “Friends, thank you so much for your friendship and support over the years. ... It has been a great honor representing you for the past 9 and half years. I intend to work hard over the next few months and hope to earn your trust for a new term.’’

Keeping the film faith: Haverhill High grad and best-selling author Andre Dubus III got some bad news recently, but he’s not budging from his belief that his novel “The Garden of Last Days’’ will become a movie. Hollywood star James Franco had signed on to act in the movie and direct it, but has since pulled away from the project. Dubus said he believes the movie will still be made because the script and story are strong. This would be the second movie based on his writing. He’s also working on a new novel, and his latest release, a collection of short stories titled “Dirty Love,’’ is set to hit book stores in October.

Music to everyone’s ears: It’s time again for concerts on the common, Bradford Common that is. Get ready for a summer filled with live early evening music from local performers like Paul Prue. The concerts, noted each week in the Gazette and The Eagle-Tribune, are geared toward families, who are encouraged to bring chairs, blankets and picnic food to the events.

Where are the rides?: Some people have been asking what ever happened to the carnival rides that kids used to enjoy at the city’s annual July 4 festival. Organizers of the event stopped including the rides a few years ago, but the little ones still have a chance to enjoy them in another venue. Haverhill has a carnival every year on the strip of land between the police station and parking deck, where the rides dominate the event.