Riverside Boat Club Honors Magazine Beach Booster Dick Garver

17 Apr
Riverside Boat Club names an 8-person scull after our own Dick Garver

Dick Garver and his family pose behind the “Dick Garver,” a newly christened 8-person shell.

As a member of Riverside, Dick has worked with the Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association over the past three years to encourage improvements at the park. He has spoken in favor of Magazine Beach and general DCR funding at City and State hearings, helped plan several significant meetings regarding the future of our park, and represented Riverside at cleanups and park Celebrations.

Dick is the historian of the RBC and, in 2008, wrote A Brief History of Riverside Boat Club. See: http://www.riversideboatclub.com/page.aspx?p=216. A rower on the Charles since his college days, Dick is famous at Riverside, said former RBC President Igor Belakovskiy, for his extraordinary commitment to the Club and to rowing, even during the most inhospitable weather. He is a model for us all!

Two smaller boats were named for Liane Malcos Keister, a 6-time US National Team Member, 2003 World Champion and 2004 and 2008 Olympic Alternate, and the assistant coach of Riverside’s High Performance Group and Sean Wolf, a two time US National Team Member and former Riverside Captain.

Regarding the Crusher Case Race results, the women’s race was won by Ilana Zieff, while Nick Daniloff took advantage of the age handicap and won the men’s race at the ripe young age of 79.

Thank you to Igor Belakovskiy for this information and the photograph!

Note: The Riverside Boat Club is just to the left of the swimming pool at MB Park. This home of national and international rowing champions is proud of its immigrant, workingman’s rowing heritage. It is the last of the workingman’s clubs on the Charles. Dick notes what a popular sport rowing was in the late 1800s:

“By 1869, the year Riverside Boat Club was formed, there were
approximately ninety American rowing clubs, club memberships were
booming, sixty-five regattas were held throughout the country, and
racing for prizes was attracting widespread interest. Rowing was on its
way to becoming America’s most popular spectator sport.”



27 Mar

IMG_5321The Historic Structure Report for the Powder Magazine is about to be released and the RFP for roof repairs to the Magazine is about to go out. Look for construction come May and for programming at the park this summer–including our 2014 Celebration in September! And more, too…

Save the Date: Saturday, April 26, 9am-12noon, at Magazine Beach, for DCR’s Park Serve Day/15th Annual Charles River Earth Day Cleanup! Be there. It’s fun. It’s needed. And it feels good.

Magazine Beach needing some love. Earth Day Cleanup 4.26!

Magazine Beach needing some love. Thank goodness for the Earth Day Cleanup 4.26!



Snow Fun

16 Feb

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Legislation Introduced to Add the Powder Magazine to DCR’s Historic Curatorship Program

29 Jan
Sen. Petruccelli, Marge Amster, Olivia Fiske, Cathie Zusy, Gina Foote and Rep. Jay Livingstone

Sen. Petruccelli, Marge Amster, Olivia Fiske, Cathie Zusy, Gina Foote and Rep. Livingstone

Many thanks to Senator Anthony Petruccelli and Rep. Jay Livingstone for introducing today S. 1966: An Act Enabling the Department of Conservation Management to lease real Property. This would allow the 1818 Powder Magazine to go under DCR’s Historic Curatorship Program, giving DCR the option of leasing out the structure to a “curator”/3rd party, in exchange for their converting it to its next use.

At the turn of the 20thth century, the Olmsted Brothers were hired to convert the Magazine—built to store gun powder—into a bathhouse for Charles River swimmers. Later, in the 1950ies, MDC converted the bathhouse into a garage/office. The stone block building has now sat derelict for decades. In 2014, though, with the help of the City of Cambridge and over 100 individual donors, DCR will stabilize the structure, giving it a new roof, windows, doors and security lighting. It is essential that a concession be lined up to activate the space to bring life to it before it becomes vandalized again.  The Historic Curatorship Program will allow for this without expending State dollars. A lease/conversion option like this one, makes reactivating the Magazine and park a possibility, even in this tough economy.  Thank you Olivia Fiske, Marge Amster, Gina Foote and Cathie Zusy for sharing testimony and to Renata von Tscharner and Marilyn Wellons for submitting letters of support. And we are so grateful to Sen. Petruccelli and Rep. Livingstone for their commitment to improvements at Magazine Beach.  More as we know more….

Boston APP/Lab Forum on Art in Public Places Focuses on Magazine Beach

21 Jan

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Boston APP/Lab Forum  Tuesday Jan. 28th, 6:30pm at BSA Space (290 Congress St., Boston)

Lessons from Cambridge’s Magazine Beach Project: What can we do together that we can’t do separately?

Great session. Here are the notes: http://bostonapp.org/sessionnotes/january-2014-inter-institutional-collaboration/

A COMPLEX INITIATIVE with many parts and many players is underway at Magazine Beach to restore both the 1818 Magazine itself and the riverside open space that surrounds it.  This is a significant case study about aligning the art, the public, and the place on a critical site, with participants ranging from the nearby neighborhood association to State government and agencies to artists to non-profits. While much has been accomplished, much remains to be done. Join BostonAPP/Lab: Art in Public Places on January 28, 6:30PM, at BSA Space, to examine this particular “intersection” of art, politics, and economics, and to participate in provoking new ideas not only about Magazine Beach but about other possibilities and other projects. The “lead provocateurs” are: Evan Hines (Director of Development, State Department of Conservation and Recreation); Rep. Jay Livingstone, 8th Suffolk District, Massachusetts House; Rob Trumbour, Director, ArtForming; Renata von Tscharner, Founder and President, Charles River Conservancy; Cathie Zusy, Chair, Magazine Beach Committee, Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association.

Ron Mallis and Lillian Hsu, Co-chairs, Boston.APP: Art in Public Places

Blue Heron and Oriole Nest Sightings at Magazine Beach!

19 Jan

Many thanks to Bill August for the photos of a heron that he saw at the park October 30th. Birder Janet Crystal notes that Great Blue Heron “don’t migrate like other birds. They are considered a partial migrant because they may move south from their northernmost breeding range as the weather gets colder. They will stay around this area year-round as long as there is open water where they can catch food. It’s not unusual for them to stay around throughout the winter.”

The Riverside Boat Club’s Dick Garver says that rowers often see them standing motionless on the riverbanks. Mary Holbrow added that they are often spotted at the waterfall in Newton/Watertown. Here’s a video of a heron pursuing herring during a recent herring run in the Charles (near the Watertown dam). 2013 was a great year for herring in the Charles

See this List of birds found in this area and information about them.


Oriole nest. Photo by Mary Holbrow

Oriole nest. Photo by Mary Holbrow

Mary Holbrow identified the oriole nest above, looking much like a crocheted sack, just on the park side of the pedestrian footbridge. She notes that “According to an informative piece on the National Wildlife Federation website, many birds that use string seem to like white string best. Where the nesting bird found this much of it is a puzzle, though. Possibly from fiberglass scraps and monofilament fishing line.”

After some research, she added: “I looked into bird vision a bit on line. Birds’ visual capabilities are different from ours and differ from one species to another, but in general they have a higher density of red-green-blue color receptors than we do, and also ultraviolet receptors. This makes their vision and contrast perception sharper than ours, so probably your white string shows up brilliantly to them among the greenery. They probably use rather short lengths of string, too; apparently about 6 inches is ideal. Tight knots would be a problem, though; I imagine that last year’s string, if still around, would be easier for them to get off from shriveled leaves and branches.”

Send us your photos of wildlife at the park. This 15-acre stretch along the Charles is our local preserve! 

The Stalwart Prune on Saturday Morning

12 Jan


Thank you to the so tough Riverside Boat Club and Charles River Conservancy volunteers who showed up on a cold (but not as cold as we thought), rainy (but not rainy quite yet), Saturday morning to care for our trees at the park! What a difference a morning makes.



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