The Shoreline is Looking Spectacular

26 Sep

IMG_8947Nine young trees have been planted and thousands of perennials and shrubs, including Hollow Joe-Pye Weed, Steeplebush and Winterberry, are being planted now. Thank goodness for tonight’s rain.


R. Bates & Sons is preparing the concrete base for the granite of the grassy terrace wall and the pervious 8′-wide path along the shoreline has been laid, along with the asphalt path leading up to the Powder Magazine. It’s thrilling to see and worth a visit to the park.

The Design of Phase II-2 is Funded

Screen Shot 2019-09-16 at 2.31.47 PMMonday night the City Council approved the CPA Committee’s recommendations to invest $47.7k to complete the design and engineering studies for the next phase of work at the park. This will replace the sunken parking lot behind the swimming pool with a grassy beach, better integrating the pool with the site, and add a dock and outlook to increase engagement with the river. This will match a $50k earmark that Rep. Livingstone and Sen. Boncore advocated for in the State budget. Thank you, all!

Canoe/Kayak Launch & Outlook Officially Opens

23 Sep



(L to R) Rep. Jay Livingstone, DCR’s Comm. Leo Roy, Magazine Beach Partner’s Cathie Zusy, Cambridge Mayor Marc McGovern and Budget Director Taha Jennings officially open the new boat launch and outlook.

On Sunday, the new boat launch and outlook officially opened with a ribbon cutting. This was the 4th official DCR event at the park over the past 15 months. Roy will step down from his 3.5-year tenure as Commissioner this Friday. During his leadership, Magazine Beach Park has witnessed a renaissance. The Powder Magazine interior renovation was completed; the spray deck built and wading pool removed; boat launch and outlook built; and current shoreline and Powder Magazine patio and terrace improvements begun. (Thank you, Comm. Roy!)

Most of this work was seeded by Cambridge Community Preservation Act (CPA) funding. At 17 acres, Magazine Beach is Cambridge’s second largest park. Its free outdoor Olympic-sized pool, ball fields, and old shade trees draw thousands of bathers, soccer and baseball players, and picnickers each summer.

Thank you to launch and outlook funders: DCR, the City of Cambridge, the Cambridge Redevelopment Authority, Kimco, BioMed Realty, the Judy Record Fund/Mass Audubon, the Lawrence & Lillian Solomon Foundation and individuals. And many thanks to CRLS’s Charles River Cleanup Project for doing a park cleanup just before our ribbon cutting.

Photos by Bimal Nepal


Comm. Roy, who has done so much for Magazine Beach Park, retires Friday.

Biogen Cleanup

19 Sep

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Just before our pre-party park walk and Benefit, September 13, 50 Biogen volunteers picked up trash, weeded, removed black swallow-wort, and painted water fountains and benches at the park. They also removed the cobblestones and bricks and tarps from the eastern “phragmites” swale. (I’m afraid that the phragmites won that battle. They are brilliantly designed to spread and to dominate and have–sadly, for the bugs and the birds.)  The Charles River Conservancy partnered with us, providing tools, paints and leadership. Thank you, CRC.

Biogen also served as a lead sponsor for our Benefit. Thank you, Biogen!

Take note: Sunday, Sept. 22 at 2pm, we’ll have the Official Ribbon Cutting for our new canoe/kayak launch & outlook. Join in, by boat or by foot, for this celebration of public access to the Charles. Meet at the launch, on the eastern side of the park, beside the BU Bridge. DCR’s Commissioner Leo Roy will be there. This will be one of his last official events before he retires Sept. 27. We will miss him. He’s been an amazing friend of Magazine Beach!

Another Enchanted Evening: Our Benefit Party at Riverside

16 Sep

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Over 100 turned out Saturday night for our Benefit Party for the park. The Ruta Beggars, fresh from Berklee, played bluegrass as attendees ate, drank and enjoyed being right on the river, on the first floor balcony and docks of the Riverside Boat Club. (Thank you Riverside, sponsors, attendees, and volunteers!)

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DCR’s Project Manager Rick Corsi led a pre-party tour of the park, showcasing ongoing projects: improvements to the shoreline path, opening up river views, planting trees and native plants, adding new seating and expanding the patio and terrace around the Powder Magazine.

Magazine Beach Park

At the event, a rendering of the next phase of work at the park, Phase II-2, was debuted. Phase II-2 will replace the sunken parking lot behind the swimming pool with a grassy beach, better integrating the pool with the park, add a dock and outlook, and replace invasives with native grasses along the shoreline.  Now to find funding for this…

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And Representative Jay Livingstone, DCR’s Commissioner Leo Roy, and Cambridge’s City Manager, all major supporters of the park, spoke of their ongoing commitment to realizing the park’s potential. It’s amazing what we’ve accomplished together: we’ve restored the 1818 Powder Magazine, built a spray deck, boat launch and outlook, and are now engaged in shoreline and patio and terrace improvements around the Magazine.

Take note: Sunday, September 22 at 2pm, is the official Ribbon Cutting for the new canoe/kayak launch and outlook. Join in, by boat or by foot, for this celebration of public access to the Charles. Meet at the launch, on the eastern side of the park, beside the BU Bridge.

And, once again, thank you Benefit Sponsors!!!!!!

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Benefit Party 9.14 @ Riverside

25 Aug

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Join us Saturday, September 14, 5:30-7:30pm, for our annual fundraiser for the park. (No paper invites this year. THIS is the invite.) Enjoy appetizers, drinks, live music by The Ruta Beggars, and the sunset, from the Riverside Boat Club, overlooking the Charles. And help us keep our momentum going. All proceeds will go to park improvements.

Note: This year, our party will be on the 1st floor of RBC, on the balcony and docks, so prepare to watch a GORGEOUS sunset over the Charles and bring layers. There is cover if the weather turns messy…

Purchase your tickets now! We will be selling tickets at the door (by check, cash or credit card), but we can plan better if you buy tickets ahead.

Tickets: $45 each/$80 for two

To pay: Write a check to: Magazine Beach Partners, Inc.

Mail to: Cathie Zusy, President, MBP, 202 Hamilton St., Cambridge, MA 02139 OR pay by Paypal by pushing the DONATE button on our home page. If you can’t join us, consider a tax-deductible donation.

Note: Just before the Benefit, at 5pm, DCR’s Project Manager Rick Corsi will lead a half hour walk of park, showcasing work happening there now. To join in, meet at the new canoe/kayak launch on the eastern end of the park. The walk will end up at the RBC and the Benefit Party.

Thank you, event sponsors!!!!

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The Water is Crisp & Clear

18 Aug


But the pool closes this Thursday. Swim there while you can. It’s quiet there today… The pool’s open 11:15am-6:45pm daily. (The spraydeck closes Sept. 2.)

$50k Earmark for Magazine Beach 

A few weeks ago, Governor Baker signed into law another $50k earmark for the park. This will be used to fund shovel-ready plans for the next phase of improvements to the park. THANK YOU, Rep. Jay Livingstone and Sen. Joseph Boncore for your ongoing commitment the park! And thanks, Gov. Baker!

Phase II-2 will include:

*replacing the sunken parking lot between the swimming pool and the river with a “grassy beach,” better integrating the pool and the park;

*adding a dock (increasing engagement with the river); and

*removing the invasives along the shoreline.

Magazine Beach Partners has submitted a request for $47,700 as well to the Cambridge Community Preservation Act Committee to match these funds.

SAVE THE DATE: Saturday, September 14, 5:30-7:30pm, for our Benefit Party for the park. More info coming soon.






Our 2019 Summer Series Comes to a Close

12 Aug

Tanglewood Marionettes copyLast Thursday the Tanglewood Marionettes brought magic and whimsy with butterflies, clowns, ballerinas, princes, princesses, elves, mice, caterpillars, spiders and bees, all, performing in a Fairy Circus.

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This was the 6th full summer of programs provided by Magazine Beach Partners, getting kids outside, and young and older out enjoying the park. This year’s events included the Busted Jug Band, the Boston Lyric Opera’s Barber of Seville, Devin Ferreira & Bands and Knucklebones, a Strum Along, African drumming and so much more.

Over 1,400 participated in 22 programs. Thousands more have swum in the free outdoor pool, splashed at the spraydeck, and picnicked at the park. The pool is open until August 22 and the spray deck until September 2. SAVE THE DATE: Our annual Benefit Party for the park will be Saturday, Sept. 14. More info about that very soon.

Most photos by Doug Feinberg. Thank you, Doug, for serving as our Program Coordinator!

Tanglewood Marionettes Bring Fairy Circus Thursday

7 Aug

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Thursday, August 8 @ 10am, Tanglewood Marionettes will close our series with their Fairy Circus. Look for puppets to dance, play instruments, juggle, contort, transform, and fly through the air with the greatest of ease, all to the best-loved music of favorite composers. Because rain is predicted, the show will happen not at the park, but at the Morse School auditorium (40 Granite St.). Please join us. And thank you Community Schools for co-sponsoring this program.

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Tuesday, Cambridge Arts brought us Who Came Up With That? UNH’s Little Red Wagon theatrical troupe shared an original play celebrating the ingenuity of creative folks, through time, solving big problems. Among those featured were Johannes Gutenberg, Thomas Edison, Madame Curie and George Washington Carver.

Our summer programs have brought hundreds of children to Magazine Beach, listening to stories, exploring nature, and enjoying music and theater. How good it is to see kids exploring and enjoying and delighting–all outside!

“Jazz Hop” & Play

5 Aug


Devin Ferreira and friends and Knucklebones delighted over 200 at the park last night with our last of four Sunday evening events. 

Young musicians and bands, including Ava Sophia, Troubadour Soul, Anders Olson Band and many others performed mostly original work. And Knucklebones, brought balls, hoots, bouncy rubber ponies,  tetherball, an obstacle course and more to play with.

Many thanks to Devin and friends, MC Amanda Shea, to Knucklebones, the City of Cambridge (who provided the stage), and to Program Coordinator Doug Feinberg who made it happen. Summer sponsors:  MIT, Kimco, BioMed Realty, Brookfield Properties, and the Charles River Conservancythank goodness for you!

Still, this week at the park:

Tuesday, August 6 @ 10am: Children’s Theater, A Time Traveling Adventure, co-sponsored by Cambridge Arts

Thursday, August 8 @ 10am: Tanglewood Marionettes brings their Fairy Circus, co-sponsored by Cambridge Community Schools

Note: In case of rain, programs will move indoors to the Morse School (40 Granite Street).


Moving to the Beat: African Drumming & Concert Sunday

1 Aug

This morning well loved African drumming teacher Jafar Manselle and friends got kids dancing, singing, and drumming at the park.


Sunday at 5:30pm, come for more fun. Emmy-award winning composer Devin Ferreira and his band will play family friendly “jazz hop” and Knucklebones will bring games and activities, including a ball pit, climbing structures, fitness machines, giant tubes, Rodys (& Rody Max), Gaga, Double-Sided Basketball, Cornhold, Ladderball and much more.


The pool is open daily from 11:15am-6:45pm. Come cool down at the park!