SWIM News and Archive (Current and Archived)

Watch Here For Our Meeting Dates, News and SWIM Updates!


SWIM is now officially a non-profit organization. Our official name is: Nahant SWIM Inc. The IRS has sent us the documentation and posted our status of 501(c)(3) on the web!

View/download the 2014 Annual Meeting Minutes | PDF Format

Click Here For Our 'Scoop The Poop" Info Card

New Items Collected Form | Download and Print
2016 January through March 2016
  April through October 2016
  November 2016
  December 2016
2015 January and March 2015
  April and May 2015
  June and July 2015
  August through October 2015
  October through December 2015
  Dead Bird Report | Dec 17 2014 - Apr 11 2015
  Beaches Clean Up Day April 11, 2015
2014 June 14, 2014
  July and August 2014
  September through November 2014
  December 2014 and January 2015
2013 December, 2013 - May 2014
  November 2013 to May 2014
  September 25, 2013
  August 10, 2013
  July 13, 2013
  June 18, 2013
2012 Oct.-Nov. 2012
  Sept. 8, 2012
  July 7, 2012
  August 4, 2012


COASTSWEEP, the state-wide beach cleanup sponsored by the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management and the Urban Harbors Institute at UMass Boston, will kick off its 23rd year on Saturday, September 25 at Nahant Beach Reservation. A special thanks will be extended to the hundreds of volunteers who have participated in an Adopt-a-Beach activity this year.

Thousands of volunteers throughout Massachusetts turn out each year for this event, which is part of an international campaign organized by The Ocean Conservancy in Washington, DC. Participants all over the world collect marine debris and record what they find. This information is then used to help reduce future marine debris problems.

Cleanups are being scheduled throughout eastern Massachusetts in September and October, including one at the Marine Science Center as part of our Annual Open House on September 18th from 10am to 3pm. To participate or organize a cleanup, go to the COASTSWEEP website (www.coastsweep.umb.edu) or checkout COASTSWEEP on Facebook!

Festivities kickoff at 9:30 a.m. We are asking folks to get there at 9:00 to register and have a cup of coffee and a donut. A light lunch will also be provided afterwards.

For More Info Contact:

Carole McCauley | Outreach Program Coordinator
Northeastern University Marine Science Center
430 Nahant Road Nahant, MA 01908
(781) 581-7370, x321
c.mccauley@neu.edu | www.marinescience.neu.edu

By Kait Taylor / The Daily Item | Tuesday, July 23, 2013
SWIM group educates Nahant youth on recycling

NAHANT — There’s nothing like trying to scare a kid with the image of a choking turtle to get them to recycle. 

Holding a popped latex balloon and its accompanying ribbon, Safer Waters in Massachusetts President Vi Patek told an audience of 30 children in the Nahant Recreation Department Park League that the leftover party favor was “the most dangerous thing on the beach” for animals and advised them against letting the balloons go.

“Turtles think they are jellyfish and they eat them,” explained Patek. “And then it stays in their belly and they die.”

For their second year presenting a program on cleaner beaches for Nahant Recreation, Patek and other SWIM volunteers put on a skit to show the kids how they can do their part to have a cleaner, safer ocean for both children and animals.

ML Elementary science teacher Adam Walker and SWIM volunteer ML Cort become “Bobbie the Beachcomber” and “Connie the Cormorant” to show how “the power of recycling” can save birds, fish and other marine animals from digesting, choking on or getting tangled in the trash that can end up on a beach. Walker donned a vest of recycling knowledge to learn the basics of recycling to save “Connie’s” friends.

“They understand when it’s physical,” said Patek about the highly animated skit, which ran about 15 minutes long.

“It’s crazy and wacky, and that’s what you need to get the kids’ attention,” said park program Director Sue Rosa. She said she thought if any of the kids remember to pick up popped balloons at the beach, the lesson was successful.

The skit was part of SWIM’s week-long event on recycling. On Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., scientists from Northeastern University’s Marine Science Center will bring a touch tank to the Flash Road Playground to learn about the recycling numbers on the bottoms of plastic items. On Friday at the same time, the kids will decorate a free cloth shopping bag with “recycling art,” and there will be a logo drawing contest for stickers to label trash barrels for recycling.

If the kids were shocked by the image of animals tangled in plastic, they didn’t let on. Some ran off to play basketball, but a big group gathered around local artist Heather Goodwin’s table to paint “scales” for a large sea serpent sculpture as part of their project for the second annual 01908 Art Gala on the Island.

But for some, the skit left an impression that SWIM was hoping for. As she painted her scales a bright green color, park participant Skye Bascon, 11, said she thought the skit was “a good idea to help little kids recycle more often.”

Bascon said when she’s at the beach lying on her towel, she usually doesn’t want to get up to clean up her trash. “But then I usually do because of basically what they said — it harms the animals, and it’s their ocean.”

Touch Tanks And More!
On Wednesday, July 24th and Friday July 26th at 10 AM there are more events: touch-tanks from the Marine Science Center, an event to learn about recycling-numbers on the bottoms of plastic items, a logo drawing contest for stickers to label trash barrels for recycling, free cloth shopping bags for kids to decorate with their own recycling art, and a sculpture of The Nahant Seaserpent created from drink cartons.  

Since 1984 SWIM has been an informal group of people dedicated to the health of the waters and beaches of Nahant under the inspiration and care of Polly Bradley. She retired from her leadership in 2010 and since then has gradually passed the leadership over to Vi Patek. We decided that it would be best if SWIM were given structure to provide durability and continuity into the future. After much work by Polly and Vi, we now have a set of By-Laws for SWIM. We also believe that SWIM should seek 501(c)(3) status.

We have a SWIMTEAM!
On March 31, eighteen people attended our first Annual Meeting and voted in our new by-laws and new Directors. Our Directors are Vi Patek (President), Tess Bauta (Vice President), Salvatore Genovese (Treasurer), Kristy Lee (Secretary), Patty Flint (liaison with NE University), Maryliz Cort, Carl Jenkins. Our Advisors are Bill Crawford, John Benson, Polly Bradley and Michael Manning. Now we can move forward in an orderly way to further SWIM's goals of focusing on water quality through education, publicity and community-building. We will be calling on you for input on issues as we swim into the future.

Thanks Yous: To Michael Rauworth for critiquing our by-laws, Robert Wilson for updating our website, and Susan Thomas for volunteering to head a committee on media (she is already a Beachkeeper).

Our first Adopt a Beach of 2012 event is this Sunday, April 15 at 2 p.m. (low tide is 1:42 p.m.). If you are not yet a Beachkeeper, please let me know and you are welcome to join a Beachteam. We now have 9 beaches in the Adopt a Beach program on Nahant!! Two are new this year: Crystal Beach (next to Marjoram Park) whose new Beachkeepers are Nancy Wilson & Susan Snow; Bathing Beach (directly behind the Marine Science Center) whose new Beachkeepers are Debby & Bob Vanderslice. A total of ten people volunteered to be the lead Beachkeepers of these two beaches! You are all welcome to join these Beachkeepers and any others at any of our beaches. Bring the children! Just let me know – see contact information at bottom of this page.

Our 9 Beaches are: Bathing Beach, Black Rock Beach (aka Doggie), Canoe Beach, Crystal Beach, Forty Steps Beach, Johnson Beach, Pond Beach, Short Beach and Tudor Beach.

We have two more new Beachkeepers, Heather Goodwin & Kerry Alice Collins (including their Girl Scout Troop members!), who will volunteer at Short Beach. Of our 6 new Beachkeepers, 4 are signed up for a training session given by Salem Sound Coastwatch this Saturday, April 14, 9:30 - 11:30am Beverly Cooperative Bank, Community Room, 87 Lafayette St (next to Wendy's), Salem, MA 01970. If you would like to go to this training event, contact info@salemsound.org or call 978-741-7900.

Protecting Nahant from the Ravages of Oil Spills

Report on the North Shore Geographic Response Plans

By Susan Maguire

On May 14th, Susan Maguire represented Safer Waters in Massachusetts (SWIM) at a meeting with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) in Gloucester, MA.  The purpose of the meeting was to learn about the DEP Geographic Response Plans (GRP), and to begin the work on a GRP for Nahant.  The GRP is a consensus plan developed before an oil spill.  In the case of a spill, the DEP will quickly develop a four-page plan with maps and tables and send it to the local officials in the affected site.

The meeting was conducted by Ben Bryant of NUKA Research Planning Group LLC.  The goal of the GRP initiative is to identify North Shore sites (Nahant is a site), and work with the site communities to: create and implement plans in coastal areas away from oil spills, set up response trailers with equipment, and train first responders (usually fire department personnel) in the use of the equipment.  The criteria for implementing a plan are: 1) sensitivity: salt marshes are the most sensitive, 2) probability: from ships, marinas, and tankers on highways near coastal areas, and 3) feasibility: coastal habitat and strength of currents.

Ben reviewed the 27 North Shore sites (which may become 30), gave an overview of the GRP initiative, conducted a Q&A session, and then divided participants into small groups for a workshop.  During the workshop representatives of each site were given maps of their locales and were asked to label them for 11 criteria such as fish, birds, threatened species, human use, and coastal habitat.

Susan returned from the meeting with maps and criteria charts and met with Polly Bradley to discuss next steps.   They organized a series of meetings with the following individuals to move the Nahant GRP forward:

1)  Mark Cullinan, Town Administrator, to review the Gloucester meeting and the GRP, and to discuss next steps

2)  John Benson and Linda Pivacek, from the Open Space Committee, to more precisely label the Nahant map

4)  Marine Science Center Director, Dr. Geoffrey Trussell and Professor of Biology, Joseph Ayers, (both affiliated with Northeastern University) to discuss sensitive areas and ocean current maps

5)  James Ward, Nahant Harbormaster, to review the GRP and discuss next steps

6)  Mark Cullinan, James Ward, Fire Chief Robert Ward, Ben Bryant, Linda Pivacek, and the head of the DEP in MA to discuss the GRP for Nahant, and then conduct a site visit by boat around Nahant to further refine the labeling of the Nahant map and our GRP

James Ward conducted a boat tour of Nahant for Ben, the DEP representative, Linda, and Susan.  The goal was to have a first-hand look at our coastline in order to determine the locations of birds, seals, shellfish beds, and eel grass, and to pinpoint locations where GRP tactics might be implemented and equipment deployed. 

The meeting and boat trip were very productive.  NUKA and the DEP understand who we are, how precious our island is, and how they can help us maintain the pristine nature of our coastline. 

Time line:  Draft GRPs will be ready for a review meeting in August.  Local teams will approve the Plan in September, and the Plans become official in November.

 If you have any questions about this plan please contact Mark Cullinan, Robert Ward or Polly Bradley.   Additional information about the North Shore Geographic Response Plan (GRP) project, and about GRPs in general, is available through the project website: Click Here

For an archive of news about SWIM from 2004 through 2010, see the Nahant Harbor Review http://www.nahant.com. To access the Harbor Review Current Issue and Archive, click on ENTER HERE. 

For an archive of news in the Lynn Daily Item, see www.itemlive.com and search for "Safer Waters in Massachusetts"

NOAA Anounces Free Nautical "BookletCharts" | CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO

Nahant Causeway Wind Turbine Project

The Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) has issued a Request for Response (RFR) for the proposed Nahant Causeway wind turbine project, with a closing date of 02/17/2010.

Click here to find out more about the Wind Turbine Project for the Nahant Causeway!

Subject: Award for Polly Bradley

Joan LeBlanc
Date: October 27, 2009 10:11:42 AM EDT

Dear Friends of SWIM,
I'm writing to let you know that the Saugus River Watershed Council will present Polly Bradley with a River Stewardship Award at it's annual meeting on November 17th, 6:30 p.m. at the Hilltop on Route 1 in Saugus. Polly was selected as a recipient this year because of her outstanding efforts in working to designate the Lower North Shore Area as a No Discharge Area for boater waste. I hope you will consider joining us at the annual meeting to thank Polly for all her hard work.


Joan LeBlanc
Executive Director
Saugus River Watershed Council


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