There's an awful lot going on in Salem right now. When I glance at the calendar, I see an incredible range of events - from the Salem Film Fest to wine tastings to lectures to Yoga classes to Girls' Nights - that showcase all everything that Salem is today. The Peabody Essex Museum is preparing for an awfully cool looking exhibit, Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea, and The House of the Seven Gables and Historic New England (in Salem at the Phillips House and Gedney House) are celebrating significant anniversaries this year.
I've been doing the destination marketing for Salem on-and-off 12 years now, and never has Salem had so much to offer, or offered so many reasons to come back again and again. In 1998, Salem was a beautiful, historic town that was worth a trip. Today, Salem is a hip and contemporary destination built up from incredible history that is as much fun for those of us who work and live here as it is for everyone who comes to visit. And, of course, it's still beautiful, with its stately architecture, waterfront, lighthouses, and gardens (which will bloom soon!).
Here are two notable changes in Salem today from Salem in the late 1990's:
1) We get brain cramps when we try to decide where to eat lunch because there are so many awesome options.
2) There are so many things to buy, gifts to give, indulgences to rationalize. There's no need to shop anywhere else (and we have a new prepared food store and a toy store prepping retail space downtown).
One solution for the restaurant-inspired brain cramp: Put the names of all of the restaurants into a bowl and pull one out each time you are suffering dining indecision.
The 2010 Salem Visitor Guide & Map came out in February. I keep one in my car. You never know when you will need a phone number or an address to punch into the GPS. They are great resources for people planning a trip from afar, and those of us who make regular ventures into Salem. They are also quite handy for weddings and special events. If you are planning either, let us know and we can send you the guides in bulk. You can call Destination Salem at 978-744-3663 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We'd be happy to help you.
There's a lot going on in Salem right now. Nobody can do it all - but I hope you can join us for some of it!