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New Bedford Guide’s Top 15 Stories of 2011


Michael Silvia
by Michael Silvia

2011 was an eventful year for New Bedford. The City elected a new mayor and two new city council members, hosted several annual festivals and for the first time saw 1,500 Santas run through its streets.

2011 was New Bedford Guide’s first full year of operation, and I thought it would be fun to look through our statistics and reflect on the most popular stories of 2011 based solely on internet traffic. I excluded articles like Outdoor Dining and Drinking 2011, The Best Bars for Watching the NFL Playoffs, and other articles that were popular, but not stories.

Here are your top New Bedford Guide stories for 2011:

Baby Cloe Harding
Baby Chloe Harding, New Bedford Guide's Person of the Year!

1. The “Noncitizen” Issue Reaches Massachusetts by Adam DiOrio

This story had local, state and national political appeal. Massachusetts taxpayers paid $35.7 million in free emergency health care for illegal residents. Last year almost 53,000 illegal immigrants received benefits from MassHealth Limited, most of which came from emergency room visits. Regardless of which side you sit politically regarding illegal immigrants receiving state benefits, this article is a must read.

2. 2011 New Bedford Elections and 2011 New Bedford Election Results and An Interview with Jon Mitchell by Michael Silvia

2012 marks a new Year for the City of New Bedford. Nearly 19k residents turned out to vote to replace popular, out-going Mayor Scott Lang.  Jon Mitchell defeated Tony Cabral by a slim 837 votes and takes office on January 2nd, 2012. Inauguration details can be found here.

3. Baby Chloe and Chloe Harding Update: Bone Marrow Donor Found! by Adam DiOrio

Baby Chloe, of resides in Rochester, instantly become everyone’s adopted daughter in 2011. Chloe was born September 6, 2010 and in 2011 was the the youngest child in the state of Massachusetts with Acute Lymphatic Leukemia, or ALL. After several fundraisers and over three months of treatment, Chloe found a bone marrow match. We hope to provide an update on Chloe soon!

4. New Bedford Market Basket Review by Ivey Bowman

One of the biggest economic stories of the year for New Bedford was Market Basket opening to New Bedford in October of 2010.  Our review of Market Basket became popular and remains popular to this day.

Santa Fun Run New Bedford
1,500 runners participated in the New Bedford Santa 5k Fun Run 0n 10 Decemeber, 2011.

5. New Bedford Santa 5K Fun Run (10 Dec, 2011) by Michael Silvia

1,500 Santas ran through the streets on New Bedford to mark the first “Santa 5k Fun Run.” The organizers have a goal of 5,000 santas for 2012.

6. The New Bedford Portuguese Feast Survival Guide by Shonna McGrail

There isn’t a bigger celebration in New Bedford and our “Feast Survival Guide” became an instant hit with Feast-goers.

7. Vote For New Bedford as This Year’s Most Distinctive Destination by Michael Silvia

The City of New Bedford was recognized as one of the most distinctive destination in the nation by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. To win the top prize, residents had to vote daily and the top winner was selected based only on internet voting. We did our best to help New Bedford finish in 4th place out of 12 cities!

8. Jam for Jim by Butch McCarthy

This was a great story of musicians and local residents taking care of their own. Fourteen local bands put on a concert at The Seaport in and Marina to raise fund for a fellow local musician Jim Tavares who suffered a stroke early in 2011. The event was a complete success with hundreds of fans showing support.

What do you get when you combine a fridge and BMW seats? A Fridgecouch of course!

9. Whaling City Film at Zeiterion Theatre (24 Sept) by Eric Tripoli

After 10 years in the making, local film maker Jay Burke got to showcase a screening of his Whaling City film for New Bedford residents at the Zeiterion Theater on 26 September. The theater sold out 1,100 tickets and the film had great reviews. Stay tuned in 2012 as the film has been submitted to several film festivals!

10. The Crosby/Nash Experience by Dori Legge

Crosby and Nash came to the Zeiterion Theater last May. The Z’s own Dori Legge got to spent time with David Crosby and shared her experience with us.

11. The Orpheum by Amanda Lawrence

Amanda Lawrence got an inside look and provided some outstanding history and photos of the Orpheum.

Working Waterfront Festival New Bedford
New Bedford's Working Waterfront Festival was featured on National Geographic Traveler as a Top 20 Travel Event.

12. Fridgecouch by Butch McCarthy

Fridgecouch was our most unique and interesting stories of the year. Local artist Adrian Johnson created the ultimate “fridgecouch” by combining BMW seats with an old fridge.

13. Seven Must-Attend New Bedford Events by Michael Silvia

New Bedford has the most unique events in the south coast to include The Taste of the South Coast, Summerfest and Chowderfest. There are seven must attend events in New Bedford each year and our article detailed the specifics. In 2011, National Geographic Traveler featured the Working Waterfront Festival as a Top 20 Travel Destination!

14. New Bedford Vandalism – Oct 2011 by Michael Silvia

Two dummies thought it fit to tag/spray paint many historic buildings in downtown New Bedford. We provided a photo gallery for New Bedford residents to see the damage first hand. The vandals were apprehended that day and the City cleaned up the mess quickly.

15. J.Kelley Band “Shake You” Music Video Project by Michael Silvia

In 2011, The J.Kelley Band raised $10,000 through local businesses, friends, family and fans to produce a music video for their upcoming Reservoir album. 100s of local people auditioned and the video wrapped up shooting in December. A teaser video of the band playing at the Waterfront Grille in New Bedford can be seen below. Stay tuned by following them on their website or Facebook to get news on the music video and CD release coming in January, 2012!

J.Kelley Band Shake You Teaser

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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One comment

  1. I gotta go with baby Chloe, great story.

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