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February 7, 2013

Heard Around Peabody: Watch out for the black and tans

PEABODY — Not one to be left high and dry during the wettest holiday on the calendar, City Council President Tom Gould has announced Peabody’s first annual St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast and Roast, set for Saturday, March 16, at the Wiggin Auditorium in City Hall. Presumably it won’t be the corned beef that’s roasted, but the city’s politicians.

In a wrinkle that separates his event from others, Gould won’t be collecting for any campaign war chest; the profits from the $30 entry fees will make their way to Haven From Hunger.

Mayor Ted Bettencourt, whose roots go deep enough to reach both Ireland and Portugal, is on board. And another longtime Peabody politician will be heard from, School Committeeman Dave McGeney, who has been singing Irish songs with partner Peter Moore for 30 years.

“We sing everything,” says McGeney, “from the ballads that make you want to cry to the rebel songs that make you want to stand up and break a chair.” (And doesn’t that bring back past School Committee meetings.) He credits Gould with coming up with the idea. Perhaps there’ll be some green ice cream.

Free parking for freedom fighters?

Of course, when it comes to the United States military, they’re all our freedom fighters. And Peabody veteran Daniel Heafey thinks they ought to be able to park for free. In fact, he sent the City Council a letter outlining his belief that veterans should not have to pay at city parking meters.

Noting the sacrifices made by those in the armed forces, he calls his proposal Operation Eternal Gratitude.

A postal employee now, Heafey explained that he is a veteran of the Cold War, having served in the U. S. Army from 1974 to 1978. “My proposal is this,” he wrote to the council. “Any motor vehicle (from any state) displaying any variety/type of a veteran’s license plate be allowed to park at any city parking meter free of charge.”

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