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Humphrey Street to host Swampscott block party

SWAMPSCOTT — The town will host a first-of-its kind block party on Humphrey Street from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday.

The portion of Humphrey Street from Mission on the Bay to Beatrice Insurance will be closed to motorists and filled with local restaurants and vendors, beer gardens, live music, and a children’s carnival area.

Although the Select Board approved the event on Aug. 2, Recreation Director Danielle Strauss said that for years, she had aspired to host a large-scale community event similar to those held in neighboring municipalities. It was this year, Strauss said, when Town Administrator Sean Fitzgerald gave her a nudge to plan the event.

“We're pretty excited about it. We have lots of vendors coming in, and it seemed like it was a really long road to fill up, but we've filled it up,” Strauss said. “When do you ever get to walk down the middle of Humphrey Street? That alone is kind of novel.”

The party will feature stands from Coastal Mass. Brewing, East Regiment Beer Company, and Granite Coast Brewery, as well as a carnival section complete with face painting and inflatable bounce houses. The event’s goals, Strauss said, are to bring the community together and support the town's local businesses.

“We have some really great restaurants and so I think it will just showcase Humphrey Street and Swampscott. It’s about bringing the community together — not only our community, but other towns too, and bringing them into Swampscott,” Strauss said.

Strauss said the town plans to turn this weekend’s block party into an annual event. Fitzgerald said the event will not be “just a party,” but the kind of celebratory event that unites the community.

“Swampscott is an extraordinary community, and our Humphrey Street downtown that sits right next to the Atlantic Ocean is a gorgeous place to spend an afternoon staring at the capital city of New England. We're really excited to, for the first time ever, have a block party really right on the water,” Fitzgerald said. “This is really about building that sense of community. Over the next few years, I hope that we continue to evolve it and it bring in elements that really help celebrate Swampscott’s unique place as a historic sea-coast community.”

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