New England on a Pedestal

112. Season 1 Finale

June 29, 2023 Doug Farquharson Season 1 Episode 12
112. Season 1 Finale
New England on a Pedestal
More Info
New England on a Pedestal
112. Season 1 Finale
Jun 29, 2023 Season 1 Episode 12
Doug Farquharson

An extended season one finally comes to a close with this recap episode. We take a look back and update some of the topics from previous episodes and take a field trip to the mid-coast of Maine,

Show Notes Transcript

An extended season one finally comes to a close with this recap episode. We take a look back and update some of the topics from previous episodes and take a field trip to the mid-coast of Maine,

Hey Pedestal Peeps around the world, it’s me, your host for the past dozen episodes of New England on a Pedestal, Doug Farquharson. And believe it or not we have finally reached the end of our inaugural season. A slightly extended first season, I might add. I initially envisioned each season lasting for a year. Our initial episodes went live in September of 2021, and I thought that we could do twelve episodes in that first year, making a season run from September to the following August. But then, I thought that’s kind of an odd timing for a season. So, let’s make it a calendar year season and we can finish in December 2022. Sounded good to me. But then we actually got to December of 2022, and we didn’t have those twelve episodes complete. Oops! Well, one thing led to another, and six months went by and here we are. The twelfth episode has finally arrived! And now going into the second season, it makes sense to do a July to June season and we are looking at actually publishing every two weeks for a total of twenty-six season two episodes! A bit ambitious, yes. But I think it’ll be worth it.

As I said way back in the beginning, podcasting is new to me. Well, at least being on this side of things! I know there are more professional, complicated, or maybe even easier ways of producing a podcast and I’ve made a couple of changes over the last year or so. But New England on a Pedestal is still pretty much a one man show. I do all the scouting, research, writing, recording, editing, publishing, and everything in between. I had to research and learn about recording and editing software, figure out how to make a ghetto sound booth without breaking the bank, find and learn about a publishing and hosting site and decide between free ones and paid ones and then again find an option that wouldn’t drain my wallet. And all that must fit in with everything else life throws at us. Jobs, family, work on the house, travel, and all that other day to day stuff. I’m trying to make it have a more regular spot on my weekly calendar and hopefully that will make the upcoming season more consistent and less stressful when I’m trying to meet a deadline and realize that I missed it. Again. Let’s hope so anyway!

That’s not to say that creating this thing and making it happen thus far hasn’t been fun and rewarding. Indeed, it has! I’ve been having a blast doing it. I love the idea and concept of it. Obviously, right? Or I wouldn’t be putting my time and money into it. I really enjoy the research and writing. Thank goodness for the ol’ interwebs and being able to find photos and descriptions of the statue themselves and information on them and their subjects. Sure saves me a lot of gas money and time! I’ve come to enjoy the recording and editing, too. Fortunately, I’ve gotten a little better and definitely faster at doing it. Above all, I really enjoy going on my host site, and being able to view a bunch of statistics regarding everything from individual episodes to being able to see how many and where downloads have happened based on a variety of time frames. And probably the biggest surprise, as I mentioned in one previous episode, was the international listeners in various parts of the world. Seriously, thank you for subscribing and continuing to listen. It means a lot to me!

Since this is the Season One finale, what say we take a look back at some of the statues and places we’ve visited thus far. The Starter was a good place to begin this little podcasting adventure. A couple more Boston Marathons have been run since then. The statue of Bobbi Gibb, The Girl who Ran has been unveiled at the Hopkinton Center for the Arts on October 5th, 2021. Sadly, Rick Hoyt, one of the subjects of the Yes You Can statue has since passed away. The legacy that he and his father created is incredibly inspiring and will continue to inspire people of all abilities for decades to come.

Sometime after episode 1 went live, my son, Alec, was working a delivery route when he found himself driving along the section of the Boston Marathon known as Heartbreak Hill. He saw the tree we mentioned that had been transformed into a marathon runner and stopped to take some photos of it for me. I’ll try to remember to post some on our social media sites. While he was there, the owner of the house came by and struck up a conversation with him. Charlotte told him about an article that Runner’s World magazine ran back in December of 2020. In it, she speaks about hosting marathon watch parties since the 1990s and how they fought to save the beautiful maple tree for years. Well, eventually there just was no saving the tree. Getting an idea from carvings she had seen made from trees in New Hampshire, when the maple was cut down, the stump was left tall enough to carve out a marathon runner. Together, she and her husband began searching for a tree carver and found Ken Packie in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts. Taking inspiration from the tree itself, Packie went to work with chainsaws, grinders, and blowtorches. Thirty to forty hours later, he had a finished product. He is quoted in the article as saying, “I hope this will become an inspiration for people to keep pushing,” Packie said. “Twenty miles into a race going up hill is a tough spot, and if this can help them push forward, I want them to see it. This is not a super lean runner. He’s the every man’s runner, and if he can do it, you can. Hopefully Heartbreak Hill won’t be a heartbreak for them.” Be sure to read the full article at Runner’s World online and big thanks to Alec and Charlotte for passing along this fantastic story.

When we visited Portsmouth, NH to see the Vigilance statue outside of the Court Street firehouse, it was unfortunately behind a construction fence and difficult to see. Since then, the work on the buildings next door appears to have been completed and the plaza reopened. There are some great newer photos online if you google it. Vigilance is one of my favorite statues in all of season one.

Episode three found us in Portland, Maine visiting Snoody, the Maine Lobsterman. If you recall, I said there were actually a couple of other renditions of that statue. My wife Gail and I spent a wonderful weekend at The Driftwood Inn on Bailey Island in October of 2022. While exploring the area, we found the statue of H. Elroy Johnson in his hometown, and I recorded this little bit:

<ocean waves crashing ashore in the background>

We took a field trip today on a wonderful mid-October Fall day here in Maine and we found ourselves on Bailey Island. We went down to Land’s End where we found another version of The Maine Lobsterman. Bailey Island is where Elroy Johnson, who the artist modeled his statue after,  lived and worked out of and lobstered from and it was kind of cool today as we were watching various lobster boats ply the waters out on the bay picking up lobster traps and working. As you can hear, it’s kind of wavy today. Lots of um…it’s calming down after a storm from yesterday. So, lots of waves crashing upon the rocks. It’s kind of cool to walk around Bailey Island and see where Elroy Johnson would have lived and worked for most of his life. The statue itself is right outside of Land’s End Gift Shop, a really wonderful store with all kinds of local Maine artists. They have all kinds of stuff in there from paintings and photographs, sea glass, driftwood stuff. Really, really cool. Well worth your time. The statue itself sits outside out in a garden up on a rock pedestal. <passers-by heard in background> It was erected September 30, 1976 and he overlooks Casco Bay, over a couple islands. Beautiful spot. Highly recommend you come here and visit. <crashing waves fade out>

We had a little fun with Framingham’s Seasonal Statues again last December when some folks took selfies in front of a few of them and posted to our social media. I hope to see them around that town again later this year! I recently went by the new version of Shoppers World, where those toy soldiers originally stood watch. I guess the old adage about change is the only thing that is constant in life must be true as I noticed several of the buildings had been torn down and something new is being built in their place. Rumors have it a supermarket.

I had been hoping for better ends to the Celtics and Bruins seasons this year while working on The Secretary of Defense and The Goal, but alas, it was not to be. And the season was looking better for the Red Sox when Play Ball went live, but as any Boston fan will tell you, it ain’t over until it’s over. Let’s hope there’s baseball in October at Fenway this year!

Season One has been a lot of fun for me and a huge learning curve. A lot of friends and family have been very supportive, and many have made suggestions for upcoming episodes. I’m planning on getting to many of them in season two. And like I often say, if you the listener have any suggestions, please feel free to reach out via social media or email at That’s New England on a Pedestal, all one word at F A R Q I E dot com.

I’ve started reaching out to a variety of people and places that I’d love to interview in order to add another layer to our podcast. I’ve recently acquired some portable recording equipment that should make that easier and enable me to “report from the field” as they say.

We are slowly creeping towards one thousand total downloads. It’s my hope that with a more regular publishing schedule those numbers will start to grow more quickly. The list of directories and platforms that are carrying us has increased, too. We can be found on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podcast Index, Amazon Music, IHeartRadio, Tunein+Alexa, Podcast Addict, Podchaser, PlayerFM, Overcast, Castro, and several others. You can also download episodes directly from the Buzzsprout webite.

I’d really appreciate it if you could take a few minutes and subscribe to us on whatever service you use and leave a comment. A lot of platforms use the number of subscribers and reviews as an indicator for moving a podcast up in its listings. Like and follow New England on a Pedestal on Facebook and Instagram. Every little bit helps us get our name out to more people and build a larger audience.

As always, I want to thank Jason for the artwork, Sam for the music, and Jake for making it into something even I could figure out how to use! Thanks to Bekka who is always saving me from my own disastrous attempts at a social media presence. And to my wonderful wife, Gail for always encouraging and supporting me.

But the biggest thanks go to you, the listener. Without you all this is for naught. Thank you very, very much!

See you in Season Two! Until then, be safe, be well, and keep discovering.