A few days before Beverly Arts Fest, we were joined by Waring School students, faculty, and local community volunteers to help install Tidal Shift at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Plaza (aka Ellis Square). We had instrumental help from the city’s Forestry Division and from the First Parish Church. The installation went smoothly up from long lines of jellyfish strung up on fishing line, up to the roof line of the church’s facade.
Tidal Shift supports the efforts of Bring Your Own Bag Beverly (BYOBB) to reduce plastic bag waste through municipal legislation. The installation of Tidal Shift preceded the City Council vote on the matter by roughly a week – so we all had our fingers crossed that the legislation would pass. In fact, it passed unanimously. The legislation is getting the final approvals and we’ll link to it here once it’s complete.
However, we had to install since the project would be featured at Beverly Arts Festival and it’s important message could reach many eyes and ears: too many single use plastic bags end up in our oceans and are too often consumed by sea creatures. Tidal Shift illustrates how a plastic bag can look like a jellyfish to a hungry sea turtle.
Dozens of local businesses, groups, and schools participated over the past several months to create over 250 jellyfish from the used plastic bags that too often end up in our oceans. Overwhelmingly, local businesses were happy to support the effort by lending their space and time to our events. They too want to march forward to a sustainable future.
The project also had meaningful support from many individual volunteers, as well as critical funding from the Beverly Cultural Council, the Beverly Waste Reduction Committee, the Beverly Management Authority, and the City of Beverly. The whole effort could not have been possible with leadership from Salem Sound Coastwatch, Beverly High student (now off to MassArt!) Kevin MacDonald, the steadfast members of the grassroots BYOBB ad-hoc committee, and Councilor Estelle Rand.