The Witch City Sheds its Persecuting Past and Embraces the LGBT Community by Daniel F. Whitehead contributing writer
by Daniel F. Whitehead cotributing writer
The Salem Witch Memorial
Looking for a romantic, cultural, adventurous and historical vacation all in one? How about a wedding celebration set midst world class restaurants, museums, nostalgic charm and an emerging gay & lesbian community? Did you know that Salem, Massachusetts offers these exciting opportunities, along with 2 TAG approved full-service hotels, and several LGBTfriendly or gay-owned inns and B&B’s? It’s all this and more, that makes Salem an ideal location for same-gender weddings! As you stroll through the historic cobblestone streets of Salem, you find yourself surrounded by some of the best shops, boutiques, art galleries, museums and finest dining options in the Northeast. Hailed as the “Witch City” worldwide, Salem is a charming seaport town, easily accessible to Boston, 17 miles by car or the Salem Ferry to/from Long Wharf North. Many couples have chosen Salem as a destination of choice for their wedding because of its openness to everyone - not just one group, religion or way of life.
Mayor Kim Driscoll says, “Salem is proud to be a no-place-for-hate community. We have learned and teach lessons of tolerance from the tragic Witch Trials of 1692, and today Salem’s visitors, guests, and residents find a welcoming environment regardless of their lifestyle.” This is clearly the message that is spotlighted within the recent exhibit “Witches - An Evolving Perception,” at the Salem Witch Museum. Although the local community has monthly gay events, friendly bars and entertainment, it’s the culture and history, both mystical and nautical, that has evolved Salem into an ideal LGBT ceremony-reception location. The city boasts gay-owned shops, restaurants and B&B’s including the Morning Glory Bed and Breakfast that is consistently rated as the #1 B&B in Salem on Tripadvisor.com. The Finz Restaurant, located on picturesque Pickering Wharf, offers great views of the harbor and an ideal location for rehearsal dinners: sumptuous local flavors accented with signature martinis. Salem also boasts
Vol. 5 Issue 1 2010 LGBT Planning Resource Guide 45