The Hingham ‘Cast is a hyper local, weekly podcast that looks at the pandemic through the lens of one small town: Hingham, Massachusetts. Hosted by award-winning broadcast journalist Ally Donnelly, The Hingham 'Cast explores how to build better communities through meaningful conversations. We talk about our health, our kids, our schools, our money, our jobs, our relationships, joys and struggles. Even as the pandemic keeps us apart, there is a real opportunity to come together. Through intimacy and empathy, we get to know our neighbors and what drives them. Nothing is off the table. We'll explore everything from race, religion, sexuality and politics, to eating, drinking, binging and how to leave that puppy you swore you'd never get. Join us!
Local Elections: School Committee
There are three open seats for the Hingham School Committee. Four candidates are running: Aly Anderson, incumbent Nes Correnti, Matt Cosman and Matt LeBretton. If elected, they will help make up a volunteer body that has oversight of and responsibility for the school system, has the power to approve budgets, hire and fire the superintendent, negotiate salaries and set the direction for our schools. In partnership with the Hingham Anchor, hear where the candidates stand on spending priorities, teacher burnout, special education and out-of-district placements and working with incoming superintendent Margaret Adams.
New Head for Hingham Schools
A conversation with Dr. Margaret Adams, incoming Superintendent of Hingham Public Schools. Adams responds to the recent, explosive school committee meeting where interim Superintendent Dr. Gary Maestas said he would request "bodyguards and a bunker to be installed in my home," because of "the aggressive nature of some of our community members," around the issue of mask mandates in local schools. Adams, whose contract was approved shortly before the disturbing revelations said, "There's a lot of healing that needs to be done around the pandemic. We think the pandemic is over. It likely is not." Noting that the school committee had earlier voted to lift the mask ban in public schools, she went on, "As we drop this mandate, we likely will be wearing masks again at some point. However, we've grown so much. Let's build upon the resiliency, the perseverance of our young people, our educators, and build a stronger school and a stronger community."
We also talk with Dr. Adams about social-emotional health of students; diversity, equity and inclusion in our schools; the potential of a new arts director for Hingham and what causes her the most stress as she thinks about the challenges ahead. Have a listen!
The Blizzard of '22
On this episode, we talk with Hingham Meteorologist Michael Page about the Blizzard of 2022. Page shares why this storm was declared a blizzard, our snow totals and how they're measured, how the blizzard ranks in terms of other historic South Shore storms and the effects of climate on this and other storms. The local meteorologist also tells us what he thinks the rest of the winter will look like. We also check in with two Hingham High School students giving back to their community in bad weather.
A Joyful Noise
The Hingham Memorial Bell Tower is the only, freestanding tower of its kind in North America. Built in the early 1900s, it's a tribute to the ancestors of Hingham's first settlers from Hingham, England. There are 10 working bells in its belfry. The smallest bell is more than 500 pounds. The largest weighs about the same as a Honda Civic! Every Saturday, volunteers rise early to ring the bells for our community. They don't play songs in the traditional sense. This isn't chiming where a mallet or clapper hits the inside of the bell, this is a technique called change bell ringing. Ropes dangle down from the massive bells and the volunteers use their whole bodies to pull the bells upside down, through a full circle. The bells can't be turned fast enough to hit two notes in a row so the ringing is an ever-changing pattern of bell after bell after bell being rung. A joyful noise!
South Shore Brew
We sit down with three South Shore brewers to get the latest on the local craft beer scene. Joining Ally are Mike Dyer, co-owner of Untold Brewing in Scituate; Dino Funari, founder of Vitamin Sea Brewing in Weymouth; and Russ Heissner, founder of Barrel House Z also in Weymouth. Where do they get their inspiration? What beer makes them most proud? Is there an ingredient brewers are using that goes "too far" in the name of innovation? The men also weigh in on the sexual harassment allegations that tore through the craft brewing scene, first in Massachusetts and then quickly around the world, earlier this year. They share their candid responses and what changes they've made in their own breweries. It's a thoughtful conversation on the tight-knit South Shore brewing scene that continues to grow. Join us!
Thank you to episode sponsor Framebridge! Fantastic, affordable custom framing. Visit them online or at their Hingham Store at the Derby Street Shops. www.Framebridge.com. Use promo code HINGHAM for 15% off your first order.
Two Carnivores Walk Into a Plant Bar...
We bring two of Hingham's biggest meat-eaters to Cambridge to check out Plant Pub. The concept restaurant is a new eatery from Hingham native Pat McAuley and celebrated chef Mary Dumont. Along with a thoughtful list of craft beers and seltzers, Plant Pub serves up traditional "bar food," but with a "vegan twist." The burgers, "chicken," pulled "pork," even the queso on the nachos is plant-based. Nothing is made with animal-sourced products of any kind: no meat, seafood, eggs or dairy. The concept is to try and bridge the gap, make plant-based food accessible and attractive to more traditional meat-eaters.
We ask Ben Cutler of XR BBQ and Morrell Presley of Morrell's BBQ in Hingham to test the theory. The two hungry carnivores hunker down for Impossible burgers, "chicken" wings, BBQ "chicken" pizza and much more. Their reviews are candid and their questions–and concerns–are genuine. McAuley and Chef Dumont talk through their objections, share their own journeys to a plant-based lifestyle. Dumont is an award-winning chef with an impressive resume. She headed the kitchen at Cultivar in Boston and Harvest in Cambridge for many years. She’s an Iron Chef and Top Chef alum and in 2014 was named Food and Wine’s hottest new Chef. She says her years of experience cooking meat, helped her hone the plant-based foods on the menu to appeal to a broader audience. McAuley also tells the back story behind Plant Pub and how a Covid pivot saved the business.
Engaging and informative
The Hingham ‘Cast delivers timely, relevant, engaging, and informative programming for the community. Whether interviewing candidates for elected office or profiling individuals, host Ally Donnelly’s thorough research and thoughtful questions make these “must listen”.
Local topics with a South Shore focus!
Ally, Love the podcast! Thank you for covering topics ultra-relevant to our town, but also broadly applicable across the South Shore...well done!
Your Town Deserves an Ally Donnelly
Ally’s work on The Hingham ‘cast is a shining model for what local and community podcasting can and should be. Ally is a bona fide professional in this art and she brings her very real humanity and heart along with her demonstrable journalistic and producing skills. I hope your town or area has a comparable resource. And even if you don’t live anywhere near Hingham, the human interest aspects, no matter from where they might originate, are always interesting and relatable.