POPULAR “TIP’’: Since he began publishing the quarterly magazine “Growing Up in North Cambridge: A Journal of Stories of Years Gone By” in 2006, Stephen Surette of Arlington has attracted subscribers from 34 states and six countries. But perhaps no other issue has garnered as much attention as the current edition, dedicated to “Our Tip O’Neill.”
Born on Dec. 9, 1912, North Cambridge native Thomas Phillip O’Neill Jr. was speaker of both the Massachusetts House of Representatives and the US House of Representatives. Considered one of the most influential leaders in 20th-century American politics, he died on Jan. 5, 1994.
While his political accomplishments are widely known, more than 30 stories in the magazine provide insight into Tip O’Neill’s colorful character and soft spot for his hometown. Sarah Boyer, an oral historian for the Cambridge Historical Commission, writes of his welcoming and generous manner during their first interview, in 1992. Mary Gould Wright of Woburn credits him with helping her father, Daniel Gould, ind a job that he kept until his retirement.
Michael Veno of Lakewood Ranch, Fla., recalls how O’Neill cut through bureaucratic red tape so his family could receive a federal grant toward medical costs resulting from his brother’s polio. Three contributors — Kate Williams of Seymour, Conn., Robin Gamache Kusnick of Tyngsborough, and Joseph Blanchet of Stoneham — all fondly recall the Hoodsie Cups that O’Neill and his wife, Millie, gave out at Halloween.
As part of a series of Tip O’Neill centennial celebrations, Surette will join former mayor David Maher and members of the O’Neill family in hosting a community story trade on Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. at Cambridge Public Library. An official portrait of Tip will be unveiled and put on permanent display at Cambridge City Hall.
“Tip touched the lives of so many people, at home in Cambridge and through his career” in public service, said Surette, who taught at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School for 36 years until his retirement in 2004. “This is a collection of pure nostalgia. I wish Tip were here to enjoy it.”
“Growing Up in North Cambridge” is available for $10 through the Cambridge Historical Commission, Cambridge Historical Society, and other sites in Cambridge and Arlington. Back issues are available for $15. For more information, visit www.growingupinnorthcambridge.com.
NEIGHBORLY TALKS: Local residents with backgrounds in arts and entertainment, journalism, literature, business, education, science and medicine, and sports will participate in “Newton Inspires — An Evening of Ideas and Community” on Wednesday. Sponsored by the Newton Schools Foundation, the second annual discussion program will take place from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at Newton South High School, 140 Brandeis Road in Newton Centre.
Audience members will attend three 30-minute sessions, choosing from an array of speakers and topics, and then all of the participants will gather at the end of the evening for coffee and dessert.
The speakers include Waltham resident Danielle Wells, a top admissions official at Boston College, and Brook-line residents David Fleishman, superintendent of the Newton public schools, and Jothy Rosenberg, an extreme athlete, author, speaker, and computer scientist.
Newton residents taking part in the event include National Public Radio host Tom Ashbrook; Boston Globe film critic Ty Burr; novelist Anita Diamant; author William Landay; Mount Ida College president Barry Brown; sports nutritionist and author Nancy Clark; singer and songwriter Catie Curtis; Dr. Pierre d’Hemecourt, director of primary care sports medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital; Erin Delaney, producer of “Masterpiece” on WGBH-TV; astrophysicist Giovanni Fazio; entrepreneur Cynthia Fisher; NBC-TV Olympic researcher Andy Gluck; Jennifer Goldstein, senior conservation associate at the New England Aquarium; author Charles Pierce; and photographer and author Peter Vanderwarker.
Julie Sall, copresident of the Newton Schools Foundation, said the event is a way to give back to the community.
“We feel so fortunate to have so many amazing people in Newton coming together for this very special evening,” she said.
The event is free, but registration is recommended; sign up online at www.newtonschoolsfoundation.org.
FOCUS ON BULLYING: The Sudbury-Wayland-Lincoln Domestic Violence Roundtable will host three local speakers in “Bullying in Our Schools, Our Communities, and on Social Media and Our High Schools’ Response” at 3 p.m. Tuesday in the Wayland Public Safety Building, 38 Cochituate Road. Continued...