EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Merrimack Valley

July 17, 2013

A prospering Lawrence debuts during Friday's Red Sox game


The ad opens with rolling images of some of the city’s iconic structures — the Duck Bridge, the Ayer Mill clocktower, the Prospect Hill water tower — and then shifts its focus to people and their workplaces, including Shaun Donohoe, a baker for the Fisichelli Pastry Shop for 27 years. Donohoe provides a goofy wrap-up to the advertisement when he pulls a tray of cherry-topped cookies from a brick oven and places two over his eyes.

“I grew up there, at that location,” Gaffny, 48, said of the family bakery. “It was once a thriving city. I used to see all the mill workers with their lunch boxes going to work. Lawrence hasn’t lost its foundation. It’s still a great city. It’s kind of nice to see the commercial taking place in Lawrence.”

El Taller Cafe, which opened at 275 Essex St. last spring, also gets a cameo in the ad. The cafe and bookshop is owned by Mary and Antonio Guerrero and managed by their gangly 23-year-old son, Eric. The family also own Cafe Azteca a few blocks away on Common Street.

“It shows Lawrence is working hard,” Eric Guerrero said after the lunchtime rush yesterday, when he made sandwiches while presiding over a dozen or so teenagers and 20-somethings working on computers at the counter or socializing at tables. “It shows Lawrence in a positive light, rather than negative, which happens all the time.”

Rivers, the Eastern Bank president, said the bank opened a branch at 486 Essex St. and then decided to feature Lawrence in the ad campaign because the city “fits into our mission,” which he said is to serve under-served communities. He said the bank was the first to open in downtown Lawrence in 23 years.

“When we entered two years ago, a lot of people asked, ‘What’s the catch? Why not the western suburbs?’” Rivers said. “The reason is that those communities already had service. They have banks on every corner.”

Mayor William Lantigua and Patrick Blanchette, the city’s economic development director, did not return phone calls seeking comment on the Eastern Bank ad.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Merrimack Valley

Eagle-Tribune News Videos
Photos of the Week