Madison Town Column: Wildlife center looking for volunteers

By Cathie Gregg
Well, it happened again. Another summer is nearing its end. Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Madison Old Home week have come and gone, and we are looking at Labor Day Weekend and the start of school. Where does the time go?
At Elaine Conners Center for Wildlife, we have seen and released hundreds of baby birds, including crows, ravens, songbirds, ducks, Canada geese, herons and more. And mammals are still coming in with their second litters. This year the center is taking names of people now through early spring who are interested in volunteering in 2016 so that training can begin prior to next baby season. All we ask is that you be over 18 and commit to one shift per week. Interested? Give the center a call!
A note from the Madison Town Hall that the clerk's office will be closing at noon on Sept. 8 for training. Please mark your calendar.
Madison Recreation is coming off a very strong and full summer of activities, with numbers of participants at its highest in four years. During the summer, participants played kick ball, soccer, football and wiffle ball. They played card games, made creative videos and used their imaginations with arts and crafts. They traveled to local area attractions such as Whale's Tale, Cranmore Adventure Park, Lost River and Fun Town. Twice each week they traveled to White Lake State Park where they swam in the lake, played in the play area and created enormous structures in the sand.
Now it's time for the fall season to begin and Madison Recreation sports and after-school activities. Madison Recreation is your source for Madison soccer. This year, soccer will be divided into four grade groupings: 5-6, 3-4, 1-2 and even kindergarten soccer. The after-school program will also include, back by popular demand, karate, offered by Kwoon Karate. Several special events are scheduled that will light up your life. Watch for the ever popular fall festival, when Madison Recreation teams up with the wonderful Madison Garden Club to offer a spectacle of haunting carved-out pumpkins along with story telling and dinner. For additional information on any of these activities, email Rec Director Mike Lane at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or call him at (603) 367-4642 Ext. 136.
The book group at the Madison Library meets monthly on the fourth Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. The books vary, sometimes mysteries and sometimes travel, but are never boring. All are welcome whether or not you have read the book. Refreshments are served and you can borrow your book a month in advance. Upcoming discussions include the Sept. 27 discussion "Americanah"; Oct. 25, which is the One Book One Valley selection, "The Finest Hours"; and November's group will discuss "Mercy Snow" on Nov. 22.
Madison Old Home Week was "iffy" this year with some days so hot you couldn't stand to be outside and other times, such as the parade, which was held in torrential downpours. Congratulations to all who participated in Old Home Week, and special thank yous to the committee that works tirelessly to make this one week a success. More on Old Home Week in the next column.
Do you have summer news? Plans for Labor Day? If you would like to see your news in the column, please e-mail me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. In the meantime, please remember our veterans.
I know it is early, but this year Elaine Conners Center for Wildlife is doing a fundraiser in the next newsletter called "Light a Candle for Wildlife." All windows at both the Elaine Conners Center for Wildlife and Butler Education Center have year-round candles. Blue is to honor and remember police and firefighters, green for our veterans and all other windows are for your choosing to remember a loved one, a beloved pet, or as a Christmas gift for someone. More in our newsletter. Please remember our wildlife windows and stay tuned for our open house when you will see them all shine at once.
Cathie Gregg can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Effingham Town Column: A day of fun and history at Street Fair

By Henry Spencer
Saturday, what to do? Hey, that's right — the Effingham Preservation Society is doing its big Street Fair down at the old Grange Hall. As near as those who care can figure it out, the Grange Hall building is celebrating its 200th birthday. Whether this Saturday is the absolute precise calendar perfect day could be brought into question if one cared, but after 200 years what's a week or two one way or the other? The big thing here is the celebration. Pie baking contest, pie eating contests, historical tours of the area including the church and the Masonic Hall murals, and some facts and history about the private homes in the area. Unfortunately, the historical society's building will not be open to the public as it is currently having its own time on face lift and refurbishment.
It seems that these days the energy required for young folks to have fun always seems to come from either a wall socket or batteries and, in some of your more obnoxious noisy pastimes, fossil fuels. In celebration of the old ways of doing things, the society will be hosting a field full of the way fun used to be had, the energy coming from eating proteins, starches and sugars. In other words, a whole lot of running around between battledore and shuttlecock, ring toss, whirligigs, top spinning, outdoor Jenga (the Colonial version?), croquet and something called Wooden Bowl. There will also be things to make for the crafty hand. be things to make too for the crafty hand. The energy provided by locally produced baked goods, breads and birthday cake. Just bring a smile ready face, an inquisitive mind and expectation of having some fun. The operative word here is Street Fair. The lower end of Town House Road will be closed to traffic from 8:30 a.m. until around 2 p.m.

Tamworth Town Column: Red Sox tickets, Washburn guitar and more up for grabs at annual auction

By Ann McGarity
The Barnstormers Theatre holds its Grand Annual Auction on Sunday under the tent behind The Other Store in in Tamworth Village. Beginning at 5 p.m., the event features an open bar, hors d'oeuvres, silent and live auctions, presided over by everyone's favorite emcee, George Cleveland. Items on the block include Red Sox tickets, travel opportunities and a limited edition Washburn guitar. Special items this year are a mosaic of a New Hampshire garden, especially created for this auction, and original art work by David McPhail, author/illustrator of the "Pig-Pig" books, of the famous character flying over Tamworth. There is more artwork, craft items, collectibles, ephemera, gift certificates and marquee posters. Tickets are $35 per person and are available at the box office, (603) 323-8500, or online at
The final 2016 Barnstormers' production opened on Thursday, Aug. 25, closing Saturday Sept. 3. "You Can't Take It With You" is about the Sycamores, an eccentric family with several odd pursuits: writing melodramas, keeping snakes, and making fireworks in the basement. They also have an eclectic collection of friends. When Alice Sycamore falls in love with Tony Kirby, his stuffy parents come for dinner, and two worlds collide. This Pulitzer Prize winner written by one of the great comedy teams of the 20th century is enduring, endearing and hilarious. I can tell you that this was one of the most laughter-provoking productions I have ever seen.

Albany Town Column: Selectman reports on bridge inspections

By Mary Leavitt and Dorothy Solomon
The selectmen met on Wednesday for their regular session. They will not be meeting next week as it is the fifth Wednesday of the month.
Selectman Rick Hiland reported the N.H. Department of Transportation has inspected five town bridges, finding two red listed bridges. Three were inspected in August 2015: one on Drake Hill South, one on Ferncroft Road and one on Passaconaway Road. Two bridges were inspected in October 2015: one on Drake Hill North and the Albany Covered Bridge.
Kathy Vizard reported the assessor has completed his work, and the results should be ready by Labor Day. She also told the selectmen that the town would use $200,000 in tax anticipated notes to pay bills. Additionally, she reported that at this point 10 packets of sealed bids have been issued for the Eastman property.

Dorothy Solomon and Mary Leavitt: Albany Town Column for Aug 13, 2016

The selectmen met on Wednesday and dealt with several issues. Selectman Rick Hiland noted that members of several boards are interested in attending a workshop on the Right To Know law. It was suggested that Kathy Vizard contact other select boards around the area to see if they too have people interested in such a workshop. Perhaps this might mitigate the costs associated with this workshop.

Norman Tragenza, candidate for District 7 representative, came before the selectmen to advise them of his run and what he felt most adamant about. One of his ideas was to reduce the number of state regulations. He asked what the selectmen were interested in and left his telephone number should the selectmen have any special needs.

He was followed by a visit from Curtis Coleman discussing the red listed bridges and town roads. Though the bridges could not immediately be completely fixed, they could be posted to avoid problems. Additionally, Hiland suggested that the town apply to the state for aid in making the needed improvements of these bridges. The state will pay 80 percent of the costs if approved. Curtis also spoke of road repairs. More funds are needed for this, which will be brought up at the next town meeting. Additionally Coleman discussed with selectmen the possibility of bonding for these roads.

Hiland reported that the planning board has approved the work to be done at World Fellowship. Cathy Ryan attended a Cemetery Committee Meeting where there was discussion regarding modernization of the properties.

Steve Knox questioned the selectmen about the road worthiness of motor homes in the town. They will look into this.

The town is accepting bids on the sale of property located on West Main Street Extension. All bids must be received by Sept. 5 at noon. Bids will be opened Sept. 7 at 4:15 p.m. and read aloud at that meeting. This is a tax sale and is being sold without a warranted deed or condition of property. The successful bidder will receive a quit claim deed. A bid packet may be picked up at the Albany Selectmen's Office.

Remember that Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day is Sept. 17, from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., at the Conway Transfer Station. There is a strict 10-gallon limit per household. Contractors can make arraignments prior to this event.
Check the door at town hall for ballot samples of the upcoming (Sept. 13) Primary. All of the candidates for each party are noted.

World Fellowship: On Sunday, Aug. 14 at 10 a.m. Christine DeTroy who grew up in Hitler's Germany will speak about "Remembering: Years of Hiding Behind Silence." On Monday, Aug. 15 at 7:30 p.m. Tammy Shapiro will talk about "How Decentralized, Smart Movement Networks Can Help Us Build the Future." On Tuesday, Aug. 16, at 7:30 p.m. join the discussion about post-disaster climate justice organizing.

Gibson Center: Call (356-3231) to sign up for the Tuesday, Aug. 16, trip to Old Orchard Beach to see the "Downeasters" a barbershop group. The bus leaves the Center at 2:30 p.m. and/or on Aug. 17 take the bus to the coast for a Portland Sunset Lighthouse Cruise. Meet at the center at 2 p.m.

Library: Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. it's Story Time for Twos and Wednesday it's Story Time for Wee Ones. At 6 p.m. the Teen Writers Group meets. On Thursday at 10:30 a.m. it's Story Time for Threes and Fours. At 4 p.m. the Family Garden Club meets.

Congratulations to Emily Mathieu named to the dean's list at Keene State College.

The USFS is offering lessons for skating groups in basic skills, free skating skills, hockey skills, etc. Sign up is being held now through Aug. 30. Call 739-5467 for more information.

On Aug. 13 the fourth annual Mountainside Summer Music Festival at Attitash offers free entertainment from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. near the Base Lodge. Bring your own chair.

We are officially in a heat wave. Drink lots of water, and enjoy the warmth while it's here. Have a great week!