Tamworth Town Column: Chocorua readies for its big day

By Ann McGarity
This weekend will be remembered for decades because of Chocorua Day on Saturday morning, and events in the afternoon marking the 250th anniversary of Tamworth.
First, today, attend the regional summer art show reception at Runnell's Hall, Chocorua, from 6 to 8 p.m. The Arts Council of Tamworth hosts the show, featuring local artists and craftspeople. Meet the artists, visit with neighbors, and enjoy the beautiful work on display. Everyone is invited. The show continues on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
The annual Chocorua Day Festival begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday with the Chocorua Library Book Sale and the Indoor Yard Sale at the Chocorua Community Church. Go to the front of the library at 10.30 a.m. to hear Marion Posner's colorful tales of Tamworth. Eat a BBQ lunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and be entertained by the Dixieland Dandies performing traditional jazz and favorite sing-a-long tunes, and munch on popcorn served by Boy Scout Troop 151. Take a tour of the new Chocorua Park, or a walk featuring the poem "A Tamworth Meditation", by Richard Posner. Tamworth fire, police and EMT vehicles and personnel will be on hand for safety and information. The Chocorua Community Association's president will present the Citizen of the Year Award at 1 p.m.
The Chocorua Day Festival is located on the grounds of Runnell's Hall and in front of the Chocorua Public Library on Route 113 East at Route 16.

Effingham Town Column: Get your free ice cream

By Henry Splencer

As headlines go this one is probably going to get more attention than any other ever used in this column. And, it's true too. Our fre and rescue department will be holding an ice cream social on Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m at the big fire station, Station 2, in Center Effingham. Members of the department will be on hand to answer questions about all of the department's apparatus. The ice cream will be provided by Bobby Sue's and is, as stated, free. Donations will be accepted, appreciated and acknowledged. Once consumed and with fingers cleaned off, you can inspect the new equipment and ask questions. Here's a hint: Ask about how many pumps are on each truck and how the water flows through those pumps from one truck to another and out the end of the hose. Warning: The answer to this question is going to take a while; we are not talking garden hoses here. Our department has some pretty dedicated volunteers and a slowly increasing roster of newly trained EMTs and firemen, all responsible for not just safety and such but also for the upkeep of well over a million dollars' worth of equipment. And free ice cream.

Library Connection: Friends of the Conway Public Library to offer monthly raffle baskets

The Friends of the Conway Public Library have enjoyed providing raffle prize opportunities to everybody that ventures through the doors of the library. Now, the Friends will be putting out a new themed raffle basket each month! It's a wonderful way to provide a little fun and benefit the library community at the same time. Tickets are $1 each or six tickets for $5. The first winners will be announced Wednesday, September 21 at the Annual Meeting of the Friends. All are invited to attend.

The Friends would like to announce that they are looking for a new secretary for their board. If you are looking for a way to give back to your local library community and you think you may be a good fit, please call Betty at 447-5552 to find out more.

Summer reading program highlights
There are only a couple of weeks left of the summer reading program at the library and there are two events left to help celebrate!

On Wednesday, Aug. 3, all kids and their caregivers are invited to the Saco Valley Gymnastics Center on the East Conway Road for an obstacle course challenge at 4:30 p.m. To find out more, call (603) 733-5503.

Wednesday, Aug. 10, is the grande finale not to be missed. Popular children's musician, Steve Blunt will be performing for families at 4 p.m. in the Ham Room.

For more information call (603) 447-5552, visit the Conway Public Library website at www.conwaypubliclibrary.org, "like" the library on Facebook or stop in at 15 Greenwood Avenue in Conway.


Jackson Town Column: Exhibition of Hudson River Fellows at Whitney Center July 28

There will be an exhibition in the Whitney Center on Thursday, July 28 at 7 p.m. of the paintings created by the artists participating in the Hudson River Fellowship. These artists from around the country, Switzerland and Sweden were chosen by the Grand Central Academy of Art in New Your City. They have spent three weeks living in Jackson and painting en plein air. The Jackson Historical Society administers the program. Some works will be on sale. The exhibition is free and open to the public.

Learn to needle felt a bear with Theresa Beckett on Thursday, July 28, from 10 a.m. to noon at the Whitney Center in Jackson. Jackson is known for its Jackson 5 family of bears. Needle felting uses special needles to form wool rovings (wool that hasn't been spun into yarn) into designs and three dimensional shapes. You will be able to take your creation home with you at the end of class. This program is family friendly with children ages 9 and above. There is a $10 materials fee. Reservations are necessary. Call (603) 986-4604 for reservations.

The Mountain Garden Club offered a memorial dedication to Larry Siebert, the creator of the magical and mystical landmark known throughout the Mount Washington Valley as Ravenwood, on June 25. A floral tribute created to honor Larry's memory was sponsored by the club in gratitude for the years of enthusiastic support for Art in Bloom by Siebert and his wife, Debbie. The interpretative arrangement by Carol White, who is one of the founders of the Art in Bloom event, was designed appropriately to focus on the massive gong to the left of the shop entrance which evokes a memory of John Donne's famous lines: "And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.''

Siebert's gentle spirit lives on in this fanciful place. As you explore the incredible garden and then step into the shop so rich with whimsical displays, realize that thousands of visitors have also gazed in wonder at this landmark so brilliantly conceived and constructed by a man who was a friend to gardeners and a benefactor of many local artists. Siebert brought beauty and joy to the entire village of Jackson during the past 15 years. He was instrumental in the beautification of this town while he served as a member of the Conservation Commission.

He worked with the Jackson Historical Society and Garden club members to create the memorial path in front of the Jackson Town Office in 2003. The Mountain Garden Club now maintains it and is especially grateful for Siebert's efforts to have an irrigation system installed for this Heritage Path which honors the 100 families who lived here in 1876 when the "Honeymoon" covered bridge was built. Take the time to visit (or revisit) the handiwork of this landmark that was a labor of love and a dream realized for Larry and Debbie Siebert. Know that every rock, every board, every shingle was placed with his own hands. Surely this is Siebert's own tribute and lasting legacy. Larry, your soaring creativity lives on in the Ravenwood Curio Shoppe.

From the northeast corner of rural Texas, award winning songwriters Lynn Adler and Lindy Hearne will perform at a private home in Jackson on Friday, July 29, at 7:30 p.m. This talented husband and wife duo, self-proclaimed "organic song farmers: are touring in New England, serving up seasoned original songs mixed with fresh harvests of homegrown music in a soulful genre they define simply as "folk jazz." Take a peek at their website at www.adlerandhearne.com, read their bios and listen to their beautifully blended voices.

The performance benefits local non-profit community music school, Mountain Top Music Center and is open to the public. Tickets are $35 and may be purchased at mountaintopmusic.org or by calling Mountain Top at (603) 447-4737. Directions to the home on the banks of the Wildcat River in Jackson will be provided as part of the ticketing process. Seating is limited to 50 guests for this intimate concert. Join us for a special evening of entertainment, refreshments and an opportunity to meet the talented musicians after their performance.

Hot off the press from the Jackson Historical Society: The formal opening of the next exhibition in our museum is scheduled for Oct. 14. The show is "The Jackson Five," featuring works of Frank Shapleigh, Mabel Williams, David Baker, Lauren Sansaricq and Erik Koeppel. The show has 54 paintings on loan from 17 Society members.

In the interest of having viewing in the museum available for our summer visitors, these members kindly agreed to make their pictures available ahead of time. All but 3 of the paintings are hung and ready for your enjoyment. In addition, we have on display a recent acquisition of a large painting of Mt Chocorua by William Boardman (1815-1895).

The scene is identical to a John Kensett (1816-1872), but viewed from a different angle. The Kensett is from Fryeburg. In comparing the profile of the adjacent ridge lines it can be deduced that the Boardman was painted from a point just to the south, possibly Tamworth. This is clearly shown on the large topographic map of the White Mountains in the museum. This is the kind of discovery that makes the 19th century paintings more interesting and exciting.

"Ready, Set, Shooting Basics with your DSLR Camera" will be at the Whitney Community Center on Wednesday, Aug. 10, at 7 p.m.  This free photography lecture shows how to use a digital single lens reflex camera (DSLR) to produce beautiful color and incredible scenery. Donna Atkins will give an overview of four key controls on a DSLR camera to unlock the secrets of matching visual lighting and motion techniques. Feel free to bring your camera to follow along. Atkins is owner of Light Channel Photography, and has photographs hanging in galleries and museums. She is also a producer of various local cable access television programs and conducts photography workshops around the region.

On Tuesday, Aug. 9, Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Granite State College, will be hosting its fall class preview at noon at Granite State College at 53 Technology Lane (Tech Village) in Conway. Refreshments will be provided at this free event. Learn about the 28 different classes that will be offered in Conway this fall and about the other classes all over New Hampshire. For further information call (603) 513-1377 or go online to olli.granite.edu.

The Jackson Planning Board has one opening for a regular voting member, and several openings for alternate members. No special qualifications are needed, other than an interest in the Town of Jackson. Typically, meetings are once per month, on the second Thursday, from 7 to 8:30 or 9 p.m. Submit a note about your interest to the Jackson Selectmen.

Jackson is in desperate need of volunteers of all ages and ability levels to help fulfill the many functions on the fire department. Who knows? You may even get to rescue a cat out of a tree. Call 383-4090 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

The 15th annual Mount Washington Century Ride, to benefit Tin Mountain Conservation Center is Saturday, July 30. Registration is open and volunteers are also needed. The century begins at the Tin Mountain Nature Learning Center in Albany between 6 and 8 a.m. The route circumnavigates Mount Washington via the NH Scenic Byway/Presidential Range Tour that provides spectacular mountain views and tranquil, New England pastoral scenery. The ride is complete with five aid stations, support vehicles, two on-duty EMTs, and a bike repair support van. The first 325 registered riders receive a commemorative T-shirt. All riders may collect pledges to win fantastic prizes as well as to contribute to the support of Tin Mountain Conservation Center. For more information and to register, visit the Tin Mountain Conservation Center website www.tinmountain.org or call (603) 447-6991.

Cathi Belcher can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fryeburg Town Column: First Congregational Church to hold bake sale July 29

The First Congregational Church of Fryeburg will hold a bake sale on Friday, July 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in front of Weston's Farm Stand on River Street. Stop by and purchase some goodies to satisfy your sweet tooth. The bakers from the Congo Church are the best.

A food mobile, hosted by Southwest Oxford County Nutrition, Inc. and the Brownfield Food Pantry, will be parked at the Lion's Den at 701 Pequawket Trail in Brownfield on Tuesday, Aug. 2, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. (while supplies last). Anyone in need of food assistance is eligible. Bring your own bags or boxes.

Fryeburg Recreation is offering yet another wonderful community event this summer. The second annual Movie in the Ball Park takes place on Friday, Aug. 5 at 8:30 p.m. Disney's "The Jungle Book" is this summer's film to be held at Fryeburg's Field of Dreams. The snack shack will be open with refreshments to purchase. Bring along comfortable chairs or blankets and be ready to enjoy a memorable evening with the family.

The third annual Dole 3 Miler (www.dole3miler.com) takes place on Saturday, Aug. 6, at 8 a.m. on the Mountain Division Trail on Route 302. Organized by the Fryeburg New Church Assembly, a Swedenborgian Church Camp on the right bank of the Saco River, just across the road from the Fryburg Mountain Division Trailhead, this race is the namesake of the Rev. Dr. George F. Dole, theologian, lifelong runner, and a native of Fryeburg.

In organizing this race, rather than create another traditional 5K, the slightly shorter 3 miles was chosen to celebrate George's serendipitous participation in one of the most famous sporting events in world history: Roger Bannister's historic Four Minute Mile. George, who had been a strong halfmiler at Yale, was then a graduate student at Oxford University in England. He had recently won the prestigious 1-mile race for Oxford against Cambridge, earning him the invitation to participate in the now legendary May 6, 1954, 1-mile race that would be the first successful attempt by a human to run a mile in under 4 minutes.

Now 85 years old, George has hinted that the 2016 Dole 3 Miler may be his last race.

On Aug. 6, from 5 to 7 p.m., the First Congregational Church hosts a church supper to raise money for their Steeple Restoration Fund. The supper takes place at the Masonic Hall on Portland Street and offers casseroles, hot dogs, beans, salads, homemade bread and pies. The cost for adults is $10 and $5 for children under 12 years of age.

"Runners just do it — they run for the finish line even if someone else has reached it first." — Author Unknown

Robin Johnson can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..