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PSU holds its annual Lavender Graduation

PLYMOUTH — Plymouth State University (PSU) students, faculty and staff, along with members of the Plymouth community, gathered at the Savage Welcome Center on Tuesday, May 5 for Lavender Graduation, an annual celebration honoring the achievements and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) graduating seniors, graduate students and allies.

Introduced at the University of Michigan in 1995, Lavender Graduation is now held at hundreds of colleges and universities across the country. PSU's Lavender Graduation debuted in 2010; since then, it has been a fixture among the many campus activities and celebrations leading up to commencement.

"The ceremony provides a positive final experience for LGBTQ students and allies before they graduate," said Kyle O'Neill, interim director of PSU's Sexuality Anti-Violence Gender Equality (SAGE) Center, a student-focused resource center that provides support, advocacy and educational programming relating to sexual orientation, gender, gender identity and violence prevention. "It also reaffirms to our LGBTQ students, and the rest of campus, that we value them."

President Sara Jayne Steen gave the opening remarks and presented each graduate with a rainbow cord to wear at Commencement. "When we say that we strive to create an inclusive, welcoming and accepting environment at PSU, we mean it," she said. "Our students, faculty, staff and alumni are role models, and we are proud of you."

Awards were also given to honor those students and community members who have shown exemplary leadership at PSU and in the community.

The Carol Perkins Community Action Award, named for Carol Perkins, owner of Longview Farm in Plymouth and treasurer for Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG)-N.H., was given to the Reverend Paolo França, pastor of the Plymouth Congregational United Church of Christ, for being a visible role model for LGBTQ youth and for standing up for justice for the LGBTQ community.

The Outstanding Campus Ally Award was given to Deborah Grotheer of Plymouth, in recognition of her active and consistent support of LGBTQ students. Shaun Connors of Lowell, Mass., received the John K. Walsh Scholarship, which is awarded to a student who has advocated for LGBTQ rights.

Delilah Smith, former director of the SAGE Center, returned to her alma mater as the keynote speaker, and closed with a few words of advice for the graduates as they begin their lives outside of PSU. "Seek out people who accept you for who you are, be persistent—view hurdles as challenges that make you stronger, take pride in yourself and most importantly, have fun out there!"

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 May 2015 07:21

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Pitman's Freight Room hosts three comics on May 16

LACONIA — The monthly comedy series which has become a fan favorite at Pitman's Freight Room in Laconia, returns Saturday, May 16 at 8 p.m. with a triple headliner event starring Mike Donovan, Bill Campbell and Ryan Gartley. Both Donovan and Campbell will be making their first appearances at Pitman's.

Last month's show drew 220 people to Pitman's which has become a comedy "must" for both New England comedians as well as comedy fans. It is recommended that those wishing to attend the May 16 show arrive early to ensure seating. The May show begins at 8 p.m. prior to the summer schedule which has the June, July, and August shows beginning at 9 p.m.

Donovan is a regular headliner in Las Vegas and Atlantic City as well as having been seen on Comedy Central and Showtime, Fox, Comcast Comedy, NESN Comedy All Stars, and more. Campbell is a long time headliner who appears in Las Vegas and has been seen on A&E Evening at the Improv, Comedy Central and has performed at the top clubs around the country. Gartley is a New England favorite who has performed across the United States at the best clubs in the business including rooms in Las Vegas, New York, and stops in between.

"The comedy shows continue to be our biggest draws," said Pitman's owner Dick Mitchell. "There have been some shows where we have had to bring in additional seating. We are thrilled the people of the area have responded to the shows the way they have."

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 May 2015 07:14

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Living Well workshops to help those living with chronic condition

FRANKLIN — A weekly workshop entitled Living Well will be held at the Franklin VNA for those suffering from a chronic health concern to learn ways to manage symptoms. The workshop, sponsored by LRGHealthcare, will be offered on Tuesdays from 1 to 3 p.m., May 19 to June 23,at Franklin Regional Hospital.

Those attending the workshops will apply skills for living a full, healthy life with a chronic condition, learn to set weekly goals and develop a practical step-by-step plan for improving health and quality of life. Weekly topics include healthy eating, physical activity, relieving stress, pain and fatigue management, and more.

Workshop leaders will guide participants through this proven program developed by the Stanford University School of Medicine. These sessions are ideal for anyone living with a chronic health condition or a caregiver of someone with a chronic health condition.

For more information or to register for this upcoming workshops, call LRGHealthcare Education Services at 527-7120.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 May 2015 06:58

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Sant Bani to offer an energy oriented open house

SANBORNTON — Sant Bani School is hosting a free Community Open House on Sunday, May 17, from 1-2:30 p.m.

Families can participate hands-on activities around the theme of energy. Led by experienced and dynamic Sant Bani teachers, families will get to build and take home a solar car, brew "worm tea" for their garden, make and eat ice cream, explore a vernal pool and more.  The Open House will highlight Sant Bani School's theme-based approach to teaching STEAMS (science, technology, engineering, arts, math, service).

This event is free. To RSVP call 934-4240 or emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 May 2015 06:53

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