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Living Nativity at Gilford Methodist Church on Sun.

GILFORD — The First United Methodist Church of Gilford will hold a Living Nativity on Sunday, Dec. 14, at noon following their regular service.

The public is invited to participate in this traditional Nativity, with story and song. The Holy Family will be portrayed by Drew and Shayna Lacroix and their son, Mason. Also taking part will be head shepherd Jeff Keyser with sheep from Ramblin' Vewe Farm in Gilford. Weather permitting, Kathy Salanitro will participate with one of her oxen, and Eeyore the Donkey, owned by Jeff and Joyce Keyser, is scheduled to be here as well.

Pastor Tom Getchell-Lacey will narrate the Christmas story as an intergenerational group of people play out the scenes of the Christ Child's birth.

Following the program, cider and cookies will be served in the church's Fellowship Hall.

Last year was the first time the Live Nativity was held in front of the Methodist Church. In previous years it was held in Gilford Village, but was moved to the church because of the greater availability of parking.

The tradition of the Living Nativity was started many years ago by the Rev. Ray Wixson and was done in conjunction with Gilford Community Church and the Gilford Historical Society.

The church is located at 18 Wesley Way (off Route 11A) in Gilford. If anyone has any questions, please call the church on weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and noon and speak to Joyce.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 09:12

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Waterville Valley’s annual ‘Cookies and Santa’ event is Sat.

WATERVILLE VALLEY — On Saturday, December 13, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., merrymaking will ensue at Waterville Valley's annual 'Cookies and Santa' event.

To kick off the day of festivities, guests can create their own candy cottage at the Waterville Valley Recreation Department from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Small cottages cost $12 and large cottages cost $18. The price includes all of the candy decorations. Registration ends on December 10. Call 603-236-4695 to order a cottage.

Ice Skating and Sleighrides are also available throughout the day. Ice Skating is in Waterville's Indoor Ice Arena located in the town center from, 2:45-2 p.m. and 6:45-8 p.m and costs $5 for admission and $5 for skate rental. Sleigh ride tours last 30 minutes. Between 1 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Saturday, two Belgium draft horses pull a Austrian sled around Waterville Valley. A seat costs $18 for adults, $12 for chilren 2-12, and free for children under the age of two.

From 3–4 p.m. there will be a Curious George Story Time at the Rey Center, located in the Town Square. There will be beanbags to lounge in as parents and little ones gather to listen to their favorite books read aloud.

From 3-5 p.m. Santa Clause will be walking around the Town Square taking requests for gifts and pictures. Visitors can also snack on complimentary freshly baked cookies. For lunch and dinner, the village of Waterville Valley has a variety of dining options. Tucked in the White Mountains, the Town Square is festively decorated and surrounded by towering, snowcapped mountains. For more information visit www.visitwatervillevalley.com

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 09:04

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NH Impact Center at PSU helps teachers hone skills

PLYMOUTH — Dozens of New Hampshire mathematics educators are honing their classroom skills and preparing for new federal testing standards with the help of Plymouth State University's NH Impact Center. According to Director Natalya Vinogradova, the goal of the NH Impact Center is to help teachers enhance their mathematics instructional skills.

"We make sure every teacher leaves with ready-to-use activities, projects, games and experiments that they can take back to their classroom," Vinogradova said. "We want their students to find mathematics interesting and wonderful."

New Hampshire educators from every grade level attend the N.H. Impact Center's workshops and professional development institutes every year. Many of these events are free.

A December 4 workshop, "What's and How's of the Smarter Balanced Assessment," drew an overflow crowd to PSU; it was the fifth workshop of this kind arranged by the Impact Center. The "Smarter Balanced" math assessment is required by law; it is critical because the results are supposed to reflect how students are progressing toward statewide expectations for what students in grades three through eight and grade 11 should know.

"In the past, students would come out of high school and attempt to be ready for college, but some had what we call a 'remedial gap' between what they learned in high school and what is required for college," said Scott Mantie of New Hampshire's Department of Education. "Smarter Balanced Assessment changes how we measure whether students are ready for college or a career."

"Offering a seminar like this is invaluable," said Jim George '76, of Campton Elementary School. "I'm getting information on Smarter Balanced Assessment, which I will share with our staff. That leads to our students having a better chance at success, not only on the assessment, but what they do with the knowledge after they leave our school."

Stefanie Miller of Plymouth Regional High School agreed, saying she attended because she wants to get new ideas on preparing her 11th and 12th grade students for the assessment, which occurs next spring.

"I want to give them information like the material they'll be tested on and what they'll be asked to do," Miller said.

The New Hampshire Impact Center at Plymouth State University was created in 1999 through a grant from the Center for the Enhancement of Science and Mathematics Education (CESAME) at Northeastern University. The Center's main objective is to improve mathematics education by working closely with school districts and teachers to enhance teachers' content and pedagogical knowledge. The NH Impact Center provides meaningful professional development on a variety of topics for various grade levels.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 08:46

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Gilford Methodist Church plans free Christmas dinner

GILFORD — An annual tradition in the Lakes Regions will continue this Christmas Day at the First United Methodist Church in Gilford. Every year for the last 18 years the church congregation and many community friends have served a hot holiday meal for those people in the local area that might be alone or in need. The tradition started with one family, The Keysar's of Laconia, who felt the holiday had lost some meaning to their family. The Keysar's wanted to give something to their neighbors and working with the church, were able to organize the first annual Free Christmas Dinner.
The day begins at noon with a fellowship hour or carols, goodies and merriment. At 1 p.m. the dining room doors open to a ham dinner with all the trimmings. Candied carrots, potatoes, rolls, and homemade pies are just part of the meal prepared by the 40 plus volunteers who work on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to get the dinner on the tables. Many local families come to work and others help with monetary donations.
All are welcome at this meal regardless of faith or need and seats are still available for this year's feast. Reservations are necessary so that the cooks can plan and purchase ample food for all. They may be made by contacting dinner chair, Jessica Keysar Alward at 520-3910 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Those looking to help out with the event can also contact the Alward family to volunteer. Help is needed for three shifts. Dec. 24th at 2 pm for set up and prep. Dec. 25th at 12:30 to serve and finally at 1:30 on the Christmas Day for cleanup.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 08:40

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