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Leadership Academy – February's Human Services and Non-Profits Day

PLYMOUTH — Leadership Academy, February's Human Services and Non-Profits Day, was held recently at  the Enterprise Center. It began with a panel discussion about the challenges facing local Human Services non-profit organization providers.

Cathy Bentwood of Plymouth's Pemi-Bridge House and a representative of Voices Against Violence (VAV) described and discussed their respective programs. The Pemi-Bridge House provides housing opportunities for homeless persons and families in our region. A current challenge is the acquisition of additional property to provide more support and housing in the Plymouth/Ashland/Holderness area for homeless military veterans. Voices Against Violence provides shelter to domestic violence victims that are in eminent danger. Victims also receive personal services in the form of support, encouragement, and empowerment. For VAV, funding the program is complex with numerous grants they receive from the towns within its service area. Other funding comes from fund raisers, such as the "Winter Ball".
The afternoon began with a panel discussion about the challenges facing Family Services and Care NPOs that focus on local youth. Jessica Dutille of Plymouth's Pemi Youth Center and Joy Nolan of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) described and discussed their respective programs. The Pemi Youth Center is a place for all students to enjoy after school. As with most non-profit organizations, funding has been the challenge, but thanks to fund raisers and their partnership with Plymouth State University and other organizations, the Youth Center's future is secure. According to Ms. Nolan, a major challenge for CASA is to find volunteers that are willing to support affected youth through the 22-month legal process.
The day ended with a panel discussion about other local community services. Moe Lafrieniere of First Star Tonight and Leslie Dion of Bristol's Tapply Thompson Community Center described and discussed their respective programs. FST's mission is to provide support to families with critically or terminally ill children. Since its creation the program has helped over 500 children; currently the program is helping over 20 families. The majority of the program's funding comes from the yearly fundraiser dinner it holds at Fosters Steakhouse in Plymouth.

The Tapply Thompson Community Center is responsible for the Center's operations and maintenance. Ms. Dion explained that the organization also operates and maintains recreation and parks programs for eight towns in the Newfound area. She oversees the yearly "Santa's Village" program at the Center that brings the Holiday spirit to hundreds of local youth. In summer, she oversees the "Westward Bound" program which sends twelve local youth to National Parks in the Western United States. Funding for these programs comes from the eight towns along with fund raisers such as the NH Marathon.

Next month's Leadership Academy day focuses on Criminal Justice.
The purpose of the Leadership Academy Program is to cultivate civic awareness and engagement among existing and emerging leaders within the region. Program participants are exposed to the many challenges and opportunities facing the region, and are encouraged to engage in those where they can exercise their passion and expertise toward improving the community.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 February 2014 09:58

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Come to Prescott Farm on Saturdays during the month of March and enjoy Maple Sugar Madness

 LACONIA — For over 13 years Prescott Farm has been offering their Maple Sugar Madness programs to school groups and the public during the month of March.On Saturdays, March 1-29 the public is invited to come and take part in this 1.5 hour program. Available program times include; 10-11:30 a.m., 12 noon-1:30 p.m. and 2-3:30 p.m. All that attend will get to experience an old-fashioned New England tradition – making maple syrup.

From tapping a tree to tasting delicious maple syrup, guests will have hands-on participation in every step of the syrup making process. The center's environmental educators will help build tree ID skills and teach guests about the parts of a tree and their functions, use measuring tools to find an appropriate tree to tap, use historical and modern tree tapping tools, teach the history of maple sugaring including Native American legends, and reveal the math and chemical/physical science in the boiling process.

The program also involves a 20 minute walk to our Sugar House. Guests should wear boots and dress appropriately for the weather. Snowshoes will be provided as needed.

Prescott Farm is a non-profit organization that offers environmental education for all ages throughout the year including WildQuest camps, public programs, field trips, and long-term partnerships with local elementary schools.

The 160 acre historic family farm features woodland and field trails, a "green" building with geothermal and solar energy systems, historic barns, an old-fashioned maple sugaring operation (during the month of March), heritage gardens, and forested pond. Prescott Farm is open year round, seven days a week from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. It is free to come and go for a hike or explore the "green" building!

Reservations are required for Maple Madness. Cost is $5/adult; $4/child age 4-12 for members of Prescott Farm and $8/adult; $7/child age 4-12 for non-members. Ages 3 and under are free. Reserve a spot by calling 603-366-5695 or sending an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Also, visit www.prescottfarm.org to learn more about Maple Sugar Madness.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 February 2014 11:31

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Adult Ed offers six week Watercolor Class

LACONIA — Laconia Adult Education is offering a Water Color Painting Studio Class, taught by Mary Lou John, beginning on Monday, March 10. The class will meet from 6–8:30 p.m. for (6) six weeks. This class is open to students at all levels of water color painting. No previous water color painting experience is required.

The class will examine the fundamentals of watercolor painting, including basic approaches to color and value. Through a series of landscapes and other subjects of participants' choosing, they will develop a sensitivity to the medium, and begin to understand how to use watercolor to achieve the best results.

Students attending the first night of class should bring any water color painting supplies that they might have. Those who have never taken this type of a class will learn from the instructor on the first night of the class what supplies are required.

To enroll in this class or for more information, call the Laconia Adult Education Office at 603-524-5712.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 February 2014 11:22

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American Legion Celebrates 95 Years of Service

LACONIA — American Legion Post 1 located at 849 North Main St. in Laconia, will celebrate 95 years of service to the community and its veterans and its youth with a dinner and awards night on Saturday March 8.

Originally names for Frank W. Wilkins, the first Laconia boy killed in World War I, the post was chartered by Congress in March of 1919. Although Wilkins was over the age to be drafted he left New England Telephone Company and joined the U.S.Army as a master signal electrician in Co. D 401st Telegraph Bn. He died in France of injuries received when he crashed his motorcycle while trying to avoid hitting a little girl.
The name was changed in 1946 to include that of Lt. Cmdr. James Stuart Smith, U.S.Navy, who was the first service man from Laconia to be killed during WWII. From 1930 until 1953, the post home was located at 329 Union Ave. The property was sold to the First National Corp, and later to Mr. Grocer. The property is currently shared between the high school vocational center and Auto Zone.
The current Post home was built in 1953 and has since undergone several changes.
In celebration of this milestone, the post will host a complete prime rib dinner to members and their guests. Also certificated of continuous membership will be awarded to those with 50-55-60 years of membership. Ticket information is available by calling the canteen after 12 p.m. at 524-9728 with a deadline of March 4.

Last Updated on Monday, 24 February 2014 11:08

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