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Christmas Night Celebration in Ashland on Friday, December 6

ASHLAND — Christmas Night in Ashland will be celebrated this year on Friday evening, December 6, in downtown Ashland.

Several local organizations, businesses and individuals will participate in the holiday event, which is coordinated by the Community Council of Ashland. The 2013 event will include children's workshops and scavenger hunt, pictures with Santa, a model railroad display, food and other sales, hay rides, storyteller Shawn Middleton, the lighting of the town Christmas tree, and a Santa's Gift Bag Raffle to benefit the local food pantry.

Most events will take place between 5 and 6:45 p.m. on Main Street and Highland Street. Pictures with Santa are offered for a $1 donation by the Friends of the Ashland Town Library, at the Library, 41 Main Street, at the main intersection in the village. Also at the Library, the Pond and Peak Reading Council, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting literacy, will be sponsoring a storybook giveaway. Each child can choose a storybook of their liking. Next door, at the Legion Hall, the American Legion post will host a Christmas Stroll, which will include food, drink and a place to warm up.

The Meredith Village Savings Bank holds a free Christmas tree ornament workshop for children at its Ashland office, at the corner of Riverside Drive and Highland Street. Next to the bank at 12 Highland Street is the Ashland Community Center, which will have a Bread Basket Raffle and the annual Cookie Walk, with cans of cookies, mostly home made, for sale at $3 per can. (Buyers get to pick their own cookies.) The Community Center is also the site of the Santa's Gift Bag Raffle to benefit the Ashland Food Pantry. Non-perishable food items can brought to the Center between noon and 6 p.m. on Thursday, December 5 and Friday, December 6. One raffle ticket will be given for each qualifying food item donated to the Food Pantry. The raffle includes gift bags for both adults and children 12 and under. The winning tickets will be announced at the tree lighting at the end of the evening.

A Corn Chowder Supper to benefit the Food Pantry will be served in St. Mark's Parish Hall, at 16 Highland Street next to the Community Center. The supper, including chowder, crackers and beverage, costs just $3. Horse drawn hay rides, sponsored by the Community Center, will load up in the Town Hall parking lot, just beyond St. Mark's Church, at 20 Highland Street. Donations will be appreciated, but are not required for the hay rides which will be given from 5 to 8 p.m. The hay ride can be taken up Highland Street to the Cheney House, 82 Highland Street, where the popular Lionel Train display by Anthony Hoerter will be on view.

Returning to Main Street, visitors will find the Class of 2015 of the Ashland School selling raffle tickets, hot dogs and water on the sidewalk in front of the Ashland Insurance Center at 44 Main Street. Tickets are available for $5 each, or five for $20, for a box full of prizes worth over $400. The raffle winner will be announced at the tree lighting ceremony. The wreaths that have been retired from the town utility poles to make room for the new holiday banners are also available for a donation at this site. The local Girl Scout troop will display Christmas Greetings posters in the storefront of the former Ashland Hardware at 58 Main Street.

The Ashland Baptist Church Dining Hall at 57 Main Street is a focus of the evening event. The Ashland Area Recreation Association will give out free coffee and hot chocolate and also sell food. The Ashland Historical Society will display historic photos of Winter in Ashland. The Parks & Recreation Department will hold a Little Ones Workshop to make pine cone birdfeeders. The Dining Hall is also the starting place for a scavenger hunt, organized by the Parks & Recreation Department for children, who will search the downtown for clues to win prizes.

The Community Council and the Friends of the Library will sponsor Storytelling With Shawn, featuring the holiday tales of storyteller and author Shawn Middleton. These interactive and participatory stories will include pirates and princesses, world tales, fables, fairy tales and original favorites. The performance, suitable for all ages, will begin at 7 p.m. in the sanctuary of the Ashland Baptist Church. (Donations will be appreciated, but are not required.)

The celebration concludes at 8 p.m. in Memorial Park, at the corner of Main Street and Riverside Drive. Christmas carols will be sung. The prize winners for the Gift Bag Raffle and the Class of 2015 Raffle will be announced. And, with the help of Santa Claus, the town Christmas tree will be lit.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 November 2013 09:40

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'Deck Your Halls With Works of Art' From the Belknap Mill (323 w/3 col Gagne) Gagne photo 3 col.

LACONIA — Those looking for unique and unforgettable items for holiday gift-giving will want to check out the new Belknap Mill Art Gallery at 25 Beacon Street East in Laconia. Nine artists are displaying their paintings, drawings, and pottery at the new, 1,000-square-foot gallery. All items are offered for sale, with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the ongoing cultural and educational programs at the Mill.

The Mill held a A Meet the Artists Night on Nov. 21, providing an evening of tours, wine, and hors d'oeuvres, with an opportunity to meet the talented people who are sharing the gallery space for the first six months. The show includes pottery, a hand-decorated wooden bench, sketches, and works of art in oil, acrylic, and watercolor.

The Mill's special "Deck Your Halls With Works of Art" event, running Nov. 23-Dec. 3, also will showcase the works of three other artists — Pamela Charon, B.J. Eckardt, and Kazuko Okubo — with displays in the Mill's Riverside Gallery.

While there, check out the items for sale in the Mill's gift shop and take a tour of the museum with its display of knitting machines and the powerhouse that provided the energy to power the mill when it was operating for the manufacture of socks.

There also will be an opportunity to purchase chances to win a painting by Roger Gagne, "Shaker Sabbath", valued at $750. Tickets are available at the front desk, and online on www.belknapmill.org. A maximum of 250 tickets will be sold, with the drawing to take place on New Year's Eve.

Admission to "Deck Your Halls" is free during regular Mill hours (weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.), with another chance to meet all the artists on Saturday, Nov. 30, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Light refreshments will be served at that event.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 November 2013 09:35

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Moultonborough Joins the Visiting Nurses of Meredith & Center Harbor family (430)

MOULTONBOROUGH — Another milestone was achieved by the Visiting Nurses of Meredith & Center Harbor on November 7 when the Moultonborough Board of Selectmen chose the agency to provide for it's community's homehealth care needs.

After careful consideration of several providers by MVNA Executive Director, Debra Peaslee, Moultonborough Town Administrator Carter Terenzini and the Moultonborough Select Board, the Visiting Nurses of Meredith and Center Harbor was determined to be the best match for the own's residents. For many years Moultonborough has provided its own visiting nurses but recent changes in health care administration and local health care needs have driven this change to broaden and strengthen the community's health care services.

The transition will be gradual and will not affect the quality of health care services for which both agencies have always been known. Several of the Registered Nurses and Licensed Nurses Assistants that have been visiting Meredith and Center Harbor homes are no strangers in Moultonborough. "We have been sharing per diem personnel for years" said Cheryl Gonzalo, VNMCH Executive Director. "Debra Peaslee RN (Director of Moultonborough VNA) will be joining the Visiting Nurses of Meredith & Center Harbor staff full-time, filling the newly created position of Clinical Director. Long time employee Jeri King RN will also assume a full-time position with us", Gonzalo added.

Chairman of the Board, Chuck Thorndike, in his announcement of the decision said "This is a great day in the long history of our agency. We just celebrated our 90th anniversary and we are growing stronger. We endeavor to always be ahead of the curve in providing responsive, high quality and compassionate care."

In addition to now servicing Moultonborough on a regular basis, Visiting Nurses of Meredith and Center Harbor also provides health care to clients in surrounding communities upon request. Thorndike added, "The Visiting Nurses of Meredith & Center Harbor strongly believes in offering home health care service choices to the community. Whether it is your choice of doctor or nurse, we strongly believe that you should always be able to choose the medical resource that is most comfortable and convenient to you. We look forward to serving the Town of Moultonborough and surrounding towns in this regard. Obviously we're happy the town has chosen us to serve their citizens."

Questions regarding this transition may be addressed to either Executive Director Cheryl Gonzalo (279-6611) in Meredith or Debra Peaslee (476-2350) in Moultonborough during the transition.


Last Updated on Monday, 25 November 2013 09:14

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Triathlon club opens registration for 2014 season

LACONIA — Lakes Region Triathlon Club (LRTC), a non-profit triathlon club based out of Laconia Athletic & Swim Club, has opened up registration for the 2014 season.

Included in a membership are group trainings with Tri Coach Suzan Ballmer of Breakaway Athletic Coaching; a club uniform to wear at races and camaraderie with a group of motivated, supportive people pursuing their triathlon goals.

Although members participate in races from throughout New England to the Nationals in Wisconsin; LRTC is a community minded organization that supports a variety of local fundraising efforts such as WLNH Childrens' Auction, The WOW Trail and had a strong presence in the inaugural Marshmallow Man. LRTC members also participate in duathlons, trial runs, marathons, road races, bicycle hill climbs and open water swims.

As a non-profit organization, LRTC relies upon membership dues and the support of local sponsors- MC Cycle & Sport, Laconia Athletic & Swim Club, Rowell's Sewer & Drain, Expanding Horizons and LRGHealthcare.

Off season trainings began Nov. 10, 2013. Registration is open through January 15, 2014. For more information on membership registration or becoming a sponsor go to www.lakesregiontriclub.com or contact Maureen Nix at 528-2203.

Last Updated on Monday, 25 November 2013 09:00

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