Canterbury Shaker Village and Sanborn Mills Farm Launch "Hands to Work" Partnership

CANTERBURY — Canterbury Shaker Village and Sanborn Mills Farm of Loudon are launching Hands to Work, a collaborative educational partnership. Lynn Martin-Graton will lead Hands to Work as the Director of Folklife and Agriculture. Named for the Shaker motto, Hands to Work will create a contemporary community on the grounds of these two historic sites where the Shaker and Yankee traditions of the past come to life in a modern world.

Hands to Work will create opportunities for people to learn by doing physical work in the same workshops, fields, and forests where the Shakers established their legacy of innovation design, entrepreneurship and simple living, and where rugged Yankee individualists carved a living out of the wilderness. Activities will include everything associated with traditional Folklife and agriculture distinctive to the Northeastern United States.

The first phase of the project will research models nationwide to ensure that the partnership makes the most out of its resources. Recommendations will then be developed to build and fund the infrastructure needed to support the hive of activity that Hands to Work will become. Seed money for the feasibility phase of the partnership has been contributed by supporters of Canterbury Shaker Village and Sanborn Mills Farm.

Canterbury Shaker Village is one of the largest and most important complexes of historic structures in the state and has an international reputation for outstanding stewardship of its resources. With over 25 restored and original Shaker buildings on 696 acres and five mill ponds, the museum preserves the 200-year legacy of the Canterbury Shakers and provides a place for learning, reflection, and renewal of the human spirit. Known for their innovative design, entrepreneurship, commitment to equality and simple living, the Shakers were accomplished artisans and farmers.

"Canterbury Shaker Village and Sanborn Mills Farm are located only seven miles apart and our missions are very complimentary," noted Funi Burdick, Executive Director of Canterbury Shaker Village. "The Hands to Work partnership represents our commitment to expand New Hampshire's folklife and agricultural programming and deepen our collective connection to these traditions."

Before and during the industrial revolution, Sanborn Mills Farm was a thriving economic center of activity with its own sawmill, grist mill and blacksmith shop centered around the two mill ponds that provided power for the local community. Since 1997, Paula and Colin Cabot have worked to restore the farm to working order with the goal of accommodating workshops in farming with oxen and draft horses and traditional blacksmithing. Sanborn Mills Farm is committed to sustainable agriculture and forestry through the integration of draft animal power in its agricultural practices.

"Learning by putting your hands to work can change your life" says Colin Cabot, of Sanborn Mills Farm. "We want people to experience a different kind of time, work on something in-depth while living at Hands to Work, and leave enriched by the experience."

Lynn Martin-Graton brings more than 30 years of experience as an arts administrator and folklorist to her new role as Director of Folklife and Agriculture. Most recently, she served as the Acting Director of the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts from 2009-2014 and served as the Traditional Arts Coordinator for the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts from 1998 to 2013. Her background in heritage arts includes researching, documenting, and presenting traditional crafts, music and occupational traditions, as well as overseeing countless apprenticeships for the preservation of traditional knowledge both in New Hampshire and in other parts of the country.

Martin-Graton's accomplishments in New Hampshire include having served as the New Hampshire-based curator for the state's landmark presentation at the 1999 Smithsonian Folklife Festival and for the restaging at Hopkinton Fairgrounds in 2000. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Ceramics & Sculpture from the University of Guam, certification as a secondary art teacher, and a Masters Degree in Pacific Island Studies from the University of Hawaii.

"It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to work with two visionary leaders in New Hampshire and play a direct role in creating a major destination for people who want to learn or practice heritage-based skills," said Martin-Graton. "We hope Hands to Work will serve as a national model for the connection between heritage, responsible land use, and sustainability."

Canterbury Shaker Village is dedicated to preserving the 200-year Shaker legacy of entrepreneurship, innovative design and simple living by providing a place for learning, reflection, and renewal of the human spirit. Visitors are encouraged to rethink tradition by learning about the life, ideals, values, and history of the Canterbury Shakers. The National Historic Landmark includes 25 restored original and four reconstructed Shaker buildings, and 694 acres of forests, fields, gardens, nature trails, and mill ponds under permanent conservation easement.

The Village cafe offers simple lunch fare and the Museum Store features unique gifts and wares handmade by regional artists. Canterbury Shaker Village, located at 288 Shaker Road in Canterbury, New Hampshire, is open daily in 2014 from May 26-October 19 and weekends in May and November. For more information, visit

Sanborn Mills Farm is a traditional New Hampshire working farm with agricultural fields and managed forests, timber-framed barns and outbuildings still in use for animals, and a sawmill, a grist mill (both water-powered), and a blacksmith shop, all dating from the 1830s. The farm buildings are clustered around two dams at the outlet of Sanborn Pond, and are surrounded by almost 2,000 acres of open space in conservation.

A century and more ago, Sanborn Mills Farm was a bustling, thriving center of agricultural activities that supported an extended family and served the community. Today it has gathered a group of instructors, farmers, craftspeople and historians dedicated to teaching the traditional skills that were commonplace then. It provides opportunities for people to learn old-fashioned ways and explore how they can be integrated into modern life with the belief that these skills and a vital connection to the land continue to be important and relevant. For more information, visit

Gilford Community Church summer fair & auction to be August 22 and 23

GILFORD — The Gilford Community Church Summer Fair and Silent Auction will be held on Friday, Aug. 22, from 4 to 7 p.m., and Saturday, Aug. 23, from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The 30th annual Gilford Rotary pancake breakfast will be held in the Youth Center next to the church from 7 to 10 a.m. on Saturday.

Friday evening there will be a limited presentation of the fair (no jewelry until Saturday). Saturday will feature outdoor fair areas (chuck wagon hamburgers and hot dogs, ice-cream, fried dough and live music), as well as the indoor white elephant, books, and baked goods. There will be no luncheon this year, but anyone can get a a hamburger or hotdog from the Chuckwagon.

New this year are water-based games in the courtyard for children (slip n' slide, a bubbles station, water balloons and a misting room) as well as an inflatable obstacle course on the upper parking lot.

There will be a used bike sale.

Walt Disney's Anna and Elsa from the movie "Frozen" will be available in person in the Youth Center to meet with their young fans. Parents will be able to buy tickets on the GYC website ( Children will be able to meet and have their picture taken with the two princesses.

There will be a silent auction in the Youth Center as well as the selling of toys and games.

Clean donations are being accepted for the white elephant (no TVs, computers, appliances, encyclopedias, clothing or shoes, baby strollers, car seats or exercise equipment.) Fine furniture and antique donations are being assessed and accepted for the silent auction.

Guided paddle of Meredith conservation area on Tuesday

MEREDITH — The Lakes Region Conservation Trust will offer a scenic and guided paddle to Stonedam Island Conservation Area on Tuesday, July 29.

The island is a 112-acre property with 2.7 miles of undeveloped shoreline acquired by trust in 1982.

The paddle will be led by a team of knowledgeable and experienced LRCT paddle excursion guides, including John Robbins, the Stonedam Island Property Adopter and David Mallard, the Land and Stewardship Director of LRCT.

The trip will begin at Cattle Landing on Meredith Neck Road and will follow the route along the shore of Meredith
Neck. The total round-trip distance for this paddle is approximately four miles. Participants will have the option to disembark for a walk on the island's trails, led by John Robbins, or to continue on for an additional three-mile paddling circumnavigation of the island. The one-half to 1½ mile guided walk will follow shoreline, wetland, and forest trails on the island.

Participants will have lunch together at a stopping point along the route and there will be opportunities for swimming in a few spots along the way for those who are interested.

Guides and participants will meet at 8 a.m. to unload and prepare for the paddle. The paddle will begin at 8:30 a.m. and return at approximately 3 p.m. Preregistration is required for this paddle and will be limited to 20 kayaks/canoes.

There are also a limited number of spaces available for transport to Stonedam Island by pontoon boat, for additional participants interested in joining in on the walk but not the paddle. Those accessing the island via pontoon boat will be asked to arrive at the launch site at 8:40 a.m. with an 8:50 a.m. departure time.

To preregister, please contact LRCT at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 603-253-3301. All LRCT guided excursions are free to all.

NH Music Fest announces ‘New Vibrations’ initiative (555)

PLYMOUTH — The New Hampshire Music Festival is launching a mentoring program that pairs students with Festival audience members to learn more about how an orchestra works and hopefully enhance their appreciation of orchestral music.

The first group of students and mentors to participate in the New Vibrations program will attend the Festival's Family Concert on July 26 at 10 a.m. at the Silver Center for the Arts in Plymouth, and will be led by 10 volunteers from the neighboring towns of Holderness and Ashland. Future groups will attend the classical concerts on either Thursday or Saturday throughout the summer season.

Liz Cody of Ashland came up with the idea for the program as a way to bring in more young people to Festival performances.

"I was at a concert and thinking about how inspired I felt by the music, how transformational the experience was," Cody said. "If we could involve more kids and get them interested in music at a younger age, we will have a whole new generation of musicians and audience members and ensure that organizations such as the Festival will always have a place in our region. These are the future leaders of our community."

Cody will be one of the group leaders along with Festival Board member Sid Lovett, who will be in charge of a group from Holderness. Each is recruiting four other mentors from their towns to participate, for a total of ten audience members in the initial group.

"We hope that other towns will hear about the program and want to be involved. It would be great if we were able to add more towns and students each week, and also include other types of activities, such as theatre or dance. This is really an opportunity to promote music and arts education in a fun way," Lovett said of the idea.

Students of all ages are invited to join New Vibrations and the Festival is seeking volunteers from all towns to serve as mentors. Each volunteer will be responsible for purchasing a ticket for themselves and accompanying the group to the Family Concert, which is free to all kids 18 and under and college students with an ID. Students are encouraged to ask questions, learn more about the instruments, music and orchestra and meet with some of the musicians to hear about their experiences as members of the Festival. After the concert, the group will grab an ice cream at local favorite M 'n M Scoops on Main Street in Plymouth.

Friends of the Arts and the Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire will both be involved with the project and are inviting all of their students to participate. Frumie Selchen, executive director of the Arts Alliance, is excited to bring this type of initiative to the community.

"We were so happy to hear about this idea, particularly because it has a great synergy with other programs we are doing. Being able to offer this as part of our Youth Arts initiative provides students with a wide variety of opportunities to experience all types of visual and performing arts. We hope that enthusiasm for these types of programs will allow us to offer them year-round," Selchen said.

For further information or to purchase tickets for the New Hampshire Music Festival, please visit or call the Silver Center for the Arts box office at 603-535-2787.