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Playscape at Squam Lakes Science Center will allow children to experience life as a red squirrell

HOLDERNESS — Squam Lakes Natural Science Center will open on Wednesday, July 1, the new Gordon Interactive Playscape, an intricately designed playground where children can play and learn.

This new exhibit teaches children about the concept of prey and predator, by having them simulate the obstacles faced by a red squirrel.

The playscape includes many fun features, aimed to stimulate children's minds and imaginations.

For instance, kids can use a rope swing to mimic a squirrel jumping to a bird feeder, where they ring a bell to signify their arrival. A series of platforms challenges kids to maintain their balance, as if they are squirrels moving through the forest canopy. A bird's nest overlooking the exhibit provides an impressive sight and includes a thirteen-foot slide so children can land back on the ground and begin their adventures again.

The Gordon Interactive Playscape was designed by Naturalist Eric D'Aleo and Facilities Supervisor Dean Smith. They were inspired largely by the designs of Ku Kuk, a German company which uses natural materials to build play areas, sometimes with a nature theme. D'Aleo and Smith have put a great deal of effort into creating the Playscape, including, but not limited to, hours of research, numerous meetings with the education exhibit team to present, discard, and/or modify ideas, CAD and hand-drawn renderings of the design, and construction.

D'Aleo and Smith hope for kids to have fun while being active and moving outside. Children get to crawl, climb, dig, and slide, while they imagine what it's like to be a red squirrel. They also hope visitors will gain a new understanding of the predator-prey relationship.

"[W]hen [having] fun, a person is engaged and excited by the experience, which provides an opportunity for learning and understanding," said D'Aleo. "It's one thing to read about predators and prey; it's another thing when you have a chance to role-play the experience."

This new addition to Squam Lakes Natural Science Center was funded by donors to the Nature Matters Capital Campaign. The campaign was organized by the Science Center's Board of Trustees. It has funded the Gordon Interactive Playscape, the Wood Energy Exhibit completed in 2014, the Water Matters Pavilion opening in 2016, and a new raptor mews soon to be under construction.

Last Updated on Friday, 19 June 2015 07:20

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Children’s theater company performing at PSU on Thursdays

PLYMOUTH — IMPACT, the children's theater company of Jean's Playhouse in Lincoln, will present its repertoire of children's stories adapted for the stage at 2 p.m. on Thursdays this summer at the Silver Center for the Arts on the Plymouth State University campus.

The audience will have a chance to meet their favorite princess, bear, puppet, cat and all the other characters from the show in the lobby after each performance.

The production for June 25 is "Goldilocks and the Three Bears." Other performances scheduled are: July 2. "The Pied Piper of Hamlin;" July 9, "Puss in Boots;" July 16, "Arabian Nights;" July 23, "The Three Little Pigs;" July 30, "The Emperor's New Clothes;" Aug. 6, "Snow White and the Seven Dwarves;" and Aug. 13, "Pinocchio."

Children's Theatre has been entertaining regional audiences for more than 20 years, with original adaptations of fairy tales and folk tales produced and created for children of all ages. Shows are approximately 40 minutes long and appeal to adults, and children aged 3 years and older. Children will have a chance to meet their favorite characters after each show.

Tickets are $7 per seat (including babes in arms) at the Silver Center Box Office, (603) 535-2787 or (800) 779-3869, or $5 per seat for groups of 15 or more purchased at the same time.

Last Updated on Friday, 19 June 2015 07:12

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Special Father's Day events at Gunstock

GILFORD — Gunstock Mountain Adventure Park inviting Dads to come and enjoy themselves this Sunday, Father's Day.

Fathers will receive a free Discover pass Sunday when another in the party buys a regular admission. The pass includes a scenic lift ride to the summit, Water Wars, Climbing Walls our new Stunt Jump, Paddle Boats, and Tubing into the Big Air Bag.

Gunstock Zip Line Destination with the Aerial Treetop tour and Segway tours are available as well. Reservations for these can be made online.

There will be a free photo booth from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. to remember the day, live music will be at the New Landing Zone outdoor restaurant from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will complement that with custom Bloody Marys and the new Not Your Father's Root Beer.

A special discount for Segway tours will be available on Sunday morning. Spaces are limited and are on a first reserve basis. Call the Gunstock Mountain Adventure Park at 603-737-4388

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 June 2015 08:07

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Motorcycle racer makes appearance at restaurant on Weirs Boulevard

LACONIA — Three time Loudon Classic winner, New Hampshire Motor Speedway record holder and local racer, Shane Narbonne, stopped by Nothin' Fancy Wednesday evening to display his GN Gonzales Motorsports Yamaha R1 and hold a Meet & Greet with fans and Laconia Bike Week attendees.

Shane began his racing career at the age of 7 at Sideways Promotions dirt Flat Track in Winchendon, MA and eventually crossed over to road racing. Currently, Shane races professionally in the AMA MotoAmerica series and also at NHMS for the LRRS Series.

He will be at NHMS all weekend and will take part in the 92nd Loudon Classic on Saturday.

Shane can also frequently be found helping youth racers follow their dreams, such as local racer from Northfield, Ben Gloddy. Ben was also at Nothin' Fancy signing autographs Wednesday evening. Ben was twice, a New England Champion and New York State Champion and currently races Flat Track in New York at Square Deal Riders on his Honda 85cc Dirt Bike. When he is not in New York racing, he can be found at Wachusett Valley Riders Club in MA or in Maine at Boxshop Speedway racing Supermoto. Recently, Ben was invited to attend the first United States Superprestigio event in Las Vegas. This Flat Track event will be held in November and will feature top racers from all over the world.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 June 2015 07:49

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