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Ironman races to start

By GAIL OBER, LACONIA DAILY SUN

GILFORD — More than 2,000 athletes are beginning to descend on the Lakes Region for the 16th running of what is now called the Ironman 70.3 Timberman race.

The two-day event brings athletes from all over the world to competitively swim in Lake Winnipesaukee for 1.2 miles, run a half-marathon – or 13.37 miles, and bike around the Lakes Region for 56.16 miles.

On Saturday, said Gilford Police Lt. Kris Kelley, is the Sprint race, which is a smaller version of Sunday's big race. Kelley said the tri-athletes will meet in the very early morning at Ellacoya State Park and the race itself, which begins with the swim portion, starts at 7 a.m.

On Sunday, check-in and set up time begins at 3:30 a.m. and the Ironman 70.3 Timberman race begins at 6:30 a.m. with the swim portion. This is a qualifying race for the 2017 national championship in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

In both cases, said Kelley, the last bicyclists are usually finished by 3:30 p.m.

Kelley said that no roads are closed during either race, but said there will be a lot of slow-moving traffic around Route 11 and Ellacoya, so motorists should plan for that.

The Ironman 70.3 Timberman race has been held in Gilford and the Lakes Region since its inception in 2000. The initial event drew about 600 people but now draws as many as 2,000 athletes and spectators.

Kelley, who competed in the Sprint race a few years ago, said the event is one of the more popular events in the Lakes Regional annually.

"This is a great revenue source for all of the area's hotels, restaurants, Gunstock and other venues and we are proud to host it in our community," he said.

Deputy Fire Chief Brad Ober said this will be the third year in a row they will have air conditioning in the medical tent, which he said cuts down on the number of people who have to go to the hospital.

He said he personally hopes the humidity stays on the low side for the two days but said he doesn't anticipate anything temperature wise that would make this race any different that those in past years.
"We are gearing up to be busy but we don't expect anything catastrophic," he said.

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Just one contested race for Laconia School Board

LACONIA — Only one of the two open seats on the School Board will be contested in the general election on Nov. 8.

In Ward 2, Barbara Luther, the incumbent, is running without opposition.

In Ward 3, Aaron Hayward and Albert Knowles will vie to succeed Scott Vachon. Vachon, who has represented the ward on the board for the past 13 years, chose not to run for re-election.

Superstar surprise - Justin Timberlake shows up at local couple’s wedding

By GINGER KOZLOWSKI, LACONIA DAILY SUN

LACONIA — As if getting married doesn't make one's day exciting enough, imagine having a superstar singer drop in for a photo on that special day.

That's what happened last Saturday, Aug. 13, when Chelsey Gaudet and Ryan Parks were getting ready for pre-wedding photos at the Mount Washington Hotel and Resort.

Parks' best man, Joe Rando, said Justin Timberlake, pop singer, songwriter, actor and record producer, was spotted as he led the groomsmen out along the back deck of the hotel.

"I noticed him, and told Dennis (Gaudet, father of the bride) he IS here, sitting right there."

At some point, while Parks was waiting for his bride-to-be, Timberlake was asked if he would mind coming over for a photo.

"I turned around and he was right there, right after Chelsey had come out," said Rando. I was starstruck a little bit."

Timberlake was in New Hampshire for another wedding in Jackson, and had stayed and played golf at the resort.

"In video, you can see him come up, he shook hands, gave Chelsey a hug," said Rando. "He stood there, let us all take photos, wished them best of luck and then he was off."

It wasn't long before the news of the wedding crasher sped around the world, thanks to social media and TMZ. A video taken of the moment was shown on both TMZ and ABC's Good Morning America on Monday.

Chelsey Gaudet is an agency principal of Allstate in Tilton, and the oldest daughter of Dennis and Carolyn Gaudet of AutoServ. Parks is an AutoServ sales manager, and the couple resides in Concord.  The newlyweds are in Cabo San Lucas now for honeymoon, no doubt still amazed at the turn of events on their special day.

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