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Coffee Festival attracts big crowd to Main Street

LACONIA — New Hampshire's first ever coffee festival held downtown on Saturday afternoon proved a big hit with the hundreds of people who turned out, as well as the coffee roastery vendors, who passed out thousands of samples of their special brands.
''We've been crazy busy. We're brewing non-stop to keep up with the lines,'' said Jessica Littlefield of Woodshed Roasting Company of Laconia, whose owner Brad Fitzgerald, said that he was more than pleased with the large turnout and the opportunity for coffee roasters from all over the state to introduce their coffee to the public.
''This is great for downtown Laconia. It's a wonderful atmosphere with all the stores open and the excitement in the street. They should do something like this once a month,'' said Debbie Welch of Meredith, who was sampling as many coffees as she could along with her friend, Carol Reale, also of Meredith.
Kevin Halligan, chef/owner of the Local Eatery restaurant, who was serving up sandwiches with thick slices coffee roasted steamship round of beef, which he had said took him 13 hours to roast, said it looked like he was going to use up the entire roast before the day was over.
''It's been a good day and a good experience for the people who have shown up. I'm sure this is going to be back again next year.''
John Morin of My Coffee House, had Jim Clark from Black Bear Roastery of Tuftonboro standing alongside him as he served up coffee and hand-made pastries.
Clark, who has been roasting coffee beans for about 15 years, is well-know nationally for his long-standing copyright battle with the coffee house giant Starbucks over his use of the name "Charbucks" for one of his roasts. Clark has won the copyright fight several times in U.S. District Court in New York City.
''This is a picture perfect day. We couldn't have asked for anything better and it's great to see Main Street so alive,'' said Morin.
Sam Delay and Kiley Sullivan of A&E Roastery of Amherst, which has been in business for 10 years and has won polls as the state's best roastery, were doing single cup pour-overs and were kept busy answering questions about their coffees and the best way to prepare them.
''It's an exciting day, lots of people and lots of fun things to do. A lot of the people here have never seen coffee prepared this way and it's been interesting to explain to them what we're doing and teach them new ways of enjoying coffee and bringing out the unique characteristics of different roasts,'' said Delay.
Brooke Sheeran Demers of D Squared Coffee of Exeter said that there was a state of panic at the start of the festival as the electrical power which had been extended up and down the street for the vendors blew out.
''We found our right away that it was a problem with an outlet and solved it real quick,'' said Randy Bullerwell of the Main Street Initiative, which organized the festival.

Main Street, between Hanover Street and Church Street was blocked off to vehicular traffic, during the festival.


Kevin Halligan of the Local Eatery slices a coffee roasted steamship round of beef at the New Hampshire Coffee Festival in Downtown Laconia Saturday. (Roger Amsden photo for the Laconia Daily Sun)


Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 September 2013 03:44

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Burglars scared off by alarm

BELMONT — Police are investigating a burglary at Piche's Ski and Sport Outlet on Route 3 early Friday morning.

Lt. Rich Mann said it appears someone broke a window and was able to get into the building but the alarm started sounding and he or she fled before anything could be stolen.

He said police are pursuing a number of leads. If anyone has any information they should call the Belmont Police at 267-8350.



Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 September 2013 03:32

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Truck stolen from stove store in Tilton found in Laconia

TILTON — Police are investigating a burglary at a Rte. 3 stove sales and installation center that occurred sometime late Thursday night.

Angelo Farruggia, the owner of Fire N' Stone, said yesterday about $40,000 in mostly Dewalt-brand tools as well as two pellet stoves that were still in the crates were taken by what appears to be two white males.

Farruggia said it a security tape shows the two first entered his warehouse sometime around 11 p.m. Thursday and exited carrying what they could in their arms. He said it looked like they dumped their haul in a dark colored Dodge Caravan parked on Church Street.

He said at 11:40 p.m. the tape shows his warehouse garage door opening and his 2013 red 3,500-ton dump truck exiting. He said it turned right from Church Street on to Route 3 and was headed toward Laconia.

Farruggia said there were two brand new stoves in the truck bed but he believes the theft of the stoves was an afterthought and whoever burglarized his place was after tools.

"One of (the stoves) weighs 500 pounds," Farruggia said. "I don't think two guys could lift it from the truck."

He said he thinks the two men loaded up the rest of the tools they were unable to carry and loaded them into the back of the truck.

He said the keys were in the ignition of the Chevy which was locked in the garage.

Farruggia said police told him the truck was recovered over the weekend on School Street in Laconia.

He said he was reaching out to the general public because the truck stands out and he thinks that whoever stole it, his tools, and his stoves may have engaged the hydraulic lift in order to get the stoves out.

"I'm hoping someone either saw the truck or heard it," he said.

If anyone has any information please call the Tilton Police at 286-4442.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 September 2013 03:30

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Meredith selectmen all for fast-tracking safety improvements to 1/4-mile stretch of Rte. 104

MEREDITH — Selectmen indicated strong support for proposed safety improvements on Rte. 104 at the Meredith Center Road and Chase Road intersections at a workshop session Monday afternoon.
Bill Oldenburg of the New Hampshire Department of Transportation's Design Bureau and Jon Hebert, DOT preliminary design engineer, presented a road safety audit report which the DOT initiated nearly three years ago in response to local concerns over the one-quarter mile stretch of road.
Those concerns included the lack of a passing option for vehicles which are behind those making a left turn onto Chase Road when headed east on Rte. 104 and the obscuring of left turning vision for those trying to enter Rte. 104 and proceed west from Meredith Center Road.
The report says that eastbound traffic turning right onto Meredith Center Road obscures the view of motorists trying to enter Rte. 104 and proceed in a westerly direction and that the right turn lane is frequently used as a passing lane in an area where the speed limit is 55 miles per hour and which saw nine crashes from 2002 until 2009.
Hebert said the proposed project includes construction of a left turn bypass shoulder at Chase Road and an eastbound offset right turn lane, 12 feet wide with a two foot shoulder and a painted island, into Meredith Center Road which would improve the sight distance for left turning traffic looking west from Meredith Center Road.
The roadway work would start 400 feet west of Chase Road on Rte. 104 and continue east to about 100 feet east of the Meredith Center Road.
One option, which would cost about $425,000, could be accomplished by the spring of 2015 and would be done entirely with state and federal highway funds. A second option, also done completely without any local funding, which would, in addition to other improvements in the first option, add a painted island west of the Chase Road intersection to better delineate the left turn bypass shoulder, would cost about $550,000 and could take up to three or more years to put in place as the entire project might not fall within the existing right of way and would necessitate eminent domain proceedings.
Selectman Lou Kahn said that he was all in favor of the proposed changes and Selectman Herb Vadney said that he thought the town should express its support for the most easily achieved option so that safety concerns could be addressed as soon as possible.
Town Manager Phil Warren said that the board of selectmen will take up the proposal in the near future and that he will draft a letter of support for the proposal for the board's consideration.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 September 2013 03:22

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