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Harry Potter exhibit opens Tuesday at Laconia Public Library

LACONIA — The Laconia Public Library will host the grand opening of "Harry Potter's World: Renaissance Science, Magic, and Medicine," on Tuesday, June 7, at 7 p.m., on the upper level of the library. The first 50 people will receive free giveaways, and everyone will be entered in a raffle to win a complete Harry Potter boxed set.

In 1997, British author J. K. Rowling introduced the world to Harry Potter and a literary phenomenon was born. Millions of readers have followed Harry to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where he discovers his heritage, encounters new plants and animals, and perfects his magical abilities. Although a fantasy story, the magic in the Harry Potter books is partially based on Renaissance traditions that played an important role in the development of Western science, including alchemy, astrology and natural philosophy. Incorporating the work of several 15th- and 16th-century thinkers, this exhibit examines important ethical topics such as the desire for knowledge, the effects of prejudice, and the responsibility that comes with power. Using materials from the National Library of Medicine, the exhibition explores Harry Potter's world, its roots in Renaissance science, and the ethical questions that affected not only the wizards of Harry Potter, but also the featured historical thinkers.

In honor of Harry Potter's World grand opening, many Laconia downtown businesses will celebrate with the library on Tuesday. The Local Eatery will be serving Harry Potter-inspired food and drink on Tuesday evening, Wayfarer Coffee Roaster will have a Harry Potter drink special all day, the Laconia Village Bakery will have Harry Potter-themed treats, and Sunflower Natural Foods will have a magical display of herbs, candles, and more necessary items for the budding witch or wizard.

Harry Potter festivities will continue at the library with a Harry Potter Crafternoon for teens on Thursday, June 9, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Adults can join in for a Harry Potter Craft Night on Monday, June 27, at 6 p.m. Make Flying Keys, Felix Felicis, and even Mandrakes! Please be sure to preregister for the adult program by calling the library at 524-4775 ext. 12.

The Laconia Public Library is the first public library in New Hampshire to host this traveling exhibit made possible by the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health. Harry Potter's World will be on display through Friday, July 15.

LHS baseball, girls lacrosse teams seek to advance in Division III

LACONIA — Two Laconia High School teams will be in action Saturday as they seek to advance in Division III state tournament action.
The defending Division III champion girls lacrosse team, which finished in first place with a 14-2 record and defeated Lebanon 18-3 Thursday, will face fourth-ranked Derryfield in a 7 p.m. game at at Bedford High School. Derryfield defeated fifth-ranked Bow 15-14 Thursday.
Helen Tautkus and Mackenzie Howe each scored five goals for the Sachems and Becca Howe added four.
The baseball team, which finished fourth in the division with a 12-4 record, held on to beat 13th ranked Franklin by a 12-7 score. Thursday. They will play a 4 p.m. Saturday at Robbie Mills Field on Meredith Center Road against fifth ranked Monadnock, which beat Somersworth 13-1 Thursday.
The Belmont High School baseball team, which finished third in Division II with a 13-3 record, defeated Stevens High School of Claremont 11-7 Thursday thanks to Caleb Drouin's sixth-inning grand slam. They are now the highest ranked team left in contention in the tournament as both top-ranked Campbell and second-ranked Conant lost Thursday.
Belmont will host sixth ranked Bow, which beat Winnisquam 10-0 Thursday.
Should both Laconia and Belmont win, they will advance to the quarterfinals Tuesday at Southern New Hampshire University in Hooksett.
In Division III girls softball Franklin, which was ranked second with a 15-1 record, trounced Monadnock 15-1 Thursday and on Monday will host Conant in a 4 p.m. game, Third-ranked Prospect Mountain beat Newfound 10-1 and will host sixth-ranked Berlin at 4 p.m. Belmont, which rallied for a 4-3 win over Newport Thursday will play at top-ranked White Mountains Monday at 4 p.m.

Inter-Lakes Elementary bids Principal Kelley adieu


MEREDITH — The students called him "awesome," "nice and friendly," "creative," "amazing," "smart," "handsome," "silly," "caring" and "a one of a kind kind of guy," while Jack Carty, whose tenure on the Inter-Lakes School Board paralleled his career at Inter-Lakes Elementary School, said flatly "Steve Kelley is the best pure educator I have ever met."

Thursday evening, the gym was filled with seating and few seats were empty as pupils, parents, colleagues and well wishers bid farewell and said thank you to the retiring Kelley, who placed his stamp on Inter-Lakes Elementary School for 26 of his 32 years in education, the last 17 of them as its principal.

Dressed in black with a garish tie, Kelley, on guitar and vocals, fronted "The Educators," a group drawn from the school staff he called "rock star wannabes," to open the celebration with with a medley of Beatles' classics. Then he watched as the Blue Wave Broadcasters presented a video featuring interviews with teachers and pupils who were asked to offer their impressions about "Dr. Kelley."

Set in a closet jammed with neckties, a second video played to his fondness for flamboyant ties. Ushered to the stage and seated in a chair by Thing One and Thing Two, Kelley listened as the Cat in the Hat rhymed "Doc, You Moved Mountains." A quartet of newsboys shouting "Extra, extra! Read all about it!" delivered a special edition of the "Inter-Lakes Tribune" announcing Kelley's retirement and celebrating his career.

The Parent Teachers Organization presented Kelley with a memorial of his time at the school to match another that will be placed on the campus.

With that, the gym emptied and the celebration resumed outdoors at the "Living Classroom," the greenhouse which counts among Kelley's most significant contributions to the school. Lisa Merrill of the School Board unveiled a plaque above the entrance naming the Living Classroom in honor of Dr. Steve Kelley.

Speaking at what he called "a bittersweet moment in my life," Kelley said there are hundreds of names for the greenhouse. "It's not my greenhouse," he said. "It's our greenhouse and to the students, it's your greenhouse."

Describing Kelley as "extraordinary," Carty said "He was always focused on education as the bottom line and he made it work." Kelley, he explained, won the affection and respect of the staff and the pupils.

"If Steve Kelley said 'Let's go on a hike' and walked off the edge of a cliff," he remarked, "they'd all follow him."

Kelley came to Inter-Lakes Elementary School in 1983, straight after graduating from Plymouth State University, and taught second and fifth grades. Five years later he was named assistant principal, with responsibilities for Sandwich Central School and Lang Street School as well. He left the Inter-Lakes School District in 1992 to become principal of Conway Elementary School, a position he held until 1998 when Jean Schlager, the principal who first brought him Inter-Lakes Elementary School, tapped him to succeed her.

Kelley, who earned master's and doctoral degrees from the University of New Hampshire, has been named New Hampshire Principal of the Year as well as a national distinguished principal, an honor that earned him a visit to the White House. in 2009 Inter-Lakes Elementary School was honored as the top elementary school in the state.

"I'm very overwhelmed by the love and support of the community," Kelley said. "It's a special connection. It's been a great ride." He said he was especially pleased and moved to see those he remembered as students returning as parents of children at the school. "It's amazing how time flies."

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Dr. Steve Kelley was mobbed and high-fived by adoring pupils at the close of ceremonies to mark his retirement after serving for 17 years as the principal of Inter-Lakes Elementary School. (Michael Kitch/Laconia Daily Sun)

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Kelley joins the "newsboys" who brought attention to a special edition of the "Inter-Lakes Tribune" reporting on his retirement. (Michael Kitch/Laconia Daily Sun)


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Inter-Lakes Principal Steve Kelley addresses the crowd at his retirement gathering Thursday. (Michael Kitch/Laconia Daily Sun)