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With pond name up in air, no one seems to know who Tilton Town Forest is named for

GILFORD — Selectmen have weighed in on an effort to name a remote pond in the Robert Tilton Town Forest in the Belknap Mountain Range ''Moulton Pond'' and have countered with a proposal that it instead be named ''Roberts Pond.''
Town Administrator Scott Dunn said that the board took the action at its August 28 meeting and that he has since filed a request with the United States Board on Geographic Names for that name for the pond.
But there is one glaring omission in the written request, because no one is certain at this point in time exactly who the Robert Tilton for whom the town forest is named was.
''We don't know who he was,'' said Dunn, who said that the request had to be for ''Roberts Pond'', not ''Robert's Pond'' as the Board on Geographic names doesn't allow apostrophes in names.
Everett McLaughlin of the town's Conservation Commission, who originally proposed that the small 6/10 of an acre pond be named ''Roberts Pond'' at the August 14 selectmen's meeting, says that he's been researching all of the conservation land in town but still hasn't found out who Robert Tilton was.
McLaughlin said that the 130-acre town forest, which is located in the Piper-Whiteface area near both Gilmanton and Belmont, was mentioned in a town report on March 12, 1986 but that there is no record of how the town acquired the property or when the transaction took place.
''There's no record at the Registry of Deeds, so we think it must have been through the Probate Court and someone's will,'' said McLaughlin.
He said that the Conservation Commission has known about the request from Soren Denlinger, 15, of Asbury, New Jersey, a high school sophomore, to have the unnamed pond, which is located 9/10th of a mile southwest of Round Pond, declared to be ''Moulton Pond'' for several months.
''I thought at first we should name it ''Soren's Pond'' because he's shown so much interest in it. But the Board on Geographic Names says you can't name geographic features for a living person,'' says McLaughlin.
His proposal for the name ''Roberts Pond'' first came before selectmen at the August 14 meeting but no action was taken by the board at that meeting.
Belknap County Commissioners, who received a letter from the Board on Geographic Names about Denlinger's proposal on August 2, have discussed it at subsequent meetings but decided to take no action on the request when they met Wednesday morning.

The commissioners received a copy of the letter Gilford had sent to the Board on Geographic names in which it said that the Moulton Pond designation was unacceptable to the town and requested that it be named Roberts Pond.

They voted to check a box on the form they had received urging the board ''to render a decision without our recommendation.''

Commissioner Ed Philpot (D-Laconia) said at a recent meeting of the commissioners that he had talked with long-time Gilford Conservation Commission member Charles Coons and others about the pond in question and had heard about the ''Roberts Pond'' proposal and planned on writing a personal letter to the Board on Geographic Names.
Coons, who retired several years ago from the Gilford Conservation Commission, said that he had always assumed that the Robert Tilton Town Forest was named for Robert P. Tilton, who served as clerk of Belknap County Superior Court for 30 years.
Tilton retired as clerk in 1987 and his brother, Richard, was a long-time Probate Court judge in Belknap County.

Last Updated on Friday, 20 September 2013 02:34

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Gilmanton made six arrests over past two weeks

GILMANTON – Police arrested seven people in the past two weeks, including three motorists accused of driving while intoxicated.
Gene Welcome, 56, of Gilmanton was charged with driving while intoxicated, second offense, on August 24.
William Kimball, 25, of Laconia was charged with driving while intoxicated on August 24 and Nicholas Buzzotta, 26, of Gilford was charged with driving while intoxicated on August 30.
On September 3 police arrested Caitlin Fillion, 24 on a bench warrant.
On September 5, Nancy Marando, 54, of Laconia was charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest, criminal threatening, and domestic violence assault.
On September 5, Corey Scrocca, 24, of Barnstead was charged with driving after suspension or revocation.

Robert Dudley, 51, of Gilmanton was charged with driving after suspension on September 5.

 

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 September 2013 01:18

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Thousands of canoes & kayaks expected off of Weirs Beach as LakeFest goes for the record

LACONIA – One by one the canoes and kayaks are amassing at Weirs Beach this morning in an attempt to break the Guinness World record for most boats "rafted" at one time.

Hosted by New Hampshire Lakes Association – a volunteer agency that works to educate and stop boaters including canoeists and kayakers from introducing invasive plant and animal species into New Hampshire's lakes - LakeFest's rafting goal is to link together more than 2,099 canoes and kayaks at one time.

Volunteer and LakeFest coordinator Andrea LaMoreaux said the attempt to break the record is also a way of promoting the organization's Clean, Dry and Drive Program.

LaMoreaux explained that water in boats can host invasive species, such as zebra mussels, in larval form and even a small amount of water can host thousands of microscopic larvae.

She said all canoes and kayaks entered in today's rafting will be power-washed before entering the water unless the owner says the craft has been out of the water and dry for five days.

"The critical part here is the dry part," LaMoreaux said. Five days of being out of the water and dried will kill the larvae.

She said the invasive plant species milfoil is typically transferred by boat propellers but can typically be seen and cleaned before the boat hits the water. LakeFest volunteers through the New Hampshire Lakes Association have been checking boats in New Hampshire for 11 years and have recorded 1,256 "saves" from invasive plant species contamination.

But the fun part is breaking the record.

There are three places where boaters can enter today's event – Weirs Beach, Akwa Marina in Weirs Beach and the boat ramp in Meredith Bay.

She said organizers are aiming to have all of the canoes and kayaks assembled in the Weirs Beach area early in the morning. She said the actual rafting - where every boat has to be in contact with the boats on either side – will begin after the Mount Washington embarks on its 10 a.m. cruise.

The cost to enter on the day of the rafting is $20 and every boater must be wearing a life jacket in order to be counted. A number is assigned to each entrant as he or she registers and a blue wristband will be issued as a means of identification.

She said three auditors will be on hand to count the boaters and report their findings to the Guinness World Book of records.

Caption (Photo in email) Mike Mooney (left) of Irwin Marine and LakeFest volunteer Dan O'Brien portage one of the kayaks that will be entered in today's attempt to break the Guinness world record of 2,099 canoes and kayaks rafted together at one time. (Laconia Daily Sun Photo – Gail Ober)

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 September 2013 01:17

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Nadia's Owner Remembered for his Swagger, Sense of Humor

LACONIA — Mike Girardi, the former owner of Nadia's Restaurant, is remembered by his many friends in the Lakes Region as a beloved character whose swagger and sense of humor made him an unforgettable person.
Services for Girardi, 53, who died August 30, were held at Bayside Cemetery Thursday, where a family member said of him ''Michael gave a lot more than he took.''
Jose DeMatos and his wife, Stacie, owners of Channel Marine Cottages, were good friends with Girardi, who their daughters Olivia, 10, and Grace, 8, would call Mr. Karate because they couldn't pronounce his last name.
''He had a lot of Mike-isms and would always say 'what's going on tiddlywinks?' whenever we met. And he'd come into our store and say 'where's Hosey?' instead of pronouncing Jose's name right. He was a great friend and our kids just loved him,'' recalls Stacy DeMatos.
''He was great cook and made the world's best meatball,'' says her husband, Jose, who recalls that Girardi made a special batch of them for his daughter's birthday.
And he says that Girardi had a flair and a sense of style which made him memorable with everyone who came into his restaurant.
''In the 90s NASCAR was just coming into the Lakes Region, Nadia's was the place to go. We'd call up and ask for a table and when we got there he'd have the bruschetta and the balsamic vinegar on the side on our table when we got there, along with a bottle of our favorite wine, Rocca del a Machia, a really good red wine and everything they cooked there was great. His hospitality was wonderful. He'd come and sit down at your table and talk with you. You felt like you were in his home instead of at a restaurant,'' recalls DeMatos.
He said that he and his wife vacationed in Florida with Girardi and his girlfriend and remember him making the best Chicken Parmesan dish they ever had.
''He made a cream-based sauce that was really terrific,'' recalls DeMatos.
Another friend, Tom McCormack, who runs Weirs the Beef, grew up on Boston's North Shore with Girardi and says that Girardi had a John Travolta style personality.
''He was very popular, a funny guy. And when he ran Nadia's and you went in there you could see how he made everyone comfortable. I always remember him riding around in his Mercedes convertible and pulling up and getting out and making some joke that would make you bend over with laughter.''
Friends recounted how Girardi would try to convince people that he was actually the model for the Anthony of Prince Spaghetti ads and how he liked to tell the story of how his mother chased a would-be robber away from her small North End bakery in Boston with a rolling pin.
After the Nadia's restaurant building was sold to TD North Bank, Girardi and his girlfriend relocated Nadia's to the Lobster Pound Restaurant at the Weirs. In recent years he had worked at AutoServ in Tilton.
Born in Brisbane, Australia, Girardi was raised in both Italy and Everett, Mass. and is survived by his mother, Lina, who was a frequent player at the Funspot Bingo Hall, a son, two sisters, two nephews and a niece.

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Mike Girardi (Courtesy photo)

Last Updated on Saturday, 07 September 2013 01:17

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