Altrusa Club’s Taste of the Lakes Region draws more than 300 to fundraiser

04-06 Altrusa Taste 3Apr16238098

Debbie and Norman Johnson enjoy dishes from area restaurants at the 26th annual Altrusa Taste of the Lakes Region at Church Landing on Sunday evening.  (Karen Bobotas/for the Laconia Daily Sun)



MEREDITH — More than 300 people attended the 26th Annual Taste of the Lakes Region, held on Sunday at Church Landing in Meredith.

"It was great. Everyone that was there, I didn't hear one negative thing," said Nancy LeRoy, a member of Altrusa Club of Laconia. The event, which invites local restaurants and food companies to bring a sampling of their signature creations, serves as the prime fundraiser for Laconia Altrusa.

About 20 restaurants participated in this year's Taste, and while LeRoy wasn't able to sample everything, items that stood out to her included the shepherd's pie served by the Holy Grail of the Lakes, and the bread pudding brought by Hector's Fine Food & Spirits.

All proceeds from the event will benefit the club's service projects. Altrusa of Laconia offers four scholarships for women: one for a recent Laconia High School graduate, and others designed for adult women who are furthering their education ins business, education or health.

The club also promotes literacy through various avenues. Recent projects include providing bookshelves and books for the HealthFirst office in Laconia, and providing baby book packages for new mothers at LRGH.

LeRoy said she was grateful to all who had a hand in the Taste of the Lakes Region.

"We thank the community and the restaurants, if it wasn't for the restaurants and the people who buy the tickets, we wouldn't be able to do what we do."


Gilford man indicted for raping girlfriend; toddler allegedly was in room at the time


LACONIA — A Belknap County grand jury has indicted a Gilford man on two counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault or forcible rape.

Carroll R. Thompson, 44, formerly of 2652 Lake Shore Road, stands accused of two counts holding down his former girlfriend while in their home and physically forced her to have sex with him on Jan. 20.

According to affidavits and testimony at Thompson's bail hearing, the woman told police that she and her daughter were preparing to move to a different location when the attack happened. She said she tried twice to call the 911 but the call didn't go through.

She also told police the alleged assault took place while her 3-year-old child was in the room. When police arrived, they took the child to a neighbor's home, who told them they heard noises consistent with what she said happened.

Affidavits said the woman told police that she and Thompson had been methamphetamine users but that she had stopped around Christmas of 2015 while Thompson was allegedly still using the drug.

According to the website at the Belknap County House of Corrections, Thompson is being held on $60,000 cash-only bail.

Laconia drug counselor pleads guilty to assault on former patient

LACONIA – A former drug and alcohol counselor who had be charged with having sex with one of his former clients has pleaded guilty to one count of simple assault and agreed to permanently give up his license.

Jay Bernier, whose practice was on 206 Fair Street, was sentenced to 12 months in the Belknap County House of Corrections – all suspended – and has agreed to perform 100 hours of community service.

Bernier had been charged on October of 2015 with two counts of non-aggravated rape after an investigation by the Merrimack County Sheriff Department lead them to charge that he had relations with the woman who he treated in 2014 but who returned to him after a relapse in 2015.

Bernier also agreed to undergo a counseling and treatment and to have a psycho-sexual evaluation. He will be on probation for 12 months.

State law prevents a therapist from entering a relationship with someone who he or she has counseled within one year after undergoing therapy.