Elizabeth Howard — Finding Lonesome Lake

The island of Manhattan is surrounded by water. In the center of the city, in our beloved Central Park, is an 18-acre lake with rowboats, a reservoir we can walk (or run) around, with glorious city landscapes from every angle, and a small pond for sailing model sailboats.

Water sustains us. Perhaps it is why we are drawn to the flow and force of water in nature: Lakes, rivers, streams, bogs, even puddles. As children didn't we all love wading through the random circles of water that appear after a storm, knowing we were in danger of serious parental displeasure for soaking our new shoes through to our socks.

Water, even when it appears still and assumes the characteristic of a mirror in the earliest hours of the dawn, is always in motion and has a rhythm that becomes as meditative as a monk chanting quietly at the beginning of a sitting meditation.

From the short coastline on the Atlantic to the Connecticut Lakes in the northern most tip of the state New Hampshire has bodies of water that contribute to making it the special environment it is. My home in Laconia is just a just a short walk to a beach on Winnisquam Lake. I learned to swim at Forest Lake in the White Mountains, have attempted chilling swims in Echo Lake at the bottom of Cannon Mountain and spent many summers on the water, swimming, boating and even fishing staying with our Uncle Jim and Aunt Barbara's cottage on Merrymeeting Lake. 

Perhaps my favorite is Lonesome Lake, located on a high flat area just south of Cannon Mountain. Getting there is a hike up from Lafayette Place camping grounds on a trail maintained by the Appalachian Mountain Club. Head down, climbing over rocks and around trees, there is something magical about suddenly looking up and seeing the lake, just ahead through the trees. And the relief of being with other hikers after being alone and encountering a large moose in the middle of the trail. Sitting along the shore of Lonesome Lake one is allowed to think, away from technology, the music of an ice-cream truck, sirens of all sorts and the screeching noise created by political campaigns.

A few hours sitting quietly by a lake, pond or river in New Hampshire is restorative for the soul.

Elizabeth Howard's career has intersected journalism, communications and marketing. Her articles have appeared in national and international publications. A Day with Bonefish Joe, her first children's book, has just been published by David R. Godine. She lives in New York City and has a home in Laconia, New Hampshire.

Mardi Gras party at Tavern 27 to help local animal shelter

LACONIA — Tavern 27 is hosting Unleashed: Mardi Gras with a Mission, a Wine and Tapas Tasting to benefit the New Hampshire Humane Society on Tuesday, Feb. 9, from 6 to 8:30 p.m.

The evening will consist of a feast of tapas and wine pairings for party goers to enjoy, local musician Jim Tyrrell playing lively New Orleans-style piano jazz, trivia and games for prizes and, of course, Mardi Gras Party favors and the traditional King Cake.

Louisiana native and chef/co-owner of Tavern 27, Leslie Judice, was born in New Orleans.

"For years I have been trying to come up with an excuse to throw a Mardi Gras party at Tavern 27," states Judice. "When this opportunity came up to support the NH Humane Society and have a Mardi Gras bash at the same time, I couldn't resist-this is perfect!" she exclaimed. "There will be something for everyone to enjoy, food, music and friends for a fantastic cause."

Raymond Simanson Jr., co-owner of Tavern 27, adds, "We are hoping Unleashed: Mardi Gras with a Mission is the beginning of an annual tradition here at Tavern 27 to help to raise funds for the shelter."

Proceeds from the event will benefit the NH Humane Society animal shelter in Laconia. The NH Humane Society is a non-profit that relies on community support because the organization does not receive any state funding, or funding from the national humane society organization. Events like this one help to provide funds for general care of the animals, providing food and other items to necessary to support the animals until they are adopted.

Chef Leslie and her team will be serving New Orleans-inspired cuisine, along with some of Tavern 27's most popular items. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten free options will also be served. There will be several stations paired with a variety of wines including some on the Tavern 27 list and a few new wines to enjoy. Non-alcoholic beverages will be available and are included with the price of admission. The bar will be open for guests that do not enjoy wine.

Tickets for the event are $54  (tax and gratuity not included) in advance and can be purchased at Tavern 27, or online at tavern27.com or nhhumane.org. Purchasing tickets in advanced is suggested as the event is likely to sell out. Dress is casual, though festive purple, green and gold would be appropriate as there will also be a "Mardi Gras Selfie Station." Please note, Tavern 27 will not be open for regular dinner service this evening due to the event. Local businesses wishing to support the event by donating prizes may contact Leslie via e-mail, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by dropping items off at Tavern 27, 2075 Parade Road, Laconia.

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051916 Pitman's to host Australian folk singer Friday

LACONIA — Hailing from the far southwestern corner of Australia, singer-songwriter Lucy Wise will appear at Pitman's Freight Room on Friday at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15.

Wise has delighted audiences across Australia, New Zealand and the UK with her masterful storytelling, intricate ukulele and guitar playing and soulful voice. Drawing inspiration from her background in Appalachian and Celtic folk music, Lucy's songs traverse the landscapes of memory, travel, and human relationships to place.

Boston's Americana Sister Act, Ari & Mia, reference the traditions of Southern and Northeastern fiddle music and the early American songbook to create a realm where their own compositions cross paths with older traditions. Their stylish and sophisticated music honors the sounds of Appalachian cottages, rural dance floors, and urban concert halls. Combine this with their innovative approach to songwriting and the result is a captivating sound. Ari & Mia "blend a traditional rootsy grounding with a clear background of classical training. Doors open at 7 p.m. Pitman's is a BYO venue. For reservations call 527-0043.

05-19 Lucy Wise

Lucy Wise