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Moose are on the loose in New Hampshire!

Spring 2013

Meet the MooseMan, Rick Libbey, and His Moose

Massage — it’s good for you! Chillin’ with my peeps at Newport’s Library Arts Center

Healthy ways to eat out

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contents FEATURES


The MooseMan’s Wildlife Adventures from a Kayak Anyone can take a photo of a moose, but not everyone can tell a story about it like Rick Libbey. By Laura Jean Whitcomb. Photography courtesy of Rick Libbey

44 Listen to the Music

51 Unlimited Access

Whether you need to borrow a book, research a topic or study with friends, local libraries provide the materials — and a community gathering spot — for Kearsarge area residents. By Kristen Senz

58 It’s Good for You

Massage therapy isn’t just a luxury these days. It’s a necessity for many folks with chronic conditions and stressful lives. By Kristen Senz


51 2

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Rob Strong

Sherman the Tank Photograph by Rick Libbey

Andover, N.H., photographer Rick Libbey captured this shot at dusk in northern Maine. Libbey was paddling along quietly in his kayak and heard the familiar slashing of a moose feeding and thought it was a cow (female) moose by the sounds he heard. When he rounded the bend in the river, this enormous bull was feeding. This shot is the first click when the bull finally realized he was there. See more of Rick Libbey’s photos at

Douglas K. Hill

The Kearsarge hills are alive with the sound of music. Country, jazz, folk, African drum music — you name the genre and you can find it here in the Sunapee area of New Hampshire. By Barbra Alan, Merry Armentrout, Kristen Senz and Laura Jean Whitcomb


16 Family: Chillin’ with My Peeps

Yes, there are an infinite number of puns on the word “peep”, according to the Library Arts Center in Newport. By Laura Jean Whitcomb, photos courtesy of the Library Arts Center



Business: Bluewater Farm Lakeside Lodge and Cottages Deb Brower’s dream of a perfect setting for home and work came together on Bradley Lake in Andover. By L. B. Chase

30 Community: Building a Bridge to

Sunapee’s Future For residents of Sunapee, preserving the town’s rich history is as important as promoting its promising future. By Barbra Alan

Kevin Davis


Nutrition: Delicious, Nutritious Dining Out Does Exist What does a dietician suggest for healthier eating out? Five simple strategies will help you stay on course. By Hope Damon


Home is where the boat is for David and Betty Erickson. In fact, the boat is docked, year round, inside their home in Georges Mills. By Laura Halkenhauser Guion

37 Eat: Spices from Allspice to Za’atar

A stroll through the spice aisle in a grocery store does nothing to conjure up the history and mystery of spices. But a visit Claremont Spice & Dry Goods does. By Laura Jean Whitcomb

Amy J. Putnam

34 At Home: Ship of Dreams



Henry Homeyer

Nonprofit: Thank You for Making a Difference The Women Who Make A Difference award recognizes women who give back, and raises money for kids in need. By Laura Halkenhauser Guion

42 Let’s Go Calendar

A few fun things to do this spring. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


editor’s letter Hello friends, Ralph, the Kearsarge Magazine

when dining out. A profile of five local massage therapists

office dog, is here. He’s cer-

— each with their own area of expertise — might inspire

tainly earning his name (Wreck

you to take some time out for some healing bodywork.

It Ralph), but it’s nice to have

Or you could just gaze in awe at the moose photos by my

the distraction (sometimes). I

friend, Rick Libbey, also known as the MooseMan.

can move away from the computer screen for a few rounds of “What’s in your mouth, Ralph? Drop it!” But it’s even nicer to take him for walks at lunch time. A little fresh air and exercise does a body good. Maybe the spring issue of Kearsarge Magazine will help you do the same?

Enjoy your spring, folks, and if you’re in need of some puppy love, please send me an email. I’ll deliver a happy black Lab so you can snuggle for a few minutes. Just make sure you pick up the floor; otherwise Ralph will be glad to do it for you!

Nutritionist Hope Damon helps you make healthy choices Laura Jean Whitcomb Editor

Follow us on: Kearsarge Magazine @KearsargeMag


Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

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Rediscover your hometown with Kearsarge Magazine™ You may have lived in the big city, overseas, or maybe you’ve lived here all your life. Either way, you know there’s something special about the Lake Sunapee/Kearsarge/Concord area of New Hampshire. And every page of award-winning Kearsarge Magazine will remind you why you love it here.

P.O. Box 1482 Grantham, NH 03753 Phone/fax: (603) 863-7048 E-mail: Web: Editor Art Director Ad Sales Ad Production Circulation Director Accounting

Laura Jean Whitcomb Laura Osborn Mark Cookson, Laura H. Guion Mark Cookson, Sierra Willenburg Amy Davis Sandi Raeuchle

Kearsarge Magazine™ is published quarterly in February, May, August and November. © 2013 by Kearsarge Magazine, LLC. All photographs and articles © 2013 by the photographer or writer unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved. Except for one-time personal use, no part of any online content or issue may be reproduced by any mechanical, photographic or electronic process, nor may it be stored in a retrieval system, transmitted or otherwise copied for public or private use without written permission of the copyright owner.

Subscriptions Rediscover your hometown by subscribing to Kearsarge Magazine™. Four issues a year will be delivered right to your door for $15. Subscribe online at www.kearsargemagazine. com or send a check (with your name and mailing address) to P.O. Box 1482, Grantham, NH 03753. Digital subscriptions are also available online.

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The MooseMan’s Wildlife Adventures from a Kayak

Anyone can take a photo of a moose, but not everyone can tell a story about it like Rick Libbey. by Laura Jean Whitcomb photography courtesy of Rick Libbey

Man on a mission: Photographer Rick Libbey waits for a visit from his moose friends in his Old Town kayak. Right: Libbey crossed the river in the early morning and waited for this shot. “I never heard a sound, never heard a twig snap, then he silently appeared,” Libbey recalls. “The moment only lasted about three seconds. He did not run off; he just quietly turned away and was gone like a ghost.”


Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

R ick Libbey has his feet on the floor at 4 a.m.

It’s his goal to be in the forests of Maine, or in the marshes of New Hampshire, by 5 a.m. Admittedly, he’s a morning person, but the MooseMan, as Libbey is called, wants to assess the situation (the light, the clouds) and make noise — get his kayak loaded and into the water — before the moose make their appearance. It’s Libbey’s passion, and now his full-time job as the photographer for MooseMan Nature Photos (, to photograph wild animals in their natural habitat and share the results with others. “I love to see someone’s eyes get twice as wide when they see one of my photos,” says Libbey. “I take pride that they are seeing something that they wouldn’t usually get to see. I get to share my world with them.” › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


A mature bull in the golden late afternoon light 8

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Libbey named this giant moose Mr. Ed.

The birthday gift If you read Libbey’s first book, Ricky & the Moose: The Story of the MooseMan published in 2008, you’ll know that he spent much of his youth in the woods exploring nature. Then his father gave him the best birthday gift ever when he was 10: a camera. Libbey learned by doing, and capturing nature in photographs quickly became his hobby. In 1990 Libbey moved from Massachusetts to Andover, N.H. By day, he worked at a natural foods store in New London. But he spent his pre-dawn mornings and free weekends driving on logging roads to get to the tiny New Hampshire town of Odell (population: four), kayaking on remote lakes in Maine, or scouting out marshes and bogs in the Kearsarge area. After 15 years in retail, just

when the economy is at its lowest point, what does he do? Take the leap to running his own business, MooseMan Nature Photos, full time in 2007. “Even in this economy, it is amazing how good we are doing. People don’t have to have wildlife photos — it’s a luxury — but people are buying products both small and large,” says Libbey. MooseMan offers note cards, coasters, key chains, magnets and stickers from his souvenir line, as well as matted or framed photos from an extensive line of wildlife photos — from moose to loons to bears. Libbey and his wife, Donna, attend 40 events — craft fairs, shows, farmers’ markets, art shows, old home days, harvest festivals and apple festivals — each year to showcase MooseMan products.

But beyond the photos, Libbey is promoting a way of life — taking time out of a busy schedule to quietly observe and absorb nature and all its beauty. He speaks at schools, day care centers, libraries, camera clubs and boys camps, to name a few. He works with local businesses, like Children’s Dentistry of the Lakes Region, to display large canvases of MooseMan wildlife photos in the waiting area for families to enjoy. But the growth of a part-time hobby into a full-time career is not the most exciting part of Libbey’s story. It’s his method. It’s his mission. And it’s the moose.

Enjoy the experience Anyone can take a photo of a moose. There are cell phones, iPhones, iPods and a variety of devices that turn the average › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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bystander into an on-the-scene photojournalist. at The Lyme Inn But Libbey has stories. Stories for a dining experience about Bill the Bull, Big Boy, Pot Belly that will delight. and her baby, Sweet Pea. And he includes those stories — which he Our Tavern is open calls “MooseMan Moments” — on Wednesday through Sunday the back of every photo. You might 5 to 10 pm and for flip over a print to read a memory of Sunday brunch Al Lareau, Libbey’s friend and busi11:30 to 2:30 pm. ness partner, who provided business advice and his backyard bear photos to Libbey’s wholesale business in the early days. Or you might see the photo through Libbey’s eyes: “June 1984. Just before dusk on a remote lake in Maine: sitting in a canoe near the outlet at the far end of the lake. In front of me in various spots from 15 feet to 100 feet away were 11 beautiful moose….All within a hundred feet of Accommodations K Libations K Victuals me! It was a moment I'll never forget!” 1 Market Street, Lyme, New Hampshire You are not just purchasing a photo; you’re purchasing an experience. Hearing Libbey talk about Big Boy, a bull he has tracked for nine years, just adds to the amazingness of the photograph. He’s watched Big Boy grow up, finding him in the  spring of 2003 nearly dead from  winter weight loss to seeing him years  later as the dominant bull in his area;  from “meek to mighty” as Libbey  describes. He’s documented three  generations of a moose family: Pot   Belly, her daughter and her grandson. He’s held a sedated black bear     as the Maine Department of Wildlife

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Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Milkdud is a Second Chance Wildlife cub

transports it to a new home. Those stories are on the back of each and every photo, and, Libbey hopes, will eventually make their way into a book. “I started a journal in 2002, one year before the MooseMan company was formed,” says Libbey. “That’s 10 years with a journal, with every single moose encounter documented. I’ve had 1,400 moose encounters as of July 2012.”

A view from the lake It’s not a simple task to get such great photos. Libbey has one hard and fast rule that has been key to his success: He explores and shoots by kayak. “I can explore. I can cover ground. I can cover the lake. I can get where I need to be,” he explains. Years of shooting from a kayak means that Libbey has his tricks. “I use a monopod, one post, to steady my gear,” he says. “A tripod won’t fit in the kayak.” He lines the bottom of the kayak — the shortest, widest kayak he can find — with a beach towel to protect his cameras (two Nikon D300s and one Nikon D800). He’s padded his special lightweight paddle, so he can set them down without a › › › › ›

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sound. And although it’s hot in June and July (when he typically shoots), Libbey still wears full camouflage: gloves, face mask, hat, shirt, even the kayak. Why? “I’m blending into the shoreline as I am searching,” he says. Prep work completed, Libbey gets in the kayak, quietly pushes off from the shore, and waits to hear the sound of water. “Nine out of 10 moose are all doing the same thing: they are eating. And where are they eating? In the water,” he says. “I find most by sound, rather than by sight. When a bull lifts his head up out of the water, the antlers create a pouring sound, like a bucket of water pouring. You’ll hear a dripping sound for a cow moose with no antlers. When I hear the pouring, MooseMan is much more excited.”

A grown up Sweet Pea with her baby, Half Pint

Moose and loons and bears (oh my) Libbey is shooting about 10 percent of the time (100 percent of the time in May, June and July). The rest of his time is spent speaking (24 times a year); framing (he does all his own framing, at least two days a week); and selling (online and at shows from late June to the second week of December). Oh, and don’t forget looking through his photos to find “the one.” “In two weeks, on my annual moose trek in July, I usually shoot 3,000 to 4,000 frames,” he says. “I look for 200 to begin the culling process, and end up with 10 or 12 photos.” Moose are still the top-selling photos, but bears, including Lareau’s original bear photos, account for 40 percent of sales. It’s why Libbey donates 20 percent of his sales to Second Chance Wildlife (www., a rehabilitation site for orphaned black bears run by Dawn Brown in New Sharon, Maine. “She has five-acre enclosures on 100 acres in the wild,” says Libbey. “There are seven bears there now, cubs whose mother has been killed or 12

Water cascades off the antlers of a feeding moose, nicknamed The Boss. Libbey used a super telephoto with 630mm lens to get this photo.

abandoned them. It’s nice to know that I’m making a difference for a tiny cub — and making a difference in Dawn’s life, who did not want to open the facility up to visitors.” Libbey’s positive, can-do attitude and generous spirit make a difference to others, from the kids in the classroom to the people in line at his booth at the annual moose festival in Canaan, Vt. “There may be a line of 10 people long, but I’ll never rush a person. I want to make them feel completely comfortable,” he says. “They’re not just buying a photo; they’re buying an experience. I’m not

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

just processing a payment; I’m telling a story. Even if they don’t buy, I get excited if they had a nice time visiting my booth. I’ve changed their day.” He pauses. “I’m very grateful to be able to do this. It wasn’t easy to get here, but I’m living the dream.” Laura Jean Whitcomb has been proud to call Rick Libbey her friend since his days at the natural food store in New London. His smiling face and kind words have always inspired her to continue to do what she loves — which is write.

Sweet Pea, as a calf, raises her nose to catch a scent in the air. It was Libbey's first close-up encounter with a cow and calf. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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Check our menu out | “like” us on Facebook, too! • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine



people, places and things

Chillin’ with My Peeps There are an infinite number of puns on the word “peep”, according to the Library Arts Center in Newport. by Laura Jean Whitcomb photos courtesy of the Library Arts Center


ome people like to eat peeps right out of the package. Others like to remove the plastic wrapper and let their peeps harden a bit for a chewier treat. Other folks like to create dioramas with the bunny and chick-shaped sugar-coated marshmallows. That is what the Library Arts Center in Newport was hoping when they kicked off their first annual Peeps Diorama Contest in April 2012. Similar contests have been sweeping the nation, with popular contests hosted by the Washington Post and the Denver Post. The Library Arts Center’s contest, however, is the first of its kind in the Kearsarge/Upper Valley region. “Too often, we forget that art is for everyone, and that art can be fun and even silly!” says Kate Niboli, executive director of the Library Arts Center, a nonprofit art gallery and studio located at 58 North Main

Get Your Peeps Peep-le of all ages are invited to create a diorama of any size featuring Peeps bunnies and chicks as the characters. Peeps may be melted, squished and manipulated in other innovative ways to create unique dioramas with scenes inspired by recent news stories, celebrities, books or movies. Entry forms are available at There is a $5 fee to enter.


Jackson Scheele of Sunapee won first place in the children’s category for “The Peep Gods”.

Street in Newport. You can certainly get creative with peeps; a quick Google search will uncover dioramas with celebrities, such as Elvis Presley or Justin Beiber (also known in marshmallowspeak as Elvis “Peep”ley & Justin “Peep”er). Themes include current

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

events (Occupy Wall Street with “Power to the Peep-le” signs), movie spoofs (Reservoir Peeps), tributes to classic books (Goodnight, Peep or Where the Wild Peeps Are) and trends (Angry Peeps). “The Peeps diorama contest got so many people (many of › › › › ›

Lynn, Brooke and Rette Solomon of Wilmot created a diorama of an award ceremony.

Sally Hague of Newport with her Best in Peeps award

The Phillie’s Stadium is packed with fans, who wait in anticipation for the next batter. (The bases are loaded!) • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


whom don’t usually consider themselves creative, much less artists) to take part in a fun, funny and, most importantly, nonthreatening art project,” says Niboli. “People who wouldn’t dream of picking up a paint brush spent hours working on hilarious, detailed Peeps dioramas — and, in the end, trained artists, children, families, community members of all walks of life entered the contest, filling the gallery with creativity and merriment which inspired and lifted the spirits of hundreds of gallery visitors.” This year, the Peeps Party will be held on Friday, March 22 from 5 to 7 p.m. You can see the dioramas (last year there were 88) and enjoy silver platters of Peeps being passed out as refreshment, Peeps punch, a Peeps marshmallow roast in the parking lot — and complimentary toothbrushes. If you miss the awards ceremony, the Peeps Dioramas will be on display during regular gallery hours for a limited time. “Due to the popularity of the event last year, we have lengthened the display to last over a week starting with the Peeps Party and ending on Easter’s Eve!” says Niboli.

“Peter Peeper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peepers” by Heidi Bartlett of Newport

Laura Jean Whitcomb created a “Peeps in Space” diorama last year with help from her son, Henry.

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Northern New England Repertory Theatre Company presents



by Henrik Ibsen Translated by Nicholas Rudall Sawyer Center Theater Colby-Sawyer College New London, NH

Adults: $28 Students: $10 Group rates available

8 PM: May 30, 31, June 1 2 PM: June 2 8 PM: June 6, 7, 8

Box Office (opens April 1): Local: 603-526-4112 Toll-free: 1-855-849-2086 Tatewell Gallery, Mon-Sat, 10-5 Online at At the Theater for 2 hours before curtain

“Hedda Gabler (Rudall, trans.)” is produced by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.


Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Staging the Best of the Classics

people, places and things


Bluewater Farm Lakeside Lodge and Cottages Deb Brower’s dream of a perfect setting for home and work came together on Bradley Lake in Andover.

by L. B. Chase

eb Brower is explaining why she’s running a hospitality business on Bradley Lake in Andover instead of living comfortably in her native suburban Connecticut. “Years ago in a ‘visioning exercise’, I was asked to daydream about the perfect setting to live and work,” she says. “When I first saw this place, it matched exactly the image I had created in my mind.” At the time, two of her four children were boarding students at Proctor Academy, also in Andover. The thought that she could live in an ideal spot, earn a living, and be close to her kids was compelling. In 2005, she bought what was once known as Camp Marlyn,

photos courtesy of L. B. Chase/Bluewater Farm


Deb Brower sits inside the main lodge at Bluewater Farm.

a former summer camp for girls, and later as the Owl’s Nest, a lodge and conference center. The 236-acre property came with a spacious main lodge, horse barn, three guest cabins, a dozen rental residences, several disused structures, 1,500 feet of waterfront, an outdoor chapel, and commanding views of Mount Kearsarge and the 165-acre Bradley Lake.

Although she had no experience in the hospitality industry, Brower got to work immediately, renaming the place Bluewater Farm (for the deep blue of Bradley Lake), keeping the facilities open for previously made reservations, and beginning a series of ongoing renovations. The whiteboard on the wall shows her bookings. “2012 was pretty good,” she says. “We finally hit the breakeven point” — the point where all expenses are covered by income from guests and the nine active rental units on the property. Bookings included 17 wedding parties, 10 church groups, › › › › ›

The lodge shines under a starry summer sky. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


A view of Bradley Lake from a lodge porch

six family reunions, five corporate or educational work retreats, and assorted other vacationers. Groups booking the main lodge get an industrial strength kitchen, expansive porches overlooking the lake, sleeping for up to 40, and a great room with a huge stone fireplace. Users of smaller cabins get their own small kitchens, lake views and a fair

amount of seclusion. All get swimming and boating privileges (although outboard motors are not provided or encouraged). With seven years of hospitality experience now behind her, Brower, 55, allows that her operation is running fairly smoothly. It wasn’t always that way, she admits. There were renovation issues, deed issues, financing issues, staffing issues, guest issues, tenant issues, as well as the normal glitches of any business. Helping Brower overcome the challenges has been, as she puts it, “a wonderfully supportive

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A bride and groom share a quiet moment at the outdoor chapel.

local community, which we’ve absolutely come to depend on to help respond to our guests’ needs.” Chief among the responders are two full-time employees: Billy Sanborn, the grounds and buildings specialist, and Jackie Adams, the “everythingelse-you-name-it” specialist. Other local residents work part-time when needed. With the variety of reasons why folks come — and return — to Bluewater Farm, it’s no surprise that guest stories abound. There’s the one about the bride-to-be who decided she couldn’t go through with the ceremony — then stayed for a weekend of partying with the other guests; the group that spent the weekend attacking the neighboring cabins with a potato gun (go ahead and Google it); the large group that mysteriously up and left in the middle of the night, abandoning most of their belongings; the wedding party that got conveyed to the outdoor chapel in the bucket of a front loader when Tropical Storm Irene washed out the road. “I could go on,” Brower says.

What’s the main attraction? Brower chooses four words: relaxation, beauty, tranquility and simplicity. In addition to the lake and mountain views, there’s also that outdoor chapel, used primarily for weddings and individual contemplation. Miles of nearby trails — old logging and carriage roads among them — lead past abandoned cellar holes, beaver dams and stone walls. And there’s the loon pair that returns to the lake every spring and almost always produces a chick or two. Some say their calls alone are worth the visit, Brower says. Also: No programmed events, no in-room radios or televisions, no room telephones, no on-premises restaurant, no entertainment (unless you bring it yourselves). “What we provide is a place for people to connect with their family, their friends, themselves and nature without all the electronic and worldly distractions,” says Brower. (In a concession to the Information Age, though, the main lodge recently gained Wi-Fi Internet connectivity with coverage that sometimes extends out to a cabin or two. Cell phone connectivity is a sometime thing as well.) As Brower writes on Bluewater Farm’s website ( “Bluewater Farm is my kind of place: peaceful, quiet and beautiful. I hope it’s your kind of place, too.” And, as she puts it, “A daydream literally come true.” L. B. Chase is a recovering corporate American and former New Jersey resident who now, thankfully, lives in Andover.

A family reunion photo in the main lodge

Linking to the Community better, partly to say thank you for “Santa Claus is coming to their support, partly to show folks Bluewater Farm!” the poster in the what’s happening at her place. local mini-mart announces. “All “When I was closing on the welcome!” property,” she says, “there were Sure enough, on a December rumors that the new owner was Sunday evening, the bearded old planning to turn it into a gated comgentleman appears in the main lodge before a crowd of local kids and their parents. He listens to the kids’ wish lists, poses for pictures, and distributes gifts while the parents sip cider and mingle. Part of Deb Brower’s dream was being part of a small-town community. To that end, she regularly invites local residents up to the lodge, not just to visit with Santa, but Deb Brower (behind Santa) and co-workers at the also to hear talks by visiting 2012 Christmas party speakers (humorist Rebecca Rule, loon expert Harry Vogel); munity, or a major subdivision, or hosts an annual dinner party for a Best Western. That was never the the folks who summer on the lake; intent, and it never will be as long as and offers free use of the lodge I’m here. I like things pretty much for educational classes and other just as they are. And I enjoy other meetings. people’s enjoyment of this beautiful spot.” The outreach, she says, is done – L. B. Chase partly to get to know her neighbors • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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Lebanon, NH • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


New London

people, places and things

Delicious, Nutritious Dining Out Does Exist by Hope Damon photography by Kevin Davis


mericans love to eat out — we spend nearly half of our food dollars on food prepared away from home. Most of us eat at least one third of our calories from restaurant and takeout foods. Dashboard dining — eating in the car — is common. We appreciate the spontaneous, casual lifestyle associated with eating out. But people generally eat more when eating out; in fact, children consume almost twice as many calories when they eat a meal in a restaurant than they do at home. Even though we eat out frequently, our attitudes suggest we think of eating out as a special occasion, thus justifying food choices that are richer and less nutritious than those we might eat at home. What does a dietitian suggest for healthier eating out?

Strategy #1: Pack a positive attitude about choosing food thoughtfully. Decide if this particular meal is truly a special occasion — or perhaps it is the need for convenience, lack of planning, an impulse or socializing that has you reading the restaurant menu again. Calmly remind yourself that you can eat healthy anywhere (with thought and effort) and you will feel good about it. Appreciate that you are not working in the kitchen, you do not have to do the dishes, the server is pleasant, and the atmosphere is fun. It is not only the food that makes eating out special.

Strategy #2: Think ahead.

Choose restaurants with a variety of options. It helps to look at the menu online before you go, and


Hope Damon enjoys a healthy meal at a local restaurant.

many restaurants now have nutrition information available. While it is not necessary to count every last calorie, carb or fat gram, it can be helpful to compare some of your favorite choices. You may be surprised at the numbers and decide that some items are not worth the calorie content. Or

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

you may notice healthier items that are worth considering.

Strategy #3: Choose your food mindfully. People who practice mindful eating regularly become better at eating selectively rather than

being a member of the “clean plate club”. Mindful eating is becoming a buzzword in the nutrition world. Simply, it means making deliberate food choices — not necessarily only healthy foods but items you think are worth it to you — then eating with thoughtful attention to savor every bite. This usually means eating slower and with less distraction — not so easy in a busy restaurant, but extremely helpful to moderate your intake. Perhaps you love fried fish. You might mindfully decide that the fish is worth the calorie and fat content, but you will save ordering fries for another time. Or you acknowledge that you almost always have dessert, even if you are already full, so you order a lighter main meal to allow for dessert.

Strategy #4: How much is enough?

How much is enough? A “portion” is how much food you choose to eat. A “serving” is a standard amount set by the FDA. Restaurant portion sizes are easily double, often triple, the suggested serving sizes. Consider that the chef serves the same size meal to everyone who orders it — but we certainly do not all need the same amount of food! Recently I was looking at the nutrition info for a franchise casual dining restaurant. At first, I thought the numbers were fairly moderate — until I realized they were listed for half the amount in an order! Simple approaches to limiting your portions include sharing entrees or desserts, requesting extra vegetables (perhaps substituting them for fried sides), and considering that an appetizer may well be plenty for a dinner entrée.

Strategy #5: Have it your way.

Take your time looking at your menu options, no matter how rushed you feel or how hectic the restaurant is. Most restaurants will accommodate reasonable requests, such as a side order of vegetables instead of the fat-laden white carbs. Often there is a bean or whole grain pilaf with a heavier meat that you could request to have with the fish or chicken entrees. It doesn’t hurt to ask!

Strategy #6: Liquid calories count!

Beverages can considerably increase the empty calorie content of meals. Accompany every meal with water so you quench your thirst with that good, simple taste. Then decide how much of the other beverages you really value. I believe that food is one of life’s greatest pleasures. I also believe that taking good care of our bodies improves quality of life and is worth the effort. So the balance achieved by eating mindfully, enjoying every bite we have, and valuing healthy eating works for both health and pleasure. Good luck! Hope Damon, RD, LD, CDE provides nutrition counseling with humor and kindness at The Nutrition Counseling Center in New London, N.H. She enjoys mindfully eating everything! Kevin Davis shoots people for a living, but only with his camera. You can see more of his work at www.kevin

Food Court S.O.S. If you’re on the road all day or spending the day shopping, eat a breakfast that includes protein and wholegrain before you go. A homemade egg sandwich on whole wheat toast with fresh spinach or sliced tomato is quick and filling. Or a plain Greek yogurt with added fresh fruit and slivered nuts offers good staying power. Then go to lunch before you are too tired to think straight! Better options: thin crust veggie pizza; basic (not grilled but toasted) sandwiches (be aware of the size and perhaps share), smaller salads with low fat dressings and caution about richer ingredients (cheese really isn’t your best friend); broth-based soups like vegetable, minestrone, beef barley, chicken and rice or a filling split pea, black bean or lentil soup. Look for healthy menu symbols that cue you to smaller, leaner items. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Give us your best shot! Enter Kearsarge Magazine’s First Annual Photo Contest! Submit a digital photo in one of three categories (people, places or things). Readers will pick their favorite, and a panel of judges will pick their favorite as well as a grand prize winner. There is no fee to enter the contest, so why don’t you give it a try? The contest begins Dec. 1, 2012, at 12:01 a.m. and ends April 1, 2013, at 9 a.m.

HOW TO ENTER 1. Visit our website for rules. 2. Email your entry to Be sure to include your name, city and state, and information about the photograph (see rules for details). 3. The contest begins Dec. 1, 2012, at 12:01 a.m. and ends April 1, 2013, at 9 a.m. Good luck! r Sponso


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Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •


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To learn more and to receive our e-newsletter Discover Health, visit • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine



people, places and things

Building a Bridge to the Future by Barbra Alan photography by Gary Summerton


urturing the roots of their community is a mission Project Sunapee takes to heart. Comprised of community members, Project Sunapee is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit established in 2010 to support and encourage Sunapee’s economic vitality and education, cultural and historic assets, scenic landscapes, and social well being. “The opportunity for a nonprofit in our small town was apparent,” says Project Sunapee member Donna Gazelle. “We were encouraged to form an organization that would help match volunteer efforts with community needs.” “We don’t necessarily initiate projects,” adds Barbara Sullivan, current chairman of Project Sunapee. “Rather, we assist and facilitate them.”

Making a real difference Like the other members of Project Sunapee, Gazelle and Sullivan share a love of community and a passion for giving back. “In a previous life, I worked with cultural

Learn More Learn more at


There was a big turnout for the 2012 Haunted Harbor Halloween.

nonprofits,” says Gazelle, whose connection to Sunapee dates back to 1977, when she and her husband purchased property and a business in town shortly after their son entered Dartmouth College. After years of seasonal residency, they’ve happily called Sunapee home since 2000. “Sunapee is a town with soul. I love the peaceful beauty and the diversity of people who live here,” she says. “We can’t imagine a better place to live.” Barbara Sullivan, who owns and operates Prospect Hill Antiques with her husband, also came to Sunapee in 1977 to raise a family. “We just fell in love with the town,” she says. Sullivan has been involved in her community as a Girl Scout

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

River Fest is another successful Sunapee event.

troop leader, originator of the annual Teddy Bear Picnic, and as a member of the Sunapee Harbor Riverway,

which seeks to preserve and enhance the village of Sunapee. “I’ve always been involved in the community.” Project Sunapee’s board of directors has organized a coalition of community business partners and scores of volunteers and friends to make a real difference in the community. In just two years, they have created a program that brings community members into schools to assist with reading to young children, hanging art shows, lecturing junior civics classes on topics such as government and economics, and more. The group has supported the Sunapee Food Pantry, organized the “Imagine Sunapee 2020” information forum, and hosted community events such as the 2012 Haunted Harbor Halloween, which was attended by more than 800 trick-or-treaters.

Walk across the river

relocate it — Dover would consider will bring so much to the commuits proposal. After forming a connity in which they live. Aside from sortium of community groups to asadding to the beauty and charm that sess the feasibility of acquiring and the harbor is already famous for, the installing Dover’s bridge, and tapbridge will link the harbor to the ping Project Sunapee to be the fiscal parks along the Sugar River, provide agents for the endeavor, Sunapee access to parking and landmark officials submitted a proposal. buildings, provide tangible eco“Everybody was excited about nomic benefits to local businesses, it,” recalls Sullivan. and encourage revitalization of the But then, a setback: the city village center. “This is a bridge to of Dover decided to relocate the someplace very special…Sunapee’s bridge within Dover. For Sunapee, future,” says Gazelle. however, there was no turning back Step into the past from the momentum and exciteThe bridge is also drawing atment the Dover bridge proposal had tention to another important › › › › › created. The town decided to get quotes on building its own bridge and, to everyone’s delight and relief, found the cost comparable to moving, adapting and installing the Dover Bridge. Thanks to Project Sunapee’s fundraising efforts, and the generous donations of materials, equipment and labor from local contractors, the bridge will not cost A conceptual sketch of the pedestrian covered bridge taxpayers a penny — and it crossing the Sugar River

One of Project Sunapee’s higher profile initiatives is raising funds and awareness for a covered pedestrian footbridge to span the Sugar River and provide greater access to the many attractions around Sunapee Harbor. In January 2011, Sunapee town officials learned that the city of Dover was looking to replace its 15-year-old covered pedestrian footbridge with a new vehicular bridge, and make the footbridge available to another town. If Sunapee could show it had a well-planned, qualified site for the bridge — and Donna Nashawaty, Sunapee town manager, (left) and Barbara Sullivan of Project Sunapee proudly display a model of the bridge the means to

in the Sunapee Town Hall. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

The Primary Care Provider For Your Automotive Needs structure in town, the Harbor House Livery. Since the late 1800s, the building has served Sunapee as a stable, a venue for theatrical performances, a town hall, courthouse, police department, social hall and thrift shop. The livery is the only structure in the country that contains a circular horse ramp from the ground floor stables up to the Main Street entrance where the horses were hitched to fire wagons. The Harbor House Livery was named to the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance’s “Seven to Save” list in 2008 and is recognized on the New Hampshire Registry of Historic Places. While it’s too soon to tell how the new bridge will enhance efforts to save the livery, Sullivan says, “When you cross the bridge, you’ll see the livery as you’ve never seen it before, and this could lead to more people becoming interested in preserving it. It’s certainly a great first step.”

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Barbra Alan is a freelance writer in Alexandria, N.H. Gary Summerton lives in Sunapee with his wife, Cheryl, and his children, Cameron and Morgan. Gary is the owner of Gary Summerton Photography, specializing in portraits, weddings and commercial assignments. You can visit his web site at • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Georges Mills

people, places and things

Ship of Dreams by Laura Halkenhauser Guion photography by Kevin Davis


to be happy about making the Otter Pond camp her full-time home while her soon-to-be Merchant Marine husband was gallivanting the globe. Until she met the neighbors, Jim and Cindy Currier. The Curriers plus the Ericksons has equaled a friendship that has anchored itself in many ways, including the renovation of the Erickson’s domain. The two couples have spent countless hours together, many times on the Currier’s pontoon boat for cocktails. That is where the marinestyle renovation brainstorm — a bar shaped like a boat — was born. “We always thought of the counter area as a place to hang out since most people hang out in the kitchen,” says Betty, “so why not make it large enough to seat more people?” Jim, a former industrial arts teacher in Newport, conferred with local boat building professional, Bo Mueller, to find out how to design a wooden Criss Craft hull. Jim drew The Chill Bar features authentic boat gear up the

ome is where the boat is. Or is it “the boat is where the home is”? For David and Betty Erickson, the boat is docked, year round, inside their home in the village of Georges Mills. As with any a good tale, the background helps tell the story. David, originally from the Midwest, graduated from the Mass Maritime Academy in Buzzards Bay, Mass. Soon thereafter, he met Betty from Boston. They purchased a small summer cottage on Otter Pond in 1973. Betty — a quick-witted, quicktalking mathematician — calculated pretty quickly that she wasn’t going

such as a great brass bell, a flag on the aft, and a clinometer. 34

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

plans and then went about building “a labor of love”, which took three to four years (an estimated 400 hours of time) in his garage. Once nearly complete, the rig was brought in through the side doors of the Erickson’s home in two parts. After assembly and a lot of sanding, the counter, made of cherry and maple, was treated with epoxy to achieve a bar top with a high sheen. The hull is a cherry facade over a thick spruce frame. Named for the last ship that David captained, the “Chill Bar” of

Belly up to the bar: David and Betty Erickson welcome friends to their home in Georges Mills.

Otter Pond is anchored by rope to a support beam front and center of the Erickson’s open concept home. To help chart their waters is a working bow light indicating port and starboard. If the 12 seats around the hull are filled with a crew of friends, the Ericksons keep all on a good course — making sure that the crew is staying level by checking the clinometers (a gauge that shows any list level) and ringing a great brass bell, straight off a scrapped ship, to keep those at the Chill Bar ship shape.

“We just love being able to look at everyone when they are at the bar,” says Betty. “We think people feel more connected.” The Erickson’s home has navigated many renovations under the watchful eye of architect Harry Seidel of Newbury. What once was a summer camp is now a full-time home co-captained by two best mates.

Seaplane on Otter Pond Betty taught math in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, serving as the mathematics coordinator for Kearsarge Middle School until 2006. Prior to that, Betty’s career was at Keene State College — quite a distance from Georges Mills for a daily commute. After joking that she should fly a plane to cut down on the drive, Betty did just that. She got her pilot’s license and then David followed suit. Their seaplane is docked on Otter Pond. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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people, places and things


Spices from Aleppo to Za’atar by Laura Jean Whitcomb photography by Amy J. Putnam


nce upon a time, spices were more valuable than money. (In 1500s England “peppercorn rents” were a way of doing business.) They perfumed rooms (kings would have rooms strewn with fresh rosemary), they healed the sick (nutmeg was thought to be a miracle cure for the plague), and they were essential for embalming (cassia and cinnamon fetched a high price in ancient Egypt). But a stroll through the spice aisle in a grocery store does nothing to conjure up the history and mystery of spices, unless, of course you visit Claremont Spice & Dry Goods. David and Ingrid Lucier opened the shop on Tremont Street in December 2011. David’s background is diverse — from running an industrial service division for a Maryland electrical contractor to designing solar arrays, with a few detours into municipal

Claremont Spice & Dry Goods owners Ingrid and David Lucier

recycling and pharmaceutical manufacturing — but the difficulty of buying fresh spices brought him to his current endeavor. “We were frustrated buying spices, with high prices and varying quality,” he says. “We researched wholesalers in New England, and found we would be able to offer high quality spices at an affordable price. We stock more than 150 kinds and grinds of spices from aleppo to za’atar as well as flavored sea salts, coffee, tea, hot sauces, local honey and There is an amazing variety of spices at Claremont Spice & maple products.” Dry Goods

In the colder months, baking spices like allspice, cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg are the best sellers. In the warmer months, barbecue spices — like roasted garlic powder and smoked, sweet Hungarian paprika — for rubs and blends “are a big hit with the grilling public. We also carry a whole line of barbecue blends, as well as locally produced barbecue sauces, like Richards from St. Albans, Vt., and Chubby’s from Bernardston, Mass. We carry 15 dry barbecue blends, including a nice range of five organic and organic no-salt blends,” Lucier says. “We have Saigon Cinnamon that is one of our best selling spices regardless of season.” ››››› • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Although it sounds like you’d have to take out a mortgage to buy fresh Saigon Cinnamon (imported from Vietnam and considered to be the best cinnamon in the world based on its high concentration of oil), Claremont Spice & Dry Goods packages spices in smaller quantities for the home cook. “Our prices are quite affordable,” says Lucier. “We prepackage our spices in smaller quantities of

as little as a 1/4 ounce in some cases, so you can buy what you need for the short term. We also provide larger sizes for restaurants.” And these spices are fresh. “We don’t keep large inventories; we order weekly or more often as needed so that we get the freshest, highest quality spices possible,” he says. “All of the spices are dated to allow the buyer to keep track of the age of their spices. We also only hold spices on the shelves for three months. After that, if they are not sold they are distributed to charities. Recently a quantity was given to the Claremont Kiwanis Club and taken via rented truck for Hurricane Sandy relief in New Jersey.” The move from central Maryland to Claremont has been a big change,

Enjoy the Aroma Visit Claremont Spice & Dry Goods at 10 Tremont Street in Claremont. They are open Wednesday to Saturday, from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. but the Luciers are enjoying a different pace of life. “If you work for a large company nowadays you seem to be essentially married to it,” he says. “Besides, it is great to be able to talk and joke with people, and be a part of the community.” Claremont-based Amy J. Putnam is a writer/photographer who is most often seen shooting folk concerts and whale watches (seldom at the same time). When not out taking photos, she can often be found online, Twittering and blogging.

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New London

people, places and things

Thank You for Making a Difference

Annual award and luncheon recognizes women who give back, and raises money for kids in need. by Laura Halkenhauser Guion


very day ordinary women make extraordinary community oriented contributions in the Lake Sunapee/ Kearsarge region. Some are obvious, but most are never acknowledged. How do you celebrate the women that tend to humanity in so many arenas — schools, hospitals, churches and civic organizations? The idea came to Wilmot resident Gail Matthews in an “a-ha moment.” She attended an event in Boston — “Celebrating Women who help with Juvenile Diabetes” — with guest speaker Doris Kearns Goodwin, a Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer, historian and political commentator. Driving home on Interstate 89 Matthews thought, “I know all of these fabulous women that no one hears about.” She was inspired to establish the same celebratory event for women in the Lake Sunapee/Kearsarge region to benefit the Lake Sunapee Region Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice Pediatric Programs. The luncheon raises money to support skilled care for acutely and chronically ill infants and children — services that often mean the difference between a child staying at home or

Mark Your Calendar This year’s Women Who Make A Difference luncheon will be held on Wednesday, May 15 at 11:30 a.m. at Colby-Sawyer College (Ware Campus Center) in New London. 40

Sutton resident Jean LaChance, the 2012 WWMAD Award Winner, with family members

being in an institution. The first Women Who Make A Difference luncheon debuted in 2000, chaired by none other than Gail Matthews. The first honoree was Jan Sahler of Wilmot who started as a registered nurse for the LSRVNA in 1983 and later became the Maternal Child Health Program Coordinator. Sahler, now retired, is a volunteer to this day. “Jan Sahler is a nurse, mother, volunteer, grandmother and if anything needs doing and done, well, call Jan. She is dedicated, hard working, elegant, forceful without abrasion, professional, caring and personifies womanhood at the best,” describes Cathy Raymond,

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

development officer of the LSRVNA. “Just look at the women who were honored through the 13 years and you will understand why Jan was perfect for number one.” The luncheon is now spearheaded by Andi Steel, past president and CEO of the LSRVNA. A committee of nine volunteers work together “throwing out good, crazy ideas” of different themes and luncheon menus. Nominees live anywhere from Warner to Hanover, as far south as Washington from Claremont to Salisbury and the towns in between. A woman can only win one time as there are “way too many incredible women in this area to single out,”

says Matthews. Only the committee members know the winner until the day of the luncheon. The neat thing is that somehow Raymond has the job of keeping this a secret from the recipient — “and still manage to get them there,” Raymond says. Awards are also given to an outstanding high school female who receives a cash prize. If there is a business that does good work for children they are honored as well. The honoree of the year gets a lot of kudos and a plaque commemorating her good works. Each year the luncheon features inspirational female speakers. Previous speakers have been the First Lady of the State of New Hampshire, Dr. Susan Lynch; Arnie Arneson, a nationally syndicated radio talk show host and commentator for MSNBC; Jennifer Vaughn, news anchor for WMUR TV; Janice Stillman, the first woman editor of the Old Farmer’s Almanac; Maxine Kumin, Pulitzer Prize winning author and NH Poet Laureate; Dr. Lori Alvord, author and the first Navajo woman surgeon; and Lynne Hubley, pastor of the First Baptist Church in Bradford. Last year the speaker was Nancy Sporborg, who started Keene’s Pumpkin Festival. Her talk was delivered with humor. “We all have our own mountains to climb. They may be 4,000 footers in the White Mountains, but they may be bringing up children or caring for aging parents. They may be going to school, tackling a difficult project, dealing with an illness, or searching for your passion in life. This presentation is not a presentation of ‘look at us, look what we did,’” she told the group. It was the sort of presentation that uplifts attendees and has them leaving arm-in-arm carrying the upbeat message of the luncheon’s purpose. Before the luncheon ends, children from the New London

Elementary School arrive and serenade the group. “Our biggest problem is that we might not have enough popsicles,” quips Matthews. And, in case you don’t know Matthews, she is one of Gail Matthews, event founder, is pictured with friend and former these women LSRVNA board member, Malora Gundy. In the background are the who “fall under event’s signature bears — a unique bear designed each year for the the radar,” as WWMAD award winners. she puts it. In heart and the vision to have created 1990 she founded the New London this inspirational event, Matthews is Hospital mammography fund to a woman who has made a difference benefit women who aren’t able to afnot only for that special honoree but ford mammograms. The program is for the Lake Sunapee Region VNA still thriving, and Matthews added & Hospice. the luncheon to her philanthropic efforts. With a sense of humor, a big • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Let’s Go A seasonal listing of performances, events, outdoor gatherings, fundraisers and other fun activities

Songweavers Spring Concert Sunday, April 14 4 p.m.

Songweavers, the popular a cappella women’s chorus at Concord Community Music School, will present its 22nd anniversary Spring Concert. Directed by Peggo Horstmann Hodes, Songweavers is a nonauditioned chorus of women of all ages and the largest of the Music School’s choral programs. Based on the belief that everyone can (and should) sing, the members of this chorus learn songs by ear in the African-American tradition; music-reading skills are not expected or required. >> Adults, $15; students/seniors, $12. Advance purchase is recommended. >> South Congregational Church, 27 Pleasant Street, Concord >>


Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

photo by Larry Crowe, courtesy of the Concord Community Music School


Jazz on a Sunday Afternoon Concert Series

Maple Weekend 2013

Saturday and Sunday, March 23 and 24 10 a.m to 4 p.m.

Sunday, March 10 Sunday, March 24 Sunday, April 7

Celebrate the sweetest season of the year with maple producers in New Hampshire.

photo courtesy of the artist

4 to 7 p.m.

This jazz music series replicates the “jazz sessions” of the 1930s and 1940s in New York and Chicago where renowned players like Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis would come together, sit-in and jam for hours on end. Come listen to JOSA performers, often internationally acclaimed, every other Sunday for a wonderful afternoon of good food, drink and incredibly spontaneous musical magic.

Vocalist and trumpet player, Christine Fawson, performs on March 24

Even if you know how maple syrup is made — from tapping the sugar maples to boiling sap in an evaporator over a blazing hot fire — it is still a treat to visit working sugarhouses and learn more about the families who continue the ancient tradition of making syrup. More than 100 sugar houses open their doors to visitors. >> weekend/index.html

>> The Center at Eastman, Grantham >>

photo by Henry Homeyer

Concord & Lakes Region Home Show Saturday, March 23, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 24, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Saturday, March 16 10 to 11 a.m.

Henry Homeyer, UNH Master Gardener and renowned horticulturist, will discuss ways to enhance your property using hardscape, whimsy and woody plants. His books and garden tools will be for sale. Register by March 8. >> LSPA Knowlton House, 63 Main Street, Sunapee >> Schedules may change; call to verify event information. Visit for additional events or to submit your own event.

>> Everett Arena, 15 Loudon Road, Concord >> Adults, $6; seniors (60 and over), $5; children (16 and under), free

photo courtesy of Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum

Series Kick-Off with Henry Homeyer: Beyond Perennials

If it’s been too long since your home had a facelift, it may be time to plan a few makeover projects. A great place to shop for inspiration is at the Concord & Lakes Region Home Show. The show offers an exciting array of the latest home improvement products and services for your primary or secondary home. See interior and exterior displays, showcasing ideas on decorating, remodeling, accessorizing, renovating and even building a home.

Opening Day of the Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum Sunday, May 5 12 to 5 p.m.

The Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum officially opens May 1, but there’s always a special event the first Sunday in May to mark the opening. The MKIM Contemporary Art Gallery is also open with a Containers exhibit. Meet the artists, participate in a hands-on craft, and enjoy refreshments from 12 to 4 p.m. >> Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum, 18 Highlawn Road, Warner >> • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Listen to the Music The hills are alive with the sound of music. Country, jazz, folk, African drum music — you name the genre and you can probably find it here in the Lake Sunapee area of New Hampshire.

If the harmonies of Simon and Garfunkel and the Indigo Girls give you goose bumps, it’s time you get to know Folk Fusion, a Sutton-based trio whose crisp, clean vocals; lovely harmonies; and solid musicianship can hold their own alongside the famous acts whose work has inspired them. Folk Fusion — Susan CancioBello on piano and vocals, Laurie Reeder on guitar and vocals, and Nicole Densmore on flute, djembe and vocals — first played together back in 2003. “It was April Fool’s Day,” laughs Cancio-Bello, “and we were at a Sutton Historical Society fundraiser. We just started singing, did some harmonizing, performed some folk songs and children’s songs, and it just felt so good we all agreed we should do it more often.” And for nearly a decade, that’s exactly what they’ve done, enjoying every minute of it. When it came to naming the group, Cancio-Bello recalls getting a little help from her daughter. “The way I felt about us singing together… it was like an explosion of music and happiness, and I wanted our name to capture that,” she says. “But Folk Explosion just didn’t sound right. My daughter, who was in school at the time, suggested Folk Fusion because it’s more of a coming together, a bonding. And that’s exactly what happens when we’re performing.” Onstage and off, the trio have bonded over the years, finding common ground in their musical tastes, their professions (all three are 44

educators), and in motherhood. And while Cancio-Bello, who holds degrees in music education and music therapy, characterizes herself and her band mates as “busy moms,” they’ve managed to find enough time to play local gigs and release two CDs of cover songs. Their self-titled debut started out as a demo until New Hampshire music

Kristen Senz and Laura Jean Whitcomb producer Gerry Putnam, impressed with what he was hearing during recording, urged them to add a few more songs. Most of the songs on the CD were recorded on the first take. For their second CD, Hand Me Downs, released in 2011, the band took a more disciplined, professional approach. Cancio-Bello says, “We really took our time with it, and made photo by Dana Flewelling, courtesy of Folk Fusion

Singing Stories in Sutton: Folk Fusion

by Barbra Alan, Merry Armentrout,

Folk Fusion members: Susan Cancio-Bello on piano and vocals (seated left), Nicole Densmore on flute, djembe and vocals (standing), and Laurie Reeder on guitar and vocals (seated right)

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

photo by Michael Marzelli, courtesy of Tammy Jackson Band

sure our vocals were correct.” Hand Me Downs gets its title from the Indigo Girls’ song, a cover of which is featured on the CD. “We don’t write our own songs, we do covers, which are kind of like musical hand-me-downs,” Cancio-Bello explains. The CD features covers of such seminal hits as Kansas’ “Dust in the Wind”; Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young’s “Teach Your Children”; and the band’s personal favorite, Simon and Garfunkel’s “The Boxer.” While Folk Fusion is best known for its traditional and contemporary folk covers, they do throw in a few surprises on Hand Me Downs, such as a cover of Pink’s soulful pop ballad “I Don’t Believe You,” one of Cancio-Bello’s daughter’s favorite tunes. For the members of Folk Fusion, the only thing more important than music is family. Over the years, they have built their performance schedule around their busy family lives, often playing afternoon or early evening performances at local venues such as the Sunapee Coffeehouse, which Cancio-Bello calls “a perfect fit” with the band, and the Back Room at the Mill in Bristol. They also perform at area farmers’ markets, on town greens, and at private parties. Regardless of the venue, Folk Fusion performances have a playful, intimate and spontaneous feel. Typically, the band doesn’t stick to a set list. “We play it by ear,” says Cancio-Bello. “If we’re playing

The Tammy Jackson Band

upbeat songs and the audience is really responding to them, we may think twice about playing a slow one. We’ll often follow the mood of the room.” — Barbra Alan

A Little Bit Country in Sunapee: The Tammy Jackson Band Most country songs often tell stories about love, heartbreak or cheating. Rarely can a country songwriter point to a snowstorm for inspiration but, for one Sunapee singer, a foot of Mother Nature’s white stuff is what prompted one of her favorite ballads. “It’s about losing someone and how much you appreciate and miss them now that they are gone. The whole song came to me when I was here by myself during a big snowstorm and I was shoveling the driveway. It is a love song, but the inspiration came from missing someone to help me shovel the driveway,” says Tammy Jackson with a laugh.

Jackson is one part of the fiveperson band, the Tammy Jackson Band, out of Sunapee, N.H. The band also includes Jackson’s husband, Cliff Clegg. Both are New Hampshire natives who met in Las Vegas in 1995 when Jackson was named CMA Modern Country Female Vocalist of the Year and Clegg’s band was named CMA Band of the Year. “That was the funny part. We joked that we had to go all the way to Vegas to meet someone from New Hampshire,” says Jackson. Jackson and Clegg discovered both of their fathers sang and played the guitar, mainly strumming country notes throughout their childhood. “We were both raised on country music. It certainly is what brought us together. We could try to stump each other on old country songs we knew from growing up. Country music is definitely our passion,” says Jackson. They turned that passion into a paycheck with the Tammy Jackson Band, playing in popular › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


not like the new stuff, or this guy might not like the old stuff, but somewhere along the line there’s something in country music that people can relate to.” The duo makes music out of their The Granite State Stompers, (left to right): Dave Cook, Whit Wendel, Sunapee home, Bill Zimmerman, Alden Keyser, Barry Bockus and John Chivers literally. Jackson calls Clegg “the epitome of the allGoodbye album,” she says. “Country encompassing great musician,” and music has morphed into pop and we she notes that he can play virtually don’t want to contribute to that.” any instrument. “If it has strings on A few years ago, Jackson and it, Cliff can play it,” she says. Clegg decided to take a break from Clegg loves the recording prolife on the road to focus on life in cess and spends hours in their home Sunapee and their performances studio. They finished up their perlocally. forming schedule last summer and “You give a lot when you’re a decided to lock themselves in the performing musician — your time, studio to work on your energy, your whole personaltheir new album. ity is shared with everyone. It’s just This time around nice to not be ‘on’ all of the time. So they’re looking we’re slowing things down a little to toward the past, regroup and come back out swinging not the future, for with both fists,” explains Jackson. inspiration. — Merry Armentrout “Our new material has a Eight to the Bar in Elkins: rawer, traditional The Granite State Stompers sound than the It’s the kind of foot-tapping Getter Better at music that conjures an earlier time

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photo courtesy of Granite State Stompers

New Hampshire venues such as Meadowbrook and the Hampton Casino ballroom, and opening for Charlie Daniels, Alan Jackson and Lorrie Morgan. But it’s actually the small, outdoor venues such as the Elkins Bandstand in New London or Sunapee Harbor that are the band’s favorites. “When you’re surrounded by people you know — and are there because they love you — it’s just wonderful,” says Jackson. “I prefer to play an outdoor venue more than any hall I’ve ever played.” Though country music doesn’t draw the big crowds as it does down South, Jackson believes the band recruits more Yankee country fans each time they play above the MasonDixon line. She attributes this to the band’s upbeat persona and progressive music. “There is something about country music that will touch just about anybody,” says Jackson. “They might

— when social networking happened at the local dance hall and kicking the can down the road was a child’s game, not political rhetoric. The Granite State Stompers, a mostly Lake Sunapee-area ensemble of jazz musicians, makes audience engagement a priority with their fun — and technically impressive — performances. “We believe the audience is an important part of any performance and we want to make sure they’re enjoying it,” says Dave Cook, who

plays clarinet and saxophone. “If we get the audience singing back at us, that’s an ideal situation.” The Granite State Stompers have been playing as a band since 2003, inciting joy and nostalgia for audiences at the New London bandstand as well as at private parties, weddings and political rallies. They recorded their first album, The Granite State Stompers Take a Tailgate Joyride, in 2008 at Cedar House Sound in Sutton. Cook, 77, says the six band members have an average of 50 years of music experience each. A careful listen to a few of their songs, even by an untrained ear, reveals the skill that these longtime musicians bring to their repertoire of traditional songs and sing-a-longs. Cook explains that each band member plays by ear and improvises his parts to match or complement the others. It’s polyphony, but not exactly counterpoint. “Playing by ear is a skill that none of us who do it can explain why we’re able to do it. It’s a fairly unusual skill, and it’s one that New Orleans Jazz relies on heavily,” he says. “If you listen, you can hear occasions when two instruments will, for whatever reason, either hit the exact same note at the exact same instant, or they’ll follow in line, and two is better than one.” Half of the band’s members — Cook, trombonist Whit Wendel and drummer Andy Bourke — live in Elkins, a village in New London that the Granite State Stompers has unofficially claimed as their hometown band. The band also features Bill Zimmerman of New London on trumpet, drummer Alden Keyser of Grantham, and banjo player John Chivers of Wentworth. Aside from Bourke, an active duty musician in the military for 26 years, the members all made their living in other ways. Zimmerman is

a former superintendent of schools in Hanover; Chivers taught German at Philips Exeter Academy; Keyser was a longtime chief financial officer; Cook is a retired self-employed investment counselor; and Wendel is a retired builder of custom homes. The Stompers plan to record a second album next fall. To get ready, they’ll be playing the album’s songs at gigs over the next year. “The more familiar we are with the material, the more creative we’ll be when we get into the studio,” Cook says. Beyond that next recording session, the band has no intentions of hanging up their instruments. The “rword” (retirement) has not come up at rehearsals or annual band parties. “I haven’t heard a solitary soul even utter such a word,” says Cook. “When you get to be our age, you do wonder how long you can keep going, but I will tell you this: I think I’m

playing better today in my 70s than I ever have before.” Cook says the most essential lesson any musician can learn is that it’s important to make every note count. “You have to learn to place your notes and make each note meaningful,” he says. “When you’re young and feisty, you think you can go up against anybody by playing a lot of notes, but it’s better to make it simpler and have it touch the heart.” — Kristen Senz

Drumming in Danbury: Ragged Mountain Time Band If you’ve driven through Danbury, you’ve driven by Hippie Hill — an unofficial gathering spot on the hill across from Dick’s Village Store where motorcyclists and rail trail users stop to rest, trade stories and play horseshoes. Now there are two songs about the › › › › ›

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Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

photo courtesy of The Ragged Mountain Band


50-year-old site, the most recent performed last year by singer/songwriter Lindsey Schust and The Ragged Mountain Band.

(Top) The Ragged Mountain Band (Bottom) Hippie Hill Cast

Schust, a resident of Andover, wrote the song after visiting Danbury in 2008. “While waiting for a friend, I noticed a group of fun loving people across the street,” she says. “I decided to meet the folks on Hippie Hill. After hearing their stories and watching them play horseshoes, I started thinking how Hippie Hill is a special place.” The catchy song, “Hippie Hill”, is a blend of country and bluegrass. Schust has an extensive music background — including a master’s degree in music composition from Tufts University and a bachelor’s degree in music from Brandeis

University — and a unique skill: she started playing African drums at age 9. “In my country songs, you can hear the echoes of Cuban ‘son’ music and the beat of West African drums,” she describes. “You may not know why your foot is tapping, but it will be because I’m a drummer, so rhythm informs all the music I write.” Schust, and her mom, Grace, teach music at the Concord Community Music School, teach private students, and teach African style drum workshops throughout New England. They are also members of The Ragged Mountain Band, which includes Jim Schust on guitar; Peg O’Neil, vocals and mandolin; BJ Entwisle, bass and vocals; and Emilie Meadows, banjo and vocals. Schust’s 2005 album “Dónde Está mi corazón” has found popularity on Latin music radio stations across the globe. But, in the last few years here in New Hampshire, she’s been writing country western style music, currently finishing up songs for The Ragged Mountain Band’s summer album. “They will be country songs, some of which were inspired by getting to know the folks through the Hippie Hill video project. There will be a ‘small town’ theme — country living and country values, like neighbors helping one another out, and living off the land,” she says. — Laura Jean Whitcomb

Learn More Tammy Jackson Band Granite State Stompers Folk Fusion Lindsey Schust/The Ragged Mountain Band

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Unlimited Access

Whether you need to borrow a book, research a topic, or study with friends, local libraries provide the materials — and the location. by Kristen Senz photography by Rob Strong

Tracy Memorial Library’s Timmie Poh (right) chats with library patron Christine Voss.

On a scale of one to 10, job satisfaction among local public librarians seems to rate somewhere around 35. “It’s a perfect job,” says Steve Klein, librarian at the Libbie Cass Library in Springfield. “There’s no stress. I can walk here from where I live. There’s no politics, no agendas, no surly co-workers. It’s great. Everyone should have a job like this.” Jane Moss, the children’s librarian at the Newbury Public Library, shares Klein’s sentiment. “I always wanted to be a librarian,” she says. › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Newbury children’s librarian Jane Moss reads during a recent story hour on Wednesdays. (Left) Moss helps Lilly Wolfinger of Newbury with crafts during story hour.

“It was the career I chose, and, fortunately, it fits me like a glove.” Timmie Poh, who has worked at the Tracy Memorial Library in New London for more than 30 years, lights up when asked about her job. “I laugh all day long here,” she says. “I love coming to work.”

More than books Along with other dedicated staff members and a veritable army of indispensable volunteers, these librarians help make our public libraries much more than just collections of books on loan. Rosie Johnson, director of the Newbury Public Library, says she likes to think of them as “part library, part community center” — places where families, friends and neighbors can gather, read, learn and connect. Moss, an Ohio native, worked in libraries throughout her career, starting with the library at the Toledo Museum of Art, where she met her husband, Michael. 52

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

She moved to New Hampshire from Yorktown, N.Y., when she retired seven years ago and has since been delighting young children during her weekly story circle in Newbury. “One of the fun things about coming up here is I’ve learned a whole new vocabulary of books,” she explains. Having relocated from a more urban area, Moss discovered a genre of northern New England children’s books that focuses on nature and our strong connections to it. “I don’t think I ever read a book about a moose until I moved to New Hampshire.” The Wednesday morning story circle at the Newbury Public Library brings in close to 20 preschool age children every week. On a recent Wednesday morning, as Moss sang and read to them, the kids were visibly enthralled by her gentle yet playful demeanor. As the years have passed, Moss has seen the children she read to when they were 2 move up through the grades. “I’ve seen kids who are now in the fifth or sixth grade,” she says. “Because this is a small community, you still see them.”

All in the family Walk into the Libbie Cass Library in Springfield and you’ll likely find Steve Klein checking in books at the front desk. At some point, he’ll announce that the Libbie Cass Library is “the best public library in Springfield, N.H.” This tongue-in-cheek motto, which is inscribed on a plaque behind his desk and printed on canvas bags the library has available for sale, is “sort of a joke,” Klein explains, “but we are a good library.” Klein has manned the front desk since 1998, when his mother, Celeste, the former librarian, passed away. “When she was ill, she started training me to do the work,” Klein says. Five years earlier, in 1993, the residents of Springfield rallied › › › › ›

Springfield librarian Steve Klein answers phone calls at the Libbie Cass Library. Top photo: Klein among the books • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


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together to provide the library, then housed in what is now the Springfield Historical Society building, with a new home. The current library on Route 114 is about six times the size of the former space and now contains more than 18,000 books. “It was a labor of love for the whole town,” explains longtime library trustee Alice Nulsen. “It was very much a community effort. It’s a wonderful little library, and Steve is certainly the heart of it.” But Klein is quick to point out that it takes more than heart to make a strong, functional library. “What makes this library tick is the volunteers, and that’s true of most of the libraries in the state,” he says. In Springfield, the library is even more of a focal point and gathering place for residents due to the nature of the town, which has no school, no general store, and few businesses. “Springfield is a little unusual, in that there’s no town in this town,” says Klein. “It’s almost entirely homes in the woods, so it can be hard for people to meet each other.”

In Springfield, the library is a focal point and gathering place for residents due to the nature of the town, which has no school, no general store, and few businesses. In addition to working regularly at the library, Klein has devised an ingenious system that not only helps supply books to tiny libraries elsewhere in New Hampshire, but also contributes money to the Springfield library’s growing scholarship fund, which annually provides money to Springfield residents who are working to further their education. Several years ago, while online and perusing the list of books larger

The Best Team In Town... Not the Biggest... Simply the Best! libraries in the state were offering to other libraries, Klein realized that the state’s smallest libraries could rarely take advantage of these available books “because some small libraries didn’t have computers and often they aren’t online when the books are offered.” Klein came up with the idea to become a collection point for all the books, which are delivered via a state-funded interlibrary van service. Every week, he types up a list of new books and sends it out to partner libraries in smaller towns like Alexandria, Orford and Unity. The librarians there respond with the books they want, and Klein sorts and boxes them for delivery. Then he sells what he can on Amazon, where the Springfield Library currently has a 99 percent approval rating; Klein hopes it will soon reach 100. “I try hard to describe every flaw I see in a book, so people know exactly what they’re getting,” he says. All the proceeds from the book sales benefit the scholarship fund Klein’s mother started. “It seems like everybody wins,” Klein says.

Not all libraries are quiet Not far away in New London, the Tracy Memorial Library is one of the area’s largest. Timmie Poh, a voracious reader with contagious enthusiasm, is in her 31st year as a librarian there. A native of Maryland and a former flight attendant, Poh moved to New London 35 years ago. After three decades working at the library — first as the children’s librarian and now as reference librarian — she estimates that she knows 19 out of every 20 people who walk through its doors. With many reading nooks, gathering spaces and a room just for teens, Poh explains that this is “not a quiet library.” Poh says the library’s staff is what makes the place so warm and welcoming. “The people on the › › › › ›

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Bethlehem, NH 603.444.2928 ext. 26 • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Despite the convenience and popularity of electronic books, the traditional paperbacks and hardcovers seem to be here to stay.

desk make all the differalso share the desire to entice more ence, because that’s the people to discover both the books first impression,” she says. and the people that make these li“All of us are very dedicatbraries the treasures they are. ed, and the patron always “The door is open,” says comes first.” Johnson, director of the Newbury Like librarians everyPublic Library, “and when you walk where, Poh, Klein and Moss have “I’m really a big picture book fan, in this door, we’re really happy to see watched as technological advances and I don’t think technology can repyou.” have changed the function and licate the white space and the visual Kristen Senz is a freelance writer layout of their libraries. Although appeal of a great picture book,” Moss based in Newbury. She also works an empty card catalog cabinet at the adds. part time as a development specialist Tracy Memorial Library now serves Thousands of local residents at West Central Behavioral Health. as a computer table, Poh and her take advantage of the many resources colleagues envision local libraries available at our local libraries each Rob Strong is a freelance photograbecoming more relevant in people’s year. But there are still plenty of pher in Grantham. Portfolios of his lives, not less. people who have never set foot inside work in documentary, portrait, wedLocal town libraries are amasstheir town library. Aside from an ding and landscape photography are ing large collections of audio books obvious love of the work they do, the available at and DVDs, and while the future of librarians in our local communities technology and the role it will play in the library remains unknown, the purpose of the local library as a place for meeting neighbors and accessing resources shows no sign of fading away. “I’m learning, even at an advanced age, about new technologies,” says Moss, the children’s librarian in Newbury. “This is not your grandmother’s library. We really try to bring the world into the small library.” And, despite the convenience and popularity of electronic books, the traditional paperbacks and hardcovers seem to be here to stay. At the Tracy Memorial Library in New London, librarian Timmie Poh covers a new children’s book. 56

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Kearsarge Area Marketplace

Great Books & Toys

Games for All Ages

16 East Main Street OPEN Tues - Sunday 9 am to 6 pm • 456-2700 Something Wonderful is Happening in Warner

It’s Good for You  

Massage therapy isn’t just a luxury these days. It’s a necessity for many folks with chronic conditions and stressful lives.


elieve stress. Improve circulation. Relax muscles. Lower blood pressure. Strengthen the immune system. Accelerate rehabilitation after injury. Touch is a powerful healer, and nothing illustrates this more than massage therapy. Meet five women who offer bodywork services to happy, healthy clients in the Kearsarge/Upper Valley area.

Sarah McClennen Sarah McClennen found out about massage and craniosacral therapy the hard way. As a teenager, McClennen was involved in a serious automobile

Sarah McClennen is a craniosacral therapist and massage therapist.


Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

by Kristen Senz photography by Douglas K. Hill

accident. While it didn’t cause critical injury, McClennen found that she just “never felt right after that.” “I wasn’t satisfied, at 17 years old, hearing that I was going to have headaches and stomach problems for the rest of my life,” she says. For years after the 1982 crash, McClennen tried various treatments to resolve her physical problems, including chiropractic, homeopathic, naturopathic and other alternative therapies. “I spent the better part of 10 years just trying

to get myself better,” she says. “It’s been an interesting thing for me, because I’ve experienced a lot of different supplements and diets and bodywork, and I’ve watched them become popular.” Through the process of trying out treatments for her own condition, McClennen was able to find out what worked and what didn’t. She took a special interest in the benefits of craniosacral therapy and trained at the Upledger Institute, which was founded by the recently deceased developer of craniosacral therapy, osteopath John Upledger. Craniosacral therapists rely heavily on their sense of touch to tap into the body’s natural rhythms in an effort to reduce pain and encourage better health. McClennen has come to specialize in craniosacral therapy, though she also practices deep tissue, Swedish, neuromuscular, trigger point and pregnancy massage, as well as foot and hand reflexology, ear coning, acupressure, regional tissue release, myofascial and zero balancing work. A graduate of the New Hampshire Institute for Therapeutic Arts in Hudson, McClennen is currently studying to become a certified “Rolfer,” a term that refers to practitioners of a therapy that centers on structural integration of the body in gravity, which was named after its late founder, Dr. Ida Rolf. “What attracted me to Rolfing was that I had personal experience with it,” McClennen says. “I’m physically active, and I was having some musculoskeletal issues.” Now in her 20th year as a licensed massage therapist, McClennen says the experience and education she has gained has helped her address the problems in her own body and others as well. “I think I’m more comfortable doing massage now than I was maybe even five or six years ago,” she said, “because

Cathie Zoeller believes that massage and yoga both require mindfulness.

I know how to use my body better.”

Cathie Zoeller Being present and focused in the moment is a constant goal for massage therapist and yoga instructor Cathie Zoeller, who has a practice in downtown Lebanon, provides massage at her home in Croydon, and

serves as the on-call massage therapist at Faces Spa in New London. A native of Connecticut, Zoeller moved to New Hampshire about a decade ago and is a 2007 graduate of the massage therapy program at River Valley Community College in Claremont. › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


Zoeller, who runs Healing Arts Bodywork & Yoga, started doing yoga 35 years ago. She has found that both yoga and massage require mindfulness and tuning in to the present moment. With every client, every

session and every yoga class, she deliberately creates the intention that it is the first massage or yoga instruction the person has ever received. She says her method opens her mind and body to a certain newness that often enables her to recognize problems that might otherwise be missed. “I love both practices, and each time I approach massage or approach yoga, it’s with that beginner’s mind,” she says. “I love what yoga does for my body as well as what I can do for people in a massage session for their bodies.” Zoeller offers Swedish and deep tissue massages for relaxation and pain relief, as well as therapeutic sports massage and hot stone massage. “The stones help to relax the muscles, and some people really enjoy the heat element because it helps them to relax easier,” she says.

Many of her yoga students are also her massage clients, allowing her to guide them in their own health while providing relief. Zoeller is passionate about her work and about working with people. Her practice in Lebanon, located at 79 Hanover Street, has been open for a year and a half, and she provides massage at Faces Spa when appointments are scheduled.

Vickie Branch When not providing therapeutic massage for her clients, Vickie Branch can sometimes be found dissecting a cadaver in front of a class of aspiring physical therapists and physician assistants. “The dissection is pretty amazing,” she says. “It enables me to visualize the structures and muscles that I’m working with on in live people.”

What Does It Mean? Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, noninvasive method of evaluating and enhancing the craniosacral system, which consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. It extends from the bones of the skull, face and mouth — which make up the cranium — down to the tailbone. Deep tissue massage helps with chronic muscular pain, injury rehabilitation, and reduces inflammation-related pain. These techniques require advanced training and a thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology. Swedish massage is a vigorous system of treatment designed to energize the body by stimulating circulation. Rolfing utilizes physical manipulation and movement awareness to


bring head, shoulders, thorax, pelvis and legs into vertical alignment. Myofascial trigger point therapy relieves muscular pain and dysfunction through applied pressure to trigger points of referred pain and through stretching exercises. Trigger point myotherapy is a noninvasive therapeutic modality for the relief and control of myofascial pain and dysfunction. Treatment consists of trigger point compression, passive stretching and a regime of corrective exercises. Zero balancing has its roots in osteopathy, acupuncture, Rolfing and meditation. This technique provides clients the possibility of healing by addressing the energy flow of the skeletal system. —Information courtesy of

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

A licensed massage therapist since 1990, Branch has a doctorate in osteopathic manual therapy from the Canadian College of Osteopathy in Toronto. Osteopathy is a field that combines traditional medical training with an understanding of how to work with bones, muscles and other body tissues. In a process called

palpation, practitioners use touch and other senses to diagnose and help patients as they work through structural and other problems. About 15 years ago, Branch, a Webster resident, developed the massage therapy curriculum at River Valley Community College in Claremont, where she taught for five years. Today, she runs a massage therapy practice in New London and assists with cadaver dissections for anatomy classes at Franklin Pierce University. She also has done regulatory work for the massage therapy industry, both in New Hampshire and nationally, as a former member of the New Hampshire Advisory Board for Massage Therapists and the Federation of State Massage Therapy Boards. Branch has studied myofascial, muscle energy, craniosacral, trigger point and deep tissue massage therapy. She said people usually come to her with specific problems and, thanks to her broad knowledge base, she’s able to determine what treatment would be the most help. Although much of her work involves teaching and supervising others, Branch is a perpetual student. “I love that it’s a never ending learning process,” she says of her work. “I love the people I come into contact with, whether it is students, clients or other massage therapists across the country. I’ve been doing this for more than 20 years. I’ve seen a lot of different types of people, and they’ve all taught me something.”

Vickie Branch knows how to work with bones, muscles and other body tissues.

Anne Perry Anne Perry has always been a seeker, but it wasn’t until her mid40s, when she packed all her belongings into a Ford pickup for a cross country road trip, that she truly

found her calling. A 1996 graduate of the Desert Institute of Healing Arts in Tucson, Ariz., Perry had already studied massage therapy and returned to the East Coast, where she did › › › › › • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine


other work for a couple of years. The road trip brought her back out west, where she received her first Thai massage from a former instructor. Immediately, she asked him for additional training in the ancient practice. “He said, ‘I’m flattered, but you need to go to Thailand and do it yourself,’” she recalls. “That was a big turning point for me.”

A few days later, Perry was on a cheap flight to Bangkok. She studied under several masters of Thai massage and has since returned to Thailand or India to update her skills about once a year. Thai massage is usually given on the floor on a mat. The receiver wears loose or stretchy clothing. The practitioner is on the floor and uses either the hands or feet as a fulcrum for movement, Perry explains. Pressure applied by the practitioner is meant to free up the body’s natural energy flow, and the massage usually follows the body’s Sen lines, which are somewhat analogous to the meridians known in Chinese medicine. “It’s made my practice stand out a little bit,” Perry says. “I think any time a person gets a specialty in something, and they enjoy it, that it shows and people seek it out.” Thai massage incorporates breath 62

Anne Perry kneels on the floor during her work with a client.

work and posture improvement techniques, with the practitioner helping the receiver work through yoga-like positions. The practice connects with a holistic view of the body and individual health. “It’s almost like a dance; it’s relaxing and it’s energizing at the same time,” says Perry, who also practices

Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

Swedish massage and other forms of bodywork. Perry, 58, is a resident of Warner and is licensed as a massage therapist nationally and in New Hampshire. She also is a member of the International Association of Structural Integrators. At her practice in New London, she strives to

empower her clients to work on their own health through awareness and by changing negative habits in sleep, diet, exercise and overall lifestyle. “Making the appointment is the first step, and then when you show up, there’s a commitment between us,” she says. “There’s sort of a bond and a commitment and a dance and an interrelationship, and I treat that as a sacred duty.”

in New London together. “I really, really just like to make people feel better,” says Jill, a graduate of the massage program at River Valley Community College in Claremont. “That’s why I became a

massage therapist.” Jill says she and the three other massage therapists at the spa always listen to their customers and make a point to customize the massage to suit each guest, whether they › › › › ›

Jill Tremblay It was on their wedding anniversary in Florida more than a decade ago that Jill and Peter Tremblay received their first-ever therapeutic massages. They enjoyed the experience so much that, as they were leaving, they joked that they should open up their own spa somewhere. That playful joke has since become the couple’s dream realized, as they prepare to celebrate 10 years of owning and operating the Garden Spa

Jill Tremblay The Garden Spa New London 526-6540 Cathie Zoeller Healing Arts Bodywork & Yoga Lebanon 448-9642 Anne Perry New London 526-7438 Vickie Branch New London 526-2049 Sarah McClennen New London 526-2566

Jill Tremblay of The Garden Spa uses hot stones to relax muscles. • Spring 2013 • Kearsarge Magazine



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seek to relax, relieve pain, or work out some deeper muscular problems in the body. “It just depends on what that specific person needs,” she says. Tremblay’s favorite type of massage to get or give is a hot stone massage. The heat from the river stones helps muscles relax more quickly. She also offers Swedish and deep tissue massages, as well as reflexology and specialized massage for pregnant women. Tremblay, who lives in Wilmot with her husband and their kids, says coming to New Hampshire was definitely the right choice for their family. Business at the spa has been steady, and looks forward to serving many more residents of the Lake Sunapee region. “We have a great core of regular customers,” she says. “Thank you to all my friends and clients, and hopefully, I’ll be here for years to come to take care of people.”

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Kearsarge Magazine • Spring 2013 •

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Kearsarge Magazine Spring 2013  

Kearsarge Magazine is an award-winning publication that covers the Lake Sunapee/Kearsarge/Concord area of New Hampshire.

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