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T H E S Q UA R E FA L L / W I N T E R 2016 —

THE SQUARE ity

The Magazine for Seacoast Creativity, Culture & Commun

FREE SQUARE STYLE G O O D E AT S THE THRILL OF THE CHASE A TINY BIT HUGE

FREE

Square Style RISING ABOVE

Fall finds pg. 8

The Thrill of The Chase Score big at seacoast auctions pg.34

GAME ON

A Tiny Bit Huge

The branding of Portsmouth creative culture pg. 40

DOCK-TO-DISH MOVEMENT

Rising Above

Women chefs make their mark on the seacoast pg. 58

PLUS: Shopping

Shelter, Dining, Events


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Fall/Winter 2016

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inside

Volume 03

Number 02

Fall / Winter 2016 on the cover

Coffee fuels Seacoast creativity at Profile Coffee Bar in Portsmouth. Photo by Jason McKibben.

06 Square One

For everything you need to know about the Seacoast.

18 Welcome to the Family photo by kelly wright and meganne fabrega

22 An Artful Evolution photo by jason mckibben

34 Thrill of the Chase 40 A Tiny Bit Huge Kelly Wright of Freeman’s Auction finds good deals — and some steals — in the Seacoast auction scene, and you can too. Story by Kelly Wright and Meganne Fabrega

Musician Peter Squires gets to know friends new and old through his podcast, “Welcome to the Family Room.”

Local connector Kathleen Soldati is at the helm of the ever-expanding Discover Portsmouth Center.

26 Music With a Message

Portsmouth’s Leftist Marching Band carries on a long tradition of street music made around the world.

30 Master Class

A mid-life move from software sales to swimming keeps Bob Fernald of North Hampton busy, in and out of the water.

34 The Thrill of the Chase

A small city with a huge arts scene gets its very own slogan. How Portsmouth branded its creative culture. Story by Debbie Kane

Think auction prices are out of your reach? With our handy guide you’ll be scoring steals in no time.

40 A Tiny Bit Huge

Portsmouth’s Art-Speak got A Tiny Bit Huge ... and a tiny bit controversial. Debbie Kane goes behind the scenes.

46 Game On

Looking for a new diversion? Get on board with the latest from the Seacoast’s game developers.

52 A Creative Haven

52 A Creative Haven 58 Rising Above One family builds a beautiful life out of art in the woods of Newmarket. Story by Meganne Fabrega Photos by Greta Rybus

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Megan Grocki introduces us to some of the Seacoast’s top women chefs. Photos by Jessica Beebe

photo by jessica beebe

photo by greta rybus

In Newmarket a family builds a house that slowly, and thoughtfully, transforms to a home one handmade piece at a time.

58 Rising Above

Meet the women behind some of the hottest kitchens on the Seacoast.

64 The Dock-to-Dish Movement

A community seafood program partners with area restaurants to help save the oceans — and the local fishing industry — one obscure fish species at a time.

72 Good Eats! Sweet treats for the season 76 Events Get out and explore 80 What The? Can you solve this photographic mystery?


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From the Editor

President/Publisher Sharron R. McCarthy x5117 smccarthy@mcleancommunications.com

The Great Unknown Fall always feels like a fresh start to me. The humidity fades, the fresh air moves in and I am inspired by (and envious of) all of the kids who get a chance to start school anew. This is the time that I want to take up painting, learn a new language or do all of the things I swore I would do over the summer that somehow wilted away with the heat; pushed aside when the ocean called my name. There is usually something holding us back from the “great unknown” such as fear, laziness, ignorance or the lack of time or money. (I’ve been guilty of using all of those excuses and more.) Some of these are valid concerns, but deep down we all know that there are work-arounds to everything if we are determined enough to push forward. Luckily there are those who turn towards the unknown, and we’ve convinced them to jump in to this issue of The Square with us. Like Peter Squires, who left the stability of a 9-to-5 job in order to give himself the time and space to develop his next move … not knowing exactly what that might be. There’s also Bob Fernald, who rediscovered swimming at age 40, and seven years later swam 21 miles across the English Channel (who knows what lurks in those waters). Kathleen Soldati of the Discover Portsmouth Center uses her boundless energy to mine the city’s rich history for future exhibits, whatever they may be. Our “Vintage Seacoast” columnist Kelly Wright searches for the known among the unknown as his livelihood, often turning a profit in the process. And for those of us who just need to spice up the familiar, Katie Shine’s “Back at It” edition of “Square Style” has some great ideas to ease the pain of saying goodbye to summer and to reinvigorate the familiar confines of our workspaces. However you decide to face your fears and move forward into the unknown, there are plenty of opportunities around the Seacoast. Enjoy going out for music? Go see a play. Addicted to burgers? Hit up a vegetarian restaurant. Love painting seascapes? Take a pottery class. Drive a new route into town, ride your bike instead of walking, see a band you’ve never heard of before — with risk comes reward. Let me know what you’ve done that’s new to you at editor@thesquarenh.com. I am always looking for inspiration.

Executive Editor Rick Broussard x5119 editor@nhmagazine.com

Editor Meganne Fabrega editor@thesquarenh.com Art Director Chip Allen x5128 callen@nhmagazine.com

Managing Editor

Erica Thoits x5130 ethoits@nhmagazine.com

Assistant Editor Sarah Cahalan x5115 scahalan@nhmagazine.com Creative Assistant Candace Gendron x5137 cgendron@nhmagazine.com Production Manager Jodie Hall x5122 jhall@nhbr.com Senior Graphic Designer Wendy Wood x5126 wwood@mcleancommunications.com Graphic Designer Nancy Tichanuk x5116 ntichanuk@mcleancommunications.com Office Manager Mista McDonnell x5114 mmcdonnell@nhbr.com Sales Executive Tal Hauch x5145 thauch@mcleancommunications.com Events/Marketing Manager Erica Baglieri x5125 ebaglieri@mcleancommunications.com Sales/Events Coordinator Amanda Andrews x5113 aandrews@mcleancommunications.com Business/Sales Coordinator Heather Rood x5115 hrood@mcleancommunications.com

VP/Consumer Marketing Brook Holmberg brookh@yankeepub.com

VP/Retail Sales Sherin Pierce sherinp@yankeepub.com

Digital Media Specialist Morgen Connor x5140 mconnor@mcleancommunications.com

150 Dow Street, Manchester, NH 03101 (603) 624-1442, fax (603) 624-1310 E-mail: editor@thesquarenh.com Advertising: sales@thesquarenh.com

Meganne Fabrega Editor

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photo by alyssa alameida duncan

© 2016 McLean Communications, Inc. The Square® is published by McLean Communications, Inc., 150 Dow St., Manchester, NH 03101, (603) 624-1442. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without the written permission of the publisher is prohibited. The publisher assumes no responsibility for any mistakes in advertisements or editorial. Statements/opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect or represent those of this publication or its officers. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, McLean Communications, Inc.: The Square disclaims all responsibility for omissions and errors.


john benford by celeste ladd, stephanie simpson lazenby by misa erder, greta rybus by rebecca stumpf, jennifer moore by kirsten elfe, nancy horton by tsar fdorsky, sherrie flick photo by heather mull, denise wheeler photo by michael winters

Contributors Jessica Beebe is a photographer and stylist who specializes in portraiture, product and lifestyle photography. Her photographs don’t just capture a moment in time, they create one. Her work has been shown in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Portland and other major cities across the country.

Megan Grocki is a professional people watcher. She leads the customer insights and research team at Nasdaq. She is also earning her masters degree in Gastronomy at Boston University. A 20-year Portsmouth resident with a deep-rooted curiosity about the local food scene, she’s always up for the best bite in town.

Liz Davenport has been a photographer for 20 years and is the proud owner of Convinced Photography. “There is always a story to be told in every image and I am privileged to share it with you.” Visit Liz and her work at convincedphotography.com.

Jason McKibben is a visual storyteller. He spent a decade working for newspapers all over the US and now freelances for clients throughout the Seacoast. He’s also on a mission to brew the perfect pale ale. He lives in Durham with his wife and son. See his work: jasonmckibben.com

John Benford is a commercial and fine art photographer, specializing in on-location photography of places and people. He lives in Portsmouth with his wife and their 2-year-old son. Check out his work at johnbenfordphoto.com.

Chris Hislop has been writing and conversing about the Seacoast music scene for more than a decade. He loves music. And his 2-year-old son. And his wife. And his dog, Red. And people ... He’s pretty friendly. Reach him at christopher.hislop@gmail.com.

Guy Capecelatro III is a storyteller and songwriter in Portsmouth who owns the record label Two Ton Santa. He is the creator of “Some Women” and guest curator of “Songwriters in the Round” at The Music Hall Loft. His latest release is “Scatter the Remains” through Burst & Bloom records.

Dylan Haigh is an award-winning graphic designer and an awardless fine artist. He is the Creative Director at Haigh + Martino, a design and branding studio in downtown Portsmouth. Check out Dylan’s work at haighandmartino.com.

Writer and editor Larry Clow lives on the Seacoast, where he can often be found drinking tea, honing his baking skills and, of course, playing games.

Greta Rybus is a photographer who specializes in editorial, portrait, food and travel photography. Originally from Idaho, she bounced around a bit before landing in Portland, Maine.

Jared Charney, a portrait and editorial photographer based in New England, is constantly inspired by people and how the camera and lens are an access to study and reveal the people he meets. When not seeing the world through a viewfinder, he can be found running around the small North Shore town with his son, daughter and wife.

Katie Shine is a freelance writer, event producer and public relations specialist for KSH PR Group. She can knit like a mad woman, is obsessed with mozzarella sticks and is the brains (and body) behind the pop-up party “Cabin Fever Portsmouth.” Try to keep up: @KatieShineH on Twitter and Instagram

Roger Goun is a recovering software engineer, a political geek and an event and street photographer living on the New Hampshire Seacoast. He can often be spotted holding a camera in the background of televised New Hampshire political events.

Thérèse LaGamma serves as Deputy Director of Programming at The Music Hall (TMH) where she has presented The Moth Main Stage, Lyle Lovett and His Big Band, Mavis Staples, Reggie Watts and featured emerging talent. She produces shows in two performance venues since the opening of the Loft. In addition to her role at TMH, she is currently DJing at WUNH.

Debbie Kane writes, lives and runs on the Seacoast. She balances writing about various lifestyle topics with attempts at parenting two daughters. The best part of her job is sharing stories about the unique people who live and work here. More at debbiekanewriter.com.

Harry McCoy is a filmmaker, writer, musician, artist and photographer who haunts the Seacoast like a bad penny. He is currently working on a documentary about freelance athletes and why they bother. He lives in Exeter with his family.

Stephanie Simpson Lazenby is a writer, educator and performer. She runs enrichment workshops at local elementary schools, helping students learn through writing and acting. Performances include, “Listen to Your Mother,” telling true, NSFW tales of the aftermath of childbirth. She also makes a helluva good spaghetti and meatballs.

Michael Sterling is vice president of the New Hampshire Society of Photographic Artists. He is also a juried member of the New Hampshire Art Association and was previously on its board. His favorite subjects include landscapes, cityscapes, architectural forms and textures, as well as “environmental portraiture.”

Denise Wheeler is an educator, audiophile, advocate, mother, writer and low-tech photographer. Writing allows her to celebrate her beloved Seacoast community and dig deeper into topics that capture her imagination or sense of social justice.

Kelly Wright is the director for Freeman’s Trusts & Estates (New England) and a current appraiser on the “Antiques Roadshow.” He lives in Portsmouth with his family. He is happy to provide free and confidential advice. Wright can be reached at (603) 4989530 or email him at kwright@freemansauction.com. thesquarenh.com

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8 style 12 seacoast shopkeepers 14 five faves 16 vintage seacoast 17 words about pictures

Paper beats rock and donuts beat yoga. These are scientific facts. But coffee is the real hero in this story and you’re gonna need a lot of it on the first day of school. $18 Off Piste, Portsmouth facebook

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Jennifer is a busy mom of two boys. She works at the local library, freelances at two magazines and blogs about style in her spare time. With her schedule, she doesn’t always have time to make it to the bank, but when she does she’s greeted by one of our private bankers who know her by first name. Whether she’s banking from her laptop, her mobile phone or at her local branch, it’s always personal and convenient. Just two of the reasons Jennifer likes banking with us.

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Style

noteworthy items from around the t. Seacoast to add to your shopping lis

Repurposed Notebooks Reading, writing and arithmetic. The vintage shop Lost Coast is taking the writing part of that equation to another level. Their line of up-cycled notebooks and sketchpads are comprised of repurposed VHS or vinyl record covers. $10 Lost Coast, Kittery, Maine facebook

Wine and Cheese To put it lightly, heading back into the office or classroom after a leisure-filled summer is the pits. Sometimes you need something a little bit stronger to deal with all the ­ entering added headache — stage left — wine and cheese. Wine, $16. Cheese ranging from $20 to $23 a pound. C’est Cheese, North Hampton cestcheesenh.com

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FOLK Hanging Planter by Boston Ceramicist Christina Kosinski Did you know that if you speak to plants, then there is a better chance they’ll live longer? Grab one for your office or classroom, just make sure you talk to the plants when no one is around or you may sound a little crazy. Planter, $32; Plant, $6.50 Kittery, Maine shop-folk.com

photos by katie shine

By Katie Shine

and disapSummer is over. Back to school. Papers, notebooks, quarterly reports fun too — pearing vacation time will make anyone go crazy. However, fall can be Hot pencils. #2 d sharpene newly with replaced is grass cut we promise! Freshly of summer days morph into cool fall evenings. Think warm apple cider instead Landing. Ferry Jimmy Juice at Old and carPost Labor Day festivities are less BBQ and more work, school, sports spirthose keeping to method -true tried-and one pool pick ups. There is always all over its up: Enter retail therapy. We’ve rounded up some of the best items hall. the Seacoast that will get you jazzed for long days at the office or lecture


Tote Bag These bags are “totes” in. Get it? If you do, then you’ll love this graduated version of the popular item. One hundred percent cotton canvas with leather base and handles. Two inner pockets, brass zipper closure and fully lined.

Plug So many cords, so few outlets. Between your phone, computer, tablet and desk lamp there is just so little space to keep your tech organized. These trendy and simple extension cords will contain the clutter while sprucing up your desk. Best part? They are so cool looking you don’t need to hide them away. $59 Sault New England, Portsmouth saultne.com

$88 Gus and Ruby Letterpress Portsmouth gusandruby.com

Bluefin Tuna Key Ring Stay organized and connected to your Seacoast roots. This key ring, which features the coordinates for Portsmouth, will keep all your keys in one place. At the same time, you can reminisce about all your summer fishing adventures ... while you slave away in your fluorescent-lit office cubicle. $45 Vintage Fish Company, shop online at vintagefishcompany.com

photos by katie shine

Thinking Puddy If you’re stressed, then the healthy solution is to sweat it out — but what if you can’t hit the gym midday while you’re at work? Thinking Puddy is the next best thing. It sits on your desk in a little airtight container and provides you stress-relieving, hand-exercising, mind-expanding, total fun. Not to mention that it’s just a bit addictive. Prices range from $3.49 to $14.99 Noggin Factory, Dover nogginfactorytoys.com

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Fjallraven Backpack Every year my mom would let me pick out a new backpack for school. Now that I’m a 31-year-old woman I can buy my own chic backpack for work, and with the new Fjallraven line, I’ll be the most popular girl in the break room. $75 Giblees Menswear, Danvers, Mass. giblees.com “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing” by Marie Kondo Everyone is obsessed with spring cleaning but honestly, kicking off your school year with a fresh, clean slate is even more important. Throw out the old, used and broken and welcome the fall with a clean, simple and de-cluttered lifestyle.

Concert Tickets to the Singer Songwriter Series Work and school shouldn’t be a constant barrage of homework and Excel spreadsheets. Make sure you supplement your 9-5 with a little art. The Singer Songwriter Series at The Music Hall Loft, sponsored by The District, features an intimate evening of music and art. Jump out of your comfort zone and experience music you’ve never heard of, for the first time. Running from August to November. Starting at $15 Music Hall Loft, Portsmouth themusichall.org

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Janegee Suncare The summer sun can wreak havoc on your skin. Don’t you want to walk through the doors of school with fresh, soft, younger looking skin? Of course you do. Janegee’s Suncare is a synergistic blend of coconut oil, carrot seed oil and raspberry seed oil designed to reduce inflammation, condition and hydrate your skin, and keep it sunkissed and glowing. Use it before the day at the beach or after if your skin is feeling pink or tender. $20 janegee, Portsmouth janegee.com

courtesy photos

$16.99 Water Street Bookstore, Exeter waterstreetbooks.com RiverRun Bookstore Portsmouth riverrunbookstore.com


W

Seacoast Shopkeepers: In

side Out

hen you enter the store Inside Out, located on Market Street in the heart of downtown Portsmouth, you get the feeling that you are being wrapped up in soft comfort. The combination of the friendly welcome that you receive, the sepia-toned wood, original brick and the hammock swing that is located in the back of the store all successfully blend to make this a place where you want

to take your time. When owner Patricia Longeran was in the early stages of developing the idea for Inside Out, her first thought was how it could fit into downtown Portsmouth. She says, “I knocked about the idea of what would to work with the other fabulous stores and boutiques that we are so lucky to wanted I — s businesse other with compete to want have here. I didn’t complement them.” Patricia finds just right combination of clothes and accoutrements to keep everyone — even the dogs — engaged when they come in. It is one of the few places that offers men’s clothing and shoes including a product her line called Damn Handsome (think rugged and clean). When describing a when mark her criteria for clothes she carries, Patricia knows she’s hit customer says, “I could just live in this.” Patricia’s welcoming business approach is certainly working. In addition Out, she is the owner of First Impressions Day Spa, located in Inside to North Hampton, as well as Solari Spa, which is conveniently a few doors down from Inside Out. Both spas have been in business for over 15 years. Says Patricia, “We are ever evolving, otherwise the business will get it stagnant. Things change, and it certainly has with e-commerce. I look at products feel and this way — you can never replace the experience to touch and clothes first hand and have quality staff help you — these details make

— by Stephanie Simpson Lazenby Inside Out is located at 46 Market Street Visit the website at insideoutportsmouth.com

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courtesy photos

the difference.” “Success is 100 percent the staff. You are only as good as who you work with and I work with the best. The stores wouldn’t be successful without them and I never would have been able to open up a second or a third I without them,” says Patricia. “Since I had that talented quality in place, space the when and — be could store the what of idea the curate to able was came up I got serious and spoke with the landlord.” It’s a good thing she also spoke with the landlord about her desire to use a sledgehammer — he actually told her to “Go for it!” As soon as the lease the was signed Patricia began to knock down walls so that she could recover not original beauty of the building. Patricia approached the renovation with that only an eye on the past, but also towards the future. She used materials we before spring the spent “I recycled. be to ready and were already available We fun! was That area. the in yard salvage every in boots muck my in opened are found inspiring raw materials. The desk at the front desk and the couches huge these take to exciting so is It made out of cross beams from an old barn. ” beautiful old beams and turn them into something completely different. only could you and 1847 in ed construct was building “The , continues Patricia there build in brick for about 50 years after the fires in Market Square. I knew the real was brick under the layers and I couldn’t wait to get at them. These are bones of Portsmouth.” Out “I love Portsmouth, the Seacoast — this is my home,” she says. If Inside place. is Patricia’s reflection of home, then it must be a warm, historic and funky


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Five Faves has run its course, where When the season for outdoor concerts to get her groove on? Luckily can a music lover go on the Seacoast sound are boundless and for us, the opportunities for indoor ths. can carry us through the cooler mon

Illustrations by Dylan Haigh

1

Portsmouth is a veritable treasure trove of local, national and international acts, and at its epicenter is The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., themusichall.org). With the Music Hall Presents and Intimately Yours series, we’re treated to live performances by classic performers such as Tony Bennett to indie favorites like The Milk Carton Kids. The Music Hall Loft (131 Congress St., themusichall.org), mere steps away from the Historic Theater, could be called its “boutique” location with a smaller venue that puts you practically on stage with the performers in series such as Live @ the Loft and the District Restaurant Singer Songwriter Series.

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Take a walk around Portsmouth and you’ll find music on every corner. 3S Artspace (319 Vaughn St., 3sarts. org) covers it all from live music to dance parties most nights of the week, featuring acts such as The Julie Ruin Project, Tacocat and Titus Andronicus. (Plan to grab a craft cocktail and some polenta tots at their in-house restaurant Block Six before the show.) The Press Room (77 Daniel St., thepressroomnh. com) is a local favorite with a full menu. Insider tip: This is the spot where the national acts go to hang out after their shows at the larger venues. Portsmouth Book & Bar (40 Pleasant St., bookandbar.com) offers music alongside of their wide selection of used books and extensive beer offerings.

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A quick walk or drive over Memorial Bridge and you’ll find The Dance Hall (7 Walker St., thedancehallkittery.org), which offers dance classes during the day and red-hot dance parties at night, as well as acts such as The Wondertwins and a holiday special of The Bang Group’s “Nut/Cracked.” Time it right and you might be able to warm up with free dance instruction when you buy a ticket to one of the many international music acts. If you’re looking to see the popular Soggy Po’ Boys, then this is a great place to catch them, but be warned — these shows always sell out!


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In Dover, Sonny’s Tavern (328 Central Ave., sonnystaverndover.com) features jazz acts, karaoke (if you dare) and local bands. Fury’s Publick House (1 Washington St., furyspublickhouse.com) is in the historic mill buildings of Dover with regular weekly acts as well as special events such as Roots, Rhythm and Dub Halloween. The Dover Brickhouse (2 Orchard St., doverbrickhouse.com) has 26 beers on tap and a live music venue on its second floor with weekly shows, mainly on Fridays.

Live

Comfortably.

Traveling, working, playing or just living your awesome life - We’ve got the goods. Visit Inside Out for unique gifts, designer jeans, specialty items for your kids, pets and even your back yard. Come on in and get your comfort on!

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The Stone Church in Newmarket (5 Granite St., stonechurchrocks.com) has been a mainstay of the Seacoast music scene since 1969, giving a space to many acts that are now music legends such as Phish and Bonnie Raitt. They’ve got something going on every night of the week from Blues Jam on Mondays to Irish Music on Thursdays, with local and national musicians taking over the stage on the weekends, many curated by Bright & Lyon Productions (brightandlyon.com).

46 Market Street · Portsmouth, NH · 603.294.9913 insideoutportsmouth.com

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Vintage Seacoast

By Kelly Wright

photo courtesy of northeast auctions by ronald bourgeault, portsmouth, nh.

Bellamy Eagles Soar from the Seacoast

JOHN HALEY BELLAMY EAGLE WITH “GOD IS OUR REFUGE AND STRENGTH” BANNER. Height 17 inches, width 48 inches. It was sold August 21, 2005 for $666,000.

T

he old adage “do one thing and do it well” could be said of the accomplishments of many historical figures, but for the Seacoast native John Haley Bellamy it holds especially true. Born in Kittery Point to a highly skilled woodworker in 1836, he was raised in the celebrated Sir William Pepperrell house. Built a century before, it was long known for its grandeur, particularly its elaborate woodwork interior. Clearly influenced by his family life and environs, Bellamy began his career in earnest at age 15. Over the course of the next five decades he worked in a variety of areas — garden statuary, clock cases, ship figureheads, picture frames, wall brackets and signs. Much of his trade involved Naval commissions, which were dwindling by the early 1870s, but the eagles that he so often carved for the Navy were gaining popularity in his retail business. In 1879 he was commissioned with what

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would become his legacy piece — the eagle figurehead for the U.S.S. Lancaster at the Portsmouth Navy Yard. Weighing over 3,200 pounds and taking two years to complete, it is the only remaining figurehead by him to survive. (It is now housed at The Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Virginia.) With workshops in Kittery Point and Portsmouth, he produced mainly wall-mounted carved eagles ranging from 2 inches to 12 feet for businesses, municipalities, locals and, increasingly, tourists. Ever the businessman, Bellamy created a stylized and streamlined look for the eagles that was both simultaneously artistic and efficient. The craned neck and arresting gaze of his eagles are not only transfixing but expeditiously carved, as his production line would have to be in order to fulfill orders for customers like Frank Jones, who was said to have ordered as many as 500 at a time.

Nowadays “Bellamy” eagles are seen throughout the Seacoast and beyond. These are almost certainly reproductions, mainly made by contemporary woodcarvers dedicated to the Bellamy tradition. Original Bellamy eagles are still out there to be discovered. Since the are rarely signed, it takes a keen eye and good knowledge of his technique to know for sure. Depending on size and condition, originals generally sell for between $2,000 to $50,000. They are not as strong in value today as they once were, though in 2006 an exceptional example sold for $660,000 at Northeast Auction in Portsmouth. Kelly Wright is the Director for Freeman’s Trusts & Estates (New England) and a current appraiser on the “Antiques Roadshow.” If you have an item or collection that you are curious about, then he is happy to provide free and confidential advice. Kelly can be reached at (603) 498-9530 or by email at kwright@freemansauction.com.


Birds of a feather …

words about pictures

by Guy Capecelatro III

courtesy photos

The Jittery Light of a Fire

This fall, the Portsmouth Public Library celebrates the 10th anniversary of its Parrott Avenue building. Their commemorative logo features an interpretation of the Beecher eagle that hangs in the library stairwell. The carving dates from about 1824, and is attributed to Laban Beecher, a 19-year-old carver from Boston (who, according to various sources, worked with Bellamy on occasion). For over 150 years, it capped Prescott Park’s Liberty Pole, a successor to the pole erected in 1766 at the time of the Stamp Act. You can purchase buttons and T-shirts with the eagle motif in the library, along with brand new library bags and car stickers, all made in the USA. The T-shirts are $15 and were screen printed by Black Sheep Design Company in Portsmouth. To see all the upcoming events and programs at the library, visit them online at cityofportsmouth.com/library.

It seemed on some summer nights the smells of swamp and heat and burning pallets would reach all the way from her Oklahoma past, across county lines and state lines and times zones, to Anna laying sleeplessly in her apartment bedroom, thick with city sounds muted by the whirring fan. She wonders if they were just caught in her head, only to be dislodged occasionally to make their way from brain to nose, or if those smells were merely hallucinations generated by recessed thoughts. Everything Anna really knew about men came from her father’s

ramblings next to the fire with the bug light zapping rhythmically: they didn’t like questions or asking questions or being forced to choose between things. She knew men only had so much blood and couldn’t properly maintain both an erection and brain function. Watching her father in the jittery light of the fire Anna learned so many things that proved to be untrue and that she couldn’t seem to unlearn. And also the things that were true. There’s yelling on the street and Anna turns off the fan to better hear. Someone had said something unflattering or sugges-

tive to someone’s girlfriend. “I’m drunk,” the guy with the yellow hat was saying. “When you’re drinking you say what you really mean,” says the other guy, pushing his forefinger into the other guy’s chest. “I don’t know what I mean when I’m drunk.” He coughs or spits something up. “I don’t know what I’m saying right now.” Anna turns the fan back on, pets the calico at the end of her bed and goes to the bathroom. Drawing her bath, she looks at the yellowing picture of herself and her father, taped above the mirror. Since leaving home at 15, she’d never been back and imagined her father’s ruddy complexion paled over time, Oklahoma dirt embedded in the deep lines of his hands and his course, straw-like hair thinned like his own father’s. She looks at the skirt they’d made together and the lei her grandparents had brought back from Hawaii. She notices their shared features and sunken eyes and the cigarette dangling between her father’s fingers. She remembers sneaking them in the tree house and getting caught and the hardness of her father’s hand on her soft face. Anna lays in the cool water with her skin pruning and wishes for some escape from the heat and the humidity and for sleep and to dream of a place she’d never been before. Guy Capecelatro III is a Seacoast songwriter/performer/landscaper who occasionally allows old photos to arouse his literary muse.

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Welcome to the Family Peter Squires invites the Seacoast home By Guy Capecelatro III, Photos by Jared Charney


pending childhood summers out on Star Island, part of the Isles of Shoals, Peter Squires developed a taste for the Seacoast area. After calling New York, Texas and California home, he found himself looking to switch things up again and settled in Eliot, Maine, and immersed himself in the rich, smalltown arts community. As a musician, writer and cultural enthusiast, he’s made a big impact in a short amount of time. He plays in several bands, worked at The Music Hall — one of the longest standing theaters in the country — and most recently started his own podcast, “The Family Room.” The Square sat with Peter Squires to learn about what motivates him and to discover what’s on the horizon. The Square: What brought you to the Seacoast area? Peter Squires: Initially I was introduced to Portsmouth as a result of going to Star Island in the summers. I would vacation out there with my family every year since 1987. The Square: How old were you then? PS: I turned 6 that summer. We’d come to Portsmouth and go to Annabelle’s for ice cream and then go out to Star Island for the week and it was always this special place. Then, when I worked out there right after college, I actually got to know the town. That’s when we would come to town and go to the Market Street Tub Shop and skinny dip and drink 40s. I did a last hurrah summer working out there in 2010 when I was really too old for it — it’s more for college-age people. I turned 29 that summer which made me a total grandpa as far as the staff on Star Island was concerned. During that summer I had left New York and was looking for somewhere else to be, killing time on Star Island, and wondered, “what if I just stuck around this area?” The Square: Well, that seems convenient. PS: One of my friends who I worked with on Star Island was Wren Kitz — he’d gone to UNH and knew a little more of the ins and outs of the area. For my birthday that summer he took me out to that pond with the rope swing in South Berwick. There was something about that little trip that showed me there was more to the Seacoast than just what I had seen in downtown Portsmouth, and it

got me excited about living around here.

the peace and solitude of a different lifestyle.

The Square: It’s intriguing to think of you visiting a place for such a long stretch of your life that wasn’t your home. From my perspective, Star Island hasn’t changed that much in the 10 years I’ve been going out, but how has it changed for you?

The Square: I’d imagine with all the time you spent out there as a kid and then working as a young adult that you have a real sense of ownership and know all the ins and outs of the island. How has that changed?

PS: I guess my perspective of Portsmouth hasn’t changed that much aside from the changes that everyone talks about; from the grimy port town to the shiny tourist town. But how Star Island has changed is much more noticeable: it used to be that when you went out there you were completely detached from the world. They had one telephone that was for emergencies and that was it. I think it’s been a real struggle for them to figure out how to maintain that spirit while recognizing that people can’t detach from their stuff.

PS: Working out there you get to know so much more of the island than when you’re just a visitor.

The Square: Well, they can, they just choose not to. PS: Now there’s wifi all over the island and you can have cell phones and cell phone reception, but when I was a kid and there was complete detachment when you were on the island. I was just out there for a week, and staying connected to the outside world there is really easy now. It’s nice to be able to connect what you’re doing out there with what’s actually happening in real time, while also having

The Square: The seedy underbelly. PS: Yeah, literally. They call the staff area the Underworld. As someone who works there, you’re spending all your time under the hotel or the back part of the island where guests don’t typically go and now, transitioning back to being a guest, I’m not allowed to go to those places. To me, while I was working there, I felt like a big shot and I still want to be down with the young, college-aged, vibrant youth who are working there, but to them we’re old timers. I think for the people who live there all summer, it’s their home and we’re just stopping by. I think that’s one of the things that’s so cool about it; everyone there thinks it’s their special place. The Square: Having lived in a variety of places — Long Island, Brooklyn, Austin, San Francisco — what are some of the pluses and minuses of living in

I’ve had a chance to take a step back and think about what I want my life to be like and what’s important to me. There were moments when I thought I was starting from scratch and that I could do anything. But then I realized that’s not really true: I already know who I am. thesquarenh.com

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a smaller artistic community? PS: It’s definitely the smallest town I’ve lived in, other than a month in Puerto Rico, and it’s definitely a small-town culture. The assumption is that you’ll walk around and expect to bump into people you know. I’m much more likely to go to stuff by myself as I assume I’ll run into people. I think there are all of the pros and cons of small-town life in terms of that kind of familiarity, but not as much diversity in a lot of ways; obviously racial and ethnic diversity and a diversity of experiences. You can’t do as many different things or meet as many different people and eat as many different kinds of foods, but it’s really nice to be able to ask my neighbors to watch my dog and run into people I know all the time and feel more important, whereas in a city you just feel anonymous. There’s ups and downs to all of it.

The Square: What do you think you can bring to the local scene with something you might put together? PS: I guess the perspective of being both a musician and a music fan and also someone who has a pretty good sense of business acumen. I understand numbers and I’m a pretty logical, rational guy and I’d like to apply some of the development side of what I was doing at The Music Hall to a more artistic venture. It’s a matter of figuring out what’s needed and what this area can actually bear. And that might not necessarily mean a venue, because the small venues don’t seem to be killing it right now. I don’t proclaim to say, “I could do better.” Maybe we’re learning about this area by the fate of venues like 3S

The Square: It’s amazing to think of going from living in Brooklyn, in terms of space and having a yard and your connection with nature, to living in a rural area in Maine now. PS: I always think of them as a yin and yang where the things that are scarce and impossibly valuable in a city are plentiful here. Having a yard and quiet and fresh air, and I get to have a dog, and there are rooms in my house that I don’t use that much: I’ve got square footage galore. On the other hand, when I’m in Brooklyn I can get Middle Eastern food at three in the morning and I can see one of the greatest bands in the world any night of the week. The things that are abundant and the things that are scarce are basically opposite. The Square: Your first job coming off island was working at The Music Hall, which must have given you something of an insider’s perspective on the arts scene in the Seacoast and how, at least, the Hall worked and their relationship with bands. I know you’ve wanted to do something on your own for a while — have you given more thought to that? PS: It’s always present in my mind whether it’s the front of my mind or the back. I’d like to be a part of starting a thing, artistically: I haven’t totally landed on what shape that will take. I’ve had a lot of conversations with a lot of people about a lot of ideas and I’m pretty confident that one of these days one of them will turn into a thing.

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Squires interviews subjects in his home in Eliot, Maine, and usually finishes the conversation with a lightening round of quick questions

Artspace and Birdseye Lounge, who have awesome intentions and are bringing in great bands, but might not be as full as they’d like to be. Basically, what I know is that I’d like to do something that makes this area more culturally vibrant for artists and arts consumers because that’s the kind of town I’d like to live in. To me that’s what makes a town good; that it has cultural things to do, not that it has a thousand places to eat boiled fish. The Square: You’ve taken some time off from having a day job: how has that been for you and what has your time been like? PS: At first it was like a staycation, but I definitely started getting bored and restless and kicking

myself for making this decision — I thought I’d have more stuff figured out by now. But I’ve had a chance to take a step back and think about what I want my life to be like and what’s important to me. There were moments when I thought I was starting from scratch and that I could do anything. But then I realized that’s not really true: I already know who I am. I want to be involved with the arts The Square: One of the things that’s been filling your time is “The Family Room” Podcast. What has that experience been like? PS: I was reading some old blogs that I had written and thought, “I used to just write things for fun.” I was talking about trying to do more writing, and Anne, my partner, pointed out that I’m listening to podcasts all day long. I love listening to podcasts while I’m doing everything else, especially now that I don’t have a day job. From the minute I wake up, when there’s not someone else in the room, I’m listening to podcasts. She said, offhandedly, “Why don’t you do a podcast?” It was one of those moments that someone says something and a little light bulb pops up above your head and it sounded just right. At the same time I was thinking about my social life on the Seacoast and how over the past year Anne and I have talked a lot about whether we want to stick around or take off. There were moments when I thought I’d seen all I need to see of the Seacoast. Small town pros and cons, like I mentioned before — feeling like you know everyone enough to say “hello.” But then I realized that I don’t actually know everybody; I’ve only scratched the surface and I wanted to have more than a “hi, hello” relationship with people. Those two ideas were happening in a simpatico sort of way and I thought about interviewing people on the Seacoast — even people I know — with the hope of getting to know them better. That aspect has been a huge success because it’s pretty rare to reach out to someone you know a little and ask them to come over and talk for an hour. It gave me a reason where it didn’t seem awkward. The outreach of sharing those conversations put myself out there in a way that gets others to get to know me better as well. It’s made me feel more open to this community and changed my mindset to that of someone who has roots, but wants to bury them


even deeper as opposed to someone who has roots that are flapping in the wind. That was the goal and it has been successful. The Square: Some of the most fulfilling things are simply things you enjoy doing and it sounds as though it’s really changed your perspective on people as well. It’s interesting to be walking around town and realize everyone you see has a story and 99 percent of the time you don’t know the story, even with people you know relatively well. It’s been fun for me, as a fan of the podcast, to hear about people I don’t know that well. PS: Me too. I figured out pretty early on that it’s more fun for me to interview people that I don’t know as well and hope that any of my friends who I haven’t invited on don’t feel insulted. The more authentically interested I am in it, the more interesting it will be for the listener. The Square: You’ve done a little producing lately, which is exciting: the “Vesper” EP and the new “Noodlemen” album. What has that been like?

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PS: During this non-working time I’ve also been able to do more creative stuff, not only for myself, but to be more generous with my time and to collaborate with people more. [I recorded the] “Vesper” and the “Noodlemen” albums, and it was the first year that I worked on more than one RPM Challenge album. I helped Chris Greiner with the Tiny Bit Huge compilations. It’s enabled me to say “yes” to things in a way that feels really good and in a way that I would like to try and maintain, even when I have a daily routine hammered out. I’m very, very grateful to be in the position that I can afford to take a couple of months off from having a day job. Even though I have a real lazy and gluttonous side to me, I don’t want to sit at home watching “Game of Thrones” and eating all the pizza I can. I want to make good use of this time and at the end I want to build something out of it. Even though there’s no concrete thing yet, I can feel the momentum of it and I feel closer to something happening. Who knows, maybe by the printing of this issue that will have happened or the ideas will have disappeared, but I feel a sense of momentum. p To hear Peter Squires’ podcast, go to thefamilyroompodcast.podomatic.com.

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An Artful Evolution

Kathleen Soldati Brings Portsmouth History to Life By Chris Hislop, Photos by John Benford or Kathleen Soldati, life in New Hampshire began in 1975 when she moved with her newly wedded husband, Lincoln, to Warner so that Lincoln could attend Franklin Pierce Law School. On the hunt for work, Soldati was accepted into a management-training program with United Life and Accident Insurance Company in Concord. Upon completing the program she took a full-time position with the insurance company managing, editing, writing and shooting photography for two award-winning monthly periodicals. While taking care of her work duties at United Life, Soldati also started up her own consulting operation. It was also around this time that the Soldatis moved from Warner to Dover and became full-time residents here on the Seacoast (later becoming longtime residents of Somersworth, and more recently, of Portsmouth). It’s upon launching her own freelance initiative where we begin to understand the infinitely interesting and winding path her life has taken since. You see, Soldati has long been a well-connected mover and shaker, finding full-time employment through clients she has once had under her own guise, be it as a consultant or professional PR representative. After her corporate experience came to a close with United Life, she has spent nearly the entirety of her career working in the non-profit sector, and being major local advocate of the arts on a personal level, as well as in the various roles she’s taken on. The arts were no foreign territory for her, however. So these opportunities have been served well by both sides of the equation.

“I think part of it with the arts is that both my parents were performers,” Soldati says. “My mother was a nightclub singer — she sang with an orchestra, and my father was a tap dancer. So I was raised with performance — and the arts — all around me. In fact, we were required to each play an instrument. We had to take lessons, we were all in a choir.

in Dover. In 2015 she re-launched an old love of hers — DJing on 91.3 WUNH in Durham (she had previously had a show on WUNH from 1981-1990). It’s safe to say that Soldati has made herself right at home here in New Hampshire, taking hold of whatever moves her and incorporating it into her life; recreationally and professionally.

If you see her around town, ask her about her Nelson Mandela story. Or ask her about the importance of following your own bliss. She’s incredibly approachable and has a knack for introducing and connecting everybody in a room. Some of my siblings were in bands, one ran a coffee house, some have their own record labels, we had to learn how to dance — it has always been a part of our lives.” It’s here that we’ll note that Kathleen Soldati has 13 siblings. She’s also the mother of four children, and the grandmother of two grandchildren. In short, the family is quite large. Soldati herself has long been a noted performer here on the Seacoast, singing in such establishments as the Portsmouth Hilton Garden Inn, the Cliff House in Ogunquit and the late Biddy Mulligans

“When I moved here I fell in love with New Hampshire,” says Soldati. “While I was living here I fell in love with Portsmouth. While I was falling in love with Portsmouth I was looking for work. When I was at the insurance company, it was the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen that had approached me and asked me if I could do some volunteer work for them. The volunteer work became a freelance contract, the freelance contract became a job, the job became moving up the ladder, moving up the ladder became the Executive Director ... I don’t know, it’s funny, I remember someone asking me

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years ago, ‘Is there any thread that runs through your resume?’ To which I replied, ‘I only do what I want.’” Soldati is well known on the Seacoast for her work at The Music Hall where she served as the Director of Marketing from 2006-2013, and later as a Public Relations Specialist from 2013-2014. After her post at The Music Hall, Soldati re-launched her business SoldatiPR, through which she was asked by the Portsmouth Historical Society to help Discover Portsmouth with an exhibit they were running with the Scheiers, the renowned pottery artisans who worked with the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen. After the departure of former Discover Portsmouth Executive Director, Maryellen Burke, Soldati was asked to step into the role as Interim Director. It naturally evolved into a full-time Executive Director position: an arts-fueled challenge she willingly accepted. “I think art as a consumer is all pleasure,” Soldati proclaims. “It’s wonderful. Bringing people to it?

It requires more thought. What are we presenting? Who is our market? What are they reading, watching, listening to, belonging to, paying attention to? How am I going to connect with them? With music, and things that might be on edge, it’s the idea of being a tour guide. You might be on the edge of a cliff, and your job is to make sure nobody is going over the edge (laughs). You want to bring them along with you. It requires more thought, which I find quite interesting. At the end of the day, what’s meaningful for me is what’s meaningful in other people’s lives; whatever that meaning may be.” If you see her around town, ask her about her

Nelson Mandela story. Or ask her about the importance of following your own bliss. She’s incredibly approachable and has a knack for introducing and connecting everybody in a room. She’s good like that. In many ways, she’s one of Portsmouth’s biggest advocates and appreciators of the culture that exists in these parts. “I’ve never thought about living any other way. This is the water I’ve always swam in. I never think of it as, ‘Oh, I need to get art and have it in my life.’ It’s just here. It’s just part of everything. It’s all around us. There’s so much to enjoy. And what’s life without enjoyment?” p

Soldati’s arts background combined with her love for the Seacoast area made her a natural to lead Discover Portsmouth.

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E G A S S E M A H T I W C I S MU

O T G N I H MARC

amma Goun èse LaGby By ThérPh Roger otos

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’ve always loved the joyous world music of street bands. My first memorable experience was as an 11-year-old girl living in West Africa. We were celebrating the lunar eclipse. Men, women and children wove through the sandy neighborhood streets in a festive procession drumming and singing — an event that filled me with awe. Twenty years later, on my first visit to New Orleans, I was met on nearly every street corner by New Orleans-style brass bands, creating their iconic music with sousaphones and trombones. Today in New England, street bands continue the tradition, typically using music to convey a social message. Every fall, street bands from all over the world descend on Somerville, Mass. to participate in Honk! Festival, now entering its eleventh year. Festival organizers define street bands as “socially

soprano saxophone Deb plays some tunes on loween Parade. during the Portsmouth Hal

engaged — some in direct action and outright political protest, others in community building, be it performing for social justice or community-based organizations.” Our own Leftist Marching Band (LMB) was formed in Portsmouth in 2004 during Bush’s re-election campaign. The US had intervened militarily in Iraq. The division between the anti-war movement and supporters for the war was extreme. “The political climate was incredibly vitriolic. People would call you a terrorist for being against the war,” recalls Elizabeth Wolff, one of the band’s longest-standing members. A diverse group of players — some new to their instrument, some accomplished — came together and created the band. Since then there have been trips to Montreal to protest the deportation of immigrants, a trip to New York City for the People’s Climate March, many trips to Boston and countless gigs in New Hampshire. When Trump was endorsed by the New England Police Benevolent Association last December, the LMB led protesters in song. The band has proudly supported the African Burying Ground project since its inception, leading a New Orleans-style procession from South Church to the memorial park as part of the Juneteenth festivities, and recently participated in the Portsmouth Pride March and Kittery Block Party. “The LMB is now a Portsmouth institution — we use music to bring attention to and support causes like equal rights, social justice or preserving the environment. Community members who want to find expression for their beliefs through music can join us. We are an open band and welcome new members,” says LMB saxophonist John Mayer. Band rehearsals occur weekly, with a repertoire of more than 60 tunes played at events that range from Portsmouth’s annual July 4th celebration to gatherings in support of environmental causes such as the Maine and NH chapters of 350.org , a Jobs, Justice and Climate march in Boston and a Gulf of Maine action in Portland. “We work to ensure that our songbook reflects this variety so that when a gig comes up, we are prepared,” explains Wolff. The extensive playlist, which includes Cole Porter’s tune “Too Darn Hot,” the Disney song “Under the Sea,” traditional Sousa marches and Lady Gaga, is what sets the LMB apart. They also re-lyric standard tunes to fit the cause. For example, the “Flintstones” theme song, often performed at pro-labor rallies,

Today in New England, street bands continue the tradition, typically using music to convey a social message. goes like this: “Get rid of the minimum wage. Send the workers back to the Stone Age.” The band has used music to de-escalate potential violence. One such incident occurred during the height of the Granite State Patriots rally in Concord. “There was a war protest and then there was GSP to protest the protest. When we got there both groups were already assembled and it was incredibly tense, with people shouting back and forth at each other. So we just marched straight through the middle playing ‘America The Beautiful,’” says Wolff. p

Drum majorette and baton twirler Pat leads the Leftist Marching Band to a variety of events such as the Portsmouth Pride Parade and polling stations during elections. thesquarenh.com

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Greg on baritone saxophone entertain s crowds in Market Square along with the rest of the band at the Portsmouth Pride Parade.

music can join “Community members who want to find expression for their beliefs through Mayer. John member band says us. We are an open band and welcome new members,�

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John on bass saxophone and Mike on tenor saxophone rip out some tunes (even masked)!


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Master Class Bob Fernald swims his way to the top

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By Debbie Kane, Photos by Harry McCoy


B

ob Fernald is waiting quietly to be introduced to a packed room of caffeine-fueled creative professionals who’ve come to hear his story. Dressed in a collared shirt and pants — and looking a little nervous — Fernald, 49, is unassuming. You wouldn’t guess he’s a marathon swimmer. You wouldn’t guess he hadn’t swum more than a pool’s length until he was an adult. And you certainly wouldn’t expect him to talk, entirely without ego and even somewhat incredulously, about mastering — after age 46 — two of the world’s most challenging open-water swims: 21 miles across the English Channel in 2014 and, a year later, 28.5 miles around Manhattan. But as Fernald, of North Hampton, commands the attention of the room with his story about the odds he faced before and during his English Channel swim, one thing’s clear: this man is determined. His next challenge is swimming the 20.2 mile Catalina Channel, from Catalina Island to southern California, the third of the so-called Triple Crown of long distance swimming events. Ask Fernald for additional details and he doesn’t mention the channel’s unpredictable currents, its chilly waters, or that he starts swimming at night

to avoid high winds or the various sea creatures he may encounter. He’s laser-focused on training, so much so that he’s taken a break from his career; his current job is swimming. Fernald acknowledges that he’s an outlier. Friends call him “Mystery Bob.” “Swimming is the first physical sport that I’m good at,” he says. “I’m a victim of adult-onset swimming disorder.” Fernald’s early forays in the water were learn-toswim lessons at Portsmouth’s Peirce Island pool. As a kid, the Portsmouth native wanted to be on a lobster boat with his neighbor; his mom insisted he learn to swim first. And that was pretty much it. Fast forward 20 or so years. A business services executive, Fernald lived in northern California when he started running and participating in Team-in-Training endurance events. Friends convinced him to try a triathlon, which requires swimming, biking and running. To fine tune his swimming, he joined a Masters swim class. “I barely swam the length of the pool, then puked,” Fernald says. The swim coach shrugged it off. “Join us for coffee,” he urged. Fernald did. The group’s camaraderie inspired him to keep going. Soon, he didn’t need coffee dates for motivation.

After 20 years, Bob Fernald discovered his love of swimming while training for a triathalon. thesquarenh.com

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Friends convinced him to try a triathlon, which requires swimming, biking and running. To fine tune his swimming, he joined a Masters swim class. “I barely swam the length of the pool, then puked,” Fernald says. The swim coach shrugged it off.

Bob Ferland calls himself a “victim of adult-onset swimming disorder.”

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He started swimming longer distances, then entered more triathlons. Fernald eventually moved back to New Hampshire, but didn’t get back in the water until 2007. Then, he had a breakthrough swim where “everything came together” mentally and physically. He realized he could push through water effortlessly (which he attributes to good posture achieved through Pilates). “That’s when I knew I had to do something with this newfound skill,” he says, and set his sights on swimming the English Channel. When he’s in the water, Fernald is constantly thinking about the efficiency of his strokes. Inefficient strokes mean longer swims and more difficulties.

And he doesn’t do it alone. His partner Karil Reibold, his brother Jimmy and others ride alongside him in an escort boat or kayak, providing food, drink, emotional support or whatever else he needs. When Fernald broke his foot nine weeks before his English Channel swim, support was Karil standing on the beach with his crutches as he crawled into the ocean for a training swim (he was still on crutches when he swam the channel and completed it in 10 hours, 50 minutes, the fastest time for a US male). Fernald pays it forward by coaching others at the Portsmouth Indoor Pool; any money he earns goes towards efforts to preserve the pool. John MacMahon, a friend and training


partner from Exeter, marvels at Fernald’s dedication. MacMahon crewed for him during a 25-mile lake swim in Vermont. “Bob pops a rib head out during the swim and can only swim with one arm,” says MacMahon. “He swims about 45 minutes that way and has maybe 10 miles (5-7 hours) to go.” There was discussion between Fernald and MacMahon about whether he should quit (which he ultimately did). “How crazy is it that he was committed enough to even consider seven hours of one-arm swimming with a deformed rib cage,” MacMahon says. If Fernald completes the Catalina Channel swim, he’ll be one of only 125 people worldwide to complete the Triple Crown swims and the only person from New Hampshire. Characteristically, he’s humble about it. “That’s just craziness,” he says, shaking his head slightly. Not crazy. Determined. p At the time The Square went to press, Fernald finished his swim from Catalina Island to California in an incredible 9 hours, 15 minutes. — Ed

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THE THRILL OF THE CHASE by Kelly Wright, Photos by Kelly Wright and Meganne Fabrega

(Auctions for Beginners)


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othing beats the thrill of a country auction. For the serious collector, dealer or armchair enthusiast the promise of a great find is almost palpable. The Seacoast has an active auctioneer community selling $2 sofas to $10,000 paintings. No matter your budget, you’re sure to find something that catches your eye. Even if you don’t, the people watching alone is reason enough to go. Here’s a beginner’s primer on how to get the most out of any auction.

Easy Come, Easy Go

A box of old photos can bring new inspiration to an artist or a writer … for the right price.

Whether you’re shopping at a brick-and-mortar shop, a booth at an antique show or an online auction, chances are the merchandise you’re browsing has been through a live auction at some point. People sell at auction for a variety of reasons that can be summed up as the “4 d’s”: downsizing, debt, divorce and yes, death. We all have “stuff ” that eventually has to go somewhere, and an auction is a great way to sell a group of items to an interested audience in a relatively short time period.

Don’t Miss The Preview

Where else can you find a fully upholstered sofa with style? Hammer price — two dollars!

Whether it’s a more selective auction with a catalog or listing sheet, or if the items are simply held up and sold in a barn, you can be certain that the variety will be broad. A single sale can have a great work of art sold one minute and a box of old locks the next. This unpredictable variety is what keeps these auctions consistently well attended, in good weather and bad, week in and week out. Be sure to inspect your items fully during the exhibition (also called the “preview”) prior to bidding as the policy of most auctions is “as is and where is” — meaning once the hammer drops (when the auctioneer calls “Sold”) you own it. If you find that the box of books you just bought is full of mold or letters from Abraham Lincoln, congratulations — it’s still yours! thesquarenh.com

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A box of old locks can be a sweet find for a collector — or sold individually on eBay or Etsy. Buyer’s choice!

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A Bidder’s Checklist If you’re heading to an auction, then you might consider bringing a few things with you.

Pens: You’ll want to make notes on the listing sheet or catalog of which lot numbers caught your eye.

— and what number lot you’re interested in — an auction can be a long affair. Stay hydrated!

Reading glasses and or magnifying glass: You’ll want to take a really close look at maker’s marks and item condition, so unless you’ve got 20/20 vision, come prepared.

Your appetite: Most auction locations offer a selection at the snack bar, so whether you’re getting pie at the Dover Elks Lodge or spanikopita at the St. Nicolas Greek Orthodox Church, bring cash and your appetite.

Measuring tape: You better make sure that the mid-century credenza you just scored will fit through your front door, or you’ll be looking at a pretty nice tool chest for your garage. Water: Depending on the amount of items

A sense of humor: Have fun and don’t take it all too seriously! Sure, you may be up against some heavy bidding for the good stuff, but if that giant $10 painting catches your eye, then just go for it.

Buy What You Like

If the value goes up in time, great. If not, then you’ve owned and enjoyed a great item. The majority of buyers at auctions are in “the business” and run those brick-and-mortar shops, antique store booths or sell online. Many private buyers are intimidated by this, but really shouldn’t be. If a dealer is willing to pay $300 for that mid-century pottery bowl you’ve had your eye on, then chances are it will be at least double when you visit the shop next week. Of course, if what you’re bidding on is a “sleeper” (an item that all the bidders in the room have missed the value of), the item could be 10 times the auction purchase price. All auctions have a buyer’s premium, which ranges from 10-25 percent of the hammer (final auction) price. This is a fee added onto the hammer price and one of the ways the auctioneers makes their money. When bidding, pick your objects, know your budget — taking into account the buyer’s premium — and stick to your guns.

More on “The Sleeper”

To find a prince you have to kiss a lot of frogs. Patience and persistence go hand-in-hand when looking for the perfect object or the perfect bargain. Fortunately, the Seacoast area has auctions happening every week. The Dover Elks Lodge hosts a number of these auctions, such as Devin Moisan Auctioneers and Jacquie Allison Auctions. During

One well-seasoned auction goer came prepared with packing materials, a notebook and cash for pie at the snack bar. Kelly Wright holds up his $20 “sleeper” sconces. thesquarenh.com

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a recent sale there, in the midst of a cluttered table, I discovered an interesting pair of bronze sconces. Surrounded by old license plates, a set of glasses and miscellaneous handbags, these two beauties jumped right out. Even with slops of white paint at the edges, old frayed wiring everywhere and the maker’s mark obscured by plaster, the craftsmanship was still evident. As it turns out, the maker was one of the premier manufacturers of lighting and other decorative metalwork at the turn of the 20th century — E.F. Caldwell & Co. Originating in New York, works by Caldwell grace the homes of Vanderbilts, Morgans and Astors, as well as landmarks like the Waldorf Astoria and Rockefeller Center. Rich in Louis XVI-style detail and a brushed silver finish, they might be considered gaudy by some, but would have been the height of fashion in 1900 when they were produced. Knowing the history of the company and the pricing in a retail setting I was prepared to bid aggressively, but an auction, like dancing, needs a partner. With a single opening bid of $20 and no competing bids the hammer dropped and they were mine. Hindsight is 20/20, but for $20 how could I go wrong? A set of four is now on offer at the online design mecca 1stdibs.com. These are identical in every way to the pair I purchased except they are in a gold finish — and the current asking price? $3,800 per sconce. Will I be anxiously awaiting my next trip to the auction? You bet. p

Get Ready to Bid Buying or selling? Contact one of the many auction houses on the Seacoast (or Square contributor Kelly Wright) to find a new-to-you treasure, or give your own special piece a new home. For a full calendar of auctions, check out auctionzip.com. Boyd Auctions and Estate Appraisals 208 River Rd., Eliot (207) 439-6641 mainestateappraisal.com

Hap Moore Antiques-Auctions 611 US-1, York (207) 363-6373 hapmoore.com

Crown Auctions 892 Lafayette Rd. Seabrook, (603) 501-0823 crownauctions.com

Jacquie Allison Auctions 149 Main St., Plaistow (603) 378-0663 ja-auctions.com

Devin Moisan Auctioneers 67 Venture Dr., Dover (603) 953-0022 moisin-inc.com

Northeast Auctions 93 Pleasant St. Portsmouth (603) 433-8400 northeastauctions.com

Left: At a recent Devin Moisan auction, five boxes of letters and ephemera from the Graves family of Newburyport sold for over $3,800.

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When Portsmouth’s cultural commission set out to brand the city’s creative scene, they struck up an unexpected conversation about the arts. By Debbie Kane, Photos by Jason McKibben

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Going Big: Behind the Campaign to Brand Portsmouth’s Arts & Culture

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Taking it from the top: Duncan Craig, Chris Greiner, Mike Teixeira and Ken Dodge

n spring 2015, a group of Portsmouth creative industry pros gathered for a brainstorming session. Organized by Art-Speak, the city’s cultural commission, the group was charged with developing a marketing campaign defining the city’s eclectic arts and cultural scene. After months of talking and tinkering, they launched a concept on social media in mid-December: “A Tiny Bit Huge.” Within two days, A Tiny Bit Huge became a tiny bit controversial. What happened in the subsequent six months was an eye-opener not only for Art-Speak but the arts community as a whole. “A Tiny Bit Huge helped us discover the cracks and fissures in the arts community,” says Mike Teixeira, Art-Speak’s board president. “It fostered debate about who’s an artist and who isn’t. It’s a great example of how community conversation effects change.” It also laid the foundation for future opportunities to boost the city’s fiercely independent arts community.

Developing a strategy Teixeira and Duncan Craig are the type of guys you want developing your marketing strategy. They’re creative, smart and articulate. They’ve worked in Portsmouth for years — Teixeira as head of creative for Calypso Communications, a marketing and public relations agency, and Craig as partner and co-founder of Raka Creative, a digital marketing agency (he also grew up in Portsmouth). They’re passionate about the Seacoast, involved and eager to make a difference. So when Nancy Pearson, executive director of Art-Speak, wanted to expand the non-profit’s marketing efforts, she recruited Teixeira and Craig to ArtSpeak’s board. Art-Speak was founded in 2002, a result of Portsmouth’s cultural plan. The organization’s goals include promoting the city’s cultural offerings and creating resources to support local artists. Pearson, who’s also a Portsmouth city councilor, was keen for Art-Speak to do a better job of marketing itself, as well as raise money for its initiatives (the organization receives some funding from the city but is not a city agency). thesquarenh.com

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“We needed people who could take the organization beyond press releases and Facebook and make the community aware of what we do,” she says.

Brainstorming the brand Teixeira and Craig pulled together a group of like-minded, passionate people, including digital agency creatives, writers, a photographer and a designer/illustrator. Meeting over eight to nine months, the group tossed around ideas for marketing Portsmouth’s cultural community. “We wanted a rallying cry like ‘Keep Austin Weird’ or ‘I Love New York’,” says Teixeira. “Our goal to be inclusive was our biggest hurdle. Portsmouth is so many different things to so many people.” The group identified Portsmouth as a small city with a large array of cultural amenities — thus, A Tiny Bit Huge. Illustrator Matt Talbot of Brown & Company Design developed a logo and the concept was ready to be unveiled.

The Launch A Tiny Bit Huge officially launched with a crowd-funding page and a fundraising goal of $10,000. Funds raised would enable Art-Speak to build and maintain a dedicated website show-

Jesse Manfra shoots video as Mike Teixeira, center, interviews Birds Eye Lounge co-owner Michael Behrmann Wednesday, July 20, 2016. The video profile of Behrmann will appear on the A Tiny Bit Huge website.

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“We wanted a rallying cry like ‘Keep Austin Weird’ or ‘I Love New York’,” says Teixeira. “Our goal to be inclusive was our biggest hurdle. Portsmouth is so many different things to so many people.” – Mike Teixeira

casing local artists and arts organizations, sell branded merchandise to raise additional money and promote cultural events. A little more than $2,500 was raised the first week. Then, artists and local residents started to weigh in about the campaign on social media; reactions were mixed. Some cheered the effort; some questioned a group of “non artists” trying to promote “working artists.” Others felt the campaign detracted from what they felt were real community issues, like lack of affordable housing and creative workspaces. “When I saw the concept on Facebook, my first reaction was to ridicule it,” says Trevor Bartlett of Portsmouth. “I thought, ‘great, they’re trying to generate money on the backs of artists but they’re pumping that money into Art-Speak.’” Todd Hunter, a board member of Portsmouth’s Player’s Ring, understood both sides of the issue. “I think the initial resistance was natural because some artists felt their point of view wasn’t recognized,” he says. “That’s the beauty of the arts scene here — everyone owns it and is passionate about it.” The negative feedback galvanized Art-Speak. “The first question we asked our critics was ‘Can


Products sporting the new slogan are sold locally, including at Off Piste in downtown Portsmouth.

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we talk?’,” says Teixeira. He went on what Pearson calls “a listening spree,” meeting face-to-face with residents to hear their thoughts and explain the concept in depth. Bartlett was among the residents he chatted with over drinks. “He really made the case for getting behind the concept,” says Bartlett, now a self-described cheerleader of A Tiny Bit Huge. “I think Art-Speak is doing what it can to fulfill its mission and I think artists are coming around. It was inevitable there’d be pushback. Their jobs as artists is to see things others don’t.”

Website and beyond

With initial criticism quelled, Art-Speak forged ahead. To date, $8,000 has been raised, enabling Art-Speak volunteers to create and launch the Tiny Bit Huge website. The site includes videos about Portsmouth musicians, fine artists, dancers and others, as well as an easy-to-browse events calendar pulling listings from arts and cultural organizations. Themed merchandise with the Tiny Bit Huge logo is available online and through Portsmouth retailer Off-Piste; proceeds go directly to Art-Speak for artist promotions. Teixeira is especially excited about featuring music compilations by local musicians; the compilations are available for download on A Tiny Bit Huge’s website on a pay-what-you-will basis. He asked Chris Greiner, a longtime member of the Seacoast music scene and former executive director of 3S Artspace, to produce the compilations. Greiner, recognizing that many area musicians would benefit, agreed. He recruited co-producers for each album, musicians active in each genre. The eight compilations released to date range from “A Tiny Bit Jazz,” “A Tiny Bit Eclectica” and “A Tiny Bit

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“It’s been an important learning experience,” says Pearson. “If we hadn’t gone through this, we wouldn’t have learned what’s in the hearts and minds of our creative community.” Indie,” to “A Tiny Bit Americana” and “A Tiny Bit Heavy.” Most of the proceeds — 60 percent — go to participating musicians; the remaining 40 percent goes to Art-Speak to promote other artists and support A Tiny Bit Huge. Through his work with A Tiny Bit Huge, Greiner gained additional insight into the local music scene. First: it’s really vibrant. “We didn’t struggle to find good music for this,” he says. Second: Portsmouth’s changing demographics means A Tiny Bit Huge applies to the greater Seacoast, not just Portsmouth. “People like me who’ve been here for 15+ years, we remember the edgier, more rugged Portsmouth,” Greiner says. “For creative folks in their early 20s, that Portsmouth never existed. Younger artists say to me ‘we live in Dover or Rollinsford, we don’t play shows in Portsmouth.’ It hadn’t even occurred to me that that had happened.” Greiner notes that, despite initial skepticism, artists are excited to be part of the project. Public feedback has been good too: the site has had hits from 45 states and 42 countries.

The takeaway The final takeaway: launching A Tiny Bit Huge was worth it. “It’s been an important learning experience,” says Pearson. “If we hadn’t gone through this, we wouldn’t have learned what’s in the hearts and minds of our creative community.” Art-Speak plans to build on that awareness. During a State of the Arts presentation to the Portsmouth City Council this June, Teixeira referenced a 2010 Americans for the Arts (AFTA) survey showing that Portsmouth’s arts and cultural organizations generate $41 million annually for the city, roughly 4 1/2 times more money than similarly-sized cities. Yet the income doesn’t go to local arts organizations. Teixeira urged the city to reinvest more aggressively in arts and culture. “The city is full of talent,” says Teixeira. “We have big ideas.” A tiny bit huge, indeed. p

atinybithuge.com art-speak.org

Mugs, hats, stickers and more show Portsmouth creative scene pride.


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Game On Seacoast Designers Get Board By Larry Clow, Photos by Liz Davenport

It’s a Wednesday night at Diversions Puzzles and Games in Portsmouth, and Michael Freitag is hoping that this week, he won’t be too hard on his audience.

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’ve made it a little less brutal, because last time, everyone died right off the bat,” he says. Freitag sits at the head of a small table, a stack of handmade cards and custom dice in front of him. Gathered around the table are six players armed with pen and paper, ready for the latest test run of the card game Freitag’s been designing for the last few months. Based on the popular podcast “Welcome to Night Vale,” Freitag’s game casts players as interns at the community radio station of a small desert town where the surreal and strange are commonplace. Freitag deals out the cards and explains the rules, and it’s not long before the players find themselves fighting to maintain their sanity in the face of floating cats, a sinister dog park and the machinations of their opponents. And to Freitag’s surprise, no one dies in the game — but no one really wins, either. That’s all part of the process, though. Freitag is one of the dozen or so regular budding game designers who show up at Diversions every two weeks to get feedback, hash out ideas, show off prototypes, and, of course, play some games. “It’s one thing to go from saying, ‘I have an idea for a board game,’ to, ‘I’m going to release a product,’” says Kevin Craine, who’s been co-hosting the meet-up for three years. It’s become a hub for the Seacoast’s gaming community, a place to see locally made games before they become national hits and get a behind-the-scenes look at the setbacks and triumphs that come with designing games.

lucky streak It’s a good time to make board games. According to ICv2, a consulting firm that tracks sales of comic

Michael Freitag leads players through a demo of his card game at the Seacoast Game Designers Meet-up.

Freitag designs games in his spare time and home brews his own components, including custom dice.

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Meet-up host Kevin Craine is in the final stages of designing Robit Riddle, his cooperative storytelling game. He plans to launch a Kickstarter campaign for the game this fall.

books, board games, and other geeky pursuits, 2015 marked seven consecutive years of growth for the hobby game industry. Sales hit $880 million in 2014, according to ICv2’s data. In other words, gaming has leveled up. Games such as “Settlers of Catan” or “Cards Against Humanity” are popular because people are looking for social outlets, Craine says. Playing video games is too often a solo pursuit, he adds, even if you’re playing online with other people. “There are few games that focus on sitting down and playing with friends in the same room. I think people are craving that social piece, and board games are a great way to fill the void,” he says. More games and more gamers mean more game designers. Craine’s one of them — at a recent meetup at Diversions, he brought along the prototype for “Robit Riddle.” It’s a cooperative board game (that is, the players work together, rather than against each other, to win) that uses a Choose Your Own Adventure-style storybook to guide each session. He’s ironed out the rules and created almost all the components. His next step: a fundraising campaign on Kickstarter that he hopes to begin this fall. “With my games, I hope to bring people together, people who might not be gamers when they started,” he says. “I (want to do this) by creating memorable moments that last longer than just one game.” That’s the beauty of board games — no two sessions are exactly alike. A streak of lucky dice rolls can ensure victory or set the stage for a surprise defeat. Every choice yields surprising results and a host of stories to share after the game ends.

Craine shows off his latest developments for Robit Riddle, which he brought to the Origins gaming convention earlier this year.

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“For such a small city, the number of people interested in game design here is impressive� — Ben Swainbank

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pirates, villains, and other scoundrels When “Robit Riddle” eventually hits store shelves, Craine will be the latest member of the meet-up group to get his game on kitchen tables around the world. That’s what happened to Portsmouth game designer David Miller. He started designing his Mint Tin series of games two years ago. Miller’s games are small enough to fit inside a mint tin, easy to learn and endlessly re-playable — and they got their start at meet-up at Diversions. “It was my very first time going to a game design meet-up … and the suggestions were all excellent and drastically changed the game,” Miller says. Playtests and feedback sessions can smooth out unexpected quirks. With Mint Tin Pirates, Miller envisioned a game taking at most 10 minutes to play. When a playtest game went on for 30 minutes, Miller went back to the drawing board and began tinkering with new mechanics. Later, Miller went to Kickstarter to fund publishing Mint Tin Pirates and its companions, Mint Tin Aliens and Mint Tin Mini Apocalypse. At last count, he’d shipped some 6,500 games to 45 countries in the last two years, and he frequently gets photos from fans who’ve brought their Mint Tin games on hikes up Mount Washington and other far-flung locales. Another Portsmouth game designer, Ben Swainbank, has had similar success. He raised funds for his card game, “Villains and Vigilantes” on Kickstarter in 2013 and published the game last year. His and Miller’s games are on sale at Diversions. “For such a small city, the number of people interested in game design here is impressive,” Swainbank says. The number keeps growing. One of Freitag’s playtesters that night at Diversions is “aspiring game designer” Ron Glassman of Salisbury, Mass. It’s his second meet-up. “I’m here to learn about the challenges designers face and how to get started. It’s good to see where everyone’s thought process is,” he says. Freitag, meanwhile, is primarily thinking about the next round of changes to his game. After the game wraps up, Freitag asks for suggestions. This test went better than others, he learns, but also revealed a few mechanical wrinkles he hadn’t expected.

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“I care about how it functions and how the math works, and there’s way more to it than that,” he tells the players. But, like any game, perseverance is key. Craine, Swainbank, Miller, and others all have games that didn’t quite work — Craine had to abandon the very first game he designed because “everyone who played it hated it.” The Seacoast’s game designers remain focused on their next play. Miller is working on a fourth addition to his Mint Tin series, and Swainbank has

two games in the works. One, “Revolution Day,” takes place in a country torn apart by civil war, with players vying for control of the country. The other, “Squabble Quest,” tweaks the usual fantasy genre tropes. “You can meet Prince Charming, and if you kill him, you’ll lose your virtue — but you’ll get a lot of gold,” Swainbank says. As the old saying goes, if you see Prince Charming on the road, kill him. Or don’t. At least you’ll get a few hours of fun — and a good story — out of it. p

Top photo: David Miller’s mini board games, Mint Tin Pirates and Mint Tin Aliens, put big games in small packages. Bottom: Craine’s game Robit Riddle encourages players to work together to solve a series of mysteries.


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a creative

haven A Newmarket Family Builds a Home One Piece at a Time by Meganne Fabrega, Photos by Greta Rybus

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tep into the home of artist Kirsten Reynolds and her husband Peter Lankford and you notice the small-but-deliberate details right away. The coat rack shaped like puzzle pieces hand built by Lankford, the framed print of an installation piece by Reynolds, the delicate glass doorbell that announces a guest. There is a sense of serenity here, but not in the cold, calculated way that many modern houses have been designed. But this is not a house, it is a home. Reynolds and Lankford built their home in Newmarket in 1998, piece by piece as they could afford it. Reynolds calls it a “cleaned-up version of a Greek Revival home,” which reminds the couple of the architecture that surrounded them when they met at Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY. They worked closely with local woodworker and contractor Alan Mitchell, owner of the Homestead Woodworking School (conveniently located around the corner from their house), building and planning throughout the years as time and money allowed. It is also home to Soren (9-1/2) and Elsa (4-1/2), the couple’s children, who have free range of the surrounding for-

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est, the extensive vegetable garden and most importantly, the treehouse that is under construction, designed and built by Lankford with help from the family. If there is one running theme through the home, it’s creation. Reynolds’s main studio is above the garage-cum-woodworking shop where the entire family

Above: Elsa climbs up to the custom-built treehouse. Right: The family’s display of Russel Wright pottery sits in a case designed and built by Reynolds and Lankford. The chair and table were auction finds.


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works on projects. Her prints are run in the basement. The garden is bursting with cucumbers and lettuce that Elsa munches on before it can reach the salad bowl. The furnishings are clean and comfortable, found at auctions, bought on their travels or built by Lankford himself. Lankford, design director of footwear concepts at Timberland, creates pieces that look and feel as though they were hand-crafted in mid-century Scandinavia, complementing the many vintage midcentury pieces they have acquired. Lankford has built beds, tables and chairs for his family, as well as the bookshelves that line one wall in the living room. Reynolds, who has exhibited at 3S Artspace in Portsmouth and got her MFA at Maine College of Art in Portland, works in an airy, light-filled studio with 3D models of past, present and future installations. She is just shipping out pieces for her most recent installation at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum in San Antonio, a solo exhibit that integrates large-scale wood arcs made of bent, laminated wood, while the structure is made of wood that she painted with a faux wood grain finish. Previously, most of her installations were built with a variety of foam materials painted with a faux wood grain finish or printed with pattern. The final pieces can be up to 14 feet high and 20 feet long, and visitors are encouraged to explore within the installation. As a final act of her creative process, Reynolds creates a print based on the scale model of the installation. Reynolds and Lankford aren’t the only artists in the house. Elsa’s room features a painting of her own making, while Soren’s dresser sports a carefully crafted diorama. Books old and new are constant companions in the house with shelves in practically every room. Reynolds loves the Newmarket community, citing Vernon Family Farm as a favorite local spot. While the house is centrally located to Newmarket, Newfields and Exeter, it also feels off of the beaten path, its own little haven from the busyness of everyday life. To any visitor, the Reynolds/Lankford family home looks complete. But to them, the act of creation means that there is always something new around the corner. p Left: The dining room can be separated from the main living room by a sheer curtain. The table was built by Lankford. Right: Elsa sits surrounded by her own artwork on her bed, built by Lankford. The side table is by mid-century furniture designer Paul McCobb Top right: 1998, the year that the house was built, is carved lightly into the fireplace mantle. Lower Right: Reynolds and her daughter Elsa harvest lettuce from their extensive vegetable garden.

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Above: A rain barrel outside of the studio holds plants and Koi fish. Right: Soren’s room is bright and cheery. The bed was built by Lankford. Far right: A small chair was carved from a single piece of maple by Lankford. Below: Reynolds’ studio is above the family woodshop. Reynolds and Lankford built the two-story structure themselves as time and money allowed.

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g n i Ris e v o b A Women of the Seacoast Food Scene by Megan Grocki, Photos by Jessica Beebe

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Stephanie Deihl Pastry Chef Black Trumpet Many women in the restaurant industry feel compelled to choose between having a family or doing what they love. “It doesn’t have to be that way,” says Black Trumpet pastry chef, Stephanie Deihl. And she’s living proof. Deihl performs her pastry responsibilities with consummate professionalism while balancing the demands of three young children. After graduating from Wellesley College, Deihl went to work as an investment banker. She soon traded her Wall Street cubicle for a spot at Vermont’s New England Culinary Institute. From there, she honed her skills at L’Espalier and Flour in Boston and at A Voce in New York before landing her spot at Portsmouth’s Black Trumpet. Deihl values the camaraderie of working in a professional kitchen, particularly the teamwork and communication it requires. She is also energized by the physical nature of the job. Perhaps most of all, Deihl appreciates her boss, Black Trumpet’s Chef/Owner Evan Mallett. Though she moonlighted as a recipe tester for Mallett’s forthcoming cookbook (to be released in October), prior to taking on this job, Deihl hadn’t worked in a restaurant for seven years. She’d stopped just one month before her eldest child was born. She missed the work dearly but figured restaurant work was incompatible with parenting — if she wanted to do both successfully. Mallett’s willingness to add someone with non-traditional scheduling needs to his roster allowed her to get back to a place that she loved. Deihl joined the staff last winter. And so far, she’s flourishing in this vibrant kitchen. thesquarenh.com

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Phelps Craig Owner BRGR Bar

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When you think about the restaurant scene in Portsmouth, it’s hard to ignore the gravitas and influence of Phelps (Deick) Craig. Choosing culinary school over law school, Craig got her hands-on cooking skills and foundational knowledge of restaurant ownership at the New England Culinary Institute in Vermont. Craig’s eyes sparkle as she reflects on how Portsmouth has changed since she opened The Green Monkey at the age of 28. “It’s a whole new ball game. If someone wants to open a restaurant in Portsmouth now, they need to bring their A game.” Craig followed The Green Monkey with the South American-themed Brazo, and has since moved on to launch the wildly popular BRGR Bar, currently expanding to a second location in Portland, Maine.

Despite the progress women have made into other traditionally male-dominated occupations, men run most professional kitchens. But, over the years, Craig put in the kind of crazy long hours needed to establish an exceptional reputation and be taken seriously. She never shied away from taking control in her kitchens, and her menus reflect simple and rustic cuisine prepared with brilliant techniques that transform food into an unexpectedly decadent experience. Craig is thrilled that her creativity and vision have resonated with her guests and her restaurants have flourished. Plus, in an industry famous for burning out its creative talents, she has found a way to balance being at the helm of a vibrant business with having an active life outside of the restaurant.


Skye Bonney Sous Chef The Black Birch After talking to Skye Bonney for 30 seconds, her aura of unruffled calm may already have you feeling more relaxed. But don’t let her low-key character fool you. She’s laser-focused and level-headed, no matter how hot it gets in The Black Birch’s busy kitchen. Bonney’s culinary aspirations started early. As a young girl growing up in Mattapoisett, Mass., she spent many afternoons baking lemony Banbury Tarts with her grandmother. She worked in kitchens throughout college, and then her passion for cooking led her to the Culinary Institute of America (CIA). “If that’s what I was going to do, I wanted to do it right,” she recalls with a gentle, resolute smile. Bonney cut her teeth at several noteworthy Seacoast restaurants, and has been at The Black Birch since it opened in 2011. One of her most terrifying memories on the line involved “firing a lobster.” Several times during the peak dinner service, Bonney had to split a feisty live lobster in half, remove its tomalley and roe and slap the lobster onto a grill, all at top speed. When she’s not whipping up the Black Birch’s made-from-scratch fish and chips and inimitable deviled eggs, Bonney savors the opportunity to throw parties featuring a spit-roasted lamb rubbed with her secret spice blend. The meat is juicy and tender, with an impressive crust. “It’s gorgeous and ceremonious!” says Bonney, reminding us that good food is always more than the sum of its parts. thesquarenh.com

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Ellen Byrne Co-Owner and Chocolatier Byrne & Carlson Chocolatier From rich, buttery truffles to chunky caramel turtles you can sink your teeth into, Ellen Byrne creates chocolates using a combination of European and American-style craftsmanship. Everything that comes out of her kitchen is handmade in small batches using superior ingredients, and it all sells fast. Instead of bagging groceries or waitressing during high school, Byrne spent her after-school hours making chocolate. She’s been nurturing her confectionary creativity ever since. After studying fine art in college, Byrne shifted her artistic energy into chocolate making. She attended L’École Lenôtre outside Paris and then landed an apprenticeship at Bernachon, the prestigious chocolatier in Lyon, France. Byrne and Carlson has been an institution in downtown Portsmouth since 1999, the year Byrne and her husband/business partner Christopher Carlson set up shop. They dispatch wholesale orders to specialty stores nationwide from their production kitchen in Kittery, Maine. Byrne and Carlson has a fiercely loyal customer base, including one young man who pops in when he’s home from college. This particular fan started sampling Byrne’s chocolates as a toddler when his parents came in to buy holiday gifts. Byrne’s process is thoughtful, but her work is brisk. She cranks out countless handcrafted chocolates every week. And while her chocolates are superior, her manner is decidedly unpretentious. Byrne creates chocolates that are at once multidimensional and simple, refined and spirited and so enchanting that they may appear in her most devoted customers’ dreams.

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Mariah Roberts Owner Beach Pea Bakery Running a bakery is arduous work. But Mariah Roberts can’t imagine doing anything else. From her fledgling years selling her goodies at farmers’ markets, to her current reign at the wildly popular Beach Pea Bakery in Kittery, Maine, Roberts has never wavered on quality. At Beach Pea, people get clean food that they can feel good about eating, made from scratch every day. Like many other successful restaurateurs Roberts has no formal culinary training and didn’t study to be a pastry chef. Baking has just always come naturally to her, and ever since she can remember she’s opted to bake someone a pie in lieu of buying a birthday gift. She has a degree in human resources, which comes in handy when you’re managing a staff of over 40 people (31 of whom are women). Today she oversees a dream team of passionately creative bakers, and continues to look to history, or anyone’s grandmother, for gastronomic inspiration and extraordinary baking formulas. Roberts runs the Beach Pea with her husband/business partner Tom Roberts. Both are Portsmouth natives. Letting go of being the baker, Roberts delegated her responsibilities and created a self-sustaining structure, enabling the couple to start a family. As Tom says, “The owner of the Red Sox doesn’t need to know how to hit a home run.” Because of her hometown connection, Roberts feels moved to give back to the community. She co-chairs the local No Kid Hungry campaign that raises over $130,000 each year for at-risk children on the Seacoast. thesquarenh.com

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On Board with the Dock-to-Dish Movement A community seafood program partners with area restaurants to help save the oceans — and the local fishing industry — one obscure fish species at a time.

by Denise J. Wheeler Photos by Michael Sterling 64

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Captain Tommy Lyons’ boat, the Marion J., was built in 1982 and is named after his wife. Tommy fishes seven days a week starting June 1 to make the most of the short season that ends when winter begins.


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aptain Tommy Lyons passes three tuna fishing boats as he heads out of Hampton Harbor toward the once-legendary fishing grounds of Jeffreys Ledge. Twenty-five years ago, when he first started fishing commercially, Lyons would see up to 700 boats around him on this trip. Now, as he starts hauling his gillnets that stretch out for almost half a mile, there are no other boats in sight. As a result of current fishing regulations, designed to help repopulate the most consumed wild fish stocks such as cod and haddock, most of New Hampshire’s day-boat fishermen have given up. Of the 22 that went out of Hampton Harbor over the last decade, only two are left. Lyons continues to fish because he has changed his focus. His cod fishing days have been behind him for years. His primary catch now is spiny dogfish shark, also known as Cape shark. He will catch 5,000 pounds of it a day most days from July through September. He’s been doing this for four years. But he’s never eaten dogfish. His catch will be hauled to Tri-State Seafoods in Somersworth to be processed, which includes deboning and packing. Jeff Jordan has owned this plant since graduating from college more than 30 years ago. He’s an expert on fish. He’s never tried dogfish. After processing, Lyons’ catch will be delivered by Emma Frampton to a host of sites throughout Southern New Hampshire. Emma doesn’t eat fish; forget about dogfish. Part of Lyons’ catch will end up at 18 Seacoast area restaurants, including Cure, a critically acclaimed, intimate gourmet spot in downtown Portsmouth. It will be the special on a busy Friday night. As Chef Julie Cutting prepares it, she says she used to work at a Portland, Maine restaurant called “The Dogfish Bar & Grille.” “So you’ve had dogfish?” she’s asked. “Never,” she replies. That will change this evening. Dogfish, still referred to as “bait” or “trash fish” by some fishermen, is getting an extreme makeover. As she soaks the fish in milk, pan-sears it, plates it in a sweet potato purée with arugula and then drapes it in sage brown butter and an heirloom tomato, eggplant caponata, Cutting says she is eager to be adventurous. She thinks her clients are too. She sees that as part of the beauty of the Eat Local movement.

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Colin Barnard, crew member on board the Marion J., helps with the daily dogfish catch, which is limited to 5,000 pounds a day.


Cutting is one of a handful of area chefs who are making dogfish, and several other underutilized species unfamiliar to the general public, sexy in the name of sustainability. Cutting not only has a passion for serving local foods, she has the artistic culinary expertise to ramp them up to the level of gourmet. She is also part of New Hampshire Community Seafood’s Restaurant Supported Fishery (RSF) program. “My clients expect fresh, flavorful dishes that aren’t something they’d make at home,” says Cutting. “We love to push ourselves here at Cure and participating in programs like NH Community Seafood helps us to do that.” NH Community Seafood is a co-op made up of fishermen from Seabrook, Hampton, Rye and Portsmouth and consumers, all with a goal to protect marine resources and the local fishing industry by creating a sustainable harvesting strategy. Part of its plan is to bring the fish most prevalent in New Hampshire waters to the fish-eating public. That includes obscure species such as monkfish, whitefish, pollock and dogfish. Through the program’s Restaurant Supported Fishery program, restaurants pay in advance for a weekly delivery, never sure what that will be until days before. What the chefs do know is that they are buying the freshest fish possible while doing what’s best for the sustainable seafood movement. An added benefit is that fishermen get a bigger cut of their catch. The co-op’s been together for four years and is making headway. “These species people called ‘bait fish,’ used to be worth a dime or .15 cents a pound,” says Jordan from Tri-State Seafoods. “Now monkfish is worth over $2 a pound and pollock can be $1 or $2 a pound.” Tri-State processes 50- to 60,000 pounds of fish a week for supermarkets, wholesale buyers, restaurants and now for NH Community Seafood. He said he hopes the co-op will give small boat fishermen like Lyons a bigger reach as they fight the tide of popular seafood culture. “Restaurants are still ordering haddock, scallops and shrimp. I haven’t seen a major shift yet,” Jordan says. “But the NH Community Seafood program helps. Often, what the fishermen are allowed to catch is not what the consumer wants. By educatContinues on page 70

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Andrea Tomlinson, the general manager of NH Community Seafood, center, with fisherman Colin Barnard, left and Captain Tommy Lyons, right

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Jeff Jordan, owner of Tri-State Seafoods in Somersworth

The processing plant employs 25 to 30 workers to process 50,000 to 60,000 pounds of seafood a week.

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Through the program’s Restaurant Supported Fishery program, restaurants pay in advance for a weekly delivery, never sure what that will be until days before. What the chefs do know is that they are buying the freshest fish possible while doing what’s best for the sustainable seafood movement.


A Few Facts About the Dogfish

• Dogfish, or Cape shark, from the North Atlantic, is one of Europe’s most popular fish, used in the signature British dish of fish and chips. However, the species is only now beginning to show up on menus in New England. • Known as a sustainable choice that promotes a healthier marine ecosystem, dogfish is being transformed from the status of bait fish to regional delicacy thanks to community fish co-ops and eco-minded chefs. • According to NH Community Seafood manager Andrea Tomlinson, spiny dogfish shark, also known as Cape shark, compromise the largest shark fishery in the United States and Europe. They are found in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Dogfish migrate north in the Atlantic in spring and summer and head south for fall and winter. They can live up to 40 years. • Dogfish have no bladder, so they excrete through their skin. Because of this, Tomlinson says, the co-op ensures they are processed in a special way. She also recommends soaking dogfish fillets in either milk or a brine solution (1 cup salt to 1 gallon water) for at least an hour before cooking. This will both tenderize and hydrate the fillet and remove any odors that shark fillets sometimes emit. • Captain Tommy Lyons of the F/V Marion J. at Jeffreys Ledge has been fishing primarily for dogfish for four years. Fillets of dogfish are a reddish/white color and extremely lean with a sweet, mild flavor.

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Left: Julie Cutting, owner and executive chef at Cure restaurant in Portsmouth, preparing dogfish as the evening special (dish pictured at top right). Below: Customer Dave Wentzel samples it. Continued from page 67

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ing and exposing consumers, we hope it will drive up demand in restaurants and supermarkets for underutilized species.” Portsmouth, a city known for its farm-to-table restaurants and for locavores who flood the weekly Farmers’ Market and independent grocers, is ripe for a movement sourcing fish with the health of our environment in mind. Headlines here regularly call attention to imposed quotas on catches and we’ve seen cod, the poster fish of dangerously depleted species, get scarcer and more costly. Novel choices that expand dining horizons are exactly what area foodies are looking for and what our most acclaimed chefs are serving. Regional restaurants participating in the NH Community Seafood RSA program include Anneke Jans and Blind Pig Provisions in Kittery, Throwback Brewery in North Hampton and Moxy, Vida Cantina, Jumpin’ Jay’s Fish Café, The Franklin Oyster House, The District, The 100 Club, Row 34, and the aforementioned Cure in Portsmouth. Even

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the dining hall on Appledore Island at the Isles of Shoals has signed on. Andrea Tomlinson manages NH Community Seafood and is the conduit between the chefs and the fishermen who land their fish. She says the program is essential, not only for the good of the ocean, but also for the well-being of a profession that helped shaped New England. “The New Hampshire fisherman is an endangered species,” she says. “This program raises the income of fishermen while enhancing the experience of dining in this area. The people who eat at our participating restaurants go home with a more comprehensive knowledge of fish local to New Hampshire waters, they know these fish can taste as good — or better than — cod. It’s a culinary and educational treat for them.” Tomlinson says there’s a transparency and integrity to the program that area chefs are attracted to. “We know exactly where the fish is coming from. We know all our fishermen and we know they bleed dogfish in a way comparable to sushi, aiming for the best purity, firmness and taste.” In contrast, she tells the tale of a wholesale buyer

who purchases whole dogfish, ungutted, and soaks them in bleach water or peroxide as preservative. Buyer beware when you smell ammonia on your fish. Tomlinson says she keeps communication with restaurants direct and immediate via an online marketplace app created by the Three River Farmers Alliance, a regional network of farms and local producers, working cooperatively to market and distribute locally produced food. This allows timely updates about the catch and helps chefs plan, she explains. Back at Cure, the dogfish special is served to regular Friday night customers Chris and Dave Wentzel. They have never tried dogfish but are feeling intrepid, saying they trust Cutting as a chef, and share her values about local, sustainable food. “The texture is really nice. The taste is mild. It’s reminds me a smidge of lobster,” says Chris Wentzel. “Julie’s food is the best. She never misses. And she hasn’t with this.” p NH Community Seafood RSF has a partner program called the Community Supported Fishery that the general public can sign on to as well. For more information, go tonhcommunityseafood.com/what-is-a-csf.


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Good Eats! La Maison Navarre 121 Congress St. Portsmouth (603) 373-8401 mnpastry.com A rainbow of macarons await you at this little slice of France located in the heart of Portsmouth. Enjoy them at a table with a cappuccino or gather more in a box to take home or to a friend’s for dinner. They also offer a selection of viennoiserie such as croissants and brioche to sweeten your morning.

Sweet Treats

Halloween candy, Thanksgiving pies, Christmas cookies … ’tis the season for your sweet tooth. Fortunately, the Seacoast can satisfy whatever you crave whether it’s a beautiful bar of chocolate or a fresh fruit tart. Here are a few choice places to find the perfect pastry. Popovers on the Square 8 Congress St., Portsmouth (603) 431-1119, popoversonthesquare.com Want a custom-designed cake for a birthday or an assortment of petit fours? Popovers can fill your order for fancy desserts or a yummy cookie for that 3 o’clock slump. Insider tip: they make a vegan cake to order that is out of this world.

McKinnon’s Market Southgate Plaza Shopping Center 2454 Lafayette Rd., Portsmouth (603)559-5714, mckinnonsmarkets.com McKinnon’s may be more well-known for their meat selection, but did you know that their bakery case is fully stocked with cookies, whoopie pies, cheesecakes, cupcakes and more? This is the only place on the Seacoast that carries freshly made sweets by Modern Pastry in Boston, including fill-to-order cannolis.

Ceres Bakery 51 Penhallow St. Portsmouth (603)436-6518 ceresbakery.com For a sweet treat with that homemade taste, local institution Ceres Bakery is the place to go. Whether it’s a cupcake of the day or a standby Penhallow cookie, top off your lunch with one of the sweets from the glass case. For Thanksgiving and the holidays you can’t go wrong with their pecan pie or delicious Stollen.

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Figtree Kitchen at Strawbery Banke 14 Hancock St., Portsmouth (603) 766-4300, figtreekitchen.com You may not be able to pronounce their signature pastry kouign amann at first, but once you taste it, you’ll learn quickly in order to ask for another. A classic French pastry, this tasty, buttery treat is just one of many that are available at this cafe nestled in the center of Strawbery Banke. Fall/Winter 2016


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ristretto espresso drinks, chemex pour over coffee, cold brew coffee, teas, tea lattes, breakfast & lunch, beer, wine & coffee cocktails 603.501.1801 15 portwalk place profilecoffeebar.com

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Byrne & Carlson Chocolatier

photo courtesy bryne & carlson

121 State St., Portsmouth (603) 559-9778, byrneandcarlson.com Within weeks of setting up shop in Portsmouth, Ellen Byrne and Christopher Carlson quickly cemented their reputation for creating the finest chocolates and confections on the Seacoast. Locally and nationally their tasting bars and truffles have a loyal following (including this editor). Shipping for a holiday? Placing your order weeks in advance is none too soon.

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ennachocolate.com This special-order chocolate has food lovers on the Seacoast lining up for bars. Each batch is made from carefully researched and tested cacao, then shipped out to those who were smart enough to pre-order. Visit their website to reserve your own hand-crafted treat.

Cupcake Charlie’s 345 Rte. 10, Kittery, Maine (207) 451-9100, cupcakecharlies.com Birthday party, book group, supper club ... bring an assortment of cupcakes and you can’t go wrong. Choose from flavors such as Rockin’ Red Velvet, Peanut Butter Pleasure or Funfetti. Call ahead for their “Flavor of the Day.”

Yummies Candy and Nuts 384 US Highway 1, Kittery, Maine (207) 439-5649, yummies.com If you’re looking for the candy of your childhood, then Yummies has you covered. Walk into this shop and you’re surrounded by floor-to-ceiling displays of candy

from old-time favorites to the latest in Pez dispensers. Fill a bag with their huge assortment of salt water taffy and you won’t be disappointed.

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Rossi’s Italian Bakery 647 Route 1, Meadowbrook Plaza York, Maine (207) 351-8412, rossisitalianbakery.com Want a dessert that tastes like you’re visiting a bakery in the North End in Boston? Save on the gas money and go to Rossi’s Italian Bakery in York. Lobster tails, tiramisu and classic Italian cookies are just a few of the things on the menu.

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Beach Pea Baking Company 53 State Rd., Kittery, Maine (207) 439-3555, beachpeabaking.com Éclairs, seasonal cakes, buttery croissants and gluten-free treats fly out the shop along with their freshbaked breads and lunchtime specials. They even make a mini-eclair for those looking for just a taste.

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The Chocolatier 27 Water St., Exeter (603) 772-5253, the-chocolatier.com The Chocolatier has been on Water Street for decades, and with good reason. Its reputation for top-tier chocolates, barks, turtles and more is stellar whether it’s a small assortment for Grandma or a large tower as a corporate gift.

OPEN HOUSES FALL 2016: October 13 or November 9 6:20 p.m. Call or email Admissions today to check-in RSVP or for more information at (603) 777-1336 or admissions@heronfield.org 356 Exeter Road, Hampton Falls, NH www.heronfieldacademy.org thesquarenh.com

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Fall/Winter Events

Have an event you’d like to share? Please email details to editor@thesquarenh.com. We’d love to help you promote it!

OCTOBER RE◀◀WIND: Neon Dreams Dance Party, 3S Artspace Portsmouth, October 8 The RE◀◀WIND dance party returns with “NEON DREAMS,” an ’80s/’90s BLACKLIGHT Dance Party to benefit the ongoing operations at 3S Artspace. DJ James 808 from the RE◀◀WIND “Just Can’t Get Enough” ’80s Dance Party and “As If ”: A ’90s Dance Party returns to bring you the best in retro dance music and culture. Expect to hear the classic tracks and remixes from the eras you love the most. 3sarts.org

NH Fall Festival, Strawbery Banke Portsmouth, October 8 Strawbery Banke’s NH Fall Festival, presented each Columbus Day weekend since 2009, creates a traditional New England country fair complete with demonstrations from craftspeople, heritage breed and farm animal exhibits, farm animal and livestock demonstrations, presentations on heirloom seeds and food preservation tips, fiber arts, demonstrations and exhibits on historic crafts and industries, coopering, candle-making workshop in the Horticultural Center, garden tours and demonstrations. strawberybanke.org

Brett Dennen, The Music Hall Historic Theater Portsmouth October 21, 8 p.m. As part of The Music Hall’s popular Intimately Yours series, folk-pop singer songwriter Brett Dennen will be performing music from his latest album, Por Favor. Dennen’s work has been described as “urg[ing] maturing rock fans to turn up their radios and stay forever young,” by Rolling Stone.com.

Portsmouth Halloween Parade Portsmouth, October 31 After 20 years of Halloween madness, this Portsmouth tradition is still going strong. Put on a costume (the scarier the better) and head downtown for a raucous good time. spookyportsmouth.com

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themusichall.org

NOVEMBER “2016, A State of Mind: Boston Printmakers”

Lamont Gallery, Frederick R. Mayer Art Center Phillips Exeter Academy Exeter, November 1-December 10 Energy conservation, wealth opportunity, LGBT rights, global warming, issues of national security, immigration, animal rights, voter suppression or issues of privacy are some of the concerns facing our diverse community. The problems are immense, but the impact to the culture at large appears diffuse and trivialized by news media’s frantic bombardment of messages. We hope to establish a reasoned, well-placed forum for the issues at hand by asking members to consider participating in the next Boston Printmakers members exhibit titled “2016, A State Of Mind.” exeter.edu/lamontgallery

“What Artists Look Like” Discover Portsmouth Portsmouth, November 4-December 23 Who are the artists behind the work that graces Seacoast galleries? Photographer Jay Goldsmith’s latest exhibition, “What Artists Look Like,” is an homage to the days of crisp black-and-white images and handmade prints. The free exhibition features unique portraits of Seacoast artists taken over many months, including local artists in their studios such as Ken Fellows, Maureen Mills, Christine Coombs, Shawn Pelech and Alison Huber-Jewett. Portsmouthhistory.org

“She Will Lead: Women in Politics” New Hampshire Theater Project Portsmouth, November 4-13 Created and directed by Catherine Stewart, “She Will Lead: Women in Politics” is an absurdist adventure through American political history, focusing on three former US Presidential candidates: Victoria Woodhull (candidate in 1870), Margaret Chase Smith (candidate in 1964) and Shirley Chisholm (candidate in 1972). Starring Dominque Salvacion and Jordan Formichelli. nhtheaterproject.org

photo by greg west photography, halloween phot by p.t. sullivan

It’s time to get out and experience all of the events the Seacoast has to offer! Here’s a sampling of what’s to come, and for up-to-date event information, like us on Facebook at TheSquareNH or follow us on Twitter and Instagram @TheSquareNH.


My Brightest Diamond The Music Hall Loft Portsmouth, November 10 The Music Hall’s District Restaurant Singer Songwriter Series brings Shara Worden as My Brightest Diamond to the Seacoast to celebrate the release of her fourth album “This Is My Hand,” marking her confident return to rock music, one informed by her mastery of composition and a new exploration into the electronic. themusichall.org

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Portsmouth Holiday Arts Tour November 18-20 Visit local artists around Portsmouth in their studios as they open their doors to the general public and offer artistic gifts for holiday giving. Go to their website for a listing of artists and handy map. portsmouthartstour.com

Winter Farmers Markets Exeter and Rollingsford Starting November 19 The ground may be frozen, but that doesn’t mean that the local farmers put down their spades. Support local food and visit one of the markets held at alternating locations throughout the winter months. Seacoasteatlocal.org

Art on the Hill Kittery, Maine, November 26-27 You’ve driven by the Wentworth Dennett School Building up on the hill in Kittery, but have you ever been inside to visit the artist studios? This weekend is

The Bang Group’s “Nut/Cracked” The Dance Hall Kittery, Maine, December 9-10

your chance to meet artists and view their work. Artonthehillkittery.com

DECEMBER

“Beauty and the Beast”

The Bang Group’s “Nut/Cracked” The Dance Hall

The Music Hall’s Historic Theater November 30-December 18 The holidays are the perfect time to enjoy this enchanting, classic fairytale. Be swept into the romantic story of the Beast who could only be saved by love in this lavish Ogunquit Playhouse production based on the Academy Award-winning film. This eye-popping spectacle comes to life with unforgettable characters, stunning sets and costumes and dazzling production numbers, set to a score by Alan Menken and the late Howard Ashman along with new songs by Mr. Menken and Tim Rice. “Beauty and the Beast” has won the hearts of millions of people worldwide, running for 13 years on Broadway and earning nine Tony nominations, including Best Musical. “Be our guest” for this “tale as old as time,” the musical for all generations. themusichall.org

Kittery, Maine, December 9-10 It’s “The Nutcracker,” but definitely not as we know it. The Bang Group has taken every little girl’s favorite Christmas show and torn it limb from limb. Mixing Tchaikovsky’s original score with music by Duke Ellington, Glen Miller and others, the company turns the sugar-coated ballet into a percussive piece of dance theatre. Expect tap dancing, singing and some unusual pointe shoe activity. Nothing is sacred as “Nut/Cracked” twists and melds various dance traditions into an ode to American eclecticism that honors the power of the human urge to dance while riding Tchaikovsky’s voluptuous waves of rhythm. thedancehallkittery.org

The Button Factory 30th Annual Open Studios Portsmouth, December 2 (evening only), 3 & 4 See and be seen at this festive annual event, and take care of your holiday shopping (or pick up a little something for yourself) by purchasing handmade objects and art for the ones on your naughtyor-nice list. buttonfactorystudios.com

37th Annual Candlelight Stroll Portsmouth, December 3-4, 10-11 & 16-18 Strawbery Banke Museum lights up with candles in a grand historic style to celebrate the holidays in historic New England fashion. Bundle up as you walk from house to house, enjoying the sights in between. This is part of Portsmouth’s many Vintage Christmas events that include shows at The Music Hall, skating on Puddle Dock Pond, a gingerbread house display at the Discover Portsmouth Center and much more. vintagechristmasnh.org

Newmarket, December 10 The Wrong Brain Bizaare is a semiannual multimedia arts open market, pop-up gallery, music exhibition and creative celebration! We aim to bring you the strange, unconventional, underground, alternative and emerging of the Seacoast. wrongbrain.net

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photo by yi chun wu

5th Annual Wrong Brain Holidaze Bizaare


Writers on a New England Stage: Mario Batali

courtesy photo

The Music Hall’s Historic Theater Portsmouth, November 20 Don’t miss hearing from Mario Batali about his just-released new cookbook — a delicious deep dive into American regional cooking with 250 recipes from San Diego fish tacos to Boston cream pie. Over two years in the making, with Batali searching for truly delicious recipes from all corners of the US, this definitive cookbook features the best America has to offer, with an emphasis on simpler recipes, celebrating the treasures of the state fairs, the local rotary clubs and immigrant ethnic groups. Covering the Northeast/New England, the Mid-Atlantic, the Gulf Coast, the Great Lakes, the Heartland, the Southwest and the Pacific Coast, this book will share everything from the BBQ styles of Texas, the Smokeys and the Carolinas, to the seafood soups from Yankee Boston to the spicy gumbos of the Gulf Coast and the berry pies of the Pacific Northwest. themusichall.org

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What The? Can you solve this photographic mystery?

It’s been 40 years since the old gang got together. We’ve lost a lot of friends since then, so seeing everyone here is that much sweeter. We made it through wars, quite a few presidents and the damn hippies to come out the other side with grandchildren, pensions and a few aches and pains — but hey, no complaints here. Thank God for name tags, because while I recognize lots of people from seeing them at the counter at Woolworth’s or at the post office, some folks 80

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moved away and just came back to good old Yoken’s to reminisce and shake hands with the past. Hip hip hooray for the Portsmouth High School Class of ’39! Do you recognize anyone in this photo? Maybe a grandparent, great-aunt, neighbor or old friend? If so, then James Smith, photographic collections manager at the Portsmouth Athenaeum, would love to hear from you: he can be reached at (603) 431-2538 or via email at jsmith@portsmouthathenaeum.org.


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Historic Theater: 28 Chestnut St, Portsmouth, NH Loft: 131 Congress St, Portsmouth, NH B2W Box Office: (603) 436-2400 • TheMusicHall.org

Photos: David J. Murray/Clear Eye THE MUSIC HALL presents THE OGUNQUIT PLAYHOUSE production of

Member discounts available

Be our guest this holiday season! With stunning costumes and sets direct from London, Broadway actors, and a whole lot of holiday magic, it’s the perfect way to get into the spirit of the season. PRESENTING SPONSOR:

Groups of 15 or more get great discounts, call 603-766-2182 for more information. Perfect for business outings & family gatherings!

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NOVEMBER 30 - DECEMBER 18 • HISTORIC THEATER $42-92, tickets start at $32 for ages 18 & under

The Square NH Fall 2016