The Hippo


Feb 27, 2020








Courtesy photo.

Nashua’s holiday stroll returns

The 22nd annual Winter Holiday Stroll in downtown Nashua, happening Saturday, Nov. 28, will kick off at 5 p.m. with a candle-lit procession from City Hall to Railroad Square, followed by a tree lighting ceremony around 5:45 p.m.
“This year, we’ve got a number of new features,” said Paul Shea, executive director of Great American Downtown in Nashua. “For the first time, the Winter Holiday Stroll has a theme … Light of Community. The theme of light is one that is touched upon across many different winter holidays, including Hanukkah and Christmas and Kwanzaa.”
Light and enlightenment also feature prominently in the traditional Indian holiday of Diwali, which Shea says falls close to the other holidays this year.
“The Indian population here in Nashua is growing quite quickly,” he said, noting that Indian-Americans make up about 4 percent of the city’s population already. 
Shea said State Rep. Latha Mangipudi and other Indian-American community leaders helped organize the event, which will include Indian sand art demonstrations as well as music and dance from Bollywood.
“We have quite a varying selection of music genres including Indian performers, but we’ve also got some great church choirs that will be performing at different venues, bell choirs, jazz artists, big band brass, rock as well as some eclectic artists that will be playing,” Shea said.
Different sections of the stroll will feature ice-carving by the Manchester-based Ice Breakers, a FIRST robotics demonstration and the Festival of Trees, with a dozen decorated trees near the Hunt Memorial Building and Santa and Mrs. Claus greeting children and families inside.
“We will also have an area dedicated to animatronic, ride-on animals including a moose, polar bear, reindeer and a white tiger,” Shea said.
According to the event’s Facebook page, there will also be dance, theater, magic, karate and stargazing. The event is free, and much of the downtown area is closed to traffic for the evening. 

Downtown Delights
Karaoke, selfies and more in downtown Concord

By Ryan Lessard

 The 23rd annual Midnight Merriment in Concord, happening Friday, Dec. 4, from 5:30 p.m. to midnight, will feel like a new experience thanks to a redesigned downtown with broader sidewalks and new street lamps.

“Our main street has a brand new streetscape,” said Susan Sokul with Intown Concord. “[Visitors are] going to enjoy these wide, well-lit and decorated main streets.”
There will be 19-foot-wide sidewalks with 25-foot-wide plaza areas, and each of the 50 new street lamps will be decorated with a lighted wreath.
“There will be so much room for people to stop together and chat,” Sokul said. “It’s not going to be cold and dark; it’s going to feel warm and well-lit.”
And all that added room means there will be several new features this year, including karaoke with an animated snowman, the “Selfie with the Elfy” stall, pop-up raffles to win Downtown Dollars, beard contests and live music.
“There will be carolers strolling and caroling, but also the street is alive with holiday music that is piped north to south,” Sokul said.
A giant Christmas tree and nativity scene will be installed near the Statehouse, and Santa Claus will be at the Eagle Square atrium from 6:30 to 8 p.m. 
Also at Eagle Square will be the Giftapolis craft fair with more than 20 local craftspeople showcasing their work.
Liza Poinier with Intown Concord says Midnight Merriment takes place in the middle of the Discover Downtown Holiday Series, which includes some after-hours shopping nights on Dec. 10, Dec. 11, Dec. 17 and Dec. 18, during which stores downtown will remain open until at least 7 p.m.
“It’s just a little extra opportunity to do shopping, because who has time during the day?” Poinier said.

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