Berry Delicious

Berries!

Almost time for strawberry and blueberry seasons

By Zachary Lewis
zlewis@hippopress.com

‘Tis the season where farms invite ordinary people to come onto their land to take part in the berry harvests.

Although last summer may have been a slight disappointment for berry aficionados, this year’s harvest is appearing to be much better.

Samantha Fay, Farm Stand Manager at Sunnycrest Farm (59 High Range Road, Londonderry, 432-7753, sunnycrestfarmnh.com),is positive about this year’s crop of berries.

“Everything seems to be going really well this year. Last year was pretty devastating due to the late frost that we had … strawberries last year with the rain was really bad,” Fay said.

It was the worst of yields but now it’s the best of yields in this tale of two berry seasons.

“This year, everything looks good. We haven’t had a frost and we haven’t had the really really cold temperatures, so all the crops thus far look really good,” Fay said.

Future pickers should keep an eye on the weather.

“As long as we don’t get too much rain, the strawberries should look great,” Fay said. “Right now, fingers crossed, everything looks great.”

Not all berries grow the same way, though, and depending on foraging style, certain berries may be more fun to pick than others.

“Your strawberries are really low to the ground, so you’re more down on your knees harvesting them, where[as] raspberries, they’re a higher bush, so people can walk through those and pick at their height, which is nice,” Fay said. Since Sunnycrest only has a few rows of blackberries, visitors will only be able to pick these up at the farmstand when they do ripen.

The schedule typically flows from strawberries to blueberries and cherries to raspberries, then peaches and finally apples. A family could pick berries all summer long at the many farms and farm stands in the state.

“I think that it’s a really nice family activity for people to do and it’s really important for people to be able to have access to fresh fruit,” Fay said. “It’s nice to be able to harvest your own fruit and bring that home, because you have the satisfaction of seeing where it grows and being able to take it home and have it yourself.” But how much of the tasty reward can one bring home? A few ounces? A couple pounds?

“Maybe like 80 pounds at once just for a regular customer that comes in because we have some people come in that like to jam, so they’ll buy a good amount for jamming,” Fay said. “I’d say like 80 to 100 pounds for some people. But it’s not like an everyday thing…. That’s their one pick for the season when they make their batch of jam.” Ten to 20 pounds is a more typical amount for people to acquire in a single visit.

The delicate dance of berry harvesting is not for the faint of heart, but it is worth the effort. “They’re definitely a difficult crop to grow. They take a lot of care and the weather definitely plays a huge factor because they don’t like too much rain. It’s very rewarding when you get a great crop but it does take a lot to grow them. And we enjoy it,” Fay said.

Where to pick your own berries

Here’s a list of local farms that plan to offer fresh berries for pick-your-own throughout this upcoming season — we’ve included those that will have everything from strawberries and blueberries available for picking to raspberries, blackberries, cherries, and even peaches at some locations. Do you know of any in our area that we may have missed? Tell us about it at food@hippopress.com.

Apple Hill Farm

580 Mountain Road, Concord, 224-8862, applehillfarmnh.com

What: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, black currants, apples

When: Projected opening date is around mid to late June, starting with pick-your-own strawberries, then blueberries from early July to early September, raspberries from mid-July to early August, black currants from late July to early August, and apples from late August to mid October, according to their website.

Applecrest Farm Orchards

133 Exeter Road, Hampton Falls, 926-3721, applecrest.com

What: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peaches, nectarines, pears

When: The farm stand is open daily 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; projected opening date TBA for pick-your-own strawberries will be around mid-June; followed by blueberries in early July and raspberries in mid-August; peaches, nectarines and pears early August through mid September, according to their website.

Bartlett’s Blueberry Farm

648 Bradford Road, Newport, 208-270-0466, bartlettsblueberryfarm.com

What: blueberries

When: Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and the picking season is from mid-July to August; the self-service farm stand is open now from 9 a.m to 5 p.m. daily, or by appointment, offering items like blueberry jam, local maple syrup and honey, according to their website.

Bascom Road Blueberry Farm

371 Bascom Road, Newport, 359-7703, bascomroadblueberryfarm.com

What: strawberries and blueberries

Expected hours: The farm store is open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The farm is offering pick-your-own strawberries for limited days in June to early July. Pick-your-own blueberries are expected to happen from July through September, according to their website. 2023 pricing, according to their website, was $12 for a small bucket, around 3 pounds, or $22 for a large bucket, which was around 6 pounds.

Beaver Pond Farm

1047 John Stark Hwy., Newport, 543-1107, beaverpondfarm.com

What: blueberries and raspberries

When: Daily 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., weather permitting, call on the day for conditions. Their season usually begins between July 1 and July 10 and typically runs through July and into early August, according to their website. They charge by the pint, not the pound, and offer free containers as well as water to pickers, according to the website.

Berry Good Farm

234 Parker Road, Goffstown, berrygoodfarmnh.com

What: blueberries

When: Anticipated to be open Wednesday and Thursday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. as well as Friday through Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Their pick-your-own blueberries will likely start around mid-July, according to their website.

Berrybogg Farm

650 Province Road, Strafford, 664-2100, berryboggfarm.com

What: Blueberries

When: Pick-your-own blueberries will likely start sometime shortly after the Fourth of July, according to last year’s dates. Last year’s prices were $3.50 per pound (seniors 65 and older and military $3.40 per pound), and if participants pick 10 or more pounds the price will be $3.25 per pound, according to their website.

Brookdale Fruit Farm

41 Broad St., Hollis, 465-2240, brookdalefruitfarm.com

What: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, black raspberries and blackberries

When: Pick-your-own strawberries are expected to be available around mid to late June, followed by blueberries and raspberries by early July and blackberries and black raspberries into August, according to their website.

Carter Hill Orchard

73 Carter Hill Road, Concord, 225-2625, carterhillapples.com

What: blueberries

When: Pick-your-own blueberries will likely start sometime in July, according to their website.

Devriendt Farm Products

178 S. Mast St., Goffstown, 497-2793, devriendtfarm.com

What: strawberries

When: Pick-your-own strawberries expected around the second or third week of June and they will have Pick Your Own boxes at a cost of $1 for you to pick into if you do not bring your own container, according to their website.

Elwood Orchards

54 Elwood Road, Londonderry, 434-6017, elwoodorchards.com

What: cherries

When: TBA; pick-your-own cherries are expected to be available around early July.

Gould Hill Farm

656 Gould Hill Farm, Contoocook, 746-3811, gouldhillfarm.com

What: Blueberries, peaches

When: Farm stand is closed until mid-July. Pick-your-own blueberries will likely start around mid-July and will run into early August; peaches typically start in early August and run to early September, with peaches available in the store from late July to early September, according to their website.

Grandpa’s Farm

143 Clough Hill Road, Loudon, 783-5690, grandpasfarmnh.com

What: blueberries

When: Daily 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. They offer blueberries from the middle of July to the middle of August and their new Lower Field has three varieties, Duke, Spartan and Bluecrop, which will ripen in that order, according to their website.

Grounding Stone Farm

289 Maple St., Contoocook, 746-1064, groundingstonefarm.com

What: blueberries, Certified Organic by the NH Dept. of Agriculture, Markets & Food, according to their website

When: Open July 6 through the third week of August.

Hackleboro Orchards

61 Orchard Road, Canterbury, 783-4248, hackleboroorchard.com

What: blueberries

When: Daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; pick-your-own blueberries are expected between mid-June and late August, and will be $3.29 per pound, according to their website.

Kimball Fruit Farm

Route 122, on the Hollis and Pepperell, Mass., border, 978-433-9751, kimball.farm

What: strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries

When: Pick-your-own strawberries are projected for the middle of June, blueberries from July to early August (best picking usually mid-July), raspberries from July to early October, and blackberries from August to early October. The farm stand is open daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., according to their website.

Lavoie’s Farm

172 Nartoff Road, Hollis, 882-0072, lavoiesfarm.wordpress.com

What: strawberries and blueberries

When: Their hours vary by season but they are normally open June 1 until Oct. 31, according to their website.

McKenzie’s Farm

71 Northeast Pond Road, Milton, 652-9400, mckenziesfarm.com

What: strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and peaches

When: Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily; strawberries are expected to be ready by the middle of June, followed by raspberries around July 4 and blueberries also in early July, with peaches available in August, according to their website.

Norland Berries

164 N. Barnstead Road, Center Barnstead, 776-2021, norlandberries.com

What: blueberries

When: Berries will likely be available by early to mid-July, according to last year’s dates.

Saltbox Farm

321 Portsmouth Ave., Stratham, 436-7978, saltboxfarmnh.com

What: blueberries

When: The farm stand is open only during seasonal hours during their berry picking season and typically runs from early July to early September, according to their Facebook page.

Smith Farm Stand

15 Smith Farm Road, Gilford, 524-7673, smithfarmstand.com

What: raspberries and blueberries

When: The farm features three raspberry beds and one blueberry field, according to their website. Raspberries are expected to be ready for picking around the second week of July, followed by blueberries in mid-July. If their supply allows, one night each year they stay open late for twilight picking with special discounts, according to the same website.

Spring Ledge Farm

37 Main St., New London, 526-6253, springledgefarm.com

What: strawberries

When: Pick-your-own strawberries expected in June, and their picking field address is 985 Pleasant St. in New London, according to their website.

Sunnycrest Farm

59 High Range Road, Londonderry, 432-7753, sunnycrestfarmnh.com

What: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, cherries and peaches

When: 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily for pick-your-own strawberries beginning in June, with cherries starting around June 15, followed by blueberries and raspberries around the start of July and peaches in August if supplies allow, according to their website.

Trombly Gardens

150 N. River Road, Milford, 673-0647, tromblygardens.net

What: strawberries and blueberries

When: Pick-your-own strawberries are expected later in June, followed by blueberries in early July.

When are they ready?
Sources: agriculture.nh.gov and extension.unh.edu
Strawberries: early to mid-June
Blueberries: early to mid-July
Raspberries: early to mid-July
Cherries: early to mid-July
Blackberries: mid to late July or early August

Lavender fields forever

2024’s hot flavor gets its own harvest season

By John Fladd
jfladd@hippopress.com

Get acquainted with lavender by starting at the source — a field where it’s grown.

“We have generations that come here together, and it’s really a lovely sight,” said Missy Biagiottie, owner of Lavender Fields (393 Pumpkin Hill Road, Warner, 456-2443, pumpkinblossomfarm.com), a farm where families can pick their own lavender. “You see mothers, grandmothers and granddaughters all picking together. It’s a really nice experience.”

If you’re imagining groups of women in sundresses and straw hats, Biagiottie said, that’s pretty much what she sees. “Our target market is women. I’d say 95 percent of the people who visit us are women. It’s a nice, family, low-key event. It’s meant to be serene.”

Lavender is a perennial plant — meaning that it continues to grow, season after season — but requires year-round maintenance to be at its peak for a two- to three-week harvesting season in mid-July. This year, Biagiotti estimated her farms will be open for “U-Pick” customers between July 5 and July 21. When the farm’s staff harvests lavender, they use old-fashioned sickles, bundle the stalks, and hang them to dry in the farm’s barn to dry until it is needed.

“Of course, we give our U-Pickers nice little garden snips,” she said, “and give them instruction on how to cut the lavender so it might generate another bloom later in the season.”

She said most customers are not looking to take a lot of lavender home with them.

“They’re usually looking for a perfect stem,” Biagiotti said. They take it home and make lavender lemonade or lavender cookies. They might use it decoratively or for craft purposes. Most people will take it home for a memory and hang it up to dry like another herb. The scent lasts for a very long time, she said.

Biagiotti and her team harvest the rest of the lavender to distill into lavender hydrosol — a lavender-infused water — and lavender oil, both of which they use as a base for lavender products that they sell at the farm and online. They sell bath and body products but also lavender food products and cooking ingredients, such as lavender simple syrup, lavender honey, lavender-infused vinegar and oil, white hot chocolate with lavender, a blueberry lavender drink mixer and culinary lavender buds.

Inspired to cook with your lavender? According to pastry chef Emilee Viaud, owner of Sweet Treats by Emilee and pastry chef for Greenleaf Restaurant in Milford, lavender is not an ingredient you can throw into a recipe on a whim; it needs a bit of planning.

“With lavender, it’s not really enjoyable to eat in itself,” she said. “In pastry, infusing it into pastry cream is what I like to do, because the floral soapiness complements the creaminess of the pastry cream really well. They kind of balance each other out.”

Viaud said lavender often works best as a supporting flavor.

“Lemon and lavender work well together. The spices I like to add to that is cardamom or fennel. With fennel seed, you can grind it up and infuse it into the pastry cream, and when you strain it, you’ll remove all those extra components you don’t really want to eat,” Viaud said.

“My husband [chef Chris Viaud] uses it in one of his cocktails,” she said. “He infuses it into a simple syrup and uses it that way.”

He is not the only one to do that. For the past several years, as bartenders have experimented with more and more nontraditional flavors for cocktails, lavender has become a go-to flavor to play off more orthodox ingredients.

“We do a couple of lavender drinks,” said Niko Kfoury, bartender at Firefly Restaurant in Manchester. “Under the Favorites section of our cocktail menu, we’ve got a lavender-blueberry lemonade. We’ve got a lavender gin gimlet as well. The Favorites never change; those are always on the menu. I think it [lavender] has a floral quality. It’s just a really calming, soothing flavor that’s really complementary with a lot of different ingredients. It adds a calmness to a flavor profile.”

Lavender!

Lavender to pick

Lavender Fields at Pumpkin Blossom Farm
393 Pumpkin Hill Road, Warner
456-2443, pumpkinblossomfarm.com

Tentative dates for picking lavender are Friday, July 5, through Sunday, July 21, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.

Lavender to taste

Sweet Treats by Emilee
facebook.com/EmileesSweetTreats

Greenleaf
54 Nashua St., Milford
213-5447, greenleafmilford.com
Open Tuesday through Sunday, 5 to 9 p.m.

Firefly Bistro and Bar
22 Concord St., Manchester
935-9740, fireflynh.com
Open Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m; Saturday and Sunday brunch 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Saturday dinner 4 to 9 p.m.; Sunday dinner 4 to 8 p.m.

Market season

Farmers markets build customer loyalty

By John Fladd
jfladd@hippopress.com

Selling at a farmers market, meeting your customers one-on-one, letting them try your product and answering their questions is a way for farmers, craftspeople and other makers to build customer loyalty and word-of-mouth marketing.

Becca and Mindy Dean, for instance, have a passion for goat milk, and their farm, Galomime Farm Too in Mont Vernon, sells its goat products at the Bedford Farmers Market on Tuesday afternoons.

Co-owner Becca Dean said that working at a farmers market gives them the opportunity to introduce goat milk products to customers who wouldn’t normally look for them.

“We have a unique product and it may not be for everyone, but everyone who has tried our product seems to love it!” Dean said. She has noticed that the sorts of customers who shop at farmers markets seem to be open to new experiences.

“One [customer] stated that he and his family plan dinners for the week based on what they get at the market,” she said

Although some New Hampshire farmers markets open in May, most wait to open until June, when the weather is more reliable and some fresh produce is ready to pick and sell. John Blake of DJ Honey, who also sells at the Bedford market, said business will pick up significantly with the end of the school year.

“The beginning of the season seems to be normal,” he said. “We did start a few weeks earlier than usual [this year]. When school gets out the market will be in full swing. I see the rest of the season being a good one.”

If you shop at a farmers market, you will notice that many vendors there sell a variety of goods other than fruits and vegetables.

Donna Silva of Lone Willow Farms in Mont Vernon sells her farm’s products in Milford and Bedford but limits her food sales to Milford.

“This is my first year at the Bedford Farmers Market,” she said. “I don’t sell food products there because they have enough farm-to-table vendors. … This will be my fourth year at the Milford Farmers Market, where I do sell my awesome veggies, produce, herbs and edible flowers. At both markets I sell flowers and gifts [or] art I make from my flowers.”

According to Joshua Marshall, the Director of the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture’s Division of Agricultural Development, numbers and statistics for New Hampshire’s farmers markets can be elusive.

“New Hampshire has a pretty vibrant farmers market industry and the interesting thing is we don’t have any sort of centralized registration that they [farmers markets] are required to do, so it’s hard to get a big picture of how many are out there,” he said. The Agriculture Department keeps a voluntary publication on its website where farmers markets can publish their events, but submitting information to it isn’t mandatory.

“Between the summer and winter markets, we have just over 40,” Marshall said. “That is a little bit down over previous years, which has been closer to 50, but I know that there are a lot more out there.”

Marketeers

Galomime Farm Too
60 Old Amherst Road, Mont Vernon
facebook.com/GalomimeFarmToo
Sells at Bedford Farmers Market

DJ’s Pure Honey
facebook.com/djspurehoney
Sells at Bedford Farmers Market and Nashua Farmers Market

Lone Willow Farms
70 Tater St., Mont Vernon
731-0611, lonewillowfarms.com
Sells at Bedford Farmers Market and Milford Farmers Outdoor Market

Smells like nineties spirit

Tribute bands tackle the music of the 1990s

Gen X didn’t see it coming, despite the harbingers: internet reminders that the first Lollapalooza Festival was closer in years to the Kennedy assassination than to today, or Pearl Jam getting into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. As they were reeling from reeling in the years, the arrival of ’90s tribute bands was to many of them a hard (blue) pill to swallow.

Some of the acts that formed weren’t surprising. With Kurt Cobain, Layne Staley and Scott Weiland all dead and gone, Priceless Advice and Sick Season, devoted to Nirvana and Alice In Chains respectively, and Stone Temple Posers hella made sense. And Oasis likely won’t reunite anytime soon, so it’s not trippin’ to cover “Wonderwall” in the interim.

But what of those still performing, like Dave Matthews Band, Foo Fighters, Radiohead and the aforementioned Pearl Jam, each of which boasts one or more doppelgangers? Even Smashing Pumpkins; a band called Recent History does them. Apparently, all these objects of affection take it in stride and are unbothered about losing any business.

Collective Soul is on the road with Hootie & the Blowfish, with a tour stopping at Fenway Park and Bank of NH Pavilion before the summer ends. In an interview to advance the upcoming shows, their front man Ed Roland was surprised to hear about the existence of Reflective Soul, based in Dallas, Texas — but grateful.

“You can’t help but love it. I’m so honored,” Roland said. “Just being here 30 years and on top of that somebody thinks enough of you to go, all right, we’ll play some of their catalog. It boosts the ego up when you walk in a bar, and somebody is playing one of your songs. You’re like, ‘Wow, I really did have a hit.’”

It’s a hot topic in New England that’s spawned organizations like Covering New England, a tribute-centric company with a growing roster of acts like Crush, a Dave Matthews Band tribute, and White Belts, who play emo songs by Taking Back Sunday, Blink-182 and Jimmy Eat World, among others.

Covering New England’s Tristan Law thinks the decade is having a moment for a couple of reasons.

“First, a lot of those really seminal albums are having their 25th and 30th anniversaries, so they’re in the news, and you have a lot of people like me — late 30s, early 40s — who came up in that decade and have a special nostalgia for that time,” he said. “How many people’s first CD was Dookie?’”

Law added that while a lot of ’90s stars are still touring, with tickets now costing hundreds of dollars fans are more selective about going to giant concerts.

“Now, you can go see a really good Dave Matthews Band tribute for twenty bucks and still have a great time. That, and the ’90s f-in ruled; why wouldn’t you want to go back then for a few hours?”

At TributePalooza, an all-day show in Warren on July 6, many ’90s acts will perform, including Jagged Little Thrill doing Alanis Morissette, Social Destruction playing the music of Social Distortion, and Stone Temple Posers, along with two other tribute acts that Gen X is a bit more chillax with doing Lynyrd Skynyrd and AC/DC covers.

Here are thoughts from six bands bringing back the decade that witnessed the internet’s rise and the decline of the music business, along with a lot of great and varied music.

Tributepalooza happens Saturday, July 6, at Melody Mountain Farm, 161 Lake Tarleton Road, Warren, $35 at melodymountainfarm.com

Giving 110 percent – Neon 90s

promo photo of 4 band members wearing baseball caps and sunglasses on dark background with neon light behind them
Neon 90s

When it formed, the North Shore-based band Neon 90s wore flannel shirts and leaned into grunge. Later they switched to jean jackets and shades upon realizing there was more to mining the ’90s than Nirvana’s “Lithium.” They became an all-purpose tribute act, determined to hit every high point, from Soundgarden to Garth Brooks.

“We figured let’s take on the entire decade, and smash as many songs as we can into a set,” said John Goodhue, who sings and plays lead guitar with the band, which includes Michael Parsons on bass, drummer Steve Russo and Guy Cloutman on lead guitar.

On any given night the quartet moves from Foo Fighters’ “Learn To Fly” to Lou Bega’s “Mambo No. 5” and tosses in “Semi-Charmed Life” from Third Eye Blind for spice. Their showstopper is a gender-bending version of Shania Twain’s “Man, I Feel Like A Woman.” They even do Meredith Brooks’ “Bitch” and “Wannabe” from the Spice Girls.

Setlists reflect Goodhue’s own tastes.

“All my favorite songs, mostly, are from the ’90s,” he said. “The Top 40 was spread so far off the different genres, you had major pop songs, country songs, grunge came into the mix, even hip-hop. It was a decade where you saw so many different kinds of music really hit the spot.”

Like a lot of similar bands, members of Neon 90s have additional musical projects. Russo plays in Mile 21, a North Shore reggae and ska group, as well as a Top 40 band called Mystery Meat. “Our guitar player Gary has been in several cover bands and original bands, as well as Mike and me,” Goodhue, who also spent a few years on the West Coast playing in different bands, said.

When Neon 90s hits the stage, one of their favorites is “Possum Kingdom” by the Toadies. “It’s a really fun song to play, and it’s kind of challenging, too,” Goodhue said. They’ll also take a shot at audience suggestions, or at least try.

“Sometimes we get requests that aren’t ’90s, like people missed the memo,” he said. “My favorite song was actually requested for us to learn for a wedding, ‘What’s Up’ by 4 Non Blondes. We’ve kept it in our set because it always goes over well, and everyone sings along.”

Neon 90s appear in Hampton Beach on Saturday, July 6 at Wally’s Pub and on Sunday, July 14 at Bernie’s Beach Bar

Worldwide Californication – Red NOT Chili Peppers

band on outdoor stage at night, singer and two guitar players at front, colored lights behind them
Red NOT Chili Peppers

One of the longest-running ’90s tribute acts is also among the most successful. Red NOT Chili Peppers formed in 2009 in Southern California, where the Red Hot Chili Peppers rose to fame. The lineup has changed several times over the years, but the present band — Paul Moffat on bass, guitarist Greg Loman, Pete Koopmans on drums and singer David Vives — has been steady for a while. Vives is the newest member; he joined in 2021.

Red NOT Chili Peppers are unique for being a nationally touring act. Actually, they’ve performed in such far-flung places as Dubai. Much of this success is due to the quality of their act.

“The biggest undertaking with the Chili Peppers is having players who not only can learn the songs,” Loman said in a sit-down band interview prior to a show in Portsmouth. “They have to recreate the tones, the energy, the look, and the vibe.”

Beyond that, the group found its way to Providence Music Group, a Rhode Island-based agency focused on tribute bands, everything from Sublime to Johnny Cash, along with Elton John, Guns N’ Roses, and Linkin Park. When Moffat joined in the mid-2010s, he’d also taken over as manager. Koopmans, who was in the band before Moffat, became their booking agent.

Together, they realized their group didn’t fit a conventional niche, and it was impacting their ability to get gigs.

“Paul and I took a really hard look at the business, and I basically took the band to several different agencies, as our agent then had retired and we were unhappy with him anyway,” Koopmans said. Their agency at the time was “probably 90 percent original bands and 10 percent tributes, and I never felt like they quite understood what to do with us. They would just wait for offers to come in.”

Since making the change, bookings have doubled, “and we’ve watched attendance grow at shows too,” Koopmans said. “I don’t think that’s all attributed to the booking agent in general. I think a lot of that is just us finding the right places to play. But the product is getting a lot better.”

“And the name getting out there, man,” Moffat added. “It’s a good name, and people remember it.”

It’s almost too good — that’s why Moffat and Loman, who helps with the band’s graphic design, modified the logo so the word “NOT” is uppercase. “We were getting ourselves into some trouble,” Koopmans said. “Not by the real band, but by people buying tickets and being pissed all the time that they’d been duped.”

Once, when the band played New York City’s Highline Ballroom, ticket presales exploded, recalled Moffat, probably due to a hopeful case of mistaken identity. “We played the show, and the room was half full,” he said. “In all likelihood, some scalpers scooped up all the tickets when they saw it, because they didn’t look carefully enough. We thought it was a great way to get back at scalpers.”

Fans that come to see them run the gamut.

“Some want to hear Freaky Stylie, others want stuff from Stadium Arcadium,” Loman said. “You watch them all kind of light up, with whatever era or song that you’re playing. It’s just so interesting to then talk to them after and they’ll be like, ‘Oh man, when I was growing up, the most important album of my life, that blew my mind, was Blood Sugar Sex Magic.’ Then another one’s like, ‘Dude, Californication was my favorite’ and another one’s Stadium Arcadium. It goes through the generations in such a wonderful way.”

Singer Vives echoed Loman. “My favorite thing is how passionate fans of Red Hot Chili Peppers are,” he said. “It’s so easy to connect with them about the shared joy of living this music together. They’re showing up, and we all have the same goal. There’s no need convincing them to have a good time.”

Moffat is happiest when a wary fan takes a chance. “It’s like, ‘I had no expectations. It was 20 bucks, it’s a band that I love, I thought you guys were going to suck, and I came in and I was blown away,’” he said. “That’s all I really want, you know. That’s what we’re trying to do.”

Red NOT Chili Peppers will appear on Friday, Aug. 9, at Wally’s Pub in Hampton Beach.

Double duty – Yellow LedVedder/Your Honor

black and white image of 5 member band performing on dark stage - 3 guitarists, one singer and a drummer
Yellow LedVedder

Few bands challenge aspiring tribute acts like Pearl Jam. The Rock & Roll Hall of Famers are not only still performing, but the Seattle grunge heroes also released a new album this year. The record, Dark Matter, caused one critic to exclaim, “the faithful will rejoice, and the PJ fall stadium tour is completely sold out.

The latter fact is a principal reason that a band like Yellow LedVedder is even viable. In fact, one of their biggest gigs happened in a bar across the street from Fenway Park, where Pearl Jam was playing that night.

“It was one of the most amazing experiences,” Ben Kilcollins, the band’s lead vocalist, said in a recent phone interview. “We had a lot of people saying, ‘Oh, we couldn’t get tickets, so we figured we’d just come down and kind of listen outside of Fenway, then we saw that you guys were here.”

Ever the fans, Kilcollins and his bandmates had one eye on the door all night. “The whole time we’re hoping, Pearl Jam’s around here, maybe they’ll come in, but it never happened,” he recalled. “The best dream come true in the world is just to get an affirmation of, ‘Hey, guys, we see what you’re doing, keep up the good work.’ Even if it was a cease and desist, it’d just be good to hear from the band that they know you exist.”

Playing songs by a band that’s still here is a feature, not a bug.

“A lot of the other bands are paying tribute to guys who weren’t around for very long, but I think it helps that Pearl Jam is still on tour,” Kilcollins said. “Instead of guessing, like Nirvana, what would they be doing now, we already have an answer. It’s what they were playing yesterday.”

Kilcollins continued that miming Vedder, who’s near 60 and still “running around on stage, jumping on people’s shoulders and doing the exact same thing he was doing 30 years ago” also motivates his band, which includes bassist Andy Aikens, Joel Amsden and Pete Risano on guitars and drummer Jason Young. “Eddie’s leaving kids in the dust, he’s still running around the entire band,” he said. “I try to bring to our shows that aspect of their high energy.”

Lending weight to that assertion is the band’s latest endeavor.

“The day Taylor Hawkins died, we decided to put on a Foo Fighters tribute,” Kilcollins said. It was planned as a one-off, but they’ve done four or five shows in the past two years. “We try to pick and choose where we do it, because we don’t want to oversaturate…. We’ll play a full set of Pearl Jam stuff, take a break, and then do a full set of Foo Fighters, kind of opening for ourselves.”

Yellow LedVedder’s summer schedule is under construction. See @yellowledvedderband on Instagram for more.

Originalists – Crush, a Dave Matthews Tribute Band

fish eye photo of band on stage with screens in background and blue lights
Crush

Though the Dave Matthews Band is still out on tour, with two sold out Meadowbrook shows happening this summer, it’s not the same group that set the world on fire in 1994 with its debut album Under the Table and Dreaming. When violin player Boyd Tinsley departed in 2018, he wasn’t replaced, and DMB took on a different sound.

That’s made Crush, a DMB tribute band based in Boston, a vital link to the past. It includes a Tinsley doppelganger, sans any scandalous baggage, in the form of fiddler Abe Dewing, which keeps songs like “Ants Marching” and “What Would You Say” true to their origins. That’s just the beginning of what makes Crush a solid draw in New England. They also achieve a look and feel that sets it apart from other efforts

“I think some tribute bands will play note for note, and do exactly what the actual bands do, even on the recordings,” Matt Salito, who plays guitar in Crush, said recently. “There’s certainly a skill to that, but I think part of the fun of being in our band is we take some of those songs and we add our own style to it. We change it just enough where you know it’s Crush playing the song.”

They’re careful not to book too close to any DMB appearances, partly because there’s a decent chance they’ll be buying tickets, but also, they’re realistic. “We realize they’re going to be more of a draw than a tribute band,” he said. Besides, they wouldn’t want to miss a tailgate party. “We meet other people at those shows, and we’re like, ‘Hey, we play a lot in the late summer, in the fall, even in the winter when Dave’s not really doing his thing anymore. So come check us out.”

Salito started Crush as an acoustic duo with Brett Huntley after the two were introduced through a mutual friend in 2011.

“We met at his apartment in South Boston at the time and played a few songs, exchanged information and tried to make arrangements to play again,” Salito recalled. “Along the way, we started seeing a couple other tribute bands to Dave. We really liked what they were doing, and we [thought] we can try to give this a shot ourselves too and see how it plays out.”

After playing a high school graduation party for a family friend, the idea of a full band gained momentum. Crush played its first show in October 2011. There’s been a few lineup shuffles, but Crush has stayed the same in recent years. That’s allowed them to become a more cohesive unit, Salito continued.

“We’ve developed a little family within the band, and I think you can see that vibe on stage,” he said. “We’re really feeling like we’re in a good place as to the songs we’re choosing and the parts we’re playing, and how we’re meshing as a unit. And really being a part of the audience in a sense; even as the performers, that’s important. I think that’s part of our draw too.”

Crush, A Dave Matthews Tribute Band appears Friday, July 26, at Cisco Brewers in Portsmouth.

All in the family – Stone Temple Posers

4 man band on stage under bright lights, audience standing at stage edge
Stone Temple Posers

Olaf Westphalen was a modern country music fan when his 12-year-old stepson John convinced him to listen to a few Soundgarden and Nirvana songs. The stepdad enjoyed it, and really locked into Stone Temple Pilots upon hearing them the first time. By the early 2000s, Olaf and John were playing in cover bands together, including Wretched Von Krank, The Nerve, and Cold Comfort.

Most satisfying, though, is Stone Temple Posers, a tribute to you guessed it, which played its first show in 2015 and has been a solid area draw since, with stepfather and stepson a bass/drums rhythm section, guitarist Paul Ouellette, and lead singer Hal White rounding out the group. Prior to the Posers, Olaf and Ouellette were briefly in STP tribute act Crown of Apathy; Westphalen was in Stone Temple Aviators and SiN after that.

John Westphalen began playing music when his stepdad gave him a Ludwig drum kit that belonged to his uncle, who also played in a band. “I always liked the drums, and Dave Grohl; I was a big Nirvana guy,” he said by phone recently. Though his new kit was a bit beat up, he didn’t mind. “Don’t get much more grunge than a rusty drum set.”

He stuck with it, and after his parents bought him a brand-new Tama kit, “I’ve been playing ever since.”

Before Weiland died, John Westphalen had a couple of chances to see him live with STP. “I saw them at Casino Ballroom, and it was one of the best shows,” he said. “Of course, he was an hour late, but he was engaged with the crowd, and they sounded awesome. He looked like he was enjoying himself. Then I saw him again in Gilford. He wasn’t nearly as engaged and seemed like he didn’t want to be there. I think they broke up for the final time like three months after that show.”

In addition to being a lot of fun, Stone Temple Posers is the young Westphalen’s longest-running band still boasting every member. It’s also the only one he’s in at this point.

“It used to be me, Olaf and Paul, and then we’d have a hard time finding a singer that would just show up, do the shows,” he said. “Hal, he’s been perfect, very easy-going. If we have a show coming up, we’ll practice the Monday before and just make sure we tighten up a little bit, and then we’ll play. Bang. No messing around.”

Their common bond is love for a big sound from a great decade.

“We’re a bunch of guys that really just enjoy that era in music,” he said. “We know other people do too, and we really try to give it justice by sounding like Stone Temple Pilots but also having our own little sound to it, too. So it’s not just a complete knockoff.”

Stone Temple Posers appear Wednesday, June 26, at Plaistow Town Common in Plaistow.

Straddling the Decade – White Belts

black and white promo photo of band on sound stage, seen from angle below, playing guitars and singing
White Belts

If Lollapalooza signaled the start of the ’90s, the Vans Warped Tour helped usher it out. White Belts, a band that hosts Emo Night at the Press Room in Portsmouth and plays throughout New England, aims to keep that spirit alive by reliving as much of that moment as it can.

“We consider ourselves an emo tribute band,” drummer Matt Wishnack said during a phone interview that included White Belts bass player Tom Sargent. “Emo encapsulates the rise of Hot Topic, Newbury Comics and alternative music, which kind of molded itself in that time period.”

As to the bands they cover, “you get a lot of Jimmy Eat World, Under Oath, Dashboard Confessional, New Found Glory, and we get some pop punk stuff like Blink-182,” Sargent said. “Taking Back Sunday is a main staple, as is My Chemical Romance. I think we’d all be shocked if we didn’t play one song from them in our shows.”

Wishnack added Fall Out Boy to this list of “tentpole bands.”

Audiences tend to be in their mid-20s to early 30s; a little early to start reliving their youth, but nostalgia has an odd pull that White Belts tries to honor.

“We want people to have a similar reaction to seeing us as they would actually seeing Taking Back Sunday,” Wishnack said. “Which obviously is impossible, but you can see the difference when people are reacting to you that way and when they’re just reacting to a cover band.”

When they play Emo Night at the Press Room, they’ll bring along a like-minded band, like Mall Cops or Summer Cult, who played at last year’s Boston Calling. At the next scheduled event on July 6, the Boston-based band We Demand Parachutes will appear.

White Belts includes, along with Wishnack and Sargent, lead singer Derek Bunker and guitarists Nick Grieco and Kyle Kowalsky. All true believers, which, Wishnack stressed, is what makes them unique.

“What separates us from some other bands is we feel like we really represent the music and the bands that we’re covering well. If you’re going to create a block to make you feel like you’re at Warped Tour for two hours without actually going, this is as close as you can get.”

Added Sargent, “and you won’t need sunscreen.”

White Belts hosts Emo Night with We Demand Parachutes on Saturday, July 6, at The Press Room in Portsmouth.

Summer Guide 2024

Load up your season with fun

Finally, it’s summer!

OK, maybe not in an official calendar sense but Memorial Day weekend marks the start of that summer mindset — your warm-weather clothes, evenings of flip-flops and ice cream, summer music and cookouts with hot dogs, burgers, grilled corn or whatever deliciousness says summer to you.

Some other perfect accompaniments to summer? Food festivals, car shows, concerts, theater, art fairs, comedy, ball games and so much more. Use this weekend and this week’s guide to summer 2024 to help you plan your season of fun.

FAIRS & FESTIVALS

• The annual Meredith Memorial Day Weekend Craft Festival is happening Saturday, May 25, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, May 26, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Monday, May 27, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Mill Falls Marketplace (312 Daniel Webster Hwy., Meredith). New England-based artisans and craftsmen will gather to sell their foods and crafts, including jewelry, up-cycled items, pottery, pies, sauces, pickles and infused oils. Admission is free. Visit castleberryfairs.com.

• The Goffstown Rotary Club’s (Parsons Drive) Car Show is returning for its 11th year on Saturday, June 1, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will include goodie bags for the first 50 registrants, along with food trucks, raffles and trophies given in 16 classes. Admission is free, and the cost to participate as a registrant is $20 per car, with all proceeds benefiting local charities. Visit goffstownrotary.org.

• The Children’s Museum of New Hampshire’s (6 Washington St., Dover, childrens-museum.org) New Hampshire Maker Fest is on Saturday, June 1, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event is a large-scale “show and tell,” with makers of all kinds, including artists, engineers, scientists and others, showcasing their creativity. Admission is on a pay-what-you-can basis, with a suggested donation of $5 per person.

• Milford’s third annual Pride Festival is happening Saturday, June 1, from noon to 4 p.m. at Keyes Park (45 Elm St., Milford) and will feature live music, food and more. See “Milford NH PRIDE” on Facebook.

• Hillsborough’s History Alive event will be on Saturday, June 8, at Kemp Park (11 River St.) in Hillsborough. June’s event will focus on Abenaki Indian life and culture. The event is free. Visit historyalivenh.org

Market Square Day in downtown Portsmouth will return on Saturday, June 8, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Produced by the local nonprofit Pro Portsmouth, the festival kicks off with a 10K road race and features craft and artisan vendors, food, two stages of live entertainment and more. Visit proportsmouth.org/events/market-square-day.

• It’s Children’s Day at the New Hampshire Farm Museum (1305 White Mountain Hwy., Milton, nhfarmmuseum.org) on Saturday, June 15, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Try your hand at old-fashioned games and check out storytelling, blacksmithing demonstrations, tractor rides, s’mores making and more. Admission is free for children under 4, $12 for adults, $8 for seniors and $6 for children ages 4 to 17. A family passes cost $30.

Laconia Motorcycle Week is celebrating its 101st anniversary this year. The rally goes from Saturday, June 8, through Sunday, June 16, and includes motorcycle tours, live entertainment, vendors and scenic rides around Weirs Beach in Laconia. Visit laconiamcweek.com.

• The Northlands Music and Arts Festival runs Friday, June 14, and Saturday, June 15, at the Cheshire Fairground in Swanzey. The line up at northlandslive.com currently features nearly three dozen performers and musical acts over three stages. One- and two-day festival passes are available.

Manchester Pride Week starts on Saturday, June 15, with a Pride Parade and Festival. The parade will begin at 11:15 a.m. and proceed down Elm Street to Veterans Park, where the Festival will take place from noon to 6 p.m. There will be live entertainment, food trucks, local vendors and artists, and more. See the complete line-up of events at manchestertrue.org.

• Take a trip to the coast for the 24th Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Classic, happening from Thursday, June 20, to Saturday, June 22. Prizes will be awarded for the best sand sculptures. The sculptures will be lighted for nightly viewing through June 26. Visit hamptonbeach.org.

• The Somersworth International Children’s Festival will feature live music, food, wildlife encounters, a petting zoo, vendors and more on Saturday, June 17, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Main Street and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Noble Pines Park in Somersworth. A pre-festival celebration will be held the night before, Friday, June 16, from 6 to 10 p.m. at Somersworth High School (11 Memorial Drive, Somersworth), with food, vendors, music and fireworks. Visit nhfestivals.org.

• Join the Aviation Museum of New Hampshire for its annual Father’s Day weekend Fly-In BBQ on Saturday, June 15, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Nashua’s Boire Field (83 Perimeter Road, Nashua). Attendees are welcome to enjoy a barbecue buffet lunch and get a close look at visiting aircraft on the ramp. Pilots are invited to fly in, and vintage airplanes and home-built aircrafts are especially welcome. Tickets, including the barbecue, are $30 for adults and $10 for kids ages 6 to 12. Without the barbecue, tickets are $10 for adults and free for kids ages 12 and under. To purchase tickets, visit nhahs.org.

Plaistow’s Old Home Day returns on Saturday, June 22, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with local vendors on the Town Hall green (145 Main St., Plaistow) as well as a beard contest, a baby contest, raffles, entertainment booths, a parade and more. This year’s theme is “Happy Birthday, Plaistow!” to celebrate the town’s 275th anniversary. Follow the town Old Home Day’s Facebook @plaistowoldhomeday for updates.

• Intown Concord’s 50th annual Market Days Festival runs from Thursday, June 20, to Saturday, June 22, in downtown Concord from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. The event includes a wide array of local vendors, live entertainment, family-friendly activities and more. Visit marketdaysfestival.com.

• Join the Wilton Main Street Association for its annual Summerfest, happening on Saturday, June 22, starting at 10 a.m. and featuring an arts market, live music, food, street vendors, a pancake breakfast and a fireworks display in the evening. See visitwilton.com/summerfest.

• The annual Nashua Pride Festival, a free celebration of diversity, acceptance and fun focused on promoting equality, happens Saturday, June 22, from 2 to 6 p.m. in the parking lot of the Nashua Public Library (2 Court St.) and will feature a parade that kicks off at 2 p.m. Visit nashuanh.gov/1217/nashua-pride-festival.

• Join the New Hampshire Farm Museum (1305 White Mountain Hwy., Milton) for Fourth on the Farm, happening Saturday, June 29, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Activities include a tractor ride to see farm animals, as well as demonstrations, reenactments, a scavenger hunt, lawn games, lunch and strawberry shortcake, and live performances of songs from the 1700s and 1800s. Admission is free for members and children under 4, $12 for adults, $8 for seniors and $6 for children ages 4 to 17. A family pass can be purchased for $30. Visit nhfarmmuseum.org.

• The Raymond Town Fair returns for its 48th year from Friday, July 12, to Sunday, July 14, at the Raymond Town Common (Epping and Main streets, Raymond). It will feature live music, family-friendly entertainment, a children’s parade, a fireworks display and more. See “Raymond Town Fair” on Facebook.

• The next New England Reptile Expo is scheduled for Sunday, July 7, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Manchester Downtown (700 Elm St., Manchester). The show features more than 200 vendor tables full of reptiles, pet supplies and more. Tickets are $12 for adults, $6 for kids ages 7 to 12 and free for kids ages 6 and under. Visit reptileexpo.com.

• The Hillsborough Summer Festival is back again this year at Grimes Field (29 Preston St., Hillsborough) from Thursday, July 11, to Sunday, July 14, with live entertainment, carnival rides, a fireworks show on Saturday night, a 5K road race on Friday and a parade on Sunday. Festival hours are 6 to 10 p.m. on Thursday; 5 to 11 p.m. on Friday; noon to 11 p.m. on Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is free. Visit hillsborosummerfest.com.

• Returning to the grounds of American Independence Museum (1 Governors Lane, Exeter) for a 34th year is the American Independence Festival, on Saturday, July 13, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Be transported back in time with a live reading of the Declaration of Independence, and enjoy historical reenactments and colonial artisan demonstrations as well as colonial games, music and dances. Visit independencemuseum.org.

• The Capital City Pride Festival (capitalcitypridenh.com) will take place in Concord, from Monday, July 15, to Monday, July 22. A Community Arts Event with Queerlective will take place at the Kimball Jenkins School of Art (266 N Main St. in Concord, 225-3932, kimballjenkins.com) Monday, July 15 at 12 p.m. A Pride Family Picnic will take place at Kimball Jenkins on Tuesday, July 16, at 12 p.m. Performances of Coming Out Stories and Queeraoke will take place at Teatotaller (2 Capital Plaza, N Main St. in Concord, 715-1906, teatotallercafe.com) Sunday, July 21, at 6 p.m. There will be a Pride After Party and Mini-Ball at the Bank of NH Stage (16 S Main St. in Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Monday, July 22, at 6 p.m. Visit capitalcitypridenh.com.

• The Stratham 4-H Summerfest returns for a third year on Saturday, July 20, at the Stratham Hill Park Fairgrounds (270 Portsmouth Ave., Stratham). Attendees are welcome to join as the work of 4-H volunteers and members will be on display in the 4-H building, show rings and livestock barns from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Exhibits include shows and displays on gardening, cooking, environmental stewardship, hiking and much more. See extension.unh.edu/event/2024/07/2024-stratham-4-h-summerfest.

• The Aviation Museum of New Hampshire’s (27 Navigator Road, Londonderry) annual Classic Car Show is set for Saturday, July 13, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and vehicles of all makes and eras are welcome. Trophies will be given out for the People’s Choice Award and the Museum Award. Vehicle registration is $10, or you can come as a spectator for $5 (cash only; kids ages 12 and under are free). A rain date of July 22 is planned. Visit nhahs.org.

• Organized by the Merrimack Valley Military Vehicle Collectors Club, this year’s Weare Rally will go from Friday, July 25, to Sunday, July 27, at Center Woods School (14 Center Road, Weare). The rally features military vehicle displays, scenic rides, demonstrations, food and more. The cost is $5 per family. See mvmvc.org.

• Don’t miss the 15th annual Live Free or Die Tattoo Expo, happening from Friday, July 26, to Sunday, July 28, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Manchester Downtown (700 Elm St., Manchester). The event features tattoo artists, contests, vendors, live music and performances. Show hours are from 5 p.m. to midnight on Friday, from 11 a.m. to midnight on Saturday, and from noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets are $15 when purchased in advance for a one-day pass ($20 at the door), $25 in advance for a two-day pass ($30 at the door), and $35 when bought in advance for a three-day pass ($40 at the door). Visit livefreeordietattoo.com.

• The annual Summer Psychic & Craft Fair returns for a 13th year to Weirs Beach Community Center (25 Lucerne Ave., Laconia) on Saturday, July 27, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Hosted by CAYA Reiki and Healing, the event will include psychic readings, vendors and door prizes. Admission is free. See eventbrite.com for ticket information.

• The Canterbury Fair is celebrating its 66th year — join the fun on Saturday, July 27, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Canterbury Center (Baptist and Center roads) with live music, demonstrations from local artisan and antique vendors, children’s activities and more. Admission is free. Visit canterburyfair.com.

• The Belknap County Fair is set to return on Saturday, Aug. 3, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Sunday, Aug. 4, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 174 Mile Hill Road in Belmont. The fair features live entertainment, food, exhibits and animal shows. Admission at the gate is $10 for adults, $5 for senior citizens 65 and older, police, fire and EMS personnel, and free for kids under 10 and for military service members. Visit bcfairnh.org.

• The League of New Hampshire Craftsmen will hold the 91st Annual Craftsmen’s Fair at the Mount Sunapee Resort (1398 Route 103, Newbury) Saturday, Aug. 3, through Sunday, Aug. 11. It will feature the juried work of hundreds of members with sales booths, educational workshops, demonstrations and exhibitions. See nhcrafts.org/annual-craftsmens-fair.

• The 2024 Manchester International Film Festival is set for Friday, Aug. 9, and Saturday, Aug. 10. For tickets and a schedule of events, visit palacetheatre.org/film.

• Returning to the DoubleTree by Hilton Manchester Downtown (700 Elm St., Manchester) from Thursday, Aug. 8, through Saturday, Aug. 10, is the annual New Hampshire Antiques Show, hosted by the New Hampshire Antique Dealers Association. Nearly 60 professional antique dealers will exhibit their collections of antique furniture, art, jewelry and more. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Tickets are $15 on Thursday, and $10 on Friday and Saturday; return visits are free. Visit nhada.org.

Hudson’s Old Home Days return, Thursday, Aug. 8, to Sunday, Aug. 11, on the grounds of the Hill House (211 Derry Road, Hudson). There will be carnival games, live music, fireworks, food and more. Event times are Thursday from 5 to 10 p.m., Friday from 5 to 11 p.m., Saturday from noon to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. See hudsonoldhomedays.com.

• Save the date for the 46th annual Alton Bay Boat Show, returning to the Alton Town Docks on Saturday, Aug. 10, from 9 a.m. to noon and featuring a variety of vintage boats on display. Admission is free. See the nhbm.org/alton-bay-boat-show for details.

• Don’t miss the 16th annual Hampton Beach Children’s Festival, Monday, Aug. 12, through Friday, Aug. 16. The event includes ice cream, dancing, balloons, storytelling, a magic show and a costume parade. All activities are free and open to the public. Visit hamptonbeach.org/events/childrens-events for details as they become available.

• Don’t miss Londonderry’s 125th annual Old Home Days, set for Wednesday, Aug. 14, to Saturday, Aug. 17. Details are in the works, but past celebrations have included concerts, fireworks, a parade, a 5K road race, a baby contest, children’s games and more. See londonderrynh.gov or follow the event page on Facebook @townoflondonderryoldhomeday.

• Hillsborough’s History Alive event will be on Saturday, Aug. 17, and Sunday, Aug. 18, at Jones Road in Hillsborough. The event will focus on historical reenactments of famous battles and daily village life from times past, and will include activities, crafts and musicians. Tickets are $10 per adult and $8 for seniors. The event is free for children 16 and under when accompanied by an adult. You can purchase a bracelet on the day of the event and it will cover both days. Cash only; credit cards are not accepted in-person. Visit historyalivenh.org.

• The New Hampshire Farm Museum (1305 White Mountain Hwy., Milton) is hosting its annual Truck and Tractor Day on Saturday, Aug. 17, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Trucks, wagons, antique cars and tractors dating back to the mid 1900s will be on display, and the event will feature demonstrations on things like the two-man saw and the butter churn treadmill. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for seniors 65 and older, $6 for children ages 4 to 17, and free children under 4. A family pass is available for $30. Visit nhfarmmuseum.org.

• The 125th Gilmanton Old Home Day is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. outside the Smith Meeting House (Meeting House and Governor roads, Gilmanton). Details on this year’s event are still being ironed out, but previous events have included live entertainment, a puppet show, a silent auction, an antique auto parade, an art show and more. Visit gilmantonnh.org/organizations/gilmanton-old-home-day for details as they become available.

• Head to Field of Dreams Community Park (48 Geremonty Drive, Salem) for the park’s annual Family Fun Day on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. A wide variety of activities is planned, including a petting farm, face-painting, bounce houses, food trucks, photo opportunities with superheroes and princesses, and more. Visit fieldofdreamsnh.org.

Candia’s Old Home Day will return on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Moore Park (74 High St., Candia). The event starts with a parade after a firemen’s homemade breakfast. Local crafters and artisans, town community booths, games, a wildlife exhibit, food and music will also be featured. Visit candiaoldhomeday.com.

Pembroke and Allenstown’s Old Home Day returns on Saturday, Aug. 24, starting with a parade down Main Street in Allenstown to Memorial Field (Exchange Street) in Pembroke. A fun-filled day is planned at the field, featuring two stages of live entertainment, antique cars, children’s games, a craft area, bounce houses and a fireworks display at dusk. Admission and parking are free. See “Pembroke & Allenstown Old Home Day 2024” on Facebook.

• Don’t miss this year’s Hopkinton State Fair, a Labor Day weekend tradition happening from Thursday, Aug. 29, to Monday, Sept. 2, at the fairgrounds (392 Kearsarge Ave., Contoocook). There will be livestock shows, a demolition derby, carnival rides, monster trucks, live entertainment, food and more. The fair hours are 5 to 10 p.m. on Thursday; 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday. See hsfair.org.

Cruising Downtown will return to the streets of downtown Manchester for a 23rd year on Saturday, Aug. 31, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Organized by the Manchester Rotary Club, the event will feature cars on display, along with food, live demonstrations, local vendors and two stages of live entertainment. Admission is free for spectators, and vehicle registration is $25. Visit cruisingdowntownmanchester.com.

• The Exeter UFO Festival returns to downtown Exeter on Saturday, Aug. 31, and Sunday, Sept. 1 — the event commemorates the anniversary of the “Exeter Incident” (an alleged UFO sighting on Sept. 3, 1965) by featuring in-depth talks and presentations from leading experts on UFOs, along with a variety of “intergalactic” children’s games and food, all to benefit the Exeter Area Kiwanis Club. See exeterkiwanis.com/exeter-ufo-festival.

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FOOD EVENTS

• Start your summer eating at Bentley’s Famous BBQ Pig Roast, Saturday, May 25, from noon to 6 p.m., hosted by the Biergarten at Anheuser-Busch, (221 Daniel Webster Hwy., Merrimack, 595-1202, budweisertours.com). Watch award-winning Pitmaster and owner of Bentley’s Famous BBQ Brandon Saldoni serve barbecue. A $25 ticket price includes the pig roast and first beverage. A $15 ticket is general admission with hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries, fried dough, kettle corn and ice cream for purchase. Children 3 and under are free. Visit budweisertours.com/mmktours.

• The Town of Bennington will host a Rhubarb Festival on Saturday, June 1, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Sawyer Memorial Park (Route 202) in Bennington. This celebration of all things rhubarb includes a craft fair, vendors, food trucks, children’s activities, a petting zoo, a story walk, music, plants, baked goods, jams, beverages and more. Follow the event page on Facebook @nhrhubarbfestival.

• Tickets are on sale now for the High Hopes Foundation’s seventh annual New Hampshire Bacon & Beer Festival, returning to Anheuser-Busch Brewery (221 Daniel Webster Hwy., Merrimack) on Saturday, June 1, with general admission from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. and VIP admission beginning at 12:30 p.m. Go to nhbaconbeer.com.

• The 37th Annual 97.5 WOKQ summer kick-off Chowder Festival will be at Prescott Park (105 Marcy St., Portsmouth) on Saturday, June 1, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Several local eateries will serve chowders and the festival will feature live music, kid-friendly activities, ice cream and more. Chowders will be available until the vendors run out. l Tickets cost $20; see prescottpark.org.

• The 15th Annual Herb & Garden Day, presented by the New Hampshire Herbal Network, returns to the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum (18 Highlawn Road, Warner) on Saturday, June 1, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The event features workshops tailored to all skill levels, along with plant and tree identification walks, an herbal market and plant sale, food vendors, children’s activities and more. Full-access general admission is $35 in advance. Visit nhherbalnetwork.org/herbday.

• The Friends of the Library of Windham will hold their 38th annual Strawberry Festival and Book Fair on Saturday, June 1, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Windham High School (64 London Bridge Road, Windham). The festival will feature homemade strawberry shortcake, live music, raffles, local vendors and games. Visit flowwindham.org.

• The Taste of Downtown Nashua, presented by Great American Downtown, returns to the Gate City on Wednesday, June 5, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. More than 30 participating restaurants, shops and other local businesses will have temporary food service set up inside their establishments, where samples will be served to ticket-holders. Tickets start at $39.99 per person and include access to samples from all of the event’s participating vendors. Visit downtownnashua.org/taste.

• An evening of Plant-Based Junk Food will be held at the Rockingham Brewing Co. (1 Corporate Park Drive, Unit 1, Derry, 216-2324, rockinghambrewing.com) on Wednesday, June 5, from 4 to 8 p.m. The Brewing Company, in conjunction with Vulture Food (vuturefood.com) will host an all-vegan popup. Details will be posted on the Brewery’s website closer to the event. Rockingham Brewing Co. hosts many food and drink events throughout the summer. Visit facebook.com/rockinghambrewing/events.

• Join world-renowned chef Aarón Sánchez for Live Free and Wine, an evening of food and wine at LaBelle Winery (14 Route 111, Derry, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) Sunday, June 9, at 6 p.m. (VIP reception at 5 p.m.). Nine award-winning chefs will come together to present the best cuisine New Hampshire has to offer, along with tastings of LaBelle wines. There will be a VIP reception and a silent auction. For tickets, visit emeril.ejoinme.org/NHwine. For more about upcoming food and wine events at LaBelle, visit labellewinery.com/public-winery-events.

• Online ordering for the 26th annual New Hampshire Jewish Food Festival, presented by Temple B’nai Israel (210 Court St., Laconia), opens on Saturday, June 15, and will continue through Sunday, July 7. Menu items will include savory brisket with gravy, freshly sliced corned beef, pastrami and tongue from Evan’s New York Style Deli in Marblehead, Mass., sweet creamy noodle kugel and a vast assortment of other home-cooked Jewish foods. Those who place their orders online will be prompted to select a time on either Friday, July 19, or Saturday, July 20, at Temple B’nai Israel. Visit tbinh.org/food-fest-menu to view the full menu.

• The St. Nicholas Greek Festival will return on Saturday, June 14, and Sunday, June 15, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. both days, at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church (40 Andrew Jarvis Drive, Portsmouth, 436-2733). This year’s Greek Festival will feature fresh lamb, moussaka, spanakopita (spinach pie), gyros, and Greek pastry. Visit stnicholasgreekfestival.com.

• Tickets are on sale for New Hampshire magazine’s annual Best of NH Party, happening Thursday, June 20, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at Flag Hill Distillery & Winery (297 N. River Road, Lee), with an additional VIP barrel tasting and tour from 5 to 6 p.m. Sample food and drink while listening to the 12-piece Scott Spradling Band. This event honors the 2024 Best of NH winners and supports the New Hampshire Food Bank. General admission tickets are $75; VIP Experience tickets are $115. Visit nhmagazine.com/best-of-nh.

• Get ready for the Kingston Fire Association’s Fifth Annual Brewfest, set to take place on Saturday, June 29, from 2 to 6 p.m. on the Plains in downtown Kingston (148 Main St.). More than 60 different beers, ciders and hard lemonade from at least 30 pourers will be available to sample at this 21+ event, which will also include food trucks and music. Tickets are $40 per person for full access (event is 21+ only) and $10 for designated drivers, and are available online now. Donations are also being accepted to the Kingston Fire Association. Visit kingstonbrew.com.

• The Hollis Strawberry Festival, presented by the Hollis Woman’s Club, returns for a 76th year to the Town Common (7 Monument Square, Hollis) on Sunday, June 23, from 2 to 4 p.m. Enjoy strawberry shortcake and other strawberry desserts while the Hollis Town Band performs. Face-painting, games and craft vendors are also part of the festival. Visit holliswomansclub.org.

• A family-friendly event featuring local food, drinks and entertainment, Farm-a-Q returns to Tuckaway Farm (36 Captain Smith Emerson Road, Lee) on Sunday, June 23, from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets begin at $25. Proceeds support the Heritage Harvest Project, whose mission is to promote regional heritage foods and agricultural diversity among farmers, chefs and local communities. See “Farm-a-Q” on Eventbrite to purchase tickets.

• Save the date for the annual Keep NH Brewing Festival, happening Saturday, July 13, at Kiwanis Riverfront Waterfront Park behind the Everett Arena (15 Loudon Road, Concord). General admission is from 1 to 4 p.m., with VIP admission beginning at noon. The festival is the signature fundraising event for the New Hampshire Brewers Association and features one of the largest gatherings of craft beers on tap, with more than 140 options to try and more than 50 breweries represented. Food trucks, local vendors and live music will be featured. See nhbrewers.org.

• Monadnock Music will host its annual Progressive Garden Party, featuring multiple tastings and performances across the Monadnock region, on Saturday, July 14, from noon to 4 p.m., with a rain date of Sunday, July 14, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. A botanical tour of the region, the event features unique food and drink options and live performances at each location. Tickets are $100 ($85 for Monadnock Music members). Visit monadnockmusic.org.

• On Thursday, July 18, from 5 to 6:30 p.m., The Cozy Tea Cart (104A Route 13, Brookline, 249-9111, thecozyteacart.com) will host Iced Tea RealiTea, an interactive lecture where attendees will learn about the history of iced tea in the U.S. as well as different brewing methods for loose tea and the healthiest ways to drink their tea iced. The cost is $30 per person, and registration is required two weeks in advance. The Cozy Tea Cart conducts tea tastings and lectures throughout the summer and the year. Visit thecozyteacart.com/events.

• The Smuttynose Brewing Co. (smuttynose.com) will host the 2nd Annual New Hampshire Wing Festival on Saturday, July 20, from noon to 4 p.m. at 105 Towle Farm Road in Hampton. Expect wings, music, ice-cold beer and more wings. Entry includes unlimited wing sampling, one 16-ounce Smuttynose beer, one bottle of water, and a ticket to cast your vote for “Best Wings of New Hampshire.” Visit smuttynose.com/event/new-hampshire-wing-festival-2.

• For the third year, the Colby Hill Inn (33 The Oaks, Henniker, 800-531-0330) will host its Annual Lobster Bake and Blueberry Feast on Sunday, July 21. A feast of seasonal summer foods will be served and original blues music will be played by the Rick Campbell Band. Tickets are $125 per person (plus sales tax and gratuity) including open bar (wine, signature cocktail/mocktail or beer) ($15 credit for non-alcohol drinkers). Tenderloin is available for anyone with seafood allergies (must order at RSVP). The Inn hosts several special events throughout the summer and the year; visit colbyhillinn.com.

• The Spicy Shark presents the third annual New England Hot Sauce Fest, returning to Smuttynose Brewing Co. (105 Towle Farm Road, Hampton) on Saturday, July 27, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event will feature more than two dozen local hot sauce companies selling and offering samples their spicy products, along with bounce houses, face-painting, several food trucks, a hot wing contest and four hot pepper eating contests. General-admission tickets are $13; VIP tickets are $17. Poceeds will benefit the Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation and the Seacoast Science Center. Visit newenglandhotsaucefest.com.

• The Great New England BBQ & Food Truck Festival returns for an eighth year to the Hampshire Dome (50 Emerson Road, Milford) on Saturday, Aug. 3, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The event will feature a crafter’s booth and a kids’ zone in addition to eats from local food trucks, along with craft beer, live music, a cornhole tournament and more. Visit gnefoodtruckfest.com.

• The Town of Windham Recreation department will host a Food Truck Festival and Car Show on the grounds of Windham High School (64 London Bridge Road, Windham) on Sunday, Aug. 11. In addition to eats from local food trucks, there will be music and games of cornhole. Contact the Windham Recreation office by phone at 965-1208 or by email at recreation@windhamnh.gov.

• The Mahrajan Middle Eastern Food Festival (bestfestnh.com) will take place Friday, Aug. 16, to Sunday, Aug. 18, at Our Lady of the Cedars Church (140 Mitchell St., Manchester, 623-8944, olocnh.org). Lebanese foods such as shawarma, falafel, lamb, grilled chicken and many types of pastries will be served.

Gate City Brewfest will return to Holman Stadium (67 Amherst St., Nashua) on Saturday, Aug. 24, with general admission from 1 to 5 p.m. and VIP admission beginning at noon. Unique for being a family-friendly brewfest, the event also features food, live music, a cornhole tournament, children’s activities and more. General-admission tickets are $35 in advance and $50 the day of the event, while VIP tickets are $70 (limited to 200 tickets) and tickets for designated drivers and attendees under the age of 21 are $15. Proceeds benefit the Nashua Police Athletic League. See gatecitybrewfestnh.com.

• Assumption Greek Orthodox Church (111 Island Pond Road, Manchester, 623-2045, assumptionnh.org) will hold its 2024 Greekfest on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 25, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. A full range of Greek foods will be served; there will be a loukoumades booth selling deep-fried dough balls covered in honey and powdered sugar, a gyro booth, a pastry booth and a bar. Visit the Church’s website for more information closer to the event.

• Food Truck Festivals of America presents the 10th annual Portsmouth Food Truck & Craft Beer Festival, happening at Cisco Brewers (35 Corporate Drive, Portsmouth) on Sunday, Aug. 18, with general admission from noon to 5 p.m. In addition to food trucks, the festival features craft beer, lawn games, music and more. General admission is $5 in advance or $10 at the gate (kids ages 10 and under are free). Visit foodtruckfestivalsofamerica.com/portsmouth.

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CONCERTS

• Nationally touring indie-folk “power duo” National Park Radio will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Thursday, May 23, at 7 p.m. Tickets begin at $16.

• High-energy performer Nat Zegree will take the stage at The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Thursday, May 23, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets begin at $42.

• Senior performing troupe Silver Stars will take the stage at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Friday, May 24, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, May 25, at 2 p.m. Tickets start at $12.

• Powerful singer Kat Wright will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Friday, May 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets begin at $16.

• The BoDeans will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St. in Nashua; nashuacenterforthearts.com, 800-657-8774) with Chris Trapper opening on Friday, May 24, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $29.

• New England-based blues band Frankie Boy & the Blues Express will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, May 24, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $30.

Parker McCollum will perform with Corey Kent and George Birgeat at BankNH Pavilion, (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com), as part of his Burn It Down tour, on Saturday, May 25, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

The Beach Boys will perform with Dave Mason at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Sunday, May 26, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $27.

• Rhythm and bluegrass family band Bitter Pill will performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, May 26, at 8 p.m. Tickets begin at $30.

• Minnesota-based musician Chastity Brown will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Tuesday, May 28, at 7 p.m. Tickets begin at $30.

• Feel-good pop musician Ryan Montbleau will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Thursday, May 30, and Friday, May 31, at 7 p.m. Tickets begin at $15.

•Singer Paula Cole will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Friday, May 31, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• High-energy band Bella’s Bartok will play at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Friday, May 31, at 8 p.m. with opener Bitter Pill. Tickets are $23.75 in advance, $5 more at the door.

Cole Swindell, Dylan Scott and Mackenzie Carpenter will perform at the BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Saturday, June 1, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $41.55.

• Grammy-nominated songwriter Reed Foehl will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, June 1, at 8 p.m. Tickets begin at $31.

• New Hampshire country singer Taylor Hughes will play a Sunday Sessions performance sponsored by the New Hampshire Music Collective at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) on Sunday, June 2, at 6 p.m. Tickets are $18.75.

The Portsmouth Symphony Orchestra will performits spring concert at The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, June 2, at 3 p.m. Tickets start at $23.50.

The Granite State Ringers, New Hampshire’s only elite handbell choir, will perform at the Spotlight Room (96 Hanover St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) on Sunday, June 2, at 3 p.m. Tickets are $50.

• Critically acclaimed pianist BLKBOK will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, June 2, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $31.

• Toronto songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Abigail Lapell will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Sunday, June 2, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Master lyricist John Hiatt will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Sunday, June 2, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $89.

Mr. Joe Jackson Presents: Joe Jackson Solo and the Music of Max Champion at The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Monday, June 3, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $71.

• Chicagotribute band Leonid and Friends will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Wednesday, June 5, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• American roots musician Charley Crockett will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Wednesday, June 5, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $42 in advance, $47 at the door.

• Kenny Chesney tribute act No Shoes Nation will performat LaBelle Winery Amherst (345 Route 101, Amherst, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) on Thursday, June 6, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $40

• James Taylor/Simon and Garfunkel tribute act Good Acoustics will performat LaBelle Winery Derry (14 Route 111, Derry, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) Thursday, June 6, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $40.

• Gritty and raw folk-rock outfit The Wolff Sisters will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Friday, June 7, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Master lyricist and satirical storyteller John Hyatt will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Friday, June 7, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

• Country icon Jo Dee Messina will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Friday, June 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $27.

• The classic ’80s band Stryper will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, June 7, at 8 p.m., as part of their To Hell With the Amps: the Unplugged Tour. The performance will include acoustic, stripped-down versions of the band’s classic songs. Tickets start at $47.

MUSE: A Salute to Divas, fronted by two New England-based female vocalists, happens at The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Friday, June 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $38.

• Indie rockers The Mallett Brothers Bandwill perform with Medium and Bear at The Range (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com) Saturday, June 8, at 5 p.m. Tickets cost $34 in advance, $40 at the door.

• Jazz-based Phishtribute band Jazz Is Phish will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Saturday, June 8, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $20.

• New Orleans-style musicians Soggy Po’ Boys will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) on Saturday, June 8, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Symphony NH will perform The Music of John Williams – Star Wars and More at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Saturday, June 8, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets begin at $20.75. A pre-concert talk about the pieces performed will take place at 6:30 p.m.

• Journey cover band Voyage will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com), Saturday, June 8, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $21.

• The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) will host a Live Jukebox Request Night with the Scott Spradling Band Saturday, June 8, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $29.

• Led Zeppelin tribute show Kashmir comes to the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Saturday, June 8, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $29.

• Banjo-based jazz band The Alison Brown Quintet will perform at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Sunday, June 9, at 2 p.m. Tickets are $29.

The Ted Herbert Community Big Band will take the stage at Majestic Theatre (880 Page St., Manchester, 669-7469, majestictheatre.net) Sunday, June 9, at 3 p.m. Tickets are $15 through Majestic’s website.

• Police guitarist Andy Summers will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Sunday, June 9, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• Singer-songwriter Ellis Paul will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, June 9, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $36.

The Pixies and Modest Mouse will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lanek, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Tuesday, June 11, at 6:30 p.m., with special guests Cat Power. Tickets start at $48.65.

• Classic country and folk singer Kathy Mattea will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Tuesday, June 11, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $46.75 in advance and cost $5 more at the door.

• Contemporary blues artist Keb’ Mo’ will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Tuesday, June 11, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

Hootie and the Blowfish will perform with Collective Soul and Edwin McCain at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Thursday, June 13, at 7 p.m., as part of their Summer Camps With Trucks tour. Tickets start at $67.45.

• The Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) will host Trans-Canada Highwaymen, featuring Moe Berg, Chris Murphy, Craig Northey and Steven Page, Thursday, June 13, at 8 p.m. The Canadian supergroup will perform classic Canadian rock songs originally recorded by each member of the band. Tickets start at $54.

• Grateful Dead tribute band Dead Meat will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Friday, June 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $28.50.

• Hawaiian musician Jake Shimabukuro will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Friday, June 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

• South American folk musicians Acoustic Nomads will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Friday, June 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Blues and rock band The Senie Hunt Project will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Friday, June 14, at 7:30 p.m.Tickets are $23.75 in advance, $5 more at the door.

• New England-based Eagles tribute band Another Tequila Sunrise will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Friday, June 14, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

Lainey Wilson will perform with Ian Munsick and Zach Top at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Saturday, June 15, at 7 p.m., as part of their Country’s Cool Again tour. Tickets start at $98.95.

• Eaglestribute band Another Tequila Sunrise will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Saturday, June 15, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $12 through the Colonial Theatre’s website.

• 1970s and ’80s hit makers Little River Band will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Saturday, June 15, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $27.

Cheek to Cheek, a Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga tribute act, will perform Saturday, June 15, at 8 p.m., at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com). Tickets start at $35.

• Legendary Celtic act Gaelic Storm will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) on Sunday, June 16, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $39 through the Colonial’s website.

• The Dead Tongues’ Ryan Gustafson will performwith Natalie Jane Hill at The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) on Tuesday, June 18, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Tribute band The Magic of Motown will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts’ (44 S Main St. in Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Chubb Theatre on Tuesday, June 18, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $57.75.

• Bass-singing folk group The Wellermen will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Tuesday, June 18, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

• The progressive rock band dada will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Tuesday, June 18, at 8 p.m. dada is known for its vocal harmonies and melodic power pop layered with inspired psychedelic and experimental rock impulses. Tickets are $39.

• Blues guitarist and singer Bonnie Raitt will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Tuesday, June 18, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $42.

• The Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) will host An Evening With Gaelic Storm Wednesday, June 19, at 8 p.m. This band is one of the biggest Celtic acts in the business. Tickets start at $39.

John Fogerty will perform with George Thorogood and Hearty Har at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Wednesday, June 19, at 6:50 p.m. as part of their Celebrationtour. Tickets start at $48.65.

• Motown tribute act The Magic of Motown will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org), Wednesday, June 19, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $70.

• Legendary ’90s band Cake will play at Cisco Brewers Portsmouth (35 Corporate Drive, Portsmouth, 380-7575, ciscobrewersportsmouth.com) on Thursday, June 20, at 8 p.m. Advance tickets are $51.50 through the Casino Ballroom’s website (casinoballroom.com) or $56.50 on the day of the show.

• Grateful Dead cover band Joe Russo’s Almost Dead will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Thursday, June 20, at 8:30 p.m. and Friday, June 21, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets cost $71.50 in advance and $76.50 at the door.

• Eclectic improv-rock band Umphrey’s McGee will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Thursday, June 20, at 8:30 p.m. and Friday, July 5, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets cost $35 in advance, $40 on the day of the show.

• U2 tribute act Joshua Tree will beat LaBelle Winery Derry (14 Route 111 in Derry, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) Thursday, June 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $40.

• ’90s icon Paula Cole will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, (800) 657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Friday, June 21, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

• Country musician Rodney Atkinswill perform with Annie Brobst at The Range Live Music and Concert Venue (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com) Friday, June 21, at 5 p.m. Tickets start at $56 in advance, $65 on the day of the show.

• Van Morrison tribute act Moondance will performat LaBelle Winery Amherst (345 Route 101 in Amherst, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) Friday, June 21, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $40.

• Iconic saxophonist Kenny G performsat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Friday, June 21, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $87.

• Folk-rock band Max Creekwill perform with Rabbit’s Foot at The Range (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com) on Saturday, June 22, at 5 p.m. Tickets start at $34 in advance, $40 on the day of the show.

• British Invasion tribute band The Brit Pack will perform at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Saturday, June 22, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $35.

• Legendary saxophonist Kenny G will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Saturday, June 22, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $59.

Pride Anthems, a musical tribute to iconic LGTBQ+ music, will take the stage at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Saturday, June 22, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• Member of the classic rock band Yes Jon Anderson will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts’ (44 S Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Chubb Theater on Saturday, June 22, at 7:30 p.m., with opening act The Band Geeks. Tickets start at $59.

• The Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) will host Magical Mystery Doors – Beatles, Zeppelin, Doors Tribute Saturday, June 22, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

• Double platinum-certified singer-songwriter Hailey Reinhart will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, June 23, at 2 and 7 p.m., and Monday June 24, at 6 and 8 p.m. Tickets start at $61.

Michael Franti and Spearhead with Trevor Hall will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Tuesday, June 25, at 6 p.m. as part of their Togetherness tour. Tickets cost $67 in advance or $72 on the day of the show.

• Singer-songwriter Clay Cook will perform at the Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Thursday, June 27, 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $28.

Phil Vassar will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Thursday, June 27, at 8 p.m. as part of his Hits and Heroes Tour. Tickets start at $50.

• Indie bands Tiger Saw and Sneaky Miles will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road in Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Friday, June 28, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $16.

• Leading practitioners of the lost art of the guitar instrumental Nick Lowe and Los Straightjackets will perform at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Friday, June 28, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

Welcome to The Club: A Musical Cachet of The Great American Crooners will take the stage at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Friday, June 28, from 7:30 to 9 p.m. This is a reinvention of the classic Copacabana Club with a full 19-piece Big Band and hits from Frank Sinatra, Nat ‘King’ Cole, Bing Crosby, Bobby Darin, Mel Tormé, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr. and Tony Bennett. Tickets are $29.

Club d’Elf has been helping audiences lose track of time for 25 years with its mesmerizing synthesis of Moroccan traditional music and electronic dubbed-out funk. The band will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts (44 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Friday, June 28, at 7:30 p.m.Tickets cost $30.75 in advance and $5 more at the door.

• Van Morrison tribute act Moondance will perform at the Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Friday, June 28, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $38.

• Catch the classic British band The Sweet at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, June 28, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $45.

• Eclectic musical duo Thost will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org), Friday, June 28, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $30.

An Elvis Tribute Concert starring Robert Black will take the stage at Fulchino Vineyard (187 Pine Hill Road, Hollis, 438-5984, fulchinovineyard.com) Saturday, June 29, at 6 p.m. Tickets are $29.

• Legendary performers The Temptations will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Saturday, June 29, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $59.

• Hard-rocking band Cathedral will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts’ (225-1111, ccanh.com) BNH Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord) Saturday, June 29, at 7:30 p.m.Tickets start at $23.75 in advance, $5 more at the door.

• Hair metal tribute act Back to the ’80s will perform at the Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Saturday, June 29, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

A Day to Remember will perform with The Story So Far, Four Year Strong and Pain of Truth at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Sunday, June 30, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $40.80.

• Singer-songwriter Josh Ritter will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Sunday, June 30, at 7 p.m. as part of his Works in Progress and Songs You Know tour. Tickets are $50.

• Folk-pop singer-songwriters Grace Pettis and Henry Honkonen will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, June 30, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $24.

James Taylor & His All-Star Band will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Monday, July 1, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $62.70.

• Two-time Grammy winner Jason Mraz will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Wednesday, July 3, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $150.

Kidz Bop is at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Wednesday, July 3, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $41.30.

• Country acts Country Night Live and Whiskey 6 will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Wednesday, July 3, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

• High-energy Americana band The Mallett Brothers Band will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road in Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) on Friday, July 5, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Bluegrass-rock combo Kitchen Dwellerswill perform with Jatoba at The Range Live Music and Concert Venue (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com), Friday, July 5, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $41 in advance, $49 on the day.

The Dave Matthews Tribute Band will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Friday, July 5, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

• Moody Bluesguitarist Justin Hayward and 1980s singer-songwriter Christopher Cross will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Saturday, July 6, at 7 p.m. with support from Mike Dawes. Tickets start at $99.

• Sublimetribute band Badfish! will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Saturday, July 6, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $29 in advance, $34 on the day of the show.

• Singer-songwriters Ian Archibold & Ian Galipeau will play a Sunday Sessions performance sponsored by the New Hampshire Music Collective at the Cantin Room at Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) on Sunday, July 7, at 6 p.m. Tickets are $18.75.

• Classical pianist Daniel Adam Maltz will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) on Monday, July 8, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $28.

• Country artist Priscilla Block will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Sunday, July 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $28 in advance, $33 on the day of the show.

• Rock anthem band The Used will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Wednesday, July 10, at 7 p.m. with Story of the Year and Amira Elfeky. Tickets cost $51 in advance, $56 on the day of the show.

Third Eye Blind with special guests Yellow Card and Arizona will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Thursday, July 11, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $41.74.

• Passionate and emotional musician Erick Baker will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Thursday, July 11, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $32.

• “Live at the Fillmore” Allman Brothers Tribute will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Thursday, July 11, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $37.

• Jimmy Buffet tribute act Good Acoustics will performat LaBelle Winery Derry (14 Route 111, Derry, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) Thursday, July 11, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $40.

• Legendary reggae band The Wailerswill perform with Dis-N-Dat Band and Supernothing at The Range (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com) on Friday, July 12, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $42 in advance, $52 on the day of the show.

• Blues legends Roomful of Blues will perform at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Friday, July 12, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $29.

Aaron Lewis will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Thursday, July 11, and Friday, July 12, at 8 p.m. as part of his American Patriot tour. Tickets start at $31.

• Catch The Bacon Brothers at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, July 12, at 8 p.m. as part of their Free Standing tour. Tickets are $61.

• Grateful Dead tribute act Dead to the Core will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) Saturday, July 13, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• 1980s hair band-influenced act Aquanett will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Saturday, July 13, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $22 through the Opera House’s website.

Green River, a Creedence Clearwater Revival and John Fogerty tribute,will perform at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) Saturday, July 13, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35.

• “Beginnings” — Celebrating the Music of Chicago will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Saturday, July 13, at 8 p.m.. Tickets are $37.

• Reggae band RDMTION will perform at Crow’s Feat Farm (178 Drinkwater Road, Kensington, 498-6262, crowsfeatfarm.org) Sunday, July 14, at 3 p.m. Tickets start at $10.

Slightly Stoopid, Dirty Heads, Common Kings, and the Elovaters will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Sunday, July 14, at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $51.

• Jazz powerhouse Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Sunday, July 14, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $37 in advance, $42 on the day of the show.

Hailstorm, I prevail, Hollywood Undead, and Fit for a King will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Monday, July 15, at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $41.

Luke Bryan will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com), as part of his Mind of a Country Boy tour, with Huntergirl and Lily Rose Thursday, July 18, Friday, July 19, and Saturday, July 20, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $89.

Brit Floyd, one of the top Pink Floyd tribute acts,will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Thursday, July 18, and Friday, July 19, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $31.

Hollywood Nights – The Bob Seger Tribute will be performed at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, July 19, at 5 p.m. Tickets start at $45. This is a fundraising event for the Center for Life Management (centerforlifemanagement.org).

• Paul Simon tribute act Hearts & Boneswill perform at The Range Live Music and Concert Venue (96 Old Turnpike Road in Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com) on Saturday, July 20, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $34 in advance, $40 on the day of the show.

• Soul and funk bands Trade and Crawlspace will perform at the Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $15 in advance, $5 more at the door.

• Classic rock tribute act Fortune will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets are available through the Opera House’s website.

• AC/DC tribute act Dirty Deeds: the AC/DC Experience and Through The Doors will take the stage at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $21.

• Doors tribute band Peace Frog will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $29.

• North America’s premier Celtic event, Tartan Terrors, will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Sunday, July 21, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

Daryl Hall and Elvis Costello and the Imposters will perform with Charlie Sextonat BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Monday, July 22, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $48.

O.A.R., Fitz & the Tantrums and DJ Logic will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Tuesday, July 23, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

• Singer-songwriter Langhorne Slim will perform at the Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Tuesday, July 23, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $53.75 in advance, $5 more at the door.

John Lodge of The Moody Blues will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800)-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Tuesday, July 23, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

• “THE MUSIC OF ABBA – Direct From Sweden” will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Tuesday, July 23, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $39.

G. Love & Special Sauce with Brett Dennen and Mihali will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Wednesday, July 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $30 in advance, $35 on the day of the show.

John Lodge of The Moody Blues will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St. in Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Wednesday, July 24, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

Godsmack will perform with Nothing More and Flat Black at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Thursday, July 25, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $41.

• Country singer Kameron Marlowe will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Thursday, July 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $27 in advance, $32 on the day of the show.

• Beatles tribute act The Fab Four – Ultimate Tribute, will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Friday, July 26, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $27.

• Grateful Dead tribute act Zach Nugent’s Dead Setwill perform at The Range (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com), Friday, July 26, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $39 in advance, $45 on the day of the show.

• Irish folk band The High Kings will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Friday, July 26, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• Ozzy Osbourne tribute act Crazy Train will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Friday, July 26, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $25 through the Opera House’s website.

Dan & Shay will perform with Jake Owen and Dylan Marlow at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com), as part of their Heartbreak on the Map tour, Saturday, July 27, at 7 p.m.

• “Bruce in the USA” a tribute to the E Street Band’s musical legacy, will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Saturday, July 27, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $39.

• Eaglestribute act Dark Desert Eagles – The Ultimate Eagles Tribute, will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com), Saturday, July 27, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $21.

The Windham Community Band will perform at Crow’s Feat Farm (178 Drinkwater Road, Kensington, 498-6262, crowsfeatfarm.org) on Sunday, July 28, at 3 p.m. Tickets start at $10.

Switchfoot, Blue October, and Matt Nathanson will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Sunday, July 28, at 7 p.m., as part of their Help From My Friends tour. Tickets cost $71 in advance, $76 on the day of the show.

• Celtic band The High Kings will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Sunday, July 28, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39 through the Flying Monkey website.

Train will perform with Yacht Rock Revue at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com), as part of their Summer Road Trip tour, Sunday, July 28, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $38.

• Jerry Lee Lewis tribute act Great Balls of Fire will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) on Tuesday, July 30, at 8 p.m.

• Singer-songwriter Nico Moon will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) with Sophia Scott on Thursday, Aug. 1, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $27 in advance, $32 on the day of the show.

• Country band Texas Hill will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Friday, Aug. 2, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $24.

• Talking Heads keyboardist Jerry Harrison and King Crimson singer-guitarist Adrian Belew will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Friday, Aug. 2, at 8 p.m. as part of their Remain in Light tour. Tickets begin at $65; there will be a ticketed meet and greet at 5 p.m.

• Afro-futurist band Steel Pulse will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Friday, Aug. 2, at 8 p.m. General admission tickets are $39 in advance through the Ballroom’s website, or $44 on the day of the show.

Rock N Roll Circus Featuring James Montgomery, Jon Butcher, and Johnny A will play at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Friday, Aug. 2, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $34. There will be a ticketed VIP event at 5 p.m. This show is produced by Rockin’ 4 Vets/Alive & Kicking Productions, which produces benefit concerts throughout New England to support organizations assisting veterans on issues related to PTSD, addiction and homelessness.

• Kenny Chesney tribute act No Shoes Nation will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Friday, Aug. 2, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

• ABBA tribute act Dancing Dream will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Saturday, Aug. 3, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22 through the Opera House’s website.

33 1/3 Live’s Killer Queen Experience will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Saturday, Aug. 3, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $39.

• Led Zeppelin tribute band Get The Led Ou will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Saturday, Aug. 3, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $33 in advance or $38 on the day of the show.

The Happy Together Tour 2024, featuring The Turtles, Jay and the Americans, The Association, Badfinger, the Vogues, and The Cowsills, will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Sunday, Aug. 4, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $25.

• Heavy metal bands Lamb of God and Mastodon will perform at the SNHU Arena (555 Elm St., Manchester, 644-5000, snhuarena.com) Sunday, Aug. 4, at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $37.

Styx and Foreigner will perform with John Waite at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Sunday, Aug. 4, at 6:45 p.m. on their Renegades and Juke Box Heroes tour. Tickets start at $54.

311 will perform with Awolnation and Neon Trees at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Tuesday, Aug. 6, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $21.

Teddy Swims will perform with Freak Freely at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $37.

• Funk-Americana trio Assembly of Dust will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Thursday, Aug. 8, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $43.

• All-woman string band Della Mae will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Friday, Aug. 9, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $25 through the Flying Monkey website.

• Tribute act That Motown Band will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Friday, Aug. 9, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available through the Opera House’s website.

Jacob Tolliver will perform at Fulchino Vineyard (187 Pine Hill Road, Hollis, 438-5984, fulchinovineyard.com) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 6:30 p.m.

• Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute act Vyntyge Skynrd will perform at Lakeport Opera House (781 Union Ave., Laconia, 519-7506, lakeportopera.com) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 8 p.m. Tickets are available through the Opera House’s website.

Slipkid – A Celebration of The Who will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com), Friday, Aug. 9, at 8 p.m. Tickets begin at $21.

• Jam-rock trio Wellfleet will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Friday, Aug. 9, at 8 p.m. Tickets begin at $24.

• Neil Diamond tribute act Cherry Cherry will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $37.

The Doobie Brothers and Steve Winwood will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $38.

• A capella greats Straight, No Chaser will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $58.

Face 2 Face – A Tribute to Elton John and Billy Joel will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

• Award-winning musician Tyler Hilton will performat The Music Hall Portsmouth (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Saturday, Aug. 10, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $36.

A Classical Confection of classical music will perform at Crow’s Feat Farm (178 Drinkwater Road, Kensington, 498-6262, crowsfeatfarm.org) on Sunday, Aug. 11, at 3 p.m. Tickets start at $10.

• Fleetwood Mac tribute act Rumours of Fleetwood Mac will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Wednesday, Aug. 14, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

Slipknot will perform with Knocked Loose and Orbit Culture as part of their Here Comes the Pain 25th Anniversary tour at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Wednesday, Aug. 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $69.

• Disco icons KC & The Sunshine Band will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Wednesday, Aug. 14, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $31.

Dierks Bentley will perform with Chase Rice and the Randy Rogers Band at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane in Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Thursday, Aug. 15, at 7 p.m.

Lindsey Stirling will perform with Walk Off the Earth at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Friday, Aug. 16, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $44.

1964 – The Tribute, a recreation of Beatles performances from 1964, will take the stage at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Friday, Aug. 16, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• Country singer Brett Young will perform with Mackenzie Porter at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Friday, Aug. 16, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $67 in advance or $72 on the day of the show.

Whiskey Myers will perform with Blackberry Smoke and Eddie Flint at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Saturday, Aug. 17, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $41.

Tom Rush will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St. in Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Saturday, Aug. 17, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $49 through the Flying Monkey website.

• Seminal third-wave ska band Save Ferris will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Saturday, Aug. 17, at 7:30 p.m.

• Singer-songwriter Pete Kilpatrick will performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org), Saturday, Aug. 17, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $16 in advance, $20 day of show.

• Rising country star Dustin Lynch will performat the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Saturday, Aug. 17, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $67 in advance, $72 on the day of the show.

• Singer-songwriter Bo Bice will play at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Sunday, Aug. 18, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $39.

Creed will perform with Tonic and Finger Eleven as part of their Summer of 99 tourat BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Tuesday, Aug. 20, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $87.

Cage the Elephant will perform with Young the Giant, Bakar and Willow Avalon at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Wednesday, Aug. 21, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $43.

• New Hampshire bands GIRLSPIT, Burly Girlies, Hell Beach & Fun City Fan Club will perform at the Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Friday, Aug. 23, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $15 in advance, $5 more at the door.

ZZ Top and Lynyrd Skynyrd will perform with The Outlaws at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Friday, Aug. 23, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $41.

• New England’s premier Pink Floyd tribute act Echoes of Floyd will perform at the Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Saturday, Aug. 24, at 7:30 p.m.

• Classic rock-jazz trio Sarah Blacker & the Light will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Saturday, Aug. 24, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $30.

Jason Aldean will perform with Hailey Whitters, Chase Matthew, and Austin Snell as part of his Highway Desperado tour at the BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Saturday, Aug. 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $67.

• Talking Heads tribute act Start Making Sensewill perform at The Range Live Music and Concert Venue (96 Old Turnpike Road, Mason, 878-1324, therangemason.com), Saturday, Aug. 24, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $39 in advance, or $45 on the day of the show.

• Trance arena rock combo Perpetual Groove will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, Aug. 25, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $40.50.

• Bluegrass duo Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley will performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) Sunday, Aug. 25, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $30.

• Tribute band Sons of Cream will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) Sunday, Aug. 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• 1990s pop stars Joey Fatone and AJ McLean will perform their show “A Legendary Night” at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Sunday, Aug. 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $71 in advance, $76 on the day of the show.

Deep Purple and Yes will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Wednesday, Aug. 28, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

• Queentribute act One Night of Queen will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Wednesday, Aug. 28, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

• Canadian folk duo Rachel Davis & Darren McMullen will performat The Word Barn (66 Newfields Road, Exeter, 244-0202, thewordbarn.com) on Thursday, Aug. 29, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $15.

• Queentribute act One Night of Queen will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd. in Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) Thursday, Aug. 29, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $21.

• The Band tribute act The Weight Band will perform at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) Friday, Aug. 30, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $34.

• Tribute band Marcus Rezak’s Gumbo Live Phish Experience will perform at the Bank of New Hampshire Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Friday, Aug. 30, at 9 p.m. Tickets cost $24 in advance, $5 more at the door.

Todd Hearon & Tiny Dog Fight will performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, Aug. 31, at 8 p.m.

Bret Michaels will perform with Chris Janson, Don Felder, Dee Snider and Lou Gramm at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) Saturday, Aug. 31, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $24.

Tedeschi Trucks Band will perform with Margo Price at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com) on Sunday, Sept. 1, at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

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COMEDY

Nick Callas will performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Friday, May 24, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $24.

• Catch the Tupelo Night of Comedy, featuring Brad Mastrangelo, Steve Scarfo and Jeff Koen at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Saturday, May 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

Will Noonan will perform at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road, Manchester, 206-3888, chunkys.com/movie-theater/chunkysmanchester) on Saturday, May 25, 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Juston McKinney will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) on Saturday, May 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $36.

Jason Cordova, Liam Hales, Jim McCue and Jack Lynch will perform at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, Mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, May 25, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Dave Rattigaon will perform at Murphy’s Taproom (494 Elm St., Manchester, 644-3535, scampscomedy.com/shows) on Saturday, May 25, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Piff the Magic Dragon will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) on Thursday, May 30, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

Piff the Magic Dragon will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) on Friday, May 31, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $39.

Brian Glowacki and Friends will perform at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) on Friday, May 31, at 7:30 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $24.

Tony V will perform at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, Mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, June 1, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Hasan Minhaj will perform at the Nashua Center for the Arts (201 Main St., Nashua, 800-657-8774, nashuacenterforthearts.com) on Thursday, June 6, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $49.50.

Lenny Clark performs at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) on Friday, June 7, at 7:30 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $24.

Hasan Minhaj will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) on Friday, June 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $49.

Jim McCue and Liam Hales will take the stage at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, June 8, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.

• Catch Happy Hour Comedy featuring Matt Shore at The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, June 8, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $18.

Brian Beaudoin will perform at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road, Manchester, 206-3888, chunkys.com/movie-theater/chunkysmanchester) on Saturday, June 8, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwoodwill performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Thursday, June 13, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $56.

• See Tom Cotter at The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) on Friday, June 14, at 7:30 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Max Dolcelli, Andrew Breen, Bill Campbell and Liam Hales will perform at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, Mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, June 15, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Andy Beningowill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, June 15, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $24.

Eddie B. will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts’ (44 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Chubb Theatre, Saturday, June 15, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets begin at $34.75.

Mike Hanley performs at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road, Manchester, 206-3888, chunkys.com/movie-theater/chunkysmanchester) on Saturday, June 15, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Corey B.will performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Monday, June 17, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $35.

Brian Glowacki, Ryan Gartley and Tony Moschetto will perform at Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Friday, June 21, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $22.

Kerri and Carolyn’s PSU Scene of the Crime Comedy will take the stage at The Flying Monkey (39 Main St., Plymouth, 536-2551, flyingmonkeynh.com) on Friday, June 21, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $25.

Pat McGannwill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Friday, June 21, and Saturday, June 22, at 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. Tickets start at $34.

• Comedy at the Rex brings Jim Colliton to The Rex Theatre (823 Amherst St., Manchester, 668-5588, palacetheatre.org) on Friday, June 21, at 7:30 and 9 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Pete Davidson will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Saturday, June 22, at 7 and 10 p.m. as part of his Prehabtour. Tickets start at $67.

Will Noonan performs at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road, Manchester, 206-3888, chunkys.com/movie-theater/chunkysmanchester) on Saturday, June 22, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Jimmy Cash’s School’s Out! comedy show will beat LaBelle Winery Derry (14 Route 111, Derry, 672-9898, labellewinery.com) on Thursday, June 27, at 7:15 p.m. Tickets are $40.

Nurse Blake will perform at the Casino Ballroom (169 Ocean Blvd., Hampton, 929-4100, casinoballroom.com) on Saturday, June 29, at 8 p.m. as part of his Shock Advised tour. Tickets start at $43.

Karen Morganwill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, June 29, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $30.

• Live Comedy features Tom Cotter at Chunky’s Cinema Pub (707 Huse Road in Manchester, 206-3888, chunkys.com/movie-theater/chunkysmanchester) on Saturday, June 29, 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

Cam Bertrandwill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Friday, July 12, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $26.

Johnny Ater will perform at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, Mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, July 13, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Dulcé Sloanwill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Sunday, July 14, at 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $32.

Jackie Fabulouswill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org), Thursday, July 18, at 6 p.m. Tickets start at $29.

Bob Marley will perform at the Colonial Theatre Laconia (609 Main St., Laconia, 657-8774, coloniallaconia.com) Friday, July 19, and Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $40.

Robert Kellywill performat The Music Hall (28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, July 20, at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $36.

• Tupelo Night of Comedy features Drew Dunn, Paul Landwehr and Andrea Henry at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Saturday, July 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $25.

Impractical Jokers will perform at BankNH Pavilion (72 Meadowbrook Lane, Gilford, 293-4700, banknhpavilion.com), as part of their Drive, Drive, Drive tour, on Friday, July 26, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $41.

Karen Morgan and Shawn Ruiz will perform at McCue’s Comedy Club at the Roundabout Diner (508 Portsmouth Traffic Circle, Portsmouth, 844-424-2420, Mccuescomedyclub.com) on Saturday, July 27, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.

Orlando Leybawill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Saturday, Aug. 3, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $28.

Lenny Clark is at the Tupelo Music Hall (10 A St., Derry, 437-5100, tupelomusichall.com) on Friday, Aug. 9, at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $35.

Garrison Keillor will perform at the Capitol Center for the Arts’ (44 S. Main St., Concord, 225-1111, ccanh.com) Chubb Theatre on Friday, Aug. 9, at 7:30 p.m.Tickets begin at $53.75.

Chris Franjolawill performat The Music Hall Lounge (131 Congress St., Portsmouth, 436-2400, themusichall.org) on Friday, Aug. 16, at 8:30 p.m. Tickets start at $32.

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THEATER

Into the Breeches! by George Brant, produced by Lend Me a Theater (lendmeatheater.org), runs May 24 through June 9 with shows Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets $25 for adults, $22 for students/seniors/members, $19 for senior members.

The Wizard of Oz presented by The Kids Coop Theatre will run on Friday, May 24, at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 25, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, May 26, at 1 p.m. at Derry Opera House (29 West Broadway, Derry, kidscooptheatre.ludus.com, 765-8593) Tickets are $15.

25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee will be performed by the Manchester Community Theatre Players at The MCTP Theatre at North End Montessori School (698 Beech St., Manchester) Friday, May 31, through Sunday, June 2. See manchestercommunitytheatre.com.

42nd Street runs Friday, May 31, through Sunday, June 23, at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester; palacetheatre.org, 668-5588) with shows Fridays at 7:30 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 7:30 p.m., and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $28 to $49.

Paradise Now! will be presented by Theatre Kapow at the Bank of NH Stage (16 S. Main St., Concord; ccanh.com) on Friday, June 7, at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 8, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, June 9, at 2 p.m. See tkapow.com.

William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (Abridged) is presented by Cue Zero Theatre Company at the Arts Academy of New Hampshire (19 Keewaydin Drive, Salem, onthestage.tickets/cue-zero-theatre-company) on Friday, June 21, at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 22, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, June 23, at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15.

Sleuth presented by The Majestic Academy of Dramatic Arts will run on Friday, June 21, at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 22, at 2 and 7 p.m., and Sunday, June 23, at 2 p.m. at the Majestic Theatre (880 Page St., Manchester, majestictheatre.net, 669-7469). Tickets are $15 and $20.

• The young performers of the Palace Youth Theatre Camp will present shows this summer at the Palace Theatre (80 Hanover St., Manchester; palacetheatre.org, 668-5588). These include Alice and Wonderland ‘Jr. on Friday, July 5, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, July 6, at 11 a.m.; 101 Dalmatians ‘Kids’ on Friday, July 12, at 7 p.m.; Newsies ‘Jr.’on Friday, July 26, at 7 p.m. & Saturday, July 27, at 11 a.m.; The Jungle Book ‘Kids’ on Friday, Aug. 2, at 7 p.m. ; The Wizard of Oz ‘Youth Edition’on Friday, Aug. 16, at 7 p.m. & Saturday, August 17, at 11 a.m.; andWilly Wonka ‘Kids’on Saturday, Aug. 24, at 12 p.m.

Heathers: The Musical by Kevin Murphy & Laurence O’Keefe, based on the 1989 film, produced by Ro Gavin Collaborative Theater and presented by Hatbox Theatre (715-2315, hatboxnh.com) and Manchester Community Theatre Players, runs July 12 through July 21, with shows Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. at MCTP Theater at the North End Montessori School in Manchester (689 Beech St.) Tickets cost $28 for adults, $25 for students/seniors/members, $22 for senior members. See hatboxnh.com for content details.

All Shook Up presented by Majestic Productions (Adults) will run on Friday, July 12, at 7 p.m., Saturday, July 13, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, July 14, at 2 p.m. at Derry Opera House (29 West Broadway, Derry, majestictheatre.net, 669-7469). Tickets are $15 and $22.

Legally Blonde The Musicalis presented by Ovation Theatre Co. Friday, July 19, and Saturday, July 20, featuring performers ages 15 to adult at the Derry Opera House (29 West Broadway in Derry). See ovationtc.com.

Cruel Intentions: The ‘90s Musical is presented by Hatbox Theatre (715-2315, hatboxnh.com) and Manchester Community Theatre Players from Aug. 2 through Aug. 11 with shows Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. at the North End Montessori School’s MCTP Theatre (698 Beech St., Manchester). Tickets $28 for adults, $25 for students/seniors/members, $22 for senior members. See hatboxnh.com for content details.

Nunsense Jamboree presented by The Majestic Studio Theatre will run on Friday, Aug. 9, at 7 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 10, at 2 and 7 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 11, at 2 p.m. at the Majestic Theatre (880 Page St. in Manchester, majestictheatre.net, 669-7469). Tickets are $15 and $20.

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ART EVENTS

• See the four artists participating in this year’s Nashua International Sculpture Symposium at work on their pieces at Picker Artists (3 Pine St. in Nashua), where they are working Mondays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. according to nashuasculpturesymposium.org, where you can sign up to donate to or pick up a meal for the artists. The pieces, which will become part of Nashua’s townwide exhibit of sculptures, will be unveiled in their installation locations on Saturday, June 1.

The 32nd Annual Memorial Weekend Craft Festival at Mill Falls Marketplace (312 Daniel Webster Hwy., Meredith) will be held on Saturday, May 25, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, May 26, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Monday, May 27, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Explore a wide variety of crafts, including handmade jewelry, pottery, woodwork, textiles and more. Admission is free. Visit castleberryfairs.com.

The Concord Arts Market, an outdoor artisan and fine art market, will run one Saturday a month from June through October, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Rollins Park (33 Bow St., Concord). Market dates are June 8, July 13, Aug. 10 and Sept. 14. Visit concordartsmarket.net.

• View jaw-dropping sculptures crafted on Hampton Beach at the 24th Annual Hampton Beach Master Sand Sculpting Classic, happening Thursday, June 20, through Saturday, June 22, at Hampton Beach (180 Ocean Blvd.). The event includes award ceremonies and prizes for the greatest sand sculptures built with the theme “Sand Wars – May the Beach Be With You” in mind. The competition is by invitation only, but the sculptures will be illuminated for viewing at night until June 26. Visit hamptonbeach.org.

The 5th Annual Hampton Falls Liberty Weekend Craft Festival takes place on Saturday, June 29, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, June 30, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Hampton Falls Town Common (4 Lincoln Ave.) This event is free to the public. More than 75 juried artisans will feature their work. Discover pottery, pillow quilts, wind chimes and more. Visit castleberryfairs.com.

• Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St. in Manchester, currier.org) will hold its annual Block Party on Sunday, July 14, from 4 to 8 p.m. The evening will feature art activities, live music, free gallery admission, food trucks, face painting, a beer and wine tent, a community art project and more, according to the website.

Uncommon Art on the Common takes place on Saturday, Aug. 3, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Main Street in downtown Goffstown. Find participating artists and more at goffstownuncommonarts.org.

The 91st Annual Craftsmen’s Fair, an annual nine-day outdoor craft fair hosted by the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen, returns to Mount Sunapee Resort (1398 Route 103, Newbury) from Saturday, Aug. 3, through Sunday, Aug. 11. There will be hundreds of craftspeople with vendor booths, plus special craft exhibitions, demonstrations, hands-on workshops and more. Tickets should go on sale at some point in June. Call 224-3375 or visit nhcrafts.org.

The Greeley Park Art Show (100 Concord St., Nashua) returns on Saturday, Aug. 17, and Sunday, Aug. 18, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., both days. The annual outdoor juried art show hosted by Nashua Area Artists Association features a variety of artwork for sale. Visit nashuaarts.org/greeleyparkartshow.

Andres Institute of Art (106 Route 13 in Brookline) has a network of trails that are decorated with various sculptures and other artwork, and hosts various events, all summer long.

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ART EXHIBITS

• “The Potential of Women in Outer Space: Polly Apfelbaum & Alice Mackler at Outer Space gallery (35 Pleasant St. in Concord) will run until Saturday, July 1, by appointment, and another exhibit will be coming this summer displaying the work of Erin M. Riley & Lou Breininger.Visit outerspacearts.xyz.

• “Unfixed Concrete Ideal” is on display at 3S Artspace (319 Vaughan St. in Portsmouth, 3sarts.org) through Sunday, June 2. The gallery is open Wednesday through Saturday 11 a.m. through 6 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m.

• “I Live a Journey of a Thousand Years,featuring about 20 works by Raphaël Barontini, will be on display through Sunday, June 23, at the Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St. in Manchester, currier.org).

• “Filippo De Pisis and Robert Mapplethorpe: A Distant Conversation” will be on display at the Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St. in Manchester; currier.org) until Monday, Sept. 2.

New works by Rosemary Conroy are on exhibit atSullivan Framing and Fine Art Gallery (15 N. Amherst Road in Bedford) until the end of June. Visit sullivanframing.com.

• “Metalsum” will be on display at the McLane Center (84 Silk Farm Road in Concord; nhaudubon.org) through Friday, July 12. The show features rustic metal artwork with an emphasis on portraying the natural world by Jane Kolias, a New Hampshire native now residing in Vermont, according to the event website. Visit the exhibition Tuesdays through Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

• “Stories of the Sea” includes Van Gogh’s first outdoor painting and two by Andrew Wyeth and will be on display at the Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St. in Manchester; currier.org) until Friday, Oct. 18.

• “Cymodocea, an exhibit from New York-based artist Elisabeth Kley, will be on display at the Currier Museum of Art (150 Ash St. in Manchester; currier.org) until Sunday, Aug. 25.

• “Resurgence: Art of the Botanical” will be on display at Mosaic Art Collective (mosaicartcollective.com; 66 Hanover St. in Manchester) until Tuesday, May 28.

• “Luxe” will be on display at Mosaic Art Collective (66 Hanover St., Manchester, mosaicartcollective.com) from Monday, June 3, until Sunday, June 30.

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NATURE

• Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) presents an indoor educational program for adults, “Native Salve for Stings and Rashes, on Saturday, June 1, at 7 p.m. Learn about plantain, a common weed of lawns and fields that has healing properties for bee stings and skin rashes. $10 for members, $25 for non-members.

• Celebrate National Trails Day with Beaver Brook (117 Ridge Road, Hollis, beaverbrook.org) on Saturday, June 1, from 9 a.m. to noon. Participants will help with the annual tradition of trail work, with a focus on cutting back branches that are encroaching on the Jeff Smith trail, according to the website. Organizers ask that you bring work gloves, a water bottle and bug spray, and dress for the weather. Participants can park on Iron Works Lane by the Hollis-Jeff Smith Trailhead, according to the website. Beaver Brook will provide all necessary tools and snacks and will have extra work gloves just in case.

• Go for a guided walk at Pickering Ponds (Pickering Road, Rochester) with the NH Audubon on Sunday, June 2, at 7 a.m. to observe nesting birds and their breeding evidence along the trails. Space is limited and registration is required. Visit seacoastchapter.org/field-trips.

• Saturday, June 1, is New Hampshire Fish and Game’s Free Fishing Day, when state residents and nonresidents are allowed to fish any inland water or saltwater in New Hampshire without a fishing license. Visit wildlife.state.nh.us.

• Join NH Audubon on Saturday, June 1, at 9 a.m. along with Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire (222 Park St. in Portsmouth, nhaudubon.org) for a special guided tour of Portsmouth in honor of Black Birders Week. Participants can learn about the African-American history of New Hampshire while keeping an eye out for birds and other local wildlife, according to the website. They ask that you arrive 15 minutes prior to the start of the trail tour and note that free parking is available at the Parrott Avenue Parking Lot and along streets nearby. All ages are welcome but space is limited and registration is required, according to the website.

• Discover how not all owls hoot! and find out what other sounds owls make, at Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org), where participants will see a taxidermied owl, sing and dance to owl sounds and music, and play an owl and mouse game in their “Summer Polliwogs: Whooo’s Who (American Owls)” workshopon Wednesday, June 5, at 10 a.m. for ages pre-K accompanied by an adult. Tickets for a pair are $15.

• Southeast Land Trust (SELT) is hosting Riveting Raptors with Tailwinds at The Nan and George Mathey Center for People and Nature at Burley Farms (247 N. River Road, Epping) on Wednesday, June 5, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. to learn about owl, hawk and vulture habitat, conservation needs, and how to co-exist with these impressive neighbors. Visit seltnh.org to register.

• NH Audubon and Steve Mirick, an avid birder and expert butterfly enthusiast who has guided birding and butterfly communities, will lead an exploration of varied butterfly habitats in the Capital Area on Tuesday, June 11, at 11 a.m. A similar program on Tuesday, June 18, at 11 a.m. will be led by Mike Thomas, a retired entomologist and extraordinary butterfly enthusiast. Both will be at the McLane Center (84 Silk Farm Road, Concord, nhaudubon.org). Participants will learn how to identify butterflies in various habitats. All skill levels are welcome. Space is limited and registration is required.

Explore the world of bird habitat with the NH Audubon Seacoast Chapter and Matt Tarr of UNH Cooperative Extension on Wednesday, June 12, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and Friday, June 14, from 7:30 to 10 a.m. at Pickering Ponds trails in Rochester. Visit seacoastchapter.org.

• A native plant sale and spring craft fair will be held at the NH Audubon’s McLane Center (84 Silk Farm Road, Concord, nhaudubon.org) on Sunday, June 2, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) will host a workshop on “Poisonous Plants and Natural Hazards” on Saturday, June 8, at 10 a.m. Discover the healing properties of plantain, a common weed found in lawns and fields. Free for members and $25 for nonmembers to register. Visit prescottfarm.org.

• Squam Lakes Natural Science Center (534 Route 3, Holderness, nhnature.org) has its annual Breeding Bird Census on Wednesday, June 5. The public is invited to listen for and document the territorial songs of male birds, which indicate probable nesting. The early session, from 5:30 to 8 a.m., will cover two forested zones including Mt. Fayal, while the later session, from 8 to 9:30 a.m., will cover fields, exhibit areas and Kirkwood Gardens. Registration is required, according to the website.

• Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) will host a workshop called “Inside the Beehive” on Saturday, June 15, at 1 p.m. The workshop is open to youth and adults, will involve a local raw honey tasting, and is free for members and is $15 for nonmembers.

• Join the Seacoast Science Center (570 Ocean Blvd., Rye) for World Ocean Day, Sunday, June 2, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will feature hands-on games, educational activities, naturalist-led tide pooling sessions, food trucks, a beach clean-up and a life-size inflatable whale. Visit seacoastsciencecenter.org.

• Squam Lakes Natural Science Center will be hosting its StoryWalk Kickoff Reception at the Curry Place (846 Route 3 in Holderness) on Friday, June 28, at 10 a.m. Attendees can stroll along the Squam channel as they read a fun nature-inspired story posted one page at a time along the trail. Children can participate in a craft and enjoy a snack connected to the story, according to the website. Free and no registration required. Visit nhnature.org.

• Southeast Land Trust (SELT) is hosting a Summer Solstice Yoga Hike where participants will join avid hiker and 500-Hour Registered Yoga Instructor Venera Gattonini for a hike throughStonehouse Forest up to the cliff looking over Stonehouse Pond on Friday, June 21, at 6 p.m. The program is for ages 14 and up who have some hiking or yoga experience. Visit seltnh.org to register.

• Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) will host an all-ages workshop, “Tractor Tour: Life in the Fields, on Saturday, July 6, at 10 a.m., where participants can watch for hawks and songbirds soaring overhead and learn how animals such as deer, bears, songbirds and turkeys depend on open fields for food and shelter, according to the website. Free for members and $15 for nonmembers.

• Pumpkin Blossom Farm (393 Pumpkin Hill Road, Warner) hosts Lavender U-Pick in its lavender fields on various dates between Friday, July 5, and Sunday, July 25, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Everyone is invited to wander the fields and cut and harvest bundles of lavender. Attendees are welcome to relax and have a picnic on the lawn, walk the shaded trail and visit the baby chicks. Lavender plants, products and treats will also be for sale. Visit pumpkinblossomfarm.com.

• Join the Seacoast Science Center for the 4th annual Piscataqua Riverfest at Strawbery Banke Museum (14 Hancock St., Portsmouth) on Saturday, July 20. The event will feature sailing trips and tours, local food, a beer garden, live music entertainment and more. Visit seacoastsciencecenter.org.

• Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) will hold four different Summer Polliwog programs for kids on different Wednesdays in July at 10 a.m. The first is called “Mud”tastic and involves a mud run on July 10 and is $12 for an adult and child pair; the next is Glorious Bugs, where participants will make homes for bugs, and is on July 17; the third is Water Up! Water Down! Water all Around! where participants will learn about the water cycle on July 24; and the last one, on July 31, is called Acorn Was a Little Wild, which involves a puppet named Stasher and a hunt for deciduous trees. These last three are $15 for an adult and child pair.

• The Seacoast Chapter of the NH Audubon will be hosting Birds & Butterflies of Pondicherry Wildlife Refuge on Saturday, July 20, at 8 a.m. Join Steve Mirick and explore the birds and butterflies of the refuge and adjacent areas, weather permitting, during a long but level walk. Participants will meet at the trailhead for the Cherry Pond Trail at 289 Airport Road in Whitefield. Registration is limited to 20 participants, according to the website. Visit seacoastchapter.org.

• Head to Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia, prescottfarm.org) for Fireflies Light Up the Sky on Saturday, July 27, from 7 to 8 p.m. to learn about fireflies and experience them in action. This even is for ages 12 and older. The cost is $15 for nonmembers.

The Second Annual Capital Area New Hampshire Butterfly Survey will take place on Saturday, July 27, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the NH Audubon’s McLane Center (84 Silk Farm Road, Concord) and will help gather long-term butterfly data to support statewide butterfly conservation efforts. Visit nhaudubon.org.

• Go for a beginner wild mushroom walk at Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center (928 White Oaks Road, Laconia) on Saturday, Aug. 24, from 10 a.m. to noon. Led by experts from the New Hampshire Mushroom Co., this guided walk will take you along the farm’s scenic trails to search for, collect, identify and become familiar with the distinguishing features of different mushrooms. This event is for foragers 16 and older. $20 for members and $35 for nonmembers. Visit prescottfarm.org.

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SPORTS

• The six-time champion Nashua Silver Knights, members of the Futures Collegiate Baseball League, will host their home opener at Holman Stadium (67 Amherst St., Nashua) on Friday, May 24, against the Vermont Lake Monsters, with first pitch scheduled for 6 p.m. Their last home game will be on Friday, Aug. 2, at 6 p.m., when they will take on the New Britain Bees, before the playoffs begin later that week. Visit nashuasilverknights.com.

The New Hampshire Fisher Cats, the Double-A minor-league affiliate of the Toronto Blue Jays of Major League Baseball, is in the middle of a home stand at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium (1 Line Drive, Manchester) that lasts until Sunday, May 26. Fireworks follow the game on Friday, May 24, at 6:35 p.m. courtesy of Atlas Fireworks. On Saturday, May 25, the Fisher Cats’ annual Cats-Con game will celebrate favorite movies, comic books, heroes, villains and much more, featuring characters from Double Midnight Comics. Other events this season include a Blue Heeler Appreciation Brunch on Sunday, May 26, before the 1:35 p.m. game against the Somerset Patriots; a Father’s Day celebration to honor Fisher Cats dad fans on Sunday, June 16, when the first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a limited-edition Fisher Cats bucket hat; fireworks from Thursday, July 4, through Saturday, July 7, after games against the Portland Sea Dogs; Star Wars Night on Saturday, July 13; Sitcom Night on Thursday, Aug. 8; a celebration of the ’90s on Saturday, Aug. 10, when Beanie Babies get in free and the first 1,000 fans through the gates get a clear fanny pack; a celebration of New Hampshire hockey on Saturday, Aug. 24, where the first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a Monarchs-vs.-Fisher Cats bobblehead; a Piggy Tea Party Brunch before the 1:35 p.m. game on Sunday, Aug. 25, and more. The final home game is slated for Sunday, Sept. 8, against the Portland Sea Dogs. Visit nhfishercats.com.

• The Major League Soccer team the New England Revolution II will play their home games at Mark A. Ouellette Stadium (Victory Lane in Hooksett) on Sunday, May 26, at 3 p.m.; Friday, June 14, and Sunday, June 23, at 6 p.m.; Saturday, July 6, at 7 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 8, at 4 p.m.; and Sunday, Oct. 6, at 1 p.m. Tickets start at $12. Visit revolutionsoccer.net/revolutionii.

The Hoodkroft Open at Hoodkroft Country Club (121 E. Broadway, Derry) will feature the men’s super senior division on Thursday, May 30; the men’s senior division and the women’s division (all ages) on Friday, May 31, and the men’s division (all ages) on Saturday, June 1, and Sunday, June 2. The costs are TBD but have ranged from $50 to $100 in past tournaments, depending on the chosen division, and golf carts are sold separately. Visit hoodkroftcc.com.

• Join Special Olympics New Hampshire for its 2024 State Summer Games, the organization’s largest competition of the year for its athletes, on Friday, May 31, and Saturday, June 1, at the University of New Hampshire (105 Main St., Durham). The games include competition in athletics, bocce, equestrian, powerlifting, unified sprint triathlons and swimming. Visit sonh.org.

• RelAxe Throwing (157 Gay St., Manchester) will be home to the 4th annual Granite State Axe Tournament on Saturday, June 1, and Sunday, June 2, with matches beginning at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Saturday (big ax and dual knives) and at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Sunday (hatchets and duals). See relaxethrowing.com.

• AG Paintball (158 Deering Center Road, Weare) on Saturday, June 1, and Sunday, June 2, will host the New Hampshire Paintball Classic, featuring the 10-vs.-10-style match, which includes capture the flag, with first-, second- and third-place cash prizes. Visit agpaintball.com.

The 80th annual New Hampshire Soap Box Derby race will be held on Sunday, June 2, at 120 Broadway in Dover — check-ins begin at 7:45 a.m., with side-by-side competitions kicking off at 10 a.m. The Derby creates an opportunity for kids ages 7 and older to create a gravity-powered car and race it down a track in hopes of making the All-American Soap Box Derby World Championship, hosted in Akron, Ohio. Cheering on the racers is free, and parking is available at 73 Oak St. in Dover. Visit nh.soapboxderby.org.

• The final match of the Division 1 through 4 NHIAA Baseball Tournament will take place on Saturday, June 8, at a time TBD at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium (1 Line Drive, Manchester; time TBA). Visit nhiaa.org.

• Join the Milford Rotary Club to play 100 Holes of Golf in One Day on Friday, June 14, at Amherst Country Club (72 Ponemah Road, Amherst), with tee-off at 6 a.m. Play is expected to be completed by 7:30 p.m., and scoring will be based on 90 holes played continuously. Prizes will be awarded for closest to the pin and hole-in-one, if made. See golf100holes.com.

• Don’t miss the 100th annual Loudon Classic Middleweight Grand Prix, a 1.6-mile road race happening at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (1122 Route 106, Loudon) on Saturday, June 17, as part of Laconia Motorcycle Week. General admission is $40 and VIP admission is $70. Visit nhms.com.

• The Franklin Animal Shelter’s Fifth Annual Charity Golf Tournament happens Monday, June 17, at Beaver Meadow Golf Course (1 Beaver Meadow Drive, Concord), with $125 registration per player beginning at 7 a.m., followed by a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to the first- and second-place winning teams, and several contests are planned. All proceeds will benefit Franklin Animal Shelter. Visit franklinanimalshelter.com/golf.

• Registration is open for this year’s New Hampshire Senior Games. The first local event, a candlepin bowling tournament, is happening at Boutwell’s Bowling Center (152 N. State St., Concord) on Friday, June 21, at 1 p.m. More events are scheduled to take place in July and August, covering disc golf, archery, basketball, swimming, racquetball, table tennis, badminton, pickleball and more. See nhseniorgames.org.

• Dozens of high school football players from across the state will participate in the 12th annual CHaD NH East-West High School All-Star Football Game, scheduled for Friday, June 28, at 6 p.m. at Grappone Stadium at Saint Anselm College (100 St. Anselm Drive, Manchester). General admission tickets are $15, with all proceeds benefiting Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock (CHaD). Visit chadkids.org.

NH Roller Derby (nhrollerderby.com) has double-headers scheduled for Saturday, June 8; Saturday, June 29, and Saturday, July 27, at JFK Coliseum in Manchester.

Granite State Roller Derby (granitestaterollerderby.org) has home bouts scheduled for Saturday, June 29, and Saturday, July 20, both at 6:30 p.m. and held at the Everett Arena (15 Loudon Road in Concord).

4th Annual Putts for Pups, a golf tournament fundraiser for Second Chance Ranch Rescue in New Boston, returns to Stonebridge Country Club (161 Gorham Pond Road, Goffstown) on Monday, June 24. Beginning at 8:30 a.m., the day will include 18 holes of golf, lunch, drinks, raffles, silent auctions, giveaways and more. Registration is $135 per person, or $475 per foursome. Visit secondchanceranchrescue.com/events/golf.

• It’s NASCAR Weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (1122 Route 106, Loudon) from Saturday, June 22, through Sunday, June 23. This includes the SciAps 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series race & Mohegan Sun 100 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour race on Saturday and the NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday. Tickets vary in price, depending on the race. See nhms.com.

Monte Scheinblum’s Boston Clinic is hosted at World Cup Golf Center (4 Friel Golf Road, Hudson), where the professional golfer works with players of all skill types over the course of a few days. There will be group and individual sessions from Saturday, July 13, through Monday, July 15, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Search “Boston Golf Clinic with Monte Scheinblum” on eventbrite.com.

• The Milford Community Athletic Association’s Fourth Annual Golf Tournament is happening on Monday, July 15, at Amherst Country Club (72 Ponemah Road, Amherst), with a shotgun start at 8 a.m. The tournament will be followed by lunch and an awards ceremony and will feature several contests. Registration is $600 per foursome. Visit mcaa.us.

• New Hampshire Muscle Cars club will be hosting its Midsummer Sizzler on Sunday, July 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Star Speedway (176 Exeter Road in Epping). It will include burnout competitions as well as slalom competitions. Visit nhmusclecars.com.

The 20th annual Fore Paws Golf Tournament, a fundraiser for the Salem Animal Rescue League, is tentatively scheduled for Monday, Aug. 12. Visit sarlnh.org.

The 121st Annual State Amateur Championship put on by the New Hampshire Golf Association starts Monday, July 8, and runs until Saturday, July 13, at Concord Country Club (22 Country Club Lane in Concord). Visit nhgolfassociation.org.

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Featured photo: Featured car is a ‘69 Camaro. Photo courtesy of AK Rods and Customs.

Art on wheels

Fans of muscle cars, British cars and rat rods prepare for another season on the road

By Zachary Lewis
zlewis@hippopress.com

Although metal, iron, copper, gasoline, asphalt, rubber, leather, fire and smoke are common elements in the world of muscle and sports car, American or import, the real fuel for these mechanized combustion wonders is the living, breathing community that supports and maintains these movable pieces of art, which will be on grand display at the Granite State Season Opener put on by New Hampshire Muscle Cars on Saturday, May 18, at the Deerfield fairgrounds.

This is a car club that unites thousands car enthusiasts alongside the other car clubs in the state such as British Cars of New Hampshire. Horsepower Farm and AK Rods and Customs are just a sample of the great crews and shops that craft and maintain the metal beasts. So this is a small selection of the large car world inside New Hampshire.

New Hampshire Muscle Cars club

The New Hampshire Muscle Cars car club was formed in December 2018 by muscle car enthusiast Phil Manro, and this is the club’s sixth show season. The club holds member events in the winter and summer. Exclusive to the summer and fall months are three car shows that are open to the public and for anyone to bring in their cars. These are the Season Opener on Saturday, May 18, the Midsummer Sizzler in July, and the Season Closer in October.

There are more than 11,000 members, making it the largest car club in New England.

New Hampshire Muscle Cars is a nonprofit organization. Money that is made goes back into the club to put on shows, to the infrastructure for the shows and club (a 24-foot club trailer, a couple of golf carts, scooters, lots of tents, a sound system, etc.) or to charities. Each event typically has a specific charity fundraising element. Working Dog Foundation, a group that trains police dogs, is the charity for the Season Opener and will be holding a demonstration of a police puppy taking down a perp.

“What we have tried to build and done so successfully is a nice community of car enthusiasts where we’re bringing together the vendors that support us with our member community,” Manro said. They have a core crew of around 30 volunteers who help put on these events, he said.

Muscle car ownership is not a prerequisite but if that prospect sounds like a nice future, this is the club to join. Shop owners around the state who work on such vehicles are in support and enjoy the connections made through membership. Keith Lefebvre, owner of AK Rods and Customs and a sponsor, said that the club “brings a great community together to learn from, to talk to, it gives you more of a diverse type of environment … one of the bigger things that makes a difference between what Phil does with the New Hampshire Muscle Car club and other events.”

Member-only events, although each is different, are held at sponsors’ sites. In April the event was at Horsepower Farm. It was a sort of open house where there was a shop tour and dyno tuning, which tests the horsepower of a car. (“Very loud,” Manro said.) Other locales have included places such as restoration shops.

Their biggest car show is typically the Season Opener. Their biggest year had around 1,113 show cars drive up and around 2,500 people. “We try to make it very affordable,” Manro said.

There’s a big grass field for parking and the first three gates are for the cars, while the fourth is where the humans enter.

The main fields, along with the gates, are devoted to cars with the fourth allotted for foot traffic and more than 40 vendors lining all the way up to the middle of the fairgrounds, where the food court will be along with, this year, live music blasted out by Southern Breeze.

Past this, there are two barns with car museum experiences: the indoor concourse showcase exhibit “Patina & Rat Rods” or their Barn of Rust, and the Race Car Barn. Behind the building is where the Working Dog Foundation will hold a demonstration.

Rat rods are typically older vehicles that are hodgepodged into functionality.

“In the movie Cars, Mater the tow truck there was all rusty and had a lot of different parts put on him. That’s kind of what a rat rod looks like,” Manro said. Now add a souped up engine that’s super loud. “They might look like something out of the junkyard but when you look real close you’ll see there’s actually a lot of craftsmanship that goes into making them. … They’re very eclectic.”

This year there will be 16 vehicles in competition in Barn 1 in battle for the Concourse Cup and the trophy that accompanies it.

Horsepower Farm owner Rick Soreno will have a rat rod competing in Barn 1. The 1930 Ford “was a parade car I bought in Belmont, New Hampshire,” Soreno said. “I took the body off it and sold everything else. Then we constructed a custom tube chassis for it. I had a Chrysler 300 SRT8 vehicle that got into an accident so I took all of the drivetrain out of that and put that into the chassis we built. We put it on ‘air ride’ [a type of suspension] and some big wheels and tires. It’s got the Gen III Hemi motor in it. A lot of custom fabrication work to it,” Soreno said.

A hemi is a car engine with a hemispherical combustion chamber, which is essentially a cylinder and piston top molded into the shape of a dome and typically refers to the V8 engine first designed by Chrysler in the 1950s and modified over time.

There are 30 different show car trophies up for grabs as well.

In the Race Car Barn there will be a 1960s front-engine dragster; these are unique in having the engine placed in front of the driver instead of behind as they are now. There will be road course cars, drag race cars and some others for a total of 10 very fast vehicles.

The what and why of muscle cars

According to Manro, a muscle car is “traditionally considered a car from the early ’60s to the very early ’70s, maybe ’71, ’72, with American-made V8 engine rear-wheel drive.”

The Pontiac GTO is considered one of the first.

There are Trans Ams, Firebirds, GTOs, Camaros, Mustangs, Challengers. Manufacturers include General Motors (Chevy, Pontiac and Oldsmobile). Then there are Dodge, Chrysler and Ford. The nuance of company ownership and titles is vast but these big names are good for an overview of the subject.

Now, there are “modern muscle vehicles, so you have modern Camaros that are kind of created in the likeness of their predecessors from the ’60s and ’70s,” Manro said. “It looks like an older Camaro, it looks like an older Challenger, or it looks like an older Mustang.” Around a third of the attendees have these, he said. “It’s a field of both classic and modern muscle cars.”

Manro grew up within walking distance of a race track, Oswego Speedway, and would head there on Saturday nights with his neighbors.

“That was what really got me into a little bit of the racing side of things,” he said. His father had muscle cars and imports. “He had a Jaguar in the ’60s that he worked on and restored, and that kind of got me into it.”

Manro’s first car was a ’77 Camaro he acquired in the mid-’80s when he was in high school. “Back then it was just a used car,” he said. Working on that car, and its history, cemented his love for the machine. When he was older he built his first kit car, a Factory Five Racing Shelby Cobra. “I had a lot of fun building that car,” Manro said. “Built probably a handful over the years.”

The suggestion to start the club was from his wife, Virginia. “She said to me, ‘Why don’t you start a Facebook group?’” he recalled.

The original intent was to find a handful of like-minded enthusiasts to go to shows and talk shop, but this vehicle shows no signs of stopping with over 11,000 members.

Soreno, the owner of Horsepower Farm, has been with Manro since the inception.

“I think I was the 20th member of the club. I’ve been with Phil since Day 1. It’s a good collaboration between the club and what we do for the members’ vehicles,” Soreno said.

This community spirit will be on display on Saturday, May 18, at the Season Opener. “I think it’s the camaraderie and the family aspect,” Phil Manro said. “We get a lot of families … people walking around having a lot of fun. … [It’s] a nice, inexpensive way to spend your day.”

New Hampshire Muscle Cars
Info: nhmusclecars.com; Cost of entrance is collected at the gates the day of the show for show cars and spectators. No online sales.

Granite State Season Opener
When: Saturday, May 18, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; gates open for show cars at 8 a.m. Rain date May 19.
Where: Deerfield Fairgrounds
Admission: $15 per show car, includes driver. $5 per passenger or spectator. Free for kids 12 and under.

The Midsummer Sizzler
When: Sunday, July 21, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Star Speedway
Where: 176 Exeter Road, Epping
Admission: $15 per show car, includes driver. $5 per passenger or spectator. Free for kids 12 and under.
This event will contain a burnout and a slalom competition between traffic cones.

Granite State Season Closer
When: Saturday, Oct. 12, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Hopkinton Fairgrounds, 392 Kearsarge Ave., Contoocook
Admission: $15 per show car, includes driver. $5 per passenger or spectator. Free for kids 12 and under.
Free apple cider and doughnuts; trunk-or-treat

The New Hampshire Muscle Cars car club will also take part in the 23rd Annual Cruising Downtown display of vintage cars, trucks, and motorcycles Saturday, Aug. 31, in Manchester; cruisingdowntownmanchester.com.

Horsepower Farm

The sounds of revved engines replace the rooster call at Horsepower Farm. When the sun is up, they do a lot of dyno tuning, car building, restomods (restoration and modification of vehicles) and LS swaps (an LS is a series of engines manufactured by General Motors).

“We do exhaust systems, suspension systems, braking systems, wheels, tires, just about everything but paint right now,” said Rick Soreno, the owner of Horsepower Farms.

sleek black car, low to the ground, on tarmac beside pop up tent with branded merchandise
Photo courtesy of Horsepower Farm.

Dyno tuning involves a dynamometer and is a helpful tool in measuring the performance of any given car. At Horsepower Farm it is a big machine inside a drum built into the floor, where “we strap the car down to the ground and then we can run the car stationary — it’s kind of like a treadmill for a car,” Soreno said. Unlike what happened to Cameron in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, miles are not being ‘reversed’ off his dad’s shiny red 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder and the vehicle will not ultimately go crashing out of a glass garage.

Sensors are placed inside the tailpipe and as the vehicle is run, and Soreno is able to garner from the readings how to maximize output and see how different modifications performed on a car have enhanced its power. It’s a way to “get the most horsepower out of a vehicle without racing up and down the street,” he said.

This knowledge and subsequent modification and tuning can be applied to most vehicles.

“Any car could benefit from a tune. They all come from the factory a little bit de-tuned. You can always add a little bit of timing, get a little more snap out of it, get a little more response,” Soreno said.

The LS engine family, which started in 1997 with the release of the Chevrolet Corvette (C5), the fifth generation of Corvettes, is popular because of the price for the small-block engine that holds anywhere from 300 to 400 from the factory but can reach well over a thousand with modifications.

“Parts are easy to find,” Soreno said. “They tend to go in cars easy, a good swap for old muscle cars. … Any GM car that has a V8 in it is probably an LS motor that can be put into a muscle car. … If you boost them, and when I say boost them, put a supercharger or a turbo on it, they’ll pretty much double the output power. … Everybody wants more power,” Soreno said. These engines are a newer generation of the hemi engines created in the 1950s.

Apart from using the tools to create the equivalent of the Christopher Nolan-era batmobiles, Soreno and his shop delve in the metal arts. Depending on what he is working on, he uses scrap metal, pistons, rods, and pretty much any type of metal he can get his hands on.

One such project involves beautifying a restaurant at the Riverwalk Resort at Loon Mountain.

“A focal-point artisan metal tree in the middle of the restaurant, it’s pretty cool, and we’re building them a big sign for the wall,” he said.

Soreno and his crew are proficient.

“I’ve got four guys working for me. We crank out some work. We get a lot of our work from the New Hampshire Muscle Car club,” he said. Soreno had some advice for those interested in securing a muscle car for themselves.

“Call around and visit some good shops and see what they’re doing and see what they have parked out front. Talk to the business owners. They can steer you in the right direction. I do that with a lot of my clients before they buy a vehicle. I tell them to come get me and let me go with them. Especially if you don’t know what you’re doing yet, ’cause you can buy a headache,” Soreno said.

And Soreno knows what he is talking about as a lifelong innovator of all things connectable.

“I would not read the directions and I would just take all the parts and I would make stuff. Erector sets, Legos, various other things, and stick them together with the motors that I’d get for the electronic cars, just play with things … just gravitated toward it.” He bought his first car at 14 and worked on it until he could legally drive it out of his driveway. His number of cars has since increased. “Yeah, they’re fun, I’ve got a few of them.”

Soreno feels right at home in this world: “It’s a great big family actually, everybody is pretty nice in the club, we’re all here to help each other….”

Horsepower Farm
22 Shaker Brook park in Loudon
horsepowerfarmllc.com
572-4267

AK Rods and Customs

“We do classic American street rods, muscle cars, restorations and custom builds for customers throughout New England,” said Keith Lefebvre, owner of AK Rods and Customs, who was inspired to the trade by his father, who always included him in the action.

They have been a part of the New Hampshire Muscle Cars club since the beginning. Keith had done business with Phil and was one of the first sponsors of the club and their events. “When he reached out to me about the idea of the club, it sounded great,” Lefebvre said.

Keith graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts but left before receiving a master’s in education from Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, Massachusetts, to move to Laramie, Wyoming. He enrolled in Wyoming Technical Institute, placed in the top 10 percent of his class, and now has a waiting list that stretches over a year long.

refurbished old car, painted red and black, with open engine, sitting in showroom
Photo courtesy of AK Rods and Customs.

His five full-time employees and his mother, who works part-time, like to cater to the antique and classic car world.

“We’re a family-run shop, so we take a lot of pride in our name, reputation, and the quality of work that leaves here,” he said. They even work on British imports like the MG, Jaguar, as well as German imports and others.

“Being a part of the club with Phil, kind of helping him create a club that’s in a similar fashion, where people look up to it and hold it to a high standard — I typically wouldn’t put ourselves out there to be part of something like that unless it was run by people that are of an upstanding stature for our community,” Lefebvre said.

“Phil and Virginia are good people to work with,” he said. Keith does not advertise except through events and word of mouth.

They’ll have a tent at the Club’s Season Opener where they’ll show off striping and custom colors and graphics. They will also be bringing in four vehicles: a 1956 Chevy Suburban; his father’s 1933 Plymouth Coupe, which his father’s started to work on when Keith was 4 and finished when he was 11; a 1978 Trans Am Firebird, and a 1932 Ford that has “a blown hemi in it, a pretty cool-looking vehicle but it’s not quite finished, but it will allow customers to see some of the fabrication work, some of our welding work, some of our wiring work, and some of the things in the raw before it gets covered up.” Customers who have had their vehicles worked on by AK Rods and Customs will make a showing as well.

Lefebvre’s shop is more focused on high-end models.

“I don’t mess much with drag cars or race cars. I started the business focused on the indoor show car crowd,” he said. “We definitely are like the guys that build the cars with the white gloves and they push the cars on and off the carpet to some of these indoor arenas and things like that. Some of our vehicles are in that stature.” He also works for ‘daily drivers’ or those who are looking to restore a muscle car, but typically “all of our work typically leaves here finished, painted, pretty, and all ready for a concourse-style show.”

A customer can give Keith a shell of a vehicle and he and his crew can custom build a whole new car within that shell with new technology and parts.

“Hide all those modern amenities within the old facade of the original vehicle itself to kind of create a blend of new and old,” he said. It is like an individualized car factory with a keen eye to “coach-build our customers a custom whatever year, make, model vehicle, it is that they had envisioned. That’s really our corner of speciality in the market here in the New England area.” They will make the dream a reality.

Some jobs can take up to 18 months and possibly more. Keith and the crew from AK Rods spent sleepless nights to ready “Roxane,” a 1969 Dodge Charger with a 1,000-horsepower blown hemi priming the mechanical marvel. They built the fire walls, floors, frame rails, front and rear suspension and actually drove it to the Detroit Autorama in 2013. It won Best Pro Street Unlimited and Best Paint. “Which was a real big feather in the cap for some random New Hampshire boys to show up and do in the big arena,” Lefebvre said.

They even modified a ’69 Camaro for a customer in a wheelchair with an added hand-brake option to allow him the use of the brake system.

They only typically work on vehicles from 1984 or older, but will make exceptions for museum exhibitions or other special cases.

“Being a family-run shop, I’ve got some great guys that have worked for me for many years now. It’s nice to have a family-like community to work within and grow with,” he said.

All this hard work is worth it to Keith and the team at AK Rods and Customs to realize the vision of his customers and they’re overjoyed with the outcome. Some are impressed because customers will say, “that was my dad’s car and I never even got to see it on the road and we’re making grown, big burly construction men cry because we got their vehicles all done and they’re so happy that it finally looks the way they never thought they’d see it. It drives in such a way they never thought they’d be able to enjoy it. It’s a very appreciative line of work….”

AK Rods and Customs
1 Independence Drive in Londonderry
818-8264, akrodsncustoms.com

British Cars of New Hampshire

classic cars lined up on grass during car show, people looking at them, sunny day, trees behind
2022 Show of Dreams. Photo courtesy of British Cars of New Hampshire.

British Cars of New Hampshire operates with four councils throughout the state, holding monthly meetings in Manchester, Bristol, Portsmouth and Jaffrey.

The club was established in 1991 by six couples in the Manchester and Concord area led by the driving force of Mike Sweet. A similar club they had been part of in Massachusetts was too far south to attend regularly.

“It’s not just driving cool cars around, it’s giving back to the community, that’s our main focus,” said Sweet, who is also Prime Minister of British Cars of New Hampshire.

Their big charity fundraising car show is called Show of Dreams and will be held this year on Saturday, July 27, at the Alvirne Hills House in Hudson, with all proceeds to go to the New Hampshire Food Bank. Last year’s show earned over $20,000 for the Food Bank, amounting to around 40,000 meals that the organization was able to supply. This year’s Show of Dreams will be the club’s 27th with multiple trophies up for grabs.

Aston Martins are certainly allowed in the club, but James Bond cars are not necessary. Jaguar E types, Triumphs, MGs, Lotus, Morgan, pretty much any British ‘marque’ is included in the club. “These cars are the precursor to everything we drive today,” said Diana Stanley, who is a member along with her husband. They have a 1974 Triumph TR6, a 1980 Triumph TR8, a 1983 Jaguar XJ6 and a 2008 Jaguar XK. As with children, it is hard to pick a favorite.

“The problem is we love them all and we try to drive all of them,” she said. Their ’74 TR6 was purchased at a large British car show up in Stowe, Vermont, called The British Invasion that happens the third weekend in September and garners more than 700 cars from across the pond.

“They were the original sports cars. Most British cars were brought over after World War II, in particular the MG TD TC and TF, they were brought over by the soldiers….” These are the old-timey yet sleekly modern cars you see in a lot of BBC miniseries since their line was first produced in 1936. Soon they were being imported to the United States, and in Connecticut, where Diana Stanley and her husband are originally from, was a Triumph dealership.

Sweet first got interested in Matchbox cars and then James Bond.

“I fell in love with England and it was just a natural progression. My first car when I got my license was a 1972 MGB. That’s the way it worked out,” Sweet said. Along with the two-door sports car, Sweet has three Triumphs: a ’79 Spitfire, a ’76 TR 6 and a ’62 TR 3B. “It’s like therapy on wheels. If you’re having a bad day, all you’ve got to do is take the top down and take a drive,” he said. “There’s really nothing like being 4 inches off the ground and having the wind go through your hair and hearing a nicely tuned engine. It’s a lot of fun.”

Unfortunately, the driving season in New Hampshire is not the longest. The beginning of May is a typical starting point.

“As soon as the snow goes away and most of the salt is off the roads,” Stanley said, is when one is able to hop in the Jaguar for a ride. Depending on the weather outlook for snow the season can last until November. “The club is a very fun club,” she said. “We have a lot of activities.”

The drive on Saturday, May 18, starts at the Prime Minister’s residence in Weare; they will drive out to the western region of the state and return back, totalling about two hours.

Each of the four council groups will host rides to allow members to cruise around their region. Some drives feature different themes, such as waterfalls or covered bridges, but as long as the road is paved they’re good to go. A lunch or dinner is an aspect of the journey.

Although Aston Martins, MGs and Jaguars are high-performance cars, “they really wouldn’t be classified as muscle cars,” Stanley said.

“They’re fun roadsters but they’re not rocket ships,” Sweet said.

British cars definitely played a huge part in sports car crazes.

“The British held the market from the early ’50s right up until the late ’70s. … I’ve got old magazines here from 1952, 1953. People were just in love with these things. They’re racing them and it was just a way of life,” Sweet said.

British Cars of New Hampshire will have its Show of Dreams car show fundraiser at the Alvirne Hills House Field in Hudson, now the home of the Hudson Historical Society. New Hampshire Food Bank will provide volunteers to help park cars, sell raffle tickets and greet spectators.

The show’s “Piccadilly Square” area will hold vendors along with a food truck from the New Hampshire Food Bank and Lick’s Ice Cream from Litchfield, and there will be a DJ playing live music as well as emceeing the event. British car part suppliers in the state help with the show via donations, items for give-away, or items for the raffle at the event or at the silent auction. Car admission is $30, two cars makes that total $40, but if registration is day-of, registration is $40 for one vehicle.

Spectator entry is free and there is a Mini Cooper with an open moonroof with a sign that reads, “Throw the money in the Mini” as a suggested donation.

“We prefer to have families come and we want kids to see these cars, we even allow children to sit in our cars. It’s a fun day for everybody,” Stanley said. Participants will also be allowed to tour the historic home.

“We don’t really own them,” she said of the cars. “We steward them, because somewhere along the way it’s going to get sold to somebody else who is going to take care of it and then hopefully it’s preserved and people won’t forget where their cars that we drive now came from.”

British Cars of New Hampshire
27th Annual Show of Dreams
When: Saturday, July 27, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Alvirne Hill House Field, 211 Derry Road, Hudson
Info: bcnh.org

Working Dog Foundation

police officer with dog at event, kids petting dog
Photo courtesy of Working Dog Foundation.

A police academy for man’s best friend helps keep the career open for dogs by training them for police departments across New Hampshire and in Maine. Working Dog Foundation will be holding a demonstration at the New Hampshire Muscle Cars Season Opener at Deerfield Fairgrounds on May 18 and will be the charity that the event is fundraising for. More events can be found on their website.

Jeremy Wirths, chairman of the board of the Working Dog Foundation, said the organization was started by a small number of dog handlers in 1995 to assist police departments in and around the Granite State whose budgets were too small for a K9 program. It is also attached to the larger police dog training unit that is the New Hampshire Police K9 Academy.

At one point the Foundation supported close to 60 police departments. It is currently working with Milford, Alton, Bristol, Rochester, Barrington, Keene, and Wells, Maine.

“A dog’s nose is incredibly powerful,” Wirths said. “Working K9’s are … a less lethal option for the police officers to use for apprehension and as well as presence detection…. When they are on duty but not actively working in one of their disciplines they are comforting as well.”

“The work the dogs do is amazing. They’re keeping our communities safer. It’s just great to see the demonstration,” said Jamie Rich, Development and Outreach Manager of the Foundation.

A crowd favorite is the ‘controlled aggression’ part of the demonstration, where the police K9 takes down the fake perp in the bite suit. “It’s a pretty cool thing to see,” Wirths said. “Or using a small piece of clothing to be able to go track down and find somebody is always impressive to see as well.”

Wirths has played the decoy before. “Every time I get into it, it’s a bit of an adrenaline rush. I know that the dogs are highly skilled and good at what they do but it’s always still an adrenaline rush knowing that there’s an animal chasing after you to bite you. And as far as the actual bite itself, it’s a lot of pressure.”

Featured photo: Featured car is a ‘69 Camaro. Photo courtesy of AK Rods and Customs.

The hot list

In Hippo’s Best of 2024 readers’ poll, we asked readers to vote for the “Restaurant That Brings The Heat.” Looking to spice up your dining routine? Here are the top 11 winners in that category.

Destination India Restaurant and Bar

14 E. Broadway, Unit A, in Derry, destinationindianh.com, 552-3469

Destination India won “best of the best” in the heat category. Indian food has a reputation for being hotter than most New Englanders are used to. Destination India, for instance, has three levels of spiciness on the menu: “Mild,” “Medium” and “Indian.”

According to Destination India Chef and owner Navi Avhad, there is a nuance to spiciness that many don’t appreciate; it’s not so much a matter of being “hot” or “mild.” One of the critical factors in how good a spicy dish is, he said, has to do with the flavors the chiles bring along with the heat.

“We never use powdered chiles,” Avhad said. “We only use fresh, organic green chiles. It’s more expensive for us, but it means we can serve a higher-quality food.” He said that the most dependably high-quality chiles that he can get from his distributor are small “Thai” chiles, which he feels are healthier to eat than powdered red ones.

“Some people complain that hot food makes their stomachs hurt; that doesn’t happen with good-quality, fresh chiles,” he said.

Hottest dish: Vindaloo (chicken, lamb, goat or shrimp), $16. Vindaloos come from Goa, on India’s west coast. They are curries made with a vinegar-based sauce, which complements the green chiles with its sharpness. Chef Avhad said that regulars usually start with a “mild” level of heat. “It’s a spice level that lets customers appreciate the actual flavor. Later on they can build up the spiciness,” Avhad said.

Daw Kun Thai

93 S. Maple St., No. 4, in Manchester, dawkunthai.com, 232-0699

Desmond Holman, the co-owner of Daw Kun Thai, agrees that spiciness isn’t binary — either hot or mild.

“Thai food isn’t just hot,” he said. “It allows you to taste all other flavors as well.” With that said, there’s no denying that Thai cuisine can be extremely spicy. “Spicy food usually comes from tropical parts of the world,” he said, “and Thailand is tropical.”

chicken, beans, carrots and other veggies on plate with bowl of sauce, seen from above
Pad Ped Kai. Photo courtesy of Daw Kun Thai.

Holman said that getting customers used to Thai levels of spice was challenging initially. “People who grew up in New England like me are very cautious at first,” he said. “They don’t have a lot of experience with spices, but they’re learning.”

Hottest dish: Pad Ped Kai (spicy chicken stir-fry), $17.75

Holman said this dish — a stir-fry of curry paste (a version sometimes called “Thai Jungle Sauce”) with chicken, eggplant and bamboo shoots — is far and away the spiciest dish Daw Kun Thai makes; nothing else is even close.

“It’s two times as hot as anything else we have on our menu,” he said with enthusiasm. “It’s the only item that has two stars. And that’s its mild version. We have maybe five or six people who can order it ‘Thai Hot’ — that’s eight times as hot as the mild version. It’s so hot that I have to caution people who’ve never been in the restaurant before. It’s really too hot for some people, even at its mildest.”

Curry Leaf

6 Pleasant St. in Concord, 715-5746, curryleafus.com

Inder Saini, the Chef and owner of Curry Leaf, is pretty sure most of his customers come into his restaurant looking for a little heat.

Curries and karahis can be made with different levels of heat. Photo courtesy of Curry Leaf.

“I believe,” he said, “that it’s because of the spices. American food is good but a little bland. During cold weather, spicy food opens up your body.”

Hottest dish: Karahi (chicken, lamb or goat), $19.95

Karahi — which is named after the wok-like pan it is cooked in — is a South Asian curry that is an important part of North Indian, Afghan and Pakistani cuisine. According to Chef Saini, the chicken version is made with all dark meat, onions and peppers. “The customer can pick any meat,” he said, but the sauce is the same. Like dishes at many of the restaurants on this list, the heat comes from fresh green chiles.

A Lot of Thai

360 Daniel Webster Hwy., Unit 121, Merrimack, 429-8888, alotofthainh.com

According to the staff at A Lot of Thai, there are several spicy dishes on their menu — Drunken Noodles and Curry Chicken Basil, for instance — but their recommendation is for the spicy dipping sauce that comes with many of the dishes and allows each customer to adjust their level of heat.

Kashmir Indian Cuisine

396 S. Broadway in Salem, 898-3455, kashmirindianfood.com

Kashmir doesn’t fool around when it comes to spice. According to server/host Khem, even some of the Indian staff often order their food “medium.” Like many of the restaurants on this list, Kashmir depends on green Thai chiles for much of its heat.

Hottest dish: Vindaloo, $16.95 (chicken or lamb), $17.95 (shrimp)

Unlike most of the dishes at most of these restaurants, the vindaloo at Kashmir only comes in one level of heat: “hot.” It is cooked in a traditional style, with a paste made of dried red chiles, fresh herbs and vinegar.

Kathmandu Spice

379 S. Willow St. in Manchester, ktmspice.com, 782-3911

Kaji Maharjan, the manager of Kathmandu Spice, said that Nepalese food isn’t actually very spicy. “Well, it is,” he said, “but not Indian-spicy.” Kathmandu Spice clearly isn’t afraid of serving spicy food but Maharjan said there is a different framework of flavors behind the Indian food the restaurant makes and the Nepalese.

cooked leafy greens in hammered metal dish with side handles
Rayo Ko Saag. Photo courtesy of Kathmandu Spice.

“Indian cooking uses a lot of spices and chiles,” he said. “Nepalese food is much lighter. We don’t use nearly as much dairy or chilies.”

He gives the example of Saag, which is on both sides of the menu. “Our Indian Saag is made with spinach,” he said, “but we make our Nepalese Rayo Ko Saag with mustard greens.” It’s also made with mustard seeds and fried in mustard seed oil, each of which carries a different level of horseradish-like heat that is felt in the nose and sinuses as much as it is in the mouth. “We also put some chile seeds in it,” he said with a grin.

Hottest dish: Indian Curry (chicken or lamb), $17.95

Like every restaurant on this list, Kathmandu Spice will make any dish at any level of spice, but even its “Medium” level is on the hot side. Maharjan said one of the reasons the food at Kathmandu has such a vibrant flavor is how the staff processes the ingredients. “We grind all our spices here,” he said. “We don’t buy anything pre-ground.”

Hermanos Cocina Mexicana

11 Hills Ave. in Concord, 224-5669, hermanosmexican.com

short ball glass filled with cocktail and ice, lime wedge, salt rim, with a straw
A margarita with house-infused pineapple/habañero tequila. Photo courtesy of Hermanos Cocina Mexicana.

Every dish at Hermanos Cocina can be customized for different tastes, but according to General Manager Melissa Thompson one of the restaurant’s spiciest offerings is a surprising one.

Hottest dish: house infused pineapple/habañero tequila, $11

“We’re a scratch kitchen,” Thompson said, “so any of our dishes can be spicy, especially our enchiladas or our pastor de avocado, but our house infused tequilas are something special.” Hermanos infuses Lunazul blanco tequila with either jalapeños or pineapple and habañeros.

“It depends on what is available and seasonal,” Thompson said, adding that most customers have it in a margarita.

Puerto Vallarta Mexican Grill

865 Second St. in Manchester, 935-9182, vallartamexiannh.com

Puerto Vallarta is another restaurant that prides itself on its heat flexibility. Many of the dishes on its menu are fairly mild even by New England standards, but according to bartender and manager Christobal that is easily remedied.

“Customers come in all the time and ask us to make one of our regular dishes extra spicy,” he said.

Hottest item: Hot Tomatillo Salsa, $2.99

There are several dishes at Puerto Vallarta that are spicy to begin with — Camarones Endiablados (Shrimp Diablo), Aguachile, and Burritos Caliente (literally “hot burritos”) — but none of them packs the punch of its house-made tomatillo salsa. Unlike many tomatillo salsas, it isn’t green, but a red color. It is pureed, but not so finely that there aren’t tiny bits of chiles and vegetables. It is extremely hot, but with a lovely, fresh herbal flavor that puts in a quick appearance before the heat comes crashing down.

“A lot of our customers who want their food extra spicy get a side of this, and mix it into whatever they’ve ordered,” Christobal said, “so they can customize it just the way they like it.”

Smoke Shack Cafe

226 Rockingham Road in Londonderry, 404-2178, smokeshackcafe.com

sandwich filled with brisket and melted cheese, cut in half triangles, beside scoop of potato salad
Habañero Melt. Photo courtesy of Smoke Shack Cafe.

The key to the Smoke Shack’s spiciest food, said owner and manager Melissa Lafontaine, is in its sauces. “It’s the real deal,” she said. “We are a scratch kitchen, so we reduce habañeros [one of the spiciest chiles in the world], then run them through the mill and use it in our sauces. For instance, our cornflake fried chicken isn’t very spicy on its own, but our sauces are, like our Habañero Honey.” She said that even she has trouble with her restaurant’s hottest sauces. “Me personally?” she said, “I can’t handle it. I’m good with heat up to the jalapeňo level, but the habañero is too much for me. But people love it.”

Hottest dish: Habañero Melt, $11.99

The Smoke Shack’s menu describes this as “Smoked brisket on grilled Texas toast with mayo, habañero bbq sauce, sautéed peppers and onion, and smoked Gouda cheese.” “It’s our No. 1 selling sandwich,” Melissa Lafontaine said.

Bangkok Thai Food

44 Nashua Road in Londonderry, 426-5162, bangkokthaifood.biz

The staff at Bangkok Thai Food wants to make it very clear that not all Thai food is hot.

“We have many things on our menu that aren’t hot at all,” said spokesperson An, translating for her mother, the owner and chef. “Most Thai dishes are a mixture of hot, sweet, salty and sour.” With that said, many of the dishes at Bangkok are hot, and can be made even hotter at a customer’s request.

“We use green Thai chiles,” An said. “That’s the authentic Bangkok style.” Her favorite dish to have extra-spicy is Noodle Coconut Tom Yum, a creamy coconut soup with noodles, shrimp paste and scallions.

Hottest dish: Green Curry, $15

Described on Bangkok Thai’s menu as a “choice of meat, eggplants, bamboo shoot, bell peppers and basil leaves in green curry with coconut milk,” the Green Curry comes with 15 choices of meat, including crispy pork, shrimp, duck, seafood, and ground chicken, and comes in “medium,” “hot” or “very hot” levels of intensity. “Mild” is not an option.

Thai Food Connection

1069 Elm St. in Manchester, 935-7257, thaifoodconnection.com

Reige, a server and bartender at Thai Food Connection, said they have customers along the entire spectrum of heat-tolerance.

“I don’t feel like we have any spice seekers,” she said, “just everyday people who want something different, then they keep coming back.” She said that she has noticed a change in recent years of area diners’ attitudes toward foods and cuisines that might have been intimidating even a few years ago.

stir fried veggies with side of rice on rectangular plate
Krapow. Photo courtesy of Thai Food Connection.

“I think it has to do with changing demographics,” she said. “The Manchester area has become a real melting pot. As this part of the state becomes more of a suburb of Boston, there’s been an uptick of different cultures. I think that being a college town helps, too.”

Hottest dish: Kua Gling (an occasional off-menu special)

Reige says it’s hard to pick out one particular spiciest dish at her restaurant.

“Everything can be made spiciest,” she said. “Probably, the hottest everyday dish that we make is krapow.” Thai Food Connection’s menu describes this as “stir-fried choice of ground chicken or tofu (substitute beef +$2, shrimp +$3 , crispy chicken +$3) with garlic, fresh chili, onion, bell pepper and Thai basil seasoned with hot basil sauce (fried egg on top +$2).” The base cost of the dish is $13.99. But the run-away hottest dish that the restaurant serves is Kua Gling, a dry southern Thai dish made with ground chicken, aromatics like lemon grass and lots of chiles.

Comics for all!

It’s comics season!

Saturday, May 4, is a double celebration for comic book and pop culture fans — it’s May the Fourth (the annual celebration of the Star Wars universe) and Free Comic Book Day, the annual celebration of all things comics-related. We take a look at local plans for this day as well as next weekend’s Kids Con New England on Saturday, May 11, in Concord — a comic book convention for the younger comic book fans. We also talk to a few artists about their work and get advice on how to get started drawing your own comics.

Return of Free Comic Book Day

These are the comic books you’re looking for

By Zachary Lewis
zlewis@hippopress.com

On Saturday, May 4, comic book stores across the globe will celebrate Free Comic Book Day to honor Marvel, DC, Dynamite and all things pop culture related to the medium. The free comic books that eager participants can acquire include titles from X-Men, Hellboy, Jonny Quest, Pokemon, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Spiderman, Archie Comics, Popeye, Doctor Who, Flash Gordon, and Star Wars, just to name a few.

Locally, Double Midnight Comics, which has stores in Manchester and Concord, and Jetpack Comics and Games in Rochester will be hosting elaborate shindigs for fans, Merrymac in Merrimack will host some artists and shops like Collectibles Unlimited in Concord and Pop Culture in Raymond, among others, will have selections from the Gold- and Silver-tiered free comics available for the holiday as well as lots of sales. Depending on where you are and what level of party you want, New Hampshire has your Free Comic Book Day fix covered.

Double Midnight Comics

Double Midnight Comics is ready to use their Willow Street location in Manchester at the Factory for Free Comic Book Day.

“They gave us free rein of the whole campus so we’re just going to have fun with it,” said Chris Proulx, co-owner of Double Midnight Comics along with his brother, Scott, and best friend from high school, Brett Parker.

“We’ve all been big comic book guys. Scott and I got into comics in the ’80s. Marvel had a G.I. Joe and a Transformers comic book that tied into the cartoon, which was tied into the toys, so we got sucked into that and eventually made our way into the Marvel Universe. I met Brett in high school and he was like, ‘You’ve got to read the X-Men,’ and I was like, ‘OK,’ and then became obsessed with the X-Men.”

Naturally all three are excited for the annual celebration that started on May 4, 2002.

“Over the years [it’s] turned into a big party … have a lot of fun, geek out over the day. Up in our region the fans are pretty blessed to have some awesome stores that do it big…. We like to have fun with it.”

Weekly events that occur on Saturday will still go on, “but they’ll kinda be shrunk down for the day.”

So which comic books are free? Can I get that Superman Action Comics First Edition behind adamantium-infused glass for free?

“I’ll have people go, ‘I can get that $3,000 comic book for free?’ No, no, no, they [comic book publishers] make specific books for the day meant to be something new readers can get into. A full list of the comics can be found on freecomicbookday.com. We usually have extras that we throw in,” Proulx said. “We get people that travel from out of state for this.”

Comic book storylines are a lot like Legos. Sure, there is the preset factory-made form, which is a lot of fun, but the ability each new comic book has to morph characters into different versions of themselves, such as a Batman in Victorian-era London, offers endless possibilities and is the perfect treat for the imagination and allows readers to really make the stories their own, and is one of the reasons why so many people become enamored with the limitlessness of the medium.

Fans are so enamored that people start lining up the day before.

“It’s our busiest day of the year. One of the fun things that happened over the years is people started camping out for it…. It’s a cool little community event that happens there. The first person in line gets a special prize. The first 10 people in line get prizes. There are prizes for being in line. We’re pretty generous with it because we know if you’re going to spend a day waiting, you don’t want to be like, ‘Here’s an extra comic book,’ like, it’s pretty substantial,” he said.

On top of the possibility of winning cool swag just for standing in line, there are more activities than you can shake a magic-imbued stick at. These include lightsaber training on the lawn, and cars from movies that could take you back into the future or away from running T-rexes along with other signature vehicles throughout the complex. There will also be droid racing, live music from the Clemenzi Crusaders, face painting, representation from New England Kids Con, and a mobile video game truck called Gamer Sanctuary as well as a costume contest. Participants can even learn to shoot as poorly as a Stormtrooper.

Free Comic Book Day would not be complete, though, without a cinematic universe’s allotment of comic book artists.

“They will have tables, some of them will be sketching, some of them will have comic books for sale, some of them will have art prints for sale. It varies by artist. Some of them will have free things to give away,” Proulx said. Artists scheduled include Misty Martell, Ed Smith, Erica Fog, Craig Holland and others. A full list of artists and vendors — there are more than 40 — can be found on their website.

Getting to dress up like your favorite character is another aspect that is a huge plus for fans, even if they are not competing for the glory of best cosplay.

“We do encourage people to come in costume. Kids, if they want to dress up, if you want to dress up your dog, just come have fun. Families coming together in costume, it’s really neat,” he said. There will be prizes as well, although walking around as the Mandalorian all day is already a win.

Another win is that the non-stop comic book action occurs all day, from 10 a.m to 4 p.m.,and the labor involved is totally worth it for Double Midnight Comics.

“It’s our favorite day of the year. It’s a lot of work…. We love doing it, we love getting the community out together. Bringing another positive event to the city and we just love our new home here at the Factory because they get it and they let us have fun with the event,” he said.

Merrymac Games and Comics

Artists attending include Tabatha Jean D’Agata, Todd Dezago, Craig Rousseau, Jesse Lundberg, Mike Norton, Joseph Schmalke, Chrissie Zullo Uminga and Christopher Uminga.

“They’ll be here from 10 to 3 signing books, doing sketches,” Bob Shaw, manager of Merrymac Games, said. Apart from personal projects, some titles they have worked on include stories from Marvel, DC, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Star Wars, among others.

The store will be handing out comics and having a small sale, 20 percent off most things in the store besides Magic Products.

Jetpack Comics and Games

In Rochester, Jetpack Comics and Games will be blasting off with the celebration as well.

“We definitely do Free Comic Book day a little bit different than a lot of places. I know at one point we had the biggest one in the world because we spread it out all over town,”said Rich Brunelle, manager of the store. They, “try to make it bigger every year.”

“These days we end up having it all around town where we have a list online, a big map of all the businesses that are involved where you can take a trip to each one and get some additional free comics, which is a neat idea.” In comic book town, every establishment holds a possibility to find your next favorite comic, or even your first.

This will be the last year Jetpack Comics organizes the event for the whole town. The owner “wants to mix it up and try something different,” Brunelle said. They want to put more focus on bringing in artists and the other great aspects of FCBD, but they hope businesses around Rochester still decide to take part. With great power comes great responsibility.

Jetpack Comics. Photo by Stolen Soul Photography.

“It gives a good chance for all the local businesses to get some new eyes on them. It’s definitely an interesting way to do it because the town has definitely embraced it over the years. There are signs on the edge of town and every road leading to downtown warning folks a week ahead of time of Saturday, May 4, there’s going to be costumed heroes and villains in the streets. So everyone knows that that’s a big day in Rochester here. We usually bring in at least a few thousand people to downtown,” Brunelle said.

Their biggest year was when they had Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, the creators of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, signing together at the event. Although that record may get broken this year.

It all starts at 10 a.m. but there is a way to start sooner and bypass the inevitable line by opting for a VIP pass.

“In addition to getting you a big bag of stuff right off the bat, you also get to skip the lines. Those VIP customers get to come in an hour early,” Brunelle said. “It’s pretty cool for them because for a little bit extra cash you don’t have to wait in a big line, and our line is definitely pretty long on Free Comic Book Day, but we have it down to a science these days where even times when the line goes from the shop and wraps all the way around the block where it’s like hundreds of people we have a great system that moves them through the shop really fast and an awesome crew that knows what they’re doing so we get people through the line incredibly fast these days, it’s pretty awesome.”

A large amount of action goes down at the Governor’s Inn, where participants can interact with comic book artists and vendors, live music will be played, and the ever popular cosplay contest happens at 4 p.m.

“Over the years that’s become a huge thing for us,” Brunelle said.

First, second, and third place winners will be chosen from categories that range from 0-17 and 18 and older. “All the prizes are different denominations of Jetpack Comics gift cards and we have a judges choice and host choice as well,” he said.

The construct and build of the attire runs quite the gamut.

“We have everything from people that have spent thousands of dollars to get a movie-accurate costume to kids that have literally built theirs with stuff at home. We realized pretty early in this [that] it’s not quite fair … we try to break it up and have a whole bunch of categories so that everyone gets spotlighted, a bunch of prizes, and it’s so fun,” Brunelle said.

“We had an almost realistic Master Chief from Halo a couple of years ago. We had some great Thors, there’s always a bunch of awesome Harley Quinns, Deadpools that show up as well as characters from popular animes these days. There’s been some spectacular Demon Slayer cosplays the last couple years…. It’s always cool to see what people come up with because our folks down this way are quite creative. We get some interesting costumes every year,” he said.

Before the caped crusaders take the stage for the contest a band composed of Jetpack Comics interns called Spectre Moose will perform to welcome in the attendees and contestants. They’re also podcasters — the band members, that is.

“They do a show called the Geek Gossip Podcast and they are like superstars, they’re teenagers, they do everything,” Brunelle said. Another band will perform after the cosplay contest for the afterparty.

A common thread these comic book stores share is the sense of belonging and understanding. “We have a lot of people who come in that don’t have any people in their life that want to talk comics or movies or TV shows and so they come in here and they know they’ve got a community they can chat with. I probably read way too many comics but all my customers like recommendations and like to know what’s good and what they should be reading so I try to keep up on a ton of it,” Brunelle said.

An older cousin introduced him to comics, but it was a major event like FCBD that led Brunelle to that comic book life.

The Death of Superman was what got me into comic shops every single week. Back in the ’90s they tried to do all kinds of crazy events that would drag people in and that’s like one of the craziest ones of all time,” he said.

“We have like a mini-convention hall over there so we have a bunch of local guests as well as big-name guests that work on mainstream comics, and that ends up being a big focal point for everyone during the day … you get to meet some folks that are doing the comics you love,” he said.

“We have Paul Pellitier here this year. He’s well known for working with DC and Marvel … currently working on some of the new G.I. Joe stuff.” Others include Chris Campana, Gregory Bastianelli, Jeannine Acheson, Tom Sniegoski, Rich Woodall (who, “may be the hardest-working man in comics,” according to Brunelle), Vero Stewart, Jeremy Robinson, Mark Masztal and Jeff Kline. More information about these artists can be found on Jetpack’s website.

“This year is just the widest berth of different genres,” Brunelle said.

No matter which comic book party you attend, the organizers say, you’re going to have a good time.

“I honestly think this is the best year of Free Comic Book Day books in the history of the event…. People are pretty excited. It’s a great free day for the whole family and if you want to take a nice walk around town you can end up with a giant bag of free stuff, all kinds of comics to read,” Brunelle said.

Free Comic Book Day

Find a list of comics, some with previews of their FCBD book, additional locations, and more at freecomicbookday.com.

Collectibles Unlimited
25 South St. in Concord, collectiblesunlimited.biz, 228-3712
When: 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The store will have the free comics to hand out with no need to purchase anything, although the store will be open for regular business.

Diversity Gaming
1328 Hooksett Road in Hooksett, diversitygaming.store, 606-1176
When: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
They’re collaborating with the Hooksett public library by giving them free comics to hand out. The store itself will have a big mix of free comics, a storewide sale on 700 Funko! Pop figures for $5 and a Star Wars sale as well, according to Diversity Gaming.

Double Midnight Comics
252 Willow St. in Manchester; dmcomics.com, 669-9636(XMEN)
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
341 Loudon Road in Concord; dmcomics.com, 715-2683
When: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Jetpack Comics and Games
37 N. Main St. in Rochester; 330-9636(XMEN), jetpackcomics.com
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
VIP passes range from $15 to $54.99

Merrymac Games and Comics
550 D.W. Highway in Merrimack, merrymacgc.com, 420-8161
When: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Pop Culture
66 Route 27 in Raymond, popculturenh.com, 244-1850
When: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Free comics that are offered for Free Comic Book Day. There will be multiple sales on graphic novels, Pokemon cards, magic cards and more. All non-framed posters will be two for $25. All statues will be half-off, Board games will be 25 percent off, any comic books that are $10 or more will be 25 percent off and all cornhole sets (featuring the Hulk, Spiderman — “we have nerdy ones, all that stuff”) will be $50 off the listed price, according to Pop Culture.

For the younger fans

Kids Con brings in today’s readers, tomorrow’s creators

By John Fladd
jfladd@hippopress.com

Photo from Kids Con New England.

Emily Drouin is the creator, organizer, owner and promoter of Kids Con New England’s, which hosts a spring event in New Hampshire and a fall event in Maine.

This year’s Kids Con NE in Concord will feature a exhibitors, cosplayers, authors, artists and more.

“It’s a fun-filled one-day show,” Drouin said. “Parents know that this is a safe place and that all the material is family-appropriate.”

A dozen writers, illustrators and cartoonists will lead workshops like “Learn to Draw Robots,” “Sketch to Superhero Creation,” “Draw Anime Chibi-Style Characters,” “Superhero Mask-Making,” “Pokemon Crafts” and many others. Perhaps the biggest name among the guest authors and artists is William Patrick Murray, the creator of Marvel Comics’ The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl.

Other Kids Con activities include “Jedi Training with Calm Passion,” a magic show and a rock concert, which is followed in turn by “Superhero Training.” (Drouin said that Jedi Training is the runaway favorite among children.) There are also storytimes and sing-alongs and children’s improv classes. Drouin’s favorite part of the day — as well as most parents’ — is a cosplay contest.

Cosplay — when a fan dresses up as their favorite character — is one of the highlights of adult comic conventions. For kids, it is a dress-up dream come true. Given the scope of children’s imaginations, costumes can run the gamut from your standard Captain Americas and princesses in pink to indescribable alien life forms or whole families dressed to a theme.

“I am in awe of the costumes in the Cosplay Contest,” Drouin said.

For children who get too wound up, there are supervised areas outside where they can run around and scream.

“That’s really popular after Jedi Training,” Drouin said.

In addition to all this, there will be tables set aside for table-top games, a trailer to play video games in, and the vendors drawing caricatures, painting faces and selling toys, children’s books, comic books, posters and memorabilia, and more.

Kids Con NH 2024
Where: Everett Arena, 15 Loudon Road, Concord, 228-2784
When: Saturday, May 11, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Tickets: $15, $12 for seniors 65+ and military. Children under 5 get in free. Kids under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult guardian. Tickets can be purchased at the door or through Kids Con’s website.
More info: kidsconne.com

Telling a visual story

Ed Smith discusses his projects

Ed Smith is a comic book artist from Bedford who will be at Double Midnight Comics on Free Comic Book Day (Booth 27). He has worked on numerous titles including Tellos, Danger Team, a Giant Girl Adventure Series spin-off, and a project with his wife called Skies Over Gutenberg, among many, many others.

Is there a difference between working on commissioned work versus a personal project?

Ed Smith. Courtesy photo.

When you’re working on commission work usually it turns out that the client gives you free rein. You should always have your own individual set of standards so ideally doing commission work to someone else’s standard is only going to be slightly different than working on your own projects. There’s always that level of personal investment, you know — when you’re working on something near and dear to you it’s going to be a little bit different than if you’re working on something that’s near and dear to someone else. It really depends on the individual artist’s ethics. Mine personally, I find there really should not be a difference. I always do my best to involve myself in projects that I would want to be proud of in the future. I try to bring that same level of emotion to every project that I work on.

Do you have a specific color scheme you like to use?

Not particularly. Honestly it depends on the project. I try to use the colors that will work best for what the mood of the overall project is. You want to match colors that are in line with what it is that you’re working on. You don’t want to use drab and sad colors for something that’s supposed to be bright and cheery and make everybody smile. I do my best to kind of read the script or understand what the project is about and choose my colors accordingly.

How did you get into comics?

That’s a really good story. I grew up liking to draw. I grew up watching a lot of cartoons. I actually found my first comic book when I was a little guy. I found it when I was at school having breakfast one morning and ever since then I got more or less hooked because it was a Batman comic book. At the time I watched a lot of the Super Friends, so seeing Batman in a comic book just having adventures that were different than what I was seeing on the screen where he was surrounded by other superheroes, it just seemed a lot more adventurous to me. It was a lot more personal. I don’t know if I drew parallels from it or what have you, it was interesting to see Batman having his own individual adventures and it just inspired me and energized me to pick up my crayons and my pencils and whatever was around the house and just draw. My mom at the time kinda saw what I was doing and she would sit me down at the kitchen table and she would cut open paper grocery bags and we would use markers, industrial markers that my dad had brought home from work and she would show me how to draw things. The standard cube, turn the cube into a house, and then the house had the chimney with a curlicue of smoke, the three circles for Mickey Mouse’s ears, little flowers, things of that nature, she would teach me to draw them and I just kept going at it and over time it just developed into a little bit of skill. I just really kept at it. It was something that made me happy, drawing pictures, making everybody else smile while I’m drawing pictures. That’s really where it went.

Do you have any particular favorite screen adaptations of comic book stories?

Man, you know there are so many that I just can’t choose one…. Not because I’m trying to be wishy-washy and I realize that this article is going to go to print and different fandoms have different volatile reactions or supportive reactions to choices, but there are a lot of movies out there that you just wouldn’t believe were comic books and they are great cinematic movies. 300. 300 is a Frank Miller book that was based on old Greek legends and history. Road to Perdition with Tom Hanks, that was a really good graphic novel. There are just so many that people overlook as being true comic book movies that it’s hard to choose just one. I like what they’ve done with the Tom Holland Spiderman movies. They took old Steve Ditko and Stan Lee’s premise of Peter Parker being this high school nerd and they’ve made it really contemporary. They took it and really put him in today’s society…. A huge fan of Captain America, so I like what they did in the Captain America movies. I like Shazam as well and I think Zachary Levi does a great interpretation of a child being given some pretty great powers and having to deal with those…. I can’t put my finger on just one of them honestly.

What do you like about Free Comic Book Day?

People will show up for free books and they’ll be introduced to things they’ll grow to like and get attached to, and they really don’t understand that all of that harkens back to cave paintings. When you’re a comic book artist one of the things you strive for is to be able to tell the story without the word bubbles or the sound effects. You really want to be able to make a visual story that doesn’t need words but the words support the pictures. That goes back to when cavemen didn’t have a fixed language and they communicated on cave walls to record their history…. When you pay attention to comics, they’re pretty deep, they’re pretty in depth. There’s a lot of psychology that goes into really good comics. There’s a lot of visual representation and subtlety in storytelling that people just overlook. It’s great to watch little kids come in and unknowingly just become fans of something that’s a lot bigger than them and it’s actually a part of history and modern culture. — Zachary Lewis

Meet Ed
Ed Smith will be at Double Midnight Comics in Manchester (Comic Con Booth 27) on Free Comic Book Day. See dmcomics.com.

DIY comics

Marek Bennett explains how to make your own

By John Fladd
jfladd@hippopress.com

The thing about drawing comics, Marek Bennett said, is it’s more about leaving things out, rather than putting them in.

Bennett — a cartoonist, the author and illustrator of the Freeman Colby series of graphic novels, and art educator — frequently teaches cartooning workshops to adults and children. Working with children is usually more straightforward than it is with adults, who get self-conscious and intimidated, he said: “It’s much easier for adults to make comics if there are a few kids scattered around the room.”

“Older people end up using simpler pictures,” he said, often stick figures. “I have to remind them that even if a comic uses stick figures, it’s still a narrative.”

Children, on the other hand, feel less restricted about what they include in their comics. “[When I work with children] I start with a stick figure and ask the kids to suggest three details to add to it.” Because Bennett is often a novelty in a classroom full of children, many times they want him to draw himself. He will start with a stick figure. “Then when I ask them for three details, they always name the same three — a hat, a beard, and glasses.” That gives them a framework for their narrative.

The simplicity of the comic medium, he said, is what makes it so powerful and accessible.

“It allows an idea to be as clear as possible,” he said. “A sequence of images is exponentially more powerful than individual pictures. It’s more than the sum of its parts. By limiting the amount of detail, we open ourselves to a more intimate understanding of each other through our art work.”

One of the reasons comics are so well-suited for kids, Bennett said, is that there is such a low barrier to entry. “Unlike video games, sports, or musical instruments, kids and their parents don’t have to invest any money on something a kid won’t be interested in the next week.” If they have a brown paper bag and a crayon, they can make a comic.

Comics make sense to kids, he said. “All my life, I’ve drawn pictures. I would show them to adults or other kids, and they’d ask, ‘What happens next?’ So I’d draw a picture of what happened next, and then what happened after that. The next thing I knew, I’d have a complicated, sequential narrative. That’s a comic.”

The best way to start cartooning, Bennet said, is to put together a booklet and draw a series of boxes on the pages. “Start with a box at the beginning, and a box at the end, then work with them to fill in the details in the middle. Start with a simple character — a rabbit, or a stick figure, or whatever. I had a kid tell me once that he wanted the story to be about him and he said, ‘I want to be a dolphin!’ I asked him why, and suddenly he had a narrative.”

If all that is a little overwhelming for a particular kid, he said, break it down even further. “Use a sketchbook or a drawing pad and have them draw one picture per page.” Then, like the adults in Bennett’s life when he was a kid, guide them along with “What comes next?” questions. “They’ll end up with something like a flipbook. That’s still a story told with sequential pictures; it’s still a comic.”

Bennett said that when he works with groups of children, they will often start with eight-page mini comic books. With minimal guidance kids quickly start addressing some fairly sophisticated concepts.

“They’ll break into pairs or small groups,” he said, “and ask each other who their readers will be and what kind of story will those readers like. It’s empowering; they get to try ideas out on test readers and how to refine artwork and tailor it for the community.”

One of the powerful aspects of comics for kids as creators is the immediate feedback they get and a sense of achievement, Bennett said.

“They see themselves as part of a reading community. Making comics is an entry into graphic novels, which is an entry to reading anything.” If you told a child that they could write a 500-page graphic novel, he said, “they’d be completely intimidated. But if they draw a page a day, with six panels to a page, that’s 3,000 images to tell a story.”

Ultimately, Bennett said, comics are a way to know someone better. He tells a story about leading a cartooning workshop in the United Arab Emirates. The adults he worked with were confused at first; comic art is not a traditional part of their culture. As Bennett led them through the “What next? What next?” process, they became more and more enthusiastic. “One of them told me, ‘This is a way to understand somebody’s heart.’”

More Marek
Find out more about Bennett’s works and where he is headed to teach and talk comics at marekbennett.com.

More from the Vampiverse

Jeannine Acheson and Tom Sniegoski discuss their new work

Massachusetts-based Jeannine Acheson and Tom Sniegoski, the writing duo behind Vampirella: Dark Reflections from Dynamite Comics, which has a release date scheduled in June, discuss their process.

What comes first — the picture or the words?

Jeannine Acheson. Courtesy photo.

Jeannine Acheson: The ideas come first, the story comes first, I think in my head anyway. And we start by writing everything out. The plot, the characters, we start with that and it’s kind of a step-by-step process. Now we’re working on a graphic novel and we’re laying things out and that’s where the pictures come in, for me anyway. Although, I feel like you’re [Tom] more fluid in that.

Tom Sniegoski: When I think of an idea, a lot of the time, especially for comic ideas, imagery is what drives the process. It’s kind of like, ‘Oh, that would be really cool. This could be a good moment in this kind of story if you had this kind of thing.’ There’s a lot of that, but what Jeannine says, we do sit down with a notepad. In the earlier stages it’s just notes. It’s just ideas. It’s almost like a gigantic puzzle that slowly starts to get pieced together so you’re in your proper order by the time you get all your ideas, hopefully, you see the logical story progression and then from there it will go to the next stage … breakdowns, stuff like that.

Tom Sniegoski. Courtesy photo.

How did the collaboration for Dark Reflections, which is coming out in June, come about?

JA: That one was born from the Vampiverse, which we did for Dynamite in 2021 or 2022.

TS: Yeah, I think that’s 2022.

JA: And that is one of the stories from the many threads of the fabric that are the Vampirella stories in the Vampiverse, and this one focuses on a downtrodden Vampirella and Lilith, a daughter of Vampirella, of a Vampirella. It just kind of came up from there because we thought she was an interesting character [and] we wanted to explore what she had to say.

TS: The concept of the Vampiverse is the fact that the character, Vampirella, exists in many different realities and different forms so there’s like, we call them the threads, so every thread is a different story and a different Vampirella. So you could have a western Vampirella and a sci-fi Vampirella, an animated cartoon Vampirella, all these different stories. What it does is allows us to tell as many stories as we can think of with these different kinds of Vampirellas while keeping things fresh. It’s not the same character, she’s slightly different in all of these worlds. Dark Reflections is just another Vampirella in her world interacting with that character who is actually her daughter of a deceased Vampirella. It was fun to do. It allows us to do so much. We’re not completely rooted to continuity, a specific continuity. It allows us to play with that continuity if we wanted to, or ignore certain aspects of that continuity. It’s fun.

What draws you to a particular story?

TS: What draws Jeannine is that I say, ‘Hey, I got an idea.’

JA: Exactly, I can do that.

TS: ‘What is it this time?’ Honestly, you never know. A lot of the times, things just kind of click. You might see something in the news, you might read something in a newspaper, you might be walking around your kitchen and you trip and all of a sudden there’s just this germ of an idea that you then see if it’s worthy. You give it a poke, kick the tires and you start to expand on that idea. A lot of the times, Jeannine will get a text that just says, ‘got an idea,’ and I’ll give her a sentence and I gauge her reaction on the sentence whether we should probably continue to try to develop it or not.

JA: Sometimes it feels like things that come to fruition are things that keep coming up for us. They kinda won’t leave us alone. We have another comic coming out in July and that idea was born about four years ago and it just kept coming back to us and every time we’d be working on something else, this idea would just come back to us and we’d say, ‘Oh, remember that one that we talked about, that old lady living in the nursing home?’ and they just keep coming back and kind of keep expanding. We think about new facets to the character or different things that they could be involved in. The ideas get insistent, they have to be told I think.

TS: You know it’s a good one when it won’t leave you alone and you should pay attention to it. As a writer, here’s some writerly advice: If it keeps coming back it’s probably good and you should keep developing that idea.

Is there an IP or storyverse that you’d like to work on that you haven’t yet?

TS: The thing is, my dream character was Hellboy and I write Hellboy now, so I got that one out of the way.

JA: I don’t know if I have a dream one. Honestly, I think since I started writing with Tom my life has been a series of ‘yeses.’ There’s nothing that I’ve said no to with respect to writing. ‘You want to write Vampirella?’ Well, I’ve never written that before but sure, why not? We finished a novel together during the pandemic. For me, I’m very new to this whole world of comics and writing so I come along for the ride, I say yes to everything.

How does collaboration work between you two?

JA: Most of the time we work in Google Docs over Skype. A couple a days a week I go to his office on the South Shore but all the other times I’m here at my home office on the North Shore. We generally, I would say like 99 percent of the time, work on things together in real time. Occasionally Tom has work outside of our work and I have a little bit of stuff myself. Occasionally he’ll have to go to a meeting and I’ll say I’ll try laying out these few pages and finish up this scene. Sometimes it works OK, sometimes it has to be revised, but I’m still learning. Most of the time it’s literally a team effort. Somebody will write a sentence, somebody will tweak it, somebody will write another sentence, somebody will tweak. It’s very much in real time, writing together, almost all the time, everything.

TS: It’s interesting. I’d never worked that way before. I was solo for many, many, many, many years, so it’s very interesting to spend as much time working on so many different things with Jeannine. I’ve worked with Chris Golden, I’ve worked with Mike Mignola, I’ve worked with all kinds of people. Those relationships are kind of like, you discuss the project, you kinda know what you’re doing and everybody goes to their separate corner and does their own thing. Whereas working with Jeannine, and I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that she’s still learning a lot of this stuff since she’s so new to comics and book writing that we spend a lot of time talking about the process….

If someone stops by your booth on Free Comic Book Day, what can they expect to encounter?

TS: Jeannine will most likely be asleep.

JA: No, you’ll probably give them a hard time.

TS: Never.

JA: Honestly, this will be our third or fourth [FCBD] together at Jetpack Comics in Rochester. Hey Ralph! For me, It’s so exciting just to meet people that enjoy comics. It’s so cool. I think the first Free Comic Book Day we gave out, did we give out posters?

TS: Yeah, we had Vampirella, Vampiverse posters.

JA: Yeah, and that was so cool. It was so exciting to see people who were excited about Vampirella and loved the character and liked the new take we had to come up with. I think it’s exciting for me just to talk to all the people who are interested in comics. We have stuff for sale, but, you know.

TS: We bring like stock of stuff and people buy it, we autograph it and it’s fun. It’s very fun.

JA: It really is, it’s wild. I especially love seeing the families that come in. Parents with their younger kids or like grade-school kids, I think that’s fabulous. I think that’s so cool. Training the next generation. — Zachary Lewis

See Jeannine and Tom
Jeannine Acheson and Tom Sniegoski will be at Jetpack Comics’ event at the Ballroom at the Governor’s Inn in Rochester. See jetpackcomics.com.

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