The Weekly Dish 21/03/18

News from the local food scene

Greek pastries to go: Join Assumption Greek Orthodox Church (111 Island Pond Road, Manchester) for a drive-thru bake fest on Saturday, March 27, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. An assortment of homemade baked goods and desserts prepared by volunteers and members of the church’s Philoptochos Ladies Society are available to order, like tsoureki (soft round sweet bread), baklava with walnuts and honey syrup, rizogalo (Greek rice pudding), kourambiedes (butter cookies rolled in powdered sugar), finikia (soft cookies flavored with orange zest and topped with crushed walnuts), galaktoboureko (creamy custard with honey lemon syrup) and koulourakia (crisp braided butter cookies), as well as spinach and cheese petas, and pastry sampler platters. Orders are online only and must be placed by March 24. The event is pickup only (no walk-ins) — similar drive-thru fests featuring more Greek meals are also planned for April and May. Visit

King Kone to reopen: Soft-serve ice cream stand King Kone (336 Daniel Webster Highway, Merrimack) will reopen for its 49th season on Saturday, March 20, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., owner George Soffron confirmed. King Kone features around 30 flavors of soft-serve ice cream, more than a half dozen of which are available at a given time. Soffron told the Hippo that the stand will be offering blackberry, coffee and orange flavors of soft-serve during its opening weekend, in addition to the usual chocolate, vanilla and twist — flavors are often rotated out each week on Tuesdays or Wednesdays. This will be the first season that King Kone will be accepting charge cards as a form of payment. The stand will be open Monday through Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday, from noon to 9 p.m., but Soffron said those hours may extend to around 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays during the summer. Visit or find them on Facebook @kingkonemerrimack.

Plant-based palates: The Derry Public Library will hold a virtual presentation on Wednesday, March 24, at 6 p.m., all about plant-based diets. Hannaford dietitian Heidi Tissot will talk about the emerging plant-based eating movement and the foods that fit into this pattern with moderation. She’ll also showcase specific plant-based proteins and other vegan and vegetarian options that you can easily implement in your diet. Visit to register — a Zoom link will be sent to all participants prior to the program.

Cocktails and craft brews: Get your tickets now for one of two spring craft beer cocktail dinners at each of the Copper Door Restaurant locations (15 Leavy Drive, Bedford; 41 S. Broadway, Salem), the next installment of the eatery’s “Forks & Corks” dinner series. Happening on Tuesday, April 6, in Salem, and on Wednesday, April 7, in Bedford, each dinner will begin with a reception at 6 p.m., followed by a multi-course meal of items paired with a different cocktail using a local or regional brew as an ingredient. Courses will include frisee salad, roast lamb, blackened halibut tostada, steak frites and an espresso mousse for dessert, while the breweries represented in the cocktail pairings will be 603 Brewery in Londonderry, Stoneface Brewing Co. in Newington, Jack’s Abby in Framingham, Mass., SoMe Brewing Co. in York, Maine, and Woodland Farms Brewery in Kittery, Maine. Tickets are $75 per person and must be purchased online in advance. Visit

Treasure Hunt 21/03/18

Dear Donna,
My sister came across these glasses at a flea market. We decided to get your input on them. They are different, but do they have any value?

Kim and Bev
Dear Kim and Bev,These glasses are fun and wild! They look like mid-century style opera glasses. That is how women would use their spectacles back in the day — to watch operas, plays, etc. — and maybe they were used for the same purpose even in the 1950s and ’60s.

It’s tough to tell the age from a photo but if they are from the ’50s or ’60s they would probably have a value in the range of $100. Beware, though; these glasses were reproduced because they were so funky and fun. New ones would be in the range of $10 to $20.

I think for you to really determine the value you should have them looked at in person. But until then you have a general idea, and time to have fun with them. They could still be used today depending on the lens strength.

Kiddie Pool 21/03/18

Family fun for the weekend

Photo courtesy of Charmingfare Farm.

Maple madness

Celebrate Maple Month in New Hampshire at the Maple Express event at Charmingfare Farm (774 High St., Candia, 483-5623, On Saturday, March 20, and Sunday, March 21, the farm is hosting the final weekend of its Maple Express experience, which includes a horse-drawn sleigh ride or a tractor train ride to an authentic sugar shack, where you’ll meet a sugar maker and learn about tree tapping and watch how sap is boiled to make maple sugar and maple syrup. You’ll get a chance for some taste testing too, with syrup served on silver dollar pancakes. After the ride back to the farm, head to the Discover Barn to visit with some animals. Various times are available between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Tickets must be purchased online. General admission is $22; kids 23 months and under are free. Book an entire sleigh for up to four passengers for $199. There’s also a Sugar Shack Live event on Saturday, March 20, at various times in the evening, for $25 per person. The event includes a visit to the sugar shack, where you can sit next to campfires and listen to live music from Dan Morgan. Visit the website to register for either event.

In Warner, the Mt. Kearsarge Indian Museum (18 Highlawn Road) is hosting Maple Day on Saturday, March 20, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be outdoor demonstrations of sap boiling and tomahawk throwing from 10 a..m. to 3 p.m., an informal walking tour of Medicine Woods at 11 a.m., a cooking demo at noon, and an outside walking tour of the 12-acre campus at 1 p.m. with the museum director. The museum will be open for self-guided tours (regular admission applies, $9 for adults, $8 for seniors and students, $7 for kids 6 to 12, no charge for kids under 6 or for Native Americans), and there will be maple syrup for sale from a local sugar house. The event is weather-dependent. Call 456-2600 or visit

Candy crush

Chunky’s Cinema Pub is hosting a family-friendly Theater Candy Bingo event on Saturday, March 20, at noon and 6 p.m. at its Manchester location (707 Huse Road), and at 6 p.m. that day at its Nashua location (151 Coliseum Ave.) and its Pelham location (150 Bridge St.). Purchase a ticket online to reserve a spot; for $4.99 you get a ticket and a box of Chunky’s theater candy. Players will turn in their candy to the host to get a bingo card, then play a few rounds to try to win some of that candy as well as other Chunky’s prizes. Visit

Starting from seeds

It’s time to get ready!

I love starting seedlings indoors when it’s still cold and raw outside. It makes me dream of summer and the first red tomato. For me, it is still too early to plant most things, and I certainly don’t want to have to baby my seedlings along for 12 weeks or more. But if you haven’t ever set up grow lights and don’t have all the equipment for indoor growing, now is the time to get everything you need before the stores sell out.

First, some basics: You need lights over your seedlings in order to get good plants. Yes, I know some people grow things on a bright windowsill for a few weeks, but getting sturdy tomato plants or zesty zinnias requires supplemental lighting.

Second, you can’t use garden soil to grow your seedlings. Ordinary garden soil is too heavy and gets compacted with watering, and it may harbor fungal diseases. You need to purchase potting soil.

Last, you need a place that is at least 60 degrees but no more than 70 degrees. Cooler temps at night are good. Electric heat mats placed under your seedlings will help get quick, even germination but are not required.

There are several types of lights for growing seedlings. For years I used fluorescent lights: 4-footers with fat T-12 tubes. These work but now have been replaced with more energy-efficient, slimmer, T-8 tubes. There are also LED grow lights of various sorts that use even less energy, though those can be very expensive.

Sold as shop lights, T-8 two-tube fixtures should cost around $20 each, plus the fluorescent tubes, which cost around $8 each. But do not, I repeat, DO NOT spend the money to buy full-spectrum tubes, which cost upward of $35 each. You are not raising plants for sale, and for the short time they will spend in your basement, regular cool white tubes are fine. Or mix cool and warm white to get a broader light spectrum.

If you have a warm basement, I’d suggest that the easiest approach for starting a few things would be to use a card table and 4-foot fluorescent fixtures hanging from the ceiling. Put plastic over the table to protect it from water spills.

You can also go to my website,, and search for “Building a Plant Stand.” That will give step-by-step directions for building an inexpensive A-frame plant stand that will hold six flats, and have room below it for four to six more flats on the floor.

Your hardware store can sell you something called “jack-chain” that will allow you to adjust the height of your lights as your plants grow. Ideally, your lights will hang about 6 inches above the top of your plants. Two 4-foot fixtures, each with two tubes, hanging a few inches apart will illuminate four flats (or trays) of seedlings. When you buy your flats, be sure to get those that do not have holes in the bottom, as some do. The flimsy “six-packs” that fit into the flats come in various sizes, but I always look for the biggest, deepest cells. So, yes, you can get tiny cells that will allow you to plant 48 or even 72 plants in a flat, but there is not much room for roots.

The flimsy six-packs tend to self-destruct easily, particularly if you try to wash them out for re-use. But there are heavy-duty planting trays and cells that will last many years. Gardener’s Supply sells them, along with clear domes to go over them. They cost more but will last forever, and some have self-watering features.

What about the soil mix for growing? Buy good-quality “seed starting mix” labeled as such. I mix it with high-quality compost in a 50-50 ratio. Sometimes I make my own starting mix using peat moss, perlite, vermiculite, compost and a slow-release organic bagged fertilizer. I start about 10 flats of plants each year, so there are cost savings for making my own mix.

Seeds are very susceptible to drying out, which can be lethal. One way to keep that from happening is to check on them often. Once a day is fine. Or, if you have a busy schedule, buy clear plastic covers that fit over each flat. These, like the flats, are reusable. They will steam up and rain the moisture back onto your plants, just like a tropical jungle. Remove them when most cells have plants that have germinated.

How deep should you plant your seeds? About three times the length of the seed. Tiny seeds need just a thin sprinkling of soil mix over them. Bigger things like pumpkin seeds can be covered with half an inch of soil mix. Press down lightly with your fingers after covering the seeds so the soil mix is in good contact with the seed.

Lastly, water them. I like a soda bottle for watering, as it can deliver a nice slow trickle. Water the soil mix before planting, because if it is too dry, it is resistant to absorbing water.

The bottom line is that starting seeds is fun. And it lets you choose plants you might not find at the garden center. So get your materials and set up your lights. I start tomatoes and other frost-sensitive plants six to eight weeks before I would put them in the garden.

Airport art exhibition via iPhone

There’s an augmented reality app for that

In the early 1990s, Tom McGurrin crafted a brooch from gold and a single pearl. The brooch’s design is organic in nature, almost resembling that of a caterpillar on a branch. He hammered the gold against granite and folded it until he was satisfied with its texture. Then he sold it. But he never imagined that someday anyone with a smartphone would be able to open an app and see that brooch in a virtual art exhibition. In fact, he didn’t even know what a smartphone was.

Today, the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen is using technology to make items like that brooch viewable beyond the walls of the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, where the physical collection is currently on display. The League partnered with Aery, an augmented reality app, to bring its museum collection to Apple devices.

“It’s a great way to bring forward what’s happening in technology and how it relates to the world of craft and art,” said Miriam Carter, the executive director of the League of NH Craftsmen. “Everyone loves technology these days, so it advances the possibilities of what we can do to show beautiful, handmade crafts.”

The Augmented Reality Exhibition includes pieces ranging from carved birds and lamps made of jade to the gold brooch crafted by McGurrin.

Objects in the League of NH Craftsmen’s collection were photographed from all angles in order to create complete 3D images, which were then uploaded to Aery.

“You can then see the entire [object] as it exists,” Carter said.

The app also allows viewers to manipulate the objects; they can have some fun by placing them in front of scenic backdrops or changing their size. For example, a carved bird that’s only a few inches tall can be made eight feet tall and positioned to tower over a backdrop of cars.

The project was spearheaded by the New Hampshire Business Committee for the Arts, of which the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, League of NH Craftsmen and Aery are all members.

“We are working to create partnerships between our members that allow us to demonstrate the creative economy at work,” said Tricia Soule, executive director of the committee.

Originally, the exhibit was only going to be on display at the Manchester airport.

“The airport is an access point for people coming to New Hampshire, so we wanted to have this featured there,” Carter said. “We’re a large, iconic New Hampshire organization and we wanted to let people know about us and all the wonderful cultural entities in the state itself.”

Soule also had a clear vision going into the project: “To bring artwork into the airport to showcase arts and cultural organizations in the state of New Hampshire … [and to] showcase New Hampshire as a destination for people to enjoy arts and culture.”

And then the airport closed.

Now, though the exhibition has been on display at the airport since December, even people who are not traveling can access it through the New Hampshire Business Committee for the Arts’s channel on Aery. Karina Mitchell, vice president of Aery, describes it as “an augmented reality app that allows guests to view augmented reality art in their home as a curated collection.”

Carter said she’s excited for a time when the League’s Exhibition Gallery in Concord can reopen and the permanent collection can be experienced in person again; the Gallery has been closed for about a year because of the pandemic.

“That’ll be our opening, celebratory event when we reach some form of normalcy,” she said with a laugh. “At that time, we’ll actually have folks on hand to show the app as well. So you’ll see the live objects, but you’ll also see what this app can do.”

As for McGurrin? “Nothing really replaces looking at something in person.” On the other hand, he adds, “It’s kind of a lot of fun.” – By Sadie Burgess

Augmented Reality Exhibition
When: All day, every day through May
Where: Aery AR app (iOS compatible)
More info:

Featured photo: Image from Aery. Courtesy of Tricia Soule.


Call for Art

NHAA SPRING JURYING The New Hampshire Art Association accepts new members. Jurying takes place on Mon., March 22. For a prospectus and application form, visit and click on “Become a Member.” Applications and application fee payment are due by Thurs., March 18, and can be submitted online or in person at the NHAA headquarters (136 State St., Portsmouth). Instructions for dropping off and picking up artwork will be emailed after an application and payment is received. Call 431-4230.
MAGNIFY VOICES EXPRESSIVE ARTS CONTEST Kids in grades 5 through 12 may submit creative may submit a short film (2 minutes or less); an original essay or poem (1000 words or less); or a design in another artistic medium such as a painting, song or sculpture that expresses their experience or observations of mental health in New Hampshire. Art pieces will be showcased to help raise awareness, decrease stigma and discrimination, and affect change to ensure socially and emotionally healthy growth for all children in New Hampshire. Submission deadline is March 31. Prize money will be awarded for grades 5 through 8 and grades 9 through 12. A celebration will take place in May, date TBD. Email
ART ON MAIN The City of Concord and the Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce are seeking professional sculptors for year-round outdoor public art exhibit set up in Concord’s downtown. Must be age 18 or older. Submit up to two original sculptures for consideration. Submission deadline is March 31. Sculptors will be notified of their acceptance by April 30. Installation will begin on May 21. Exhibit opens in June. Selected sculptors will receive a $500 stipend. All sculptures will be for sale. Visit, call 224-2508 or email

Classes & lectures

“NORMAN ROCKWELL AND FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT” Jane Oneail presents a lecture. Part of Concord’s Walker Lecture Series. Virtual, via Zoom. Wed., March 17, 7:30 p.m. Free and open to the public. Call 333-0035 or visit


“THE VIEW THROUGH MY EYES” The New Hampshire Art Association presents works by pastel artist Chris Reid. Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce Gallery, 49 S. Main St., Concord. On display now through March 18. Visit or call 431-4230.
“ON THE BRIGHT SIDE” New Hampshire Art Association features works by multiple artists in a variety of media. On view now through March 28, in person at NHAA’s Robert Lincoln Levy Gallery (136 State St., Portsmouth) and online. Gallery hours are Monday and Tuesday by appointment, Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Online opening reception to be held on Friday, March 5, at 6:30 p.m., via Zoom. Visit or call 431-4230.
GALLERY ART A new collection of art by more than 20 area artists on display now in-person and online. Creative Ventures Gallery (411 Nashua St., Milford). Call 672-2500 or visit
“TRANSFORMATIONS: NATURE AND BEYOND” The New Hampshire Art Association presents works by digital artist William Townsend. Greater Concord Chamber of Commerce Gallery, 49 S. Main St., Concord. On display March 23 through June 17. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visit or call 431-4230.


NASHUA PUBLIC ART AUDIO TOUR Self-guided audio tours of the sculptures and murals in downtown Nashua, offered via the Distrx app, which uses Bluetooth iBeacon technology to automatically display photos and text and provides audio descriptions at each stop on the tour as tourists approach the works of art. Each tour has 10 to 15 stops. Free and accessible on Android and iOS on demand. Available in English and Spanish. Visit



HAMLET Video auditions for post-apocalyptic reimagining of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, produced by Manchester-based theater company Cue Zero Theatre Co. Open roles include Gertrude, Laertes, Guildenstern/Bernardo and ensemble characters. Performers must be at least 16 years old by opening night. To audition, submit a one-minute video of yourself performing a Shakespearean monologue that showcases your theatrical abilities by 11:59 p.m., on Sun., March 21. Callbacks will be held in person on Thurs., March 25, from 6 to 9 p.m. Visit or email


A TEMPEST PRAYER New Hampshire Theatre Project’s SoloStage program presents. Fri., March 19, and Sat., March 20, 8 p.m., and Sun., March 21, 2 p.m. Performances held virtually and in-person at 959 Islington St., Portsmouth. In-person show tickets cost $30, and virtual show tickets cost $20. Call 431-6644 or visit
FIFTH ANNUAL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL New Hampshire Theatre Project presents. Five storytellers tell traditional and personal tales inspired by NHTP’s 2020 – 2021 MainStage theme “What Are You Waiting For?” Sat., April 10, 7 p.m. The Music Hall Historic Theater, 28 Chestnut St., Portsmouth. Tickets cost $36. Call 431-6644 or visit

The Art Roundup 21/03/18

The latest from NH’s theater, arts and literary communities

“45,000 Quilt Project” exhibit. Courtesy photo. Peter Josephson in NH Theatre Project’s production of A Tempest Prayer. Photo by Dan Derby.

A quilted collaboration: Two Villages Art Society has an exhibit, “45,000 Quilt Project,” on display at the Hopkinton Town Hall (330 Main St., Hopkinton) now through March 24. The exhibit was created by Concord artist Glen Ring, who was inspired to speak out about U.S. immigrant detainment practices after learning that there were, on average, 45,000 men, women and children in detainment each day in 2019. “I needed people to see the enormity of the injustice being perpetrated on traumatized people seeking welcome and comfort in our country,” Ring said in a press release. More than 60 artists and activists from 12 states and Mexico contributed to the exhibit, which features six 9-by-9-foot quilted panels comprising 45 squares, each square with 1,000 marks to represent the on-average 45,000 individuals detained in the U.S. each day in 2019. “I imagined the impact of seeing 45,000 marks on a huge quilt would remain in viewers’ minds,” Ring said. At a virtual event on Thursday, March 18, at 7 p.m., Ring will discuss the exhibit and the role of art in social justice and activism. Registration is required. Visit or call 413-210-4372.

SoloStage series concludes: New Hampshire Theatre Project’s new play development program SoloStage presents its third and final production, A Tempest Prayer, March 19 through March 21, in person (theater at 959 Islington St., Portsmouth) and online, with showtimes on Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. The new play, written and performed by Peter Josephson, is an original adaptation of William Shakespeare’s The Tempest for today’s times. Told through text, movement and music, The Tempest Prayer explores the social and political pressures of the last year and examines what it means to be a white male in America. Tickets cost $30 for in-person shows and $20 for virtual shows. A Tempest Prayer as well as the SoloStage program’s two previous productions, The Adventures of Sleepyhead by Gemma Soldati and Where Do I Begin? Stephanie Lazenby, will be available to watch on demand during SoloStage Encore from Thursday, March 25, at 10 a.m. through Sunday, March 28 at 10 p.m. “These artists, and their collaborators, have delved into three uniquely magical worlds that represent our dreams, our memories and our hopes for the future,” NHTP artistic director Catherine Stewart said in a press release. “It has been a true gift to witness this work come to our stage, and that’s why we wanted to give the audience one more chance to view these vitally important works.” Tickets to watch the shows on demand cost $10 per show. Additionally, there will be an event held over Zoom on Thursday, March 25, at 7 p.m. featuring Stewart in conversation with the SoloStage playwrights. “We’ve met monthly since October to discuss making theater, both the joys and the challenges. We wanted to open the door on that conversation, for our final gathering,” Stewart said. “We hope artists and audiences alike will join us to explore the process of making, and the unique insights of that work which occured in the somewhat solitary world we find ourselves in.” The Zoom event is free, but registration is required. Call 431-6644 or visit

Big, happy art: The New Hampshire Art Association has two group art exhibits on view now through March 28, in person at NHAA’s Robert Lincoln Levy Gallery (136 State St., Portsmouth) and online. “On the Bright Side” features art in a variety of media, with a bright and cheerful theme. “After a challenging year for everyone, what better way to look forward to a better year ahead than to focus on the positive,” NHAA board president Renee Giffroy said in a press release. “Art can heal and be uplifting to both the artist and the viewer.” “LargeWorks” features more than 30 works of art in a variety of media measuring 48 inches or larger. Gallery hours are Monday and Tuesday by appointment, Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Visit or call 431-4230.

Featured photo: “45,000 Quilt Project” exhibit. Courtesy photo. Peter Josephson in NH Theatre Project’s production of A Tempest Prayer. Photo by Dan Derby.

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