New Adventures Await Visitors to the NH Lakes Region

This summer, visitors to the White Mountains and Lakes Region of New Hampshire will have more fun things to do thanks to Gunstock Mountain Resort.  The multifaceted resort is building an adventure ropes course and a Segway™ tour route that will add to the many activities already offered at their recreation area in Gilford, NH.

The Aerial Treetops Adventure course is nearing completion at the new Gunstock Mountain Resort Adventure Park.  It will consist 91 games that include 41 course challenges covering over 1000 feet, 22 ladders, and 12 zip lines totaling almost 1,400 feet in length.  “The ATA course will be the largest high ropes, zip line and adventure course in New England,” says Bill Quigley, Director of Marketing and Sales at Gunstock.  “While many are building fun things to stop traffic, ours is unique as it has been custom designed and built within the natural setting at Gunstock, taking advantage of beauty and topography of the 9 acres it covers.”

The Adventure Park will open on Friday, May 27th, just in time for Memorial Day weekend.  The demo course and the five levels of adult courses will be ready for the holiday.  The kids’ course is still under construction, and will be finished by mid-summer along with the zip line tours.  “We are all very excited about the work that has been done since March 29th,” says General Manager Greg Goddard.  “We still have work to complete the entire project by our target of early July, but the Aerial Treetop Adventure course is ready and better than we imagined.”

Also new at Gunstock is a Segway™ tour course, which utilizes the new Segway X2, an off-road version of their personal transportation machines.  Gunstock now has the only authorized Segway off-road tour experience in New England.  The course features some of the resort’s 50 miles of beautiful alpine and cross-country terrain, and guides will offer nature and historical tours of the area in this innovative new adventure.

Get ready for some new excitement this summer, and sign up for a Segway tour or visit the new Aerial Treetops Adventure course.  These adventures are sure to become your next family vacation tradition!  For more information or reservations, call 603-737-4388.

Carrie Reed
The Mill Falls Blogging Team

photo courtesy of Gunstock Mountain Resort

Meredith Eatery’s Dinner Concert Series Going Strong

Jeffrey Foucault performs live at The Grotto on Wednesday, May 18

This past March, The Grotto opened its doors in Meredith, NH, and is already becoming a well-respected venue thanks to its lineup of distinctive national touring artists, as well as local musical talent.

Giuseppe’s Pizzeria & Ristoranté, which has been a favorite live music spot for over 20 years, recently expanded its cozy restaurant in The Mill Falls Marketplace and built a new room in the old linen mill to accommodate larger events.  This new space, called The Grotto, is available for private parties and hosts dancing every Friday and Saturday night with DJs and live bands, but it’s the Dinner Concert Series that sets this venue apart.

In March and April, The Grotto welcomed renowned and highly acclaimed artists David Francey and Willy Porter respectively, both of whom played for a full house.  “The concert series so far is a huge success!” says Julie Gnerre-Bourgeois, owner of Giuseppe’s.  “We have sold out both shows, and everyone in attendance seemed to enjoy the shows very much.”

Next up is Jeffrey Foucault, who will be performing on Wednesday, May 18th.  According to his website, this Western Massachusetts musician has spent the last decade “mining the darker seams of country and blues, producing a string of spare and elemental albums of rare power while garnering accolades across the United States and overseas for a tersely elegant brand of songwriting set apart by its haunting imagery and weather-beaten cool.”

The Grotto doors open at 6:30 with a dinner menu and full bar available.  Julie encourages guests to come early to get a good seat and get started on a delicious meal before the show starts at 8:00.  Tickets are $20.00, which is an amazing deal to see a gifted musician in such an intimate setting, and all proceeds go directly to the artist.  Says Julie of the touring artists, “My interest is in sharing their music with the folks from around The Lakes, Mountains, and Seacoast Regions of New Hampshire.”

For tickets or more information on the concert series, please visit Giuseppe’s website or call the restaurant at 603-279-3313.

Carrie Reed
The Mill Falls Blogging Team

Lakes Region Inns Continue to Support Greater Meredith’s Beautification and Conservation Efforts

Last year for Arbor Day, the Town of Meredith celebrated by planting two Princeton American Elms in Community Park on Main Street as part of a tree planting project through the Beautification & Conservation Fund, an ongoing venture of The Greater Meredith Program.  The group raises funds for the maintenance and planting of trees throughout the community, and The Inns & Spa at Mill Falls has played a major role in the success of the program.

Since 2009, this Lakes Region resort has contributed nearly $41,000 to the fund, allowing over 30 medium and large trees to be planted throughout Meredith Village.  The Inns & Spa at Mill Falls collects voluntary donations of $1.50 per night from guests at to support the effort.  Harbor Hill Campground in Meredith also collected a $1.00 voluntary donation from their guests and contributed over $800 to the fund in 2010.

“We are very proud to call Meredith home and to help raise funds for this beautification program to maintain the existing tree-scapes and add to the natural scenery along the Route 3 and 25 corridors,” says Rusty McLear, president and CEO of The Inns. “We are also proud to partner with the Town of Meredith, and the many other community members who are true collaborators and active participants with us in this effort.  The partnership between The Inns & Spa at Mill Falls and the Town of Meredith has helped to not only bring new visitors to our town but also to help maintain and enhance Meredith’s natural beauty.”

The Beautification and Conservation Fund of Meredith was established in January of 2009 to bring streetscape trees to the village’s core area and the Route 3 and 25 corridors.  So far, the organization, along with several businesses and private citizens, has planted eight Maple trees, an October Glory Maple, two Princeton American Elms, an ornamental Crabapple tree, nine large Red Maples, and two “Valley Forge” Elms, with eight more being planted around Main Street this spring.

“These tree plantings have helped the Town of Meredith qualify as a Tree City USA community again in 2010,” says McLear. In order to quality for Tree City certification, a town or city must meet certain standards established by The Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of Foresters to ensure the community has a viable tree management program.   Adds McLear, “Receiving Tree City certification allows the Town of Meredith to receive extra opportunities for external funding.”

The Inns are pleased to help in the beautification of what McLear says is an “already magnificent part of New Hampshire.”  We hope to see you enjoying the beauty of Meredith soon!

Carrie Reed
The Mill Falls Blogging Team

Image credit: daryl_mitchell at Flickr.com

Don’t Miss The WOW Sweepstakes Ball!

Put on your dancing shoes and come to the Lakes Region for a great night of dinner, wine, and live music, as well as a chance to win a fabulous cash prize, as the WOW Trail hosts its annual ball in Laconia.

Presented by Meredith Village Savings Bank, the 8th Annual WOW Sweepstakes Ball will be held on Saturday, May 21st, in the beautiful Conference Center at Lake Opechee Inn and Spa.  The ball is the organization’s key fundraising event of the year, with over $200,000 raised so far in the first seven years.  Allan Beetle, Vice President of the WOW Trail Committee, says, “It’s the best party in the Lakes Region—it’s really a fun night.”

Each $100 ticket to the ball includes dinner and dancing for two and automatically enters one lucky number into the sweepstakes drawing.  Ten cash prizes will be awarded, starting at $200 and increasing to the grand prize of $10,000, with a total of $13,000 given away that night.  Only 300 tickets will be sold, making the odds really good for those who chip in.  It’s a reverse drawing that keeps the suspense going all evening:  Each ticket holder has a number that he or she chose when buying the ticket, and all 300 numbers are on the wall at the beginning of the night.  As the guests dance and the night progresses, the numbers that are drawn are taken off the wall and out of the running, until there are only ten numbers left on the wall—the ten cash winners.  Then the drawing goes from there with the last lucky number on the wall winning the grand prize!

The WOW Ball will feature a wine bar with a variety of wines and tastings so guests can choose the perfect bottle to accompany the Italian-themed dinner this year, which is catered by Patrick’s Pub & EateryPaul Warnick and his band, Phil ‘N The Blanks, will keep the house jumping with great music, and there will also be a short live auction and silent auction with items donated by local businesses.

“The WOW Trail is very, very popular,” says Allan. “There’s lots of community support.  The first phase, which is now in, gets steady traffic.  We are working on phase 2, and we have a lot more money to raise.”  So far, the group has raised about a quarter of what it needs to build the next section of the trail.  Allan continues, “When we get the Laconia section done, which is about 10 miles, they will be some of the most beautiful trails in the country because our railroad corridor runs along Lake Winnipesaukee, and there are beautiful vistas… when the trail goes in it just opens it up and people are going to be blown away when they can ride their bike from Weirs Beach to downtown Laconia and on up to Meredith.”

The WOW Trail provides a safe and fun place for cycling and walking, and is expected to be a draw for travelers who like to include some outdoor activity in their vacations.  Allan expects the trail to extend the tourist season in the NH Lakes Region, which is now primarily July and August, to early spring through late fall.  “We encourage anyone who is a supporter of the trail, whether they can come out to the event or not, to buy a ticket,” says Allan.  Ticketholders need not be present to win the sweepstakes drawing.  Tickets can be purchased and lucky numbers chosen online at www.meadowbrook.net (look for the WOW Trail link in the right hand column), or in person at Patrick’s Pub & Eatery, Laconia Athletic & Swim Club, or the Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce.  Support a great project and have a ball, too—WOW!

Carrie Reed
The Mill Falls Blogging Team

Images courtesy of the WOW Trail