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The Thompson-Ames Historical Society
writes a weekly news release.

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Getting Ready for Gilford’s Old Home Day

Thompson-Ames Historical Society is getting ready for this year’s Gilford Old Home Day, to be held on Saturday, August 27th.

A parade entry is being planned through the coordinated efforts of Thompson-Ames Historical Society volunteers Carol Anderson, Carolyn Brown, Diane Mitton, Mary Chesebrough and Terry Bobseine and the cooperation of Rick and Connie Moses.

Of course, Gilford’s historical society hopes to also make “history come alive” at Gilford Village’s three museum sites.

Visitors as well as town folks are invited to walk along the red brick sidewalk and stop at 8, 24, and 88 Belknap Mountain Road, at the Grange Museum Building, the Union Meetinghouse, and the Benjamin Rowe House, respectively. Not only will newly- received items be on display but also special exhibits and demonstrations will be featured.

Round picnic tables with green umbrellas will mark the site where Gerald Knight and his grandson Jonathan O’Sullivan will be making available slices of cold, sweet watermelon for one hour before the parade and up until noon.

By 9:00 a.m., volunteers will open the doors to the Grange Museum Building, which is on the National Register of Historic Places as the John J. Morrill Store of 1857. In the Homestead Room, visitors will be greeted by Mary Frost while Judy Gazza and Kelley Crompton will demonstrate vintage arts and crafts, such as knitting, crocheting, rug braiding, and quilt making. In the Historic Store, wooden toys of historic design will be demonstrated by Don Frost while Ed LaSala will be on hand in the antique tool display area. Joan Nelson will act as hostess in the Grange Kitchen.

At the Meetinghouse, which is on the N.H. State Register of Historic Places, Lloyd Ekholm, Dale DalPan and Herb Riley will perform the annual ritual of making chairs ready for the public many of whom repeatedly state that the best vantage point for viewing Gilford’s Old Home Day Parade is the Meetinghouse terrace.

Inside the Meetinghouse, the stage area will again resemble a front porch where drama will be shared at 9:15 and 11:15 a.m. and 1:15 p.m. This year the subject matter will be excerpts from Kelley White’s poetry A Gilford Offering and Alvah Hunter’s A New Hampshire Boyhood. On hand will be Kelley White, Stan Piper and Joanne Colby Clark, while Shirley Glines will act as hostess.

After the parade, several volunteers will demonstrate vintage arts and crafts -- weaver Suzanne Pinto at her loom, Robert McDonald making straw hats, Susan McDonald undecided as yet as to what she’ll demonstrate, and Gus Pinto demonstrating at the treadle wood lathe as well as with some of his antique wood planes while Stan Piper will demonstrate several volunteer-made mechanical wooden toys based on vintage designs.

Under a tent, this year’s T-AHS raffle items will be on display. “Sugaring Time”, the theme of the quilted wall hanging, is another joint venture of artist Stan Piper and quiltter Ellen Peters. “Felicity”, the 1774-vintage American Girl Doll, comes with a wardrobe created by artist-seamstress Carol Anderson as well as a journal, a collaborative effort of Dot Pangburn and Joan Nelson with illustrations created by students in Diane Alting’s third grade class during 2004-2005. Raffle tickets will be available at $1 each or $5 for 6 tickets. Volunteers at the Raffle Table during the day will include Judy DalPan, Shirley Glines, Carol Anderson and Diane Mitton.

The Benjamin Rowe House, which is on the N.H. State Register of Historic Places, is another favorite location for viewing the parade. The farmhouse and gardens will be open to the public beginning at 9:00 a.m. To be on hand on Old Home Day to greet the public and to assist in conducting tours of the house and gardens, Education Coordinator Kathy Lacroix has invited the involvement of several volunteers, Cindy Kupetz, Susan Cobert, Nan Fay, Jerry Lacroix, Herb Riley, Nancy Fischer, Carolyn Brown, Priscilla Puleo, Catherine George….

Still other volunteers will demonstrate vintage arts and crafts to help history come alive. Red Work, a vintage method of quilting, will be demonstrated by Carmel Lancia, who co-chairs the Rowe House Gardens Committee along with Marge Muehlke. Other demonstrations will spot light vintage weaving and basket making (Marlene Witham), darning (Barbara Smith Turner), rug braiding (Kathy Lacroix), while, in the theme of waste not, want not, Karen Vadney will show how out-dated men’s ties can be woven to create colorful seats for chairs.

Two croquet sets will be set up on the Rowe House lawns in the hope that visitors will be enticed to roll back the hands of time and join in this vintage lawn game.

More information about Gilford’s Thompson-Ames Historical Society is available on the Society’s website, “www.gilfordhistoricalsociety.org”. To contact T-AHS, telephone 524-0990; if no one is near the telephone when you call, please leave your name, telephone number and a short message, and someone will get back to you.

Fingers are crossed for a balmy, sunny day for this year’s Gilford Old Home Day!