November 16, 2006

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Nashua Publisher's Note: Songs in the funeral parlor?
By Jeff Rapsis

I don’t know about you, but it’s never too early to start planning how to make the most of Nashua’s annual Holiday Stroll. It’s on Saturday, Nov. 25, and with about 80 different performances taking place all in one night, planning is essential.

I’ve already held one strategy session with the wife, and so far we haven’t reached agreement on which performances we’d like to attend.

I’m interested in the venues, especially the Davis Funeral Home on Lock Street. But my wife, who deals with death all day at Concord Hospital, doesn’t see the value in this experience.

So what else? We’re a little too old for photos with Santa in the Hunt Library, and we’re both disappointed to see that the German oompah band that we’ve enjoyed in years past at the Methodist Church is not on this year’s schedule.

We’re into multi-cultural experiences, though, and the Methodist Church (at 154 Main St.) is hosting Inca Son, a group specializing in “Music of the Andes.” I’ve heard this group before, and they do sound like folk groups I heard when I spent a summer in Peru in 1988.

Maybe we were just hearing the music that gringo travelers hear, but it reminds me of the place (absent the Third World stench) and so is fun to listen to any time of year, Christmas included.

But there’s still time to pore over the extensive schedule of performing groups strutting their stuff the Saturday night after Thanksgiving.

What’s especially cool is the number of venues on the northern side of the Nashua River—not just the funeral home, but the Unitarian Universalist Church, Fody’s Tavern, the Grace Fellowship Church, and more. With the advent of the Jackson Falls Condominiums, Railroad Square seems poised to give Main Street a run for its money.

For more stroll info, visit www.nashuastroll.com.

Penny Pickers update: The last three weekends saw volunteers in neighborhoods all over the city, collecting pennies and other spare change to benefit the Nashua Pastoral Care Center.

Results aren’t in yet, but I’ve been told volunteer turnout was fantastic this year—among other groups, the sports teams of Rivier College joined in on all three weekends.

One thing I know is that a large plastic bag of wheat pennies (those from before 1959) awaits for me to make good on my promise to pay four cents for every one found during the drive.

There’s probably 300 or so, which means I’ll to have to cough up 12 bucks. It’s to support a good cause, and if we find any 1909-S VDB cents (or similar rarities), we’ll sell them and donate the proceeds to the care center.

The other day someone at Hippo got a Buffalo nickel in change, and last month I found a Barber silver quarter from 1910 in a roll of quarters. So here’s hoping.