Calendar and Events

2017 Calendar of Programs and Events

A note about payment for programs and events. We ask that payment be made in advance for all programs and events. If the class or event is cancelled by The Fells for any reason, registration fees will be refunded. Students may withdraw and receive a full refund or apply payment toward another class up to five days prior to the class date. Unless special circumstances warrant, no refund will occur when withdrawal is within five days. Payment for Special Event tickets may not be refunded after the headcount has been made to the caterer, or beyond the “reserve-by” date. Requests for refunds prior to this date will be honored. Thank you for your understanding.

Out and About at The Fells: Winter Wild

Tuesday, January 31, 10-11am

Have you ever wondered how animals get through New Hampshire’s long, cold winter? Our January session will explore what animals are eating, where they live, how they move and what signs of activity can be found. Join Lake Sunapee Protective Association’s education staff in this program for pre-school age children and their caregivers. Children will love the hands on learning and sensory experiences; guided exploration; creative play; and art and music. Free. No reservations necessary. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by The Fells and Lake Sunapee Protective Association.

 Out and About at The Fells: Snow, Snow, Snow!

Tuesday, February 21, 10-11am

Let’s take a closer look at the white stuff! We’ll investigate what makes snow so special and the “secret kingdom” where animals live during the harsh cold winter. Join Lake Sunapee Protective Association’s education staff in this program for pre-school age children and their caregivers. Children will love the hands on learning and sensory experiences; guided exploration; creative play; and art and music. Free. No reservations necessary. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by The Fells and Lake Sunapee Protective Association.

 Keeping Track of Wildlife at The Fells

Thursday, March 16, 7-8:30pm

Sue Morse, the founder of Keeping Track®, is highly regarded as an expert in natural history and one of the top wildlife trackers in North America. Join Sue for an evening presentation about wildlife and their reliance on mast as a critical source of food. The following morning, Sue will lead a moderate 3-hour hike to teach us how to recognize and interpret wildlife signs, paying particular attention to the relationship between the animals and the trees and shrubs that produce mast. This program can be combined with a group hike on the following day for a discounted fee for both events. Presentation only: members; $10, nonmembers $15. Hike only: members $20, nonmembers $25. Combined presentation and hike: members $25; nonmembers $35. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Refreshments served.

About the presenter. Sue Morse, the founder of Keeping Track®, is highly regarded as an expert in natural history and one of the top wildlife trackers in North America. Since 1977, she has been monitoring wildlife, with an emphasis on documenting the presence and habitat requirements of bobcat, black bear, Canada lynx and cougar. She manages her own forestry consulting business, writes a regular column for Northern Woodlands magazine, and illustrates her work with her stunning wildlife photography. She is the author and primary photographer for A Guide to Recognizing the Florida Panther, Its Tracks and Sign. Among Sue’s many awards is the Environmental Leader Award from Unity College. She has also won the Franklin Fairbanks Award for lifelong work enriching the awareness and understanding of the natural world among New England residents. Sue has been featured on National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” and in numerous magazines such as Adirondack Life, Amicus Journal, Audubon, Forest, Nature Conservancy, Ranger Rick, Smithsonian, Vermont, and Wild Earth. Sue lives in Jericho, Vermont.

Group Hike: Tracking Wildlife and Mast at The Fells

Friday, March 17, 9am-noon

Join Sue Morse from Keeping Track for a group hike at The Fells. Sue will identify wildlife tracks and other signs, explaining in detail how the signs came into being and the wealth of detail they reveal about the animals that leave them. She will concentrate our attention on the relationship between our local mammals and the mast produced in our forests. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 ext. 3. This program can be combined with an indoor presentation the previous evening for a discounted fee for both events. Presentation only: members; $10, nonmembers $15. Hike only: members $20, nonmembers $25. Combined presentation and hike: members $25; nonmembers $35. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Refreshments served.

About the presenter. Sue Morse, the founder of Keeping Track®, is highly regarded as an expert in natural history and one of the top wildlife trackers in North America. Since 1977, she has been monitoring wildlife, with an emphasis on documenting the presence and habitat requirements of bobcat, black bear, Canada lynx and cougar. She manages her own forestry consulting business, writes a regular column for Northern Woodlands magazine, and illustrates her work with her stunning wildlife photography. She is the author and primary photographer for A Guide to Recognizing the Florida Panther, Its Tracks and Sign. Among Sue’s many awards is the Environmental Leader Award from Unity College. She has also won the Franklin Fairbanks Award for lifelong work enriching the awareness and understanding of the natural world among New England residents. Sue has been featured on National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition” and in numerous magazines such as Adirondack Life, Amicus Journal, Audubon, Forest, Nature Conservancy, Ranger Rick, Smithsonian, Vermont, and Wild Earth. Sue lives in Jericho, Vermont.

 Out and About at The Fells: Sweet Winter and Signs of Spring

Tuesday, March 28, 10-11am

Days are growing longer and the March breezes may surprise us with snowdrifts or mud puddles! During the month of March we will follow spring’s amazing awakening and progress.

Join Lake Sunapee Protective Association’s education staff in this program for pre-school age children and their caregivers. Children will love the hands on learning and sensory experiences; guided exploration; creative play; and art and music. No reservations necessary. Free. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by The Fells and Lake Sunapee Protective Association.

 Vegetable Gardening 101

Saturday, April 8, 9:30am-noon

Novice or experienced gardener? Need the basics for planning your vegetable garden? Master Gardener Linda West guides you through the process with essential tips on how to establish a garden, what to plant, what critters to expect, and unique ways to grow some of your favorite veggies. Open to all, requested donation $10. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse classroom. Sponsored by the Sullivan County Master Gardeners in conjunction with the UNH Extension Service for community education.

 Out and About at The Fells: Pools of Mud and Magic

Tuesday, April 18, 10-11am

Come explore magical spring ponds full of new life! Peeping frogs, squirming salamanders and emerging turtles will be the stars of our April activities. Join Lake Sunapee Protective Association’s education staff in this program for pre-school age children and their caregivers. Children will love the hands on learning and sensory experiences; guided exploration; creative play; and art and music. Free. No reservations necessary. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by The Fells and Lake Sunapee Protective Association.

 Vernal Pool Adventure Walk for Families

Saturday, April 22, 11am-12:30pm

Celebrate Earth Day at The Fells! Bring the whole family for a learning experience at one of The Fells vernal pools and discover who lives there and why these temporary habitats are so important. Waterproof footwear recommended. Led by Lake Sunapee Protective Association Education Director Kathleen Stowell. Fells and LSPA members free, nonmembers $5 per family. No registration required. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by the Lake Sunapee Protective Association and The Fells.

 Book Discussion: Lincoln’s Boys: John Hay, John Nicolay, and the War for Lincoln’s Image by Joshua Zeitz.

Monday, May 1, 7-8:30pm (Newbury Public Library)

Come join history buffs and local book aficionados to discuss Joshua Zietz’s, Lincoln Boys: John Hay, John Nicolay, and the War for Lincoln’s Image. In his book, Joshua Zietz presents an intimate look through the eyes of Lincoln’s two closest aides into the Lincoln White House and the aftermath of his death. Liz Tentarelli, long-time Fells Docent, leads the discussion about Lincoln’s legacy and the behind the scenes account of the events of the Civil War, The Emancipation Proclamation, and the Gettysburg Address. Books will be available for sale at The Fells or online, or may be borrowed through the Newbury Public Library during the month of April. Free to all. Call 603-763-4789 x3 for information. Meet at the Newbury Public Library, 933 Route 103, Newbury, NH. Co-sponsored by Newbury Public Library.

 Organic Vegetable Gardening

Thursday, May 4, 6-8:30pm

Join Jeremey Delisle, UNH Cooperative Extension Education Center Program Coordinator for a helpful discussion about organic vegetable gardening. Jeremy will give an overview of the most important management decisions for growing a successful organic garden. Topics will include nurturing healthy soils, fertility options, cover cropping, composting, timing of seeding and transplanting, season extension, weed control and pest management. For the novice or experienced gardener. Open to all, requested donation $10. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse classroom. Sponsored by the Sullivan County Master Gardeners in conjunction with the UNH Extension Service for community education.

About the presenter. Jeremy DeLisle is the UNH Cooperative Extension Education Center Program Coordinator located in Goffstown, NH. Jeremy develops continuing educational opportunities for Master Gardeners and provides information and resources for novice and experienced gardeners. Until 2014, Jeremy worked as a County Agricultural Agent for the NC Cooperative Extension Service. His programs there focused primarily on fruit and vegetable production, food safety (Good Agricultural Practices) and the development and advancement of a local foods distribution system. Recently, Jeremy has been seen on WMUR’s segment of Grow it Green.

Thursday’s Child at The Coach House Restaurant

May 4, 5:30-9pm

Thursday’s Child at the Coach House Restaurant at the New London Inn supports local community non-profits one plate at a time—donating 50 percent of each Thursday evening’s net proceeds to a designated organization. We hope that you will join us on Thursday, May 4, for the benefit of The Fells. Savor a five star meal and enjoy the fellowship of Fells supporters. This is a popular event and tables fill fast, so get your parties together and reserve now. Call 603-526-2791 or go on-line to http://www.thenewlondoninn.com/reservations-for-the-coach-house-restaurant/. See you there and many thanks to the New London Inn and staff for their ongoing community support, superb and gracious service, and divine dining.

 Birding by Ear and Sight

Saturday, May 6, 7:30-9am (Rain Date May 7, 7:30-9am)

Join Peter Newbern for an early morning of learning some tricks to identify bird songs and calls by interpreting what it seems like they are singing, followed by a chance to hear and see some of the various neo-tropical birds returning to nest. This is an easy to moderate walk around the grounds of The Fells. Meet at the Gatehouse. Members free, nonmembers $8. To reserve call 603-763-4789 x3.

 Preparing to Open Your Garden Thursday, May 11, 1-2:30pm Both novice and experienced gardeners will learn from this early season gardening program. Fells Nursery Manager Sue Ellen Weed-Parkes shares the steps and special tips for opening your garden—from soil preparation to starting seeds. Meet in the Gatehouse classroom. Open to all, requested donation $10. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Sponsored by the Sullivan County Master Gardeners in conjunction with the UNH Extension Service for community education.

 National Public Gardens Day

Friday-Sunday, May 12-14, 10am-4pm

As part of the annual National Public Gardens Day, join The Fells in a nation-wide celebration of public gardens. “Public gardens are indispensable—they provide places to recreate, learn about the environment and observe the beauty of nature.” Explore the beauty of The Fells and discover the colorful spring blooms in the Rock Garden and the fragrant blossoms of early flowering trees and shrubs. Get a preview of Art in Nature 2017 Outdoor Sculpture. Treat mom on her day (Sunday, May 14) and pack a picnic to enjoy on our Veranda—carry-in/carry-out please. Admission is free to all the entire weekend.

Annual Heather Pruning

Saturday, May 13, 9:30am-noon

Learn about gardening with hardy and beautiful heather as you join members of the Northeast Heather Society while tending The Fells Heather Bed. Bring lightweight hedge trimmers (if you have them), dress in layers and wear gloves. Members free, nonmembers pay Fells Site Admission. Advance registration not required. Meets at the Heather Bed, beyond the Rock Garden.

Window Boxes, Containers and Troughs

Wednesday, May 24, 10am-noon

Fells Nursery Manager, Sue Ellen Weed-Parkes, leads this hands-on workshop on how to design and create eye-popping container gardens that will provide colorful blooms throughout the season. Plants, potting soil and 10-inch containers provided. Members $40, nonmembers $45. Advance registration required by May 22. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Meets at the Nursery at the Main House.

Members and Friends Opening Reception

Friday, May 26, 5-7pm

Join fellow Fells supporters to celebrate the opening of the 2017 season! Be among the first to see the new Gallery Exhibits and Art in Nature 2017 Sculpture exhibit. Take a guided tour of the newly installed sculpture, stroll the gardens fragrant with spring blossoms, and learn new facts about the history of the House through explanatory panels in each room. Complimentary wine bar and light hors d’oeuvres.

 Main House Opens for the Season

Saturday, May 27, 10am-4pm

The Main House is now open 10am-4pm weekends and Monday Holiday through June 18. Discover what life was like on an early 20th century New Hampshire summer estate. See new exhibits in history, ecology and art. Take an historic guided tour of the 22-room Colonial Revival Main House, explore the renowned gardens and sculpture, build a fairy house in the children’s Fairy Village and experience the natural world on an easy hike along one of our scenic trails. Our self-serve on your honor Plant Stand located in the Gatehouse Courtyard is open daily, 10am-4pm. Site admission applies.

 Art in Nature 2017: Outdoor Sculpture

May 27-October 9, 9am-5pm

Some of the finest New England sculptors bring you a new contemporary exhibit of masterfully created sculptures set amid the beautiful gardens and landscape of The Fells. Art in Nature 2017, curated by Debbie Disston, Director of the McIninch Art Gallery at Southern New Hampshire University and by Fells volunteer Janet Miller Haines, promises to please. All pieces are available for purchase with The Fells receiving a portion of the proceeds from each sale.

Gallery Exhibit: A Quiet Witness to History—Helen Nicolay

May 27-July 9, Open during Main House hours

Helen Nicolay (1866-1954), noted historical author and respected artist, was born in Paris, while her father, John George Nicolay, was serving there as the United States Consul. ( John Nicolay was also collaborator and friend of John Milton Hay and was assistant to President Abraham Lincoln). Helen was an only child and as a young woman, she helped her father and Hay write their ten-volume Lincoln biography by taking dictation. Upon her Mother’s death, she became her father’s secretary and hostess, entertaining diplomats and presidents, and witnessing important events of her day. She accompanied her father on diplomatic missions to Europe and the expanding western territory of the U.S. and documented these historic trips in her paintings. She achieved modest success as an artist during her lifetime—two oils she painted of her father hang in The Lincoln Museum Collection. Many others, however, were stored away “under the bed” for over 50 years and have never been seen. Don’t miss this premier collection of Helen’s work. Included with site admission.

 Gallery Exhibit: The Beauty of New Hampshire

May 27-July 9, Open during Main House hours

In this all new juried exhibit, artists from the New Hampshire Art Association capture the natural beauty and allure of New Hampshire’s countryside. From hillside to lakeside and mountains to valleys, this gallery exhibit reflects the exceptional and unique qualities inherent in the diverse landscape of the Granite State. All art is available for purchase with a portion of the proceeds to benefit The Fells. Included with site admission.

Building The Fells: History Exhibit Room

May 27-October 9, open during Main House hours

In celebration of the 125th Anniversary of The Fells Main House, we explore its fascinating evolution through historic photographs and the hand written notes of its builders and architects. Fact: did you know that there were two separate “cottages” constructed in 1892 and 1897 that were joined for 17 years simply by an open air “hyphen”? Find out about this and more in this all-new exhibit! Included with site admission.

Ecology Exhibit Connections: Plants, Animals & the Land; John Hay Ecology Center

May 27-October 9, open during Main House hours

Explore plants and their ecological relationships with pollinators, herbivore, dispersers, and mutualism (i.e. orchids and mycorrhizal fungus) through interpretative panels that highlight how plants and animals interact with the land. We invite you to explore these relationships as you walk along the trails, and through the meadows and gardens; and to share data as citizen scientists by recording your own observations in our Visitors’ Log located in the John Hay Ecology Center in the Main House. Included with site admission.

 Wildflowers of The Fells

Saturday, May 27, 10am-noon

Join Thelma Hewitt for a presentation on wildflower gardening, followed by a tour of the renowned gardens at The Fells. Thelma will show photographs of varied woodland gardens to stimulate your imagination, followed by a discussion of garden design elements. Learn about native plants and their soil, moisture, and light requirements; and about plant combinations that work well together. NEWFS and Fells members $21, nonmembers $25. Meet at the Gatehouse. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Co-sponsored by the New England Wild Flower Society.

Out and About at The Fells: Blooms, Buds and Bugs

Tuesday, May 30, 10-11am

April showers bring May flowers! During the month of May we will get outside and enjoy spring’s best! Join Lake Sunapee Protective Association’s education staff in this program for pre-school age children and their caregivers. Children will love the hands on learning and sensory experiences; guided exploration; creative play; and art and music. Free. No reservations necessary. Meets at The Fells Gatehouse. Co-sponsored by The Fells and Lake Sunapee Protective Association.

 Springs and Headwaters: John Hay’s Boyhood Haunts at The Fells

Thursday Evening Education Series—June 2017

A three-part series of June evening programs and hikes led by Forest Society Naturalist and Director of Education, Dave Anderson. Attend one or all three programs. Co-sponsored by the Society for the Protection of NH Forests and The Fells. Members $10, nonmembers $15 per program. All programs meet at the Gatehouse Kiosk. Advance registration required, please register early. To register, or for more information contact 603-763-4789 x3.

 Naturalist, John Hay’s Boyhood Summers Spent at The Fells

Thursday, June 1, 4-6 pm

John Hay had written in several of his books about childhood summers spent at The Fells; his parents Clarence and Alice Hay; and the special places he fondly remembers exploring. This late afternoon program on the Veranda of the Main House will share readings from John Hay’s works—The Immortal Wilderness, A Beginner’s Faith in Things Unseen and In The Company of Light. Join Dave Anderson as he reads several passages from John Hay’s writings—each inspired by John Hay’s boyhood rambles at The Fells, Lake Sunapee and his own summertime explorations of the former farms which now comprise The Fells and the Forest Society’s Hay Forest Reservation. No hiking, this program takes place on the Veranda of The Main House. Co-sponsored by Society for the Protection of NH Forests and The Fells. Members $10, nonmembers $15 per program. Advance registration required, please register early. To register, or for more information contact 603-763-4789 x3.

 Abraham Lincoln, Behind White House Doors: Memory, Politics, and Gilded Age Histories of the American Civil War

Sunday, June 4, 4-5 pm

John Hay completed his ten-volume Lincoln biography in 1890, just a short time before he took up residence at The Fells. Hay and his co-author John Nicolay thus became part of the struggle over the American Civil War’s meaning and legacy. Professor Robert Bonner’s presentation will draw attention to the broad complex of histories, biographies, and reminiscences of the war years that appeared in the decades after Union victory. Growing popular appetite for such histories (which reached a high-point with Grant’s Memoirs of 1885) was driven in part by the contemporary political implications of these volumes. History-writing in this period was, he will explain, intimately related to the weighty issues of sectional reunification and the re-emergence of white supremacy within the former Confederacy. The Hay-Nicolay Lincoln biography takes on new meaning when set aside the work of such authors as Horace Greeley, Alexander Stephens, Frederick Douglass, and Jefferson Davis. This presentation has been made possible through a grant from New Hampshire Humanities and is open and free to all. No reservations required. Meets at the Main House—walk or drive.

 About the Presenter: A native of Tennessee, Professor Robert Bonner is a historian of 19th century North America and the Kathe Tappe Vernon Professor in Biography. Among the primary themes of his scholarship is the problem of violence, the working of visual culture, and the metageographies of the American “South.” Most of his scholarship has focused on the sectional crisis that led free and slave states towards Civil War and then to an uneasy post-emancipation peace. Previous books include Colors and Blood: Flag Passions of the Confederate South (Princeton University Press), The Soldiers Pen: Firsthand Impressions of the American Civil War (Hill and Wang); and Mastering America: Southern Slaveholders and the Crisis of American Nationhood (Cambridge University Press). He has two books in progress: a biographical study of Confederate Vice-President Alexander H. Stephens titled Master of Lost Causes and an account of Confederate commerce raiding, privateering, and slave trading, titled Slaveocrats At Sea: The Global Menace of a Maritime Southern Confederacy.

26th Annual Plant Sale: Member Opening

June 9, 4-5pm—Held in the Pebble Court at the Main House

Members, this is your evening! Join us for light refreshments and early bird shopping at our 26th Annual Plant Sale. Receive 10% off all Fells plants and get advice from our expert landscape staff. We have an array of outstanding plants, including specialty alpines and rock garden plants, as well some sought after signature plants. Visit our white elephant table that is overflowing with gently used and well-loved clay pots and garden and landscape tools, and meet Kevin Bragg from Canterbury Plantations who grows and sells wonderful heirloom herbs, annuals and vegetables. Not a member? JOIN or RENEW your Fells Membership at our Information Table! Held at the Main House Pebble Court rain or shine. Complimentary refreshing beverages, walk or drive to the Main House.

26th Annual Plant Sale

June 10, 8:30-11:30am—Held in the Pebble Court at the Main House

Buy quality, well established plants and shrubs propagated and field dug from The Fells very own gardens, as well as from the region’s finest nurseries. We also have a terrific selection of Fells signature, specialty alpine, and rock garden plants. Kevin Bragg from Canterbury Plantations joins us and you will love his heirloom herbs, annuals and vegetables. In addition, there will be professional landscape designers/architects on site to speak with you about your landscaping project, and you’ll find unique garden art and a white elephant table overflowing with gently used clay pots and landscape tools. Tours of our Main House and gardens will be offered free of charge beginning at 8:30am to all shoppers. Members, bring your membership cards and save 10% on all Fells plant purchases! Not a member? JOIN or RENEW your Fells Membership at our Information Table! Drive or walk to the Main House, where some parking is available.

America’s Romance with the English Garden

Sunday, June 11, 1-2pm

In the 1890s at the beginning of the modern garden industry, mass advertising, faster printing, national magazines, and free rural mail delivery made it possible to publish seed and nursery catalogs in the millions and send them across the country. The catalogs encouraged the romantic English garden style in essays, illustrations, and ads. The principle elements of that English garden design included the lawn, small groupings of flowering shrubs, a vegetable garden outback, flowerbeds on the lawn, trees to line the property, and a curved walkway. At a time when homeowners were eager to learn how to garden, it was no surprise that Americans everywhere loved the English Garden and that the same garden appeared from California to Maine—even at The Fells. Join landscape artist and author of America’s Romance with the English Garden, Thomas Mickey, as he shares his knowledge of the establishment of English gardens in the US. Books will be available for sale and signing. Open to all, requested donation $10. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Meet at The Fells Gatehouse classroom. Sponsored by the Sullivan County Master Gardeners in conjunction with the UNH Extension Service for community education.

About the presenter. Thomas Mickey, from Rye, is Professor Emeritus of Communication Studies at Bridgewater State University, Bridgewater, Massachusetts where he taught media and public relations courses for twenty-five years. He is also a graduate of the Landscape Institute at the Boston Architectural College. He has been gardening on his one-acre property for almost 30 years and has been a Master Gardener for Rockingham County since 1998. For the past twenty years his garden stories have appeared in newspapers owned by Seacoast Media which covers Portsmouth, Hampton, and southern Maine. He posts twice a week on his blog called AmericanGardening.net. Professor Mickey is the author of four books, including Best Garden Plants for New England. The Council on Botanical and Horticultural Libraries nominated his newest book America’s Romance with the English Garden for its annual Literature Award. The UK magazine Spectator named the book ‘best garden book of the year’.

 Abraham Lincoln, Behind White House Doors: The St. Albans Raid: Confederate Attack on Vermont

Sunday, June 11, 4-5 pm

The St. Albans Raid, a 30-minute Confederate attack on a Vermont town, affected all of New England and also Canada, and has been underplayed for years. Learn about the layers of espionage, covert motives and Confederate Secret Service connected to this raid. In historian Michele Sherburne’s presentation, the raid is broken down from the planning stages and players who acted under the authority of Confederate President Jefferson Davis. Learn of the play-by-play involvement in the aftermath with Edwin Stanton and President Lincoln. The Raid isn’t a just a regional Vermont story; it is a testimony of human strength, Yankee ingenuity, and standing up against an adversary. The complex, layered history of the Confederate Secret network before and during the Civil War is revealed. This presentation has been made possible through a grant from New Hampshire Humanities.and is open and free to all. No reservations required. Meets at the Main House—walk or drive.

About the presenter: Michelle Arnosky Sherburne lives with her husband and son in Newbury, Vermont. She is a Vermont historian and has spent years researching the Underground Railroad and the Civil War, lecturing at schools and local organizations. Michelle co-authored A Vermont Hill Town in the Civil War: Peacham’s Story (2012), and is the author of Abolition and the Underground Railroad in Vermont (2013) and The St. Albans Raid: Confederate Attack on Vermont (2014). She is a freelance writer for newspapers and magazines and works at a weekly newspaper when not on history quests.

 Hidden History: An Easy Hike to Clear CL Hay’s Spring

Thursday, June 15, 4-6pm

This walk at The Fells will re-visit a virtually unknown feature of the former “Fells Farm” era during the tenure of Clarence L. Hay and Alice Appleton Hay. Hidden in the woods below gravity-fed water to fountains in the formal gardens of The Fells, nearby the shore of Sunapee Lake is a small, hidden spring of water. Like an oracle of sorts, John Hay once said, “this is where his father Clarence Hay had kept a tin cup ‘for the thirsty’ and whose waters C.L. Hay proclaimed to be ‘the finest in the State’.“ We’ll visit the spring, clear away the fallen leaves and perhaps reinstall the tin cup.

This is an easy guided walk of about 1.25 miles along The Gatehouse Link and Beech Brook trails at The Fells, with off-trail exploration along the shore of Lake Sunapee, returning uphill from the Main House to the Gate House via the driveway. Includes off-trail exploration and easy walking along trails and woods roads. Co-sponsored by Society for the Protection of NH Forests and The Fells. Members $10, nonmembers $15 per program. Meet at the Gatehouse Kiosk. Advance registration required, please register early. To register, or for more information call 603-763-4789 x3.

Abraham Lincoln, Behind White House Doors: Lincoln’s On the Job Training—Developing a Federal Strategy During the American Civil War

Sunday, June 18, 4-5 pm

As a civilian head of state whose duties include serving as commander-in-chief of the armed forces, the President of the United States occupies an important nexus between politics and the formation of military strategy. Called upon to deal with an unprecedented political and military crisis for which neither he nor his subordinates had been prepared to confront, President Abraham Lincoln had to learn the workings of this nexus “on the job.” Dr. Hugh Dubrulle’s presentation will explain how and why historians differ over Lincoln’s role in developing Federal strategy during the American Civil War. Along the way, he will describe Northern strategy, trace how it changed over the course of the conflict, and discuss Lincoln’s role in shaping the North’s military means and ends. These issues have long fascinated scholars because they are of contemporary relevance, dealing as they do with matters such as civil-military relations and the making of strategy. This presentation has been made possible through a grant from New Hampshire Humanities and is free to all. No reservations required. Meets at the Main House—walk or drive.

About the presenter: Dr. Hugh Dubrulle has taught at the University of Puget Sound and the University of Oregon. Since 2002, he has been a member of the History Department at Saint Anselm College, Manchester, NH, where he is now an associate professor. His fascination with the American Civil War began as a child, while his interest in British history emerged during his undergraduate years at Pomona College when he spent a term at University College, Oxford. Dr. Dubrulle’s research deals primarily with how Britain viewed the American Civil War. In the spring of 2018, Louisiana State University Press will publish his new book, A War of Wonders: How Britain Imagined the Civil War.

Main House Commences Summer Hours

Wednesday-Sunday, June 18-September 2, 10am-4pm

The Main House is now open 10am-4pm Wednesday through Sunday June 18-September 2, and all seven days July 4th week. Discover what life was like on an early 20th century New Hampshire summer estate. See new exhibits in history, ecology and art. Take an historic guided tour of the 22-room Colonial Revival Main House, explore the renowned gardens and sculpture, build a fairy house in the children’s Fairy Village and experience the natural world on an easy hike along one of our scenic trails. Our self-serve on your honor Plant Stand located in the Gatehouse Courtyard is open daily, 10am-4pm. Site admission applies.

 Veranda Concert with Nancy Tripp

Thursday, June 22, 5-7pm

 TBA

A Celebration of Gardens

June 25, 5-7pm

An elegant Garden Party to celebrate the opening of our 2017 Garden Tour–Glorious Gardens and Grounds of the Sunapee Region. Join us for heavenly hors d’oeuvres, refreshing beverages, and music in the beautiful Fells gardens. Ladies and gents, wear your best bonnet or chapeau! Most whimsical wins a ticket to tour all of the stunning private gardens. $100 per person. Reservations requested by June 18. To reserve call 603-763-4789 x3.

Sunset Hill Evening Hike: Returning to the Source of the Brook

Thursday, June 29, 4-7pm

Naturalist, John Hay was fond of hiking in the forests of New Hampshire. His book, In The Company of Light, retraces a hike to reach the hidden headwaters of Beech Brook, the water supply for his boyhood home at The Fells. The spring is hidden deep in the woods and off-trail on the Forest Society’s 700+-acre Hay Forest Reservation located adjacent to The Fells. Join Forest Society Education Director, Dave Anderson, for a spectacular summer evening hike to reach the source of Beech Brook, followed by a rugged bushwhack hike to reach the summit of Sunset Hill, ancestral Hay family summer picnic grounds.

This is a moderate to difficult two-plus mile off-trail hike gains 550 feet to the 1800 foot summit of Sunset Hill. BYO water and snacks. Co-sponsored by Society for the Protection of NH Forests and The Fells. Members $10, nonmembers $15 per program. Meet at The Fells Gatehouse Kiosk. Advance registration required, please register early. To register, or for more information call 603-763-4789 x3.

 Glorious Gardens and Grounds of the Sunapee Region

  • Friday-Saturday, June 30-July 1, 10am-3pm
  • Thursday-Friday, July 27-28, 10am-3pm
  • Saturday-Sunday, August 19-20, 10am-3pm

Nine picture perfect private gardens and luscious landscapes—three different locations on each of three summer weekends. We have chosen a wide range of garden designs and styles, and worked with homeowners to bring you the best of the season. Tour on one weekend or all three, we don’t think you will want to miss a single one! Observe artists painting en plein air and enjoy the music of performing musicians. Check back for more information about the garden locations and how to purchase tickets, on sale beginning May 1.

Glorious Gardens and Grounds of the Sunapee Region

Friday-Saturday, June 30-July 1, 10am-3pm

Stroll through three fabulous gardens. Observe en plein artists and enjoy the beautiful music of performing musicians. Tickets and information available May 1.

Kids in Nature: Painting with Water Colors for Kids (Ages 8-16)

Wednesday-Friday, July 5-7, 9am-noon

Aspiring young artists join artist Debbie Campbell for a three day workshop to learn the essentials of watercolor painting. Students will discover watercolor techniques and how to express their creativity while learning about color, composition and perspective. Bring water, a snack, and dress for the weather. Classroom instruction is followed by “watercolor plein air” amid the beautiful Fells gardens and fields. Appropriate for all levels of experience. Meets at the Gatehouse. Members $35, nonmembers $50. All materials provided. Advance registration required by June 28. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

 Newbury Free Days

July 8-9, 10am-4pm

The Fells Historic Estate and Gardens is proud to be part of Newbury’s historic heritage and civic-minded spirit and extends an invitation to Newbury residents, town employees, civic volunteers, and their immediate families to tour the gardens, trails, and Main House free of charge throughout the entire weekend. Take a guided tour of the historic Main House, go on a garden tour or nature walk, tour the Art in Nature 2017 sculpture exhibit, or simply relax on our Veranda and admire lake and mountain vistas. Please check in at the Kiosk to register for a drawing for a complimentary Household membership and thanks for visiting!

 Veranda Concert with Opera North with Evans Haile and Opera North Performers

Sunday, July 9, 5-7pm

TBA

 Kids in Nature: Photography Camp for Young Adults (Ages 10-16)

Monday-Thursday, July 10-13, 9am-noon

Budding young photographers join instructor David Greenfield for a four day workshop and learn the essentials of nature photography and composition. Bring your own camera (no phone cameras, please) and your creativity, and leave with outstanding images. Meets at the Gatehouse. Members $50, nonmembers $75. Advance registration required by Wednesday, July 5. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

Gallery Exhibit: Sunapee Then & Now: A Babe Sargent Retrospective

July 12-October 9, Open during Main House hours

John W. (Babe) Sargent, (1929-2011), was as an artist, actor, pilot, historian, and business owner. Having lived in the Sunapee area for over 50 years, he had a passion for the history and lore of the region. Babe was a prolific self-taught artist who liked to work with pencil as well as in oil. His artwork reflects his love of storytelling—each painting captures a bit of history and tells the story of the people and places of days gone by. As long-time owner of Sargent’s Marina in Georges Mills, one would often find Babe sketching or painting in between his interactions with customers—while he was undoubtedly garnering more stories for his treasure chest. Open during Main House hours. Included with site admission.

Gallery Exhibit: A Place in Time

July 12-October 9, open during Main House Hours

In honor of the 125th Anniversary of The Fells Main House, a select group of prominent regional artists interprets the rich history of the Lake Sunapee Region through creative works of art. Take a step back in time and experience the natural beauty of the area—from historic buildings to places that reflect a bygone era—then and now.

 Artists Weekend                                                                       

Saturday-Sunday, July 15-16, 10am-3pm

Discover the natural beauty and gardens of The Fells through the eyes of prominent New England artists as they create en plein air. Visitors are invited to observe artists interpret the landscape and watch as their paintings come to life and to discuss their individual techniques and learn what inspires them. Select artists demonstrate special artistry methods. Come on Saturday to see our Young Artist Exhibit of water color paintings and photographs of The Fells. Sunday culminates with a 3pm reception of tea and treats; an exhibit of the weekend’s paintings; and a wet paint sale. Note that Sunday’s reception is free to all beginning at 3pm and that paintings may be purchased off the easel anytime on Saturday or Sunday. Members free, nonmembers pay Fells Site Admission.

Art in Bloom

Wednesday-Sunday, July 19-July 23

Experience our new Gallery Exhibit A Place in Time through the eyes of talented New London Garden Club members and regional floral designers. Experience how they interpret the painted canvas through innovative floral designs—from a single stem set in the perfect vase to an elaborate arrangement. These artists study the texture, color, and composition of their chosen painting, and present their views and interpretations through incredible floral masterpieces. Included with Site Admission.

Garden Clubs are invited to tour Wednesday through Friday, July 19-21, and receive a $3.00 per person discount on admission for groups of eight or more. In addition, Robert Jensen of Robert Jensen Floral Design, New London conducts a floral arranging demonstration on Thursday July 20 from 1:30-2:30pm which is included in the cost of admission for Garden Club members. This exhibit is coordinated by floral designer Nell Leach, who has shown at the New England Flower Show and loves all things natural, often collecting her best material in the woods and along roadside embankments. To schedule a group tour, contact Mary Lou McCrave at 603-763-4789 x 6 or mlmccrave@thefells.org”mailto:mlmccrave@thefells.org” .

All visitors to Art and Bloom are invited to tour the expansive gardens and the 22-room Main House. Make a day of it and bring your own picnic hampers and enjoy lunch on the beautiful Veranda overlooking lake and mountain vistas.

 Art in Bloom: Floral Arranging Demonstration

Thursday, July 20, 1:30-2:30pm

Come and watch professional floral designer, Robert Jensen, interpret a painting or sculpture from the current exhibit. Learn how to select materials and containers and create style, shape and color. Discounts when attending more than one Art in Bloom program. Members: one program $5; two programs, $8; three programs $12. Nonmembers: one program $15; two programs $18; three programs $22 includes site admission. Meets on the Veranda of the Main House. Advance registration required on or before Wednesday, July 13. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

 Art in Bloom: Using Your Camera Effectively for Still Life Photography

Friday, July 21, time 9-11am

Learn to effectively use your camera to capture the beauty of still life settings and designs. Larry Harper of Portrait Design Photography shares tips used by the pros to get the best pictures. Bring your camera and your creativity and leave with outstanding images. Discounts when attending more than one Art in Bloom program. Members: one program $5; two programs, $8; three programs $12. Nonmembers: one program $15; two programs $18; three programs $22 includes site admission. Meets at the Gatehouse. Advance registration required by Monday, July 18. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

Art in Bloom: Still Life Floral Photography

Friday, July 21, time 11:15am-12:30pm

Learn to effectively use your camera to capture the beauty of still life settings and designs. Larry Harper of Portrait Design Photography shares tips used by the pros to get the best pictures. Bring your camera and your creativity and leave with outstanding images of Art in Bloom with Larry Harper, Portrait Design Photography. Bring your own camera. Discounts when attending more than one Art in Bloom program. Members: one program $5; two programs, $8; three programs $12. Nonmembers: one program $15; two programs $18; three programs $22 includes site admission. Meets at the Gatehouse. Advance registration required by Monday, July 18. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

 Introduction to Ferns of The Fells

Monday, July 24, 10am-noon

Join Jane Williamson for a mid-summer walk to identify ferns in the woods, along the roadsides and among the rocks of the Fells. Learn about the structures, evolution and life cycle of these amazing plants. Bring a magnifying glass to check out their pinnules, sporangia, hairs, and veins (and much more!) up close. Members free, nonmembers $8. Meet at the Gatehouse. No advance registration required.

 Newbury Ecology Camp for Children

Monday-Friday, July 24-28, 9am-12:30pm

Children, ages 6-13, will enhance their love and respect for the natural world while learning wetland and watershed ecology with naturalists and scientists. Activities will be outdoors, weather permitting, and include hiking and boating at The Fells. Offered by the Newbury Recreation Department and the Lake Sunapee Protective Association in partnership with The Fells. To register, or for more information contact Travis Dezotell, travis@newburynh.org, 603-763-4940 x210, or go to www.newburynh.org.

Glorious Gardens and Grounds of the Sunapee Region

Thursday-Friday, July 27-28, 10am-3pm

Stroll through three fabulous gardens. Observe en plein artists and enjoy the beautiful music of performing musicians. Tickets and information available May 1.

Fairy House Festival and Tea Party

Sunday, July 30, 1-4pm

This celebration of Fairy Houses connects children to the natural world and includes a reading by renowned Fairy House author Liza Gardner Walsh, book signing, crafts, a whimsical Tea Party on the Veranda, and building of fairy habitats in The Fells Fairy Village. Children are invited to dress in their finest Fairy or Gnome attire. Members; adults $10, children $5: nonmembers; adults $20, children $10 (Includes site admission). Tickets in advance or at the door. To reserve, go online or call 603-763-4789 x3.

About Liza Gardner Walsh: Liza lives on the coast of Maine with her husband and two young daughters. She is a high school English teacher and has worked as a children’s librarian, writing tutor, museum educator, and holds an MFA in writing from Vermont College. She is the author of several books including, Fairy House Handbook, Treasure the Hunter’s Handbook, and Where do Fairies Go When It Snows? Although her books are on a variety of different subjects, at their heart they are about wonder, appreciation, and exploration. The Handbook series aims to get kids outside, exploring nature the way Liza did when she was little, and what she still does with her two daughters and husband on the beautiful coast of Maine. She and her family can often be found making tiny houses for fairies, mice, trolls, and other small creatures while also making forts and other natural installations in the woods. Her mission is to help families connect with each other, the natural world, and make lasting memories of a magical time in childhood.

Dianalee Velie: Poetry and the Creative Spirit

Thursday, August 3, 5:30-7:30pm

Join poet and author Dianalee Velie for a poetry reading on the Veranda. Dianalee will discuss her poems, the creative process and how living in NH has influenced her work. Books will be available for sale and a book signing will follow the reading. Light refreshments. Members free, nonmembers $5.

About the presenter. Dianalee Velie is the Poet Laureate of Newbury New Hampshire where she lives and writes. She is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, and has a Master of Arts in Writing from Manhattanville College, where she has served as faculty advisor of Inkwell: A Literary Magazine. She has taught poetry, memoir, and short story at universities and colleges in New York, Connecticut and New Hampshire and in private workshops throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. Her award-winning poetry and short stories have been published in hundreds of literary journals and many have been translated into Italian. She enjoys traveling to rural school systems in Vermont and New Hampshire teaching poetry for the Children’s Literacy Foundation. Her play, Mama Says, was directed by Daniel Quinn in a staged reading in New York City. She is the author of five books of poetry, Glass House, First Edition, The Many Roads to Paradise, The Alchemy of Desire, Ever After and a collection of short stories, Soul Proprietorship: Women in Search of Their Souls. She is a member of the Vermont Branch of the National League of American Pen Women, the New England Poetry Club, the International Woman Writers Guild, the New Hampshire Poetry Society and founder of the John Hay Poetry Society.

 The Best of Bluegrass and Barbeque

Sunday, August 6, 5-8pm

Brothers House of Smoke brings authentic southern style barbeque to The Fells. AJ’s technique redefines taste—it’s tender and messy in all the best ways! To accompany the smokey heat, enjoy a pairing of ice cold brew from local breweries and the awesome upbeat energized music of the best Blue Grass Bands in the region. You are sure to experience an unforgettable mix of hard driving acoustic instrumentals and vocal harmonies from these talented musicians. Reservations requested no later than July 30. To reserve call 603-763-4789 ext. 3.

 Hay Day Family Festival at The Fells

Sunday, August 13, 10am-3pm

There’s something for everyone; children’s art projects, petting zoo & face painting. This is a fun-filled day for all ages with old-fashioned games, and games of skill for young and old. Come and enjoy story teller Simon Brooks, an old fashion sing-a-long, and a special performance by The New London barn Playhouse Junior Players. Watch demonstrations by local craft people. Explore nature trails; create a fairy house in the Fairy Village: discover Art in Nature 2017: Outdoor Sculpture exhibit and new art and history exhibits in the Main House. Step back in time and take a historic tour of the Main House and gardens, or simply imagine a simpler bygone life while relaxing on the Veranda. A delicious lunch from the grill and strawberry shortcake will be for sale from 11am-2pm. Members free, nonmembers pay Fells Site Admission.

 Glorious Gardens and Grounds of the Sunapee Region

Saturday-Sunday, August 19-20, 10am-3pm

Stroll through three fabulous gardens. Observe en plein artists and enjoy the beautiful music of performing musicians. Tickets and information available May 1.

Veranda Concert with Nancy Tripp

Sunday, August 27, 5-7pm

 TBA

The Fells Main House Commences Fall Hours

September 2-October 9, 10am-4pm

The Main House is now open 10am-4pm weekends and Monday Holidays, September 2-October 9. Discover what life was like on an early 20th century New Hampshire summer estate. See new exhibits in history, ecology and art. Take an historic guided tour of the 22-room Colonial Revival Main House, explore the renowned gardens and sculpture, build a fairy house in the children’s Fairy Village and experience the natural world on an easy hike along one of our scenic trails. Our self-serve on your honor Plant Stand located in the Gatehouse Courtyard is open daily, 10am-4pm. Site admission applies.

 Take a Child Outside Week

September 24-30

In cooperation with Take a Child Outside Week, an international program created to help and encourage children discover the natural world, The Fells extends an invitation to “Bring a child, receive one free adult admission.” Be part of this national movement and bring a child to The Fells to experience the beauty of our natural world. All children are free. For more information see ww.takeachildoutside.org.

Museum Day Live!

Saturday September 23, 10am,-4pm

Museum Day Live! is an annual celebration of boundless curiosity hosted by Smithsonian magazine. The Fells is honored in joining participating museums and cultural institutions across the country who provide free entry to anyone presenting a Museum Day Live! ticket. More information at http://www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday/museum-day-live-2016/registration/.

Putting your Garden to Bed

Thursday, September 28, 1-3pm

Join Fells Nursery Manager Sue Ellen Weed-Parkes to learn how to divide perennials and put your garden to bed. Meet in the Fells Nursery for this hands-on workshop. Open to all, requested donation of $10. Advance registration required. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3. Sponsored by the Sullivan County Master Gardeners in conjunction with the UNH Extension Service for community education.

 Fungi Foray for Beginners

Sunday, October 1, 1-4pm

Montshire Mushroom Club members, Maynard Wheeler and Jill Montgomery present an introduction to fungi for beginners followed by a foray amid the rich Fells woodlands and ending with an identification session. Bring a basket and knife. Members $5, nonmembers $10. Advance registration required by Thursday, September 29. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.

 The Fells Main House Closes for the Season

October 9

 North American Rock Garden Society Presents: Wildflowers of Turkey

Tuesday, October 17, 2:00-3:30

Yasmine Konuralp is the guest speaker at the quarterly North American Rock Garden Society Meeting. 

Christmas at The Fells Preview Gala

Friday, November 3, 5-7pm

The sparkle of newly fallen snow, the serenade of carolers, the twinkling of lights, and the scent of freshly cut pine boughs await. Combine all of this with the creative genius of the region’s best designers, decorators, and talented volunteers, and you will be inspired! Enjoy holiday cheer and sumptuous appetizers. Mingle with the decorators and shop ahead of the crowds at the fabulous Boutique. You won’t want to miss this magical evening. $100 per person includes return ticket. Reservations required by October 27. Reserve on-line or call 603-763-4789 x3.

Christmas at The Fells

Saturday, November 4-12, 10am-3pm

Come tour The Fells Main House and get inspired! Professional interior designers, floral artists, decorators and talented volunteers have sprinkled their magic throughout to create this one-of-a-kind Christmas showcase. Tickets available September 1, $18 in advance through October 29; $23 at the door; $5 children. Available online and at select local retailers.

Tour-goers can also enjoy a scrumptious lunch in our Dining Room Café (open weekends from 11am-2:30pm) where a selection of delicious soups, garnished green salad, artisan bread, beverage, and dessert can be purchased for $15. First come-first served, pay at the door.

Also open to tour-goers is our Holiday Gift Boutique, where we have assembled the finest regional artisans for an unparalleled shopping experience. Boutique Hours, weekends 10am-3pm with your tour ticket and week days (Nov 6-10) from 10-4pm with no tour ticket necessary.

Christmas at The Fells: Ladies Night

Wednesday, November 8, 5:30-7:30pm

Ladies, this is your night! Join us for an unforgettable pre-holiday season event! There is no better time to view the beautifully decorated historic Main House than in the evening. The twinkle of lights reflecting off the antique window glass and the fabulous holiday décor is alone worth the price of admission. Add elegant pairings and tastings, wine bar and hors d’oeuvres, door prizes, the best boutique shopping you can find anywhere, and a return ticket, and you will be awestruck. Get your BFFs together and join us for this extraordinary evening. Shuttle service available from the Gatehouse. Tickets on sale October 1. $45 each, in advance or at the door. Get yours on-line or call 603-763-4789 x3.

Christmas at The Fells Craft for All Ages: Wreath Making and Decorating

Saturday, November 11, 10am-noon

Learn tricks and tips from talented Fells Nursery Manager, Sue Ellen Weed-Parkes who will teach you to create your own wreaths from natural materials. Make beautiful bows and decorate your wreath to take home for the holidays. Children under 12 free with an adult. Adults receive $10 discount on each registration fee when signed up with a friend. Members $25, nonmembers $35, includes materials and supplies. Meet at the Gatehouse classroom. Advance registration required by November 8. To register, call 603-763-4789 x3.