Do you sometimes forget why you love the Upper Valley? It happens. All it takes is getting stuck in traffic on Route 12-A in downtown West Lebanon.
That will make just about anyone momentarily forget that they live in one of the most culturally rich and diverse environments in the United States.
We pulled together a list of 10 events taking place over the weekend of October 27 and 28. We think it proves our point. Moments of inconvenience aside, the Upper Valley is one fully engaged, happening place to live.
Saturday, October 27
- 8 a.m.: Community breakfast at the Grange Hall on Main Street in Norwich, Vermont. Go with a big appetite, because the buffet includes pancakes, French toast, bacon, eggs, sausage, biscuits and gravy, beverages, and the one thing no Upper Valley breakfast can be without—real maple syrup. Cost: $5 to $8.
- 11 a.m.: Art exhibit at AVA Gallery on Bank Street in Lebanon, New Hampshire. This multidimensional exhibit features the work of four different artists. View prints on wood and paper by Rachel Gross, assemblage by Stina Köhnke, watercolor by Wendy Briggs Powell, and ceramics by Boyan Moskov. The doors close at 5 p.m. Cost? There is none.
- 1 p.m.: Met Opera at Hopkins Center for the Arts in Hanover, New Hampshire. The Metropolitan Opera comes directly to you via a live, high-definition broadcast of Puccini’s” La Fanciulla del West.” It’s three hours and 22 minutes of gun-slinging, love, and betrayal as told through the beautiful voices of soprano Eva-Maria Westbroek, tenor Jonas Kaufmann, and baritone Zeljko Lucic. Cost is $29, considerably less than transportation, hotel accommodations, food, and tickets in New York City.
- 5 p.m.: Chicken Pie Supper at the Hanover Center Church in Etna. Long-running community dinners such as this one bring people out by the hundreds. Seatings for this meal take place at 5, 6, and 7 p.m., so you can be sure of finding a place at the table. What’s on the menu? Chicken pie, mashed potatoes, butternut squash, cranberry sauce, and homemade pies. Cost is $10 to $12, free for children under 6. Not in the mood for chicken pie? Check out the roast pork supper at Our Lady of the Angels Church in Randolph, Vermont.
- 5:45 p.m.: Learn to Curl at Barwood Arena in White River Junction. This sport is gaining in popularity around the Upper Valley, so if you’ve ever wanted to check it out, here’s your chance. You need to register online with the Upper Valley Curling Club and they’ll do the rest, providing you with equipment and teaching all the basics of the game. Just be sure to dress warm and wear shoes with non-skid soles. Cost is $25.
- 7:30 p.m.: Outside Mullingar at the Shaker Bridge Theatre in Enfield, New Hampshire. A romantic comedy about two rural Irish farmers, Outside Mullingar was nominated for a Tony for Best Play. You get to experience this play in the intimate theatre in the round setting of the Shaker Bridge Theatre. Cost is $35.
- 8 p.m.: Dartmouth College Gospel Choir at Hopkins Center for the Arts in Hanover, New Hampshire. Faith, love, and inspiration come to life as Dartmouth students and community vocalists from all walks of life come together with a full band to perform spirituals and contemporary gospel hits from a variety of musical genres. Cost is $15.
Sunday, October 28
- 10:30 a.m.: Guided Forestry Hike at the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park in Woodstock, Vermont. Start your Sunday morning with a one-hour hike through a sustainably managed working forest. You’ll learn how people shape the landscape in the past, present, and future, and discover strategies for dealing with invasive species and climate change. No cost.
- 1 p.m.: English Country Dance at Tracy Hall in Norwich, Vermont. Kick up your heels to the sounds of live period music played on violin, viola, and piano. Beginners are welcome. You don’t need a partner. All dances are taught. So why not go? Cost is $8 to $10.
- 4 p.m.: West Side Story at Loew Auditorium in Hanover, New Hampshire. End your weekend with a celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birthday that includes a special screening of the classic musical inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Cost is $5 to $8.