Arts & Entertainment

Dubey's 'Yard Sale' now open: Local play takes a comedic look at yard sale people

 

By Sarah Kinney

 

If by chance, you happened to wander inside 921 Main Street, the former Congregational Church, you might become a bit confused and start browsing. The set of “Yard Sale,” Jonathan Dubey's latest play, is ready for its season of performances.
Built by Dave Dubey, Jill Dubey, Patrick Galligan, and the cast, the set is incredibly detailed, down to the gingerbreading on the porch.
On a lawn of green grass several folding tables are covered with the remainder of Aunt Irene's belongings, everything she couldn't bring to assisted living. There is a wide assortment of items: crystal bowls, a bean pots, cast iron pans, lamps, a family of rubber ducks, Halloween and Christmas decorations, and a big wheel.
Great-nephews Dennis (Mario Molina) and Robert (Tanner Cote) are packing up her house where they used to spend a month in the summer during their youth.
Now, the lattice work on the porch is a bit cracked and the curtains on the front door are dated.
The yard sale brings back lots of fond memories for the brothers, but it also immerses them in the zany world of yard sale people, for which they are not completely prepared.
“I always found the people watching experience to be more valuable than the treasure hunting,” Dubey said of his childhood experience shopping at yard sales with his mother.
The brothers in the play meet 21 yard sale shoppers, each with their own spin on stereotypes.
“Other than those two [Dennis and Robert] there are 21 customers. Giving them all names would have been overload to both the actors and the audience,” said Dubey. Eleven actors play the different shoppers.
Sam Kilbride plays a grumpy old man with a propensity for semantics, a woman obsessed with “Antiques Roadshow” and convinced something would be much more valuable if sold at auction, and a single mother shopping with her young son (Shaun Goyette).
Pamela Abbott and Danielle Robichaud play women who aren't “early birds” but are “old birds.” Abbott also plays a kleptomaniac, and Robichaud's second character offers to buy everything left at the yard sale for $40.
Dubey, writer and director of the play, acts in three roles: as a friend of Kilbride's auction fanatic, a man who thinks the aunt's things are just fabulous, and cowboy-like singer.
June Desmond plays a husband looking for nails even though his wife (Miranda Brazier) tells him he already has a basement full. She also plays a neighbor who allegedly lent Aunt Irene a butter dish.
Drea Chevarie plays a woman who comes to the yard sale only speaking French to the brothers, and Kelly, the girl-next-door of the boys' youth.
Natalie Mae played a man running a competing yard sale, and wife to Dubey's “fabulous” character.
Amelia Kendall saves the day by solving a problem with a Christmas decoration that just will not stop singing.
“It's catchy,” says Dennis of the song.
“So is lice,” retorts Robert.
Reilly Wood plays a guy who absolutely refuses to pay $5 for three cast iron pans, even though he stops Kendall's character from buying them. He also plays a silent hippie-guitarist.
Other members of the cast include Lori Korzga, Tyler Fowler, and Sheri Goyette on lights.
“They are a very talented cast, and it is always fun to push limitations,” said Dubey. “I believe that there is almost nothing that some of these people can not do on stage.”
There is certain to be lots of laughs watching Dennis and Robert deal with the bizarre social “rules” and people of the yard sale experience. Anyone who has ever held or been to a yard sale is sure to recognize some of the character tropes.
“There is almost no better feeling than seeing an actor speaking the lines I've written,” said Dubey. “Except one thing: hearing an audience laugh at a joke that I have written.”
Intertwined with the wit and jokes of the performance, there is also heart.
In the process of the yard sale, the brothers must put a value on the past, both their own and their aunt's. Dennis muses that everything Aunt Irene had was only now worth $317.
Through the play, Dennis and Robert learn that there comes a time to let go of people and things.
The atmosphere of the play is different from Dubey's play last summer, “Arthurian.”
“'Arthurian' was a passion project, a story that was very close to me since childhood,” he said. “[This year,] I wanted to do a show that would be a familiar concept and hopefully draw a crowd.”
Dubey requested yard sale stories from the public, and some made into the script.
Others were left out because of the technical difficulty of trying to put them onto stage.
“One example being a recommendation that baked goods would be sold in the show and subsequently a seagull attack would occur,” he said.
During the dress rehearsal, Dubey thanked everyone for their support and attendance.
“Live theater is kinda dying out everywhere,” he said, “and we need to keep it going.”
“Yard Sale” will be held August 9, 15, 16, 21, 22, and 23 at 7:30 p.m. with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. and on August 17 at 4:30 p.m. with doors opening at 3:30 p.m.
Admission is pay what you can, with a suggested donation of $10.
“People of this area have done a great job in the past supporting local live theater, and it is time to do so again. Not just out of the goodness of your heart, we are offering something in return: a laugh filled night of entertainment,” Dubey said.
For more information, you can visit facebook.com/YardSaleBerlin or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Free introduction to fishing class offered at Umbagog Aug. 15

CONCORD, N.H. -- Calling all want-to-be anglers! The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department's "Let's Go Fishing" Program, the Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge, and the New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation are teaming up to give you the opportunity to discover a recreational activity that is fun for the whole family. A free one-day introduction to fishing program will be held on Friday, August 15, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Umbagog Lake Campground, Route 26 in Cambridge, N.H.

The class is open to anyone, however, those 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Reserve your spot by contacting the Umbagog National Wildlife Refuge, at (603) 482-3415, extension 115. The class is free, and registration is first-come, first-served. Space is limited so call now to reserve your spot. All equipment and materials will be provided. You do not need to have a fishing license to participate.

The morning will be spent at the campground, learning about equipment, safety, knot tying, fish identification, basic ecology and different casting techniques. In the afternoon we will head out on the boats to put your newly learned skills to the test!

New Hampshire Fish and Game's "Let's Go Fishing" program has taught thousands of children and adults to be safe, ethical and successful anglers. Find out more at http://www.fishnh.com/Fishing/lets_go_fishing_class_schedule.htm. The program is federally funded through the Sport Fish Restoration Program.

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department works to conserve, manage and protect the state's fish and wildlife and their habitats, as well as providing the public with opportunities to use and appreciate these resources. Visit http://www.FishNH.com.

 

More Thoughts While Weeding: Stretching the Harvest with Succession Plantings Making the Most of a Short Summer Season

By Ann Bennett

 

 

Summer is impossibly short in the mountains of New Hampshire. Here in the third week of July I am acutely aware that while evenings still stretch towards nine o'clock, daylight fades more quickly than it did just a month ago. The day length, in fact, has been reduced by 30 minutes since June's Solstice. Of course, some folks dread the dog days of August, and are looking forward to September. But that would not be me, particularly in a summer that was so slow getting started.

In the past week, ample precipitation and 80 degree days have brought most crops along at a remarkable pace, and the garden is approaching its prime. Beans, broccoli and summer squash are ready for picking, along with the first peppers and new potatoes. The harvest will soon reach floodtide, sort of an embarrassment of riches.

While I revel in the bounty, there is also the reality of the weeks zipping along towards Labor Day. Which turns my thoughts towards the inevitable question of how many frost-free days remain in this particular growing season. A cold snap around Labor Day would not be at all unusual. Even contemplating a frost is a grim thought.

On the other hand, chances are we still could enjoy six to eight weeks without one, and that plenty of time remains when it comes to beans, greens, cucumbers and summer squash. Though it may seem ironic to be sowing more vegetables at a time when harvesting and handling what you already have takes much of your available waking hours, those vines and bushes will be past their prime come mid-August. Crops seeded now will be ready just as spring plantings give up for good.

This process of succession planting is a strategy that makes the most of a brief growing season in the mountains of New Hampshire. The focus is to remove plants that are no longer producing, and replace them with vigorous successors. This ensures the most effective use of your garden space, be it half an acre or 100 square feet. Some vegetables, like tomatoes and peppers, do take up the space all summer, but others mature much faster. Once they've passed their peak, plan on having another crop ready to go in.

The idea of second and third plantings comes into play right from the beginning as you make initial sowings, and lay out the garden at the outset of the season. How many times has a fellow grower posed that age-old question, "got the garden in yet," and many folks do plant their entire plot from the get go. But while sowing systematically over the course of the growing season takes a little more planning, it sure cuts down on the sense of feast or famine. So rather than planting 100 feet of beans in May, consider 20 feet every two or three weeks until mid-July. It's a great way to avoid a glut of vegetables, extending the harvest in a more manageable fashion.

I make sure to have a basket of seeds with me as I work may way through the garden rows in mid-summer. Having them close at hand facilitates the process of succession planting, jogging my memory to throw in a few coriander seeds as I pull the cilantro that has bolted, and the basil that is beginning to flower. Gaps in the rows of early beans are filled with broccoli seedlings I started in late June, and it is time for a second planting of beets, carrots, cabbage, cukes and a few hills of summer squash. Lettuce, on the other hand, is an ongoing process, re-sown every two or three weeks right up until the first frost.

As you consider succession plantings, think about inter-planting different cultivars. It is a great use of space, and can create a striking visual effect. Crop rotation is an important practice as you plan second plantings, too. You don't want to follow an early sowing with another in the same plant family. Cabbage should not follow broccoli or other brassicas for instance. The same goes for peas. In these and other cases, the vegetables have the same nutritional requirements and are bothered by the same insect pests and diseases.

When it comes to choice of varieties, consider days to maturity, choosing shorter season varieties that will make quick gains under current optimal growing conditions, and be ready for picking in early September. The hard reality is that 50-60 days remain before the prospect of first frost, and what lies between is August's intense heat. Select resilient lettuces like Green Ice, Buttercrunch and Red Sails lettuce that stand up equally well to heat or cold.

A host of vegetables are suited to succession planting. Brussels sprout seedlings set out in July are ready in mid-September, as is broccoli like Comet and Emperor. Carrots are a sure bet, and late in the month is time to sow snow peas, kale and fall lettuces. Given proper care and lots of water through the heat of August, succession plantings will yield a welcome harvest of new vegetables even after summer has departed.

 

Free Waterfowl Hunting Seminar Aug. 23

Get an introduction to waterfowl hunting at a free seminar being offered by the N.H. Fish and Game Department on Saturday, August 23, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Owl Brook Hunter Education Center at 387 Perch Pond Road in Holderness. Pre-registration is required. Space is limited. To sign up for the workshop, call 536-3954.

Carla M. Broman Exhibiting at Androscoggin Valley Hospital

Carla M. Broman, known by many as Carla Lapierre of Gateway Gallery on Exchange Street in Gorham, has her photography on exhibit at the AVH cafeteria Sunday, through September 7. Members of the surrounding communities are invited to join the AVH staff, patients and visitors in viewing her work. She will be holding a "Meet the Artist" reception on Monday, August 18, from 11:30 to 1 p.m. Refreshments will be served. This will be an opportunity to "talk shop" with the artist and discuss her techniques and choices of subjects.
Carla has spent her life steeped in the photography world, from her childhood, through a photo gig with a state mapping agency and on to fulfilling her creativity through her photo artistry. She "focuses" on nature and loves to emphasize the grand scale through her aerial shots. She says:
"Gifts from mother and grandmother set my course early on. My grandmother patiently let a three-year-old look through the viewfinder of her box camera, and mother loved walks in the woods taking the time to examine and name whatever we found... Although father never envisioned his children in the art world, he did give me my first "real" camera...(I was) encouraged and critiqued by a cousin who taught photography at an art school, picking brains and taking classes, learning rules and breaking the same until opportunity knocked in 1973...when I joined a photography department, where more people generously shared their knowledge. Since then photography has truly become a passion and a way of connecting the art of the photograph with the love of the natural world.... As one of my instructors said 'there is always something out there taking of the light and giving back its best. Your job is to find it.' Recently I have returned to my black and white roots. My chosen film is Black & White Infrared which records the "heat" or infrared end of the color spectrum."
Carla is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions throughout her career.
Mark your calendar for 11:30 to 1 p.m., Monday, August 18, to visit with Carla at her reception at the AVH cafeteria. Her exhibit will be up through September 7.

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