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Albuquerque, New Mexico visits New Hampshire Seacoast

posted Jul 11, 2019, 10:44 AM by FriendshipForce NHSeacoast   [ updated Nov 8, 2019, 5:03 AM ]





The Friendship Force of the New Hampshire Seacoast welcomed 11 Friendship Force "ambassadors" from Albuquerque, New Mexico and 2 from Greeley, Colorado from June 8-16, 2019. They stayed in member homes and got to know our region through daily activities organized by club members.

 

Their first full day here was a ‘free’ day for ambassadors and their home hosts to explore the area and points of interest that they would not see during the week’s activities. The Shaker Village in Canterbury, the beautiful Fuller Gardens in Rye, Squam Lake, the filming location of the movie, ‘On Golden Pond,’ and the New Hampshire Seacoast (it happened to be World Ocean Day so there was a lot going on!) were some of the locations visited. The day ended with a Welcome Dinner and an opportunity for all club members to meet the ambassadors.

 

On Monday, the group traveled by train to Boston where they walked the Freedom Trail. They also visited the Swan Boats and the ‘Make Way for Duckling’ statues in the Boston Public Garden.

 

Tuesday was ‘Maine’ day. The rainy weather unfortunately prevented a walk on the Marginal Way and gave an obstructed view of Nubble Light in York. However, after a delicious lobster lunch at a member’s home in Saco, the weather cleared for a trolley tour of Portland.

 

Portsmouth Day (Wednesday) was blessed by exceptional weather. In the morning we had two great visits. We split the group in half and did the visits simultaneously, then switched places. The Moffatt-Ladd House is a treasure of original furniture and decorative arts, particularly paintings, historic restoration and colonial history. The beautiful gardens are a special treat. Our second visit was to the Portsmouth Athenaeum. a truly unique, historical membership institution. FFNH member Alan Ammann is a member and he led us on the tour. The Athenaeum is an extensive library, featuring historical collections donated by former members. It is a dynamic institution today with rotating art exhibits that are open to the public and a repository of Portsmouth historical original sources that are open to researchers. It's a beautiful building.
Between those morning visits and our afternoon Gundalow cruise, ambassadors had some free time to stroll downtown Portsmouth and get lunch on their own. After lunch, the group reassembled in Market Square for a guided tour of Portsmouth's section of the Black History Trail of New Hampshire. The tour was led by FFNH member Angela Matthews who is a trained guide for that organization. The Gundalow is a local historical boat designed to meet the transportation needs in the shallow rivers around Portsmouth. Our tour was both fun and educational, circling Portsmouth Harbor and enjoying an historical narrative by the crew on a unique vessel - and helping to raise and lower sail!

 

On Thursday, the ambassadors had an architectural history tour of Dover as well as learned the history of the Dover mills.

 

Friday took them to Wolfeboro and a tour of the Wright Museum of World War II. After the museum, they had lunch at the home of former FFNH members and then had time to explore Wolfeboro, the oldest summer resort in America.

 

Saturday morning was another opportunity for ambassadors and home hosts to visit area attractions. The wonderful week wrapped up with a Farewell Party with members bringing traditional New England comfort foods for all to enjoy.

 

Friendship Force is an international nonprofit organization, headquartered in Atlanta, GA, dedicated to the mission of building international understanding and world peace through people-to-people exchanges among clubs. A network of 400 local clubs worldwide participate in annual exchanges which include home stays and rich cultural exchange. The local club, Friendship Force of the New Hampshire Seacoast, began in 1984. Our 70 members participate in many ways, from hosting ambassadors from other clubs or Open World programs to planning events and, sometimes, traveling themselves on an international exchange. Monthly club meetings are largely social affairs, bringing people with similar interests in international exchange together.

For more information visit www.ffnh.org or internationally www.thefriendshipforce.org. The local club meets monthly at 6 p.m. on the 6th of each month. Contact us at ffnh.seacoast1@gmail.com.

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