Francestown Labor Day Festival is set for Sept. 4

  • The Labor Day parade from 2021. COURTESY PHOTO

  • People gather for the white elephant sale in the Horse Sheds in 2021. COURTESY PHOTO

Published: 8/25/2023 2:45:48 PM

The Francestown Improvement & Historical Society (FIHS) will be hosting its annual 105th Labor Day celebration on Sept. 4 with activities and events. 

The day begins with the Francestown Five Road Race. Registration is by the Old Meeting House and opens at 8 a.m. Start times for walkers is at 8:45 a.m., the traditional 5K at 9 a.m. and the Children’s Fun Run at 9:45 a.m. Race details and registration information may be found on the 5K page at francestownhistory.info.

Book sales will be open in the FIHS lodge on Main Street starting at 10 a.m. Also starting at 10 a.m. are plants, baked goods and white elephant (Horse Sheds) and rummage (Town Hall). Juried arts and crafts on the lawn in front of the town offices and on FIHS Park, The Beehive, Heritage Museums and Bixby Memorial Library will also open at 10 a.m.

Carol Barr, who had been the chair of the juried arts show and had been involved with the show for more than 30 years, had planned to retire after last year’s Labor Day celebration. However, artist Laurette Carroll inspired her to bring it back after telling her how much she loves being in Francestown on Labor Day and asked if there was any way some of the artists could be there this year.

“How could I say no to that?” Barr stated.

Therefore, a group of 10 artists agreed on short notice to show their work, including Ian Johnson of Antrim, who is new to the show and will be creating a Francestown bookmark.

Beginning at 11:30 a.m., R.P. Hale will be performing on the harpsichord inside the Old Meeting House. At noon on the Town Common, Wildlife Encounters returns with their live animal show. At 3 p.m., following the parade, the Temple Band will play an assortment of patriotic tunes on the Town Common. Notable local people will be set to get dunked in the dunk tank.

Country Café, located on the lawn between the Heritage Museum and Beehive, will offer roll-up sandwiches, lemonade, and iced tea. Country Kitchen (in the Horse Sheds) will feature burgers and hot dogs, sodas and more. OMH will host its ice cream social from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

One of the oldest traditions of Labor Day, dating back to early celebrations, is the receipt of a tag for a donation to FIHS. Members of the FIHS “Tag Team” will be circulating; also look for Mason jars with flags at various locations around the Town Common.

The parade begins at the intersection of 2nd New Hampshire Turnpike and Route 136. This year’s theme is “When I Grow Up….” This year’s parade judges are Dr. James T. Noble, nurse Lynda Martin-Heaney and retired Air Force Lt. Col. Christian Cheetham, 2023 New Hampshire Teacher of the Year. 

Parking will be available at two Francestown locations, with New Hampshire Party Bus providing shuttle service to the Francestown Town Common. Parking locations will be the Francestown Elementary School and 109 New Boston Road (third house on right after Potash Road heading towards the Francestown Town Center). Bus schedule is 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 3 to 4 p.m.

Raffle tickets will be available for sale at the information booth, located at the front of the Town Common. Tickets are available for $1 each or a book of 12 for $10. The drawing will be held at approximately 3:45 p.m. Pepole may also drop off their completed tickets and payment, cash to check payable to FIHS. Parade winners will also be announced at approximately 3:45 p.m. 

FIHS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and money raised over Labor Day weekend benefits FIHS, helping to sustain programs, operate its museum (The Beehive), preserve the society’s historical collection and support other Francestown groups and activities. 

For information visit francestownhistory.info.


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