"> en-us Nashua girl takes state bee title for the second time Winning the New Hampshire Union Leader Spelling Bee is now a matter of course for Nashua's Arushi Kalpande, who confidently outspelled hundreds of other kids to repeat as state champion during Saturday's state-level spelling bee. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 18:07:00 EST Early summer rental benefit as winter takes its toll This brutal winter got you down? Looking to escape? Well, many blizzard-battered New Englanders already have booked rental lodging hot spots around New Hampshire this summer, especially if their patch of sunshine is on the waterfront. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 18:04:00 EST Susan Dromey's Down to Earth The winter of our fashion faux pas So, while it's been a Fifty Shades of Flannel kind of winter, soon enough, spring will arrive. Really. And it's going to be a thriller, I can feel it. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 18:00:00 EST Deb Baker's The Mindful Reader 'The Half Brother' complex, thoughtful Holly LeCraw's The Half Brother is an atmospheric novel, set in a quintessential small New England town where shabby but genteel Abbott School is located. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 18:00:00 EST Forest Journal Winners losers Keeping score of wildlife in winter It's officially March. Perhaps Nature's snow-gun show will cut us a break? Unless the old In like a lion clich holds true? Out like a lamb may not be much better. I've attended a malpresentation birth of one lamb arriving in March in a snowstorm with legs bent akimbo. Either way, March can be as fitful and unpredictable as winter itself. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 18:00:00 EST Dick Pinney's Guidelines Ice fishing great under right conditions AAHH, this is the time of year when it's really fun and often a challenge to go ice fishing. Sat, 28 Feb 2015 17:58:00 EST Stacey Cole's Nature Talks Thrush sighting brings rush of excitement The following column was printed in the Union Leader on Saturday, Jan. 31, 1987. Written by Stacey Cole, shown in the photo, the column heading was 'Nature Talks from Down on the Farm.' Fri, 27 Feb 2015 19:04:00 EST Win tickets to see Pat Benetar and Neil Giraldo Enter to win a pair of tickets to see Black Label Society on May 1, 2015 at the Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom. Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:47:00 EST Win tickets to see Black Label Society Enter to win a pair of tickets to see Black Label Society on April 4, 2015 at the Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom. Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:30:00 EST Last Week's Rare Bird Alert This is New Hampshire Audubon's Rare Bird Alert for Monday, Feb. 23, 2015. Fri, 27 Feb 2015 20:24:00 EST Skiing for a good cause is easy in the Granite State Many Granite State ski area host large events to benefit other organizations and to offer opportunities to everyone on the slopes such as Special Olympics, BodeFest and the Mountain Dew Vertical Challenge, Thu, 26 Feb 2015 20:33:00 EST Discount on tickets to Strengthening Families Summit ends Sunday State and national child and family experts will join forces to explore the social and emotional needs of children during a Strengthening Families Summit on Monday, March 30, at the Grappone Conference Center. Thu, 26 Feb 2015 20:32:00 EST Magic Foods opens second Canoe restaurant in Bedford Magic Foods Restaurant Group is opening a second location of its popular Canoe Restaurant and Tavern today in Bedford, the company's fourth restaurant in New Hampshire. Thu, 26 Feb 2015 18:43:00 EST 'Champions on Ice' lacing up in NH PORTSMOUTH 8212 Strawbery Banke Museum is moving forward with plans for an ice show featuring international skating champions on Saturday, March 7, following an approval last week by the Zoning Board of Appeals of an extension to the season for the Labrie Family Skate at Puddle Dock Pond outdoor ice skating rink. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:06:00 EST Nashua's Rivier University hosts 70-year-old NH artist's first showing Even as scores of multi-media abstract works began amassing in his dining room, self-taught Nashua artist Leo Balzano found himself grappling with two questions Were these creative explorations any good, and how did he create some of them in the first place? Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:05:00 EST 'Art From the Attic' and 'Transitions' at New Hampshire Art Association In conjunction with Art Around Town, a reception will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 6. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:03:00 EST Jayson Twombly's needlework exhibit in Laconia In an exhibit titled 'My Little Friends,' Twombly uses precise stitches and vibrant color to create pixellated versions of the human face. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:02:00 EST Oil painter James M. O'Brien artist of the month at Exeter Fine Crafts The New Hampshire native uses energetic brushstrokes that he wipes away and builds upon. After creating the initial skeletal structure, which at times appears chaotic, he continues developing layers of color. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:02:00 EST Stained glass artist Susanna Ries and oil painter John Sweeney present 'Flying Colors' Flocking together for a bird-themed exhibit, stained glass artist Susanna Ries and oil painter John Sweeney present 'Flying Colors' at East Colony Fine Art, 55 S. Commercial St., Manchester, through Saturday, March 28. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 21:57:00 EST 'Ballad Lives' in Derry show Balladeer and former Portsmouth Poet Laureate John Perrault follows the evolution of the traditional ballad Wed, 25 Feb 2015 21:55:00 EST Granite State launches literary hall of fame New Hampshire now has its own Literary Hall of Fame, and an exhibit to honor the state's literary heritage, thanks to a new collaboration between the New Hampshire Writers Project and Southern New Hampshire University. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 23:31:00 EST Girls Guns and Glory pay tribute to Hank Williams Girls Guns and Glory, whose latest release is a live album from its Hank Williams tribute shows of recent years, will play The Music Hall Loft, 131 Congress St., Portsmouth, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 4. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:06:00 EST Queen heyday recreated in Concord As recognizable as classic Queen hits 8212 the operatic-pop anthem 'Bohemian Rhapsody', the defiant power ballad 'We Are the Champions' and the bitter, driving beats of 'Another One Bites the Dust' 8212 is the flamboyant frontman who set the stage for the pop-culture favorites. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:00:00 EST Comedy Central's Daniel Tosh bringing two shows to Capitol Center Daniel Tosh, whose notoriously irreverent commentary on Comedy Central's 'Tosh.O' skewers internet pop culture from the absolutely absurd to the ingenious, is headed to the Capitol Center for the Arts for two shows Sunday, June 14. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 21:56:00 EST Casual attire encouraged at Seacoast pajama party The Children's Museum of New Hampshire, 6 Washington St., will host a Pajama Day on Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 21:55:00 EST Zany theater at Stockbridge in Derry DERRY 8212 Gambling on some levity and audience input during a bleak winter, Theatre Kapow presents 'Russian RouletteParisian Poker' this weekend at the Stockbridge Theatre at Pinkerton Academy. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 21:54:00 EST Ski areas say 2015 has produced great conditions and good attendance Cold and snow-filled, the winter of 2015 has given the state's alpine and cross-country ski resorts great conditions if not an always uniform economic boost. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 17:14:00 EST Anat Cohen Quartet to bring grooves to UNH's arts center on Monday DURHAM - The Anat Cohen Quartet will play the Paul Creative Arts Center at 8 p.m. Monday, March 2, at the University of New Hampshire.Cohen, born in Tel Aviv, Israel, began clarinet studies at 12, playing jazz on the instrument for the first time in the Jaffa Conservatory's Dixieland band. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:13:00 EST For Ellen Bryan Voigt, magic of poetry hinges on musicality as much as words By ROB LEVEYSpecial to the Union LeaderThere's a transcendent quality of poetry that isn't limited to the writing process.For Ellen Bryant Voigt, who will give a reading of her work at the Silver Center for the Arts in Plymouth tonight as part of the Eagle Pond Authors series, x201ca poem is not just... Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:12:00 EST No heading In her multidimensional portrait project, Tanja Hollander of Auburn, Maine, literally steps into the living rooms of her 600 and growing Facebook friends, traveling the world on a modern odyssey to visit and photograph all of them. Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:12:00 EST Magician Norman Ng straight forward about life of illusion By EMILY REILYSpecial to the Union LeaderThe first trick magician Norman Ng learned when he was 8 literally got the ball rolling for his career.x201cFirst trick I saw was at a magic store in my hometown, Portland, Maine,x201d he said. x201cThe magician who owned the shop did this amazing thing where he made a... Wed, 25 Feb 2015 22:10:00 EST Merit Badge College helps Scouts earn their way to Eagle rank Area Boy Scouts had the opportunity to work on merit badges at the Merit Badge College, hosted by the Daniel Webster Council which serves Southern New Hampshire. The three-week program helps scouts efficiently earn merit badges in classroom settings. Tue, 24 Feb 2015 18:36:00 EST Our Gourmet Worth the trip out into the elements A warm welcome at Cotton Tue, 24 Feb 2015 17:38:00 EST From the frying pan into 'Hell's Kitchen' Michael Dussault of Nashua faces the most intense culinary classroom in season 14 of 'Hell's Kitchen' premiering March 3 on FOX. Tue, 24 Feb 2015 17:38:00 EST Tasting Notes with Jim Beauregard Happily, Angry Orchard gets Hop'n Mad Remember the old saying, 'An apple a day keeps the doctor away?' It wasn't about apples. It was about drinks made from apples, to be sure, which the French have been making from time immemorial. Tue, 24 Feb 2015 17:36:00 EST This tropical staple shines in sweet or savory dishes Plantains Bananas' homely cousins sure know how to cook Tue, 24 Feb 2015 17:36:00 EST