New Beginnings or Signs of Spring with Sherry

Apr 05, 2013 No Comments by

The amazing thing about being part of Visit Londonderry is that I never know exactly where a week will lead. Even though I have lived here since the 60’s, grew up at Kendalwood Condos, taught at the High School, and raised my family here, each day I learn something special about our community. One thing is for sure, Londonderry is the best place to Live, Work and Play! Each week I will share with you some of the amazing businesses and things I have learned about Londonderry.

Well first of all I completely forgot to wish everyone a very happy Easter or Passover, too. Even just simply a happy weekend of new beginnings. We were blessed to have our family from CT drive to be with us for this holiday weekend. John’s brother Pat, my sister-in-law Christine and their three great kids. We decided to do something different this year and we ordered a Boar’s Head Ham from Mr. Steer. We had gotten so use to the spiral pre-cut ones from the grocery store that this was rather risky, but again we thought something different out of the usual for us.

Chris promised us this would be the most flavorful, not salty ham we had ever had. All we had to do was slice it up, and he was right! John got out the 30 year old electric knife and in minutes it was sliced and ready to serve. I always wonder if it will work one more Thanksgiving or one more this or that but it always does, somehow. It may be even older than I can remember now, but it works. The sound is scarier than heck, but that’s part of the adventure I guess. We feasted on ham, mashed potatoes and veggies and hot cross buns from our Blackberry Bakery. The owner John is the finest baker in the land if you ask me and his assistant Cindy is irreplaceable!

I had a great plan for Monday, so many places to visit now that the weather was promising to be nicer, but I really didn’t leave the house. I picked up here, found lost eggs around the house and outside and made a few calls, but then came Tuesday.

Something I so love and appreciate about Visit Londonderry is the Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies that Kathy and Steve offer all the new business members in town. It’s just something happy and so nice to be a part of. Tuesday our Ribbon Cutting ceremony was at Home Helpers. Bonnie, the owner recently moved into their new location at 172 Rockingham Road here in Town. The location is perfect, warm and inviting. Bonnie works so hard to help so many families throughout Southern NH with their loved ones of all ages. You probably saw the picture in the Union Leader. Bonnie looks so proud and my husband John and our Chief of Police Bill Hart, gave up their time to be there to celebrate this great business in our town.

I mention many good people here and there along the road, and again if you have any ideas for people I should mention please let me know. But I wondered if many of you know what a great man, a good man, our Chief Hart is.

You know I love telling you about people around us that go above and beyond and Bill Hart is one of those people. He always has been, but he’s never been one to boast or brag and you may not be aware of all the good he does, yes behind the scenes. I often think we are very blessed that he has stayed devoted to Londonderry all these years.

Chief Hart probably has no idea of when he and I first met. Our Chief was a young prosecutor in town. A family member of mine had made a mistake that was rather embarrassing for everyone. Dear God you may not believe this, but one minute everything was great and the next minute we were in the Derry Court House. Life can change quickly, and yes good people do make mistakes. To make a long teary memory short, the prosecutor Bill Heart handled this tough situation with compassion, fairness, and yes even respect. The law is the law, but he made a very tough, sad situation bearable and did not judge.

I will never forget him because of that story, and it’s those stories, moments in time that test the character of who we really are. I remember thinking then “he is a good man, in a tough job”. My family was grateful, and we continued to think that throughout the years. We are blessed in Londonderry that he has stayed with us and I believe always has the town of Londonderry’s best interest at “heart”. Hey that’s kind of funny, Chief Hart and Heart. But anyway that’s how I feel and I think we need to celebrate these good people more!

Oh back to the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, they are just the nicest things; everyone is happy and we just stand together, Tuesday in the cold unfortunately, to show support and offer Congratulations. I want to thank Bonnie too, because she took the time to welcome Visit Londonderry on her Sign that is out in front of her business on Rockingham Road. That made me feel really good when I drove past, just so nice to see. Something Happy!

Now this was a strange Sherry moment, I was just about to leave the parking lot to head to another appointment. Suddenly I noticed the sign that said Whittemore Insurance. “Wait a minute,” I thought, “I know that name.” I decided to pull back into the parking spot and go into say hello! I walked into this very nice office that is located right next to Home Helpers. Two very nice ladies asked how they could help me. I started to tell them about being next door at Bonnie’s and a little about Visit Londonderry. Suddenly one of them said, “Let me get Steve.”

Steve Hicks came out to greet me even though I didn’t even have an appointment. He was very interested in Visit Londonderry and I was very interested in learning more about Whittemore Insurance. Steve explained to me that his wife Tracy’s family had started the company many years ago. You might remember that they used to be located in what I still call old Londonderry many years ago. I think Steve said that was around 1978 when I would have been graduating from Pinkerton Academy! The company started though in 1928! They handle all types of personal and business insurance, home, auto, you name it they can probably help you with it. So personable and caring too, if you need insurance know they are there.

Now this has had me baffled all week. We all have been getting these almost poster sized advertisements in the mail, it seems especially the last few months. You know what I mean, wish I had a picture to show you, but every time I try to send one to Jackie I never get it right! Anyway, they are huge, wait I will measure it right now. Ok they are 14 x 11! Dear God, poster quality paper, ink over ink, pictures galore! For a while the only one we ever got here was one for Checkmate Pizza. Now I wish I could tell you it made us try the pizza, but it hasn’t yet. Yet is the key. John is always fascinated by these things, but of course he’s a business guy really.

This one was fun to get, and I will say I did keep meaning to go in, but just haven’t. We seem to go through fades with our take out. Lately it’s been Ron’s Chinese at the Super Wok! I think 3 times in the last couple weeks. Last night even we had it again! Bart treated us to a feast and it was beyond delicious. Low Mein Noodles, Salt and Pepper Chix wings and Egg foo young to die for really! I’m sure Pizza will come back to us in a couple weeks. Anyway, it was fun getting just the one Huge, oversized poster in the mail but Wednesday we got 4! Four from all different local places! Even other pizza places! Dear God to many choices! One was fun, 4 is a bore! Hey that rhymes!

You must be wondering what the heck is her point, but because Checkmate Pizza was the first we had received initially, this one did stick in our mind. It’s gotten to the point that I feel like that beautiful face on the front, no maybe it’s the backside, is one of my friends. If this man does not seem happy, grateful and there to introduce you to the best pizza, I don’t know who is! Just for the heck of it I had to “check” out the story behind the poster.

What a great story it is, a really nice man explained to me that the owner Jamie is as great as his picture! They are there to serve us with homemade dough, I like that they call it handmade dough, fresh cheese and all the extra’s. Jamie is a young, hardworking man. He has our store here in town, one in Concord and this is the exciting thing, today, Friday he is opening his third business in Salem! I woke up thinking about this just a few minutes ago, around 5:00ish and thought to myself, why don’t John and I head down there this weekend to show our support for a local business in a different way. Steve and Kathy’s vision for Visit Londonderry is to Live Work and Play right in our Derry/Londonderry Area, but we can step out and show our support for our local businesses as they grow and expand, too. Kind of fun really!

Now I really didn’t like getting four of these huge things in our mail, seemed like such a waste really, but I will tell you this one, we will be going into meet Jamie, try that delicious looking and sounding pizza and to thank him too for staying in Londonderry with all of us. Another thing I have learned from being the voice for Visit Londonderry is it’s so hard on these businesses of every size trying to get their story out there to let you know they are here.

You’d be shocked, as I have been at how much they are asked to spend endlessly on advertising every day! $2,000 here, $5,000 there and often it is for a one shot deal! How scary is that! I had no idea, I know they make a profit but so often what goes out is much more than what’s coming in! So often when I walk into a business to spread the word about Visit Londonderry, there might be two other people waiting behind me to interrupt their day. Remember I’ve said this before almost every business owner I have met, under pressure and the clock, is always friendly and willing to listen. What a pain that has to be throughout their day, but I appreciate their time and you know love hearing and sharing their stories.

This is hard to believe, I might be done With My on the Road with Sherry for this week! It’s only 7:30, hey maybe I’m getting better at this. Please don’t hesitate to let me know who I should visit next week. I guess the only thing I still wanted to toss into the mix here was last night we also watched the movie Les Miserables. Of course most everyone knows this one and many of us have seen it in different forms many times. It was truly beautiful, I love that it reminds us to look into human nature, to be forgiving no matter how much something hurts and to just do good for goodness sake! It also reminded me that usually people do things for a reason, one you may know or one that may never be revealed. I love too that it shows something I feel more and more everyday as I become older and maybe a little wiser. Almost every path you cross in this life you will visit again. That person you were a little sharp with yesterday, they may remember you 5 years from now when you need their help. So again, look for the best in everyone, don’t dwell on the little parts we don’t like about each other and again just do good for goodness sakes!

I think that’s it, I promise this time! I am so grateful you are there.

Sherry

Oh I should have known my Road never ends this early on a Friday, I also wanted to tell you about the most precious thing I learned about all week. I stopped by to visit Pastor Ken and Lee of the Orchard Christian Church. First I have never been into the Robie building, I think that’s the name. Simply Amazing! You can still feel the warmth, love, oh and even horses that shared that spot for hundreds of years. The Orchard Christian offices are located in what once was the barn in years past.

So breathtaking, but when I first walked in I saw the most beautiful apple tree with all of these beautifully made paper apples on it. Lee explained to me that on each apple there is an item that our new church in town will need to begin services in July. One apple said “1 chair – $45”, one a table, the cutest were the ones for toys and things like baby pagers for the children’s area. Stop in and grab an apple, you don’t have to be a member of the church, we can still help out and be a part of something bigger and lasting all together.

One more thing. Don’t forget this is the weekend that House of the Samurai is hosting the 32nd ShidokanUSA Traditional Invitational Karate Tournament in the High School gym this Saturday. This will be an opportunity to see competitors from the age of 4 and up. Richie Bernard, the owner of House of Samurai, a 10th Degree Black Belt, will be donating all net proceeds to our Londonderry Rotary Club. How great is that?

On the Road with Sherry

About the author

Sherry has lived in Londonderry since the 1960's. Her mother was one of the first employees at Mr. Steer Meats. Sherry taught at the Londonderry High School for a number of years and spearheaded the first Career Education Class at the school. She has two daughters of her own with her husband John.
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