The Season of the Scarecrow

  • By Lewis Builders Development
  • 20 Oct, 2017
Travelers, both in and out of state, may identify Route 121 by these Old Stagecoach signs running along the famous Scenic Byway:

However, in the month of October, the 22-mile stretch of highway features another familiar trail marker. From Atkinson to Auburn, the scenic byway is taken over by dozens of creatively crafted scarecrows welcoming the arrival of the autumn season.

The tradition started eight years ago by Jackie Brown, a member of the Chester, NH, Historical Society. She and her husband Don, who was the president of the historical society at the time, conceptualized ideas for interesting ways to raise funds for "preserving and teaching the great history of Chester", according to Brown. The two decided to make scarecrows using limited material and selling them to Chester residents to decorate and display them how they wanted. 

"The first year was really tough," said Brown. "It started as a kit; I painted the faces on burlap sacks and my husband built the wooden bodies. We made about 100 of them, going to door to door to sell them. We spent about an hour talking with people at each house," she laughed. "But we sold them all!" 

According to Brown, the second year they made the scarecrows, they sold out almost immediately. 

Since then, the Browns make about 800 scarecrow skeletons a year. Brown says that the scarecrows have been featured in magazines, newspapers, and television all over New England. The scarecrows were even featured in AAA magazine, which soon lead to the attention of neighborhoods in states as far west as Arizona and Colorado reaching out to the Brown's asking about how to do the fundraiser in their home states. 

"We've had people from South Carolina who were contacting me saying that they were traveling all the way up to New Hampshire just to see our scarecrows," said Brown. 

Locally, the towns Auburn and Hampstead adopted the scarecrow idea last year and this year, Atkinson is jumping on board as well.

"For years, many of us have driven up to Chester to see their annual scarecrow displays," said Jason B. Grosky, chairman of the town of Atkinson selectmen. "It is wonderful to see this tradition make its way down to Atkinson, and the many skills so many of our creative neighbors hold. This is sure to be a well-anticipated annual Atkinson event."

Now, from as far south as Atkinson Resort and Country Club to as far north as Lake Massabesic, magnificent scarecrows are scattered all over Route 121, showcasing the creativity of residents living along the Old Stagecoach Scenic Byway.

If you're looking for things to do this weekend, here are just a few of our favorites along the route:

Atkinson Resort & Country Club – Atkinson  

We start our journey at Atkinson Resort and Country Club. The bride and groom stand happily side-by-side next to the entrance. The resort is a great place to  take in a view of the fantastic foliage from the hill and is also a great place to stop for a bite to eat before your adventure ahead. 

Sawmill Ridge – Atkinson  

We may be biased (ok, we're really  biased) but we've been excited about this project for a while. Don't miss our builders standing proudly at the entrance of the  Sawmill Ridge condominium , helping our ground crew develop this new community! 

Hampstead Commons Plaza - Hampstead

Take a minor detour (less than a block) onto Route 111 over to the Hampstead Commons to find a 'fright' train full of spooky scarecrows just outside Pentucket Bank. 

Hampstead War Memorial – Hampstead  

Not only was this display neat, but it was also touching. Pay respects with the scarecrows in front of the granite memorials at Hampstead Town Hall 

Chester  Village Chiropractic – Chester  

The witch doctor is hard at work at Chester Village Chiropractic. Catch the well-dressed doctor undertake his victims...er, I mean "patients", in front of the office building.

Chester Square – Chester  

You will be so wowed by the scarecrows in Chester Square, you will have to stop to take it all in. From 18th century heroes like Benjamin Franklin to characters in children's stories like Curious George, Chester Square is a great place to explore, take pictures, and enjoy all the neat shops around the area. 

Chester Police Department – Chester  

Drivers beware; stay off your phones! The Chester police department has a cop on watch in toy car outside of the station.

Long Meadow Church – Auburn  

Standing out front of the church, this scarecrow in a Tiny Tots shirt pulls along a red wagon filled with hay, pumpkins, and a miniature scarecrow! 

Auburn Family Dentistry – Auburn  

Located right at the intersection where Route 121 and Hooksett Road combine, Auburn family dentistry displays one of the practice's dentists about to do some work on an undead patient. Be careful brushing the fangs on that vampire! 

What are some of your favorites? Print off our check list  of some of the more familiar scarecrows hanging out around Route 121. You can also create your own check list and share it with us!

My NH Home - by Austin Sorette

By Lewis Builders Development 18 Jan, 2018
To celebrate our 60th birthday, Lewis Builders is looking back at the history behind this great town of Atkinson. We created this short video as a mini history lesson with the help of Atkinson Historical Society 's great book "Atkinson Then and Now". Stay tuned for more of these throughout the year!
By Austin Sorette 28 Dec, 2017
We care about the safety of our hard-working employees during the winter months, so we designed this infographic to help them (and all of us) approach the bitter cold a little smarter this season!
By Lewis Builders Development 12 Dec, 2017

In this edition of " Do You Know Your Home? " we're reviewing the exterior wall materials that improve your new home's comfort and efficiency. If you've visited Sawmill Ridge while on the search for your new home, you may have noticed the ZIP System® green exterior walls covering the new construction prior to siding installation. Lewis Builders trusts the ZIP System to provide superior weather proofing characteristics that will not only protect the structural integrity of your home, but also save you money when it comes to energy costs. If you would like to understand how, lets first go over some terminology. 

Achieving a "Tight House" (Also, What Is a "Tight House"?) 

So, a "tight house" refers to a home with a superior level of insulation that prevents energy from infiltrating through the house. There are several contributing factors to achieving a tight house including a correctly installed foundation and a solid roof but a major factor lies in the exterior wall installation. 

Here in New Hampshire, the weather is unpredictable and always changing. While you might be thinking of the weather that will affect your home over time or during those harsh winters (while you are living in it), weather can play a big part in affecting the very construction of your home. 

While building a house has become much more efficient, it is still a process that takes weeks if not months. Over the course of this time, moisture and weather can affect the overall tightness of a house if not kept at bay. 

Securing the exterior walls and roofing with a moisture barrier in a timely manner can play a big role in achieving a tight house. This is a key component in Lewis Builders construction that also allows our teams to promptly start work on the interior, free from the elements and moisture. 

By Lewis Builders Development 22 Nov, 2017
FINALLY! It took a lot of effort, but we refrained from early holiday planning long enough. It's time to start thinking about Christmas!

Lewis Builders Development has come up with a comprehensive list for activities in the area. Whether you're new in town or you're looking to shake things up with your family's Christmas traditions, there is no shortage of exciting activities to do around the area. Concerts, plays, festivals, tree lightings, and more are all including here. Check it out!
By Lewis Builders Development 10 Nov, 2017

Where do you start when you want to pay tribute to those who have served our country on Veterans Day? You may decide to donate to a charity, but with so many out there, which one would you choose? You could volunteer at an organization, but which would you commit to?

Not sure where to start? At Lewis Builders, the veterans who have served this country are important to us. We have several on our staff who shared their thoughts on how people can show their support on veterans' day. Here's what they had to say:

By Lewis Builders Development 20 Oct, 2017
Travelers, both in and out of state, may identify Route 121 by these Old Stagecoach signs running along the famous Scenic Byway:
By Lewis Builders Development 20 Oct, 2017
Have you seen Charlie Brown and the peanuts on Route 121? How about Tom Brady? Benjamin Franklin? They're all there...well, at least they are scarecrows dressed like them. If you're looking for a fun activity to compliment your relaxing weekend drive, use this checklist to participate in a little interactive sight-seeing along this historic route.
By Lewis Builders Development 06 Oct, 2017

Are you a Sawmill Ridge resident looking for a location to host a special occasion? Want to start a resident yoga or exercise class?   Or are you simply interested in a common area where you can meet and become friendly with your neighbors? The Sawmill Ridge Community Center offers the space for you to do those things and so much more.  

Located in the heart of the condominium community, the Sawmill Ridge Community Center offers unit owners the perfect location to host events of all varieties in either the main function room or perhaps one of the smaller meeting rooms.

"We at Lewis Builders Development are excited to be able to offer this community center as an amenity to the residents of Sawmill Ridge," said Josh Manning, General Manager of Lewis Builders Development. "We know how important community spaces are, so we're happy to have this facility where people can come together, meet their neighbors, celebrate different life events or just relax in a quiet atmosphere."  

The patio area is furnished with two round wrought iron tables overlooking the community garden, perfect for relaxing with a cold drink and soaking in some sunshine spring, summer, and fall. The landscape surrounding the Community Center provides space for backyard games and is great for hosting a barbecue.  

The modern kitchen is designed with generous storage in stylish white cabinetry and complimented with ample quartz countertops. Residents have a convenient pass through to the function area, where the kitchen is equipped with Whirlpool stainless steel appliances including a spacious refrigerator, a 5-burner gas range, dishwasher and microwave complete this working kitchen. The bar top provides a great serving area for a buffet or a casual seating area to entertain guests.

The smaller meeting rooms could be used as office space, a library reading room, fitness center…..the rooms are like a blank canvas; you can make of the space any way you want!  

There are also two handicap-accessible bathrooms and plenty of space in the hall to hang coats and hats.  

The main function area in the community center is spacious and perfect for hosting a larger event.  Dress the room up for a bridal shower, invite your loved ones for a christening reception, or host your spouse’s next birthday party there. The room features, air conditioning, multiple ceiling fans, a gas fireplace, a Vizio 4K smart television, and a Google Home Smart Speaker & Home Assistant. These amenities create an interactive space appropriate for gatherings like watching major sports games, movie nights, baby showers, and family holiday parties.  

"We're excited for the residents to utilize the space because we know amenities like the community center can really bring people together, which is something we've always promoted in the communities we build,” said Manning.  

Browse through our slideshow for a look of the layout of the Community Center. Visit Sawmill Ridge to learn more about the other fantastic amenities available in the condo community, and feel free to stop by our on-site office to learn more. You can also read our page on five great reasons to live at Sawmill Ridge for more information on our development.

By Lewis Builders Development 18 Sep, 2017

When it comes to your heating bills, you don't have to sweat when it comes to high prices. There are ways that homeowners can brace for the changing seasons and still save money on their energy bills. 

These simple tips may small, but over time, they will help garner big savings. From heating to cooling, water heaters to appliances, learn how to save energy in your home and take the heat off of your wallet with these 6 energy saving tips. 

Lighting  

About 12% of your home electricity consumption comes from the use of light bulbs. Imagine the cost savings when you change out those incandescent light bulbs with CFLs or LEDs. By just replacing five of your home's most frequently used lights with energy-efficient ENERGY STAR bulbs, you could save $75 a year in energy costs and much more over the course of the bulb's life. 
 
Cooling  

Air cooling consumes about 13% of your home electricity use, but there are a number of ways you can lower that percentage without feeling the heat! 

Ceiling Fans create a "wind chill" effect, allowing you to raise your thermostat temperature by 4 degrees while still feeling just as cool. Avoid using major appliances during the hours when the temperature is at its highest. Gadgets such as washers, dryers, dishwashers, and hot water heaters all add to the heat in your home while running. Finally, remember that lights generate heat. Use LED's or leave lights off and use natural sunlight as long as you feel comfortable. 

By Lewis Builders Development 08 Sep, 2017

The town of Atkinson is one of New Hampshire's best kept secrets. Hidden amongst the pines along the southern edge of the Granite State, Atkinson boasts quaint, comfortable neighborhoods surrounded by a thriving economy. We at Lewis Builders Development  pride  ourselves in being part of Atkinson's great history—after all, we have called this town our home for almost 60 years!  

Atkinson has it all: location, restaurants, schools, parks, and much more. Whether you're looking for a place to start a family or a relaxing town for your   retirement , you'll find Atkinson offers a little something for everybody. Let's explore this quaint New England town from the Sawmill Swamp to Atkinson Resort and Country Club, and from America's Stonehenge to Collins Park.    

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