Blog : December 2014

Gundalow Holiday Sale this Weekend!

By Madalyn | Dec 4, 2014 | in

This weekend only The Gundalow Company is having an amazing Holiday Gift Shop Sale! December 6 and 7, patrons receive up to 40% off their high quality merchandise and products. Also, spend $25 or more at their store and receive a free sail pass for 2015! Or purchase two sailing passes and receive the third pass free!

The Gundalow Company is dedicated to protecting the Piscataqua regions maritime heritage and environment through education and action. The Gift Shop is located at 60 Marcy St., next to Strawbery Banke in Portsmouth.

Blue Ocean Society Adopt-a-Beach Program Gains Members

By Anna | Dec 4, 2014 | in

New Hampshire may have the smallest coastline in the United States, but unfortunately that isn't always reflected in the amount of marine debris found along its beaches. In 2013, Blue Ocean Society and its volunteers collected over 12,000 pounds of debris from southern Maine, New Hampshire, and northern Massachusetts. As part of their marine conservation efforts, Blue Ocean Society for Marine Conservation organizes an adopt-a-beach program in New Hampshire where organizations can adopt a beach and organize their own monthly cleanups.

Recently two new organizations joined the list of adopt-a-beach groups to co-adopt the beach known as "Sunken Forest" or "Drowned Forest" at Odiorne Point. The area was named because at low tide you can still see the remains of trees that are several thousand years old. Southern New Hampshire University--Portsmouth and Peer Leaders--a group of engaged high school students from Portsmouth High School are joining together to ensure that this section of beach remains clean for both the people and animals that call this place home.

Coca Cola of Northern New England Teams Up With Local, Sustainable Restaurants

By Katie | Dec 4, 2014 | in

When the Green Alliance signed on Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England (CCNNE) as a Business Partner this past summer, we weren't sure what to expect. It would be a hard sell, we figured, to convince our other 100 green businesses and 4,000 individual members that CCNNE fit the part. From our first meeting with them, we were sold. The company's sustainable efforts are tremendous. In-depth sustainability analysis of their own business has allowed CCNNE to determine different ways they can become more sustainable, while helping their communities do the same. For example, they boast a 93% recycling diversion rate and work closely with Hampton's Foss Manufacturing to process its recycled bottles and turn it into usable material.

Through December 31, CCNNE is teaming up with fellow Green Alliance Businesses, 900 Degrees and UNH Dairy Bar to urge folks to choose small, eco-friendly businesses. At both the Manchester and Epping location of 900 Degrees Neapolitan Pizzeria, as well as Durham's UNH Dairy Bar, CCNNE will give free Honest Tea to each Green Alliance member who visits these restaurants and shows their GA membership card. That means, in addition to receiving 10% off all items, just by showing a their card, each visitor will receive a complimentary Honest Tea to take with them after the meal. 

Third Stone Farm is Open for Their Last Weekend of the Season

By Katelyn | Dec 4, 2014 | in

Of all the wonderful Christmas traditions, there is nothing quite like selecting and cutting your own tree as a family. The fresh air, the spicy smell of the needles, the persuasive arguments made by each family member to prove why their selection is best... those special moments leading up to Christmas are what make long-lasting memories. Across New England, families and friends flock to local Christmas tree farms each year to uphold the annual tradition of traipsing through the snow and picking out the perfect tree. With only a few short weeks left before Christmas, this weekend the last chance to get your family's perfect and organic tree at Third Stone Farm in Barnstead, NH.

"Since I took over the farm a few years ago, I have not used any chemicals or fertilizers so all of my trees are 100% organic. And the greatest thing is that the previous owners also didn't use any chemicals, so we are continuing that natural tradition. It does take a couple of years to get the federal organic certification and we are in the process of obtaining that," says Third Stone Farm co-owner, Tim Gaudreau. 

Third Stone Farm will be open to the public for their final weekend of the season this Saturday and Sunday, where Christmas tree hunters will be able to wander through their farm and find the picture-perfect tree. Third Stone Farm spans 22 acres with thousands of Christmas trees of all different sizes, and this year they have a large quantity of trees that are the ideal size for homes and are ready to be harvested. The farm specializes in Balsam Fir, Canaan Fir, Fraser Fir, and Blue Spruce varieties, so they is something out there to satisfy every family’s different taste in Christmas trees!

Big Savings this Holiday Season at Prelude

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

Green Alliance members are used to getting 10% off beautiful, handcrafted jewelry at Prelude, but ask anyone and you’ll learn that the store has much more to offer. That is why Prelude is giving Green Alliance members 10% off all in store items until Dec. 31! It’s a great chance to get some savings on holiday shopping while supporting an environmentally and socially responsible local business.

Celebrating its 30th year this spring, this proud GA partner is a long-time supporter of sustainable ideas and practices such as purchasing goods locally, offering all-natural and organic products, buying fair-trade, and more.

Prelude’s wide variety of offerings creates a shopping experience that all members of the family can enjoy.

The Green Alliance Welcomes RiverWoods at Exeter as Our Latest Business Partner

By Craig | Dec 3, 2014 | in

We are pleased to welcome RiverWoods, a sustainable retirement community located in Exeter, as our newest Business Partner! RiverWoods is a nationally accredited charitable non-profit Continuing Care Retirement Community with three separate campuses throughout New England. Far from the stereotypical retirement community, RiverWoods is changing the way residents interact with the surrounding neighborhood and its own campus. Different housing options include 400 apartments and cottages, with duplicated amenities, on 200 beautiful wooded acres.

RiverWoods is not only unique in their caliber of care, but in their commitment to sustainability as well. The community is ahead of the green curve in its industry and rapidly making sustainable changes to their operations, from an automated heating system and LED and CFL light fixtures, to sourcing local food for their top-notch menu, to a solar thermal system to help heat its hot water and pools. The campus even has a group of environmental activists, who are instrumental in making further changes within RiverWoods and beyond. They hold meetings and work with the board of directors to ensure the community is moving forward with sustainable options.

Special Holiday Discounts!

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

The holiday season often means holiday deals. That is why Green Alliance likes to check in with its Business Partners to get the scoop on great deals for our members for the month of December. There are more to come but here are some of the specials we have now for Green Alliance members:

Green Earth Baby Works, Riverworks Printing, 900 Degrees Pizzeria, Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Northern New England and Prelude are all offering great deals to GA holiday shoppers. Savings on products ranging from wallshots to body lotions are all up for grabs for Green Alliance members!

Gift Giving ROI: It Pays to Think Outside the (Holiday) Box by Shopping Local and Green

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

By Kristyn Lak Miller

PORTSMOUTH — Giving a gift is an investment in a relationship, buying that gift locally is an investment in community, and making sure it’s a green gift is an investment in the future.

“Supporting local, green businesses offers tremendous ROI,” says Sarah Brown, Director of Green Alliance. According to a Civic Economics study, independent retailers return 52-percent of revenue to the local economy compared to 14-percent for big-box retailers; in addition, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance says local stores help sustain a vibrant, walkable town center—as opposed to big-box retailers that often reside on the edge of town—and are essential to reducing sprawl, automobile use, habitat loss, and air and water pollution.

“Beyond economic and environmental benefits, shopping local cultivates community connections,” says Brown. “There’s really nothing like a shopkeeper greeting you by name, asking about your family, being more than just a fleeting face at the cash register.”

Come Celebrate the Holidays with Us!

By Craig | Dec 3, 2014 | in

The Green Alliance sure knows how to throw a party. If you were able to attend any of this year's festivities, from the Spring Music Bash to the sold-out Isles of Shoals Summer Party Cruise, the GA Community has made all events a truly special experience. And with the holiday season now in full-swing, we expect the Holiday Bash to be the best yet!

Join us on December 23 from 5:30 - 8 p.m. at long-time Green Alliance Business Partner, the Portsmouth Brewery, which has graciously offered to host this year's party for a second year in a row. The Brewery will open the La Ponza Lounge to the Green Alliance community and includes appetizers, great beer (the first one is on us, see more about that below), and the most spirited company you can find on the seacoast. The event is free for Green Alliance members and Business Partners.

While the event only runs until 8 p.m., the Brewery is happy to have folks stay longer! A full menu is available upstairs, and the kitchen offers delicious food from its varied menu until 11 p.m.

If you have been meaning to join the Green Alliance, there is no better time than now. Not only will you have the opportunity to come to the Green Alliance Holiday Party, but you have a year of discounts at green businesses and invitation to all 2015 member-only events.

RSVP to save your spot today!

Great Savings this Holiday Season!

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

Can’t figure out what to get the person that has everything? Share the gift of green this holiday season by giving a Green Alliance Card. Green Alliance membership grants discounts to over 100 local sustainable businesses as well as up to date info on the latest local green news and events. Gifting the membership is $35 but comes with a $50 Green Maids gift card to give as a gift!

The holidays may be a season of giving, but why not enjoy a little something for yourself? For the next month make sure to feel good about shopping for yourself by purchasing a Green Alliance membership for only $25 (regularly $35). Your Green Card will be your greatest shopping buddy this holiday season, offering discounts that will help get your holiday shopping done with local businesses on a budget.

Green Alliance membership enters you in to a community of environmentally minded individuals interested in environmentally responsibility (and great savings of course!). You can also get involved with some of the community work being done by Green Alliance, like our food donation.

Local Organizations Thrive Despite Tough Economic Times

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

By Craig Robert Brown

Six years ago, the Green Alliance was little more than a three-business organization run out of a one-couch, one-desk Kittery living room.

Fast forward to the present unsually warm, fall day and its founder can barely find the time to sit down and answer a few emails before spiriting herself away to yet another event.

Like business itself, the Green Alliance office – now located on the third floor of downtown Portsmouth’s historic Franklin Block building – is teeming, with the company’s four employees and throng of college volunteers scrambling to piece together the organization’s monthly newsletter, website, and prolific, daily-updated blog.

Sarah Brown, the organization’s founder and director, can’t help but be struck by how far her little organization-that-could has come.

“It seems like yesterday when this all started, and I barely had a clue of where we were going, much less who we were as an organization,” quips Brown. “Now we’re operating and moving confidently, we have an incredible, dedicated staff… It’s an amazing community I’m grateful every day just to be a part of.”

Green Earth Baby Works Holiday Discount!

By Katie | Dec 3, 2014 | in

Let's face it; holiday shopping can be daunting. You worry about getting a good deal on the perfect gift for everyone on your list. We're here to help guide you, to get the perfect gift and feel good about your purchase. 

A few of our Green Businesses are stepping up their discounts this season. Meaning, you'll be getting even better deals just by using your Green Card with each purchase! Better yet, you'll know you're supporting the local business owners who run these certified sustainable companies. 

To kick off the discounts, Green Earth Baby Works is extending their Black Friday-Cyber Monday discount through the end of the month for GA Members only! Through December 31, GA Members can score 5% off of 12 weeks of cloth diaper service, 10% off of 26 weeks, and 15% off of 52 weeks!

Green Collar Careers: Cornerstone Tree Care Owner Micum Davis

By Patrick Haigis | Dec 3, 2014 | in

By Anna Murphy

Some equate Micum Davis, owner of Cornerstone Tree Care, to the Lorax. Much like Dr. Suess’s lovable character, Davis always does what is best for the environment and the trees with which he works. At 38, Davis has already amassed a wealth of knowledge in the proper techniques to service trees and maintain their long-term health.

Because every tree has a unique form, Davis studies their basic structure before making his first move. From limbs interfering with power lines, trees blocking roads and walkways to injuries and property damage, trees can cause serious and life-threatening problems. Pruning eliminates existing hazards while preemptive work – removing dead or weak limbs - can help prevent damage during storms. In order to protect the trees from damage during pruning, Davis and his employees use a system of rope knots and belays to scale the trees without damaging the bark or using spikes in what he refers to as an "aerial circus act."

IT Recycling Company Finds Success at Portsmouth eCycling Event

By Craig | Dec 3, 2014 | in

On September 29, MetalWave, Inc., an IT recycling company located in Amesbury, Mass., partnered with the Green Alliance, QA Cafe, Axis Business Solutions and Alpha Loft for a multi-town eCycling event at the QA Cafe office's parking lot in Portsmouth. The event was designed to provide a space for businesses and individuals to safely recycle their old or broken IT equipment and personal computing devices such as laptops, tablets and smart-phones.

The event proved a success as residents and businesses brought large quantities of recyclable materials of unwanted office and home IT products. After the event, each item was cataloged and disseminated throughout at the MetalWave facility for refurbishment, data erasing or destruction. As part of the recycling process, MetalWave generates a report card for the total number of items received at events such as the collaboration with QA Cafe.

Known as a Certificate of Recycling, the document breaks down how much product was received at the event in each category. For example, MetalWave received 85 scrapped printers, seven laptops, eight AC adaptors, nine stereos and VCRs and varying amounts of other electronic devices and wired items.

The certificate for the amount of recycled material is one of three offered by MetalWave, according to Jim Jubb, MetalWave's Business Development Manager. Jubb says that the Recycling Certificate is the most common and is made available to all customers. Other documents include a certificate for data destruction, data security and data privacy.

Food Drive Bin at Green Alliance

By Katie | Dec 2, 2014 | in

As a community-centric organization, we strive to make our community a pleasant, safe, happy, and green place for all to enjoy. This community encompasses a lot of people, from all walks of life. Some of whom are less fortunate, and could really use some generosity this holiday season.

We know our GA community is full of giving, caring individuals. That is why the GA is setting up a food donation bin at our headquarters in downtown Portsmouth. All food donations will go to Footprints Food Pantry in Kittery, which serves families without the financial means to provide meals and necessary goods to their family on a consistent basis. 

Items that are always in high demand at Footprints include: peanut butter, canned vegetables and fruit, pasta, pasta sauce, macaroni and cheese, cereal (low sugar please!), oatmeal, canned tuna fish, dog and cat food, first aid supplies, and more. A bin will be set up in GA headquarters at 75 Congress St., Suite 304 in downtown Portsmouth from December 2 to December 23. We will also be exchanging a drink ticket (good for one free beer) at our December 23 Holiday Party at the Portsmouth Brewery (5:30 - 8 p.m.; RSVP to now)!