If you thought we here at the GA would be in summer vacation mode, think again! Fresh off our annual Summer Cruise aboard the Thomas Laighton, we're already gearing up for the launch of our Green Families Club on July 25th! Read more about our ambitious new venture in our first story below!
In the meantime, like the rain-fed crops throughout the region, the summer months find the GA ever sprouting, with new Business Partners -- including Conservation Law Foundation, Great Bay Stewards, Brixham Montessori, and GaiaClean -- along with droves of new consumer members joining the fray! But as exciting as our growth is, we know we couldn't have done it without our members. Whether you're a Seacoast resident who frequents our many Business Partners, a New England native, or just someone who loves green, we can't thank you enough for your support -- from reading our newsletters to patronizing our businesses to participating in the many GA-sponsored events.
Normally we woudn't recommend jumping on the bandwagon, but we're confident that ours is a bandwagon you won't feel ashamed to hop aboard! So join us today, and help us continue our green march forward!
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Green Families Club set to launch July 25th!
The Green Alliance (GA) was launched in 2009 with what seemed at the time to be a clear-cut goal: to bring green-minded businesses and consumers together, thereby helping prove the efficacy of sustainable products and services while supporting the local economy. To date, that overarching mission has helped the GA grow from a handful of local businesses into a union of over 100 companies.
Propelled by this green critical mass, the Portsmouth organization is poised to launch its latest initiative – the Green Families Club (GFC) – on July 25th with a celebration and picnic that is free and open to the public. Designed to serve as a clearinghouse for consumer education and family-friendly local events, the GFC will allow area families an opportunity to meet and network with like-minded folks who share the common goal of going green, while saving a little at the same time.
The club is the brainchild of GA Director Sarah Brown and Marketing Director Bridget Sprague, who – during an internal meeting late last year – noticed a tie binding many of the organization’s over 3,000 consumer members.
“After we started looking at who our members were a little more closely, we realized that a lot of them were moms and dads – people who had a very real vested interest in safer, greener, more local products and services,” recalls Brown. “We realized pretty quickly that bringing families together – helping them learn from one another – would be a great way to help bring more attention to these businesses.”
Find out more about what this new Green Families Club is all about on July 25th from 4pm-7pm at Sagamore Hampton Golf Center located on Rt. 1 just past the Rye border in North Hampton. The event will feature over 20 interactive and sustainable booths and activities for families from face painting, to kids yoga, to free mini golf, a sea creature touch tank and even a Native American Pow Wow dance. The celebration is free and open to the public.....Read more here!
The first 30 people to join the Green Families Club at our July 25th event will receive a FREE copy of Lindsay Carmichael's Greening Your Family! Click here to find out more!
Star Island embraces the sun
For a piece of sea-bound land temporarily called home just a few months out of the year, Star Island would seem an unlikely place for “green” to take permanent hold – why with a lone, albeit beautiful hotel, and a smattering of centuries old houses and cottages to its name.
Lately, however, the second largest – and most frequented – of New Hampshire’s Isles of Shoals has sought to prove that improved amenities and sustainability-minded practices need not be mutually exclusive.
Earlier this month the Star Island Family Conference and Retreat Center officially put online the island’s alternative energy cornerstone, in the form of a solar hot water system for the village’s 19th century cottage.
For over a century, cottage guests had to make do by carrying hot water in pitchers to the basins in their rooms. Now, residents will be able to enjoy a warm respite from elements that – even in July and August – don’t always feel summer-like.
Spearheading the installation was Jack Farrell, the Island Facilities Superintendent. Farrell in turn reached out to Jack Bingham, owner of the Seacoast Energy Alternatives (SEA) Solar Store in Dover, to secure the actual system......Read more in our blog by clicking here!
Join the GA and receive $250 off a solar hot water or solar PV system -- as well as 10% on all in-store items under $500 -- from SEA Solar Store! Click here to learn more!
Newmarket Mills a monument to green growth
Newmarket Mills may be similar to countless other New England development projects in that it offers more than 50,000 square feet of commercial space to local businesses and will eventually feature 112 apartments. But what distinguishes this project is the greenest of green concepts —recycling old buildings; that is, the complete repurposing of a structure in a 21st century makeover.
“The vision originally comes from builder Eric Chinburg’s love of old mill buildings and that something which is beautiful, but falling apart, can be given a new life,” says Jen Chinburg, Newmarket Mills’ marketing director. “The Newmarket Mill buildings were starting to crumble and were in a state of decay. We had an opportunity to save something that’s part of the history and legacy of New Hampshire.”
Founded in 1987 by UNH graduate Eric Chinburg, Chinburg Builders has since grown to become one of the Seacoast’s most trusted and recognizable building companies in residential and commercial construction, as well as general contracting. Great Mills Management is Chinburg’s own affiliated property management company. Along the way, the company has embraced a decidedly green ethos and progressive development philosophy oriented to the region’s unique history and local heritage.... read more here!
By joining the GA, Green Card holders receive $250 toward any of Chinburg's green upgrade options, including flooring, lighting, low or no-VOC paints, Richlite or concrete countertops, or an on-demand hot water system! Click here!
Checkmate offers local payroll alternative
A majority of businesses probably don’t pay much mind to their payroll services – once set up, it’s largely out of sight, out of mind. That is, of course, until a problem occurs; when those tasked with dealing with a large, national payroll provider get lost amidst the myriad 1-800 numbers and endless bureaucracy.
But Steve Robinson, President and Founder of Checkmate Workforce Management Solutions, understood enough about the needs of the Granite State’s smaller employers to know there had to be a better way.
In 1994, Robinson – a Certified Public Accountant by trade – recalibrated his accounting firm and formed Checkmate, with the aim of providing a better, more responsive payroll services company for small and mid-sized businesses. In starting Checkmate, Steve sought to create a business partner for his clients and to create a culture of community engagement for his staff.
Nearly eighteen years later, Checkmate services over 500 clients across industries and sectors, priding themselves on their accessible, knowledgeable staff, most of which has been with the company for five years or more. In an industry dominated by a handful of national payroll companies, Robinson and Checkmate’s locally oriented focus has been a breath of fresh air for their growing list of clients.....read more here!
You can save 10% on all payroll processing with Checkmate when you join the Green Alliance! Click here to learn more about Checkmate's uniquely community-oriented services!
adaptDESIGN's Fowler proud of work on LEED hospital
When Paul Fowler decided to lift stakes and move from his native Maine to Colorado in 1999, his primary motivation was to be closer to the Centennial State’s majestic mountains, rivers, and woods. What the budding architect couldn’t have known was that his first major project would be a groundbreaking testament to the principles and methods designed to protect that very wilderness.
Later that same year, Fowler’s firm was contracted to help design and build what would become the country’s first ever LEED certified hospital in Boulder, Colorado. Today, the Boulder Community Foothills Hospitals stands as a towering totem to green design, with super efficient lighting, airtight envelope, and water-conscious native plantings proving the hospital’s trend-setting mettle.
It was – and remains – a groundbreaking project, not only for sustainability-focused building worldwide, but for Paul Fowler as well. “It was incredibly rewarding, but also incredibly challenging,” recalls Fowler. “Between the different architects, designers, landscapers, there was a very high level of complexity and intricacy you don’t see with every project.”
Fowler has since moved back to his native New England, where – along with co-founder Bob Cook – he launched adaptDESIGN, a Portsmouth-based architectural firm, last year. In so doing, he’s added an entrepreneurial exclamation point to a career, and a dream, many years in the making....check out the full story in our blog by clicking here!
Join the GA and save 10% on all schematic design services with adaptDESIGN, a Portsmouth company dedicated to sustainable design! Click here!
GaiaClean brings green cleaning to bigger stage
The past decade has seen an explosion in both the production and use of green cleaning products. As a result, brands like Seventh Generation and Simple Green have assumed a household notoriety on par with – and arguably exceeding – their old-fashioned, chemical-laden counterparts.
But what about the offices and hospitals, hotels and restaurants, stores and schools – the proverbial homes away from home where we spend almost as much time as our own abodes? In places like this, where various health codes demand more rigorous and regular cleaning regimens, are we being forced to betray our eco-friendly instincts for the sake of sterile surroundings?
No longer, says Tara Phillips, President of Rye-based GaiaClean. Launched last fall under the parent company DBL Values, GaiaClean – which boasts a satellite office in California – manufactures green cleaning products for commercial, government and institutional applications. With an international client list that includes myriad entities public and private, GaiaClean aims to show how large-scale operations can learn to clean green – and do so without breaking the bank or skimping on performance....read more here!
GA Business save 20% on all green cleaning products! Click here to learn more about this new Rye company!
Greenovations' 10 Minute Architect full of GA businesses
Greenovations Eco Building Supply will be joining forces with associated local Seacoast businesses for “10-Minute Architect,” a free and open public clinic, taking place at the home of Greenovations, 470 US Route 1 in York, Maine, on Wednesday, July 11th from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.
“These 10-Minute Architect Clinics allow attendees a twenty-minute window of one on one time to sit and discuss various issues related to building and design, from everything to basic layouts, to project budget feasibility, permitting issues, construction techniques and more,” says Ring. “And the beauty of these workshops is its useful advice for home and business owners alike; and its advice coming from the professionals!”
The Clinic will bring together a bevy of green minded professionals, all under one roof. In addition to sharing expertise in building, all of the experts share a passion for sustainability. Featured volunteer presenters will be Paul Fowler, Principal at adaptDESIGN; Shannon Alther, Principal at TMS Architects; Peter Robbie, founder of EcoSound Builders; and Christopher Redmond, founder and designer at Little Green Homes......read more here!
By joining the GA, you can save hundreds -- even thousands -- of dollars at over 100 local green businesses! Click here to learn more about how you can go green and save green!
Colonial outdoor fireplace mixes the elegant and rustic
Few relics of summer are more beloved or imbued with nostalgia than an evening around an outdoor fire – why with the stories, songs, and S’mores infusing the crisp evening air as bountifully as the embers themselves.Typically, the centerpiece of this seasonal rite is no more complex than a hand-dug hole or a shallow metal bowl – a rustic venue for a rustic ritual.
But what if you’re looking for a little bit of luxury to help temper the always-fickle New England elements? The Donahues found themselves in just this position when, in the summer of 2011, they first looked into adding an outdoor fireplace to their newly renovated stone patio.
“We love our property, and we love large group gatherings – that was our original motivation,” says Marilyn Donahue, recalling when she and husband Jim first considered augmenting their North Hampton property. “As much as we love fire pits, there’s nothing quite like the ambiance of a fireplace.”
Enter Adam Bennett, owner of the Windham-based Colonial Stoneworks. After years working in the automotive and landscaping sectors, in 2010 Bennett launched Colonial with the aim of emphasizing “green hard-scaping,” specifically the use of New England granite in everything from mailboxes to property walls to walkways and staircases..... Read more here!
Save 15% on all stonework jobs over $1000 and 10% on all jobs under $1000, OR get a FREE granite mailbox post when you spend $2500 on a job -- a $500 value -- with Colonial Stoneworks when you join the GA! Click here to find out more!
Atlantic Green Energy's induction lighting steals spotlight
In the industry of alternative and renewable energy, you would be hard pressed to find a new product that can’t be considered “cutting edge.” It’s the nature of an industry that is constantly expanding and progressing.
But for a relatively new company like Atlantic Green Energy, it’s impressive how “cutting edge” they’ve become, and in such a short time. Owners George Hurley and Jack Haritas started the company in 2009 after many years of working in construction. Even in the few years since its inception, their business now boasts a wide range of alternative energy options from small-scale retrofitting materials to full Solar Thermal systems.
Now, Atlantic Green Energy is poised to add yet another energy-and-money-saving product to their inventory: The newly developed Induction Lighting. Essentially, an induction lamp is like a fluorescent, but slightly different. Instead of relying on “electrodes,” the lamp uses something called induction from gas discharge to create light. The elimination of filaments and electrodes results in a lamp with a potential shelf life of 100,000 hours or 25 years, outlasting 100 incandescent, five HID, or five typical fluorescent lamps.....read more on our GA blog by clicking here!
GA members save 10% on all in-store items at Atlantic Green Energy when they use their Green Card! Click here to learn more!
Conservation Law Foundation a beacon for conservation
Whether the snow-capped White Mountains, the fiery glow of autumn foliage, or the distinct rocky shores along the coast, New Hampshire’s environment has long been an attraction for tourists and a source of pride for residents. With so much natural beauty to admire, protecting the quality and the integrity of the state’s environment is no small feat. For Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), the challenge is well worth it.
Founded in 1966, CLF has long been a defender of New England’s environmental heritage, helping shape the decisions that lead to a higher quality of life and future for our region. Through its extensive work in law, policy, science, and outreach, CLF has for decades contributed to a healthy, clean future for New England and for New Hampshire.
A leader in environmental initiatives and advocacy, CLF is a non-profit organization committed to advancing solutions that address the challenges of climate change, cleaning up our air and water, protecting the ocean, promoting sustainable agriculture, and wisely managing our natural resources by working with businesses, organizations, and policy-makers to achieve its goal of a thriving New England. CLF established a New Hampshire office in 1997....Read more in our blog by clicking here!
Now you can join BOTH the GA and CLF for just $50 a year! Find out about this and other membership options here!
Riverworks' charm, values harken to past & future alike
Back in 1840, around the time the brick and mortar building now housing The Riverworks Restaurant and Tavern was originally built, “local” wasn’t simply the best thing; it was – quite literally – the only thing. It was a simpler time, to be sure; an epoch many decades removed from things like “globalization, “outsourcing,” “environmentalism,” and myriad other buzzwords that have come to define much of our 21st century angst.
To say many things have changed since those halcyon days would be to flirt with cliché; the paths that connected the communities of Seacoast New Hampshire still remain – albeit in blacktop – but the connections, particularly with respect to commerce, seem perpetually dimming.
Not in this two-story icon, however. From millinery to grocery store, hardware shop to – starting 32 years ago – oft-frequented restaurant, The Riverworks has served as a popular meeting place, and a community linchpin for a town that in many ways epitomizes New England Americana.
In recent years, the restaurant has also taken on a number of green-minded initiatives, including composting and recycling programs – they even give away their spent cooking oil for use in biodiesel vehicles – and the installation of high efficiency lighting, motion sensors, and programmable thermostats.... Read more in our blog by clicking here!
Save 10% on all food -- including catering services -- at Riverworks Restaurant & Tavern when you join the Green Alliance! Click here to learn more!
Boston Lobsters play the green advantage
Whether it's the green courts or the green balls bouncing back and forth, the game of tennis is commonly colored in green. However, for Darlene Hayes, Director of the Boston Lobsters, the actual greening of tennis has just begun.
Welcoming in the fifth season, the professional tennis league known as the Boston Lobster’s, proudly asserts themselves as an organization that works green and plays green. As the Boston Lobster’s continue to grow in scope and outreach, their commitment to sustainability has become a central focus.
“Most people think of tennis as a quiet, solo sport. The Boston Lobster’s, on the other hand, are high energy, inclusive, and team oriented,” says Director Darlene Hayes, “We strive for diversity and community involvement in our organization.”
With live ticket sales opening this month, the Boston Lobsters look forward to sold out matches and events. Boston Lobster fans will have the opportunity to see some of the biggest names in tennis, including Lindsay Davenport and John Isner.
“This season we are really pushing our efforts to decrease our carbon footprint and reduce waste at our events,” says Hayes. In celebration of the sustainable initiatives, the Boston Lobster’s will host the Green Initiatives Night event on Sunday, July 22nd. In line with the efforts to address sustainability, Green Alliance Members will be offered 10% off all Boston Lobster ticket purchases, an excellent chance to enjoy the quality of professional tennis that is affordable for the whole family! .....Read more in our blog by clicking here!
July 7 – Eleventh Annual Riverfest- 1pm, Waterfront Park, Newburyport, MA. This festival is FREE and open to the public.There are four bands headlining this festival: Adam Ezra Group, The Brew, Van Ghost, and Mat Kearney. For more info, click here. July 7, 14, 21, 28 - Newmarket Farmers’ Market – 9am to 1pm, 220 South Main Street, Newmarket. Bring the whole family and come enjoy a list of farmers, vendors and entertainment! For more info click here, or call (603) 659-3391. July 8 – NH “Welcome Home” End of Iraq War Parade – 2pm, City Hall, Portsmouth. Celebrate the homecoming recently returned veterans from both Iraq and Afghanistan, and our military personnel in general, at Portsmouths' inaugural "Welcome Home" parade. For more information visit the City of Portsmouth's website, here. July 11 –Greenovations Presents: 10 Minute Architect – 4:30 to 6:30pm, 470 Route 1, York, ME. This unique event will be a FREE clinic open to the public, allowing folks to sit down with an architect to review a design plan or ask architectural or building related questions. Green Alliance business partners Adapt Design, TMS Architects, EcoSound Builders, and Little Green Homes will be featured. For more information, see the green alliance blog! July 18 -- Seacoast Local presents Fixing the Future– 7:30 pm, Portsmouth Music Hall. The film Fixing the Future inspires hope and renewal in a people overwhelmed by economic collapse. The screening will be followed by a taped panel discussion with: David Brancaccio, Bill McKibben, Majora Carter and Richard Rockefeller, Ed.M., M.D. Click Here to reserve your tickets today! July 18 – Greenerpalooza V – 5pm, Meadowbrook U.S. Cellular Pavillion. Headlined by legendary guitarist and humanitarian Carlos Santana. Enjoy a host of vendors at the eco-village showing thier green products and green services. For more info click here. July 19 – Seacoast Local Workshop: How Employees Embrace Your Mission – 7:30 to 9:30am 1 Washington Center (Suite 457), Dover, NH. One of a three-part workshop series, this workshop will share ideas on how to facilitate employee “buy-in” in order to create organizational agents who spread the word about your business. For registration and more information please click here! July 21 – American Independence Festival –10am to 5pm, 1 Governor’s Lane, Exeter, NH. Chat with historic role-players, step to the stirring music of the Lincoln Fife and Drum and delight in the maneuvers and cannon firings of the militias. Enjoy plenty of food, music, sidewalk sales and children’s activities. And be sure to stop by and say hi to the Green Alliance! For more info click here! July 22 -Green Night with the Boston Lobsters – 4 to 10pm, Joan Norton Stadium, 10 Village Road, Middleton, MA. Join the Green Alliance and the Boston Lobster's professional tennis league for "Green Initiatives Night" with ongoing activities and presentations for the whole family! Attending "Green Initiatives Night" will be a compilation of green businesses and vendors that have committed to sustainability and environmental business practices. For a full schedule or more info visit bostonlobsters.net. July 25 – GA Green Families Club Celebration – 4 to 7pm, Sagamore Hampton Golf Center, North Hampton, NH. Enjoy over 20 sustainable vendors featuring interactive kids activities, including free mini golf, a real Native American pow-wow, sea creatures touch tank, face painting, kids yoga, and much more! Join 100 other local green families for this FREE festival, and experience what the GA community is all about! The first 30 new Green Families Club members who attend receive a FREE “Greening Your Family” by Lindsay Carmichael Learn more about this great event here! July 29 –Herbal Picnic – 11am to 3pm Langford Homestead Herbs, 160 Langford Road, Candia, NH. Join NOFA-NH for a free potluck event! Herbalist Mimi Alberu of Langford Homestead Herbs will lead a walk through the farm to show guests different medicinal herbs. There will be a potluck lunch in which guests are urged to bring a dish made with local, organic ingredients. The Green Alliance partners with NOFA-NH, to learn more about NOFA and to join, click here. Aug 2 – Seacost Local Workshop: Building Our Business Community Through Collaboration – 730 to 930am, 1 Washington Center, Suite 457, Dover, NH. One of a three-part workshop series, this workshop will be used to discuss how local businesses join to strengthen the drive behind the shift local movement. Sarah Brown, GA Director will be presenting. For more info click here!
Check out more awesome local happenings on our GA Events page by clicking here!