Welcome to ELF!

ELF is the weekly entertainment and lifestyles publication brought to you by The Keene Sentinel. You’ll find lively features about local people, businesses and information on gardening, pets, healthy living, hobbies, antiquing and much more. Our Spotlight section includes local event listings and other activities to plan for a weekend of fun. More than 20,000 copies of ELF are distributed in the area. Please contact elfweekly@keenesentinel.com with any questions or comments, we would love to hear from you!

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Featured Stories


Body & Soul

Here in the Monadnock region, residents are some of the craftiest and most resourceful folks in New England. Small business owners sell trinkets and treats unique to New Hampshire; their attention to detail and knowledge of where their products are sourced from is very important to everyone …

In the middle of their spring semester, with a nationwide shutdown looming, the Brattleboro School of Dance, like many businesses and activities across the nation, closed its studio on High Street. But instead of just sitting back and waiting out the closure, Director and Owner Bridget Strut…

Amid the current COVID-19 pandemic and related social distancing mandates, ELF magazine spoke with Kate Greenen – she is a local mental health professional who offers individual and couples counseling as well as training and consulting – about telehealth appointments during what has been a d…


Intrepid Gardener

All in and all done now that we’re past that created deadline for getting all of our gardens planted and set by Memorial Day weekend? No? Well, me either.

Being the primary writer for our Intrepid Gardener column here at ELF is very rewarding. I get to share my love of getting my hands in the dirt and watching things grow, and I get wonderful feedback from readers. Everything from compliments and tips to sharing of sources and memories of gard…

A bunch of years ago, I was attending a wedding in Chesterfield… up in The Heights, don’t you know. I love water gardens so I was enrapt with a koi pond at the private residence. It was freeform with moving water elements and lovely plants and, of course, I thought I could replicate somethin…


By Hand By Hobby

The treasure you are seeking this week is… a roll of toilet paper, hidden somewhere in Brattleboro. And the story is, it was hidden by T. P. James a long, long time ago.

Tiny houses are as unique as the reasons for them. When you just have 200 square feet, only the stuff that means something to you makes it into the final design.

Keene resident Terri Herzog, a local school counselor, is very involved in the local community. Through a couponing and other groups, she has found fulfillment in such involvement and in helping those in need.

On July 29, Arts Alive! and The Keene Sentinel continue their tradition of recognizing excellence in local art with a multimedia award experience.

A natural, mutual respect and trust are at the core of HorseTenders LLC. Run in conjunction with the Kokal family (owners/operators of Kokal Far in Greenfield), the business promotes strong values that capitalize “the synergy that arises from varying talents and areas of expertise.”

Spring has finally sprung, which means many things. One of the best: adorable, fuzzy baby animals are frolicking on the region’s farms.

We have all heard of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, better known as the SPCA and which includes the New Hampshire Humane Society. But, how many of us know exactly what they do?

Please consider a donation to the MHS COVID Care Fund, which supports these families with the necessary supplies to care for these pets. Your gift will also help fund any needed medical care for these animals. Online donations can be made online at monadnockhumanesociety.org, or by texting “…


Potpourri

Since 1799, The Keene Sentinel has stood witness to local, state, national and international events, chronicling history as it happens with a unique focus on this community and its people. Like the venerable Monadnock Region we serve, this company has weathered all manner of challenges durin…

The team at Bulldog Design in Keene has come up with a way to keep themselves busy during the COVID-19 outbreak while helping out their community.

Most people who know me are familiar with my fondness for gardening and landscaping, as well as antiques and home renovating. They usually also know I’m not much of a cook.

For the tenth year, independent businesses and community members in the Monadnock Region will celebrate Plaid Friday the day after Thanksgiving. This year’s event falls on Friday, Nov. 29, when individuals will wear plaid to show support for the local economy and their commitment to spending…


It Takes a Farm

Summer under the shadow of the coronavirus aims to look quite different. However, the sun will still shine, temperatures will still rise and area farmers will still provide farm-fresh fare for the benefit of local customers. While how they bring their goods to market may change, the cycle of…

  • Updated

Farming is known as a challenging business, with farmers more often motivated by the love of the land than the lure of high profits. One of the earliest, and last, problems they face is finding land to farm, or securing a way to pass their farm on to the next generation.

The pandemic has been hard on everyone, but it has hindered community involvement particularly hard. Volunteer organizations all over the state have had a difficult time congregating with each other. Luckily, members of the New Hampshire 4-H Club have found ways to keep themselves and their …

The recent challenges to big agribusiness, in this historical moment of social distancing and pandemic, has created some serious cracks in the food chain. Even in normal times, farm products travel an average of 1,400 miles to get from farm to plate. The pandemic has focused a spotlight on t…


Nest / Intrepid Gardener

What keeps you grounded? It is different with every individual. For some, it is the thought of gazing under the stars on a warm summer night. For others, it’s basking by the beach, taking in the salty fresh air, soaking up the sun with sandy toes. Everyone envisions their ultimate tranquilit…

Turn on the tv or boot up a streaming service and chances are within moments there is a program featuring home renovation and remodeling available to watch. A few new ideas from one of these shows, combined with the resources on the internet that contain everything from how-to videos to arti…

Majestically situated on the picturesque village Common in Walpole, N.H., is a Federal style home, formerly an inn – currently being offered proudly by Re/Max Town & Country in Keene. It dates back to the 1800s and with ties to Louisa May Alcott. This prodigious home and property at 50 E…

While there’s still tons of folks having to actually report to their physical workspace (a heartfelt “thank you” to you all), the concept of working from home and avoiding contact with others as much as possible is not the vacation I might have dreamed it would be.


Outside My Door

In the age of social distancing, there are some who can still safely spend time with several thousand of their closest friends.

Less than an hour from Keene lies an opportunity to drink in the “tonic of wildness.” In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, people are spending more time outside, some even venturing out to areas just outside the Monadnock region.

Springtime usually means runners across the region are ditching the treadmill or packing away the shoe spikes and headlamps. For local running clubs, it also means a return to social runs and group get-togethers. However, COVID-19 has left its mark on yet another facet of everyday life and f…

Lost, forgotten and abandoned – there are some interesting items to be found out in the woods. One of the most common discoveries is old automobiles that were taken for a final joy ride and then left where they finally expired. I’ve lost count of how many I’ve discovered, but the one that st…


Pickin' & Pokin'

By the 1960s, high schools were allowing girls to take shop class. And boys could opt for home economics (home ec) class. The times were a’changin, and JD Leedham was on board.

The Historical Society of Cheshire County’s years of dedication to preserving the region’s past has gotten the attention of the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance. It’s among the winners of the 2020 Preservation Achievement Awards, announced during a virtual gathering earlier this month.

Have you ever wondered where you come from? And what about your ancestors? Researching the past can be daunting. But locally, there’s a group that can help.

Social distancing is keeping us home (and at least mostly indoors), but that doesn’t mean we can’t still have fun. That’s Toy City’s motto.


The Dish

I learned how to cook in the kitchen from watching cooking shows. PBS had Julia Childs, Jacques Pépin, Martin Yan, Lidia Bastianich and Nick Stellino. The Food Network had Tyler Florence, Alton Brown, Paula Deen, Emeril Lagasse, Bobby Flay and Aarón Sánchez.

A pancake by any other name is, well, still a pancake. That is, unless it’s a pancake from Asia. Pancakes in the Far East are eaten for breakfast, snacks or any time of day, and often sold by street food vendors. Annie Lee, who owns Lee & Mt. Fuji in Marlborough alongside her husband Jam…

Eggs are a very versatile food that can be eaten anytime. They can be poached, fried and scrambled, and used in anything from a main dish to a dessert.


Spotlight

Liz Canning was a lifelong bicycle commuter racer. She rode her bike everywhere, until she had twins in 2008.

No audience allowed at the theater? As the great Sherlock Holmes would say, “Elementary.”

During my time at Keene State College, I could always count on the school’s Film Society to provide me with an inviting environment to express my admiration toward a number of great movies with some wonderful people. We may be separated from one another under some incredibly strenuous circum…

Because the pandemic is preventing audiences from getting to experience live music at the region’s churches, meetinghouses and town halls, Monadnock Music will bring as much of the experience as they can to your home this summer.