‘It is the aesthetics’
Jan20

‘It is the aesthetics’

Valley News Correspondent WINDSOR — Wood — how it is harvested, sawn, shaped, fastened and finished — has changed dramatically since colonial days. But what has not changed is the appreciation for the look and durability of products made from wood. The appearance of a finely crafted solid wood dining room table of cherry or oak, maple cabinetry or other pieces of furniture invites an irresistible urge to run our hand slowly over the...

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Restoration as an avocation
Oct14

Restoration as an avocation

Valley News Correspondent ENFIELD — Bob LaCroix grew up in West Canaan and after graduating high school in 1967 he enrolled in the National Institute of Dry Cleaning, anticipating he would build a career in the business. But while his head may have been in dry cleaning — where he worked for a few years — his heart and mechanical mind were under the hood of automobiles.In the early 1970s LaCroix began working at a tire business and...

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Repairing with the times
Oct14

Repairing with the times

Valley News Correspondent HARTFORD — As it has become with most industries, computers have become a major, if not necessary, investment for collision repair businesses today.Long gone are the days of simply hammering out a dent, repainting a door or installing a new bumper or fender. Collision repair has had to keep up with advancements in automobile manufacturing, where cars are loaded with safety sensors and modules and give drivers...

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‘I love the car business’
Oct14

‘I love the car business’

Valley News CorrespondentWHITE RIVER JUNCTION — Business has been strong at the Upper Valley Auto Mart where Brad Gilman, 61, sells used cars.But cars themselves are hard to find during the COVID-19 pandemic and prices are rising.“The challenge has been (just) finding inventory to sell to people,” Gilman said.Customers know they have to act fast. Waiting a week may mean losing the car, so Gilman has seen his customers go from inquiry...

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‘We’re a mom-and-pop place’
Oct14

‘We’re a mom-and-pop place’

Valley News Correspondent LEBANON — Steve Roberts started off in the auto industry as a kid, pumping gas on Saturdays at his parents’ garage.Although taking over the operation wasn’t always his plan, the concept evolved over time and came to fruition nearly 20 years ago.“I used to play golf with my dad every Saturday,” Roberts said during a recent interview. “We’d just talk business; I was never going to be in the family business. …...

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Growing  better gardens
Jul16

Growing better gardens

Valley News Correspondent NORWICH — Anne Fayen’s most recent project is a hedge of tropical plants arranged in the atrium of the Montshire Museum of Science. “I’ve always been wary of these kinds of potted houseplants,” Fayen said. “They remind me of going to the dentist.” But this carefully considered display is nothing like the wilting decor of a waiting room. Fayen has worked professionally with plants for more than 40 years, and...

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Pres. Biden’s support might boost right-to-repair efforts in N.H.
Jul16

Pres. Biden’s support might boost right-to-repair efforts in N.H.

Monitor staffNew Hampshire’s right-to-repair community is looking with interest at President Biden’s push for new rules that would let farmers repair equipment they have bought, although it’s far from clear what effect this might have here. “This is welcome news for farmers and consumers. … Manufacturers are making it harder every day for consumers to fix their products, and this results in a lot of gear being tossed in the scrap...

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How the outdoor economy impacts the Upper Valley’s economy
Jul16

How the outdoor economy impacts the Upper Valley’s economy

Executive Director, Upper Valley Business AllianceThroughout the pandemic, we have been hearing of how people are rediscovering the outdoors. It was a safe space to escape our homes when we needed to socially distance and the outdoors provided a respite from looking at four walls day in and out.Although the sudden surge outside came with issues in obtaining sporting equipment and overcrowded trails, many businesses and organizations...

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‘Doing work that has a purpose’
Jul16

‘Doing work that has a purpose’

Valley News Staff Writer/Enterprise Editor Ben Canonica, of Chelsea, has always liked playing in the dirt and being out in nature. In 2007, he started his business, Canonica Farm & Forest Services, where he focuses on trail building, general excavation, stonework and riverbank and habitat restoration. “A lot of times I think it’s like being a little kid. A lot of little kids enjoy playing in the brooks and as little boys we always...

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