Press Releases


Entries in Portsmouth (122)


Chowder Fest Kicks Off Summer at Prescott Park 

The 30th Annual WOKQ Chowder Festival Kicks-off Summer on the Seacoast June 7th
Portsmouth, NH – On Saturday June 7th, Prescott Park Arts Festival will hold their much anticipated summer kick-off event: the 30th Annual Chowder Fest, sponsored by WOKQ and Taste of the Seacoast Magazine. The Festival will open their gates to Prescott Park at 11:30. Historically, this decade’s long tradition draws thousands from near and far for the all-you-can-eat chowder tasting competition. This year, more than a dozen local restaurants will compete in the event to take home the coveted Best Chowder title. The event will host a live oyster shucking demonstration, fun family activities and music by Houston Bernard.
Chowder lovers will enjoy this New England staple from 7th Settlement Brewery, British Beer Company, Goat Island Oyster Company, Roger’s Redline Diner, Bob’s Clam Hut, Billy’s Chowder House, Newick’s Lobster House, Portsmouth Gaslight Co, RiRa Irish Pub, The Martingale Wharf, and The Portsmouth Brewery. The live oyster shucking demonstration will be given by the Goat Island Oyster Company.

“The chowder fest grows bigger and better with every season,” says Executive Director, Ben Anderson. “We’re thrilled to kick off our favorite season of the year with a tradition every true New Englander undoubtedly can enjoy.”
Houston Bernard will take to the Wilcox Industries Main Stage, courtesy of WOKQ. Drawing musical inspiration from his rockabilly roots, this musical artist is said to reveal a new maturity--and a new direction for both dance and country.

The Chowder Festival offers more than delicious New England fare and toe-tapping beats. This great tradition is destined to be even greater than ever this year, with even more fun family activities featured at Prescott Park. The festival offers a Decorate Your Own Chef Hat station for kids, test your chowder knowledge quiz, plus a photo booth for all to enjoy.

Folks will vote on which restaurant deserves the recently-established Golden Ladle Award. Considered to be something like the Stanley Cup of Chowder Fest, this award is given to the restaurant that the public votes as their favorite. The Judge’s Choice award for best chowder will receive free advertising with their choice of WOKQ and Taste of the Seacoast Magazine.
The Chowder Fest starts at 11:30am and continues until the chowder is gone.  The event is free for Prescott Park Arts Festival members, $14 for non-member adults, and $7 for children age 12 and under. Bring your own spoon or borrow a spoon from the Festival for a $1 deposit.

Prescott Park Arts Festival, a non-profit organization, is the Seacoast’s premier outdoor performing arts venue, offering a uniquely accessible experience of high quality live theater and music -- no fixed admissions fees -- in an idyllic natural setting.

For more information contact Ben Anderson at (603)436-2848 or




Prescott Park Arts Festival Announces 2014 Season Line-up


 Portsmouth NH – The much anticipated reveal of Prescott Park Arts Festival’s 2014 season line-up was announced to the public after a week-long sneak preview at the concert series’ sponsor, the River House Restaurant. The summer concert series is well known for offering prestigious music acts from a diverse range of genres in a one-of-a-kind picturesque outdoor setting along the Piscataqua River, all on a suggested donation basis.
This non-profit arts organization will celebrate its 40th anniversary by bringing acclaimed artists to the Seacoast such as Patty Griffin, Rosanne Cash, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Dr. John and more on the Wilcox Industries Main Stage this summer.
“We are so incredibly excited, but also really, really proud,” described the Festival’s executive director, Ben Anderson, “To be able to offer this caliber of acts, and this experience to the full community on a give-what-you-can basis is truly quite special and unique.”
Founded in 1974, the festival has continued to offer its events on a suggested donation basis for its entire history, having raised the amount only once in the early 1980s from $3 to the current amount of $5.
“This is a really important part of our mission,” explained Mr. Anderson, “Regardless of whether you are struggling to pay your electric bill, put gas in your car, or food on your table – you can enjoy the same magical and high-quality experience in Prescott Park.”
Kicking off the season’s concert series will be American Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter and musician, Patty Griffin on Saturday, June 21. Known for her stripped-down songwriting style centered around the folk music genre, her songs have been covered by a host of musicians including Emmylou Harris and the Dixie Chicks.
The Festival is also delighted to welcome American singer-songwriter and author, Rosanne Cash on Saturday, July 5. The eldest daughter of country music icon Johnny Cash, Rosanne has charted twenty-one Top 40 country singles, including eleven Number Ones. She has also received a Grammy Award, and twelve other nominations.
Mary Chapin Carpenter will return to the Park on Saturday, July 12, after being voted most wanted to return following her double-bill performance with Marc Cohn in 2013; a concert that set a brand new, all-time attendance record for the festival.
The 40th anniversary season will close out in style when the festival welcomes in American musical icon, Dr. John. Straight from New Orleans, Dr. John will take the audience on a funky rollercoaster ride of timeless swampy soul blues classics with his soundtrack of tunes from an illustrious fifty-plus year Rock & Roll Hall of Fame career. The six-time Grammy award winner is sure to get the temperatures rising along the banks of the Piscataqua for a one-of-a-kind season finale.
Other season highlights as part of the River House Restaurant Concert Series will include up-and-coming Indie folk powerhouse, Houndmouth (Wednesday, July 23); gritty, soul-drenched Americana trio, The Wood Brothers, as part of the folk festival with Austin-phenomenon Shakey Graves (Friday, July 25); celebrated Country-folk star, Iris Dement (Wednesday, July 30); acclaimed soulful singer Martin Sexton (Wednesday, August 6); hot and swinging Austin-based Hot Club of Cowtown (Saturday, August 9); Grammy Award-winning American songwriter, Loudon Wainwright III(Wednesday, August 13); soul and blues sensation Ruthie Foster (Wednesday, August 20); THE legendary songwriter’s songwriter, Chris Smither (Saturday, August 23); and The Wailin’ Jennys with their heart-stopping harmonies (Wednesday, August 27).
“There is more to come,” hinted  Anderson, “The phone has been ringing off the hook about the summer, so we decided it was time to announce what we had– but we still have some exciting things in the works.”
Prescott Park Arts Festival will also offer Shrek the Musical as their signature musical production presented by C&J Lines this summer. Beginning on Friday, June 27th, Shrek and Donkey promise to take the Park by storm with this award-winning musical filled with hilarious fun, songs and dancing. This well-loved musical will be held every Thursday through Sunday during the summer season.
Tables on the Federal Savings Bank VIP Seating Deck are available for reservations as of Monday, May 12 through Prescott Park’s website, in addition to the blanket reservations in front of the Wilcox Industries Main Stage. Special discount pricing is available for Festival members. All reservations can be made through the Festival’s website at:
Prescott Park Arts Festival, a non-profit organization, is the Seacoast’s premier outdoor performing arts venue, offering a uniquely accessible experience of high quality live theater and music -- no fixed admissions fees -- in an idyllic natural setting.
For more information, contact Ben Anderson, Executive Director, at 603-436-2848 or at


Prescott Park Arts Festival Roof Goes On New Pavilion

Portsmouth, NH – Prescott Park Arts Festival has raised the roof today on a new addition to Prescott Park.  
The new Pavilion will provide more upgraded public restrooms, new food services, and an enhanced audience and park visitor experience.    With the support of more than 100 donors so far, Prescott Park Arts Festival has raised $1 million to fund construction of this new building and make other improvements to the Park.
“It’s a thrill to watch the new structure rise from the ground, emerging from the earth as the snow washes away.   This progress, along with our recent announcement of the summer musical, makes us all feel a little bit of spring in the air;” commented Executive Director Ben Anderson.  “I look forward to sharing the improved Park with all the Festival fans in the coming months.  We are so appreciative of the overwhelming community support.”
As construction speeds along, the Believe in Magic capital campaign for these improvements, has added a corporate phase to help reach its goal.   To date, more than thirty local businesses have joined the Campaign Corporate Club, with gifts ranging from $250 to $50,000. The Campaign goal is $1.3 million and a ribbon cutting is anticipated early this summer.
Contributions to the campaign, and more information about the Campaign Corporate Club, may be made online at or sent via mail to Prescott Park Arts Festival, PO Box 4370, Portsmouth NH 03801.
Prescott Park Arts Festival, a non-profit organization, is the Seacoast’s premier outdoor performing arts venue, offering a uniquely accessible experience of high quality live theater and music – with no fixed admissions fees -- in an idyllic natural setting. For many residents, the festival provides a first experience with live performances, as well as offers nearly twelve community groups with a professional festival performance opportunity.
Established in 1974, this community arts organization has reached more than 3 million people through more than 10,000 events. The 40th anniversary season will feature Shrek the Musical as the festival’s signature musical production on the Wilcox Industries Main Stage, a mix of local, national and international artists as part of the River House Restaurant Concert Series, a film series, and much more.
To learn more about the festival and campaign effort, visit the festival website at

Prescott Park Arts Festival, a non-profit organization, is the Seacoast’s premier outdoor performing arts venue, offering a uniquely accessible experience of high quality live theater and music -- no fixed admissions fees -- in an idyllic natural setting.

For more information contact Ben Anderson at (603)-436-2848(603)-436-2848 or



More than five million Americans have enrolled in health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
However, many more are facing cost constraints, concerns or outright confusion over their options.
Frisbie Hospital CEO Al Felgar says the Affordable Care Act has been a disaster.
Felgar and a panel of three other local business leaders spoke to citizens Tuesday evening at an Americans For Prosperity event titled "'Obamacare': Real Stories, Real People."
Felgar has worked at Frisbee for 21 years and remembers when there were dozens of insurance companies writing policies in the state. Now, under the Affordable Care Act, New Hampshire citizens have only one provider to choose from.
Felgar doesn't understand why Anthem was given a monopoly in the state under the ACA and says, "They control everything."
He said Anthem was able to "choose the 16 hospitals they want to play ball with," while those who didn't make the cut are out in the cold.
"When a hospital is knocked out of 'Obamacare,' most of the doctors are unable to participate," he said.
This has left 10 hospitals in the state and the majority of Frisbie's 14 physician practices from being included in Anthem's coverage under the ACA.
"The whole process stinks," he said. "We've got many, many patients who will sign up under the Affordable Care Act, but they can't go to the hospital they've been going to for decades."

Felgar believes it is "grossly unfair" for people to have to leave their communities and give up their doctors to be treated.
"Your family doctor is really under the gun these days to do a good job for you, and when this came down in the middle of the night — that they were wiped out for no reason — it devastated them," he said.
Click HERE to read the entire article.


NHDP - Fmr. Mayor Ferrini: Portsmouth Supports Jeanne Shaheen

Don’t Let Wall Street and Big Oil Buy Our Senate Seat

Portsmouth, NH—As former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown plays tourist in New Hampshire, he keeps running into concerned New Hampshire residents who want to hold him to the same standard he set in Massachusetts when he signed the People’s Pledge in 2012.
“What Scott Brown will see in Portsmouth is that we support Jeanne Shaheen. Thanks to her work to secure funding for the Memorial Bridge, keep the shipyard open, and bring the KC-46A tanker to Pease, Portsmouth and the families that live here are better off,” said former Portsmouth Mayor Tom Ferrini. "We know Jeanne Shaheen is going to stand up to special interests and fight for us. Scott Brown has to prove that he will do the same. That means signing the same People's Pledge he signed in Massachusetts to keep Wall Street and Big Oil from buying our Senate seat."