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Katie McQuaid's Scene in Manchester: Food, beer and music wheel into McIntyre Ski Area

By Katie McQuaid
June 01. 2018 9:10PM
Alannah Leclerc, 9, from Manchester, eats and hangs out with her brother Brady, 4, as Food Trucks for CASA opened Friday afternoon at McIntyre Ski Area in Manchester. (THOMAS ROY/UNION LEADER)

“Keep em’ happy.” That’s Loren Foxx’s mission at this year’s Food Trucks for CASA event taking place at McIntyre Ski Area this weekend.

Long lines at any food festival are unavoidable, Foxx admits. The solution? Bands and beer. No one will get bored waiting for their turn at the truck thanks to a lineup of live music and other entertainment scheduled for the event.

Diners will be treated to rock n’ roll, soul and blues music while enjoying some brews from Harpoon Brewery, offering six flavors poured from the Pub2Go truck.

Foxx, who helps promote and plan the festival, said the concept is really the brainchild of Alan Amero, a veteran of the food truck industry who thought Manchester was ready for its own foodie festival.

He was right. Maybe too right. More than 9,000 people showed up for last year’s inaugural event, overwhelming some of the trucks, which ran out of food. Foxx said they are ready for an even larger crowd this year, with 13 food trucks offering everything from fair favorites like fries and frappes to more exotic and ethnic cuisine like Mediterranean Halal dishes, Chilean churrasco, and empanadas. There are cupcakes, pizza and pretzels, too.

General admission to the festival is $5. Kids 12 and under can enter for free. You can also pre-purchase some packages, including the $25 ticket, two beers and T-shirt package.

Food prices will vary from truck to truck, and organizers suggest bringing cash, although there is an ATM on-site. There is free parking both at McIntyre and at the lower lots at the Manchester VA, with shuttle service to and from the festival.

Foxx said Amero is once again donating 100 percent of the profits to CASA-NH. Last year that added up to $19,000 for the statewide nonprofit that recruits, trains and supports volunteers to advocate in court on behalf of abused and neglected children.

Sometimes events like these will loudly say a portion of their proceeds is going to a good cause, but quietly admit it’s only a small percentage. The transparency of this one is refreshing.

“It’s called Food Trucks for CASA,” Foxx said. “It’s pretty obvious where the money’s going.”

Food Trucks for CASA continues today, June 2, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. and tomorrow, June 3, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

See a list of trucks and entertainment, and pre-purchase tickets at

Fourth-grade field trip

The Manchester Rotary Club, celebrating its centennial, wants to make sure Manchester students get a dose of Queen City history, and has just announced a $15,000 grant to the Manchester Historic Association to fund field trips to the Millyard Museum for every fourth grade class in the city, starting this September.

“Manchester is a resilient city that has reinvented itself more than once,” said incoming Rotary Club President Susan Manchester. “We need to learn from our past, which is why Manchester Rotary Club is pleased to donate this sum to MHA so our students can witness the successes, challenges and perseverance of those who came before them.”

The grant money will cover bus rentals and the cost of two educational programs at the Millyard Museum.

“This extraordinary grant from the Manchester Rotary Club is helping to fulfill a vision I have nurtured since I was named executive director three years ago,” said the Manchester Historic Association’s John Clayton. “How perfect that Rotary will commemorate its own historic milestone by helping students appreciate the history of this amazing city.”

The grant award was also embraced by Manchester’s Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Bolgen Vargas, who is an avid fan of the Millyard Museum.

“Manchester has a rich history, and all of our children should have the opportunity to learn more about what makes our city unique,” said Vargas. “We are thankful to the Manchester Rotary Club for providing the resources that will help the Millyard Museum reach more than a thousand fourth-graders in the next school year. I know that our teachers and students will be eager to participate in the educational programs available.”

As funding permits, the MHA will also reach out to parochial schools and charter schools in the city, according to Clayton.

“To this very day, I remember full well my fourth-grade field trip to the MHA from Gossler Park School,” he said, “and the Manchester Rotary Club is now giving that same opportunity to so many kids. We couldn’t be more grateful.”

Good luck, girls

More than 1,600 Granite State girls will be running their first 5K at Girls on the Run New Hampshire’s Spring 2018 celebration today at Memorial Field in Concord.

Mayor Joyce Craig, an avid runner, will speak at the event. Best of luck to all the young ladies and their dedicated coaches from Manchester, including the 30 girls from Wilson Elementary School who will be singing the National Anthem at the event.

Do you have an interesting item for The Scene? Send it to Katie at

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