COVID-19 may have altered many things on the physical landscape for the time being, but what it hasn’t changed is the spirit of the human race. You can clearly see it around Nashua with people who inspire us all by stepping up to the plate.

These volunteers don’t ask for anything in return. They’re decent souls who want to make a difference.

I cannot fathom running 26.2 miles, but a lot of great runners do it like Stephanie Kepner of Nashua and Caitlyn Albert of Bedford. The pair recently ran the virtual Boston Marathon together, since the world’s longest running marathon was canceled for the first time in its 124-year history.

Stephanie and Caitlyn completed the marathon for Addie, Izzy and Everett, and finished the course at Greeley Park. The women raised more than $33,000 for Boston Children’s Hospital, and family and friends gathered at our beautiful park to cheer them on.

Stephanie told the media about the kids they were running for, “patient partners” who live in New Hampshire. “They are hearty supporters. They’re out on every run, so it’s great to have them here. (Everett) actually broke his femur this summer. They’re still cheering us on, so it’s pretty inspiring.”

Turning to Mine Falls Park, there’s no doubt that this special place is another crown jewel in the Gate City for year-round outdoor activities with its welcoming wetlands, open fields and forests.

Healthy fresh air where you can move about freely and explore nature has become a popular pandemic go-to for many in the area. But even secluded from the traffic and hustle and bustle of the downtown, Mine Falls needs tender loving care. NH Litter Crew recently took a trek to the park with 20-plus volunteers and found plenty of junk dotting the rugged trails and terrain. Volunteers recently bagged 30 pounds of trash just in 30 minutes while walking through Mine Falls.

Then there’s Nashua Soup Kitchen & Shelter serving the greater Nashua community and never skipping a beat, even during these uncertain times. The organization is working harder than ever to provide food resources.

For example, the Mobile Fresh Produce and Children’s Lunches are available Monday, Wednesday and Friday from noon-2 p.m. at Pennichuck Middle School, Ledge Street, Amherst Street , Dr. Crisp Elementary, Mt. Pleasant Elementary, Fairgrounds Elementary and Elm Street Middle School.

Nashua Soup Kitchen also features a Mobile Fresh Produce Pantry from 2-3 p.m. with distributions here:

Monday: Bronstein Apartments and St. Louis Church Hall

Tuesday: Major Drive and Dunkin’ Donuts, 74 Lowell Road

Wednesday: Rodgers Mobile Home Park and River Pines

Thursday: Sullivan Terrace

Thank you to these fine volunteers.


Joan Stylianos is a Nashua native. Her column is published weekly. She can be reached at