Let the river run

We used this lovely song written by  Bill Staines a NH native from Dover, to close out the  Squamscott River movie. I do have not much left to say to the Community on dam removal and restoration of the watershed. There will be a final opportunity this weekend at Town Hall to ask questions.


I don’t have any questions.

Join us as we do the good thing, the smart thing, the right thing.

Vote yes on dam removal.




I don’t know who will be sitting in the Selectmen seats when the Great? dam is removed , but I imagine them all in one raft descending the Great! Falls to  open the inaugural Great! Falls Exeter  Kayak  Race.  There will be a significant waterfall at the site. The computer generated side view you may have seen does not show the drop. The imagined Falls should have been shown from a down river or String Bridge perspective. It will be beautiful,  and loads of fun in Spring.


River side seating at the restaurants on Water Street was sold out for weeks in advance of the event. It was wild downtown, all over Town.

Cheat_Fest_BoatsGilman Park was the main staging area , the Swasey too was mobbed . Kayaks were transported,  for a small fee, back to Gilman Park for those wanting another run. Great kayaking and canoeing, fishing, swimming. I cannot fathom why there is even a question before us on this . The 3 Selectmen were wrong to vote no after all the years of study.

I have been writing about dam removal for many years and I have no problem with saying  that if this does not happen it is a complete and utter failure of our local government. The fact that there are those that are nervous that a new Board will somehow screw with the vote if it’s a yea,is ludicrous. If that happens any other fix will be on your dimes, lots of them. There is no grant money for a slapdash fix. So just vote yes and let’s move on to the next project.

Once we do the right thing, the smart  thing, and vote yes to remove the old dam we will reap the benefits. I don’t  think I have heard anyone but opponents use the words “tear down the dam”.

Oh the emotion.

That was funny at the Candidates Forum , Matt describing a block party with  his neighbors  watching the River roar through their basements. The approximate drop in flood levels with the Dam removed  on Franklin St will be 5 feet.

There is no question the dam should come down and come down now, especially with the prospect of funding of the lions share in our reach. We will never have to worry about it ever again.




IMG_1334Extra skill points awarded for those weaving the IOKA arches.

IMG_1332Extra points if you can go across the head of the Island to shoot the right  arch of String Bridge.


A fixed camera here could earn you some money selling the photos of the daring  souls.


IMG_1326If it all could be arranged with the heavens a high tide would be great for the finish.

I will check the tide charts for some weekends in Spring 2016!

Dream a little dream with me.


Citizen Petition Documents

I had been told about the prospect of a citizens petition for the Great? dam removal some time ago. I like many others just wanted to give our Selectmen the additional time(after the initial no) to make a more measured decision.

It was understood that if the Board of Selectmen could not come together to lead, then the Community would do it.

There are already folks  canvassing their own neighborhoods to get this done. My pal Peter Kennedy was called upon Sunday afternoon by an elderly woman from his neighborhood.

“Where do I sign?”

While only 25 signatures are necessary to place it on the ballot, we should really try and blow the numbers out, big time.

Big numbers on the petition will translate into major buzz in the press and make this easy, as it should have been.I think this could be it, the “big issue ” that brings everyone out in March,including a demographic missing in action of late.

Those with school age children.

You have to get there this year, it’s a priority.

“Mom, Dad, did you vote yes to save the Exeter River and restore the watershed?”

I do not want to waste anytime with naysayers, and firmly communicated that  to Brian Griset  just now on the phone. There is no reason for anyone to be pilloried for standing in the way. We really don’t need any more information or meetings on the immense value of dam removal for our Community.

Let’s just walk on by…

If you do feel out of the loop Brian is trying to organize one last session, in my view it’s all been talked to death.

Just a note here for those who actually watch Town matters and know the players. This is not about “reaching across the aisle” you can hold onto your politics and hard views on all the other issues facing Exeter.

On the Dam there is wide agreement across all those lines and we should be joining hands.

I will dance with anyone to get this dam removed and you should too. Brian and I are planning a coffee date!

I can hear the Nun even now “Mr Lambert keep your hand on her shoulder and please  leave some room for the Holy Ghost!”

More later on that information session.

Now is the time for action.

I have the documents here on the ETC just grab a copy of the petition, print and   get out to see your neighbors.

Citizens Petition River Flyer

3 River restoration Petition article-1

These signed petitions are due in the Town Clerks Office on Tuesday the 14th of January.

Restoring the Exeter River, it’s the right thing to do.



Another Dam meeting

I attended the meeting last night at Town Hall with about 50 other folks. If  you were to employ Tuckers pure citizen count, 40.

I left  after they finally( 20 plus minutes of  introductions)  got to the meat and the consultant dismissed concerns about  sediment, and flow  rate changes , and were heading off into  cultural resources. I am not that  interested in those discussions.

Here is all you need to know, if the Dam gets removed it will have no effect  on the Squamscott River below the Dam  and a negligible effect upstream. The Squamscott below the dam is not layered with toxic sediments from the Mill. It was a very good report. The only effect upstream might be that  some areas that are prone to  flooding, now could be suitable for homes.


Frankly I can see no impediment  to removal.