Belmont returns 1908 bandstand to like-new condition, appearance – (Laconia Daily Sun – 9.30.14)

BELMONT – Organizers of the historic bandstand dedication described the event Sunday afternoon as “memorable,” saying it was well attended and a lot of fun for those who came. Linda Frawley, the Chair of the Belmont Heritage Commission, said Belmont Village “looked like a scene from a Norman Rockwell painting.” Sunday’s dedication gave Selectmen and members of the Heritage Commission the opportunity to thank all of the people throughout the state who helped in the restoration effort — either through doing research, grant writing or providing labor — for their efforts on the bandstand. Frawley said retired N.H. Architectural Historian James Garvin gave the key remarks by giving the attendees a history of Belmont’s bandstand, bandstands in general, and how they contributed to the town’s communities. The Belmont Village bandstand was built in 1908. She said he noted that in 1908 one of the most popular songs in the country was “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” and in Belmont the town was able to reduce its debt by $177.05. A pool table license cost $10. “It was almost a retrospective,” Frawley said. Frawley said yesterday the first recent effort to restore the bandstand came from Whitman Ide in the 1970s who led the effort to get the bandstand listed on the N.H. Historic Register. She said Garvin had kept all of the notes from Ide’s work and it was partially from them the Heritage Commission was able to restore the bandstand to its former glory. Along with moving it, recent efforts have been to build a concrete slab upon which to settle the structure and have restored it to the condition and color scheme from 1908. Town Historian Wallace Rhodes said “everyone in town is impressed by it.” He said people were a little taken aback initially by the late Victorian-era paint scheme, but have since told him how much they like the rust and green. “People alive today had never seen it anything but white,” he said. Rhodes and Frawley said they wanted to thank everyone that made made Sunday possible, especially all of the young people, including choruses from Canterbury and Belmont Elementary Schools and the Boy Scouts who came to Belmont to celebrate the bandstand. “It was hot,” said Rhodes, “but it was a pretty good event.”&nbsp