We need to promote NH’s vibrant culture
To the editor:
Culture defines a place, and New Hampshire is no exception. We are the state of Saint-Gaudens, Frost, Peyton Place, John Irving and a long list of musicians, artists, watersports, sculpture and more.
Every summer music festivals blossom across the Granite State, attracting people from all over to experience great music. We have an unequalled tradition of summer theater in our towns and villages. Our League of New Hampshire Craftsmen is a huge driver of visitors, as are the Highland Games. Our cities are alive with culture, music, theater and art. We are truly blessed.
Yes, much of our promotion to the outside world is focused on hiking and the outdoors. Certainly, our beautiful surroundings inspired and brought culture here — just consider how the culture is a unique and powerful marketing tool — it was the White Mountain arts school of the late 19th century that put New Hampshire on the map, and built our tourism industry.
I would not advise to speak less of our lakes, seaside, mountains and forests — but to speak more of our cultural arts and creative economy. If you look at Maine, the state talks a great deal about their creative economy in digital ads and on their blog. It works well to complement their seashore and lakes. We too are blessed with a rich and vibrant culture; it brings people here and defines who we are. We should be proud and talk more about it; we have everything to gain, and nothing to lose.
Peggo Horstmann Hodes