The Thing In The Spring

     As the earth turns green and the sun brings warmer temperatures, outdoor events of all kinds come to the Monadnock region.  Kicking off the season of music and art is The Thing in The Spring in downtown Peterborough.

      What began as a concept between three friends is now a four day event bringing music of all genres to this region since 2008. Ryan Wilson and Eric Gagne worked together at the Toadstool Bookshop and started designing posters in the styles of Art Deco and the Fillmore concerts.  “We liked the Fillmore shows where they would put different genres of music together and we thought, ‘Why not create a show where there was diverse music and a DIY effort?’  Our emphasis was not about making money, but the pure experience and joy of making your life the way you want it to be.” At the same time Ryan and Mary Goldthwaite-Gagne were talking about holding an affordable arts show. *broke was created – an art show featuring a variety of media where all pieces are sold for under $50, held during the Thing in the Spring as well as late fall.

     The goal of The Thing in the Spring is to bring fresh music to the region that festival goers have probably not heard before except on free form or college radio stations.  “We want to challenge people’s notion of music,” said Eric.  “The music is not your top forty covers or easy listening. We want to bring new sounds without going too extreme in any one direction.  While we like it when people come out scratching their heads, we want people to feel like they can ask questions, that they can engage with us.” A great majority of the musicians are coming to the Monadnock region for the first time, while some, like Bunny’s a Swine, Mail the Horse, and Dredd Foole (Dan Ireton) have been part of The Thing numerous times.

     Over the course of the festival there are five featured shows, free performances around town (mostly before or after the main shows), late night music at Harlow’s Pub, and DJ’s at Waterhouse Restaurant. In addition to music and the art show, the schedule includes readings and showings of classic films. 

     Admission to the performances is very reasonable; if you buy your tickets in advance, the priciest show is $15!  You can also buy a pass to all five shows for $50. For more details about the schedule and the performers, go to



Lynn Merlone is the founder of Monadnotes, a website featuring musical offerings and opportunities in the Monadnock region.Here you find pages with descriptions of local musicians by genre; music venues and events; music instruction; open mics, jams and karaoke; and musical groups for you to join.The Event Calendar boasts the most complete listings of musical events in southwestern New Hampshire.
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