A Valley News Publication

Thai Orchid to reopen on Hanover Street in Lebanon, planning soft launch in May

When you’re a reporter and you walk by a sign that says, “What IS Happening Here?,” you’ve pretty much gotta ask. They cover that on the first day of Journalism 101.

I mention it, because that’s what happened to me on Hanover Street in Lebanon today. (You may have seen my super-sweet Facebook Live video just a few minutes beforehand.*)

Gotta say, putting that question to the person working out front was an odd experience. With the big red letters looming overhead, the only words I could get out of my mouth were, “What … is … happening here?” 😂

The answer: It’s going to be the new home of Thai Orchid, which was previously located in Hanover. The owners hope to have it open in May.

The future home of Thai Orchid on Hanover Street in Lebanon, N.H., on Wednesday, April 18, 2018.

And, when I got back to the newsroom, turns out that business reporter John Lippman is already on the case. Here’s a sneak peek at Lippman’s dispatch coming up in the Sunday Valley News

Former Hanover restaurant Thai Orchid has found a new home — in Lebanon.


Owner-chef Pim Pinitmontri and her husband, Robert Lamprey, are reopening the Thai cuisine restaurant, which closed in Hanover last summer citing the town’s declining retail business and parking problems, at 70 Hanover Street in Lebanon in the location formerly occupied by Upper Valley Underground Crossfit.


Now renamed Pim’s Thai Orchid, Lambrey said the restaurant is targeting a “soft opening” in May and will feature many new menu ideas that Pinitmontri picked up during an extended winter trip back to her native Thailand where she studied with a leading Thai chef and toured Bangkok’s restaurants.


“We looked at a lot of places but this was the best location available,” Lamprey said, explaining the space in front of the building provides “ample parking” and the well-traveled corridor is strategically located near downtown Lebanon, the municipal parking lot and Exit 18 on Interstate 89.


Pim’s Thai Orchid will seat 48 compared to 80 at the former Hanover location. “That’s more manageable, we’ll need less help which will keep costs down and we’ll have take-out and delivery because the restaurant business is moving in that direction.”


Lampert described the new menu as “traditional Thai meets the New World,” and will feature infusions from Vietnamese, Chinese and Malaysian cuisine.


As it turns out, Pim’s Thai Orchid will be leasing space in a building owned by Sommay Vorachak, the former owner of Mai Thai Cuisine in Hanover, which Pinitmontri and Lamprey took over five years ago and renamed Thai Orchid.

RELATED: Canoe Club Sold; Thai Orchid Closes in Hanover

* p.s. Here’s the Facebook Live! Get those STICKERS! And if you know how to record those things in landscape mode, help me out. 😭

Willem Lange writes of a deep love and the end of life

Willem and Ida Lange, and their first daughter, Virginia, with Willem’s Jaguar roadster in the summer of 1960. Ida Lange died April 12, 2018. She was 78. (Photograph courtesy of Willem Lange)

Ida Lange, who was married to A Yankee Notebook writer Willem Lange, has passed away at age 78. Lange, who always referred to Ida as “Mother,” writes:

Unless you knew her, you can’t imagine her vitality! From the moment in July of 1959 that she walked, beautifully, past the manhole I was digging in State Street in Syracuse, till the last day of her life, we were inextricably engaged, truly for better or worse. All my life the people I’ve been most attracted to have been those most ready for adventure, for beginning an action you hope will lead to a desired result, but may not — like asking a woman to dance; entering a challenging rapid in a river far from home; starting a family because it’s time, not because your future is clear. Mother was the purest of adventure-seekers. In our very first brief conversation, after I’d chased her down the street and caught her at a post box, I heard in her voice the rising inflection that meant she was ready for almost anything.

Read the full tribute here

Lebanon announces winners of Rail Trail public art installation contest

Renderings of “Wheels” by artist Susan K. Johnson (left) and “Steel Umbrella” (right) by artists Justin O’Rourke & Margaret Jacobs. Photos courtesy Lebanon Recreation and Parks Department.

From a news release from Lebanon Recreation and Parks Department:

The AVA Gallery and Art Center, Lebanon Recreation and Parks and the Mascoma River Greenway Coalition are partnering in a program to commission two winning artists to design, fabricate, and install public sculptural artworks for long-term display along Lebanon’s new Rail Trail. Submitting artists were encouraged to select themes related to Lebanon’s history, geography, natural environment, recreational activities, or railroad activities, and to incorporate salvaged railroad spikes.

The five-person jury convened on Saturday to judge submissions, picking projects by Susan K. Johnson (“Wheels,” shown above at left) and Justin O’Rourke and Margaret Jacobs (“Steel Umbrella”).

  • Jury comments about “Steel Umbrella” include: “The umbrella is absolutely joyful. It nods to Lebanon’s past as the City of Fountains. Its polka dots hint at the endangered spotted turtles discovered along the rail trail. It whimsically celebrates the promise of brighter days ahead. Bravo!”
  • Jury comments about “Wheels” include: “ ‘Wheels’ encapsulates Lebanon’s history in a neat bundle — from water wheels to railroads and bicycles, with subtle references to the Mascoma River and the Greenway Rail Trail.”

Winners receive $2,500 for each project, plus up to $2,000 reimbursement for materials and installation expenses.

The winning sculptures will be fabricated by June 30 and installed by mid-July, according to the news release.

That will be in time for the grand opening of the Mascoma River Greenway.

See the full news release below.



hahahahahaha remember when we thought it was spring



Rene Gerrior, of White River Junction, walks past the Hotel Coolidge in White River Junction, Vt., Monday, April 16, 2018. After the weekend’s icy precipitation, the National Weather Service predicts rain Tuesday changing to snow Tuesday night. (Valley News – James M. Patterson) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Purchase a reprint »

(Featuring the dashing Rene Gerrior winning the game per usual … even in weather that can be best described as “misery.” 😭 Hi, Rene!!!)

More James M. Patterson photographs telling the story of yesterday’s weather (summed up as 👎) are at the Valley News website.

April 16 in Thetford: A case study (2017 vs. 2018)

Almost the same view of the same pond in Thetford: 2017 vs. 2018.

Photos courtesy of my dad-in-law, Ed Eastridge! 🙂

April 16, 2017, in Thetford. Photo by Ed Eastridge.

April 16, 2018, in Thetford. Photo by Ed Eastridge.

Speaking of this no-good weather …

Please be very careful on your evening commute! The roads are bad and the scanner has been very busy with emergency response calls.

S-l-o-o-o-o-w d-o-o-o-o-w-n and get home safe.