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New Oceanfront Pavilion at Hampton Beach State Park
Growing up outside of Boston, Hampton Beach State Park was one of my favorite destinations. As a kid, it meant sand castles, arcade games, and boogie-boarding in the surf. When my friends and I were finally old enough to get our licenses, taking a trip up to Hampton Beach became a weekly escape during the summer.
From May to September, Hampton Beach is thriving with people, delicious smells, and music. An awesome music venue, Hampton Beach Casino, is right on the waterfront. A trip to Hampton Beach State Park is more than just a day at the beach; it’s the epitome of summer. Sand, sun, fried food, and fun await you.
Going to the beach during the off season was a surreal experience. The boardwalk, normally buzzing with people, was deserted and boarded up. Few remnants of summer remained.
The streets might have been empty and forgotten, but the ocean was as beautiful as ever. Dozens of people were taking advantage of the warm weather by strolling down the shoreline and using metal detectors.
For years, Hampton Beach has been famous for having more than 80 free concerts every year on their open-aired, beachside stage. There was a massive angular pavilion called The Seashell that was a huge presence on the beach. In 2001, as the aging building became difficult to maintain, the Hampton Beach Redevelopment Plan was born.
This past January, the new Oceanfront Pavilion at Hampton Beach State Park opened.
The new Seashell stage is bigger and better than before, and will host plenty of free concerts this summer.
Behind the stage is a banquet room with a beautiful ocean backdrop, perfect for an unforgettable wedding. The room, which can accommodate 80-120 people, offers panoramic views of the Atlantic. It also has a large new mural capturing scenes from Hampton through the years.
Along with the indoor banquet room, the pavilion has several patio areas that would be great places to tie the knot.
Dreaming of summer (and weddings!), I plopped down mid-January to enjoy an afternoon at the beach. Have you ever been to a NH State Park beach during the off season?
Interested in booking the Oceanfront Pavilion for a wedding or another event? Click here to get more information!
About Theresa Conn, New Hampshire State Parks Winter Intern
Hi all! My name is Theresa Conn, and I’m a sophomore Environmental Conservation Studies major at the University of New Hampshire. Growing up in suburban Massachusetts, my family always ventured north to Lake Winnipesaukee and the White Mountains to hike and relax. When it came time to look at colleges, UNH was an easy choice; between its great location, variety of majors, and college-town feel, I was instantly hooked. In the Environmental Conservation program here, I’ve been learning about New Hampshire’s diminishing natural resources. The more time I spend in nature, the more I realize how important it is to conserve the natural spaces we have left. Keeping parts of New Hampshire wild is critical for the health of the planet and ourselves.
What I’m interested in exploring while writing this blog are the people and stories behind the parks. Be it talking to hikers on the trails, going out with animal trackers to learn about wildlife, or meeting with the stewards who protect our lands, I want to know who’s out there and why. People are the force that drives land protection, and I hope that I can share their stories using film, photography, and journalism.
Grand intentions aside, I can’t wait to find new ways to enjoy the long winter months. Staying pent up inside is boring, and I’m excited to find ways to get outside like dog sledding, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing. I’m ready to explore all that New Hampshire State Parks have to offer, and look forward to sharing my adventures with you!
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