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Lakes Region Towns

Learn more about different towns in the Lakes Region, including history, demographic info, employers, town government, schools and more.

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Lakes Region Towns

Alton, NH

Alton NH
The town sits along Alton Bay, the southern end of Lake Winnipesaukee. Alton has many family-friendly attractions and outdoor recreational activities. Enjoy stunning views of the Belknap Mountain range and easy waterfront access.

Barnstead, NH

Barnstead is in Belknap County and the home of the Suncook Lakes. Whether you love sailing in the summer or hitting the snowmobiling in the winter, Barnstead has a variety of year-round outdoor activities.

Center Harbor, NH

Center Harbor was a landing place for lake steamers and stagecoaches, making it a popular summer resort. Today, this lakeside town is still a hit spot for both seasonal and year-round residents. Center Harbor has beautiful year-round views of both Lake Winnipesaukee and Squam Lake.

Freedom, NH

Freedom is part of Carroll County, and is located between the White Mountains and the Lakes Region. Ossipee Lake is at the southern end of the town. Freedom's many camps and resorts attract many seasonal visitors and residents. 

Gilford, NH

Gilford is located in Belknap County and along Lake Winnipesaukee. It is regarded as the "Recreation Center of New Hampshire", and rightly so. Spend the winter months on the slopes of Gunstock Mountain Ski Resort and enjoy summers sailing, fishing, kayaking and more.

Laconia, NH

Laconia is a Belknap County home between Lake Winnipesaukee and Winnisquam Lake. It includes the villages of Lakeport and Weirs Beach. Laconia is a family friendly town for both visitors and permanent residents. Spend sunny days on Weirs Beach and enjoy the winter season with a variety of recreational activities.

Milton, NH

Milton is a Straffod County town and includes the village of Milton Mills. It is home to Milton Three Ponds - beautiful lakes that have easy boating access and a town beach. Milton has a rich history and is a small community that shares a school district with Wakefield.

Meredith, NH

Meredith is a Belknap County home and includes Meredith Village. Lake Winnipesaukee boarders the northern area of the town. Meredith is the perfect town for vacationers, seasonal and permanent residents. It has a bustling downtown with specialty shops, delicious dining spots, summer and winter recreation activities, and much more. Enjoy beautiful views all year round and a vivid community.

Moultonborough, NH

Moultonborough is situated between both Lake Winnipesaukee and Squam Lake. It is a Carroll County town and is the quintessential New England lakeside destination. Both year-round and season residentials, as well as vacationers, can enjoy Moultonborough's historical sites and natural attractions.

New Durham, NH

New Durham is a Strafford County town and home to Merrymeeting Lake. This is a family-friendly town that offers much more, year-round activities for both its residential and visitors. Enjoy a lakeside home with mountain views, including Mount Washington. Spend weekends hiking, snowmobiling, boating, and more!

Ossipee, NH

Ossipee is a beautiful Lakes Region residential town and a popular resort destination. It is located in Carroll County and made up of several villages. Ossipee Lake sits along the northern edge of the town.

Tuftonboro, NH

Tuftonboro is known as “The Diamond in the Heart of New Hampshire”. This Lakes Region town is part of Carroll County and is made up of a couple villages, including Mirror Lake, Melvin Village, Tuftonboro Center, and other. For permanent and seasonal residential, as well as vacationers, enjoy year-round activies: cross country skiing, fishing, enjoying the fall foliage, sailing on Lake Winnipesaukee, relaxing at one of the two town beaches, and much more!

Wakefield, NH

Wakefield is located in Carroll County and includes the villages of Union and Sanbornville. Seasonal and year-round residents enjoy lakefront and view homes, as well as a mountain landscape. There are many lakes and ponds that reside in and around Wakefield, including Lovell Lake, Pine River Pond, Province Lake, and many others.

Wolfeboro, NH

This was the first summer country estate in northern New England, thus the town’s slogan: “The Oldest Summer Resort in America.”  Wolfeboro is located in Carroll County and has access to both Lake Winnipesaukee and Lake Wentworth. This beautiful lakeside town attracts residents and summer vacationers alike. Enjoy a family oriented downtown area with many restaurants and shops. There are also many outdoor activities that all can enjoy, including kayaking and hiking in the summer, and cross country skiing in the winter.


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Wolfeboro, NH

Town of Wolfeboro

Wolfeboro Community contact:
Town of Wolfeboro, Paul J. Skowron, Town Manager, P.O. Box 629, Wolfeboro, NH 03894
Telephone: (603) 569-8161
Fax (603) 569-8167
E-mail: not available
Web Site: no official town site

Town office hours: Mon. - Fri. 8-4
Town Clerk: Patricia Waterman, 569-5328, Mon. - Fri. 8-4
County: Carroll

Population: 2000 Census: From 1990 - 2000 grew to 6,083, adding 1,276 residents. Median age of Wolfeboro residents - 45.3, with 22.1% under 18 and 24.6% 65 & older; the fifth highest percent of residents in that age group among the cities and towns. The total number of households - 2,574, with av. size 2.32 persons. Of those, 1,723 are family households, with av. size 2.83 persons. As of April 1, 2000 there were 3,903 total housing units.

Area: 48.3 square miles of land area and 10.1 square miles of inland water area.

Origin: This town was first granted in 1759 to 4 young men of Portsmouth, and named Wolfeboro in honor of General James Wolfe, who had been victorious at Quebec in 1759. In 1764, 2,300 acres were added to the 60 acres reserved for the governor: Gov. John Wentworth established an estate on the site, known as Kingswood. This was the first summer country estate in northern New England, thus the town’s slogan: “The Oldest Summer Resort in America.” Wolfeboro was incorporated in 1770.

Lake Winnipesaukee Facts:

  • Means “beautiful water in a high place”. A second interpretation from Indian folklore is “The smile of the great spirit.”
  • 6 mapped shipwrecks.
  • 55,685 acres of water, 240 miles of shoreline.
  • 625 billion gallons of water
  • More than 300 islands, largest is 750 acres
  • Elevation 504 feet above sea level.
  • Deepest point is 187 feet.
  • Average depth is 43 feet.
  • Clarity in Wolfeboro Bay is 25 feet (Sechi disc transparency).
  • Freezes over between late December and early January.

Ice Out Dates (Winnipesaukee): Official ice out is declared when the M/S Mount Washington can reach all four of its ports without touching ice. This usually occurs during April. The earliest recorded ice out was March 28, 1921; latest was May 12, 1888.

Lake Wentworth Facts:

  • Entirely in Wolfeboro
  • Has 15 miles of shorefront
  • 20 islands, Stamp Act is the largest.
  • 3,000 acres of water.
  • Deepest point is 85 feet at Fuller’s Deep.
  • Elevation is 30 feet higher than Winnipesaukee.

Lake Wentworth Boat Ramp: One public boat launching ramp at Mast Landing on Route 28, actually on Crescent Lake, access to Wentworth is via Smith River (no boat gas facilities on either lake)

Community median income: Per capital income in 2000 was $26,361 and median 4-person family income was $53,269. Median household income was $44,012.

Tax Information: Annual Budget for 2004 is $17,172,002. and 2004 tax rate is $11.94.

Selectmen: Selectmen’s meetings: 1st and 3rd Wed. of each mo. at 7 p.m. at Town Hall. Copies of agenda are posted at Post Offices and Town Hall. Contact Town Manager at 569-8161.

Planning Board: Meetings 7 p.m. at Wolfeboro Public Library. Call Town Planner at 569-5970.

Planning Administrator: Lakes Region Planning Commission

Zoning Ordinance: 1950, revised in 2000; Master Plan 1996; Brian Underwood, chairman of Zoning Board of Adjustment

Police Department: Office 569-1444; Emergency dial 911.

Fire Dept.: Full time; Acting Chief Butch Morrill, 569-1440; Emergency dial 911.

Rescue: Volunteer, Huggins Hospital is in Wolfeboro; Emergency dial 911.

Utilities: PSNH; Wolfeboro Electric; Water - Wolfeboro Water Dept.; Sanitation - Septic and Municipal; Municipal Treatment Plant; mandatory recycling program; no curbside trash pickup; Cable TV access - Metrocast; public access channel 25.

Schools: Carpenter Elem. K-3; Crescent Lake Elem. 4-6; Kingswood Reg. Middle School and Kingswood Regional High School; Brewster Academy (private school). Nearest community/technical college is in Laconia, and nearest colleges or universities are Plymouth State and Univ. of NH at Durham.

Library: Wolfeboro Public Library, S. Main St.; Mon. - Thurs. 10-8; Fri. & Sat. 10 - 5; Cynthia Scott, director; 569-2428.

Recreation: Full-time year-round. Recreation Department, Director Susan Glenn; parks, golf courses, outdoor swimming, indoor & outdoor tennis courts, indoor ice skating rink, cross country ski trails, museums, performing arts facilities, tourist attractions, youth organizations (ie., Scouts, 4-H, Kingswood Youth Center); youth sports - baseball, soccer, football, basketball & hockey; campgrounds, fishing/hunting, boating/marinas, snowmobile trails, bicycle trails, walking trails, cross country skiing.

Nearest ski area: Gunstock; Abenaki Ski Area (town owned, 569-2513)

Other: Hampshire Pewter (tours); Wentworth State Beach, Libby Museum (May - October, 569-1035); Wright Museum; Antique and Classic Boat Museum, Clark House Historical Museum complex.

Special Events: May - Great Smith River Canoe & Kayak race, starting on Lake Wentworth, hitting white water in Smith River, and ending at Dockside downtown on Lake Winnipesaukee; in July & August Great Waters Music Festival - P.O. Box 488 (56 N. Main St.), Wolfeboro, NH 03894; 569-7710; Fax 569-7715, Web site: info@greatwaters.org; Wolfeboro Folk Festival open air concerts in the community Bandstand at Lakeside Wednesdays and Saturdays during July & August; annual Artists in the Park festival in August, Huggins Hospital Street Fair.

Tourism Region: Distance to: Manchester, 50 mi.; Portland, ME 99 mi., Boston 102 mi., NYC 310 mi., Montreal, Quebec 257 mi.

Largest Employers: Governor Wentworth Regional School District, Huggins Hospital, Wolfeboro Municipal Services, SunBridge Nursing Center, Brewster Academy, Wickers Manufacturer, Wolfeboro Inn and PI Plastek.

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Tuftonboro, NH

Community contact:
Town of Tuftonboro
Carolyn Sundquist, Admin. Assistant
P.O. Box 98, Town Hall, Tuftonboro, NH 03816
Telephone: (603) 569-4539
Fax (603) 569-4328
E-mail: totboro@worldpath.net
Web Site: www.tuftonboro.org

Town office hours: Mon. & Fri. 9-1 pm and 2-4 pm, Wed. 9-1 pm & 2-7 pm.
Town Clerk: Leonora P. Quilliam
County: Carroll

Population: 2000 Census: 2,148.00. Total number of households in Tuftonboro is 926, with av. size 2.32 persons. Of those, 666 are family households, with av. size 2.68 persons. As of April 1, 2000 there were 2,019 total housing units in Tuftonboro.

Area: 40.6 square miles of land area and 8.8 square miles of inland water area.

Origin: Called “The Diamond in the Heart of New Hampshire,” Tuftonboro is the only New Hampshire town that was owned by just one man, John Tufton Mason, for whom the town was named. Mason was heir to the Masonian Claim, the undivided lands of northern New Hampshire, which he sold to a group of Portsmouth merchants in 1746, thereafter known as the Masonian Proprietors. They disposed of the land via grants to prospective settlers prior to the American Revolution. Situated on the shore of Lake Winnipesaukee, Tuftonboro includes the villages of Melvin Corner, Melvin Village, Mirror Lake and Center Tuftonboro. Melvin Village is the business center of the community. The town was incorporated in 1795.

Tuftonboro Community median income: Per capital income in 2000 was $25,070 and median 4-person family income was $51,875. Median household income was $45,729.

Tax Information: Annual Budget for 2004 is $2,,585,698. and 2003 tax rate is $15.30.

Town Offices: Mon., Tues., Wed. & Fri. 9 - noon and 1-4 pm.; Thurs. 9 - noon.

Selectmen: Meet on Mondays at 6:30 pm at Town Office; 569-4539; Susan Weeks is the chairman. Members are William Stockman and William Albee.

Planning Board: Meets first Thursday at Town Office and third Thursday at Town House at 7:30 pm; 569-4539; Mirick Friend, chair.

Planning Administrator: Lakes Region Planning Commission

Zoning Ordinance: Zoning 1972/01; Master Plan 1985; 569-4539; Bob Murray, chairman.

Police Department: Full time; Chief Andrew Shagoury. Dispatch 1-800-552-8960 or 539-2284; Town Office 569-8695; Town Office 569-8695; E-mail: tboropd@worldpath.net

Fire Dept.: Full time; Chief Adam Thompson; Dispatch 539-2262; Mirror Lake Station, 569-2261; E-mail: totfire@worldpath.net

Rescue: Emergency Management - director Adam Thompson; Volunteer; nearest hospital is Huggins Hospital in Wolfeboro.

Utilities: Electric - PSNH; NH Electric Coop.; Water -private wells; Sanitation - private septic; no curbside trash pickup or mandatory recycling program; Cable TV access - Adelphia; Public access channel 3.

Schools: Tuftonboro Central School for kindergarten through sixth grade; Kingswood Regional Middle School and Kingswood Regional High School, Wolfeboro.

Library: Tuftonboro Free Library, 221 Middle Road (Route 109A); 569-4256; Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday, 10-5 pm; Saturday, 9 - noon

Recreation: Eric and Kathy Roseen, co-chairmen; municipal parks; outdoor swimming facility; youth organizations (ie., Scouts, 4-H); Youth sports - baseball,, soccer, football, basketball and hockey; campgrounds; fishing/hunting; boating/marinas; snowmobile trails; bicycle trails; cross country skiing, outdoor ice rink. Nearest ski area: Mt. Cranmore, Attitash, Gunstock.

Other: Summer camps.

Special Events: The Hikers Club’s annual home and garden tour

Tourism Region: Distance to: Manchester, 69 mi.; Portland, ME 70 mi., Boston 112 mi., NYC 320 mi., Montreal, Quebec 243 mi.

Largest employers: PAK 2000, Audio Plex, MYTV Inc. (Marina), N.E. Technic

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Alton, NH

Town of Alton

Alton Community contact:
Town of Alton
Board of Selectmen
Town Administrator Russell Bailey
P.O.Box 659, Main St., Alton, NH 03809
Telephone:(603) 875-2161
Fax: (603) 569-38894
Zip codes: Alton 03809; Alton Bay 03810
E-mail: alton@worldpath.net
Web Site: Should be operational by July 2004

Town office hours: Mon. - Fri. 8:30-4:30
Town Clerk: (603) 875-2101, Mon. - Fri. 8:30-4:30
County: Belknap

Population: 2000 Census: From 1990 - 2000 grew to 4,502, adding 1,216 residents. Median age of Alton ressidents - 41.4, with 23.8% under 18 and 15.4% 65 & older. The total number of households - 1,825, with av. size 2.47 persons. Of those, 1,295 are family households, with av. size 2.93 persons. As of April 1, 2000 there were 3,522 total housing units.

Area: 63.9.3 square miles of land area and 19.3 square miles of inland water area.

Origin: Originally called New Durham Gore because of Mount Major’s rocky terrain, the town was settled by a group from Roxbury, Mass. The name Roxbury (NH) had already been used, so the town was named for the Alton family. The town fronts Alton Bay, the southeastern point of Lake Winnipesaukee, and its 19.3 square miles of inland water area is the largest of any in New Hampshire. Alton was incorporated in 1796. The area features small cottages and motels, catering to a quiet stay on the lake. The old railway station, once a hub of activity, is the information center for the community.

Alton Community

Median income: Per capital income in 2000 was $25,940 and median 4-person family income was $46,467. Median household income was $43,451.

Tax Information: Annual Budget for 2004 is $5,979,463. and 2003 tax rate was $16.84.

Selectmen: Elected.

Planning Board: Elected.

Planning Administrator: Lakes Region Planning Commission

Zoning Ordinance: 1970 and 2002; Master Plan in 2002.

Police Department: Full time; Alton Police Dept. Depot Street; Kevin Iwans; (603) 875-3752.

Fire Dept.: Volunteer Alton Fire & Rescue, Route 140, P.O. Box 472, full time Chief Alan Johnson 875-0222.

Rescue: Commercial and volunteer; nearest hospital is Huggins in Wolfeboro.

Utilities: PSNH; NH Electric, Wolfeboro electric; Water - Alton Waste Works; private septic systems; private curbside trash pickup; mandatory recycling program, Cable TV access - Adelphia.

Schools: SAU 72, P.O. Box 120 Alton, NH 03809; 875-7890, Fax 875-0391; Alton Central School, P.O. Box 910, School St. 875-7500; Fax 875-0380. In 2004 students will attend Prospect Mountain High School, a cooperative school between Alton and Barnstead. District students now attend Alton Central School, a kindergarten through grade 12 facility, all under one roof, or travel for vocational classes to the Region 9 Vocational Center at Kingswood Regional High School in Wolfeboro. The nearest community/technical college is Laconia and the nearest colleges are the University of NH in Durham and McIntosh college in Dover.

Library: Gilman Public Library, Main St.; 875-2550.

Alton Recreation: Director Kellie Troendle; Municipal Parks, outdoor swimming facility; outdoor tennis courts; museums; tourist attractions; youth organizations (i.e., Scouts, 4-H); youth sports - basketball; campgrounds; fishing/hunting; boating/marinas; snowmobile trails; cross country skiing. Nearest ski area, Gunstock in Gilford.

Special Events: From May though mid-October the M/S Mount Washington steams into Alton Bay to pick up passengers for a scenic cruise around the lake, 366-5531; summer concerts in the bandstand, fairs and other activities at the Bay.

Tourism Region: Distance to: Manchester, NH 39 mi.; Portland, ME 88 mi., Boston 91 mi., NYC 299 mi., Montreal, Quebec 255 mi.

Largest Employers: Alton School Department, Town of Alton, McDonald’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Water Industries, Hillsgrove Macbine, Alton Service Center and RF Plante Company

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