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Blais & Associates, Realtors®
32 Monadnock Hwy.
Keene, NH 03431
Phone (603) 352-1972
Fax (603) 352-0545

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The Monadnock Region is a tourism region in southwestern New Hampshire. It is named after Mount Monadnock, the major geographic landmark in the region. The Monadnock Region is composed of all of Cheshire County and western Hillsborough County. The largest city in the region is Keene. Large towns in the region include Jaffrey, Swanzey, and Peterborough.

(Keene State) and a graduate school (Antioch New England) in the heart of the town only adds to the charm and bustle, as well as contributing a dimension of culture and the arts not often found in cities of similar size. And on Main Street, the Colonial Theatre was recently restored to its 1920's glory, giving Keene a unique stage for professional theater troupes and concerts, as well as one of the largest movie screens in New Hampshire.

Top-notch schools, excellent medical care in modern facilities (Dartmouth-Hitchcock Clinic and Cheshire Medical Center), a thriving and prosperous downtown, and a healthy and diversified economic base are just a few of Keene’s advantages. The well-defined seasons provide a change of pace and a variety of activities to enjoy with each new season. Some of New England's best skiing is only an hour away, and you can cross-country ski out your back door. Maple sugaring marks the beginning of spring, as golfers eagerly await the opening of the 36-hole Bretwood Club (rated one of the 5 best in the state by Golf Digest) and the 18-hole Keene Country Club.

Summer invites you to enjoy the crystal-clear lakes and ponds so abundant in the area. After a day of sailing or swimming, enjoy a quiet dinner in one of our many fine inns. A bikers paradise, there are lots of wonderful back country roads with no traffic. Or climb Mount Monadnock, the worlds second most-climbed mountain! The splendor of fall foliage welcomes visitors from all over the world to the areas forests and mountains-- to wander through picturesque 18th- and 19th century villages visiting the antique shops and craftsmen for which New England is so noted. It is amazing to continually meet people who are widely traveled who decide to make the Monadnock Region their permanent home.

Keene is located at 42°56′01″N 72°16′41″W / 42.93361°N 72.27806°W / 42.93361; -72.27806 (42.9339, -72.2784).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 37.6 square miles (97.4 km2). 37.3 sq mi (96.6 km2) of it is land and 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2) of it is water, comprising 0.67% of the town. Keene is drained by the Ashuelot River. The highest point in Keene is the summit of Grays Hill in the city's northwest corner, at 1,388 feet (423 m) above sea level. Keene is entirely within the Connecticut River watershed, with all of the city except for the northwest corner draining to the Connecticut via the Ashuelot River.

Keene is located in a temperate climate zone. It experiences all four seasons quite distinctly. The summers can get very hot. The average high temperature in July is 82, and the record high for Keene is 102. As with other cities in the eastern U.S., periods of high humidity can raise heat indices to near 110. During the summer, Keene can get hit by thunderstorms from the west, but the Green Mountains to the west often break up some of the storms, so that Keene doesn't usually experience a thunderstorm at full strength. The last time a tornado hit Cheshire County was in 1997.

The winters in Keene can be very harsh. The most recent such winter was 2002-2003, when Keene received 112.5" of snow. The majority of the snowfall in Keene comes from nor'easters, areas of low pressure that move up the Atlantic coast and strengthen. Many times these storms can produce blizzard conditions across southern New England. Recent examples are the blizzard of 2005 and the blizzard of 2006. Keene is situated in an area where cold air meets the moisture from the south, so oftentimes Keene gets the jackpot with winter storms. Aside from snow, winters can be very cold. Even in the warmest of winters, Keene usually has at least one night below zero. During January 2004, Keene saw highs below freezing 25 of the days including five days in the single digits and one day with a high of zero. Overnight lows dropped below zero 12 times, including 7 nights below -10. The record low in Keene is -31. In addition to the cold temperatures, Keene can receive biting winds that drive the wind chill down below -30.

Snow can continue to occur right through the end of April, but on the other end, 80-degree days can begin in late March. Autumn weather is similar. Keene's first snowfall usually occurs in early November, though the city can also see 60-degree days into mid November. Significant rain events can occur in the spring and fall. For example, record rainfall and flooding with the axis of heaviest rain (around 12") near Keene occurred in October 2005. Another significant flood event occurred in May of the following year.

Keene Music Festival
In late August or early September the city hosts the Keene Music Festival. Several stages are located throughout the downtown area during the day's events, which are free to the public and sponsored by locally-owned businesses. Visitors, mostly from the local community, roam the city's sidewalks listening to the dozens upon dozens of bands.
  • The 1949 movie Lost Boundaries, starring Mel Ferrer, tells the true story of a black Keene physician who passed as white for many years. The film won the 1949 Cannes Film Festival award for best screenplay.
  • Much of the 1995 movie Jumanji, starring Robin Williams, was filmed in Keene (in November 1994) - the movie's fictional town of Brantford. Frank's Barber Shop is a featured setting; as well as The Parish Shoe sign, which was temporarily painted for the film, was removed and then repainted as a reminder of the film.
  • Because Keene State offers a B.A. in Film Studies, Keene is also the location of many student films. A student film festival is usually hosted in the Mabel Brown Room in the Student Center at the end of each school year.
Music and theatre in Keene
Many community groups perform on a regular basis, including the Keene Chamber Orchestra, the Keene Chamber Singers, the Keene Pops Choir, and the Keene Jazz Orchestra.

The Cheshiremen Chorus, a local chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society, meet every Tuesday at 7pm at the United Church of Christ on Central Square.

Every year, the Keene branch of the Lions Clubs International performs a Broadway musical at the Colonial Theatre (a restored theatre dating back to 1924 — not to be confused with the Colonial Theatre in Boston), to raise money for the community. Other theatres and auditoriums include the new Keene High School Auditorium and the county's largest auditorium, the Larracey Auditorium at Keene Middle School. Keene Cinemas is the local movie theater located off of Key Road. The Putnam Arts Lecture Hall located on the campus of Keene State is also an excellent place to see films ranging from mainstream movies to brilliant obscure films.

Sports in Keene

Keene is home to the Keene Swamp Bats baseball team of the New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL). The Swamp Bats play at Alumni Field in Keene during June and July of each summer. The Swamp Bats are two-time league champions (2000, 2003) and are consistently near the top of the NECBL in attendance, having led the league in 2002, 2004, and 2005.

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Blais & Associates, Realtors®    32 Monadnock Hwy.     Keene, NH 03431       Phone (603) 352-1972       Fax (603) 352-0545

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