Sunday, December 27, 2009

Calling All Chocoholics for the Chocolate Festival 2-28-10!

If you like chocolate as much as I do, you'll love cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, or driving to various inns and businesses to be rewarded with a myriad of chocolate goodies!  

The Buttonwood Inn already booked guests for this popular annual event on Sunday, February 28, 2010.  You can click on the following link or visit our website under Winter Packages - 20th Annual Chocolate Festival: 

Saturday, December 26, 2009


Christmas Day may be behind us but the Inn is as 'Chistmassy' as ever with the smell of Paula's freshly baked scones and her baked cheddar cheese omelette. Our skiers today are headed to Wildcat and Bretton Woods for some downhill and cross-country skiing, respectively. The newest picture album addition on Facebook is chock full of Chritmas shots of the Inn taken yesterday. Hope you like them!!

Paula and I were able to connect with our family's annual Christmas get-together in New Jersey via Webcam and it was so wonderful to be able to participate in the blessing before dinner even if we were not there physically.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Have a Cranapalooza New Year's Holiday

Cranapalooza - It's a Festival!

When the sun goes down in North Conway and the lights illuminate the trails of Cranmore, the festivities begin. Saturday nights from Dec. 26, 2009 to March 13, 2010, guests will enjoy a variety of events throughout the resort in addition to top-to-bottom night skiing and tubing. Returning for its sixth season, Cranapalooza is a festival of music, entertainment and games with North Conway's favorite penguin, C-More. Additional Cranapalooza dates include a special New Year's Eve edition on Thurs., Dec. 31, 2009 and Wed., February 17, 2010. the Buttonwood is right down the street from the Cranmore Ski Resort. Still time to reserve for our extra Special New Year's Eve Package so don't delay.

Cranapalooza kicks off the season on December 26, 2009. As guests finish up a day of skiing and riding or arrive for the nighttime festivities, they can enjoy activities beginning at 2 p.m. Activities change weekly and include fireworks on select dates, games with C-More, magicians and puppets, fireworks, face painting, hypnotists, live entertainment, hot chocolate and s'mores around the fire pit and Après Ski with live music in Zip's Pub.

Another popular activity coming back for this winter is the spectacular fireworks display set off over the slopes. Fireworks will light the skies at 7:30pm on the following dates: Dec. 31, Jan. 16, Jan. 30, Feb. 13, Feb. 20, and Mar. 6th. Our guests can even view them from our front porch or out our dining room window along with the lights on the Cranmore Ski slopes.

Cranapalooza lift tickets are just $29 and are valid for night skiing for all ages from 2 - 8p.m. Night skiing is offered on 11 trails and 3 lifts for all ability levels, including the Darkside and Other Side Terrain Parks, Beginner Basin, South Slope, North Slope, Hurricane and more. Cranmore's top rated Arctic Blast Tubing Park is also open Saturday and holiday evenings until 9pm. The Buttonwood has discounted tubing tickets for our guests too!

Want the best value for night time activities? Buy the new Super Slider ticket. This all-inclusive ticket covers night skiing (2-8pm), two hours of snow tubing (anytime between 2-9pm), and two hours of Fun Zone admission (between 3-8pm). Tickets are valid for all ages and must be used by one individual on one date. The Super Slider ticket is only for sale on Cranapalooza dates.

Want to know what's going on at the next Cranapalooza? It's all listed here on their events calendar.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Santa's Village north of the Buttonwood

There's is a lot going on in the Valley and here abouts over the Christmas and New Year's Holidays. Besides the obvious skiing you can visit Santa's reindeer at Santa's Village north of the Buttonwood and have a holly Jolly old time with the big bearded guy in the red suit!

Just an hour from North Conway you can experience a day filled with wonderfully themed rides, great shows, Santa and his reindeer. Oh What Fun!
One low admission includes unlimited use of all the rides and shows for the entire day and if you come in within 3 hours of closing and you can return another day free of charge.
With all there is to see and do at Santa's Village, who wouldn't go!
Santa's Village is open from Memorial Day weekend through the summer and over the fall and holidays too!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Starry Starry Night at the Buttonwood

Beautiful night with a crescent moon and the constellation Orion is lookiing crisp in the southeastern sky. The telescope is set up on the back porch pointing towards the big dipper. Cold as it is outside there is something about trying to find a heavenly object that we haven't seen before that just seems to negate the cold. Of course this picture of us with the telescope was taken in the spring but it's the same scope that we use to peruse the heavens.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Christmas and New Years Specials at The Buttonwood Inn

Prepping for the Christmas and New Year's Eve visitors now that Polar Express is over. Our guests are going to have a great time with special treats and offerings here and in the Mount Washington Valley. There are still fireplace rooms and a double jacuzzi room available for the Christmas weekend and We are ...even running a special discount on the Chamber of Commerce's website so there are many reasonable options for those who haven't firmed up their plans yet. Take a look at our New Year's Eve package. It's sure to please!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Chocolate Chip Pancake Time!

Paula's special chocolate chip pancakes had the kids beaming this morning and the parents loved their corn meal pancakes all with sausages and hot maple syrup and a freshly cut fruit salad starter. During December we also add our Polar Express juice special, a mix of pomegranate and cranberry to the menu along with our... Mt. Surprise Sunrises (OJ & Pom) and Sunsets (OJ & Cran). The kids and parents are headed to the Cranmore snowtubing park today and to the free Mt. Washington Observatory museum and shoppes in North Conway. 

Friday, December 11, 2009

Visitor's to the Buttonwood Inn

Little Lia (4) just arrived with her parents. They will be taking the Polar Express train this evening from the North Conway railway station and is she excited! During the tour of the Inn I showed them the Mt. Surprise room. We have the movie "Polar Express" playing on the 50 inch plasma and Lia's little eyes were wide... as they could be when she saw it. Lia and her mom also liked the New England Village ceramic houses in the Mt. Surprise room, all lit up with a snowy background. Guess what---our family of 6 just arrived. Alexander, Olivia, Jarred, and Aidan have been here before with their parents. They are like part of the family having first visited us back in 2007. They will be taking the Polar Express train ride tomorrow. By the way the Polar Express movie is based on the 1985 book written by Chris Van Allsburg.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Buttonwood Inn - Special Holiday Gift Offer

Happy Holidays from The Buttonwood Inn!

Paula and I would like to extend to you this special offer.

Show Someone How Much You Care!

Special Holiday Gift Offer!

A memorable gift for that someone special. Give them the pleasure of a stay in a "magical place"! Enjoy blissfully old fashioned hospitality, cozy fireplaces, and gourmet breakfasts.

The Buttonwood Inn

For every $100 spent in gift certificates, we will give you $20 toward your next stay in 2010!

Our gift certificates can be used at any time for Holiday and winter weekends or for special packages such as: (Click on any of the following links for some examples)

New Year's Eve 2009 Package
Harvest to Holiday Shop 'til You Drop Package
"Ski It Your Way" Ski Tickets, Dinner and More
Ski & Stay Mid-Week Special

Or for one of our special theme weekends like:

Romance Package
March Maple Madness
Ghosts and Goblin Trail Package

Contact us toll free at 1-800-258-2625 by December 18, 2009
to ensure the mailing reaches you or the person receiving the gift certificate before the 25th.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The Mt Washington Valley Arts Association (MWVAA)

NORTH CONWAY 12/7/09: The Mt Washington Valley Arts Association (MWVAA) is featuring a special Bob DeIulio Exhibit and Molly Doe Wensberg Raffle during its "Affordable Art Show and Sale" through December 20, at the MWV Visual Arts Center, 16 Norcross Place.

As part of the MWVAA "Affordable Art Show and Sale," there is a tribute exhibit of deceased member Bob DeIulio's work. DeIulio's work features the vitreous flux medium. Vitreous flux is a watercolor medium where water is first loaded onto an impervious surface with pigment then being added. The pigment is then manipulated using a variety of tools to create expressionistic images. DeIulio was a student of David Baker, the originator of this unique watercolor method. The exhibit includes original framed worked and matted prints.

Member Molly Doe Wensberg, an award-winning oil painter donated an oil painting, "A View Toward Jackson" with a retail value of $2500 to the MWVAA to raffle off as a fundraiser. Raffle tickets are available at the MWV Visual Arts Center in Norcross Place during the "Affordable Art Show and Sale." Tickets are $5 each or three for $10. The winning raffle ticket will be drawn on Sunday, November 20at 4PM.

The "Affordable Art Show and Sale" runs Friday through Sunday through December 20, from 10AM to 5PM (4PM on December 20) at the MWV Visual Arts Center, 16 Norcross Place. The show and sale features the work of many local two and three dimensional fine artists, artisans and craftspeople with all work priced from $10 to $250.

For complete information on all events at the MWV Visual Arts Center visit the center online at or call 603-356-ARTS (2787). The MWV Visual Arts Center is the place to see, learn and connect with the visual arts.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Two Great New Cookbooks

While on vacation recently, I read two new cookbooks in my daughter's New York apartment.  This past Fall, I watched the series on PBS with Mario Batali, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Mark Bittman traveling through Spain enlightening us about its culture, history, and cuisine.  Since I missed an episode or two, the book closely follows the series and also includes the recipes, many that are easy to prepare based on Mario's detailed explanations.  As in Batali's previous cookbook, "Molto Mario," the recipes are easy and fool-proof in producing authentic Italian dishes.

If you're planning a cocktail party or just want to create a special drink or appetizer, Kelly Casey, matches up the apps to the sips (cocktails).  There are trendy drink recipes and different variations on the classic drink recipes.  She also makes recommendations on glassware and barware.

I typically purchase used, like new or new, books online either from Amazon or Barnes & Noble often at half to two-thirds of the cost of a new cookbook.

Happy Cooking!

Ghost & Goblins Inn-to-Inn Halloween Tour - October 2009

This year, our 2009 Ghost & Goblins Traill Inn-to-Inn Tour brought the most costumed guests to many of our inns in the Mt. Washington Valley on Halloween.  Participants were serious about winning the game for first prize of a two-night stay at any one of our Bed & Breakfast Inns Mt. Washington Valley, including several other gifts donated by the inns.  They also had the opportunity to sample various sweet and savory treats and view the interiors of each inn.  To view more information about this event, please click on the above links and contact us to book your 2010 Ghost & Goblins Trail package now.

Mountain Garden Club's Annual Holiday Boutique "Winter Wonderland"

The Mountain Garden Club's Annual Holiday Boutique "Winter Wonderland" is on Saturday, December 12th at the North Conway Community Center next to Schouler Park in North Conway Village. The doors open at 9:30 AM and the boutique lasts until everything is gone. It usually sells out by 11:30 AM, so come early! As always..., there will be a wonderful selection of seasonal decorations, ornaments and holiday gifts, all made by the Mountain Garden Club members, as well as the ever-popular Shabby Chic table with slightly used "treasures." The Children’s Table will feature holiday presents, such as jewelry, scarves, candles, knick knacks, non-breakable ornaments, etc., for Mom, Dad, siblings, relatives, teachers, etc. All these items can be purchased for just 25 or 50 cents. There will also be outdoor seasonal hanging baskets that can be reused in the spring, indoor holiday greens baskets and centerpieces, boxwood trees, candles with decorated boxwood bobeches, hydrangea wreaths, fragrant paperwhite narcissus and dramatic amaryllis. The proceeds from the Holiday Boutique benefit the Mountain Garden Club's Valley-wide beautification projects, the MGC Alice T. Madden Scholarship Fund and Jen’s Friends.cost:free

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Buttonwood Inn Eco-Friendly Measures

In 2008, The Buttonwood Inn became certified by the New Hampshire Sustainable Lodging & Restaurant Program. Our goal is to provide you, our customer, with the best service, hospitality, and attention to detail possible, while preserving the natural beauty and healthy environment of the White Mountains of New Hampshire by continuing our efforts to be "green". We hope that you will also join us for your benefit and that of future generations. Note that as we continue to add more eco-friendly measures reducing our carbon footprint on the Earth, these are some of the initiatives we’ve implemented so far:

Learn more at Buttonwood Inn Initiatives

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

25th Worldwide SketchCrawl at the Mount Washington Valley Visual Arts Center

Do you love to sketch? Be a part of the 25th Worldwide SketchCrawl from 10AM – 2PM. Bring your own materials - basic paper and something to draw with.

Come to the MWV Visual Arts Center and “register.” Stay and draw the still life setup or go off and sketch whatever you want, with whomever you want. Come back to the Visual Arts Center at 1:30 and share with others what you have sketched. We’ll take a group photo of the participants. Images from the day will be uploaded to This is a great activity for everyone, no matter the age or ability. Everyone is welcome!

The SketchCrawl, an international drawing marathon, is the brainchild of San Francisco artist Enrico Casarosa. It started several years ago when Casarosa wanted to spend a day of intense drawing around his city. Casarosa realized how much more fun this day would have been if he had had some company. As a result, the SketchCrawl has evolved into a worldwide event with people of every age and ability participating. There are no rules. Anyone can participate, be it to draw for 20 minutes or the full day and any level of ability is welcome from veteran artists to first time sketchers of any age. To read more about it, visit
Time: November 21, 2009 from 10am to 2pm
Location: MWV Visual Arts Center
Street: 16 Norcross Place
City/Town: North Conway, NH
Phone: 603-356-2787
Event Type: activity
Organized By: Claudia Needham

Friday, November 13, 2009

Harvest to Holiday Shop 'Til You Drop Package

SHOPPING - Harvest to Holiday Shop 'Til You Drop Package  Web Link

November 1 to December 31, 2009     Call toll free - 1-800-258-2625 or email: Email The Buttonwood

Ladies, while your men focus on their football pools and how the Patriots will do, you'll have the time of your life shopping in tax-free Mt. Washington Valley, NH.

Not only do more than 200 national brand name outlets, boutiques, galleries and craft shops await, but now through Christmas, lodging properties throughout Mt. Washington Valley will celebrate the Harvest to Holidays promotion, offering added savings for shopping sprees.

Fashionable brightly colored purses dubbed Shopping Survival Kits come complete with dining and shopping coupons, small gifts, energy bars, samples and more, which await those who book a Harvest to Holiday getaway at participating lodging properties in Mt. Washington Valley.

Why not make a weekend of it? Grab a girlfriend and come to the Valley for a weekend shopping spree! This year plan your getaway to coincide with some of the special shopping events taking place in Mt. Washington Valley during November and December.

December 5: Settlers' Green Outlet Village Holiday Tree Festival -
beautiful holiday music, festive trees, hot chocolate, and much more.

Package Includes:
One or more nights lodging weekdays and two on weekends
Full gourmet breakfast each morning
Afternoon tea and hot chocolate with Paula's baked treats
A Shopping Survival Kit filled with savings, samples, energy bars & more.

Package Rates: Rates are based on double occupancy & vary by room type
Weekdays (Sun. - Thurs.) One night for two from $129 Two nights from $239
Weekend (Fri. - Sun.) Two nights for two from $289

Celebrate the Holidays at The Buttonwood

We still have a few tickets left for the Polar Express Event the weekends of December 12th and 19th. Come on up and treat your family to this special Christmas Holiday spectacular! Bring the Grandparents too and let them know you remember when they treated you!!

POLAR EXPRESS PACKAGES for 2009   Buttonwood Inn Polar Express Package Link

Packages Available December 12 - 20

The annual Polar Express Event is a unique experience based on the Award-winning book by Chris Van Allsburg.

This is the most popular area holiday event that originated here in North Conway. The train leaves from the Victorian train station near the Green downtown taking children and their families to the North Pole.

Saturday, October 10, 2009



Contact: Bill and Paula Petrone, 1-800-258-2625


North Conway, New Hampshire -- The Buttonwood Inn on Mt. Surprise of North Conway, New Hampshire, was recognized for its distinctive food in the annual Best of Awards, 2009-2010. The Best of Awards are based upon a qualitative and quantitative review of the nearly 100,000 independent reviews submitted to, the leading online B&B directory and reservation network worldwide.

" surveys show that independent reviews are the most important factor when choosing a B&B. In fact, according to's most recent survey, 96% of consumers consider reviews to be somewhere between important and essential when selecting a place to stay, and 12% will not make a reservation at a property without them. We're delighted that inngoers concur that The Buttonwood Inn is deserving of its accolades from travelers," explained's Sandy Soule, one of the most highly recognized authors and a spokeswoman for the B&B industry. "Clearly, the Buttonwood Inn earned its stellar reviews from inngoers for their quality accommodations, breakfasts, amenities, and wonderful hospitality and service," commented Soule.

"It's a true honor to be chosen for a Best of award, and we thank our guests for the positive reviews that resulted in this award, stated Bill and Paula Petrone, The Buttonwood innkeepers. "It is gratifying that our guests took the time to share their comments about our culinary flair and delicious breakfasts in addition to the hospitality, accommodations, breakfasts and attention to the details which set The Buttonwood Inn apart," commented Bill and Paula. Here's an excerpt from one of our reviews: “Over the past few years I have visited the Buttonwood Inn…at least 4 or 5 times. Each time I have been delighted with the tranquility of the Inn, the friendliness of Bill and Paula, the proprietors, and the care they take in making the Buttonwood Inn such a perfect place for rest and relaxation…

And did I mention the breakfasts?! Paula is an excellent cook. Her breakfasts will keep you going until her rich and varied cookies or brownies turn up in the late afternoon. Bill serves the breakfast in a cheerful manner and is always available to offer advice about sightseeing in the region and interesting animal sightings…” 

About The Buttonwood Inn on Mt. Surprise: The Buttonwood Inn on Mt. Surprise, a North Conway, New Hampshire country inn bed and breakfast, is nationally recognized for our quality of innkeeping providing the best in service, hospitality, and attention to detail. Situated on more than five secluded acres of field and forests, two miles from the village of North Conway, NH, The Buttonwood Inn offers a peaceful, rural setting with back door access to mountain hiking trails, including an outdoor hot tub and heated pool. An 1820s farmhouse with ten individually decorated guestrooms, the inn retains its comfortable country atmosphere with wide pine floors, antiques, quilts, and stenciling. Each morning you can enjoy our gourmet breakfast served in our large Dining Room or enjoy our afternoon tea service with fresh baked treats in one of our common rooms in front of our wood-burning fireplaces. Phone: 1-800-258-2625 or visit our website at

For a complete list of all winners, including regional and international Best of Award winners, please visit and click Winners 2009-2010.

Founded in 1995, is highly recommended by The New York Times, Real Simple, Forbes, Travel & Leisure, USA TODAY and many others. To learn about more nearly 9,000 other perfect choices for your next B&B getaway, visit, the leading online bed and breakfast directory and reservation network worldwide. A variety of search functions and extensive maps enable inngoers to find the perfect B&B. Travelers can make reservations online, purchase The Getaway Gift Card from, welcomed at over 4,000 B&Bs in the U.S. and Canada, read up-to-date trip reports on The Blog, read and write independent reviews, and post questions on expert-hosted message boards.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

White Mountain Fall Foliage Weekend

This is going to be one unbelievable weekend! The Mount Washington Valley is visited by more people on the Columbus Day weekend than all others. We can say with certainty that the foliage is living up to the promise of a spectacular show. The sunny,, crisp skies and the hint of moisture on the leaves seems to make the trees glow even brighter in reds, ochres, and shades of yellow and orange. There is still time to visit as the prediction is for fall colors through the end of the month in many of the forest areas nearby.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


2 DAY STAY - 25% Off 2nd DAY !
3 DAY STAY - 50% Off 3rd DAY!!
NOW THRU October 1st, 2009
Currently rated as one of the TOP bed and breakfasts in New Hampshire and the #1 Bed & Breakfast in North Conway on
All Packages Include:
Full gourmet breakfast daily
Paula's late afternoon tea with baked treats
Use of our hot tub "under the stars"
Use of our heated outdoor pool (seasonal)

Call Toll Free to reserve now! 1-800-258-2625

Based on dbl occupancy/rates vary by room type/taxes & gratuities not included. Subject to availability. Good for advance reservations ending no later than 10/01. Two or more nights required.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

North Conway Vacations at The Buttonwood Inn

A NH Select Registry B&B Inn once called The Hide-Away Lodge

The ski trains once deposited visitors in downtown North Conway and the innkeepers would arrange for transportation, often horse-drawn wagons, to bring guests to their country accommodations. Well, the ski trains may be gone but thankfully many of the original ski lodges and country inns live on. Such is the case at the Buttonwood Inn. In decades past, the Buttonwood Inn was known as The Hide-Away Lodge - a large New England home that welcomed White Mountain visitors, many of which came to ski nearby Mt. Cranmore.

Today, the lodge is known as the Buttonwood Inn and is now owned and operated by Bill and Paula Petrone. The innkeepers have a genuine love for this region of New Hampshire and an appreciation for this historic property. Recent additions and renovations include; free wireless internet for guests, updated common areas, a new outdoor heated hot tub and a large, in-ground, heated swimming pool.

The Buttonwood Inn is popular year 'round. In winter, downhill and cross-country skiing is the primary draw, though some vacationers prefer to relax and enjoy the romantic surroundings. Summer in the White Mountains brings sightseers, shoppers, and hikers. The inn is situated at the base of Mount Surprise in North Conway. A hiking trail extends from the backyard of the inn all the way to the peak of the mountain.
Destination Meetings
One of the services now available at the inn is to have your group, company, or organization meeting here. Innkeeper, Bill Petrone will handle all the details for you and be sure you have everything you need for a most unique and productive meeting or conference.
A NH Select Registry Inn

After checking in at the Buttonwood Inn, you are informed about the inn's affiliation with Select Registry. Select Registry (AKA Distiguished Inns of North America) is a non-profit association of more than 400 lodging properties (mostly inns, B&Bs, and small hotels) . Select Registry was founded in 1972 and members are required to pay annual dues, as well as pass quality assurance inspections.

Mt. Washington Valley Vacations

The Buttonwood Inn is just minutes from the center of North Conway and central to most of the area's popular attractions. One of the most popular NH vacation destinations is the magnificent Mt. Washington Valley. The region features unique attractions found no where else in the world. Natural geological formations like Diana's Bath, and summer attractions like the Mt. Washington Cog Railway, Storyland, and The Mt. Washington Auto Road are just a few of the regions gems.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Guests at The Buttonwood and where they Hail from...

The Buttonwood Has been fortunate to have many wonderful guests visit us from around the world and from nearby towns. One thing they all seem to have in common is a love of adventure, seeing new places, and meeting new people.

This past weekend for example two of our guests where from Grange-over-Sands which is a town by the sea or depending on the state of the extensive tide, sands, in Cumbria, England. They live south of Lake Windermere which is the largest natural lake in England. It has been one of the country’s most popular places for holidays and summer homes since 1847, when the Kendal and Windermere Railway built a branch line to it. The word "Windermere" translates as "Vinandr's lake", from the Old Norse name Vinandr and Old English mere, meaning lake.

Another couple was from Victoriaville Quebec Canada a town not far from Montreal. This adventurous pair trravelled via motorcycle to the Buttonwood and also to the top of Mount Washington.

We rarely get motorcyclists here but this happened to be a weekend when another coupl on Motorcycle arrived. They were from Pineville, a city in Rapides Parish, Louisiana. It is adjacent to the city of Alexandria. They also made the trek up Mt. Washington. The town of Pineville contains the Louisiana Maneuvers Museum which provides insight into the huge maneuvers that prepared the United States for World War II and promoted the career of General Dwight D. Eisenhower because of his organizational skills.

Two of our guests from Alexandria Virginia left this morning for Bar Harbor Maine. The town of Alexandria is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 128,283. Located along the Western bank of the Potomac River, Alexandria is approximately 6 miles (9.6 kilometers) south of downtown Washington, D.C. Like the rest of Northern Virginia, as well as central Maryland, modern Alexandria has been shaped by its proximity to the nation's capital.

Why not come up to visit and add to the geographical diversity that makes life at the Buttonwood so interesting?

Monday, August 31, 2009

Santa Claus is Coming to Town!

The annual Polar Express Event is a unique experience based on the Award-winning book by Chris Van Allsburg. This is the most popular area holiday event that originated here in North Conway. The train leaves from the Victorian train station near the Green downtown taking children and their families to the North Pole.
Polar Express Tickets are limited and sell out quickly so reserve early!

Our Package Includes:

  • One or two nights lodging
  • Full breakfast each morning—some menu items are chocolate chip buttermilk pancakes, yeasted Belgian waffles, fresh fruit salad topped with raspberry sauce, or Buttonwood special doughnut muffins
  • Afternoon tea service, hot chocolate with marshmallows, and Paula’s hand-decorated sugar cookies or other traditional family Holiday cookies
  • Polar Express tickets for select departures from the original North Conway train station
  • Watch the Polar Express movie on our new 50-inch Plasma TV and listen to the Liam Neeson recording in our toasty Mt. Surprise Room warmed by our new wood-burning fireplace insert
  • Discounted snow tubing tickets at Cranmore Mountain Resort (minutes away)
Call toll free to reserve now 1-800-258-2625

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Stay and Stargaze Special - VEGA SPECIAL

To all you stargazers out there the Buttonwood is offering a special this month. Lodge with us for two nights or more and use our 10 Inch Meade Schmidt-Newtonian to view the wonders of the New Hampshire night sky!
We are in a low light pollution area and now is a perfect time to view the Constellation Lyra which includes the Northern night skys' second brightest star, VEGA. Nearly directly overhead we can count on the lowest possible amount of atmospheric disturbance and the current weather conditions have been nearly perfect for viewing.

Bring your own scope if you like as our viewing area is quite large and can easily support multiple setups.

We'll have the Mount Surprise media room setup with our 50 inch plasma to do some pre-night viewing of the constellation and it's multiple targets like: The Ring Nebula M57 which is a classic planetary nebula. Vega, Altair, and Deneb form The Summer Triangle.

The Ring Nebula M57
The Ring belongs to a class of objects known as "planetary nebulae" which have nothing whatever to do with planets. They were called that back in the days of crude telescopes because their small disk shapes resembled planets and the name has stuck. A planetary nebula is actually a large cloud of gas which was previously expelled from the central star. Having lost much mass to the cloud, the central star compresses to a very dense and hot star that illuminates the gas cloud via ultraviolet radiation in much the same way as electric current lights up neon in a sign.

Monday, August 24, 2009

GOLF PACKAGE - Play ANY DAY throughout the season

This is a golfer's dream.

Play eighteen holes of golf at your choice of eight participating area courses offering spectacular views. Three courses are in our immediate area with others located throughout the White Mountains from Jefferson to Effingham. Choose to play New Hampshire's oldest course, a challenging course with elevated tees, or one winding through the traditional New England village of Jackson along the Ellis and Wildcat rivers.
North Conway Country Club, North Conway - 18 holes     
Wentworth Golf Course, Jackson - 18 holes
Hales Location Golf Course, North Conway - 9 holes
Waumbek Country Club, Jefferson - 18 holes
Androscoggin Valley Country Club, Gorham - 18 holes
Mountain View Country Club, Whitefield - 9 holes
Indian Mound Country Club, Ossipee - 18 holes
Province Lake Golf Club, Effingham - 18 holes

With 126 holes to play, one night is just not long enough!

Package includes:
  • Lodging at our Select Registry Inn
  • Full gourmet breakfast each morning
  • Afternoon tea service (including fresh squeezed lemonade or iced tea) with Paula's baked treats
  • Play 18-Holes of Golf at your choice of one of the participating eight courses including golf cart
Call for details at 1-800-258-2625 and mention Golf Any Day Package!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Dining near the Buttonwood Inn

Choose from a wide variety of dining choices in the White Mountains, from traditional New England fare to continental cuisine, from pizza with pizzazz to spicy ethnic dishes. No matter where you choose, you'll be sampling a true taste of the White Mountains. Here are just a few of our favorites:

The Restaurant at the White Mountain Cider Co. is Chef owned by Culinary Institute of America graduates Teresa and Scott Stearns.
The restaurant has become a local and visitors favorite alike. The original farmhouse built in the 1890's has been restored and maintains many of it's original details. The interior of the house has been renovated to accommodate spacious dining areas that also include a separate room and intimate loft for parties, rehearsal dinners and special events.
Thompson House Eatery
The Thompson House is a restaurant in the beautiful mountain village of Jackson NH.

The heart and soul of the original Thompson House home was a massive center chimney with 3 working fireplaces and a bake oven. The main fireplace, a Rumford style, with an arched fireback was used as the kitchen “stove.” The large crane and gutchens held the cook pots and laundry pots. The bake oven had its’ own flue and ash pit. The ashes were saved for such things as the making of soap and keeping slippery walkways passable. The other 2 fireplaces provided heat and auxiliary cooking space. Fires were kept burning 24hours a day. This massive structure is held up by huge granite block cribbing. The fireplaces and bake oven have been completely restored to their original condition.
Owners of the Bernerhof Inn, George and June Phillips, along with guest chefs will cater to your dining pleasures.
“We will, of course, continue to offer our famous Bernerhof Weiner Schnitzel, fondue and other Swiss delights,” stated Mrs. Phillips. “Often Inn guests will say for 3-4 nights and they will order the Schnitzel every night!” The Black Bear Pub will have an enhanced pub menu with unique sandwich items, soups and stews.
The newest edition to the Inn is the Cy Bear Lounge. With free WIFI available, inn guests will be able to catch up on email while enjoying late morning coffee or afternoon tea and snacks. The lounge will open to the public for refreshments from the pub in the late afternoon. Perfect for après ski as well!

May Kelly's Cottage

"An Old World Atmosphere Irish Bar and Restaurant" There is no way to describe the wonderful atmosphere inside May Kelly's. It is a place like no other. The food is outstanding, the price just right, and the friendliness overpouring not to mention the best poured Guiness in the Valley as far as this writer is concerned.
"Good food & good times" has been the motto at the Red Parka for more than 30 years. Family owned and operated, we want you to feel comfortable in the knowledge that every time you return, the quality of food and service will be consistent. Whether you are coming here for a great steak dinner, a refreshing beverage, or dancing in the Pub, our crew wants you to leave with a smile on your face.
Our Vision Statement"The owners, management and Staff of the Red Parka Steakhouse & Pub are committed to providing our guests with hospitable service and great food prepared with genuine caring for your satisfaction. We are a responsible, involved member of the community and have attained leadership in our industry by being true to our individual and innovative style."

We are proud of the casual, friendly ambience of our main dining room. Families are very important to us, and we strive to make your dining time together as much fun as possible. We have more high chairs than any restaurant around, and plenty of crayons. Ski and kayak videos are shown constantly in the area of the dining room where we seat our larger parties.

Hiking the Presidentials from The Buttonwood Inn

Just minutes from the Buttonwood Inn on Mopunt Surprise is The Presidential Range a mountain range located in the White Mountains of the state of New Hampshire, almost entirely in Coos County. The most notable summits of the range are named for prominent Americans, either public figures of the 18th and 19th centuries or Presidents.

The summits marked with an asterisk (*) are included on the peak-bagging list of 4,000-foot and higher mountains in New Hampshire; the others are excluded, in some cases because of lesser height and in others because of more technical criteria.

Aside from the notable summits, the geological Presidential Range contains a number of additional named peaks. Several of these peaks, drained on their west faces by the Dry River, are less accessible than the main and most visited ridge of the range and are therefore likely to be neglected, or mentioned as an afterthought, in discussing the range as whole.
Subsidiary peaks of Mount Washington: Ball Crag (6,106 ft); Nelson Crag (5,620 ft); Boott Spur (5,500 ft)

The Presidentials separate drainage via the Saco and Androscoggin Rivers into the Atlantic Ocean on the coast of Maine, from drainage into the Israel and Ammonoosuc Rivers, then into the Connecticut River, and then into Long Island Sound.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Kancamagus Highway Celebrates 50 Years

One of the most beautiful stretches of highway in the entire Northeast marks a milestone this summer and a two-day celebration is planned for the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Kancamagus Highway.

"The story of The Kancamagus Highway is one that has not really been told over the years and, as we have discovered in our research, there was never a celebration of its opening in the summer of 1959," said Jayne O'Connor, president of White Mountains Attractions in North Woodstock, which, along with the U.S. Forest Service, is coordinating a celebration of the anniversary. "It is very appropriate that, for the half century mark of this remarkable road, we do take time and celebrate it."

In 1959, when The Kanc, as it is affectionately called, was officially opened. The beauty of the road earned The Kanc a designation in 1996 as a National Scenic Byway from the U.S. Department of Transportation. At the time, it was the only such designation of a road in the entire Northeast. For information on the Kancamagus Highway celebration, visit

Watchable wildlife, Swift River, Dugway Picnic Area, Albany Covered Bridge, Passaconaway Historic Site, Hancock, Pemi, C.L. Graham Wangan Ground, and Sugar Hill Over-looks, Sabbaday Falls, Rocky Gorge Scenic Area, Lower Falls and Picnic Area, Greeley Ponds Scenic Area, Discovery Trail.

Saco Ranger Station and Russell-Colbath House, near Conway on the Kancamagus Highway, Lincoln Woods Ranger Station, White Mountains Visitor Center, North Woodstock.

The Kancamagus Highway stretches 34 1/2 miles from Conway in the east to Lincoln in the west. “The Kanc,” as it is known, traverses the White Mountain National Forest, crossing the flank of Mt. Kancamagus and climbing to nearly 3,000 feet in the process. Along its length are numerous hiking trails, federally designated Scenic Areas, and overlooks that provide travelers with truly breathtaking views.

The highway was named for Kancamagus, an early Indian Chief of the Penacook Confederacy, who tried to keep the peace between his people and the white settlers. Repeated harassment by the English eventually ended his efforts, and ultimately brought war and bloodshed to the region. In the early 1690’s, the tribes of the Confederacy scattered, and Kancamagus and his followers moved on, either to northern New Hampshire or—in some instances—to Canada.

It was Passaconaway, Kancamagus’ grandfather, who, in 1627, originally united more than 17 central New England Indian tribes into the Penacook Confederacy. Born as early as 1555 (or as late as 1580), it was Passaconaway who consolidated at least a dozen local tribes under the Pennacook leadership. Their names, spoken aloud even today, offer a haunting view of this region in an era before maps, boundaries, walls, fences and land ownership -- Wachusetts, Agawams, Wamesits, Pequawkets, Pawtuckets, Nashuas, Namaoskeags, Coosaukes, Winnepesaukes, Piscataquas, Winnecowetts, Amariscoggins, Newichewannocks, Sacos, Squamscotts, and Saugusaukes. Both action-hero and politician, Passaconnaway wove these depleted tribes together through marriages with his many children, through war, and through the sheer force of his argument, character and legendary skills. The story of one tribal marriage was popularized, with great exaggeration, by poet John Greenleaf Whittier in "The Bridal of Pennacook". A more accurate account by Thomas Morton, published in 1638, details the marriage of one of Passaconaway’s sons into a powerful tribe near Boston.

The rich flat land 12 miles north oof Conway is named for him. This community was first settled about 1790. The Russell-Colbath House is the only remaining 19th century homestead in the area, and serves as a US Forest Service Information Center. Visitors can learn about the history of the Passaconaway Valley, the families who lived in the house, domestic life in the 19th century, and view artifacts uncovered in recent archaeological excavations. The house, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is open to the public seasonally. Contact the Saco Ranger District for hours and more information.

Monday, August 10, 2009

NH Living Internet Magazine - "Happenings in the State"

If you are planning a vacation to New England, you can view information about New Hampshire on the NH Living Internet Magazine website. The Buttonwood Inn is featured in an article this month and we are located in the heart of all the Mt. Washington Valley's scenic areas and activities just minutes from North Conway. Go to:

Friday, August 7, 2009

True to form Jupiter has not disappointed this month and the weather has been pretty cooperative so far in the Mount Washington Valley. Using our 10 inch Meade Schmidt-Newtonian we've been able to get some awesome views of the planet and it's four moons, Io, Europa, and Ganymede, and Callisto. These four moons, discovered by Galileo Galilei and by Simon Marius in parallel, orbit between 400,000 and 2,000,000 km, and include some of the largest moons in the Solar System.

Odd thing is on Wednesday night August 5th I observed what I thought was a fifth moon just barely separated from Jupiter. It's alignment was consistent with the other four moon's but this was the first time I had seen it over the years of observing. I'm now beginning to wonder if it just wasn't a star aligned with the planet although I must say it did not appear to move out of view or change it's separation over the course of about an hour.

If anyone knows which moon this is I'd love to know. I did take a snap shot a while back that Alan Chaniewski was nice enough to "clean up" for me. I'm still working on the group I to0k on the 4th of this month and hope at least one of them displays that fifth "moon". Right now it doesn't look too hopeful since the camera I'm using doesn't really have the imaging capabilities to resolve the image.

Tonight is the 8th and it proves to be another good viewing night if the current weather is any indication. Looking forward to the Perseids. I've also been fooling around with a laptop and a simple Logitech webcam to see what if anything I can do with that. Here's hoping that on August 11th the skies are clear because the literature says that will be the best night for viewing Jupiter this year and there is a second bonus in that the Perseids will be active! ...The weeks best...

Happy Stargazing!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hike up Mt. Willard

Yesterday morning, Bill and I quickly finished our innkeeping duties and escaped up North on Route 302 to the trail head of Mt. Willard located behind the train station in Pinkham Notch. Though the rain clouds loomed overhead, we figured that equipped with our rain jackets and hats, we were covered for a cool summer rain. However, it only lasted a few minutes and we proceeded up Mt. Willard which is 2,804 feet to the cliffs overlooking the valley, Route 302, the scenic railroad tracks, Mt. Willey, and other mountains in the Presidentials.

It's a well worn trail of moderate degree and maintained by the Park Service. In fact, on the way down, we passed the rangers fixing the trail. The trail starts out flat passing over a stream and then begins the incline up the mountain. About two-thirds of the way up, we passed by a waterfall that pours into Centennial Pool. We proceeded at a moderate pace and reached the cliffs after 1 hour and 15 minutes (about 1.5 miles). As mentioned, the view was spectacular and hauntingly beautiful with the clouds looming over the tops of the mountains, but it wasn't raining. In fact, it's a popular trail and there were around 20 people up there admiring the view and listening to the wildlife in the forest below. Hiking the mountain trails in the Whites renews our spirits and reminds of the astounding beauty and wildlife around us.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Starry Starry Night at The Buttonwood Inn

Recently we had a visit from Alan Chaniewski, a photojournalist for the past 32 years, Alan is currently Chief Videographer at The Hartford Courant newspaper in Hartford, Connecticut. Most of his videos can be seen on their website at His recent blogs, including a very flattering one about the Buttonwood Inn's relationship to Astronomy, is posted on .

Alan and his wife Debbie visited many of the sights in the Mount Washington Valley and the photographs they have taken are, to say the least , outstanding. This photo of me and Paula next to the Inn's 10" Meade telescope set up in the backyard of the Buttonwood is an example of Alan's skill because anyone who can make me look good in a photo is certainly skilled.

Alan also shot some great pictures of our resident red squirrel and an awesome picture of a hummingbird in mid-flight which can be seen on his blog.

Here's an example of an image of Jupiter I took that Alan was able to enhance. I used the 10" Meade you see in the photograph . I had a very simple Canon A80 digital camera which I simply held up to the eyepiece of the telescope and voila!

The following image of the moon was taken the same night and is a good example of the the imaging capability of the Meade instrument. As a kid I always wanted a telescope and I was always looking up and marveling at the night sky. I was fortunate to find this great telescope as we were planning to move from Central New Jersey to our new home at the Buttonwood Inn atop Mount Surprise on the border of North Conway and Bartlett. I just knew that the skies were going to be awesome with hardly any of the light pollution experienced down south and I wasn't disappointed. Looking up at the Milky Way here can be breathtaking and when our guests look up from the outdoor hot tub on a clear, moonless night they are often speechless as they take in the grandeur of it all.

Paula and I welcome anyone who is interested in astronomy to come visit. Whether you bring your own telesope, camera with telephoto lens, or binoculars, or take in the sights through our equipment you are sure to have a wonderful experience in the White Mountains of New Hampshire at The Buttonwood Inn on Mount Surprise.

Happy Stargazing!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

A Good Read for a "Foodie"

My daughter gave me the book, "My Life in France" by Julia Child, which was written in her last days. It begins with her marriage to Paul Child and they resided in France in 1948 for several years in which she depicts in great detail (often with humor) the various areas of France, including the lives of the people they knew both in France and the United States. Julia Child graduated from Smith College but not with a culinary degree. After eating fine food in the local French restaurants, she became fascinated with the art and skill of cooking. She enrolled in the Cordon Bleu School of culinary arts and meticulously honed her craft with glorious days of cooking for her husband and friends.

What was also fascinating to me about the book was the way she describes the preparation of the dishes and the way they should taste. I was also intrigued by the years of recipe development for each dish, whereby it would be tested many times over to get it just right in terms of flavor and texture. This recipe testing was the basis for the tome, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking," written by Julia and her two French culinary expert friends, which was considered by many well-known chefs of the time to be the best and most comprehensive cooking guide for beginners and experts alike.

Check out to purchase either of these books:

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

There's never a shortage of Hummingbirds and other winged visitors to the Buttonwood between May and October. Our guests are treated to their acrobatics and constant highjinks at the crack of dawn while we are serving Paula's scrumptious breakfasts in our dining room. Two hummingbird feeders and the Buttonwood's lush gardens are just outside the dining room windows. The views of the feeders, gardens, forest trees, and bright blue skies serve as a panoramic background for the Hummingbirds aerial acrobatics. To watch the ruby-throated males (Archilochus colubris) perch protectively in the shrubs standing guard over "their" feeder then dart assertively after other hummingbird "clan" members is quite entertaining not to mention amazing. The females, with their green backs and white underside and tail corners tipped black and white, seem to laugh at the antics of the males especially when they perform a U-shaped flying pattern over and over again trying to impress the females or warn other males that this is their territory.

Bill keeps a supply of the nectar on hand at all times as the antics of these little "jet" powered avians burns up a lot of "fuel". They feast on the simple mixture consisting of one part sugar to two parts water and will remind Bill if he forgets to refill one by persistently sounding off with a string of chips and squeaks near the front porch rocking chairs. Guests often comment about the "whirring" sound of their tiny wings as they flit back and forth from feeder to nesting area or pursue each other in a constant attempt to "shoo" away hummingbirds from the competing nesting sites. They are the only birds that can fly backward and their wings, which beat dozens of times per second, make a humming sound which can't be mistaken.

The pictures above were taken by Bill at the hummingbird feeder closest to our dining room picture window near the front porch rocking chair area.

The following images were taken by one of our guests from England: