2015-12-04 17:06:46.000 – Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Staff Meteorologist
Can you believe it has been a year already!? How are things in the North Pole? Hopefully all is well and the elves are putting the final touches on your “Nice List.”
Hopefully we landed on the said “Nice” list once again this year… I like to think that we acted kindly and respectfully to all our interns, guests, friends, families and pet (Marty Kitty). By the way, Marty sends his regards – he’s looking forward to the special treats
you traditionally bring him. We are eternally grateful that you have stopped giving him toys and cat nip; we were running out of space to store it all.
When you arrive at NH State Park
Sherman Adams Building, you will find that there have been some minor changes the building blueprints. So, hopefully ,like last year, your scout the Elf on the Shelf can give you a preliminary report to help you get to your milk and the freshly baked cookies for a quick in and out.
So once again, it is not too much trouble; could you get us one or more of the following?
1. A low-end notebook or chromebook – We typically provide our guest access to a community laptop to shoot a quick “guess-where-I’m-at” email/status update. So I know our guests would greatly appreciate this opportunity to continue.
3. A Cornhole set (aka, bean bag toss) – Our current set has seen better days. As a favorite indoor activity of ours, a new regulation size set would be greatly appreciated and used frequently. I even hear there are waterproof sets just in case we do get decent weather to play outside.
4. Office Supplies – We work like an office, so anything you can send that will cut costs for us is great: mechanical pencils, refill lead (0.5 or 0.7mm), pens, printer paper, etc.
5. Batteries – Preferably AAA or AA as our headlamps, flashlights and rescue/research equipment use these.
6. Gift cards – We go shopping for food weekly at Hannaford, Shaw’s or Walmart; but Lowes, Home Depot, or anywhere else in the Mt. Washington Valley is fine. Well, you know what’s around here.
7. Board Games – To keep us entertained as a group from time to time. We already love playing Cranium, Apples to Apples, Buzz Word, Things, Scrabble, and Loaded Questions. So if you know of any others like these, I know we’d love them. The more offbeat, the better it seems.
8. Candles – Preferably the soy-based, large jar type or tumblers like the ones from Soyfire for example. They liven up our living quarters and make it feel more like home.
9. Candy and gum – Since I know you eat a lot of cookies and sweets, I know you can relate. Can we ever really have enough?
10. VoD gift card – Since we don’t have cable, satellite, etc up here, we use Netflix and Hulu video on demand to provide us occasional entertainment for an hour or two in the evening.
11. Tripods – between all of us and our guests, it never seems like we have enough of these up here.
12. GoPro Hero – This would be useful in creating more time lapses as well as provide us a rugged camera to use in our environment.
13. Industrial strength tape – like Gorilla Tape because when winds are howling and something needs a quick fix, it’s always useful to have a really strong tape when you need it.
14. Cell modem – This one is for our IT Observer as he says it can greatly improve our transfer of information from the summit of Wildcat (weather data, webcams, etc).
15. A second generation Raspberry Pi – Not the kind you eat, but rather a mini computer! These are very handy for small IT tasks around the summit.
16. A cordless soldering iron – I’ve heard our IT Observer saying this would help him out greatly. We have a wired one, but wireless provides him a great range of work as you cut the cord and speeding up repairs of instruments and electronics on the summit.
17. Gift Donations – This will help lighten your bag of toys and help us out in our bold step forward in the coming years.
18. Observatory Memberships – Not for the Observers, but for other boys and girls on your list around the world. Since we are membership supported, these gifts would be the gifts that keep giving over the year. And this year, when you sign up or give a gift membership, you receive a FREE limited edition Observatory ornament for you and the misses to enjoy (or re-gift if you so choose).
19. Calendars – Not for us, but if you could purchase some from our online shop, it gives individuals on your list a great calendar or wall decor while providing us some financial support (two birds, one stone).
20. EMS Gear – Again, not for us as they have provided us with everything we need to stay warm and dry up here. This is a recommendation for if you plan on using EMS for gifts for others on your list.
21. Snow – the more the better! So far this season has been lackluster and below average. So some of the white stuff would make not only us happy but also all our surrounding ski resorts and winter activity industries happy.
22. Surprise us yet again! Sometimes the coolest gifts are the ones you didn’t think you needed.
That’s about it Santa. Remember that we don’t mind second hand items so long as they are in good, clean and usable condition. This helps out the environment and extends the life on perfectly usable stuff. We are really not picky and are just thankful for anything. Also, if you want a particular type of cookie and drink, like last year, you can post your preferences on our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram pages. We will try once again to keep the plate full, but you’ve had our volunteers’ cooking, it’s hard to pass up sometimes; so delicious! Like usual, we will ensure that we have everything in order for your arrival: a clear deck and path to lead you in, well greased doors, deiced stairs, clean living quarters, decorated Christmas tree (maybe another real one like last year?), and a full plate of cookies next to a glass of milk/nog/soy. And we will keep you posted on the forecast leading up to and on the night of your arrival. Safe travels and we look forward to seeing you yet again.
Thanks and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Ryan Knapp, Weather Observer/Staff Meteorologist