Riverfest Nashua celebrates local veterans

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Nashua Veterans gathered at the 2024 Riverfest enjoying an afternoon of music and camaraderie at Liquid Therapy. They represent 40 years of combined service to the country. From left, Frank Weeks, 10 year Navy vet; Ed Spinney, 8 year Army vet; Jason Lindsay, 2 year Air Force vet; Mark Rutter, 11 year Army vet; Jarred Rivera 5 year Army vet; and Barry Beaumont, 4 year Air Force vet. Photo/ Dan Splaine Photography

On the afternoon of July 4th before the crowds swarmed into town for the fireworks display at Holman Stadium a smaller celebration was held in downtown Nashua. The 2024 Nashua Riverfest held at Liquid Therapy was a show of support for local veterans and to honor their service.

Organized by local nonprofit Involved to Impact and Nashua Veterans Promise the event provided free meals and music for veterans from all service branches and all eras. About 40 vets enjoyed the food and mingled with the holiday crowd at the busy brewery.

Rock band, The Whole Loaf performing at the 2024 Riverfest on July 4th in Nashua. Photo / Dan Splaine Photography

Local arts group The Midnight Creative Collaborative organized the entertainment for the event and four musical acts performed. Co-founder Eleanor Luna was eager for the group to participate in the event and to recognize the service of vets. She noted the Riverfest was designed as a low-key alternative to the fireworks out of consideration for their guests.

“We have a huge veterans community here and want them to feel included and part of our community.  Many vets have PTSD and did not want to deal with the fireworks so we opened up this live music event for them so they could enjoy themselves and feel honored and still be part of the day.  Music is a feel-good thing, it makes people connected and we want veterans to feel connected,” Luna said.

For Liquid Therapy owner Stan Tremblay, the decision to host the event was easy. When Tom Lopez from Involved to Impact told him an alternative location fell through he stepped up. For him, it was a way to help vets and honor the service of his father, a Vietnam veteran.  

For the gathered veterans it was a moment of appreciation and an afternoon of good music. For the organizers and sponsors it was a sincere effort to honor their service.

Mission  accomplished

The 2024 Nashua Riverfest at Liquid Therapy in downtown Nashua on July 4th. Photo / Dan Splaine Photography