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N.H. students want apple cider to be tops in state

By Norma Love
Associated Press / October 20, 2009

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CONCORD, N.H. - Moxie is the official beverage in Maine. It’s coffee milk in Rhode Island and cranberry juice in Massachusetts.

But there is none in New Hampshire, and some elementary school students in Jaffrey want to change that.

Last year, three students came up with the idea of naming apple cider as the state beverage. The students wrote and persuaded state Representative Bonnie Mitchell to sponsor legislation.

Mitchell said yesterday that she spoke to the students’ class last year about their power to get laws passed.

She pointed out that schoolchildren successfully lobbied lawmakers to name the pumpkin as the state fruit three years ago and the Chinook as the state dog this year.

Mitchell said she expects the Jaffrey Grade School students to take an active role as the bill goes through the legislative process.

Chuck Souther, owner of Apple Hill Farm in Concord, sees it as a wonderful civics lesson that might help growers.

“Recognition always helps,’’ he said. “Is it going to make more sales? Gosh, I’d like to think so.’’

Governor John Lynch was not ready to say whether he will support apple cider.

The students should go through the legislative process first, he said yesterday.

“Then I’ll deal with it,’’ he said.