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News Release: Hanover Business Pivots Towards Values With Youth Programs

Hanover Business Pivots Towards Values with Youth Programs
Hanover, New Hampshire, March 1, 2024 The Fourth Place announces new and expanding youth programs at its 3 Lebanon Street Hanover location. The Upper Valley’s place for everyone who loves games, comics, and geek culture now offers a variety of youth programs for middle and high school students. Programs include weekly afternoon clubs for players of all skill levels including a Magic: The Gathering league and even ongoing Dungeons & Dragons campaigns, and upcoming weekly day camps during this summer's school vacation.
Owner Ian Struckhoff created The Fourth Place in downtown Hanover to be a home for people who love “geeky” hobbies and fandoms, and a place where everyone is welcome. The business exists to be a community space, event venue, and hangout, but financially functions mostly as a store, selling games, comics, pop culture, collectibles, and more.
Struckhoff focuses whenever possible on opportunities to run the business more as a social and event space, and less as a retail business, to increase the energy, time, and money being invested in the community that the Place was built to foster. An opportunity for that kind of growth has come with the introduction and rapid expansion of youth programs.
With encouragement from middle school student regulars and John LaCosse of the Richmond Middle School in Hanover, and with support from Brie Swenson from the Norwich Vermont Recreation department, The Fourth Place began youth programs in Fall 2023 with two After School D&D Clubs. Kids get to play in a weekly ongoing game of Dungeons & Dragons, and parents know they are in a safe and constructive space doing something collaborative and social together.
Brie Swenson shared, “I think that the Fourth Place is a valuable space for healthy youth engagement and activities. Having a place where they can express their creativity with peers has been outstanding. I have heard very positive feedback from the families we’ve seen involved.”
As of the winter 2024 season, the business hosts five After School D&D Club groups totaling 23 kids across three days, and an After School Magic League, with eight kids on Friday, an increase from two clubs in the Fall Season. With that growth, and based on feedback from kids and parents, these programs are expected to expand further for the Spring and Fall seasons—and with a new Summer Day Camp starting in June 2024!
Remi Perreard, a seventh grade student participant stated, “I like the 4th Place because I get to play with my friends after school one of my favorite games (D&D). Our game master is awesome!”
The camp is expected to achieve certification from the NH DHHS as a Youth Recreation Camp, which should allow lower-income families access to additional financial support, important to fulfilling the mission of ensuring that everyone is welcome. The program will run from 8:00 am until evening, Monday through Friday, with flexible scheduling both in terms of drop-off and pick-up times and choice of weeks. This is a semi-structured program, somewhere between the fully structured D&D Clubs with a dedicated activity being run by a staff member, and unstructured uses of the space where kids often hang out and play games.
This will allow the business to expand the hours where the space is used by members of the community, adding Monday and Tuesday hours to the current five-day schedule, and adding morning programming to a mostly afternoon and evening schedule originally designed to cater to after-school, after-work, and after dinner events. It also means giving local youth from different ages, grades, and even towns a chance to socialize and build a community around shared hobbies and interests, plus expanding staffing.
Families can find more information at, or by speaking with owner Ian Struckhoff at the Place in downtown Hanover. Early registration for Summer Camp placed by February 29 come with a 10% discount, and the final deadline is March 26. Registration for the spring season clubs are due by March 17.
Summer Club deadlines will be May 12, and Fall Club deadlines August 4.
The Fourth Place takes its name from the sense of belonging we get from a “third place” where a person feels at home, aside from home or work, and several geeky references. The mission of The Fourth Place is to create spaces where people feel at home sharing hobbies and passions, and where everyone is welcome. That’s happening with over forty free events per month, a free and welcoming public space, plus shopping, and now youth programs. The Fourth Place was founded in 2018 and opened in downtown Hanover in October 2022.

Contact Information:
Ian C. Struckhoff, Founder & Owner
The Fourth Place

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