With School Underway, Labor Day Beachgoers Still Flock To Seacoast

Sep 3, 2018

Families fill Wallis Sands State Beach on Labor Day 2018.
Credit Annie Ropeik / NHPR

Governor Chris Sununu announced plans last week to study whether New Hampshire schools should be required to start after Labor Day.

But some families who flocked to Seacoast beaches on the holiday Monday said they don’t really care when school starts.

Dawn Szelog’s family had staked out a spot among the crowds at Wallis Sands State Beach in Rye by late morning, as the temperature neared 90.

"We live close enough, so it's easy for us to just come to the beach,” Szelog said.

Her kids’ school in Newmarket is under construction this year, so she says their start date was pushed until Tuesday after Labor Day.

It didn’t change their holiday plans, she says – just gave their kids a few extra days of vacation.  

Others, like Charlene Maniotis of Hudson, said they would opt for a later first day if possible.

The tide rolls in at Wallis Sands on Labor Day.
Credit Annie Ropeik / NHPR

"[Labor Day weekend] is like the last hurrah before summer's over,” Maniotis said. “It's a good family time, so school kind of interrupts that."

She says her kids’ first four days of school last week, before the holiday, were “just a big long intro,” with no homework.

“I think they’d be more productive if they didn’t start school and then have the long weekend, which slips them back into summer mode,” Maniotis said. “Like, if you’re going to start school, just start school.”

Sununu's commission will study whether delaying school start dates would boost student performance or tourism revenues.