All About Town: Concord Special Edition is a board game that takes you to the streets of Concord in 1977
|Published: 07-02-2023 3:00 PM
From the outside of the box, All About Town, Concord, N.H. Special Edition is a red, green, and yellow “fast moving, exciting game of travel.” Open it up, and it looks like a close relative of Monopoly — dice, pawns, trails of squares for your piece to travel along, colorful paper money, and blocked-off areas for “Hazard Cards” and “Travel Cards.” Look a little closer, and you are transported to the streets of Concord in 1977.
Apparently, this dusted-over board game is not the only one of its kind.
All About Town is a series of board games that were trending in the late 70s and early 80s. Each game was a partnership between a toy and game publishing company and a local sponsor from one specific town or city.
Windsor Publications was a leading force in creating All About Town, making editions for over 300 cities in the United States, according to a video interview with Dr. Tom Black, who ran the division of Windsor Publications that was responsible for the games. Among many versions were Buffalo, Milwaukee and Memphis.
Aladco Inc., “the family game company,” created its own versions of the game between 1976 and 1977 that were specific to New England. The company produced eight All About Town special edition board games for Springfield, Greenfield, Holyoke and Worcester in Massachusetts, and Keene, Nashua and Concord in New Hampshire, according to the Greenfield Recorder.
The Concord edition of the game includes staples like the New Hampshire State Library, Concord High School and White Park. Players roll dice and move their game pieces down State Street, past Rumford School, and turn onto Clinton or Pleasant Street. Other stops include Guimonds Auto Body on Manchester Street, The Stove Barn on Loudon Road and Christian Science Church, all of which are still around.
In Concord’s All About Town, each player is handed a shopping list. The goal, it seems, is to obtain each item on the list by collecting items from locations around town. The Concord edition’s shopping list items include groceries, a new or used car, and a visit to the N.H. state library.
The game is also a reminder that Concord has changed in the last three decades. Dan’s Mile Long Hot Dog, which was around for 60 years, is a stop along All About Town’s grid. Now, in real life, it is an art supplies store. The game is a creative lens into the ever-changing state capital— a picture of Concord frozen in time.