Friday, September 6, 2019

Damariscotta Bank & Trust Named as a Best Place to Work in Maine

Damariscotta, Maine - Damariscotta Bank & Trust was recently named as one of the 2019 Best Places to Work in Maine. This statewide survey and awards program was created in 2006 to identify, recognize, and award the best places of employment in Maine who are benefiting the state’s economy, its workforce and business. Damariscotta Bank & Trust was honored in the medium-sized category (50-249 U.S. employees).

“We are very excited to have been chosen as one the Best Places to Work in Maine for the fourth year in a row. Our employees are the center of our organization and a big part of what makes our bank great. They make a difference in our customer’s lives and in their communities. As an organization we take pride that every employee is treated as an individual not as a number just as we treat our customers,” said Marcia Benner, Senior Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer.

Companies from across the state entered the two-part process to determine the Best Places to Work in Maine. The first part consisted of evaluating each nominated company’s workplace policies, practices, and demographics. This part of the process was worth approximately 25% of the total evaluation. The second part consisted of an employee survey to measure the employee experience. This part of the process was worth approximately 75% of the total evaluation. The combined scores determined the top companies and the final rankings. Best Companies Group managed the overall registration and survey process in Maine and also analyzed the data and used their expertise to determine the final rankings.

“DB&T started in the early 1970s to meet the needs of families and small businesses in the Damariscotta area, followed by an expansion to Lincoln, Knox and Waldo County. We are very proud of the Bank we have built together and appreciative of our knowledgeable, helpful and approachable employees because this is what makes our institution reflect these attributes for our customers. We thank our exceptional employees for making us a Best Place to Work in Maine for another year,” said Scott Conant, CEO & President.

Damariscotta Bank & Trust will be recognized at the Best Places to Work in Maine awards ceremony on October 2 and will be listed in a special publication by Mainebiz. The final rankings will be announced at the event. For more information on the Best Places to Work in Maine program, go to www.BestPlacestoWorkME.com or contact Jackie Miller at 717-323-5237. For more information about Damariscotta Bank & Trust, go to www.DamariscottaBank.com or call 800-639-8381.

Portland City Council Asks Rock Row Developers to Address Concert Noise

PORTLAND, Maine -- The Portland City Council has sent a letter to the Rock Row developers asking them to address concert noise and related issues at the Maine Savings Pavillion. Councilors Batson and Thibodeau co-authored the letter, which all members of the Council signed (see attached).


The Councilors are specifically asking for the following information: decibel readings for each
show which shows were amplified on the venue system or that of the artist exact locations of
the monitors at which shows was sound lowered during the performance due to excessive noise.


The Councilors are also requesting details of how Waterfront Concerts has been cataloging and

More than 44,000 Mainers Projected to Lose Food Assistance Under Trump SNAP Proposal

Nearly half at risk are children, older Mainers, and people with disabilities

AUGUSTA – A Trump administration proposal to kick millions of Americans off the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) would threaten essential food benefits for more than 44,000 Maine people, nearly half of whom are children, older Mainers, and people with disabilities.

The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) estimates that 44,068 SNAP participants in Maine would lose food benefits under the proposed rule change. Of those, 11,031 are children and 9,598 are over age 60 or have a disability.

In total, nearly 27 percent of all SNAP participants in Maine are at risk of losing benefits under the proposal, DHHS estimates.

The proposal also would jeopardize meals for schoolchildren, by eliminating automatic enrollment of children in SNAP families in free and reduced-cost school meal programs.

"This proposal would take healthy food off the plates of children, older Mainers, and people with disabilities while punishing hard-working families," said Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew. "We urge the Administration to rescind this misguided proposal, which will hurt Maine people who are just trying to make ends meet."

Last week, Governor Janet Mills joined a coalition of Governors from 16 other states in sending a [//content.govdelivery.com/attachments/MIEOG/2019/08/28/file_attachments/1274517/Letter%20to%20Secretary%20Perdue%20-%20SNAP.pdf]letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to oppose the proposal, which would essentially eliminate Broad-Based Categorical Eligibility from SNAP. Under Broad-Based Categorical Eligibility, states enroll eligible applicants in SNAP if they already qualify for other benefits for low-income people, primarily Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). This allows states to tailor the program to their specific populations and to better coordinate SNAP with other public assistance programs. This now-threatened policy has resulted in more low-income families gaining access to critical food assistance, while also making SNAP less costly for states to administer.

The proposal penalizes families with incomes near the eligibility line by taking away their benefits if they experience even a small increase in wages, and similarly harms older people on fixed incomes who accumulate modest savings.

Maine DHHS is submitting comments to the federal government opposing the rule change. The federal government will accept [//www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/07/24/2019-15670/revision-of-categorical-eligibility-in-the-supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-snap#open-comment]comments on the proposed rule through September 23.

Westbrook Youth Football - Family Movie Night TONIGHT

Friday, September 6, 2019
Pizza, popcorn, drinks and other food available for purchase. Jungle Bootcamp for Kids and other activities at 6PM.

Date:
September 6, 2019
Time:
6:00 PM
Time Details:
Gates open at 6PM, The Lion King (original version) begins at 8PM
Location:
Warren & Fraser Baseball Fields
Address:
Stevens Avenue
WestbrookME 04092

Cost:
$2 per person/$10 maximum per family

City Council to Host Workshop on Parking Garage Proposal on September 10

Biddeford, Maine - The City Council is considering a proposal from Biddeford Innovation, Inc. to build a 640-space parking garage and expand the RiverWalk and pedestrian connections. The purpose of the project is to reduce the property tax burden for residents and provide parking for current and planned development in the downtown and Mill District. No property tax dollars will be used to pay for this project, and the tax rate will not increase due to this project. A City Council Workshop on the proposal will be held on Tuesday, September 10 at 6:00 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chambers. Community members who attend will have the opportunity to share their comments on the proposal with the Council. The Council is expected to vote on the proposal at their September 17 meeting.
If the proposal is approved, Biddeford Innovation, Inc. will design, build, and manage the parking garage. The City will contribute to the project through two sources. The first is through annual payments from the City’s TIF. Money in the TIF fund comes from sheltered property tax payments from businesses and developments in the Mill District – NOT from residential property taxpayers. The second source is revenues from the parking garage and parking lots. If parking revenues are less than expected, the City can make up the difference by collecting payments from surrounding properties in the Mill District, adjusting parking rates, or a combination of the two. If revenues are more than expected, the City will receive the benefit.
All on-street parking will remain FREE. During construction of the garage, rates for parking in surface lots will not increase. Once the garage is completed, rates for parking in the structure will be the same as surface lots. Under the proposal, Biddeford Innovation, Inc. would also assume management of surface lots in the downtown area.
A parking garage is important to our community to promote continued downtown and Mill District development. This matters to taxpayers because new development makes buildings and properties more valuable. More valuable buildings pay more property taxes to the City, which helps stabilize the property tax rate. The construction of the garage is expected to provide the City of Biddeford an additional $16,407,604 in property taxes in the first 10 years of operation and a benefit of $39,772,744 over the 25 year lifetime of the agreement.
 For more information, please visit www.biddefordmaine.org/parkinggarage.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Eastern Equine Encephalitis confirmed in York County horse

AUGUSTA, Maine – Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) was alerted late this afternoon of a positive test for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) in a horse in York County. The horse, which was not vaccinated against the disease, was euthanized. This is the first case of a horse contracting EEE in Maine since 2013.

EEE is a virus that is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. "EEE, which is carried by mosquitoes, is a fatal, viral disease in horses. The virus can affect human beings if they are bitten by mosquitoes that carry the virus," said Dr. Michele Walsh, Maine State Veterinarian. "People cannot acquire EEE infection from sick animals, only from the bite of an infected mosquito."

"This positive result confirms that mosquitoes carrying the virus are present in Maine, which is the reason why Maine CDC urges the state's residents and visitors to take precautions to protect themselves and their animals from mosquito bites," said Nirav D. Shah, Director of Maine CDC. "We want everyone to take precautions while enjoying themselves this holiday weekend."

Public health officials in other northeastern states have seen evidence of a very active season for EEE and some evidence of mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus (WNV), another mosquito-borne illness. There have been no confirmed cases of EEE or WNV in humans in Maine this year. The last case of EEE involving a human in Maine was in 2015.

Maine CDC advises residents and visitors to protect themselves, their children, and animals by minimizing outdoor activity from dusk to dawn, when mosquitoes are most active. If outdoor activity is unavoidable, take personal precautions to prevent mosquito bites, including:

Use an EPA-approved repellent
Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants
Treat clothing and gear with Permethrin
Take steps to control mosquitoes around your property by emptying artificial sources of standing water, fixing holes in screens, and working with a pesticide control applicator.
Animal owners should be aware that:

An EEE/WNV vaccine for horses is available.
Horses that have not been EEE/WNV vaccinated in the past six months should get either an initial vaccine or a booster as soon as possible.
The virus cannot be transmitted from horses to humans.
The virus can also affect specialty livestock, such as llamas, alpacas, emus, ostriches, and other farm-raised birds, such as pheasants, quail and ducks. Owners should contact their herd or flock veterinarians to discuss available vaccines and should also take precautions to help reduce exposure to mosquitoes for both themselves and their animals.
Signs of EEE in horses include stumbling or poor balance, unusual behavior, and lethargy. Other symptoms include head pressing, circling, tremors, seizures and eventual coma. In some animal species, the first signs of the disease can be bloody diarrhea or sudden death. The fatality rate for infected animals is greater than 90%, and those that recover can have permanent brain damage. When approved for protection of a particular species, vaccination is the best way to prevent the disease.

The risk of mosquito-transmitted diseases such as EEE and WNV usually increases through the late summer and early fall. Mosquitoes are active until the second heavy frost.

Human infection with EEE virus can cause serious illness affecting the brain. Some persons infected with EEE have no obvious symptoms. In those persons who do develop illness, symptoms – which typically appear between three and 10 days after a bite – range from mild flu-like illness to high fever, headache, stiff neck, and decreased consciousness. Approximately one in every three individuals who are infected with EEE die and many of those who recover experience lasting health problems. Individuals with symptoms suggestive of EEE infection should contact their physician immediately. No human vaccine against EEE and WNV infection is available. There is no specific antiviral treatment for EEE or WNV infections.

Maine has many resources regarding mosquito-borne diseases:

Maine CDC's vectorborne disease website [//www.maine.gov/dhhs/vectorborne]www.maine.gov/dhhs/vectorborne includes fact sheets on EEE and WNV.
Short videos on mosquito-borne diseases, mosquito habitat, and repellent use are available at [//www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/videos.shtml]www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/videos.shtml or through Maine CDC's YouTube channel [//www.youtube.com/user/MainePublicHealth]www.youtube.com/user/MainePublicHealth.
Information about Maine CDC monitoring of mosquito-borne illnesses is available at [//www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/vector-borne/arboviral-surveillance.shtml]www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/vector-borne/arboviral-surveillance.shtml.
For more information about EEE and WNV prevention, visit this CDC website: [//www.cdc.gov/EEE/]www.cdc.gov/EEE/ or [//www.cdc.gov/westnile]www.cdc.gov/westnile

Maine Cheese Festival in Pittsfield on September 8

Pittsfield ME-The Maine Cheese Guild is holding its fourth annual cheese festival on September 8 in Pittsfield at Manson Park. Attendees can sample or purchase nationally recognized cheeses from 20 small, artisanal, Maine cheese makers. This is a perfect venue to see what Maine cheese has to offer.
Maine beer, wine, spirits, and cider will be sampled at a tent along the Sebasticook River. Five local food trucks will be cooking throughout the day. Entertainment will be provided by locals such as Rough Sawn, Married with Chitlins, and Sibley and Company.
According to Event Coordinator Arlene Brokaw, “Maine cheese is a combination of great quality cow, goat, sheep, and yes, buffalo milk, plus the innovation, creativity and dedication of Maine’s artisanal cheese makers. The personality of each Cheesemaker really shines through their cheeses, and this festival provides a wonderful opportunity to sample all of them.”
Guild President Jessie Dowling reports that Maine cheeses captured an astounding 18 awards at this year’s Big E, the largest agricultural event on the eastern seaboard.
Principal sponsors include Allagash Brewing Company, Bangor Savings Bank, Bangor Wine and Cheese, and Are You Ready to Party. The Town of Pittsfield is celebrating its bicentennial and has been a huge supporter.
The festival runs from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM, rain or shine. The Early Bird event begins at 10:00 AM. Kids under 12 are free.
Tickets can be purchased online: mainecheeseguild.org and click on Eventbrite.

Friday, August 9, 2019

Work on Route 106 in Livermore Falls

LIVERMORE FALLS - The Maine Department of Transportation will be conducting culvert, drainage, and paving work along Route 106 in Livermore Falls. Work is scheduled to begin on August 19th and be finished by September 15th. The work area is just north of the south entrance to Strickland Loop Road. Route 106 will be closed to through traffic at the work site; vehicles will use Route 133 as a detour. Manter Construction of Maine, Inc. of Sidney is the contractor on this job.

Perennial Garden Maintenance talk

Event Location: Merryspring Nature Center, Camden/Rockport, Maine

Event Date/Time: Tuesday, August 20 at 12:00 pm.

Photo Caption: Merryspring’s perennial garden in August

Camden, Maine - Maine Master Gardener John Fromer will lead a presentation on practical perennial garden maintenance at Merryspring Nature Center on Tuesday, August 20 at 12:00 pm.

Maintaining your perennial garden can be fun and relaxing- and the right methods can save time, money, and back pain. In this installment of his perennial gardening series, John Fromer will teach methods and tips to keep the late summer garden healthy and attractive. Weeding, deadheading, mulching, watering, staking, and pest and disease prevention will be demonstrated in the beautiful gardens at Merryspring.

A selection of recommended gardening books and tools will be available for purchase after the program. This is an outdoor program. Guests should wear weather-appropriate clothing.

Fromer has been a Maine Master Gardener since 1998 and runs Appleton Ridge Flower and Vegetable Farm with his wife Kathy, also a Maine Master Gardener. Together they grow flowers, vegetables, and herbs in a sustainable and authentic fashion.

This event is part of the Summer Talk series, co-sponsored by RE/MAX Jaret & Cohn and The First Bank.

Admission to Tuesday talks is $5, with free admission for members of Merryspring.

Merryspring is your community nature center offering walking trails, cultivated gardens, wildlife, and ecology and horticulture educational programs all year round. The park is located at the end of Conway Road, just off of Route 1 in Camden behind Hannaford Shopping Plaza. For more information on this program, please contact info@merryspring.org or call 207-236-2239.

Nature's Tea Party

Event Location: Merryspring Nature Center, Camden/Rockport, Maine

Event Date/Time: Friday, August 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Photo Caption:  Wild sumac makes a refreshing and nutritious tea

Camden, Maine - Merryspring Nature Center will host a free program called "Nature's Tea Party" for families and children on Friday, August 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Many common and wild plants can be made into teas and summer drinks. In this program, children will be able to sample teas made from common backyard plants, as well as learn how to create their own mixtures.

After a short garden tour and demonstration, there will be a tea tasting and time allowed for free play in the garden.

Merryspring is your community nature center offering walking trails, cultivated gardens, wildlife, and ecology and horticulture educational programs all year round. The park is located at the end of Conway Road, just off of Route 1 in Camden behind Hannaford Shopping Plaza. For more information on this program, please contact info@merryspring.org or call 207-236-2239.

Quantum Electronica Concert at the Camden Public Library

Camden, Maine - Join Quantum on Saturday, August 18, at 2:00 pm in the Camden Public Library’s Amphitheatre for an electronic tapestry of groove. Quantum Electronica is comprised of Jason Dean on vocals, drum machines, and keys; and Michael Whitehead on bass and pedals. The performers describe their sound as “an eclectic electronic music style blending dance music with film score and a jazz flair.” This theatrical duo has produced three albums and has been touring in Maine and out of state for the past five years. The show is free and open to the public. Bring a chair or blanket for comfortable seating. For more information visit www.librarycamden.org.

To Catch a Thief Screening at the Camden Public Library

Camden, Maine - The Monday Night Movie Series at the Camden Public Library’s Amphitheatre continues on August 19, at 8:00 pm with the breathtaking thriller To Catch a Thief, directed by Alfred Hitchcock and based on the novel by David Dodge.

This classic tale of romantic intrigue stars Grace Kelly and Cary Grant as a retired jewel thief who will be arrested unless he can trap the copycat burglar on the French Riviera. Rated PG. 1hr, 46 min. 1955. Bring a blanket or lawn chair for comfortable seating. For more information visit www.librarycamden.org.

Bedtime Math at the Camden Public Library



Camden, Maine - Looking for a fun way to get the kids excited about back-to-school? Join children’s librarian Miss Amy for a “math-tastic” pajama party on Thursday, August 22, from 5:00 to 6:00 pm at the Camden Public Library. The Bedtime Math program will challenge kindergarten through fourth-grade children with math games in order to get their brains in gear for the new school year. Wear pjs and bring friends! For more information, call Miss Amy at 236-3440.

The Enchanted Hour at the Camden Public Library

Camden, Maine - Wall Street Journal writer Meghan Cox Gurdon presents her new book The Enchanted Hour on Tuesday, August 20, at 7:00 pm at the Camden Public Library. Gurdon’s book takes a a conversation-changing look at how reading aloud makes adults and children smarter, happier, healthier, more successful, and more closely attached, even as technology pulls in the other direction.

A miraculous alchemy occurs when one person reads to another, transforming the simple stuff of a book, a voice, and a bit of time into complex and powerful fuel for the heart, brain, and imagination. Grounded in the latest neuroscience and behavioral research, and drawing widely from literature, The Enchanted Hour explains the dazzling cognitive and social-emotional benefits that await children, whatever their class, nationality, or family background. But it’s not just about bedtime stories for little kids: reading aloud consoles, uplifts, and invigorates at every age, deepening the intellectual lives and emotional well-being of teenagers and adults, too.

Meghan Cox Gurdon argues that this ancient practice is a fast-working antidote to the fractured attention spans, atomized families, and unfulfilling ephemera of the tech era, helping to replenish what our devices are leaching away. For everyone, reading aloud engages the mind in complex narratives; for children, it’s an irreplaceable gift that builds vocabulary, fosters imagination, and kindles a lifelong appreciation of language, stories, and pictures.

Bringing together the latest scientific research, practical tips, and reading recommendations, The Enchanted Hour will both charm and galvanize, inspiring readers to share this invaluable, life-altering tradition with the people they love most.

Gurdon is a Camden Hills Regional High School and Bowdoin College graduate. Her book will be available for purchase and signing following the presentation. For more information visit www.librarycamden.org.

Images attached:

The Enchanted Hour Book Cover

Photo of Meghan Cox Gurdon

Escape the Upside Down at the Camden Public Library

Camden, Maine - An experiment at the Hawkins National Laboratory has gone wrong, and a gate has opened to another dimension, known as the Upside Down. Solve puzzles, open locks, follow clues, and try to escape the Upside Down in a Stranger Things-themed afternoon event for teens on Wednesday, August 21, at 4:00 pm at the Camden Public Library. Participants are encouraged to come dressed in their favorite ‘80s garb to fully immerse in the “escape box” experience. For more information, contact Loraine at 236-3440.

Maine DEP to test marine spill response on Penobscot River

AUGUSTA, August 9, 2019 — Emergency Response personnel from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection will conduct a boom deployment exercise on the Penobscot River on Thursday, August 15, 2019 in Brewer.

The training exercise will take place at the public boat launch located on North Main Street in Brewer beginning at 9 a.m. on Thursday and continuing until 3PM in the afternoon. The purpose of this exercise is to test the feasibility of emergency response strategies in the event of a marine oil spill in the river.

Maine has a total of 249 protection strategies designed for environmentally sensitive areas from Kittery to Calais, and the DEP has an active program to review and test these strategies to ensure natural resources are most effectively protected.

The North Main Street boat launch will be closed to the public for safety reasons and members of the public should seek an alternative site for boat launching and other recreational activities through the duration of this training exercise.


For additional information, contact:
David Madore, Communications Director
(207) 287-5842
[link]david.madore@maine.gov

August 20: Intergenerational Book Club at Thomaston Public Library

Thomaston, Maine - On Tuesday, August 20 at 2:30 PM, the Thomaston Intergenerational Book Club will discuss The Stars are Fire by Anita Shreve.

From the publisher:

"An exquisitely suspenseful new novel about an extraordinary young woman tested by a catastrophic event and its devastating aftermath--based on the true story of the largest fire in Maine's history.

"In October 1947, after a summer long drought, fires break out all along the Maine coast from Bar

Bedford St to Close for Paving Sunday, August 11 at 5 PM

Roadway will reopen to traffic by 8 AM Monday, August 12

PORTLAND, Maine -- On Sunday evening, August 11, 2019, the City will be closing Bedford Street as part of the Bedford Street Sewer separation project for roadway pavement installation. The closure will occur from August 11 at 5:00 PM to August 12 at 8:00 AM. Shaw Brothers, the City’s contractor, will be installing final pavement on Bedford and Durham Street during this closure. 

IMPORTANT INFO FOR MOTORISTS:  The left turn movement from Forest Ave onto Bedford Street will be shut down during the paving work.  Motorists will be directed to use Falmouth Street as a detour during this night closure. Local access to all USM facilities and businesses on Bedford Street will remain open and accessible via Deering Avenue and Brighton Avenue.  The entire roadway will be back open by 8:00 AM on Monday morning. 

SEEK ALTERNATE ROUTE
Motorists will be required to seek alternate routes around the closure until the roadway is reopened.

City Announces Finalists to Create MLK Memorial in Portland

PORTLAND, Maine -- The City of Portland announced yesterday that three finalists have been selected from the RFQ phase to move forward to the RFP phase to create a memorial to honor Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Portland. The finalists are: Robert Katz, Augusta, ME; TJD&A Landscape Architects, Yarmouth, ME; and Ironwood Design Group, Newmarket, NH. The memorial  is intended to inspire visitors to reflect on Dr. King’s life and the values he espoused, prompting everyone to consider how they can contribute to realizing his vision of an equitable and fair society.


The MLK Memorial Selection Committee issued an RFQ in May 2019 to seek interested applicants for the creation of a memorial. The submissions were due at the end of June, and nine submissions were received. The Committee met on July 22 to review the submissions and choose up to three finalists to move forward with the RFP phase. The City has allocated $100,000 for the creation of the memorial and the three finalists will each receive $2,500 to develop their proposals.


“I want to thank the artists and designers who took the time to respond to our RFQ. We received several quality submissions, and I look forward to seeing and reviewing the fully developed proposals from the finalists,” said Councilor Jill Duson, Co-Chair of the MLK Memorial Selection Committee.


“A monument to the life and legacy of Dr. King will serve as a special place of reflection and inspiration for all Maine people,” said Reverend Kenneth Lewis, pastor of the Green Memorial AME Zion Church in Portland, and Co-Chair of the Selection Committee. “I encourage the public to attend the presentations on November 14.”


The RFP phase of the process asks the finalists to develop proposals that include a written project statement, visuals, models, schedule, and budget, followed by an in-person interview and presentation on November 14, 2019.


After reviewing the materials and candidate presentations, the Selection Committee will recommend a winning artist, which is expected to be announced on Martin Luther King Jr. Day on January 20, 2020.


About the Process

The MLK Recognition Task Force was appointed to consider how best to recognize and acknowledge Dr. King’s life and work, determined it was best to site a memorial in an open area on the Bayside Trail located in the West Bayside neighborhood.


The City Council’s Sustainability & Transportation Committee established the MLK Memorial Selection Committee to oversee the RFQ and RFP process. The Committee, co-chaired by Councilor Jill Duson and Reverend Kenneth Lewis, were tasked with choosing up to three finalists to move on to the proposal phase.

Rockland Public Library-- Oshima Brothers Lawn Concert on Thursday, August 22

Photos credit: Robyn Nicole Film and Photo
Rockland, Maine - Oshima Brothers will perform on the lawn of the Rockland Public Library for a free concert on Thursday, August 22 at 6:30 PM. People of all ages are invited to celebrate summer, dance and enjoy the music, and to come early for a picnic. They are asked to bring a chair or a blanket, if they would like, as seating is not  provided.

Oshima Brothers' magnetic sibling sound and contagious joy result from a lifetime of making music together. Raised in a musical family in rural Maine, the brothers have honed a harmony-rich blend of contemporary folk and acoustic pop. On stage, Sean and Jamie create a full and complex sound with dynamic vocals, electric and acoustic guitars, octave bass, loops, and percussion.

Oshima Brothers write, record, and produce all their music and videos in their home studio. They currently have two albums to their credit, a self-titled debut in 2016, followed by the EP “Under The Same Stars” in 2019. Within a month of its release, the EP had garnered hundreds of thousands of streams online. Accompanying each of the five songs off “Under The Same Stars” is a music video, including one for the single “Ellie” which was featured as the lead track on NPR’s monthly “Heavy Rotation” playlist in March.
The brothers live together in Maine but spend most of their time on the road performing, writing, filming, and dancing.

The Library is located at 80 Union  St. FMI: 594-0310. In case of inclement weather, the event will be held in the Library’s Community Room.

Wade fires seven scoreless in a 9-0 win over Erie

Wade dominates on the hill, offense cruises to a 9-0 win!
Portland takes two of three from Erie
Portland, Maine - Konner Wade threw seven scoreless innings and the Sea Dogs (24-23) shutout the Erie SeaWolves (34-14) 9-0 in the series rubber match on Thursday afternoon at Hadlock Field.

Wade (W, 3-4) allowed just five hits with no walks and five strikeouts.

The Sea Dogs took an early lead on a solo homer by Charlie Madden over the Maine Monster off of Alex Faedo to leadoff the third inning.

Joey Curletta followed suit with a leadoff homer in the fourth off of Faedo over the Monster to make it 2-0 'Dogs.

Faedo (L, 6-7) left the game after four innings. He allowed two runs on three hits and struck out two.


The Sea Dogs extended their lead with three runs off of Alex Lange in the sixth. Joey Curletta led off with a walk, then Luke Tendler, Michael Osinski, and Brett Netzer hit three straight doubles to give Portland a 5-0 lead.

In the seventh, Portland sent eight to the plate and scored three more runs to go-ahead 8-0. Jarren Duran led off the inning with his first Double-A home run. Tendler later drove in a run on an infield single, then Brett Netzer capped off the scoring with an RBI double.

Chatham added an RBI on a groundout in the eighth to make it 9-0.  Portland combined for 15 hits - including a season-high-tying six doubles.  Eight of nine Portland hitters had at least one hit, while Chatham, Curletta, Tendler, Netzer, and Madden each had multi-hit games.

Jenrry Mejia made his Sea Dogs debut and pitched a scoreless eighth, allowing just one hit. Robinson Leyer finished the game with a scoreless ninth.

Portland begins a three-game series with the Akron RubberDucks (Indians affiliate) on Friday night beginning at 7:00 PM from Hadlock Field. RHP Denyi Reyes (6-9, 3.63) is on the mound for Portland against Akron RHP Eli Morgan (6-2, 3.13).

Radio coverage on the WPEI U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network begins at 6:45 PM. The game is available on the tune-in app and MiLB.TV.

Tickets for Friday's game are available at 207-879-9500 or seadogs.com. Book your nine-inning vacation today!

Loughridge Art Show Throughout August at the Camden Public Library

Camden, Maine - An exhibition of over thirty original paintings of the Maine landscape by South Bristol artist Sally Loughridge continues at the Camden Public Library in the Picker Room Gallery through the end of August. New paintings have replaced sold work. "The process of painting always excites me as I observe and connect with nature," she says. "I feel more alive when I paint."               

Loughridge shows her work extensively throughout the midcoast in galleries and juried or invitational shows. For more information about the show, visit www.librarycamden.org.

Rockland Public Library: Read ME Book Discussion

Tuesday, August 20th at 6:00 PM @ Rockland Public Library

Read ME! Book Discussion: After the Eclipse and Paris Was the Place
Rockland, Maine - It’s not too late to get some summer reading in! Join Librarian Jessie Blanchard for a lively discussion of the two picks for this year’s Read ME reading program, presented by the Maine Humanities Council.

Read ME is a statewide community read offered in partnership between the Maine Humanities Council and Maine State Library. Each year a well-known Maine author recommends two titles by lesser-known Maine authors. For 2019, recommending author Tess Gerritsen has chosen Paris Was the Place by Susan Conley and After the Eclipse by Sarah Perry. Both books can be requested through the Library. Sarah Perry will also be at Rockland Library for an author talk on August 29th at 6:30!

Oxford County Bridge Construction

WATERFORD - The Maine Department of Transportation will be replacing the bridge deck of the Horrs Bridge in Waterford. The bridge carries Valley Road (Route 35) over Crooked River. The work area is about one-third of a mile southeast of the Albany Township line. Drivers should expect one-lane traffic during construction. This job is scheduled to begin on August 12th and should be finished by November 30th. The contractor is BMB Construction LLC of Holden.

Railroad Bridge Work in Aroostook County

ASHLAND - The Maine Department of Transportation is working to strengthen the railroad bridge in Ashland that crosses over Sheridan Road and the Aroostook River. This project is one of two aimed at allowing increased speed and weight across the entire MaineDOT-owned rail line in Aroostook County. The Ashland bridge, which is officially named the Madawaska Subdivision over Sheridan Road and Aroostook River, is approximately one mile north of the intersection of Sheridan Road and Route 11. Work is scheduled to begin on August 14th and be finished in Fall 2020. Drivers should expect one-lane traffic on Sheridan Road. The contractor on this job is Koppers Railroad Structures of Madison, Wisconsin.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

High School Students Enrolling Now in Early College Courses at UMA Rockland


Rockland, Maine - Local juniors and seniors are encouraged to enroll tuition free in college courses for the fall term at UMA Rockland. Known as "High School Aspirations", these students earn both college credit and high school credit to meet graduation requirements.

The University of Maine System and the Maine Department of Education are partners in waiving tuition for all qualified high school students.

High school students most often enroll in courses which meet general education requirements that will transfer into colleges no matter the student's path.  According to UMA Rockland Director, Deborah Meehan, early college students typically enroll in the following academic areas: English, math, biology, psychology, communications and history.  Meehan noted that UMA Rockland serves more than 60 early college students in a given semester.

"Although we prefer for these students to take in-person classes, there are many distance education options, including online courses." Meehan added, "Despite all of the options, we think attending class in real time with other University students offers the best experience."

She noted that these high school students form relationships with other college students and University faculty which are valuable in their development and in planning for their futures.

"Taking early college classes is a great way to increase student motivation and aspirations," Meehan added.  "This experience can often be the launching point for young students to begin to plan their futures. They gain confidence and begin to see possibilities beyond high school. And, in the long run, they save many tuition dollars."

Interested students are encouraged to call (596-6906) or visit the UMA Rockland Center on the 4th floor of the Breakwater Building on Route #1. Staff will guide students through the simple enrollment process.

University classes start September 3rd.

Friday, August 2, 2019

AG Frey Joins Multistate Coalition Challenging Trump's Move to Gut Protections for Asylum Seekers Fleeing Persecution

AUGUSTA, Maine - Attorney General Aaron M. Frey today joined a group of 21 State Attorneys General to challenge the Trump administration's proposed changes to asylum standards. If implemented, these changes would allow the Executive branch to arbitrarily deny asylum claims to immigrants seeking haven from domestic or gang violence. In a friend-of-the-court brief filed in Grace v. Barr before the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, the AGs argue that these stringent revisions-which would effectively bar asylum claims based on domestic or gang-related violence-go against longstanding federal law and judicial precedent, undermining the rule of law itself.

"It is our country's longstanding policy to protect individuals seeking refuge from persecution and violence. Our state has benefitted from the presence of asylum seekers who have chosen to make live, work, and raise families in Maine," said Frey. "The federal government's proposed changes to asylum standards not only run counter to our values, but also to federal law." The District of Columbia and partner states filed this amicus brief in Grace v. Barr, in support of the plaintiffs' challenge to the Trump administration's heightened asylum standards. The lawsuit was first filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Center for Gender & Refugee Studies, the ACLU of Texas, and the ACLU of D.C., in response to a policy former Attorney General Jeff Sessions implemented in June 2018.

Sessions articulated this policy change in Matter of A-B-, while intervening in the Board of

Rockland Public Library-- Author Talk by Jeffrey Ryan on August 15

Rockland, Maine - On Thursday, August 15 at 6:30 PM Maine author and historian Jeffrey Ryan  will present a talk on his soon-to-be published book, Hermit: the Mysterious Life of Jim Wyte,  in the Community Room of the Rockland Public Library. The book, which tells the story of a fascinating man who moved to Monson, Maine in 1895, has caught the attention of historians and reviewers on a national scale.

Based on a true story, Hermit weaves a tale almost too fantastic to be believed. When Jim Whyte settled outside the slate mining town of Monson, Maine in 1895, people hardly knew what to make of him. Almost 130 years later, we still don’t. A world traveler that spoke six languages fluently, Whyte came to town with sacks full of money and a fierce desire to keep to himself. It was clear that Whyte was hiding from something—enough to make even the FBI eventually come looking. But even the Feds couldn’t imagine how Whyte, who lost every penny he had when WWI broke out, amassed another fortune before he died. Hermit follows one man’s quest to discover all he can about Whyte’s secret life before it’s too late.

Ryan, author of several books, including APPALACHIAN ODYSSEY: A 28-year hike on America’s trail (Down East Books, 2016) and BLAZING AHEAD: Benton MacKaye, Myron Avery and the Rivalry that Built the Appalachian Trail (Appalachian Mountain Club Books, 2017), said, “I happened upon a reference to Jim Whyte when I was researching my earlier books and thought it might be an interesting story. I had no idea how interesting and unlikely the tale would become. Incredibly, Whyte lived a secret double life involving frequent trips to New York City with almost nobody being the wiser. How he was making his money will certainly intrigue modern readers.”

Maine State Historian Earle G. Shettleworth said, “The author takes us back to the mid-20th century in the Maine woods with a descriptive force and a gentle nostalgia that realistically evoke both time and place. ‘Hermit' will resonate with many readers who have experienced the mystique and beauty of the Maine wilderness.”

Rockland Public Library is located at 80 Union St. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please  call 594-0310.

Rockland Public Library-- Art and Artists of Monhegan Talk on August 13

Rockland, Maine - Rockland Historical Society Board Member Leith MacDonald will give a talk on the Art and Artists of Monhegan, on Tuesday, August 13, at 6:30 pm, in the Community Room of the Rockland Public Library. Following Leith’s talk, there will be refreshments and conversation in the Museum of the Rockland Historical Society. This talk is co-sponsored by the Historical Society and the Rockland Public Library.


As a young artist, Leith spent significant time on Monhegan, painting the rugged coast. He developed a knowledge and love of Monhegan’s art history and began giving guided tours – following in the footsteps of George Bellows, Rockwell Kent, Edward Hopper, and others – exploring the sites that inspired many great masterworks.


After moving to Rockland, Leith worked as a member of the curatorial department of the Farnsworth Art Museum. He has curated or helped with exhibits for the Monhegan Museum, the Island Institute, Colby College Art Museum, the Brandywine River Museum of Art, the Delaware Art Museum, the Denver Art Museum, Langlais Sculpture Preserve, and the Ellis-Beauregard Foundation. Now working for the Wyeth Study Center at the Farnsworth Art Museum, Leith created the popular exhibit titled “Andrew Wyeth in Rockland,” incorporating the voices and stories of long-time Rockland residents.


Leith recently curated and cataloged a large private collection of Monhegan art. He will share photos of some of the paintings in the collection and explore the connections between the artists and their subjects on Monhegan, Maine’s premier art colony.


Rockland Public Library is located at 80 Union St. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please  call 594-0310.

Rockland Public Library: Community Picnic Letter to the Editor

Rockland, Maine - Saturday, July 27th was sunny and warm, the perfect day for a Free Community Picnic with lawn games &  music, and what a great picnic it was for the approximately 175 participants!

The Rockland Public Library & WRFR Community Radio would like to thank the many volunteers and businesses that helped to make it such a special day:

Thanks go to City Manager Tom Luttrell and the Public Services Department for providing extra picnic tables and a grill, to the Library for the lawn games & giant bubbles,  Jessica Fratello at the Good Tern Co-op for the delectable coleslaw, Beth’s Farm Market for the early sweet corn, Wasses for the hot dogs, Hannaford for cups, the First Universalist Church in Rockland for use of their kitchen, and Rockland Food Service for plates. Maynard Stanley’s Beanhole Beans and kettle corn demonstrations were a huge hit and we are so grateful to him for the donation of his time and wonderful food.

Music was a big part of the day thanks to Ukes Rock, Dusty and Joanna and Friends, Miners Creek, and Mike Fletcher on the saxophone.

Thanks to WRFR's Kirk Gentalen, who assisted Maynard Stanley on the kettle corn, and WRFR's Chuck Gifford who served as grillmaster, and all-around volunteers Gabe Barter, Peter Lehman, and Rockland Librarian Jessie Blanchard. Rockland Parks and Recreation Committee and Renew Rockland shared information, served yummy zucchini lemon cake, and showed people the Community Farm. Special thanks go to Mike Grondin for all of his behind the scenes assistance.

Community is essential and we’re happy to have shared in such a big expression of it through the third Annual Community picnic. Here’s to many more picnics and community gatherings!

Patty King, Rockland Public Library

Jo Lindsay and Joe Steinberger, WRFR

Rockland Public Library-- American Travelling Morrice Performance on August 15

Rockland, Maine - The American Travelling Morrice group will perform in the side staff parking lot of the Rockland Public Library on Thursday, August 15 at 2:00 PM.

The American Travelling Morrice is comprised of dancers and musicians from across North America and abroad. While many  perform regularly with teams in their hometowns, they come together for one week each year to form the American Travelling Morrice. Since 1976, the group has toured throughout the Northeastern United States and England. Morris dancing is an English country tradition, with roots in medieval street theatre. For hundreds of years, teams of white-clad dancers have capered and stepped through the intricate patterns of the dance, clashing wooden sticks and waving handkerchiefs in time to lively traditional tunes.

The American Travelling Morrice continues this tradition for a week each summer, bringing the Morris Dance to a new geographical region. Since 1976, the team has toured throughout New York, New England, New Jersey, Maine, Pennsylvania, and England, with performances in settings both rural  (the town green, farmer’s market, etc.) and populated (The House of Seven Gables, Newport Folk Festival, Gloucester Fisherman's Memorial, Old Montreal, and the White House).

Rockland Public Library is located at 80 Union St. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, please  call 594-0310.

Portland Announces New Social Services Director

PORTLAND, Maine – The City of Portland is pleased to announce that it has hired Aaron Geyer as its Social Services Administrator. He assumed the role on July 31, 2019, and had been serving as the Interim Administrator for the last several months. Prior to that, Mr. Geyer has worked for the City’s Social Services Division for 13 years in a variety of capacities. For the past four years, he has served as the Program Manager responsible for overseeing General Assistance,Representative Payee, the HIRE and Workfare programs.  


“Aaron did a fantastic job serving in the interim capacity, and so I’m delighted he accepted our offer to officially assume the Administrator position,” said Kristen Dow, Director of the City’s Health & Human Services Department. “He has proven his leadership and ability to navigate through difficult situations, all while managing several Division initiatives.” 


Portland’s Social Services Division is part of the City’s Health & Human Services Department. The division provides quality programs to low-income Portland residents that encourage dignity, self-respect, and self-reliance in the transition from public assistance to self-sufficiency. Mr. Geyer will oversee a budget of $13 million and a staff of 90.

Author Event: Rebels against Tyranny

Where:   Blue Hill Public Library 

When:  Thursday, August 15th, 7:00 PM

Cost:  Admission is Free

Calendar listing: Author event: Rebels against Tyranny with Helena P. Schrader, Thu. Aug. 15, 7 PM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515.


BLUE HILL, Maine – Local author Helena P. Schrader will share from her Chaucer-award finalist book, Rebels against Tyranny: Civil War in the Crusader States, at the Blue Hill Public Library on Thursday, August 15th at 7:00 PM. This historical novel is set against the backdrop of the Sixth Crusade, taking the reader from the harems of Sicily to the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem, from the palaces of privilege to the dungeons of despair. According to Helena, her books seek to “bring history back to life as a means to better understand ourselves.”

Helena P. Schrader earned a PhD in History from the University of Hamburg and is the winner of seventeen literary accolades. Her novel, Envoy of Jerusalem, won seven awards, including "Best Biography 2017," and "Best Christian Historical Fiction 2017."

This event is co-sponsored by the library and Blue Hill Books. There is no charge, and everyone is welcome. Books will be available for sale and signing. For more information, call the library at 374-5515.

“Panels & Pizza,” Graphic Novel Discussion Group For Teens

Where:   Roland Howard Room, Blue Hill Public Library

When:  Friday, August 16th, 4:30 to 6:00 PM, and every 3rd Friday of the month 

Cost:  Admission is Free

Calendar listing: “Panels & Pizza” Graphic Novel Discussion Group for Teens will discuss Persepolis: the Story of a Childhood, by Marjane Sartrapi, copies avail. now, Fri. July 19, 4:30 PM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515.

BLUE HILL, Maine — Teens are invited to the Blue Hill Public Library’s graphic novel club, Panels & Pizza, on Friday, August 16th at 4:30 PM, This month, the group will be reading Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi. In this graphic memoir, Satrapi tells the story of her childhood from 6 to 14 years old growing up in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution. Copies of the book are now available to check out.

Panels & Pizza is a graphic novel club for teens that meets on the third Friday of the month. Each month, the group reads a graphic novel and gathers to discuss the story, art, and the work as a whole. Everyone is welcome, even if they haven't had a chance to finish the book. Pizza will be served! For more information, contact the library at 374-5515.

Community Issues Forum: Public Works & Crisis Management

Where:   Roland Howard Room, Blue Hill Public Library 

When:  Wednesday, August 14th at 6:30 P.M.

Cost:  Admission is Free

Calendar listing: Blue Hill Peninsula Community Issues Forum: Public Works & Crisis Management, Wed. Aug. 14, 6:30 PM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515.

BLUE HILL, Maine – The Blue Hill Public Library’s Community Issues Forum continues on Wednesday August 14th at 6:30 PM. The topic will be: “Public Works and Crisis Management: FDR and the Legacy of the New Deal.” As a reference for the challenges we face in 2019, the New Deal proved powerful in defining presidential leadership and government action creating a host of new agencies, a broadened regulatory climate and responsibility for social welfare, labor rights and conservation measures. Two speakers will use news reels, popular film clips, press coverage and political rhetoric to examine the contours of modern liberalism, the ideological divisions of the 1930s, and the contentious historical legacy of the New Deal for our own era.

Presenters will be Dr. Nathan Godfried, the Adelaide & Alan Bird Professor of History at the University of Maine at Orono, and Dr. Gregory Bush, a Blue Hill resident and retired history Professor from the University of Miami. David Weiss, Executive Director of Northeast Historic Film in Bucksport, will moderate the discussion. This event is sponsored by the library, and is free and open to everyone. For more information contact the library at 374-5515.

Poetry Reading at Blue Hill Public Library

Where:   Blue Hill Public Library 

When:  Wednesday, August 14th at 2:00 P.M.

Cost:  Admission is Free

Calendar listing: Poetry Reading: Elizabeth Tibbetts reads from her new book, Say What You Can, Wed. Aug. 14, 2 PM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515.

BLUE HILL, Maine - Elizabeth Tibbetts will read from her new book of poetry, Say What You Can, at the Blue Hill Public Library on Wednesday, August 14th, at 2:00 PM. Elizabeth’s awards include a fellowship and grant from the Maine Arts Commission, the Bluestem Poetry Award and the Penobscot Watershed Poetry Prize. Her poems have appeared in numerous journals and have been read on Writers Almanac and Poems from Here.

Elizabeth grew up in Camden, Maine, and now lives in Hope with her husband and works as a nurse. She writes about her work, her roots in Maine, and her love and concerns for the natural world.

This event is co-sponsored by the library and Blue Hill Books. It is free and open to all. Books will be available for sale and signing. For more information, call the library at 374-5515.

Page to Stage: The Process of Staging Avalon & an Avalon-Themed Storytime

Where:   Blue Hill Public Library 

When:  Tuesday, August 13th, 10:30 AM and Thursday, August 15th, 2:00 PM

Cost:  Admission is Free

Calendar listing: Avalon-Themed Storytime, by Kate Russell of Opera House Arts in Stonington, Tue. Aug. 13, 10:30 AM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515. 

Calendar listing: Lecture: Staging Avalon, by Judith Jerome, dramatist at Opera House Arts in Stonington, Thu. Aug. 15, 2 PM, Blue Hill Library, 374-5515. 


BLUE HILL, Maine –  Dramatist Judith Jerome will share a "page to stage" talk at the Blue Hill Public Library, on Thursday, August 15th at 2:00 PM, about the process of staging Avalon, a new play at Opera House Arts in Stonington. Judith has been making and thinking about theater for forty years, and was the founding artistic director of Opera House Arts at the Stonington Opera House with Carol Estey.

Avalon is playwright-performer Melody Bates’ reimagining of the Arthurian legend, set in the outdoor sculpture park that is co-creator Peter Beerits’ beloved “Nellieville,” at Nervous Nellie’s Jams and Jellies in Deer Isle.

Another Stonington Opera House staff member, Arts Director of Communications Kate Russell, will be doing an Avalon-themed storytime at the library on Tuesday, August 13th at 10:30 AM. She will read King Arthur’s Very Great Grandson, by Kenneth Kraegel.

In addition to producing extant plays over the past twenty years, Opera House Arts has built a legacy of cultivating both original and site-specific work. These events are sponsored by the library and Opera House Arts in Stonington. They are free and everyone is welcome. For more information, call the library at 374-5515.

Kent fires seven strong innings in 4-3 win at Richmond

Kent fires seven strong innings! 'Dogs win 4-3 at Richmond
Portland completes three-game sweep over the Flying Squirrels
Richmond, Va. - Matthew Kent (5-3) pushed through seven innings of work to outlast the Richmond Flying Squirrels (16-24, 39-68) 4-3 and hand the Portland Sea Dogs (20-21, 47-61) a series sweep Thursday night at The Diamond.

Jarren Duran led-off the contest with a single to extend to an 11-game hit streak and came home on an RBI single from Bobby Dalbec to snag an early 1-0 lead.
Richmond pushed back with a Hamlet Marte RBI single in the second inning to even the tilt.

The 'Dogs and Squirrels stayed locked until the sixth inning when all nine Portland batters reached the plate. Duran led-off with another single and Jhon Nunez cracked a hit of his own before Dalbec drew a walk to load the bases. Richmond starter Alfred Gutierrez (6-5) issued a wild pitch to bring Duran home and break up the tie. Joey Curletta walked to re-load the bases and chase Gutierrez from the game.

Reliever Raffi Vizcaino surrendered a bases-loaded single to Luke Tendler, sending two more Sea Dogs across the plate to a 4-1 advantage.

Jonah Arenado and Johneswhy Fargas scattered an RBI single each in the sixth and seventh innings to cut the lead 4-3 before Kent was retired. The southpaw finished the day after seven innings of work, limiting three runs on eight hits with three strikeouts.

Durbin Feltman and Jordan Weems combined for two innings of relief, permitting just two hits and one strikeout each to preserve the lead and take a 4-3 win. Weems picked up his sixth save in the effort.

The Sea Dogs and Bowie BaySox (Orioles affiliate) start a three-game series on Friday night (tonight) with a 7:05 first pitch from Prince George's Stadium in Bowie, Maryland. Righty Konner Wade (2-4, 3.20) takes on BaySox righty Mike Baumann (2-1. 1.16).

Radio coverage on the WPEI U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network begins at 6:50 PM. The game is available on the tune-in app and MiLB.TV.

Tickets for the next homestand are available at 207-879-9500 or seadogs.com. Book your nine-inning vacation today!