Saturday, June 30, 2012

HD Encore of The New York Metropolitan Opera production of Offenbach’s Les Contes d’ Hoffmann on Wednesday, July 11th‏

Joseph Calleja & Anna Netrebko
Ellsworth, Maine - The New York Metropolitan Opera’s series of Hi Def encores continues at The Grand with Joseph Calleja & Anna Netrebko in Jacques Offenbach’s Les Contes d’ Hoffmann on Wednesday, July 11th at 6 pm with a running time of 3 hours and two intermissions.

 Jacques Offenbach became rich and famous as a composer of operettas full of witty topical references and irresistible tunes that would come to signify everything glitzy about 19th-century Paris. But as he neared the end of his life, he craved more: acceptance as a “serious” composer. He decided to write an opera and chose the fantastical and often enigmatic stories of German writer E.T.A. Hoffmann as his material.

In bringing his vision of Hoffmann to the stage, director Bartlett Sher (director of the Broadway musicals The Light In The Piazza and South Pacific, as well as the Met’s own recent Le Comte Ory) found inspiration in the life and works of author Franz Kafka—another German Jew, living in Prague. In both E.T.A. Hoffmann and Kafka’s work, sinister, shadowy powers haunt the lead characters. And in each of Hoffmann’s tales that make up the opera’s three acts, the protagonist tries to break into what seems to be a closed world. The character’s dilemma is the same as Kafka’s and Offenbach’s, Sher explains: “It’s a matter of how an artist can feel accepted and rejected at the same time.”

Rising tenor Joseph Calleja portrays that artist, taking on Offenbach’s tour-de-force title role for the first time in his career. Anna Netrebko, Kathleen Kim, and Ekaterina Gubanova star as the women he loves and loses, and Alan Held sings the four villains. Collaborating with Sher on the design are Michael Yeargan (sets), Catherine Zuber (costumes), and James F. Ingalls (lighting), with choreography by Dou Dou Huang. James Levine conducts.

So bring a friend. Share the experience. And come see a production that Anthony Tomassini of The New York Times described as "a musically gratifying and vividly theatrical staging of a haunting and, in its way, profound work,” when The Grand presents the New York Metropolitan Opera’s Hi Def encore of Donizetti’s Anna Bolena on Wednesday, June 13th at 6 pm.

Tickets are $17 for General Admission and $8 for Youth 12 and under.  Call The Grand box office for tickets, or purchase online at www.grandonline.org.

The Grand is pleased to present high-definition productions of The New York Metropolitan Opera. Be the first to get tickets for the 2012/13 season by purchasing your tickets at The Grand. Tickets go on sale to MET Members on Friday August 24th at 9:00am, Grand Members on Friday August 31st at 9:00am and General Public on Tuesday September 4th at 9:00am. The season opens with Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore starring Anna Netrebko on October 13th at 1pm.

A full schedule can be found online at www.grandonline.org. Or find The Grand on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Grand-Auditorium/112755987339.

Get Well Rally & Fundraiser planned for injured boy

A Get Well Rally & Fundraiser for Noah!
will be held from 5 to 8 p.m., Monday, July 9, at
Trackside Station, 4 Union St., Rockland.
Noah Keene lost his hand in an accident June 26 and
had to undergo surgery at
Massachusetts General Hospital to have it reattached.

Rockland, Maine - Trackside Station will host a Get Well Rally & Fundraiser Monday, July 9, from 5 to 8 p.m. to benefit Noah Keene, the 5-year-old boy who was injured June 26 and had to have his hand re-attached.

The evening will feature musical entertainment by Stefan Low, a raffle featuring a variety of locally donated prizes, an auction and a 50-50 raffle. Trackside will have food and bar service during the event and will donate a portion of sales to the Keene family.

Support since the event was announced has been tremendous and close to 100 local businesses and community members have stepped up to donate items for the event.

While the Keene family will not be able to attend the event, arrangements are being made for them to see what is going on via Skype.

If you can't attend but would like to make a donation to the Keene family please stop by any TD Bank branch to donate to the Noah Keene Support Fund. All money raised will go to the family to help with expenses related to Noah's injury.

For updates on the event and a complete list of donated items to be included in the raffle and auction check out Trackside Station’s facebook page at www.Facebook.com/TracksideStation. Trackside Station is located at 4 Union St., Rockland. Call Kelly Woods at 594-7500 for information about the event. To donate an item, please contact Tiffany Monroe at 542-8896 or email tiffany.monroe@yahoo.com.

Wiscasset Ford 8, Rockland Cafe 0


Friday June 29, 2012

At Morrill Field in Rockland

Daren Wood fired a 3 hitter, striking out 5 and only walking one to lead Wiscasset Ford to an 8-0 win over Rockland Café.  Wood added 2 hits and 2 RBIs to pace Wiscasset Ford (4-5).  Zac Roman, Nick Mazurek and Isaiah Green each singled for Rockland Café (7-4).

Wiscasset Ford (4-5)  2-0-1  1-0-3  1 --- 8-7-1

Rockland Café (7-4)  0-0-0  0-0-0  0 --- 0-3-6

Pitching

Rockland Café

Ryan Allender (Loss) 5.2 Inn – 7R – 3ER – 7H – 6K – 3BB

Zach Peaco                 1.1 Inn – 1R – 1ER – 0H – 1K – 3BB

Wiscasset Ford

Daren Wood (Win)     7 Inn – 0R – 0ER – 3H – 5K – 1BB

Rockland Café Offense

Zac Roman (single, stolen bases), Nick Mazurek (single, stolen base), Isaiah Green (single)

Wiscasset Ford Offense

Travis Padilla (single, 2 runs, RBI, 3 stolen bases), Daren Wood (single, double, run, 2 RBIs), Nate Mills (double), Jacob Allen (2 singles, 3 runs, RBI, stolen base), Grant Hefler (run), Andy Hutchins (single, run), Logan Orr (RBI) 

Rockland Cafe’s final regular season game has been forfeited.  The game, a make-up game against Camden Rockport that was rained out on both Tuesday and Wednesday, was rescheduled for Saturday; however a pre-planned Summer Basketball camp will leave Rockland with too few players to field a team.  Rockland Café will finish the regular season with a record of 7-5.

Rockland Café will play next Thursday in the Quarterfinals of the Midcoast Babe Ruth League against an opponent to be determined.

"Discovering Maine's Rocky Coast With Kids" by Jennifer Ellen Parker

Maine Author Jennifer Ellen Parker 
Rocky Coast News as proud to introduce Maine Author Jennifer Ellen Parker to our readers.  Her weekly column "Discovering Maine's Rocky Coast With Kids"  will be featured every weekend.  Come along as she explores the wonders of the state of Maine with her kids.  Her latest column can be viewed at:
http://rockycoastnews.blogspot.com/2012/06/discovering-maines-rocky-coast-portland.html 
 Jennifer Ellen Parker was born in 1971. She grew up in a small lake village in New Hampshire. She moved to Maine as a teenager and has lived there ever since. Parker is a mom of three, an entrepreneur, and a dreamer. At age forty she realized her life long dream of becoming a published writer and is now growing a publishing company as she continues to wonder and discover all that life has to offer.  


Jennifer Ellen Parker's book "A Little Lift" is available from Amazon. com.  Jennifer Parker’s intent from the beginning was not to write a book, never mind publishing one.  Her intent was to cope with three of the most stressful life changes.  She began writing every day in September of 2010.  She created a facebook page and began to share about her day and what she could take from her struggle and turn it into something positive.  Her goal was to literally turn dark into light.  Friends began to comment on her postings, especially as they began to chronicle her personal trials and tribulations and her reactions to them in her life.  Friends then began to share her posts with their friends and without marketing efforts the facebook page quickly spread across the country and to readers in fifteen countries.
A Little Lift became known locally as the story of the woman in town who lost her business, her home, her marriage, and her father, yet refused to give up on life.  People, male and female, primarily ages 34-43 began to follow her journey.  Jennifer refused to hold back, she shared her raw emotions on her best and worst days with family, friends, acquaintances, and eventually strangers.  Followers of the facebook page began suggesting that A Little Lift be turned into a book, a series of books that individuals could pick up with their hands and mark pages that particularly struck a chord with themselves and their lives.
Just months ago, A Little Lift, was mentioned on Squire Rushnell’s personal facebook page.  Squire Rushnell, author of the NY Times best selling God Winks series, shared with more than 100,000 of his fans to take a look at A Little Lift.
“Jennifer Parker writes, reminding me of this quote from one of my books:


‘When someone’s lost, aimless, and adrift
Take the time, give ‘em a lift.
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery
But today, you can be their gift’
From WGWY pg. 162


We look forward to great things from "Discovering Maine's Rocky Coast With Kids".

Wieber posts top all-around score at 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics


SAN JOSE, California – Jordyn Wieber of DeWitt, Mich./Gedderts' Twistars USA, posted a 61.700 in the all-around to take the all-around lead at the halfway point of the U.S. Olympic Trials – Gymnastics at the HP Pavilion at San Jose (Calif.). Gabby Douglas of Virginia Beach, Va./Chow's Gymnastics and Dance, followed in second at 61.400, with Alexandra Raisman of Needham, Mass./Brestyan's American Gymnastics, rounding out the top three with her 60.300. Competition continues tomorrow with the final day of men's competition beginning at 4 p.m. ET on NBC Sports.

Wieber, who comes into this competition as the reigning U.S and World all-around champion, started on vault with a 15.900 for her Amanar. On the uneven bars, Wieber was solid, upgrading her dismount to a full-twisting double layout, scoring 15.300. Wieber showed precision and calmness on the balance beam to post a 15.050. In the final rotation, Wieber dazzled on the floor, sticking her double twisting, double back mount for a 15.400.

"Today went pretty well. My main goal was to go out there and do confident routines," Wieber said. "The crowd was awesome – I love seeing the stands full and hearing them cheer before I go up for a routine."

Douglas shook off an error on the uneven bars to score a 15.250 before moving to the balance beam, where she was solid through a standing full and back handspring, back handspring, double pike dismount (14.900). Douglas had the crowd clapping along to her energetic floor routine in rotation three, executing a one-and-a-half to triple full mount, good for a 15.450. Douglas finished tonight's competition with an Amanar vault, earning a 15.800. Her coach, Liang Chow, caught her up in an embrace on the podium.

"I'm very happy, but I had a couple of mistakes that I'll work on during tomorrow's training," Douglas said. "I want to comeback and fight on Sunday."

Rounding out the top three was Raisman, who was solid throughout the entire competition. Raisman began her competition on the vault, performing an Amanar for a 15.550. In rotation two, she posted a 14.200 on the uneven bars. On the balance beam, her steady routine and nearly stuck Patterson dismount was rewarded with a 14.950. The final rotation moved Raisman to the floor where she performed to 'Hava Nagila' and dismounted with a double pike split jump for a 15.600.

"I'm really happy with how today went," said Raisman. "I didn't know how I was going to feel competing at Olympic Trials, but I'm just proud that everyone went out and had a great competition."

Elizabeth Price of Coopersburg, Pa./Parkettes, posted the fourth best score in the all-around, 59.600, behind a huge 16.050 score in the first rotation for her Amanar vault. Price also scored 14.500, uneven bars; 14.150, balance beam; and 14.900, floor exercise.

In fifth place in the all-around after the first day of competition is Kyla Ross of Aliso Viejo, Calif./Gym-Max, with a 59.400. Ross recorded her highest score of the day, a 15.500, on the uneven bars, where she performed a Maloney to Pak salto and a stuck double layout dismount. Ross earned scores of 14.500, vault; 14.900, beam; and 14.500, floor.

The highest scores for each event were: McKayla Maroney of Long Beach, Calif./AOGC, vault, 16.100; Anna Li of Aurora, Ill./Legacy Elite Gymnastics, and Ross, uneven bars, 15.500; Sarah Finnegan of St. Louis Mo./Great American Gymnastics Express, balance beam, 15.100; and Raisman, floor, 15.600.

Maroney also had the highest two vault average score of the meet, with a 15.750.

Single-session tickets range in price from $36-$102, including facility fees. The prices vary according to seat location and session. Four multi-session and all-session ticket packages are still available. Multi-session packages, ranging in price from $78 to $236, include a 3-day weekend package; a two-day women's package; and a finals package featuring the final day of competition for both men and women.

All tickets may be purchased through ticketmaster.com, by phone at 800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster outlets and the HP Pavilion Ticket Office. In recognition of Visa's long-time support, USA Gymnastics is proud to accept only Visa at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics, along with cash. For more information and details on the ticket packages, go to www.sanjose2012.com.



Television, webcast and YouTube coverage
NBC Sports Network, formerly Versus, will broadcast the first day of men's competition live on June 28 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. ET. Then, NBC will broadcast live coverage on television and at NBCOlympics.com of the remaining three days of competition: women's day one, June 29, 9-11 p.m. ET; men's final day, June 30, 4-6 p.m. ET; and women's final day, July 1, 9-11 p.m. ET.

Television coverage of the women's competitions on June 29 and July 1 will be tape delayed in the Pacific and Mountain time zones but available live nationwide online. For a complete schedule of NBC's coverage, click here.

USA Gymnastics will provide coverage of podium training prior to the event, as well as post-competition interviews and more on its official YouTube channel, http://www.youtube.com/usagymnaticsorg.

Ways to follow
Online. The 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics and its ancillary activities are easier than ever to follow online. Schedules and general information for both fan activities and the competition, including the official event program, start lists, live scoring and more are available at www.SanJose2012.com, which is easily viewable on smart phones and other digital devices.

Social Media. USA Gymnastics are connecting with fans on Facebook and Twitter, providing live updates and exclusive content including videos and photos from the Visa Championships. Gymnastics fans can follow the action easily on Twitter by using the official hashtag of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics, #SanJose2012.

Fan Activities. From morning fitness at the Circle of the Palms to the Visa Fan Fest and the AT&T Block Party outside the HP Pavilion, fans will have plenty of opportunities for fun while they enjoy the exciting week of competition in San Jose. Click here for a complete schedule of fan activities.

Background information

HP Pavilion. HP Pavilion at San Jose, managed by Sharks Sports & Entertainment, hosts nearly 100 sporting events annually including more than 40 San Jose Sharks regular season home games and the SAP Open men's professional tennis tournament. The building hosts approximately 170 events every year -- including Olympic athletes, Grammy award-winners and a variety of family and children's favorites that account for more than 200 event days. Pollstar, the leading concert industry trade magazine, nominated HP Pavilion at San Jose as "Arena of the Year" for 2005 and 2007. In 2007, Pollstar also recognized HP Pavilion at San Jose based on non-sports attendance as fourth in North America, top 10 in the world. Over the past 10 years, HP Pavilion at San Jose has consistently been in the Top 5 in North America and top 10 in the world.

San Jose Sports Authority. The San Jose Sports Authority is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the City of San Jose's economic development, visibility and civic pride through sports. Serving as the City's sports commission since its inception in 1991, the Sports Authority has provided leadership and support to attract and host hundreds of sporting events in San Jose and the South Bay. The Sports Authority also supports and operates community, youth and amateur sports programs, including the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame, The First Tee of San Jose, and the REACH Youth Scholarship Program. To learn more, visit www.sjsa.org.

City of San Jose. From its founding in 1777 as California's first city, San Jose has been a leader, driven by its spirit of innovation. Today, San Jose stands as the largest city in Northern California and the Capital of Silicon Valley—the world's leading center of innovation. The city, the 10th largest in the United States, is committed to remaining a top-ranked place to do business, to work and to live. For more information, visit www.sanjoseca.gov.

San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau (SJCVB). The San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau (SJCVB), a 25 year old organization focused on enhancing the image and economic well being of San Jose, is managed by Team San Jose, a unique customer service model that works in partnership with local hoteliers, organized labor, local arts leadership and business community to provide a one-team approach to all event-planning needs. Team San Jose manages the San Jose Convention Center and multiple theaters in Downtown San Jose, including the San Jose Civic, Parkside Hall, Center for the Performing Arts, California Theatre and Montgomery Theater. For more information, visit www.sanjose.org.

San Jose Hotels Inc. (SJHI). San Jose Hotels Inc., is a hotels-led, non-profit business improvement district representing 35 San Jose-based hotels. SJHI leverages destination investment focused on event sponsorship, marketing and public relations to attract conventions, events and meetings to San Jose through a unique partnership with Team San Jose and the SJCVB.

Discovering Maine's Rocky Coast: Portland Schooner Co,


By Maine Author, Jennifer Ellen Parker

001-The sun warmed our cheeks and glistened on the water as we waited dockside to board the Bagheera last week.  We had made the hour drive to Portland from South Berwick, Maine with great hope and anticipation that our first sailing excursion would be something we wouldn’t soon forget.  I found the directions on Portland Schooner Co’s website and smiled as I realized it was pretty much a straight shot from 295.  The girls were quiet and as we drove up 95 North with the windows down and the radio playing their favorite songs.  I took a deep breath, this was to be one of our first excursions together this summer and I wanted it to set the tone for the rest of the season of our “staycation” in Maine.

Photo by Jennifer Ellen Parker
We parked the car near the top of the garage.  We generously applied lotion outside of the car to our faces, arms, and legs and hurried down the stairs to find the ticket booth on the pier.  We spotted the tall masts of the schooners and quickened our steps even though we had arrived early.   The girls squeezed my hands and looked up at me with smiles decorating their faces.  Sailing had been something I had wanted to try since I was a little girl and used to listen to my Dad’s stories about sailing around the world.  We were welcomed by a woman with an incredibly warm personality at the ticket booth.   The girls asked if they could get a hat to keep the sun from their eyes on the boat.   I nodded yes and they moved to the back of the shed to pick out their colors.

As we waited to board the schooner from the eighteen hundreds, we were joined by a handful of other families waiting to set sail.  There were a lot of young children and the girls pulled in close to my legs, a little uncertain of what we were about to do.  We held hands as we made our way down the steep ramp and found our seats near the bow of the boat.  The salty air filled our senses and we sat back into our experience, Anna began taking pictures as we listened to the safety precautions.  The crew undid the ropes and the captain motored away from the dock.  When we were a safe distance away the captain gave the order for the massive canvas sails to be raised.  I can barely describe the quiet magnitude of the experience I shared with my two girls sailing for the first time.  As we cruised, I closed my eyes and tried to etch the moment into my heart knowing it was one I wouldn’t want to forget.    The crew was friendly, approachable, and capable.  Near the end of the sail, Nathan gathered some of the children near one of the masts and taught them how to make daisy chain lanyards.  Libby looked up at me excited, wanting to know if she could do the “craft” with her big sister Anna.  I nodded and she made her way over to the small group.  As the Bagheera docked and it was time for us to leave, the girls turned to me and asked if we could do it again.  I nodded one more time.  The sailing trip had been the perfect start to our summer vacation.

There’s something uniquely charming about discovering adventures in your own backyard.   We are looking forward to uncovering many more this summer in Maine and hope you will enjoy sharing them with us.

Sea Dogs Bite Fisher Cats 9-3


Hazelbaker 3-for-4 with 4 RBI 

Portland, Maine - Jeremy Hazelbaker went 3-for-4 with two doubles and four RBI and scored a run to lead the Portland Sea Dogs (33-46) to a 9-3 victory over the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (30-48) Friday night at Hadlock Field before a crowd of 5,007.  The Sea Dogs earned a split of the four game series.

Stolmy Pimentel (2-4) earned his second Double-A win hurling six innings holding the Blue Jays affiliate to three runs on four hits.  Pimentel walked one and struck out four.

Derrik Gibson broke a 3-3 tie in the bottom of the sixth with an infield single to score Marquez Smith who had doubled earlier in the inning.

Ryan Goins led-off the game by sending a Pimentel offering into the Sea Dogs bullpen as the Fisher Cats took a quick 1-0 lead.

The Sea Dogs responded with a three run third inning.  Derrik Gibson scored on a Jackie Bradley Jr. RBI single and Jeremy Hazelbaker added a two run double off Fisher Cats starter Chad Jenkins (4-7).

The Fisher Cats fought right back in the top of the fourth inning.  Mike McDade and Mark Sobolewski produced back to back singles.  McDade scored on a wild pitch from Pimentel and Sobolewski came home on a Kevin Howard ground out to second.

Chris Balcom-Miller came on to pitch in the seventh inning looking to preserve a 4-3 lead.  Brad Glenn greeted him with a lead-off double and Kenen Bailli followed with a single setting up a first and third situation with no outs.  Balcom-Miller was able to escape the jam as Bailli was picked-off. He then struck out Joel Galarraga and got Justin Jackson to fly out to center.

The Sea Dogs exploded for five runs in the eighth inning highlighted by a Hazelbaker two run double.  Bryce Brentz added a two run single and Bradley Jr. had a bases loaded walk.

Bradley continued his hot Double-A start with a 1-for-4 performance with a pair of runs scored and two RBI.  He has hit safely in eight of nine Double-A starts.

The Sea Dogs will begin a five game series against the Trenton Thunder, the Double-A affiliate of the New York Yankees, on Saturday at 6:00 PM at Hadlock Field.  The Sea Dogs will send All-Star left-handed starter Chris Hernandez (4-6, 2.87) to the mound.  Righty Dellin Betances (0-0, 0.00) will get the nod for the Thunder.  All of the action can be heard on 95.5/95.9 FM WPEI.  Boston Bruins forward Shawn Thornton will be appearing at Hadlock Field.  Thornton will throw out a ceremonial first-pitch and be available for autographs.  Tickets are available and can be ordered by calling the Sea Dogs Ticket Office at 207-879-9500 or online at www.seadogs.com.

Friday, June 29, 2012

21st Annual Gardens in the Watershed Tour July 15


A creative backyard urban garden on the tour
with vegetables, perennials and garden sculpture

The eagerly awaited annual Georges River Land Trust Gardens in the Watershed tour will take place on Sunday, July 15 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., rain or shine. This year’s tour will feature seven lovely gardens in the towns of Rockland and Spruce Head. The tour is the primary fundraising event of the Georges River Land Trust.

            Tickets and brochures for the tour are available at The Reading Corner and Rock City Books and Coffee in Rockland, Planet Toys in Camden, Hedgerow in Tenants Harbor, Agway in Union, The Personal Book Shop in Thomaston, and Brambles in Belfast, as well as at the GRLT office, 8 North Main Street, Rockland for $25 each. Tickets are also available for $28 on tour day at any of the gardens. A gourmet bag lunch catered by the Home Kitchen Cafe is also available for pre-order. Orders must be received in the GRLT office by July 11th.

The Gardens in the Watershed tour is unique in that it features gardens, which for the most part, have been created and maintained by the garden owners. The seven gardens in this year’s tour are diverse, highlight many different aspects of gardening, and are in enchanting settings and sure to please! Photos and descriptions of the gardens can be seen at www.grlt/org/gardentour_2012_gardens.html.
                     
            In addition to enjoying the gorgeous gardens, short talks will be offered at three of the gardens. Douglas Roth will give a slide presentation on Japanese gardens at Mary Ann and Church Carey’s Rackliff Island garden; Carol Yee of Carol Yee’s Collectibles will speak about Evergreen Propagation at Barbara and David Noyes’ Spruce Head Island garden; and Tony Sohn from The Art & Rock Shop in Bangor will talk about “ The Birds and the Bees” at Nina Scott-Hansen’s Rockland garden.

            Raffle tickets are available for $3 each for a variety of items, including a watercolor print by a local artist, 2-hours of garden design or labor, a crabapple tree, perennials, gift baskets and a variety of gift certificates from local nurseries, a hardscape business, and artisans.

            The Georges River Land Trust, committed to encouraging citizens to discover the river and care for the land throughout the St. George River watershed, is pleased to have the support of many local business and individual sponsors. The major sponsor again this year is Bangor Savings Bank. For further information please contact the GRLT office at 594-5166, info@grlt.org or the Land Trust website at www.grlt.org.

Maine DEP Data Shows State's Coastal Beach Water Quality Best Since 2008

*-More than two-thirds of Maine's 61 coastal public-access beaches had no water quality issues in 2011 that led to an advisory or closure posting, resulting in the beaches being open and safe for swimming 98.2 percent of the time-* 
AUGUSTA - Mainers heading to the state's coastal beaches to beat this weekend's forecasted heat wave will find them clean, open and safe for swimming. 

Data released today by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection shows the water quality at Maine's 61 public access beaches, comprising more than 30 miles of the state's coastline, is the best it has been since 2008. 

The department-managed Maine Healthy Beaches program relies on funding from the federal Environmental Protection Agency and staff support from the University of Maine Cooperative Extension/Sea Grant to monitor recreational water quality and protect public health at Maine's beautiful beaches, which span from Fort Foster in Kittery up the coast to Bar Harbor, which boasts three public beaches. Beaches are monitored weekly by program volunteers, municipal staff and state park employees from Memorial Day through Labor Day, with water samples analyzed for the enterococcus bacteria, which is an indication of the presence of fecal contamination from humans and animals including dogs and waterfowl. 

When bacteria levels exceed the EPA established limitations, beach managers in conjunction with program staff will post an advisory -or in worst case scenarios, a closure notice- at all major public access points to the beach and online athttp://www.mainehealthybeaches.org to discourage recreational contact because of the increased risk of beach users contracting a waterborne illness. 

In 2011, the program reported that beach advisory days were down nearly 50 percent from the previous summer, with 51 water quality events totaling 112 days of posted advisories, compared to the 71 water quality events totaling 207 days of posted advisories in 2010. 

More than two-thirds of the 61 beaches had no water quality issues in 2011 that led to an advisory posting with 98.1 percent of beach days open and safe for swimming, compared to the previous year where nearly half of the beaches had an advisory posted at least once. Nearly all of the advisories in 2011 were two-day events -the minimum timeframe to allow for resampling and lab analysis- with follow-up testing finding that beach water was safe for swimming. 

The improvements are especially impressive given an increase of 3 inches of rainfall from 2010 (10.48 inches) to 2011 (13.45 inches), with heavy rains often initiating water quality issues as rainwater can wash pollutants into rivers and streams before it eventually ends up at the beach. 

"Maine should take pride that its storied salt-water beaches are not only beautiful but they are incredibly clean. As summer sets in and Mainers and visitors alike head to the beach, they can be confident what they'll find is almost always open and safe for swimming," said DEP Commissioner Patricia Aho. "On behalf of all who enjoy the Maine coast, I want to thank the many local partners and public beachgoers for their stewardship of this invaluable resource."

Healthy habits for beach goers include avoiding swimming after heavy rainfall; not ingesting beach water; taking children to the bathroom often and utilizing swim diapers; disposing of trash and pet waste properly; and not discharging untreated boat sewage.

Beyond monitoring beach water quality for recreational uses, the program helps communities identify, eliminate and prevent sources of pollution and the effectiveness of those efforts are reflected in the improvements seen in 2011. 

Among the past pursued projects that have led to enhanced water quality at local beaches were wastewater infrastructure improvements in Lincolnville, restoration efforts in the Cape Neddick River and the expansion of sewer infrastructure to more users in Ogunquit. For more information about Maine beaches and any posted advisories, visithttp://www.mainehealthybeaches.org

Job Fair July 9 at CareerCenter in Lewiston

Lewiston, Maine - The Lewiston CareerCenter is hosting a job fair on Monday, July 9, 2012, from noon to 4 p.m. Employers who are hiring will be on hand to recruit for their open customer service, sales and call center positions. 

Participating employers include Carbonite, Great Falls Marketing, Notify MD, TD Bank, T-Mobile and others. Other companies interested in participating should contact the CareerCenter for more information.

People looking for a job or who are interested in changing employers should bring their current resumes and dress as if they were going to a job interview. The CareerCenter is located at 5 Mollison Way in Lewiston.

Employers and jobseekers with questions about the job fair should contact Mary LaFontaine, the Lewiston CareerCenter manager, at lewiston.careercenter@maine.gov or by phone (207) 753-9001 or 1-800-741-2991. TTY users call Maine relay 711.

The Maine Department of Labor's 12 CareerCenters offer specialized employment and training services for people looking for jobs, whether they are unemployed or looking to change careers. The centers have specialists located on-site to assist veterans, youth, people with disabilities and people wanting to connect with employers using new technologies. CareerCenters work with employers to recruit staff and identify appropriate training support, tax credit opportunities and bonding programs.

Through the CareerCenters, veterans and eligible spouses are given priority of service under most Maine Department of Labor-funded programs.

For more information about employment and training services throughout the state of Maine, contact the CareerCenter at (207) 623-7981 (TTY users call Maine relay 711) or visit www.mainecareercenter.com.

Lewiston CareerCenter Wins Award for Service to Lewiston and Auburn

Lewiston, Maine - The Lewiston CareerCenter has earned Lewiston's and Auburn's Economic Achievement Award. The award recognized that the CareerCenter provides "a critical service to both local employers and job seekers, diversifying, strengthening and growing our economy," wrote Lincoln Jeffers, assistant to the administrator of the City of Lewiston. The award was presented at the Lewiston Auburn Economic Growth Council's Annual Dinner on May 22, 2012. 

The Lewiston CareerCenter is one of 12 located throughout the state. The CareerCenters form the statewide delivery network of the Bureau of Employment Services within the Maine Department of Labor.

The centers serve both employers and jobseekers and have specialists located on-site to assist veterans, youth, people with disabilities and people who are unsure of how to reconnect with employers using new technologies. People who are unemployed as well as those who want to get a better job or change careers access the centers' services.

Jeffers noted that "the CareerCenter quickly rose to the top" when considering which organizations deserved recognition with this award. He added that "[Mary LaFontaine, the Lewiston CareerCenter manager] and the CareerCenter have been integral to our business attraction efforts. … Your work with employees has strengthened our labor pool."

Commissioner of Labor Robert Winglass praised the work of the Lewiston CareerCenter. "The Lewiston CareerCenter has a top-notch team who are caring members of the community." He added, "They understand that businesses need a strong workforce to compete in today's economy." The Award presentation reads, "‘The Lewiston CareerCenter … has played a critical role in helping attract new business to the area, help local businesses meet their staffing needs, and help residents secure employment or freshen up their skill sets. They organize and host job fairs, can assist with recruitment and provide access to state and federal training programs and tax credits."

It goes on to recognize the active role the CareerCenter plays in recruitment efforts and assisting businesses considering locating by providing an understanding of the local labor force, its strengths and capacities. "The cities are pleased to recognize and celebrate the critical role that the CareerCenter plays in serving the employment needs of local residents and businesses, and adding to the strength and diversity of the regional economy."

For more information about employment services available to businesses and jobseekers through Maine's CareerCenters, call at (207) 623-7981 (TTY users call Maine Relay 711) or visit www.mainecareercenter.com.

Mabel Cabot will be presenting a slide/lecture at Thomaston Public Library

Thomaston, Maine - Mabel Cabot will be presenting a slide/lecture about her work at the Thomaston Public Library on Wednesday July 11  at 7 PM. The presentation will take place in Room 204 of the Academy building at 60 Main Street. The program is the first of this year's  Friends of the Thomaston Library series, Artists and Authors Among Us. Ms. Cabot will be discussing her book and showing slides from Vanished Kingdoms: A Woman Explorer in Tibet, China and Mongolia, 1921-1925.

Vanished Kingdoms  brings to life the unique peoples and landscapes encountered by Janet Wulsin (Cabot's mother) during her four-year exploration of Asia.From the Gobi Desert to the Yellow River. Ms. Wulsin and her then-husband, Frederick Wulsin, traveled on camelback taking pictures of the local people. From village temples to kitchen utensils, these photographs and slides capture the daily culture and historic traditions of remote peoples, still living in almost complete isolation at the time of Ms. Wulsin's trip.

In order to construct her portrait of the Wulsin expedition, Mabel H. Cabot drew on archives at the Harvard University's Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology — as well as records at Haverford and Bowdoin colleges, the Smithsonian Institution and The National Geographic Society.
She also traveled to China in order to gain a first-hand perspective on Janet Wulsin’s experience.

Ms. Cabot has written for The Washington Post, the Washington Star and Smithsonian magazine. She founded a public relations firm in Washington, D.C., served at the White House during the Reagan

Administration and worked as the Director of Corporate Programming at Ford Motor Company.Ms. Cabot received her bachelor's degree from Smith College. She lives in Cambridge Massachusetts and Thomaston, Maine — and has four children and four grandchildren.

Following the presentation there will be light refreshments for all in attendance.

The Series, Artists and Authors Among Us,  is free to the public but donations to the library will be greatly appreciated. For further information, please contact the library at 354-2453

SafetyWorks! Consultation Program for Private Businesses Earns Praise

Augusta, Maine - The Maine Department of Labor's SafetyWorks! Program provides safety and health audits to help businesses identify hazards and reduce or eliminate the risk of injuries and illnesses. This program is provided at no cost to the business as a service of the Labor Department. 

Upon management's request, SafetyWorks! provides a trained consultant with industry-specific expertise who will review the facility by appointment. The consultation may include such elements as recognizing safety hazards, sampling for air and noise exposures, recommending ways to reduce or to eliminate hazards, developing or improving a safety program, complying with federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations and identifying training needs. SafetyWorks! is not OSHA and cannot issue fines or citations to private businesses. 

Commissioner of Labor Robert J. Winglass described four key ways in which the SafetyWorks! program helps Maine businesses, "First and foremost, it improves safety, which means fewer people are hurt. Injury prevention is a top priority." 

Winglass continued, "But being safe is also smart business. Fewer injuries means less productivity lost while injured workers are treated and heal. It keeps workers' compensation claims low, which helps lower the employer's insurance costs. Last, it can save a private company thousands of dollars in OSHA fines by alerting managers to potential violations and suggesting improvements."

The Wiscasset firm Rynel, a division of Molnlycke Healthcare Company, has been participating in the SafetyWorks! program since 2007. The company manufactures specialty absorbent polyurethane foam products. Air quality monitoring and safety in the manufacturing process itself are of particular concern to management. Rynel's safety committee, involving both employees and supervisors, takes an active role in and is responsible for providing a safety and health work environment. When a safety or health concern is raised, the committee takes immediate steps to correct it. 

Rynel's manufacturing manager, Joseph C. Giampetro, thanked SafetyWorks! staff after a recent OSHA inspection found no violations. Because OSHA violations can trigger fines that often run into the tens of thousands of dollars, having a clean inspection saves companies significant money. 

Giampetro attributed their clean inspection to participation in the SafetyWorks! program. "I want to thank both [of the consultants] and SafetyWorks! for all the time and effort you have put in with Rynel to help us get to this point," he wrote. The OSHA inspector "spent some time in the shop looking at all of the shop equipment. I am sure without your tough inspections over the past couple of years we would not have been as successful."

The OSHA inspector also recognized the value of Rynel's participation in the program, noted Giampetro. "He had good things to say about both [SafetyWorks! consultants] and SafetyWorks! in general and strongly suggested that Rynel continue utilizing your services." 

To request a consultation or learn more about the program, call toll-free 1-877-SAFE 345 (1-877-723-3345; TTY users call Maine Relay 711) or visit the SafetyWorks! website, http://www.safetyworksmaine.com . While SafetyWorks! helps businesses of any size, priority is given to small businesses. The program trains about 8,000 people and consults at nearly 1,000 worksites in Maine annually, and it is funded through a combination of federal and state funds.

US Department of Labor approves Maine request to modify and extend WIA State Plan and waivers

Maine - The US Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (TA) has approved Maine's request to modify and extend its Workforce Investment Act (WIA) State Plan and waivers. A copy of the notice is included below:

June 28, 2012

Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Washington, D.C. 20210

The Honorable Paul R. LePage Governor of Maine 1 State House Station Augusta, Maine 04333-0054

Dear Governor LePage:

This letter provides approval of the modification of Maine's State Plan for Title I of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and Wagner-Peyser Act (W-P) State Plan for the period of July 1,2012 through December 31,2012. The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) received the State's proposed modification on May 21,2012. This letter also responds to Maine's request for new and extended waivers. Training and Employment Guidance Letter (TEGL) No. 21-11, issued on March 27, 2012, provides guidance for states to secure approval of their WIAIW-P State Plans and waivers for PY 2012. In accordance with TEGL No. 21-11, the State must submit a full five-year WIA/W-P State Plan and annual W-P Agricultural Outreach Plan by September 15,2012.

Plan Review and Approval

ETA has reviewed Maine's State Plan modification in accordance with Title I of WI A, the Wagner-Peyser Act, the corresponding regulations, the WIAIW-P Planning Guidance (73 Fed. Reg. 72853, December 1, 2008. Pursuant to 20 CFR 661.230(e), this letter constitutes a written determination under WIA Section 112 (29 USC 2822) that ETA is approving the modification to Maine's State Plan for the period July 1,2012 through December 31,2012. The State already received its formula allotment for the WIA Youth program for PY 2012. The State is eligible to receive WIA formula allotments for the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs under the PY 2012 Annual Funding Agreement. The W-P Annual Funding Agreement on PY 2012IFiscai Year 2013 will provide the W-P Act initial base allocation of PY 2012 funds.

Performance Levels

Maine requested to temporarily extend its existing PY 2011 WIA and W-P performance goals for a portion of PY 20 12. ETA has incorporated these performance goals, identified as PY 2012 performance goals, into the Regional and National Office copies of the State Plan. Please include these PY 2012 goals in the State's official copy of the State Plan. As required by TEGL 21-11, the state must renegotiate its new PY 2012 goals upon submission of its full State Plan. 2

Waivers

As part of the State's modification of the WIA/W-P Act State Plan, and as described in TEGL No. 21-11, the State requested temporary extensions of Maine's PY 2011 waivers of statutory and regulatory requirements under WIA for PY 2012. The State also submitted a request for three new waivers (copies enclosed). The State's request for new waivers is written in the format identified in WIA Section I 89(i)(4)(B) and 20 CFR 661.420(c). The disposition of the State's waiver extensions as well as its submission of new waiver requests is outlined below. This action is taken under the Secretary's authority at WIA Section 189(i) to waive certain requirements of WIA Title I, Subtitles Band E, and Sections 8-10 of the Wagner-Peyser Act. Waiver Extensions

Waiver of the provision at 20 CFR 663.530 that prescribes a time limit on the period of initial eligibility for training providers.

The State was previously granted a waiver of the time limit on the period of initial eligibility of training providers provided at 20 CFR 663.530. The State is granted an extension of this waiver through December 31, 2012 .. Under the waiver, the State is allowed to postpone the determination of subsequent eligibility of training providers. The waiver also allows the State to provide an opportunity for training providers to re-enroll and be considered enrolled as initially eligible providers.

Waiver of WIA Section 134(a) to permit local areas to use a portion of local funds for incumbent worker training.

The State was previously granted a waiver to permit local areas to conduct allowable statewide activities as defined under WIA Section I 34(a)(3) with local WIA formula funding, specifically incumbent worker training. The State is granted an extension of this waiver through December . 31,2012. Under this waiver, the State is permitted to allow local areas to use up to 10 percent of local Dislocated Worker funds and up to 10 percent of local Adult funds for incumbent worker training only as part of a layoff aversion strategy. Use of Adult funds must be restricted to serving lower income adults under this waiver. ETA believes limiting incumbent worker training to the specified level and requiring it to be a part of layoff aversion is the best use of funds in the current economic climate where serving unemployed workers is a paramount responsibility of the workforce system. All training delivered under this waiver is restricted to skill attainment activities. Local areas must continue to conduct the required local employment and training activities at WIA Section 134( d), and the State is required to report performance outcomes for any individual served under this waiver in the Workforce Investment Act Standardized Record Data system (WIASRD), field 309. TEGL No. 26-09, Section 7A, "Workforce Investment Act (WIA) Waiver Policy and Waiver Decisions for PY 2009 and 2010" and TEGL No. 30-09, "Layoff Aversion Definition and the Appropriate Use of Incumbent Worker Training for Layoff Aversion Using a Waiver" provide policy guidance related to implementation of this waiver.

New Waiver Requests

Waiver of the required 50 percent employer contribution for customized training at WIA Section 101(8)(C).

The State has requested a waiver of the required 50 percent employer contribution for customized training to permit the use of a sliding scale for the employer contribution based on the size of the business. The State is granted this waiver through December 31, 2012. Under the waiver, the following sliding scale is permitted: 1) no less than 10 percent match for employers with 50 or fewer employees, and 2) no less than 25 percent match for employers with 51-250 employees. For employers with more than 250 employees, the current statutory requirements (50 percent contribution) continue to apply. When determining the funding source for customized training, the State must use the appropriate program funds for the appropriate WIA eligible population. The State and local area may provide customized training to individuals 18 years of age or older with WIA Adult funds and must provide priority to low-income individuals when funds are limited; the State and local area may provide customized training to dislocated workers with WIA Dislocated Worker funds. Customized training provided with statewide funds must serve WIA eligible individuals.

Waiver to permit the State to replace the performance measures at WIA Section 136(b) with the common measures.

The State has requested a waiver that allows the State to replace the 17 performance measures under WIA Section 136(b) with the common measures. The State is granted this waiver through December 31, 2012.

This waiver permits the State to negotiate and report WIA outcomes against the common performance measures only, rather than the performance measures described at WIA Section 136(b). The State will no longer negotiate and report to ETA on the following WIA measures: WIA adult and dislocated worker credential rates; participant and employer customer satisfaction; older youth measures; and younger youth measures. The State will use the three adult common performance measures to negotiate goals and report outcomes for the WIA Adult and WIA Dislocated Worker programs. The State will use the three youth common performance measures to negotiate goals and report outcomes for the WIA Youth program. Workforce Investment Act Standardized Record Data system (WIASRD) item 619, Type of Recognized Credential, should be completed for each individual as appropriate, regardless of this waiver to report on common performance measure outcomes only.

The approved waivers are incorporated by reference into the State's WIA Grant Agreement, as provided for under paragraph 3 of the executed Agreement, and this constitutes a modification of the State Plan. A copy of this letter should be filed with the State's WIA Grant Agreement and the approved State Plan. In addition, as described in TEGL No. 29-11, the State should address the impact that these waivers have had on the State's performance in the WIA annual performance report, due on October 1 of each year.

We look forward to receiving your full State Plan for PY 2012 and working together as you implement your State workforce strategies. If you have any questions related to the issues discussed above, please contact Carmen Rodriguez, the Federal Project Officer for Maine, at (617) 788-0110 or Rodriguez.carmen@dol.gov.

Sincerely,
Jane Oates, Assistant Secretary

cc: Holly O'Brien, Regional Administrator, ETA Boston Regional Office
Carmen Rodriguez, Federal Project Officer for Maine

Leyva leads all-around at halfway mark of 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics


SAN JOSE, California – Danell Leyva of Miami/Team Hilton HHonors (Universal), leads the all-around standings with a 276.500 total after the first of two days of competition at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials – Gymnastics at the HP Pavilion at San Jose (Calif.). John Orozco of the Bronx, N.Y./Team Hilton HHonors (U.S. Olympic Training Center), is second in the standings at 275.550, and Sam Mikulak of Newport Coast, Calif./University of Michigan, is third at 274.650. The first of two days of women's competition begins tomorrow in San Jose at 5:30 p.m. Pacific Time.
The all-around standings reflect scores from the two days of competition at the 2012 Visa Championships and the first day of competition at the Olympic Trials. The U.S. Olympic Trials champion will be determined with a four-day total score.
In today's competition, Mikulak posted the top score in the all-around (91.800) followed closely by Leyva (91.700) and Orozco (90.700).
Leyva began competition on the floor exercise with a 15.000, dismounting with a stuck double layout. The Miami-native earned scores of 14.600 and 14.750 on the pommel horse and still rings, respectively. Performing a Kasamatsu one-and-a-half, Leyva posted a 15.600 on the vault in rotation four. Moving to the parallel bars, where he is the reigning World champion, Leyva used four variations of the Peach underswing to score 15.900. In the final rotation, he earned a 15.850 on the high bar for his dynamic routine, which included a layout Kovacs release.
"Today went really, really well," Leyva said. "It was a good first day of competition, and the second day is going to be a lot of fun."
Orozco, the reigning U.S. all-around champion, was in the same rotation with Leyva. He began on the floor with a piked Arabian double mount and earned a 15.150 score. On the pommel horse, Orozco scored 14.350. In rotation three, Orozco posted a 15.200 on the still rings, executing an Azarian to L cross and one-and-a-half twisting double back dismount. He posted scores of 14.800 on vault, and 15.550 on parallel bars, sticking his double pike dismount. Orozco finished the competition on the high bar, performing a nearly flawless Liukin release move to score 15.650.
"It wasn't necessarily my best day," Orzoco said, "I want to come back stronger for Saturday's competition."
Mikulak's day began on the parallel bars where his dynamic routine, which includes a unique front one-and-a-quarter to swing through, earned him a 15.700. He was equally dynamic on the high bar with three big release moves and earned 15.550. Mounting with a tucked double-twisting, double back, Mikulak posted a 15.500 on the floor before moving to the pommel horse where he added a 14.600 to his all-around total. On the still rings, Mikulak swung smoothly through tucked and piked Yamawakis to score 14.550. Mikulak's Kasamatsu double was good for a 15.900 and completed his competition.
"I just wanted to keep calm and hit all my sets," Mikulak said after the competition. "I was pretty nervous coming into this – my first Olympic Trials – and I felt like I came out pretty well."
Jonathan Horton of Houston/Team Hilton HHonors (Cypress), was fourth in the three-day combined standings and posted an 89.650 total in the all-around today for a 271.350 overall. Horton earned his highest score of the day on the vault, where his handspring double front earned a 15.850. In addition, he posted scores of 15.450, rings; 15.650, parallel bars; 14.200, high bar; 15.100, floor exercise; and 13.400, pommel horse.
Jake Dalton of Reno, Nev./University of Oklahoma, rounds out the top five with a total score of 269.550. Dalton posted matching scores of 16.100 on the floor exercise, where he performed a stuck triple full dismount, and the vault, performing a Kasamatsu double full. Dalton also scored 15.000, still rings; 15.100, parallel bars; 14.900, high bar; and 13.350, pommel horse, giving him a 90.550 total in today's competition.
Event leaders after three days of competition are Dalton, floor and vault; Alexander Naddour of Gilbert, Ariz./Team Hilton HHonors (USA Youth Fitness), pommel horse; Horton, rings; Leyva, parallel bars and high bar.
Single-session tickets range in price from $36-$102, including facility fees. The prices vary according to seat location and session. Four multi-session and all-session ticket packages are still available. Multi-session packages, ranging in price from $78 to $236, include a 3-day weekend package; a two-day women's package; and a finals package featuring the final day of competition for both men and women.
All tickets may be purchased through ticketmaster.com, by phone at 800-745-3000, at all Ticketmaster outlets and the HP Pavilion Ticket Office. In recognition of Visa's long-time support, USA Gymnastics is proud to accept only Visa at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics, along with cash. For more information and details on the ticket packages, go to www.sanjose2012.com.

Television, webcast and YouTube coverage
NBC Sports Network, formerly Versus, will broadcast the first day of men's competition live on June 28 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. ET. Then, NBC will broadcast live coverage on television and at NBCOlympics.com of the remaining three days of competition: women's day one, June 29, 9-11 p.m. ET; men's final day, June 30, 4-6 p.m. ET; and women's final day, July 1, 9-11 p.m. ET.
Television coverage of the women's competitions on June 29 and July 1 will be tape delayed in the Pacific and Mountain time zones but available live nationwide online. For a complete schedule of NBC's coverage, click here.
USA Gymnastics will provide coverage of podium training prior to the event, as well as post-competition interviews and more on its official YouTube channel, http://www.youtube.com/usagymnaticsorg.
Ways to follow
  • Online. The 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics and its ancillary activities are easier than ever to follow online. Schedules and general information for both fan activities and the competition, including the official event program, start lists, live scoring and more are available at www.SanJose2012.com, which is easily viewable on smart phones and other digital devices.
  • Social Media. USA Gymnastics are connecting with fans on Facebook and Twitter, providing live updates and exclusive content including videos and photos from the Visa Championships. Gymnastics fans can follow the action easily on Twitter by using the official hashtag of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials - Gymnastics, #SanJose2012.
  • Fan Activities. From morning fitness at the Circle of the Palms to the Visa Fan Fest and the AT&T Block Party outside the HP Pavilion, fans will have plenty of opportunities for fun while they enjoy the exciting week of competition in San Jose. Click here for a complete schedule of fan activities.
Background information
  • HP Pavilion. HP Pavilion at San Jose, managed by Sharks Sports & Entertainment, hosts nearly 100 sporting events annually including more than 40 San Jose Sharks regular season home games and the SAP Open men's professional tennis tournament. The building hosts approximately 170 events every year -- including Olympic athletes, Grammy award-winners and a variety of family and children's favorites that account for more than 200 event days. Pollstar, the leading concert industry trade magazine, nominated HP Pavilion at San Jose as "Arena of the Year" for 2005 and 2007. In 2007, Pollstar also recognized HP Pavilion at San Jose based on non-sports attendance as fourth in North America, top 10 in the world. Over the past 10 years, HP Pavilion at San Jose has consistently been in the Top 5 in North America and top 10 in the world.
  • San Jose Sports Authority. The San Jose Sports Authority is a non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the City of San Jose's economic development, visibility and civic pride through sports. Serving as the City's sports commission since its inception in 1991, the Sports Authority has provided leadership and support to attract and host hundreds of sporting events in San Jose and the South Bay. The Sports Authority also supports and operates community, youth and amateur sports programs, including the San Jose Sports Hall of Fame, The First Tee of San Jose, and the REACH Youth Scholarship Program. To learn more, visit www.sjsa.org.
  • City of San Jose. From its founding in 1777 as California's first city, San Jose has been a leader, driven by its spirit of innovation. Today, San Jose stands as the largest city in Northern California and the Capital of Silicon Valley—the world's leading center of innovation. The city, the 10th largest in the United States, is committed to remaining a top-ranked place to do business, to work and to live. For more information, visit www.sanjoseca.gov.
  • San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau (SJCVB). The San Jose Convention & Visitors Bureau (SJCVB), a 25 year old organization focused on enhancing the image and economic well being of San Jose, is managed by Team San Jose, a unique customer service model that works in partnership with local hoteliers, organized labor, local arts leadership and business community to provide a one-team approach to all event-planning needs. Team San Jose manages the San Jose Convention Center and multiple theaters in Downtown San Jose, including the San Jose Civic, Parkside Hall, Center for the Performing Arts, California Theatre and Montgomery Theater. For more information, visit www.sanjose.org.
  • San Jose Hotels Inc. (SJHI). San Jose Hotels Inc., is a hotels-led, non-profit business improvement district representing 35 San Jose-based hotels. SJHI leverages destination investment focused on event sponsorship, marketing and public relations to attract conventions, events and meetings to San Jose through a unique partnership with Team San Jose and the SJCVB.

FOUR OF PORTLAND'S BEST CELTIC GROUPS COME TOGETHER FOR BENEFIT CONCERT

Portland, Maine - One Longfellow Square, 181 State Street, Portland, presents the first in a series of Benefit Concerts for OLS featuring the best of Portland’s Celtic talent: Don Roy Trio, Naia, Boghat and The Press Gang on Thursday, July 12 at 8 pm. This is an official satellite event hosted by Maine's popular Saltwater Celtic Festival at Thomas Point Beach in Brunswick, ME.

The artists have graciously donated their time to make this event a benefit for One Longfellow Square. Maine uillean piper Tom Wilsbach will MC the event.  In addition to the headliners, the evening will feature short sets from some of Portland’s other fine players,  highlighting the exceptional traditional Celtic music scene that has been growing in Portland for some time.

Don Roy is considered one of the foremost practitioners of the Franco-American fiddling style that is unique to Maine and New England, and has roots in several Celtic traditions. While growing up in Rockland, Roy was influenced by fiddlers such as Ben Guillemette, Joe and Gerry Robichaud, and Graham Townsend. The sounds of Quebec, Ireland, Ontario, and the Maritime Provinces blend in his style of playing. In 2003, Don and an apprentice won a Traditional Arts Apprenticeship grant from the Maine Arts Commission, receiving two traditional arts fellowships for excellence in traditional music. Ethnomusicologist Bau Graves calls Roy the finest Franco fiddler in New England, whose playing, "exactly exemplifies what Franco American fiddling is all about. It is simultaneously precisely controlled and wildly danceable."

Naia combines the talents of Celtic flutist Nicole Rabata, and harpist Danielle Langord. They play traditional Celtic music from Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and Quebec, along with their own traditionally inspired compositions. Rich harmonies blend with delicate melodies to create this duo's unique sound.

Boghat is a traditional Irish dance music trio with a contemporary twist. From fiery reels and jigs to plaintive airs and the occasional song, Boghat covers the wide spectrum of the Celtic genre. The players of Boghat are Tom Rota (uilleann pipes),  Jaime Eller (fiddle),  and Mike Jeanneau (bouzouki and guitar). Boghat will be featured this year at the Saltwater Celtic Festival’s Maine Local Scene Showcase.

The Press Gang fuses the talents of squeezebox player Christian “Junior” Stevens, fiddler Alden Robinson, and guitarist Owen Marshall. The trio blends their skill and fluency in traditional Irish music with their curiosity and aptitude for other styles. Their debut self-titled CD features a generous helping of Irish tunes spiced with Appalachian music and original compositions

All proceeds from the concert will benefit the programming and offerings at One Longfellow Square, a nonprofit arts and music venue located in the robust Portland Arts District. One Longfellow Square presents over 200 concerts a year of all genres as well as arts programming for youth. For further information email info@onelongfellowsquare.com or call (207) 761-1757.

Avon Foundation grant to CMMC‏

Lewiston, Maine - Carol Kurzig, left, president of the Avon Foundation for Women, presents a “big” check to Christine Hayden, breast health outreach patient navigator at the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. The $250,000 grant was part of nearly $3 million in grants that the Avon Foundation recently made to 10 New England organizations that serve the needs of breast cancer patients, either through research or direct services to patients. The grant to CMMC will provide continued support for the Dempsey Center breast health navigator and allow the purchase of a new dedicated breast ultrasound unit. “Our beneficiaries here in New England are leaders from your communities who are dedicated to the fight against breast cancer,” said Kurzig. “These organizations are providing breast cancer screening, care and support services every day. They are also researching the causes and improved treatments for breast cancer, but also a way to someday prevent it altogether. ” The grant to the Dempsey Center was one of four grants to New England hospitals in the Avon Safety Net program, allpart of a 70-hospital nationwide network created to ensure access to high quality breast cancer services to women and men who might otherwise fall through the cracks of the healthcare system. The Avon Foundation announced the grant during its recent Avon Walk for Breast Cancer in Boston. The walk raised $4.8 million.

Blue Hill Library Weekly Summer Book Sales

Blue Hill, Maine - Friends of Blue Hill Public Library book sales are going weekly for the summer, starting July 7th.  The sales will be open Saturdays during library hours, from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM through August 25th in the Library’s basement “Book Nook.”

Featured items in the upcoming sales include books on history, biography, art, “how-to,” cookbooks, gardening, health, classics and poetry.  And new donations are arriving all the time! The Book Nook is also stocked with many books for children. Any child attending a book sale this summer may select a free book from the youth shelves!

Book sale proceeds enable the Friends to sponsor many of the special programs offered at the library, for both children and adults, and to make special purchases of books, dvds, etc., and equipment for the library.  To donate books that are in good condition or for more information, contact the Library at 374-5515. Please leave the dust jackets (regardless of their condition) on any books you donate whenever possible!

Using the “Placebo Effect” Effectively

Blue Hill, Maine - Physician Kathryn Rensenbrink and acupuncturist Lorie Dechar will discuss the “placebo effect” from both Western and Eastern perspectives in a presentation at the Blue Hill Public Library on Thursday, July 12th at 7:00 PM.  They will discuss some of the most recent and thought-provoking research on the placebo effect and highlight examples drawn from their own clinical practices.  In addition, Kathryn and Lorie will offer practical suggestions that can help participants collaborate with their health care providers to make the most of this powerful tool.

Western doctors in clinical practice have historically viewed the placebo effect as a problem.  The belief has been that if patients respond favorably to a placebo - a sugar pill or other form of treatment that has no direct physiological effect - they are being tricked into better health.   However, Chinese medicine and other traditional healing systems seem to understand that a multitude of subtle factors such as context, relationship, and belief influence the healing process, and that sometimes it is the hand that administers the medicine as much as the chemistry of the medicine itself that is the cure.  Today, with new developments in brain scan technology and carefully crafted randomized trials, “West is beginning to meet East” as medical doctors and researchers have begun to reevaluate the power of the placebo in the clinical setting.

Kathryn Rensenbrink has practiced primary care internal medicine in Ellsworth at Maine Coast Memorial Hospital since 1996.  She grew up in Topsham, Maine and earned her BA from Brown University and MD from University of California San Francisco before completing her residency at Maine Medical Center in Portland. She cares for a wide range of adult patients with a particular interest in geriatrics and osteoporosis.

Lorie Dechar has practiced traditional Chinese medicine since 1985.  She is the author of Five Spirits: Alchemical Acupuncture for Psychological and Spiritual Healing and is on the faculty of the Tri-State College of Acupuncture in NYC.  Lorie has a private practice in East Blue Hill.  She received her BA from Bennington College and her Master’s of Acupuncture from the Traditional Acupuncture Institute in Maryland.

Teen Fright Night at the Library

Blue Hill, Maine - Kids and their families, or at least those who are brave enough, are invited to join Pat Horton for a scary movie on Friday the 13th of July for Fright Night! Pat will be showing Godzilla (1998 rated pg-13) at 7:00 PM on the Library’s “pretty big” screen.  Free popcorn will be served.

The 1998 version of Godzilla stars Matthew Broderick as the research scientist, Niko Tatopolous, who is called in to investigate the matter of an unknown creature spotted at the Panama Canal. He quickly realizes that a giant, irradiated lizard has been created by explosions created by French atomic bomb-testing in the Pacific. Godzilla then makes its way north, landing at Manhattan to begin wreaking havoc in New York, and the combined forces of the U.S. Military are called in to battle the creature.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information call Pat at 374-5515.

Antique Furniture Identification, Connoisseurship, and Care

Blue Hill, Maine - Blue Hill Public Library will host a talk and slideshow on antique furniture by Joshua Klein of Klein Furniture Restoration in Brooklin on Saturday July 14th at 10:30 AM. The program will focus on identifying style, authenticity, finishes, woods and other aspects of understanding antique furniture. Klein will cover the criteria for valuing furniture, and about when and why appraisals are needed. Finally, he will also cover storage, care, and damage treatments.  Attendees are welcome to bring small pieces for evaluation, time permitting.

Joshua has studied the construction and repair of stringed instruments at the School of Luthiery located in Red Wing, MN, and has built both acoustic and electric guitars. He also attended the National Institute of Wood Finishing, in Rosemount, MN where he studied under Mitch Kohanek, a master wood finisher who has set the standard for so many in the field. At the Institute, he developed the skills to assess wood damage, finish repair and touch up, color matching, refinishing, and antique conservation.

More information about Joshua and his work can be found at http://mainerefinishing.com. The program is free and open to the public.  For more information contact the Library at 374-5515.

CMMC Nursing instructor honored‏

Lewiston, Maine - Meredith Kendall of Lewiston, a Central Maine Medical Center College of Nursing and Health Professions (CMMC CONHP) instructor, was recently named the 2012 recipient of the Saint Joseph's College Alumni Association’s Alumni of the Year Award.

Alumni of the Year Awards are presented to one traditional and one distance education graduate of Saint Joseph's College who has distinguished herself or himself professionally or in service to the community. The Alumni of theYear are people who represent the core values of Saint Joseph's College andstrive to make the world a better place. Kendall was the distance educationrecipient for this year. She was a distance student while working full-time as a medical-surgical nurse.

A 2005 magna cum laude graduate of Saint Joseph's College, Kendall holds a master’s degree in nursing education. She is a nursing instructor at the CMMC CONHP, where she lectures and teaches clinicals. Last year she helped create a tutoring center for the college.

She is the author of two books about reiki: “Reiki Nurse: My life as a nurse and how Reiki changed it” and “Reiki Stories: My hot hands”. They are used as textbooks in college reiki classes and are available in print and as e-books.

Kendall volunteered over 100 hours last year, including work at ThePierce House, an assisted living facility where she teaches yoga, maintains the website, is a member of the Board of Trustees, and serves on the Policy andAdmissions Committee.

She volunteers at the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing, where she shares reiki with people with cancer and their caregivers. She helped develop the reiki program there, and manages a team of reiki practitioners. She teaches reiki classes, and holds monthly reiki shares for practitioners. During the Dempsey Challenge, she spends the weekend at the event site with massage therapists, reiki practitioners, athletes, and cancer survivors. She is a member of the Challenge Local Organizing Committee.

Kendall is conducting research on reiki at the Dempsey Center, and is planning to publish the results. She is also a member of the CMMC Institutional Review Board, working to protect the rights of human research subjects.

She also manages a blood pressure clinic at an elderly apartment complex.