(Old Town) – Maine’s woods are bone dry, temperatures will soar into the 80-s today, and the wind will gust at times. That combination has prompted a red flag warning from the National Weather Service and forest rangers are battling a couple of large wildfires. The biggest is at May Mountain near Island Falls in Aroostook County. By last night the blaze was only 30-percent contained and had scorched about 215-acres. Another fire off the Golden Road near Baxter State park has burned about 40-acres. Town fire wardens will not be issuing any burn permits for the weekend.
Lamoiner’s 100th Birthday
(Lamoine) – Lamoine residents plan a big fire truck and car parade this evening as the Hancock County town’s oldest resident marks her 100th birthday. June Davis’s relatives and neighbors had hoped to have a more personal party event, but the Coronavirus pandemic has limited the opportunity to wish the town’s only centenarian a happy hundredth to a drive by event. The fire department will lead off the parade at 5:30, leaving from the town’s school.
(Jonesport) A search team has recovered a body in Jonesport. The Washington County Sheriff’s Department organized a search for 43-year-old William Merchant of Addison. The remains were found off Route 187 near Wilders Way yesterday. Sheriff Barry Curtis tells Star 97-7 that Merchant has been missing since last summer. The state medical examiner’s office is working to confirm the identity.
(Augusta) Eleven-hundred-45 Maine residents have recovered from coronavirus since the outbreak began. The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports there are one-thousand-678 past and present cases statewide. 460 of those cases are currently active and another 199 are pending. The virus has claimed 73 Maine lives as the Maine CDC reports no new deaths since Tuesday.
(Augusta) Maine’s primary election will be held July 14th after Governor Janet Mills last month signed an executive order to delay it. Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap says is advocating for absentee voting. Dunlap says ballots are sent to Maine’s town and city clerks 30-days prior to the election. Governor Mills’ executive order last month also allows applications for absentee ballots to be made in writing or in person, without specifying a reason, up to and including the day of the election.
(Hermon) A Hermon man who used to coach high school football is charged in connection with a shooting last Friday in Bangor. Police were called to the intersection of York and Essex Streets to the report of gunshots exchanged between two vehicles. Bangor police located the cars and processed them for evidence. WABI-TV reports 32-year-old Julius Williams was arrested Wednesday night for Reckless Conduct and Attempted Elevated Aggravated Assault. He’s since been released on $1,000 cash bail; the investigation continues.
Pat’s Pizza/Forgotten Felines
(Ellsworth) It’s a beautiful weekend to get out and about, do some good, and share a pizza! Star 97.7 will be broadcasting live from Pat’s Pizza on High Street from 10 until 1 on Saturday. We’ll be collecting donations for Pat’s signature charity, Forgotten Felines of Maine. Forgotten Felines was started in 2009 to raise awareness of the plight of free-roaming cats by promoting and expanding humane methods for the care of these cats. They assist with TNR, food, shelter and spay neuter services. So come on by, drop off some change, spare cat food or toys, meet and greet (from a socially acceptable distance) the Star 97.7 staff, and pick up a delicious Pat’s Pizza to go!
HVFD Memorial Day
(Hancock) Like many other events, the annual Memorial Day parade in Hancock is canceled due to the coronavirus. But the Hancock Volunteer Fire Department isn’t letting that stop them from honoring veterans. Fire Chief Chris Holmes posts online that fire trucks will be parked on the 3 corners of the Monument lot from 10 to 11 AM on Monday with lights flashing and flags flying from their trucks, but there will be no sirens. With social distancing in place, folks are encouraged to come sit, stand or drive by and honk. Lamoine Selectmen plan a stay in your car ceremony at the town’s Veterans Memorial next to the town office. They will also honor two girl scouts who’ve maintained the memorial for years as the Citizens of the Year.
(Augusta) As we near Memorial Day weekend and the unofficial start of the summer recreational boating season, the Maine Marine Patrol provides some reminders for a safe, enjoyable experience on Maine’s coastal waters. All children 10 and under must wear a life jacket. Adults don’t have to wear them, but they must be available for every occupant on board. Boaters should also have working navigation lights, visual distress signals, sound signaling devices, VHF radio, proper ventilation, and properly displayed registration numbers. And a thorough check of fire extinguishers and flares should be done to make sure they work.
Library Curbside Pickup
(Ellsworth) The Ellsworth Public Library will launch curbside pickup service on June 1st. For the safety of library patrons and staff, the building will not be open to the public until Stage 3 of Maine’s reopening plan slated for July. During the first week in June, anyone who has items that were requested prior to the closure of the library will get first priority for curbside pickup service. Others may call the library or place requests through the online catalog. Curbside pickup service will be by appointment Monday through Saturday.
(Augusta) — Maine’s governor overruled the opinion of an assistant attorney general in calling for an end to unemployment payments to prisoners, a practice she described as “appalling.” Maine inmates whose work-release jobs were suspended because of the pandemic were paid nearly $200,000 in unemployment benefits before Gov. Janet Mills put the kibosh on the practice. The Maine Department of Corrections also said it doesn’t intend to expand coronavirus testing beyond the Maine Correctional Center in Windham, where a prisoner fell ill. Maine officials reported 58 new cases of the virus statewide on Thursday. The total is now 1,877.
- The National Federation of High School sports has laid out strict guidelines for fall sports seasons. The Maine Principals Association says it will try to follow the suggested practices.
- The National Hockey League is talking about resuming its season with a 24-team playoff format
- The NFL is talking about a new option for teams to keep the ball after a score and run a 4th down and 15 from its own 25 yard line instead of an onside kick. Teams could do that twice per game.