Crews Battle Winter Harbor Wildfire
(Winter Harbor) Despite a bit of rain in places over the weekend, conditions remain extremely dry and conducive to wildfires across the state. On Saturday, Maine Forest Rangers assisted Winter Harbor and Gouldsboro firefighters in battling a wildfire in Winter Harbor. Crews employed a helicopter to help douse the flames, and smoke could be seen for miles. Wildfire danger remained high all weekend except in Zone 3 in the County, where danger was considered moderate.
(Winter Harbor) Wildfire danger remains high across the state. On Saturday, Maine Forest Rangers deployed a helicopter and worked with Winter Harbor and Gouldsboro firefighters to contain a large wildfire in Winter Harbor. Maine Forest Rangers posted photos on their FB page showing a large plume of smoke extending across the region.
Pressure Cooker Causes Evacuation of Thomaston WalMart
(Thomaston) A mystery solved after a suspicious item found last week at the Thomaston WalMart caused the evacuation of the store and resulted in a tactical team being called in. The Pen Bay Pilot reports law enforcement was called on May 7th after a pressure cooker was found sitting on a wastebasket at the entrance to the store. Pressure cookers have been known to be used as devastating weapons, as in the case of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Turns out an older gentleman had dumped a bag of his trash containing the pot in the store’s trash. Along came a trash picker, who waded through the wastebasket and left the pressure cooker sitting on top of the can. Authorities ultimately determined it was harmless, were able to identify the older gentleman and educate him that WalMart didn’t provide disposal or recycling of such items.
(Thomaston) Tense moments earlier this month at the WalMart in Thomaston. Store employees called authorities after finding a pressure cooker sitting atop a trash can outside the store’s entrance. Such objects have been used as deadly weapons, as in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. The Pen Bay Pilot reports the store was evacuated and a tactical team called in. It was ultimately determined the device was harmless. Turns out, an older gentleman had brought a bag of his trash containing the pot to the store and stuffed it into the wastebasket. Along came a trash picker, who after sorting through, left the pressure cooker sitting atop the garbage can. Police were able to identify the older gentleman and educate him that WalMart didn’t provide disposal or recycling of metal items.
Land in Western Maine Now Protected
(Quill Hill) A large section of land in Western Maine is now permanently protected. Two key properties totaling 13,500 acres in the Western Maine mountains will be open for public use, with a majority of the land continuing to be managed with timber harvests. Quill Hill and Perham Stream are part of the traditional territory and ongoing cultural significance to the Wabanaki people.
(Quill Hill) Nestled in the mountains of Western Maine, Quill Hill and Perham Stream are vitally important to the region’s economy, outdoor recreation, forest products industry, and wildlife habitat. Now, these lands, totalling 13,500 acres, are permanently protected. The lands are of cultural significance to the Wabanaki, will be open for public use, and will continue to be managed with timber harvests. The lands are also key for enhancing carbon storage and ensuring species can adapt to climate change.
Maine Towns Make Lists of Must-See Destinations
(Bar Harbor) U.S. News and World Report has named Bar Harbor tops on the list of best small towns to visit in the United States in 2023 and 2024. The magazine cites the town’s proximity to Acadia National Park, charming accommodations, and opportunities for outdoor fun. The only other Maine town to make the list was Kennebunkport at number 21. The magazine says the famous Bush family retreat is more than just a getaway for the rich and famous, with a beautiful coastal landscape, boat tours, sunset views, and lessons in how to catch lobsters.
(Bar Harbor) America’s most coveted destination may be right here in our backyard. At least according to U.S. News and World Report, which named Bar Harbor top on the list of best small towns to visit in the United States in 2023 and 2024. With its proximity to Acadia National Park, charming accommodations, and recreational opportunities such as kayaking, hiking, and boat tours, the magazine called Bar Harbor a must see destination. The only other Maine town to make the list was Kennebunkport, summer getaway of the Bush family, which came in at number 21.
Maine Arbor Week Tree Planting
(Ellsworth) More trees, please! Celebrate Maine Arbor Week with a Community Tree Nursery Planting on May 20th. The Ellsworth Garden Club, Frenchman Bay Conservancy, and Green Ellsworth invite you to the Jordan Homestead Preserve this Saturday to help plant 80 new trees that will one day renew and enhance Ellsworth’s lush tree canopy. Wear sturdy shoes and bring shovels if you have them – tree planting begins at 10 a.m. with a rain date of May 21st.
(Ellsworth) Help Ellsworth restore its once beautiful tree canopy! As part of Maine Arbor Week, Green Ellsworth and others will celebrate this Saturday, May 20th by planting 80 additional trees at the Jordan Homestead Preserve. Work begins at 10 a.m. Wear sturdy shoes, and bring a shovel if you have one. The project is also sponsored by The Ellsworth Garden Club and Frenchman Bay Conservancy. Rain date is May 21st.
Bowdoin College Plans to End Reliance on Fossil Fuels
(Brunswick) One of the country’s oldest institutions of higher learning plans to invest one hundred million dollars in renovations, in part to end its reliance on fossil fuels by 2042. The Bangor Daily News reports Bowdoin College will use the monies to update some older buildings and install a new electrified heating system. According to one source, about 400 U.S. colleges and universities have pledged to be net zero by 2050.
(Brunswick) A Maine institution of higher learning hopes to raise its environmental standards. The Bangor Daily News reports Bowdoin College in Brunswick is investing $100M in renovations in order to end its reliance on fossil fuels by 2042. Bowdoin is one of the oldest colleges in the U.S., so old buildings will be updated and a new electrified heating system installed. Climate scientists say getting to net zero emissions is the most important goal in addressing climate change.
Invasive Fish Sparks Concern in Maine’s Lakes
(Maine) The number of salmon in the Belgrade Lakes has dropped dramatically over the past 40 years, and experts say the reason is affecting lakes across the state. The Bangor Daily News reports the illegal introduction of invasive species such as pike is transforming Maine’s lakes and ponds. Such species can eliminate other fish species and take over bodies of water, as has happened on Long Pond in Belgrade and Mount Vernon, where a once thriving salmon population has all but been eliminated.
(Maine) It only takes one person dumping a few pike or other invasive species into a body of water to change a fishery forever. The Bangor Daily News reports such changes have happened in the Belgrade Lakes region and are threatening lakes and ponds across the state. State officials say there’s little they can do to prevent the illegal stocking of pike, black bass, and other invasive species that pose a statewide threat to the state being a popular destination for anglers from around the world.
MRC Moves Forward With Innovative Resource Recovery
(Hampden) The Municipal Review Committee reports it is moving forward with its planned partnership with Innovative Resource Recovery. They say representatives of Innovative have made several site visits and are focused on facility upgrades, employment and restarting the plant that left 115 communities hanging when it abruptly closed in May 2020.
The MRC reports it’s doing everything necessary to make that partnership come to fruition in the coming weeks.
(Hampden) The Municipal Review Committee reports efforts to reopen the shuttered Hampden trash facility that left 115 Maine communities in the lurch when it abruptly shut down in May 2020 are progressing quickly. A potential partner, Innovative Resource Recovery, has reportedly made multiple visits to the site and is focused on facility upgrades, employment and restarting the plant.
NE Harbor Road Work
(NE Harbor) A heads up for NE Harbor residents. Beginning today (Monday), RF Jordan will be digging a trench and installing a conduit across Sea Street as part of the NEH fire station project. Traffic may notice road closures in the area where the small parking lot is adjacent to the meeting room west of the building and may take one or two weeks and an additional road closure.
(NE Harbor) Northeast Harbor residents should be prepared for road work on Sea Street. Beginning today (Monday), workers will be digging a trench and installing a conduit as part of the NEH fire station project. They say expect traffic to be disrupted for one to two weeks. RF Jordan will be using some of the Gray Cow parking lot to store materials and equipment.
Maine Bureau of Highway Safety Hosts Listening Session in Ellsworth
(Ellsworth) The Maine Bureau of Highway Safety is hosting a listening session to gather public input to help shape the development of the 2024 Maine Highway Safety Plan. MBHS specifically wants to know what concerns folks have surrounding traffic safety in their communities, what areas of traffic safety are working well, and what barriers residents face in traveling safely from point A to point B. The listening session will be held Thursday, May 25th, from 4:30 to 6 at the Ellsworth Public Library.
(Ellsworth) The Maine Bureau of Highway Safety is hosting a listening session to gather public input to help shape the development of the 2024 Maine Highway Safety Plan. Specifically, they want to hear your thoughts on effective methods for Maine to enhance highway safety awareness initiatives, how MBHS should respond to the increase in roadway deaths, and what concerns residents have on any Highway Safety related issues. The listening session is scheduled for Thursday, May 25th, from 4:30 to 6 at the Ellsworth Public Library.
Maine Seacoast Mission Announces EdGE Tennis Tournament
(NE Harbor) Maine Seacoast Mission is welcoming teams and individual players to compete in the 19th EdGE Tennis Tournament at the NE Harbor Tennis Club. The September 9th tourney benefits the Mission’s signature education program. For more information or to register, visit seacoast mission dot org.
(NE Harbor) Tennis for a cause – Maine Seacoast Mission is accepting registrations for its annual EdGE Tennis Tournament, set for September 9th this year at the NE Harbor Tennis Club. Men’s and Women’s doubles play at advanced and intermediate levels, with eight-player teams competing throughout the day. Proceeds benefit the Mission’s signature education program. For more information or to register, visit seacoast mission dot org.
Loaves and Fishes Seeks Volunteers
(Ellsworth) Can you spare a few hours a week to make a huge difference in the lives of those facing food insecurity? Loaves and Fishes Ellsworth is in need of volunteers for food checkout, picking up and delivering food to those without transportation, and multiple other areas. Whether you can give a couple of hours or a couple of days a week, Loaves and Fishes will find a place for you. Stop by during open hours, or fill out a volunteer form at loaves and fishes ellsworth dot org.
(Ellsworth) The new Loaves and Fishes food pantry in Ellsworth is serving more people who find themselves facing food insecurity every week. But it takes the hands of many volunteers to make sure no one in Hancock County goes hungry. Whether you can give two hours or two days a week, Loaves and Fishes will find a place for you. You can help picking up food from grocers, assisting at check in or with checking out people who use the pantry – they’ll find a place for you, and you’ll find it the most rewarding part of your week. Fill out a volunteer form at loaves and fishes ellsworth dot org.
The Red Sox are home tonight against the Seattle Mariners.
The Celtics took Round 2, Game 7 of the NBA Playoffs yesterday with a 112-88 win over the 76ers to end with a 4-3 game victory. Celtics begin Round 3 against the Heat in Boston on Wednesday.