Moose lottery application process now open

 

Dreaming of the hunt of a lifetime? The 2018 Maine moose permit lottery application process is now open.

 Applications for the 2018 Maine moose permit lottery will be accepted online only.

The online application process is fast and simple and you receive instant confirmation that you have successfully entered the lottery. 

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Tourney contenders Downeast

by Phil Stuart

This year, as usual, several Downeast area high school teams are well qualified for the the postseason. But how many will actually set foot on the Cross Insurance Center floor and win a game or two? That will depend on how well they play the rest of the season and whether they can survive a preliminary round. 

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Washington Academy Raiders in action photos

Pictured are the Washington Academy Raiders. Members include front left-right: Kyle Case, Micah Vose, Jim Lin, Ryan Easton, Nathan Lund, Nevin Rhodes, and Jeffrey Graham. Back left-right: Donald Soctomah, Brandon Allard, Joe Bragg, Marek Veal, Daniel Agyemang, Tihomir Babic, Milan Filipovich, and Coach Barry Terrill.

 

Team Captains Kyle Case and Jim Lin are pictured with Coach Terrill.

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Take the February #ReadtoME Challenge

The Maine Department of Education is sponsoring the #ReadtoME challenge for the month of February to raise awareness of the importance of early childhood literacy.

 Reading aloud to children not only provides a bonding experience with caring adults, but the simple act of reading aloud to a child 15 minutes a day for five years results in 27,375 minutes of language exposure which can put children on the path to high literacy achievement. 

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Balloons, drones, and rockets in Milbridge

Kidz radioActive, a group based out of Milbridge, is planning a “Sky’s The Limit” project for the Downeast region to be held this summer. The group’s president, Phil Duggan, said that the project is intended to pique kids’ interest in science and technology and to get them outside and having fun.

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Jonesport-Beals schools take STEM to elementary kids

by Steve Colhoun

   With the growth of knowledge, there are always changes to education, in both content and methods. Yet because of the rapid advances in technology in recent years, the teaching profession has struggled to adapt, as we witness ongoing teacher shortages along with the evolution of STEM curricula. The importance of science, technology, engineering and math  in school is unquestionable, but how to apply class time, and at what age, is still developing.

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Community Calendar

Upcoming events

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Joseph W. Ellsmore Machias

Joseph W. Ellsmore, 83, passed away unexpectedly in Zephyrhills Florida on February 5, 2018 after cardiac surgery.  He was born in Machias on February 14, 1934 to Herbert and Beatrice Ellsmore. 

He lived and worked in Machias and in his retirement years he enjoyed spending the cold winter months in Zephyrhills.  

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Doris Mae Ingalls - Bucks Harbor

Doris Mae Ingalls, 98 , went to be with her Lord and Savior on February 4, 2018 at a Machias hospital. She was born March 9, 1919 the daughter of the late Guy and Alta (Colbeth) Clark. She worked at the sardine factory in Machiasport for many years, as well as the clam shop in Bucks Harbor. She was a faithful member of the Bucks Harbor Baptist Church. She enjoyed sewing, knitting, and crocheting, and volunteering time at the Sunrise Workshop.  She was a wonderful mother, and grandmother, and loved being a wife to her husband of 70 years Kenneth.

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Whitneyville Library news

The Friends of the Whitneyville Public Library would like to thank those that came out on Saturday, Feb. 10 for our Cabin Fever Craft Fair. Even though the weather was not the best, some of the library’s faithful came out to enjoy lunch and see the many crafters that were on hand. Due to the weather that day, the craft fair will be held again on Saturday, Feb. 24 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hillgrove Community Center in Whitneyville. So if you missed the craft fair on the 10th come and join us on the 24th.

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Raiders improve to 11-5

by Phil Stuart

With recent victories over the Orono Red Riots and Calais Blue Devils, the Washington Academy Raider boys are currently 11-5 with road games remaining at Old Town and John Bapst. 

On Jan. 25 Barry Terrell’s Raiders hosted the Orono Red Riots at Gardner Gym in East Machias which resulted in a great fourth quarter Raider comeback to pull out a win.

Orono held a 14-10 first quarter lead and a 34-27 half-time.

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Royal Boys sweep Tigers

by Phil Stuart

The Jonesport-Beals boys upped their regular season record to 12-2 with victories over the Shead Tiger’s on Jan. 25 in Eastport and Jan. 29 in Jonesport. On Jan. 25 the Royals and Shead switched home dates and played their first matchup of the season in the port city. This was a rough and physical foul plagued contest throughout but the Royals were able to survive. 

The contest was relatively close the majority of the game but the superior depth of the Royals prevailed which resulted in a 66-56 win over Skip Alley’s club. 

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Scouts pack the Sheriff’s Office

The Tigers and Lions from Pack 125 were given a tour of the Washington County Jail and the Machias Courthouse as part of their program to earn belt loops. The tour was guided by Sheriff Barry Curtis and Captain Rich Rolfe. The boys had lots of questions about what it takes to become a Police Officer; how do they arrest people, how they get them to jail and many others. The boys were accompanied the local Cub master and several parents. At the end of the tour the boys were given challenge coins from Sheriff Barry Curtis. 

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The longest paddle

by V. Paul Reynolds

The Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT) winds from Old Forge, New York to Fort Kent, Maine. Established in 2000, it is the longest mapped inland paddling route in the country: 740 miles.

How would you like to paddle that? No thanks. The NFCT is the canoeist’s version of the Appalachian Trail,  another intimidating outdoor challenge that has never been on my bucket list, even though I enjoy hiking and paddling in small doses.

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Campground reservations opening for Maine State Parks

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s Bureau of Parks and Lands announced that campground reservations for the 2018 season will open for Sebago State Park on Feb. 1 and for all state parks on Feb. 5. 

The Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands reservations system and call center will be open for Sebago Lake State Park campground reservations only on Thursday, Feb. 1 at 9 a.m. and for all state park campgrounds at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 5.

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Three ways to cut hearing aid costs

Dear Savvy Senior,

I’ve heard that hearing aids will soon be available over-the-counter and will be much cheaper than they currently are. What can you tell me about this? My husband desperately needs hearing aids but we simply can’t afford them. 

                   Searching Spouse

Dear Searching,

Unfortunately, for many years the high cost of hearing aids has kept millions of Americans with hearing loss from getting hearing aids because they can’t afford them. 

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Washington County Gem and Mineral Society invites area rockhounds to join

 

by Lura Jackson

If you have ever found yourself scouring the ground for interesting rocks, then a newly-formed group may suit your fancy. The Washington County Gem and Minerals Society is looking for anyone with an interest in rockhounding or sharing specimens in group settings. The group held its first meeting at Washington County Community College at the end of January, and it will be meeting again on February 17th at the Cobscook Community Learning Center.

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Narraguagus Jr/Sr High School Second Quarter Honor Roll

Grade 12: High Honors: Elizabeth Chartrand, Brittney Church, Emma Denbow, Sophia DeSchiffart, Mary Hammond. Honors:  Angel Alley, Shalynne Barbee Bamford, Tiah Bickford, Joshua Brooks, Taylor Colbeth, Sasha Crowley, River Fenton, Madison Leighton, Kegin Schoppee, Emily Williams. Grade 11: High Honors: Gabriel Blomgren, Kajsa Brown Morrison, Breanna Smith.

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Paper Orchestra offered for preschoolers

The Paper Orchestra program, led by Alice St. Clair, director of Eastport Strings, will be the Eastport Arts Center’s KinderArts offering for February. The hands-on program is designed to engage younger children in the magic of music making, and will introduce stringed instruments and include singing, movement and crafting with the help of caregivers. The creativity based curriculum will help children begin to find their musical voice while starting the process of being instrument-ready.

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Machias Memorial High School news

The power of positivity and the power of PAWSitivity are the foundation for People Acting Wicked Super (P.A.W.S.), MMHS’s rewarding and fun system of ‘catching students doing something right’.  Staff give students a PAWSitivity PAW when they show acts of respect, responsibility and rapport.  Examples of behaviors that can earn a PAW include: showing acts of unity, kindness, inclusion and acceptance; being polite and considerate; volunteering;  being a positive team/club member; and helping others. When a large number of PAWS are earned, everyone gets to enjoy a PAWSitivity Pizza Party!

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Machias Memorial High School news

The power of positivity and the power of PAWSitivity are the foundation for People Acting Wicked Super (P.A.W.S.), MMHS’s rewarding and fun system of ‘catching students doing something right’.  Staff give students a PAWSitivity PAW when they show acts of respect, responsibility and rapport.  Examples of behaviors that can earn a PAW include: showing acts of unity, kindness, inclusion and acceptance; being polite and considerate; volunteering;  being a positive team/club member; and helping others. When a large number of PAWS are earned, everyone gets to enjoy a PAWSitivity Pizza Party!

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Cherryfield and Milbridge news

On its third year anniversary, open mic in the small village of Cherryfield is a hit. It takes place in an ancient old building called the Community Center, which was once an old high school that has since  been fixed up. Musicians from all over perform on the second Thursday of the month from 6-8 p.m. Corrie Hunkler talked about that one day she drove past it in Cherryfield and got the idea. 

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Wesley News

Kim Carlow was in Bangor Hospital on Jan. 31 and had surgery in a week. She hopes to be home in a weeks. Hope she’s up and about soon.

There are eagles hanging around the snowmobile trail on Route 9 in Wesley, close to the cemetery. 

Four tractor trailers were off the road on Route 9 on Friday, Feb. 2. The fire department was called out to Maine River to supply flashing lights to slow traffic down.Crawford and Beddington were another couple of places where trucks had trouble.

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Harrington News

A happy birthday to Ronie Strout!  She is always busy.  I hope she had a great day.

Tim and Dea attended a dance and dinner in Bangor this weekend.  Tim stopped in to say hello and show me some videos of the dance. They looked very handsome and beautiful.

Kristine and Tyler were here to visit today.  It was lovely to see them.

Cortney Hammond brought over a wonderful meal of deer meat and vegetables.  It was delicious.  Thank you Courtney.

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New Lubec school and community organization seeks members

Lubec Elementary School announces the formation of the Parent Teacher Community Collaboration (PTCC), a new group focused on bringing engaging programs and fun events to the children of the community.

“We wanted to create something a little different than the traditional PTA (Parent Teacher Association),” said teacher Anna Street, “something that taps into the phenomenal pool of life experience in our community, while focusing on doing things for the children’s enrichment.”

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Sawyer family to Jonesport: “Yes” to sale of campground

by Nancy Beal

The recently promised letter from the John Sawyer family responding to the Jonesport selectmen’s query about buying the campground and/or obtaining a release of the family’s right of first refusal on the sale of the marina arrived last week and was shared and discussed at their February 7 meeting.

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Basketball tournament to benefit Arise Addiction Recovery

Come on out to watch or play and join the fight against addiction in our community. Arise Addiction Recovery is hosting a three-on-three basketball tournament to support its services in the Machias.

This will be a 20-team double elimination tournament, ages high school and up. There is an entry fee for each team, and spectator admission is by donation. $300 prize for the winning team!

Two courts will be playing at once, basic tournament rules apply. Because it’s double elimination, there will be 38 total matches that will last nine minutes each.

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Porter Memorial Library news

 

For gardeners in winter

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Jonesport responds to county’s push for more deputies

by Nancy Beal

Following two meetings hosted by the county commissioners last month on the increase in crime in Washington County because of the drug trade, county manager Betsy Fitzgerald wrote all 46 towns in the county with information about what the commissioners wanted to do in response, and to ask towns for their reaction. Jonesport’s letter was discussed at the selectmen’s February 7 meeting.

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DOC proposes Machias jail closure

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

Though the words prison and jail are often used interchangeably, in the case of local facilities they refer to two different places. The Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) in Machiasport is a state prison used for long-term incarceration, and the Washington County Jail in Machias is run by the county and used for shorter-term incarceration. 

This week they have something more than geography in common—the state wants to close them both.

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Lawmakers, commissioners, move to contain damage after surprise prison closure

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

Only the legislature can formally close a state prison, but Governor LePage effectively closed Machiasport’s Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) when he ordered the removal of its 63 prisoners on Friday, Feb. 5, and issued pink slips to its remaining 38 employees.

Now, state representatives and county commissioners are exploring what can be done to minimize the damage. 

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Rural roads big losers in upcoming rehab

by Ruth Leubecker

Although transportation dollars will be awarded once spring arrives, Maine’s rural roads will not be the big recipients of such funding. “They’re already starting to advertise,” said Maria Fuentes last week of the start of the process. 

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So long regular season, hello tourney time!

Coach Jim Getchell’s Machias Bulldogs said goodbye to regular season play and will be competing in a preliminary game with hopes of heading to Bangor. This year Getchell became the winningest coach in Bulldog history with a total of 123 wins during his 20-year tenure. For all the local basketball news, enjoy our 2018 basketball insert included in this edition. Photo by Sarah Craighead Dedmon.

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Guest Voice - The Common Sense Coalition and the future of the senate

by Sen. Angus King

Sometimes, when a football team has a prolonged losing streak, it creates a cycle that’s hard to break. The good folks of New England haven’t recently experienced this challenge, but unfortunately, the United States Senate is currently dealing with exactly that problem.

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Letter to the Editor - Statement from senate republican leaders on governor’s closing of DCF

 The people of Washington County deserve better than this. Maine senate republicans are currently looking at all available options.

 The Maine legislature’s commitment to keeping this facility open has been consistent. In addition to fighting for funding in the budget, legislators in 2016 reached agreement on a government facilities bond that mandated a correctional facility exist in Washington County. This action appears contrary to the agreement that was reached.

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Editor's Desk

Since governor LePage removed the inmates from the Machiasport prison last week, I’ve had occasion to speak with countless people working the situation. I’m thoroughly impressed by the care and concern shown for the employees most impacted by the prison’s closure. 

There are so many people here working toward creating economic wellness here in Washington County, and I’m afraid one part of that team suffered a terrible blow last week. My heartfelt sympathies go out to the 38 people who woke up Friday morning expecting to spend the day at work.

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Columbia News

Condolences go out to April and Daniel Atwater of Unionville who lost their home and all of their processions to a fire on Feb. 3. There will be a Benefit Supper & Chinese Auction for them on Sunday, March 18, from 1-4 p.m. at the Ella Lewis Elementary in Steuben. This will be a pot luck meal for anyone that would like to add to the table to help these folks.  Contact Melissa Wright at 263-4387 or on Facebook. The Atwaters are staying at the Lamb House in Cherryfield for the time being.

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AARP warns of online Valentine’s Day scams

It’s Valentine’s Day, and time to watch out for the “Sweetheart Scam” targeting people on dating websites.  Be careful about what information you reveal on social networks. On dating sites, take extra care.  If someone asks for money – particularly money that must be wired or provided by a credit card – it is probably a scam.  Beware what you share.  This Valentine’s Day, we want Cupid’s arrow to strike your heart, not your wallet.  

Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam.  

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Letter to the Editor - Reply to Jon Reismann’s letter to the editor

 In his letter to the MVNO published Feb. 7, Jon Reismann tries to draw a distinction between people taking a knee at the Portland Jetport with people greeting the troops at the Bangor Airport.  In Professor Reismann’s mind, somehow these two events are polar opposites and mutually exclusive.  

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Letter to the Editor - An open letter regarding hunting along the Middle River

 

To the Machias Board of Selectmen and the Downeast Coastal Conservancy,

Where habitats intersect within our town boundary, should we begin a dialogue of designating these areas between town and the Middle River park and its trails as non-hunting areas?  Even at 15 feet, the width of the main trail is too close to hunting when considering safety. Our area houses children, people with animals walking the trail, motorized vehicles, propane tanks and the list goes on. Safety is the word.

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Trees need space

Whether in the forests, in our yards, or on our streets, all trees need their space. Pruning and thinning trees in our forests really help trees grow and be more productive in producing seeds and food for birds and other wildlife. Orchards and other trees in our yards also need space and pruning. February is the proper time to prune fruit trees to be more productive and produce quality fruit. Street trees in our communities, especially in our cities, benefit from having protective guards to keep people and pets from trampling and compacting soils near trees.

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Downeast Homeschool Co-Op Valentine’s Day love

The Downeast Christian Homeschool Co-Op meets weekly on Fridays in Machiasport. Students age eight and up put together candy bar bouquets at last week’s gathering. “We plan to drop them off at doctor’s offices, the emergency room and the like to thank people who give to our community,” said Dawn Wright, one of the co-op’s teachers. “We’d like to show them love back on this Valentine’s Day as a thank you for all they do!” Photo courtesy Dawn Wright

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EMBRACing a changing demographic one step at a time

Somewhere around 2005, when John Baldacci was governor, this reporter announced the horrifying, off-the-charts per-pupil cost in Machias as a little over $8,500.

Now that number doesn’t look so horrifying, all things being relative. That figure’s been left in the dust as deficits and dollars skyrocket to keep pace with the times. All schools, factoring in everything from special needs to transportation, have undoubtedly at least doubled that amount. And recently Deer Isle-Stonington drove the point home when they announced a per-pupil cost of $24,000 to taxpayers.

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Letter to the Editor - Pardon the deep state

The country is in for a rough ride over the actions of senior Obama administration officials and leadership in the Department of Justice and the FBI. The resultant damage to the deep state would be well deserved, but President Trump can take one step to limit the damage and protect American institutions which might be needed to Make America Great Again: Pardon President Obama, Attorney General Lynch, President Clinton, Secretary Clinton, Susan Rice, Samantha Powers, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Bruce Ohr, Sally Yates and Rod Rosenstein.  We need to Move on. Amnesty for all!

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Homeschoolers in the house

Members of the Downeast Christian Homeschool Co-Op visited the offices of the Calais Advertiser and visited with Jessica Griffin, the whiz behind layout on the Machias Valley News Observer. 

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PRSWDD releases scale weight figures, sets 2018 budget

by Nancy Beal

Totals from the six towns that make up the Pleasant River Solid Waste Disposal District indicating how much trash their townsmen deposited on scales at the Columbia Falls Route 1 facility were shared by Jonesport Selectman Harry Fish with his colleagues at their weekly meeting last week. Scales at PRSWDD include a large truck scale and a small scale in the office for trash brought in that is not in the designated bags sold at PRWSDD and from town offices.

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Clams on ice

Despite ice and cold, a handful of clammers brave the elements on the flats of Beals Island daily. Photo by Nancy Beal

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Sad gnome

Despite gnome’s enthusiastic display of team spirit at Helen’s Restaurant in Machias, the New England Patriots could not defeat the Philadelphia Eagles in the Super Bowl held Sunday, Feb. 4.  Photo by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

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Editor's Desk - commercials aired during last Sunday’s Super Bowl

In one of the more amusing commercials aired during last Sunday’s Super Bowl a priest, a rabbi, an imam and a buddhist monk get into a truck to go to a football game. The spot is part of a series of commercials based on the old jokes, and takes aim at religious intolerance through humor. Toyota calls the series “One Team.”

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Trump immigration policy protest in Portland

Portland Jetport: Taking a knee for identity politics Bangor International Airport: Troop greeters. Can’t make the difference between the 1st and 2nd congressional districts and Chellie Pingree vs. Bruce Poliquin any clearer.

Jon Reismann

Machias

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Porter Memorial Library news

 

If you’re a gardener, then chances are you’re already dreaming your way through seed catalogs. You’ll be happy to know that Gordie the Groundhog is back at Porter Memorial Library to pull you closer to spring with our annual Fedco seed sale fundraiser. Stop in anytime before March 1 to collect your order forms. Help a Maine seed seller, your local library and your garden all in one fell swoop!

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Four chaplains to be remembered at Balsam Valley Chapel

Wreaths Across America will host a special service of remembrance in honor of the four chaplains who gave their lives to save others when the U.S.A.T Dorchester sunk on the night of Feb. 3, 1943. The ship was struck by a submarine’s torpedo. 

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Struggle intensifies for closing prison

by Ruth Leubecker

An uphill battle to keep the doors open at the Downeast Correctional Facility has only intensified following a hearing with all factions weighing in.

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Groups drug recovery centers to accept MaineCare

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

For many addicts, the cost of treatment is yet one more barrier to sobriety.  Beginning March 21, the Groups outpatient drug recovery centers located in Machias and Calais will be able to accept MaineCare, removing that barrier for many. 

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Dry dock

Waiting out winter in Alleys Bay, Beals Island. Photo by Nancy Beal

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Businesses learn how to bring cyclist dollars Downeast

 

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

Cyclists are unlike any other kind of tourist, and not only because they’re come in on two wheels. They spend 20 percent more per day than the average tourist, they’re out for adventure, and they want to absorb the local culture just as it is. “They’re very low impact,” said Kim Roos of the Maine Bicycle Coalition. “They want to become part of the community for the time that they’re here.” 

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Machias switches transfer station contract, accepts riverfront bid

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

When the town’s contract with the Penobscot Energy Recovery Company (PERC) expires at the end of March, Machias plans to switch transfer station services to a company based in New Brunswick. 

Machias town manager Christina Therrien said that she visited the company’s facility last month. “It is cheaper and it is closer,” said Therrien. “I believe we’re going to save in transportation, and we’re going to save in disposal costs.”

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Machias Bulldogs defending state champs

The Machias Memorial High School varsity boys basketball team hopes to advance to the preliminary playoffs after their final home game in Machias on Tuesday, Feb. 5. Pick up our next issue dated Feb. 14 for our annual local basketball insert for all the local pre-playoffs basketball news. Front row from left to right: Jordan Grant, Noah Albert, Alex Wentzell, Dallas Moody, Reece Alley, Alex Marotta, Mark Merserean. Back row from left to right: Coach Jimmy Getchell, Jacob Holland, Evan Dray, Russell Hanscom, Alex Look, Tyler Wentzell, Josh Archer, Carl Bragg, Dustin Getchell.

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Kenneth J. Leighton Maynard, - Massachusetts

Kenneth J. Leighton, age 76, of Maynard, Massachusetts, passed away peacefully Sunday, January 28, 2018 surrounded by his loving family.  He was the husband of fifty-four years to Carol M. (Nelson) Leighton.  

 Born in Boston, Massachusetts on September 23, 1941, he was the son of the late John W. Jr. and Gunvor (Borgeson) Leighton.  Ken graduated from Newton High School, class of 1959.  He proudly served in the United States Air Force from 1959-1963.  

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How to find volunteer opportunities in retirement

Dear Savvy Senior,

What resources can you recommend for locating interesting volunteer opportunities? Since I retired, I’ve been doing some volunteer work but most of the opportunities I’ve tried haven’t been very satisfying.

Unsatisfied Volunteer

Dear Volunteer,

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Columbia News

 January flew right by, where does the time go? It seems like I did not get a thing done that I wanted to do. I guess with the cold temperatures outside I did not feel like doing anything major. I did get some genealogy done and then I caught the crud and was down for the count for four days. I missed two days of work because of it. Hopefully I won’t get this again this year.

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DW Merritt 2nd quarter honor roll

Mrs. Greene, principal of Daniel W. Merritt school in Addison is pleased to announce the second quarter honor roll.

Grade 3:  All As: Autumn Schrader, Carson Bickford. All Bs: Paul Rainville.

Grade 4: All As: Naomi Eyerman. All As and Bs: Lucus Grant, Bayleigh Thompson, Sarah Kidder, Micah Look, Lukas Pounder, Nickson Rusecky, Chase Wright. All B’s: Logyn Dempsey,Mercy Machado.

Grade 5: All As: Karli Alley,Emma Whitmore. All As and Bs: Emily Emerson, Brayden Kane, Briana Willson, Dylan Lovejoy. All Bs: Kendall Coffin, Jennifer Kowalsky.

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L. Vance Davis - Cutler

L. Vance Davis passed away in Jonesport on January 13, 2018 with his family at his side.  He was born in Cutler, Maine on March 30, 1939, the son of Roy and Attie Dudley Davis.  

Vance, also known as Lem, loved his hometown of Cutler.  Born at home on a large peninsula of land which later became the Cutler Naval Base, he was the youngest of seven siblings.  He enjoyed duck hunting with his favorite dog, Bounce, and deer hunting with “the boys”.

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We must act to save girls from horrific child abuse

by Gov. Paul LePage

There’s a horrific type of child abuse happening right here in Maine, and we must stop it. It is graphic and disturbing.

No child should ever be subjected to violence, especially when it leaves them permanently disfigured and interferes with normal bodily functions.

But young girls in Maine are being forced to undergo a procedure called “female genital mutilation,” and hundreds more are at risk.

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Healthy Acadia raises $5K for cancer

Healthy Acadia’s second annual “Hungry for Health” 2017 campaign has come to a close, and the nonprofit community health organization would like to thank the eleven restaurants across Hancock and Washington counties who partnered to raise awareness and funds for cancer prevention and treatment access. 

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Committee shows overwhelming support for prison

by  Rep. Will Tuell

I am happy to report that the Criminal Justice committee overwhelmingly passed our bill to keep Downeast Correctional Facility open. I believe the vote was 11-1-1, but the two 1’s were for slightly different versions of the bill. All three versions make it clear that the legislature wants to keep DCF open, sees a value in the facility, and doesn’t have any other option but to keep it open for at least one more year.

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Time to get age-friendly is overdue in Washington County

Although Maine outnumbers every other state with its number of age-friendly communities that officially claim this status, only one in Washington County fits the bill—Eastport.

Towns like Raymond and Jackman, Old Orchard Beach and Stonington number among Maine’s 45 towns and cities, but here we lag behind. Sharon Mack, MBACC director, says there aren’t even any applications to be considered.

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Harrington News

Winter seems to not want to give up snowing.  We feel we have had enough snow.  It snows, then the sun comes out, and then it rains. It cannot make up its mind.

Today was a beautiful day to go to Ellsworth. The sun was shining and it was warm!

Happy belated birthday to Mark Strout! I hope he had enough air to blow out all those candles.

Kathy Caler has decided to close up her travel agency. She said most people set up their trips on their own. At least she tried.

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Winter carnival scheduled for UMM

On Saturday, Feb. 10, the University of Maine at Machias will hold a campus-wide winter carnival for people of all ages. Events include: a snowball fight, snowshoe and cross-country skiing lessons, carriage rides, snow painting, igloo building, a paint ‘n sip, and indoor mini golf. The day will also include a free showing of Thor Rangarok at 2 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center. Activities will take place at various locations on campus, and a schedule and map will be provided to attendees. All events are free of charge. For more information, visit: machias.edu/news. 

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Honorees

Washington Academy played its last home boys’ basketball game of the season on Monday, Jan. 29 and honored Dick Gardner and his wife Margaret Gardner during halftime.

Dick Gardner recently retired from the Washington Academy Board of Trustees after 55 years of service to the school first as a student and athlete, then as a coach, athletic director, parent, WA board member, WA board president, and friend of the school.The pair were presented with a banner which now hangs in the Gardner gymnasium and commemorates his service. Photo courtesy Hannah Sprague

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Machias Memorial High School news

The art program has been very busy creating exciting and colorful artwork!  Miss Lee supports students in imaginative and unique opportunities to express themselves through art.

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Rose M. Gaffney Elementary School honor roll

Grade 4, high honors: Kiley Bauman, Cassidy Conlin,  Annabel Lentz, Arden Luuring, Irish Manning, Hanna Megno and Kellan Schwinn. Honors: William Bishko, Webster Case, Cali Cole, Alizay Cox, Lauren Davis, Presley Day,  Dominick Farley,  Nicholas Hennessey, Emerson Johnson, Avery Libby, Jolan Look, and Lucy Lord, Skyla Moody and Victor Mubang Jr.

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Bay Ridge Elementary second quarter honor roll

Grade 5 High Honors: Avery Cates, Ethan Cates, Max Cates, Paige Cates, Reese Crosman, Michael Taylor. Honors: Kisuhs Stevens-Dinsmore,Hayden Reynolds.

Grade 6 High Honors: Anna Patterson. Honors: Ben Griffin, Drew Taylor.

Grade 7 High Honors:  Isabel Cates, Lucas Cates, Abby Fitzhenry, Sarah Moulton, Sarah Neal. Honors: Kate Taylor, Jackson Lemieux, Marissa Cates, Shane Feeney.

Grade 8 Honors: Cami Bryant, Kash Feeney, Raeanah Reynolds.

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Elm Street Elementary School first trimester honor roll

Grade 3 honors: Hunter Roberts. High honors: Darion Wescott. 

Grade 4 honors, Daniel Gardner, Lily Hennessey, Jayden Gardner, Gertrude Gregory, Cameron Matthews, Pierce Thatcher. High honors: Samuel Davidson, Jayden Mahar. 

Grade 5 honors: Cloe Gibson, Finlay Ramsdell, Rachel Keeton, Alaina Berry, Autumn Balyint, Brayden Barker, Grace Dennison. High honors: Iris Johnson, Myla Bartko, Jonah Dean Abigail Maker, Lola Smith. 

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Harrington Elementary School second quarter honor roll

Harrington Elementary School Principal Mrs. Meserve is pleased to announce the second quarter honor roll Grade 3: High honors: Erica Rackliff. Honors: Victoria Bickford, Zoey Blomgren, Caden Burgess, Elmer Dolqueist, Kyle Dorr, Emma Dowling, Makenzi Farren, Ryder Fenton, Miranda Flores, Hannah Grant, Kaitlyn Grant, Eli Grover, Marshall McDonald, Colin Phinney, Keyontae Pinkham, Noah West, Alex Worcester.

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Winter sports and fun at Perry’s Pottle Tree Farm

Having fun and helping others by cross-country skiing through woodland trails, sledding, ice skating, snow shoeing, a ski race, ice fishing, a scavenger hunt, ski lessons and a potluck by the bonfire are all part of the sixteenth annual Winter Sports and Fun Day held Saturday, Feb. 10 in Perry. 

In addition to fun, the event provides funds for Stronghearts, a Perry-based foundation.  Stronghearts was established in 2002 by Brian and Sue Duffy in memory of their son Seamus who died of a congenital heart defect, Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome.  

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WA 2nd quarter honor roll

Judson L. McBrine, Head of School at Washington Academy in East Machias, has announced the second-quarter honor roll for the 2017/2018 year as follows:

Grade 9: High Honors (All A’s):  Evan Ackley, Marissa Ackley, Steven Albee, Chloe Alley, Rachel Allison,

Isaac Atkinson, Kylie Atkinson, Paige Bell, Rhiannon Bennett, Sophie Bragg, Mackenzie Cates, Naomi Curtis,  Jinny Davis, Abel Dean, Inez Furth, Jacob Gove, Ethan Graham, Emma Griffin, Natcha Griffin, Taber Helton, Natalia Kempthorne-Curiel, Nicholas Luuring, Chloe Lyford, Gabrielle Morang, Alexandria Morgan, 

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DMR regulations questioned after scallop fishermen pulled from water

 

by Lura Jackson

On Tuesday, Jan. 30, the high winds and precipitation were not enough to deter a group of five scallop fishermen from heading out to attempt to meet their quota. After spending the morning plying the rough waters of Cobscook Bay, the dragger returned back with its catch. The five fishermen – four men and one woman – moored their vessel in Deep Cove and proceeded to row inland in a 14-foot skiff. The small skiff wasn’t able to withstand the waves and it overturned, sending all five people into the 39-degree water. 

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Grass roots fish management

by V. Paul Reynolds

Managing Maine’s incredible sport fishery—and its associated  regulations—is complex and always subject to second guessing by arm-chair fisheries “biologists,” who may sincerely believe that they know how better to manage the fish in their favorite angling waters.

Dennis Smith of Otter Creek is one of those impassioned anglers who never tires of trying to impose his preferences upon the fisheries management decisions made by the professional state fisheries biologists.

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Raiders finish 13-5

by Phil Stuart

The Washington Academy (WA) Raiders boys completed their 2017-18 regular season on Feb. 1 with a 69-53 victory over the John Bapst Crusaders of Bangor. The win gave Barry Terrell’s club a season’s sweep over the Crusaders, and a 13-5 regular season mark which currently has them seeded seventh in the standings.  

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Clippers weekend split

by Phil Stuart

The University of Maine at Machias (UMM) Clippers men’s and women’s teams hosted two Yankee small colleges on the weekend of Jan. 27-28 at the Reynolds Center. On Saturday, Jan. 27, the Vermont Technical Institute of Randolph Center, Vermont came to town. The Lady Clippers took the court first against the visiting Knights. 

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Lady Raiders in action photos

Lady Raider Madelyn Willey takes the ball down the sideline.

Strong baseline drive by Lady Raider Sydney Verge.

Katie Leighton Brings the ball down over midcourt against Woodland.

 

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Library’s ‘To the Top’ $10,000 match met

In September 2017, H.D. Moore Library and Community Center patrons and supporters Edward Atkinson and Brenda Koskinen offered a $10,000 challenge match to benefit the Moore for the Future Endowment Fund. 

Library officials are pleased to report the required $10,000 in donations have been received and matched, adding $20,000 to the endowment fund goal of $250,000. 

Now, at $235,000, the endowment fund goal is within reach. The library hopes to meet it by this summer and honor the many donors with a celebration.

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Wesley News

Erin Guptill, kids and family went to New Hampshire Jan. 26-28 for a fun weekend at Fun Spot and Ice Castles. They had good weather and great fun at huge ice houses. Twelve of my family are going to the same place on the first weekend in February, going to meet up with other friends and even if it snows we will have fun with all the big kids. Plus, its Layne’s birthday. 

Lots of oversized loads  were traveling on Route 9 on Monday, Jan. 29. They included four large house pieces and four concrete bridge sections.

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Whitneyville Library news

Local crafters will be on display at the Cabin Fever Craft Fair on Saturday, Feb. 10 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Hillgrove Community Building in Whitneyville.  Snow date for the event is Saturday, Feb. 17.  Homemade chocolates by the friends of the Whitneyville Public Library will be for sale along with handmade soaps and lotions, sewn and knitted items and jewelry are some the crafts that will be for sale by many local crafters.  Feeling a little cabin fever and would like to get out and enjoy the day? Then come to our Cabin Fever Craft Fair.

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Community Calendar

Upcoming events

• • • • • •

The Henry D. Moore Library and Community Center in Steuben will show “Beauty and the Beat” 6 p.m.  Friday, February 9.  Admission is free and yummy refreshments are sold by donation. For more information, visit www.moorelibrary.org

• • • • • •

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Local mystery author launches ‘Death by Chocolate’ series with familiar characters

by  Lura Jackson

Local mystery fans will be glad to know that they can continue to get their fix of Eastport-based crime solving featuring the characters of Sarah Graves’s “Home Repair is Homicide” series – albeit with a few new twists – in “Death by Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake”, the first book in a bakery-centered series. The book, released on Jan. 30, is available for purchase at S.L. Wadsworth and Son in Eastport and at the Calais Bookshop, as well as online.  

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Dear Cat Lady

Dear Cat Lady, 

I just moved in with my daughter. Her cat is eight years old and my cat is five. Having a problem with them getting along. Can you give any advice?

I appreciate your help,

Lorraine

Dear Lorraine,

Hopefully this will be an easy transition for all. Most importantly, don’t expect instant friends. Keep the cats separate and start making introductions by scent. You can switch sleeping blankets, beds or toys that smell like the other for a few weeks so that they become accustomed to the other’s scent. 

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Variety show to raise funds for historical society

 

Imagine a wide variety of acts competing for rehearsal time on the stage. Who will get to use the piano, the bright lights, and even the sound system at the busy Eastport Arts Center?

That’s the puzzle to be unraveled at a benefit show ‘Rehearsal Gone Wrong!’ 6:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 9 at the EAC on Washington St. Donations accepted at the door.

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UMM students create documentary film exploring immigration issues

Ten University of Maine at Machias (UMM) students have taken their studies outside the classroom in a project exploring what it means to be an American. The result of their work is a documentary film, “Who Made You in America,” premiering Feb. 18 on campus.

The free public screening at 2 p.m. at the UMM Performing Arts Center will be followed by a panel discussion led by professor Alan Kryszak and featuring several students involved in the making of the film. 

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Mardi Gras Pancake Supper

Let the good times roll at the annual Mardi Gras Pancake Supper, on Tuesday, Feb. 13, at the Kay Parker Building, 26 Hadley Lake Road in Machias, from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $6 for adults and $3 for children. This event is held every year to celebrate Shrove Tuesday, the day before the beginning of Lent and is hosted by St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church and Sunrise Opportunities, with all proceeds going to the Special Olympics program. 

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Washington Academy wrestlers

Tanner Rolfe starts his match in Calais.

Raider Isaac DeMott working for an escape.

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LePage criticized for closing prison under cover of darkness

On Monday, Feb. 5 the Maine State Legislature’s Criminal Justice Committee voted 11-1-1 to keep the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) open, and on Friday, Feb. 9 Governor LePage closed it.

In Friday’s pre-dawn hours, prison employees were turned away from the facility and told their positions were terminated effective March 3. State police accompanied vehicles brought to remove the prisoners.

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Jonesport budget ready for town meeting March 12

by Nancy Beal

The Jonesport budget committee gathered in the town office Wednesday, Jan. 24 and set the figures for voters’ approval at their upcoming town meeting on March 12. The grand total is $702,607, but could be $40,000 less if voters forego granting a rebate to those who pay their taxes early. The $40,000 is the amount that would need to be raised to cover such rebates, which have been voted down in recent years. If the pattern holds, the budget’s bottom line would only be $662,607, an increase of $18,619 over last year’s total of $643,988.

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Editor's Desk

Michael Wight of the Maine Department of Transportation has confirmed that he is scheduling another public hearing concerning the Machias dike. The hearing will be held in late February or early March, and will likely be held at UMM to accomodate a large audience. The hearing will address possibilities for replacing the dike with a structure that could prevent or limit flooding in part of Machias’ 100-year floodplain. You’ll find the details in this paper when they’re available.

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Letter to the Editor - We are not a democracy

In regard to the article about the NYC Mayor, please understand that these 50 United States do NOT form a Democracy. 

Article IV, Section 4, Clause 4 of our Constitution says: 

“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a REPUBLICAN Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened), against domestic Violence.”

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Letter to the Editor - downward spiral our government

What needs to be done to break this downward spiral our government is in? We now have a president and his administration saying he did not make a certain statement, and a Senator saying he did. I thought I left this kind of behavior behind when I left grade school. These are the men we elected to represent us. We are not getting what we bargained for. Could someone please tell me why we tolerate this type of behavior? We don’t allow our children to act in this manner. We certainly don’t tolerate it in our workforce. Just when I think it cannot get any worse, it does.

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Letter to the Editor - One happy camper in Cutler

Dear Editor,

Another cold day in Washington County with plenty of sunshine, and another banner issue of the Machias Valley News Observer; it makes living downeast even more pleasurable. Whenever Ruth Leubecker hones her journalistic craft on the salvage rights concerning McCurdy’s Brining Shed, or Valdine Atwood brings history alive with the events and activities of the Machias Dike, it reconfirms us that history and good journalism are alive and kicking.

One happy camper in Cutler,

Bob Kord

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