1. East Machias Town Meeting reports lowered net budget

    by Ruth Leubecker

    Not prime time for an annual town meeting, but at 9 am on Saturday, townspeople and officials gathered to decide on the school budget, the town budget and 42 warrant articles.

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  2. Eastport readies for Fourth of July celebration

    by Jayna Smith

    Organizers of Eastport’s Fourth of July celebration have been hard at work for weeks, planning and scheduling events, with considerations made due to the COVID-19 pandemic and guidelines set at the state level.  

    This year, the easternmost city will kick off the weekend with a family-friendly street dance happening Friday, July 2 at Overlook Park beginning at 7:30 p.m., with Saturday, July 3 and Sunday, July 4 full of events throughout the days.  

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  3. J-BHS, Beals Elementary budgets approved

    by Nancy Beal

    The budgets for two of the three schools in the Moosabec area were approved last week by small bodies of voters who challenged none of the figures put before them. A total of $1,709,874 was authorized for Jonesport-Beals High School June 15, down a bit from last year’s $1,777,973. The state’s contribution to that amount was presented as $388,554, a bit over $35,000 less than last year. Taxpayers will be expected to pay $546,227 (last year it was about $21,000 less).

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  4. Ban on single-use plastic bags takes effect July 1

    by Jayna Smith

    Starting on July 1, Walmart customers will no longer cart their groceries and other goods out of the store using those familiar gray plastic Walmart bags. July 1 is when the ban on single-use plastic bags takes effect in Maine.

    Customers will need to bring their own reusable bag or container when shopping at Walmart. The chain will have reusable bags for sale at the registers and throughout the store starting at a price of 50¢.

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  5. Coming to Washington County

    by Jonathan Reisman

     

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  6. Fourth of July events are back with a bang in Lubec

    by Jayna Smith

    A fun-filled weekend is planned in Lubec to celebrate Independence Day, starting Thursday, July 1st with a barbecue dinner at 5 p.m., hosted by the Masons.  

    Beginning Friday, July 2 and throughout the weekend, take a drive around Lubec to see homes all over town decorated for the holiday as each homeowner vies for cash prizes in the fun decorating contest.  

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  7. Tall ships set sail in the Penobscot River July 9-18

    The Penobscot Maritime Heritage Association is celebrating Maine’s 200th birthday with a big splash. Tall ships and schooners will ply the waters of the mighty Penobscot River for the first time in 40 years! Historic seafaring vessels will visit various ports in the lower Penobscot River basin from July 9-18, 2021. They will be honoring Maine’s rich maritime past in the waterfront towns that anchor the geographic area known as the 4-Port Loop. This year, the anchors are Bangor, Bucksport, Orrington, and Searsport. The 4-Port Loop celebration is proudly presented by Bangor Savings Bank.

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  8. Driftwood art washes up next for workshop series

    Eastport Arts Center’s Summer Workshop Series continues Tuesday, July 13, with Driftwood Art. Geared for ages 12 and up, the found object sculpture workshop will be taught by artist Michael Morse from 1:30-3:30 pm. Morse will give attendees tips and ideas for beach combing, proper cleaning and other techniques for working with driftwood. Using some of the beach gleanings provided, or their own finds, participants will make small seaside assemblages of their own design.

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  9. The Nature of Phenology: Bracken fern

    by Hazel Stark

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  10. Flash flood event rips out area roads, devastates Duck Cove

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    On any normal day, a stream runs behind Danny Bunker’s property in Roque Bluffs, something he describes as a “trickle.” But in the early morning hours of Wednesday, June 9, that trickle became something else altogether.

    “That stream was 100 feet wide,” said Bunker. “It was like a river.”

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  11. MBACC still struggling as COVID clobbers fundraising

    by Ruth Leubecker

    Sharon Mack, who had been the face of the Machias Bay Area Chamber of Commerce for years, now exemplifies the face of the nonprofit itself.
    “I’ve been furloughed since a year ago last March,” she says. “And this is our second summer without a fundraiser. Our membership never kept us afloat. We needed those fundraisers.”

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  12. School budget decisions face Moosabeckers

    by Nancy Beal

    Union 103 in Beals and Jonesport is comprised of three schools—two elementary schools and a combined high school—each of which has a separate school board and separate budget. This is the time of year that those budgets are presented to the public for approval. The Beals Elementary School and Jonesport-Beals High School budget votes were held earlier this week (see next week’s MVNO for details), and the Jonesport Elementary School budget will face voters at 6 p.m., Wednesday, June 23 in the school’s all-purpose room.

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  13. Wallet found during renovation reveals clues to 1880s Calais

    by Jayna Smith

    Anyone who has renovated one of the many old homes in Calais knows that task can sometimes unearth some sort of token from years past. Such was the case last week for Charles Lewis and his wife Ginger when Charles opened a wall at their Main Street home.

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  14. The dangers of brown tail moth caterpillars

    by Natalie Boomer

    Brown tail moth caterpillars have been spotted in Washington County throughout the past few weeks.

    Although these small creatures may look harmless, they can actually cause severe reactions.

    If you see a brown caterpillar with a broken white stripe on each side and two red/orange spots on the tail end, steer clear.

    They have tiny poisonous hairs that can cause a skin rash that is similar to poison ivy. They can also cause breathing issues and other respiratory problems.

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  15. Generosity means more fresh food for families

    In May 2021, Downeast Community Partners (DCP) received word that the Good Shepherd Food Bank (GSFB) awarded DCP’s Nutritional Services $15,800 for capacity building. Heather Barton-Lindloff, Nutritional Services, manager says, “The funding of this project means that we can improve and expand existing services, in turn this means promoting a healthier community.”

    As families’ needs increased during COVID-19, DCP expanded food related programs; however, those changes were met with limitations.

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  16. Augusta supports Critical Race Theory (CRT) indoctrination

    by Jonathan Reisman

     

    Shocker: Dems support it, GOP (mostly) opposes

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  17. Machias Wild Blueberry Festival organizers plan for 2022 event: ‘bigger and better than ever’

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    Following the cancelation of the Machias Wild Blueberry Festival for the second year in a row, many have feared the iconic harvest festival might never return. But never fear, says festival director Ellen Farnsworth. The Machias Wild Blueberry Festival will be back in 2022, and better than before.

    “I’m getting contacted three and four times per week from new vendors that want to be a part of the 2022 festival,” said Farnsworth. “So that’s exciting, we’ll probably see lots of new faces next year.”

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  18. The Nature of Phenology: Labrador tea blossoms

    by Joseph Horn

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  19. Jonesport cat catcher builds her wards a home

    by Nancy Beal

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  20. Unanimous Judiciary vote pushes disputed DA bill forward

    by Ruth Leubecker

    Better access to justice in Washington County, says Rep. Will Tuell, means Downeast Mane needs two district attorneys.

    A years-long debate has hinged on the issue that Washington and Hancock counties, having long shared a DA, now each need their own. “I’m thrilled with the support,” says Tuell, sponsor of LD 272, An Act to Establish Separate Prosecutorial Districts in Downeast Maine. “We  could elect our own district attorney in November 2022.”

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  21. Santa’s Helpers Program receives donation from Red Knights Charity Ride

    by Jayna Smith

    Downtown Calais rumbled loudly on Saturday morning when the Red Knights Maine Chapter 5 motorcycle club hosted a ride in memory of Blaine McLaughlin.  

    The ride saw around 50 bikes and nearly ten other vehicles that took off from Papa’s Auto on Main Street in Calais.  The group made its way down Route 9, across the Cooper Road to 191.  From there, they proceeded to Pembroke via 214 and back along Route 1 to Papa’s Auto.

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  22. Peabody Memorial Library art auction, book sale, fish tasting

    by Nancy Beal

    Jonesport’s Peabody Memorial Library is full of artwork these days, all part of a silent bidding auction from now through July 17. The subjects range from the traditional boat and shore scenes that this seaside area traditionally inspires through illustrated mottoes to a couple of abstracts. They are the product of Laura Fish’s art students at Beals Elementary School, professional painters who live in the area, and six posthumous panels done in decoupage.

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  23. Green Energy Policy Meets TANSTAAFL

    by Jonathan Reisman

     

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  24. Workshop series, youth arts camp announced

    EAC is thrilled to announce our Summer Workshop Series, to be offered June 29 through August 17 at the center, in accordance with CDC guidelines for safe gatherings. In addition to the center’s usual Tuesday afternoon offerings, there will be a special Sunday afternoon workshop in late July, and a four-day Summer Arts Camp for youth.

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  25. Maine Community Foundation donates $10,000 to Incredible Edible Milbridge

    Women for Healthy Rural Living (WHRL) has been awarded a $10,000 grant from the Maine Community Foundation for their Incredible Edible Milbridge project.

    “Support from the Maine Community Foundation translates to expanded food production for the 2021 growing season.  This means we can feed more of our neighbors,” said WHRL executive director Christine Kuhni. “The gardens have become a point of pride for local residents, providing food, educational experiences, and a sense of community.”

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  26. Joe Piscadlo selected as 2021 Norman W. Duzen Community Service Award recipient

    The Washington County Extension Association will hold its annual meeting virtually, featuring the Norman W. Duzen Community Service Award, on Tuesday, June 22, beginning at 6 p.m.  

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  27. The Nature of Phenology: Buttercups

    by Hazel Stark

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  28. Jane Ellen (Magner) Kamm

    Jane Ellen (Magner) Kamm
    August 23rd, 1940 - May 20th, 2021

     

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  29. Beals moratorium puts halt to windmills

    by Nancy Beal

    In a special town meeting preceded by a public meeting May 25, Beals voters adopted a six-month moratorium on the erection of windmills, during which time town officials will draft a windmill ordinance to present to the town for approval. Another measure called for an outright ban on windmills on the two linked islands that house the town’s living quarters—Great Wass and Beals Island (the latter of which some in the audience were surprised to see identified on the meeting warrant as “Little Wass”).

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  30. After embattled years, she’s reaching out to give back

    by Ruth Leubecker

    As substance abuse dominates the front pages, infecting a growing number of troubled lives, it is noteworthy to hear about a success story. Jamie Corbett of Marshfield is a practitioner from all angles. Her youthful substance abuse became a traumatic battle to survive. Hers is a story of hope and positive accomplishment, worth telling as a beacon for others to exemplify. After setbacks and relapses, she did more than just survive; she became a drug counselor and impassioned champion of others waging the same war.

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  31. School sports facing numbers crunch

    by Phil Stuart

    It is not too far-fetched to think in the very near future that high school baseball and softball might become extinct in some area schools. For some reason, fewer students are involved in athletics today. Spring sports occur at a time when many students are anxious to get out of school, and if they play at this time of year, in their minds it might prolong the school year and shorten their summer vacation.

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  32. Vaccination record refused at Canadian border

    by Jayna Smith

    The border with Canada has been closed since March of 2020 for all but essential travel.  Falling under the category of essential includes media, an important means for citizens to obtain information about safety and welfare, as well as other critical information.  

    For one local businessman, Pierre Little, owner of The Calais Advertiser and Machias Valley News Observer, the regular cross into St. Stephen from Calais was not allowed, despite proper credentials and a U.S. CDC-issued vaccination card.  

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  33. Jonesport news: working waterfront, comprehensive plan

    by Nancy Beal

    Jonesporters hoping to turn part of the town campground on Henry Point into a commercial fishing hub got some good news last week: the grant givers they hope will help finance the project agreed to an extension of the application deadline. The current marina is owned by the state and is designated a recreational facility. Town fathers and fishermen fear that they could lose the use they currently make of it.

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  34. Notes on the current crisis

    Democratic Senators and Sanders, King and Collins vote to confirm Lying Anti-Semite racist to Top Department of Justice Civil Rights Job

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  35. EAC video profiles artist Cynthia Morse

    The latest in EAC Video’s Studio Visit series is Cynthia Morse, pastel painter, who recalls her earliest artworks, the exploration of many art forms in her 20s, and her eventual choice of pastels as a primary media. (Cynthia is still a media experimenter, and spent some of the pandemic time dyeing roving and creating large felted pieces!).

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  36. National Book Award-Winning Novelist’s Life Story Unveiled

    On Tuesday, June 15, at 6 p.m., the Camden Public Library will host Maine author Robin Clifford Wood for an online book talk and narrated slideshow about her new book The Field House: A Writer's Life Lost and Found on an Island in Maine. The book is a compelling blend of biography and memoir recounting the remarkable life of writer Rachel Field. The story is told by the woman who lived in Field’s old island home in Maine, sparking a unique sisterhood across time. Email [email protected] to request a Zoom link to attend.

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  37. Silent auction to benefit Healthy Acadia’s Downeast Gleaning Initiative

    Healthy Acadia is hosting an online, “Healthy Food For All” silent auction throughout the month of June to raise funds to support the Downeast Gleaning Initiative. Up for bid are an array of enticing local experiences, including a private, four-course dinner for eight people prepared by Sassafrass Catering, an overnight stay in Lubec, fresh Maine lobster, a Bar Harbor getaway package, and a lakeside sauna and dinner at Kendall Farm Cottage on Boyden Lake.

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  38. The Nature of Phenology: Alder leaf beetles

    by Joseph Horn

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  39. Milbridge issues early invite for others to join their parade

    by Ruth Leubecker

    Although there may be no blueberry festival this season and no lobster festival, Milbridge Days promises a big shebang, with an exciting theme, plus The Codfather.

    The annual multi-faceted celebration, held this year from July 27-31, hopes to attract many parade participants beyond Milbridge.

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  40. DC Interlude

    My wife and I traveled to Washington, D.C. for a Wuflu delayed family reunion with our sons and their plus-ones. What follows are my notes and observations after five days of following my promise to my wife to say nothing in response to the pro-BLM, pro Critical Race Theory, anti-capitalist, anti-Constitutional millennial ravings of our progeny and the possible mothers (excuse me, birthing persons) of our grandchildren, should we be so blessed.

    Bangor

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  41. PRSWDD and other waste groups grapple with Hampden plant ownership change

    by Nancy Beal

    The Pleasant River Solid Waste Disposal District (PRSWDD) is a small entity with a big name and a recent history of many problems, some solved, some pending. Those worries have ranged from non-functioning truck scales and an unstable wall that denies the plant insurance to the withdrawal of two of its six member towns and the in-progress retreat of a third. (Of the original six, Addison, Jonesboro and Beals remain. Jonesport and Columbia Falls pulled out last year, and Columbia is in the progress of leaving.)

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  42. Wildfire put out by local departments, forest service

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    Unusually dry conditions likely contributed to a wildfire that spread through nearly 18 acres of Northfield and Wesley last week. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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  43. Sipayik Elementary School teacher named 2021 Washington County Teacher of the Year

    Sipayik Elementary School also known as Beatrice Rafferty School Teacher Diana Mahar is the 2021 Washington County Teacher of the Year, announced during a virtual ceremony Wednesday, May 12.

    The Maine Teacher of the Year program honors the contributions of Maine Teachers. The County Teacher of the Year is committed to excellence and nurture the achievements of all students and his/her exemplary skills inspire students and colleagues.

    Ms. Mahar has been teaching at Sipayik since 2014 and currently in her 4th year of teaching 5th grade.

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  44. Free outdoor day camp for girls at the Milbridge Commons

    Women for Healthy Rural Living (WHRL) and Maine Outdoor School, L3C, (MOS) are excited to announce that registration is now open for OWLette, a free summer day camp for girls. Owlette will happen twice this summer, and participants will gain outdoor, gardening, and naturalist skills while learning about climate change. The first session will be June 28 through July 1st and will be for girls ages 11 - 16.

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  45. Wild Blueberry Heritage Center invites your stories

    The Wild Blueberry Heritage Center and Museum, a community-minded nonprofit showcasing one of Maine’s most iconic crops, invites your stories and your stuff.

    That is, if you raked blueberries every August in your childhood, or if you have old rakes or winnowers or boxes needing a new place besides your old barn – you are welcome to contribute both memories and items, including photographs, to the museum’s exhibits.

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