The Nature of Phenology: Winter loons

by  Joseph Horn

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Downeasters reflect on 2020, a year of great hardship and loss

by Ruth Leubecker

Often sequestered and lonely in 2020, Mainers, like the rest of a beleaguered nation, have been pervasively affected by the insidious presence of the coronavirus.

In the beginning -- way back last March -- if most thought about it at all, they considered possibly a month or two, and then it would all be over. Now, as another March fast approaches, hundreds of thousands have died nationally, and Maine, slow to wrack up those numbers, now has 28,000-plus cases and nearly 500 dead.

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Chance posting reunites Woodland alum with class ring, 32 years later

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

Richard Skinner doesn’t know exactly when he lost his class ring, but guesses it was not long after he graduated from Baileyville’s Woodland High School in 1989.  
“I had lost it so long ago, I figured it was long gone,” said Skinner. “I wasn’t even looking for it.”

It turns out he did not have to. Now, thanks to an enthusiastic community effort on Facebook, Skinner will soon be reunited with his ring, and it all began when Mary White received a text from a total stranger.

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J-BHS board okays cheerleading, teacher time for COVID absentees

by Nancy Beal

At the December 9 meeting of the Moosabec CSD board, the body that governs Jonesport-Beals High School, parents of students who were staying home because of COVID-19 and learning remotely reported dissatisfaction with students’ lack of contact with their teachers. The inability to take tests and perform labs, they said, was endangering their academic progress, adversely affecting their grades, and making them feel “like they had done something wrong.”

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Water rate hike tops Machias board agenda

by Hailey Wood

After a year of debate and discussion, the Machias Board of Selectmen has lost their battle against the Machias Water Company to prevent their proposed rate hike.

The topic of a rate hike was first introduced to Machias residents by letter in late February of 2020.

The new approved annual revenue for the Machias Water Co. comes out to a 30 percent rate hike, 5 percent higher than the original ask of 25 percent in the letter sent to Machias residents.

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Versant to file electricity rate increase proposal

by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

Versant Power, formerly Emera, will next week file a request with the Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to increase its distribution rates in 2021 and 2022, according to a Jan. 5 release to its customers.

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Fort McHenry or Fort Sumter?

by Jonathan Reisman


Donald Trump incited a riot on January 6th.  In  doing so,  he destroyed much of what he accomplished, validated the complaints about his narcissism, divisiveness and character flaws, and invalidated the legitimate grievances of his 75 million supporters about stolen elections, Black Lives Matter and Antifa “mostly peaceful” violence, arson and riots, media bias and leftist hypocrisy. He managed to legitimize the Biden crime family and provide aid and comfort to the very socialists and leftist tyranny he opposed.

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Milbridge couple survives COVID-19

by Wayne Smith

You could call Marge Lucas and her husband, Paul, survivors of COVID-19. Both living in Milbridge, Marge talked about how it affected their lives. She talked about the darkness of their experiences as she shone a little light on it. Marge is 90 years old and Paul is in his 70’s. With COVID-19, it turned their world upside down. Paul walks side to side. He likes his coffee. He never will give up his cigarettes. That’s kind of his best friend today.

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A virtual introduction to nature therapy program offered

Have you ever been touched by nature? Are you craving that connection again? Nature heals all: body, mind, and spirit. Join Susan Fortin on Zoom, for a reflection of Nature’s way of nurturing which will be hosted by the Beth C. Wright Cancer Resource Center on Thursday, Jan. 28 from 1 – 2:30 pm.

This virtual introduction to Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing or nature therapy), you can escape and share experiences beyond your backyard as the group will Experience Virtually: Outdoor Living in and near Acadia National Park.

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Eastport City Council votes in favor of reinstating fired police chief

by Jayna Smith

On Monday night, Jan. 4, Eastport City Council met for “a hearing on a Request for a Notice of Appeal” to the council “by an Employee with Regard to Termination of Employment.”  After approximately two hours of discussion, the council voted in favor to reinstate Police Chief Peter Harris.

Harris was hired by the Eastport Police Department in July of 2018 and appointed interim chief in April 2019. According to Harris, on Sept. 28, 2020, he was terminated by city manager Thomas Hoskins.

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