Local News

Senator Collins and Secretary of Interior Get Boat Tour of Acadia National Park

Updated 5 years ago

Senator Susan Collins and Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar were in Bar Harbor today.Getting a boat tour of Acadia National ParkIt was the first visit to Maine for Secretary SalazarAnd as Meghan Hayward tells us, it probably won’t be his last.” You know I had seen Acadia on a map. Senator Collins had actually talked to me about Acadia before. But I had never contemplated the immenseness of the place, the beauty and the fact that there is more than sixty islands that make up this place.”On Saturday Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar got to see Acadia National Park firsthand.He and Senator Susan Collins got a boat tour of Acadia, which has just recently received more than 8 million dollars in project funds under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act signed by President Obama earlier this year.It’s money Salazar says will benefit the area greatly.” The stimulus money that is being spent here at Acadia is going to create jobs. It’s going to create jobs now and it’s also going to make the investments that will make sure Acadia continues to be the economic engine for this area that it has been in the past.”Salazar says the impact from the money will be seen for years to come.” The improvements that are being made at the environmental school in Schoodic and the other investment in the park will ensure we are creating jobs now as well as protecting the place for future job creation.”Salazar says in such trying economic times he hopes the steps being made will boost everyone’s morale.” I think in these times of economic crisis when we’re facing so many problems internationally. Here at home it’s important for us to refuel the spirit of Americans.”Saturday’s trip to Maine was the first for Secretary Salazar.Senator Collins visited acadia last year.But says its beauty always surprises her.” It’s wonderful to see the progress of Schoodic on the education center which I am particularly interested in.”Senator Collins says she was happy Secretary Salazar accepted her invite and hopes he will return.He says it’s quite likely.” It really is one awesome place for this country and Maine.”

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CD Release Party in Bangor

Updated 5 years ago

Little ones danced to their hearts’ content at the Bangor Opera House on Saturday.A CD release party was held there for The Flannery Brothers’ album, called “love Songs for Silly Things.”Dan and Michael Flannery write children’s music and have been performing around Maine and New England.They recently won a prestigious children’s songwriting competition.The folks at the Penobscot Theatre hosted the celebration, which included jugglers and face painting.The proceeds from tickets will go towards their childrens’ theatre programs.For more information on The Flannery Brothers, or to purchase their CD, log on to www.flannerybrothers.com

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Boston Distributor Drops Uncle Henry’s

Updated 5 years ago

Uncle Henry’s will no longer be distributed by the Boston Herald.Officials at the paper apparently made the decision after pressure from anti-gun activists, who said gun sales arranged through Uncle Henry’s were contributing to violence on the streets of Boston.The booklet’s pulisher, Kevin Webb, says he’s looking for another Boston-area distributor.He also says the Uncle Henry’s website will continue to list firearms.

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Home Sales Up in Maine

Updated 5 years ago

Maine home sales were up last month, but the median sales price was down about ten percent.That’s according to the Maine Association of Realtors.Real estate agents sold 1,133 homes last month, up from 996 the previous June.The median sales price was $170,000, which was up from May but down from a year ago.While Maine home sales were on the rise in June, the association says sales in the Northeast fell about 5 percent from a year ago.

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Red Tide Closures Could Have Severe Economic Impact

Updated 5 years ago

This year’s spread of Red Tide could have a serious economic impact on Maine’s coastal communities.That word comes from Umaine researcher Kevin Athearn.He’s a professor of natural resource economics.He says just a one-week closure of harvesting soft-shell clams, mahogany quahogs and mussels would mean a nearly 3 million dollar loss to Maine’s economy…This year, though, red tide closures are expected to last much longer…possibly even months.Senator Olympia Snowe recently announced that the National Oceanic and Atmospherics Administration will dedicate $121,000 to research on the current outbreak.

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Ride for Autism

Updated 5 years ago

Dozens of bikers descended on the Bangor waterfront Saturday to help raise money for kids with autism.The Ride for Autism Awareness is a 55 mile trek.The money raised will help support local families whose children live with the neurological disorder, which is said to affect one in every 150 kids.The route went from Bangor to Brewer, then Bucksport, Stockton Springs, back through Hampden and ending in Bangor at the University College of Bangor.Eric and Monique Iken are co-organizers of the event.They have three sons with autism, so the cause is close to their hearts.The ride has been held in Lincoln the past two years…this is the first time it’s been held in Bangor.

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WWII Veterans Reunite in Bangor

Updated 5 years ago

Dozens of World War two veterans are in Bangor this weekend for an emotional reunion.The 64-th annual reunion of the Ninth Infantry Division Association is being held at the Ramada Inn.More than a hundred veterans known as the “old Reliables” came from around the country for the celebration.Many are in their nineties, but were eager for the chance to get together with old friends to reminisce..There was also an emotional memorial service for those members who were killed in action…or who have died in the years since the War.

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Convicted Child Molester Sentenced to Federal Prison

Updated 5 years ago

A Waterville man in jail on child molestation charges is now facing federal prison time.38-year-old Olin Dudley Stevens is behind bars at the Maine State Prison for sexually assaulting two girls younger than 14, back in 2007.He’s serving an 8-year sentence.Now, he’s also facing seven years in federal prison for not registering as a sex offender when he moved to Maine from Rhode Island.Some of that will be served concurrently with his state sentence.Stevens was required to register as a sex offender in Rhode Island, following conviction on two sexual assault charges in 1993.

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Rockland Named Coast Guard City

Updated 5 years ago

Rockland has received a very special honor, it’s been named a Coast Guard City.There are only 8 cities in the US that have attained that designation, and Rockland is the only one in New England.The Coast Guard Barque Eagle pulled into port today in Rockland as part of a city wide celebration.Many braved the rain in Rockland today to watch the tall ship pull into port.Coast Guard Barque Eagle was built in 1936 as a cadet training ship for the German Navy. The US got the ship as a World War two reparation. It was renamed the Eagle and has served the Coast Guard as a training ship since 1946.Dan Kubasch, a cadet aboard the ship says, “We’ll take a couple of weeks on here and learn the old way of sailing before we move to a modern day coast guard cutter with power.”The cadets learn basic seamanship and nautical skills aboard the Eagle.”It’s certainly a unique experience, something that almost no one sees routinely in their lives.” says Eric Jones, a commanding officer on the Eagle.Today the Eagle was part of Rockland’s celebration. It’s been named a Coast Guard City.Jim McPherson, Sector Commander for Northern New England says, “There’s very few cities that even qualify to be a coast guard city. The celebration really signifies our great connection with the people of Rockland.”The celebration includes a street fair and the city will dedicate a bell outside the Lighthouse Museum to the Coast Guard.Michael Miller, Chairman of Rockland City Coast Guard Committee says “The city has always interacted with the coast guard, ya know, in cities like New York or larger cities, it’s not really a hometown. In Rockland it is a hometown for these guys.””Other bases in the Marine Corps, in the Navy, they’re huge bases that kinda take over the area. We in the coast guard have small bases and all our people are really in the community.” says McPherson.And the folks of Rockland say they’re proud that the Coast Guard will call their city home.

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Bangor Crash Sends Two to the Hospital

Updated 5 years ago

Two people were sent to the hospital after a car accident on the Odlin Road in Bangor.Two cars collided late this afternoon. An S.U.V. ended up on its side in a ditch. Fire crews had to stabalize it before getting the driver and a passenger out.Both suffered serious injuries and were taken to local hospitals. Their injuries are not believed to be life threatening.The driver of the other vehicle suffered minor injuries. Bangor Police are investigating.

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Penobscot Man Facing Sex Charges

Updated 5 years ago

For the second time, a 36 year old man from Penobscot is facing sex charges involving a young girl. Michael Webber was found not guilty of similar charges just last year.This time Webber is accused of inappropriately touching a 14 year old girl earlier this month. He was arrested on July 14th. He’s charged with unlawful sexual touching and assault.Webber is free on $1000 cash bail.

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Graduation Day for Bangor Chinese School

Updated 5 years ago

Some young students are getting a whole new vocabulary this summer, one that will help them communicate with people across the globe.”She said, ‘Do you want to learn Chinese?’ And I was like, ‘Sure!’” says 11-year-old Sebastian Ragot.After four weeks of studying Chinese, these students are showing off what they’ve learned.”I like learning music, culture and language. I also come for the food,” says 11-year-old Anthony Mason.It was graduation day for the summer program “The Future Speaks Chinese,” put on by the Bangor Chinese School.”In four weeks we can see from their performance they learn a lot. And the kids, they love this language!” says Jing Zhang.This year some students attended for free, thanks to a grant from the National Security Language Initiative.”I have an interest in that part of the world, so I saw the opportunity and wanted to take it,” says 11-year-old Jamie Hammack.The program – Startalk – encourages learning languages from strategically important countries.”We are so lucky to get the support from this program,” Zhang says.Despite the complexity of the language, these guys say they’re learning quickly.”Once you learn a couple of words you start making a whole new vocabulary,” Mason says.They’re also picking up on cultural differences. “How they have more respect for their elders and how they take care of their elders,” Hammack says.Some students say they’ll be back next year for more.”It was pretty fun,” Ragot says.”You just come, and learn Chinese!”

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Governor Baldacci Hands out K.C. Jones Basketball Camp Awards

Updated 5 years ago

In his playing days K.C. Jones teamed up with Sam Jones in the Boston Celtics backcourt.Today he paired up with Governor Baldacci to recognize the achievements of some youngsters in Bar Harbor.Today was the last day of the K.C. Jones basketball camp at the Mount Desert YMCA.The multi-title winning former Celtics player and coach has sponsored the camp for the past three years.Governor Baldacci stopped by to hand out this session’s top four awards.Executive Director of the YMCA Kim Harty says the camp is about much more than just awards.”Along with the YMCA’s mission with caring, respect and honesty the kids are not just getting life less but skills in basketball.”Harty says it was a great honor to have Governor Baldacci take part.

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Downtown Ellsworth Finds a Way for the Sun to Shine

Updated 5 years ago

We got a lot of rain today but the sun was out in abundance along Main Street in Ellsworth.Meghan Hayward explains.Despite the rainy weather this summer businesses along Main Street in Ellsworth are making sure the sun is out in their buildings.Owner of Coastal Interiors Lori Chase thinks it’s added a lot to downtown.”Happy color and sunshine where we have no sunshine all summer long.”The project is called Celebrate Sunshine with Friends.Artists have decorated metal suns with different designs which are on display along Main Street.Early next month all of the suns will be auctioned off to benefit Faith in Action.”Faith in Action is a program that assists the elderly and disabled in Hancock County with free volunteer services so they can stay independent”Executive Director Jo Cooper says she thought a public art display and auction would be a perfect fundraiser.”We wanted an item that could be hung in a garden, outside on a house or inside. And this was and we also wanted something upbeat.”Chase designed one of the suns and says she was happy to help the program.”It’s tremendously important. That kind of organization is vital to small towns across the country. And if we don’t help support them at this level we can’t expect them to be there for us.”Cooper says she never expected the kind of involvement this project has gotten.”There’s a lot more participation from artists than we ever expected. It’s not such a daunting project but what is fun is to see whole families doing it together. It’s really been a community event.”The auction is on Monday, August third and will be held at The Grind on Main Street in Ellsworth at 5:30.For more information about the auction or to reserve a bid, call Jo Cooper at 664-6016.

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Bike Ride Raises Money and Awareness for Autism

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

You’ve heard the numbers – one in every 150 children is living with Autism. For a family in Bangor, the statistics are even more stunning – all three of their boys are diagnosed with the neurological disorder.That’s why Monique and Eric Iken hope a fundraiser this weekend will make a difference for them and others like them.Monique says their their sons, 10-year-old Ryan, 8-year-old Colin and 6-year-old Joe, have a lot of sensory needs and can get overstimulated.”It’s hard especially early on when they were younger, going out in public because when they get overwhelmed, they’ll scream and throw a tantrum and people will look at you like what’s the matter with your kid? What’s the matter with you – why can’t you control your kid?”The Ikens have learned how to manage the boys’ disorder. But Eric says they couldn’t do it without the help of Penquis Autism Community Services.”It’s a fantastic organization. They did a lot for us in just getting us grounded in what autism was and what kind of services were out there.”A 55-mile motorcycle ride Saturday is collecting money to the support program, which the Ikens say stopped their family from turning into a train wreck. “There were violent outbursts with our kids. They just couldn’t cope with situations they were in. They weren’t learning because they were just so overwhelmed.”The Ikens also want the ride to raise awareness about autism and give other families the help and hope they need, too. “Five years ago when we were first getting our first son diagnosed with Autism, you didn’t hear much about it, even with Asperger’s which is what we were dealing it, it was even less common. And now people are much more aware of it and this just allows people to see that it’s out in the community and it gets people excited and it’s great, it really is.” The Ride for Autism Awareness leaves from the Bangor Waterfront Saturday morning. Registration starts at 8:30 a.m. It’s 10-dollars per bike and 5-dollars for each additional passenger.That includes a cookout lunch at the U-C-B gym after the ride.

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Alzheimer’s Quilts on Display in Augusta

Updated 5 years ago

“Alzheimer’s: Forgetting Piece by Piece,” the 52-quilt exhibit about Alzheimer’s disease, will be on display July 23-26 at Maine Quilts at the Augusta Civic Center in Augusta. This exhibit will be hosted by Pine Tree Quilters Guild, Inc. at their 32nd annual quilt show. The work of 52 quilt artists from 30 states, plus one artist from New Zealand is represented in the exhibit. The artists, many internationally renowned, offer poignant interpretations of the Alzheimer’s experience in fiber. Themes include imaginings of an existence stripped of memory and learning: gritty illustrations of the anger, frustration and stress of care-giving: beautiful tributes to loved ones taken by Alzheimer’s: and the anticipation of a future cure. Each artist statement is paired with a fact about Alzheimer’s. This exhibit has been seen by more than 200,000 people across the country. For more on the “Alzheimer’s Art Initiative” and more information about the book, “Alzheimer’s: Forgetting Piece by Piece” which highlights each quilt and artist visit www.alzquilts.org.In addition to “Alzheimer’s: Forgetting Piece by Piece,” there will be more than 500 quilts on exhibit: these include antique, contemporary and judged quilts ranging from 12” wall hangings to king-sized bed quilts. There will be daily lectures, free demonstrations, quilt appraisals, workshops and a silent auction of quilted items. All proceeds from the silent auction will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter. Admission to the Maine Quilt Show is $8. Show hours: Saturday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.: Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Children 12 and under are free with paying adult.

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UMaine Yard Sale

Updated 5 years ago

Bargain hunters can score some great deals at the University of Maine this weekend.A yard sale is set for Saturday. The proceeds will benefit the newly opened Black Bear Exchange.It’s a food pantry and clothing store on campus.All the items for sale were abandoned by students when they left campus in May.This is the third surplus property yard sale on campus this year.It’ll be held Saturday from 8 to noon at Stewart Commons on Hilltop Road.For a list of items up for sale, log on to www.umaine.edu/property/sale

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Family-owned Store in Lincoln to Close

Updated 5 years ago

A family-owned business that’s been on Lincoln’s Main Street for more than 50 years is closing its doors for good.The Vose family is packing up their jewelry store…and as Amy Erickson reports, folks in Lincoln say it’s going to leave a big void in the community.”Nothing like a small town. We can give as good services as the others can.”Jim Vose says that service is what’s kept his store in business for 54 years.JK Vose Fine Jewelers has been a fixture on Lincoln’s Main Street for decades. “I just liked gemstones and diamonds mostly.”Vose customers have been loyal for years. “I think they’re so personable, really. They’re just so pleasant, always greet you with a smile, very attentive.””They’re hometown people you’ve known forever and they’re a staple here.””You need anything fixed, you can get it fixed and you know you’ve got someone you can trust.”But next month, the door will close for good.The Vose family has decided it’s time to move on.Daughter Kathy Vose-Wilson, who now runs the store, is ready to take some time for herself…When the “store closing” sign went up, the customers started pouring in, eager for a few last trinkets.”I’m sad, I’m sad.””So you figured you had to buy a few more pieces? I really needed two more rings! I could probably fill one of her showcases now!” “I just don’t know where I’m going to go buy jewelry now.”Although Jim Vose knows the closure is inevitable, he’s sad to be leaving a void in the community. “Right now, it’s almost like you’ve got to go to Bangor to get a watch battery put in. That’s not good.””You come in, we’d do something quickly and you can go, so I don’t know how that’ll work out.”

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Glenburn Man Who Swam from Police Out of Jail

Catherine Pegram

Updated 5 years ago

A man from Glenburn who tried to swim away from police in the Penobscot River is out jail after posting a $500 cash bail.20-year-old Allan Burke-Sapiel made his first court appearance Thursday afternoon. He made bail Thursday night. Police say Burke-Sapiel stole a car on Sixth Street in Bangor early Wednesday morning and took it for a joyride. When officers caught up to him, Burke-Sapiel reportedly abandoned the car and ran away.He made it across the Brewer bridge, but Brewer police officers were waiting on the other side. So, police say, he jumped into the Penobscot River and swam as far as the Penobscot Plaza before surrendering to officers.Burke-Sapiel is charged with receiving stolen property and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

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Red Tide Study

Updated 5 years ago

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has awarded $121,000 in emergency research funding aimed at learning more about the red tide outbreak that has shut down most of Maine’s clam flats.N.O.A.A. said on Thursday that the money will go to the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in partnership with the University of Maine for research cruises to monitor the toxins that taint clams and mussels, making them unsafe for people to eat.The information will help resource managers determine how long red tide conditions may stick around and if there are places where it’s receding or expanding.N.O.A.A. says this summer’s red tide outbreak has shut down most of the coast of Maine and New Hampshire coasts and parts of Massachusetts’ coast to shellfish harvesting.

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