China School’s Forest day camps and family forest activities (Summer 2019)

Local educator and Maine Master Naturalist, Anita Smith, will be offering several day camps and family forest activities at the China School Forest. All programs start at the China Primary School bus circle, 763 Lakeview Drive, China. Limited scholarships are available, upon request. For more information or registration form, contact Anita Smith at 968-2255 or

For updates and to RSVP for Family Forest Events, see


Day camps are for children entering grades 2-6. Space is reserved once your registration form and fee are received and you receive a confirmation email. Each day camp is limited to 10 students and run rain or shine. Cost is $30, per child, per camp. We would also love to have a few students grades 7-12 join us as Jr. counselors. If interested, please email us.

July 8-10 Pond Explorers Day Camp: We will use dip nets and learn about pond plants and animals, play games, do crafts and meet some fascinating pond critters. Prepare to get wet! 12:00-3:00 pm

July 24 – 26 Things with Wings Day Camp: Have fun learning about bugs, birds and bats! We will play games, catch bugs, dissect owl pellets and do some fun crafts at this wing-themed camp. 12:00-3:00 pm.

August 5 – 7 Happy Camper Day Camp: Build your own nature forts, explore real animal pelts and skulls, make your own hiking stick and more during this camping-themed session. 12:00-3:00 pm.


Naturalist Anita Smith at 2017’s Pirate Camp. (Photo courtesy of China School’s Forest)

Family Activities are for all ages, even our littlest friends! An adult must accompany the child for the activity. Please RSVP on our Facebook page or by email so we have enough materials for all participants. Family Forest Activities are free, but donations are gratefully accepted to help cover the cost of materials. If we have to cancel, it will be posted on our Facebook page the day before the event.

July 6 Family Forest Fun: Pond Explorers. Come explore the pond using dip nets and see discover lives under the water. Can you croak like a frog or fly like a dragonfly? Suggested donation $5. 9:30-11am.

July 27 Family Forest Fun: Nature Walk, Fairy Houses and Toad Homes Gather natural forest materials and build fairy houses and toad homes in our school forest. Suggested donation $5. 9:30-11am. For all ages. You can even wear your wings and learn to croak like a frog!

I’M JUST CURIOUS: What is an apron?

by Debbie Walker

‘What is an apron?’ may sound like a foolish question to some but I assure you there are people who do not know what it is or its purpose. I admit that I did not realize how many styles there were and their purpose. I am again sharing with you.

The apron most of us older folks probably think of is our grandmother’s. However, I am not sure we all appreciated the many jobs it assisted grandmother with. The original purpose was to protect the dress underneath. It was cheaper to make than new dresses, easier to wash. There were times they even used it as a potholder. It helped grandmother to dry a child’s tears and maybe even wipe a nose or two (sorry if you have a weak stomach).

Those aprons were known to carry eggs from the coop possibly even a baby chick or two to warm up in the kitchen. Did you ever hide behind her apron because you were shy with strangers? An apron was used to wipe a brow or at times to warm grandmother’s arms.

Today, can you imagine the germ freaks testing to see how many were on your favorite grandmother’s apron?

There are aprons for many different uses, more than I ever imagined. Waist aprons that cover the body from the waist down and bib aprons that cover the entire front. You find aprons to cover a list of problems and then mostly today you will find the comical ones used for things like barbecuing or home bartending.

The Pinafore is an apron used by girls and women as a decorative garment or as a protective apron, protective applies to most. Have you ever heard of a Tabard? It’s an apron that covers both front and back of body used for bakeries, hospitals, and large retail stores.

I had never heard of the Tabard nor had I ever heard of the Bungalow apron. It looks to me like it was a cross between a house coat (robe) and the house dresses of that time. Today, I believe the Bungalow is called a Lounger.

There are others that are like the ones we have discussed (special occasion, job related, etc.) but they may have been made of leather. The cobblers apron comes to mind.

In the 1650s the apron became part of the law. Women and girls were to dress properly; think of the Puritans. I believe their black dresses and the long white apron was considered proper.

You can find this and more information on the History of Aprons on the internet. It has been an interesting read to me.

The Wandering Nanas are still wandering at this writing. Tonight, we will be going to see the city of Pittsburgh and the night lights around the PNC Park. This has been an amazing trip. Exciting and relaxing at the same time. We will be heading back to Florida this week. Once we are back, I’ll write Chapter 2 of The Wandering Nanas. Nana Dee has been dreaming up other possible trips for us so we may have additional chapters to come.

I really would like to hear from you and your apron memories. Contact me at Hope you have enjoyed the read. Don’t forget we are on line as well. Thank you for reading!

GARDEN WORKS: It’s planting time! Helpful hints to get your garden growing

photo by Emily Cates

Emily Catesby Emily Cates

Finally, after what seems like forever, the soil in the garden is ready to plant what we’ve all been waiting for: tasty tomatoes, sumptuous squashes, wonderful melons, among many more. After a tough winter and tardy spring, we’re going to make up for lost time. To get things growing, we have a few tricks up our sleeve. This time we’ll look at planting strategies and growth promoters.

This year’s planting season is definitely behind schedule by a couple weeks or so. But don’t despair, it should all catch up just fine with the right care. Early plantings, unless covered somehow with a hoop house or cold frame, won’t grow much faster than if they were planted when the soil warms up. So no worries for slacking this time.

However, I would certainly recommend planting long season, commonly direct-seeded veggies like corn, squash, beans, melons, pumpkins, and gourds right away. We definitely want them to have enough time to mature before our first frost in the fall. Tomato, pepper, eggplant, and others that are planted as seedlings will also appreciate being set out ASAP.

Cool-weather crops that are direct-seeded like peas and spinach have probably missed the boat as far as spring sowing goes, but will be happy to get a second chance to be planted in about a month for a fall harvest. Lettuce and salad greens like to chill in the shady part of the garden when summertime sizzles.

Black plastic mulch speeds up the growth of heat-loving plants and keeps weeds at bay. Also, floating row covers provide an added layer of warmth and protect plants from pests, providing the cover is removed when needed during pollination.

Most important is a nice, rich, healthy soil with adequate nutrients for the plants to grow fast enough to catch up. Liquid fish and seaweed fertilizers can be applied as directed. Compost and aged manure are great mixed into the garden or top-dressed as needed. I’ve read a ratio of 1:10 organic matter to soil, but heck, that seems minimal to me and I just load it on with fine results. Squash especially grows like crazy when planted in a manure pile, and that’s just what I want. Now if the weeds weren’t as enthused.

FOR YOUR HEALTH – Make Health A Family Reunion Affair: Talk With Your Family About Kidney Health

(NAPSI)—Family reunions are a great way to reconnect with loved ones, celebrate your family’s heritage and make new memories. Family reunions are also an opportunity to talk about family health history.

You may have family members who have diabetes, high blood pressure or both. These are conditions that often run in families and are risk factors for kidney disease. Kidney disease affects African Americans more than other groups. That’s why it’s important to talk to your family about risk factors for kidney disease, how to get tested and how kidney disease can be treated.

Kidney disease is a serious and common health problem, affecting an estimated 30 million adults in the United States. Kidney disease means your kidneys are damaged and can’t filter blood the way they should. Kidney disease can often get worse over time and may lead to kidney failure. If your kidneys fail, you will need dialysis or a kidney transplant to maintain your health. The sooner you know about your family history of kidney disease, the sooner you can make changes to help protect your kidneys.

To get you started talking with your family about kidney health, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), a part of the National Institutes of Health, created the Family Reunion Health Guide. This guide offers basic information about kidney disease and suggests approaches you can take to connect with your family about kidney health. You can use this guide to help make kidney health a family reunion affair. Information in the guide includes materials and tips to help you:

Talk With Your Family About the Risk Factors for Kidney Disease

Diabetes and high blood pressure are the two leading causes of kidney disease. You are also at risk if you have a family history of kidney failure or have heart disease. The Family Reunion Health Guide can help you talk with your family about kidney disease and its connection to diabetes, high blood pressure and other risk factors.

Encourage Family Members at Risk for Kidney Disease to Get Tested

Many people with kidney disease don’t know they have the disease until their kidneys begin to fail. This is because you can have kidney disease without any symptoms. The good news is that when kidney disease is found early, there are ways to protect your kidneys by managing your blood pressure, eating a healthy diet and being active. There is no cure for kidney failure, but dialysis or a kidney transplant can help you live longer and feel better. The sooner you find out you have kidney disease, the sooner you can take steps to prevent more serious health problems. This is why it’s important to talk with your family about the need to get tested.

Make a Family Commitment to Kidney Health

You can reduce your risk for developing kidney disease by taking steps to live a healthy lifestyle. Diagnosing and treating the disease early can slow or prevent the progression of kidney disease. The Family Reunion Health Guide shares ideas for how you can encourage family members to take steps to protect their kidney health. By being your family’s kidney health champion, you can help ensure that your family enjoys many more reunions to come.

Learn More

For more information about kidney disease, kidney failure, diabetes, high blood pressure and more, or to access the Family Reunion Health Guide, visit the NIDDK website at

UMaine students explore the future by visiting China transfer station

On May 21, students from the University of Maine came to interview China Transfer Station Supervisor Tim Grotton, (seated) Selectman and Transfer Station Recycling Coordinator Irene Belanger (with a suitcase from the Swap Shop) and Transfer Station Assistant Keith Rhoades, right. Assistant Professors Cindy Isenhour, front left, and Andrew Crawley, front right, lead the class through the interview process as a method of doing research. (Contributed photo)

by Sandra Isaac

It was a breezy Tuesday on May 21, as China Transfer Station Manager Tim Grotton waited in the Swap Shop for a group of students from the University of Maine to stop in for an interview. The students are learning how to properly conduct interviews as methods of collecting data for research. Their class, Digital Eth­nography Field School’s Exploring and Documenting Maine’s Cul­ture of Reuse, is part of the Re­source­fulME project headed up by Cynthia Isenhour, assistant professor with the Department of Anthropology and the Climate Change Institute at the University of Maine and Andrew Crawley, assistant professor. According to their website, “ResourcefulME is a three year research project designed to explore the social, environmental and economic value of Maine’s vibrant reuse economy.“

The China Transfer Station originally started putting aside items that still had a second life after coming to the dump for disposal. As the collection grew, the transfer station had to construct a separate building to house all of the repurposed valuables. “The Swap Shop” has become very popular. China residents drop off anything that can be reused and “shoppers” give these items a new life. “Some people will pull up to the swap shop as soon as they see items being dropped off,” said Irene Belanger, selectman from China and Recycling Coordinator for the Transfer Station.

The students were on a day tour of resources in our local area. Prior to coming to the Transfer Station, they visited the Department of Environmental Protection and Uncle Henry’s to conduct interviews about how these entities are helping to impact the reuse culture in our Maine communities.

The students came prepared with their lists of questions, photography releases, and tape recorders. Students Cameron and Carrie spearheaded the interview with Tim Grotton, Irene Belanger, and Transfer Station Assistant Keith Rhoades. When asked, “Have you ever seen items returned?” Rhoades stated, “I once saw a buzz saw taken and returned over three times.” Belanger commented on the resale value of some items, while Grotton spoke of the wide variety of things that come in. The class held the interview in the actual Swap Shop building. While there, patrons came into the building to shop the entire time, not deterred by the size of the crowd in the structure.

The students were able to learn a lot during the interview. For example, not only is this operation an enjoyable pastime for the China residences, it is also saving thousands of dollars in items not having to be processed with the rest of the rubbish at the station. Recently, Ashley Farmington, of the China Transfer Station helped write and apply for a grant to help track the beneficial qualities of the swap shop. If approved, the results of the studies can assist other area transfer stations to set up their own swap shops, saving even more debris from landfills. Grotton agreed to share any data collected with ResourcefulME and the students.

The Swap Shop is effectively a Maine community doing what they do best – helping each other, the environment and the economy. After all, one man’s junk truly is another man’s treasure. Not only are we all benefiting from that concept, but now students are learning from it, too.

2019 Literacy volunteers awarded

Adam Bickford, left, and Maddie Beckwith, right.

Literacy Volunteers – Waterville Area has recognized Adam Bickford and Maddie Beckwith, both graduating seniors from Winslow High School, for winning the Literacy Volunteers – Waterville Area essay scholarship contest. Contributed photo

Palermo Community Center to show Inhabit

Palermo Community Center (Photo by Connie Bellet)

Permanent agriculture, known as “permaculture,” is an ecological design process that shifts human impact on our planet from destructive to regenerative. Inhabit has been called “the best film ever made about permaculture.” It is about solutions to long-standing agricultural and ecological issues facing us today, and the film focuses on examples from the Northeastern and Midwestern regions of America, so it is highly relevant to land use practices right here. For anyone interested in gardening, gentle integration of plants that help one another, and water conservation, this is a must-see!

All are welcome to the Palermo Community Center on June 28 for a free potluck meal at 6 p.m. Please bring a summer dish to share with friendly neighbors and enjoy the show in the cool downstairs screening room. The Community Center is just off Turner Ridge Rd. across from the ball field at the top of the hill. Look for the electric sign by the driveway. For other info, please contact Connie at 993-2294.

Cash cashes in with two home runs

Messalonskee Middle School (photo source RSU 18 Messenger)

by Dan Cassidy

Cash Bizier, a seventh grade student at Messalonskee Middle School, in Oakland, recently hit his first out of the park home run on April 28, playing against the Famington Flyers with his 50/70 Sunday League at Purnell Wrigley Field, in Waterville.

His second home run came on May 15, his 13th birthday at the Sidney Pits vs. Ward Electric playing with his Rec League team. Cash plays mostly as a utility player. He pitches, plays second base, catcher, shortstop and plays in the outfield. He is the son of Shannon and Jeremiah Bizier, of Oakland.

Erskine announces 2019 Renaissance Awards

Seniors of the Trimester recipients, front row, from left to right, Lydia Boucher and Elizabeth Sugg. Back, Alana York, Braden Soule, and Mireya Noa’Dos Santos. (Contributed photos)

On June 7, Erskine Academy students and staff attended a Renaissance Assembly to honor their peers with Renaissance Awards.

Recognition Awards were presented to the following students: Hannah Soule, Aidan Larrabee, Alana Beggs, Paul Slimm, Alisha Stevens, Samantha Heath, Maverick Lowery, Garrett Keezer, and Seth Reed.

Faculty of the Trimester recipients, front row, from left to right, James Johnson and Heide Hotham. Back, Ben Willoughby. (Contributed photos)

In addition to Recognition Awards, Senior of the Trimester Awards were also presented to three members of the senior class: Lydia Boucher, daughter of Crystal and Ryan Boucher, of Windsor; Elizabeth Sugg, daughter of Heather Spaulding Sugg and Will Sugg, of Palermo; Alana York, daughter of Cheryl and Andy York, of Palermo; Mireya Noa’Dos Santos, of China; and Braden Soule, son of Amanda and Jamie Soule, of Fairfield. Seniors of the Trimester are recognized as individuals who have gone above and beyond in all aspects of their high school careers.

In appreciation of their dedication and service to Erskine Academy, Faculty of the Trimester awards were also presented to Heide Hotham, guidance secretary and registrar; James Johnson, music instructor; and Ben Willoughby, social studies instructor.


Legal Notices for the week of June 20, 2019

18-A MRSA sec. 3-801

The following Personal Representatives have been appointed in the estates noted. The first publication date of this notice June 13, 2019

If you are a creditor of an estate listed below, you must present your claim within four months of the first publication date of this Notice to Creditors by filing a written statement of your claim on a proper form with the Register of Probate of this Court or by delivering or mailing to the Personal Representative listed below at the address published by his name, a written statement of the claim indicating the basis therefore, the name and address of the claimant and the amount claimed or in such other manner as the law may provide. See 18-A MRSA 3-804.

2019-146 – Estate of H. STEPHEN JEWELL, late of Skowhegan, Me deceased. Stephanie A. Miller, 201 Helens Lane, Hartland, Me 04943 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-150 – Estate of WELDON J. HUMPHREY, late of Pittsfield, Me deceased. Marilyn J. Badger, 1151 Athens Road, Hartland, Me 04943 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-151 – Estate of JEROME E. BARRY, late of Fairfield, Me deceased. Brenda L. Barry, 7 Jodie Avenue, Fairfield, Me 04937 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-153 – Estate of KENNETH McLEAN, late of Anson, Me deceased. Christine Fletcher, PO Box 493, Anson, Me 04911 appointed Personal Representative.

2018-146 – Estate of CAROLYN E. EVERETT, late of Athens, Me deceased. Paul R. Dionne, Esq,, 465 Main Street, Lewiston, Me 04240-6738 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-155 – Estate of DARRELL D. RODERICK, late of Solon, Me deceased. Dana L Roderick, 5 Dyer Street, Moscow, ME 04920 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-157 – Estate of MARILYN F. LLOYD, late of Pittsfield, Me deceased. Samuel Douglass Lloyd, Jr., 151 West Elm Street, Yarmouth, Me 04096 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-160 – Estate of DEAN A. CHASE, late of Palmyra, Me deceased. Gregory M. Chase, 140 Main Road, #2, Holden, Me 04429 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-162 – Estate of ROBERT S. BEATTIE, late of Pittsfield, Me deceased. Robert C. Beattie, 39 Prospect Street, Topsham, Me 04086 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-163 – Estate of STEPHEN M. BISHOP, late of Norridgewock, Me deceased, Kathleen Ann Bishop, PO Box 816, Greenville, Me 04441 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-164 – Estate of GERARD FORGUE, late of Pittsfield, Me deceased. Shantelle Buchanan, 17 Long Avenue, Lot 9, Clinton, Me 04927 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-165 – Estate of ARTHELENE M. HAMMOND, late of Rockwood, Me deceased. Katherine Urquhart and Steven Urquhart of 375 Goshen Road, Winterport, Maine appointed Personal Representatives.

2019-167 – Estate of VICTOR H. CARRIGAN, late of Anson, Me deceased. Jeremey James Maynard, 167 River Road, Anson, Me 04911 appointed Personal Representative.

2019-178 – Estate of KATHRYN J. HALLETT, late of Cambridge, Me deceased. Edward Sallie, 277 Topaz Drive, Chambersburg, PA 17202 appointed Personal Representative.

To be published on June 13 & June 20, 2019.
Dated: June 10, 2019 /s/ Victoria Hatch,
Register of Probate



Notice is hereby given by the respective petitioners that they have filed petitions for appointment of personal representatives in the following estates. These matters will be heard at 10 a.m. or as soon thereafter as they may be June 26, 2019. The requested appointments may be made on or after the hearing date if no sufficient objection be heard. This notice complies with the requirements of 18-A MRSA §3-403 and Probate Rule 4.

2019-152 – Estate of LORALEE DAWN BLOMERTH-SMALL. Petition for Change of Name (Adult) filed by Loralee Dawn Blomerth-Small of 324 Russell Road, Madison, Me 04950 requesting her name be changed to Loralee Leavitt Small for reasons set forth therein.

2019-161 – Estate of KIMBERLY DAWN CROSSON. Petition for Change of Name (Adult) filed by Kimberly Dawn Crosson, 21 Park View Street, Skowhegan Me 04976 requesting her name be changed to Kimberly Dawn Howes.

2019-166 – Estate of RACHEAL MARIE (HARTLEY) CASS. Petition for Change of Name (Adult) filed by Racheal Marie (Hartley) Cass, 1234 Hill Road, Canaan, Me 04924 requesting her name be changed to Rachelle Marie (Hartley) Cass for reasons set forth therein.

Dated: June 10, 2019 /s/ Victoria Hatch,
Register of Probate