Whitefield Lions induct two members

David, right, and Julie Rand, center, both of Jefferson, and First Vice President Lion Donna Brooks, left. (Contributed photo)

Two new members were inducted into the Whitefield Lions club at their regular meeting January 10. David and Julie Rand, both of Jefferson, are sponsored by First Vice President Lion Donna Brooks. Past President Lion Pam Moody performed the induction ceremony at the Whitefield Lions clubhouse, in Coopers Mills.

To learn more about the Whitefield Lions club or receive information about becoming a member, please visit http://www.whitefieldlionsclub.com/ or contact the president of Whitefield Lions club, Lion Kim Haskell at 446-2545.
Contributed photo

Fairfield Cops Care For Kids Program experiences another great year

Fairfield Police Department personnel, front row, from left to right, Capt. Paul St.Amand, Officer Casey Dugas, Officer Shanna Blodgett, Dispatcher Jeanne Kempers, Officer Jordan Brooks and Officer Joseph Pelletier. Back, Officer Patrick Mank, Sgt. Matthew Bard, Officer Nemiah Nattress, Chief Thomas Gould, Officer Blake Wilder, Officer Timothy MacArthur and Sgt. Matthew Wilcox. Photo by Tawni Lively, Central Maine Photography staff

by Mark Huard

Once again Fairfield Police Officers carry out their annual Cops Care For Kids, where they bring wrapped presents in their cruisers wearing Santa hats. This is a tradition started by Kingston Paul in 2006. At its inception, Kingston purchased all of the gifts and wrapped them himself to ensure that more of the children in the community were able to have enjoyable Christmas memories with their families without worrying about financial stress. The program has grown over the years. This is a heartfelt occasion for all those involved and something that all of the law enforcement employees take pride. This year was another success, as the officers delivered presents to 226 kids in 108 Fairfield households on December 20. Officers had met earlier in the month and spent a long evening in the town office basement wrapping presents for the event.

The program has developed into an application process that is sent out through the school systems. It is no longer limited to struggling households and has been expanded to reach any Fairfield child. The officers focus on giving back to the community they love and spend so many hours protecting. It is now more about giving back to the community that they love and spend so much time protecting.

Community Outreach is something that the officers recognize as a critical part of their job. They want children and adults to be able to join together, and there is nothing like magic of the holiday season to inspire good will among everyone. It’s carrying on the heartfelt sentiment of their fellow officer, Kingston Paul, who has since passed away. Officer Paul donated $20,000 to the program, which has assisted in creating a stable program with longevity. Despite the large donation, officers still donate weekly to the cause out of their own pockets.

The Fairfield Police Department has a vision of eventually expanding the program in hopes of focusing on community togetherness. They hope to hold an event at the community center which will allow officers and families to have more direct interactions with each other for a longer period of time. These positive experiences are life changing for children in regards to having positive memories and positive interactions with law enforcement. The vision is one of holiday treats, officer elves, a holiday movie and whatever else will bring a smile to the face of children. The officers will not retire their sleighs though, as they will still do home deliveries to those not willing or able to attend the event.

BBBS recruiting new volunteers

Husson University student and Big Sister Mikhaila Necevski, left, and her Little Sister Savannah Dube enjoy coloring, making clay sculptures and playing jump rope as part of their new match through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine.

January is National Mentoring Month, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine is celebrating its mentors (Bigs) and recruiting new volunteers to become Big Brothers and Big Sisters to over 100 children waiting to be matched.

Every January, the news is full of the same stories of people trying to eat healthier or hit the gym more often. This year, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine (BBBSMM) is changing that story by asking: What if this year, you could resolve to do something more important, more impactful? What if you could make a resolution worth keeping, one that inspires more resolutions? In 2019, the agency is asking people to resolve to become a Big Brother or Big Sister.

“Bettering yourself in the new year is a great goal,” said Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine Executive Director Gwendolyn Hudson, “and we know people are also thinking about how to better their community and how to make sure that when they reflect on the past year, they know they made a difference.”

According to Hudson, more than 100 youth in the agency’s 7-county service area from eastern and central Maine to the midcoast and Androscoggin County, are waiting to be matched with a mentor. “The only way to ensure they have someone to inspire them to reach their potential is for more adults to step up and volunteer to become Bigs,” she said, adding that becoming a mentor means committing to spending a couple of hours a week with a young person doing things that you love to do, like playing basketball, visiting the library, taking a walk or learning how to cook. “A small investment of time can have a big impact on a child.”

Community residents can learn more about local Littles waiting and how to become a mentor by following BBBS of Mid-Maine’s weekly “Waiting Wednesday” Facebook posts, sponsored by Hannaford Supermarkets. Throughout the month, BBBS is encouraging followers to tag a friend who would be a great Big Brother or Big Sister, using the hashtag #TheBigResolution. To learn more about becoming a Big or other volunteer opportunities, visit bbbsmidmaine.org, email info@bbbsmidmaine.org or call 207-236-BBBS.

WGN back

Charter Communications director of government affairs Shelley Winchenbach, locally known as Spectrum, has reported that they have reached an agreement with Tribune Broadcasting to provide WGN America and multiple local ABC, CBS, FOX and CW, and digital multicast channel affiliate stations to customers. They announced that they have reached a fair agreement and appreciated subscribers’ support and patience.

Winslow teen wins preliminary round of video competition

Ely Yang, left, a student at Winslow High School, and Allen Rancourt, president of Kennebec Federal Savings. (Photo courtesy of Dave Carew)

Advances to national competition

Ely Yang, a 17-year-old senior at Winslow High School, also studying videography at Mid-Maine Technical Center in Waterville, has been selected by Kennebec Federal Savings as the winner of the preliminary round of the “Lights, Camera, Save!” video competition, sponsored by the American Bankers Association. The competition, open to those between 13 and 18 years of age, solicits original short videos from teens nationwide; each video must promote the value of saving money and using money wisely among teens.

Ely worked with his MMTC teammates, Joseph Damon and George Bailey, to create the video. Ely’s teacher at MMTC, who made his team aware of the “Lights, Camera, Save!” competition, is Dave Boardman, Mass Media Communications Instructor.

Ely submitted his video to Kennebec Federal Savings, a participating financial institution for the “Lights, Camera, Save!” video competition. Kennebec Federal Savings selected Ely’s video to advance to the national competition and awarded Ely a new GoPro camera at a ceremony held in Waterville on January 4.

Ely’s video now advances to the national competition, where the first, second and third place winners will be announced by the American Bankers Association Foundation on February 27. The top three national winners will receive cash prizes of $5,000, $2,500, and $1,000 respectively, to fund their savings goals. Each winner’s school also will receive a scholarship for a teacher to attend the Jump$tart National Educator Conference.

Click on the video below to view the winning entry, or please visit: https://vimeo.com/304195544.

Dave Carew is a freelance book editor / publicist / copywriter. He can be reached at (615) 540-7457.

Fundraiser planned for Jacob Seigars

Jacob Seigars, of Palermo, will go through a second round of treatment for Acute Myeloid Leukemia. (Contributed photo)

To undergo leukemia treatment for second time

Submitted by Jane Golden

A spaghetti supper fundraiser, which will include 50/50 tickets and a silent auction, for Jacob Seigars, will take place on Saturday, February 2, between 4:30 and 7 p.m., at the Erskine Academy cafeteria, in South China, as he battles leukemia for the second time around. The fundraiser is sponsored by the Erskine girls basketball team.

The community is invited to come out and support Jacob Seigars, who is fighting his second round of Leukemia. Jacob is a 14-year-old teen from Palermo and China. He attended China schools from kindergarten until September 2017, then Palermo School from October 2017 to January 2018. He’s an all-star athlete who is especially talented on the basketball court and the soccer field. Jacob has a million dollar smile and always keeps his family and friends laughing with his jokes. He is so kind to everyone around him: holding doors open for others and usually the first to offer a helping hand wherever it’s needed. He missed his first day of high school and hasn’t yet been able to play in a high school sports game or attend a high school dance.

He was first diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia on January 15, 2018. He spent five out of the first seven months of 2018 in the hospital between Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital and Boston Children’s Hospital. In his first battle he had three rounds of various chemotherapies, blood transfusions, a PICC line put in and taken out, a central line put in and taken out, a ventilator while intubated, a feeding tube, countless bone marrow biopsies and lumbar punctures and a bone marrow transplant with marrow donated by his big brother Shawn.

He has been recovering from his bone marrow transplant at home since July 2018, and everyone believed he had fought and beaten his Leukemia. But on January 2, 2019, it was learned that Jacob had relapsed and he has to fight Leukemia for a second time. Since his diagnosis he has had another bone marrow biopsy, two lumbar punctures, started a new course of chemotherapy and had a new central line placed.

All money donated will go directly to Jacob’s family and will be used for gas, tolls, hotels, food while traveling to the hospital and any uncovered medical expenses.

If you can’t make the dinner but would like to donate either money or a silent auction item, please feel free to contact Jane Golden at janedickgolden@hotmail.com.

Common Ground: Win a $10 Gift Certificate! (January 10, 2019)

Identify the men in these three photos, and tell us what they have in common. You could win a $10 gift certificate to Retail Therapy boutique, 11 KMD Plaza, Kennedy Memorial Dr., Waterville, next to the Dairy Queen!* Email your answer to townline@fairpoint.net or through our Contact page.

You may also mail your answer to The Town Line, PO Box 89, South China, ME 04358. (To be eligible for the drawing, you must email or snail mail your answer to us — please don’t leave a comment!)

*Should there be more than one correct answer, a random drawing will be held to determine the winner.

Erskine tops school spirit challenge, again

Erskine Academy students celebrate by showing off their trophy for winning the School Spirit Challenge Tournament of Champions by raising a record-breaking 196,969 pounds of food. (Contributed photo)

Beginning in September, Erskine Academy, in South China, committed to a challenging mission to once again to collect food and funds to support the Good Shepherd Food Bank of Maine (GSFB) by participating in WGME13/Fox23’s School Spirit Challenge Tournament of Champions. The School Spirit Challenge (SSC) is a friendly competition between schools to show school pride and spirit, all while helping the community, according to a news release from Erskine Academy Headmaster Michael McQuarrie.

The program is designed to promote the school community and good stewardship with students of high schools in central and southern Maine through an eight-week food drive to benefit the Good Shepherd Food Bank and local food pantries.

This was the second time Erskine participated in the School Spirit Challenge, the first being two years ago, an event which they won handily over the other participating schools thanks to the efforts of many students, parents, alumni, businesses, and friends.

In 2016, Erskine was the School Spirit Champion for having raised nearly 85,000 pounds of food, an amount exceeding the total raised by the second and third finishers combined. Given this accomplishment, the school entered this tournament of champions with confidence. However, since the other competing high schools, also past champions, were all south of Erskine and have larger school enrollments, the collection goal was set at an ambitious 100,000 pounds of food.

Always up for a challenge and a worthy cause, the campaign was kicked off during the school’s homecoming in September. In attendance were WGME 13 anchor Jeff Peterson and representatives from the GSFB and the sponsors of this year’s SSC. The morning kicked off with students arriving at 5:30 a.m. for a tailgate breakfast served in exchange for their food donations.

The campaign continued until November 2 and was a bigger success than the academy ever imagined. The Erskine community pulled together collecting food and monetary donations and supporting the many activities to support the Challenge. Events included “Fill the Bus” with returnable containers, the Fly Like an Eagle 5K Run/Walk, Trivia Night, Trunk or Treat, Open Mic Night, and a dodgeball tournament. Off-campus activities included an EA Parents Food Drive Challenge. An online appeal went out on social media, and many generous donors gave through the Good Shepherd Food Bank’s virtual food drive.

Though initiated by Erskine’s students and faculty, they led what was a broader community campaign, supported substantially by many area businesses and organizations. The academy is grateful to its partners including Albison’s Printing, Augusta Emblem Club #233, B & B Septic Service, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, Borislow Insurance, Brian Reay Plumbing & Heating, Central Maine Pyrotechnics, Darling’s Ice Cream For A Cause, Dutil Enterprises, Fieldstone Quickstop, G & E Roofing, Glidden Construction & Foundations, Harvest Time Natural Foods, Hussey’s General Store, Jackson’s Lawn Service, Kempton Tobey & Son, Kennebec Savings Bank, Knowles Mechanical, Legacy Home Improvements, M.A. Haskell Fuel, MC Disposal, Mid-State Machine Products, Natanis Golf Course, O’Connor GMC-Buick-Chevrolet-Cadillac, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Tobey’s Grocery Store, TRICORP Federal Credit Union, William H. Brewer & Co., and United Insurance Agency. Erskine’s Student Council representatives will soon visit key contributors as part of their “Gratitude Tour.”

Erskine Academy won the competition handily by far exceeding its goal. Erskine raised a record-breaking 196,969.25 pounds of food for The Good Shepherd Food Bank, which is over twice the amount that any of the 60-plus competing schools has raised in the five years and ten seasons of this competition.

About this accomplishment, Headmaster McQuarrie says, “The School Spirit Challenge was for a great cause, and through it, our community engaged in collective problem-solving and activism as we made a significant difference, at least for a time, in the fight against hunger in Maine. We demonstrated, and others witnessed, the dynamism of EA’s values—stewardship, leadership, and relationships—at work. The work ethic, inspiration, and idealism of our young people, in particular, are humbling and heartening.”

In the coming weeks, the school will continue to recognize and thank the many individuals, including alumni from across the country, businesses, and organizations for their generosity and goodwill that aided the effort, strengthened the school community, and fed many hungry people in Maine.

CMYHA Tier III Peewee travel hockey team

Members of the Central Maine Youth Hockey Association PeeWee Tier III travel team include, front, left to right, Mason Capeless and Hunter Hallee. Second row, Hunter Hart Guertin, Blake Small, Dusty Bearce, Denny Martin, Cameron Dostie, Garret Card and Austin Gould. Third row, Will Bourgeois, Tatum Doucette, Grant Walther, Ben Foster, Kaylyn Bourque and Alexa Caccamo. Back, coaches Dan Bourgeois, Dennis Martin and Ryan Hallee. (Photo by Central Maine Photography staff)

Dinner and a movie returns to Palermo Community Center

Palermo Community Center (Photo by Connie Bellet)

Over the last 10 years, the Living Communities Foundation has earnestly striven to bring people together to learn about various aspects of sustainability, food and health, climate change, and empowerment through the documentaries it’s presented at the Palermo Community Center. As a result, the feedback has ranged from: “It’s depressing,” to “We know all that.” Can you imagine how hard it is to find intentionally funny documentaries? Well, we found some.

On Friday, January 25, following the delicious potluck dinner at 6 p.m., the Community Center will show If You’re Not in the Obits EAT BREAKFAST, hosted by Carl Reiner and starring Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Stan Lee, Jerry Seinfeld, and Betty White. These nonagenarians don’t retire. They inspire! Come and find out what their secret for enjoying every minute of life.

Here’s a “blast from the past” that will have you howling with laughter, horror, and disbelief: The Atomic Cafe is a compendium of re-colored government propaganda clips from the ’50s, when we were all blissfully ignorant and thought “Duck and Cover” would save our lives. Fake news is not a new phenomenon, and it’s a good thing we can look back on it and laugh. This film will be shown on Friday, February 22, following the lovely potluck meal at 6 p.m. at the Palermo Community Center.

The Kids Menu isn’t as funny as the previous two, but it does have a happy ending. Filmmaker Joe Cross, who brought us Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, discovered that childhood obesity is only the symptom of a much larger issue that affects all of us. This film will help you keep your New Year’s Resolutions when we all need a bit of a boost. The Kids Menu will be presented on Friday, March 29, following a healthy and delicious potluck meal at 6 p.m.

All presentations are free and open to the public. Bring a favorite dish to share and join the discussion and laughter. For more info, please call Connie at 993-2294.