Erskine bus schedules, Fall 2016

Students should be at their pick-up points 5-10 minutes before the stated pick-up times for the first few days of school.  Bus fare is $10 per week.  Parents of freshmen are advised to check the bus schedule at New Student Orientation.

Pat Vigue – Bus 13 (Palermo Area)

6:25 – Palermo School
6:30 – Turner Ridge Road
6:35 – Banton Road
6:40 – Level Hill Road
6:45 – North Palermo Road
7:00 – Weston Ridge
7:15 – Tobey’s
7:20 – Frontier Village
7:25 – Leave Frontier Village
7:30 – Arrive at Erskine Academy

Sheila Wescott – Bus 11 (Chelsea/Windsor Area)

6:12 – Leave Erskine to Tyler Road
6:17 – Weeks Mills Road
6:20 – Legion Park Road/

Lamson Road (turn-a-round)

6:23 – Barton Road
6:25 – 105 to Spring Road
6:50 – Chelsea School
6:53 – Wellman Road
6:55 – Route 17 to Windsor
7:00 – Hunts Meadow Road
7:10 – Route 126
7:15 – Vigue Road
7:20 – Route 17 to Route 32 Windsor
7:25 – Route 32 (Rideout’s Store)
7:35 – Arrive at Erskine Academy

Wayne Lacey – Bus 1 (Whitefield-Jefferson Area)

6:25 – Leave Country Corners Store
6:30 – Travel down Route 215
6:35 – Route 126 to Jefferson
6:40 – Jefferson Post Office
7:00 – Intersection of Route 32 & 17
7:10 – Intersection of Route 17 & 206
7:20 – Intersection of Route 105 & 32
7:23 – Choate Road
7:25 – Windsor Neck Road/South Road
7:30 – Kidder Road
7:30 – Arrive at Erskine Academy

Janice Cook – Bus 16  (Windsor/Whitefield/Coopers Mills Area)

6:18 – Leave Erskine- Rte 32 South
6:26 – Maxcy’s Mills Rd
6:28 – Griffin Road
6:33 – Vigue Road
6:37 – Townhouse Road
6:44 – 218N/194N
6:46 – Heath Road
6:50 – Hilton Road
6:52 – 218N //Mills Road
6:59 – Coopers Mills Main Street
7:00 – Windsor Road/Coopers Mills
7:02 – Erskine Road
7:04 – Wingood Road
7:08 – Erskine Road
7:09 – Windsor Road/Coopers Mills
7:15 – Route 105 to Rte 32
7:18 – Route 32 to Erskine Academy
7:30 – Arrive at Erskine Academy

Routes, drivers and bus numbers subject to change.

Alewife restoration meeting set in Vassalboro

An information meeting on Alewife Restoration Initiative  will take place on Monday, August 29 at 6 p.m., at the Vassalboro Grange Hall

There will also be an update on the East Vassalboro Water Company pipe relocation work, Masse saw mill and dam dismantling, and stream bank revegetation planning.

Palermo Days grand marshals

Royce and Jeannine Nelson

Grand marshals Royce and Jeannine Nelson ride in the parade during Palermo Days. Their son, Troy, is driving the tractor. Contributed photo

Letters to the editor, Week of August 25, 2016

Legion a place for camaraderie

To the editor:

Growing up in South China there were 2 places I would hang out with my parents. Church, of course, (most of the time with just mom) and the Legion Hall. You never know how good you have it until you look back at those times at the hall.

I never got close to my dad growing up. He always felt distant and strong. All I ever wanted to do is copy that behavior to be just like him. He’s been gone 26 years now and I’m finally understanding his behavior. It was the war. He went in as an innocent boy of 19 and returned a hardened man filled with nightmares of seeing his friends die in front of him. We seem to learn to connect with people who have also experienced the same things.

This brings me back to one of dad’s safe places. The American Legion was like a 12-step program for many of the veterans returning from combat. Their PTSD was called battle fatigue or shell shocked. Their nightmares could be shared with others at the Post.  They all recognized when they returned how safe and secure our little town was compared to war torn areas they saw overseas. They also didn’t want to get too close to people who wouldn’t understand.

Today’s legion has the same mission its had for the last 100 years. To bring veterans together to heal the wounds of war. We also use our membership dues to pay the Washington lobbyist to fight for veterans in Congress.  This is why we will have a membership drive during the Windsor Fair sponsored by The Town Line. We welcome and encourage all eligible veterans to join.   So, all you veterans, stop sitting on the bench, put your glove on and get in the game.

By the way, your spouse can join the Ladies Auxiliary, too!

Neil Farrington
American Legion Post 179
South China

Ideas for local development

To the editor:

I was pleased to see that my suggestion of a South China Village/Shops & retirement community made it into the August 18 edition.  As a member of the TIF committee, this is a suggestion that I would like the folks in China to consider and also, to offer their opinions.   Route 3 is a busy road, as is Lakeview Drive, and I believe the town’s people should look into developing this area, as the most commercially-viable location in China.  It’s only a matter of time before someone sees the full value of this location, whether it be in five years or 20 years.

We have the rare opportunity to specifically put something in place that the town wants, vs. someone putting ‘whatever’ in place, which we’d have to live with and have little say on its use.   I don’t know if this is the best use of the TIF funds, which can only be used for economic development, but I think it’s a good way to start some chit-chat mill in China.

In regards to the retirement community, I’d like to see a group of houses, specifically made for ease of access and maintenance, within walking distance of the proposed  South China shops and Hannaford.

I also wouldn’t mind a central lodge, similar to the Granite Hill Estates, in Augusta.  Not only will this help with the inevitable increasing taxes in town, I strongly believe that when folks get to the last year’s of their life, when a new car or gadget has lost its appeal — the most important thing is to have, is a safe and comfortable retirement with the one you love.  If one needs more care than the other can provide, a central assisted-living will provide the extra care they need, while the more self-sufficient person can still be independent, close by and most importantly, continue to be the love of their life.

There are some really cool things China can do with five million TIF Simoleons over 20 years.  Progress has been – and will continue on Rte. 3.  We can be on the organizing side of it or on the ‘live with it’ side.  I’d much rather see an area where we can get a Green Bean coffee and muffin on their patio, (where someone’s playing Jim Croce and The Eagles songs on an acoustic guitar) then walk to a Reny’s, maybe a pet store, kitchen store, Sweet Frog, chocolate shop, etc.,  because I personally don’t think we need another large, heavily-lighted business with a big red circle and a ‘K’ in the middle of it.  Let’s think big and do something remarkable with that TIF cheddar, shall we?
Kind regards.

Dale Worster

COMMUNITY COMMENTARY: Should we spend .5 million dollars on parking lot?

by Al Althenn
Member China Budget Committee

There currently is an initiative underway to push the taxpayers into spending over one half million dollars on a Parking Lot at the North end of the East basin of China Lake. See e-mail transmission underlined below just as it was received from the Town Office by me 8-17-2016:

Please see the attached draft estimate associated with the potential  redesign initiative of the Causeway Road for economic development consideration, and therefore for TIF funding. As noted at TIF Committee meetings, this is a preliminary report and will change over time as the project is perfected to be sent to the Select Board for review and then to the voters.  Spending our money this way one can expect would not only bring about higher taxes but significantly higher boat traffic and other unwanted issues on the lake.

The people paying the big property tax bills investing near the water would get to listen to more boats racing back and forth churning up the already dirty lake water, and would surely be adding to the litter, noise, and congestion, while the whole town has the privilege of paying the bill to support this intrusion. Certainly it would detract from the property values of lake front owners not to forget those near or within ear shot of the lake.

WHY? What do people in China get for this sacrifice in money and peace? Maybe a milfoil infestation.

Please see above mentioned chart below.page3pict1

Getting ready for some football

Winslow Youth Football

Winslow Youth Football coach Patrick Adams, left, and “Big Ben” Thomas practicing for the upcoming season. Photos by Missy Brown, Central Maine Photography staff


Giovanni St. Onge

Giovanni St. Onge getting in some work preparing for the upcoming season. Photos by Missy Brown, Central Maine Photography staff

Red foxes make their presence known

Roland D. Halleeby Roland D. Hallee

When we first moved out to camp for the summer in mid-May, we heard something mysterious on our fourth day out there. It was after dark, and from a distance, we heard a wailing, lamenting  siren-like shriek. Everyone around was wondering what was making that noise. At first we thought it was a small, yiping dog. But it continued almost uninterrupted.

Then, someone mentioned that a family of foxes had been residing under the main office during the winter, and had recently moved out.

red fox

A red fox in the wild. Internet photo

That was it. The sound we heard was that of a red fox. It is common to hear those kinds of cry during the foxes’ breeding season, and thought to be emitted by a vixen’s (female fox) summoning males. Foxes generally greet each other with high pitched whines, particularly submissive animals. During an aggressive encounter they will emit a throaty, rattling sound.

An adult red fox has been identified with 12 different sounds while kits may produce eight.

The red fox, Vulpes vulpes,  is the largest of the true foxes and the most abundant wild member of the species. It is listed as least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Besides its large size, red foxes are different from other species because of their ability to adapt quickly to new environments. There are 45 different subspecies of foxes.

A fox

A fox working its way through a trash can in an urban environment. Internet photo

The red foxes have a long history of interacting with humans, having been extensively hunted as a pest and furbearer for many centuries. Because of its widespread range and large population, the red fox is one of the most important furbearing animals harvested for the fur trade. Too small to pose a threat to humans, it has successfully colonized many suburban areas.

Urban red foxes are most active at dusk and dawn, doing most of their hunting and scavenging at these times. Despite their search for usable food, foxes tend to eat anything humans eat.

These foxes can cause problems for local folks. Foxes have been known to steal chickens, invade rubbish cans and raise havoc in gardens. In our case, we heard that a nearby neighbor, who kept chickens, had many disappear in a relatively short period of time. They will also prey on domestic rabbits and guinea pigs if they are allowed to run in the open. Urban foxes have been known to encounter cats and may feed alongside of them. In confrontations, cats usually have the upper hand, although foxes have been known to attack cats, not so much for food but rather as a competitor for food.

Red foxes are not readily prone to be infested with fleas.

Red foxes live in family groups, sharing a common territory. They may leave their families once they reach adulthood if the chances of winning a territory of their own are high. Otherwise, they will stay with their parents, postponing their own reproduction.

Red foxes have binocular vision, but their sight reacts mainly to movement.  Their hearing though, is their strength, being able to hear a squeaking mouse at about 330 feet. Their sense of smell is good, but weaker than that of a domestic dog.

Being the largest of the Vulpes genus, on average, an adult male will measure 14-20 inches high at the shoulders, 18-35 inches in body length, and the tails measuring 12-22 inches. Their weight range is 5 – 31 pounds, with vixens weighing 15 – 20 percent less.

Red Foxes are often mentioned in folklore and mythology of human cultures. In Greek mythology, the Teumessian fox or Cadmean vixen, was a gigantic fox that was destined to never be caught. According to  Celtic mythology, witches were thought to take the shape of foxes to steal butter from their neighbors. In later European folklore, the figure of Reynard the Fox symbolizes trickery and deceit.

The red fox originated from smaller-sized ancestors from Eurasia shortly after the Wisconsin glaciation, which took place approximately 85,000 to 11,000 years ago. It was the most recent major advance of the North American ice sheet complex.

At camp, the red foxes have been sighted many times, and because of that, we can’t leave the sliding glass doors open while we are not there. With only the screen door between the outside and inside, our pet rabbit would be fair game for a red fox roaming in the area.

The scent of Dudley – our 9-year-old Holland lop – would probably be too much to resist.

IF WALLS COULD TALK, Week of August 25, 2016

Katie Ouilette Wallsby Katie Ouilette

WALLS, you have so much to tell our faithful readers about, how are you going to write within the word-count?  First, you must thanks Roland Hallee, author of the Scores and Outdoors column in The Town Line newspaper, for telling about the pileated woodpecker.  Yes, they are so beautiful and, frankly, we see them here lakeside only as they migrate and perch on our tree trunks.  And he wasn’t migrating but we loved the visit from Grandson Marc Denis.  He drove to Maine from Virginia and his Sargeant Construction job there, but was here for only a few days. Yes, since his degree from the University of Maine at Orono, he’s definitely made us proud and we see Marc’s ‘Mountain’ on Rte. 2 or Marc’s ‘Hospital’ on Rt.201 when we drive in Maine.

Actually, this has been quite a week, as the family gathered when Elene and George Higgins celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.  Yes, and as I looked for a photo in our scrapbooks today, I saw photos of all the young children and grandchildren who have certainly grown up while we grew older!  Did you get that, WALLS?  We grandparents haven’t grown OLD…..but are young-at-heart!

That said, WALLS, you have reawakened a memory about Skowhegan Fair….again.  Well, actually that memory began right here
lakeside as the living room had to have some re-arranging.  Yup, there was the blown-glass boat that was sitting in the fish tank, which was chosen as the best to keep it safe in.  Do you know why that glass boat is so precious in our house?  Well, here we go with memories of Skowhegan Fair again.  It was the days of Gerald Marble’s being the chairman of the fair.  Now, anyone who knew him knew that seldom did anyone speak up to Gerald Marble of the Skowhegan Savings Bank.  Well, son Russell Denis’s first job was at the back gate at the fairgrounds and Mr. Marble appeared without his usual pass.  Now, Russ had been told to never let anyone through unless he/she had a pass.  You’ve guessed it, faithful readers, Russ said ‘sorry,’ and Mr. Marble had to go all the way home for his Pass.

Oh, yes, folks, much was assured over the years that nothing happened to the the blown-glass boat which was purchased for mom with his first paycheck.  Yes, Russ’ cat did jump into the fish tank, but was retrieved without incident, but now, faithful readers, you have heard about one more memory of Skowhegan Fair.

So, faithful readers, always remember your Skowhegan Fair memories……always.  Life is a great trip, but it is the memories that we have from our earliest years that is the magnificent auto by which we travel.

I’m Just Curious: Thank you! Thank you!

by Debbie Walker

Please bear with me and yet another local article about the lock down at Wal-Mart in the Newport/Palmyra store on Friday, August 19. My big thank yous to the Maine state troopers, local sheriff’s department, Newport police, Wal-Mart staff and management, Dunkin’ Donuts staff, first responders and anyone that I may have left out of this.

With all the craziness in this world today it was wonderful that the whole situation was taken care of with no shots fired. They were able to talk to a distressed, armed man and bring everything to an end, and send the man off for the help he obviously needed.

My friend Kathy and I went in to Wal-mart just before 10 a.m., we were in there for four things. Got right in there, found the things we wanted and were ready to head out. We were headed for the cashiers when a man said, “No need to hurry ladies, we are now on lock down”. Lock down!!!!! You’re kidding, but looking at the people milling around the doors told us he was telling the truth.

Soooo, what to do, so we walked around and the cart grew from four things to a cart load! Someone made the crack that maybe this was Wal-mart’s new marketing plan! I saw a man coming down an aisle with a flat loaded with chairs, didn’t take long to figure out this was going to be a while. So we went to Dunkin’ Donuts for some lunch. They were doing their part of passing out goodies to folks, too.

Most everyone we saw seemed to be trying to make the best out of a bad situation. You have to know no one planned on all that time in there. The staff went around with a cart with water and crackers. Someone else was passing out crayons and paper to the children. How people handle others in strange situations is always of interest to me. I was quite impressed with all the professionalism of all involved.

“Bless his heart,” there was one man in there that had left his dog in the car for a short trip into the store. Needless to say three hours later he is upset. It was towards the end of the ordeal the troopers took him out to bring in the dog and got him water. Kathy and I were feeling bad because that could have been us. Every other day last week we had Toby, her dachshund, with us. Guess we learned an important lesson. Sometimes things just don’t go as planned.
And believe it or not, after spending three hours in Wal-mart on Friday, I still have to go back to do our real grocery shopping. However, I think I will head for Waterville this week.

I’m just curious if we ever show people our true gratitude. Contact me at Sub line: Thank you. Thank you and looking forward to hearing from you!

Singer: June Christy; Composer: Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Peter Catesby  Peter Cates

A wonderful jazz singer of yesteryears.

This is June Christy by June Christy, Capitol T1006, 12-inch mono vinyl LP, recorded 1958.

June Christy

June Christy

The singer June Christy (1925-1990) was one of a very select group of jazz/pop singers who gained the most valuable experience honing and shaping their craft through working with the big bands before their own triumphs in the 1950s and after. Such names would include Peggy Lee, Perry Como, Jo Stafford, Doris Day, Chris Connor, Ella Fitzgerald, Anita O’Day, Sinatra, of course, and Miss Christy.

The album features 12 of the finest examples of craft to be found in the Great American Songbook – the Rodgers and Hart You Took Advantage of Me, Harold Arlen’s Get Happy, the ever joyous Bei Mir Bist Du Schon, Johnny Mercer’s I Never Wanna Look Into Those Eyes Again, Sammy Cahn’s Until the Real Thing Comes Along, etc. Her phrasing, diction, delivery and justly famous husky, wide-ranging soprano voice, along with Pete Rugolo’s spicy, vibrant arrangements, add up to a currently available four  CD set that includes seven other choice LPs, all for about 13 bucks.

A sad footnote – the singer struggled with alcoholism for years until her death from kidney failure in 1990 at the much too young age of 64.

Rimsky-Korsakov: Le Coq D’Or and Russian Easter Orchestra; Balakirev – Islamey; Sir Eugene Goosens conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra; Capitol G 7158, recorded 1959.

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsako

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908) is perhaps best known for the exceptionally brilliant and colorful four movement showpiece Scheherazade, which will be featured in a future column. This week I am focusing two other similarly masterful staples of his, namely the grandly majestic Russian Easter Overture and the eerie, very evocative Le Coq D’Or, along with the tone poem Islamey by the composer’s older colleague Balakirev. It adds up to a nice program of exhuberant music.

The mono LP showcases the distinguished conductor Sir Eugene Goosens (1893-1962) who came from a sizable family of formidably talented siblings, one sister a harpist who lived  past 100 and a father and grandfather with same name who were accomplished maestros in their day. These performances are competitive with the best since 1959,  and have been reissued on inexpensive CDs still available from internet sites such as Berkshire Record Outlet and the Amazon vendors, though separately with other works.

A postscript – Goosens conducted one or two orchestras in Australia, beginning in 1947, and achieving great success with audiences because of his judicious blend of traditionally popular classics and more modern works, many of which have become firmly established through concerts and recordings in our own time. He also ran afoul of the law and experienced professional disgrace through his involvement with pornography and Satanism, the sordid chronicle being recounted in his Wiki biography.