China middle school soccer teams

China girls soccer team

China girls soccer team included, front row, left to right, Elizabeth Hardy, Josette Gilman, Jasmine Crommett, Sarah Praul, Madison Lully, Mackenzie Roderick, Hannah Torrey and Sage Reed. Back, Julia Barber, Emma Jefferson, Emily Clark, Madyx Kennedy, Mikala McIntyre, Kayla Peaslee, Rebecca Morton, Brooke Allen and Coach Carl Peterson. Contributed photo

China boys soccer team

China boys soccer team, front row, left to right, Beck Jorgensen, Gabe Pelletier, Noah Rushing, Wyatt French, Wes McGlew, Brayden Wilson, Noah Ross and Mason Henderson. Back, Colby Cunningham, Hunter St. Jarre, Riley Mayo, Trevor Norton, Nick Barber, Chris Williams, Logan Tenney, Nathan Howell, Jacob Seigars and Coach Colby Foster. Contributed photo

I’m Just Curious: Scoliosis, again!

by Debbie Walker

I wrote about scoliosis a couple of weeks ago and since then I’ve had contact with a few people about this hateful defect. The general consensus of the topic is that it doesn’t get talked about enough.

In years past it seems that school nurses and gym teachers did an exam that included looking for scoliosis. The state used to ask for this info to be reported. It was stopped around 2008. Doctors now do the check in a school physical.

Do all children have the fall physical or is it done primarily for kids involved in sports? If that is the case a lot of children are left out. And a large number of our parents are not aware of any part of scoliosis.

So here we are! I am asking that anyone who reads this will pass it on. Pass on by the people reading this to parents. We need grandparents, aunts and uncles, family friends, teachers and on and on to pass the word along.

I have knowledge on this only because my granddaughter was found to have the curvature of the spine at 13 years old. We found out due to a friend of my daughter’s noticing how Tristin had a pretty little waist on the right side and down the left it was straight.

First visit to the doc he knew what it was and referred her to a specialist. There are varying degrees to this problem. Tristin’s required surgery, a seven-inch steel rod and six screws. She wore a turtle shell brace and 12 years later she’s walking straight and tall.

A grandson had scoliosis and Mark was only required to wear a brace for a few months and he is doing fine.

However, I have heard from two women who were not treated for this problem. I have to hope that maybe when theirs was discovered not as much was known about scoliosis.

There is one thing I would like to bring up is most of the people were told that scoliosis doesn’t cause pain. You don’t have to talk with many people before you would argue, there is pain.

This is a column with casual references to scoliosis. I am not a medical person. My information came from the grandkids’ experiences. I have spoken to a couple of doctors and nurses.

Please check the information and act accordingly. I’m wishing you all the best.

In the meantime I’m curious about what we’ll get into next! Thanks for reading, please pass it on. Contact me at sub: Scoliosis Again.

PLATTER PERSPECTIVE: An excursion to Orono

Peter Catesby  Peter Cates

An excursion to Orono.

On October 29, I made an otherwise rare as hen’s teeth, overnight trip to the U. of Maine’s Minsky Hall to hear a concert by the University Orchestra under its music director, Ana­tole Wieck. The program began with a fanfare performed from the back of the hall by the orchestra’s brass section, who then joined their colleagues for the music of Cesar Franck (1822-1890), Modeste Moussorgsky (1839-1881), and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791).

Anatole Kieck

Anatole Wieck
University of Maine Orchestra music director

Franck’s Symphony in D is a piece that listeners either love, as I do, or detest. It was among the handful of compositions that have continued to be performed and recorded with great frequency, they being the Symphonic Variations for Piano and Orchestra; the orchestral tone poems Psyche and Eros, and Chasseur Maudit; and Prelude, Chorale and Fugue for solo piano. Only the first and third movements were performed because the second had a lot of notes for the harp, which the orchestra lacks (A pianist seated behind the orchestra very skillfully simulated the sound of a harp in its shorter passages, located in the concluding movement and the Moussorgsky Night on Bald Mountain coming afterwards.).

The evening being October 29, Bald Mountain was a most apropo display piece. Its wild dance of demons, goblins and all other Stephen Kingish apparitions that go bump in the night, followed by early morning church bells halting and sending these furies back to where they came from, should be remembered by fans of Disney’s Fantasia. At least this performance utilized the conclusion of Moussorgsky, posthumously edited by his friend, Rimsky-Korsakov, instead of the Schubert Ave Maria that Leopold Stokowski tackily tacked on in the film.

Mozart’s very lovely Concerto for Four Hands, K. 365, received a bracing performance from Gena Raps and her colleague, Kenneth Cooper. Ms. Raps presently teaches at New York City’s Mannes School, part of the New School; has participated at a summer music festival in Winter Harbor; recorded for Naxos, Arabesque and other labels; and studied, performed and recorded with the late, great Artur Balsam. Mr. Cooper is a noted harpsichordist, as well as pianist, who has recorded for more labels than one could shake a stick at; and a noted writer, scholar, editor and gifted re-constructionist, who recently completed a Debussy Sonata, left unfinished at the composer’s death in 1918 and due for recording.

The Orchestra played with roaring enthusiasm and eloquence, coloristic detail and nuance and are a credit to the university. The 160-mile round trip through rain and sunshine; the interesting drive through such previously unseen towns as Veazie, Old Town and Milford, where I stayed in a comfortable kitchenette at the Milford Motel on the River; the partying students engulfing the streets with boisterous, smiling good cheer; and the two fire salami sandwiches I bought at Ledbetter’s – easily the best sandwich I have tasted in years from anywhere, added up to a very good weekend.

Reader challenge: Can you identify cast of Erskine production?


According to China resident Lee Austin, who provided this photo to The Town Line, this is the cast of the 38th senior play at Erskine Academy, in South China. Some of those mentioned in the photo are Ken Morton, Stella Glidden, Hamilton Farrington, Preston Mosher, John Redman and Shirley Millett. Can anyone identify everyone in this photo, in order of their seating arrangement?

We’d like to feature stories about you, your neighborhood, schools, events and places you remember in Maine from the 1960s or before. Photos, too.
Send your story, with name, phone, or email, to or P.O. Box 89 Jonesbrook Crossing, So. China, ME 04358. FMI: 445-2234.

IF WALLS COULD TALK, Week of November 24, 2016

by Katie Ouilette

WALLS, have I goofed? Yes, I know, faithful readers, that November 24 is Thanksgiving Day and our, also, very faithful circulation folks will be sharing that very special day with their families. In fact, since we will be celebrating Thanksgiving Day, what better time to thank everyone involved with getting The Town Line to each faithful reader.

And WALLS, you found a special bit of history for our faithful readers! You found two articles that were printed in the ‘long ago’ Skowhegan Somerset Reporter, dated Thursday, December 8, 1988!

One of the columns was written by our U.S. Senator George Mitchell. It surely would be appropriate to let our faithful readers know that Senator Mitchell was born, grew up on Front Street, in Waterville, and attended Colby College, but, especially, since we have just lived through a long and what seemed like it-would-never-end election, you certainly have chosen Senator Mitchelll’s perfect heading which was “Impact of Election Has Yet to be Felt.” That was written in 1988 and that still stands true, faithful readers.

Just below Senator Mitchell’s ‘Guest Column’ is a ‘Letter to the Editor’ about Lydia Child. Yes, you are wondering ‘who’? Well, certainly, you have sung Over the River and Through the Woods, around Thanksgiving time and when you were a very young student in school. Well, this letter was written by ‘someone you still read, but in The Town Line.’

Katie writes that when she and her late husband, Joe Denis (also a Colby grad and from Waterville, and Joe’s Grammy and Grampy Denis lived next door to the Mitchell family), moved to Sudbury, Massachusetts, they were house hunting with their Realtor. In the process, they passed a large Colonial, which the realtor pointed out as the Child’s house. Lydia must have written the song and poem as she remembered her Thanksgiving as a child.

Lydia’s grandmother lived in Concord, Massachusetts, and, sure enough, just passed the Child’s house was a road and a four-arch bridge which led to Grandma’s and Over the River and Through the Woods, on that special day, dinner was waiting and Lydia closed the song with “Hoorah for the pumpkin pie!”

WALLS is sorry, folks. Way back in 1988 and before, folks in Norridgewock thought that Lydia must have been writing about the

Kennebec River, in Maine, but not so! In fact, people tried and tried to figure how the Kennebec River could have been ‘the river’ and which road could have played out in Lydia’s memory. What’s more, Lydia’s family made the trip to her grandmother’s house by horse and sleigh!

Oh, WALLS, aren’t you glad that the Childs moved to Norridgewock and you could tell folks to be happy with song?
Well, the Denis family took the trip from Waverly to Concord every year for three years. Yes, singing the song! Why? Because that made the Thanksgiving ‘carol’ more meaningful as we drove to our own grandma’s house in Skowhegan.

Now, we sing the song that Lydia Child wrote as we sit around grandson Leigh and granddaughter Samantha Paine’s table for Thanksgiving dinner in Canaan. All the while, great-grandchildren Reese and Owen are trying to learn a bit of local history in song.

Creativity flourishes at River Roads Gallery

by Maria Landry

When River Roads Artisans Gallery moved from North Avenue to its current location at 75 Water Street in Skowhegan, the 12 artists involved weren’t sure if they’d last six months downtown. Now, seven years later, the gallery is thriving with 27 members.

“The move down here for us was fabulous—as was the support from all the downtown store owners,” said Chris Sumberg, a former gallery member who oversees the management of River Roads.

What started as a typical one-owner store has been for the past seven years a co-op in which members pay a monthly fee to have their artwork sold in the gallery and work together to keep the business going.

“When we made the move downtown we decided to go as a co-op, and it’s been working wonderfully,” Sumberg said. “We pay the bills together, we volunteer our time to work in the store. It’s just been really easy.”

With 27 members, the gallery is replete with a variety of handmade artworks, including pottery, paintings, jewelry, woodwork, fabric arts, rock art, blown glass, stained glass, and more.page1pict7

“We could probably take a couple more artists, but we’re getting tighter and tighter,” Sumberg said, gesturing to the gallery. “We may expand into the back room. That’s an option.”

While some members hail from as far as Jackman and South Portland, most are local, crafting their wares in area towns including Skowhegan, Athens, Solon, Cornville, Oakland, Fairfield, Norridgewock, Mercer, and Canaan.

River Roads is open May through December, and there is usually at least one new artist every season.

“The reason we close for four months is that these artists need to create,” Sumberg said. River Roads’ members will soon be sharing their creativity at two upcoming events during the holiday season.

River Roads Window DisplayFourth Annual Great Art Giveaway , Saturday, Nov. 26, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

For Small Business Saturday, River Roads artisans donate an item (or two or three) to a prize table. Customers who make a minimum purchase on that day have the opportunity to draw a ticket for a chance to win a free piece of artwork of their choice from the prize table.

“It’s a very good chance they’ll get a prize,” Sumberg said. Free Gift Wrapping, Saturday, Dec. 10, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of November 24, 2016

Solon and Beyondby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

The first Quarter Honor Roll students at Solon Elementary School receiving all A’S are Jayden Cates, Cooper Dellarma, Gavyn Easler, Sascha Evans, Courtney Grunder, Summer Lindblom, Aiden McLaughlin, Macie Plourde, Desmond Robinson, William Rogers, Aaron Soosman and Hailey Wyman. All A’s & B’S Emily Baker, Karen Baker, Tehya Caplin, Sarah Craig, Caden Fitton, Riley Graham, Reid Golden, Sherrill Hall, Zachary Hemond, Nevaeh Holmes, Cody James, William Lawrence, Madyson McKenney, Ciara Myers-Sleeper, Abigail Parent, Cailin Priest, Mylee Roderrick, THomas Roderick, Alyssa Schinzel, Katelynn, Brooks Sousa, Fisher Tewksbury, Lucas Vicneire and Dystany Young.

On September 21, Solon Elementary School held a Space Night and Open House for the PreK-5 students and their families. The teachers were pleased to have 190 people in attendance, which represented 78 percent of the families.

Families visited classrooms, shopped at the PTO Book Fair, enjoyed refreshments, and learned more about space. The highlight of the evening was a planetarium show called “The Wonderful Sky” in an inflatable indoor dome brought by Mr. John Meader from Northern Stars Planetarium in Fairfield.

Students had a chance to win space-related door prizes, and all students left with a goodie bag.

The event was funded by a grant from the MELMAC Foundation.

On September 29 and October 20, Solon students and staff participated in the Walking School Bus Program. This activity is part of the school wellness plan.

Students, staff, and parents met at the Solon Thrift Shop each of those mornings and walked to school to promote exercise and fitness. When they got to school, the cook, Mrs. Lawrence served everyone breakfast.

The 6th annual Christmas Program and Sunday School Pageant at the North Anson Congregational Church will be held on Sunday, November 27 at 4 .pm. This program includes music, readings, skits and the singing of carols. I may be a bit biased, (my daughter Mary is the head of the Sunday School), and in my opinion this annual event is always very inspiring and gets one in the spirit of Christmas. Hope to see you there.

Was very happy to receive an e-mail from Tim and Pat at the New Hope E. F. Church, in Solon, with updates on the women’s shelter etc. “The shelter has been blessed to receive several grants that have enabled us to purchase two storage sheds (each 10′ x 20′) and a generator, and also pay for the construction of a permanent entryway. In addition, a rescue mission in Bangor, has closed its thrift store and has given this building to us to do with as the Lord leads. What a blessing!

They have re furbished the original women’s shelter (the north wing of the church), making the upstairs into a youth center where teens can gather to enjoy fun, fellowship, and a time of Bible study on Friday evenings.

Several new women and children have recently been welcomed into the women’s shelter, while several others have moved into apartments of their own.

Besides Tim’s many pastoral duties and responsibilities as board president of the women’s shelter, he has taken on the role of youth leader and Pat has been hired by the church to be Tim’s secretary.

The Solon Congregational Church will host an annual Christmas Fund raiser event on Saturday, December 3, at 6 p.m. Entertainment will be the Liberty String Band. Refreshments will be served following the program. Admission will be by donation.

We had our annual Rogers’ Thanksgiving day on the Sunday before the actual day, at the home of Peter and Sherry Rogers, on the River Road. with 22 in attendance. As always, it was extra special, one reason being, Mark and Karen always drive up from Florida to share the love and great food. At first this occasion started with a long table in the living room, but with the young ones growing up and adding wives, it is now held in the garage. It never ceases to amaze me how they turn the garage into such a warm and welcoming place for the food and fun of the day, the game following the meal yesterday was lots of fun, as always!

Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day as well, and Percy’s memoir says it all… Life’s greatest celebrations are born of the heart.”

Sumo wrestling champions

Maine Skirmish Grappling Tournament Sumo wrestling champions

Maine Skirmish Grappling Tournament Sumo wrestling champions, held recently in Winslow.
Photo by Central Maine Photography

Local students achieve dean’s list at UMF

The following area students have achieved dean’s list status at the University of Maine at Farmington, in Farmington.

Chelsea: Kassidy Frost and Tricia Tzikas; Fairfield: Katlyn Champagne, Holden Cookson, Katie LeBlanc, Hannah Tompkins and Lauren Wadleigh. Freedom: Christina Hall; Jefferson: Allison Fortin and Bridget Humphrey; Liberty: David Mallow; Madison: Alexis Lanctot and Rebekah Powell; Oakland: Mara Balboni, Natalie Corrigan, Tyler Creasy, Harley Davis, Derek Guerette and Christopher Knight; Palermo: Nicole Glidden; Sidney: Spencer DeWitt, Chelsey Oliver and Shawna Oliver; South China: Tyler Belanger, Marissa Chamberlain, Gage Currie, Simon Rollins and Rebecca-Ann Severy; Unity: Donna Chason; Vassalboro: Brianna Benevento, Nathan Bowring, Sean Cabaniss, Benjamin Cloutier, Alicia Stafford and Abbe Waceken; Washington: Olivia Vanner; Waterville: Molly Brown, Avery Isbell, Christa Jordan, Mattie Lajoie, Jacob Montgomery, Kara Patenaude, Sarah Ringer, Lydia Roy and Jinni-Mae Workman; Whitefield: Jordan Bailey, Katherine Newcombe and Emily Russell; Windsor: Victoria Condon; Winslow: Morgan Clark, Kayla Davis, Megan Denis, Mariah Greatorex, Sara Jackson, Stephanie Michaud and Christina Taylor.

Board recommends using TIF money on revolving loan fund

by Mary Grow

China’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Committee has voted to recommend using part of TIF funds to set up a revolving loan fund to provide additional money for new or expanding local businesses, to supplement bank loans and other funding sources. The vote at the committee’s Nov. 21 meeting was 7 to 3, with David Cotta opposed and Frank Soares and Jim Wilkinson abstaining.

Committee members then decided to spend about half of their Dec. 5 meeting working out details of their proposal, like how much money will be involved, before forwarding the recommendation to China selectmen.

They plan to recommend that administration be entrusted to the Kennebec Valley Council of Governments (KVCOG). KVCOG Executive Director Rosie Vanadestine has attended meetings to advise committee members. TIF Committee Chairman Amber McAllister proposed inviting her to the Dec. 5 meeting; no decision was made.

The meeting opened with a discussion of access to China Lake with resident Janet Preston, who served on the earlier Lake Access Committee. Voters rejected the committee’s plan to buy the former Candlewood Camps on the east shore of China Lake, near the north end.

In July, Preston sent the TIF Committee a letter about a property for sale on the west side of the lake. Having received no response, she came to the Nov. 21 meeting, where McAllister and other committee members agreed lake access was one possible use of TIF funds.

Soares said the Four Seasons Club, of which he is president, would be open to an arrangement to turn its beach on the east shore of China Lake, almost opposite the town office, into a town beach. Committee members said they ought to inspect both properties, but set no date for an inspection. After another discussion of the proposed improvements to the boat launch and fishing area at the head of the lake, committee members asked engineer Mark McCluskey of A. E. Hodsdon for revised cost estimates for the work. McCluskey and committee representatives met with state Department of Environmental Protection staff to get information on permit requirements.

McCluskey thinks it is possible to improve the boat launch, the parking area boaters use and perhaps the bridge that crosses the inlet from the Muldoon into the lake without the amendments to China’s Land Development Code that voters rejected Nov. 8. He plans to consult with Codes Officer Paul Mitnik.

Acting on another Nov. 8 local referendum question, voters approved spending up to $50,000 to improve the recreational trail along the Central Maine Power Company line that runs north-south through China. Soares said the first part of the work is about to be bid out.

Taxes on the expanded CMP line are the source of TIF money. Building it damaged the trail.

The agenda for the Nov. 21 TIF meeting called for scheduling an open house in the FairPoint building on Route 3, which committee members have talked about recommending the town buy, and scheduling a public information session to let

China residents comment on the various projects the committee is considering. Both ideas were discussed; no action was taken on either.