China to hold WindowDressers workshop this fall

Volunteers prepare window inserts at the 2019 WindowDressers workshop, two years ago, in Vassalboro. (photo courtesy of Vassalboro Historical Society)

by Eric W. Austin

The China for a Lifetime Committee is busy planning for a WindowDressers workshop that will take place this November 3 – 7. The initiative is a volunteer-led, “barn-raising” effort to construct low-cost “window inserts” to reduce residential energy bills.

The window inserts are constructed of pine wood frames, covered in thin plastic film and can usually be ordered in natural wood or painted white, however, because of pandemic-related difficulties in the lumber industry, they may not be available in white this year. (Please inquire at the time you place your order.) There is a maximum order limit of 10 frames, and no minimum. Orders are open to residents in China, Vassalboro, Palermo, Albion and Windsor.

The price of the window inserts will vary depending on the size of the frame requested, but generally range from $30-$70 per frame for natural pine, with an additional $5-$10 if painted white. There is financial help available for those who qualify.

The committee is working with the statewide WindowDressers organization, described on their website as a “volunteer-driven non-profit organization dedicated to helping Maine residents reduce heating costs, fossil fuel consumption, and CO-2 emissions by lowering the amount of heat loss through windows.” WindowDressers is based out of Rockland.

The China for a Lifetime Committee, a local group which supports community initiatives aimed at improving the quality of life for residents, has been meeting for several months to discuss having a WindowDressers workshop in China this fall. Vassalboro hosted a workshop two years ago, and the China for a Lifetime Committee had discussed organizing a workshop in China last year before plans were scrapped because of the pandemic.

As the workshop will take place during the first week of November, orders should be placed no later than October 1. Committee volunteers will need to visit your home to take window measurements which will then be sent to the WindowDressers organization, who will cut the wood for the frames. All volunteers doing the measuring will be vaccinated for COVID-19, and can also wear a mask if the homeowner requests. Measurers need to complete their task and submit data to WindowDressers by mid-October, so to avoid “crunch time”, please make sure to get your order in and set up a measuring appointment as soon as possible.

There is a great need for local community volunteers in order to make this a successful WindowDressers workshop. It is requested that anyone ordering frames also sign up for a four-hour shift on one of the workshop days. The committee is also looking for anyone willing to supply food to the teams working during the workshop.

To submit an order for window inserts, or to volunteer, please call the China town office at 445-2014, send an email to the China for a Lifetime Committee at, or visit the WindowDressers website and fill out the form located at

For more information about the China for a Lifetime Committee, please visit their website at

Vassalboro Historical Society to hold local art contest

Vassalboro Historical Society

The Vassalboro Historical Society is requesting your original artwork for use as the Society’s thank you notes and to have available for sale at the Society. Entries must be received by August 31, 2021.

The artwork (drawn, painted, or photographed) must feature historical buildings and sites of Vassalboro (stop by the museum for ideas – we have lots of photographs) which are suitable for printing on 4 1⁄4” x 5 1⁄2” note cards.

Four entries will be selected and artists will receive: $100 for first place; $75 for second place; $50 for third place; and $25 for fourth place.


Send your artwork or photograph to ART CONTEST @ VHS, PO Box #13, North Vassalboro, ME 04962, or by email to:

If you would like your artwork returned, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Mid-Maine Chamber golf fundraiser draws many players

First place gross, Damon’s Beverage, Jeff Damon, Mark McGowan, Flint Collier and Luke Collier. (contributed photo)

Central Maine’s most prize-laden golf tournament fundraiser was held under clear skies on Monday, June 21, at Natanis Golf Course, in Vassalboro. Thirty-five teams took part in the shotgun start scramble.

Nearly 50 businesses provided sponsorships or in-kind donations for the tournament.

“We were thrilled with the participation in this year’s event once again – and had a waiting list of teams wishing to participate,” said Kim Lindlof, president & CEO of Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce. “We were also happy that the weather cooperated, with a beautiful Chamber of Commerce day of sunshine and an enjoyable day for all involved.”

Prize Winners:

Summer Sizzler BBQ Package: Gary Levesque, New York Life.

50/50 Winner: Andrew Dailey, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust.

First Place Gross Team Score: Damon’s Beverage—Jeff Damon, Mark McGowan, Flint Collier, Luke Collier.

Second Place Gross Team Score: Pine Tree Cellular—Marc Girard, Glen Pound, Tim Merwin, Trevor Olivadoti.

Third Place Gross Team Score: Skowhegan Savings—Brian Fitzpatrick, Sam Hight, Adam Orser, Lou Hight.

First Place Net Team Score: Bar Harbor Bank & Trust—Jennifer Seekins, Jeff Charland, Mark Breton, Andrew Dailey.

Second Place Net Team Score: Maine State Credit Union-Team 2—Matt Doane, Michelle Martin, Keith McPherson.

Third Place Net Team Score: Pepsi Co.—Tony Dessent, Mark Watson, Roger Williams, Chris Low.

Longest Drive—Hole #15: Male: Adam Orser—Skowhegan Savings; Female: Theresa Thompson—Standard Waterproofing.

Closest to the Pin—Hole #4 and #7: Steve Whitney—Cornerstone Insurance.

Closest to the Pin—Hole #10: Jeff Meinhert—Paul White Co.

Closest to the Pin—Hole #13: Trevor Fogarty—AAA Northern New England.

Highest Team Score: Standard Waterproofing—Isaac Thompson, Theresa Thompson, Tom Michaud, Marie Michaud.

  Chairman of the Chamber Golf Classic Committee, Rick Whalen added, “We would like to thank all of the area businesses for their participation – whether with posting a team, providing volunteers or in-kind donations, or being a sponsor. Your support makes this a successful fundraiser.”

The Mid-Maine Chamber Golf Classic is made possible by major sponsors Central Maine Power and Maine State Credit Union and multiple additional sponsors.

First place net, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, Jennifer Seekins, Jeff Charland, Mark Breton and Andrew Dailey. Names not necessarily in order. (contributed photo)

Vassalboro selectmen’s meeting rescheduled

by Mary Grow

The Vassalboro selectmen’s July meeting has been rescheduled to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 14. It had been planned for July 15.

art + gender exhibit to begin August 6, 2021

photo credit: City of Waterville

The Harlow invites artists to submit artwork to art + gender, a juried exhibition that explores the relationship between gender and society. art + gender will be on view August 6 – September 11, 2021, at 100 Water Street, in Hallowell, with an opening reception on Friday, August 6, from 4 – 6 p.m., in conjunction with Hallowell Pride. art + gender is open to all New England based artists. The deadline for submissions is 11:59 p.m., on July 1, 2021.

Original fine art in any media may be submitted. For complete details please visit:

Hospice Summer Bereavement Workshop series to start July 13

Hospice Volunteers of Waterville Area will offer, Is this Normal? What to Expect when Grieving, the first of a series of workshops for those grieving the death of a loved one. The workshop will be held Tuesday evening, July 13, from 6 – 8 p.m. Almost everyone asks themselves somewhere along the way, “Is this Normal?” This is a discussion workshop for anyone at any point in their grief journey, to talk about what has worked and hasn’t worked and what are some ideas for coping looking ahead. This is not a presentation; we will learn from each other.

This workshop will be led by Mark Jose, LCSW, who has had over 20 years of experience as a Hospice Social Worker, Bereavement Counselor and HVWA Volunteer.

All workshops will be held in the Hospice Community Center Healing Garden at 304 Main Street in Waterville and led by community professionals and trained hospice bereavement volunteers. Pre-registration is required. Please call or email Jillian Roy, Bereavement Coordinator, for more information or to register. Phone: 873-3615; E-mail:

Palermo Days 2021 canceled

Photo from Palermo Days 2019. (photo courtesy of Pat Clark)

Sadly, Palermo Days will not take place this August. However, plans have already begun for extra special events next year during the second weekend of August 2022.

Vassalboro planners to meet July 6

by Mary Grow

Vassalboro Planning Board members are scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 6, at the Vassalboro town office, with a single item on their agenda.

Peter Reny has applied to place a mobile home on the gravel pad that was the site of a former mobile home at 1100 Main Street in North Vassalboro, in the Outlet Stream shoreland zone. Reny received a permit for a new mobile home in August 2017 that has expired, Codes Officer Paul Mitnik said.

China planners to hold special workshop

by Mary Grow

The China Planning Board will hold a special workshop meeting at 6:30 p.m. Monday, June 28, to continue editing the draft Solar Energy Systems Ordinance. The meeting will be in person in the portable building behind the town office, with virtual participation also available.

China Four Seasons Club: Non-profit Spotlight

Four Seasons clubhouse

Their Mission, Their Goals

by Steve Ball

Founded in 1970, the China Four Seasons Club is a growing nonprofit club organized to bring together enthusiasts of outdoor activities of all sorts. The club was organized after a merger between the China Lake Association and the China Regional Snowmobilers organizations. While most of their activities revolve around snowmobiling and ATV riding, the club, in fact, offers more to the community and its families.

In speaking with Tom Rumpf, club president, and Gail Tibbetts, past club president, it is obvious they see the club as a focal point for China and its surrounding towns’ people to get outside and enjoy the local area.

“This is really a four seasons club with events for everyone,” Rumpf said. There’s obviously snowmobiling and ATV riding, but in addition, the club has tried to broaden the offerings of the club. Recently the Four Seasons Club partnered with the China Village Volunteer Fire Department to sponsor and manage the China Lake Annual Ice Fishing Derby.

The club’s work during the year involves managing 34 miles of snowmobile trails and 21 miles of ATV trails in the China Lake region. All of the manpower for trail maintenance, grooming and upkeep is done by volunteers. According to Rumpf, the trails managed by the club are very popular, attracting riders and enthusiasts from throughout the state and New England. It’s busy work of which the club is rightly proud.

It is the work on the trails that keeps the attention of most members. Aside from the cost of building bridges, clearing storm and wind damage, and running the grooming vehicles, Rumpf and his team spend a lot of time talking with landowners to gain approval for trail access. Additionally, Rumpf is in contact with the Maine State Department of Conservation to assure that all the trails are in compliance and ask for guidance on major repair work. “These trails,” Rumpf said, “are more than just for snowmobilers and ATV riders. They get used by horseback riders, bikers, hikers, snowshoers and cross country skiers.”

The club, according to Rumpf, is really there to serve both the membership, numbering approximately 200, and the community. This is seen in the varied activities the club either sponsors or is involved in with other organizations. Over the Christmas holiday season the club donated money for families in need and then sponsored a raffle for four decorated Christmas trees stocked with presents underneath. Rumpf and his team are also partnering to assist with promoting the China School Forest.

The clubhouse is located on seven acres along Lakeview Drive, across from the China Town Office, with a beach and lake access. There’s a kitchen and main hall that serves the social needs of the club and is available to anyone to rent for private functions. The beach is remarkable in its somewhat secluded and protected setting. In the summer, docks are laid out to provide for swimming, fishing and boating, and the area is set-up for picnicking. In fact, according to Gail Tibbetts, the beach is increasingly becoming a prime attraction for families.

It is apparent the club is striving for ways to better serve the community. “I would like to organize a winter carnival around the ice fishing derby, with different activities for children and non-fishermen,” said Rumpf. This might include sledding, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing.

The club would be a remarkable organization just because of its location and available space, but it’s the leaders and membership that are visibly shaping this nonprofit into a valuable community asset. It is apparent the China Lake community would be a much different place if not for the impact of the China Four Seasons Club.

The Town Line will continue with a series of articles on local nonprofit groups and their work in their respective communities. To include your group, contact The Town Line at