EVENTS: ShineOnCass Animal Baby Shower & PJ Party planned May 7, in Albion

The annual, free event is held in memory of Cassidy Charette, a longtime summer camper at Hart-to-Hart Farm. Pre-registration is required to attend one of two sessions, which is limited to 80 children per session. Visit or to register. (photo by Monica Charette)

Children dressed in their pajamas will welcome baby lambs, goats, calves and other newborn animals also wearing pajamas, on May 7, at the ShineOnCass Animal Baby Shower & PJ Party, at Hart-to-Hart Farm & Education Center, in Albion.

Linnea Burke-Maya snuggles a chicken at Hart-to-Hart Farm, in Albion, as part of last year’s ShineOnCass Animal Baby Shower & PJ Party. The 2023 event will be held May 7. Children dressed in their pajamas will welcome baby lambs, goats, calves, and other newborn animals also wearing pajamas! (photos by Monica Charette)

The annual event features educational stations that include learning how to milk a cow, fetching eggs from the chicken coop, spinning lamb’s wool, and participation in goat yoga! Children will be able to hold, and have photos taken with, the newborn baby animals.

Hart-to-Hart Farm & Education Center is a family-owned and operated organic dairy farm that offers a variety of educational programs for children, adults and families. The ShineOnCass Animal Baby Shower is held each year in honor of Cassidy Charette, an Oakland teen who died in a hayride accident in 2014, and was a summer camper at Hart-to-Hart Farm.

Families attending the free event are asked to bring pet food and items to donate to Humane Society Waterville Area in memory of Cassidy, who was a longtime shelter volunteer.

There will be two sessions offered, 10 to 11:30 a.m., and 12:30 to 2 p.m., with limited capacity of 80 children per session. Pre-registration is required at or For more information, email










Area residents named to dean’s list at UNE

Photo credit: University of New England Facebook page

The following students have been named to the dean’s list for the 2022 fall semester at the University of New England, in Biddeford.

Albion: Emma McPherson and Olivia McPherson.

Augusta: Valerie Capeless, Zinaida Gregor, Jessica Guerrette, Brooklynn Merrill, Daraun White and Julia White.

Benton: Jessica Andrews.

Fairfield: Caitlyn Mayo.

Jefferson: Mallory Audette.

Oakland: Kierra Bumford and Francesca Caccamo.

Palermo: Peyton Sammons.

Sidney: Sarah Kohl.

Skowhegan: Wylie Bedard, Elizabeth Connelly, Ashley Mason and Dawson Turcotte.

South China: Richard Winn.

Vassalboro: Adam Ochs.

Waterville: Mohammad Atif-Sheikh, Elias Nawfel, Grace Petley and Evan Watts.

Winslow: Juliann Lapierre, Kristopher Loubier and Justice Picard.

SNHU announces summer ‘22 president’s list

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), in Manchester, New Hampshire, congratulates the following students on being named to the Summer 2022 President’s List. The summer terms run from May to August.

Kate Murphy and Justin Drescher, both of Augusta, Matthew Bandyk, of Jefferson, Merval Porter, of Palermo, Lisa Johnson, of South China, Lacey York, of China, Lilly Reardon, of Benton, Jeffery Wheeler and Brendon Peace, both of Waterville, Talon Mosher, of Winslow, Jacob Colson, of Albion, Carrie Stackpole, of Clinton, Stormy Wentworth, of Fairfield, Glenn Rich and Mariah Rich, both of Madison, and Kassandra Grant, of Vassalboro.

Local Town Meetings Schedule for 2023

Town meetings 2023


Municipal Election
Friday, March 17, 2 p.m.
Besse Building
Town meeting
Sat., March 18, 10 a.m.
Albion Elementary School


Town meeting (election format)
Tues., June 13
Use Alder Park entrance


Mon., May 8
Fairfield Community Center


Town meeting Fri., March 11, 9:00 a.m.
Palermo Consolidated School


Town meeting
Mon., June 5, 6:30 p.m.
Tues., June 13
Vassalboro Community School


Municipal Election
Tues., June 13, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Town meeting
Wed., June 14, 6:30 p.m.
Windsor School gym

*   *   *

To be included in this list, visit our Contact Us page or send an email to The Town Line at

ALBION/PALERMO: HealthReach welcomes Melanie Morin

Melanie Morin

This March, staff at Lovejoy Health Center and Sheepscot Valley Health Center will be welcoming Melanie Morin, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, to the team.

Melanie earned her master’s degree in psychiatric nursing from Husson University, of Bangor. Previously, she earned her Bach­elor’s de­gree in Nursing from the University of Maine at Fort Kent, and her Associate’s degree in Nursing from Kennebec Valley Community College. Melanie brings a wealth of experience in whole-person (holistic) patient care, and specifically in evidence-based treatments for mental illness.

Melanie shares, “My philosophy of care is to treat patients with respect and dignity – providing care for patients in the same way as I would want to be treated if I was in a similar situation. It is my belief that this way of caring for patients creates an environment of attention that is more conducive to healing. Focusing on the whole person means caring for their physical wellbeing as well as considering their emotional and spiritual wellbeing. Each of these aspects is integral to the whole person.” Melanie joins physicians Dean Chamberlain, Ann Schwink and Kathryn Wistar; physician assistants Nichole Johnston, Anna Simmler, Craig Urwin, and Zachary Wissman; nurse practitioner Keiko Kurita; licensed clinical social worker Deborah Daigle; and licensed clinical professional counselor Ashley Rancourt. Our clinicians offer medical and behavioral health services for patients of all ages.

EVENTS: Community Blue Christmas ceremony shines a light on winter solstice

by Monica Charette

The ShineOnCass Foundation will host its Second Annual Blue Christmas Ceremony for grieving families and friends, and those who support them, Wednesday, December 21, at 6 p.m., on the Winter Solstice – the longest and darkest night of the year. Light the Night will feature music, speakers, along with a reading of submitted names of loved ones’ lost and the lighting of memorial blue candles.

Blue Christmas ceremonies are held around the world in acknowledgement that the holiday season can be difficult for many who are grieving.

“This time of year can be so challenging when celebrations of peace and joy contrast sharply with the sadness and loneliness that come with loss,” said Monica Charette, founder and executive director of the ShineOnCass Foundation. “Our hope is to bring people together, both those who are grieving, and people who support them, to offer a comforting space where everyone feels less alone.”

In addition to the blue light ceremony, the evening will also feature music by local musician Will Pherson and the return of award-winning country recording artist Joan Kennedy, who will perform “Candle in the Window.”

Charette said the idea to host a community Blue Christmas Ceremony came from a gathering organized by her friends after the passing of her 17-year-old daughter Cassidy Charette, eight years ago. Cass, for whom the ShineOnCass Foundation was created to honor, was a Messalonskee High School student and longtime community volunteer, who died in a tragic hayride accident on October 11, 2014.

“It was comforting when people came together to support our family, acknowledge our grief, and stand beside us during a very dark and lonely time,” Charette said. “We want to continue to share that experience with others in our community.”

Anyone in the community can participate by sharing their loved ones’ names being remembered, and receiving a blue candle to light at the ceremony. People are also welcome to attend in silent remembrance and offer support to others. To complete the online form, visit Light the Night: Blue Christmas on the Foundation’s website Deadline to submit is Monday, December 19. In case of inclement weather, Blue Christmas will be held one day later, on December 22. For more information, email or call 207-314-6996.

14-year-old Albion girl achieves hunting grand slam

At the age of 8, Emily Peirce, of Albion, took an interest in hunting. Since then, she has harvested six deer prior to this year. She has applied for a moose permit in years passed and was lucky enough to be drawn this year. Since being drawn for her moose permit Emily decided to try for the hunting Grand Slam.

To start the season, Emily shot her bear in Upper Enchanted Township on September 16, weighing 87 pounds. September 21 she harvested two turkeys on family land in Albion. On October 15, the last day of her permit, she was able to shoot her moose in Zone 4 weighing 769 pounds with a 50 ¼-inch spread. With determination and support, she shot a 4-point buck weighing 156 pounds on November 10, to complete her Grand Slam and her personal goal for the 2022 season.

Her friends and family are incredibly proud, and Emily is overjoyed with her success.

Happy birthday to a dear friend

Rena Harding, center

Rena Harding, of Albion, spent her 100th birthday on October 29, 2022, at home with family and friends.

Rena is the daughter of the late Lesley and Gertrude Bailey, of Palermo. Rena’s last sister, Natalie Coro, of Waterville, attended her party.

She has four children, Eugene, Athene, Sheldon and Neil as well as many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Karen Noyes Moody made a beautiful birthday cake.

I have spent many good times at Rena’s home and I was treated so nicely; she calls me her “little girl”. She worked very hard through the years and I am so happy that she had a nice birthday. She deserves it.

I love you and wish you more birthdays.

Ruth Fuller
China Village

HealthReach welcomes Nancy Johnson

Nancy Johnson

This September, staff at HealthReach Community Health Centers welcomed Nancy Johnson, Connector. The two practices Nancy joins include Belgrade Regional Health Center, and Lovejoy Health Center, in Albion. Nancy looks forward to helping patients access important services, such as affordable healthcare, health insurance, and other social and support services.

Nancy obtained her bachelor’s degree in secondary education, language arts from the University of Maine at Farmington. She also has a master’s degree in literacy education from the University of Maine at Orono. In 2021, Nancy served as a Patient Services Representative for MaineGeneral Medical Center, where she provided excellent customer service to patients and determined urgency levels for medical referrals. Nancy previously worked as a certified title I literacy teacher for the Augusta school department for over a decade. She also has experience in helping people with Medicare Part D matters.

Nancy joins HealthReach’s dedicated Connector Team – Tina DeRaps, LSW; Chenoa Jackson, LSW; and Courtney Koczera. Connectors provide free and valuable services to help with the high cost of healthcare. Connectors are here to help patients navigate a variety of resources, including MaineCare (Medicaid), Hospital Free Care, Supplemental Nutritional Aid Program (SNAP, or “food stamps”), reduced-cost prescription medications through the Patient Assistance Program, and our HealthReach Affordable Care Program (“Sliding Fee”). HealthReach Connectors can also connect you to other helpful resources in your local community.

Lovejoy Health Center welcomes Ashley Rancourt

Ashley Rancourt

This October, staff at Lovejoy Health Center, in Albion, are pleased to welcome Ashley Rancourt, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. Ashley has experience in both inpatient and outpatient counseling environments.

Ashley earned her master’s degree in Clinical Counseling from the University of Southern Maine. Previously, she earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Maine at Farmington. Ashley comes from years of experience providing treatment to adolescent patients through her work in local schools. Ashley brings background in both one-on-one and group therapy treatments. Ashley will be a great addition for the Albion area and surrounding communities.

Ashley joins physician Dean Chamberlain; physician assistant Nikki Kimborowicz; family nurse practitioner Keiko Kurita; and licensed clinical social worker Deb Daigle. Our clinicians offer medical and behavioral health services for patients of all ages. Residents of Albion and nearby towns have enjoyed quality care at Lovejoy Health Center since its founding in 1978.