Covers towns roughly within 50 miles of Augusta.

Champions: 2018 Central Maine Eagles

Team members include, front row, from left to right, James Mayo, Dakota Peaslee, Dylan Grotton, Cole Roberts, Shaine Staples, Derick James, Colby Blay, Lucas Grotton and Anthony Sanborn. Back, Tanner Watson, Koby Brigman, Brian White, Jake Emond, Isiah Michaud, Don Resch, Aarick Staples, Hunter Johnson, Parker Reynolds and Dan Page. Head coach is Steven Hamil, and assistant coach is Brandon Metten. (Contributed photo)

The Central Maine Eagles won the championship, defeating the previously unbeaten Berlin Gladiators, 26-14, for the Maine Independent Football League title, on Saturday November 17, at Portsmouth High School, in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Mid-Maine Dolphins make a splash!

From left to right, Olivia Roy, Sarah McNeil, Emma Farnham and Elyse St. Pierre. (Contributed photo)

Saturday, October 27, opened the YMCA’s swim season with the “Spooktacular” swim meet held at the Penobscot Bay YMCA, in Rockport. Bolstered by new coaches filled with passion and high hopes, the Alfond Youth Center’s Mid-Maine Dolphins Swim Club flew off the starting blocks and into the water.

The Dolphins held a commanding presence with first place finishes in multiple individual events; including athletes: Jadyn Arnold (100 freestyle, 100 backstroke), Ebba Heaton-Jones (50 and 100 freestyle), Emma Farnham (100 backstroke), Leah Shoulta (100 backstroke), Edmond Couture (100 freestyle), Eric Booth (200 IM), and many more. Over half the team was within seconds of beating their personal best event times and a handful of swimmers succeeded in surpassing their previous bests. The team’s goal is to use this early momentum to rush toward the head of the pack this swim season. With the coaches’ teaching methods based on “Positive reinforcement and fun,” the club swimmers are ready to achieve that goal.

The Mid-Maine Dolphins are led by the coaching trio of new head coach Kyle Bauer, returning associate head coach Sara Rushton and new assistant coach Colin Vidas. The Mid-Maine Dolphins are still hosting tryouts; please contact the Alfond Youth Center (126 North St., Waterville, ME) at 207-873-0684 and visit online at www.clubayc.org to setup a time to meet with the MMD coaches.

Central Maine Pharmacy Wolfpack: On to the championship game

Front row, from left to right, Preston Roy, Brett Lawler, Colby Nassau, Vole Quirion, and Gaige Martin. Second row, Felix Chaka, Brad Bajpai, Jeremiah McKenzie and Branden Lewis. Third row, Jeremy Thompson, Braden Littlefield, Nash Cordon, Austin Rackliff, Connor Brown and Jaiden Berube. Coaches Joel Littlefield, Mike Corson, Barry Quirion, Chuck Roy, Nick Nadeau and Bill McKenzie. (Photo by Heather Giroux)

The Central Maine Pharmacy Wolfpack moved on to the championship game following a 7-2 season.

Ice Gladiators: Enjoying the clinic at Colby

Colby College’s men’s hockey team offered its annual Colby Clinic for area youth hockey players. This year 45 hard chargers on ice did various drills. (Photo by Sarah Fredette, Central Maine Photography staff)

Chase Lawler, Brandon Frowery and Peyton Gifford enjoyed themselves during the Colby College men’s hockey clinic recently. The players were drilled in skating, passing, shooting and the goalies were perfecting their skills. (Photo by Sarah Fredette, Central Maine Photography)

Sukeforth Family Festival of Trees scheduled

The Sukeforth Family Festival of Trees is scheduled for November 16 – 18, and 23 – 25. This year the event will be held in the old American Legion building, located at 21 College Avenue, in Waterville.

Hours for the festive event will be 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, November 18 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, November 25.

The annual event has become a must-do for many families in Waterville and the surrounding areas, as it showcases fully decorated, themed and lighted artificial Christmas trees on display throughout the event. The trees are accompanied by gifts, and everything is donated by local businesses and organizations.

Admission to the event is $2 for adults and no charge for children 12 and younger. The trees, including all decorations and gifts, will be raffled off at the end of the event. Raffle tickets cost 50¢ each and you do not need to be present to win.

For more information, please contact Annette Sukeforth Marin, at 313-3216 or annettejmarin@gmail.com.

Local youth waiting for Big Brothers and Big Sisters

Nine-year-old Briannah is patiently waiting for the news that she has a Big Sister. She’s anxious to talk with her new friend about her interest in geology, maybe find unique rocks together in the Skowhegan community where she lives, and is especially excited to share her love for animals. Her mom, a single parent, hopes a one-to-one relationship with a female role model will give her daughter self-confidence, raise her aspirations and set her on the path to success.

Briannah is among 25 youth facing adversity in Kennebec and Somerset counties currently waiting to be matched with positive, adult role models to serve as community-based mentors through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine. According to Gwendolyn Hudson, BBBSMM executive director, about 60 percent of those waiting are young boys.

“It is not uncommon that women tend to volunteer to mentor more often than their male counterparts,” Hudson said, citing national BBBS of America statistics, but said the agency hopes to change that trend by finding caring, compassionate males in the community ready to share a little bit of their time to help change the life of a child.

BBBSMM recently started a “Waiting Wednesday” social media post on their Facebook and Instagram platforms, highlighting youth waiting to be match with community mentors.

Big Brother Richard Behr and his Little Brother, Jaxen, have been meeting every week for more than four years. Jaxen, now a teenager, was nine years old when they first met, and unsure what it would be like to have a Big Brother. His mother said he had intense anxiety in new situations and as a working parent with other young children at home, she recognized he wasn’t getting the one-on-one time with her that he used to. He was interested in outdoor activities, but didn’t have anyone to go with him. She said she hoped having a mentor would help Jaxen increase his confidence and give him the motivation to try new things.

Today, the match between Richard and Jaxen has brought them together to hike, snowshoe, fish and take on fun building projects together.

Adults interested in learning more about becoming a community-based mentor should contact Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine by calling 207-370-1674 or emailing reneeigo@bbbsmidmaine.org. For more information about how you can change the life of a child through volunteering or supporting Big Brothers Big Sisters of Mid-Maine, visit bbbsmidmaine.org.

Square dancers hold summer outing

Pictured above are Cindy Fairfield and Bob Brown, of Newport, in back are Larry and Kathleen Hillman, of Fairfield, and Margaret and Bruce Carter, of Ellsworth. Contributed photo

Pictured here are just a few of the Central Maine Square Dance Club members who attended this year’s club picnic. It was held on Sunday, July 29, at the summer cottage of Gary and Myra Chaloult, in Smithfield. The weather was very cooperative and the water was nice and cool, perfect for the day. The food was outstanding as was the opportunity to meet so many of friends off the dance floor. The Central Maine Square Dance Club meets every Tuesday night from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., at the Waterville Jr. High school on the West River Road (Rte. 104), in Watervillle. A brand new season has started with new beginners classes. Call Bob at 447-0094 or Cindy at 631-8816 for more details .

This group also traveled to Cornwall, Ontario, Canada, for this year’s 10th anniversary festival which took place from Friday, August 24 – 26. That weekend saw almost 400 dancers attending to dance various levels of squares and also included round dancing. Those attending came from 17 U.S. states and five Canadian provinces of Canada. It’s always nice to see friends whom we haven’t seen in quite a while and also meet many newer friends.

Spectrum to raise residential video service rates

Charter Communications (locally known as Spectrum), continues to enhance their services, offer more of the best entertainment choices and deliver the best value. “We are committed to offering our customers with products and services we are sure they will enjoy, said Shelley Winchenbach, director of government affairs, in a letter to municipal officers. “Containing costs and efficiently managing our operations are critical to providing customers with the best value possible. Like every business, Charter faces rising costs that require occasional price adjustments. ”

As a result, customers will be notified of the following price adjustments through a bill message on or after October 1, 2018. Effective on or after November 1, 2018, pricing will be adjusted for residential video service:

  • Broadcast TV Surcharge from $8.85 to $9.95;
  • Spectrum Receiver from $6.99 to $7.50;
  • Digital Adapters from $4.99 to $5.99;
  • Latino View from $7.99 to $8.99.

“We remain committed to providing an excellent experience for our customers, in your community and in each of the communities we serve,” continued Winchenbach. If you have any questions about this change, you may contact Winchenbach at 207-620-3319 or via email at shelley.winchenbach@charter.com.

Mobile home replacement initiative now ongoing

The Maine State Housing Authority has implemented a Mobile Home Replacement Initiative, effective June 15, 2018. The program provides the combination of an amortizing, interest bearing Maine Housing Mortgage Loan and a $30,000 Maine Housing grant. The initiative is designed to assist income eligible Maine residents seeking to replace their pre-1976 mobile home with a new Energy Star certified manufactured home on the same site.

The borrowers must execute a deferred, forgivable note and mortgage to ensure compliance with the 15-year occupancy requirement.

Those eligible for this new limited-time opportunity are applicants who own and occupy a pre-1976 mobile home, defined as being built before June 15, 1976, and must qualify for a MaineHousing First Home or Salute ME mortgage in a first-lien position. The first-time home buyers requirement is waived.

The optional $30,000 grant requires a 15-year occupancy compliance period. All the funds can be applied to dismantle and remove the existing mobile home unit and install, on the original site, a new Energy Star certified manufactured home. Funds can be used to pay off an existing mortage loan, to pay for borrower closing costs, to pay for outstanding assessments, and site development costs.

The new units must be Energy Star certified manufactured homes which are permanently connected to water, sewer, electric and other utilities. The home must be anchored to a permanent foundation in accordance with provisions set forth by the Maine Manufactured Housing Board with the wheels, axles, towing hitch and tongue removed. The land on which the home is located can be owned by the applicants, private leased land or in an approved park.

Under the new initiative, borrowers must be credit qualified for a Home Mortgage Program payable loan.

Income qualifications are: in Kennebec, Somerset, Knox and Lincoln counties, $54,480 for 1-2 persons, and $62,640 for three persons or more.

A sample transaction would be $65,000 for a new Energy Star home, $35,000 project costs, to include site preparation, slab, utility hook-ups, removal of the existing home, paying off an existing mortgage and closing costs, for a total of $100,000. Subtracting the credit for the grant brings the mortgage total to $70,000, which, with 4.5 percent interest (APR of 5.11 percent), would equal a monthly payment of $354.68. Costs will vary by case, with interest rates subject to change. The payments are based on a 30-year term.

For more information, visit www.mainehousing.org or www.MaineHousing.org/HomeLoan; or telephone 207-626-4663 or 800-452-4668.

Jigsaw puzzles topic at Kennebec Historical Society

Jigsaw puzzles originated in Europe in the mid-1700’s in the form of “dissected maps” to teach geography to young children. American production began around 1815 for children’s puzzles, and almost one hundred years later for puzzles that would interest adults. During the early 1930’s there was a year-long craze for jigsaw puzzles. Large and small companies, including many in Maine, worked at that time to satisfy the huge demand for hand-cut wooden puzzles.

After World War II, die-cut cardboard puzzles replaced the more expensive wooden ones. Today only a handful of companies continue to make hand-cut wooden puzzles, one example being Elms Puzzles, of Harrison. Anne Williams, the presenter, will cover the earliest puzzles and some nineteenth century examples. Her discussion of post-1900 puzzles will focus on Maine puzzle makers.

The Kennebec Historical Society’s June Presentation is co-sponsored by the Maine State Library and free to the public (donations gladly accepted). The presentation will take place on Wednesday, June 20, 2018, at 6:30 p.m. at the Maine State Library located at 230 State Street in Augusta.