Local teen wins preliminary round of “Lights, Camera, Save”

Keisha Small, left, and Allan Rancourt, President of Kennebec Federal Savings, congratulating Keisha upon being the preliminary round winner in the Lights, Camera, Save, video competition. (photo courtesy of Kennebec Federal Savings)

Submitted by Dave Carew

Keisha Small, an 18-year-old senior at Lawrence High School, in Fairfield, who is also enrolled in Mass Media Communications at Mid-Maine Technical Center, in Waterville, has been selected by Kennebec Federal Savings as the winner of the local round of the “Lights, Camera, Save!” video competition sponsored by the American Bankers Association. The competition, open to those from 13 to 18 years of age, solicits original short videos from teens nationwide; each video must promote the value of saving money and using money wisely among teens. Keisha worked with her MMTC teammate, Mason Cormier, to create the video. Keisha’s teacher at MMTC is Dave Boardman, Mass Media Communications Instructor.

Keisha submitted the 90-second video to Kennebec Federal Savings, the local participating financial institution for the “Lights, Camera, Save!” video competition. Kennebec Federal Savings selected Keisha’s video to advance to the national competition, and also announced at a ceremony held in Waterville on January 15 that they were awarding Keisha a new GoPro camera.

“We chose a storyline approach to the video, to draw people in,” Keisha said. “We wanted to show that smart, regular saving can not only help you pay bills, but also help you do really enjoyable things, like taking trips.”

Keisha’s video, along with all the entries submitted by banks across the country, now advances to the national competition, where it will be reviewed by ABA Foundation judges. They will select up to 6 videos as finalists to be shown for the Savers’ Choice social media contest and Bankers’ Choice contest.

The Savers’ Choice Social Media Contest will run from noon February 12 through noon February 19, and all are welcome to vote. (More information is available here.)

The Banker’s Choice contest will take place at the Conference for Community Bankers, in Orlando, Florida, from February 9-12, where bankers will vote on the finalists.

National winners will be announced Wednesday, February 26, at 2 p.m. ET, via ABA’s YouTube Channel.

The first place, second place, and third place winners will receive cash prizes of $5,000, $2,500, and $1,000, respectively, to fund their savings goals. Each winner’s school also will receive a scholarship for a teacher to attend the 2020 Jump$tart National Educator Conference.

View the winning video entry below:

Dave Carew, of Waterville, is a freelance book editor, publicist and copywriter, and can be contacted at (615) 540-7457.

First Sci-Fi and Family Nerd fest planned

Contributed photo

The first ever Maine Sci-Fi & Fantasy Nerd Fest will take place Sunday, January 26, at the Fairfield Community Center, in Fairfield. There will be a bevy of fun things going on which include, light saber fighting, a D&D battle royale to win a real fantasy sword, amazing cosplay characters for great picture taking, tons of vendors like artists, crafts, toys, authors and books, not to mention, comics, jewelry, fortune telling, face painting, and so much more.

Fairfield Police Department holds another successful toy drive

From left to right, Sgt. Matthew Wilcox, Officer Dakota Willhoite, Sgt. Patrick Mank, Officer Nolan Allen, Officer Jarrett Hill, Officer Shanna Blodgett, Chief Thomas Gould, Ret. Officer William Beaulieu, Officer Timothy MacArthur, Officer Matthew Bard, Officer Casey Dugas and The Grinch. Photo by Tawni Lively, Central Maine Photography

13th annual Cops for Kids program delivers toys to children at Christmas

This is the 13th year that the officers of the Fairfield Police Department have put on their Santa hats and gotten into their “sleighs” to spread Christmas cheer to the boys and girls of Fairfield. The officers prepare for this program all year long, making sure they check their lists once, twice and again once more. Pulling into a driveway and seeing the kids in a window with excited faces and huge smiles warms our hearts and reminds us what Christmas is truly all about. They all look forward to this one night, all year long.

Graduates from military basic training

PVT Jordaan Harris

Parents Ben and Patrice Harris, of Fairfield, have announced their daughter, PVT Jordaan Harris, has graduated from Army Bootcamp, on November 15, 2019. She successfully completed 10 weeks of intensive basic training. She has reported to Fort Huachuca, in Arizona, to complete her AIT before heading to her duty station.

2019 Lawrence High School boys varsity soccer

The 2019 Lawrence High School boys varsity soccer team, Front row, from left to right Colin Day, Ethan Timmins, Camron Jordan, Jake Ryder, Noah Webber, Dylan Hardenburg, Cody Dixon, Hunter Roy, Tucker Roy and Rodney Smart. Back, Bob Towne, Tyler Harris, Ben Nadeau, Nate Pierce, Gabe York, Evan Craig, Dylan Martin-Hachey, Riley Sinclair, Ryan Bourque, Braden Nadeau and Ryan Mountain. (Photo by Missy Brown, Central Maine Photography staff)

Area roads not affected by questionable pavement sealant

by Roland D. Hallee

Recent awareness of several motor vehicle crashes on Route 225, in Rome, has prompted the Maine Department of Transportation to suspend the use of an asphalt sealant that has been used. The investigation will focus on the mixture used in the sealant and whether that is the cause of the slippery road conditions. It has been described as resembling the effects of black ice. It is not exclusive to Maine, but has occurred throughout the United States.

“Fogging,” as it is called, is an inexpensive way of slowing the break down of pavement that is commonly used on certain spots or stretches of road.

The material and its use is normally a light application of a diluted asphalt that gets its name from the way it is applied.

The next step in the investigation will be to see if the sealant was properly applied. The company that did the work is Down East Emulsions LLC and applied by SHOem Roadway Services LLC, under the direction of the MDOT.

Locally, it was noticed this past summer that some sort of sealant was applied along the breakdown lanes on Route 3, as it passes through China, because of its shiny, wet-looking surface during dry conditions.

China Town Manager Dennis Heath said, “I do not believe the sealant is part of the process for our roads.” The town contracted for hot-mix asphalt shim and overlay. Heath continued, “As I understand it, the sealant at issue is ‘fogged’ onto the road surface as a low-cost separate application to extend the life of a road’s pavement until it can be repaved.”

Heath also interjected, “Our friends in Ireland can attest to why it is important to slow down on wet roads. The water alone presents the possibility of lost traction, but when mixed with the build-up of oil and tire residue, you have the makings of an oil slick that is treacherous.”

Vassalboro Town Manager Mary Sabins stated, “I am not aware of this sealant problem in our area. I only became aware of it when I saw the story on the news.”

Fairfield Town Manager Michelle Flewelling confirmed that “nothing like this product has been applied by the town of Fairfield in the town of Fairfield.”

However, MDOT has a project on Rte. 201 that starts in Fairfield and goes to Skowhegan. This project was contracted to Pike Industries. The breakdown lanes do appear to have had a similar application.

Flewelling then added, “My public works director did mention that he spun a bit when he attempted to leave the Good Will-Hinckley campus this morning to go back onto Rte. 201.”

According to the three town managers, the sealant in question has not been used on town roads by their respective road crews.

It seems that only state roads have had the sealant applied in various locations.

An email sent to the Maine Department of Transportation was not returned by press time.

Lasell College honors class of 2019 at 165th commencement ceremony

A record number of graduate and undergraduate students at Lasell College, in Newton, Massachusetts, were awarded degrees on May 11, 2019, in a ceremony featuring remarks from Massachusetts Congressman Joseph Kennedy III.

Vincent Marchesi, of Waterville, graduated with a BS in accounting.

Chad Martin, of Fairfield, graduated with a BS in finance.

2019 PAL football camp held in Fairfield

Young football players are getting instructions from several Lawrence High School team members and Bulldogs’ coach John Hersom during the PAL Football Camp held on July 29-31. (photo by Central Maine Photography staff)

Local students on University of New Hampshire’s dean’s list

The following students have been named to the Dean’s List at the University of New Hampshire for the spring 2019 semester, in Durham, New Hampshire.

Matthew Murray, of Augusta, earning highest honors.

Madeline Lewis, of Augusta, earning highest honors.

Cody Short, of Fairfield, earning high honors.

Bradford Wilbur, of Fairfield, earning honors.

Carly LaRochelle, of Fairfield, earning highest honor.s

Elijah Caret, of Oakland, earning highest honors.

Hannah Duperry, of Oakland, earning highest honors

Adam Bovie, of Vassalboro, earning highest honors

9th annual Battle for Breast Cancer raises $42,000

Messalonskee field hockey team. Front row, left to right, Riley Waraskevich, Ann Corbett, Journey Charles, Chloe Tilley, Abby Breznyak, Nealey Dillon, Jenna Cassani and Jenna Reardon. Back, Coach McLaughlin, Morgan Wills, Logan Alexander, Sidney Hatch, Alyson Violette, Shea Cassani, Malaika Thurston, Frankie Caccamo, Sarah Hellen and Coach Feldpausch. (photo submitted by Kim Kennedy)

by Mark Huard

The 9th Annual Battle For Breast Cancer took place at Thomas College, in Waterville, on Saturday, July 13, and was a truly great success.

The July 13 benefit tournament featured 11 Central Maine high school field hockey teams: Skowhegan, Messalonskee, Mt. Blue, Lawrence, Dirigo, Dexter, Nokomis, MCI, Winslow, Erskine Academy and Winthrop.

Now in its 9th year, more than $240,000 has been raised since 2011 for the beneficiary, the Martha B. Webber Breast Care Center, a program of Franklin Memorial Hospital, in Farmington. Diagnostic breast imaging, biopsies, lab services, surgical consultations, and post-surgical garments are just some of the examples of how the money has been used.”

“Money raised is used to support those with breast cancer living in Central Maine with health care costs as well as practical resources for patients such as gas cards and help with child care which may impact patient care,” said organizer Paula Doughty. “Last year we started a program with platinum thru bronze sponsorship opportunities for businesses or individuals, which provides sponsors with special recognition in the event’s program and during the opening ceremony.” This sponsorship has helped us tremendously.

“For over 40 years I drove 45 minutes a day to work and 45 minutes back from work,” said organizer Paula Doughty. “During this time I did my best thinking. Over the years I had experienced in my family and other people who had jobs but no insurance or high deductibles suffer. Often they got no care at all or couldn’t follow up with medical recommendations because of their financial situations. The hospitals would hound them for the payments they couldn’t make, and they were denied government help, yet didn’t have the money to pay on their own. Often many just gave up and ultimately died. That’s when I thought it would be great to try to help some of these local people with their needs. I met with some of my Skowhegan Field Hockey Boosters and the Battle for Breast Cancer came about.”

The Lawrence field hockey team. Front row, left to right, Abigail Townsend, Taylor Jordan, Sophia Luckern, Ashtynn Stewart, Taylor Leclerc, Emma Poulin, Alexis Trask, Lexi Gordon, Emily Hersey, Haylei Niles and Holly Bolduc. Back, Coach Shawna Robinson, Abbie Vigue Brooke Butler, Capt. Miranda Lambert, Capt. Lexi Lewis, Victoria Dunphy, Capt. Elsie Suttie, Tori Richards, Cassie Richards and Maddie Niles. (photo by Missy Brown, Central Maine Photography staff)

They chose the Martha B. Webber Center because it was local and rural. Often people don’t have the will or the resources to drive to the cities of Maine and they thought it was a good fit. Back in 2011, a total of four teams got together and had the first Battle for Breast Cancer at Colby College which included Skowhegan, Mt. Blue, Winslow and Nokomis. Their goal was to raise $1,000 and they ended up raising $16,655.

Since that time with over 11 teams they have now raised $242,000 dollars which has helped over 550 local people in Central Maine with everything from a gas card to get to treatments to many medical procedures. The entire central Maine field hockey community has stepped up and wanted to participate. Over the last two years they also have been collecting sponsors which has really helped boost the final amounts. The majority of the money is raised by field hockey players raising one dollar at a time with bottle drives, car washes, toll booths, and personal collections.

Next year will be the tenth year and Doughty said we plan on going all out to make it the best ever. “We know after reading and listening to testimonials of patients we help how worthwhile this event is. Hopefully more and more people in the Central Maine Area will donate for our cause,” Doughty concluded.