Issue for April 1, 2021

Celebrating 33 years of local news

Teaching in the year of Covid-19

Covid-19 has created unprecedented times in our schools full of challenges for parents, students and teachers alike. I had the opportunity to interview one of our local seasoned teachers, Ron Maxwell, a science teacher with China Middle School, who gave a frank look into what it is like to teach during this era of Covid. Although we may be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, it is important to document what our teachers are going through during these extraordinary times… by Jeanne Marquis [1031 words]

Your Local News

Road complaints bring action by selectmen

VASSALBORO — With roads unusually rough this spring, Vassalboro residents have complained, frequently and loudly. Vassalboro selectmen have listened, sympathized and come up with a solution: a municipal helicopter service, tentatively named the Vass Fly…

Vassalboro selectmen meet

VASSALBORO — Vassalboro selectmen meet at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 1, in person at Vassalboro Community School gymnasium. Major items on their agenda include…

Vassalboro planning board meets

VASSALBORO — Vassalboro Planning Board members have four applications on the agenda for their Tuesday, April 6, meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. The meeting will be virtual…

Colby professor says China Lake has moderate amounts of nutrients

CHINA — Colby College Professor Denise A. Bruesewitz, Ph.D., gave China Planning Board members “more than a little bit of food for thought,” Chairman Randall Downer remarked after her presentation at the board’s March 23 meeting…

China to continue using Waterville dispatch center

CHINA — At a short China selectmen’s meeting March 29, board members unanimously authorized two actions by Town Manager Becky Hapgood and discussed Selectman Janet Preston’s idea of a China farmers’ market…

Selectmen ask for more info from broadband committee

CHINA — Ronald Breton, Chairman of the China Selectboard, requested and received time on the China Broadband Committee’s March 25 agenda. In return, CBC members ended their meeting by drafting an email request for time on the selectboard’s April 26 agenda…

TIF committee reviews mission statement

CHINA — China’s Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Committee members covered two of the three items on their March 24 agenda, without reaching final agreement on either…

Become a member: An open letter to our readers

Dear Reader: For the past 33 years, The Town Line has pledged a mission statement to “create a vibrant rural community connecting our towns, organizations and individuals through communication, education and public dialogue.” It’s all part of The Town Line’s mission to be a positive force in our community…

Listing of local town meetings

CENTRAL ME — Listing of local town meetings in central Maine. To have your town listed, please email us at…

Unity VFD to host bake sale

UNITY — The Unity Volunteer Fire Department will be hosting a bakd sale on Saturday, April 3, from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Cone’z on Depot Street, in Unity…

Winslow Public Library re-opening to public April 1

WINSLOW — The Winslow Public Library will reopen to public entry on Thursday, April 1, 2021. Controlled admittance to the library will be allowed on Tuesdays & Thursdays from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m…

Easter is not about bunnies and eggs

by Gary Kennedy — For all of you who are convinced that the holiday,” Easter” has something to do with the Cadbury Bunny and her ability to lay chocolate cream filled eggs, I have become compelled after many hours of arduous service marked by unsurpassed courage and fortitude to research and confront this obvious hyperbole…

Noah Lambert, of Fairfield, wins the 2021 Virtual Slam Dunk Contest

FAIRFIELD — Noah Lambert, 16, from Fairfield, is 6-feet, one-inch tall and was one of eight chosen in the Big Time Hoops Maine Dunking Competition… by Mark Huard

Mainers have more help available to pay monthly health insurance bills

CENTRAL ME — Mainers have more health coverage options than ever. Free help is available to anyone who needs assistance understanding their options. Sorting through those options can be challenging, even for the most sophisticated consumer…

Ezhaya Scholarship applications now available

CENTRAL ME — Joseph B. Ezhaya was a community leader who distinguished himself with his warmth, enthusiasm, generosity and particularly, his friendships. Successful candidates for this scholarship should share Joe’s interest in citizenship, community service and exemplify his spirit and vitality…

Maritime Energy supports LifeFlight with gasoline and diesel sales

CENTRAL ME — Maritime Energy and Maritime Farms convenience stores are once again supporting LifeFlight through gasoline and diesel sales at their 13 Maritime Farms convenience stores. This program, titled “Pennies for Life,” donates one cent for every gallon of gasoline and diesel fuel sold during the months of April and May…

PHOTOS: Scouts take a hike

CHINA — On Saturday, March 20, Scouts from China Troop #479 hiked Beech Hill Preserve, in Rockport, and enjoyed a beautiful sunny day…

STUDENT WRITERS: The search for happiness

ERSKINE ACADEMY — Do you want to be happy? Most people will answer yes to this question, which is good. Unfortunately, we often try to simplify happiness, and lose sight of what being happy really means. Nathaniel Hawthorne described happiness as, “like a butterfly which, when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp; but which, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you…” by Aidan Larrabee

STUDENT WRITERS: Why fewer people Are Getting Married

ERSKINE ACADEMY — Growing up, many Americans believed they would get a job, buy a house, get married and start a family. However, it seems that for many Americans, life did not turn out that way. The amount of marriages that happen every year in the US is at an all time low at two million a year… by Grace Kelso (China)

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Agriculture (New)

MAINE HISTORY — By the 19th century, Maine farmers realized the benefits of organizing. Samuel L. Boardman, author of the agriculture chapter in Henry Kingsbury’s Kennebec County history, wrote that the Waterville-based Kennebec Agricultural Society, founded in 1787, was the first such group in New England… by Mary Grow [1882 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Livestock

MAINE HISTORY — Besides crops, the other major facet of agriculture is livestock. For early Kennebec Valley settlers, cattle, a term that includes milk-producers, meat-producers and draft animals, were especially important… by Mary Grow [2052 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: 18th & 19th century agriculture

CHINA HISTORY — The third farm property in the area this series covers that is on the National Register of Historic Places is in China. The Edmund and Rachel Clark Homestead is on the west side of China Lake… by Mary Grow [1871 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Agriculture history – Part 1

ALBION/BENTON HISTORY — Your writer hopes readers are ready for a change from Romanesque Revival and Hallowell granite, because the coming weeks of Kennebec Valley history will not focus on buildings, though they will continue to appear. The Register of Historic Places for the central Kennebec Valley includes a farm and two farmsteads… by Mary Grow [1810 words]

Give Us Your Best Shot!

The best recent photos from our readers!

Webber’s Pond

Webber’s Pond is a comic drawn by an anonymous central Maine resident…


CHELSEA – Charlie “Chuck” Means III, age 63, passed away on Thursday, March 25, 2021. Chuck was born in Waterville on August 16, 1957, to Charlie A. Means Jr. and Dorothy (Rawley) Means… and remembering 7 others.

2020-’21 Real Estate Tax Due Dates

Real Estate tax due dates for the following towns: CHINA, VASSALBORO, WATERVILLE and WINDSOR…

Common Ground: Win a $10 gift certificate!

DEADLINE: Friday, April 9, 2021

Identify the people in these three photos, and tell us what they have in common. You could win a $10 gift certificate to Retail Therapy Boutique in Waterville! Email your answer to or through our Contact page. Include your name and address with your answer. Use “Common Ground” in the subject!

Previous winner: Thomas Doherty, South China.

Town Line Original Columnists


by Roland D. Hallee | Last week while while doing some work in my backyard, specifically, dealing with the compost bin following the winter, spreading fertilizer in the garden, pruning my black raspberry bushes, and just doing some general clean up, I noticed a flock of startings in a bush in the corner of my property…


by Marilou Suchar | God is not silent.
He whispers to us in the air
He touches us with the sun
He sings to us in the sea
He communicates among the clouds…


by Peter Cates | Author and Bowdoin professor Robert P. Tristram Coffin (1892-1955) won the Pulitzer prize and achieved much renown particularly for his writings and poems about Maine…

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & PercySOLON & BEYOND

by Marilyn Rogers-Bull | I would like to start this column off with an apology: I am so sorry that I couldn’t get the story that was sent to me from the New Portland Library, but I didn’t receive it in time to do that…


by Debbie Walker | Good Day! I have been leafing through some of the helpful hints I have collected over the past few years. I love this stuff, as you probably have noticed…


(NAPSI) | There is good news for many individuals who care for a loved one living with an injury or illness connected to military service. They’re now eligible for free professional assistance…