Issue for July 29, 2021

Celebrating 33 years of local news

Trenton Clark has hiked all 14 of Maine’s 4,000-plus foot peaks

Nine-year-old Oakland youth accomplishes feat with mom

Trenton Clark, 9 years old, of Oakland, has successfully hiked all of Maine’s 4,000-plus foot peaks. Trenton and his mom Leanne, started hiking as a way to get out into nature more when the pandemic started last year and quickly fell in love with the rush of climbing big mountains. Trenton says, “it wasn’t always easy but it was always worth it.” Maine has fourteen 4,000-foot peaks, the tallest two being on Mt. Katahdin—Trenton hiked Baxter Peak (5,267 feet) at Katahdin last August and then Hamlin Peak (4,756 feet) this month…

Your Local News

Half dozen questions may be on November ballot

CHINA — If relevant town committees’ plans work out, China selectmen will be asked in early August to approve half a dozen Nov. 2 local ballot questions. China’s elections for selectboard, planning board, budget committee and Regional School Unit #18 board will also be held Nov. 2…

CBC to hold public informational meeting

CHINA — China Broadband Committee (CBC) members spent much of their July 22 meeting planning for July 29, the next step in a schedule they hope will lead to voters approving a Nov. 2 bond issue to expand and improve broadband service throughout town…

China Community Food Pantry: Nonprofit Spotlight

CHINA — Nearly 30 years ago, Lee and Ann Austin founded the China Community Food Pantry with one goal in mind: to help reduce food insecurity in central Maine. The couple had owned and operated the Willow Beach Camps Resort on China Lake for more than a decade, and after closing the establishment, they were looking for a way to give back to a community that had been so supportive of them over the years… by Eric W. Austin

Palermo Community Foundation: Nonprofit Spotlight

PALERMO — Originally known as the Palermo Community Foundation, the organization was chartered in 1996 by a group of friends led by John Potter, Jim Osier, Dennis Sturgis, Ted Bigos, Mike McCarty, Eben Bradstreet, and Herb Flint. Their plan was to serve the needs of the community by providing a building for local groups to meet, learn, share ideas and talent, and to create a more sustainable community… submitted by Connie Bellet

18th annual China Community Days set for Aug. 6-8

CHINA — The China Community Days are set for Friday, August 6 through Sunday, August 8…(full program of events)…

China LakeSmart Program: Let’s Talk Lawns

CHINA — As a general rule, lawns don’t provide lake protection equivalent to other highly vegetated areas. Rainwater easily flows over lawns, and the tiny grass roots cannot hold soil together…

China to hold WindowDressers workshop this fall

CHINA — 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…

Noël Bonam named new state director of AARP Maine

CENTRAL ME — AARP Maine has announced that Noël Bonam joins the organization as the new state director. He succeeds Lori Parham, who served in the role for nearly ten years and accepted a new position in AARP’s national Government Affairs office in May…

Mid-Maine Chamber names vice president of operations

WATERVILLE — Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce, located in Waterville, has named Brandi Meisner as its new vice president of operations. This is a new position for the Chamber, with plans for Meisner to focus on member growth and retention, marketing, social media and website development…

Vassalboro Sestercentennial Scavenger Hunt
Item #15:

Find a quarter, dime, nickel and a penny having dates of either all “1971” or all “2021”.

LETTERS: Caretakers deserve higher pay

from Frank Slason (Somerville) — I would like to mention a loyal and dedicated group of people who are caregivers for our loved ones in nursing home and other homes, too…

LETTERS: Seniors program does incredible work

from Nate Miller — Our town has had its own school(s) since its founding in 1804. Today, we are faced with the reality that the MSAD #49 School Board has decided to close the Albion Elementary School, as part of the MSAD #49 new school construction project…

OPINIONS: Reaction to announcement of possible closing of Albion Elementary School

ALBION — Our town has had its own school(s) since its founding in 1804. Today, we are faced with the reality that the MSAD #49 School Board has decided to close the Albion Elementary School, as part of the MSAD #49 new school construction project… by Katrina Dumont, Kara Kugelmeyer, Billy-Jo Woods

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Coburn Classical Institute (new)

CENTRAL ME HISTORY — The school that in 1883 became Coburn Classical Institute started in 1821 as the first of what later became four (according to Ernest Cummings Marriner) or five (according to an anonymous website author) college preparatory schools (also called grammar schools, academies, or institutes) associated with what is now Colby College… by Mary Grow [3828 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Oak Grove School

VASSALBORO HISTORY — We now digress – for a change – from descriptions of churches on the National Register of Historic Places to the Oak Grove School, because of its association with the Sophia D. Bailey Chapel discussed last week (and also known as the Oak Grove Chapel)…. by Mary Grow [1801 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Churches – Part 5

VASSALBORO HISTORY — Returning to the list of churches on the National Register of Historic Places, the next to be discussed is one that readers met briefly last week. The Sophia D. Bailey Chapel, at Oak Grove School, (the school had several names; Oak Grove School is simplest) was originally known as the River Meeting House. It was where China Quakers worshipped before the East Vassalboro meeting house and then China’s own Pond Meeting House were constructed… by Mary Grow [1595 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Rufus Jones houses

CHINA HISTORY — Moving sideways (as this series so often does) on a temporary detour from churches on the National Register of Historic Places, this article will describe three National Register properties in the Town of China recognized for their association with Rufus Jones or members of his family, plus China’s other two National Register properties (one demolished, the other mostly intact)… by Mary Grow [1856 words]

Webber’s Pond

Webber’s Pond is a comic drawn by an anonymous central Maine resident (click thumbnail to enlarge)…

Lake Association Annual Meetings 2021

CENTRAL ME — Listing of local area Lake Association meetings. (To include your town in this listing, please email us at…

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…


CLINTON – Mervin L. Tuttle Jr., 72, of Clinton, passed away Saturday, July 17, 2021, at Alfond Center for Health, in Augusta, after a seven-month battle with COVID-19 respiratory complications. He was born in Waterville, on January 19, 1949, to Mervin L. Tuttle Sr. and Lenora A. Bickford Tuttle… and remembering 10 others.

Common Ground: Win a $10 gift certificate!

DEADLINE: Friday, August 13, 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: B.J Bradstreeet, Palermo.

Town Line Original Columnists


by Roland D. Hallee | Sitting with friends around a camp fire a while back, one of the neighbors said, that while kayaking that afternoon, she had seen a Golden eagle. I immediately chimed in that they were an endangered species, and were not known to exist in Maine (according to something I had read years ago)…


by Jayne Winters | Over the past month, I’ve had the unexpected pleasure to see skunk families waddling along the side of the road. Just watching them makes me smile, so voila – the topic of this month’s column! I suspected Carleen had written about skunks in the past and sure enough, I found an article, some of which follows…


by Peter Cates | This hefty book of at least 10 pounds could rightfully be considered a coffee table book. A history of the Brooklyn, New York, Philharmonic, it was also a labor of love for its author Maurice Edwards (1922-2020) who had been involved with the Phil­har­monic since its official beginning in 1954, later becoming executive director before retiring during the mid ‘90s…

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & PercySOLON & BEYOND

by Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy | Have been going through some of my old columns to find something to write about, and found some about when I was visiting people to get their picture to put in the paper. Found some interesting ones in the year 2004. (This was before Percy!) It was when I was visiting people to get their pictures and a recipe to put in this column…


by Debbie Walker | Tonight, I am using one of my books, one of the many, authored by Joey Green. You might have seen him on The Tonight Show, Jay Leno, Good Morning America, and The View. When does he find time to write?…


(NAPSI) | Living may be easier during the warmer weather seasons but that doesn’t mean your wellness goals should be swept under the rug. To help, GOLO, the pioneering wellness solutions company, has a range of healthy suggestions for the summer, whether you’re at home, road tripping with friends and family, or grilling in your backyard…