Issue for March 21, 2024

Celebrating 36 years of local news

New Dimensions FCU has record-breaking impact on volunteerism

New Dimensions FCU has demonstrated its commitment to the philosophy of People Helping People by volunteering their personal time and assistance to local communities each year. In 2023, the credit union recorded an outstanding 1,994.75 hours of personal volunteer time, surpassing all other credit unions of its asset size across Maine…

A Maine rarity comes to China

Many of we older Mainers spent much of our winters as kids outside, sliding down long hills on toboggans and other “vehicles” with runners. In some parts of our state, especially along the Downeast coast, one of the more widely seen sleds was known as a Cape Racer. While I haven’t found much information on these versions, the China Historical Society recently acquired one and it seems to be a true rarity. And, there are some ties to China. A quick look at those links starts us off… by Bob Bennett

Town News

Select board opens three sealed heat pump bids; postpones decision

WINDSOR – At the February 27 meeting of the Windsor  Select Board, Ray Bates, Select Board Chairman, opened three sealed heat pump bids/RFPs. A bid was submitted by RJ Energy Services, Inc. The proposal included three options. A bid was submitted by C.B. Haskell Fuel Co. Inc…

Planners OK repairs to boathouse; two other applications postponed

VASSALBORO – Vassalboro planning board members approved one of the three applications on their March 12 agenda and postponed the other two…

Select board discusses a wide variety of topics

CHINA – China select board members discussed a wide variety of topics at their March 11 meeting and made three decisions (in addition to the routine ones, like approving expenditures). Without dissenting votes, board members…

Planners approve solar farm on Windsor Rd.

CHINA – After a lightly attended March 12 public hearing, China planning board members approved Perennial Sand Pit Solar’s planned community solar farm in a gravel pit on the west side of Route 32 (Windsor Road) in southern China…

Schedule of Holy Week services at local churches

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Name that film!

Identify the film in which this famous line originated and qualify to win FREE passes to The Maine Film Center, in Waterville: “A martini. Shaken not stirred.” Email us at with subject “Name that film!” Deadline for submission is April 4, 2024…

PHOTO: Waterville’s Bob Chenard inducted to Franco-American Hall of Fame

WATERVILLE – Maine State Rep. Bruce White, D-Waterville, right, nominated Robert Chenard, left, to be inducted into Maine’s Franco-American Hall of Fame on Tuesday. Chenard is an author, lecturer and instructor with a specialty in Franco-American genealogy…

ShineOnCass announces scholarship

CENTRAL ME – The ShineOnCass Foundation announces a new $1,000 ShineOnCass Community Ser­vice Scholarship to be awarded annually to one area high school senior who makes service and kindness part of their everyday life. The scholarship is created in honor and memory of Cassidy Charette, a longtime volunteer in the central Maine community and former Messalonskee High School student, in Oakland, who died in a hayride accident in 2014…

Northern Light Health joins Health Care Climate Council

CENTRAL ME – Displaying continued commitment to the health of its patients, colleagues, and community, Northern Light Health has been selected as the newest member of the Health Care Climate Council. Northern Light is leading the way in minimizing its environmental effects while providing excellent care in a sustainable manner…

Rogers promoted at Northern Light

CENTRAL ME – Rose Rogers, BSN, RN, was promoted to director of Northern Light Walk-In Care and Northern Light Inland Hospital Emergency Department. Rogers has been overseeing the ED since 2019…

Camden National Bank promotes Barbara Raths

CENTRAL ME – Camden National Bank is pleased to announce the promotion of Barbara Raths, who formerly served as director of treasury management and government banking, to executive vice president of commercial banking. In her elevated role, Raths will focus on accelerating core commercial business development across the company’s footprint and will continue to lead treasury management sales and service strategies…

Scholarship application open for public high school seniors

CENTRAL ME – The Worthington Scholarship Foundation is excited to announce their 2024 scholarship application is now open. Students graduating from a Maine public high school who meet the eligibility requirements may apply…

Local happenings

EVENTS: Maple Sunday weekend slated for March 23-24

CENTRAL ME – The Maine Maple Producers Association (MMPA) is pleased to announce the 41st Maine Maple Sunday Weekend on March 23-24, 2024. A favorite annual event, visitors are welcomed at local sugarhouses to celebrate Maine’s maple syrup in as many ways as possible…

EVENTS: AARP Tax-Aide program available in central Maine

CENTRAL ME – The AARP Tax-Aide program provides free federal and state income tax preparation and electronic filing to low-and moderate-income individuals. Returns are prepared by IRS-certified volunteers. The program is funded by the AARP Foundation, a tax-exempt charitable organization, and the IRS…

CALENDAR OF EVENTS: Pancake breakfast with the Easter Bunny to benefit Winslow Community Cupboard Food Pantry

WINSLOW – Winslow Community Cupboard food pantry – which serves food-insecure children, seniors, and other adults from Winslow, Waterville, and 22 surrounding towns – will hold a very special “Pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny” event on Saturday, March 30, from 8:30 to 11 a.m., at Winslow Congregational Church, 12 Lithgow Street. Cost of the breakfast is just a $5 donation, with all proceeds benefiting Winslow Community Cupboard food pantry… and many other local events!

Local town meetings schedule for 2024

Schedule for town meetings in 2024 for Albion, China, Palermo & Vassalboro..


FAIRFIELD – Michael Allen Thibodeau, 70, of Fairfield, passed away Wednesday, February 28, 2024. Mike, “Sparky” as he was known by friends and colleagues, was a master electrician bringing light into people’s lives and homes throughout Maine for the past 40 years. He was a dedicated, skilled and conscientious businessman. The only thing he worked harder for than his clients, was his family… and remembering 9 others.

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Sidney ponds (new)

SIDNEY HISTORY — Here is the last article (for a while) on central Kennebec Valley ponds and people for whom they might have been named. This week’s topic is ponds in the Town of Sidney (which was until Jan. 30, 1792, part of Vassalboro, despite being on the other – west – side of the Kennebec River)… by Mary Grow

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Ponds named after people

VASSALBORO HISTORY — Returning to early settlers who had ponds named after them and related topics (discussed in many recent articles in this series), your writer starts with a reader’s question: is Webber Pond in Vassalboro named for Charles Webber, mentioned at the end of the Jan. 11 article?… by Mary Grow

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Malta War, 1809

WINDSOR HISTORY — There are still some left-over ponds and related information to continue the previous subseries, but your writer is ready to take – and to give her readers – a break from maps, water bodies and genealogies. Instead, she will present the story of an often-mentioned, but in detail long avoided, historical event, the Malta War. (From 1809 to 1820, the present Town of Windsor was named Malta.)… by Mary Grow

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Windsor brooks named after people

WINDSOR HISTORY — Barton Brook, in northwestern Windsor, was almost certainly named after Dr. Stephen Barton, Sr. (June 10, 1740- Oct. 21, 1804), or his family. The brook connects the north end of Mud Pond with the south end of Threemile Pond (which is mostly in China and Vassalboro). In his history of Windsor, Linwood Lowden wrote that in 1799, the stream was named Wonnamdogus, a Native name that is now Warromantogus… by Mary Grow

Common Ground: Win a $10 gift certificate!

DEADLINE: Wednesday, April 11, 2024

Identify the people in these three photos, and tell us what they have in common. You could win a $10 gift certificate to Hannaford Supermarket! 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: Wayne Morris, Norridgewock

Town Line Original Columnists


by Roland D. Hallee | The old reliable spring indicator appeared in my backyard over the weekend, twice. The robin made its presence known. However, it was what happened Monday that certified that old folklore. I know spring officially arrived this past Tuesday, March 19. That is a day or two earlier than usual, but it seems everything is early this year…


by Rachael Siegfriedt | Investing for your future is important – but it can be challenging. How can you navigate the complexities of the financial markets and make the right decisions for your situation?…


by Peter Cates | Born in Pea Cove, Maine, Harold John Breau (1916-1977), better known as Hal Lone Pine, was a popular country singer for almost 40 years, especially throughout Maine, New Brunswick and the Canadian prairies, and recorded several songs for RCA Victor during the early 1950s with his wife Betty Cody…


HEALTH | Practicing basic oral hygiene, such as brushing, flossing, and going to regular checkups with a dental professional are some of the most important ways to maintain oral health. However, if these practices are not paired with proper nutrition, oral health can still suffer…