Week of September 24, 2020

Celebrating 32 years of local news

China resident recognized with prestigious Sages award

Jodi Blackinton, a resident of China, is a recipient of the 2020 Sages of Clinical Services award by her employer Optum, UnitedHealthcare and United Group Clinicians. The award is given out to employees that have demonstrated their commitment to the values of Integrity, Compassion, building trust in Relationships, Innovation, and Performance. This year, out of 49,000 clinicians, there were 1,280 nominations and 130 total winners. This is Blackinton’s second nomination… by Eric W. Austin

Bottle drive helps fund Cub Scout programs

Pack #603 Bear Cub Scout Tristan Morton stands in front of bottles at Neighborhood Redemption, in Augusta. The Cub Scout Pack harvested near Gilbert School after a flyer campaign the prior Saturday. Pack #603 serves Augusta and Windsor, at American Legion Post #205, on Eastern Ave., in Augusta’s Mayfair. Funds raised through the bottle and can collection will be used to help defray the cost of the program the Cubs receive. (photo courtesy of Jeffrey Morton, CR)

Your Local News

Vassalboro finances in good shape with adequate surplus

VASSALBORO — Vassalboro selectmen heard updates on several aspects of town affairs at their Sept. 17 meeting. Auditor Ron Smith, managing partner in Buxton-based RHR Smith & Company, said as of June 30, 2019, the town’s finances were in good shape, with an adequate surplus for emergencies…

All going well with Vassalboro school reopening

VASSALBORO — Vassalboro Community School (VCS) has started the year well, administrators told School Board members as they met Sept. 15, at the beginning of the second week of classes. Safety regulations and educational programming both work well, so far…

Absentee voting notice

CHINA — Note to residents of China: Various organizations are sending absentee ballot request forms to residents of the town, with a return address of the Town Clerk’s Office. These notices were not sent out by the Town of China. If you have already submitted an absentee ballot request, you may disregard these forms. For any concerns please call us at 445-2014…

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Common Ground Country Fair to be held on-line

UNITY — The Common Ground Country Fair, the premier educational event of the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (MOFGA), will be held online September 25-27, 2020. April Boucher, MOFGA’s Fair Director, noted, “While we can’t gather together in person this year, many aspects of the Fair will be available online, including iconic and educational content that folks look forward to year after year”…

Free webinars on invasive forest pests

CENTRAL ME — Presentations are scheduled for Wed, September 23 from 3-4 pm (Knox-Lincoln SWCD); Thu, October 1 from 4-5 pm (Cumberland SWCD); Wed, October 7 from 3-4 pm (Penobscot SWCD); and Tue, Oct 13 from 9-10 am (Central Aroostook SWCD). Maine already has several Invasive Forest Pests targeting our trees and spreading throughout the state including…

Program at ACB Memorial Library

CHINA — “Maine Memories,” the second post-coronavirus outdoor program at the Albert Church Brown Memorial Library in China Village, brought an interested audience to the library’s south lawn Sunday afternoon, Sept. 20…

Winslow’s Veterans Park in need of volunteers

WINSLOW — Volunteers and donors are needed to continue as funds have dwindled over the past few years. Anyone interested can call Karen Loftus and Patti Libby at Winslow Supply Company, 567 Benton Avenue at (207) 873-5608…

Let Them Play Rally on Labor Day

AUGUSTA — Members of the Messolonskee football team rallying in Augusta hoping they have a season! (photos by Central Maine Photography)…

Local seed swap group forming

CHINA — This announcement of the formation of the China Area Seed Swappers is to help gardeners pursue your curiosities and save some money, too. The timing is perfect. It is now the harvest season. Veteran gardeners save some of their crops that make seed for the following years’ plantings…

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Railway transportation (New)

MAINE HISTORY — Although the narrow-gauge railroad that was built inland from Wiscasset starting in 1894 never reached either Québec (its first name was the Wiscasset and Québec) or Waterville or Farmington (later it was the Wiscasset, Waterville and Farmington), as the WW&F it was an integral part of towns along its route. Reminiscences from Palermo include the WW&F… by Mary Grow [2155 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Wiscasset, Waterville & Farmington

MAINE HISTORY — When railroads first began operating in the United States, different companies used different gauges (width between the tracks). “Standard gauge” ranged from four feet eight-and-a-half inches (imported from Britain, used by the Baltimore & Ohio and Boston & Albany lines, among others) to six feet (used by the Erie and the Lackawanna, among others), and was not definitely established at four feet eight-and-a-half inches until after the Civil War…  [1735 words] by Mary Grow

Remembering China Village’s two-room schoolhouse

CHINA — I attended grammar school in a two-room schoolhouse in the village of China at the northern end of the lake. It had two rooms, each with four grades, the younger kids on the ground floor and the older children on the second, each room with its own teacher… by Richard Dillenbeck [961 words]

Up and down the Kennebec Valley: Railroad and trolleys

MAINE HISTORY — Maine began building railroads in the 1840s. They did not replace stagecoaches, however, because the latter continued to connect railroad stops and stations to other population centers. The China history, for example, says that in the 1850s people wanting to go to China from the south or west could take the train to Augusta or Waterville and complete the journey by stagecoach…  [2072 words] by Mary Grow

Give Us Your Best Shot!

The best recent photos from our readers!


SOUTH CHINA – Harold “Hal” Winters, 73, passed away unexpectedly at Eastern Maine Medical Center, in Bangor, on Wednesday, September 2, 2020, following cardiac surgery. Harold was the youngest son of John Kenneth and Betty Jane Winters… and remembering 7 others.

Common Ground: Win a $10 gift certificate!

DEADLINE: Friday, October 9, 2020

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 townline@townline.org or through our Contact page. Include your name and address with your answer. Use “Common Ground” in the subject!

Previous winner: Phyllis Quimby, Windsor.

Town Line Original Columnists


by Roland D. Hallee | While preparing breakfast last Saturday, I glanced out the kitchen window towards my recently cleaned up garden plot. As I looked around I noticed some movement, and commented to my wife: “I think I have the title for a new country song, ‘There’s a squirrel in the compost pile’”…


by Jayne Winters | Due to unexpected circumstances, I’m not able to prepare a new column for September. I feel it is appropriate, however, to submit an article written by the late Carleen Cote which was published in September 2005 and is as applicable today as it was 15 years ago…


by Peter Cates | Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) composed his one and only String Trio for violin, viola and cello in 1788 for a friend/benefactor Johann Michael Puchberg but the circumstances are unknown. The total number of his works are over 600…


by Debbie Walker | Hi! Okay I have to tell you right from the start that the basic steps were also on-line. I did add some of my “senior” wisdom. (Anyone who knows me will see humor in that comment)…


by Dan Beaulieu | You have to be better than anyone else right? Isn’t that what makes business great? That extra little thing, that special thing that makes you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Often it’s not just the product or service but what doing business with that certain company does for you; how doing business with that company makes you feel…

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & PercySOLON & BEYOND

by Marilyn Rogers-Bull | Received a notice from Roland on September 15 that he needed columns early for the September 24 paper, so I hurried to find something to write about. Have thought often lately about how much I have loved writing for different papers over these many years….. In looking for something to write about, I came upon this letter I had received back on September 21, 2003, and it said it was from “An Old Lady Just Checking In to Say Hi”…


(NAPSI) — Nasal congestion is nothing to sneeze at. It affects roughly 20 percent of the population and is associated with reduced quality of life, difficulty sleeping, reduced daytime performance, and increased need for healthcare. In addition to the physical misery, it is estimated the annual financial impact of chronic congestion is more than $5 to $10 billion. Fortunately, scientists are coming up with new and better ways to deal with the problem…