A benefit concert for the Washington County Special Olympics is set for Saturday, April 26th from 2-4 p.m. The event, designed by UMM student Landon Knitweiss was in actuality, part of a class led by Jo-Ellen Harvey, the driving force behind the Special Olympics that is held each year at the University.

The Washington County Special Olympics has become one of the larger Special Olympics events in the region, with many traveling from Hancock County to participate. During his programming class, Knitweiss and other students needed to assess that the program that they were designing was something that the community felt was necessary and would have an impact beyond themselves and UMM students.

Knitweiss knew that he wanted to incorporate music with his program, but didn't just want to put on another concert. He used the opportunity to raise awareness and money for the Special Olympics event that will take place on May 9th and other future Special Olympics events.

Knitweiss designed the program, created an advertising plan which included radio, Facebook and flyers and will conduct an assessment following the event. Kniweiss has some vested interest in the event, as he works at a summer camp with special needs children. He hopes that the event will grow as other community groups may get involved in future years to do similar benefits or support the Special Olympics in other ways.

Knitweiss is a member of the Fremont Street String Band, who will be performing the concert event on Saturday, April 26 from 2 – 4 p.m. at the Portside Room of Kimball Hall at the University. Adults are a suggested $5, while children under 18 are $3. All special Olympians will enter for free. There will be refreshments and all proceeds will go to the Special Olympics of Maine. 

Over 300 people attended the annual Smelt Fry at the Columbia Falls Fire Department grounds, sponsored by the Downeast Salmon Federation last Friday.  Despite being a bit cooler than expected as many clearly thought spring had sprung, dozens of volunteers and hundreds of kids and adults enjoyed the seemingly endless supply of flour-dredged and deep-fried, six inch long fishes that remain such an integral part of our region’s fishery and heritage, along with platters of slaw, blueberry cobbler and biscuits.


Hula hooping and a bounce-tent provided ample warming activity as the wind whipped over the water, and inside the entries of the winners of the rivers and fishing-themed Washington County Student Art Contest stood on display. The contest, which had 265 entries from local students K-12, crossed all mediums and delivered a striking net of budding talent.


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