1. Patrolling the hump

     

    by V. Paul Reynolds

    At the T-dock, where Diane and I winter over on a houseboat in the Florida Keys, the word was spreading fast. The black fin tuna were hitting well out on the “hump.”  The “hump” is a stretch of water about 15 miles offshore from where we live in Islamorada. It is the edge of the Gulf Stream.

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  2. Now is the time to remove browntail caterpillars

    Entomologists from the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry remind you that now is the time to remove browntail caterpillars from trees that are accessible. Browntail caterpillars cause a poison ivy-like rash and they are impacting a broad swath of Maine. Contact with this caterpillar’s hairs can cause severe reactions for some individuals.

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  3. It’s planting time somewhere….

    WWII veteran Mac McKean of Machias can’t resist growing seedlings wherever he goes, and so he planted a small greenhouse of tomatoes while visiting his son in Pensacola, Florida. McKean said he plans to return to Machias to get his Court Street greenhouse up and running again just after his 98th birthday in April. Photo courtesy Tom McKean

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  4. Hoops for a cause

    Arise Addiction Recovery hosted its First Annual 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament on Sunday, Feb. 25.  The Splash Bros. team took home Sunday’s trophy using the mad skills they bring to their day jobs on the UMM Clipper men’s basketball team. From left to right, Maurius Turner, Dylan Brown, Dante Ramos. Photo courtesy Arise Addiction Recovery

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  5. King tunes into issues at Machias roundtable

    by Ruth Leubecker

    From food as medicine to stumbling blocks ranging from transportation to isolation, Sen. Angus King presided over an informative listening session in town last week.

    The Community Caring Collaborative (CCC), the Sunrise County Economic Council (SCEC) and Downeast Community Partners welcomed King to the “listening session” encompassing a wide range of topics ranging from the everyday struggles of seniors to food insecurities and advocacy support.

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  6. Downeasters to descend on Augusta in support of prerelease bill

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    In the wake of LePage’s sudden closure of the Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) on Friday, Feb. 9, a new public Facebook page has become the rallying point for a grassroots effort to save the prison. The “Save Downeast Correctional Facility” page is run by Melissa Hinerman of Machiasport and has more than 3,500 members.

    This week, a group of DCF supporters are using the page to coordinate travel to Augusta for a public hearing on Wednesday, Feb. 28 at 11 a.m.

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  7. 350 Downeast encourages small steps for big change

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    There are high levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) in earth’s atmosphere. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), carbon dioxide levels fluctuated between 180 and 280 parts per million (ppm) for the 800,000 years leading up to the industrial revolution, when mankind began burning fossil fuels. Today, they’re over 400 ppm. 

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  8. Will Jonesport’s Ice Hill South be abandoned?

    by Nancy Beal

    The steep, short lane that leads from Jonesport’s Main Street to Moosabec Reach between the bridge to Beals Island and the old O.W. & B.S. Look wharf where Eddie Look buys lobsters is back on the selectmen’s to-do list. Last fall, year-round resident David Wardwell asked that the town either plow the lane or pay him a stipend for private service.

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  9. MDOT schedules Machias dike hearing March 13

    The Maine Department of Transportation has tentatively scheduled a public hearing to discuss the future of the Machias dike.

    The hearing will take place at the University of Maine at Machias’ Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, March 13 beginning at 6 p.m. All interested parties are invited to attend.

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  10. WaCo Democrats to caucus March 4 in five locations

    by Nancy Beal

    The Washington County Democrats will hold caucuses throughout the county on Sunday, March 4. The purpose of the caucuses is to elect delegates and alternates to the state convention (May 18-20 in Lewiston), to elect local Democratic party leaders, to learn about the 2018 races, and to boost grassroots efforts. Each town will caucus on its own but, because of the size of the Sunrise County, caucus goers will gather at five centralized locations throughout the county.

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  11. Rep. Tuell rejects proposal to close Washington County jail

    Earlier this month, the LePage administration released a proposal that would close jails in Androscoggin, Franklin, Oxford, Piscataquis, and Washington counties, as facilities around the state grapple with shortages in the number of available beds for inmates.

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  12. WA Players to perform at Easport Arts Center March 6, 7

    The WA Players one-act play  performance this year is the drama  “Things Fall (Meanwhile)” by Barton Bishop.   This drama/comedy is an intersection of stories involving a street performer killed by a falling air conditioner, a music prodigy losing her ability to hear, a young woman accidentally throwing a javelin and impaling a hiker on a tree, and a man who suddenly begins to speak only gibberish. All of this unique and thought provoking tale happens in about 35 minutes.  

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  13. Steuben library announces Barnes to be March artist

    Sharon Barnes will be the March featured artist at the Henry D. Moore Library in Steuben. The show will be available for viewing during library hours and there will be an artist reception 6-7:30 p.m. Monday, March 5.

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  14. Guest Voice Opinion - Acting to create a prerelease center in Washington County

    by Sen. Joyce Maker

    In the Gospel of Matthew, an alternative for “an eye for an eye” is given by Jesus: “You have heard that it was said, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” But I say to you, do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

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  15. Editor's Desk

    Driving through New Hampshire last week, my husband was surprised to hear a familiar voice coming over a local radio station. Representative Will Tuell was on NHPR discussing the closure of the Downeast Correctional Facility. We now know that NHPR was airing an interview done with AJ Higgins in Maine, but our neighbors in New Hampshire aren’t the only ones covering this local story. 

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  16. Letter to the Editor - Former inmate speaks up for DCF

    I was an inmate at Downeast Correctional Facility (DCF) for 15 months after a difficult and embarrassing time in my life for felony drug charges. As my life crashed down around me and I made my way to Windham then classed into minimum DCF, I started my actual recovery there after a year in rehab on bail. I turned myself in and it began.

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  17. Opinion - Candidate Thibodeau’s statement on prison closure

    The Governor’s decision to shut down the Downeast Correctional Facility (DECF) is economically devastating and short-sighted. 

    In 2016, a promise was made to the people of Washington County by this administration when the legislature approved the Government Facilities Bond that mandated a correctional facility be open in Washington County. Today, I believe that promise, embodied in law, has been broken. 

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  18. Cherryfield and Milbridge news

     

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  19. Columbia News

    Our February school vacation has come to an end. I traveled to Boston on Saturday Feb. 17 to visit my daughter Diadem and her family. I was met at the bus station by the whole family with a gigantic balloon saying Happy Birthday on it. The grandchildren rushed to me and threw themselves into my arms with hugs and kisses. What a surprise that was.

     They gathered me up and we headed to their home in Dorchester that was about 10 minutes away.  After having lunch, to the delight of the children, we all went bowling.   Needless to say, we all had a great time.

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  20. Wesley News

    Carole had her daughter Lennea and her husband to come to visit for a few days week of Feb. 12th, They had a nice visit and Lennea even visited Juskidden Acres for some lotions to take back to Massachusetts. 

    Dick and Rese D. donated some more returnable bottles to the Historical Society. Thank you both.

    Linda T. and Barb D. have new residents trying to move into their areas. Barb has trapped one rather large northern rat and the Tapleys have shot one of a family of field rats. They both hope to see them move one. 

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  21. Community Calendar

    Upcoming events

    • • • • • •

    Monthly Play Reading with Stage East, free. March 3, 2-4 p.m.,

    • • • • • •

    Narraguagus Snowmobile Club- The Narraguagus Snowmobile Club will hold their next public bean & casserole supper on March 3 at the club house in Cherryfield at 5:30 p.m.

    • • • • • •

    Sunday Afternoons at the EAC presents the Shead High School Music Program with jazz and rock music and discussion, free.March 4, 3 p.m.

    • • • • • •

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  22. JHS 2018 County Basketball Champions

     

    Pictured is the 2018 Lubec JHS girls’ basketball champions. Members include front left-right: Ayla Zanoni, Rachel Wry, Kristin Grant, Addison Williams, Ashlyn Dinsmore, Trinity Jones, and Chloe Savage. Back left-right: Coach Shawn Tinker, Jessica Greene, Isabella Seeley, Kaitlyn Smith, Summer Sizemore Crystal Ann Kloeber, Kelci Williams, Skyler Tinker, Kristen Smith, and Veda Zanoni. Missing Coach Jordan Tinker.

     

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  23. Bulldog/Royals advance

     

    by Phil Stuart

    The sixth-seeded Machias Bulldogs and number two Jonesport-Beals Royals both advanced to the Northern Maine Class D semifinals and are scheduled to play each other for the third time this season. 

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  24. Grant joins 1,000 point club

    by Phil Stuart

    Machias Bulldogs Senior Guard Jordan Grant of West Lubec scored his 1,000th career point on February 2nd at Narraguagus High School in Harrington.

    Grant, a four-year starter for the Bulldogs, burned the nets for 35 points as Jim Getchell’s club improved to 10-7 with a game to go in a 66-56 win.

    The Lubec senior seemed to have his best games against the Knights this season with 32 points in a 69-65 victory over Ryan Fletcher’s club in Machias December 21st.

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  25. Juanita Brooks Stephens - Machias

    Juanita Brooks Stephens, born November 25, 1918, passed away January 27, 2018, at the Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick, Maine. The cause was pneumonia. 

    Juanita Stephens had lived in Machias with her husband James since 1996. After he died of Alzheimer’s in 2000, she stayed in their early 1900’s Victorian-style house where she painted in her studio until her health started declining last year. While living in Maine, she exhibited in art shows in Eastport and Machias, and one of her still-lifes hangs in the vestibule of the Centre Street Congregational Church. 

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  26. Verrill “Sonny” Worcester - Jonesport

    Verrill “Sonny” Worcester passed away at his home on Monday, February 19, 2018 at age 88 . Sonny was born to Erma and Verrill Worcester in Jonesport  Maine on March 18, 1929. He graduated Columbia Falls High School with the class of ’47 and  married Marilyn (Diz) Worcester in September 1950. He was a loving husband and father and a doting Grampie and “PA” to his large family.    

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  27. Delbert Lester Caler - Harrington

    Delbert Lester Caler, 62, resident of Harrington finished his earthly journey on the afternoon tide of February 14, 2018, doing what he loved and had since the age of nine — clamming. 

    In 1996, Delbert started a wild animal butchering business, which in later years became a state tagging station, too. Delbert loved to hunt. He enjoyed the success stories of others, which replaced his own hunting as his business grew.

    Delbert was married to the love of his life, Kathy Lynn (Perry) Caler for 22 ½ years. He has left her broken hearted.

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  28. Calais Celtic Concert series opens 7th season with award-winning Skipper’s Alley

    Tom McDonald of Calais Celtic Concerts stands holding a plaque of recognition

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  29. Fun at Washington Academy Field Day

    Sophomores Gregory Moulton and Micah Vose participating in the Beach Ball Relay. Photo by Hannah Sprague

    Students cheering on their classmates during the Field Day/Pep Rally. (from left to right) Natalia Kempthorne-Curiel and Paige Bell.  Photo by Jocelyn Scoville

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  30. Manhunt on Main Street

    State Police surrounded Sunrise Cannabis in Machias on Thursday, Feb. 15, looking for its owner, Robert Boggia. He was not located until the next day. See article page 2. Photo courtesy Jacob Berry

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  31. Embattled prison embroiled in further hurdles

    by Ruth Leubecker

    With battle lines drawn and legal entanglements taking center stage, the Downeast Correctional Facility remains alive to fight another day.

    “Odds are it will change 10 more times before the week is out,” said Rep. Will Tuell on Valentine’s Day. “Washington County is behind this facility. We need it.”

    “We’ll continue to fight on multiple fronts,” said area resident Andrea Guerra, in Augusta for the most recent hearing. “This is not just about jobs.”

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  32. Candidate Garrett Mason speaks to WaCo Republicans

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    Sen. Garrett Mason (R-Lisbon Falls) is the first person on the Republican ballot for Maine’s 2018 gubernatorial election. “If the election were held today, I would win in a landslide because I’m the only person on the ballot,” quipped Mason, who currently serves as Maine’s Senate Majority Leader. 

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  33. Machias, Calais Rite Aids to become Walgreens

    by  Lura Jackson

    Pharmacy customers at Rite Aid were among the first to be informed that the Calais and Machias stores will be undergoing a transformation into a Walgreens over the next few years. The pharmacy itself is already mostly integrated into the Walgreens system, while the rest of the store will be overhauled by 2020. The local stores are among 1,932 Rite Aid stores that were acquired in January of 2018 by Walgreens as part of a major corporate acquisition totaling $4.4 billion.

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  34. Jonesport to explore purchase of campground

    by Nancy Beal

    Three members of Jonesport’s working waterfront access and harbor committees attended the selectmen’s Feb. 14 meeting to discuss an offer from the Sawyer family to sell the town the campground property on Henry Point. In response to an inquiry from the town, the Sawyers recently wrote to the town, offering to sell the seven-acre mini-peninsula for $450,000.

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  35. Manhunt ends with arrest of local business owner

    by Sarah Craighead Dedmon

    On Thursday, Feb. 15, Maine State Police cruisers could be seen parked outside Sunrise Cannabis on Machias’ Main Street, looking for its owner, Robert Boggia. They were also seen pulling over vehicles along Route One and at the base of Scotts Hill Road in East Machias. 

    The same afternoon, public information officer Stephen McCausland issued an alert titled “Whiting man wanted,” and asking for the public’s help in locating the 32-year old business owner.

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  36. Machias native supports one of the Navy’s most versatile combat ships

    by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class James H. Green, Navy Office of Community Outreach

    A 1996 Machias Memorial High School, 2004 Maine Maritime Academy and 2010 Naval Post Graduate School graduate and Machias native is serving in the U.S. Navy as part of the staff aboard Surface Division 11, supporting one of the country’s most versatile combat ships.

    Lt. Cmdr. Justin Hayward is a material and maintenance officer serving in N4 at Surface Division 11 in San Diego.

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  37. Body of local clammer recovered

    The body of 62-year old Delbert Caler of Harrington was discovered Thursday, Feb. 15 by a local fisherman working with Maine Marine Patrol to locate the shellfish harvester, missing since Wednesday, Feb. 14. 

     Marine Patrol received a report this morning at approximately 6 a.m. that Caler, a licensed shellfish harvester, was missing after he had gone clamming last evening.

    The search, coordinated by the Maine Marine Patrol, began immediately and involved many locals searching on the water and shore, as well as members of the Maine Warden Service.

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  38. Guest Voice - Opinion - Now is the time for action

    by Sen. Mark Dion

    Prayers are not enough, and never will be, for the children and their families who have been irreparably shattered by these acts of senseless slaughter.

    We can no longer stand aside, using the excuse that it is not “the time” to take action.

    We cannot be turned away or silenced by those who claim we are playing politics on the graves of the murdered.

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  39. Editor's Desk

    I recently interviewed a young man who is a recovered drug addict. He said, “You’ll never understand addiction as a problem until you understand addiction as a  solution.

    When an addict starts using drugs, he said, they’re making a rational decision in the moment. This, of course, is true for every poor decision any one of us has ever made. 

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  40. Letter to the Editor - Renaming the FBI

    The fabled and feared Federal Bureau of Investigation should soon have a new nickname, perhaps courtesy of POTUS: the Failing Bureau of Investigation, or possibly the Fake Bastion of Integrity. 

    Jon Reisman

    Cooper

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  41. Letter to the Editor - Children’s dental program

     

     An overdue note to thank you for the feature article you did on the Children’s program a couple of weeks ago. The part about its inception warmed my heart to see that someone appreciated how hard Kathy worked to get the it up and running. Those were hardworking and fun days for Kathy in the program, and her fondness for the kids and helping them get dentally healthy is reflected in the fact that we still act as a storage depot for their dental  supplies in our office basement. We are glad that Theresa is doing a fine job of continuing the legacy.

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  42. Letter to the Editor - AG Mills addresses the prison closure

    “The action of the Governor and the Department of Corrections flies in the face of the clear intent of the Legislature as expressed in the biennial budget, in statute and in the deliberations of the Joint Standing Committee on Criminal Justice and Public Safety.

    The Legislature has every right to protect an institution which not only provides needed rehabilitation services to persons convicted of crimes but is also an economic mainstay of one of Maine’s poorest counties.

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  43. No frolicking, but foraging for those fruits of February

    By now woodpiles have diminished, days are noticeably longer and the holiday season has faded into a bittersweet memory. It’s February, the shortest month, and the only one bisected by affairs of the heart. And, arguably, housing the most offbeat collection of observances in the entire calendar year. 

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  44. State of the Union attendees: Movers, shakers and Senator Maker

    by Sen. Angus King 

    Even after five years as a Senator, there are some things you just never get used to, and the State of the Union is right there at the top of that list. This yearly tradition isn’t about the President – it’s about the presidency. It’s an honor to be in the House chamber for this annual event, and fortunately I’m given the opportunity to share this unique privilege with one guest.

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  45. Guest Voice - Opinion - LePage’s actions are despotic, not democractic

    by Zak Ringelstein

    Here’s what really happened at Downeast Correctional Facility in Machiasport at 4:30 a.m. last Friday morning: at the command of Governor Paul Lepage, state troopers abruptly arrived and hauled 63 inmates out of their beds and onto buses, taking 39 jobs of hard-working Washington County residents with them.

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