Category archives for: Swampdonkeys, Candlepins, And Such

Local Hipster Pretty Sure English Majors Invented Agriculture About Twenty Years Ago

common ground fairUNITY, Maine — From low-impact forestry to Scottish Highland cattle to contra dancing, the 38th annual Common Ground Country Fair is a celebration of Maine’s rural and agricultural traditions. Tens of thousands are expected to gather this weekend on 50 lush acres in Unity for the three-day fair that captures the essence of Maine and the bounty of the harvest season. “We strive for community and education while highlighting agriculture,” April Boucher, fair director, said. Run by Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, the fair unites leaders in agriculture like Ben Falk, author of “The Resilient Farm and Homestead,” with locals like Lisa Fernandes, who runs The Resilience Hub, a permaculture center in Portland. Both are speaking about permaculture, this year’s theme, which focuses on designing ecological landscape systems that work in harmony with nature to restore balance. As more and more people embrace the do-it-yourself lifestyle across Maine and the country, these age-old practices of homesteading and low-energy use are being re-examined for modern times. (read more at Bangor Daily News)

One Goes Round And Round While Getting Nowhere And Making An Incredible Amount Of Noise. The Other One Is A Race Car

governor lepage NASCARRepublican Gov. Paul LePage on Friday hailed a $50,000 public investment in a NASCAR race car as an effective way to brand Maine to a national audience – if only for one race. Democrats quickly blasted the move as a “monumental waste of taxpayer dollars.” The state of Maine is paying for the branding effort with $15,000 from LePage’s contingency account and $35,000 from the state tourism budget, according to Doug Ray, spokesman for the Department of Economic and Community Development. At a news conference in Portland, state officials and local businesses unveiled the Maine-branded race car, which will be driven by 20-year-old Fort Kent native Austin Theriault in a Sept. 20 NASCAR Nationwide Series race in Kentucky. “Maine” is emblazoned beneath an image of mountainscape, trees and moose on the hood of the blue race car. The driver’s side features a lobster and a lighthouse, while the passenger side features a moose, trees, fall foliage and blueberries. On the rear bumper is an image of a red sign that says “Come in. We’re open.” Both sides feature the “Open for Business” slogan LePage placed on signs near the Maine-New Hampshire border. (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Local Field Hockey Player Tells Her Coach That Shhe Wooodha Scllooored Blut Mikaylerrrr Wnnndddt Pssss

maine field hockeyTURNER — Her shots may not have broken a pane of glass, but neither Leavitt sophomore Allie Belaire, nor coach Wanda ward-McLean cared. “None of her shots were hard shots,” Ward-McLean said. “She just stayed low and was in a good position.” Three of Belaire’s tips and touches beat Maranacook keeper Autumn Munn in the second half and Sadie Royer added another goal in the first half as the host Leavitt Hornets topped the Black Bears 4-0 Thursday in a persistent biting mist. “This gives us some confidence,” Ward-McLean said. “We didn’t have a lot of returning players. We’ve had a couple games in a row now where we’ve scored a few goals, and it has the girls thinking, ‘We can score, we can hold the other team.’ It’s important for us now.” The Hornets lifted their record to 2-1, and have scored 13 goals in two games since a season-opening 4-1 loss against Mt. View. “It was good to poke a few more in there,” Ward-McLean said. “On a day like today, one slip and it’s a tie game. It was nice to get that second and third goal at least.” (read more at the Lewiston Sun Journal)

Coroner Pissed There’s No Box For ‘Trampled By Elephants In Maine’ On The Form

hope elephantsHOPE — A former veterinarian who turned a small farm in midcoast Maine into a sanctuary for two retired circus elephants was killed Tuesday morning when one of the animals apparently stepped on him after he fell in their enclosure. James Laurita, co-founder of Hope Elephants, was found dead inside a corral shortly after he went in to feed the two elephants, Rosie and Opal, around 7 a.m. Knox County Chief Deputy Sheriff Tim Carroll believes Laurita fell into the corral and hit his head on concrete. An autopsy conducted later Tuesday by the state medical examiner concluded that Laurita, 56, died from asphyxiation and multiple fractures resulting from compression of the chest, presumably because one of the giant mammals stepped on him. It was not immediately clear Tuesday what would become of the Hope Elephants organization or the animals themselves in the wake of Laurita’s death. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been called in to investigate, police said. A man who was keeping media away from the facility Tuesday said there is another elephant handler on staff and that an emergency plan is in place to take care of the elephants. The sheriff’s department is still investigating, but has ruled Laurita’s death an accident – one that rocked this rural town in the Camden Hills area of Knox County. (read more at the Portland Press Herald)

Wes Welker Says The Drugs Must Have Belonged To Ty Law’s Cousin

wes welkerENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The Denver Broncos will be without Wes Welker for the first four games of the season, after the NFL said the receiver violated the league’s performance-enhancing drug policy. Normally, the league announces such violations on Mondays. News of Welker’s ban didn’t come down until late Tuesday, after the league offices had closed and the Broncos had already finished drawing up blueprints for their opener against Indianapolis, undoubtedly with Welker playing a prominent role. ESPN first reported Welker’s suspension, saying the violation had to do with amphetamines. Welker told the Denver Post in an email that he was “as shocked as everyone at today’s news.” He noted he’s meticulous about what he puts in his body and would “never knowingly take a substance to gain a competitive advantage in any way.” The 11th-year pro who’s been the NFL’s top slot receiver over the last decade added that he never concerned himself with the league’s drug rules but now realizes those policies “are clearly flawed.” (read more at the Portland Press Herald)

Explorers Discover Primitive And Superstitious Tribespeople Who Believe That Dousing Themselves With Water Will Cure Diseases

ice bucket challenge in maineIn a grainy video posted on Facebook, Jillian St. Louis and Danna Vaughn, two employees of Ken’s Place Seafood Restaurant in Scarborough, shiver and gasp as they drench themselves with a bucket of ice water and dare their co-workers to do the same, vowing to donate 25 cents to ALS research for each “like.” “I thought I was going to be able to avoid it,” said Jen Skinsacos, a bar manager at Ken’s Place and Vaughn’s sister. “And then they called out the entire crew and posted the video on Facebook.”St. Louis and Vaughn are among the latest to join a social media campaign that has gone viral, bringing in celebrities such as Martha Stewart, Justin Timberlake, Matt Lauer and other notables who get soaked on video for a good cause. The videos are aimed at raising awareness and funds to fight amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, a fatal nerve cell disease in the brain and spinal cord that controls voluntary muscle movement. (read more at the Portland Press Herald)

Worst Road In Maine Contest Declared A 14,721-Way Tie

worst road in maineAUGUSTA, Maine — A Camden man who wrote a harrowing account of his trip along Route 15 from Blue Hill to Stonington this spring is the winner of the Worst Road in Maine contest, according to the Maine Better Transportation Association. Gabriel Zacchai’s entry was selected from among eight finalists, Maria Fuentes, the association’s executive director, announced Tuesday. The contest is run by the 700-member association of businesses, municipalities and individuals that advocates for improving Maine’s transportation infrastructure. Zacchai, a Camden National Bank employee, wrote in his entry about the stretch of Route 15 in Hancock County: “As a 42-year-old native Mainer, I can say with absolute certainty that this is THE WORST PAVED ROAD I HAVE EVER TRIED TO MOVE A CAR OVER IN MY LIFE. I THOUGHT THE FRONT END OF THE CAR WAS GONNA COME OFF!” (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Date For Psychic Fair Needs To Be Announced For Some Reason

psychic and paranormal fairePROSPECT, Maine — When Canaan resident Kate Schuyler lost her grandmother recently at the age of 95, she discussed contacting a psychic with her mom because they both still felt their loved one’s presence. “We want to know if she’s around,” she said Saturday while waiting outside the Fort Knox officer’s quarters for a psychic to give her a reading. “She was a very strong person and had a strong presence in our family,” Schuyler said of her grandmother, Mary. She said it must have been fate that she stopped by Fort Knox on Saturday with her husband, Bill, who is from Wyoming and discovered the Psychic and Paranormal Faire. People who believe in the unusual — UFOs, Big Foot, the Loch Ness monster or ghosts — got a chance to get up-close and personal with experts in the field, including psychics, Tarot card readers, two different groups of ghost hunters and authors on the subjects of the supernatural, abnormal and paranormal. The two-day faire also runs from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. (read more at Bangor Daily News)

After 48 Years Of Umpiring, Pittsfield Man Recalls This One Time This One Kid Did That Thing. You Shoulda Seen It

Pittsflied basball umpireRalph Damren doesn’t remember the score of the most exciting baseball games he has umpired — or the names of most of the teams and players. Since first donning his uniform in 1966, he has called thousands of balls and strikes and has worked from the Little League ranks up through semipro ball. Etched in Damren’s mind instead are the memories of the great times he has enjoyed on the field with the many friends he has made along the way. “You do it, at least from my perspective, because it makes you feel young again,” said Damren, who is 68. “You’re working around kids, you’re working a game that you love, and it’s good exercise.” On Thursday, Damren ran onto the field for the first time in 2014 as the base umpire for a Junior American Legion contest at Mahaney Diamond in Orono. It marks the 48th year as an umpire for the Pittsfield native, who sat out the high school season after having hip replacement surgery in February. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Women’s Basketball Coach Has Sassy Haircut

cindy blodgettBOSTON — Cindy Blodgett is returning to the school where her coaching career started. The former All-America guard at the University of Maine has joined first-year head coach Kady Steding’s staff at Boston University, Steding announced Wednesday. Steding and Blodgett are former teammates, having spent the 2000 season together with the Sacramento Monarchs in the WNBA. Blodgett, 38, had spent the last three seasons on the bench as an assistant under Cathy Inglese at the University of Rhode Island. Her tenure ended when URI announced in March that Inglese’s contract was not renewed after five seasons and a dismal 30-115 (.207) combined record. Blodgett had been relieved of her head coaching duties at UMaine in the spring of 2011. Her teams compiled a 24-94 record in four seasons. (read more at Bangor Daily New)

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