Category archives for: Swampdonkeys, Candlepins, And Such

Thirty-One Teams Vote to Make Patriots Punt on Third Down

patriots ravensIf you can’t beat ‘em, change a rule to stop ‘em. On Wednesday, the NFL did.  On the final day of the owners meetings in Phoenix, teams voted to eliminate the unconventional eligible/ineligible receiver play that the Patriots used to change the complexion of the AFC divisional playoff game against the Baltimore Ravens.  Under the change, “an offensive player wearing the number of an eligible pass receiver who reports as ineligible must line up within the tackle box.” If a team was to use the same play as the Patriots did against the Ravens, it would get flagged for illegal substitution and lose five yards.  Atlanta Falcons president Rich McKay, who serves on the Competition Committee, announced the rule change on Wednesday.  Against the Ravens, with the Patriots trailing by two touchdowns in the third quarter, running back Shane Vereen was declared ineligible but lined up in the slot, away from the four offensive linemen and tight end Michael Hoomanawanui. Vereen was announced as ineligible, and when the ball was snapped, he went backwards as Hoomanawanui ran straight ahead. The Patriots ran the play twice and earned two first downs, much to the ire of Ravens coach John Harbaugh. (read more at the Providence Journal)

Pro Bowlers Exiled to Portland. Advised to Buck Up, Man, and Not Drag Negative Energy in to the Tournament

the big lebowskiPORTLAND — The big rollers are coming to town, courtesy of the Professional Bowlers Association, and Charlie Mitchell is ready for them. “We always knew (Bayside Bowl) was special, but to have the PBA understand that is a very nice feeling,” Mitchell, the bowling center manager, said last week as Bayside Bowl was preparing to host five days of events showcasing the best bowlers in the world. Beginning with a pro-am event Thursday night, the bowling center at 58 Alder St. will be the scene of a unique tour all-star event, followed by a singles tournament, all to be broadcast digitally and on cable by ESPN. PBA Commissioner Tom Clark said Bayside Bowl is ideally suited to show how the sport is changing and reaching a new generation of bowlers. “The leagues that take part there have a great demographic,” Clark said March 20. “People enjoying the game they might not even know it, but what they are doing is cutting edge.” Initial discussions last year centered on bringing a full tour event to the city, with Spare Time Portland on Riverside Street and Easy Day in South Portland possibly hosting qualifying rounds. (read more at the Forecaster)

Kansas City Officially Over Dwayne Bowe

de wayne boweThe Cleveland Browns desperately need receiver help and are getting it with the addition of Dwayne Bowe. The Browns have reached an agreement with Bowe on a two-year deal, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. NFL Network first reported the news. Bowe took to Twitter on Thursday afternoon to express excitement for his “next chapter….Cleveland! Look forward to spending time with the DAWG POUND in the endzone!!” The Kansas City Chiefs released Bowe after eight seasons with the team. Bowe visited Cleveland last week and had a productive meeting with the staff. He has a relationship with general manager Ray Farmer, who previously worked in Kansas City’s personnel department. Bowe and former Miami Dolphins receiver Brian Hartline add veteran experience to the Browns’ pass-catching lineup, but the only receiver on the roster with more than two touchdowns last season is Travis Benjamin (three). Josh Gordon, whom the Browns suspended for the last game of 2014 and is suspended for all of 2015, welcomed fellow wide receiver Bowe to Cleveland via Twitter. (read more at ESPN)

Due to All That Global Warming, Maine’s Maple Festivals to Be Integrated With Fourth of July Parades

maine sugar houseIt may be Maine’s sweetest Sunday of the year, even if the syrup isn’t flowing. More than 100 sugar houses across the state will open their doors to the public Sunday as part of the 32nd Annual Maine Maple Sunday. Visitors will be treated to demonstrations in syrup production, sugar bush tours and enough sweets to make a dentist cringe. There will be everything that is needed for a fun day out with the family. But with just days to go, there just might not be much sap. “We haven’t got anything,” said Sherry Wilson, of Wilson Family Maple Syrup at 652 Benton Road in Albion. “We’ll still be open.” The persistent cold weather, coupled with regular cloudy weather and wind, means that the maple trees around the state are continuing their winter slumber and holding tight to the sap that syrup producers boil into sugar. Cold temperatures this week, including temperatures on Sunday that are expected to stay below freezing, mean that many sugar houses will spend Maple Sunday boiling water rather than sap. (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Builder of Eco-Friendly House Say He Briefly Considered Installing a Door, But Decided He Couldn’t Risk It

ecofriendly house in maineBut while the building’s exterior design may leave some scratching their heads, it’s what goes on inside the house that will turn heads. The building, called the Viridescent House, is the latest addition to the TideSmart Global campus at 380 U.S. Route 1, and it shares the same ambition: sustainability. TideSmart, an eco-friendly marketing firm, last week received its second Excellence Award for best practices in ecological preservation for businesses from regional waste management company ecomaine, for the Viridescent House. TideSmart President and CEO Steve Woods, a Yarmouth resident who is also a columnist for The Forecaster, said the house will be “the most energy-efficient building in all of Maine.” The passive house requires very little energy for heating or cooling the space. The mono-pitched roof is completely covered in solar panels, and the building is oriented towards the sun to maximize solar heat gain. “There’s no boiler, no furnace, no oil, no propane, no natural gas. It all operates off a heat pump,” Woods said. “… Solar panels will generate more energy than the building itself will use.” As a result, the house is considered net positive. (read more at The Forecaster)

FANS OF OXFORD PLAINS DRAGWAY SAY THEY CAN’T WAIT FOR THE SEASON TO START

oxford dragwayOXFORD — If attendance at Sunday’s meeting was any indication, Oxford Plains Dragway is revving up for a spectacular 2015 season. It was standing room only at Oxford’s Anderson Staples American Legion Post 112 on King Street with the roughly 150 people in attendance spilling over into the vestibule. Oxford Plains Dragway owner Jeff Shock and Operations Manager Crystal Lancaster called the meeting to allow drivers and fans alike to air their concerns and have questions answered about the new season. The dragway was closed for the 2014 season by the Mayberry family, which owned it then, because of staffing issues. Some old-time racers offered insight on how things were run at the dragway in the 1970s and ’80s, while others wondered if teens would be able to try their hand at drag racing — with a parent in the car. Lancaster said she’s already approached Oxford Hills Technical School to try to draw in young racing enthusiasts to the eighth mile track and will explore the concept of teen trail runs. (read more at the Advertiser Democrat)

If They’re Not Careful, the Non-Profit Lighthouse Museum Will Have to Start Attracting Visitors to Pay Their Bills

Rockland lighthouse museumROCKLAND, Maine — It is a dark time for the Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland, and the volunteers who run it are desperately hoping to find a clear path through the financial straits that are imperiling the nonprofit’s future. “We’ve been paying as best we can for years,” volunteer board chairman Paul Dilger said of the museum’s efforts to cover bills that include a $3,500 per month mortgage and $3,000 per month to its condominium association. “It’s never been enough. We just can’t sustain it.” The problem really started almost a decade ago, Dilger said, when the museum’s board of directors voted in favor of joining a three-way condominium group to purchase 1 Park Drive in Rockland for the price of $575,000. It was 2007, and the midcoast economic climate was shifting. Credit card giant MBNA, which had owned the downtown building and done some work to upgrade it, initially had intended to let the museum use the space for free. But the company was sold to Bank of America, which offered to sell it to the museum and two other entities instead. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Ringling Brothers to Stop Elephant Acts, Hope Their New ‘Glare at a Mime for 90 Minutes’ Show Will Keep Audiences Enthralled

ringling brothers elephantsPOLK CITY, Fla. — The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus will phase out the show’s iconic elephants from its performances by 2018, telling The Associated Press exclusively that growing public concern about how the animals are treated led to the decision. Executives from Feld Entertainment, Ringling’s parent company, said the decision to end the circus’s century-old tradition of showcasing elephants was difficult and debated at length. Elephants have often been featured on Ringling’s posters over the decades. The decision is being announced Thursday. “There’s been somewhat of a mood shift among our consumers,” said Alana Feld, the company’s executive vice president. “A lot of people aren’t comfortable with us touring with our elephants.” Feld owns 43 elephants, and 29 of the giant animals live at the company’s 200-acre Center for Elephant Conservation in central Florida. Thirteen animals will continue to tour with the circus before retiring to the center by 2018. One elephant is on a breeding loan to the Fort Worth Zoo. Another reason for the decision, company President Kenneth Feld said, was that certain cities and counties have passed “anti-circus” and “anti-elephant” ordinances. (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Organic, Sustainable Dairy Farm Is Looking for a Free-Range, Socially-Responsible Lawyer To Handle Their Multi-Stakeholder, Cruelty-Free Bankruptcy

union maine organic dairy farm bankruptcyPORTLAND, Maine — The dairy farmer who bought cows from a Turner farm damaged by fire in 2013 has filed for bankruptcy about a year after moving those cows to 180 acres at the former Union Fair Farm. Harris Hills Organic Dairy and its owner, Caleb Harris, on Thursday filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which would sell off business and personal assets to settle a portion of an estimated $352,091 in company debt and $676,716 in personal debt. Harris planned to take over the dairy herd of Caldwell Family Farm in Turner in 2013 and, according to a report at that time, was on his way to Maine at the time of the fire. Harris arranged to sell milk to the New Hampshire-based processor Stonyfield before the fire. Iroquois Valley Farms, an Illinois-based food and farmland company, said in a news release in August that it struck an arrangement in early 2014 with Harris and Stonyfield to move the herd to the Union farm as part of a “new project to directly source milk from the farmers.” ( keep reading at the Bangor Daily News)

Tom Brady Casually Mentions To Roger Goodell That There’s Always the Same Amount of Air in the Goddamned Trophy

tom brady wins fourth super bowlGLENDALE, Ariz. — Quarterback Tom Brady won his fourth ring, tossing four touchdown passes to lead the New England Patriots over the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sunday night. The Patriots clinched the game defending their own end zone in the final 30 seconds of the game. The Seahawks got the ball back with 2:02 left and opened with a 31-yard pass down the left sideline from quarterback Russell Wilson to running back Marshawn Lynch. After another first-down conversion on a Wilson pass to Ricardo Lockette, Seahawks wide receiver Jermaine Kearse caught a 33-yard bomb down the right sideline. Going up for the ball with Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler, Kearse tipped the ball and caught it on a second bobble while on his back at the 6-yard line. The Seahawks ran Lynch on first down to reach the 1-yard line and with 25 seconds left. Wilson then fired a slant to Lockette that Butler intercepted. On his 50th pass attempt of the game, Brady tossed an easy 3-yard score to wide receiver Julian Edelman in front of Seahawks reserve cornerback Tharold Simon, and the Patriots reclaimed the lead, 28-24, with 2:02 left in the game. Brady, who was named the game’s MVP, connected on all eight of his passes on the drive that began when the Patriots forced a three-and-out on a 48-second possession by Seattle. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

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