Tag Archives: Aroostook County

Two Aroostook County Democrats want LePage investigated over blogger’s allegations

Spotted this story the other day and wanted to share it.

Two Democratic lawmakers from Aroostook County are asking the Legislature’s Government Oversight Committee to investigate whether Gov. Paul LePage threatened to withhold state funds in 2013 from the World Acadian Congress unless its president stepped down.

Reps. Roland “Danny” Martin of Sinclair and Robert Saucier of Presque Isle sent a letter Tuesday requesting an investigation by the Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability, the watchdog agency that reports to the oversight committee.

Their letter details allegations in a blog post last week by liberal activist Mike Tipping of the Maine People’s Alliance that LePage said he would withhold $500,000 in state funding for the 2014 World Acadian Congress unless then-board president Jason Parent stepped down.

The World Acadian Congress is an international festival celebrating Acadian culture that takes place every five years, most recently in 2014 at locations in northern Maine and eastern Canada.

Read more of this Portland Press Herald story by Eric Russell: http://www.pressherald.com/2015/07/28/democratic-lawmakers-want-lepage-investigated-over-alleged-abuse-of-power/

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‘Months later, I realized what we did’: Former Loring airman turns tale of daring mid-air rescue into book, movie | Bangor Daily News

I grew up in Portage, a little over an hour’s drive from where Loring Air Force Base was located. I recall seeing B-52s on training missions flying by overhead. This is a cool story of bravery.

Ron Craft of Ansonia, Connecticut, says he is neither a writer nor a public speaker, but his passion to share the story of an air rescue he witnessed as a 23-year-old stationed at Loring Air Force Base in Limestone has compelled him to be both.

It is the story of heroic valor executed with such calm competence that only in retrospect did Craft recognize the significance of what he had observed.

“I was inexperienced,” he said in a recent interview. “I didn’t know that they don’t do this on a regular basis. Everyone did his job professionally, as though rehearsed. I’m thinking, ‘Man, we have a cool job.’ But this is not in any manuals. Months later, I realized what we did.”

And 31 years later, he is translating his admiration for military bravery into a book and a movie about the experience, with help from California-based screenwriter and producer Mark Roemmich, president and CEO of Noble House Entertainment. Titled “Hell Over High Water,” the project represents the culmination of 12 years of effort by Craft to record his memory of a dramatic mid-air maneuver that changed his life.

Read more of this story by Kathryn Olmstead in the Bangor Daily News.

Potato Harvest Schools Maine Teens in Hard Work | The Associated Press via ABC News

A fall rite of passage in The County. I did this as a kid. Crazy hard work for just a few pennies a barrel. Family legend says that my grandfather on my dad’s side could stack three full barrels of potatoes one on top of the other single-handedly. – Keith

In the gentle hills of northern Maine, far from the rocky coastline and lighthouses, teenagers trade warm classrooms for cold potato fields every fall, just as they have for generations.

Schools shut down — sometimes for weeks at a time — while their students haul in the harvest or monitor conveyor belts for potatoes that don’t measure up as farmers rush to fill their stores before the ground freezes.

But as farm operations consolidate and heavy machinery make them more efficient, farmers wonder how much longer there will be a place for the harvest breaks that as little as 20 years ago saw kids hand-picking potatoes for 50 cents a barrel.

“Eventually it’ll probably fade away,” said Wayne Garrison, the 72-year-old co-owner of Garrison Farms, which hired eight high school students to help harvest its 700 acres of potatoes. “I’d hate to see it go, I really would.”

Up until the 1940s, Maine was the nation’s potato capital and Aroostook County — a place so vast that it’s about the same size as the combined states of Connecticut and Rhode Island — is still home to roughly 50,000 acres of potato farms. Nearly a dozen high schools here emptied for this year’s harvest — fewer than the old days, when virtually all schools shut down.

Read the rest of this story by David Sharp of The Associated Press.

Photo of moose cow, calf wins Aroostook County Tourism contest | Bangor Daily News

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Paul Pierce of Mars Hill has been chosen as the overall winner of the Aroostook County Tourism summer photo contest for his picture of a moose cow and calf.

Other category winners include Tracey Ackerson of Woodland for the scenic views category, Johnnie Cancelarich of Presque Isle for outdoor recreation, Fred Grant of Houlton for cities and towns and Lori Prosser of Houlton for festivals and events.

All winning entries are available to view on the website at www.visitaroostook.com and the Aroostook County Tourism Facebook page.

Click to read more on the story in the Bangor Daily News on the photo contest.

Moose welcome to visit anytime | Bangor Daily News

Wouldn’t you know. A moose walks into my front yard and I can’t find my camera.

The little case is empty. Where did I put it?

I gaze at the huge animal munching on the leaves of the apple trees outside my kitchen window. I guess I will just have to enjoy watching it.

No. I will use my big single-lens reflex camera that has been idle so long the battery is probably dead. I fish the camera out of its bag and turn it on.

“No card.”

I dig a memory card out of the bag, plug it in and move to the dining room window for a better view. The moose slides her mouth along one branch after the other, munching on the leaves that don’t fall to the ground.

Click to read more of this commentary by Kathryn Olmstead, former University of Maine associate dean and associate professor of journalism living in Aroostook County, published in The Bangor Daily News.

Drug- and alcohol-related crimes dominate Aroostook County indictments | Bangor Daily News

Drug- and alcohol-related crimes dominate Aroostook County indictments | Bangor Daily News

 

Ashland police chief, second victim in moose accident remain hospitalized | Bangor Daily News

EAGLE LAKE, Maine — Two men who suffered serious injuries in a moose crash on Wednesday morning remain in a Bangor hospital, one in critical condition.

Cyr Martin, 46, one of the victims and also the chief of the Ashland Police Department, is in fair condition at Eastern Maine Medical Center.

Melford Bouchard, 70, of Newburgh, is in critical condition at the hospital, a spokesperson said Friday afternoon.

Click to read more of the story by Jen Lynds in the Bangor Daily News.

For border towns, attacks changed a way of life | Bangor Daily News

After the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, changes at Maine’s border crossings were not subtle. More officers were added at ports of entry, inspectors became more vigilant and, in some cases, new ports were constructed.

Although less visible, the division of cross-border communities is one of the long-lasting impacts of the attacks and the heightened security and border restrictions that resulted.

Before 9/11, the border between Maine and Canada was more a line on a map than a barrier. Border agents from both countries often simply waved through the familiar faces they saw frequently crossing the international boundary. Residents of Aroostook County attended churches in New Brunswick. Canadians bought cheaper gas in The County. Socializing with friends and family on the other side of the border was routine.

Reports shortly after 19 hijackers flew planes into the World Trade Center and Pentagon said some of the men had entered the U.S. through Canada. Although not true (the hijackers flew into the U.S. from Europe, Asia and the Middle East and had visas issued by the U.S. government), work to better secure the border soon was under way.

While millions of federal dollars have been spent on improving infrastructure — such as building new crossing facilities in Calais, Van Buren and Forest City — the change that has most affected Aroostook County residents is the requirement for a passport, passport card or NEXUS card, an alternative offered through U.S. Customs and Border Protection, to cross the border.

Click to read the rest of the story by Jen Lynds, Diana Bowley, and Sharon Kiley Mack in the Bangor Daily News, along with video.

 

Friends of Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge putting on annual fishing derby | Aroostook Republican and News via The Bangor Daily News

Friends of Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge putting on annual fishing derby | Aroostook Republican and News via The Bangor Daily News

Former Aroostook County resident returns to perform hit play inspired by life in northern Maine | Bangor Daily News

Former Aroostook County resident returns to perform hit play inspired by life in northern Maine | Bangor Daily News

Federal government programs shun the potato — erroneously, say legislators | Bangor Daily News

Federal government programs shun the potato — erroneously, say legislators | Bangor Daily News

Mushers embark on grueling race | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram

Mushers embark on grueling race | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.

Aroostook County keeps biathlon buzz alive: Organizers of World Cup tour event in Presque Isle, Fort Kent seek status as Olympic Training Center | Maine Sunday Telegram

Aroostook County keeps biathlon buzz alive: Organizers of World Cup tour event in Presque Isle, Fort Kent seek status as Olympic Training Center | Maine Sunday Telegram

 

World Cup Biathlon in Fort Kent

Biathlon memories stick as athletes part | Bangor Daily News

World Cup Biathlon: One fantastic finish | Portland Press Herald

Hall-of-Famer Pippen enjoys biathlon baptism| Bangor Daily News

World Cup Biathlon moves to Fort Kent | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram

World Cup Biathlon moves to Fort Kent | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.

WORLD CUP NO. 8

WHERE: 10th Mountain Ski Center, Fort Kent

THURSDAY: Men’s 10K sprint

FRIDAY: Women’s 7.5K sprint

SATURDAY: Men’s 12.5K pursuit and women’s 10K pursuit

SUNDAY: Men’s 15K mass start and women’s 12.5K mass start

Nordic skiing enjoys resurgence in northern Maine | Bangor Daily News

Nordic skiing enjoys resurgence in northern Maine | Bangor Daily News

Acadian Congress chooses executive director | Bangor Daily News

Acadian Congress chooses executive director | Bangor Daily News

Baldacci awards $100K to 4 storm-damaged counties | Bangor Daily News

Baldacci awards $100K to 4 storm-damaged counties | Bangor Daily News.

Aroostook County native boosts education for NMCC wind power students | Bangor Daily News

Aroostook County native boosts education for NMCC wind power students | Bangor Daily News.

State, Roxanne Quimby agree to Millinocket-area land deal | Bangor Daily News

State, Roxanne Quimby agree to Millinocket-area land deal | Bangor Daily News.