Coming Sewage Treatment Plant improvements
Dewatering is the key function in changing Bethel sewage to pure water. Rob Gundersen showed me how the next step in plant upgrading will see the installation of a new electrically operated, German designed dewatering system inside a new building within the Bethel plant’s grounds. When the building is completed during the next twelve months, Mr. Gundersen plans to also install photovoltaic solar panels on the south facing roof of the new building to help offset electric costs from operating the new dewatering system.
Right now the majority of sewage passing through the system is dewatered by beds of phragmite reeds that absorb nutrients from the sewage as the major dewatering step. The end result of this process is an accumulation of compost sludge and of course nearly pure water. The compost is a very effective gardening product that is available at the sewer plant.
Before the clean water passes into a pipe and into the Androscoggin, it is channeled through concrete canal structure after being treated with chlorine. During this flow process additional sludge particles are separated in the final dewatering step. After transiting the canal, clean water flows by pipe into the river.
Just prior to exiting the canal system an automatic sampling/test process takes place where a permanent record is stored and transmitted into the plant’s computer management network.
1953 Headline News – 60 Years Ago
“Bazaar Nets $750 in Full Day Program”
Last Saturday proved to be a fine day for the 5th annual Bazaar which netted approximately $600 for the Crescent Park School Grounds Improvement and $150 for next year’s 4th of July celebration, an approximate total of $750.
Some highlights of the day were: The outstanding parade float was the United Nations “Peace for our children” which showed many hours of labor and time put into it.
Following the parade the supper called the crowd and over 400 were served a delicious baked bean supper. This was put on by the Men’s Brotherhood, Congregational Guild, PTA and Girl Scouts.
A corral was erected on the Common where the Happy Herdsmen 4-H Club exhibited the fine animals they are raising the year. The group offered dairy products for sale and did a rushing business throughout the afternoon and evening.
Music for the dance was furnished by Doris and Lawrence Lord, Charles Heino, Bob Tifft, Angelo Onofrio, Marko Lavorgna with Keith Bartlett as vocalist.
A new member of our group was the Bethel Theater which had set up a shooting gallery by the theatre with free passes donated by the theatre as prizes. They proved a very good addition to the Bazaar, and very popular with the crowd until a late hour Saturday.
Remembering Sam Chapman
About 12 years or so ago, Sam and his crew did a tree removal job for us that included old hard pines and an ash tree that had died. Our TV cable ran through the branches of the pines nearest the road. In one case a tree branch had grown around the cable. Sam’s solution: cut branch on both sides of cable before cutting down tree. Well that piece of a branch is still there around the cable.
Early last month, I happened to run into Sam and Kathy at the new Bait, Tackle and More store. Sam asked me then if the branch was still in the cable.
Found: an Artist Bridge painting at NABOS
After going through three art shows last week without seeing a single covered bridge painting, it was pleasing to find one Saturday at the newly relocated NABOS store. It is a laser print of the original by Wendy Cannon of Saco, titled “The Artist’s Bridge.” While chatting with Melanie Carver who was holding the fort at NABOS Saturday, she said that she thought they had others at the store as well.
We thought that the new store layout gave shoppers a better opportunity to see the great variety of stock at the store. Melanie said that shoppers who are visiting Bethel quite often come in looking for something to take with them from Bethel.
Outside the new beds of greens and herbs are getting to the ready-to-pick stage. If you have bought a lobster from the next door Bait, Tackle & More store, then fresh greens for a salad to go with the lobster are at NABOS ready for the picking.
Hiking, Supper and Speech at Bethel Outdoor Adventure
Sunday’s supper gathering at Bethel Outdoor Adventure turned into a welcome and celebration for Roger from Winthrop, Maine, and Roni from Wayne, New Jersey; they had just completed the Mahoosuc Notch to Route 26 on the Appalachian Trail. Some accomplishment: Roger is blind; he hiked with two walking poles and is also deaf and Roni is deaf. Jeff Parsons gave a speech of welcome, recognition to those campers and staff that had helped support the trek and kudos to all who had participated including campers who had tried to find a way to drive Jeff’s jeep with 215,000 miles on it up to a meeting point on the trail. “Molly” Siegel and friends from the BOA end of things helped in trail support as well; Molly was at Sunday night’s supper gathering. Read next week’s Bethel news for more names and details.
Saturday I met a very pleasant young man at the village sun dial who asked to take my shopping cart back to the store for me. He was part of a hiking group who were loading up before continuing on. When I asked where he was heading he said Georgia – Springer Mountain. I asked him, “All the way”. And he said, “Yes.” They were pleased to have a sunny day for a change.
Oxford County Mineral and Gem Show at Crescent Park School
This year’s show at the Crescent Park gym seemed to be a little more active than previous shows at Telstar; was it due to a slightly smaller room that gave the impression of a larger crowd. On entering the show, the first specimen to catch our eye was a beautiful, large cluster of amethyst crystals. This exhibit was found in Sweden, Maine at the Saltman Quarry and displayed by the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum. The MMGM also exhibited displays in the hallway outside of the main showroom.
Sunday River Gems and Norm Davis were two other major local exhibitors/vendors. This year Mr. Davis is the Vice President of the Oxford County Mineral and Gem Association. Eleanor Davis is the Librarian.
Beth Bean, Sunday River Gems, keeps very busy with setups at virtually all the local area “days;” this is the 21st year in business for her gem store. Mrs. Bean told me that the store sees probably its greatest number of visitors during the ski season but that summer vacationers, although fewer in numbers, are usually above average spenders.
The Sunday River Gem store has somewhat of an historic background itself. Part of the building was once sitting about where the Sunday River Inn’s front yard is today. It had been the office building for the Latchford and Bryant lumber mill company. Although the mill closed about 1926, I can remember the building being there at least into the 1940s. As a youngster I rode by it on the way to my grandmother’s Red House.
18th Annual Androscoggin River Source to the Sea Trek
High water on the Androscoggin caused some changes in the early part of this year’s trek plans. On Saturday, July 13, trekkers were to meet at the Steamer Diamond Landing above Errol Dam. Included with the paddling program, Janet Willie of Bethel was due to present “Yoga for Paddlers.”
Right now the canoe trekkers are due to arrive in late afternoon Saturday, Mollyockett Day, at the Bethel Outdoor Adventure. The Gilead to Bethel leg will include Maine Adaptive Ski & Recreation paddlers.
Agenda for the July 15 Bethel Selectmen
There are not any really hot items as far as I can see on the agenda except a decision of awarding the job for manufacture of directional signs. Bids were due last Thursday but the agenda indicates no bids were received.
Other items include approval of the FY 2014 Airport Budget and award of FY ‘14 paving bids; a Conservation Commission appointment; and a memorandum of understanding with Bethel Water Distinct regarding use of the land abutting Bingham Forest. There are eight other administrative items.
For photos accompanying this week’s news see the online Bethel Journals most recent news page on line at http://www.thebetheljournals.info.