By Donald G. Bennett
Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 20, 21 and 22 — “Guys and Dolls” at the Telstar Auditorium, featuring an “All Telstar” cast, crew and pit.
Monday, May 24 at 7 p.m. — the SAD 44 budget vote at the Helen Berry Auditorium at Telstar.
Wednesday, May 26 at 6:30 p.m. — the Bethel Riverside Cemetery Association will hold its annual meeting at the Bethel Historical Society’s Robinson House.
Saturday, May 29 at the Moses Mason House on Mason Street — the Faye Taylor Art Show for SAD 44 students in grades 1-6. Theme this year is winter sports.
May 29th is also Gould Academy commencement day.
Saturday, June 5 at Angevine Park — this year’s Fishing Festival.
Tuesday and Wednesday, June 8 and 9 — town elections and Town Meeting.
Good news for Mt. Abram: The Portland Press Herald reported that Mt. Abram ski area won a grant of $80,000 value in 10 low-energy snowmaking towers. The equipment will come from Snow Economics/HKD Snowmakers of Massachusetts. The grant was awarded by the National Ski Areas Association. In December 1960, Mt. Abram opened for the first time with an event which attracted 250 people — 2010 will be its Golden year.
From the Back Pages: If you missed it, Mahoosuc Realty and Bethel Realty are merging. Bethel Realty announced that it would move its office to the Parkway Professional Building at the end of May. Three very well-known real estate names will be under one roof — Cindy Hiebert, Paula Gillies and Ed Kennett.
New Bethel Hostel Managers: Deb and Dave Doyle are the new managers of the Bethel Hostel in West Bethel. They will continue to run their day care center located in the former Only Place build-ing. Jeff and Patti Parsons are very pleased that the Doyles agreed to take the job. Bethel Hostel offers very economical accommodations that are shared bedrooms and shared baths. The Hostel’s website has excellent photos of the rooms, kitchen and living room. To see the layout online go to www.snowboardinghouse.com/
Physically Active Communities: Wednesday Barbara Russell and Maura Rodway, representing Bethel trails and Bethel’s skateboard park, respectively, attended an Active Communities Confer-ence at the Hilton Garden Inn Riverwatch in Auburn. The conference was sponsored by: the Maine Physical Activity Nutrition and Healthy Weight Program, Maine Department of Transportation, Maine Department of Conservation and the Maine State Planning Office. Generally the sponsors promote health for Mainers through physical fitness activities. Our representatives went prepared to explain what Bethel people had done to accommodate and promote healthy physical exercise.
When the saints go marching in: Sunday evening’s band concert at the Congo Church drew a large crowd of band music fans. The Mahoosuc Community Band presented its annual spring per-formance topped, in my opinion, by “At A Dixieland Jazz Funeral.” Listening to the “Stephen Foster Fantasy” brought back memories of music classes at the Russell School in Arlington. The band’s spring program included four numbers that were sponsored by Buy-A-Song patrons, Peter Southam, Walter and Carol Hatch and Jack and Lucy Nordahl. In his capacity as Community Band Announcer, Peter Southam made a pitch for new members to come to their regular Monday night band practice sessions at the church.
While you were out: We came back from Florida to recently discover that Douglas W. Jones, Inc. was the owner of Cross Excavation. I wondered why the big ads for Cross Excavation were appear-ing in The Citizen. So Googling, Douglas Jones I found his flag at Powder Ridge. Good luck to the new owner and the Cross’s. The Cross company should be forever remembered for saving the Be-thel Water District’s operations after the big washout in July three years ago and many other simi-lar emergency jobs.
Selectmen’s Meeting: The Board approved this year’s Town Meeting warrant. A number of arti-cles may change contingent on the outcome of the police department-sheriff contract vote results on June 8. A letter of support request from Black Mountain of Maine for their grant request to im-prove its buildings used in ski competitions was approved with note made that there was no sense of how Bethel voters saw this situation. (No members of the public attended the meeting. The Sun Journal did run a news item about the meeting.)
The go-ahead was given for the town manager to advertise for committee volunteers re: a three-town wind power ordinance group covering Bethel, Newry and Greenwood. Some discussion en-sued about would these ordinances cover personal wind energy projects — likely answer to this is if your neighbor lives 50 feet away — there will be some regulation.
Davis Park parking and public safety has come up again. As one selectman noted, at some point we have to get serious about getting serious about the parking situation. Step one will be to tape measure and layout some realistic parking space options to be considered.
A contract to receive grant funds for energy reduction upgrades, meaning installing less energy consuming equipment at the wastewater treatment plant had just been received. Therefore, as the board members had not read the contract no action was taken Monday night. Tuesday, June 1, will be the next regular meeting of the Board — Monday, the 31st of May, being Memorial Day.
ProAves in Colombia: Jeff and Patti Parsons with Jim and Henrietta List volunteered to work at the bird preserve in Colombia. The ProAves’ objective is to support and promote the protection of Colombia’s incredible but endangered natural heritage with the ultimate aim of benefiting the planet and humanity. Our intrepid volunteers had jobs of making and clearing trails and physical maintenance work at the preserve. From the US, they flew to Santa Marta, a city on Colombia’s north Caribbean coastline; from there they went overland 20 or so miles into the highlands (6,500 feet elevation) where the preserve is located.
Bethel Riverside Cemetery Association meeting: The association’s annual meeting on May 26 will be asked to consider three major projects: one is removal of three large, dead spruce trees. Sec-ond item is: removal of an acre of stumps left from the cutting in the summer/fall of 2007. Third item: is repairing gates and fence sections of the old iron fence.
Bethel’s “Burma” bridge: At Bethel Outdoor Adventure, the Parsons’ project for 2010 is to get a bridge from the mainland to Hastings Island. The plan, which is pretty much in the hands of engi-neer Jim Sysko, is to hang a suspension bridge over a narrow channel of the Androscoggin. Al-though Burma bridges do not generally have solid walkways, the BOA Bridge will have one. Once built and tested, the island will be open for walking, exploring and carry in-carry out picnics. Jeff is also considering pasturing goats or sheep on the island to keep the brush down. When the Godwins owned the farm that included the present campground land, they routinely pastured cattle and sheep on the island and hayed the island as well. Crossing to the island in those days was by trac-tor; Oakley Godwin had a saddle horse which he rode from the riverbank downstream from the BOA canoe landing to a large sandbar and then on to the island. Cattle made the trip on foot. Since those days the sandbar has migrated downstream.
Is anyone out there interested? A year ago round one ended for compiling a new history of events and people in the Sunday River valley. The response so far has not been deafening. Steve Wight, Randy Bennett and I collaborate on this project. We would like to get some inkling of inter-est from Sunday River (Bethel and Newry) voters. There will be room for personal and family sketches as well as inclusion of previous histories by Carrie Wight and Paula Wight. Hopefully, some day, the finished product will be printed. The preliminary version is online. Via Yahoo or Google you should get it by just typing “history of Sunday River.” The full title is Brief History of Sunday River. The web address is www.thebetheljournals.info/Sunday_river/Home.htm. Our op-erators are standing by to take your call.
Gem Dig: Still at BOA, the increasingly popular Gem Dig facility is being put into shape for open-ing soon. Brian Head will be in charge this summer. Brian made his way here via Lincoln, Maine and Sunday River Ski Resort in recent times.
Department of Global Warming: For those who are interested, here is temperature data for the last few years. For the period of Nov. 1 to May 1: 2009-2010, average daily mean temperature was 33.99; compared to: 2008-2009, 28.21; 2007-2008, 28.54; 2006-2007, 31.24. Yearly temperature averages for the last four years were: 2009, 44.44; 2008, 44.83; 2007, 45.19; 2006, 48.85. The coldest low tem-perature recorded in 2010 was Jan. 17 — temperature was -25.4 degrees. Temperature data comes from Brooks Bros records — temperature station at the Main Street store.
Sent in by Nancy Brown: Danny Ojeda graduated in March from a six-month training program with the Maine Army National Guard. He is currently assigned to the 488th Military Police Company, Detachment 1, in Houlton, Maine. Ojeda is the son of Merrie Lee and Eddie Ojeda and the grandson of Muriel Butters.
Sent in by Sylvia Harrington: “Recently, Susan Kilduff of Salem, Mass., visited me for a weekend. On Friday evening we ate at my apartment and caught up on events since our last visit. On Satur-day, we went to camp stopping at Subway for lunch to eat on the deck while out there. As I was get-ting things to bring in and sort out she filled her trunk with flowers and bulbs she dug up to plant, including a rhubarb plant to take home with her. We saw a pair of indigo buntings looking over one of the nests, but the chickadees were vying for the spot. That evening we went out to Bethel’s Best for supper. Susan headed home for an engagement early Sunday morning.