West Bethel June 24
We have discovered white and blue bellflowers at the edge of the woods at the back of our property. They are in full bloom right now and quite lovely. It’s little surprises like this that add spice to life. The many perennials we moved from our former house, plus those we bought at the library plant sale, are thriving and starting to flower. Yay!
As I write this on the first full day of summer, the temperature is in the high 70s, the sun has been shining on my clean laundry, and the lettuce looks ready for some harvesting of individual leaves. The pole beans planted about six weeks ago are about to start their climb up the trellis, and those planted four weeks ago are moving right along.
We are wakened every morning by a persistent wren with its lovely trill. I couldn’t identify it at first, so got out the CD of bird calls, and there it was. On my morning walks I’m hearing wood thrushes, veeries, black-throated green warblers, titmice, chickadees, et al. I find it odd that on the Flat Road we heard lots of hermit thrushes and no wood thrushes, whereas it is just the opposite here at the Garden of Eden.
Last Thursday Mike and I went to Sunday River Alpacas to help Mo Libby host a school group from Indiana. This is about the fifth year this same group has returned. The adults are the same, the students are new each year. They raise money all year long in order to carry out a tour of New England for a group of about 25 inner-city middle school students. Joining them this time were two international students, one from Brazil and one from China. (I think these two were older, but were asked along to enrich their exchange experience.)
As usual, Mo led them around the barns, instructed them about alpaca husbandry, and introduced Barker and Aurora, the two Great Pyrenees guard dogs, and Bunny Dude, the resident rabbit. Meanwhile, Mike had another group at the trout pond, and he supervised feeding the fish, as well as demonstrating how to catch one on a fly rod. (We had rainbow trout for dinner that night!) At the same time, I had yet a third group in the shop as I demonstrated the spinning of alpaca fiber. And, of course, both students and chaperones did a bit of shopping as well. Jane Hosterman was on the scene, too, rotating among the three venues as the guests also rotated.
Mo informed me that she had hosted a birthday party at the farm the previous week for a group from Doyles’ day-care. She had a grand time helping to entertain the four-year-olds, and it seems the children had a blast also. Sounds like a great way to celebrate a child’s birthday.
Before you know it, the Music without Borders program will begin again at Gould Academy. This will be the fourth year that Tamara Poddubnaya will bring her international piano students to Gould for a three-week workshop and festival, beginning July 2. Mark your calendars now, because it’s just over a week away. Where else can you attend free live-music recitals three or four times a week and see and hear the stars of tomorrow?
WHAT: Music without Borders, 4th International Piano Festival Student Recitals
WHERE: Trustees Auditorium in McLaughlin Science Building, Gould Academy, Bethel..
WHEN: 7:30 p.m., every Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, July 2-21, 2010.
TICKETS: No reservations needed. General public admitted at no charge.
INFORMATION: Festival news, latest recital venue details at www.gouldacademy.org.
My weekend was a busy one, as I flew to Ohio on Friday to attend my 55th reunion at Hiram College in Hiram, Ohio, about 35 miles southeast of Cleveland. Hiram is a small liberal arts college with a good academic reputation and a unique feeling of family. Mike and I are both graduates, as are two of our daughters.
The weekend was filled with activities, luncheons, dinners, dances, lectures, tours, nature walks, and lots and lots of schmoozing. The campus was beautiful, and the attendance overall was the best ever for an Alumni Weekend. I shared a room in one of the new dormitories with an old friend and classmate, Amy Jordan, from Madison, Va. It was as if we’d never been apart. It was tough to say goodbye on Sunday to all my classmates and other friends.
One of the highlights for me was a walk around the biology field station, where I saw many familiar flora and fauna. Some things, such as tulip and sassafras trees, I’ve not seen in Maine, so that was gratifying. We were told that the station has a pair of trumpeter swans, part of a national program of restoring the trumpeter population.
Back here the 26th Annual Trek Across Maine to raise funds for the American Lung Association took place over the weekend, with West Bethelite Christine Trefethen participating in the 180-mile bike ride. There were 1,930 participants in the three-day event that raised more than $1.5 million. According to an article in the Sun Journal, even though the Trek is over, you can still sponsor a rider until early September. Visit the website www.biketreknewengland.org to find out how to sponsor a rider, and I hope you’ll make that rider Christine Trefethen.
We’ve caught up on the laundry and put away the suitcase. Now it’s back to regular routines. Hope to hear from you with your news and views. firstname.lastname@example.org; 824-2917.
Even though it was really hot on Saturday, it was nice to have sunshine for Friends and Family Day. Mary Tyler and Sandra Laughy stopped by last Monday and we discussed the events of Friends and Family Day and made some notes for next year. We watched a pair of cedar waxwings trying to get some pieces of string out of a bush to use for their nest.
My brother, Steve McLain, is taking a few days of vacation before the end of the school year. He also saw a turtle crossing the road on his way home from work one day last week.
Lise McLain took her father, Gerard Dupont, for some tests at the hospital last week. They received word that the results were favorable.
At the Memorial Day yard sale at the Town Hall, someone bought a rocking chair and was going to come back to pick it up. It is still here, so please call 836-2987.
Gilead Historical Society
The GHS worked very hard to sponsor Friends and Family Day again this year. There were a little over 100 people who attended. This is just a little below average for the last couple of years.
The work crew assembled Friday to set up the Town Hall and Schoolhouse for Saturday. There were Hugh and Lin Chapman, Mary Tyler, Sandra Laughy, Aline Dupont, Norm Buttrick, Bob and Judy Bishop, Steve McLain and Tim and Michele.
The Gilead Fire Department was at the Fire Station selling hamburgers, hot dogs and cold drinks. Judy Tyler set up her booth and with the help of her daughter, Amber, did face painting.
Bobo T. Clown was on hand for the children’s parade and performed his magic show afterward. The winners of the parade were Sidney Chapman (First Place), Tanner McLean (Second Place) and Jakob Hooper (Third Place). Judges for the parade were Aline Dupont and Tammy MacDormand.
Perry and Happy Chapman spent the day watching over the food table in the hall. They also sold some of the squares for the Memory Quilt. There are still squares that can be bought by contacting either Lin Chapman (836-2987) or Alicia McLean (836-2153).
Norm Buttrick worked very hard to make the schoolhouse presentable for the day. He had some help from Hugh Chapman, Tim Chapman and Michele Landry. They set the room up to give anyone an idea of what it looked like when it was a school, with the teacher’s desk down front and a few student desks lined up by the windows. We are still looking for school-related items and stories of attending the school .
At 11 a.m., a group of people attended the dedication of the plaque in memory of Millie McLain. The McLain family donated the property to the GHS and that made it possible for the good things that are happening on the McLain lot on the corner. First the Gilead Village Schoolhouse arrived last August and before long, the old 1851 railroad station will be returning to Gilead. The railroad station is already on the Historic Register. Howard Reiche delivered the plaque that was on the building to the GHS for safe keeping. It will be placed back on the building when it arrives in Gilead.
State Representative Jarrod Crockett gave a great speech before the plaque was unveiled by Millie’s son and daughter, Steve McLain and Linsley “McLain” Chapman. Jarrod spoke a little on Millie’s life in Gilead and how much she cared about the town. Jarrod was pleased to be a part of this event since he has family connections to Gilead. Many thanks to Jarrod for his help and offer to call on him anytime in the future.
Dean Bennett was the featured speaker of the day. He did a Power Point presentation on his newest book, “Nature and Renewal, Wild River Valley & Beyond.” The group of people who attended enjoyed the presentation and had a chance to speak with him and get an autographed copy of the book. Many thanks to Mr. Bennett, who is a member of the GHS, for taking his time to come to Gilead to speak. The GHS still has copies if anyone would like to purchase one.
The Gilead Recreation Committee was there to oversee the games for the children. Alicia McLean did a great job running the games and keeping them busy. Alicia also sold raffle tickets to raise money for the Rec. Committee and they did quite well. The tickets were sold during the day and the winners were drawn at the end of the day. There were three baskets that were the prizes. The winners were: Snack Basket, Judy Tyler; Popcorn Basket, Linda Taylor; Kid’s Toys Basket, Sidney Chapman.
This event is held each year to give the citizens of Gilead, and their friends and family from all over, the chance to get together and spend some time catching up on what they have been doing over the past year or so. The GHS would like to thank everyone who made the day a success by helping out or by attending the event. We appreciate your support.
Got any news? Call 836-2987 or e-mail email@example.com.