The Bethel Harvestfest and Chowdah Cook-off is this Saturday, Sept. 21, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the Common. Harvestfest is more than just a food event. In addition to the chowder cook-off, the apple pie contest, and the abundant fresh local produce, events include music, chainsaw carving, arts, crafts, free horse drawn carriage rides, and a lecture and book signing at the Bethel Historical Society with David B. Field, author of “Along Maine’s Appalachian Trail.” Activities during the weekend include apple picking at Gibson’s and Lyons apple orchards, canoe and kayak tours, a 45-mile bicycle ride, a flycast contest, and a drift boat competition. A complete schedule is available at www.bethelharvestfest.com.
Household hazardous waste will be collected at the SAD 44 bus barn on Lower Main Street in Bethel on Saturday, Sept, 21. Collection time is 9 to 11:30 a.m.
Gas prices are edging up again. As usual, Maine prices are higher than the national average, which was $3.547 a gallon for regular gasoline on Sunday, Sept. 15. Here in Maine, the average was $3.696. Prices ranged from a high of $3.999 a gallon in Ogunquit to a low of $3.459 in Norway. For the past week gas prices have been 15 to 20 cents less a gallon in the Norway-South Paris area than in Bethel. At Amato’s on Fair Street in Norway, the price was $3.459 a gallon. (Amato’s is known for the lowest prices around.) The Norway Mallard Mart was selling regular gasoline for $3.469, while the Bethel Mallard Mart was charging $3.699 a gallon. C.N. Brown’s price in South Paris was $3.549, but here in Bethel they were charging $3.669. We all know it doesn’t cost that much more to transport gas to Bethel. The prices are set at the corporate headquarters, not at the local stations, and companies charge what they can get away with. So, if you’re traveling and want to save a few dollars, check out the prices before you go at www.mainegasprices.com.
Brilliant wildflowers are still blossoming along the roadsides and in the fields. On my Sunday afternoon walk I found goldenrods, yarrows, pink clovers, and purple and white asters (some as tall as me). Purple asters were also growing along the edges of the swamp in back of our house. There were still some bluets tucked away among the tall grass in the old cow pasture. This tiny flower is one of the earliest and most prolific spring flowers. It often blossoms along roadsides when there is still snow on the ground and lasts until the first frost.
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