July 31 – August 6, 2020Vol. 22, No. 8

Water Street in Gardiner — one of Maine's many vibrant downtowns. More

On the Cover

The Uplift of Downtown

Even when milk and fresh produce were delivered by boat to remote camps on these lakes, even when there were no cars and few roads connecting towns, even when vacation meant not going anywhere or doing anything, going to town in central Maine has been a favorite, if not a standard, part of the summer experience. More

Arts Extra

A New Arts Collaborative for Downtown Waterville

Imagine a street-level, performance and display space for art exhibits, concerts, poetry readings, lectures, discussions, and small theatrical and dance productions in downtown Waterville. Imagine meeting artists from around the world who have come to Waterville to create new works and share their knowledge and skill. These two elements are the crux of Colby College's new "arts collaborative," which is taking shape in the former Waterville Hardware building at the base of Main Street in downtown Waterville. More

The Luckiest Boy

The World of the Old Garage

I'd like to tell you a little about some of the old garages and their operators that existed right here in Belgrade in the decades gone by. Most towns or villages had at least one. There are a few left, but running one is not easy to do these days for multiple reasons. More

Book Review

The Lobster Chronicles

The Lobster Chronicles by Colby College graduate Linda Greenlaw, bestselling author of several nonfiction books and novels, has new meaning for me in 2020. An English major, she always spent her summers earning college money at the Isle au Haut fishing lobster and helping her dad. Upon graduating from Colby, much to her mother's dismay, she pursued her love of the sea and fishing on swordfish boats that went clear out to the Outer Banks. More

Dams Report

Nearly Normal

Well, it looks like we are finally back to a fairly normal summer with the occasional afternoon shower. Anything close to "normal" is such a blessing nowadays! More


European Frog's-Bit: Invasive in Cobbossee Lake

European frog's-bit is native to Europe and parts of northern Asia. It's actually considered rare in Switzerland! Here in the United States, however, it is a non-native, invasive aquatic species that floats freely and can create densely tangled floating mats, crowding and shading out native aquatic plants. More

Take It Outside

Foraging, Fishing, and Hiking

It's hard to believe this is already the eighth column of the summer. Last year at this time, the papers were full of "back to school" ads. This year, school administrators are trying to figure out how and when to safely start class, but I don't think the kids are reading the paper anyway. They are too busy having fun in and around the water and hiking the nearby trails. More