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Archive for August 2012

Arown Purcell receives “Official Waver” award

Arown Purcell of Lewiston received an “Official Waver” award from balloon pilot Ray Fournier of Hillsboro, N.H. at the Great Falls Balloon Festival’s Pilot’s Brunch on Sunday, August 19.

Purcell and Fournier met in 2011 when Fournier invited Purcell onto his float to be his official “waver” during the festival parade. The two met up again in 2012 so Purcell could resume his duties. Purcell was later treated to a flight on the specially shaped balloon “Gus T. Guppy” with pilot Larry Konash of Mahwah, N.J.

The 2012 Great Falls Balloon Festival marked its 20th year from August 17 through 19 at Simard-Payne Memorial Park in Lewiston. For more information, see or find them on Facebook.

Special Art Walk for Dempsey Challenge seeks artwork, music, dance

Art Walk Lewiston Auburn, Captive Elements Art House and L/A Arts are excited to announce a very special addition to the 2012 Art Walk calendar of events. In collaboration with the Dempsey Challenge, Downtown L-A will be once more transformed into an interactive public gallery stretching all the way from Captive Elements Art House on Lisbon Street to Main Street, Lewiston.

Taking place on October 12 from 5 to 8:30 p.m., this Art Walk is part of the Dempsey Challenge Community Celebration. The night will feature local artwork, fun musical performances, dance, theatre, spoken word and all-around community collaboration and spirit.

Art Walk is putting a call out to artists to submit their work centered on the theme of “Hope, Healing and Survival.” Submissions can take on multiple forms, including painting, photography, 3-D works, film, live theatrical performance, musical performance, dance, spoken word and poetry.

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Governor names L-A as Business-Friendly Communities

Governor Paul LePage and Maine Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner George Gervais announced on Monday the next round of Maine cities and towns earning business-friendly status, including Lewiston and Auburn.

The communities were selected from a group of seven in the second round of the Governor’s business-friendly certification program.

“I want to thank and congratulate the communities of Pittsfield, Cumberland, Westbrook, Lewiston and Auburn for their continued commitment to business excellence,” said Governor LePage. “All of these communities are focused on creating a better environment for private sector job growth and driving our economy forward by reducing red tape and being open for business.”

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Enough is Enough: Emphasize Lewiston’s positive qualities to outsiders

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

I am appalled that I feel compelled to write this week’s column on civic pride. Lewiston is a city on the move. But many residents, especially those in their 20s and 30s, have come to expect instant gratification.

Creating a desirable city is not like popping a piece of dark chocolate into your mouth. It takes hours, days, weeks and years to design and implement a city that is not only livable, but also a destination.

It’s time for area residents that have a stake in our community to become ambassadors and start talking up what a great place Lewiston is becoming. We are being given an opportunity to productively grow. The costs of homes and a renaissance of quality apartments in our downtown area have made us a desirable destination.

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LETTER: What do Democrats mean by the “LePage Agenda?”

To the Editor:

Maine Democratic Party advertisements have been popping up all over the Internet, even on conservative sites, with menacing pictures of our governor under such slogans as “Help Us Fight the LePage Agenda.” Three things seem clear from this from this phenomenon.

First, these wholesale Internet ads are cheap. Second, the Democrats are committed to negative campaigning. Third, Maine’s Democrats are running against Paul LePage in 2012, even though he is not running again until 2014.

I predicted as much to the governor in August 2011 and found he already expected it. I foresaw this because the Democrats’ candidate for the District 121 special election at that time was distributing a hand-out that attacked the governor by name in three places while making no mention at all of Nancy Thompson, her Republican opponent.

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“CLT Reunion” to feature old and new faces

Tickets are still available for Community Little Theatre’s “A Night at the Tony Awards – A CLT Reunion” on Saturday, September 8 at 7 p.m. The evening will include a concert by some of the theatre’s favorite performers, past and present. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. at Great Falls Arts Center at 30 Academy Street, Auburn. Tickets are $40 per person.

This night of music and fun will begin with light foods, a cash bar, and a silent and live auction, followed by a concert of musical performances of Broadway Hits from Tony Award winners and nominees. The evening will be hosted by long-time CLT performer Chip Morrison of the Androscoggin Chamber of Commerce.

Performers will include, Mitchell Clyde Thomas, Tiffany Warren, Angela and Shawn Robitaille, Michael Litchfield, Roger Philippon, Michelle Mahon Caron, Renee Mahon Davis, Eileen Messina, Ron Bouffard and Katie St. Pierre.

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20th Balloon Fest a soaring success!

Jeff and Shannon Bissonnette with Donna Steckino and Fred Frohardt with the balloon sponsored by Formed Fibre.

“Demographic Winter” has severe economic consequences for Maine

As the number of Maine residents continues to decline, the state is staring into a population abyss that could mean the loss of 47,000 working-age people in 10 years and 101,000 workers in 20 years.

The state’s declining population, coupled with a rapidly growing segment of people over 65, has serious economic ramifications for both Maine’s business community and the state government. As younger residents leave Maine and the older generation dies off, businesses will continue to lose employees and customers.

At the same time, Maine’s remaining population will age rapidly and demand more of state government’s dwindling resources.

These startling statistics are included in a new report by The Maine Heritage Policy Center, titled “The Fiscal Costs of Maine’s Demographic Winter.” See the report at

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Veayo Twins to perform at August Art Walk

The featured entertainment for the next Art Walk Lewiston-Auburn on Friday, August 31 will be a free concert by the Veayo Twins. Their performance will take place at 6 p.m. at Dufresne Plaza, across from the District Court Building on Lisbon Street in Lewiston.

The Veayo Twins are identical twin sisters Katherine and Kristen Veayo. Known for their sweet vocal harmonies, they play catchy, original songs that revolve around relationships, life experiences, and overcoming obstacles.

At the tender age of 16, they have already been performing live for over three years, opening for Grammy Award-winning country rock band Emerson Drive and playing at the Jonas Brothers’ softball challenge, Patriots Place at Gillette Stadium, Hard Rock Cafés in Boston and the Bahamas, NYC’s historic Webster Hall, and on local CBS, ABC and Fox TV shows.

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Enough is Enough: Fair share, EBT cards and gourmet whoopie pies

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

Oh, the horror! Is the prediction by the Mayan Calendar about to be fulfilled? Is Hades about to be unleashed? Will liberal politicians be forced to advocate for the taxpaying voters to the chagrin of advocacy and special interest groups?

Boo-hoos and wailing are about to be heard from York to Caribou. Why? Governor Paul LePage may call our state legislature into special session.

What diabolical scheme is he about to unleash that will make the liberal Democrats (as opposed to right-thinking Democrats) become angry?

Hmm, let’s think.

How about “The Pay Your Fair Share Tax Bill.” This bill would afford those who constantly complain that income taxes are too low the ability to be taxed at a higher rate than currently prescribed. Three boxes could be added to the tax form, allowing the taxpayer the choice of choosing to pay one, two or three percent over the required rate set by the state.

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