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Archive for December 2012

Auburn, National Guard to plan for use of Mount Apatite

The year-long Joint Land Use Study (JLUS) for the Mt. Apatite Recreation Area, the adjoining Maine Army National Guard property and surrounding area has begun.

The JLUS is funded by a $149,998 Department of Defense, Office Economic Adjustment grant and is intended to ensure civilian growth and development are compatible with vital training, testing and other military operations.

The area includes the Auburn Suburban Little League ball fields and the popular Mt. Apatite Park, a 344-acre park that is covered with gemstone quarries and hiking, cross-country, snowmobile trails and residential areas.

The 154-acre Maine Army National Guard site is part of the existing ball fields (27 acres), and the remaining land use is used for training operations 270 days a year.

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Enough is Enough: DHHS shortfall, constitutional officers and holiday greetings

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

What a state we live in!

Take the Department of Health and Human Services—please! A glitch in the department’s computer resulted in paying several million dollars to individuals who had no claim to the money.

Now, because it was a State of Maine error, those individuals who were mistakenly given the money are being allowed to keep it. They’ll probably have a very Merry Christmas.

Now let’s look at the policies of our financial institutions. If they made a similar error, the recipient would be asked (actually, told) to rectify the mistake and return the money. Failing to do so would guarantee an expensive trip to either criminal or civil court. Contrary to the State of Maine’s policies, you would be required to return the money.

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Public Theatre’s “A Christmas Carol” opens Friday

The Public Theatre’s acclaimed adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” plays for one weekend only, Dec. 7 through 9. Pictured here is Joel Leffert as Scrooge, with Maddy Leslie.

Lewiston-Auburn’s professional theater company, The Public Theatre, will present their acclaimed adaptation of “A Christmas Carol” for one weekend only on Friday, December 7 at 7 p.m., Saturday, December 8 at 2 and 7 p.m., and Sunday December 9 at 2 p.m.

The Public Theatre’s original adaptation of Dickens’ classic tale featuring six actors and a fiddler has become a favorite holiday tradition in Lewiston-Auburn. Tickets are $18 for adults and only $5 for children ages 18 and under. Gift certificates for tickets to this production, or any play scheduled throughout the remainder of the season, are also available. For tickets, call the box office at 782-3200 or visit

“A Christmas Carol” is sponsored by Twin City Times, Rent it, Agren Appliance, and the Greater Androscoggin Humane Society. Season underwriters are the Sun Journal, Platz Associates, Schooner Estates, Down East Magazine, Gleason Media Services and Austin Associates.


Annual Messiah Sing-along at Congregational Church

The Augusta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) is excited to invite the community to its 10th Annual Messiah Sing-along, with performances taking place at 7 p.m. on Friday, December 14 at the High Street Congregational Church in Auburn and Saturday, December 15 at Hope Baptist Church in Manchester.

Handel’s Messiah was completed in 1741, with composition beginning on August 22 of that year and finishing a mere 24 days later on September 14. Despite its swift creation, only minor errors were found within the 259-page masterpiece.

Described as “a meditation of our Lord as Messiah in Christian thought and belief”, Messiah differs from many of Handel’s other oratorios in that the soloists do not take on dramatic roles, there is no single, dominant narrative voice and very little use is made of quoted speech. It is a musical tour de force that has stood the test of time by remaining internationally popular for 270 years, featuring “Comfort ye”, the “Hallelujah” chorus and the closing “Amen.”

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Franco Center restores granite buttresses

For at least the sixth time in 12 years, the Franco-American Heritage Center has scaffolding around a portion of its historic edifice as a local masonry company works to shore up three of the buttresses holding up the building’s distinctive spire.

The work, which began last week and is being partially paid for by a $40,000 grant from the Maine Community Foundation—money being matched by private donations—is expected to take another month to complete.

Over $6 million has been raised to renovate the Franco Center since it was purchased from the Catholic Diocese of Portland in 2000. Executive Director Louis Morin estimates that approximately $1.5 million still needs to be raised to fully complete needed structural work to the building.

Construction of the Franco Center, which used to be known as St. Mary’s Church and served mostly French-Canadian immigrants in what became known as Lewiston’s “Little Canada” neighborhood, began in 1907 and was completed in 1927.

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