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This week’s edition!

National award-winning author to visit Lewiston Public Library

LEWISTON, ME — Lewiston Public Library (LPL) will be hosting National Book Award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson for a public event on Thursday, May 30, 2024, at 5:30PM, as part of a national tour in support of her new book, Remember Us. Woodson will be joined in conversation with Director and Founder of Diverse BookFinder, Dr. Krista Aronson. The event is offered in partnership with the Maine Humanities Council (MHC), a statewide non-profit organization and Maine’s affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

Woodson’s new book, Remember Us, is a beautiful, lyrical novel inspired by her own childhood in Brooklyn’s Bushwick neighborhood. Capturing a transformative summer in the life of a twelve-year-old girl as she watches much of her world change, its powerful story delves deeply into life’s burning questions about time, memory, and what we take with us into the future.

The public event will take place in Lewiston Public Library’s Callahan Hall on the third floor. Admission is free.

About Jacqueline Woodson

Jacqueline Woodson (jacquelinewoodson.com) is the author of more than thirty books for young people and adults including Another Brooklyn, Red At The Bone and The Day You Begin. She received a 2023 Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, a 2023 E. B. White Award, a 2020 MacArthur Fellowship, the 2020 Hans Christian Andersen Award, the 2018 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, and the 2018 Children’s Literature Legacy Award, and was the 2018–2019 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. Her New York Times bestselling memoir, Brown Girl Dreaming, won the National Book Award, the Coretta Scott King Award, a Newbery Honor, and the NAACP Image Award. Her books for young readers include Coretta Scott King Award and NAACP Image Award winner Before the Ever After, New York Times bestsellers The Day You Begin and Harbor Me, Newbery Honor winners Feathers, Show Way, and After Tupac and D Foster, and Each Kindness. In 2018, she founded BALDWIN FOR THE ARTS (https://baldwinforthearts.org), a residency serving writers, composers, interdisciplinary, and visual artists of the Global Majority. Her most recent novel, Remember Us, is set in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn.

Androscoggin rebrands, changes name to Andwell Health Partners

LEWISTON, ME – Maine’s largest independent, nonprofit home healthcare and care management organization has rebranded to Andwell Health Partners.  

Founded in 1966, Andwell Health Partners (now formerly known as Androscoggin Home Healthcare and Hospice) started as a home health provider serving the Androscoggin County region. Over its decades-long history, it has expanded throughout the state, in all sixteen counties, with services that include in-home hospice care, Maine’s first inpatient hospice facility, the Maine Center for Palliative Medicine, and most recently, community and behavioral health, mobile wound care, in-home care giving, private-duty nursing, therapy care, and maternal and child health. 

“As we continue to grow and evolve, we realized that the name Androscoggin Home Healthcare and Hospice no longer accurately reflected who we are, where we are going, and who we serve,” says Andwell board chair Debra Fournier. The new name, Andwell Health Partners, better encompasses everything the organization does. “We’re now the largest independent, nonprofit, home and community-based healthcare organization in Maine,” Fournier says.  

The word Andwell is an amalgamation of the organization’s history, mission, and services: “And” honors the Androscoggin County roots, “well” celebrates the focus on health and wellness, and “dwell” highlights the care delivery system of in-home health. The second part of the name, Health Partners, represents the organization’s mission to be a trusted partner to its patients and clients, with a focus on wellness, not illness. And it also serves as health partner to other healthcare organizations who refer to and depend on Andwell. “We collaborate with hospitals, health systems, and other healthcare organizations,” says Andwell president and CEO Ken Albert. “We’re proud they choose us time and again as their preferred partner for home and community-based health care. We take this trust and responsibility seriously.” 

“We are proud of our important place on the healthcare continuum, and we know that Andwell Health Partners reflects our true evolution and vision,” says Albert. “Our name may have changed, but our heart hasn’t. We are still the same great people, and we are still committed to enhancing quality of life by providing innovative and compassionate health care for all. We want to serve as your partner in health for life.”

“Oh Lewiston” video debuts at city council meeting

 LEWISTON, ME – A song that has stood the test of time, “Oh Lewiston,” composed by Emmy-nominated, renowned music producer Con Fullam, debuted in video form at the Tue., May 21, City Council meeting.

 “I wrote ‘Oh Lewiston’ some twenty plus years ago at the request of Lew Colby, then General Manager of WCSH-TV, for a promotional campaign he was creating to celebrate the City of Lewiston. It was not a difficult assignment for me as I had grown up in Waterville which was and still is pretty much a twin. I had not thought about the song in years until the tragedy of October 25 took place. At that time, the song came back to me, and I felt that its positive message could lift spirits badly in need.” 

“The lyrics in ‘Oh Lewiston’ still hold true today and shine a light on city’s heritage, perseverance, and unwavering can-do spirit,” said Mayor Carl Sheline. “We were first introduced to the song when pursuing the All-America City designation and were pleased to be reminded of it when Mr. Fullam reached out.” 

“I approached the City about producing a new version of the song featuring the voices of many of Maine’s best known artists including Denny Breau, Brooke LaChance, Eddie Boucher, and Efra Bacerra. Both the City and the artists were excited by the idea, and so we went into the studio and recorded this new version. All of us involved in the making of this music video are deeply honored to be a part of it,” said Fullam.

 “For 28 music professionals from throughout the State of Maine to collaborate without hesitation and at no cost to the City is simply extraordinary,” said Mayor Sheline. “Mr. Fullam said this would be a gift to the City of Lewiston, and it is indeed a real gem. We were also pleased that he gave us the opportunity to submit visuals about our hometown.”

 The new musical format was recorded at The Recording Club at The Studio, Portland, Maine, and at Efra Bacerra Studio, Lewiston. Audio producers for the project are Con Fullam, Steve Drown, and Efra Bacerra. Piano is provided by Roy Clark and violin input by Andy Happell and Erica Brown. Sound mix and mastering is provided by Steve Drown with videographers Reg Groff and Joe Coolbrith. Reg Groff also served as Editor. 

Performers in the video are leads Denny Breau and Brook LaChance, Scott Elliot, Pat Colwell, Sierra Harris, Dan Merrill, Barney Martin, Don Campbell, Firefly, Katie Daggett, Cali Rossen, Ed Boucher, Amina Mahamat, Joan Kennedy, Yvette Faulkner, Anni Clark, Clara Bongamo, Jeanne Martin, Efra Bacerra, Eli Bacerra-Grieve, and Kaylee Kazadi. 

Fullam also extends appreciation to numerous others who provided guest appearances, visuals, video, and/or creative input: Sen. Susan Collins, Sen. Angus King, Rep. Chellie Pingree, Rep. Jared Golden and family, Gov. Janet Mills, Humorist Tim Sample, Actor Patrick Dempsey, the City of Lewiston, Lewiston Communications Coordinator Dottie Perham-Whittier, Lewiston Highway Operations Manager Reggie Poussard, The Dempsey Center, Richard Plourde Photography, Ryan Ordway, Thom Dickenson, David Hembre, Maine Memory Network, The Androscoggin Historical Society, Lewiston Sun Journal, Mayor Carl L. Sheline, and former Mayor Laurent F. Gilbert, Sr.

L-A Kiwanis Club announces $100K Hole in One contest

AUBURN, ME — The Lewiston-Auburn Kiwanis Club is pleased to announce its $100,000 Hole In One Contest. It will be hosted by Taber’s Restaurant, Miniature Golf and Driving Range at 473 Lake Shore Drive, Auburn. The qualifying dates are June 1, & 2 from Noon to 5 pm and Jun 5, 6 and 7 from 4 to 7 pm. Those who are the ten closest to the pin will shoot it out for the top prize on June 8 at 3 pm!

Everyone is welcome to try to qualify, just use your favorite club and our golf balls. Try as many times as you like! It only costs $1 for a ball, six balls for $5 and 13 balls for $10.

This is a fundraiser for the Lewiston-Auburn Kiwanis Club. We have been serving our communities since 1922 with many charitable activities, such as scholarships, supporting Key Clubs in five area high schools and donations to community groups.

For more information, go to our Facebook page, Kiwanis Club of Lewiston-Auburn, Maine, and click on our Hole in One event.

Shown here planning this event are, left to right, Deb Levesque, Cody Malpass, Jamie Thompson, Karen Choate, Julie Gile and Don Malpass.

Rotarians helping at Trinity Jubilee Center

LEWISTON, ME — Lewiston-Auburn Rotary Club President Roger Philippon, left, and longtime member Ed Plourde sort various food items at the Trinity Jubilee Center in Lewiston. L-A Rotary Club members volunteer every Tuesday morning with the Jubilee Center’s Food Rescue Project, which brings together local food providers interested in donating leftover food to those in need. Learn more at trinityjubileecenter.org/

The L-A Rotary Club has been serving the community since its founding in 1917. In addition to various volunteer activities, the club raises funds to support local service agencies and to provide yearly scholarships to graduating seniors from area high schools. The club meets every Thursday at noon. Anyone interested in joining is encouraged to come to a meeting or visit the club website at lewistonauburnrotary.org/.

May exhibit featured at WHA Rotating Art Gallery

LEWISTON, ME — The Woman’s Hospital Association (WHA) Rotating Art Gallery at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston is displaying the paintings of Lewiston artists, Susan and Paul Boucher. Owners of Windows to Nature, their avid love of Maine’s outdoors inspires their work and lives.

Susan Boucher has been interested in some kind of art since she was young. Painting predominantly in watercolor utilizing her own photographic images, she calls on her endless fascination with her surroundings as she paints. Her joy in being out in nature is seen in the undulating shapes of flowers and woodland scenes she creates.

For Paul Boucher, art has been an integral part of his life for over 40 years. Though he has studied under various artists he is primarily self-taught. His work combines a sense of realism with his own unique form of imagination, especially when working with his favorite subjects, New England scenes and Maine birds.

The works on display may be purchased through the WHA Gift Shop located adjacent to the main lobby at Central Maine Medical Center. A percentage of sale proceeds benefits patients of CMMC.

‘Birches’ by Susan Boucher

Volunteers needed for May 18 flag placement at Veterans’ gravesites

The City of Lewiston helps to recruit volunteers to place almost 7,500 flags at the individual veteran’s gravestones within cemeteries within the city. 

Brief Background: The State passed a law in 2001 that requires municipalities to purchase and place individual American flags at the gravestone of every veteran buried in each cemetery located in that town. The flags must be in place for Memorial Day each year.  Lewiston has 13 cemeteries and places almost 7,500 flags. All work is done by community volunteers.  For many of the smaller cemeteries, the abutting neighbors usually place the flags each year. For the two largest cemeteries – Riverside and St. Peter’s, there are service organizations which have adopted these cemeteries over the years and take care of placing the flags for the City of Lewiston.

These groups welcome volunteers to assist them at the following locations. Volunteers do not need to sign up in advance; they are welcome to show up on the day of the event and will be provided instructions by the on-site coordinator(s).   

RIVERSIDE CEMETERY, 192 Summer Street, Lewiston

Saturday, May 18, 2024, 8:30 AM (rain date – Saturday, May 25, 9 AM)

The Knights of Columbus are the coordinators for this location. Contact is Leo Baillargeon at (207) 577-7424

There are approximately 1,600 flags for this location.

ST. PETER’S CEMETERY217 Switzerland Road, Lewiston

Saturday, May 18, 2024 (rain or shine) at 10 AM

Meet at the Mausoleum, St. Peter’s Cemetery, 217 Switzerland Road, Lewiston

Jerry DeWitt (207) 576-0376 is the contact person, and the L/A Veterans Council members are the coordinators for this location.   

There are approximately 4,000 flags for this location.

The plan is to assign teams of 5-10 volunteers to an area of the cemetery and to cover the cemetery in a grid fashion in order to not miss any stone. There is no master list of veterans buried at either cemetery, so volunteers will need to walk each row of stones and read the inscription on each gravesite.  If military service is listed on the stone, a flag will be placed there. This is a fairly time-consuming process so many volunteers are appreciated. 

Logistics:

Work gloves are optional but encouraged; volunteers should bring their own hand sanitizer if interested

Wear sneakers or boots in case the grass is wet

Bring a screwdriver to use to poke a hole in the grass.  It makes it much easier to place the wooden flag dowel into the ground if you make the hole first.

Plan to bring a water bottle if it is a hot day

Bring bug spray, hat and sunscreen; be mindful of ticks

Children/youth are encouraged to participate but must be accompanied by an adult 

Wearing company or organization t-shirts is welcome

Questions about the process can be directed to the Lewiston City Clerk’s Office (207) 513-3124, or volunteers can reach out to the event coordinators directly. 

Top Gun LA Pitch-Off celebrates entrepreneurial success

LEWISTON, ME –The Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce hosted the highly anticipated 8th annual Top Gun LA Regional Pitch-Off Competition at The Public Theater, presented by the City of Lewiston. The event, showcasing the culmination of months of entrepreneurial development, brought together a diverse array of early-stage companies vying for recognition and advancement opportunities.

Shanna Cox, President and CEO of the Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, expressed gratitude to all attendees and participants for their support. “We are thrilled to witness the culmination of dedication and hard work exhibited by our entrepreneurial community in the Top Gun LA Regional Pitch-Off Competition,” Cox remarked.

The Top Gun LA Regional Pitch-Off Competition featured presentations from companies that had completed a rigorous 12-week entrepreneurial development program. Participants benefited from expert guidance on various aspects of business development, including market analysis, team building, financial planning, and branding strategies. The program, designed to foster the growth of local businesses, received invaluable support from the City of Lewiston and other regional sponsors.

“We extend our sincere appreciation to the City of Lewiston, the City of Auburn, and 75 Park for their unwavering commitment to fostering entrepreneurship in our region,” Cox acknowledged. “Their generous support made this program possible and accessible to our aspiring entrepreneurs.”

The highlight of the event was the announcement of the competition winners. Jacqueline Clark and Sean Corcoran of Nor’Easter Oyster Co emerged as the first-place winners, earning recognition for their innovative business concept and compelling pitch. Lorie Costigan of Glendarragh Lavender secured second place, while Sarah Chadburn of Garden Bevy was named as the alternate winner.

“These remarkable entrepreneurs exemplify the spirit of innovation and perseverance that defines our region,” Cox stated. “We congratulate them on their well-deserved success and look forward to supporting their continued growth and impact on Maine’s economy.”

The Top Gun LA Regional Pitch-Off Competition is part of a broader effort by the Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce to support and empower local businesses. Through initiatives like the Top Gun program, the Chamber aims to nurture a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem that drives economic prosperity and community development.

For more information about the Top Gun LA Regional Pitch-Off Competition and upcoming Chamber events, please visit LAMetroChamber.com.

About Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce:

The Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to fostering a vibrant business community and promoting economic growth in the Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Area.

L-R Sarah Chadburn, Jacqueline Clark, Lorie Costigan. Photo Credit Ryan Captures Life

Budget Document Technology becomes member of CEO Club

 LEWISTON, ME—Xerox has announced that Budget Document Technology of Lewiston is among the companies selected this year to be a member of their CEO Club.  

Budget Document Technology has been an independently owned, New England-based office technology and equipment dealer since 1989. The company provides customized, customer-focused office solutions for businesses and organizations across the country, resulting in workplace efficiency, reduced costs, and reliable service. 

 “We’re thrilled to be recognized as a member of the Xerox CEO Club,” said Tom Ouellette, President. “The Budget Document Technology team goes above and beyond to provide outstanding service to our clients and business partners.Thank you to our team for this achievement.”   

The Xerox CEO Club is an annual program that celebrates the top one percent of partners who have delivered exceptional results and exemplified behaviors crucial to industry growth. 

“This is an important time in Xerox’s 117-year history, and we have a lot to be proud of,” said CEO of Xerox, Steve Bandrowczak, to recipients of this honor. “Our progress and accomplishments this past year would not have been possible without your contributions, as well as your energy, passion, can-do attitude, and growth mindset.”

Meals on Wheels distribution center to relocate

LEWISTON, ME – SeniorsPlus announces that their Meals on Wheels (MOW) Distribution Center will be relocating to the Jay Hannaford Plaza in June. The center is currently located in Livermore. The new distribution center is expected to be open by June 21.

 Janis Walker, Nutrition Services Director, stated, “The Jay location will provide expanded space to accommodate program growth and enhanced space for staff and volunteers.” Food insecurity is a major issue for older adults and those with disabilities and increases their risk for malnutrition, disease, and the ability to remain in their own home. Food assistance and delivery is an important part of meeting essential needs for older adults. 

The MOW program provides nutritious meals for eligible individuals 60 years of age and older and individuals under 60 years of age that have a disability. SeniorsPlus delivers meals to residents throughout Franklin, Oxford and Androscoggin counties and includes a Pets on Wheels component for clients with pets. Individuals who would like to apply for Meals on Wheels, receive additional information or volunteer can call 207-795-4010 or 1-800-427-1241.


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