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This week’s edition!

Become a Teen Library Ambassador at LPL

LEWISTON, ME (September 17, 2022) — The Lewiston Public Library is seeking youth and young adults between the ages of 13-19 to become Teen Library Ambassadors. Teen Library Ambassadors attend meetings once per month and assist with self-chosen and directed projects as informal volunteers under the supervision of the teen librarian. Teen Library Ambassadors advise the teen librarian on youth trends and interests in the community, helping to develop programs and events that are needs-based and better reflect local teen needs. Teen Library Ambassadors have opportunities both in-person and virtually to work on:

· Writing reviews of books, movies, comics, manga, and video games

· Taking pictures and making graphics for library social media

· Making TikTok or Reelz style videos for library social media

· Moderating discussions & running events on our LPL Teen Discord server

· Suggesting materials to purchase for the teen library collections

· Planning virtual and in-person events, programs, competitions, tournaments, and more

· Helping in the Children’s Room with storytimes, summer reading, crafts, and other programs

Teen Library Ambassadors are expected to keep in communication with the teen librarian via email, social media, or Discord in order to be considered active members. Any Teen Library Ambassadors who wish to be featured identifiably in library social media promotion must first fill out a Photo Release form.

Meetings will take place on the 4th Monday of the month from 4:00-5:00pm. The first meeting will be held on Monday, September 26th from 4-5pm in the 2nd floor Teen Lounge.

Teens can fill out the Google form at tinyurl.com/TLAapp or pick up an application at the 2nd floor Reference desk to join.

The Lewiston Public Library is located downtown at 200 Lisbon Street at the corner of Pine Street. For more information, email teen librarian Harper at hchance@lewistonmaine.gov or call the Adult & Teen Services department at 207-513-3135.

Sen. Libby: Home Heating Help is Available This Winter

Guest Column by Sen. Nate Libby

AUGUSTA, ME (September 17, 2022) — Even though we’ve been lucky to enjoy some beautiful warm days this month, there’s no denying that cooler weather is just around the corner. Fall and winter in Maine offer so much to enjoy, from the changing foliage to winter sports. But this time of year also brings stress for those who struggle to keep their homes warm. As we prepare for another winter where energy and home heating prices are expected to strain the budgets of families across the state, it’s important you know that there is help available to keep your lights on and your home warm. 

The Home Energy Assistance Program, or HEAP, is a federally funded assistance program that helps income-qualified home owners and renters pay for heating costs. This program is administered by different community agencies all over the state, and in Androscoggin County that agency is Community Concepts. (In the interest of transparency, I am employed by Community Concepts directing programs not related to HEAP). While you can apply for HEAP at most points throughout the year, it is recommended that you do so as early as possible – so if you feel you may benefit from this program, don’t wait. You can begin the application process by calling Community Concepts at 1-800-866-5588, and you can find more information about HEAP by visiting www.ccimaine.org/HomeEnergyImprovement. If you ever find yourself in need of an emergency fuel supply or in danger of having your utilities shut off by your utility company, there could be additional help available, so be sure to reach out and ask for help if you need it. 

Those who are eligible for HEAP may also be able to receive additional help in making updates and repairs to home energy systems. This includes weatherization updates to make your home more energy-efficient and heating system repair and replacement. Finally, HEAP’s sister program, LIAP, can help you keep the lights on in your home by providing a credit on your electricity bill. Income guidelines also apply here, but you can discuss your LIAP eligibility during your HEAP intake appointment. 

Another program that can help you pay for utilities is the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, also administered by Community Concepts for residents of Androscoggin County. This program can help you pay for rent and utilities dating back to the beginning of the pandemic if you meet income guidelines and had your ability to pay these bills impacted by the pandemic. Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis through this month, so apply now if you need this assistance. If you’re not a renter but a homeowner facing similar circumstances, the Homeowner Assistance Fund may be able to provide you with help. Visit haf.maine.gov to learn more. 

No one should have to make the hard choice between keeping their lights on or their home warm and putting food on the table. While fuel and energy prices are greatly influenced by global factors, my colleagues and I in the Legislature have focused on doing what we can to keep prices down. This includes passing bills this year to improve access to existing relief programs by cutting red tapegiving consumers a louder voice in the electric rate-setting process and making sure our utilities are accountable first and foremost to Maine consumers, not to their investors. We’ve also focused on making our energy grid more independent and reliable, so that it can carry us to and through the future.

 As always, I am here to help you and your family however I can. If you have questions about these programs or need help finding other resources, never hesitate to reach out. You can send me an email at Nathan.Libby@legislature.maine.gov or call my office at (207) 287-1515 any time. You can also sign up for my regular email updates by visiting www.mainesenate.org.

Still Time to See Morning After Grace at TPT

LEWISTON, ME (September 16, 2022) — After flirting at a funeral, Angus and Abigail wake up the next morning under the same blanket! When a neighbor suddenly knocks on the door, all bets are off for a peaceful retirement and these three strangers enter each other’s lives in unexpected ways.

Filled with delightful surprises, this hilarious and heartfelt comedy for grown-ups tackles real life issues like love, sex, caring for aging parents – and even medical marijuana munchies – in a way that is both very funny and very moving. AND our fabulous cast of  Broadway actors brings this play to life.

September , 22, 23, 24*, 25 – 2022

Thurs-Sat 7:30 pm, Sun 2pm, *Sat September 24 – 3pm & 7:30 pm $25 Adult / $22 Group (10+) / $20 Student (19+ with ID) / $10 Youth (4-18)

FOR TICKETS CALL 207-782-3200 

Autumn in the Air at Art Walk L/A September 30

LEWISTON, ME (September 13, 2022) — Head downtown on September 30, 2022 for Art Walk L/A from 5-7 pm and the Music in the Park summer concert from 7-9 p.m. in Kennedy Park!

Enjoy live, in-person arts experiences in more than a dozen locations, including a performance by Taiko Maine Drummers at 5:30 p.m in Dufresne Plaza.*

Arts Downtown

With Halloween approaching, a number of art walk venues will be getting into the spooky spirit. Visit The Studio, 291 Lisbon St., for its annual Horror and Gore art show, featuring oddities, psychic readings, horror and gore art, and much more! Quiet City Books, 124 Lisbon St., will host “Fading Light,” a group show of more than a dozen artists that celebrates all things autumn, from the equinox and fall harvest to Halloween, Samhain, and things going bump in the night.

Check out arts happenings at these and other Art Walk LA venues:

? The Studio, 291 Lisbon St. Annual Horror and Gore event, through Oct 22, 2022

? Lewiston Public Library, 200 Lisbon St. Works by Creative Works Auburn Artists

? Downtown Handmade, 182 Lisbon St., 2nd floor. Works by artist Krista Lord, live music by Shanti

and Hiroya, and more!

? Kimball Street Studios, 191 Lisbon St. Artist Jessy Kendall

? Quiet City Books, 124 Lisbon St. “Fading Light” group artists’ exhibition

? Obscura Cafe, 108 Lisbon St. J. Fiori draws caricatures plus artist Kate Cargile

? Museum L-A, 36 Chestnut St., Lewiston Yoga with Shanna Breton from The Sanctuary

Art Walkables

Looking for to-go food items along the art walk route? Try these spots!

? Sambusas and Somali tea at Mogadishu Store, 240 Lisbon St.

? David-Made Pizza at Forage, 180 Lisbon St.

? Piccadilly Panini at Obscura Cafe, 109 Lisbon St.

? Spicy Tots at Boba, 97 Lisbon St. Music in the Park summer concert series**

After the art walk, head to Kennedy Park, where this month’s concert features Chris Robley and Lisa/Liza.

Art Walk LA and all LA Arts programs would not be possible without the generous support of community partners including Community Arts Champion sponsors Austin Associates, P.A., Bates College, Baxter Brewing Co., Berman & Simmons, the City of Auburn, the City of Lewiston, DaVinci’s Eatery, Dirigo Federal Credit Union, Liberty Mutual, Munka Coworking, Payroll Management, the Sun Journal, the Szanton Company, as well as the Bangor Savings Bank Foundation, Maine Arts Commission, the New England Foundation for the Arts, the Onion Foundation, and the Ladd Foundation.

Since 1973, LA Arts, the arts agency for the cities of Lewiston and Auburn Maine, has pursued a mission to engage and inspire a vibrant community through arts and culture. The agency works with governments, businesses, schools and local arts and cultural organizations to create opportunities for community members across the generations to experience, learn, and participate in the arts. LA Arts organizes arts programs and initiatives, supports the work of local artists and arts organizations, and highlights the essential role the arts play in shaping an economically vital, socially integrated, and forward-looking future for its community. Learn more at www.laarts.org.

*Rain location: Callahan Hall, Lewiston Public Library, 200 Lisbon St., Lewiston * * Rain location: 1800 Club, 24 Court St., Auburn

Harriman, Printup Appointed to Board of Directors

LEWISTON, ME (September 17, 2022) — Androscoggin Home Healthcare + Hospice is proud to announce the appointment of Phillip Harriman and Heather Printup to its Board of Directors.

A lifelong resident of Yarmouth and four-term Maine Senator, Harriman is a founding partner of Lebel & Harriman LLP, a financial advisory firm established in 1978, Board Chair of Make A Wish Maine, part of the Board of Trustees for Husson University, and Political Analysis for Newscenter Maine, Political Brew. Formerly, Harriman served as President of Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), an international financial services professional services organization, as well as Director of the Yarmouth Clam Festival.

A native of Auburn, now Poland resident, Printup is a Community Relations professional boasting more than two decades with BlueTriton Brands, formerly Nestle Waters North America, representing the Poland Spring Brand. Printup is a member of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce and an Executive Board Member of the Poland Spring Preservation Society.

With the many challenges faced today in the healthcare industry at large, an organization is only as strong as the foundation provided by its Board of Directors.

“Health care in Maine and the United States is in a period of significant transformation as Medicare prepares for a massive infusion as baby boomers, who are today aging into Medicare eligibility at over 11,000 people per day,” says Ken Albert, President and CEO of Androscoggin Home Healthcare + Hospice. “The economics and regulatory dynamics in our Maine health care system are challenging, and it takes a special group of people in our community who want to dedicate themselves to governing organizations like ours. We are so fortunate to have a strong and engaged board of directors who share their time and talents with us at Androscoggin. Adding Heather and Phil to the team will make us even stronger. We are excited to work with them both.”

Manhattan Short Film Festival at This Weekend TPT

LEWISTON, ME (September 17, 2022) — The Public Theatre will host the 25th Annual MANHATTAN SHORT Film Festival on September 30 and October 1 at 7:00pm.

What makes this Film Festival so special is the diversity of the short films from around the world, and the fact that the audience determines the winners. Every person watching the festival around the world will get a ballot to determine the Best Film and Best Actor awards, so this is your chance to play film critic!” The festival also has an enviable history of showing films that have gone on to be nominated for Oscars including one that went on to win the Oscar in the Short film category! All Final Ten short films become Oscar qualified, meaning they will be automatically eligible for an Academy Award nomination by screening for a week at the Arena CineLounge in Hollywood in the county of Los Angeles from September 23 to September 29.

The Ten MANHATTAN SHORT films hail from eight countries with films from Scotland, Czech & Skovakia, Spain, Australia, Finland and Lebanon, alongside two films from France and USA. This year’s Final Ten Films represent the best short films from among 870 submissions from 70 countries received by MANHATTAN SHORT for 2022, testimony to the enduring vibrancy and creativity of short films worldwide. This year’s final ten include Don vs Lightning (Scotland), Love, Dad (Czech & Slovakia), Save the Bees (USA), The Treatment (Spain), Freefall (France), Fetish (USA), Freedom Swimmer (Australia), The Blanket (Finland), Warsha (Lebanon) and The Big Green (France).

The ten short films will be shown at The Public Theatre on Friday, September 30 and Saturday, October 1 at 7:00pm. For tickets call 782-3200 or visit thepublictheatre.org. Masking is recommended but not required. More information about our See It Safely Protocols can be found at thepublictheatre.org. The Public Theatre is located at 31 Maple St in Downtown, Lewiston

Auburn Community Concert Band Invites New Members

AUBURN, ME (August 29, 2022) — The Auburn Community Concert Band has announced that rehearsals for their Fall concert season will begin on Wednesday, September 14th. This is an ideal opportunity for former high school and college band musicians to again experience the enjoyment of making music and performing in front of large audiences.

Membership requires a commitment to the group’s weekly schedule of Wednesday evening rehearsals. Members must be able to read music, and have their own instruments. Currently, the Auburn band has an immediate need for clarinet players, and for people who can play snare and/or bass drum. All members are required to be fully vaccinated for Covid-19.

Weekly rehearsals take place on Wednesday evenings, from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. at the High Street Congregational Church, located between High and Pleasant Streets, in Auburn.

The band’s annual holiday concert for this year is scheduled for Wednesday, December 14th at the Gendron Franco Center in Lewiston. Last year’s performance was cancelled due to the pandemic.

Currently, the ACCB has 31 members, ranging in age from late-teens to mid-eighties. These members collectively represent a total of 12 central Maine towns. Before joining this organization, many of the group’s volunteer musicians had last played in a school or community band some 10 to 20 years ago, according to band director Milt Simon. “New members are often nervous when they first join, because of the lapse of time since they last practiced” said Simon. He added that “most people regain their playing skills relatively quickly.”

New members should email their intentions to Director Simon at auburncommunityband@gmail.com prior to attending their first rehearsal. Prospective members, who are unable to participate in any of the September rehearsals, will have a second opportunity to join the band during the group’s next “Open Membership Month”, happening in January.

The concert band is currently celebrating its 41st season. The organization was established by Simon back in 1981. Additional information regarding membership can be found on the band’s website at www.auburncommunityband.com.

Lewiston to Host Maine’s First Outdoor Fitness Court

LEWISTON, ME (August 30, 2022) — Maine’s first new Fitness Court® for ages 14 and over and all fitness abilities opens in September thanks to a partnership between Community Health Options, the City of Lewiston, and National Fitness Campaign (NFC). The Fitness Court, north of the canal at Simard-Payne Park, Lewiston, opens at 10:30 a.m., Friday, September 9, 2022.

A Fitness Court challenge and demos led by trained local ambassadors will follow a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Parking for attendees will be available at the 16 Lincoln Street parking garage, and residents are invited to attend.

NFC has designed the Fitness Court to be the world’s best outdoor gym that enables people to use their own body weight to undertake a complete workout using seven exercise stations—in as little as seven minutes. Partners for the local Fitness Court are committed to expand free access to high-quality workouts and create equitable exercise access.

Lewiston Mayor Carl L. Sheline is enthusiastically looking forward to the Court’s opening, “This outdoor Fitness Court will complement Simard-Payne Park nicely and is an exciting addition to our riverwalk and downtown. I appreciate Community 2 Health Options & National Fitness Campaign for making this possible and for their commitment to Lewiston.”

Kevin Lewis, Community Health Options President & CEO, says, “We are proud to be the exclusive sponsor of National Fitness Campaign Fitness Courts here in Maine and look forward to expanding the network across the state. As such, we are pleased to support the City of Lewiston in its official launch of the first Community Health Options Fitness Court in Maine.” He continues, “This project is just one part of our commitment to the health and well-being of Maine people, which includes making fitness opportunities free and accessible to help build healthy communities. This also promotes enjoyment of the outdoors—especially given the beauty of this park nestled along the Androscoggin River—and encourages physical activity, whether alone or with friends or colleagues.”

Created with individuals aged 14 and over with all fitness abilities in mind, Fitness Court workouts are adaptable for all fitness levels, allowing participants to move at their own pace. Users may also download the free Fitness Court App which acts as a coach-in-your-pocket resource, elevating the outdoor gym to a digitally supported wellness experience.

Mitch Menaged, Founder of the National Fitness Campaign, is also excited about Lewiston’s celebration, “National Fitness Campaign is proud to welcome the City of Lewiston to the Campaign as a leader in health and wellness for Maine and across America.”

For more information about the September 9th ribbon cutting, please contact Lewiston’s Community Relations Coordinator, Dottie Perham-Whittier, at 207-513- 3018. For more information on Community Health Options’ support of the National Fitness Campaign, https://nationalfitnesscampaign.com/maine.

Making Sure We Support Our First Responders

 Guest Column by Sen. Ned Claxton

AUGUSTA, ME (September 2, 2022) — It’s hard to believe that we are approaching the 21st anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on our nation. I know for me and so many other Americans, we can remember right where we were when we heard the news. Many of us sat there glued to our televisions, struggling to grasp the reality of the situation. It was a dark day for our country – nearly 3,000 people perished. We were shaken to our core. Among the pain that was felt, both by loved ones of the victims but also by Americans as a whole, there were those who made heroic efforts that day to save as many people as possible. These first responders displayed a truly remarkable amount of courage. On Sunday, Sept. 11, I will be attending the Auburn Fire Department’s ceremony honoring these heroes, as I have done for years. This is always a solemn but special ceremony, and I would encourage you to join if you’re able. It will take place at 8:15 a.m. at 550 Minot Ave. in Auburn.

In the Legislature, my colleagues and I know how critical our first responders and EMS personnel are, and we have worked to support them and help resolve the longstanding issues they face. One of the toughest issues is the workforce shortage, and while it’s hardly limited to EMS departments in Maine, the stakes are much higher when we can’t find folks to be there for us in our most dire times of need. Rural Maine communities have struggled the most with this in recent years, and despite EMS workers going above and beyond, working long hours and doing all they can to serve the community, we simply can’t get around the fact that we need more people in this profession.

One new law we passed this year established a new Blue Ribbon Commission to examine these issues. The commission, which had its first meeting on Sept. 1, will look for ways we can ensure EMS services are available to all Mainers, attract workers, improve workforce development, and more. There’s no doubt that these are complicated issues with no one simple solution, but by getting lawmakers, advocates and EMS personnel in a room together to discuss them, I’m hopeful that we will come away with recommendations that will make a real difference. 

Another new law we passed this year established a grant program for communities across Maine to plan for the future of EMS services in their area. Again, the workforce shortage is a huge issue. One disturbing statistic shows that Maine EMS departments have lost over 20 percent of personnel since 2013. This grant program will allow a department to plan for long term sustainability in a process known as “Informed Community Self-Determination.” This is where experts in rural EMS delivery work with local service providers in order to look at the department’s strengths, weaknesses, challenges and prospects for the future to become sustainable in the long term. That information is then shared with the folks in the community as a whole, so everyone can be knowledgeable about the current state of the department and be involved in shaping steps to move forward. We need to plan for the future and this new grant program will help us do that.

EMS providers do incredible, heroic work on a daily basis and are vital members of our community. However, they have been overworked, and faced too many challenges on their own without enough support. My colleagues and I are working hard to change that reality, so these folks can do their job, and Mainers can know that someone will be there to help when they have an emergency. I’m proud of the progress we were able to make in the last year.

As always, don’t hesitate to contact me by email at Ned.Claxton@legislature.maine.gov or by phone at (207) 287-1515.  

Nor’easters & Maine-ly Harmony “Singing Together Again”

AUGUSTA, ME (September 1, 2022) — The Nor’easters men’s barbershop chorus, based in Bath/Brunswick, directed by Kathy Robitaille, and Maine-ly Harmony women’s barbershop chorus, based in Augusta, directed by Kathy Greason, are pleased to be “Singing Together Again!” after two years of Pandemic silence! 

However there seems to be a hitch!  It’s a battle of the choruses when the women declare in song that they can do anything better than the men.  “Anything You Can Do (I Can Do Better)” is a show tune composed by Irving Berlin for the 1946 Broadway musical “Annie Get Your Gun.” 

The fun begins on Saturday, September 17, 2022, at 2 p.m. in the South Parish Congregational Church in Augusta.  For advanced ticket information to “Singing Together Again”, contact Barbara Combs at becombs@comcast.net, Kathy Robitaille at kattsy2@yahoo.com, Nancie Hugenbruch at 293-4779, or Lea Davis at 622-1273.

Below: The Nor’easters Men’s Barbershop Chorus and Maine-ly Harmony Women’s Barbershop Chorus. Photos courtesy of Kathy Robitaille and Lea Davis.


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