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This week’s edition!

Outdoor Memorial Day Masses Set for Lewiston 

LEWISTON, ME (May 19, 2022) — Bishop Robert Deeley will celebrate a Memorial Day Mass on Monday, May 30, at 10 a.m. at St. Peter’s Cemetery on 217 Switzerland Road in Lewiston. All are invited to this Mass, which is an occasion to pray for all our deceased loved ones, especially those who served our nation and have now gone home to the Lord.

The origins of Memorial Day date back to the Civil War when many cities and towns would set aside a day to remember those who died in the war. Originally called Decoration Day, it was officially proclaimed by General John Logan, commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, on May 5, 1868, and was first observed on May 30 of that year when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers buried at Arlington National Cemetery. In 1971, Congress passed a law placing the celebration of Memorial Day on the last Monday in May.

Lewiston: St. Peter’s Cemetery

217 Switzerland Road

10 a.m. (Bishop Robert Deeley will preside at th

Music in the Park Summer Concert Series Begins May 27 

LEWISTON, ME (May 12, 2022) — The 2022 Music in the Park summer concert series begins on May 27 in Kennedy Park, Lewiston from 7-9 pm, and continues after each Art Walk L/A on final Fridays through September, 2022. Bring a lawn chair or blanket and enjoy some free, live music in the park! 

On May 27, LA Arts presents performances by:

Lewiston Elementary All-Star Orchestra Lewiston Elementary students comprise this strings ensemble led by Greg Boardman; 

Forêt Endormie Forêt Endormie is a chamber ensemble formed in 2016 by Falls of Rauros guitarist and composer Jordan Guerette, hailing from the “Forest City” of Portland, Maine (USA). Baxter Brewing Co. will be on site in Kennedy Park with refreshments. 

If you’re looking for a snack on your way to the park, try these spots on Lisbon St.: Sambusas and Somali tea at Mogadishu Store, 240 Lisbon St.; David-Made Pizza at Forage, 180 Lisbon St.; Spicy Tots at Boba, 97 Lisbon St. 

Music in the Park and all LA Arts programs would not be possible without the generous support of community partners including Community Arts Champion and Advocate sponsors Austin Associates, P.A., Bates College, Baxter Brewing Co., Berman & Simmons, the City of Auburn, the City of Lewiston, Liberty Mutual, Munka Coworking, the Sun Journal 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. 

Lewiston Elementary All-Star Orchestra

Head Downtown for Art Walk L/A May 27 

LEWISTON, ME (May 13, 2022) —  The 2022 Art Walk L/A season begins on May 27, 2022 from 5-7 pm and continues on final Fridays of each month through September. Enjoy live, in-person arts experiences in more than a dozen locations along Lisbon Street in downtown Lewiston, including a performance by the Lewiston High School Jazz Band in Dufresne Plaza at 5 p.m.* And stay downtown for the first Music in the Park summer concert from 7-9 p.m. in Kennedy Park.  Join us!

Art Downtown

Check out visual arts on display at these and other Art Walk LA venues:

The Studio, 291 Lisbon St. Artists Grayling Cunningham and friends

Lewiston Public Library, 200 Lisbon St. Photographer Stephen Harris, plus a book sale! 

Kimball Street Studios, 191 Lisbon St. redux, portraits by Kate Cargile 

Forage, 180 Lisbon St. the CROW, works by Deanna Ehrhardt 

Downtown Handmade, 182 Lisbon St., 2nd floor. Proprietor Sheri Withers Hollenbeck and friends 

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.

Spicy Tots at Boba, 97 Lisbon St.

Music in the Park summer concert series

After the art walk, head to Kennedy Park for more music! This month’s concert features

Lewiston Elementary All Star Orchestra

Forêt Endormie

Art Walk LA and all LA Arts programs would not be possible without the generous support of community partners including Community Arts Champion and Advocate sponsors Austin Associates, P.A., Bates College, Baxter Brewing Co., Berman & Simmons, the City of Auburn, the City of Lewiston, Liberty Mutual, Munka Coworking, the Sun Journal 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

Downtown Handmade

City of Auburn Invites Public to Memorial Monument Dedication

AUBURN, ME (May 17, 2022) — Please join the City of Auburn Friday as we unveil two beautiful new monuments honoring the veterans who served America in wartime and military conflict.

Memorial Monument Dedication Ceremony; Friday, May 27 at 10:00AM at Mt. Auburn Cemetery (please park on Summer Street).

During the initial days of Covid, when our historically large gatherings at Veterans’ Park were cancelled, the City of Auburn decided to hold an outdoor ceremony at a long-forgotten memorial at Mount Auburn Cemetery which was erected in 1946 by the Lions Club of Auburn. The memorial listed major conflicts in American history up to World War 2. It was later updated to include the Korean and Vietnam conflicts but had not been updated since 1975.

On that day, Mayor Jason Levesque promised those in attendance that the city would erect new stones to appropriately recognize a new generation of veterans, from Grenada to Panama, from the Cold War to the Persian Gulf War and the Global War on Terror. The Auburn City Council appropriated funding, the stones were designed, and now they are done and are ready to be unveiled for our community. Promises made, promises kept.

2021 Blue Mass featured heroes, dignitaries

Governors Mills and LePage and Senator Collins in attendance

From Portland Diocese

LEWISTON – A day of gratitude on Sunday, Sept. 19, honoring the fallen, and praying for the safety of heroes among us began with the sound of marching heels walking down the main aisle of the Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul.

Visible on the Bartlett Street side of the basilica were ladder trucks from the Lisbon and Lewiston Fire Departments displaying a massive American flag high in the air as a multi-jurisdictional honor guard comprised of members of four different public safety departments solemnly posted the colors in front of the sanctuary.

An assembly of hundreds stood in silence, with the pews full of either first responders or those wishing to thank them.

Moments later, Bishop Robert Deeley, priests, and deacons processed in, starting the 2021 Blue Mass venerable tradition in the Diocese of Portland that never loses its luster or lacks in meaning.

Policemen stand at attention as priests from the Portland Diocese start the Blue Mass at the Basilica of Saints Peter & Paul in Lewiston on Sunday, Sept. 19. (Photo courtesy of Portland Diocese).

The Blue Mass is named for the blue uniforms that firefighters, law enforcement and other first responders wear. It dates back to 1934 and recognizes the dedication and self-sacrifice of all first responders.

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Lewiston litter pick-up day Oct. 16

From City of Lewiston

LEWISTON – Lewiston Public Works is welcoming individuals and teams to again join them for a “Lewiston Citywide Litter Pick Up Day.”

The fall pick up event will take place Saturday, Oct. 16, from 8 a.m.-noon, and participants may pick up litter in their own neighborhood or anywhere in the city that they see a need.

Church or community groups are also encouraged to adopt an area. There is no fee to participate. Participants may register/agree to the event waiver online and identify the location they will clean at www.lewistonmaine.gov/litterevent

Lewiston Public Works staff will be on site at Kennedy Park on event day to distribute supplies: bags, gloves, pickers, and buckets.

A safety procedure flyer will be given out with supplies outlining safe practices for participation, as well as available online at www.lewistonmaine.gov/littersafety

In addition, a safety station pop-up tent will be on site at Kennedy Park. Items deemed unsafe for pick up should be “called into” Public Works Dispatch for same-day pick up by trained personnel (207) 513-3000, X3450. An event flyer and safety guidelines are attached.

Participants will also have disposal options for what they pick up.

Bags of collected litter may be returned to Kennedy Park for disposal at a drop-off site near park gazebo.

Public Works will pick up bags of litter at a specified location if previously stated on online registration/waiver form OR called into Public Works Dispatch the morning of the event (207) 513-3000, X3450.

Residents may put collected bags of litter at curbside with their regular weekly curbside pick-up.

Participating teams will be eligible to win a prize by posting pics of their team picking up litter and using a #nolitter tag! Prize categories are Biggest Team, Most Creative, Most Colorful!

Just-In-Time Recreation opens its doors

From LA Metro Chamber

LEWISTON – Just-In-Time Recreation at 24 Mollison Way in Lewiston officially opened its doors with a ribbon-cutting ceremony last week.

Justin Juray cuts the ribbon to celebrate the opening of the recently-renovated Just-In-Time Recreation, in a ceremony last week at the facility at 24 Mollison Way in Lewiston. (Photo courtesy of LA Metro Chamber)

 City of Lewiston Economic + Community Development Director Lincoln Jeffers was joined by the President + CEO of the LA Metro Chamber Shanna Cox, LA Metro Board Chair and CEO of Lucro Management Jessica Donovan, Karen Staples of Senator Susan Collins’ Office, and members of the public. 

 “Our goal at Just-In-Time is to provide a comfortable, relaxed, and welcome atmosphere for people to visit and spend time with one another while having a good time.  It’s a joy to see people smile and feel that they got what they paid for – and maybe a little more, whether it’s for a birthday party or a night out.  We are thrilled to support the LA area by partnering with local businesses including Blackies, Grants Bakery, Roopers Beverage, DeBlois Electric, and Nadeau’s Refrigeration for their products and services.  We see a bright future for the family-friendly game of bowling, as well as the region,” said owner Justin Juray.

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Maine leads the way in protecting right to vote

Guest Essay

By Sen. Libby

Dear Friend,

Tuesday of last week was National Voter Registration Day.

Maine has long been a leader in voter participation, with 78 percent of voters casting their ballots in the 2020 election. We also have some of the strongest voting laws in the nation, and I’m proud of the work we did this year to make sure Maine continues to lead the way in strengthening our democracy and protecting your right to vote.

Sen. Nate Libby (D-Lewiston), Maine District 21, the City of Lewiston. (Photo courtesy of Sen. Libby)

This year, my colleagues and I voted to make permanent many of the innovative measures the state put in place to make voting accessible and safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also passed a law to join 40 other states in allowing online voter registration, which is set to go into effect in 2023.

If you’ve moved recently, now is a good time to register to vote at your new address. And as a reminder, Maine also has same-day voter registration, which means you can register to vote at your polling place the day of an election.

Our democracy only works when everyday people can make their voices heard and hold their elected leaders accountable. I’m proud of the work we’ve done this year, and I vote to continue to protect Maine voters’ rights.

If you have questions, concerns or ideas, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. You can always reach me at nathan.libby@legislature.maine.gov  or by phone at (207) 287-1515.

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Shelter hosts pet portrait fundraiser

From GAHS

LEWISTON – The Greater Androscoggin Humane Society is hosting a “Practically Purrfect Pet Portraits” fundraiser.

All funds raised during this whimsical fundraiser will go towards the purchase of a new industrial washing machine, dryer and generator for the shelter.

For $25 per pet, a pet’s photo will be randomly assigned one of more than 100 volunteer artists.  Ranging from professional artists to local students (or maybe even a GAHS staff member or volunteer!); pet owners will have their very own practically purrfect artistic rendering of your precious companion. 

To sign up for the fundraiser, submit payment at http://bitly.ws/gwIF

Once payment has been made, post a pet photo to the event’s Facebook page at http://bitly.ws/gwIH.

If someone doesn’t have access to Facebook, a photo can be emailed to giving@gahumane.org.

The event formally kicked off on Monday.

Once the picture has been posted to the event’s Facebook page, per owners can expect a digital copy of the portrait to be posted within 2 weeks. Depending on the artist, physical copies may also be available for pick-up at the shelter.

The Greater Androscoggin Humane Society provides a safe haven for over 3,000 sick, homeless, needy and abused animals in the greater Androscoggin area per year. The primary support for the Shelter comes from fundraising events and donations of caring citizens. 

The Humane Society is located at 55 Strawberry Avenue in Lewiston.

Anyone interested in volunteering as an artist, please call the shelter at 783-2311 or email giving@gahumane.org.

Anyone interested in adopting an animal should visit available pets on their website at www.SavingPetsInMaine.org.

Pet lovers can also join them on www.facebook/GAHumane.

Tutu time again for Dempsey Challenge rider

By Nathan Tsukroff

LEWISTON – It was tutu time again for Dennis Richardson of Turner as he rode for the seventh time in the Dempsey Challenge.

He’s been riding his bike in the annual Challenge since Patrick Dempsey, a childhood friend, challenged him to stop smoking in 2014.

Richardson participated last year wearing a pink tutu to signify the fight against breast cancer, and a purple tutu to represent the fight against pancreatic cancer.

This year, he wore just the pink tutu, with a pink tiara perched atop his bicycle helmet, and added pink pom-poms on his shoes, another gift from a friend and supporting fundraiser in New Jersey.

Dennis Richardson of Turner warms up for the Dempsey Challenge in a recent ride through downtown Lewiston, sporting the pink tutu and tiara he committed to wear if he met his fundraising goal for this year. Setting an initial goal of $10,000, Richardson had raised over $14,000 by Sunday, the day of the ride. (Tsukroff photo)

Despite his claims to “hate wearing the tutu,” Richardson rides with a smile as he acknowledges the waves and smiles of passers-by, and the honks of drivers.

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