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Archive for January 2012

TCT Bridal Guide! See pages 9-16

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Auburn Winter Fest kicks off Friday

See complete schedule of Winterfest events in TCT Digital Edition, page 24. For more information about events or to volunteer, call Auburn Parks and Recreation at 333-6600 or visit www.auburnmaine.org.

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LA Trails offers snowshoe hike at Winter Festival

LA Trails, the urban trails program of the Androscoggin Land Trust, will kick off its winter season of snowshoe hikes as part of the City of Auburn’s Annual Winter Festival. The first hike will occur at Mt. Apatite Park on Saturday, January 28.

Dana Little, local LA Trails volunteer, will lead participants of all ages along all-season trails with mild gradients. There will be hiking regardless of the weather or the amount of snow, and it will last approximately two hours, depending on the ability level and desire of the participants.

During the walk, Dana will identify birds and animal tracks, and trail maps of the Mt. Apatite Park as well as LA Trails maps will be available for all hikers.

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LePage: Coalition initiative would increase cost of electricity

By Governor Paul R. LePage

The State House halls are filled with policymakers, the bell is ringing and debates have begun. Once again, Maine’s Legislators are in the State House, working for you.

I stand by my promise to put people before politics and pledge to do what’s best for Maine people. During the next few months, you will hear the word “jobs” from both Democrats and Republicans.

In the first year of my administration Maine’s unemployment rate has gone down from 7.6 percent to 7 percent. However, there is more work to be done. Nearly 50,000 people are still out of work and many are worried about job security.

Democrats and Republicans alike have similar goals this session; but we have different ideas on how to achieve them.

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“Education Evolving” would engage students, evaluate teachers

Commissioner unveils education plan

Students will play a more active role in organizing their own learning and have more choice—such as internships, inter-disciplinary classes, independent study, and vocational education—in how they learn and achieve standards, according to a strategic plan for education unveiled by Maine’s education commissioner.

Stephen Bowen unveiled his much-anticipated plan, “Education Evolving: Maine’s Plan for Putting Learners First,” on January 17 at the Capital Area Technical Center in Augusta. He shared the spotlight with five students from four schools who spoke about their own educational experiences in classrooms where they had a say in determining their own educational path.

“Governor LePage made it clear to me from the start that he wants an educational system that put kids first, a system where kids are at the center,” Bowen said. “That is the direction that we are proposing to go in.”

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Mayor’s Column—Enough is Enough

Change is difficult, but it is good

By Robert Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

Absence does not always make the heart grow fonder. All 240 pounds of me was born, raised, grew up and lived half of my life in the Athens of America—Boston. It is not my intent to bore you, the reader, with details of my rather exciting past life in an exceptionally exciting city.

Rather, I’d like to note several unremarkable incidents during my time in Boston, which contrast with incidents that have currently taken on apocalyptic dimensions in Lewiston.

In the mid 1960s during the bleak winter nights my brother and I would MBTA it to the Boston Garden to watch the Bruins—lose. Time passed, the Bruins started winning and soon a new home was needed. TD Bank Garden replaced the legendary Boston Garden, a place that held a lot of history but, alas, had outlived its usefulness.

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Museum L-A invites community to partake in a multi-year “The Power of Music” exhibit

A group representing various aspects of the local music scene is gathering regularly at Museum L-A to help plan a three-year, six-series exhibit highlighting the rich history of music in the Twin Cities and how it has shaped the community—then and now.

The series, titled “The Power of Music,” will launch in late July with “The Power of Music: Photographic Portraits of Americans and their Musical Instruments, 1860-1915” and will continue chronologically with five more exhibits through April 2015.

“Delving into our oral histories for inspiration, we have learned about the importance of music not only for individuals but for the whole community,” said Rachel Desgrosseilliers, Museum L-A’s executive director. “Music is collective and communal. It is a connector between generations, as well as an industry that brings and binds people together, fitting right in with the museum’s mission.”

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Chamber announces awards to honor community leaders

Each year The Androscoggin County Chamber of Commerce honors a number of organizations and individuals for their significant contributions to our communities. This year’s awards will be presented on Thursday, February 9 at the Chamber’s 124th Annual Meeting at the Ramada Conference Center in Lewiston.

The Business Leadership Award for a larger company will be presented to Agren Appliance. In 1969 the Agren family business consisted of a phone and two repair trucks. Routine weekday calls for appliance repair, emergency responses on weekends and over critical holiday periods helped build Agren’s reputation for reliability with many Maine families.

Their first store was established in auburn in 1978, the fourth store opened its doors on Foden Road in South Portland in 1993, and the fifth was established along the Mid-Coast in Damariscotta in 2000 (later moved to a busier Route 1 in Waldoboro in 2006).

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Mayor’s Corner: Enough is Enough—Lewistonians must change from naysayers to cheerleaders

Lewiston Mayor Bob Macdonald

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

10-08. Welcome to TCT’s newest mayor’s column: “Enough is Enough.” Leaving an enjoyable retirement, I humbly assume the Office of Mayor and take the reins of one of the Top 10 retirement cities in the U.S. Meanwhile, my predecessor and former boss, Laurent F. Gilbert Sr., and his wife Pat go 10-07, hopefully into a long and happy retirement.

Before proceeding, I would be remiss in not publicly recognizing and thanking those whose participation made Lewiston’s Inaugural a first-class event. Thank you to Rita Dube for allowing the ceremony to be held at the Franco American Heritage Center and Richard Martin for his work on the sound system and logistics. This venue elevated the event into something very special.

Thanks also to the Lewiston City Clerk’s Office and Dottie Perham-Whittier for their outstanding work.

The invocation by the Rev. Douglas Taylor and the benediction by Father Bob Vaillancourt reminded those on stage of their obligations as elected officials. Blais Flower and Garden Center did an excellent job of sprucing up the stage.

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Adult student finds success through College Transition Program

Victoria Forbis, Lewiston Adult Education GED and College Transitions Program graduate and full-time CMCC student.

When Victoria Forbis left her job as an assistant seafood manager at a local grocery store in 2009, she didn’t know what to do next. She had plenty of work experience—including nearly 10 years at the grocery store—but it quickly became clear that her lack of a high school diploma would hold her back from the kind of work she wanted.

“I’d left school in seventh grade,” Forbis said. “I realized that the way things are these days, you need the education to get a job. I have the life experience and the work experience, but I needed the secondary education.”

So Forbis went to Lewiston Adult Education to start working on her GED. It took her just five months of taking classes and studying to pass the GED tests. She graduated with the class of 2010. Impressed with her academic abilities and work ethic, GED instructor Mary McNulty encouraged Forbis to start thinking about college, and take Lewiston Adult Education’s College Transition Program (CTP).

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