Stockton Springs Report
Some of the town news this week came from out of town. Upon reading last week's column, Town Manger Rich Couch emailed me with his thanks and input. It seems he spent the holidays with his family in upstate New York. He advised me that he ran into a former school friend who is a village trustee in the small village where he grew up. And, as we do when seeing old friends, they started comparing notes. He didn't say, but I think they may have been doing some “one up” dueling. Rich tells me the populations are about the same, except they are a village and Stockton Springs is a town. Stockton Springs has more saltwater (they have none in upstate New York), is larger geographically (29 square miles vs. 1.7 square miles). I do not know what the New York village had on their side of the scoreboard. I know that Rich got the idea for our upcoming senior luncheons from his parents, but I am confident that if it was anything else that we needed to work on, he would have told me. Go, Stockton.
The first of the aforementioned senior luncheons will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 9, at noon in the Town Hall. The doors will open at 11:30, and the suggested donation is $7. Seniors wishing to attend who need transportation can contact Jeff or Laverne Davis at 567-2029. The next luncheon is scheduled for Jan. 23, and luncheons will be held throughout the winter. Thank you, Gay Dion, for your support.
The Select Board convened on Jan. 3 and will meet again Jan. 17 at 6 p.m.
We are in the season of the year in which garbage freezes, and if you don't fill your trash can every week, you can leave the can in the garage on trash day until you fill it up. This can save you a few dollars each month. However, if you are not recycling, you probably won't get in on this savings. To help you along, I will list the things you can throw away for free. In the area of paper products we have cardboard boxes, newspaper and inserts, mail and catalogs, paper bags, colored paper, bagged or boxed shredded paper, office paper and envelopes, file folders, wrapping paper, phone books, paper plates, drink boxes and small milk cartons, cereal boxes, gift boxes and pizza boxes. The list also includes hard cover books, but I shall not advocate the disposal of books.
In the area of plastics, we have milk jugs (w/ caps), detergent bottles, all rigid containers marked with a #1 through #7 (Styrofoam is not accepted), water bottles, plastic shopping bags marked #2 or #4.
Metal items include tin cans, empty aerosol cans and aluminum cans or foil and pots and pans. All glass bottles and jars of any color are accepted. There is another list of forbidden items that is just as long. But it seems redundant. If it isn't on the accepted list, it's more than likely on the forbidden list.
Women over 40 volleyball
Pat Curley would like to invite all female residents over 40 to join the seasoned group of adults attempting to keep their bodies as active as their minds, as they move from their outdoor field at the yard of Dickie and Robbie Pendleton to their winter home at the Stockton Springs Elementary School gym. The start of the winter season is Jan. 7 at 6 p.m. Games will be played every Monday from 6. to 7:30 p.m. Join them if you have the right stuff.
American Legion news
The American Legion Jerry W. Dobbins Post 157 is planning a late January or early February 2013 Vietnam veterans recognition ceremony. The ceremony will include state of Maine recognition. If you are a Vietnam veteran living in Frankfort, Prospect, Searsport, Stockton Springs or Verona Island, please call Commander Lance Weddell to be included in the ceremony. He may be reached at 223-5357 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The following information is needed for inclusion in the ceremony: full name; dates and branch of service; rank. Your home of record did not have to be Maine while you were in service during the Vietnam era. Thank you, Post Adjutant Lee Snyder, for keeping us informed on Legion activities. And thank you, Stockton Springs veterans, for your service to town and country.
Recreation Department news
Basketball is in full swing now. We have one coed team of grades 3 and 4 and one coed team of grades 5 and 6. Grades K-2 will start practicing Sunday, Jan. 6. Once we get a game schedule we will announce it. Zumba is still on Tuesdays from 5-6 p.m. at the Stockton School. The cost is $3 per class. Zumba will also be on Saturday starting Jan. 5 from 9-10 a.m. at the Stockton School. If anyone has questions or would like an activity or event sponsored by the Recreation Department, they may call Candy Moore at 567-4330.
The state's oldest weekly newspaper
Earlier I wrote in jest about not disposing of books. I write in jest a lot. If you are going to read what I write, you might as well get used to it. However, when I write of my pride for contributing to Maine's oldest weekly paper, I am expressing true pride.
There is a current saying that it is better to have blogged and wasted an hour of your day than to never have blogged at all. One of the side effects of the Information Age is that we appear to have too much information. In cyber acronym, this is expressed as “TMI.” Nonetheless, it is extremely important that we document our time on this earth.
Lately, I have been on a new adventure, looking into the history of Stockton Springs. The first history of Maine was written 19 years after we achieved statehood, and our town is mentioned only in the context of the fort. Most in town are familiar with the histories written by Faustina Hichborn and Alice Ellis. However, both authors only discuss who gave us our beginnings and how that was accomplished. The answers to why we are here have not been explored to any degree. To find those answers, one must go beyond past historical interpretations, try to dig deeper and get the story from the horse's mouth.
Most people speak of Fort Pownal as the first of two forts on the Penobscot that never really saw much action. Fort Pownal was built the year before the end of the French and Indian War and was said to have been destroyed by brave patriots after the Tory commander gave up the fort's arms to the British. Closer examination reveals that Fort Pownal's worth was not in its cannon, but in the supplies held in its truckhouse. The importance of the diplomatic use of the fort, and its positive results, far outweighs its military use and demise.
You find those answers in old letters and old newspapers. That is the origin of my pride. Someday, they will be found in the records of old blogs. That is the origin of my acceptance of them. So, blog away, and if you get a chance, let someone know what is going on in the beautiful town of Stockton Springs.