Welcome, Israel!

My wife and I are excited to announce that our son, Israel Robert Gran, was born on Jan. 9 at 8:26 a.m. He came into this world weighing 10 pounds even, and was 22 inches long. He will be known as Israel to most, but to me, he will be Opie — a moniker honoring my favorite character on my favorite broadcast, "The Andy Griffith Show."

We chose the name Israel because of the 32nd chapter of the Book of Genesis, where Jacob becomes Israel. Jacob is renamed Israel (which is loosely translated "God Fights") after overcoming his struggle with God and with man.

The name Robert is in honor of my paternal grandfather's Uncle Bob, my great-great uncle. My grandfather, father, myself, and now Israel all share the middle name Robert.

Bantam Cafe takes a hiatus

Winterport's newest restaurant, the Bantam Cafe, will be closed from Jan. 22 to Feb. 6 for a winter break and cafe maintenance. They will open again on Feb. 7. The owners said to expect some new menu items at their re-opening.

Rabies clinic Feb. 2

The Waldo County Humane Society will hold its final free rabies clinic of the season on Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Leroy H. Smith School, 319 S. Main St. in Winterport, from 9 to 11 a.m. Dr. Rachel Emerson of Ridge Runner Veterinary Services will be administering shots. This will be the last free clinic until the fall. If your dog needs a rabies shot to get licensed, this is the time to get it done. Cats are welcome, too.

Rabies shots are free to pet owners residing in Waldo County. Pets from other counties are welcome for a fee of $7. Donations will be gratefully accepted. Please bring all animals on leashes or in portable pet carriers. Remember to bring your previous rabies records so your pet will received a 3-year shot.

In addition to the rabies shot, coupon discounts toward the cost of having pets spayed or neutered will be available. For further information about the clinic, call 852-5033 or 323-6308. The Waldo County Humane Society is also on Facebook.

Charles Pattavina, M.D., 'Doctor of the Day'

Rep. Scott Cuddy, a Winterport resident, and Sen. Erin Herbig of Belfast welcomed Charles Pattavina, M.D., back to the State House to serve as the Doctor of the Day for both the House and Senate. Also from Winterport, Dr. Pattavina is an emergency medicine doctor at St. Joseph Hospital in Bangor.

The Wooden Spoon closes

Owners of The Wooden Spoon, a bakery housed in the former location of The Bacon Tree Restaurant, permanently closed their doors on Dec. 19, 2018. They said that as they look to 2019, they may be offering limited classes or dinners in pop-up locations. They are grateful for all of the people they met in their travels. They thanked all their customers for supporting small, local businesses.

From the Recreation Department

Rec. Director Greg DaSilva announced the opening of the public skating rink at Abbott Park for anyone who wants to hit the ice. DaSilva announced that he will be hosting skate nights in the near future; however, the weather is truly the determining factor as to when they're held.

Residents can expect fire barrels, brownies and hot chocolate on these nights as people skate under the lights. The ice rink is free to use and is located at the end of Park Drive, near the Victoria Grant Civic Center. There are also areas for sledding on the opposite side of the parking lot.

Register for kindergarten, pre-K

The Leroy H. Smith School will hold kindergarten and pre-kindergarten registration Thursday, Feb. 28, from noon to 5 p.m. in the school conference room. Children don't have to be present to be registered. You should bring the student’s certification of vital record, proof of residency, immunization record and a recent photograph with you.

To enter kindergarten in the fall, students must be 5 years old, and for pre-K they must be 4, on or before Oct. 15, and they must be legal residents of Winterport or Frankfort.

For questions about kindergarten, call Debbie at the Smith School at 223-4282. For pre-K questions, call Deb Palmer at 338-3827.

Until next time, that's all from the only place on earth called "Winterport."