Editor's note: We're pleased to introduce our new town correspondent for Monroe, Ashlie Stubbs. Thank you, Ashlie, for reporting news from Monroe!

Hello and welcome to September!

Summer is slipping away quickly now. Dried leaves have already started blanketing my driveway and my thoughts are slowly shifting to pumpkins, mums, cornstalks, longer sleeves and heartier meals. Walks along some of Monroe‘s back roads are showing beautiful displays of golden rod, Queen Anne’s Lace and soon to erupt milkweed. What signs are you seeing and what are your thoughts shifting toward as fall approaches?

My name is Ashlie Stubbs and I am looking forward to writing the weekly column for the residents of Monroe and other Republican Journal readers. Though I am not a true Monroe native, my husband, Ethan, and I are certainly no strangers to Waldo County. I grew up in Palermo and Ethan in Brooks. We moved to our farm in Monroe in June of 2018 and plan to keep digging our roots in deep.

In fact, we have already expanded our family this summer, welcoming our first son, Oliver, into our hearts and lives. We are excited to raise our family here. I taught and coached in Regional School Unit 3 for 10 years — two years at Monroe Elementary School and eight years at Mount View Middle School — so I am fortunate to know many families and have already made many meaningful connections to this area.

One of my favorite things to do in Monroe is attend and enjoy the delicious ethnic-themed meals organized by the Monroe Community Church. This past month I, and many others, had the pleasure of enjoying their Hawaiian menu. Highlights of the meal for me included the Huli Huli chicken entree and, my personal favorite, the Coconut Mochi Butter Cake with lime curd and grilled pineapple served with Stone Fox Farm coconut ice cream! Thank you to the church for hosting such wonderful community meals!

From our farms

Dickey Hill Farm, run by James and Noami, has been busy transplanting all their winter greens into their green houses. They grow fresh greens, like spinach and kale, all winter long! You can find them year-round at the Friday Farmers’ Markets in Belfast. Through the end of October, they are at the Waterfall Arts location on High Street, and beginning on Fridays in November, they will be indoors at Aubuchon Hardware on Route 1. If you have not met them or seen their beautiful displays of produce, plan to visit them soon! You can find more information on Facebook or at

Hooper’s Orchard is now open for the season! Current hours are Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Apple Store is open and will include products like fresh cider, pears, peaches, and local honey, as well as apples!

The corn maze this year has a new dinosaur hunt built in. Kids search for 10 different dinosaurs and record the names of the dinosaurs they find. They can turn in their completed list at the Apple Store for a prize! Cost to do the corn maze is $9 for adults and $8 for kids.

Hooper’s main crop apple, Honeycrisp, pick your own will start Friday, Sept. 20. The orchard will be hosting its annual Pig Roast on Sept. 21. Follow their Facebook page, or call 323-8226 for more information. The orchard address is 856 Back Brooks Road, Monroe.

I look forward to highlighting town and organization events and information, as well as other news pieces (including special segments on our town’s students and businesses) in future columns. Please contact me if you have particular news you would like shared.