Greetings, November.

Since columns are written a week in advance, a few things will have happened by the time this appears in the paper. Halloween will be over and the festivities were suspended this year. I heard from more than a few angry people and many more who planned fun things for their children to do at home — thank you to those.

Daylight Saving will have ended with "fall back," but do we really need an extra hour of 2020? The election will be over — I can finally stop getting rid of up to 10 pieces of campaign junk mail per day!

At the risk of sounding like a broken record (can't help it, I'm a nurse), please continue to follow the protocols: masking, hand-washing, distancing. Flu season is upon us in addition to COVID-19, and no matter what the current administration says, the pandemic is far from under control or over. We've been very fortunate for the most part here in Maine, but we've seen what can happen when the protocols are ignored.

The Brooks Rec Department has launched a new fundraising initiative. You can now donate your bottles to them. Bring your (clean) bottles to the Town Office during regular business hours or to the Transfer Station. It's a great idea and very convenient. What I think of as a mountain of bottles usually turns out to yield about $5, and every little bit can help.

'How to Properly Dispose of Worn-out U.S. Flags' by Dan Miron

Many Americans proudly fly the U.S. flag at their homes or workplaces, but what do you do when it's old and worn and you're ready for a new one?

Don't just throw it in the trash like any other item – that's disrespectful. Just as there is an etiquette for displaying Old Glory, there is also an etiquette for disposing of old flags in a dignified manner.

Many towns have collection bins to receive old flags for proper disposal. In Brooks we have a bin at the Town Office. Simply deposit your old flag and it will be retired with proper honors by the American Legion. The U.S. flag is considered a sacred symbol and should be retired in a dignified ceremony.

This year's flag burning ceremony will take place on Nov. 11 at 10 a.m. at the Brooks Fire Station, weather permitting. The public is welcome to attend.

Until next week…stay healthy and be warm.