Congratulations to Avian Haven, which won one of Bangor Savings Bank Foundation’s 2021 Community Matters $4,000 grants. Located on North Palermo Road, Avian Haven plans to use this money to build new habitat buildings and help manage the “baby season” — the part of the spring and summer where many baby birds are taken in. Last year more than a thousand orphaned nestlings were rehabilitated by Avian Haven; the sanctuary anticipates the same number this year.

Further congratulations to the Freedom Congregational Church’s new Pastoral Team. April Turner, James Seaman and Bennett Verbeck were appointed, and add new growth to a church that already is increasing its presence through online services during the pandemic area. The church has effectively used social media and Zoom, and now hundreds of people log in for Sunday services. You can find them on Facebook, at “@FreedomCongregationalChurch.”

The Pastoral Team can officiate weddings, funerals, and baptisms, and its members are available to visit hospitals, nursing homes and private homes for prayer and communion. What a great example of the silver lining of this pandemic — people helping other people and staying connected through electronic means.

Speaking of staying connected through electronic means, please go to mainebroadbandcoalition.org/landing, and click on “run speed test.” This data will help broadband advocacy groups see where the internet signal is lacking in Maine, and help form solutions to fix this problem.

As the weather warms up, folks should take advantage of Freedom’s various nature trails, Sandy Pond, and recreational areas. I try to get out for runs, so if you see me on Greeley or North Palermo Road, give a wave. My goal is to jog from Beaver Ridge down to the Town Office by the end of the summer. My personal record is jogging from Beaver Ridge, down Greeley Road, North Palermo, and stopping to walk at Sibley Road. Maybe this will be the year I’ll get down to the village.

Please be mindful of folks running or walking on the side of the road — with how rolling our hills are, it would be very easy to accidentally sneak up on someone on the side of the road.

If you are looking for a trail, I recommend the “AllTrails” phone app. You can input your location and it will show you trails near you based on your selected difficulty or elevation level.

My wife and I are thinking of starting a garden outside our house, but don’t know what to grow. We’re thinking of a herb garden, but would welcome other suggestions. Anyone have any ideas?

Finally, the Freedom Town Meeting will be held at the Mount View High School gym on Saturday, April 17, starting at 10 a.m. The doors will open at 9:30 a.m. so people can register to vote before the meeting. There will be a special town meeting immediately after the regular town meeting. This is because of some new developments after the Town Report came out in mid-March.