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First snow

After the temperature dropped more than 40 degrees in just a few days, the town saw its first snowfall last week. The white stuff did not stay on the ground long and it sure was pretty to see the bare trees and conifers and bird feeders wrapped in snow. A number of cars drove off the sides of slippery morning roads and it makes you wonder why people don’t seem to remember how to drive in the stuff.

It also reminds Searsmonters that it is late November and winter is around the corner. Time to make sure the storm windows are up, houses are banked with hay or evergreen boughs, crawlspace vents are covered, windows are weatherized, wood is near the house for those cold nights, the bird feeders are filled for all the cardinals, jays, grosbeaks, chickadees and juncos that show up, and reflectors go up on the driveways for the snowplowers before the ground freezes. Don’t you wish you had a nickel for every reflector in town?

First snowfall in Searsmont on Nov. 17. Photo by Mickey Sirota

Town Office

The Nov. 14 selectmen’s work session was a busy one, as usual. The three elected officials will follow up on a Waldo Broadband Corp. request to use a piece of Community Center land (behind the Historical Society barn) for a small Searsmont fiber-optic switching structure, and to determine an appropriate rent for the land, so that the town will have a backup facility in case of issues elsewhere in the five-town system to be built out over the next two years. The town’s 2023-24 budget planning process is getting underway already. And there was a discussion of tree removal for safety and visibility on Moody Mountain, Muzzy Ridge and Magog roads.

Have you licensed your dog for 2023 yet? Time’s a’wastin’.

Crafts, anyone?

Katie Sweetland got in touch to let Searsmonters know that right after Thanksgiving, the Searsmont Crafting Group will be meeting every Tuesday evening from 6 to 9 p.m. downstairs at the Community Building. Anyone working on quilts, knitting, wool projects, rug making or “what have you” is invited to bring your project to the group. Everyone is welcome, Katie says. For more information, check the Facebook site at Tuesday Searsmont Quilting/Crafting Etc Group.

Bits and pieces

Robin Dow and Arnold Oulton, Searsmont’s animal control officers, remind you that “if you hit a dog or cat with your car, please contact the town’s animal control officers or the local police department (in Searsmont, that’s the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office). Accidents happen and there is no fine. This way, people will know what happened to their furry loved one.”

Robin and Arnold respond to about 200 animal incidents a year, so they know what they’re talking about. And it seems like the right thing to do.

The week’s Thanksgiving preparations kept the kitchen warm, you betcha. The smells of squash, pumpkin and apple pies, buttered carrots, turkey gravy and homemade cranberry sauce brought back a lot of memories and got us ready for the good food and good company on the day itself. Best wishes for a happy, healthy, joyful holiday to everyone in Searsmont. And wasn’t it a shock to see Christmas shopping ads pop up so early this year?

The number of deer registrations at the village store is climbing up toward the 100 mark, with about a week still to go. Congratulations to Searsmont’s successful hunters, and a shoutout to those whose bucks approached or exceeded 200 pounds.

Speaking of deer hunting, please wear your blaze orange when you go out on foot or on your bike. Be careful out there. Since the state issued so many “any deer” permits, folks have noticed an awful lot of out-a-townahs’ cars and trucks parked along the sides of Searsmont’s roads. Seems that with so many towns filled with posted land, hunters are coming here. They may not be familiar with where people and houses are located.

Your town correspondents thank all those who checked in to find out how we were coming along after contracting COVID-19. Makes us all the more appreciative of just how wonderful it is to live here. The bad news is that we got it after avoiding infection for more than 2 1/2 years and served as a reminder of just how fragile a person’s health can be. The good news is that, fully vaccinated and boostered, the symptoms were mild, after two weeks the home tests showed negative, and we are once again out and about.