Washington news

By Charlotte Henderson | Mar 29, 2014
Courtesy of: Charlotte Henderson Washington Historical Society president, Wendy Carr and members Liz Grinnell and Charlotte Henderson admire the Non-Profit of the Year certificate presented by Union Area Chamber of Commerce member Martha Johnston-Nash at its annual meeting.

Grange raises $$ for Science Olympiad

Washington Grange provided a fabulous snack area at town meeting to benefit Medomak Middle School’s Science Olympiad team. The result was a whopping $500 for these talented kids. MMS students recently won the state Science Olympiad competition for the second year in a row and are raising money to travel to Florida in May for the nationals. Maddy Kelly, the S/O coach thanked Evening Star members for this outstanding effort. Wonderful.

Union Chamber awards WHS

Washington Historical Society was named Non-Profit of the Year by Union Area Chamber of Commerce at its annual meeting last week. The award was given in recognition of the society’s reorganization and growth, its numerous public programs, the acquisition of historical documents and artifacts, and forward-looking plan to create a small museum at the Original Old Town House, 264 Razorville Road. WHS president, Wendy Carr, was present to accept the award along with the group’s archivist Liz Grinnell and member Charlotte Henderson. WHS meets monthly on the third Tuesday in the Bryant Room of Gibbs Library. Other Chamber awards included Muriel Heath, Outstanding Citizen; Lyle Cramer, Volunteer of the Year; and Sweetgrass Winery, Business of the Year. Congratulations to all.

Municipal election and meeting

Best wishes to Duane Vigue and Guy Bourrie on their reelections as selectman and Washington school board rep, respectively.

As has been the case in recent years, the meeting moved fairly quickly through the articles with Wes Richardson as moderator. The best thing about walking through each question is when some kind of clarification or explanation is requested. That’s the time when I learn a little more about how town governance works. It’s amazing how complex everything is. What we do here in our little town has to be compatible with rules from the state and the feds, guidelines of Maine Municipal Association, and other entities — who knows? It does seem, though, that the select board and town clerk know. They and the Budget Committee figure out most of the possible confusion and the town warrant comes to us with explanations written right in. For me, in my first town-meeting-type community, it’s a big plus to take part just by being there.

All of the articles were voted in including repaving Mountain Road, accepting funds from Levensaler Cemetery Trustees and taking over its care, and renewing the town’s membership in Midcoast Regional Planning Commission. Townspeople also voted for a one-time donation to the historical society’s renovation of the Original Old Town House.

Palermo movies presents "Grounded"

The regular last-Friday-of-the-month movie at Palermo Community Center is “Grounded.” An orphaned moose named Karen and a grizzly named Kitty co-star with Dr. David Suzuki in this true tale filmed in Haines, Alaska. "Grounded" is a test of healing techniques known by ancient civilizations for thousands of years. The movie will be shown following a 6 p.m. potluck dinner at the Palermo Community Center on Turner Ridge Road this Friday, March 28. Everyone is welcome to participate in the potluck or just come for the movie. For further info, please contact Connie Bellet at 993-2294.

Maine beers have long history

Josh Christie entertained an appreciative audience at Washington Historical Society’s meeting last week as he talked about the history of beer in Maine. Christie, who grew up in Washington, is a blogger and writer whose new book “Maine Beer: Brewing in Vacationland” tells about the evolution of beer brewing here in the state and goes on to present the story of Maine’s microbreweries and craft beer makers. One of the many interesting facts Christie presented is that because the state had a lot of heavy beer drinkers, concerned citizens mounted a campaign for abstinence. That eventually led to our state’s Legislature voting Maine “dry” — which outlawed manufacture, distribution, importation, and sale of alcoholic beverages. This law stayed in effect until national Prohibition was repealed by the 21st Amendment in 1933. But, guess when our state actually went dry! 1851! — long before nationwide Prohibition was mandated in 1920. Christie said that early beers were mostly dark and the process of making lager beers came much later. He joked that he would have brought some samples but that there was probably some rule against that. [True. Gibbs Library, the VFW Hall and Evening Star Grange all have no alcohol policies.] Cookies and punch were served, however, and it was really fine evening. Josh Christie’s book is on sale in bookstores and through his blog page brewsandbooks.com . Many thanks, Josh.

Oily soot closes VFW

When a furnace puff-back filled the VFW Hall with black smoke and soot a couple of weeks ago, little did they realize how long they would be homeless. Fortunately, insurance will help with the expense of cleaning the building and all its contents, but the paperwork is going to take some time. Meanwhile, they are planning a raffle to raise money for a new furnace and restoring the items they lost. We’ll be announcing the raffle as soon as we hear the date. We’re sorry to hear about this tough break.

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