Washington news

By Charlotte Henderson | Feb 22, 2019

The General to thank patrons

Washington General Store will have its 4th Annual Customer Appreciation Day tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 22. The event will include door prizes and treats throughout the day. Sean, Amy and the crew are proud and grateful for the success of Washington General and hope everyone will stop in tomorrow and join the fun. The General has become an important feature in our little town, so this is also a chance to say a thank-you right back. Be there if you can.

Gibbs book group

Tonight, Feb. 21, at 7 p.m. the book group at Gibbs Library will meet to discuss “The Library Book” by Susan Orlean. Everyone is welcome to sit in on the book group. Coming up for the March 21 discussion is “These Truths,” a revisit to American history from historian Jill Lapore, that comes at a good time to be reminding ourselves of our country’s past.

Genealogy at Gibbs

Back by popular demand is family historian Cheryl Swift, who will conduct a genealogy how-to session tomorrow, Friday, Feb. 22, at 10 a.m. in the Bryant Room. This event is free and everyone is welcome. Many thanks to Washington Historical Society for arranging it.

Tour of EcoMaine

It was a fantastic trip! Washington’s two Tri-County Solid Waste Management Organization board members, Norman Casas and Charlotte Henderson, attended EcoMaine’s educational tour Feb. 7. Tri-County’s Somerville’s rep, Elaine Porter, and Appleton’s Peter Beckett also attended. EcoMaine in Portland is a primary processor of waste transferred out of our Union facility. Manager Matt Grondin and educator Katrina Venhuizen gave presentations about how the facility works, explained the sorting process and described how sensitive recycling operations are. The complexity of it is truly mind-boggling. There are many unique materials that can’t be combined with any other, which makes separating a very precise operation in order for recycling to work.

EcoMaine – like TCSWMO – is a nonprofit and has to make the process pay for itself by selling or exchanging its products. This is a huge challenge, especially since several Asian countries no longer accept certain common plastics. Mountains of trash and bundles of colored plastics bigger than my Honda are a sight to see, for sure. A couple of easy take-aways from this information-packed tour are these: don’t try to fudge in a few little items that don’t belong in the batch. Those misfits turn that batch into trash rather than a recyclable. Secondly, if in doubt about what to do with some material, check it out at ecomaine.com/recyclopedia.

Ninety years young

Henry Walter Sainio’s 90th birthday party will take place at Gibbs Library Saturday, March 2, between 2 and 3:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to stop by, wish him well and have some birthday cake. Henry’s parents, Svante and Alina Sainio, came from Finland to Washington Heights (New York City), where Henry was born March 1, 1929. Like many immigrants, Svante and Alina saved to buy a place in the country, and with Henry and his siblings, Helen, twins Lily and Alina, and brother Sulo, they moved to Calderwood Road in Washington July 3, 1932.

Henry’s father and sister, Lily, died of tuberculosis in 1937. Older siblings took over the farm and Henry went with his mother to Rhode Island and later Cape Cod, where she found work. In the summer, Alina worked at Stetson’s Camp in Jefferson, where Henry was a popular busboy. He attended Hodge School (where he first saw a girl named Dorothy). Later he joined the Army.and was stationed at Fort Ruckers, Ala., where he was a cook and military policeman.

Back home, he became reacquainted with Dorothy Anna Ripley at an Evening Star Grange dance. On Jan. 28, 1951, Henry and Dorothy were married. Henry ran the family hen farm and did carpentry. After he joined the carpenters’ union, he worked his way to superintendent for H.P. Cummings Construction Co., building hospitals, banks and schools throughout New England. Henry and Dorothy have one child, Dorothy Susan Sainio Edwards, and two grandchildren, Hilary Clark and Gregory Edwards.

Across the years, Henry has served as a firefighter and chief of the Washington Fire Department, 4-H leader, and, at one time or another, as member of nearly every town committee. He has spent countless hours renovating and restoring Evening Star Grange Hall and Washington Village Church. He has always stepped up when there was a need. For a time he even went to South Liberty Baptist Church on Saturdays to start the fires so it would be warm for Sunday services. Henry, together with his wife, Dorothy, received the 2017 Spirit of America Award for outstanding volunteer service to the community.

Henry enjoys baseball and is often seen at community events. He still gardens, although on a scaled-down level. Henry is a savvy conversationalist with a razor-sharp wit and self-effacing manner. Drop in on Saturday, March 2 to say hello and add your good wishes on Henry’s 90th birthday. Note; There will be a basket for birthday cards. If you wish, in lieu of a birthday gift, a donation to Gibbs Library would be very gratefully accepted. See you there!

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