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Washington news March 19

By Charlotte Henderson | Mar 18, 2020

By any other name . . .

Coronavirus disease, COVID-19, 2019-nCov, 2019 Novel Coronavirus – whatever name is used, these are the same disease. It’s a brand new disease whose virulence and duration aren’t known yet, but it’s taking the country and world by storm.

Do not poo-poo this virus or its potential.

Take reasonable precautions and watch for updates on reliable media sources like the Centers for Disease Control. I found some good practical points at

The important thing to remember is that there will be a lot of strange ideas floating around and people trying to tell us a magic way to stay well. Don’t fall for scams and hoaxes.

Pizza supper and program cancelled

Washington Historical Society and Prescott School Parent Teacher Group made the unhappy decision to cancel the Maine Bicentennial kick-off event scheduled for Friday, March 20 at the school.

It wasn’t an easy decision, but concern and common sense led school authorities to cancel to help keep Prescott families and our townspeople healthy and safe as Covid-19 bears down.

Washington Historical Society approves the decision and the two groups hope to reschedule the pizza supper, dessert auction and Maine Bicentennial Celebration at a later date in the school year.

Meet Select Board Candidates

A Meet the Candidates hour will be Wednesday, March 25, from 5:30 to 6:45 p.m. in the Bryant Room of Gibbs Library.

Select Board candidates Tom Johnston, the incumbent, and challenger ShaRon Kelly will be on hand to meet with voters. The Town Clerks and Select Board invite all voters to stop by, meet the candidates and enjoy refreshments.

Municipal Vote and Town Meeting

On Friday, March 27, Washington voters will elect a selectman and school board members. A marijuana opinion also will be on the ballot.

Voting is at the Bryant Room all day Friday, Saturday at 10 a.m. Town Meeting will open at Prescott Memorial School.


At the time of this writing the PANCAKE BREAKFAST at Blueberry Fields B&B on March 22 is still on.

It would be good to watch your email for Deb’s updates or check blueberryfieldsB& or call 446-2407 before you set out. The hours are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Two pancakes will be $4, and there are many other sweet goodies on sale including maple-cream scones which I haven’t tried but sound delicious.

2020 Spring Retreat

The Washington Recreation Committee is planning its annual Spring Retreat for Saturday, April 18, at Evening Star Grange. There are sessions with yoga, meditation, energy healing, reflexology, tai-chi and more.

The featured speaker is David Spahr, author of “Edible and Medicinal Mushrooms of New England and Eastern Canada.” David is a noted authority on mushrooms and edible fungi and a longtime wild food forager. He’ll talk about the benefits of wild foods and how to use them. Pre-registration for the Spring Retreat is required and closes March 31.

The cost for the day is $20 for Washington residents and $30 for non-residents.

Keep calm

Emails, texts, phone calls, and conversations (at safe distances, of course) abound in our lives in the last few days and we learn of travel plan changes, cancellations, school closing and many, many public events closed or changed.

A frequent sign-off of messages is something like “Keep calm. Wash your hands. Don’t touch your face.”

That last admonition is because one thing that is known about viruses is that they can remain alive and active on surfaces for several hours or more. The type of surface and the environment make the time vary a lot so some research on your own is needed.

But, when you touch a surface an infected person sneezed on, then touch your face – a place where there’s a lot of mucous membrane - bingo, that little germ just zooms right into that easy access.

Now, here’s the thing, some researchers observed hand to face contacts and found subjects touched their face 23 times per hour with nearly half the touches to mucous membrane areas.

The research wasn’t about corona virus, but just about the transmission of germs via “self inoculation,” suggesting the easiest and least expensive preventive method of disease transmission is, yup, you guessed it. Hand Washing.

Take care.

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