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Hope elephants
  • Published
    October 24, 2012

    Meet Hope's newest residents

    Asian elephants Rosie and Opal were munching on hay and enjoying a drink of well water after spending the morning grazing in their 1-acre outdoor paddock on Hatchet Mountain Road Oct. 24. The elephants, who are 43- and 41-years-old respectively, arrived at Hope Elephants Oct. 20, after a year-and-a-half of planning by veterinarian Dr. Jim Laurita, his brother Tom Laurita and several other volunteers involved with ...

  • Published
    October 21, 2012

    Elephants arrive home in Hope

    Asian elephants Rosie and Opal arrived safely Oct. 20 at Hope Elephants in Hope. Rosie and Opal, retired circus elephants with joint and muscle ailments, are the first residents of the Hope Elephants facility, which was created by Dr. Jim Laurita, a Cornell educated veterinarian, and Tom Laurita, his brother. “I am so pleased to see Rosie and Opal settling into their new home at our Hope Elephants facility,” said ...

  • Published
    August 30, 2012

    Hope firefighters become familiar with elephant facility

    With the impending arrival of two Asian elephants to live out their retirement in Hope, the town's fire department recently took a tour of the facility to become familiar with the facility's floor plan. Monday, Aug. 20, 14 Hope firefighters toured the Hatchet Mountain Road facility to learn the layout of the barn and where things are, such as the mechanical room, since that's the most probable area for a fire, ...

  • Published
    December 28, 2011

    Building a home in Hope for Rosie

    Hope Elephants opened its doors Dec. 27 for a sneak peek at the elephant rehabilitation facility being built on Hatchet Mountain Road. More than 100 people made their way through the building. In July, veterinarian Jim Laurita and his brother Tom Laurita, founders of Hope Elephants, received approval from the town to build a 3,120-square-foot barn that will house a 42-year-old Asian elephant named Rosie and ...

  • Published
    August 3, 2011

    Hope Elephants breaks ground

    Hope residents and folks involved with the Hope Elephants project gathered Aug. 2 at Jim Laurita's house on Hatchet Mountain Road for a ground-breaking ceremony and toast. Site work is expected to get under way this week by Maine Coast Construction to begin building the barn to house Rosie, a 42-year-old Asian elephant. Veterinarian Jim Laurita and his brother Tom Laurita have formed Hope Elephants, a ...

  • Published
    July 27, 2011

    Laurita hopes to foster local passion for elephants, habitat conservation

    Veterinarian Jim Laurita's passion for elephants began when he worked on and off for the Carson and Barnes Circus during his college years in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Laurita, who has worked at the Camden Hospital for Animals since 1990, wants to further his passion for elephants and elephant conservation by building a facility at his Hope home to rehabilitate an injured elephant from that same circus he ...

  • Published
    July 22, 2011

    Fire chief OKs Hope Elephants project

    Hope Fire Chief Clarence Keller has met twice with Jim Laurita to discuss his plans to build a facility to house and rehabilitate a retired circus elephant at his Hatchet Mountain Road home and the chief indicated the project will not cause an undue burden on town services. On July 5, the Hope Planning Board gave conditional approval for Hope Elephants. Laurita, a local veterinarian, and his brother Tom Laurita ...

  • Published
    July 6, 2011

    Hope Elephants project gets conditional approval

    The Hope Planning Board gave conditional approval to veterinarian Jim Laurita's plan to build a facility to house and rehabilitate a retired circus elephant at its July 5 meeting. Laurita must go before the board for a final appearance after he meets with Fire Chief Clarence Keller and Knox County Emergency Management Agency officials to ensure the project is not an "undue burden" on town services, which is an ...

  • Published
    June 23, 2011

    Hope Elephants jumps first hurdle

    The Hope Planning Board unanimously voted June 21 that the application submitted by veterinarian Jim Laurita to build a barn to house a retired circus elephant is complete. The project will now go to a public hearing next month to give people a chance to speak for or against the plan. That meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 5 at 7 p.m. at the Hope Town Office. Between 10 and 15 people attended the ...

  • Published
    June 16, 2011

    Hope Planning Board to continue elephant project review

    The Hope Planning Board will begin a site plan review for the Hope Elephants project at its next meeting. The meeting is Tuesday, June 21 at 7 p.m. at the Hope Town Office. Jim Laurita, a veterinarian at Camden Hospital for Animals, has submitted an application to build a 3,120-square-foot metal building with cedar shingle siding at his home at 43 Hatchet Mountain Road, across from Hatchet Mountain Publick ...

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