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Midcoast community news, Sept. 1

Master Gardener Volunteer program

The Master Gardener Volunteer program provides participants with more than 40 hours of in-depth training in the art and science of horticulture. In addition, volunteers are trained to conduct and join sustainable horticulture projects in their communities.

The program will focus on growing fruits and vegetables. Trainees will receive the latest research-based information from University of Maine Extension educators and industry experts. Thirteen classes, held 12:30-3:30 p.m. beginning Thursday, Oct. 6, and will be held in Belfast, Waldo and Waldoboro.

In the spring of 2012, participants must attend two of three tours and workshops at other sites. To complete the course, participants must volunteer a minimum of 40 hours at approved community projects in their first year. There are many ways to volunteer, including demonstration gardens, school programs, Maine Harvest for Hunger campaigns, writing articles, giving public talks and more.

Applications are due Friday, Sept. 16. The program costs between $110 to $330 based on a sliding income scale. Interested participants may get an application by contacting the Knox-Lincoln office at 832-0343 or 800-244-2104, or


Harvest of the Arts

The Appleton Historical Society will present the annual Harvest of the Arts, a program of presentations by Appleton musicians and writers, at 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11, Appleton Meeting House, Sennebec Road. Visual artist’s work will be displayed outside. After the indoor program, refreshments will be provided outside. The event is free.

The mission of the Appleton Historical Society since its organization in 1970 has been the preservation of the meetinghouse as well as the collection of historical facts and artifacts. The society now has a room at the new Appleton Library which provides a safer atmosphere for the materials and a comfortable site for research.

The historical society is offering tickets for a 50-50 raffle to help with fundraising. Tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. The drawing will take place at at the society’s regular meeting 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 12, at the meetinghouse. The program will be given by high school students Molly Kelly and Claire Horne, who will talk about their trip to Rome last spring. The program is free and open to all.


Successful fundraiser for Habitat

Habitat for Humanity of Waldo County held a Habitat Lobster Gala on Aug. 21 on Steamboat Landing in Belfast. Along with a lobster or steak dinner, attendees were treated to blues music by The Juke Rockets. The event raised more than $2,300 toward construction of a second home, be located in Searsport, in Waldo County.


Rockport Garden Club

The Rockport Garden Club will host Tony Sohns at its next meeting 2:30-3:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 4, in the lower level of the Rockport Opera House, 6 Central St. Sohns has an enthusiasm for anything that creeps, crawls, slithers, hops or flies. Join him and club members as he explains how the birds and the bees pollinate and help to make our planet a better place to call home. This will be an engaging and instructive science program for a mature audience. The program is not suitable for children.

The program is free and open to the public. For more information, call Patti peace at 594-1919.

Bach at Beech Nut

Coastal Mountains Land Trust invites the public to a special open house featuring violinist Heidi Karod 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, at Beech Hill. Land Trust volunteers will open Beech Nut, the historic stone house at the summit, and provide guests with information about the history and management of the preserve and the hut.

Special guest Heidi Karod will provide visitors with unaccompanied Bach sonatas and traditional New England fiddle music 11a.m.-1 p.m. She has played violin since she was 5 years old and was formerly a member of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra. The event is the last of a series of special activities held at Beech Nut this year in honor of the land trust’s 25th anniversary. Open houses continue twice each month through October. Visit the Events Calendar at for dates and times.

For more information on the land trust, visit the website or call 236-7091.


The Searsport and North Searsport United Methodist churches invite the community for a special worship service on Sunday, Sept. 4. Instead of separate worship services on Labor Day weekend, the two churches will combine for a Labor Day Hymn Sing at 10 a.m. at the North Searsport United Methodist Church. Worship will be outdoors, weather permitting, and participants will work together to construct a “musical sermon” about the work they are called to do.

The North Searsport United Methodist Church in located at the intersection of Mount Ephraim Road and Loop Road, seven miles from downtown Searsport, and near the North Searsport Fire Station. For more information, call the church office at 548-2239.


Talk by maritime historian

Thomaston Historical Society’s Sept. 13 program will feature Capt. Jim Sharp, author, maritime historian and owner of Rockland’s Sail, Power & Steam Museum, who will discuss the creation of his book, “With Reckless Abandon,” along with stories of the museum. The meeting will be held at the Knox Farmhouse, 80 Knox St., and it is free and open to the public.

A former charter captain, windjammer business owner, and owner and rehabilitator of more than 30 vessels,including schooners, tugboats, freight boats, and “just about anything that would float,” Sharp has carved out a long and fascinating maritime career punctuated by cruises throughout the world. “With Reckless Abandon” (republished in 2011 by Down East Books) is a chronicle of his many adventures.

The session will begin with refreshments at 7 p.m., followed by a brief business meeting at 7:30 p.m., and Sharp’s presentation at 7:40 p.m.


Trotting parks presentation

Stephen Thompson of Hallowell will give an illustrated presentation on “Maine’s Lost Trotting Parks” at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 7, at the Union Historical Society’s Old Town House on Town House Road.

In the period of 1820 to 1892, and especially after the Civil War, the trotting-horse industry flourished, and at one time there may have been 115 Maine towns with trotting parks. Union Fairground’s trotting track is one of the few which remain. In his presentation, Thompson will discuss his research on the age of “When the Horse was King” and give an overview of “Maine’s Lost Trotting Parks,” as well as the life and times of C.H. Nelson and his champion trotting stallion, Nelson, beginning in the small town of Palermo and ending at Togus.

After the meeting, refreshments will be served by hostesses Debbie Hilt and Phyllis Parsons. Meetings of Union Historical Society are free and open to the public. Union Historical Society owns and maintains the Robbins House on Union Common, the Cobb’s Ledge historic site on Town House Road, and the Old Town House, also located on Town House Road and available to rent for functions. Membership is $5 per year. For more information, call 785-5444 and leave a message, or visit>


Music group

Trish Jonason, board-certified music therapist, will offer a free demonstration Songbirds class, a parent-child music group for young children up to age 5, at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, at The Playroom, Route 90, in Warren. Songbirds will run through the fall and winter Thursday mornings. Call 691-7900 or visit for more information.


Mollie’s kitchen

Historic New England will present a special program, “Mollie Tucker’s Kitchen,” at 10 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 1, at Castle Tucker. Confirmed reservations are required. Space is limited. Call 882-7169 or visit to make a reservation. Admission is $10 members of Historic New England, $15 others.

From 1858 when she moved in as a young bride of 16 until her death in 1922, Mollie Tucker, the wife of Capt. Richard Tucker Jr., prepared food in the kitchen at Castle Tucker for her family of eight, visiting friends and family, and in the summer season, paying guests. Letters from her children regularly refer to family favorites and holiday specialties. Later, Mollie relied on her cooking to help bring in extra income to help pay bills. What kinds of food did they eat for regular meals? What did they eat for celebrations? How was the food prepared and served? This program tells her story in the rooms where she worked. Visitors will get a real insider’s look at the way a 19th century family kitchen functioned.

Historic New England’s Castle Tucker and the Nickels-Sortwell House in Wiscasset are both open through Oct. 15. Regular tour hours for Castle Tucker are 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Hours for the Nickels-Sortwell House 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

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