Abigail Curtis

Belfast Bureau

Officer Jim Bergdoll patrols the city while riding a new electric bicycle, which officials say expands the efficiency and range of bike officers.

Belfast police glide around town on patrol with new electric bike

By Abigail Curtis on July 30, 2014, at 7:33 a.m.
BELFAST, Maine — On a recent summer evening, the peace of the new Belfast Harbor Walk was shattered when an intoxicated woman began screaming and getting confrontational with people passing by. Someone called a complaint to the Belfast Police Department, and the nearest officer was dispatched to the scene. He …
Fire officials and Goose River Grocery owners Kyle and Helen Skinner waited Wednesday morning for an investigator from the Maine fire marshal's office to arrive. The store was gutted Tuesday night in a fire that may have started in the kitchen, according to the Belfast Fire Department.

Owners of grocery store gutted by fire plan parking lot barbecue

By Abigail Curtis on July 30, 2014, at 7:05 a.m.
BELFAST, Maine — Two weeks after a fire gutted the Goose River Grocery on Swan Lake Avenue the owners said they will not be budged from their plan of holding a barbecue over the next two weekends. Kyle and Helen Skinner will sell pulled pork sandwiches and chicken from the …
Students from Haining No. 1 Middle School in Zheyiang, China, are spending a few days in midcoast Maine. School officials hope it is the beginning of a long relationship between the two schools.

Chinese students visit Searsport schools, officials hope it marks beginning of a lasting educational exchange

By Abigail Curtis on July 28, 2014, at 3:59 p.m.
SEARSPORT, Maine — The hallways of Searsport District High School normally would be sleepy and dark on a summertime weekend, but on Saturday the gymnasium was alive with the sounds of laughter and shouts — in Chinese. Last week, 28 middle school students from a province near the city of …
In 1914, islanders celebrated the 300th anniversary of Capt. John Smith's arrival on Monhegan Island.

Whales, furs, fish and history: Monhegan marks Capt. John Smith’s 1614 settlement

By Abigail Curtis on July 28, 2014, at 1:11 p.m.
MONHEGAN ISLAND, Maine — In the spring of 1614, Capt. John Smith sailed up the coast of Massachusetts and Maine, dubbing the region of beaches, pine trees and rocky cliffs New England. When his two ships found Monhegan Island, located about 10 miles from the mainland, Smith decided to stop …
Friends check out an exhibit Saturday afternoon at the Penobscot Marine Museum in Searsport, one of the stops on the newly-redesigned Downeast Fisheries Trail.

Fisheries trail to encourage tourism, showcase Down East Maine’s maritime heritage

By Abigail Curtis on July 27, 2014, at 1:40 p.m.
SEARSPORT, Maine — Locavores who live in or visit the Pine Tree State can meander along the Maine Beer Trail, sipping their way from one microbrewery to the next. They could eat their way from lobster roll to lobster roll along the coast or farm hop to see where their …
Rep. Mark Dion, D-Portland

Should the state do more to prevent the spread of disease such as Hepatitis C in prison? A Bangor woman thinks the answer is yes

By Abigail Curtis on July 26, 2014, at 3:03 p.m.
BANGOR, Maine — Sheila Ford of Bangor is an administrative assistant who recently has found herself on an unlikely mission: to educate Mainers about the risks of communicable diseases in prison, and hopefully to get them to care about the dangers to prisoners. That’s because her friend, a man serving …
Christopher King

Searsport man charged after allegedly kicking in door, assaulting estranged wife

By Abigail Curtis on July 24, 2014, at 6:02 p.m.
MONTVILLE, Maine — A Searsport man was arrested this week after allegedly kicking the door in at a North Trotting Road residence and assaulting people inside, including his estranged wife. Christopher Michael King, 26, barged into the home on Sunday, July 20, Lt. Jason Trundy of the Waldo County Sheriff’s …

MOFGA receives $1 million gift to help train more new farmers

By Abigail Curtis on July 23, 2014, at 3:02 p.m.
UNITY, Maine — A farming organization with a strong grassroots history announced Wednesday that it received a gift of $1 million to help support and train new farmers, the largest financial donation in its history. Officials from the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association said that they were thrilled with …
Rose Rapp, the owner of Farmetta Farm in Morrill, takes Cornish cross chicks from the brooder to an outside chicken tractor Tuesday.

Percentage of women running farms in Maine more than double national average

By Abigail Curtis on July 23, 2014, at 1:06 p.m.
MORRILL, Maine — Farmer Rose Rapp lunged left and sheep shearer Edie Kershner dove to the right Tuesday afternoon, as the two worked together to pull a single animal out of the panicked, woolly stampede of sheep penned up in a rickety Waldo County barn. The women managed to grab …
Luke Bryant

Maine high court upholds the manslaughter conviction of Waldo County man

By Abigail Curtis on July 22, 2014, at 8:14 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — A Waldo County man convicted in 2012 of manslaughter for the shooting death of his friend was not successful in his effort to appeal the judgment against him, according to a decision handed down Tuesday by the Maine Supreme Judicial Court. Luke Bryant, 22, was sentenced to …
Cassandra Lucas

Woman sentenced to 5 days for disturbing neighbors while partially naked

By Abigail Curtis on July 21, 2014, at 5:43 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — A woman accused of disturbing her neighbors while partially naked last month has been sentenced to serve five days at the Waldo County Jail. Cassandra Lucas, 22, pleaded guilty last week at Belfast District Court to disorderly conduct and refusing to submit to arrest. According to the police …
Todd M. Gilday is escorted into the Waldo County Superior Courthouse during his first appearance at court.

Belfast man pleads guilty to August 2013 slaying of Belfast woman

By Abigail Curtis on July 21, 2014, at 2:53 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — The former tax examiner accused of killing a well-loved Belfast woman last summer pleaded guilty to murder Monday morning and will spend 50 years in prison, according to a deal worked out with state prosecutors and his defense attorney. Todd Gilday, 44, will be sentenced on Aug. …

Maine prisoner on monthlong hunger strike to protest living conditions

By Abigail Curtis on July 18, 2014, at 5:22 p.m.
WARREN, Maine — A Maine State Prison inmate has been on a hunger strike for one month while protesting his living conditions there, according to prisoner advocates. Nadim Haque, in his mid-40s, was described Friday as a “model prisoner” by Judy Garvey of the Maine Prisoner Advocacy Coalition. But the …
Todd Gilday

Belfast murder suspect expected to plead guilty for homicide last summer

By Abigail Curtis on July 18, 2014, at 4:02 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — The man accused of killing a well-loved Belfast woman last summer is expected to plead guilty to the crime on Monday morning, according to Maine Deputy Attorney General William Stokes. Todd Gilday, 44, had been scheduled to go on trial in August for the slaying of Lynn …

Withdrawal negotiations for Belfast-area school district raise more questions

By Abigail Curtis on July 18, 2014, at 3:15 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — All eight member communities are trying to withdraw from Regional School Unit 20, and six of them got a lot closer to that goal this week. The regional school district’s board members voted in a special meeting Thursday night to approve the withdrawal plans for six of …
Sandra Negrete (center) owns 101 Miles of Maine with her daughter Heather Bowers (right) and son Andrew McCue.

Maine store only sells items produced within 101-mile radius

By Abigail Curtis on July 18, 2014, at 2:04 p.m.
WINTERPORT, Maine — Sandy Negrete of Old Town had always wanted to open her own store, but she wasn’t quite sure what to sell in it. Then the laboratory technician read a book called the “100-Mile Diet” in a science class and had a brainstorm. The book is about the …
Bob McCormick of Blue Hill performs a reel dance to the Celtic fusion music of the Sprag Session during the 2012 Maine Celtic Celebration in Belfast.

Maine Celtic Celebration brings music, Highland Games, cheese roll, community pride to Belfast

By Abigail Curtis on July 17, 2014, at 3:37 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — When Chris Brinn, music coordinator of the Maine Celtic Celebration, was asked about his favorite memory from last year’s outdoor music festival on the waterfront in Belfast, what came to mind wasn’t the toe-tapping music or the raucous New World Cheese Roll Championship. Instead, it’s what happened …
Fire officials and Goose River Grocery owners Kyle and Helen Skinner waited Wednesday morning for an investigator from the Maine fire marshal's office to arrive. The store was gutted Tuesday night in a fire that may have started in the kitchen, according to the Belfast Fire Department.

Belfast grocery store gutted in Tuesday night fire

By Abigail Curtis on July 16, 2014, at 1:58 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — Just months after new owners Kyle and Helen Skinner purchased the Goose River Grocery on Swan Lake Avenue, a fire Tuesday night ripped through their building and gutted it. On Wednesday morning, the couple waited in the parking lot outside the store for an investigator from the …
Charles Reed Black, a retired schoolteacher from Kansas, listens to opening arguments Tuesday at Knox County Superior Court in his trial for the attempted murder of his wife, Lisa Black.

Trial begins for man accused of pushing wife off cliff in Camden

By Abigail Curtis on July 15, 2014, at 5:34 p.m.
ROCKLAND, Maine — Jurors on Tuesday afternoon heard two dramatic — and dramatically different — versions of the events of April 7, 2011, during opening arguments at Knox County Superior Court in the attempted murder trial of Charles Black. Black, 71, is charged with attempted murder, two counts of elevated …
Lisa Kushner (left) and Martha Piscuskas, the co-director of Waterfall Arts, talk about "The Belly Project," part of the summer's "Living in These Bodies Part 1" art exhibit.

‘The Belly Project’ still powerful, relevant after two decades

By Abigail Curtis on July 06, 2014, at 6:27 p.m.
BELFAST, Maine — More than two decades ago, on a hot summer night in the upstairs of an old farmhouse after an exhausting day at the beach with small children, Lisa Kushner couldn’t sleep and turned on the news. When she saw footage of abortion protesters holding up posters showing …
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