Meg Haskell

Senior writer

I am second-career journalist with an idealistic commitment to the power of the Fourth Estate. I have a professional background in health care and 60-plus years of life experience that inform my work. I’ll be writing about a variety of issues for the Bangor Daily News, both in this blog and as a reporter, with a focus on matters of interest to readers in the “sweet spot” of their maturity: those productive adult years from 50 to 70 when (maybe) we have the time to pursue our personal interests, the energy to contribute to our communities and the wisdom to steer clear of needless drama.
Bangor City Council Chairman Sean Faircloth discusses efforts underway to establish Bangor as one of the "most livable" cities in the U.S. during his introduction of House Speaker Mark Eves during the Bangor stop of the speaker's statewide senior listening tour.

Maine House speaker tells seniors to ‘keep heat on’ issues that affect them

By Meg Haskell on Sept. 09, 2016, at 1:13 p.m.
Audience members, who came from Bangor and surrounding towns, offered questions and comments, confirming the need for more affordable housing options, caregiver support and transportation services but also raised other issues.
Amateur naturalist Dana Wilde recently talks about writing about the vast universe, from the stars in the sky to the spiders in his yard, from the perspective of his home in Troy.

This Maine writer shares his backyard universe

By Meg Haskell on Sept. 09, 2016, at 10:21 a.m.
Dana Wilde, 63, has been observing and documenting the world around him, intimately and affectionately, for years.

Losing a country cat

on Sept. 08, 2016, at 2:02 p.m.
Esther Rauch, longtime advocate for education and the arts, will be honored at the opening night gala of the Collins Center for the Arts for her work in promoting opera.

Maine educator to be honored for promoting opera and the arts

By Meg Haskell on Sept. 07, 2016, at 12:04 p.m.
“People have always loved opera without realizing it was opera,” Esther Rauch said. Now, if they would just come to the Collins Opera Outreach Committee’s talks, she said, they’ll discover a new level of enjoyment.
Meg Haskell

When the ‘think system’ fails, it’s time to get real about fitness

By Meg Haskell on Sept. 02, 2016, at 12:35 p.m.
Meg Haskell: “A positive attitude is a good starting point, the think system doesn’t actually work. So, this week I cut my losses and invested in a more substantive approach.”
Meg Callaway (center), coordinator of the Piscataquis Thriving in Place Collaborative Project, helps 85-year-old Dolores Buzzell (right) of Milo navigate the construction site of a new adult day services program while Dr. Lesley Fernow, longtime area geriatrician and president of the Maine Highlands Senior Center, looks on on Aug. 25 in Dover-Foxcroft.

How history buffs, old-age advocates are collaborating to support aging Mainers

By Meg Haskell on Sept. 02, 2016, at 6:18 a.m.
“There is a tremendous need in this area for adult day services and senior services.”

When the ‘think system’ fails, it’s time to get real about fitness

on Sept. 01, 2016, at 11:42 a.m.
Raised garden beds filled with various plants can be seen on Aug. 25 at the Brewer Housing Authority.

Garden research project yields veggies, satisfaction for Maine seniors

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 31, 2016, at 6:25 a.m.
“This project has brought them together in a shared activity, and they’ve made friends with each other.”
One of three energy-efficient homes can be seen on Aug. 18 on Fern Street in Bangor. Bob and Suzanne Kelly, building renovators, are developing a "green pocket neighborhood" on the site of an old dry-cleaning facility.

In Bangor, a ‘green pocket neighborhood’ adapts new ideas to traditional setting

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 26, 2016, at 6:23 a.m.
This is Bangor EcoHomes, a small but ambitious sustainable-living project developed by husband-and-wife team Bob and Suzanne Kelly.

After a plague of hornworms, the benediction of a tomato sandwich

on Aug. 24, 2016, at 9:43 p.m.
Brewer medium Jeannie Hopkins reads energy and spirits during a recent demonstration at the Filibuster Lounge at the Best Western White House Inn in Bangor.

Maine medium provides comfort to the grieving

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 24, 2016, at 11:17 a.m.
“People feel different when they leave. They feel better,” medium Jeannie Hopkins of Brewer said.
Qian Xue, a professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Maine, explains her research into developing a simple blood-testing device for home-bound Mainers at a recent UMaine forum on aging-related research.

UMaine showcases projects under development to help Mainers age in place

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 23, 2016, at 1 a.m.
From a simple well-water purification device to a comfortable, high-tech protector that decreases the likelihood of a hip fracture in a fall, researchers at the University of Maine are all about aging these days.

From Day 59, you can see the end of summer

on Aug. 18, 2016, at 10:03 a.m.
One of the quilts that Hampden artist Sally Field, 75, made is seen on Aug. 11 at the Boyd Place in Bangor. Field is one of several area quilters whose work is on exhibit at Boyd Place.

Stitch by stitch, Maine quilters bring new life to an old tradition

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 18, 2016, at 6:11 a.m.
“There are a lot of quilters in Maine. Most of us have quite a collection at home,” Callie Lavoie said. “We try to pass them off on all our family members.”
Bangor Daily News features writer Meg Haskell says her part to WABI TV5's Doug Finck (center) while Rodney Devost films at Sea Dog Brewing Co. in Bangor on Thursday. CBS held a competition that's part of a larger nationwide competition to win a walk on role on either "The Bold and the Beautiful" or "The Young and the Restless."

Break a leg: Auditioning for ‘The Young and the Restless’

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 13, 2016, at 8:21 a.m.
My participation was a longshot. Although I’ve enjoyed some opportunities to perform at the community theater level, I’m not what anyone would call an accomplished actor. The camera does not love me, Baby. Also, I am not and have never been a fan of the daytime dramas, as the soaps are now called.

My rash planting triggered this garden explosion

on Aug. 11, 2016, at 10:21 a.m.
A golfer watches her ball after taking a swing at Traditions Golf Club in Holden on Tuesday morning.  The club hosts a women's league there weekly, and while there are a number of longtime golfers there are lots of newcomers as well.  “"This is not a league of terribly competitive players,”" said golf pro and club co-owner Colin Gillies. “"We try to make it as comfortable and nonthreatening as possible by making up compatible teams with a mix of skill levels.”"

Women’s golf league bringing fun to the fore for retired ladies

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 11, 2016, at 8:19 a.m.
“We try to be fun and easy and accommodate all levels of ability.”
Kathy James, 65, shows off the three-story building on Main Street in Bucksport that she recently purchased Tuesday. James is renovating the space for an arts center -- gallery, studios, classes, supply and gift store. She is retired, widowed, caring for her 90-year-old mother and pursuing her dream to share and create art.

One woman’s faith, artistic vision are breathing new life into downtown Bucksport

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 04, 2016, at 2:12 p.m.
Bucksport is struggling to reinvent itself. And as it does, 65-year-old seasonal resident Kathy James has seized the opportunity to realize a life’s dream.

Can we talk? Here’s why this Baby Boomer loves her job

on Aug. 04, 2016, at 1:22 p.m.
Suzie Hockmeyer (center) smiles while listening to one of the guides go over the white water rafting trip down the Kennebec River in The Forks on Tuesday. Hockmeyer and her former husband, Wayne Hockmeyer, are widely regarded as the founders of whitewater rafting in Maine. Now in her mid-60s, Suzie is still a registered whitewater guide, taking groups on adventures from Northern Outdoors in The Forks.

First woman licensed as whitewater rafting guide has led groups down Maine’s wildest rivers for 40 years

By Meg Haskell on Aug. 04, 2016, at 12:28 p.m.
Clearly at ease and in her element as the group set out, Suzie Hockmeyer, 65, strapped on her yellow helmet and green life preserver, grasped her plastic paddle and helped hoist the heavy rubber raft down the long stairway to the foot of the Harris Station dam.