Articles by Robert F. Bukaty

Pre-K teacher Crystal Folsom gets a hug from first-graders on the last day of school in Monticello.

Due to shrinking funding, Monticello’s Wellington School’s out forever

By Robert F. Bukaty on June 30, 2014, at 12:04 p.m.
MONTICELLO, Maine — Across the state, school is now out for summer. At the Wellington School, school is out forever. With shrinking funding from the state and taxpayers unwilling or unable to make up the difference, the Regional School Unit 29 board decided in April that it would be best …
Gina Snow gets a big kiss from Dory, one of her Jack Russell terriers, after completing the 5K Canicross race.

Hot dog! Dogs, owners participated in the 5K Canicross Race in New Gloucester

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 26, 2014, at 5:27 p.m.
NEW GLOUCESTER, Maine – The canine athletes came in all shapes and sizes. There were big ones and little ones. Some had very long hair and others had very short legs. Some were built for speed and others, well, made you wonder if they could cover the entire 5-kilometer course …
Charles Norman Shay views the murals painted on the interior walls of his teepee on Indian Island. He is depicted as a young boy at lower left.

Princess Watahwaso’s Teepee, a longtime Indian Island landmark

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 23, 2014, at 5:51 a.m.
INDIAN ISLAND, Maine — You can’t help but notice the large red and white wooden teepee just after you cross the bridge over the Penobscot River onto Indian Island. It’s been a landmark since 1947. But by 1988, when Charles Norman Shay acquired the property which includes the house he …
Former roller derby stars Amy Martin (front) and Donna Hickey skate on Baxter Boulevard on Sunday, May 11, 2014, in Portland, Maine.

Baxter Boulevard — An ‘urban oasis’ in Portland

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 20, 2014, at 6:59 a.m.
PORTLAND, Maine – The gravel path that circles scenic Baxter Boulevard has long been a great place to stroll or jog. When a major construction project last year shut down a section of the boulevard to automobiles, folks discovered the extra space on the car-free paved road was an even …
An Amherst player lays out but can't get reach a pass during an Ultimate game against Fryeburg Academy on Saturday in South Portland.

High school teams battle for Ultimate frisbee victory in South Portland

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 13, 2014, at 5:50 a.m.
SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine — Teams from 19 high schools from as far away as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, traveled to the Wainwright Recreation Complex last weekend for High School Northeastern Championships of the sport called Ultimate. The beautifully simple game — all you need to play is a flying disc and an …
Rev. Frank J. Murray, pastor of All Saints parish, blesses commercial fishing boats at Boothbay Harbor on Sunday.

Remembering those lost at Fishermen’s Memorial

By Robert F. Bukaty on April 28, 2014, at 3:34 p.m.
BOOTHBAY HARBOR, Maine — As the bell tolled at Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church, more than 200 local fishermen who perished at sea were remembered at the annual Fishermen’s Memorial service on Sunday. About 75 people gathered at the memorial park overlooking the harbor. Local clergy, standing next …
A competitor skims across a man-made pond during the 30th annual Slush Cup on Saturday, at Shawnee Peak in Bridgton.

Defying gravity: Skiers, snowboarders skim the water for victory at Shawnee Peak

By Robert F. Bukaty on March 25, 2014, at 5:50 a.m.
BRIDGTON, Maine – While the snow conditions on the slopes of Shawnee Peak were about as good as they get on Saturday, it was the attempt to skim across a 100-foot-long man-made pond that was the highlight. About 75 skiers and snowboarders competed, but only a small percentage of the …
Balancing rocks appear to watch the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean earlier this month at Acadia National Park in Maine.

Acadia’s balancing rocks

By Robert F. Bukaty on March 21, 2014, at 7:37 a.m.
ACADIA NATIONAL PARK, Maine — Like a group of yogis who have found the ideal place to meditate, more than two dozen carefully balanced rocks populate a quiet cove just north of Otter Cliffs. They appear to have emerged from the round rock beach to take their place amongst the …
City Hall is seen at dusk, Monday, Nov. 18, 2013, in Portland, Maine.

November light illuminates beauty in Portland

By Robert F. Bukaty on Nov. 22, 2013, at 6:44 a.m.
PORTLAND, Maine — There’s something about the quality of light in November that is unlike any other time of the year. The sun, shining at a low angle to earth through the crisp, clear air, seems to spotlight anything in its path while casting everything else in dark shadows. Although …
Musicians wearing Rastafarian headwear appear to take notice of a pedestrian on Cedar Street outside the Lewiston Pawn Shop.

Pawn shop murals showcase Lewiston diversity

By Robert F. Bukaty on Oct. 21, 2013, at 8:54 a.m.
LEWISTON, Maine — It started a few years ago with a painting of a dollar bill on the front and a mural featuring reggae musicians on the side. As the business expanded into adjacent buildings, so did murals. If you make a left turn from Lisbon Street onto Cedar Street, …
A pigeon joins its flock below a whale weather vane on top of the United Church of Christ in Freeport.

Maine’s vanes as fickle as its rains

By Robert Bukaty on Sept. 27, 2013, at 5:29 a.m.
UNION, Maine — At his age, Malcolm Wadsworth wants nothing to do with climbing on his roof. But that hasn’t prevented the 82-year-old from displaying his latest weather vane, a rifle he made from wood and modeled after his favorite Winchester. He simply pounded a pole in the ground next …
Kaitlyn Nafziger, 20, a junior at Unity College, checks on the condition of a feisty black guillemot chick on Eastern Egg Rock, Maine.

‘Bird nerds’ live on remote island to watch over Maine’s puffin population

By Robert F. Bukaty on July 18, 2013, at 6:10 a.m.
EASTERN EGG ROCK, Maine — Aspen Ellis suddenly springs from the dinner table, grabs her binoculars and bolts out of the cabin. A small flock of flying shorebirds has caught her eye. “Dowitchers!” she calls out. In a moment her three colleagues grab their own field glasses and rush to …
A chipping sparrow gathering nest building materials tugs on loose threads from strips of clothing hung on a garden pole in Freeport, Maine.

Freeport backyard a bird watcher’s paradise

By Robert F. Bukaty on July 12, 2013, at 5:34 a.m.
FREEPORT, Maine — It seems every time I go out into my backyard I come across another songbird nest. The first to move in were the robins, the subject of a Maine Frame photo essay a few weeks ago. They built a nest under the roof of my shed. Apparently …
Christy Gardner practices shooting a hockey puck in her driveway as her service dog, Moxie, looks on Thursday, June 13, 2013, in Lewiston, Maine.

Lewiston veteran earns USA Hockey’s Disabled Athlete of the Year award after doctors said she’d never play sports again

By Robert F. Bukaty on June 28, 2013, at 5:23 a.m.
LEWISTON, Maine — Army veteran Christy Gardner was recently named by USA Hockey as 2013 Disabled Athlete of the Year. Gardner, 31, plays for the U.S. Women’s Sled Hockey Team and also for the USA Warriors, a team made up of mostly male amputees. Gardner, 31, of Lewiston, suffered a …
Dan Seymour, of Standish, and his son, Daniel, 11, pose in traditional Indian dress at the Metis of Maine annual pow-wow, Saturday, June 8, 2013, in Dayton.

Mixed blood pow wow in Dayton celebrates native American heritage

By Robert F. Bukaty on June 18, 2013, at 6:11 a.m.
DAYTON, Maine — The Métis Eastern Tribal Indian Society of Maine gathered last weekend for their annual pow-wow on the society’s land in York County. The mixed-blood group, which formed in 2003, has roughly 400 members who have at least a trace of native American ancestry. The pow-wow was a …
Lester Noyes travels down Route 88 in his 1929 Model A Ford station wagon, commonly known as a Woody, Sunday, June 2, 2013, in Falmouth, Maine. Noyes is part of a group of antique car enthusiasts who assemble for outings most Sundays, leaving Skillins Nursery in Falmouth, at 8 a.m.

Sunday drive with antique car lovers and a Model T reunion

By Robert F. Bukaty on June 11, 2013, at 5:38 a.m.
FALMOUTH, Maine — Back in 1952, when Nathan Brackett was just a sophomore in high school, he bought a run-down 1920 Ford Model T. He paid $60. Then he set about restoring the automobile with his father. Most of the work was done to keep the car looking like its …
A robin prepares to feed its chicks in Freeport, Maine.

Making friends with the robins in my backyard

By Robert F. Bukaty on June 07, 2013, at 5:38 a.m.
FREEPORT, Maine — Each spring, robins were my grandfather’s constant companion. He would toss worms to them while working in his garden. The birds would pick up his offering and fly back to their nest above the neighbor’s porch.  He’d swear it was the same couple that was there the …
Veteran deckhand Jenny Baxter, 24, waits for the signal to start lowering a sailing on the schooner Mary Day, off the coast of Rockport, Maine.

Schooner Mary Day sports all-female crew

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 31, 2013, at 5:49 a.m.
ON PENOBSCOT BAY, Maine — Wendi Liebl always dreamed about living on a sailboat, but after two long days of hoisting sails and stacking heavy anchor chain in spats of foul weather, she admitted it could be tough. “I kept thinking, I wanted to work outside, closer to nature,” she …
Racers trudge through "Got Mud," one of more than 20 obstacles in the Into The Mud Challenge, Sunday, April 28, 2013, in Gorham, Maine.

Into The Mud Challenge good, dirty fun for racers

By Robert F. Bukaty on May 03, 2013, at 5:29 a.m.
GORHAM, Maine — Lots of people enter road races — and most even have a good time running on pavement — but if you really want to have fun racing, consider entering a mud race. More than 1,000 people did just that on Sunday, competing in the third annual Into …
Tony Ricciardi, of Yarmouth, Maine, dressed as a Yeti, skims successfully across the pond to win the annual pond skimming competition, Sunday, April 7, 2013, at the Sunday River Ski Resort in Newry, Maine.

Thrills, spills and chills at Sunday River

By Robert F. Bukaty on April 09, 2013, at 5:30 a.m.
NEWRY, Maine — The announcer joked that they had filled the pond with warm water, but the truth was that it was so cold on Sunday morning they had to clear a layer of ice before they could kick off the pond-skimming competition, an annual end-of-the-season crowd-pleaser at the Sunday …
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