Maine Focus

Maine Focus is a journalism and community engagement initiative of the Bangor Daily News.

 

Special Performance Of Love Letters

By Julia Kirby on Jan. 13, 2017, at 12:27 p.m.
Josephine Jordan, 3, peers out from the doorway leading to her family's front hall after coming down from the upstairs to investigate the sound of visitors on Dec. 9, 2016.

Inside the isolation of the first refugee family to be resettled in small-town Maine

on Jan. 12, 2017, at 6:30 a.m.
We chronicled one child’s yearning to be understood.
MAINE FOCUS
A WIC recipient and her son sit for an appointment at Bangor Public Health & Community Services on Jan. 12.

Mary Mayhew insists on photo IDs for infant nutrition program and loses $1.4M

By Matthew Stone on Jan. 11, 2017, at 8:10 a.m.
The demand by Maine’s top health official has stalled an upgrade required by federal law to a program that helps new moms buy healthy food.
MAINE FOCUS
A hunter stands out among brown fall trees in Oxbow on Nov. 8, 2016.

Where Maine is losing its workers the fastest

By Adanya Lustig on Jan. 06, 2017, at 6:29 a.m.
Over the last 45 years, Maine had the greatest portion of people in their prime working years in 1999.
MAINE FOCUS
Daylight hits the Aroostook River in Oxbow Plantation, on Election Day, Nov. 8.

The Maine towns with the greatest percentage of empty homes

By Adanya Lustig on Jan. 05, 2017, at 6:25 a.m.
Maine lost population unevenly over the last 15 years. Some counties hollowed out, while others grew in population.
MAINE FOCUS
Writing over the door in a hallway of Piscataquis Community Secondary School, which serves the seventh through 12th-grade students of School Administrative District 4. The district's 2016-17 budget was narrowly approved by voters during the Nov. 8 election.

The poorest Maine school districts that pay the most

By Adanya Lustig on Jan. 04, 2017, at 7:16 a.m.
The cost that each local community pays each year varies in Maine from $2,000 per student to $25,000 per student.

Maine needs a central hub to attract more immigrants

on Dec. 20, 2016, at 10:41 a.m.
We wanted to learn how to grow Maine’s economy. Here’s what we found.
CONTRIBUTORS
Daylight hits the Aroostook River in Oxbow Plantation on Nov. 8.

One thing rural Maine has going for it is deep love

By Shane St. Cyr on Dec. 16, 2016, at 7:10 a.m.
It is my dream to come home to Maine.

Bangor Winter Farmers Market

By fireflymaine on Dec. 15, 2016, at 10:27 a.m.
MAINE FOCUS
While Maine's infant mortality rate climbed, the group tasked with understanding why did not meet or review deaths.

Infant deaths are rising, and the group charged with understanding why hasn’t met for 2 years

By Adanya Lustig on Dec. 13, 2016, at 6:53 a.m.
The state panel tasked with investigating Maine’s infant deaths has not sought detailed information about specific deaths for several months and appears to have ceased work altogether.

Eat at Five Guys and support local Penquis Transportation Volunteers

By Renae on Dec. 07, 2016, at 4:59 p.m.
A man walks out of Lily Bay State Park in Greenville on Nov. 22, 2016. The park closes to cars but is still open to visitors in the off season.

This remote Maine region has a chance to grow

on Dec. 07, 2016, at 6:10 a.m.
“If you don’t change, you die.”
Omar, 4, Anas, 7, and Eyad Raslan, 6, resettled with their parents to Perth-Andover, New Brunswick, this summer. They came through a program of the Canadian government that allows private citizens to sponsor refugees.

Immigrants built rural Maine. Canada shows how they could do so again

on Dec. 05, 2016, at 6:10 a.m.
“It’s a lot harder to hate people once you meet them.”
CONTRIBUTORS
A farmhouse in Harmony.

My thoughts upon leaving rural Maine forever

By Dawn Potter on Dec. 03, 2016, at 8:18 a.m.
Some of us see hard and lonely as true life.
Steve Sherman demonstrates how his skidder, nicknamed Matilda, works in Oxbow, Maine.

The forces pulling apart the lives of Maine’s loggers

on Dec. 01, 2016, at 6:28 a.m.
Three loggers fight to survive as the world shifts around them.
Steve Sherman, the first assessor in Oxbow Plantation, led his community through the process of deorganizing, culminating in a final town vote Nov. 8. He’s pictured on his Christmas tree farm in Oxbow on Nov. 7.

How the decline of Maine’s rural places changes the people left behind

on Nov. 29, 2016, at 6:01 a.m.
Three people grapple with the decline of the communities that made them.

Collectibles and More Sale

By Mary Anne Eason on Nov. 06, 2016, at 7:18 a.m.
Left: Lines of potato barrels, families and old cars in the fields were commons sights back in the middle of the 20th Century. Fort Kent photographer Velma Daigle captured it all with her camera on 35mm color slides. The photo is courtesy of the Fort Kent Historical Society. Right, Terry Theriault exits his delimber while working off the Golden Road in this July 2015 file photo by Ashley L. Conti.

How did your small Maine town shape you?

By Erin Rhoda on Nov. 01, 2016, at 2:48 p.m.
We’d like to hear from you about your experience growing up in small-town Franklin, Somerset, Piscataquis, upper Penobscot, Aroostook, Washington or Hancock counties. How did your hometown shape who you are today, and what has changed in your hometown throughout the years?

Ranked Choice Voting from the Maine League of Women Voters’s Perspective

By Kath Holland on Oct. 28, 2016, at 10:10 a.m.

Boy Scout Spaghetti Dinner

By Tracy Dorr on Oct. 23, 2016, at 7:25 p.m.