Lifeguards run during their daily training regimen Thursday in Old Orchard Beach. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Today is Friday. Temperatures will be in the low 60s, with rain throughout the state. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

Here’s the latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Another Mainer has died and 21 coronavirus cases were reported across the state on Thursday, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The statewide death toll now stands at 859. Check out our COVID-19 Tracker for more information.

As of 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, 350,256 Mainers have entered the “Vaccinationland Sweepstakes,” according to Robert Long, a spokesperson for the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The jackpot stands at more then $891,000.

Paul LePage files for historic Blaine House return bid against Janet Mills in 2022

In this May 16, 2020, file photo, Paul LePage, sitting in a Lexus SC 430, uses his cellphone to address protesters rallying against executive orders by Gov. Janet Mills related to the coronavirus pandemic in Augusta. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Former two-term Republican Gov. Paul LePage filed with the state to kick off his long-awaited 2022 run against Gov. Janet Mills, officially beginning the race between the two political rivals. 

Maine expands back-to-work bonuses after seeing just 300 applications in 2 weeks

Many businesses are hanging signs in windows to display their hourly rate. This sign is at the Family Dollar in Corinth. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

The payment amount was supposed to drop to $1,000 on July 1, but will now stay at $1,500 through the program’s July 25 end.

After counting on federal relief, Maine restaurants are now told funds have run out

In this June 12, 2020, file photo, Pepino’s owner Susan Stephenson gets ready to hand off a to-go order to a customer at the Bangor restaurant.

Proposals to replenish the fund with $60 billion have been introduced in the U.S. House and Senate.

After nearly 60 years, Saliba’s Rugs has left the Bangor Waterfront

Steve Saliba, owner of Saliba’s Rug Sales & Service, has moved the business out of its longtime Bangor location on the Waterfront and into a new location at 183 Robertson Blvd. in Brewer.

Saliba’s — instantly recognizable from the red “magic carpet” sign on the sides of its huge stucco building — moved to the Waterfront in 1962 and is one of only a few remaining decades-old, family-owned businesses in the Bangor area. 

Maine Turnpike traffic expected to approach 2019 levels over July 4 weekend

In this May 28, 2021, file photo, a motorist from Massachusetts flies an American flag ahead of the Memorial Day holiday while traveling on the Maine Turnpike in Kennebunk. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

The Maine Turnpike Authority is predicting more than 1.1 million transactions on the turnpike between Friday and Monday, up 36 percent from the same period last year.

Old Town mill applies for approval of more efficient equipment

White clouds of steam and smoke billow out from the ND Old Town Mill on Thursday.

The new equipment would allow ND Paper to make good on the unbleached recycled pulp line it announced in April.

Maine is trying to make its youth prison obsolete. Janet Mills doesn’t want to close it.

Long Creek Youth Development Center on Westbrook Street in South Portland.

Gov. Janet Mills has said she prefers another bill that took a steadier approach to reducing the number of youth at Long Creek. She also indicated that she wanted to keep secure detention settings as an option for youth as the state invested in alternatives to prison.

It’s time to apply for Maine’s any-deer permit lottery

Two whitetail deer stand in a field, alert to potential threats. Applications are now being accepted by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife for its any-deer permits and bonus deer permits. Credit: Courtesy of Melissa Huang

The state plans this year to issue approximately 153,910 any-deer permits, which allow hunters possessing them to tag an antlerless deer, or a buck with antlers less than three inches in length.

Balloon releases are now illegal in Maine. There are still ways to celebrate without them.

Mainers may want to find other ways to mark major events after the state banned the mass release of balloons. 

Party people, take note: you can’t release balloons for celebrations in Maine anymore.

In other Maine news…

Brewer father charged with manslaughter told police 6-week-old baby went limp in his arms

Parents arrested after infant overdoses in Corinna

Somerville death ruled a homicide

Teen driver yelling at anti-abortion protesters in Rockland crashes into one of their cars

Protesters call for change within Maine’s child welfare system after 3-year-old’s death

Stock car race tracks lower admission price, move up start times to encourage fans’ return

Maine looks for offshore wind compromise with fishermen

Backpacking cat summits Mount Washington