1. President Trump Tells Gov. Mills to Open up the State

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    President Donald Trump paid Maine a visit last Friday to see Puritan Medical Products in Guilford.  The company is one of only two major companies that manufacture medical swabs needed for coronavirus testing.  The other is in Italy.

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  2. We Salute Calais High School Class of 2020

     

    Calais High School Graduates Class of 2020:

    From Principal Spearin

    You and your peers have faced challenges at the end of your Senior year that never could have been predicted. Most would say you were robbed of experiences every senior should experience, and I agree. However, I am incredibly impressed with the way you and your peers have handled these challenges. 

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  3. Outdoor Activities, Including Pickleball, Begin to Make a Comeback

     

    By Natalie Boomer

    natalie@calais.news

    St. Croix Valley Pickleball games have been put on pause since the month of March due to COVID-19. Tennis courts have finally reopened, and the game can be played once again with new rules and regulations. 

    Games started back up again on Wednesday, May 27th at the Woodland Jr/Sr High School and the Calais tennis courts. 

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  4. Who’s that Waving Runner?

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    It’s not uncommon to drive into or out of Calais through Magurrewock and spot the man who waves at passing vehicles.  He is sometimes seen jogging, sometimes walking, sometimes riding his bike, sometimes with his canine friend Candy, but always waving at each and every passing vehicle. That man is Rick Roussel.

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  5. Road Toll Fundraisers Set to Begin this Month

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Road tolls in Calais are huge fundraisers for many organizations, ten of them to be exact.  Each year, groups can apply with the city to hold one, but only ten spots are allowed, per the city’s ordinance.  

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  6. Famous Movie Truck Leaves Calais Bound for England

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Those familiar with the 1986 movie Big Trouble in Little China, starring Kurt Russell, are likely familiar with “Pork Chop Express,” the 1985 Freightliner FLC-120 driven by Russell in the film.  What some may not know is that that truck made Calais its home in 2006.  

    Owned by Wilfred O’Brien, the Freightliner was operated by him until just two years ago.  O’Brien drove the truck quite regularly, except during inclement weather.

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  7. Senior Banners on Display

    Each Calais High School Class of 2020 graduate’s photo is displayed on a banner that now hangs on the downtown light poles, thanks to Calais Public Works Department.  (Photo by Jayna Smith)

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  8. Calais Banner Exhibit Brings Awareness of Domestic Violence

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

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  9. Your Package Might Be Late!

    Postmaster Debbie Dow recently shared to social media this photo of a postal plant.  She explained that many packages are sitting in plants because of staffing issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but gave assurance that postal and UPS workers are still hard at work, many actually doing the work of two or three people.  Dow added, "So when you think your package is going to arrive [at the Calais post office] at a certain time, please remember there is a pandemic and you might not receive it for a bit."  (Photo courtesy of Postmaster Debbie Dow)

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  10. Round Pond Memorial Day Service of Remembrance

     

    Submitted by Ann Montgomery

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  11. Flags Placed at Graves of Fallen Veterans

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Last Saturday at Calais Cemetery, the Veterans buried there were remembered, thanks to the many local volunteers who dedicated themselves to placing flags on each grave.

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  12. Princeton Man Brings Interesting Hobby to the Area

     

    By Natalie Boomer

    natalie@calais.news

    Bill Seavey, of Princeton, has always wanted to become a pilot, but went for the next best thing and started flying radio-controlled aircraft, and he hasn’t stopped for the last 20 years.

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  13. Border Closure Continues

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    The United States and Canada recently reached an agreement to continue the closure of the border to all non-essential travel, at least until June 21st.  Border restrictions were first announced on March 18th.  

    The closure will continue the prohibition of non-essential traffic, allowing only for the flow of trade and commerce, such as truckers, as well as healthcare workers who live and work on opposite sides of the border.

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  14. Lioness Yard Sale Will be Hub for Community-Wide Yard Sales

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    With the recent quarantine, many friends and members of the Calais Lioness Club have used the time to thoroughly clean their garages, basements, attics, and closets, gathering all those items that no longer fit, have been collecting dust, or simply are no longer useful.  Many of those items will be ready at the bargain hunter’s paradise--the annual Calais Lioness Yard Sale.

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  15. Blue Knights MC Distributes Food to Pantries Across the State

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Last Friday, the Irene Chadbourne Ecumenical Food Pantry in Calais and the Woodland Community Food Pantry in Baileyville each received a visit from members of the Blue Knights motorcycle club.  Led by David and Sherri Wight, the club distributed to each pantry food packets from a University of Maine Honors College public service project.  

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  16. Firehouse Nears Completion

     

    By Kaileigh Deacon

    On Church Street, next to the city building, is the St. Croix No. 1 Firehouse, which has been a staple fixture in Calais for over 100 years. Though the operational days of the firehouse are long behind it, the building and its history are still very much a part of the Calais community. For hosting meetings and events, as well as the beloved community Christmas party, the Firehouse is an important part of moving forward while honoring the past.

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  17. Heroes Honored and Remembered on Memorial Day

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Events of Memorial Day 2020 may have been very different from prior years, especially with the exclusion of a parade and the always well-attended ceremony at Memorial Park; however, ceremonies, although modified, were still held in Calais to pay tribute to our fallen heroes. 

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  18. First National Bank Celebrates National EMS Week

     

    First National Bank recently announced it has made donations totaling $2,200 to eleven Emergency Medical Service organizations in the bank’s market area in response to National EMS Week.

    In 1974, President Gerald Ford proclaimed EMS Week to celebrate and recognize EMS practitioners and the important work they do in our nation. The 46th annual National EMS Week is held May 17th through May 23, 2020.

    Washington County recipients included: Calais Fire-EMS and Downeast EMS.

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  19. City Discusses Hospital Liaison Committee

     

    By Kaileigh Deacon

    Last Thursday’s City Council meeting, held via Facebook Live, was focused on how Calais will continue to operate and move forward. Since Calais Regional Hospital is a big part of the City of Calais, City Manager Mike Ellis proposed that the council and the hospital form a liaison committee. This committee would act much the same way as the liaison committee with the school, which allows for discussion and concerns to be addressed without full boards or councils.

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  20. Trescott Drug Raid Nabs Three

     

    Maine Drug Enforcement says three men were arrested on drug charges in the Washington County Town of Trescott overnight that evolved into a police standoff.  As part of an ongoing criminal investigation, Maine Drug Enforcement Agency (MDEA) and Washington County Sheriff’s Deputies served a search warrant at the home of Mark Fields on County Road in Trescott Wednesday evening 

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  21. Virtual Presentation of Maine’s Native Turtles

     

    By Natalie Boomer 

    natalie@calais.news

    The Downeast Coastal Conservancy and nature photographer Paul Powers will be hosting a virtual presentation on Maine’s native turtles on Thursday, May 28th. 

    They will be “Bringing Maine’s Native freshwater turtles out of their shells and into the spotlight,” with part two of Powers’ educational series on Maine’s native amphibians and reptiles. 

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  22. WHS Alumnus Joins UMaine Baseball Coaching Staff

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Woodland native Ryan Lincoln has quite a list of baseball accolades and coaching experience under his belt, and now he has even more to add to his ever-growing list.  Last week, Lincoln was named Director of Baseball Operations for the University of Maine Black Bears.

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  23. Pandemic Will Not Cancel Patriotism this Memorial Day

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    The coronavirus scare has canceled many events across the world, but American Legion Sherman Brothers Post No. 3 Commander Mike McLean said it will not cancel patriotism this Memorial Day, and those who paid the ultimate sacrifice will still be remembered and honored.  “At least it’s something we can do for our veterans,” he said.  “We’ll never let a fallen soldier down.”

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  24. Let's Get Back to Work Cautiously

     

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  25. City Council says, Calais is Open for Business 

    Mike Sherrard addresses his fellow councilors, stating, “The community needs to let everyone in the State of Maine know that we’re open for business and we’ve got to get back to work.” Councilor Marcia Rogers, who was opposed to Sherrard’s motion, citing a concern for the welfare of the citizens of Calais, looks on. (City of Calais Facebook Live photo)

    VIDEO OF COUNCIL MEETING: 

    https://www.facebook.com/CityofCalais/videos/378523716398725/

    Will Not Enforce Governor’s Orders, Declares All Businesses Essential

    by Jayna Smith, jayna@calais.news

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  26. Now’s the Time to Harvest Your Fiddleheads

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Fiddleheads, the young coiled fronds of the ostrich fern, are a springtime delicacy in Maine and New Brunswick, and in other Northeastern states and Maritime provinces.  According to University of Maine Cooperative Extension, nearly all ferns have fiddleheads, but not all fiddleheads are edible. 

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  27. Artist Hosts Painting Retreat in Lubec

     

    By Natalie Boomer

    natalie@calais.news

    Michael Chesley Johnson will begin his 16th season hosting painting retreats in Lubec this summer. These quiet workshops are for the plein air painter, or outdoor painter, who enjoys cobblestone beaches, romantic lighthouses, broad meadows, overlooking cliffs, working harbors and more.

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  28. Grand Lake Stream Folk Art Festival Cancelled For 2020

     

    Due to State Mandate Regarding Large Gatherings 

    Organizers of the Grand Lake Stream Folk Art Festival have officially pulled the plug on this year’s festival following Governor Mills’ news conference on Tuesday, April 28, in which she announced that no gatherings could be held in the state of Maine with more than 50 people until at least the first of September, to ensure the health and safety of residents during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  This year’s festival was planned for July 25th and 26th.

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  29. Youth Find Their Voices Through 4-H Public Speaking

     

    If you ask many adults what their greatest fear is, public speaking will top the list for many. The University of Maine Cooperative 4-H Program gives youth an opportunity to overcome those fears by learning the proper way to construct a presentation and present it in front of an audience. 

    On March 8th, 4-H youth presented at the Washington County 4-H Public Speaking Tournament held at the Washington County Community College in Calais. 

    Here are the presentations and the results:

    Cloverbud Division (ages 5-8)

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  30. Work Continues on Downtown Buildings

     

    By Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    On Saturday, May 2nd, barricades had to be placed in front of the former Over & Under Beef & Brew building, also known as the McAllister building, at 393 Main Street. This occurred after debris from the face and roof of the building was falling to the sidewalk below.

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  31. CMHS Painting by Local Artist to Include Former Students

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Most in the area are familiar with Tom Brennan and his works of art.  From his annual art shows during International Homecoming Festival to his work displayed in the city building, much of his work depicts familiar faces and other images representative of the St. Croix Valley.

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  32. CES Continues Books for Bikes

     

    By Kaileigh Deacon

    Spring is a long time coming in Maine, and the urge to get outside and be active builds as we push through the winter months of snow, ice, and cold. The anticipation of spring and finally being able to get outside in warmer weather is especially strong for kids and can make them just a little antsy.  At Calais Elementary School and other elementary schools around Washington County, the Masons have partnered with them to reward some lucky students for keeping the learning going at home with the Books for Bikes campaign.

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  33. Amid Pandemic, Cruise Ship Hopes to Berth in Eastport

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Vigorous debate erupted last week after Eastport Port Authority Executive Director Chris Gardner announced the possible arrival of the 785-foot Oceania Cruises vessel, Riviera, in the coming days or weeks. If approved, the vessel would arrive in Eastport carrying only crewmembers and could stay docked there for several weeks.

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  34. Lowest Gas Prices, Special Offers Used to Attract Customers Amid Pandemic

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    With businesses nationwide suffering amid the COVID-19 pandemic, border-town businesses have faced an added disruption with not only a decrease in American customers but also a decrease--or even a halt--in Canadian traffic.  Such is true at the two Calais-based Duty Free Americas (DFA) and its two convenience stores/gas stations, Hardwicke’s and Best Stop.  

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  35. New Brunswick Successfully Tackling COVID-19

    By Jean-Pierre Keikens, covexit.com

    When compared to its neighbor Quebec, the Province of New Brunswick shows extraordinary results in its fight against COVID-19.

    To date, there have been 118 cases of COVID-19 in New Brunswick, and 112 of them, or 95%, have been reported to have recovered. There were no deaths.

    Quebec meanwhile is at 24,982 cases. Only 5,517 (or 22%) were declared recovered, and there have already been 1,599 deaths.

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  36. United Way of Eastern Maine COVID-19 Response Fund Assists AMHC Telehealth Program

     

    Aroostook Mental Health Services, Inc. (AMHC) recently received $1,000 from United Way of Eastern Maine’s COVID-19 Response Fund. “This pandemic required a swift response in how we deliver services to the most vulnerable in our catchment area,” shared Ellen Bemis, CEO. “Behavioral health services are more critical than ever, and we are grateful for the help United Way of Eastern Maine (UWEM) has provided.”

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  37. News from the Negev Desert, Israel

     

    By Anav Silverman Peretz

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  38. What’s Up, Calais?

     

    By Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

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  39. Local Rebuilds Cars for Fun

     

    By Natalie Boomer 

    natalie@calais.news

    Bruce White, of Baileyville, has been using his time while socially distancing the same as he would on any other occasion:  taking old things apart to make them new again. 

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  40. Wearing Masks Helps Protect the Common Good and Health of All

     

    By Natalie Boomer, Pierre Little

    natalie@calais.news

    Editor’s Note: Wearing a mask helps protect the common good and health of everyone in the community at times of pandemic and is an act of kindness and it is not a political act.

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  41. Community Scavenger Hunt Brings Community Together

     

    By Kaileigh Deacon

    It isn’t until times seem the most strange and dark that the color of a person and community truly shine through. With a strange new way to go to school, work, and even enjoy times with family, it has been a period of constant change for many and led to many getting a sense of cabin fever, just as the weather is getting nicer.

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  42. Pandemic Derails Occurrence of 47th Annual International Festival

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Since 1974, the International Homecoming Festival has been a significant event for the City of Calais and Town of St. Stephen.  Celebrating the long-standing friendship between the two communities, the festival brings many to the area to celebrate events on both sides of the border and always gives the local economy a boost. This year, however, International Homecoming Festival joins the long list of canceled summer 2020 events.  

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  43. Roundtable Discussion Highlights Need for Federal Funding of Rural Hospitals

     

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    On Thursday, April 30th, U.S. Senate candidate Sara Gideon hosted a virtual roundtable discussion with local healthcare leaders and city officials. The group discussed the many challenges facing rural hospitals, especially during the current pandemic, with Gideon describing the current status of rural healthcare as a “crisis situation.”  

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  44. Fun Wildlife Photos

    A Harp Seal on the beach in Lubec, taken on Earth Day! (Photo by Angie Cummings)

    A chipmunk. (Photo by Donna Melanson)

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  45. Citing Coronavirus Effects, Hospital Announces Reduction in Staff

     

    Service Lines Remain Available for Patient Care

    Jayna Smith

    jayna@calais.news

    Calais Regional Hospital filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last September, citing a decrease in paying and insured patients, inadequate reimbursement from MaineCare, and greater regulatory requirements, among other factors.  

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