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Wednesday, 27 July 2011 05:38

A few fairs and festivals

Written by Allen Adams
Maine's summer offers a wide variety of celebrations

Summertime in Maine is truly a wonderful time. The sun is shining, the birds are singing - we're all going off to the beach or up to camp. We're hiking and biking all over the beautiful landscape.

But suppose you don't like to swim. Maybe you're not all that interested in hiking or biking. Does that mean the Maine summer has nothing for you? The answer, happily, is no. So what are your other options?

Fairs. Festivals. Celebrations of various people, places and things abound around the state at this time of year. You can just hop in the car and find something to enjoy. There's artistic excitement and culinary wonder, food and fun all over the map. Some take place over the course of a few days or a week, while others stretch across large chunks of the summer.

Wednesday, 06 April 2011 05:38

Celebrating Beer Day

Written by Allen Adams

One of the greatest things about this job is that I'm always learning new things. For instance, until just a few short weeks ago, I had never heard of National Beer Day or its companion holiday, New Beer's Eve.

National Beer Day takes place on April 7 every year. Why April 7? So glad you asked.

The Prohibition era in the United States began in 1920 when the 18th Amendment to the Constitution was effected, outlawing the sale, manufacture and transportation of alcohol on a national level. The National Prohibition Act, passed in 1919 and popularly known as the Volstead Act, established the legal definition of intoxicating liquor and the assorted punishments for producing or selling it.

Wednesday, 22 June 2011 05:38

Northern Writes shines on

Written by Allen Adams
New play festival celebrates five years

When theatre is good, it can be among the most evocative of art forms. A well-crafted play can touch the viewer and make the audience respond in a very honest and visceral way. A great play makes you feel.

Regardless of whether we're talking about classic creators like Shakespeare or Chekhov, more contemporary masters like Williams or Beckett, or current authors like Mamet or Stoppard, one significant characteristic of a true theatrical masterpiece is common to each and every one of the greats.

Every play was a new play, once upon a time.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011 05:38

Summer Movies 2011

Written by Allen Adams
sequels, superheroes and silliness

The summer blockbuster season is always packed with dozens of movies to choose from. However, this particular summer seems rife with a few very specific types of films.

The multiplexes will be full of sequels this season, revisiting and recreating some of our favorite characters. Of course, there will be plenty of silliness as well - laughter is a joy for all seasons. Meanwhile, superhero movies abound.

Sure, there are a lot of movies that don't fall into any of these particular categories. We'll look at a few of them, too.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011 05:38

The Great Maine Disc Golf Tour

Written by Allen Adams
Exploring some of Central Maine's disc golf courses

In summertime in Maine, there are all sorts of things to do outside. We go the beach, we swim, we play golf - there's a lot of fun to be had. But there are other things to do, things that offer a lot of potential for outdoor enjoyment, that a lot of people may not be aware of.

Things like disc golf.

And all you have to do is take a brief trip to get access to a surprising number of courses. Between Waterville and Brunswick alone, there are more than a dozen different courses to sample. Some of the locations have two or even three different courses on the same site. It offers the opportunity to play a whole lot of disc golf on a whole lot of different places in a fairly short time.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011 05:38

Laughing is a beautiful look

Written by Allen Adams
A conversation with Bill Cosby

Quick - name your top five stand-up comedians of all time.

Got a list? I'm willing to bet that at least one of the names on that list is Bill Cosby (though I freely admit that if you've seen the cover of this edition, you've probably got Cosby on the mind). For decades, Bill Cosby has been bringing his own unique take on comedy to millions of people through his live performances and numerous television and movie ventures. He's one of the most famous men in America, not to mention one of the most admired.

Recently, Mr. Cosby - who has a performance coming up on June 24 at the Augusta Civic Center - was kind enough to agree to spend a few minutes chatting with me. Little did I realize just how different this interview was going to be.

It started right at the beginning. When I asked if he was excited about the upcoming show, he laughed and said, "I've got other things to do, man. Shucks." I could hear the grin in his voice as he said it. And then, without prompting, he launched into what had to be the most hilarious outlining of a travel itinerary in the history of ever.

Wednesday, 29 June 2011 05:38

What? What? Putt-putt!

Written by Katy England
Because I suck at real golf

Golf is a game that is played by kingpins, politicians and the elite of society. I am none of those things. I can hit golf balls and enjoy smacking a bucket of balls at the driving range. The issue is, despite being actually able to hit the balls, there's no rhyme or reason (at least that I can see) to which direction the balls fly or how far they fly.

I don't see the fun in walking halfway across creation chasing a little ball that I hardly have any willful control over. So for me, it's mini-golf all the way.

Maybe it's the ADHD, maybe it's the simple fact that I have the priorities of a 12-year-old boy, or maybe I just like windmills more than an educated adult should.

Wednesday, 01 June 2011 05:38

Grillin' like a villain

Written by Katy England
Now's the time for outdoor cooking, eating and general tomfoolery
Memorial Day Weekend marked the unofficial beginning of summer. We all know the calendar claims summer begins in late June, but we have to get cracking to take advantage of this short but wonderful season. And that means breaking out the grill.

Now, in fairness, I don't actually "break out" my grill, because in a fit of stubborn pique, I keep my grill on my porch all winter and serve up a steak in the bleak cold of January just to make myself feel better. However, some people do slap on a cover and haul their grill into the garage or shed for the winter months.

Thursday, 17 November 2011 10:03

Black Midnight 2011

Written by Mike Fern
New hours, new offers and a new approach as retailers brace for holiday season

BANGOR With the holidays fast approaching, retailers are gearing up for their annual pilgrimage into what many are hoping will be a lucrative start to this year's holiday shopping season. For many retailers, this year also means a few changes that will forever alter the shopping landscape where extended hours and online strategies will make or break this year's bottom line.

According to the National Retail Federation, the nation's largest trade group that tracks data from the U.S. Department of Commerce, holiday shopping beginning on Black Friday, Nov. 25, is estimated to increase 2.8 percent this year to just over $465 billion. That comes on the heels of a healthy 5.2 percent increase in 2010, which surprised many analysts who predicted sales would fall below the 10-year average of 2.6 percent.

'Retailers are optimistic that a combination of strong promotions and lean inventory levels will help them address consumer caution this holiday season,' said Matthew Shay, NRF president and CEO. 'While businesses remain concerned over the viability of the economic recovery, there is no doubt that the retail industry is in a better position this year to handle consumer uncertainty than it was in 2008 and 2009.'

Thursday, 27 October 2011 09:34

Halloween Happenings

Written by Katy England

Halloween is a magical time of year where kids get to dress up and get candy. More and more adults are taking advantage of the holiday to dress up and party the night away. There's lots of haunting happenings all over the state. Here are a few ways to get your scare fix this Halloween.

Rocky for Equality to perform Oct. 27 - 30 The Next Generation Theater 

BREWER - The Rocky Horror Picture Show will be performed at the Next Generation Theatre in Brewer on Oct. 27 through 30 at 8 p.m., with an additional show at 11 p.m. on Oct. 29. All proceeds from the show will be donated to Equality Maine.

The show is for mature audiences only! Ages 16 and up and/or parental guidance is recommended. For tickets and more information contact Becca Hodgdon at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit

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