STATEWIDE

SIX MAINERS participated in the National Bike Summit in Washington, D.C., March 9 to 11. The delegation, organized by the Bicycle Coalition of Maine, included Tony Barrett of Harpswell, Nancy Grant of Portland, Charley LaFlamme of Ogunquit, Fred and Cathy Robie of Freeport, and Allison Vogt, of Brunswick. The group met with Sen. Olympia Snowe, Sen. Susan Collins, Rep. Chellie Pingree and Rep. Mike Michaud to discuss bicycling legislation before Congress. A recently introduced bill would create a $2 billion federal grants program to help communities build bicycling and walking networks.

 

STUDENTS from around the state traveled to Worcester (Mass.) Polytechnic Institute earlier this month to compete in a the FIRST Robotics Competition. Teams from Falmouth and Gorham high schools joined to create a robot nicknamed “FalGor” that could maneuver around other robots on a playing field and shoot soccer balls into a goal. Team 172/Northern Force entered the third day of competition in the top 10 out of the 29 teams. Their robot did not make it to the finals, but the team did win the Chrysler Team Spirit Award for the fourth year. Team 172’s robot was designed and built by the students at the Lanco Assembly Systems facility in Westbrook. Lanco and Idexx Laboratories are the team’s lead sponsors.

SOUTH PORTLAND

AIDAN MCKEE, an eighth grade student at Mahoney Middle School, participated as a torch bearer for the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games, which wrapped up Sunday. In the torch relay, McKee, 13, accepted the flame from Michelle Stilwell, a wheelchair racer who won gold in the 100m and 200m at the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games. McKee’s first Paralympic sport experience was at the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games. Author Jeff Theissen invited McKee to contribute to his book “With Glowing Hearts.” Last summer, he traveled to Vancouver to volunteer with some of the wheelchair basketball players. When asked what it was like to be a part of the torch relay, McKee said, “It was really inspiring, not only because it represents the Paralympics and the great athletes but also because it was something that I will remember my whole life and will be able to reflect on as well.”

FALMOUTH

THE MARCH OF DIMES annual March for Babies will be held in Maine. Last year, the March of Dimes invested $443,533 to improve the health of babies in Maine. The March of Dimes contributed $288,200 to the Jackson Laboratory for prematurity related research. In addition, more than $10,000 was allocated to local community projects such as anti-smoking campaigns and hospital outreach as well as $82,248 for educational programs and collaborative projects. Walks include May 2 in Bath/Brunswick, Greater Portland, Lewiston/Auburn, Rockland, Rumford, Saco/Biddeford and Sanford. To join a walk near you, visit www.marchforbabies.org or call 878-1199.

 

A FALMOUTH HIGH SCHOOL TEAM of seniors won the regional title in the Northern New England Regional Science Bowl held last month. The team includes Tyler Evers, Ryan Gao, Chadwick Prichard, Ben Snowdon and Alyssa Yeung. They went undefeated during the qualifying round and won defeated two teams from the School of Science and Mathematics in the semifinal.

PORTLAND

THE UNIVERSITY OF MAINE Cooperative Extension has a variety of courses and workshops for horticulture, agriculture and the nature enthusiasts starting at the beginning of April. Courses include Backyard Poultry, How to Build a Cold Frame, Landowner Woodlot, Recipe to Market, GPS and garden tours. For more information on specific offerings, call the Cumberland County Extension Office at 780-4205.

 

CHEVERUS HIGH SCHOOL senior Sarah Shapiro and junior Emma Shapiro recently played concerts play with Daniel Bernard Roumain and the New Clef Coalition, sponsored by Bay Chamber Concerts. Sarah plays string bass in the Cheverus string ensemble, jazz band and jazz combo. Emma plays the bassoon in the concert band and sings in the concert and jazz choirs. The Bay Chamber Concerts commissioned Roumain to create “Symphony for the Dance Floor,” which was performed throughout Maine, with audience members making donations to Wish for Haiti.

FREEPORT

WOLFE’S NECK FARM is hosting April Vacation Camp for children, combining farming, gardening and exploring forest and wetland ecosystems into one outdoor experience. Camp will be April 19-23, with the option of signing up for a day or the whole week. A special celebration of Earth Day will be Thursday. For more information, call 865-4363 or visit www.wolfesneckfarm.org.

STANDISH

SOUTHERN MAINE AGENCY on Aging and Bon Appetit at Saint Joseph’s College have created an “As You Like It” program, in which seniors can enjoy discounted tickets when dining at Bon Appetit on campus, which offers nutritious food with a strong emphasis on sustainability. The new partnership will provide a safe, healthy and stimulating environment for seniors, while bringing young and old closer together, cafe general manager Stuart Leckie said.

WINDHAM

SARA CONANT, 18, has been honored with a President’s Volunteer Service Award. The award was presented by The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program on behalf of President Obama. Conant participated in the Spirit of Community program as a representative of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension 4-H in Cumberland County. She has volunteered numerous hours on the dog project area of 4-H and has helped to coordinate 4-H club, county and state level activities to increase youth awareness and provide educational opportunities around dog agility.