CAMPOBELLO ISLAND – The historic Roosevelt home and international park on Campobello Island bustled with a crew from Ken Burns’ Florentine Films just days before the park was to open for the season Saturday.

Burns and his crew are working on a new film, “The Roosevelts,” which will be shown by the Public Broadcasting Station in 2013 as its major fall season opener. Florentine Films is recognized for its groundbreaking documentary style of filmmaking and is best known for “The Civil War,” “The West” and, most recently, “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea.”

“The Roosevelts” will be a six- or seven-part series about Theodore, Franklin Delano and Eleanor Roosevelt. Geoffrey C. Ward, who wrote the script, is the author of two books about FDR, “A First Class Temperament” and “Before the Trumpet,” and has collaborated with Burns on many other film projects, including “The Civil War” and “The West.”

Producer Paul Barnes, who has worked with Burns since 1984, says the series looks at how the Roosevelts were able to overcome personal difficulties and serve the nation. This week, he was supervising the last few days of filming interior shots of the Roosevelt summer home.

The film will feature many of the Roosevelt homes, but the Campobello cottage plays an important part in explaining Franklin and Eleanor’s early marriage, as young parents, and Franklin’s feelings for his “beloved island.”

Filming started in May 2009 and wrapped up with this visit to Campobello. The completed film series will be 12 to 14 hours in length. Editing will take two years.

The Quoddy Tides


Ceremony videos will attempt to save local Legion post

An expanded Memorial Day ceremony Monday has an added significance for a local veterans’ group.

The ceremony, which will take place at the town pier at 10 a.m., will be the launch of an effort to save the American Legion post here.

On Memorial Day, Legion Commander Jeana Durost and others will take to the crowd with cameras to film a video that will be submitted to the ABC network show “Extreme Home Makeover.”

The group’s members hope that the show’s producers will choose them for their proposed project: to turn the Legion hall on Cottage Street into a bed-and-breakfast for returning military personnel.

The effort is a critical one, she said, because dwindling membership and finances have caused the group to contemplate selling the Bar Harbor building. The group has not attracted younger members and has shrunk, she said. Oftentimes they cannot even get a quorum for a meeting.

Durost knows that gaining the help of the ABC series producers is a stretch, but hopes that with enough support from the community it just might happen. For that reason, she is asking everyone, veterans and otherwise, who can come to the Memorial Day ceremony to do so, and to bring their friends.

“I’m putting this out there as a last-ditch effort for my people to come forward,” Durost said. “If it does pan out, I think this is something the community as a whole can get behind.”

Mount Desert Islander


Application forms have June deadline for ‘Schoodic Idol’

First there was “American Idol.” Now, on July 24, there will be “Schoodic Idol” with celebrity judge Kara DioGuardi weighing in on local talent.

The singers will be raising funds for Schoodic Arts for All and the Channing Chapel Preservation Society in Winter Harbor — not vying for a spot on “American Idol,” according to Mary Laury, executive director of Schoodic Arts for All.

“Schoodic Idol is NOT an audition for the TV show,” Laury said in the application form, which was made available online at

The application to audition must be filed electronically and received by Schoodic Arts no later than 4 p.m. on June 11.

The Ellsworth American.


Parents bake bread to keep school staff in face of cutbacks

Parents and the principal of Dresden Elementary School are baking fresh bread and selling it to raise money to keep school staff.

The Dresden Elementary School Position Budget Support Group met to discuss circulating a petition and finding more venues to sell the large loaves of French bread, which have so far been a hot item at local events.

The KIDS Regional School Unit 2 Board of Directors, of which Dresden Elementary is a member, has had to cut positions and reduce work hours throughout the district in response to state funding reductions. Board members reduced the hours of the school custodian from eight hours per day to five. Since early this year, the board has discussed cutting kitchen staff, the school nurse position and the library ed tech position.

Support group members are circulating a petition to see about putting a question on the town warrant asking for the town to fund the part-time school nurse position ($12,700) and a library ed tech position ($3,975). Any money they raise with their bread sales will mean less money asked of the town. They need 70 signatures in order to put the question on the town warrant.

According to Dresden Elementary School Principal Martha Witham, board members agreed to allow the town to raise funds for the part-time positions, but not for the school kitchen. Witham told the support group, whose members are all concerned parents, she did her best to try convincing the board to keep the elementary school kitchen and school lunch program intact.

The Lincoln County News


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