New trail links the YMCA and Thorne Head Preserve

The Whiskeag Trail, a 5-mile corridor linking the Bath Area Family YMCA to the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust’s Thorne Head Preserve, opened on Saturday.

The trail is a project of Bath Trails, a partnership of the land trust, the city of Bath, local schools, nonprofits, hikers, bicycle riders and businesses.

A trail-building team from the Maine Conservation Corps, with help from many volunteers, worked for two years to construct, level, firm, bridge and sign the trail. The entire length is appropriate for non-motorized use such as mountain bikes and hiking, and includes lovely views of Whiskeag Creek.

Whiskeag Creek runs north from Lily Pond between High Street and State Road into the Kennebec River at Thorne Head. The area contains highly valuable tidal habitat for wading birds, waterfowl and other wildlife.

Land trust offers talks on habitat restoration

Each fall the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust offers a symposium on an environmental topic of global significance and local relevance. This year’s topic explores ecological recovery through habitat restoration, an effort critical to the health of our natural resources and the support they provide to human populations both environmentally and economically.

At 7 p.m. Thursday, John Lichter, associate professor of biology and environmental studies at Bowdoin College, will discuss his current work with a team of researchers from Bates and Bowdoin colleges and the University of Southern Maine on ecological and economic recovery of the Kennebec Estuary.

Author Franklin Burroughs of Bowdoinham will then give a talk titled, “Of Time and a River: Thinking about the Kennebec.”

The lectures are held at the Maine Maritime Museum, 243 Washington St., Bath. A $5 donation is suggested at the door. For reservations, visit or call 442-8400.

The series continues on Oct. 27 with the economics of a healthy ecosystem.


Land purchase will expand Aroostook State Park

Aroostook State Park, already known for its camping, fishing, hiking and birding opportunities, is increasing in size with the purchase of a 145.6-acre parcel next to park lands.

The Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands, under the Maine Department of Conservation, purchased the parcel — appraised at $115,000 — with $60,000 split between Land for Maine’s Future funds and federal Recreational Trails Program funds, plus a generous $55,000 donation of value from the parcel’s Massachusetts owner, Nancy Askin, according to officials.

A celebration of the park expansion will be held at 10 a.m. today at the state park shelter.

A guided fall foliage hike will take place at 11 a.m.

The purchase will increase the park’s size by 25 percent.

For more information, go online to


Active aging group to tour gardens on Thursday

The Spectrum Generations Coastal Community Center is sponsoring a special tour of the Coast Maine Botanical Gardens at 10 a.m. Thursday as part of Active Aging Week.

Admission to the gardens is free for Active Aging Week participants who are 60 and older.

Reservations must be made and boxed lunch orders ($13 pre-payment required) placed by calling 563-1363 by noon on Monday.

The tour will start at 10 a.m. at the gardens’ visitors center, or ask about carpooling when you call to reserve.


Documentary on Allagash will be shown at church

The documentary film, “Northrunner — The Allagash Wilderness Waterway,” will be screened at 7 p.m. Friday at the First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church on Main Street in Kennebunk.

The film is the first in the Sierra Club’s Fall Film Series. Admission is free and dessert will be served at 6:30 p.m.

The 52-minute film features breathtaking scenes of the waterway and interviews with those who know the Allagash best. In previous showings of the film, audiences have raved about the beauty of the waterway and the compelling stories told by those interviewed for the film.

Following the showing, Karen Woodsun of the Sierra Club’s Maine Woods Campaign will lead a discussion on the Allagash Waterway.


Cycling event on Saturday supports cancer center

Six years ago this fall Dr. Chris Kuhn of Yarmouth and Dr. Dave Langdon of Falmouth brought together a group of friends to help celebrate the fact that after their bouts with cancer they were “not dead yet.”

Thus began Chris & Dave’s annual Not Dead Yet Bike Ride & Lobster Bake, to benefit the Cancer Community Center. This year’s ride will be held on Saturday, starting at Pineland Farms.

Registration starts at 9 a.m., with the 60-mile bike ride starting at 10 a.m., the 25-miler at 11 a.m. and the 10-miler at noon.

A family lobster bake including live music, ice cream and children’s activities follows the rides.

To register or for more information, go to


Wildlife refuge seeks help to restore native shrubland

In celebration of National Public Lands Day, Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge is hosting a volunteer work day from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday to help restore native shrubland habitat in Kittery.

The event will concentrate on removing invasive plants such as glossy buckthorn and oriental bittersweet.

All volunteers will receive a coupon for a free entry to their favorite federal public land areas that have entrance fees.

Thick shrubland or thicket habitat is necessary for the survival of the endangered New England cottontail and several migratory bird species in Maine. The refuge is working with private and public partners to create shrublands to recover the cottontail before it needs to be federally listed.

If you are interested in helping, please contact Karrie Schwaab at 646-9226.


Any-deer permit lottery results on state website

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife conducted its annual any-deer permit lottery on Sept. 10 and has posted the results on its website,

The department is issuing 48,825 any-deer (antlerless) permits this year for wildlife management districts 12, 13, 15-17, 20-26, 29. It is bucks only in all other districts.

This year’s allocation represents 3,340 more permits — a 7.5 percent increase — over last year’s number.

The deer hunting (with firearms) season begins with “Maine Residents Only Day” on Oct. 30. The season runs Nov. 1 to Nov. 27.

Youth Deer Hunting Day is Oct. 23 and is open to children older than 10 and younger than 16. Youth hunters are prohibited from taking does in wildlife management areas that had no antlerless deer permit allo- cation.

The department no longer mails permits or transportation tags to winners. Instead, permit winners will need to record their permit number and report the permit number to the registration station when tagging a deer.

The department suggests that permit winners write down their permit number and keep it with their hunting license so it is easily available at the registration station.


Community invited to ride bikes for LiveStrong Day

A community bike ride on Oct. 2 through the streets of Yarmouth will celebrate LiveStrong Day and raise awareness of the 28 million people living with cancer throughout the world.

Cyclists will check in at Yarmouth’s Town Hall at 200 Main St. (rear parking lot) between 9:30 and 10 a.m. All riding abilities are welcome. Cyclists will choose from a 12- or 23-mile ride. Riders are encouraged to wear yellow.

While there is no registration fee to participate in the bike ride, donations to LiveStrong are welcome.

Refreshments will be served at Yarmouth’s Town Hall Community Room following the ride.

Please register in advance by contacting Maura Halkiotis at [email protected] or Deb Nelson at 846-0955.


Maine Huts & Trails to open pedestrian bridge, new hut

The grand opening for the newest hut in the Maine Huts & Trails system will be held Oct. 9.

The fanfare begins with the dedication of a new 200-foot pedestrian bridge at 1 p.m. Oct. 9.

The bridge spans the Dead River connecting the ends of the new Dead River Trail, which leads to the new Grand Falls hut.

At 4 p.m., the new hut will be dedicated.

The annual members barbecue will be held at the Poplar Stream Hut from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 10. Lunch for members is free. Non-members are welcome and will be charged $10. This is a time for participants to socialize over good food and beverages, plus enjoy a stroll or mountain bike ride through the autumn woods of Maine.

Maine Huts & Trails is offering a second night for half-price for guests who stay two nights at one of the huts, until Nov. 7.

For reservations, call 877-634-8824 or go online to