Tri-ing and Succeeding

I am writing this on the evening of one of my favorite days of summer; the Tri for a Cure, an event I thoroughly enjoy watching. In its fifth year, records were broken in the number of women who participated and also the amount of money raised for the Maine Cancer Foundation. This year, rain fell on the more than 1,000 women who swam, pedaled and ran to help raise money to rid ourselves of this terrible disease and while all the athletes and spectators were soaked and cold at the end, our hearts were overwhelmingly warm.

The event begins with a tribute to survivors who then begin their swim and are followed by the remaining women. I run from station to station to cheer on my friends and all the brave women who are pushing their limits to prove to themselves that they can and they must. For some, this is on their “bucket list.” For others, it’s a very personal triumph to preserve the memory of a lost one, to raise awareness, or to raise funds to cure cancer. For me, it is an amazing experience to talk to these women, hear their stories and provide support.

A huge heart-felt congratulations and thank-you goes out to all the women who “tri-ed” and especially those from Raymond. I apologize to any of you whom I am forgetting but please join me in congratulating Ellen Gagne, Kristin Fielding, Sue, Phoebe and Elizabeth Crockett, Ruth Wood, and Jeanmarie Miller, as well as Jeri Keane-Dryer, Vicki Gordan and Brenda Stevenson who raced as a team.

The event raised more than a million dollars for cancer research and patient assistant programs. Women of all shapes, sizes and ages participated with the youngest athlete only 17 years old and the oldest 71. Together they proved that anything is possible.

Gotta Cut Loose

If you missed last weekend’s performances of “Footloose” at Windham Center Stage Theater, you have another chance to see this very fun, high-energy show performed by local talent and directed by Matthew Ryder. “Footloose” is the perfect summer musical and will be held on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 3 and 4, at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 4 p.m. so don’t miss your last chance to cut loose and be thoroughly entertained. Last weekend’s shows were extremely popular and filled the house, so call 893-2098 or visit to reserve your tickets. They are only $12 for adults, $10 for students/seniors and well worth it.

Searching the Night Sky

Summer is a fabulous time to sit out under the stars and enjoy the many constellations. Do not forget, the Raymond Village Library is the fortunate recipient of a new Orion StarBlast 4.5-inch telescope donated by Cornerstones of Science in conjunction with the New Hampshire Astronomical Society. The telescope is available for loan to adult patrons and offers a great way to view the summer sky. Call the library at 655-4283 to reserve the telescope.

Perseids Meteors with Loon Echo

And speaking of the new telescope, Loon Echo Land Trust will be hosting a meteor shower gazing party atop Hacker’s Hill on Sunday, Aug. 12 at 10 p.m. during which they will be using the library’s new telescope. The Perseids meteor shower offers viewers approximately 60 meteors an hour and this year, conditions are almost optimal as there will only be a slight waning crescent moon keeping the night sky dark. Peak viewing times are between 10 p.m. and midnight, so don’t miss this excellent viewing opportunity from a perfect location. Light refreshments will be offered to keep viewers alert. The gate will be open between 9:30 p.m. to midnight. For more information, contact Beth at Loon Echo at 647-4352.

Tent Book Sale

A huge thank-you goes out to all for supporting the Raymond Village Library’s annual summer book sale. This year, the library is doing something a bit different, which is sure to be fun for the whole family. On Sunday, Aug. 19, there will be an end-of-summer Tent Book Sale from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Baked goods will be available for purchase and there will be an activities table for tots to teens. Books of every type, including some rare finds as well as lots of children’s books and puzzles, audio books, music CDs and videos will be for sale at reduced prices. Look for the tent and balloons and get ready to take advantage of some incredible deals. For more information, call the library at 655-4283.

Learn to E-Read

I am an avid reader and obviously a loyal fan of the library. After all, why should I buy books when I can read them for free? If you prefer to listen to books on audiotape or read your books via a digital-age electronic device, did you know you can download books from the library for free? Are you a lucky recipient who has been given an e-reader but has not yet figured it out, or do you just want to find out more about them? You are invited to join Patrick Therrien and Jared Leadbetter from the Maine State Library in a two-hour introduction to the digital world of reading. You can expect to see a few of the more popular devices demonstrated and learn about some of the available resources including the statewide Overdrive Digital Library and other free services. Don’t miss this free program, which will be held on Wednesday, Aug. 22, from 10 a.m. until noon at the Raymond Village Library. Space is limited for this program, so call 655-4283 or stop in to register.

Racing for Hacker’s Hill

The date is getting closer and I am excited to remind you of the new and unique event coming to town. Aligning with Loon Echo’s quest to preserve the beloved Hacker’s Hill so all can continue to enjoy this special spot, we have planned a race with a finish line on top of the hill. The inaugural Hackers Hill Preservation Run will take place on Saturday, Aug. 11, at 8:30 a.m., and this is not your everyday 5K. The race will begin at the bottom of Quaker Ridge Road near Blacksmith Winery where runners will begin their trek along and up the ridge, gaining elevation as they go and eventually turning up the quarter-mile straight-up road to the summit of Hackers Hill. This 4-mile course is bound to be challenging but all runners will be treated to spectacular views at the top as well as water stops on the way and snacks, water and awards at the finish. The cost is only $20 for adults and $15 for those under 18, and all proceeds from this event will go to the protection and stewardship of Hacker’s Hill. Come out and participate in this inaugural event and help preserve Hacker’s Hill. For a registration form, visit or contact me directly at [email protected]. This event is being sponsored by many local businesses and as always, I’m grateful to live in a community that cares so much about each other and our land.

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