The National Merit Scholarship Corporation recently announced that Kennebunk High School senior Sofie Dumas is among the National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist students in the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program. Over 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2020 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship qualifying test, which served as the initial screen of program entrants.

Sofie Dumas Courtesy photo

The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state. The number of semifinalists in a state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the national total of graduating seniors.

“Becoming a semifinalist is a special time for Sofie, her family, and for Kennebunk High School,” said Jeremie Sirois, principal at Kennebunk High School, in the Sept. 17 news release. “I am proud of her and hope that she is chosen as a finalist. Sofie is an amazing young lady with a bright future.”

Dumas is among 16,000 semifinalist students throughout the nation being recognized for their academic promise. Semifinalist students placed among the top 16,000 scorers of more than 1.6 million students who entered the 2022 competition by taking the 2021 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. From the approximately 16,000 semifinalists, about 15,000 are expected to advance to the finalist level, and in February they will be notified of this designation.

To become a finalist, the semifinalist(s) and a high school official must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which they provide information about the semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school and community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment, and honors and awards received. A semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, and write an essay.

Planeteers collect clothing


The Planeteers of Southern Maine partnered with HELPSY, the largest clothing collection company in the northeast, to host a clothing drive event at the Kennebunk Transfer Station on Sept. 18. The group welcomed a steady stream of cars and collected more than 7,000 pounds of unwanted clothing to recycle, diverting these items from filling up local landfills!

The Planeteers of Southern Maine partnering with HELPSY, collected 7,120 pounds of unwanted clothing and other textiles during a Sept. 18 clothing drive. Courtesy photo

“In the New England tradition ‘use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without,’ with ever increased tons of textile goods being produced, we need more than ever to find ways to recycle them,” said Andrea Roth Kimmich, founding member of the Planeteers, in a Sept. 23 news release.

According to the Planeteers, on average, items collected during a clothing drive are 50 percent reusable and 45 percent is recyclable. The bags will be sorted by HELPSY partners and divided into grades. The higher grades are resold to thrift stores in North America and other secondhand markets around the world. The lower grades go to industrial use or things like stuffing and insulation. Only 5 percent, mostly wet or moldy items, are unusable.

As a grassroots effort, the Planeteers of Southern Maine is a group of individuals dedicated to help create a sustainable future for the planet by encouraging action on climate change, clean oceans, and other environmental issues at the local level.

HELPSY partners with municipalities and organizations across 10 states to collect unwanted clothing and other textiles.

“Through a combination of clothing drives, home pick-ups, thrift store partners and clothing receptacles, HELPSY diverts nearly 30 million pounds of textiles from landfills every year,” said Dan Green, co-founder and CEO of HELPSY, in an email.


HELPSY accepts clean, dry, and bagged clothing and fashion accessories (stained, worn or torn is fine) including dresses, shirts, pants, suits, coats, gloves, hats, belts, ties, scarves, wallets, purses, backpacks, totes, shoes, towels, bedding, costumes, curtains, placements, tablecloths, stuffed animals and throw rugs.

For more information about HELPSY and clothing recycling, visit For more information about the Planeteers of Southern Maine, visit

Historical society offers after-school program

Artist and experienced educator, Ann Thompson, is offering a five-week, after-school art program designed to give students an opportunity to try a variety of crafts. Weather permitting, the classes will be held outdoors. Some of the crafts may take place inside the art barn at the Pasco campus with the doors wide open for airflow.

Participants are asked to dress warmly or bring layers. An email confirming  enrollment will follow with a detailed list of any supplies needed. The cost is $260 per child (nonmembers) and $240 per child (members). For more information or to register, visit

Middle school book group to meet


Middle School of the Kennebunks Book Club will meet virtually on Wednesday, Oct. 27. Participants should visit the Kennebunk Free Library Facebook page for a link to the Zoom meeting. Meetings will run from 2:15 until 3:30 p.m., open to teens in the sixth to eighth grade.

The book club is being offered by Louis T. Graves Memorial Public Library and Kennebunk Free Library. Hosts will be Terri Bauld from Graves Library and Jon Roy from Kennebunk Free Library. This month, the group will read “Small Spaces” by Katherine Arden. Participants can stop by either library to pick up a copy of the book.

Participants should sign up in advance by calling either the Graves Library (967-2778( or Kennebunk Free Library (985-2173). The book should be read in advance of the meeting. For more information, call either library.

October’s featured artist introduced

Day’s End by Deborah Joan Granneman. Courtesy image

Kennebunk Free Library, in a Sept. 15 news release, announced its featured exhibit for October. The exhibit, titled “The Finer Details,” will feature the colored pencil and pastel art by Deborah Joan Granneman. The public is invited to view the exhibit in the Speers Gallery beginning Oct. 1.

Granneman’s formal education includes a BA in fine arts from the University of Delaware, with a major in print-making and photography. She has also taken several graphic arts courses at the Southern New Hampshire University and attended the Portland School of Art, currently known as the Maine College of Art, for a course in lost wax bronze sculpture.


She has been a forensic artist and mapper in accident reconstruction for the past 24 years. She has also designed several logos for individuals and organizations. Her fine art mediums of choice have always been pencil and pastels. For the past 20 years she has also been a pet portrait artist in graphite and colored pencil.

Granneman has been a member of the Kittery Art Association Board of Trustees since 2017 and has exhibited in five shows at the Kittery Art Association gallery from 2017 to 2021.

“As artists, the most that we can hope to do is capture that moment and depict it in the best way that we can and if we’re lucky, someone else will feel it,” Granneman said in an email.

Found My Marbles by Deborah Joan Granneman. Granneman is October’s featured artist at Kennebunk Free Library. Courtesy image

The exhibit will be available during regular library hours when the gallery is not in use for library programs. Guests should check the library website for current hours and gallery access.

Arundel resident named to dean’s list

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences announced that Sarah Couture was named to the dean’s list for the spring 2021 semester. Couture is a native of Arundel and is pursuing a bachelor of science in medical and molecular biology. She will graduate from the Boston campus in 2021.


Not-so-spooky Halloween story time offered

Kennebunk Free Library will host an outdoor Halloween story time on Wednesday, Oct. 27 at 6 p.m. Participants will hear a story or two, take home a bewitching craft and are invited to wear costumes.

The event is designed for all ages and will be located outside the Children’s Room, near the Faerie Garden. Masks are recommended. In the event of rain, the event will be held via Zoom. For updates on event location, visit the library’s website or Facebook page. The event is free and wheelchair accessible. Kennebunk Free Library is located at 112 Main St., Kennebunk. For more information, call 985-2173.

Outdoor story times continue

Outdoor story times will continue October. The library will take a short break for the first two weeks of the month. Most Mondays at 10 a.m., story times will be held outside. Join Miss Maria for songs and stories. Participants are asked to bring a blanket or towel to sit on. In the event of rain, story time will be held on Facebook Live.

The location of story time will be announced by 8 a.m. on Monday morning, and will be shared on the library’s Facebook page and website. Masks are strongly recommended. The events are free and wheelchair accessible. Upcoming story times: Oct. 18 and Oct. 25.


Maine Sock Hop Rock ‘n’ Roll Dance Party planned

The Maine Classic Car Museum in Arundel will host The Maine Sock Hop Rock ‘n’ Roll Dance Party on Saturday, Oct. 9. Dan King photo

The Maine Classic Car Museum will host The Maine Sock Hop Rock ‘n’ Roll Dance Party on Saturday, Oct. 9. The event runs from 7 to 10 p.m. The Maine Classic Car Museum is located at 2564 Portland Road (Route 1) in Arundel.

According to a Sept. 27 news release, “The evening will feature performances by Hope Farm Theater amongst the world-class car collection. Sip a signature cocktail and indulge at our dessert bar. Vintage ’50s attire is welcomed and Best Dressed prizes will be awarded. Come dance the night away with us.”

“Tickets are $75 per person and available on Eventbrite or through the museum, ” said Peter Farrell, event manager, in an email. “Check out this first time event at the Maine Classic Car Museum. Enjoy a perfect date night out with your sweetheart and dance the night away to some of the best music of the ‘50s and ‘60s. Wear your favorite fashions from that time era and you may win a prize.”

Tickets include: one cocktail, one dessert and museum admission for the performances. For more information or to purchase tickets, contact Farrell at 207-550-7199 or

According to the release, the Maine Classic Car Museum features 50 of the world’s finest motorcars, including a Tucker, President Roosevelt’s Packard and Doc Hudson, the Fabulous Hudson Hornet. There’s also a museum store, a courtyard picnic area and space to rent for events.


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