Brunswick resident Tiffany Jones was one of nine women nationwide to win a $12,500 cash award last month from Grape-Nuts cereal to pay for her cancer awareness climb up Mount Kilimanjaro in East Africa this July.

Tiffany Jones of Brunswick was awarded $12,500 from Grape-Nuts cereal last month to fund her upcoming climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro to raise cancer awareness. Photo courtesy of Tiffany Jones

Grape-Nuts celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, and wanted to commemorate the milestone by awarding cash to female explorers raising money on GoFundMe for worthy trips later this year. “Throughout history, Grape-Nuts has inspired modern-day pioneers to rise up and make history,” Lauren Jamnick, Grape-Nuts’ associate brand manager, said in a prepared statement. “One hundred and twenty-five years later, I’m thrilled to say that we’re still fueling adventures – and now we’re even breaking glass ceilings. We’re so proud to have fueled pioneering adventures from the likes of Admiral (Richard) Byrd in the past, but the opportunity to support female explorers as they take those first bold steps towards breaking new ground is truly an honor.”

Jones, 51, hasn’t climbed mountains before. But after losing both of her parents to cancer in recent years, and testing positive herself for a breast cancer mutation gene,  Jones connected online with expert mountaineer, motivational speaker and former cancer patient Sean Swarner, who regularly leads cancer survivors to Kilimanjaro’s 19,341-foot summit. After about 18 months of correspondence, Jones arranged to climb the mountain with Swarner over seven days this July.

The Grape-Nuts funding has covered the expense of her trip, Jones said. She’d raised about $1,500 for the climb on her own through GoFundMe in February and March, but when she checked her site page in early April, she saw a five-figure surprise from Grape-Nuts.

“I woke up one morning, and my GoFundMe was funded. At first, I thought it was a prank,” Jones said, adding that she was unaware of the cereal’s plan to award female climbers, and had not been contacted by the company beforehand. “But it was Grape-Nuts. I was in tears. Grape-Nuts was literally my dad’s favorite cereal. I took it as a powerful sign.”

Jones said after the Grape-Nuts funding, she extended her GoFundMe target goal from $10,000 to $20,000 so she can give donations to the cancer-focused Dempsey Center in Lewiston and the Hope Center, an orphanage at the base of Kilimanjaro. She has just over $13,000 in her GoFundMe account to date.


Jones has never climbed a mountain before. “This is not a typical thing for me to do. It’s definitely out of my comfort zone,” she said. “But you can’t say ‘someday’ forever, you have to try. If I can do this, anyone can.”


The Rwanda Bean Company announced late last month on social media that it will not be reopening its South Portland location.

The April 29 post on Rwanda Bean’s Facebook page states that its former 2,647-square-foot retail space at 185 Cottage St. is available for lease. The listing states that the space could be turned into another coffee shop or converted for a different use.

“After much contemplation, we have officially decided that we will not be reopening at our South Portland location,” Rwanda’s post says. The location had been closed for several months. “We remain immensely grateful for all the memories and stories shared over coffee through the years. We will miss our friendly neighbors and community on that side of the bridge.”

Rwanda’s roastery and espresso bar that opened on Thompson’s Point last year will remain open, as well as Rwanda Bean at Deering Center, the post stated.


Founder Mike Mwenedata launched Rwanda Bean in 2013, with the specific goal of helping coffee bean farmers in Rwanda. The company gives 50 percent of its profits to help pay for new Rwandan coffee farm equipment and health-care costs for Rwandan farmers.


Roll Call, a food truck specializing in sandwiches, plans to open a space in the Public Market House at 28 Monument Square in Portland on Friday.

Roll Call will be based in the former Big Sky Bakery stall at the market house, and be open Wednesdays through Fridays from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. for now, according to owner Siobhan Sindoni. She aims to have Roll Call open five days a week, eventually offering breakfast as well.

“We’ll just have to wait for that until we get staff lined up and trained,” Sindoni said.

For several months over the winter of 2020-21, Roll Call had a brick-and-mortar location at 81 Clark St., next to the former Little Giant. Sindoni said that the space was a temporary home necessitated by the pandemic, and did not allow for indoor seating. Roll Call has operated as a food truck since leaving Clark Street.


“The setting up and breaking down of a food truck is for young people. There’s just something about having a permanent space,” said Sindoni, who also opened the Wayside Tavern in Parkside with her husband, Michael, last July.

Sindoni said she’d like to keep the food truck going after Roll Call opens in the Public Market House. “If we can manage it, we will. But labor is a deciding factor,” she said, adding that the truck probably won’t stop operating, but will make far fewer appearances than it did last year.


Luke’s Lobster has teamed with Omsom, a premade packaged sauce company, to offer a Spicy Mala Lobster Roll using Omsom sauce at all Luke’s locations starting this month.

The collaboration was set up to honor Asian American and Pacific Islander month. Officials from both companies said $1 of each lobster roll sale during the month of May will be donated to the Immigrant History Initiative.

Luke’s online market also will offer an “Omsom Lobster Tail” pack that includes a Luke’s Lobster Tail Pack of four (5-6 oz) tails, Omsom’s Chinese Mala sauce, and a recipe card for Lobster Tail Mala Salad for $120. A portion of the tail pack proceeds from May also will go to the Immigrant History Initiative.



The Huot’s Seafood at Camp Ellis Beach in Saco, a local institution since 1935, was sold recently to a new ownership team and will reopen for the season on Friday.

The new ownership team of Huot’s Seafood in Saco, from left, Sean Walker, Ian Flanagan, Jonathan Corpina and Alan Waugh. The team bought the landmark restaurant last month. Photo courtesy of Jonathan Corpina

Huot’s had been a family business for three generations. Owners Denise Huot Gelinas and Gerry Gelinas have run the restaurant since 1999, before announcing on Facebook the sale last month (for an undisclosed sum) to a team of partners with long-standing roots in Saco’s Ferry Beach.

The new ownership team includes Saco native Sean Walker, Ferry Beach summer resident Alan Waugh, as well as Ian Flanagan and Jonathan Corpina, who’ve each been Ferry Beach seasonal residents for decades. The team also includes Robbie Gillin, a veteran New York restaurant owner/operator.

The new owners stated on Facebook that they have no plans to change the food at Huot’s, because “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

“As evident by the blood, sweat and tears that Gerry and Denise poured into Huot’s, there is absolutely nothing broken here,” the new team’s Facebook post states. “From the Clam Cakes and Baked Haddock to the Scallops and Onion Rings, we will be following the same family recipes that have made Huot’s a big part of the Camp Ellis Community and New England for the past 87 years.”


Il Leone, the wood-fired pizzeria on Peaks Island, will reopen for its second season on Friday, according to its website.

The casual seasonal restaurant located on a woodsy lot owned by the Peaks Island Lion’s Club is entirely outdoors, with seating at about 10 picnic tables. Il Leone’s Instagram page said its hours for this coming opening weekend are 4:30-8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. and 4:30-8 p.m.

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