Town & Country Federal Credit Union has begun accepting nominations for its Better Neighbor Fund. The credit union is in its 12th year of awarding funds to nonprofits in Cumberland and York counties. Nominations to fill the 25 nonprofits who will move forward to participate in online voting in October opened on Sept. 1.

Town & Country Federal Credit Union has begun accepting nominations for its Better Neighbor Fund. To nominate an organization for the Better Neighbor Fund, visit and click on click on community events. Courtesy image

Since 2010, Town & Country has awarded $325,000 to nearly 100 nonprofits through the Better Neighbor Fund initiative.

“While several financial institutions now offer grants to nonprofits through a nomination process, Town & Country was the first to start this type of program and we are proud that this has helped to, ultimately, deliver more funds to nonprofits,” said Dave Libby, president and CEO of Town & Country FCU, in a Sept. 7 news release. “The impact that our Better Neighbor Fund grants has had on organizations in the past 12 years has been significant and we are excited at the impact that this year’s grants will have on area nonprofits. Our Better Neighbor Fund is part of our larger Local Helping Loca’ initiative and our commitment to supporting our neighborhoods and communities through organizations that make a difference.”

The nomination process is open to nonprofits that are a designated 501(c)(3) organization and are headquartered and serve Cumberland and/or York counties. Anyone can nominate a deserving nonprofit including the nonprofit itself. The first 25 nonprofits nominated that meet eligibility requirements will then participate in an online vote during the month of October.

The credit union will award a total of $25,000 in grants to the eight organizations with the most votes in grants ranging from $2,000 to $5,000.

“Nonprofits continue to face challenges with funds and support so the need remains great,” said Jon Paradise, senior vice president of communications, Marketing and Community Outreach, in an email. “These organizations provide important roles in our communities, from basic needs to nonprofits that enrich where we live through arts and entertainment. There are such a wide range of non-profits that make a difference to different people so our Better Neighbor Fund is a great way for our community to highlight some organizations that are special to them.”


To nominate an organization for the Better Neighbor Fund, visit and click on click on community events.

South Portland native among first Peace Corps volunteers to return to service overseas

Eckerd College alum and South Portland resident Sofia McNally is among the first Peace Corps volunteers to return to overseas service since the agency’s unprecedented global evacuation in March 2020. The Peace Corps suspended global operations and evacuated nearly 7,000 volunteers from more than 60 countries at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I hope to gain a broader sense of global citizenship and the problems facing our planet and all people,” said McNally in an email. “I’m looking forward to exploring a new place and learning new languages and customs.”

McNally graduated from Eckerd in 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in marine science. She will serve as an agriculture volunteer in Paraguay.

“The world is at a critical juncture,” said Peace Corps CEO Carol Spahn in a Sept. 6 press release. “The largest global vaccination effort in history is underway while other widespread health, social, political, and environmental issues continue to erode the foundation of our global society. Actions taken in the next few years have the potential to fundamentally impact development trajectories for decades to come. Peace Corps volunteers returning to Paraguay will work alongside community members to support urgent development efforts and build critical connections.”


The volunteer cohorts are made up of both first-time volunteers and volunteers who were evacuated in early 2020. Upon finishing a three-month training, volunteers will collaborate with their host communities on locally prioritized projects in one of Peace Corps’ six sectors – agriculture, community economic development, education, environment, health or youth in development – and all will engage in COVID-19 response and recovery work.

The agency is recruiting volunteers to serve in 48 countries around the world at the request of host country governments, to connect through the Peace Corps’ grassroots approach across communities and cultures. Volunteers have already returned to a total of 23 countries around the world. The Peace Corps continues to monitor COVID-19 trends in all of its host countries and will send volunteers to serve as conditions permit.

Americans interested in service and lifelong connections can apply to Peace Corps service at

Moe’s Original Bar-B-Q to cater church fundraiser

First Congregational Church of Scarborough will offer its sixth annual public dinner catered by Moe’s Original Bar-B-Q on Wednesday, Sept. 21, starting at 5 p.m. The church is located at 167 Black Point Road in Scarborough.

This year’s event will be held on an all-take-out basis. There will be no inside dining and the event will be held rain or shine. Vehicles will be directed inside the church parking lot. Payment will be made in cash only. The cost will be $14 for all meals. Meals will be handed to an occupant of the vehicle, starting at 5 p.m.


Meals will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis until food runs out. The menu features pulled pork and barbecue sauce, baked beans, potato salad, cucumber/tomato salad, and cornbread. The meals will all be the same and will be boxed by church members who will adhere to all food handling and sanitary precautions.

The dinner is a fundraiser sponsored by the church’s Men’s Fellowship.

Holy Cross School alumni weekend is Sept. 24-25

All alumni of Holy Cross School in South Portland are encouraged to gather together fat an alumni celebration set for Sept. 24-25. The schedule:

Saturday, Sept. 24

Alumni will gather at Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for a day of fun family activities and opportunities to reunite with old friends and teachers and reminisce about their Holy Cross experience. At 4 p.m., an alumni celebration Mass will be held at Holy Cross Church at 124 Cottage Road in South Portland. Following the Mass, all are invited to attend an open house and reception at the school itself across the street from the church.


Sunday, Sept. 25

The Autumn N’ Ales 5K/10K/Half Marathon Road Race is set for the American Legion Post in Scarborough with all proceeds from the race benefitting Holy Cross School. The event is being organized by MEND Health of Maine, a Holy Cross family business located in Scarborough. To register or for more information about the race, visit

To help sponsor the event or to make a donation, email

Oldies Dance returns in October

The 19th Rock n’ Roll Oldies Benefit Dance will be held from 7 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Oct. 15 at the Eagles Hall in Biddeford. For tickets, call 207-284-4692.  Courtesy photo

The 20th edition of the Oldies Dance benefit will be held from 7 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Oct. 15 at the Eagles Hall, 57 Birch St., in Biddeford and is the largest community fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House of Portland. Tickets are $10 with proceeds donated to the Ronald McDonald House, which provides comfort for the families of pediatric patients and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children and enables family centered care to ensure that family members are fully supported and actively involved in their child’s care.

Oldies Dance Group organizer Bruce Martin said that to date, the organization has raised $85,500 for Ronald McDonald House and recommends that anyone interested in attending the dance to act fast as tickets sell out quickly with seating limited.


“I’m constantly amazed at how quickly these tickets sell,” Martin said in a Sept. 5 news release. “It’s confirmation that people still love to dance, and they love to listen to classic rock n’ roll oldies music. We can only accommodate about 300 people at each of these dances, so I strongly encourage anyone who is interested in attending to call and get their tickets as soon as possible.”

According to Martin, the Oldies Dance Group sold 349 tickets to its May 7 dance in just 10 days and had to turn away 82 additional requests for tickets because of seating limitations.

“Without a doubt, the most popular song at every dance is ‘Unchained Melody’ by the Righteous Brothers,” Martin said. “Even guys who don’t normally dance get up and are out on the dance floor that one. The music is fantastic and takes you back to a simpler time where you know all the words to the songs by heart and the beat is contagious and makes you want to get up and express yourself through dancing. Those memorable Motown hits and anything we play by Elvis Presley ensure the dance floor will be packed.”

The bottom line though is that each Oldies Dance is highly affordable and raises money in a fun way to support the important work that the staff of the Ronald McDonald House in Portland is doing, he said.

To purchase tickets for the October dance or for more information, call Bruce Martin at 207-284-4692.

Library to host history of coastal Maine session


Colin Woodard will discuss his new book, “The Lobster Coast: The past, present, and future of coastal Maine” at the Main Library location of the South Portland Public Library on Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 6:30 p.m. Woodard is a New York Times bestselling author, historian and journalist

Colin Woodard Courtesy photo

There is no admission fee for the event, presented in partnership with the Maine Humanities Council and the Friends of the South Portland Public Library, as part of its ongoing celebration of Maine’s bicentennial.

South Portland’s Nonesuch Books will be on hand with copies of Woodard books, including “American Nations, American Character,” “The Lobster Coast,” “The Republic of Pirates,” “Ocean’s End and Union: The Struggle to Forge the Story of United States Nationhood,” available for sale.

According to a library news release,  in Woodard’s latest book,”The Lobster Coast,” he shares the backstory of Maine, a harrowing and little understood saga of war and betrayal, of clashing empires and ethnic cleansing, of civil war and colonial occupation by Massachusetts of what had been a separate province. These events shaped Mainers as a people and explain some of the culture’s most impressive virtues and most frustrating faults, as well as the still fraught relationship between this land’s real natives and the rest of us whose families came “from away” at some point in the past four hundred years.”

Woodard is a New York Times bestselling author, historian, and journalist who has reported from more than 50 countries and seven continents. A longtime foreign correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor and the San Francisco Chronicle, he is state and national affairs writer at the Portland Press Herald, where he received a 2012 George Polk Award and was a finalist a 2016 Pulitzer Prize. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Washington Post, The Economist, Smithsonian, Politico and dozens of other publications. A visiting senior fellow at the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina University, he lives in Freeport.

Safe House was recently notified they had been awarded three Purple Ribbon Awards from The Purple Ribbon Awards are the first comprehensive awards program honoring the countless heroes of the domestic violence movement, including advocates, programs, shelters, survivors and members of the community support system. Safe House was selected for three Purple Ribbons Awards in the categories of Outstanding National Organization, Outstanding New Service Launch, and Program or Service of the Year. Safe House could be selected to receive a portion of $30,000 in grant money at the Purple Ribbon Award Ceremony on Sept. 21. For more information, visit Courtesy photo

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