The Brick Store Museum has achieved re-accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums, the highest national recognition afforded the nation’s museums. Accreditation signifies excellence to the museum community, to governments, funders, outside agencies, and to the museum-going public. All museums must undergo a reaccreditation review at least every 10 years to maintain accredited status.

The Brick Store Museum has achieved re-accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums, the highest national recognition afforded the nation’s museums. Dan King photo

Alliance Accreditation brings national recognition to a museum for its commitment to excellence, accountability, high professional standards and continued institutional improvement. Developed and sustained by museum professionals for 50 years, the Alliance’s museum accreditation program is the field’s primary vehicle for quality assurance, self-regulation and public accountability. It strengthens the museum profession by promoting practices that enable leaders to make informed decisions, allocate resources wisely, and remain financially and ethically accountable in order to provide the best possible service to the public.

“We are incredibly proud to earn re-accreditation,” Brick Store Museum Director Cynthia Walker said in an email. “This is the culmination of years of work here at the Brick Store Museum to sustain this place for future generations of learners and community members. We’re thrilled that our work resonated with AAM’s review committee.”

Of the nation’s estimated 33,000 museums, over 1,080 are currently accredited. The Brick Store Museum is one of only 17 museums accredited in Maine. In its budget size, only 8 percent of museums across the nation are accredited.

“Accredited museums are a community of institutions that have chosen to hold themselves publicly accountable to excellence,” said Laura L. Lott, Alliance President and CEO. “Accreditation is clearly a significant achievement, of which both the institutions and the communities they serve can be extremely proud.”

The Brick Store Museum was founded in 1936 by American artist Edith Barry, as a center for local history, art and cultures. The museum is open year-round, every day except Monday. For daily hours, visit or call (207)985-4802. Its current exhibitions include “The Great State of Illustration in Maine,” in curatorial partnership with Illustration Institute of Portland, Maine.


York County Republican Committee schedules meeting

The York County Republican Committee monthly meeting will be held Wednesday, Dec. 14 at Alfred Town Hall, 16 Saco Road. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The business meeting is scheduled for 7 to 8:30 p.m. and will focus on the election of York County Republican Committee officers for 2023-24.

Carol Lombard of Southern York County Toys for Tots will be on hand to accept all donations collected previously and at the meeting. Nonperishable food items will also be collected for a Christmas donation to a local food pantry. All Republicans are invited and York County Republican Committee delegates are urged to attend to vote in the officer elections.

For more information or to be added to committee email list, call 207-468-2395 or email [email protected]

Holiday program focuses on immigrant stories

The Brick Store Museum’s annual Holiday Candlelight Stroll, which tells the stories of local immigrants through reenactors, returns this year. The program occurs on two evenings: Saturday, Dec. 10 and Sunday, Dec. 11, featuring vignettes of each family as participants tour through the museum spaces.


The Brick Store Museum’s annual Holiday Candlelight Stroll tells the stories of local immigrants and is scheduled Saturday, Dec. 10 and Sunday, Dec. 11, Courtesy photo

Tours depart every 15 minutes and take about 45 minutes to tour museum spaces. The tours conclude in the museum’s Program Center with holiday treats, activities and live fiddle music by Paul and Sally Wells.

The program explores the stories and traditions of Kennebunk’s immigrant families.

Saturday, Dec. 10, will feature the stories of five families who immigrated in the 19th century; and Sunday, Dec. 11, will feature the stories of those who immigrated to town in the 20th century. Tickets can be purchased for one or both days.

Representatives (reenactors) from each family tell visitors about their personal stories and their holiday traditions, many of whom came to Kennebunk to work in the mill industry. The tour is $10 per person; free for those younger than age 12. A recorded virtual tour will premiere a week after the live version.

The Holiday Candlelight Stroll is presented by Mari Mattuchio Bookkeeping with additional support by BBsquared. H.M. Payson is underwriter of the museum’s holiday season of programming.

For more information about menus and featured families or to reserve tickets, visit


Wreath-laying ceremony planned at Arundel Cemetery

The Arundel Cemetery board is inviting the public to a wreath-laying ceremony at noon on Saturday, Dec. 17.

The board has partnered with Wreaths Across America to honor veterans by placing Christmas wreaths on their headstones.

Officials said more than 450 wreaths have been donated, assuring a wreath on every veteran’s grave at the cemetery, located at 4 Walkers Lane, Kennebunkport.

Last-Minute Shoppers Craft Fair announced

For the fifth year, the Last-Minute Shoppers Craft Fair will offer handmade gifts made by local residents. It will be held on Saturday, Dec. 17 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church on Main Street in Kennebunk.


The fair will feature a variety of crafts, including handmade soap and washcloths, jewelry, paintings, fused glass, hand-printed tea towels, T-shirts, and calendars, greeting cards, journals, pickles and jams, lavender pillows, handbags, baby treasures, and more.

Frinklepod Farm Cafe will offer snacks, drinks and lunch from local produce. It will be open form 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The fair will benefit Welcoming Immigrants Our New Neighbors, a local group that supports immigrants in Biddeford and Saco.

Lego Club meets at Kennebunk Free Library

Kennebunk Free Library is offering a Lego Club for children ages 4 and older. Lego Club will meet on Friday, Dec. 30, from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m. Come and build new and imaginative creations or ask the librarian for a challenge to complete. All Lego blocks will be supplied. Participants are asked to leave personal Legos at home. Registration is appreciated.

Lego Club is free and wheelchair accessible. For more information or to register, call 985-2173, ext. 108 or visit


Tech Time slated for Tuesdays and Wednesdays

To sign up for one of Kennebunk Free Library’s Tech Time appointments, visit the front desk to be placed on the scheduling sheet. Appointments to meet 1-on-1 with the technology educator can be scheduled Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 2 to 4 p.m.

Appointments are 45 minutes long, but there is always an opportunity to schedule a follow-up appointment. When setting up the appointment, describe the issue to be addressed. If possible, also make sure to bring the charged device with along with usernames and passwords.

For more information, visit the front desk, call 207-985-2173, or email the technology educator at [email protected]

Graves Library plans holiday activities

Graves Library will host Cookies, Cider and Cellar on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Visitors are invited to the library on Maine Street in Kennebunkport for holiday shopping.


The Book Cellar is stocked with new and gently used books, puzzles, note cards, mugs, hats, CDs and more. Visitors are encouraged to find a gift for a swap, host or hostess, or lovers of all things Kennebunkport, including the two-volume set of the “History of Kennebunkport,” by local resident and historian, Joyce Butler. Drop in on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for cookies and cider.

The library is open Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and is located at 18 Maine St.

Story Time with Mrs. Claus is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 16 from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Mrs. Claus will read holiday stories to  friends and families. She will arrive with lights flashing. The event features songs and treats, too.

For more information, call 207-967-2778 or visit

Waterhouse Center skate swap is Dec. 10

A Skate Swap will be held at the Waterhouse Center in Kennebunk on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Participants should bring ice skates to swap only (11 a.m. to noon) and swap or purchase (noon to 1 p.m.) for a minimum donation of $10. One pair per person with priority given to children.

Also, if those with new or gently used ice skates to donate can call 207-604-1326 for more information.

Teen mystery badge bundles available at library

Students looking for new pins to decorate coats, bookbags, can visit Kennebunk Free Library starting Dec. 9 at 9:30 a.m., when mystery badge bundles will be available in the Teen Room (Walker Room). Filled with pins featuring Pokemon characters, Kermit the Frog, Animals on Computers, and all sorts of other things, the bundles are a surprise for the holiday season. Available while bundles last. The mystery bundle pick-up event is free, wheelchair accessible, and open to teens ages 10 and older. For more information,, see Miss Emmaline in the Children’s Room, or call at 207-985-2173.

Funky Divas of Gospel Christmas concert at Church on the Cape

The Keith McClelland Community Music Foundation will host The Funky Divas of Gospel for a free concert at Church on the Cape, 3 Langsford Road, Cape Porpoise, Kennebunkport, on Saturday Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.


The one-hour Christmas show of familiar holiday songs and carols combines the musicianship and vocal harmonies for which they are known, with traditional and nostalgic music of the season.

The group of seven features three seacoast area singers Diane Arabian, Carolyn Hutton, and Vicky Poland backed up by the Funky band: Dan Poland on guitar and vocals, Tom Kesel on bass, Pete Leavenworth playing pedal steel, dobro, and banjo, and Sean Haney percussionist.

Funky Divas performances are suitable for all ages. They regularly perform in music festivals, outdoor summer events, benefits, and church services of all denominations. For more Divas information visit or find them on Facebook at

Church on the Cape is wheelchair accessible. Parking is available on Langsford Road, and behind Bradbury Brothers Market, 167 Main St., Kennebunkport.

The Keith McClelland Community Music Foundation is dedicated to encouraging, sponsoring, and supporting the performance and appreciation of music in the Kennebunks. It is named in memory of Keith McClelland, beloved music educator in the local schools, director of multiple choirs, and organist at Church on the Cape and South Congregational Church.

For more information, email [email protected]


Kennebunk Free Library announces upcoming activities

It’s time for Story time. On Mondays at 10 a.m., join Miss Maria inside the library for songs, stories and rhymes. Story times are designed for ages 2-5, but everyone is welcome. The events are free and wheelchair accessible.

Upcoming story time dates include: Dec. 5, Dec. 12 and Dec. 19.

Chill Gaming: Ready to chill, eat snacks, and play some games? Come hang out with friends, test out gaming card decks, play on the library’s Nintendo Switch, try out new RPG board games, or anything else in between for Chill Gaming. Because of the holiday break, the group will meet on Thursday, Dec. 8 and Dec. 22 from 3:30  to 4:30 p.m.

There will be games provided by the library, but players are free to bring their own games, learn new games at their own pace, or just hang out and listen to some lofi beats. The event is free, wheelchair accessible, and open to teens ages 10 and older. For more information, see Miss Emmaline in the Children’s Room, or call at 207-985-2173.

Gingerbread person kits: December’s STEAM Kit from Kennebunk Free Library has a sweet twist. During the month of December, the library will have all the supplies needed to decorate a gingerbread person. Kits will be available starting Thursday, Dec. 1, and will be available while supplies last. Decorating a gingerbread person encourages spatial visualization, problem solving and artistic creativity. Each kit will include a gingerbread person, icing, and some candies for decorating. Participants are encouraged to take a picture of the creation and email to [email protected] The library will create a virtual display with the photos.


Jeff Snow Courtesy photo

Celtic Christmas: On Wednesday, Dec. 14 at 6:30 p.m., Kennebunk Free Library will host A Gathering of Celtic and Christmas – songs and stories by performer Jeff Snow. The event will feature a fire with wine and light refreshments served.

Snow is a multi-instrumentalist who shares the music, and the stories behind the music, of Scotland, Ireland and England.

Growing up in a home where old Scottish folk songs were the everyday sounds, Jeff developed an early love for Celtic music. Much of the history of these lands was preserved in song. Patrons will see singing, laughing, lots of smiles and perhaps a few tears as they travel through time.

In concert Snow plays the guitar, autoharp and bouzouki. He can also find his way around a drum set and most of the percussion family. He is a private guitar teacher and the author of the teaching method Guitar Basics and Beyond. He was featured in the December 2006 issue of Acoustic Guitar Magazine and is a contributing writer for Acoustic Guitar and Autoharp Quarterly magazines.

When not singing, playing, or teaching Snow can often be found taking photographs, on a golf course or a beach.

For more information, call 207-985-2173 or email [email protected]


December exhibit features ‘Student Images’

Kennebunk Free Library announced its next Speers Gallery exhibit, Student Images, featuring photographs by students around the world facilitated by Picture Pals, an organization co-founded by Kennebunkport residents Lorraine and Paul Star and their lifelong friend Joe Highland, who “has dedicated his life to helping others to have a better future.”

According to a Nov. 17 news release, “After retiring from teaching, Paul and Lorraine, who are avid photographers and travelers, decided it was time to give back. Through Picture Plans, they offer photography workshops for youth in low resource and underserved communities throughout the world.”

The exhibit will showcase Picture Plans student work produced during workshops in Mexico, Afghanistan, India, Nepal, Cambodia, Liberia, and the Cherokee Nation.

The students who took the photographs are between ages 15-18 and, previous to Picture Pals, had no formal training in photography. According to Paul, the students “embraced the camera and the photography courses. They prepared themselves to give the world a glimpse into their soul.”

The exhibit runs through Dec. 31, and the public is invited to a reception on Wednesday, Dec. 14 from 5 to 7 p.m.


The public is invited to view the exhibit in the library’s Speers Gallery at 112 Main St., Kennebunk, during regular library hours when the gallery is not in use for library programs. For current hours and gallery access, visit

Wells Chamber to host 37th annual Christmas Parade

The crowd in Kennebunkport’s Dock Square awaits the tree lighting on Friday, Dec. 2. Doug Worthing photo

Wells Chamber of Commerce announced that its 37th annual Christmas Parade is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 11. The parade steps off at 2 p.m. from Wells Plaza and proceeds north on Route 1 to Wells Junior High School.

The Primary Event Sponsor is Kennebunk Savings, Silver Sponsors are Avita of Wells and DF Richard Energy. Bronze Sponsor is the Rotary Club of Wells.

The grand marshal for the parade will be Wells resident Kathy Wright. Kathy is a graduate of Wells High School, was the secretary/office manager for the Wells Chamber and Wells Information Center from 1984-1988, served on the Wells Board of Selectmen and was the coordinator of the Wells Christmas Parade for 21 years.

There will be cookies and cocoa to be had the day of the parade – Coldwell Banker Realty in Kennebunk will serve at the starting point and York Hospital will be in front of the junior high school gymnasium at the conclusion of the parade.


Holiday Showcase premieres at museum

The Brick Store Museum’s annual Holiday Showcase pays homage to the region’s independent artists and creators. Holiday Showcase is a month-long event inside the museum’s galleries that features the works of artists and crafters. The showcase  ends Tuesday, Dec. 21.

The switch is flipped and the Dock Square Christmas tree glows. Doug Worthing photo

During the entire month, admission to the museum will be free courtesy of sponsor H.M. Payson, as a holiday gift to the communities. Visitors will be able to visit the museum’s newest exhibitions and shop for locally-made gifts and artwork supporting both individual artists in York County and the Brick Store Museum’s educational mission in the community.

The museum also has an option for those not comfortable coming indoors during the pandemic – artwork and special pieces will be featured on the museum’s social media feeds and via its new online store, the Museum Mercantile, which can be found at

The Holiday Showcase is open anytime the museum is open (closed only Mondays). More information can be found at, or at the museum’s front desk at 117 Main St. in Kennebunk.

More than 20 regional artists have joined the showcase to display paper art, jewelry, basketry, custom drawings, sculpture, fiber and textile works, photography, handmade soaps and sachets, candles, accessories, wood carvings and more.


Elder Elves holiday gift program is underway

The Center is once again in full holiday swing, preparing for its community support program, Elder Elves.

The Elder Elves are a group of volunteers who assemble gift bags for seniors in the community who are isolated during the holidays. They solicit donations from businesses and the community to ensure that everyone can have a happy holiday season. The Elder Elves have been operating for 20-plus years and assemble 70 bags each year.

Members of the community are invited to stop by the Center during business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.) and pick up a gift tag from the Elder Elves giving tree. There is also an Elder Elves giving tree at Kennebunk Savings Bank on Western Avenue in Lower Village Kennebunk. All gifts must be returned by Nov. 30.

The Center works with the general assistance programs in Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, and Arundel as well as several other community outreach groups, to determine which senior residents would benefit from this program.

The Center is a meeting place for adults 50 and older to explore their interests through programs, social connection and to make a difference through volunteer opportunities that strengthen the community. For more information,  visit, on social media @CenterKennebunk, call 207-967-8514, or visit 175 Port Road in Kennebunk.

Maine illustrators on view at museum

The Brick Store Museum announced its newest exhibition, The Great State of Illustration in Maine, in collaboration with Illustration Institute, is on view through February. The exhibit features more than 80 historic and contemporary illustrators who call Maine home.

Maine illustrators in the exhibition include Dahlov Ipcar, Ashley Bryan, Barbara Cooney, NC Wyeth, Rockwell Kent, Edward Hopper and Francis Hamabe. Current illustrators such as Matt Tavares, Chris van Dusen, Melissa Sweet, Scott Nash, Nancy Gibson-Nash, Stephen Costanza, Tim Sample, and Wade Zahares have also shared work that adorn four full galleries of artwork to illustrate the work of Maine illustrators.

Cynthia Fitzmorris photo

Cynthia Fitzmorris photo

Cynthia Fitzmorris photo

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