Thursday, October 13, 2016

maine matters VOTES NO on Question 3

Press Release

October 11, 2016

Question 3: Maine Warden Service has concerns regarding referendum question.

The Maine Warden Service, the law enforcement bureau of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, is concerned that Question 3, if approved by the voters, will have negative impacts on some individuals who hunt and trap in Maine. Most importantly, this ballot question is written in such a way that it will be difficult—if not impossible—for Wardens to enforce.

Question 3 will require background checks for firearms sales and transfers and includes criminal penalties for those who do not follow the new law. It could make criminals out of responsible firearm owners. For example, the law will make it far more difficult for two hunters who have no criminal records and are legally entitled by law to possess firearms to share or loan their firearm to other legal hunters who are not prohibited from possessing firearms.

Loaning a firearm has been a common practice in apprenticeship and youth hunting for generations of Mainers, especially for those considering getting into the sport of hunting but who are not yet ready to purchase their own firearms.

There are only limited exceptions in the law. One exception allows a transfer between certain family members without a background check. Another exception allows a hunter to transfer a firearm to another hunter only for a “temporary” period of time and only if the transferee is in the “actual presence” of the transferor. This exception also requires the transferee to possess the gun exclusively in areas where hunting is legal.

The Warden Service also has concerns about the enforcement of Question 3. It would be difficult for a law enforcement officer to prove actual ownership and where the transfer occurred unless the transfer was actually observed by the officer. A routine interaction with a hunter would not generate that line of questioning unless there was reasonable suspicion that an illegal transfer had taken place.

Maine is well known for its hunting and trapping opportunities. These sports create jobs for Maine citizens and attract enthusiasts from around the world. The Maine Warden Service encourages Maine citizens to carefully consider the effects that Questions 3 will have on our outdoor heritage.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


     Living in Belfast has become quite trendy, at least compared to the old days of shoe factories and poultry plants. Belfast has become known as a cruise ship destination, a boutique town, artsy, ... cultivated. 

     Of course it wasn't always that way, far from it. But one constant that was here through the "bad" times and now during the "enlightened" times, was and is The Belfast City Park. 

     I can say this because I've lived it.  I've been a Belfast resident for 63 of my 67 years. (The "away" years being devoted to earning a degree in Massachusetts.)  So I think I can speak with some authority on the subject.                                  

     Being situated on High St., which is actually old U.S. Rt. 1, (BBP..before the by-pass),  the park was established in 1904 and consists of 17.5 acres of land that gently drops down to the shore of Belfast Bay. The first things that you'll see going thru the wrought iron gates is a memorial dedicated to our veterans and the old baseball field that has seen many a Little League Game.

Along the gravel driveway and dirt paths there are signs describing many of the trees in the arboretum that have been planted by future thinking citizens (both past and present),  including this venerable horse chestnut.

    The tennis courts, swimming pool and playground are not far away and are very actively used.

     To the left is a common ground once home to the Annual Belfast Broiler Festival. Over the years many thousands of festival goers were served up delicious chicken, grilled over tons of charcoal that was enclosed in cinder block pits. A grand time was had by all.

     To the right is a parking lot and horseshoe pit area that was the location of the old park pool. I spent many a summer day swimming and playing in the old pool and lounging on beach towels with my friends on the banked lawns overlooking it and the bay.

     Speaking of which..often times we would search for shade in the pavilion or head down to the shore for a swim.  Many kids would walk the shoreline back to town to their homes on Bayview or Union Streets. Which in those days may not have been an easy task given the slicks of chicken fat that layered the rocks after the tide had dropped. But we took it all in was just the way it was..

     Coming back up the looped, park road you'll pass the basketball and pickle ball courts as well as some newly installed outdoors fitness benches.  Years ago there was some discussion about paving the road but it never happened as a lot of people were concerned that a paved road would encourage drivers to go too fast. 

 Personally I'm glad the gravel has stayed as a reminder, at least to me, of the slower paced days of my childhood.

So if you're in town attending one of the many festivities that we now celebrate, take a tour of our park. Stretch your legs, stroll in the shade of the old trees on one of the walking paths, sit on a bench, get a bite to eat at the concession stand,  take a walk along the shore.  
Or maybe use one of the charcoal grills and throw on some chicken...

If you do I think you'll agree that Belfast City Park is one of the gems of our little city.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Out And About...

 Waterfront Tenants Harbor
 Boat Ramp .. Looks a little tricky..
 Some vessels in and around the harbor...
 Lobster impoundment...
Atwood's Quarry...

We decided to take advantage of the beautiful weather that we've been having here on the coast of Maine and head down (my apologies to "Downeast" ) the shoreline, ending up in Tenant's Harbor.

Located in St. George , on a peninsula, TH is a small, tucked away harbor that still has a good mix of fishermen intermingled with pleasure boaters.  It's a bit off the Rt. 1 beaten path and therefore still has the old time Maine flavor to it.

The boat ramp looked a little tricky to me so if we were going to do some cruising in that area we would probably opt for launching in Rockland which is just "up" the coast. With it's fjord-like geography that part of the Maine coast would lend itself to lots of exploring and rubber-necking.

There's lots of history to discover in and around TH including taking a peek at Atwood's Quarry and a lobster impoundment nearby.

It's so nice to have such beautiful Maine spots in our backyard..
truly a pleasure..

Sunday, July 10, 2016


Wood stove..single malt..12ga semi..dusting of snow..
It's just about perfect...

Image and title stolen from...

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Sunday, November 8, 2015

And Now..Moving On Without Andre

Coming off the heels of losing Ray last June, this morning is truly a BITTERsweet moment for me..another one of our big yellow boys, Andre, is leaving us.

However in this case he is off to Guiding Eyes For The Blind in Yorktown Heights New York where we hope he will start a new chapter in his life,   We'll know on Tuesday as that's  when he takes his guide dog school entrance exam. Fingers crossed...I guess..

Seeing him go in for training is especially difficult on me, more than the others we've sent off, with the exception of Big Ray.  Andre is such wonderful dog and so closely associated for me with Ray, his absence in our home will be a huge void.  But we of course wish Andre the best, with high hopes that he will become a life changing addition to a blind person's life.

I have no way of knowing if our paths will ever cross again but Andre has certainly left a profound and enduring mark on my life..

Good luck and thank you Andre...