Ashland area youth complete fire attack school

16 years ago

    Marcus Belanger of Portage and Aaron McLellan of Sheridan recently completed Junior Firefighter training. The course, which started in July, was held at the Presque Isle fire station once a week for three hours. In addition to classroom work, Belanger and McLellan visited many fire stations throughout the county studying and putting into practice what they were learning.

    Upon completion of the class, a graduation ceremony and meal was held at the Presque Isle Fire Department with 192 friends, family and fire personnel in attendance. All 19 students enrolled in the course were presented with certificates of completion by the fire chief that sponsored them. Some of the participants received their individual pagers and radios, as well. After the presentations, everyone enjoyed a huge cake, made by Roberta Belanger, that had all of the graduates’ pictures on it.
Operation Christmas Child
    For the past several weeks, students at Ashland Central School have been busy working on a very rewarding project called Operation Christmas Child. Each classroom collected items to be sent to boys and girls who might not otherwise receive anything for Christmas. The students filled a total of 39 shoeboxes, which were taken to a collection site in Presque Isle and then trucked to Boone, N.C. Samaritan’s Purse, an organization located there, will then distribute the boxes to children from many different walks of life, all over the world.
    Since its inception in 1993, Operation Christmas Child has delivered more than 61 million gift-filled boxes, and organizers for the project at Ashland Central were proud to be a part of the gift-giving efforts this year.
    Ashland kindergarten teacher Kim Haines was impressed with the enthusiasm shown by the students, stating that it was very touching to see some of our children dig into their piggy banks to help those far less fortunate. Kim would like to thank family and community members who assisted in other ways to help make this project a huge success, as well. It is her hope that Operation Christmas Child will continue at Ashland Central for years to come.
Ski Club ready and anxious for new season
    The Ashland Area Cross Country Ski Club has been busy getting the ski trails ready for the blanket of snow that we know must soon be coming. Once again there will be groomed trails for your skiing pleasure at Ed and Marilyn Chase’s in Garfield Plantation and at the Aroostook Ski Touring Center at Ed and Anna Ouellet’s in Wrightville.
    This year, students in kindergarten through grade eight rented 43 pairs of skis. Many of the children are repeat skiers and we have picked up some new children that are anticipating zooming down the trails. We will be skiing every Thursday afternoon beginning after the Christmas break; however, the trails will be groomed for skiing before that date providing we have the snow coverage.
    If you would like to assist the club in any way, please contact Kim Haines at 435-6576 or Linda Milligan at 227-9135.
Rabies clinic scheduled
    There will be a rabies clinic at the Masardis Town Office Saturday, Dec. 6 from 2-2:30 p.m. Pets from Masardis, Oxbow and Garfield only will receive this service.
Send an extra card this holiday season
    Receiving cards at Christmastime is very heartwarming. When doing your Christmas cards this year, consider sending one to a recovering American soldier. Including a short sentiment and wishing them well would be a wonderful gesture.
    Please send cards to: A Recovering American Soldier, c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 6900 Georgia Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20307-5001.
Local cookbooks for sale for gift giving
    Members of Tillikum Chapter 99, Order of the Eastern Star and the Portage Lake Centennial Committee worked hard this past summer to put together cookbooks. Tillikum’s is entitled, “Cooking With Love & Memories,” and can be purchased at the Ashland Food Mart, or from any Eastern Star member. Cost per book is $10. The Centennial Committee’s keepsake cookbook contains 390 recipes and can be purchased at the Portage Town Hall or from any committee member. Cost for the Centennial cookbook is $12 with all proceeds going to the Portage Centennial Celebration.
Memorial picnic tables for sale

    The Portage Lake Centennial Committee is still selling memorial picnic tables, which will be placed at the Pavilion in Portage. An application must be filled out, accompanied by a payment of $150 per table. Eagle Scout Andrew Libby is building the tables, and a portion of the cost will be donated back to the Ashland Area Boy Scouts. Please see Rena Belanger or Corrine Routhier for more information or an application.
Kids Club news
    Because of the Christmas holiday, Kids Club in Masardis will be held on the first and third Thursdays of this month (Dec. 4 and 18). The bus will leave the church at 5:30 p.m. and pick up those children who want to attend with the sessions beginning at 6:30 p.m. Please be sure to call Cindy or the Rev. Donnie Morton at 435-6983 to make arrangements.
Portage exercise group
    Providing there is enough interest, an exercise group would like to be started in Portage at the Town Hall. The class would meet on Mondays and would be free of charge. For more information, please contact Kim Holmes at 435-6043.
Project Graduation fund-raiser

    Get your tickets for your chance to win stove wood or wood pellets. For further information, contact John Casey at 435-2131.
Family histories needed for Centennial Book
    The Portage Lake Centennial History Book Committee is still looking for any articles, photographs or related material that could be included in its Centennial book, “Portage Lake History and Hearsay.”
    Articles, photographs and related material should be sent to history book chairperson, Norman St. Peter, P.O. Box 37, Portage, Maine 04768. Norman can also be reached at (207) 435-6948. Please be sure to label photographs and to include your name and address with any correspondence so that materials can be properly returned.
    Requests for book orders should be made to Anita Theriault, P.O. Box 114, Portage, Maine 04768. Anita can be reached by calling (207) 435-4311.
    Any other inquiries in regards to the Portage Lake Centennial History Book should be directed to the Portage Lake Town Office at (207) 435-4361.
Donation of uniforms welcomed
    If you or anyone you know has Cub Scout uniforms that are no longer being used, we have kids that can benefit from them now. Please contact Linda Milligan at 227-9135 or Julie Graham-Berry at 435-7137. Thank you.
Ongoing Events
    The Ashland Area Senior Citizens group meets every Thursday at noon at the Ashland Recreational Center. Any senior citizens wishing to participate in the potluck lunches and meetings are always welcome.
    The Portage Lake Seniors’ Lunch is held on the last Tuesday of every month at 11:30 a.m. at the Town Hall. All individuals 50 and over are invited to attend and can bring a potluck dish to share. For more information, contact Wilza Robertson at 435-6211 or Grace Nason at 435-6373.
    The Red Hat Loonies of Portage Lake meet the second Thursday of every month at Dean’s Motor Lodge. Membership dues are $2. Come and have a great meal and a great time, too! For more information, contact Rachel Stevens at 435-6358.
    If you can help plan for Portage Lake’s 2009 Centennial Celebration, please contact Corrine Routhier at 435-6854. Your help is both needed and appreciated.
    Ladies, are you interested in crafts or have some that you’ve started and just can’t seem to finish? If so, take yourself over to the Portage Lake Municipal Building for Girlz Night every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. Enjoy the company and the satisfaction of finally completing a project!
    (Julie Graham-Berry is the correspondent for Ashland, Portage Lake, Oxbow, Masardis, Garfield, Nashville Plantation and surrounding townships. She can be reached at 435-7137).


ImagePhoto courtesy of Julie Graham-Berry
    ASHLAND CENTRAL SCHOOL students from grades pre-K to fifth grade are pictured here with the 39 shoeboxes that they compiled to send off to needy children as part of the school’s Operation Christmas Child project. They are, front row, from left: Colson Condon, Lacey Jandreau and Joshua Clark. Middle row: Jamie Poulin, Alex Kaiser, Tristan Pelletier, Dayne Durand, Jacob Clark, Ava Cameron and Creed Chasse. Back row: Caitin Paradis, Amanda Whipple, Vanessa Rafford, Marissa Michalka, Hannah Stratton, Colt Ginn, Alex Gillis, Cassidy Pelletier, Tristan Perrault, Courtney Jimmo and Brianna Harris.




Photo courtesy of Julie Graham-BerryImage
    JUNIOR FIREFIGHTER Aaron McLellan, left, Portage Fire Chief Dave Bolstridge and Junior Firefighter Marcus Belanger pose for a picture in front of a Presque Isle fire truck after their fire attack school graduation. The program, directed by Grant Spinney of the Presque Isle Fire Department, graduated 19 junior firefighters – 17 young men and two young women.