The Bangor Daily News from Bangor, Maine on June 11, 2004 · 9
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The Bangor Daily News from Bangor, Maine · 9

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Bangor, Maine
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Friday, June 11, 2004
Page:
9
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B4 I BANGOR DAILY NEWS I FRIDAV IUNE II 2004 Local Sc Regional UMPI professor to attend Breadloaf conference BY RACHEL RICE OF THE NEWS STAFF PRESQUE ISLE — For Rich Zuras the third time really was a charm Zuras 37 who teaches poetry fiction and screenwriting at the University of Maine at Presque Isle has applied three times to attend the Breadloaf Writers Conference in Middlebury Vt The conference is the nation’s oldest and most competitive for writers to gain admission and this August Zuras finally is going It's exciting Zuras said Wednesday because only a small percentage of applicants are accepted there is room for only about 200 people The trip is even sweeter for Zuras because he was chosen as one of 10 people from an application pool of several hundred to receive a conference scholarship “There’s quite a difference between paying money to get into the conference and being a scholarship recipient” Zuras said Wednesday The scholarship covers the cost of Conference tuition and gives recipients the opportunity to meet with literary agents and publishers — a blessing for any writer “It is prestigious in a sense that many scholarship winners find their agent or publisher through this conference” he said Zuras is hoping the same will happen to him He will have a collection of 11 short stories titled “Every Family Thinks it is Normal” and a screenplay “American Men” to peddle Both works center on dysfunctional families and Zuras said he did the bulk of the writing in Presque Isle He quickly added that he didn’t draw his stories from the surrounding area “I think you tend to write about the places you just left” he said “It gives you a perspective” Zuras came to Presque Isle by way of North Dakota Vir ginia and Louisiana In 1990 Zuras received his bachelor’s degree with a concentration in writing from George Mason University in Arlington Va While completing his master's of fine arts degree at McNeese State University in Lake Charles La he worked under Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Olen Butler At UMPI since 2001 Zuras is completing his doctorate work with the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks He and his wife Kelley reside in Presque Isle with their two sons Before attending Breadloaf Zuras will attend the Wesleyan Writers Conference in Middle-town Conn as a scholarship recipient Both conferences he said aren’t just opportunities for his writing career they’re a chance to spend all of his waking hours immersed in one of his favorite things “I’m isolated up here in terms of other creative writers” he said “Just to be able to sit down for a few weeks with people living and breathing the writing of fiction will be a wel-c’ome change” Eastport residents to better statue Disintegrating base cause of concern BY DIANA GRAETTINGER OF THE NEWS STAFF EASTPORT — They have dubbed the campaign to raise $10000 to save the fisherman "Throw Us a Line" And it isn’t just any old fisherman they are trying to save This fisherman stands on a pedestal at the B fish pier and is Down East more than 10 feet tall He has an impressive beard and he is holding a big fish The statue was a gift from a Hollywood movie group that donated it to the town after filming the short-lived Fox television series “Murder in Small Town X” The reality-based series was a takeoff on shows such as “Survivor" In the series 10 contestants were charged with the task of solving a murder mystery Among the contestants was a 35-year-old firefighter named Angel Juarbe who won the $250000 prize but later lost his life in the Sept 11 attack on the World Trade Center Part of the money raised will be used for a memorial stone to honor Juarbe A group of Eastport folks have mounted a campaign to save the fisherman statue which has become a popular tourist attraction The group includes the Eastport Area Chamber of Commerce East-port for Pride the city and area businesses “It has been on the ground for three years with a fake base and it is about to fall to pieces so we have to do something quickly There is a lot of interest to do that from tourists and from townspeople” said Eleanor Norton who is a member of the committee When the statue was erected the artist put a thin layer of cement over a plywood base The base is crumbling Roland LaVallee who is BANGOR DAILY NEWS PHOTO BY DIANA GRAETTINGER Roland LaValle (from left) Eleanor Norton and City Manager George "Bud” Finch stand at the base of the fisherman statue at the fish pier A group of Eastport residents hopes to raise $10000 to place the statue on a permanent base chairman of the Eastport Area Chamber of Commerce and a member of the committee said that for the past year Chamber members have requested that the statue be placed on a permanent concrete base Because the statue is such a popular tourist attraction LaVallee said that he was optimistic the group will be able to raise the funds The group hopes to raise the money before the city begins replacing sidewalks and paving the parking lot in that area That reconstruction project will begin in September “The city has a major revitalization project taking place right now" said City Manager George “Bud" Finch “Just from the public sector alone there is close to $5 million being invest ed along Front Street and included in that is what is called the fish pier parking lot where the fisherman statue stands There will be a total rebuilding of that area and landscaping" Anyone who would like to contribute to the fund raiser may send a contribution to Save Our Fisherman Eastport City Rooms 78 High St Eastport 04631 Bear tries for pie damages Orono home BY DOUG KESSELI OF THE NEWS STAFF ORONO — Enticed by the smell of a strawberry-rhubarb pie cooling in a window a young bear tried unsuccessfully to break into an Orono home Wednesday night prompting the owners to set up a trap Thursday to capture the bruin The bear believed to be a 2-year-old male likely driven away by its mother in preparation for breeding season damaged the vinyl siding of the rural Orono home and a screen window but was scared away One of the homeowners hearing the disturbance about 11 pm went downstairs to investigate and turned on the light startling the bear said Maine Warden Chris Dyer “The bear turned tail and ran when it saw the resident” said Dyer who was on-site Thursday helping to put in place the heavy 8-foot long barrel-shaped trap Knowing that bears have a sweet tooth muffins were set just outside the entrance to the trap and formed a line down the middle of the barrel cage end ing below a bag of even more sweets The idea is that the bag of muffins will be irresistible to the bear It will try to dislodge the snack causing a 100-pound Owners decide to set a trap and capture bruin gate to slide down closing off the only way out on the other end Once captured the bear depending on its age and gen der will be taken 60 to 80 miles away to a remote area where it will be released said Buster Carter regional wildlife biologist with the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Dyer estimated that wardens who cover Piscataquis Penob scot Washington and Hancock counties get a dozen bear com plaints a day He said that is expected to continue With many of the foods they rely on not out yet such as berries and clover bears are looking for alternative sources to satisfy their hunger Dyer said Human food bird seed garbage and even the remnants of a barbecue offer a tempting menu selection for hungry animals such as bears said the wardens investigating the Orono incident The responsibility of curtailing animal complaints starts at home according to wardens "With urban sprawl we’re encroaching upon their habitat they're not encroaching upon us" said longtime Warden David Georgia “What we have to do is work in a partnership with the wildlife" One of the easiest and most effective deterrents the wardens said is to remove the temptation from the bears and other animals That includes removing bird feeders — at least until natural food supplies increase — that attract animals all along the food chain starting with the birds and small rodents that feed on the seeds and leftovers to the animals that feed on them This past winter and spring coyotes were frequent visitors in Orono where people were feeding the birds which attract ed mice which attracted cats Coyotes would feed on the other animals Dyer said barbecues should be cleaned after use to prevent the residue smells from attracting animals Garbage should not be left out overnight and bottles and cans should be cleaned so that nothing sweet remains that could attract bees and then bears who detect the bees and investigate The wardens said that they are not trapping animals to the extent they once were Their budget doesn't allow for it so they are reserving it for when animals pose serious safety issues such as in Wednesday's case where the bear was aggres sive enough to try to get to the pie Property owners face increased responsibility Dyer said with state laws requiring that homeowners foot the bill for animal related damage In this case the couple living in the Orono home has hired an animal damage control officer to help ward off or capture the bear Safety equipment crucial to saving lives on the water BY LIZ CHAPMAN OF THE NEWS STAFF SOUTHWEST HARBOR -Before you rev up that boat engine and hit the waves take a few minutes to make sure you have everything you need Those few minutes could easily save your life maritime officials said Thursday as another recreational boating season Hancock gets under way “Maine coastal waters are unforgiving in many ways" said Ensign John Hanley spokesman for US Coast Guard Group Southwest Harbor “The waters are dangerously cold year-round the tidal range is huge and there are countless ledges “Boaters in this region should go out of their way to ensure they are safe” Hanley said in a prepared statement According to Hanley 85 percent of the people who drowned in the United States in 2002 were not wearing safety jackets “Put an'other way up to 440 lives could have been saved if life jackets had been worn" Hanley said Capsizing and falls overboard are the most common reasons for fatal boating accidents he said Some 80 percent of all reported fatalities occurred on boats where the operator had not received boating safety instruction and alcohol was involved in nearly 40 percent of the 2002 fatalities a 5 percent increase over 2001 Hanley said Lt Alan Talbot of the Maine Marine Patrol in Lamoine agreed that simple precautions can prevent boating deaths and injuries Talbot and Hanley both listed life jackets as the No 1 safety tool for boaters — and they weren’t talking about keeping them in the vessel and then trying to find them and put them on after an accident or other emergency Other simple precau tions include: Enrolling in a boat safety course Never boating while under the influence of alcohol or drugs Getting a vessel safety check from the Coast Guard Auxiliary Talbot also urged boaters never to leave for an outing without telling someone where they’re going and their expected return time “So if you don’t show up someone knows they should be looking for you" Talbot said According to Hanley all boaters should carry basic equipment so they can call for help in an emergency including a compass map flares a cell phone or even a hand-held VHF radio Hanley invites members of the public to call him for more information He can be reached at 244-4232 Chief Warrant Officer Barry Cates can be contacted at 244-4234 to arrange for a vessel safety check Madawaska selectmen name new town manager BY BEURMOND BANVILLE OF THE NEWS STAFF MADAWASKA - The Madawaska Board of Selectmen on Tuesday night elected Fred Ventresco the present town manager at Milbridge as Madawaska ’s new town manag-! er Ventresco 40 who has been town manager at Milbridge for 2 'a years is expected to start work at Madawaska July 6 Before his work at Milbridge Ventresco worked in economic development at Gardiner and at Bangor Ventresco received a degree I in public administration from I the University of Maine in Orono in 2000 “1 thought the area was beautiful and that Madawaska is a nice town” he said Thursday afternoon in a telephone interview “I was only in town one night but the people I met were nice and the town council seemed professional “The first thing I would want Mattings Monday June 14 Holden — Town Councfl 6 pm Holden municipal building Wednesday June 16 Carmel — SAD 23 district budg et and special school board meeting 7 pm Caravel Middle School Thursday June 17 Etna — SAD 38 district budget and special school board meet ing 7 pm Etna-Dixmont School to do is step back and get the concerns of the area get to understand the ethic of the area and get a feel which is individual for each town” he said “I intend at first to listen more than anything else to see what people are looking for” According to Vern Doucette chairman of the Madawaska Board of Selectmen Ventresco will be paid $56000 a year for the position Fringe benefits will include medical insurance coverage Ventresco was one of eight people who applied for the position that becomes open July 1 Arthur Faucher Madawaska s town manager for the past 17 years will be done working on June 30 The field of eight applicants was narrowed to four by a committee named by the Board of Selectmen Those four were interviewed by the selectmen Doucette said Ventresco would start on a six-month probationary period I I K listen Andresen Helps you find a bargain bonanza in your back yard every other Saturday in the ?3anaor Daily Xruis For home detwery can 9906040

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