Down East Dispatches

Opinions, advisories, and musings from the length and breadth of Maine.


Tim Gron, of Lemont, Illinois, raced his motor scooter from California to Maine in four days — so fast that no one was at Four Corners Park to cheer him as he crossed the Real Cannonball scooter race finish line. Schoolchildren celebrated Gron’s victory with welcome posters the next morning.


The Reverend Steven Cartwright blessed 17 dogs during the Blessing of the Animals at Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul.


Engineers removed the center lift span of the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge and floated it downriver to the New Hampshire State Pier. The landmark bridge, which has linked Kittery and Portsmouth for 76 years, is being dismantled and replaced.


With his wife, Giana, on his back, Elliot Storey, of Westbrook, navigated sand traps, hurdles, and water hazards to beat out 43 other couples at the North American Wife Carrying Championship. The Storeys’ prize: $650 and 11 cases of beer (brewed in Chicago — what!?).


Anita Mueller photographed a Swainson’s hawk over Millinocket Airport, marking the third time ever that the species has been documented in Maine. Swainson’s hawks typically migrate between South America and western North America, where they nest in grassland cliffs.


Viewers at a presidential debate-watching party took turns escaping the tension in a room stocked with nine therapy kittens from the Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland.