May 20, 2024

RSU 71 approves interim superintendent


                  Robert England has been named interim superintendent of Regional School Unit 71                      for the 2024-25 school year.    


Photo courtesy of Robert England

BMI works with ROVs at BAHS


Belfast Marine Institute students examine a remotely operated vehicle. 

                            Using a Kevlar tether, BMI students retrieve an ROV from the pool at Belfast Area High School. 

May 16, 2024

BAHS announces new slate of Peer LEO officers


The new Peer LEO officers for the 2024-25 school year are, from left, Historian Grace Hayes, President Piper Sanders, Vice President Story Carlson, and Secretary Kate Lemon. They are holding their $400 donation check to PAWs.

BELFAST — The Belfast Lions Club has announced the new slate of officers for the 2024-25 school year of its Peer Leader LEOs community service program at Belfast Area High School.

They are Historian Grace Hayes, President Piper Sanders, Vice President Story Carlson and Secretary Kate Lemon.

The Peer Leader LEOs program recently held its second annual Mud Run/Walk 5K to raise funds for the local PAWs animal adoption agency at Belfast City Park and have since presented PAWs a check for $400.

May 13, 2024

Students cheer for friends as Masons award bikes


SWANVILLE — At Kermit Nickerson Elementary School, kids are working with Belfast Masonic Lodge 24, reading books in exchange for chances to win bikes.

The “Bikes For Books” program, run by the Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation, awards bicycles to children across the state every year. According to the foundation’s webpage, “In 2019 alone, approximately 90 Masonic Lodges throughout Maine presented over 2,500 bicycles to children … in local schools and public libraries.”

At Nickerson Elementary, students in grades 3 to 5 have been reading books, filling out tickets for each book read, and dropping them in a jar with the hope that their names might be selected.

“Each book they read, they get to put another ticket in,” Belfast Mason Keith Pooler told The Republican Journal. “So, it’s a program to encourage reading for children.”

On May 3, Masons Pooler and Ben Bucklin brought six bicycles to the Kermit Nickerson gymnasium and set them up against the wall. Kids filed into the gymnasium, following their teachers and sitting on the floor.

Dr. Laura Miller, acting school principal, introduced Pooler and Bucklin to the students, explaining what the Masonic organization does for the community.

“Charitable work,” Miller said. “What do you think that means?”

Moving into the drawing, Miller prefaced the contest by reminding students that, should they not win a bike, seeing a friend win can be just as exciting and fulfilling.

“It’s kind of like Christmas,” she said. “Sometimes it’s just as important to celebrate when a friend gets something, even if you don’t get it. Even though you wish with all your heart that you would get it.

“You’re all winners already,” Miller continued. “You all participated, you’re all readers.”

Pooler and Bucklin drew two names for each class. Students gasped and cheered as Pooler drew the names of their friends. Recipients, some blushing fiercely or rubbing their eyes, accepted claps on the back, whoops and hollers as they went to stand next to their new bikes.

When Pooler called the name of a girl in the fifth grade, she strode up to her teacher and told her, “I already have a bike,” before sitting back down.

The next girl Pooler called announced the same, and it wasn’t until Pooler had drawn a third ticket that the fifth grade class applauded as the recipient stood and accepted her prize.

“I want to say thank you to all of you,” Pooler said before leaving. “The generosity and charity in this room is huge. And we’ll see you again next year.”

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