Day in the Life: Bucksport

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Day in the Life

BUCKSPORT A Special Advertising Section of the Bangor Daily News | Friday, January 18, 2019


DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019

Bucksport,� Maine�

Courtesy Town of Bucksport.

So many opportunities to DOCK, DINE, & SHOP T

he Town of Bucksport, incorporated 1792, is located on the Penobscot River and is home to approximately 5,000 people. A major feature of the town is the downtown waterfront area, which draws visitors from miles around to enjoy both its recreational and business offerings. The mile-long brick paved walkway begins at US Route 1 by Hannaford and extends through the downtown up to Bucksport House of Pizza. The view from the walkway is like no other in the state—visitors get the best views of Fort Knox, the Penobscot River, and the Penobscot Narrows Bridge & Observatory. Many visitors to Bucksport don’t realize that they can DOCK, DINE, and SHOP here.

The downtown waterfront area is home to many year-round and several seasonal businesses that are ready to serve residents and visitors alike. Guests arriving by boat can DOCK at our 315-foot town dock and then can DINE at Bucksport House of Pizza, Harborview Grille, Friars’ Brewhouse Tap Room, Verona Wine and Design, MacLeod’s Restaurant, Ming’s Garden, Local Variety, and Wahl’s Dairy Port. Before or after the meal, visitors can SHOP at Bookstacks, Bolt Fabrics, Sundial Framing & Photography, Lighthouse Arts Center, Community Pharmacy, Huckleberries Card & Gift, Stubborn Cow Glass, Blossoms by the Bay, Bucksport Bay

DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019

Tanning, NAPA Auto Parts, Sawyer Auto Sales, Tozier’s Bucksport Store, Fretz Design and the Alamo Theater. Travelers from afar or those wanting to spend more than a single day in downtown Bucksport can rent a room at the Fort Knox Inn (located right on the waterfront) or at the Bucksport Motor Inn located by Dunkin Donuts. The Bucksport waterfront is also home to one out of a 34-piece outdoor exhibit by the Schoodic International Sculpture Symposium as part of the Maine Sculpture Trail which spans over 200 miles along the coastal region of Downeast Maine. The sculpture in Bucksport, titled “Before the Wind,” was created in 2014 by Matthew Foster and resides at Flag Point. The waterfront district is home to a number of historical sites including the Bucksport Historical Society, the Buck Memorial Library, and the Buck Cemetery. The historical society, which is located in the old railroad station, exhibits artifacts from local history including that of Admiral Robert Peary, the American explorer who reached the geographic North Pole with his expedition in 1909. The Buck Cemetery is home to the cursed monument of Colonel Jonathan Buck. Legend has it that the stain on Buck’s monument is the leg and foot of a witch that Colonel Buck ordered put to death by burning in the 1700s. The waterfront walkway is host to many events during the year that are sponsored by the Bucksport Bay Area

Chamber of Commerce and Main Street Bucksport including the Bridge the Gap Race (April 6, 2019), Bucksport Bay Festival (July 19-21, 2019,), Bucksport Arts Festival (August 9-10, 2019), Ghostport (October 19, 2019) and Wednesdays on Main (Wednesday evenings from the beginning of June until the end of August). For more information about all that’s happening in downtown Bucksport check us out at,, and



DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019

5 things to do

in Bucksport off the beaten path O

Lighthouse Arts Center

ne thing’s for sure: Bucksport is a vibrant, thriving Maine city with something for everyone. If your experience with the Bucksport area has been limited to family trips to Fort Knox and the Penobscot Narrows Bridge & Observatory, you’re missing out. After you’re done with those venerable Maine landmarks, check out these other less well-known but equally quintessential Bucksport attractions.

Opened in 2016 on Main Street, Lighthouse Arts Center reflects the beauty of Bucksport and midcoast Maine through a carefully curated gallery space featuring local artists. There are spaces available for artists to use, and supplies are sold in the shop as well. Classes run throughout the year—you can contact Lighthouse Arts Center if you are interested in either taking a class or sharing your own skills as a teacher. Check out the calendar before you go prepare for special programming.

Alamo Theater One of the oldest working movie theaters in New England, the Alamo has a nostalgic charm you must experience in person. Open Friday through Sunday every week, the movie theater not only plays the latest releases but classics and foreign films, as well. The Alamo theater was built in 1916 and was bought and restored by Northeast Historic Film (NHF). NHF is a moving image archive, and, in keeping with their mission, one of the archival moments from their collection plays before the feature films. Members get a discount at the box office, but even general admission tickets prices are reasonably priced. The space seats 125 people and can be rented for special events like a birthday party or fundraiser. All year long, the Alamo Theater presents public exhibits, screenings, documentaries, symposia, film festivals, and teachers workshops as well as workshops for the public on preservation. Be sure to check their calendar online to plan your visit.

Waterfront Walkway

Friar’s Brewhouse and Tap Room

Located in the heart of historic downtown Bucksport, the Waterfront Walkway offers a romantic mile-long brick path complete with Instagram-worthy views of Fort Knox and the Penobscot Narrow Bridge. Just a stone’s throw away from some favorite local restaurants, the walkway is easy to find from Main Street—just head towards the water from there. Public restrooms are located at each end of the walkway. This path itself is a cozy outdoor space featuring water fountains to admire and gazebos in which to gaze lovingly into a special someone’s eyes. Peppered along the path are historic plaques full of facts. If that doesn’t impress your out-oftown friends, maybe the beautiful flowers grown there in the warmer months will. This short and serene stroll is a must for Bucksport visitors and locals alike.

Brothers Don and Ken are members of the Bucksportbased Franciscan Brothers of St. Elizabeth of Hungary. They are true Franciscan Friars—a religious order founded in 1209—and can they brew some beer! The two opened the Friar’s Brewhouse and Tap Room in April of 2018. After closing their bakehouse in Bangor earlier this year, the Brothers shifted their focus to opening and operating Bucksport’s premier brewery. Brother Don is a trained chef who has put together a menu that complements the award-winning brews, so don’t sleep on the snacks here. Check out their Facebook page for the most up-to-date operating hours.

Silver Lake Silver Lake is great for spending the day fishing with the kids or kayaking with friends, but it is also great for a leisurely afternoon stroll or a sleepy Sunday picnic. There are six different hiking trails in the park around Silver Lake providing summer walkers and winter snowshoers alike gorgeous views and lots of variety. Don’t forget to bring your binoculars—bald eagles are often spotted in the area as well as native mammals and lots of other wildlife.

DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019


Northeast Historic Film

Bucksport’s treasure is hidden in plain sight


ince 1986, Northeast Historic Film (NHF) has been operating as a nonprofit organization collecting and preserving moving images and video recordings. Their collection consists of 10 million feet of film that runs over 8,000 hours. The footage is donated from people’s attics, news stations, and dusty university closets throughout New England. Once the film is in NHF’s possession, its staff works with state-of-the-art equipment and preservation techniques to make it viewable again to educators, history buffs, and anyone else who may be curious. “If you are at all curious about what life was like in the 20th century in this region, we have recordings of all aspects of it during that time from a variety of viewpoints,” said David Weiss, NHF’s founder and executive director. “If you are a researcher, educator, or just have an interest, you can come see what we have either here in our library or the 3,000 videos online you can watch.” NHF calls the Alamo Theatre on Main Street in Bucksport, Maine, home. The theater was built in 1916 and is one of the oldest operating movie theaters in the country. NHF restored the Alamo over a period of eight years beginning in 1992, reopening it in 1999. It is Bucksport’s local

movie theater for new releases, but you’ll also find screenings of silent films, documentaries, and more. NHF presents archival clips and short films from their collection before feature films each weekend. The storage facility located behind the theater, known as “the cube,” was completed in 2003. Advanced temperature and humidity monitors have been installed for optimal longevity of the film and equipment that is housed there. Rental storage spaces are also available to universities, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and individuals. Anyone can become a member of NHF for additional benefits including special pricing on tickets to events at the Alamo Theater. Memberships for individuals start at just $35 a year, $20 for students and educators, but there are multiple levels with plenty of other perks. When Weiss and his partner, Karan Sheldon, first moved to Maine in the mideighties, their goal was to start a production company in here. While those plans were just forming, they came across an old film entitled “From Stump to Ship: 1930 Logging Film.” Shot in the 1930s, it needed a little cleaning up. “We thought it would be fun to put it back together, to see what it would look like. The grant proposal we had written said that we would show it to people. Well, 1,100 people showed up to the premiere. Over 800 showed up to a screening in Machias. We ended up showing it over 25 times all over the state.” What they thought was something that would only interest a few other “film nerds” and loggers ended up resonating with folks in the community.

“It turned out to be really something,” said Weiss. “Here we had this film and all we did was dust it off and record the narration that was already written. And we restored it, of course. We didn’t make it ourselves, but people really responded well to it and came out to see it. That is essentially how Northeast Historic Film began. We wanted to keep doing that for people.” For as long as there has been the technology to capture everyday life, folks have been doing so. Most people, unfortunately, don’t understand how to properly store and care for older film. This can result in film being kept in areas that are too hot or too damp such as basements and garages. This can deteriorate the film at an accelerated rate. There is also a lack of working equipment to view older films with, leaving people with footage they cannot view. NHF takes vintage films and cleans them up, provides safe storage, and, most importantly, makes these films easily accessible for future viewings by placing them in the archive. NHF unlocks the memories of yesterday and shares them with people today and, hopefully, tomorrow. “One film I particularly love is called

By Jasmine J. Haines

‘Cherryfield, 1938’”, Weiss said. “It’s only six minutes long, silent, black and white, water damaged, scratchy... it was not in good condition at all. It takes place late winter, early spring. It is very bleak, but whoever made the film included everybody in the town, it seems like. It’s a little shot here of someone sawing wood, another one there with a person bringing in hay. People coming out of shops on Main Street and waving at the camera. It paints a picture of a time very far away.” There are many films in the collection that capture what Weiss loves about “Cherryfield, 1938”— it’s the story of people like us living where we live. Whether they’re films of families on summer vacation, high school basketball games, or a beloved feline companion, what humans choose to record is still pretty much the same, even if they aren’t using the same equipment. The NHF archive shows that people hold on to similar memories and value the same kind of moments across generations. Weiss affirms this: “If you want to understand what has happened in the last 100 years, that’s what we capture.”


DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019

Bucksport has amazing people, beautiful sights... and a couple of wicked spooky stories BY JASMINE J. HAINES

SARAH WARE CAN’T SEEM TO REST IN PEACE An unsolved mystery haunts the town of Bucksport, Maine. Sarah Ware was brutally murdered in the quiet waterfront town, but her killer was never brought to justice. The case begins over one hundred years ago on September 17th, 1898, but remains cold to this day. Ware was a 52-year-old woman who worked in the town providing child care and housecleaning to support herself. She left a friend’s home one fateful late summer evening with the intention of collecting some debts on her walk home. Sadly, one debt she tried to collect that night ended up being her last. Sarah Ware was never seen alive again. Her body was found a couple of weeks later in brush off Miles Lane. She had suffered severe blunt force trauma to the extent that her head was barely attached to the rest of her. Some accounts report that when the police transported her body, her head fell entirely off. A bloody tarp and a hammer were discovered soon after Ware’s body had been found, and police quickly connected them to a man named William T. Treworgy. Treworgy was rumored to have a bad temper and the hammer that was found had his initials on it. Witnesses also confessed to being paid by Treworgy to move Ware’s body. With all the evidence and witness accounts, it still took years for the case of Sarah Ware’s murder to go to trial. By the time Treworgy took the stand, the murder weapon had gone missing, witnesses had recanted their previous statements, and Ware’s body had been exhumed and examined over and over again. What should have been a home run for the defense turned into an acquittal due to lack of evidence. With the case at a dead end, Sarah Ware’s body was finally laid to rest in the former Silver Lake cemetery with a modest

wooden cross marking her grave. But the story doesn’t end there: in 1930, all the bodies in Silver Lake cemetery were moved to Oak Hill Cemetery. A dam was added, and Silver Lake grew to flood the burial grounds. Some accounts say that Ware’s body was never moved due to her not having a headstone at her original gravesite, though there is a headstone for Sarah Ware at the Oak Hill Cemetery. While Sarah’s body may or may not have made it to Oak Hill Cemetery in the 1930s, her head didn’t get there until 1998. Her skull remained in evidence until 1982, when Ellsworth courthouse employees came across it stored in a wooden box resting on a shelf. It had been saved as evidence all those years in what could have been a hopeful gesture that there would be another trial. It took another 16 years for her head and her headstone to be reunited, exactly 100 years after her murder. Sarah Ware’s killer may not have been brought to justice, but her community has never forgotten her. Visitors can see Ware’s grave today at the Oak Hill Cemetery in Bucksport or stroll around Silver Lake to try and catch a glimpse of her ghost who is reported to haunt the area.

TOWN FOUNDER LEFT A ‘MARK’ ON THE AREA Colonel Jonathan Buck founded the town of Bucksport in 1762. Legend has it that Buck served as justice of the peace in Bucksport. With the powers vested in him, he sentenced a local woman accused of witchcraft to be executed. The unnamed woman warned the Colonel that he would always bare the mark of this injustice and she cursed him with her last breath. Years after Buck’s death, a large stain appeared on his tomb. The unmistakable shape of a disembodied leg appears to be suspended under the engraved name Buck, for all to see.

In some versions of the story she was hanged; in others, she was burned alive. One gruesome account describes how her leg fell off her body and rolled out of the fire as a symbol of what is to come. In perhaps the scariest version, the woman was his mistress and pregnant with his child. Everyone in Bucksport knows the tale, and everyone has their favorite version of events. It’s a fantastic tale, but no record of the execution has been found. While the mark does indeed appear on the Buck Memorial, it isn’t his tombstone—his grandchildren had it built in his honor 60 years after his death. Visitors can still see the alleged curse placed on Buck today. The memorial is a giant obelisk that stands in a cemetery sharing the colonel’s name on Route 1. There is a detailed account of the story conveniently located near the memorial. Curse or no curse, the stain and the story are worth checking out. It could be that it is inside the parameters of a cemetery, or that it looks vaguely like a witches’ boot, but the dark gray mark does feel like an eerie message from another place or time.

DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019


Great things to do with kids in and around Bucksport Y

ou might think that Bucksport doesn’t offer a lot in the way of family-style activities. Well, then, you’d be wrong. Here are five great things to do with the kiddos in this wonderful Maine town.

1) Ice Skating Strap on the skates and take the family to the Bucksport Outdoor Municipal Skating Rink. Located on Mills Lane and open seven days a week, this skating rink might be the answer to your family’s cabin fever this February. The rink is free to the public and opens every day from daylight to 9 p.m. with a warming hut available that provides benches to rest and a bathroom. The warming hut is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. Someone outgrow their skates? There are plenty of skates to borrow—free of charge—in a variety of sizes for both kids and kids-at-heart.

2) Unique Rock Shop The Unique Rock Shop has all the makings of a regular rock shop with its many crystals, fossils, and gems. The stuff that makes it truly unique, though, is the cool local artwork featured, the friendly and knowledgeable staff, and the geode cutter. They have a

variety of sizes and prices of uncut geodes for you and your child to select. At first glance, a geode might appear to be nothing more than a rock—but it’s what inside that makes it truly special. After you select your geode, the staff will cut it for you and your child gets to be the first person to see the beautiful crystals revealed in their very own geode. The experience is magical and grounded in science, providing an unforgettable memory (or even a new tradition for your family). Located at 135 US Highway 1 in Verona, it is worth the drive.

3) Penobscot Narrow Bridge & Observatory Not far outside of Bucksport is the impressive Penobscot Narrows Bridge & Observatory. How impressive? It’s taller than the Statue of Liberty at well over 400 feet. It also boasts the tallest public bridge observatory in the world. The 360-degree views of the surrounding area will remind you why you live in Maine. While you can drive along the bridge any day of the year, the observatory and its campus are open from May 1 through October 31 to all ages with a great discount for Maine residents. One of only four observatory bridges in the world, the Penobscot Narrow Bridge & Observatory is a must-see for your family!

4) Birdsacre-Stanwood Wildlife Sanctuary Open seven days a week during daylight hours, the Stanwood Wildlife Sanctuary in Ellsworth offers walking trails for every level. Not just for the warmer months, these trails are perfect for snowshoeing and skiing, too. There is an array of bird, mammal, and plant populations to observe in their natural habitat here, and each time you visit you will see something new. Picnic areas alongside shaded ponds and in the old apple orchard are perfect for that snack time pit stop before hitting the Nature Center to explore. There are no bikes allowed, but dogs are fine in designated areas. More information about everything Birdsacre and Stanwood Wildlife Sanctuary can be found on their website.

5) Penobscot Marine Museum The name sounds like one of those “look, don’t touch” museums, but the Penobscot Marine Museum (located in nearby Searsport) knows what kids want. They provide plenty of hands-on and interactive activities and exhibits for all ages. Need to burn some energy? Kids can steer a real ship’s wheel or climb out on the foot ropes on a giant to-scale model of a ship’s mast in an area called the “Yard in the Yard.” The “Peapod” area is full of hands-on learning activities. Young

children will especially get a kick out of dressing up in 19th-century costumes and it give new meaning to a “throwback Thursday” social media post. While the museum’s exhibits are closed until May, there is special programming throughout the winter and spring. This Martin Luther King Jr. Day, children ages 5–10 can enjoy crafts, games, and songs all focused on life in the late 1800s on the Penobscot Bay. Check out their website for more information.


DAY IN THE LIFE: BUCKSPORT • Bangor Daily News Special Advertising Section • January 18, 2019

Whole Oceans:


‘Bucksport is an ideal location for our project.’ Whole Oceans’ objective is to be a world leader in sustainable land-based aquaculture. The clean, cool waters of Maine’s waterways combined with Maine’s fishing heritage and a culture of ingenuity make Maine an ideal location for our business—producing traceable seafood through environmentally-friendly and sustainable operations. Whole Oceans is committed to meeting the highest quality standards, and Maine is a state of authentic, resourceful, and hardworking people—characteristics we intend to emulate in our product. Whole Oceans has been working in Maine for

five years. The great people of Hancock County and the reuse potential in existing infrastructure from the old Verso paper mill made Bucksport an ideal location for our project. We would like to acknowledge and thank the Town of Bucksport, local partners, educational organizations, contractors, engineers, vendors, regulatory agencies, and politicians for their collective contributions to our progress to date. We look forward to becoming an integral part of Maine’s working waterfront and invite you to follow our progress by subscribing for email updates at

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