FREE spring 2014 â€˘ vol. 17, no. 1
Digginâ€™ the Garden plus
centennial hall naturally inclined the bunkhouse cooking for health
spring 2014 • vol. 17, no. 1
susie miller roy
I consider myself a fairly positive person, but like the little girl with the curl right in the middle of her forehead, when I’m bad, I’m horrid. The end of this past winter brought me to that point. I’m lucky I have good friends who were willing to listen to me grouse about ice dams, frozen firewood, and inflated fuel bills and still proclaim to care for me. As I write this in mid-March, the first faint signs of spring are shining a late afternoon light on my bad behavior and reminding me that the best part of a too-long Maine winter is the promise of spring. Watching the front-line arrival of chives forcing their way toward the sun, or lilacs in the rear-guard waiting to burst forth in a frenzy of fragrance and color, makes winter’s surrender seem almost anticlimactic. What was all the fuss about? Nowhere is this solemn defeat so evident as in a garden, although few cultivate theirs to the extent that Bernard McLaughlin did when, in 1936, he began planting the gardens that now bear his name. Over 200 lilacs grace the lawns of McLaughlin Garden and each year people flock to them to savor the sweet victory of spring. It’s no coincidence that my editor’s note these past seventeen springs have had to do with resurrection and renewal, and I think you’ll find it’s a thread that runs through the articles in this issue as well. So, now that spring is finally here, my friends can look forward to me being very, very good . . . at least until black fly season arrives. —Laurie LaMountain
8 diggin’ the garden
11 centennial hall
Editor & Publisher Laurie LaMountain Contributing Writers Leigh Macmillen Hayes, Perri Black, Sharon Smith Abbott Contributing Photographers Stephanie Edwards, Kate Michaud, Dan Trowbridge, Jim Brake, Leigh Macmillen Hayes, Susie Miller Roy, Lorraine Blais Graphic Designer Dianne Lewis Proofreader/Copy Editor Leigh Macmillen Hayes Lake Living is published quarterly by Almanac Graphics, Inc., 625 Rocky Knoll Rd, Denmark, ME 04022 207-452-8005. www.lakelivingmaine. com e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ©2014. All rights reserved. Contents of this magazine may not be reproduced in any manner without written consent from the publisher. Annual subscriptions are available by sending check or money order for $20 to the above address.
by leigh macmillen hayes
by perri black
16 rejuvenation and renewal
by perri black
19 naturally inclined
by laurie lamountain & leigh macmillen hayes
22 the bunkhouse
by laurie lamountain
24 our house
by leigh macmillen hayes
24 dirt to done
by laurie lamountain
28 cooking for health cover photo scott vlaun,
moose pond arts+ecology © 2006
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Diggin’ the Garden
by leigh macmillen hayes
and to further control any invasive plants that affect the original plot. Bernard McLaughlin nurtured a diverse collection of wildflowers, ferns, woody shrubs and over 200 lilacs on his land and kept the garden gate open to any and all visitors. Part of the mission of the non-profit formed in 1997 to preserve his legacy is to always have that open door policy. This is a community space and the two women are adamant that the Curtis House and land become what the people of this surrounding area want. “We’re a non-profit for an explicit reason,” says Stephanie. “McLaughlin Garden belongs to the public and we’re here to
t isn’t only the beautiful lilacs and other perennials that are blossoming at McLaughlin Garden and Homestead in South Paris this year. Thanks to the hard work of the dedicated board of directors, community members, a few foundations and an anonymous donor, the entire campus is growing. With the purchase of the Curtis Homestead at 103 Main Street, right next door, McLaughlin Garden will expand from 4.5 acres to 6.3. Stephanie Edwards, development and operations coordinator, and Kristin Perry, director of horticulture, radiate passion and positive energy about this project. “We are ecstatic to be able to protect that green space and to add more educational garden beds,” says Stephanie. “The home can be used for programs. And it also creates a nice little historic strip from Maurice’s Restaurant to the Curtis House to McLaughlin Garden. We have a little protected slice of life in South Paris now.” “Acquiring this property is part of protecting what we have here at McLaughlin,” says Kristin. It is her responsibility to maintain and preserve the gardens Bernard McLaughlin began planting in 1936. The new property gives her the opportunity to build more garden beds for a variety of purposes beyond what Bernard had planted
provide a service.” In saying that, the two women see this next year as a time for the greater community to weigh in about what might happen with the space. They plan to use a suggestion board and a formal survey as two means for the public to express ideas both big and small. Perhaps you dream of a coffee shop or ice cream stand in the house. Maybe you have an idea similar to one presented this past year when it was suggested that they host a Jack-O’Lantern Spectacular featuring hundreds of illuminated pumpkins, plus popcorn and apple cider. “It’s what we’ve always been here for,” says Stephanie, “but now we’ve got even more room . . . room to breathe, room to create, room to make people’s visions come to life.” Of course, they have some ideas of their own. Kris mentions demonstration gardens, including a dye garden. Stephanie talks about a Harry Potter garden. And maybe a small orchard will be in the plans to promote pollinators. Indoors, perhaps a commercial kitchen will be just the thing--making this a place to not only grow a vegetable, but
Bernard McLaughlin nurtured a diverse collection of wildflowers, ferns, woody shrubs and over 200 lilacs on his land and kept the garden gate open to any and all visitors. Part of the mission of the non-profit formed in 1997 to preserve his legacy is to always have that open door policy.
point out, the board of directors and other volunteers plus the staff devoted much time to keeping the Garden in the pink. They are especially thankful for the generosity of those who helped them raise the monies necessary to keep the gate open. Now they feel as if they are in the position to build a sustainable future.To do so will still require the continued support, in all ways possible, of those passionate about the Garden. The staff of three includes Kristin as a full-time employee, Stephanie at part-time and a part-time seasonal assistant gardner. Consequently, they rely heavily on volunteers to run the gift shop, assist with weeding, plus help organize programs and major events. This year they will also have a college intern or two in their midst to help with daily chores and complete projects for class credit. Opening day for the 2014 season will be May 1st. Other special events include the Wildflower Celebration on Motherâ€™s Day, Lilac Festival on Memorial Day weekend, Garden Illuminated July 19th and Annual Benefit August 23rd. In addition, they offer volunteer activities including Helping Hands Days, when you can learn how best to weed invasives, and Power Propagators, where the low-impact activity of dividing and repotting plants to make them available for sale is the focus. Other events include
also to learn how to cook that vegetable. They also plan to coordinate with local organizations, e.g. Healthy Oxford Hills, the Oxford County Resource Collaborative, Alan Day Community Gardens, Bryant Pond 4-H, Center for Ecologically Based Economy and Farm to School Program to address new audiences. Future programs will include more kidsâ€™ programming, general outdoor awareness and plant excitement. Everyone is invited to visit McLaughlin Garden free of charge. Spread out a blanket in the yard for a picnic, throw a ball around, walk the garden paths and help develop the vision. Once a concept is in place, it will be time for building plans, parking and landscape assessments and all the other tasks required prior to any ground breaking. And then comes the fundraising effort necessary to carry out the project. This will be a long-term process, but in the meantime, McLaughlin Garden will continue to offer the fine programs they are known for, and theyâ€™ll make some minor changes to the Curtis property. Kristin rubs her hands together itching to turn over some soil and pull some weeds. All has not always been as bright as the wildflowers that grow in the gardens. The recent recession took a toll on the non-profit and things looked grim for a while. But, as both Stephanie and Kristin are quick to
Art in the Barn, lectures and book signings, a bus tour to visit a Vermont garden, plus preservation, conservation and horticultural education. The public is invited to attend any and all events or just take a few moments or hours to sit on a bench, wander the paths and enjoy the property. McLaughlin Garden and Homestead is also available as a rental venue for gatherings, weddings,
reunions and memorial celebrations held amidst the colorful and fragrant setting. This May through October make time to visit the horticultural museum. Embrace the opportunity to find out whatâ€™s growing, get your hands dirty and expand your knowledge of the natural world. Check out www.mclaughlingarden.org for a complete list of offerings. R
lois strickland dan trowbridge
Bernard in his garden.
Centennial Hall by perri black • photographs by jim brake
“Where we live and who we live there with define the terms of our relationship to the world and to humanity.” wendell berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays
he local history of a particular place is no less important and worth preserving than the famous relics of global civilization such as the Great Wall of China, Chartres Cathedral and the Statue of Liberty. I recently saw the wonderful film, The Monuments Men about saving Europe’s great art treasures from the Nazis. A character in the film essentially stated that if you destroy a generation of a people’s culture, it is as if they never existed. I think the same can be said if the monuments and relics of a community’s history are neglected or lost.
The Centennial Hall in Denmark, Maine, was built in 1876 to mark the nation’s one hundredth anniversary and it is now being resurrected by local people to provide another public space in the village center. The ultimate goal is to create a museum of the area’s agricultural and industrial past, as well as a symbol of pride in local history. In their own way, these renovators are our homegrown “monuments men.” The Hall is not particularly unique and it is unclear what its original purpose was meant to be, but it was used continuously by the town for more than a century. It is a lakelivingmaine.com
Clockwise from top left: Colin Hebb, Jeremy Twombly-Wiser, Nick Rehmert, Bill Shimamura Center: Carpentersâ€™ notebook
typical form of 19th century rural architecture, similar to the Denmark Arts Center just down the road, and in the late 1800s and early 1900s it served as the meeting hall for the Knights of the Maccabees (a fraternal organization like the Odd Fellows or Masons). By 1929, the U.S. Post Office occupied part of the first floor and there was a coffin factory upstairs during the 1930s. When the post office relocated in 1982, the Hall was, sadly, left to stand empty and it gradually deteriorated over the following three decades. In 2012, a private individual had the foresight to purchase the Hall, along with the farmhouse, barn and outbuildings on the neighboring lot, in order to save them from an imminent demise. The Hall and the farmhouse are currently being restored with the aim of eventually creating a space to display large artifacts and exhibits related to local history. Restoring an antique building is not the same as constructing a new one. Undertaking such a project requires contributions from many individuals with a wide range of unique skills and, fortunately, there are a number of builders and craftsmen in this area who possess such skills. The Hall is the main focus right now but the farmhouse next door is being worked on simultaneously. The barn, outbuildings and gardens will come later. The first matter of business was to restore the Hall’s roof. No building can survive long without one, and the years of being exposed to the elements had taken their toll. Trees were growing up through the floor and mounds of debris had to be removed prior to construction. Once the roof was replaced, the structure was jacked up five feet so a new foundation could be poured. A heated concrete slab on the first floor and a partial basement for the state of the art wood pellet boiler were added. Granite blocks were brought in and re-cut to fit along the exterior of the new frost wall, duplicating the appearance of an original foundation. The craftsmen then moved on to the interior. The plaster was stripped from the lath to facilitate new electrical wiring and closed cell foam insulation was sprayed in, which also added strength to the balloon framing. New wood flooring was laid, preserving the hole through which coffins were lowered downstairs. A metal bar joined by a turnbuckle was also installed,
An antique town hall, old farmhouse and related outbuildings may not seem particularly special, but they are relics of a community’s past and important symbols of our country’s grassroots history. connecting the second floor exterior walls and pulling them together to prevent the frame from bowing out. A 20x18 two-story addition was built onto the back of the Hall to make space for handicapped accessible bathrooms and an elevator. The narrow, steep staircase in the front room was moved to the addition and replaced by modern, wider stairs to provide easier access to the second floor. The original trim around the doors and windows is being saved or replicated and the antique six-over-six windows in the main building are being carefully restored whenever possible. Replacement windows closely matching the original style have been generously donated by neighbors and are also being sourced from a local lumber yard. The Hall and addition will be getting all new plaster, while in the farmhouse the original horse hair plaster is being carefully restored. All of this work is a joint effort being executed by a community of talented, experienced tradesmen with a deep interest in their craft. They operate easily as a team and meet during breaks every day in a sunny room of the farmhouse to discuss their progress. Ongoing jobs and necessary materials are listed in pencil on the “carpenters’ notebook,” a shingle nailed to the wall so it won’t get misplaced. Most of these guys have worked together on various projects and they have become a sort of family, carrying on long held traditions and preserving the ancient techniques of their trades. While the future of the Hall is not yet set in stone, there are plans for a museum
featuring operating examples of 19th century water power technology. The focus will be on the role water mills played in the area’s history. The geography of Denmark did not lend itself well to a purely agricultural economy but its proximity to rivers and lakes provided an excellent source of power and, in its heyday, the town boasted a barrel mill, shingle mill, box mill, grist mill, sawmill and a woolen mill. A number of interesting items were found while cleaning out the Centennial Hall, most notably an Old Town canvas canoe that was later discovered to have been bought for Camp Wyonegonic in 1913. Other artifacts of rural life will likely come from the bowels of nearby barns and, as the Hall’s owner admits, a lot of collectors’ wives will be happy to see them go. The farmhouse next door may be used to house visiting artists, craftsmen and participants in local activities. The barn, which functioned as a dairy in the past, will eventually be restored as part of the museum. An antique town hall, old farmhouse and related outbuildings may not seem particularly special, but they are relics of a community’s past and important symbols of the country’s grassroots history. They remind us of where we come from and who our ancestors were. Americans pride themselves on their rugged individualism but local communities, of all sizes, are the true measure of the nation. Rural communities represent the backbone of America and it is essential to preserve their history because that history defines what we think of as home. R Some of the “monuments men” involved in restoring the Denmark Centennial Hall: Roger LeGoff and crew, excavation; Tim Barry and crew, foundation & slab; Dana and Cole Watson, building jacking; George Skoglund and crew, stone work; Todd and Jennifer Bosworth, electrical; Mike Collins and crew, plumbing; Matt and Butch Stacey, wood pellet boiler; Bob Wiser, general contractor: Jeremy Twombly-Wiser, window restoration:Bill Shimamura, head carpenter, Colin Hebb, Scott Dvorak, Paul Ferland; Nick Rehmert, painting/plaster repair/window restoration;Jim Brake, painting/plaster repair/wallpaper; Paul Kiesman and crew, foam insulation and plastering; Ron Roof, plastering; Bob McHatton, mold remediation consultation; Ed Dunlea and crew, concrete cutting. lakelivingmaine.com
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skin and nail care, spa treatments
The skin is the body’s largest organ—it is also the most exposed to the elements. Winter cold, dry heat, wind and sunlight all take their toll. Good skin care is essential for good health. Pedicures are also serious healthcare for those suffering from diabetes, Lyme disease and neuropathy, all of which require special attention to foot care. Pampering yourself with a facial, pedicure or other spa treatment by one of these local professional is time well spent rejuvenating both your body and soul.
Rejuvenation & Renewal by perri black
ome may consider facials, pedicures, massages and skin care therapies to be luxuries, but they also fall under the category of “self-care” and are part of taking responsibility for one’s health and wellness. Yoga, swimming, tai chi and various forms of dance and exercise help improve one’s physical status, while spa treatments, saunas and massages promote relaxation, which is essential for overall well-being. Reflexology and acupressure are ancient medical practices that boost blood and lymph fluid circulation and help with pain relief. Try sampling some of the following services available in the region to get a jump on your personal rejuvenation and prepare for the warmer seasons to come. You’ll find the lakes region boasts a surprising number of top quality professionals and programs offering an array of services and activities to help you recover from a long winter.
Heaven and Earth
The Dragonfly Room Bridgton, 318-4376
Pedicures by Diane Boutilier in the calming, meditative Dragonfly Room are one of my favorite personal indulgences. A soothing foot soak in warm water accompanied by a reflexology massage and paraffin dip, and followed by a final flourish of color on your toenails is a wonderfully relaxing and luxurious experience. Diane also offers customized manicures, facials, waxing, bodywork and other skin care treatments at the Dragonfly Room, and will travel for spa parties and special events.
Freedom Day Spa
Windham, 892-3133 www.freedomdayspa.net Featuring massage/bodywork, skin and nail care, and waxing, the Freedom Day Spa also offers spa parties, products and packages, plus monthly specials. Gift certificates available.
Heaven and Earth provides body treatments, massages, facials, manicures, pedicures, and other spa services to help you achieve balance between stresses and indulgences. Memberships and gift certificates available.
Kathleen of Bridgton
Bridgton, 647-3370 www.kathleenof bridgton.com Licensed aesthetician Kathleen Stevens offers a luxurious range of facial and body rejuvenation treatments for women and men. She also performs acupressure (great for the sinuses) and various massage therapies, as well as eyebrow artistry and facial hair removal. I can personally attest that your skin and spirit will be wonderfully renewed after a customized facial and the soothing hot and cool LaStone therapy in her quiet and relaxing room at 55 Main Street, just up the hill from Highland Lake beach.
A good massage can work wonders and rejuvenate you both physically and mentally. It will iron out the kinks winter has left in your muscles and help you relax and reduce stress. There are many massage therapists in the region working with a variety of techniques and the following come highly recommended.
Bridgton, 890-5835 www.beemassaged.massage therapy.com Take the sting out of life and ease stress with a massage at Bee Massaged, in the yellow building at the base of Main Hill in Bridgton.
Antonia (Toni) Forsythe
Harrison and Norway, 583-6179 Toni has 28 years of experience using various massage techniques to help treat pain, relieve stress and promote total relaxation. She currently works out of two offices in the area and is listed on the American Massage Therapy Association Web site.
Lovell, 233-6762 Ann has a private practice in Lovell and she is listed on the American Massage Therapy Association Web site.
Love Life Massage & Wellness
Bridgton, 739-9978 www.justlovelifemassage.com Jessica Blasi, owner of Love Life Massage & Wellness, is a licensed massage therapist. In addition to seeing clients at her office in Bridgton, she also partners with Diane from the Dragonfly Room for spa parties and special events.
New Hampshire Institute for Therapeutic Art
Bridgton, 647-3794 nhita.com For those who are interested in pursuing massage therapy as a career, the NHITA offers comprehensive professional level certification programs accredited by the Commission on Massage Therapy Accreditation. Their instructors also have their own massage practices in the building.
nurture through nature
Used as complementary treatments or on their own, the noninvasive therapies offered by these practioners are great for balancing mind, body and spirit.
Heritage Integrated Healthcare
Bridgton, 647-8811 and Falmouth, 321-2100 www.heritageihc.com The doctors at Heritage Integrative Healthcare combine traditional chiropractic methods with complementary therapies to treat a wide range of muscular and joint problems.
Norway, 576-3681 www.susanskane.com Susan is a Reiki master practicing and teaching this unique form of holistic healing and relaxation therapy. She helps people reduce stress, heal from illness and promote general health and well-being. Susan has also successfully practiced Reiki for patients in hospitals.
Nurture through Nature
Denmark, 595-8260 ntnretreats.com Nature surrounds this “off-thegrid” retreat center and sanctuary of awareness, restoration and healing. NTN provides a space for simple, green living, holistic retreats and various workshops, as well as a traditional Finnish wood-fired sauna.
Sage of the Light
Naples, 693-3240 www.sageofthelight.com Sage of the Light is a holistic healing center offering a variety of alternative techniques, including massage, Reiki, polarity, and ear candling, as well as psychic medium readings and koshonic body stress release.
Bridgton, (603) 387-6879 or 647-3794 Nancy is a licensed massage therapist and head instructor at the New Hampshire Institute for Therapeutic Arts. She also practices Ayurvedic medicine and massage.
Harrison, 210-8584 Patricia is a certified foot reflexologist focusing on reducing foot and body stress. Reflexology is an ancient form of foot massage that also stimulates circulation and can improve physical harmony.
Crystal Clear Vibrations
Fryeburg, 239-595-2695 crystalclearvibrations.org Marci Starr Brennan provides sound healing through the power of singing crystal bowls, tuning forks and Reiki.
Swimming is excellent exercise any time of year and organized group “aquacise” sessions are both fun and invigorating, but if it’s relaxation you crave, few things work better than floating in a heated pool.
Colonial Mast Campground
Naples, 693-6652 www.colonialmast.com Take a dip in the beautiful indoor pool and hot tub available to the public year round during open swim time and aquacise programs. The pool and lodge may also be hired privately for parties and special events.
Skiing, ice skating and other winter activities, not to mention shoveling snow or slipping on the ice, can really wreak havoc on your body. If you have
damaged yourself or have aches and pains that get in your way, a visit to one of these physical therapists will set you straight on the road to recovery.
Richard Bader Physical Therapy
Bridgton, 647-5493; Norway, 743-5493; and Poland, 998-5493 www.rbpt.com The physical therapists at the offices of Richard Bader Physical Therapy are dedicated to providing the highest quality of care to their clients. RBPT’s qualified professionals offer individualized attention and cutting edge techniques to help you overcome injuries, deal with pain and regain your optimal health. RBPT staff are fully certified and have years of practice helping clients get back to normal and maintain their health after suffering a sports or work related injury, or an accident. “Experience the difference” at Richard Bader Physical Therapy and get yourself back on track.
Whether you want to develop six-pack abs, a killer bikini figure or just get fitter and feel better, these workout venues have the facilities and equipment to help you toward your goals.
Women’s Fitness Facilities 285 Main Street, Fryeburg, ME 935-4299 179 Main Street, South Paris, ME 743-2224
Lake Region Fitness
Bridgton, Kyle Conforti 647-5556 Located just off Route 302 heading toward Portland, Lake Region Fitness is a well-equipped gym open to members 24 hours a day.
dance and movement Getting up and moving around is the best way to shake off the dregs of winter. Start taking action by signing up for a dance or exercise class or join one of the groups practicing the meditative moves of tai chi.
The Ballroom is a Movement Arts Center located on Main Street in Harrison and offers a wide range of classes for all ages, abilities and interests. It features two spacious studios with unique architectural details, mirrored walls, excellent sound systems and great acoustics. The studios also have kitchen facilities and are available to rent for workshops and performances. Join the atmosphere of fun and artistic celebration and take part in one of the classes taught by expert professional instructors and performing artists. The Ballroom has something for everyone: from Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Tap and Ballroom & Latin Dance to Yoga, Aikido, Belly Dancing, Exercise classes and more! Check out the Web site for information about classes, workshops and other events.
Tai Chi Maine
Bridgton, 452-2239 www.taichiinmaine.com Tai Chi Maine offers tai chi sessions based on movements developed by Master Moy LinShin. Weekly donation-based meetings open to all are held year round at the Bridgton Town Hall, with additional outdoor sessions during the summer at Bicentennial Park in Denmark.
Taoist Tai Chi Society of the USA
Bridgton, 647-8142 www.taoist.org/usa/locations/ bridgton or newengland.usa. taoist.org/index.html A member of the New England chapter of the Taoist Tai Chi Society of the USA, the Bridgton branch on Depot Street offers daily classes for a range of different levels. The practice is based on the Fung Loy Kok Institute of Taoism and promotes the principle of all cultures and religions moving together in harmony.
Tending to one’s body and mind is, of course, essential on one’s journey through life, but every now and then a little retail therapy can work wonders. While I don’t recommend maxing out your credit cards on major purchases, you could try stopping by a second-hand store or thrift shop for a little something to boost your spirit with minimal expense.
Rt. 302, Windham, 892-1007 Once you feel physically and spiritually rejuvenated after your self-care treatments and movement activities, why not perk up your wardrobe for spring? You’ll be sure to find something that strikes your fancy at Kargos in Windham, featuring unique, boutique and vintage clothing for women.
Harry Barker’s Emporium Antique Group Shop and Harry Barker’s Emporium Too
Bridgton, 647-4500 http://harvesthills.org/harrybarkers-emporium/ These two group shops (one on Main Street and the other on Route 302 next to the Gazebo ice cream stand) offer hundreds of unique items to furnish and decorate your home
without breaking the bank. As an added bonus, some of the sales proceeds support the local Harvest Hills Animal Shelter. R
4th generation family-owned business names new president Chalmers Insurance Group, one of the region’s largest independent insurance agencies, has named Steven Cote as its President. Cote, who joined Chalmers in 2000 and previously led the company’s New Hampshire operations, began his new post on January 1st. Bruce Chalmers, who had served as President of the agency that has been owned by his family for 157 years, will retain an “of counsel” role in the agency and will also serve as Chairman of
the Board of Directors. His brother, William “Bill” Chalmers, will also be “of counsel” and serve as Treasurer of the Board. “Steve has demonstrated excellence in both his technical abilities and his ability to foster strong relationships,” said Bruce Chalmers. “He embodies the values that have guided Chalmers since my grandfather purchased this agency in the 1920s—namely, a focus on providing knowledgeable, professional services at a fair price, and being actively involved in the communities we serve.” “It is a tremendous honor to have been tapped by Bill and Bruce Chalmers to serve as our organization’s next president,” said Cote.
“Our new leadership team is excited about the challenges ahead. We are committed to taking the strategic steps necessary to assure that the Chalmers Insurance Group remains independently owned and family operated for the next generation and beyond.” Chalmers serves businesses and individuals from nine offices in Maine and New Hampshire. Companies interested in working with Chalmers can call 800-360-3000 to talk with an agent at the nearest office. More information about all of Chalmers Insurance Group’s commercial insurance, personal insurance and employee benefits is available online at www. ChalmersInsuranceGroup.com
In an era when corporations have jumped on the healthy eating bandwagon and stiffened the competition, locally-owned natural food stores demand more commitment from consumers as well as owners. Here in the lakes region, we’re fortunate to have two exceptional stores, each with its own unique offerings and atmosphere. by laurie lamountain & leigh macmillen hayes
Spice & Grain n 2008 when real estate was tanking, Kelisha (Keli) Ryan was a realtor and a single parent who had to make a decision. Before the recession, she had been a substitute teacher or taken parttime work to see her through the slack months, but this was no slacking period. This was a cliff, so after eight years in real estate she made the decision to get out of it and return to her roots in corporate. All the while, though, she maintained a passion for good health by taking herbal classes and practicing a healthy lifestyle. “I worked for a financial advisor as a temp for a while until I got laid off, but this (Spice & Grain) actually came to me while I was still in real estate. I had a listing in Cornish that I was trying to sell commercially and I thought, what does this town need? I started thinking about the listing and how it would make a great natural food store. I realized that in Cornish, Limington, Hiram . . . there’s
“It would be a better world if people just ate better. I think people make mistakes, they get angry, they get violent because they just don’t have a very good nutritional base, and then they don’t think clearly.”
nothing like that there. So I fantasized that maybe somebody might put one there someday, then I started taking the idea a little further. I started looking at vendors and keeping a notebook.” Then she met Ray. They fell in love and married. One weekend, when they were driving through Fryeburg en route to a hike in the White Mountains, Ray noticed that the former fire station at 17 Portland Street was for sale. He was considering the station from a real estate investment level and thinking they could rent it as a commercial space. Keli brought up her idea for a natural food store and, given that it was a much bigger venture than a rental property, Ray was cautiously optimistic. “Then I saw some shelves on Craigslist that looked like they might work in the space. There was an ad that read: Gift store, going out of business, everything must go. I said to Ray, ‘If I do a business plan and put it down on paper and we see that this is cost effective, would you look at it?’ My thought was that even if we didn’t open a business of our own, we could stage it for another business. We went and looked and Ray took one look at the shelves and said, ‘Let’s make them an offer.’” April marks three years that Keli and Ray Ryan have owned Spice and Grain in Fryeburg. “I’m here seven days a week. The only time I haven’t been here is the five days a year we’re closed for holidays. My objective is to make the store aesthetically pleasing, relaxing, and clean, so it’s not overwhelming and you get a good feeling when you’re shopping here. And when you leave, you leave happy.” To this end, there are half a dozen tables with comfortable chairs in the front of the store where you can quietly enjoy a soup and sandwich over a book or make use of the free WIFI. I ask her if she’s worried about burnout and Keli is quick to respond that she’s not. “I have days, but the people make it worth it. When people come in lakelivingmaine.com
and say, ‘I’m so glad you’re here’ and ‘Thank you for being here,’ it gives me strength. There are so many good people around here.” Three years and a lot of work later, Keli and Ray feel they’ve established themselves with the store. “We see the same faces and we know we’re a part of the community.” Ray recently left his job and is now working full time with Keli. “Initially, we wanted to be a resource, because we knew how hard it was for us to get the foods we wanted and had to travel so far. And we realized from talking to some of our clients who were lactose intolerant or gluten free or had diabetes, that if they had to travel to Whole Foods, that’s a journey.” In addition to gluten and lactose-free products, the store is well stocked with ancient grains, such as kamut, bulk herbs, teas and spices, organic wine, beer and coffees, local eggs, produce and honey, vegan and non-GMO offerings, supplements, essential oils, personal care and cleaning products. Sandwiches, soup-of-the day and baked goods are posted daily on their Web site: spiceandgrain.vpweb.com. If Keli’s first goal for Spice & Grain was to be a local resource for hard to source foods, a second is to educate customers on the importance of a healthy diet. The second floor over the store has been used to offer community education programs, and eventually cooking classes. “I can do a few basic ones, I’m not trained, but I think that’s a strength for me. I can say to people, ‘We’re going to make something together and I’m going to show you how easy it is. I’m just a regular person, I’ve never owned a restaurant and I don’t have a degree, but I have life’s history of healthy eating and I can share with you how to make a good, healthy meal.’” She hopes to reach out to families who live on a tight budget and are used to getting a pizza, and to say to them, “Here’s a pizza for $12 that you just bought your family. I just went downstairs and I got a pepper, a carrot, some tofu, and maybe some chicken or ground beef and it cost me the same or less, and in twenty minutes I’m going to show you how to make meals for two days out of this.”
As far as the dishes are concerned, she wants to show them that they don’t have to be gourmet to be good. In keeping with budget consciousness, she’s committed to classes being donation-based only, knowing full well that those families who would benefit most won’t come if it’s expensive. “Our motto is, you don’t have to be wealthy to be healthy, so we stand behind that. We just believe that we’ll be successful because we’re doing the right thing; that we’re putting some good out there and only good can come from that.” They plan to offer workshops, too, mostly nutrition-based. Possible offerings include mushrooming or wildcrafting herbs or a gluten-free workshop. Maybe an herbalist to conduct a spring detox tea workshop. Whatever the class or workshop, it needs to appeal to their sense that they’re giving back to the community. “It would be a better world if people just ate better. I think people make mistakes, they get angry, they get violent because they just don’t have a very good nutritional base, and then they don’t think clearly.” When asked if they have a five-year plan, she pauses and responds, “To be in existence.” I think that’ll happen. Morning Dew Natural Foods n a sense, I’ve always been doing this,” says Victoria Berry, owner of Morning Dew Natural Foods, Grocery and Deli in Bridgton. “I’ve been selling produce since I was nine years old.” Growing up, Victoria’s family owned Barton Farm on Route 113 in Fryeburg. While her father sold crops to bigger outfits, her mother recognized the community’s need to purchase fresh produce and dry beans. They opened a farm stand in their garage that overflowed onto the lawn where squashes and pumpkins were piled. As a young girl, Victoria was the one they sent out to wait on the customers. While a student at Fryeburg Academy, a career test indicated she should become a florist, home economics teacher or
occupational therapist. She went on to earn a degree in home economics and nutrition. Life’s journey found her continuing to take classes in macrobiotics and natural cooking. “I was so excited when I really started learning about natural and organic foods. I couldn’t stay in bed in the morning. I was up at 3 a.m. reading anything I could find—cook books, herb books, supplement manuals.” Eighteen years ago the path led her in a slightly different direction. While Victoria studied at the New Hampshire Institute for Therapeutic Arts, she began working part time for Dale Domingue at Morning Dew in its original location on Portland Street. Within a year, Dale asked Victoria to do some ordering and brought her on as a manager. When Dale moved out of the area, Victoria continued as manager, making even more decisions. And then Dale decided to sell the business. “Can I do this?” Victoria wondered. That was about eight years ago. Suddenly, life’s puzzle pieces began to fall into place—the career test that indicated an interest in retail, education and health all came together. Longtime customer Deborah Heffernan says, “Victoria has uncommon knowledge about nutrition and complementary supplements and will do her best to answer—or get the answer—to any question. What is important to her customers is interesting to her. She’s a problem-solver. For example, with all that is on her mind, she remembers that I am taking immunosuppressants for my heart transplant and steers me toward supplements that do not counter-indicate my drugs.” Listening to her customers comes easy to Victoria. Being a small shop, she has developed many one-on-one relationships like Deborah’s. “I feel that gives me a much better idea of what their needs are. I store it in my brain,” she says. Time and time again, she has surprised customers when she’s located a specialty item that they requested six months prior. Knowing what they want and don’t want in their natural foods helps in her decision making. She’s keen on bringing new products to the store, while simultaneously not replicating what other local shops stock. “I want to be as unique as I can be,” says Victoria. During the past few years, the economy has put a crunch on the business. It’s been a challenge to manage the overhead and decide how many employees are needed on the floor at any given time. “It’s hard in this economy, trying to do business and stand out. I’ve worked really hard over the last eighteen years.” She’s also felt the pinch with the trend for bigger stores to carry natural foods. Despite that, she’s upbeat about her shop. “I
“I have the best customers in the world. They become your friends. When they come through the front door, they’re happy to see me and I’m happy to see them. That makes coming to work every day easy.”
have the best customers in the world,” says Victoria. “They become your friends. When they come through the door, they’re happy to see me and I’m happy to see them. That makes coming to work every day easy.” Likewise, customers like the Heffernans enjoy the relationships they establish with Victoria and her crew of employees. She and the staff make each customer feel as if they have all the time in the world. As Deborah says, “She and her staff are very loving people.” In the shop, you’ll find a little bit of just about everything from organic produce to meat, eggs, dairy products, flours, jams, vitamins and supplements, ice cream, personal hygiene products, cleaning supplies and specialty items. The store also features a variety of gluten-free products for those with celiac disease or others who have wheat sensitivities. If you prefer to purchase by the case, there is a Buying Club, which is similar to a food co-op. Stop in to learn more about this. And then there’s the deli, which features Boars Head gluten-free meats and cheeses. It’s hard to wait until summer, but the Italian Job sandwich is a personal favorite. In the meantime, The Godfather suffices. The choices are numerous or you can build your own sandwich. Sign the back of your receipt and you might win a free one. While the shop was originally located closer to town, the move to 19 Sandy Creek Road has been a good one. Being situated beside the New Hampshire Institute for Therapeutic Arts and near the Birthwise Midwifery School also helps—students at both schools tend to gravitate to the Morning Dew. But this is a shop for everyone. One of the best features is the accessibility for elderly customers who can drive right up to the door and walk in without stairs impeding their entry. Victoria puts in many hours as she helps the rest of us seek a healthier life style. For instance, a local couple gives money to the Bridgton United Methodist Church food bank with the stipulation that they spend the donation at Morning Dew to encourage food recipients to explore healthful options for shopping in the area. Victoria searches for special bulk deals for the food bank and then attaches recipes explaining how to cook interesting meals from that donated food. And faithful customer Deborah Heffernan says, “Because of Victoria’s long-standing commitment to natural and local food in this area, we always shop first at the Morning Dew before we supplement our purchases elsewhere.” No matter what you need, the natural alternative is available at Morning Dew Natural Foods, Grocery and Deli. And Victoria and her crew are ready to assist you. R lakelivingmaine.com
n the summer of 2011, Denis and Susie Roy came to the conclusion that if they were going to secure a bit of lakefront Maine for their family, the window in time in which they had to do it was closing. Properties were being snatched up and they’d lost out on two or three they had looked at over the summer. After returning to California at summer’s end, they got a call from a realtor informing them she had a beautiful 13-acre listing on Long Lake they might be interested in buying. Since it was a much bigger property than they had in mind, Susie responded that they definitely were not, but the realtor persisted by calling Denis at work. Denis was of a different mind. Denis was born in Baltimore but grew up in Maine. His father had a thriving oral surgery practice in Lewiston, and Denis and his siblings spent their childhood summers in the western lakes region. That early experience, along with three siblings who now live within two hours of Bridgton and a childhood friend
who lives on the west shore of Long Lake, gave Denis emotional ties to the town and the lake. The fact that he spends the other three seasons working a highstress job as a financial consultant on “the other coast” makes his ties to Maine even stronger. According to Susie, Denis can sleep when he’s in Maine. Susie is a fifth-generation Californian, whose ancestors were drawn west by the Gold Rush, but she totally gets the reverse magnetism of Maine. Each summer, the couple and their three kids return to the Pine Tree State. Residents of Mill Valley, California, who have summered in Maine since the ‘80s, the Roys hadn’t even seen the property when they flew back East to sign papers. To their amazement, they discovered that in addition to the house, the property had its very own stream, gorgeous views, a garage, and, most importantly, a boathouse. Boathouses are like outhouses; once they’re gone, there’s no getting them back. The main house, however, they found dark and lacking
by laurie lamountain • photos by susie miller roy
in charm, but budget considerations, e.g. tuition for their three kids, put rebuilding or renovating it on the back burner. Rather than dwell on its deficiencies, the Roys engaged Winkelman Architects of Portland, Maine, to design an altogether separate dwelling that would ease the demands on the main house for the short term. The Bunkhouse, as they called it, would be evocative of the ones their two boys had stayed in during summers at Camp Skylemar in Naples. They wanted it to be fun without being fancy; utilitarian, yet comfortable. Strictly intended for summer use, the Bunkhouse is uninsulated and, like the bunkhouses at Camp Skylemar, is “shut down” in the fall and “opened up” in the spring. “The first thing we said to Will [ Winkelman] and Eric [Sokol] was, ‘We already own a suburban house. We don’t want to recreate that. We want something that is campy, something that is Maine. And it has to be easy to manage, especially for seasonal openings and closings.
I need a place where I can get up, put my swimsuit on and I’m in the lake,’” says Susie. They also stressed that it needed to accommodate numerous overnight guests and provide plenty of common space for entertaining, but at the same time allow for privacy. To achieve this dual purpose, there are two entries to the Bunkhouse. The
The Bunkhouse, as they called it, would be evocative of the ones their two boys had stayed in during summers at Camp Skylemar in Naples. They wanted it to be fun without being fancy; utilitarian, yet comfortable. Strictly intended for summer use, the Bunkhosue is uninsulated and, like the bunkhouses at Camp Skylemar, is “shut down” in the fall and “opened up” in spring.
entrance leading directly to the screened porch is considered the entertainment entrance, while the entrance into the laundry room on the other end of the building is considered utilitarian. Custom-built barn doors can effectively close off the laundry room and bathroom area as well as the bunkroom itself for even greater privacy. When not being used as a gathering place, the screened porch becomes a quiet haven to work on a puzzle or listen to music flowing from the wireless home audio system. Ironically, there is no kitchen in the Bunkhouse. “We tend to have very, very large meals. With Denis’s whole family there, we’re over twenty,” says Susie. There is, “Thank God,” a refrigerator with ice maker and a pantry, but the whole idea behind the dwelling is bringing it down to basics. When they get to it, they’ll invest their time and money in the kitchen of the main house. In the meantime, the Bunkhouse is the heart of the property. The Roys hired Bill Symonds of Casco, Maine, to build it. He hand built all the sliding windows in the main portion, as well as the ones on the screened porch that can be propped up and chained to the ceiling to take advantage of cross breezes coming from the lake. The interior trim and the floors in the bunkroom and porch are all natural wood treated with a mixture of linseed oil and turpentine. The laundry room and bathroom floors are covered with a light grey Sherman Williams floor paint for ease of cleaning. Indoor/outdoor rugs are scattered throughout and the furniture is “outside furniture brought inside” from Restoration Hardware that is no worse for the wear of wet teenagers coming straight from the lake. Galvanized lighting from Barn Electric in Florida and standing lamps from Schoolhouse Electric of Portland, Oregon, suit the space.
The bathroom, which Susie designed, features a Kohler utility sink that will accommodate more than one person at a time and the towel bar is a length of threaded iron pipe with S-hooks along it to hold numerous towels. The shower walls are lined with corrugated metal roofing. They originally toyed with the idea of an outdoor shower. Instead, the indoor shower they’ve designed is a way of bringing the outside in. The bunkroom itself can comfortably sleep eight, with full-size mattresses on the lower bunks and twins above. All of the bunks are designed to be easily dismantled and reconfigured should they choose. The walls of the Bunkhouse are adorned with prints by California printmaker Henry Evans (1918-1990). Evans is known for his brightly colored but spare linoleum-block botanical prints. His simple works evoke flowers, grasses, herbs and other botany found in gardens and the wild. They fit the space perfectly. The exterior is horizontal tongue and groove pine that will eventually be faced with shingles. The exterior trim and doors are painted black forest green. There is no basement and the foundation consists of granite posts on the outer four corners of the Bunkhouse with hidden concrete piers supporting it from underneath. A fire pit built by Susie and one of her sons provides an additional entertainment space that is especially good for making s’mores. The less-is-more style of the Bunkhouse is a reflection of Denis and Susie’s attitude toward their life in Maine. “This property is not just for our use,” states Susie, “It’s intended to be multi-generational and we’ve put a lot of thought into that.” The fact that Winkelman Architects and builder Bill Symonds so captured their style is testament to their level of communication. R lakelivingmaine.com
and Siberian irises to the raspberries and ears ago while househunting, somehigh-bush blueberries behind the barn and one told us about a place in town flower gardens in the backyard. Sadly, all that we should consider. It wasn’t were completely overgrown with weeds. for sale, but the woman who owned The connection continued with the fact it lived on the coast and the house hadn’t that an elderly friend had given us a yellow been occupied for years. rose to plant at our camp—he’d received We drove up the street to take a glimpse the rose many years prior from Jim Fitton. and felt drawn to this place hidden behind We negotiated a price with Anne and overgrown shrubs. Allen phoned the the house became our place to make a woman and asked if she’d consider selling. home. Immediately, we began to put our To our dismay, she wasn’t ready to let go. mark on it. Under the carpet that covered Our househunting continued, but that most floors, we discovered wide pine floor house kept beckoning even though we’d by leigh macmillen hayes boards, which we doggedly refinished. Peelnever stepped foot in it. The farmhouse ing away layers of wallpaper revealed wood and attached barn, yard with gardens and “A home is not a mere transient shelter; laths and horsehair plaster throughout and stonewalls, in-town setting at the end of a a brick chimney in the former dining room. dead-end street, with field and forest beits essence lies in the personalities of the Outside among the weeds, we watched yond—we could practically see our name people who live in it.” the succession of color from one season to hanging over the front door. the next. In their day, the gardens must Several months later as we considered h.l. mencken have made this a bit of a showplace. For making an offer on another house a few several years, we struggled to revive what miles out of town, the in-town place cononce was. In the process, we unearthed a stone border around one tinued to be on our minds. Again, Allen called the woman. She garden, a small tombstone and several utensils, bottles and pieces wasn’t home, but her husband said the first call had intrigued of pottery. Though the gardens retain their shape and recall that her—we’d planted the seed. first connection, they’ll never be the gorgeous splendors of our A few more phone conversations and we made plans to meet predecessors, but they have splashes of color that we find inviting. Anne Fitton Melrose at the in-town house. Our connection was We’ve also added land, purchasing property from neighbors strong. Her father, James Fitton, had owned Fitton Hardware, so that now we own more stonewalls and woodlands that invite which was located in downtown Bridgton in what we know refer quiet exploration and meditation. to as the Bridgton News building. Allen’s parents had purchased Much h a s ch a nge d si nc e we f i r s t spie d t he prop that building and the one next door in 1968. For several decades erty. Over time, and perhaps without actually expressthe adjacent building was the home of Hayes Hardware. ing it, we realized that we could never restore the house Anne’s mother, Gladys Fitton, was a school teacher—my forand gardens to what the Fittons had known and loved. mer occupation as well. After she passed away, Jim lived alone for But it’s those changes, those things that personalize a house, five years and then in the nursing home for another five. that make it a home. Our home still has the feel of the old house Remnants of their tenure were everywhere we looked-from we fell in love with. And . . . even with the updating we’ve done, it furniture to stacks of books and magazines, boxes of school lesstill doesn’t have all the modern conveniences. We like it that way. sons, his flannel bathrobe on the back of the bathroom door, a Our personalities, hobbies and habits spill over from room to single placemat on the kitchen table and cereal boxes in the food room and sometimes down the stairs. Our own stuff lays scatcupboard. We imagined him leaving one morning, expecting an tered about—but it’s that very stuff that adds to the hominess. outing with his daughter, when in reality, he was taken to the A house is a building with four corners, a shelter from the nursing home, never to return. elements and humanity. A home is . . . a sanctuary, a safe haven Despite the fact that we had to maneuver through narrow pas. . . a place to be yourself. sageways between piles of stuff, we fell in love with the layout of Someday down the road, we too will leave this home and it individual rooms, the light that shown through large windows, will be our time to never return. New owners will arrive filled the butler’s pantry between the kitchen and dining room, the with their youthful enthusiasm and vision for what the property summer kitchen and the barn. could be. We can only hope that as they make the house their Stepping outside, the Fittons’ stewardship of the land was own, they’ll feel some connection to those who came before. R visible everywhere, from the rock garden filled with primroses
A Little Piece of Ground A little piece of ground, once pasture, surrounds the ancient cape; it took a dozen gardens to make it home, one we share. The labor of the seasons
binds us surely as servitude; Bouquets of maple with accents of pine surround the gardeners grateful for frost; The tyrannical alphabet of vegetables
vanquished, perennials chilled to dormancy, now inner shoots stir, turn toward diminished light, raise expectations of a second harvest. —sharon smith abbott
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It quickly became clear that the best and ultimately most costeffective course of action was to strip the camp down to its studs and replace the rotted joists, stringers and sills.
Dirt to Done by laurie lamountain • photos by lorraine blais
he concept of “camp” used to be a one-season abode, occupied by humans in summer and mice during the remainder of the year. Opened up in late spring and shut down in early fall, it required nothing more than a small woodstove to chase the chill on a late summer evening—insulation, double-glazed windows and basement were not just unnecessary, they were superfluous. One such camp on Kezar Lake, built in the late 1930s and added on to in the ‘50s and ‘60s, became a six-month project for Blais Interiors this past year. The owners, who live in Connecticut but love Maine too much to make it a one-season destination, are avid skiers and spend as many weekends and winter vacations on the slopes as possible. Their camp on Kezar was 1,100 square feet of poorly insulated and unheated space, until they contacted friend and contractor Lorraine Blais to turn it into a four-season vacation home. In addition to converting the camp for year-round use, the owners wanted to expand the space to accommodate their growing family and visiting friends. Lorraine contracted a local excavator to jack the building up 12’ and pour an 8’ daylight basement that faces the lake and essentially doubles the living space. When they got the camp up in the air, however, they discovered that mice weren’t the only critters who had set up housekeeping. Runoff from above the property had been coursing under the house for decades, and the cinder blocks and granite fieldstone propping it up were no match for the legions of carpenter ants that had slowly but surely wreaked havoc
with the sills. It quickly became clear that the best and ultimately most cost-effective course of action was to strip the camp down to its studs and replace the rotted joists, stringers and sills. There’s something to be said for starting over. Stripping the camp down to bare bones made it possible to apply 21st-century building technology and upgrade the performance of the camp for year-round use. To eliminate any future problems with moisture, the foundation was wrapped with an impervious rubber membrane and then encased in rigid foam insulation. High-performance windows were custom made to match the design and layout of the single-glazed windows they replaced. Mainely Foam applied closed-cell foam insulation throughout the walls and roof system. Radiant heat lines were run through the cement floor and a propanefired boiler was installed. The original 100 amp knob and tube wiring was replaced with new 200 amp wiring. The result is a super-insulated, energy-efficient vacation home that the owners don’t have to worry about when they’re not there, and is ready to receive them whenever they choose. The one thing that didn’t change was the footprint. Both the owners and Lorraine felt that if anything besides the daylight basement was added it would no longer have that “camp” feeling. They did, however, raise the height of the kitchen by adding a gable peak of Douglas fir beams above it. This relatively small change had the dual advantage of bringing a lot more natural light in and making the camp seem more spacious. What was saved by not expanding the
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Both the owners and Lorraine felt that if anything besides the daylight basement was added it would no longer have that “camp” feeling. They did, however, raise the height of the kitchen by adding a gable peak of Douglas fir beams above it.
footprint was lavished on details, such as the wrought iron railing with pine cones and tassels made for the stairwell by Mike Ridlon of Casco. In the master bedroom suite, three panels of leaded stained antique glass that Lorraine found in a local second-hand shop were set in the wall separating the bedroom and bath. Not only do they extend natural light from one room to the other, it turns out they also improve cell phone reception! In the downstairs bunkroom, Lorraine designed colored lights along the bottoms of the lower bunks to serve as night lights. A locker room adjacent to the bunkroom provides each member of the household a locker with their name on it. In all cases the details are functional as well as ornamental. Other details are strictly aesthetic, such as the mural in the downstairs bathroom painted by local artist Sheree Kendrick.
Instead of all-wooden doors for the custom kitchen cabinets, Lorraine chose amber stained glass inserts to mimic the granite countertops. Jesse Hersey, a Yarmouth-based builder, was lead carpenter on the job and Lorraine credits his craftsmanship and professionalism with the fact that they were able to maintain quality while sticking to a strict deadline. Hancock Lumber supplied most of the building materials. Lorraine was given a budget that included furnishing and stocking the house to the extent that the owners merely had to turn a key upon arrival. It’s why she fondly refers to projects like this as “Dirt to Done,” and, when the owners put all their trust in her ability to design/build, as they did in this case, it’s the kind of job where her expertise shines throughout. R lakelivingmaine.com
Cooking for Health At the Northern New England Home, Garden & Flower Show
eld each May on the site of Maine’s largest agricultural fair in Fryeburg, the Northern New England Home, Flower & Garden Show is an excellent way to celebrate the arrival of spring. With seven buildings and five acres of outdoor displays, the show attracts more than 11,000 people to take in 300+ home products and services and get advice from the pros. What sets this three-day home show apart is that producer Karla Ficker makes sure it’s filled with a variety of interesting and innovative products—many of them produced right here in Maine—as well as dozens of great demonstrations, workshops and seminars. The ever-popular Meet the Chefs cooking series is a show highlight and this year’s theme of “Cooking for a Healthier Lifestyle” features guest chefs, bakers and growers from some of the most popular kitchens throughout Maine and New Hampshire. Presenters will demonstrate recipes that are not only healthy, but have the added advantage of being disease preventive through the incorporation of whole grains, olive oil and fresh foods. Bridgton Hospital, a member of the Central Maine Medical Family, in conjunction with the hospital’s diabetes management clinic, is proud to be the lead sponsor of the series. Karla has focused her selection this year on chefs and growers who use sustainable growing practices themselves or buy from local growers. They have additionally been given the charge to feature recipes that are relatively easy to prepare and will fit within a family budget. The resounding message that people will come away from the demonstrations with is that simply and healthfully prepared foods not only taste better, but they discourage disease and are accessible to just about anyone. To borrow an earlier quote in this issue, “You don’t have to be wealthy to be healthy.” Michael Jubinsky of Stone Turtle Baking and Cooking School in Lyman, Maine, will present a classic Italian bread made with semolina and all-purpose flour.
“We really wanted to call our school the ‘Stone Turtle Baking, Cooking, PizzaMaking, Community Oven, Team Building, OMG, I’m having a great time, Woodfired Oven Learning Center,’ but it wouldn’t fit,” says Michael about the school that he and his wife, Sandy, founded in 2006. Michael has taught various aspects of baking, specializing in yeast breads, for more than forty years, and Sandy is a Culinary Arts graduate who has been a bakeshop manager, pastry chef, food writer and certified “Food Taster.” Pat O’Brien of Fiore Artisan Olive Oils & Vinegars will prepare a recipe that features Fiore ultra-premium, extra virgin olive oil and aged balsamic vinegar. He and his wife, Nancy, opened their first tasting room and retail store in Bar Harbor, Maine, in 2009. Encouraged by the enthusiastic response of their customers, they launched a second store in Rockland and a third in Freeport. All three stores, as well as tasting rooms in Lewiston and Bangor, are open year round. In the spirit of collaboration, the O’Briens work with a growing number of local and regional businesses including vineyards and wine purveyors, as well as leading chefs and caterers. They were awarded “Best Around the World” Tasting Room in New England 2012 by Yankee magazine and Maine’s Small Business Association “2013 Woman Owned Small Business of the Year.” Eric Milligan from New Hampshire Mushroom Company will demonstrate
three ways to sauté mushrooms as toppings for focaccia or ciabatta. King oysters, bear’s head and chestnut mushrooms are just three of the varieties he grows at his farm in Tamworth, New Hampshire. Eric is quick to point out that he’s not a professional chef, but thoroughly enjoys good food. After moving to New Hampshire thirteen years ago he started foraging wild mushrooms and studying mycology as a hobby. Two years ago, he and his partners decided to turn their hobby into a business, hence New Hampshire Mushroom Company was formed. Chef Kerry Altiero of Cafe Miranda in Rockland will prepare a dish with lobster provided by the Maine Lobster Promotion Organization. Kerry was voted “2012 Maine Lobster Chef of the Year” and was awarded the “2013 Harvest on the Harbor Best Farm to Table Restaurant,” so this dish promises to be good. These are just four of the many guest chefs and presenters who are scheduled throughout the three days of the show. Others include Josh Burkett, Executive Chef of the Black Cap Grille in North Conway, New Hampshire; Tim Karu of the Mercury Inn in Portland, Maine; Alanna Doughty of Pietree Orchard in Sweden, Maine; Jean Kerr of New England Flavor magazine; and Christian Bassett of Pearson’s Cafe at St. Joseph’s College. (For a complete Meet the Chef schedule, visit www.homegardenflowershow.com/ meet-the-chefs/)
The best way to offset the cost of fresh, organic vegetables and fruits is to grow your own, and the All Things Growing seminars, presented by the Maine Landscape and Nurserymen’s Association and the Northeast Organic Farmers Association of New Hampshire, are designed to do just that. And whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, the Garden Marketplace has something to offer. Here you’ll find everything from zone-hardy, ready-to-plant perennials,
annuals and vegetable seedlings to flower pots and containers. While Meet the Chefs, All Things Growing and the Garden Marketplace are all about growing your own food and eating well, many of the exhibits are about living wisely. If you’re looking for ways to shrink your carbon footprint and your fuel budget, you’ll find dozens of energy saving, eco-friendly, cost-efficient and state-of-the-art alternative energy solutions at the show. Additionally, the
artisan offerings have expanded in recent years to make the show an ideal one-stop shopping spot for unique, locally produced gifts for any occasion. So, mark your calendars for an event that can help you eat well and live wisely, which is both good for you and good for the planet. The show runs from May 1719. For more information visit: www. homegardenflowershow.com or call 800359-2033. Become a friend of the show on Facebook. R
basic pizza dough
plastic wrap. Let rest at room temperature for about 15 minutes (up to 1 hour) to let the gluten relax. NOTE: You can refrigerate pieces overnight or freeze pieces (well wrapped) for use later. Remove pieces from the refrigerator about 2 hours before using. Pre-heat oven and pizza stone or tiles for at least an hour, at 500º F (or higher), before shaping pizzas into pizza shells (stretch, spin or roll). Place shells on a semolina-covered peel, reverse side of a baking sheet-pan or parchment paper, cover with toppings and bake on a pre-heated pizza stone or tiles. Watch pizzas carefully—bottom should be well browned and the edges bubbly. Let the crust take on good color before removing from oven. ©2014 Stone Turtle Baking and Cooking School
grilled king oyster mushrooms on ciabatta
This dough works for thin-crust pizza as well as the slightly thicker Sicilian-style pizza. It is also excellent when used for calzones and strombolli and can be baked on a gas or charcoal grill.
3/4 c water (75º F) 1 c unbleached all-purpose flour 1/4 tsp instant dissolving yeast In a 4-cup bowl combine water, flour and yeast. Mix well, cover with plastic wrap and a clean towel. Set aside to proof at least 4 hours, preferably overnight (about 12 hours).
1 c water (75º F) 1 tbsp kosher salt 2 tbsp Fiore olive oil 2 tsp instant dissolving yeast (1 packet split between sponge and dough) 3 tbsp whole wheat flour (optional) 3 1/2 - 4 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour 2 Tbsp honey (if using household oven) Semolina or corn meal Pour water around the edge of the sponge and transfer the sponge to a large bowl. Add salt and olive oil (and honey if using). Add whole wheat flour and 2 cups of all-purpose flour. Add yeast and mix well. Add the remaining flour, one cup at a time, until the dough comes cleanly away from the sides of the bowl. The dough should be slightly sticky and soft. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and scrape out the bowl. Lightly oil the bowl and set aside. Knead the dough, using only enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to your hands and the board. Knead until the dough is smooth and supple. Return to bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let proof until doubled, about 45 minutes. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, gently deflate and divide into five (5) pieces. Lightly coat each piece with olive oil, place on a tray and cover with
honey balsamic roasted vegetables
3 Tbsp FIORE medium intensity extra virgin olive oil 1 1/2 c assorted fresh vegetables 1 tbsp FIORE balsamic vinegar 1 tsp honey 1/2 tsp dried thyme, crushed salt and pepper to taste Preheat oven to 425˚. Rough chop vegetables, using any combination of the following: zucchini, bell peppers (red, green or yellow), red onion, white or portobello mushrooms and carrots. In a broiler pan, without the rack, combine all ingredients. Roast 25 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring once. Serves 2.
8 King oyster mushrooms 1/4 c Fiore extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling loaf ciabatta bread 3 large cloves garlic, peeled sea salt and freshly ground pepper Italian parsley for garnish Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Wipe mushrooms with a damp cloth to clean and trim ends. Cut into approximately 1⁄4 inch wide lengthwise strips and brush with olive oil on both sides. Season with sea salt and pepper. Oil grill grates. Place mushroom slices on grill to cook, turning once. Cook about 3-4 minutes on each side. Move to indirect heat to continue slow cooking while preparing bread. Slice ciabatta in half lengthwise, then cut each half into 1-inch slices. Grill the ciabatta slices, cut side down until they are golden and crisp, about 2 minutes. Working quickly, drizzle the toasted sides with extra-virgin olive oil. Rub the garlic cloves over the grilled bread (it’s important to do this while the bread is still hot or warm, otherwise the garlic won’t melt into the bread.) Top grilled ciabatta with sliced mushrooms, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and chopped Italian parsley. Serve immediately while warm. A hearty red wine is a great match for this appetizer. Chef Steffani Adaska’s Note: a sprinkle of Reggiano tastes great on top, too. lakelivingmaine.com
Bridgton Urgent Care
Because bumps and bruises and ‘just not feeling so great’ can happen…even on vacation.
Bridgton Urgent Care for minor emergencies. Bridgton Urgent Care for walk-in medical care. Including: Colds, flu-like symptoms, hay fever, minor allergies, bruises, bumps, skin lumps, bronchitis, coughs, cuts and lacerations, earache or ear pain, muscle aches, blisters, sinusitis, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, insect bites and stings, muscle aches, sore throat, sports injuries, sunburn, eye irritation, joint pain. It’s always best to call your doctor when you need medical care, but when your doctor isn’t available Bridgton Urgent Care is for walk in care today. Our team of healthcare professionals will care for you as quickly as possibly and follow up with a record to your regular provider.
Open Monday through Friday 5PM to 9PM Saturday 8AM to 1PM 207-647-6166 Located in the Specialty Clinic Wing of Bridgton Hospital, 10 Hospital Drive (off South HIgh Street)
Learn more about our new
Urgent Care at www.bridgtonhospital.org
For Major Emergencies please use the Bridgton Hospital Emergency Department. Emergency Department is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. lakelivingmaine.com