August 18, 2019

Hampden readies for Make a Difference Day

One week from today, Saturday, Oct. 23, is national Make A Difference Day.

That day, I will devote my column to those who have made a difference in the lives of others through the words of individuals who have written the Bangor Daily News to thank them for their help and assistance.

Today, Melanie Sachs and others in Hampden are preparing for its Make a Difference Day and are asking for your help.

Sachs wrote that a coalition of five churches and the town of Hampden have planned a Walk-a-thon that begins with registration at 7:45 a.m., and the walk at 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, at Hampden Academy.

Entrants can walk either a 1.2-mile course or what organizers are calling a “Four Mile Square” in Hampden, and suggest you include family, friends and co-workers in this event.

The purpose of the Walk-a-thon is to raise money for the “Help for Hampden” fund, created two years ago to help residents of Hampden, Winterport and Newburgh who unexpectedly find themselves in need of funds to purchase fuel, food, medicine or other basic necessities.

Sachs pointed out that the Hampden Food Cupboard has seen a 108 percent increase in the number of families applying for assistance, from January to September, over last year.

Walk-a-thon participants are asked to collect pledges and are urged to bring a personal care item or nonperishable food product on the day of the walk.

Those donations will be given either to the Hampden Food Cupboard or the Oasis Food Project.

For more information about this Make A Difference Day event, call Hampden Congregational Church at 862-5248.

The public will have several opportunities to hear and see composer Thomas Oboe Lee, commissioned by the American Composers Forum to write Symphony No. 6, “The Penobscot River,” for the Bangor Symphony Orchestra as part of its Continental Harmony program.

Lee will present a free lecture at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 18, in the Conference Room of the Bangor Public Library, 145 Harlow St.

Joining Lee will be assistant director of the Maine Folklife Center, Dr. Pauleena MacDougall, and Phillip Attean, who is the fifth-generation great-grandson of Penobscot Gov. Joseph Attean.

Lee will tell the “story-behind-the-story” of his composition about the history of Bangor at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 20, at Borders on Bangor Mall Boulevard.

The BSO will present the world premiere of this symphony at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Bangor Auditorium.

Thanks to the support of private foundations and corporate partners, the concert is free and open to the public.

It features the University of Maine Singers, the Oratorio Society, Bangor High School Chorus and the Robinson Ballet and, during intermission, a performance by the Planet Pan Steel Drum Band.

John Holmes of Families and Children Together in Bangor reports that the FACT Dinner Auction will offer attendees a “nice, fun, evening out” in addition to the opportunity to support the programs of that organization.

FACT provides services for families and children ranging from adoptions to foster care and supervised visitations.

The FACT Dinner Auction begins at 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, at Bangor Motor Inn on Hogan Road.

The event opens with a silent auction. Dinner will be served at 7 p.m. and the live auction follows the meal.

Tickets are $20 per person, and all proceeds benefit children’s programming of FACT.

Holmes reports that some of the items up for bid are theater, symphony and sports tickets, original artwork and condominium rentals at Sugarloaf/USA.

For more information, or to make your reservation, call 941-2347.

Here is a request for volunteer help that can be done in the comfort of your home.

Erin Rice of Pine Tree Society wrote me that The Kids Project, the adaptive equipment program of PTS, “is seeking volunteers who can sew cushions and straps for adaptive chairs that are made, especially, for children with disabilities.”

She informs readers that “we provide the materials; you provide your time and talent. This unique volunteer program provides adaptive equipment to children with disabilities at costs much lower than commercially available equipment.”

She added that this opportunity “is open to people all over Maine, and we would, specifically, like to reach people in the Bangor area.”

Rice added that your volunteer effort “will help a child with disabilities achieve greater success and independence.”

For more information call Teresa Berkowitz, 443-3341, ext. 104, or e-mail

Joni Averill, Bangor Daily News, P.O. Box 1329, Bangor 04402; 990-8288.

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