Community News – Kennebunkport Conservation Trust to host fisheries discussion

Kennebunkport Conservation Trust and Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association will host a presentation about local fisheries on Dec. 5 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust.

Kennebunkport Conservation Trust and Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association will host a presentation about local fisheries on Dec. 5 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Dan King photo

The session, titled Getting to Know Our Town’s Waterfront, will explore the different aspects of Kennebunkport’s waterfront. It will be a conversational event designed to foster communications between those who work on and manage the town’s working waterfront and the tourist industry. The discussion will include how the industries can work together amidst a changing environment while educating the next generation about the challenges involved.

Panelists will include representatives from the waterfront tourism industry, a town planner, a commercial fisherman, and students from Kennebunk High School’s Gulf of Maine Field Studies class. The conversation will be moderated by Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association’s Director of Community Programs, Monique Coombs.

Samples of locally-sourced seafood along with Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association’s Maine Coast Monkfish Stew will be served. The stew is produced by Hurricane Soups & Premium Chowders in Greene, Maine, using sustainably harvested monkfish along with Maine produce and dairy.

The proceeds from the sale of the stew benefit the association’s Fishermen Feeding Mainers program that donates fresh seafood to schools, food pantries and community groups statewide.

The event is free to attend in person or by Zoom, but registration is required. To register, visit

Graves Library hosts holiday activities

Graves Library will host Cookies, Cider and Cellar on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Visitors are invited to the library on Maine Street in Kennebunkport for holiday shopping.

The Book Cellar is stocked with new and gently used books, puzzles, note cards, mugs, hats, CDs and more. Visitors are encouraged to find a gift for a swap, host or hostess, or lovers of all things Kennebunkport, including the two-volume set of the “History of Kennebunkport,” by local resident and historian, Joyce Butler. Drop in on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for cookies and cider.

The library is open Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and is located at 18 Maine St.

Story Time with Mrs. Claus is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 16 from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Mrs. Claus will read holiday stories to  friends and families. She will arrive with lights flashing. The event features songs and treats, too.

For more information, call 207-967-2778 or visit

Waterhouse Center to host skate swap

A Skate Swap will be held at the Waterhouse Center in Kennebunk on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Participants should bring ice skates to swap only (11 a.m. to noon) and swap or purchase (noon to 1 p.m.) for a minimum donation of $10. One pair per person with priority given to children.

Also, if those with new or gently used ice skates to donate can call 207-604-1326 for more information.

Rotary, Interact Club collaborate for food collection

Father, daughter and grandson worked side-by-side to count cans and packages of food collected by Middle School of the Kennebunks students in the first major service project of the new Rotary-sponsored Interact Club.

From left, Brady Andrews, Laura Andrews and Bob Wester. Courtesy photo

Bob Wester, Laura Andrews and Brady Andrews, a seventh grader and a high honors student, counted the donations in a contest between middle school classrooms.

Brady Andrews and five other Interact members coordinated the food drive. They created promotional advertising, delivered collection boxes to classrooms, and gathered all the boxes for counting. A total of 1,011 items were collected and delivered to Community Outreach Services, the food pantry in Kennebunk. Ms. Kasprzak’s sixth-grade classroom was the grand winner with 121 items collected. The Interact Club will sponsor a party for that classroom.

Interact, is a new service club at the Middle School of the Kennebunks sponsored by Kennebunk Portside Rotary. Laura Andrews, senior payment resolution specialist for Northeast Credit Union, led the effort to form the club. She acts as advisor to the program that gives young people an opportunity to participate in fun and meaningful service projects while developing leadership skills and meeting new friends.

Interact is traditionally a high school program and there is an active club at Kennebunk High School. Kennebunk Portside Rotary wanted to give younger students an opportunity to participate in such a program.

Teen mystery badge bundles available at library

Students looking for new pins to decorate coats, bookbags, can visit Kennebunk Free Library starting Dec. 9 at 9:30 a.m., when mystery badge bundles will be available in the Teen Room (Walker Room). Filled with pins featuring Pokemon characters, Kermit the Frog, Animals on Computers, and all sorts of other things, the bundles are a surprise for the holiday season. Available while bundles last. The mystery bundle pick-up event is free, wheelchair accessible, and open to teens ages 10 and older. For more information,, see Miss Emmaline in the Children’s Room, or call at 207-985-2173.

Funky Divas of Gospel Christmas concert at Church on the Cape

The Keith McClelland Community Music Foundation will host The Funky Divas of Gospel for a free concert at Church on the Cape, 3 Langsford Road, Cape Porpoise, Kennebunkport, on Saturday Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.

The Funky Divas of Gospel will appear for a free concert at Church on the Cape in Cape Porpoise on Saturday, Dec. 10 at 2 p.m. Courtesy photo

The one-hour Christmas show of familiar holiday songs and carols combines the musicianship and vocal harmonies for which they are known, with traditional and nostalgic music of the season.

The group of seven features three seacoast area singers Diane Arabian, Carolyn Hutton, and Vicky Poland backed up by the Funky band: Dan Poland on guitar and vocals, Tom Kesel on bass, Pete Leavenworth playing pedal steel, dobro, and banjo, and Sean Haney percussionist.

Funky Divas performances are suitable for all ages. They regularly perform in music festivals, outdoor summer events, benefits, and church services of all denominations. For more Divas information visit or find them on Facebook at

Church on the Cape is wheelchair accessible. Parking is available on Langsford Road, and behind Bradbury Brothers Market, 167 Main St., Kennebunkport.

The Keith McClelland Community Music Foundation is dedicated to encouraging, sponsoring, and supporting the performance and appreciation of music in the Kennebunks. It is named in memory of Keith McClelland, beloved music educator in the local schools, director of multiple choirs, and organist at Church on the Cape and South Congregational Church.

For more information, email [email protected]

Kennebunk Free Library announces upcoming activities

Santa goes for a skate at the Waterhouse Center on Saturday, Nov. 26, during Christmas in Kennebunk festivities. Cynthia Fitzmorris photo

It’s time for Story time. On Mondays at 10 a.m., join Miss Maria inside the library for songs, stories and rhymes. Story times are designed for ages 2-5, but everyone is welcome. The events are free and wheelchair accessible.

For more information, call 985-2173. Upcoming story time dates include: Dec. 5, Dec. 12 and Dec. 19.

Chill Gaming

Ready to chill, eat snacks, and play some games? Come hang out with friends, test out gaming card decks, play on the library’s Nintendo Switch, try out new RPG board games, or anything else in between for Chill Gaming. Because of the holiday break, the group will meet on Thursday, Dec. 8 and Dec. 22 from 3:30  to 4:30 p.m.

There will be games provided by the library, but players are free to bring their own games, learn new games at their own pace, or just hang out and listen to some lofi beats. The event is free, wheelchair accessible, and open to teens ages 10 and older. For more information, see Miss Emmaline in the Children’s Room, or call at 207-985-2173.

Gingerbread person kits

December’s STEAM Kit from Kennebunk Free Library has a sweet twist. During the month of December, the library will have all the supplies needed to decorate a gingerbread person. Kits will be available starting Thursday, Dec. 1, and will be available while supplies last. Decorating a gingerbread person encourages spatial visualization, problem solving and artistic creativity. Each kit will include a gingerbread person, icing, and some candies for decorating. Participants are encouraged to take a picture of the creation and email to [email protected] The library will create a virtual display with the photos.

For more information, call 985-2173 or visit


Animals intersect with humanity in infinite ways. That’s the premise of local dog trainer, Melissa McCue-McGrath’s podcast, BewilderBeasts. On Tuesday, Dec. 6 at 6:30 p.m., McCue-McGrath will be at Kennebunk Free Library to introduce animals who do unusual jobs for humans, including goats who prevent forest fires in California, bees who are trained to find landmines in Croatia, and dogs who find whale poop to help scientists save orcas. There will also be a discussion about the often misunderstood job descriptions between service dogs, emotional support animals, and therapy dogs.

The event is appropriate for kids and adults of all ages. McCue-McGrath grew up in what she considers an “accidental dog sledding family” in Washington, Maine, before working with pet dogs in urban centers. She spent 18 years training dogs and working difficult behavior cases in Boston, where she wrote her first book, “Considerations for the City Dog,” the first training book that keeps the challenges of working with pet dogs in busy environments in mind. In 2020, she started the podcast BewilderBeasts to help keep kids interested in science and history through an animal lens which is now heard all over the world. McCue-McGrath continues training dogs at the Animal Welfare Society, including sports classes, and she remains the vice president of the New England Dog Training Club in Boston, the oldest AKC affiliated dog obedience club in the country.

For more information, 207-985-2173 or email [email protected]

Celtic Christmas

Jeff Snow Courtesy photo

On Wednesday, Dec. 14 at 6:30 p.m., Kennebunk Free Library will host A Gathering of Celtic and Christmas – songs and stories by performer Jeff Snow. The event will feature a fire with wine and light refreshments served.

Snow is a multi-instrumentalist who shares the music, and the stories behind the music, of Scotland, Ireland and England.

Growing up in a home where old Scottish folk songs were the everyday sounds, Jeff developed an early love for Celtic music. Much of the history of these lands was preserved in song. Patrons will see singing, laughing, lots of smiles and perhaps a few tears as they travel through time.

In concert Snow plays the guitar, autoharp and bouzouki. He can also find his way around a drum set and most of the percussion family. He is a private guitar teacher and the author of the teaching method Guitar Basics and Beyond. He was featured in the December 2006 issue of Acoustic Guitar Magazine and is a contributing writer for Acoustic Guitar and Autoharp Quarterly magazines.

When not singing, playing, or teaching Snow can often be found taking photographs, on a golf course or a beach.

For more information, call 207-985-2173 or email [email protected]

Housing trust concert, auction is Dec. 8

Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust will host a Homes for the Holidays concert and live auction on Dec. 8 at 6 p.m. at Vinegar Hill Music Theatre in Arundel. The show will feature holiday musical performances by Women of Note, Ocean Ave Band, and Dock Squares.

During the intermission, Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust will host a live auction including resort and hotel stays with the Nonantum Resort, Lincoln Hotel, and Sandy Pines Campground, dining at the Nonantum and Batson River, a sail on the Schooner Elizabeth, a package of fun from the town of Kennebunkport, including a ride on the fire truck to work or school, and more.

The event is made possible thanks to sponsors Kennebunk Savings, Kennebunkport Resort Collective, Vinegar Hill Music Theatre, Mascoma Bank, Atlantic Hospitality, and Big Horizon Mortgage. All proceeds from the event support the work of the Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust.

With the cost of housing being the number one issue for many in Kennebunkport and the state of Maine, the trust’s vision is to create 25 new permanently affordable, year-round homes by 2025. The homes will support teachers, first responders, lobstermen, civic volunteers, year-round workforce, families, and retiring seniors.

Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust has just celebrated completion of its first, six-house neighborhood, Heritage Woods and is now raising funds for land acquisition and development for a second, 10-house neighborhood planned for completion in late 2024.

“Affordable housing is about more than creating safe, stable spaces for people to live, it’s also
about creating flourishing communities” said Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust Executive Director, Larissa Crockett.
“Kennebunkport Heritage Housing Trust’s past success shows this work is possible even in small, coastal towns where housing
prices are outside the reach of most people. Together, we can ensure Kennebunkport’s future as a place for people from young families to retirees to live, work, and thrive.”

For more information, visit

Kennebunk Free Library announces December exhibit

Kennebunk Free Library announced its next Speers Gallery exhibit, Student Images, featuring photographs by students around the world facilitated by Picture Pals, an organization co-founded by Kennebunkport residents Lorraine and Paul Star and their lifelong friend Joe Highland, who “has dedicated his life to helping others to have a better future.”

According to a Nov. 17 news release, “After retiring from teaching, Paul and Lorraine, who are avid photographers and travelers, decided it was time to give back. Through Picture Plans, they offer photography workshops for youth in low resource and underserved communities throughout the world.”

The exhibit will showcase Picture Plans student work produced during workshops in Mexico, Afghanistan, India, Nepal, Cambodia, Liberia, and the Cherokee Nation.

The students who took the photographs are between ages 15-18 and, previous to Picture Pals, had no formal training in photography. According to Paul, the students “embraced the camera and the photography courses. They prepared themselves to give the world a glimpse into their soul.”

The exhibit runs through Dec. 31, and the public is invited to a reception on Wednesday, Dec. 14 from 5 to 7 p.m.

The public is invited to view the exhibit in the library’s Speers Gallery at 112 Main St., Kennebunk, during regular library hours when the gallery is not in use for library programs. For current hours and gallery access, visit

Wells Chamber to host 37th annual Christmas Parade

Wells Chamber of Commerce announced that its 37th annual Christmas Parade is scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 11. The parade steps off at 2 p.m. from Wells Plaza and proceeds north on Route 1 to Wells Junior High School.

The Primary Event Sponsor is Kennebunk Savings, Silver Sponsors are Avita of Wells and DF Richard Energy. Bronze Sponsor is the Rotary Club of Wells.

The grand marshal for the parade will be Wells resident Kathy Wright. Kathy is a graduate of Wells High School, was the secretary/office manager for the Wells Chamber and Wells Information Center from 1984-1988, served on the Wells Board of Selectmen and was the coordinator of the Wells Christmas Parade for 21 years.

There will be cookies and cocoa to be had the day of the parade – Coldwell Banker Realty in Kennebunk will serve at the starting point and York Hospital will be in front of the junior high school gymnasium at the conclusion of the parade.

Families, youth groups, civic groups, businesses and individuals are invited to participate. There is no charge to participate. For more information on the parade, contact the Wells Chamber of Commerce at 207-646-2451 or visit

Holiday Showcase premieres at museum

The Brick Store Museum’s annual Holiday Showcase pays homage to the region’s independent artists and creators. Holiday Showcase is a month-long event inside the museum’s galleries that features the works of artists and crafters. The showcase opened Nov. 26 and ends Tuesday, Dec. 21.

During the entire month, admission to the museum will be free courtesy of sponsor H.M. Payson, as a holiday gift to the communities. Visitors will be able to visit the museum’s newest exhibitions and shop for locally-made gifts and artwork supporting both individual artists in York County and the Brick Store Museum’s educational mission in the community.

The museum also has an option for those not comfortable coming indoors during the pandemic – artwork and special pieces will be featured on the museum’s social media feeds and via its new online store, the Museum Mercantile, which can be found at

The Holiday Showcase is open anytime the museum is open (closed only Mondays). More information can be found at, or at the museum’s front desk at 117 Main St. in Kennebunk.

More than 20 regional artists have joined the showcase to display paper art, jewelry, basketry, custom drawings, sculpture, fiber and textile works, photography, handmade soaps and sachets, candles, accessories, wood carvings and more.

Elder Elves holiday gift program is underway

The Center is once again in full holiday swing, preparing for its community support program, Elder Elves.

The Elder Elves are a group of volunteers who assemble gift bags for seniors in the community who are isolated during the holidays. They solicit donations from businesses and the community to ensure that everyone can have a happy holiday season. The Elder Elves have been operating for 20-plus years and assemble 70 bags each year.

Members of the community are invited to stop by the Center during business hours (Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.) and pick up a gift tag from the Elder Elves giving tree. There is also an Elder Elves giving tree at Kennebunk Savings Bank on Western Avenue in Lower Village Kennebunk. All gifts must be returned by Nov. 30.

The Center works with the general assistance programs in Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, and Arundel as well as several other community outreach groups, to determine which senior residents would benefit from this program.

The Center is a meeting place for adults 50 and older to explore their interests through programs, social connection and to make a difference through volunteer opportunities that strengthen the community. For more information,  visit, on social media @CenterKennebunk, call 207-967-8514, or visit 175 Port Road in Kennebunk.

Christmas concert at the Town House School

Mid-Week Music’s second annual Christmas concert will be held during Prelude on Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 5 p.m. at Kennebunkport Historical Society’s Town House School at 135 North Street. An encore will be presented Sunday, Dec. 11 at 1 p.m.

Keyboardist Mark Gunter, guitarist Dana Pearson, and bassist John Kumnick will perform a mix of yuletide tunes, from “Silent Night,” “Angels We Have Heard on High,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” to “Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin’,” “2000 Miles,” and “Christmas is the Time to Say I Love You.”

Supplying additional holiday cheer, Gunter will be playing some songs on his vintage Hammond organ. Tickets are $15 for historical society members and $18 for non-members, and may be purchased at the door or at For more information, email [email protected] or call 967-2751.

Christmas Prelude preps for 41st year

The 41st annual Christmas Prelude (Dec. 1-11) will soon see the town decked out in lights and greenery and a return to the traditional Preludes of the past, with some new events.

The 41st annual Christmas Prelude, scheduled for Dec. 1-11, will see the town decked out in lights and greenery and feature a return to traditional Preludes of the past, with some new events. Dan King photo

“We are excited to be back,” said Kennebunkport Business Association President Ashley Padget, of Alisson’s, in a Nov. 14 news release. “More than anything, I’m looking forward to the return of our traditional events like the Hat Parade and tree lightings, and a new twist to the Walk to Bethlehem and Santa’s arrival by lobster boat.”

Last year’s changed Hat Parade route is no more, and while there will be a Prelude Family Festival on the second Friday, it will wrap around traditional events like the Dock Square tree lighting and fireworks.

According to the business association, the first Friday tree lighting will be back and better than ever as the countdown begins at 41 this year. The re-imagined Santa’s arrival by lobster boat is another event planned to be bigger and better.

“We are super excited,” said the Nonantum’s Tina Gordon. “Santa’s getting on the boat after noon – he’ll go up and down river from 12:30 to 12:45 p.m., landing at the Nonantum at 1.”

Also returning this year are the craft fairs Prelude is known for – places to find hand-crafted gifts.

Following its success in 2019, the Kennebunkport Business Association is also working to bring a little Midweek Magic back to Christmas Prelude.

“We are working hard to build Midweek Magic events for travelers looking to extend their stay, and locals hoping to enjoy a less hectic celebration,” said Padget.

Midweek merriment includes a Cookie Crawl, house tours of the decorated White Columns, a Merry Market at Maine Art Hill, cookie decorating, art classes and the return of the Walk to Bethlehem on Dec. 7 and a Storybook Christmas for children on Dec. 8.

All of the events have been made possible through the support of local sponsors, including Kennebunk Savings, Kennebunk Outfitters, Alisson’s Restaurant, Best of Everything, White Barn Inn, Kennebunkport Resort Collection, H.B. Provisions, Batson River Brewing & Distilling, Squish KPT, Historic Inns of Kennebunkport and the Nonantum Resort.

Christmas Prelude has been presented 41 years by the Kennebunkport Business Association, an all-volunteer group that works to plan the events all year long.  For a full schedule, visit

Fine Arts Show with Crafts set for Dec. 1-4

Maine Women in the Arts joins the Prelude festivities with its biggest show of the season, the annual holiday Fine Arts Show with Crafts. The show features a variety of original fine art by local artists including paintings, photography, and pottery.

In addition, the show offers a selection of handmade crafts made by the artists including jewelry, ornaments, cards, home décor, wood carvings, prints, books authored and illustrated by members.

The show begins with an opening reception Thursday, Dec. 1, 5 to 7 p.m. at the Masonic Lodge, 10 North St., Kennebunkport. The reception offers early shopping opportunity, refreshments and live holiday music. The show continues through the weekend: Friday, Dec. 2, 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 3, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; and Sunday, Dec. 4, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The show offers the annual MWA raffle to support a scholarship. Each of the participating artists (about 40) offers an item to create a basketful of handcrafted items.

For more information, visit

Tree lighting planned at Stevens Center

West Kennebunk will start the holiday season with a Christmas tree lighting ceremony at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3. Santa will light the tree outside the Dorothy Stevens Community Center on Thompson Road. The Kennebunk Twirlers will perform and Santa will help serve refreshments inside.

Atlantic Hall schedules annual Prelude Fair

Atlantic Hall will hold its annual Prelude Fair on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 7:45 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The event will feature a variety of items sold at the fair, many from local artisans, including handcrafted wooden lobster traps, wreaths/winter berry greenery, rope craft, handmade paper, wooden sculptures and wooden trays, photographs, jewelry, paintings, antiques, holiday gifts and decorations, oriental rugs, small pastries, cheeses, jams/jellies, and Atlantic Hall’s Old-Time Raffle.

Also, again this year, the fair will host Ed Wright, acoustic guitarist and Cape Porpoise resident, who will perform a mix of holiday music and familiar standards.

For more information, call Ed Briggs at 207 967 3357.

Maine illustrators on view at museum

The Brick Store Museum announced its newest exhibition, The Great State of Illustration in Maine, in collaboration with Illustration Institute, is on view through February. The exhibit features more than 80 historic and contemporary illustrators who call Maine home.

Maine illustrators in the exhibition include Dahlov Ipcar, Ashley Bryan, Barbara Cooney, NC Wyeth, Rockwell Kent, Edward Hopper and Francis Hamabe. Current illustrators such as Matt Tavares, Chris van Dusen, Melissa Sweet, Scott Nash, Nancy Gibson-Nash, Stephen Costanza, Tim Sample, and Wade Zahares have also shared work that adorn four full galleries of artwork to illustrate the work of Maine illustrators.

The top three overall finishers at the Kennebunk Outfitters Turkey Trot 5K. From left, Jonathan Briskman, Northampton, Massachusetts, third place, 16:34; Alex Turner, Watertown, Massachusetts, first place, 16:11; and Shiloh Schulte, Kennebunk, second place, 16:27. Robin Buckley/Courtesy photo

Participants await the start of the Kennebunk Outfitters Turkey Trot 5K on Thanksgiving morning. The event raised $2,000 for Community Harvest. Robin Buckley/Courtesy photo

Molly Centore, left, and Scott Newman, both of Waltham, Massachusetts, are in sync as they approach the finish line of the Kennebunk Outfitters Turkey Trot 5K. The first-year event attracted nearly 270 registrants and featured a course along Western Avenue, Beach Avenue and Boothby Road. On the strength of participant donations and a matching gift from Kennebunk Outfitters, $2,000 was raised for Community Harvest, a nonprofit organization of the Kennebunks that meets the needs of its neighbors through food sharing, fellowship and financial assistance. Robin Buckley/Courtesy photo

Jet Francis and Alex Turner stopped by Kennebunk Outfitters to pick up their rewards for placing first in the women’s and men’s divisions, respectively, of the first Kennebunk Outfitters Turkey Trot 5K. Francis, 17, of Kennebunk, took top honors with a time of 20:52 and was 14th overall. Turner, 25, of Watertown, Massachusetts, was first overall with a time of 16:11. There were 257 finishers of the event held Thanksgiving morning in Lower Village Kennebunk. Robin Buckley/Courtesy photo

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