Cracks in the Wall A Must Read

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A book that is 18 years in the writing deserves to be read. So even though I set it aside after reading about 20 pages, I came back to J. Morris Lavallee’s Cracks in the Wall a couple of weeks later. And I’m so glad I did.

Morris, who lives in Brunswick, is an interesting guy, a disable veteran, a rock band musician, and a writer. State Representative Kerri Bickford called him to my attention, insisting that I get a copy of his book, read it, and get to know Morris. Here’s how he describes himself in the book’s introduction:

“J. Morris Lavallee is a student of human behavior, always searching for the answers to life’s conditions. He is a father of three, a divorcee, a veteran, a machinist, a fabricator and a musician.”

In a special author’s note, Morris dedicates the book to his three children, four ex-wives, family and friends.

A Tasty Thai Trip

City or Town: 
Skowhegan
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You don’t have to go all the way to Thailand to experience it’s tasty cuisine, now available close-by in Skowhegan, Augusta, and Wiscasset at M Thai. Vicky Soikum has created a very tasty exotic food experience that will keep you coming back to try more items on her extensive menu.

We chose the M Thai in Skowhegan at the recommendation of Jennifer Olson, Executive Director of the Skowhegan Main Street organization. Jen said the food “is very good.” And oh, she was so right!

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Communications Specialists Hired By Fish and Wildlife Department

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It took ten years, but the Fisheries and Wildlife Divisions of Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife have finally hired a communications specialist. At the same time, the agency’s Information and Education Division hired a public relations representative to replace Deb Turcotte who left that position in Octobe

In 2002 and 2004, reviews of the department’s divisions was conducted by the Management Assistance Team of the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, following enactment by the legislature of study proposals from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine.

Many Recreational Benefits in Plum Creek's Moosehead Project

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An astonishing and unprecedented array of recreational benefits are included Plum Creek’s Moose Region Conservation Easement and Multi-Resource Management Plan.

The 363,000 acre easement – one of the largest in the United States – requires sustainable harvesting practices, protects critical ecological values, and provides guaranteed access for traditional recreational activities. The recreational benefits are the focus of this column.

Private landowners have been reluctant to guarantee recreational access to their property and have strongly opposed establishment of permanent trail easements across their land. So Plum Creek’s leadership on this issue is truly amazing.

Spectacular Dining at Shepherd's Pie

City or Town: 
Rockport
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You might think Rockport is a long way to drive for shepherd’s pie, but you’ve never had the shepherd’s pie at Shepherd’s Pie.

This Rockport pub has mastered the small plate menu, providing amazing textures and tastes, superb service, and a casual style that masks the big-city sophistication of the food.

It was love at first bite for us, long before we got to the phenomenal signature-dish shepherd’s pie.

Fishing Rules Policy Needed Along with Simplification

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The debate we’ve stirred up over Maine’s complicated fishing rules may (I hope), stimulate action from anglers, DIF&W, or the legislature – or maybe all three, to simplify the rules and make them consistent statewide. In this post I will wrap up the barbless discussion (at least on my end) and recommend a fishing rules policy.

If you are just getting into this discussion, please read my two previous blog posts on the issue.

Gordon (not his real name) paid a $130 fine for fishing the Rapid River with a barbed hook. He did not post his land. He has been somewhat amused by the comments on my blog posts about his case. You should take his story as it was presented. He was unaware of the barbless rule and thought afterward that he should have been given a warning and not a summons. As far as he is concerned, that’s the end of it.

Barbless Hook Debate is Fierce!

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My column on a summons issued to an angler for fishing the Rapid River with a barbed hook stimulated a fascinating (and sometimes heated) discussion on two forums and my Facebook page, plus many messages emailed directly to me.

More than 50 comments were posted on Butch Moore’s New England Outdoor Voice forum, and more than 50 on Dan Tarkinton’s Fly Fishing Maine Forum.

If you missed the first column, you can read it here in the May 31 post titled Wardens Take Barbed Approach With Angler.

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