Tri-Town Notes: Feb. 9

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Freeport FebFest of Arts & Culture

For the third year, the Annual FebFest of Arts & Culture will showcase fine art, theater, music, film, food and more. Activities are held at venues around Freeport throughout the month of February. Highlights include improv comedy from Freeport Players, coffee houses and sing-a-longs. There are lectures at L.L. Bean, author talks and programs at the Freeport Library. There will be a cabaret night with Greater Freeport Community Chorus and an exhibit by the Art Guild of Freeport. There will be a screening of the Maine Short Film Festival and concerts by the community band Coastal Winds and by local favorites, Crabapple Jam. FreeportUSA’s Flavor of Freeport will be held Feb.17-19, and includes the Chef Signature Series and a Funkadelic Dance Party with Motor Booty Affair. Visit www.FreeportFebFest.org for up-to-date listings.

Freeport Players introduce improv

Freeport Players’ debut performance of their new improv troupe, the FPI, short for Freeport Players Improv, will begin at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16, at Freeport Library. Trained by veteran improv artist Keith Anctil from the Improvised Puppet Project, The Escapists, and Stranger Than Fiction, the FPI will bring together people from all walks of life in an art form that requires them to work in close cooperation. “Improv is all about creativity, sharp wits, and above all, supporting the other guy,” said Anctil. “We’ve got a roller derby athlete, a retired engineer, a schoolteacher, and more, all training together so that they can anticipate each other’s moves.” The audience is the wild card that gives improv its greatest energy, supplying prompts the troupe uses as jumping off points for scenes. Tickets are pay-what-you-want and available only at the door. For more information, www.fcponline.org.

‘Last Voyage of the Hornet’

Kristin Krause Nam will talk about her new book, “Last Voyage of the Hornet,” at Freeport Community Library, 6:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 13. The book tells the true story of Freeport native, Capt. Josiah Mitchell, whose ship, the Hornet, burned in the Pacific in 1866. After the first mate accidentally sets fire to the ship, 31 men must flee in three small boats with only three days of rations. The crewmen must contend with the natural world in the form of enormous waves, swordfish, and a tornado. As resources dwindle they increasingly contend with each other as well. There is talk of mutiny, murder and even cannibalism.

Copies of Nam’s book will be available for purchase and signing.

Over the course of their adventure, the men drift an astonishing 4,300 miles – a feat that rivals the better-known stories of Captain Bligh or the whale ship Essex. When they finally reach safety, they meet an ambitious but frustrated young reporter named Samuel Clemens who recognizes this story as the break he needs. He writes up the tale and finds the fame he seeks as Mark Twain. Based on the diaries of Captain Mitchell and two passengers, “Last Voyage of the Hornet” is a tale of leadership, courage, and the refusal to surrender.

For directions to Freeport Community Library see www.freeportlibrary.com or call 865-3307.

Annual Art Guild exhibit now at FCL

Work by members of the Art Guild of Freeport will be on display at the Freeport Community Library through Feb. 28. The Art Guild of Freeport has been in existence for over 40 years. It is comprised of talented, emerging and established artists who are primarily oil and watercolor painters of both abstract and traditional scenes. Guild members, who live in the greater Portland area, join together to learn from each other and experience the joy of sharing their passion with like-minded individuals.

They exhibit at several group shows each year, including Bonobo Restaurant in Portland, Art in the Park in South Portland, and the Freeport Community Library each February. Members also show individually at several other venues across Maine. The Art Guild of Freeport is open to members skilled in other mediums as well. If interested, please contact the Art Guild at christydeveault@gmail.com.

Woman’s Club hosting author, caregiver

Catherine Gentile, author, editor, public speaker and former caregiver, will speak to the Freeport Woman’s Club at the Freeport Community Library on Friday, Feb. 17, at 1 p.m. about her recently published, award-winning novel, “The Quiet Roar of a Hummingbird.” The novel launched her into facilitating a support group for families of persons with Alzheimer’s. She also published an e-book for caregivers entitled, “The Caregiving Journey: Tools, Tips, and Provisions.” During the free talk, Gentile will speak about “Caring for the Caregiver: Management Considerations for Taking Care of Others and Ourselves.”

The Freeport Woman’s Club is a service organization that was founded more than 90 years ago. It meets once a month at the Freeport Community Library for a meeting and program. The club’s fundraising projects include a Spring Bazaar and a bake sale on Election Day. Money raised provides local scholarships, community improvements, donations to Freeport Community Services and support for women seeking career education. The monthly meetings include presentations on a variety of topics and are open to the public. The public is invited and refreshments will be served.

New members are welcome. Contact Betty Duckworth at 847-0240 or elizhard32@aol.com.

FHS opening reception, writers’ challenge

“Stories of Freeport’s Past: Celebrating Our Collection,” will showcase historic objects that tell interesting stories about Freeport history at an opening reception hosted by the Freeport Historical Society from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 23. One item on view will be the top hat owned by entrepreneur E.B. Mallet, who developed Freeport Village in the late 19th century by building a shoe factory, a sawmill and a gristmill, which encouraged industrial growth. In addition to historical objects from the collection, items donated by families in town who do not often see their things displayed, will be included.

There will also be some “mystery” objects – items that are intriguing, but come with little or no associated history except that they are from Freeport. The objects in this exhibit are housed in the archives and are not generally seen by the public.

The “mystery” objects on exhibit are intended to inspire writers in the community to create their own stories as part of a writing contest – The Art in Artifacts – that will culminate in April.

Visitors are invited to use the items as inspiration for written work. View the exhibit, select an item, and write. Writers of all ages are invited to submit their work, and all literary forms and genres are welcome.

Deadline for contest submissions is April 15. All entries must be received at Freeport Historical Society by 4 p.m. via mail, email, or delivery. Judges’ awards will be announced and the award-winning entries read at an event on April 23, 5-7 p.m. at a location to be announced. Complete contest guidelines will be available from Freeport Historical Society by Feb. 23.

Hours for the exhibit are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday at 45 Main St. For more information visit Freeport Historical Society at www.HistoricFreeport.org. The exhibit will be on display until May 31.

Rare canoe trip to be explored

“The Northern Forest Canoe Trail: A Thru-Paddler Panel Discussion” will be held in the L.L. Bean Camping Atrium in Freeport at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 10. Only 100 people have through-paddled the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Meet four individuals who journeyed more than 700 miles end-to-end by canoe or kayak. Northern Forest Canoe Trail Executive Director Karrie Thomas will moderate a panel discussion about the best, worst and funniest moments of recent through-paddlers Collin “Teton” Blunk, Laurie Chandler and section-paddler Chris Gill.

Talk describes ‘revolutionary’ move 

“Geology and Topography of the Southern Berkshires: Impact and Implications on the Transport of the Cannon from Fort Ticonderoga to Boston, 1776,” will be disucussed in the L.L. Bean Camping Atrium, 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17, by guest speaker Bruce Rueger. In fall 1775, Fort Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain in New York was captured from the British by American forces. Artillery at the fort was sorely needed for the defense of Boston, so Henry Knox was recruited to lead a group of Americans to transport the cannon from Fort Ticonderoga to Boston. Knox successfully completed this task between late December 1775, and early January 1776. Crossing the Taconic and Berkshire ranges in western Massachusetts in the winter was no easy task.

Send community notes from Freeport, Pownal and Durham to tritownnotes@gmail.com.

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