Thursday, May 28, 2015

Welcome to new Chamber Member The Barn Arts Collective!

Please join us in welcoming The Barn Arts Collective, our newest Chamber Member!

The Barn Arts Collective (formerly the Mohawk Arts Collective) is a group of artists that create and encourage community through the practice and presentation of live arts events. Based out of The Barn, a performance and rehearsal space in Bass Harbor, Maine, the organization creates new works of  performance (theater, music, dance, film), provides residencies for artists making new work, hosts and performs at community events, partners with local non-profit organizations to offer arts and educational programs, and develops and leads workshops for young people in the community. 

The Collective was founded in 2008 to create opportunities for artists to develop new works of performance on Mount Desert Island. The organization has grown in each of the last seven years as it has become increasingly involved in the local community. Since 2008, over one hundred artists have come to Bass Harbor to create and continue work on new performance pieces and the collective has performed or taught at schools, libraries, community centers, and in the national park. The work takes the form of theater productions, concerts, discussions, film screenings, workshops and variety shows and uses elements of music, film, puppetry, comedy, and dance.

Current Programs Offered:
-Fostering the growth of local artists by providing space and instruction in music, theater making, movement, acting, and script analysis.

-Introducing non-local artists and their work to the community through residencies that provide space and support for new works of performance.

-Partnering with the Common Good Cafe, a non-profit soup kitchen in Southwest Harbor, to provide family entertainment nights during the winter months, including original children's theater shows and live music.

-Providing a community forum for discussion and interpretation of great works of literature. The 2015 winter session explores the plays, stories, and letters of Anton Chekhov.

-Working with area schools, libraries, and camps to present theater programs and workshops for young people of all ages. Goals of current teaching artist programs include improving literacy through the study and performance of Shakespeare, increasing environmental awareness through a make-your-own adventure puppet musical, examining technology and its role in our lives in an interactive rock musical, and remembering the bravery of resistance groups in Nazi Germany through a film and theater double feature event. 

Catch a show!  The summer schedule is at:
Follow them on facebook at:

Monday, May 18, 2015

Healthy Acadia Offers Responsible Beverage Server and Seller Trainings

Healthy Acadia is hosting a spring session of our Responsible Beverage Server and Seller

Trainings in June. The trainings provide staff with knowledge to better prevent violations

of liquor laws and serve alcohol safely, with an emphasis on preventing underage and

high-risk drinking. “Soon the summer season will be in full swing and this is the

opportune time for businesses to ensure that their new and veteran employees are up to

speed on alcohol selling laws and best practices,” stated Nikki Fox, Community Health

Coordinator at Healthy Acadia.

The off-premise training is for employees of retail and liquor stores. It will be held on

Tuesday, June 2nd (12:00pm to 4:30pm) at Ellsworth City Hall. On-premise trainings are

for employees of restaurants and bars. The upcoming trainings will take place

Wednesday, June 3rd (9:00-1:30) at Ellsworth City Hall and Thursday, June 4th (9:00am to

1:30pm) at Machias Savings Bank in Bar Harbor. Training cost is $25.00, please bring a

photo ID with you for certification.  For more information and to register, please contact

Nikki at 667-7171 or

 “Healthy Acadia’s Alcohol Server Trainings provided our staff with increased

understanding of liquor laws, along with tools to ensure safe and legal serving. We are

proud to know that through our business practices, we are helping to promote healthy and

safer communities,” stated Lorena Stearns, owner of Finn's Irish Pub in Ellsworth.

Veteran instructor Frank Lyons leads the trainings and teaches attendees how to ensure

that safe business practices are implemented within the workplace. Lyons, a former liquor

inspector, walks participants through numerous possible scenarios, examines fake

identification cards, reviews excerpts from the Maine liquor laws, and discusses all the

factors that go into making alcohol handling a safe business. "State certified RBS training

is the cornerstone for licensees to build policies that prevent unnecessary violations, civil

suits and tragedies that occur with the unlawful sale of alcohol. The ‘Seller-Server

Training’ programs were designed for the one purpose of helping licensees and their

employees stay compliant and avoid those consequences through solid training supported

by a sound written policy,” explains Frank Lyons.

Healthy Acadia is dedicated to building healthier communities by connecting individuals

with health supports, building partnerships, coordinating education and prevention

services, and improving policies and environments. Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3)

charitable organization serving the Downeast region and is the Healthy Maine

Partnership for Hancock County.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

MDI Hospital Nursing Excellence Award Winners Named

                                (from left to right) MDI Hospital Nursing Excellence Award Winners 
                                      Mike Kiers, RN, Jennifer Kuehne, RN, Lily Sweeney, RN, 
                                               Heidi Wittwer, RN,  and Tom Mockus, RN.

MDI Hospital is pleased to announce the five winners of its 2015 Nursing Excellence Award, Mike Kiers, RN, Jennifer Kuehne, RN, Tom Mockus, RN, Lily Sweeney, RN, Heidi Wittwer, RN. “These nurses are so deserving of this honor,” said MDI Hospital President/CEO Art Blank. “In addition to their talent, experience and education, each of them is a dedicated, compassionate professional. They clearly demonstrate how a passion for nursing can drive excellence in every aspect of patient care.”

The is the first year that MDI Hospital has given the award, but it is a tradition that will last for a long time to come, said MDI Hospital Nurse Educator Betsy Corrigan, RN, MSN. “This award recognizes nurses who demonstrate advocacy, leadership, mentorship and excellence in their nursing practice and who work to affect positive change to promote positive patient outcomes. It is a very prestigious award and one that the hospital takes very seriously.”

Candidates were nominated by their peers based on excellence in four categories: Leadership, Clinical Practice, Change Agent and Mentorship. A panel of judges comprised of nurse leaders and hospital professionals was charged with the difficult task of selecting just five winners. Award winners were presented with a framed certificate of excellence and a $100.00 gift certificate to a local restaurant. “I was very surprised but truly honored to receive the award and to be among such outstanding colleagues. I especially appreciated being acknowledged for my role as a leader, patient advocate, and versatile team member, said award winner Wittwer.

“These nurses are truly nurses of excellence,” said panel judge Joanne Harris, MDI Hospital’s Director of Human Resources.  “They inspire us all with their commitment to integrity, respect and compassionate patient care.”

Thursday, May 7, 2015

MDI Hospital Launches CNA Program

Displaying CNA Students.jpg

MDI Hospital nursing education coordinator Betsy Corrigan, MSN, RN, believes that clinical nurse educators are change agents, working to engage nurses in the use of evidenced-based best practices to improve patient, family and community outcomes.

Graduates of the hospital’s first Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Program will take this message with them as they begin their healthcare careers. The new certification program, offered in cooperation with the MDI Adult Education, provides hands-on clinical education in long-term care and hospital settings. Participants in the 13-week CNA course are set to take their CNA exam on May 5. Curriculum for the new clinical education program includes CPR, first aid and emergency response, human anatomy and physiology, medical procedures and protocols, documentation and reporting, medical terminology and patient safety. “The curriculum went above and beyond the minimum required,” said student Meredith Brewer. “It truly was one of the best decisions I ever made.  Our area needs CNAs!”

First time program instructors Ellen Beauchaine, BSN, RN, and Cara Pinkham, RN found the experience very valuable as well. “It has made me a better educator and nurse,” said Beauchaine, “I feel that by being part of this program I am reaching out and touching the future of healthcare.” CNAs are an integral part of the care team, agree both Pinkham and Beauchaine.  “I have taken great pride in leading this new group of students.  It reminded me of the team effort needed to care for all patients and their families. We are all integral to the healing process,” said Pinkham.

In order to provide their students with the best possible learning experience, the instructors focused on providing individualized teaching styles while emphasizing the importance of the team dynamic in healthcare today. “Since each student learns differently, I made sure to individualize their clinical experiences to their different learning styles,” said Beauchaine.

Students enrolled in the inaugural program have been very enthusiastic about their instructors and their experience. “They have taught me how healthcare is really a team effort and how important everyone in the process is,” said program participant Marc Jaffrey. For many of the students, the program is the first step toward achieving their long term nursing goals. “It has made me a lot more confident in going forward with my career in helping others. It also has put my foot in the door to become an RN,” said CNA student Jennifer Norwood.

For more information on the CNA program please contact Betsy Corrigan MSN, RN at 288-5082 ext: 1204 or

Monday, May 4, 2015

Acadia National Park to offer car-free mornings

View from Cadillac Mountain looking out over the Porcupine Islands.
View from Cadillac Mountain looking out over the Porcupine Islands.
NPS/Kent Miller

Contact: John Kelly, 207-288-8703 
Visitors to Acadia National Park will have the opportunity to enjoy two car-free mornings on Park Loop Road in 2015.The National Park Service will close Park Loop Road on Mount Desert Island to private vehicles from midnight to noon on Saturday, May 16, and Saturday, September 26.

The National Park Service will also waive the park entrance fee for all visitors during the car-free morning on May 16, and offer a fee-free day in celebration of National Public Lands Day on September 26. The National Park Service is promoting the car-free mornings as a way for visitors to experience the Park Loop Road through non-motorized activities, such as walking, bicycling, skateboarding, and inline skating. The National Park Service will also evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of car-free mornings to help inform the development of a transportation plan for Acadia National Park. The purpose of the transportation plan is to determine how best to provide safe and efficient transportation and a variety of high quality experiences to visitors within Acadia National Park while ensuring the protection of park resources and values. The plan will comprehensively examine several management options to improve safety on park roads and reduce crowding and congestion at key visitor destinations and travel corridors.

"We are excited to offer a way for visitors to enjoy a carefree, car-free experience on the Park Loop Road during our shoulder seasons and look forward to working with the neighboring communities to make it a success," said Superintendent Sheridan Steele.

The sections of Park Loop Road closed to private vehicles will include the Cadillac Summit Road, the road between the Hulls Cove Visitor Center and Jordan Pond, and the entire one-way section. Roads that provide direct access to the Hulls Cove Visitor Center, Jordan Pond, and Sieur de Monts (including the Abbe Museum, Wild Gardens of Acadia, and Nature Center) will remain open, and visitors will be encouraged to park in these locations. The Jordan Pond House restaurant and gift shops at Jordan Pond, Cadillac Mountain, and Thunder Hole will be open during their regular business hours.

For the safety of visitors, roadside parking will be prohibited at the Cadillac Mountain entrance on Eagle Lake Road (Route 233), and bicyclists will be required to ride only in the direction permitted on the one-way section of the Park Loop Road.

Additional details on the car-free morning on September 26 will follow. For more information on Acadia National Park, please call (207) 288-3338 or visit the park's website at

Southwest Harbor Artisans - Celebrating our Move!

After several years in Southwest Harbor, our artisan cooperative has moved a little down the road. Now at 360 Main Street, facing the Veterans’ Memorial-Village Green Park and beside the Quietside Cafe, Harbor Artisans celebrates our new environment by hosting a special preview on May 8th & 9th from 10AM to 5PM.  In addition, we are having a Grand Reopening Reception on the evening of the 8th, from 5 to 8PM, when you can come to meet the artists and enjoy some refreshments!  You have a great opportunity to buy a gift for Mothers’ Day or splurge on yourself.  Either way, enjoy this sneak peak for our treasured local customers before the summer crowds come.  Harbor Artisans has transformed more than just our address. We are filling this larger space with a stunning array of fine art and craft, adding many new artists - all based here in Maine - to our ranks.  This is your opportunity to support Maine’s creative economy.  Shop local and buy handmade at Harbor Artisans.  We officially open for the 2015 season on May 22.