Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Christopher Fogg's Obituary and the Fogg Family Memorial Fund


Christopher A. Fogg - age 54, died unexpectedly of a heart attack on Sept. 12, 2020 at Alfond Center for Health in Augusta, ME. He was born in Peterborough, NH, on April 4, 1966 the son of George L. Fogg and Katherine (McHugh) Long.

Chris grew up in New Ipswich, NH, and attended Mascenic Regional High School. Dubbed “the jock” by his family, he played baseball and many sports. He was always up for an adventure and lived in Florida and California before settling back in New England. It was there he began a long career in hospitality and tourism that culminated with leadership positions at the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Bar Harbor Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Maine Tourism Association, where he most recently served as CEO. Chris became an expert in his field and loved the work-especially meeting and working with business owners across the state. Living in Maine, Chris developed a passion for golf and snowmobiling and forged new and life-changing friendships through those outings. He had an itch to travel and had fond memories of trips to China, Alaska and the Dominican Republic.

Always one to march to the beat of his own drum with determination, Chris made his own timeline in life. In his 40s he married his beloved wife, Erin (Hitchcock) Fogg-her practical nature balanced his spontaneity, and his sense of humor balanced her matter-of-fact approach to life. Deep into his career he proudly earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst after having earlier received an associate’s degree.

He became a father later than most of his peers, but it served him well, as he had so much experience to share with the two joys of his life: his sons Isaac “Ike” and Lincoln Fogg. To his delight, the boys love sports as much as Chris did and they became inseparable in their passion for professional hockey, golf, baseball and football. He enjoyed coaching their baseball teams. Because of the pandemic, Chris spent the last six months of his life with the boys. He taught his sons to golf and enjoyed playing 18 holes day after day-they made memories to last a lifetime. He will forever be remembered as a devoted husband, a fun-loving and trouble-instigating dad, a carefree little brother, a lover of animals-especially his dogs-and a respected and hard-working professional.

Chris was predeceased by his parents, and by a sister, Kimberlee Fogg. He is survived by his wife and sons of Farmingdale, ME; one brother, Terence Fogg (Cheryl Weeks) of Rindge, NH; two sisters: Monica (David) Lemaire, and Pamela (Tom) Small, both of Shapleigh, ME; his in-laws, many beloved aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and important friends from every stage of his life.

Public Visiting Hours:

Public visiting hours are scheduled from 6-8 PM on Friday Sept. 18, 2020 at Plummer Funeral Home, 16 Pleasant St., Augusta, ME. Face masks and social distancing are in effect. Limit of 50 people inside at one time. Due to COVID-19, a private invitation-only celebration of life will be held at a later date.

Fogg Family Memorial Fund:

An account has been created to support Chris’ sons in their future endeavors. Contributions can be made payable to the Fogg Family Memorial Fund and be mailed to either Erin Fogg, 50 School House Dr., Farmingdale, ME, 04344, or c/o Kennebec Savings Bank, 1 Northern Avenue, Farmingdale, ME, 04344.

You can view Chris's obituary here:


Monday, September 14, 2020

Welcome to our New Member, Island Connections!

 Please join us in welcoming our newest Chamber member, Island Connections. You may know that they provide awesome services here on MDI - here's a little bit about them:

Island Connections began in the mid-1990’s in response to an identified need in the Mount Desert Island community. Visiting nurses, social workers, and other health care agency professionals on MDI noticed that seniors and disabled neighbors in the community missed doctor appointments, had difficulty replenishing their food at home, and rarely got out of their homes to socialize with others. Betty Mitchell, director of the Mount Desert Nursing Association at the time, continually observed that transportation was a challenge for seniors and the disabled population.

Through the dedicated concern of area healthcare professionals and the Bar Harbor Housing Authority, the MDI Seniors Task Force was formed early in 1996. The results of a survey of more than 700 seniors and disabled confirmed that readily available transportation was the most basic necessity to maintain quality of life. The mission of “neighbors helping neighbors” was born. The Council of Churches of the Islands helped to spread the word at many church gatherings; the seed was planted and the organization now known as Island Connections: Neighbors Helping Neighbors launched!

In mid-1997, initial funding was awarded by a grant from the Faith in Action Program, underwritten by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; the funds covered startup costs and the first 18 months of operation. A board of directors was recruited, and in October 1997, Michael Reisman was hired as Program Director. Island Connections received its tax-exempt, 501c-3 status in early 1998; at that time, 25 volunteers served 51 seniors and those with disabilities. With an average of 145 drives per month, Island Connections improved the quality of life for many on MDI.

Now, nearly 22 years later, Island Connections annually provides approximately 3,500 rides for 315 Neighbors, delivers 13,000 meals (averaging 250 weekly), and provides many rides in our wheelchair accessible van. We continue to thrive due to the generous time and compassion of so many, but we always need to recruit additional volunteer drivers to help us to meet the transportation needs of so many. Please consider becoming part of the Island Connections family by clicking here or contacting us at 207-288-4457.

So, now what? We are in our 22nd year of service on Mount Desert Island, we are putting a lot of effort into the sustainability of our organization. We have added new fundraising events to create greater exposure and household recognition as the number one provider of free transportation on MDI for seniors as well as people with temporary/permanent disabilities and to ensure sustainability of the organization for generations to come.

Monday, September 7, 2020

Fund to Support Needs of Cancer Patients During COVID-19 Pandemic

Healthy Acadia’s Cancer Patient Navigation program, with funding support from Maine Cancer Foundation, is offering need-based mini-grants up to $500 for individuals and families impacted by cancer in Washington County, Maine.

A cancer diagnosis has an impact on many areas of life for patients and their caregivers. Diagnosis and treatment can cause financial stress, which may hinder the patient’s ability to meet critical needs for themselves or their family. The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified these stressors for many. Our Maine Cancer Foundation COVID-19 Fund can help cancer patients and caregivers meet critical needs by offering direct, immediate support.

To be eligible for support through the Maine Cancer Foundation COVID-19 Fund, applicants must reside in Washington County, Maine, have a cancer diagnosis, be currently undergoing cancer treatment, including any form of chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery, or have undergone treatment within the preceding six months, and seeking help with meeting a critical need. Critical needs may include but are not limited to assistance in paying for groceries, home heating and/or necessary utilities, transportation, specialized equipment related to the cancer diagnosis, housing expenses, or critical home/car repairs. 

The Fund may provide one-time monetary assistance and/or may consult with local business partners who have agreed to provide services at a free or reduced rate for  Fund recipients. Funds awarded will be paid directly to the vendor in all cases and cannot reimburse a patient or family member directly.  

Enter the following URL into your web browser to access and download an application: https://healthyacadia.org/documents/Final_MCFCF_Application.docx  For more information, and/or to inquire about cancer patient navigation services in Washington County, please contact Angela Fochesato at Angela@HealthyAcadia.orgor (207) 255-3741 Ext. 103.

Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that engages in a broad range of initiatives to build healthier communities and make it easier for people to lead healthy lives across Washington and Hancock counties, Maine. Learn more at www.HealthyAcadia.org.

The Colorectal Cancer Screening Support Fund is supported by a grant from Maine Cancer Foundation. Maine Cancer Foundation's grant is offered as part of their ongoing Challenge Cancer 2020 initiative, aimed at reducing cancer incidence and mortality in Maine. They have awarded over $11 million since 2015 in support of this initiative, focused on prevention, early detection and screening, and access to care for all Mainers. To learn more about Maine Cancer Foundation, visit www.malnecancer.org, or contact Katelyn Michaud, katetyn@mainecancer.org, (207) 773-2533.

Thursday, September 3, 2020

August 2020 President's Letter

 August, 2020

Dear Chamber Member:

We all know just how difficult the last six months have been on you personally and on your business. The chamber is like your business - dependent on individuals to make things work. We have only one paid position and that is for our invaluable Visitor Center Manager, Cynthia Crow.

We are dependent on dues, advertising and events to bring in our income. At this point, we have had to cancel our Fireworks and Oktoberfest for 2020 so that leaves us only with the dues you pay. Up until now, the town of Southwest Harbor has not committed any funds to our running of the visitor center. By contrast, both Bar Harbor and Mount Desert help fund their visitor centers.

So what does the Visitor Center provide? Most years, we have 50 or more visitors drop by every day, looking for places to eat, stay and for things to do. This year, of course that number has been lower, but our Visitor Center, located at Harbor House, has still seen 700 people. We publish our own maps and guides, and display our member's brochures and rack cards. We also host events like the Fireworks and Oktoberfest, which bring visitors to town and to your businesses.

As a consequence of the current state of affairs, your board of directors has changed our dues structure in hopes of helping you out in 2021. The new format makes it easy for you to choose exactly which Chamber services you want. Please review the A La Cart Dues Description to learn about your base dues and the new options packages.

You will be receiving an email which contains a link to your dues page, where you will be able to select membership options and immediately see the impact on your dues. We have initially set it up so that it includes your base dues and two option packages, plus any extras you are currently signed up for. We are offering a discount on your 2021 dues, but if you can afford it, please help us out by paying the full amount. Please make any desired changes by September 30, 2020, after which the page will be locked and changes cannot be made. We will then email your final invoice in early October. If you need assistance, please contact Cynthia in the office.

Your membership dues invoices will be coming to you via email, beginning this year. Other invoices, such as billing for Trail Map ads and monthly statements on past due accounts, will still be mailed to you. As always, you can set up a payment plan for any amounts due, and if you would like to pay by credit card, simply call Cynthia at the office.

Lastly, our Annual Meeting is scheduled for Monday, October 19th at 5:30PM. This year, the meeting will be held “virtually”. Details will be emailed to you as soon as they are finalized. Please plan on attending. We will recap 2020; talk about a few plans for 2021 and would like to hear from you about your needs from the Chamber.

Thank you for supporting the Chamber in 2020. We count on your support for 2021 and beyond.


Ruth Davis


Southwest Harbor & Tremont Chamber of Commerce

Friday, August 28, 2020

Healthy Acadia to Offer Responsible Sales Training September 24

 Healthy Acadia is offering Responsible Beverage Server and Seller training for stores, restaurants, and taverns to help them safely sell or serve alcohol. “Two things have changed with our state-certified server/seller training this year,” said Tara Young, Drug-Free Communities Coordinator, and one of the trainers. “We will be offering training online using the Zoom platform to maintain social distancing protocols. And, since so many small businesses in our area are experiencing financial difficulties, we will not be charging $25 for the training. It will be free for anyone, whether they are a new staff member getting their initial training, someone who needs recertification, or someone who would like to become a server or cashier in the future.” 

The course emphasizes increasing employees’ knowledge about liquor laws, the importance of preventing underage sales, and sales to visibly intoxicated individuals, as well as building the skills necessary to handle refusing service when necessary. Employees will receive training on best practices to identify minors, false identification, and signs of visible intoxication, as well as develop the skills needed to refuse service, when necessary. Training employees through this 3-hour course may lead to reduced insurance rates for businesses and will help reduce the risk of making costly and/or tragic unlawful sales.

On September 24, 2020, the off-premise course for stores licensed to sell alcohol for consumption at another location will begin at 8:30 am, and the on-premise course will begin at 12:30 p.m. To register, click on this link: https://forms.gle/yukk69U7u41RQwGKA and choose the session you would like to attend, provide the information needed for your certificate, and take the pre-test.

For more information or to schedule a dedicated training for 6 or more employees, please contact Tara Young at 667-7171 or tara@healthyacadia.org.

Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that engages in a broad range of initiatives to build healthier communities and make it easier for people to lead healthy lives across Washington and Hancock counties, Maine. Learn more at www.HealthyAcadia.org.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Women’s Recovery Residence Now Accepting Applications


Washington County's first recovery residence for women and their children is now accepting applications for residents. Safe Harbor: A Recovery Home for Women and Children, is the result of a collaborative effort between Healthy Acadia, Downeast Community Partners, Aroostook Mental Health Center, and the Community Caring Collaborative (CCC) to provide a safe, supportive, affordable living environment for women in recovery. The partners are part of the Washington County Substance Use Response Collaborative, a collaborative of over 25 Washington County nonprofit partners and individuals in recovery which has convened regularly since 2016 to address the broad impacts of substance use disorder. 


One of the many adverse impacts of living with substance use disorder is the toll it takes on financial stability, employment, criminal records, and other aspects of life necessary to secure housing. The profound impact of Maine’s growing housing shortage on people entering recovery prompted the Collaborative to form a housing subcommittee in early 2019, with individuals in recovery or with loved ones facing substance use disorder as leading voices. 


The Collaborative’s decision to open a recovery residence in the region is based on acute need, as well as successful models established elsewhere in Maine and across the country. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, recovery homes are viable and cost-effective alternatives to established recovery-oriented systems of care because they provide safe and healthy environments that support residents in their recovery. These communities empower people by providing support as they transition towards living independent and productive lives.


"People in recovery require more than clinical treatment to succeed," says House Manager, Katie Sell. "At a minimum, they need a safe place to live: a place that supports their efforts to do the difficult work of rebuilding their lives."


Safe Harbor is the first recovery residence in Downeast Maine to be certified by the Maine Association of Recovery Residences. The home will operate as a non-clinical Level 2 program, and will not provide treatment, but will support multiple and diverse pathways to recovery, including medication-assisted treatment (MAT), which is considered a best practice in the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD).


Healthy Acadia will manage staffing and programming at the Recovery Residence. Residents will participate in a variety of programmatic activities, including house meetings and recovery coaching. Coaches will work with residents who seek treatment, whether it be medication-assisted treatment, counseling, primary care, or a combination, by referring and connecting them with treatment providers. 


“Every resident will have a set of goals and will work with a Healthy Acadia Recovery Coach and will connect with other resources in the community in order to make progress toward those goals,” said Abby Frutchey, Substance Use Response Coordinator at the CCC. “For some, finding employment and being able to pay some level of rent will be a goal right away, but for others, it may be different.” 


The building, located in the town of Machias, has been renovated with support from a $150,000 grant from the Maine Housing Authority. Renovations are nearly complete, and the building, which is managed and maintained by Downeast Community Partners (DCP), will provide housing for up to five women and their children. Donations of household goods, toiletries, and other gently used items are welcome. 


Safe Harbor will serve people from Washington and Hancock counties, but residency in either county is not a requirement. Often, individuals in recovery seek to relocate temporarily in order to change patterns, be around different people, and avoid triggers that could lead to relapse. While there is much-needed focus on opioids currently, Safe Harbor will also serve women seeking recovery from other substances such as alcohol. 


Women interested in living at Safe Harbor can find the application by visiting www.HealthyAcadia.org


Healthy Acadia is currently seeking applicants for recovery residence staff, various shifts are available. Visit www.HealthyAcadia.org for more information. 


For more information about the recovery residence, including questions about donations, contact Katie Sell at (207) 255-3741 or by email at Katie.Sell@HealthyAcadia.org


Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that engages in a broad range of initiatives to build healthier communities and make it easier for people to lead healthy lives across Washington and Hancock counties, Maine. Learn more at www.HealthyAcadia.org.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Acadia National Park Announces Vehicle Reservations for the Sand Beach Entrance and Cadillac Summit Road

The National Park Service has developed a vehicle reservation system to reduce severe traffic and parking congestion so visitors can plan ahead and have a more enjoyable visit to Acadia National Park. As a pilot to prepare for the 2021 season, reservations will be required for vehicles to enter the Sand Beach Entrance and Cadillac Summit Road from October 1 to 18, 2020. Vehicle reservations are available for purchase only online at Recreation.gov.

“The majority of the park is open just as it has always been, including access to all of the carriage roads and all but a few hiking trails,” said Superintendent Kevin Schneider. “If you want to visit the park’s most popular areas during peak times with your vehicle, you now have the opportunity to guarantee access with a reservation. If you walk or bike into a vehicle reservation area, reservations are not required.”

The Sand Beach Entrance will require vehicle reservations from 7 am to 5 pm. The Cadillac Summit Road will require vehicle reservations from 4:30 am to 6:30 pm. All reservations provide a timed entry, but do not require a departure time. Reservations do not guarantee a specific parking space. If you leave the area with your vehicle, you need another reservation to re-enter. In addition to having a valid entrance pass, reservations must be purchased for $2.00 each online; reservations will not be sold at the park. Commercial tour operators with a valid Commercial Use Authorization and accredited school groups with an authorized entrance fee waiver do not require a vehicle reservation during the pilot in October. Conducting a pilot of the vehicle reservation system in October will help the park prepare a full season of vehicle reservations in 2021.