Friday, November 30, 2012

Nickelodeon Greenlights ‘iCarly-Victorious’ Spinoff: Sam & Cat


Santa Monica, California – On the heels of last week’s series finale of iCarly that topped all basic cable with 6.4 million total viewers, Nickelodeon is announcing the series pick-up of  Sam & Cat (20 episodes), a spin-off comedy from award-winning creator and executive producer Dan Schneider (iCarly, Victorious, Drake & Josh,  Zoey 101). Starring Jennette McCurdy (iCarly’s  Sam Puckett) and Ariana Grande (Victorious’ Cat  Valentine) reprising their roles from their respective hit shows,  Sam & Cat features the pair as unlikely roommates who become teen entrepreneurs by starting their own after-school babysitting business. Sam &  Cat will premiere in  2013, with production beginning this January in Los
Angeles.

“Jennette and Ariana are adored by our audience, and it’s great to unite these talented actresses in this hilarious new comedy from Dan Schneider," said Russell Hicks, President, Content Development and Production, Nickelodeon.  “This show promises to deliver on what our audience loves most about these two favorite characters -- laugh-out-loud humor and non-stop adventure, and is sure to be a compelling new chapter for our new comedic duo.”

Best known for her comedic portrayal of Sam Puckett on the mega-hit Nickelodeon series iCarly, Jennette McCurdy most recently wrapped production on Nickelodeon’s original TV movie Swindle.  In addition, she

Entries Sought for Maine Poultry Coop Contest

In recognition and celebration of the growing popularity of poultry raising, the Maine Poultry Growers Association and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension are sponsoring the first Maine Poultry Coop Contest.

The purpose of the contest is to showcase the many and varied coop designs used by Maine poultry keepers and enthusiasts. Poultry owners are invited to enter a photo and description of their coops by Dec. 31, 2012.

The Maine Poultry Growers Association will award prizes of $200, $100, $50 to the top three entries, respectively. Fourth and fifth place winners will receive a subscription to Backyard Poultry magazine.

All entrants must be Maine residents. Entries must include at least one coop photo (not more than three photos) and a completed entry form. Entry forms and photos may be submitted online, in person or mailed to: Poultry Coop Contest, University of
Maine Cooperative Extension, 75 Clearwater Drive, Falmouth, Maine 04105

Coops may be seasonal, year-round, stationary or mobile. They may be multipurpose and need not be original designs.

A team of judges will evaluate each entry based on specific criteria, including design, purpose, space, construction materials, safety, cost and unique features. Winning entries will be announced at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show Jan. 9, 2013 at
the Augusta Civic Center. Entrants need not be present to win.

More information and the entry form are online (umaine.edu/livestock/poultry/coop-contest) or available by contacting Andrea Herr, 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (toll free in Maine only).


Dahlov Ipcar Book Signing and StoryWalk® A Success


NOTED AUTHOR CELEBRATED AT RECENT COMMUNITY EVENTS
Dahlov Ipcar Book Signing and StoryWalk® A Success

Brunswick, ME—Hundreds of community members joined Mid Coast Hospital at two recent events that featured local artist and children’s author, Dahlov Ipcar.

Earlier this month, the Mid Coast Hospital Auxiliary hosted the beloved author at the hospital’s fifth annual book signing featuring her latest republished book, Stripes and Spots, and her new board book, Maine Alphabet. Originally scheduled to run for two hours, the event ran well past the closing time.

The proceeds benefited the Auxiliary’s $150,000 pledge for the Walk-in Clinic in downtown Brunswick as well as health career scholarships offered to Midcoast area students. Following the book signing, Ipcar was joined by members of the Auxiliary and friends for an intimate celebration of her 95th birthday, which was November 12.

The following week, Ipcar joined Carol McFadden, Children’s Librarian, and members of the hospital’s Community Education and Outreach Team at the Patten Free Library in Bath to unveil the Wild Animal AlphabetStoryWalk, based on her board book of the same name. During the event participants listened as Ipcar read her colorful story and then were invited to try out the new StoryWalk.

Participants joined Jessica Loney, Mid Coast Hospital’s 5-2-1-0 Let’s Go! Program Coordinator to follow a series of storyboard pages that were set up throughout the library, prompting activities such as “jumping like an antelope” and “slithering like a snake.“

The StoryWalk is aportable resource, developed by Mid Coast Hospital as a tool for use by local schools and community partners to promote 5-2-1-0 Let’s Go!, a statewide program that encourages children to make healthy choices. These include: eating five or more fruits and vegetables per day, limiting screen time to two hours per day, engaging in one hour or more of physical activity per day, and limiting sugarsweetened beverages to zero by choosing water or low fat milk instead.

Ipcar is a treasured friend of the hospital and an invaluable contributor to the Midcoast community. Large format murals by the artist are available for viewing at both the hospital and at the Patten Free Library. Additionally, Island Port Press has republished seven of her original books and published three new board books for enjoyment by generations to come. Wild Animal Alphabet and other books are available for purchase at www.islandportpress.com<http://www.islandportpress.com>, the hospital Gift Shop, and local bookstores.

All Aboard for the Maine State Museum!

Model Railroad Celebration and Free Admission Highlight Museum Activities on December 7 and 8
Augusta, Maine - Whether making a first-time discovery of model trains chugging along the tracks or revisiting memories of days gone by, family members of all ages will delight in the sights and sounds of the Model Railroad Celebration at the Maine State Museum in Augusta. The two-day event runs on Friday, December 7 from 9 am to 4pm and Saturday, December 8 from 10 am to 3 pm. The museum will be open free of charge both days.

The celebration will feature two clubs; the Great Falls Model Railroad Club and the Maine 3-Railers Club members will set up and operate a variety of displays running G, HO, O, and N-gauge model trains.

The link between model trains and the holidays has an historic connection. The first regularly scheduled passenger train in the United States began in 1830 on Christmas Day. Toy trains appeared soon after, as railroads came into regular use. Long before electricity was a mainstay in homes, children and adults constructed model motorized trains that ran on steam power.

Trains figure prominently in the museum's collections. Most notably, the 1846 Lion, one of America's earliest surviving steam locomotives, continues to be a popular attraction as it greets visitors at the museum's entrance.

The Maine State Museum is located at 230 State Street in Augusta, adjacent to the Maine State House.  The Museum is open Tuesday through Friday 9am-5pm, Saturday 10am-4pm, closed Sunday and Monday.  For more information check the museum’s website: www.mainestatemuseum.org

“The Power of Breath”


“The Power of Breath” December 10

The Brown Bag Lunch “Wellness” series continues on Monday, December 10 at noon at the Camden Public Library with a presentation on “The Power of Breath” by Terry-Anne Miller. “Often we take the act of breathing for granted,” says Miller. “When we are physically or emotionally depleted, our breath is in the forefront of immune defense that gets compromised. This presentation will give participants an opportunity to understand the health benefits of specific breath practices and experience the feeling the Power of Conscious Breathing can have on mind and body.”

Terry-Anne Miller has spent the past 35 years using her skills from the medical sciences and holistic healing arts to help people find peace in mind and body. She combines the science of yoga therapy including pranayama and meditation, craniosacral and trauma release therapies, and spiritual mentoring in her work.

The Wellness Brown Bag Lunch series is a collaboration of the library and the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce, held on the second Monday of each month at noon. Upcoming Wellness topics will include: Terry Cline on Architecture and Wellness on January 14; Mimi McGee on Food for Life on February 11; Deb Moskowitz on pediatric applications of Naturopathic Medicine on March 11; Tami Rogers on Reiki on April 8; and Barb MacDonald on “What is Naturopathic Medicine and How Does It Optimize Health”  on March 13.


“Hero’s Journey” Free Writing Workshop


“Hero’s Journey” Free Writing Workshop December 9

The Camden Public Library will host a free writer’s workshop led by Teresa Piccari on Sunday, December 9, 2:00-4:00 pm. The workshop will be based on the elements of The Hero’s Journey, as conceived by the late scholar Joseph Campbell, and enriched by mythic tradition. Writing coach and instructor Teresa Piccari will detail how The Hero’s Journey provides a reliable and creative structure for storytelling. Discussion will be encouraged, and there will be in-session writing exercises designed to demonstrate the value of applying The Hero’s Journey to your creative work.

Piccari, proprietor of The Village Scribe at The Wellness Center in Camden, teaches Creative Writing, Books/Project, Memoir/Personal Essay, and Creative Process workshops. She also provides creative coaching, for all art forms, on an individual basis. She says, “In October I celebrated my seventh anniversary of living in Maine. It has been quite a journey for me in this new culture! As part of this, I have a desire to give back to both the Camden Library and the community, doing what it is I do as my personal way of saying ‘thank you’ to Camden.”



“Maine Home Cooking”


“Maine Home Cooking” with Sandy Oliver December 18

Sandra L. Oliver is a pioneering food historian and freelance food writer, with her column “Taste Buds” appearing each weekend in the Bangor Daily News. Sandra Oliver brings the traditions and recipes of generations of Maine home cooks to life in her new book, Maine Home Cooking: 175 Recipes from Down East Kitchens. She will be talking about downeast cooking and about her book at the Camden Public Library on Tuesday evening, December 18, at 7:00 pm. The Owl & Turtle Book Store will have books on hand for purchase and signing, just in time for Christmas!

Peppered with funny and useful advice from her island kitchen and garden, the book is chock-full of wisdom and stories. Whether you need a quick weekday meal or are indulging in a verified New England feast, the recipes are a delicious way to eat well and experience the culinary lineage of Maine. Oliver is the author of Saltwater FoodwaysThe Food of Colonial and Federal America, and Giving Thanks. She lives on Islesboro, where she gardens, preserves, cooks, and teaches sustainable lifeways.

“Amen! A wonderful read. Real deal Maine home cooking as it was, is now, and (probably) ever shall be: comfort and practicality without end.” —Leslie Land, former New York Times garden columnist.

Oliver will also return to the library on January 29 as part of the library’s “Discover History” month to speak on the history of Maine’s food traditions. Sandy’s talks are filled with personal anecdotes and wide-ranging involvement gained through being a well-known columnist, essayist, and author who has written for regional and national publications, speaks throughout New England and beyond to historical societies, garden clubs, culinary groups, civic and arts organizations, libraries and book groups, and adult education programs.

Maine Home Cooking and its beautiful photos of Sandy’s Islesboro farmhouse and gardens reveal the core of who Sandy Oliver is, through what she cares about and how she expresses it. Her love of food and people is its essence, heaped with copious amounts of humor and a deep understanding of regional taste and the Mainers that make it so. And Maine Home Cooking shows us the real food of real people, drawn from their handwritten letters that come to Sandy through the mail. It’s a happy read, wonderfully meaningful and old-fashioned, and shows respect for the joys that come from home gardens, canning with glass Mason and Ball jars, and cooking in her 19th Century kitchen on a vintage Dual Atlantic combination wood and gas stove.




Gabrielle Douglas To Discuss Grace, Gold and Glory With GMA Dec. 4th

Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle Douglas will visit GMA on December 4th, 2012 to discuss her memoir "Grace, Gold and Glory.


Synopsis:
Gold-winning US gymnast and Olympic All-Around champion Gabrielle Douglas tells her personal story of faith, perseverance, and determination, demonstrating you can reach your dreams if you let yourself soar.


About "Grace, Gold and Glory:
In the 2012 London Olympics, US gymnast Gabrielle Douglas stole hearts and flew high as the All-Around Gold Medal winner, as well as acting as a critical member of the US gold-medal-winning women gymnastics team. In this personal autobiography, Gabrielle tells her story of faith, perseverance, and determination, demonstrating you can reach your dreams if you let yourself soar.

About Gabrielle Douglas:
Gabrielle Douglas is a two-time Olympic gold medalist. At the

Remarks by the President in Visit to Rodon Group Manufacturing Facility


Hatfield, Pennsylvania 
12:01 P.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody!  Thank you.  Thank you.  (Applause.)  Well, good morning, everybody.

AUDIENCE:  Good morning!

THE PRESIDENT:  Everybody, please, please have a seat.  Have a seat.  Relax for a second.  (Laughter.)

It is good to see all of you.  Hello, Hatfield!  (Applause.) It is good to be back in Pennsylvania.  And it is good to be right here at K’NEX.  (Applause.)  I want to thank Michael Araten, Robert Glickman, and the inventor of K’NEX, Joel Glickman, for hosting me today and giving me a great tour.  (Applause.)  Where did they go?  Where did they go?  I want to -- (applause) -- stand up.  Stand up so everybody can see you guys. There they are.  (Applause.)  There you go.

And I just noticed, we’ve got a couple of outstanding members of Congress here.  We’ve got Chaka Fattah -- (applause)
-- and Allyson Schwartz.  (Applause.)  

Now, I just finished getting a tour of the K’NEX workshop.  I have to say, it makes me wish that Joel had invented this stuff a little sooner, when I was a kid.  (Laughter.)  Back then, you couldn’t really build a rollercoaster out of your Erector Set.  (Laughter.)

And I also got a chance to meet some of the folks who have been working around the clock to keep up with the Christmas rush, and that’s a good thing.  These guys are Santa’s extra elves here.  They manufacture

Grand Opening of Interpretive Trail‏

Camden/Rockport, Maine - Families, Merryspring members, and members of the Midcoast community are invited to the grand opening of Merryspring’s new Interpretive Trail.  A guided tour of the Nature Center’s newest addition will be held on Sunday, December 9 at 1:30 pm.

The Interpretive Trail highlights some of Merryspring’s most unique attractions on one, easy-to-follow loop. Coupled with a hand-held interpretive guide, this tour of Merryspring provides both a natural and human history of six special places on the park’s grounds. With distinctive markers and a simple path, this new trail is a great new resource for new visitors to the park and curious members to learn more about Merryspring’s past and how humans have shaped its landscape.

Guests will meet at 1:30 p.m. in front of the Ross Center for a guided walk along the Interpretive Trail.  Brett Willard, who recently completed his one-year stint as an AmeriCorps Environmental Educator and will become Merryspring’s new Program Manager in 2013, will lead the Tour.  The program is free and open to the public. This is an outdoor program, so comfortable shoes and weather-appropriate clothing are advised. For more information, please contact Merryspring at 236-2239 or info@merryspring.org.

SAILING ON ICE

Rockland, Maine - The Apprenticeshop will host a program about ice boating on Thursday, December 13 at 7 pm as part of the school’s Second Thursdays at The Apprenticeshop lecture series.  This month, Lloyd Roberts, a longtime member of Chickawaukee Iceboaters Club Inc., Maine’s ice boating club, will describe ice boating and skate sailing in Maine over the last few decades.  Topics will include building ice boats (with plans displayed for various types of craft) finding and evaluating ice, how ice boats operate as compared to soft water craft, safety on the ice, racing, touring and non-competitive sailing, plus the physical and mental aspects of the sport.

Roberts has sailed on ice for some 30 years and wrote “Think Ice,” a book focusing on the DN ice boat, a widely used design for both beginners and competitors.  A DN (so named for a 1937 design contest winner sponsored by the

WINTHROP HANDBELL RINGERS ARE NEXT IN LITHGOW’S HOLIDAY SERIES

Augusta, Maine - The Winthrop Area Handbell Ringers return to Lithgow Public Library on Wednesday, December 12 at 6:30 p.m. for the second performance in the library’s annual Holiday Concert Series.  The free concerts are open to the public and take place in the Reading Room.
      The Winthrop Area Handbell Ringers will perform a medley of holiday favorites.  Members of the group, which was formed more than 25 years ago, are:  Mary Barnard, Laura Begenwald, Mary Alice Cook, Meg Cook, Dottie Davis, Ginny Foster, Lee Gilman, Jenifer Harrington, Director Carol Kaiser, Brenda Lake, and Lil Stresser.
      The final performance in the Lithgow Library Holiday Concert Series will be Dave Fisher and the Celtic Cowboys, who will perform on Wednesday, December 19 at 6:30 p.m.
      Lithgow Library is located at 45 Winthrop Street in Augusta.  For more information, call the library at 626-2415 or visit the library’s website at www.lithgow.lib.me.us.

LA Transit Committee Seeks Two New Reps‏

Lewiston, Maine - The Lewiston-Auburn Transit Committee (LATC)—a quasi-municipal agency providing the local public bus system, citylink—is seeking two new representatives, one from the City of Lewiston and one from the City of Auburn.  Interested individuals need not be versed in the operations of the bus system but have an interest in public transit and be available for daytime meetings.  LATC meets on the second Thursday of each month from 12:00 noon – 2:30 p.m., and members serve a three-year term.

LATC was established in 1976 by an interlocal agreement between the City of Lewiston and City of Auburn and is staffed by the Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments (AVCOG). LATC contracts with the Western Maine Transportation System for operation and maintenance of the public transportation system. In addition, LATC provides buses, radios, fare boxes, bus stop signs, and shelters, as well as oversees system marketing, setting fares, planning and scheduling, and most other policy matters.

LATC is very proud of its recently expanded Saturday public transit hours, which commenced in October 2012, and is enthusiastic about plans being developed to build a transportation center/bus terminal in Auburn.  Ridership on citylink has increased 25% over the last year.

Individuals interested in serving on the Lewiston-Auburn A Transit Committee may obtain/complete a Board & Committee Application located at www.lewistonmaine.gov/serviceapp  and www.auburnmaine.gov/Pages/Residents/Volunteer. Completed forms must be sent to the Lewiston City Clerk’s Office, 27 Pine Street (Lewiston residents) or the Auburn City Clerk’s Office, 60 Court Street (Auburn residents).

Lighting the Way and Brightening the Holidays

Belfast, Maine - Wondering how you can help brighten the lives of others this year? Join people all around Waldo and Knox County neighborhoods as they “Light the Luminarias” on Christmas eve while at the same time raising much needed funds for local charities. The sight of luminaries lighting our streets on Christmas Eve signifies our community spirit of giving. This year UMCC has given the kits a “make-over” by designing a practical and attractive red box containing 10 luminaries. Each kit will light 200 feet of curbside and includes 10 candle luminarias. The cost is still $1 for each luminary and that means your donation is $10 for the box of 10 luminaries. Stop in the Hutchinson Center to purchase yours now.

All proceeds directly benefit United Mid-Coast Charities, which provide funds to Belfast area nonprofits including: Broadreach Family Services, Waldo County YMCA, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Tanglewood 4-H Camp, Salvation Army, Meals on Wheels and many other worthy causes. (UMCC does not use any donated money for overhead costs; all money donated is given directly to the 52 organizations funded and listed in the UMCC brochure.)

Some of the retail locations selling the kits include: Renyís, Hannaford, Belfast Coop, Home Supply Center, Waldo County YMCA, and UMaine Hutchinson Center.

Nancy Boyington is once again coordinating the Waldo County Luminary project. She can be reached at the Hutchinson Center, 338-8002, or email: nancyb@maine.edu

Thanks for helping to make a difference.

Two Evenings of Mime & Tall Tales Storytelling at Heartwood

Damariscotta, Maine - It’s story-time at Heartwood this month, with two evenings of classical and physical storytelling suitable for family audiences.

On Friday, Dec. 7th, “American Tales,” an original production currently touring Midcoast schools as part of Heartwood’s school outreach program, will be available for the public to enjoy.  Designed for students, this is 50 minutes of classic story telling, with three tall tales from varying parts of America.  The show begins with Elise Voigt’s telling of the Pawnee Native American Legend, “Mud Pony.”  Elise, Millie Santiago and Beverly Mann continue with the Bayou tale of “Wiley and the Hairy Man,” and “Dust Devil,” by children’s book author, Anne Isaacs.  Don’t miss this single performance in the Parker Poe Theater at Lincoln Academy, on Friday, Dec. 7th at 7pm.  Tickets are $5/students; $10/adults. No reservations – tickets available at the door, opening at 6:30pm.

On Monday, Dec. 10th, Heartwood presents 3 premier pieces of physical storytelling, being filmed live, with Karen Montanaro (www.mimetheatre.com), a renowned dancer/mime artist/choreographer, and Jackie Reifer (www.reiferandsaccone.com), monologist and mime.

With funding from the Maine Arts Commission and NEFA, Montanaro spent the last four years creating an original piece, “The Journey,” scored by Boston-based composer Sharon Crumrine.  Montanaro’s

Film: Godspell

Blue Hill, Maine - The Friends of the Blue Hill Public Library Film Series continues on Thursday December 13th at 7:00 PM with Godspell (1973), a musical portraying the Gospel of Matthew in modern (1970’s) Manhattan.

This modern-day version of the Gospels opens with John the Baptist calling a disparate group of young New Yorkers from their workplaces to follow and learn from Jesus. They form a roving acting troupe that acts out the parables through song and dance, comedy, and mime. Jesus's Crucifixion is in a junkyard, followed by his body being carried through the streets of New York. High spirited music accompanies the song and dance, including the hit songs “Day By Day” and “Colors of the Wind.”  Dance routines filmed among the busy streets of New York City are exhilarating --this hit musical is great for the whole family.

All films are shown free of charge on the Library’s “pretty big” screen in the Howard Room.  For more information, call the Library (374-5515) or Michael Donahue, 374-5248 or Donahue.mg@gmail.com.

Opera Preview: Aida

Blue Hill, Maine - Verdi's Aida comes to the Grand in Ellsworth on Saturday, December 15th, by live simulcast from the Metropolitan Opera in New York. To help music lovers prepare for this event, the Bagaduce Music Lending Library and Friends of the Blue Hill Public Library will join together to introduce and study this theatrical journey at 1:00 PM on Friday, December 14th, in the Howard Room of the Blue Hill Public Library.

The Met's unforgettable production of Verdi's ancient Egyptian drama stars Liudmyla Monastyrska as the enslaved Ethiopian princess caught in a love triangle with the heroic Radames, played by Roberto Alagna, and the proud Egyptian princess Amneris sung by Olga Borodina. Fabio Luisi conducts.

Local opera enthusiasts Linda Lesko and David Porter will summarize the plot, introduce the music and give some ideas of special ways to enjoy the Saturday simulcast. All are welcome, no previous opera knowledge is needed, and admission is free. For more information, call the library at 374-5515.

Francis Hamabe: Small Works on Paper

Blue Hill, Maine - Blue Hill Public Library will host an exhibit featuring artwork by Francis Hamabe (1917-2002), titled “Small Works on Paper.” The exhibit is curated by Jennifer Mitchell and Anne Nevin, and will include silkscreens, small collages, watercolors, as well as copies of the recently published book, The Art of Francis Hamabe, by Carl Little. The show starts December 4th and goes through the end of the month. A portion of sales proceeds will benefit the Library.

In his book Carl Little gives a concise description of the artist’s back ground: “Born in Orange, New Jersey, the son of Japanese-Swedish parents, Hamabe studied at the Newark School of Fine Arts and the Rhode Island School of Design. Following infantry duty in World War II, he became a commercial artist, working in illustration and advertisement. Over the years, Hamabe’s graphic work appeared in The New Yorker and The Philadelphia Inquirer and on the covers of Down East and Maine Life (for a time, he was art director of the latter publication).”

Little goes on to describe Hamabe’s work. “A printmaker of the first rank, Hamabe produced numerous serigraphs and silkscreens over the years (he demonstrated the former printmaking technique, pioneering its use in Maine). He was expert at capturing the

Dog With A Blog "Bark! The Herald Angels Sing" Premieres December 2nd

Fans of the new Disney Channel series Dog With A Blog will be able to watch an all new episode this Sunday at 8pm entitled "Bark! The Herald Angels Sing". In "Bark! The Herald Angels Sing", It's the family's first Christmas together and Avery is prepping Tyler, Chloe and Stan for what will likely be their worst Christmas gifts ever - from their new stepmother Ellen who gives terrible gifts. Meanwhile, Bennett and Ellen try to decide whose Christmas traditions to follow.

Dog With A Blog stars G Hannelius ("Den Brother," "Good Luck Charlie") as Avery, Blake Michael

E-2C Hawkeye aircraft assigned to the Wallbangers.

VENTURA, Calif. (Nov. 20, 2012) E-2C Hawkeye aircraft assigned to the Wallbangers of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 117 fly over the Pacific Ocean near Ventura, Calif. VAW-117 is a command and control and airborne early Warning Squadron dedicated to deliver time critical situational awareness to warfare commanders and coalition partners. (U.S. Navy photo by Command Master Chief Spike Call/Released)



Over 3.5 million people in drought-hit areas of Africa to receive food relief from UN

In Zimbabwe, WFP is working to combat food insecurity by providing general food distributions to the at-risk populations. Photo: WFP/R. Lee

The United Nations food relief agency today announced it is scaling up its efforts to assist more than 3.5 million people in drought-hit areas of southern Africa, particularly in Malawi, Zimbabwe and Lesotho, who are now facing the start of the hunger season.

“Large numbers of smallholder farmers and their families are in the grip of what is set to be one of the harshest hunger seasons of recent years,” said the World Food Programme’s (WFP) Deputy Regional Director for Southern Africa, Brenda Barton.

“With the help of governments, donors and regional organizations, we’re mobilizing resources to help the most vulnerable, not only with food distributions,” she added, “but also with innovative solutions like cash transfers via mobile phones so people can buy their own food.”

Erratic rainfall during the last planting season meant that harvests in many areas were not sufficient to sustain the nutritional needs of farming communities this year and, even where food is available in local markets, it is

Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park Offers Winter Programs

Freeport, Maine - Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, one of Maine's popular coastal state parks, is offering nature programs at 2 p.m. each Sunday through the winter.

Park visitors are invited to enjoy the park with their families and learn something new from the park's knowledgeable and dedicated staff.

Programs start at the circle of benches at the end of the second parking lot and may include walks, talks, and activities in a beautiful natural setting. The programs, which are based on the park's natural surroundings, will last about one hour, weather permitting.

No reservations needed except for group use, and the nature programs are free with park admission. Admission is $1 for ages 5-11; $3 for Maine residents ages 12-64; $4.50 for non-residents ages 12-64; $1.50 for non-residents 65 and older. Children under 5 and Maine residents 65 and older are free. For more information or to arrange for group visits, call 865-4465.

Dec. 2 -- Ready, Set, Sleep! - Discover how nature prepares for winter in this program for children and fun-loving adults. 2 p.m., meet at circle of benches by second parking lot. One hour program, weather permitting. Free with park admission. Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, Freeport. 865-4465.

Dec. 9 -- Mammals of Maine - Add to your knowledge and appreciation of the ways in which the park's mammals survive winter. 2 p.m., meet at circle of benches by second parking lot. One hour program, weather permitting. Free with park admission. Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, Freeport. 865-4465.

Dec. 16 -- Winter Birds at Wolfe's Neck - Discover the needs and adaptations of the park's birds and the ways in which people can help birds around their homes survive winter. 2 p.m., meet at circle of benches by second parking lot, One hour program, weather permitting. Free with park admission. Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, Freeport. 865-4465.

Dec. 23 -- Winter in the Woods - Increase your understanding and appreciation of some of the ways in which plants and animals survive winter. 2 p.m., meet at circle of benches by second parking lot, One hour program, weather permitting. Free with park admission. Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, Freeport. 865-4465.

Dec. 30 -- Plants alive in a Cold World - Learn the strategies of the park's plants for surviving winter. 2 p.m., meet at circle of benches by second parking lot, 1 hour program, weather permitting. Free with park admission. Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, Freeport. 865-4465

New Show Sam & Cat Gets 20 Episodes

According to Nickelodeon: We knew that Jennette McCurdy and Ariana Grande have been spotted heading to the set together, filming a brand new pilot starring their classic Victorious and iCarly characters. But now it's official. Sam and Cat are back! The ham-gobbling wise-cracker Sam Puckett and the adorably spacey Cat Valentine are joining forces to bring us an all new reason to LOL...the new show, Sam & Cat!


In case you don't already know, here's the deets on the show. After becoming best buds and roomies, Sam and Cat start to realize that life isn't all fun and games. And there's one thing that's vital to supporting their

President's Schedule - November 30, 2012


10:10 AM
The President departs the White House en route Joint Base Andrews
South Lawn
10:25 AM
The President departs Joint Base Andrews
11:05 AM
The President arrives Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia International Airport
11:45 AM
The President tours The Rodon Group manufacturing facility
Hatfield, Pennsylvania, The Rodon Group Manufacturing Facility
12:05 PM
The President delivers remarks
Hatfield, Pennsylvania, The Rodon Group Manufacturing Facility

2:00 PM
The President departs Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia International Airport

2:40 PM
The President arrives Joint Base Andrews
2:55 PM
The President arrives the White House
South Lawn


DEPARTMENT OF STATE PUBLIC SCHEDULE FRIDAY


U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
PUBLIC SCHEDULE
FRIDAY NOVEMBER 30, 2012


SECRETARY HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON

12:15 p.m. Secretary Clinton delivers remarks at the Art in Embassies 50th Anniversary luncheon, at the Department of State.

4:15 p.m. Secretary Clinton meets with Lakhdar Brahimi Joint Special Representative for Syria, in Washington, DC.

7:00 p.m. 
Secretary Clinton holds brief meetings with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh, and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, at the Willard Hotel, in Washington, DC.

7:45 p.m.
 Secretary Clinton delivers remarks at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy 2012 Saban Forum opening Gala Dinner, at the Willard Hotel, in Washington,

DEPUTY SECRETARY BILL BURNS

9:45 a.m. Deputy Secretary Burns meets with Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, Commander, U.S. Pacific Command, at the Department of State.

11:15 a.m. Deputy Secretary Burns meets with Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, at the Department of State.

3:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Burns meets with Mark Sedwill, UK Political Director, at the Department of State.

4:15 p.m. Deputy Secretary Burns meets with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, at the Department of State.

DEPUTY SECRETARY TOM NIDES 

10:30 a.m. Deputy Secretary Nides attends a meeting at the White House.

12:15 p.m. 
Deputy Secretary Nides attends the Art in Embassies 50th Anniversary luncheon, at the Department of State.

2:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Ambassador Tina Kaidainow, at the Department of State.

3:00 p.m.
 Deputy Secretary Nides meets with Pakistan Finance Minister Abdul Hafeez Shaikh, at the Department of State.

3:30 p.m. Deputy Secretary Nides hosts the U.S.-Pakistan Economic and Finance Working Group, at the Department of State.

UNDER SECRETARY FOR POLITICAL AFFAIRS WENDY SHERMAN

Under Secretary Sherman is on foreign travel in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan for official meetings.

Musician Spotlight: Singer & Songwriter Gavyn Bailey

There's a talented 14 year old Singer & Songwriter in Orange County, California whose good singing vocals got our attention. This 14 year old is Gavyn Bailey whose a Singer & Songwriter.

Fourteen-year-old Gavyn Bailey is a rising star who's taking his pain and channeling into music" CBS's Suzie Suh quotes, and that's exactly what young Gavyn is doing. Born with Kidney Failure and a passion for music, his dream is to inspire others and make a difference through his lyrics. Gavyn first picked up a microphone at age three, fisherprice of course, at the hospital post transplant. "He started singing for all the kids on the floor and even put on a show in the playroom" his mother, Giselle, said in an interview. Now at age fourteen, Gavyn has acquired a tremendous amount of musical knowledge and experience even at a young age which has exposed him to the positive effects that music plays in peoples lives. This is

President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney

President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney talk in the Oval Office following their lunch, Nov. 29, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)


First Lady Ann LePage Announces Selected Artists for Maine is ME Art Challenge

First Lady partners with the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy to create Love.Read.Learn!™ Baby Journal
Augusta, Maine - First Lady Ann M. LePage is announcing the selected artists for the Maine is ME Student Art Challenge. Artwork was submitted by 867 children in grades K-8 throughout Maine. The selected artwork will be featured in the First Lady’s upcoming family-friendly Love.Read.Learn!™ Baby Journal, to be published in partnership with the Barbara Bush Foundation. The journal is a scrapbook-style booklet that promotes literacy and health to Maine families with newborn babies. The baby journal will be provided at no cost to parents of newborns in 2013.

“I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to every child who participated in the Maine is ME art

Cutter Mackinaw boasts all-female underway watch during Christmas tree transit to Chicago.



LAKE MICHIGAN — Petty Officer 1st Class Erin Hunter (right), junior officer-of-the-deck on the Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, assists underway officer-of-the-deck Ensign Katharine Braynard with monitoring the electronic charting system, Nov. 28, 2012.

One day prior, Hunter and Braynard were part of an all-female watch executed on the Mackinaw during the ship's transit to Chicago to offload 1,300 Christmas trees as part of this year's Chicago's Christmas Ship event.

U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Robert Butler

LAKE MICHIGAN — Underway officer-of-the-deck Ensign Katharine Braynard (right) works with junior officer-of-the-deck, Petty Officer 1st Class Erin Hunter, with the plan for mooring in Milwaukee to offload buoys, Nov. 28, 2012.

One day prior, Braynard and Hunter were part of an all-female watch executed on the Mackinaw during the ship's transit to Chicago to offload 1,300 Christmas trees as part of this year's Chicago's Christmas Ship event.

U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Robert Butler

LAKE MICHIGAN – Female officers aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw designed and accomplished an all-female underway watch Tuesday during their transit to Chicago this week to participate in the annual re-enactment of Chicago's Christmas Ship.

The all-female watch was an idea devised last spring and was finally able to be realized this fall, once all the necessary positions were filled by qualified women.

Cmdr. Michael Davanzo, the ship’s commanding officer, was briefed on the idea and thought it was a great thing for the Mackinaw to accomplish.

"We value the leadership that women provide, demonstrated by their amazing initiative to undertake this project," Davanzo said. "The Coast Guard provides a great opportunity for women to advance, be successful, and have a rewarding career."

Lt. j.g. Meridith Palo and Ensign Katie Braynard organized the watch schedule to include all-female bridge and engineering teams and female duty cooks. The teams stood the 4-8 p.m. watch during the ship’s transit down the eastern coast of Wisconsin.

The female bridge team was: Braynard, from Temecula, Calif.; as the underway officer-of-the-deck; Petty Officer 1st Class Erin Hunter, from San Diego, as junior officer-of-the-deck; and Seaman Rebecca Smith-Heshley, from Toledo, Ohio, who stood lookout.

The engineering team was: Palo, from Newtown, Conn., as engineer-of-the-watch; Petty Officer 1st Class Brenda Daniels, from Lake Wells, Fla., as journeyman engineer; and Ensign Erin Nolan, from Lafayette, Ind., who was working towards her journeyman engineer qualification.

The two duty cooks for the evening meal were: Petty Officer 2nd Class Melissa Wetenkamp, from Niles, Mich.; and Petty Officer 2nd Class Nichol Billow, from Las Vegas.

“This was a first for the Mackinaw, and possibly for the Coast Guard," said Braynard. "It’s great to see women advance in their roles in the afloat community, and it’s even better to be part of that community. We’re all very proud.”