Friday, June 18, 2010

South Berwick’s Strawberry Festival Set for June 26

Always the last Saturday in June, this year the festival will be on 26 June 2010. The South Berwick Strawberry Festival officially kicks off summer for this quaint, southern Maine town of South Berwick. The kids are out of school, camps are open and the weather is getting warm. All over town one can see the bright red, white, and green strawberry flags that not only line the main streets, but can also be seen flying from many houses. The day is filled with food, entertainment, games, and crafts.
For thirty-five consecutive years, hundreds of volunteers from South Berwick have come together for a South Berwick tradition. As always, official Festival activities will take place only on the grounds of Central School, on Main Street, in the center of town. A stop at the Strawberry Festival Information Booth is a must to find out more about the day’s schedule for the entertainers, as well as where all the various activities are located and to purchase strawberry festival memorabilia.
Preparation of the strawberries start on Friday, the morning before the Festival at the Community Center, where over a hundred and fifty volunteers get together for a good old fashioned social to hull, slice, and sugar the berries. Other volunteers slice the biscuits, prepare the whipped cream and move everything under the Strawberry Shortcake tent so all will be ready for the Festival goers when it opens at 9 a.m. Things stay pretty busy for the entire Festival until it calls it quits at 4 p.m.
The Strawberry Festival Committee is pleased to announce that they we are continuing to serve Strawberry Shortcake and Cheesecake on biodegradable bowls, plates and spoons. These items are made out sugar cane called Bagasse tableware. Bagasse is the biomass remaining after sugarcane stalks are crushed to extract their juices. Additionally, we will be recycling all of the hulls from the berries for anyone who would like them for composting. The boxes and the plastic containers for the berries will also be recycled.

Old Fashion Trolleys

Transportation to and from the Festival is FREE via an old fashion trolley ride. Running every 20 minutes, the trolleys will provide free transportation to the Festival from parking locations at Marshwood Great Works School on Rt 236, Community Center on Norton St, Powder House Hill, and Agamenticus Field.

Strawberry Tent and Food

Strawberry shortcakes have always been a favorite of the Festival. They will begin serving at 9 a.m. until we run out. Last year we served up over 250 cases of fresh strawberries, 85 gallons of whipped cream and over 330 dozen biscuits. Strawberry cheesecake has also been added to the menu and complimented with, you guessed it, strawberries. The cost of these items is still only $4.
In addition to shortcakes and cheesecakes there is also a huge Food Court. There will be a pancake breakfast from 6 – 10 a.m. Throughout the day there will be other various food items sold by local non-profit groups. The Fire Dept will be selling hamburgers, hot dogs, fries and cold drinks. The Community Pantry will be serving up frozen lemon aid. Knights of Columbus--fried dough; Masons--chicken BBQ and other assorted non-profit groups serving sandwich wraps, teriyaki, nachos, fruit cups, cotton candy and water.

Road Race

The day’s activities begin at 8 a.m., a 5 mile Road Race and 2.5 mile Fun Walk, sponsored by the South Berwick Recreation Department and local businesses, kick off from Marshwood Middle School on Academy St.


Throughout the day, a variety of entertainers from around the area will be performing on two stages set up around the grounds.
At the Central School Field Stage, Marcus Gale gets things going at 9-10 a.m.; Northern Explosion Cloggers, a great group of cloggers, go on at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., and 12:30 p.m. Funky Diva’s of Gospel at 2-4 p.m.
At the Central School Front Court stage, Vic and sticks Recycled Rhythm Band at 9 and 10 a.m., Women of Note, an cappella group at 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Rylie Harrod 1:30 – 2 p.m. and Seacoast Men of Harmony at 2:30 – 4 p.m.
In the Field Area from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., there’s Wildlife Encounters. For the kids there will be a climbing wall, pony rides, a giant tiger slide, dunking booth, exotic animals’ exhibition, pony rides, a bungee jumping setup and much more.


Over 100 juried artisans will be on hand to display and sell their hand-made wares, including clothing, pottery, wood products, jewelry, paintings, photographs, candles, jams and dips, furniture, and much, much more. These crafters will be located both at the side of Central School and in the area around the food court.
Remember be kind to your pets and have them stay in the coolness of your home.
You can visit us at our website at
Photo caption: Come to South Berwick on June 26 and help celebrate the annual Strawberry Festival. (Courtesy photo)

Wine Dinner Features Eileen Crane, Founder of Domaine Carneros

By Jim Kanak
Staff Columnist
Bintliff’s Restaurant in Ogunquit is the scene of a rather rare wine dinner phenomenon this summer. While normally such dinners involve wine brokers or sales representatives, Bintliff’s dinners include the actual wine maker from the vineyard being highlighted. The first of these occurred on June 4, when Eileen Crane, the founding winemaker and CEO of Domaine Carneros of California attended a five-course dinner accompanied by two still wines and three sparkling wines from her vineyard.
“It’s very challenging to get the winemakers themselves,” said chef Norm Herbert, Jr.. “They are in high demand. When the wine maker is present, it’s a lot more fun.”
Hebert created a menu that began with a reception featuring baked brie en croute stuffed with spicy roasted pears and almonds, with a selection of Maine cheeses. Domaine Carneros Brut sparkling wine accompanied the food.
The reception was followed by an appetizer course of BBQ shrimp (paired with a Rose sparkling wine), a first course of pan roasted pork tenderloin over slow roasted peaches and Maine fiddleheads (with avant garde pinot noir) and a second course of roasted flank steak stuffed with roasted eggplant, baby spinach, goat cheese, and tomato demi-glace (with Domaine Carneros pinot noir). A dessert of lemon curd in puff pastry with grilled pineapple, Maine blueberries, and ginger syrup (with Vermeil Demi-Sec sparkling wine) completed the meal.
“We paired the wines with particular foods, trying to incorporate that spirit with the food preparation,” Hebert said. “For the first course, we made the sauce with the paired wine. That makes for a nice, cleaner package. The dessert ginger sauce was made with the sparkling wine.”
Hebert said the restaurant was sold out for the dinner, with more than twice the number of diners that usually attend such dinners at the restaurant. Part of the attraction was Crane, Hebert said. Known as America’s Doyenne of sparkling wine, Crane was selected personally by Claude Taiittinger, who founded Champagne Taiitinger in the 1970s, to lead Domaine Carneros upon its founding in 1987.
“She’s very highly ranked,” Hebert said. “The Amelia Earhart of the wine industry.”
Hebert said the restaurant tries to do four to five wine dinners each year. The next one is set for Aug. 19 and it also includes a wine maker - Peter Merriam of Merriam Vineyards in Sonoma.
“He is from New England,” said Hebert. “He owns a house here and will be the presenter and speaker.”
Hebert said the menu and price would be available on the restaurant’s website ( soon.
Photo caption: Norm Hebert, Sr. (left) and Norm Hebert, Jr., of Bintliff’s Restaurant with winemaker Eileen Crane. (Courtesy photo)

YCCC Summer Enrollment Soars

York County Community College Dean of Students, Dr. Corinne Kowpak, announced recently that the college has reached another record summer enrollment. With a total of 501 students enrolled in the 2010 Summer semester, the college has realized an increase of 41%, compared to Summer 2009, with 51% of those students being new to the college.
“In total, we have 58 sections running this semester, including 5 at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (PNSY),” Kowpak advised. “Of those sections, 77% are enrolled at 80% or more. We were very successful in developing a schedule that was responsive to the needs of the summer enrollees.” In addition to the sections offered at PNSY, 37 are being taught at the College Drive campus in Wells, while another 16 are being taught online.
“We are pleased to see continued record numbers,” offered Dr. Charles Lyons, college president. “YCCC is the youngest in the Maine Community College system, but is the fastest growing. The quality of education combined with the affordable tuition and flexible course schedule are all contributing to these impressive numbers. We are pleased to be able to accommodate those in York County looking to further their education.”