Friday, March 16, 2012

Maine Red Claws/Maine McDonald’s Team of the Year Award Recipients Announced


At the Maine McDonald’s® High School Senior All-Star Basketball Games, on Saturday, March 10, the two Team of the Year Award recipients were unveiled. The Hampden Academy Boys Team and the Wells High School Girls Team each received the Team of the Year trophy as well as $1,000 for their schools’ basketball programs. Representatives from the Maine Red Claws, Maine McDonald’s and Maine Association of Basketball Coaches (MABC) made the announcement during half time at the All-Star Games.

“We are excited and honored to announce that the Hampden Academy Boys led by Coach Russ Bartlett and the Wells High School Girls, led by Coach Don Abbott, are our 2012 Team of the Year Award honorees. Both of these programs are shining examples of what it means to be named Team of the Year—excellence on the court and in the community,” stated Doug Quagliaroli, local McDonald’s Owner/Operator. “We are proud to partner with the Maine Red Claws in offering this award that will benefit these two outstanding high school basketball programs.”

Nominations for the 2012 Team of the Year award were submitted to the selection committee for review. The committee is comprised of representatives from Maine McDonald’s, Maine Red Claws and the MABC. The two teams were selected based on the stated criteria of having made “an exceptional impact on Maine High School Basketball and in the lives of others.”

“The Maine Red Claws are proud to partner with McDonald’s again this year on the Maine McDonald's and Maine Red Claws Team of the Year Award, and we are proud to recognize the Hampden Academy Boys and the Wells High School Girls teams with this year’s award,” said Red Claws President and General Manager Jon Jennings. “Each of these teams is a tremendous example of the impact that basketball can have on an individual and on a community as a whole. They show that a team can be not only competitive on the court but also have an equal and even more lasting impact off.”

Hard work and dedication on and off the court are words used to describe the Wells High School Girls Team. The Wells Girls have a deep understanding of team concept and are selfless in their play—one of many qualities that contributed to their success this year. The team is a close-knit group that plays the game with mental and physical toughness every day.

Along with teaching the game of basketball, Coach Abbott and his staff teach good sportsmanship and the importance of being a role model to younger players. In the last three years, the Wells Girls teams have raised more than $57,000 for Breast Cancer Living Well programs at York Hospital in Wells and York Hospital. This season alone they raised nearly $27,000 through their third annual Shootin’ for a Cure event and by partnering with the Wells Rotary Club’s annual golf tournament.

To quote a Wells Girls Team nominator, “The fact that each girl had an integral part in all that was done and that they learned how important it is to do for others…to serve, is a wonderful lesson being taught by Coach Abbott. I'm very impressed with these girls and this program.”

Photo Caption: Wells High School Girls’ Basketball, Maine McDonald’s Team of the Tear recipients, are pictured while at their “Shootin’ For A Cure” event on Saturday, January 14. (Courtesy Photo)

Jonathan's Restaurant Calls All Diners To Help With UNICEF TAP Project


In 2007, the UNICEF Tap Project was born in New York City. Based upon a simple concept, the Project asked that restaurants ask their patrons to donate $1 or more for the tap water they usually enjoy for free, and all of the funds raised would support UNICEF's efforts to bring clean and accessible water to millions of children around the world.

Since its inception in 2007, the UNICEF Tap Project has raised nearly $3 million in the U.S. and has helped provide clean water for millions of children globally. Now in its sixth year, the award-winning UNICEF Tap Project—a nationwide campaign sponsored by the U.S. Fund for UNICEF—will return during World Water Week, March 19-25. The first program of its kind, the UNICEF Tap Project has become a dynamic movement that affords everyone the opportunity to help provide the world's children with safe, clean water.

Jonathan's restaurant in Ogunquit is the only participating restaurant in the state of Maine at this time.

Through numerous fundraising and volunteer activities, the UNICEF Tap Project celebrates the clean water we enjoy on a daily basis by encouraging celebrity, restaurant, volunteer, corporate and government supporters to give this vital resource to children in developing countries. The concept is basic and compelling, "When You Take Water, Give Water."

2012 UNICEF Tap Project Funds will specifically target Togo, Vietnam, Mauritania and Cameroon.

Every day 4,100 children die of water-related diseases. Nearly 900 million people worldwide lack access to safe drinking water. With just $1 raised through the UNICEF Tap Project can provide a child with safe water for 40 days. The simple act of washing a child's face with clean water can prevent debilitating diseases-like blinding trachoma, an infectious eye disease that spreads from child to child. The world's leading cause of preventable blindness, blinding trachoma is endemic in 57 countries, with 1.2 billion people living in trachoma-endemic areas, primarily in the poorest communities in the developing world-meaning millions of children without access to clean water are at risk of becoming blind from trachoma.

During the UNICEF Tap Project week from Thursday, March 22, through Sunday, March 25, you may donate $1 or more for the usually free tap water that you enjoy while dining at Jonathan's Restaurant. The donation will be added to your bill as a part of your check. All funds raised will support UNICEF's efforts to bring safe, clean and accessible water to the millions of children around the world who need it.

Great Works Regional Land Trust Is Funded By Kate the Great Fans


A historic brew has become something of a boon for land conservation thanks to the Portsmouth Brewery owners, staff, consumers, and the brewer himself! Great Works Regional Land Trust has been awarded a $5,000 charitable donation from scratch ticket sales for the purchase of Kate the Great.

This coveted Russian Imperial Stout is brewed each year from a secret recipe created by Tod Mott, head brewer for Portsmouth Brewery. Its 2012 issue flowed from the taps for public consumption on Monday, March 5, and Great Works representatives were on hand for the fanfare as ticket winners gathered to purchase their brew.

“I really enjoyed meeting Peter Egelston and Joanne Francis, Portsmouth Brewery’s owners, and we are grateful for their support,” said Jack Kareckas, president of the Great Works board of directors. “An unrestricted donation like this is often hard to get. It allows us the flexibility to meet operating expenses as well as unanticipated needs,” he said. Jennifer Fox, another board member, was also present to acknowledge the donation.

Mott, the creative force behind Kate the Great, says he named his concoction after the 18th century Empress Catherine the Great. The brew was originally created in England and sent to her as an alternative to the intensity of Russian vodka. The strong black ale has a roasty, coffee-like flavor with fruity undertones, he says, resulting from of a blend of many types of malt, complex hops and the addition of Port wood to the conditioning beer.

Mott and his wife Galen are members of Great Works Regional Land Trust, and were pulling for the organization to gain support. This year’s scratch ticket sale yielded $30,000 and benefited five non-profits, chosen by Portsmouth Brewery staff. Other awardees included S. E. Land Trust of NH, Sexual Assault Support Services, 3S Artspace and the Center for Wildlife.

Great Works Regional Land Trust has conserved over 4,800 acres, including 57 properties owned and 29 under conservation easement, in the towns of Eliot, South Berwick, Berwick, North Berwick, Wells and Ogunquit, and the region. Most of the lands are open to the public, and visitors are welcome at the organization’s Beach Plum Farm office on Route 1 in Ogunquit. For information on membership, volunteering, and a calendar of hikes and other events, contact Patti Mitchem or Anne Gamble at (207) 646-3604 or

Photo Caption: Jennifer Fox and Jack Kareckas of Great Works Regional Land Trust thank Peter Egelston, founder and president of Portsmouth Brewery. (Courtesy Photo)