Director of Human Resources, Training & Public Relations Officer
One College Drive
Calais, ME 04619
Name: Tina Erskine
Phone: (207) 454-1002
Date Submitted: September 19, 2014
CALAIS _ Rock ‘n Roll tinged with some toe-tapping bluegrass music will be part of the 6th annual Ken and Jane Brooks and Friends Homecoming Concert on Saturday, Oct. 11, at Washington County Community College.
The show starts at 7 p.m. and will be held in the lecture hall.
Since their concert last year, it has been an amazing time for the couple who in 2012 received the Vocal Duo of the Year Award from the Maine Country Music Association. Also in 2012, Ken Brooks was inducted into the Maine Country Music Hall of Fame. This year the couple has been nominated as the 2014 Vocal Duo by the Maine Academy of Country Music.
Soon the musical duo will be back in Calais along with Eric Boothroyd. “Eric was with us last year and it went over so well we asked him to come back this year,” Ken Brooks said during a recent interview at the college.
According to Brooks, Boothroyd is an outstanding musician with years of experience who plays the acoustic guitar. “His initial background was in rock n’ roll, he later transitioned into bluegrass music,” Brooks said. Boothroyd started out with a rock and roll band in Connecticut later moving to Maine where he joined the Misty Mountaineers Bluegrass band. Since then he has played with other Maine bluegrass bands. “He is truly an accomplished musician,” Brooks said. “Every time we’ve been here we have brought different people and they all have been well received, but Boothroyd is so entertaining he is really well liked.”
Although the program will consist of traditional bluegrass, country and folk music, Boothroyd and the Brooks also will play some vintage rock and roll. “I think we are going to do a little more rock n’ roll than last year,” he said. “There will be some Simon and Garfunkel and other songs.”
Brooks, who is a true musical talent, began his career more than 45 years ago. He has played at clubs, fairs, concert halls and festivals throughout Canada and the U.S. including Nashville, Tennessee.
In 1965, he regularly performed at the Jonesport Opry House. From 1988 to 1996, Ken was the lead vocalist and guitarist for Bluegrass Supply Company, one of the most popular and best known Bluegrass bands in the Northeast. Since that time he has performed with other Maine bands including Union River Band, Bob and Grace French and the Rainbow Valley Folks and Fox Hollow. He also performed with Paul Stookey of Peter, Paul and Mary fame. He is presently a member of the Katahdin Valley Boys, an award-winning bluegrass band.
He has recorded 10 albums and has appeared as a backup musician on others.
Besides his musical talent, Brooks also is a talented artist. He has painted everything from wall murals to pictures on the sides of trucks. He also does lettering and his graphic artistry is much sought after by motorcycle enthusiasts.
At the concert, music goers will have an opportunity to win a limited-edition print of a pencil drawing done by Ken Brooks. The matting and framing was donated by School Street Picture Framing in Brewer. In addition to some of the proceeds from the concert, the proceeds from the picture raffle will go to the couples’ WCCC scholarship fund and to the Calais High School Band program.
They hope to sell 100 tickets at $5 each. They already have sold 60 tickets at past concerts.
As part of the WCCC scholarship program, one of their scholarships goes to a Maine Veteran.
Nearly six years ago, the Brooks and other musicians became involved with a musical effort of patriotic songs through Maine Highlands Honors The Fallen CD project. They raised money for veterans through the sale of the CD from that musical effort. In the past few years, proceeds have gone to a Maine veteran attending WCCC. Last year as a result of their concert, they gave out two scholarships, one to a Maine veteran and one to a non-veteran.
When the couple returns to Calais later this year, they also plan to hold a workshop at the high school with music students. “One of the things that we are pleased about while doing these workshops is that many of the students tell us they plan to go to college,” he said. “Kids that study music are learning discipline and we love to work with them and try and perpetuate some of that responsibility in the students,” he said.
The couple attended Robbinston Grammar School and Calais Memorial High School. Ken served four years in the US Air Force.
Jane found her bluegrass roots when she and Ken were married in 1987. Several years ago when Ken was not playing in a band, Jane decided to learn to play an instrument. She chose the bass. The couple has been performing as a duet act since 2004. Jane Brooks has also performed as a member of Fox Hollow.
Anyone who would like to donate can make checks payable to the Ken and Jane Brooks Scholarship and send it to WCCC, One College Drive, Calais. All gifts to WCCC are tax deductible. There also will be a donation box for those who wish to donate the night of the concert.
The concert is co-sponsored by Greystone Bed and Breakfast, the Wickachee Dining Room and WCCC
Admission is $15 at the door, $12 advance sale and $10 for WCCC students with student ID, High School students and children.
Name: WCCC Public Relations Department
Phone: (207) 454-1002
Date Submitted: September 23, 2014
CALAIS _ WCCC to offer classes at the Calais Methodist Homes
Washington County Community College is delighted to announce the offering of a new program for the area's older adults. The "Senior Arts” program is intended to provide an opportunity for our older residents to add life to their years by participating in new and novel learning activities.
In announcing the program, WCCC President Joseph Cassidy said, “At WCCC we believe in our obligation to serve all the people of our region. We especially value our senior citizens who have blessed us with their support over the years. We know from research that active minds are healthy minds and that participating in learning activities such as those we are developing can be highly beneficial to older adults. WCCC has been honored as one of the best community colleges in America, in part because we care about all the people we serve, young and old. We owe a great debt to our seniors and this is one small way of saying thanks."
The first class in the Senior Arts series is Awakening Your Inner Artist. Local Artist and Jewelry Designer Heather Perry is the creator and instructor of this course which is intended to help people raise their own unique talents or hobbies to a whole new level of artistry. No experience is required. All one needs is a positive attitude and a desire to learn new things.
The class will be held on Thursday mornings from 9:00 until noon at the Methodist Homes Recreation Hall beginning on October 9th. An informational session will be held on October 2nd at 9:00 am in the same location. Heather Perry and WCCC Academic Dean David Sousa will be on hand to answer questions and to provide information about the program.
St Croix Tissue is building a new state-of-the-art automated facility co-located on the Woodland Pulp site in Baileyville, creating up to 80 new jobs beginning in May 2015. Washington County Community College and St Croix Tissue are partnering to offer a special FREE training program for potential new employees.
In addition to pulp and papermaking classes, the eight courses cover math, communications, basic computer skills and safety. The program will be offered in the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 semesters at WCCC. Applicants to the program must be Maine residents, and submit official High School transcripts, GED or HiSET to be considered.
GET YOUR FOOT IN THE DOOR
Students who successfully complete the St Croix Tissue Program at Washington County Community College will be well prepared to work in this type of environment and will be guaranteed an interview for one of the 80 new positions. This is a chance to get to the head of the line. And it’s FREE!
Call 1-207-454-1012 or visit www.wccc.me.edu/st_croix
Apply today. Space is limited. Application deadline September 5, 2014.
Name: Scott Harriman
Phone: (207) 454-1012 or 214-3760
Date Submitted: July 29, 2014
Updated: 4:40p.m. 7/29/14
CALAIS and BAILEYVILLE - Washington County Community College and St. Croix Tissue, Inc. have announced a partnership that will lead to high-paying paper making jobs for workers in Downeast Maine.
St. Croix Tissue, Inc. announced earlier this year its plans to build a new state-of-the-art tissue paper production facility located in Baileyville, Maine. The company will be creating as many as 80 new jobs and will begin large-scale hiring in May 2015. The company and WCCC have partnered to design a one-year training program, to be offered at no cost to participants that will give those individuals who successfully complete the program the skills they need to be well prepared to compete for those new jobs. Additionally, those who successfully complete the program will be guaranteed an interview by St. Croix Tissue, Inc. next spring.
For its part, WCCC will partner with Kennebec Valley Community College (KVCC), located in Fairfield, Maine, to bring several of KVCC’s pulp and paper making classes to WCCC’s Calais campus. “KVCC is delighted that key elements of our long-standing Pulp and Paper program will help to support WCCC and St. Croix in developing needed skills among the workforce Downeast. This is a fantastic opportunity for the Maine Community College System to leverage inter-campus collaboration for cross-regional benefit.” said KVCC President, Rick Hopper.
Additional classes - including math, communications, basic computer skills, and safety training - will be offered by WCCC. A grant from the Maine Quality Centers program, an initiative of the Maine Community College System, will enable WCCC to offer the training at no cost to up to 40 Maine residents.
“This is a great opportunity for men and women in eastern Maine to get their foot in the door with St. Croix Tissue. The jobs being created will be high-paying jobs in a high-end professional setting.” said WCCC President, Joe Cassidy.
“Individuals who successfully complete this program will be head and shoulders above their peers as candidates for the jobs we are creating in Baileyville.” said Tissue Manager, Martin Richard.
The program will begin in late September and will run through late April of next year. Applicants must be a Maine resident and hold a high school diploma, GED, or HiSet certificate to be eligible. For more information, please contact WCCC at 454-1012. The deadline for applications is September 5, 2014