Swan’s Island: When in doubt, err on the side of caution

Desiree Grubbs relays important ferry news: Per Governor Janet Mills’ Executive Order 16, effective Nov. 4, face coverings must be worn in all public spaces regardless of the ability to maintain physical distance. This includes, but is not limited to, outdoor spaces like sidewalks, parking lots, waiting areas and public transportation, including the ferry. Per the order, service may be denied for noncompliance. I have received word from ferry officials that everyone, including ferry personnel, must wear a face covering. 

Donna Wiegle adds, “We all need to do our part to help control the spread of COVID-19. Our community has felt safe so far, but that may change with this latest surge. Three other islands have had COVID-19 cases in their communities; the latest is a case this week on North Haven. One confirmed case in a community can have serious consequences. The North Haven School suspended inperson education and has temporarily shifted to remote learning. Please be sure your mask fits properly, covering both your nose and mouth. Frequently wash your mask if you are using a cloth face covering. If you are using a disposable paper “surgical” mask, do not use it for weeks and weeks; throw it out and get a new one at regular intervals. 

When in doubt about the need for a face covering in public, please err on the side of caution, the love for your neighbor and the dedication to public safety measures and just wear the face covering. It only takes one match to ignite a wildfire. 

Donna Wiegle invites us to a significant learning experience: The Beth C. Wright Cancer Resource Center in Ellsworth and the Christine B. Foundation in Bangor have joined forces to present the Eastern Maine Cancer Series Survivorship: Surviving to Thriving Nov. 1719. The cancer conference will be presented virtually on the Zoom platform. You can sign up to attend one day or all three. Registration is free.  

I am honored to be the keynote speaker on Nov. 18 when I will speak about Staying Positive While Navigating Cancer, followed by a moderated panel discussion with other cancer patients who are living their lives in a positive way. Nov. 17 will feature Men and Their Cancers and Nov. 19 will be about How to Build Your Survivorship Team. To explore a detailed listing of each session and register, please go to chrisbfund.org/eastern-maine-cancer-series/.” 

Thomas Ploch provides us with a StarLink update: I have gathered the names of around 20 people so far who are interested in the public beta test of the new StarLink internet service. Early reports are showing 100 to 150 Mb/s download and 10 to 15 Mb/s upload. Compare that to the typical DLS service available in the community of 5 to 10 Mb/s download and generally 0.5 to 0.9 Mb/s upload. This could be a short to mediumterm solution for those people who have an immediate need for work or other activities. 

If you are interested and haven’t already, please add your name to my list on Facebook and, as importantly, add your name to the StarLink list at starlink.com. It will cost you nothing now to include your name on both lists. Once I get closer to the needed 30 participants, I will again talk to StarLink about opening the service to Swan’s Island. At the moment, the initial cost is about $500 for the equipment and $100 per month for the service. 

As mentioned previously, the Swan’s Island Broadband committee will continue to pursue a fiber to the premises solution with a goal of 1000 Mb/s both up and down. Once funding is secured, it will take from 18 to 24 months for rollout to the island. If you are reluctant to install StarLink yourself, town resident River Conte might be able to provide you a cost estimate for professional installation. 

We extend our solaces to Sonny and Lisa Stanley who recently lost their beloved pet. These pets become a part of our community, especially on an island, and we keep Lisa and Sonny in our thoughts. 

Happy birthday to Tyler Milton Philbrook, Christine M. Harrington, Laurel LeMoine, Tom Gott, Matthew Thomas Joy, Gilbert LeMoine, Joseph W. Staples, Lincoln Bennett Johnson and Meghan Joyce.  

 If you have news to share, please email or call me by Sunday noon if you need it to be included in the following edition. Email me at [email protected] or call me at (207) 526-4488. 

Kimberly Haller

Kimberly Haller

If you have news to share, email or call me by Sunday noon if you need it to be included in the following edition. Email me at [email protected]or call me at 526-4488.

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