Starting at the revitalization of Bangor, we visited the new Hollywood Casino and Hotel, the new Convention center under construction. Then U Maine at Orono and the amazing Composites Center where they are inventing boats, bridges, bulletproof panels, wind turbines and engineered lumber.
Day 2 saw a tour of Madison Paper mill where they produce vast amounts of paper for magazines and catalogs with less and less energy use. Then Bingham Health Center where rural residents have started both medical and dental clinics for everyone in the community on a sliding scale. Then the Poland Springs Bottling Plant which would have made Willy Wonka jealous. Human beings basically watch the machines work on screens. Then Thomas College in Waterville and a great panel on early childhood education.
Day 3 started in Skowhegan and the New Balance plant in an old mill building where people actually make shoes. A great environment with fitness center, onsite health assistance, and a real ethic of working together. The Margaret Chase Smith Library is a great facility in Skowhegan and we heard the Skowhegan Collaborative talk about their efforts. The town jail is now a grist mill, there is an excellent farmers' market, and people are working together on health and education issues. We then saw Good Will-Hinckley School and Kennebec Valley Community College site.
Three days - stimulating, exciting and exhausting.