Some say river’s a ‘gem’

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LEWISTON – A decade ago, the Androscoggin River was used and abused. Few locals really thought about the river, and if they did they only considered the smell. Certainly no one prized it as a waterway.

Today, Sun Journal readers say, the river is a Twin Cities gem. It’s one of the best things in Lewiston-Auburn, they say, and it makes the community special.

“Without a doubt it’s the river. Without it there would be no L-A as we know it,” wrote Robert Poisson of Lewiston, nominating the river as a Lewiston-Auburn treasure.

Today, WGME-TV Channel 13 spotlights Lewiston-Auburn and some of its gems during the station’s noon broadcast. In partnership with that project, the Sun Journal is asking readers to share their favorite things about L-A. So far, readers have suggested 60 people, places, things and events, ranging from the well known (Bates College) to the rarely considered (Lewiston’s welcome sign).

Thorncrag Bird Sanctuary leads the pack right now. But the river and its falls come in second, earning more votes than the Basilica, Lake Auburn and the Balloon Festival combined.

“To look at the water when it’s roaring is to see at once the recent weather, the reason for the L-A’s growth in the industrial age, and back to a time when salmon were speared there,” wrote David Sysco of Lewiston in his e-mail vote.

While Thorncrag and the river top our readers’ L-A favorites today, many others have landed on the list. The Lewiston Public Library. Lost Valley in Auburn. Lewiston’s city light poles.

Even one vote for the Sun Journal.

For the next week, the newspaper will continue to gather readers’ L-A gems. Have a favorite person, place, thing or event? Let us know at ltice@sunjournal.com or by phoning 689-2854. The Sun Journal will publish the results and highlight those gems Feb. 11.

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