The Buzz: Another new restaurant going into the Auburn-Lewiston Municipal Airport

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This week, the Buzz is in full denial about how close the ski season is.

Mike and Heather Greenlaw at the new Mike’s Runway Diner at the Auburn-Lewiston Municipal Airport in Auburn. The Litchfield couple have revamped the menu from barbecue-focused to dinner comfort food like omelettes, grits and Philly cheese steaks. (Kathryn Skelton/Sun Journal)

Let’s talk grits instead.

Mike and Heather Greenlaw opened Mike’s Runway Diner on Aug. 1 at the Auburn-Lewiston Municipal Airport, revamping the menu from barbecue-centric to diner comfort food.

Mike, a garage door technician for 20 years, said he was between jobs when Tom Cerulli asked if he’d work part time to give him a hand at Backwoods BBQ & Grill at the airport. Part time became full time, and when Cerulli stepped away, it was a natural for the Litchfield couple to take it on.

“I’ve always liked cooking,” he said.

Heather has been a waitress for 30 years. What she’s liking most so far: “It’s ours, and the customers — we have a lot of support,” she said.

The new menu, updated with specials on their Facebook page, includes omelettes, grits, breakfast burritos, pork rolls and more than 15 sandwiches with fries. Food is available to eat there or customers can call in for takeout.

On Monday, a pilot walked by, food and coffee in hand, and not knowing Mike was the titular Mike told him: “Tell Mike he’s doing a good job.”

Lewiston resident Jim Witherell’s fourth edition of his map and guide of Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor came out this summer. He recently filled a rush order for 76 of his maps of Baxter State Park that he was told are going into an L.L. Bean window display in Freeport. (Kathryn Skelton/Sun Journal)

MAP MAKER’S WINDOW WATCHING

Back in 1999, registered Maine Guide Jim Witherell of Lewiston developed his first map and guide of Acadia National Park and Bar Harbor, eventually selling thousands through Acadia’s visitor center.

On that success, he developed a map of Mt. Katahdin and Baxter State Park the next year.

“They were made on a kitchen table in my cellar,” Witherell said. “It’s literally cut and paste, we’re talking scissors and a glue stick and tweezers, the hard way every time.”

Witherell, who has also authored four books, including one on Leon Leonwood Bean, has cut and tweezed his way to several map updates since; the latest Acadia edition came out in June.

Both are for sale at L.L.Bean and his maps may be making more of a splash at the iconic Maine retailer: Witherell filed a distrbutor’s rush order in late July for 76 Baxter maps needed “as soon as possible because Bean is going to use them for a window display.”

He checked within the last two weeks — no display yet.

“I definitely want to keep going down and get a picture of it,” Witherell said.

Snowmaking guns are fired up at Sunday River Resort during a past winter. Officials at the Newry resort announced Thursday they are in phase one of a construction project to eventually double the water capacity for their snow guns. (Photo courtesy Sunday River Resort)

LET IT SNOW, LET IT SNOW …

Construction work underway at Sunday River Resort on Thursday as the ski resort adds nearly two miles of new high-pressure pipes to upgrade its snowmaking operation. (Photo courtesy Sunday River Resort)

Sunday River Resort announced Thursday that it’s installing nearly two miles of high-pressure pipe and a new 600-horsepower pump that will translate to a 15 percent increase in water capacity for snow-making this winter.

The pipe runs from Sunday River (the actual river) to the Barker Basin at the resort. The project is being described as the first phase to eventually doubling capacity.

“The difference this project will make to skiers and snowboarders visiting Sunday River will be subtle, mostly because we’ve always been able to produce quality snow very quickly thanks to our continued investment in snowmaking,” spokeswoman Karolyn Castaldo said. “However, this capacity will allow us to draw more water from the source to have on hand when the temperatures are ideal for making snow, so that will have a positive impact on the time it takes for us to make snow.”

She noted that the resort is typically open on or around Halloween. That’s a mere 75 days away.

Castaldo said Sunday River’s owner, Boyne Resorts, wasn’t releasing the project’s cost.

Newry Code Enforcement Officer David Bonney said it didn’t require a building permit — a project in Newry needs to have walls and a roof — but the resort’s work within the shoreland zoning area, a fraction of the project, was estimated at $170,000.

THIS JUST IN 

A few figures that weren’t available in time for stories in the past week:

• In Lewiston, Redstone Investments has taken out a building permit for the Bull Moose relocation and remodel at the Lewiston Mall. The store is growing three times as large and getting its own exterior entrance.

That work is estimated at $128,600, according to a permit application submitted Wednesday.

On the application, Redstone lists itself as the mall’s owner; city records still have the owner of 10 East Ave. as Jonlee Lewiston LLC, and the two companies share an address, according to Redstone’s website. A Redstone rep didn’t respond to a request for clarification.

•  In Auburn, last week’s Buzz talked about Becket Family of Services buying the former Auburn Baptist Church to turn it into a new special-purpose private school and the Auburn Baptist Church buying the former Rolandeau’s restaurant for its new space.

On a building permit the church estimated the project cost at $595,000 to renovate the restaurant for additional classrooms and do minor cosmetic renovations.

This week Rolandeau’s classic yellow awnings came down.

STILL HAVE ROOM ON YOUR CALENDAR?

The Sunday Indie Market at Dufresne Plaza in Lewiston is celebrating its first anniversary Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. with the 20-plus local artists its become known for, along with a food truck and live music.

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact staff writer Kathryn Skelton at 207-689-2844 or [email protected]

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