Dear Sun Spots: You have been a great help in the past. So here I am again asking for help.

My sister lost her husband some months ago and has a large home. It’s too much work for her so she would like to look for an apartment like the Roak Block, Great Falls Plaza and The Meadows.

Could you please find out what she has to do and is there any restrictions on any of them? She lives here in Lewiston and will sell her home. – No Name, No Town.

In addition to responses from readers, your sister can contact:

Roak Block Development, 156 Main St., Auburn, (207) 782-4259 to receive an application form. If stopping by, please do so Wed.-Fri. Your sister’s income, minus medical expenses, will need to be $16,350 for one person or $18,700 for two.

The Meadows, Route 202, Greene, (207) 946-3007. Call Jeff Clark or owner Rebecca “Becky” Laliberte to arrange for a tour. Clark is available 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tues-Sat. Please be aware there is a waiting list at present. Rooms are all private, with private bath, and cost $785 per month for a 12-by-14 room; $1,000 for a 15-by-16; and $1,250 for a 12-by-20 room. This size room would cost $1,525 per couple. You will be driven to one doctor’s appointment a week. Additional visits cost about $5. Weekly housekeeping and snowplowing is included in the fee.

Auburn Housing Authority’s Auburn Esplanade, 20 Great Falls Plaza, (207) 784-3448 and request an application. Sun Spots spoke with Rachel who says applicants are placed on a waiting list and Auburn residents are placed first. The out of town list is longer. You must be elderly, handicapped or disabled in order to qualify for Auburn Esplanade. Your sister must not earn more than $26,160 or for a couple it’s $29,900 per year.

Dear Sun Spots: I am looking for plans to build a soap box derby car. – Robert Duncan, Turner.

In addition to responses from readers, Sun Spots spoke with Marie Carmichael who is on the soap box derby committee in northern Maine and who provided the following sites that may help you find some plans. Sun Spots was unable to find a pattern online and believe you will have success online at (the All American Soap Box Derby site) which Carmichael says has a “ton” of information that may interest you, including information on getting started with soap box derby. Also is the Camden area soap box derby Web site. Contact person is Tracy Weed at (207) 785-3683.

Portland/Rumford contact is Les Bell at (207) 674-3604.

Bangor contact is Ken Hanscom at Bangor Parks & Recreation, (207) 947-1018.

Dear Sun Spots: I am wondering if there are any outlets that will purchase good quality, pocket novels. Most of what I have have not been used at all. I have about 46 of the larger size and 23 or so of the regular. I can be reached at (207) 783-3616. Thank you for your help. – T.E.L., Lewiston.

In addition to responses from readers T.E.L. may want to contact:

Melissa or Payson Sawyer at Pepperall Books in Lewiston, (207) 344-6900.

Artios Books, 180 Turner St., Auburn, (207) 786-4007. They are open six days a week. Just ask for Sue or Walter.

Dear Sun Spots: What is the name and phone number of the bakery in Gardiner that was featured on the Oprah show for their whoopie pies?

Also, I need to have my house painted in the spring and would like a list of reputable painters in the area. – No Name, Livermore Falls.

In addition to responses from readers, Isamax Snacks’ Whoopie Pies can be picked up at convenience stores. The bake shop at 5 Mechanic St. in Gardiner, (207) 582-0620 offers a five-pound whoopie pie to customers and sells between seven to 10 of them a week. You can also locate them online at They are also located at 201 Brunswick Road, Richmond, ME 04357, (207) 582-0125.

Regarding your second question: Contact John Ronan (207) 364-2077; Whittemore’s Painting (207) 778-3060; Bullen Painting, (207) 778-9211; Conroy Contracting (207) 452-2502; Michael Corcoran Painting (207) 647-3869; Jim’s Painting Service (207) 778-6702; Tim Mayberry Interior/Exterior Painting (207) 539-4817; Professional Painting Service at (207) 778-6932.

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be posted at in the Inform Us section under Press Release.

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