BETHEL – Gov. John Baldacci was in the Bethel area for several events on Thursday.

Bethel’s Best Pizza, a Dirigo Choice small business, was the first stop of the afternoon with Baldacci offering remarks on the success of the Dirigo Health Plan, a nationally-recognized model of containing healthcare costs and extending health insurance coverage to individuals and small businesses in Maine.

Scott and Robin Mills of Bethel, owners of Bethel’s Best, welcomed the governor and state Sen. Bruce Bryant.

Others attending included chamber members, town officials and individuals interested in signing up for Dirigo Choice.

The Aug. 17 Chamber Community Breakfast in Bethel will feature a presentation on Dirigo by the Governor’s Office of Health Policy and local insurance representatives.

The Oxford County Democrats raised more than $500 for the Jackson-Silver Post 68’s roof replacement fund at the chicken pie supper attended by Baldacci, Assistant Majority Leader Robert Duplessie, Democratic Party Chairman Pat Colwell, Bryant, Rep. John Patrick, Register of Deeds Jane Rich and friends from around the county.

The governor’s remarks focused on the accomplishments of the past three years. He spoke of the challenges facing Maine, including the possible impact of BRAC closings and the changing economy and of his commitment to growing Maine’s economy.

An afternoon fund-raiser for the Oxford County Democratic Committee was held at the home of Henry and Patricia Stewart on Indian Pond in Greenwood with Baldacci offering remarks highlighting environmental initiatives, including the work of the Mahoosuc Land Trust and the Creative Economy.

Oxford County Democratic Chairwoman Cathy Newell held a brief county committee meeting following the dinner. Plans were announced for upcoming parades and fairs, for the supper on Sept. 30 in Norway to benefit domestic violence causes, and for the upcoming Democratic Family Festival and Muskie Lobster Bake on Sunday, Aug. 7, at Thomas Point Beach with Gen. Wesley Clark as speaker.

For information on the Oxford County Democrats, visit the Web site, or, or call Cathy Newell at 875-2116.

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