Dear Sun Spots: When I moved to the Lewiston-Auburn community in 1962 there was what appeared to be a derelict, abandoned blue Sunoco at the junction of Sabattus Street and East Avenue in downtown Lewiston. In the 47 years since there has been no change at this prime commercial location. The building remains and no enterprise has been established there. Is there a story of interest connected to the unusual set of circumstances? – Loren, Sabattus.

Answer: Sun Spots checked with Gil Arsenault, director of planning and code enforcement for the City of Lewiston, who asked building inspector Gary Campbell for more information. There doesn’t seem to be anything unusual about the property.

Based on Campbell’s recollection and assessor records, the property, 445 Sabattus St., was an operating service station until the early 1980s. A permit to remove the underground tanks was issued in 1984, and there was an auto repair garage there until the late 1980s.

It has been vacant since that time, but has not been a security problem. Code Enforcement Officer Tom Maynard issued an order to comply in 2006 regrading trash and the appearance of the building.

By retaining the building, the owner, Alonzo Garcelon, has been trying to maintain the status of 445 Sabattus as a separate lot from the NAPA building lot at 449 Sabattus St.; however, he has stated to Campbell that he would like to find a lessee to take the whole corner and demolish the former garage building for him. Campbell continues to work with Garcelon with respect to the disposition of this property.

Dear Sun Spots: In response to Bea, from Livermore Falls, about the Improved Low’s Champion bean seed, I have some!


I’ve raised them and saved my seed for many years. They are a large white bean, very sweet when cooked, not like the red Low’s Champion. She can call me, and I’ll share some with her. My number is 933-4596. – No Name, No Town.

Dear Sun Spots: Things can get confusing with names of bean varieties. Improved Low’s Champion is very different from Low’s Champion, the variety offered by Vermont Bean Seed Co.

“Improved” is white with a red spot that can turn very dark when dry. “Low’s” is a smallish entirely red bean.

I have “Improved.” The seed came to me from a Mr. Merrill, I believe, from Livermore. He asked me to raise it for him because of its superior baking quality. It is in fact one of the best baking beans.

“Improved” may have been popular locally; I have seen seed of it from a family here in Buckfield as well as that from Livermore. Last year was a very bad bean growing year, and my seed stock is dangerously low. I could give your correspondent a dozen seeds to get a start with, or I can be asked for seed next year. Call 336-2885. – John Meader, Buckfield.

Answer: Sun Spots thanks you for your response, as we were unaware that there was a difference in the two types of beans.

Dear Sun Spots: As always, you do an awesome service to all of us and I appreciate your column very much.

Would like to remind all of you out there that I am still collecting goods for Mother Teresa’s Mission in Haiti.

Please call 364-3816 if you have items that are too good to discard, but you don’t know what to do with them. God bless you all. – O. Poirier, No Town.

Dear Sun Spots: Would one of your readers happen to have lost a small white bag containing a few greeting cards and a fair amount of cash (most important) in Shaw’s parking lot on either Saturday, Feb. 21, or Sunday, Feb. 22, late afternoon to suppertime?

If so, I hope you checked in at the service desk to reclaim it because I found it and brought it in.

With the economy the way it is, I would have appreciated such a kindness and not a “finder’s keepers” attitude or simply left to Shaw’s to do whatever with it. Thanks. – No Name, No Town.

Answer:
I’m sure we speak for the owner of the cards and money when we say thank you for your honesty.

Dear Sun Spots: I have written before about this time each year to tell all of you that it is important to watch out for the humidity level in your house.

Lots of times we experience cold- or flu-like symptoms. How many people run to the doctor for the flu when it’s just humidity in the home?

If you feel cold just about all the time, putting more humidity in the house will warm you up fine. Most people will raise the thermostat and still feel cold. That’s due to low humidity; that wastes fuel.

So here is a great tip to save you all kinds of problems: watch the humidity in your house. How can you up the humidity? Put a five-quart or greater pan on the stove with water. Make it boil and it will fill your house with humidity. It will make you recover from sickness caused by your body going dry. Watch the container so it doesn’t go empty. It will feel comfortable without turning up the thermostats. Keep stress down, humidity up! – John Bean, Lewiston.


Dear Sun Spots: I’m looking for a T-shirt with a John Deere tractor on it with the saying on the back “Will swap wife for tractor.” Could someone tell me where I could purchase one? – C. Harris, Poland.

Answer:
In addition to responses from readers, check out the selection at the Tractor Supply Store, 1272 Main St., Oxford. At this time, they don’t have that exact shirt, but they are still getting shipments so it’s possible it may come in.

The associate we spoke with thought you might be interested in the shirt they have that says “Wife and tractor missing. Reward for tractor.” Visit the store from 8 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday through Saturday or 9 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sunday.

You can also contact Run Greene at 888-453-8697. They sell a huge variety of John Deere products, from boots to party supplies, with the John Deere logo. They have this particular shirt available for $12.99. It’s a gray shirt with the phrase “Will trade wife for tractor” on the front of the shirt and the John Deere logo underneath. It comes in sizes medium through 2XL. When you call, ask for item number S3S808HD.

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 www.sunjournal.com in the Advice section under Opinion on the left-hand corner of your computer screen. In addition, you can e-mail your inquiries to [email protected]


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