ANSWER: Thank you for this good advice, Deb. It’s true, animals that are searching for food are attracted to the scents of garbage, and it is possible for their heads to become caught in small food containers, which in turn, can cause the animal to suffer from confusion, dehydration and starvation — which eventually can lead to a slow, painful death. You can follow the above tips to help limit such instances. If, however, you notice an animal wandering around and struggling with something caught on its head, then contact your regional Inland Fisheries and Wildlife office. The one nearest to the Lewiston-Auburn area is located in Gray at 358 Shaker Road. You can call them at (207) 657-2345, or visit the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife website at

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Do you or any of your readers know of an outdoor area where 50 to 60 people can gather for an outing in the summer within 50 miles of the Lewiston-Auburn area? — Sandy, No Town.

ANSWER: Depending on what exactly you’re looking for, and what you’re willing to pay, you have so many options, that Sun Spots will never be able to list them all, but here’s a (very small) sampling of some of your many options:

Most state parks have the capacity to host such a gathering, but there may be fees associated with renting specific spaces and there also may be fees for day use of the park, plus facilities charge for the person or car load. Some local state parks you can investigate are Range Pond in Poland, which has a sheltered group picnic area for rent; Bradbury Mountain State Park in Pownal has extensive picnic facilities and trails to explore; and Sebago Lake State Park in Casco.

You might also check out Pineland Farm in New Gloucester; Lake Pennesseewassee Park in Norway; and even Fort Williams Park in Cape Elizabeth is still within the distance range you mentioned at just over 40 miles from Lewiston.

One of the beautiful things about Lewiston-Auburn’s central location is that you’re within a short drive to ocean beaches (like Popham Beach or Reid State Park), lakes (like Sebago, Rangeley and a plethora of others), mountains (like in the Bethel region and the White Mountains), forests and farms. When you add in paid venues that are specifically designed to host event gatherings, the list is extensive. Sun Spots recommends contacting your local Chambers of Commerce websites or visiting

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