The Rangeley Lakes Historical Society 5th Annual Rangeley Regatta has become a really great way to start the school year for many of the children in the local community. Middle school children in grades six through eight,  from Rangeley, Stratton, Kingfield, Phillips, Farmington and Strong came together to compete in a variety events. There was a poetry competition, a public speaking competition, outdoor events such as fly casting, fly tying, a one-mile foot race and my favorite, the team event where kids competed on their knowledge of outdoor trivia with questions such as “Who was the inventor of the earmuff?”

Afterwards the many dozens  of school children walked from the Outdoor Heritage Museum to Oquossoc Cove to compete in the water events. With the assistance preparatory high school students from around Maine such as Kents Hill, Gould Academy and Hebron Academy, kids participated in relay races, competing with canoes, kayaks and Rangeley row boats. Many of the children I spoke to said this was their very first time in that particular kind of boat.

Many area locals also lent a hand in judging and coordinating the events including border batrol agents and both the President of the Rangeley Region Guides & Sportsmen’s Association Gary Langille and Vice President Kevin Sinnett.

It took a lot of coordination and timing to do such an ambitious event. Bill Pierce, the founder of the event and director of the Outdoor Sporting Heritage Museum says that prior to the event he doesn’t really sleep for days. There are so many little details and last minute changes to be considered and Mother Nature doesn’t always comply. However, this year, the clouds parted and it was as beautiful a day as ever. The perfect way to start the school year and get some last licks outdoors. Thank you to the many area volunteers! Please consider joining next year!

For some inspiration, check out the following poems from the middle school poetry competition!


Moose by Lydia Duquette


Standing tall with pride, like thinking nothing else is above you.

It’s antlers hidden in pine needles and snow covered with velvet like fur

A butterfly is placed upon its nose, questioning,

“What is your name?” It asks with a flap of its wings,


The moose spoke with its soft voice, “I do not have one, but I am known as moose.”

It’s shaggy, tawny fur waved in the cool, gentle winds of the pine forest.

“What do you do here?” It asks, now fluttering around.

“I stay here and sleep in the snow and wander through the streams and lakes,” Snow poured off of its back like a stiff waterfall.


It shuffled its hooves, the white blanket crunching and melting under the touch,

“What made you like this?”

“That is such a silly question, everyone’s admiration of my height, my fur, and my antlers of course. I have come to love myself and my appearance.”


It swooned,

The moose’s gentle, dark eyes almost reflected the scenery perfectly, due to the black contrasting the white of the snow.

Flakes fell from the soft grey clouds like slow, falling stars and landed upon its back once more, replacing the snow that was previously there.


The smell now mixed with subtle peppermint and pine, with the fresh snow and wind, hinted with the salty scent of the streams, lakes and rivers

The butterfly had nothing else to say and drifted away.



Change by Eva Spear


Do you hear trees falling in the woods,

Or the morning dew coming upon the land.

Quiet in the morning until the day gets older

Either laughing or weeping

Hanging with family or friends.

As the nights get chilly

We doze off into slumber

The seasons are changing

Slowly but quickly,

make sure you make it last.



Rangeley Middle School



Ode to Maine by Ryleigh Frost


Crisp days with Nature’s breath, blowing

tickling my skin,

New England rocks layered in the sweating sand

Sharp and fierce tips of glamourous stone


Piercing from Water’s heart, high and mighty

Anchored in this graceful land that I do belong, my happiness is evident.

Pine, Maple, and Spruce, work together for our delight

They are the lean, towering, true hardworking Mainers,


Giving the gift of raw, pure air,

Maple gives the treat of sap, glue-like saccharine

Formed into glossy, refined syrup substances

While Pine outnumbers all the rest.


The waxy coat of the  Moose sauntering among the woods,

And beside the roaring rivers, swift and angry, flooding over boulders,

The woods, the streams, and the moose are braided together here,

Making Nature’s sweet tune.


Our plump, velvet mountains guard over many herds,

Frosty and stubborn, threaded deep into the ground

Built high and mighty, They symbolize

The glorious land that I am proud to call home.




The Moose Poem by Harrison Thomas

The crispy grass crushed

The cold brown leaves crunch

The ground patterned

The moose strolling about

The frigid water ripples

The icey fish disturbed

The water going into cycle

The moose drinking water

The tips that dull

The the bones that loosen

The antlers that fall off

The moose that is weakened

The wolves that hunt

The sent that trails

The howls that echo

The moose that is hunted

The bugs that swarm

The bones that fade

The fur that falls off

The moose that decays



Let Fly by Jacob Guay

My fly rod in motion wove through the breeze.

That long bamboo stick had a minor load,

Twisting and looping through the air with ease.

The line lands and rests a brief while – a fish was soon to explode!

After that rupture, all things would calm down.

My fly, though lost, rescued my night.

Imagine then the joyous cries when I showed up in town.

It’s shocking that I could have wrestled his might!

The prize had been lofty, all had to agree.

My family just stood there, each mouth forming a hole.

I gave half to my partner, let him eat it for free,

For I knew that my family could not devour the whole.

A downcast job is a wretched thing to do,

When set beside casting out from a canoe.



Happy winner reveling in some well deserved ice cream. Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Rangeley Region Guide’s & Sportsman’s Association president Gary Langille lending a hand.

Border patrol on hand for assistance. Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Bill Pierce offering some last minute advice to the competitors. Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Lots of school spirit and cheering throughout the afternoon. Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Outdoor trivia winning team from Rangeley middle school.

Public speaking competiton Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Art competition showed real talent. Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

Stephanie Chu-O’Neil

For a bunch more photos check out our Facebook page!

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