DEAR SUN SPOTS: The mission of the Maine Cycling Club is to promote and support safe biking for transportation and enjoyment in the Greater Lewiston-Auburn region.  As part of this effort, the MCC is willing to donate 10 bike parking docks for free to local nonprofits. Placing a bike dock in front of any business sends an important message to the community at large about transportation needs in our area and the values your business thinks are important.

Each dock can support two bikes and looks like an inverted U.  They are black, heavy-gauge steel and display stickers indicating that they were donated by the MCC and come with mounting hardware. The docks require being bolted into brick, asphalt, or concrete. Municipalities may help with this installation if the dock will be located on public property.

If you are involved with a nonprofit and would like to receive a parking dock, please send the following information to the club at [email protected]: name of nonprofit, services provided, location, why a dock would be helpful to your mission, and email contact information. We will make decisions allocating the docks at a board meeting and will contact awardees at that time.

— Joe, MCC membership director, no town

ANSWER: This is such a cool opportunity and much needed. What a wonderful addition to the community! All you nonprofits, take advantage of this offer.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: I know an elderly person in my neighborhood who needs help. She doesn’t drive any more but I see her walking to the store. She has let me give her a ride a couple times but mostly, she seems to want to be left alone. I went to visit her yesterday and she did indicate that she may need help “soon.” Her house felt chilly and I can see that housekeeping is beyond her.

I’m new to the area and don’t really know where to start, but I find myself worrying about her a lot. She told me she has no family around here and I don’t know whether to involve other neighbors. I know you’ll be able to tell me what I should do.

— No name, no town

ANSWER: You don’t say what town you live in, but if the situation is dire, I’d call the town office and make them aware. If your friend needs fuel assistance, etc., they can help.

Also call 211 or go online to The organization supports older adults by providing referrals to, and information about, needed services and supports.

You can even text or email them and do an online search for a variety of services and programs, including community meals, respite care, home health care, transportation, and homemaker services.

211 can also help with paying for heat, food, or other nonemergency services, and will connect your neighbor to all kinds of resources. After you’ve assured yourself that your friend’s basic needs are taken care of, perhaps you can call together a few neighbors to help you watch out for her, take turns visiting, making meals, etc. Maybe this elderly neighbor is the catalyst for galvanizing the neighborhood and helping you make some friends in your new place. Thank you for caring.

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. Please include your phone number. 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 emailed to [email protected].


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