A sign on the door of Chopsticks says the longtime Chinese food restaurant on Park Street in Lewiston has closed. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

This week, the Buzz is starting with the bitter, ending with the sweet and serving up Starbucks in the middle.

First up: Chopsticks Restaurant on Park Street in Lewiston is no more.

The Chinese restaurant’s phone was disconnected Monday and a simple handwritten sign hung on the front door, “Closed for business.”

The eatery opened in 1990, according to its Facebook page profile, where it also claimed to have been voted “‘Best of the Best’ Chinese Food in Lewiston/Auburn since 1995.”

My favorite Chopsticks’ fun fact: Order chicken fingers and waitstaff would write “007” on the order slip because James Bond liked chicken fingers. Who knew?

R.I.P. Chopsticks.

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Three more letters: MTI

Maine Technology Institute highlighted its fiscal year 2020 investments in its latest newsletter, which totaled $9.6 million to 140 different projects across Maine, up slightly from the year before.

The businesses and entrepreneurs receiving grants in our area, according to President Brian Whitney, who also offered a bit about the projects in the recipients’ own words:

• United Fabricants Strainrite Corporation, Auburn, $100,000, Mesh Tubing Automation: “We want to sew tubes of nylon monofilament tubes from flat stock material. To switch from cut and sew to tubing would be a huge advancement in material handling — this would allow us to compete with Asia because of reduced unit cost. This new cost structure would open up large U.S. and European markets for our products. Currently, no one in the world offers the technology, but we are looking to partner with a German company to research and develop the capabilities.”

• SwitchDown LLC, Durham, $897.50, Finalize Synchronized Switch Patent: “Multiway light switches, which are needed whenever a light is controlled from more than one switch, come with a troublesome user interface problem: they are not always in the up position when the light is on and vice versa. SwitchDown has designed and prototyped a synchronized light switch which automatically moves so that the switch position corresponds with the state of the light. SwitchDown’s patent has been analyzed by the patent office, with eight claims accepted, five claims disputed and three claims rejected. This TechStart grant help(s) with costs associated with responding to the patent office and finalizing the patent.”

• Shelter +7, Inc., Lewiston, $6,500, securing the certified structural performance data required to expand sales into the national marketplace: “The ‘Ultra-High Performance Building Shell System’ . . . delivers exceptionally versatile, rugged, rapid construction, low energy and maintenance, high quality, green and affordable structures for the residential, commercial and professional real estate sectors.”

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• LiteracyTech, Inc., Lewiston, $25,000, ReMo: Literacy App: “We are creating a web-based application for use in literacy education that will be used by parents, students and teachers. The application provides qualitative and quantitative data about student reading habits, mindsets, experiences, comprehension and strategy use. We need funding for branding/marketing and programming to complete the application.”

• Bigelow Mountain Partners, LLC, Carrabassett Valley, $50,000, Reduce Manufacturing Cost through tool innovation: “Trueflow Geometry allows snowboarders to initiate turns significantly easier and wood sidewalls generates a stiffer, lighter, more responsive board with less plastic waste.”

Now let’s wash that science down with an Americano

Auburn is getting a second Starbucks.

A Shaw’s spokeswoman confirmed Monday that Starbucks is part of the Center Street grocery store’s current $850,000 remodel and will open at the front of the store at the end of the month.

There’s no word on what, if any, impact the opening will have on the stand-alone Starbucks nearby at 35 Mt. Auburn Ave.

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A corporate spokesperson said they had no information.

Also expanding . . .

Mary Callahan and Corey DuFour at the renovated Kimball Street Studios on Lisbon Street in Lewiston. Submitted photo

Kimball Street Studios at 191 Lisbon St. has added an art supplies to the custom framing shop.

Mary Callahan said she’d wanted to offer drawing supplies, pads, pencils and acrylics ever since opening the studio with two partners more than eight years ago. The new addition of co-owner Corey DuFour “brought about a new energy” and the time felt right.

The studio hosts a monthly event called Sketchy Friends — artists drawing other artists — asked what people would like to find, and went from there.

DuFour said he used reclaimed materials from Mary’s brother, Kevin Callahan’s, carriage house and updated an area of the shop that had been used for seating.

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“It seemed like a natural direction for us to go in regards to being a frame shop offering ready-made frames, mats, things of that nature, and then taking the next step and adding art supplies,” he said.

The studio is open by appointment only from Tuesday to Friday.

Lastly, let’s dish

The website Seriously Smoked, dedicated to all things meat, studied Twitter tweets and hashtags in July, National Ice Cream Month, to determine the favorite ice cream flavor by state.

For Maine? Cookies and cream, which was tops in 10 states.

In New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont? A sea of chocolate ice cream fans.

The Buzz was updated at 9:29 a.m.

Quick hits about business comings, goings and happenings. Have a Buzzable tip? Contact staff writer Kathryn Skelton at 689-2844 or [email protected]


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