At the new hotspot in Norway are, from left, Jason Shiers, Mia Purcell, and Assistant Town Manager Deb Partridge. Submitted

NORWAY — Norway residents, shoppers in the downtown, and visitors have access to new free, public access WiFi internet service at Longley Square on Main Street in downtown Norway. This service is the result of a multi-organization partnership involving the Town of Norway, Norway Downtown and Lakeside Norway plus Community Concepts Finance Corporation, its contractor SCS Satellite Communications, and the Northern Forest Center.

Dennis Lajoie, Norway town manager, said access to free internet service will be appealing to visitors and residents and will help them stay connected.

Scott Berk, president of Norway Downtown, commented that free WiFi increases foot traffic in downtown areas and with the Electric Vehicle charging stations at Longley Square, its location in the heart of downtown, an information kiosk in the Square, plus benches, it’s a perfect place to offer free internet service.

Jason Shiers, director of Operations for Lakeside Norway, said Lakeside is very pleased to be sponsoring the hotspot and free internet service. “When you connect to the hotspot, be sure to click on the Lakeside URL to find out about all the great events happening at Lakeside.”

This service is made possible in part by a grant to Community Concepts Finance Corporation from the Northern Border Regional Commission and by additional support from the Northern Forest Center as part of the Maine West initiative. The grant provides free WiFi hotspot equipment, installation, and additional assistance, though the Northern Forest Center extends full maintenance and technical assistance for three years beyond the six-month equipment warranty.

Other hotspots are located in Harrison at the Harrison Food Bank, Crystal Lake Park, and the Harrison Town Office, and in Bethel at the Bethel Public Library and the gazebo on the Bethel Common. Through a partnership of the Town of Rumford, EnvisionRumford, Bangor Savings Bank, and Maine West a sixth hotspot is located in downtown Rumford.

Additional hotspots are available to communities and nonprofit organizations that are located in the Oxford Hills, River Valley, or greater Bethel area. If you are interested in expanding free public internet service in your community contact Mia Purcell at Community Concepts Finance Corporation: [email protected]

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