From left, Ellen Wainwright, communications manager for Sunday River; Jean Benedict with the River Fund Maine; Lizz Peacock and Anna Bannon with Maine Adaptive; David Murphy with MSAD 44 and Community Concepts; and Cecil Bryant, lift mechanic at Sunday River.

NEWRY — The Barker Express Chair Auction, hosted by Sunday River last month, provided participants a unique opportunity to bid on chairs from the historic Barker Express chairlift. The auction raised $112,767 from the collective generosity of residents and loyal
guests from across the country.

All proceeds from the auction will be donated to three local organizations: Maine Adaptive, The River Fund Maine, and the MSAD 44 Daycare Initiative. Each organization provides valuable services to the local area, and supporting their missions is essential to fostering a stronger community.

“We appreciate this donation towards the re-establishment of a childcare center in the Bethel area. It’s a critical need to the families in our school district area, and Sunday River continues to be a fantastic supporter of those efforts,” said David Murphy, representing MSAD 44 and Community Concepts.

As Sunday River celebrates this remarkable milestone, heartfelt gratitude is extended to the lift mechanics and operators who diligently serviced the Barker Express for so many years. Sunday River began in the Barker Basin, and this historic lift has been a steadfast companion to the skiing community for decades. Its final act of service, through this auction, underscores the values that
define the Sunday River community.

“We are deeply humbled by the incredible response to the Barker Express Chair Auction and the remarkable generosity displayed by our dedicated skiers and community members,” said Resort President Dana Bullen. “The funds raised will support these organizations to continue their invaluable work within our community—a community that we are proud to be a part of.”

For more information about Sunday River’s community partnerships, please visit

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