Dear Readers:

Last month, I shared with you exciting news about a fresh section coming to the Bangor Daily News. Today, April 20, it’s finally here. Please join me in welcoming Homestead to the BDN family.

Homestead is about people leading more meaningful lives by being connected to nature and to the land, living more independently and deliberately. We’ll show you, our readers, ways to live these lives, from foods to prepare to energy sources, from transportation to medical care, schooling options, unusual ways to make a living and interesting DIY projects. We’ll also share the stories of Mainers and the places they call their homestead.

This week’s Homestead features the first installment of a new series we are launching that will take you inside barns that have been given new lives. Barns are a visible symbol of the Maine homestead, and their re-use and re-imagining is a testament to how the values of living connected to the land remain even as our world is changing. This week’s barn (actually, two barns) is located in Brownsville and has been converted into a thriving music and events venue. We’ve also taken a close look at companion planting and how you can use it to create a thriving garden — and perhaps even naturally deter pests. Natalie Feulner’s column this week spills the sap about her misadventure trying to make homemade maple syrup.

As you know, Homestead replaces the Family section. The Homestead team — that’s staff writers Natalie Feulner and Kathleen Pierce, visual journalist Gabor Degre and myself — have been hard at work creating and planning something we think will excite and inspire you.

If you have thoughts, comments, questions or story ideas, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at

Best wishes for living a good life,

Sarah Walker Caron

Senior Editor, Features

Sarah Walker Caron

Sarah Walker Caron is the senior editor, features, for the Bangor Daily News and the editor of Bangor Metro magazine. She’s the author of “Classic Diners of Maine,” and five cookbooks including “Easy...