After a morning of pulling lobster traps under mostly blue skies and calm waters, Stonington resident Kurt Ciomei unloads a day's catch from his boat, Miss Mell, at the Stonington Co-op on Thursday, Aug. 16. Credit: Terry Farren

Good morning. Temperatures will be in the mid 80s throughout the state, with plenty of sunshine.

Here’s what you need to know today.

A Maine woman lost her wallet but found out that there are still good people in the world

Credit: Bill Carpenter

–Donna Gold of Stockton Springs accidentally sent a pouch containing her driver’s license and credit cards on a strange journey — and it ended up renewing her faith in humanity. The experience gave her “the sense of a web of connection across the nation, a confirmation of my trust in humanity.”

Bangor Fire Department gets grant to beef up its ranks as it loses firefighters to retirement

–The Bangor Fire Department will receive more than a half-million dollars to hire four new firefighters, allowing the department to expand its roster in the wake of an abnormally large number of retirements.

The $515,000 federal grant will allow Bangor to increase its firefighting roster from 84 to 88, and adds back positions that were previously slashed from the city budgets, Chief Thomas Higgins said.

Step into the ‘gecko room,’ where this Maine man keeps hundreds of lizards

Credit: Aislinn Sarnacki

–University of Maine Professor Ian Bricknell has more than 100 geckos, and said they make great pets — if you have done your research.

Some of the prettiest geckos are the most ornery, while others are fast and hard to corral. The largest kind of gecko in the world is also one of the friendliest.

“People say geckos are boring. But with 1,500 species, they’re a really interesting group of pets. I mean, if you want something that’s unusual and fascinating, then I find these guys are amazing.”

Hancock County is losing its ambulance service, but Bangor is taking over

–County Ambulance of Ellsworth is going out of business after serving the area for 40 years, and Capital Ambulance of Bangor will step in as the Ellsworth area’s interim emergency service provider.

In July, County resolved allegations that it submitted false claims to Medicare and MaineCare by agreeing to pay $16,776.74, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Capital Ambulance of Bangor will start handling calls in Ellsworth and 16 nearby towns at 5 p.m. Aug. 31.

A Maine sports ‘icon’ known for his rugged handshake has died

–Mike Haley’s life in football spanned generations, from his playing days in South Paris and at the University of Maine to coaching and athletic director/assistant principal stints at numerous schools as well as his work for several statewide organizations.

And he was also known for having a rugged handshake.

“Mike is single-handedly responsible for teaching thousands of men in this state how to properly shake hands,” said John Bapst of Bangor head football coach and athletic administrator Dan O’Connell.

The lawsuits keep piling up in the case of an alleged $50 million fraud scheme

–The lawyers representing embattled developer Michael Liberty are being sued for putting together what two plaintiffs are calling “false and misleading” legal documents related to a questionable startup that federal regulators said bilked investors of millions.

A partner with the law firm at the center of the controversy told the BDN the new suit is “completely without legal merit.”

Do this: Your Maine weekend guide

Credit: Ashley L. Conti

–It’s all about the American Folk Festival in Bangor this weekend, which kicks off at 6 p.m. tonight with the Tuba Skinny Parade. Meanwhile, down in Portland, emo legend Dashboard Confessional will play at the Maine State Pier tonight while Too Late the Hero will play at Aura.

In other news…


State police refute highway shooting report

Customs and Border Protection plane crashes in woods near Pittsfield airport

Scientists say avian flu, distemper likely to blame for Gulf of Maine seal deaths


American Folk Festival hopes to evolve along with blossoming Bangor waterfront

Bangor drug treatment doctor calls for treating addiction as brain disease

Sports director leaving Bangor’s Channel 7-Fox 22


Jackson Lab offers first peek inside its new mice breeding facility

Call center at former Navy base to hire 178 seasonal workers

Feds cut back herring fishing amid concerns about population


Maine’s top court backs ruling that LePage must send Medicaid expansion plan to feds

LePage offers details on how he wants to fix Maine’s child welfare system

LePage, Portland mayor trade barbs over noncitizen voting


The folk festival needs you to go enjoy the music — and contribute to its future

Is it the will of the people to penalize marriage?

Katahdin Woods and Waters gives me hope for the future of this region


New UMaine athletic director wants to get ‘to know the people’ 

Price pitches Red Sox to 7-0 shutout against Cleveland Indians

McCullough tops modified enduro field at Speedway 95

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Lindsay Putnam

Lindsay Putnam is a senior editor for sports and features at the Bangor Daily News. Lindsay previously worked as an editor and reporter at the New York Post. She's a York Beach native and Colby College...