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FORT KENT, Maine — The Fort Kent Lions Club, famous in northern Maine for its creative biannual Pride of Lions fundraiser, has demonstrated its creativity once again through a unique video making the rounds on Facebook.
The video shows Lions Club members ranging in age from 20 to 93 years old passing — and in one case golfing — a potato to one another in video clips filmed at their homes and places of business.
From members in Greater Fort Kent to those wintering in Florida, 90 people participated in the video, a testament to the cohesiveness and dedication of the community service organization.
Posted shortly after 9 p.m. Tuesday, the video was viewed 2,000 times in just over two hours.
Most of the video clips were filmed by the individual Lions Club members.
“For those who couldn’t work out recording, a few of us went to those members, and without contact and through social distancing, the videos were done from their driveways and porches,” Lions Club President Kris Malmborg said.
The project began two months ago, when club treasurer Roy Bernard ran the idea by the board.
Lion Charles “Chaz” Pelletier edited the video clips together.
“After months of no meetings, we want to show the world that the Fort Kent Lions are still getting together and helping our community, while maintaining distance, miles of distance,” Malmborg said.
Through their Pride of Lions Show and other fundraising efforts, the club supports the community in a variety of ways, including providing a scholarship fund, maintaining the Lion’s Pavilion at Riverside Park and sponsoring the local Boy Scouts troop, as well as the Scouts’ annual chicken barbecue. Members also decorate town light poles and the town Christmas tree every year.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, the Lions recently donated 200 bottles of hand sanitizer to local police, school lunch delivery personnel, town employees and business owners.
They also, in conjunction with local potato farmers, twice distributed potatoes and monetary donations to area food pantries and restaurants.
Malmborg said he could not be more proud of the video.
“It was heartbreaking not being able to meet with our members for such an extended period, but this helped bring everyone together in an unconventional way,” he said. “We hope everyone enjoys watching the video as much as we enjoyed putting it together. And where there’s a need, there’s a Lion, so keep an eye out for our next big project.”