In this Nov. 2, 2021, file photo, a peeped is moored just offshore in an autumn scene lit by early morning sunlight in Portland. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Today is Wednesday. Temperatures will be in the mid-40s to mid-50s from north to south, with cloudy skies to north and sunshine to the south and a chance for rain throughout the state. Here’s what we’re talking about in Maine today.

The latest on the coronavirus in Maine

Eight more Mainers have died and another 938 COVID-19 cases have been reported across the state since the weekend, according to the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The statewide death toll stands at 1,215.

SAD 70, a school district in Aroostook County, has made masks mandatory for students participating in winter sports. That move comes after the district faced the likelihood that other schools wouldn’t schedule games with it in response to its previous mask optional policy.

A K-8 school in Ellsworth has temporarily closed due to a high number of COVID cases among students and staff. Meanwhile, a Richmond school district has shut down its school bus routes for the next week because of three COVID cases.

Parents are still planning small holiday celebrations even as their children get vaccinated

Maine children won’t be fully inoculated until well after Thanksgiving.

There’s more illegal activity in Maine’s medical marijuana market, state’s top pot official says

Maine has few tools to prevent medical marijuana from finding its way to the black market.

In just 2 years, the daughter of immigrants has become the top elected official overseeing Bangor’s schools

First elected in 2019, Marwa Hassanien’s rapid rise on the Bangor School Committee marks increasing diversity in the ranks of city leadership.

Bangor cleans up homeless encampment in anticipation of dangerous winter months

City employees picked up piles of trash around the encampment in a cleanup that is estimated to cost around $2,000.

Maine’s infrastructure bill windfall won’t plug chronic road and bridge funding gap

Maine still needs a long-term solution to transportation shortfalls far greater than what the bill can solve.

Roberto Rodriguez leads Portland’s at-large council race after recount

Lawyers for both candidates were still discussing 37 disputed ballots Tuesday night, leaving the race unresolved. 

In Maine’s largest city, staffing woes are limiting library hours

The cut hours at the Portland Public Library makes it inconvenient — or impossible — for some people to access the stacks and computers.

Study finds many cooking spices in stores are laden with heavy metals

Roughly a third of the tested spices had high enough levels of arsenic, lead and cadmium to pose a health concern for children when regularly consumed in typical serving sizes. Many were high enough to raise concern for adults as well.

Readers eagerly share their successful deer hunting photos

It appears as though it has been a successful early part of the deer hunting season for many Bangor Daily News readers.

Joe Fagnano to return as UMaine’s starting QB on Saturday

He suffered a high ankle sprain in a 55-7 loss to James Madison in the second game of the season.

In other Maine news …

New $18M art center opening in 2023 expected to attract more people to Waterville

Jared Golden defends his role in delaying the vote on a bigger spending package

Susan Collins joins push to send federal workers back to in-person service

Cape Elizabeth councilors balk at using tax dollars for affordable housing project

Orono wants more flexibility in deciding when to hold local elections

Standish man accused of killing his girlfriend pleads not guilty

NC man to serve 4 years for blinding Orono infant in 2019

New Zealander with field hockey in her blood plays big role in UMaine’s success

Missing Madawaska woman found safe in Bangor

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Leela Stockley

Leela Stockley is an alumna of the University of Maine. She was raised in northern Maine, and loves her cat Wesley, her puppy Percy and staying active in the Maine outdoors.