Franklin Countys First News

Updates from Farmington Rotary

Vice President Terri Winslow thanks Rhonda Irish, Town Manager of Wilton, for her presentation at Farmington Rotary.

FARMINGTON - In the last two weeks, Rotarians have heard presentations from Amanda Hall and Rhonda Irish.

Amanda is a PhD candidate at St. Andrews University in Scotland, and the daughter of Farmington Rotarian Lisa Ellrich. She discussed in detail what she is studying - the continuing conflicts in Northern Ireland and the shift in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to a culture war. Amanda showed slides that included a mural painted with a common theme in this Celtic region: Prepared for Peace, Ready for War.

Once completing her dissertation on this ever-changing topic, Amanda will reside in London with her husband-to-be, who is also studying for his PhD.

Rhonda is the Town Manager of the town of Wilton. With great pride in her work, Rhonda focused on sharing recent accomplishments including: the evaluation of downtown infrastructure; planning grants that had been received, including one for $400,000 that allowed for new street lights to be installed, sidewalks to be built; the downtown monument to be maintained and beautified; and plans for the future to be made. While Wilton has seen its challenges with the closing of Key Bank and Barclays, the downtown improvements have brought new businesses to the area, including Family Freeze, Salt and Pepper, Western Maine Play Museum, Life's Perks, and Ambition Brewing to the area.

Rhonda noted that while bringing businesses to the community is critical, Wilton has also put a lot of energy into being a family-friendly town. This is illustrated by the commitment to the library, Kineowatha Park, a new disc golf area, canoe kayak rentals at Kineowatha made possible by the Healthy Community Coalition; park upgrades, and a music series.

Infrastructure improvements continue as the wall at the foot of Wilson Lake is the next area to receive attention, along with additional landscape in the area at the head of the lake frequented by visitors and residents alike.

Rhonda was pleased to announce that the 13 million dollar renovation of the waste water treatment plant was just completed, which was ten years in the making.

She concluded her summary of accomplishments by talking about the EPA grants received that have allowed for clean up of the Forster Mill and the Tannery.

Farmington Rotary meets on Thursday mornings at 7 a.m. at UMF's Olsen Student Center.

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