Franklin Countys First News

Blueberry Festival organizer recognized for dedication to community

UWTVA Director Lisa Laflin (left) presents the Gary A. Lagrange Community Impact Award to Shannon Smith (right).

KINGFIELD - The Herbert Grand Hotel buzzed Thursday night as community members and business representatives gathered for the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area annual meeting. The evening celebrated the support of individuals and businesses who helped with another impactful year for the UWTVA, specifically highlighting several people who went above and beyond.

Chair of the board Peter Smith told the crowd that the non-profit logged $250,000 worth of volunteer hours within the 2018 year.

"We are very rich with people who want to give back," he said.

One such person, who UWTVA Director Lisa Laflin said has left her stamp on the community, is Wilton resident and Blueberry Fest organizer, Shannon Smith.

"She consistently shows great leadership but excels at getting others involved. Western Maine would be a very different place without Shannon Smith," the program read.

Smith was presented with the Gary A. LaGrange Community Impact Award and applauded the help from others that make her job easier.

"I love knowing that I can pick up that phone and hear a yes," she said.

The evening included a number of awards, all sticking with the "Spring into Action" theme, such as the "Master Gardener" award for businesses going above and beyond in their support of UWTVA (Barclays, Hannaford, Franklin Community Health Network, LEAP, Robin's Flower Pot, United Insurance and Verso).

Winners of the Community Change Challenge were also recognized with trophies for their efforts, Verso Paper, in Tier I raised more than $3,000 and Spruce Mountain Elementary School in Tier II raised more than $1,500. The 21 businesses that participated raised more than $6,800 in change. 
The winning organization in each tier have the option to designate 25 percent of the raised funds to a United Way Partner of their choice.

Tier I:
Verso $3,025.78
Franklin Community Health Network - $ 225.51
Sugarloaf - $106.48
Hannaford Jay - $74.34
Hannaford Farmington - $56.67
University of Maine at Farmington / Alpha Phi Omega - $36.61

Tier II:
Spruce Mountain Elementary - $1,517.30
The Dugout Bar & Grill - $643.87
Stewart Ave Patriots Fan Club - $311.10
Main-Land - $167.83
United Way - $136.42
Determined Nutrition - $107.01
Daggett’s Garage - $103.25
Western Maine Behavioral Health - $88.45
Platinum Tanning / Hair By Mindy - $63.59
Sandy River Farm Supply - $55.23
Broadway Barber Shop - $51.18
Sizzle Tanning - $36.76
Mt Blue Middle School - $11.58
Verizon - $2.46

United Way of the Tri-Valley Area’s mission is to unite people and resources to improve lives and build a strong and healthy community. Every dollar and hour is appreciated, so please consider helping United Way help others by making a tax deductible charitable contribution. For more information about United Way of the Tri-Valley Area, visit or call 778-5048. Follow United Way on Facebook to be kept up to speed on programs and initiatives that are up-coming (

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3 Responses »

  1. Congratulations Shannon, well deserved and I am very pleased that your dedication to the community has been recognized!

  2. ...Congratulations Shannon Smith ...You are a real Winner !

  3. Well deserved Shannon, thank you for all you do for our overall community!