LCHA holds ‘Festa Italiana!’

Mon, 09/11/2023 - 7:30am

Supporters of Lincoln County Historical Association (LCHA) gathered Sunday evening for the organization’s annual Preservation Party, a fundraiser for LCHA’s educational programming and stewardship of the 1761 Pownalborough Court House in Dresden, where the event was held; the 1811 Old Lincoln County Jail in Wiscasset; and the 1754 Chapman-Hall House in Damariscotta.

A sold-out crowd of 128 attended, up from 95 last year. “Without this event we are not able to do what we do. It is our biggest fundraising event. It brings together people from the community and makes connections with local heritage,” said Shannon Gilmore, LCHA executive director. “It’s also a celebration for us. An opportunity to mark the work we’ve done in the past year.”

In the event’s well-known cake auctions, cakes are proudly marched through the audience. This year, volunteers donated nine, which went for around $300 each. Ann Light’s limoncello cheesecake sold for the highest sum: $425.

Auctioneer Kaja Veilleux of Thomaston Place Galleries entertained the crowd. An  auctioneer with 53 years of experience, Veilleux suggested “there are no friends at an auction,” as he helped drive prices higher for the cause.

Four vacation packages to Italy were an auction highlight. There two packages to the Amalfi coast, and two to a Tuscan village. Each package was auctioned between for $4,250- $5,250. One Amalfi coast auction winner said he was dreaming of going and now the dream would be coming true. Todd and Kathleen Farrin, winning bidders of one of the Tuscany trips, said it was exciting to be returning to Tuscany and they would be taking their adult daughters.

Other auctioned experiences included a wine and cheese tasting for six from Maine Tasting Center, a portrait session with photographer Bob Bond of 40 Federal Studio, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens family membership with gift cards from Ports of Italy and Moose Crossing Garden Center, car detailing plus six washes from E&S Auto and Golden Nozzle Car Wash, cooking lessons and dinner for six from Chris Toy, a repertory theater package combining Maine State Music Theater, Portland Stage, Good Theater, Heartwood Theater and Theater at Monmouth, Casco Bay fishing excursions from Seawalker Excursions, Monkey C Monkey Do passes with a Barnhouse Grill gift card, and an Italian picnic for two with fitted backpacks.

Gift certificates from Annabella’s Bakery Café, Bred in the Bone, Enterprise Farm, Contented Sole, In the Clover, It’s Your Day Florist, Rock, Paper, Scissors, The Old Goat Pub, Peapod Jewelry, Treats, and Richmond Farm & Home were raffled. The evening ended with a pledge round which raised over $10,000 after a $5,000 matching fund was offered by a participant. Food and drinks were provided by Midcoast Catering and Big Barn Coffee. Music was by Neil Lamb. A list of event sponsors can be found at