Fri, 06/07/2019 - 2:15pm

About this blog:

  • Frank Barnako is a seasonal resident of Wiscasset at Clarks Point on the Sheepscot River.   His career in journalism included on air and news director positions with CBS and NBC Radio and TV stations.  He was a pioneer in the Internet, helping to create and co-found where he also developed a 200-station radio network and wrote daily columns focused on the stock market, business news, and technology. Barnako describes himself as “an aspiring photographer,” whose work can be seen at<>. He is a member of the town’s Investment Advisory Committee. Email him at

Two weeks after Labor Day, good weather. And that got us out and about to see the village beginning to blossom as a late Spring season arrives.

While the Route 1 project gets a lot of notice, don’t ignore activity on the recreation dock and along the shore, an undiscovered and undeveloped gem that begs for someone with a grand vision.  Until she comes along - notice what’s going on already.

Wiscasset’s first Farmer’s Market debuted Thursday afternoon. More than half a dozen growers, makers, gardeners, agriculturers, and a coffee roaster, pitched their tents on the shoreline.  While the morning was rainy, by mid-afternoon the weather was glorious. Donna and I took home a loaf of bread, a Whoopee pie, and tasted samples of micro-organic herbs and spices.  Next week, we’ll be looking for grass-fed beef and lamb.

Also on the dock, the replica tall ship USS Providence. It spent the winter on the pier being renovated by master wheelwright Leon Poindexter and crew.  The ship’s mast was completed just a week ago.  Watch a wonderful video of the ‘stepping’.  By the way, Wiscasset looks great in the drone footage. The Providence is on its way to a permanent home in Alexandria, Va. And when it arrives there, it will get  noticed - and Wiscasset will get a lot of credit for its ship building history.

And speaking of activity on the waterfront, the Water Street Kitchen and Bar is said to be aiming to open in a week or two.  Each day, carpenters and plumbers and heating contractors are in and out off the space which was Le Garage for 40 years. There are job openings which you can pursue off a minimalist Web site.  A message on Facebook, from which some of these photos were copied, said, “Here is a sneak preview of what to expect this summer aesthetically!”

I’m watching Water Street. I think it could be a home run.  I hope it is.  Tony Bickford’s proven with Little Village Bistro that a focus on value, quality and service can work in this town. Critics might caution against anything more fancy than pizza, pizza, pizza. But Bickford’s doing it with a lot of hard work and an energetic, attentive staff. The out-of-state license plates in his parking lot show he’s making a mark.  And so does his TripAdvisor 5-star rating.