STOCKHOLM, Maine — The people of Stockholm and surrounding communities have come together to raise money for a variety of community development projects in town.
The effort kicked off last September when the Maine Boating Facilities Program approved a $73,800 matching grant to assist in building a handicap-accessible boat launch off Little Madawaska River as well as to help improve and create walking and bicycling trails.
S.W. Collins Company of Caribou recently donated $3,000 to assist with the boat launch project, and company president Sam Collins stated in a press release that he and the company are pleased to be able to contribute.
“The S.W. Collins Company has a cherished history with the community of Stockholm,” he said, “having past logging camps in close proximity and a sawmill on the banks of the Madawaska River approximately 100 yard from the Eureka Hall restaurant and Anderson’s grocery store. We are pleased to be able to assist the many dedicated volunteers and community to provide better access to the water, resources, and trails that will be developed for year-round recreation.”
Among those dedicated volunteers is Stockholm Planning Board member Dave Strainge who, along with Mike Sandstrom and Anderson’s Store Co-Owner Suzy Anderson, helped the project come to fruition.
Strainge said earlier this year that Sandstrom was “instrumental in the comprehensive planning process” of the project and quickly recruited several community members for the task. Anderson also donated ten acres of land previously owned by her father Fred Anderson to help with the project.
The bid for construction, which Strainge said should be completed this year, was awarded to Soderberg Construction of Caribou.
“I can safely say that we’ve achieved enough funding to get the boat launch,” he said on Monday. “We’re now at the stage where additional funding will be used for the follow-on portion of the project with trail improvements.”
Strainge said that, while the initial estimate for the boat launch was about $150,000 (with $73,800 coming from the state), the town’s funding goal of $25,000 has been exceeded. He also believes the boat launch will cost less than the initial $150,000 estimate. Aside from the $25,000, he said the state also will match the monetary value of labor, and that B.R. Smith Associates of Presque Isle, the civil engineers for the project, has already donated some of their labor costs toward the match.
“Fundraising has been pretty successful,” he said. “Collins was one of the big donors, and a couple other businesses also made sizable donations. One of our local citizens donated a Model T. Ford which is being raffled off.”
Once the boat launch is finished, Strainge said the town will focus on trail renovations, which may also happen this summer.
“It’s essentially an area where people can offload snowmobiles in the winter or ATVs in the summer and park their trailer off the road,” he said. “Right now, people offload in the Legion Hall parking lot and leave their trailers there. It hasn’t really been more than an inconvenience, but now we’re going to have a chance to centralize that.”
The plan is to connect the offloading area to the 10 acres of land donated by Anderson, and potentially create some trails for non-motorized activity such as walking or biking.
“We’re at the stage now where we’ve gathered enough money and are looking ahead to the next phases of the project,” he said.
Anyone interested in learning more about the Stockholm Landing and Trails organization or donating to the effort can visit the “Stockholm Landing And Trails” Facebook page or call Strainge at (207) 896-3159.