Spirit of America 2016
On October 18, members of the Wright Landing Committee and the Horticulture Committee were honored as the 2016 Westport Island Spirit of America recipients. Spirit of America awards are given to individuals or groups which exemplify service to community.
The Wright Landing Committee and the Horticulture Committee, which was created to beautify the landing, have worked together to develop and manage the Wright Landing property as a public boat landing and park. Members devote many volunteer hours throughout the year in various ways to make our public landing accessible and welcoming to residents, fishermen, boaters and visitors. Their efforts have included:
- Applying for grants and managing funded improvements that added a walkway and jetty to improve the landing’s facilities as a boat ramp for residents, fishermen and visitors;
- Managing the overall improvement, development and landscaping of the public landing and park;
- Overseeing the annual installation and removal of the ramps and floats;
- Maintaining and advocating for the Wright Landing house and property;
- Creating and maintaining a landscaping design and perennial garden that has beautified the landing and provided a changing display of blooms and color from Spring into Fall; and
- Transforming the Wright property into a proud community landmark where town office staff routinely send new residents or prospective property purchasers – to see both its scenic beauty and its facilities for providing public access to the water.
The Wright Landing Committee and the Horticulture Committee have created a community asset which has garnered praise from residents, fishermen and visitors as well as representatives from area town conservation committees.
Not all members could be present at the Lincoln County awards ceremony, but all are recognized by the town in its award of appreciation — Wright Landing Committee: Richard DeVries, Chair; Al Andrews; Robert Morris; Ken Parsons; and Bruce Whittemore as well as past chair, Art Ballard, and John Nelson, in memoriam; and Horticulture Committee: Donna Curry, Chair; Emily Adler; Brad Adler; Elizabeth Lee; Gretchen McNamara and Debbie Williams.
Honoring our veterans
On Wednesday, members of the Cemetery Committee spent their day hiking into the dozens of small cemeteries that dot Westport Island. They placed 50 flags to honor our veterans in readiness for today’s tradition of taking time to remember and celebrate the service of those who sacrifice and serve in our nation’s armed forces.
Following is a reprint of the Dedication from the 2003 Westport Island Town Report written by Bill Wright to give a face to one of the Islander’s who served: his father, Adrien Wright.
It was Adrien Wright’s wish that his land, the old ferry landing, now called “Wright Landing” be town property for the enjoyment of all its citizens…
In Memory of “Ade” and Mary Wright…
Dad was a gunner on a B17 bomber in World War II, was shot down over Germany and was in a prison camp for 1 1/2 years.
Mom and Dad (Adrien and Mary) moved to Westport Island in the summer of 1947. They purchased the Old Parsonage House, on top the hill on the left side of West Shore Road, from George Knight. We had great neighbors there across the road in the summer with Ester and Lewie Doyle and of course George Knight. Dad dug clams for two summers, purchased an old lobster boat and hauled clams up and down the river with friends, Amos Knight, George Spinney, Jack McEachern, Frank Fowler and sons and many others.
In 1950, Dad started digging saltwater worms for Fred Bolwin of Woolwich and liked that so much he started his own worm business in the spring of 1951. For many years, he purchased worms from diggers on Westport Island. Almost all the men, young and old, that lived on Westport Island dug worms for Dad at some time or another.
In the spring of 1962, Adrien and Bill Wright started Wrights’ Bait, Inc. We started buying sea worms from all along the coast of Maine. In 1969 both families, Mom and Dad, Bill, Jeanine and kids all lived in Addison, Maine and ran a large Marine Worm Business there.
In 1976, Ade and Mary moved back to Westport Island, retired from the worm business and remained on Westport Island enjoying many happy days with friends and family. Mom was a self-taught pianist and enjoyed playing the piano at family gatherings. She also enjoyed her flowers and flower gardens. Their home at this time was at the property of the old ferry landing.
The last time I was with Dad, i took him out on his deck and we looked up and down the Sheepscot River. He said, “Bill look how beautiful this is”.
Many Happy Memories
Son of Adrien and Mary Wright