Aug 22, 2008

'Travesty Island' pageant on Sears Island August 31

"Travesty Island," a free theatrical event to protest plans to develop Sears Island, will be held Sunday, August 31, at 1 p.m. near the gate at the north end of the publicly owned island.

The event is intended to draw attention to the Baldacci Administration's second effort to build an unneeded industrial port on what is now the largest remaining totally wild island in public hands on the East Coast, and to chide several conservation groups for supporting the plan.

In the pageant, giant "Grim Reaper" figures personifying the forces of industrial sprawl and ecological destruction will face off against a thin line of defenders barring them from the island, led by the Green Knight and Diana, goddess of all things wild. Representatives of the island's wild animals and its marine life, its old forests and its fertile eelgrass beds will also be there defending their island home. Who will triumph?

Come cheer on the forces of creation and nature against those of destruction. Want to be part of this family-friendly pageant? There's still time! Call 548-2950 or 323-2757. Or just show up at the island at Sunday at 1pm. Bring a mask, a drum or other instrument, or just you and your friends.

In addition to the Governor, the pageant will criticise the Maine chapter of the Sierra Club, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, Coastal Mountains Land Trust, Islesboro Island Land Trust and several other groups for signing onto an agreement that terms a Sears Island industrial port "appropriate" - even though it will mean the outright paving over of some 40 percent of the 941-acre island, and would badly fragment the eelgrass-laden nursery shoal edging the island.

In return the Baldacci Administration will hand over control of the island's remaining 600 acres to those groups, and allow them to build a major development of their own there – a multimillion-dollar "EcoWorld Theme Park" involving up to 10,000 square feet of roofed structures and a complex of access roads and parking lots.

"The Maine Sierra Club and the land trusts are providing green cover for a port project that ought to be setting off alarms in anyone who values our fast-dwindling natural resources," says Peter Taber of Searsport, one of those taking part in the "Travesty Island" pageant.

Directions: Take the Sears Island Road located on Route 1, two miles north of downtown Searsport on Route 1. The road ends on the causeway to the island. Look for the banners.

For more information: Ron at 691-7485 Suzanne at 548-2950 or Peter at 323-2757.


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