We are now in week 17 of this experiment with The Buzz. Our purpose is to encourage thoughtful, open-minded conversations about issues that are important to people in Rockland. We’re not sure we have all the answers, but we do have questions, and a belief that democracy works when people talk to each other.
The Buzz is published by WRFR radio, an experiment that is now fifteen years old. WRFR has thrived as an all-volunteer station, one that is open to everyone in our community. We are rich and poor, school drop-outs and PhDs, Trump voters and Hillary voters, teenagers and octogenarians, hosts of classical music shows and dee jays of hip-hop shows, fast talkers and good listeners, optimists and pessimists, orthodox and unorthodox: more than fifty very different people who respect each other and enjoy working together to give voice to the life and creativity of our Rockland metro area.
The goal of The Buzz is to continue this spirit in a modest weekly publication that supplements our radio presence. WRFR’s radio waves are probably passing through you as you read this, at 93.3 MHz in Rockland and 99.3 in Camden, but unless you tune in on a radio, we are out of mind. The Buzz, on the other hand, is not everywhere, but where it is, it is visible, inviting you to take advantage of this unique community resource.
At the heart of WRFR is the belief that we must be more than just spectators to the big national show, we must be thinkers and doers, and we must contribute our attention to helping build the wise consensus that we, the people, need for our democracy to survive.
All politics, and all culture, is local. WRFR and The Buzz are proudly local media, but our conversations, though they are about things that are close to us, inevitably involve larger philosophical, cultural, political and practical questions.
To be wise in these matters we must understand something of history, always a useful subject for research. It should be sobering to reflect that only 500 years ago most of our ancestors were serfs. Our freedom and democracy is a recent legacy, one that that we must maintain, or lose. WRFR and The Buzz are a small part of this grand enterprise. As Tolstoy wrote, “To be universal, sing your village.”
So far, the 17 issues of The Buzz have been written by yours truly, Joe Steinberger. I hope to write many more, but for this enterprise to be sustainable there must be others who write sometimes too.
The story each week in The Buzz is simply a suggestion for a conversation. It does not need to be flowery, or witty, or scholarly. We are not trying to impress or convince, but to incite reflection and discussion.
The goal each week is to present useful facts, and a thoughtful and respectful personal perspective on a topic that interests the writer. On the Wednesday evening following publication, we will have a radio conversation on that topic. The writer is invited, as is everyone who would like to join us in the studio. We have room for up to twelve.
Please consider volunteering as a writer (or photographer) for The Buzz. You could write just one, a few, or many, and each time the topic will be yours to choose. The possibilities for topics are endless, from politics to the arts, from the practical to the abstract. We want to have fun thinking, and sharing, and building our community, and we want your help.
This Wednesday evening from 5 to 6 on WRFR we will be talking about how to grow The Buzz. Please join us, at home, or in the studio.
WRFR broadcasts on 93.3 fm Rockland and 99.3 fm Camden, and streams online at WRFR.org, where The Buzz is also available. To contact The Buzz, and especially to take us up on this invitation to write, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Joe at 596-0731.
Rockland Area Events
Friday July 14 to Friday July 21
* Friday July 14 Bug Safari 10 am Families invited to
explore the gardens and meadows for insects. Nets provided. Free
at Merryspring Nature Center, Camden. email@example.com or
236-2239. Will be canceled if heavy rain. Maine Windjammer
Parade 2-4 pm Fleet of tall ships in a Parade of Sail past Rockland
Breakwater provides amazing vessel views and photo opportunities.
sailmainecoast.com. Rock Harbor Brewing 3 pm Celebrate the
new brewing facilities and tasting room at Rock Harbor Brewing
Co. at 5 Payne Ave. in Rockland. 3-day event through Sunday at 5
pm with live music, Blaze food truck and lots of hand-crafted beer.
Founders’ Weekend 6 pm Union kicks off weekend-long
celebration of heritage on the Common with pie, bus tour, live
music featuring Torpedoes, and dramatic reading of Come Spring
Chronicles based on Come Spring novel by Ben Ames Williams. $12
bus tour. 385-4611. Paint Night 6-8 pm Sean Boyd leads class in
painting a Beached Boat. $35 at Art Loft. artloftofrockland.org or
200-7915. Open Mic 6:30-9:30 pm St. George River Café in
Warren Village hosts with featured performer singer/songwriter
Karen Gray. Sign-up at 6 pm. $6 cover. Blind Albert’s Blues
Jam 7 pm Rockland’s own blues man helps kick off North Atlantic
Blues Festival at Rock City Café, free. 594-4123. Be warned – this
night could go longer than the traditional 9 pm in this venue! Check
out other pre-Blues Fest bands at Speakeasy, Time Out, Rock
Harbor Restaurant, Myrtle Street Tavern and Trackside Station.
Gordon Bok 7:30 pm Local folk artist performs at Sail, Power &
Steam Museum, Rockland. $15 advance/$20 door.
sailpowersteammuseum.org. Comedian Caroline Rhea 7:30
pm Comic plays Camden Opera House. $25/$30 door. 536-5850 or
* Saturday July 15 Costume Giveaway 8 am-4 pm By
Camden Civic Theatre at 607 Main St, Rockland. First come, first
served. Harbor Arts and Books 9 am Annual arts and crafts
event featuring over 80 artists and artisans in Camden Harbor
Park. Camden Library book sale under the tent on front lawn on
Route 1. North Atlantic Blues Fest Premier annual live blues
music event runs all day Saturday and Sunday at Harbor Park in
Rockland. $40 day/$75 weekend. Under 12 $5/free under 5.
Festival hotline 691-2248 or BluesFestival.com Club Crawl Main
St. closed to traffic in evening as 5 bands play for free. Fest
wristband wearers admitted to bands playing indoor clubs. Ale
House String Band 7 pm String trio plays Rock City Café, free.
* Sunday July 16 Morning Blues 9 am Blue Gene will get
you into the groove before you head back to the Blues fest. Rock
City Café, free. 594-4123.
* Monday July 17 Lamb to Rug 1-4 pm Shearing, dyeing,
spinning, rug-hooking demos at Deer Foot Farm, Rt. 131, Appleton.
MoJO 6:30 pm An 18-member community Big Band at Camden
Public Library Amphitheatre. Bring chairs or blankets. Free.
* Tuesday July 18 Tuesday Talk 5:30 pm CMCA kicks off
its seasonal Tuesday Talks with artist John Walker and Farnsworth
Art Museum Director, Christopher Crossman. Free with CMCA
admission. cmcanow.org. Storytellers Open Mic 7 pm Camden
Library presents its first storytellers open mic inspired by the Moth
Radio Hour. Stories limited to 5 minutes. All welcome.
firstname.lastname@example.org or 236-3440.
* Wednesday July 19 Acrylic Painting 2-3:30 pm Angela
Anderson leads class each Wednesday through summer. 3 weeks for
$50, or $17 drop-in class. Art Loft. artloftofrockland.org or 200-
7915. Rockland Metro WRFR 5-6 pm Show discussion topic:
Growing Up in Rockland. To join on air conversation, call 593-
0013. To participate in studio conversation, email
* Thursday July 20 Author Christina Baker Kline 7 pm
On her new book A Piece of the World, in which she imagines the
life of Christina Olson, neighbor and muse to artist Andrew Wyeth.
Camden Public Library. Graham Nash 7:30 pm Live at Savage
Oakes Vineyard & Winery in Union. Bring chair or blanket. $56.
* Friday July 21 Paint Night 6-8 pm Angela Anderson leads
class in painting Summer Beach. $35 Artloft. artloftofrockland.org
Submit Events to WRFRevents@gmail.com