Friday, March 07, 2008

Cryptozoology, murder, and more!

Well, it's been a great week in Strange Maine land, with some stand-out talks by local experts, from historical mill girl murders to monsters in our midst!

First we had Loren Coleman giving a great presentation at both the Belfast Library (Monday, read a terrific article about it on Cryptomundo) and the Portland Public Library (Wednesday), which resulted in an article on the Portland Phoenix's website, titled "Have You Ever Seen the Maine Mutant?"

I had the great pleasure of introducing Loren to the noontime crowd which attended the Portland Public Library talk. He gave a terrific overview of the current state of the cryptozoological field, as well as filling in the history for those curious souls in the audience who have yet to explore that field. His presentation include a wealth of pop-culture artifact examples, and plenty of intriguing slide imagery not often seen by the public. I was curious to find out what he viewed as being the most important Maine cryptid sightings. On his list are, among others, the sightings of the Casco Bay sea serpent, a.k.a. Cassie, and the Specter Moose, which I and others have pondered over the last couple of years.

Read more about the Specter Moose:
  • The original Specter Moose post

  • Cryptomundo article about Coleman's article about the moose in TAPS Paramagazine

  • Alex at the Museum of Hoaxes has dug up the actual newspaper articles about the moose

  • Second, Elizabeth De Wolfe gave a lively talk about her recent book, The Murder of Mary Bean and Other Stories, which is also the topic of a current exhibit at the Saco Museum put together by a very talented group. De Wolfe read and illustrated excerpts from the book, summarizing the sensational case, and enthusiastically answered a round of detailed questions in the intense question and answer session held following the reading. Great stuff!

    The Saco Museum exhibit is titled Murder, Mystery & the Mills: The Story of Mary Bean, and it is open from Feb. 28 - May 25, 2008. We strongly recommend you both read the book and see the exhibit! The hours of the museum are Tue., Wed., Fri. Sat: 12 - 4 p.m., and Thur.: 12 - 8 p.m. Admission varies for adults ($4), seniors ($3), students/children ($2), but best of all, supervised children under 6 are FREE, and there is universal Free Admission on Thursdays from 4 - 8 p.m.

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