Friday, April 29, 2022

Business Spotlight: Black Bear Mobile Maintenance

With more than 23 years of expertise that he gained working on military helicopters and marine engines and systems, John Daggett, Jr. established Black Bear Mobile Maintenance a year ago and is now the leading option in the Sebago Lakes Region for those seeking tractor repair and small-engine service.

Daggett’s business offers the convenience of servicing and making repairs directly at a customer’s location and he works on all types, years and models of tractors.

“We are completely mobile. That is the significant aspect of our business. Competitors offer limited mobile repair, and their prices are considerably higher than mine,” Daggett said. “They also tend to work within their brands they sell where I will work on all brands.” 

In offering full-service tractor repairs on-site, Daggett said that he saves his customers costly transport fees and offers highly competitive pricing usually significantly lower than the competition.

Along with providing tractor repairs, Black Bear Mobile Maintenance can also work on other motorized yard equipment as well.

“We can fix just about anything including snow blowers, lawn tractors, generator engines and UTVs,” Daggett said. “I have a 5-star Google customer rating. I pride myself in my quality of service. I offer dealer- level service at a significant savings. I use all factory parts as long as they are available. I’m also federally licensed to work on A/C systems in tractors.”

John Daggett, Jr., and his wife, Jessica, display
an antique Co-Op Tractor they are restoring
at their home in Harrison. Daggett operates
Black Bear Mobile Maintenance, a company
that repairs and services tractors and other
motorized yard equipment throughout the
Lakes Region of Maine and beyond.

Based in Harrison, Black Bear Mobile Maintenance covers Southern and Central Maine in a timely manner and is an authorized Kohler Engine Dealer and Warranty Repair Service.

“We repair of all makes and models of riders, compact and full-size tractors. We make sure that all fluids and chemicals are contained and transported off site to be disposed of properly so there is no impact to the environment. We serve all of Cumberland and most surrounding counties,” Daggett said. 

From an early age, Daggett said he knew that he was born to be a mechanic. Growing up his next-door neighbor kept antique cars on his property and as far back as second grade, Daggett could be found studying the mechanical aspects of those vehicles and how they worked.

Eventually Daggett earned an associate of applied science degree specializing in high-performance motorsports.  He served in the U.S. Marine Corps from May 2001 to May 2006 as a heavy lift helicopter flightline mechanic and then began work in the marine industry as a technician servicing marine engines and systems.

For the past five years, he has specialized in working on tractors and diesel engines and says that he loves his business and the opportunity to help his customers get their tractors back to operating in tip-top shape.

“As the only employee of Black Bear Mobile Maintenance, I can focus squarely on delivering exceptional customer service and quality workmanship,” Daggett said. “The customers I work for are grateful for what I do and the mobility of my business so that I can come to where they are.”

Black Bear Mobile Maintenance works on gas and diesel engines, offers spring and winter tune-up service, hydraulic and transmission repair, steering and sheet metal work, complete driveline repairs and a host of other general mechanical or emergency repair work.

With a diverse mechanical background and experience that makes him well suited to trouble shooting and dealing with challenging issues, Daggett is confident he can tackle and resolve the most complex mechanical problems. 

“There is no job too small or too big that I cannot handle,” he said. “And best of all, I come to you, and you can avoid the hassle of doing it yourself.”

His social media reviews are nothing less than outstanding.

John is great. When you call, he actually answers the phone,” said Chris Paquet Przekop on Facebook. He showed up and fixed my lawn mower. It is a great service! An enthusiastic 5 stars for Black Bear Mobile.”

Great service! John serviced my tractor, and I will be using him again. Highly recommend 5 stars,” said Liz Bucco on Facebook.

“Needed hydraulic fluid and oil changed on my John Deere 2520, he got back to me quickly and set up a date, which he kept. Did what he said he'd do for the price he said he'd do it. And he was super friendly. Will 100 percent use him again,” said Jason Libby on Facebook.

For more information about Black Bear Mobile Maintenance, visit or call 207-595-6256. Find them on Facebook under Black Bear Mobile Maintenance. <

Friday, April 22, 2022

Business Spotlight: Studio Aerie

Ashley Sevigny founded the upscale Studio Aerie in Windham a year ago and her mission is to uplift her clients and inspire them on their journey to enhance their natural beauty. 

A full-service salon offers hair styling, lashes and facial waxing. Studio Aerie is located at 824 Roosevelt Trail Unit 5 next door to the Crowsnest barbershop in the Erik’s Church Plaza in Windham. 

“I love what I do and the best thing about my job is I have the ability to help others to feel their best self,” Sevigny said. “They can come in here having a bad day and when they leave, they are feeling better about themselves.”

Sevigny said Studio Aerie intends to add services based upon customer wants and needs.

“We offer blowout packages for customers to have the salon look on the regular,” she said. “We offer everything from color services to cuts and styling. We also have Windham’s first custom blowout bar. Come in for a 45-minute blowout service, and then relax have a complimentary beverage.”

Flexibility for customers is at the heart of Studio Aerie’s success and the salon is open six days a week from Monday through Saturday.

“We offer our services in salon and we are able to provide on-location services for weddings,” Sevigny said. “We also offer the ability to reserve the salon for bridal parties, birthdays, bachelorette parties and other occasions where services are offered at a discount with a base rate for the private event. Our customers come from all over.”

Being in the personal services industry, the Studio Aerie staff is as skilled at listening to clients as much as providing hair styling.

“We have to change hats a lot with different clients,” Sevigny said. “The next client to come in might have just lost her husband and you never know the things people are experiencing. We’re constantly recreating new feelings and helping them not only look but feel their best.”

Sevigny said though that the reason Studio Aerie is a success is because of its styling expertise.   

"We have found most of customers are more concerned with the end result versus the cost of the service,” she said. “We put all of our attention and focus into giving the customer their desired result.”

According to Sevigny, the mission of Studio Aerie is to perform its services to the highest quality.

“We have in-salon classes that six staff members attend. We are all learning and working together to help ensure the client leaves with what is best for them given their desired outcome and keeping the integrity of their hair always as a priority. Beautiful hair is healthy hair.”

Sevigny said although the design of Studio Aerie is stunning visually, rates are competitive, and the public is always welcome.

“We’ve had clients tell me they felt they needed to dress up to come in,” she said. “That’s not the case. We’re open and accepting of everyone. Personally, we do not feel as though we are in competition with anyone locally or not in the beauty industry. We are all for supporting women and all people in this community of cosmetologist and beauty professionals. Something that might make us stand out from other salons is the attention to detail we put into our build out. We wanted to bring a true high-end feel to our beautiful town.”

Whatever Studio Aerie is doing is working because as of April 30 the business has officially been open for one year and is celebrating with some special gifts. Everyone who purchases a $100 gift card from April 23 to April 30 will receive a $25 product discount.

“First and foremost, we want anyone who hasn’t had the opportunity to come in and meet us or see our space to know that our door is open, and we welcome anyone to come by,” Sevigny said. “We are happy to show you around, talk about your needs and at the very least give you a blowout to start your day, night or any event off with beautiful hair.”

To learn more about Studio Aerie or to make an appointment, call 207- 893-8767. Or visit the Studio Aerie website at Find them on Facebook and Instagram at studioaeriewindham <

Friday, April 15, 2022

Spotlight: The Hawthorne House

The childhood home of Nathaniel Hawthorne in Raymond is where he dreamed of becoming an author, came to admire nature and all its beauty and inspired his love of storytelling. Built in 1811 and listed on the National Register of historic places, the home has been renovated and is now available as a meeting and gathering space for up to 50 people at a time. 

Located at 40 Hawthorne Road in Raymond, The Hawthorne House is suitable for future use by the public for a variety of functions.

Historically the Hawthorne House has functioned as a quasi-museum, however since in the late 1880s the interior was largely removed, and it became a large open interior space with historical significance as the childhood home of Hawthorne, who gained everlasting fame in American literature for his novels The Scarlet Letter and The House of the Seven Gables. The board overseeing the restoration project of the landmark structured has determined the house is best served for small meetings for local organizations.

“Although the Hawthorne House is a historical landmark and is open to all we are limiting our ‘approach’ as a community center predominantly for organizations in Raymond and Windham,” said Tom Ewig, a Hawthorne Community Association board member.

Ewig said with the renovation work performed on The Hawthorne House, the board has taken a shell of a structure and is trying to make it more relevant to the local area.

“The whole point of our efforts, which have included almost $100,000 of renovations to the foundation/exterior and interior, is to make the building more relevant to our neighbors as a place for meetings and functions instead of it remaining largely unused for much of the year,” he said. “We want our neighbors to know where we are, what we are, and how they can use this great and historical house for their particular needs, for small meetings, as an organization headquarters, for art or photography exhibitions, special functions, and many other uses.”

According to Ewig, the availability of The Hawthorne House in Raymond as a gathering spot is a great local resource.

“We want the community to enjoy the building and make broader use of it. We have already booked a number of functions and have a calendar on our website where we can accept bookings,” he said. “The Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce will have their April Business Break here. The Raymond Waterways Association will have their annual meeting here and we have an individual who will be celebrating a family member’s 100th birthday here just to get us started. More to come.”

Nathaniel Hawthorne was born on July 4, 1804, in Salem, Massachusetts, a descendant of William Hathorne, a Puritan who emigrated with his family from England to the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Hawthorne’s grandfather, John Hathorne, was a judge who presided over some of the Salem Witch Trials.

Hawthorne’s mother was widowed when he was age 4 and after living for 10 years with relatives in Salem, the family moved to a home near Sebago Lake in Raymond built for them by Hawthorne’s uncles Richard and Robert Manning. He lived there with his family until being sent to boarding school in 1819, but later in life, Hawthorne said that the time he spent at that home in Raymond was the happiest period of his life.

Currently the availability of space for private functions within the Raymond and Windham areas is rather limited, and it’s believed the addition of The Hawthorne House to the mix will broaden that footprint.

Further renovation work is planned and volunteers plan to add outdoor seating and picnic tables so in the summer months any overflow guests from events can be accommodated there.

The board of 12 volunteers for The Hawthorne House conceived a plan to bring a 19th century house in poor shape back to life and of significance in the 21st century while moving the project from a vision to a reality.

“We have had a very gratifying response to our capital campaign and have increased our membership to almost 100 from some 20 or 30 one year ago,” Ewig said. “We will launch a second capital campaign shortly which we hope will then cover all costs of renovation and give us a showcase building to serve the community for years to come.”

To learn more about The Hawthorne House, to become a member or to book a reservation, visit or find them on Facebook under Nathaniel Hawthorne House. <

Friday, April 8, 2022

Spotlight: The Refuge Church

In a little more than five years since its inception, The Refuge Church continues to grow and is all about helping discover why they were created. 

“We’re all seeking meaning and purpose in our lives,” said Pastor Adam Herald of The Refuge. “We believe The Refuge is a place where everyone can find that.”

From its new location at 765 Roosevelt Trail in Windham, members of The Refuge are excited about the upcoming Easter season and beyond.

Easter is a big one,” Herald said. “We are offering our regular worship experiences at 9 and 11 a.m. on Easter Sunday. However, for this year we are asking people to register for one of our services at simply so that we know how to best serve the people in attendance that day.”

Another event that church members are excited about is the return of Windham’s annual Summerfest in June.

“We have partnered with the Town of Windham in the past to provide an inflatable playground at the event,” Herald said. “What I love about what we do at Summerfest is that this inflatable playground is free to the public.  Because of the generosity of our people, we are able to sponsor this with no cost to the community. I'm really looking forward to this event this year because I've really missed it the past.”

According to Herald, the church’s future objectives are simple.

“The goal for the future in our community is the same as the goal today. We want to show people that when they make Jesus their Refuge, they never have to be overwhelmed by the storms of this life. If we've learned anything over the past two or three years, it's that storms in life come.  The question we must answer is, ‘Where do I run when those storms come?’  Well, we hope to be a small part of the answer to that question.”

Herald said that the mission of The Refuge is when they make Jesus their "Refuge," they never have to be overwhelmed by the storms of this life.

“Storms in this life are guaranteed to happen, but the good news is that there is a place and a person to run to.  We show people how to make Jesus their Refuge,” he said. “We do this through our Weekend Experiences every Sunday morning at 9 and 11 a.m.  We also do this through providing an opportunity to form relationships in small groups.  The number one need we all have is relationships, people need people.  One of the greatest services that we can provide at The Refuge is relationships.”

The one aspect that distinguishes The Refuge from other local places of worship is its culture, Herald said.

“I think the thing that separates any organization from the next is the Culture,” he said. “At the Refuge we have five ‘Culture Values’ that we focus on including:

1- We will be dreamers and risk takers.  Not settling our dreams to remain dreams.

2- We will be known what we are for and not what we are against.

3- We will laugh as much as we breathe... as hard as we can stand... and a little louder than normal.

4- We will be in our city and for our city and fiercely love people we haven't even met yet.

5- We will be excellent in all things, because excellence honors God and inspires people

Herald says that the church is as relevant today as when it was founded on March 5, 2017.

“I think the most significant thing we do is just give people a place to belong,” he said. “We always say, ‘You don't have to believe what we believe to belong here.’ People have told us over and over that they have found a place to belong at The Refuge Church.”

Another factor that draws those searching for a great church to The Refuge is its warmth and acceptance of others.

“We love people because God loves people,” Herald said. “He has a purpose and a plan for mankind.  That plan includes knowing him, living in freedom, discovering why we were created, and for us to leave an impact in this world. If anyone is interested in these things, we invite them to come check us out.”

For more information about The Refuge, call 614-REFUGE (614-733-8431), visit the church website at  or find them on Facebook at The Refuge Church. <

Friday, April 1, 2022

Business Spotlight: Cumberland Title Services, Inc.

The leading provider of title services throughout Maine is under new ownership and remains committed to developing strong and trustworthy relationships with everyone they serve while also continuing to be a great place to work for its employees. 

Ownership of the company recently transitioned from Matthew J. McDonald, Esq., to Thomas E. Schoening III, Esq., who brings a wealth of experience working for other title companies in Maine and the Portland-based Law firm of Drummond & Drummond, LLP. Former owner McDonald will continue to be involved with Cumberland Title, performing closings and continuing education classes for real estate professionals.

With six convenient locations in Maine, including its main office at 585 Roosevelt Trail in Windham, Cumberland Title acts as an intermediary between mortgage loan officers and real estate agents to do everything necessary to facilitate real estate closings.

Its customers rely on Cumberland Title to go above and beyond to make sure the actual parties buying and selling real estate enjoy a smooth closing process. The company also assists investors and private parties with cash closings and other commercial real estate transactions. 
Thomas E. Schoening III, Esq., is the new owner
of Cumberland Title Services.
According to Schoening, modern residential real estate closings have over the years become a fairly complicated process. The stack of documents to be signed at the closing table just keeps getting bigger. It’s our job to make sure the all the documents and steps related to the transaction, including the purchase and sale agreements, title insurance, home insurance, and mortgage financing, come together in a seamless way.

“We help Mainers and people from all over the world realize their dream of owning property in Maine,” Schoening said. “We want people to know that this company has been around since 1986, and the ownership change signals growth and a renewed commitment to being the gold standard title company of Maine.”

Schoening said that there is no better feeling than doing a closing for first-time homebuyers and new families and helping them realize their dream of purchasing their first home.

“Homebuyers rely on their mortgage loan officers and real estate agent to help them with the most complicated, expensive and stressful financial transaction of their lives,” he said. “Mortgage loan officers and real estate agents in turn rely on Cumberland Title to make sure the closing process is completed accurately, smoothly and on time. We take this responsibility very seriously and have earned the trust of our customer relationships. The most valuable assets of Cumberland Title are the personal relationships between our employees and the mortgage loan officers and real estate agents that we serve.”

Because there is significant competition in the industry, the company’s commitment to customer relationships and providing the highest quality services is what sets Cumberland Title apart,” Schoening said. 

“We are also very proud to be 100 percent owned and operated by Mainers. We are a true Maine owned small business serving the entire state,” he said. “Working with Cumberland Title is just more personal than working with a large national title company.”

The greatest misconception people often have about our service relates to title insurance, Schoening said. “People think title insurance is really expensive and that they don’t really need it,” he said. “That’s not the case. Title Insurance truly protects a person’s title (ownership) in their home, often the greatest financial investment a person will make in their lifetime.”

Offering competitive fees and superior quality service to its customers, Cumberland Title Services strives to ensure a home buying process that is as worry free and smooth as possible.

“As a title company we have a front row seat to the real estate market. We’ve seen the housing market boom in the past few years, with historically low interest rates. We have enjoyed seeing the high number of young families and first-time home buyers establish roots in Windham, Raymond and the greater Lakes Region. With the influx of new families, we see the local area continuing to flourish as a vibrant community for families and businesses for many years to come,” Schoening said. There is still plenty of opportunity for homeowners in the Lakes Region to take advantage of this market. Summer 2022 is gearing up to be a very exciting, albeit competitive, season for people buying and selling homes.”

FMI about Cumberland Title, call 207-893-9000 or visit Find them on Instagram at cumberlandtitle and on Facebook at Title. <