Category Archives: Augusta

Franklin Graham brings Decision America Tour 2016 to Maine

Part of the estimated crowd of 3,200 listening to Franklin Graham at Capitol Park (Augusta ME)

Part of the estimated crowd of 3,200 listening to Franklin Graham at Capitol Park (Augusta ME)

Franklin Graham on his way to the stage in Augusta

Franklin Graham on his way to the stage in Augusta

(Augusta ME) I was in the crowd today as Franklin Graham’s Decision America 2016 Tour came to Maine on a sunny Tuesday.

Part of the reason for going was getting an invite from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association to attend a reception prior to the rally.

I wondered at first why I had even gotten an invitation for such an event.  Later I surmised that long-time donors to BGEA made the list.  My wife and I decided many years ago that tithing was important and that we needed to be supporting worthwhile ministries on a monthly basis.  BGEA was on our list and we may have been contributing to them for over thirty years.

The reception was at the Governor Hill Mansion starting at 10:30AM.  I was there just after 9AM!  Not real familiar with Augusta.  Not sure about parking.  Rather be early than rushing around late.

I was so early that there was hardly anyone there.  I checked in and had a muffin and then decided to go out and enjoy a sunny, cool morning.

I got back about 10:15 to find the Columbus Room nearly filled.  I found a seat on the outside aisle about halfway up.  Good spot for picture taking.

Franklin speaks at the reception at the Governor Hill Mansion

Franklin speaks at the reception at the Governor Hill Mansion

After a short intro, Franklin came on.  He delivered plenty of stories about the different ministries BGEA is involved in.  Nothing makes a contributor happier than to learn about how their financial support makes a difference.

After Franklin’s half hour another gentleman spoke briefly about some gifts that each of us would get as we left.  One was a prayer journal.  I appreciated the fact that the BGEA staff was aware of the sunshine outside and that a ten-minute walk was in our future.  They offered bottles of cold water to each of us.  Very considerate.

The main rally was supposed to be at the State Capitol but BGEA couldn’t get a permit for it because of the expected size of the crowd.  So the event was across the street at the Capitol Park.

What was nice about that spot was that there were plenty of trees providing plenty of shade.  The crowd estimate was 3,200 but I wonder how any figuring could have been done.

I realized quickly that I would not be able to get close enough to the stage to get any kind of picture.  My goal was to get Franklin before he got to the stage.  But where would he be coming from?  I figured that mystery out shortly after I figured out where their tour bus was.  Outside the bus was what looked like security so I knew he was on the bus and would be coming my way.  That information set up a couple of pretty good pictures.

Dennis Agajanian

Dennis Agajanian

Prior to Franklin’s stage arrival a singer named Dennis Agajanian performed.

Franklin spoke forcefully.  He made it clear that he didn’t trust either the Democrats or the Republicans.  He also had nothing good to say about the current administration.  He made it clear that we needed to trust in God.  He stressed the importance of prayer.  He also spelled out the salvation message.  It was all good stuff for sure.

At a gathering of this type you always wonder if there might be some kind of protest.  The only evidence I saw of someone not enthralled with what was going on was a lady carrying a sign that said, “Unabashed Atheist.”

This was the 37th state that Franklin has visited.  He’ll end in North Carolina in October.  Tomorrow he’ll be in Vermont and Thursday in New York.  He’ll be in Massachusetts next Tuesday and I may take the train in, from Newburyport, to be there.

The visit today to Augusta was informative and uplifting.   The BGEA is doing some terrific things.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

"Unabashed Atheist"

“Unabashed Atheist”

Crowd from behind the stage

Crowd from behind the stage

Franklin greets an attendee

Franklin greets an attendee

Franklin Graham

Franklin Graham

Franklin walking from the tour bus to the stage

Franklin walking from the tour bus to the stage

Franklin speaking at reception

Franklin speaking at reception

Ready for the sun

Ready for the sun

Crowd at Columbus Hall

Crowd at Columbus Hall

Governor Hill Mansion

Governor Hill Mansion

Dennis Agajanian

Dennis Agajanian

Maine state capitol

Maine state capitol

Tour bus

Tour bus

Speaking at Columbus Hall in Augusta before the rally

Speaking at Columbus Hall in Augusta before the rally

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Augusta, Decision America Tour 2016, Franklin Graham

Somerset defeats Augusta 11-8 in 13-year-old Babe Ruth state tournament

Dustin Crawford was the starter and closer for Somerset allowing just one run.

(Harrison) Somerset defeated Augusta, 11-8, in the 13-year-old Babe Ruth 2012 state baseball tournament on a cool Thursday night at RADR Field.

The victory keeps Somerset in the winner’s bracket and sets up a date with equally undefeated Central Maine at 7PM this evening (Friday) back at RADR Field.

Augusta moves into the other bracket in this double elimination tournament and needs to stay clean the rest of the way for a chance at the state title and a possible rematch with Somerset.

Augusta had faced Somerset in a district matchup on July 14th with Somerset winning, 5-4.  The stakes were much higher in Thursday night’s game.

score checking

This tourney game was large on runs, errors, pitchers used, and controversy.  Augusta had a nice five-run inning in the bottom of the third to take a 6-4 advantage.  Unfortunately, one of those runs was taken away in the top of the fourth and that’s where the controversy began.

The five runs should have stayed in my opinion.  Let me draw it out in the shortest way possible: Augusta sent nine batters to the plate in that inning, three batters made outs, and one runner was on base when the last out was recorded.  There is no conceivable way that Augusta wouldn’t have had to have scored five runs……….but the ruling stood and fortunately the removed run didn’t matter at the end.

The pitching of starter/closer Dustin Crawford saved the day for Somerset.  Dustin pitched the first two innings and gave up one run on one hit.  He was back in the seventh as the closer to protect a 3-run lead and responded with a scoreless final inning.

Close play at third as Brady Smith waits for Brendan Curran

Somerset exploded for seven runs in the sixth inning after two outs to turn a 6-4 deficit into an 11-6 advantage.  Kyle Dugan (3 hits/3 RBI) had two of his hits in the decisive sixth as Somerset sent twelve men to the plate.

During that inning, Augusta replaced tiring starter Justin Rodrigue with the bases loaded and no runs in.  After striking out Mason Oakes for the second out Justin’s replacement, Andrew Browne, surrendered a walk and four straight hits before the bleeding was stopped by reliever Kolbe Merfeld. But Somerset at that point had a five-run lead.

Augusta got two back in the bottom of the sixth thanks to Brady Smith’s two-run single.  However, they left the bases loaded as reliever Brendan Curran escaped by striking out Zach Glidden and sending Somerset into the seventh with a three-run (11-8) advantage.

The most acrobatic sequence in this game was Taylor Heath jumping in an attempt to avoid the tag of catcher Will Stinson.  Taylor was ruled out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Somerset ended up with eight hits while Augusta had seven.

Brendan Curran drove in two runs and scored three runs for Somerset.

Andrew Browne and Brady Smith each had two hits for Augusta.  Brady added four RBI.

Dylan Abbott made several terrific plays in center for Augusta.

There were at least seven errors by my count most of them on infield grounders.

There were also seven different pitchers used as both coaches tried to balance the need to win this game with the need to have eligible pitchers in the games ahead.

If the weather stays good a state 13’s champion will be crowned on Sunday night at RADR Field.

(The pictures above and below enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

Will Stinson scores in the sixth

Kolbe Merfeld – scored two runs

Brendan Curran – scored three runs and had two RBI

Augusta bench

Justin Rodrigue catches a foul pop

Andrew Browne had two hits and scored two runs

Leave a comment

Filed under Augusta, Somerset