Mainers celebrate Chinese New Year


Almost 1,000 people attended a Chinese New Year celebration at the Westbrook Performing Arts Center on Saturday.

The Chinese-American Friendship Association of Maine and the Confucius Institute at the University of Southern Maine hosted the event, where families enjoyed Chinese food, arts and crafts, and watched as students from the CAFAM Chinese school performed traditional Chinese dances.

"The purpose is to build a friendship between Chinese and Americans in this country," said Kwok Yeung, the President of CAFAM. "This is really terrific that we have a number of volunteers working with children and parents to bring this together. Making costumes, rehearsals, there's a lot of work that went behind it."

2016 is the Year of the Monkey.

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Westbrook officials educate public on active shooter response

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The city of Westbrook wants people to be ready in case there's ever an active shooter or a similar violent act. Officials held a meeting Thursday night to show people what to do.

The police chief, fire chief, and school superintendent were there. Their goal was to show members of the community they're working together to protect people from acts of violence.

They also want ordinary people to know what they can do, which is, they say, to be alert and in the event of an active shooter, to "run, hide and fight."

"Where are my escape routes? Being aware of people's mannerisms and behavior, and looking specifically at mannerisms, behavior and actions, and not at race and religion and ethnicity," Police Chief Janine Roberts said.

Westbrook police find missing teen girl

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Westbrook Police Department found a missing teenage girl safe early Thursday morning.

Police said 16-year-old Audrey McDermott had last seen on Andover Road in Westbrook at approximately 5 p.m. Wednesday. Officials were concerned McDermott may have been in a mental crisis state.

Police said they did not know if McDermott was on foot or was picked up by a vehicle.

Circumstances surrounding her disappearance have not been released.

Kittens took over Congress Square park on Wednesday

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland and Dextrous Creative with help from Friends of Congress Square group hosted a kitten therapy Wednesday, September 9 at 11 a.m., where park goers took a break from their busy day to relax and play in a box of bouncing kittens.

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Police: Information wanted regarding Westbrook Middle School vandalism

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- According to Westbrook police sometime overnight on Friday, August 29 and into Saturday morning someone vandalized Westbrook Middle School on Stroudwater Street.

Police say the building's walls, sidewalks and windows were spray painted. According to police the damages could cost up $2,000.

Now Westbrook police is asking for the public's help in identifying whoever is responsible. If you have any information about this incident you are urged to call Public Safety Dispatch at: 854-0644. 

Sappi Fine Paper explains plans for Westbrook fish passage

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The dam at Saccarappa Falls in Westbrook could soon be gone. Sappi Fine Paper, which operates the dam, is looking into two plans that call for its removal, because the company wants to give up the hydroelectric facility.

The paper company held a public hearing Wednesday night to explain the two options to residents.

People in the community see this as an opportunity to restore the fish population on the river. Many of them also see it as a chance to keep building up recreation on the river, which the city has been focusing on in recent years.

Rob Mitchell, president of the Westbrook River Park group, has been pushing for a whitewater kayaking park near Saccarappa Falls in Westbrook for years. Now, he believes it's closer than ever to becoming a reality.

Westbrook Police investigating car burglaries

WESTBROOK, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- There's been a string of car burglaries in the area of Longfellow Street, Madison Street and Anne Terrace, according to Westbrook Police. 

Police said the cars were unlocked, allowing for easy access. 

Police remind residents to lock their cars and keep valuables out of view.