Didn’t my new co-worker laugh when she was writing the cop log one day and came across a street in Freedom, Maine, called Goosepecker Ridge.

Molly, who landed here from Pennsylvania three months ago, has since been learning all sorts of things about central Maine and the state in general. She loves it here.

More recently, she discovered Grumpy Men Avenue in Anson — you can’t make this stuff up — and doubled over in laughter.

“IN ANSON, Friday at 10:32 a.m., a theft was reported on Grumpy Men Avenue,” the log says.

It’s true, we Mainers have a propensity for dreaming up crazy, quirky and peculiar street and road names.

I told Molly she hadn’t yet come across Sesame, Big Bird, Boo and Blah streets, in Skowhegan.

Sesame Street in Skowhegan is seen on Thursday. Morning Sentinel photo by Rich Abrahamson

Or Chicken Street in the town of Starks.

And, of course, there’s Katie Crotch Road in Embden where the road sign has been stolen many, many times, according to 89-year-old Eleanor Ketchum, the town’s E911 addressing officer. Ketchum told me a family with the last name “Cadie” lived on a corner of the road a very long time ago and over the years the name got twisted.

MRI Drive in Skowhegan is seen Thursday. Morning Sentinel photo by Rich Abrahamson

“That’s people for you,” Ketchum said. “Just like other things, one person mispronounces something just a little and next thing you know, somebody picked that up and away it goes.”

Somerset County has some of the most unusual names: Hole in the Wall Road in Athens; No Way, also in Athens; Shy Road in Palmyra; Rowdy Lane and Weed Lane in Burnham — do they smoke something there?; and Notta Road in Canaan.

Newport, in Penobscot County, has a Down Wind Boulevard. I wonder what it’s down wind of?

One street name that particularly caught my eye: Bactasanity Drive in Moscow, which is way up north, near Jackman. Madison, which has a Crazy Lane, must be in competition.

In Kennebec County, there’s Bumpy Road, Piggery Road, Stephen King Drive (there’s a plug for a horror writer) and White Rice Lane, all in Augusta.

The town of Greene has Welcome Hill Road, in contrast to Goah Way, That Way and This Way in Liberty.

Blah Street in Skowhegan is seen on Thursday. Morning Sentinel photo by Rich Abrahamson

There’s a Dirt Road in Albion and an Opportunity Way in Waterville, and in Oakland, a Godown Trail and Electric Avenue. And similarly, Embden has a Kilowatt Drive.

Gardiner is home to Dazzle Lane and Justa Way, Sidney boasts Mellow Hill and the town of Fayette, Our Road.

Thorndike, in Waldo County, has an eerie name — Coffin Road. I don’t think I’d want to live there.

There are some other places I’d avoid, including Harm’s Way in Belgrade, Dismal Drive in Monmouth and Dyer Straits in Palermo.

I hope there are detours around Hostile Valley Road in Palermo and Vipah Lane in Farmington. I wonder what neighbors do on that latter street, anyway?

Lois Lane in Skowhegan is seen Thursday. Morning Sentinel photo by Rich Abrahamson

Palermo also has a Boots and Saddle Road (now there’s a mouthful), and Fairfield’s got a Skat Street. Skat of what?

There are some odd ones in Franklin County, including Hernia Hill Road in Carrabassett Valley (is that because ascending it results in injury?); Rough Drive in Strong; Tilt of the Kilt Road in Rangeley; and Crash Road in Jay.

Though central Maine communities certainly seem to employ the creative spark when it comes to naming streets, I’ve decided Skowhegan takes the grand prize for frequency.

In addition to having Sesame, Big Bird, Boo and Blah streets, Skowhegan also is home to MRI Drive, White Chicken Road and Lois Lane.

And to think I grew up there. Truly, a town after my own heart.

Amy Calder has been a Morning Sentinel reporter 31 years. Her columns appear here Mondays. She may be reached at [email protected]. For previous Reporting Aside columns, go to centralmaine.com.


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