A skier takes advantage of both the warm temperatures and man-made snow for an afternoon of Nordic skiing at Quarry Road Trails in Waterville on Tuesday. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Stephanie Kratsiosi works Tuesday at a picnic table along the banks of the Kennebec River in Hallowell. The New Hampshire saleswoman said discovering the outside dining venue for the Maine Local Market “is like finding a small patch of heaven in an uncertain world.” Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

John Harker prunes a tree Monday, Dec. 5, at Kents Hill Orchard at 1625 Main St. in Readfield. Harker says early winter is the ideal time to trim and clean up the 500 apple trees from which guests pick fruit each fall. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

State Rep. Travis Hasenfus, D-Readfield, plays with his son Grafton Hasenfus on the first day of the 131st Legislature on Wednesday at the Maine State House in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Former state Rep. Gerald Talbot cheers Wednesday at the Maine State House in Augusta as his daughter, Rachel Talbot Ross, D-Portland, is elected speaker of the House on the first day of the 131st Legislature. Ross became the first Black person to be House speaker.  Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Nick Menario and Matt Gendron, installers with Neokraft Signs of Lewiston, hang an exterior sign Wednesday to the Paul J. Schupf Art Center building in downtown Waterville. The center is scheduled to open Dec. 17. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

Ben Clark, left, Gordon Kenyon and Juan Lavelle-Rivera of the Kennebec Valley Chordsmen sing “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and other Christmas carols during the Unity Yuletide Celebration in Unity on Sunday, Dec. 4. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel

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