At a retirement celebration Saturday, March 25, at the Weld Town Hall State Senator Lisa Keim at left holds a sentiment from Gov. Janet Mills presented to Bruce and Dianna Farnham. Bruce served as Mt. Blue State Park manager for over 35 years while his wife Dianna worked wherever needed in the park. Submitted photo

WELD — Two long-term employees at Mt. Blue State Park have retired, leaving a void in the park and the wider community.

Bruce Farnham became the park manager in December, 1987, he said in a recent phone interview. Before that, he worked at Aroostook State Park for five years, then spent five years at Ferry Beach State Park, a small park near Old Orchard Beach, he noted.

The Park Service has not hired a replacement yet, is in the process now and will have somebody in place before the summer season starts, Farnham stated.

The Farnhams will be moving to Preque Isle. Dianna is from there, has some family there, Bruce said. “It’s where I met Dianna, we have a house there that we have maintained,” he noted.

When asked, Bruce said one of the toughest things he was involved with was developing the ATV multi-use trail in the park. “It was the first ATV trail on public land, was a challenge,” he stated. “There were a lot of hearings held on it. Right after that was the cutting controversy.” Those early challenges were some of the most unusual, he noted.

Being involved with the whole movement through the Tumbledown Conservation Alliance to purchase Tumbledown Mountain was one of the most rewarding things Bruce has been involved with. In the last few years since, he has been involved with developing a management plan and overseeing it, he noted.


Bruce said he is proud of having developed the winter programs at Mt. Blue State Park, including the ice rink, the ski trails and the Take It Outside Family Winter Fun Day.

All the friends made, living in Weld, the community, people met over the years – through work and being a member of the community – are the things Bruce said he will miss. He served on the town’s fire department for 31 years, was a first responder 25 years.

Bruce said his association with both the Weld and Carthage departments had been rewarding.

Bruce is looking forward to having a “little time to myself in the summer, doing some fishing, and camping.”

“I have seen one Fourth of July in the last 45 years,” he stated. “Relaxing, visiting with family” are eagerly anticipated, too.

A retirement celebration was held Saturday, March 25, for Bruce and Dianna Farnham who are leaving Mt. Blue State Park in Weld after more than 35 years of service. Pictured from left are neighbors Laurie Pratt, Dianna Farnham, Joanne Stinneford and Susan Fesenmaier. The four were walking buddies. Submitted photo

Dianna worked the gate at the Webb Beach section of the park and wherever else she was needed.

“Bruce and Dianna have been such an integral part of our beautiful town for over 35 years,” neighbor Laurie Pratt said. “Myself, Dianna, Joanne Stinneford and Susan Fesenmaier have been Center Hill friends for 35 years and we were walking buddies for years. We called ourselves “The Mountain Ladies”. We are going to miss Dianna and Bruce. Such great neighbors.”

“It’s a bittersweet moment,” Bruce said. “I am glad to be retiring, sad at leaving Weld and the friends we have met and made.”

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