Vulnerable church needs repairs
BAR HARBOR–Barbara Fenderson recalls attending Town Hill Federated Church decades ago with her former mother–in–law, and his eldest son has been christened in the Crooked Road building.
It’s been at least 15 years since the church had any sort of congregational or community activity inside, but Fenderson volunteers with the Town Hill Village Improvement Society to bring this 114-year-old building back to life. years.
The green and white shingles on the exterior have seen better days, and part of the pewter ceiling on the interior shows signs of a roof that has leaked for many years. Each wall in the building has at least one stained glass window, most of which are named after those who supported their installment. They provide a warm glow in the austere setting.
“It should be documented as a historic building,” said Diane Vreeland, who volunteers for Town Hill VIS. “They own the building and are responsible for maintenance of it.(Other properties supervised by the VIS are the city hill playground and the ball field next to it.)
A recent fundraising campaign funded repairs to the building’s roof, but the work must still be Finished outside. Inside, there are no more benches in the staging area, but a solid wood floor, as well as wooden window and door frames, suggest that it could be a community center again.
“We would like the community to let us know what their needs are because it belongs to everyone,” said Vreeland.
In 2006, the building was donated to Town Hill VIS by the last remaining member of the Ladies Aid Society, according to Vreeland. Prior to the transfer, members of the Ladies Aid Society looked after the building.
Years of dormancy have left the church vulnerable.
“These are old windows,” Fenderson said inside the building, showing off the classic stained–windows. “One of them has a bullet hole at the top.”
A few Bibles are always stored in space and the flags are hung next to it at the pulpit at the front where benches once lined the floor.
“I remember when kids used to put coins in there,” Fenderson said, pointing to a heated grill near the back of the room. When the furnace was removed from the basement, she imagines that there was probably an entire cache uncovered.
“He desperately needs a foundation,” said Vreeland, who couldn’t resist tugging the rope through the front door and making a cheerful noise. “The bell is in very good condition … There are a lot of people who care.”
VIS members are looking for these people to go out on May 1st 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. has a trunk and bake sale which will take place in their room, which is adjacent to the fire station on Route 102. There are already 20 vendors lined up to sell an assortment of goods, such as art, antiques and merchandise. -deck.
The are a handful of VIS members who depend on volunteers like Vreeland and Fenderson to help spread the word about church revitalization.
“All board members work; it’s tough, ”Vreeland said. “We desperately need the bodies and the money.”
To register as a vendor for the May 1 event or to donate items for sale, call (207) 288-1025.