to submit a blog to this page for your comments and feedback, or whatever contributions you think might add to the Van Buren overview.  It is NOT our intention to impose censorship on submissions, but as we are all too familiar with the uncontrolled rants that are rampant online these days, we do feel a responsibility to review them before publication, so please send your submissions via the 'Contact Us' link above.

[While you are welcome to freely speak your mind on any subject, all submissions will be monitored for appropriate language and content.  Those considered unacceptable for the generaL public (or such portions or phrases that are offensive or abusive) in the opinion of the Gopher editor will be deleted, and no personal attacks will be allowed.  Aged blogs no longer applicable or of continuing interest may also be purged from time to time without notice.]

The page will also be used for overflow from the Gopher, for editorials and feature articles too long for the printed version.



The following list of current blogs is in more or less chronological order; simply scroll down to view them:

  • The 'new' VB Gopher
  • We lost a beloved GO-Van Buren member
  • We used to be GREAT

The Gopher Grows Up

It may be some time before the Gopher again hits the streets, but when it does you will notice some changes long overdue.

From the beginning, emphasis has been on the positives of Van Buren (and yes, there are many) with the hopeful goal of fighting resident apathy and negativism.  In retrospect, however, we now recognize that approach as not particularly realistic.   Van Buren has problems, the same as every single other community across the face of the nation does; not facing them head on has been a mistake.  So expect to see presentations a bit different in the future.

The manner of distribution will also change.  Rather than parcel out batches to locations around town, as a practical, more cost-effective measure printed 'hard' copies will only be available to pick up outside the Gopher's home at 68 Main Street.  While that still gives non-computer folks access, we expect that relying more heavily on our online edition will give us more flexibility.

Not to worry; we'll still try to make the newsletter as informative and entertaining as before.  Just be patient, please .............

R.I.P. Theo Nykreim (d. 5/3/17)


Theodore P. Nykreim was born in Fox Creek, Wisconsin, on June 25, 1940.  He had two brothers, Charles and Kermit, and a sister Lavonne.  A widower for several years, he had 3 children Torbjorn (deceased), Thea and Guthorm, an adopted son Michael, and a stepdaughter Lauree Jean.  He also leaves his fiancee Valada Delaney, who lovingly cared for him during his final days.

Theo was graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in electrical engineering.  He served in the Marines as a Captain, pilot of C130s carrying supplies into Vietnam, and later worked for Boeing, where he and two others developed the 'skin' that covers airplanes still in use today.

He loved airplanes, books, and the Acadian culture, and was a staunch Republican.  He was active in many civic activites in the Van Buren Chamber of Commerce as well as GO-Van Buren, and served as a selectman in Stockholm.  A large man in stature, he was also 'larger than life' in personality -- strong minded, tending to arrogance, dedicated and driven, once described as 'using all the air when he enters the room' -- but soft-hearted, fun-loving and generous, too.

An internment service was held on May 19, 2017 at the Veterans Cemetery in Caribou, Maine, where there was standing room only in the pavilion.  Theo is sorely missed by all who had the privilege of knowing and working with him.

------------>>>> The above includes information from the Bangor Daily News obituary (5/13/17); the following are a couple of the postings following that obituary which would have been lost with a limited publication period.  Except for deleting contact information for the two posters, they are preserved here without editing.


We used to be GREAT!

What's happening to the United States?  When did we stop being great?  Is the statue of Lady Liberty in New York harbor crying?  Is it time to send this all-American icon, a gift from France, to the scrap-pile because she doesn't mean anything any more? 

We used to be so proud of our Statue of Liberty and all that she stood for, a MIGHTY WOMAN representing the very soul of our country.  But now she seems to be more of a sham than anything else, just standing there (probably bleeding inside) like she's outlived her time! 

Read the plaque from her base, and weep.

[submitted by a reader who chooses to remain anomymous]