Brandon Yeaton, Matt Ripley, winners of Annual Lobster Trap Tree Raffle

What’s it going to be, the traps or the cash?

Lobster Trap Tree to be dismantled in the coming days
Thu, 01/03/2019 - 2:00pm

ROCKLAND— With 50 brand new traps made from Brooks Trap Mill or $2,250 cash riding on the winning ticket, two random names were pulled out of a bag at noon on Wednesday, Jan. 3 for the Lobster Trap Tree Raffle drawing.

A total of 250 tickets were sold this year with one ticket given away to promote the downtown effort, and so, according to the Raffle’s custom, there are always two winners.

Gordon Page, Executive Director of Rockland Main Street, Inc., announced that Brandon Yeaton, of Cushing, chose the 50 traps and Matt Ripley, of South Thomaston, took the $2,250 cash.

It takes Brooks Trap Mill approximately 155 traps worth $3,500 for the whole tree to be put together. “Every year for the last eight or so years, we’ve tweaked the design of the Lobster Trap Tree just a bit,” said Page. This past November, when volunteers built the Lobster Trap Tree, they braved a brutally cold couple of days with gusting winds. See our related story below.

“It’ll only take a few hours to take down,” said Page, who added that a man lift from Journey’s End Marina assists with the dismantling. “It’s a lot faster coming down than going up.” The giant lobster at the top belongs to the Liberty family of Trade Winds Motor Inn, who loans it to Rockland Main Street, Inc. every year. “When he’s not on our Lobster Trap Tree, that lobster lives on top of the Trade Winds 10 months out of the years,” said Page. And all of the buoy “ornaments” on the tree are donated from lobster fishermen and go right back into storage until next winter.

Yeaton will be able to take ownership of the traps after the tree has been dismantled and returned to Brooks Trap Mill in Thomaston. The traps will be stored there until he can pick them up. Each one, according to owner, Steve Brooks, is made brand new, for the purpose of the tree.

As one of Rockland Main Street Inc.’s largest fundraising events, a number of area businesses served as the ticket sales outlets. The Festival of Lights, a production of Rockland Main Street, Inc., is the organization responsible for the construction of the Lobster Trap Christmas Tree overlooking the waterfront at Mildred Merrill Park, and the annual Lobster Trap Raffle. Sponsors for this year’s drawing included: Brooks Trap Mill, Camden National Bank, Hamilton Marine, First National Bank, Rockland Savings Bank, Bar Harbor Bank & Trust, Archipelago, and Grasshopper Shop of Rockland.

Kay Stephens can be reached at