Cape grad inducted into Biddeford Hall of Fame

USGS water gauge in Rehoboth Bay confirms there was a lot of rain last weekend
September 29, 2023

Story Location:
Biddeford City Hall
205 Main Street
Biddeford, ME 04005
United States

Long before parents had the ability to use social media to embarrass their kids with unnecessary posts and photos, the kids of local columnists were the subjects of those columns. My dad, David Flood, had a column for one of the newspapers he and my mom owned in Maine, which means my brother and I sometimes found ourselves in the pages.

Well, the tables have turned. Now I have the column and he’s stuck being the subject.

This past weekend, Sept. 23, my dad, a Cape Henlopen High School graduate, was one of five people inducted into the Biddeford Cultural and Heritage Center’s Hall of Fame in Biddeford, Maine. He was recognized for his work as a journalist and publisher of the Saco-Biddeford-Old Orchard Beach Courier, for having purchased and then renovated two old brick buildings downtown, for being a participant in many organizations, for being an elected official and for being a generally tireless supporter of the town over three decades.

My dad was genuinely appreciative of the recognition, and his comments after getting the plaque were short. Not surprisingly, the first thing he did was thank my mom, Carolyn, another Cape Henlopen High School graduate and also a Beebe Nursing School graduate, because he’s the first to say that none of his accomplishments were done alone.

Among my takeaways from his consistent community participation is that it made him seem like part of the community, not just a person who was always questioning everybody else’s decisions. For better or worse, that’s part of this job. Questions have to be asked – even if they’re awkward – to politicians, civic leaders, business owners and sometimes members of the general public. Covering events, or helping put on the events, helps temper the awkwardness, but inevitably, in small communities, you come across people you have to ask those awkward questions to. Sometimes, people recognize it’s part of the job and are still happy to see you. Sometimes, it’s still awkward. In either scenario, it’s better to be seen out and about.

A lot of water

Since I was in Maine last weekend, and I can’t be in two places at once, I didn’t participate in the Gazette’s coverage of Tropical Storm Ophelia. The good news – for everyone but me, because I like to think I’m irreplaceable; my wife has told me otherwise more than once – is that my colleagues blanketed the Cape Region from the Indian River Inlet to Broadkill Beach and took some great photos of the storm's nasty effects.

It can be wet and cold, but storm coverage is one of my favorite parts of this job. Unfortunately, because I wasn’t here, I don’t have any interesting stories about saving my camera from the water or driving my car through dangerously deep flood waters. However, I do have one bit of information that confirms there was a lot of water.

Dewey Beach resident Phil Winkler lives bayside. He told me years ago about a U.S. Geological Survey water-monitoring station near the head of Rehoboth Bay. He said any time that station registers a water level of 1 foot or higher, the town’s bayside has some level of flooding. 

A threshold can be set so that every time a certain level is reached, an email is sent. After being told about the 1-foot anecdote, I set that as the threshold for that monitoring station.

According to my work email’s inbox, since July 2018, I’ve received about 1,200 emails related to that gauge registering a water level above 1 foot. This past weekend, I got an email saying the gauge registered a height of 3.41 feet. As far as I can tell, that’s the third-highest level since I started monitoring the gauge. In October 2022, I got an alert saying the water was at 3.49 feet. In August 2018, I got an alert saying the water was at 4.88 feet. Water from the Mother’s Day Storm in May 2022 didn’t get as high as last weekend’s storm, but it did have three consecutive days above 3 feet (3.34, 3.35, 3.02), which is the longest consecutive stretch.

Joke of the Week

My parents recently gave my daughter Florence a book about animals. Included within the book are a few jokes. Florence told me I had to include one of them in this column. This is the one she chose. As always, send jokes to

Q: Why was the chicken thrown out of the baseball game?

A: Because the umpire suspected fowl play.


  • Chris Flood has lived in or visited family in Delaware his whole life. He grew up in Maine, but a block of scrapple was always in the freezer of his parents’ house during his childhood. Contact him at

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