potato harvest

Jennifer Mitchell / Maine Public File

It was supposed to be a great year for Maine potatoes. Last year's harvest was strong, and this year should have seen about 3,000 new acres brought into production, but the sudden arrival of COVID-19 has changed all that.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

The school district that includes Presque Isle High School will reinstate its potato harvest break.

By David Sharp, The Associated Press

BLAINE, Maine - Many northern Maine high schools are empty just weeks after the arrival of students as teenagers trade warm classrooms for cold potato fields to haul in the fall harvest.

The region that's home to roughly 50,000 acres of potato fields is clinging to the harvest break tradition in which hundreds of teen farmhands help get the potatoes into storage.