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The Boston Globe


A feud as big as the great outdoors

Roxanne Quimby, the multimillionaire cofounder of Burt’s Bees, spent a fortune on more than 100,000 acres of Maine wilderness, only to alienate locals with her single-minded plan of creating a new National Park. Can her son repair the damage?

IT’S COLUMBUS DAY in the north Maine woods, which is kind of cheating. Everything looks like a fall-foliage postcard run through an Instagram filter. So let’s just acknowledge that at the moment I met Lucas St. Clair, I had been lulled into bliss by the last great wilderness in the eastern United States. And that’s not exactly the right frame of mind to begin determining whether he’s a visionary selling a dream of nature or a charmer hawking snake oil in easy-to-swallow capsules.

Lucas St. Clair is quite likable. He really is. That’s worth saying. He’s a tall 35-year-old with a beard and the polished warmth of a pilot on an intercom. I’ve yet to find anyone who would disagree with this, though there are people who disagree with every word that comes out of his mouth. Some of that is warranted. Much of it is because he’s Roxanne Quimby’s kid.

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