Tradition may rule here in Northern New England, but the big news for outdoor lovers is that the glamping experience has come to Maine’s state parks. Lobster-lovers can plan a trip around the Maine Lobster Festival and those who want to dig deeper into Maine’s notable art traditions can head to Ogunquit. An enhanced online trail finder makes getting off the beaten path that much easier. A music festival and the state’s two biggest agricultural fairs are on the horizon this fall, so now would be a good time to mark the calendar. For writers, editors and bloggers looking for short-lead news, you’ll find immediate details under Happening Now. Those in search of longer lead news can scroll down to the Looking Ahead section.
Glamping Comes to Maine State Parks
Glamping has arrived at select Maine state parks this summer. A company called Tentrr is offering canvas-wall tents with queen-size bunk beds and wood stoves, along with a fire pit, a picnic table, benches, Adirondack chairs and a Coleman sun shower. The first one opened at Bradbury Mountain and others have just opened at Rangeley Lake, Camden Hills, Mount Blue, Lamoine, Peaks-Kenny, and Warren Island. These glamping sites supplement existing campsites within the parks. The move marks the first such partnership by a state to add fully stocked glamping huts inside designated camp areas. The sites can be reserved for $100 per night. Go to Tentrr.com to book a stay.
Maine Lobster Festival
The Maine Lobster Festival runs from July 31 to August 4 in Rockland Maine, a five-day celebration where more than 25,000 pounds of lobsters are served each year. This year marks the 72nd annual nonprofit festival and highlights include the Great International Lobster Crate Race, Maine Sea Goddess Pageant & Coronation, Seafood Cooking Contest and The Big Parade. Around 30,000 people attend the festival each year over the five days and the festival is run by more than 1,300 volunteers from the community and “from away.” Proceeds are distributed to groups, charities and organizations throughout the Rockland area. Visit the Maine Lobster Festival for more information.
The View from Narrow Cove at the Ogunquit Museum of American Art
The Ogunquit Museum of American Art opened its 66th exhibition season with “The View from Narrow Cove,” with selections from the collection that bring into view Ogunquit’s remarkable influence as a major art colony during a decisive period in American art history. During the early decades of the 20th century, American artists established their own creative communities while actively resisting academic and aesthetic traditions, which came to define American Modernism. Today, the view from Narrow Cove and the history associated with the Ogunquit art colony continue to compel artists, connoisseurs, and sightseers to the seacoast. The work of early painters such as Charles Woodbury and Hamilton Easter Field is shown alongside works by artists such as Marsden Hartley, Walt Kuhn, John Marin, Rockwell Kent and Will Barnet. The exhibit runs through October 31. Visit the Ogunquit Museum for more information.
American Folk Festival
Set along the Bangor waterfront and running from August 23 through 25, the American Folk Festival is a celebration of multi-cultural traditional arts, including music, dance, crafts, food and storytelling. This year’s musical lineup features The Campbell Brothers, Los Straitjackets, Cimarron, The Fitzgeralds, Les Tireux D’Roches and others. It’s a cross section of folk traditions from across the Americas. The Festival also offers traditional craft demonstrations and exhibits, a children’s area, and dozens of food vendors with ethnic food and regional specialties. Visit American Folk Festival for more info.
Maine Trail Finder for Summer Hikes
Setting out for a hike this summer? Go to the website of Maine Trail Finder, which has details on hundreds of non-motorized trails throughout the state. This free interactive mapping site aims to help Maine residents and visitors find hiking, walking, snowshoeing, mountain biking, cross-country skiing and paddling trails across the state. They include lesser known reserves, parks and preserves, as well as some of the most famous peaks and trails in the state. Trail maps, directions and user comments are included. Go to Maine Trail Finder for more information.
The Fryeburg Fair and The Common Ground Country Fair
Maine’s county fairs are the purest expression of the agricultural traditions and lifestyles found across the state. The Fryeburg Fair, which runs from September 29 to October 6, is a classic county fair with team-pulling, 4H awards and the ever popular pig scramble. Fryeburg offers a sizeable midway with classic carnival rides, as well as harness racing. Sheep dog trials and tractor pulling are among the highlights of this fair that dates back to 1851, Maine’s largest, which attracts more than 170,000 visitors during its run. The Common Ground Country Fair, from September 20-22 in Unity, got its start during the back-to-the-land movement in 1977. Affiliated with the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, the focus is on organic farming techniques and living, with a showcase for rural crafts. More than 60,000 visitors a year come for the draft horse show and sheep dog trials, demos of spinning and carding wool, stonework, tree identification and workshops on raising animals.
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