January 5, 2023

Rangeley Celebrates Winter

Fat-Tire Bike Racing in Rangeley
fat-tire-biking-maineThe 8th Annual Rangeley Fat Bike Loppet kicks off on Sunday morning, January 29, 2023, in Rangeley. The word “loppet” is of Norwegian origin and refers to a group race in the snow, usually on skis or bikes, over varied terrain. The event is part of the Maine Fat Bike Winter Series and will offer multiple races for both women and men, including eight-mile-long short courses and 16-mile age-ranked long courses. Visit the Rangeley Fat Bike Loppet for more information and to register for the race.

Rangeley’s Annual Winterpaloozah!
The 8th Annual Winterpaloozah! will be held in Rangeley on February 19, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Haley Pond Park. It’s an old-time Maine winter celebration centered on the frozen pond. Guests can look forward to horse & wagon rides, a Cardboard Sled Race, ice skating, saucer bowling, pond hockey, curling, snow golf, snow kiting, sledding, snow castle building, a campfire & marshmallow roast, hot chocolate, and much more aimed at families. Admission is free, but there are also pay-to-enter competitions, including a Dog Keg Pull, a Firewood Toss, and Buoy Ball, with prizes awarded. Visit the Rangeley Lakes site for details.

February Festival at Saddleback Mountain
The 2nd Annual February Festival at Saddleback Mountain will be held on Friday, February 24, 2023. Presented by the Skowhegan Savings Bank, it will include a Torchlight Parade and Live Music. The gathering is a full day of family-friendly events, including a bonfire and fireworks. Go to the February Festival for more details.

Carnaval ME

carnaval-me-logoThe 3rd annual Carnaval ME Winter Festival celebrates Maine as a State for All Seasons. This year, it’s occurring in the heart of Portland’s Old Port, at DiMillo’s on the Water on Commercial Street. Expect an enhanced focus on kid’s activities, thanks to partnerships with L.L.Bean, the Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine, Sub Zero Ice Carvings, and the Maine Academy of Modern Music. From March 8-12, 2023, Carnaval will offer favorite mascots, face painting, arts & crafts stations, and more. Each day will feature a full lineup of LIVE music, theater, comedy, and award-winning chefs and brewers’ pairings under a 400+ person illuminated igloo for Bites & Brews. Go to Carnaval ME for more details.

Camden Toboggan

toboggan-championshipsFor over three decades, daredevils have been racing down an iced-over, 400-foot-long wooden toboggan chute with a vertical incline of over 70 feet in Camden. The 32nd annual U.S. National Toboggan Championships will be held this year from February 3-5, 2023, at the Camden Snowbowl. Riders can reach up to 45 mph as they zip down the hillside onto Hosmer Pond. More than 400 teams will compete, and the event attracts a crowd of upwards of 5,000 people annually. Participants come from all over the country, and the competition is open to all competitors in two-, three-, and four-person teams. For information about how to register, visit www.camdensnowbowl.com.

Maine Winter Food Scene

tops’l-farmsMaine’s extraordinary food scene doesn’t take a wintertime break. Winter is the time to get out the cross-country skis, get a great workout, and head into the Oxbow Beer Garden in Oxford. The restaurant and taproom are in a renovated 200-year-old barn adjacent to an extensive Nordic skiing trail system, formerly known as Carter’s XC Ski. Oxbow specializes in wood-fired, naturally-leavened pizza featuring Maine grains and local, estate-grown toppings. Nordic skis, fat bikes, and snowshoes are available to rent on-site from the nonprofit organization Portland Gear Hub.

Pineland Farms has 5,000 acres of rolling fields in New Gloucester, ideal for cross-country skiing. It’s also famed for its Market, where you can buy produce from its sustainable farm, fresh baked good, Maine ground coffees, Maine craft beer and other items. Pineland has groomed Nordic ski trails, snowshoeing and fat tire biking, a huge sledding hill, and ice-skating rink, with rentals available.

It’s always lobster season in Maine, and one way to learn about the industry is at a unique interactive exhibit called Lobstering & the Maine Coast at The Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. It’s like to make anyone dream of eating one of those crustaceans, so afterward, head to J.R. Maxwell & Co for a fresh lobster roll, lobster salad, or their famous lobster stew.

Switzerland meets Maine in Waldoboro, where Tops’l Farm celebrates the season with Winter Raclette at lunch and dinner on Maine’s mid-coast. The festive meal starts with oysters and beverages, followed by Swiss raclette – a rich, melted cheese – served with bread and meats. The raclette experience is outdoors, regardless of weather, so dress warmly and cozy up to the bonfire.

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