June 5, 2024

Dawnland Festival of Arts & Ideas

The Abbe Museum in Bar Harbor is presenting the first Dawnland Festival of Arts & Ideas from July 12-14, 2024, at the College of the Atlantic (COA). This unique multi-day event is an evolution of the famous Abbe Museum Indian Market (AMIM) and Native American Festival that featured invitation-only Native arts markets and performances. The Dawnland Festival of Arts & Ideas includes those elements but will also spotlight conversations by Wabanaki and other Indigenous leaders on some of the biggest questions of our time, including climate, democracy, and food systems. The Festival will be free to the public and is being supported by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Maine Office of Tourism, along with a partnership with College of the Atlantic. Speakers include attorney and author Sherri Mitchell (Penobscot), James Beard Award-winning Chef Sherry Pocknett (Mashpee Wampanoag), and Native rights attorney Michael-Corey F. Hinton (Passamaquoddy). Musician Firefly the Hybrid (Penobscot) will also perform and more than 50 leading Native American artists from across the U.S. and Canada will share artwork ranging from ash baskets, beadwork, textiles, painting, fashion, and pottery representing the breadth and excellence of Indigenous art. Visit Dawnland Festival.

National Monument Contact Station

There is a striking new contact station opening soon to welcome visitors to Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. The Tekαkαpimək Contact Station, a Penobscot words that means “as far as one can see,” is a notable structure designed in collaboration by Elliotsville Foundation, representatives of the Wabanaki Nations, Saunders Architecture, Reed Hilderbrand Landscape Architecture, WeShouldDoItAll, Tuhura Communications, Erin Hutton Projects, and the National Park Service, the building is not only visually beautiful but a model for modern, sustainable architecture. Design features include the use of on-site landscaping material as well as off-grid and mainly passive utilities, including solar, shading, ventilation, radiant floor heat, and thermal mass Trombe walls. The building is a gift to the U.S. National Park Service. Maine Audubon has assured that the building’s windows are also bird-safe. Learn more here.

Summer Theater

Maine has a bevy of classic summer theaters, historic venues that have delighted visitors for many years. Deertrees Theatre in Harrison was founded in 1936, while The Ogunquit Playhouse is one of the last theaters that were a part of the Straw Hat Circuit, the original New England theaters where summer stock began. The Hackmatack Playhouse in Berwick, the Theater at Monmouth, and the State Music Theater in Brunswick are also venerable stages and offer Broadway-style shows. Check out the Boothbay Opera House and the century-old Lakewood Theater in Madison, the country’s longest-running summer theater. Go to Visit Maine for more details.

Open Farm Day

Nezinscot-farm-turner-maineMaine Open Farm Day offers an inside look into some of the state’s most beloved family farms which open to the public every year. This year’s date is July 28, 2024, and dozens of farms across the state will be participating. They include Black Acres Farm in Wilton, Cape Newagen Alpaca Farm in Southport, Canty Cow Creamery in Turner, Ewe and I Farm in Kennebunkport, and Ten Apple Farm in Gray. It’s a great family event designed to give a glimpse into farm life, to learn about where your food comes from and how it’s produced, and to buy products. The event is free and sponsored by Real Maine, a Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry program that connects people with Maine farmers and food producers. Visit Open Farm Day for details.

Wild Blueberry Weekend

Maine Wild Blueberry Weekend is coming August 3-4, 2024. The lowbush wild blueberry is one of only a few fruits native to North America and thrives in the thin glacial soils and northern climate of Maine. This event invites visitors to tour some of the state’s wild blueberry farms, pick and taste wild blueberries at various locations, and try a wild blueberry dish or drink. Participating farms include Bee Chill Farm in Rockport, Smithereen Farm in Pembroke, and Welch Farm in Roque Bluffs. Nearly two dozen restaurants, wineries, and breweries will be participating statewide. For details, visit Maine Wild Blueberry Weekend.

Rockport Harbor Hotel

The Rockport Harbor Hotel quietly opened in December 2023, a 20-room boutique hotel now ready for its first summer. This luxury property on Rockport’s main street has traditional guestrooms with marble bathrooms, gas fireplaces, and balconies with views of the harbor or the Camden Hills. The Oak Room restaurant offers casual fare from Chef Travis Nestor, while Atrium, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant with views of the harbor and Penobscot Bay, will open soon on the hotel’s fourth floor. Reservations at The Rockport Harbor Hotel.

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