Brewster House Bed & Breakfast (Freeport, Maine Coast)

Category Archives: christmas shopping

CHRISTMAS IN FREEPORT

October 16, 2014 by Scott Gile

Sitting on our sofa, looking out at the half-naked maples, it’s clear that Black Thursday and Christmas in Freeport are not far down the calendar road! If that wasn’t enough, the near freezing temperatures and the annual Sunday River Fall Festival are serious indicators!

 

A little research quickly reveals that the upcoming season presents some special seasonal opportunities in both Portland and Bath, as well!   Emerging as a promising early newcomer in this arena is The Early Bird Sale (created by Reny’s). The idea is to offer BIG DISCOUNTS ahead of Black Thursday on the first Saturday of November (11/1), to give you an earlier reason treat yourselves to Brewster House, while you reward your “up & out” spirit with DEEP Christmas savings.   Many local merchants (as well as in Bath & Portland) will offer a structured set of storewide savings of 40% off at 6AM, 30% at 7AM reducing to 20% at 8AM!! As I speak, we have 2 rooms that just opened up that weekend from a cancellation!! They won’t last!

 

What can we say about Black Friday?? Respecting our family desire to enjoy the special opportunity to enjoy each other on Thanksgiving, we will not be open to guests until the Friday after, 11/28. Hey, great opportunity to jump on the early Downeaster train and relax! It leaves North Station (Boston) @ 9:05AM and gets into Freeport just after noon on Friday.  http://www.amtrakdowneaster.com/sites/default/files/schedule-10-06-2014.pdf! Small Business Saturday is huge for our fellow shopkeepers locally, here, in Bath and Portland too, so please consider the unique products and personal service they offer you this Holiday Season, and patronize them!!

 

Columns, blossoms and a christmas tree of led lights on display

Christmas light display by LL Bean

The huge annual Sparkle Weekend http://sparklecelebration.com, will take place starting on Friday December 5th, with a 6PM Parade of Lights on the LL Bean campus, be will be dazzling all on Saturday and Sunday evenings as well.  If you’ve not seen it in the past, the display is really amazing!! Santa will be visiting from 6:30 to 8PM. Moving into the weekend, don’t forget the Sparkle Express Downeaster Train Adventure, Old Fashioned Horse Drawn Wagon Rides, Tuba Concert on Saturday, and Jingle Bell Run/Walk on Sunday morning (to benefit Arthritis). Throughout the weekend, LL Bean will also be offering all sorts of Winter sports activities, such as skiing, sledding, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing!!  Leave those TV’s and computers home!!

 

December 9th & 10th bring the Festival of Trees to our favorite museum, the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. There will be a Candy Cane Train from the Bath Station to Wiscasset and back, including Santa & his Elves on December 13th & 14th at 9AM, 11AM, 1PM & 3PM. Although they’ve not yet issued a date, they are organizing an evening of caroling from a trolley.  Take in the stunning vista of Christmas dressed 200 year old downtown Bath! For updates, see http://visitbath.com/old-fashioned-christmas/ for details!

Shop window & snowy night sidewalk in front of pretty Christmas dressed shop window

Bath shop windows dressed up for Christmas

 

You would think Portland (with it’s fine restaurants & long interesting waterfront) would do it up for Christmas, but their event schedule seems a bit understated… Their website starts with the Annual Christmas Tree Lighting on Saturday 11/29 @ 5:30PM, including entertainment by Rich Charette and the Bubblegum Band. Wow, huh??  Shop for a Cause day occurs the following day, wherein a portion of the proceeds go to local charities.  On Thursday, 12/11, 5-10PM the 12th Anniversary Merry Madness (or Shop Till You Drop) will happen in the City. Horse & wagon rides will be offered on Saturday and Sunday afternoons during Holiday Season, from Monument Square on the ½ hour. Finally, artist Pandora LaCasse will create a standing display of radiant holiday light sculptures throughout downtown from December through February. For updates and more information, see http//www.portlandmaine.com/cornerstone-events/.

 

We still have a room available for Sparkle Weekend and more availability for the weekends on either side of December 6th!!  Stumped about what to get for a gift for that loved one who has plenty of stuff?? Buy them a good time, a gift certificate for a fabulous Brewster House Escape!! They’re available on our website, or feel free to call and we’ll get that to you quickly.

 

 

 

 

BAH-GUN WEEKEND & HAPPI NEW YEAH’S!!

November 10, 2013 by Scott Gile

Scott & Mary
Brewster House Bed & Breakfast, Freeport, Maine

BAH-GUN WEEKEND
Friends of Brewster, our suggestion is to save your Christmas money (and any gifts you can put off) and come to Freeport for the weekend after  Christmas to take advantage of all the over-stocking mistakes the retailers represented here made!!  Not only do you get to take advantage of LL Bean & neighbors, but Brewster House has our own BAH-GUN for you!! 
Arrive on Thursday 12/26, or Friday 12/27 and we’ll offer you 3 days here for the price of just 2!  Not only that, we’ll throw in your choice of a Mimosa or Proscecco cocktail with your breakfast on Sunday ON US!!  We’ll even handle the recycling from all of your buying victories, and provide you with a 50 gallon bag for your gifts (like Santa’s, but polyethylene) and help you wrestle that beast to your car!
HAPPI NEW YEAHS -2014!!
Hey, the Wednesday Christmas/ New Yeahs weekday makes this Holiday a bit challenging for we celebrants.  If you are among the fortunate (or committed to partying) who will go away, consider coming to Brewster House on Tuesday, 12/31!  We have OUTSTANDING DINING OPTIONS, both here and in Portland!!  LL Bean is sponsoring fireworks on New Year’s Eve.  See this link for all of the WILD goings on in Portland!  http://www.newyearsportlandmaine.com.  We’ll not only welcome you with a bottle of sparkly, but will help with “hair of the dog” at Mary’s always elegant breakfast with your choice of a mimosa or Prosecco cocktail. 

And as a tease, this was the “fruit” offering w/ breakfast a few days ago……Mary called this vanilla pannacotta w/ strawberries.  Seems to me something like “life-altering creamy slathering love-bomb of strawberries” might be more accurately descriptive!!

Three Wonderful Days in Freeport!

October 16, 2012 by Scott Gile

Recently several guests have stayed with us and visited Freeport for the first time. They have all had similar reactions. The first reaction is “Wow! We didn’t know there was so much Freeport shopping!” You see, not being from the northern New England area, they were unfamiliar with Freeport, and many had no idea that it was the home of L.L. Bean.

The second reaction, for all of them, was, “We had no idea there was so much to do within a short drive of Freeport! What a great location to base our stay, so we can take day trips to see lighthouses, visit lobster shacks, beaches, etc.” They had no idea what a perfect location Freeport is for sightseeing.

We’ve decided to make Freeport a little more accessible for our guests by setting up our Fall Freedom package, with 3 nights for the price of 2! This provides the ideal opportunity to see the rugged Maine coast, visit lighthouses (there are at least a dozen within about an hour and a half drive of us), hike along the water or in the hills in our state parks, and more. Or, if you prefer, take a hike through Freeport and visit the 5 L.L. Bean stores (four of them never close!) and over 150 other shops and restaurants, all within a few blocks of us!

With three days here, you can really cover a lot of ground. Here is our suggestion:

Day 1 (arrival)

  • Arrive by mid-afternoon and check-in at Brewster House
  • Spend the afternoon exploring Freeport outlets and shops
  • Have a wonderful meal at one of Freeport’s excellent restaurants

Day 2

  • Have a delicious gourmet breakfast at Brewster House
  • Go north to visit lighthouses, islands and beaches
  • Have lunch at an historic and authentic Maine diner
  • Spend the afternoon exploring coastal harbor towns
  • Dine along the way, or in Freeport
  • Shop a bit before the end of the day

Day 3

  • Another delicious breakfast at Brewster House
  • Shop a bit to make sure you haven’t missed anything
  • Drive to the south to see lighthouses
  • Explore Portland’s Old Port district
  • Explore Kennebunkport and/or Kittery and/or Ogunquit, etc.

Day 4 (departure)

  • One last delicious Brewster House breakfast
  • One last shopping trip before checking out.
  • Bid goodbye to your new friends, and promise to return soon!

When will we see you here?

Ruth & Scott
Brewster House Bed & Breakfast, Freeport, Maine

What a great time to be in Freeport!

November 29, 2011 by Scott Gile

What a beautiful time of year to be in Freeport! The leaves have fallen, we’ve seen a couple of snowfalls (though they’ve since melted), and the crowds of summer vacationers and shoppers have gone back to school, jobs, etc.

It’s time for us to put away the fall decorations and begin decorating the house for Christmas. The carols are playing in the house, and the dining room, entryway and living room, as well as the guest rooms, themselves, take on a festive air.

This is the time when our “old friends” — the guests who come back frequently, or even annually — come to Brewster House. They’ve seen the beauty of the Maine coast in summer many times, so they don’t mind if the weather isn’t perfect. They’ve visited most of the lighthouses and lobster shacks, so they don’t mind having their lobster at one of the fine Freeport restaurants instead of along the water.

These guests are here to relax, do a bit of Christmas shopping, and remember the good times they’ve enjoyed here over the years, and maybe take in a bit of the L.L. Bean Northern Lights Celebration (through New Years’ Eve).

We always look forward to these return visits – it’s a bit like having your extended family visit – whether they’re here to visit their own family, do a bit of shopping, or just looking for a bit of relaxation before the holidays.

We hope to see you here!

Do You Sparkle? Will You Sparkle in Freeport?

October 25, 2011 by Scott Gile

Sparkle? What is Sparkle? More specifically, what is Sparkle in Freeport and why would I want to do it?

Sparkle weekend in Freeport, Maine is traditionally the first weekend in December each year, and marks the kickoff of the Christmas season with a Parade of Lights, Talking Chrismas Tree, Tuba Concert, and many other favorites. This year it is December 2-3, 2011, with the Jingle Bell Run taking place on Main Street on December 4.

Sparkle follows close on the heels of our Moonlight Madness even on the Friday after Thanksgiving, November 25, where you can shop in Freeport’s outlets in the wee hours of the morning.

All of this activity takes place throughout Freeport Village, while L.L. Bean is simultaneously hosting their Northern Lights Celebration so there is plenty to do for the entire family.

There’s a lot going on in Freeport in the coming weeks! Be sure to check our availability calendar to see when you would like to book your room!

New: Gift Certificates Now Available from our Facebook Page

December 22, 2010 by Scott Gile

We’ve offered Brewster House Gift Certificates through our web site for several years, and each year (especially near the Christmas holidays) several people take advantage of them as gifts for their friends and family who love Brewster House, or to introduce them to Brewster House and Freeport, Maine.

We recently became aware of an application that we could add to our Facebook page that will allow Facebook friends to purchase our Gift Certificates directly from Facebook.

To use the Gift Certificate application, select the quantity you want (the base value is US $100.00, selecting multiples simply increases the value of your gift certificate, so if you enter “3” you will be purchasing a gift certificate with a value of $300), then proceed to check out. Your payment will be processed through PayPal’s secure checkout service, and we are notified of the purchase so we can send you your gift certificate.

Be sure to include your mailing address so we can send the certificate, and also please provide a valid email address, so we can reach you if there are any problems. These will be sent free to addresses in the US and Canada. Other areas will be by arrangement.

We wish this had been available earlier in the Christmas season, but better late than never!

Thirty Shopping Days ’til …

November 17, 2009 by Scott Gile

Brewster House at ChristmasFor most Americans the thirty days (or thereabouts) between Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day are the days we are subjected to constant advertising for holiday gifts and the countdown of the number of shopping days until Christmas.

As an aside – for those too young to recall – we used to count shopping days instead of simply the number of days remaining because most stores were not open 7 days a week. Hence the number of shopping days was less than the number of days by an amount equal to the number of Sundays in that time frame.

Since those familiar with Freeport already know what a shopping Mecca it is, it will come as no surprise that there is a lot going on in town during those 30 days!

Shop, Dine & Stay
Throughout most of that time (Now through December 19, 2009) Brewster House Bed & Breakfast is offering its Shop, Dine & Stay package, with two nights double-occupancy in a queen room, an L.L. Bean gift card, a gift certificate at Azure Cafe, for only $499 (taxes included), and the ability to add a third night for only $100.

Moonlight Madness
In addition, Freeport’s Moonlight Madness event begins in the wee hours of Friday morning, November 27, with many stores open, special events, sales, etc. This is traditionally the biggest shopping day of the year, and only Freeport can do it all up with L.L. Bean’s stores, and other shops and restaurants.

Sparkle
A week later is Sparkle weekend in Freeport. An entire weekend of holiday fun for the whole family! The weekend begins with a parade of lights down beautiful Main St., decorated to look like a scene from a Christmas card. The celebration will include a tuba concert, jingle bell run, craft fair, hot cocoa stops, talking Christmas tree, Wally the Green Monster, and of course… SANTA!!!

Northern Lights Celebration
From November 20 through New Years Eve is L.L. Bean’s Northern Lights Celebration. It begins with the lighting of the giant Christmas tree, and includes book signings, demonstrations, ice carving and special events, leading up to a huge New Years celebration for the entire family.

Shopping, Shopping, Shopping
Freeport’s over 170 shops and restaurants will be open with values galore, throughout the holiday time, and with the new stores in Freeport Village Station adding to the mix, there is truly something for everyone on your Christmas shopping list.

Of course, if you’re not busy shopping for holiday gifts, and can wait… there are the after-Christmas sales. Like most places there are sales in Freeport after Christmas. However, after New Years there are even more, and then in late January and February, still more!! But that’s a closely guarded secret, so we better not say too much about that!

After the Foliage in Freeport

October 27, 2009 by Scott Gile

While there is still good color in places (our back yard being a prime example), many of the trees have lost most of their leaves. As you drive US-1 or I-295 either north or south, there are still some pockets of trees with spectacular colors, many have faded and the leaf drop is significant (helped along, no doubt, by a wind and rain storm a few days ago).

So, now what?

Things don’t stand still in Freeport, Maine.

As we mentioned in a previous post, the State of Maine Tourism Office is kicking off a program called “Shop, Dine and Stay”, promoting various activities leading up to the holiday season. We have created a “Shop, Dine and Stay” special for that purpose. The program highlights the late-fall and early-winter activities and the pre-holiday shopping opportunities in Maine (and especially in Freeport!).

Shopping Opportunity is Knocking!

As thoughts turn to the holidays, the November weather provides nice opportunities for some low-key sightseeing along the nearby coast, as well as early Christmas shopping in Freeport’s nearly 200 shops and restaurants (including, of course, L.L. Bean’s 5 stores – four of which are open 24×7!).

Yesterday we took a walk through town, stopping in many of the shops, both those along Main street in the historic buildings, and also in the new (in 2009) Freeport Village Station. We found plenty of bargains already available.

Many shops are advertising sales from 25-50% off, and we saw some that were as much as 70% off! In addition, there were some one day only sales with markdowns as high as 50-75% off, and some buy one – get one (BOGO) (or even buy one, get two) sales.

All of this is just in time for the Freeport Girlfriends Getaway weekend, November 13-15.

A Thanksgiving Getaway?

Over the Thanksgiving holidays (November 26-29 in the United States) there are some great opportunities. As usual, the Maine Dining Room at the Harraseeket Inn is having its all-you-can-eat buffet Thanksgiving Dinner (reservations required). Also, a number of the Freeport merchants will participate in the Moonlight Madness event again this year, with doors opening at (or after) midnight, in the wee hours of Friday morning, November 27.

Do You Sparkle?

Thanksgiving weekend also kicks of the traditional Christmas shopping season and the lighting decorations and Christmas trees will all be out for Sparkle Weekend, December 4-6. Activities include a parade of lights down beautiful Main St., decorated to look like a scene from a Christmas card, a tuba concert, jingle bell run, craft fair, hot cocoa stops, talking Christmas tree, and of course… Santa!

Get ready for the holiday season! Come to Freeport, Maine and Shop, Dine and Stay!

After Autumn, then what?

October 1, 2009 by Scott Gile

Winter - Portland Head LighthouseOften guests express surprise when we tell them that we, like most B&B’s (at least in the southern half of Maine) are open year ’round.

The natural assumption is that our season from November through April is fueled by either skiing or shopping. In Freeport, of course, shopping is always available, with the five L.L. Bean stores (four of which are open 24-hours a day, 365 days each year), and over 160 other shops and restaurants, most located in historic buildings, and almost all within a few blocks walk.

Downhill skiing is a bit trickier, though there are plenty of places for cross-country or for snowshoeing in the area. Probably the nearest downhill ski area is in Camden, about 90 minutes up US-1, with real mountain ski slopes about 2 hrs away in the western part of Maine.

So what is there to do (in addition to the shopping) between November and April? Plenty!

November:

Freeport’s Girlfriend Getaway is November 13-15, with special lodging packages and activities. L.L. Bean’s Northern Lights celebration begins November 20, running through New Years’ Day. This includes the huge L.L. Bean Christmas Tree, carriage rides, and activities throughout Freeport.

Thanksgiving weekend (November 26-29) starts the “offical” Christmas shopping season with an all-you-can eat buffet at the Maine Dining Room in the Harraseeket Inn, Christmas decorations, and more. Moonlight Madness shopping begins at midnight on November 27.

December:

December starts with Sparkle Weekend in Freeport – always the first weekend in December, and filled with winter fun! There is a Christmas parade, with Santa arriving on a lobster boat, a talking Christmas tree, a tuba concert of seasonal favorites, the Freeport Community Players present “Radio IV”, a long-time favorite drama, and there are sales and other events to charm every visitor.

New Year’s Eve is traditionally a magical time at L.L. Bean in Freeport, with entertainment for the whole family, storytellers and music, and a midnight fireworks display.

And, of course, with all the magnificent shopping in Freeport, there is something for every budget and every taste in the stores and shops, both before Christmas, and with the after-Christmas sales.

January:

If you think you’ve seen good after-Christmas sales, wait until you visit Freeport in January (and even into February). We’ve seen unbelievable markdowns as merchants clear the way for the next season’s merchandise.

January, with its snows and often clear days, makes a wonderful time to visit some of your favorite lighthouses, and get those rare photos of them with a dusting of snow on the rocks around them.

February:

Like January, February brings sales to town, and of course, special opportunities for short breaks and getaways with Presidents’ Day weekend, Valentines Day, and more late-season sales.

The lighthouses and coastal scenes are still beautiful, with wind, water, waves and snow.

March:

In March the snow begins to melt and the first signs of Spring appear. It can still be a great time for seeing the new growth around the coastal areas and lighthouses, but it is also a good time for some early-season shopping.

April:

Like March, April can have some wonderful photo opportunities with new foliage and flowers appearing, melting snows, and beautiful, rugged, coastlines.

April is also the month for Flavors of Freeport, a wonderful food-inspired event, with all kinds of activities to enjoy.

So, yes, there is life after autumn in Freeport! Try one of our beautiful off-season months and enjoy off-season room rates, specials and activities!

Sparkle With Us In Freeport, December 2009

September 15, 2009 by Scott Gile

Brewster House B&B with Christmas lightsIt seems too early in the year to be thinking about Christmas, but we’re well into September, and for those making plans for early December, it is already time to begin thinking about Freeport’s 16th annual Sparkle Weekend.

This year Sparkle is December 4, 5 and 6. Typically the weekend includes L.L. Bean’s Northern Lights celebration nightly (from November 20 – January 1), horsedrawn wagon rides, hot cocoa, an open house and tour of Freeport’s historic bed and breakfast inns, a talking Christmas tree, a parade (with Santa arriving in a lobster boat!), visits with Santa, Freeport Community Players’ Old Time Radio Show, a Jingle Bell fun run, a craft fair, a tuba concert, and more!

In 2008 L.L. Bean displayed the largest Christmas tree east of the Mississippi River, lit with energy-efficient LED lights, and provided entertaining ice carving demonstrations, as well as other instruction and demonstrations around the tree.

All this is in addition to the nearly 200 shops and restaurants in Freeport, a number of which will be offering special bargains and packages for the occasion.

Many guests book rooms for Sparkle Weekend for the next year as they depart from the previous year, so rooms can be in short supply. Be sure to plan early, to be sure your room is available.

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