Five Freeport Area Winter Blasts
If you’re looking for something different and fun to do around Freeport this Winter, try one of these five Freeport area winter blasts!
I know, I know, our Winter has been a little slow kicking in, but if you remember the timing of last year’s Winter, it wasn’t much different. By mid-January, it had kicked in in a BIG WAY! The POLAR VORTEX is moving in!
#1 is weather bullet-proof, VISIT AN ICE BAR! Wow, they’re like Maine micro-brews, inn that you have a plethora of choices. The first will be offered at Spire & Ice Inn Gotham, January 15-16; the second at the Portland Harbor Hotel on the following weekend, third at the Brunswick Hotel & Tavern February 4-6, and finally here in Freeport on February 19 & 20 as part of “Flavors of Freeport.”
How about a biathlon? A BIATHLON is a competitive endurance event combining cross-country skiing with target shooting. For $25, this event in Jefferson, Maine (1/2 hour east) is open to all, even beginners, including the opportunity to borrow an air rifle and receive instruction before heading out. In the best tradition of Maine events, beer and hot toddies are available! By the way, Pineland Farms, 15 minutes from Brewster House is the practice ground for the US Biathlon Team!
In the summer, Bradbury Mountain State Park hosts competitive Mountain Bike and running events, but in the winter turns to their SNOWSHOE Series. http://trailmonsterrunning.com/bradburysnow About 8 miles west of us in Pownal, these events are offered on 1/24, 2/14 and 3/6. These races range from 3 to 5 miles long. Although they have a few pair of snowshoes to loan, it would seem that if you’re up to racing, you would likely have your own (they’re on a 50% off sale as I speak @ LL Bean).
I’ve written about this before, but it’s so fun and Mainely unique, it’s worth a visit! It’s sort of a Mardi Gras built on the US NATIONAL TOBOGGAN CHAMPIONSHIPS at Camden Snow Bowl from Feb. 5-7. http://www.camdensnowbowl.com/toboggan-championships/ For $30, you can compete on your 2, 3 or 4 person toboggan, by taking your waxed up toboggan down the 400’ iced wooden chute and across the frozen pond at it’s base. Most teams are in costume, and the eats and drinks are a large part of this annual show.
February 6th brings the SNOWMAN ADVENTURE RACE on East End Hill in Portland, 15 minutes south of us. This sounds like a mini winter-biathlon! http://www.snowmanadventure.com Every piece begins with a run up East End hill and a return sled down with teammates sledding as one to the finish. This event is a 2 person relay, made up of a 4-1/2 mile bicycle race around the Back Cove, a 2-1/4 mile run around the East End and the Back Cove. There will be mens, women, co-ed and adult-kids teams as well.
No matter your event choice, we have ample toboggan, sled, bike and snowshoe parking here at Brewster House, and are well equipped to soothe your body & mind post event, with a hot bath, ironed sheets and bottle of your favorite wine! Call us at 207-865-4121, or online at www.brewsterhouse.com to reserve a fireplace room!
July 18 – July 20th will mark the Portland visit of Tall Ships 2015, the first return of this event in 15 years, and the final stop of the 2015 Tall Ships Challenge! The Challenge being a series of races beginning in Cape Charles,Virginia which makes stops up the East coast in Philadelphia, Camden, NJ, and Greenport, NY before finishing in Portland. These races are crewed by young people in a friendly competition, as a means of sail training and education.
Portland will host at least eight tall ships, being lead by the US Coast Guard barque Eagle (295’) , and including the Oliver Hazard Perry (210’ square rigger out of Newport, RI), the Picton Castle (179’ baroque home-ported in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia), and the El Galeon (180’ from Seville, Spain). The list of participating sailing ships is still being finalized, but will likely include the Bowdoin, 100’ schooner famed for it’s Arctic explorations and formerly captained by Donald MacMillan http://www.bowdoin.edu/arctic-museum/biographies/macmillan.shtml (who grew up beside Brewster House), and other Maine based windjammers.
If you’ve never had the privilege of seeing and hearing these amazing specters from our past under sail, you owe yourself the opportunity to experience what is a deeply evocative and emotional experience! It is truly a unique historical moment you will never forget!! The fleet will sail in parade fashion into Portland Harbor on July 18th at 1PM, and dock for tours along the Portland waterfront. You may tour the Eagle for free, but tickets to tour all of the ships may be found at www.tallshipsportland.com for $15 (which will support sail training and education). Ship tours will be offered from 9AM to 9PM on Sunday, and 9AM to 6PM on Monday. The event will also include live music and food, which is remarkable in Portland, SO DON’T MISS THIS SUMMER HIGH POINT!
As I write this blog, Brewster House still has several rooms available, so make this getaway complete by booking your stay with us NOW!
Road or mud run, choose your pain! We know, it’s been one long painful winter and we’re all DYING to get out and play in the sweet outside we all know will return!! Here are some inspirational opportunities to motivate you with the prospect of mud, pain and the great satisfaction of finishing… followed by the sublime rest and relaxation of a hot shower, nap, glass of wine in the garden, fine dinner and an elegant night at Brewster House.
For those of you who favor the simple, relatively clean discipline of road running, we’ll open with “Race the Runways” 1 mile, 5K and half marathon at the former Naval Air Base in Brunswick on April 4th. Sign up now www.racetherunways.com!
On May 23rd & 24th, share the sublime and expansive beauty of Pineland Farms in New Gloucester and, you could run with your dog! Saturday you can choose 5 or 10K, Canine Cross 5K or Barefoot 5K. Sunday, more challenging distances of 25K, 50K or 50 miles are on the agenda www.pinelandtrails.com. You’ll be running their network of hiking and cross-country skiing trails spread over 15,000 acres!
A few miles west of Brewster House is Bradbury Mountain State Park. They’re offering 6, 9 and 12 mile dirt trail runs labelled “The Scuffer,” “The Breaker,” and “The Bruiser,” and you have 3 chances at it; Sundays – July 12th, August 9th and September 13th!. www.trailmonsterrunning.com/bradburydirt
OK, HERE’S THE REAL MUD! First up, “Into the Mud Challenge” Costume up and crawl through 2.5 miles of muck, mire and obstacles for the scholarship fundraiser on May 3rd at Gorham (Maine) Middle School www.intothemudchallenge.com
Back to Pineland Farms for the May 31st “Dynamic Dirt Challenge!” 4 – 5 miles of of hay bales, mud, swamps, culverts www.dynamicdirtchallenge.com
Last, but not least The Tough Mudder, and what a mudder it is!! 10 miles of brutal, soul sucking slime, including a muck coated tube, a rope swing over gross water, and to add a shocking note – a muddy crawl under live wires!! AND YOU GET TO PAY AN ENTRY FEE FOR ALL OF THIS!! 9/26 – 27, Sunset Ridge, Westbrook www.toughmudder.com
You’re going to need Brewster House to coddle you after any of these!! ENJOY!!