Nov 302013
 
Bird Watching on Mount Desert Island in Maine—Another Victory for the Nerds

Consider bird watching.  Once thought of as a hobby for elderly folks of the nerdier sort, in 2011 it was the subject of a comedy starring Owen Wilson.  Mick Jagger and Paul McCartney are both said to be fans of this pastime that originally gained popularity in Victorian England with the publication of such books as Birds through an Opera Glass (1889), but today counts one out of every five Americans as a participant. My [...]

Nov 022013
 
Acadia’s 18th Annual Oktoberfest Draws Old Fans and Creates New Ones

I have no credentials that qualify me to review an Oktoberfest event. When one of the brewers I visited at Acadia’s Oktoberfest described an ale as very “hoppy,” I said, “Yes, happy!” and extended my sampling glass. With my credentials—or lack thereof—established, I can now share my sentiments about the annual Acadia Oktoberfest, and you can rest assured that I won’t be describing the beers in the manner of, say, a wine critic. This year, as [...]

Oct 012013
 
Government Shutdown of Acadia National Park: It Won’t Spoil Your Trip to Maine

The government closure of national parks, effective October 1, 2013, has affected thousands of visitors looking forward to seeing Acadia National Park this fall.  With National Park webpages also shutdown, official information is limited.  However, local experts have stepped in to share the latest information on such social media sites as TripAdvisor, where postings under “Contingency Plans” in the Bar Harbor forum are filling the gaps for worried travelers. The Park Loop Road has been [...]

Sep 282013
 
A New Yorker Talks to Herself about Maine: The Blue Hill Fair

“When the udder is nicely attached like this, that’s good,” explained the pretty, blue-eyed member of the 4-H goat program. Then she moved gracefully over to another goat in the small pen and swung her hand to its underside to demonstrate a dangling udder, pointing out, “Not like this.” What makes an award-winning goat was what had piqued my curiosity as I wandered among the livestock shows at the Blue Hill Fair, which was celebrating [...]

Sep 152013
 
This October Take a Fall Photo Workshop in Maine's Acadia National Park

  Last March I got to go on a Lindblad/National Geographic expedition to Costa Rica that had a photography emphasis.  One of our guides was both a well-educated, local naturalist and certified photography instructor.  That combination of talents in the field—and Costa Rica is so amazing both close in and from afar—made the trip unusually satisfying. If you’ve always wanted to participate in a photo workshop in Maine, I recommend you consider the upcoming Acadia [...]

Aug 222013
 
Join Judy Taylor's Painting Expedition to a Private Island off Mount Desert Island, Maine

In 2011 the Spanierman Gallery in New York City brought together the work of 24 artists, including Will Barnet, George Bellows, and Marsden Hartley, to examine how Maine had inspired them.  Entitled “Maine – An Artist’s Retreat,” the show revealed many representations of the state’s coastline and islands.  Yet, what sets Maine apart, the catalog said, is how Maine’s forests, rocky shores, marshes, and harbors always present themselves as fresh, alive, and unexplored, no matter [...]

Aug 142013
 
Wildlife in Maine's Acadia National Park: Bring Your Binoculars!

Eight guests had signed up for an exclusive “cooking adventure” at Ann’s Point Inn in Bass Harbor, Maine.  Working alongside Chef James Lindquist of Red Sky Restaurant, they were preparing the evening’s menu:  dumplings filled with just-picked mushrooms, steamed clams and mussels over freshly made pasta, halibut with a triple citrus beurre blanc, and lobster steamed in seawater and seaweed collected outside the inn.  After Chef Lindquist deboned and skinned the halibut, he suggested they [...]

Aug 052013
 
Name the World's Best Islands

What do Oahu, Majorca, Fiji, and Mount Desert Island have in common?  Well, discerning travelers have just ranked them among their favorite islands in Travel + Leisure’s 18th annual poll to identify the “World’s Best.” This much-anticipated publishing event occurs every August and fuels bucket lists for avid travelers worldwide.  It provides rankings not only of destinations, including cities, but also hotels, cruises, and airlines that “define the very best in travel.”  Travel + Leisure [...]

Jul 282013
 
Maine Pie Entrepreneur Gains Bigger Piece of A Market Locals & Vacationers Love

Nothing typifies the Maine vacation experience more than lobster and blueberry pie.  And this year Thurston’s Lobster Pound in Bass Harbor, considered by many the best lobster pound on Mount Desert Island, switched its pie purveyor to a start-up baker, who three years ago was worrying about how to pay for new siding on her house. That’s how Mary Musson describes why she started IslandBound Treats.  “It was on a lark,” she grins.  “We were [...]

Jul 212013
 
Pemetic Mountain in Acadia National Park: A Hike that Has It All

What’s your favorite kind of hike?  A stroll alongside a pond?  A heart-pumping scramble across boulders?  An exciting squeeze through a narrow ravine?  Anything that provides the reward of spectacular views? Hiking the west side of Pemetic Mountain provides all of these and more. At 1,248 feet, Pemetic Mountain is only about 300 feet shorter than Cadillac, Mount Desert Island’s highest peak and star attraction for visitors to Acadia National Park.  Yet, unlike Cadillac, which [...]