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Archive for the ‘Things to do in Kennebunkport Maine’ Category

The Best Things About a Maine Bed and Breakfast in the Fall

October 1st, 2012 by Judi Hauer

It’s hard to believe that it is already October, but the cooler weather and stunning foliage we’ve been experiencing at our Maine Bed and Breakfast says that it sure is!  And while the daytime weather has been absolutely spectacular for exploring Southern Maine, the crisp evening air just begs for a fleece and some cuddling with your special someone.  While that in itself is something to celebrate, I thought I would share some of my favorite things about the Fall foliage season!

  • Ummm, it’s gorgeous!  What more can you say about the incredible, almost technicolor hues that the trees are taking on?
    maine bed and breakfast in the fall

    With a plethora of pumpkins, we’ve got to get creative!

    Just make sure you’ve got plenty of space on your memory card and fully charged batteries, because you’re going to need it!  But whether you’re planning on taking in the view by land or by sea (or some combination of the two), we’re happy to help you figure out the best spots to explore and catch the most vivid hues.

  • Local produce – apples, pumpkins, squash – oh my!  Not only are these fun fall items cropping up on the breakfast menu at our Maine Bed and Breakfast, but area restaurants are also incorporating them into their creations.  Plus, pick-your-own farms are far from hard to find and anyone at the Maine Stay Inn would be happy to recommend their personal favorite!  And bringing home some freshly picked apples to test out one of our recipes at home sounds like a great way to cap off a getaway!
  • Hay rides!  Can you get any more classically “New England” than a fall hay ride?  Just imagine yourself in a fresh hay lined wagon with two horses clopping through the fallen leaves…. heavenly!  Rockin’ Horse Stables is one of several places in the area that offers hayrides in Kennebunkport, and on your way to their farm you can drink in one of the prettiest foliage displays in the area!

A Fall Weekend in Kennebunkport Maine

September 28th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

On a chilly evening like this one, there’s nothing better than snuggling up in front of a warm (and non-smoky) gas fireplace – and fortunately for me (and you!) there’s one with my name on it right in the living room of our Kennebunkport Maine Bed and Breakfast.  Not to mention the fact that nine of our guest rooms and suites have their very own, which is ideal for cuddling with your special someone!  But given the chilly weather and light drizzle tonight, cozying up with some tea in front of the fire is a perfect

Fall getaway in Kennebunkport Maine

What could be better than snuggling by a cozy fire this fall?!

activity.  Tomorrow’s forecast, however, is much better!  A few light showers might pass through the area, and in the event that your fall hike, bike or stroll is interrupted, there are lots of great weather-independent activities this weekend that you might enjoy.

After breakfast at the Maine Stay Inn, you can head over to the Maine Women in the Arts Craft Show at the Consolidated Elementary School.  It’s just around the corner, but in the event that you haven’t brought inclement weather appropriate footwear, there’s plenty of parking too!  And this weekend you can enjoy a real fall escape with the Pumpkin Patch Trolley ride at the Seashore Trolley Museum.  For kids and adults alike, you can put your feet up and drink in the view during a scenic and colorful ride along the property’s loops of rail, paint a keepsake pumpkin, and hop back on for great photo ops before picking up your pumpkin to take home.

Sometimes, though, you just need to spice up life with a little drama – onstage, that is!  Whether it’s on the big screen or the big stage, there are plenty of options near Kennebunkport Maine.  Traditional movie theater, the Wells Five Star Cinema, is just a few moments’ drive up the road, where you can catch the latest blockbusters.  But if you’re in the mood for something a bit different, Smitty’s Cinema in Biddeford offers “one-stop shopping” with meals and movies all in the same spot.  Yes, that means you can get a burger and a beer while watching your new fave flick.  Looking for something you can’t get at home?  Consider a trip to the Ogunquit playhouse for an evening show or a matinee!  With world-class performances at neighborhood showhouse prices, how could you go wrong?  But no matter what you choose, you’re sure to have a phenomenal fall weekend in Kennebunkport Maine!

Tours of the Wedding Cake House Have Begun!

September 16th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

On my way to our Maine Bed and Breakfast each day, I pass the Wedding Cake House, which could very possibly be the most photographed private home in Maine.  It’s beyond incredible.  Now, since my architectural knowledge is really pretty advanced, I just know that those twizzles and twirlies and intricately carved doo-hickeys are pretty snazzy!  Okay, I basically know that a house has a roof and walls, but this one is amazing.  It’s hard to believe that this home (and it is really a private home) could have been so

Take a tour of the Wedding Cake House!

well preserved and restored over the years without losing any of its splendor, but it seemingly has.  The Wedding Cake House is believed to have been built in 1815, which makes this architectural feat even more amazing, because that was long before the invention of power tools and laser cutters.

At one point, the building fell in great disrepair, but the current owner, Jimmy Barker, purchased the home and restored the facade and interior with incredible TLC.  His personal art collections grace the walls, except for the front stairwell, which features a curved mural wrapping its way up the spiral staircase, depicting scenes from Summer Street in downtown Kennebunk all the way into Kennebunkport.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t quite reach to the Maine Stay Inn, though depending on the date the mural was commissioned, it might not even have been built yet!

Nevertheless, for visitors to our Maine Bed and Breakfast and locals alike, tours of the Wedding Cake House should not be missed!  And since they run daily from now through October 15, 2012, you’ve got plenty of time to sneak one in.  And if you’re anything like me, you’ll need to go back for more!  So after enjoying breakfast, you can pop over for a tour anytime between 10 am and 4 pm, but keep in mind that the last organized tour starts at 3:30.  This is only the third time that the Wedding Cake House has been opened

to the public, as it is a private residence, and it’s all for a great cause – combatting hunger in York County (the southernmost county in Maine).  So while a $10 donation is suggested, it’s for a great cause, so you can enjoy a fun one-in-a-blue-moon activity and know that you’re doing a good deed!

Visiting Lighthouses Near a Maine Bed and Breakfast

September 14th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

We’re quickly approaching a really exciting day of the year – Open Lighthouse Day – which means that visitors to our Maine Bed and Breakfast have the opportunity to venture inside some of the incredible gems that speckle the Maine coastline.  While we are extremely fortunate that, starting during summer 2011, the Friends of Wood Island Lighthousebanded together to offer tours of the facility.  Their volunteer effort has truly been remarkable, as the group has offered six plus tours a week during the warm weather, including a boat ride (because it really is on Wood Island!), guided walk through a bird sanctuary, and a tour of the lighthouse and

You’ll find Wood Island Lighthouse just off the coast of Biddeford pool, not far from the Maine Stay!

tower.  That said, reservations have sometimes been a little tough to come by, because this donation-suggested activity is both amazing and budget friendly!  So if you didn’t get the chance to visit during the summer, you can take advantage of Open Lighthouse Day this Saturday to get your fill.

Not only will Wood Island Light be open to the public, but two lighthouses outside of Portland will also open their doors for exploration.  Less than thirty miles from our Maine Bed and Breakfast, you’ll encounter two more lighthouses, the Portland Head Lighthouse and the Portland Breakwater Lighthouse.  Unlike Wood Island, both of these are land based (no boats required!), but that surely won’t reduce the fun factor.  At the Portland Breakwater light, also known as “Bug Light,” you’ll be able to explore the light tower.  It’s on the small side, but if you’d like to make an adventure out of it, you could consider taking one of the Casco Bay cruises, which will give you an up-close and personal view, without having to climb any stairs!  Portland Head Light, one of the more iconic lighthouses in Maine, will open its keepers’ house and light tower to the public and, of course, Maine Bed and Breakfast guests.  Just make sure you can handle at least 85 steps  beforehand, because it’s a requirement for participation.  But if more organized fun isn’t exactly your thing, consider asking someone at the front desk for suggestions or self guided trips to see some other lighthouses in the area.  But no matter what, you’re sure to catch some of the infectious energy and good spirits up and down the coast because of Open Lighthouse Day 2012.

This Week in Kennebunkport Maine

September 11th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

The trend to cool mornings and late evenings in Kennebunkport Maine has been well received, as it means breaking out some lightweight sweaters and jackets while meandering through town, but the events’ calendar is still heatin’ up in the area.  So in addition to some of your tried-and-true favorites, consider checking out some of these great events happening not far from our Kennebunkport Maine Bed and Breakfast this week!

  • The Art Guild of the Kennebunks is sponsoring a demo event on Thursday evening (starting at 7) of fiber arts at the River
    Kennebunkport Maine lighthouse

    Don’t miss out on Open LIghthouse Day!

    Tree Center for the Arts.  Always a blast, the RTA events are a must-do, even if you just wander in before dinner – with their super convenient location (with great proximity to Ryan’s Corner House, Pedro’s, Grissini, and On the Marsh) and no admission fee, there’s not reason to not give it a go!

  • If outdoor activities are more your thing, try kayaking on the Little River Estuary at Laudholm Farm/the Wells Reserve.  With a guide for the small group for three whole hours, who could ask for more?
  • On Friday, check out the antique car show just up the road in Old Orchard Beach or head out to West Kennebunk for some beefed-up stargazing at Starfest.  Presented by the Astronomical Society of Northern New England, this daytime and nighttime events is sure to be a hit.
  • Open lighthouse day is Saturday, and the opportunity to check out lots of area lighthouses up close and personal is always a great experience, and with incredible weather in the forecast, you definitely don’t want to miss out on this when visiting in Kennebunkport Maine this weekend!

But, as usual, this is just a smattering of some of my favorites things happening soon, so don’t fret!  There’s tons to do in Kennebunkport, and if you need any kind of guidance, the Maine Stay Inn and staff is always ready to help!

Visiting Kennebunkport Maine In September

September 3rd, 2012 by Judi Hauer

It’s hard to believe that Labor Day is already upon us, but fortunately September is a fabulous month in Kennebunkport Maine!  Honestly, September is the forgotten month of summer up here, and while the evenings may be a tad cooler (and who doesn’t love throwing on a cardigan or sweatshirt for a post-dinner stroll?), the days are basically indistinguishable from those of August.  So don’t pack away that swimsuit yet, because there is plenty of fun in the sun to be had this month!  But the beauty of taking your

Check out this quiet beach in Kennebunkport!

“summer vacation” in September is that since most kiddos are back in school – or at least will be this week – the sand is much less populated and far more peaceful.  Did I mention that the water is warmer now than ever?  Yep, it’s true – September brings the warmest water temperatures of the year in Kennebunkport Maine.  But if you’re like my mother, not even that fact will persuade her to take a dip, however, the solitude you’ll find along the shore is still ideal for resting, relaxing, or catching up on some great reading.  Forgot your book?  Take a peek at some of the titles in our miniature library of beach reading or hit up the never ending book sale at the Graves Memorial Library just down the street from the Maine Stay Inn.  Plus with titles starting at just fifty cents, you can stock up on some new reads!

Fortunately for my prone-to-imitating-a-lobster skin, there are oodles of fun things to do in the area that don’t revolve around soaking up some rays.  As always, the galleries have some incredible exhibits up that are just begging for perusing, and the restaurants are in full swing to keep you fueled for exploring the area.  And after an August with lots of sunshine, you’ll find that more and more Kennebunkport restaurants will be featuring local produce on their menus.  But as you know, Kennebunkport is full of fun activities, so stay tuned for updates and upcoming events.

Passing Along the Red Chair to Another Maine Bed and Breakfast

August 25th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

The last few days have been lots of fun as we welcomed the traveling Red Chair to Kennebunkport and the Maine Stay Inn.  But all good things have to come to an end, an this is no exception, as we prepare to pass it along to another Maine bed and breakfast.  It seems funny to give this slightly worn red chair a crash course in visiting Kennebunkport, but it sure has been a blast!  It’s taken a

Kennebunkport St. Ann's Church

The red chair at the door of St. Ann’s Episcopal church

tour of Dock Square and stopped at the “Welcome to Kennebunkport” sign; it’s been to the beaches (but not gone in the water – we’ve got to save some of that bright red paint for others to enjoy!) and out to Cape Porpoise.  It’s been photographed by the Bush estate and the anchor honoring George H.W. Bush’s contributions to the United States.  It’s been on jetties and rocky crags, on hillsides and on river banks.

So today, after joining us on the porch for breakfast, we decided to take the red chair one last place before we pass it along to another Maine bed and breakfast.  And given the absolutely spectacular weather we experienced this morning and afternoon, we decided that it should visit St. Ann’s Episcopal church for a little look-see.  Visiting turned out to be a real treat, as it’s been quite a while since I last checked it out.  No wonder couples wait years for the opportunity to marry inside – it’s just incredible!  But regardless of religious preference, the church’s historic edifice and amazing location meant that it was ideal for picture taking.  Next on the agenda?  Stopping by to experience one of their outdoor services… right along the coastline! Unfortunately, that will have to wait for another visit from the Red Chair, as we pass it off tomorrow to another Maine bed and breakfast.

Author Visits Kennebunkport Library

August 19th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

As many people know, Kennebunkport is very invested in the arts, especially fine and culinary arts (galleries and restaurants, I am lookin’ at you!), but our local libraries do an excellent job of bringing literature to the community and visitors.  Throughout the summer, published authors have visited the Graves Public Library, sharing pieces of their books and the stories of their inspiration.  But a few nights ago, the visiting author held special meaning for us at the Maine Stay, as she is one of our neighbors.  And not

Kennebunkport Library

Visiting authors are not to be missed at Kennebunkport’s Graves Library

only that, but we had the pleasure of having her wonderful parents as guests before they moved to town!

So while most of our visitors were out to dinner, we strolled a few doors down the street to celebrate the release of Stephanie Kate Strohm‘s newly released book, Pilgrims Don’t Wear Pink.  Set in a fictional Maine community that is home to a living history museum, the book is a young adult fusion of Nancy Drew and Scooby-Doo, with a twist of school-girl romance.  Now, who wouldn’t love that?  So as friends, family, and eager readers listened, Stephanie shared the whirlwind story of how she penned this great tale and her adventures into the publishing world.  And while she shrugged off her success, chalking it up to little more than luck, the audience realized what incredible talent this young lady possesses.  Not only is this kind, hard-working 25-year-old a published author, but she’s got another one in the works! We’re already looking forward to her return to Kennebunkport next year for a reading from her next book, due out in Spring 2013.

In addition to picking up my very own copy (and autographed, I might add!) at the Kennebunkport Public Library the other night, I realized that an incredible assortment of writers grace their halls throughout the summer (and the year).  It’s a resource I rarely gave much thought, but that’s changed now that I know what wonderful programming comes through.  So stay tuned for updates on more events just around the corner from the Maine Stay Inn!

Visiting Kennebunkport’s Cape Porpoise

August 14th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

Kennebunkport has long been the home of sea-faring folk, and for many years, the district known today as Cape Porpoise was home to fishermen and their families.  Today, while their boats remain moored in Cape Porpoise Harbor, few can afford the McMansions and breathtaking views, which characterize the area.  Don’t get me wrong, though, there are plenty of historic homes and adorable cottages, but some of the most stunning locations feature spectacular, yet tasteful, new construction homes.

Goat Island Lighthouse

A distant view of Goat Island LIght on a beautiful summer day

Nevertheless, the Cape Porpoise area retains a vastly different feel than the historic district of Kennebunkport, and it certainly earns its spot of my top five must-visit list.

So whether you choose to spend the day or just a few moments there, it is well worth the short trip from the Maine Stay Inn and Cottages.  The pier at the tip of (aptly named) Pier Road remains a working destination for fishermen bringing in their haul.  It’s always fun to watch them pull in their traps, unload  the boat, and weigh their catches.  But Cape Porpoise is also known for being home to Goat Island lighthouse, which sits just off shore.  You can easily see the now restored facade from the mainland, but if you wish to get closer (and not just by upping the zoon on your camera), renting kayaks is a great option.  Plus, if you’re an anxious paddler, you can contact one of the touring companies to design and accompany you on your trip.   And new this summer, you can even enjoy a trip to and tour of the lighthouse on the boat The Porpus.

And while picnicking on at the small park at the tip of the pier is a personal favorite activity, three restaurants sit right there, just for the non-picnic sort.  But even if you have packed a lunch, the idea of picking up a Hoodsie or two is the idea way to cap off an afternoon.  Fortunately, Cape Pier Chowder House has got you covered!  So whatever your mood, be sure not to miss a visit to Kennebunkport’s Cape Porpoise.

5 Ways to Add Romance to Your Maine Bed and Breakfast Vacation

August 13th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

For some folks, coming up with ideas to add romance to your Maine vacation is a piece of cake, while for others, it’s as daunting as explaining particle physics.  But no matter which camp you fall into, there is no better place to enjoy a romantic getaway than Kennebunkport Maine, with its assortment of incredible restaurants and breathtaking vistas.  Nevertheless, I am going to share five of my favorite intimate adventures in the area (and get your mind out of the gutter – they’re all totally PG):

romantic picnic in kennebunkport maine

A scenic spot like this one is perfect for a romantic picnic!

  • Have a quiet picnic lunch.  Seriously, what could be more relaxing that picking up a gourmet lunch at one of our favorite markets with high-end prepared foods and layering on a bottle of wine and an assortment of cheese?  Nada, that’s what I think!  And fortunately for us at the Kennebunkport Maine Stay Inn, there are plenty of quiet, tucked-away spots just a stone’s throw from the inn.
  • Choose the perfect room.  Think about a favorite color or whether you (or rather your special someone) likes a fireplace or a whirlpool tub.  Those little details can go a long way in setting the right tone for your Maine vacation.  And consider one of our Cottage Suites, because the option for having breakfast delivered to your door and indulging in breakfast in bed is something you can’t really have at home.  But if you need guidance, the staff of our Kennebunkport Maine Bed and Breakfast is happy to help!
  • Take schooner or sailboat ride.  Kennebunkport is fortunate to have several companies that offer trips on large, multi-masted schooners, and they all provide relaxing cruises along the coastline for small groups.  There’s little worry when it comes to seasickness, because the captains won’t go out if the water is rough.  So sit back, relax and enjoy each other’s company while drinking in the views of the Maine coastline.
  • Enjoy a romantic dinner at one of Kennebunkport’s many excellent restaurants.  At the Maine Stay, we’re happy to help guide you to a spot with just the right vibe, whether that means dining by candlelight or something fresh and modern.
  • Catch a sunset!  There’s something so romantic about watching the sky light up in the evening right by your partner’s side, and Kennebunkport is known for some pretty spectacular displays.  Dock Square, with its historic facades and waterfront location, is often an ideal backdrop for a beautiful sunset, but there are also plenty of quiet coves along the coast that offer seclusion and a place for lounging (or, if you’re feeling creative, a great spot for a sunset picnic!).

So seize the opportunity to inject a little romantic spirit into your Maine Bed and Breakfast experience, but keep in mind that the staff at the Maine Stay has lots of great ideas (okay, not all of them are original, as plenty of guests have given us some great ones over the years), and they are all happy to share with you.  Happy planning!