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Posts Tagged ‘Christmas Prelude’

Winter Wonderland Comes to Kennebunkport Maine

December 16th, 2013 by Judi Hauer

Now Kennebunkport Maine really feels ready for the holidays!

Now Kennebunkport Maine really feels ready for the holidays!

After a lifetime of living in New England, I’ve come to entirely distrust the weather forecasts, but much to my chagrin, the meteorologists were spot on this past weekend, with their snowy forecast for Kennebunkport Maine.  And truthfully, we’d all been wishing for a little of the flaky stuff to really make it feel like the holiday season.  None arrived for Thanksgiving, and the ground remained bare for the first weekend of Christmas Prelude.  The second weekend of Prelude arrived with not a speck of snow to be found, and my doubts for flakes faded as Saturday afternoon turned to evening without a hint of snow.  But when I woke up to over a foot of snow on Sunday morning, Kennebunkport Maine had been transformed into a winter wonderland!  Fortunately Mother Nature blessed us with precipitation in the form of soft powder, which meant that nearly blizzard like conditions couldn’t stop us from delivering piping hot breakfasts to guests in seven of the cottage suites at our Kennebunkport Maine bed and breakfast.  Now the fact that all of them didn’t choose the room service option is a little surprising, but it turns out that lots of people enjoy the snow as much as I do!  And with Christmas just nine days away, it finally feels like the holiday season after this snowstorm transformed Kennebunkport Maine into a Winter Wonderland!

Christmas Prelude 2013 is Underway in Kennebunkport Maine!

December 7th, 2013 by Judi Hauer

christmas prelude

It sure is quite a tree we’ve got for Christmas Prelude in Kennebunkport Maine!

Kennebunkport Maine is alive with Christmas Prelude festivities, and tonight is no exception! Now that the tree is lit with its signature lobster topper, town looks particularly beautiful.  That said, this time of year is always especially cheerful, with Christmas garlands lining the downtown area and historic district, and historic homes (including our Kennebunkport Bed and Breakfast) are sparkling with their Christmas lights.

Today’s activities featured a multitude of craft fairs, shopping extravaganzas, art shows, and musical events.  But for the eighth straight year, people have dropped everything to stand by the road in Dock Square for the Crazy Hat Parade.  Crowds lined the street (akin to a miniature version of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade) while several hundred enthusiastic folks donned on the most ridiculous costumes and hats you could imagine.  Laughter and cheering followed each group, and children were rewarded for their patience and cooperation with candy canes!

The incredible array of activities continue throughout tomorrow, but if you didn’t make it this weekend there is still next weekend for Prelude Round 2!  And if you can’t find your schedule of events for Christmas Prelude 2013, you can visit the website for more information. And, of course, we have lots of schedules and reading materials at the Maine Stay Inn.  But now it’s time to hit the sack, because there is so much more Christmas Prelude 2013 to enjoy tomorrow in Kennebunkport Maine!

Bargain Kennebunkport Bed and Breakfast Getaway

November 20th, 2013 by Judi Hauer

Cozy up by a fire for some much needed R&R!

Cozy up by a fire for some much needed R&R!

Our Kennebunkport bed and breakfast is excited to debut a very special getaway offer during the upcoming holiday season.  And since we know that this time of year can bring lots of stress and family or social obligations, everyone deserves a chance for a bit of rest and relaxation.  So to make the a rejuvenating getaway possible, you can visit the Maine Stay Inn any Sunday through Thursday nights (Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve not included) for two nights in a room or suite with a fireplace, and you’ll get the rock bottom rate of just $129 per night!  A deal like that has to be too good to be true, right?  Not a chance!  In fact, the only catch is that we pick the room based on availability.  You’ll still get the free high speed WiFi, gourmet breakfasts, unlimited tea and coffee, and even our freshly baked cookies each afternoon, so you really can get the best of all worlds – a luxurious getaway and a stellar deal that will leave lots of green for you to get all of your holiday shopping done!  And with Christmas Prelude coming soon, Kennebunkport is looking its finest, with lights and holiday decor all over town – and our Kennebunkport bed and breakfast is no exception.  Plus, since some windy weather has meant that most of the leaves have fallen, folks all over the area have taken the opportunity to get their Christmas lights up early.  That means that the late fall lull that sometimes happens after the autumn foliage fades is filled with twinkling lights high and low.  So while we aren’t breaking out the Christmas tunes just yet, the holiday spirit sure is filling all of us at the Maine Stay.  This year as you spread holiday cheer to others, don’t leave yourself out, and take advantage of our $129 Midweek Special to our Kennebunkport bed and breakfast!

Holiday Shopping in Kennebunkport Maine

November 18th, 2013 by Judi Hauer

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Check out the unique shops in Kennebunkport’s Dock Square!

Kennebunkport Maine is often known for its assortment of fine shops, and that means that it’s a prime location to get some holiday shopping done!  All of us at the Maine Stay Inn are feel so lucky to have such a great spot for retail therapy just steps away.  And unlike many vacation destinations, Dock Square is not overrun with T-shirt shops and souvenir stands.  Instead, you’ll find incredible art galleries, chic boutiques, and fine crafts with products from many local craftsmen.  No, you’re not going to find the Gap or an H&M, but the products sold in Kennebunkport Maine really reflect the character of New England and the uniqueness of the area.  Now, if more mainstream stores are what you’re searching for, don’t worry!  There are two world-class outlet centers not far from our Kennebunkport bed and breakfast.  Heading to our south, you’ll find the Kittery Outlets by Tanger, with more stores and brands than I could ever imagine!  Frankly, the only downside I see here is that this outlet center is in a strip mall kind of set up, which means that walking or driving between cluster isn’t the most exciting or inspiring of events.  That said, whatever Christmas shopping you can’t get done in Kennebunkport you can definitely cross off the list here.  Or you could head north to the Freeport Outlets, with LLBean as the crown jewel of this shopping area.  And while they don’t have quite as many stores as you might find in Freeport, you’ll experience a very pleasant small town feel while enjoying all the  benefits of a huge shopping complex.  And if you’ve got the bug to hit up LLBean at 2 am just because you can, this is definitely the place to go.  But no matter which direction you head or if you stay right in town, you’re sure to enjoy your holiday preparation this year when shopping in Kennebunkport Maine!


Christmas Prelude 2013 is Coming to Kennebunkport!

November 8th, 2013 by Judi Hauer

kennebunkport tree.

It’s hard to believe, but Christmas Prelude 2013 is well on its way to Kennebunkport!  In fact, it’s less than 30 days away now!  And even though Christmas decorations showed up in the stores promptly on November 1, I can’t quite wrap my head around it being “the Holidays” while there are still leaves on some of the trees.  But the weather is getting much cooler, and the air is getting that crisp, late fall feeling, which means… winter’s not far behind!  So get ready for getting in the holiday spirit with a trip to the nation’s second best Christmas festival, Christmas Prelude in Kennebunkport Maine!  All of us at the Maine Stay Inn feel so lucky to get to experience this incredible event each year from our location just a few short blocks from the heart of the action.  We’re looking forward to Christmas Prelude 2013 and can’t wait to celebrate with you in Kennebunkport!

Christmas Prelude One of World’s Best Christmas Festivals

December 13th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

Now, all of us in Kennebunkport have known for ages that Christmas Prelude is incredible, but just yesterday, AOL SKYE released their list of the Best Christmas Festivals in the World- and guess who was on the list?!!?  You guessed it!  Although I suppose that the title gave that away, but how cool is that?  It’s kind of hard to believe how any Christmas celebration could top ours, but when

Bob Dennis Christmas Prelude fireworks photograph

Check out this incredible shot of the Christmas Prelude fireworks by Bob Dennis of Port Images!

you see that historic cities like London and Nuremberg hold several of the spots, Kennebunkport’s Christmas Prelude (just celebrating it’s 31st anniversary) is a mere baby by comparison.  What an honor!

A couple of years ago, reporters announced that over nine thousand people gathered in Dock Square, just steps from our Kennebunkport Bed and Breakfast, to watch the ceremonial lighting of the Christmas tree, but somehow this festival has maintained a charming, and intimate feeling.  It’s hard to believe that just over thirty years ago, Christmas Prelude was conceived as a fun event for local shopkeepers to say thank you to the community for their patronage throughout the year and it now finds itself among the top 14 Christmas Festivals in the entire world.  Now it’s our turn to say “thank you” to those very store owners for their continued efforts to keep this great event locally run (not to mention the fact that they are a pleasure to work with).  It has stretched to encompass two weekends of holiday cheer, and this year’s celebration was no exception – not even when the second weekend was graced with a little bit of rain.  And with fireworks over the Kennebunk River inlet, who would miss it?  We’re getting ready to fill you in on the details of the second annual Walk to Bethlehem – a reenactment of Mary and Joseph’s search for an inn, complete with livestock, wise men, and, of course, innkeepers.  While you’ll have to wait a touch longer for the cute pics, we just couldn’t wait one second longer to share the exciting news about Christmas Prelude as one of the world’s best Christmas Festivals!

Holiday Shopping in Kennebunkport Maine

December 6th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

The fall seems to have flown by and the holiday season is fully upon us, but fortunately for visitors to and residents of Kennebunkport Maine, you can conquer your entire shopping list in and around town!  Most people know of the incredible art galleries sprinkled throughout this quaint little village – which is great for the serious art lovers in your family – but the charming shops and boutiques are also ideal for finding unique gifts for the whole family.  And at this time of year, most of the stores are

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Our Holiday gift certificate sale is back!

offering door-buster deals that are not to be missed.

As much as I hate to admit it, there are more than a few times that you just can’t check off your list at a small local business, and that’s when nearby shopping centers come in very handy!  Just up the road from our Kennebunkport Maine bed and breakfast, you’ll find some big box stores to satisfy your electronics needs.  But if you’re looking to save even more, you could venture about 30 miles to our south and accomplish those big ticket purchases in tax-free Portsmouth, New Hampshire.  On your way, make sure not to miss the Kittery Outlets, which are home to 120 shops!  Or head north and hit the Freeport Outlets and the famous L.L. Bean – it really is open 24 hours a day.  While a little smaller in scale than its southern counterpart, the Freeport shopping experience feels a little more town-like, but still offers great prices from big name retailers.

But you can also satisfy some tough-to-please family members and friends with gifts straight from the Maine Stay Inn – think gift certificates, luxury bath products, or even a set of our luxurious linens.  No matter who or what you’re shopping for this season, you’re sure to be able to finish it all right from Kennebunkport Maine and enjoy a little pampering in the process!

Kennebunkport Bed and Breakfast Wishes Former President Bush a Speedy Recovery

December 4th, 2012 by Judi Hauer

Everyone at our Kennebunkport Bed and Breakfast wishes former President George H.W. Bush a speedy recovery.  Recently hospitalized near his winter-time home in Houston, Bush is suffering from a nasty cough that has lingered after a bout of bronchitis.  While his prognosis is good, a painful cough at the age of 88 is something that must be monitored closely, and all of us at the Maine Stay Inn are happy to hear that the former President is under the watchful eyes of medical professionals.  His and

Kennebunkport bush compound

A great view of the Bush Compound from Kennebunkport’s Ocean Avenue!

Barbara’s presence was certainly missed at this past weekend’s kick-off to Christmas Prelude, but we all know that the warm Texas air is certainly a better place for him to recuperate than Maine’s brisk December weather.  Last Saturday featured gentle snowfall throughout the day, and certainly set the perfect scene for Kennebunkport’s famous Christmas celebration.  But the mercury topped out at an unseasonably warm 50 degrees!  That means that visitors to Kennebunkport are enjoying the twinkling light displays and gorgeous decorations without even having to bundle up.  So this week, you can leave your boots at home, because this warm streak is supposed to last for quite a few more days, and instead pack your walking shoes, because exploring town on foot is one of the best ways to drink in the village’s unparalleled holiday cheer.  But don’t forget to send the former President wishes for a speedy recovery if you find yourself strolling by the Bush family compound – we certainly are!

Christmas Prelude Has Arrived in Kennebunkport!

December 1st, 2012 by Judi Hauer

This morning visitors to Kennebunkport woke up to a light snowfall (the best kind – no shoveling required!) and prepared for day two of Christmas Prelude.  During the day, Dock Square was bustling with folks getting a jump on their Christmas shopping, sipping cocoa, and enjoying old-fashioned trolley rides.  But around 5 o’clock, our sleepy little village exploded with holiday cheer as we waited with great anticipation for the lighting of the Christmas tree!  While waiting for that exciting moment, we were

Christmas Prelude Kennebunkport

The Christmas Prelude tree is lit – complete with its iconic lobster tree topper!

serenaded by a variety of vocal and acoustic groups.  And later, out in Cape Porpoise, everyone enjoyed a second lighting of the iconic lobster trap tree!

Today’s schedule of events is packed with fun activities and great shopping opportunities, but here are some of our favorites.

  • Craft Fairs Galore!  Through the afternoon, enjoy great shopping opportunities at the Lower Village Fire Station, Atlantic Hall in Cape Porpoise, the American Legion (across from the Police Station), and the Lower Village Senior Center.  Or you could check out the offerings at the Village Baptist Church, the Community House (next to South Congregational Church), and, of course, the mother of all craft fairs at the Consolidated School, just around the corner from our Maine bed and breakfast.
  • Tour the town!  When you’re in HGTV’s second best Christmas town in the nation, you’ve got to experience it all, so hop aboard an old-fashioned trolley for a warm and cozy tour of Kennebunkport – perfect for photos of the decked out splendor.  Or consider wandering over to the Nott House, home of the Kennebunkport Historical Society for a tour of the White Columns property, or enjoy a guided village walking tour leaving from the same location!
  • Don’t miss the Annual Hat Parade through Dock Square this afternoon – it’s a must-see!
  • A favorite feature of Christmas Prelude Weekend One is the caroling and processional from the Lower Village tree lighting to the Franciscan Monastery by candlelight.  Complete with chestnuts roasting on an open fire (and Jack Frost nipping at your nose… it is December in Maine!), this is an awe-inspiring event sure to get you in the holiday spirit.

Now, this doesn’t list doesn’t come close to touching all of the incredible activities happening all over Kennebunkport this weekend, so be sure to check out the complete list of events here.  Happy Christmas Prelude!

Gearing Up For Kennebunkport’s Christmas Prelude

November 21st, 2012 by Judi Hauer

It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is right upon us, but we’re in full swing gearing up for Kennebunkport’s Christmas Prelude. In fact, as I was driving through Dock Square just moments ago, and found people setting up the Christmas tree! The garlands are up, adorning the sides of the bridge and all of the lamp and electrical posts lining the streets.  So while we haven’t quite broken out our festive decorations (but it’s coming,

The Christmas Prelude tree is going up in Kennebunkport's Dock Square!

Kennebunkport Christmas Prelude

that’s for sure!), the town is really filling us with holiday cheer!

So after our bellies are filled tomorrow and we share our thanks for the blessings in our lives, we’ll start the preparation in earnest, because we certainly want to keep up Kennebunkport’s reputation as having one of the best Christmas celebrations in the nation.  And Christmas Prelude is certainly worth it’s title, with festive decor tastefully gracing the homes and bed and breakfasts of the Historic District and a plethora of merriment-filled activities.  At the Maine Stay Inn, we are particularly looking forward to the second weekend of Christmas Prelude, which has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years.  Don’t get me wrong, the first weekend is incredible, and with the throngs of people milling about, the town just comes alive with Christmas spirit.  But the second weekend encompasses our favorite events, with classic events like tree lighting and caroling, but also incredible events like fireworks, doggie parades, and an inn-to-inn open house.  But last year, the Historic Inns of Kennebunkport debuted our new fave – a reenactment of Mary and Joseph’s search for an inn, complete with caroling and holiday goodies.  So while all of us are looking forward to Christmas Prelude in Kennebunkport, we can’t wait for a delicious feast tomorrow and spending time with those important in our lives.  We hope that you all have an opportunity to do the same and look forward to sharing this joyous holiday season with you!