Whether you’re cheering on the late arrival of winter in Maine this year, or doing sun salutations willing on warmer weather, we’ve got some great ideas to get you through a Maine spring in the Lakes Region.
Trust us, ski season is not over in Maine. While our winter got off to a slow start, it picked up steam in a major way in late February and early March. Pleasant Mountain (formerly Shawnee Peak) got over 35 inches of fresh powder in the first week of March alone. Conditions are mint and March most always means lots of bluebird days on the slopes. Pleasant Mountain has a few events planned in March:
- Annual Mattress Race where some people ditch the skis and board and brings their mattress and their most creative outfits to compete in a downhill mattress race for prizes. A perfect spectator event after you’ve taken a few runs!
- Spring Fling where skiers and boarders compete in the “Slush Cup,” skimming across a frigid pond to see who can make it the longest distance. Ice bath not your thing? There will be plenty of live music and great food at Blizzard’s Pub, including the most amazing Bloody Mary in the state of Maine.
Pleasant Mountain is also home to the most night skiing in New England! 4 lifts servicing 19 trails Monday – Saturday evening from 3:30 – 8 or 9pm (closing hours vary by day, check their website for hours). Ski under moon and stars - a unique Maine experience!
Snow Shoeing & Cross-Country Skiing
If you’re more of a slower pace winter sports person, Highland Ridge Ski just started up this winter and is free for all! They are a community run trail system on Highland Ridge, which runs above Highland Lake in Bridgton. Ski the 17 miles of trails through the pines and open fields and stop by “The Dollhouse” for a warm-up by the woodstove. They even have honor system ski and boot lending! Check them out on Instagram @highlandridge_ski for maps and details.
Downtown Bridgton is home to quaint boutiques offering everything from housewares, to antiques, to wine and chocolate. You could spend a full day shopping in Bridgton and find so many one-of-a-kind treasures.
J. Decor at the far west end of Main Street is like stepping back in time as you enter the front door of 1873 former apothecary. It exudes European flair, shelves filled with a curated selection of refined housewares. Wander into the back and be greeted by one of the shopkeepers, eager to engage you in a wine tasting. You’ll be hard pressed to leave without a bottle of wine and some other fantastic offering.
Head east toward the center of town and hit up the Bridgton Antiques Store. This is not your grandma’s antique store! It’s an eclectic mix of incense and gems, original canvas paintings, postcards and signs, as well as locally made items featuring Pleasant Mountain or Maine-sourced materials. You could spend hours hunting the shelves for unique hobnail milk glass in hard-to-find colors or poking in the clothing racks looking at new and vintage clothes alike. It’s full of endless, fun finds!
Whether you need a little lift before you take off on your shopping trek or are ready to wind down once your bags are full, head to Sweet Dirt for all of your cannabis needs. You’ll find a wide array of organically grown cannabis products including gummies, chocolates, pre-rolls, flower and concentrates in addition to highly knowledgeable, local-to-the-Bridgton-area budtenders who are ready to help you navigate all of the strains Sweet Dirt offers. There are some great deals happening in the month of March and April, so it’s a great time to stop by and find your favorite item or learn a little more about cannabis and give some items a try. You can even order online at sweetdirt.com for easy in-store pick up. Sweet Dirt is located just outside of downtown Bridgton at 1 Beaver Creek Farm Road.
Maine Maple Weekend
A Maine tradition across the state, Maine Maple Weekend is a weekend-long food event celebrating the sweet and sticky deliciousness of maple syrup. Sap and sugar houses open their properties to demonstrate how sap is tapped from the Maple trees and then boiled into syrup. Many farms will offer samples, might have a pancake breakfast, and will most definitely be selling bottles of their scrumptious syrup and other maple creations.
This year, Maine Maple Weekend is happening March 25 and 26. Some farms in the Bridgton area that are open to the public include:
Colonial Hill Farm in Waterford
Just north of Bridgton, will be hosting demonstrations, samples, and maple products and baked goods for sale. Colonialhillfarm.com or on Facebook
Weston’s Farm in Fryeburg
Just west of Bridgton, has been tapping their Maple trees for 150 years. They will have demonstrations and free samples of their maple ice cream on Sunday, March 26. Westonsfarm.com