About The Author

Amanda Pikersby is a freelance writer and retired elementary school teacher who previously worked for several Maine Tourism businesses as a travel writer.

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Monday, November 5, 2012

Spending the Night in a Lighthouse is a Maine Vacation Highlight

Is it possible to really sleep in a lighthouse, one of the iconic beacons that have long inspired stories of adventure, romance and lore? In fact you can arrange to sleep in a lighthouse as a part of your Maine vacation as well as vacations spent in a number of seaside and lakeside locales. The range in what you will spend varies significantly from place to place, rising with the number of amenities that accompany the lodging. 

Certain lighthouses available for overnight stays are the original lighthouses keepers’ quarters that have been converted into hotel rooms. Many have ample space to accommodate a family or group of friends who wish to stay together during their vacation. Other lighthouses have just one or two rooms available for lodging, allowing for a more intimate and romantic experience for their occupants. Many lighthouse accommodations are centrally located and convenient to other vacation activities and locales, while others are more remote for those who wish to be more off the beaten path during their stay.

For those spending a vacation in Maine, there are other options to consider beyond the traditional converted lighthouse. Lodgings like the Sebasco Harbor Resort offer the feel of a lighthouse with all of the modern conveniences of a luxury hotel. Ocean views can be enjoyed from any of the lighthouse rooms in this creative alternative to a cottage.  Each room has its own private bath and flat screen TV along with windows over looking the dramatic Atlantic Ocean on the coast of Maine. Visitors staying on the lighthouse’s top floor are treated to a promenade deck, reminiscent of widows’ walks of old that provided eager wives with the first glimpse of returning ships out to sea.

Make your Maine family resort hotel more memorable by considering the creative options available and book your lighthouse accommodations today.
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Friday, December 10, 2010

Maple Syrup Snow Cones – A traditional Canadian Winter Treat

An article about maple syrup on a vacation blog... Why not? I recently visited Quebec and had the opportunity to indulge in a local Canadian treat and tradition, maple syrup on snow. If you have spent some time in Quebec during the winter months, you know that snow, ice, and bitter temperatures are the norm. Winter carnivals are a wonderful source of diversion, and winter sports are commonplace when free time and the outdoors meet up. When the snow begins to melt and the days grow longer, other traditions that warm the spirit begin; one of those being “sugar on snow,” a beloved treat that features maple syrup.

Like our neighbors to the North, New Englanders make practice of visiting sugar houses in the spring to watch maple syrup production and taste the delicious treats that the famous trees are best known for inspiring. Many of the typical treats found at these open-house events include waffles covered in syrup, maple cream or maple butter on toast, and maple candy. One of the most treasured treats though, remains sugar on snow. A thickened hot maple syrup is poured over fresh snow and eaten with sticks. In many Canadian cities it is paired with dill pickles to contrast a sour taste with the sweetness of the syrup. Donuts, coffee and maple toffee is also frequently served with the sugar on snow treat.

If in search of a treat to satisfy your sweet tooth during the spring sap run, maple on snow could be the perfect find.
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Friday, April 30, 2010

A Visit to the Lighthouse State

Did you know the State of Maine has more coastal lighthouses than anywhere else in the United States? By 1900 a mariner could sail along the coast and always have a lighthouse in sight. Today there are 65 lighthouses still standing and they provide a wonderful excuse to hop in the car and investigate the craggy coast of Maine.

Many Maine hotels and resorts offer a variety of Maine vacation packages. One even has a lighthouse you can stay in! So hit the road and experience the best of Maine this summer.

A great place to begin your trip is with a stop at the Maine Lighthouse Museum in Rockland. The museum has the largest collection of lighthouse artifacts and mementoes. In addition, the museum provides heartwarming stories of the keepers and families of Maine Lighthouses.

Once you have a feel for life in a lighthouse, head out and explore some of the 28 lighthouses of the Mid Coast Maine region. Located in Rockland, the Rockland Breakwater Light stands on the South end of the breakwater beyond Owls Head. Between 1881 and 1899, a granite breakwater, almost a mile long, was built to help protect Rockland harbor. As the work progressed, a small moveable beacon was moved farther out each time the breakwater was extended. The light was relocated four times between 1888 and 1895, and, finally, in 1902, a permanent lighthouse was built at the breakwater's end.

From there you can visit Owl’s Head near Rockland Harbor; Tenants Harbor light, now owned by Jamie Wyeth, Andrew Wyeth’s son; Marshall Point Light Station, built in 1832; and Pemaquid Point Light built in 1827 with the original Fresnel lens still in operation.

Enjoy an authentic Maine experience with your very own lighthouse tour!
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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Owls Head Maine

Owls Head, Maine boasts of a 20-feet tall lighthouse standing on a promontory that is 100 feet from sea level. The Owl’s Head Light in Owls Head, Maine may be modest, but to see it a top the cliffs is a view that is worthy of any painting. How this picturesque village got its name is quite sketchy. Some say that the rock jutting out from the waters in Owls Head, Maine looked similar to that of the head and neck of an owl. Others say that it came from “Mecadacut” which is a Native American word for Owls Head. Wherever this village got its name from, there is no doubt that Owls Head, Maine is a must-see for anyone wishing a complete Maine vacation experience.

Climb the steps toward the lighthouse for a grand view of Penobscot Bay. Watch out for the loud sound of the foghorn and imagine how this sound welcomed sailors braving storms and squalls. Owls Head, Maine has an old-fashioned charm that will win the hearts of those who would like a laidback vacation. However, for those who’d like more action, Owls Head, Maine also offers recreational activities like swimming and sailing. You can also rent a boat and fish. Windsurfing, biking, hiking, golf and tennis are also other activities you could pursue while you’re in Owls Head, Maine.
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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland Maine

The Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland, Maine highlights works of art from American artists primarily from the late 18th to 20th century in its 20,000 square feet of exhibition space. The museum was founded and funded by Lucy Copeland Farnsworth who bequeathed in her will that one of the buildings she owned be converted into an art gallery and be named after her father. She was the daughter of one of Rockland’s most prominent businessman and in 1935, at her death, donated the sum of 1.3 million dollars to be used for the art gallery's establishment. The Farnsworth was opened to the public on August 15, 1948 through the auspices of her Board of Trustees and Robert Peabody Bellows.

The Farnsworth Art Museum highlights the works of American artists with associations to Maine and who have gained national attention for their works. The exhibits display American art at its finest. Walk through its many galleries and you will discover the names of artists associated with part of American art history such as Gilbert Stuart, Thomas Eakins, Thomas Sully, Fitz Henry Lane, Eastman Johnson, Childe Hassam, Frank Benson, and Maurice Prendergast. These prominent artists form part of the permanent collection of the Farnsworth Art Museum which is aptly titled "Maine in America".

The Farnsworth Art Museum has a sensible layout and visitors often comment that this layout makes it easy to navigate the museum. Although the museum spans two buildings and many galleries, you will still have a relaxing time just looking at the works of art that it offers. Because the museum houses more than 10,000 works of art, there is always something new on display. The Farnsworth Art Museum also offers a large library that is housed in its Rockland, Maine campus.

The museum is also known nationally for the The Wyeth Center which features three generations of America’s first family of American art, the Wyeth family. In this center you will be able to enjoy the works of N.C (Newell Convers) Wyeth, Andrew Wyeth, and Jamie (James Browning) Wyeth. It is one of only two centers in the United States dedicated to the artistry of the Wyeth family.

N.C Wyeth is one of America’s greatest illustrators who illustrated for 112 books, including Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island. He also produced more than 3,000 realist paintings in his lifetime. His son, Andrew Wyeth, was also a realist painter, referred to as “Painter of the People”. One of Andrew Wyeth’s most famous works is Christina’s World (1948), depicting his neighbor Christina Olson. Jamie Wyeth is Andrew’s second son, who is also a realist painter. He prefers oil as his medium while his father worked mostly with watercolor and tempera. Jamie’s posthumous portrait of John F. Kennedy is one of his most famous works.

N.C Wyeth’s works are shown at the Linda Bean Folkers Gallery, Marylouise Tandy Cowan Gallery features the works of Jamie Wyeth, and the Hadlock Galleries and Study Center contain Andrew Wyeth’s works.

The Farnsworth Art Museum also houses the second largest collection of the works of prominent sculptor Louise Nevelson. Nevelson, a renowned sculptor in the twentieth century, was born in Russia but grew up and spent her adolescent years in Maine. She was a very prominent abstract expressionist sculptor who liked to work with everyday, commonly discarded things to create her works of art. Her works of sculpture still inspire artists and sculptors to this day.

Because of its mission to establish Maine’s place in the American art world, the collections in the Farnsworth Art Museum also contains quilts and samples of American craftspeople from recent American history. As a result, you can also view folk art and ship models in this museum.

Two historic homes are part of the museum’s properties as well, the Farnsworth Homestead and the Olson House. The Farnsworth Homestead is the home of benefactor Lucy Farnsworth. It is maintained with its original furnishings and serves as an historic example of the lifestyle of an upperclass family living in the late 19th century. The Olson House located in Cushing, Maine was the house that inspired “Christina’s World,” Andrew Wyeth’s most famous painting. The Farnsworth Homestead was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973 and The Olson House in 1993. Both houses are open for viewing by the public.

For more information about the Farnsworth Art Museum, visit their website at farnsworthmuseum.org
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