Maine Places

The Summer Rush

Maine Places

Whoever coined the phrase “lazy summer days” must not have lived in a place where bona fide warm weather lasts a mere three months. Far from remaining idle, most Mainers I know view this fleeting window as a call to action — like summer is a massive melting ice cream cone and we must race to enjoy every last bit. My attempts at sunshine-induced carpe diem have led me to persuade my exhausted children, who have been at school and camp all day, to accompany me on weeknight bike rides and walks, and to pack virtually every weekend from mid-June to Labor Day with overnights and activities.

Our latest excursion was a camping trip to Recompence Shore Campground in Freeport with four other families. We pitched our tents together along the edge of a giant field, where sea breezes mingled with the earthy scents of an adjacent vegetable garden, and there were moments of genuine repose — when the dads engaged all nine kids in a parachute game, when the moms sipped piña coladas while the guys cooked dinner, and when everyone was happily munching s’mores in the twilight. (A variation on the classic campfire snack I highly recommend: cinnamon graham crackers + toasted marshmallow + Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. We have dubbed this “The Steph,” after the friend who introduced it last weekend.)

But the next day, as we packed up for what seemed like the hundredth time this summer, I found myself picturing the field before us in shades of orange and gold, a dusting of frost shimmering on its surface — and I was only a little bit sad.

Has your summer been leisurely or crazy? I’d love to hear about your adventures and any advice you have on carving out downtime.


  1. Owning a B&B in Freeport means a summer of working 14 hour days for about 90 straight days. This is our 4th summer. I miss what summer used to be and look forward to having summers again some day. In the meantime I live vicariously through our guests travels and my friends on facebook. I have 6 anderondack chairs on our large farmhouse porch that I have not sat in once this year. I think I’ll grab a book and head out for a while. After all, those crisp autumn Maine days are right around the corner!

    • Sarah Stebbins

      Hi Nancy — I often think of all of you in the hospitality industry during the summer. You work SO hard during the prime months in Maine. Thank you for the work you do and I hope you can find a little time each day for those Adirondack chairs. 🙂

  2. Cathy Whynot

    I summered many vacations on the coastal parts of Maine with my husband and children from Ogunquit to Camden. We lived and raised our children on Cape Cod in the one of the oldest villages on the Cape, Sandwich, Ma.

    Here we are back in New England after spending 13 years in AZ. But most importantly in a enriched, scenic and beautiful area of Maine. I look forward to my semi retirement phase with my husband caring for pets with a doggy daycare business we plan to open in the Spring of 2018,
    Its wonderful to come to Maine to relax, but also to work hard during the tourism period to ensure all our visitors have a wonderful stay in this lovely place I now call home!

    • Sarah Stebbins

      Congratulations on your move, Cathy, and please keep me posted on your doggy daycare business. I might have a customer. 🙂 Your next phase sounds perfect.

    • James Bell

      I am a electrical contractor that currently lives in Oklahoma. My family and I have visited maines coast multiple times, usually staying around kennebunk and Biddeford. We are planning on making the move to Maine we absolutely love it. Any thoughts on Camden for our business and family. We have three children ages 18,12,11
      Any thoughts would help

      • Sarah Stebbins

        Hi James. I travel from Portland to Down East’s office in Rockport, next door to Camden, every week and I can tell you it is wonderful community. Great schools, people, and access to mountains, ocean, and lakes. If you don’t mind being 1.5 hours from the city/airport, it’s perfect. If I weren’t already settled, Camden would be the first place I’d move to. You can search for houses for sale here in the real estate section of our site. Good luck with your move and let me know how it goes!

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