Welcome to Westbrook & the Lakes Region
Located just northwest of Portland, Westbrook is a busy little city, a commercial hub with a history in textile and paper mills on the Presumpscot River. Much of the old mill space around the downtown district has been converted to artists’ studios, entrepreneurs’ workshops and other business startups. The towns of the Lake Region, with their myriad lakes, rivers and ponds, are leafy meccas for watersports enthusiasts, fishermen, hikers and campers.
1. Westbrook River Walk
The Westbrook River Walk, along the Presumpscot River, home to the world-famous Spinning Ice Disk of 2019, runs parallel to Main Street from Cumberland Street to Bridge Street. It offers a chance to take in a little of Westbrook’s history while stretching your legs. Stroll past the powerful Saccarappa Falls and historic Dana Warp Mill and through downtown to Riverbank Park. Parking is available at numerous free parking lots along Main Street.
2. Erin Flett Studio + Shop
Maine designer Erin Flett has been making charming textiles for a decade, most recently in an historic mill in Westbrook, but this summer she moved into her own factory/showroom space in downtown Gorham. Flett handprints her hand drawn designs on everything from pillows to wallpaper and handbags, using Belgian linen and cotton canvas woven in North Carolina. Her new shop is in an old theater building in downtown Gorham (2 Main St., Gorham). The factory is upstairs. (207–837–0763; erinflett.com)
3. Seacoast Adventure
Boasting a 100-foot Sky Swing, Hill Slides tubing, Crazy Apes Aerial Adventure Park, Shipwreck Cove water playground for kids, go-karts and mini golf, Seacoast Adventure on Route 302 in Windham has offerings for the whole family. (seacoastadventure.com)
4. Naples Seaplane Adventures
In late September, when the leaves are just starting to turn, get a bird’s-eye view of the Lakes Region, via a seaplane flight. Leaving from Long Lake in Naples. Naples Seaplane Adventures has a floatplane that takes up to five passengers on flights around the coast of Sebago Lake or in the foothills of the White Mountains. Fall hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the following dates: Sept. 2–7 and 21, 23–28 and Oct. 1–5, 8–12 and 14–19. (207–232–2594; naplesseaplaneadventures.com)
5. Sebago Lake State Park
This 1,400-acre Maine gem at 11 Park Access Road in Casco is an inexpensive way to spend the day at Maine’s deepest and second-largest lake. The day-use area features extensive sand beaches, tables, grills, a boat ramp, lifeguards and bathhouses. There is also a 250-site camping area with hot showers and restrooms. Whether hiking on marked trails or bicycling on park roads, visitors find a multitude of ways to enjoy the park and the adjacent Sebago Lake. (207–693–6613; maine.gov)
6. Hacker’s Hill
It’s only 750 feet high, but this hilltop affords 360-degree views of the White Mountains to the northwest, Maine mountains to the north and Sebago Lake to the southwest. Hacker’s Hill Preserve on Quaker Ridge Road in Casco is open to the public, with a picnic area and bathroom at the top. Take Route 302 through Windham to the Casco town line, look for Cry of the Loon gift shop on the right and take a right onto Quaker Ridge Road. The hill is a few miles up on the right.
7. Songo River Queen II
The Songo River Queen II, a replica of a Mississippi River paddle wheeler, takes up to 350 passengers on cruises on Long Lake. The Queen has an open-air deck with sun and rain protection, and food and beverages are available. Cruises, varying in length and itinerary, leave from the causeway on Route 302 in Naples. No reservations needed, trips twice daily until Labor Day and then weekends only, except for Columbus Day. (songoriverqueen.net)
8. Maine Lakes Brewfest
The 16th Annual Maine Lakes BrewFest, at Point Sebago (261 Point Sebago Rd., Casco) features 36 brewers, 10 food vendors and unlimited sampling for anyone 21 and up. The event often draws a crowd of over 3,000. Two live bands, playing on the beach. Expect pulled pork sandwiches and lobster rolls. Rain or shine (there are tents). Sept. 28, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Early bird tickets $30 includes a sampling class; $5 parking; mainelakesbrewfest.com)
9. Maine Folk and Bluegrass Festival
This end of summer celebration brings new grass and traditional music together on the shores of Sebago Lake for a weekend of fun. A folk community production that embraces roots and progressive sub genres at Point Sebago Resort (261 Point Sebago Rd., Casco). Family friendly event with activities for adults and kids, including beach fires, beer gardens and food vendors. Bands include The Grass Is Dead for two nights as well as Tricky Britches, Honeysuckle and Billy Wylder. Sept. 7 2–10 p.m. ($25; mainefolk.com)
10. Rufus Porter Museum
Housed in two historic buildings in downtown Bridgton, this museum celebrates the work of 19th century folk artist Rufus Porter, renowned for his landscape murals and miniature portraits. Porter also was a patented inventor and the founding publisher and editor of the magazine Scientific American. A collection of his art, models of some of his inventions, his books and pamphlets are on display. Follow Route 302 to 121 Main St., Bridgton. (rufusportermuseum.org)